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Progress 2020 sections begin today

This comprehensive look at our region has six weekly parts

As the holiday season draws to a close each year, The Messenger’s writing staff embarks on a challenging adventure — producing a comprehensive look at how a wide array of developments in our region are shaping tomorrow.

While every issue of this newspaper is filled with articles, features and advertisements that readers find informative and useful, the six special sections we call Progress provide a perspective that goes far beyond simply reporting the latest happenings. Our goal is to look at the big picture, capture trends and explore more fully events that may lead to headlines down the road.

Today, Health and Wellness gets the Progress treatment. Various health care providers, including Community and Family Resources and UnityPoint Health — Trinity Regional Medical Center, are featured. There are also articles on public safety and philantrophy.

Education is next Sunday’s theme. That section will provide an update on school districts and other educational institutions.

Then on Feb. 2, a new addition to the Progress tradition will debut. This new section will examine area churches and service groups.

Communities throughout the region will be the focus of the Progress section to appear on Feb. 9. Most of us have a good idea of what’s going on in our hometown. This section will give everyone a chance to see what’s going on in surrounding communities.

Area businesses and industries will be featured in the Feb. 16 issue of Progress. This section will tell the story of the business community’s strides during 2019 and the outlook for the months and years ahead.

Then on Feb. 23, agriculture will be featured as Progress concludes. Agriculture has shaped the economy not only of north central Iowa, but also of the entire Hawkeye State for more than a century and a half. Consequently, it’s appropriate that Progress ends with an examination of that vital component of The Messenger’s world.

Reading The Messenger today and over the next five Sundays may take a bit longer than usual. We hope, however, that you will regard the time spent exploring these hefty issues to be a worthwhile investment in learning more about Fort Dodge and the region.

The future is likely to be a prosperous time for the rural Iowa economy and an era of exciting renewal for many north central Iowa communities. Progress will help readers understand why many observers are convinced that the days ahead are full of promise.