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Wednesday, May 17, 2017


Roaten Is Officer Of Year; Smith Dispatcher of Year

Lankford Retires; Watson Named Captain



Chief Elizondo presents a plaque to retiring Capt. Tom Lankford, while new Captain Ricky Watson and Capt. John Brewer look on. (McFarlin photo).

Paris, Tenn.—At an emotional ceremony today, Paris Police honored retiring Captain Tom Lankford, recognized new Captain Ricky Watson, and named Patrolman Amber Roaten as Officer of the Year and David Smith as Dispatcher of the Year.

Lankford has been off duty since suffering a stroke in October, but was present at today’s ceremony, held at City Hall. Lankford had kind words to say about his former colleagues, noting that Chief Chuck Elizondo “is a hard-working man who cares about every officer and all of the citizens of Paris.”

Lankford said Watson has earned the promotion to captain. “He earned it starting way back”, he said.

He is retiring after 32 years on the job and said, “If I could spend 32 more years with you, I would.” Elizondo presented Lankford with a new badge as a retired officer, a plaque and a framed photo with signatures of all the police department.

In naming Roaten as Officer of the Year, Capt. John Brewer said, “She’s a real bulldog. She sets a very high bar.” Before being hired by the department, Roaten served in the Air Force and as a 911 Dispatcher. In addition to her other credentials, she is a certified police officer, is a certified first responder, and received a Life Saving Award in 2012.

In naming Smith as Dispatcher of the Year, Supervisor Angie Case noted the hard work that dispatchers do each day, especially noting the emergencies that the local dispatch has handled this year.

Smith is from Cottage Grove and began his career at dispatch in 2005. He helped to start the Henry County First Responder program.

In honor of National Peace Officers Memorial Week, the Paris Police Department each year combines National Peace Officers Memorial Day, National Police Week and Telecommunicators Honors.

City Manager Kim Foster, 911 Director Mark Archer and Judge Vicki Snyder spoke words of appreciation about the officers and dispatchers. Archer spoke of the toll that the job takes on dispatchers and Foster spoke of how proud she is to work with the local department. Snyder said, “I so appreciate all the work that all of you do.”

A table of honor was set up by Parking Officer Tammy Walker to honor peace officers who have lost their lives across the country.

Capt John Brewer presents Officer of Year plaque to Ptl. Amber Roaten, while Chief Elizondo looks on. (McFarlin photo).

    

 

Chief Elizondo, Supervisor Angie Case and Dispatcher of Year David Smith. (McFarlin photo).


Martin Man Arrested For Murder

Martin, Tenn.—Martin Police Investigators have arrested a Martin man for the April murder of 51-year-old Charles Graves.    

Khalil Taylor, age 26, has been charged with first degree murder and is being held in the Weakley County Detention Center.

On April 18, a home health worker found the victim unresponsive at his home at #70 Lester Lane. Graves was pronounced dead at the scene from a gunshot wound.                          


Webb Family Home Destroyed By Fire

Collection For Family Has Begun

 

Darren Webb at window while helping to battle blaze at his home. (Webb family photo).


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—A collection has begun for the family of Mansfield Firefighter Darren Webb, who lost their home Tuesday to a devastating fire.

The fire began after Webb, his wife, Cheryl, and three children left the home for the day, and the cause is still undetermined.

Donations are being accepted at Maplewood Baptist Church of clothing and household items, and monetary donations are being accepted at The Animal Doctor in both Paris and Camden. Darren Webb works at both the Paris and Camden offices of The Animal Doctor.

The fire at 2365 Mansfield Rd. began around 8 a.m. and by the time Mansfield Volunteer Fire Chief Wayne Webb arrived, the home was engulfed in flames. Wayne Webb lives just a short way down the road. Darren Webb is the Assistant Chief at the Mansfield Fire Department.

Mutual aid was provided by the Paris Fire Department. A crew from the Henry County EMS was on hand and treated a firefighter who was overcome with heat at the scene.

According to Maplewood Baptist Church officials, the best way to help the Webb family right now is with gift cards for clothing, shoes and food. Monetary donations are being collected so the family can fill prescriptions and fill other immediate needs.

Clothing also is being donated and sizes are: Darren, medium shirts, size 33 and 34 pants; children sizes shirts and pants, size 8, 10 and 5T. The older two children also could use pajamas. Shoes are needed, with Cheryl wearing size 9, Darren size 9 ½.

 

Titan One Missile On Permanent Display 

The Titan One Missile on display along with other military and NASA artifacts. (Shannon McFarlin photo).


Union City, Tenn.—The Discovery Park of America’s latest addition, a Titan One Missile, can be seen for miles around and the best news of all is that it is on permanent display. It took years for Discovery Park officials to successfully acquire it and it now is the main attraction for the park’s military and space exhibits, with numerous NASA artifacts now also on permanent display.

The 110 foot tall missile rivals the height of the park’s iconic Tower.  Viewing the missile is free for members, or for anyone with park admission, Tuesdays through Sundays from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.

Acquiring NASA artifacts was a pet project of Discovery Park Founder Robert Kirkland. According to Discovery Park officials, it took several years to finally get the appropriate documentation from the Smithsonian.  But, a little over a year ago, the missile, which originally cost the US Government $170,000,000, was donated to Discovery Park.

After getting the missile to Union City, Discovery Park’s CEO Jim Rippy developed a team of local experts to determine the best way to preserve and install the missile.  The team was comprised of engineer Bob Nichols, fabricators Richard Davidson and Jeff Greene, restorers David Ursery and Jeff Ursery and project leader, Jim Carmichael.  The team visited the famous USAF Museum in Dayton, Ohio. 

Over the course of the next nine months, Jeff and David Ursery of 2BR’s Restoration spent thousands of hours sanding, priming and painting the missile. 

The exhibit was completed with Discovery Park’s Ground’s crew adding some landscaping, and the IT Department created a special interactive component, whereby guests can push a button and smoke will come out of the bottom of the missile, simulating take-off.

Discovery Park of America opened November of 2013 and was founded by Robert Kirkland as a unique educational venue with many interactive and fun features like an Earthquake Simulator, Starship Theater and a unique observation Tower.  The 50-acre park is loaded with exhibits, and has been referred to as a miniature Smithsonian.  Consistently getting 5 stars on Trip Advisor, people drive for hours to visit the park and often purchase a two day ticket in order to see it all.  Discovery Park of America is located at 830 Everett Blvd., in Union City, TN.  The park’s website is www.discoveryparkofamerica.com and the phone number is 731-885-5455. 

 

Junior Livestock Weigh-In Set

Union City, Tenn.—The Obion County Junior Livestock Association’s Hog and Lamb Weigh-In will be held Saturday at the Obion County Fairgrounds.

Hogs will be weighed in between 8 and 11 a.m., while the lambs will be accepted from 11 to noon. Exhibitors must be in the 4-12th grades as of January 1 to be eligible to show. Contact the Obion County Extension Office for more info.

     


Tuesday, May 16, 2017


City Seeks PSSD Help With Pool Project

City Manager Kim Foster makes the presentation to the PSSD board. (McFarlin photo).


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—At the recommendation of Director of Schools Mike Brown, the Paris Special Schools District board of education took under advisement a request from the city of Paris to help the city pay for its ongoing project to replace the dehumidifier at the pool at the Paris Civic Center.

Brown told board members that a decision need not be made immediately. He noted that the dehumidifier has not worked for some time at the pool and he also noted that although PSSD is not obligated to help, Paris students use the pool “every single day, so I think we should be open minded when we listen to the request.”

City Manager Kim Foster requested that the PSSD commit to a certain amount each year over the course of a potential contract for the project. She said estimates are that the project will cost $500,000.

The dehumidier will need to be replaced, she said, and the city has been looking for grant opportunities with little success because the city of Paris “is not distressed enough” to qualify for the grants.

In her presentation before the board, Foster outlined some of the regular costs that the city has to maintain the pool and said, “I think it’s fair to ask the PSSD to help in some way with this process. I’m just asking for your consideration.”

Trane is project engineer and has hired Cary Henson of Jackson to assist with the project. Henson has been construction manager on many local school projects.

Board President Richard Edwards said, “My suggestion is we think about it and need for Mike and (Incoming Superintendent) Norma Gerrell to come back with a recommendation at the June meeting.”

Gerrell and Rhea Principal Sandra Paschall reported that PSSD has received a $30,000 grant for a Read To Be Ready program for Rhea School. Gerrell said the program will continue over the next four years.

In other business:

The board approved raising lunch prices by 10 cents. He noted that the last time lunch prices were increased was in 2012. “I want to keep our lunch prices as low as we can”, Brown said.

Brown also reported three candidates have been interviewed for the Curriculum Supervisor position to be vacated by Gerrell which she assumes the superintendent's position.


Harrelson Walking Trail Opens

 

Puryear, Tenn.—The new Walking Trail at Harrelson School in Puryear was inaugurated with a ribbon-cutting Tuesday afternoon, with Sheila Glisson, Kids’ corner Director, and Amber Ryan, Assistant Principal, cutting the ribbon. The school’s children took the first laps on the trail, which stretches all the way around the school building. The trail is open to the public and was funded through a grant. At today’s event, stands were set up for children and parents by the Family Resource Center, Carl Perkins Center, Henry County Schools, Head Start and Henry County Medical Center.

100s On Hand For Discovery Children’s Garden Opening

 

Children playing in the garden today. (McFarlin photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Union City, Tenn.—A steady stream of children, parents, students and teachers from all over our region arrived at Discovery Park of America today with one goal in mind: to see the park’s newest addition, the Children’s Discovery Garden.  

Ribbon-cutting for the $500,000 Children’s Discovery Garden was held early this morning and immediately children began playing in it—and that’s what it’s all about.

School buses full of students from all over our region of Tennessee, Kentucky and even as far away as Poplar Bluff, Mo., were arriving all day today to enjoy the new feature, which was funded by the Robert and Jenny Kirkland Foundation.

The Children’s Discovery Garden offers a treasure trove of what Discovery Park officials call “learning fun”, from the Rhapsody outdoor musical instruments, to the babbling brook; from the dinosaur fossil dig to the outdoor labyrinth classroom; from the giant chess/checker set to the fossils hidden in the rock structures.

Grounds Director John Watkins of Paris said while Discovery Park is not a children’s museum, it attracts children from near and far.  “We realized early on that we needed a place where children could dream and imagine, expend energy and enjoy free play while their caregivers could take a break while visiting the park,” Watkins said.  “Our entire team was anxious to create this space, and fortunately, the Kirkland Foundation agreed.”

Over a year in the works, the Children’s Discovery Garden was designed and developed by Recreational Concepts using many unique pieces of play equipment from Landscape Structures, according to Director Mary Nita Bondurant. Watkins oversaw the project for Discovery Park, with his plan to add topiaries, butterfly gardens, sensory and other gardens to both beautify and add to the educational value to the space. 

 The new space features a treehouse tower, a unique Zip Krooz, hillside slide, balance beams, log steppers, climbing rocks, corkscrew nets, saddle spinners, an Omni spinner and Rhapsody outdoor musical instruments. 

CEO Jim Rippy is excited about the opening of the Children’s Garden.  “It was the number one request by our visitors,” he said.  “Our grounds team has worked tirelessly to make this happen, in spite of several setbacks due to the weather,” he added.  “We believe that local families will want to purchase annual memberships and visit the park more often now that we have this amazing area for children to learn and play,” he added.

It is now available daily from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays, during the park’s normal hours. 

Visiting the Children’s Discovery Garden is free for anyone with an Annual Pass.  For all others, it is included in the park admission.  To find out more about Discovery Park of America, including their complete calendar of educational classes and events, visit the park’s website at www.discoveryparkofamerica.com .  Discovery Park of America is located at 840 Everett Blvd., Union City, TN ad is a unique collection of history, science, educational opportunities and fun. 

Playing on the giant checkerboard. (McFarlin photo).

Citizen’s Police Academy Is Graduated

Martin, Tenn.--The Martin Police Department recently graduated the 28th Session of the Citizen’s Police Academy. Members of the Martin community received their diplomas in a special ceremony held at the Martin Recreational Complex.

The Citizen’s Police Academy is a chance for citizens that live or work in Martin to get a first-hand view of the operations of the Martin Police Department. After graduating, citizens have a better understanding of what police officers face every day. The class met one night a week for ten weeks. Topics of instruction included use of force, undercover drug operations, crime scene investigation, DUI enforcement, criminal law, firearms, and other areas.

Also during the ten week class the participants were required to ride with a Martin Police officer at least two times during the course of the class. Over 500 citizens have graduated from the Citizen’s Police Academy program since its inception in 1993.

In photo: Front Row:  Debra Stringer, Lyndsey VanCleave, Raini George, Alexis Maher, Katerina Bradberry, Kevin Rogers, Tiffany Owens & DeAnna Chappell.

Standing in back row:  Faisal Alanazi, Amy Bynum, Ashley Bynum, Barry Tuck, Kelly Wilson, Josh Wilson, Vickie Hazlewood, Bethany Smith, Tommy Mount, Emily Perry, Larry Snider, Claire Wade, Billy Fuqua, Landy Fuqua, James Ketterman, Shelia Spencer & Gene Foster.


Jeep Jamboree Returns To LBL

Land Between The Lakes – Jeep enthusiasts will travel to Turkey Bay Off-Highway Vehicle Area at Land Between the Lakes, for the 20th Annual Jeep Jamboree, May 18-20, 2017, to put their vehicles and off-roading skills to the test in a guided, family-friendly off-roading adventure.


Visit https://jeepjamboreeusa.com/trips/land-between-the-lakes/ for more information on how to register. Turkey Bay is one of 32 Jeep Jamboree locations nationwide and is considered a family oriented four-wheel-drive adventure destination.


“We look forward to the Jeep Jamboree each year,” says Kyle Varel, Manager at Turkey Bay. “Event coordinators, trail guides and participants always seem to be the friendliest people on the trails. It’s great to catch up with folks who return and meet new Jeep enthusiasts every year.”


The event caters to every level of off-road expertise. Seasoned guides will assist each Jeep operator and their passengers as they navigate their way through the courses. Turkey Bay features wooded trails and challenge obstacles and supports other off-highway trail adventures. Participants can sign up for routes suited to meet their experience levels and vehicle specifications. Participants also have opportunities to experience unique woodland, wildlife and lakeshore views, all while building confidence behind the wheel and having fun out on the trails.

For more event information, visit https://jeepjamboreeusa.com/trips/land-between-the-lakes/.


Murray To Honor Police Officers

Murray, Ky.—The public is invited to a Police Memorial Service that will be held at Murray City Cemetery at 10 a.m. Wednesday, May 17. The service is sponsored by the Murray Police Department.

The Memorial Service is being conducted during National Police Week.  

The Murray Police Memorial Service will feature speeches by Mayor Jack Rose, State. Rep. Kenny Imes, and Murray State University President Dr. Bob Davies. The Murray Police Honor Guard and representatives from other law enforcement agencies will conduct a wreath and flag ceremony.


Henry County Eyes Eyesores

Paris, Tenn.—At a mostly routine meeting Monday night, the Henry County Commission took steps to tighten up an existing resolution aimed at cleaning up eyesores in the county.

County Mayor Brent Greer will be appointing a Health and Safety Standards Board, which will hear appeals from local property owners who have been found to have trash on their properties. The board will include one commissioner from each of the county’s districts.

The new regulations will allow for civil penalties to be assessed against property owners who do not maintain their properties.

Under the new regulations,  Sheriff Monte Belew and Road Supervisor Richie Chilcutt would have authority to seek remedies for eyesores in the county.

 

New Charge Added In Utility Pole Case

Paris, Tenn.—A new charge of stealing a car has been added to charges already filed against the Henry County woman who drove her vehicle into utility poles late Friday afternoon.

Margaret Ann Hammond, age 52, of 3703 Highway 79, already had been charged with DUI first offense and driving on a revoked license.

Now, she also has been charged with stealing the car she drove into the utility poles, knocking out power and disrupting traffic for several hours.


Monday, May 15, 2017


Tennessee's 2017 Economy Shows Robust Start
Nashville, Tenn. – Tennessee’s economy continues to grow with a robust start to 2017, according to a report released Secretary of State Tre Hargett.

There were 10,372 new entity filings in the first quarter of 2017, which represents an 8.7 percent increase over the same time last year. This marks the 22nd consecutive quarter of positive year-over-year growth. As of April 1, there were 259,282 active entities in Tennessee, representing a 5.2 percent increase compared to the first quarter of 2016.
“These strong numbers give us a good idea that Tennessee’s economy will continue to grow. It’s obvious that Tennessee has a climate that continues to attract new businesses,” said Hargett.
The Tennessee Quarterly Business and Economic Indicators report is created to provide a periodic snapshot of the state’s economy based on a variety of information, including new business data from the Division of Business Services.
Domestic firms account for 84.4 percent of all new entity filings, while foreign entities make up the remaining 15.6 percent.
Davidson County again led the way with the most initial filings among the state’s four largest counties with 2,395. Shelby County followed closely with 1,949.  
The state’s unemployment rate fell 3 percent in March from 5.3 percent to 5.1 percent. The state unemployment rate remains slightly above the U.S. rate of 4.5 percent.
 


Special Populations Fishing Tournament Set

Land Between The Lakes – The 40th Annual Special Populations Fishing Tournament will be hosted by Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area on Saturday, May 20 at Honker Lake, off Forest Service Road 138 near Woodlands Nature Station. Registration for the free tournament is from 8-9am; fishing is from 9am until 12pm. Prizes will be awarded for the heaviest string of fish.

Kentucky Lake Bass Club and the Knights of Columbus of Aurora will sponsor the tournament. This tournament develops the fishing skills of children and adults who are physically or mentally challenged.

“This is a fun day for volunteers, parents, caregivers, and especially the anglers,” commented Cathy Goode with Kentucky Lake Bass Club. “We encourage everyone to come out and enjoy this special event!”

Pre-registration is encouraged to ensure adequate supplies of poles and bait are on-hand. Call 270-924-2046 to pre-register or for more information. A registration form can be found online at http://www.landbetweenthelakes.us/…/2016SpecialPopulationFi….

To find more information about Land Between the Lakes, log on to the official website at www.landbetweenthelakes.us

 

Two Injured In UC Wreck

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Union City, Tenn.—A driver and passenger from Hickman were injured in a two-car accident which occurred Friday in Union City.

Driver Vanessa Esters, age 50, and her passenger Janice Bradshaw, age 52, were both transported to Baptist Memorial Hospital following the accident on West Main St. on Friday morning.

The driver of the second vehicle, Terry Roncali, age 61, of Hornbeak, was not injured.

According to the report, Esters was pulling into an address on West Main St. when she entered the path of Roncali’s vehicle. Roncali struck Esters’ car, sending it into a skid, which turned the vehicle around and causing it to leave the roadway and land in a field.

Union City Police noted in the report that they did not cite Esters at this time due to her injuries.

 

Arrest Made After Utility Poles Broken In Half

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—A Paris woman was arrested Friday for DUI after she drove into two utility poles on Chickasaw Road, disrupting power and causing traffic to be diverted for several hours. The utility poles were broken in half and Paris Board of Public Utility employees were called to the scene at 1101 Chickasaw Rd. for some four hours to repair and replace the poles.

Paris Police released the report on the accident Sunday.

Arrested was Margaret Ann Hammond, age 52, of 3703 Highway 79. She was charged with DUI first offense and driving on a revoked license.

After the accident late Friday afternoon, Hammond was taken to the emergency room at Henry County Medical Center, where blood was drawn.

 

Three Arrested On Burglary, Drug Charges

Paris, Tenn.—Three men were charged by the Henry County Sheriff’s Office with both burglary and drug charges over the weekend and will appear in court on Tuesday morning.

Corporal Blake Jenkins arrested the three early Saturday morning at the intersection of East Wood and Blakemore Streets. Arrested were Blake Swayne, age 29, of Hopkinsville; Brice Williams Lockhart, age 19, of 111 Irvine St., Paris; and Rodney Avant, age 39, of 115 Wynn St., Paris.

Swayne was charged with aggravated burglary, possession of marijuana with intent to sell and simple possession of an opioid. Lockhart and Avant were charged with possession of marijuana.

Swayne already was wanted on a charge of stealing items from Swayne’s mother’s home on Irvine St. His accomplice in that burglary was Taylor Kendall, age 22, of Foundry Hill Rd. in Puryear and she was arrested earlier. 



Sunday, May 14, 2017


Update: 

Man Charged In Sex Abuse Case Is Former Officer
Arrest Follows Five-Hour Standoff

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Murray, Ky.– The Kentucky State Police has confirmed to WENK/WTPR that the Murray man who was arrested on numerous sex abuse charges involving a minor is a former police officer.

KSP Senior Trooper Jody Cash confirmed that Joseph A. Lawrence, age 55 of Murray, formerly worked both for the Calloway County Sheriff’s Office and the Murray State University police department.

After a five-hour standoff, Kentucky State Troopers arrested Lawrence early this morning and charged him with 20 counts of first-degree sexual abuse and one count of first-degree sodomy involving a minor.

The KSP Mayfield Post received a report on May 13 of the sexual assault of a minor. Preliminary investigation has shown Lawrence, between 2014 and 2016, engaged in numerous sexual encounters with a child under the age of 12, according to the KSP press release.

Lawrence was located at approximately 8:30 p.m. Saturday on Peach Orchard Road. After an approximate 5 hour standoff, he was taken into custody without further incident.

The investigation is continuing by Detective Michael Robichaud. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Kentucky State Police Post 1 at 270-856-3721 or anonymously at 1-800-222-5555.




Saturday, May 13, 2017


Rising Water Closes Piers, Beaches At Paris Landing

On the flooded roadway, a lady fishes and Canada Geese stroll. (McFarlin photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Buchanan, Tenn.—Beaches and piers are underwater and roads are closed at Paris Landing State Park due to high water. That hasn’t stopped people from boating, fishing and enjoying the park, but it is confusing the Canada Geese who are able to swim across roads and parking areas.

State Park Manager Joan Williams said the flooding began late this week because the TVA has been holding back water at Kentucky Dam to control the floodwaters in Missouri. Reducing the water releases at Kentucky Dam will increase the water level at Kentucky Lake, but it is succeeding in controlling the flooding at the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers.

Currently, Kentucky Lake at Paris Landing is at 363 feet, way above summer pool levels of 359 feet.

Williams said the three-day forecast from the TVA shows that the water level will begin to decrease on Kentucky Lake beginning tomorrow. “It shows that it will be at 363 feet at midnight tonight, then going to 362.5 feet tomorrow and then just above 360 on Monday. So, TVA is gradually easing down the lake levels and it’s going to help that there is no rain projected for the next few days.”

People who live on the lake have been asked to move any equipment and property that could be impacted by the rising lake levels.

The piers being underwater didn't deter dedicated fishermen. (McFarlin photo).

 

Hundreds Turn Out For A-P Yard Sales

Paris, Tenn.—With perfect weather pitching in, the second annual Atkins-Porter Historic Neighborhood Yard Sale was a definite success, with hundreds of people shopping and strolling through the streets for all the sales Saturday. A total of 16 yard sales were registered and items sold at the sales ran the gamut from record albums to house plants to homemade craft items and more. And there were a couple of bake sales thrown into the mix. In photo, Annette Douglas and Cherry Boyd wait on a customer. (Shannon McFarlin photos).
 

Cardboard Regatta A Big Hit Again

Union City, Tenn.—Hundreds were on hand Saturday for one of the most popular events at Discovery Park of America each year--the fourth annual Cardboard Regatta. Vaughn Electric came out big winners, winning first place for a multiple rider boat and first place in single rider boat. The DaVinci boat from Discovery Park won most creative. The event features boat races in homemade cardboard boats. The complete list of winners will be announced later by Discovery Park. (Photo by Brent Hinson).


Quota Honors Derby Day


Photo: From left, Wanda McCord, Mary Alice Campbell, Lynne Davis, Patricia Bailey, Cheryl Wilson, Peggy Owen, Judy Sloan, Peggy Werz and Diane Nelson.

 

Paris, Tenn.—This week’s Paris Quota Club meeting was special, as everyone was wearing their Derby hats in honor of the Kentucky Derby.

President Donna Winders chose the top five hats and they were worn by Jackie Jones, Stephanie Tayloe, Jen Snow, Beth Watkins and Suzanne Richter.  Jackie Jones won the Prettiest Hat Award and the Most Original Hat Award went to DeLaina Green.  There were nine members wearing hats that belong to Bethel Williams, the oldest member of Quota.

Donna Winders presented the Stars in Our Crown award to Watkins for her fundraising and community efforts.

Suzanne Richter announced that the club will be presenting twelve $1,000 scholarships to high school seniors and continuing college students.  Recipients and their guests will be presented at the May 24th meeting.

Orientation packets are being prepared and will be available for each member and new members at an upcoming meeting.

Brenda Hosford announced that Phoebe Culpepper will be attending the Soddy Daisy Diabetic Camp in June.  She is 12 years old and has been diabetic since the age of 2.

Empty medicine bottles are still being collected. 

Vice-President, Pat Bailey installed a new member, Lynne Davis, who is sponsored by Jane Sinnema.

 

Mayfield Dispatchers Are Graduated

From left, are:Bruce Keenon, Post 12 Frankfort; Melody Brown, Post 1 Mayfield; Kelsey Wood, Post 12 Frankfort; Katelyn Morvel, Post 3 Bowling Green; Bryan Mack, Post 1 Mayfield; Brandi Chase, Post 6 Dry Ridge; Eric Bruck, Post 8 Morehead; Mahala Lewis, Post 12 Frankfort; Rebekah Carey, Post 6 Dry Ridge; Alisha Reed, Post 1 Mayfield; Johnathan Pendley, Post 3 Bowling Green and Whitney Engle, Post 3 Bowling Green.


Frankfort, Ky.--Three Mayfield dispatchers were among 12 Kentucky State Police telecommunicators recognized Friday at graduation ceremonies for the 10th class of the agency’s in-house Telecommunications Academy.

Representing nine agency posts, the group began its studies on April 3, 2017 at the KSP Training Academy in Frankfort. The course provided 236 hours of instruction during a six-week period.  

The three Mayfield post graduates are: Alisha Reed, Bryan Mack, and Melody Brown. Other graduates were from the Dry Ridge, Morehead and Frankfort posts.

To watch a short video about KSP Telecommunicators, visit www.kentuckystatepolice.org





Friday, May 12, 2017


Local Area Men Arrested In Prostitution Sting

 

Dyersburg, Tenn.– Several area men, including one from Union City, and others from Sharon, Trenton, Kenton and Tiptonville, were arrested in Dyersburg on prostitution-related charges. Twelve men in all were arrested during the two-day operation by Special Agents with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, the Dyersburg Police Department, and Homeland Security Investigations.

The Dyersburg operation, called “Operation Someone Like Me”, took place this week and focused on identifying potential victims of human trafficking, while targeting those attempting to purchase illicit sex.

Men from the local area arrested included Quinton Kimble of Union City, Jeremy Gattis, Trenton; Ricky Green, Sharon, Nick Hayes, Tiptonville; and Brad Hobbs of Kenton, all charged with patronizing prostutition.

Over the two-day period, undercover Special Agents posted three ads online each day. In that time, there were 197 unique contacts made to these ads, and more than 4-thousand messages were exchanged between undercover Agents and potential johns/ traffickers. A total of 12 men responded to those ads and attempted to purchase sex from a prostitute.

This is the 9th time the TBI has worked with partner local agencies across the state to help identify, investigate and prosecute trafficking. Dyersburg Police Chief Steven Isbell’s agency participated in this most recent operation. “The message is clear; we will not tolerate the sexual exploitation of any person in our community,” said Isbell. “Our responsibility as a community is to ensure that no child, or adult, falls victim to a sexual predator.” 

Ten individuals were given citations. Two were physically arrested; their booking photos are below.  The others arrested were from Memphis, Newbern, and Enville, Tennessee; Rienzi, MS., and Columbus, Ohio.


Geranium Sale Continues Today

 

Paris, Tenn.—There was a steady flow of customers Thursday for the annual FFA Geranium Sale for the Henry County Healthcare Foundation. The sale continues today until all the geraniums are sold out. They are being sold at the Henry County Medical Center parking lot and the First Bank Branch on Mineral Wells Ave. in Paris. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

 

Kustoff Champions West Tennessee Farmers

 

Kustoff, right, with Dyer County Farmer Jimmy Moody.

Milan, Tenn. – U.S. Representative David Kustoff (R-8th District) this week visited with ten groups and hundreds of constituents representing the agriculture community in the Eighth Congressional District.

“Agriculture is the life blood of West Tennessee, and the farming industry continues to evolve with innovation from both the private and public sectors,” said Kustoff. “Protecting our growers and preparing our future farmers is critical to the economic prosperity of the 8th Congressional District. I want to thank the educators, students, retailers and farmers for taking time to meet with me during their busy season, and I promise to always be a strong advocate for their concerns in Washington.”

A full list of Congressman Kustoff’s visits is below:

Monday, May 8, 2017:

-       Helena Chemical Company Headquarters – Shelby County

-       Helena Chemical Distribution Facility – Fayette County

-       Cutliff Cattle Farm – Fayette County

-       University of Tennessee at Martin, Institute of Agriculture and Applied Sciences – Weakley County

-       Chester Farms – Weakley County

Tuesday, May 9, 2017:

-       Covington High School’s Future Farmers of America – Tipton County

-       Ripley High School’s Future Farmers of America – Lauderdale County

-       Moody Farms – Dyer County

-       Mid-South Farmers Co-op and Alamo Farm Bureau– Crockett County

-       Tennessee Tractor and Supply – Haywood County

 

Church Pavilion, Housing Units Approved

 

Planners listen to reports at Thursday's meeting. (McFarlin photo).


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—At a busy session Thursday night, the Paris Municipal Regional Planning Commission conducted back-to-back meetings for both the planning commission and the board of zoning appeals (members are the same for both boards).

Planners approved a minor site plan which will allow Trinity United Methodist Church to construct a pavilion on an existing concrete slab on church property on Wilson St.

The church was destroyed by fire last year and a new church has been built in its place. The pavilion will be for church use for events. City staff said the pavilion will not affect parking or drainage.

Planners also approved a site plan for a multi-family development at the corner of North Market Street and Mimosa Drive submitted by Paul Harber. Harber’s request shows he is planning to construct two 2,720 square foot buildings that will face Mimosa Drive. Each of the buildings will house four units.

Once again revisiting the issue of overseeing home occupations within the city limits, planners approved a revision to the zoning ordinance governing the home businesses. Under the revision, customers can no longer come to the home businesses and commercial trucks cannot deliver goods to home businesses.

At the BZA meeting conducted before the planning meeting, members approved a variance request from Matthew Goetz of 410 Hooper Street. Goetz was at the meeting and said he wants to locate a double wide manufactured home on the lot. He sought a variance so that he could situate the home differently than the existing ordinance allows because of its size.


KSP To Accept More Trooper Applications

Frankfort, Ky.– The Kentucky State Police will now be able to accept more applications than ever thanks to new hiring qualifications established by the legislature. Anyone who possesses a high school diploma or GED and has three years of work experience now qualifies to apply for employment as a KSP Trooper.

Prior to the new guideline, applicants were required to have 60 hours of college credit, two years of active duty military experience, or two years of certified police officer experience. These qualifications will still apply by generating bonus points for applicants in the selection process.

Sgt. Brad Arterburn, commander of the KSP Recruitment Branch, believes this is a positive step for the agency. “By taking applicants with a high school diploma or GED, we should greatly increase number of applicants we have to choose from,” he said. “That will ensure that we can choose the very best to become our next troopers.”

 KSP is now accepting applications for Cadet Class 96, which is scheduled to begin in early 2018. All application materials must be completed and returned to the Kentucky State Police Recruitment Branch by Friday, June 23, 2017. Town hall meetings will take place around the state in May and June to provide more information on the application process as well as the day-to-day duties of a state trooper.

For more information, visit the Kentucky State Police Recruitment website at http://www.kentuckystatepolice.org/recruit/process.html. Applicants may also call the Recruitment office toll-free at 1-866-360-3165 during office hours from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (ET) Monday through Friday or leave a message any other time.

 

Migratory Bird Day Is Saturday 

Land Between The Lakes – The public is invited to participate in programs and activities celebrating International Migratory Bird Day from 10am-5pm Saturday at Woodlands Nature Station in Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area. Native plants will also be sold as a fundraiser to support the care of Nature Station’s resident rescued wildlife. Admission is $5 for ages 13 and up; $3 for ages 5-12; ages 4 and under are free.


“This day honors the spectacle and struggles of our feathered friends who migrate between North America and the tropics,” says Nature Station Lead Interpreter John Pollpeter. “Meet a Golden Eagle from Raptor Rehabilitation of Kentucky, peek in on some baby birds, enjoy kid-friendly crafts, games and more! We’ll be spotlighting nature’s most amazing travelers with special programs throughout the day.”


Program schedule: https://www.landbetweenthelakes.us/…/migration-celebration…/
• 10am-4pm Backyard Bird Scavenger Hunt
• 10am-4pm Hummingbird Migration Game
• 11am-1pm Bird Kids Craft
• 1-1:45pm Live Golden Eagle Program
• 2:30pm Baby Birds!
• 3:30pm Dinnertime for Red Wolves
• 4:30pm Parade of Raptors

Beans to Blossoms Nursery of Murray, Kentucky and Ironweed Native Plant Nursery of Columbia, Kentucky provide plants for the native plant sale. Native plants will be available for purchase Saturday, May 13-Sunday, May 21, 2017.
To find more information about Land Between the Lakes, log on to the official website at www.landbetweenthelakes.us or call 1-800-LBL-7077 or 270-924-2000. 





Thursday, May 11, 2017


No Spilt Milk When Tractor-Trailer Overturns

                                                                             (Walter Smothers photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Huntingdon, Tenn.—A tractor-trailer rig loaded with 3,600 one-gallon bottles of milk overturned in Huntingdon this morning, prompting a lengthy operation of unloading and saving what milk could be saved. The Huntingdon Police and Fire and Rescue were on the scene from 4 a.m. when the accident occurred until 2:30 p.m. this afternoon.

Officers were called to the intersection of Veterans Drive (Huntingdon By-pass) and Lexington Street. A tractor trailer rig operated by Howard Baer trucking ran into the median and overturned.

The driver said his left front steer tire dropped the edge of the pavement causing the truck and trailer to go left into the median, according to Huntingdon Public Safety Director Walter Smothers.

The truck had been loaded in Fulton Ky. Smothers said the milk had to be off loaded one gallon at a time onto another trailer. “This was done by inmates from the county jail and a portion of the milk, that could not be sold, was donated to the jail to be consumed by the inmates,” Smothers said.

The driver, whose name has not yet been released, was not injured in the crash and no other vehicles were involved. Police remained on the scene until 2:30 p.m. when the truck and trailer were pulled back up on the pavement and towed from the scene.  


Cottage Grove Burglar Arrested

Cottage Grove, Tenn.—A Cottage Grove man has been arrested for the string of burglaries that have plagued the tiny community for the past several weeks.

The Henry County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Division has arrested and charged Ricky Lee Newell with seven counts of aggravated burglary and seven counts of theft of property.

During a lengthy investigation Newell was developed as a suspect in the recent rash of burglaries in the Cottage Grove area, according to Chief Deputy Adam Jenkins. “Throughout the investigation it was learned that Newell had been mainly targeting vacant homes and elderly people’s homes”, along with homes still belonging to deceased people.

“As Newell continued his crime spree, he began entering people’s everyday homes disregarding age or whether or not the house appeared to be vacant,” Jenkins said. “Newell stole large amounts of property which included lots of jewelry, musical equipment, guns and many other items.”
More charges are anticipated.

Sheriff Monte Belew said, “The Cottage Grove area is a small tight knit community where things like this don’t happen every day. Today is an especially great day for us to have put an end to this crime wave and have the guy responsible behind bars. Hopefully the good people of Cottage Grove can rest a little easier.”

Newell is currently being held on a $75,000 bond and will appear today, May 11 in General Sessions court for arraignment


Lakewood Evacuation Drill Cancelled

Paris, Tenn.—Due to the possibility of inclement weather Friday, the Lakewood evacuation drill that had been scheduled has now been cancelled. The drill will be held in the fall.


Threatening Behavior Toward Kustoff Draws Arrest

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Martin, Tenn.—An Obion County woman has been charged with felony reckless endangerment after she allegedly tried to run a vehicle carrying Congressman David Kustoff and his aide off the road and began striking his vehicle and screaming at him. The incident followed a Town Hall on the University of Tennessee campus in Martin. 

Investigators with the Weakley County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Unit arrested Wendi L. Wright, age 35, of 4004 Hubert Harris Road after the incident that took place Monday after the Town Hall.

According to Captain Randall McGowan, it is alleged that Wright followed a vehicle occupied by Kustoff and his aide Marianne Dunavant while they were driving down Hwy. 45 south of Martin. “Wright placed the occupants in fear of being forced off the roadway,” McGowan said. “They turned onto Old Troy Road and into a driveway of a person they were familiar with.”

At that point, Wright exited her vehicle and began screaming and striking the windows of Kustoff’s vehicle and at one point reached inside the vehicle. “She then stood in front of their vehicle in an attempt to keep them blocked in”, McGowan said.

A 911 call was placed but Wright left the area before deputies arrived.

McGowan said Wright was identified after she posted details on the encounter on Facebook. She was located by Obion County Sheriff’s Deputies and taken into custody on the Weakley Co. arrest warrant.

Wright was released from jail after posting the $1000 bond. She will be arraigned on Monday in Weakley Co. General Sessions Court.



Martin Man Arrested After Delivery Of Package

Martin, Tenn.—A Martin man was arrested after a package containing illegal drugs and paraphernalia was delivered to his residence Wednesday afternoon.

At approx. 3:23 pm, officers of the Martin Police Department responded to 528 Ellis St. Apt. 223 in reference to a tip pertaining to a suspicious package having been delivered to the residence.  Upon arrival, officers made contact with Dennis C. Polythress, age 20, of Martin, and questioned him about the package. 

Polythress did give officers consent to search the residence and several illegal drug items were located.  Officers seized approx. 22 grams of marijuana, 62 edible marijuana gummies, 3 bottles of THC oil, THC wax, 4 syringes of THC oil and several items of drug paraphernalia.  Polythress was charged with Simple Possession and Unlawful Drug Paraphernalia.   


Murray State To Remain In OVC

Murray, Ky.—Murray State University will be staying in the Ohio Valley Conference after all.

Murray State was notified that the Missouri Valley Conference opted not to invite Murray State to join the MVC. The MVC had been looking to replace Wichita State for the 2017-2018 school year and had been looking at four schools: Murray State, Valparaiso, Milwaukee and Nebraska-Omaha. The MVC has announced it will be inviting Valaparaiso to join.

After learning Murray State would not get an invitation to join the Missouri Valley Conference, Murray State Director of Athletics Allen Ward released the following statement:

"Today I was notified that Murray State will not be receiving an invitation to join the Missouri Valley Conference.  I am in no way disappointed by the news or have any regrets being involved in the process. The upcoming season provides Racer fans with some incredible opportunities to follow their team, impact the success of the conference, and again prove why Murray State is one of the finest mid-major programs in the country.  There are so many good things happening here, I couldn’t be more excited about the upcoming year and the future of this program."

 

Puryear Woman Struck By Vehicle

Murray, Ky.—A Puryear woman was injured Tuesday when she was struck by a vehicle in Murray.

Francine Norman, age 71, was walking behind a vehicle in the parking lot behind a South 12th Street business when Derick Evans, age 23, of Hazel began backing out of his parking space and struck her.

According to Murray Police Sgt. Brant Shutt, Evans did not see Norman behind him. EMS and the Murray Fire Department responded and Norman was transported to the Murray-Calloway Co. Hospital for treatment of injuries.

Evans was cited for having no insurance.

 

Larry Gatlin Tickets Are Selling Fast

Huntingdon, Tenn.—The 2016-2017 Dixie Live Concert Series ends on a high note when Grammy Award Winner Larry Gatlin takes the stage Saturday, June 17, at 2 p.m. at The Dixie in Huntingdon.

But anyone interested should buy their tickets fast—there are only 50 more tickets left to the show.

With his brothers Steve and Rudy, Gatlin has been dazzling audiences for more than 60 years. The Gatlin Brothers began their careers singing Gospel Music and Larry Gatlin has become known as much for his song-writing as his performances over the years.

Tickets for Larry Gatlin’s solo performance are $25 each and are available at the box office in downtown Huntingdon by calling 731 986 2100 and online at www.dixiepac.net.

 

UC Man Sentenced For Exploitation Of Minor

Paris, Tenn.—A Union City man was sentenced to serve jail time following his guilty plea on a charge of sexual exploitation of a minor who lives in Henry County.

Jonathan Allen Halliday, age 35, was arrested in Henry County in February. He pleaded guilty to sending nude photos of himself to a teenage girl on multiple occasions in October of 2016.

Appearing in Henry County Circuit Court, Halliday was sentenced by Judge Donald Parish to serve three years in the Department of Corrections. Specifically, Halliday will serve 120 days in continuous confinement, with the balance on state probation. He also was ordered to register as a sex offender.

Doug Cook Honored At UTM

Doug Cook (center), professor and chair, University of Tennessee at Martin Department of Visual and Theatre Arts, was selected as the university’s Featured Faculty Scholar for the spring 2017 semester. He is pictured with Dr. Jerald Ogg, university provost, and Dr. Lynn Alexander, dean, College of Humanities and Fine Arts.

Martin, Tenn. – Doug Cook, professor and chair, University of Tennessee at Martin Department of Visual and Theatre Arts, has been selected as the university’s Featured Faculty Scholar for the spring 2017 semester. A selection of Cook’s professional work is on display in the Paul Meek Library and open for public viewing.

Cook is a Martin resident and has worked extensively with community theatres in the Weakley and Obion County areas.

Cook joined the UT Martin faculty in 1984 and has since risen through the ranks of assistant, associate and full professor in addition to serving as director and production designer for UT Martin’s Vanguard Theatre. He holds a bachelor’s degree from UT Martin and a Master of Fine Arts degree from Memphis State University.

Since joining the UT Martin faculty, Cook has overseen the production design for more than 101 theatrical presentations. He has also created work for several theatres and playhouses in the region. Cook has been involved extensively with presentations and workshops for students, theatre professionals, community members and educators over the years.

 

Spring Preview Day For High School Students

Martin, Tenn. – High school students and their families are invited to find out what it’s like to be a Skyhawk on May 13 during the University of Tennessee at Martin’s final Spring Preview Day.

Attendees will find out about financial aid and scholarships, student organizations and housing options, as well as speak to faculty members and ask questions about potential areas of study. Families will also be able to speak with current students and tour UT Martin’s campus, which is a Level I Certified Arboretum.

