Tuesday, December 30, 2008

New Relay for Life meeting dates set

Crittenden County Relay For Life of Crittenden County is gearing up for the last four months of fundraising before the event and the support of the entire community is needed, says Stephanie Elder, community representative for the American Cancer Society's Paducah office.

The local Relay for Life has set a new meeting date for team captain and committee meetings. The new date will be the second Monday of the month. The first meeting of the New Year will be 5:30 p.m., Jan. 12, 2009. The team captains meeting will be at 6 pm. Anyone wanting to form a team or join the committee for this year’s event is encouraged to attend. Fundraising tips, team captain responsibilities, and other helpful ideas will be given. 

“This is going to be a difficult year with the sluggish economy, but cancer doesn’t stop for the economy and there are more and more people needing assistance from the American Cancer Society including some right here in Marion. I am confident that the strong community of Crittenden County will pull together to reach this year’s goal and assist the American Cancer Society in getting one step closer to finding a cure,” said Elder.
 
This year’s Relay for Life of Crittenden County is scheduled for May 8, 2009, from 5 p.m. to 5 a.m., at Marion-Crittenden County Park. 

Anyone in the Crittenden County area can form a Relay for Life team. A team is made up of eight to 15 company, organization or church members, or family and friends. If you would like more information on how to start a team, contact Sue Padget at 704-1558 or Frank Blackburn at 704-1419. Sponsorship packets are also available. Any company or organization wishing to be a 2009 event sponsor should contact Blackburn.

For more information about Relay for Life, contact the American Cancer Society at 1-800-ACS-23425 or visit www.cancer.org.

Livingston gets emergency road aid

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet is providing assistance to Livingston County for the emergency replacement of a bridge on Duley Road. Secretary Joe Prather authorized emergency road funds totaling $37,000 for the project this week.

"By awarding emergency funds to Livingston County we are fulfilling the cabinet's mandate to improve transportation for citizens across the commonwealth," Prather said. "This emergency funding reflects our commitment to all rural Kentuckians who depend on county roads for daily transportation."

Livingston County Judge-Executive Chris Lasher says the bridge over Bayou Creek has had recurring erosion problems during heavy rain.

"Every time we have a major rainfall, the water causes more damage at the site. As a result, the banks around the bridge have eroded to a point where they are now threatening the bridge and approaches," Lasher said. "The erosion has also filled in the creek causing additional problems. We're planning to build wing walls and do some other work to help protect the bridge. By stopping the erosion problem now we'll be able to keep this bridge in service and keep the roadway open for years to come."

Lasher noted that there are more than a dozen homes along Duley Road and connecting side roads that depend on the bridge for an important transportation link. Duley Road runs from KY. 763/Maxfield Road to near KY. 135 in the Hampton Community of Livingston County. The bridge, constructed in the 1980s, carries Duley Road across Bayou Creek about 0.25 miles west of Ky. 763. Lasher said without the erosion control effort the bridge would likely have to be closed fairly soon.

A check for $37,000 to cover construction costs of the bridge repairs will be issued to the Livingston County Fiscal Court. Lasher said he expects the court to open bids on the repairs Jan. 13, 2009, with work to start as soon as weather allows.

Two trooper cadets from Sturgis

Two Union County residents will be among 55 trooper cadets from throughout the commonwealth scheduled to begin 23 weeks of training at Jan. 4 at the Kentucky State Police Academy in Frankfort. Cadet Class 87 will begin with a variety of physical fitness testing followed by orientation, introduction of academy staff, issuing of uniforms, instruction materials and equipment and assignment of dorm rooms.

Geographically, the cadets represent 40 communities throughout Kentucky. Four are from London. Three are from Bowling Green, Campbellsville and Hazard. Lewisburg, Lexington, Louisville, Shelbyville and Sturgis are each represented by two cadets.

