GSCC loses one of its own

Gadsden State Community College extends its sincerest condolences to family and friends of George McSpadden. He began his tenure at Gadsden State in 1966. He worked as a full-time music instructor from 1966 until his retirement in 1996. Since then he has remained as a part-time music instructor, advisor, and organist. 

Interim President Martha G. Lavender remarked, “Our Gadsden State family

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GCHS teaches breast cancer awareness

The FCCLA (Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America) Club at Gadsden City High School recently sponsored a breast cancer awareness program for junior and senior girls.

The goal of the program was to raise awareness about this dreaded disease that will affect one out of every eight persons in the country.

The importance of monthly self -exams and early detection were

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Lay Dam has rich history: part two

Between 1912 and 1928 the Alabama Power Company built four hydroelectric dams on the Coosa and Tallapoosa Rivers. At the time, and for some time to come, these dams were the largest, most complex, and most expensive construction projects in the history of the state. But they were much more than that. The dams were a turning point. When their

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Attalla Nursing Home holds Fall Festival

By Jacqueline Chandler/Messenger Correspondent

Saturday, Oct. 11, started out as a rainy day, but the sun came out just in time for the Attalla Nursing Home’s annual Fall Festival. 

The proceeds from the festival fund activities for residents at the facility. Arts and crafts projects, community outings such as movies, eating out and fishing trips, are a few of the events funded

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Best-selling author visits Gadsden Public Library

By Sarrah Peters/News Editor

The Gadsden Public Library invited best-selling young adult novelist C.C. Hunter to speak about her Shadow Falls and Shadow Falls After Dark series on Oct. 11.

C.C. Hunter is actually a local author named Christie Craig, who graduated from Glencoe High.

When Christie Craig was a child, she didn’t read much and she definitely didn’t write much. Craig had

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CharACTers presents The Wizard of Oz

By Sarrah Peters/News Editor

CharACTers Theatrics and Gadsden State are presenting the play The Wizard of Oz. The play is sponsored by Regional Biomedical Laboratory. 

The show will be on Oct 10, 11, 17 and 18 at 7:30 p.m. There will also be Sunday matinees on Oct 12 and 19 at 2:30 p.m. The play will be at Wallace Hall Fine Arts

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Billingsley beats Stewart

By Sarrah Peters/News Editor

Billy Billingsley, Sr. won the District 5 runoff election on Tuesday, Oct. 7 against current City of Gadsden councilman Bill Stewart. Stewart has held the position for four terms. 

Billingsley won with 53.6 percent of the votes, which totaled 308 votes. Stewart received 266 votes. 

The election on Aug. 26 had both Billingsley and Stewart with 41 percent, with

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City of Attalla to host annual Heritage Day

By Jacqueline Chandler/Messenger Correspondent

The City of Attalla will be hosting its annual Heritage Day on Saturday, October 18th. It is a rain or shine event held in historic downtown with over 100 vendors participating. Heritage Day has been around for more than 25 years and is a family friendly event. Lisa Spears, co-director of the event, estimates that more than

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Gadsden hosts Sunset Sips

On October 21 from 5 p.m. - 7 p.m., Downtown Gadsden Inc. will once again close the Memorial Bridge for the Third Annual Sunset Sips fundraising event. The Memorial Bridge is the perfectly unique venue for a night full of fun with friends over the Coosa River watching the sunset. 

Hors d’oeuvres will be provided by the Fish Market, Back Forty

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Students to Stewards helps education

Twenty-five schools and nonprofit organizations across the state will receive conservation education grants through the Alabama Power Foundation’s “Students to Stewards” program.

The three grant winners in Etowah County are Ivalee Elementary School in Attalla, Keep Etowah Beautiful and Gadsden Cultural Arts Foundation.

The Students to Stewards grants, totaling more than $40,000, are being awarded in celebration of 15 years of Renew

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USDA releases new farming programs

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack recently unveiled highly anticipated new programs to help farmers better manage risk, ushering in one of the most significant reforms to U.S. farm programs in decades. 

Vilsack also announced that new tools are now available to help provide farmers the information they need to choose the new safety net program that is right

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USDA expands access to credit

Agriculture Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will improve farm loans by expanding eligibility and increasing lending limits to help more beginning and family farmers. As part of this effort, USDA is raising the borrowing limit for the microloan program from $35,000 to $50,000; simplify the lending processes; updating required “farming experience” to

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Safeway wins waste disposal award

The Glencoe Award Program selected Safeway Industrial Service LLC for the 2014 Best of Glencoe Award in the Hazardous Waste Disposal category. Safeway held a ribbon cutting on Monday, Oct. 6 for its new universal management waste program. The program allows people to safely dispose of unsafe waste many businesses don’t realize are unsafe. The biggest example is fluorescent lights,

