Manufacturing Day, Oct. 4, is a celebration of modern manufacturing meant to inspire the next generation of manufacturers. In honor of that, Bevill State Community College’s Vehicle Technology and Repair (VTR) students from the Hamilton campus and Electrical Systems Technology (ELT) students from the Fayette and Hamilton campuses were invited to tour the Mercedes-Benz plant on Thursday, Oct. 3.
The Fayette City Council approved its fiscal year 2020 budget during its Sept. 24 meeting. A local resident, Bobby Avant, led the council in prayer prior to the beginning of the meeting. He also addressed the council concerning the purchase of land from Norfolk-Southern Railroad for the proposed Rails-to-Trails. “My first observation is that the price the railroad is charging is outrageous,” Avant said.”The fact that a donor has come forth to help with the purchase does not make it any less egregious. Building the trail is also based on getting future grants that may not happen.”
Qualifying for next year’s primaries and general election opens Tuesday, Oct. 8 and will end on Friday, Nov. 8. Local offices on the ballot will include county commission seats in districts two, four, five and six. Fayette County Board of Education seats up for election will include districts four and five.
The annual Frog Level Festival returns this weekend to downtown Fayette. The festival will open at 4 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 4 with entertainment provided on the big stage by B.J. Reeves. At 5:45 p.m., The Chris Simmons Band will take the stage, followed by “Nationwide Coverage” at 7:30 p.m. Nationwide Coverage will feature The Tuscaloosa Horns and Fayette native Mart Avant. Avant is always a crowd favorite when he performs in the Fayette area. On Saturday, Oct. 5., there will be a Cruise-In in downtown Fayette beginning at 8 a.m. Also at 8 a.m., the Bama Dancers will entertain the crowd.
Fines for overdue items are now a thing of the past for Fayette County Memorial Library. On Aug. 1, the library quietly implemented a new fine-free policy for its patrons. This change removes a barrier for people who cannot afford fines and wish to use the library, and it ensures that all members of our community have equitable access to library books and materials.
The Tigers’ Jason Robinson ran for 207 yards and three touchdowns on 14 carries as Fayette defeated Sipsey Valley 34-26. Fayette received the opening kickoff and following an exchange of punts, the Tigers moved 76 yards in seven plays for the first score of the game. Carter Sanford threw a six-yard touchdown pass to Kaleb Owens to complete the drive and following a Kent Bagwell kick for the extra point, Fayette led 7-0 with 5:28 remaining in the first quarter.
The Hubbertville Lions welcomed the Hackleburg Panthers to Wiley Hollingsworth Stadium on Friday night and won an old-time slugfest by the score of 71-48. The total points scored tied for the 16th most points scored in the history of Alabama high school football in one game. Ironically, Hubbertvile was also involved in a game with the second highest point total in history, as Parrish defeated Hubbertville 81-58 in 2003. The Panthers won the coin toss and deferred. Brodie Porter advanced Caden Jones’ opening kick eight yards, setting the Lions’ offense up at its 40-yard line.
The Berry Wildcats returned to Fred Webster Stadium to welcome the Donoho Falcons in the third-ever meeting between the two schools and the first to be played in Berry. The defenses from both teams set the tone of the game. In a game that would go back and forth all night, Donoho got the 17–14 victory on a late field goal. Donoho won the toss and elected to receive the opening kickoff. Donoho put together an 11-play drive deep into Wildcat territory.
On the surface, Hester Whittaker, a fifth grade student at Fayette Elementary School, appears to be one of the nicest, most polite 10-year old boy in the world. He has a genuine smile and charm that seem to mask the fierce competitor he becomes on a karate sparring mat. Make no mistake, he is still nice and polite to his opponents. He smiles at the beginning of the match and he is still smiling when the referee raises his hand in victory. Whittaker recently traveled with his parents to Lynchburg, Va. to compete in the “State Games of America.”
