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TODAY'S NEWS:  
 

DE QUEEN/SEVIER COUNTY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE KICKS OFF SHOP LOCAL CAMPAIGN FOR CHRISTMAS        11/22/17

 

The De Queen/Sevier County Chamber of Commerce kicked off their Christmas 'Shop Local' campaign this week to encourage area shoppers to purchase their gifts from chamber businesses.

 

Chamber President Patrick Massey reported the chamber will be drawing for weekly prizes every Friday on the Morning Brew with Jay and JP. He said the grand prize winner will win a gift basket full of merchandise and gift cards.

 

Massey said for every $10 dollars you spend at a participating retailer, you'll receive a ticket to drop into the drawing. However, there is a $1,000 cap per purchase.

 

Massey said the chamber has declared December, ''Shop at Home Month." He said by shopping locally you're telling local business owners that you appreciate what they're doing to help our community.

 

For more information, contact the chamber at 870-584-3225.

 

 

SEVIER COUNTY LIBRARY SNIPPETS         11/22/17

 

Sevier County Library System Head Librarian Johney Fisher announced the Sevier County Library System will hold several holiday activities during the month of December.

 

On Saturday, December 9th, at 9:30 a.m. the De Queen Library will show a movie and serve popcorn. On Saturday, December 16th, the library will host Cocoa with Mrs. Claus at 10 a.m. They'll have story time, cocoa, crafts and lots of fun.

 

Fisher said the De Queen Library will continue to host activities for adults every Wednesday at 10 a.m. She said they have dominos, chess, cards, games and coloring books.

 

For more information, call the De Queen branch at 870-584-4364.

 

Fisher said the Horatio Library will celebrate Christmas by showing a Christmas movie every Saturday at 10 a.m. She said they also play dominoes and chess on Thursday mornings at 10 a.m.

 

Fisher said the Lockesburg Library will be having a book sale during the month of December. She said they'll be selling cookbooks, quilting books, Christian fiction, historic romance, children's books, westerns and by some best-selling authors. Stop by and make your selections on Wednesday, Thursday or Saturday mornings.

 

Fisher said the Gillham Library will have their monthly story and craft time on Saturday, December 16th at 11 a.m. She said they will have a bake sale on Thursday, December 21st and the Gillham Library hosts adult coloring on Thursday afternoons.

 

For more information about the Gillham Library call 870-386-5665.

 

 

2017 SEVIER COUNTY 4H TOUR OF HOMES       11/22/17

 

The Sevier County 4-H Leader's Association will host the 2017 Tour of Homes on Sunday, December 10th from 2 to 4 p.m.

 

Linda Frachiseur said tickets are $10 each and may be purchased in advance at the First State Bank or the KDQN studios or at any of the three homes on the day of the tour. She said this year's tour will include Chad and Jessica Gallagher's home at 859 Red Bridge Road, Tony and Debie Stowers' home at 108 Long Meadow Drive in De Queen and the Larson Valley Wedding and Event Venue at 479 Bellah Mine Road in Gillham.

 

Frachiseur said all of the proceeds will used to provide programming for 4-H members.

 

For more information, contact Frachiseur at 870-584-9592.

 

 

THANKSGIVING LEFTOVER FOOD SAFETY       11/22/17

 

Thanksgiving is the time of year when family comes together and to reflect on the blessings they've received throughout the year. It's also a time for food. Many of us will be thinking of the delicious aromas coming from the kitchen including turkey, dressing, pumpkin pie and all the other foods and traditions that go along with it.

 

Once the big meal is over, you are now faced with what to do with the leftovers. Planning for leftovers begins even before the initial preparation begins. Start by following food safety rules when handling your turkey, so you will have some leftover for those sandwiches and casseroles.

 

The first rule of thumb is to debone the turkey and refrigerate all leftovers in shallow containers within 2 hours of cooking. While this may seem like a short time bacteria that causes a food borne illness can multiply to undesirable levels on perishable food that's left at room temperature for longer than that.

 

Gravy, stuffing and meat need to be stored separately from each other. It will be necessary to remove the stuffing from the bird and store it in a separate container. And, remember, you must debone your turkey anyway, so go ahead and put the stuffing in a separate container.

 

If you would like to save the turkey carcass for soup later on, refrigerate or freeze it in a zip-top baggie or other food safe, freezer safe container. But be sure to label it with the date before freezing.

 

Once you have deboned the turkey and placed it in shallow containers for later use, you will want to use it up within three to four days. Stuffing and gravy should be used within one to two days; or you should plan to freeze these foods. When reheating, make sure you reheat it properly to 165 degrees. Temperature should be taken from the middle of the dish and not the edges.

 

Cooked turkey may be eaten cold or reheated. When reheating your turkey in the oven, set the oven temperature no lower than 325 degrees. Reheat to an internal temperature of 165 and use a food thermometer to check the internal temperature. To keep the turkey moist and prevent it from drying out, add a little broth or water to the pan and cover.

 

Microwave ovens are great for heating foods quickly. However, food safety rules apply here too. When using the microwave, cover the food and rotate it for even heating.

 

The holidays are a time to share with family and friends. No one wants to be sick especially this time of year. Following food safety rules will help keep everyone healthy so you can enjoy the holidays.

 

For more information on food safety during the holidays, contact the Sevier County Extension Office at 870-584-3013.

 

 

ARKANSAS FARM BUREAU SETS 83RD CONVENTION       11/22/17

 

Farmers, ranchers and agricultural leaders from across the state will come together for Arkansas Farm Bureau's 83rd annual convention, which is set for November 29th through December 1st at the Statehouse Convention Center in Little Rock.

 

Governor Asa Hutchinson, author Haydn Shaw, humorist Patrick Henry and Arkansas Farm Bureau President Randy Veach will headline the speakers for the convention. The event is expected to attract more than 1,000 farmers and ranchers, and will include workshops on state and federal tax reform, forestry certification, labor and food safety issues, and legislative initiatives along with discussions that cover management and profitability for livestock and row crop producers.

 

Attorney General Leslie Rutledge will serve as the keynote speaker for the Women's Leadership luncheon and the conference will include a trade show that will feature vendors of farm services, equipment and supplies.

 

The convention's theme, "Leading Across Generations," will be reinforced by Shaw, who is the author of "Sticking Points: How to Get 4 Generations Working Together in the 12 Places They Come Apart." Shaw will discuss generational differences, similarities and how to find the common bonds that can lead to organizational success. 

 

During the business session, the voting delegates will define the organization's policy positions on items of importance to Farm Bureau members. The delegate body will also elect the organization's president and vice president.

 

Awards will also be presented to county Farm Bureaus for their work in support of the organization's agricultural advocacy and membership efforts, along with recognition for Arkansas Farm Bureau's Ag in the Classroom teacher of the year, the ag education instructor of the year and the Young Farmer and Rancher Discussion Meet. The organization will also recognize the recipient of the Stanley E. Reed Leadership Award.

 

 

SEVIER COUNTY QUORUM COURT APPROPRIATES $4,000 FOR STORAGE CONTAINER         11/21/17

 

Monday afternoon, the Sevier County Quorum Court held their regular monthly meeting and appropriated funds for the purchase of a storage container for the Sevier County Rescue Unit.

 

Sevier County Judge Greg Ray reported Mac McDaniel of the Sevier County Rescue Unit approached him about the need for a storage container for the unit's boat. He said it was costing the rescue unit money to keep the boat operational with it sitting out in the weather.

 

Ray said he asked the members of the quorum court to appropriate $4,000 from the county's Boating Safety Fund to purchase an enclosed storage container.

 

JPs also passed an ordinance to Levy Taxes for the Taxable Year of 2017.

 

The ordinance states the real and personal property millage rates in the county are 3.3 mills for the county general; 1 mill for the county library; 3 mills for county roads; 43 mills for the Dierks School District; 34 mills for the Mineral Springs School District; 44 mills for the Cossatot River School District; 32.2 mills for the De Queen School District; 35.7 mills for the Ashdown School District; 44 mills for the Horatio School District; 5 mills for City of De Queen's general fund and .4 mills for the city's Firemen's pension fund; 5 mills for the City of Horatio, the City of Lockesburg and the town of Gillham.

 

Judge Ray said the town of Ben Lomond does not have a millage.

 

County budget committee chairman Michael Archer reported his committee has finished the proposed budget and will present it to the Quorum Court during their December meeting.

 

 

DE QUEEN CHRISTMAS PARADE AND CHRISTMAS TREE VILLAGE      11/21/17

 

De Queen/Sevier County Chamber of Commerce President Patrick Massey announced De Queen's annual Christmas parade will be held on Saturday, December 2nd at 6 p.m. and he saId stores and restaurants are being asked to stay open for extended hours on the 2nd so customers will have a chance to shop for Christmas gifts and visit during the parade.

 

This year's theme is "Characters of Christmas" and spectators can expect to see Santa Claus at the end of the parade.

 

Churches, businesses, and organizations are also invited to set up a booth around the courthouse at no cost. Booths should be setup by 4 p.m.

 

Members of the community are invited to stop by the courthouse starting at 4 p.m. to enjoy Christmas music, performed by the band Harmony, visit the vendors who are set up around the square and enjoy the Christmas decorations. The community will also have a chance to view the official lighting of the Sevier County Courthouse during the parade.

 

This year, the chamber will once again host a Christmas Tree Village on the Courthouse Square. There are three categories: commercial, organizations and churches and memorial. Cost to participate is $25 per tree. There are only 20 trees available in this year's village so register as soon as possible. Awards will be given to the first place winner in each category.

 

Participants are invited to decorate their tree for public display during the Christmas parade, however, no plug in lights will be permitted. Trees must be decorated by 3 p.m. on Saturday, December 2nd.

 

For more information or to register for the Christmas Tree Village, contact Massey at 870-582-5746 or email him at pmasseyTAM@hotmail.com

 

For more information about participating in the De Queen Christmas parade, contact the chamber by emailing Matthew King at matthew.king@pilgrims.com or call 870-584-3225 or visit the De Queen/Sevier County Chamber of Commerce’S Facebook page.

 

  

BOOZMAN ENCOURAGES ARKANSANS TO SHOP LOCALLY ON SMALL BUSINESS SATURDAY         11/21/17

 

Our holiday shopping habits have changed over the years. Instead of waiting until Thanksgiving to unveil the season's sales, we've seen more stores offering online deals, advertising the big bargains days in advance of Black Friday and opening their doors before the Friday morning rush. The Friday after Thanksgiving has long been the unofficial kick-off to the holiday shopping season, recent efforts are continuing that momentum into the weekend and since 2010, the Saturday after Thanksgiving has been known as Small Business Saturday.

 

The idea behind this initiative is to promote and encourage shoppers to shop at our locally-owned small businesses. And, it's paying off; as more shoppers are spending money at small businesses. According to the National Federation of Independent Businesses and American Express, an estimated 112 million people reported shopping at a small business on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, which is a 13 percent increase from 2015.

 

Money spent at small businesses gets reinvested in the community and draws attention to local merchants. By taking the small step of shopping locally this holiday season, we can make a big impact on our communities.

 

To highlight the many contributions of local businesses and neighborhood retailers, Senator John Boozman cosponsored a resolution in support of Small Business Saturday. He said Arkansas is home to nearly 250,000 small businesses that employ more than 400,000 people. Boozman said nationwide, small businesses account for 55 percent of all jobs in country.

 

Boozman said as you celebrate Thanksgiving, think about what your thankful for and then add small businesses to the list. He said they are owned and operated by our neighbors, friends, church family and budding entrepreneurs who want a piece of the American dream.

 

Boozman said let's help those small businesses continue to succeed by shopping locally on Small Business Saturday, November 25th.

 

 

LEGISLATIVE UPDATE: #GIVINGTUESDAY        11/21/17

 

District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught said Arkansas is at its best when each of us is making a commitment to help our neighbors. She said as you prepare for the holidays; consider making this winter a season of giving by donating to the organization of your choice.

 

Giving Tuesday is observed on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving and after Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday and kicks off the charitable giving season, when many people focus on their holiday and end-of-year giving.

 

Last year, more than 30,000 organizations in 68 countries came together to celebrate #Giving Tuesday.

 

Through the launch of #Giving Tuesday in 2012, millions of people have been able to experience the unique compassion that the holidays provide. #Giving Tuesday encourages people to add their community to their holiday gift list. On Tuesday, everyone is encouraged to give their time, share their talent or donate some money to the cause of their choice. Vaught said the important thing is to give.

 

Vaught said sometimes small acts of kindness can make the biggest difference. She said you can donate canned goods to a local food pantry or make a monetary donation to a charity in someone's name.

 

Vaught said you shouldn't forget the importance of volunteering. According to surveys, volunteering provides a $2 billion dollar impact on the state's economy each year.

 

This year, there are more than 700 non-profit and faith-based organizations that are based in Arkansas listed on the givingtuesday.org website. The website also provides a search tool to find the organizations nearest you and everyone is encouraged to use the hashtag #Giving Tuesday AR to promote the event.

 

For more information, visit the website www.ArkansasNonProfits.org or www.GivingTuesday.org. 

 

 

MCALLISTER INDUCTED INTO ARKANSAS PURPLE CIRCLE CLUB       11/21/17

 

Madison McAllister of Ashdown was recently inducted into the Arkansas Purple Circle Club.

 

McAllister had the Senior Market Lamb Showmanship at the Arkansas State Fair and Livestock Show.

 

The award was presented to McAllister by Arkansas Farm Bureau President Randy Veach.

 

The Purple Circle Club is an awards program recognizing junior livestock exhibitors who earned championship honors at the Arkansas State Fair. It is sponsored by Arkansas Farm Bureau.

 

 

IN-LAWS, OUTLAWS, AND OTHER PEOPLE WHO SHOULD BE SHOT       11/21/17

 

JoEllen Jones is directing a production of "In-laws, Outlaws and Other People who should be shot" by the Little River Playhouse on the McCurtain County campus of Southeastern Oklahoma State University in Idabel and she is wants you to start your holidays off with a big belly laugh as you enjoy the play.

 

Jones stated you'll enjoy an average family as they attempt to enjoy their Christmas Eve dinner when some uninvited guests appear to make this a Christmas Eve that they won't ever forget.

 

Jones said there are five performances. Times are 7 p.m. on Thursday, November 30th, Friday, December 1st and Saturday, December 2nd and matinees at 2 p.m. on Saturday, December 2nd and Sunday, December 3rd.

 

Tickets are $10, $7.50 and $5 each.

 

Jones said if you arrive early Megann Bryant, Jarod North and Sharon McKeever will be performing about 30-minutes of Christmas music prior to each show.

 

For tickets, contact the box office of the McCurtain County campus of Southeastern Oklahoma State University in Idabel.

 

 

AIR AMBULANCE CRASHED IN ARKANSAS COUNTY        11/20/17

 

An air ambulance crashed in Arkansas County near Dewitt Sunday night, killing three people, according to the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management.

 

Melody Daniel is a spokesperson for the department and she reported the medevac helicopter crashed just before 8 p.m. Sunday night just off Highway 276 killing all three people aboard. The three passengers were Pafford EMS employees and no patients were on board.

 

Pafford EMS is based out of Hope. Pafford EMS twitted out Sunday night that they were devastated by the sudden loss of three of their team members. They also expressed their sorrow for the families involved.

 

According to Arkansas County deputies, the helicopter was completely consumed by fire when they arrived.

 

Lynn Lunsford of the Federal Aviation Administration said the aircraft was flying from Pine Bluff to DeWitt at the time of the accident.

 

 

LOCKESBURG CITY COUNCIL VOTES TO HIRE A SUBSTITUTE DEPUTY CLERK        11/20/17

 

Aldermen of the Lockesburg City Council voted to hire a substitute deputy clerk and her training started immediately.

 

Aldermen hired Rhonda Dean as a substitute deputy municipal clerk. The council voted to allow Dean to work with the deputy clerk for two 8-hour days and one 4-hour day so she can be trained in every aspect of the deputy municipal clerk position. Dean will also work a 40-hour week after the first of the year to learn the quarterly and end of year procedures.

 

Gary Giusti asked the council to extend the deadline for the completion of the library renovation. He informed the council that the door for the mayor's office had not been delivered. Aldermen voted to extend the completion date to December 5th due to the estimated delivery date of the door and the holidays.

 

Lockesburg Fire Chief Doug Currence informed the council that his department had the opportunity to help purchase a Cascade System. He reported the De Queen Fire Department is willing to pay half of the cost if the Lockesburg department will pledge $1,500 for the system. The system will be used to fill the department's Self-contained breathing tanks.

 

Utilities Superintendent, Justin Ruth, informed the council that the city's new sewer line project was just about finished and he requested permission to haul off some old scrap metal.

 

Aldermen voted to allow Ruth to dispose of a trailer, a street sweeper, a generator after he receives permission from the fire department and the dunkin booth after he receives permission from the park's department.

 

Aldermen also approved two building permits from Jimmy Carver for two mobile homes.

 

 

SEVIER COUNTY RESIDENT ATTENDS ARKANSAS FARM BUREAU STATE RESOLUTIONS MEETING       11/20/17

 

 

Bruce Jackson of Lockesburg was among the 86 Farm Bureau leaders who participated in the State Resolutions Committee meeting on November 1st and 2nd in North Little Rock.

 

The committee refined the consolidated policy proposals into a set of formal recommendations to be considered by the voting delegates during the business session of the Arkansas Farm Bureau State Convention, November 29th through December 1st at the Little Rock Convention Center.

 

 

 

 

LADY LIONS SOFTBALL RAISING FUNDS FOR NEW SCOREBOARD       11/20/17

 

Horatio Softball Coach Dustin Bakenhus reported fall practice for the Lady Lions is underway and they are still preparing Lady Lion Yard for the upcoming 2018 season.

 

Bakenhus said the team is raising funds for a new scoreboard. He said they've raised about half the money, but want to have the new scoreboard ordered and installed before their first home game, which is February 27th.

 

Bakenhus said they are selling ad space on the team's billboard for $400 a space to help fund the scoreboard. He said they have space for 48 ads. Bakenhus said they also have a couple of ad spaces on the scoreboard that they will sell for a $2,000 sponsorship.

 

To make a donation or to purchase ad space, contact Coach Bakenhus or call the Horatio High School or administration office.

 

Bakenhus said the Lady Lions finished last season in the 3A state tournament with a 27-6 record, but they feel they have some unfinished business, this year.

 

For more information call Bakenhus at 870-784-1090.

 

 

ARDOT REMINDS DRIVERS TO KNOW BEFORE THEY GO        11/20/17

 

The Arkansas Department of Transportation reminds drivers to "know before you go" and to visit the website IDriveArkansas.com before traveling during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend.

 

Krista Sides of ARDot reported extensive highway improvements continue throughout the state and with those improvements come work zones. She said to aid in your holiday travel, ARDot has been working to open as many lanes as possible, but travels will likely face work zones and possible delays due to the increased traffic volume.

 

The American Automobile Association predicts more than 50.9 million Americans will travel more than 50 miles from home, this weekend. That's 1.6 million more travelers than last year, and 45.5 million are likely to make a road trip of it. The Thanksgiving holiday travel period is defined as November 22nd through November 26th.

 

Sides said to help motorist find ways around accidents and work zone backups on interstates, ARDot has an alternate routes feature on IDriveArkansas.com.

 

In Southwest Arkansas, one lane of Interstate 30 will be closed and is located at the 15 to 18 mile marker near Fulton in Hempstead and Miller counties for three miles in the westbound lane.

 

 

Wilkerson Family Donates to Legacy 2020 Campaign 11/17/17

 

Wilkerson Funeral Home of De Queen has donated to the University of Arkansas Cossatot Foundation Legacy 2020 capital campaign.

 

Room 206 located in the Frachiseur-Pulliam Building on the De Queen UA Cossatot Campus is now named the B Bud Wilkerson Classroom in memory of B Bud Wilkerson.

 

Wilkerson Funeral Home representative Sarah Casteel said, “The college is an integral part of our community. By furthering the education of our area residents, it helps to ensure the future of our community, of which B Bud was so proud.”

 

UA Cossatot Foundation’s Legacy 2020 Campaign centers on donors and businesses that wish to invest in the growth of the college. A naming opportunity exists for donors who wish to leave a legacy for current and future students on any UA Cossatot campus.

 

“The Wilkerson family continually supports our community. It is truly inspiring to see great people invest in the future of local students,” said Dustin Roberts, UA Cossatot Coordinator of Development.

 

More information about the Legacy 2020 Campaign is available on the college’s website at www.cccua.edu/legacy2020.

 

Above: UA Cossatot Chancellor Steve Cole, Wilkerson Funeral Home representatives Sarah Casteel and Katy Brewer, and UAC Coordinator of Development Dustin Roberts.

