Local News Articles

Caney Folk Music & Arts Festival to Host Fundraiser for DeKalb Prevention Coalition

September 11, 2017
Caney FoCaney Folk Music & Arts Festival lk Music & Arts Festival to Host Fundraiser for DeKalb Prevention Coalition

On Saturday, October 7th, organizers will host the Caney Folk Music & Arts Festival and fundraiser, scheduled to take place on Cherry Hill Farm at 16639 Smithville Highway in Silver Point, Tennessee. Gates open from 11 a.m.until 8 p.m.

The family-friendly event will include a full day of live folk and bluegrass music, free music workshops, a "Kid Zone," outdoor/recreational vendors, art, food, games, and a celebrity auction of country music memorabilia, including autographed guitars from George Strait, Thomas Rhett, and newcomer, Kelsea Ballerini. 100% of donations will benefit the DeKalb Prevention Coalition's Health Adventure. The program currently provides free healthy activities that promote physical and emotional well being for the local community, along with teens and adults with disabilities.

Admission is $10 for Adults, $5 for Seniors/Military and Kids 12 and under are free. $7 (Adult) tickets are available through September 30th here https://www.caneyfest.com/tickets/

Free Medicare Help is Available

September 11, 2017

Medicare Open Enrollment for 2018 begins October 15. For those who are eligible to sign up for Medicare or have questions about making changes to their Medicare health plans and/or Medicare Part D prescription drug plans, free, un-biased Medicare information and counseling is available through the Upper Cumberland Area Agency on Aging and Disability.

Open enrollment for the coming year runs from October 15 to December 7. During this time, currently enrolled Medicare beneficiaries can make changes to their plans. The staff at UCAAAD, a division of Upper Cumberland Development District, and volunteers are trained to provide free, un-biased counseling and advice for those seeking assistance with making changes to their Medicare plans.

It is important for Medicare beneficiaries to compare their current plans to the 2018 coverage options, which will be released on October 1, 2017. UCAAAD staff helps those seeking assistance with plan comparisons without selling anything and can be reached at the toll free SHIP line at 1-877-801-0044.

Throughout open enrollment, UCAAAD staff and volunteers will also be offering Medicare counseling at locations throughout the Upper Cumberland. A full list of appointment times and locations can be found at www.ucdd.org or at www.facebook/ucddconnect or by calling the toll free SHIP line at 1-877-801-0044.

Annual DTC Meeting Set for Saturday, September 16

September 10, 2017
Dwayne Page
Annual DTC Meeting Set for Saturday, September 16

DeKalb Telephone Cooperative, Inc. (d/b/a DTC Communications) will host its annual meeting on Sept. 16, 2017, at the DeKalb County Fairgrounds in Alexandria.

Directors will be elected in the Milton, Norene, and Woodbury exchanges. The Nominating Committee has qualified the following candidates by nomination: Jim Vinson - Milton, Terry McPeak – Norene, and Jean Chumbley Ferrell – Woodbury. One candidate, Michael Alexander, qualified by petition in the Woodbury exchange.

Voting for directors will take place at the cooperative’s annual meeting on Saturday, Sept. 16 and during early voting Monday-Wednesday, Sept. 11-13.

Hours and locations for early voting include:
Early Voting Hours
*Mon., Sept. 11 ............... 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
* Tues., Sept. 12 .............. 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
* Wed., Sept. 13 ............. 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Early Voting Held at DTC Store Locations
* 111 High Street – ALEXANDRIA
* 200 Walmart Drive – SMITHVILLE
* 106 West High Street - WOODBURY

On Saturday, Sept. 16, gates to the DeKalb County Fairgrounds in Alexandria will open at 11:45 a.m., with voting from noon until 3 p.m. The business meeting will begin at 3 p.m. or once the last person in line at that time has voted.

Only DTC members may vote, and each member must present proper photo identification. For a single membership, only that individual may vote. Either member of a joint membership may vote, but not both. In the case of a business membership, a business affidavit is required.

For additional information about membership and voting, call DTC at 615-529-2955.

Purple Tigers Crush DeKalb 59-21

September 9, 2017
Dwayne Page
Purple Tigers Crush DeKalb 59-21

The DeKalb County Tigers lost 59 to 21 to the Purple Tigers at Watertown Friday night. Their first meeting on the gridiron in a regular season game since 2008.

The black and gold Tigers fall to 0-4 on the season while the Purple Tigers improve to 2-2.

The first score of the game came on a 71 yard touchdown pass play from DeKalb County quarterback Tyler Cantrell to Paxton Butler. Andrew Fuson added the extra point and the black and gold Tigers led 7-0 with 9:41 left in the 1st period.

