The Dexter Forum is a light-hearted approach to “what’s going on” around Dexter. All topics are welcome and discussion ensues for a few minutes and then it’s on to the next thing. The meeting meets twice a month and lasts one hour, sharp.
The rules are relatively simple, 1) Be nice. No yelling or criticizing is allowed, and 2) If you have something political to say, you have to stand on a small plywood stump about an inch thick.
As John Hansen, who co-leads with Karl Fink, says, “The goal is to have people leave feeling better in some way.” And it works, kind of like the way a breath of fresh air works.
The following are moderator John Hansen’s notes:
“Nothing like an imminent election to roust out the troops on a beautiful fall morning.
“I do my best to be ‘fair and balanced’ with these notes. That’s why Karl lets me do this without his direct oversight. But sometimes my personal opinion slides in like last time when i opined that the an appeal of the tax status of the Wellness center was ‘unlikely’ when in fact the process was already underway. The city council will ask the Michigan Supreme Court to hear an appeal. No more predictions.
“Jim Carson, one of the five candidates for Dexter city council, won the toss and stepped up on the stump first. Jim is an incumbent with a particular interest in transportation issues. As you know by now stump speeches are not summarized. You just have to be here to take part in these interesting discussions.
“Speaking of candidates, Gretchen Driskell, the democratic candidate for congress was present and got a chance to meet and greet. We welcome all candidates as group participants and will offer up time on the stump as we get closer to election time.
“Paul Cousins then took his turn on the stump. Paul does not currently hold office but has a long history of public service.
“Ed Francis gave us an infomercial about the wine tastings that he does for The Sand Hill Crane Winery at the Dexter cider mill. Most of our infomercials are pitches for non-profit fundraising events or government meetings but Ed is a businessman and the winery is a profit oriented operation and we are happy to help out. Think Elmo’s ping pong palace without the singing.
“Mark Olexa reminded us of the Dexter Winter Market (an indoor farmer’s market) that is held at the Dexter Senior Center on the same Saturdays as the Forum.
“We had a brief discussion about the fire services issue on the ballot in Webster Township.
“Michael Champ told us about the next ‘Coffee and Conversation’ session at St. James Episcopal Church on Thursday November 16 beginning at 6:30 PM. The subject for this session is Pipelines.
“Be prepared. Occasionally we have a few minutes to spare at the end of the meeting and we just call upon someone to bring us up-to-date on their activities. So Doug Marrin ‘volunteered’ to tell us about his new role as a writer for WeLoveDexter.com. We have few sources of local news and we let Doug know about our support of his work.
“Two housekeeping reminders: There are coat hooks on the wall just outside our room. If you bring a chair in from the lobby please return it to the lobby.
“The next meeting of the Dexter Forum will be on Saturday, November 18 at 8:30 AM at the Dexter Wellness Center.”