CALLING ALL COOKIE-MAKERS The annual drive to gather 1,200 dozen home-baked cookies for Minot Air Force Base personnel is in progress. The treats are distributed to first-term airman between the ages of 18 and 20 who are required to live in dormitories. For some, it may be their first Christmas spent away from family and friends. Anyone interested in contributing a dozen or more homemade cookies to the effort is asked to drop the goodies off at the Minot Area Chamber of Commerce office, at 1020-20th Ave. SW. Cookies can be dropped off there beginning Tuesday, and ending on Dec. 10. The event has been a huge success in past years, and we have faith residents of the Minot area will make this year's cookie drive successful, too. The airmen no doubt appreciate a taste of home-cooking, and the event is another way to continue the support between the community residents and the personnel at Minot Air Force Base.
RECOVERY CONTINUES A recent survey shows that nearly 80 percent of homes most heavily damaged by the 2011 Souris River flood are repaired and are being lived it, or are close to being lived in. The survey showed that 2,716 homes were damaged, with about 600 homes not yet repaired enough to be livable. While 80 percent is a great number, there remain hundreds of homes representing countless families that are not yet in livable condition. But as volunteer efforts continue and homeowners work on their own, the number of flood-damaged homes becoming livable again will no doubt continue to increase. There's not a better sight than driving through a flood-damaged neighborhood and seeing homes that previously had Federal Emergency Management Agency temporary housing units next to it and seeing the FEMA units gone, and residents back living in their homes. That trend will continue, and that's obviously a good thing as the city continues its recovery.