By: Ernie Wren
I have a big shout out to the young athletes of the Southern Boone school district for giving us a lot of exciting and fun games across the sports spectrum: football, soccer, softball, volleyball, cross country, golf, and cheerleading. It’s great to see these kids out there playing hard and exhibiting great sportsmanship.

Boys high school football is coming up strong. They had a win over Quincy “Notre Dame” last Friday, winning by one point and jumping off to a 4-1 season start. The high school volleyball team is having a winning season (8-4-1) against some strong competition.

Boys’ soccer is also up there at 5-4 against some tough private teams. Girl’s golf is swinging its way to victory at 7-0 for their season. Keep it up Eagles! Some of these updates are from the latest school site posts, so it may have changed a bit, but hey, we are proud of our teams regardless of their record. The new athletic field, stands and scoreboards are amazing! A final shout out to the Eagle Athletic Booster Club for organizing another super season of delicious meals and sponsor packages.

The Hartsburg Pumpkin Festival is just around the corner and will be held on Saturday October 14th and Sunday October 15th. If you will be participating in the kickoff parade you need to contact Jeri, please email her at It will be another exciting year with the Sarah and Mark band at 9:30am (Saturday) along with a Mid Mo Magic Show at 1pm, and the Offroad Cadillac Band at 2:45pm.

On Sunday, there will be a 9am church service, Joe Fry the Guitar Guy at 10:15 am, 1pm Mid Mo Magic Show, and the Jordan Heckemeyer band at 2:30pm. You can check out the “Hartsburg Pumpkin Festival” Facebook page for information on shuttle transportation which has pickups at the Southern Boone Primary and Elementary school parking lots. Cost is $10 per person (round trip), children under 5 are free.

The report from the Missouri Highway Patrol regarding Ashland Police Chief Gabe Edwards has not been released yet. Chief Edwards continues to be suspended with pay and is being investigated by the Missouri State Highway Patrol’s Division of Drug and Crime Control for non-drug related issues as I’ve been told. Hopefully, this will be resolved soon. I’m also hoping we see the completion of the Main Street project ASAP.

Halloween is rapidly approaching and there are some FANTASTIC events “Around Town” to begin planning for. The first is the Boone County Journal’s brand new “Halloween House” decorating contest. The form to enter your home will be available on the Journal’s Facebook site and website, and you can enter from October 1st through October 19th. The judging will consist of a community vote, as well as input from a committee. The top three winners will be featured in the Journal and receive fabulous prizes from ten (10) sponsors valued at over $200!

Also coming up is the annual “Optimist Spooktacular” which is a safe way for kids and adults to enjoy a family-oriented Halloween! The Ashland Optimist Club is hosting Spooktacular on Tuesday, Oct. 31, 5-7 p.m. at the Optimist building, 511 Optimist Drive. Businesses, organizations, families, or individuals are invited to give candy or a treat from their trunk; the rain location will be inside the building.

If you are interested in participating, set up starts at 4 p.m. – please be ready by 4:30, and prepare for 500 visitors. A costume contest will be held at 6:15 with winners announced at 6:30. Prizes will be given to the best trunk! It is also my understanding that a pet costume contest is in the works, and that the Journal has acquired a fantastic new Halloween backdrop for newspaper pictures!

Well, I’m loving the fall weather and pumpkin spice hot drinks! Along with that comes a “Dad Joke.” “Who helps the young pumpkins cross the road?” The crossing gourd! And in the wise words from Linus from Peanuts, “There are three things that I’ve learned never to discuss with people: religion, politics, and the Great Pumpkin.”