 

 

 

Caring Hearts & Helping Hand students from L F Henderson Intermediate School help Bro. Jim Cross and other volunteers with the food pantry at the Ashdown Methodist Church. The students unload boxes of food then carry them into the building. Then they help empty the boxes and organize the food. The students get in an assembly line to place one or two items of food in the box then pass it down the line until the box is full. Next a student carries the box of food into a room for families in our community to pick up that afternoon. The students love helping and doing a good service for others. The students pack anywhere from 60-80 boxes each month.

 


Fisher Moon, Davonta Jordan, Rezell Ellis, Lakenya Williams, Rylie Fyock & Ava Abney


Henry Welch, Ashton Trotter, Navaeh Britt, Rechelle Strube, & Cori Dellinger

 

 

Tree Pruning with a Purpose   11/17/17


Fall is a great time to be outside admiring the trees in our landscapes. We take stock of which trees are looking good and which seem to need a little help. If we discover trees that look like they've seen better days, we instantly want to solve the problem. It is natural to want to do something to help a plant – prune it, fertilize it, polish it – we can't help wanting to touch it in some way.

One basic housekeeping chore that might help a struggling tree would be pruning. Pruning is an oft-needed maintenance treatment for good tree health and safety, but pruning without a good reason is not good tree care practice. Pruning just because your neighbor is doing it may not be beneficial for the tree, and could result in too much live tree tissue being removed. This can cause the tree to become stressed, and perhaps decline. In the fall, limit the amount of live tissue being removed and focus mainly on removing dead or broken branches.

In fact, industry tree pruning standards (ANSI A300) say no more than 25 percent of a tree's foliage should be removed in a single growing season. If the tree is of a species that cannot tolerate a lot of pruning, even less should be removed.

When determining how much pruning your tree can tolerate, a qualified arborist may consider if the tree:
is healthy
is still growing rapidly or has matured and slowed its growth
had its roots severed or damaged recently or in the past
suffers from disease
is a species tolerant of heavy pruning

"All that said, fall is a good time to evaluate a tree to plan future pruning that may be needed to meet certain tree health goals," says Tchukki Andersen, BCMA, CTSP* and staff arborist with the Tree Care Industry Association.

A qualified arborist will work with you to set an objective for the pruning job (i.e., what you want accomplished when the work is done). Pruning objectives usually include one or more of the following:
      *reduce risk of damage to people or property
      *manage tree health and direction of growth
      *provide clearance for vehicles or roadways
      *improve tree structure
      *increase or improve aesthetics
      *restore shape

"Once tree pruning objectives are established, the arborist can provide specific details on how your trees could be pruned to get the desired result," says Andersen.

The pruning process can be overwhelming to those not familiar with the pruning of shade and ornamental trees. A qualified tree care expert trained in tree and woody plant health care can answer your questions, as well as help you with your tree-pruning goals. Make sure to ask for tree pruning to be done according to ANSI A300 standards, the generally accepted industry standards for tree care practices.

 

  

 
This Week's News:
 

 

HARMONY ANNOUNCES CHRISTMAS CONCERT SCHEDULE        11/17/17

 

Friday morning, Lynn and Retta Smith of the band Harmony announced they were completely booked for the holiday season, unless your event is on a Monday through Friday.

 

Smith stated they’re releasing their concert schedule this week, so families can make plans to attend one of their concerts.

 

And, here is the Harmony Christmas Concert schedule:

November 25th at Central Mall in Texarkana, Texas. Show times are 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m. and 5 p.m.

November 26th at Baker Rock Church at 6 p.m.

December 2nd at the De Queen/Sevier County Chamber of Commerce Christmas parade at 6 p.m.

December 3rd a private party at Elijah's House for girls

December 9th at Candle Light in Old Washington State Park. Show times are 5:45 and 7:15 p.m.

December 10th at Concord Baptist Church in Ink at 6 p.m.

December 16th at First United Methodist Church in Wickes at 6 p.m.

December 17th at Wickes First Baptist Church at 11 a.m.

and December 23rd at Cerrogorade State Line Baptist Church at 6 p.m.

 

For more information, you can follow Harmony on Facebook at Facebook.com/Harmony.

 

 

LAUNDROMAT ROBBED IN HORATIO         11/17/17

 

On November 9th, the Sevier County Sheriff's Office opened an investigation after the owner of the Horatio Laundromat reported someone stole money out of a washing machine and destroyed three surveillance cameras.

 

Curtis Carver reported he thought the incident occurred between 10 p.m. November 7th and 10 p.m. November 8th. After deputies reviewed the security footage, they discovered the theft and vandalism occurred about 3 p.m. on Wednesday, November 8th.

 

Deputies reported they saw three individuals walk into the laundromat about 2:50 p.m. They identified the people as Shane Barnette, April Hobbs and James McCullon.

 

The incident report says Hobbs put a load of clothes in the washer, but it appeared the machine did not work after she put money in the machine and they started banging on it.

 

According to the report, it appears they tried to use a screwdriver to open the coin box and then they sprayed something on the camera lens, which caused the footage to be foggy.

 

From another camera, deputies witnessed Barnette take a hammer and destroy two cameras.

 

All three have been charged with a felony account of commercial burglary and a misdemeanor count of theft of property. 

 

 

UA COSSATOT STUDENTS AND EMPLOYEES TO ASSEMBLE 10,000 MEALS ON #GIVINGTUESDAY      11/17/17

 

The UA Cossatot Foundation will host a meal packing party on #GivingTuesday, which is Tuesday, November 28th.

 

Over 60 University of Arkansas Cossatot students and employees will work together to assemble over 10,000 meals at the UA Cossatot Foundation #GivingTuesday Funnel Party, hosted by the Pack Shack. The meals will be distributed to college students who are in need through Cossatot's Center for Student Success from 1 to 3 p.m. at the UA Cossatot Bank of Lockesburg Gymnasium.

 

For more information, contact Emily Newlin who is the Director of Institutional Advancement by calling 870-584-1124 or email her at enewlin@cccua.edu.

 

 

SEAT BELTS REMAIN A TOP PRIORITY OF ARKANSAS LAW ENFORCEMENT        11/17/17

 

Traveling during the Thanksgiving holiday will be on the rise and more state troopers, county sheriff's deputies, local police and officers from other law enforcement departments will be out in force to make sure drivers and passengers are properly using their seat belts.

 

Arkansas law enforcement officers will participate in a holiday Click It or Ticket campaign, beginning Monday, November 20th.

 

The Click It or Ticket campaign is designed to save lives by combining powerful messages to the public about seat belt safety with increased law enforcement patrols aimed at unbuckled motorists.

 

During the calendar year 2015, nationwide, seat belts were credited with saving the lives of 13,941 passenger vehicle occupants.

 

For more information about the Click It or Ticket Thanksgiving campaign, visit trafficsafetymarketing.gov.

 

 

CONSUMER ALERT: ONLINE SHOPPING SAFETY       11/17/17

 

Identity thieves and other con artists do not take time off during the holidays. In fact, these criminals often ramp up their schemes to target Arkansans during holiday shopping. Many of us are making more purchases than normal, especially online, which means there are more credit and debit card transactions to track.

 

According to the National Retail Federation, 59 percent of consumers cited online shopping as the most popular shopping destination this year. They also expect holiday sale to increase nearly 4 percent over last year. That means consumers are expected to spend an average of $967 this year on gifts.

 

Attorney General Leslie Rutledge said Arkansans will be shopping more as Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday approaches, but she said consumers should be cautious to ensure their shopping experience is positive and safe.

 

Rutledge also released these following tips to help keep consumers safe while shopping online:

 

Look for the "lock" icon on the browser's status bar, and the phrase "https" in the URL to be sure information is secure to help guard the security of your information as it is transmitted to a website.

 

Check the online merchant's privacy policy before providing any personal financial information and determine how the information will be used or shared with others.

 

Read and understand refund and shipping policies before you make your purchase.

 

Pay by credit card, which is the most secure payment method.

 

Keep personal information private.

 

Be cautious when buying gifts from an online auction.

 

Keep records of online transactions and check for emails from merchants while doing business.

 

Promptly and thoroughly review monthly credit card and bank statements for any errors or unauthorized purchases.

 

Also, research companies before finalizing the online purchase to ensure it is a credible merchant, and check the anticipated delivery date to make sure it will be delivered in time for the holidays.

 

For more information, call the Attorney General's office at 1-800-482-8982 or visit the website, ArkansasAG.gov.

 

 

 

HILL REPORTS DISTRICT IS MOVING FORWARD ON HIGH SCHOOL CONSTRUCTION PROJECT          11/16/17

 

Voters of the De Queen School District passed a millage increase in September for the construction of a new high school.

 

Superintendent Bruce Hill reported he and other administrators are touring area high schools to get some ideas about what they want in De Queen’s new high school.

 

Hill said the school board is also in the process of selecting a construction manager for the project. He said the board should be conducting interviews later this month.

 

Hill said the district was unable to expand or add any technology to the current high school, so they want to make sure they build a building that the district can use for the next 50 years or more.

 

For more information about this project or any of the programs in the De Queen School District, contact the administration office at 870-584-4312.

 

 

COTHERN ANNOUNCES RETIREMENT FROM DIERKS SCHOOL DISTRICT            11/16/17

 

Holly Cothern announced her intentions to retire as the Superintendent of the Dierks Schools District as of June 30th during the November meeting of the Dierks Board of Education.

 

Board members expressed their gratitude to Cothern for her 18 years of service to the district, the students, the teachers and staff and the community.

 

Board members approved a resolution to set the district's annual school board election in May.

 

The board also reviewed the district's legislative audit. Cothern reported the audit contained no findings. And, she said she felt it was a good audit.

 

Board members also approved a non-recurring bonus in the amount of $1,000 for the certified and classified staff of the district as a Christmas bonus.

 

Board members also voted to allow the Jr./Sr. Prom to be held at the Black Pearl in Mineral Springs on April 21st.

 

 

AREA CHURCHES WORKING TO PROVIDE SOME THANKSGIVING BLESSINGS          11/16/17

 

Some area churches are working to provide special blessings to area residents this Thanksgiving.

 

This Sunday, the First Assembly of God Church in De Queen will be handing out their annual Thanksgiving Grocery Blessings following the 10:30 a.m. worship service.

 

Pastor Ray Reynolds said this gives the church the opportunity to love on the community and its people.

 

To receive a grocery blessing, pick up a ticket at the information center as you arrive at the church on Sunday. Children's minister, Dan Nemlowell said you must be present to receive a grocery blessing.

 

Reynolds said the church will also have a Christmas program on Sunday, December 17th.

 

For more information, contact the First Assembly of God Church at 870-584-3435.

 

And, Friendship Baptist Church of De Queen is serving their 6th annual Thanksgiving Day Meal on Thanksgiving Day at their church on 9th Street. Church members will start delivering meals by 10:30 a.m. and they will start serving meals at the church at 11:30.

 

To have a meal, which is one plate of food, delivered to your home call 870-279-0507 or 931-981-0970 to place an order by Friday.

  

 

LOCKESBURG LIONS CLUB ANGEL TREE        11/16/17

 

The Lockesburg Lions Club is currently accepting applications for their annual Angel Tree program, but the deadline is Friday.

 

Lockesburg Lions Club member, Zebbie Launius, reported the club has sponsored the angel tree program since 2009. She said the Lions Club members want to help ensure Lockesburg children have a good Christmas. She said they will put the Angel Tree up at the Bank of Lockesburg on Friday, November 24th.

 

Launius said the angel tree program is for children 17 and younger and applications may be picked up at the Bank of Lockesburg, the Lockesburg City Hall, the Lockesburg Post Office, Nadine's Cafe and the Lockesburg Grocery.

 

If you have any questions, contact the Bank of Lockesburg at 870-289-4071.

 

 

AMERICAN LEGION POST 54 HOSTING A DINNER ON DECEMBER 11TH       11/16/17

 

American Legion Post 54 recently held a raffle for a rifle and a pink Yeti cooler to raise funds to help renovate the Legion Hut on 8th Street.

 

Post Commander Jessie Horton reported the American Legion is a veteran's service organization and Post 54 has 35 members and 30 members in the newly established auxiliary. She said Post 54 will also be hosting a dinner on December 11th at 7 p.m. for area veterans and their families.

 

Horton said the Legion Hut was built in 1934 and desperately needs a new roof. She said if you know a veteran or a veteran's family that needs assistance to please contact her by calling 360-880-8910.

 

 

COST OF THANKSGIVING FEAST DOWN BUT ONLY SLIGHTLY       11/16/17

 

The average cost of the traditional Thanksgiving meal this year is pennies less than in 2016 according to the Arkansas Farm Bureau's 32nd annual survey of food items typically included in the holiday feast. It will cost $44.58 for a family of 10, or $4.58 per person, to enjoy the dinner. That's just 26 cents lower than last year's average of $44.84 and .67 cents lower than 2015.

 

The statewide average is based on responses from members of the Farm Bureau Women's Committee and other volunteers who surveyed food prices at 11 grocery stores and supermarkets across the state. They were asked to report the "best instore price" of 12 items in the meal and are allowed to take advantage of advertised specials, excluding discount coupons and purchase requirements.

 

Arkansas food prices continue to remain more affordable than elsewhere. American Farm Bureau's national survey of price trends for the holiday feast revealed an average of $49.12.

 

Arkansas Farm Bureau President Randy Veach said the fact consumers continue to enjoy the holiday meal for less than $5 a person, is a result of the efficiency of the nation's food production system.

 

Though unscientific, the survey is intended to be a snapshot of actual prices across the state and the nation. The survey period was October 27th through November 7th. The shopping list has remained unchanged since 1986 to allow consistent price comparisons.

 

Travis Justice is the chief economist for Arkansas Farm Bureau and he attributes the slight drop in price to further reductions in the cost of the key items in the menu.

 

He said overall, food-price inflation has remained below 1 percent annually for the past two years.

 

The average cost of a gallon of whole milk dropped 21 cents to $3.01, while one-half pint of whipping cream was down 50 cents to $1.84. At the same time, the average price of a 16-pound young tom turkey increased slightly to $17.29 compared to $16.12 last year.

 

Items that saw modest price increases include a 30-ounce can of pumpkin pie mix, a 16-ounce package of frozen green peas, fresh carrots and celery.

 

 

 

 

CONVICTED MURDERER STACEY JOHNSON IN DE QUEEN FOR HEARING        11/15/17

 

Sevier County Circuit Court Judge Charles Yeargan is hearing testimony today concerning DNA testing in the case of convicted murderer Stacey Johnson.

 

Johnson was convicted of murdering Carol Heath of De Queen in April of 1993.

 

Johnson is being represented by the Innocent Project of New York and they opened the hearing by asking Judge Yeargan to allow expert testimony about the science of eye witness testimony, however, Prosecuting Attorney Bryan Chesshir argued that it was an attempt to attack the testimony of an eye witness.

 

Judge Yeargan ruled that the eye witness expert would not be allowed, however, the hearing continued concerning the DNA testing issue.

 

According to the defense team, the question that must be answered is, "Could they eliminate Johnson as a suspect in the Heath murder by using today's DNA testing technology?".

 

The hearing will continue Wednesday afternoon.  

 

 

TRIAL DATE SET FOR FOUR SEVIER COUNTY RESIDENTS IN LITTLE RIVER COUNTY         11/15/17

 

A trial date was set for three adult suspects who have been accused for the death of an Ashdown man was set for November 27th in the Little River County Circuit Court on Tuesday.

 

20-year-old Joshua King, 19-year-old Brady Winship and 18-year-old Tenescha Wilkerson, all of Sevier County, have been charged with the fatal shooting of 19-year-old Desmond Smith of Ashdown and wounding 19-year-old Samari Covington of Ashdown. The incident occurred on July 16th in Ashdown.

 

King has been charged with murder in the second degree, battery in the first degree and unlawful discharge of a firearm from a vehicle.

 

Winship has been charged with accomplice to murder in the second degree, battery in the first degree and unlawful discharge of a firearm from a vehicle.

 

Wilkerson has been charged with accomplice to murder in the second degree, battery in the first degree and unlawful discharge of a firearm from a vehicle.

 

A juvenile was also charged as an accomplice.

 

The four Sevier County residents were apprehended in Sevier County several hours after the incident.

 

 

TRIAL DATE SET IN NEGLIGENT HOMICIDE CASE IN LITTLE RIVER COUNTY        11/15/17

 

A trial date of November 27th was set this week in the Little River County Circuit Court for 20-year-old Colton Daniel Ard of Ashdown who has been charged with negligent homicide for allegedly causing a fatal vehicle accident.

 

The accident occurred on March 7th, 2016 at the intersection of Arkansas Highway 234 and 108 near Alleene.

 

Ard is charged with felony negligent homicide and misdemeanor driving while intoxicated.

 

The accident killed 18-year-old Mason Gross of Ashdown who was a passenger in Ard's 1993 Jeep.

 

The accident occurred when Ard failed to stop at a stop sign and collided with the trailer of a Dodge truck that was being driven by 52-year-old Lawrence Chandler of De Queen.

 

Ard is currently free after posting a $15,000 bond.

 

 

FORMER CON MAN ADVISES AR SENIORS HOW TO AVOID SCAMS      11/15/17

 

Internet and telephone scams are on the rise, so who better to teach Arkansans how to avoid them than a former con man.

 

Frank Abagnale spent much of his youth conning money from doctors, lawyers and businesses, and then spent 40 years helping the FBI track down scammers. On Tuesday, he spoke to seniors and other at an AARP Arkansas event on how to avoid becoming a victim, warning that just because the person on the phone knows a lot about you that doesn't mean they are on the up and up.

 

Abagnale is now an ambassador for AARP's Fraud Watch Network and he says technology has made it easier for con artists to run a scam. In many cases, he says, telephone or email scams can sound or look legitimate and contain a lot of personal information. Their goal is usually to either steal your identity or get you to send them money.

 

Abagnale warns that scammers can pretend to be a grandchild needing emergency money, an IRS agent, a tech support representative offering to fix your computer, or try any one of dozens of other schemes to frighten you or gain your confidence.

 

Abagnale, whose exploits as a con man were made famous in the 2002 movie "Catch Me If You Can," says when things just don't add up, seniors should calmly check out the information.

 

To find out more about avoiding scams, go to the Fraud Watch Network website.

 

 

WORST TOYS FOR THE HOLIDAYS       11/15/17

 

Fidget spinners, a plastic Wonder Woman battle sword, and a remote-controlled Spider-Man drone are among the toys that top a consumer safety group's annual list of worst toys for the holidays.

 

World Against Toys Causing Harm or WATCH, unveiled their top 10 list this week and they claim fidget spinners are one of the worst toys parents can buy this year because they contain small parts that can be a choking hazard. WATCH says Mattel's Wonder Woman sword can cause blunt force injuries and Marvel's Spider-Man drone has rotating blades that can lead to eye and other bodily injuries.

 

The Toy Association says the list is needlessly frightening to parents because all of the toys sold in America meet the U.S. safety standards.

 

Other toys that made the list is Nerf's Zombie Strike crossbow, Razor's Heel Wheels and Slackline, which is a tightrope like device that is meant to be anchored between two trees.

 

 

HORATIO BOARD ACCEPTS BID FOR POST-DATE WARRANTS        11/14/17

 

Monday night, members of the Horatio Board of Education accepted the bid for their post-dated warrants. Superintendent Lee Smith said the funds will be used to finance several projects throughout the district. He said work has already started on the road at the high school.

 

Smith said the board also approved a resolution to seek a waiver from the Arkansas State Board of Education which will allow the district to start classes earlier than August 19th.

 

Smith also updated the board on the district's E-Rate grant. He stated the district is asking for funds for a fiber optic line that will be installed from the high school to the elementary campuses. Smith said the cable will provide the elementary with the same internet speeds that the high school has.

 

Board members also approved $500 bonuses for all district employees.

 

Board members also set the salary amount for bus monitors. The rate is $25 for certified teachers and $15 for classified staff members.

 

  

4-H TURKEY DAY        11/14/17

 

Kim Frachiseur is the 4-H Program Assistant with the Sevier County Extension Service and she hosted a 4-H Turkey Day this past weekend.


Richard Pearce from Tyson Foods was the guest speaker and he taught youth how to identify different parts of poultry. He showed them the correct names for each part of the bird and the function of each part.

 

Youth then decorated plates and cups with permanent markers and they were placed in the oven to bake. The plates and cups will be used at the Senior Citizen's Center in De Queen for their Thanksgiving lunch.