Watertown answered on a 4 yard touchdown run by Gene Wynne with 6:34 left in the 1st period. Nathaniel Gutierrez tacked on the extra point and the game was tied at 7.

The Purple Tigers took their first lead of the game with 21 seconds left in the 1st period on a 10 yard touchdown pass from Quarterback Heath Price to Elijah MaKlary. Gutierrez added the extra point and Watertown led 14-7.

Watertown extended its lead to 17-7 with 6:22 left in the 2nd period on a 35 yard field goal by Gutierrez

DeKalb County cut the gap with 1:16 left in the 2nd period on a 4 yard touchdown pass from Quarterback Tyler Cantrell to Braxton Linder. Andrew Fuson added the PAT and the Black and Gold Tigers trailed Watertown 17-14.

Watertown’s Zack Hill scored on a 20 yard touchdown run after recovering a bad snap. Gutierrez added the PAT and Watertown’s lead was 24 to 14 with 9:39 left in the 3rd period.

DeKalb County scored on a Bradley Miller 1 yard touchdown run with 7:18 left in the 3rd period. Andrew Fuson booted the extra point and the Black and Gold Tigers trailed 24 to 21.

Quarterback Heath Price scored on an 8 yard touchdown run for Watertown with 2:35 left in the 3rd period. Gutierrez tacked on the PAT to give the Purple Tigers a 31-21 advantage.

Price scored on a 15 yard touchdown run with 1:04 left in the 3rd period. The extra point by Gutierrez was good and Watertown led 38-21.

Deramus Carey rambled 60 yards for a Watertown touchdown and with the Gutierrez' extra point the Purple Tigers led 45-21 with 10:36 left in the 4th period.

Heath Price scored his third running touchdown of the game with 9:25 left on a 17 yard keeper and with the extra point by Gutierrez, Watertown held a 52-21 lead.

Deramus Carey added a 13 yard touchdown run with seven seconds left in the game. The PAT by Gutierrez was good and Watertown won 59-21.

DeKalb County will host Grundy County next Friday night, September 15 at 7 p.m. in Smithville. WJLE will have LIVE coverage. Grundy County is 1-3.

Motorists Should Expect Lane Closures with Bridge Repairs

September 8, 2017
Dwayne Page
Motorists Should Expect Lane Closures with Bridge Repairs

Work has begun on the repairs to the South College Street (Veterans Memorial) Bridge over West Broad Street (Highway 70)

During the project, there will be lane closures on U.S. 70 in each direction below the bridge to allow the contractor to safely work. One lane in each direction will be maintained. Motorists should be alert for construction personnel and equipment. Estimated project completion date is October 2017.

Mid-State Construction Co. Inc.of Livingston is the contractor for the project

Face of the Race for the Down Syndrome 5K

September 8, 2017
Bill Conger
Left to right: Zac (dad), Sadler (little brother), Saydee (little sister), Kristin (mom), Sawyer
5-year-old Sawyer Cole is the Face of the Race for the 3rd Annual 3.21 Run for Down Syndrome Awareness on Saturday, October 7 at DeKalb West School

5-year-old Sawyer Cole stood walked up to the plate at the T-Ball field more than ready to take his first swing. The little boy with Down syndrome had been diagnosed with B Lymphoblastic Leukemia at the end of March a few days after the team’s first practice and had not been able to attend any practices or games as he underwent chemo treatment at Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital.

“Finally, he felt like going and batting one time,” recalls Sawyer’s mom Kristin Cole. “There wasn’t a dry eye at the field, I don’t think.”

Sawyer will continue with chemo until next May of 2019. This is just the latest challenge the Smith County family is facing since their son was born unexpectedly with Down syndrome.

“It was a shock,” says Cole. “We were numb at first, and then obviously, it didn’t matter after that, and that’s why we didn’t do the genetic test before because it wouldn’t have mattered either way.”

Sawyer remained in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital for 18 days, having several surgeries. After that, their precious bundle of boy underwent physical therapy and occupational therapy for several years until he was recently released.

“For now, he’s where he needs to be,” says his mom. “He was receiving speech and feeding therapy once a week, and we’ve taken a break from that for a few months trying to adjust to his new diagnosis and all the appointments that go along with it.”

Despite the struggles, his mom says the family has a positive attitude.

“I look at it as you can either make it hard, or you can just try to figure it out,” Kristin said. “You have to do it either way. So, there’s no reason in making it harder and stressing about it. You kind of figure it out and go on.”

