News

Thu
11
Aug

Four-hundred students return to Gatewood Aug. 12

Gatewood teacher Kim Leach prepares her kindergarten class using a movie theme involving stars. (Photo by Don Richeson.)

From staff reports

EATONTON -- Students at Gatewood School will be in their classrooms on the first day, this Friday, Aug. 12, to begin the school's 46th year. Headmaster Christopher Charles said they are acting under the same mission statement upon which the school was founded in 1970: “To educated students in a nurturing, Christian environment while instilling life-long characteristics of faith, truth, honor, loyalty and pride. Gatewood School will provide an educational experience that prepares students for post-secondary education and lasting success.”

Charles said he anticipates the school year to start with an enrollment of 400 students in pre-K2 through 12th grade, with 47 teachers and nine support staff members.

Thu
11
Aug

Blaze destroys Twilight Shores mobile home

Barely visible Friday through overgrown vegetation, only parts of charred frame remain of a Twilight Shores Road mobile home that burned to the ground last week. (Photo by Don Richeson.)

By Don Richeson / Staff

PUTNAM COUNTY -- Putnam County deputies and firefighters arriving on the scene of a reported Aug. 4 fire in the 200 block of Twilight Shores Road found a mobile home completely engulfed in flames.

A Putnam County Fire-Rescue news release described the residence's structural damage as severe and that it was a complete loss. No injuries were reported as a result of the fire.

Thu
11
Aug

Eatonton Senior Center bustles with activity

Eatonton/Putnam County Senior Center Director LaToshia Maddox feeds center participants lunch recently in the former cafeteria of the old Eatonton Grammar School, where the center relocated to in 2013. The dining area is in part of a rear wing of the former school behind the main Plaza Arts Center building. The center shares different portions of the wing with the Eatonton-Putnam Arts Foundation. Typically, about 30 seniors participate in the lunch program. (Photo by Don Richeson.)

By Lynn Hobbs / Staff

EATONTON -- Hot and nutritional meals, exercise and fitness, helping children, arts and crafts, field trips and education are all happening at the Eatonton/Putnam County Senior Center, according to Director LaToshia Maddox’s presentation to Eatonton City Council Aug. 2.

Located in the Plaza Community Center behind the Plaza Arts Center (the rear wing of the old Eatonton Grammar School), the senior center is host to 20 “regulars” who attend for the congregate meals at the center, Maddox said, noting that 26 are registered for the program and another 12-15 come for the activities and to visit with their friends.

Maddox said from July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016, (the center’s fiscal year), 4,700 congregate meals were served at the center.

Thu
11
Aug

Eatonton truck stop sells Clinton flags, Trump caps

EATONTON -- Eatonton Travel Center Owner Shaker Sangam shows off last week some of the "Hillary for president" flags he has for sale at his truck stop convenience store on the U.S. 441 North Bypass. To show he isn't playing favorites, he also wears a Donald Trump "MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN" cap, which he is also selling -- along with his numerous usual trucker ball caps -- in the wine aisle. He said he had similar flags for Trump, but they sold out quickly. He expects to get more in soon however. (Photo by Don Richeson.)

 

Have you seen a sight that bugs you, captures your imagination or makes you wonder what’s going on? Tell us about it. Send email to editor@msgr.com or call 706-485-3501, ext. 418.

Sat
06
Aug

Putnam schools off to 'wonderful' start

Pupils in Brandy Parham’s K-4 classroom portray a flood of emotions shortly after school started Monday when lining up to leave from the playground. They include, from left, Taylor Boone, Kennedy Coney covering her ears to block the sounds of Charles Jones’ crying, Ava Gibson, Ayden Porter and Jaxon Phillips clowning for the camera, and Daniel Mendez trying to figure out what the crying is about.  (Photo by Lynn Hobbs.)

Visit related Messenger photo gallery:

https://msgr.smugmug.com/organize/Putnam-County-students-return/i-v8sqMHX

 

By Lynn Hobbs / Staff

EATONTON -- The first day of the 2016-2017 school year was Monday, Aug. 1 for Putnam County Charter School System students. Superintendent Eric Arena said, “By all reports, we had a wonderful start to this school year.”

