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GEMA wants you to prepare before tornadoes strike

are-you-preparedGeorgia tornado activity peaks March through May, making now the time to get ready

(ATLANTA) – Last spring, a series of tornadoes struck Georgia, killing 15 people and injuring 143 across the state. More recently, a powerful EF-3 tornado touched down in Gordon County on Dec. 22. The storm injured several people, damaged homes and businesses, and disrupted travel. Downed trees and power lines caused the closure of I-75 and several other streets and highways. In November 2010, a tornado devastated a Buford neighborhood, and in 2009, more than 50 tornadoes wreaked havoc statewide, landing Georgia in the top five nationwide for tornado activity.


Right lane of 575 between exits 24 and 27 closed today

WHEN: Monday, February 27, 2012, from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m.

WHERE: Interstate 575 southbound at Sharpe Mountain Creek Bridge in Cherokee County

WHAT:  Motorists should expect a single lane closure on I-575 southbound between Exit 27/State Route (SR) 5 Business and Exit 24/Airport Drive in Cherokee County.

The right lane of I-575 South between mile markers 26 and 25.8 will be closed today from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m.  This lane closure is necessary for Georgia DOT’s

Maintenance crews to work on sealing the joints of the bridge on Interstate 575 over Sharpe Mountain Creek .  This maintenance operation and the lane closure it

necessitates are weather permitting and subject to change.

Art, prize money and a good cause

Application deadline for Whimsical Event approaches 

Take one part art, one part prize money and awards, and one part great cause and you get Burnt Mountain Trading Company’s 3rd Annual Art Contest and Fundraiser to support the Boys and Girls Clubs of Pickens County.

Make plans now to be a part of this wonderful competition that offers prize money for the top entrants, $150 for best in show and $100 for first place in three categories. This year’s theme is Fun-Funky-Fabulous and however you interpret, envision, or construct your project is up to you. From painting, wall art, sculpture, pottery, 2-D, 3-D, yard art, fiber, or anything else, the world is your oyster. So start creating and bring your artwork to Burnt Mountain Trading Company no later than April 1st. Creations must be no larger than two feet by two feet (give or take a few inches is fine), not including stands. All artwork must be original work by you.

See application below

Dr. Suess' Lorax viewers get free seedlings

     theloraxThe Georgia Forestry Commission is giving away 60-thousand tree seedlings statewide in celebration of the health and sustainability of Georgia forests and the movie, "The Lorax." In conjunction with the release of Dr. Seuss' classic tale about ecosystem awareness, the Georgia Forestry Commission will be distributing free seedlings grown at its Flint River nursery on the film's opening day, Friday, March 2. In addition, beginning March 3, geocaching enthusiasts will be able to search for bags of tree seeds hidden in Georgia's state parks.

     "This is a great opportunity for Georgians to take pride in how healthy our state's forests are," said Robert Farris, Director of the Georgia Forestry Commission. "While the Lorax has trouble on his hands, we in Georgia have abundant, working forest lands cleaning our air and water, providing jobs, wildlife habitat and products, and being sustainably managed for generations to come."

     On March 2, Georgia Forestry Commission representatives will provide complimentary tree seedlings to patrons who've seen "The Lorax" at Georgia Theatre Company theatres, Carmike Cinemas and other theatres throughout the state. A coupon to exchange for the seedlings will be given to movie-goers when their ticket is purchased at the box office or online (while supplies last). A list of participating theatres can be found at GFC’s partners in conservation and education, the Georgia Forestry Association and the Georgia Forestry Foundation, made the purchase of seedlings for this special promotion possible.

     The Georgia Forestry Commission is also collaborating with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources to stock 43 state park geocaching locations with approximately 15 packs each of loblolly pine tree seeds. Geocaching is the popular recreational activity of hunting for and finding a hidden object by means of GPS coordinates posted on a website. A logbook is in each cache for finders to record a comment. In addition, Georgia DNR has an account for participants to sign-in and leave comments at

     For more information about these activities and services of the Georgia Forestry Commission, For more information about the Georgia Forestry Association and the Georgia Forestry Foundation, visit

Print/e-edition only

citytreesCity cuts unique tree deal – The City of Jasper has recently purchased over 1,300 trees at what city officials say is a rock bottom price. The trees will be planted around Jasper and in the new Hood Road area park when after ground is broken on the project. Page 6A.

Homegrown Abe – A local man has been an active Abraham Lincoln impersonator for the last 30 years. He has recently taken off on a road trip in the Abe Mobile to teach school kids across the nation about one of the most revered founding fathers. Hear about his journey from the perspective of Mrs. Lincoln in this week’s travelogue. Page 11A.

Ga. Tech student charged – The Georgia Tech student who was involved in a double fatal accident last November off Burnt Mountain Road has been charged with two counts of vehicular homicide. Page 1A.

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