A celebratory mood prevails in Worthington as the annual Windsurfing Regatta and Music Festival sails into its second day.
Children, teens, adults, senior citizens, windsurfers and guests stroll along Lake Okabena’s Sailboard Beach, munching on cheese curds, Indian tacos and French fries while absorbing hours of music along with plenty of sun and wind.
It’s a happy scene (loosely reminiscent of French post-Impressionist artist Georges Seurat’s late-19th century painting “A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of LaGrande Jatte”), a contemporary picture of a community at play and rest.
But not everybody is relaxing at such an event. Behind every civic celebration stands a host of volunteer workers, taking pains to ensure the concession stands are rigged with electricity, that the various musical groups have everything they need to entertain, that the windsurfing races get underway and that trash and recyclables are regularly collected.
From 2010-16, Kenneth Moser was one of those dedicated volunteers, working nonstop to keep all scheduled activities running smoothly and guaranteeing all loose ends were tied up. First as a member of the regatta/music festival’s committee, and then as its president for four years, Moser was the go-to guy for everything from rain location decisions to media inquiries–and he managed it all with a smile on his face.
Sadly, Moser succumbed to cancer in late February at the far-too-young age of 53, leaving behind not only his beloved family and friends but also an entire city that relied heavily on his involvement and optimism.
Social media has enabled numerous naysayers to emerge from the woodwork of silence and inactivity, people who are quick to lodge complaints and critiques from the safety of their iPhones or computer keyboards but slower to answer the call to serve.
Moser was never a nattering nabob of negativism. Instead, he took every possible opportunity to assist, to be involved, to make a difference for the betterment of the community which he had long ago come to love. From CCSI to the Worthington Area Chamber of Commerce to the United Way to the “Half Cent Sales Tax” campaign, Moser jumped in and rolled up his sleeves. Fifty percent of the proceeds from this weekend’s 5K Color Dash will be donated in his name to the new YMCA Family2Family mentorship program.
Here’s my challenge to those who complain that Worthington lacks certain amenities, or needs more restaurants, or is deficient in other ways: Try adopting a “can do” mentality and discover where YOU can contribute, make a difference and possibly influence positive changes.
Imagine what we could accomplish with more “Ken-Do” attitudes.