Highest Temperature: 80 degrees, 1974
Lowest Temperature: 10 degrees, 1985
Greatest One-Day Precipitation: 2.55 inches, 2000
Greatest One-Day Snow: 1.0 inch, 1921
Yesterday’s High Temperature was 58 degrees.
Bladenboro board cuts McLean Park concession stand construction costs
The Bladenboro Board of Commissioners voted Friday to cut about $9,200 in construction costs for the concession stand to be built at Clarence McLean Park.
During a pre-construction meeting with Steve Britt of K&S Builders, the board opted not to use quarry tile, change the counter door to baked enamel, not install electric hand dryers, change framed wall to 8-inch masonry, not use FRP wall sheetrock and brick siding, and change shingles to three tab. READ MORE
Elizabethtown Police Crime Report: Dec. 29-Jan. 4
The following arrests were filed by the Elizabethtown Police Department from Monday, Dec. 29 through Sunday, Jan. 4. The people listed have not been convicted of the charges and are presumed innocent. Failure to appear charges are not listed. READ MORE
SBI to reopen 1976 Bladen County Murder Case
The State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) announced Monday that an investigation continues of the reopened 1976 Josephine and Aileen Davis murders in Bladen County and will not close “until all viable leads have been exhausted.”
The SBI reopened the case in February, 2013 at the request of District Attorney Jon David when evidence used to convict Joseph Sledge for the homicides was unanimously determined by the North Carolina Innocence Commission to be questionable and warranted a judicial review. READ MORE
BCC President responds to Obama tuition plan
Bladen Community College President Dr. William Findt agrees with the idea proposed by President Barack Obama that students have two years of education beyond high school. Findt says it is now
virtually a requirement that those entering the workforce have a credential indicating they have the skills necessary for today’s workforce.
The plan proposed in Obama’s State of the Union address would enable a student to complete a degree or other educational credential at one of the nation’s community colleges without paying any tuition provided the student maintains a 2.5 grade point average and completes the program within three years. Findt points out that the proposal would have less impact on Bladen Community College than it might at many other community colleges because 78 percent of the college’s students receive Pell grant tuition assistance. In addition, tuition in North Carolina’s community colleges is among the lowest in the nation. He points out that though the proposal may initially lead to increased enrollment at many of the nation’s community colleges, it may not achieve a stated goal of increasing the overall education level of the American workforce. READ MORE
Dunn Promoted to Tampa
The Beasley Broadcast group recently entered into an asset exchange with CBS radio to enter the Tampa-St.Petersburg, Florida market (18th largest radio market). The deal closed in October, 2014. Dunn joined the Beasley Broadcast group in 1991. READ MORE
Elizabethtown Middle School DAR Winner
Mary Katelyn Lennon, a 5th grader at Elizabethtown Middle School, has been selected to compete at the district level for her DAR essay.
Her essay was chosen to represent the Battle of Elizabethtown Chapter of the National Society of Daughters of the American Revolution.
The students were required to write a historical fiction essay portraying the experience of a child immigrating to America and arriving at Ellis Island. Congratulations, Mary!
NCDA&CS to host fifth annual workshop for farmers market managers Feb. 20
RALEIGH – The N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services will host its fifth annual workshop for managers of local farmers markets Friday, Feb. 20, from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Greensboro.
The workshop will be held at the Guilford County Cooperative Extension Office, 3309 Burlington Road in Greensboro. The event includes sessions on legal protections, liability, grant funding and event planning. Networking opportunities also will be available throughout the day. READ MORE
“Faithful Families Eating Smart and Moving More”
and your family can Eat Smart and Move More?
We are currently looking for a church in Bladen County that would be willing to host our “Faithful Families Eating Smart and Moving More” classes that would be available for you, your church members, and citizens of Bladen County to join! READ MORE
Thoughts While Shaving
And, we are suppose to receive reval notices this week…Values will be used for the next 8 years to determine our property tax bills… READ MORE
Week in Review: Jan. 19-25
In 1978, Joseph Sledge was convicted of murdering Josephine Davis and her daughter, Aileen, near Elizabethtown. On Friday, he was exonerated by a three-judge panel.
