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Bits and Pieces . . .

By George Schmok, Publisher

Let's Play!
I was struck by the evolution of playground design this month as I realized there were more themed playgrounds than good ol' regular playgrounds in the issue. Back in 1985 when LASN first got off the ground, playground equipment was just beginning a transition from galvanized pipe swings and monkey bars to primary-colored poly and steel-based multi-element structures.

In this issue, almost every playground is themed, with forests, downtowns, learning centers et al. . . . Oh, to be a kid again . . .

Another Media Leap for LASN . . .
Ok . . . We get it . . . We do send quite a bit of email information from LASN and her sister media . . . SOOOOO . . . We've changed the weekly newsletter, LandscapeOnline Weekly (LOWeekly) to include most all of our other promotions and have made major changes to its design and interactivity. That means you will get fewer emails from LASN, but more detailed and inclusive information once a week in LOWeekly.

For instance, now all of the articles are displayed in full screen snapshots, providing you with larger graphics and greater information before you click to the full article.

We are also providing advertisers with larger areas to promote their industry specific products.

In addition, you'll now find every LASN (and Landscape Contractor / Design Build Maintain) advertiser listed by product category with links to expanded company and product profiles. There are about 500+ companies linked to about 5,000 easy-to-view, standardized product profiles in every LOWeekly issue.

Now, you will also find targeted articles and messages depending on your demographic and/or geographic profile. For instance if you are a Landscape Architect you will also find calls for LASN editorial, requests to take surveys, event promotions and other action items within LandscapeOnline Weekly.

In a nutshell, LOWeekly now has more news, more features, more events, more companies, more links and more opportunities for you to learn and gain knowledge about the profession.

If you haven't yet, let us know your email and we'll add you to the list. Remember, we will only use your email to send you the E-Newsletter and landscape specific messages matching your geographic and/or demographic profile.

About the Election . . .
With the elections right around the corner, it is important for everyone to be involved, no matter at what level. Now I have purposefully stayed away from political commentary for the past few years, hoping that hope and change would be hopeful change. Here is my opinion . . .

If you receive LASN in the mail, there is an 80%+ chance that you are a business owner. After all, you went to school to become a landscape architect, worked in the field for a time, took your licensing exam and have become, or will someday become, an owner, partner or principal in your firm.

I can't imagine too many of you going through all of that and not wanting to be as successful as possible . . . Willing to pay taxes, but not necessarily for things that should be handled at a more local level. If you get all of your work from the federal government (or from some states), then maybe you disagree with that concept. However, if you are getting your projects from local entities, or if you work in the private sector then you are looking at more closely managed funding.

The difference in this election is the difference between a democracy and a republic. Everyone who ever said the Pledge of Allegiance, knows that the United States is a republic (" . . . and to the Republic for which it stands . . ."). In a democracy the focus is on the equality of the masses and centralized government, while in a republic the focus is on the rights of the individual and decentralized government. That's why every person gets a vote, has freedom of speech, the right to bear arms, and freedom of religion. It is why we have individual state, county and municipal governments. It is why everyone is free to own personal and real property and why you can start a business of virtually any nature.

Today almost every business owner we encounter is hoping the United States moves back towards the republic and away from the centralized government. The federal government is good at building roads, providing a strong military and protecting the rights of its citizens. The further it gets away from those basic tasks, the worse it gets.

I certainly cannot tell you who to vote for in your city, your state or even at the national level. All I ask is that you consider the above in making your choices . . .

God Bless . . .

George Schmok, Publisher

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November 19, 2019, 10:59 pm PDT

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