Beginning on Oct. 12, area code dialing will become mandatory for all calls made within the traditional “205” area code region of the state. Earlier this year, it was announced that an “overlay” area code would be implemented within the 205 area code region. The new area code is “659” and will serve the same region as the 205 area code currently serves.
50 years ago in November of 1968, Herb Lowe placed an ad in the local newspaper seeking people interested in forming a new Episcopal church. Four people responded: Toni Robertson, Hugh and Edna Avant and Dot Crutcher. From these humble beginnings, the worshiping community of St. Michael’s was born. In the years that followed, the fledgling congregation gathered in a store front before building the current church up the hill west of Five Points on 10th Street in the early 80’s.
The Meek High Tigers had been preparing all week to face the Berry Wildcats Friday, Sept. 20, for homecoming. Even though it was a close game, Berry handed Meek the defeat 36-30.
Meek kicked off to Berry to start the game. The Wildcats immediately started to move the ball and after 41 yards, got the first touchdown with Johnathan Locke running the ball over the goal line. The PAT was no good, but Berry was up 6-0.
Hubbertville traveled to Millport Friday night to face the South Lamar Stallions. The Lions won the coin toss and received the opening kickoff. The opening possession was shortlived, with Gage Key punting the ball away to the Stallions’ offense at the Lions’ 45-yard line. South Lamar wasted little time taking the ball downfield, with Herachio Washington and Christopher Sides swapping runs on the drive. Facing second and three at the 14-yard line, Sides took the ball across the goal for the score with 8:10 remaining in the opening quarter. The PAT kick was no good.
The Fayette Community Foundation will soon begin accepting grant applications for 2019.
During the Fayette City Council’s Sept. 10 meeting, a motion was approved to remove a proposed ordinance from consideration concerning Sunday alcohol sales in the city. All council members were present for the meeting. Councilman Jason Cowart made a motion to remove the ordinance from consideration, and the motion was seconded by Councilman Eddy Campbell. The motion was approved unanimously.
The Fayette County Board of Education adopted its fiscal year 2020 budget and approved personnel changes during its Sept. 12 meeting. All board members were present for the meeting.
Proposed revenues included in the FY2020 budget are as follows: State, $15,657,751; Local, $4,747,377; Federal, $2,907,956; and other revenues, $110,873 for a total of $23,423,957.
The John Clifford Grimsley House, built in 1916, is one of the most iconic and recognizable houses in Fayette County. The house was recently placed on the National Register of Historic Places, and a ceremony was held on Sept. 13 recognizing its designation. The John Clifford Grimsley House is currently owned by two of John Clifford Grimsley’s granddaughters, Becky Matkov and Liz Venable.
The Fayette County HOSA - Future Health Professionals, enjoyed its second visit to the International Leadership Conference (ILC) with over 11,520 in attendance. The 42nd International Leadership Conference was held in Orlando, Fla,. on June 19-22. HOSA was represented by 54 chartered associations including Canada, American Samoa, Puerto Rico and China.
The Fayette County Commission held its regularly scheduled meeting on Sept. 9. All commissioners with the exception of Commissioner Shane Hughes, were present for the meeting. Also present were Commission Chairman Mike Freeman and County Administrator John Gordon. At the beginning of the meeting, Randy Slay, chairman of the Fayette County Conservation District, presented the commission with a new, full-color wall map of the county. The map is very detailed and Slay said that, “It is the best map that has ever been made of the county.”
The Berry Town Council approved its fiscal year 2020 budget during its Sept. 9 meeting. Councilman Chris Rice was absent, with all other council members present for the meeting.
Berry Town Clerk Marie McClusky said that sales tax and business license fees have increased during the past year. Court revenue was projected to be approximately the same as last year, with interest for the general fund slightly higher due to an interest rate increase on the town’s certificate of deposit. Other revenues for the town were projected to be similar to the revenues from the previous year.
