Beth Rickers is the veteran in the newspaper staff with 25 years as the Daily Globe's Features Editor. Interests include cooking, traveling and beer tasting and making with her home-brewing husband, Bryan. She writes an Area Voices blog called Lagniappe, which is a Creole term that means "a little something extra." It can be found at http://lagniappe.areavoices.com/.
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WORTHINGTON -- It's been a few years since Ride has taken the stage at the Unvarnished Music Festival, but Randy Johnson and his musical cohorts will ride again in 2008. Ride will be the headlining band from 8 to 10 p.m. tonight. It's no coincidence that Ride, in its current form, has been performing for nine years and the Worthington Windsurfing Regatta is in its ninth year, too. The inspiration for the Unvarnished Music Festival portion of the event came from the band's members, many of whom also windsurf, during one of the early years of the Regatta.
WORTHINGTON -- Last year, more than 40 bicyclists took to the roads around Worthington for the first Regatta Bike Ride. Although pleased with the turnout, organizers would like to improve on those numbers the second time around. "We're hoping to build on that," said Kenton Meier, Worthington. The bike ride is sponsored by the Sports and Rec Committee of the Worthington Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, of which Meier is a member. Bicyclists can preregister at the Worthington Area Chamber of Commerce, or registration will be from 8 to 9 a.m. Saturday at Centennial Park.
WORTHINGTON -- Since the Worthington Windsurfing Regatta is also the site this year of the U.S. Windsurfing National Championships -- the most prestigious annual event in the windsurfing race tour -- it is expected to draw competitors from across the nation, and perhaps a few international sailors as well. There will certainly be a few windsurfers coming from north of the border, as a group of Canadians has become Regatta regulars.
WORTHINGTON -- What will the best-dressed attendees of the Windsurfing Regatta and Unvarnished Music Festival be wearing this year? A Regatta T-shirt, of course. The official event T-shirt goes on sale today at the Worthington Area Chamber of Commerce office and will also be available throughout the festival, June 11-15, at the Daily Globe tent on Sailboard beach. This year's design features a screened picture of a windsurfer with bright blue and yellow lettering on a white shirt.
FULDA -- On a recent afternoon, Earl Jackson strolled the halls of Maple Lawn Nursing Home and the attached assisted living facility, stopping every once in a while to "chat" with one of the residents. Earl isn't a stranger to the facility, but he isn't a resident, either. He's a visitor -- a canine visitor, a LARGE canine visitor -- and Maple Lawn is just one of several stops he makes each week as a therapy dog. Accompanied by his human caretakers, Terry and Dorothy Westerbur of rural Dovray, Earl also pays regular visits to the Westbrook Good Samaritan Home, Royal C.
WORTHINGTON -- The Worthington Regional Hospital Auxiliary is looking for a few good women -- and men, too. The volunteer service organization needs to bolster its ranks to keep providing a variety of services to the hospital.
WORTHINGTON -- In past years, the Unvarnished Music Festival has drawn musical talent from far and wide to entertain the crowds in conjunction with the Worthington Windsurfing Regatta. This year, Worthington's sister city, Crailsheim, Germany, is sending its Buergerwache musical corps to take part in the festivities as part of the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the partnership. Worthington's mayor, Alan Oberloh, extended the invitation to the band after participating in anniversary festivities last year in Crailsheim.
WORTHINGTON -- Worthington is quite well represented in "A Camera, Two Kids and a Camel: My Journey in Photographs," a book recently published by National Geographic. On pages 8-9, there's photo of a horse-drawn farm wagon making its way through the fields outside of Worthington. A woman participates in a stretching class at a Worthington retirement home on page 41.
Phyllis Bruns and Kathi Duerr don't get offended if people don't recognize them at first glance. In fact, they take it as a compliment. Substantial weight losses have transformed the two women, body and soul. "I sent my sister-in-law, who lives in Florida, a picture of me now, and she said, 'I got this picture in the mail, and I don't know this woman,'" Phyllis shared gleefully. Phyllis and Kathi are members of the Fulda TOPS -- Take Off Pounds Sensibly -- group.
At the tender age of 14, Larry Brixius decided he wanted to devote his life to the church. "I told the priest before I told my parents," recalled Brixius, who grew up on the family farm near Wells, the oldest of six children. "He was coaching baseball, and we were on our way back from a game. I was the last one in his car, and I told him, 'I think I want to be a priest.'" The priest helped Brixius break the news to his parents, and he was soon on his way to seminary in LaCrosse, Wis.-- straight out of grade school. "It was not the norm to go at 14," Brixius said. "I'm called a lifer.