Reflecting on 2020 almost seems dangerous, but as a writer, it’s what we do. It was a year I'm pretty sure none of us will forget...
It was a year in which we shared memes about toilet paper and words like “new normal,” “pivot,” and “pandemic” became everyday words. It became a year where less people wanted to be on social media but online became our best form of communication. For WIDA, it meant we got to make promotional videos about each town for towns to use for grants, for realtors to use with clients, and families to share with friends. (If you haven’t seen them, go to www.WIDAIowa.org and click on your hometown.)
It was a year where podcasts and Netflix were binge-watched/listened to and reading books happened again. Lol. At WIDA, we did a few snaps and over 100 blog posts about couples for Valentine’s Day, businesses that were opening, shopping guides for important holidays, places to go during COVID, respected veterans for Patriot’s Day and Veteran’s Day, and quite an array of Pott. Co. volunteers! Shining a light on deserving people in Pott. Co. is the easy part! Getting to all of them is the hard part! Lol.
It was a year in which people who could give gave more than ever! Crescent’s Toy Drive was the biggest ever! Impact Hill hit their goal on their shoe drive! Giving Tuesday brought in the most it ever has! WIDA actually got to partner with amazing groups like SHARE Omaha to make that possible. We got to co-host with TS Bank, Golden Hills RC&D, and SWIPCO on the first ever Southwest Iowa Community & Economic Development Forum before COVID hit. We also got to work with TS Bank to do cash mobs for Silos in Treynor and The Painted Camel in Macedonia.
It was a year where shopping local seemed more important than ever. Some people did it for the first time. Our grocery stores fed us and our shops found us toilet paper and Clorox Wipes. In fact, in the midst of chaos, WIDA brought you a comprehensive list of food establishments in rural Pott. Co. which even inspired us to go bigger in 2021 with an online directory!
It was a year when events were few, but finding good people that go above and beyond became the focus instead. When we couldn’t go to games, we learned to embrace the trails and parks and plan staycation days instead. It was a year where closets were cleaned out and donations were made to the Pott. Co. Recycling Center.
It was a year where the focus really was on our little piece of the world…
As we barrel into 2021 with the promise of vaccines and normality, let us rejoice in the fact that we live in a place where family is still first, jobs are still plentiful, and helping your neighbor is still the right thing to do. So let us shop local (trends show one-of-a-kind, hand-made items are in). Let us appreciate when an event happens and the volunteers that make it. Let us find the hidden gems in our county.
Let us continue to be the light!
Happy 2021 from all of us at WIDA!