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Staff reports

Screven part of Georgia Cities’ bus tour of downtowns

The Georgia Municipal Association and the Georgia Cities Foundation will again explore the “Heart & Soul” of eight Georgia cities along the coast of Georgia on a three day bus tour in April. The bus tour, April 18-20, will show state agency heads, business leaders, downtown developers and philanthropists ways in which cities are revitalizing and capitalizing on their downtowns.
Participants will learn about downtown programs in Dublin, Sylvania, Statesboro, Hinesville, Jesup, St. Marys, Savannah and Metter.

New policy: Optim opts out of its smoking areas

Optim Medical Center – Screven is starting the New Year off by kicking a bad habit from its campus area.
Starting Jan. 9 the hospital and any buildings related to Optim will no longer allow visitors, employees, and patients to use tobacco products on the premises.
“Our goal is to treat the whole patient, both mentally and physically,” said Hospital Administrator Brad Trower.
“Allowing employees, physicians, patients, visitors, or other patrons to use tobacco products on the medical center’s campus is contrary to Optim’s mission.”

Tickets to the annual chamber banquet now available

The 38th Annual Banquet of the Screven County Chamber of Commerce will be held at the First Baptist Church Jan. 19. Tickets will be available to members for $25 per person and non-members $30 per person. The evening’s speaker is Dominique Halaby, D.P.A., director of the Bureau of Business Research and Economic Development at Georgia Southern University. Reserved seating with a table of eight seats costs $300 for rows one through three and $250 for rows four and five.

Nothing finer than winning a recliner

Pamela Lowery used a strong finish in the final NASCAR race of the season to win the grand prize recliner from Farmer’s home Furniture. Lowery (seated) rests in her new recliner that will provide some relaxing moments during next year’s Sylvania Telephone NASCAR Excitement Contest. Standing next to Lowery is Jeff Flanders, manager of the local furniture store on West Ogeechee Street in Sylvania. Farmer’s annually provides the grand prize recliner for the season-long contest.

Early Christmas gift

Gary Youngblood is seen here holding up his Pigskin Picker contest entry that earned him $200. Youngblood got all the games correct and the tie-breaker points exactly right too to collect the Sylvania Telephone’s contest biggest honor. Also, Pamela Lowery tallied the most points during the full NASCAR season in the Telephone's NASCAR Excitement Contest to win a new recliner from Farmer's home Furniture in Sylvania.

More events to get you into the holiday spirit

The annual Christmas Extravaganza is this evening, but more events are planned for the holidays. A Christmas Extravaganza musical afternoon is planned for Sunday at 3 p.m. at the outdoor theatre. Joiner Anderson Funeral Home will honor those who passed away during year at 1:30 p.m. Sunday. Thompson Strickland Waters Funeral Home will have a ceremony Dec. 11.

Please don’t miss the chance to help others

As we head into Thanksgiving and then Christmas, take a moment to count your blessings and think about others. The United Way of Screven County is in the middle of its annual campaign as all the money raised stay in Screven County. A total of 20 local agencies benefit from the money raised by the annual United Way drive. Please consider making a donation or pledge to the cause. The United Way of Screven County can be reached on the telephone at 912-564-5770 or a check can be mailed to P.O. Box 27, Sylvania, GA 30467.

Extra, Extra: Our intro to Christmas comes in a week

The excitement is building rapidly for this year’s annual Screven County Christmas Extravaganza set to take place on Dec. 1 from 5 to 8 p.m.
Santa will start off this year’s celebration promptly at 5 p.m. with a joyous parade that will circle the downtown area. The parade is sure to bring out the child in all of us with costume characters and plenty of holiday participants.

Barrow announces new VA outreach clinic

U.S. Rep. John Barrow announced in Sylvania and then in Statesboro Nov. 10 that the Veterans Affairs has approved the opening of a Veterans Outreach Clinic in Bulloch County.
 “After years of working with local veterans to advocate for the approval of a Veterans Outreach Clinic in Statesboro, I am happy to report that the Department of Veterans Affairs has approved,” Barrow said. “As the population in Statesboro continues to grow, the need for a local VA clinic grows even more urgent.”

