Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Local Authors to Appear at the Peachtree City Library

Saturday, January 15, 1:00 PM

The Friends of the Peachtree City Library association is pleased to announce that Carole Marsh and Steven Haner will read from and discuss their books. Following the program the authors will sign copies of their books and refreshments will be served. The public is invited to attend.

Carole Marsh

Carole Marsh is the founder of Peachtree City’s Gallopade International and the author of the immensely popular Carole Marsh Mysteries, including “America’s National Mystery Book Series,” “Around the World in 80 Mysteries,” and “Masters of Disasters.” All of Carole’s mysteries not only provide entertainment and encourage reading, but also educate by targeting SAT vocabulary and including an Accelerated Reader Quiz. Her “State Stuff” brings the United States to life with books such as the “Jography of North Carolina” and the “Georgia Puzzle Book.” She addresses contemporary issues in “The Poor Little Pelican,” drawn from the aftermath of the Gulf oil spill. Her non-fiction books include her Students Civil War Series, the Native American Heritage series, , “Little Linguistics,” and the African-American Heritage collection, “Black Jazz, Pizzazz, and Razmatazz.”

Carole relates that after being born, the next significant event in her life was receiving a library card and trying to read all the books in the Children’s Section of the library.

Her first writing experience was a newspaper article. Some years later she decided to write a book and only a year later her first book, “The Missing Head Mystery” was ready. Carole elected to self-publish and Gallopade International was born. Since then, Carole has written and published thousands of books.

Carole and husband, Bob, make their home in Peachtree City. Carole’s children Michael and Michelle, manage Gallopade and are also local residents.

Steven Haner

Drawn from the wreckage of the author’s shattered dreams, "The Picture" leads through light and shadow to discover the message inside the mess...a message for every troubled heart: Hidden in plain view, the Hand of Providence weaves a golden thread of redemption that leads to the door of discovery and wonder. Into our hand, He places the key.

The inspiration that compelled Steven to write "The Picture" occurred some twenty years ago, when horror and wonder visited his sister. She suffered the loss of her first child at the end of term, but then gave birth to triplet boys before the year had passed. The dichotomy of feelings created by these events hammered Steven. Were “reason and rhyme” players in these events? Or was it simply a “quirk of fate”? Though he looked for and found no answer in reason, it was rhyme that helped him tell the tale, and a beautiful story began to unfold.

As a child, Steven Haner discovered an artistic talent that has remained with him through the twists and turns of his life, serving him well in a variety of endeavors. Leaving college early to pursue the lofty promises of a spiritual calling, he found instead, a wife, and the lesson that lofty promises come to those who turn their heart toward the lessons of love. Twenty-nine years of marriage and four children provided the opportunity—God provided the grace. It’s the ‘light and shadow’ inside his new book, "The Picture".

Steven Haner resides in Coweta County with his wife, Sandi, two of their four children, James and Kristin, their charge, Marius Cox, and miniature dachshund, Cassie.
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Monday, December 20, 2010

Walmart Gives $2,000 to Peachtree City ASP

 (L-R) ASP Site Coordinators Cheryl Lopez, Peeples Elementary; Christine Clark, Kedron Elementary; Jennifer Campbell, Peachtree City Elementary; Patty Rose, Crabapple Lane Elementary; Robert Beasley, Walmart store manager; Sandy Jensen, Oak Grove Elementary; Carolyn Davis, Huddleston Elementary; Carol Banks, Braelinn Elementary.

A total of $2,000 in Walmart Community Grant checks has been given to seven Peachtree City After School Programs (ASP).

The Walmart in Peachtree City presented the grants to programs at Braelinn, Crabapple Lane, Huddleston, Kedron, Oak Grove, Peachtree City, and Peeples elementary schools. Each program has its own plans for the money. Some sites will purchase art supplies, crafts, and playground equipment, while others will fund science and math programming. One site will use their funds to pay tuition for three children to attend ASP so that their single mom can keep her newfound job.

“We are extremely grateful for the generosity the Peachtree City Walmart has extended to our programs. This money will be used to enhance student activity areas and to create an enjoyable environment for our students,” says Julia Simpson, director of ASP.

ASP provides services to school age children within the school buildings where they attend day school; the program operates from the end of the school day until 6:30 p.m. Funding is through parent fees, grants and donations. All donations are tax-deductible. For more information about ASP, call 770-460-3990, ext. 255.

The Walmart Foundation strives to provide opportunities that improve the lives of individuals in communities including customers and associates through financial contributions, in-kind donations and volunteerism. The corporation’s philosophy of operating globally and giving back locally involves store associates in determining how Walmart Foundation dollars are used to support causes that are important to them.

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Sunday, December 19, 2010

FCHS Band and Kohl’s Support Angel Tree Program

Thanks to the Kohl’s Cares program and the Fayette County High School Band, high school students on the CARE (Children at Risk in Education) Angel Tree will have all of their Christmas wishes granted.

For the first time ever, the band decided to make their holiday concert a fundraiser for the Angel Tree. Students and parents were asked to bring clothing, toiletries, personal care items, gift cards and other requested gifts as donations.

Additionally, Kohl’s donated $500 to the Angel Tree plus another $500 to the Fayette County High School Band through its Kohl’s Cares program. A total of 10 employees from the Douglasville department store volunteered their time at the concert. Kohl’s Cares donates $100 to a nonprofit organization for each employee volunteer.

“This has all been just truly amazing. Although the economy is still bad, people have stepped forward to make donations and help our students and families in need. I cannot thank the Fayette County High School Band and Kohl’s enough,” says Karen Spangler, CARE coordinator and organizer of the Angel Tree project.

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Friday, December 17, 2010

University of West Georgia Students to Travel to Kagoshima, Japan in Exchange Program

Amanda Norman, Fayetteville, one of seven students traveling to Japan

A group of education majors from the University of West Georgia will take part in an exchange program that will take them to Japan and bring students from that country to UWG.

The seven students will travel to Kagoshima, on the southwestern tip of Kyushu Island, and stay for three weeks in May. They will study the culture of Japan, visit K-12 schools and attend classes taught in English at Kagoshima University, said Dr. Judy Butler, chair of the International Programs Committee for the College of Education.

“They are just wonderful hosts and this is a beautiful seaport,” Butler said. “We hope this will enlarge their view of other cultures.”

The Japanese students will arrive at the University of West Georgia in March and stay six weeks, Butler said.

The four UWG juniors making the trip are: Kelly Wolk, of Marietta; Jessica Scanlan, of Newnan; and Amber Rogers and Kathleen Fackler, both of LaGrange. 

The three seniors are: Amanda Norman, of Fayetteville; Whitney Johnson, of Carrollton; and LaCinda Adamson, of Bowdon.

“I’m really excited to experience something different,” said Wolk, who graduated from Pope High School in 2008. “It’s good to know what it’s like outside the U.S…. This will be three weeks of immersion in their culture.”

Dr. Walter Todd, director of the Japanese Exchange Program 2011 and a faculty member of UWG’s Leadership and Applied Instruction Department, and Dr. Tamra Ogletree, of Collaborative Support and Intervention, will accompany the students.

This is the second year that the University of West Georgia has sent exchange students to Japan, Butler said.

When the students return they will speak to classes about their trip. They will also complete several online assignments.

To participate, the students submitted applications to a selection committee and completed interviews.

School System and Fayette Holiday Helpers Thank Community for Generosity

Thanks to the generosity of the Fayette community, assistance from Fayette Holiday Helpers, local businesses, private citizens and employees of the Fayette County Public School System, all angels on the CARE (Children at Risk in Education) Angel Tree will have their wishes granted and then some.

Over 400 angels, representing students and their families who are in need, were part of this year’s Angel Tree project. Counselors at each school identified students who met the special requirements mandatory for inclusion: all adults in the household must be working or legitimately trying to find work, and the family’s combined income is not sufficient to make ends meet.

Angel requests are non-traditional and include basic need items such as clothing, blankets, space heaters, toiletries, and laundry detergent. While priority is given to meeting the basic need requests, donors do not stop there. Generally, they make sure that angels are also given some non-requested, fun items such as toys, bicycles and games.

