Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Murfreesboro Diamond

Post date: Feb 26 2015 - 4:53pm
By Avonne Petty 
Pike County 4-H Program Assistant
MURFREESBORO – Heather Jackson was one of two Arkansas students selected as Arkansas’s top High School youth volunteer in the 2015 Prudential Spirit of Community Awards, a nationwide program honoring young people for outstanding acts of volunteerism. 
Jackson was nominated by Pike County 4-H. The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards, now in its 20th year, is conducted by Prudential Financial in partnership with the National Association of Secondary School Principals.
Jackson, the 17 year old daughter of Jimmy and Renita Jackson, is a member of the Caddo River Gems 4-H club of Glenwood. She educates people in her community on disaster preparedness through presentations, brochures, a day camp, and “home disaster packs.” Jackson began her project in 2009 after leading a 4-H food and clothing drive for victims of a tornado that struck the nearby town of Mena. “I realized how few of them were prepared for the tornado’s devastation,” said Heather. “I decided then to learn as much as I could about disaster preparedness so I could teach others how to handle these emergencies.”
After extensive research, Jackson developed a series of illustrated talks and demonstrations that she has presented to more than, 3,500 people at schools, 4-H events and numerous group gatherings. She also organized a 4-H day camp to teach young people about preparing for a disaster, produced a brochure on camping safety that is being distributed by the Corps of Engineers, and designed an annual display at the county fair. In addition, Jackson developed “Disaster Packs for Homes,” which contain items that can aid families in a quick evacuation from a home or campsite. “I feel disaster preparedness is important because emergencies can come in many forms and people can rebuild their lives much more easily if they are prepared,” said Heather.
Colby Cortez, 12, of Benton, the Middle School Honoree, was nominated by Bethel Middle School in Alexander for an extensive gardening program he conducted for a local homeless shelter charity.
As State Honorees, Heather and Colby will receive $1,000, an engraved silver medallion and an all-expense-paid trip in early May to Washington, D.C., where they will join the top two honorees from each of the other states and the District of Columbia for four days of national recognition events. During the trip, 10 students will be named American’s top youth volunteers of 2015.
Post date: Feb 26 2015 - 4:46pm
ARKADELPHIA -- A total of 256 students at Ouachita Baptist University were named to the President’s List for the fall 2014 semester.
To be named to the President’s List, a student must compile a 4.0 grade point average and be classified as a full-time student, with a minimum of 12 academic hours.
Ouachita Baptist University, a private Christian liberal arts university in Arkadelphia, is ranked among “Best National Liberal Arts Colleges” by U.S. News & World Report and among “America’s Top Colleges” by Forbes magazine. Serving since 1886 as a Christ-centered learning community, Ouachita has a current enrollment of 1,501 students from nearly 30 states and 30 nations.
The following local students were named to the President’s List:
Arkadelphia – Jace Bradshaw, Christopher Clark, Seth Daniell, Camden Dwelle, Kaitlyn Jackson, Katharine Kirby, Lindsey Pipkin, Caroline Poole, Chandler Powell, Abby Root, John Sivils, Brandon Smith, Alexa Spinks, Stephanie Westberg, Austin White
Bonnerdale – Victoria Clark
Glenwood – Raleigh Hansen
Hot Springs – Chris Hegwood, Heidi Hughes, Ali Kinsey, Nick Kowalkowski, Harry Lah, Emily Long, Zack Turman
Hot Springs Village – Macey Burr, Andrew Martin, Courtney Stanage, Katie Stanage, Erin Wilson
Nashville – Luke Dawson
Pearcy – Kori Bullard, Abbey Little
A total of 378 students at Ouachita Baptist University were named to the Dean’s List for the fall 2014 semester. The students will receive a certificate of recognition from Ouachita and will be included in the “National Dean’s List” for 2014-15.
To be named to the Dean’s List, a student must compile at least a 3.5 grade point average and be classified as a full-time student, with a minimum of 12 academic hours.
