About every eighteen months we take thirty or so citizens, that have lived in Addison for at least one year, through a program that teaches them about all of the businesses the town operates. Obviously we are in the public safety business and we have streets, drainage, and parks and recreation. We also own Addison Airport, the Addison Conference and Theatre Centre, a water distribution system and a sanitary sewer system. We are in the event business in a really big way and we manage a lot of private contracts for things like garbage collection, park mowing and street sweeping. We try to expose the citizens to the inner workings of all of those operations in a program that is less than four days. Last Saturday was the last session for the class and we toured the special events district and Addison Circle. The idea is to have citizens think of themselves as owners, which carries with it other responsibilities than one would have if you are just a consumer of services. They have already demonstrated one of the key tenants by signing up for the class. They have taken initiative to learn about their community! It is a great group and I am sure they will show up in leadership roles in the town and in private and non profit organizations in the future. In fact many of them are already giving back through their involvement with the Water Tower Theatre, The Addison Arbor Foundation, Metrocrest Social Services, The Family Place and various other groups. Now they have a broader view of their town and how it all works.