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The Effingham Park District has kept its recreational finances in the red by just a few cents. That’s a roseworthy accomplishment in these economically difficult times. Effingham Park District Board Treasurer Anita Broom told the board this week that the recreation side of the park district was in the red by just 17 cents because of refunds given for summer programs canceled or modified by the COVID-19 pandemic. Broom said recreation basically broke even for the past month between revenues and expenses, with the 17 cents being the only disparity.

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Roses to Effingham Noon Rotary, which will once again sponsor the City of Effingham fireworks on July 4 at dusk. The rain date is July 5. The fireworks will be set off at the EHS sports complex/football field. The Rotary encourages everyone to watch the show from their vehicles in area parking lots.

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Your EDN editor agrees with the decision by the Effingham County Fair Board this week to cancel most activities for this year’s fair. So roses to those officials who made that difficult decision. But this whole pandemic is frustratingly thorny. So thorns to the situation, even if it’s impossible to pin blame anywhere in particular. As the EDN Editorial Board said on Friday, the responsible decisions we make today will make the days ahead brighter.

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A story by EDN reporter Kaitlin Cordes this week described the roseworthy project of Don Thoele at his Effingham home on South Second Street. There’s a 70-foot-tall red oak tree towering over his yard. Once it was trimmed, Thoele saw an opportunity. The wood worker and builder created 14 wooden birdhouses to attach to the trunk. “What I’m doing that for is so the birds will have some shelter and have a place to hide,” Thoele said.

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Here’s a reminder for a roseworthy program by Effingham County FISH. THe organization is accepting applications for free school supplies for children in kindergarten through eighth grade who are in need and reside in Effingham County. Those needing supplies must complete an application for assistance by Friday, July 31. Applications are available at the FISH Service Center, located at the corner of Grove and Maple streets in Effingham, or Catholic Charities, 1502 E. Fayette Ave., Effingham. Completed applications may be mailed to Effingham County FISH, P.O. Box 473, Effingham IL 62401 or dropped off at the mailbox at the FISH Service Center or Catholic Charities no later than July 31.

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Here’s a rosy reminder that your EDN editor likes to mention from time to time: As the phrase on the masthead of our printed Opinion Page describes it, this space is a “Crossroads for Conversation.” The discussion is shaped by editorial cartoons from syndicated cartoonists, letters to the editor from area residents — and sometimes from elsewhere — contributions from several prolific “local columnists,” syndicated columnists, and guest editorials from other newspapers. You’ll also find “Our View” editorials here. When we publish “Our View” on the Opinion Page, it represents what we call “the voice of the Effingham Daily News.” It results from discussion among members of the editorial board listed at the top of the newspaper’s Opinion Page: Publisher Amy Winter, Editor Jeff Long and Director of Reader Services Todd Buenker. To be clear: That commentary is opinion, as opposed to the factual news reports that appear elsewhere in the paper. It’s not meant to represent all points of view, nor even to always reflect the view of most people who live in our community. It’s the editorial board’s point of view in the same way a letter to the editor represents the writer’s viewpoint. We call it the voice of the EDN, but that does not mean every employee in this building agrees with it. Does everyone in your home vote for the same candidate? Can they even agree where to go for dinner tonight? Sometimes, not every member of the editorial board agrees with what we voice on this page. That’s the nature of our democracy. Just look at the U.S. Supreme Court, where opinions are rarely unanimous. In the end, we’re not trying to persuade you to support a particular side in a debate. We want you to persuade yourself of the best course after opening your mind to various viewpoints.

Effingham Daily News Editor Jeff Long can be reached at jeff.long@effinghamdailynews.com or 217-347-7151 ext. 129.

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Editor

Graduated with a degree in journalism from UW-Madison in 1987. Reporter at a newspaper outside London, England. Then a reporter at papers in Pennsylvania and Virginia. For 13 years, a reporter and editor at the Chicago Tribune. Named EDN editor in 2014.