“We couldn’t do this each year without the generosity of our community and organizations like Fayette Holiday Helpers. Thanks to all of the donations from churches, businesses, civic organizations and individuals, many children and their families will have a merrier holiday season. I just want to thank everyone from the bottom of my heart for making these angel wishes come true,” says Karen Spangler, the school system’s CARE coordinator.

Although the Angel Tree project is seasonal, the needs for students and their families are not. The CARE program assists those in need all year long by helping with After School Program tuition scholarships, extra curricular program fees, and various activity dues so that all students can feel a sense of inclusion and take full advantage of their school experiences. To make a donation, contact Spangler at spangler.karen@fcboe.org or call 770-460-3990.

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North Fayette Students Remember Soldiers at Christmas

Sweet treats and holiday cheer are on their way to brighten soldiers’ holidays in Afghanistan thanks to students in the After School Program (ASP) at North Fayette Elementary.

The students wanted to show appreciation for one of their own, Jimi Moutrie, who is serving in the US Army in Afghanistan and will be spending Christmas there this year. Jimi is the son of fifth grade teacher Kendra Brown and regularly visits the ASP program when he is home on leave.

“The students wanted to show their appreciation to our soldiers for their bravery in Afghanistan by preparing a box full of treats and greeting cards to send to them,” says Margie Bennett, the school’s ASP site coordinator.

The students sent enough treats and cards for Jimi to share with his fellow troops.

This is the second time North Fayette ASP students have sent gifts to Afghanistan this year. Projects like these are part of the ASP model that emphasizes not only extended learning, but also character building through citizenship, leadership and community service.

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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Eight J C Booth Students Arrested for Alleged Gang Offenses

While most students at J C Booth Middle School in Fayette County were busy working on exams and looking forward to the holidays, the Peachtree City Police Department arrested eight female students for alleged gang related offenses.

While the charges are unclear at the moment, it was reported in a letter sent home by the J C Booth Middle School Administration that one of the charges filed was for "carrying a weapon on school property."

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McIntosh High School Piano Player Selected for State’s Highest Honor

Only one student in the entire state can play piano for the All State Jazz Band.

In January, Gerand McDowell will take to the stage in Savannah to give the performance of a lifetime as the chosen piano player for the band, which will play a concert during the Georgia Music Educators Association (GMEA) In-Service Conference January 27-29.

McDowell, who attends McIntosh High, is the only student from the school ever chosen for the band. He is also the only student in Fayette County to make this year’s cut.

Among the pieces McDowell and the band will perform include “Milestones” by Miles Davis, “Superstition” by Stevie Wonder, and “Night in Tunisia” by Dizzy Gillespie.

In preparation for the concert, McDowell will learn under the direction of Rodney T. Whitaker, an internationally renowned bassist and Mack Avenue recording artist, who is the Professor of Jazz Bass and Director of Jazz Studies at Michigan State University.

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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Cafeteria Manager Wins Milk Cooler for School

Whitewater High School Cafeteria Manager Katherine Denfeld’s participation in “Strive for 35˚,” a milk temperature survey sponsored by the Southeast United Dairy Industry Association, Inc., has scored a new milk cooler for the school.

The purpose of the survey was to encourage food service professionals to test the temperature of their milk to ensure that it is being served between 35˚ and 40˚ F. Milk tastes best and has a longer shelf life when stored between these temperatures. Shelf life is shortened by 50 percent for every 5-degree increase in temperature over 40˚F.

The survey required four separate temperature checks using a calibrated thermometer from various locations inside each of the school’s milk coolers throughout one lunch period. Some reasons why milk may not be at the correct temperature include overloading the milk cooler, a malfunctioning cooler or leaving the lid of the cooler open between lunch periods.

By taking part in the survey, Denfeld is ensuring that Whitewater High students will choose milk by serving it the way it tastes best. Dairy foods, such as milk, supply three of the five nutrients children and adolescents need: calcium, potassium and magnesium.

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Monday, December 13, 2010

Rep Matt Ramsey, D.A. King to Speak on Immigration Reform Tuesday Night

December 14, 2010: Immigration reform educational meeting. Learn about the immigration reform bill to be considered by the 2011 session of the Georgia General Assembly.

Free Event

When: Tuesday evening, 12/14/10 @ 6:45 PM - 8:15 PM. Where: Whitewater Creek Amenities Center (upstairs Redwine room), 165 Birkdale Drive, Fayetteville. Birkdale Drive is the entrance to the Whitewater Creek Golf Course on Redwine Road, Fayetteville.

Speakers:

Matt Ramsey serves as House Chair of the Joint Committee on Immigration Reform. He is the state representative for district 72 and has served as Chair of the Crimes Against Children and Illegal Substances Committee of the House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee. Representative Ramsey was appointed by Governor Perdue to serve as one of his Administration's House Floor Leaders.

D.A. King is President of the American Resistance Foundation and the Dustin Inman Society. Mr. King is a nationally known immigration expert and has appeared numerous times before Congress, the Georgia General Assembly and on many local and national
radio and television programs.

Each of the speakers will address the audience and then participate in a question and answer period.

Sponsors:

Fayette-Coweta 912 Patriots, Greater Fayette Republican Women's Club, Fayette County Tea Party, South Atlanta Tea Party and the Senoia Tea Party Patriots. For more information call Jim Richter @ 770-632-9618 or email: fc912p@gmail.com.

Payless Shoes and Holiday Helpers Grant Wishes of Angels

Helen Rickman of Fayette Holiday Helpers (left) and Karen Spangler with the school system’s CARE program accepted the donation of 150 gift coupons at the Payless Shoe Source in Fayetteville from store manager Johnathan Dennis.

Thanks to Payless Shoe Source in Fayetteville and Helen Rickman of Fayette Holiday Helpers, 150 students in need of shoes on the CARE (Children at Risk in Education) Angel Tree will have their requests granted.

The 2010 Payless Gives Shoes 4 Kids program is a grass roots campaign to deliver $1.2 million in free shoes to children of families in need. Fayette Holiday Helpers was one of the nonprofits selected to receive gift coupons redeemable for children’s shoes; each gift coupon is worth $15. Fayette Holiday Helpers, which assists with the CARE Angel Tree project each year, donated all 150 gift coupons to help fulfill the wishes of Fayette County’s public school students. This marks the third year that Payless Shoe Source has provided the gift coupons.

“This is unprecedented. I cannot thank Payless and Holiday Helpers enough for their support. We have many children who are going to be thrilled to receive a new pair of shoes,” says Karen Spangler, the school system’s CARE coordinator.

The CARE Angel Tree project is designed to help working families struggling to make ends meet provide basic needs for their children. The tree fulfills nontraditional needs such as clothing, after school program scholarships, eyeglasses and dental work. All adults in the household must be employed in order for students to qualify for the program.

Photo source:  Fayette County Board of Education

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Saturday, December 11, 2010

Two Fayette County Residents Earn Master’s Degrees from Clayton State

Two individuals from Fayette County recently graduated from Clayton State University with master’s degrees.

Fayetteville’s Barbara James, a teacher at Rising Starr Middle School and the first recipient (in 2008) of the Clayton State University Retirees Association Scholarship, has earned a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies. An additional story on James will be forthcoming next week.

Peachtree City’s Nicholas Ross Cushnie earned a Master of Arts in Teaching Mathematics, one of the first two master’s degrees awarded from the University’s College of Information and Mathematical Sciences.

A total of 20 individuals will receive master’s degrees from Clayton State at the Dec. 10, Fall 2010 Hooding Ceremony. A unit of the University System of Georgia, Clayton State University is an outstanding comprehensive metropolitan university located 15 miles southeast of downtown Atlanta.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Fayetteville Police Arrest former Zaxby’s employee for 2007 Armed Robbery of Zaxby’s store.

The Fayetteville Police arrested Erika Tiggs, a former Zaxby’s employee, for her part in an armed robbery which had occurred at the Fayetteville Zaxby’s. On August 6, 2007, two suspects entered the Zaxby’s store on GA Hwy 85, forced the employees into a cooler and robbed the store of approximately $2000.00 in cash.

Police obtained evidence at the scene which was sent to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) Crime lab to determine if there was DNA present. Detectives received notification from the GBI that there was DNA present. Detectives then obtained DNA from Tiggs, who had been identified as a suspect early in the investigation.

