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Showing posts from February, 2015

Great Season Lady Panthers!

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The LHS Lady Panthers played their final game of the season tonight. Although they didn't win, we are proud of the young ladies and a great season of teamwork, dedication and superb athleticism. May the skills you learned on the court serve as a guide in other areas of your lives. You make us #LumbertonProud! Congratulations on a GREAT season.

The Wright Stuff: The Creative & Artistic Side of Lumberton

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Last night, we were given our first opportunity to vote for Michael Simeon on American Idol. I hope everyone got a chance to cast their votes. For the past few days, I've blogged about various talented individuals that calls Lumberton home. Today, I want to focus on another type of talent; creativity. Lumberton has a slew of creative people, just look at the number of hair salons. We have Tangled, Tina's Beauty Salon, C and J Hair, Olive's Beauty Salon. In cade you didn't know, it takes a lot of skill and creativity to be a stylist. I wish the barbering choices in Lumberton was this plentiful but I'm glad 4he beauty industry is well represented in Lumberton. Another talented individual that hails from Lumberton is Chris Wright, owner of Wright's Custom Woodwork. Wright is also the sponsor of the annual winter car and bike show that's held at Wood-Hinton Park. Aside from his philanthropic efforts, Wright is a skilled carpenter. He builds custom signs, benc…

Michael Simeon: The Next American Idol

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It's no secret that there's an abundance of vocally talented individuals that got their start right here in Lumberton, Mississippi. Just the other week, native son, Chris Crain, was among the many musicians attending the Grammy's. When it comes to singing, Lumberton has some of the best vocalists in the world. Just the other night, I learned about another talented vocalist with Lumberton roots. His name is Lucius Antonio Clark and he's currently living in Hong Kong. While researching his body of work, it was obvious that he has mastered his craft. As I listened to his music, "Is It Over" quickly became my favorite. When I decided to blog about musicians from Lumberton, I immediately thought about doing something with Empire in the title since I like the show Empire and one of the main characters was named Luscius. I thought it would be a perfect way to connect an established singer with Michael Simeon, the next American Idol. As you know, Michael Simeon is …

Not Your Average Joe

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Lumberton High School has a history of outstanding athletes. Many go on to college, furthering their athletic and academic careers. I know there's no "I" in team but every year, there's one or more athletes that stands out from the crowd. I don't think there was a game played this season and the sports reporter didn't mention Javier Chavis, Ben McSwain or Joe Arnold. Everytime the Lumberton Panthers step onto a football field, basketball court, tennis court, baseball field or golf course, they're collectively representing their school. But sometimes, there's this one athlete that everyone notices. An athlete that shows good sportsmanship on and off the courts and this year, that athlete is none other than Joe Arnold. Please don't get me wrong, he plays team sports but he's more than a team player he's a leader. I think one of his coaches, Patrick Lee, said it best. "Sometimes you see a kid sign and hope he makes it. I'm so proud…

Hall of Fame Survivor: Kathy Swiley-Combest

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Another resident that makes #LumbertonProud, Kathy Swiley-Combest. When she resided in Lumberton, she played basketball under the direction of Coach Ronnie Cowser. She continued her basketball career at William Carey College. Kathy played with the NOLA Pride Pro Basketball team. Recently, she was inducted into Florida's Coaching Hall of Fame. She coaches basketball and volleyball. Kathy is a breat cancer survivor (5 years) and she never missed a game while enduring chemotherapy treatments. Kathy Swiley-Combest is a good representation of Lumberton and she makes #LumbertonProud. Below is an excerpt from an article written about Kathy after being inducted into the Hall. The article was written by Randy Dickson for the Crestview News Bulletin.OKALOOSA ISLAND — Sports, to Kathy Combest, have always been about family. With that in mind it should come as no surprise that Combest was surrounded by family and a family of friends Wednesday when she was inducted into the All Sports Ass…

Lumberton's Got Talent

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There's a lot of negative things said about the City of Lumberton but the city is comprised of some very talented, caring, gifted people. Some have moved but their foundation was established in Lumberton. We have talented singers, athletes, carpenters, musicians, promoters, etc. that call Lumberton home. We may not be proud of those elected to represent our city but there are residents that represent our city very well. In honor of the national attention our city is getting via Michael Simeon's appearances on American Idol, I thought I would use this week as an opportunity to showcase other talented individuals with ties to Lumberton. Kicking off this series is a talented gymnast, India Rodgers, daughter of Shakita Rodhers and Thomas Holder. I have never attended any of her competitions but I receive updates from her doting grandmother, Miriam R. Holder (retired efucator and former Mayor of Lumberton). India's great grandmother, Linda Cooper, is also a Lumberton re…

