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My thoughts about today and hope for the future

By Jeff Jobe, Community Publisher
Barren County Progress JPI

I was asked to consider writing a commentary to Barren County, 2073, by my friend and Jobe Publishing team member, Jessie Crabtree. Jessie is one of those hardworking Quasquibicentennial Committee members.

Jessie already has me paying for a handmade “Time Capsule” and I was happy to be part of it, and this is my contribution to the celebration. But she needs a little more.

The Time Capsule is to be sealed and remain sealed until 2073. It is absolutely beautiful and made of solid cherry by Ron Underwood. His company is Southern Wood and is located in Summer Shade, Kentucky.

I’m pleased that one of my tasks was to get approval to have it stored and placed on display somewhere. It was an easy call to Barren County Judge/Executive Jamie Bewley-Byrd and she was happy to agree to have it kept in a county building so that people can see it.

We now need readers to bring some small items to put inside the capsule, the more people and groups who can participate the better…keep in mind, all items have to do with 2023.

I suggest yearbooks, church directories, a chamber business directory, fliers from special events, restaurant menus, and of course we will place this local newspaper inside it to show what the news was like in 2023.

The Barren County Progress newspaper staff is proud of the local businesses who support the committee and have allowed us to include them in this special Quasquibicentennial Issue. These businesses have joined to help celebrate our 225th year and we hope the legacy we all leave is growth and prosperity to our employees, managers and families of the future.

Everyone wishing to include something can bring their memorabilia to the Progress office on Friday, September 8th, or Saturday, September 9th. We are located at 101 North Public Square. We will have the office staffed from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. on these days and will carefully collect what you bring and see that it is included.

As community publisher, I feel some burden of trying to share some insight to the future of what our current lives entail. Initially, I thought it wouldn’t be much of a task, but as I sit down and begin to type, I am consumed with what to write knowing my grandchildren could very well read it someday.

A foremost thought for me to share is honesty and honesty isn’t always appreciated. I hope they can appreciate my efforts today at that time.

Let us think about it. Will our grandchildren be proud of our accomplishments because we worked together to accomplish great tasks or will we continue to allow teeter toddler politics to continue to divide us allowing nothing of significance to happen?

Will we have stopped caring who a person’s father was when dealing with laws and ordinances, and will we put aside political differences to work together to build the strongest and most beautiful Barren County possible?
We can only hope our water quality stays the same and that water department managers between now and then continue to respect customer pricing.

Will the Barren County of 2073 be proud of the quality of internet and electricity, or will we continue to allow a government monopoly to inhibit competition for what we could have and at a rate we should have? Will our 20-year quasi-government power contact based on deception prove to have been value or will the true owners continue to be held hostage?

Will the educators between now and then put students and taxpayers first and choose to consolidate duplicate services, buildings and land by improving programming for students and pay for actual onsite staffing and in-class education?

Will we finally have managed to have all boards and committees actually meet, keep services open and do their jobs, or will they find that we continue to ignore downtown historical preservation, city codes and maintenance of government-owned assets?

My hope for Barren County 2073 is for them to have trust and respect in their neighbors because we began witnessing it to one another today.

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