This week was one of recognition. Community members from various walks of life gathered, not once, but at least three times to honor our strengths over the last few days.
On Thursday, volunteers and athletes kicked off the 2014 Special Olympics. They recognized that disabilities don’t mean the end to a life with a celebration of what is still possible. By integrating and working with people who are different than you, our community only becomes stronger.
That evening, many more gathered at the WYO Theater to celebrate the contributions of four individuals to our quality of life.
Those honored as the Keystone Award winners came from varying backgrounds — teachers, musicians, philanthropists and business leaders. All recognized the need to give back to the community that nourished them.
Neighbors, friends and families gathered. Laughs were shared, tears were shed and a burning desire to continue their good work seemed to echo through the crowd. Hope, too, for the future was evident in the young Keys to the Stone honorees.
Then, Friday morning, a breakfast was held to thank all of those people who advocate for our children. This year’s Champion for Children, Reta Onstott, emphasized throughout her life and her work the need to learn from each other. Whether it was placing children in good day care facilities or advocating for women’s rights, she did it all.
Each of those honored this week and throughout the entire year made a difference gracefully and without fanfare.
The strength of any community lies in its people.
If nobody is willing to step up and address issues head on, nothing will get done. The events held this week serve not only to recognize contributions, but to inspire more.
We hope even those who couldn’t attend take notice and give of themselves.
One Keystone honoree said, if you celebrate the good in the world you’ll get more of it. Here’s to the good.