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home : columnists June 22, 2017

Picnic will help neighbors meet
We are so glad that the City of Noblesville decided to keep Seminary Park as green space for our Old Town neighborhood.

It is a place we love, and smile about every time we drive by or walk to the park.

We are happy to see events being scheduled there this summer. One of those events is Noblesville Preservation Alliance's annual Summer Picnic, which is this Sunday.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017
No humans allowed down under
My home office is downstairs, which was just a cellar when we moved into the house 25 years ago. We invested a little money to fix it up, so then it became a basement. I guess you could call it a finished basement. But apparently it wasn't finished, because the builder we hired said that for a few extra bucks he could add some decorative touches and then we could call it our lower level. We didn't have "that" kind of money.
Wednesday, June 21, 2017
With barbecue season heating up, time to review food safety
Summer barbecue season is in full swing and it's a good time to review food safety. Food-borne illness is something that almost all of us have experienced at some point in our lives.

Food-borne illness is defined as more than two people having a similar illness with evidence of food as the source.

Monday, June 19, 2017
Local summertime fun available
Indiana's tourism industry directly employs 155,000 Hoosier and supports 202,000 jobs statewide, according to the Indiana Office of Tourism Development. Between lodging, food and beverage, shopping, transportation, entertainment and recreational spending, tourism in the state generates $11.5 billion.
Monday, June 19, 2017
Vietnam veteran sacrifice honored
A sailor from Noblesville, who died 35 years ago, is being honored today in Washington, D.C.

John Allen Brooks was a husband, a father and a Navy Corpsman serving with the U.S. Marines in the Vietnam War. He died as a result from exposure to Agent Orange.

His daughter, Emily Brooks, and her mother, Peggy Beaver, Brooks' widow, are attending the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund In Memory ceremony this morning.

Saturday, June 17, 2017
Holding Space
It is a spiritual practice that has finally been given a name, holding space, or in simpler terms, "listening." For some people it is difficult to do, others find it extremely uncomfortable. Holding space is a pause, being comfortable with letting someone just be who they are.
Saturday, June 17, 2017
It was a 'Perfect Wedding' proposal
When Noblesville's Zach Buzan was trying to figure out the perfect way to propose to his girlfriend, Katie Gipson, the pieces slowly started falling into place.

What if Zach were cast as the bridegroom in The Belfry's "Perfect Wedding" comedy?

How perfect would that be?

What if he would propose to Katie right after the bows on opening night of the play?

How perfect would that be?

Friday, June 16, 2017
Confessions of a Catnip Cultivator
Having written mostly about local history lately, I figured it was probably high time (thyme?) for me to do a garden column and renew my credentials as Jerry Snyder's "Young (HA!) Gardener Friend."

I've been fascinated by herbs ever since I first encountered them growing outside William Conner's kitchen when I worked at Conner Prairie.

Friday, June 16, 2017
Bryan Clauson legacy will be honored today
Noblesville racecar driver Bryan Clauson would have turned 28 years old today.

But he tragically lost his life on Aug. 7, 2016, following a dirt-track racing accident in Belleville, Kan.

While the day is an emotional one for his family, fiancée and friends, his birthday will be celebrated in a big way both far and near.

Thursday, June 15, 2017
Bryan Clauson legacy will be honored today
Noblesville racecar driver Bryan Clauson would have turned 28 years old today.

But he tragically lost his life on Aug. 7, 2016, following a dirt-track racing accident in Belleville, Kan.

While the day is an emotional one for his family, fiancée and friends, his birthday will be celebrated in a big way both far and near.

Thursday, June 15, 2017
It all started with an old Chrysler
Nearly 30 years ago, Noblesville's Dave Shank bought a 1954 Chrysler, just for a hobby.

He drove the car in the Fourth of July Parade and the Noblesville Christmas Parade. Realizing that there were a lot more car enthusiasts out there besides him, he struck a deal with the festivals' organizer that if she would give him names and numbers of old-car owners, then he would organize all antique-car events.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017
Not bummed out!
Last week I had the honor of presenting to Carl Erskine the Heritage Place Award, given to six senior Hoosiers each year for their lifetime service to the Indianapolis community. For those who don't recognize the name, Carl is a retired banker from Anderson, Indiana. He also previously pitched for the Brooklyn Dodgers team that won their first-and only-World Series in l955.
Wednesday, June 14, 2017
Theater now our summer home
Today is the first day of rehearsals for The Belfry Theatre's summer kids production.

I know this because my daughter auditioned a week ago for Disney's "The Little Mermaid." The theater's Apprentice Players' production will present a total of eight performances the last weekend in July and the first weekend in August.

