Event a success, but where were leaders?


(This is a letter I’m submitting to Mayor Jim Gourley and members of the City Council.)

It was an honor and a great experience to chair the first Community Health Fair for the city of Sweet Home and its residents.

I spent much of the day personally talking to each vendor that participated in this event. All expressed excitement about being there and were already looking forward to being a part of this event next year.

I want to thank all of the Health Fair Committee members for their personal dedication and professionalism for making this event successful. Even though we hit a few minor bumps along the way, we were able to work though those challenges, pull together for the benefit of our community. They truly were a great team to work with.

I cannot think of a time when a group of individuals came together and pulled off an event of this size in such a short time frame. That alone shows their belief in doing something great.

All of the Samaritan team and other vendors did an outstanding job at providing services.

A big thanks to Ralph Brown, high school principal, for his support to this event and making arrangements for use of the activity gym and chairs.

The Farmer’s Market team did an outstanding job at setup and displays. The music added a nice touch.

Even though the heat was a major factor, we were pleased with the turnout for a first-time event. May the weather have mercy on us next year.

The only disappointment of this event for me, personally, was the lack of presence from our elected officials in this community, civic organizations and committees.

If we are truly going to make our community healthy, strong and prosperous, it has to come from those that are in positions to make a difference. That will be our challenge going forward.

Next week I plan on getting the Health Fair Committee back together to discuss our successes, areas of opportunities and then have a more formal report out to the City Council.

Now that the fair is over, it will be important to invite Samaritan Health Services back to our community for a round table discussion with leadership. We can use the information and experience from this health fair to help build an ongoing relationship with Samaritan and identify future projects/services. It is time that we put behind us the Wiley Creek incident and build a positive path forward.

I want to thank you, Mr. Gourley, City Council member Dave Trask and Pat Gray for your hands- on and visible support at this year’s event. It demonstrates each of your commitments to make a difference and be a part of something bigger.

As a result of this Health Fair, our residents and community are better.


Bob Dalton

Sweet Home