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There will also be food, games, and other activities. Of course, for those not necessarily predisposed to spend the holiday in church, there are a wide range of activities going on in the area. Doors to the event open at p. Hors doeuvres will be served during the evening, with breakfast and champagne served at midnight. To reserve tickets, call The event will include activities throughout the evening for kids in the upstairs gallery. The incident, discovered Monday at the home of John Walter Vaughan, resulted in the theft of a Stihl leaf blower and a heater from Vaughans garage.
The case remains open for further investigation. Loss-prevention personnel at the store allegedly saw McCollie concealing items inside a diaper bag. She is scheduled to appear in Surry District Court on Jan.
Ronald Matthew Speaks, 39, of Brooklen Ave. This led to the seizure of six weapons, including two gauge single-shot shotguns, a gauge double-barrel shotgun, two. He is facing a Jan. The case is listed as inactive.
The state license plate agency in Mount Airy, which closed on Sept. The Mount Airy license-plate office had been at N. Its closing was due to the July 31 retirement of the long-time contracting agent for the office, Ruth Hawks of Mount Airy, who has been on the job for 35 years. As it now stands, local residents have to travel to other license agencies in either Dobson or Elkin to obtain plates or stickers and receive other services such as the processing of title applications.
In the past month, however, things have slowed down. It was very busy right after they closed, but it has slowed down some since then. I think it is the time of year, and I think Raleigh understands that. December is a slower time of the year than other months, Brendle said. She said that a new office in Mount Airy should be opening in February.
My understanding is that they will have somebody sometime in February. Thats what they have told me. They have got to be trained before the office can open. My understanding is that they have selected a site and everything is on go, Brendle said. Ive not really been told anything definite, but there will be one coming around the first of February.
They are going to wait until after the first of the year to start training. North Carolinas license-plate offices are contracted to private individuals rather than having them manned by state employees. The N. Division of Motor Vehicles in Raleigh will announce who will win the bid to be the new contractor in two weeks, officials said this week.
A proposal to allow an occupancy tax to be collected in Surry County, which died in the state Legislature last spring, could be resurrected in an upcoming General Assembly session. The proposal was derailed in Raleigh in May during a short session of state lawmakers, due to all members of the local legislative delegation not agreeing on the introduction of a bill to make it a reality. Rules of the short session required all General Assembly members who represent a certain area, such as Surry, to agree on proposed legislation affecting that locality.
While it was strongly backed by Rep. Don East opted not to sign off on the measure, effectively derailing the proposals consideration this year. However, when the Legislature reconvenes in late January for its next regular, long session, those rules requiring total support by the delegation will not be in effect.
Since the short session, Mount Airy attorney Sarah Stevens has been elected to the 90th District House of Representatives seat occupied by Harrell, and could submit a proposal for the county occupancy tax to be considered by the Legislature. I have been approached about it, said Stevens, who at last report was weighing all the pros and cons of the matter before making a firm commitment.
Stevens was asked to introduce the occupancy-tax legislation by Paul Johnson, a member of the Surry County Board of Commissioners. Surrys four municipalities, which all have occupancy taxes, were able to gain approval for theirs in the past due to bills being filed during long legislative sessions. The county commissioners have approved charging those who stay in hotels, motels or bed and breakfast establishments outside the municipalities a 6-percent tax, subject to approval in the General Assembly.
By law, such proceeds must be used to increase tourism in the locality where they are collected. Stevens pledged to explore the matter fully before lending her support to the occupancy tax in the upcoming session. That will include consulting with East, she said. The Pilot Mountain Republican also said he thought it was unfair to slap visitors to the county with an extra charge, after they already have invested money on gas and other expenses to come here in the first place.
Im sort of opposed to taxes, too, said Stevens, who during her campaign identified overtaxation as the No. However, she said the occupancy-tax proposal has some merit due to the fact it would not be levied on county residents, but those who come in from outside. Her eventual position on the Surry occupancy tax will be decided after she researches all the issues involved, Stevens said.
Occupancy-tax legislation may be introduced Tom Joyce Staff Reporter. It may be the holidays, but Mount Airy and East Surrys boys and girls basketball teams are lacing up their sneakers again this year for the Granite City Classic to be played at Mount Airy Monday and Tuesday.
Mount Airys girls basketball team plays takes on Carroll County on Monday at 7 p. Mount Airy girls basketball coach Howard Mayo is happy with the way his team, currently overall, is playing heading into the Classic.
