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Around Town

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November 30, 2017 (Photos - Album1Album2) - The annual Joaquin Christmas Festival was held Saturday, November 18 complete with parade and Santa and Mrs. Claus.

There was a really large turnout as the day was sunny and beautiful if a tad windy at times. There were vendors set up around the square and we certainly hope they had a good day as well. The air was filled with the offerings of the food vendors that was wonderful. The kids had so many free activities and goodie bags that all the parents and grandparents took home tired little ones at the end of the day. A Bounce House as well as a Bounce Obstacle Course as well as games were set up adjacent to the vendor booths and the Santa House. The lights and decorations around the huge Dellinger Christmas Tree were beautiful. Of course, the Santa House was beautifully decorated with fencing, lights and the jolly pair themselves.

A cake walk was held several times during the day to benefit the American Cancer Foundation. There were many, many cakes, pies and cookies donated for the walks and many enjoyed the sweets of local bakers. Many thanks to all who donated goodies.

Entertainment ran all day with local talent singing, the children’s choir from Bethlehem Baptist Church and the professional duo Broken Vessels. That pair did so many beautiful gospel songs, Christmas songs and good time singing as well as announced activities. We were grateful for their efforts.

The artists of Joaquin Schools showed off their talents at the art show in the Senior Citizens Building. Thanks to all who participated.

The parade was especially enjoyable as the band from Joaquin High School showed up and showed out. They were dressed in holiday attire and played beautifully. There were five churches with beautifully decorated floats and everyone had a chance to honor our Grand Marshall Margie Anderson.

There was a huge raffle held as well as an auction to benefit Joaquin Christian Services organized and run by the East Texas Chopper Guys. This motorcycle group also held a bike and car show and also raffled off a trailer. Dennis Leggett ran the auction and called out winning ticket numbers for the raffle. Around $7,500 was raised for this local charity.

There were so many things donated this year by businesses in Joaquin, Logansport, Carthage and Center. The volunteer help was evident everywhere we turned. As is always the case at Joaquin festivities, a good time was had by all.

November 30, 2017 - Shelby County Judge Allison Harbison has been honored by the Texas Judicial Academy for going the extra mile to be prepared to handle her duties as county judge.

Judge Harbison was inducted on November 16 as a Fellow in the Texas Judicial Academy during the 2017 Fall Judicial Education Session.

The Texas Judicial Academy, a partnership between the Texas Tech University School of Law and the Texas Association of Counties, recognizes judges who attain significant judicial education above that required by state law as Fellows each year.

The educational program of the Texas Judicial Academy is overseen by the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals and includes instruction by higher court judges, law school faculty as well as representatives of the Texas Probate College and the National Judicial College.

November 29, 2017 - Shelby County Memorial VFW Post 8904 and the Auxiliary are proud to announce that Abigale Grace Hooper, Senior Joaquin High School finished in second place in the VFW District 19 competition.

She will receive and engraved plaque and a check for $300.00 to be presented at the next districting meeting in January, 2018. Congratulations to Abigale.

Photo: Post Service Officer John Piersol presented Abigale her first place Post 8904 Certificate at the Joaquin Veteran’s Day Program held November 7, 2017

November 28, 2017 - The Pineywoods Board of Realtors made a donation of food which was collected during their recent food drive to the Shelby County Outreach Ministries on November 20, 2017.

Receiving the donation was Sherry Harding, Shelby County Outreach Ministries Executive Director, who expressed her appreciation to the board, "You've done so much and I really appreciate each of you. We are excited. We've had people just flowing through here already... it has just been overwhelming. Just this year there has been so many, we are averaging about 300 food boxes a month."

"You are very welcome. We are glad we can do this for you," said Jodi Fountain, a member of the Pineywoods Board of Realtors. This is the third year for the food drive.

Shelby County Outreach Ministries is located at the corner of Shelbyville Street and MLK Drive in Center.

November 28, 2017 - Santa Claus recently delivered an invitation to Colleen Doggett to serve as Grand Marshal of the 18th annual Santa’s Christmas Parade. The parade, presented by Shelby Savings Bank, will be held on Saturday, December 2, 2017 beginning at 6:00 p.m.

Colleen Doggett was the recipient of the 2017 Distinguished Service Award and was recognized at the annual Shelby County Chamber of Commerce awards banquet for her contributions in and around Shelby County.

Categories for the 2017, ”A Texas Christmas” themed parade will include Individuals, Schools, Businesses, Churches and Civic Organizations. Parade participants are asked to decorate with lights for the nighttime parade and have audible Christmas music playing. There are applicable rules and considerations for entries with horses. Judges will award cash prizes to the top three places in each category, First $100, Second $50 and Third $25 and the Overall Best in Show Float will receive $250 cash prize.

Parade float entry registration is free and completed applications must be returned to the Shelby County Chamber of Commerce office by the entry deadline on Wednesday, November 29, 2017. Applications for the parade, vendor space and entry rules are now available at the Shelby County Chamber of Commerce office located at 100 Courthouse Square, A-101 on the historic downtown Center square or online at www.shelbycountychamber.com.

For more information please contact the Shelby County Chamber of Commerce at (936) 598-3682 or info@shelbycountychamber.com.

