By BRAD KELLAR
Time once again to look ahead into the great unknown which is the future and offer up my annual fearless predictions.
Once again, I must issue the advisory that in no way do I claim to be a fortune teller or to have any sort of inside information available. In fact I started this exercise 13 years ago as a joke, in comparison to all of the tabloid magazine articles which would crop up at the start of each year, filled with outrageous “psychic” predictions. My wild guesses just turned out to be more accurate than theirs. Sometimes.
At this point in 2012, I had compiled a record of 74 correct predictions and 50 wrong guesses. Not bad.
For 2012 I had foreseen:
— The extreme drought which has been in place will give way to an extremely wet summer, but not before more water usage restrictions and a ban on outdoor burning are put in place. No, summer wasn’t really that wet. So, I got this one wrong.
— Local unemployment will level out and stabilize between 8 and 9 percent by the end of summer. The unemployment rate rose to 9.4 percent in June, then dropped for five straight months through November. I think I was close enough on this one, so I’m claiming it as a correct prediction.
— The City of Greenville Municipal Election in May will record a turnout of about 10 percent. I think the actual percentage was about 12 percent, so we’ll chalk that one up in the win column also.
— There will be announcements of both a major new industry and a major retail development by the end of the year. Actually there was the second expansion of Weather Artificial Lift Systems and Total Equipment and Sales taking over the former Woodgrain Millwork facility, among others, for the industrial prediction. As for the major retail development, there was the Crossroads Mall redo which was announced in March, and the Splash Kingdom water park locating in the proposed Greenville Towne Center project. So, I was right again.
— The Dallas Cowboys will make the playoffs, with a record of 11-5 or better. Cough, cough ... OK, I was wrong.
So, I racked up three rights and two wrongs, good enough to improve my record to 77 and 52.
Looking ahead for 2013:
— I see at least one more major positive industrial announcement, a big one, inside Greenville coming in the first six months of the year.
— The Dallas Cowboys will make the playoffs next season. I got to be right about this sometime ...
— Local unemployment will continue to remain well below 8 percent for the entire year and could drop even more by the end of 2013.
— There will be a major, giant, HUGE announcement concerning an economic development project in Hunt County, but not necessarily inside Greenville, this year.
— Voters in May will approve the sale of bonds for a new Greenville YMCA along the Monty Stratton Parkway.
— I believe the Denver Broncos will win the Super Bowl this year, with Peyton Manning named as MVP.
That’s about it for now. The old crystal ball is starting to cloud over. Remember, these predictions are for entertainment purposes only (hey, I was entertained) and are not to be used for wagering or any other money-making uses unless I receive a cut (kidding!).
Here’s hoping all your positive predictions come true this year.
Just a thought ...
Kellar is a Herald-Banner staff writer