 

Frachiseur spoke to the 4-H'ers about a little boy in Maine name Jacob Thompson. Jacob is 9-years-old and enjoys Minecraft, Legos and penguins. In early October, doctors told Jacob's family that he had about one month to live due to stage 4 high-risk neuroblastoma. His family decided to fast-track Christmas so Jacob would have the opportunity to have one last Christmas. All Jacob asked for was Christmas cards. So, Sevier County 4-H'ers made and decorated countless cards to send to Jacob to help him celebrate his last Christmas.

 

For more information about 4-H or if you are interested in joining a 4-H club, contact the Sevier County Extension Office at 870-584-3013.

 

 

BURGLARY SUSPECTS ARRESTED FOLLOWING PURSUIT       11/14/17

 

Thursday, November 9th, the Sevier County Sheriff's Office was contacted about a burglary in progress on Lone Oak Road. The caller informed the sheriff's office that the two male suspects left the scene in a white Chevy van.

 

Deputy Kevin Cross observed a white Chevy van on Highway 41 traveling south toward Horatio. Cross reported when he attempted to make a traffic stop, the suspects sped away.

 

Cross said the driver lost control of the vehicle on Pride Street and the suspects started fleeing on foot. An eye witness reported one of the suspects fled toward Caudle Lane.

 

Sergeant Greg Davignon of the sheriff's office, Lieutenant Chad Bradshaw of the De Queen Police Department and the Sevier County Housing Authority Officer, Kim Culp assisted in the search and discovered one of the suspects, 26-year-old Joshua McCollum in a pasture near a wooded area.

 

A short time later, officers located the second suspect, 21-year-old James McCollum in a residence near the accident location.

 

The reporting party informed deputies that he found the two men in his home when he went to check on it. He reported he confronted the men, and they told him that another man had given them permission to be at the house.

 

Both men are being held in the Sevier County jail with multiply charges pending.

  

  

TWO MEN ARRESTED FOR PUBLIC INTOXICATION      11/14/17

 

Sunday afternoon, the De Queen Police Department received a report about two men standing in the callers yard. She reported she did not know if they were doing something to her car or not, but they were swaying and stumbling around.

 

When Officer JJ Lopez observed the two suspects walking in the middle of the street near 8th and Dequincy Avenue, he reported they were stumbling and swaying. He also noted that when he approached the two men, one of them was carrying a charcoal bag with several unopened beer cans in it.

 

Both men failed the portable breath test and they were taken into custody for public intoxication. The two men were identified as 24-year-old Tiba Jibas and 21-year-old Rayton Randy.

 

 

UA COSSATOT OPENS SPRING CLASSES AND SCHOLARSHIPS       11/14/17

 

Enrollment for spring 2018 classes and spri9ng 2018 scholarships and financial aid is open for new and continuing students at University of Arkansas Cossatot.

 

Registration for classes beginning January 16th, 2018 will continue through January 17th; however, classes are filling quickly. Persons interested in enrolling should see Student Services at any UA Cossatot campus or call 870-584-4471. A schedule of classes is available at www.cccua.edu/spring.

 

Some spring scholarships have deadlines as early as November 30th, 2017. To apply for UA Cossatot scholarships, please visit www.cccua.edu/scholarships.

 

Federal financial aid may be available to students upon the completion of the Free application for Federal Student Aid. Complete the FAFSA at the Federal Student Aid website, fafsa.ed.gov. Current students receiving Pell grant for the 2017-2018 academic year do not need to re-apply for spring.

 

The ArFuture grant provided through the Arkansas Department of Higher Education is also open for spring 2018. Students wishing to declare the following majors may qualify for the ArFuture grant: Associate of Science - STEM, Associate of Science - Criminal Justice, Associate of Science - Natural Resources, EMT, Medical Assisting, Nursing, Occupational Therapy Assistant, and Welding.

 

To apply for the ArFuture grant, students must complete the FAFSA in addition to the Youniversal online application at www.adhe.edu. The deadline for spring 2018 ArFuture applications is January 5th, 2018.

 

Students are encouraged to visit UA Cossatot to enroll in spring courses before campuses close in observance of the holidays on December 19th, 2017.

 

 

SWEPCO CONTINUES TO EDUCATE CUSTOMERS ON IMPROPER UTILITY SCAMS     11/14/17

 

SWEPCO is proud to stand with its fellow electric, water and natural gas utilities and trade associations in support of Utilities United Against Scams. UUAS is a consortium of more than 100 US and Canadian utilities and will observe the second annual Utility Scam Awareness Day on Wednesday, November 15th, as part of a week-long advocacy and awareness campaign, November 13th through 17th.

 

Many electric, water, and natural gas customers throughout the country are being targeted by imposter utility scams each day. Scammers typically use phone, in-person and online tactics to target these customers. Scammers pose as electric, water or natural gas company employees, and they threaten that customers' services will be disconnected or shut off if they fail to make an immediate payment, typically by using a prepaid card or other non-traceable form of payment.

 

Scammers can be convincing and often target those who are most vulnerable, including senior citizens and low-income communities. They also aim their scams at small business owners during busy customer service hours.

 

SWEPCO said employees will never demand immediate payment, insist a payment be made with a prepaid credit card or ask a customer to meet us in a parking lot to make a payment.

 

These are some signs of a potential scam.

Scammers may aggressively tell the customer that he or she has a utility bill is past due and service will be disconnected if a payment is not made, usually within less than an hour.

 

Scammers may instruct the customer to purchase a prepaid card, widely available at retail stores, then call them back supposedly to make a bill payment to his or her utility company.

 

When the customer calls back, the caller asks the customer for the prepaid card's number, which grants the scammer instant access to the card's funds, and the victim's money is gone.

 

SWEPCO says customers should never purchase a prepaid card to avoid service disconnection or shutoff. If someone threatens immediate disconnection or shutoff of service, customers should hang up the phone, delete the email, or shut the door. Customers with delinquent accounts receive an advance disconnection notification, typically by mail and it will include their regular monthly bill. And, if customers suspect someone is trying to scam them, they should call their utility company at the number on their monthly bill or the company's website.

 

Customers, who suspect they have been victims of fraud, or who feel threatened during contact with one of these scammers, should contact local law enforcement authorities.

 

 

DE QUEEN HIGH SCHOOL QUIZ BOWL     11/14/17

Submitted by Tammy Whatley

 

On November 4, the De Queen High School quiz bowl team competed in the Center Point Tournament. During the morning competition, the DHS team defeated 4A Fountain Lake, 6A Jacksonville, and 6A Lake Hamilton. After lunch, the DHS team beat 6A state runner-up Benton and were the only undefeated team except for last year’s 6A and 7A state champions, Russellville and Conway. The DHS team lost during the fifth match to 6A Greenwood. The DHS Quiz Bowl team will compete at Ferndale on November 17 and 18.

 

 

LACEY HALL NAMED FOREMAN TEACHER OF THE YEAR         11/13/17

 

Lacey Hall was named the Foreman School District Teacher of the Year during the 2017 Little River County Chamber of Commerce Membership and Awards Banquet.

 

Foreman Superintendent George Kennedy reported Hall wears many hats in the Foreman District. He said she is willing to do whatever the district needs her to do, including coaching boys and girls’ golf, 7th through 12th grade girls’ basketball, girls track and junior high cheerleaders. She also teaches Art 1 and 2.

 

Kennedy stated the board of directors voted to hire Tommy McDonald as the district's IT person. He said McDonald has been helping the district for years but the board had not approved the salary amount.

 

Kennedy also reported the district is growing and they are currently discussing the future of the Foreman High School. He also reported the girls' athletic facility has been sent out to bid and they hope to have the facility built before the start of the softball season.

 

Board members also named Shane Mears the Board's Disbursing Officer.

  

 

SEVIER COUNTY DEPUTIES WORK SEVERAL ACCIDENTS INVOLVING OVERTURNED VEHICLES          11/13/17

 

Chief Deputy Chad Dowdle of the Sevier County Sheriff's Office reported deputies have worked several accidents so far this month involving overturned vehicles.

 

Saturday, November 11th, deputies responded to an accident on Main Street in Horatio.

 

According to the incident report, a 2001 Toyota XTR pickup truck was traveling south on Main Street when the driver, Louis Santiago of Haworth, Oklahoma reported he heard a loud pop come from the left front tire. Santiago said he lost control of the vehicle. The vehicle went into the ditch and struck a culvert, causing the pickup to flip once.

 

That same day, deputies investigated an accident on Central Road and according to the accident report, the driver, Hunter Griffin of Horatio reported he fell asleep and the 1989 Chevy Silverado left the road causing it to start flipping.

 

Kenneth Vaughn of Douglesville, Texas also fell asleep while driving on Highway 7 in Lockesburg. Vaughn said he fell asleep and woke up as the car started rolling.

 

The next day, James Russell of Little Rock apparently fell asleep while driving on Allen Road. He reported when he woke up suddenly he tried to negotiate a curve but drove onto the shoulder. Russell said he lost control of the 1992 Chevy truck and struck a tree.

 

 

TREATMENT FOR PANDA PATIENTS         11/13/17

 

LifeShare Blood Center is hosting a blood drive today at the De Queen Medical Center until 4:30 p.m. and all of the donations will be used to provide IVIG treatments for children suffering from PANS or PANDAS, which are autoimmune diseases that are caused by strep or other infections.

 

Amanda McKee helped organize the blood drive because her son, Landon, was recently diagnosed with PANDAS. Landon tested positive in three of the five antigens that are tested on the Cunningham Panel Test.

 

McKee said traditional treatment begins with a series on antibiotics. She said Landon has been on two different antibiotics, but neither one has been effective. She said his next treatment will include steroids.

 

McKee said if the steroid treatment does not work, Landon will need to go to Dallas for a IVIG treatment. She said it takes 1,000 blood donations for one IVIG treatment and that is why they are holding the blood drive today in De Queen.

 

McKee said she contacted LifeShare Blood Center to set up the blood drive to benefit Landon and other children who have been diagnosed with PANS or PANDAS.

 

For more information about PANDAS, contact McKee on Facebook. For more information, visit the website www.pandasnetwork.com.

 

 

LOCKESBURG ACCEPTING REGISTRATION FORMS FOR CHRISTMAS PARADE FLOATS      11/13/17

 

Mayor Danny Ruth announced the City of Lockesburg has started accepting applications for the 2017 Christmas Parade.

 

Ruth said the parade will be held on Saturday, December 2nd at 4 p.m. He said all participants will need to line up at the Margaret Daniel Coulter Stone Park at 3:30.

 

Ruth said everyone is welcome to participate in the parade, but in order for entrants to be judged a registration form must be completed prior to December 1st and returned to the Lockesburg City Hall. He said when participates register, they will be given a number that must be placed on the left side of the float or entry on the day of the parade.

 

Ruth said the judges will be at the Lockesburg City Hall and all floats and entries will need to slow down or stop in front of the judges, in order for them to view the entry. Categories are: business/commercial, organization, religious and recreational.

 

Prizes will be presented immediately following the parade at the Bank of Lockesburg's parking lot. Ruth said the bank will also be serving hot chocolate starting at 3:30. He said Santa will also visit with children following the parade.

 

 

SEVIER COUNTY INMATE CHARGED WITH FURNISHING, POSSESSION OR USING PROHIBITED ARTICLES        11/13/17

 

Chief Deputy Chad Dowdle of the Sevier County Sheriff’s Office reported a female inmate has been charged with a felony count of furnishing, possession or using prohibited articles.

 

November 3rd, Deputy Kevin Cross was in the B-pod of the county jail conducting a walk through while inmates cleaned the pod and their cells.

 

An inmate asked Cross if she could speak with him. She then informed him that when 33-year-old Brandi Patterson was booked into the county jail on Wednesday, November 1st that Patterson had asked her if any of the other female inmates smoked pot. The inmate told Cross that she told Patterson that most of the female inmates smoked pot.

 

Patterson then allegedly told the inmate that she had snuck some marijuana into the jail.

 

Cross and other jail personnel conducted a shake down of Patterson's cell and took her to the booking room to be searched. While in the booking room, Patterson allegedly admitted she had some marijuana on her person. She then retrieved the marijuana and handed over to the jail staff.

 

Patterson is being held in the Sevier County jail on a $10,000 bond. 

 

 

 

GIFT OF LIFE BLOOD DRIVE AT DE QUEEN MEDICAL CENTER        11/10/17

 

In October, Amanda McKee reported she was working to bring awareness to a rarely diagnosed disease among children called PANDAs. She said PANDAs is a Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorder that's caused by strep infections and affects 1 in every 200 kids.

 

In April of this year, McKee's son was diagnosed with PANDAS after he had been diagnosed with ADHD, OCD, and Turrets. McKee said they continued to seek medical help because none of the medication that her son was taking seemed to be helping.

 

McKee said we need more research and asked the community to help support PANDAs research. She said you can also make a donation to the Saline Memorial Health Foundation in Benton to help other families pay for the cost of the Cunningham Panel test, which is the best way to diagnose a child with the disease.

 

McKee reported children who are diagnosed with PANDAs are initially treated with antibiotics, but if they don't provide the desired outcome, they will need IVIG treatments. She said one IVIG treatment requires 1,000 plasma donations.

 

Monday, area residents can donate blood during the Gift of Life Blood Drive from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the De Queen Medical Center to help McKee's son and other children receive the treatment they need.

 

For more information, visit the website www.pandasnetwork.com.

 

 

SPONSOR A FOSTER CHILD THIS CHRISTMAS        11/10/17

 

Toni Arbour of the Sevier County Department of Human Services reported the department has limited resources and she is asking for assistance from the citizens of Sevier County to help provide Christmas gifts for foster children.

 

Arbour said you may contact the Department of Human Service office and ask to speak with someone in the Division of Children and Family Services to request a child or children to sponsor. She said they will provide you with the sizes and wishes of that child.

 

All gifts should be new and wrapped. Gifts will need to be returned to the office of the Department of Human Services by Monday, December 11th. Arbour said if you wrap your presents, to please place a label on the gift indicating which child, by their assigned number, that you are sponsoring and the contents of the package.

 

For more information, call 870-642-2623.

 

 

THANKSGIVING BLESSINGS FROM THE DE QUEEN FIRST ASSEMBLY OF GOD CHURCH         11/10/17

 

November 19th, the First Assembly of God Church in De Queen will be handing out Thanksgiving Grocery Blessings at 10:30 a.m. following the worship service.

 

Pastor Ray Reynolds reported the church has been offering the Thanksgiving Blessings for the past five years.

 

To receive a grocery blessing, pick up a ticket at the information center as you arrive at the church on November 19th. No deliveries will be available. Reynolds said this ministry touches the lives of people in need.

 

For more information, contact the church at 870-584-3435.

 

  

LITTLE RIVER COUNTY GENEALOGY SOCIETY         11/10/17

 

The Little River County Genealogy Society program for the month of November will be about, "Laynesport."

 

Laynesport was the first town in Little River County. It was founded in 1839 by Benjamin Layne. There will be more than 40 settler families mentioned in this presentation. Some of them were: Layne, Hartfield, Hawkins, Green, Penney, Schuman, and Armstrong.

 

Laynesport had the only ferry access in the area and it lay next to the Indian territory and Mexico, which later became Texas. The major roads leading from Arkansas to Texas came through Laynesport.

 

The program will be presented by Vynn Stuart.

 

the Genealogy Society will meet on Tuesday, November 14th in the Barbara Horn Civic Center on the Ashdown campus of UA Cossatot at 6 p.m. Parking is available in the back of the college.

 

You do not have to pre-register and the meeting is free.

 

Little River County Genealogy Society members are encouraged to attend and anyone interested in learning more about the history of Little River County is welcome to attend.

 

For more information, call 903-278-0681.

 

 

CONSUMER ALERT: DEBT RELIEF SCAMS          11/9/17

 

According to the Arkansas Attorney General's Office, there is no quick and easy way to eliminate debt and those that say it can be done are scams. Debt is a crippling crisis for some and whether it's credit card debt, student loan debt or outstanding medical bills, everyone is looking for a way out of debt.

 

Attorney General Leslie Rutledge released the following list of red flags that could signal an unscrupulous entity when it comes to debt relief: charges any more than a normal fee before it settles your debts. Pressures you to make a voluntary contribution, which is another name for fee. Touts a new government program to help bail people out of their personal credit card debt. Guarantees it can make your unsecured debt go away. Tells you to stop communicating with your creditors. Tells you it can stop all debt collection calls and lawsuits. Promises that your unsecured debts can be paid off for just pennies on the dollar. Refuses to send you free information about the services that it provides unless you provide your personal financial information. Tries to enroll you in a debt relief program. Offers to enroll you in a debt relief program that does not include budgeting and money-management skills training. And, demands that you make payments into a debt relief program before your creditors have accepted you into the program.

 

Rutledge said there are many legitimate programs and strategies for dealing with difficult financial circumstances, nd for more information, contact her office at 1-800-482-8982 or email her at ArkansasAG.gov.

 

Free CWD testing available on opening weekend of deer season in 11 Arkansas counties  11/10/17
Randy Zellers Assistant Chief of Communications

The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission will have voluntary biological sampling stations set up in each of the 11 counties contained in the Chronic Wasting Disease Management Zone this weekend for hunters to get their deer tested for free.

Testing stations will be open from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m., Nov. 11-12. Locations for Boone, Carroll, Johnson, Logan, Madison, Marion, Newton, Pope, Searcy, Van Buren and Yell counties is available at www.arkansascwd.com.

Hunters may bring their deer to any of the sample stations or simply remove the head with a few inches of neck still attached and bring it for sampling. Hunters from outside the CWD zone may bring their samples to any of these stations as well if they wish to have them tested.

Cory Gray, manager of the AGFC’s Research, Evaluations and Compliance Division, hopes to have as many hunters as possible bring in their deer to help biologists monitor the health of Arkansas’s deer herd.

“We need sportsmen and women to help us with these samples,” Gray said. “The more we know about where it is and how far it spreads, the more we can fine-tune our management of the disease in our deer and elk.”

Gray says any person who does turn in a sample from a CWD-positive deer will be contacted by phone as soon as the results are back. From there biologists can work with that hunter to arrange for the meat to be disposed of and possibly reinstate their deer tag if requested. The AGFC also has developed a web app that will allow hunters to check their results for themselves to give them added piece of mind.

“Each person who has their deer tested will receive a test number they can use to look up the results on our website,” Gray said. “It typically takes 10 to 14 days to process and post the results.”

CWD is a fatal neurological disease that affects members of the deer/elk family. It was first described in 1967 in Colorado and since has spread to 23 additional states, Canada, South Korea, and Norway. It was discovered in February 2016, and has since been found in 225 deer or elk in Arkansas after thousands of test samples from across the state.

It is similar to “mad cow disease” in cattle. These diseases are caused by a misshapen form of the prion protein, which accumulates in the tissues of affected animals, especially the brain, spinal cord, and lymph nodes. Infected animals may not show signs of disease at first, but late in the disease process, they will be thin and may demonstrate weakness, abnormal behavior, excessive thirst or drooling.

There has been no confirmed case of CWD affecting humans or livestock, but with an abundance of caution, the Centers for Disease Control warn that people should not consume any deer or elk known to have CWD.

For more information about CWD and other ways to get your deer tested, visit www.arkansascwd.com.

 

Arkansas girl already getting it done at 7 years old    11/10/17
Jim Harris

As a precocious 7-year-old, Brinlee Usdrowski has already had the kind of hunting experiences that many adult hunters only dream of.

It wasn’t that just a year ago, during modern gun deer season, then 6-year-old Brinlee took down two deer with one shot. That was only the beginning. She proceeded to down a gobbler in April during the youth hunt weekend. Then a 300-pound black bear this fall, with a crossbow. Only to follow all that up with a nice 8-point buck during muzzleloader season. And before you think it’s all about the taking, Brinlee is right there helping with the skinning of the harvested animals, her father says.

Her dad, Pat Usdrowski, who lives near the Brady Mountain area off Lake Ouachita, surely has heard from other dads reminding him, “She’s daddy’s girl now, but just wait until she’s a teen-ager.” In this case, Pat Usdrowski might have the female version of the new “American Sportsman” on his hands. Wait until the national reality TV channels hear about this one. Move over, “Duck Dynasty.”

“Brinlee can still dress up and be a princess girl, but she’s all country when she’s with me,” Pat said.

She had missed a turkey a year earlier, he noted, so when 2:10 a.m. rolled around this past April, on the first day of the youth turkey hunt, Brinlee was ready to go. “How many little girls would do that?” Pat asks.

“Last year she killed her first deer. She got two deer, a doe and a nubbin buck, with one shot, using a 20-guage with 3-inch buckshot,” Pat recounted. “That’s how the big game stuff started.”