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Lay Dam has rich history

By Bill Tharpe

At the end of the 19th century, Alabama was an agricultural state. Houses were lit by candles, kerosene or gas lamps and many folks went to bed when it got dark. A few industries and towns had dynamos that provided street lighting and limited electricity. Montgomery and Birmingham had electric streetcars. But a few Alabama dreamers had a

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Etowah Historical Society to unveil Trail of Tears memorial

According to Etowah Historical Society President Danny Crownover, there will be a special free opening of Alabama’s first Trail of Tears Memorial on Oct. 7 from 10 a.m. – 6:30 p.m. at 2829 West Meighan Blvd. (U.S. 431) in Gadsden.  The memorial will be opened 176 years to the week that the Cherokees of Northeast
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Gadsden Public Library opens Novel Cafe

By Sarrah Peters/News Editor

The Gadsden Public library held a ribbon cutting for its new Novel Café on Tuesday, Sept 30. The Café had a grand opening the next day on Wednesday, Oct. 1. 

The Novel Café was the Downtown Deli. It is located inside the Gadsden Public Library in the former reference and genealogy area with the Friends of the Library

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Etowah Youth Orchestra opens season with formal fall concert

The Etowah Youth Orchestras opens its 2014-2015 season on Sunday, November 2nd, with the EYO’s Fall Formal Concert.  The 2 p.m. program will be held at the Wallace Hall Fine Arts Center on the campus of Gadsden State Community College.  The performance will feature the Etowah Youth Symphony Orchestra and the Etowah Symphonic Wind Ensemble.

The Fall Formal Concert is the

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McSpadden makes music into tradition

When students march down the aisle at Gadsden State’s commencement ceremony they are most likely thinking of their own college traditions and are oblivious to the unique tradition that is an essential part of the ceremony.  George McSpadden has been playing Mendelssohn’s Priest’s March for as many years as there have been commencements at Gadsden State. Beginning with the first

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Andy Nevala Trio to play at concert series

The Music Center at Temple Beth Israel Concert Series will change musical genres for the third performance of the season, featuring jazz pianist Andy Nevala.  The Andy Nevala Trio will perform at the Music Center on Friday, Nov. 7, at 7 p.m.

Andy Nevala currently directs Jazz Ensembles I, II, and III, The Latin ensemble, three combos, the Annual Jazz Festival

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GSCC welcomes international students

Gadsden State Community College welcomed two new international students as part of the U.S. Department of State’s Global Undergraduate Exchange Program in Eurasia & Central Asia known as Global UGRAD. Joining the Gadsden State Community College family are Ruslan Jumajanov from Kazakhstan and Artem Starostenko from Russia.

The Global UGRAD Program aims to advance youth leadership and promote mutual understanding by

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Two local students win national scholarship

More than 1,600 Black American high school seniors who have been designated semifinalists in the 51st annual National Achievement Scholarship Program were announced today by National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) officials, including two local students.

Kasoorelope Y. Oguntuyo of Gadsden City High and Elizabeth M. Williams of Westbrook Christian received a National Achievement Scholarship. 

These scholastically talented young men and women now

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Letter to the Editor: Cemetery cleanup a success

Dear Editor,

The amazing amount of efforts, be it labor, time, monetary or fortitude, has began to pay off at the Whites Chapel Cemetery in North Gadsden. 

The people have come from all walks of life to pay tribute and honor to the ones buried there.  The most unlikely help has come from the outside from people who don’t have ancestors buried

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Knights begin Campaign for Intellectual Disabilities

Members of the Knights of Columbus will be out this weekend for the Campaign for People with Intellectual Disabilities. 

On Friday, Oct. 3 and Saturday, Oct. 4, members will be scattered at stores throughout the community accepting donations in exchange for Tootsie Rolls. 

They will be located at Johnson’s in Downtown Gadsden, Johnson’s in Attalla, Johnson’s in Hokes Bluff, Winn Dixie in

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Veteran opens snow cone shop at Noccalula

Sarrah Peters/News Editor

Kerry Criswell, a Marine Corps veteran, has opened a snow cone store at Noccolula Falls Park. Rainbow Tropical Sno held a ribbon cutting ceremony on Sept. 11. 

Criswell spent 15 years in the Marine Corps. He started his military career young. At only 17, he was in Beirut, Lebanon witnessing the bombing of the barracks that killed almost 250

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Attalla Fall Festival a healthy success

By Jacqueline Chandler/Messenger Correspondent

The Attalla Fall Festival was held on Sept. 17 at Carnes Recreation Center. Hosted by the Council on Aging and the Attalla Senior Program, the annual event draws hundreds of seniors for entertainment, free information health screenings and more. This year’s theme was about farmers, so seniors showed up in overalls, straw hats and cowboy boots. Tickets

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Habitat will host Blitz Build

The Alabama Power Service Organization (APSO) will frame House #46 in a one-day blitz build for Gadsden-Etowah Habitat for Humanity on Friday, September 26 beginning at 7 a.m. The four-bedroom, two-bath house is located at 300 Summit Avenue and is the future home of Robert and Jessica McArthur and their five children. 