The following Kentucky communities are each represented by one cadet: Cadiz, Clarkson, Crayner, East Bernstadt, Elizabethtown, Falls of Rough, Florence, Frankfort, Hardinsburg, Hardyville, Hyden, Jackson, Leitchfield, Manchester, Mayfield, McKee, Milton, Mt. Sterling, Murray, Nicholasville, Phyllis, Pikeville, Printer, Raywick, Richmond, Rockholds, Salyersville, Topmost, Versailles, Vicco and Williamstown.

New Year holiday closings

New Year’s Day is a federal, state, city and county holidays, with all government offices closed in observance of the holiday. More specific closings for the holiday are:
  • The Ben E. Clement Mineral Museum will remain closed through Sunday for the Christmas and New Year holidays. It will reopen Monday. 
  • The Senior Citizens Center in Marion will remain closed through to Sunday for the holidays. It will reopen Monday.
  • The Crittenden Press will be closed Thursday for the New Year holiday. The Early Bird advertising deadlines will be moved up to 5 p.m., Wednesday. Please note, there will be no Crittenden Press published this week.
  • Crittenden County Public Library will be closed Thursday in observance of the New Year holiday.
  • The following courthouse offices will be closing at noon Wednesday and will remain closed the rest of the week, reopening Monday: Crittenden County Judge-Executive, Crittenden County Sheriff, Crittenden County Clerk, Crittenden Circuit Clerk and Crittenden County PVA
  • Marion City Hall will be closed Thursday and Friday in observance of the New Year holiday.
  • Crittenden County’s U.K. Extension Service will remain closed through Sunday. The office will reopen Monday.

Marion City Council sworn in

Marion's new two-year council was sworn in this week. Pictured above being sworn in Tuesday by County Attorney Rebecca Johnson are (from left) Janet Crider-Pierce, Mike Byford, Dwight Sherer and Darrin Tabor.

Marion's new city council was sworn in this week, with separate ceremonies perhaps signaling an ongoing divide over construction of a new firehouse.

On Monday, councilmen Don Arflack and Jim Brown, each re-elected to another two-year term, were sworn in by City Clerk Pam Enoch. Then, on Tuesday, the remaining four members – incumbents Janet Pierce, Dwight Sherer and Darrin Tabor and newcomer Mike Byford – were sworn in by County Attorney Rebecca Johnson. 

Brown and Arflack, in November, voted against moving ahead with a study to build a new fire station on the vacant corner of North Main and West Bellville streets, and have subsequently continued to voice their opposition to the plan. Both claim the site is dangerous because of heavy traffic at the intersection and that building on an alternate property at the corner of East Bellville and North College would be safer and more cost-effective.

State law requires all newly-elected officials be sworn in before Jan. 1, 2009. Arflack said that as of Monday neither he nor Brown had heard anything of plans for installation of the new council, so the two opted to schedule their own ceremony for that day. On Tuesday, The Crittenden Press was contacted by City Administrator Mark Bryant about the ceremony installing the other four council members for 2009 and 2010.

Arflack, explaining his reasoning for going ahead with installing, said he wanted to ensure he and Brown accommodated the law's timeline. Meantime, Bryant said there were no plans to exclude any council member from Tuesday's official ceremony and indicated he was unaware of early installation of the two until it had already occurred. Pierce, Byford, Sherer and Tabor were all contacted after Arflack and Brown's installation for Tuesday's ceremony.

No Crittenden Press this week

There will be no issue of The Crittenden Press printed this week. Instead all pertinent news and obituaries will be posted here, on our breaking news Web site and blog.

The next edition of The Press on Jan. 8 will feature our top 10 stories from 2008, as well as the news and updates from the past two weeks. 

Marion woman arrested in Paducah

A Marion woman's bad day got worse when authorities at McCracken County Jail found drugs on her person as she was being booked into jail Tuesday on traffic-related charges. 

Michelle Smith, 33, was charged with possession of drugs and paraphernalia after deputies located marijuana and drug materials hidden in her bra. In addition to the traffic and drug charges, she was also charged with promoting contraband. 

The full story can be found on WKYX 94.3 FM's Web site.

Area deaths

Leon Hodges, 78, of Marion died Monday, Dec. 29 at Lourdes Hospital in Paducah. Gilbert Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.