Monday, June 12, 2017
Incidents of Meningitis infections down dramatically
The mother of one of my patients asked me to write about meningitis. First of all, I want to state that meningitis is a very rare condition. The incidence of bacterial meningitis in the United States is about two to three per 100,000 people per year, while viruses cause about 11 cases per 100,000 per year. It used to be much more common when I did my training in the late 80's, but with the advent of preventative vaccines, the incidence has dropped dramatically.
Monday, June 12, 2017
Preparing Hoosiers to enter the workforce
Indiana's unemployment rate is continuing to decrease each month. In general, economists agree that a rate below 5 percent indicates a strong economy. Currently, our statewide unemployment rate is at 3.6 percent. This is lower than the national average of 4.4 percent, and it is lower than all four of our bordering states.
Monday, June 12, 2017
To celebrate or not to celebrate
I haven't really celebrated my birthday since I hit a certain milestone. But I will let you do the math.

When my birthday rolls around every June 10, it's always strawberry-picking time. This year, the strawberries, the first fruit of the picking season, arrived three weeks ago, due to an early spring.

Saturday, June 10, 2017
What pastors do depends on who you ask
There are a couple of great memes out there that portray the descriptions of, "What Pastors Do." The photo is typically divided up into six sections. This particular meme made it around, with fervor, in my pastor peer group because it definitely hit at a truth that, "What Pastors Do" is not only misunderstood but also misinterpreted and ultimately difficult to articulate in a simple job description. The job description also varies from denominational, cultural and congregational boundaries.
Saturday, June 10, 2017
Toasted and roasted
"Are you sitting down?" my sister asked, calling from New York.

"I'm 70 years old," I said. "It's a pretty good bet that I am sitting any time you call."

"Well, you need to hear this. Our brother is about to do something a 66-year-old man seldom does at this point in his life."

Saturday, June 10, 2017
More on Noblesville's Early Jewish families
Continuing with Noblesville's early Jewish families . . .

When Harry Levinson left for Indianapolis in 1905, he sold his store to Moses Haas of Tipton.

Moses was a Civil War veteran who originally came from Germany. He'd had a retail clothing business in Tipton since 1871, M. Haas & Sons, and after he bought the Levinson store, he operated it as a branch of his Tipton establishment, placing his son, Albert, in charge.

Friday, June 9, 2017
Osbornes honored in Museum opening
Steven Osborne pointed to a blue-striped cotton dress worn by his maternal grandmother, a dark print wedding dress worn by his paternal grandmother and a blue and white quilt that she started 70 years ago. He also showed a rocking chair and a top hat that belonged to this paternal grandfather. And vintage photos of his Osborne ancestors, a family Bible and an old shutter taken from the house of a family farm.
Friday, June 9, 2017
Memorial bench will honor Don Roberts
When we drive into the Noblesville Airport this Saturday for the annual June pancake breakfast fly-in, by habit, we'll automatically be looking for Don Roberts sitting on his favorite bench, acting as an official greeter.

He always flirted with all of the girls in his sweet harmless way. Especially the little girls, like my 11-year-old And sometimes, he would wear a red clown nose and make everybody laugh.

Thursday, June 8, 2017
Bed Race rolls out the creativity
This year's Darlington Bed Race brought out more creativity than I've ever seen before.

Noblesville Preservation Alliance, which had maids and butlers pushing a Victorian lady on a canopy bed, wasn't the fastest in the race. But the entry, which competed at a leisurely pace, was the most popular among the audience crowded along Ninth Street.

Monday, June 5, 2017
Swimmer's Ear can be caused by more than just swimming
Summer is just around the corner which means we'll start to see patients complaining of "swimmer's ear." We tend to see more of this malady in hot, humid weather, but it can also be brought on by other conditions as well.

The medical term for swimmer's ear is otitis externa, indicating inflammation of the external ear. This is in contrast to the more common otitis media, or infection of the middle ear (the air filled cavity just behind the ear drum).

Monday, June 5, 2017
Strengthening Hoosier education
With the month of June already upon us, it's time to celebrate our local high school seniors who are finishing up their final days of school. Congratulations to all of those who worked hard to achieve this success. Our schools and educators deserve recognition for the achievements of our students. This year, I supported new laws to help them continue leading our students down the path to a prosperous future.
Monday, June 5, 2017
Last day of school bittersweet for us
Thursday was an emotional day. It was the last day of classes for the school year.

But this was more emotional than any other year. Because it was also the last day of classes for elementary school.

Yes, my 11-year-old graduated fifth grade at North Elementary School.

