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New mobile app helps Georgia outdoorsmen

PocketRanger(Social Circle, GA) March 7, 2011- Enhance your outdoor experience by

downloading the new mobile app from the Georgia Department of Natural

Resources.  The Official Georgia DNR Pocket Ranger® Mobile Tour Guide is

offered free and is on-target for all hunters, fishermen and outdoorsmen

according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife

Resources Division.

The Pocket Ranger® is an all-encompassing app that allows you to

explore the outdoors like you never have before. Pocket Ranger® gives

users full access to information for each of Georgia’s DNR

facilities-look up hunting regulations, retrieve facility maps, buy

licenses and permits and stay current on our events. The app’s

advanced GPS section allows users to track, mark, record and share their

explorations and discoveries easily with other Pocket Ranger® users as

well as family and friends.

This new app, developed for IPhone and Android platforms, uses some of

the most advanced GPS smartphone technology to provide users with

valuable features that will enhance their visits to Wildlife Management

Areas (WMA), Public Fishing Areas (PFA) and other state owned lands. The

app-developed collaboratively between Georgia’s Department of Natural

Resources and ParksByNature Network-is available for free to smartphone

users, and can be downloaded by visiting Apple iTunes, Android Market or

“The new Pocket Ranger® Mobile Tour Guide makes exploring Georgia’s

outdoor areas easier than ever,” said Dan Forster, Wildlife Resources

Director. “It has an activity search feature which allows you to find

the closest place to hunt, fish, ride horses, bird watch or just explore

trails.  It also includes detailed descriptions of each area with all

amenities available at the site, current weather reports and maps for

WMAs, PFAS and all state owned lands.”

GPS technology plays a pivotal role in the app’s safety functions,

including a safety alert feature that informs designated contacts on

your phone of your GPS coordinates in case of an emergency.

“I am very excited about the new safety alert feature which will

assist us finding your location if you are lost,” said Forster.

“This technology will aid our Conservation Rangers in providing

assistance if needed.”

This spring, Pocket Ranger® introduces GeoChallenge, a new feature that

includes geoquest activities as well as games. Enjoy the fun, new ways

to navigate, learn and explore your favorite areas by completing the

various challenges. The challenges and quests will be added and updated


With an extensive list of features, social sharing options and safety

functions, the Official Georgia DNR Pocket Ranger® Mobile Tour Guide is

one of the most highly developed, free apps on the market. Download it

today to begin the fun!


Cat found at Canton Starbucks tests positive for rabies

Members of public should take precautions if they had contact with kitten


Canton (GA) March 8, 2012 ~ Cherokee County Environmental Health officials announced today that a rabid kitten, which reportedly was in contact with a variety of people in Cherokee County just prior to its death, has now tested positive for rabies.


The public is alerted to call their local environmental health office or medical care provider if they believe they may have been exposed to the kitten, described as being gray-striped with medium-length fur and located at the Starbucks at 1353 Riverstone Parkway in Canton during February 22 through March 1, 2012.


On Thursday, March 1, the stray kitten was picked up by a young woman at the Riverstone Parkway Starbucks, where it had been touched by an unspecified number of people. The woman took the kitten to her home in Canton that day, where several other people handled it.


Jasperse introduces legislation to repeal student weigh-ins


“It’s a basic gut thing:  Are we going to let schools be parents or are we going to let parents be parents?”           

- Rep. Rick Jasperse

State Rep. Rick Jasperse introduced legislation last week in the Georgia General Assembly to repeal the SHAPE Act which requires students in public schools to be weighed and their body fat calculated and reported to parents.

Schools are expected to begin weighing students this academic period. Jasperse, noted his house bill would not come to a vote this year and definitely not in time to stop anything during this academic year.

Movie shoot to improve Jasper City ball fields


Also from council meeting, Sunday alcohol sales to be on ballot

Following a request by Kroger, Jasper city council members on Monday approved a measure to allow city voters to chose whether or not to have Sunday alcohol sales by the package in area stores. Voters have previously approved Sunday sales in restaurants within the city limits. Jasper Attorney Bill Pickett said the referendum would likely be on the ballot in the November general election.

A history of Pickens twisters


The above map shows paths of all tornadoes reported here since 1950. This image originated from although the Progress has added the 2011 tornado path. 1.) 1975   2.) 1985   3.) 2011  

4.) 1994–F-3   5.) 1994–F-4   6.) 2002   7.) 1959   8.) 1974   9.) 2009. See tornado info chart on page 17A of the print edition.

My fear of tornadoes didn’t develop until about five years ago.

Before that, when I lived in Cherokee and Cobb counties, tornado watches and warnings came and went without me noticing, and I wish it could be that way again.

In the recent past, I have been caught in a few really bad storms, and I have become mom to two children, the combination of which, I assume, is to blame for this intrusive, irrational phobia of mine. Now, adding insult to injury, I live on the west end of Pickens, the place I’ve heard natives call tornado alley.

Last week, when the first storm that tore up the Midwest started marching our way, I could feel the anxiety settling in, and just as quickly I got angry with myself. While driving back to the office from lunch that Wednesday, I brainstormed ways to confront my fear. This story was spawned from those thoughts.

See this week's print or e-edition to find out more about the history of tornadoes in Pickens, which includes a chart with detailed information about each tornado here since 1950.