The floor system was completed last week by the

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GCHS boosts AP participation

Gadsden City High School recently announced its sixth year of Advanced Placement (AP) results, indicating a 121 percent increase in the number of students participating in AP Math, Science and English courses and a 25 percent increase in the qualifying scores on the AP exams.

Driving the increases in student achievement is the implementation of the ALSDE/A+ College Ready AP Program,

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Two Etowah students receive Alfa scholarship

Two Etowah County residents were among 50 recipients of the 2014 Alfa Foundation scholarship. Each recipient received $1,000 in the program’s inaugural year.

The scholarship recipients are Colin Edwards of Rainbow City, a graduate of Westbrook Christian School and freshman at Troy University studying education; and Tiffany Stevens of Boaz, a graduate of West End High School and junior at Athens

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Local artist pays attention to detail

By Jacqueline Chandler/Messenger Correspondent

Beautiful precision craftsmanship is the best description of Jack Bullock’s work. 

Bullock personally creates exceptional wooden wall mosaics in his shop, crafting every detail. Each creation is a labor of love. Even the piece’s eyes are made up of tiny pieces of wood that appear to form one piece. Bullock prefers to use different types of wood to

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Native Attalla author to host book signing

By Laura Ann Brown Tipps/Staff Correspondent

On September 28, Attalla native Tashara Childs will host a book signing for her first novel, Knocking on the Devil’s Door, at Flip Side Café in Gadsden from 3-5 p.m.

The book, which ranked No. 25 on the African-American Christian Fiction Kindle Chart, was published a year ago.

Childs is celebrating the book’s anniversary by hosting a

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GRMC hosts mammogram marathon

In October, also the official breast cancer awareness month, many awareness events are held. Gadsden Regional Medical Center’s Women’s Imaging Center, for the third year, is doing something a little different. Instead of just raising awareness, they are hosting a Mammogram Marathon. The Mammogram Marathon will take place on Oct. 16 from 7 a.m. to
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Lavender named GSCC president

Courtesy of al.com

Gadsden State Community College has its fourth president in just over a year’s time.

Martha Lavender has been named interim president at the school, a little more than two months after Helen McAlpine was appointed president of GSCC. Alabama Community College System Chancellor Mark Heinrich announced that McAlpine would return to her previous post as president of Drake State

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Alabama Power funds pre-K classes

By Sarrah Peters/News Editor

Alabama Power Foundation presented two Etowah County schools with grants Wednesday, Sept. 10.

Highlands Elementary and Attalla Elementary both received $10,000 grants from Alabama Power Foundation, who partnered with the Alabama Department of Children’s Affairs, as part of the Brighter Minds education initiative. 

The grants, given to help support early education programs in the state, aim to strengthen the

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New Nutcracker coming soon

Experience all the magic of the holiday classic with a special Black Friday performance on Nov. 28, at 7 p.m. as Downtown Dance Conservatory presents The Old World Nutcracker at the Wallace Hall Fine Arts Center in Gadsden. 

Housed in the Hardin Center for Cultural Arts, the conservatory has been the heart of the local classical ballet community for over 10

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Absentee ballot applications for upcoming elections now accepted

Cassandra Johnson/Absentee Election Manager

Applications are now being accepted for absentee ballots for the upcoming Nov, 4, 2014, General Election. 

Applications must be filed in the office of the Absentee Election Manager/Circuit Clerk not less than five days prior to the Election. 

The deadline to apply is Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014 by 5 p.m.  You may vote medical or business emergency, if you

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Treasures draw folks from near and far

By Jacqueline Chandler/Messenger Correspondent

Often referred to as Antique Alley, The City of Attalla draws in those who love to hunt for hidden treasures in the many antique shops located in the downtown area. 

Last weekend, this rich history was celebrated as the first biannual Treasures in the Street kicked off.

Vendors traveled from states such as Tennessee, Ohio and North Carolina to

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Survivor helps cancer patients feel better

By Sarrah Peters/News Editor

Every other first Monday of the month, Angela Klein, a hairdresser at Katy & Co. Hair Salon, heads to Gadsden Regional Cancer Center. She doesn’t go for treatment, at least not anymore. 

Klein is the Etowah County facilitator for the American Cancer Society. She works cutting hair through a program called Look Good Feel Better. The non-profit program

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Gladden proposes bill to prevent rapists receiving parental rights

Etowah County Coroner and candidate for the state House of Representatives in District 29, Michael Gladden recently  that, if elected to the State Legislature, the first bill he will introduce would prohibit a person convicted of first-degree rape from claiming custody and visitation rights.

Studies have shown that survivors of rape are the largest population in the nation to suffer from

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Red Cross encourages donations

Disasters can strike at any time, and the American Red Cross encourages eligible donors to help their communities prepare for emergencies by giving blood during National Preparedness Month. 

