Working towards a better Mason City

Each day that passes, thoughts cross my mind of ideas that would make Mason City a better place to live. Here are some of my thoughts. I would encourage our residents to work at shopping locally. On the flip side of that statement, I would encourage business owners to really work at offering more competitive prices on their goods and services. Shoppers and businesses then become more partners in trade.

Quite a number of years ago, there were days of the week that shops offered discounts off merchandise. They likely didn’t make much money on those days but at least it helped to get themselves familiarized with the local shoppers. Back in the days when there were green stamps, grocery stores offered double stamp days that helped their shoppers fill their green stamp books more quickly so they could trade them in for housewares.

As Americans become more green and eating organic, I would be delighted to see a permanent year round structure where local growers and producers of natural products could market their products. I know this sounds like a Coop but not really.

I would rather see it a non-profit association with any income to go back into helping young growers get started. What holds so many of the entrepreneurs back are the start-up costs. In a far away city I visited a very large indoor market that was owned by the city and each kiosk was rented on a seasonal basis to marketers. There of course were restrictions on what could be sold and all of the indoor advertising was generic. It looked like one big standardized marketplace. The place was buzzing with business.

Presentation is very important. This is why I really encourage people to get out in their yards and really work on keeping their yards and gardens manicured. The same goes for business owners. Yes, I know there is always work in progress but a finished product must be maintained. The Manor just re-surfaced their parking lot, trimmed trees and bushes, and did some additional landscaping. That whole section of the block looks great.

Anyone can talk about improving our city, but the real challenge is for our citizens to step up to the plate and just do it!