The day will begin with registration and an administrative fair from 9-9:30 a.m. in the Boling University Center. An official welcome will start at 9:30, followed by a student panel discussion at 10. Departmental visits will begin at 10:45 and campus tours will start at 11:30.

Visit utm.edu/springpreview to register. There is no fee to attend.

For more information, contact the Office of Undergraduate Admissions at 731-881-7020 or by email at admitme@utm.edu.

 

CG Metal Pick-Up Day Set

Cottage Grove, Tenn.—The Cottage Grove City-Wide Metal Pick-Up Day has been set for Saturday, June 17, with the rain date set for June 21.

Any kind of metal can be picked up. All pieces must be at the curbside/front yard that morning for pickup.

At Tuesday’s busy meeting of the Cottage Grove Legislative Council, Fireman Larry Niemi reported the fire siren activation has been updated. He said weather conditions affected the procedure and it will continue.

Councilman Matthew McClure reported on the drainage issue on Poplar and Elm Streets. He will contact the county road supervisor for further assistance.

Niemi, who also owns TJ General Store, asked council to waive the monthly rental amount requested in the proposed new contract. The request was granted with Councilman John Weiher abstaining.

The proposed new budget was unanimously approved on first reading. Proposed Income and Expenses are estimated at $55,708. State Street Aid is estimated at $1801.68.


Fundraiser Set In CG Saturday

Cottage Grove, Tenn.--A joint effort fundraiser for Cottage Grove Volunteer Fire Department and Party Bouncing Jump will be held this Saturday, May 13, at Cardinal Park in Cottage Grove. It begins at 10 a.m. and will include bounce houses and concessions.




Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Large Crowd Enjoys “Taking It To The Streets”

Paris Patrolman Jordan Klutts gets to know the kids at the event.(Shannon McFarlin photo).

Paris, Tenn.—A large crowd of Paris Special Schools District students, parents, teachers, school officials and Henry County first responders was on hand Tuesday for the last “Taking It To The Streets” event for the school year. The event was held at Inman School and featured a skit about the importance of 911, free hot dogs and chips, free books, and tours of the EMS ambulances, Paris Police cars, Rescue Squad vehicles and visits with County Sheriff’s Deputy Stacey Bostwick and his K9 Rowdy. The Air Evac helicopter also landed in the football field at the event. The “Taking It To The Streets” event began at Rhea School and have expanded to include the entire PSSD district.


Chad Howard of 911 and Assistant Rhea Principal Lynda Searcy in the 911 skit.(McFarlin photo).

 

New Water Slide Dedication Set

Gerrell, Lawrence, Foster To Take First Dips 

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—Paris Mayor Carlton Gerrell—along with City Parks and Recreation Director Tony Lawrence and City Manager Kim Foster—will be taking the first trips on the new water slide at the city of Paris pool at a dedication ceremony and ribbon-cutting set for 4:30 p.m. May 23.

Work will be done today on construction of the water slide. Personnel from Perfect Settings of Columbia, Tenn., has been busy for several weeks constructing the slide, which features three large tubes with constantly flowing water for people to move through and into the pool.

As always, the pool will be open for the public on Memorial Day.

Lawrence said the city also received another “Local Heroes Grant” from Lowe’s Home Improvement in Paris, which has been renovating and updating the restrooms. City workers also have been re-painting areas of the pool.

The pool complex also features beach volleyball.

Pool prices will increase this summer from $3-$6 for the daily fee at the pool, which is located at Eiffel Tower Park located off of Patriot Ave. in Paris.


Kustuff Visits UTM

Martin, Tenn.- – Congressman David Kustoff (R-8th District, pictured right) visited the University of Tennessee at Martin on May 8 to tour the university’s teaching farm, Veterinary Health Technology Program facilities and the mobile energy classroom project. He also observed the university’s use of drones to monitor cover crops. Kustoff has represented Tennessee’s 8th Congressional District since assuming office Jan. 3, 2017. He fills the seat previously held by Stephen Fincher. (UTM photo).


Annual Cardboard Regatta Is Saturday

 Union City, Tenn.--Are you ready for the Battle of the Boats?! Cardboard Boats, that is.

The 4th Annual Cardboard Boat Regatta will be held at Discovery Park in Union City on Saturday. Boats can register up until the day of the event for $25, and $35 day-of registration.

Registration is at 9 a.m., with inspection of the homemade cardboard boats at 9:30. A captain’s meeting will be held at 10 with the event beginning at 11 a.m.

Prizes are awarded for most creativity, most spectacular sinking and most spirit.

 

Superhero Brunch Set For Saturday

Union City, Tenn.—The Union City J’Cettes will host its second annual Superheroes and Princesses Brunch from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday at the Obion County Fairgrounds.

The event includes the brunch, meeting with your favorite Superheroes and Princesses, makeovers, games, crafts and prizes.

The event benefits the Obion County Walk of Hope.

Admission for 16 and under is $15 for food and all the activities and for 17 and over is $5 for the food ticket.

 

Lakewood Evacuation Drill Set

Paris, Tenn.--A full-scale evacuation of Lakewood School is scheduled for Friday, May 12 at 11:30. The drill will simulate a gas leak. This will be a practice in evacuating all students and staff to the school’s safe location. Students and staff will return to the Lakewood campus for normal dismissal.





Tuesday, May 9, 2017


Public Input Sought On 641 Widening

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The Tennessee Department of Transportation is seeking public input on its proposed highway widening project on U.S. 641 north of Paris.

TDOT is seeking public comment until May 30. According to the public notice posted by TDOT, the project involving the section which would run from Rison Street to near Smith Road is now entering its construction phase. The section is approximately 2.66 miles.

According to the notice, the proposed project would widen the existing roadway to a five-lane curb and gutter section with four, 12-foot travel lanes. The notice states the propsed roadway improvements are “needed to address safety, geometric and operational deficiencies.”

The project—including an overall project which proposed to at some point in the future widen the highway from Paris to Murray—has been under discussion at Paris City Commission meetings for several years. Paris Economic Development Director Jennifer Morris said TDOT is seeking to accept bids on the project by the end of the summer.


State Library Awards Funds To Local Libraries

Nashville, Tenn. – Three local public libraries are recipients of grants from the Tennessee State Library and Archives. The state is awarding more than $337,000 in library technology training grants to 45 public libraries across the state.

The grants will provide libraries in the Tennessee Regional Library System state funding for new laptops, software and technology training within their communities. Each grant is matched with at least 10-percent in local funds.

Local libraries receiving awards are: Obion County Library in Union City, $8,793.90; W.G. Rhea Public Library in Paris, $9,000; and the C.E. Weldon Library in Martin, $8,592.

"Libraries aren't just about books anymore. They are technology hubs, especially in underserved communities. We know providing updated laptops and training will ensure every Tennessean has the resources and skills they need to work on school projects, apply for jobs or conduct the same business many of us do online every day," said Secretary of State Tre Hargett. "Access is something many of us take for granted."

The grants, which are state funds distributed by the Secretary of State's office, are intended to help residents improve their digital literacy. The grants have a similar mission as the Tennessee Broadband Accessibility Act passed by the General Assembly and signed into law by Governor Haslam in April.


Tourism Bringing Millions To Henry County

Paris, Tenn.—Tourism in Henry County is big business.

Tourism in Henry County generated $55.55 million in direct spending in the county in 2015, up .07% over 2014.  Based on a report generated by the U.S. Travel Association, Henry County ranked 27th out of 95 counties in the State of Tennessee for direct tourist spending, according to Henry County Alliance CEO David Hamilton.

There are over 300 jobs related to the tourism industry in the county, generating $8.93 million in worker income and paychecks.  “The tourism industry is a vital part of our economy and saves every household in Henry County $616 in state and local taxes,” Hamilton said.

On an average day, tourist spending in Henry County generated $28,712 in combined state and local taxes and $24,466 in worker paychecks.

Since 2010, tourist spending in Henry County has increased from $46.44 million to $55.55 million in 2015, the most recent figures provided by the U.S. Travel Association.  “It is obvious the impact the Tennessee River Resort Act funds have had on our ability to attract more tourism to our County,” Hamilton said.

Over 7,000 overnight stays will be generated this year by the various events supported by the revenues generated thru the Tennessee River Resort Act.  These overnight stays are a result of us attracting events on Kentucky Lake, such as the Costa Bassmaster High School Championship, Cabella’s Collegiate Big Bass Bash, Kayak Bass Fishing, Triton Owners Tournament and Boss Hoss Motorcycle Rally.

“Our most recent event attracted 569 kayak anglers for the Kayak Bass Fishing tournament, an event that will return again in 2018 with a $100,000 first place payout,” Hamilton said.  “It is believed this event could grow to over 700 kayak anglers next year, making it the largest kayak event in the country.”


Holt Votes No On State Budget

Nashville, Tenn.—State Rep. Andy Holt (R-Dresden) is one of only two state legislators who voted no on the $37B state budget Friday.

Joining Rep. Holt in voting no was Democrat G.A. Hardaway of Memphis. The budget passed the House 83-2, after passing the Senate earlier.

Holt strongly opposed the measure, saying, “That’s not why the people of my district sent me to Nashville.”

HC Dems To Meet

Paris, Tenn.—The Henry County Democratic Party will hold its next regular meeting at 6 p.m. Thursday at Paris City Hall. The public is invited to attend.

The Democratic Women will hold a work session on Saturday, May 13. RSVP to Sharon Fields at 731 924 4007. Pizza will be served over lunch.




Monday, May 8, 2017


Robison Trades Tiara For UTM Diploma

 

Hannah Robison hugs UTM Chancellor Keith Carver at Saturday's graduation. (UTM photo).


Martin, Tenn. – Former Miss Tennessee Hannah Robison of Springville added a diploma to her belongings—belongings that already included the Miss Tennessee crown for 2015—when she appeared on stage at UT Martin Saturday for graduation ceremonies.

On this occasion, she was trading her tiara and ball gown for black commencement robes and honors cords as she received her bachelor’s degree in chemistry during the standing-room only ceremony. Robison also competed in the Miss America contest. Robison was selected as the People’s Choice contestant during the national Miss America competition in September 2015 and ultimately finished top-seven for the title. However, she will go down in history as the first Miss Tennessee to win the Miss America STEM Scholarship, which totals $5,000 and is awarded to a contestant enrolled in a declared field of study in science, technology, engineering or mathematics.

Robison was an active member of the UT Martin campus community long before donning her first tiara.

She encourages incoming students to take advantage of the college environment to find their own opportunities, even if they have to step outside their comfort zones and try something new.

“My year as Miss Tennessee was filled with opportunities that I would not have been able to find anywhere else,” she said. “As Miss Tennessee, I worked for Governor Bill Haslam as his spokesperson for character education; I traveled over 80,000 miles and spoke to over 50,000 school children. I was able to highlight my work with the Arthritis Foundation on national television, and I was able to promote UT Martin across the entire state of Tennessee. The public speaking opportunities I had as Miss Tennessee and the people that I was able to meet have prepared me for my future.”

Robison was also recognized as one of three USA gold medalists for the Duke of Edinburgh International Award, introduced to the pageant in 2013. This accolade was first given in the United Kingdom in 1956 and today is the world’s leading youth achievement award, available to qualifying young people 14-24 years old.

When all was said and done, Robison had been awarded more than $46,000 in college scholarship money through the Miss Tennessee and Miss America organizations.

Now, diploma in hand, Robison is packing her bags for a three-week trip to Sweden for a study abroad program, after which she hopes to begin her chemistry career in a laboratory in the Nashville area.



Miss Tennessee Helping Out At Rotary Breakfast

 

Paris, Tenn.—Miss Tennessee Grace Burgess, along with dozens of volunteers from the local schools, was helping members of The Paris Rotary Club with its annual Country Ham Breakfast Saturday morning. Always a popular event, the breakfast drew a huge crowd again this year for the country ham, grits, biscuits and gravy, biscuits and eggs. In photo with Miss Tennessee are Josh McCaslin, left, and Hunter Goodman to her right. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

 

Geranium Sale Is This Week

FFA Advisor Laura Moss tending to geraniums for the sale. (Shannon McFarlin photo).


Paris, Tenn.—The annual Geranium Sale sponsored by the Paris and Henry County Health Care Foundation will be held next week, Thursday and Friday (May 11 and 12), from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. or until they are gone.

The geraniums are raised each year by the Henry County FFA class.

Sale locations are at First Bank, Mineral Wells Ave., or the HCMC patient parking lot.

Pre-order deadline is 5 p.m. Monday, May 9. $7 per plant in a variety of colors. Questions call Tory Daughrity at 644 8266.

 

A-P Community Yard Sale Is Saturday

 

Paris, Tenn.--There will be yard sales aplenty in the Historic Atkins Porter Neighborhood this weekend, as the Neighborhood Association conducts its second annual Community Yard Sales on Saturday. Last year’s event featured at least 20 family yard sales held throughout the A-P Neighborhood and this year’s event is looking to be even better.

The A-P Neighborhood is large, with its boundaries running from Dunlap to Veterans’ Drive, Tyson Avenue, East Wood Street and points in between.

“Most of the sales will begin at 8:00 am and many will run until at least 1 pm, however, some participants may be starting and stopping at different times,” according to A-P Neighborhood Vice President Rachel Terrell.

Maps will be available at each yard sale, showing where all the sales will be. The Community Yard Sale is being publicized on the Association’s Facebook page and there will be plenty of signage all over the A-P Neighborhood to show everyone the location of the sales.

The neighborhood association was reactivated in 2016 after the City of Paris began the Preserve Paris Program in conjunction with the USDA. “We had a busy year with participation in the DPA Ice Cream Social, Helping Hand, Preserve Paris Neighborhood Cleanups and our potluck to welcome the Bethel physician assistant students to Paris,” according to Terrell.

The organization holds monthly meetings at the Bethel Building on Lake Street on the third Wednesday of each month at 7:00 pm. “All interested individuals to join us,” said HAPNA President Ed Roberts.

Terrell described the group’s second yard sale as a “fun, annual project that encourages people to come enjoy our shady streets, our cool old homes and our friendly neighbors. There’s plenty of parking on the street in the neighborhood, and if you’re a walker, every sale on the map is a nice walk from the AP Rec Center parking lot.

The rain date for the event is Saturday, June 3. For more information on participating, visit the group’s Facebook page or call 731-336-2917.

 

1400 Pounds Of Copper Stolen

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Union City, Tenn.—Some 1,400 pounds of copper was stolen from property that is slated to be demolished in Union City and police are still seeking the suspects.

The cooper was stolen from the Sta-Rite Building at 200 W. Tate, which is owned by The Gillham Foundation.

Police were called to the site on a report from two of the men who are bidding on the job of tearing the building down. They saw a large wet tire tracks inside the building leading onto the ramp to outside and also saw that the large amount of copper along with several “Boss Bars” were missing from the property.

UC Rotary Awards Scholarships

Union City, Tenn.—The Union City Rotary Club continued its support of higher education by awarding scholarships totaling $131,000 to 118 deserving Obion County students. The Union City Rotary Club scholarship program began in 1982 and since that time has awarded $5.3M in scholarships to Obion County students.

An additional $130,000 will be awarded to Union City High School graduates June 2.

The money comes from the Verhine Estate. However, the money for the scholarships awarded to high school seniors last week comes mostly from local donors who make a contribution each year.

 

UC Man Assaulted

Union City, Tenn.—A Union City man was treated at Baptist Memorial Hospital after he was beaten by six men in the parking lot of the East Gate Village Apartments. Police were called to 2010 Nailing Dr. near midnight on Saturday and found the victim agitated and intoxicated with the left side of his face bleeding and knots all over his face.

He said he was assaulted by six black men who asked him what he was doing there and they hit him repeatedly with the butt of a handgun. The victim was taken to the hospital by the ambulance.



Saturday, May 6, 2017


HCHS Top Ten Students Announced


Valedictorian Alex Boyd in middle of photo, with Salutatorian Ethan Jackson at left and Honorable Mention Colin Harris at right. (HCHS photo).


Paris, Tenn.-Henry County High School has announced the top students of the year. The students will be recognized at 2 p.m. Sunday, May 7, during the community Top Ten Recognition at First United Methodist Church.

The year’s Valedictorian is Alex Boyd, Salutatorian Ethan Jackson and Honorable Mention Colin Harris.

Top 10 students are determined based on current year grades. Top 7 is determined based on high school cumulative grades.  

10th grade Top 10  

Natalie Clark

Clay Durham

Graci Ellis

Ryan Gladwell

Caroline Gurton

Logan Lacy

Delia McDevitt

Kester Nucum

Jaret Rushing

Audrey Sinclair

 

11th grade Top 10

Samantha Carpenter

Josh Cutright

Gray Gardner

Hunter Goodman

Hannah Hopkins

Emily Hudgins

Cameron May

Murray Perkins

Anna Pettit

Tori Starks

 

12th grade Top 10  

Alex Boyd

Sophie Carter

Gracie Clayton

Beck Cox

Colin Harris

Calista Herrera

Ethan Jackson

Landon Roberson

Hailee Vaughn

Shannon Watson

Elizabeth Wood

 

12th grade Top 7

1. Alex Boyd

2. Ethan Jackson

3. Colin Harris

4. Gracie Clayton

5. Sydney Wyatt

6--TIE:

Calista Herrera

Shannon Watson



Friday, May 5, 2017


Paris Fire Department Wins Battle Of Badges

Deputies, Police To Get Pies In Face

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The results are in: The Paris Fire Department won this year’s Battle of the Badges for the Lifeline Bloodmobile.

As released by Tammy Hurst of Lifeline, the scores are: Paris Fire Department, 39; Henry County Sheriff’s Office, 36; and Paris Police, 20.

What that means is that the members of the Sheriff’s Office and the Paris Police will have pies thrown in their faces. The time and place for the pie-throwing will be announced at a later time.

Hurst thanked everyone “for being such great sports and for being so involved in this event and saving lives”.


Ballin To Represent Hart Attack Defendant

Case Bound Over To Grand Jury

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—One of the people charged in the attack earlier this year on local demonstrator James Hart has hired a well-known Memphis lawyer to defend her.

Memphis Attorney Leslie Ballin, along with co-counsel John Miles of Union City, will be representing Eleanor Pitts of Cordova, in the case. Paris Attorney Hansel McCadams will be representing the other defendant in the case, Dallas Hofmann of Memphis.

Ballin is considered one of the best attorneys in Tennessee and gained national notoriety when he defended Mary Winkler, who had been charged with murdering her husband in Selmer in 2008.

Following a hearing this week in Henry County General Sessions Court, the case against Pitts and Hofmann was bound over to the County Grand Jury, which will meet on July 3.

Pitts and Hofmann, both of whom are 29, were charged by Paris Police with assaulting Hart while he carried a protest sign at the corner of Mineral Wells and Tyson Avenues in February. Hart is a familiar face in Paris, Dover and Camden, where he regularly stands on corners with his signs which promote whites’ rights and other causes. Both Pitts and Hofmann have also been charged with felony civil rights intimidation.

 

New Historical Acquisitions Displayed

Paris, Tenn.—Henry County Historical Society President David Webb speaks to members of the group at its Thursday night meeting, while a display of newly-acquired artifacts is laid out on the table. The meeting was held at the Paris-Henry County Heritage Center and Webb reported on the items, which were acquired at the John Thomas estate auction which was held recently at the fairgrounds. Webb was authorized by the Society to purchase several items at the auction and he reported that he was able to acquire the items for far less than had been anticipated. The items—most of which are in mint condition—include a rare Paris Republic newspaper from 1853, a piece of Russell Pottery, a Luckey’s Liniment bottle, bottles used in other former Paris businesses, documents from the Golden Peacock company, a program from the Dixie Theater, and more. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

 

City Of Paris Issues 13 New Business Licenses

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The city of Paris issued 13 new business licenses in March. This continues the positive trend begun over the past several months of having multiple new businesses starting in Paris.

At Thursday night’s short meeting of the Paris City Commission, City Finance Director Traci Pillow said the new businesses are: Leather Hearts, Renaissance, Old West Steak House, Henry’s Cleaning, G Mommas, Cowan Christian Printing, Peanut’s Biker Gallery, Ground to the Crown Construction Renovations.

Two businesses renewed their licenses: Dewana’s Unique Cleaning and Lakeside Plumbing, while a new owner for Paris Loft Wines and Spirits was issued a business license.

Additionally, two businesses have starting operating with additional locations: Real Floors, Inc., and Wormley Brothers Enterprises, both of which are contracting firms.

Continuing another positive trend, Pillow reported that retail sales for the month of February showed a decrease of 3.35% compared to February of last year.  They are still ahead by 1.82% for the calendar year to date.

General Fund expenditures exceeded revenues by $202,554 in the month of March.  Revenues are still ahead fiscal year to date by $850,662. 

In other business during Thursday night’s meeting, several housekeeping matters were acted upon, including the issuance of bonds for the ongoing energy efficiency project with the Trane company. Under the project, the city is replacing its street lights with LED lighting and is replacing the A/C unit at the Paris Civic Center swimming pool.

Council also approved BPU’s request to increase water and sewer tap fees and authorized Mayor Carlton Gerrell to sign an agreement which makes changes in the city’s retirement plan.

 

Airport Lighting Upgraded To LED

Union City, Tenn.—Upgrading of lighting at the Everett-Stewart Regional Airport was recently completed. According to Airport Manager Jo Ann Speer, the outdoor lighting was recently updated to LED. Speer thanked the Gibson County EMC and said the upgrade will greatly enhance the airport’s security and lighting system. Speer said, “Gibson EMC is a wonderful partner who realizes the importance of the airport and supports our efforts to promote our community.  This is demonstrated by their ongoing commitment to economic development efforts, not only at the airport, but throughout the region.”

 





Thursday, May 4, 2017


100-Year FFA Anniversary Honored

FFA Advisor Laura Moss with former ag teachers George Whitfield, George Wofford and Jim Cloar. (McFarlin photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—A large group gathered at Grove Tower Thursday afternoon to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Future Farmers of America, which got its start in Henry County. In addition to current FFA students and Advisor Laura Moss, the crowd included former agriculture teachers, alumni, Henry County school board members and faculty, supporters and community members.

Selected FFA Students Emily Hudgins, Pierce Rose, Jacob Pooler, Caroline Gurton, Adam Rogers and Blake Kennedy presented prepared remarks on what FFA education means to students and communities.

Moss voiced the hope that FFA education—and the Grove Tower—will “still be around 100 years from now”. She said, “We’ve been unearthing a lot of old artifacts” from the program’s local history, with help from Mark McBride from the State Historical Society.

An exhibit with many of the artifacts was set up on the first floor of Grove Tower and is open for the public to view. Thursday’s celebration included a large cake designed with the FFA insignia.

David Flowers brought his old FFA jacket with him, while Grove Principal Sam Tharpe looks on. (McFarlin photo).

School Lunch Prices Increased—Reluctantly

Dr. Norton goes over the budget with board members. (McFarlin photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The Henry County Schools board of education reluctantly approved a request to increase school lunch prices after school officials made clear the price hike was necessary in order to continue participating in the national school lunch program.

School Nutrition Supervisor Karen Wilson said a result of the recent state audit was the finding that the county school system is not charging enough for lunches. Director of Schools Dr. Brian Norton noted that school lunch prices have not increased since 2008 “because we’re cognizant of the needs of our students.”

Norton emphasized the price increase “is not a whim. It’s simply so that we can continue to participate in the school lunch program.”

Wilson said the prices would increase from $2 to $2.50 for elementary and from 2 to $2.50 to $2.75 for grades 6-12. She said the district’s universal breakfast for all students will continue to be free.

Upon recommendation of Norton and Committee Chairman Tom Beasley, the board unanimously approved the 2017-2018 budget, which Norton noted once again is a balanced budget. “Last year, we had the first balanced budget in many years and once again we will have a balanced budget,” he said.

He noted, “You’ve done a great job of making this district one of the better paying districts in our area”. He also noted his difficult today’s budgets can be to manage, with the rising costs of insurance and transportation.

A private citizen was on hand to object to the punishment meted out recently to a student whose private message on Instagram was posted publicly on Facebook.

Scott Owen of Paris read a portion of a prepared statement on the issue and said he believed that the punishment was “blatantly hypocritical”.

In other business, Norton reported that eight applications have been received for the position of Grove Assistant Principal. The job will be filled by May 24.

 

Charges Now Filed In Dresden School Incident

Dresden, Tenn.—The Weakley County Sheriff’s Office has now charged the five suspects involved with damage at the Dresden High School football field with vandalism. And because three of the five are 18 years old or older, they now have been identified.

Investigator Marty Plunk had obtained confessions from five people who were present when the damage was done and at that time it was decided since all five were students, the situation would be handled in-house by the school district.

However, the five suspects have been unable to agree on the amount of responsibility each holds and who would pay restitution.

A meeting was held between Plunk and the District Attorney’s representatives and all five have now been charged with vandalism. Two of those are under 18 years old and are charged in juvenile court.

The three adults that have been charged in Weakley County General Sessions Court are: Hunter Walters, age 18, of Cottage Grove; Donivon Sawyer, age 18, of Dresden; and Devin Mansfield, age 19, of Dresden.


Paris TCAT Students Bring Home Awards

Paris, Tenn.--The Tennessee College of Applied Technology in Paris brought home gold and silver medals from the State SkillsUSA competitions.

Students from TCAT competed in the post-secondary division of the Annual Conference and five received medals. Students from the Paris campus earning medals were: Tucker Hensley of  Dresden, Gold in  Power Equipment Repair; Derrick Garner of Palmersville, silver in Motorcycle Service; Amanda Howell of Bruceton, Gold in Early Childhood Education; Cody Willis of Camden, Silver in CNC Technician and Ronald Buckley of Big Sandy, Gold in Related Technical Math. The two-day competition tested students in practical skills as well as written and oral exams.

Buckley, Hensley and Howell will advance to the National Competition in Louisville, Kentucky in June.

SkillsUSA is a national organization serving teachers and high school and college students who are preparing for careers in technical, skilled and service occupations, including health occupations.   

 

Bicho Brothers To Perform Saturday

Union City, Tenn.--If you like Classic Rock music, head to Discovery Park of America this Saturday night, May 6th.  The Bicho Brothers from Nashville will bring excitement, energy and fun to the stage at the second Southern Nights music festival of the year.

The Bicho Brothers band is a group of music veterans who share a passion and desire for creating great music and moving audiences.  From standards like the Beatles, Rolling Stones, Santana, The Eagles, Jackson Brown and Neil Young to favorites by Delbert McClinton, Loggins & Messina and Little Feat- there is something for everyone at a Bicho Brothers Show. 

According to Discovery Park of America Events Director, Lauren Jones, a regional favorite band called 24-Seven will kick off the show Saturday night.  24-Seven is a cover band that often plays around Kentucky Lake. “The gates will open at 6:00 p.m. and we’ll have food trucks, yard games and a festival type atmosphere on the Great Lawn at Discovery Park,” Jones said.   

Tickets are $10 per person, with children 12 and under getting in free.  Tickets on sale online and at the ticket counter now, and will be available at the door Saturday evening.  “We encourage everyone to bring bag chairs or blankets and enjoy the evening at Discovery Park,” Jones said. 

The third and final Southern Nights Festival is slated for June 10th with The Voice Runner Up from 2016, Adam Wakefield, on the docket.  Discovery Park of America is located at 830 Everett Blvd., in Union City, TN.  The park’s website is www.discoveryparkofamerica.comand the phone number is 731-885-5455. 


Free Disposal Of Household Hazardous Waste 

Paris, TN—The annual Household Hazardous Waste Collection Event will be held from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, May 6, at the Henry County Recycling Center at 450 Recycling Drive.

The event is sponsored by Henry County Solid Waste and the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation Division of Solid Waste Management. The event is free and open to any Tennessee household.

According to Ron Watkins, Henry County Solid Waste Manager, the mobile collection program was established to provide a safe means of disposal for household hazardous wastes. There are many reasons to properly dispose of household hazardous waste. One reason is that improperly stored hazardous products in the home may increase the risk of poisoning or injury. Also, disposing of hazardous waste in ordinary trash may injure sanitation workers because some products are chemically incompatible and may cause fires in dumpsters or garbage trucks. Examples of these are household cleaners, oil based paint, aerosols, pesticides, rechargeable batteries, used automotive fluids, pool chemicals, and many more household products that are unwanted or no longer useable.                

Additionally old mercury thermometers and thermostats, TV’s, computer equipment, and other household electronic equipment will be accepted.  The usual recyclables such as used motor oil, antifreeze, aluminum, scrap metal, old appliances, cardboard, paper, and number 1 and 2 plastics will be accepted as well.

Tires will not be accepted at this year’s event, however, tires can be taken to the Paris Henry County Landfill for disposal. 

For more information about the Household Hazardous Waste Collection Event or to learn of permanent used oil collection sites call the Henry County Recycling Center at (731)642-5170 or visit the county web site at www.henrycountytn.org.

 

HCSO To Enforce Operation CARE

Sheriff Monte Belew and Paris Police Chief Chuck Elizondo at right, with THP Sgt. Andy Forsythe and Chief Deputy Damon Lowe at left. (HCSO photo).

Paris, Tenn.--The Henry County Sheriff's Office has begun Operation C.A.R.E., which stands for Critical Accident Reduction Enforcement. For the next several months patrol units will be heavily enforcing traffic violations that directly relate to vehicle crashes. During this time deputies will be concentrating efforts to the Highway 69 S area from the city limits to the county line. They will be targeting speeding, seatbelts, texting while driving, and any other reckless traffic offenses. This is a joint effort with the Henry County Sheriff's Office, Tennessee Highway Patrol and Paris Police Department.  

 

Spring Gathering Set For Friday

Paris, Tenn.—The Paris First United Methodist Women Spring Gathering will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday. Meals include chicken casserole, green beans, salad, rolls, dessert and drink for $10.

The bake sale and plant sale are also held. Tickets available at the door or from church members. Call 642-4764 for take-outs and deliveries.

UTM Provost Search Extended

Martin, Tenn. – The search to identify the University of Tennessee at Martin’s next chief academic officer has been extended. The decision was announced May 3 by Dr. Keith Carver, UT Martin chancellor, during a meeting of the search committee for the position of vice chancellor for academic affairs and provost. Carver also announced plans to name an interim replacement in May to serve until the position is filled.

“This is a great position that deserves our careful consideration for identifying additional qualified candidates,” Carver wrote in an email message to the university. “We will be successful identifying the person who will provide the academic leadership needed to continue the university’s positive direction.” The search will restart this month, and resumes will be collected through August. The committee will reconvene in August with on-campus interviews anticipated in late September and early October.

UT Martin launched a national search for a new provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs after Dr. Jerald Ogg, who has held the dual position since 2011, decided to return to the faculty in the UT Martin Department of Communications.

Ashlie Czyz, director of human resources programs and executive recruiter for the University of Tennessee System, is serving as executive recruiter for this position. For more information on the search process, contact Czyz at aczyz@tennessee.edu.

 



Wednesday, May 3, 2017


Free Smoke Alarms To Be Handed Out Saturday

Buchanan, Tenn.—A door-to-door smoke alarm campaign will be conducted Saturday in the Buchanan and Paris Landing area.

It will be held from noon until 4 p.m. and representatives of the Paris Landing Volunteer Fire Department and other emergency responders will partner with the Tennessee State Fire Marshall’s office will be going door-to-door handing out the free smoke alarms.

In April, five family members were killed in a house fire in the Buchanan area.

Paris Landing Fire Chief Reggie Coles said, “We want to spend a few minutes educating our residents about the dangers of fire and offer them free smoke alarms, which we will install while we are there.  The smoke alarms are furnished at no charge by the State Fire Marshall’s office.    All emergency personnel will be in uniform and all civilian volunteers will have proper documentation with them.”

All emergency services organizations in Henry County, as well as the Red Cross, local dhurches, the Amvets and the American Legion have been invited. 

Coles said, “We see this as an opportunity for us to come together as a community to help prevent any further loss of life due to fire.”


UC Man Arrested For Solicitation Of Minor

Martin, Tenn.—The Martin Police Department today arrested a Union City man for solicitation of a minor.

Brett L. Wheeler, age 35, was charged with sexual solicitation of a 13-year-old and criminal attempt to commit aggravated statutory rape. He was arrested by the Martin PD’s Internet Crimes Against Children Unit.

He will be arraigned Thursday in Weakley County General Sessions Court.

 

KSP Seek Public Help In Death Investigation

Cadiz, Ky. Kentucky State Police Post are asking the public for assistance in regards to the death of Christina D Edmonson, whose body was found in Trigg County on April 25. Anyone who had contact with Christina or knowledge of her whereabouts between March 13, 2017 and April 25, 2017 is asked to contact Detective Brian Hill at KSP Post 1 in Mayfield.

KSP has released the most recent photo of Ms. Edmonson to the media in hopes someone with information with recognize her.

A female body was located in a wooded area during an ongoing search of the area. KSP already searched two residences on Oak Grove Church Rd. for evidence.

The investigation is continuing by Detective Brian Hill. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Kentucky State Police Post 1 at 270-856-3721 or anonymously at 1-800-222-5555.  Citizens may also report tips anonymously through the KSP app.  

 

Losers In “Battle” Receive Pies In Face

Paris, Tenn.—A new wrinkle has been added to the “Battle Of The Badges” contest with the Lifeline Bloodmobile visit on Thursday, May 4. The Paris Police, Henry County Sheriff’s Office and Paris Fire Department are competing and encouraging everyone to donate blood in their names during the visit.

The losing department will receive pies in the face. With that in mind, the Paris PD is encouraging everyone to come out for their “Save A Life” campaign and donate blood in the name of the Paris PD.

The bloodmobile visit is from noon to 6 p.m. Thursday at the First United Methodist Church.

 

UC Plans To Resurface Tennis Courts

Union City, Tenn.—Union City City Council last night accepted a bid of $22,800 for resurfacing the tennis courts at the fairgrounds at Graham Park. When the Middle School tennis courts were resurfaced recently, the Union City school board paid half the cost since the school system uses them as their home courts. Since Obion Central uses the fairgrounds courts as their home courts, the city has asked the Obion County school board to pay half the cost. No word yet on whether they will or not.

Council also accepted a bid from Hank Riley for the demolition of 703 to 705 East Todd St. and appointed Ann Joyner to the UC Industrial Board.

The National Day of Prayer observance will be held noon Thursday at the courthouse. In case of rain, it will be held in the Municipal Courtroom.

Glessner: Samburg Recorder Admits Theft

Samburg, Tenn.—Samburg Mayor John Glessner informed his city council that former City Recorder Mary Ann Swain has admitted taking some $32,000 during her tenure and that negotiations are ongoing with the county prosecutor on what type of punishment will be levied.

Swain, age 54, now of Union, Mo., was indicted in February and charged with theft. The indictment indicated she had stolen the funds from August 2012 until October 2014 when she resigned.

Swain appeared in Obion County Circuit Court Monday. Under an agreement, Swain would have paid back the money over a three-year period and avoided jail, but Glessner said Judge Parham said he was not comfortable with that agreement and ordered Swain to return to court June 19.

In other business during the Samburg council meeting, Glessner said the Obion County Budget Commission has agreed to allow a vote by the full commission on paying Samburg $70,000 over three years for sales tax incorrectly paid to the county by Samburg.


City Pool Water Slide Coming Right Along

 

Paris, Tenn.—It’s beginning to look a lot like a water slide. Work continues on the new water slide at the City of Paris swimming pool, which will be ready for the pool’s annual opening on Memorial Day. The new slide will feature three large tubes in yellow and two different shades of blue, with constantly flowing water. The water slide is being installed by Perfect Settings of Columbia, Tenn. In photo, Cavin Deavers works on one of the tubes. Pool prices will increase this summer from $3-$6 for the daily fee. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

 

Second Phase Of Downtown Alley Project Begins

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

New Paris, Tenn.—Work began this week by the city of Paris on improving another alley—this one located next to the Paris Board of Public Utilities offices on Washington Street. The project will be much the same as the one already completed on the west side of the court square and will also include new pavers to improve the look of the alley.

City Economic Development Director Jennifer Morris said this is the second phase of the Downtown Alley improvement project and is intended to improve the function--and aesthetics--of the three main downtown alleys that serve as service alleys to downtown businesses.  

Morris said, “The reason for implementing the project, in 2015 the City of Paris found itself in a situation where the downtown buildings adjacent to alleys were experiencing issues with water getting into the basement of the buildings. After evaluating the situation we determined that there were a number of issues that should be addressed in our downtown alleys”, which includes improving drainage which also will improve the condition of downtown buildings; removing alley floors in need of paving; removing obsolete overhead wires; improving utilities and improving storm systems.

 

Two Men On Run After Search

Paris, Tenn.—Two men are still at large after the Henry County Metro Crime Unit executed a search warrant on Vale Road in Mansfield. The men, Harry McNeal of Mansfield, and Tyler Ashby of Carroll County, are wanted on drug and theft charges.

A Camden woman, Amber Smotherman, age 22, was arrested at the residence on theft and drug charges during the search.

According to a press release issued by the Henry County Sheriff’s Office, a stolen Ford Escape was recovered; it had been stolen from East Tennessee earlier. A second stolen vehicle was found in the shed on the property and drug paraphernalia was also found at the residence.

McNeal and Ashby fled the scene into the woods surrounding the home.

Helping in execution of the search warrant were officers from the Tennessee Highway Patrol, Paris Police, Puryear Police, DEA officers, and the Henry County Special Response Team and the Paris Police Fast Team.

 

Children’s Book Sale Set Saturday

Paris, Tenn.—The W.G. Rhea Library Book Store will be holding a Children’s Book Sale from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, May 6, at the Kroger Shopping Center.

The Cat In The Hat and Thing 1 will be there to meet and greet the children. Books will be on sale 50 percent off.

 

Celebrate Derby Day At The Dixie

 

Huntingdon, Tenn.--If you’re on this side of the Kentucky line on Derby Day, you don’t want to miss the best Derby party around. Head on over to the 6th Annual Derby Day at The Dixie on Saturday, May 6.

Derby Day at The Dixie is a free event to the public. The Dixie ushers in the big race with a good old-fashioned tail gate party starting at 3 pm outside with The Cherry Avenue Band playing some of the best bluegrass music around. Lots of good Southern food, fun and fellowship and let’s not forget about the fast horses.

Event Sponsor Huntingdon Animal Clinic will have a Thoroughbred racehorse on hand along with a jockey for your photo ops.

Great auction items given by local businesses for both the silent auction and the live auction. Auction proceeds benefit The Dixie’s Academic Enrichment programs. At 5 pm, everyone moves inside The Dixie to cheer on your favorite horses as the greatest two minutes in sports, the Kentucky Derby, will be on the big screen in the Hal Holbrook Theatre.

Awards are given for the Best Derby Hat (women), Best Derby Attire (men and children), Best Derby Dish, Best Derby Pie and Best Tailgate!

There will be plenty of crafts and games for the children.

If you would like to host your own tent at the tailgate party, please contact Teresa Carter at (731) 614-7487. 



Tuesday, May 2, 2017


Going To The Dogs: In A Good Way

K9 Zamor, handled by Leisa Geddie of Tyler, Texas, alerts to marijuana hidden in the front of the truck at today's training at the fairgrounds. (McFarlin photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—Henry County has really gone to the dogs this week—but in a good way.

One hundred and thirty K9 law enforcement teams from all over the South are in Paris this week for the annual National Narcotics Detection Dog Association training. The teams and their families are all staying at the Paris Landing Inn while training is ongoing.

The annual training is once again being hosted by the Henry County Sheriff’s Office and Paris Police Department. Sheriff Monte Belew said, “We’re really honored to be hosting for a second time. We really love bringing all these good K9s and their handlers for their training here, which also is a big boost to the local economy.”

All of the K9s in both the Henry County Sheriff’s Office and Paris Police are participating in the training, as are K9s from other area departments, such as the Martin Police.

K9 Teams from all over Tennessee, as well as Kentucky, Arkansas, Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, Alabama and other states are conducting training sessions around the county, including the fairgrounds, Paris Inns and Suites, the Coast Guard headquarters, the Girl Scout camp and other locations.

Billy Jordan of St. James Parish in Louisiana is the President of the NNDDA and said, “We really can’t thank enough the Henry County Sheriff’s Office, the Chamber and everyone who has helped with this event.”

Deputy Ricky Wade, who is instrumental in organizing the training, was elected by the NNDDA to its governing board and Jordan thanked him for all his hard work.

The public is invited to the annual K9 drug dog competition from 7-11 a.m. Friday at the Paris Landing State Park (Don Ridgeway Convention Center). Belew said, “We want to encourage anyone to come see the dogs at work.”

Jordan said, “We have the top trainers from the U.S. here this week, advancing their training in a variety of ways, from narcotics and patrol, to tracking and explosives. We have set up scenarios, both inside and outside, that mimic environments in which they’ll be working.”

On a somber note, Belew said there was a fatality among the K9s gathered here this week. He said a K9 belonging to an officer from Louisiana  died in a fall from the fourth floor balcony at the Paris Landing Inn on Sunday. Belew said the officer and his dog had just arrived in the room and he opened the door to the outside balcony and called to his dog to come and the dog leaped over the railing. The dog was taken to the Mineral Wells Animal Clinic, where he was declared deceased.

Both Belew and Jordan voiced their sympathies and prayers to the handler and his department for the loss.

Several teams wait their turns at the fairgrounds. (McFarlin photo).


Money Box Stolen From UC Day Care

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Union City, Tenn.—A Union City man was arrested Monday for stealing the money box from a local day care Saturday.

William Hayden, age 25, of 309 Beck St., Union City, was charged with burglary after police identified him on video surveillance stealing the box. Hayden will be arraigned later today, at which time bond will be set.

Police were called to the Kare Bear Day Care at 500 E. Church St. on Monday morning on a report that someone had stolen the box used to collect checks from parents. Police were shown video of a white male entering the business on Sunday around 6:15 p.m.

The video showed the suspect walking into the day care from the Exchange St. entrance and a few minutes later walking out carrying the money box. The suspect left on a black bike, heading east on Exchange St.

After the suspect was identified as Hayden, he was picked up at his home a few hours later.



Paris FFA Wins Numerous Awards



Jackson, Tenn.—The Paris FFA brought home an armful of awards from the 68th Annual West Tennessee Awards Banquet in Jackson last week, including over $2,000 in prize money.

FFA Advisor Laura Moss said the Paris Chapter was announced as the District 2 champion and 4th place overall in West TN out of 48 chapters.  The District Championship has been brought home by the chapter for every year since 1977.  


In the individual award areas, the chapter was 3rd in the Supervised Agriculture Experience Division, 4th in Leadership and 4th in Instructional.


