Cliquey Community

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Let’s define a clique first. A clique is defined by a small group of people, with shared interests or other features in common, who spend time together and do not readily allow others to join them.

We all have groups of people that we share interests with but just because they are small groups who share interests doesn’t make them a clique. A few groups around our community here include: the arts council, race track fans, dart players, dance club, Lions Club, and the list goes on and one. These groups don’t leave people out. They all share the same mission and encourage involvement. And how about getting people involved when something happens to a family in Hand County. How many people help that family that aren’t in their “clique” by giving money, food, cards, prayers, help them farm or whatever work needs to be done.

Last Sunday, hundreds of people gathered to show financial and emotional support to the Teason family. People and local businesses donated goods and services, bought items on auctions and came together who weren’t in the Teason clique. I attended the event and looking around the filled gym made me so proud of our area and how we come together.

Since moving here in 2009, I have seen no evidence of any group in our community, excluding anyone from their activities. I have in fact seen the opposite. I have seen invites on social media and the Miller Press inviting anyone to be involved. Everyone needs to pay attention for those invites. I feel like everyone needs to take some type of accountability. You need to know what’s going on. Read your paper, attend events, and talk to all kinds of community members. Involvement can’t fall on the shoulders of someone else for you to get involved in a group, it falls on your shoulders to get involved.

You also need to show up with a positive attitude. We all know life is hard. But less complaining is good for everyone. It’s so refreshing to spend your time with people who don’t waste time and energy on complaining. You can almost feel your spirits lifting around someone who is willing to see the good in things. Those people who see the good things, bring in other people, who see the good things. Personally, I make the choice to spend my precious time and money with people who are positive. I make that choice to spend time with groups and people that are positive and making a positive impact.

My experience is just one but I do have other communities to compare- Freeman, Spearfish, Deadwood, St. Lawrence and Miller and let me tell you this, St. Lawrence and Miller have been the most welcoming and generous I have lived in by far. All of the other communities were wonderful but they aren’t even on the same playing field of generosity and involvement of this community. I can’t tell you how many of my peers from other communities admire what our community has for working together. If we were truly a “cliquey community,” would they admire us for working together?

Let’s change the conversation from, this is a “cliquey community” to “how do I get more involved or how do we get more people involved?” And let’s all start taking some accountability. Let’s not complain but instead be more positive and make more of an effort to be involved. I am proud to live in this community and be involved in great things. I hope you remember the great accomplishment and relationships that this community has from working together before you refer to it as “cliquey.”

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