Detectives were recently notified that the DNA sample from Tiggs matched the sample obtained from evidence at the scene. Detectives received an arrest warrant and took Tiggs into custody this morning at her job, without incident.

In July of this year, three other suspects pled guilty to robbing a Zaxby’s employee in a separate incident that had occurred on February 9, 2009. Fayetteville Police are investigating the possibility that the two incidents are related. Anyone with information about these cases is encouraged to contact Detective Scott Israel at the Fayetteville Police Department (770) 719-4223.

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Fayetteville Cops Spread Christmas Cheer

On Saturday, December 4, 2010, the Fayetteville Police conducted the 7th annual “Christmas with the Police”.  Four Fayetteville families, with a total of 17 children, were treated to a day of fun, food and gifts.

The families were chosen based on recommendations from the Fayette County Board of Education the Department of Family and Children’s Services and an interview with Fayetteville Police Officers. Detective Lieutenant Debbie Chambers, who initiated the program back in 2003, stated “this is a way for the department to give back to a community that is very supportive of its law enforcement”. Chambers also recognizes that because of the current economic situation, Christmas would not have been as cheerful for the children.

Chambers stated the program would not have been possible without the support of the Fayetteville business community including Wal-Mart, Stevi B’s Pizza, Dixieland Fun Park, Chick-Fil-A, the Red Hat Society, the Fayette Civitans, Fayetteville Main Street, B&R United Public Safety Supply, Dr. Rick Verdin, DDS and the Fellowship of Christian Peace Officers. Chambers also stated many private citizens made financial donations to the program.

Chambers stated the program will continue as long as the support remains as strong as it has. Anyone who may want to contribute to the Christmas with Police program is encouraged to contact Detective Chambers at (770) 719-4215.

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Charity Concert Nets Largest Donation Yet

A free charity concert sponsored by local school choirs raised over $2,600 in donations for the Joseph Sams School.

Choirs from Cleveland Elementary, Inman Elementary, Fayetteville Intermediate, Bennett’s Mill Middle, Fayette Middle and Fayette County High, along with the high school’s wind ensemble, collected the concert’s largest donation in its 5-year history, and more than doubled what was raised last year.

The concert was held December 4 at Harp’s Crossing Baptist Church. All of the proceeds raised directly benefit the Joseph Sams School. This marks the second consecutive year the special needs school has been the concert’s benefactor.

“We really like the idea of a local charity because, as it turns out, many members of the audience have friends or family who have been impacted by the school. Many people came up after the concert telling us stories of children they know who have been influenced by the Sams School,” says Christina Owens, music teacher/chorus director at Fayetteville Intermediate.

The idea for the concert originally began five years ago with Lisa Howe, assistant principal of Fayetteville Intermediate who was teaching music at Cleveland Elementary at the time, retired Fayette County High Band Director Kenny Beard and Fayette County High Choral Director Richard Prouty.
They wanted to find a way to give back to the community and involve the schools that feed into Fayette County High.

“I presented the idea to our cluster during the music teacher’s meeting in the fall of 2005. I told everyone that I wanted this to be a concert that gave back to the community and also that I wanted the donations to help support a children’s charity,” says Prouty.

In previous years, the concert collected toys for Toys for Tots. Last year marked the first time the concert collected monetary donations for the Joseph Sams School. Organizers are not sure if the concert will benefit the school next year, but they plan to stay with local charities.

“The concert is a great experience for our students. It helps them learn compassion and giving at a young age,” Owens comments.

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Wednesday, December 08, 2010

December 9 Holiday Band Concert Benefits CARE

For the first time ever, the Fayette County High School Band holiday concert will benefit high school students in need.

The band has partnered with the school system’s CARE (Children at Risk in Education) program to help fulfill requests from high school students on the program’s Angel Tree. School counselors recommend students for the Angel Tree if they and their families are in need of financial assistance. Parents must work or be actively looking for work in order for students to qualify.

Groups and individuals who sponsor angels tend to gravitate toward younger students, often leaving behind those at the high school level. That’s why Dr. Myra Rhoden, the school’s band director, decided to turn the concert into a benefit to collect items for students at all five of the county’s high schools.

“In this economic climate, many high schoolers are supporting themselves and/or helping support their families. Other groups that send in toys and clothing for younger children often forget many of these students. We want to assist the high school students who fall into this category,” says Rhoden.

Band parents and students are being asked to donate items for both boys and girls that will be given as Christmas gifts through the Angel Tree project. Requested items that have been identified by CARE are as follows: coats (may be gently used), socks and underwear, scented lotions/perfumes, toiletries, jewelry, gift cards, CDs, canned goods, and any item a teen-aged child would like to receive as a gift.

“It is amazing about the absolute miracles that are happening for this project,” says Karen Spangler, CARE coordinator and organizer of the Angel Tree. “I want to thank Dr. Rhoden and the Fayette County High School Band for being a part of those miracles.”

If you would like to help, contact Fayette County High School at 770-460-3540. The band’s holiday concert is scheduled for December 9 at the school.

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WordMaster Competitors of McIntosh Earn National Honors

The WordMasters Challenge team at McIntosh High is ranked 10th in the nation after the first meet held in October.

A total of 83 students from Andrea Lakly and Jane Edwards’ Advanced Placement (AP) Literature classes were among the 15,285 seniors and 146 teams participating in the challenge, a national competition for students in grades 9-12 that encourages close reading of many different kinds of prose and poetry.

Not only is McIntosh ranked 10th nationally, but senior Ashley Gibson also earned a perfect score in the meet and placed among the 85 highest scoring 12th graders in the country.

The Challenge’s reading material uses language skillfully to convey layers and shades of meaning not always apparent to students on a first or casual reading. Reading materials and questions are similar to those on AP exams. Challenges are done at school; students compete with others in their grade level.

There are four challenges a year, October, December, February, and April. After all four meets, the 25 most outstanding high schools and approximately 100 individual student winners are recognized.

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Thursday, December 02, 2010

Fayette County School-Level Teachers of the Year Announced

The first step toward finding Fayette’s 2011 Teacher of the Year (TOTY) is complete.

Last month teachers at all 29 schools voted for the person they thought most deserved to be their school’s TOTY. These school-level nominees are now competing to become one of three finalists who will be selected as the county’s overall winner.

They will fill out a comprehensive application explaining their teaching philosophy, why they chose to become a teacher, what they can do to better the profession, and their thoughts and solutions on issues facing today’s educators. Three judges, a retired Fayette County teacher, a retired Fayette County principal, and last year’s Fayette County Teacher of the Year, will read and independently rate each application. The three finalists will be announced late January or early February 2011.
Here are the school-level nominees:

(Elementary)
Katie Salisbury, Braelinn
Kimberlee Wright, Brooks
Tarkesia Williamson, Cleveland
Michelle Mayne, Crabapple Lane
Roberta Haren, Fayetteville Intermediate
Jane Williams, Hood Avenue Primary
Andi McPeak, Huddleston
Charlie Harper, Inman
Cheri Brooks, Kedron
Cheryl Busby, North Fayette
Karen Eller, Oak Grove
Justine Van Nimwegen, Peachtree City
Jennifer Stadelmeyer, Peeples
Nicole Williams, Robert J. Burch
Sherri Harris, Sara Harp Minter
Nicole (Nikki) Mosley, Spring Hill
Johnna Davis, Tyrone

(Middle)
Scott Ashmore, Bennett’s Mill
Aimee Gumerson, Fayette
Monica Reckley, Flat Rock
Jeff Eller, J.C. Booth
Susan Stohrer, Rising Starr
Julie Lunceford, Whitewater

(High)
Margo Wimbish, Alternative
Tim Miller, Fayette County
Shelley Dowse, McIntosh
Keelan Seabolt, Sandy Creek
Jonathan Winkjer, Starr’s Mill
Krystin Glover, Whitewater

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Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Santa Claus is Coming to Town, Weekends December 4 - 19

Santa visiting Peachtree City neighborhoods on a Fire Engine, collecting donations for the PTC Fire Department Food Drive

A visit from jolly old St. Nicholas on Christmas Eve is heralded by sleigh bells, but Santa will be making the rounds early in Peachtree City to a chorus of sirens, courtesy of the Peachtree City Fire Department and Volunteer Firefighters Association. Each year, the firefighters stand in for Santa’s elves to escort Mr. Kringle through Peachtree City neighborhoods, collecting canned goods for local needy families (and helping Santa double check that naughty and nice list).

