Who remembers the late ABC TV Sportscaster, Keith Jackson? That was his go to line when something unusual or special happened on the field of play.
Kind of feel like that now as the 2021 year quickly comes too close. It began with the pandemic, masks, social distancing and Zoom meetings. The LGA had to adapt to continue with the mission considering the board and a large portion of the membership was in the high risk category and adopt we did.
Our first Zoom membership meeting of the year was in February and we had the chance to meet Leanne Patrick, President/CEO, of the Regional Chamber of Commerce. We would have more opportunities to work with Leanne as the year progressed. Just recently, she joined us for the lake vegetation survey for the second year in a row.
February also marked the sudden passing of Jack Saunders, our long time Treasurer. Besides the personal grief, we had to find someone to manage the finances of the LGA. Jack did everything and we had to find a person with the skill set to do the books, pay the bills, etc. Luly Carson to the rescue and although she didn’t ride in on a white horse, it was the next best thing. With perseverance and patience, she sorted everything out on her own. WWJD was said more than once.
In April we were still in Zoom mode and our attention turned to Jessica Baumann, Extension Associate, Lake Gaston Aquatic Plant Management Program, NCSU. Jess shared with us a summary of the Fall 2020 Vegetation Survey.
Although vaccines were rolling out, we still erred on the side of caution and did yet another Zoom meeting. We heard from Fire Chief Lorenzo Wilkins and 911 Community Task Force Leader Sherry Herzing. Besides the fire tax discussion, Sherry emphasized the correct way call 911 from a mobile phone. Remember location first including state, county, city, subdivision and address. Then the nature of the emergency. With a land line the call is automatically routed to the correct first responder.
As a footnote, we thought Zoom might increase meeting attendance. To our surprise, the “attendees” actually decreased over time. The highest number of those attending by Zoom, minus the directors, was about 12. We normally do considerably better at the F2F meetings.
June finally ended the Zoom experiment. Following CDC and NC/VA health guidelines, on June 12, we had our first in person F2F for the Annual Membership meeting. We had to cancel the hotdog cookout and we ended up washing down each chair and cover the tables but it was good to get back together; first time since March 2020. Our speaker at the Annual Membership meeting, Steve Hoyle, began with why Lyngbya is becoming more of an issue at Lake Gaston. Lyngbya was first identified at Lake Gaston in 1995, spreads easily, and is now known to cover 1200 acres.
The July, August, September, October and November monthly meetings have “zoomed bye”. We were treated at the November 3 meeting when Stacy Woodhouse, consultant supporting the Fitts Foundation, briefed over 50 in attendance about the exciting things that are happening in downtown Littleton.
The Board feels good how we managed to navigate the pandemic. Fingers crossed for a safe 2022. We thank our membership and business members for riding it out with us.
Well, I’m preparing this the second week of November. With temperatures in the mid-70’s, it’s time to go outside and enjoy a boat ride. After all, that’s why we live on beautiful Lake Gaston.
We hope you find this edition of the Bulletin a good read. Please let us know what we can do better or ideas we can include in the next edition.
Enjoy Lake Gaston, be safe and stay healthy.
We live at a special place with incredible people.