UP: The basketball season is just beginning, but there are already two great stories from high school girls basketball. Vanlue, which has one of the smallest student enrollments in the state, with just 24 girls in grades 9, 10 and 11, has won three of its first four games. Meanwhile, Cory-Rawson, which had lost 49 straight, is now on a two-game winning streak. While no one at either school is talking conference titles or deep tournament runs, those early wins are huge for both programs and both school districts. It’s not easy winning games, let alone building competitive sports programs at small schools. Regardless of who we root for, we should all cheer the heart and fight of small schools like Vanlue and Cory-Rawson, win or lose.

UP: The annual holiday charities story that appeared in Thursday’s Courier is a Christmas tradition, of sorts. Every December, area charities offer up “need lists” to the community, things they need to help those who may need a helping hand during the holidays. The requests are almost always fulfilled, which means merry Christmases for many. The needs again this year include food, household supplies, new and used clothing and, of course, toys and cash. Many of the agencies work to meet the needs of the community year-round, but strive to fill an increased need this month. Looking to give to someone who really needs a gift this season? Look no further than Thursday’s front page.

UP: New “things” keep popping up in downtown Findlay as the construction project wraps up. One eye-catcher is the hula hoop-shaped “sculptures” at several intersections along Main. We’re told the curved steel bars are bike racks, although they’re not the schoolyard type. The racks have surfaced as the city tries to accommodate bike riders, while discouraging them from riding on Main Street sidewalks in the downtown corridor. The idea seems to be to make it convenient for bike riders to park, then walk to their destination. We’ll see how that works out!

UP: A good example of a partnership that works is the one involving Findlay’s Riverside Park pool. Over the past summer, about 25,000 individuals or families visited the public pool, despite a less-than-ideal swim season. For the past eight years, the city has contracted with the YMCA to handle seasonal management. This year, it cost the city about $80,000 to subsidize the pool, including the $30,000 it paid the Y to run it. Public pools seldom reach the break-even point, but Riverside pool remains a valuable community service. There’s no reason the partnership shouldn’t continue.