Another Daniel Boone Festival is in the books. It’s time for dozens of people who commit countless hours to faithfully ensuring each aspect of the festival is executed to the best it can be, to rest.

Admittedly, I’ve never been one for festivals. I am an introvert, and I don’t care for crowds or being around large groups of people. But that doesn’t mean I don’t like one of our town’s biggest claims to fame. I’m a big fan of our heritage and the history that we’re reminded of each first week of October. Many people live for that week all year long, and many more save up money so their kids can enjoy something magical and different than same ole everyday life.

One thing is for sure. Our town isn’t lacking in opinions. We’re full of them — especially on social media. I find that quite disheartening, to be honest.

In the days since the festival ended, a few people have painted with broad strokes criticisms of the festival and those involved. Whether it was a DBF committee member or a volunteer taking hours out of their own family life to bring joy to thousands, there’s always someone there to complain and criticize.

I am not one of those poeple.

I think the committee members are passionate folks, and do the best they can with the resources they have. Knox County isn’t made of gold, and neither is the Daniel Boone Festival. I am proud to support the committee in ways that I can through promotional and graphics support through Mountain Advocate Media. They are a wonderful partner to work with, and we applaude their efforts each year.

I want to give a shout-out to a good friend of mine. This guy has worked with me in news for years, and I’ve known him through my church for even longer as he’s always been a wealth of knowledge and willing to lend a set of hands when needed. Brian O’Brien is an honest, incredibly caring, funny and just one class-act of a human being. He works with me often in the news world with Nolan Group Media (parent organization that owns Mountain Advocate Media), and goes above and beyond to help me anytime I need him. It’s rare that I get to return the favor because, well, he’s just that good. It’s not often that he needs to reach out to others.

It’s good to have friends in high places, but over the past couple of years in particular as we’ve had a few battles together on the news front, it’s even better to have someone who doesn’t care to dig down in the trenches with you. Brian is that guy. Thank you for your work and your friendship.

It’s been said it “takes a village” when it comes to raising kids. My version of that is “it takes a crew to cover the news.” My crew here at The Mountain Advocate newspaper have left me in amazement with their coverage of the festival this year. Jeff Ledington, our newest reporter, along with Samantha Walden and Tim Branstetter hit it out of the park. They truly did one of the best jobs covering the festival I’ve seen in my 16 years at the Advocate. With limited resources of both time, equipment and people, pretty much everything was covered and done so very well. They kept our website and social media current with posts after each festival event, and our readers benefited from their tireless work.

While others might criticize what we do, or what the DBF committee or Brian O’Brien does, we all do what we do because we love it, and we love the community we serve. We don’t do what we do for acclaim. We do it for you, our fellow citizens.

Not only are we the county’s oldest news source and the legal newspaper of record — we are KNOX COUNTY’S MEDIA. We are here for you. Newspaper is in the blood of this Managing Editor. I could certainly make more money doing something else. But I don’t do it for the money. I do it for you. I always will.

Charles is a native of Barbourville, Kentucky. He has worked with The Mountain Advocate in various capacities since 2003.

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