We're in this together

This year 2020 was like no other in our lifetime. It began with the excitement and anticipation of a leap year — with all holidays falling perfectly on the calendar — followed by the celebration of a Chiefs Super Bowl victory 50 years in the making.

Then the COVID-19 outbreak quickly swept across the world. Add in a hefty dose of social and political unrest, and everything just seems to bear a heavier weight.

We would like to send our thoughts and prayers to everyone who has been affected by this terrible virus. We would also like to express our gratitude to all frontline workers caring for our most vulnerable in impossible circumstances, and to all essential workers who bravely continued providing critical operations. Thank you for giving your strength to so many.

Replacing chamber programs and introducing activities that supported social distancing was at times a challenge. Yet, with ingenuity, creativity and hard work, we rose to the challenge of a completely different year of activity programming.

As a business community, you were a wonderful support to one another. What a difference it made to know that none of us were alone, that others were facing similar challenges and that we could find solutions to shared problems together. Thank you for your compassion, collaboration and courage.

The holidays can seem especially draining this year with all that is going on. We wish you moments of peace amid the difficulties, connections with family and friends even if they can’t be in person and the warmth of memories from holidays past.

Take heart; slowly but surely the pandemic will fade, so let’s welcome 2021 warmly by showering kindness upon our community. Join us in January for our Spread Kindness Chamber Challenge. Through intentional, consistent, selfless acts, we can spread kindness like a warm blanket on a cold winter’s day across Kearney.

We wish you a very safe holiday weekend and may the new year bring good health, happiness and good fortune. A blessed festive season to all!

Stacie Bratcher is executive director of the Kearney Chamber of Commerce. She wrote this submission on behalf of the chamber board of directors. Bratcher can be reached at execdirector@kearneychamber.org.

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