In previous columns, I have mentioned the importance of leadership as a critical ingredient in the success of a community, and we do have some men and women in our county that are leaders. The citizens that I consider heroic are making important time, talent and treasure investments in our community. Here are a few projects that I consider of particular significance:
Sleep Inn. This project, mostly funded by local investors, beautified an entry corner to Fort Scott and our historical district. It also gave us a newer hospitality facility that leaves many of our visitors with a positive impression of our community.
Fort Scott Munitions. This was a big investment by a local family in another blighted property at the entrance to Fort Scott. While they are putting the property to great use, they may never fully recover all the money they invested in the property to make it usable.
Hole in the Wall. Yes, this project had some public funding, but local investors took a risk and developed an attractive building out of an eyesore across from the National Historical Site. Remember the concrete blocks and poles on Scott Avenue?
E3/Common Grounds. A large amount of money has been put into this project by a local couple, restoring an important intersection in the historical district, and attracting several new businesses into the development.
Bandera Stone. This Bourbon County company announced a new showroom location in Uniontown. This is a much needed investment in the Western side of our county.
Dairy Queen. Another local couple making a big investment to build a brand new building on South Main that is accessible by many who are just passing through. Our county has realized a nice increase in sales tax collection at the expense of this couple’s increased overhead.
Eddy Street. Two local men bought a couple of blighted properties in the 300 block, west of the Presbyterian Church, and built two new houses that are a significant upgrade to the neighborhood. About two years after they were built, the men sold the properties at a loss. Heroically, they embarked on the project, not to make money, but to make our community a better place.
Good Neighbor Action Team. This group of community leaders have made countless personal investments in Bourbon County communities, usually below the radar. Yard clean ups, paint jobs, wheel chair ramps, and other community improvements have been performed dozens of times by these generous Bourbon County stars.
The list could go on. Investments like these by local people are the lifeblood of our community, and represent commitments above and beyond the call of duty. It is another goal of Bourbon County REDI to help facilitate future investments like these all over our county, not only by local heroes and heroines, but by newcomers as well.