That’s also how the practicing started. It’s nothing, Pat said, for Brinlee to want to practice shooting her .22 with hundreds of rounds, as well as shooting the 20-guage with bird shot. For the turkey season, she was hauling around an 11-87 camouflaged turkey gun.

At Pat’s homestead on Brady Mountain Road, they have seen bear around, though he adds that when the acorns begin to fall, the bear leave. Paul keeps a deer feeder filled with food. Brinlee and Pat were in his deer stand late in the afternoon one recent Saturday, hoping a bear might wander past. At about 6:40 p.m., one did, coming as close as about 15 yards, Pat estimated. Brinlee, ready with a crossbow, took aim and hit the bear behind the shoulder.

“We have pictures of the bear coming up on the game camera, a 300-pound female. It didn’t have any cubs, so I had assumed it was a big male. After Brinlee shot, it ran, but it didn’t make it 100 yards before it fell down,” Pat said. “We gave it until 7:20 before going to it, and it was laying up there dead.”

Pat fixed a Thompson Encore muzzleloader with a scope so Brinlee could be ready this fall for a bigger deer than the two she brought down last year.

“She ended up killing an 8-point the first thing in the morning,” Pat said. “We heard it and noticed it in the distance, but for her it was a little bit too far in the woods. But it worked its way toward us. I asked her after she had shot, ‘How did it kick?’ She said, ‘About like my squirrel gun.’ That’s a .22. I think maybe she was just a little bit excited, because that muzzleloader kicks. That was 100 grains of powder and a 200-grain bullet. She loved that muzzleloader.”

Brinlee’s taking up where big brother Hunter, now 19, left off. Hunter is in college at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and was all eaten up with hunting at an early age, too, getting his first deer at 6, and first buck and turkey at 7. “They started about the same age, but she’s outdoing Hunter already with the bear.

“She’s all about hunting and fishing. At a parent-teacher conference, she told the teacher, ‘We follow the seasons at our house. It’s bear and deer season, then squirrel season, then fishing season, then turkey season, and then swimming season.” She’s also a mountain climber, Pat says.

Brinlee’s other brother, 14-year-old Garrett, also likes to hunt, but maybe not to the extremes of little sis. And Pat Usdrowski didn’t experience this kind of success as a kid, either. His hunting for much of his youth was solely for squirrels, which were (and still are) prevalent around their home, but he hunted no big game at least until eighth grade. “My dad had a Sheridan pellet gun, a .20-caliber that he had since he was a kid. When he gave it to me, I was in fourth grade. I killed 20 squirrels that year with that pellet gun. We had mountain curs that went with us. It’s still a wonder I never got lost in the woods.”

With his two boys and now Brinlee, hunting is a full day spent together with backpacks full of food, drinks and more.

“We mainly hunt public land in the Ouachita Mountains, and we’ll setup against the oak trees. Brinlee will sit there all day. Her ears are so good, she hears everything before I do. Like that turkey, it gobbled at us two times, and then I didn’t hear it again and she whispered, ‘I hear it right over there.’ I couldn’t hear what she heard and it probably would have gotten away without her hearing it. Instead, she was able to get on it.”

Next for Brinlee? A nice visit from Santa for all her good hunting, perhaps. “She wants her own Muddy Girl crossbow. She was using mine for the bear. I had bought two of them this year and let her use one. But she wants her own.”

 

SAMARITAN'S PURSE PROJECT:  OPERATION CHRISTMAS CHILD UNDERWAY LOCALLY      11/10/17

The Samaritan's Purse project Operation Christmas Child gathers and distributes shoeboxes filled with toys, hygiene items, clothes, shoes and school supplies.  The boxes go to needy kids all over the world to show God's love.  This could be the first gift the child has ever gotten.

Since 1993, Operation Christmas child, which is the worlds largest Christmas project of its kind, has gathered and sent more than 146 million shoebox presents to kids in more than 160 countries and territories.

In 2017,. Operation Christmas Child hopes to get enough gifts to reach another 12 million in countries world wide.

Anybody can pack a shoebox.  National Collection week is November 13-20.  There are about 5,000 drop-off locations in 50 states and Peru.  You can learn how to pack a shoebox at samaritanspurse.org/occ.

First Baptist Church is a drop-off location for Sevier County.  Drop off hours are as follows:  November 13, 14, 16, & 17,  5-7 pm, and November 20 9-11am.  For questions about Operation Christmas Child or the drop-off location, contact Liz Trimble at (870) 279-1219.

 

Domtar Center for Workforce Excellence Named    11/10/17

University of Arkansas Cossatot has commemorated over one million dollars of educational support and over 15 years of partnership with Domtar Mill in Ashdown by renaming the testing center on the Little River campus to Domtar Center for Workforce Excellence.


The workforce center in Ashdown has been the site of extensive industry training and testing financed largely by the generosity of Domtar industries.


UA Cossatot hosted a renaming reception on its Ashdown campus on October 27 to unveil signage and offer an opportunity for local and state officials, Domtar and UA Cossatot leadership to meet.


In attendance was University of Arkansas System President Don Bobbitt. He said, “It is partnerships like these that will be vital to the wellbeing of higher education in the future.”


Domtar General Manager Bob Grygotis shared that the investment of time and money into UA Cossatot has been a huge factor in the improvement and continual growth of the workforce benefitting all of Little River County, not just Domtar.


Also in attendance were UA Cossatot Chancellor Steve Cole and UA Cossatot staff, Susan Bobbitt, Little River County Judge Mike Cranford, Domtar Manager of Communications and Government Relations Tammy Waters, Domtar Operations Manager Steve Smith, Domtar Human Resource Manager Mark Campbell, Domtar Training and Development Manager Jimmy Ivers, Domtar Safety Manager Jason Young, Senator Barbara Horn, Arkansas Community Colleges Director of the Center for Workforce Kyla Waters and Ashdown School District Superintendent Jason Sanders.
 

 

WAREHOUSE GROUNDBREAKING   11/09/17

Husqvarna Lawn and Garden Products in Nashville hosted a groundbreaking ceremony Wednesday afternoon to mark the addition of a 350,300 square foot distribution center and materials warehouse.

The ceremony was the second that day for the company as Husqvarna Plastics, located north of town, also hosted an event as the company "flipped the switch" for a new solar power installation.

Joe Wilson, Human Resources Director, says the company is committed to Nashville and growing local industry.

Steve Harvill, plant manager, presented some initial data at the event and Jim Moore, Vice President Supply Chain, said Husqvarna is investing in America...while other industry invests in foreign countries.

Program Manager Todd Anderson said the project plans really ramped up the last eight months. Construction is expected to last eleven months.

The Nashville manufacturing, warehousing, and distribution footprint will exceed 874,000 square feet with the distribution center addition. Capital investment for the new facility totals approximately $24 million, including the interior racking system.

Jonathan Canaday
News Director - Southwest Arkansas Radio

HUSQVARNA FLIPS THE SWITCH      11/09/17

 

Husqvarna in Nashville hosted a flip-the-switch ceremony Wednesday morning to mark the completion of a solar power installation at Husqvarna Plastics, located north of town on Old Airport Road.

The ceremony included remarks from Plant Manager Marty Renfrow, Mayor Billy Ray Jones, Today's Power, General Manager Tony Cochran, and other Husqvarna officials.

Todd Anderson served as project lead and says the installation is part of a larger initiative and long term vision to reduce Co2 emissions. The solar facility will provide approximately 30% of the required annual electric power consumption for the Nashville HPN Operation.

Valentin Dahlhaus, senior vice president of group operations for Husqvarna, said the company has extended the Sustainability Initative with this investment of a 1 Megawatt Solar Electric Generating Facility in Nashville. Lieutenant Governor Tim Griffin also spoke at the event and talked about encouraging projects of this nature to create job growth.

The solar array uses approximately 4 and 1/2 acres of property and has been finished as a service utility level installation.

Jonathan Canaday
News Director - Southwest Arkansas Radio

 

 

DE QUEEN PD INVESTIGATING STOLEN TRUCK AND MOTORCYCLE      11/9/17

 

Wednesday morning about 6:30, a De Queen resident reported his motorcycle had been stolen out of his front yard. Around 10 a.m., the owner of a used car dealership reported a used truck had been stolen from his car lot.

 

Shad Morphew reported he noticed his motorcycle was missing when he went outside about 6:30 Wednesday morning. He said a saw the bike Tuesday night about 10:30.

 

The motorcycle is a red and white, 2007 model Honda Enduro bike. It's valued at $3,300.

 

Later that morning around 10 a.m., Officer Jim Kight took a report from Benito Camarillo about a stolen pickup from his used car lot.

 

Camarillo said the yellow 1986 model Chevy Silverado pickup was stolen off the lot of the Highway 41 Used Cars. He said the last time he saw the pickup was around 9:30 Tuesday night.  Camarillo said the pickup was parked on the north side of the lot.

 

The truck is valued at $8,000.

 

If you have any information about these incidents or if you know where either the motorcycle or the pickup is located, please contact the De Queen Police Department at 870-642-2210.

 

 

BROTHERS KEEPERS DONATES $1,130 TO SEVIER COUNTY TOYS FOR TOTS         11/9/17

 

Last Friday, the Brothers Keepers Motorcycle Club #34 of De Queen presented a $1,130 check to the Sevier County Rescue Units' Toys for Tots program.

 

Club President Jerry Ligon and Sergeant of Arms Jay Litchford reported the club started earlier this year with eight members and they now have 19 members with two associate members. Litchford said it's been a great year.

 

Litchford said the club raised the money for the Toys for Tots program by hosting a Poker Run in August. He said they are also selling tickets for a handmade cedar ice chest. Tickets are $1 each or 6 for $5. He said they will be drawing the winning ticket on Friday, November 17th on the Morning Brew show.

 

Litchford said to become a member of the Brothers Keepers Motorcycle Club, you must be a firefighter.

 

Several members of the local Brothers Keepers club will attempt to ride 1,000 miles this Saturday from De Queen to Midland, Texas in 24-hours to earn the Saddle Sore 1,000 patch.

 

 

 

  

STUDY FINDS FEWER UNSAFE SLEEPING DEATHS FOR INFANTS IN ARKANSAS         11/9/17

 

Public health officials say far fewer Arkansas children died from unsafe sleeping environments or Sudden Infant Death Syndrome in the past year. A new report by the Arkansas Department of Human Services shows that child deaths from suffocation or other injuries while sleeping dropped 62 percent from 2016 to 2017.

 

Mary Aitken with the Injury Prevention Center at Arkansas Children's Hospital, says state officials and other advocates have worked in recent years to teach new parents the A-B-Cs of putting infants down to sleep, Alone, on their Backs and in a Crib.

 

Aitken says the American Academy of Pediatrics also recommends that babies sleep without blankets, stuffed animals, or other objects in their crib that could cause them to suffocate. She says sometimes well meaning adults or grandparents give young parents outdated or improper advice on the best way for an infant to sleep.

 

Aitken adds that it often seems counter-intuitive to new parents to put their infants in a crib by themselves when there is a warm, inviting bed for them to sleep in.

 

She adds that often, low income families don't have the information or the resources to provide a safe sleeping situation.

 

The study also tracks several other causes of death for Arkansas children, including medical conditions, injuries, vehicle accidents, drownings, guns and fires.

 

Here in Sevier County, the Sevier County Health Unit is hosting a safety baby shower for pregnant women on Thursday, November 16th at 5 p.m.

 

The shower will include education on home safety, safe sleep, shaken baby syndrome and abusive head trauma, and child passenger safety in a festive, shower-themed atmosphere, complete with refreshments, decorations, games and prizes. Shower gifts will include various home safety products, instructional DVDs on infant crying and shaken baby syndrome and convertible child safety seats. Participants will meet with a trained Child Passenger Safety technician to receive the child safety seat and individual training on how to properly install and use the car seat.

 

Fathers to be and grandparents are also invited to attend. And, Spanish interpretation will be available.

 

Space is limited, so call 870-642-2535 to make your reservation.

 

 

UA COSSATOT OUTSTANDING STAFF AND FAULTY HONORED        11/9/17

 

UA Cossatot has honored Tony Hargrove as the Outstanding Staff and Tabetha Nguyen as the Outstanding Faculty at an award ceremony at the 2017 Arkansas Community Colleges Conference. in Little Rock.

 

Staff and faculty at UA Cossatot nominate and vote for the ultimate winner of both of these awards annually. Outstanding Staff and Faculty honorees provide services to students and employees that allow them to standout when election time rolls around each year.

 

Director of Informational Systems Support Hargrove of De Queen is a 2012 graduate of the University of Arkansas and an employee of UA Cossatot since 1998. Hargrove works long hours each day and most every weekend to ensure the technology at the college is properly operating. Hargrove is also known to be a Hogs fan, a golfer and a musician.

 

English instructor Nguyen of Nashville has been an English faculty member at UA Cossatot since 2014. She graduated from Henderson State University with a Bachelor of Arts in English and from National University with a Master of Arts in English. She teaches developmental English courses, Composition I and II, literature courses and even some specialty courses like Genres in Literature: The Vampire Novel or Drama. Nguyen is a member of the National Association for Developmental Education and serves as an executive board member of the Arkansas Association of Development Education. Locally, she also volunteers her time as a board member for the Arkansas Single Parent Scholarship Fund of Howard County.

 

UA Cossatot Chancellor Steve Cole said Tony and Tabetha are assets to UA Cossatot. He said these two individuals do more than most know to help the college and the college's students to move forward. Cole said its people like them that make Cossatot feel like home to so many people.

 

 

FAULKENBERRY INDUCTED INTO ARKANSAS PURPLE CIRCLE CLUB       11/9/17

 

Kane Fualkenberry of De Queen was recently inducted into the Arkansas Purple Circle Club.

 

Faulkenberry had the Grand Champion Commercial Gilt at the Arkansas State Fair and Livestock Show.

 

The award was presented to Faulkenberry by Arkansas Farm Bureau President Randy Veach.

 

The Purple Circle Club is an awards program recognizing junior livestock exhibitors who earned championship honors at the Arkansas State Fair. It is sponsored by Arkansas Farm Bureau.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ACTIVITY REPORT FOR SEVIER COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE      11/9/17

 

Wednesday afternoon, Sevier County Sheriff Robert Gentry released the monthly activity report for the deputies of Sevier County Sheriff's office.

 

Gentry reported deputies conducted a total of 170 traffic stops, issued 156 warnings and wrote 21 citations, while patrolling a total of 24,941 miles throughout the county. He said they also worked 25 accidents and made 26 arrests.

 

Gentry said a total of 74 inmates were booked into the county jail. This month's community service took place along Provo, Bellah Mine, South Park, Red Bridge, Crow, Piney, North Park, Johnson Bridge, Stateline, A.L. Tribble and Westline Roads. Community service workers were also provided to the county library, Salvation Army and the county shop.

 

Gentry reported the School Resource Officer managed 17 complaints on the high school campus, nine on the elementary campus and six complaints concerning bus riders.

 

Gentry reported 11 inmates graduated from the county's Residential Substance Abuse Treatment program. He said the First Baptist Church provided a meal and the De Queen First Assembly of God Church conducted the ceremony.
 

 

Little River County Genealogy Society presents program on Laynesport   11/08/17

The Little River County Genealogy Society program for November will be, “Laynesport.” Laynesport was the first town in Little River County founded in 1839 by Benjamin Layne. There are more than 40 settler families mentioned in this presentation. Some of the more prominent were: Layne, Hartfield, Hawkins, Green, Taaffe, Penney, Schuman, Hamiter and Armstrong. Laynesport had the only ferry access in the area and it lay next to the Indian territory and Mexico, which later became Texas. The major roads leading from Arkansas to Texas came through Laynesport. You don’t want to miss this presentation about the past that helped bring us to the present. LRCGS member Vynn Stuart will present the program.

The Genealogy Society will meet Tuesday, November 14 at UA Cossatot Campus-Ashdown at 6:00 p.m. in the Convention Center. Parking is available in the back of the college. You do not have to pre-register and the meeting is free. All LRCGS members are urged to attend and anyone interested in learning more about the history of this area is welcome to attend. For more information call 903-278-0681.

DE QUEEN CITY COUNCIL STARTS WORKING ON 2018 BUDGET         11/8/17

 

Tuesday night, aldermen of the De Queen City Council heard from several department heads concerning their proposed budget "wish lists" and they passed an ordinance to rezone Angie Walkers' property at the corner of 9th Street and Coulter Drive as a C-2 District. Walker reported she plans to develop a small mobile home park to help provide affordable housing for Pilgrim employees.

 

Mayor Billy Ray McKelvy said the request was approved by the Planning Commission and the city council simply needed to finalize the zone change.

 

McKelvy asked the council to amend the 2017 budget, so the city water department could purchase a Sonic Flow Meter and a Chemical Feed Pump for a total of $7,700. He also asked the council to move $12,000 from the city's street maintenance of streets and bridges line item to the city's street program line item, so the city can pave an alley behind the First United Methodist Church.

 

The city's sidewalk grant was approved but it was not fully funded by the Arkansas Department of Transportation. Mayor McKelvy said it was close to a $500,000 project, but ARDot only awarded the city $222,000.

 

Aldermen heard proposed budget requests from the Sewer Department, the Water Department, the Street and Sanitation Departments, the District Court and the Police Department.

 

 McKelvy said aldermen will review the proposed budgets of the administration and finance departments, the Cultural Awareness Center, the Fire Department, Parks and Recreation Department, the cemetery, and the city pool during their next regular meeting.

 

 

WOLCOTT INDUCTED INTO ARKANSAS PURPLE CIRCLE CLUB       11/8/17

 

Ethan Wolcott of De Queen was recently inducted into the Arkansas Purple Circle Club.

 

Wolcott had the Grand Champion Saanen Senior Doe, Grand Champion Toggenburg Junior Doe and the Grand Champion Toggenburg Senior Doe at the Arkansas State Fair and Livestock Show.

 

The award was presented to Wolcott by Arkansas Farm Bureau President Randy Veach.

 

The Purple Circle Club is an awards program recognizing junior livestock exhibitors who earned championship honors at the Arkansas State Fair. It is sponsored by Arkansas Farm Bureau.

 

 

 

LITTLE RIVER COUNTY LAND OF LIGHTS PAGEANT REGISTRATION IS UNDERWAY        11/8/17

 

The 19th Annual Miss Land O'Lights Pageant is Saturday, November 18th in the Ashdown High School Auditorium.

Little River County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Fonda Hawthorne reported they will have eight age categories, including Baby Miss 1 to 23 months, Tiny Miss 24 to 35 months, Little Miss 3 to 4 years, Petitie Miss 5 to 7 years, Young Miss 8 to 10 years, Junior Miss 11 to 12 years, Teen Miss 13 to 14 years and Miss Land O'Lights 15 to 18 years. She also stated there is a talent contest for boys and girls, which will be separated into three divisions. The divisions are 5 to 10 years, 11 to 14 years and 15 to 18 years. .

 

For more information, contact the Little River County Chamber of Commerce by calling 870-898-2758.

 

 

LOCKESBURG QUILT SHOW IS NOVEMBER 11TH        11/8/17

 

The Lockesburg Quilters and Crafters Guild will host their 2017 Autumn Colors Quilt Show this Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the refurbished UA Cossatot Bank of Lockesburg Gymnasium on the Lockesburg campus of UA Cossatot.

 

There will be several quilts on display along with vendors and homemade refreshments.

 

If you would like to enter a quilted item to be displayed, drop the item off at the First Baptist Church on Thursday between 6 and 8 p.m. or at the gym on Friday between 3 and 6:30 p.m. There is a $3 entry fee for each item.

 

Categories include: hand quilted, appliqué, antique and miscellaneous.

 

Admission to the show is free, however, the guild will accept donations at the show and use the money to help local under privileged children this Christmas. Guests will also be able to vote on their favorite quilt, chat with the quilters and purchase quilted items, supplies and fabric.

 

If you have any questions about entries or if you would like to be a vendor, call 870-287-5178 or 870-784-4388.

 

 

UA COSSATOT TO HOST A VETERAN'S DAY BREAKFAST THIS FRIDAY      11/8/17

 

This Friday, UA Cossatot will host its 6th Veteran's Day Breakfast for local military men and women from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. in the Skilled Trades Building on the De Queen campus. Tommi Cobb of UA Cossatot said she started organizing the event after Michael Wright, a veteran and employee of Cossatot, spoke to her about honoring our local veterans.

 

Cobb said American Legion Post 54 Commander, Jessie Horton will present a historical account of our local veterans and their participation with the American Legion. Cobb said local veterans will also present and retire the colors in their uniforms.

 

Cobb said Post 54 will also display their war memorabilia.

