Camden gets props
Calling it a haven for trout anglers and an oasis of woods and river valley, the StarTribune did a nice piece on Camden State Park in its Travel section Sunday. It's a great shout-out to our local state park as camping season is looming right around the corner. We should all appreciate what we have in this great park just a few miles from Marshall - proof that you don't have to travel hundreds of miles to enjoy all nature has to offer, whether you want to fish for trout, swim in the spring-fed pond or hike along the park's 15-plus miles of trails.
Big, important weekend in Marshall
OK, Mother Nature, you owe us one maybe two. With any luck, the weather will cooperate this weekend and we can put the dark and damp days behind us for a bit. We need a dose of nice weather because it truly is a big weekend in Marshall, and we encourage everyone to find time to do your part and pitch in for a couple of great causes and get some exercise as well. On Saturday, the March for Babies Walk will take place at 9 a.m. (registration) at the Marshall Middle School - it's the March of Dimes' premiere fundraising event. Saturday is also Join Hands Day - a national day of service that you can participate in at 2 p.m. at the Marshall National Guard Armory. The following day, it's the MS Walk at 10 a.m. at Independence Park. If you're still in the process of working your way into shape, you can choose the 1-mile route instead of the 5-miler. At 11 a.m. Sunday is the Junior High Festival at the middle school for students in grades 6-8. The annual event is sponsored by the Diocese of New Ulm and Sunday mass will be celebrated at 5:45 p.m. And if all this isn't enough, don't forget about the city-wide garage sale.
Marshall youth advocate at Capitol
We applaud the Marshall High School students who as part of the Southwest Community Health Improvement Program coalition visited the Capitol earlier this month to advocate for changes to smoking/e-cigarette policies in the state. As members of the Southwest Community Health Improvement Program coalition, juniors Collin Reilly, Elizabeth Her, McKeigh Bossuyt and Nicole Wyffels, along with sophomore Emily Her met with legislators to speak their voice on making foster homes smoke-free and pushing common-sense regulations introduced on e-cigarettes. E-cigs may be looked at as a safe alternative to the real thing, but until we know what the ingredients are - what we're inhaling and exhaling - we should assume they're not as safe as we might think. The FDA is working on a proposal that would require ingredient disclosure, federal standards and warning labels for e-cigs, but that reality appears to be a couple years away. Hats off to the students for not just talking about what needs to happen but for making a concerted effort to get something done locally. As Reilly said: "What a lot of people don't know is how unregulated (e-cigs) are. We used the example at the Capitol: 'If I wanted to mix up a batch of so called e-juice in my garage and throw a label on it, I could go sell it.' I'm not sure if it's to that extreme, but pretty dang close, and that's really scary. You have no idea what you're putting in your body. I think what people do with their money and with their body is up to them, I just think they should know exactly what's at stake."