The mission of the Red Cross is to help the public prevent, prepare for and respond to emergencies. During National Preparedness Month, the Red Cross reminds Americans to take simple steps to get

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Capeside delivers fresh seafood

By Laura Ann Brown Tipps/Staff Correspondent

Four years ago, Dennis Deason and his son Drew began driving down to the gulf coast to pick up fresh seafood and deliver it to various restaurants.

“We started out with one little bitty truck,” said Dennis. “Drew did the driving and I was the salesman.”

The Deasons’ grassroots business eventually grew into a wholesale operation serving

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E.S. Museum recieves check for historical marker in park

The Emma Sansom High School Class of 1974 has always been a winning class. 

A check was presented to the Emma Sansom Museum Inc. for the amount of $1189.49 for the E.S. Project. 

When the original Emma Sansom gym was torn down, the “E” and “S” located in the top corners of the building were donated the E.S. Museum Inc. The museum

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Gladden Signs education pledge

Etowah County Coroner Michael Gladden, a candidate for State House District 29, has signed the Education Funding Protection Pledge.

The pledge is a response to recent comments from some state leaders who have suggested using education dollars to pay for corporate tax incentives or combining the budgets in an attempt to shore up funding short falls in the state’s General Fund

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Pow Wow comes to Noccalula Falls

By Sarrah Peters/News Editor

The Turtle Island Pow Wow took place on Saturday, Aug. 30 at Noccalula Falls. 

The admission fee benefited the Turtle Island Native American Association, a non-profit organization that funds multiple Pow Wows across Alabama and Tennessee. 

Venders came to sell their handmade jewelry, dream catchers and other Native American souvenirs. Specialty crafts and supplies were also sold and demonstrated. 

Gourd

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New Democratic Headquarters open

By Jacqueline Chandler/Messenger Correspondent

On Aug. 28, people lined the cobblestone of Court Street in downtown Gadsden for the ribbon cutting of the Democratic Headquarters.

Democratic candidates met with supporters and discussed their plans for a new direction in Alabama. The main focus on doing away with the supermajority in Montgomery and the desperate need to create jobs in Alabama. The candidates

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Attalla Antique show hits streets tonight

Once heralded around the region as “Antique Alley” for the number of antique shops in the downtown district, Historic Downtown Attalla is aiming to revive that distinction with the Inaugural “Treasures in the Streets” Antique Show Sept. 5 -7.

Over 50 vendors from Alabama and surrounding states will set up on 5th Avenue and 4th Street and will be open from

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Gadsden promotes child cancer awareness

By Sarrah Peters/News Editor

“The worst thing that a parent or grandparent can hear is that their child has cancer,” said Judy Atkins. 

Sadly, she would know. Her granddaughter, Hannah, was diagnosed with neuroblastoma when she was only 4 years old. After months of struggle, a bone marrow transplant and chemotherapy, she was in remission. 

Unfortunately, 15 months later she had a recurrence.

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Gadsden’s city elections results listed

By Sarrah Peters

News Editor

Gadsden City Council and Mayoral elections were held on Tuesday, Aug. 26. 

While these results are not final, due to provisional ballots, they are close to the final figures.

Mayor Sherman Guyton was re-elected for his fourth term. The other candidates were J. Holland, Mitchell James, and Michael Shell. Guyton received the majority with 56 percent,

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Voters say yes to Sunday liquor sales

By Sarrah Peters News Editor Gadsden voters on Tuesday, Aug. 26 didn’t just vote on city representatives. They also voted on whether or not to allow the sale of alcohol all seven days of the week, including Sunday. The votes showed overwhelming support for selling on Sunday, with 68 percent voting for it. A total
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EMA offers CERT certification

By Sarrah Peters

News Editor

Gadsden/Etowah County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) is offering a CERT, or Community Emergency Response Team, class. 

CERT certified individuals are able to help the community in times of emergency and disaster. Many call in and ask where they can help during bad weather and other emergencies. Currently, the members are being organized into area-based groups that

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Chick-fil-A hosts fundraising races

By Sarrah Peters

News Editor

Gadsden’s 4th Street Chick-fil-A will host their 2nd annual 5K, 10K and 1-mile Fun Run on Sept 6. 

The 10k and 5k races will begin at 8 a.m. in the Coosa Valley YMCA parking lot. The 1-mile Fun Run will begin at 9:30 a.m. There will also be a Family Fun Zone with free activities and

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Inside Toys exhibit ending soon, coming up Tutu2K fundraiser

By Sarrah Peters

News Editor

Mary G. Hardin Center for Cultural Art’s exhibit Toys: The Inside Story ends after Labor Day. 

The exhibit featured 12 stations showing the mechanisms that run classic childhood toys, like a jack-in-the-box. The exhibit demonstrates how gears, pulleys and circuits work in other popular toys as well.

