This past weekend was a typical weekend in Holmes County. The biggest problem was deciding which event to attend.

Friday evening we went to the annual Benton Days. With delicious BBQ chicken and baked beans followed by home-made ice-cream, no one had any excuse to leave hungry. Visiting with friends and neighbors while listening to the local bluegrass band, Salt Creek Inc, was most enjoyable. This was followed by John Schmid, always a favorite in these parts; he sang a few well-known Johnny Cash tribute numbers, mingled with some songs written by locals.

The weather was made-to-order for the volley ball tournaments with net after net stretching across the vacant grassy lot. It looked to me like there were more than a hundred Amish kids waiting their turn to play. Beside the big tent covering the main side-street were corn hole competitions, the thunk, thunk of the bean bags keeping time to the music playing under the canvas.

I looked around at people I had come to know in the past thirty-five years of living here, and at those I still hadn’t met. It occured to me that, although enjoyable in the extreme, no majestic symphony at Carnegie Hall, no gourmet meal in the finest setting of crystal and linens, could top a warm summer evening in Benton, enjoying all that is the best of small-town living.