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When we hear of “it takes a village,” we probably think of how such a concept helps and nurtures young children.

A program last week in Magnolia employed the “village” theory to help young people as they are about to embark on adulthood.

The Columbia County Cooperative Extension Service, banks, local businesses and agencies gave Magnolia High School seniors a shot of reality of the challenges they are about to face in today’s financial and societal world. The name of the exercise was Get Real – Here’s The Deal.

Each senior was presented with a unique fictional adulthood situation. Some were “married” with no children while others had high-paying jobs and working spouses and high-paying jobs. Some were “single” with multiple children and a not-so-high-paying jobs,

In those scenarios the about-to-grads, operating within their income and family situations, were challenged with handling the day-to-day responsibilities they will experience in the real adult world. How to make the car payment and afford the insurance, making the monthly rent or mortgage payment, child-care and health insurance, keeping the lights and heat on, buying furniture and deciding how much to spend on entertainment were among the decisions they had to make.

As they proceeded through the scenarios, including the adulthood nuisance of taxes, the seniors worked to keep positive checkbook balances. At each of the 12 stations, a local expert or professional in a particular field guided the students through their situations.

After completing the seminar stations, many students acknowledged feeling what many adults feel about personal finances – frustrated. But they had worked through the frustration to stay out of the red, something that can be an ongoing challenge in real adult life.

Thanks to the many individuals in our local business community who took the time to share their expertise and experiences to help 200-plus seniors become better prepared to stay afloat in the often turbulent world of adulthood.

Such advice and guidance might have helped many of us avoid the mistakes and pitfalls we encountered as young and even mature adults.


Yet again, we find ourselves obligated to point out to local residents that funds approved by the Magnolia Advertising and Promotion Commission violate, in our opinion, the commission’s restriction.

The commission’s rules state that the use of its funds is for advertising and specify that funding cannot be used to subsidize an organization unless said funds are promoting or encouraging tourism.

The latest violation concerns $9,000 in A&P funding for the Wounded Patriots Fishing Tournament for hotel costs for visiting participants. The funding is not for advertising nor promoting or encouraging tourism and in fact helps subsidize the tournament. We recently published the rules under which A&P can allocate funds. The commission needs to abide by those rules.

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