Taken for GRANT(ed): Kicking the Can Further Down the Road

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In case you haven't heard, the City of Lumberton is prepared to accept the $2.5 million dollar grant offer to repair water and sewer lines. Somehow, the city that cried broke has managed to finagle a deal that will produce the $625,000 needed to secure this grant. Unfortunately, I don't know the details of the deal since the mayor and board of aldermen had this meeting at 3 pm in lieu of the regular time of 6 pm. Since the notice was posted three hours prior to the meeting, they are holding legal meetings but I wouldn't say the meetings are ethical since they're obviously making an attempt to prevent the public from attending. From what I was told, there were representatives from the ADP, Mississippi Power and the Army Corp of Engineers. Somehow, Winston was able to wrangle enough support to get a loan to secure the payment of $625,000. How much will this political wrangling cost the citizens of Lumberton? This board loves to pass the buck; place blame on the previ…

Making Up Their Own Rules

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I was responding to a comment on the blog and I thought of a question I needed answered by the Public Works Director, Daniel "Danny" Davis. I finished the post and called city hall. Merlene answered the phone and I told her I needed Danny's telephone number. She replied, "I can't give out his number but I can take a message and have him call you back ." I then asked, was Danny's cellphone issued by the City of Lumberton? She replied "yes." Then I asked why couldn't a citizen get the telephone number to a cellphone paid for by the citizens of Lumberton? Merlene then repliied that the cellphone number is for contact with city officials not for citizens. " I then responded by saying, we can contact you and the chief of police but citizens are forbidden to have a telephone number to reach the public works director; the second most problematic department in the city. I also asked, are you his clerk, is that why you can't complete …

Never Make ASSumptions

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Yesterday, around 11:30 am, I navigated past the road closure signs and avoided a wreckless driving code enforcer that apparently was too distracted by his cell phone conversation to notice the stop sign he bypassed, to drive up to the service window at city hall and noticed the closed for lunch sign. I reached into my pocket to retrieve my cell phone, unlike others, I don't talk/text on my cell phone while driving. As I was posting the picture, while still at city hall, I wondered why the clerks didn't stagger their lunch breaks. Just before going to city hall, I stopped at the drive thru window at the bank. The young lady that generally work the window was gone, probably to lunch, but there was someone else there to assist the customers. Again, I wondered why this didn't happen at city hall. Afterwards, I was headed back home. When I pulled into the driveway, I noticed activity on the photo I posted. One comment suggested something may have happened to cause one cler…

Lumberton's Got Talent

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Today, the City of Lumberton was well represented on both the local and national scene. Earlier today, academically and athletically gifted senior quarterback, Joe Arnold, signed with Jones County Community College. Over the years, Arnold represented the City of Lumberton by standing out from the crowd as a leader. Coach Patrick Lee summed it up best. "Sometimes you see a kid sign and hope he makes it. I'm so proud of the fact that I know this guy will make it because he is a quality human being and football is something he is great at and not what degines him as a great person." Joe Arnold has made his parents, family, friends, coaches, teachers and the commumity of Lumberton proud. Arnold has the opportunity to continue carving his niche in this world and I'm certain that he will continue to soar to even greater heights. Tonight, Lumberton was represented on the national level by the talented Michael Simeon. Simeon represented the City of Lumberton by showcasin…

Review of February 3, 2015 Board Meeting: The Extortion Edition

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There were several people that came to make presentations to the board. Before you ask, yes, I Googled them and apparently it's catching on because Alderman McGraw Googled them as well. First on the agenda was John Walker of the Ms. Forestery Commission addressed the board about establishing a Fire Wise organization. The organization allows for grant opportunities. The requirements are as follows: 1. Form a fire wise board, 2. Invest $2/per capita via in-kind services, 3. Complete a community assessment proposal, and 4. Host a fire wise day. Next on the agenda was Russell Heidelberg of Pritchard, AL. He suggested the city take advantage of a program established in 2010 to help the city gain financial stability. The program is processed through the SEC A-plus subsidy program. It uses perferred stock to help fund projects. The program seemed to be a good fit for Lumberton but when Heidelberg outlined the two basic requirements, the board seemed uninterested. The requirements are…

With Liberty and Justice for Some

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Another regular scheduled board meeting will be held tonight or another night of how many laws can the board break in one meeting while disregarding those they're supposed to be representing. Generally, the agenda is ready the Friday before the board meeting. When Stephanie was city clerk, citizens could go to city hall and get a copy of the agenda after noon on the Friday before the meeting. Based on the white out on my water bill, I seriously doubt copies of the agenda were delivered this past Friday. As a matter of fact, the board may not get a copy of the agenda until today. I don't know if that's a tactic to keep citizens in the dark about those listed on the agenda or just another failure to do ones job. I guess it really doesn't matter since the agendas aren't usually beneficial for the city. It just boggles the mind that a person, allegedly, has time to print copies of my blog and disperse them to the board but never has enough time to print water bill…