Fire Chief Ed Eiswerth said, “With the tough economic times, local food pantries are running low on supplies. We want to help make sure everyone has enough to eat this holiday season, and are proud that Santa takes time out of his busy December to make the food drive fun for the community.”

The department will escort Santa, on board a Fire Engine, around town for the first three weekends in December. Area residents are invited to come out, wave, and donate non-perishable food items if they are able. The route includes virtually every neighborhood in Peachtree City,

The detailed list of neighborhoods and dates is available online at www.peachtree-city.org/santa, but Santa will follow the general route outlined below.

Santa’s Route in Peachtree City

On Saturday, December 4, Santa will arrive at the very northern end of Peachtree City at about 9:00 a.m., starting with the neighborhoods around Ardenlee and Belvedere, over to Georgian Park and Regents Park, then down Peachtree Parkway North to finish up in the neighborhoods off Walt Banks Road at around 4:00 p.m.

Saturday evening, Santa will be at City Hall Plaza at around 7:00 p.m. for the tree lighting portion of the annual Hometown Holiday celebration.

At noon on Sunday, December 5, Santa will start out in the neighborhoods along Flat Creek Road, then visit the neighborhoods around Peachtree Crossing, then head down Stevens Entry to the Bridlepath and Windgate area, and back up Robinson Road by 6:00 p.m.

The following weekend, Santa will begin Saturday, December 11, at 9:00 a.m. in the Blue Smoke Trail area, then proceed to the neighborhoods around Kedron Drive, down Pinegate, over to Wisdom Road, and end at Blueberry Hill at 4:00 p.m. Sunday, December 12, at noon will find him along MacDuff Parkway, followed by Planterra Ridge, then over to Clover Reach, Hip Pocket, and the neighborhoods off McIntosh Trail west and around Booth Middle School.

Santa’s final weekend will kick off on Saturday, December 18, heading south on Peachtree Parkway from Crosstown Road, looping around Braelinn Road, then heading over to Holly Grove Road before heading back up Robinson Road to the Estates and Village on the Green by 4:00 p.m. On Sunday, December 19, Santa will start out at noon at Camp Creek Estates on Robinson, head over McIntosh Trail, down the Parkway, then east on Crosstown to Cameron Trail. He’ll head back down Robinson, including Robinson Woods and Bradford Estates, to the neighborhoods on Ebenezer. Finally, he’ll head through The Marks to the neighborhoods off Log House, ending at 6:00 p.m. at Prestwick.

Residents who miss Santa during his visit may drop off a food item at one of Peachtree City’s Fire Stations. The department is also collecting new, unwrapped toys for local distribution by Toys for Tots.

Tree is a Chart Topper at Noel November

Huddleston Elementary School’s After School Program “Topping the Charts” Christmas tree was a big hit at Noel November, taking second place at the annual fundraiser.

The 1950s themed tree featured spinning toy ornaments dangling from its branches along with CDs painted to resemble old 45-rpm records. A poodle skirt with finger-knitted poodle-clip dogs decorated the bottom.

After school programs at Robert J. Burch Elementary and Fayetteville Intermediate also had trees at the event. Proceeds benefitted The Joseph Sams School, the Breast Cancer Survivors Network, Embracing Military Families, and Promise Place.

“Community service is one of the components of the After School Program philosophy,” says Julia Simpson, the program director. “We know that out-of–school time is as important to children’s growth and development as time spent in the classroom. The after school curriculum is designed to compliment the educational component with a focus on character, health and fitness, and, most importantly, extended learning. This project enabled us to be part of a community effort to help others.”

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Monday, November 29, 2010

Fayetteville Police Department: Christmas Parade Traffic Delay

A Christmas parade will be held in Downtown Fayetteville this Saturday, December 4th at 4:30 PM. Spectators are encouraged to be at the Stonewall complex and on the south side of the downtown square prior to the start of the parade for best viewing when the parade arrives on Highway 85.

Anyone traveling through Fayetteville between 4:30 PM and 5:30 PM will experience traffic delays on Highway 85 and Highway 54 because of the parade.

The Fayetteville Police Department will detour southbound Highway 85 traffic to Grady Ave. and northbound Highway 85 traffic to Jimmie Mayfield Blvd. once the parade starts. Drivers are encouraged to plan ahead to avoid the delay.

If you have any questions, you may contact the Fayetteville Police Department at (770) 461-4441 or the Fayetteville Main Street office for general parade info at 770-719-4173.

Drive safe and enjoy the holiday season!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Thank-You Letters Generate Unique Gift of Appreciation

A simple letter-writing lesson generated an unexpected surprise for a Rising Starr Middle teacher and her class.

Elizabeth McCullough, who teaches eighth grade history, had her students write “thank-you” letters to soldiers, firemen and policeman in remembrance of the events of 9-11. The letters for the soldiers were sent to Colonel Ronald Ross, Chief of Staff ACSE-A, for distribution to servicemen and women serving in Kabul, Afghanistan. Recipients included soldiers in the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines.

Much to McCullough’s surprise, the Colonel, now home from Kabul, unexpectedly showed up at her classroom door the morning of Veterans Day to present the students with a certificate and a special gift for her, a map of Afghanistan made from various rocks and stones found in the country.

“It was so thoughtful and beautiful,” McCullough said of the map. “ It is always so nice for teachers to just get a verbal thank you for our work, but this was overwhelming.”

McCullough said she had her students write the letters to get them thinking about how and why our forefathers began this country, and how and why we continue to keep this way of life.

“It is good that teens see the sacrifices that are made for our country. It is a good lesson for them to give thanks,” she said.

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School Angels Need Your Help

(Back Row) Fayette Holiday Helpers Sandy Hogan, Charlie Hogan and Ann Martin with (Front Row) Diann Ferrante and Karen Spangler, co-coordinators of the CARE Angel Tree Project.

Nearly 400 students need your help so they can have a brighter holiday season.

The Fayette County Public School System’s annual CARE (Children at Risk in Education) Angel Tree project is underway and the needs of students are reflective of the current economic situation in Fayette, the state and nation. The number of students needing help is up by 100 from last year.

The CARE Angel Tree is different from most holiday donation projects in that gift requests are for non-traditional items. Needs this year include children’s clothing, shoes, toiletries, and personal hygiene products. There is also a need for gift cards from grocery and discount stores for the purchase of food, gas and other basic necessities.

“We have a number of high school students who are working to help support their families due to their parents losing their jobs or having to take a lower paying job,” says CARE Coordinator Karen Spangler. “These students are from families of the working poor, many are experiencing this way of life for the first time.”

Angel requests span across all grade levels and areas of the county. In order for a student to make a gift request, at least one of the parents must be working or legitimately trying to find work. Counselors at each school identify those who are in need and make recommendations for placement in the angel project if the students and their families meet the required guidelines.

Besides basic needs, counselors have also identified some additional “wish-list” items for their angels. Over 100 requests have been received for bicycles, both male and female, for all ages. Toys, board games, puzzles and books have also been requested.

The community can select an angel off the Angel Tree board in Building “B” of the LaFayette Educational Center, located behind Arby’s on Georgia Highway 85 in Fayetteville. All angel donations must be turned in to the LaFayette Educational Center by December 13 in order for them to be distributed to the students before they break for the semester.

Persons who would rather make a donation instead of sponsoring a particular child can do so by dropping off basic need items, non-perishable foods or gift cards at the front desk of Building “B” of the LaFayette Educational Center. These donations will help stock the holiday shopping center the last week before the semester break, giving school counselors an opportunity to shop for last minute needs for families who have just moved into the area or lost a job, got evicted, etc.

“This has been a huge success the past three years. We always have students who suddenly find themselves in need just before the holidays. Donations to the holiday shopping center are greatly appreciated so that we can help our students have a brighter holiday season,” says Spangler.

For questions about the CARE Angel Tree Project or directions to the LaFayette Educational Center, please contact Karen Spangler, 770-460-3990.

