Press Talk: There’s always something going on

By Lou Brancaccio, Columbian Editor

Published:

 

Lou Brancaccio is The Columbian's editor emeritus. His column of personal opinion appears the first Saturday of every month. Reach him at lounews1@gmail.com.

Sometimes, you can’t turn around without finding the usual suspects helping our community in so many ways.

Take Vancouver Councilor Anne McEnerny-Ogle.

One day, she’s introducing a noon concert at Esther Short Park, the next day, she’s baking pies for visiting law enforcement officers and — yep— that was Anne scrubbing clean a mural in the city.

Oh, and those pies? They’re illegal in 14 states. Too dang addictive.

But this isn’t a column about Anne. It’s a column about our community and the number of events we hold, not only to bring us together but to assist those who need help.

Hey, government can’t do it all.

I was thinking about all these events when I found myself in a bit of a jam this weekend. Too many things to do and not enough cloning.

Look, if I can be honest, I go to my fair share of events; but when I did the math, I found that I was number 10,034 on a list of folks who are out there doing good things. Yep, that’s chump change compared with so many others.

Still, come today, I’m gonna make it to two important gatherings.

• YWCA

It was 100 years ago that Clark County founded its YWCA branch to provide working women a place to eat lunch, either with women friends or by themselves.

Today, of course, it is much, much more. It helps women in so many ways, from empowering them to fighting against racism to preventing violence.

Tonight, there’s a Centennial Gala at the Hilton with dinner, dancing and dessert to honor the YWCA. Good cause. More good people. Oh yeah, Anne will be there. I’m in, too! But I need to sneak out a little early because …

VSAA

It was 20 years ago when Vancouver School of Arts and Academics was created. Today — in my humble opinion — it is the best school in Clark County. Measure it by any standard you’d like, and it’s at or near the top.

OK, I’m not an objective observer on this topic. Our daughter, Danni, graduated from there in 2006 and after graduating from law school now works in the Miami public defender’s office.

Tonight, several VSAA alumni are holding a fundraising event at the school. (Danni flew in to cheer them on and to go to a wedding shower being thrown for her.)

The proceeds of the VSAA performance will go to help those artists who are just starting out. It’s also being done in memory of Micaela Pewo, who graduated from the school in 2009 and died in 2014.

Here’s the deal. Everyone who goes to VSAA has a love of the arts. No question about that. But most — like Danni — don’t make a living from the arts.

It ain’t easy.

Still, there are those who will make a go of it. Their passion alone should be recognized. But they need more than recognition.

This benefit will help those who have to pay for space to practice, supplies to continue on, and gas money to get to that next gig.

All of the performers have donated their time to help those future artists. All schools have talent performances, but I’m guessing this one will be particularly good.

So I couldn’t miss it.

• • •

In the end, when you turn around in this community, you’re likely to find some event, some function, some opportunity that allows you to get involved. And when you get involved, you’re not only helping others out, you end up feeling pretty good.

So when you spot one you like … be there. And — yeah — you’re likely to run into Anne.