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Top Stories
June 6, 2013 Issue

Cornholin’ for a cause
Dumping complaint filed against Wadley
Georgia children are getting healthier
More than 5,000 lbs of food to be distributed in Gibson

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Cornholin’ for a cause

By Carol McLeod

To some it may just be holes cut in planks of wood and cloth bags of raw corn, but to others it’s a delicate balance of skill and concentration. Either way it’s cornhole.

A game like bean bag toss, a local cornhole tournament brought about 16 people to the old armory in Louisville Saturday, May 18.


Jimmy Polan, a Louisville firefighter, put the event together and is an enthusiast of the game. Eight teams with people aged 9 to

53 played in the tournament. Some were serious players; one or two had never played. All seemed to have a great time.

Polan put a notice on an online social media site and said he had responses from people all over Georgia.

He has been playing the game for four years; and, this was his first time putting on a tournament.

Two of the younger players, Colton Lopez, 11, and Hutch Wheeler, 12, have been best friends for about five years.

Hutch said he plays the game at the house sometimes. Colton said they play a lot of baseball, too.

Hutch attends Wrens Middle School; and, Colton attends North Harlem Elementary.

Although the boys did not win the tournament, Colton did receive one set of boards from Polan as a prize for advancing the most in the amateur bracket. The other winner was Bryson Goodwin, a 10-year-old who attends Louisville Academy.

“The boards aren’t finished,” Polan said. “I’m going to let them finish them.”

Polan said he wanted to do something to encourage people to play the game.

The object of the game is to be the first team to score 21. If a team goes over 21, it’s busted back to 15. Teams play until someone scores 21. As losing teams dropped out, play between two teams lasted for some time.

Do Work emerged as the winning team, receiving half the pot and walking away with $135.

The team is made up of Brandon Fields and Matt Murry. Both are from Swainsboro and have been playing two years.

Murry also won a game of 50/50 or long shot. Polan set up a board at one end of the auditorium and players were required to stand 50 feet away and toss six bags at the board. The person with the most points won half the pot.

Murry won $37.50 from that game.

The other half of both pots will go to the Louisville Fire Department.

Polan said Cornhole is for anybody from the age of 6 to 100.

“It’s a lot of fun,” he said. “It’s family oriented. A lot of churches play this. They call it Toss to the Cross.”

Polan said there is even a sanctioned league, the American Cornhole Organization.

For more information about the sport, visit the ACO’s website at www.americancornhole.com.

Dumping complaint filed against Wadley

By Carol McLeod
Staff Writer

Ted Staak, program manager with the Environmental Protection Division in Augusta, confirmed last week that his office has received an open dumping complaint about a demolition site on Main Street in Wadley. Staak said it was related to open dumping of construction demolition waste, or C and D.

Madara Tyler, a specialist with the EPD, performed an initial site visit, he said.


“We did document that open dumping of the C and D material had occurred and was occurring while she was there,” he said.

“We’re at the very, very preliminary stage of the investigation. It was just a routine complaint. In any open dumping, you have to ask the question what was dumped. And then based on what was dumped, that can lead to different methods of remediation,” Staak said.

On Friday, May 31, a worker on a track hoe was moving concrete on the site.

The worker, who said he was there on behalf of the city, said he was consolidating the concrete and didn’t know what would happen after that.

The demolition of a building was taking place on city property, Staak said.

“Really there hasn’t been any new development,” Staak said this week. “We’re continuing our investigation. We don’t have any additional facts to report at this time. There is no immediate danger to the public that EPD is currently aware of.”

Staak said he was hopeful the EPD would have additional information by the end of next week.

“We have directed the city not to transport any additional debris from the demolition site until we have progressed further in our investigation,” he said.

Staak addressed what a demolition contractor or property owner should do if considering a demolition project.

“Please contact EPD prior to and we can step you through compliance,” he said, adding, “It’s basically a notification form that needs to be sent to EPD.

“If a property owner is considering demolition, EPD considers the resulting waste as demolition waste. That type of C and D waste needs to be transported to a construction demolition landfill, rather than a regular landfill.”

Staak said the EPD is continuing to investigate the open dumping complaint to determine everything related to the open dumping, including the responsible party.

Anyone with concerns regarding environmental issues can contact the EPD.