 

Cobb also issued an open-ended invitation to all veterans to attend the breakfast this Friday morning.

 

For more information, call Cobb 870-584-1158.

 

 

 

LEGISLATIVE UPDATE: VETERANS DAY         11/8/17

 

District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught stated our state owes a debt that we can never fully repay to the veterans of our state.

 

Vaught said as Veterans Day approaches, the legislature wanted to thank everyone who has served and who now continue to live and work in the state.

 

Arkansas is home to 225,000 veterans. Of those veterans, 186,000 served in a time of war.

 

Whether they served in a time of war or peace, veterans share a common bond, which is their unwavering belief in the cause of freedom, a belief that is so strong that they were willing to give their lives, if needed, in defense of this nation.

 

Last week, Vaught updated her constituents on the progress of the new veteran's home in North Little Rock. This week, she wants to remind you about some legislation that was passed to keep our state a place where veterans and active military members feel appreciated.  

 

Act 141 will exempt military retirement benefits from state income tax beginning next year. Currently, 13 other states offer veterans this benefit. Around 26,000 Arkansans are currently receiving retirement pay.

 

Vaught said the legislature also passed a bill to provide tuition assistance for soldiers and airmen of the Arkansas National Guard. Act 741 allows a soldier or airman of the Arkansas National Guard to attend a state-supported institution of higher education tuition-free.

 

Act 204 requires the medical board, nursing board, pharmacy board, and dental board to waive the annual renewal fees for active military members.

 

Act 131 states the driver's license of military members will not expire while the individual is living out of state if he or she applies for an extension of the expiration date.

 

And, Act 807 allows the Department of Veteran Affairs to create a date collection system to locate veterans and military families living in Arkansas to ensure they have access to information and resources that are available to them.


 

 

 

Local Law Enforcement Execute Search Warrant   11/7/17

 

Friday afternoon, officers with the De Queen Police Department, the Sevier County Sheriff's Office and the Arkansas State Police assisted the United States Secret Service Department with the execution of a search warrant for counterfeit bills at 160 West Locke Avenue.

 

No arrests were made and the investigation is on-going.

 

Burn Ban for Little River County is Lifted   11/7/17

 

Monday afternoon, Little River County Judge, Mike Cranford, announced that the countywide burn ban had been lifted based on information that he received from the Arkansas Forestry Commission.

 

For more information, contact Judge Cranford at 870-898-7202.

 

 

DE QUEEN SIGNS CLOSING DOCUMENTS FOR BOND ISSUE        11/7/17

 

Monday, the De Queen Board of Education held their regular monthly meeting at noon to sign the closing documents on the sale of $6 million dollars worth of bonds.

 

Ray Beardsley of First Security reported they offered $6 million dollars worth of bonds. He said there were three bidders and the district received a lower interest rate than he expected.

 

Superintendent Bruce Hill said the lower interest rate will lower the district's monthly payment amount to about $280,000.

 

Beardsley also reported the district will sell another $5 to $6 million dollars in bonds in December or January. Beardsley also informed the board the high school construction project must be completed by November 20th of 2020.

 

Hill informed KDQN that the district's architect is currently working on the drawings. He said the district wants the most modern classrooms possible and top-notch labs.

 

Hill reported the Middle School roof project was moving along and work on the track should start soon.

 

Hill also announced the district will be hosting its annual Senior Citizen Thanksgiving lunch on Thursday, November 16th at 11:30 in the Elementary cafeteria.

 

Board members also approved consolidating all of the scholarship accounts into one checking account. Hill informed the board that this was a recommendation from the auditor.

 

 

CITY OF DE QUEEN STARTING TO WORK ON 2018 BUDGET        11/7/17

 

Aldermen of the De Queen City Council will start working on the 2018 budget tonight during a regular called meeting at 6 p.m.

 

Mayor Billy Ray McKelvy informed the council that he would like to amend the budget to include the purchase of a new flow meter for the raw water line and another chemical feed pump.

 

McKelvey reported the new flow meter will cost about $6,000. He said the old meter was installed in 2000. He said the new meter would be a sonic meter and will fasten around the pipe and use radio signals.

 

McKevly said a chemical feed pump will cost about $1,600. The city purchased a chemical feed pump last year and they had to put it into service, so the city does not have a backup.

 

McKevly suggested they shift funds from the Maintenance line item to cover the cost of these to items

 

McKevly also informed aldermen that he would like to pave the alley behind the First United Methodist Church. He said the alley has a lot of traffic. McKelvy said it would also solve some drainage problems for a house that sits north of the alley. He said it would cost about $6,700 to pave the alley. He recommended they shift funds from the Maintenance of Streets to cover the cost of this project.

 

Aldermen will consider these matters as well as hear budget requests from department heads, this evening.

 

  

4-H OFFERING PHOTO OPPORTUNITY        11/7/17

 

The Sevier County 4-H Teen Leaders will be providing an opportunity for the public to have their picture taken to use as a Christmas card or whatever they choose. There will be three background options available; you can choose from a Christmas scene or your choice of two fall background settings. All pictures will be taken inside so come rain or shine.

 

The cost will be $15 for one background and five pictures will be sent to your email. Call the Sevier County Extension Office at 870-584-3013 for more information or to schedule an appointment from 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday, November 18th, in the Adams Building on the De Queen campus of UA Cossatot.

 

 

CHALICE CUPBOARD REPORT FOR OCTOBER      11/7/17

 

During the month of October, the Chalice Cupboard assisted 79 families including 162 adults and 90 children, totaling 252 people.

 

A total of 1,965 pounds of food was added to the pantry shelves, including 1,404 pounds of food that was purchased with donated funds. The First United Methodist Church and the Saint Barbara Catholic Church donated 198 pounds, while individuals donated 317 pounds, along with an anonymous donation of 46 pounds.

 

Individuals living in Sevier County who need food may receive help at the Chalice Cupboard at 315 North 5th Street in De Queen on Tuesday and Wednesday from 2 to 3:15 p.m. Food is given to those requesting assistance once each three-month period of the year.

 

This month, cupboard volunteers are asking for donations of non-perishable items like canned fruit and cereal. All monetary donations will be used to purchase food.

 

 

DE QUEEN PLANNING COMMISSION DENIES ZONE REQUEST       11/6/17

 

On Thursday, November 2nd, the De Queen Planning Commission held a meeting to hear a request for a zone change for some property West of the Highway 41B right of way and North of De Queen and Eastern Railroad right of way.

 

Four commissioners were present to review the application that was presented by Judith Clowers and Nick Walker under the name Penelope Properties. A motion was made to approve the zoning change upon the legal transfer of the property to Penelope Properties, but the motion failed.

 

Commissioners informed Clowers and Walker that they will reconsider the request once they own the property.

 

According to the request, Penelope Properties requested a zone change from R-2 to C-2 so they could establish a mobile home park and mini storage facility on the property.

 

 

DE QUEEN RESIDENT KILLED IN ACCIDENT IN TEXAS        11/6/17

 

On Friday, November 2nd, the Texas Department of Public Safety responded to an accident on State Highway 8, approximately 3 miles north of New Boston.

 

According to the accident report, a 2004 Chevy Malibu that was being driven by 57-year-old Cody Gerald Wayne of Foreman drifted into the southbound lane and into the path of a Chevy Spark. The driver of the Spark took evasive action and swerved to the left into the northbound lane. However, the vehicles collided in the center of highway 8, killing the driver and the passenger in the Spark.

 

The driver of the Spark was 46-year-old Kay Platt of De Queen and the passenger was a 52-year-old male from Ashdown.

 

Wayne was transported to St. Michael's Hospital in Texarkana.

 

A benefit account has been set up at the First State Bank in De Queen for funeral expenses for Platt. For more information, call 870-642-6266.

 

 

STATE TREASURER WAS GUEST SPEAKER AT LITTLE RIVER CHAMBER BANQUET         11/6/17

 

Last Thursday, the Little River County Chamber of Commerce hosted their annual Membership and Awards Banquet in the Barbara Horn Civic Center on the Ashdown campus of UA Cossatot and Arkansas State Treasurer, Dennis Milligan, was the guest speaker.

 

Milligan was elected to the office of Treasurer of State in 2014 and serves as the State's bank and is responsible for the state's investment portfolio, which is worth approximately $3.8 billion dollars.

 

Milligan stated that when he was elected he made three promises to the citizens of Arkansas. He promised to increase the state's investment earnings, to not take any gifts and to be transparent concerning the dealings of his office.

 

Milligan also oversees the Arkansas 529 Program, which is a college investment program for Arkansas residents. He said since he took office, the 529 program has seen a $130 million dollar growth in total assets. Milligan has also implemented a financial education program as part of the Arkansas 529 Program.

 

During the awards portion of the banquet, Lacey Hall was named the Foreman Teacher of the Year and Mandi Molock was named the Ashdown Teacher of the Year. Both, Hall and Molock, received a citation from District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught on behalf of the Arkansas House of Representatives.

 

The Renovation Award was presented to Ashdown Eye Care. The New Construction Award was presented to Diamond Bank. The Small Business of the Year Award was presented Jim's Place, but Carol Runs Its. Farm Credit Services of Western Arkansas was named the Large Business of the Year. And the School, Community or Non-profit Organization Award was presented to Maureen Nations on behalf of the Ashdown Public Library.

 

The Clayton Castleman Public Service of the Year Award was presented to Tammy Waters. And, the Steve Pearce Citizen of the Year Award went to Danny Young. 

 

 

ADULT EDUCATION TO HOST NIGHT IN EVENTS AT UA COSSATOT       11/6/17

 

UA Cossatot's Adult Education department will host three open house events in conjunction with Adult Education Arkansas Night In on Tuesday, November 7th and Wednesday, November 8th.

 

On Tuesday, UA Cossatot Adult Education staff and students will share information with the public about the programs that the department offers at the UA Cossatot Murfreesboro Adult Education Center at 301 West Main in Murfreesboro from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.

 

On Wednesday, the Adult Education department will hold an open house at the UA Cossatot De Queen Adult Education Center, across from the main campus from 5 to 7 p.m. and at the UA Cossatot Nashville Adult Education Center at 1558 Highway 371 West at the back of the campus from 5 to 7 p.m.

 

The Adult Education programs include GED preparation, college prep, digital literacy, financial literacy, English as a second language, citizenship prep, career development, career readiness certificate remediation and keyboarding.

 

For more information, contact Jennifer Black at 870-584-1135 or email her at jblack@cccua.edu.

 

 

LOCKESBURG LIONS CLUB ANGEL TREE        11/6/17

 

The Lockesburg Lions Club is currently accepting applications for their annual Angel Tree program in the City of Lockesburg.

 

Lockesburg Lions Club member, Zebbie Launius, reported the club has sponsored the angel tree program since 2009. She said the Lions Club members want to help ensure Lockesburg children have a good Christmas. She said they will put the Angel Tree up at the Bank of Lockesburg on Friday, November 24th.

 

Launius said the angel tree program is for children 17 and younger and parents or guardians may pick up an application at the Bank of Lockesburg, the Lockesburg City Hall, the Lockesburg Post Office, Nadine's Cafe and the Lockesburg Grocery. She said applications will need to be returned by November 17th to the Bank of Lockesburg.

 

Launius stated families can select an angel together and teach their children to help others.

 

If you have any questions, contact the Bank of Lockesburg at 870-289-4071.

 

 

CITY OF HORATIO TO SPONSOR WORLD WAR I MEMORIAL TREE        11/6/17

 

The Arkansas World War I Centennial Commemoration Committee and the Arkansas Forestry Commission have approved an application from the City of Horatio to sponsor a World War I Memorial Tree, which will be located at the Horatio Cemetery.

 

The Committee and Commission are seeking to place a World War I Memorial Tree in each of Arkansas' 75 counties before the centennial observance of the Great War concludes at the end of 2018.

 

Through the program, the Arkansas Forestry Commission will donate a two-year-old willow oak to an organization in each county that will plant the tree in a public location and see that it is cared for.

 

The Committee is urging partnerships of local governments, Scout troops, American Legion posts, public libraries and others to sponsor and plant a memorial tree in a public park, on a courthouse square or at another appropriate location.

 

To serve as a partner for placement of a World War I Memorial Tree, complete an application at www.wwiarkansas.com/wwi-memorial-trees. The trees are available on a first-come, first-served basis, with one set aside for each county.

 

 

UA COSSATOT HONORS ERNESTO ECHEVARRIA AS 2017 OUTSTANDING ALUM AND EDUARDO MEDINA IS THE 2017 ACADEMIC ALL-STAR     11/6/17


An award ceremony was held at the annual Arkansas Community Colleges conference at Little Rock Marriott. Each community college in Arkansas selects one alum and one current student to honor.


Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson opened the ceremony with a keynote address about the new higher education performance model.


Ernesto Echevarria, a California native, moved to De Queen, Arkansas in 1997. At the age of 20, he began his career in law enforcement as a correctional officer with the Sevier County Sheriff’s Office.


Shortly after being hired, he decided to further his education by enrolling with UA Cossatot. He graduated with an Associates of Applied Science degree in 2009.


Echevarria is now a trooper with the Arkansas State Police. In addition to being in law enforcement, he is a volunteer firefighter for the Gillham Fire Department. He also assists with fundraisers and participates in community events.


Eduardo Medina, of Wickes, Arkansas, is a current UA Cossatot student attending on the De Queen Campus. While studying Agriculture Business, he also serves as a UA Cossatot Student Ambassador and as President of the Collegiate FFA UA Cossatot Chapter. He is also an active member of UA Cossatot’s Phi Theta Kappa and Student Diversity Association.


In the spring, Medina will transfer to Arkansas Tech University to pursue a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture Business with an Animal Science Concentration. He dreams of improving agricultural practices across the state and around the country.


UA Cossatot Chancellor Steve Cole said, “Since the inception of the Arkansas Community Colleges organization, we have always wanted our focus to be on the two-year college student and how they are integral in developing our state economically.”


“Eduardo Medina is the future of Arkansas. His academic prowess will ensure that Arkansas agriculture will be better as that is where he will make his mark once he leaves UA Cossatot.”

 

 

DE QUEEN HIGH SCHOOL DRAMA CLASS TO PRESENT PLAYS     11/6/17

 

Mrs. Sandra Baker's 1st period drama class will be performing "Rejection! or, Will Date for Food” in the De Queen High School Auditorium Thursday, November 9th, at 10:30AM.  In this play, the teenager’s parents threaten to stop feeding them if they don’t go to prom so they are forced to ask out as many people as possible until they find a date.  Admission is free.

 

 

Back row L-R:  Danyelle Hall, Itzel Bautista, Cianna Caballero and Wilson Avelar.

Front row L-R:  Ashley Campos, Noelea Gutierrez, Danny Osura and Eduardo Benitez.

Not pictured:  Deja Bell, Belitha Helson and Gabby Lemuz.

After the first play, the 7th period drama class will perform “The Internet is a Distract–Oh, Look a Kitten!”  In this play, the main character played by, Jennifer Rogers, has 20 minutes to finish her paper on The Great Gatsby but has to contend with Internet distractions to meet her deadline.

Back row L-R: Eruby Rodriguez, Reana Roberson, Jennifer Rogers, Giovanni Huesca, Maria Jimenez and Tate Hargrove.
Front row L-R: Jamile Navarrete, Bailey Branson, Lissette Hernandez, Aracely Hernandez and Jioi Sierra

 

 

  

COUNTY ANNOUNCES WINTER HOURS FOR SEVIER COUNTY SOLID WASTE DEPARTMENT        11/3/17

 

Sevier County Judge Greg Ray announced Sunday marks the end of Daylight Savings Time in Arkansas and the Sevier County Solid Waste Satellite Stations will observe a change in hours of operations on Thursday afternoons.

 

Ray said the satellite stations will be open on Thursday from noon to 5 p.m. and will continue to be open on Tuesday mornings from 7 a.m. to noon and on Saturdays from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

 

Ray said the Sevier County landfill is open Monday through Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

 

 

DEPARTMENT OF HIGHER ED APPROVES NEW FUNDING FORMULA       11/3/17

 

Come July, Arkansas will fund its public colleges and universities using a new method. The new method will focus on students progressing and completing certificate and degree programs.

 

In the past, funding was based largely on enrollment and as been in place since 2005. Schools that experienced enrollment booms didn’t receive any extra money, and those that saw decreases in their student populations never lost any state funding.

 

As a part of the state’s master plan, the state’s higher education leaders took a close look at the funding method and started retooling the method to align it closely with the state’s goals of increasing the percentage of adults with high-demand certificates and degrees.

 

Alisha Lewis of the Arkansas Department of Higher Education said the new funding method is based on student success and has three goals: efficiency, effectiveness and affordability. She said under these goals are metrics, which include the number of credentials, time to degree and students’ success in gateway courses, or required classes that students need to pass before going on to other classes.

 

Following the hold harmless year, schools can earn up to 1-percent in 2019, up to 1.5 percent in 2020 and 2-percent in 2021. Schools can also lose up to 1-percent in 2020, up to 1.5 percent in 2021 and 2-percent the after that.

 

Lewis stated the new funding formula will benefit UA Cossatot because the college has been so innovative in the past.

 

The department of higher ed. is recommending an overall increase of $9.4 million dollars for state colleges and universities. Of the $9.4 million, nearly $7 million would go toward universities and $2.4 million to community colleges.

 

The four universities that would not receive any new funding are Arkansas State University, the University of Arkansas at Fort Smith, the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and the University of Arkansas at Monticello, However, the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville would receive nearly $5 million dollars.

 

Lewis said UA Cossatot and seven other community colleges would receive new funding. The other colleges include: College of the Ouachitas, North Arkansas College, and the University of Arkansas Community College at Hope and Arkansas State University System’s two-year campuses in Beebe, Mountain Home, West Memphis and Newport.

 

Lewis said the new funding recommendations will now go to the campuses, Governor Asa Hutchinson and the General Assembly.

 

 

AMERICAN LEGION POST 54 RAISING FUNDS FOR NEW ROOF ON LEGION HUT        11/3/17

 

American Legion Post 54 is currently selling tickets for a chance to win a Ruger American rifle with a Vortex scope and a limited edition pink Yeti cooler. The proceeds from the fundraisers will be used to repair the roof on the Legion Hut building in De Queen.

 

Tickets for the rifle are $20 each or six for $100 and they are only selling 400 tickets. The day after they sell the last ticket, the winner will be drawn on the Morning Brew Show on KDQN.

 

According to the Post Commander, Jessie Horton, they have about 200 tickets left to sell. She said they are also selling tickets on a limited edition pink Yeti cooler. Tickets are one for $5 or five for $20.

 

For more information or to purchase a ticket, call 870-584-8329, 360-880-8910 or 870-584-8034.

 

  

FIRST SOUTHERN BAPTIST CHURCH OF CROSSROADS REVIVAL STARTS SUNDAY        11/3/17

 

The First Southern Baptist Church of Crossroads will be holding revival services this Sunday through Wednesday at 6 p.m. each evening.

 

Sunday morning, Larry Sherman of Nashville will bring the message at 11 a.m. Sunday night, Don Jones of Nashville will preach at 6 p.m. David Blase of Dierks will preach Monday night. Jerry Hill of Horatio will preach Tuesday night and Butch Riddle of Ashdown will preach Wednesday night.

 

First Southern Baptist Church of Crossroads pastor Roy Conatser reported everyone is invited and the church will be serving desserts and drinks after the services each night.

 

The church is located at 140 Highway 41 North in Winthrop.

 

 

UA COSSATOT STAFF GRADUATE FROM ACC LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE      11/3/17

 

Two UA Cossatot staff members, Ashley Aylett and Dr. Laura Riddle, graduated from the Arkansas Community College Leadership Institute.

 

The graduation ceremony was held at the annual Arkansas Community colleges conference in Little Rock. The institute is a leadership training opportunity for community colleges around the state. Leadership at each college selects faculty and staff to be prepared to take leadership roles at their colleges.

 

Speakers, who are experts in their fields, presented valuable information to the class regarding human resource law, legislative process concerning higher education, budget and appropriations, as well as skills necessary for successful leadership in higher education.

 

UA Cossatot Chancellor Dr. Steve Cole said one of the most valuable resources at Cossatot is the faculty and staff. He said the college invests in the training of the faculty and staff, because they will help the college move forward in a positive direction.

 

The institute consists of four intensive 3-day meetings at college campuses across the state. College leaders witness the legislative process in Little Rock in February.

 

Aylett said building relationships and making connections with peer educators was an invaluable experience. She said they also learned how other institutions handle similar situations.

 

The 2016-2017 class is the ninth group of college leaders to go through the institute.