Saturday, June 3, 2017
Come out, support girls lacrosse tonight
I was so thrilled when Noblesville's Larry Palmer contacted me about Noblesville Girls Lacrosse.

He is volunteer board president of the Noblesville Lacrosse Club, which manages the boys and girls high school lacrosse programs. He is also the proud dad of a senior player.

Tonight and all day Saturday, Noblesville Lacrosse Club will play host to the Girls High School State Lacrosse Finals at White River Elementary Soccer Fields.

Friday, June 2, 2017
Noblesville's early Jewish families
When it comes to religion, Noblesville has always been predominantly Protestant. However, over the years a handful of Jewish families have also made their homes here, despite the closest synagogue being several miles away.

Although few in number, those families have produced several individuals who've played significant roles in making Noblesville the city it is today.

The first Jewish residents to leave their mark were Newman Levinson and his wife, Minnie.

Friday, June 2, 2017
Lions pork chop sign of summer
This week is one of my favorites.

While it's still another 20 days until summer officially arrives on the calendar, this weekend really feels like the beginning of summer here in Noblesville.

Besides today being the last day of school and the kickoff of the Summer Reading Program at Hamilton East Public Library, a big tent goes up today on the Courthouse Square as Noblesville Lions are setting up tables and chairs for the Club's annual Pork Chop Dinner on Friday.

Thursday, June 1, 2017
Saluting veterans on Memorial Day
Monday was a beautiful sunny day. Particularly for a Memorial Day celebration on the Hamilton County Courthouse Square.

It was the largest crowd that I recall. Noblesville Mayor John Ditslear voiced the same observation.

As I looked around at the crowd of people, there were families with kids, familiar faces from the community and a lot of veterans.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017
I'm one of the 'kneedy' people
As soon as Mary Ellen made plans for our last vacation, I made an appointment with the orthopedist. My left knee was killing me and I didn't want to be a drag on our daily activities. My knee problem goes back to an old football injury in college. I was drunk and fell out of the stands during Homecoming.

When I arrived at my appointment, I asked why my former doctor had unexpectedly retired.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017
Bryan Clauson, we're thinking of you today
I know that I will find myself thinking of Noblesville's late Indy 500 racecar driver Bryan Clauson as I sit and watch today's 500 Festival Parade in downtown Indianapolis.

And again on Sunday, as we, in tradition, listen on the radio to the Greatest Spectacle in Racing, the 101st running of the Indy 500.

Saturday, May 27, 2017
Memories and Memorial Day
"I am the true vine, and my Father is the vine grower . . . Abide in me as I abide in you. Just as the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me. I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing."
Saturday, May 27, 2017
Is it finally pool weather?
How many gallons of water does it take to fill a swimming pool at Forest Park Aquatic Center? Would you guess 250,000 gallons for each of the two main pools?

And how many hours do you think it takes to fill the two pools? More than a day? Actually 27 hours per pool, using firehoses hooked up to fire hydrants.

Friday, May 26, 2017
The secret language of cemeteries
Many of you will probably be heading to one or more of our local cemeteries this weekend to decorate graves for Memorial Day.

While you're there, take a moment and look around. I can pretty much guarantee you'll spot some fascinating and unusual monuments, especially if the cemetery has burials from the 19th century.

Friday, May 26, 2017
Seniors too busy to get into trouble
I love to hear about kids caught being good.

That's why I always try to attend the annual Hamilton County Commissioners' Youth Service Award ceremony when organizer George Kristo invites me.

The scholarship contest attracts some of the county's most impressive and praiseworthy seniors, each representing his or her school district, with the focus on recognizing outstanding service by drug-free youth.

Thursday, May 25, 2017
Bryan Clauson, we're thinking of you today
I know that I will find myself thinking of Noblesville's late Indy 500 racecar driver Bryan Clauson as I sit and watch today's 500 Festival Parade in downtown Indianapolis.

And again on Sunday, as we, in tradition, listen on the radio to the Greatest Spectacle in Racing, the 101st running of the Indy 500.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017
Never too tired when turning 11
Tuesday, we celebrated my daughter's 11th birthday.

We also celebrated her birthday on Sunday at Noblesville's Forest Park. And with her friends 11 days ago at the Hamilton County Sports Complex's A Plus Gymnastics Center in Noblesville.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017
Never too tired when turning 11
Tuesday, we celebrated my daughter's 11th birthday.

We also celebrated her birthday on Sunday at Noblesville's Forest Park. And with her friends 11 days ago at the Hamilton County Sports Complex's A Plus Gymnastics Center in Noblesville.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017
Kiwanians will decorate Square with 400 flags
I've said it before, but I always love to go downtown Noblesville on Memorial Day weekend to see all of the American flags flying around the Historic Courthouse Square.

