The most wonderful place to live
Bella Vista is the most wonderful place in which to live … and to love. The people are great. The amenities are great, and the city is one to be proud of. But, why do I say this now that I live back home in Burlington, Iowa? Well, I’ll tell you.
Wherever I have lived, I’ve tried to leave it a better place than what I found it. I retired from the Rockford Illinois Park District back in 1990 and my wife Wanda and I moved to Bella Vista shortly thereafter. One of my first items with which to become acquainted was to join the VFW Post. Next, I found out that, even though the POA newsletter said there was a nature trail south of the new golf driving range, I found none. So I went to the recreation committee and volunteered to design one. Nice, they said, but how can we get it built? With VFW volunteers I said. OK, go to it they said.
So with the VFW guys and other interested people over a 10-year period that ended in 2000, there is now a wonderful nature trail and a neat shelter, well used, and now maintained by others. Bella Vista can be proud of its Tanyard Creek Nature Trail. It is a great natural amenity.
But back then, Bella Vista was only a POA and suffering from financial problems, so there must be a solution. And yes, there is one. Forming a city must be the answer. With a city, there was money to be had from turn-back funds depending on the population — almost free money. But how to get it going? Well, a group of us got together and brainstormed. We drew the map and the petition, and I wrote the pamphlet on incorporation. It was only 22 pages long, but it contained all the tenants to become a first-class city. It also listed 15 contacts — people who were also interested in seeing Bella Vista become a city. Oh, it listed the bare necessities. The pamphlet had an attractive green cover and was handed out at local incorporation meetings. Oh, there were some who thought we did not need to be a city, but they were of the history mentality and evidently could not see the future.
Anyway, today Bella Vista is a city that cooperates with the POA to make a great livable place for its residents. And from reading the Weekly Vista, I see the city has a budget of nearly $20 million and even quite a nice cash reserve, and this is all from its great leadership.
And why do I say all this? Just to toot my own horn? No, but to give a little history, to let your readers know where some of those amenities came from and to tell each of you to go and do likewise. It takes everyone to make a great city, so use your talents, go and contribute, make it even better!
I only lived in Bella Vista for 12 years, from 1990 to 2002, and I loved every minute of it. And yes, sometimes I wished I were back there; but, no, not to be. I’m now older than dirt, still a golfer, but I’ve made my last move.
Hooray for Bella Vista. I feel I did leave it a better place than what I found it, and it’s good to go back once in a while to see even further progress.
Dave Wiemer Burlington, Iowa
A farcical ruse
I went to a play last night at the Bella Vista Country Club. It was a farcical ruse about how to control people. A farce is something that is absurd or laughable, and a ruse is an action intended to deceive someone. The cast was the POA board of directors, with the leading characters being Tom Judson and Ron Stratton. The plot was that this board of directors would come together with the pretense that they did not have a preconceived idea that they were going to close the Berksdale golf course. They would invite the public to make comments and give them the belief that these comments would actually make a difference in what the board was going to do.
The public showed up right on queue and made many comments about their concerns over the action the board was proposing. There was standing room only in the theater. The board cleverly used its smoke and mirrors to carry out this ruse. Rebuttals to comments were made using well constructed “facts” that were manipulated to support the board’s preconceived decisions.
For example, one attendee made the comment that no one likes to play the Scottsdale golf course because of the changes that have been made. The response from the board was that the amount of play is up 10 percent and therefore everyone loves it. But …. when you have a lot of 18-hole leagues, and you remove one of the six golf courses they regularly play, the other five are naturally going to have an increase. In addition, the POA is scheduling where the leagues play. It can determine the percentage of increased play at any course it wants.
The premise for the board’s proposal was the old cause and effect theory. The cause here is the rain and the effect is that the Berksdale golf course floods. Since we cannot control the cause, we will eliminate the effect.
The ruse here is that the cause is actually the flooding, not the rain, and the effect is the damage to the golf course. The difference is that we may not be able to control the rain, but we can control the flooding so that the effect — damage to the golf course — is minimized. This, however, because of preconceived agendas was cleverly disguised and never revealed.
As the charade wound down and the surprise vote of the board members was about to be taken, one of the main characters summarized the situation. He said we are about to jump off a rock. We don’t know where we will land, but we are going to jump anyway and hope for the best. In other words, we are going to close Berksdale even though we don’t know yet what we are going to do with it or what it will look like in the future, or how much it will cost. And then, he thanked everyone for their input.
The vote was unanimous to close the course. Surprise!