This year’s Macon County Fair was a huge success and I am so pleased for all who worked so hard to make it happen. It wasn’t that long ago that fair was almost dead, but new life has been pumped into the annual event held this year the first week in June. Fair Treasurer Teresa McWilliams told me the weather played a big role in its success. “At the beginning of the week, rain was predicted for most of the week, but we never got a drop and the temperatures were cool,” she said. “It is the first time that I ever recall this happening in my 19 years of being out there — we had to stop selling grandstand tickets for the demolition derby because we ran out of seats! A great problem to have!” Teresa said that, if anyone is interested in helping out with the 2020 fair, or if they have ideas, they can email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.” The Macon County Fair is REALLY BACK!!!
• SAD TO see another long-time Decatur/Forsyth business closing its doors for ever. Good’s Furniture, located at 1360 Koester Drive, in Forsyth, is having a complete and total liquidation of its store in a sale that has been attracting a lot of shoppers. The sale has been featuring discounts from 25% to 60% off of their regular prices. Before its move to Forsyth, Good’s was located on North Water Street in the heart of downtown Decatur for as long as I can remember.
• THANKS to Dave Wilhour who responded to my Father’s Day “Viewpoint” column last week with, “You are so right. Dollars can’t buy the things your dad taught. I, too, was blessed to know him and work with him. You didn’t have to be around Sam very long to know he was a Christian just by the way he went about business. As I have told you before, he helped put me on the right road at Caterpillar and never asked anything in return!” Dave also shared a story when dad was a help to another person at Cat, which I will keep private. After he related the story, Dave added: “So true he was mechanical genius! When I called him back and told him what he advised worked he just laughed! We offered to buy him a nice size gift card for his trouble! His answer was: ‘I get a check every month (from Cat). You don’t owe me anything.’ “Sam Osborne was a class act!” Thanks for sharing, Dave. For many years, when I would speak to Caterpillar retirees and other retiree groups, part of my introduction was that I was one of Sam Osborne’s sons. It was always an honor for me. As I mentioned in my column last week, my mom and dad, through their faith and examples, taught me so much about myself and life. Every once-in-a-while I still have someone who will write or tell me, like Dave, that they knew my dad from their days at Caterpillar — and I’m always pleased that they know I’m Sam Osborne’s son. I’m sure a lot of you reading this column today, have exactly the same feelings about your mom and dad.
• SIN-TAX CAPITAL: “What Our Gambling and Pot Fix Says About Illinois” is the title of an article by David Greising, President of the Better Government Association, Illinois non-partisan full-service watchdog. Greising wrote: “Studies show states that turn to gambling and pot tend to have few other options. Heavily in debt, losing population, facing difficulties funding pensions or even paying its bills, Illinois fits the description. “Decades of profligate spending, unkept pension promises and a state constitution that is resistant to reform have brought us to this: Illinois is in the running for sin-tax capital of the nation. “With the adoption of recreational marijuana and a frenzied expansion of gambling—sports betting, new casinos and “racinos,” a doubling of gambling positions—Gov. J.B. Pritzker and state lawmakers took two big steps toward solving the state’s fiscal distress by taxing the habits and vices of residents and visitors… “Lawmakers didn’t stop at gambling and marijuana, either. They doubled the gasoline tax, hiked cigarette taxes and even introduced a new ‘Tesla tax’—charging people for their socially beneficial decision to trade in carbon-belching autos for low-emission electric cars.”