‘City Spirit’ Abounds In Calhoun

Once again, the rest of the state is taking notice why Calhoun County is such a great place to live.

Once again, the rest of the state is taking notice why Calhoun County is such a great place to live.
Wednesday night, the Town of Vardaman will receive the statewide City Spirit Award for towns under 10,000 population at the Mississippi Municipal League’s annual convention in Biloxi.
Vardaman is being honored with the award for the James B. Parker Youth Sportsplex – a four-field baseball/softball park that rivals any you could find in much larger towns.
Mayor Casey described the Sportsplex as a “true community effort.” Volunteers have been involved since the very beginning from moving tons of dirt into the flood land, to building the concession stand, dugouts, laying sod, fences and parking lots. If it needed doing, the people from Vardaman were there to get it done.
No one was there more than James Marshall Casey. Rarely did a day pass when Mayor Casey wasn’t the lead volunteer doing whatever was defined as the task of the day.
Mayor Casey championed the effort from the beginning, working for the grant from the Land and Water Conservation Fund. He kept the town board informed and engaged, scraped and secured all the matching funding that was needed, encouraged and led the community’s involvement, and stayed on top of the work being done to insure the town was getting the best price for all its materials.
It would be difficult to find a mayor of any town more directly involved with work being done. Mayor Casey has never viewed himself as an overseer, but pre-fers to get his hands dirty with the task itself – whether it’s building a new entrance to the cemetery, dressing up Main Street, or building a Sportsplex for the kids of the community.
Brad Spencer, Vardaman summer league president, ended his summation of the project  for a video to be shown at the MML convention, by saying “I’m proud to be from Vardaman.
He should be, as we all should be to hail from Calhoun County.
Vardaman’s much-deserved honor this year isn’t a first for this county. Both Bruce and Calhoun City have won the same statewide award from the MML in recent years.
This county doesn’t lack for “spirit” and it reaches far beyond the boundaries of Bruce, Calhoun City and Vardaman.
It’s evident in the way Calhoun countians come to their fellow man in need, just look at the number of fundraisers listed on The Journal’s calendar each week.
It’s evident in our many festivals such as Bruce’s Sawmill, Calhoun City’s Ace Cannon, Vardaman’s Sweet Potato and Banner’s Bluegrass.
It’s evident in our many special events, such as Relay For Life and Big Creek’s Redneck Christmas Parade.
It’s every where you look, and the state is taking notice.

You may email Joel McNeece at joelmcneece@tycom.net

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