Fayette Holiday Helpers assist in fulfilling angel requests each year. Donations for the CARE Angel Tree Project can also be done through Fayette Holiday Helpers. Call 678-817-0004 or 770-487-9715 to make a donation.

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Silver Bells Are Ringing Again in Clayton and Fayette Counties

2010 marks the 119th season The Salvation Army Red Kettles will sound their joyous bells outside of retailers around the world. Monday, November 22, thirty-five Salvation Army Clayton and Fayette County Bellringers were among the 25,000 throughout the world extending holiday greetings, and raising much-needed funds to provide help and hope to those less fortunate.

“We make no apologies for the growing number of Salvation Army Red Kettles you’ve undoubtedly noticed in your community over the years,” explains Captain Jose Marques, The Salvation Army Jonesboro Corps Officer.

“It is not business as usual anymore at The Salvation Army, or for any other nonprofit or business for that matter. The demand is evident from our phones being flooded with thousands of hurting callers, to our shelter beds filled to capacity with homeless mothers, fathers and children every evening. Every red kettle you encounter, every ‘silver bell’ a kettle worker rings, is there to serve as a call to action not to forget that people are hurting, right here in this community, even as we celebrate this joyous season.”

The Salvation Army 2010 Red Kettle Campaign will run through December 24, in hopes of generating $200,000 in kettles throughout its thirteen-county area.

“Yes, it’s an ambitious goal during these tough times,” recognizes Marques who says the campaign raised $191,000 in Clayton and Fayette Counties last kettle season, and that the organization’s Metro Atlanta Area command provided over $2.3 million in holiday assistance through toys, clothing, meals, and other items last Thanksgiving and Christmas.

“But it’s not an un-attainable one when we know that in times of great hardship metro Atlanta residents have always stepped up to help us help their hurting friends and neighbors.”

Friends and neighbors, Marques says, who may have been among the 20,000 men, women and children who were first-time recipients of Salvation Army services last year. Or, who may have recently lost a home or a job, or who be among those who have been fortunate enough to retain or regain employment this year and will be among the thousands seeking a helping hand as they work to put the pieces of their lives back together.”

This year, for its part, The Salvation Army has worked to enhance its traditional red kettle program with an Online Red Kettle where donors can make their holiday donation online and helps spread the word to family and friends through Facebook Widgets and emails.

Additionally, nearly 50 Red Kettle Bellringers will be equipped with wireless credit card machines at that will allow holiday shoppers to make their kettle donation with a swipe of a card.

To make a donation, or find out more about The Salvation Army’s Online and Red Kettle program in metro Atlanta visit www.salvationarmyatlanta.org.

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Friday, November 26, 2010

“Gift Your Library” Holiday Campaign

The Friends of the Peachtree City Library have announced their 2010 “Gift Your Library” holiday campaign. The Friends suggest that instead of giving someone another tie or candle, consider donating $25 in their name to the library. The donation will be used to purchase a book for the library, and the honoree will receive a gift card acknowledging the donation. It’s a great gift, and not just for family members and friends. Think about honoring co-workers, teachers, and employees, as well.

In addition to the gift card sent to the honoree, the Friends will insert a bookplate in the purchased books, acknowledging both the donor and the honoree.

Lani Clancy, President of the Friends, noted that with the austerity of the city budget, “…it’s even more important that we—as citizens, patrons, and friends of the library—help. This program has a special benefit. Several members of the Friends have pledged to underwrite the cost of gift cards, mailing, and bookplates, so all money donated goes directly to buy books.”

Donation forms are available at the library. An email version that can be printed on your home computer may be requested from ptc.library.friends@gmail.com. The Friends of the Library (Peachtree City Library Corporation) is a 501(c)3 corporation; your donation may be tax deductible.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Fayette County Students Score Almost Perfect on Writing Test

Fayette’s high school students nearly posted a 100 percent pass rate on the fall 2010 Georgia High School Writing Test.

The pass rate for first-time 11th grade regular program students was 99 percent with only one percent not meeting standards. The pass rate is up two percent from last year with the percentage not meeting standards dropping two percent. The percent of students exceeding standards was 18 percent, the same as last year.

State-level comparisons show that 97 percent of Georgia’s first time 11th grade regular students passed the test, nine percent exceeded.

All of the county’s high schools raised their pass rates from 2009, earning 99 percent across the board with the exception of Whitewater High, which had a 100 percent pass rate. In comparison to 2009, Fayette County High’s pass rate increased two percent, McIntosh increased three percent, Sandy Creek increased three percent, Starr’s Mill increased one percent, and Whitewater increased three percent.

All schools posted double digits in the “exceeds” category ranging from 14 to 24 percent. Both McIntosh and Sandy Creek saw large jumps in this category with McIntosh up five percent and Sandy Creek up a whopping 17 percent from 2009.

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Friday, November 19, 2010

Fayette Middle School Student Named First Down For Fitness MVP

Omar Hancock-Howard with math teacher Rica Smith.

A seventh grader at Fayette Middle has made a first down with the Falcons, not on the field but in the classroom.

Omar Hancock-Howard has been selected as an Atlanta Falcons 2010 First Down for Fitness MVP from over 28,000 participants in the program. His math teacher, Rica Smith, nominated him for outstanding effort in achievement during her class’ participation in the First Down for Fitness program that incorporated math instruction with an emphasis on physical activity.

Falcons First Down for Fitness is a three-month program (September 1 through November 26) designed to challenge third through seventh graders throughout the state to participate in fitness activities, eat healthy, and lead a healthy lifestyle. Participants are encouraged to be active 60 minutes a day, seven days a week as a means of maintaining success, good work ethic, and overall health and wellness.

As an MVP winner, Omar will be an honored guest at the Falcons game on November 28 against the Green Bay Packers. He has also received a backpack filled with Falcons memorabilia and a “Play 60” jersey to wear to the game.

Photo Source:  Fayette County Board of Education
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Thursday, November 18, 2010

Chisum Named Athlete of the Year

A Sandy Creek High football player has just netted his school $5,000 by being selected as the WSB-TV Sports Zone Montlick & Associates Athlete of the Year.

Alex Chisum, a senior, was selected for the honor after being one of three finalists who received the most votes from an online survey. Chisum was selected as the Sports Zone Athlete of the Week earlier in the season, making him a candidate for the grand prize. He joined 10 other Athlete’s of the Week vying for the coveted award.

From November 6-14, the public was asked to vote on their favorite Athlete of the Week. The three with the highest number of votes were named finalists. A panel of judges with experience in television production and sports broadcasting selected the winner based on the athlete’s on field contributions (75%) and the athlete’s off field contributions (25%).

Chisum excels both on field and off. Not only has he helped his team have a winning season this year, but also is a high academic achiever and member of the National Honor Society. He will attend the University of Cincinnati next year on an athletic scholarship.

In addition to the $5,000 given to the school by Montlick &Associates, Chisum received a trophy and will be featured on WSB-TV’s Sports Zone on November 19. The Sports Zone crew filmed the segment at Sandy Creek on November 16.

Photo source:  Fayette County Board of Education

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Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Norman Named Georgia’s Outstanding Social Studies Teacher of the Year

Students love her history classes, so much so that she has earned a reputation as being one of the best teachers in her school and in the Fayette County Public School System. Now that reputation has extended statewide.

The Georgia Council for the Social Studies has named Janet Norman of Fayette County High Georgia’s Outstanding Social Studies Teacher of the Year.

Norman lives and breaths history, and it shows. She has created a number of “traveling trunks” full of artifacts she has collected from her travels. She uses them in class to help students connect to history and develop an appreciation for the past.

Her dedication to her students and their understanding of history is evident in the amount of time she spends outside of the classroom preparing teaching materials that capture and hold their attention. To date, she has created 23 PowerPoint presentations that address each standard from the GPS for U.S. History, all done on her personal time.

She does not catch a break in the summer either. She has participated in all three of Fayette’s Teaching American History Grants spanning 2003 to 2010. Grant participants spend the summer learning about a specific era of American history and have the opportunity to travel to various areas of the country to visit historical sites and listen to guest lecturers. Each grant is a two-year commitment. Not intent on slowing down any time soon, Norman is applying to participate in a fourth Teaching American History grant that has been awarded to the school system.