This year, more than 400 flags will be flying. And our wonderful Noblesville Noon Kiwanis Club is to thank.

Monday, May 22, 2017
It's time to start thinking about heat and health
Despite not getting to Memorial Day yet (thanks to all those who gave the ultimate sacrifice), it's time to start thinking about the dog days of summer. Although I don't see a significant number of heat-related emergencies in my office, many patients do end up in emergency departments suffering from exposure.
Monday, May 22, 2017
New policies to help Hoosier families
Raising a family presents immense joy, as well as many challenges. Our state offers a variety of resources to support the well-being of families, and this session, new laws were enacted to provide additional help to those who may be facing difficulties.

Some may not be aware of the state's helpline center that can be reached at any time by dialing 2-1-1 or visiting www.in211.org.

Monday, May 22, 2017
Easing the anxieties of middle school
I haven't cried yet. But my daughter has less than two weeks of elementary school left before she officially becomes a middle-schooler.

On Wednesday, she joined her fifth-grade class and took a tour of Noblesville East Middle School, where she'll be a sixth-grader this fall.

Saturday, May 20, 2017
Love is Worship
We were born to worship, which means we were born to love. Church is one of the primary places that we learn how to do it. Yes, yes, I know what your thinking, "isn't the home where we first learn about love?" Bear with me. What if we thought about our homes as little chapels; places where we learn about what love really is in a Biblical sense. Often times, I have referred to Sunday worship as a place to learn how to be the rest of the six days a week.
Saturday, May 20, 2017
Drew's new band to play fest tonight
I've known Noblesville's Drew Hawk since the days when he played guitar with the late Matt Wariner and would perform and hang out at the Noblesville Moose Lodge and The Sandpiper.

So when Drew told me that he put together a new band, I wanted to share it with our readers.

But first, I had to ask how he came up with band's name, Tone Lab Society?

Friday, May 19, 2017
When Lucky chased the checkered flag
Eighty years ago this month, Hamilton County was buzzing with excitement over the news that the first ever locally-owned car was set to race in the 1937 Indianapolis 500.

If you guessed Lucky Teter had something to do with that, you'd be right.

Friday, May 19, 2017
Remembering Irving Heath this Saturday
Marilyn Heath is hoping that her father's friends and Noblesville "family" will come out this Saturday to celebrate the life of Irving Maxwell Heath.

Her father, a former longtime Noblesville resident, moved here in 1946 and joined the Noblesville First United Methodist Church. He was a founder of the Boys and Girls Club of Noblesville and Cancer Services of Hamilton County and was a Sagamore of the Wabash recipient.

Thursday, May 18, 2017
Spring into Master Gardeners' plant sale
It's finally warm and feels like springtime. And that also means it's time for planting.

If you're as ready as I am to start planting garden and looking forward to eating fresh Indiana tomatoes right out of the garden, then you know it's time for the Hamilton County Master Gardeners' annual plant sale.

I can always count on Master Gardner Alice Overton to remind me about the plant sale, which is three days away, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. this Saturday at the Hamilton County 4-H Fairgrounds in Noblesville.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017
Letter perfect
There should be a law against having phone numbers that denote words instead of, well, numbers. Hello! It's a phone number, not a phone word. I hosted a TV segment last week for a national organization that is dedicated to educating people about a common, but potentially serious, illness. Their phone number spells the name of the disease.
Wednesday, May 17, 2017
Learning to appreciate motherhood even more
Growing up an only child, I could always count on spending Mother's Day with my mom.

And I did every year, until I went away to college. Then, being at home for Mother's Day seemed less important.

After college, when I was living on my own, sometimes I would go to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to watch race qualifications with friends instead of heading home to see my mom on Mother's Day. I didn't give it a second thought because, apparently, there were a lot of other race fans doing the same thing.

Monday, May 15, 2017
More summer safety
Readers have asked me to address more summer safety issues. It's great to see kids and adults out on their bicycles now that the weather has warmed up (especially kids who aren't sitting on the couch). This will undoubtedly result in more bike accidents. Some of the saddest experiences I had during my Family Medicine residency were to have to take care of kids who were brain injured as a result of a bike accident.
Monday, May 15, 2017
New laws promoting public safety
Fostering safety in our community and throughout the state is very important. This session, the General Assembly enacted legislation to promote public safety by punishing cyber criminals, cracking down on impaired drivers, addressing the illegal drug epidemic and strengthening penalties for pharmacy robberies.
Monday, May 15, 2017
Mom, Mommy, Ma, Madre
Everyone has a mom. You cannot be alive without having a female type person give up one of her eggs for life beyond herself. This is the miracle of Mother's Day, and a reason to believe that there are miracles born each day. I once heard Rob Bell, author of "Love Wins," explain what has to happen for a human life to be born, he did an excellent job, you can find it on YouTube. First, the miracle that we have made it to maturity. For some of us, it is a miracle that we are alive today, and perhaps it was a mother who helped you to stay alive. But then when it comes to the biological, anatomical miracle of how a new life is conceived is another huge miracle.
Saturday, May 13, 2017
Everybody plays, everybody smiles
Hinkle Creek Elementary first-grader Jackson Miller smiled as he watched American and checkered flags waved during this chilly Friday morning at Hare Chevrolet Field in Noblesville.

