It’s a gray and gloomy day as we await the dawn that will bring on St. Patrick’s Day tomorrow. The festivities this year will be a bit quieter than others I have celebrated. Staying home is the word of the day for me. But I do have a drop or two of Irish blood in me, being a bit of a mutt, I guess, so I do like to celebrate the Irish Saint. Will postpone my quest for the perfect Ruben sandwich for a while. I do want to wish everyone a happy and healthy St. Paddy’s Day, however you celebrate it.
We will also welcome in Spring this week. The Spring Equinox is a little early this year as it falls on the 19th. So happy Spring Equinox to you too. It would be good to see the sunshine on Thursday as a little sign of good days to come. We’ll see.
Because of the spread of COVID-19 the Rector schools from Pre-K through 12 will be closed until further notice. Meals-to-go for students can be picked up each morning from 7:30-8:30 at the High School Pavilion. A Food Backpack will also be available to students at the pavilion on Thursday, March 19 from 11:30 – 12:30. Thanks to the RSD staff that is working to provide for our students. Younger people and children are not at high risk for the Coronavirus unless they have chronic respiratory problems like Asthma or chronic Bronchitis or have had pneumonia. So, don’t worry, just take precautions and take advantage of the time at home to do some fun stuff and learning online where it is available. There are some fun craft ideas online too. Sort of like an extended and unscheduled holiday.
The Junior Class sponsors have announced that the 2020 Prom will be postponed until further notice as per CDC recommendations. I know that is a disappointment, but the sponsors are looking out for your safety and they will reschedule it at a safer time.
We don’t know how long this is going to last so we need stay positive in the face of inconvenience and remember to count our blessings.
Congratulations to the RHS Cougars of the month for February Ben Owens and Paige Butler, two students who excel in kindness and helping one another. Thank you to Keith Hill and Shannon Haywood of Rector Downtown Drug and Medical Supply for their never-ending support.
Census packets were received this week. Fill them out asap. You can also respond online or on the phone. BE COUNTED.
Rector has also canceled our Vietnam Veterans Welcome Home Parade for this year. It is a disappointment for me as I enjoy interacting with our vets so much. Those Vietnam Vets, like me, are in a high-risk category for the Coronavirus, however and we don’t need to endanger them again. Next year we will be back to celebrate these deserving men and women.
It looks as if the Coronavirus (COVID-19) is going to be with us for a while. There is incorrect information circulating so, I urge you to get your information from the CDC https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/ or your health care provider to stay safe. Although there is no need for panic, it’s a good idea to be prepared. For most people the virus presents mild symptoms, similar to those of a cold. It is extremely contagious, however and people with compromised immune systems or a tendency to respiratory issues or have had pneumonia are at higher risk. Also, elderly people (60 years or older) should be careful. The virus could cause them to be very ill and it is sometimes fatal.
If you think you have been exposed to the virus or that you have the virus, you should contact your personal doctor and arrange to quarantine yourself at home. There is no treatment unless you develop respiratory distress. Your doctor will be able to advise you. It would be a good idea to have enough food on hand for at least a few weeks and plenty of rehydrating drinks, like Gatorade or Pedialyte to make sure you don’t get dehydrated from the fever. If you think you have the virus, call your doctor before you go to the office. Currently 22 people in Arkansas have tested positive for the virus. Be careful Stay home if you can and avoid crowds.
Number one preventative is to wash your hands often and don’t touch your face with your hands. Let’s stay well and look out for one another.
A continuing reminder that the Census Bureau is looking for census takers for the Rector area. If you are looking for some extra money and working your own hours and getting paid while you are in training, you might do well to look into this temporary part time job. It pays $17.00 per hour plus .58 cents per mile. You can set your own hours and paid training is provided. There are several different positions open. You can view the job descriptions at www.2020census.gov/jobs and can submit an application online. I will post information frequently between now and April 1.
There is more posted on the www.Rectorarkansas.com website and on the Rector, Arkansas Facebook page. Check it out. And be sure to complete your census when it arrives.
That’s it for this week. I am always updating the Rector website. Please take a look at the web page and let me know if there are updates or changes that need to be made. I do take suggestions and criticism fairly well. www.rectorarkansas.com . It’s your page for your town, so give me your input.
What else is going on that you would like to see in this column? Give me a heads up and I will share it with everyone else. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org . Phone number (870) 595-4997.
God bless our troops.