As Georgia’s Outstanding Social Studies Teacher of the Year, Norman received a $250 cash award and a two-year comprehensive membership to the National Council for the Social Studies.

In order to be nominated, teachers must utilize activities that demonstrate significant service and foster the development of democratic values and citizenship in the classroom, school, and community; show efforts toward improving student learning; exhibit professional involvement beyond the normal job requirements; and use multiple sources to enhance social studies instruction.

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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Local Veterans Honored at Dogwood Forest Assisted Living

Pictured (l-r) are Randy Martinez,  Glenda Martinez,  J. J. Klauss,  Dale Klauss, ; Linda Robinson, Phyllis King,  Susan Sloan,  Betty Harrah, Natalie Davis, Denny Leander,  Patsy Leander, and Bill Cain.

Dogwood Forest Assisted Living in Fayetteville was the site of patriotic pride on Veterans Day as 15 veterans were honored for their service to America.  The James Waldrop Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution presented certificates of appreciation and goody bags to the veterans while the American Legion Post 105 honored the veterans with certificates, flags and pins. 

The James Waldrop Chapter DAR is chartered in Fayetteville, GA.

Photo source:  James Waldrop Chapter DAR

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Monday, November 15, 2010

McIntosh Makes High Q History

Posing on the set of High Q following their history making victory are Scott Bradford, Karen Anderson, Nathan Pearson, and Logan Austin.

Anyone watching High Q (the scholastic high school competition on WSB-TV Channel 2) Sunday afternoon witnessed history in the making as the McIntosh High Academic Team garnered the most points ever earned by a single team on the game show.

McIntosh scored 910 points to Grady High School’s respectable 460 points. Not only did McIntosh win, earning the highest score ever, but also the combined score of the two teams was the highest in the show’s 25-year history.

Members of McIntosh’s Academic Team are Karen Anderson (captain), Logan Austin, Scott Bradford, and Nathan Pearson. Team coach Lynne Bruschetti says reading and retention is what makes the team successful.

“They are inquisitive students who read everything they can get their hands on. When they read, they remember everything that they read,” she says.

The team practices at least once a week from August until the end of the season in February, but they often get in a second session by joining the Junior Varsity practice. In addition to studying subjects such as history, math, literature, science and the arts, the team prepared for High Q by looking at current events that were making headlines the week of the competition.

This was the first year in several seasons of High Q that a high school from the Fayette County Public School System had appeared on the show; systems are chosen at random each year. In order to determine which high school would represent Fayette, a local competition between the county’s high school academic teams was held.

McIntosh will attempt to repeat their stellar performance on January 16 when the team returns to High Q to take on Walton High.

High Q airs weekly Sunday afternoons on WSB-TV Channel 2.

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Friday, November 12, 2010

Veterans Get a Heroes Celebration at Spring Hill Elementary

Robert Ryff, U.S. Coast Guard, salutes students as they welcome him to the Veterans Day assembly.

Students dressed in red and white and holding American flags lined the hallway of Spring Hill Elementary to welcome over 60 veterans who were honored at the school on Veterans Day.

Both retired and active service military personnel from the U.S. Army, Air Force, Marines, Navy, and Coast Guard were recognized and thanked for their service and sacrifices. The students recited “Heroes Die for Me” and sang “Song for the Unsung Hero,” among a number of other patriotic songs, as their honorees watched and listened from the stage of the school’s cafeteria.

Among the honored guests was Lt. Col. (Ret.) Sharon Collins, former assistant principal of Spring Hill Elementary and mother of Army 1st Lt. Robert Collins who was killed in Iraq earlier this year. All staff members wore a star with Robert Collins’ picture in his honor. Also among the veterans honored was the school’s principal, Lt. Col. (Ret.) Randy Hudson.

Students presented each veteran with a special medallion to commemorate the day as their names and branch of military were announced. Veterans who fought in WW II, the Vietnam War and Operation Iraqi Freedom were in attendance.

Each grade level, K through fifth, also presented a HeroBox to Tyrone resident Ryan Housley, founder and executive director of HeroBox.org. Each box contained food, personal hygiene and entertainment items that have been requested by deployed soldiers. The third grade was declared the grade level winner, collecting the most items in the shortest amount of time.

“It is people like you that enable us to support our soldiers and give them what they need,” Housley told the students as he explained the mission of his organization and that it started because his brother, Evan, who was deployed to Iraq in late 2007, noted that the typical care packages soldiers receive were generic and did not always provide items they need.

HeroBox.org is a nonprofit organization that gives deployed service members the ability to request specific items while providing Americans with a way to directly support the troops. HeroBox.org was launched in 2008.

Major Robert “Josh” Woodruff was the Master of Ceremonies. Teachers Shelby Garner, chairperson of the Rays of Sunshine Service Committee, and Karen Neuner, music teacher and head of the Veterans Day Activity Committee, organized the program.

Following the assembly, the veterans enjoyed a reception in the media center and visits to classrooms.


Photo Source: Fayette County Board of Education
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McIntosh Academic Team on High Q Sunday

The McIntosh Academic Team recently competed on Channel 2's High Q program.  Tune in on Sunday, November 14 at 12:30 to see the Chiefs in action.

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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

SMHS Panthers High 5 Sports Team of the Week

The Starr’s Mill High Panthers football team will appear live on Good Day Atlanta as the High 5 Sports Team of the Week.

The team will appear in three segments during the live broadcast from the school on November 11. Appearances are scheduled for 7:20 a.m., 7:50 a.m. and 8:40 a.m. The school will celebrate with a pep rally before the first live event.

The Panthers were chosen as the Team of the Week by receiving the most votes from an online poll that included four other teams. Starr’s Mill received more than 44,000 votes. The other teams were the Kell Longhorns, Clarke Central Gladiators, Alpharetta Raiders and ELCA Chargers. Voting started last Saturday and ended Tuesday, November 9.

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After School Students Participate in Noel November

(L-R) Fayetteville Intermediate students Alex Yelverton, Porter Sherrit and Whitney Hayes hang Victorian ornaments that students made from discarded pieces of jewelry. 

Christmas is just around the corner and the holiday spirit is filling the air as students in the Fayette County Public Schools After School Program (ASP) get ready for Noel November.

Three ASPs are participating in the annual fundraiser sponsored by the Fayette County Board of Realtors: Robert J. Burch Elementary, Fayetteville Intermediate and Huddleston Elementary.

Each program has donated a tree decorated with ornaments made by students in kindergarten through fifth grade. The trees will be sold at a silent auction on November 13 with proceeds going to benefit The Joseph Sams School, the Breast Cancer Survivors Network, Embracing Military Families, and Promise Place.

The trees were decorated to reflect a specific theme. The one from Robert J. Burch, “It’s a Beary Awesome Christmas,” features teddy bears with scarves knitted by the students.

Huddleston’s “Topping the Charts” tree has spinning top toy ornaments dangling from its branches along with CDs painted to resemble old 45-rpm records. Wrapping the bottom is a poodle skirt decorated with finger-knitted poodle-clipped dogs.

Fayetteville Intermediate went back in time with “A Victorian Christmas” showcasing handmade ornaments from discarded pieces of jewelry along side snowflake doilies and paper dolls. The students conducted research about the Victorian era and learned that in those times people wasted nothing, even old jewelry, which they recycled into ornaments.

“Community service is one of the components of the After School Program philosophy,” says Julia Simpson, the program director. “We know that out-of–school time is as important to children’s growth and development as time spent in the classroom. The after school curriculum is designed to compliment the educational component with a focus on character, health and fitness, and, most importantly, extended learning. This project enabled us to not only learn about other eras, but also was an opportunity to be part of a community effort to help others.”

Photo Source:  Fayette County Board of Education

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Fayette Chamber “Total Resource Campaign” a Success

The Fayette Chamber of Commerce’s first “Total Resource Campaign” has been completed and deemed a great success, according to Chamber president Virginia Gibbs.

Launched in August at a special luncheon where the Chamber’s new logo was unveiled, the TRC’s goal was to bring focus to the Chamber’s new tagline “Where Business and Community Connect.”

