Daily Republic Editorial Board
Great green gobs of disgusting, smelly algae filled Lake Mitchell over the summer. With long stretches of hot, dry weather in eastern South Dakota, we heard several cries that this was the worst state the lake's ever been in. We know this: It sure was nasty at times. And that's why we're getting anxious for Omaha-based water quality specialist Fyra Engineering to present its findings on the lake's problems to the City Council soon.
Today's front page has no news on it. Our readers already know that, of course, because it's quite possible they gasped when they unfurled this edition on their doorstep. For those who are shocked or disappointed, let that feeling sink in for a moment, because this is what would exist every day in a city without a newspaper.
CHEERS to the new Corn Palace murals going up alongside the walls of the attraction, a vibrant display of color we haven't seen since they were last replaced in 2015. Visitors to Mitchell will be in for a treat next year when they see the murals, and we hope the city learned its lesson to replace the signature feature of the town's most prominent attraction each and every year. With new murals and a brand new plaza on what used to be a portion of Sixth Avenue, we're excited to see whether Corn Palace attendance spikes in 2018.
HISSES to the slow-moving progress to get a building near Mitchell's Main Street back in order. In early August, a block of Third Avenue was closed due to safety precautions from a building crumbling. While there was never a specific timetable set for the road to be opened and the building to be fixed, we've heard several people in town are starting to get impatient. And, rightfully so.
About one year ago, a small group of students battled to keep the Mitchell High School newspaper together. It was significant extra work, some of it thankless. But the hours added up. They captured important moments in journalistic forms, via news stories, opinion editorials and photography. They did it for their readers, the students and faculty at MHS and others who were interested in what was going on at the high school. Most importantly, though, they recognized the importance and value of a newspaper.
CHEERS to the corn crop's comeback following what felt like a devastatingly dry summer. Early indications were grim for South Dakota corn, with a lengthy drought putting future yields at risk. Despite the drought, the nation is looking at its third-highest corn yield in recorded history. Although South Dakota is expected to see a 16 percent drop in its corn yield, according to the National Agricultural Statistics Service, it's a much better outcome than many had predicted.
The lack of public events at the Mitchell School District's performing arts center should be viewed as a learning experience, not as a failure. Last week, we reported that the $15.3 million performing arts center went unused for public performances while students were away on summer break. That's right, a $15.3 million building owned by a public entity was not shared with the very public that made it possible. Although, to be fair, it was used for a few camps for students.
The city of Mitchell may be hurting its own case for more police officers. Long have we heard the calls for more police officers in Mitchell. But a recent policy enacted by the city of Mitchell shows the city either has enough officers, or their time isn't being managed correctly. Mayor Jerry Toomey, joined by Chief of Public Safety Lyndon Overweg and City Attorney Justin Johnson, recently decided to station a police officer outside of the door to council chambers at City Hall during closed-door executive sessions. Here's the city's reasoning behind the decision:
CHEERS to the 10 new South Dakota Hall of Fame members who were inducted this weekend in Chamberlain. The Daily Republic wrote features on three of this year's inductees, but all 10 are worthy members of the prestigious honor. And we hope all 10 inductees and the attendees to the events enjoyed this weekend's festivities in Chamberlain. And while the type of person who finds their way into the S.D. Hall of Fame is typically humble, we hope they were showered with the praise they deserve for their contributions to our great state.
Performance Pet Products' recently approved $20 million expansion is fantastic for Mitchell, but the way the company went about the project wasn't.