Letters to the Editor for Aug. 24, 2018

Published 9:46 am Friday, August 24, 2018

Kindness stands out in Winchester

I recently visited Winchester to attend the funeral of Rodney Clements that was held at the Calvary Christian Church. As an out of town guest, I was extremely impressed with the love and support of the community, residents, Calvary Church parishioners, Pastor and basically everyone I came into contact with during the visit.

I continue to be overwhelmed by the respect shown during the funeral procession from Calvary church to the funeral home. During the procession, every single car, truck, utility vehicle, had stopped and pulled over along the entire route. Every single vehicle stopped and many folks stood outside of their vehicle to show love and respect. In this day and age of everybody being “busy-busy” and in a hurry this is not common.

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I have never witnessed this in my entire life across the country. Yes, I have seen people slow down and many people stop and pull over but not every single resident in the town of Winchester.

I just wanted to say ‘Thank You’ to all the residents and the community of Winchester. You should be extremely proud of your town and your values.

Thank you.

Mark Ballard


Leeds is a gem in Winchester

I hope the people of Winchester realize what a treasure they have in the form of the Leeds Center for the Arts. Over the last few years, I have been to a number of their productions and events and have been impressed each time with the quality of the shows, the professionalism of the cast and crew, and the enthusiasm of the audiences.

Recent musicals like “Mary Poppins” are real crowd pleasers, but “Hairspray” and “Into the Woods” have greater depths and important messages — and were handled beautifully by the directors and performers.

“Outside our Doors,” a play devised by their Youth Advisory Board and written by commissioned playwright Margo Buchanan, was a real testament to how an arts organization can serve its community — by responding to its needs, showcasing its talent and telling its story. I am just one of dozens of people I know who were deeply moved by the experience of that production, and I have heard many stories of local businesses and nonprofits who have been impacted in a positive way by the kind and truthful light that it shone on the people and history of Winchester.

Cities across the country are being revitalized by their embrace of history, celebration of the arts, dedication to their young artists and focus on the quality of life of its community alongside commercial success and prosperous business.

Winchester seems to have taken a turn for the better since the Leeds Center reorganized its operations and increased the number, frequency and quality of its productions a few years ago.

Surrounding towns should borrow a page from its playbook for success.

In the meantime, I encourage the community of Winchester to find every way possible to support this marvelous organization that is bringing people in from around the state and putting people — especially students — to work.

Bo List