Perfect time to imagine the future
Kind of tough, isn’t it?
Try this: Think about what Port Aransas was like just 30 years ago.
The post office was in a building about onethird the size of the current building. The Family Center was just that – the Family Center (not an IGA) and it was about a quarter the size it is now. Port Aransas High School was graduating its first class in a brand new building (for many years Port Aransas ISD did not offer grades nine through 12 – island kids went to Aransas Pass or Flour Bluff to attend high school). The chamber of commerce membership list was recorded by hand on index cards that were kept in a shoebox. It had a staff of one – the legendary, late Lanette Nolte and her crew of volunteers.
Kids learned to swim in a 20’ x 40’ pool thanks to the Presbyterian church that allowed the use of its retreat for that purpose. Lessons had to be cancelled every few days to allow the pool chemicals to catch up to the demand.
We had no taxi, no trolley, no birding centers, no nature preserve, no Wetlands Education Center, no guided beach walks, no Dine Around, no Champagne Cruise, no Whooping Crane Festival, no Port Aransas Museum.
Streets were poorly paved and planned drainage was virtually non-existent.
I could go on, but you get the point: Things just don’t stay the same.
We are armed with that knowledge; it would be criminal to waste it.
Imagine what it would be like today if 40 or more years ago someone had been blessed with the foresight to develop housing that would be affordable so today’s workforce could be assured of an affordable place to live.
If the powers that were had predicted a bustling nightlife 40 years hence, they might have created an entertainment district where residential and commercial interests were not at odds over such issues as, say, noise levels.
This month we start a new chapter at the school district and at city hall.
Next month, we will welcome a new city manager.
What a great time to look ahead and imagine – imagine what Port Aransas will be like 40 years from now if we sit on our hands and don’t contemplate the future. And imagine what Port Aransas will be like in 40 years if we open up our minds to contemplation of the kind of future we want to insure, and do something about it.
That takes vision and initiative. Do we have it? I’m thinking we do.