I was pretty happy when I saw Tom Kolbe painting his building last week.

I was pretty happy when I saw Tom Kolbe painting his building last week. I couldn’t get over how a splash of clean white paint made such a difference. (And now—have you noticed the glass in the windows?)

My normal path from work to car is to head directly for Tom’s building and walk in the bank’s drive-thru area to the little parking lot behind the post office. Over the years I’ve had quite a few conversations with Tom about his building and what he’d like to do with it. I sure wish him the best as he tries to take care of a very old building. I have no doubt he wants to do it.

I posted the picture that appears on the front page on our Facebook page right away; I didn’t wait until after publication. The colors are so vivid and the building looks so nice. I was just a little nervous that the post would initiate some negative comments, but I didn’t have to worry. The post generated several wonderful comments from people who were also happy to see the improvement—nothing but compliments!

While Tom has often told me he wants to fix up his building, he also said the “blight letter” he received gave him the push he needed to start on these improvements. He was very gracious in allowing me to tell the story.

I’ve been wondering, and imagine others are wondering, how the city’s new blight ordinance is being enforced. I’ll be talking with Sara Hornbrook, chairperson of the blight committee, and Matt Ibberson, blight officer, in the coming weeks. We can all find out together how this new ordinance is working for Sleepy Eye.