Nine members were recognized for their Regional Winning Proficiency Applications.  Hunter Goodman, Emily Hudgins, Murray Perkins, Blake Kennedy, Pierce Rose, Adam Rogers, Jacob Pooler, Ryan Patrum and Tyler Bomar each brought home a plaque honoring their accomplishments as well as a $200 check.


Four Agriscience Fair participants were also recognized for their accomplishments in completing successful projects.  Ben Hayes and Dallas Ables completed individual projects that were Regional Winners in their respective categories while Hannah Hutson and Alexis Caldwell completed a team project that was the Regional Winner in their area.


Moss said, “The Chapter has had an exceptional year and would like to thank everyone who has helped us during the year whether it was coaching a team, providing sponsorship or sending words of encouragement.”

 




FFA Anniversary To Be Honored Thursday



Paris, Tenn.—The Henry County Schools board of education will honor the 100th anniversary of the local Future Farmers of America with a special reception at 4 p.m. Thursday, just prior to the monthly board of education meeting set for 5 p.m.

Both the FFA reception and the school board meeting will be held at the Grove Tower Building.


Grove Tower was the birthplace of vocational agricultural education. The nation’s first vocational agriculture program was taught there after passage of the Smith-Hughes Act in 1917 and one of the school’s principals, Dudley M. Clements, became the nation’s first vocational agriculture teacher and established the country’s first FFA leadership training camp.


Current and past FFA members will be on hand for the reception.


Agenda items for the county schools meeting include a proposed hike in cafeteria prices and discussion of the budget. 


The public is invited for both the FFA reception and the board meeting.



Burger Bash Check Presentation



Paris, Tenn.—The Exchange Club-Carl Perkins Center for the Prevention of Child Abuse in Henry County gathered recently for the presentation of a big check representing the $7,164 raised at the McDonald’s Burger Bash in mid-April. At the Burger Bash, representatives from the local advisory board and staff were among those working the counter and tables during the dinner rush. Participating in the Burger Bash were nine McDonald’s locations in Henry, Weakley and Carroll Counties. The Henry County staff  has helped over 1,094 individuals in the community. The mission of the Center is to provide support to families in preventing and dealing with child abuse in West Tennessee and to help both parents and children meet the practical needs of preserving and improving the quality of family life.  




State Marker Honors “One Of Darkest Days”


Camden, Tenn.—The Benton County Chamber of Commerce and Benton Co. officials on Saturday unveiled a new historical marker issued by the state of Tennessee that commemorates the late Patsy Cline, fellow Country Artists Hawkshaw Hawkins, and Cowboy Copas and manager and pilot Randy Hughes, all of whom were killed in a plane crash in Camden in March of 1965. The new marker is headed, “One Of Country Music’s Darkest Days”. The marker was placed at the site of the plane crash, which is located just off of Hwy. 641. (Chamber photo).



 

Battle Of The Badges Blood Drive Is Thursday



Paris, Tenn.—Thursday, May 4, is the date for the Battle of the Badges Blood Drive in Paris by the Lifeline Blood Mobile. The bloodmobile will be at the First United Methodist Church from noon to 6 p.m.


The Paris Fire Department, Henry County Sheriff’s Office and Paris Police Department will be competing to see which department can produce the most blood donors and they encourage the public to give blood in their name. 


There is an urgent need for O NEGATIVE donors but all donors will be accepted.  Do not forget your photo ID and you can register 24 hours prior on line to speed up the process. 


 

Break-In Attempted At UC Business


Union City, Tenn.—Attempts were made to break into a Union City business on Saturday and damage was caused to the business in the process.


Union City Police were called to the EZ Clean Car Wash at 220 N. First St. on a report that the office door had been pried in attempt to break into the bill changer from the inside and one of the locks on the wash bay was pried open and the drink machine key taken.

The business owner said a total of $400 damage was caused.






FFA Anniversary To Be Honored Thursday



Paris, Tenn.—The Henry County Schools board of education will honor the 100th anniversary of the local Future Farmers of America with a special reception at 4 p.m. Thursday, just prior to the monthly board of education meeting set for 5 p.m.

Both the FFA reception and the school board meeting will be held at the Grove Tower Building.


Grove Tower was the birthplace of vocational agricultural education. The nation’s first vocational agriculture program was taught there after passage of the Smith-Hughes Act in 1917 and one of the school’s principals, Dudley M. Clements, became the nation’s first vocational agriculture teacher and established the country’s first FFA leadership training camp.


Current and past FFA members will be on hand for the reception.


Agenda items for the county schools meeting include a proposed hike in cafeteria prices and discussion of the budget. 


The public is invited for both the FFA reception and the board meeting.



Burger Bash Check Presentation



Paris, Tenn.—The Exchange Club-Carl Perkins Center for the Prevention of Child Abuse in Henry County gathered recently for the presentation of a big check representing the $7,164 raised at the McDonald’s Burger Bash in mid-April. At the Burger Bash, representatives from the local advisory board and staff were among those working the counter and tables during the dinner rush. Participating in the Burger Bash were nine McDonald’s locations in Henry, Weakley and Carroll Counties. The Henry County staff  has helped over 1,094 individuals in the community. The mission of the Center is to provide support to families in preventing and dealing with child abuse in West Tennessee and to help both parents and children meet the practical needs of preserving and improving the quality of family life.  




State Marker Honors “One Of Darkest Days”


Camden, Tenn.—The Benton County Chamber of Commerce and Benton Co. officials on Saturday unveiled a new historical marker issued by the state of Tennessee that commemorates the late Patsy Cline, fellow Country Artists Hawkshaw Hawkins, and Cowboy Copas and manager and pilot Randy Hughes, all of whom were killed in a plane crash in Camden in March of 1965. The new marker is headed, “One Of Country Music’s Darkest Days”. The marker was placed at the site of the plane crash, which is located just off of Hwy. 641. (Chamber photo).



 

Battle Of The Badges Blood Drive Is Thursday



Paris, Tenn.—Thursday, May 4, is the date for the Battle of the Badges Blood Drive in Paris by the Lifeline Blood Mobile. The bloodmobile will be at the First United Methodist Church from noon to 6 p.m.


The Paris Fire Department, Henry County Sheriff’s Office and Paris Police Department will be competing to see which department can produce the most blood donors and they encourage the public to give blood in their name. 


There is an urgent need for O NEGATIVE donors but all donors will be accepted.  Do not forget your photo ID and you can register 24 hours prior on line to speed up the process. 


 

Break-In Attempted At UC Business


Union City, Tenn.—Attempts were made to break into a Union City business on Saturday and damage was caused to the business in the process.


Union City Police were called to the EZ Clean Car Wash at 220 N. First St. on a report that the office door had been pried in attempt to break into the bill changer from the inside and one of the locks on the wash bay was pried open and the drink machine key taken.

The business owner said a total of $400 damage was caused.








Monday, May 1, 2017


Dresden High Vandalism Suspects Caught

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Dresden, Tenn.—The Dresden High School football field and fieldhouse were vandalized Friday night and four of the five suspects identified are students. According to Weakley County Sheriff’s Captain Randall McGowan, the Dresden School system has elected to handle the incident themselves instead of having charges brought.

McGowan said someone entered a room next to the fieldhouse and took a golf cart. The golf cart was driven around in circles on the field and then it was run into a creek full of water. McGowan said the golf cart was destroyed as a result and it was valued at $1,500.

Doors in the fieldhouse also were rammed by the golf cart, causing $1,000 damage and there was $500 damage to the field itself.

Investigator Marty Plunk obtained confessions from three of the five involved earlier today, McGowan said. Of the five suspects, three are juveniles and two are over the age of 18. Four of the five are Dresden High students.

 


Jelks: From HC Patriot To NE Patriot?

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—From the Henry County Patriots to the New England Patriots?

Fingers are crossed all over Henry County for Andrew Jelks of Paris, who has been invited to try out for the New England Patriots this weekend.

Jelks, age 23, was a Vanderbilt University offensive lineman and a standout for the Henry County Patriots.

Jelks’ father, Bill said Andrew will be leaving May 4 for the camp “which is actually called a ‘Rookie Mini-Camp’, even though it’s not all rookies that are invited. It includes draft picks, free agents and other invites like Andrew.”

During the mini-camp, Andrew will be “put through workouts by the Patriots and they could decide to keep him or they could say ‘Thanks for coming up’. We just don’t know at this point”, Jelks said.

Jelks tweeted a message on Saturday at the conclusion of the NFL Draft: “First off, I want to thank God for giving me this day! I am honored and blessed to be given this opportunity by the New England Patriots.”

Jelks said his son is “excited, definitely” to be called up for the camp. During his playing days at Vanderbilt, Jelks was plagued by injuries, but his father said, “He’s worked pretty hard the last few years. He’s been diligent and he’s been trying to prepare for something like this. He just wants the chance.”

 

Historical Society To View New Acquisitions

Paris, Tenn.—The Henry County Historical Society will hold its regular quarterly meeting on Thursday, May 4th, at the Paris-Henry County Heritage Center beginning at 6 p.m.

 

Members and visitors will view new Heritage Center exhibits and items recently acquired from a local auction that include Luckey's Liniment and Dr. Aden's American Liniment and Lip Salve bottles, The Paris Republic (1853), The Paris Post-Intelligencer (1890), and The Nashville Gazette (1865) newspapers, local L&N photographs, a Nancy Hall Jubilee program, a Crete Opera House program, Grove Comets, and many photographs and items from past local businesses and industries.

 

The membership will vote on changes to the Society's bylaws to comply with non-profit 501(c)3 requirements.

 

The public is invited to attend.

 

Local Area Shows Unemployment Decrease

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Nashville, Tenn.—The unemployment rates for March 2017 in Tennessee have decreased in 91 counties, including those in our local area. During March, unemployment only increased in three counties and stayed the same in one.

In our area, Weakley County has the lowest unemployment with 5.3 percent, followed closely by Henry County with 5.7 percent. None of our local counties are on the state’s top ten list of highest unemployment.

Davidson County has the state’s lowest major metropolitan rate at 3.4 percent.

Weakley County’s current rate of 5.3 percent is a decrease from 5.7 percent in February, while Henry County’s rate of 5.7 percent is a decrease from 6.2.

Obion County’s rate of 6.5 percent is down from 7 percent in February, with Stewart County’s rate of 6.3 percent a decrease from 7.5 percent, Carroll County’s 6.3 percent down from 6.7 percent, and Benton County’s rate of 6.6 percent down from 6.9.

 

Four Arrested On Drug Charges

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Martin, Tenn.—Three men and one woman were arrested on drug charges after the Weakley County Sheriff’s Office executed a search warrant at their apartment Friday. Additional charges were filed against them because their apartment is located near an afterschool daycare and a Headstart program.

The warrant was executed at 117 Manley St., which is near the Tennessee State University Early Head Start building and the daycare area.

Entry into the apartment was made by the sheriff’s SWAT Team. Inside the residence deputies found over a pound of marijuana and digital scales used to weigh it for resale, along with $330 in cash.

Arrested was Donald Dickerson, age 29, of S. Fulton; Peter Ford, age 31, of 117 Manley, Martin; Chundria Owens, age 25, of Martin; and Sidney Owens, age 25 of Martin. Owens was also charged with resisting arrest, after he tried to run out the back door.

The Martin Police assisted in execution of the search warrant.

 

 “Breaking Up” To Be Performed At KPAC

Paris, Tenn.-The musical “Breaking Up Is Hard To Do” will be performed this weekend at the Krider Performing Arts Center. Times are 7 p.m. Friday and 3 p.m. Saturday. Admission $10. 

Set at a Catskills resort in 1960, this is the sweetly comic story of Lois and Marge, two friends from Brooklyn in search of good times and romance over one wild Labor Day weekend. The score showcases 18 Neil Sedaka classics, including “Where the Boys Are”, “Sweet Sixteen”, “Calendar Girl”, “Love Will Keep Us Together”, and of course, the chart-topping title song, “Breaking Up Is Hard To Do.”

Performed a tremendously talented cast with a live band, including members of “The Barons”, the show will be certain to entertain anyone who knows the music of Neil Sedaka. 

Purchase tickets at Paris Civic Center and Merison's Furniture in Paris. Purchase by phone at 1-800-838-3006 – no extra fees. Purchase online at krider.brownpapertickets.com – no extra fees

Group rates available.  Inquire to kriderpac@gmail.com

 

Rotary Country Ham Breakfast Is Saturday

Paris, Tenn.—The 44th annual Paris Rotary Club Country Ham breakfast will be held from 6-11 a.m. Saturday, May 6, at Paris Elementary School. The meal consists of country ham, grits, eggs, biscuits and gravy and juice and coffee. Ticket price $10.

 




Sunday, April 30, 2017


UC, Obion County Hit Hard By Flooding

Lowe's was one of several spots experiencing flooding today. (Mitzi Hailey photo).


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Union City, Tenn.—Sunday’s severe thunderstorms caused electrical outages and flash flooding in the Obion County and surrounding areas.

The Gibson County Electric Membership Corporation reported numerous outages overnight and throughout the day Sunday affecting over a thousand customers over several counties. The outages affected both businesses and homes.

In an update Sunday afternoon, Gibson County EMC reported there were six new outages affecting 1,126 members in the Tiptonville and Samburg area, with scattered outages still affecting Obion and Lake Counties. Crews were working through the afternoon to restore power.

The Obion County area experienced a huge amount of rain in just a few hours, with as much as three inches to four inches of rain being reported. Local weather observer Brent Callicott measured 4.10 inches since the rains began late Saturday. The deluge caused flash flooding throughout the county and in Union City at several locations, such as McDonald’s, Lowe’s, the Magnum Inn and Green Acres Trailer Park.

By mid-afternoon, the Union City Police reported that flooding had begun receding and that no rescues or evacuations were necessary.


Saturday, April 29, 2017


Junior Fishing Rodeo Winners Announced



Photo: Fish Fry General Manager Josh "Smokey" Taylor and Josh Christensen weigh fish, while Hostess Princess Jasmine Jones speaks to the crowd today. (Lisa Stone photo).

Paris, Tenn.—Eighty-seven young anglers—some of whom were VERY young—had a blast at the Junior Fishing Rodeo Saturday morning as part of the World’s Biggest Fish Fry. The Rodeo is held every year at Williams Lake and the lake was stocked a few days before the event.

Winners have been announced:

In the 4 years old and under category: Biggest fish, Bradley Allen and Kathryn Markham; Most fish caught, Bristol Steele and Cohen Gray.
Ages 5-8: Biggest fish, Hayes Hudson and Emily Hillard; Most fish, Jake Hatcher and Kensley O’Connor.
Ages 9-12: Biggest fish, Elijah Wilson and Courtney Rhodes; and Most fish Noah Wilson and Katlyn Carter.
Albino Fish Caught: Paul Wade and Jake Townsend.



Small Fry Parade A Real Crowd Pleaser

Coleton and Hartleigh Tosh won second place for Most Original Float. (McFarlin photo).


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—Saturday morning was the time for the kids and a large crowd gathered in downtown Paris for the Small Fry Parade, one of the more popular annual fixtures of the World’s Biggest Fish Fry.

Seventeen entries, seven of them marching units from various local pre-schools and churches, marched around the court square with a large audience cheering them on. The parade was led by the Paris Fire Department and the Hostess Princess Court.

Organizers said this year’s field of entries was the biggest in the last several years, especially for the number of marching units.

Winners of the parade were:

Best Character/Costume: first, Sadie and Avery Sanders; second, Hunting For Fish Fry; third, TVCC Pre-School 3 and 4.

Most Original Float: first, Sadie and Avery Sanders; second, Hartleigh and Coleton Tosh; third, Ms. Mana’s Little Learners.

Best Decorated Float: first, Hunting For Fish Fry; second, Ms. Mana’s Little Learners; third, Jett Mooney.

Best Marching Unit: first, Carl Perkins Center; second, Joyland; third, TVCC Preschool 4 and 5.

Coolest Pet: first, Vadele Shiffon.

Best Bike: Fletcher Mooney.

Hunting For The Fish Fry won first place in Best Decorated Float and second in Best Character/Costume. (McFarlin photo).

TVCC Preschool for 3 and 4 year olds won third in Best Character/Costume. (McFarlin photo).


1,175 At Fish Tent Friday

Paris, Tenn.—Friday was a big day at the World’s Biggest Fish Fry. In addition to the 45,500 who attended the Grand Parade, the Fish Tent was especially busy, with 1,112 adults and 63 children there, with 632 attending the IPRA Rodeo. (Shannon McFarlin photo).


Small Fry Parade, Rodeo Today

Paris, Tenn.—Today is the last day of the World’s Biggest Fish Fry and there will be plenty of activities. Even though today is the last official day of the fish fry, the carnival will continue through Sunday.

The Small Fry parade begins at 10 a.m. downtown, followed by the Junior Fishing Rodeo from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Williams Lake. A car show will be held at 9 a.m. at Paris Elementary School (registration from 8-noon, judging at 9 a.m. and awards at 2 p.m.). The Arts and Crafts Show is ongoing from 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the fairgrounds and the IPRA Rodeo will again be held at 7:30 p.m. at the fairgrounds. And, the carnival will continue today from 11 a.m. to midnight, and from 1-6 p.m. Sunday.

The Fish Tent is open today from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Perkins Elected Region FFA Treasurer

Jackson, Tenn.— A Henry County High School Student has been elected as a West Tennessee FFA Officer. Murray Perkins of Paris was elected as Treasurer during the West Tennessee FFA Awards Banquet held recently.

In addition to Perkins, also elected were: President, Terrah Ivy, Scotts Hill; Vice President, Averi Cole, Covington; Secretary, Kelsea Koonce, Dyer County; Reporter, Abigayle Bartholomew, Lexington; Sentinel, Hayden Bawcum, Riverside.

This year, 15 candidates, vied for the coveted six positions. The candidates were scored on three parts: application, test, and an interview. The interview panel consisted of current teachers, former FFA members, and business & industry representatives.  

The newly elected regional officer team is responsible for the West Tennessee Greenhand Conference held in the fall. They will develop and execute workshops designed to be engaging and informative about the numerous ways to be involved in FFA and the agriculture industry. Regional Officers also play a major role in the regional banquet and working regional contests. Their first event will be ROPE (Regional Officer Preparatory Experience) presented by the Tennessee FFA State Officer Team.  To learn more about FFA visit www.tnffa.org.


Three Arrested On Drug Charges

Martin, Tenn.—Three men were arrested on drug charges at a residence in Martin Thursday morning.

At approx. 9:09 am, officers from the Martin Police Department responded to 154 West Peach St. Apartment D-4 in reference to the possible odor of marijuana.  Upon arrival, Ptl. Rachel Green came in contact with Lijah Hurst, 28 of Martin.  It was discovered that Mr. Hurst had active warrants from Wayne County, TN.  The offender requested that officers escort him to his room to put clothes on.  While in the offender’s room, Ptl. Green observed a bag of marijuana in plain view lying on a table.  Hurst did advise that the marijuana belonged to him.  Hurst was taken in to custody and formally charged with Simple Possession of Sch. VI.  The bag contained approx. 5.6 grams of marijuana. 

While at the residence, officers asked the other residents for consent to search the apartment.  After obtaining consent, Ptl. Aaron Gallimore and Ptl. Karl Jackson discovered that another resident, Ricky Bryant, 21 of Martin, also had an outstanding arrest warrant.  This warrant was from Madison Countyand he was taken in to custody at the scene.  The search resulted in officers locating 72.3 grams of marijuana, two sets of digital scales, a marijuana grinder and 0.6 grams of powder cocaine.  After an investigation, Mr. Bryant was charged with Sch. II Drug Violations and Tillson Brooks, 19 of Martin, was charged with Possession of Sch. VI with intent and drug paraphernalia.  All three offenders will be arraigned on Monday, May 1 in Weakley County General Sessions Court.





Friday, April 28, 2017


Fish Fry Parade To Be Televised

The parade stretched as far as the eye could see down E. Wood St. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

Paris, Tenn.—For those who might have missed it or for those who just might want to see it again, the World’s Biggest Fish Fry Grand Parade will be broadcast on WLJT-TV at 9 p.m. Saturday and again at 3:30 p.m. Sunday, May 7.

WLJT-TV is on Channel 8 on Charter Cable. A large crew from WLJT was on hand at today’s parade filming and doing interviews.

The Iris Festival will be broadcast at 9 p.m. Saturday, May 6, and at 3:30 p.m. Sunday, May 14. The Strawberry Festival will be broadcast at 9 p.m. Saturday, May 13, and 3:30 p.m. Sunday, May 21.


45,500 In Attendance At Grand Parade

Hostess Princess Jasmine Jones and her court wave to the crowd. (McFarlin photo).


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The sun was shining and there were smiles all around for today’s World’s Biggest Fish Fry Grand Parade. The 64th annual fish fry parade was celebrated in style, with some 100 entries and eight bands from all over the state entertaining the crowd.


Paris Police Chief Chuck Elizondo estimated this year’s attendance at 45,500. “It’s a little down from other years,” Elizondo said, “but I think the threat of rain kept some people away.”


The parade this year was dedicated to First Responders and there were plenty on display during the parade, all of whom drew loud applause from the crowd. The parade theme of “All American Event” carried over to the choice of Grand Marshals this year: Bailey Compton, Jesse Hudgins and Gunner Osborn, all who are currently in military academies. Osborn could not attend the parade due to tests at the U.S. Naval Academy.


The General Manager’s Trophy was awarded to the Miss Teen float. Other parade winners were:

Most Original: first, Little Princes; second, Downtown Paris Association; third, The Fish Tank.

Best Club or Church: first, TVCC and Celebrate Recovery; second, Cub Scouts; third, Lady Bombers softball.

Most Beautiful: first, Tiny Tots; second, Miss Teen; third, Little Miss.

Best Out of Town: first, Iris Festival; second, Dresden; third, Strawberry Festival.


Even though it’s not an election year, there were still plenty of politicians in the parade, including Tennessee Speaker of the House Beth Harwell, Senate Majority Leader Mark Norris, State Senator John Stevens, State Representative Tim Wirgau and Candidate for Governor Randy Boyd, and District Attorney Matt Stowe.


Secretary of State Tre Hargett watched the parade from the Dignitaries’ Stand, as did most of the County Mayors from our area, including Henry County Mayor Brent Greer, Obion County Mayor Benny McGuire, Carroll County Mayor Kenny McBride and various other area officials, including Paris Mayor Carlton Gerrell and city commissioners.


Former Nashville Mayor Karl Dean, who also is a candidate for Governor, attended the morning Legislative Breakfast, but said he had to leave early to get back to Nashville for a charity event.


The crowd was entertained by the bands, several of which put on special performances at the dignitaries’ stand. Bands marching in the parade included the Henry County High School Marching Patriots, Henry County Schools’ (Harrelson, henry and Lakewood), Bethel University, Lexington Middle School, Hollow Rock-Bruceton, Camden High School, Glencliff High School and McKenzie High School.


Marching Patriots Director Kyle Graves and the band perform (McFarlin photo).



Former State Rep. Don Ridgeway and Speaker of the House Beth Harwell talk things over at the parade. (McFarlin photo).




Today Is Day Of Grand Parade, Fish, Rodeo & More

Paris, Tenn.—Friday is the day of the World’s Biggest Fish Fry Grand Parade, but that isn’t all that is on the schedule.

The Grand Parade begins at 10 a.m. and as we’ve reported, the parade route is along East Wood Street to Fairgrounds Road.

The Fish Tent is open at the Henry County Fairgrounds, from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, as it will be on Saturday. All you can eat $12 for adults, $8 for children 6-12. Take-outs available.

The Arts and Crafts show continues at the fairgrounds, from 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., as it will be Saturday.

The IPRA Rodeo will be held again both Friday and Saturday at the fairgrounds, at 7:30 p.m. both nights. Admission $10, children $8.


LBL Quilting Bee This Weekend

Land Between The Lakes– The Homeplace 1850s Farm will host its annual Quilting Bee, Saturday and Sunday, April 29 and 30, 10am-3pm, at Land Between the Lakes. Visitors will learn how quilts were made in the 1850s, help complete a handmade quilt the old-fashioned way and take home 1850s quilt patterns to try.

“We will be piecing a replica Triple Irish Chain quilt. Everyone can add a stitch or two,” says Cindy Earls, Lead Interpreter at the Homeplace. “Children can learn the quilting stitch on a smaller frame, just the right size for little hands.”

During the Quilting Bee, visitors will see Blacksmithing on Saturday from 1-4pm and Broom Making on Sunday 1-4pm. Programs included with general admission; ages 13 and up $5, ages 5-12 $3 and ages 4 and under free.

Visitors are encouraged to meet the farm animals and wander the farm with its period crops and gardens. Living history interpreters can answer any questions about life in the 1850s.

 

Kentucky Unemployment Drops

Frankfort, Ky.--Unemployment rates dropped in 55 Kentucky counties between March 2016 and March 2017, rose in 53 and stayed the same in 12 counties, according to the Kentucky Office of Employment and Training, an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet.   

In our area, Calloway Co. is at 8.4 percent, down from 9.2 percent the previous month, with Fulton at 7.7 percent, down from 7.8 and Graves Co. at 6.5 percent, down from 6.9.
                   
Woodford County recorded the lowest jobless rate in the Commonwealth at 3.5 percent. It was followed by Oldham and Shelby counties, 3.7 percent each; Fayette County, 3.9 percent; Scott County, 4 percent; Spencer and Warren counties, 4.1 percent each; Jessamine County, 4.2 percent; and Allen, Boone, Campbell and Henry counties, 4.3 percent each.

Magoffin County recorded the state’s highest unemployment rate at 18.9 percent. It was followed by Elliott County, 11.6 percent; Leslie County, 11.5 percent; Knott and Harlan counties, 11 percent each; Letcher County, 10.9 percent; Menifee County, 10.7 percent; Carter County, 10.6 percent; Breathitt County, 10.4 percent; and Lawrence, Lewis and Wolfe counties, 10.3 percent each.
  
Learn more about Kentucky labor market information at www.kylmi.ky.gov.

 





Today Is Day Of Grand Parade, Fish, Rodeo & More

Paris, Tenn.—Friday is the day of the World’s Biggest Fish Fry Grand Parade, but that isn’t all that is on the schedule.

The Grand Parade begins at 10 a.m. and as we’ve reported, the parade route is along East Wood Street to Fairgrounds Road.

The Fish Tent is open at the Henry County Fairgrounds, from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, as it will be on Saturday. All you can eat $12 for adults, $8 for children 6-12. Take-outs available.

The Arts and Crafts show continues at the fairgrounds, from 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., as it will be Saturday.

The IPRA Rodeo will be held again both Friday and Saturday at the fairgrounds, at 7:30 p.m. both nights. Admission $10, children $8.


LBL Quilting Bee This Weekend

Land Between The Lakes– The Homeplace 1850s Farm will host its annual Quilting Bee, Saturday and Sunday, April 29 and 30, 10am-3pm, at Land Between the Lakes. Visitors will learn how quilts were made in the 1850s, help complete a handmade quilt the old-fashioned way and take home 1850s quilt patterns to try.

“We will be piecing a replica Triple Irish Chain quilt. Everyone can add a stitch or two,” says Cindy Earls, Lead Interpreter at the Homeplace. “Children can learn the quilting stitch on a smaller frame, just the right size for little hands.”

During the Quilting Bee, visitors will see Blacksmithing on Saturday from 1-4pm and Broom Making on Sunday 1-4pm. Programs included with general admission; ages 13 and up $5, ages 5-12 $3 and ages 4 and under free.

Visitors are encouraged to meet the farm animals and wander the farm with its period crops and gardens. Living history interpreters can answer any questions about life in the 1850s.

 

Kentucky Unemployment Drops

Frankfort, Ky.--Unemployment rates dropped in 55 Kentucky counties between March 2016 and March 2017, rose in 53 and stayed the same in 12 counties, according to the Kentucky Office of Employment and Training, an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet.   

In our area, Calloway Co. is at 8.4 percent, down from 9.2 percent the previous month, with Fulton at 7.7 percent, down from 7.8 and Graves Co. at 6.5 percent, down from 6.9.
                   
Woodford County recorded the lowest jobless rate in the Commonwealth at 3.5 percent. It was followed by Oldham and Shelby counties, 3.7 percent each; Fayette County, 3.9 percent; Scott County, 4 percent; Spencer and Warren counties, 4.1 percent each; Jessamine County, 4.2 percent; and Allen, Boone, Campbell and Henry counties, 4.3 percent each.

Magoffin County recorded the state’s highest unemployment rate at 18.9 percent. It was followed by Elliott County, 11.6 percent; Leslie County, 11.5 percent; Knott and Harlan counties, 11 percent each; Letcher County, 10.9 percent; Menifee County, 10.7 percent; Carter County, 10.6 percent; Breathitt County, 10.4 percent; and Lawrence, Lewis and Wolfe counties, 10.3 percent each.
  
Learn more about Kentucky labor market information at www.kylmi.ky.gov.

 



Thursday, April 27, 2017


Paris Police Issue Rules For Fish Fry Parade

The Downtown Paris Association's entry in 2015 (Shannon McFarlin photo).

Paris, Tenn.—Paris Police Chief Chuck Elizondo has announced rules that are to be followed by both visitors and participants at the World’s Biggest Fish Fry Grand Parade on Friday. The parade will begin at 10 a.m. and will move along East Wood Street to Fairgrounds Rd., beginning at the area around the East Wood Church of Christ.

Rules that have caused consternation among the public in the past are that no pets are allowed to be brought to the parade unless they are part of the parade and that backpacks will be checked by police officers.

Here is the complete list:

    

       Parking is allowed on the South side of the parade route at midnight.

       Leave cell phone number on the vehicle dash in case of illegal parking.  We will call before we tow.

       No bikes, ATV’s, skateboards, skates, mini bikes on route unless part of the parade or authorized i.e. Jaycees, EMS, Rescue Squad and Law Enforcement.

        No pets of any kind on the route unless part of the parade.

 

        No candy is allowed to be thrown from parade entrants but may be carried to the spectators.

 

        No poppers are to be sold or thrown on the parade route.

 

        Make sure private drives and intersections are kept clear.

 

        When the parade ends, make sure all vehicles are moved.  If left unattended in a traffic lane, they will be towed.

 

        Vendors must have a permit to sell on the parade route.

 

        Backpacks will be checked for content on the route.

 

   Parade entrants must be in possession of a valid Drivers License

 

Kustoff Honors Fish Fry On House Floor

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representative David Kustoff (TN-08) today spoke on the House floor to celebrate and honor the annual Paris-Henry County Fish Fry. This year’s event began on April 22 and will end with The Grand Parade tomorrow, April 28.

Below is the full text of Kustoff’s floor remarks.

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to recognize the World’s Biggest Fish Fry, which happens to be this week in Paris, Tennessee.

Every year at the end of April, people from all across the country travel to West Tennessee to take part in a week-long celebration that includes parades, a carnival, rodeos, dances, catfish races and much more.

“The Fish Fry,” as folks call it in West Tennessee, originated in 1938 as one of many Mule Days when farmers gathered to trade their products, do their shopping and enjoy the fellowship of their community.

By the 1950s, the tractor replaced the mule, so the good citizens of Paris and Henry County started a new event that is now known in West Tennessee and around the country to be “The World’s Biggest Fish Fry.”

The festival ends with the main event this Friday, April 28, where more than five tons of catfish will be cooked leading up to a grand 2 hour-long parade.

I thank the joint Chambers of Commerce of Paris and Henry County for their leadership in preserving this great West Tennessee tradition.

Here is the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g4OE1FxN2iA



900 On Hand For Fish Tent Opening Night

IPRA Rodeo, Arts & Crafts Tonight


Breading catfish last night: Chris Damesworth, Barry Jones, Drew Williams, Kenzie Williams, Madison Capps, and Eric Madison. (Shannon McFarlin photo).


Paris, Tenn.—It was a busy night at the Fish Tent’s opening night last night, as a total of 845 adults and 55 children were on hand for the fish plates served. The World’s Biggest Fish Fry has had an especially busy week so far, with huge crowds for the carnival and 199 attending the Country Dance on Tuesday night.


Meanwhile, the Demolition Derby that was cancelled Saturday night due to rainy and muddy conditions has been rescheduled for May 27 at the Henry County Fairgrounds.


Today’s schedule at the Fish Fry includes the opening of the Arts and Crafts Show and the IPRA Rodeo, both at the fairgrounds. The Arts and Crafts Show will be from 5-8:30 p.m. tonight and from 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday.


The IPRA Rodeo will be held tonight at 7:30 p.m., which is AT&T Family Night with admission of $5 and children under six free with paying adult. The Rodeo also will be held at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday nights, with admission of $10 for adults and $8 for children.


Tune In To Our Stations, Sites For Parade Coverage


The HCHS Marching Patriots in the 2015 parade. (Shannon McFarlin photo).


Paris, Tenn.—As we have for many years, we will be airing the World’s Biggest Fish Fry Grand Parade live on our air on Friday morning.


And you’ll have a choice. The parade will be broadcast on FM 101.7, AM 710 and AM 1240.


Commentary will be provided by Susan Jones and Mary Kate Ridgeway, with engineering by Brad Hosford. Our crew will be stationed right next to the Dignitaries’ bleachers in front of Paris Inns and Suites. As always, we’ll be sitting in a brand new truck provided for the parade by Pepper’s.


News Director Shannon McFarlin will be taking photos and writing up the stories, which will be posted on our website and on both of our Facebook pages at WENK/WTPR and KF99/KQ105.


The parade will boast close to 100 entries this year, with eight high school bands performing along the parade route.


The parade will begin on E. Wood Street near the intersection with Ogburn Street and move down East Wood to Fairgrounds Rd.


Silver Carp Dying Off In Kentucky, Barkley Lakes



Nashville, Tenn. --- Boaters may have noticed recently that there is a large number of fish dying along the shoreline throughout Kentucky and Barkley lakes, an occurrence that the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency is aware of and investigating. 


The dead fish are silver carp, an invasive species that can negatively impact native fish and recreational boating. Because of these threats, the TWRA has been working to stem their expansion into new waters. “While we are trying to learn how to slow or stop their expansion, the recent die-off of thousands of fish for whatever reason has occurred naturally,” said Frank Fiss, Chief of TWRA’s Fish Division. “We have collected samples of the dead fish and sent them to a lab to identify the cause of the disease.  This type of analysis is not always conclusive, but we are trying to gather as much information as possible.”  


Silver carp and bighead carp are among a family of invasive “Asian” carp that were imported to the USA in the early 1970s.  They escaped into the Mississippi River decades ago and have steadily spread into numerous bodies of waters, including rivers in Tennessee. Growing numbers of carp are a threat to native species because Asian carp rely primarily on plankton as a food source, which is an also important source of food for native species, especially at smaller sizes. Silver carp can also pose dangers to boaters as they often respond to motor vibration or noise by leaping as boats approach or pass through schooling fish that can weigh 30 to 40 pounds. 


“Most of the dead fish that we have seen have been two years old but there are a lot of dead fish, and we are probably only seeing a tiny percentage of what actually inhabits the reservoir,” said Fiss. “The widespread die off does not seem to be impacting other fish species, which is good news for game fish and anglers” said Fiss. “We appreciate all the reports we have received, and we want everyone to know we are aware of the die off and are monitoring it.” 


UTM Honors Robert Kirkland



Martin, Tenn.– Robert Kirkland, co-founder of Kirkland’s retail chain, founder of the Discovery Park of America and co-founder of the Robert E. and Jenny D. Kirkland Foundation, was posthumously honored with a Clayton R. McWhorter Innovation Award during the University of Tennessee at Martin Ned Ray McWherter Institute’s annual Igniting Innovation event April 20. This award is given to area or regional businesspeople who have made significant contributions to the economic development, quality of life and overall wellbeing of the state or region. Recipients are chosen annually by the students participating in the Ned Ray McWherter Institute. Accepting the award on Robert Kirkland’s behalf are members and friends of the Kirkland family (l-r) Donna Fielder, Tab Kirkland, Jenny Kirkland, Martha Rippy, Jim Rippy, Carol Latimer and Bill Latimer.


Roger Williams Named Innovator Of Year


 

Martin, Tenn.--Roger Williams (UT Martin ’81), chief executive officer of Williams Sausage Company in Union City, was named Innovator of the Year during the University of Tennessee at Martin Ned Ray McWherter Institute’s annual Igniting Innovation event April 20. He also received a Clayton R. McWhorter Innovation Award. This award is given to area or regional businesspeople who have made significant contributions to the economic development, quality of life and overall wellbeing of the state or region. Recipients are chosen annually by the students participating in the Ned Ray McWherter Institute. Williams Sausage Company has been family owned and operated in Union City since 1958 and plans to expand to a second manufacturing plant in the area. Pictured during the awards ceremony are Williams family members (l-r) Juli, Roger, David and Beth Williams.



Chalk Crawl For Kids Is Saturday



Paris, Tenn.--The second Annual Chalk Crawl for Kids sponsored by the Downtown Paris Association will be held at 10:15 a.m. Saturday immediately following the World’s Biggest Fish Fry Small Fry Parade. Children receive FREE chalk to create colorful FISH on the sidewalk on the east side of the courthouse (Poplar Street). The Chalk Crawl will be led by local artists, Joe Snow, Donna Revelee, and Ann Stapp.   






Wednesday, April 26, 2017


Fish Fry Tent Is Open!

Paris, Tenn.—It’s open! The day many people wait for all year long is upon us, with the official opening of the World’s Biggest Fish Fry Fish Tent. A steady stream of hundreds enjoyed the fresh homemade plates of fried catfish, white beans, hush puppies, French fries, and slaw Wednesday evening. Hostess Princess Jasmine Jones threw out the first hush puppy to her mother Melony Jones and words of thanks for the Jaycees, suppliers and many volunteers from General Manager Josh “Smokey” Taylor and former GM “Tater” Hayes. The fish tent will be open every day now until the Fish Fry ends on Saturday. The Fish Fry is in its 64th year and is sponsored by the Paris-Henry Co. Jaycees. Top photo, Doug Braden of Paris shows off his plate, while at bottom, “Tater” Hayes and Michael Cox pick up the huge ball of tin foil that has been collected during the past 16 years of the fish fry. (Shannon McFarlin photos).


Everyone Loves A Parade

Paris, Tenn.—A huge crowd was on hand this morning for the annual Rhea Elementary School Kindergarten Fish Fry Parade. And it was different this year. Since Rhea School is undergoing construction right now, the parade was held at the Henry County High School Stadium, with a sheriff’s escort and music and announcements blaring over the public address system. Top photo, Little Rylee Vetzel on tractor is at the head of Teacher Sara Rowlett’s class, while Teacher Belinda Davis and her class wave to everyone in the stands. (Shannon McFarlin photos).

 




Dr. Mark Arant Named MSU Provost

 

Murray, Ky. — Following an extensive national search, Murray State University President Bob Davies has announced that Dr. Mark Arant will be the next provost and vice president for academic affairs, pending approval by the University’s Board of Regents. 

In this role, Arant will serve as the University’s chief academic officer, responsible for the oversight of all academic areas. He will begin his duties July 1. 

Since 2014, Arant has served as the provost and vice president for academic affairs at Northeastern State University where he led the development of the strategic plan for academic affairs, established new agreements for international exchange programs and created new concurrent enrollment initiatives with area high schools. He also led the maintenance of the University’s accreditation with the Higher Learning Commission and laid the foundation for a new school of Visual and Performing Arts. 

In addition to his service at Northeastern State University, Arant has held positions at the University of Arkansas – Fort Smith and the University of Louisiana at Monroe. He earned his Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of Alabama and his bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Louisiana Tech University. 

Two Clarksville Men Nabbed On Drug Charges

Paris, Tenn.—Two Clarksville men landed in the Henry County Jail after a traffic stop on Hwy. 79N on Tuesday. Jamarcus Steptoe and Chausee Sebree were both arrested by the Metro Crime Unit on drug charges, with Sebree also charged with illegal possession of a handgun.

Following a traffic stop, Henry County Sheriff Monte Belew’s K9 “Si” alerted to the odor of narcotics on the vehicle and upon a search, a felony amount of marijuana was found in the car.

Assisting with the arrest was the TBI, the Tennessee Highway Patrol, and Paris Police.



Tori Seng Receives Outstanding Student Award

Martin, Tenn. – Tori Seng, of Union City, received the spring 2017 Beth Maloan Outstanding Student Employee Award from the University of Tennessee at Martin during a presentation April 23. Seng is a senior who will receive a bachelor’s degree in communications during commencement exercises May 6.

The Beth Maloan Outstanding Student Employee Award is named for the late Beth Maloan, longtime UT Martin director of budgeting and payroll, who was a strong advocate of student employment. It recognizes exemplary work ethic and commitment to the university. The award is given each semester to a student nominated by his or her supervising office or department.

Seng currently serves as program director for UT Martin’s award-winning student-run campus radio station, WUTM 90.3 FM “The Hawk.” She began her tenure with the station as business and traffic director, later working her way up to news production director the following year. Now, as the station’s student manager, she is responsible for music and news programming, remote broadcasts and administrative duties, as well as other details of the station’s daily activities.


Robinson Speaks At Top Ten Banquet

Union City, Tenn.—One of Union City High School’s most treasured alumni was the speaker at this week’s Top Ten Banquet. Jon Robinson, General Manager of the Tennessee Titans took time out of his busy schedule to speak to the students about the importance of education.

The Top Ten Students in all four grades were honored at the banquet, which included a special presentation by Curriculum Coordinator Vicki Wilkinson. Presentation of awards was given to the Seniors by Director of Schools Gary Houston, Juniors by Principal Wes Kennedy, Sophomores by Jacob Cross and Freshmen by David Byars.

 

Fish Tent Opens Tonight

Ross Paschall at the Fish Tent opening in 2015. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

Paris, Tenn.—Today is a big day at the World’s Biggest Fish Fry—the day some people wait for all year. It’s the day the Fish Tent opens with the traditional hush puppy toss.

Hostess Princess Jasmine Jones will officially open the tent at the Henry County Fairgrounds with the hush puppy toss at 5 p.m. and the tent will be open until 9 p.m. tonight. The all-you-can-eat catfish plates are $12 for adults and $8 for children 6-12. The plates contain fried catfish, hush puppies, French fries, white beans, slaw and drink. You can also carry out your order.

The Christian Concert will be held tonight from 7-9 p.m. with entertainment by the Brett Perkins Band. Admission is $5.

Also tonight, the carnival continues and will be open from 5 to 11 p.m.


MSU Profs Awarded $233,931 Grant

 

Professors Dr. Daniel Johnson (left) and Dr. Kevin Miller (right). (MSU photo).

Murray, Ky. — Murray State University Department of Chemistry Associate Professors Dr. Kevin Miller and Dr. Daniel Johnson have been awarded a $233,931 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to study conductive materials and electroactive technologies.