Take away the physical challenge and Sawyer is like any other little boy.

“He loves any kind of water—pools, waterslides, any kind of slides or swings like going to fairs or amusement parks,” his mom says. “He loves Mickey Mouse and loves to watch Mickey Mouse Club House. His favorite toys are balls, stacking cups, drinking cups, any kind of cups. He can keep himself amused for a long time with those.”

“He’s kind of quiet, but then, he has his little moments when it’s just us. He can get kind of rowdy, and he’s really silly, incredibly loving. He’s so sweet. He’s just a little love bug with certain people.”

Sawyer is the Face of the Race for the 3rd Annual 3.21 Run for Down Syndrome Awareness on Saturday, October 7 at DeKalb West School. You can register for the race at www.321RUN4DS.org.

The event was started in the spring of 2015 by then DWS 8th grade student Addison Oakley. Addison and her family have strong ties to Down syndrome children who are close friends and family. They wanted to raise awareness and provide resources to children with Down syndrome and special needs in rural areas that don’t usually have the resources of people in metropolitan areas. Thanks to the support of folks in DeKalb and Smith Counties, the organization has given back over $10,000 to assist individuals, communities and school systems’ special needs’ programs with games, tools, and other educational supplies to benefit children with Down syndrome and special needs.

“We want to do what we can to help spread word about this race and Down syndrome specifically, and help people realize these kids are different, but they’re extra special too,” adds Cole.

Down syndrome occurs when an individual has a full or partial extra copy of chromosome 21. Typically, the nucleus of each cell contains 23 pairs of chromosomes.

If you are interested in helping this cause, or would like to donate or become a sponsor, please contact 321Run4DS@gmail.com or at 615-548-4624.

DeKalb Prevention Coalition Partners with Local Pharmacies to Spread its Message

September 8, 2017
Dwayne Page
DeKalb Prevention Coalition Partners with Caldwell's Drug Store to Spread its Message
DeKalb Prevention Coalition Partners with Johnny's Drugs to Spread its Message
DeKalb Prevention Coalition Partners with F.Z. Webb & Sons Pharmacy to Spread its Message

Were you aware that more than 55 percent of people that misused prescription pills in 2014 got those pills from a friend or a relative (most often from a medicine cabinet), according to the Tennessee Department of Health?

The DeKalb Prevention Coalition (DPC) recently partnered with three local pharmacies to help get the message out about their initiatives. The coalition has purchased 24,000 pharmacy bags to be used by F.Z. Webb & Sons Pharmacy, Caldwell’s Drug Store, and Johnny’s Drugs that have information about the Count It, Lock It, Drop It initiative as well as binge drinking and information to help quit smoking.

DPC wants to remind the community to COUNT your pills once every two weeks. This will prevent theft and ensure that medications are taken properly. LOCK up your medications and store them in a place that others would not think to look. Contact the Coalition for Medicine Lock Box.

DROP off unused and expired medications for proper disposal at the Smithville Police Department’s box located inside Smithville City Hall. It’s quick and anonymous. DPC meets the last Tuesday of every month at Noon. Please see the facebook page for meeting locations and information about upcoming events at www.facebook.com/DeKalbPreventionCoalition.

Board of Education to Reorganize

September 8, 2017
Dwayne Page
Doug Stephens, W.J. (Dub) Evins, III, and Shaun Tubbs

The DeKalb County Board of Education will reorganize next Thursday, September 14 during its regular monthly meeting.

The board chooses its Chairman, Vice Chairman, and Assistant Secretary every September to serve for 12 months.

The presiding Chairman is W.J. (Dub) Evins, III from the fifth district. The Vice Chairman is Doug Stephens from the sixth district and Shaun Tubbs of the seventh district is the Assistant Secretary.

The board agenda for next Thursday is as follows:

*Consider and act on 1st reading on School Board Policies

*Consider and act on granting tenure

*Consider and act on surplus property

*Consider and act on Health Insurance Premiums 2018

*School updates and or committee reports

*Personnel report from the Director of Schools.

Any other business that may properly come before the Board

The consent agenda is as follows:

Approval to utilize the electronic check signing and present signatures until update

Approval of the Contract for Audit of Activity and Cafeteria Funds for the Fiscal Year ending June 30, 2018

Consider and act on 2017-18 21st Century Grant approved funding and budget

Consider and act on CTE Equipment Grant and Budget Amendment

Consider and act on approval of a Acellus Grant

Consider and act on 141 Budget Amendment (land)

Consider and act on a request from DeKalb Middle School to participate in two (2) day (noon) basketball games with Warren County

Consider and act on a request from DeKalb West School to participate in two (2) day (noon) basketball games with Dibrell Elementary

Consider and act on approval to collect data from the STEMmobile program

Consider and act on approval of State Provided Progress Monitoring Grant (Special Education)

Consider and act on Dual Enrollment Agreement between DCHS and Motlow State Community College

Consider and act on DeKalb County School Board members attending the 2017 Leadership Conference and Annual Convention, Gaylord Opryland Resort, November 2-5 2017.