Thu
04
Aug

Eatonton drugstore stickup man gets 40 years

 James Anthony Baker

By Lynn Hobbs / Staff

EATONTON -- A man who robbed an Eatonton pharmacist of prescription drugs at gunpoint pleaded guilty in Putnam County Superior Court Tuesday and asked forgiveness for his wrongdoing.

Judge E. Trenton Brown III sentenced James Anthony Baker to 40 years, the first 12 to be served in prison and the rest on probation, banishment from the Ocmulgee Judicial Circuit for the duration of his probation, and prohibited him from making contact with any of the victims.

On Nov. 7, 2015, Baker walked into Shoppers Pharmacy on South Jefferson Avenue in Eatonton just a few moments after the store opened that morning. His face masked with a scarf, Baker brandished a .38 revolver handgun and demanded ... 

Wed
03
Aug

City of Eatonton eyes tax hike

By Lynn Hobbs / Staff

EATONTON -- It’s budget time for local governments, which means officials are mulling over their budgets and considering tax rates.

City taxes

The City of Eatonton has announced a proposed property tax increase of more than 27 percent over the rollback rate, according to a notice from City Administrator Gary Sanders. For 2016, the proposed city millage rate will be 9.50; the 2015 rate was 7.466 mills.

The increase is due to:

Mon
01
Aug

ViziTech enhances Eatonton's image

ViziTech USA President Stewart Rodeheaver, standing, gives a July 20 update on his Eatonton-based company’s progress to members of the Eatonton-Putnam Tourism Arts Heritage Partnership. (Photo by Lynn Hobbs.)

By Lynn Hobbs / Staff

EATONTON -- Even though his company is small, there is no doubt it contributes in a big way to the local economy and is introducing Eatonton to big companies, ViziTech USA President Stewart Rodeheaver told members of the Eatonton-Putnam Tourism Arts Heritage Partnership Board of Directors July 20.

Rodeheaver is one of several local business owners or organization leaders the directors have planned to hear from in the coming months, according to discussion at their June meeting.

Wed
27
Jul

Two dogs attack, severely injure woman in yard of her Eatonton home

By Lynn Hobbs / Staff

EATONTON -- Two dogs attacked a woman in the yard of her Eatonton home last week, each one separately grabbing an arm of the woman with its teeth and inflicting deep bite wounds. The woman's injuries were severe enough that her husband rushed her to the hospital after her children used a pitchfork to drive off the dogs. The July 19 attack occurred in the 100 block of Access Road, according to an Eatonton Police Department report.

The incident reportedly began when "a white bull dog" approached the woman and her children in their yard and they began petting it. The woman then walked over to the end of a neighbor’s driveway to pick up some trash that was in the driveway. When the woman leaned over to pick it the garbage, a second dog, described as “a brown bull dog” ran out from under the porch, barking and growling at the woman.

Wed
27
Jul

Marshalls may donate dilapidated Big Chick eyesore to city, if it agrees to tear it down

The address of the old vacant dilapidated Big Chick building is officially listed 104 Oconee St., but it seems to more face East Sumter Street in downtown Eatonton in a sort of gateway spot (where Oconee Street intersects with East Sumter Street). (Photo by Don Richeson.)

(Editor's note: This is an updated version of the story that appeared originally in the July 21 print edition. That version contained two factual errors, which are not present in this online version.)

By Lynn Hobbs / Staff

EATONTON -- The Eatonton City Council discussed the dilapidated Big Chick building at its regular meeting on July 18.

Councilor Chuck Haley said that Jim and Nancy Marshall had considered donating the Big Chick property on East Sumter Street to the city, on the condition that the city would demolish the building. Councilors discussed options of what to do with the property. The only idea mentioned was to make it a green space. Putting a fountain there had been discussed in the past, Haley said, but was declined due to safety/liability concerns.

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