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May 5, 2008

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There’s something good here . . .
What about those Wildcats? We wish them the best in today’s game. From all reports, this team, their coaches, the drill team, cheerleaders, band and fans have retained their sense of good sportsmanship throughout the playoff process. Good for them and good for the city of Sulphur Springs.

There’s something good here . . .
The people of Hopkins County have really come through for those in need this Christmas. Almost every edition of the newspaper has been full of the good things people are doing to help out.

There’s something good here . . .

A lady called the newspaper Friday morning. One particular “Letter to Santa” touched her. She’s going out to get the specific presents the child requested. That is giving at its greatest.

There’s something good here . . .
The national news is full of stories about the sad state of public education. I’m not in every classroom in town, but when I do visit, I am impressed by our kids and their teachers. Most public schools have eliminated funding for the arts. Not here. The arts are flourishing in SSISD, and our students continue to excel at all levels. I had the opportunity to visit with the All-Region Strings students and one of their teachers at the middle school this week. Everyone was beaming with pride. No lack of enthusiasm in that band hall.

There’s something good here . . .

My family has always watched “The Nutcracker” ballet together on Christmas Eve. It’s one of our holiday traditions to sit down and watch Mikhail  Baryshnikov and Gelsey Kirkland’s interpretation of the classic story of a Clara, a young girl, and her special Christmas present that comes to life in her dreams. Baryshnikov and Kirkland’s version, recorded in the late 1970s, has been considered the standard by which all Nutcrackers are judged.

On Monday, I was flipping through the channels and happened upon the San Francisco Ballet’s new production of Tchaikovsky’s most popular composition. The set, the costumes, the orchestra and the incredible dancers in this beautiful video have set a new standard  for dance companies.

PBS (Channel 13 at my house in Winnsboro) will broadcast the ballet again at 8 p.m. on Christmas Eve. If you’re busy, set your recorders and then carve out some time during the holidays to watch the magic happen.

The Snow Queen and snowflakes dance in a gentle blizzard. The Russians explode onto the stage from Faberge eggs. The “Waltz of the Flowers” features a rainbow of faulous colors. My favorite, The Sugar Plum Fairy, is so light and airy, you’d think she was spun from a cloud.

There is a new twist at the end of the ballet that makes so much sense and is danced so perfectly by a “grown up” Clara that I can’t believe it hasn’t been part of the story all along.

There’s something good here . . .

You have one more chance to put a copy of the The Hopkins County Veterans Memorial Cookbook under the tree. For those hard-to-buy-for people on your holiday shopping list, this great gift is available for $20 at their website, http://www.hopkinscountyvetsmemorial.i8.com. Local banks also have copies. Call Janie Crump for more information at 903-885-6753.

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