The center is open on weekends, if people want

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Parker elected to leadership post

Etowah County Commissioner Carolyn Parker has been elected to serve as a member of the Association of County Commissions of Alabama’s Legislative Committee.

ACCA is the statewide association representing Alabama’s county governments. The Legislative Committee is composed of a chairman, the Association’s past presidents still serving in county government and a representative from each of ACCA’s 12 districts. 

The

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Local youths compete at state bowling tournament

The Etowah County Young American Bowling Association recently competed in The 2014 Pepsi USBC Youth Championship and The USBA Alabama State 8th Annual Alabama Youth Bowling Championship. 

In attendance at an awards banquet on June 14 in Prattville were Sarah Oden, Matthew McClendon, Kylee Whitt, Breanna Nixson and Jessica Clontz. 

The association meets at Paradise Lanes in Rainbow City

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Local youths compete at state bowling tournament

The Etowah County Young American Bowling Association recently competed in The 2014 Pepsi USBC Youth Championship and The USBA Alabama State 8th Annual Alabama Youth Bowling Championship. 

In attendance at an awards banquet on June 14 in Prattville were Sarah Oden, Matthew McClendon, Kylee Whitt, Breanna Nixson and Jessica Clontz. 

The association meets at Paradise Lanes in Rainbow City

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Resource Center helps support education

Larry Means, Mayor of Attalla, recently visited the Gadsden City Schools Parent Teacher Resource Center. Means was excited about the availability of resources for students. During his visit, Means received a “prescription education packet” made for his granddaughter, who attends an elementary school in the district.

Any student enrolled in a Gadsden City School is eligible for these services. Parents or

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Dragon Boat race raises money to build homes

By Sarrah Peters

Over 30 competitive and recreational teams participated in Etowah Gadsden Habitat for Humanity’s Dragon Boat Race Festival fundraiser on Aug. 16.

In the competitive division, Crossfit Rabid Red won first place with a time of 1:03.229. In second, the Athletic Club placed with a time of 1:04.798. In third, Brute/NEO had a time of 1:05.448. 

Although the scores were close

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School rivals compete in fundraiser

By Sarrah Peters/News Editor

Ronnie Watkins Ford hosted Drive 4 Ur School on Aug. 16. 

The fundraiser offered $20 to schools for each person that test drove a car, regardless of whether or not they bought the new cars. 

Two schools participated in the fundraiser. Rivals Hokes Bluff High and Glencoe High both encouraged participants to test drive a car for their school. 

Glencoe

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Glencoe council member earns advanced municipal certificate

City of Glencoe council member Danny Wagnon recently earned the professional designation of Advanced Certified Municipal Official.  In order to achieve this high honor, a municipal official must first complete 40 credit hours of training conducted or endorsed by the Alabama League of Municipalities to receive the designation of Certified Municipal Official. The individual then
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New Device at Riverview Brings Hope

Riverview Regional Medical Center’s Heart & Vascular team performed Etowah County’s first-ever Abiomed Impella 2.5 procedure on Wednesday, Aug. 13th. Dr. B. J. Patel, a Cardiologist at Riverview Regional Medical Staff, performed the procedure. This new technology is aimed at providing fast, effective relief for critically ill patients suffering from heart attack and heart failure. 

The Abiomed Impella 2.5, the world’s

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Principal gets drenched to raise ALS awareness

By Sarrah Peters/New Editor

Principal Delsia Easley of W. E. Striplin Elementary recently participated in the ALS ice water challenge to raise awareness.

In addition, the school collected over $150 for the cause.

After she had the water pored on her by Coach Walker,  Easley challenged other principals in the Gadsden City Schools, the superintendent of the school system, Ed Miller,  and the

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MANNA searches for weekly volunteers

MANNA is a non-profit company that provides a daily meal, Monday through Friday, to people who are disabled or otherwise unable to cook for themselves. They provide this service to the greater Gadsden region.

On a daily basis, MANNA delivers 225 meals. Many of these are specially prepared for specific dietary needs, such as diabetic, low sodium or pureed.

The meals cost

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Gadsden State offering new classes

The Gadsden State Community College Continuing Education Department will offer classes this fall with high school students in mind as well as lifelong learners. 

By taking advantage of the ACT Prep, high school juniors and seniors will have an opportunity to prepare before the final 2014 ACT Test date of December 13 and meet the mid-December scholarship deadlines for many 4-year

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GSCC hosts upcoming campus blood drives

The Gadsden State Community College Student Government Association is sponsoring several blood drives during the fall semester in conjunction with the American Red Cross. 

The mobile unit will be at the Valley Street Campus Tuesday, September 16. 

The second drive will be held Wednesday, September 24 at Beck Field House on the Wallace Drive Campus. 