“During the ten week Total Resource Campaign, the Fayette Chamber added fifty-eight new members,” said Darrell Cutts, president of Piedmont Fayette Hospital and Campaign Chair, during the TRC’s Victory Celebration luncheon held Thursday, October 28 at Glendalough Manor.

Additionally, the Total Resource Campaign teams sold thirty sponsorships for 2011 for Chamber publications as wide-ranging as the Chamber map, directory and Happenings E-zine. At least forty-four sponsorships were sold for events and programs including the Chamber’s Annual Meeting, Business After Hours, Partners in Education and others. The teams also achieved many in-kind contributions , as well as membership upgrades.

TRC Teams

“The success of this program is a result of the hard-working and enthusiastic Chamber member volunteers,” said Joe Domaleski, Chairman of the Board of the Fayette Chamber.

Four TRC Divisions, headed by Vice Chairs, Irene Edwards, Bank of North Georgia, Jim Fulton, Coldwell-Banker Bullard Realty, Mark Gray, State Farm Insurance and Pam Young, The Southern Conservation Trust, spread out across Fayette County to raise awareness of the Chamber’s extensive work with local businesses, as well as raise funds to help equip the Chamber for its 2011 efforts to continue to expand, improve and enhance the many valuable connections between businesses and the community.

During the high-energy TRC efforts, teams enjoyed a healthy and rigorous competition. Team number thirteen, “Lucky No. 13,” led by Steve McCullough, MacTees, soared to the top with the highest number of new Chamber memberships and other achievements, exceeding their goal by 220%.

Lucky No. 13 team members also included Sandy Sanders, Whitewater Creek Country Club, Pam Howland, Send Out Cards, and Marie Liang Schlosser, The Guide. Ms. Schlosser was also the Top Individual Producer of the TRC Campaign.

Team One, “The Exponentials,” lead by Robin North of diWebsite Management, exceeded their goal by 155%, bringing in the first new membership on kick-off day, among other achievements.

Additional Top Producing Teams included The Better Board Team, Coweta-Fayette EMC andPiedmont Fayette Hospital.

The other Top Overall Producers included Boni Blackstone, 92.5 The Bear; Peggy Thomas, Club Z! In-Home Tutoring Services; Elaine Dingler, Fayette County Development Authority; Mary Ann Bell and Amy Lott, Coweta-Fayette EMC; Alice Muetzel and Vicki Kaiser, Piedmont Fayette Hospital; Dianne Burnsed, Georgia Power; Michael Lear, The Southern Federal Credit Union; Dan Vano, Heritage Bank; Vicki Turner, Turner Designs Concepts; and Marilyn Walker, Senior Helpers.

“The most compelling thing about the TRC effort for me was watching the Chamber volunteers and staff demonstrate ’Where Business and Community Connect’ in such personal ways,” said Gibbs. “We saw the dedication of so many business professionals connecting with each other, sharing the depth of ways the Chamber brings the business community together and makes a difference. In such a short period of time, we added a significant number of new, excited members and wonderful volunteers. In spite of the difficult economy, it is very gratifying to see the chamber grow and add to our capacity to provide needed tools and resources for our community.”

The Fayette Chamber plans a 2011 Total Resource Campaign. In the meantime, any business is welcome to contact the Chamber at any time regarding membership and many other opportunities by calling 770-461-9983 or going to www. FayetteChamber.org.

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Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Bullying, Texting, School Expulsion on Agenda for Community Awareness Forum on November 11

The first of two Juvenile Justice/Community Awareness Forums scheduled for this school year will be held Thursday, November 11 at Sandy Creek High from 6:30-8:30 p.m. The forum is being co-sponsored by the Fayette County Public School System and the NAACP.

The theme for the forum is “What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You.” Discussion topics include school expulsion, bullying and cyber bullying, and texting while driving. All eighth grade and high school students and their parents are encouraged to attend to receive important information on many hot-button legal issues facing teens. The event is free and open to the public.

A panel of juvenile judges and attorneys, heads of law enforcement, and school officials will lead the discussion. Panelists include Judge Karen Calloway, juvenile court judge; Attorney Jackie Patterson, juvenile law; Judge Deidre Burney Butler, juvenile court judge; Tyrone Police Chief Brandon Perkins; Fayette County Sheriff Wayne Hannah; Coordinator of School Safety and Discipline, CW Campbell; School Resource Officer, David McNaughton (Sandy Creek High); and Sandy Creek High School Principal, Roy Rabold.

There will be plenty of time for a question and answer session. Also, the book, “Ignorance Is No Defense,” by J. Tom Morgan, will be available for purchase.

The second Juvenile Justice/Community Awareness Forum will take place in April. Discussion topics, as well as a date, time and location will be announced in the future.

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Schools Set to Honor Veterans on Veterans Day

Veterans and active military personnel from throughout the county will be special guests of Fayette County Public Schools this Veterans Day as they attend assemblies, parades, and other special events recognizing their service and sacrifices for our country.

Students and teachers have been planning and organizing events for weeks. Preparation began with classroom instruction about the significance of Veterans Day and why it is important to remember those who have, and are serving in the United States military.

Combined with their studies, students have been working on songs, skits, short plays and assemblies to which they are inviting veterans from their school communities to attend. Here is a brief rundown of events happening at schools around the county on Veterans Day, November 11:

Braelinn Elementary will host a breakfast from 8:30-9:15 a.m. for veterans and active military personnel with a flyover, weather permitting, from 9:15-9:45 a.m.

Brooks Elementary is serving lunch to veterans from 11 a.m.-noon followed by an assembly featuring the Sandy Creek High School Air Force Junior ROTC Color Guard. The school’s annual Veterans Day Parade will take place 1:15-2 p.m. with music from the Whitewater High School Marching Band.

Cleveland Elementary fourth and fifth grade students will perform a musical titled “Faces of Freedom” at 7 p.m. The program will also feature a kindergarten soloist.

Crabapple Lane Elementary will hold an assembly at 8:30 a.m. to honor veterans in its school community. Immediately following the assembly, the students will line the halls for the Veterans Walk. The walk was one of the most touching moments from last year’s celebration, according to Principal Doe Evans. “One of our grandfathers, who has difficulty walking, would not ride in a wheelchair, but insisted on walking the entire distance. Our students cheered him on. It brought tears to our eyes,” she says.

Fayette Middle will have its annual Veterans Day program at 9 a.m. in the gymnasium with Principal Sharlene Patterson’s twin sister, USAF Colonel Shirlene Ostrov, as one of the speakers. A reception will follow in the media center.

Huddleston Elementary will begin its annual Veterans Day assembly at 8 a.m. in the school’s gymnasium.

Peeples Elementary will invite past and present military personnel to join them at 1:45 p.m. for a walk around the school. Students will honor them by lining the hallways, waving flags and singing patriotic songs.

Sara Harp Minter Elementary will invite veterans to join students for a special assembly featuring The Voice of Veterans.

Spring Hill Elementary will have a daylong celebration for veterans beginning with a Patriotic Parade in the school from 9-9:15 a.m. immediately followed by an assembly where each veteran will receive a medal in honor of their service and sacrifice. Students will also perform a Patriotic Musical Salute. The school will host a reception after the assembly and veterans will visit classrooms.

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Monday, November 08, 2010

Students Learn Healthy Eating Habits

Students not only learn about cooking food, but they also get information on healthy eating and nutrition through their Family and Consumer Sciences Connection classes at Whitewater Middle.

Partnering with the school’s lunch program manager, Ruchelle Helton, teacher Laurel Hinze organized a program to teach students about the healthy and nutritional benefits of their school lunches, which are prepared with reduced sodium, fat and sugar. The students also learned skills for making smart menu choices, using portion control and priority decision-making.

The lesson was connected with My Pyramid and the USDA School Lunch Plan. Students were instructed on how to navigate MyPyramid.gov and related USDA websites.

Hinze concluded the lesson with these words for her students, “Eat a school lunch today, thank our lunchroom ladies for all they do for you, and enhance your diet and education of foods by researching MyPyramid.gov.”

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Sunday, November 07, 2010

Students Draw Posters Promoting After School Program

Laura Davis and Anna Dingler accept their $25 Walmart gift certificates from (L) Julia Simpson, after school program director, and Sue Cleek, principal of Brooks Elementary.

