Quick takes – February 17

Support still needed

A campaign by Heritage Fund _ the Community Foundation of Bartholomew County to raise money for substance abuse prevention, fueled by a $500,000 matching grant pledge by Mark and Wendy Elwood, has reached the half-way mark in efforts to raise $1 million locally.

Generous supporters so far have contributed $250,000, with the Elwoods matching that amount. Others who may be considering joining the cause have six more weeks to make their commitments by the March 31 deadline. Donations can be accepted by phone (812-376-7772), online (heritagefundbc.org) or by mail (mail a check to: Heritage Fund/Mark & Wendy Elwood Substance Abuse Prevention Fund, 538 Franklin St., Columbus, IN 47201).

This is a cause and fund worth supporting. Addiction is a growing problem in Bartholomew County, with an estimated 1,000 residents abusing opioids. Last year 30 people died from drug overdoses in Bartholomew County. Contributing to this fund is one important way residents can help.

Making their marks

Two Columbus North High School seniors are off to impressive starts on earning college scholarships. Machi Takeda and Joseph Robinson were honored as the 2018 Brown Music Award winners Feb. 10 at First Christian Church. Both earned $3,500 awards.

Robinson, the vocal winner, performed “Psalm XXIII.” He plans to major in meteorology at Purdue University and join the school’s traveling glee club. Takeda, a trombonist, earned the instrumental award for his performance of Alexandre Guilmant’s “Morceau Symphonique. He hopes to attend Indiana University and study in its Jacobs School of Music.

Their success in the competition could be a sign of more god things to come in their careers.

Democracy in action

Candidate lists for the May 8 Democratic and Republic primaries are now set, and what stands out the number of contested races. That’s democracy in action and good for voters because they have plenty of choices.

Notably, Republicans have three choices for the nominee for Bartholomew County Sheriff, including the incumbent; the Bartholomew County Council has contested Republican races for Districts 1, 2, 3 and 4; and the District 59 state representative race includes two candidates in the Democratic primary and six on the Republican side.

We applaud those who are willing to put their names on a ballot and run for public office because they want to make a difference.