CULTON: It’s the most wonderful time of the year

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. No, it’s not Christmas. It’s Horizons time!

If you are not familiar, Horizons is an annual publication put out by Leader Publications to serve as a community yearbook for southwest Michigan. Our staff spends months selling and reporting features to tell the stories of our residents during the past year.

Now after months and months of hard work, the time for Horizons to publish is almost here. Mark your calendars, because Horizons will be published inside your newspaper on Feb. 27.

This is one of my favorite times of year. Sure, it may not be a holiday in a traditional sense, but I still get excited for Horizons’ publication day as though it were Christmas morning. There’s just something so special about being able to share something you are so proud of with the community, and this year, the community took the focus of Horizons.

With a theme of “Putting the Unity in Community,” you will find more than 100 pages filled with stories about the resilience our communities during the COVID-19 crisis. We will have stories of residents spending months making masks to go across the country, nurses who put their health and safety on the line to help others, teachers who put in extra time and effort to ensure their students got the education they needed and many more.

I’m not going to lie, putting Horizons together is a lot of work — even more work when in the midst of a global pandemic. However, being able to tell the stories of all of the amazing people in our communities makes it all worth it.

I hope you all will be just excited to read these stories as I — and our whole team — was to write them. While not everyone will go as far to call opening up their papers next week just like Christmas morning, I hope we can all agree that taking time to celebrate our communities makes any time of year the most wonderful time of year.

News

Niles City Council approves three social district permits

Berrien County

COVID-19 UPDATE: Michigan reports 867,341 cases, 18,338 deaths

Dowagiac

Dowagiac Police Log: April 30-May 3

Berrien County

LMC offering community ESL classes beginning May 17

Edwardsburg

Ontwa Township Board tables short term rental ordinance vote

Dowagiac

DUS honors retiring faculty, staff members

Buchanan

Buchanan master planning enters home stretch

Berrien County

United Way of Southwest Michigan honors community’s resiliency with annual awards

Berrien County

COVID-19 UPDATE: Michigan reports 865,349 cases, 18,239 deaths

Cassopolis

Cass County 4-H auction items available for viewing

Berrien County

Man who led police on two-state chase headed to prison

Edwardsburg

Ontwa Township/Edwardsburg Police Log: April 26-May 2

Buchanan

Buchanan Middle School threat under investigation

Berrien County

SMCAA celebrates Community Action Month

Berrien County

2021-22 Strengthening Schools grant cycle open

Cass County

Chase leads to the capture of larceny suspects

Education

EPS reports no threat to students following report of suspicious individual

Berrien County

LMC supports Biden’s plan for free community college

Dowagiac

Mobile medical unit providing free ultrasound, STD testing

Berrien County

Niles man, Buchanan woman share experiences from COVID-19 vaccine clinics

Business

Greater Niles Chamber of Commerce celebrates business award winners

Dowagiac

Dowagiac Police Log: April 30-May2

Dowagiac

Dowagiac National Guard Hosts Food Truck Muster

Brandywine Education

Tri-County Head Start planning new Cass County facility