Mayor Newhard: Perchance to Dream

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     The new year, a new decade, it represents a beginning but also is the moment to reflect and possibly to dream. Soon, we will be celebrating the life of Reverend Martin Luther King whose commitment to racial and human equality represented a dream – not just a personal dream, but more importantly a dream of an America that was true to its words, that all are created equal. It was a dream that changed the course of history.

     Growing up and hearing the words of Doctor King or the many who were willing to recognize that something could be better, left me with an understanding of the value and importance of what it means to dream. Even on a local level to see my dad touch the lives of many through his benevolence and compassion as a small-town pharmacist left me with an understanding there are things bigger than what appears.

     If there is a time to dream, I guess it’s now. Big or small, it’s a moment to think that there are possibilities and a future that involves change. I think of the dream of a new animal shelter and how important it will be to make that dream a reality. I think of our skateboard athletes and the hope to build a better facility. I think also of individual dreams – ones that speak of self-improvement, quality of living and families. Maybe the dream is to communicate better, to listen, to grow from others, to share – the dream of an open heart.

     Truly, we are dreamers here in Warwick. It has shaped the place we live. The dream of building a new library, preserving farmland and our historic buildings or building a larger hospital or moving a historic church are all part of the equation.  We are in essence, folks who see life filled with potential and are willing to dream and more importantly make those dreams real.

     My wife wears a locket made by a local artist with a picture of my very young son with a crown of leaves with some added words from Mr. Shakespeare and they are, “perchance to dream…” Life seems filled sometimes with the stubborn, archaic and unresolvable. When I look at this image of a little boy, so unfettered it gives me hope and gives me a reason to try harder but most importantly a reason to carry on and especially, to dream.

The above column, written by Village of Warwick Mayor Michael Newhard, has been published in the Jan. 8 issue of the Warwick Valley Dispatch.

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