The meeting will be at 7 p.m. at the Ernest Ray Education Center. A work session will be held prior to the regular meeting at 6 p.m.

Dates Set for State Senate Special Elections

September 8, 2017
Dwayne Page
Dennis Stanley

The dates have been set for the special elections to fill the vacancy in the 17th Senatorial district.

Governor Haslam issued a “writ of election” today (Friday) setting the Primary date for November 7th and the General Election for December 19th.

The vacancy was created with the resignation of Mae Beavers who announced she was devoting all of time to her campaign for governor.

“We anticipated these would be the dates of the special elections, and now that we know for sure we can officially begin the tasks that are required by law and make final preparations,” said Dennis Stanley, DeKalb County Administrator of Elections.

The qualifying deadline for candidates is Noon September 28th. Winners of the respective primaries will then square off in the general election along with any independent candidates that qualified by the deadline.

Early voting for the November 7th special primary will be held from October 18th through November 2nd. The exact hours will be set Monday night by the local election commission.

Early voting for the special General election will be November 29th through December 14th.

“We want to remind potential new voters that the last day to register to vote in the November primary is October 10th,” Stanley said. “And we want to remind election workers to mark the election dates on their calendars and be expecting a letter in the near future announcing the dates for training.”

If you are interested in becoming a poll worker, please contact the DeKalb County Election Office at 615-597-4146.

DCHS Tigers to Renew Rivalry with Watertown Tonight (LISTEN TO TIGER TALK HERE)

September 8, 2017
Dwayne Page
DCHS Tigers to Renew Rivalry with Watertown Tonight

The DeKalb County Tigers will renew an old rivalry tonight as they travel to Watertown to take on the purple tigers.

Game time is 7:00 p.m.



The Tigers are 0-3 with losses to Warren County 26 to 10, Upperman 49 to 27, and Stone Memorial 38 to 16.

Watertown is 1-2 with a season opening win over Gordonsville 20 to 0 and back to back losses to Mount Juliet Christian 42 to 21 and Trousdale County 42 to 6

Tiger Coach Steve Trapp said he is hoping for a good performance from his team in tonight’s game.”It’s not that the guys do not have the ability to play the type of football that we want. It’s just getting them in the right position and getting them mentally correct but ultimately they have to get out on the field with a strong desire and passion to be the greatest football players they can be each and every play. Our effort is good. We’ve never had to question their effort but mentally we’re still trying to get everybody on the same page and playing a good brand of football,” said Coach Trapp.

Coach Trapp also talks about what he expects from Watertown.”Defensively, they are very similar to our defense. Coverage wise it looks like its pretty similar. I expect them to step up their pressure game because we’ve got four new offensive linemen out there. They probably have seen film on every game we’ve played this year. I expect them to probably blitz a little bit more than what they have shown on tape. Offensively they really do want to spread the field with a lot of screen game and jet sweep game. I don’t know if they throw it down the field quite like we want to do. Its more horizontal stuff. They try to out leverage you and get more people to the point of attack so our defense really has to make sure we’re aligned well and running to the football fast,” added Coach Trapp.

Kick-off is at 7 p.m. and WJLE will have LIVE coverage on AM 1480/FM 101.7 and LIVE streaming at www.wjle.com with the Voice of the Tigers John Pryor and Luke Willoughby.

WJLE’s Pre-Game shows begin with “Coach to Coach” at 5:00 p.m. featuring former UT football coach Phillip Fulmer and former UT assistant coach Doug Matthews with broadcaster Larry Stone talking Tennessee and SEC football.

“Coach to Coach” is followed by “Murphy’s Matchups at 6:00 p.m., a look at Tennessee High School Football from Murphy Fair with commentary on games and coaches interviews.

“Tiger Talk” airs at 6:30 p.m. with the Voice of the Tigers John Pryor interviewing Coach Steve Trapp and Tiger players Hunter Fann, Paxton Butler, and Isaac Cross.

The game kicks off at 7:00 p.m. with play by play coverage on WJLE with John Pryor and color commentary by Luke Willoughby


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