To the Editor,

The gentle cooling winds enveloped us as we set up our chairs. Not quite dark but getting there quick. With our belly full from the great meal we just had at the College Street Pub, we settled in and waited for the movie to start. Soon the stars began to appear against a muted dark blue sky. Our fellow residents began to arrive carrying lawn chairs with their excited children in tow.  The street quickly filled up with those who put down the Ipads, got out of their houses and committed themselves to spend some quality family time. A sense of community gently wrapped itself around downtown, something  missing for a long time — but beginning to find itself once again. And all was good.

I got up and went over to the Lions Club concession trailer and bought some water and some candy for my wife. Soon a line formed for snow cones and the sound of the ice grater chugging added to the festive atmosphere. People began to enjoy the snacks they had brought with them and the kids began to run around. Friends recognized and greeted each other with hugs and handshakes. The night’s darkness finally allowed the movie to be seen against the screen and the show began.

A quietness sometimes broken by the nostalgic chiming of the courthouse clock or a train whistle accompanied the concentration of the gathered citizenry as the credits and opening sequence played. I moved my chair closer to my wife. In a time honored trick of yawning and stretching my arms up high, I lowered one around my wife’s shoulder. She gave me the look and gently elbowed my ribs. Then smiling, she snuggled into me. There we were, just two very experienced teenagers watching a movie with some of our towns folk. It was golden. And it was free.

There are lot of things we can do to make even the simplest of things seem extraordinary. Participating in living in our town is just one. Being part of the community by going to events or becoming involved in local government or even by keeping our entertainment dollars at home can enhance the quality of life here in Waxahachie. We can make the difference  between this being our home or it just a place where we are buying a house. This being where we want to be or just a convenient place to stay. Can we make this a community with our own sense of identity or become just another Dallas suburb? Depends on what we want to put into it. Speaking strictly for myself, I prefer the former.

Alan Fox,