The following local students are included in the Dean’s List:
Arkadelphia – Craig Daniell, Sydney Daniell, Hannah Dixon, Allison Fowler, Dana Hamilton, Joanna Horton, Jake Knight, Spencer Knight, John Franklin Matros, Reagan Parsons, Jacob Roberson, Jordan Sharp, Kelly Strickland
Bismarck – Jessica Compton
Bonnerdale – Addison Bostian
Glenwood – Ethan Blackmon, Neelie Lee
Hot Springs – Alex Abbott, Richard Burke, Jackson Carter, Hanna Dean, Kayla De La Cruz, Neila Fisher, Michael Igbokidi, Madison Parks, Rebekah Taylor, Caroline Twyford, Allie Wade, Lainey Weatherford, Haley Whitworth, Angela Wilkinson
Nashville – Cameron Alexander, Molly Freel, Jenna Hendry, Hayden Kirchhoff
Pearcy – Michelle Baker
Post date: Feb 26 2015 - 4:35pm
By Margi Jenks
Crater of Diamonds State Park
March is almost here, so we have been busy all winter getting ready for our Spring Break visitors to the Crater of Diamonds State Park. Because Spring Break is a very busy month for us, I thought I would offer some simple tips that will help our visitors to have the very best possible diamond searching experience. 
1. Pack for any 
weather possibility: 
Bring clothes that will fit all different types of weather, especially if you are driving any distance to reach the diamond mine.  Arkansas’ March weather can be as variable as it is in many other parts of the country.  One day you may need earmuffs and multiple layers to stay warm. The next day you may need sunscreen, shorts, and tennis shoes.  And, of course, it can rain anytime, which calls for raingear and rubber boots to cope with our very muddy search field. Therefore, it is better to over pack and not need it, than to wish you hadn’t left it at home and have to buy something, just to be comfortable. 
2. Arrive early in the day: 
If you can, the earlier that you arrive in the morning, the better.  Our mine hours in March are 8 AM to 5 PM.  An earlier arrival may allow you to find a parking place nearer our visitor center/mine entrance.  It will also allow you to avoid the long lines which always seem to start forming as it gets closer to noon.  And, of course, the longer that you look for a diamond, the more likely you are to find one.
3. Stow your valuables 
and park legally:  
Lock your car and stow any valuables out of sight.  Like most state parks, the diamond mine is a pretty safe place. The number of thefts is very low, but it never hurts to take some simple precautions.  Also, park only in designated and legal parking spots. As our parking fills up it is tempting to do some “creative parking”.  However, our ranger does patrol the parking lot and will issue tickets for illegally parked vehicles.  When our space starts getting full, we will have staff members to guide you to alternate parking areas. Finally, please report any problems to the nearest park staff member.
4. Pets: 
Dogs, cats, hamsters, weasels and even llamas have visited the diamond mine. All we ask is that you keep them on a leash.  They also must be under your personal control at all times.  Therefore, you can’t tie them up to something, even if you are standing right there.  Finally, please do not leave your pet in your vehicle unless the windows are down sufficiently to keep the vehicle cool.  Vehicle insides on sunny days can heat up even if the outdoor temperatures are cool.
5. Educate yourself
about diamond mining: 
Learn as much as you can about diamond mining both before you arrive, and before you go out on the search field.  We have lots of ways for you to educate yourself about diamond mining.  For example, read the diamond mining information on our park website, www.craterofdiamondsstatepark.com. After you arrive, listen careful to the instructions of the front desk staff, who will sell you your mine tickets.  Look at the beautiful diamonds displayed in our visitor center exhibit hall. Then, watch the 7 1/2 minute video on the outside wall big screen on the top floor of our Diamond Discovery Center.  Next, attend one of the many diamond mining demonstrations that we hold at the lower level of the Diamond Discovery Center.  Finally, ask any questions of our knowledgeable and friendly staff.  We are happy to help in any way we can.
6. Watch your children 
and rental equipment: 
Like Christmas shopping in a mall, the diamond mine with lots of visitors can be hazardous to unwatched  children, valuables, and rental equipment that has been left unattended, even if are only gone for a few minutes. And it is easy for children to stray, and also for them to pick up someone else’s equipment.  It is also easy to become distracted by that shiny thing two rows over. So, please keep a close eye on all the items that are dear to you.
Please come to the diamond mine for your Spring Break trip.  We are ready to help you and extend a warm Arkansas welcome!