I think were seeing improvement in our team, Mayo said. We have different people giving us different contributions on different nights, and thats a good thing. Mayo likes his team having the opportunity to play different competition. It gives us a chance to compete against good caliber teams, Mayo said of the Classic.
Both Patrick and Carroll County are over. This will give us the chance to gauge ourselves versus different competition you dont normally get to see. Jordan Hiatt currently leads the Lady Granite Bears in scoring. She averages 11 points per game and is currently averaging about five assists per game. East Surrys girls basketball team tips off the Classic Monday at 4 p. East Surry coach Robert Smith said after its game with the Trojans that hes happy with where his team is.
After the Bishop McGuinness game, our goal was to get to before Christmas break, he said. We knew we had some tough opponents. It was a long week, playing three games in four days.
The girls did a great job. On the boys side at Mount Airy , Wade Moody has lit up the scoreboard several times this season. Last Saturday, Moody dropped 27 points in the bucket against a tough Cherryville team as the Bears sprinted to an win. For Moody, that came after scoring 29 points against Surry Central and 27 points against North Surry earlier this season.
Mount Airy boys basketball coach Kevin Spainhour was very pleased with his teams most recent win against Cherryville. They are pushing each other and thats what is so great about us, he said. I think in the first half we played probably 12 guys. That depth is something that we feel like we can continue to grow. East Surrys boys basketball team plays Patrick County Monday at p.
The Cardinals then face Union Pines on Tuesday at 4 p. Despite a rocky start for the defending Northwest 1-A Conference champs, East Surry coach Jason Anderson likes the way his team is playing. Were playing pretty well right now, Anderson said. Weve played well all year long; we just havent gotten our shots to go down, but I like the team. Weve played well and definitely been competitive in every ballgame weve played in. Its just one of those things where we could turn the corner and go the other way.
I know a little bit about Patrick County, Anderson said. Union Pines is bringing lots of kids back from year before. Our team played Patrick during the summertime. Ive talked a lot with their coach, Keith Gunter. The Granite City Classic full schedule follows.
East Surry, 4 p. Mount Airy vs. Carroll County, 7 p. Boys Basketball Patrick County vs. East Surry, p. Union Pines, p. Patrick County, p. Girls Basketball Carroll County vs. Patrick County, 7 p. Spainhour said the alumni game was started to build the foundation that is Mount Airy basketball. We started this last year with the hopes of just getting together the foundation that is Mount Airy basketball, Spainhour said. Mount Airy basketball dates well back beyond the s.
Last year, we had two guys play who were from the state championship team of the s, including Ernie Nester. We had Jim Forest, who is now a coach on the junior varsity basketball coach play. Hes a late s graduate of Mount Airy. Spainhour said Forest taught him a lot about the tradition known as Mount Airy basketball. Jim has brought a wealth of knowledge to me about the history of Mount Airy basketball, Spainhour said. Well get these guys together and hopefully, we can make it an annual event.
It allows the guys to feel like theyre still a part of the program. It also gives them a chance to see the history and the passion Mount Airy has. Around 15 players are expected to compete in this years alumni game. Twelve competed last year. Ive heard from quite a few, so Im thinking were gonna have around 15 players, Spainhour said. Older alumni expected include Kevin Hill and Anthony Joyce.
Spainhour is also expecting Levi Goins to play in this years game. Goins is a member of the Granite Bears state championship basketball team. McKenzie Sumner played for Mount Airys varsity basketball team through his senior season in I think its just a lot of fun to see guys you havent seen in a while, former Granite Bear McKenzie Sumner, now a senior at North Carolina said. To get back with everybody and just play, back in , I had close contact with everybody.
Wed practice three hours a day. You become close to everybody. Its good to get back and catch up with everybody. Sumner believes the alumni game gives former Bears a sense of school pride. This is the second year weve done this, and its a good idea to keep everybody in touch with the program. It gives us a sense of school pride that you belong to a program. I take pride in that. Sumner will suit up on Saturday. Former Granite Bear Anthony Joyce, who will also play Saturday, said the alumni game is like a family reunion.
It brings back a lot of memories, Joyce said. We had a fun group of guys. We all grew up playing basketball as kids, so its like a family reunion. Joyces senior season was the season, just one year before Mount Airy won it all. I graduated in , Joyce said. I played varsity for two years. I played with Richard Joyce the year before they won the championship. We had already graduated. A former all-conference Bear, Joyce said his greatest memory was going toe-to-toe with Duke star basketball player J.