In October, drives will be held at the

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New trails open at Noccalula Falls

By Sarrah Peters/News Editor

A ribbon cutting for a new trail system at Noccalula Falls campgrounds took place on August 12.

The new trails added 4.9 miles of trail. With the pre-existing Black Creek trail, there are now 6.6 miles of trails.

The City of Gadsden decided to open the new trails after the success of the Black Creek trail, which was opened

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World’s Longest Yard Sale brings people to Gadsden

By Sarrah Peters/News Editor 

Last weekend, shoppers flooded Lookout Mountain Parkway for the 27th annual World’s Longest Yard Sale, despite the rain.

The sale was first started in 1987 to demonstrate the usefulness and beauty of back roads and attract visitors to less known areas. 

The plan worked, attracting thousands of people from all over. 

The yard sale originated in Fentress County, Tenn. Now,

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Zebrafish Workshop comes to GSCC

Gadsden State Community College’s Aquaculture Department hosted a unique workshop August 6-8 on the Wallace Drive Campus - the first hands-on workshop for Zebrafish training. 

The University of Alabama Birmingham (UAB) co-sponsored the impressive workshop through Gadsden State’s Zebrafish Husbandry Education Program, which was developed in 2012, through the collaboration and partnership of the UAB Animal Resource Program along with many

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Goodyear meets veteran goal

Two years ago, The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company made a commitment to hire 1,000 United States military veterans over a three-year period. Recently, the company announced that it surpassed that goal more than a year early and has pledged to hire an additional 1,000 veterans.

“The response to Goodyear’s military hiring initiative - both from veterans and the public, has

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Laps for Life drive set for Sept. 11

The annual American Red Cross-Talladega Superspeedway “Laps for Life” blood drive returns to Talladega Superspeedway on Thursday, Sept. 11, from 12 - 6 p.m. in the Fox Sports1 Dome at the International Motorsports Hall of Fame. All presenting donors will be taken on a high speed ride around NASCAR’s Most Competitive Track in Talladega Superspeedway’s official pace car.

Not only will

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State Department of Education provides school bus safety tips

With school starting in school systems throughout Alabama, motorists are cautioned to be especially careful as they travel along Alabama’s streets and roads as school buses will again be on the road loading and unloading students across the state of Alabama.   

According to the Alabama State Department of Education (ALSDE) Pupil Transportation Section, the most dangerous part of a school

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ABC Trust provides energy efficiency grants

The Alabama Business Charitable (ABC) Trust Fund has awarded Nonprofit Energy Efficiency Program (NEEP) grants totaling more than $55,000 to seven organizations across the state, which includes Hand In paw, Birmingham; Safehouse of Shelby County, Pelham; Etowah County Community Services, Gadsden; East Central Alabama United Cerebral Palsy, Anniston; United Way of Etowah County, Gadsden; ARC of Alabama, Montgomery; and Joseph

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Youth Enrichment Program has successful year

Approximately 40 local youngsters participated in the 2014 Youth Enrichment Program of Attalla. 

Sponsored by State Rep. Craig Ford, the program’s first field trip was a trip to the state capitol in Montgomery, where the youths met Gov. Robert Bentley. The group also visited the Rosa Parks Museum. 

As a reward for staying involved with the program, in July youths 12 years

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Alabama Power awards Southside High School grant to plant trees

Alabama Power Foundation and Eastern Division Area Manager Steve Hildebrant awarded a Good Roots grant for $1000 to Etowah County Schools Superintendent Dr. Alan Cosby, Southside High School principal Dr. Marguerite Early, Etowah County Career Tech Center Director Mark Stancil, and Southside High School teacher Eric West on Tuesday, July 8. 

West, a Southside High School agriscience teacher, applied for the

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LeeAnn’s Greens: the future of produce

Gadsden soon will have fresh, hand-picked at the peak of freshness, air-grown produce at its fingertips.

Air-grown meaning premium produce grown aeroponically through air pods which use zero soil. Aeroponic growing uses a recirculating system with no pollution, ahead of organic growing which fertilizes the plants using just oxygen – no chemicals, pesticides or herbicides. 

LeeAnn’s Greens, with a mission to use

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Gadsden author releases new book

Sarrah Peters/Staff Writer

Mike Goodson, a Gadsden author, will release his new book “Images of America, Gadsden” on August 18. The book features over 200 vintage photographs of Gadsden people, places and things. The historical book features mostly the baby boomers era, which is the period after World War II during the 50s and 60s, but also contains some photos from

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Johnson elected chair of SGA presidents’ council

Jacksonville State University Student Government Association President Brett Allen Johnson was elected Monday to serve as the 2014-2015 Chairperson of the University Student Presidents’ Council.

A native of Hokes Bluff, Brett Johnson is a senior dual-majoring in Political Science and Communication. Brett was elected SGA President at Jacksonville State University in March of this year.

