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Around Town

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December 29, 2020 - (Album) - First United Methodist Church of Center members and local residents gathered on the Center square to enjoy and participate in a candlelight gathering and Christmas Carols Thursday, December 24, 2020.

The Christmas Eve candlelight service was led by Pastor Malcolm Monroe and Chris Watlington from the bandstand on the east side of the square along San Augustine Street.

Refreshments were provided and as the singing began, Pastor Monroe gave an opening prayer.

The caroling continued, and included: "Joy to the World," "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing," "O' Little Town of Bethlethem," "Away in a Manger," O' Come All Ye Faithful," "The First Noel." Candles were lit and the event came to a final conclusion with the singing of "Silent Night, Holy Night."

December 23, 2020 - Christopher Luna was among the students who received degrees during the 2020 Fall semester at Sam Houston State University. Luna, a 2016 Graduate of Center High School, received a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice.

December 22, 2020 - Shelby County Outreach Ministries will be closing at 12 noon on Wednesday, December 23, 2020, and will be closed on the following Thursday and Friday in observance of Christmas. We will distribute emergency food boxes on Wednesday until we close. Have a blessed and Merry Christmas!

December 18, 2020 - Mathews Realty wishes everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year with hopes 2021 will bring blessings to all. We are grateful for our clients and friends and look forward to seeing you in 2021.

Mathews Realty has been representing buyers and sellers throughout the Shelby County area for many years. Agents Scott Foster and Jane Blount are both Shelby County natives. They have a knowledge and understanding of East Texas. They specialize in commercial, residential and poultry farms.

Mathews Realty is located at 616 Tenaha Street in Center, Texas.

December 17, 2020 - Past District Governor Roger Doyle was presented with a Lions Club International President's Certificate of Appreciation for serving as the 2019-2020 District Champion for the North American Membership Initiative. There were nine districts from the U.S. and Canada involved in the NAMI pilot program. District 2-S1, of which Center Noon Lions Club is a member, led the program in membership growth and retention.

Presenting the award is Immediate Past District Governor Chris Gunstream of the Carthage Noon Lions Club.

December 16, 2020 - The Center Noon Lions Club has recently donated a total of $8,000 to the Shelby Outreach Ministries.  Besides the recent storm damage to their building, there is an increased need for food and services for the local folks they serve. 

Executive Director Sherry Harding was present at the club meeting to accept one of our checks. 

December 16, 2020 - As Sheriff Willis Blackwell's time in office draws near, family, friends and employees gathered at the Shelby County Sheriff's Department to celebrate his time in law enforcement on December 16, 2020.

Sheriff Blackwell's wife Ann opened with a few words and expressed enthusiasm about the coming change.

"Thank you for supporting him the last eight years, because it hasn't all been roses for sure, it's been some pretty tough times," said Ann Blackwell. "Y'all have all stuck with him, and you just don't know how much that means to us."

She thanksed everyone for being supportive of Sheriff Blackwell and turned to Chief Deputy Kevin Windham to share his thoughts.

"On behalf of the Shelby County Sheriff's Department, not only the Sheriff's Department, but also as a citizen of the county we would like to thank you for what is it? 50 years? 50 years of service that he's taken out of his life to serve other people," said Windham. "That says a lot, because most of us I mean it's hard when you're always in the public's eye."

For Blackwell to put in 50 years of service in law enforcement Windham commended him and stated, "It's like they say, 'once a King, always a King,' once a Sheriff, always a Sheriff."

Sheriff Blackwell was then presented with a Henry Golden Boy rifle on which was imprinted his Sheriff's badge and it read, "Sheriff Blackwell Shelby County."

Sheriff Blackwell thanked everyone and said, "I appreciate everybody being here for the last eight years, it's been great. You know there've been some low times and lots of high times, but I appreciate it. I don't plan not to come by and see everybody, visit everybody. Thank you very much."

December 16, 2020 - It's time for a change and a little Christmas fun with Christmas just over a week away!

Did you know Friday is the national day for 'Answer the Telephone Like Buddy the Elf!' According to National Today, on December 18, wear something green, pick up the phone, and celebrate 'Answer The Telephone Like Buddy The Elf Day!' There have been dozens of excellent Christmas movies released through the years, but perhaps none as lovable as Will Ferrell’s Elf. So, this December 18th repeat after us: “Buddy the Elf, what’s your favorite color?” Don't believe? Check it out here.

National Today also lists Friday as 'Bake Cookies Day' and 'National Ugly Sweater Day!'

December 19th includes 'Look for an Evergreen Day' and 'National Hard Candy Day.' Saturday is also 'National Wreaths Across America Day' which has a simple mission to "Remember fallen U.S. Veterans; honor those who serve; and teach your children the value of freedom." This important day is an annual event that takes place every third Saturday in December at Arlington National Cemetery as well as other cemeteries in the U.S., at sea, and abroad.

December 20th is 'Go Caroling Day' and 'National Sangria Day!' For the shy carolor, Sangria Day may be a great match.

December 21 is 'Look on the Bright Side Day!' The year 2020 with all the doom and gloom definitely needs December 21st as there is much to appreciate. For the vertically challenged female, this Monday is your day - 'National Short Girl Appreciation Day!' Be sure to check it out as the advantages listed go along with 'Look on the Bright Side Day.'

December 22nd is perfect for those that participated in Friday's 'Bake Cookies Day!' Congratulations, you are ready for Tuesday's 'National Cookie Exchange Day' which can be celebrated with family and friends who share the love of baking fresh cookies. Yum!

For the short of stature who felt neglected on 'National Short Girl Appreciation Day' then December 22nd is your day. Great things come in small packages and is celebrated all together on 'National Short Person Day!'

December 24th is 'National Christmas Movie Marathon Day.' Be sure to have Will Ferrell's Elf in the movie lineup after all it inspired 'Answer The Telephone Like Buddy The Elf Day!'

Have fun and a Merry Christmas!

December 15, 2020 - Today is the deadline for the Letter From Santa fundraiser held by Shelby County Outreach Ministries! If you would like your child to receive a letter from Santa this year, be sure to drop off your order forms and money at the Shelby County Outreach Ministries office located at 930 Shelbyville Street. Forms need to be turned in by 2pm. For $10, your child will receive a letter from Santa and a small ornament to hang on the Christmas tree. For more information, please give us a call at 936-598-4990. Thank you and have a very Merry Christmas.

December 11, 2020 - Shelby County Outreach Ministries is having our annual “Letters from Santa” Christmas fundraiser. Each letter costs $10 and comes with a personal letter to your child along with an ornament from Santa, himself! All order forms and money must be turned in to the Shelby County Outreach Ministries office by Tuesday, December 15th. Remember, it is $10 per child. Thank you and we hope you all have a very Merry Christmas! For more information, please give us a call at 598-4990.

December 15, 2020 - Mrs. Angie Gillis’s fourth and fifth grade classes at Excelsior School made cards for all the residents at Pine Grove Nursing Center.

Many smiles were on their faces as they received their cards.