November 28, 2017 - The annual County Attorney Toy Drive has begun according to County Attorney Gary Rholes. The Toy Drive needs donations of new, unwrapped toys for boys and girls ages 3 through 12. Rholes explained that his staff works with Shelby County Schools to obtain names of deserving children. The toys are then distributed by his office. “The need is great this year, so we really need help from our generous Shelby County Citizens” Rholes stated.  Anyone needing further information can call the County Attorney’s Office at (936-598-6100).

November 27, 2017 - In this season of giving thanks, I would like, on behalf of the entire City of Joaquin, to extend our most sincere gratitude to all of those who worked so tirelessly to make the recent Joaquin Christmas Festival such a resounding success.

So many citizens, church groups, local businesses, and various other area organizations, particularly the Joaquin Christmas Committee, contributed to making this one of the most successful events in our City’s history. It would impossible to personally thank everyone involved; however, special thanks are due to Cricket Villalobos, Susan and Floyd Blackman, Bro. Robert Ortego, Gayle Samford, Dennis Leggett, Matt Wood, Nolan Sholar, and Billy and Marsha Barnett. Thank you so much, you have shown through your efforts a deep love and devotion for The City of Joaquin, and for that we are truly appreciative. Once again thank you and congratulations on such an outstandingly successful event.

God Bless, Happy Thanksgiving, and Merry Christmas!
Joaquin Mayor Patricia Gray

November 27, 2017 - It seems especially appropriate during this holiday season for Center Garden Club to pay homage to a relatively small pecan tree, a natural wonder, which stands in the center of town on the west lawn of the historic Shelby County Courthouse. Each November our pecan tree, like others across the South, showers our courthouse grounds with a generous crop of pecans, versatile nuts that have become a staple of holiday fare: cookies, cakes, pies, candies, soups and salads, cheese balls, and a multitude of other culinary delights. 

Pecan history says that certain American Indian tribes were the first to be aware of the pecan. In the late 1700’s President George Washington planted pecan trees at Mount Vernon. The trees were a gift from Thomas Jefferson, credited with making the pecan tree popular in the South. The pecan was made the official state tree of Texas by an act of the Thirty-sixth Legislature in regular session, 1919.

Our courthouse pecan tree over the past thirty-plus years has served us well spreading its green canopy in the summer and providing appetizing and nutritious nuts in the late fall for man and wildlife alike to enjoy. If you have not yet noticed this “One Wonder,” the Center Garden Club believes that when you do, you will be in for a treat both figuratively and literally.

Center Garden Club meets on the second Wednesday of each month, September through May. The public is welcomed. For more information, please contact Carolyn Bounds at 598-3414.

Administrative Assistant, Valerie Warren; program Chairman Linda Anderson; and Executive Director Denise Merriman shown with toys collected by members of the Golden Harvest Ministries Club for the Advocacy Center.

November 25, 2017 - Golden Harvest Ministries Club 1st Vice President Linda Anderson opened the November 20, 2017 Golden Harvest Ministries Club meeting with a Bible verse of Thanksgiving and recognized guests and Linda Bordelon who was back after Pine Grove rehab, and who had decorated the tables with colorful fall leaves and pumpkins to welcome the Thanksgiving season.

Harold Hanson led members with songs of thanksgiving, and members sang “Happy Birthday” to Dot Bain, Ann Hooper, and Barbara Mathis. Anniversary greetings went to Barbara and David Mathis and Sylvia Jackson.

Denise Merriman, Executive Director of Shelby County Children’s Advocacy Center, gave updated for the past year. Their two-fold purpose is to provide a non-threatening environment for the investigation of child abuse and to provide support services for the victims of abuse and non-offending family members.

The 2018 officers were elected: President, Helen Collard; 1st Vice President, Linda Anderson; 2nd Vice President, Blanche Haley; Secretary, Ellen Manning; Treasurer, Joe Anderson. The Reporter and Historian will be appointed by the President.

Joe Anderson gave the financial report, and Ellen Manning read the October minutes. Ann Forbes discussed those on the Prayer Report.

Members were asked to bring canned goods to the December meeting for the Christmas project. Meetings are the 3rd Monday of each month in the Fellowship Hall of First Baptist Church in Center, Texas at 11:30 am. Visitors are welcome to enjoy the luncheon, program, and fellowship.

November 23, 2017 - Shelby County Today is excited to announce the office will be changing locations in the near future from 229 San Augustine Street to 202 Field Street in Center.

It will be located downstairs in the two-story white house, which once belonged to Grover Hicks, at the corner of San Augustine Street and Field Street. An article provided by Jerry Pinkston revealed the house was built in 1839 by Major Truitt in the Timpson area near Tenaha Creek. It was moved in 1880 to its current location by oxen, and the process took two years to complete.

The move date of the office will be in December, with the exact day being announced as it gets closer, as well as more information about the history of the house.

Shelby County Today is thankful for the support of all of its advertisers and viewers over the years and looks forward to this move being a positive change for its future. Thank you to Wayne and Lisa Christian who have been gracious landlords for the office which SCT has been located in since 2010. Thank you to Yondi Watson, Yanci Hendricks, and Betsy McDonald for the opportunity for the SCT team to become stewards of this historic two-story house.

Happy Thanksgiving from J.J. Ford and Scott Flowers.