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General news and features

Mary Ann’s to serve free Thanksgiving dinner

Donations, desserts sought
    Owners and employees of Mary Ann’s Country Cooking are giving up part of their own Thanksgiving so needy families can enjoy a traditional Turkey Day feast at no cost.
    “We are really excited to be doing this for the community this year,” said owner Mary Ann Parker, who, along with staff members will prepare and serve turkey, dressing, green beans, mashed potatoes, kernel corn, rolls and dessert from the restaurant on Thanksgiving Day from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Bent Tree artist’s photoshopped wedding portrait goes viral


    Brandy Angel Photography / Photo
    A local graphic artist designed this photoshopped picture of a family on their wedding day in October. The picture includes the image of the couple’s son Lake, age 8, who died of leukemia earlier this year.

     With over 20 million hits and trending #1 on Facebook for a few hours last week, Bent Tree resident Paul Woodward’s photoshop creation has touched the hearts of the nation.
    Woodward, a 63-year-old graphic artist and owner of Royale Graphic Design, was asked to come up with an idea to photoshop a family’s recently-deceased child into their wedding photo.

See full story in this week's print or online editions.

Veterans Day ceremony draws large crowd


  The Veterans Day events enjoyed perfect weather and good attendance this afternoon. Several hundred participants filled the bleachers and spilled into the lawn at Lee Newton Park for the ceremony, which included patriotic music from the PHS Band and Chorus, keynote speaker Steven L. Arnold, a retired U.S. Lieutenant General who has been inducted in the Army Ranger Hall of Fame, taps and a poignant reading of the names of Pickens fallen soldiers. The main stage ceremony was followed by a groundbreaking for the Veterans Memorial Park.

Gas up nearly 10 cents a gallon


November 9- Average retail gasoline prices in Georgia have risen 9.2 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $2.13/g yesterday, according to GasBuddy's daily survey of 5,883 gas outlets in Georgia. This compares with the national average that has increased 2.7 cents per gallon in the last week to $2.22/g, according to gasoline price website

New principal hired for Jasper Elementary


     Jasper, Georgia — The Pickens County School District announces the hiring of Dr. David Wilds as Principal for
Jasper Elementary School.
     Dr. David Wilds is a native of Statesboro, Georgia but has called Houston County home since 2005. He has
served as an Assistant Principal of Instruction at Lake Joy Primary School in Warner Robbins, Georgia, a very
high performing elementary school. Dr. Wilds earned a Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood and a Master of
Educational Leadership from Georgia Southern University. He received an Education Specialist in Educational