GreetingsView – Happy New Year

Our holidays were magical with two grandkids and another on the way. We enjoy having our kids here in town. We got to experience so much of what Modesto had to offer, like Modesto on Ice, Rockin’ Holiday, craft fairs, makers markets, holiday movies, concerts and so much more.

But 2023 went by so fast and we are standing here at the edge, looking out over a big future and the way forward. There are freeways, there are rocky roads, hills, valleys and there are twisty paths, but all along the way, if we lead with helping others, looking out for people who need a lift, and being who we are, and trying to find the good in all of our possibilities, we can make 2024 special.

ModestoView is all about the positive and the possible. We also encourage people to get involved and make a difference. But a lot of places aren’t like this. There is a lot of cruel and hateful sites on social media, that mock the homeless, feed negative news, taunt or try to control people that don’t believe like they do, or worse yet, pull our country apart and put people in danger. We must stand up to this with truth and a counter narrative. There are two paths; we can be lead by fear that breeds hatred, or we can be lead by possibilities and accomplishments. I choose the latter, and the fact that you are reading this, you might think the same. Who is getting stuff done, what groups are making a difference, and are we looking out for each other?

It’s really pretty simple. We are only successful when the people around us are successful and feel respected and valued.

I think that this year, being positive will be extra important. Modesto is poised to be an even better community, and you see the new teamwork in the downtown organizations, the neighborhoods, the business community and our local government really trying to find ways to make our area better. Let’s be a part of that. This month the GI Forum Citizen of the Year is recognized along with new recognition for Veteran of the Year and Community Service Hero of the Year. I was honored as Citizen of the Year in 2019 and that inspired me to do even more to help our community. This year, Evan Porges, Birgit Fladagar and Chris Guptill will be recognized on January 13.

ModestoView is loaded with good things about our community and our people. Maybe you have a story that we need to tell? Let me know.

There is a caution out there, The A&W is gone. For the last decade, it slowly fell to pieces and ended in a lawsuit. Do we do this to ourselves? In the local Modesto Now and Then and You Grew Up in Modesto Facebook pages, many ask repetitive questions like “Who remembers the Prescott Drive In?” or “Who remembers Burge’s Drive In?” Yet when we have the chance to save them, we don’t. When they are gone, we will scroll the pages of social media asking “Who remembers?” We can do better and we need an active Landmark Preservation Commission.

We must recognize that our past is valuable for our future. It gives us a real story, true character and let’s use that to build our future story. You look at the successful cities, and these are the ones that value their history. That’s why North Beach is shining in SF while the giant office buildings sit vacant. The Graffiti USA Museum will help tell our story. Construction is happening and Phase 2 is beginning. Read more in this issue.

As we think about how we go forward, it’s crazy that we ended last year with Beatles and Stones at the top of the charts. 53 years after the Beatles last played together, they had a #1 single and the Stones had a #1 album. That is why, after all these years, we ask the question, “Beatles or Stones” of our InterView subject. Check this month to see how Jessica Hill, Modesto’s Community & Economic Director answered.

Let recognize and support the good here in our local community. Support local businesses and let’s keep our hard earned dollars right here in town. Please read these pages and support the businesses that advertiser here, as they are helping keep the positive story of Modesto alive. I am grateful for all of them.

I hope to see you out and about this month and let’s do some great things together.

Chris Murphy, Founder and Publisher, ModestoView<>

Posted in: news

About the Author:

Chris Murphy is the President and CEO of Sierra Pacific Warehouse Group and Publisher and Founder of ModestoView Inc. Chris worked globally in the cycling industry returning to Modesto in 1996. He is also the founder of the Modesto Historic Graffiti Cruise Route, Legends of the Cruise Walk of Fame, Modesto Rockin’ Holiday, the Modesto Music History Organization and co-founder of the Modesto Area Music Association. Chris is married to his artist wife Rebecca since 1985 and has two daughters Madison and Abigail, both graduating from Modesto High and UC Berkeley. He is lead singer and guitarist for his band, Third Party that donates their performances to non-profits.