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5th annual Bridge for the Band a success

HOUSTON • The Immaculate Heart Catholic Church in Houston hosted the annual Bridge for the Band on Tuesday, Jan. 21.

The event is used as a way to raise money for the Houston High School band, while also serving as a way for the ladies to get together and play the game they love.

They have lunch and an auction. This year, they were also entertained during lunch by the Houston High School Jazz Band.

The event does not just draw the Houston crowd, however. This year there was representation from Columbus and Calhoun City according to Diane Clark, the coordinator of the event.

According to Houston’s Band Director Eric Malone, the event raised $900 this year. He said that the money will go towards future needs for the band.

“This is the 5th year that these ladies have organized this Bride for the Band fundraising event,” he said. “They simply do it to give back and because so many of them have either been in band or have family members that have been through the band, they know how much band can shape and change a person’s life. They raised $900 yesterday in a matter of four hours and have raised right at $4,400 in the last five years.”

The band and Malone are extremely grateful for the money being raised on their behalf.

“That is an amazing accomplishment that we could not be more grateful for,” he said. “It is incredibly gracious of them and humbling to know that people actually recognize our band for the hard work they put in week in and week out. I have gone to talk, watch and hang out with the ladies every year since they have started doing this event.”

Playing at the event was a good experience for the band as well. It allowed them to meet the ladies who have been some of their biggest supporters.

“It was amazing to see them dancing and enjoying the music from the students,” Said malone. “The students stayed around for about an hour afterward cleaning up and talking to the ladies and learning how to play bridge. It was fantastic to see these two groups bonding when they had never met each other before. It was a great experience for the students and I know they had a great time.”

Houlka graduates newest class of D.A.R.E students

HOULKA • The fifth graders at Houlka took their pledge to “Just say no” on Friday.

The students graduated from the D.A.R.E program, which is a program that serves to teach fifth graders the dangers of drugs and drug use, and teach them ways to avoid them. It also teaches skills that can be used when confronted with these types of situations.

Family members gathered in the gym to watch the kids receive their certificates.

These kids really learned a lot in the program too.

“Resistance, safety and helpful things,” said Ja’kwon Evans, when talking about the things he learned in D.A.R.E.

Deputy Jacob Paden was the instructor of the course this year, and he seemed to have a good relationship with the students. They talked very highly of him.

“He trained us to be respectful to grown ups and don’t disrespect,” said Jordan Foster, another graduate of the program.

Paden also spoke kindly of them too.

“They done real good,” he said. “To be 10-year-old kids, their attention went really well. They really fell right into it, and they enjoyed it. They were proud to see me coming.

This year, Paden decided to do something a little different than in previous years. With the permission of the D.A.R.E board, he chose four students who stood out in the class. Two of these were winners of an essay contest, and they were Paxton Graves and Hannah Turner. The other two students were star students. They were always respectful and courteous both in the classroom and out. These students were Britney Sparks and Stephanie Hardiman.

“He said we were one of the greatest classes he ever had because we were all so quiet and respectful,” said Darius Stevens. “He taught us to stay away from bad stuff and respect our elders.”

These kids seemed to thoroughly enjoy the class and take some helpful tips away from it.

The full list of kids who participated is:

Jalea Berry, Jalyn Berry, Marquavious Brumby, Yasmin Buchanan, Dylan Coleman, Hannah Collins, Christian Eaton, Jordan Foster, Stephanie Hardiman, Lei’asia Hoskin, Hayden Mcgee, James Moore, Aubree Reynolds, Weston Russell, Master Sitthipraasert and Dakota Stephens. Dakota Stump, Hannah Turner, Tyler Vinson, Robert Winter, Carter Barkley, Tramell Brady, Trinity Buggs, Gabriel Butler, Mack Daniel, Megan Dill, Deacon Duncan, Ja’kwon Evans, Jaylen Fitzpatrick, Paxton Graves and Colin Griggs. Jaleeah Hamilton, Riley Harris, Travis Holmes, Shaaliyah Kimble, Brianna Mcgreger, Britney Sparks, Darrius Stephens and Carlie Winter.

Parkway hosts annual wild game supper

HOUSTON • Parkway Baptist Church hosted its annual wild game supper on Saturday, Jan. 18.

Men from the area gathered together to share some of their favorite dishes along with some fellowship.

According to Pastor Randy Rinehart, the goal of the dinner is to bring men together for food, fellowship and the Word of God.

“Our goal in this is for people to come to know Christ as their personal lord and savior, and to challenge men to be the Godly men that they need to be in their home,” he said.

The speaker at this year’s dinner was Brian Thrasher. He spoke about what it means to be a Godly man, and set an example for others.

There were door prizes, however, this year they did something a little bit different. One of the members of the church, Joe Sellers, is battling stage three colon cancer, and was having a benefit on the same night. They set up a collection jar to raise money for him, as well as auctioning off a few of the door prizes.

“It was great,” said Alan Moore, an attendee of the dinner. “We got to hear the word of God preached, met a lot of folks I have not seen in a while and enjoyed some really good food.”

Chickasaw County to begin debris removal

CHICKASAW • Chickasaw County will soon begin disposing of debris from the October 2019 storms that left damage throughout the area.

The first step in the process will be debris collection. This is where the public’s help is needed. The county asks that all citizens with debris from the storm place it on the right of way. This is the only way that debris can be collected. They also ask that no debris be placed under guide wires or low hanging utility lines as the equipment could get caught in the wires.

There are restrictions on the type of debris that will be collected. Only vegetative debris will be collected. Vegetative debris consists of whole trees, tree stumps, tree branches, tree trunks and other leafy materials. There will not be collection of electronics, appliances, hazardous waste, construction debris or household garbage.

The removal of debris comes in the wake of Chickasaw being added to the disaster declaration for the storms.

The debris will be transported to one of three burn sites that have been approved and will be monitored by the Department of Environmental Quality, throughout the county. According to Chickasaw County EMA Director Linda Griffin, time is of the essence.

“There is a time frame to use the burn sites that are approved by DEQ,” she said.

For more information or to address any questions, contact the Chickasaw County EMA Office at (662) 448-1012.