Taking pride in the community can happen in many ways.

Some people donate time in cleaning up the parks like the Leadership Committee did this past year or they might support local businesses that add to the community’s well-being.

Any time spent on giving back to the area is good for development, and nothing will send a better message for the future than large gatherings at two new events coming to Clinton in the next few weeks.

The first-ever Lumberjack Festival will debut in Clinton on Saturday at the Sawmill Museum and then the band War will make an appearance at Gil’s on July 30. Sandwich in the Miss Clinton County pageant next weekend, and people shouldn’t have trouble finding anything to do for the next few weeks.

In order for bigger-name bands and continuous events to stay in town, attendance is needed. Luckily, both of these new events provide enough fire-power that it should not only attract people from this community, but also bring in money from outside areas, too.

The Lumberjack Festival will bring in professional lumberjacks to participate in a competition, similar to the ones seen on ESPN. Competitors featuring men and women will take part in events like the Springboard Chop, which involves human beings ascending a nine-foot pole using just an ax and a set of springboards.

I’m imagining that particular competition looks a little different than when I was a pudgy, grade-schooler, climbing the small tree in my grandparents’ backyard.

Many of the people participating in this event are title-holders and compete in global events. These are top-notch people in a field that conjures up memories of Old Clinton.

The reason behind this event is to raise funds for the Sawmill Museum, which is in the process of constructing a massive historical look into Clinton’s past. Recently, I took a tour of the facility, and although many of the displays are not currently available, the future plans would make any citizen in the community excited for what’s to come, once the museum receives enough funding to provide the added educational material.

When the Sawmill Museum is up and running, it will be a first-class look into the rise and fall of the lumber industry in Clinton.

After spending time at the Lumberjack Festival, community members can then relax and enjoy a multi-platinum record-selling band in Clinton.

War, who owns hits like “Low Rider” and “Why Can’t We Be Friends,” will be the lead act in an all-day event at Gil’s on July 30. Without Riverboat Days providing national-level musicians anymore, it’s good to have an outlet in Clinton to see nationally recognized acts.

But, if the community doesn’t support the venture, concerts like this will disappear. Gil’s owner David James expects between 3,000 and 4,000 people in attendance. That’s an aggressive goal, but if it happened, I’m sure the city would see more of these concerts in the future.

Backing long-standing events, like the Miss Clinton County Scholarship pageant, Camanche Days and Dutch Days (to name only a few) are important. But if the community wants to add more attractions, support is vital for all the new offerings around town.

Scott Levine is the Associate Editor of the Clinton Herald. He has been employed with the Herald since 2008. He can be reached at scottlevine@clintonherald.com.

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