Earlier in the week, Bladen County celebrated the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with a parade through downtown Elizabethtown.
Dennis Hawes has seen a lot of big trucks rumble down Poplar Street from his chair located next to the front window of Bridgers’ Barber Shop in Elizabethtown. READ MORE
January 26, 2015: 3 Things to Know
1. Happy Spouse’s Day to those who qualify.
2. BCC’s spring semester Writers Series programs.
3. Would you return $2,631 if you found it in your fast-food bag? READ MORE
This Day in History – January 26
Miss Crusader Crowned
The senior class girls of Harrells Christian Academy were honored recently and recognized as the Miss Crusader Court was presented during halftime of the varsity boys basketball game against Coastal Christian High School. Ashley Usher, daughter of Juston and Joy Usher of Watha, was crowned the 2015 Miss Crusader. Each year, Miss Crusader is voted on by the HCA upper school student body. Miss Crusader should hold the following characteristics: She is a member of the senior class who represents the values and beliefs of Harrells Christian Academy and school mascot, the Crusader; she is a loyal supporter of the green and gold and proud to call herself an HCA Crusader. The Miss Crusader Court is pictured above L-R as follows: Laken Clifton, Caitlin Pusey, Anna Russ, Anne Baker Bryant, Ashley Usher (Miss Crusader), Natalie Hardin (2014 Homecoming Queen), Christian Rhodes, MaryKate Murray, and Margaret Clark. Not pictured: Jessi-Kate Batts, Rylie Evans, and Amanda Sutton.
3 Bladen County towns awarded water project funds
Three Bladen County towns were awarded almost $2 million in loans and grants by the State Water Infrastructure Authority to help pay for drinking water and waste water projects, the N.C. Department of Energy and Natural Resources announced Thursday.
The Town of Clarkton will receive $1.097 million to help fund three projects. Clarkton was awarded a $421,000 revolving loan from the Federal Clean Water State Revolving Fund for its equalization basin project, a $480,600 State Water Infrastructure Fund Waste Water Reserve High Unit Cost grant for its collection system project, and $196,300 from the State Water Infrastructure Fund Drinking Water Reserve High Unit Cost grant for water system improvements. READ MORE
Safe Handling of Ground Meat
Sandra R. Cain
For Better Living
Ground meat has been linked to several outbreaks of food borne illness in the United States. The most notable was in 1993, when four children in the Pacific Northwest died after eating undercooked hamburgers at a fast food restaurant. When ground meat, as well as any meat, is not handled safely, it can become contaminated with harmful microorganisms. To prevent foodborne illness, handle ground meat safely from the time you buy it until you eat it. Here are some tips to help you.
At the grocery store
Don’t cross-contaminate. Put ground meat in a plastic bag before putting it into your grocery cart. Ground meat juices might contain bacteria that can contaminate other foods. If these foods
are not cooked, the bacteria will survive and could cause foodborne illness. Also, put ground meat, and other foods that require refrigeration/freezing in your cart last. It’s also a good idea to make the grocery store your last stop before going home. READ MORE
New Steakhouse and Seafood Restaurant in Elizabethtown
Steaks, ribs and seafood are only a few of the mouth-watering foods offered at Christopher’s Steakhouse & Seafood restaurant in Elizabethtown. The new restaurant opened on January 3rd this year and has been busy serving great food to happy customers every day since.
Open every day of the week at 11 am, customers can enjoy lunch or supper. Community members in our area have been bragging about the food at the new restaurant. READ MORE
Road Closure Status–CSX
SR 1137 – McKee Road is being patched back this morning. It will open either late today or first thing Tuesday morning (will provide a follow-up later today)
SR 1136 – White McEwan Road will remain closed in order to expedite NC 211 paving (they will come back to it once NC 211 is paved)
NC 211 – Is scheduled to be paved back Monday afternoon. The road will probably have to remain closed overnight to allow pavement to cool sufficiently, so plan on first thing Tuesday for opening (will verify this in the afternoon update)
SR 1003 – Twisted Hickory Road will remain open through duration as it is a detour route
SR 1172 – Grimsley Farm Road is closed and will remain closed through late evening Tuesday or early morning Wednesday. READ MORE
Bladen County Sheriff Jim McVicker held a promotions and retirement ceremony Friday for members of his department.