The University Student Presidents’ Council (USPC) consists

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Alabama Entertainers compete in national event

The Alabama Entertainers Talent Co. competed June 17-21 at Panama City Beach in the Platinum National Dance Competition. Eight acts were chosen among five hundred to dance in the grand championship gala for the recreational junior and senior divisions. The studio was honored by having two dances for each division selected.

In the junior division, the studio production number, “No Place

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Exchange students seek host families

Visiting students, ages 15-18, from around the world including Germany, Spain, Switzerland, and Thailand are seeking host families in and around Gadsden for the upcoming 2014-2015 academic school year. Host families are needed for the fall semester and full school year.

Host families (traditional families, singles, empty nesters, etc.) serve as mentors and a home base for their student. Visiting students

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Attalla Mayor Means trying to return to state senate

Submitted by Jacqueline Chandler

The City of Attalla mayor’s office wasn’t cluttered, but it was definitely “lived in.” The desk was mounted with stacks of files and paperwork, all distinctly separated for easy access to current projects. The gentleman was a flurry of movement, answering phone calls, discussing current issues and trying to make time for the interview. On more than

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New Class Option at Gadsden State

Gadsden State Community College will offer a new history class Fall Semester that will cover the African-American experience from the colonial era to the present day. The emphasis will be balanced between local and national events engaging with local history and understanding how the events impact our daily lives and relations. 

The unique class is History 256: African-American History and is

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GSCC announces summer graduation

The Summer Commencement Ceremony for Gadsden State Community College will be held Thursday, August 7 at 6 p.m. at the Wallace Hall Fine Arts Center in Gadsden. 

Dr. Helen T. McAlpine will address the graduates during the ceremony.  Dr. McAlpine is currently serving as the interim president of Gadsden State. 

In September 2010, Dr. McAlpine was appointed by President Barack Obama to

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Gadsden-Etowah EMA receives Mitigation Award

The Gadsden/Etowah Emergency Management Agency recently received the Large County Mitigation Award from the Alabama Association of Emergency Managers(AAEM). 

This award is in recognition for the “Shelter Etowah” program, which is currently made up of 15 community facilities that include; area wide churches, the Gadsden Public Library, area Community Centers & FEMA approved community safe rooms. 

This program was initiated by the

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The Gold Tiger Club’s eighteenth anniversary celebrates the class of 1964 with a reunion

The eighteenth annual Gadsden High School “Gold Tiger Club”, was held at Convention Hall in Gadsden June 21 from 5:30 p.m. until 10 p.m.

The Class of 1963 proudly presented this annual reunion featuring those who have been graduated from Gadsden High School more for 50 years or more. The Class of 1964 was honored on June 21 as they celebrated

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Lt. Col. gets surprise welcome home

By Lindsay Seagraves/News Editor

For the past 10 months, Lt. Col. Tim Maples has served the United States Army in Afghanistan as the Deputy Commander of the 82nd Sustainment Brigade. His second deployment to Afghanistan, Maples returned to help close out an operation he worked on du-ring a previous year.

While Maples was focused on returning home to see his family on

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Alabama Power holds iCan girls conference

By Lindsay Seagraves/News Editor

Alabama Power held an iCan Girls in Engineering Conference at Rainbow Middle School on Tuesday, July 29 at 9 a.m.

The iCan conference is sponsored by a team of Alabama Power/Southern Company female engineers who focus on encouraging middle school girls to consider engineering as a future career.

This is the first year that iCan has been offered to

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Van cram scheduled

On Saturday, Aug. 2, The Family Success Center, a United Way agency, Comcast Cable, Charter Media, Z 93.1 and WAAX radio will sponsor a Cram the Van event at the East Gadsden and Attalla Wal Mart stores from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. 

The center is taking school supplies to help students in need of supplies for the fall 2014 school

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Tax free spree ahead for Etowah County

By Lindsay Seagraves/News Editor

Etowah and other Alabama counties will get one shopping spree weekend beginning at 12:01 a.m. on Aug. 1 and lasting until midnight on Aug. 3.

Each first Friday in August, the Sales Tax Holiday is meant to coincide with the back to school needs of school-aged children in Alabama.

This year tax exemption will apply to clothing and school-related

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Hodges-Ford hires lifelong Gadsden resident as newest insurance agent

Hodges-Ford Insurance Agency, Inc. announced on Wednesday, July 23 that  its newest insurance agent Eddie Edwards joined the firm in Rainbow City. He will be selling personal and commercial lines of insurance. 

Hodges-Ford Insurance Agency, Inc. is a insurance firm offering home, automobile, life and commerical insurance to the public and businesses in Alabama. Its mission is to provide the best

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Calichera: You just had to be there

On June 20, a group of 22 people from Christ Central Church left Rainbow City for a mission trip to northern Mexico just south of the Rio Grande, the river border that separates that country from the United States. 