 

Dr. Riddle said it's always good to meet leaders from other institutions and discover the triumphs and obstacles that all educators face in higher education.

 

 

CONSUMER ALERT: LEMON LAW SWEET NOT SOUR       11/3/17

 

Consumers may have an issue with their new car and take it to the dealership for repairs, but on occasion the problem persists. Any recurring problem, including defects that impair the use, value or safety of the vehicle could deem the vehicle a lemon. Consumer's have the right to request a refund or replacement of the vehicle through the Lemon Law dispute resolution process.

 

Arkansas' Lemon Law provides some security to the often unpredictable vehicle retail world. The vehicle's Quality Assurance Period extends for two years from the date of original delivery or the first 24,000 miles of operation, whichever is longer.

 

Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge offered the following tips to consumers who notice issues after purchasing a new vehicle.

 

She said read the Lemon Law Handbook that the car dealer provides at the time of purchase. Report problems to the dealer or manufacturer immediately and take your vehicle to the dealer for evaluation. Keep your repair receipts and a complete record of contacts with the dealer or manufacturer. And, use the form letters in the Lemon Law Handbook to send a demand letter to the manufacturer, along with a copy of the Independent Dispute Settlement Program.

 

Arkansas' Lemon Law does not cover mopeds, motorcycles, the living quarters of motor homes or most vehicles weighing more than 13,000 pounds. The law also does not cover vehicles that have been substantially altered after its initial sale from the dealer.

 

 

 

Fifth Grade Class Journeys to Alaska    11/03

Mrs. Partain’s fifth grade class at De Queen Elementary recently traveled via technology all the way to Alaska. Tim and Jan Manasco traveled 10,527 miles by car through 12 states and three Canadian provinces over 29 days. Tim is retired from Weyerhauser and Jan is a retired teacher who took the time on their vacation to contact the students every day. They shared what they saw from state to state including landmarks and animals. They described the weather changes they experienced and even shared the different types of foods they ate.

Mrs. Partain’s students wrote in their journals each day about what they had learned. Using Google Earth, the students were able to follow along with the Manascos on their trip. It was an opportunity for the students to view and hear about places they might not otherwise ever see.

After the Manascos returned home, they visited Mrs. Partain’s class. They showed the students a Power Point presentation of their trip. The students enjoyed talking to them about their journey. The Manascos brought each student a postcard and a souvenir to remember their trip to Alaska.

 

 

 

 

 

 

COMMUNITIES OF GRANNIS AND WICKES HOLDING A ONE 4 ALL BENEFIT THIS SATURDAY         11/2/17

 

Members of the Grannis and Wickes communities are hosting three benefits this Saturday to help three families who lost their homes to fire.

 

Mary Ferguson said the One 4 All benefit will begin with a 5K colorful run/walk. She said there is no pre-registration, but runners can sign up beginning at 8 a.m. and the race will start at 9. Ferguson said the race will begin at the Remodeled Church and go down Frachiseur Road.

 

Ferguson said a 4D barrel race will follow the colorful run at 12:30 at the Grannis Trail Riders Arena. She said they will also be selling crockpot dinners for $5 a bowl.

 

The community will then hold an All 4 One chicken dinner and auction in the Wickes Elementary cafeteria. Ferguson said they'll start serving chicken dinners at 4 p.m. and the auction will begin at 6.

 

Ferguson explained the community has about five benefits a year to help families who are in need. She said this time they are helping three families who lost their homes to fire.

 

Proceeds from Saturday's All 4 One benefit will help Carmen and Tonya Olade, Branson and Kylie Provence and Gary and Sherry Flournoy.  

 

 

HOWARD COUNTY RELAY FOR LIFE - HUNTING FOR A CURE 5K       11/2/17

 

Howard County Relay for Life will hold their annual Hunting for a Cure 5K run/walk in the Dierks City Park this Saturday. Registration begins at 7:30 a.m. and the race begins at 8.

 

Ruth Steely of the Howard County Relay for Life stated the committee was excited to hold the event in Dierks for the first time. She said they want everyone in the county to get involved in the fight against cancer.

 

Steely said just about every life in America has been touched by cancer and everyone can help find a cure by participating in events like the Hunting for a Cure 5K.

 

Steely said due to research that has been funded through the American Cancer Society, doctors are finding ways to slow cancer down and they're looking for ways to prevent it.

 

Steely said they would also like to get some Relay for Life teams started in the Dierks area.

 

For more information about the Hunting for a Cure 5K or the Howard County Relay for Life, call 870-557-1046 or 870-845-7062.

 

 

NATURAL GAS PRICES ON THE RISE        11/2/17

 

Arkansas' natural-gas utilities will raise their rates due to the cost of acquiring natural gas.

 

CenterPoint Energy, Black Hills Energy and Arkansas Oklahoma Gas filed their winter rates with the Arkansas Public Service Commission in October and the new rates will take effect today and end on March 31st.

 

The utilities are allowed to pass along their gas supply rate, which is basically the cost of acquiring natural gas, to customers, however they are not allowed to make a profit.

 

According to the commission, the residential bill for CenterPoint, which is the largest gas utility company in Arkansas with about 413,000 customers, will rise 8.73 percent compared to November of last year.

 

That means a CenterPoint customer with a $100 monthly bill last November will have a bill of $108.73 beginning with this month's bill, if they have the same usage amount.

 

Black Hills’ customers in northern Arkansas will see a 5.56 percent increase in monthly bills and Arkansas Oklahoma Gas' customers in the Fort Smith area will see a 1.97 percent increase.

 

Not all of the rate increase is attributed to natural-gas prices. Part of the increase is for an energy efficiency surcharge that the commission also approved. The actual cost of natural gas has dropped about 10 percent from November last year to this year.

 

The National Weather Service is projecting higher than average temperatures this winter, along with drier and warmer conditions across the South.

 

 

HUSQVARNA STARTS CONSTRUCTION OF NEW WAREHOUSE IN NASHVILLE          11/2/17

 

Husqvarna Group is expanding its operations in Nashville with the construction of a new 350,000-square-foot warehouse facility. Project is expected to be completed by the end of 2018.

 

The facility will serve primarily as a warehouse, staging and storage building and will be located adjacent to the current manufacturing facilities where they manufacture chainsaws, trimmers, blowers, pole saws and hedge trimmers for Husqvarna, Poulan Pro, Jonsered, McCulloch and Weed Eater brands.

 

Company officials stated the new distribution center will significantly impact the company's operational efficiencies by localizing distribution operations and automating the transfer of finished product from the assembly line to the warehouse.

 

Once the new facility is operational, the company's current warehouse operations in De Queen and Shreveport will be consolidated into the new facility. The new warehouse will result in the addition of several full-time positions, and De Queen and Shreveport employees will be offered employment in the Nashville facility.

 

 

SWAR POLICE DEPARTMENT WARNS RESIDENTS ABOUT POSSIBLE SKIMMERS BEING USED IN THE AREA       11/2/17

 

The Texarkana Police Department reported some men were arrested Wednesday in another jurisdiction with credit card skimmers in their possession.  Authorities reported that based upon the evidence that the arresting officers found, they felt the men were traveling to the Texarkana area so they could deploy the skimmers.

 

KDQN wants to inform the public that the local police departments have not reported the use of skimmers in the area at this time, but consumers are encouraged to be cautious when using a debit or credit card at area gas stations.

 

Skimmers are typically attached to credit card readers in an attempt to capture your credit or debit card information when you put your card into the reader. You should always check the machine before you scan your credit or debit card, at gas pumps, Redbox, and ATMs.

 

Authorities recommend you check to see if the reader itself is loose or appears to have been tampered with in some way. Check to see if the security seal has been broken, which may indicate that an internal skimmer that you can't see has been installed. Authorities say some skimmers are now using Bluetooth technology to transmit your information back to criminals who are waiting close by with a receiver. To check for this type of skimmer, turn on your phone's Bluetooth and if it tries to connect with a device that as a name of random letters and numbers, there might be a skimming device within range nearby.

 

Authorities are asking consumers to report anything that seems odd or out of place. They say it's better to err on the side of caution.   

 

 

SAFETY BABY SHOWER PRESENTED BY THE SEVIER COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT         11/2/17

 

If you are a mother to be and you would like to know how to protect your baby. Then you should attend the Safety Baby Shower on Thursday, November 16th at 5 p.m. at the Sevier County Health Unit on North Fourth Street in De Queen. The shower is open to any pregnant woman or postpartum woman up to a year after the birth of their baby.

 

Space is limited, so call 870-642-2535 to make your reservation.

 

The shower will include education on home safety, safe sleep, shaken baby syndrome and abusive head trauma, and child passenger safety in a festive, shower-themed atmosphere, complete with refreshments, decorations, games and prizes. Shower gifts will include various home safety products, instructional DVDs on infant crying and shaken baby syndrome and convertible child safety seats. Participants will meet with a trained Child Passenger Safety technician to receive the child safety seat and individual training on how to properly install and use the car seat.

 

Fathers to be and grandparents are also invited to attend. And, Spanish interpretation will be available.

 

The Safety Baby Shower is presented in partnership with the Sevier County Health Unit, the Sevier County Coalition and many community partners. For more information, you can visit the Sevier County Coalition or the Sevier County Health's Unit's Facebook pages.

 

 

INSTRUCTORS NEED MORE DETAILS           11/1/17

 

Arkansas concealed handgun instructors say they need more details on how to prepare for a new state law that allows guns on college campuses, government buildings and some bars for those who undergo additional training.

 

The Arkansas State Police is currently gathering public comments on the rules and training guidelines through November 10th.

 

Some instructors say they need more flexibility on the requirement that the additional training include six hours of classroom instruction and two hours at the gun range. They say the time may need to be altered depending on the size and experience of the concealed handgun class.

 

Arkansas has about 225,000 concealed handgun license holders and about 1,000 instructors. Under the new law, instructors will be required to offer both training for both the regular licenses and the enhanced licenses. They also must pass a test in order to be an instructor.

 

Instructors report they are already seeing a large amount of interest from people who want to undergo the additional training for the enhanced licenses.

 

 

APPLICANTS SUING ARKANSAS MEDICAL MARIJUANA COMMISSION        11/1/17

 

Applicants seeking to open medical marijuana businesses in Arkansas are suing the commission that is overseeing the proposals.

 

The lawsuits were filed last week and placed under seal in Pulaski County. They allege the Arkansas Medical Marijuana Commission wrongly assessed hundreds of applications last month when it rejected bids for failing to meet minimum requirements.

 

Attorney Alex Gray said his firm prepared the complaints after prospective entrepreneurs received rejection letters from the state.

 

The lawsuits allege the applicants submitted their proposals for a licensed cultivation center and dispensary several days before the September deadline, so they would have time to identify and correct any errors.

 

The lawsuits say the commission found an error with one of the applications, and the applicant resubmitted their proposal after collecting the missing material.

 

The applicants said they were told their bids were complete, but were then told after the deadline that they were still missing materials.

 

The lawsuits seek a temporary restraining order that would force the commission to include the plaintiff's applications when the commissioners begin their final scoring review.

 

 

DO YOU KNOW HOW TO DIG FOR DIAMONDS?        11/1/17

 

Waymon Cox is a park interpreter at the Crater of Diamonds State Park and he says knowing how to dig can increase our chances of finding a diamond.

 

According to Cox, the park’s diamond search area is plowed periodically to loosen the dirt. When it rains, water exposes heavier gravel at the surface while washing down loose soil and smaller rocks and minerals. He said diamonds are heavy for their size and are sometimes found on top of the ground after it rains. However, most diamonds end up deposited with small, heavy gravel in trenches and ditches throughout the field.

 

Cox said by using a small hand shovel, you can take advantage of recent erosion by searching for diamonds just below the surface. He said you should scrape a thin layer of soil from an area where water has washed down and turn it over. You should then spread the dirt with the shovel blade to look for gravel. Cox said due to high amounts of iron at the park, heavy rocks and minerals are usually red or brown. He said diamonds are also heavy for their size and may be found near these colorful rocks and minerals.

 

Cox said in areas where more water collects, you should dig a little deeper. He said during a hard rain, water washes through the search area faster and collects more material. He said when water slows down or spreads out over flat areas, thus dropping heavy rocks and minerals first and covers them with layers of fine sand and silt.

 

Cox said to find these hidden gravel caches, you should look for sand on the surface and dig a few inches with a shovel, and listen for the blade of scrape against rocks. He said then you should scoop the gravel from these areas and sift it to search for diamonds.

 

Cox said the park has specific rules for digging holes deeper than four feet, and visitors who dig holes of any depth must refill them each day. For more information about digging and diamond searching in general, just ask for a list of diamond mining rules and regulations at the park.

 

For more information, call the park at 870-285-3113.

 

 

ENROLLMENT BEGINS TODAY FOR ARKANSAS HEALTH INSURANCE MARKETPLACE       11/1/17

 

Today is the first day of open enrollment for 2018 health-care coverage through the Arkansas Health Insurance Marketplace. Despite talk in Washington, D.C., about repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act, the program is still open for business and people who are eligible can sign up for or renew coverage from now through December 15th.

 

Bruce Donaldson with My Arkansas Insurance, which manages the state marketplace, says amid the confusion, his group is working hard to get the message out that enrollment season is here.

 

He says some changes for 2018 are worth noting. The enrollment period has been cut in half, and President Donald Trump has eliminated the federal cost-sharing subsidy that paid some of the out-of-pocket costs for low-income people. He adds the individual mandate is still in effect, so everyone must have health coverage or pay a fine to the IRS at tax time.

 

Donaldson says he and his insurance navigators have already begun fielding questions about next year's plan.

 

He says even if you're happy with your insurance plan, it's a good idea to go online and see what else is available for 2018.

 

He adds My Arkansas Insurance is operating an information hotline during the enrollment period. Call Monday through Friday during normal business hours at 844-355-3382.

 

 

FORMAL CHARGES FILED IN ANIMAL CRUELTY CASE         11/1/17

 

Animal cruelty charges have been formally filed in Miller County against three people accused of mistreating a goat and several dogs.

 

Charges have been filed felony and misdemeanor charges against 25-year-old William Lake Evans, misdemeanor charges against 24-year-old Victoria Anderson and 21-year-old Tyler Green. All three were arrested last month.

 

Green and Anderson have been released on $15,000 bonds, but Evans who was arrested in De Queen is being held in the Miller County jail for parole violations.

 

According to the original arrest record, animal control officers visited a house on Laurel Street on September 18th after they received a call about some animals not having food or water.

 

Officials left a notice to contact them, but when they weren’t contacted, they returned to the house on September 21st and noticed some more animals inside the house, which did not have water service. The next day, officials returned to the house and rescued a goat and several dogs.

 

Green and Anderson allegedly informed an animal control officer that they knew the animals were in poor condition, but didn’t think it was their problem since the animals belonged to Evans.

 

Evans allegedly claimed he knew the animals were in need of care, but he was treating the animals with remedies that he found on the internet because he couldn’t afford a vet and that he was planning to move them to another location.

 

If convicted of misdemeanor animal cruelty the three can be fined up to $1,000, sentenced to one-year in jail and/or community service. The felony animal cruelty charge is punishable by up to six years in prison and a fine up to $10,000.

 

 

RISK OF CARBON MONOXIDE POISONING INCREASES WITH COOLER TEMPERATURES        10/31/17

 

With cooler temperatures, the risks of carbon monoxide poisoning increases as families begin to heat their homes.

 

De Queen Fire Chief Dennis Pruitt reported the fire department was called out to a home earlier this month and some of the residents were suffering from carbon monoxide poisoning and had to be taken to a medical facility.

 

Pruitt said the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning can be similar to other illnesses including the flu. People suffering from carbon monoxide poisoning may have a headache, experience dizziness, be fatigued, and they may be nauseous or vomiting. He said exposure can also lead to confusion, cause someone to pass out, and unfortunately death.

 

Pruitt said carbon monoxide comes from heating sources that use a carbon-based fuel, including natural gas and propane, wood-burning fireplaces and vehicle exhaust.

 

Pruitt recommended that people have their heating sources serviced and cleaned before they start using them and put carbon monoxide detectors in their homes.

 

 

LEOPARDS TRYING TO LOCK UP PLAYOFF SPOT THIS FRIDAY NIGHT        10/31/17

 

Friday night is senior night for the De Queen High School football team, cheerleaders and band and for the first time since joining the 5A-South conference the Leopards can earn a playoff spot.

 

De Queen Booster Club member Blair Harp informed KDQN that this season as been different and she invited the community to attend Friday's game. She also suggested decorating your car, yards and business windows.

 

According to the Arkansas Activities Association, if De Queen defeats White Hall, they'll be the number three seed from the 5A-South conference. However, if they lose Friday and Camden Fairview loses to Watson Chapel, there is a three-way tie for third place. And, since De Queen defeated Camden Fairview, Camden defeated White Hall and if White Hall defeats De Queen, the AAA will have a perfect triangle and they will go to the tie-breakers.

 

Currently, Camden Fairview leads in the 13-point rule with 45 points, while De Queen has 42 and White Hall has 36.

 

If White Hall defeats De Queen by six points or more, De Queen will be out of the playoffs. If White Hall defeats De Queen by five points or less, White Hall is out of the playoffs.

 

So if the Leopards win, they’re in.

 

 

DOMTAR CENTER FOR WORKFORCE EXCELLENCE NAMED      10/31/17

 

UA Cossatot has commemorated over one million dollars of educational support and over 15 years of partnership with Domtar Mill in Ashdown by renaming the testing center on the Little River campus to the Domtar Center for Workforce Excellence.

 

The workforce center in Ashdown has been the site of extensive industry training and testing that was financed largely by the generosity of Domtar industries.

 

UA Cossatot hosted a renaming reception on its Ashdown campus on Friday, October 27th to unveil signage and to offer an opportunity for local and state officials, Domtar and UA Cossatot leadership to meet.

 

In attendance was University of Arkansas System President Don Bobbit who said it's partnerships like these that will be vital to the well-being of higher education in the future.

 

Domtar General Manager Bob Grygotis shared that the investment of time and money into UA Cossatot has been a huge factor in the improvement and continual growth of the workforce benefiting all of Little River County, not just Domtar.

 

Also in attendance were UA Cossatot Chancellor Steve Cole, and UA Cossatot staff, Susan Bobbitt, Little River County Judge Mike Cranford, Domtar Manager of Communications and Government Relations Tammy Waters, Domtar Operations Manager Steve Smith, Domtar Human Resource Manager Mark Campbell, Domtar Training and Development Manager Jimmy Ivers, Domtar Safety Manager Jason Young, Senator Barbara Horn, Arkansas Community Colleges Director of the Center of Workforce Kyla Waters and Ashdown School Superintendent Jason Sanders.

 

 

SEVIER COUNTY HUMANE SOCIETY HOLDING A FUNDRAISER AND SPAY AND NEUTER CLINIC IN NOVEMBER       10/31/17

 

The Sevier County Humane Society will hold a fundraiser in November to raise operating funds, as well as their fourth spay and neuter clinic of the year.       

 

Society treasurer, Martha Fines reported the spay and neuter clinic is scheduled for November 14th, 15th, and 16th at the society's building across from the Herman Dierks Park and behind the Sevier County Co-op Station. She said the cost is $65 for dogs and $40 for cats.

 

Fines said they are also selling raffle tickets for $20 each. She said they will be selling tickets during the spay and neuter clinic or you can call her at 870-584-9096 to purchase a ticket.

 

Society President Juanelle Gage reported the fundraiser will help provide the society with some operating funds and possibly help build a small shelter in the future.

 

The Sevier County Humane Society plans to conduct four spay and neuter clinics in 2018. The first clinic is scheduled for February. 

 

 

SEVIER COUNTY LIBRARY SNIPPETS        10/31/17

 

The Sevier County Library System is once again partnering with the Arkansas Education Television Network for the Mister Rogers' Neighborhood Sweater Drive for the month of November.

 

Clifford the Big Red Dog will be at the De Queen library on Wednesday at 4 p.m. to kickoff the sweater drive. There's also going to be a story time and a coloring contest for ages 4 to 6, 7 to 8 and 9 to 10.

 

Head Librarian Johnye Fisher also announced the De Queen Library is conducting it's annual Food for Fines program November 1st through the 30th. She said you can bring any nonperishable food item to the library for a $1 dollar reduction per item on existing overdue fines. She said food will be accepted for fines on returned library items only, and not the replacement fees for lost or damaged items.

 

Fisher said the Horatio Library will spotlight various juvenile authors on the subject of Thanksgiving during the month of November.

 

The Horatio Library also offers dominoes on Thursdays at 10 a.m. and they are looking for chess players.

