Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

UP: To today’s Parkersburg Christmas Parade and and Downtown PKB’s Winterfest — fantastic reminders of all our community (and downtown) have to offer, as we celebrate the holiday season and prepare for the colder months ahead. Organizers and participants are to be commended for the work they put into making these spectacular annual events fun for local families.

UP: To Parkersburg native Billy Williams and his fellow West Virginia University alumni who formed Nuru International, which works to end extreme poverty in remote, rural parts of the world. The group, dedicated to helping communities help themselves — a hand up, not handout, philosophy — sprung from deep West Virginia roots. “I fell like Nuru’s value of servant leadership also reflects a value that is common in our state — we go the extra mile to help our neighbors, and at Nuru we are extending that same value to our global neighbors,” Williams said.

UP: To winners of the annual Easter Seals West Virginia Festival of Trees, which will be auctioned off Dec. 7 at the Blennerhassett Hotel. Trees, wreaths and other holiday decorations will be awarded to the highest bidder in an event that helps Easter Seals serve children and families throughout our region.

DOWN: To more rumblings from North Korea, which U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley says bring “us closer to war, not farther from it. We have never sought war with North Korea and still today we do not seek it.”