A large crowd gathered Friday, Sept. 27, for the Lula Depot dedication ceremony.
“This gathering today (Sept. 27) is all about commitment,” Mayor Jim Grier told the more than 100 people gathered in the depot.
Over the past few years, the Lula City Council has made a commitment to bring new life to downtown Lula, both by creating projects funded by the city and also by encouraging private investment in the downtown area, Grier added.
“This project is a key component of that commitment,” Grier said.
Grier presented a brief history of the depot and the surrounding park.
In the early 1980s, a group of Lula citizens, known as the Lula Area Business Association, was committed to creating a park where the city could gather for events such as festivals like Railroad Days, games and other gatherings that brought citizens together. At that time, the group acquired the land from the railroad and soon constructed the stage that is still in use.
Then in 1996, there was a slightly different group, made up of both business owners and active citizens, known as the Lula Area Betterment Association. (LABA). That LABA committed to constructing the depot replica. The building was constructed with volunteer labor and many of the materials were donated by area businesses.
“The commitment of those volunteers was strong and two years later the building was completed,” Grier said. “On August 22, 1998, a group like us gathered here to dedicate this building to Joel W. Poole and other Lula citizens who had worked for the railroad.”
One of the speakers at the 1998 dedication ceremony was State Representative Carl Rogers and Rogers was in attendance for Friday’s renovation celebration.
Phase 1 of the renovation project on both the inside and outside of the depot building has been completed and Phase 2, consisting of work on the stage and yard, is expected to begin on October 7.
“We expect to be able to start taking reservations in December for use beginning in January,” Grier said.
Grier thanked city manager Dennis Bergin for his commitment to this project after the original general contractor awarded the bid for construction for the entire Phase 1 of the project walked away before starting work.
He also thanked Lula citizen Wayne Clanton, for his work as the on-site manager and scheduler, and many others who were a part of the renovation and restoration project.
The group gathered for the ribbon-cutting included Lula staff members, Lula business owners, Banks County officials, Hall County officials, Lula residents and people from the surrounding area.
“As we cut this ribbon and open a new chapter for this building and our community, let’s make a new commitment,” Grier said. “A commitment to care for this building as we enjoy it, and that means all of us, not just the city employees. A commitment to support our Lula businesses as they commit to support this community. And finally, let’s make a commitment to support each other as friends, neighbors and even family as we enjoy this Community Center and all the elements of our community.”
The 2019 Historic Homer Walking Tour: The Talking Dead will be held on Friday, Oct. 4, and Saturday, Oct. 5. Tours begin at 6 and 7 p.m. each night in front of the Historic Courthouse and Museum.
Tickets are $10 per adult. Children under 13 may tour free when accompanied by an adult. Tickets will be sold cash-only and on a first-come, first-served basis on the evening of the tours at a table at the front of the Historic Courthouse and Museum.
The route is approximately a half mile in length and a tour guide will provide historical information during travel. Along the route guests will stop and meet some of Banks County's 'previous residents' who will share their stories. This year, 13 stops are scheduled where visitors will encounter 18 cast members.
The evening's journey ends at the Historic Jail which guests may also tour. Light snacks and refreshments will be served at the historic courthouse following each tour.
Guests are encouraged to bring a flashlight for the 7 p.m. tours for their personal safety. Reservations are encouraged and can be made by email to BanksCountyHistory@Gmail.com or by calling 678-971-9390.
There is no deposit or pre-payment required.
The Banks County Historical Society will host the tours.
For more information, visit BanksCountyHistoricalSociety.org, call 678-971-9390 or visit the society’s social media page on Facebook.
The 2019 Banks County Agriculture Awards Committee will be accepting nominations for the following three categories: Farmer of the Year, Woman in Agriculture, and Agribusiness of the year.
Nominations from the community including nominee's name and contact information can be made to the Banks County Farm Bureau at 706-677-2215 or email Julie at firstname.lastname@example.org<mailto:email@example.com.
Nominations are due by October 11.
The Awards Banquet will be held on Thursday, November 7, at 6:30 p.m. at Mt. Carmel Baptist Church, Lula.
For more information, contact Julie Jackson at the Banks County Farm Bureau at 706-677-2215.
Several events are coming up at Banks County schools, including:
BANKS COUNTY PRIMARY SCHOOL
•Fall Break – Oct. 7-11.
•Farm Day – from 8:30 to 11 a.m. on Friday, Oct. 18.
•Fall Festival – from 5-7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 24.
BANKS COUNTY ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
•Book Fair – Sept. 23-27.
•Governance Meeting – Sept. 26.
•Fall Break – Oct. 7-11.
•Flu Shots – Oct. 16.
•Report Cards – Oct. 18.
•Yearbook Purchase – through Dec. 19 at a cost of $22; after this darte the cost will be $25.
BANKS COUNTY MIDDLE SCHOOL
•Fall Break – Oct. 7-11.
•Veterans Day Program – Nov. 11.
•Heritage Day – Nov. 22.
The last day to register to vote in the November town election in Maysville is Oct. 7. Advance voting will start on Oct. 14.
The city election will be held on Tuesday, November 5, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
The incumbent mayor and Ward 2 councilman in Maysville will be facing opposition on the Nov. 5 ballot.
In the mayor’s race, incumbent Richard Presley will face Lynn Villyard.
In the Ward 2 city council seat, incumbent Junior Hardy and Susan Cooley will be on the ballot.
In Ward 4, incumbent Scott Harper was the only one to qualify.