 

Fisher reported the Lockesburg Library's Book Club will meet on Saturday, November 18th at 10 a.m. They are currently reading "A Land More Kind Than Home" by Wiley Cash. On Thursday, November 16th, the Lockesburg Library will host a story time for children. They'll be reading the book, "Sometimes it's the Turkey, sometimes it's the Feathers."

 

Fisher said the Gillham Library has received some Christian Fiction Love Inspired Suspense books, as well as, the "One-eyed Jacks" series by Cindy Gerard. The library also hosts adult coloring every Thursday afternoon.

 

 

COMMENT PERIOD OPEN ON HIGHER SPEED LIMITS       10/31/17

 

Arkansas opened a 45-day comment period to get the opinions of citizens about raising the speed limit in the state.

 

Earlier this year the legislator approved raising the speed limit on the interstate to 75 miles per hour. The legislation also stated motorists should be allowed to go faster on other highways if engineering studies showed it could be done safely.

 

Eleven other states have raised their speed limits to 75 miles per hour, while Texas and six other states have limits of 80 or higher. A spokesperson with ARDot said those states have long stretches of straight, flat roads through unpopulated areas. He said Arkansas is hilly, with plenty of truck traffic.

 

According to a study by ARDot, 85 percent of drivers travel at 71 miles per hour or less in 70 miles per hour speed zones.

 

If the highway commission approves all elements of the speed limit plan, limits on urban interstates and rural multi-lane highways would climb to 65 miles per hour in places, while other rural highways could see 60 miles per hour speed limits.

 

 

CONSUMER ALERT: AVOIDING HALLOWEEN SCARES      10/30/17

 

The De Queen Police Department, the Ashdown Police Department, the Sevier County Sheriff's Office and the Little River County Sheriff's Office is promoting Halloween safety along with Attorney General Leslie Rutledge.

 

Rutledge said children wait all year for the day that they can get dressed up in their favorite costume and stock up on candy. She said Halloween should be a fun and exciting night for everyone, but adults should remember to take the necessary steps to keep their children safe.

 

Rutledge released the following tips to parents to help them avoid unexpected and unnecessary Halloween scares: She said you should select flame-resistant materials, masks, beards and wigs. She said you should also avoid baggy sleeves and billowing skirts. Rutledge said choose costumes with light or bright colors whenever possible or trim darker costumes with reflective tape. She said to avoid tripping and falling, parents should choose costumes that fit and do not drag the ground. She said make sure masks fit securely and have adequate ventilation and masks that provide unobstructed views. She said swords, knives and other accessories should be made of soft and flexible materials.

 

Rutledge said parents should only take children to familiar neighborhoods and only approach homes with outside lighting. Parents should also remind their children of everyday safety rules, such as not getting into cars or talking to strangers, and looking both ways before crossing streets. Parents should always accompany their children, encourage them to wait until they get home to eat their candy and parents should throw away any treats that are not commercially wrapped or appear to have been tampered with.

 

Rutledge also reminds drivers to keep an eye out for children who may be darting out from between parked cars or walking on roadways, curbs or streets.

 

For more information or tips to avoid scams and other consumer-related issues, contact the Attorney General's office at 1-800-482-8982 or visit the website www.ArkansasAG.gov.

 

 

SEVIER COUNTY TOYS FOR TOTS FUNDRAISER IS FRIDAY        10/30/17

 

The annual Toys for Tots fundraiser is this Friday at the Sevier County fair grounds at 5 p.m. 

 

Toys for Tots committee member Mac McDaniel informed KDQN that they were planning for a big event this year because this is the 25th year for the Toys for Tots program. He said this year's event will feature an auction with Jimmy Ray Gentry and entertainment provided by the Bill Powers Band.

 

McDaniel said the Sevier County Rescue Unit started the program. He said in the beginning, members would purchase used toys that they would repair. Later on, they asked people to donate toys at the annual fundraiser, but now they accept monetary donations and purchase new toys. McDaniel said this is the only fundraiser that the Toys for Tots committee holds each year, although they do receive support from several individuals and organizations.

 

 

McDaniel said they will start accepting applications the Monday following the De Queen/Sevier County Chamber of Commerce parade.

 

Chicken dinner meals are $7 a plate. Donations can be mailed to Toys for Tots, PO Box 884, De Queen, Arkansas 71832.

 

 

DE QUEEN BRANCH OF THE SEVIER COUNTY LIBRARY SYSTEM PARTICIPATING IN THE MISTER ROGERS' NEIGHBORHOOD SWEATER DRIVE          10/30/17

 

The De Queen branch of the Sevier County Library is partnering with the Arkansas Educational Television Network to collect coats, sweaters, gloves and toboggans during the Mister Rogers' Neighborhood Sweater Drive November 1st through the 30th.

 

AETN's Katie Culpepper stated this is the fourth year that AETN has held the statewide sweater drive. She said 32 libraries participated last year. She said the De Queen Library collected over 350 items that were distributed to those in need through the De Queen School District and the Sevier County Housing Authority.

 

Culpepper said Mister Rogers started the sweater drive before he ended his show, "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood." She said AETN was proud to work with their partners across the state to carry on Fred Rogers' legacy through the Mister Rogers' Neighborhood Sweater Drive.

 

Members of the community are asked to donate new or gently worn sweaters at the De Queen Library and the event will kick-off this Wednesday at 4 p.m. when Clifford the Big Red Dog visits the library. Culpepper said everyone is invited to have their picture taken with Clifford.

 

Head Librarian Johnye Fisher also announced the library will be holding its annual Food for Fines program during the month of November. She said patrons can bring any nonperishable food item to the library for a $1 dollar reduction per item on their existing overdue fines.  Fisher said the library will be accepting food items for fines on returned library material only and not for the replacement cost for lost or damaged items.

 

 

LEGISLATIVE UPDATE         10/30/17

 

Veterans living and working in Arkansas have a $4.5 to $5 billion dollar impact on the state's economy. And, according to District Four Representative DeAnn Vaught, the state is constantly working on ways to make Arkansas a better place for veterans to live. She said one of the major areas that the state has been working on is long-term care for veterans.

 

Last week, members of the Aging, Children and Youth, Legislative and Military Affairs Committee were given a tour of the new veteran's home in North Little Rock.

 

There are eight separate cabins that are called Hero Homes. Each home has 12 individual rooms with private bathrooms. There's a gourmet kitchen, a living area with a fireplace and a table long enough to accommodate all of the residents and the staff.

 

There is one staff person to every three residents and most staff members are either veterans themselves or they have a veteran in their immediate family. 

 

Vaught said legislation was passed for this facility in 2013 after a veteran's home in central Arkansas was closed due to extreme disrepair. That year, the legislature appropriated $7.5 million dollars to match a federal grant.

 

Arkansas currently has two veteran homes and the one in Fayetteville needs some upgrades.

changes coming to Mega Millions    10/27/17

LITTLE ROCK – Tonight’s Mega Millions® drawing is the last under the current version of the national draw game. Starting with Tuesday’s draw, the new and improved Mega Millions will include better odds at winning $1 million -- and starting jackpots will more than double from $15 million to $40 million. (See accompanying chart.)

Additionally, the new Mega Millions® game will feature faster-growing jackpots with minimum $5 million rolls. The ticket price will increase to $2 per play, while the cost of the Megaplier® will remain at an additional $1 per play.

Arkansas Scholarship Lottery Director Bishop Woosley said that lotteries are responding to consumers with these latest changes. “We have a demand for innovation to keep fresh, entertaining lottery games and to deliver the attention-grabbing jackpots,” Woosley said. “We’re excited to deliver the opportunity to create more millionaires and to raise additional proceeds for college scholarships for Arkansas students.”

Future game draws began to gradually decrease on Aug. 18; however, starting tomorrow, players can again purchase up to 20 multi-draws.
 

 

 

ASHDOWN EAST RECEIVES UPGRADE GRANT   10/27/17

 

The Ashdown High School EAST has been awarded a $4850 matching grant by the Upgrade Grant Review Committee.

 

The Upgrade Grants are awarded based on the AHS EAST meeting criteria that is crucial to remain compliant with EAST standards and conforming to the EAST Assurances, the contract between the school and EAST Initiative.

 

The district will match the award by adding $4850. With the grant, EAST Facilitator Alicia Henry will purchase supplies and equipment for the AHS EAST Program.

 

Henry said, “I have several groups of students who are working on awesome EAST projects. I am very grateful to the EAST Initiative for this upgrade grant because it has allowed me to order equipment needed for these students to work on their projects.”

 

Henry has been able to order three complete workstation computers and three raspberry pi kits (programmable micro computers) that several students will be able to incorporate into their EAST projects.

 

 

DE QUEEN MEDICAL CENTER HOLDS A MEET AND GREET       10/27/17

 

Thursday afternoon, the administration of the De Queen Medical Center held a meet and greet event and visited with several community leaders.

 

Michael Christianson is the president of empower HMS from the home office in Kansas City, and he is touring the medical facilities that were recently purchased by the company.

 

Christianson stated the company’s mission is great patient care and he assured those in attendance that the hospital is here to stay and will work to improve the medical care in the city of De Queen.

 

Christianson reported the hospital will continue to work with the local physicians to provide excellent patient care. He also announced the interim De Queen Medical Center administrator is the Director of Nurses, Brad Patterson.

 

 

CONSUMER ALERT: STATEWIDE PRESCRIPTION DRUG TAKE BACK IS OCTOBER 28TH         10/27/17

 

Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge is encouraging Arkansans to clean out their medicine cabinets and bring any unused or expired medications to one of the state's more than 100 Prescription Drug Take Back Day drop-off locations from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, October 28th.

 

The Sevier County Drug Take Back Day event will be held at the Sevier County Sheriff's Office from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

 

Rutledge released the following list of medications that will be accepted at these events. The list includes, opioids, such as OxyContin, Stimulants, such as Adderall, Depressants, such as Ativan, other prescription medications, over-the-counter medication, vitamins, pet medicines, medicated ointments and lotions, inhalers, liquid medicines in glass or leak-proof containers and medicine samples.

 

Medications may be returned in the original bottle or in any other container for increased privacy and will be properly destroyed by law enforcement officials.

 

Medicines that are flushed or poured down the drain can end up polluting waters supplies. Many medicines are not removed by wastewater treatment plants or septic systems. Turning over these medications at a Take Back Day event will reduce the risk of accidental poisonings by children, senior adults or pets. It will also reduce the risk of a drug overdose.

 

 

LITTLE RIVER COUNTY LAND O'LIGHTS PAGEANT REGISTRATION IS UNDERWAY        10/27/17

 

The 19th Annual Miss Land O'Lights Pageant is Saturday, November 18th in the Ashdown High School Auditorium and registration is currently underway.

 

Little River County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Fonda Hawthorne reported they will have eight age categories, including Baby Miss 1 to 23 months, Tiny Miss 24 to 35 months, Little Miss 3 to 4 years, Petitie Miss 5 to 7 years, Young Miss 8 to 10 years, Junior Miss 11 to 12 years, Teen Miss 13 to 14 years and Miss Land O'Lights 15 to 18 years. The deadline to enter is November 4th. The entry fee is $35 plus an optional $10 photogenic entrance fee.

 

Hawthorne also stated there is a talent contest for boys and girls, which will be separated into three divisions. The divisions are 5 to 10 years, 11 to 14 years and 15 to 18 years. The entry fee for the talent contest is $25.

 

Hawthorne said in the past, the pageant was just for residents of Little River County. She said this year, the chamber opened the pageant to young ladies from the surrounding counties.

 

Hawthorne said if they have 100 girls enter the pageant, the contestants name will be entered into a drawing for $100.

 

Hawthorne said the chamber will be hosting a Trunk or Treat event Saturday from 5 to 7 p.m. After that event, the chamber will be holding a free movie in the Two Rivers Plaza Pocket Park at 7 p.m.

 

And next Thursday, November 2nd, the chamber will hold their annual Membership and Awards Banquet in the Barbara Horn Civic Center on the Ashdown campus of UA Cossatot. Hawthorne said the doors will open at 5:30 p.m.

 

For more information, contact the Little River County Chamber of Commerce by calling 870-898-2758.

 

 

DE QUEEN/SEVIER COUNTY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE SPONSORING TRICK OR TREATING IN DE QUEEN ON TUESDAY, OCTOBER 31ST       10/27/17

 

The annual De Queen Kindergarten parade of Halloween costumes will be Tuesday, October 31st around the square in downtown De Queen beginning at 9 a.m.

 

The Parkhill Preschool will hold their Halloween parade around school on East Heynecker beginning at 12:45 p.m. and kids 12 and younger can trick or treat around the Sevier County Courthouse square from 5:15 to 6.

 

Businesses, organizations, churches, and individuals are welcome to set up booths throughout the downtown area to pass out candy.

 

 

CENTRAL FIRE DEPARTMENT TO HOST A GUN SAFETY EVENT NOVEMBER 3RD BEFORE THE START OF THE MODERN GUN YOUTH HUNT      10/27/17

 

The Central Fire Department is hosting a hot dog and marshmallow roast and gun safety meeting on Friday, November 3rd at the Central Community Building at 6 p.m.

 

Brettany Lynch said they will be roasting hot dogs and having some fun, while going over some gun safety rules prior to the start of the modern gun youth hunt that starts on Saturday, November 4th. She said the event is not just for young people, but for the whole family.

 

For more information, contact a member of the Central Volunteer Fire Department.

 

 

 

 

HORATIO MAN'S DEATH RULED ACCIDENTAL        10/26/17

 

An 18-year-old Horatio man's death has been ruled accidental by Arkansas State Police Crime Lab.

 

The body was found inside a burning truck on Saturday morning about 4 a.m. on Arkansas Highway 32 in Little River County just east of Ashdown. And according to the results of an autopsy, the cause of death was smoke inhalation.

 

Little River County Sheriff Bobby Walraven reported the pickup appeared to have been hung up on a fence post and the fire apparently was started by a spark that was caused by the spinning tires.

 

Walraven stated it looked like the driver was attempting to turn around and got hung up on a stump and fence post.

 

The victim's family has been notified, but the name will not be released to the public until the DNA test is complete.

 

 

MC DONALD'S DAY OF CHANGE IS FRIDAY        10/26/17

 

The De Queen McDonald's restaurant is participating in the annual Ronald McDonald House Charities of Arkansas Day of Change event Friday morning from 7 to 9 a.m.

 

Owner Celia Montgomery said volunteers from the community will be collecting change in the drive-thru lines from 7 to 9 a.m. She said their six restaurants will be participating including the restaurants in De Queen, Nashville and Hope.

 

Montgomery said they will be collecting spare changed to help parents remain close to their children who are in the hospital. She said the Ronald McDonald Houses provide families with a comfortable place to sleep, dinner every night, free laundry facilities and support from other families in similar situations.

 

Montgomery said the canisters on the counters in McDonald's restaurants are the main source of funding for the Ronald McDonald Houses, but Friday everyone who goes through the drive-thru will have an opportunity to change the lives of ill children and their families for the better.

 

McDonald's is also asking everyone who participates in the Day of Change event to share photos on social media to show how they helped support families at the Ronald McDonald House by tagging @mchcarkansas.

 

 

PERSEVERANCE 5K AT DAISY STATE PARK NOVEMBER 4TH 10/26/17
 

Ryan’s Call Foundation will host the 2nd annual perseverance 5K run on November 4th at Daisy State Park. The event promotes water safety and drowning prevention.

The foundation was established in memory of Ryan Swain who drown while duck hunting on September 7th, 2015. Funds raised will be used to purchase new life jackets to water related facilities, to provide water safety education to schools and other organizations, to fund character and leadership scholarships and to sponsor youth sports programs.

According to event organizers, there will be several family activities, a silent auction and the Arkansas Children’s Hospital will also be fitting and giving out life jackets.

The race is a sanctioned, chip timed event and you can register online at arkansasrunner.com. More information can also be found on Facebook, search for Ryan’s Call Foundation.
 

 

 

UA COSSATOT'S COLLEGIATE FFA CHILI SUPPER IS TODAY        10/26/17

 

UA Cossatot Collegiate FFA President, Eduardo Medina reported the annual FFA Chili Supper and gun raffle is tonight in the Adams Building on the De Queen campus of UA Cossatot at 6:30 p.m.

 

Medina said he's been a member of FFA since high school and he plans to earn a degree in Ag. Business, so he can help bring about change.

 

Cossatot FFA Secretary Rachel Bradshaw said she's going to continue her education at SAU after earning an associates degree at UA Cossatot. Bradshaw says she plans earn a bachelor's degree in Ag. Science so she can help make life easier for farmers.

 

They will start serving chili around 5:30 p.m. and they will start the gun drawing at 6:30. 

 

 

DE QUEEN FIRST ASSEMBLY OF GOD CHURCH TO HOST FALL FAMILY FEST        10/26/17

 

This Saturday, the De Queen First Assembly of God Church will host their annual Fall Family Fest from 3 to 5 p.m. on their church campus at 1440 West Collin Ray Drive.

 

Children's Minister Dan Nemlowill announced they have several activities planned, including inflatables for the kids.

 

For more information, contact the church at 870-584-3435.

 

 

LOCKESBURG QUILT SHOW IS NOVEMBER 11TH        10/26/17

 

The Lockesburg Quilters and Crafters Guild will host their 2017 Autumn Colors Quilt Show on Saturday, November 11th from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the refurbished UA Cossatot Bank of Lockesburg Gymnasium on the Lockesburg campus of UA Cossatot.

 

There will be several quilts on display along with vendors and homemade refreshments.

 

If you would like to enter a quilted item to be displayed, drop the item off at the First Baptist Church on Thursday, November 9th between 6 and 8 p.m. or at the gym on Friday, November 10th between 3 and 6:30 p.m. There is a $3 enter fee for each item.

 

Categories include: hand quilted, appliqué, antique and miscellaneous.

 

Admission to the show is free, however, the guild will accept donations at the show and use the money to help local under privileged children this Christmas. Guests will also be able to vote on their favorite quilt, chat with the quilters and purchase quilted items, supplies and fabric.

 

If you have any questions about entries or if you would like to be a vendor, call 870-287-5178 or 870-784-4388.

 

 

LITTLE RIVER CHAMBER OF COMMERCE ACTIVITIES      10/25/17

 

Little River County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Fonda Hawthorne reported the chamber has several upcoming events for the residents of Little River County.

 

Hawthorne said the chamber will be hosting a Trunk or Treat event this Saturday from 5 to 7 p.m. She said several businesses and individuals will be handing out candy to children in the parking lot behind the Cotton Seed Market.

 

She said the chamber will host a free screening of the movie, "Beauty and the Beast" in the Two Rivers Plaza Pocket Park at 7 p.m.

 

Hawthorne said regular Halloween activities will be held in the City of Ashdown on Tuesday, October 31st.

 

Hawthorne also stated the Little River County Chamber of Commerce banquet is Thursday, November 2nd. She said the doors will open at 5:30 at the Barbara Horn Civic Center on the Ashdown campus of UA Cossatot. Hawthorne said they will have speakers, a silent auction and the chamber will present several awards.

 

For more information, contact the Little River County Chamber of Commerce at 870-898-2758.

 

 

HALLOWEEN ACTIVITIES        10/25/17

 

De Queen/Sevier County Chamber of Commerce President Patrick Massey announced the chamber of commerce is inviting kids 12 and under to Trick or Treat on the square in downtown De Queen at 5:15 p.m. on the courthouse square in De Queen on Tuesday, October 31st. He said area businesses, organizations, churches and individuals are welcome to set up booths throughout the downtown area and pass out candy.

 

The annual De Queen kindergarten parade around the courthouse will be held at 9 a.m. on October 31st. Massey said businesses and organizations can hand out candy at this event, as well.

 

 

ANIMAL ATTRACTIONS AT 2017 STATE FAIR OF LOUISIANA      10/25/17

 

Every year, the State Fair of Louisiana Zoo is one of the top attractions. Established in 1996, the State Fair made the decision to construct a four-acre zoo to display animals at the State Fair for all to enjoy. A 10,000 square foot climate controlled building was constructed with a 25-foot entrance to accommodate the tall giraffes that need to get out of the cold or hot weather. Large pens were also built to provide plenty of space for all of the animals to move around comfortably.

 

Over the years, this exhibit has proven to be very popular, especially with children and families. The zoo and circus animals this year include giraffes, zebras, llamas, goats, camels, tigers, horses, donkeys, zebus, Highland cow, alpacas, Jacob sheep, ducks, geese, turkeys, chickens and others.

 

The State Fair of Louisiana has very high standards for all attractions at the fair and the animal attractions are no exception. A very strict "Animal Exhibit Policy" is in place to assure that all animals on display are healthy and well taken care of. All animals are properly permitted through the USDA and all have current health papers. The State Fair of Louisiana only selects animal attractions that have maintained exceptional standards and records.