Among those receiving promotions were:
Sgt. R.J. Bailey
Cpl. Cley Carroll
Cpl Daniel Clark
Promotions presented by Capt. Jeff Bridgers
Investigator Matt Hester II
Investigator K Rodney Hester
Promotions presented by Capt. Jeff Tyler
Cpl Matt K. Dennis
Sgt Jimmy Stanley
Three members of the Sheriff’s Department recently announced their retirement, Included were:
Cpl Matt K. Dennis 20 years & 9 months
Sgt Jimmy Stanley 9 years
Sgt Charles Weathers 19 years & 1 month READ MORE
A three-judge panel exonerated Joseph Sledge of a Bladen County double murder after he was imprisoned for 37 years.
The hearing was held Friday in Columbus County.
Delay in high school report cards
Elizabethtown, NC – Report cards are scheduled to go home with all students on Monday, January 26th, however there will be a delay in high school report cards. This is due to a delay in scoring from the NC DPI. The NC DPI must finalize all grades before report cards can be released. The delay may be as long as two weeks, which could mean mid-February before high school grades are completed.
Report cards for grades kindergarten through eighth will be sent home as scheduled on Monday, January 26th. Parents of third grade students will find an insert in their child’s report card from the NC DPI Read to Achieve legislation entitled “What Every Parent of a Third Grader Needs to Know.” This insert provides an overview of the legislation and requirements for third graders as it relates to reading proficiency. READ MORE
Back when Johnson was president, the cost of a stamp was .05 cents, and Boston defeated the LA Lakers in the NBA Championship, Mr. Dennis Hawes, a seemingly quiet man, began his career that would span the next 50 years. This month Bridgers Barber and Beauty Shop celebrates, Hawes, a talented, hard-working, and dedicated barber. Hired in January of 1965, right out of Barber School, Hawes joined Bridgers’ shop. Hawes has been at the same chair since then making the world look better one cut at a time.
Bob Cole a long time customer of Hawes says, “This is a fine man right here, a good Christian, husband, father and friend. I’m proud to say he is my friend.” Cole continues saying, “Dennis has more friends in Elizabethtown than anyone. Everyone respects him and likes him.” READ MORE
Bladenboro man arrested on drug charges
Marcus Theodore Hill of Bladenboro was arrested Jan. 15 on drug charges following a search of a residence at 115 Holly Britt Court by members of the Bladen County Sheriff’s Office and N.C. Probation Office, according to the Sheriff’s Office.
Hill was arrested after investigators found crack cocaine, prescription pills and marijuana in the residence, according to a Sheriff’s Office news release.
Hill was charged with possession with intent to sell or distribute cocaine, possession with intent to sell or distribute marijuana, possession with intent to sell or distribute a Schedule II controlled substance, and probation violation. Bail was set at $200,000.
Struggling with New Year’s Resolutions
New Year’s resolutions are fun to make but extremely difficult to maintain. Every January, roughly one in three Americans take part in the annual tradition of making resolutions. Only a small percentage of people actually stay true to their resolutions. A study shows about 75% of people stick to their goals for at least a week, less than half are still on target six months later. Tiffany McGill, Healthworks Fitness and Wellness Manager, said, “We know these struggles and want to help.” This article will give you some tips on how to stick to your goals.
To lose weight is among the most popular resolutions. It is often seen as just too difficult commit to. But you can succeed if you don’t expect too much too soon. Looking for overnight results makes desperation mode kick in and then you lose the battle. Set small goals each week. Write a journal of how you are exercising and eating right. READ MORE
Coastal Crescent Trail – a new alternate hiking option
The North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation and the Friends of the Mountains- to-Sea Trail (FMST) are pleased to jointly announce the naming of the Coastal Crescent Trail, an additional option for hikers seeking to walk across North Carolina.