Post date: Feb 26 2015 - 4:22pm
LITTLE ROCK — Across the country, Farm Bureaus are making safety a top priority this spring through the Agricultural Safety Awareness Program (ASAP). As a part of ASAP, March 1-7 has been designated as Agricultural Safety Awareness Week.
This year’s theme, “Ride Like A Pro…Wherever You Go,” will focus on ATV safety and helmet usage. All-terrain vehicles are used on most farms and ranches in Arkansas, but despite the availability of good safety equipment and training programs, injuries and fatalities involving ATV operators happen much too frequently.
According to the latest figures from the Consumer Product Safety Commission:
• There are 804 ATV related deaths nationally on average.  
• Fifty-six percent of these deaths occur in May through September. 
• One-third of these deaths occur on paved surfaces.  
• Arkansas averages 12 ATV related deaths per year, and three of these are children under 16.
• According to the Arkansas Childrens Hospital Trauma Department, 101 of its admissions in 2014 were ATV-related.
“It doesn’t take very big investments of time or money to make a big difference in the level of safety on most farms,” said Jason Kaufman, safety coordinator for Arkansas Farm Bureau. “ATV safety is a big part of farm safety because so many farms use these vehicles for work and recreation.”
Many simple, inexpensive tips can increase any ATV rider’s safety. For example, users can “get dressed to ride,” using helmets, safety glasses, long sleeves, gloves, long pants and boots with heels to reduce the risk of injury. ATV drivers shouldn’t carry passengers, either, and should only ride ATVs of a size that fits the operator according to the ATV manufacturer’s recommendations. It’s important to operate at safe speeds as well, especially when turning or near hazards. Most injuries are caused from overturned ATVs. Stay off public streets and highways as the law requires.  
It’s especially important for ATV users to take an approved rider’s training course. 
The Cooperative Extension Service of the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture provides these through the ATV Safety Institute’s 4-H ATV RiderCourse. The agency has trained 24 county agents and state faculty as licensed instructors. For more information, visit www.uaex.edu/4h-youth and select the ATV Safety link listed under Activities and Programs, phone 501-671-2053 or contact your local Cooperative Extension Office.
Arkansas Farm Bureau has two full-time safety coordinators on staff who offer 14 different safety and informational programs, including ATV safety, free of charge. 
“The safety coordinators at Arkansas Farm Bureau are dedicated to educating Arkansans about safety concerns,” said safety coordinator Amanda Williams. “We not only offer ATV safety programs, but programs on farm and tractor safety, distracted driving prevention, drinking and driving prevention, and more.”
For more information, visit the “Education and Youth” section of Arkansas Farm Bureau’s website, www.arfb.com.
Arkansas Farm Bureau is a nonprofit, private advocacy organization of more than 190,000 families throughout the state working to improve farm and rural life.
Post date: Feb 18 2015 - 10:55am
GLENWOOD -- Expired tags and false names led to a narcotics bust Wednesday, Feb. 11, with all three suspects remaining in the custody of the Pike County Detention Facility. 
Bennie Earl Davis and Jocelyn Brooke Hope are being held on $75,000 bonds for the charges of: maintaining a drug premises; possession of methamphetamine with purpose to deliver; possession of drug paraphernalia; and manufacture, possession, and transportation (for an illicit still). 
Michele Lea Garrison is currently being held on a $5,000 bond for possession of controlled substance, methamphetamine; and possession of controlled substance without prescription.
Pike County Sheriff’s Department Chief Deputy David Shelby was on patrol in the Glenwood area when he observed a white SUV with expired tags on the license plate. 
For the rest of the story, please see this week's Murfreesboro Diamond or Glenwood Herald.
Post date: Feb 16 2015 - 12:02pm

Natasha Worley and Heather Judd are new staff members at the Nashville News. Worley is the paper’s advertising manager, while Judd oversees the digital presence of the News and its three sister papers in Murfreesboro, Glenwood and Mt. Ida.

Post date: Feb 5 2015 - 2:05pm

Senior Rattler quarterback and linebacker Alex Kennedy signed his letter of intent to play football for Henderson State University this fall. Seated, from left, Alan Kennedy, Alex Kennedy and Shawna Kennedy. Standing, from left, coaches Marc McRae, Jeff Jones and Chuck Lowery. Not pictured is coach Steve Martin. Photo by Heather Grabin