Fire destroys home on Ky. 120

Fire destroyed the Warren Sheer home on Ky. 120 near Shady Grove early Tuesday morning.

Firefighters were dispatched the blaze at about 3 a.m. Members of the Shady Grove Fire Department and the Crittenden County Fire Department were summoned to the fire.

Sheer and his wife got out of the home safely, according to reports from the fire department.

The cause of the blaze has not been determined. The doublewide mobile home sets near the intersection of Ky. 139 and at the corner of Gum Creek Road.



Backboard Club meeting is Jan. 6

The CCHS backboard Club will meet Tuesday, Jan. 6 at 5 p.m, at Rocket Arena before the home game. All parents are encouraged to attend this planning meeting.

Flood warning issued for West Kentucky

The National Weather Service has issued a flood warning for counties in far western Kentucky that border the Ohio River, the Associated Press has reported.

The warning affects Ballard, Carlisle, Fulton and Hickman counties. Spotters in Crittenden County also say the Ohio River is on the rise on this county's border.

The weather service in Paducah says a combination of heavy rainfall last week combined with melting snow is causing a rise on the lower Ohio River.

The weather service says the river is forecast to rise above flood stage of 40 feet by early Thursday morning and continue to rise to near 41.5 feet by Saturday morning at Paducah.

Monday, December 29, 2008

One injured in downtown accident


One person was injured and taken to the hospital following an accident in downtown Marion Monday just before 1 p.m.

A white SUV apparently was crossing West Bellville Street from Court Street behind the courthouse when it was hit broadside by a Cadillac driven by Marvin Singleton of Salem. Singleton was traveling westbound on Bellville Street.

A female passenger in the SUV was injured. Two other women were also in the car. The driver of the white Pontiac SUV was Sharon Caudill of Henderson. Her passengers were Pam Caudill and Susan Clayton. Clayton was the passenger injured, but her injuries did not appear to be severe.




Watch Night Services

Maranatha General Baptist Church on Cedar Grove Road near Salem will be having its Watch Night Service at 8 p.m., Wednesday, Dec. 31. The Hamptons will be featured.


Saturday, December 27, 2008

Mother Nature strikes again in 2008

Mother Nature got in one last lick before the close of a year plagued by damaging weather events in Crittenden County. Saturday's flooding and high winds following some unseasonably warm weather kept emergency workers busy with a number of weather-related problems.

A line of severe thunderstorms swept across western Kentucky and Crittenden County after nightfall, dropping torrential rains following wind gusts reported as high as 60 mph. In Marion, three residents were taken to Crittenden Hospital after their car became submerged in floodwaters.

Jimmy Rose, Kimberly Shantz and Steven Spurlin were taken to the hospital after the car in which they were riding ended up in a ditch off Bridwell Loop in Marion. Rose, the driver of the car, lived nearby, said Marion Police Chief Ray O'Neal.

"It looked like they just hit the water and didn't see where the road was," the police chief said.

All three were taken to the hospital, but none appeared to be seriously injured, O'Neal said.

Floodwaters were running off a hill and across the road into a ditch. The passenger side of the car was partially submerged in the water before it was pulled out by a wrecker.

Elsewhere, downed power lines and trees were reported across the county. Ky 135 was blocked for a time by a downed tree, according to emergency radio dispatches. Dispatcher Robbie Tabor said she was too busy to recount all the calls she had received during the storm.

Crittenden Volunteer firefighters also responded to a trailer fire during the storm. The home, which belongs to Bernie Bradford and is located off U.S. 60 West in Levias, was not destroyed and was still livable, said Billy Arflack, one of the firefighters who responded. No one was injured or home at the time of the fire.

Smoke damage appeared to be the extent of Saturday's fire's results, he said. Arflack said firefighters had recently been called to a fire at the same residence.

Crittenden County Sheriff's Deputy Don Perry reported the fire while on patrol.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Authorities investigating wedding crasher heist

Livingston County authorities are looking for a woman and possible accomplices who are believed to have pulled off a heist during a wedding at Salem Baptist Church on Saturday afternoon, Dec. 20.