The Coastal Crescent Trail, a new hiking option developed by FMST, will serve as an option in eastern North Carolina until the Mountains-to-Sea State Trail (MST) is completed along the planned route, which connects Smithfield, Goldsboro, Kinston and New Bern, following the path of the Neuse River. The newly named trail provides a guided way for hikers to explore communities and natural and historic sites in the ecologically unique and scenic lower coastal plain in Johnston, Sampson, Cumberland, Bladen, Pender and Onslow counties. READ MORE
Rotary and the Fight Against EbolaThe fight against Ebola and other diseases takes a group effort. Mike Davis, a member of the Elizabethtown Rotary Club, gave an update at the club’s weekly meeting on the Ebola outbreak and Rotary involvement. To date there have been 8,500 deaths due to Ebola. “It had the potential to be millions of deaths. How does Rotary Club come into the Ebola issue? Rotarians tried to help meet the need.” Davis said. READ MORE
Bo Knows With Expert Advice
The newest expert at Bladen Builders Supply is Bo Greene. Bo is a Boykin Spaniel that loves to go to work with his human, Jackson Greene. Like the rest of the staff at Bladen Builders Supply, Bo wants to be helpful to his loyal customers. He will start a monthly article with helpful tips and advice. This month Bo shares some DIY tips he hopes everyone will find handy.
“Wooden golf tees are not just for golf,” says Bo. Enlarged screw holes may be repaired quickly by using a wooden golf tee. Fill the enlarged hole with the wooden tee, and then saw the tee so that it will be flush with the wood’s surface. All that is left to finish the repair is to sand and finish your project. READ MORE
USDA Reminds Producers of Upcoming Livestock Disaster Assistance Deadline
WASHINGTON, Jan. 21, 2015 — The U.S. Department of Agriculture reminds livestock producers that the Jan. 30, 2015, deadline to request assistance for losses suffered from Oct. 1, 2011 through Dec. 31, 2014, is fast approaching.
Applications for the Livestock Indemnity Program and the Livestock Forage Disaster Program, restored by the 2014 Farm Bill resumed in April 2014, after having expired on Sept. 30, 2011. To date, more than 556,000 applications have been approved to assist farmers and ranchers in recovering from nearly three years of natural disasters. READ MORE
Bladen County Financials in Order
Bladen County commissioners receive monthly updates on revenues and expenditures for the county. The latest report was presented Tuesday, January 20 and is for the first 6 months of the 2014-2015 fiscal year.
On the revenue side, the county has collected 52.9% of all revenues for the year. There are 4 major sources of revenues. Property (Ad Valorem) taxes, Sales and Service revenues, Restricted Intergovernmental funds and Local Option Sales Taxes. READ MORE
Kiwanis Celebrating 100 Years
The Elizabethtown Kiwanis Club was organized in 1954 and has served the Bladen County community for over 60 years. The club is a collaboration of men and women from our community, school teachers, coaches, college instructors, business people, farmers, and business owners, who dedicate their time to support the children of Bladen County. Together the club strives to better our community and our world through education, guidance, example, and leadership. Their motto is, ”improving the world, one child and one community at a time”. READ MORE
Bladen Community College will kick off its 2015 spring semester Writers Series programs on Tuesday, January 26, with a program featuring author and history professor Dr. David La Vere. He will present a program centering on the Tuscarora War of 1711-1715. He was previously a guest presenter in the series in 2011, when he gave a well-received program on the Lost Colony.
La Vere, a former Marine infantryman, is well-known for his research on the history and culture of the Southeastern American Indian tribes as well as the Indians of the Southern Plains and Texas. READ MORE
Commissioners Schedule Special Meetings
Bladen County commissioners announced at their Tuesday meeting that two special meetings are planned over the next couple of weeks and third is expected soon.
The Bladen County jail project will be the topic of discussion at a special meeting on January 27 at 2:45 p.m. in the commissioners meeting room. On February 9, a meeting is set for any commissioner who would like to attend to learn more more about property taxes. That meeting is planned for 6 p.m. in the same meeting room.
Another meeting is expected to be added soon to discuss issues related to the Department of Social Service. READ MORE
Bladenboro Community Building
Date: Friday, January 30, 2015
Time: 2:00 pm
Location: 109 E. Elm Street, Bladenboro, NC
Refreshments will be served. READ MORE
The Elizabethtown Jaycees were planning to have their Distinguished Service Award Banquet at Wesley’s Chapel United Methodist Church near Elizabethtown.