The 7-year-old competed in a 25-meter slalom, 50-meter run, long jump and softball throw with his peer and best friend, classmate Gabe Carney.

Saturday, May 13, 2017
A "Dynamite" story about Noblesville's First Methodist Episcopal Church
I've seen a number of odd newspaper stories while researching this column, but I don't think an article ever made me sit back and say "WHAAAT???" quite like the one I recently stumbled across which told of Noblesville's First Methodist Church being on a communist "hit list."
Thursday, May 11, 2017
Tour, market, park grand opening on
Let's try this all over again. I'm talking about Downtown Noblesville events that were on the calendar for last weekend but were postponed until this weekend, due to continuous rainfall, flash-flood warnings and safety of guests.

Noblesville Main Street's Upstairs Downtown and Noblesville Parks & Recreation's Salsa for Salsa event are happening tonight.

Thursday, May 11, 2017
The Pink Ladies are 'Making a Difference'
Noblesville's Linda Franck is all about making a difference. The North Harbour Garden Club member founded The Pink Ladies cancer support group after being diagnosed with breast cancer.
Thursday, May 11, 2017
The Club was just for boys in old days
The Boys Club started in 1949 in Noblesville, a vision of the late Irving Heath.

Heath wanted "to have a place for youth in our community to go, to have a safe place and be surrounded by caring adults," said Becky Terry, executive director of the Boys & Girls Club of Noblesville.

The Club, back then, was just for boys. Sen. Luke Kenley remembers the early years very well.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017
Better roads for our future
On average, Hoosier drivers spend nearly $500 each year on vehicle repairs caused by poor road conditions. With almost 10 percent of the state's major roads in disrepair and 21 percent of bridges considered structurally insecure, it was time for lawmakers to invest in our transportation infrastructure. It was determined an additional $1 billion a year is needed to update and maintain the roads and bridges in our state.
Monday, May 8, 2017
'Inclusion Revolution' celebrates all abilities
Noblesville's North Elementary staff members sing and dance through the school hallways and onto the playground. Teachers Dave Kimmel, Jamie Owens and Billy Fama, and school principal Robert Lugo, don their Beatles getups, including wigs and musical instruments.

A little crazy, maybe. But this staff-created "Inclusion Revolution" music video that will be played on the school's morning news program this week is a fun way to bring awareness to encourage "inclusion."

It's among dozens of activities planned during Noblesville Schools' annual Disability Awareness Week. This week is all about including everyone, not only this week but throughout the year, said Mark Booth, the district's director of special education.

Sunday, May 7, 2017
Scotland Art Exchange comes to City Hall
It doesn't seem so long ago that my fifth-grade daughter was in pre-kindergarten at Noblesville Methodist Preschool.

Cicero's Chris Holt has been a preschool teacher there for 25 years. But I've known her longer than that. She used to bring in theater news items to the Noblesville Daily Ledger when I was the lifestyle editor there, and she was directing plays at The Belfry Theatre in Noblesville.

Saturday, May 6, 2017
Made to Worship
We were made to worship. Not only has every culture since the beginning of time had rituals, we too carry on many rites and rituals today. Some rituals are religious in nature, and some seem to be worldlier.

In thinking about worship, I believe that every movement of our lives is connected to the idea of worship. What do we value? What gives us joy? What or whom do we love? How do we spend our free time? And what do we think about? In some ways, I think that all of our life is spent worshipping.

Saturday, May 6, 2017
Market to spring new park to life
Noblesville's new Federal Hill Commons is going to be an exciting place to be this year.

That is, whenever the rain clears.|

As I recall, it's always cold and rainy when the Burton Brothers Carnival comes to town and opens for business at the Hamilton County 4-H Fairgrounds, next to Wal-Mart.

The carnival is in town through Sunday. Need I say more?

The grand opening of Federal Hill Commons, the city's fifth park, moved to May 13 due to rainy weather last Saturday.

