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Around Town

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Pictured are Larry and Stacy O'Rear (in the Polaris), Matthew Mettauer (left), representing the Center Athletic Boosters and John Snider (right), Vice Chairman of Shelby Savings Bank.

November 16, 2017 - The Center Athletic Booster Club announces the winner of the raffle for the 2017 Polaris Ranger - congratulations to Stacy O'Rear!

On behalf of the Center Athletic Booster Club we would like to say "thank you" to everyone who purchased a ticket and to Shelby Savings Bank for sponsoring this year's raffle.

Pictured (from left): (SCCAC) Jade Miller, Valerie Warren, Marlene Hernandez, Denise Merriman, Sarah Shires, (Gibsons) Lenny Dupuis, Bobby Head, and Denise Mathews

November 14, 2017 - Gibsons is honored to announce the success of the 2017 Truck Pull in support of the Shelby County Children’s Advocacy Center.

With the help of community teams (business and individuals), local donations and Gibsons match, they were able to raise a total of $10,530.00
At Gibsons, we believe in giving back and are proud to support SCCAC an organizations that is improving our communities awareness of child abuse as well as helping the emotional and physical healing of child abuse victims in our community.
Gibsons would like to express their appreciation to all the team members along with the businesses that made this 2017 Truck Pull a huge success.  We hope to make 2018’s Truck Pull even bigger and better!

November 14, 2017 - Schools around the county are collecting canned food items during the month of November to help feed families during the upcoming holidays. Below is a list of canned food drives which has been submitted to Shelby County Today.

  • Excelsior Jr. BETA club is asking for canned food donations to be dropped off at students homeroom class from November 6th through 15th.
  • Joaquin Jr. BETA and HS BETA clubs are collecting canned foods from November 1st through 17th.
  • Shelbyville JCC are accepting canned food donations at any Shelbyville ISD campus from November 6th through 15th.
  • Tenaha BETA club asks for canned food items to be dropped off at the High School office from November 6th through 15th.

November 14, 2017 - The Shelbyville Lions Club graciously thanks all those who sponsored, participated and visited during our 6th Annual Happenings at Shelbyville Hill Festival this past October 21, 2017.  Without community support the festival is not possible.  

We especially want to thank our following sponsors: Farmers State Bank, Dazzle Me Pink, JML Management, K&L Contractors, Gibson Energy, Raymond Construction, Shelby County Today, Shelby Savings Bank, Covington Lumber and Construction, Trails End Grocery and RV Park, Gary and Greg McDonald, Chicken Express, Center Tire, Joey Lawson Ice, Morrison Insurance, Bounds Insurance, Mettauer Insurance, Mrs. Peggy Buddin and Ace True Value.

The Shelbyville Lions Club is a 501(c)(4) non-profit organization and looks forward to another successful year in 2018.  We hope everyone will join us in supporting our community!

November 14, 2017 - Center Garden Club President Carole Ann Chance, District III Director Kathi Sivess, District III Recording Secretary Linda Bordelon, Center Garden Club Treasurer Cherry Jones, and Mike Bordelon attended the District III Texas Garden Clubs Fall Convention November 9, 2017 at the Tyler Rose Center in Tyler, Texas.

119 East Texas Garden Club members learned about projects and activities from the three zone directors, had the opportunity to shop for plants and other gardening items, and enjoyed a slide program “Out of Africa” presented by Greg Grant, horticulturist, author, and Smith County Extension Agent. 

Center Garden Club Members Colleen Doggett and Mike Bordelon received District III Life Membership Awards.

November 13, 2017 - Approxmiately 150 Junior Chamber of Commerce and Young Ambassador students attended the Annual JCC Fall Conference on November 9th and the Windham Civic Center. Allison Sanford was this year’s Chairman. 

This year’s theme was Shelby County: Strong Roots, New Leaves. Mr. Bill O’Neal, Texas State Historian, gave the students a very interesting and enlightening history lesson on Shelby County. He stressed that you cannot know who you are nor where you are going until you know who you are, and your heritage. 

Emily Shoop, a 2012 Center High School graduate student who attended Texas A&M, worked in Houston and has recently returned home to live and work also spoke to the students. She stressed the importance of school and community involvement. She also spoke about how Shelby County supported her through her life, and now she is looking forward to giving back.

Students from the Marleta Chadwick Financial Advisors School of Business at SFA led two sessions: Time Management, Organization and Goal Setting; and Budgeting. These sessions were very hands on and interactive, and well received by the JCC group.