The grant is sponsored by the NSF Division of Materials Research and is part of the Research in Undergraduate Institutions (RUI) initiative, which supports the development of nationally recognized research programs and the integration of research and education at primarily undergraduate institutions (PUIs).

“Undergraduate research is a must-have for students coming from PUIs in order to compete with students from larger, research-oriented institutions,” said Miller. “With these funds, we can provide paid summer opportunities for students to gain the hands-on education and research experience they need to be more competitive when applying to graduate programs or in pursuing a job.” 

The grant will offer summer research positions to 12-15 students within the next three years at Murray State as well as efforts in research and undergraduate education during the academic year, possibly affecting an additional 15-20 students each year.

 

Friday Closings For Fish Fry Parade

Paris, Tenn.—The city of Paris has announced its closings for Friday, the day of the World’s Biggest Fish Fry grand Parade. All schools in Henry County also are closed Friday.

 

CITY HALL WILL BE CLOSED FRIDAY, APRIL 28.

ALL EMERGENCY SERVICES WILL BE ON REGULAR SCHEDULE.

 

THE CITY OF PARIS PUBLIC WORKS DEPARTMENT WILL BE CLOSED FRIDAY, APRIL 28.

 

THE LANDFILL WILL BE CLOSED FRIDAY, APRIL 28 AND SATURDAY, APRIL 29, 2017. IT WILL REOPEN AT 7 A.M. MONDAY, MAY 1.

 

THE ANIMAL SHELTER WILL BE CLOSED FRIDAY, APRIL 28 AND SATURDAY, APRIL 29. IT WILL REOPEN AT 11:30 A.M. MONDAY, MAY 1.

 

THE PARIS CIVIC CENTER WILL BE CLOSED FRIDAY, APRIL 28, 2017. IT WILL REOPEN AT 8:00 A.M. ON SATURDAY, APRIL 29.

 




Tuesday, April 25, 2017


BPU Approves New Water, Sewer Rates

Board members listen to reports from General Manager Terry Wimberley. (McFarlin photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—At its regular meeting Tuesday morning, the Paris Board of Public Utilities approved a flat fee for both sewer and water hookups for both inside and outside the Paris city limits.

In both cases, the fees represent an increase in fees charged to better reflect the actual current costs of installation. BPU General Manager Terry Wimberley said water tap fees have not increased in ten years and sewer tap fees have not increased 19 years.

The new residential tap costs for both sewer and water will be $1,000 in each category, effective July 1. That compares to the current cost of $490 for the city and $735 for outside the city for water taps and $600 for the city and $900 outside the city for sewer taps.

Director of Water and Wastewater Operations Tony Brown said, “We wanted something that would be fair to the customers and to BPU. We just want to cover our costs, but we also want to encourage growth.”

Because both fees are part of the Paris city ordinance, the proposed fees will be presented to the city commission for approval. A public hearing on both will be held at next week’s city commission meeting.

In other business, Wimberley said that the Euro Group has paid back in less than a year the $251,000 it borrowed from BPU to expand its operations. Eurotranciatura USA is located on Hwy. 54 in the former Tecumseh plant.

Wimberley said, “That means that we now have $414,000 in our revolving loan fund.”

Wimberley also reported that BPU has maintained its AAA-3 bond rating from Moody’s. “They gave us a lot of positives for a utility our size. This sets us up well if we need any bond issues in the future,” he said.


Large Crowd For Kick Off Dance



Paris, Tenn.—The 2017 World’s Biggest Fish Fry Hostess Princess Court poses before Monday night’s Kick-Off Dance in downtown Paris, top photo. Queen Jasmine Jones and her court will be familiar faces this week as they preside over the 64th annual fish fry. A large crowd was on hand for the event, which included children’s games on the courthouse lawn. Everyone danced to the music of the Ray Lewis Band. Bottom photo, Event Chair Stephanie Cooper videotapes kids during their sack races. (Shannon McFarlin photos).





Carnival, Country Dance Today


Paris, Tenn.—The World’s Biggest Fish Fry gets underway in earnest today, with the opening of the Carnival and the annual Country Dance.


The Carnival, which this year is operated by Kissel Entertainment, will open at 5 p.m. and run to 11 p.m. The Country Dance will be held from 7-10 p.m. Admission will be $5 and entertainment will be provided by The Legends.




Caleb Brannon Excels In National Contest



Students from the MSU Agribusiness Team, from left, Caleb Brannon, Puryear, Tennessee; Kayla Burroughs, Hopkinsville; Hannah Ice, West Frankfort, Illinois; and Chandler Christian, Owensboro. 



Murray, Ky. — Students from the Murray State University Hutson School of Agriculture—including a young man from Puryear--won multiple contests at the 2017 North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture Student Judging Conference.


Senior Agribusiness Major Caleb Brannon of Puryear placed third high individual in each of the agribusiness and computer contests.


Held at Kansas State University, MSU Agribusiness Club students participated in five contests: ag communications, agribusiness, computer applications, livestock management and the knowledge bowl. Murray State students placed as the top team in the four-year division in the agribusiness competition and in the ag communications competition.  


“It was great to compete with my fellow club members against schools from all across the nation and come out victorious in our contests,” Brannon said.


Including Brannon, members of the agribusiness team included Kayla Burroughs, Hopkinsville; Chandler Christian, Owensboro; and Hannah Ice, West Frankfort, Illinois. 


The computer applications team consisted of Kayla Burroughs, Brannon, Rebecca Mackey of Elizabethtown and Caitlin Oakes of Olmstead. Benjamin Hornback of Slaughters competed in livestock management. 


UC Man Injured Running From Shots


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

 

Union City, Tenn.—A 22-year-old Union City man was treated at Baptist Memorial Hospital after he injured himself running from someone shooting at him.


Union City Police were called to Parkview Manor Apartments around 10 p.m. Monday night on a call of shots fired. The caller told 911 that three subjects were chasing another man behind the buildings and that several shots were heard.


Officers found the victim behind 717 Sunswept Drive, yelling for help. He said he fell while he was running away and that a black male shot at him three to five times. According to the report, the man was injured in his left leg.


UTM Sorority Village To Open


Martin, Tenn. – The public is invited to attend a ribbon-cutting event beginning at 1:30 p.m., April 28, to officially open the University of Tennessee at Martin’s new Sorority Village complex. 


The four houses, located off Peach Street adjacent to the University Courts apartments, give the sisters of Alpha Omicron Pi, Alpha Delta Pi, Chi Omega and Zeta Tau Alpha sorority a place to call home. They are not residences, but rather provide meeting and social space for the organizations to gather. 


The construction project came with a total price tag of approximately $500,000, most of which was donated by chapter alumnae. 


The official ribbon cutting will be held in the parking lot at the top of Village Lane, and attendees will be able to tour the four houses, weather permitting. 

For more information, contact Rachel Stephens, student life coordinator at 731-881-7527.


 





Monday, April 24, 2017


Setting Up The WBFF Carnival

Paris, Tenn.—Three young men from South Africa are among dozens of employees from Kissel Entertainment who have been busy since Sunday setting up the carnival for the World’s Biggest Fish Fry. Johann Van Straaten, Gerharde Vermueling and Dean Ford were setting up the ferris wheel Monday afternoon for the carnival, which will be open Tuesday at the Henry County Fairgrounds. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

 

WBFF Poster Contest Winners Announced

Jaycee Patrick Cooper looks over poster entries. (Shannon McFarlin photo).


Paris, Tenn.—The Paris-Henry County Jaycees have been busy putting all of the entries in the annual World’s Biggest Fish Fry poster contest on the walls at the Commercial Building at the Henry County Fairgrounds. The judges have done their work and the Jaycees have announced the winners in this year’s contest, starting with the General Manager’s Choice, which is Anna Daigle, a fourth grader in Mrs. Brown’s class at Paris Elementary School.

Other winners are:

Kindergarten - 1st grade:

1st place:   Trevor Webb           1st grade Rhea

2nd place:  Sealya Chadwell     Kindergarten Harrelson

3rd place:   Ayden Lawrence     Kindergarten  Lakewood

2nd - 3rd Grade:

1st place:    Harrison Steedly     2nd grade Lakewood

2nd place:   Ali Taylor                 2nd grade Lakewood

3rd place:    Will Roberson         3rd grade PES

4th - 5th Grade:

1st place:     Allie Veglio              5th grade PES

2nd place:    Dakota Ables          4th grade Harrelson

3rd place:     Ella Mathis              4th grade Home School


Springville Man Killed In Accident

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—A Springville man was killed in a one-vehicle wreck Sunday night on Hwy. 69A.

Andy Perdue, age 38, was pronounced dead at the scene. Funeral arrangements for Perdue will be at Stockdale-Malin Funeral Home in Benton County. A funeral home spokesperson said Monday afternoon the family has not decided whether to hold the funeral at the Big Sandy or the Camden funeral home.

According to Sgt. Brad Willbanks of the Tennessee Highway Patrol, Perdue was driving a 1994 Ford four-door south on 69A. While negotiating a left hand curve, the vehicle went off the right shoulder of the roadway and struck a culvert. The vehicle went airborne, striking a tree against the driver’s side door. The vehicle then came to rest next to the tree.


Mason Named As Next Grove Principal

Paris, Tenn.—Henry County Schools Superintendent Dr. Brian Norton has announced that Tim Mason has been named the next principal of E.W. Grove School. Mason currently is Assistant Principal at Grove.

Mason will replace Grove Principal and Long-time Henry County Educator Sam Tharpe, who has announced his pending retirement. Mason’s appointment as principal will be effective July 1.

Mason, with 20 years of Tennessee public education experience, has served Henry County Schools for 12 years as a teacher and school administrator, with all except one at HCHS. He recently completed the inaugural class of the Governor’s Academy for School Leadership, a year-long program designed to increase school leadership capacity and support individual growth.

Mason received his undergraduate degree at Trevecca Nazarene University and completed his Master’s degree in School Administration at Bethel University.  


Learning About The Butterflies And Bees

Springville, Tenn.—Greyson Crawford is getting a first-hand look at displays from Volunteer Cheryl McHugh at Saturday’s Earth Day program at the Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center. A good-sized crowd of 119 visitors were on hand for the program. Speakers included Danny Kimberlin on Monarch Conservation, Bernie Leslie and James Hinton on beekeeping, Glenn Lee on Native Pollinators, and Carol Reese on Native plant gardening. Partners providing displays and activities included Quail Forever, the Kentucky Lake Beekeepers’ Association, the Camden Garden Club, Glenn Lee and Laura French. In bottom photo, Lee, Vickie Miller, Colsyn Edwards and Kimi Fitzhugh look over a display. (Jean Owens photos).

 


Man Jailed On 2nd Degree Murder Attempt Charge

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—A 20-year-old Mansfield man is in the Henry County Jail on $80,000 bond this morning on a charge of criminal attempt to commit second degree murder after he allegedly ran over another man on Friday.

Luke Williamson of 1215 Mansfield Rd., will appear in General Sessions Court on Tuesday on the charge.

According to Henry County Sheriff’s Captain Adam Jenkins, sheriff’s deputies were called to the emergency room of the Henry County Medical Center where the victim was being treated for injuries.

Jenkins said Williamson, driving a 2005 Dodge pickup truck “did run over the victim intentionally” while the victim was standing in the roadway in front of Williamson. The incident occurred in the morning during an altercation between the two. Williamson was arrested Friday afternoon.

 


UC Store Clerks Cited For Selling To Minors

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Union City, Tenn.—Clerks at two convenience stores in Union City were cited for selling alcohol to minors Friday night. The Union City Police conducted compliance checks at local stores that evening.

An employee of the Union City Police who is under the age of 21 entered local stores and attempted to purchase beer. They were able to purchase a six pack of beer at both the Pocket’s Convenience Store at 1605 W. Reelfoot Ave., and Maverick at 420 W. Reelfoot.

Cited were clerks Nicholas Lugo of Union City, working for Maverick; and Wendy Wilson of Troy, working for Pocket’s.


WBFF Kick-Off Street Dance Tonight

Paris, Tenn.—The annual Kick-Off Street Dance for the World’s Biggest Fish Fry will be held from 7-9 p.m. tonight in downtown Paris. It is a free event and the Ray Lewis Band of Paris will perform.


Downtown Cruise-In Set For Tuesday

Paris, Tenn.--The Downtown Paris Association Cruise In season will open Tuesday, April 25th, rocking the Square with music provided by “The Old Spirits”.  Downtown Cruise Ins are the 4th Tuesdays in April, May, June, August, and September from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.   

This is a free event sponsored by the Downtown Paris Association.  It all happens on the east side of the Court Square.  Poplar Street will be closed to traffic at 5 for classic car parking.  Bring a classic car for prize giveaways.  Bring a lawn chair and enjoy great music.  You can enjoy delicious food from Perry’s BBQ.  There will be craft vendors and a fun time in downtown Paris.

For more information, contact the Downtown Paris Association at 731-653-7274, check the Downtown Paris phone app, or visit our website at www.VisitDowntownParis.com.

 

Firearms Stolen From UC Residence

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Union City, Tenn.—Firearms were stolen from a residence in Union City sometime during the day on Friday.

Police were called to 915 High St. by the residents, who were standing outside. They said the door was kicked in and they didn’t want to enter the house because firearms were inside.

Police noted the door on the west side of the home was kicked in, with a shoe print visible on the door. They entered and ensured the house was clear and found the gun cabinet open and empty.

In all five firearms were stolen: Remington bolt action gray shotgun, Remington 20 guage shotgun, Ruger .22 caliber rifle, black and silver, semi-automatic with Nikon scope; 16 guage Lever action rifle; and Smith and Wesson 9 mm semi-automatic black in color.


Swing Into Spring At MSU

Murray, Ky. — At 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 25, historic Lovett Auditorium will be swinging with the sounds of three big bands and two small groups as well as a live radio broadcast on 91.3 WKMS, as it would have been made from a remote location in the 1930s or 1940s. 

Paris Native Dr. Todd E. Hill, director of jazz studies at Murray State University, has invited the vocal talents of radio announcer Mark Welch, plus the duo of Dr. Trey and Dr. Vee (played by Dr. Robert Valentine of Paris and Dr. Robert McGaughey, respectively) to add comedic bits and announcements to set the mood of a live broadcast from the big band era. Although not limiting their repertoire to music of the 1930s and 40s, the bands will concentrate on materials in the swing style and feature standards by student vocalists Melanie Davis, senior from Mt. Vernon, Indiana, and Kayla Litte, junior from Murray.

Dr. Hill will direct the Jazz Orchestra and small combos, while graduate assistant Mr. Jonathan Nash of Paris, Tennessee will direct the MSU Jazz Band and Jazz Lab Big Band on the broadcast. 

While this is only the fifth year for the Swing Into Spring broadcast, the concert featuring all MSU Jazz Ensembles was begun Dr. Hill’s first year on faculty at Murray State University. 

The public is invited, and there is no admission fee. Those who come early will enjoy a pre-concert sound check by the Jazz Lab Big Band and the Gold Jazz Combo.


Paris Man Arrested On Drug Charges

Paris, Tenn.—A former Paris man was arrested on drug charges Saturday night in Paris.

Storme Hilliard, 22, of Lexington, was arrested on Volunteer Drive around 8 p.m. He was charged with possession of a controlled substance with intent to sell and possession of drug paraphernalia.

He also was arrested on outstanding warrants out of Shelby Co.




Saturday, April 22, 2017


Glo For A Cure Raises $20,000 For CF

Union City, Tenn.—The Glo for a Cure run was another huge success Friday night as a large group of runners/walkers gathered in downtown Union City to raise money for Cystic Fibrosis Research. Participant Brent Hinson said over $20,000 was raised this year. Over four years, the local organization has raised over $75,000. The Glo for a Cure run began its first year in April of 2013. The first run raised $9,000. The run is dedicated to Ada Rogers, who was diagnosed with CF as an infant and is hosted by her family and friends.(Brent Hinson photos).

 


Bed Races, Demo Derby Cancelled Due To Weather

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The weather played havoc on the World’s Biggest Fish Fry’s kick-off activities Saturday morning, with both the Bed Races and the Demolition Derby being cancelled.

Fish Fry General Manager Josh “Smokey” Taylor said a make-up date will be announced for the Demolition Derby, but there will be no make-up date for the Bed Races. “We only had a couple of calls about the Bed Races anyway, so we’re just going to go ahead and cancel that one,” Taylor said.

Overnight and morning rain made it impossible to move equipment onto the arena at the fairgrounds for the Demolition Derby today, he said. “As soon as we have the make-up date, we’ll announce it.”

The early morning Hush Puppy 5K race was held, with 49 runners running between the rain drops.


A Look Back At The Fish Fry



Paris, Tenn.--With the annual World's Biggest Fish Fry upon us, let's take a look back at the past events when all of the activities and the parade were held in downtown Paris. In photo, large crowds enjoy the parade in 1956. 


There's Something For Everyone At Fish Fry

What everyone has look forward to when the fish tent opens this week. (McFarlin photo).


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The biggest week of the year for Paris is upon us: the annual World’s Biggest Fish Fry. Specifically, the 64th annual World’s Biggest Fish Fry and it begins tomorrow and runs through April 29.

This year’s event will mix old and new, with bed races being added to this year’s schedule. The activities will be held all over: the fairgrounds, downtown Paris, Henry County High School, Paris Elementary, and of course, the grand parade which is held on East Wood St.

Three events will kick off the fish fry on Saturday, April 22: 5K Hushpuppy Dash at 8 a.m. at HCHS, bed races at noon in downtown Paris and the demolition derby at 7 p.m. at the fairgrounds.

The street dance, which used to kick off fish fry activities, will be held at 7 p.m. Monday, April 24, in downtown Paris. Free admission, with music by the Ray Lewis Band of Paris.

This year’s carnival begins Tuesday, April 25, and runs through April 30, at the Henry County Fairgrounds. Also set for April 25 is the Country Dance, with music by The Legends, for $5. That also is held at the fairgrounds.

The fish tent will open at 5 p.m. Wednesday, with the traditional ‘hush puppy toss’, which will be performed by the year’s Hostess Princess Jasmine Jones. The fish tent will be open from Wednesday through April 29. Price for fish dinners this year is $12 for adults, $8 for children. All you can eat catfish, hush puppies, beans, slaw, French fries and drink. The fish tent is located at the fairgrounds.

The Christian Concert will be held Wednesday at 7 p.m., featuring the Brett Perkins Band, admission $5 at the fairgrounds, with the arts and crafts show opening Thursday and running through Saturday, also at the fairgrounds.

The annual IPRA Rodeo will be held three nights Thursday, Friday and Saturday at the fairgrounds.

The Grand Parade begins at 10 a.m. Friday, April 28, and follows the same parade route along East Wood and onto Fairgrounds Rd.

A car show will be held at 9 a.m. at Paris Elementary School on Saturday, with the annual Small Fry Parade set for 10 a.m. downtown, followed by the catfish races. The Junior Fishing Rodeo will be held at 11 a.m. at Williams Lake.




Friday, April 21, 2017


Items Stolen From Abernathy’s Recovered; Five Nabbed

        

           Gary Venable                  Britton Primm               Teth Ammons

                                  

                            Sara Ammons                             Ashley Walding

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Dresden, Tenn.—Five people were arrested Thursday in Weakley County after a large amount of stolen goods was found on property at which they were living—including items stolen from Abernathy’s in Union City.

The five people were also arrested on drug charges after meth, hydrocodone pills and drug paraphernalia was found at their home.

The five are: Gary Lamar Venable, age 38; Britton Alan Primm, age 30; Teth Ammons, age 34; Sara Ammons, age 24; and Ashley Walding. Both females gave their addresses as Ripley, Tenn., while the three males told investigators they lived at 422 Old Salem Rd., near Martin, where the arrests were made.

On a tip, investigators from the Weakley Co. Sheriff’s Office went to the Old Salem Rd. address searching for the stolen four-wheeler. Before officers arrived, a second call came in saying someone was moving the four-wheeler.

When Investigator Marty Plunk arrived, he saw someone driving a Polaris Razor into the garage at the address. According to Capt. Randall McGowan, the person who rented the apartment gave permission for deputies to look in the garage.

Inside the garage, Plunk located a motorcycle stolen from Lauderdale, Tenn., a car stolen from Madison Co. and the Polaris Razor stolen from Abernathy’s.

A search warrant was then obtained and more items believed stolen from Abernathy’s were recovered. Deputies also found meth packaged for resale, hydrocodone pills, scales, meth pipes and a small amount of cash, McGowan said.

Investigators found another four-wheeler stolen from Lauderdale Co., a second Polaris Razor stolen from Abernathy’s. Both are valued at $27,000 each.

All five people arrested are charged with theft over $1,000, theft over $2500, theft over $10,000, and one count of possession of meth.

McGowan said the case is still under investigation and investigators from Lauderdale Co., Obion County, Union City, Martin, the Tennessee Highway Patrol and Jackson Police are involved.

 


Butterflies Are Free



Paris, Tenn.—The children in the W.G. Rhea Library Pre-School Story Hour had an experience Thursday morning they won’t soon forget. With Children’s Librarian Kayla Nation and Library Director Connie McSwain, the children released butterflies that were hatched in the pre-school room earlier this week. McSwain purchased a kit several weeks ago that include larvae, food stuff and other equipment and a total of nine butterflies were hatched inside a netted cage on Saturday and Sunday. Nation and McSwain took the children outside where there were a lot of ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ as the butterflies were released. (Shannon McFarlin photos).


Learning By Doing Good Deeds



Paris, Tenn.—With the Plus Endowment Program grants in the Henry County School System, learning comes in all forms. Second graders at Lakewood Elementary got a lesson in doing good for all creatures recently. The classrooms of Ms. Wimberley and Ms. Banks enhanced their reading curriculum by offering incentives to students to read more books. After each student accumulated a set number of accelerated reading points, they earned dog treats/food/supplies. The students then took the items to both animal shelters in Henry County: the Henry County Sheriff’s Office Animal Shelter and the city of Paris shelter. In photo, students are shown donating their items at the city of Paris shelter. (Plus Endowment photo).


Officers Find 778 Ecstacy Pills In Side Panels


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director


Union City, Tenn.—Two men from Indiana were arrested early this morning on drug charges by Union City Police when, thanks to the department’s K9 “Bator”, 778 Ecstacy pills were found in the side panels of their car. Their car was seized, as was $42,000 in cash also found in the car.


Dairon Merritt of Gary, Ind.; and Larry Saulsberry of Evansville were arrested on possession charges and window tint violation. Merritt also was arrested on a felony warrant from Indiana on charges of drugs and handgun possession and maintaining a nuisance building.


The car they were driving was stopped in the 1100 block of North Everett Blvd. a little after midnight on a window tint violation. Officers smelled a masking odor coming from the passenger seat and saw Merritt trying to cover a small amount of marijuana on his lap.

The driver Saulsberry told officers there were no drugs or weapons in the car and gave permission for a search. An empty clear baggie was found in Saulsberry’s shoe. The K9 “Bator” alerted on the driver’s side door and officers disassembled the panels and found wedged in the back eight baggies containing 778 Ecstacy pills.



Abernathy’s Offers $25,000 Reward



Union City, Tenn.—Abernathy’s of Union City is offering a $25,000 reward for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the suspects in the latest burglary at the business. 

Video surveillance footage shows that the burglary happened between 1:30 and 2 a.m. Easter Sunday.  

The list of items stolen includes two 2017 Polaris Rzr 1000 Gold Rock Editions, one Honda 420 Green Rancher, and one 2017 Polaris Turbo Titanium.


Abernathy’s has been robbed repeatedly in the past couple of years. The video shows that entry was made through the back fence.


Obion County Students To View Simulator


Union City, Tenn.— The West TN Distracted Driving Simulator will be set up at Obion County high schools next week. The simulator visit is made possible by a grant from the Tennessee Governor’s Highway Safety Office and will be set-up at Union City High School on Monday, April 24th, with South Fulton High School on Tuesday, April 25 th, and Obion County Central High School on Wednesday, April 26th.


The Union City Police Department in conjunction with the Tennessee Governor’s Highway Safety Office will be traveling to the schools to promote their campaign, Thumbs Down to Texting and Driving.


 High school students from Union City, South Fulton and Obion Central will get to experience first hand the devastating effects of texting and driving by operating the interactive driving simulator that illustrates the grim effects of distracted driving or driving while impaired. 


Union City Police Lt. Melvin Dowell said, “According to the “Young Drivers Crash Rate Rankings” for 2016 for Obion County, we have the 38th worst ranking in the State of Tennessee, that’s 303 crashes. By utilizing the simulator, the Union City Police Department along with local law enforcement agencies are enthusiastic that this can become an ‘eye opening’ experience for our young drivers.”



McKenzie To Get Dollar Tree


McKenzie, Tenn.—The city of McKenzie will be getting a new store—but not the one they had expected.


After building has dragged on for four years, construction of the 8,400 square foot retail store the Highland Drive and Oak Street intersection has been promised by the builders. However, originally intended as a Family Dollar Store, it now will be a Dollar Tree.

Construction is expected to begin (yet again) over the next few weeks. 


The McKenzie Municipal Regional Planning Commission was informed of the change at its recent meeting. 


“Kids Got Talent” Set


Union City, Tenn.—The Carl Perkins Center will hold a “Kids Got Talent” contest at 2 p.m. Saturday, April 29, at the Masquerade Theatre at 120 S. First St. in Union City.

Contest entry fee is $15 and admission is $5. First place is $100 cash.


Marching Patriots To Hold Car Wash

 

Paris, Tenn.—The Henry County High School Marching Patriots will be holding a car wash from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at Advance Auto Parts on Mineral Wells Ave. in Paris. They will be asking for a $5 donation.

 

 

There is also going to be a Hog Pullin' event hosted by the Christian Motorcycle Association at Commercial Bank back parking lot across the street on Saturday. So come get your cars washed and eat some delicious BBQ, and with Fish Fry week starting up, and not to mention all the pollen on the cars this time of year, there is definitely a great chance this car wash is going to be very successful, according to Spokesperson Sara Kollmann.

 




Thursday, April 20, 2017


$54,200 Raised Today For Pollack Family

Sheriff Monte Belew being interviewed at today's fundraiser by the Channel 2 and Channel 5 news crews from Nashville. (McFarlin photo). 

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—A whopping total of $54,200 was raised today for the Pollack Family at the benefit fundraiser sponsored by the Henry County Sheriff’s Office.

Sheriff Monte Belew said of the total, $40,000 will be placed in a trust fund for Lillie and Rose at $20,000 each, with the remaining $14,200 to be deposited into the account for them already set up at Security Bank and Trust in Paris.

Lillie and Rose, ages 13 and 8, lost their parents, two sisters and brother in a fire at their home earlier this month. They are now being cared for by their grandmother.

Belew said the sheriff’s office “would like to sincerely thank each and every citizen who either donated, brought baked goods, ordered sandwiches or participated in any way in the Pollack Family Fundraiser.”

Belew said the sheriff’s office anticipated there would be a large turnout but did not realize just how big the turnout would be for the benefit today at the fairgrounds.

“This would not have been possible had the community not have come together in unison to support this cause. While no monetary amount could even scratch the surface as the loss this family has endured, we hope that this fundraiser and complete and total outpouring of community support will shine some kind of light on the Pollack’s, especially Lillie and Rose,” he said.

“We would also like to thank all of the businesses and citizens for patiently waiting through long lines and waits. While we knew this would be a large turnout, there was no way possible for us to plan for the amount of support that was received,” he said. “This truly shows how caring and united the good folks of Henry County are. Today we have come together as one for a worthy cause”

“Oh, and if anyone had planned on grilling burgers tonight we hope you already have buns…because we bought em ALL!” 


Huge Crowd Turns Out For Pollack Benefit

Ray and Richar Summers are interviewed by Channel 2 in Nashville as they wait in a long line at the benefit. (McFarlin photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—A huge crowd is on hand today for the benefit for the Pollack family being held at the Henry County Fairgrounds. The event is sponsored by the Henry County Sheriff’s Office and chicken and steak sandwiches are being served to hundreds of people who were waiting in line.

Before the event even started, 2000 people had called in to pre-order meals, according to Captain Damon Lowe. “We have 3,040 sandwiches and we’re hoping that’s enough,” he said. Sheriff Monte Belew thanked everyone for their help with the benefit. “This is why Henry County is the Volunteer County of the Volunteer State.”

Volunteers helping the sheriff’s office include members of the Rescue Squad, Lakewood School 7th grade teachers and students, and many individual volunteers.

Five members of the Pollack family were killed in a fire at their home earlier this month, leaving two surviving sisters, Lillie, age 13, and Rose, age 8.

Several news outlets from Nashville and Jackson were on hand to cover the benefit.

The benefit will continue into the afternoon. 

Captain Adam Jenkins, center, organizes meal distribution with Investigators Gary Vandiver and Scott Wyrick, while Deputy Clyde Sulcer, Deputy David Powell and Jackie Belew work in the background. (McFarlin photo).



Suspect Still At Large After Search

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Martin, Tenn.—A suspect from Union City is still at large after a chase involving multiple law enforcement agencies and car crash Wednesday night in Weakley County.

Christopher J. Simpson, age 36, of Union City, is being sought by the Martin Police Department following a domestic call involving a firearm and on the new charge of felony evading arrest.

The Martin Police were called to 440 Hwy. 431 around 10:35 p.m. last night to assist the Weakley County Sheriff’s Office with the domestic call.

Simpson had left the scene and a short time later, Martin Patrolman Nicholas Combs made contact with him on Skyhawk Parkway inside the city limits.

According to Captain Phillip Fuqua, Ptl. Combs stopped the vehicle just north of Old Fulton Rd. 

Fuqua said, “During that traffic stop, the offender was ordered to show his hands and the offender sped away in his vehicle.  A short time later, the offender crashed his vehicle into a tree at the intersection of Brandon Road and Haygood Road outside of the city limits.”

Simpson then fled the crash scene on foot in to a nearby woods. 

The Weakley County Sheriff’s Department and members of the Tennessee Highway Patrol responded and began a search for Simpson, which was unsuccessful.


A-P Association Buys Property For Community Project

USDA Officials Mary Hickman and Joel Howard present info at last night's meeting. (McFarlin photo).


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The Atkins-Porter Neighborhood Association have purchased dilapidated property at 311 Jackson St. in Paris and have begun planning its use as a community park or garden.

The two-story property originally was a residence, but in recent years additions have been constructed to the property, which has been divided into small apartments. Over time, it has become an eyesore.

Concerned members of the A-P Association donated money so that the Association could purchase the property. The city plans to demolish it under its Preserve Paris program.

USDA Officials Mary Hickman and Joel Howard were on hand at the A-P meeting Thursday night to extend a helping hand to the group.

A-P President Ed Roberts said, “Now that we own it, we have to figure out what we want to do with it. And we want it to be a community project.”

Howard said funding would be available from the USDA for a community project for the site, “But I would advise you not to be in a hurry to decide what to do with it. You need to really think about it and plan it.”

Ideas such as transforming it into a community garden or park and to install a Little Library on the property were suggested.

A committee was formed to begin planning use for the property.

Hickman and Howard also told the group of other programs available through USDA to fix up other dilapidated properties in the neighborhood. Hickman said USDA is currently partnering with the city of Paris and has made numerous presentations for the public on the programs. “It’s a win-win for everybody. You put the property back on the tax rolls, you give the owner equity and you make the community look better,” Hickman said.

In other business:

A-P Association Treasurer Annette Douglas informed members of a Kroger program under which you can use your Kroger card to provide rebates to the A-P Association.

Member Rachel Terrell said the second annual Neighborhood Yard Sale will be held May 13. Anyone wanting to participate can pay $5 to the Association by the deadline of May 6. The Association will take care of registering the yard sales with the city. Maps will be distributed to the public showing where all the sales will be.

 

Civil War Days This Weekend At Discovery Park

Union City, Tenn.—One of Discovery Park of America’s most popular events is this weekend—Civil War Days. Free with park admission, the event is held Friday-Sunday and includes reenactors, weapon demonstrations, cannon firings and a dinner theater. The encampment will be set up all three days. Special events will be held all three days.

On Saturday night, the “Civil War Letters” dinner theater will be presented on the Great Lawn with the cast from The Badgett Playhouse in Grand Rivers, Ky. Enjoy a chuck wagon steak with all the fixings and then travel back in time to 1861-1865.

Tickets are still on sale for $35. Call Discovery Park at 731 885 5455 for more information.

 

Construction Of Splash Pad Underway

McKenzie, Tenn.—Construction has begun on the new splash pad in downtown McKenzie. The attraction is located on city-owned land near the railroad depot. Plans are that it will be completed by June, but state inspectors must give it the go-ahead before it can be officially opened.

The splash pad is funded by a state grant with a 50 percent match. Overall, the grant is valued at $500,000. Local cost is expected at some $60,000 in cash, plus the appraised value of $105,000 for the real estate, plus in-kind labor.

The splash pad is one part of a master plan for the space, which also will include a skate park, disc golf, farmers market and outdoor theater.




Wednesday, April 19, 2017


McKenzie Flooding Creates Hazards

A car is submerged in floodwaters this afternoon. (Tammy Travathan photo).


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

McKenzie, Tenn.—At least two cars were swept up in floodwaters in McKenzie during this afternoon’s severe storm. No injuries were reported.

As usual, two areas were hardest hit by flooding—the low area on Main Street by Block City Pizza and Highland Ave. by the train overpass.

One car was almost totally submerged near Block City. The car was swept up in the floodwaters and a dispatcher at the McKenzie Police Department told WENK/WTPR that officers helped the people in the car get out safely.

In another incident, a car was pushed along by flooding in the parking lot at O’Reilly’s on Highland Ave. and ended up in the ditch. The dispatcher said that motorist was able to get out of his car on his own.

McKenzie Police had a few streets blocked off during the storm due to the high water, she said.

By 3:30 p.m., most of the flooding had dissipated except for the area in front of Block City Pizza.

 


Main Street UC To Host “Brainstorming Breakfast”

Union City, Tenn.—Main Street Union City will host a “Brainstorming Breakfast” on Friday morning at Commercial Bank at 127 South First St.

Main Street Director Kristi Townes invited everyone to join in for updates and to share new ideas on the revitalization and rediscovery of downtown Union City. All businesses, building owners and interested parties are invited.

For more information, call Townes at 731 885 8330.

 

Soldier Arrested For Murray Shooting

Murray, Ky.—An active U.S. soldier wanted for a shooting in Murray is now in jail in Missouri, awaiting extradition to Kentucky.

A warrant was issued for Monyea Williams, age 20, on a charge of first degree felony assault following the shooting at Welch Court in Murray in February. The warrant was issued by District Court Judge Hutchens after Murray Police investigators followed a network of information that identified Williams as the individual who shot Kendarion Jennings in the parking lot of 51 Welch Court.

Williams is stationed at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri and was visiting Murray when the shooting occurred.

Murray Police were assisted in the investigation by the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command at Fort Leonard Wood. U.S. Marshals were notified of the arrest warrant and on Tuesday, they apprehended Williams at the base.

He is currently detained in the Pulaski Co. Jail in Missouri.



Rescue Squad Certification

Paris, Tenn.-The Henry County Rescue Squad recently conducted certification and recertification classes and new members learned how to enter a car by cutting through the roof. Squad Official Carol Tedford said they learned where to make the cuts to remove the roof and how to break the glass so the roof could be removed. (Carol Tedford photo).

 

UC Council Develops Park Plan

Union City, Tenn.—Union City City Council Tuesday night adopted a five-year master plan for Graham Park that will involve approximately $4.3M worth of improvements.

Council also approved a TIF designation for Graham Acres, which is a tax incentive program for the property, which will see the development of two new hotels next to Discovery Park.

At a busy session, Council also voted to donate $100,000 to the Carl Perkins Center in Martin, which is constructing a new building. Currently, 70 percent of those who are served by the center are from Obion County.

In other business:

Council authorized $350,000 for renovation of the recently-acquired Simmons Bank Building across from City Hall. The site will be used for the Police Department.

Council leased 380 acres in the industrial park to Chad Everett Farms for $160 per acre. The land is farmed each year until it is needed for industry.

Council also approved a job description for a full-time IT Administrator.

 

School Project Worker Injured In Dresden

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Dresden, Tenn.—A worker at the Adult Learning Center in Dresden was injured Tuesday morning and is now in stable condition at The Med in Memphis.

The Dyer man was working on the improvement project at the Learning Center when he lost his balance on a scaffold, grabbed a hot wire and fell to the floor, hitting his head.

The worker was a member of the crew working for the Weakley County Schools on the project, which is managed by Henson Construction of Jackson.

Owner Cary Henson told WENK/WTPR that the worker is in stable condition at The Med, suffering from fractured ribs and a head injury. “We’re optimistic. Everything looks as good as it can at this time,” Henson said.

The worker, whose name has not been released by the school district, was first transported to Tennova Volunteer Hospital and then airlifted to The Med.


That’s A Lot Of Marijuana

Kuttawa, Ky.—Now, that’s a lot of marijuana. Kentucky State Police Troopers located 75 pounds of both marijuana edibles and high grade marijuana during a traffic stop near Kuttawa in Lyon County, Ky.

On Tuesday, KSP Troopers T. J. Williams and Lewie Dodd, assigned with the Post 1 Interdiction Team, stopped a vehicle near the 47 mile marker in Lyon Co. for a traffic violation. During the traffic stop, Troopers observed indicators of criminal behavior and subsequently searched the vehicle.  During the search, Troopers located marijuana edibles as well as over 75 pounds of high grade marijuana.

Michael D. Wilson, age 37, of Edmonds, Washington was arrested and charged with Trafficking Marijuana Greater than Five Pounds (Felony). Wilson was lodged in the Caldwell County Jail.

The investigation is continuing by Master Trooper Lewie Dodd. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Kentucky State Police Post 1 at 270-856-3721 or anonymously at 1-800-222-5555.   

 

Witter To Perform Manilow At UC

Union City, Tenn.--From a very early age, Jim Witter’s parents knew he was destined for the stage. “We would get phone calls from neighbors saying how much they were enjoying Jim’s concert. Turns out he was on our front porch belting out tunes for anyone who would listen,” says his mom about the then 4-year old.

Witter is now performing on bigger stages, including the one at the Union City Civic Auditorium. He is scheduled as the closing concert for the 2016-17 Obion County Community Concert Association of Union City/Obion County concert series. The performance, sponsored by Magnolia Place Assisted Living, will begin at 7:30 p.m. April 22.

Individual tickets are currently available at Lanzer Printing and Office Supply in downtown Union City for $20. He will be presenting “I Write the Songs: The Music of Barry Manilow.”

Witter has been performing since he was a child, and professionally for the last 30 years. In 2001, Witter produced and starred in “The Piano Men,” a musical journey through the ’70s featuring the hits of Billy Joel and Elton John. The show, which he brought to Union City in 2010, was a nod to his musical heroes growing up, and was an immediate success.

Witter still lives in Southern Ontario with his wife of 25 years, Rebecca, and their four children, James, Roslyn, Ryan and Luke.

For more information about Community Concert Association of Union City/Obion County, visit online at www.communityconcertuc.com.

 

Car Crashes Into Union City McDonald’s

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Union City, Tenn.—A passenger was injured when a car slammed into the side of the Union City McDonald’s Tuesday.

Police and EMS units were called to McDonald’s at 1108 Marshall Ave. to respond to the accident.

Driver Judy Glenn of Union City told officers she had an issue with her brakes, crossed the curb and struck the side of the building, breaking the plate glass window and causing significant damage to the bricks on the west side of the building.

Passenger Margie Smith was transported to Baptist Memorial Hospital by her son with knee pain.

 

Trip To Space Center Planned

Paris, Tenn.—The Henry County Office on Aging will be on the road again and this time on a once-in-a-lifetime experience to the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, Ala.

The Office on Aging is partnering with West Tennessee Motor Coach for the trip, set for Thursday, May 18. The group will leave around 6:30 a.m. from the Central Services Building. It takes about three hours to get there, so they will stop along the way for breakfast. The group should be back in Paris between 4 and 10 p.m.

Forty people are needed for the trip. Cost is $63 per person, which includes transportation and admission cost. This does not include meals or extras. The U.S. Space & Rocket Center does have places you can eat at the center.

The trip is open to everyone in the community. For more info, call Reggie Caldwell at 642 2919, Barbara Pearson 644 3193 or West Tennessee Motor Coach 644 0860.





Tuesday, April 18, 2017


Homicide Investigation Underway In Martin

Martin, Tenn.—The Martin Police Department is releasing very little so far on a homicide investigation that got underway this morning.

Martin Police responded to 70 Lester Lane around 9:08 a.m. today in regards to an unresponsive male at the scene. EMS personnel pronounced the male subject deceased and investigators from the Martin Police responded.

Martin Police Captain Phillip Fuqua said the deceased is identified as Charles C. Graves, age 51, of that address, and that the case is being investigated as a homicide.

Fuqua said further that more details will be released when it is appropriate and the information is available.



Short-Line RR To Open In Union City


Old Gulf, Mobile & Ohio railcar in Union City.


Union City, Tenn.—Union City Native Brent Lee has railroading in his blood and is returning to his hometown to run his own short line railroad. 


The Union City Terminal Railroad is an eight-mile stub of the former Gulf, Mobile and Ohio Railroad line between Union City and Rives, Tenn., where it connects to the Canadian National main line. Lee told Trains Magazine that he expects to debut the new short line in May.


Lee spent 24 years with the Burlington Northern and BNSF Railway in track maintenance and train service. He told Trains Magazine, “I was born and raised in Union City. I always had the idea if I ever wanted to short line something, it would be that line.”


Lee currently is Operations Vice President for the Indiana Business Railroad of Evansville, Ind. The company owns six miles of track in Indiana, but the Union City Terminal will be the company’s first short-line operation.


“Free Dump Day” Is Saturday



Paris, Tenn.--The annual “Free Dump Day” at the Paris Henry County Landfill is scheduled for Saturday, April 22. Hours for this day are 7 a.m. until 3 p.m. (Gates will be locked at 3 p.m.).


The landfill accepts only 3/4 waste. If you have a mixed load with construction and trash, there will be a fee. Additionally, tires and household furnishings are not free as these are deposited in areas other than the Landfill.


Also located on the landfill property is a transfer station used to transfer Class I refuse to a landfill operation in Mayfield.


Anything not listed in the Class ¾ Landfill would be dumped in the Transfer Station and not subject to the free day. ONLY materials free on this day will be concrete, shingles, dry wall, brush, and wood. If anything is in bags it will have to go into the building and there will be a fee.


If you have questions you may call the Landfill at 731-644-1737. The Paris-Henry County Landfill is located Jones Bend Road.



UC Penney’s Closing Delayed



Union City, Tenn.—Customers of the J.C. Penney Store in Union City will have a little more time to shop there. Six weeks more, to be exact.