The Cordova Blue Devils visited Fayette on a hot, overcast, full-moon, Friday-the-thirteenth night, seeking to make the Tigers its first victim of the 2019 football season. Cordova scored three unanswered touchdowns in the first half to take an early 21-14 lead, but the Tigers were able to fight off the Blue Devils to earn a hard-fought 34-27 victory.
Hubbertville welcomed the Meek Tigers to Wiley Hollingsworth Stadium on Friday night with hopes of bouncing back from last week’s loss. The Tigers won the coin toss, electing to receive the opening kick with Trinton Ory advancing the ball to the 27-yard line. Matt Sanders made the stop on the return for the Lions. The Tigers’ offense elected to attack with the passing game on its opening possession, but the Lions’ defense held its ground and forced a punt.
After years of discussions, debates, quarrels, and arguments, the long-awaited and badly-needed new Fayette County Jail is now a reality. The Fayette County Commission and Fayette County Sheriff’s Department held an open house and allowed citizens to tour the new jail on Sept. 8. According to Sheriff Byron Yerby, approximately 150 people toured the jail during the two-hour event. “The comments from the citizens were very positive,” Yerby said. “They thought the new jail was very secure and would serve the needs of the county for many, many years.”
The 50th edition of the annual Fayette Arts Festival will be held this Saturday, Sept. 14, at Guthrie Smith Park. One of the local artists/craftsmen exhibiting at the arts festival this year will be Angela Tingle of Fayette. Tingle said that she has always had an interest in arts and crafts, even as a young child. She said that she first began her serious interest in art a few years ago by making “Fairy houses.” These seemed to be popular with her friends and family, so she said that she decided to take the next step and begin making “flower dolls.”
The Northside Rams used a strong passing attack to control the ball and gain its first-ever victory against the Fayette Tigers by the score of 48-21. College-prospect Jake Corkren of Northside completed 27-of-41 passing attempts for 385 yards and three touchdowns. He was intercepted once during the game. Corkren also ran six times for 48 yards and a touchdown against Fayette.
The Glen Allen town council elected to form an exploratory committee to consider possible options with regards to hiring a water operator for oversight of the town’s water department.
During the council meeting held on Tuesday, Sept. 3, Mayor Allen J. Dunavant announced that water operator, John Wakefield had relayed his desire to step-down from the position as town water operator. Wakefield had informed Town Clerk Shirley Stewart of his decision, stating that he would like to focus more time on his personal business.
The Berry Wildcats began Region 6 play by hosting the Hubbertville Lions in the 78th meeting between the cross-county rivals. Both teams were able to put together long drives during the game, but a couple of big plays by the Wildcats’ offense would make the difference, as Berry took the win 28-6. Hubbertville won the toss and elected to receive the opening kickoff. The Lions returned the kickoff to the Hubbertville 45-yard line to begin play. The Lions put together a four-play drive featuring runs by Triston Alexander, Gage Key, and Robert Anthony.
Blue Berry Hill, 19, of Cullman, was arrested for the Friday, Aug. 30 murder of Joshua Devin Bush, 18, of Fayette. According to Fayette County Sheriff Byron Yerby, a call was received from a Fayette County resident at approximately 2:03 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 30, concerning a body lying in the road at the intersection of Bly Road and Sand Springs Road in northern Fayette County.
Scott Davis, pastor of Fayette First Baptist Church, addressed the Fayette City Council at its Aug. 27 meeting concerning a proposed ordinance to sell alcohol on Sundays. “I felt kind of blindsided and disappointed when I saw in The Times-Record that Sunday alcohol sales are being considered by the council,” Davis said. “I opposed the sale of alcohol in the city, and I want to go on record opposing Sunday alcohol sales. I’m against alcohol sales of any kind and I will always speak out in opposition.”
The importance of the upcoming 2020 Census was stressed during the Aug. 26 meting of the Fayette County Commission. Commissioner John Underwood was absent, with the remaining commissioners being present. Also present was Fayette County Probate Judge Mike Freeman, who serves as the chairman of the commission. Commissioner Shane Hughes said that the 2019 annual convention of the Association of County Commissions of Alabama pointed out the importance of everyone in the county being counted during next year’s census.
