Get Adobe Flash player


E. coli "always a threat in lakes and rivers," experts say




 As the summer heats up, we often run to our favorite swimming hole for some relief. But experts say when we swim in lakes, rivers and streams we need to be aware that no matter how clean the water may appear, "Recreational Water Illnesses" like E. coli are always a threat.

After the family of a 10-month-old Pickens boy told us he contracted the E. coli bacteria at a Gordon County lake, we spoke with local health and environmental professionals to get some insight into ways we can keep our families safe this swimming season. See complete story in this week's print edition. Now on sale at convenience stores throughout the area.

Jasper hiker passes halfway point of Appalachian Trail

“After so many years, a dream has started,” retired Jasper veterinarian Mike McGhee posted on his online trail journal  March 27 of this year.

Mike McGhee, who operated Wayside Animal Clinic for many years before selling it, was a little beyond the halfway point of the Appalachian Trail, when he spoke to the Progress by cell phone earlier in June.

From near where the 2,181-mile trail crosses into New Jersey, the hiker said he had enjoyed the first 1,000 miles of walking but wasn’t sure he would want to do it again.

He carries the cell phone for emergencies, but because of limited recharging opportunities rarely uses it.

The trail, which begins near Amicalola Falls on Springer Mountain will end in Maine. Along the way, the trail passes through the states of Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine.

McGhee said he was doing well physically and mentally after hiking more than 1,000 miles of the trail. His only complaint on the day he called, was his feet were really battered and bruised after completing the Pennsylvania section known for  mile after mile of jagged rocks.

Green Building Project showcases environmental can do

Paul Peterson shows his niece some of the edible plants Kleinberger incorporated into her landscape around the “Green Building Adventure” office. From heirloom tomatoes, blueberry bushes, and fruit trees to blackberries, salad greens, and snap peas, the garden features a variety of hearty vegetables and fruits.


The idea behind making sure we leave minimal “carbon footprints” on our environment is not new but Vered Kleinberger may be the only person you know who has taken the idea to a completely new level locally with her Green Building Adventure.

“I believe it’s important to reduce our impact on the planet as much as possible and, although it is extremely difficult to have zero impact on the environment, the GBA portrays methods of building and living that can minimize effects on the planet,” Kleinberger said.

The “adventure” started over a year ago when Kleinberger’s not-for-profit Education Excursions organization needed larger office space and storage. Instead of renting Kleinberger decided to build beside her Twin Mountain Lakes home. With the help of around 40 people who pitched in their time, talents and lots of dedication, she constructed a completely new building from deconstructed barns, old homes, leftover building supplies and natural elements. Kleinberger also incorporated edible landscaping and rain barrels for daily watering needs.

Last Saturday, Kleinberger held an open house to showcase the now “almost” completed building and thank all those who helped along the way. In thanking them, she began crying before she could even get the words out.

“I didn’t know I was going to do that,” she said. “I’m not a crier either. This has been an incredible year. I wanted to do this to show people that there are other ways to build. You can use recycled materials and not have to cut down trees, so spread the word. And there’s still more work to be done.”

Jasper Lions #1 in Georgia

Some of the members of the Jasper Lions Club gathered to mark their #1 designation.


By Darlene Handy,

Jasper Lions Club

Thank you Pickens County!  Once again the Jasper Lions Club came home from the State Convention being named the #1 Lions Club in the State of Georgia. In addition, our club received nine 1st place awards and seven 2nd place awards.

Receiving these awards make us feel good, but the greatest feeling is assisting those in our community. This would not be possible without the support of our merchants, banks, dealerships, radio/TV stations, the Pickens County Progress and all of our generous citizens.

Congratulations to Lion Leslie Miller for being named the #1 Lions Club Secretary in the State of Georgia and for winning 1st place for producing the best monthly newsletter for our District, which comprises 44 clubs.

In addition, our Pickens High School LEO Club submitted two awards and won 1st place for their scrapbook and 2nd place for the Leo Club essay submitted by Sawyer Henderson. The subject for the essay was “Today’s Youth Meet(ing) the Challenge of Volunteerism.”  This is the sixth year that Sawyer has submitted a winning essay on the State level.

The Jasper Lions Club provides more than vision and hearing assistance, which is through Good Samaritan Health and Wellness Center and the Georgia Lions Lighthouse. We also work with CARES, provide toys for children at Christmas, sponsor the Health Fair, work with Special Olympics, provide 4th of July events and much more.  This year our Alert Team assisted the Red Cross with disaster relief by donating tarps, water and Walmart gift certificates.

If you would like more information regarding the Jasper Lions Club and/or would like to join us in our efforts of assisting the less fortunate, please visit our Website or call 706-253-LION (5466).


Information on Jasper's July 4th Celebration

By Doug Brooks

Jasper Lion

Since 1949 the Jasper Lions Club has developed and sponsored an Independence Day Celebration for the citizens of Pickens County. Lion Tony Pishnery is chairing the 2011 Celebration Committee and the theme this year is America, Free and Proud. Articles in the Progress issues of June 2 and 16 carried details of the 2011 Independence Day Celebration to be held here on July 4.

Time to remind those desiring to be part of the Celebration parade to get applications in.  Applications must be submitted no later than Friday, July 1.  They can be obtained at the Chamber of Commerce, Moore Furniture Company on Main Street or on www.jasperlions. com

Entry fee for the parade will be $10 and prizes will $50 for 1st place float and $25 for 2nd place float. Prizes will be awarded at the bandstand during the opening ceremonies and winners must claim their prizes at that time.

Previous articles have included details of activities at Lee Newton Park on the 4th and next week’s article will include a final wrap-up of the activities.

An Independence Day Celebration would not be complete without fireworks. This 2011 Celebration will end with a spectacular fireworks display that will get underway at 10 on the 4th. Many thanks to Renasant Bank in Jasper for sponsoring them this year! Fireworks technical support will be provided by Donnie Craig, Pickens County Sheriff’s Office.

Peachtree Rides Carnival attractions will be at the park from Wednesday, June 29, through Monday, July 4. Openings will be Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at 5; Saturday and Sunday at 1; and at 11 a.m. on Monday, the 4th. “Armband” (cost $20) nights will be June 29 and 30; July 1 and 3. No armbands on the July 2 or 4.

So, make plans for you and your family and friends to be here in Jasper with us during the 2011 Independence Day Celebration.