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General news and features

Work underway at Main Street's "old blue building"

 napa-building-bricking 2722


The “Old Blue NAPA Building” hasn’t been blue in more than a year and hasn’t been a NAPA Auto Parts in a decade. Now the corner building on Main Street has a new owner who plans to renovate the building. Above, workers build a new facade and exterior wall with 100-year-old bricks Friday morning, May 22. 

     For over 10 years the large building at the corner of Main Street and Church Street, arguably downtown’s most conspicuous structure, has sat vacant. 

But mid-morning Tuesday,  the building’s new owner Luke Copeland was inside tending to business with an appraiser. 

Find out what the plans are for the Main Street building in our print or online editions.


Ball Ground man dies in off-road accident


From Cherokee Sheriff's Office

Cherokee Sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to an off road accident that occurred on the McGraw Ford Wildlife Management Area off Highway 372 near Ball Ground at approximately 2:30 a.m. Wednesday morning. James Padgett Jr., 28 years old of Ball Ground, was driving his Jeep Cherokee on steep trails with two other family members when it was reported that at one point the vehicle stalled on a very steep hill. The two passengers exited the vehicle and Padgett was able to get the vehicle running again.


While trying to get momentum going up the hill, the vehicle slid sideways and careened down a 200 foot embankment. Padgett was ejected from the vehicle. The two family members were not in the vehicle when it went down the embankment. Padgett was life-flighted to Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta where he later died of his injuries.

                The Cherokee Sheriff’s Office Traffic Enforcement Unit is investigating the accident.


Former Jasper resident recalls being shot down over Pearl Harbor



Roy Reid shortly before his 90th birthday with a B-17 Flying Fortress in the background.  (Inset) Twenty-year-old Second Lieutenant Roy Reid at the beginning of World War II.


By Larry Cavender

Contributing Writer


It was a beautiful early Sunday morning, blue skies and clear flying. As a copilot of a plane headed to a tropical island, he was looking forward to some down time. Maybe he'd soak up some sun on a beach and swim in the surf.  Maybe he'd just stroll through town, see the sights, and do some shopping. Maybe, he'd go to a club and listen to some music. Swing music was popular, and "Chattanooga Choo Choo" by Glenn Miller was the number one hit in the nation. It was early December, less than three weeks 'til Christmas, and all seemed right in his world.

Hungry children to be fed this summer

 MUST ministries still needs sack lunches & volunteers 



Want to help hungry kids? MUST Ministries is still looking for lunches and volunteers for their summer program. Contact the Pickens/Cherokee coordinator at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Submitted by Kaye Cagle

Director of Marketing and Public Relations


With 2,000 children on the free and reduced school lunch rolls in Pickens County, the area is vastly underserved during the summer when children are hungry. To help remedy this problem, MUST Ministries is coordinating an effort to feed the children for the third summer in a row.

Filming of Cruise movie underway in Ball Ground



By Larry Cavender

Contributing Writer


The famous Main Street rocks have been removed and most period signage has been erected as Ball Ground readies itself for its hour in the Hollywood spotlight. Filming of a major motion picture Mena starring Tom Cruise was set to begin on Wednesday, May 20th, but the schedule has already been adjusted because of delays and will  start on Thursday, May 21st.

For the filming schedule see the print or online editions