Sunday, December 13, 2009

SOA should be welcome, but as a guest; CCCO is county's own
As a resident of Columbia County for more than 30 years, I would like to respond to recent articles and opinions, dated Nov. 15, 18, 22 and 29, about the Columbia County Civic Orchestra's request to "our" commission to deny the petition by the Symphony Orchestra Augusta to be named the "Official Resident Symphony" of Columbia County.

Thinking donations for Christmas? Happy Tails is a good choice
This is the season for people to give donations to many local and national charities.

Pastor's guest column a timely reminder to remember details
Even though Thanksgiving is now behind us, I still want to thank The News-Times for printing and sharing the guest column by Rev. Mike Klaus.

Store that helps shelter is growing
Just a year after the Making Ends Meet Bargain Center opened, the Martinez thrift store is looking to expand its facility as donations from the community continue to pour in.

To add color to Christmas decor, consider a variety of holly plants
Cooler temperatures, and all the decorations we use, help get us into the spirit of the season. All of the greenery adds to the feel of Christmas.

Schools help needy children at Christmas
A lagging economy combined with the holiday season has led more people to seek help from community organizations dedicated to serving the needy.

Leaders warn cuts threaten education
Any more state budget cuts to education will directly affect Columbia County pupils' learning ability, schools Superintendent Charles Nagle told state lawmakers during a Tuesday forum.

Pageant winner featured in Grovetown festivities
At 80 years old, Harriet Leverett excitedly shared the spotlight Dec. 5 with girls about one-quarter her age. The reigning 2009 Ms. Senior Georgia-Carolina was featured in the Grovetown city parade when she rode in the back of a convertible.

Mistletoe's image hides a darker side
For some, decking the halls also means hanging the mistletoe. And finding fresh mistletoe can be as simple as looking upward.

School board puts calendar on hold
The Columbia County school board on Tuesday scrapped the 2010-11 school calendar.

Program will help poor pay heat bills
Low-income families in Columbia County may apply for federal energy assistance grants this week in Grovetown.

Children treated at burn center buy gifts
More than two dozen children, who have been treated at the Joseph M. Still Burn Center at Doctors Hospital, were given $150 Target gift cards to shop for holiday gifts.

Inmate is charged with sexual assault
Columbia County deputies recently charged an inmate of the county jail with sodomizing his cell mate.

Newsmakers
Ninety-five students at Lakeside High School earned the designation of Advanced Placement Scholar by the College Board in recognition of their achievements on the 2009 college-level Advanced Placement Program Exams.

Keeping in step
The Evans High color guard marches in the annual ceremony held by the school's JROTC unit.

Get Up & Go
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will accept real Christmas trees for recycling as fish habitat from Friday through Jan. 5 at Riverside Middle School on Furys Ferry Road in Evans. For information, call (800) 533-3478.

Divorces
Sarah Jean Leopard and William Joseph Leopard, Dec. 1, 2009.

PropertyTransfers
Secretary of Housing and Urban Development to David J. Zwemer,1246 Grant Road, $67,500.

Pet adoptions
Heartsong Animal Rescue is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that relies on donations to continue the rescue effort. Located in Martinez, Heartsong rescues from 10 counties.

Marriage licenses
John David Edwards and Michelle Nicole Moore applied for a marriage license on Sept. 15, 2009, and were married Nov. 13, 2009, in Augusta.

School lunch
Columbia County school lunch menus

Current events
St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Church, 4921 Columbia Road, will present "Santa's Gift to Jesus," a story about the true meaning of Christmas, at 2 p.m. today in the sanctuary.

Police blotter
Principal Bob Boyd escorts Bel Air Elementary School pupils onto a bus Wednesday morning after their bus broke down on Owens Road near Ashton Woods Drive. The bus driver said a passing vehicle thought the bus was on fire because of white smoke billowing from under the hood and called 911, bringing fire trucks to the scene.

The importance of the wise men
In rethinking the Christmas story, as I do each year, I'm struck by the unusual mix of character and detail: The young peasant girl and her carpenter-husband having their first child - in a stable, no less; a sky full of angels to announce the birth; and a group of ordinary shepherds running down the hillside "to see this thing which has come to pass" (Luke 2:15).

Get to phones for local girl
For Columbia County, it's a call to arms.

From school bells to tightened belts
Batten down the hatches, parents. Columbia County's schools could be in for some rough sailing.

Editorial cartoon
The editorial cartoon for Sunday, December 13, 2009.

Lakeside football players bring home honors from a successful season
Lakeside football was recognized for its standout year during all-region voting last week for 3-AAAA's fall sports.

Lakeside's Bowles selected Girls Cross Country Runner of the Year
Anna Bowles was selected The Columbia County News-Times ' Girls Cross Country Runner of the Year.

Harlem star is Shorter-bound
Jay Aplin signed with Shorter College on Tuesday as a shortstop and pitcher.

Don't gift (or look for) these books
Christmas gives us all a chance to give to others, spend time with our families, eat some great home-cooked meals and to receive gifts we would probably never buy for ourselves.

Blackwelder's success comes from setting and breaking personal records
There is a simple purpose that drove Robert Blackwelder at each cross country race this season. The Greenbrier High School senior wanted only to beat his previous best time.

Prep calendar

Sports calendar
Greenbrier High will hold a baseball clinic Dec. 21-22 from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. each day. It is open to boys grades 2-8. Cost is $50 per person, $25 for siblings. For information, call (706) 650-6040, ext. 5921.

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