Preserving Small Towns
by Bill Lofquist

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History of the column

In September of 2005 Clarion newspaper publisher Corrin Strong had a conversation with Village Trustee Bill Lofquist at an Association for The Preservation of Geneseo (APOG) meeting. In the wake of the opening of the Wal-Mart Supercenter the previous month, they spoke about the need to act more forcefully to protect Geneseo from the encroachment of more large-scale commercial development.

At that time, Bill agreed to write a weekly column for the paper on preservation subjects. His first column appeared on September 29, 2005 and the rest is history. Since then, the Lowe's PDD application has become a very hot issue in town and a number of other citizens have used the column to express their views.

Interestingly, Corrin is a staunch Republican and Bill is a rabid Democrat and they had run against each other in the March 2004 election for Geneseo village board. Bill won by about 50 votes, but Corrin is eagerly preparing for a rematch in 2008!

Effective March 22, 2007, Corrin sold his interest in the newspaper to a competitor and The Clarion ceased publication. These archives then include about 70 columns published between September 29, 2005 and March 22, 2007.

Starting the very next week, the Preserving Geneseo column reappeared on the web as a blog. Archives of issues since March 30, 2007 are online on the blog. Starting November 2005, The Clarion also began a series of front page editorial cartoons on the subject, titled Demented Development. These are available online as well at