Continuing with the theme of change I broached a couple of weeks ago, I want to make it clear that while I think change can be healthy and productive, tradition also has a place in civic life.

Institutional knowledge is helpful. It can save time and help groups avoid repeating past mistakes.

Tradition can be fun. Many of our interesting events are a result of many years of work and planning.

One great local example is Artwalk – transformed over the years from a gallery night to the two-day festival of art, music and culture we enjoyed this past weekend.

Artwalk has changed and grown over the years. By not becoming stagnant, it has survived and thrived.

Tradition can help establish and reinforce identity. Just ask the hard-working volunteers who produce the Texas Cowboy Poetry Gathering every year.

From what I’ve read, a substantial reason for its ongoing success is the group’s commitment to the heritage and tradition of the art form they celebrate.

Tradition is good. But change can be good, too.

The need for change and tradition requires balance. The key is to keep what works and discard what doesn’t – always easier said than done.

The danger is sticking to your guns without knowing why.

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An important part of my mission as publisher of the Avalanche is to be supportive of community events and organizations.

I do this in a number of ways. I volunteer at events, serve on boards and provide sponsorships as a representative of the newspaper.

It’s the time of year that I look at the budget for 2016 and try to figure out what events and groups that we will be able to support with advertising.

While I wish we could offer this to everyone, we have to come up with a budget and stick to it.

If you represent a club, organization or other nonprofit and know that you’ll need some help with advertising promotion next year, please get in touch with me as soon as possible so that we can work out a plan.

It is a joy and a privilege for me to be part of this community. I look forward to serving you again in the coming year.

• • •

Along these same lines, if you’re lining up programs for the coming year and need a speaker, let me know. Apparently, I’m one of the rare folks who don’t mind talking to groups of people, large or small.

In the past year, I’ve made presentations to Cub Scouts and their families, the Unitarian Universalists of the Big Bend and the attendees at the Pilot Club’s annual volunteer of the year luncheon, among others. No one has booed me off the stage yet, so I’ll keep offering.

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It’s a fact of life, living in a town without a dealership, that we have to go somewhere else to purchase a new car.

But the good news is that Brewster County can benefit from your purchase of a car – new or used – no matter where you buy it in the state of Texas.

However, you must designate at the time of purchase that you want to register the vehicle and direct the taxes to Brewster County.

Don’t be surprised if you get some resistance from the dealer, especially in one of our bigger Texas cities.

Friends who’ve done this tell me that it can be a challenge, but it’s worth it – everyone in Brewster County will thank you.

Gwin Grimes is publisher and editor of the Alpine Avalanche. She can be reached at 432-837-3334, or at 118 N. 5th St.