Monday, December 13, 2010

Columbia County shouldn't go the way of Augusta in 'lack of vigilance'
One of the dividing points between Columbia County and our neighbor Richmond County is their attitude about crime control. This is evident in the case of Robert Beasley, the child abuser.

Extreme Makeover
Earnie Graham, her children Timothy and Tiffany and Michael Moloney, Paige Hemmis and Ed Sanders react to the new Girl Scout cabin at Camp Tanglewood. Graham works for the Girl Scouts' Augusta-area council.

Audit finds need for more fiscal control
Some agencies of Columbia County government need to do a better job of tracking finances, according to an audit released last week.

School trustees bend lawmakers' ears
The Columbia County school board and system officials shared concerns with state lawmakers at a Tuesday meeting.

Agency in contest for $1,500 prize
Child Enrichment Inc. is looking for online votes to win more than $1,500. The Georgia-based Path2College 529 plan is conducting a Web-based contest by asking the public to vote on the charity organization it most wants to see receive $1,529.

Blackberry plants for Christmas mean homemade cobbler in June
As a boy growing up in South Carolina, I looked forward to June every year. School was over for the summer, it was time to go swimming and to relax and explore the surrounding woods and fields.

Provider switch to save money
Construction on the infrastructure for a countywide broadband network begins this week. Columbia County officials will hold a groundbreaking ceremony at 2 p.m. Monday behind the library in Evans to start a project to lay more than 200 miles of fiber optic lines.

Departures change face of CVB board
Nearly half the board members of the Columbia County Convention and Visitors Bureau have stepped down in recent months.

Officials plan to borrow from county to complete new park
Columbia County officials hope to borrow money from themselves to continue construction at Evans Towne Center Park.

Emphasis on writing paying dividends
A recent focus on improving the writing skills of Columbia County's high school students seems to have paid off. The school system gained 2.9 percentage points over last year in the Georgia High School Writing Test, according to the Georgia Department of Education.

Plan for spring gardens online
Although winter hasn't officially arrived, many gardeners are already planning their spring and looking through mail-order catalogs for the perfect plants.

Kids take part in 'Shop with a Doc' event
Aiken resident Julian Kizzee wasted little time Tuesday filling his shopping cart with toys. The shopping spree brightened up the holiday season for Julian and about 35 other children, patients of the Joseph M. Still Burn Center at Doctors Hospital.

Divorces
Bryce Paul Denson and Michelle Lynn Denson, Nov. 15, 2010.

DUIs
Lawrence Tony Gibson, 31, of the 4000 block of Brownstone Drive in Evans, was charged with driving under the influence on Oct. 9, 2010, and was fined $810.

Time capsule
As reported 55 years ago in the pages of The Columbia News, Thursday, Dec. 1, 1955:

Newsmakers
The Martinez-Evans Optimist Club Announced new officers for 2010-11. Shown are Alicia Rhoades, sergeant at arms (from left); Vince Murray, secretary/treasurer; David Simoneau, president; Kim Peters, vice president; and Pradeep Satyaprakash, past-president.

Current events
VFW Post 6445, at 6423 Wrightsboro Road, near Pumpkin Center, is holding a turkey shoot starting at 1 p.m. each Saturday through December. Call (706) 556-9194.

Property transfers
Faircloth Homes Inc. to Craig John Gransbery, 333 Amersham Way, $213,075.

Police blotter
An Evans resident and produce company owner was arrested Wednesday and charged with having stolen vehicles and other items at an Augusta property he owns.

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

Marriage licenses
Mitchell Jeffrey Stopher Jr. and Jennifer Nicole Clifford applied for a marriage license on Oct. 8, 2010, and were married Oct. 16, 2010, in Augusta.

Editorial cartoon
Editorial cartoon for the Sunday, December 12, 2010 edition of the Columbia County News-Times.

Holiday crackdown focuses on DUI
While the December holidays mean a time of family and fellowship for most, this season can also bring tragedy for many who travel.

If I'm ringing, come running
We hear from the folks at the Salvation Army that donations are running a little behind this year. That's certainly understandable. While our situation in Columbia County is mostly pretty good, we're still seeing the effects of the tough economy.

Delay vote, and avoid unwanted tax break
Columbia County commissioners Tuesday have a prickly decision. Approve a rezoning request and hand the well-connected owners a huge tax break next year? Or postpone a decision just two weeks so the property value isn't affected?

Former soccer players get chance to reunite on pitch
When former soccer players from Columbia County schools converge on Lakeside High School's stadium Saturday, Dave Morgan says he'll be prepared for just about anything.

Academy behind success of many signees
As more and more Columbia County baseball players sign letters of intent this year to play Division I baseball, this has the makings of a banner year. The common denominator for most of them is their affiliation with Best 9 Sports Academy in Martinez.

Swim results

Prep calendar

Ex-Harlem long snapper to choose Georgia Southern
As we get closer to National Signing Day in February, I will have more news regarding football players from Columbia County who will be signing scholarships or walking on at some college programs.

Greenbrier's playoff run leads to individual honors
After Greenbrier High School's run all the way through the Class AAAA bracket and a runner-up finish this past season, several Wolfpack softball players have been honored for a strong season.

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