There was measurable snow in Duluth, Minn., last weekend. The average date for snow there is Oct. 24, which made the first snowfall about a month early. That makes me wonder if we are going to get an early winter, although according to the calendar, we have just gotten into fall. In kind of a topsy-turvy year, I guess we shouldn’t be surprised at anything. I hope fall is not short changed this year. It’s my favorite time and already it’s way too short for me.
But no matter what Mother Nature throws at us, there’s very little we can do about it, so I guess we’ll just stand back and watch.
There are some things we can do, I guess. In the old days, we used to remove the screens and put storm windows on the house. I don’t think many people have storm windows anymore, but it was a fall ritual, at least in the North.At our house, we do a few things. Most importantly, we bring in the pink flamingoes. Billie Stewart used our house (at least most of it) on the courthouse mural and she put pink flamingoes in the yard, so we feel we should have them. Billie also put a Tucker in the driveway. Somehow, I would prefer to have a real Tucker than two pink flamingoes.
Most people are not aware that the Tucker automobile has a history in Neosho. Preston Tucker, who produced this remarkable car, had a son, Preston Tucker, Jr., who was an engineer at Rocketdyne here in Neosho. There’s a picture of Preston, Jr., in a book that was published a few years ago in honor of 50 years of aviation and space in Neosho.
At the time his dad was working on building the car, Preston, Jr. was a small boy. There was a movie “Tucker: A Man and His Dream” which told the story of Preston Tucker. It was a good movie about the man, his family and, of course, his automobile. Jeff Bridges was cast as Preston. Christian Slater played the part of Preston, Jr.
The bottom line is, that’s why Billie put a Tucker in the mural, and I’m glad she parked that car in my driveway. And I don’t even mind the flamingos.
Today will mark the end of the event at Newtonia as we celebrate the sesquicentennial of the First Battle of Newtonia. I hope many of you had a chance to get out there and help us celebrate. We’ll be doing it again in two years as we celebrate the Second Battle of Newtonia. With one celebration under our belts, the next one should be a breeze.
Page 2 of 2 - I’m sure that everyone who has worked so hard for months to make this celebration possible are a bunch of tired puppies tonight. Congratulations to Don and Denise Jessen who headed up the entire celebration and to all who worked to make it happen.
Kay Hively writes a weekly column for the Daily News.