The Union City store is on the list of 138 stores that J.C. Penney earlier announced it would be closing due to a lack of sales.


But since its announcement, sales have increased at those stores.


J.C. Penney spokeswoman Daphne Avila said, “Ever since the company announced its store closure list, those stores have seen better-than-expected sales and traffic. This is not an uncommon response when you announce a store closure. Local shoppers will come out for a variety of reasons—some out of nostalgia and some who are just looking for a great deal.”

As a result, the retailer has postponed the liquidation sales and closure dates for the 138 stores it plans to close, CNBC is reporting.


The liquidation will now begin May 22 instead of April 17 and the new closure date is July 31, six weeks later than originally planned.


 



Tickets On Sale For “April In Paris”

Walt and Sally Peterson in their Spring finest. (DPA photo).


Paris, Tenn.--“April in Paris” is more than a song or a season. It’s a dynamic fashion event and luncheon in Paris, Tennessee. The event takes place at the Paris Winery Tuscany Room on Friday, April 21st from 11 am to 1 pm and benefits the Downtown Paris Association (DPA).


The show and luncheon feature local models in popular spring fashions from downtown women’s clothing boutiques including Boutique Mari Mac, Maggies, and Southern Roots Boutique as well as men’s fashions from The Toggery. While fashion is the drawing card, this is also a selling event, according to DPA Director Kathy Ray. Merle Norman Cosmetics and Doterra Essential Oils with Christie Nichols will be have merchandise for sale and available to answer questions about their products.  Throughout the luncheon we have many great door prizes provided by Cadillac Jack Design, The Iron Place, Jack Jones Flowers & Gifts, Jack’s Java, Jaspe` Salon, Kin Folk Boutique, Lura Lee’s of Paris, My Favorite Things, Paris Winery, and Queens of Paris.


Guests will be served a Salad Extravaganza of chicken salad, pasta salad, and Caesar salad with butter croissants and a delightful strawberry short cake dessert, tea and water. The Paris Winery will offer wine selections at an additional cost.


Tickets to “April in Paris” Spring Fashion Luncheon are $20 per person and may be purchased from fashion sponsors and the Downtown Paris Association, 203 N. Fentress Street or by emailing DowntownParis@Outlook.com or calling 731-653-PARIS (7274).




Refuge To Host Event On Insect Pollinators


Springville, Tenn.-In honor of Earth Day, the Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge is hosting an event on Saturday to celebrate an important worker in nature, our insect pollinators. The event will be held from 10 a.m. -3 pm at the refuge visitor center located at 1371 Wildlife Drive in Springville, TN. The day will feature speakers and activities that focus on Monarchs and other butterflies, bees and other insect pollinators.


Partner organizations assisting with the day include the Friends of Tennessee NWR, Quail Forever, Camden Garden Club, Kentucky Lake Beekeepers Association, University of Tennessee Ag Extension, and Quail Forever.


A series of speakers will present programs that will include:

• 10:00 am - Danny Kimberlin – Monarch Conservation

- Friends of Tennessee NWR

• 11:30 am - Bernie Leslie/James Hinton – Bees and Beekeeping 

- Kentucky Lake Beekeeper’s Association

• 1:00 pm - Carol Reese – Native Gardening for Pollinators

- Ornamental Horticulture Specialist

• 2:00 pm - Glenn Lee – Insect Pollinators

- Entomologist


The day will also include activities for the family on the back patio. A demonstration bee hive will be on hand provided by the Kentucky Lake Beekeepers Association. Quail Forever will be making seed balls as well as letting children plant a demonstration pollinator patch. A children’s corner will be on hand with kid’s activities led by Laura French that will include time with butterfly nets. Entomologist Glenn Lee will have many insect/butterfly items to show tell and families will be encouraged to plant seed cups with the Friends of Tennessee NWR. The Camden Garden Club will have milkweed and other native plant sets for sale as well as information about growing these important plants to help our Monarch butterflies.

The Refuge holds monthly free programs held at the new refuge visitor center and sponsored by the Friends of Tennessee NWR that attempts to connect people with nature. For more information about upcoming Refuge programs or about the refuge in general, please call the Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge Headquarters at 731-642-2091 or see our website at www.fws.gov/refuge/Tennessee or on facebook at www.facebook.com/tennesseenwr.


Cruisers For Christ BBQ Lunch Set


Paris, Tenn.—The West Tennessee Cruisers for Christ will hold its 10th annual Hog Pullin’ BBQ from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, April 22, in the back parking lot at Commercial Bank and Trust on Mineral Wells Ave. in Paris.


All Proceeds to the Christian Motorcyclist Association’s Run for the Son. 

Plate lunches of BBQ, beans, slaw and drink for $7. Sandwich only is $5.


Pre-orders to Sara Kollman at 363 3445.






Monday, April 17, 2017


Courthouse Dome To Be Repaired

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—Storm damage repairs at the Henry County Courthouse dome will begin Wednesday. At Monday evening’s Henry County Commission meeting, Mayor Brent Greer said parts of the dome flew off during the major wind storm that blew through the county earlier this month.

Monday’s meeting was another record-breaking, lasting only 12 minutes.

Sheriff Monte Belew invited everyone to the benefit for the Pollack family that the sheriff’s office will be holding Thursday at the Henry County Fairgrounds. Ribeye and chicken sandwich plates will be served for $8 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Five members of the Pollack family were killed in a fire, leaving two small girls, Lily and Rose, who are now living with their grandmother.

Greer announced The National Day of Prayer service will be held at noon May 4 at the courthouse.

In other business, the commission authorized the county to apply for a Litter and Trash Collecting grant from TDOT and appointed members to the Board of Equalization: Ralph Anderson, James Hamilton, Brenda Hosford and Albert Wade Jr.

 

Grill To Be Auctioned For Pollack Family

From left, Captain Adam Jenkins, Chief Deputy Damon Lowe, Sheriff Monte Belew with donated grill. (HCSO photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—A new Primo grill has been donated and will be auctioned off for the Pollack Family benefit set for Thursday. The Henry County Sheriff’s Office will be holding the benefit from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Henry County Fairgrounds.

Sheriff Monte Belew said the grill was donated by “a caring individual”. The grill will be auctioned off and all proceeds will go to the Pollack children, as will all proceeds from Thursday’s benefit.

The value of the grill is $1,000. To bid on the grill, call 336-4699. The sheriff’s office Facebook page will regularly post the high bids. The grill will be on display at the fairgrounds during the benefit and you can also bid that day.

The winning bidder will be announced at 1 p.m. Thursday.

Ribeye and chicken sandwiches and plates will be served for $8.

Five members of the Pollack family were killed in a fire at their house in Buchanan, leaving two surviving children Lily and Rose.


Greer Named HCHS Basketball Coach

Paris, Tenn.--Henry County High School has named long-time West Tennessee coach Mike Greer as the next varsity basketball coach for the Henry County Patriots. Greer has 30 years of experience coaching at the junior high, high school, and collegiate levels. During his time in Henry County during the 2012-13 season, Greer led the Patriots to a semifinal appearance at the regional tournament. Greer played basketball and graduated from Benton County High School, where he has been inducted into the Benton County Athletics Hall of Fame, and Union University.

During his career, Greer has been named Coach of the Year 12 times, has 22 former players who have advanced to play at the collegiate level, and has 14 former players and assistant coaches who are now head coaches.

Joining Greer as an assistant coach will be Roddy Adkisson. A graduate of McKenzie High School where he played basketball and of Bethel University, Adkisson has been involved with the Inman Bulldogs basketball program for three years and was the Grove Patriots freshman coach prior. In his two years as head coach at Inman, Adkisson holds a 34-9 record, advancing to area five tournament play both years and to the second round of sectionals in the 2016-17 season.

“We are looking forward to Coach Greer being our head coach at Henry County High School and moving with his family to our community.” said Athletic Director Mike Poteete of the announcement. “I hope that everyone gives him full support as he works with the basketball team at HCHS. I feel Coach Adkisson will be a tremendous asset to our basketball program with his knowledge of the game and his relationship with many of the players he has coached.”

Of the new coaching staff, HCHS principal Michele Webb said, “We are excited for Coach Greer and Coach Adkisson to join us at Henry County High School and know they will do a great job working with our young men. We look forward to them providing a strong program of basketball for our boys while developing men of character. We look forward to filling Gamlin Gym next season to cheer on our Patriot basketball teams."


WBFF Headquarters Open Every Day

Paris, Tenn.—The World’s Biggest Fish Fry is upon us and the Headquarters is open Monday through Friday from 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and will be open this Saturday from 10:30-2 p.m. The phone number of the Headquarters is 644-1143.

The Headquarters is located on East Wood St., in front of the Paris Inns and Suites.

 


Paris Landing Easter Egg Hunt Draws Crowd



Buchanan, Tenn.—A large crowd with Easter Eggs on their minds were at Paris Landing State Park Saturday afternoon for the annual Easter Egg Hunt sponsored by the Paris Landing Volunteer Fire Department and the state park. Fire Chief Reggie Coles said, “A total of 4,000 eggs were found by the children in approximately two minutes.” Coles gave a special thanks to Air Evac for being on hand for the event to show the children and their families one of their helicopters and answer questions about Air Evac. (Reggie Coles photos).


Fish Fry Kicks Off Saturday With Races, Demo Derby

Bed Race Is New Event



By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director


Paris, Tenn.—The World’s Biggest Fish Fry will kick off this Saturday with three events that are sure to get everyone’s energy flowing. The 5K Hushpuppy Dash gets underway at 8 a.m., followed by a new event for the Fish Fry—bed races—which will be held in downtown Paris at noon. The day will be capped off with the always popular Demolition Derby, set for 7 p.m.


The bed race event is new to everyone at the Paris-Henry County Jaycees, which sponsors the Fish Fry and General Manager Josh “Smokey” Taylor said they’ll be starting out small this year.


Registration will begin at 11 a.m., followed by judging at 11:30 p.m., with the race itself at noon. Everyone will meet at the First United Methodist Church parking lot at the corner of Blythe and Poplar Streets, he said.


Judging will be in the Best Decorated category this year, Taylor said. “With this being new to all of us this year, we’ll just start out with Best Decorated and add more categories other years,” he said.


The race will be one-eighth of a mile and will follow a route from Blythe to Brewer Streets and back. Entry fee is $75. You can pre-register for $50 at either the Fish Fry headquarters on East Wood Street (in front of Paris Inns and Suites) or online at the World’s Biggest Fish Fry website.


The 5K Hushpuppy Dash will be held again at the Henry County High School. Registration begins at 7 a.m., followed by the race at 8 a.m. 

Entry fee is $20.


The Demolition Derby will be held at 7 p.m. at the Henry County Fairgrounds. To enter, the fee is $40. Admission is $10, with children aged 6-10 for $5 and children under five for free.

The annual World’s Biggest Fish Fry runs from April 22-April 29.



College Big Bass Bash To Return To Paris Landing



Buchanan, Tenn. - The Cabela's Collegiate Bass Fishing Series has announced after a record turn out in 2017, the tournament will be returning to Kentucky Lake and Paris, in March 2018. 

  

"Henry County is excited to again host the Cabela's Collegiate Big Bass Bash on Kentucky Lake.  We look forward to this event every year and enjoy watching these young adults representing colleges from all over the nation enjoying the outdoors," said David Hamilton, CEO of the Henry County Alliance. 

 

This event has turned into one of the biggest events in all of collegiate bass fishing. In 2017, with well over 500 anglers from 84 schools from across the nation competing, this was the largest event in the history of the Cabela's Collegiate Bass Fishing Series. Over $30,000 in prizes were awarded to the anglers in 2017, and 2018 is expected to be bigger and better on all fronts.



Break-Ins Reported At UC Businesses


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director


Union City, Tenn.—Two Union City businesses experienced a burglary and a break-in late last week.


Several items of clothing and shoes were stolen from 5 Seasons at 627 E. Reelfoot Ave., with the burglars gaining entry from the roof. According to the police report, the suspects got in by pushing a shipping roller in the back of the building and climbing to the roof, where a brick was used to break the glass out of the top story window.


Several items of clothing and a Nike shoe were found in the parking lot of Fred’s.


Another break-in was reported at Soleil Garden Center at 2317 Nailing Dr. Surveillance video shows two white men entering the business by jumping over the front gate around 5 a.m. Friday. One man was heavy set with a Yeti shirt and a white and black ball camp. The other man was medium build with a long-sleeve Tennessee shirt, white ball cap with a dark spot on it.


Nothing appears to have been taken from the business but the video shows them walking around inside the garden center.



 

A-P Association To Discuss Community Garden


Paris, Tenn.—The Historic Atkins-Porter Association will meet Wednesday evening at the Paris Bethel building on Lake Street. Snacks and visiting with neighbors begins at 6:30 p.m., followed by the meeting at 7 p.m.


The program will include a presentation on neighborhood landscaping by River Byrd, former owner of Wildwood Garden Center, followed by a presentation by Mary Hickman and Joel Howard of the USDA on possible plans for a community garden at 311 Jackson St.

A door prize will be awarded at the meeting. The public is invited to attend.

   

Office On Aging Begins Zumba Classes


Paris, Tenn.--The Henry County Office on Aging/Conger’s Senior Citizens Center located on 55 Jones Bend Rd Ext, Paris, Tennessee (Central Community Building) is offering Zumba Classes every Monday Morning from 9-9:45 p.m. The teacher is Janice Thomasson, Licensed Zumba Gold Instructor. Wear comfortable clothes, shoes and bring water.

What is Zumba Gold: Zumba Gold is a low-impact class for older adults. It focuses on balance and moving at your own pace. For those recovering from injuries, have physical limitations, or who want a fun, exciting, Latin-inspirited, 45-minutes workout.

 





Sunday, April 16, 2017



              Happy Easter From WENK/WTPR 


                       



Saturday, April 15, 2017


Dino Egg Hunting At Discovery Park

Union City, Tenn.-Hundreds of visitors from several states were on hand for today’s Dino Egg Hunt at Discovery Park of America. Over 10,000 Easter Eggs were scattered across the Great Lawn for children under 12 to hunt. The crowd also enjoyed the other activities, including bounce houses, face painting, and balloon animals. The event was sponsored by Crosswind Church. (Photo by Brent Hinson).


THP Releases Names Of Persons Killed In Crash

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Holladay, Tenn.-The Tennessee Highway Patrol has released the names of the persons killed in Thursday night’s chain-reaction crash on Hwy. 140 near Holladay. All those killed were members of the same family, all from Grenada, Miss.

Persons killed in the accident are: Driver Gregory Sledge, age 38; and two passengers, Tommy Sledge, age 58; and Joretha Sledge, age 61.

According to the new information released this morning by the THP, a total of 10 vehicles were involved in the accident. Earlier reports from the THP indicated a total of 12 vehicles were involved.

Three persons were injured in the accident, although the report does not indicate the extent of their injuries: Passenger Michelle Miller of Little Rock; Driver Veronica Langley, age 22, of Sparta; and Driver Kimberley Bennett, age 51, of Germantown.

Other drivers involved in the crash were from Red Boiling Springs, Manchester, Arkadelphia, Joppa, Md., Culleokat, Tenn.; and Harbor Beach, Mich.

According to the report, the chain reaction happened when a semi driven by Eric Bufford of Hohenwald caught on fire at the 126 Mile Marker on Hwy. 140. Vehicles directly behind him stopped and others began slowing down and more vehicles began crashing into each other along the highway.

Trooper Mikeal Little investigated.

 


Friday, April 14, 2017


Two Found Guilty Of Illegal Turkey Hunting In HC

 

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

 

Paris, Tenn.—Two hunters were found guilty of illegal turkey hunting in Henry County and were sentenced in Henry County General Sessions Court following a plea agreement.

 

On Sunday, April 2 around 10 a.m. TWRA Officers Greg Barker and Steve Brewer responded to a call regarding illegal turkey hunting on Freeland Road in the Buchanan area, according to Barker.

 

Barker said upon the TWRA Officer’s arrival, one wild turkey was discovered that had been shot and killed.  “Upon further investigation two individuals were questioned and charged with shooting and killing two wild turkeys with a .22 caliber rifle from their motor vehicle, a 2003 Ford Focus, while traveling Freeland Road,” Barker said.

 

The two further admitted to shooting at another turkey just a short distance down the road but not hitting that turkey, according to Barker.

 

The two: Austin B. Elkins, age 22, from Buchanan, and Tracy L. Pritchett, age 21, from Dexter, Ky., were both charged with five wildlife violations each.  

 

They appeared in General Sessions Court before Judge Vicki Snyder on Thursday, April 13, and entered guilty pleas on all charges in a plea agreement with the State of TN and Assistant District Attorney General Adam Jowers.  

 

According to Barker, the agreement is as follows:

 

  Shooting from a public road, $50 fine + $260.50 court costs.

  Hunting from a motor vehicle, $50 fine + $260.50 court costs.

  Violation of manner and means of hunting, $50 fine + $260.50 court costs

  Illegal taking and possessing wild turkeys, $50 fine.  No court costs assessed on this charge.

  Hunting without a license, charge dismissed 

  Hunting privileges suspended for 2 years

  Austin B. Elkins had to pay an additional $1,000 in restitution for the turkeys. 

  Both individuals were placed on unsupervised probation for 6 months.

 

Counterfeit Money Being Circulated

Paris, Tenn.-Paris Police Investigator Jeramye Whitaker is warning the public of counterfeit money being circulated in the Henry County area. “Businesses and the general public need to be aware of this,” he said. A close look at the counterfeit money will find that it says ‘For Motion Picture Use Only’ on it. “Otherwise, the money looks real,” Whitaker said. “Please take a second look at your money as you receive it. The most common bills we are seeing at this time are $50 and $100.”

Adora, Sophie Learning The Ropes

Paris, Tenn.—Henry County Sheriff’s Deputy Wayne Fuqua and his new K9 bloodhound Adora were training yesterday with Jason Corbitt and his bloodhound Sophie at the Eiffel Tower Park in Paris. Corbitt and Sophie work for Four Rivers K9 Team, a search, rescue and recovery operation. Both Adora and Sophie are pure bloodhounds: Adora is seven months old and Sophie is three years old and they’re learning their paces. As most everyone knows, Fuqua is also the handler for the famous Cisco, who is renowned for his tracking abilities. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

 

New Water Slide Being Installed At Paris Pool

Paris, Tenn.—Work has begun constructing the new slide at the City of Paris swimming pool and Parks and Recreation Director Tony Lawrence said the slide will be ready for the pool’s opening on Memorial Day. The new slide will feature three large tubes of different colors. Benny Lugo and Cavin Deavers of Perfect Settings in Columbia, Tenn., have been doing the installation. Lawrence said the tubes will arrive next week. Pool prices will be increasing this summer, from $3-$6 for the daily fee. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

Obion Co. Central Student Attends Summit

State Representative Bill Sanderson visits with OCC High School student Garrett Syndor and Gibson EMC Official Debbie Weatherford.

 

Nashville, Tenn. –Obion County Central High School student Garrett Syndor were in Nashville for the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association’s annual Youth Leadership Summit. The juniors were chosen and sponsored by Gibson Electric Membership Corporation. Peabody High School Student Chloe Cates also attended.

In addition to a hands-on look at state government, delegates to the event learned team-building and problem-solving skills and developed a better understanding of their local electric cooperatives. They also met State Legislators and watched debates at the House and Senate.

Delegates to the Youth Leadership Summit are encouraged to be leaders and use their talents to improve rural Tennessee. “These students will soon be our community leaders — and electric cooperative member-owners,” said Gibson EMC President and CEO Dan Rodamaker. “We want them to share our passion for rural America, so it is an honor for Gibson EMC to help prepare them for the opportunities that are ahead. The future of our rural communities depends on a new generation of strong leaders like these.”

Gibson EMC is a private, local not for profit, member-owned and member-controlled electric cooperative.  It serves almost 39,000 members in parts of 12 counties in west Tennessee (Crockett, Dyer, Gibson, Haywood, Lake, Lauderdale, Obion and Madison) and four west Kentucky counties (Carlisle, Fulton, Graves and Hickman). 





Thursday, April 13, 2017


Updated Breaking News:

Three Confirmed Dead In Benton County Crash

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Holladay, Tenn.-At least three people are confirmed dead following a multi-car accident near Holladay in Benton County tonight.

Lt. Brad Wilbanks of the Tennessee Highway Patrol told WENK/WTPR around 8 p.m. tonight that at least two people have died in the crash. The number of fatalities was later increased to three. A total of 12 vehicles are involved.

The eastbound lanes of I-40 between mile markers 126 and 128 are closed while crews work the scene of the crash.

Wilbanks said an official report on the crash may not be ready until the morning. Multiple law enforcement agencies have responded to the scene.


Norton: Softball Field Needs To Be Priority

Dr. Norton, center, provides reports for the board. (McFarlin photo).


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—Improvements to the Henry County Schools’ softball field “needs to be a priority” for the district, County Director of Schools Dr. Brian Norton told the board of education at its Thursday evening meeting. Also during the meeting, the board approved a fishing program for the high school and heard about plans to observe the 100th anniversary of ag education, of which Grove High School played an integral part in the U.S.

“We have concerns with the softball field and have tried several things this year” to solve a continuing problem with a wet field. “We’re now working with a pump and mats and the short-term solution is working for this season,” he said “but we need to make a long-term commitment. We’re going to need to make a commitment to level out the field and it’s going to be a financial commitment.”

A lot of dirt will have to be brought in to fix the problem, Norton said. “I believe this has to be a priority for capital projects for next year. We have to be concerned with the safety of our girls.”

At the board’s May meeting, a celebration of the 100-year anniversary of the Future Farmers of America and Ag Education will be held. Norton noted that agriculture education began in Henry County with Grove High School.

An observance will be held on the north lawn at Grove Tower at 4 p.m. before the May board meeting, he said.

Norton said 23 students and parents attended the organizational meeting for a high school fishing team and 14 expressed real interest in preparing for entry in a tournament in late April. “They understood what needed to be done”, he said, “and I’d hate to stand in their way.” Norton noted that “a lot of people in our community have wanted this for a long time.”

In other business:

The board approved a request from Teacher Linda Miller on behalf of the speech team to participate in the week-long national tournament in Birmingham in May. She said Students Natalie Clark and Charlie Raymer qualified for the tournament as both were first place in the state in their respective categories. Miller said over 3000 students will participate in the tournament, which she said is the largest academic competition in the nation.

She said last year Clark was the first freshman in history to qualify for the tournament. “We’re really proud of both of Natalie and Charlie”, she said.

Work will begin soon on the planned new transportation and maintenance buildings at Barton Field. County Schools Maintenance Supervisor John Akers provided a progress report for the board.

He said materials for the transportation building are on order and by late next week, the design should be finalized on the maintenance building.


KFC To Have Whole New Look

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The KFC Restaurant in Paris will have a whole new look in the coming months.

The Paris Municipal Regional Planning Commission Thursday night approved a plan from KFC for major renovation of the building, located on Mineral Wells Ave. The new look will include interior and exterior renovations, as well as new signage.

City Economic Planning Director Jennifer Morris said these type of improvements are not usually submitted for review by the commission, but in this case, KFC also is proposing to add a 15’8” and 8’ cooler at the rear of the building.

Morris said the addition will comply with setbacks and does not alter any of the existing parking lot.

Planners also approved a site plan for Wofford’s Landscaping for its ongoing expansion on E. Wood St. Morris explained that in development, some of the structures were not built according to the original plan submitted.

“However, the location of the new improvements do comply with the Paris Zoning Ordinance,” she said. “We are presenting a site plan for approval in an attempt to have an as-built plan on file.” Morris said in the case something was not in compliance, a certificate of occupancy would not be issued and the work would be subject to measures to bring the improvements into compliance.”

Wofford’s has added a greenhouse that was not in the original plan. “But overall, there’s no problem with it,” Morris said.

In other business:

--Planners continued discussion of proposed tightening of regulations for home businesses. The main aim of the regulations will be to not allow retail businesses that would draw parking problems. Planners will review proposed verbiage from staff and discuss further next month.

 


Officials Work For “Burger Bash”

Chilcutt, Craig and French behind the counter. (Carl Perkins Center photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—Tuesday’s Burger Bash at McDonald’s in Paris was a definite success, with city and county officials working as employees to raise money for the Carl Perkins Center for the Prevention of Child Abuse.

Director Carly Wheat said, “Burger Bash was a blast. Taking orders is easier said than done.” Wheat thanked McDonald’s for its support and donation of 20 percent of proceeds during the event to the Carl Perkins’ Center. The amount raised is still being calculated, Wheat said.

Volunteers during the event were Sheriff Monte Belew, County Road Supervisor Richie Chilcutt, County Clerk Donna Craig, Chamber Director Mark Johnson, Downtown Paris Association Director Kathy Ray, 911 Director Mark Archer, County Circuit Court Clerk and County Trustee Randi French.


Record-Breaking Turkey Harvested In HC

Henry County, Tenn.--It has been a record-breaking kind of era recently as fish after fish records have fallen, a world class deer taken, and now potentially a new state record wild turkey.

Cord Maddox, 23, of Huntingdon, bagged a gobbler in Henry County using a scoring method developed by the National Wild Turkey Federation, could beat the previous record set in 2016 in East Tennessee.

Cord's pending score of 89.562 has edged the previous mark of 89.50 if the NWTF certifies measurements taken by TWRA Henry County Wildlife Officer Greg Barker. You can see it is VERY tight score to the previous record.

The scores include a formula that takes into account the birds weight, the length of its beard, and the length of each spur. Tennessee hunters are allowed to harvest up to four bearded birds (no more than one per day) during the spring season.

It was the spurs that caught the attention of Cord when he and his hunting pal Travis Ward walked up not he bird they had just successfully called close enough to bag while hunting the edge of a field.

"Our jaws dropped," said Cord. "We had never seen spurs like that."

In case anyone might think Cord was a lucky hunter, he is quite good at pursing wild turkeys. He had already taken his limit and plans to spend the remainder of this season helping others have successful hunts.

Here are the measurements that are pending certification from the NWTF:

Weight: 25.37; Beard length: 12 7/16 inches; Right spur: 2 1/6; Left spur: 1 7/8
Total score: 89.5625

Hunters who want to understand NWTF rules of measuring turkeys can visit its website at www.nwtf.org.

 

Dirty Underwear And A Rock Damage Store Window

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Union City, Tenn.—Dirty underwear used as a weapon? That was the case early this morning when someone wrapped dirty underwear around a rock and threw it through the front window at Hibbett’s Sports in Union City.

Police were alerted by the business’ security company of a broken glass report at 3 a.m. today. When police arrived at the business at 1700 W. Reelfoot Ave., they discovered the lower window in front of the store shattered. Inside there was a dirty pair of Southern Wind boxer shorts and the rock.

Officers went through the store with an employee and found nothing was missing and no entry by the perpetrator.

"Dino Egg Hunt" At Discovery Park Saturday

Union City, Tenn.--It's almost time for the popular egg hunt at Discovery Park of America! This Saturday, April 15th, bring your Easter baskets out to enjoy a great day full of fun activities and egg hunts! There will be bounce houses, face painting, a bubbles station, yard games and more all on the Great Lawn beginning at 11:00 AM!

The Easter Bunny will also be around to take pictures with children and get everyone excited about the Dino Egg Hunt! The times and age categories are as follows:
2:00 Ages 2 and under
2:20 Ages 3-4
2:40 Ages 5-7
3:00 Ages 8-12

Parents will not be allowed to egg hunt with their children. However, they can watch their child enjoy the egg hunt from behind barriers that will be set up around the Great Lawn. We hope you can come out and spend all day at Discovery Park of America! Sponsored by Crosswind Church

  

W. Earl Brown To Appear In MSU Production

Murray, Ky.. — W. Earl Brown, actor in many film, theatre and television roles, will star in the role of Big Daddy in Murray State University’s upcoming production of Tennessee Williams’ “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.”    

Brown, who graduated from Murray State University’s theatre program in 1986, continues a long career in Hollywood and beyond as an accomplished actor. After graduating from Murray State, Brown received his M.F.A. from DePaul University's theatre school in 1989. He has appeared in television, including “Deadwood”, “True Detective”, American Crime”, and movies including “Scream”, “There’s Something About Mary” and “Being John Malkovich”.

Lissa Graham, director of Murray State’s production of “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,” said, “People should come out and see Earl work his magic on stage. It is very different seeing someone on a TV, or a large film screen, and watching them work live and on stage. The theatre has the vibrancy that allows actors like Earl to feel the audience and the others onstage, and it is fun to see Earl respond in the moment.”  

“Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” runs April 27–29 at 7:30 p.m. and April 30 at 2:30 p.m. All performances are in the Robert E. Johnson Theatre in the Doyle Fine Arts Center on Murray State’s campus.  Reservations can be made by calling 270-809-4421 or by visiting murraystatetickets.com.

 

Hornbeak Man Escapes Serious Injury In Crash

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Union City, Tenn.—A Hornbeak man escaped serious injury in a spectacular crash Tuesday morning in Union City.

Jeff Clanton, age 35, was traveling on Stad Ave. and failed to negotiate a curve, overcorrected to the left and then to the right and went airborne. The left front tire of his vehicle landed on a parked car at Union City Auto Sales, snapped a sign at the business, then overturned, landing on its left side.

According to the police report, Clanton suffered possible injury, but was not transported to a hospital. He was cited for failure to exercise due care.

Quota Easter Bake Sale

Paris, Tenn.—The Paris Quota Club will hold its annual Easter Bake Sale from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday, April 15, at the Commercial Bank & Trust Mineral Wells Ave. branch.





Wednesday, April 12, 2017


Special Olympics Draws Large Crowd

Paris, Tenn.—Henry County Juvenile Court Judge Vicki Snyder, and other Volunteers Jack Watkins and Butch Powers help Students Jacob Boone and Jaden Johnson with their medals at today’s Special Olympics while fellow Volunteer Ken Rhodes looks on at right. The event was held at Henry County Patriot Stadium with a full house of students, parents and other volunteers cheering on the participants. Snyder, Powers and Rhodes are with the Paris-Lakeway Kiwanis Club, which sponsors the event every year. (Shannon McFarlin photo).


Hostess Princess Court Visits Nashville

Nashville, Tenn.—It’s been a long day for the World’s Biggest Fish Fry Hostess Princess, her court and Paris-Henry County Jaycees volunteers today, as they made the annual visit to the State Capitol. Hostess Princess Jasmine Jones and her court of Calista Herrera, Alison Reagor, Julia Dye and Roezona Godbott were given the red carpet treatment, with proclamations from State Rep. Tim Wirgau, above, sitting in Senators' seats on the Senate Floor, and touring other Nashville attractions. (Photo courtesy of World’s Biggest Fish Fry).   

Grove High School Memorabilia On Display

Paris, Tenn.—Blue Devils take note. A large memorabilia collection from the former Grove High School is now on display at the Paris-Henry County Heritage Center. Donated by the Inman estate recently, the memorabilia includes photographs, banners, patches and other items from the former high school. In photo, Steve Cannon of Paris looks over the memorabilia. The Heritage Center is open Tuesday-Saturday and is located on N. Poplar St. in Paris. (Shannon McFarlin photos).

 

Holt’s Traffic Camera Bill Dies In Committee

Nashville, Tenn.—It may be back to the drawing board for State Rep. Andy Holt (R-Dresden), whose war against traffic cameras is well known. Holt’s controversial bill regulating traffic cameras has died in committee and Holt withdrew the bill.

The bill would have put new restrictions on traffic cameras and would have kept names of those who did not pay traffic camera fines secret.

During discussion in the Transportation Committee, Representative Bill Dunn had asked Holt how many speeding tickets he had himself. “Couldn’t tell you,” Holt responded.

Holt has made no secret of his dislike for traffic cameras and his belief that they are unconstitutional. He also has said he does not intend to pay any tickets he receives and has videotaped himself burning his speeding tickets.


Arrest Made In March Joy Street Incident

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-A Lauderdale County man was arrested Monday in Henry County for his involvement in a shooting incident which occurred on Joy Street in Paris in March.

Henry County Sheriff’s Deputy Sgt. David Powell arrested Larenzo Higgs, age 25, on a charge of aggravated assault.

As WENK/WTPR reported at the time of the incident, a warrant had been filed for Higgs after he allegedly shot a gun into the ground during a dispute outside 715 Joy Street. According to the report, Higgs was allegedly engaged in an argument with the mother of his child and he also hit the woman in the mouth.

 

Davis’ Contract Extended By 5-2 Vote

District Teachers Recognized

Union City, Tenn.—Meeting in regular session this week, the Obion County Schools board of education voted 5-2 to extend the contract of Director of Schools Russ Davis.

The contract extension is for two years and will expire in 2020. Davis had one year remaining on his contract. Board members voting yes were Fritz Fussell, Brian Rainey, Tim Britt, Jared Poore and Scott Northam. Voting no were Mickey Preciado and Keisha Hooper.

In other business, the board granted tenure to the following teachers:

Black Oak Elementary – Brandy Ray, Kristen Yates
Hillcrest Elementary – Mason Storey
Lake Road Elementary – Russ Brown, Kristen Kendall, Brittany Simmons
Obion County Central High – None
Ridgemont Elementary – Debbie Capps, Jenny Crittendon, Jan McGregor, James Wooten
South Fulton Elementary – Destiny Rhodes, Ashley Wilbanks
South Fulton Middle/High – Monty Breneman, Dawn Robertson, Jason Rodehaver, Jessica Winstead

The board also recognized the Teachers of the Year:

School Level Teachers of the Year:

Black Oak:  Melissa Jones and Richard Lynn

Hillcrest:  Ashleigh Wilds and Chanda Peal

Lake Road:  Jeanne Foster and Brittany Simmons

Obion County Central:  Andy Zimmerman

Ridgemont:  Kim Cooper and Kelli Wisener

South Fulton Elementary:  Patti May and Christa Hankins

South Fulton Middle/High:  Leah McFarland and Melanie Curlin

Obion County Teachers of the Year:  

Ashleigh Wilds, PreK-4

Chanda Peal, 5-8

Melanie Curlin, 9-12


Cottage Grove In Forefront Of Recycling

Cottage Grove, Tenn.—Cottage Grove Mayor David Jackson reported to the City Legislative Council Tuesday night that tiny Cottage Grove is still making a name for itself in recycling, even on the state-wide stage.

He said Cottage Grove is in the Top 10 cities in the state in terms of recycling per capita, even above Nashville, Knoxville and other large cities.

Cottage Grove has been in the forefront in Henry County and the area with its curbside recycling program.

Board member John Weiher suggested a city-wide metal pick-up day for metal on personal property. A date will be set next month.

Weiher also reported that the city siren was deactivated for a time while repairs were made.

In other business, council vote to restore the city beauty pageant and decided it probably will be held in December.

 

UC Schools Has New Board Chair, Band Director

Union City, Tenn.—The Union City Schools board of education has a new chairman to replace a long-time member who recently moved.

Karl Ullrich was elected new chairman, to replace Glenda Caudle, who moved out of state. Ullrich has represented Ward 2 since 2008.

Caudle served Ward 1 on the board and she has been replaced by Tim James, also of Ward 1.

The board also has hired Jason Deem to replace longtime band Director John Easley, who earlier had announced his pending retirement. Deem has worked for the school system for 11 years and has been assistant band director.

New UC Service Fee Implemented

Union City, Tenn.-Union City City Manager Kathy Dillon has announced a new service fee is being implemented for people who pay their utility bills late.

Effective June 1, the service fee for water accounts which are paid after 10 a.m. on the cut-off day will increase from the current $25 to $75, if paid during office hours. If paid after hours, the fee will increase from $50 to $100.




Tuesday, April 11, 2017


Memorial Service For Pollack Family Wednesday

     

 

Paris, Tenn.--Memorial Visitation for Jimmy Dale Pollack, Carrie Louise Clark Pollack, Jimmy Dale “J.J.” Pollack, Jr., Ivey Louise Pollack, and Callie Lee Pollack will be held Wednesday, April 12, 2017 from 2:00 p.m. – 5:00 pm at Sulphur Well Church of Christ, 1760 Oak Grove Rd. South, Springville, TN 38256.  A memorial service will begin at 5:00 p.m., with Randy Stephens of Sulphur Well Church of Christ and Larry Dukes of Point Pleasant Baptist Church officiating. 

 

All five family members died Friday, April 7, 2016, at their residence in Buchanan, TN.

 

Jimmy Dale Pollack, age 39, of Buchanan, TN, was born August 26, 1977, in Union City, TN, to the late Roy Lee Pollack and Charlene Lyles Pollack, who survives, of Buchanan, TN.    Jimmy was a self-employed small engine repair shop owner, located in the Kentucky lake area.  He was Baptist in faith.  Besides his mother, Jimmy is survived by two daughters, Lily Pollack and Rose Pollack, both of Buchanan, TN; one aunt, Nancy Ann Verble of Whiteville, TN; and one uncle, Samuel J. Lyles, of White Plains, NJ.    Besides his father, Jimmy was also preceded in death by his wife, Carrie Clark Pollack; one son, Jimmy Dale “J.J” Pollack Jr.; and two daughters, Ivey Pollack and Callie Pollack.

 

Carrie Louise Clark Pollack, age 36, of Buchanan, TN, was born December 14, 1980, in Berrien Center, MI, to Frank Arthur Clark and Carolyn Louise Ott Clark, who both survive, of Eau Claire, MI.   Carrie was a homemaker, a member of Point Pleasant Baptist Church, and she had a genuine love for the outdoors.  She was well loved by all her family both here and in Michigan.  Jimmy and Carrie were married in April of 2002.  Along with her parents, Carrie is survived by two daughters, Lily Pollack and Rose Pollack, both of Buchanan, TN; three brothers, David Ott of Watervliet, MI, Frank Raymond Clark of Berrien Springs, MI, and Brad Matthew Clark of Benton Harbor, MI; one grandmother, Rose Mary Clark of Benton Harbor, MI; and several aunts and uncles in Michigan.   She was preceded in death by her husband, Jimmy Dale Pollack; one son, Jimmy Dale, “J.J” Pollack Jr.; two daughters, Ivey Pollack and Callie Pollack; grandparents, Jack and Melissa Ott; one grandfather, Wayne Clark; and two uncles.  

 

Jimmy Dale “J.J” Pollack Jr., age 14, of Buchanan, TN, was born November 5, 2002, in St. Charles, LA, to the late Jimmy Dale Pollack and the late Carrie Clark Pollack.  Jimmy was an 8th grade student at Lakewood School in Henry County.  He attended Point Pleasant Baptist Church and Sulphur Well Church of Christ.  He loved fishing, the outdoors, swimming, and collected matchbox cars. 

 

Ivey Louise Pollack, age 4, of Buchanan, TN, was born July 26, 2012, in McKenzie, TN, to the late Jimmy Dale Pollack and the late Carrie Louise Clark Pollack.  Ivey attended Sulphur Well Church of Christ.  She loved playing with her sister’s hair, riding her bicycle, singing and dancing. 

 

Callie Lee Pollack, age 3, of Buchanan, TN, was born July 20, 2013, in McKenzie, TN, to the late Jimmy Dale Pollack and the late Carrie Louise Clark Pollack.  Callie’s tender heart and quiet spirit was loved by all who knew her.

 

J.J., Ivey, and Callie are survived by two sisters, Lily Pollack and Rose Pollack, both of Buchanan, TN;  a grandmother, Charlene Lyles Pollack of Buchanan, TN; grandparents, Frank Arthur Clark and Carolyn Louise Ott Clark, of Eau Claire, MI;  great grandmother, Rose Mary Clark of Benton Harbor, MI; and several aunts and uncles.   In addition to their parents, brother, and sisters, they were preceded in death by one grandfather, Roy Lee Pollack; one great grandfather, Wayne Clark; great grandparents, Jack and Melissa Ott; and two great uncles. 

 

Arrangements are be handled by Ridgeway Funeral Home, 201 Dunlap St, Paris, TN.

 

Memorial Donations may be made to:  Charlene Pollack, c/o Security Bank & Trust, 210 West Washington Street,  P.O. Box 1209, Paris, TN 38242, or you may call in a donation to 731-642-6644.   

 


Benefit For Pollack Children Set

Paris, Tenn.--The Henry County Sheriff's Office is holding a benefit for the Pollack children from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday, April 20th at the Henry County Fairgrounds. Rose and Lily Pollack survived a fire in which their parents and three siblings perished.

Ribeye and chicken sandwiches with chips and a drink for $8 will be sold.

The sheriff’s office will deliver orders of six or more. If you would like a delivery, please call 363-4445 starting at 9 am the morning of the benefit to place your order. Otherwise, just stop by the Fairgrounds anytime between 11-2 that day and pick up a sandwich (or two!).

According to the press release from the sheriff’s office, “We are so proud to serve such a loving and giving community! The Pollack children have already received so much love and help from this county and we would like to keep that going! Please stop by and eat lunch with us next Thursday so we can continue to bless the Pollack children in their time of great loss.”

350 Experience “Reality Store”

Paris, Tenn.—Some 350 8th Graders experienced a slice of real life at the “Reality Store” at Henry County High School Friday morning. The event is funded through a Plus Endowment grant and is an introduction to adult life skills and opportunities. (Photo by HCHS).

 

After More Chases, Suspect Still Eludes Officers

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Dresden, Tenn.—A suspect being sought for several weeks by the Weakley County Sheriff’s Office has again eluded officers—twice in the past two days. The suspect was spotted Monday afternoon, but dodged capture after both a vehicle and foot chase and despite a Tennessee Highway Patrol helicopter being involved in the search.

Deputies spotted Darren Walton, age 39, on Monday afternoon in the Austin Springs area. According to Captain Randall McGowan, Walton was driving a green Jeep Cherokee and after trying to get him to stop the vehicle, Walton took off at a high rate of speed on several backroads between Latham and Dukedom.

At that point, McGowan said, Walton drove through a field and into a wooded area and became stuck. Walton abandoned the vehicle and deputies tracked him on foot for several hours. McGowan said at that point, it is believed that Walton went into the north fork of the Obion River.

The jeep that he was driving was stolen from Montgomery Co.

Then again, just before 4 a.m. today, a truck was reported stolen from a residence near Palmersville. McGowan said, “Deputies located the vehicle on Webb Road and after a short chase, the vehicle also drove into a field and was abandoned.”

Deputies and the THP helicopter pilot searched for the driver in the woods north of Palmersville, but were unable to find him.

McGowan said items found in the truck were believed to have been stolen by the driver from another location.

Walton is wanted for his part in breaking into hunting and fishing cabins several weeks ago.

 

Mt. Zion To Host Good Friday Evening Service

Paris, Tenn.—Mt. Zion Baptist Church will be hosting a Good Friday service Friday evening in their new church building at 401 Irvine St. (former West Paris Baptist Church).