Posters created by elementary-age after school students of the Fayette County Public School System helped promote the annual “Lights on After School” day on October 21.

Students created the posters during their After School Program (ASP) classes as part of a countywide poster contest. The contest was one of many activities that were held in support of the national event that calls attention to the importance of afterschool programs and the resources required to keep them operating.

Laura Davis and Anna Dinger of Brooks Elementary collaboratively created this year’s winning poster. Each received a $25 gift card from the Walmart in Peachtree City.

Photo Source:  Fayette County Board of Education

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City of Fayetteville Participating in Mayor’s Christmas Motorcade

The City of Fayetteville will be doing its part to make the holiday season special for residents of the state’s mental health and retardation hospitals.

For 52 years, cities across Georgia have brought the joy of the holiday season to patients at Georgia’s seven regional mental health and retardation hospitals through the Mayors’ Christmas Motorcade.

The program, begun by the Georgia Municipal Association (GMA) in cooperation with Governor Ernest Vandiver, relies on citizen participation in each city to donate gifts for the patients, many of who would not receive gifts or be recognized without the Mayor’s Christmas Motorcade. According to hospital staff, many of the patients at these hospitals have lived there most of their lives and have little, if any, support or contact with friends and family.

Donated items from the City of Fayetteville will be delivered to West Central Georgia Regional Hospital in Columbus, Ga. on December 2, 2010. Civic organizations, businesses, churches, schools, scout troops and individual citizens are encouraged to help with the collection of gifts for the Mayors’ Christmas Motorcade. For more information on how groups can participate, please call Anne Barnard at 770-719-4159.

Based in Atlanta, GMA is a voluntary, non-profit organization that provides legislative advocacy, educational, employee benefit and technical consulting services to its 512 member cities.

Letter from Fayetteville Mayor Ken Steele:

In the state of Georgia there are several thousand citizens living in Georgia’s seven regional mental health and retardation hospitals. Many of these patients have lived in these hospitals most of their lives and have little, if any, contact with or support from friends or family.

Fifty two years ago, in 1958, the Georgia Municipal Association and then Governor Ernest Vandiver created the Mayor’s Christmas Motorcade to help these hospital patients celebrate Christmas by providing each with a present. The staff at the regional hospitals tells us that without the Mayor’s Christmas Motorcade, many patients would go without any type of gift or recognition during the holidays.

Our city has started its gift collection campaign and we are asking for your help. The hospital clients are part of our community, drawn from a region, and we would like to encourage all of you to remember them this holiday season. West Central Georgia Regional Hospital located in Columbus is the hospital that the City of Fayetteville is supporting. If your school, church, business, or civic group would like to partner with the City of Fayetteville in participating in an outstanding holiday community project, please contact Anne Barnard at (770) 719-4159 for further information on how you can get involved.

You will find enclosed a prepared “Christmas Wish List” for the clients. Let's not forget those less fortunate during the holiday season.

Thank you for your support,
Mayor Ken Steele
City of Fayetteville

Friday, November 05, 2010

Teachers Bright Ideas Earn Grant Money from Fayette-Coweta EMC

Two Sandy Creek High teachers got a pleasant surprise from the Fayette-Coweta EMC prize patrol when they learned their Bright Ideas Grant had been accepted. Keelan Seabolt received $1,494 to implement a project to teach students about the construction of electronics that save energy. Matthew Turner received $1,500 to teach his automotive technology students the technique of airbrushing. The class will paint mailboxes and car tags that will be sold as fundraisers for Sandy Creek’s Skills USA chapter.


Fayette’s teachers have many bright ideas for their classrooms, and thanks to the Bright Ideas Grant program sponsored by the Fayette-Coweta EMC, they have the funding to make their ideas a reality.

A total of 11 teachers in the Fayette County Public School System collectively received $12,635 for grant proposals they submitted for the 2010 Bright Ideas Grant program. Grant awardees ran the gamut of educational disciplines including automotive technology, physical science, orchestra, foreign language, biology, gifted education, physics, social studies, and special needs.
Here are the school system’s 2010 winners:

Keelan Seabolt, Sandy Creek High, Physics
Matthew Turner, Sandy Creek High, Automotive Technology
Darilyn Esterline, Whitewater High and Sara Harp Minter Elementary, Orchestra
Kim Newman, Whitewater High, Foreign Language
Kelly Rock, Starr’s Mill High, Biology
Barbara Storme, Braelinn Elementary, Social Studies
Dr. Katy Linteris, Cleveland Elementary, Gifted Education
Whitney Noel, McIntosh High, Special Needs
Michael Fairbanks, Crabapple Lane Elementary, Physics
Guy Serapion, Huddleston Elementary, Physical Science
Sally Raymond, Peeples Elementary, Special Needs

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Fayetteville Police arrest parolee for rape and incest

The Fayetteville Police arrested David Travis Dennis, 25, a recent parolee, November 4 and are charging him with rape and incest. The incident was reported on July 1, 2010 when a female relative of Dennis went to Piedmont-Fayette Hospital to report she had been raped.

Hospital staff called 911 to report the incident and police responded to the hospital. A Fayetteville Detective was summoned and interviewed the female who identified Dennis as the suspect. The female stated the incident occurred after a party for Dennis who had just been released from prison on July 1, 2010.

The investigation was then turned over to Detective Lieutenant Debbie Chambers and evidence obtained from the victim was sent to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (G.B.I.) for processing. On November 3, 2010, Detective Chambers received information from the G.B.I. that the DNA obtained from evidence and the suspect’s DNA were a match.

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Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Holiday Village Promotes Fayette Merchants

Fayette merchants and restaurants have a wonderful opportunity to promote their business during prime holiday shopping season with the Fayette Chamber’s Holiday Village. The virtual shopping village is now online through December 31 and will allow businesses to post coupons and menus, advertise new products, announce holiday events and sales and more.

The Holiday Village is part of the Chamber’s Find it in Fayette!(R) Campaign to encourage consumers to buy local. Offering this promotional opportunity gives merchants and restaurants a low-cost way to attract the attention of holiday shoppers through this one-stop-shopping website. The Holiday Village is core to the Chamber’s mission of providing tools and resources to help local businesses succeed.

The Village is open to non-Chamber member as well as members; however, members can take advantage of a reduced rate. Interested businesses may sign up online at www.FayetteChamber.org or call the Chamber at 770.461.9983.

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Monday, November 01, 2010

Local Legislator Honored for Keeping Teen Drivers Safe

Virginia Gibbs, Fayette Chamber President; Representative Matt Ramsey; Mark Gray, State Farm Insurance

State Representative Matt Ramsey of Peachtree City has taken action to keep teen drivers safe and is receiving the Graduated Driver Licensing Champion Award, presented by State Farm®. This award is given in recognition of Ramsey’s efforts to pass legislation that would ban the usage of cell phones by teen drivers last year. This bill plugged one of the major gaps in Georgia’s Graduated Drivers License (or GDL) laws.

“Rep. Ramsey has taken steps to help reduce the number of teen crashes and ultimately save lives here in Georgia“, said State Farm Agent Mark Gray of Peachtree City.

The award was presented to Rep. Ramsey by Mr. Gray at the Fayette County Chamber of Commerce Business after Hours on Tuesday, October 19th at the Dogwood Forest Assisted Living Community on Highway 54 in Fayetteville.

Motor vehicle crashes are the #1 killer of American teens. In Georgia in 2008, 233 young people were involved in fatal car crashes. Graduated driver licensing (GDL) laws have been proven to help prevent these tragedies. GDL is a system designed to introduce driving privileges in phases; this approach keeps new teen drivers out of high-risk situations, protecting them and others on the road while they gain driving experience. According to the National Safety Council, states with strong GDL laws have as much as a 40% reduction in crashes involving teen drivers.

State Farm has awarded legislators from four states with the 2010 Graduated Driver Licensing Champion Award. The honorees were instrumental in helping to enact stronger teen driving safety laws in their states. The winners include Senator Quinton Ross and Representative Mac Gipson of Alabama, Senator Jack Murphy and Representative Matt Ramsey of Georgia, Representative Hollis Downs of Louisiana, and Senator Tracey Eide of Washington.

Photo Source:  Fayette County Chamber of Commerce

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