Friday, May 5, 2017
'Just a regular restaurant for regular folks'
Having written about Syd's a few months ago, I thought I probably should devote a column to the other eatery on the courthouse square which qualifies as a Noblesville institution - the Uptown Cafe, or as it's officially known these days, the Sunrise Café @ Uptown.
Friday, May 5, 2017
Upstairs Downtown offers different view
If you're like me, you often wonder what's inside some of the buildings in downtown Noblesville.

On Friday, you can cure your curiosity by joining Noblesville Main Street's annual First Friday Upstairs Downtown Tour.

Main Street executive director Chris Owens said more than 350 visitors annually attend the tour which offers "different perspectives of downtown, maybe areas where they haven't been before."

Thursday, May 4, 2017
Lupus, 'the great imitator' difficult to diagnose
I had a request to write about lupus. Lupus is the common name for Systemic Lupus Erythematosus. It is an autoimmune disease first described by the physician Rogerius in the 12th Century. There are many opinions regarding the origin of the name. One of the most popular is that the rash on the face of many lupus sufferers resembles a wolf's face. Lupus is Latin for wolf.
Wednesday, May 3, 2017
'Scoop of Thanks,' prayers and more
Today, I'm using my column to let readers know what's happening this week.

If you're attending Thursday's Noblesville Mayor's Prayer Breakfast at White River Christian Church, look for Noblesville Main Street's executive director, Chris Owens. The guitarist of more than 20 years will perform with the WRCC Worship team with Jay LeBlanc and his daughter, McKenna.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017
Janice Robinson is NHS Alumnus of Year
Janice Robinson couldn't have been more surprised Saturday night as she was named Noblesville High School 2017 Alumnus of the Year.

With tears in her eyes, she made her way to the stage, where she was presented the award by NHS Alumni Association president Tim Timmons.

Monday, May 1, 2017
Balanced budget bill signed into law
Gov. Eric Holcomb last week signed into law Indiana's next two-year budget. The plan funding state operations starting in July focuses on education, public safety, veteran's programs, substance abuse prevention and workforce development.
Monday, May 1, 2017
Biting humor
Arriving in my mailbox today was the mid-spring edition of the Hammacher Schlemmer gift catalog, packed with previously advertised items they still can't unload (which I have probably made fun of in past columns), along with some brand new items I am about to skewer.
Sunday, April 30, 2017
NHS Millers come home
This weekend is penciled into my calendar every year. It's when Noblesville High School graduates from near and far come home to Noblesville for the annual NHS Alumni Banquet.

Those who were together for many years of school scattered after each graduation. Usually about 300 annually return for tonight's dinner and reminiscing at NHS.

Saturday, April 29, 2017
Looking back at how this all began
It was about six years ago when my high school friend, Tim Timmons, publisher of The Times, contacted me to see if I was interested in doing a "faith based" weekly column for the paper. I was both excited and a little intimidated at the prospect of writing for a paper, especially in my own hometown.
Saturday, April 29, 2017
Dogs will strut in style, in bandanas
Noblesville's Jane Snyder sits at her sewing machine this week, finishing the last of more than 350 Bryan Clauson green souvenir bandanas for the third annual dog trot at Forest Park.

She made bandanas in four different sizes to fit the array of canines expected to participate with their owners in this Sunday's "Strut 2 Save Lives" fundraiser that brings awareness to organ and tissue donations.

Thursday, April 27, 2017
Courthouse gets its new Christmas tree
When my telephone rang at 7:27 a.m. Monday, I wondered who could be calling me so early. I wasn't surprised when I saw the caller was Hamilton County's building and grounds superintendent Steve Wood.

He wanted to tell me that the new Christmas tree on the Historic Courthouse lawn would be planted that afternoon.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017
Helping military families, college-bound Hoosiers
The 2017 legislative session came to an end late last week. In addition to passing a balanced biennial state budget and a comprehensive road funding plan, which I look forward to highlighting in future articles, policymakers passed new laws providing assistance to military families and lessoning the burden of paying for college.
Monday, April 24, 2017
Billy Taylor made everybody smile
Every year, when we go to the Indiana State Fair, we have to stop by and see if Billy Taylor was working the corn cooker in the alley next to the Coliseum.

If he was there, he was glad to see us. He would pack a half dozen ears of roasted corn in a plastic bread sack and pile them into our arms.

Monday, April 24, 2017
Is it Alzheimer's?
"Dad is getting awfully forgetful - could he have Alzheimer's?" That's becoming a more common question. We are more likely to encounter someone with Alzheimer's dementia as the proportion of elderly in our society increases. Some forgetfulness is normal for most of us as we age. Many of us carry the fear of developing Alzheimer's or another form of dementia as we get older.
Monday, April 24, 2017
The Season of Sneezing
It's once again time to run my annual column on allergies. Many of our readers are probably already cursing the annual return of allergy symptoms. The pollen levels in Indiana are already ramping up as spring (hopefully) arrives for good.