 

State Fair of Louisiana President and General Manager, Chris Giordano, said "with the absence of a local zoo in the Shreveport-Bossier area, he felt this may be the only opportunity for some children to experience these types of animals up close.

 

For more information at the State Fair of Louisiana, visit the website www.statefairoflouisiana.com.

 

 

 

111TH STATE FAIR OF LOUISIANA       10/24/17

 

The State Fair of Louisiana announced the attractions, street entertainers and live bands that will be performing during the 111th State Fair of Louisiana.

 

Executive Director of the State Fair of Louisiana, Russell Adams said this year's fair will feature The Pirate's Parrot Show, Johnny Rockett's Cycle Circus, the State Fair Zoo and more.

 

Adams said there will be about 40 bands performing over the 14-days of the Louisiana State Fair along with the Louisiana Rodeo Cowboy Association Finals Rodeo on the weekend of November 4th.

 

Adams said they have over 60 rides and a variety of food vendors.

 

Gate admission is $10 per person, but Adams said there were several discount days.

 

The State Fair of Louisiana is open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day, except Friday and Saturday, it's open until 11 p.m. For more information, visit the website www.statefairoflouisiana.com.

 

 

SINGLE PARENT SCHOLARSHIP FUND OF SEVIER COUNTY PRESENTS SCHOLARSHIPS DURING THEIR 8TH ANNUAL FISH FRY AND FALL AWARDS CEREMONY         10/24/17

 

October 19th, the Single Parent Scholarship Fund of Sevier County held its 8th annual Fish Fry and Fall Awards Ceremony on the De Queen campus of UA Cossatot.

 

Adriane McWhorter was named the BancorpSouth scholar. Anel Cruz Lugo and Kayle Cruz were named Gentry Chevrolet scholars. Ashley Coleman was named the Argenbright scholar. Nicole Jones was named the Rotary scholar. Misty Young and Sandy Chandler were named Arkansas Department of Higher Education scholars.

 

Students also received an additional $100 off their spring tuition from UA Cossatot Chancellor, Dr. Steve Cole.

 

To apply for a single parent scholarship in any county in the state of Arkansas or Bowie County, Texas go to the website www.aspsf.org and click on apply now. 

 

 

Front Row: (Left to right): Patti Boone, SPSF Board Member; Ashley Coleman, Recipient; Anel Cruz Lugo, Recipient; Felicia Jones, Recipient; Kayle Cruz, Recipient; Sandy Chandler, Recipient. Back Row (Left to right): Mac McDaniel, SPSF Vice-Chair; Sevier County Judge Greg Ray, SPSF Board Member; Mary Davis, SPSF Trustee; Jerry Davis,SPSF Chair; J.P. Atkins, SPSF Board Member; Rian Scott, SPSF Board Member; Shauna Turner. SPSF Trustee; Maureen Burrow SPSF Treasurer; Diane Barger, SPSF Board Member; Ceci Bettell, SPSF Board Member; and ZZ Kamruddin, SPSF Board Member.
 

COUNTY 4-H CLUBS REORGANIZING       10/24/17

 

The Sevier County 4-H clubs are reorganizing and seeking new members and leaders.

 

The purpose of these clubs is to give youth ages 5 to 19 an opportunity to participate in the youth development educational program of the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service. Youth in 4-H clubs will learn life skills, enhance leadership skills, and increase their self-esteem while serving in a number of community service projects. Youth in 4-H clubs have an opportunity to compete in a number of competitive activities, attend camps, and earn scholarships for education.

 

The following is a list of the Sevier County 4-H clubs: Chapel Hill, Happy Face, Lakeside, Gillham Tigers, Froglevel Hoppers, Shooting Sports, Teen Leaders, Goin' Showin' and Legacy After School club.

 

The Univeristy of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offers all its Extension and Research programs to all eligible person regardless of race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, age, disability, martial or veteran status, genetic information, or any other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.

 

For more information about meetings, 4-H club membership or program benefits, contact the Sevier County Cooperative Extension Service, which is located in the Adams Building on the De Queen campus of UA Cossatot or call 870-584-3013.

 

 

MOBILE PANTRY TO BRING FOOD TO THOSE IN NEED IN SEVIER COUNTY        10/24/17

 

Harvest Regional Food Bank is returning to Sevier County with its Mobile Pantry. Executive Director of the food bank, Camille Wrinkle said there are several communities in the food bank's rural service area that's not fully served by a local partner agency. She said they provide direct service to these areas to ensure they are receiving the assistance they need.

 

Harvest Regional Food Bank will distribute pantry boxes and USDA commodities from the First United Methodist Church in Horatio on Wednesday, November 15th from 10 a.m. to noon.

 

Volunteers are needed to help load boxes into cars. If you can volunteer, call the food bank at 870-774-1398.

 

Recipients must provide a photo ID, verifying their age and residence in Sevier County. Distribution is limited to one per household and USDA commodities will be available to those who meet the income requirements.

 

Food boxes will include an assortment of canned fruits and vegetables, rice, pasta, fruit juices, spices, and other items. 

 

 

ECONOMIC, EDUCATIONAL GAPS IN ARKANSAS FOR CHILDREN OF COLOR        10/24/17

 

A new report finds significant disparities in public policies for children of color and those in immigrant families when compared with other groups in Arkansas and across the nation.

 

The Annie E. Casey Foundation's 2017 Race for Results report measures key milestones in childhood development across racial and ethnic groups at both the national and state level. Rich Huddleston is the director of Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families and he says Arkansas needs to close the social and economic gap between children of color and other groups now before it widens in another generation.

 

Huddleston says Arkansas has wide racial and ethnic disparities in family incomes, with 76 percent of the state's Hispanic children living in low-income families, compared with 44 percent of non-Hispanic white children. He says the report finds that Hispanic children in Arkansas are more likely to live at or near the poverty line than their peers in any other state.

 

Study co-author Laura Speer says the report pays special attention to the obstacles facing children in immigrant families.

 

She says lawmakers and other public officials need to strengthen policies that make communities more supportive and healthy for families.

 

The report's recommendations include keeping families together and in their communities, helping children meet key developmental milestones and increasing economic opportunities for parents.

 

 

SEVIER COUNTY BURN BAN LIFTED BY COUNTY JUDGE        10/23/17

 

Monday morning, Sevier County Judge Greg Ray announced he was lifting the county's burn ban after most of the country received a little over an inch of rain this weekend. He also stated that if you burn please burn responsibly.

 

Horatio Mayor Borden Neel also announced the City of Horatio will be closed on Tuesday, in memory of Cody Hardaway and to honor the family of Lloyd and Shannon Hardaway.

 

Neel said any emergencies should be directed to Chad Wolcott at 870-582-2059.

 

 

SEVIER COUNTY 4-H TEEN LEADERS HOSTING A HALLOWEEN FESTIVAL THIS SATURDAY         10/23/17

 

The Sevier County 4-H Teen Leader's Club is hosting a Halloween Festival this Saturday at the Sevier County Fair grounds from 6 to 8 p.m. to provide a fun and safe place for young people to have some Halloween fun.

 

Teen Leader Brennen Seymour announced Monday morning tickets for the games are 5-cents each and they will have a photo booth, snack cake walk, sugar cookie decorating contest, a bean bag toss and much more.

 

Concessions will be available. For more information, call the Sevier County Extension Office at 870-584-3013.

 

 

GRANT FUNDS HELP REACH THOUSANDS FOR PROSTATE CANCER AWARENESS         10/23/17

 

The Arkansas Prostate Cancer Foundation used grant funds from the Roy and Christine Sturgis Charitable Trust, Bank of  American NA Trustee, to fund the Foundation's Blue Ribbon Campaign.

 

The Campaign was a statewide outreach in September during Prostate Cancer Awareness month, and it utilized high school and college football programs to expand prostate cancer awareness to men in Arkansas. Student athletes wore blue ribbon decals on their helmets and high school game officials utilized blue penalty flags to draw attention to the risks that are associated with prostate cancer as well as to the services that are available to all Arkansans through the Foundation.

 

Bill Johnson is the Director of Development and Media Relations with the Foundation and he said that by using the platform of high school football and the Rural Arkansas Radio Network's Friday Night Football program, the Foundation was able to reach out to an estimated 300,000 men and their families all across the state, including areas that are recognized as being underserved by the Arkansas  Department of Health.

 

Johnson said in addition to the Radio awareness spots, funds from the Sturgis grant also enabled the Foundation to purchase the printing of 100 billboard posters that were posted free of charge on billboards with thousands of daily views in all parts of the state as well as print ads in four publications with a statewide readership of 200,000 plus. Johnson noted that as a result of the media access that was supported by the Sturgis grant, the Foundation saw a significant increase in the number of men that were screened for prostate cancer during the month of September and there are many more education and screening events scheduled in November.

 

According to the American Cancer Society, approximately 1,440 men in Arkansas will be diagnosed with prostate cancer this year and 260 men will die from the disease. Arkansas Prostate Cancer Foundation Executive Director Beverlyn Eckert said that while prostate cancer is a man's disease, it impacts the families, friends and loved ones associated with the men that are afflicted by prostate cancer.

 

For more information about the Foundation call 501-379-8027 or visit the website arprostatecancer.org.

 

 

TOUR DE QUEEN BIKE RIDE IS NOVEMBER 4TH         10/23/17

 

The De Queen/Sevier County Chamber of Commerce is once again inviting bicyclists from across the region to participate in the annual Tour de Queen Bike Ride on November 4th.

 

Riders will be able to choose routes of various lengths, including 15-miles, 25-miles, 36-miles and 47-miles. The routes will take riders through scenic areas around De Queen, including Chapel Hill and De Queen Lake.

 

Volunteers will mark various locations along the route as turn-around points and rest stops. Residents who live along the bike route will be asked to keep their dogs in a fenced in area or on a leash until the event is over.

 

The ride will begin in front of the De Queen/Sevier County Chamber of Commerce office on Stilwell Avenue in De Queen at 9 a.m. Online registration is available at www.bikereg.com by searching for Tour de Queen. 

 

Pre-registration is $25, if you register by October 25th. No awards will be given and this is not a timed race. All riders under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult and all riders must wear a helmet.

 

For more information, call Patrick Massey at 870-582-5746.

 

 

ARKANSAS HIGHWAY OFFICIALS MAY WAIT UNTIL 2019 TO PURSUE A BALLOT MEASURE          10/23/17

 

Arkansas Highway officials announced last week that they may wait until 2019 to take a road funding proposal to lawmakers instead of pursuing a ballot measure next year.

 

The move comes after Governor Asa Hutchinson said he would oppose any plan that called for tapping into general revenue.

 

Department of Transportation Director Scott Bennett said he has not given up on a ballot measure to raise money for highways, but he thought waiting until the 2019 legislative session may be another avenue for a funding proposal. He told members of the Highway Commission that he plans to bring a list of projects that could be paid for with a funding proposal to the commission during their December meeting.

 

Commissioners voted in June to pursue a highway funding ballot measure, but it has not endorsed a specific funding proposal. Earlier this month, Hutchinson said he would vigorously oppose diverting tax revenue from road-related items such as car sales to highways, because of the impact it would have on other state services.

 

Bennett said Hutchinson's position wasn't a surprise and that he would come back to the panel with road funding proposal options that wouldn't rely on tapping into general revenue. Bennett also present the panel with several possible funding proposals that would tap into such revenue but also raise taxes to pay for highway.

 

Highway officials say they have $9.3 billion in road needs over the next decade, but they only have about $4.5 billion in expected revenue.

 

Bennett said the commission would likely need to decide by March whether to pursue a ballot measure in order to have enough time to gather the thousands of signatures that are needed to put a proposal on the ballot in 2018.

 

 

HARVEST REGIONAL FOOD BANK BRINGING FOOD TO THOSE IN NEED IN SEVIER COUNTY     10/23/17

 

Harvest Regional Food Bank is returning to Sevier County with its Mobile Pantry. "We have several communities in our rural service area that are not fully served by local partner agencies. To se sure that the residents in these areas are served, we are providing direct service where needed." said Camille Coker Wrinkle, Executive Director of Harvest Regional Food Bank.


Harvest Regional Food Bank will distribute pantry boxes and USDA commodities from Horatio First United Methodist Church located at 304 S Pennock Street, Horatio, AR on Wednesday, November 15, 2017 from 10am to noon.

 

Volunteers are needed to help load boxes into cars. If you can volunteer, please call Harvest Regional Food Bank at 870-774-1398.

 

Recipients must bring photo identification verifying their age and residence in Sevier County. Distribution is limited to one per household. USDA commodities will be available for those who meet income requirements and do not receive commodities at another location. Please not, the day of mobile pantry will be on a Wednesday.

 

Food boxes will include an assortment of canned fruits and vegetables, rice, pasta, fruit juices, spices, and other items. Harvest Regional Food Bank began the Mobile Pantry Program in 2011 with Pike and Lafayette Counties. Howard & Colombia Counties were added in 2014.

 

 

 

REFUGE HOST MOBILITY IMPAIRED GUN DEER HUNT     10/20/17

 

Pond Creek National Wildlife Refuge is seeking applications for the 2017 Mobility Impaired Gun Deer Hunt scheduled to occur on November 4th-12th on a designated area of the refuge south of Horatio.

 

Applicants must be permanently confined to a wheelchair, have a missing limb, or be terminally ill to apply and must have a doctor's verification.

 

If interested, Contact Refuge Manager Paul Gideon at (870)-289-2126 (office) or (870) 784-3520 (Cell). Also, send in the hunter's name, address, phone number, and Doctor's verification letter to Pond Creek NWR, 1958 Central Road, Lockesburg, AR 71846 or Fax to 870-289-2127.

 

Applicants paperwork, for the Mobility Impaired hunt, need to be received at Pond Creek NWR by the end of the business day on November 1, 2017.

 

Applicants must possess a valid deer hunting license and comply with state regulations. The state bag limit applies by a legal buck is any buck deer. The 3-point rule does not apply.

 

DE QUEEN PLANNING COMMISSION APPROVES ZONING CHANGE         10/20/17

 

Thursday night, the De Queen Planning Commission met to consider a re-zoning request by Angie Walker for almost two acres of land that she owns at the corner of Ninth Street and Coulter Drive.

 

Mayor Billy Ray McKelvy reported the commission voted to approve the request and the De Queen City Council will consider passing an ordinance during their November 7th meeting. He also stated the Planning Commission will meet to consider another re-zoning request on Thursday, November 2nd.

 

Walker informed KDQN that she requested the zone change, so she could develop a small manufactured home division. She said she plans to put eight single-wide manufactured homes on the property to provide some additional housing in De Queen.

 

Commissioners also discussed their concerns about small houses, which are also referred to as tiny homes being moved into the city limits.

 

Walker said small homes were to expensive and did not provide enough room for families with children.

 

At the conclusion of the meeting, Mayor McKelvy declared a moratorium on small houses until the planning commission or city council can establish some rules to regulate them. 

 

 

4C COWBOY RANCH RODEO IS SATURDAY          10/20/17

 

The 8th Annual 4C Cowboy Church Ranch Rodeo is Saturday at 7 p.m. at the Sevier County Fair grounds.

 

Wright said the ranch rodeo is not like your normal rodeo. He said teams will be competing in stray gathering, herding, doctoring and wild cow milking.

 

Wright said Barry Ward of Kansas sang Thursday night at the church and he'll be singing and bringing the message Sunday morning at 8:45 a.m.

 

Ward said he would call his music western with a spiritual tint.

 

Concessions will be available. Admission is $5 for adults, $3 for children 6 to 12. For more information, call 870-584-8802.

 

 

DE QUEEN FIRST ASSEMBLY OF GOD CHURCH TO HOST FAMILY FEST OCTOBER 28TH        10/20/17

 

Youth Minister Jerry Minchew and Children's Minister Dan Nemlowill announced the De Queen First Assembly of God Church will be hosting their annual Family Fall Fest on Saturday, October 28th from 3 to 5 p.m. on their campus at 1440 West Collin Raye Drive.

 

The church will have some inflatables, games, food, candy and it's all free to the public.

 

Minchew said his ministry at the church focuses on teenagers and young adults.

 

For more information about the church or the Family Fall Fest, call the church at 870-584-3435.

 

 

CONSUMER ALERT: STATEWIDE PRESCRIPTION DRUG TAKE BACK IS OCTOBER 28TH         10/20/17

 

A report by the Arkansas State Crime Lab and the state's Medical Examiner's Office says hundreds of Arkansans died in 2016 from drug overdoses, with nearly 40 percent of those deaths in Pulaski, Sebastian and Washington counties.

 

Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge is encouraging Arkansans to clean out their medicine cabinets and bring any unused or expired medications to one of the state's more than 100 Prescription Drug Take Back Day drop-off locations from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, October 28th.

 

The local take back event will be held in front of the De Queen Wal-Mart.

 

Rutledge released the following list of medications that will be accepted at these events. The list includes, opioids, such as OxyContin, Stimulants, such as Adderall, Depressants, such as Ativan, other prescription medications, over-the-counter medication, vitamins, pet medicines, medicated ointments and lotions, inhalers, liquid medicines in glass or leak-proof containers and medicine samples.

 

Medications may be returned in the original bottle or in any other container for increased privacy and will be properly destroyed by law enforcement officials.

 

Medicines that are flushed or poured down the drain can end up polluting waters supplies. Many medicines are not removed by wastewater treatment plants or septic systems. Turning over these medications at a Take Back Day event will reduce the risk of accidental poisonings by children, senior adults or pets. It will also reduce the risk of a drug overdose.

 

Rutledge is partnering on the Prescription Drug Take Back Day with the Arkansas Department of Health, Department of Human Services, Arkansas National Guard, Arkansas Rotary Clubs, Arkansas State Board of Pharmacy, the FBI, the Office of the State Drug Director, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and over 130 additional law enforcement and government agencies, community organizations and public health providers.

 

For more information, call the Attorney General's office at 1-800-482-8982 or visit the website ArkansasAG.gov.

  

 

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE CONSIDERING CHANGES TO HIGHER EDUCATION FUNDING          10/20/17

 

A legislative committee will soon consider some new policies that are designed to track the improvement of Arkansas public college's and universities.

 

The policies lay out metrics that will score the state's public universities and community colleges to determine how much funding they should receive and whether the schools are improving.

 

The amended policies received initial approval earlier this week from a subcommittee of the Arkansas Legislative Council and the whole committee is expected to consider the policies today.

 

The new policies form part of a 2017 law that has changed the way Arkansas funds higher education institutions. Under the law, funding is based on students' progress through certificate or degree programs and their completion of those programs.

 

Previously, funding was largely based on an institution's enrollment.

 

The Department of Higher Education is also planning to add a post-completion success metric. The agency is working with the Arkansas Research Center and the state Department of Workforce Services to compile data on employment placement, graduate school acceptances, and wages, according to the Higher Education Department Director, Maria Markham.

 

The change came amid the state's higher education master plan, which set goals of increasing the percentage of local residents with certificates and higher education degrees by 2025.

 

 

CYBERSECURITY AND FRAUD SEMINAR NOVEMBER 15TH IN TEXARKANA        10/20/17

 

Manufacturing Solutions is a department of the Arkansas Economic Development Commission's Existing Business Resource Division and it will host a cybersecurity and fraud seminar for small businesses on Wednesday, November 15th from 1 to 5 p.m. at the Texarkana Chamber of Commerce.

 

Five speakers who are industry experts on cybersecurity-related issues such as cybersecurity fraud and liability, internet safety, financial risk mitigation, ransomware, safe banking procedures, and use of the social media in the workplace will offer practical solutions to address these serious and costly problems that small businesses face.

 

Attendees will learn ways to strengthen their cybersecurity framework, prevent hacks and mitigate cyber-related losses. The average cost of a cybersecurity breach on an affected small business was about $38,000 in 2015 according to a study conducted by Kaspersky Lab, a cybersecurity company.

 

Arkansas Economic Development Commission Executive Director Mike Preston stated, reports of massive data breaches among small businesses are becoming increasingly more common and affect the growth and development of our economy.  He said while cybersecurity is a concern among all businesses, the majority of all targeted cyberattacks in the past year were directed at small and mid-sized businesses. Preston said it is especially threatening to theses businesses, because about 60 percent of the businesses the report a breach, go out of business within six months of the attack. He said we need to do whatever we can to keep Arkansas' small businesses safe so they can continue to grow and reach their full potential.

 

The cost of the seminar is $25 per person and refreshments will be served. For more information about the seminar or to register, visit www.mfgsolutions.org.

 

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