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The Lake News Online
  • My view: Westside taking the lead in cleanup

  • As if I had waved my magic “Clean Up the Lake” wand, the Lake West Chamber of Commerce announced it will hold a Lake Road Cleanup Campaign April 26. And, not to be outdone, the city of Laurie is hosting a “Friends of Laurie Day” to do much the same on the same day.
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  • As if I had waved my magic “Clean Up the Lake” wand, the Lake West Chamber of Commerce announced it will hold a Lake Road Cleanup Campaign April 26. And, not to be outdone, the city of Laurie is hosting a “Friends of Laurie Day” to do much the same on the same day.
    Good for them, though their cleanup days are not by my hand.
    This is the Lake West Chamber’s 16th annual cleanup campaign. West side residents are being asked to adopt their lake road and organize their neighbors for a cleanup. Trash bags are being furnished by the Lake West Chamber.
    The city of Laurie is going one step farther. Not only is the city encouraging roadside cleanup, but also a minor facelift to homes and businesses. They’re encouraging residents to weed eat and mow, to paint and stain road-front properties, make minor repairs at the fairgrounds and ball park.
    That makes my push for a cleanup effort on this side of the lake unoriginal, but it still stands. If they can do it, why can’t we?
    As I have preached all too often, we’re all one big happy family here at the lake, and what is good for them is good for us -- and the same goes the other way. Each side has its uniqueness and its independence — and its idiosyncrasies.
    The impetus, of course, is that we need to put our best foot forward as we open our arms to our friends the tourists. The west side gets that concept.
    There are sporadic projects by the Boy Scouts and some churches, but no organized, east side program that would involve the Lake Area and Camdenton chambers of commerce, and the cities of Lake Ozark, Osage Beach and Camdenton.
    There is no shame in copying what the westsiders are doing. Because we eastsiders didn’t have the idea first doesn’t make it a bad idea.
    I’m actually envious (isn’t envy one of the 7 Deadly Sins?) of the west side’s spirit of community. We eastsiders sometimes beat our collective chests about being the commerce center of the lake, yet we don’t seem to grasp the fundamental importance of keeping our own backyard in tip-top shape.
    The expressway is great; the Lake of the Ozarks sign is neat; Prewitt’s Point and Eagles’ Landing are awesome; our supermarkets are tantalizing. We certainly must have more bars and restaurants per capita than most resort areas.
    But the next time you drive down your street, or your lake road, or the Expressway, look at the trash in the roadsides. Look at the state of the empty buildings. Watch for weeds growing in the cracks.
    Page 2 of 2 - This is not to disparage anyone. Time is a rare commodity. Money is fleeting. Pride is fickle.
    Ameren gets it. The west side gets it.

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