Allergies are a major problem for many people. When allergy sufferers are asked about their quality of life, they generally rate allergies as more bothersome than heart disease and sometimes even cancer. There are many causes of allergies, but I want to focus on the seasonal type.

Saturday, April 22, 2017
Billy Lee Taylor, formerly of Noblesville, Sep 15, 1945 - Apr 7, 2017
While dressing for a graveside service on Tuesday, my husband said, "You know we might be the only ones there." Soon, I would be commending to God's care, someone I had "known" but never met, I did not know his family, had not seen the man for at least 20 years and yet I was getting ready, just the same, to say words of comfort, and give this gentle man the dignity of being remembered as a child of God. Billy Lee Taylor was somewhat of an institution back in the 70's.

Saturday, April 22, 2017
Tonight's gala is for pet lovers
While I like to visit the Humane Society for Hamilton County, I can't help but feel a little sad for the animals in their cages.

Coonhounds are howling, terriers are barking and cats are meowing, all wanting your attention in hopes that you will take them home.

Friday, April 21, 2017
Lagoon Lodge, little libraries and lots more
It's officially spring - Gatewood's is open again!

When I picked up my onion sets, Bruce Gatewood passed along a bit of cautionary weather lore I'd never heard - the day it thunders in February, it will frost in May. (Yikes! When WERE those storms last February?)

Friday, April 21, 2017
See NHS art tonight at park
It was pretty easy getting back into the swing of things following my two-week vacation.

And while this is my first column after my return and I'd love to share how I spent my time off, I'll save that for another time.

Rather, I'm encouraging the community to come out tonight to Noblesville's Forest Park Inn, where Noblesville High School students will have their artwork on display.

Thursday, April 20, 2017
See NHS art tonight at park
It was pretty easy getting back into the swing of things following my two-week vacation.

And while this is my first column after my return and I'd love to share how I spent my time off, I'll save that for another time.

Thursday, April 20, 2017
Sleep discussion revived
Remember Arshid Chowdhury? I wrote about him years ago when he invented something called a sleep pod, a high-tech structure that can still be seen in several airports around the country. Crawl into the enclosure, and you can catch 40 winks in the middle of the day for about 20 bucks, or about 50 cents a wink. (Before we all got so politically correct, I'd have made a funny joke about my reputation of innocently-and inexpensively-flirting with the ladies.
Wednesday, April 19, 2017
The Season of Sneezing
It's once again time to run my annual column on allergies. Many of our readers are probably already cursing the annual return of allergy symptoms. The pollen levels in Indiana are already ramping up as spring (hopefully) arrives for good.

Allergies are a major problem for many people. When allergy sufferers are asked about their quality of life, they generally rate allergies as more bothersome than heart disease and sometimes even cancer.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017
New laws fostering a healthier Indiana
Among the new laws enacted this session are policies focusing on the health of Hoosiers. Cervical cancer, strokes and meningitis have caused multiple deaths in our state, so lawmakers took action this session to address these important public health matters.
Monday, April 17, 2017
'Be the change you want to see in the world'
It is reasonable to think that Gandhi was the first to utter the words, "Be the change you want to see in the world," because all of the intranet sources say so. In reality, the quote was tweaked so that it could read better on a bumper sticker, on the back of your Honda Civic. The quote actually sounded more like, "If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world changes towards him . . . We need not wait to see what others do."
Saturday, April 15, 2017
Licking Germany 'To a Frazzle'
You're probably already aware that this month marks 100 years since the United States entered World War I.

"The war to end war" had actually been going on in Europe since July of 1914, but the United States was officially neutral until Germany sank several U.S. merchant ships and attempted to get Mexico to join in the conflict against us.

President Woodrow Wilson finally asked Congress for a formal declaration of war against Germany on April 6, 1917.

