Mike McNeill

Mike McNeill is publisher and editor of magnoliareporter.com .

Someone asked us whether there will be a Magnolia Blossom Festival this year. We don’t know. It’s on the calendar but there’s no telling whether COVID-19 conditions will allow for it. We do know that people are planning ahead as though the normal schedule of public events will come off as planned. We hope so. Within a short period of time, we’ll enter a period in which annual events will experience a second consecutive year of failing to happen. This is bound to have detrimental impacts on those events. We’ll hope for the best. Our return to normal civic life may not happen until the fall. But, we will continue to hope. Our advice is to plan like everything’s going to happen.

Southern Caregivers is remodeling the former Rock n’ Roll Studio on the east side of the square. It will become the medical therapy company’s new Magnolia office. A good example of people and businesses pushing forward with life in the pandemic.

Lt. Governor Tim Griffin has received an endorsement in his gubernatorial campaign from U.S. Rep. Bruce Westerman. Westerman will also serve as honorary campaign chairman for Arkansas’s Fourth Congressional District. Griffin has also hired Carl Vogelpohl as his chief of staff. Vogelpohl was then-congressman Griffin’s deputy chief of staff and district director before becoming his chief of staff in 2014. He advised Griffin in his campaign for lieutenant governor and later became chief of staff to Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge. He left that job to go into consulting.

We have mailed our latest monthly invoices, which means we’ve sent out a new collection of stamps. Gracing our envelopes this month is the “Winter Scenes” collection. Mammals and birds, red barns and snowy scenes are among the 10 different stamps in the collection.

Someone in South Arkansas media must say the words out loud: State Sen. Trent Garner (R-El Dorado) is nutty as a fruitcake. We could pick any number of his actions as evidence, such as yesterday’s dust-up when he objected to insistence that legislators should wear masks. The governor and the state’s top health officials are begging the public to wear masks as a way to control the spread of a deadly virus. But the rambling to which we’ll specifically object is his insistence that last Wednesday’s riot at the U.S. Capitol was a “made-up ‘insurgency’.” What we saw was a planned, deliberate attempt to take over the government of the United States by force. We’ll perform more reality checks on Sen. Garner in the future.

We very seldom have a television on inside our world headquarters. But due to the post-HWMNBN’s insurrection, we’ve been monitoring more TVs on mute lately. Don’t think we could stand most of television with the sound on. Especially the breathless reports about the lives of celebrities we’ve never heard of.

Bunker mentality.

A deer collided with a car near our old home off North Vine a couple of nights ago. It’s a common experience to see deer anywhere along Vine Street.

Mike McNeill is publisher and editor of magnoliareporter.com. Email him at news@magnoliareporter.com or call him at 870-904-3865.

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