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Hats Off    |    by
Column dedicated to sharing news about community activities, service projects, and other events that are important to the life of the residents of our "mountain."

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published on 01/01/2003

A January HATS OFF to Signal Mountain

By staff writer

“Baby it’s cold outside.” I can’t help humming that song during the month of January. How does one keep warm when it’s so cold outside? Even if your house has storm windows, up on our “mountain” when the wind blows, you feel and hear it rattling the windows. Doctors say January can be one of the most depressing months of the year – but only if you let it! I say take control of those blues and turn them into a positive force to be reckoned with. Here are some great positive forces happening on our mountain that are just the “cure” for those winter blues!

We live in a beautiful community with an assortment of activities and organizations one can be part of to stay active during the cold winter months. One such organization is the Alexian Auxiliary. The purpose of the Auxiliary is to “offer service, to sponsor entertainment and social activities, and to raise funds for the benefit of the residents of the Alexian Village Health Care Center (HCC) and the Inn.” You may wonder how they go about doing such a daunting task. I say daunting because is takes a lot of work, commitment, and love to make the Auxiliary a success. There are at least twelve special committees that members work on throughout the year. Each committee has a chairman who coordinates the work of the committee. For example, every Monday at 2:00 in the afternoon, Martha Fanning leads residents in a ceramics class; Stevie Newman leads a group of committed people on Thursday mornings from 9:30 to 11:00 in helping residents with their grooming i.e. painting fingernails, etc.; and Helen Wilson is the current chairman of special projects. Christy Ritzhaupt, the Activity Director for the Health Care Center coordinates activities and needs to the Alexian Auxiliary. She attends the monthly meetings to share these needs and invites anyone in the community to participate in the activities she plans. Membership in the Auxiliary is $10 a year due in January. Many of the long-time members of the Auxiliary are now residents of Alexian Village themselves and so the membership outside the Village has diminished. If you can spare an hour a week to a committee and another hour a month for a meeting, and you have the desire to make a difference in a senior citizen’s life, won’t you consider becoming active in the Alexian Auxiliary? Call me if the answer is YES!

At the November Signal Mountain Town Council Meeting, Mayor Althuas expressed the desire that every citizen in the Town of Signal Mountain become aware of the various committees, boards, and commissions that govern our town. Each of these boards or commissions has a chairman and members serve a term. When a term expires, the chairman will make a recommendation to the Town Council who then approves the term of a new person appointed to the board or extends the term of the current person if that is the desire of the chairman. Sometimes the department head will make an appointment to a board and then get the approval of the Town Council. There are currently eight boards: LIBRARY BOARD, chairman Pat Vincent; BOARD OF ADJUSTMENTS & APPEALS FOR MECHANICAL CODES, chairman Terry Boston; BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS, chairman Wallace Davies; CONDEMNATION BOARD, chairman Si Robertson; PARKS, chairman Sam Powell; MOUNTAIN ARTS COMMUNITY CENTER BOARD of Directors, chairman Bernard Wolfe; RECREATION ADVISORY, chairman Don Close; and the HEALTH, EDUCATION, and HOUSING FACILITY, chairman A. Vincent Keyes. The two commissions include: the PLANNING COMMISSION, chairman Dan Saieed; and DESIGN REVIEW COMMISSION, chairman William Wilkerson. In addition there are four regular committees: CURFEW/SIGNAGE; PLAYGROUND; STORMWATER, chairman Williard Wagner; and PERSONNEL. Finally there are various committees, councils, and agencies: HISTORICAL COMMITTEE, chairman Marilyn Garner; SOUTHEAST TENNESSEE ADVISORY COUNCIL on AGING and DISABILITY, chairman Barbara Smith; COUNTRY CLUB LIASON, Ollie Benton; and the SCENIC CITIES BEAUTIFUL COMMITTEE. To learn more about what each of these boards, commissions, and committees do, contact Hershel Dick, town manager. To view a complete list of members of each of these boards as well as the purpose and date/time of meeting, contact the Town Hall. The newly updated Town of Signal Mountain Board and Commission Manual has been completed. Or you can go to the Signal Mountain Community Web Site to view the Manual in its entirety. One important note that the Town Council wanted everyone to know is that these are not closed meetings. The public is invited and in fact residents of Walden and surrounding Hamilton County attend some of the meetings on a regular basis. All the people who have made a commitment to serve should be thanked and know that their service to our town does not go unappreciated.

Still feeling blue? Then check out the Calendar of Events listed on the home page. Some upcoming programs include: the Signal Mountain Library Book Club reading Endurance by Alfred Lansing. The Literature Department of the Community Guild invites everyone to attend their meeting with storyteller, John Maynard. The program at the Community Guild meeting this month is Linda Nelson from Signal Mountain Travel; all women of the mountain are invited. If you know any details to any of the other programs listed in the calendar of events, please call me @ . I will gladly include details in upcoming issues of the paper. Finally, I want to point out one very important event going on this month. Beginning January 10th, Girl Scout Cookie pre-order sales start. This is your chance to get the Girl Scout cookie of your choice. Payment is due upon delivery, which will be in February. Okay. It maybe cold outside, but it’s not here in the hearts of the people of Signal Mountain. With the leaves gone, I can see the ridge across the Tennessee River three streets over and it’s beautiful! Wintertime is a good time. Life goes on, meetings go on, the work of our towns goes on, and we need to be a part of it. What part will you choose?