Our job in the small village of Calichera, which is on the outskirts of Reynosa, was to build a house for a

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$5000 grant benefits agriculture students

The Etowah County Soil and Water Conservation District and the Etowah County Farmers Federation received a $5000 grant from the Coosa Valley RD&C on Friday, July 25.

The grant was presented at the Etowah County Soil and Water Conservation District in Gadsden and was used to purchase a portable cotton gin and touch screen computers for the Ag in Action trailer.

The

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Alabama Power and United Way sponsor not-for-profit workshop

By Lindsay Seagraves/News Editor

Alabama Power and United Way of Etowah County sponsored a social media workshop for not-for-profit organizations in Etowah County on Wednesday, July 30.

The “Social Media - Make it work for you!” workshop was held at 10 a.m. at the Bevill Center at Gadsden State Community College, where Emmy-winning television reporter Ike Piggott gave a social media presentation. 

Piggott

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Dr. Alan celebrates 15 years in Gadsden

By Lindsay Seagraves/News Editor

Dr. Roger Alan, DDS and staff celebrated its 15-year anniversary on Wednesday, July 16, with an open house and refreshments. 

Alan has been serving the Gadsden area since he began practicing prosthodontics in 1999, when he opened his South 4th Street location. 

There, he serves as a full-service dental clinic offering prosthodontics and regular dental work.

As a prosthodontist, Alan

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Southside’s Them Dirty Roses blossom in Music City

By Lindsay Seagraves/News Editor

“Every Rose has its Thorn.”

Them Dirty Roses, however, don’t seem a thorn in Nashville’s side, as they’re taking Music City, USA by storm with their unmistakable southern down home rock and roll sound. 

Southside musicians James Ford, Frank Ford, Ben Crain and Andrew Davis make up a rock band unique to the Coosa Valley, as each of their

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American Family Care plans on December opening at ground-breaking ceremony

By Lindsay Seagraves/News Editor

A ceremonial groundbreaking was held on a sunny Thursday, July 17 by the Gadsden-Etowah Chamber of Commerce for American Family Care, a new family medical care clinic expected to open in Gadsden Dec. 2014. 

The clinic’s location will be at 366 E. Meighan Blvd in the Walmart Shopping center. 

The clinic is being built just in time for Meighan’s

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John S. Jones Summer Program students learn Bee 101

John S. Jones Elementary School Summer Program got a lesson in bees on Thursday, July 17 in Attalla during an exciting 2nd annual Bee Awareness Day as part of the “Bee a good reader” program. 

Children going into kindergarten through kids entering 8th grade attended the program.  John Jones Elementary School Summer Program Director Janet Page said the program has 100

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Alabama Power announces Alabama Good Roots Grant recipients

The Alabama Power Foundation has awarded 38 Good Roots grants totaling more than $33,000 to help communities across Alabama plant trees.

In partnership with the Alabama Forestry Association and the Alabama Urban Forestry Association, the foundation provides Good Roots grants to cities, towns and nonprofit organizations to purchase trees. Good Roots helps beautify and strengthen communities with tree-planting projects that benefit

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Ivalee Volunteer Fire Department to host open house

By Laura Ann Brown Tipps/Staff Correspondent

On Aug. 2, the Ivalee Fire Department will host an open house from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. with free hot dogs, hamburgers, trimmings and desserts.

“We just like to give everyone a chance to come in, see our equipment and trucks and to let people see the new community center room,” said Richard French, the

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Boats will race at 3rd annual Habitat dragon boat festival

The 3rd annual dragon boat race will take place on Saturday Aug. 16 at 9 a.m., Gadsden Riverwalk Park. 

Each 46” long canoe should have a team of 20 paddlers, 1 drummer, and a steersperson plus 3 alternates ages 15 and up. The deadline to register a team for the race is Friday, Aug. 1. 

The team will receive a 90-minute practice session

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New celebrates chamber accomplishments

Laura Ann Brown Tipps /Staff Correspondent

Heather New, Gadsden Chamber of Commerce President, recently completed her second year of the U.S. Chamber’s Institute for Organization Management professional certification program.

Now past the halfway point of the four-year program, New said she has been able to create relationships and networks among chambers across the nation, as well as other associations that deal with

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100 years of UMC Women’s History compiled

By Lindsay Seagraves/News Editor

The compiling of the past 128 years of the history of United Methodist Women of Gadsden First United Methodist Church has been in the works for over 20 years. A homecoming lunch and blessing over all of Jane Bugg’s work took place on Tuesday, July 15.

Bugg was president of United Methodist Women of Gadsden First United Methodist

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National group gives AAA scholarship plan failing grade

By Mike Cason/al.com

A national group that promotes tax-credit funded private school scholarships gives the scholarship plan under the Alabama Accountability Act a grade of F. 

In a recently released report, The Center for Education Reform rated Alabama’s law weakest among 14 states that it said have such programs.

The report from the center, which supports school choice and charter schools, did not

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