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Shooting the Breeze with Sam Thompson



Thompson, an avid mountain and road cyclist, is shown here at a recent - and muddy - cyclocross race. Thompson, a husband and father of young twins, stays busy running a family business while still finding time to enjoy his hobbies. 



You run a family business. What's the name of the business, how long have you been a part of it and what's the best part of owning a family business? The worst?   


The company is called Blue Ridge Mountain Woodcrafts and it is in Ellijay. We manufacture plaques and award components and sell them to trophy shops and other companies all over the country.  

Shooting the Breeze with Jeff Bennett


    Jeff Bennett works in the Pickens County Probate Office and is co-owner of Doughboys Catering and Cakes. He is a lifetime Pickens resident.

You are known for being  involved with theatre and singing in church and at special/ceremonial events. What is your favorite song to sing in public and what is your favorite place to perform and why?

My favorite song to sing in public is “Peace in the Valley” and “Amazing Grace.” Most of the singing I have done has been at funerals, but my favorite place was when I sang with Gospel Quartet “Marble City,” whose members


Shooting the Breeze with Scott Erickson

You recently started a new radio station, WXJR, in Jasper. What got you interested in running a radio station?

    In 2009 I volunteered at the former station WIVL to operate the board for a DJ who had Muscular Dystrophy. Eventually I was given time on Sunday afternoons to host my own show I called “High Fidelity”. At that time I was

Shooting the Breeze with Richard Shaw


     I understand you are a graduate of Oxford and hail from England. How did you wind up in the Big Ridge area of Pickens County?
    I was born in Newcastle upon Tyne, in the north of England. When I was 11, my parents settled in Athens, GA but I remained in Newcastle and completed high school there. I went to university at Oxford and Stanford, then lived in Washington, D.C. and London. In 1984, to be closer to my parents I moved to Atlanta, where I worked in

Shooting the Breeze with Patrick Goode

Patrick Goode talks comics, mythology and the Navy


    Patrick Goode is the owner of Imperial Comics & Games in Jasper. Beyond comic books, Goode hosts Magic: The Gathering and Pokemon tournaments at his Bill Wigington Parkway store. 


At one point you served in the Navy. How long did you serve and what  were your duties? What do you remember most about your time there?


I decided to leave the US Navy as an Aviation Electrician’s Mate 2nd class (Aviation Warfare Specialist) in 2010 after five years. I ran a maintenance work center full of sailors and Marines that deployed in support of fighter/attack squadrons all around the world. We worked on things like aircraft generators, batteries, night vision goggles and flight control panels. I’ll never forget the servicemembers I worked beside and the things we managed to pull off under pressure.