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Two authors to hold book signings at First Friday

 By Sarrah Peters

News Editor


Author Ron Miller will be available for book signings during April’s First Friday, April 3, at The Little Faces Doll Shop on Broad Street in downtown Gadsden from 3 p.m. until 9 p.m.

Miller, who lives in Anniston, taught high school history and English at Anniston High School. He worked in administration and was principal for

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Southside Senior releases first book

 By Sarrah Peters

News Editor


Southside Senior Taylor Clough, 18, wrote and published her first book The Perfect Match last month.

“I wanted to tell my story,” said Taylor.

When Taylor Clough was only 12, she got some devastating news. Her little brother, Ben, was diagnosed with leukemia at only 9 years old. 

To help her brother and best friend fight

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Economic bill passes in Senate

  On Thursday, March 19, the Alabama Senate passed House Bill 59, the Alabama Reinvestment and Abatements Act, sponsored by Sen. Phil Williams (R-Rainbow City) and Rep. Paul Lee (R-Dothan). HB59 now heads to the governor for his signature.

HB59 will encourage the growth of existing businesses by creating capital reinvestment incentives for Alabama companies that will result in more

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Habitat announces Dragon Boat Race

  With origins dating back 2,300 years, dragon boat racing is the most fun, unique cultural event featuring adrenaline-pumping action. Teams race in 46-foot long Hong Kong-style dragon boats adorned with decorative dragonheads and tails, with 20 paddlers, a drummer and steerer navigating a racecourse at speeds of 10-15 mph. Dragon boat racing is the 8th fastest growing sport in

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Crawfish with Culture to be held April 18

  On Saturday, April 18 there will be a traditional low country boil, Crawfish With Culture,  presented by the Hardin Center for Cultural Arts and Capeside Fish Company. Guests will enjoy fresh Louisiana crawfish, gulf shrimp, potatoes, corn, and sausage.

In addition to the meal there will be live music and entertainment provided by Chris Bellamy. Bellamy is from Wilmington,

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Pictured, from left, Kathy Horne, Executive Director of Alabama Rural Water Association, Jim Mayo, West Etowah Operator, Roger Kimbril, West Etowah Chairman, Richard Smith, West EtowahBoard Member, Barry (Bo) Davenport, West Etowah Field Maintenance, Sally  Hathcock, West Etowah Secretary.Pictured, from left, Kathy Horne, Executive Director of Alabama Rural Water Association, Jim Mayo, West Etowah Operator, Roger Kimbril, West Etowah Chairman, Richard Smith, West EtowahBoard Member, Barry (Bo) Davenport, West Etowah Field Maintenance, Sally Hathcock, West Etowah Secretary.

West Etowah wins Best Tasting Water

 By George Marodis

Source Water Specialist


Does your utility produce the Best Tasting Water in Alabama? Well, if you did not enter the Alabama Rural Water Associations Water Taste Test Competition held on Tuesday March 18, then we will never know how it would compare against the competition. However, for those 15 utilities that entered the competition one sample of water

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McCauley honored as Servant Leader of the Year by LHC

  Gadsden resident Natalie McCauley, regional operations director for Alabama and Florida, has been named the 2014 national Servant Leader of the Year by LHC Group, one of the nation’s leading providers of post-acute care services. McCauley was selected from a group of 10 finalists as the national winner.

The Servant Leader of the Year is the highest honor an

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Back Forty Beer Company, known for its craft beers, is planning to create craft sodas, though the company is still in the research stages. Back Forty has been chosen as one of the top 100 small businesses in the nation.Back Forty Beer Company, known for its craft beers, is planning to create craft sodas, though the company is still in the research stages. Back Forty has been chosen as one of the top 100 small businesses in the nation.

The U.S. Chamber and Auburn raise glasses to Back Forty Beer Company

By Lindsay Seagraves

Messenger Correspondent


Just when Back Forty Beer Company founder Jason Wilson thought he’d reached the top of the mountain after winning a spot as one of the top 100 small businesses in the nation, the driven entrepreneur continues to reach new peaks – including a prestigious one from his alma mater.

Wilson said Back Forty was nominated for

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John S. Jones ranked in top 100 Alabama elementaries

 By Sarrah Peters

News Editor


On a recent ranking of nationwide schools, a local school placed in the top 100 elementary schools in Alabama. John S. Jones Elementary was rated 79th in the state.