For Jefferson and Glascock counties, Staak’s office in Augusta would handle those complaints. The number for the Augusta EPD office is 706-792-7744.

Georgia children are getting healthier

By Carol McLeod
Staff Writer

Georgia’s children were once the second most obese in the United States. Now they rank 17th, based on a new report by the Centers for Disease Control, or CDC, and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics.

The report states there has been a 5 percent drop in childhood obesity rates in Georgia, the state’s department of health stated in a press release.


“We have instituted the Fitnessgram program where all children in physical education must be weighed and have their BMI done before and after the PE class,” said Dr. Donnie Hodges, an assistant superintendent with Jefferson County Board of Education. The program is from the Georgia Department of Education.

“We are also under new guidelines with school nutrition that promote more healthy choices and have eliminated soft drinks being sold in the schools. We now have vending machines that offer water, sports drinks and juices,” Hodges said.

“Children who are obese and overweight are at a higher risk for diseases such as diabetes; cardio vascular disease, or high cholesterol and high blood pressure; bone and joint problems and sleep apnea,” said Nancy Nydam, manager of media relations with the Georgia DPH.

“Long term, children who are obese are more likely to be obese as adults increasing the risk for some cancers; breast, colon, kidney, multiple myeloma and Hodgkin’s lymphoma among others. Studies also show that children who do not get enough daily physical activity do poorer academically,” she said.

Overweight and obesity are both labels for ranges of weight that are greater than what is generally considered health for a given height/weight or body mass index (BMI).

“The terms also identify ranges of weight that have been shown to increase the likelihood of certain diseases and other health problems,” she said.

Nydam said these terms also identify ranges of weight shown to increase the likelihood of certain diseases and other health problems.

Even though the recent report is encouraging, Georgia’s children still face problems.

“For Georgia children ages 10 through 17, 18.6 percent are overweight and 16.6 percent are obese,” she said. “Researchers looking at the most recent data from 2011 conclude Georgia ranks 17th in the nation for childhood obesity, third in the nation for prevalence of overweight children and 10th nationally when combining both factors – a significant change from 2007 when Georgia ranked second nationally in childhood obesity, 17th in overweight children and third nationally when combining both factors.”

Some simple steps Nydam recommends to improve children’s health include at least 60 minutes of physical activity a day.

“Keep them away from sugary snacks and beverages and food high in salt and fat,” she said. “Make sure they eat at least five fruits and vegetables every day. Limit time in front of the TV or computer or playing video games.”

For more information, visit www.childhealthdata.org.

“I would also encourage you to visit www.georgiashape.org,” she said. “Georgia SHAPE is Gov. (Nathan) Deal’s initiative to fight childhood obesity.”

Pamphlets on good nutrition are also available through the county’s health department in Louisville.

“We do the WIC (Women, Infants and Children) program and health check program that offers diet counseling for the participates,” said Janet Pilcher, nurse manager of Jefferson County’s health department.

More than 5,000 lbs of food to be distributed in Gibson

By Parish Howard

On Saturday, June 8, Family Connections and Communities in Schools of Glascock County will be distributing more than 5,000 pounds of food to those in need.

“This is the second time we have been able to do this,” said Wanda Davis, the program’s executive director. “We were so lucky to have Queensborough National Bank agree to pay half the cost of sponsoring this food distribution. This is a great partnership and they have a lot of employees from Glascock County who are looking forward to helping out.”


The Manna Distribution, sponsored by Golden Harvest Food Bank’s Manna Truck Program, Family Connection and Queensborough, will start at 8 a.m. at the Family Connection building at 370 West Main Street in Gibson.

Those attending have been asked to bring a container, bags, baskets or boxes for carrying food.

According to Davis, this is a USDA TEFAP Commodities food distribution for families and individuals who meet the federal poverty income guidlines.

“We’re not sure yet what all types of foods will be included, but it should be enough to serve 215 Glascock County families,” Davis said. “Surrounding communities have similar programs.”

Last year 197 families were served, Davis said, and the leftover food items went to support the county’s food pantry program. The pantry provides food for around 75 families every month, Davis said.

“It’s really a great thing,” she said. “Most of the money supporting it is provided by a group of churches. It’s a ministry of theirs.”

For more information on either the Manna distribution or the food pantry contact Davis at (706) 598-0722.

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