Fayette County High School has re-established its cross-country track team this fall, after an absence of almost 40 years. The team will be coached by Ann Smith, the wife of new FCHS football coach Bill Smith. She is a teacher at FCHS, and has previously coached the cross-country team at Munford High School.
On a sandy field that resembled a backyard “sandlot” more than a high school football field, the Fayette Tigers defeated the Winfield Pirates 21-7 to secure Fayette Coach Bill Smith’s first win at his new school. Despite the poor condition of the Pirates’ field, Fayette’s Jason Robinson had a career day running the ball for the Tigers, rushing 23 times for 144 yards and two touchdowns.
The Berry Wildcats welcomed the Class 2A Cold Springs Eagles to Fred Webster Stadium for its 2019 home opener. Big plays on offense and defense helped the Wildcats control the game. Berry took an early lead and never looked back as they cruised to a 43–15 victory. Berry won the toss and elected to receive the opening kickoff. Will Knight returned the kick to the Wildcats’ 35-yard line. Berry ran three plays before punting on fourth and six. Cold Springs returned the punt to the Eagles’ 43-yard line to begin its first offensive possession.
Hubbertville welcomed the Waterloo Cougars to Wiley Hollingsworth Stadium on Friday night to open its regular season play. The Lions won the coin toss and elected to receive the opening kick. Gage Key fielded the kick at the 18-yard line, advancing the ball to the 40-yard line. Utilizing the running game with Gage Alexander, Blake Anthony and G. Key, the Lions quickly moved the ball across midfield to the Cougars 21-yard line, before the opening possession stalled.
Beginning Aug. 29, the State of Alabama will no longer issue marriage licenses.
A law passed this year by the Alabama legislature abolishes the practice of issuing marriage licenses in Alabama, and replaces the licenses with a “marriage certificate.” The certificate requires the parties wishing to be married to fill out a form, stating that they agree to marry and meet the legal requirements for marriage.
The Fayette County Board of Education accepted several resignations and made additional personnel changes during its Aug. 20 meeting. The following resignations were accepted by the board: Tana Humbers, math teacher at Hubbertville School; Alanna Parker, teacher at Fayette Elementary; Sara Beth Rhudy, teacher at Fayette Elementary; Amber Sanchez, teacher at Fayette Elementary; Kerrie L.
The Fayette County High School Tigers got the 2019 football season underway in the county, hosting the Gordo Greenwave last Thursday night at John Morgan Brown Stadium in Fayette. Berry opened its 2019 season last Friday night with a road game at Sulligent, while the Hubbertville Lions hosted Phil Campbell on Friday night in a non-regular season jamboree game.
A production team from the television show, “Simply Southern” recently filmed a segment on the Fayette-based hot sauce company, “Alabama Sunshine.” The production company traveled to Fayette and used both a traditional camera/tripod and a modern aerial drone to show how the fresh, locally-grown peppers are harvested for production.
The Fayette County Lady Tigers’ volleyball team traveled to Central High School on Saturday, Aug. 24 to compete in the “Falcon Frenzy” volleyball tournament. This was the season opener for Fayette, but the Lady Tigers began its 2019 season in fine fashion, winning 12 consecutive sets against six different opponents to finish the tournament undefeated and claim the championship trophy. Shown at left, from left, front: Mary Grace Wyatt, Samantha Cox, Karli Rushing, Kayley Strickland and Grace Sullivan.
The Gordo Greenwave football team marched into John Morgan Brown Stadium last Friday night, looking to avenge losses to Fayette each of the past two seasons. This time, there would be no last minute heroics for the Tigers as Gordo easily defeated Fayette 34-6. Gordo, ranked number three in the state in the pre-season Class 3A football poll, is a traditional football powerhouse and has won 48 of its last 51 regular season ball games. The Greenwave was determined to defeat Fayette this season, since two of those three regular season losses were to the Tigers.