State Representative, Chris Paddie was the Keynote Speaker. He touched on many topics including: how the Texas Government process works, the importance of school and community involvement, the importance of finding your passion(s) and taking leadership roles, the importance of education at all levels, and more. 

The Shelby County Chamber of Commerce would like to thank the special speakers who made the Conference a success. The Chamber would also like to thank the following sponsors for their support:
Gold Sponsor, Cobb-Vantress- Timberlake Farm; Silver Sponsor, JTK Management, Inc; Friends of the Junior Chamber of Commerce: Don Wheeler, Attorney, Ultra, Inc., Shelby County Cruisers, General Shelters of Texas, Nacogdoches Dental, Center Glass, Thomas R. McLeroy, Jr., Mathews Real Estate and Automotive Collision Repair Specialist. Thank you to Rose Specter and her staff at Endless Possibilities for providing the delicious lunch. Also, thank you to all the area school sponsors for their time and commitment to these students and the JCC/YA program.

November 10, 2017 - Members and guests of the William Carroll Crawford Chapter of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas and the Gateway to Texas Chapter of the Sons of the Republic of Texas met last weekend around the Austin Heritage Oak tree on the Historic Courthouse Square to honor Stephen F. Austin. Stephen Fuller Austin was one of the most important people in the development of Texas. By most authorities he is considered to be the founder of the Anglo-American Texas. In fact, General Sam Houston called him the “Father of Texas.” He was one of the most successful impresarios given the right to place settlers in the new area called “Texas.” Born in Austinville, Virginia on November 3, 1793, he was placed in charge of the Texas project begun by his father, Moses Austin, after Moses’ death in 1820. Stephen died on December 27, 1836, only a few months after the Battle of San Jacinto, at the age of forty-three. At the time of his death he was living near the town of Columbia at the home of Judge George McKinstry. Austin never married, never held elective office, so he is not as well known as other heroes of the early Texas Republic, but hero he was, because he and his father Moses had the vision to bring settlers in to create homes and communities, to help create Texas.

The live oak tree, growing between the bandstand and the old clerk’s building on the courthouse square, is part of a project begun several years ago by Houston businessman Bill F. Price, who had a lifelong interest in Stephen F. Austin. When he discovered the George McKinstry home had been located and was for sale, Price and his wife Janie purchased the property. The home where Stephen F. Austin had lived was now a junkyard, but with much effort the property was cleared and made into a park where an annual celebration of  Austin’s birthday is held on November 3. At the site of the old McKinstry house is a giant live oak tree that has been standing since before the days of the Texas Republic. Acorns were gathered from that tree and have been propagated into trees that were made available for planting. These trees were certified by the Texas Forestry Association as disease free and that they were from the tree at the McKinstry location. The goal of the project was to plant one of the trees in the county seat of each county in the State of Texas.

On March 2, 2004 (Texas Independence Day) the Gateway to Texas Chapter of the Sons of the Republic of Texas, assisted by the William Carroll Crawford Chapter of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas, fourth grade students from Shelby County schools and other dignitaries, a program was held at the Historic Courthouse dedicating the oak seedling. The group, led by SRT President Mike Wood, DRT President Fay Eddins, Judge Dock Watson and Texas Forest Service District Forester Chris Sawyer then planted the young tree, a lasting tribute to the Father of Texas.

November 9, 2017 - Since 1922, the Buddy Poppy has been an integral part of the VFW community. As VFW’s official memorial flower, the Poppy represents the blood shed by American service members and it reiterates that the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Auxiliary will never forget their sacrifices.

Shelby County Memorial VFW Post 8904 and the Auxiliary will be distributing Buddy Poppies on Veterans Day, this Saturday, November 11th at Walmart on Hurst Street from 9 am to 3 pm. Donations go to meet unexpected needs of Shelby County Veterans. Be sure to get yours.

Larry Hume of VFW Post 8904 poses with members of the Center Garden Club in front of the Blue Star Memorial at the Community House in Center.

November 9, 2017 - Larry Hume of VFW Post 8904 spoke to the members of Center Garden Club on Wednesday, November 8, 2017 in advance of Veteran’s Day observance on Saturday, October 10, 2017. Center Garden Club observes Veteran’s Day each year in front of the Blue Star Memorial placed by the club in front of the Center Garden Club at the Community Center on Nacogdoches Street.