My biggest memory I have was playing against J. Reddick, Joyce said. Man, he was a good player, a fantastic shooter… Our coach knew his team was really good at the time, so he set it up, and we played at home. The gym was packed. Everyone came out to watch that game. Spainhour is hopeful many people will come out to see the event.
Its a really fun event, Spainhour concluded. Were having an open practice prior to the game where parents and alumni can come for varsity parctice. Its an all-around good event. Mount Airys boys basketball program has four state championship titles to its credit: , , and William Bill Adams Sr. She was born Jan. Adams practiced nursing over the years until having to leave her job at Central Continuing Care to take care of her husband.
Adams was very much loved by her family and friends, never met a stranger, and always was there to lend a hand or a kind word of support. A graveside service will be held 2 p. Sunday, Dec. The family will receive friends from 7 to 9 p.
East Surrys girls used a strong overall showing to pull away from Carroll County Va. Kelsey Long led the Cardinals with 11 points and also picked up all-tournament honors with fellow teammate Courtney Simmons. The Cardinals came out strong, leading the Cavaliers at the end of the first quarter behind Long and Simmons. A small run by Carroll in the early goings of the second quarter came when East turned the ball over on several possessions.
The Cardinals took a lead into half-time, with eight different players putting up 2 points or more. East Surry stretched their lead in the second half behind increased defensive intensity, with Carroll turnovers leading to easy baskets for the Cardinals.
Long went down hard in the third quarter on her elbow and did not return, taking away a vital cog for the Cardinals. After Simmons had torched Patrick Co. Kaitlin Viairs led Carroll with 16 points in the loss, with Kayla Goins adding 5 points. Goins was chosen to the Granite City Classics all tournament team for her performances Monday and Tuesday.
East Surry coach Robert Smith said while his team came away with two wins during the holiday tournament, he thinks the Cardinals need work to return to the form they showed earlier in the season. I thought we came out with a little more effort and intensity in the second half, not a lot, Smith said.
These two nights, I dont know if its the Christmas break or what, but I think we have regressed a bit from where we were a week ago. But hopefully well get things straightened out before we get back in our conference.
Give Carroll County credit, they are scrappy, they play hard even when they are a little depleted with their personnel. Bullington 2, Nichols 2, Marshall 2, Shuff 2. Brown told the group that bringing a medium security prison would be a win-win situation in Surry County. As we watch jobs close up and leave the county, the prison will bring new jobs to the area. Jobs that will be recession proof, Brown said. Brown said that a committee that is supporting the prison is hoping to approach the state legislature sometime in January.
He said Surry County is in the running along with Rockingham County. If we can get this prison to come here, we will be able to hire people right away to start construction on the facility. The actual facility would cover about 30 acres, but must be located on at least acres of land. Construction would take about two years, Brown said. Brown explained that in addition to the work that would be provided by the prison, roads would need to be built, water and sewer lines would need to be expanded.
He said the prison would employ to full-time workers who would receive full benefits from the state. This will be a big boost to our economy, he said. Brown said that not only would the prison help the job market by hiring workers, he said Surry Community College would need to expand training and other local businesses would benefit as well. Its more money for our economy. It will be more work for local attorneys, because if you are in there, you will want to file appeals to try to get out.
Its more money for local motels and restaurants. When grandma comes to visit, she will need a place to stay and somewhere to eat. Visitors will even walk downtown and get a pork chop sandwich, maybe even take a squad-car tour, Brown said as laughter erupted concerning the squad-car tours for people visiting inmates. Brown assured the group that potential jail breaks would not be a problem for Surry County. When we visited the facility in Alexander County we observed the security practices.
Since that facility has been in operation, they have never had a prison break. And if someone did break out, they are certainly not going to go down on Main Street and whistle at the women. They are going to try get back home get out of the state as soon as possible, Brown said. Brown said yes, all inmates are required to have some type of job.
At the Alexander County facility, the inmates make office furniture. Kate Appler, executive director for the United Fund of Surry, asked if the facility had been defined as far as security goes. Brown said the facility would be a medium security prison. Sue Brownfield asked if Surry County is still in the running to get the prison after hearing rumors that the county had lost the bid.
Brown said We are certainly not out of the running. Laura Whorton asked if a proposed site had been named. Brown answered by saying, The county will have to purchase the land. There are many sites that are proposed. I have had phone calls from people who have land for sale to the county for this. Albert Blackmon asked Brown who will give the presentation to the state legislators.
The core committee that has set up to work on this will approach the state legislators, Brown said. Burke Robertson asked how political of a decision will it be for state lawmakers. I didnt think it was going to be political at all.
