A lot of you know that I grew up in Sterling. I moved out to Michigan in 1981, met my husband at college and we lived there until four and a half years ago.
When I was younger I wanted nothing more than to get away from this "one horse town." I hated that everyone knew everyone. I wanted a life of fast cars and the big city lights. Well, guess what; the big lights kept me up at night and I never did learn to keep my car door locked.
One of the side benefits of leaving the small town where I grew up and then returning is that I gained a true appreciation for all the small, everyday joys of living in a close-knit community.
One of those wonderful moments of appreciation happened on Halloween. I spent a few hours helping out at and enjoying the Sterling Elementary School's Trunk-or-Treat. There were the usual assortment of tiny ghosts and goblins, princesses and fairies, but there was so much more.
There was a teacher that had retired but still came back to hand out candy and visit. One of the trucks was decorated as a recycle wagon and the kids got a little lesson on helping our environment with their candy. Central Emergency Services was there with a truck complete with those always impressive lights and sirens. Skyview High School kids, many of whom used to be students at Sterling, came back with a haunted bus. There was a young man who is recovering from an accident decked out in his hockey gear passing out high fives with a huge smile. I saw several families with three generations present at the party.
All the candy was donated; the PTA served hot chocolate and hot dogs. No one asked for money, no one cared if the kids went around the circle collecting candy twice. When I was younger this is exactly the type of event that would have caused me to roll my eyes at the small town quaintness. Instead I found myself loving every moment of it; watching the kids, sharing a cup of cocoa, visiting with folks I had not seen in a long time.
Sure, we have to drive a while to get to big town shopping. Yes, there are times I wish I lived closer to a city, but little joys like a parking lot full of smiling people eating tiny chocolate bars and laughing more than makes up for those things for me.
This Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., the Sterling Senior Center will be hosting its annual Christmas Bazaar and Bake Sale.
There will be lots of beautiful hand-made items for sale as well as all the fabulous baked goods. The Elderberry Caf will be open both days if you feel like having a little lunch of a cup of coffee while you shop.
For more information, please call the center at 262-6808.
I am always looking for community news or Sterlingites to visit with. Drop me a call or send me an e-mail.
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