The service begins at 7 p.m. and will feature several pastors from Paris and elsewhere: Pastor Richard Adkisson from Progressive Baptist Church; Pastor James McKinnie from Melton Grove Baptist Church; Pastor John Dandridge from Quinn Chapel AME; Pastor Franklin Collins Jr. from Bluff Creek Baptist Church in Brownsville; Pastor Michael Cowans from the Church of The Living God in Paris; Pastor Alex Thomas from Hickman, Ky.; and Pastor Reginald Currie, also from Brownsville.

The pastors will be speaking on several passages from Scripture and they will bring their choirs and congregations. Special worship will be held by the Mt. Zion Dance Team.

 

Second Bomb Threat Received By UC Business

Union City, Tenn.—Union City Police are reporting a second bomb threat called in to Top of the World Distributing on N. First St.

The second bomb threat was received Saturday, after an initial bomb threat was called in sometime overnight between April 6 and April 7. In both calls, the caller was a male. In the first call, the man said, “You put me out last year, I'm back and I'm coming for revenge and going to blow everything you have up".

 

Antioch UM Church Easter Egg Hunt

Springville, Tenn.-Antioch United Methodist Church at 3116 W. Antioch Rd., will be hosting an Easter Egg Hunt at the church from 10:30 a.m. to noon Saturday, April 15. It is for children ages two through 4th grade and the event includes a coloring contest, snacks, storytelling and egg hunt.

Easter Egg Hunt At Atkins-Porter Rec Center

Paris, Tenn.--The Springhill Baptist Church will host an Easter Egg Hunt from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 15, at Atkins-Porter Recreation Center on Highland St., Paris. 



Monday, April 10, 2017


80 New Jobs Coming To Obion County

South Fulton, Tenn. — Eighty new jobs are coming to Obion County

Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner Bob Rolfe, along with ColorCoat, Inc. officials, announced this afternoon the company will locate new operations in South Fulton.

The windows and doors coating application company will invest $600,000 and create 80 new jobs in Obion County. “I want to thank ColorCoat for choosing to locate its new facility in South Fulton and creating 80 new jobs in Obion County,” Rolfe said. “This is a big win for South Fulton and the state of Tennessee, and I look forward to our future partnership with ColorCoat and seeing this company grow and succeed in our state.” ColorCoat is the largest third party exterior coatings applicator for the window and door industry in the United States. The 14-year-old company has operations in many states across the U.S.

“We are excited about opening the newest branch of ColorCoat Inc. in the state of Tennessee,” ColorCoat CEO Mario Bekeris said. “Everyone here has been so welcoming and helpful. We thank you all for your hospitality and look forward to becoming part of the community of South Fulton.”  ColorCoat’s new facility will be used to paint vinyl and fiberglass windows and doors. With this new facility, ColorCoat will be better equipped to service its customers and the surrounding states. 

“I am excited about the new industry coming to South Fulton,” South Fulton Mayor David Lamb said. “One of my goals when I was elected mayor was to try and bring more industry and retail business to the area so it would provide more badly needed jobs. I hope with ColorCoat’s announcement will come more industry and jobs to South Fulton.”

Lindsay Frilling, CEO of the Obion County Joint Economic Development Council said, “We are very excited to have ColorCoat, Inc. join our Obion County business community and are especially excited they have chosen South Fulton,”

"TVA and the Weakley County Municipal Electric System congratulate ColorCoat, Inc. on its announcement to locate and create new jobs in Obion County,” John Bradley, TVA senior vice president of economic development, said. “We are pleased to partner with the State of Tennessee, Obion County Economic Development Council, the City of South Fulton and Obion County officials to facilitate ColorCoat’s new location decision.”

 


Pitching In To Help



Paris, Tenn.—Brother Andre Richardson of Mt. Zion Baptist Church, left, and Najee Ray were among dozens who volunteered their time Saturday for the third City of Paris “Clean Sweep Day”. Saturday’s event was held on Wynn Street and included several city of Paris officials, city of Boliver officials and volunteers from local organizations. Najee Ray was quarterback with the Henry County Patriots, is now a senior at UTM and came home from the weekend to help. More photos on Clean Sweep Day were posted on Saturday. (Shannon McFarlin photo).



Memorial Services Set For Pollack Family


Paris, Tenn.--Memorial Services have been set for the five members of the Pollack family who were killed last week in a fire at their home on Hwy. 119.


Ridgeway Funeral Home is serving the family of Jimmy Sr., Carrie, Jimmy Jr. “J.J.”, Callie and Ivy Pollack who died April 7, in a fire at their residence on Hwy. 119.


Memorial Visitation will be Wednesday, April 12, 2017 from 2 – 5 pm at Sulphur Well Church of Christ with a Memorial Service at 5:00 pm at the Church.

Memorials may be made to Security Bank - (Charlene Pollack, C/O Security Bank and Trust, 210 West Washington St, PO Box 1209, Paris TN 38242) or you may call in a donation to 731-642-6644.


Easter Egg Hunts Coming Up

Paris, Tenn.—Easter Egg Hunts will be on the minds of local children in the coming days as several are already scheduled in Henry County. All are free.

The W.G. Rhea Library will be hold Glow In The Dark Easter Egg Hunt for children aged 11-18 at the library at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 13.

Bring a basket or bag and a flashlight. Prizes will be given in addition to all the Easter Eggs. To register call the library at 642 1702 extension O by the end of Monday, April 10.

The Paris Landing State Park Easter Egg Hunt will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, April 15. Bring a basket with you. It’s for ages 2-12 and it’s sponsored by the Paris Landing Volunteer Fire Department.

Russwood Baptist Church will be holding an Easter Egg Hunt from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 15. Snacks and drinks also provided.




Bomb Threat Called In To UC Business


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director


Union City, Tenn.—Union City Police are investigating a bomb threat called in to the Top Of The World Distributors at 100 N. First St. Friday.


When police arrived at the scene, they listened to a message from a male caller left at the front desk. The message said, “You put me out last year, I'm back and I'm coming for revenge and going to blow everything you have up".  It could not be determined who the caller was.


Officers checked around the building to make sure there weren't any strange looking objects or backpacks left in the area and determined it safe for the employees to be at the business.


West Tenn Impact 11U Wins Tourney



Paris, Tenn.—The West Tennessee Impact 11U team won first place over the weekend in the USSSA West Tennessee Throwdown Tournament held at McNeill Park in Paris. The team went 3-0 in the tourney. Players left to right waiting for their trophies at the end of the tourney: Ben Puckett, Luke Cooper, Ethan Ramsey, Carter Hedges, Jax Bennett, Graydon Hall, Skippy Gordon, Truitt Webb, Graham Bartholomew, and Javion Boyd. (Team photo).

 



Electrical Lineworkers Honored Today



Trenton, Tenn.--Lineworkers serve on the frontlines of our nation’s energy needs, and Gibson Electric Membership Corporation asks you to join them today in honoring those who work in challenging and dangerous conditions to keep the lights on.


“Lineworkers are the first responders of our electric cooperative, and they always get the job done,” said Gibson EMC President and CEO Dan Rodamaker.  “No matter the time or the weather, if the lights go out, so do they,” he said.  “Our lineworkers are committed and critical to our success.  We celebrate them not only on this day, but all year long,” Rodamaker said.


Gibson EMC is proud to honor the 42 lineworkers who maintain over 3,500 miles of power lines in its 12-county service area. The co-op invites its members to take a moment and thank a lineworker for the work they do. On April 10, use #ThankALineman on social media to show your support for the men and women who light our lives.

 

Arrest Warrant Issued After Stabbing


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director


Union City, Tenn.—Union City Police have issued an arrest warrant for Darshetah Jones of 1008 S. First St. on a charge of aggravated assault after she allegedly stabbed her boyfriend Sunday.


Officers were dispatched to Baptist Hospital ER and found the victim bleeding badly from his upper left arm. He told officers that Jones had stabbed him because he had been gone since Friday and came back Sunday. 


The victim said the couple were sitting around the house, ‘smoking a joint’ and he thought everything was o.k. but she became upset and stabbed him when he tried to leave the house. The victim received 13 staples in his arm and was transported to Vanderbilt Medical Center for further evaluation.

 



Free Arthritis Exercise Program Set 

 

Paris, Tenn.-- University of Tennessee Extension Michele Atkins will be offering a free Arthritis Foundation Exercise Program on April 17.  


The six-week program is designed for people with arthritis to reduce pain and stiffness, help maintain or improve mobility, muscle strength, and functional ability. Arthritis sufferers of all ages and mobility levels can benefit from the low impact course. Extension educators design each class to meet the needs of all participants.  


Classes will be held every Monday and Wednesday from 9-10 am, April 17th through May 24th at the UT Extension Office, 1120 Tyson Avenue. 

 

For more information or to sign up for the program, please call the UT Extension Office at 642-2941. Class is limited to first 25.



Saturday, April 8, 2017


Dozens Turn Out For Clean Sweep Day

Paris, Tenn.—Dozens of volunteers turned out for Saturday’s Clean Sweep Day on Wynn Street in Paris. Sponsored by the city of Paris, this is the third Clean Sweep Day and it attracted volunteers from Mt. Zion Baptist Church, the Paris Boxing Club, Bethel University, Henry County Litter Program, the Tennessee Valley Community Church and the Paris Christian Church. The mayor of Bolivar Barrett Stevens and Boliver City Administrator Sheila Dellinger also volunteered their time for the event. “It was nice to partner with the city of Paris since they were so nice to help us for one of our clean-up events,” Barrett said. Volunteers also included Paris Mayor Carlton Gerrell, City Manager Kim Foster, Economic Development Director Jennifer Morris, Commissioners Jackie Jones and Sam Tharpe and City Building Inspector Mike Brown. In photos, Commissioner Jackie Jones and Isaiah Hutcherson enjoy the day; plenty of volunteers working. (Shannon McFarlin photos).  

“A Taste Of Quinn” Indeed

Paris, Tenn.—There was plenty of good food being served by the ladies of Quinn Chapel AME Church for “A Taste Of Quinn” Saturday at the Central Services Building in Paris. A large buffet of fried chicken, greens, ham, corn bread, dressing, ham hocks, macaroni and cheese, fried fish, hush puppies and much, much, more delighted everyone. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

 

“Ragtime”, Ward Shine At The Dixie

Huntingdon, Tenn.—Alexis Ward of Paris, center, shines as Sara in “Ragtime: The Musical”, now being performed at The Dixie by The Bethel University Renaissance Theatre. The production is stellar and other stars in the performance are Amelia Kozlosky at the Little Boy, Adam Stevens as Father, Payton Ann Strawser as Mother, Zakkeus Bonds as Coalhouse Walker Jr. and Nicholas Darnell as Booker T. Washington. The production is directed by Brian Hill and Technical Director is Bala Boyd of Paris. There are two more shows being performed today, at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Call box office 731 986 2100 for tickets. Tickets are $15. (Shannon McFarlin photo).



Friday, April 7, 2017


Cause Of Fatal Fire May Be Wood Stove

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—Henry County Sheriff Monte Belew said this afternoon that investigators believe they have pinpointed the cause of last night’s blaze that killed five members of the Pollack family on Hwy. 119.

Belew told WENK/WTPR that the wood-burning stove in the family’s house trailer was broken. He said, “The stove pipe was broken and they had repaired it, but we are thinking now that was the cause of the fire.”

Paris Landing Volunteer Fire Chief Reggie Coles said the house trailer was two single-wide trailers that were placed together. He said the blaze was already engulfing the home when firefighters arrived just a few minutes after receiving the first call.

The parents, Jimmy and Carrie Pollack, their son, Jimmy, Jr., age 14, their daughters Ivy, age 4, and Callie, age 3, perished in the blaze. Two of their daughters, Lily, 13 and Rose, 8, survived and are staying with their grandmother.

A collection for the little girls has been started at Barton Health Clinic at 2835 E. Wood St. We posted a story earlier listing the little girls’ sizes and items that are being collected for them.

The Henry County Sheriff’s Office has set up a fund for the family at Security Bank in Paris.

 


Barton Clinic Starts Collection For Fire Victims

Items already collected for the girls. (Barton Clinic photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—A collection is being taken up at the Barton Family Health Clinic in Paris for the two little girls who survived last night’s devastating fire that took the lives of their parents, brother and two sisters.

Barton Clinic is located at 2835 E. Wood St. The clinic has compiled a list of the items needed by the family. So far, the Clinic has been able to stuff backpacks full of supplies for the girls, as well as other items to take to them. But more is needed.

Lily is a 13 year old and in 7th grade. Rose is an 8 year old and in second grade.

Lily’s favorite color is blue and she loves to draw and doodle. She loves jeans with flowing pretty blouses. 
Her sizes are:

Tops: 14-16 girls or small in ladies 
Pants: 14-16 (tall and thin)
Undergarments: 14, 34 sports 
Shoe: 10 women's

Lily does wear eye glasses that were lost in in the fire, however have already ordered new glasses.

Rose doesn’t have a favorite color yet, but she loves to draw and doodle, too. She loves to dress like Lily.

Rose’s sizes are:

Tops/Bottoms: 7-8 girls 
Shoes: 5 wide - kids 
Undergarments: 8 girls

 The Clinic will be open today until 6 pm and tomorrow 10-12 noon if you wish to drop off items.

 

HC Schools Releases Statement on Fatal Fire

Paris, Tenn.-Henry County Schools Superintendent Dr. Brian Norton has released the following statement following the fire that killed five, including Lakewood 8th Grader Jimmy Pollack, Jr., his parents and two sisters:

"The Henry County School District is deeply saddened and mourns the tragic loss of one of our students. Our hearts go out to the family, friends, and Lakewood School family of 8th grader Jimmy Pollack. We are all deeply affected by the tragic loss of our students and will covet your prayers in the days ahead. Students and teachers shared with me that Jimmy was always happy and nice and kind to everyone. I want to assure everyone that the Lakewood School administration, teachers, staff, counselors, and support staff from the district, were prepared to embrace all in need of comfort this morning. In the days ahead, there will be difficult moments and our school and district family will be ready to meet the needs of our students as they arise. If you think your child may need some extra help do not hesitate to call Ms. Veazey or Mr. Bell at Lakewood so they can help."


Parents, Three Children Killed In Fire

Two Children Survive

At this morning's press conference, from left: Captain Adam Jenkins, Chief Deputy Damon Lowe, Sheriff Monte Belew, Coroner Danny Tucker, Paris Landing Fire Chief Reggie Coles. (McFarlin photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—Five members of a family—both parents and three children—perished in an overnight fire at their home on Hwy. 119 in Henry County. Two children survived.

Parents Jimmy and Carrie Pollack, and children Jimmy, age 14, Ivy, age 4, and Callie, age 3, were killed in the blaze which firefighters said quickly engulfed their trailer home at 4642 Hwy. 119 in the lake area near the Kentucky State line. The parents are both ages 37.

Two children, Lillie and Rose, survived the blaze, which Henry County Sheriff Monte Belew was due to heroic actions by big sister Lillie. “Lillie helped her little sister get out and helped to save her life. She did a wonderful job, an outstanding job.”

The 911 call about the house fire was received at 11:50 p.m. last night and the Paris Landing Volunteer Fire Department was first on the scene, finding that two-thirds of the structure was already engulfed in fire.

“It’s been a long night, a tough night,” Belew said. “It’s a tremendous loss of life. I really don’t know what to say other than it’s a huge loss of life. I’ll never forget this day nor will any of first responders.”

An emotional Chief Coles said, “It’s the worst tragedy I’ve seen in my 40 years as a firefighter.” Coles said two of his volunteer firefighters work for the system and knew the children and family. “We’re a small department where everybody knows everybody and it’s been tough.”

Rose suffered minor first-degree burns to her neck and face and Belew said she is being admitted to Calloway-Murray Hospital in Murray. Belew said she probably will be kept overnight and released tomorrow.

Belew said Lillie is with her grandmother, other family members and her church family at Sulphur Well Church of Christ.

The parents were found in their bedroom and in a short time later, the bodies of the three children were found.

The State Bomb and Arson Squad are at the scene as basic routine procedure, Belew said. “Our investigators are there, too, but we don’t have any reason to believe it’s suspicious at all. I will say there was some faulty wiring and there was a wood stove burning, providing heat. There were no smoke alarms.”

Belew said it’s emotional for the family’s friends and family, as well as first responders.

Sulphur Well Church of Christ Pastor Brother Randy Stephens was on hand at the press conference this morning and he and his church members have offered their services to the family.

Likewise, Lakewood Elementary School, where the children attend and attended, made arrangements for counselors to be present today for students who knew the children and family.

Belew said he called Lakewood Principal Amy Veazey around 4 a.m. “and she right away started making accomodations to assist the kids who are grieving.”

The Sheriff’s Office has set up a fund at Security Bank to help the children and family in the name of the children’s grandmother, Mary Charlene Pollack.

Funeral arrangements will be handled by Ridgeway Funeral Home in Paris.

Cisco Saves The Day--Again

Paris, Tenn.--Thursday morning Henry County Sheriff Monte Belew received a call from the Sheriff of the Dyer County Sheriff’s Office. He was asking for help in locating a missing woman that had walked away.

The missing lady, Cheryl Kirby, 54 years old, of Dyer County has some mental problems and had walked away from her home early Thursday morning without any of her meds or her cell phone, according to Henry County Sheriff’s Captain Damon Lowe.

Sheriff Jeff Box of Dyer Co Sheriff’s Office, reached out to Sheriff Belew, saying he heard that we had one of the best bloodhounds and handler in West TN and was asking for us to help him find this lady.

Sgt Wayne Fuqua and his partner Cisco headed to Dyer County to assist.

Sgt Fuqua arrived and was briefed as to what had happen and where officers had searched during the morning hours.

“We started the search at the house and gathered a scent article,” said Fuqua. “We talked to neighbors and tried to get the most precise last sighting and time frame of when she was seen. We also made efforts to get her last known path of travel. I took Cisco and worked him around the yard of her home so he could get a catalog of the different scents, as well a personal item of the victim’s [Kirby].”

After less than two hours Sgt Fuqua and Cisco were standing over the woman, who was covered up in a brush pile. Ms Kirby was then treated by medical personal to make sure she was ok.

Sheriff Belew said, “Sgt Fuqua and Cisco have been so successful in their finds, not only in Henry County but in several surrounding counties as well, that when someone goes missing they are the team everyone wants!”

 

Webb: Grove Tower Should Be, Will Be Preserved

David Webb presents a program on the past and future of Grove Tower. (McFarlin photo)

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-Henry County Historical Society President David Webb spoke Thursday night on the legacy of Grove Tower, its past and its future at a special meeting of the Historical Society.

Webb, who also serves as County Historian, a County Commissioner and teacher at Henry County High School, spoke of the importance of maintaining and preserving the structure. He also reassured Historical Society members that although the County Schools board of education is discussing the possibility of moving its central offices from Grove Tower, no one has said the structure will be torn down or that it will be abandoned.

“Grove Tower is a landmark historic building and it should be preserved as a monument” to E.W. Grove and all that he did for Henry County, Webb said.

Although the structure is over 100 years old, the building exterior is structurally sound, although it does need sprucing up. The building also is equipped with a modern electrical system and plumbing. It has a dry basement and is handicapped accessible.

On the negative side, the structure does need stabilizing of its interior structure, needs some repairs and the front porch covering needs to be restored.

There are serious discussions ongoing now to appoint an advisory committee which would study the issue, Webb said.

Grove Tower is significant for several reasons: the Grove High School which formerly was located in the building was the first privately endowed public high school in Tennessee and the second in the nation.

It also is the birthplace of vocational agricultural education in the U.S., Webb said.  Dudley Clements was the nation’s first vocational ag teacher and Grove was the home of the nation’s first FFA leadership camp.

 

Hutchens Seriously Injured In Accident


Union City, Tenn.—WENK/WTPR Sports Commentator Mike Hutchens was seriously injured in an automobile accident Thursday afternoon in Union City.

Hutchens, who also is a long-time sports writer for The Union City Messenger, is awaiting hip replacement surgery today at The Med in Memphis. The two-vehicle accident occurred on Everett Blvd. near Applebee’s and McDonald’s. Hutchens was airlifted to The Med following the accident.

According to The Messenger, Hutchens suffered the hip injury, a broken rib and facial cuts.

The accident report from the Union City Police was not completed early this morning, but will be released later.

  

Easton’s Angels Event Set For Saturday

Paris, Tenn.-The 2nd annual Easton’s Angel’s Light Up The Night event will be held Saturday, April 8, at the Henry County Fairgrounds. The event begins at 5 p.m., with the one-mile walk beginning at dark.

Founder Brittney Green said the event will be held from 5-9 p.m., with inflatables, the Ray Lewis band performing, and Mom’s Kitchen and Perry’s BBQ selling food. Glow gear contest will be held for adults and kids and a lantern release will be held after the walk.

Registration is open from 5-7 p.m. Night of the registration is $20 for shirt and bracelet and access to inflatables. Kids are $15.

Two families will be speaking before the walk on how Easton’s Angels has impacted their lives. Air Evac also will be set up.

 

Two Arrested On Drug Charges In UC

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Union City, Tenn.—Two Obion County residents were arrested on drug charges after a traffic stop in the 1500 block of E. Reelfoot Ave. Union City Police were aware that driver Joshua Pollock of 410 Frazier in Troy, was driving on a revoked license and stopped the vehicle.

Consent to search was given by the car owner, who was a passenger. Police found two small bags containing meth and a hypo needle and Pollock said it belonged to him.

Police also found a black jacket containing 3.3. grams of marijuana, a pill with a Superman ‘S’ symbol on it and two small bags of cocaine. Passenger Breanna Bland of Martin accepted ownership of that and said the pill was Ecstacy.

Both Pollock and Bland were taken to the Obion County Jail and booked on drug charges.

 


Five Killed In Trailer Fire

Paris, Tenn.--A devastating fire last night on Hwy. 119 killed five people, including children.

Henry County Sheriff Monte Belew said early this morning the fire started around midnight in a house trailer and that several fire departments in the county were called to the fire. Belew said the fire was near the Kentucky state line.

A press conference will be held at 10 a.m. this morning at which more details will be released. WENK/WTPR will publish more information as it is available.





Thursday, April 6, 2017


Good Progress Being Made On City LED Program

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The project to install LED lights in the city of Paris is “making good headway” and City Commissioners Thursday night approved a resolution adding an additional $400,000 to the project, if needed.

The resolution approved by the city last month was based on audit results that were incomplete and may not have been enough to cover the complete cost of the project, according to City Manager Kim Foster. The new resolution brings the total dollar amount of the project to “not to exceed $2.5M”. Foster cautioned, however, the city may not be spending all of that.

Russ Phillips of TRANE said the audit of all the city street lights by his staff should be complete this week, which will be followed by the design and bidding processes.

Changing all the city lights to LED is a cost and energy-saving measure for the city.

Meanwhile, Phillips said the TRANE project installing a dehumidifier at the Paris Civic Center pool is underway and the bidding process is already ongoing there.

Rick Delaney of Raymond James in Nashville said federally-taxable bonds will be sold at public sale for the LED project.

The city also approved allowing the Henry County 911 program to use its CDBG eligibility to help build a new trunking digital radio system for Paris and Henry County. 911 Director Mark Archer presented information on the request, which is intended to eliminate ‘dead zones’ in radio transmission from the county’s emergency agencies.

Present at the meeting with Archer were Paris Fire Chief Michael Williams, Assistant Chief Chuck Wade, and EMS Director Twila Rose, both of whom spoke about the problems that the ‘dead zones’ cause for agencies and their personnel.

Archer said, “We’ve had problems in our county for quite some time with our agencies not able to talk with each other.” He cited an example of first-responders not able to call out for help at a plane crash at the lake. Rose spoke about ‘dead zones’ in the Cypress, Cottage Grove, Puryear areas and even closer to Paris. “We had a situation out at Plumley” when EMS workers were attacked by a patient and they couldn’t radio out for help.

Archer said CDBG grants are being sought from both the city and Henry County, with 911 putting in $250,000 for the project.

Mayor Carlton Gerrell said, “What certainty do we have that once we have this in place that we won’t still have problems?” Archer said, “Well, we’d have to take it from there at that time. This will get the main part of the problem done.” Archer said 911 is putting together a ‘users’ group’, made up of all agencies’ representatives to oversee the project.

 Archer thanked the city and said, “We’ll look for your guidance along the way as we build this as a community.”

In other business:

--City Commission approved an update to its Sewer Use Ordinance, at the request of Paris Board of Public Utilities (BPU) General Manager Terry Wimberley. The update was discussed at length at last week’s BPU meeting. The TDEC-approved ordinances includes revised local industrial discharge limits enforced under the city’s pretreatment program.

--On second reading, the commission approved an ordinance prohibiting recreational activities from city streets. The ordinance was recommended by the city’s insurance carrier and was discussed in full at an earlier city commission meeting and at the planning commission meeting.


Catastrophe Averted At Bridge Of Hope

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—A catastrophe was averted Thursday afternoon when insulation in the attic at the Bridge of Hope Church at 1575 Hwy. 641 S caught on fire. The pastor was at the church and smelled smoke, traced it the attic and used the fire extinguisher on the fire before calling 911.

When Paris Firefighters arrived they found the pastor on the scene, with the doors open letting the smoke out.

According to the report, a halogen light had been left on in the attic and new insulation had been recently put in, which caught on fire.

Firefighters removed the light and the insulation and ventilated the structure. They were on the scene from noon until 1:45 p.m.


UC Man Charged With Solicitation Of Minor

Martin, Tenn.—A Union City man is in the Weakley County Jail today on charges that he solicited sex from an underage girl. Damian Atkeson, age 21, was arrested by Martin Police’s Internet Crimes Against Children Unit and charged with sexual solicitation of a 13-year-old. He will be arraigned in Weakley Co. General Sessions Court on April 10.

 With Assistance By Air And Land, Suspect Nabbed

         (Photo from THP helicopter--courtesy of Henry County Sheriff's Office).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—With assistance on both land and in the air, the Henry County Sheriff’s Office and its Special Response Team Wednesday apprehended a Paris man who had fled from officers trying to serve a search warrant.

Arrested was Danny Vine, age 23, 327 Head St.,of Paris, charged with reckless endangerment and evading arrest, as well as the original drug charges against him. Two others also were arrested: Darby Fusilier and Jessica Perry, both of Camden, charged with simple possession and possession of unlawful drug paraphernalia.

Deputies were attempted to serve the search warrant at 5000 Manleyville Rd. and while they were there, one of the suspects pulled up in a truck and saw the deputies at the residence, according to Captain Adam Jenkins. The truck then fled the scene and was pursued by deputies down Manleyville and then onto Mayberry Rd.

Jenkins said the truck then crashed and the driver, later identified as Vine, fled on foot through the  woods.

The Tennessee Highway Patrol’s aviation unit—namely Pilot Lee Russell—was called to assist in the search.

With a tip from a citizen, Vine was later apprehended and transported to the Henry County Jail by Cpl. Gary Carroll, Jenkins said. His bond was set at $2500 by Henry County Circuit Court Clerk Mike Wilson.

The two women, Fusilier and Perry, were at the residence when the warrant was served and they also were transported to jail.

Sheriff Monte Belew thanked everyone involved and said, “Teamwork is imperative in a situation like this, we are so thankful no one was hurt by the reckless actions of this suspect. The investigation is still ongoing and more charges are possible.”

 

Learning How To Recycle, Reuse, Reduce

Paris, Tenn.—Barry Mitchell of the Smilemaker Show kept the Kids’ Club at Rhea Elementary School entertained Wednesday afternoon, but also educated them about recycling, reusing and reducing waste. The program was sponsored by the Keep Paris/Henry County Beautiful and Litter Programs and will be held again today for Lakewood students. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

 

Old West Steakhouse To Open In Paris

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—Mystery solved. The Old West Steakhouse will be opening at 1123 E. Wood Street—the former Lalo’s Mexican Grill location.

On Wednesday, WENK/WTPR reported there were two signs proclaiming they were the future location of the Old West Steakhouse: one at the former Lalo’s restaurant and the other at the former Lepanto’s Steakhouse, both of which are located on E. Wood St.

Vickie Noles told us that the Old West Steakhouse will be opening at the former Lalo’s site on July 1. She said, “I own the name ‘Old West Steakhouse’ in the state of Tennessee. My father is Jimmy Sinis, who owns and operates the Old West Steakhouses in McKenzie and Camden.”

Noles said the interior of the restaurant is being totally re-done, with wood accents, fireplaces, all new equipment, all new décor. The Old West Steakhouse will offer homemade salad and dessert bars, buffets and great steaks.

Noles has been teaching culinary arts at Haywood School for the past six years. Noles already has her city of Paris business license.

City officials corrected their statement yesterday and said no paperwork has been filed for any restaurant to open at the former Lepanto’s location.

Commodities Being Distributed Today

Paris, Tenn.-The Northwest Tennessee Economic Development Council and the USDA are handing out April commodities this week at the Central Services Building on Jones Bend Rd. Extended.

Officials are encouraging everyone with a commodity card to pick up their boxes today. If they cannot make it today, call the office to let them know if they can pick them up tomorrow, 642-3132.

New Director Bethany Patton said, “We want everyone to have their box. If they don’t have a card and need a box, please have them call the office to see what we can do for them.”

Commodities are provided through Northwest TN Economic Development Council and the USDA. The program is designed to provide food for low income families on a quarterly basis. Food is distributed in the months of July, October, January, and April. To be eligible for commodities, the family’s income must be below a certain income threshold that takes into account family size. To sign up for commodities, the customer needs to come in to the office and bring proof of income (for everyone in the household over the age of 18), proof of address, an ID, and names of all in the household. Sign up for commodities is Monday – Thursday, any time between 8:30 - 2, and Friday, by appointment only. Commodities sign ups for the new year will begin after May 1, 2017.

 



State Officials Invited To Fish Fry

Paris, Tenn.--Paris Mayor Carlton Gerrell, along with several local officials traveled to Nashville Wednesday to personally invite Tennessee Legislators to the 64thAnnual World’s Biggest Fish Fry.  Presenting Tennessee House Speaker Beth Harwell with her invitation were. From left, Pam Martin, Donna Craig, Kim Foster, Speaker Harwell, Mayor Gerrell, Mark Johnson, Randi French and Rep. Tim Wirgau.  “Speaker Harwell accepted our invitation and we are excited to have the Speaker of House join us to celebrate the 64th Annual World’s Biggest Fish Fry,” said David Hamilton, CEO of the Henry County Alliance. (Photo taken by David Hamilton)

 

All 95 Counties’ Jobless Rates Show Decrease

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Nashville, Tenn.—After a gloomy January showing, Tennessee’s unemployment statistics show that the jobless rates have decreased in all 95 counties for February, according to data released by the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development.

 “Not only did the unemployment rate decrease in each of the state’s metropolitan areas, more importantly, the rates are down significantly in our counties with the most unemployed Tennesseans,” said TDLWD Commissioner Burns Phillips.  

All of the counties in our area are showing a significant turnaround in jobless rates from those shown in January, with Stewart County now the only one in the top ten of the highest unemployment. Stewart County now ranks 86th out of the state’s 95 counties, with a 7.5 percent rate, compared to 8.9 percent in January.

Weakley County is recording the lowest jobless rate in our area, at 5.7 percent, compared to 6.7 percent in January.

Henry County is at 6.2 percent, compared to 7.8 percent in January; Obion County is at 7 percent, compared to 8.5 percent; Carroll is at 6.8 percent, compared to 8.3 percent; Benton at 7 percent compared to 8.5 percent in January.

At 11.2 percent, Lake County had the state’s highest unemployment rate in January 2017. The estimated county rate is now 8.5 percent, nearly a three-point decrease.

For the month of February, Davidson County has the state’s lowest major metropolitan rate at 3.6 percent, a decline from 4.1 percent the previous month.  

“In January, Tennessee had three counties with an unemployment rate higher than 10 percent but now, not one county reached that level,” according to Commissioner Phillips. “While many variables determine county monthly unemployment rates, February’s report is definitely a highlight, being this early into the year.”  

 

Dempsey Issues Plea To Lesser Charge

Huntingdon, Tenn.—Attorney Ben Dempsey has pled guilty in Carroll County ircuit Court to a lesser charge of assault and offensive touching as part of a plea agreement on the original sexual battery charge that had been brought against him last summer.

Dempsey has law offices in Huntingdon and Paris.

The plea bargained charge is a misdemeanor. Dempsey was originally indicted for inappropriate touching and sexual harassment of a Huntingdon Post Office employee.

Judge Paul Summers sentenced Dempsey to six month unsupervised probation and suspended his six-month jail sentence. Dempsey was also ordered to undergo psychological testing for possible service-induced Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Dempsey is a Vietnam War veteran.

In a press release, Dempsey’s attorney Steve West of Huntingdon said that the plea agreement is not an admission of guilt, but was done in the best interests of his client and his family.

Circuit Court Judges Donald Parish and C. Creed McGinley and District Attorney Matt Stowe had all recused themselves from the case.



Wednesday, April 5, 2017


Dueling Old West Steakhouses?

                    

Paris, Tenn.-Will Paris soon be getting two steakhouses? Both located within a short span of each other on E. Wood Street? Probably not. But if you believe the signs, you might think so. Signs proclaiming that the Old West Steak House will be locating both at the site of the former Lepanto’s Steak House and the former Lalo’s Mexican Restaurant have popped up in recent days. Paris City Manager Kim Foster said that so far, only the former Lepanto’s location has initiated the permitting process for a new steak house. (Shannon McFarlin photos).

 

Yes, It’s Windy Out There

Paris, Tenn.-Strong winds in Paris this afternoon took a toll on a couple of trees at the corner of Lone Oak and Wilson Streets. One lane was blocked for a short time while the trees were removed. (Shannon McFarlin photo).



Info Is Sought On Suspicious Fire

                                                                               (Photo by Chad Lowry).

Paris, Tenn.—The State Bomb and Arson Squad is seeking information to assist with its investigation of the fire that destroyed the former Midway Truck Stop at 11719 Hwy. 641S last Friday. The business currently was called the “Let ‘Er Buck” Saloon and formerly was called the Hollywood Lounge.

According to Henry County Sheriff’s Captain Adam Jenkins, the cause of the fire is being investigated as ‘undetermined’.

Jenkins said anyone who has information or was traveling by there between 9 and 11 p.m. Friday, March 30, and may have seen vehicles or suspicious activity is asked to call the Tennessee Arson Hotline at 1-800-762-3017.

A reward of up to $5,000 is being offered.

Firefighters responded from Springville, Oakland and Mansfield volunteer fire departments. 


Huntingdon Fire & Rescue Honored With Meal

Huntingdon, Tenn.—The Huntingdon Fire & Rescue squad was surprised with a BBQ meal from Mayor Dale Kelley at the squad’s monthly training meeting. Kelley told squad members how much he, the town council and citizens appreciate the work the department does for the town. He also said that many people don't know the extent of how much the department is providing in rescue efforts, not just within the city limits but to anywhere they get called.   

Everyone enjoyed the meal of BBQ, potato salad, baked beans, slaw, chips and chocolate oatmeal cookies. The potato salad, beans, and slaw were prepared by Tresa Smothers, wife of Public Safety Director Walter Smothers.  The chocolate oatmeal cookies are a speciality made by Director Smothers.

After the meal, it was back to business as the squad conducted training on Hazardous Materials Communications.  

Cast-N-Blast Planned This Weekend

 

Paris, Tenn.-The Henry County Carl Perkins Center for the Prevention of Child Abuse has planned its annual fundraiser for Saturday, April 8, at Paris Landing Marina.

Cast-N-Blast is a partnership with the Henry County Sheriff’s Office and includes a bass tournament and turkey blast. Cast-N-Blast will begin at 6 am and registration for the bass Tournament will be taken up until 6am that morning.

There will be a Free Kids Fishing Rodeo and a Youth Turkey Calling Contest. Fishing Demonstrations will be held at 9:30 am and 11:30 am by US Fish and Wildlife Services.

Music by Ervin and Andrea Dutton will begin at noon. Turkey Hunters will check in by 2 pm and announce winners before the Bass weigh in. Fishermen will be out of the water to arrive for weigh in by 4pm. We are in search of Bass Fishermen and Turkey Hunters to register for Cast-N-Blast.

County Carl Perkins Director Carly Wheat said, “We are excited to continue this fundraiser in Henry County.  We are grateful to have this beautiful lake to hold tournaments and involve sportsmen. We aim to get the kids involved in the outdoors.”

The money raised from the Cast-N-Blast Fundraiser stays in Henry County to ensure the continuance of those needed services. “We hope to have a big turnout from the community in supporting a great cause,” she said.

 

Manhole Repair On Mineral Wells Thursday

Paris, Tenn.--The Paris Board of Public Utilities will be repairing a manhole on Mineral Wells at the Russell St.  Intersection on Thursday April 6th.    Traffic will be consolidated to one lane for eastbound traffic in this area.  Russell St. traffic must use Spruce St. as access during this time.  This repair will start Thursday morning and will take most of the day to complete.  Please use caution and follow traffic signage while driving through this area due to machinery and workers present.

  

Today Last Day For Tax Vouchers

Paris, Tenn.—Henry County Trustee Randi French has announced that today is the last day to use Tax Relief Vouchers or apply for the State Tax Relief Program.  If you have any question please call the office at 731-642-6633

 


Tuesday, April 4, 2017


Paris Awarded $$ For Downtown Restrooms

 

Mayor Carlton Gerrell, City Manager Kim Foster, Economic Director Jennifer Morris and City Parks Director Tony Lawrence with state officials in Huntingdon today. (Joel Washburn photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Huntingdon, Tenn.—The city of Paris received a $32,900 grant from the Tennessee Economic Development Department for the installation of restrooms in downtown Paris. The presentation was made today in Huntingdon as part of the Northwest Tennessee Tour by new State Director Bob Rolfe.

Paris Mayor Carlton Gerrell told WENK/WTPR Tuesday night that the new restrooms will be located in the downtown park adjacent to the pavilion. He said the city applied for the monies due to the need for a downtown public restroom to accommodate the crowds that come to Paris for all of the downtown festivals held there.

The restrooms will architecturally match the rest of the park, which is located at the corner of Market and Wood Streets.

“The restrooms will have an automatic lock so that the doors lock at a certain time at night and the doors open again in the morning, to thwart vandalism”, Gerrell said.

While in Huntingdon, Rolfe also presented checks to Benton County and Dyersburg for community projects there.

 

Dr. Norma Gerrell Tapped As Next PSSD Director

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—At a special meeting of the Paris Special Schools District board of education tonight, Dr. Norma Gerrell was chosen unanimously to be the next Director of Schools. Gerrell will be the first female superintendent of Paris Schools in its history.

Gerrell said after the meeting, “I am humbled and honored. Thrilled. Excited.” Gerrell presently is the Supervisor of Instruction and Federal Programs for PSSD. Just prior to that, she had been working at the State Department of Education and the University of Tennessee at Martin.

Gerrell comes to the position of Director of Schools after a wide-ranging career as teacher at Inman School, Principal at Paris Elementary School, Principal at both Cottage Grove and Henry Schools and at the PSSD central office.

The board authorized Board Chair Richard Edwards to begin contract negotiations with Gerrell, with the contract to be voted on officially at the board’s regular April 17 meeting.

Gerrell replaces Mike Brown, who earlier announced he will be retiring effective June 30. Gerrell will begin as superintendent July 1.

At the meeting’s outset, board members quickly decided they did not want to hire the Tennessee School Boards Association (TSBA) to perform a search for the district, especially since it costs from $10,000-$11,000 and since members said they believed a viable candidate was already working in the system.

Board Member Bill Jelks noted, “We’ve seen it work when we’ve promoted from within before. That’s how we hired Mike Brown and he’s done an excellent job for us.”

Board Member Amy Cathey agreed, noting, “Sometimes we think we need to reach out far and wide and that is not always in the best interest of the system or the county. We have excellent people in our school system already.”

“We have a bunch of wonderful administrators here in the Paris school system, but one separates herself with the education that she has and also her time at UTM and the states. She is well-qualified and she has received her Doctorate and taken that extra step to get into administration,” Jelks said.

To Cathey, the prospect of hiring Gerrell for the position “is like a flashing neon sign,” she said. “I just feel it is in the best interests of our school system that we hire Dr. Gerrell.”

Several board members, including Edwards and Jon Davidson, noted that they had received calls recommending Gerrell be hired and the callers were people from both within and outside the system.


BPU Crews Busy All Day

Paris, Tenn.--The Paris Board of Public Utilities crews were busy all Monday, restoring power after strong straight-line winds overnight brought down trees and power poles. They were still at it as the evening wore on, repairing a teetering power pole at the intersection of East Wood and Highland streets. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

 

Allie Jo Shankle Elected VP Of State FFA

henry County FFA members at State Convention. (Photo courtesy of Laura Moss).

Gatlinburg, Tenn.—A long-time member of the Henry County FFA was elected as West Tennessee Vice President during the Tennessee FFA State Convention last week in Gatlinburg.

Allie Jo Shankle of Paris was elected to the new State Officer Team during the 89th annual convention. The other eight officers are: President, Julia Knaggs, Station Camp; Secretary, Erin Bacon, Jefferson County;  Middle Tennessee Vice President, Mary Lane Minatra, Eagleville; East Tennessee Vice President, Kenzie Bastian, David Crockett; Treasurer, Will Gregory, East Robertson; Reporter, Ahmon Watkins, Oakland; Sentinel, Elizabeth Arwood, Daniel Boone.

The interview process began Saturday afternoon and finished Sunday evening. This year, 27 candidates from across Tennessee went through an extensive process consisting of a knowledge exam, letter writing exercise, a leadership interview, agricultural issues interview, and finally, a group interview.

The newly elected officer team will spend the first few months in their respective offices training and preparing for the year ahead. Their first event will be their BLAST OFF training organized by the National FFA Organization. This summer they will lead FFA Camp and participate in various conferences and meetings. The interview process is sponsored by Tennessee Farmers Cooperative and Farm Bureau Insurance of Tennessee.

FFA makes a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth, and career success through agricultural education. Nationally, there are 649,355 FFA members, aged 12-21. The Tennessee FFA Association is comprised of 14,084 members from 214 high school chapters, 7 middle school chapters, and 8 collegiate chapters across the state of Tennessee. To learn more about FFA visit www.tnffa.org.

 


Allie Jo Shankle Elected VP Of State FFA

henry County FFA members at State Convention. (Photo courtesy of Laura Moss).

Gatlinburg, Tenn.—A long-time member of the Henry County FFA was elected as West Tennessee Vice President during the Tennessee FFA State Convention last week in Gatlinburg.