But I was wrong. I found out that state politics is very political, Brown said. Many of you have already given me letters of support. We really do need these letters so that we can put these in our presentation. We are dangling with the idea with getting the governor -elect to come to Mount Airy. Whether she will do it or not, we dont know. But I do need letters from every citizen, every business, church groups and other clubs anyone who wants to support this, Brown said.
Local author Wanda Urbanska asked if having a prison in Surry County would be seen as a positive or negative for the area. In all of the cases I have read about there has been a positive effect.
Ive tried to do the research on that. But what I have found is that it is better to have a bird in the hand than 12 on the bush out there, Brown concluded. While the number of visitors coming to Mount Airy and the surrounding area has decreased since August, local tourism officials say that doesnt mean that tourism isnt still a vital contributor to economic profit in the area.
Its simply a reflection of the tough economic times. Since the Visitor Center opened its doors at the Chamber of Commerce in , it has greeted more than , visitors. According to a report released by the Chamber of Commerce last month, the number of visitors steadily increased until August of this year when the center saw only 6,, which was about less people than it did in July.
September saw a total of 6, visitors which was people less than September October saw almost 1, less than October , and November saw more than less than November As of Tuesday night, the numbers for December had not been completed. Decreased numbers are also evident in the revenue generated from the occupancy tax, which dropped 9. Jessica Icenhour, the Director of Tourism at the Greater Mount Airy Chamber of Commerce, who compiled the report, listed the declining economy and high gas prices as factors contributing to the decrease of visitors to the area.
All the travel forecast point to the economy as playing a role, she said. I think numbers will be higher come She added that on Monday the center had counted visitors for that entire day, indicating a larger number than average for daily visitors. According to the tourism report, the monthly average of visitors from July to November was 6, which comes to about people a day. Now that the price of gas has gone down, people are taking more day trips than night trips, she said.
Our visitors are leisure visitors. Both Oberle and Icenhour said that Mount Airy and the surrounding area lends itself to the casual traveler because of its variety of low cost fun. Were promoting authenticity, we must be authentic in our role, she explained about the branding process. What we present must actually be the reality of what people experience here and what we are. Moving forward for Completing the branding process, which includes branding both Surry County and its hospitality industry, are the goals that Oberle said she sees the Tourism Partnership focusing on in the upcoming year.
Were extremely pleased with how weve been able to put together the partnership, she said. Everyone recognizes that tourism is critical to economic prosperity, and weve received full fledged support from other organizations. Its a milestone to see this level of cooperation. In that union of NC STEP, known as the Surry Cluster, Oberle said the members developed a camaraderie that spurred an initiative to start the organization after they disagreed with the county, who wanted to create a similar organization like the Partnership.
The countys organization would have taken 50 percent of the revenue generated from the areas occupancy tax, which is six percent, from each participating muncipalitythe Tourism Partnership only collects a third of that revenue. The credit really goes to the three municipalities working together on NC STEP, said Oberle, adding that she believed the Tourism Partnership was one of the only organizations of its kind in the state, and one of few in the country.
It was a strategic goal to promote tourism in a collective manner. We didnt have the leverage to do what we wanted to do, so we had an idea to form strategic partnership. We had to move fast. I knew because of the NC STEP relationships, the mayors, town mangers and other leaders from all four towns were in all complete agreement about forming the partnership.
We didnt think collecting 50 percent was necessary, we thought we could do it for less. The revenue received from each municipality helps cover advertising costs and other methods of promoting tourism.
One of the initiatives Oberle hopes to sponsor in the upcoming year is a Familiarity Tour, in which those working in small businesses related to the hospitality industry would receive on the spot training that offers the Surry brand of hospitality, Oberle said. One of our priorities is getting the hospitality committee back together, and to begin to put tactical actions in place which will include FAM tours for key hospitality locations, and other hospitality businesses that have high guests contact.
It will be a travel road show that takes hospitality training directly to restaurants, conveniences stores, retails, cafes and smaller operations that couldnt afford to send people off site. One of the key things is to establish our own brand of hospitality that makes a statement of what exists here, were not trying to change anybody here, but to heighten peoples sense about what brings people here.
Were already good, we know we can get even better, we want to perpetuate that. Red House Arts Center May Kasugai Station Meitetsu January Gulliver's World January Daniel Fitzgerald writer December Infocorp April List of minor View Askewniverse characters March Jim Haskins April Lower Elements February Canberra A-League Bid April Live Recording 11 Items Promo 79 Items Reissue 42 Items New Items Used 1, Items 1, Please provide a valid price range.
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