New traditions add ‘Extra’ to Christmas Extravaganza

 The Christmas season gets off to a festive start for Screven County Dec. 1 from 5 to 8 p.m.
This year’s annual Christmas Extravaganza promises to be the best event yet.
Some exciting new activities have been added to this year’s festivities that are sure to inspire holiday spirit in everyone.
A new tradition will be launched this year with the lighting of the downtown Christmas tree by Mayor Margaret Evans. The public is urged to come and witness this magical event immediately following the Christmas parade.

Jacobson succeeds Lawn to become new chamber director

The Screven County Chamber of Commerce has appointted Wendy Jacobson as its new executive director.
Jacobson succeeds Brooke Lawn.
Since 2006, Jacobson most recently served as director of information technology for the business and finance unit at Georgia Southern University and brings with her a wealth of experience in technology and business management.
In addition to her experience in higher education, Jacobson also brings with her extensive experience working in the retail and manufacturing sectors.

Kile, Mock show skills, claim state championships

Elisabeth Kile and Triston Mock from Screven County Middle School captured gold at the 2011 State Special Olympics Fall Games, Oct. 21- 23, in Dalton, Ga. 
During opening ceremony, Kile and Mock took part and presented a American Flag, which was flown at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad Iraq on Sept. 11, 2011. Baghdad is where Kile’s father, Terry Kile, is working as an explosives detection dog handler. 

FCCLA shows its imagination

Imagine winning first place in a state competition.
The SCHS chapter of Family, Career and Community Leaders of America placed first in the FCCLA T-shirt contest sponsored by Georgia FCCLA at the Fall Leadership Conference Sept. 22- 23 at the FFA –FCCLA Center in Covington.
More than 75 T-shirt design entries were voted on by over 1,200 FCCLA attendees from across the state. Using the 2011-2012 National FCCLA theme, “Imagination in Action,” SCHS FCCLA members competed in Membership Recruitment campaign and T-shirt and lapel pin design.

Sylvania Huddle House investigated for paying below minimum wage

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division investigated 30 Huddle House locations across three states with more than 120 employees  and found many violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
Minimum and overtime back wages totaled $60,594 which will be paid to 128 employees and $48,317 in civil money penalties for repeat and child labor violations.
The Sylvania restaurant is one of seven stores owned by Dan King Jr.

Hiltonia receives grant for paving

The City of Hiltonia has successfully competed for and received a Community Development Block Grant for $ 431,423 from the Georgia Department of Community Affairs.
The grant is for the purpose of  paving and installing drainage on Southside Drive in Hiltonia.
The grant award was presented to the city by Commissioner Mike Beatty and was accepted on behalf of the city by Mayor Gerry Forehand and Wesley Parker, engineer for the project in a ceremony conducted by the Georgia Department of Community Affairs at The Marriott Macon City Center in Macon Sept. 16.

October is ‘Breast Cancer Awareness Month’

October is “Breast Cancer Awareness Month” and this edition of the Sylvania Telephone printed on pink newsprint definitely draws attention to the serious subject.
In an effort to promote awareness for and advance toward a cure for breast cancer and other cancers, Screven County’s Relay For Life committee will host a chili cookout Saturday, Oct. 8, beginning at 5 p.m. at the Cail Community Center.

Screven County deputy "Ms. Kat" shot

A beloved Screven County deputy was shot in the leg early Monday afternoon during a prison transport from Chatham County to Sylvania.
Kat Griffin was taken to Memorial Medical Center in Savannah for treatment. The prisoner was apprehended and is in custody in the Screven County Jail.
Griffin was the first African-American female hired as a deputy with the Screven County Sheriff's Office. She is a school resource officer for the elementary, middle and high schools in the county.

Top-ranked Eagles visit Elon Saturday

Georgia Southern (3-0) heads to North Carolina in search of its first 3-0 start in the Southern Conference since 2004 when they face Elon (3-1, 1-0) at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1. The No. 1-ranked Eagles hit the road for the second time this season and have the opportunity to remain atop the Southern Conference standings.
“We are in the meat of our conference schedule now and have to travel up to Elon. What a great job Jason Swepson and his staff are doing,” said head coach Jeff Monken.

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