Pumpkins For the Pavilion
For more than four decades, families have flocked to the Morton Pumpkin Festival for food, festivities and pumpkin-themed fun. This year, the 47th annual event, themed Pumpkin Carnivàle, will include parades, carnival rides, live entertainment, a craft fair, business expo and plenty of competitions—from the Pumpkin Classic Run and Walk to the Miss Morton Pageant to Pumpkin Idol.
Every year, the festival raises funds for the Morton Chamber of Commerce, which in turn donates the money to key community projects. This year, the Chamber will dedicate a portion of the festival’s revenue to the Idlewood Arts Pavilion. Located in Morton’s Idlewood Park, this outdoor entertainment stage is projected to cost $500,000, with $375,000 already raised. The pavilion, currently under construction, is a joint project of the Morton Fine Arts Association and the Morton Park District. Once completed, it will offer space for local events like the Arts in the Park summer music series, summer youth theater, movies in the park, dance recitals, church activities and more.
The festival kicks off on Wednesday, September 11th, and runs through Saturday the 14th. A complete schedule of events is available at mortonpumpkinfestival.org. For more information about the pavilion visit mortoncommunityfoundation.org.
10 Ways to Thank a Donor
When it comes to running a nonprofit, agencies can never say “thank you” enough to the key players who keep it in operation—their donors. Rather than acknowledging gifts with a standard form letter and tax receipt, consider employing more personal methods to express your gratitude. Ruby & Associates, the local nonprofit consulting firm, suggests 10 engaging ways to properly thank donors:
- Host a top donor dinner
- Elect a committee of board members to make “thank you” calls
- Send out valentines in February
- Distribute small tokens of appreciation
- Mail a card at Thanksgiving
- Recognize donors in the agency newsletter
- Treat donors to lunch or dinner
- Surprise donors with a “thank you” call from the agency’s executive director or CEO
- Send out testimonials and/or pictures from agency recipients
- Ask for donors’ opinions within their expertise.
More than three out of four American employees say they have no desire to move up the ranks within their organization, according to a survey by California staffing service OfficeTeam. Among the reasons participants cited for not seeking promotions were a dislike or wariness of managing others, taking on tasks that don’t excite them, dealing with senior-level office politics, and disrupting the equilibrium between career challenges and family stability.
New research from mobile phone services company Zact reveals that one quarter of children ages two and younger now own a smartphone—with many pushing buttons and swiping screens before even learning to speak. The percentage of smartphone owners remained the same among two- to five-year-olds, but jumped to 39 percent among children ages six to nine, 56 percent among ages 10 to 13 and 66 percent among ages 14 to 17. According to the survey, just 37 percent of parents whose children own smartphones monitor their children’s time on the devices.
There may be some truth to the old adage “a cluttered desk is the sign of genius,” after all. A new study conducted by researchers from the University of Minnesota published in Psychological Science suggests a messy work environment can stimulate a person’s creativity, yielding bold, new ideas. After completing a series of experiments to test environmental effects on behavior, participants seated in a disorderly room generated more creative ideas and fresh insights than those seated in an orderly room, who were more likely to encourage convention and “play it safe.” iBi