Allie Jo Shankle of Paris was elected to the new State Officer Team during the 89th annual convention. The other eight officers are: President, Julia Knaggs, Station Camp; Secretary, Erin Bacon, Jefferson County;  Middle Tennessee Vice President, Mary Lane Minatra, Eagleville; East Tennessee Vice President, Kenzie Bastian, David Crockett; Treasurer, Will Gregory, East Robertson; Reporter, Ahmon Watkins, Oakland; Sentinel, Elizabeth Arwood, Daniel Boone.

The interview process began Saturday afternoon and finished Sunday evening. This year, 27 candidates from across Tennessee went through an extensive process consisting of a knowledge exam, letter writing exercise, a leadership interview, agricultural issues interview, and finally, a group interview.

The newly elected officer team will spend the first few months in their respective offices training and preparing for the year ahead. Their first event will be their BLAST OFF training organized by the National FFA Organization. This summer they will lead FFA Camp and participate in various conferences and meetings. The interview process is sponsored by Tennessee Farmers Cooperative and Farm Bureau Insurance of Tennessee.

FFA makes a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth, and career success through agricultural education. Nationally, there are 649,355 FFA members, aged 12-21. The Tennessee FFA Association is comprised of 14,084 members from 214 high school chapters, 7 middle school chapters, and 8 collegiate chapters across the state of Tennessee. To learn more about FFA visit www.tnffa.org.

 



Artist Showcase Winners Announced

Martin Paschall with his "Best of Show" art work.


Paris, Tenn.—Local Potter Martin Paschall won “Best in Show” at the 32nd Annual Artist Showcase which opened Sunday at the Lee Academy for the Arts. Paschall won for his piece, “Elegant Ebony Bottle”. He also won First Place for “Split Personality”.

The Showcase is sponsored each year by the Paris-Henry County Arts Council. Twenty-five local artists entered their works in this year’s show, which was judged by Diane Shaw of UT Martin.

The show can be viewed through April 27 at Lee. Hours are Monday and Wednesday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Tuesday and Thursday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 5-8 p.m. and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Other winners are:

Drawing:

1 st Place A Different Point of View by Jane Baars; 2 nd Place A Naughty Child by Tracy Edlin; Honorable Mention Neighborhood Kid by Tracy Edlin.

Fiber Arts:

1 st Place R. Lowe by Judith Putnam 2 nd Place Twistin’ by Kay Richardson Honorable Mention Butterfly by Debbie Knowles.

Mixed Media:

1 st Place Far and Away by Brice Snow 2 nd Place Belief by Dan Knowles Honorable Mention Household by Jenni Carroll.

Pottery & 3-D Art:

1 st Place Split Personality by Martin Paschall 2 nd Place Forest Light by Cat McGavin Honorable Mention Springtime in Paris by Cat McGavin

Oil & Acrylic Painting:

1 st Place Caleb’s Smokey Mtn Honey Hole by Jan Owens 2 nd Place The Turkey Man by Gene Snowden Honorable Mention Still Life by Egan Snow

Photo of Martin Paschall courtesy of Paschall; other photos by Shannon McFarlin

 


Thursday, March 23, 2017


Paris Woman Reported Missing

Paris, Tenn.—The Paris Police Department is seeking the public’s help in locating a missing person.

Savanna Wallace, age 23, has been missing from her home on Fairview Street since Sunday night. Sgt. Jeramye Whitaker said she was last seen in the area of Mineral Wells Ave.

“She may have a small dog with her,” Sgt. Whitaker said. “She has been seen hanging around the Wal-Mart parking lot over the noon hour frequently”.

If she is seen, please contact Lt. Ricky Watson or Sgt. Whitaker at the Paris Police at 642 2424 or 641 1437.


Wal-Mart Robbery Suspects Arrested

Murray, Ky.—Two people have been arrested in the strong-arm robbery and injury of an elderly woman in the Murray Wal-Mart which occurred on Monday. The pair were located in West Des Moines, Iowa.

The main suspect, Allison Hunter, age 29, of Hopkinsville, Ky., was arrested after a similar incident there. Also arrested and believed to be involved with the incident in Murray is Justin Marshall, age 32, of Panama City Beach, Fla.

The charges stemming from the Murray incident are still pending. In Murray, the female suspect knocked an elderly woman down and after a struggle, yanked her purse away.

Murray Police issued surveillance photos of the car in the parking lot to the media after the incident.

The Urbandale Police in Iowa have already charged the pair with second degree robbery and first degree theft after being arrested by the Urbandale Police Department in Iowa. Marshall also was charged with fleeing after running from the police, first in a vehicle, then on foot. The vehicle they were found in was stolen out of Kirksville, Mo.


Downtown Mural Project Ribbon-Cutting Set

Artist Dan Knowles with just-completed last mural. (McFarlin photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The grand opening of the “Windows of the West Alley” will be at 10 a.m. Monday, March 27, in the alley between Market and Fentress Streets in downtown Paris.

Four murals have been completed—along with a fifth self-portrait of the artists welcoming everyone to the alley—as part of the “Back Alley Paris” project. The murals depict historic events and periods in Paris history which include an infamous duel in downtown Paris; Dr. Henrietta Veltman, the first female physician in Paris; and scenes from local jewelry and dry goods stores.

Artists on the project were Dan Knowles and John Monroe and they just completed the last mural Wednesday. Storyboards will be installed today which tell the story behind each mural.

Both Knowles and Monroe will be on hand at the grand opening. The public is invited.

Downtown Paris Association Executive Director Kathy Ray noted this is Phase 3 in the Back Alley Paris Project.  “Back Alley Paris” is a partnership between the City of Paris, Downtown Paris Association, and Robert E. Lee Academy of the Arts. The other two projects are murals on the alley next to the downtown fountain plaza painted by Paris Artists Jane Baars and the Eiffel Tower mural which also is in the alley between Market and Fentress Streets and was prepared by Artist Brenda Kitchens.

All three projects were made possible by grants obtained from the Tennessee Arts Commission.

 

Clerks Cited In Undercover Operation

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—Citations were issued against clerks at three Henry County businesses, citing each with selling beer to an underage customer. The arrests were part of an undercover operation conducted by the Henry County Sheriff’s Office.

Sheriff Monte Belew told WENK/WTPR that a 20-year-old, using his own ID, bought beer at the three businesses even though his ID showed he was underage. “We want to bring attention to curbing underage drinking and make sure our local stores are following the rules,” he said.

The three businesses are: Lakeview Grocery on Hwy. 79N, Paris; Barney’s Stop and Go, Hwy. 641N in Puryear; and T-Bones Tavern on Hwy. 641S, Paris. The clerks cited were: Lorie Thomason, Paris (T-Bones); Kelly Hoffman, Buchanan (Barney’s Stop and Go) and Brenda Williams, Buchanan, (Lakeview Grocery).

 

Employee Charged With Carrying Loaded Weapon

Martin, Tenn.—An employee with a loaded gun was arrested at a Martin business Wednesday night.

Martin Police Captain Phillip Fuqua said Patrolman Trae Vaughn responded to MTD Products on a complaint that one of the workers had a firearm on his person. Upon arrival, Patrolman Vaughn made contact with Tavares Farrington, age 34, of Martin, inside the plant.

Fuqua said further investigation revealed that Farrington did have a loaded .32 caliber handgun concealed in his pants pocket.

Farrington was arrested and charged with unlawful carrying and possession of a weapon. During a search before the arrest, Patrolman Vaughn located approximately 1.3 grams of crack cocaine in Farrington’s pocket. He also was charged with possession with intent to sell.

 

Play To Benefit Office On Aging

Paris, Tenn.—The Henry County Office on Aging is sponsoring a live stage performance called “Dearly Departed” to be presented at 7 p.m. Friday, March 24, at the Krider Performing Arts Center on Volunteer Drive in Paris. Tickets are $10 per person. All proceeds go to the Henry County Office on Aging.

 

Welcome Home Vietnam Vets Event Set

Paris, Tenn.—A ‘Welcome Home, Vietnam Veterans’ event will be held Saturday, March 25, at the Henry County Fairgrounds. A meet and greet period will be held from 3-5 p.m. followed by a free dinner served for Vietnam Veterans and their spouses from 5-7 p.m.

Guest speakers are Dr. Chester Harrison, A.J. Perrone, and Rex McBee. The Ray Lewis Band will perform at 7 p.m. The event is sponsored by local veterans’ organizations.

 


Thursday, March 16, 2017



Grove Student Wins National Contest

From left, Grove Vice Principal Tim Mason, Alex Conley of AMVETS, Grandmother Louise Brown, Tianna McCutcheon, Grandmother Pearline Travis; Mother Tiffany McCutcheon, AMVETS Rep Tony VanDyke of Paris, and Grove Principal Sam Tharpe. (Grove School photo).

Paris, Tenn—A Henry County student has won the AMVETS National Americanism Contest and received an all-expenses-paid trip to Valley Forge, along with cash prizes.

Tianna McCutcheon, student at Grove School, was announced as the winner at a ceremony held at the AMVETS State Executive Committee meeting held at Paris Landing State Park. McCutcheon’s mother is Tiffany McCutcheon. She was there at the ceremony along with grandmothers Louise Brown and Pearline Travis.

Alex Conley from AMVETS made the presentation. McCutcheon won the trip to the Freedom Foundation at Valley Forge in November, which is a three-day history event.

Local students also were named as State winners: Molly Gillespie, first grader at Rhea School, won first place; Cole Edwards, Lakewood fourth grader, first place; Dinah Winders, seventh grade, second place; McCutcheon also won first place at the 9th grade level; Clay Durham, 11th grade, first place; Emily Hudgins, 11th grade, second place.


Paris Man Held On Rape Charge

Paris, Tenn.—A Paris man is being held in the Henry County Jail on $25,000 bond after his arrest for rape.

Michael Anthony Littleton, age 40, of 1050 Vance St., was arrested at a Reynolds St. residence Wednesday.

According to the Paris Police report, the rape reportedly occurred Tuesday afternoon after the victim and Littleton had been arguing throughout the day.

Littleton told officers that the encounter had been consensual. He is to appear in General Sessions Court today.

 

Dempsey Office Fire Investigated As Arson

Dresden, Tenn.—Dresden Police are investigating the possible arson of Attorney Ben Dempsey’s Dresden office Wednesday. Dempsey also has an office in Paris.

A projectile containing a flammable liquid was reportedly thrown through the front window of the office and then burst into flames. Firefighters were able to contain the fire and the building was not a total loss.

Dempsey told WBBJ-TV that cases his office has been involved in recently may have spurred the attack. He said investigators do have a suspect in mind.

Dempsey was indicted last year and charged with sexual battery by a McKenzie woman. Dempsey said he does not believe that case had anything to do with the arson. He also said none of the office’s files were lost in the fire.


Learning About Wild Turkeys

                                           (Photo by Patti DePriest).

Springville, Tenn.--Surely you have seen them walking across the road, or in a nearby field, maybe even flying down from a tree roost. The wild turkey is a fairly common sight in Tennessee, but how much do you know about this unique looking bird? What happened to the turkey and why did they make such a dramatic comeback?

A program on “The Amazing Wild Turkey” will be presented from 1-3 p.m. Saturday, March 18th at the Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center located at 1371 Wildlife Drive in Springville. The event is free.

Laura French will be the speaker. Participants will get practical experience looking for and reading turkey sign as well as deciphering the different communication sounds turkeys make.  For those getting ready for turkey season, or families just wanting to know more about the wild turkey, this program will be very informative and interactive.

  

The refuge visitor center is always open Monday - Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Entry to the event and to the visitor center is free. For more information about this event or the Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge please call 731-642-2091.

 

Carroll Co. Commission To Meet Nine Times A Year

Huntingdon, Tenn.—The Carroll County Commissioners have approved a schedule that includes nine meetings a year instead of the current 11.

At its regular meeting Monday, commissioners voted to eliminate the February and July meetings. The commission’s annual schedule had already eliminated the December meeting.

Commissioners said it was a cost-saving measure, noting that with 21 county commissioners, each meeting costs around $2,100, with an extra $250 to set the agenda for the Resolutions Committee.

Each commissioner receives $100 for attending each regular meeting and $50 for the committee meetings.

The measure was passed 18-2, with Joey Darnall and Ronnie Owen voting against it. Darnall had attempted to introduce a motion to continue with 11 monthly meetings while reducing the pay of commissioners by one-half. His motion died for lack of a second.

 

Goodwill Wedding Gala Set Saturday

Madison, Tenn.--More than 500 wedding dresses and 400 bridesmaid gowns will be sold at bargain prices during the Goodwill Wedding Gala from 6 a.m.-10 a.m. on Saturday, March 18, at the Rivergate Goodwill store, 2101 Gallatin Pike North in Madison.

Prices for wedding gowns will range from $99 to $399. Bridesmaid dresses will be $19.99-$49.99. Brand names such as Monique Lhuillier, Tomasina and Amsale, and popular styles in short and long lengths and many colors and sizes, will be available. Local bridal stores donated much of the merchandise.

“This sale is a once-a-year chance for brides-to-be and bridesmaids to find the dress of their dreams at an amazing price,” said Goodwill Retail District Manager Jennifer Martin.

“Goodwill’s entire stock of these dresses will be on the sales floor from the start of the sale, so shoppers should come early.”

Dresses, as well as jewelry and accessories, will be found in a featured section at the front of the store. Wedding-related vendors, such as salons, venue providers, photographers and caterers will also be on hand. There will also be refreshments and giveaways.

Shoppers can gain early entrance to the sale, to browse and purchase dresses as much as an hour before the general public, by making a $25 donation at the door. These VIP passes can be obtained from 5-6 a.m.

The Rivergate Goodwill store is open 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday and noon-6 p.m. Sunday. The phone number is (615) 859-4473.

 



Wednesday, March 15, 2017



Weather Complicates UC Band Trip To NYC

Photo: Band members and chaperones on the way to the airport.

 

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director


Union City, Tenn.—Weather conditions on the East Coast have caused difficulties for the Union City Band, which is set to perform at the New York City St. Patrick’s Day parade on Friday.


Part of the band is now in NYC, while the rest are still awaiting a flight. Most flights were cancelled over two days because of blizzard conditions.


The flight cancellations prompted high school staff to change plans in order to get everyone safely to NYC. Three buses carrying band members, chaperones and staff drove to Atlanta to take off from that airport, while one bus drove to the Nashville airport.


According to a spokesperson at Union City High School this morning, one flight from Atlanta got out and one flight from Nashville got out, leaving one busload still waiting on a flight to NYC today.


The NYC St. Patrick’s Day parade is the oldest parade in the U.S. The first one was held March 17, 1762.


The trip to NYC for the parade is part of the Union City Band’s quadrennial music and culture tour.

 

Rhea Students Think Positive With Bucket Wall

Photo: Principal Sandra Paschall with Student Kainon Deberry. (McFarlin photo).

Paris, Tenn.— Rhea School in Paris has found a unique way to share positive thoughts among students and staff with the creation of a “Bucket Wall” located on one of the main hallways in the school.

The wall is decorated with numerous tiny buckets, as well as pens and notepaper, and positive messages such as “Be Kind”, “Care” and “Share”. Principal Sandra Paschall said students are encouraged to write messages to each other on the wall. “When they have a nice message you want to share with one of your fellow students, or even a teacher, they write it on a piece of paper with the person’s name on it and put them in the buckets,” Paschall said. “They seem to really like it and there are messages in the buckets every day.”

Paschall said she got the idea from a project she did at the first of the year as she came to the school as a new principal. “I gave little buckets to all the staff members, with a little poem in them, just as a way to get to know everybody,” she said. “And I thought maybe we could expand that for the kids, too.”


Elizondo Named Kiwanian Of Year

Paris, Tenn.-Paris Police Chief Chuck Elizondo was named Kiwanian of the Year at the Club’s annual Valentine’s banquet in February. It is awarded each year to a Kiwanian who goes above and beyond in the club and in the community. In photo, Elizondo receives the award from Kate Rhodes, who was Kiwanian of the Year last year. (Photo by Jamie Orr).

 

Weakley Co. Sheriff Office Warns Of Scam

Dresden, Tenn.—The Weakley County Sheriff’s Office is alerting the public to a scam that cost an elderly resident some $4,500.

Captain Randall McGowan said the victim thought he had won a car and millions of dollars from Publishers’ Clearinghouse. McGowan said the caller convinced him he needed to send money to cover the taxes on the car.

The victim wired the money using Western Union, mailing it to a Georgia address. McGowan said the names the scammers use are real people—in this case they were a Major League Baseball player and a published author. The telephone number used by the scammer was from Jamaica.

He said the scammer even convinced the victim to keep it a secret from police and family.

The Weakley County Sheriff’s Office is reminding the public to be careful when they are asked to send money in exchange for a prize. Real contests don’t require that and once the money has been sent, it most likely will never be recovered.

Merison’s 5th Annual Home Show This Weekend

Paris, Tenn.--Merison’s Furniture will host its 5th annual shopping event, the Merison’s Home Show 2017, planned from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Friday, March 17, and 9 a.m.-3 p.m. March 18 at the Paris Convention Center, 1510 East Wood St., Paris, TN. This year’s theme is “Now Trending: All the latest in home furnishings.” Admission is free.

More than 20 vendors will set up booths to sell their wares, and Merison’s will showcase the latest trends in home furnishings, including bedroom groups, living room groups, dining groups, home accessories, rugs, and clearance items. Home Show specials are good these two days only, so don’t miss out!

Vendors include: Roberts & Todd Security, Tupperware, Juice Plus Tower Garden, LuLaRoe Fashions, Perfectly Posh, Lura Lees Gift Shoppe of Paris, Pampered Chef, Landmark Realty, Park Lane Jewelry, The Silver Chics, SB Bands, Kinfolk Boutique and Polka Dots & Paislees, Casey’s Snaps, Vinyl Creations, Thirty-One, Eagle Buildings, Street Dynamics and Trinity United Methodist Church which will provide the concessions.

Merison’s general manager Meredith Boyd Leathers said giveaways include more than $5,000 in furniture, including $3,000 in Ashley Furniture (three prizes: $1,500, $1,000, & $500 in furniture), a Bassett Norwood reclining sofa valued at $1,500, 2 Tempur-Pedic queen pillows, an 18 cubic foot Amana refrigerator, a $50 spa certificate and more! Each vendor also will give away a door prize valued at $25 throughout the day.

Ashley, Bassett, Tempur-Pedic, Sealy company representatives will be on site to answer questions about their brands, including quality, materials, price, warranty and more.

Local Merison’s design consultant, Cindy Lowe, will also be on site to offer suggestions about color, texture, and design for your rooms, large or small.

For more information, visit www.merisons.com and follow the links to merisonshomeshow.com.

 

2017 Runway For Cure Is Success

Paris, Tenn.-The 6th Annual Runway for a Cure event held Friday night before cold weather set into our area was a success.   Runway Spokesperson Dana Allen said Blogger and Author Susannah Lewis was fantastic as Guest Emcee.  “Many in attendance were there just to see her and she was truly touched by the warm response she received here in Paris,” she said.

Betty Jane Strutton served as this year's Honorary Co-Chair.  She's a four-time cancer survivor, a courageous lady and such an inspiration, Allen said.  A few donations are still coming in, however $2700 was raised for Relay for Life.

“The Runway for a Cure Committee would like to thank the boutiques, sponsors, donors and vendors.  Their contributions and continued support ensure the success of this event each year.  Another huge thank you goes out to the many volunteers including student volunteers for their time and energy,” she said.

 


Saturday, March 18, 2017


Irish Eyes Smiling On Erin For Grand Parade

Erin Mayor Paul Bailey throws hats to the crowd.


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Erin, Tenn.—Irish eyes were certainly smiling on the community of Erin for the annual Irish Celebration Grand Parade Saturday. With clear skies and warm temperatures, a huge crowd was on hand for the parade, with Grand Marshal Dave Nichols, former Channel 5 Weatherman; Junior Grand Marshal Izzy Lamberth and Lord High Mayor Tim Clegherns.

The annual Irish Day Celebration is a week-long affair, with a carnival, community dinners, community breakfasts, arts and crafts vendors and plenty of green decorating Erin, which is billed as “A Bit Of Ireland In Tennessee”.

The grand parade was preceded with the Leprechaun Parade, in which the kids get to strut their stuff. Erin Mayor Paul Bailey threw out green hats from his float. Also on the mayor’s float was a couple from Ireland who have made five trips now to the Erin celebration and were honored by the community.

Former Nashville Mayor Karl Dean marched in the parade, while State Rep. Jay Reedy was also on hand with other area politicos. The 101st Airborne Division band also marched in the parade.

The Southernaire Restaurant won the Irish Beautification Contest.

The Irish Day Celebration is organized each year by the Houston County Area Chamber of Commerce.

 

These cousins had their bags ready to catch all the candy they could. They are the great-granddaughters of Margaret Simpson.

Benton Co. Sports Hall Of Fame Class Of 2017  

Camden, Tenn.-The Benton County Sports Hall of Fame “Class of 2017” has been announced by Hall of Fame Committee Chair David Markham. Seven persons have been selected for this year’s class and they represent a wide range of local sports.

Members to be inducted are: Sam Lowery, Camden, 1949-53, football; Keith Peach, Big Sandy, 1989-93, basketball and baseball; Willard Stokes, Holladay, 1954, basketball; Jeff Rowland, Camden, 1991-1993, baseball, football and basketball; Jeff Tharpe, Camden, 1977-80, football; Harriett Chester, Camden, 1968, basketball, and Bobby “Flash” Melton of Camden of Catfish Radio in Benton County.

The induction banquet will be held Saturday, May 20, at Lakeshore Camp in Eva. Tickets are $25 and will be available in April. Guest Speaker is Dale Kelley, Athletic Director of Bethel University and Mayor of Huntingdon.


BPU To Flush Hydrants Next Week

Paris, Tenn.--The Paris Board of Public Utilities will be flushing fire hydrants during the week of March 20th.  BPU customers could possibly experience air in water lines or discoloration in the water.  Please check for discoloration of water prior to doing laundry.  If these conditions occur, run water through a faucet for several minutes.  The water should return to normal in a short amount of time.  If problems continue, please feel free to contact Tony Brown at 642-1322, ext. 115. 

 


Friday, March 17, 2017


J.C. Penney Store In UC To Close

Union City, Tenn.—The J.C. Penney Store in Union City is among 138 stores that are set to close in the next few months due to slow sales. The other two stores are at Greeneville Commons in Greeneville and Knoxville Center in Knoxville. The Union City store is located in the County Market Place.

About 5,000 employees will be losing their jobs across the country as a result of the closures. J.C. Penney announced it would offer employees “separation benefits”, including assistance getting other jobs.

The closures are a result of the impact on Penney’s brick and mortar stores by online shopping.


Another Elderly Victim Loses Money To Scam

Dresden, Tenn.-Another scam has resulted in an elderly Weakley County woman losing a great deal of money—this time, the elderly victim lost $1,800.

Weakley County Sheriff’s Captain Randall McGowan said the woman was contacted by a man claiming to be Christian Grant and that he was involved in the legal system in Mexico. He convinced the woman that her grandson had been arrested in Mexico and the money was needed for his legal defense.

The victim was instructed to put $450 cash on four different Wal-Mart gift cards, which she did. She gave the man the numbers off the back of the cards. She became suspicious when they called back the next day seeking more money. According to McGowan, the man even had a recording of her grandson speaking.

The victim then checked with her grandson, who lives in another state, and he is fine.

A check of the area code from which the calls were made showed it to be Cambodia. McGowan said the sheriff’s office is again urging people to never send money to someone you don’t know. ‘You will never have to send money to get money. The IRS will not call you. Publisher’s Clearinghouse will not call you. Never give your birthday or Social Security number to someone you don’t know. If you suspect an attempted scam, call local law enforcement before you do anything. Once you send the money, it is gone for good.”


UC Band Making Most Of NYC Visit

Cake presented to Director John Easley by the UCHS Band. (UC Band photo).


New York City—The Union City High School Band is pumped up and ready to march in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade this afternoon and has been making the most of its trip to the Big Apple.

With long-time Band Director John Easley retiring, the band presented him with a cake that looks like the Union City Band’s drums. Easley retires after 31 years in the position and told his band students that his heart will always beat in time with the Purple People.

Band members Thursday visited the Statue of Liberty and saw the Broadway productions of Wicked and Phantom of the Opera. After this afternoon’s parade, the band will visit the Empire State Building.



State FFA Officers Visit Local Area

State FFA Officials at the McWherter Museum in Dresden. (FFA photos).

Paris, Martin and Dresden—  The Tennessee Future Farmers of America State Officer team spent a week in the local area on the 2017 Goodwill Tour, visiting the FFA programs in Paris, Martin and Dresden. The tour is a time honored tradition in Tennessee, in which State Officers travel statewide promoting the agricultural youth organization, Tennessee FFA. During the week, State Officers visited sponsors, universities, and agribusinesses across Tennessee.

Starting their West Tennessee journey in Memphis, the State Officers enjoyed a light breakfast and visit with Agricenter International employees and Board members.  

After lunch, the State Officers visited the Governor Ned R. McWherter Library in Dresden, Tennessee. The state officers were able to learn more about Governor McWherter’s experience and appreciation for FFA along with his support of agriculture in Tennessee.  The night ended with an FFA Day banquet at the University of Tennessee at Martin. State Officers met with faculty, guests and FFA chapters from across West Tennessee.

The second and final day in West Tennessee began at the Paris FFA Chapter. Members and FFA state officers enjoyed breakfast and learned more about the storied history of the Paris FFA chapter. In addition, Mark McBride, Paris FFA Alum, spoke about the release of the Tennessee FFA History book.

The Goodwill Tour was sponsored by the Tennessee Farmers Cooperative, Catesa Farms owned by George McDonald, and the Ned R. McWherter Foundation.

FFA makes a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth, and career success through agricultural education. Nationally, there are 649,355 FFA members, aged 12-21. The Tennessee FFA Association is comprised of 14,084 members from 214 high school chapters, 7 middle school chapters, and 8 collegiate chapters across the state of Tennessee. To learn more about FFA visit www.tnffa.org.

 

FFA officials at Henry County High School.

Keep On Movin’ Over Spring Break

Paris, Tenn.—Get your exercise and work on your moves over Spring Break as Dancing Generation Studio will join the KPAC KIXX to teach hip hop. Classes are 10:30 a.m. to noon Monday, March 20, to Friday, March 24. There will be a free, short public performance for parents, family and friends at noon Friday, March 24. Class fee is $30 and includes a performance t-shirt. Register soon. Class limited to 25 students. Email kriderpac@gmail.com or call 731 707 3374 if you want to participate.

 



Saturday, March 18, 2017


Irish Eyes Smiling On Erin For Grand Parade

Erin Mayor Paul Bailey throws hats to the crowd.


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Erin, Tenn.—Irish eyes were certainly smiling on the community of Erin for the annual Irish Celebration Grand Parade Saturday. With clear skies and warm temperatures, a huge crowd was on hand for the parade, with Grand Marshal Dave Nichols, former Channel 5 Weatherman; Junior Grand Marshal Izzy Lamberth and Lord High Mayor Tim Clegherns.

The annual Irish Day Celebration is a week-long affair, with a carnival, community dinners, community breakfasts, arts and crafts vendors and plenty of green decorating Erin, which is billed as “A Bit Of Ireland In Tennessee”.

The grand parade was preceded with the Leprechaun Parade, in which the kids get to strut their stuff. Erin Mayor Paul Bailey threw out green hats from his float. Also on the mayor’s float was a couple from Ireland who have made five trips now to the Erin celebration and were honored by the community.

Former Nashville Mayor Karl Dean marched in the parade, while State Rep. Jay Reedy was also on hand with other area politicos. The 101st Airborne Division band also marched in the parade.

The Southernaire Restaurant won the Irish Beautification Contest.

The Irish Day Celebration is organized each year by the Houston County Area Chamber of Commerce.

 

These cousins had their bags ready to catch all the candy they could. They are the great-granddaughters of Margaret Simpson.

Benton Co. Sports Hall Of Fame Class Of 2017  

Camden, Tenn.-The Benton County Sports Hall of Fame “Class of 2017” has been announced by Hall of Fame Committee Chair David Markham. Seven persons have been selected for this year’s class and they represent a wide range of local sports.

Members to be inducted are: Sam Lowery, Camden, 1949-53, football; Keith Peach, Big Sandy, 1989-93, basketball and baseball; Willard Stokes, Holladay, 1954, basketball; Jeff Rowland, Camden, 1991-1993, baseball, football and basketball; Jeff Tharpe, Camden, 1977-80, football; Harriett Chester, Camden, 1968, basketball, and Bobby “Flash” Melton of Camden of Catfish Radio in Benton County.

The induction banquet will be held Saturday, May 20, at Lakeshore Camp in Eva. Tickets are $25 and will be available in April. Guest Speaker is Dale Kelley, Athletic Director of Bethel University and Mayor of Huntingdon.


BPU To Flush Hydrants Next Week

Paris, Tenn.--The Paris Board of Public Utilities will be flushing fire hydrants during the week of March 20th.  BPU customers could possibly experience air in water lines or discoloration in the water.  Please check for discoloration of water prior to doing laundry.  If these conditions occur, run water through a faucet for several minutes.  The water should return to normal in a short amount of time.  If problems continue, please feel free to contact Tony Brown at 642-1322, ext. 115. 

 


Friday, March 17, 2017


J.C. Penney Store In UC To Close

Union City, Tenn.—The J.C. Penney Store in Union City is among 138 stores that are set to close in the next few months due to slow sales. The other two stores are at Greeneville Commons in Greeneville and Knoxville Center in Knoxville. The Union City store is located in the County Market Place.

About 5,000 employees will be losing their jobs across the country as a result of the closures. J.C. Penney announced it would offer employees “separation benefits”, including assistance getting other jobs.

The closures are a result of the impact on Penney’s brick and mortar stores by online shopping.


Another Elderly Victim Loses Money To Scam

Dresden, Tenn.-Another scam has resulted in an elderly Weakley County woman losing a great deal of money—this time, the elderly victim lost $1,800.

Weakley County Sheriff’s Captain Randall McGowan said the woman was contacted by a man claiming to be Christian Grant and that he was involved in the legal system in Mexico. He convinced the woman that her grandson had been arrested in Mexico and the money was needed for his legal defense.

The victim was instructed to put $450 cash on four different Wal-Mart gift cards, which she did. She gave the man the numbers off the back of the cards. She became suspicious when they called back the next day seeking more money. According to McGowan, the man even had a recording of her grandson speaking.

The victim then checked with her grandson, who lives in another state, and he is fine.

A check of the area code from which the calls were made showed it to be Cambodia. McGowan said the sheriff’s office is again urging people to never send money to someone you don’t know. ‘You will never have to send money to get money. The IRS will not call you. Publisher’s Clearinghouse will not call you. Never give your birthday or Social Security number to someone you don’t know. If you suspect an attempted scam, call local law enforcement before you do anything. Once you send the money, it is gone for good.”


UC Band Making Most Of NYC Visit

Cake presented to Director John Easley by the UCHS Band. (UC Band photo).


New York City—The Union City High School Band is pumped up and ready to march in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade this afternoon and has been making the most of its trip to the Big Apple.

With long-time Band Director John Easley retiring, the band presented him with a cake that looks like the Union City Band’s drums. Easley retires after 31 years in the position and told his band students that his heart will always beat in time with the Purple People.

Band members Thursday visited the Statue of Liberty and saw the Broadway productions of Wicked and Phantom of the Opera. After this afternoon’s parade, the band will visit the Empire State Building.



State FFA Officers Visit Local Area

State FFA Officials at the McWherter Museum in Dresden. (FFA photos).

Paris, Martin and Dresden—  The Tennessee Future Farmers of America State Officer team spent a week in the local area on the 2017 Goodwill Tour, visiting the FFA programs in Paris, Martin and Dresden. The tour is a time honored tradition in Tennessee, in which State Officers travel statewide promoting the agricultural youth organization, Tennessee FFA. During the week, State Officers visited sponsors, universities, and agribusinesses across Tennessee.

Starting their West Tennessee journey in Memphis, the State Officers enjoyed a light breakfast and visit with Agricenter International employees and Board members.  

After lunch, the State Officers visited the Governor Ned R. McWherter Library in Dresden, Tennessee. The state officers were able to learn more about Governor McWherter’s experience and appreciation for FFA along with his support of agriculture in Tennessee.  The night ended with an FFA Day banquet at the University of Tennessee at Martin. State Officers met with faculty, guests and FFA chapters from across West Tennessee.

The second and final day in West Tennessee began at the Paris FFA Chapter. Members and FFA state officers enjoyed breakfast and learned more about the storied history of the Paris FFA chapter. In addition, Mark McBride, Paris FFA Alum, spoke about the release of the Tennessee FFA History book.

The Goodwill Tour was sponsored by the Tennessee Farmers Cooperative, Catesa Farms owned by George McDonald, and the Ned R. McWherter Foundation.

FFA makes a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth, and career success through agricultural education. Nationally, there are 649,355 FFA members, aged 12-21. The Tennessee FFA Association is comprised of 14,084 members from 214 high school chapters, 7 middle school chapters, and 8 collegiate chapters across the state of Tennessee. To learn more about FFA visit www.tnffa.org.

 

FFA officials at Henry County High School.

Keep On Movin’ Over Spring Break

Paris, Tenn.—Get your exercise and work on your moves over Spring Break as Dancing Generation Studio will join the KPAC KIXX to teach hip hop. Classes are 10:30 a.m. to noon Monday, March 20, to Friday, March 24. There will be a free, short public performance for parents, family and friends at noon Friday, March 24. Class fee is $30 and includes a performance t-shirt. Register soon. Class limited to 25 students. Email kriderpac@gmail.com or call 731 707 3374 if you want to participate.

 



Clean Sweep Day On Wynn Street Set For Saturday

 

Paris, Tenn.--The first Preserve Paris event for 2017 will be a Clean Sweep Day in the Wynn Street Neighborhood. 

This event will begin at 9 a.m. Saturday, April 8 in the Trinity Funeral Home parking lot.  Lunch will be served to the volunteers participating that day.  

Clean Sweep Day is an event where community volunteers and neighbors will converge on the neighborhood to assist residents with trash removal and, if feasible, some yard work.  Dumpster buggies will be placed throughout the neighborhood for use this day as well as throughout the weekend. 

Beginning at noon on Saturday, any unwanted items can be placed at the curb and can be taken by anyone that wants them.  ONLY ITEMS ON THE CURB MAY BE TAKEN, anyone picking up reuse items must not pick up anything past the curb. 

On Monday, April 10, City of Paris Public Works employees will be coming through the neighborhood to collect the buggies and remove anything left on the curbs.

Volunteers are invited to assist in the Clean Sweep Day.  If you plan to participate please wear appropriate shoes and gloves for outdoor work, lunch will be served following the clean up. If you have questions please call City Hall at 641-1402 or email: mstancook@cityofparistn.gov.

 

FFA Breakfast, Greenhouse Sale Set

Union City, Tenn.—The Obion County Central FFA greenhouse opening sale and pancake breakfast will be held Saturday, April 8.

The pancake breakfast is from 7-11 a.m. with all you can eat pancakes (includes sausages and drink) for $7.

The greenhouse sale will be held from 8 a.m. to noon and the greenhouse is full, with flowers, hanging baskets, vegetable plants and strawberries all for sale.

 

“A Taste Of Quinn” Is Saturday

Paris, Tenn.—The Quinn Chapel AME Church will be hosting “A Taste of Quinn” beginning at 11 a.m. Saturday, April 8, at the Central School Building. It will feature “A Taste Of African-American Cuisine”.

Donation $8 and children under five free.

 

Ahoy Mates! Cardboard Regatta Is Near

Union City, Tenn.--It's closer than you may think: the 4th Annual Cardboard Boat Regatta at Discovery Park of America! This year's race is on May 13th, and we are gearing up for the FREE interest meeting on Tuesday, April 4th, at 5:30 for those who may need some pointers from the Commodore.

Here are the details:
Interest Meeting will be at 5:30 on Tuesday, April 4th in the LEC Room

Pointers and guidelines will be discussed at the meeting.
You can pick up a registration packet at the meeting.

The Cardboard Boat Regatta is a fun time for everyone. There will be awards given to the winners, and then the specialty awards will be given to the team with the most spirit, the most spectacular sinking, and the most creative boat.

If you have questions, please call 731-885-5455 and ask for events, or email ljones@discoveryparkofamerica.com

 

HC Jazz Ensemble Earns Superior


Murray, Ky.--The Henry County High School Jazz Ensemble and Paris-Henry County Middle School Jazz Ensemble competed this past weekend at the Murray State Aebersold Jazz Festival in Murray, KY.

The HCHS Jazz Ensemble earned a Superior Rating from the adjudication panel which is the highest rating an ensemble can achieve. The Middle School Jazz Ensemble earned an Excellent rating from the adjudication panel and was the only Middle School ensemble. The students had the opportunity to work with renowned jazz educations and musicians.

 

This Week’s Discovery Park Activities


Union City, Tenn.—This week will find plenty of activities at Discovery Park of America.

On Thursday, Libation Station reopens for the season, from 5:30-9 p.m.; Star Gazing with Dr. Lionel Crews is from 8-9 p.m. Friday at the Great Lawn. On Saturday, Kids’ Create will be from 8:30-10 a.m. and a Family Education Series program on baseball will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.


Blood Mobile In Paris Thursday


Paris, Tenn.--The Lifeline Blood Drive will be in Paris from noon to 6 p.m. Thursday, April 6 at First United Methodist Church.

There is an urgent need for ALL TYPES OF BLOOD as well as increased participation.  Due to the recent flu and other sicknesses, blood donations have been low for us for the past three months. 


Monday, April 3, 2017


Helping Hand Checks Distributed To Local Groups

Helping Hand Treasurer Susan Bell and Secretary Mary Kate Ridgeway talk things over with Brittney Green of Easton's Angels and Reggie Caldwell of the Office on Aging. (McFarlin photo).


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The annual Helping Hand meeting is always a happy time, with a room full of organizations receiving checks. This year, it was even more so with a record $344,673 distributed to local non-profit organizations.


The annual meeting was held Monday night at the Tennessee College of Applied Technology (TCAT) in Paris and representatives of 87 local organizations were on hand to receive their checks, representing categories including health, education, senior citizens, community improvement, safety, emergency funds, fire departments, and youth.


Each year, the Helping Hand Radio Auction is held from January through February and is broadcast daily on WTPR and its sister station.


The top five organizations raising the most money this year were: First United Methodist Church, $29,845; First Baptist Church, $29,129; Tennessee Valley Community Church, $21,662; Educators, $16,736; and Security Bank and Trust, $15,195.


The top five communities raising the most money were: Pleasant Hill, $17,241; Cottage Grove, $13,073; Whitlock, $7,301; Clifty community, $5,394; and VanDyke/Routon/Springhill, $5,270.


The 2017 Helping Hand Radio Auction this year raised a record $353,662, and Treasurer Susan Bell said, “It was a different kind of year in a lot of ways. It was the warmest year we’ve ever had. We had a lot of shorts and flip flops this year. Lightning hit the WTPR transmitter and we had to change radio stations for a few days, but we just kept right on. And we had the biggest last day ever—and I hope it’s the last time we have that—with over 300 items on the last day.”


The Auction also had more silent auctions than ever before and with those being held on the same days as the regular auctions, “we were slammed a lot of days. And we only misplaced three items all year and that’s not bad at all,” Bell said.


And, best of all, she said: There were no returned checks at all this year for items purchased during the auction. 


“But we had a great year and the best thing was that we raised $353,653,” Bell said.
Bell, along with Helping Hand President Wendy Barnhart, distributed the checks.

Helping Hand President Wendy Barnhart hands a check to Linley White of REAL Hope. (McFarlin photo).


McKenzie Man Nabbed For Series Of Break-Ins

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

McKenzie, Tenn.—A McKenzie man was arrested for a series of break-ins and burglaries by officers with the Weakley, Carroll and Henderson County sheriff’s offices and the McKenzie Police following a search of his home.

Jeremy Dewayne Willis, age 47, is charged with three counts of aggravated burglary and three counts of theft over $1000 for residential break-ins he committed in Weakley Co. and break-ins in Henderson Co. Willis presently is in the Henderson Co. Jail and will be facing charges in other counties in West Tennessee.

The officers executed a search warrant at his home at #7 Florida Court in McKenzie. Among the homes he is believed to have broken into is one on Liberty Road in Weakley Co. and another in Dresden, which he broke into twice.

 

Theft Suspect On The Run

Dresden, Tenn.—Weakley County Sheriff’s Investigators have drawn arrest warrants for Darrin Ray Walton, age 40, in connection with the theft of a pickup truck from the Dukedom/Latham area and for the break-in and theft of over $25,000 worth of items from several hunting cabins located in the northeast part of Weakley Co.

Stolen items include television sets, bed linens, food, a four-wheeler and a tractor.

Walton is a former resident of Weakley Co., but he is on the run and may be in Weakley, Montgomery or Dickson Counties.

His co-defendant, Amanda Nicole Perry, age 29, of Montgomery Co., is presently incarcerated in the Montgomery Co. Jail.

If anyone knows Walton’s location, call the Weakley Co. Sheriff’s Office at 731 364 5454.



Strong Winds Tear Through Paris, Henry County

The Wallin Hardware building was damaged by strong winds in downtown Paris. (McFarlin photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The strong winds that tore through Paris and Henry County overnight caused plenty of damage with huge trees and power lines down, causing electrical outages to some 3,000 residences. Henry County Schools are closed today due to the proliferation of downed trees and power lines.

Henry County Emergency Management Agency Director Ron Watkins estimated the winds at 50-60 mph and said, “It’s amazing we don’t have more damage.”

Paris Board of Public Utilities (BPU) General Manager Terry Wimberley said 750 residences are still without power this morning.

Watkins said the National Weather Service’s wind advisory was not issued until after the wind had begun hitting Henry County. “We had no advance notice of that at all. The wind advisory said the winds would be 50 mph, but, man, I’d say they were at least 50-60 mph going through here.”

All of the BPU employees were brought in to fix the power lines, Wimberley said, “and the Benton Co. and Lexington utility companies are coming to help us, so that will speed things up a lot.”

Wimberley said, “We have 33 different, separate outages to repair. Some people will be without power for a while yet today.” The power outages occurred in Paris and many in Henry. “The northern part of the county seems to have been spared,” Wimberley said.

The height of the wind storm occurred around 12:30-1:30 a.m. and caused trees, poles and limbs down all over. A section of Blythe Street was still closed this morning due to a tree across the road, decades-old huge trees are down on Dunlap Street, Highland Street, East Wood Street, India Road and numerous other locations.

The marquee at the Wallin Hardware Building on Market Street in downtown Paris is torn up. The Henry County Sheriff’s Office was at the scene of a shed blown over on Joy Cove around 9 a.m. today.