In the d

Friday, April 14, 2017
Death by cookie? First ever Oreo-related lawsuit filed
We hear a lot about frivolous lawsuits, but we don't hear nearly enough about the delicious ones, so here's a tasty bit of gossip: A guy from Kentucky is suing the company that makes Oreo cookies. He asserts that Oreos are slowly killing him. So what's the problem? This sounds like a fun way to die.
Wednesday, April 12, 2017
Final weeks of the 2017 legislative session are here
This month welcomes the final weeks of the 2017 legislative session. At this point, conference committees are meeting to discuss amendments to proposals and working to reach agreements on the final form of proposed new laws. At this point, Gov. Eric Holcomb has signed 23 bills into law, including measures to help our military members, reward our long-serving public safety officials and prevent drug use in our state.
Monday, April 10, 2017
Pointers on taking care of inevitable summer sports injuries
The summer sports season will be starting soon as will gardening and other outdoor chores. If they haven't already, weekend warriors will soon be doing all sorts of things to keep doctors who treat musculoskeletal injuries busy. I want to give everyone some pointers in how to take care of the inevitable sprains and strains.
Monday, April 10, 2017
Moving legislation through the process as session winds down
At this point, the governor has signed 20 bills into law. He is considering a handful of others, including proposals I supported to decrease cervical cancer rates in the state, help veterans and remove financial barriers for those heading off to college.
Saturday, April 8, 2017
Choo Choo Choose the Nickel Plate Railroad
Having devoted a column to the history of Seminary Park, it seemed only right to also provide a little historical background on our other endangered historic site, the Nickel Plate Railroad.

What we know as the Nickel Plate began as the Peru & Indianapolis Railroad. It was the first railroad laid in Hamilton County, and one of the first in Indiana.

Friday, April 7, 2017
Taking time off to clown around on spring break
I want to thank you for stopping me on the street or in the grocery store or at community events, telling me that you enjoy reading my columns in The Times. Or that you have a story idea for The Times. Or that you want to invite The Times to your event or club meeting or get-together.

For many of you, The Times is your first read in the morning, five days a week. But for the next two weeks, you'll have to read The Times without me.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017
Yellow Journalism
The nice lady offering free samples at Costco asked if I wanted to actually buy a box of the quiche I was nibbling on (after I had eaten six pieces). I'm kind of a health nut, so I didn't purchase any; they just had way too much sodium and saturated fat.

An hour later, my Costco cart was laden with soft drinks, garbage bags, a snow tire and a year's supply of salsa.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017
Are these trains on right tracks?
Am I opening a can of worms when I ask, "Why can't everybody get on the same train?"

The Cities of Fishers and Noblesville in February proposed to convert 9.2 miles of the historic Nickel Plate Heritage Railroad line to a greenway trail for an estimated $9.3 million.

The Indiana Transportation Museum, a nonprofit located in Noblesville's Forest Park, and operator of the FairTrain, announced last week that it would submit a bid to once again be the operator of the rail line, which runs from Indianapolis to Tipton.

Monday, April 3, 2017
Thyroid problems common in family medicine setting
I've received a request to write about thyroid gland problems. Thyroid problems are common in a family medicine setting. For those who don't know what the thyroid gland is or does, keep reading.

The thyroid is an endocrine gland found in the front part of the neck below and to the sides of the Adam's apple. Endocrine glands produce hormones and secrete them into the bloodstream. The hormones then travel around the body and trigger various biologic processes by interacting with cells in different tissues.

Monday, April 3, 2017
Providing safeguards to victims of domestic violence
Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to American women between the ages of 15 and 44. In fact, combining the total number of women who are in car accidents, mugged and raped doesn't outnumber those who are hurt by their partners in domestic violence situations. This is alarming and an important public policy issue that needs to be addressed.
Monday, April 3, 2017
A special prayer for Lent to open hearts and minds
Like many churches around the world, Roots of Life Community is intentionally submerged into the season of Lent. We are in week four, of the six-week journey. Typically, fasting, repenting, and reflecting on our life as a disciple of Jesus mark this season. Some of keep journals of daily blessings and challenges; some of us have given up tasty foods, have given more time for prayer, and maybe have delved into a Bible study specifically related to Jesus' journey to the cross.
Saturday, April 1, 2017
DAR awards good citizens
Being honored as a Daughters of the American Revolution Good Citizen is so much more than good grades.

It means you've given back to the community, to your school, to your church and to your family, and that you were voted on by your peers and by your administrators.

Each year, the Daughters of the American Revolution Good Citizen Award is presented by Noblesville's Horseshoe Prairie Chapter of DAR to one graduating senior.

Westfield's Sami Fassnacht is the 2017 DAR Good Citizen of the Year.

Saturday, April 1, 2017
Historical marker will honor driver
While the late Noblesville Indy 500 racecar driver Bryan Clauson traveled the world in racing, it was Noblesville where he called home.

Courtney's Kitchen and Forest Park were two places he loved in Noblesville. So it's no surprise when the Indiana Racing Memorial Association announced this week that Courtney's will serve up food for next weekend's unveiling of an historical marker in Forest Park honoring Clauson's legacy.

Friday, March 31, 2017

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