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As Mickey Gilley left the stage in Hiawassee on a recent Saturday night, he said, “Thank you for the memories.” He clearly enjoyed sharing the songs from his career. He performed many of the 17 number one hits he has had during his more than 50 years in the business. How wonderful to still b…

We're always interested in hearing about news in our community. Let us know what's going on!

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Dear Editor: I just want to give praise and thanks to our holy, loving God for the COVID vaccine. I have family who refuse to get the shot and some say they are going to trust God to keep them safe. Bu I just want to tell them this COVID vaccine is from the Lord. He has given us a brain to u…

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Our attitude in the morning will set the tone for our day. We may start out with a great day, but there can be people we encounter who put a damper on things.

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Dear Editor: There is a new dance craze sweeping the south. By south I mean southern Banks county, at least. I am calling it the Joro dance.

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Dear Editor, We recently acknowledged the 20th anniversary of the deadly attacks by terrorists on 9/11. Almost 3,000 brave and innocent Americans were killed. As of September 14, 2021, almost 664,000 Americans have been killed by COVID. That means that less than 1/2 of one percent represents…

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Mom and I sat in the Tanger Outlet Center parking lot on a recent Saturday eating a lobster roll. We went over to Banks Crossing because I read that a food truck offering lobster rolls would be at the outlet center for the Labor Day holiday. I also saw the first 50 Tanger VIP members would g…

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First, he called me Mae; then he called me Gram. Today, he calls me Gram-Gram with such light-heartedness and Grammmmmyyyy when he wants to scold me for playing jokes on him. From the moment I looked at Nate Lewis on September 7, 2017, he has melted my heart.

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When Cade Thompson was in sixth grade he went to a TobyMac concert. Saturday night, the 19-year-old opened for Tobymac at a concert in Hiawassee, Ga. It was a full-circle moment for the teenager who grew up in church and had a dream.

Newsletters

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Dear Editor: COVID-19 cases are rising dangerously. People, including young adults and children, are getting very sick and some are dying. Our health care workers are stressed to a breaking point. Our hospitals are reaching capacity to help those sick. Other hospital surgeries and procedures…

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There is no doubt that we are living in unprecedented times and people are searching for answers like never before. As we open God’s Word, surely, we will realize God is the answer no matter what the situation. At times our answers are found when we focus on small words with great meaning in…

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I recently heard a speaker address how “secondary stress” can be dangerous. Dr. Robert Wicks, who received a doctorate in psychology and taught at Loyola University in Maryland where he is now professor emeritus, spoke on secondary stress and how it leads to burnout.

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Dear Editor: I feel so fortunate to have a newspaper that regularly publishes common sense opinion pieces by Mike Buffington. The August special price of a subscription is well worth getting to read his latest opinion page article.

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As soon as I found out I was going to be a grandparent, a thousand activities rushed through my mind. I wanted to do everything with my little buddy. We must go to the water slides; we can forget the amusement parks; what about tubing on the snow and rafting in the river? Of course, we can’t…

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As Georgia is considered a part-time legislature, many are under the impression that our work is complete once session concludes. This could not be further from the truth. In fact, it is safe to say that more work is completed outside of the legislative session, than during our 40-days on Ca…

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I’ve covered a lot of meetings over the past 40+ years. Some have been a little rowdy, especially about controversial zoning issues. A few have been ugly, like the one a few years ago at the old Benton Elementary School when the public was upset at plans to consolidate the school into anothe…

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I was speechless when I received the call last week. I got the news that a beloved boss and dear friend went home to be with the Lord.

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I think milestone birthdays call for an extra special celebration. My sister, Amanda, had a milestone birthday earlier this year, turning 50, so I wanted to do something really special and I wanted it to be a surprise. That is really a challenge since she has a gift for figuring everything out.

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When you’re going on a trip, the day you travel to your destination is always very tiring. I had been up very early, traveling to the Atlanta airport and finding my way to the correct gate in the international terminal. 

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Many years ago, when I answered the call to teach, I chose middle school because I know students face challenges during this time. I was available to guide them in the right direction when needed. I specifically wanted to teach six-grade so I could assure parents that we would take care of t…

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I’ve been a fan of the poet, Robert Frost, for a long time. The other day I came across one of my favorites, “The Road Not Taken,” and for the first time I thought about it from a spiritual perspective.

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I put my phone in my purse when I went on a short ride. Once I got home, I immediately looked at my phone. My daughter-in-law, Casey, had called and Facetimed me several times. That was so unusual; she knows I will call her back as soon as possible. On that particular day, she really needed …

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We all come to a crossroads in our lives at one time or another. Most likely there is an easy road and there is a road that seems much more difficult. The flesh may call us to take the easy way, but not so fast. God may be taking us through the fire to refine us as gold.  We should weigh our…

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Recently. I spent some time with my cousin, Elaine, and both our families were there. As I fellowshipped with her grands, it reminded me that time flies! One of her “babies” is heading to college, another is in high school, and the other grands seem to be shooting up like bean stalks. Also, …

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Greetings from under the Gold Dome. Although the legislative session concluded April 1, we continued our work with the Governor’s office in hopes of getting our bills signed into law. Per Georgia law, Governor Kemp is given 40 days after the session adjourns to either sign or veto proposed l…

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Do you like change? Some of us like it while others, like me, prefer things to stay exactly the same. As I wrap up my teaching career this week, I will have to admit, it is truly bittersweet. The change will be good; it is ordained by God, but still I leave behind a season of life where I bu…

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It was a year and half ago when I began to entertain the idea of leaving daytime teaching. Although I don’t’ think I had the courage to go through with it. Then the Lord sent me to a pre-retirement meeting, and little did I know, He set me up!

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I got the first three stamps in my Georgia Farm Bureau Farm Passport on Saturday with stops at Jaemor Farms at Banks Crossing, Jaemor Farms in Alto and Moon Farms Country Market at Colbert in Madison County. I bought strawberries, strawberry jam, salsa, pound cake and lots of vegetables.

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As I got settled in the ambulance, with an IV being put in my arm and the oxygen going in my nose so that I could breathe better, I heard my mother’s voice outside talking to one of the ambulance attendants. She kept talking until we pulled out of the driveway. During my week-long hospital s…

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As Mother’s Day approaches my prayer is that we will take a moment and reflect on a mother’s love. I was lucky to have my mom for 24 years, and I still miss her so much. I also recognize that God has placed a number of godly women in my life. I think we will all agree, that one of God’s grea…

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“Ladies first,” my grandson Nate said as he stopped at the front door for his sister, Rylee, and me to go into the house. I tried to get both of them to go in front of me since it was raining, but it wasn’t happening.

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Words can change the atmosphere of your life. Words are so powerful. Be positive in what you say and it will change your attitude. In Proverbs 16:24, It says, “Kind words are like honey — sweet to the soul and healthy for the body.”