I have to admit that I am very optimistic about 2011 but, if the truth be told, Augusta had some pretty interesting features and situations over this past year.
For example, if someone had told me a year ago that a paper that promotes people who get arrested would be so hugely popular, I probably would have laughed. I'm still baffled by it, but to each his own. The most frightening fact about this past year was the crime rate. It seemed like every other day somebody was getting shot, robbed or murdered.
There were marches and seminars and meetings and summits and rallies and blogs to stop the violence, but it continued.
Then there was the good, the bad and the just-a-little-sad stuff. Augusta saw the entertainment scene go through a tremendous transformation under the leadership of the general manager of the James Brown Arena, Monty Jones and Global Spectrum, with record sold-out shows and new events. Augusta also enjoyed the return of hockey to James Brown Arena and became a media bonanza when Tiger Woods returned to the Masters.
This year Augustans dealt with the opening of a new library and the closing of the National Science Center, the expansion of Medical College of Georgia and the passing of Rosa T. Beard.
In 2010, we lost one superintendent in Richmond County and gained another, lost one principal at Laney High School and got another one, and continued the tradition of the legacy of the Godfather of Soul with the James Brown turkey giveaway and toy giveaway.
When I think about all the things that happened in our community over the past year, I am more proud than ever that I live in a city where people still care about each other and try to make a difference. We live in a city where changes come quickly and sometimes unexpectedly.
As a community, we have all learned to stop, drop and roll with the changes.
This is the second largest city in Georgia. We can certainly see all the growth and change in store with the construction of all the highways and infrastructure and the expansion of Fort Gordon and MCG.
So, what's in store for me in 2011? Here's what I know: Whatever the coming year has in store, I am a product of this community and I'll know how to stop, drop and roll with it.