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Nobody asked me, but here goes

By Staff | May 25, 2014

Nobody asked me my opinion, but here goes anyway.

Instead of a column on one subject, here is one that covers a wide variety of items. And, it helps the editor get some things off his chest.

First, the Blue Earth City Council seems to be taking a very close look at the hiring of a new director at the Senior Citizens Center in town.

Instead of just relying on the center’s board to take care of the process and eventually make a recommendation of a person to fill the spot, they want to be involved in the process and the final determination.

I’m not sure they took this much interest in hiring a new police chief or a new public works director, both of whom have way more responsibilities and management requirements than a center director.

And, both of whom were hired from within their respective departments.

This seems like an awful lot of micro-managing just to hire someone who will work part-time and be paid only a little over $10 per hour.

A group of people were able to be present when the new Blue Earth jingle was played publicly for the first time last Thursday morning.

It was catchy and should help give Blue Earth a bit of musical identity in the area.

Just like “We’re a small town, with a big heart; we’re Winnebago,” has done in that town.

Sure, they’re not a Mozart sonata, but a catchy jingle can be a pretty good marketing tool.

Some questioned the $5,000 cost for creating the musical tune, and it is indeed a good piece of change. On the other hand, not much comes cheap anymore.

Now, hopefully, the next project will be able to raise some funds for four new “Welcome to Blue Earth” signs.

I have said it before and I will say it again, this is one thing that also helps give a city an identity. Every other town in Faribault County has nice “Welcome to” signs, but not here.

Come into Blue Earth from the east and you think you are entering Steinberg Park. From the west it is a new industrial park sign.

People traveling north and south on Highway 169 probably turn to each other and ask, “What town was that we just drove through?”

Take a look at the new sign at the West Industrial Park and you can see exactly what is needed on the four main entrances into Blue Earth.

Speaking of signs, is it just me or is the Blue Earth Area High School sign in the wrong spot?

I imagine when it was installed it was visible from Highway 169. But now trees and foliage have grown up and the sign is not visible from, well, from anywhere.

My opinion is, it needs to be moved right to the entrance of the school, by the McDonald’s intersection. At least then visitors would know they are going into the right place.

I understand it once had a moving word sign underneath it, just like the one at the United South Central School in Wells.

I wonder if that can be reinstalled as well.

And, as long as I am whining, here is one more push for doing some work next summer on making downtown Blue Earth more attractive.

A group of business owners are concerned about keeping as many parking spaces as possible. They make a good point. They need places for their customers to park. But, if there are narrower sidewalks, it seems to me that having things such as bump outs at the intersections, attractive street lights, signs and greenscape (bushes, trees, flowers) becomes even more important.

Sure, just having fresh new pavement on the street and new concrete sidewalks will look nice all by itself. But, why stop there? We hope there will be other items added which will break up the starkness of just pavement and concrete.

There are several committees working on these ideas and I still hope we can take advantage of this opportunity to do some sprucing up Main Street.

That’s my opinion, even if you didn’t ask for it.