There are no reports of injuries from any of the local law enforcement agencies.

 

Huge trees are down at 404 and 406 Dunlap Streets. (McFarlin photo)

 

Trees were down at 114 and 116 Highland Street. (McFarlin photo).

Heavy damage reported to the property at 1700 India Rd. (Caleb Murnane photo).

Damage to a building near the Henry County Fairgrounds. (Kasey Fitzsimmons photo).

Ogburn Street House Ransacked

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—Paris Police are investigating a burglary at 308 Ogburn St. Sunday afternoon that left the residence ransacked.

The residents of the house said they left their doors locked when they left the house around 4 p.m. and when they returned around 8 p.m., the door was unlocked and the house ransacked. They said it also appeared their dogs had been hit.

They reported several pieces of jewelry stolen.



Hoofbeats Benefit Raises $10,172

Cottage Grove, Tenn.-A whopping $10,172 was raised Saturday night for the Hoofbeats of Hope program during a benefit dinner and auction held at the Henry County Fairgrounds. A large crowd of around 200 people attended the event, which raised money for the therapeutic riding facility located near Cottage Grove.

Hoofbeats Officer Jan Foy said, “We made enough to keep the horses in feed for a while! It is very humbling for us all to see the support shown to our little program. What a caring and giving community we call home.”

The auction at the event was conducted by Junior Staggs  and Doug Taylor. Dozens of items were donated for the auction and included everything from free St. Louis Cardinals’ tickets to products donated by local businesses and homemade crafts.

 

Webb To Present Program On Grove

The Henry County Historical Society will meet at 6 p.m. on Thursday, April 6th at the Paris-Henry County Heritage Center. Society President David Webb will give a presentation on Grove Tower and display local history research material and artifacts recently donated by the Inman Estate, including items from the Grove High School Class of 1944.

Members will consider allocating funds to purchase objects at an upcoming auction and reprinting Shannon McFarlin’s book, As If They Were Ours: The Story of Camp Tyson - America’s Only Barrage Balloon Training Facility. The public is invited to attend.

Victim Writes “Help” On Bank Deposit Slip

 By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Union City, Tenn.—A Union City man was arrested for aggravated assault after his victim wrote ‘Help’ on a deposit slip at a local bank.

Demonte Perez Long, age 25, of 900 Casey St., was booked into the Obion County Jail.

Police were called to First Citizens’ National Bank on a report that a woman had written “Help” on a deposit slip there. Police approached the car and found a man and woman. The woman told police that Long had gotten angry at her because she wouldn’t give him money to get high.

She said she wouldn’t give him $150 to buy cocaine and he grabbed her and tried to stab her with a wine bottle opener. Police found marks on the victim’s neck and arm and gave her information on domestic violence.

 

Two Nabbed For Assault, Burglary Charges

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—A Paris men was arrested for aggravated assault and another is being held for aggravated burglary in two separate incidents.

Anderson Johnson, age 43, of 816 Cooper St., is being held in the Henry County Jail on $5,000 bond on a charge of aggravated burglary. Paris Police were called to 205 Wynn st. on a report of a burglary in progress and found Johnson walking off of the porch. The owner told police he had broken hit and hit him. The report goes on to report that the residents of the house had to bar the door to keep him from coming in again.

Leon Foster, age 38, of 819 Curtis/329 Washington St., was arrested for aggravated assault and domestic assault. According to the report, Foster reportedly punched a woman, pushed her to the ground, kicked her and choked her and then left the scene. He was arrested later at the L&L Bar and Grill in Paris.

 

Henry County Schools Closed 


Paris, Tenn.--Due to today's continuing weather threat, Henry County Schools will be closed today.





Saturday, April 1, 2017


Henry County Dems Elect New Officers

Paris, Tenn.-At its annual meeting Saturday morning, the Henry County Democratic Party elected new officers: Chairman Daniel Powell, Vice Chair Ronnie Herman, Secretary Kayla Carter and Treasurer Pam VanDyke. The officers will serve two-year terms. Former Chair Reggie Caldwell thanked everyone for their support over the past two years. From left, Carter, Herman, VanDyke and Powell. (Photo courtesy of Reggie Caldwell).


Local Academy Cadets Are Parade Grand Marshals

Souvenir Book Dedicated To First Responders

 

Queen Jasmine Jones, center, announces the court's community project will be Tomorrow's Hope. From left, Julia Dye, Calista Herrera, Jones, Reagor, Godbott. (McFarlin photo).


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—With a theme of “An All-American Event”, the Grand Marshals of the World’s Biggest Fish Fry Grand Parade will be three young people who have been accepted to military academies: Bailey Compton, Jesse Hudgins and Gunner Osbron.

In keeping with that theme, this year’s souvenir book is dedicated to Henry County’s First Responders.

The 64th annual fish fry will be held from April 22-29.

The announcements were made Saturday morning for the official opening of the WBFF’s headquarters, located in front of Paris Inns and Suites on East Wood Street.

Compton has been accepted to the U.S. Air Force Academy and is the daughter of Ray and Rhonda Compton of Paris. Hudgins has been accepted to West Point and is the son of Chris and Mandy Hudgins of Paris. Osbron has been accepted to the U.S. Naval Academy and is the son of Jamie and Shannon Osbron.

A large contingent of first-responders were present for the announcement, including EMTs, paramedics, city and county police officers and sheriff’s deputies, firefighters, rescue squad members and Air Evac members.

Announcements were made by the WBFF General Manager Josh “Smokey” Taylor, along with Assistant General Manager Lisa Stone and Past General Manager Loria Plunk.

The Hostess Princess Court was on hand, including Hostess Princess Jasmine Jones, First Maid Calista Herrera, Second Maid Alison Reagor, Third Maid Julia Dye, and Fourth Maid Roezona Godbott. Queen Jones announced that the Court’s community service project this year will be Tomorrow’s Hope and they will be encouraging the public to donate to that program.

 

A portion of the large crowd of first responders on hand this morning. (McFarlin photo).


Long-Time Anchorman Tom Butler Dies

Paducah, Tenn.—Long-time WPSD-TV Anchorman Tom Butler died on Friday from complications after a fall he suffered in 2015. Butler began his 35-year career in 1962 at Channel 6 in Paducah as a reporter, later becoming anchorman and news director.

Butler mentored many young reporters that worked at Channel 6 over the years. He interviewed presidents and was the calming voice on television in the wake of the Heath High School shootings in Paducah.

Visitation will be held from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday and 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Tuesday at Heartland Worship Center in Paducah. The funeral will be held at 1 p.m. on Tuesday. Lindsey Funeral Home is handling the arrangements. 


Church Honors Atkinson For 55 Years' Service

Puryear, Tenn.- A celebration honoring Roland Atkinson and his 55 years of service to Union Grove Missionary Baptist Church in Puryear was held last Sunday. A large crowd was on hand for the luncheon and program. Atkinson is a long-time educator in Henry County and was honored with the Loyal Patriot Award on Martin Luther King Jr. Day earlier this year. In photo, he is being congratulated by Henry County Juvenile Court Judge Vicki Snyder.


Teacher Pleads Guilty To Lesser Charge

Fulton, Ky.—During a court appearance Thursday, a Fulton County High School teacher pleaded guilty to sexual misconduct involving a student.

Charlotte Racheal Netz, age 25, of Union City, pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of misdemeanor sexual misconduct following a plea agreement. Netz was initially charged with third-degree rape by the Kentucky State Police.

The hearing was held before Special Judge Jack Telle of Marshall County.

 


Asking For Donations For Rescue Squad

Paris, Tenn.—Squad Member Carol Tedford helps the U.S. Postal Service load the 16,752 letters that are being sent to residents of Paris and Henry County asking for donations for the County Rescue Squad. Donations are tax deductible and help with the ongoing operations of the rescue squad in the local community. (Diann McGuire photo).

 


Friday, March 31, 2017


Ultimate Aldean Experience At Discovery Park

Union City, Tenn.-   The Ultimate Aldean Experience takes the stage for Discovery Park of America’s first 2017 Southern Nights music festival on Saturday, April 1st.

The Southern Nights music festivals at Discovery Park are family friendly, with great music, great food and a unique atmosphere, unlike any other.  This year, all children ages 12 and under are welcome to attend with an adult for no charge.  All other tickets are just $10.  Park officials encourage everyone to bring quilts, bag chairs and enjoy a fun evening of food, yard games and music under the stars!

On Saturday, the gates will open at 5:30 for guests to enjoy food trucks, pizza tents and yard games.  At 7 p.m., Cotton Clifton and the Pickers will take the stage.  And, then, at 8:30, you will think you are at a Jason Aldean concert as Greg West presents the Ultimate Aldean Tribute experience! 

The festivals are held on the Great Lawn at the park.  As guests enter, they can set up their bag chairs or spread out their blankets and then choose from a great variety of food.  Corn Hole, Frisbee, and other yard games will help entertain the crowd until the music begins.   

 Discovery Park of America is located at 830 Everett Blvd., in Union City and is open 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 Tuesday through Sunday.  It is a unique blend of history and technology, science and fun.  To find out more about Discovery Park of America including additional opportunities to enjoy live music at the park, visit the website atwww.discoveryparkofamerica.com and click “calendar”.

 

 

“The Hawk” At UTM Receives Awards


WUTM staff members (l-r) Holly Seng, Natalie King and Tori Seng attended the 2017 Intercollegiate Broadcasting System Conference held in New York City and accepted awards on behalf of the station.


Martin, Tenn. – WUTM 90.3 FM “The Hawk,” the University of Tennessee at Martin’s student-run radio station, received 25 separate awards during the recent Intercollegiate Broadcasting System Conference held in New York City.

The station’s long list of accolades includes a Platinum Award, the highest peer-reviewed distinction given to college radio stations by the Intercollegiate Broadcasting System. WUTM has received this award for seven consecutive years.

 “No matter the category or content being provided, our judges consistently tell us that the material students at WUTM produce are some of the strongest entries they come across each year,” said Chris Thomas, chairman of the board and president of the Intercollegiate Broadcasting System. “The Hawk at the University of Tennessee at Martin, under the guidance and leadership of Dr. Richard Robinson, continues to be one of the top performers each and every year at our annual (Intercollegiate Broadcasting System) media awards.”

WUTM staff members received first-place awards in six categories. The winners are as follows:

·         Best Newscast – Ashley Shores, a senior from Lebanon;

·         Best Spot News – Tori Seng, a senior from Union City, and Shores;

·         Best Sports Play-by-Play – Kelsey Bussell, a 2016 graduate from Cookeville; Chuck Hammer, a 2016 graduate from Martin; and Jared Peckenpaugh, a 2016 graduate from Finley;

·         Best Sports Director – Peckenpaugh;

·         Best Business Director – Holly Seng, a sophomore from Union City;

·         Best News Report – Tori Seng and Ashleigh Burton, a 2016 graduate from South Fulton. This award was received specifically for their work with the UTM-TV station. This is the first year entries from college television stations were accepted for consideration.

Fourteen UT Martin students also received top-five finishes in 18 categories.


 

April Is Month For Special Rabies Rate

Paris, Tenn.—The month of April is Rabies Vaccination Month in Henry County and every veterinarian in the county offers a special rate in order for as many cats and dogs to be vaccinated.

The special rate is $6 plus $1.50 license fee to have your pet vaccinated.

Dogs three months of age and cats six months of age are required to be vaccinated against rabies. To take advantage of this opportunity to get your pet vaccinated at the special rate, you need only to take your pet to the vet of your choice through the end of April.

All four local veterinary clinics will offer the special: The Animal Doctor, 224 Memorial Drive; Lakeway Animal Clinic, 2701 E. Wood St.; Mineral Wells Animal Clinic, 1116 Volunteer Drive; and Paris Veterinary Clinic, 2101 E. Wood St. All are in Paris.



Fire Destroys Former Midway Truck Stop


Firefighters battle the blaze last night. (Photo courtesy of Chad Lowry).

Paris, Tenn.-A fire destroyed the former Midway Truck Stop located midway between Paris and Camden last night. The building, located on Hwy. 641S, currently housed the Let ‘Er Buck Saloon.

Volunteer Fire Departments from Oakland, Springville and Mansfield responded to the blaze, which started around 11 p.m.

The fire started on the south end of the building, where the café and store were located.

The building is owned by Russell Downing of Holladay.

The building is a total loss.




Thursday, March 30, 2017


Three More Arrested For Stewart County Murder

                                       

  Amy Hankins                           Ashley Hankins                    John Perry

Nashville, Tenn.– An ongoing investigation by Special Agents with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation into the 2016 murder of a Cumberland City man has resulted in the arrest of three more individuals, bringing to five the number of people charged in this death. All are being held on $1M bond each.

At the request of 23rd District Attorney General Ray Crouch, on June 7, 2016, TBI Special Agents joined detectives with the Cumberland City Police Department in investigating the shooting death of Donnie Cooksey. The victim was found deceased in his Wallace Street home. During the course of the investigation, Agents developed information that a white truck was seen in the area at the time of Mr. Cooksey’s death. The investigation revealed that Gerald Lovelace and Abdullah Powell were in that vehicle and intended to rob the victim, and were individuals responsible for the death of Mr. Cooksey. Both were arrested Tuesday morning. Agents also developed information that identified Amy Hankins, Ashley Hankins and John Perry as individuals responsible for the murder as well.

On Wednesday night, Ashley Hankins, 32, and John Curtis Perry, 37, were arrested and booked into the Stewart County Jail. Amy Hankins, 30, was served the warrant in the Montgomery County Jail, where there is a hold on her for Stewart County. All three are charged with First Degree Murder, and each has a bond of $1,000,000.


Toasting To Reddick’s Retirement

Paris, Tenn.—Assistant Library Director Freda Reddick, middle, toasts to her pending retirement with Library Director Connie McSwain, left, and Children’s Director Kayla Nation at Thursday night’s reception for Reddick, who has worked for the library for 30 years. A large crowd assembled for the reception, which included a performance by members of The Church In Paris choir and refreshments. Words were spoken by Paris Mayor Carlton Gerrell, Rev. Leon White, County Commissioner Kenneth Humphreys, and McSwain. Reddick thanked everyone for the reception “and for allowing me to serve the public for 30 years. It’s been a pleasure and an honor”. (Shannon McFarlin photo).


Benton Man Arrested After Shooting At Worker

Benton, Ky.—A Benton, Ky., man was arrested after he shot at a State Department of Community Based Services worker this morning. The worker was attempting to conduct a home visit at his residence.

Arrested was James Butler, age 51, of Abraham Rd., charged with first-degree wanton endangerment and is in the Marshall County Jail.

The incident occurred around 10:40 a.m. today. The Kentucky  State Police received a call that shots had been fired at Alexia Pritchett, a state worker.

The Kentucky State Police were assisted by the Marshall County Sheriff Department and Benton Police Department. The investigation is continuing by Trooper Donald Bowman. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Kentucky State Police Post 1 at 270-856-3721 or anonymously at 1-800-222-5555.  


Storm Clouds Moving In

Paris, Tenn.—Dark clouds were on the move early this morning at the Eiffel Tower Park in Paris. A stormy day—with possible severe thunderstorms and much rain—is predicted for today. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

 

Pedestrian Hit Trying To Save Dog

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Huntingdon, Tenn.—A woman who was trying to save a dog from getting hit is in critical condition this morning after being struck by a vehicle in Huntingdon. The victim was airlifted to Vanderbilt Medical Center in Nashville.

Amberly Hicks, age 30, Huntingdon, was struck by a vehicle on West Main St. near the western city limits of Huntingdon around 4:10 p.m. Wednesday.

Huntingdon Police and rescue workers arrived on the scene and found her unconscious. Huntingdon Director of Public Safety Walter Smothers told WENK/WTPR this morning that Vanderbilt staff told him she has never regained consciousness.

Witnesses told officers it appeared that she was trying to get a dog out of the road when she was struck by the mirror of a pickup truck that was westbound.

Smothers said the driver of the truck was Marlene Hernandez of Milan. Hernandez was driving a pickup and pulling a boat. “Investigation of the accident does not indicate any fault on the part of Ms. Hernandez. No charges are expected to be forthcoming,” Smothers said.

 



UTM To Host Court Of Appeals

From left, Judges Roger Page, Timothy Easter and John Everett Williams hear oral arguments during the Court of Criminal Appeal’s special session on the UT Martin campus Sept. 29, 2015. (UTM photo).

 

Martin, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee at Martin will host the Tennessee Court of Appeals, April 4, in the Boling University Center’s Watkins Auditorium. The court will hear oral arguments in four cases beginning at 10 and 11 a.m. and 1 and 2 p.m. Proceedings are open to the public.

The state of Tennessee has two intermediate-level appellate courts, the Court of Appeals and the Court of Criminal Appeals. The Court of Appeals, created by the Tennessee General Assembly in 1925, hears civil cases from trial courts and certain state boards and commissions. The court has 12 members who sit in panels of three and meet monthly in Nashville, Knoxville and Jackson. The court may occasionally meet in alternate locations.

Court of Appeals hearings do not include witnesses, juries or testimonies. Instead, attorneys from both sides present either oral or written arguments directly to the judges. On April 4, participating attorneys in each case will have 15 minutes to present oral arguments. The remainder of each hour has been allotted to answer questions from UT Martin students.

The panel meeting on the UT Martin campus will include Judge Steven Stafford and Judge Brandon Gibson from the Court of Appeals with Chancellor Michael Maloan and Circuit Judge Jeff Parham sitting as special judges. Stafford, Maloan and Parham are all UT Martin alumni.

The Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals heard cases on the UT Martin campus in September 2015.

The court is hosted by the UT Martin College of Business and Global Affairs. For more information on the court’s on-campus session, contact Dr. Chris Baxter, professor of political science, at 731-881-7367 or email cbaxter@utm.edu.

 

“Ragtime, The Musical” Coming To The Dixie

 

Huntingdon, Tenn.-After more than ten years and 32 theatre productions for audiences across West Tennessee, the renowned Bethel University Renaissance Theatre will take the stage at The Dixie on April 7th and 8th to present “Ragtime, The Musical”. Among those starring in the production is Alexis Ward of Paris.

The stories of an upper-class wife, a determined Jewish immigrant and a daring young Harlem musician unfold, all three united by their desire and belief in a brighter tomorrow. Set in the volatile pot of turn-of-the-century New York, these three Americans confront history's timeless contradictions of wealth and poverty, freedom and prejudice, hope and despair, and what it means to live in America.  

Featuring over 75 actors, a full orchestra, and backstage students, this show will be a grand event that you will remember for years to come.  

 “Ragtime” will be presented on April 7th at 7pm and April 8th at 2pm and 7pm at The Dixie Carter Performing Arts and Academic Enrichment Center in Huntingdon, Tennessee.  Tickets may be purchased by calling the box office at 731-986-2100 or going online todixiepac.net.  

“Ragtime” is sponsored by Bethel University, FirstBank and Friends of The Dixie.

 


Wednesday, March 29, 2017


Dr. Morgan Named Morehead State Prez

Morehead, Ky.—Paris Native Dr. Jay Morgan has been named the 14th President of Morehead State University after a national search.

Dr. Morgan will succeed President Wayne D. Andrews. Dr. Andrews announced in April 2016 that he would retire on June 30.

“My family and I are honored and excited to become a part of the Morehead State family. It is a tremendous privilege to be selected to lead MSU,” said Dr. Morgan. “I look forward to building on the work of President Andrews, the Board of Regents and the University’s outstanding students, faculty and staff.”

Dr. Morgan’s contract is for a four-year term, beginning July 1, and will be reviewed annually for any extensions. He also will hold the academic rank of professor based on his prior experience.

Dr. Morgan, 45, currently serves as the chief academic officer and vice president for academic affairs and student success for the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education. He worked at Murray State University in a number of roles, including Vice President and Associate Provost in recent years and was a member of Murray City Council.

Dr. Morgan holds a B.S. degree in agriculture science and business, and an M.S. degree in agriculture science from Murray State University. He earned his Ph.D. degree at Oklahoma State University in agricultural education with a minor in management and significant course work in educational administration.

   


Benton County Schools Closed Thursday



Camden, Tenn.--Due to the threat of severe weather, Benton Co. Schools be closed tomorrow. All school-related activities are also cancelled.


Stewart County Schools Closed Thursday

Dover, Tenn.--After listening to the National Weather Service's briefing this afternoon and consulting with local emergency management officials, the decision was made to close Stewart County Schools tomorrow, Thursday, March 30, due to the strong possibility for severe weather throughout the day.  


Kayak Fishing This Week At Paris Landing

 

Buchanan, Tenn.--Kayak anglers from across the nation will converge on Kentucky Lake this week, March 29th through April 1st for the biggest showdown in competitive kayak fishing. The tournament will be held at Paris Landing State Park.

The group also will be at the Henry County Fairgrounds starting today through April 1. Registration is occurring and a dinner will be held for competitors.

Nearly 400 anglers are poised to stake their claim on the second ever title of KBF National Champion. The tournament is the second in the series with the first also taking place last winter on Kentucky Lake where Matt Ball took home the first championship title and a check for $32,700. With another event connected with it, there will be some 600 anglers in Henry Co. 

The KBF will be at the Henry County Fairgrounds starting today through April 1. Registration is occurring and a dinner will be held for competitors.

The payout has increased a bit in 2017, with the first place guarantee set at $35,000 and the opportunity at thousands more in KBF BONUS BUCKS contingency money, there is a real opportunity for a competitor to walk away with over $50,000. This significant payout is only made more impressive by the fact that the field is paid out with the top 10% taking home a check and many of those being larger than any other kayak fishing event in history.

For more information on all Kayak Bass Fishing events visit www.kayakbassfishing.com 

 

PSSD Calls Special Meeting

Paris, Tenn.—The Paris Special Schools District board of education will hold a special meeting at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 4, for the purpose of discussion and action on the vacancy for Director of Schools. Superintendent Mike Brown announced his pending retirement from the position earlier this month. The meeting will be held at PSSD headquarters on 641S in Paris.


McKenzie Man Arrested In Store Parking Lot

 

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Huntingdon, Tenn.—A McKenzie man was arrested on drug charges in the parking lot of the Huntingdon Wal-Mart earlier this afternoon by the Huntingdon Police Department. When arrested, Adrian Nesbitt, age 28, was found with two bags of marijuana weighing over 52 grams.

Police saw Nesbitt pull into the parking lot at 1:14 p.m. and had prior knowledge he had multiple warrants on him in Carroll County and stopped him when he got parked.

According to Huntingdon Director of Public Safety Walter Smothers, upon checking his vehicle a strong odor of marijuana was noticed by the officers. The two bags of marijuana were seen in the floorboard of the pick-up truck Nesbitt was driving.

Nesbitt was taken to the Carroll County jail on prior warrants including: Capias from Weakley County, Charges from Carroll County: Theft Over $1000, Vandalism Over $1000 and Aggravated Burglary.

He also is being charged by Huntingdon Investigator Joey Hedge with felony possession of with intent to sell and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Huntingdon Officers were Investigator Hedge, Officer Danny Emerson and Commander Johnny Hill. Two Carroll County Sheriff’s Deputies came to the scene to assist, Sgt. Lee Bates and Deputy Chris Byrd.


Tanner Is Juvenile Court's Best Friend

 

           Judge Vicki Snyder and Tanner at work. 


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn—They say dogs are man’s best friend and that certainly is true at the Henry County Juvenile Court, where Tanner, a beautiful Golden Retriever, serves as therapy dog for children who have to appear at the court.

Tanner has been working for the court system for some eight months, since he moved to Henry County with his owners Ken and Barbara Fry. Barbara is also his trainer.

To say that Tanner is the most highly-certified privately-owned canine in Henry County would be an understatement. Starting out with his Star Puppy certification with the AKC, Tanner quickly moved on to the next level and then the level after that. He has achieved his CGC—which stands for Canine Good Citizen—and also holds TDI-A (Therapy Dog International) certification, and his TDI-OV (Outstanding Volunteer) certificate, which he earned after 150 volunteer visits to hospice programs, nursing homes and other facilities.

Barbara said Tanner was initially trained during classes at Rockford, Ill., where the Fry’s lived before moving to Henry County. Ken Fry is retired after a 30-year career as a policeman and Barbara worked in the courthouse at Rockford.

When the Fry’s became settled in at their rural Paris home, Barbara took Tanner around to nursing homes and to the court, volunteering his serves as a therapy dog. Barbara noted how intelligent Tanner is (he knows several hundred words) and is so gentle with people, young and old. “He just learns so quickly,” she said, and also understands hand signals.

The juvenile court was especially receptive to having Tanner work for them. Judge Vicki Snyder is an animal lover and she has seen first-hand the calming effect that animals—especially dogs—have on people.

The local court used to have a puppy program—the “Puppy Pal” program—in which the sheriff’s office animal shelter brought puppies to the court on days when children were at court to calm them down before they had to appear on cases. Puppies are no longer available regularly and that program was discontinued, Snyder said.

“We’d been wanting to find a dog or dogs to work with the children again and we found just what we needed in Tanner,” Snyder said. “It’s just a blessing to everyone here.”

Tanner alleviates the fears children have when they’re in court, but Snyder said Tanner also has a calming effect on court staff and attorneys.

“He’s just a real blessing,” she said.

 


Watson Named Distinguished Alumni At MSU

 

Murray, Ky. — Amy Bryan Watson, award-winning broadcast anchor and journalist, was recently named one of the 2017 recipients of the Distinguished Alumni Award at Murray State University.

Murray State presents the Distinguished Alumni Award annually to alumni who have made meaningful contributions to their profession on a local, state and national level. Established in 1962, the award is the highest honor granted by the Murray State University Alumni Association, and its recipients include Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists, renowned authors, research scientists, physicians and educators.

Watson was graduated in 1989 with a degree in journalism and has been a television anchorwoman at WPSD-TV in Paducah and currently at WTVF-TV in Nashville.

In 1990, she joined KFVS, a CBS affiliate, as a general assignment reporter and fill-in anchor in Cape Girardeau, Missouri. A couple years later, Watson moved to Chattanooga, Tennessee and joined another CBS affiliate, WDEF, as a weekend anchor and general assignment and consumer reporter. In 1993, Watson returned back to Kentucky to continue her career, this time with the NBC affiliate, WPSD. For thirteen years, Watson was a part of the WPSD-TV team as the six and ten o’clock anchor, the five o’clock anchor and a special assignments reporter.

Watson’s time with WPSD-TV came to a close when she and her husband Derrick, a fellow Murray State alumnus, moved to Hopkinsville to be closer to his job in 2006. However, her absence from broadcast news did not last long. Later that year, WTVF-TV, the CBS affiliate in Nashville, Tennessee hired Watson to be the co-anchor for the 4–8 a.m. morning news. She continues in this position to this day, earning multiple awards during her tenure. Since Watson joined WTVF-TV, the 4–8 a.m. news has been ranked as the number one morning news in Nashville for the last ten years, as well as being ranked number one nationally in metered markets.   

Watson will be honored at the Distinguished Alumni Award banquet to be held April 21 at 6 p.m. in the CFSB’s Center Murray Room and will have the opportunity to speak about her professional experiences. The banquet is open to the public with tickets available for $30 at murraystate.edu/distinguishedalumni until April 14. About Murray State University: Murray State University


Five Arrested On Drug, Gun Charges

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The Henry County Metro Crime Unit arrested five people at a Springville resident Tuesday morning, charging all with a variety of drug and gun charges. All are still being held in the Henry County Jail.

According to Sheriff Deputy Sgt Jamie Myrick, officers with the Metro Crime Unit conducted a search at 303 Blackberry Lane around 10:24 a.m. and found a variety of pipes, syringes and other paraphernalia, along with a gun.

Arrested was:

Tara Woodward, age 30, of that address, who was charged with felony child neglect, child abuse, child endangerment and violation of probation, as well as drug charges. Her seven-month-old baby was found at the house. The Henry County Jail reported this morning that Woodward is being held without bond because she also was charged with violation of probation.

Harold J. Botts, age 43, also of that address, held on $2,500 bond.

Thomas Johnson, age 37, Watson Lane, Paris, held on $1,000 bond.

Raven Wilson, age 27, of Camden, held on $1,000 bond.

Jesse A. Hayes, age 27, of Little Rock, held on $10,000 bond.


Bow Wow At The Barn Set For April 8

Paris, Tenn.—Tickets are on sale for the first-ever Bow Wow at the Barn, set for 6-9 p.m. Saturday, April 8, at Dunagan Farms in Paris. The event is sponsored by the Carroll County Humane Society, which serves Carroll and Henry Counties, and funds raised go toward animal care. Dunagan Farms is located at 3500 Gate Three Rd. in Paris.

The Carroll County Humane Society offers discounted spaying and neutering for cats and dogs and many other services.

Tickets are $25 and are available at the Carroll County shelter, Paris Veterinary Clinic and the Huntingdon Animal Clinic. Tickets are also available at PayPal.me/cchstn.

During the event, Cash’s Wood-Fired Pizza in Paris will be serving and beer and sodas from Perrylodgic Brewery in Paris. will be available.

Live music will be presented by Highland Drive band. A wine pull will be held and a live auction will be held. Items for the auction are still being accepted.



Monday, March 20, 2017


911 Looks Ahead To County-Wide Radio Coverage

911 Chair John Etheridge (head of table), Richie Chilcutt and new member Norma Gerrell look over the agenda. (McFarlin photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—In what Henry County Sheriff Monte Belew called “one of the most important things the 911 board has done for a while”, work is progressing on the Henry County/City of Paris project that will ensure there will be no dead spots for first responders to communicate throughout the county by police radio.

At Monday’s 911 meeting, Director Mark Archer reminded the board that the 911 program will be investing $250,000 in the project and both the county and city of Paris governments have officially approved it. “We’re getting memorandums of understanding from all the agencies in the county right now,” Archer said.

“What it’s going to take is a community block grant, one from the county in 2018, and one from the city in 2019,” he said. “It’s a very large project, but it will not go forward without the block grant.”

911 Board Chair John Etheridge said, “I know you’ve worked hard on this, but the end result will be virtually no dead spots for police radios in the county and all agencies will be able to communicate with each other.”

Archer noted, “We’ve really done our due diligence to make sure we are getting the best we can.”

Belew said, “This is probably one of the most important things 911 board done for a while. I can name numerous sites where we don’t have radio communication at all in the county. This is really going to be a valuable investment for the county.”

At the meeting’s outset, Paris Special Schools District Curriculum Director Norma Gerrell was welcomed on the board.

Officers also were re-elected: Chair John Etheridge, Vice Chair Chuck Elizondo and Secretary Twila Rose.

In other business:

--Archer reported that re-naming roads in the new 218 Bypass area is ongoing. Residents on those roads will be voting on the names.

--Technician Chad Howard conducted talks at two county Mennonite Schools and Holy Cross Church.

 

Six-Minute Commission Meet Sets Record

Paris, Tenn.—Meeting in a record-breaking short and sweet session of only six minutes Monday evening, the Henry County Commission appointed Commissioner Dell Carter to the Board of Zoning Appeals for a three-year session and approved budget transfers.

 

Special City Commission Meet Set

Paris, Tenn.—The Paris City Commission has called a special meeting for 11 a.m. Thursday to consider a request for approval of a certificate of compliance for Paris Loft Wines and Spirits. Owner Matthew Michael is in the process of submitting the required information to the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission for a new license. The meeting is open to the public.

   

Elderly Woman Robbed In Parking Lot

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Murray, Ky.—An elderly woman was knocked to the ground during a robbery in the Wal-Mart parking lot in Murray and Murray Police are seeking the public’s help in apprehending the suspect. According to Police Sgt. Brant Shutt, police believe the suspect targeted the victim and parked near her because she is elderly.

The robbery occurred at 9:15 a.m. today. The Murray Police have released surveillance photos of the suspect’s vehicle and they are posted on the WENK/WTPR website and Facebook pages.

Wal-Mart surveillance video shows a dark colored vehicle, possibly a Toyota Camry or Corolla, with Tennessee plates, circle the parking lot multiple times, Shutt said. The suspect vehicle appears to spot the target vehicle and backed into a parking stall to wait for the driver to park and exit their vehicle and walk past.

Shutt said, “As the elderly victim walked past the vehicle, the suspect lunged out and grabbed the victim’s purse dragging her to the ground in the process. After a brief struggle for the purse the suspect then re-entered the vehicle and quickly sped off almost striking the victim with the vehicle.”

The only available description of the suspect is that she is a white female with dark brown or blonde hair, average build, and appeared to be approximately early 20’s in age. Anyone with information is asked to call the MPD at 270-753-1621.


 

Man With Dog Steals Car, Leads Police On Chase

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—A vehicle stolen in Paris ended up with a pursuit through several states, ending with the suspect being held in the Henderson County Jail.

The incident began Sunday morning at the Pocket’s convenience store on Mineral Wells Ave., when a man parked his car by the pump, left it running and went inside the store. He noticed a man with dreadlocks sitting with his dog on the curb outside.

While inside, the car owner saw his Chevy Tahoe being backed out of the lot and driven off. A witness told police the man in dreadlocks put his dog in the back seat of the Chevy Tahoe and drove off.

A while later, the Benton County Sheriff’s Office reported being involved in a pursuit with the stolen vehicle on I-40. A while after that, the Tennessee Highway Patrol reported stopping the vehicle in Henderson County.

Arrested was Joseph Sizemore, age 24, of Helton, Ky. He is in jail, charged with theft, evading arrest, reckless driving, DUI and speeding.

  

Sushi Party Time At Lee Academy

 

Paris, Tenn.-It was sushi time at the Lee Academy for the Arts Saturday evening, with some 50 people on hand for the event, eager to learn how to expertly prepare their own sushi rolls. The instructor for the evening was Dan Knowles of Paris, who also is a local artist and nationally-renowned banjo master. Knowles as assisted in the preparation by his wife, Debbie, board members and friends. A wide array of toppings was set out for everyone to use to create their sushi rolls. The making of the sushi rolls was followed by the best part: the eating of the sushi rolls, along with salad and miso soup. (Shannon McFarlin photos).

 

Talking Turkey At Wildlife Refuge

 

Ranger Joan Howe, right, introduces Speaker Laura French. (Jean Owens photo).


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Springville, Tenn.—Thirty people were on hand to learn about the “Amazing Wild Turkey” Saturday afternoon at the Tennessee Wildlife Refuge. Laura French presented the program, informing the group that wild turkeys have 30 different calls and each means something different.

A handful of organizations have worked to bring wild turkeys back from near extinction, including the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency, and now wild turkeys are plentiful, as anyone who drives along the country roads near the refuge can attest.

According to French, wild turkeys can fly up to 55 mph and run 25 mph, they roost on the top of trees and they can swim. She said turkey hunters should never use the gobble call when hunting because you can be mistaken for a turkey and that could end very badly for the hunter.

More turkey facts: the female is a hen; the male is a tom or a gobbler and the babies are called chicks.

 



Sunday, March 19, 2017


House Heavily Damaged By Fire

Deputy Sgt. Bryan Hall and Paris Firefighter Lt. Michael Long at the scene of the fire at 445 Smith Rd., Paris. (McFarlin photo).


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—A home at 445 Smith Rd., Paris, was heavily damaged in a fire Sunday afternoon.

Paris Firefighters arrived quickly and were able to save the structure, which suffered a large amount of smoke damage. The fire appeared to start in living room area of the home, according to Henry County Sheriff's Deputy Bryan Hall, who was also at the scene.

The home's resident told WENK/WTPR he came home from Murray and found the smoke billowing out of the residence and called 911. Stubblefield said no one was home when the fire started.

The fire occurred around 3:30 p.m.



Wednesday, March 22, 2017


Rekindled House Fire Investigated

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The Paris Fire Department is investigating a rekindling of a fire which destroyed a Routon Street home.

The original fire occurred around 3:37 a.m. Tuesday at 412 Routon Street and the fire department was called back to the scene at 7:10 a.m. Wednesday when the fire rekindled in a different spot.

Fire officials said the homeowner told them he had been grilling earlier in the day in the front porch area, but didn’t notice anything amiss when he went to bed. He woke up with the front area of the house on fire.

According to Assistant Fire Captain Randall Jones, firefighters were called back to the house when a fire started in the front room and spread to the attic.

 

Man On Fire Seriously Injured

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—A man was seriously injured when his clothes caught on fire inside his Depot Street home in Paris Wednesday afternoon.

Assistant Paris Fire Chief Randall Jones said the department was called to 1028 Depot St. around 4:08 p.m. after a neighbor called 911 to report the man was on fire inside his house. “His clothes started on fire and he was badly burned,” Jones said. “It appears he made contact with a gas furnace in the house; one of those standing gas furnaces.”

A neighbor regularly checked on him and had gone to his house to see if he was o.k. when she found smoke coming from the house and found him on fire on the living room floor.

The Henry County EMS and Paris Police were also on the scene.

Jones said the neighbor put the fire out before the fire department got there.

The victim was taken to Henry County Medical Center by EMS and Jones said a call was made for an air ambulance.


Paris Man Charged In Rape, Incest Of Child

Paris, Tenn.—A Paris man was arrested Wednesday on a charge of rape and incest involving a nine-year-old child. He is being held on $250,000 bond at the Henry County Jail and ordered to have no contact with the victim.

Daniel Korey Hall, age 41, of South Poplar Street, was arrested at a local business by Paris Police.

Lt. Ricky Watson said investigators began working a case involving unlawful sexual contact with a minor on March 6. The offense occurred March 3 at Hall’s home. Watson said the child was related to Hall and was spending the night at Hall’s home when the alleged crime took place.

Watson said additional charges are pending in the case.


Update On UTM Shooting Incident

Martin, Tenn.--Martin Police Department officers have located the 2005 black Mazda within the city limits of Martin that was involved in the incident yesterday and one of the three occupants has also been located. That subject is being interviewed about the incident at this time by Martin Police Dept. Investigators. 


The investigation continues and it has been confirmed that there were no injuries in relation the shot that was fired during the altercation, according to Police Captain Phillip Fuqua.


A 21-year-old UTM Student, Tommy was arrested following the incident yesterday afternoon. He is charged with felony reckless endangerment, theft and unlawful possession of a weapon in commission of a felony. He is being held in the Weakley County Detention Center.

The shooting incident followed a fracas in the University Center.



Back Alley Project Is This Way

 

Paris, Tenn.--Paris Artists Dan Knowles and John Monroe have been especially busy of late, completing the last two murals in the Back Alley project. The murals are on either end of the alley that is situated between Market and Fentress Streets in downtown Paris. Knowles and Monroe are completing a self-portrait of themselves at one of the alley, which alerts the public that the Back Alley Project is there. They also are completing the mural on the rear of Mari-Mac Boutique which depicts Dr. Anna Veltman, who was the first female physician in Paris. Other murals in the alley depict a duel which occurred in downtown Paris at the turn of the century, a jewelry store and dry goods store. (Shannon McFarlin photo).


Discovery Park, County Museum To Merge

Union City, Tenn.—The Obion County Commission has approved a merger of the Obion County Museum and Discovery Park of America in Union City.

Museum officials made a formal request at the commission’s Monday meeting to relinquish its assets to Discovery Park. What that means is: The museum will continue being an official entity, but its collections and artifacts will be on display at Discovery Park in the future.

Under the museum’s charter, both the county and Union City City Council must approve the request.

What that means is: Once approved by all parties, the museum will continue being an official entity, but its collections and artifacts will be on display at Discovery Park in the future.

 

W. Earl Brown To Be Honored At MSU

Murray. Ky.— Actor W. Earl Brown will be honored as one of the 2017 recipients of Murray State University’s Distinguished Alumni Award. Brown is a 1986 alumnus of MSU, graduating with degrees in theatre and electronic media.

Brown will be taking a brief intermission from Hollywood to return to Murray State’s Robert E. Johnson Theatre April 27–30, 2017. Performing the role of Big Daddy in “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,” Brown is excited to return back to his roots in the Murray State theatre department. Over the years, Brown has remained very engaged with the department, often returning to the University to lead theatre workshops and host Q&A sessions for current students. 

Brown has appeared in “Scream”, “There’s Something About Mary” and is well-known for his television appearances on “Deadwood”, “Justfied”, “Six Feet Under”, “The X-Files” and “American Horror Story”.

He started acting at Murray State and was involved with the theatre, journalism and mass communications departments there.

Murray State presents the Distinguished Alumni Award annually to alumni who have made meaningful contributions to their profession on a local, state and national level. Established in 1962, the award is the highest honor granted by the Murray State University Alumni Association, and its recipients include Pulitzer Prize winning journalists, renowned authors, research scientists, physicians and educators. 

Brown will be honored at the Distinguished Alumni Award banquet to be held April 21 at 6 p.m. in the CFSB Center’s Murray Room, and he will have the opportunity to speak about his professional experiences. The banquet is open to the public with tickets available for $30 at murraystate.edu/distinguishedalumni until April 14.

 

Dresden Football Coach Resigns

Dresden, Tenn.—Fresh off winning the state championship in 2016, Dresden Head Football Coach Derek Rang is stepping down from the position and has accepted the position as head football coach at Gatlinburg Pittman High School.

Under Rang, the Dresden Lions won the state championship after a perfect 15-0 season last year. His record over three years at Dresden is 32-9.

Rang announced his resignation to students Tuesday afternoon. Rang is from Maryville originally and will succeed Coach Benny Hammonds, who is retiring after 45 years.

The Dresden board of education has not announced a replacement for Rang or what type of search will be conducted.

 

GOP To Hear Speaker On Radical Islam

Paris, Tenn.--The Henry County GOP and Republican Women are jointly hosting a meeting at 7 p.m. Thursday night, with speaker John Miles. Miles is an attorney and Constitutional conservative and he will be speaking on the topic of Radical Islam. The meeting is open to anyone and will be held at the Paris Civic Center on Volunteer Drive. 



Friday, March 24, 2017


Long May They Wave



Paris, Tenn.-Today's steady winds are keeping the flags moving at the Veterans' Memorial on the lawn at the Henry County Courthouse in downtown Paris. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

 

Man Injured In Fire Dies Of Injuries

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—The man who was severely burned in a fire at his Depot Street home in Paris has died of his injuries.

Aaron Dobbs Jr., age 67, of 1028 Depot St., was airlifted to Vanderbilt Medical Center after the accident in his home. Paris Fire Captain Randall Jones told WENK/WTPR Wednesday that Dobbs had apparently set fire to himself when he fell against a gas heater.

A neighbor who regularly checked on Dobbs found him on fire in the living room and put the fire out and called 911.

Vanderbilt Medical Center said this morning that Dobbs died of his injuries.

Dobbs served two terms in Vietnam in the U.S. Army. Dobbs was proud of his Army service and that of his father, Aaron Dobbs Sr. His father was a soldier at Camp Tyson in Paris during WWII and had settled in Henry County after the war. An interview with Aaron Dobbs Jr. is