The rankings were performed by a research website called Niche.com. Niche uses community reviews and opinions with hard data, like standardized test scores. The website has scores

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County safety efforts pay off

  A yearlong effort across Alabama to provide safer workplaces and reduce injuries has produced dividends for 42 county commissions, which have received cash awards from the Association of County Commissions of Alabama’s insurance funds. 

ACCA’s Safety Incentive Discount Program, administered by its self-funded insurance programs, rewards counties for ongoing efforts to enhance training for employees in safety-sensitive positions, improve

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ECBOE receives accreditation

  According to an exit report from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Division of AdvancED, the Etowah County Board of Education recently earned accreditation for a five-year period. Etowah County exceeded AdvancED averages in all rated categories.

AdvancED is the largest community of education professional in the world. The group performs on-site reviews and is a partner with

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Author Carla Wynn Hall has now published a second volume of “Empowered Women of Social Media.” Author Carla Wynn Hall has now published a second volume of “Empowered Women of Social Media.”

Local author publishes second anthology

Carla Wynn Hall, a Gadsden native, has found her passion in helping under supported women write their stories and be published in a book. Last year, she published an anthology of women’s stories. The women used social media to connect and collaborate. Now she has published a second anthology.

Both anthologies she was instrumental in publishing, made the #1

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Gadsden Middle students learn at Disney

  Gadsden Middle School students used the Walt Disney World Resort as a classroom on Feb. 2 and 3 when they participated in the Disney Youth Education Series “The Science of Disney Imagineering: Gravity” at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and “Principles of Animal Behavior” at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. 

The group of students traveled from Gadsden, Ala. to the Walt Disney World

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Oliver to be inducted into Hall of Honor

  The Induction into the Patriots Hall of Honor normally takes place during the Patriots Day Luncheon, which is on November 4 this year. However in recognition of the life work of Hazel Oliver and that she will be turning 100 years old in August, the Gadsden-Etowah Patriots Association will have a special induction ceremony on March 31 at 11

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GSCC to host annual International Festival

  Gadsden State Community College International Programs will host its 37th annual International Festival, “The Places You’ll Go,” on April 10 at Convention Hall in Gadsden. 

The festival includes displays showcasing countries from around the world and highlights international food and entertainment. 

Tickets are on sale now until April 8 at the Wallace Hall online box office at www.international.wallacehall.org; the

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Hardin Center to host Wine, Women and Wardrobe

  The Mary G. Hardin Center for Cultural Arts will host the Wine, Women and Wardrobe event at the Gunn-Bellenger House on Thursday, April 16 from 4 to 8 p.m. as part of their year-long celebration of the 25th anniversary of the center. 

Several fashion vendors will be showcasing their products, including both apparel and accessories. There will be representatives

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Physicians Who Care to host charity 5K

  Physicians Who Care will sponsor our 24th Annual 5K/1Mile Walk on April 18. All money raised will go to the Etowah County Cancer Foundation.

Physicians Who Care was established in 1988 and continues to offer Community Education, Physician Referral Services, and Special Projects throughout the year. It was founded by Seth Spotnitz, MD who is Chairman of the 5K

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Pictured above is Alabama Power Plant Gadsden, which has been operating for over 100 years. The Plant has now stopped using coal due to government mandates.Pictured above is Alabama Power Plant Gadsden, which has been operating for over 100 years. The Plant has now stopped using coal due to government mandates.

Plant Gadsden forced to stop coal useage

  Federal environmental mandates are forcing Alabama Power to stop using coal at Plant Gadsden.

The facility ceased burning coal on Wednesday, March 11 and will use only natural gas. By restricting the plant to natural gas, federal mandates are limiting the company’s ability to use more than one type of fuel at the facility.

Fuel diversity – the ability

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Rainbow City announces Chocolate Festival plans

 By Sarrah Peters

News Editor


On Friday, March 6, Rainbow City officials and Mayor Terry John Calhoun announced the plans for the 10th annual Alabama Chocolate Festival. The festival will take place at the Rainbow Plaza in Rainbow City on Saturday, April 11. Admission to the festival is free.

“This is our tenth year, and we are expecting a large crowd

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Downtown Gadsden celebrates St. Patty’s Day with a Pub Crawl

  On Tuesday, March 17 on St. Patrick’s Day, Chase Building Group, with the help of Downtown Gadsden, Inc., will host a Pub Crawl in downtown Gadsden.  

The fun begins at 5:30 p.m. at the Back Forty Beer Company, where you will pick up your pub crawl card.  If you can’t make it to Back Forty, don’t worry. All

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