Signs promote end to apathy

— Hayden residents have been seeing some signs of the time lately.

Signs that read "Hayden Let's take back our town" are popping up around town, on homeowners' front lawns and businesses' front yards.

A group of people who say they are concerned with the decline in civic and community involvement in Hayden are hoping the apathy they perceive from their neighbors will do an about face. And soon.

"This is our way of trying to get a hold of the people in this town," Hayden School Board President Kathy Hockin said. "We're working very hard to get people aware."

Group members said they tell people curious enough to ask them about their efforts that their intentions are not disruptive or mean-spirited toward public officials.

"We're not trying to cause trouble," Hockin said. "But people complain about the way things are, and then they do nothing."

Hayden resident Joe Schminkey agrees. He said he wants would-be critics to understand that he, like several other people in town, only desire to improve what he sees as a lack of concern about town issues.

"It is our sincere hope and effort to make people more aware of what's going on," Schminkey said.

The next Hayden town board elections are not until May, and the group is hoping that their efforts to raise public involvement will bring out more candidates by the spring. In the last election a few of the board positions were not even filled, Hockin said.

Schminkey said the group asked a few people to put up some of their signs, but more people have approached them about putting up signs in their yard. About 100 signs were ordered, and a few fliers have been posted around town.

Schminkey said he is quick to remember that he at one time cared little about civic involvement. His apathy, however, changed when he finally realized how important it was that people know what is going on in their town, he said.

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