Mary Blanche Jessup of Elizabethtown was appointed to the Teacher Education Advisory Committee of the North Carolina Board of Education. This appointment was made by State Superintendent Dr. Craig Phillips.
Phyllis McKeithan was named Town Clerk for the Town of White Lake. READ MORE
A collection of paintings by Haley Barnes of Lake Waccamaw is on display through February at the Art Gallery in the Bladenboro Historical Society Building on South Main Street. The show, which is presented by the Bladenboro Visual Arts Council, also includes paintings from her late great grandmother.
A reception for Barnes is scheduled Sunday, Jan. 25 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Art Gallery. READ MORE
The following arrests were filed by the Bladen County Sheriff’s Department from Monday, Jan. 5 through Sunday, Jan. 11. The people listed have not been convicted of the charges and are presumed innocent. Failure to appear charges are not listed.
Monday, Jan. 5
Robert Johnson Britt: Simple assault-free text (misdemeanor)
Jeffrey Andre Rhodes: Assault by pointing a gun (misdemeanor)
Stevie Earl Bullard: First degree rape of child (felony)
Michael Lamar McClendon: Assault with a deadly weapon (misdemeanor) READ MORE
We appreciate our readers, advertisers, and behind the scenes workers more than words can say. BladenOnline.com team members have worked hard to provide the latest news and information to Bladen County for many years. To continue growing and improving, change is a must. BladenOnline.com does have a new layout. READ MORE
Free Boating and Hunting Courses Offered
The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission will be offering several free boating and hunting education courses this year. The classes are held each year and are free to the public. Boating education and hunting education will be 6 hour courses. We will be offering our first boating education class on February 15th from 1pm-7pm. It will be held at Jones Lake State Park. We will also be offering the same course in April, May, June, July, August and October. State law requires any person born on or after January 1, 1988 must complete a NASBLA (National Association of State Boating Law Administrators) approved boating education course before operating any vessel propelled by a motor of 10 HP or greater. Each Student will need to register online to attend each course. Once you have completed the course successfully you will receive your certification in the mail. Read More
Community Service Announcement
Community Recreation Assistance Fund
The Bladen County Parks and Recreation Department is accepting applications for the Community Recreation Assistance Fund (CRAF) The CRAF has been established to aid communities within Bladen County in setting up and conducting active sports programming in their communities for ages 17 and under. To apply for CRAF, we have supplied eligibility requirements, participants’ responsibilities and a form application. If you have any questions please call the Parks and Recreation Department at (910) 862-6770.
Deadline for applications is February 28, 2015.
Schedule for Community Recreation Assistance Fund
July-February… Application Received
March-April… Review Applications and Project Selection
May 1st… Announcement of Approved Projects
May-June… Reimbursement billings Accepted & Project Status Reports
January programs at Jones Lake State Park
Here’s the schedule:
Carnivorous plants: Jan. 31, 2 p.m.: Get up close and personal with the plant that bites back, the Venus Flytrap. Join a park Ranger for an informative program on the Venus Flytrap and other carnivorous plants such as the Pitcher Plant and Sundew.
Meeting Planned for Agriculture and Forest Landowners
There will be an Agriculture and Forest Landowners Meeting on Tuesday, January 27th from 11:00 am to 2:30 pm at the Powell Melvin Agricultural Service Center Auditorium located at 450 Smith Circle Drive in Elizabethtown. Lunch is sponsored by Bladen County Farm Bureau, Cape Fear Farm Credit, and Forest 2 Farm Land Clearing, LLC. Participating Agencies include Bladen Soil and Water Conservation, Bladen County Cooperative Extension, Bladen Voluntary Agriculture District, Farm Service Agency, Natural Resources Conservation Service, NC Wildlife Resources Commission and Bladen County Forest Service. READ MORE
Tax Values coming soon
Ellis said he wanted to allow “enough time to review values, test data and verify sales,” so he delayed mailing them slightly. New values take effect January 1st and Bladen County commissioners will use the values to set the tax rate for the next fiscal year that begins July 1, 2015.
North Carolina law requires counties to do a re-evaluation at least every 8 years, some have shortened that time, but many still operate on an 8 year cycle. READ MORE