Jheri-Lynn McSwain, Shelby County Extension Agent, explains how the Garden Club donation was spent to purchase soil, mulch, and flowering plants placed around the 1885 Historic Courthouse. The work was done by members of Shelby County 4-H members, Mrs. McSwain, and Mark Carpenter of The Lily Farm, who also provided plantsMr. Hume informed the group that 100 years ago, the United States was involved in World War I which officially ended on November 11, 2017. He noted the following Center, Texas men who died in this conflict: Norfleet Armstrong, October 28, 1918; Clyde Chance, October 12, 1918; Norman Crocker, January 24, 2017; Louis Franklin, July 26, 1918; Irving Hunter, October 10, 1918; Fred Lindsey, November 2, 1918; Robert Ramsey, September 14, 1918; Robert Ramsey, September 14, 1918; Alexander Ramsey, November 2, 1918; John Stanton, August 4, 1917; Wilburn Taylor, November 28, 2017; John Yeary, October 8, 1918; and George M. Yates, March 19, 1919 – died after the war of disease, in France – still a casualty of the war.

The Blue Star Memorial Program honors all men and women that serve in the United States Armed Services. This program began with the planting of 8,000 Dogwood trees by the New Jersey Council of Garden Clubs in 1944 as a living memorial to veterans of World War II. What we see today is a program that has expanded to include all men and women who had served, were serving, or would serve in the armed services of the United States. Memorial Markers and By-Way markers were added to the Highway Markers, to be used at locations such as National cemeteries, parks, veteran's facilities and gardens.

Pam Sykes informs Center Garden Club members of the types of trees grown in Texas, their history, and other uses. This part of the meeting occurred after the speech by Larry Hume outside the Community House.

Center Garden Club meeting, submitted by Colleen Doggett, Center Garden Club

November 8, 2017 - Mitch and Shannon Menefee traveled to the Grand Canyon on Wednesday, October 25, 2017 and began a journey of a lifetime - to hike into the depths of the Grand Canyon and back up.

Shannon Menefee said, "There are no words to explain how beautiful and awesome it is. That became very real for us as we hiked down into the canyon."

Ooh Aah Point

Part of the steep trail was "switchbacks"The Menefees began their descent on Thursday, October 26th at 6:06am and the temperature at the rim was 27 degrees. It was still dark. They arrived at 'Ooh Aah Point' (.9 miles down) in time for sunrise which was captured in a picture of them sitting on a rock.

Menefees' explained, "As we stepped down over and over again we reached our halfway point called Skeleton Point. We met a ranger who told us to ask at Phantom Ranch (at the very bottom) if they had any cancellations so we could spend the night. It usually takes 14 months in advance to get a reservation -- if you're lucky! We finally made it down to the ranch at 11:30am and it was 85 degrees!"

Phantom Ranch Canteen"We were sooo tired! Our legs were worn out. We bought some lemonade and tentatively asked about lodging. The man told us that someone had canceled only a few minutes before -- so there was room for us in the dorms."

"We were so happy and knew it was an answer to prayers! God blessed us with a place to sleep, a steak dinner, and a breakfast the next morning. We were so glad to have time to rest and recuperate before starting on the trail up."

They traveled down the South Kaibab trail (7+ miles to the Ranch) and hiked out on the Bright Angel trail (9.5 miles up). The trail down was shorter but steeper and mainly in the sun. The trail out was longer, less steep, in the shade, and had more rest stops with water and restrooms.

Colorado River on the way downAfter their semi-restful night at the ranch, the Menefees ate breakfast at 5am and started hiking at 5:45 and 50 degrees; still dark. They wore lights on their heads to see where they were going while hiking the trail that hugged the Colorado River. Soon they parted from the river but stayed close to streams until Indian Gardens at the halfway point (4.5 miles).

They had backpacks filled with water, snacks, and other essentials. They stopped at 4.5 miles, 3 miles, and 1.5 miles on the way up. They drank plenty of water and ate peanut butter and protein bars.

Supplies the Menefees carried in their backpacks

The Menefees arrived at the top around 12:30pm. Shannon said, "That was an almost 5,000ft gain in elevation in a little under 6 hours! We were so blessed to be able to go and see God's awesome handiwork! We are still sore, but we are feeling so accomplished and we will never forget this trip! Thanks to all of you who prayed for us. They were definitely answered."

Smoky CanyonWalking up the green in the middle is where the Menefees started up.They made it!