Livingston Sheriff's Deputy Bobby Davidson is investigating the case and has theorized that a man with three children may have been in on the theft. The man sat down in the church during the wedding with the youngsters, then left abruptly with all of them before the service ended after his cell phone rang.

What the wedding party or guests didn't know was that a relative of the couple being married had confronted a woman in the basement of the church during the service whom she did not know either. The woman fled on foot.

Deputy Davidson says he thinks the man and children were lookouts while the ceremony was taking place. No one interviewed at the service and at the reception following the wedding knew the man or the three children.

"They said his cell phone rang and he didn't even answer it. He just got up right then and left," the deputy said.

Taken from a room in the basement where the bride and other members of the wedding party had dressed was about $2,500 worth of items. A camera with pictures taken prior to the wedding, at the bridal shower and family events was stolen along with two other cameras, three cell phones, two Ipods, a Nintendo DS and an unknown amount of cash. 

Authorities have a description of the suspects. The woman was approximately 30 years old, white with light brown hair. The man was approximately 30 years old, 5-foot-6, thin, white and had short dark hair. The children included a boy approximately 8-10 years old with brown hair and an eyebrow piercing. One girl was approximately three years old and the other female was about four or five years old. Both girls had blonde hair. 

Anyone with information about the alleged theft is asked to contact the Livingston County Sheriff's Department at 1-800-599-2122.

Area deaths

John Cox, 85, of Fredonia died at 3:15 a.m., Thursday, Dec. 25 at Hilltop Nursing Home in Kuttawa. He was a retired farmer, member of Central Baptist Church in Marion and U.S. Army veteran of World War II. Morgan Funeal Home in Princeton is in charge of arrangements.

J.E. Cannon, 68, of Marion died Thursday, Dec. 25, 2008 at his residence. Myers Funeral Home in Marion is in charge of arrangements.


Thursday, December 25, 2008

Four injured in wreck on Ky. 70

Update 2: Four teenagers were injured in a single-vehicle accident just before 10 p.m., Christmas night.

The white Ford Escort they were in hit a concrete bridge guard rail on Ky. 70 in the spar mine flat between Mexico and Frances.

Two males and two females were in the vehicle. Three had to be extricated from the car.

Injured were the driver Robert Cudnik, 16; Cody Gipson, 16; Alexandria Jimenez, 15; and Abby Mills, 13. Three were flown to Vanderbilt Medical Center and a fourth was taken to St. Mary's Hospital in Evansville.

Crittenden County Rescue Squad, EMS and other rescue personnel were on the scene for nearly two hours and the road was closed to traffic. 


Merry Christmas to Everyone


To all of our online readers, The Crittenden Press Family says Merry Christmas and the may the peace and love of Jesus Christ be with you this holiday season !


Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas edition will be on streets today

The Crittenden Press printed edition will be on the streets by noon today. It will be dated December 25 and will be the final newspaper of the year. There will be no printed edition of The Press next week. 

The Press Online will continue to post as newsworthy events occur.

The Christmas edition of The Press will include news about some burglars caught near Fredonia who had allegedly stole items from James Penn Construction and others.

The Press also takes a look at the lice issue at Crittenden Elementary School, some statewide wildlife stewardship awards for Russell and Michele Edwards of Tradewater Outfitters and conservationist Larry Starr, and The Press visited with Brad Hart as he prepares to end his football career at the University of Kentucky in next week's Liberty Bowl.




Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Know the Rules: Basketball Game Ball


The Crittenden Press Online will be posting some basketball rules questions this season so readers can test their knowledge of the game. Questions and rules interpretations are being provided by local collegiate and high school basketball official Del Brantley.

NCAA play: Visiting team notices that the ball they are warming up with is different from the game ball to be used during the game. The coach requests that his/her team be allowed to warm-up using the type of ball to be used in the game. What's the ruling?

Answer: The official shall inform the home team's game management that the visiting team be allowed to warm-up with the same type of ball that will be used during the game.

Accidents abound on early morning mix

UPDATE
Four accidents have kept Crittenden County authorities busy this morning. Two wrecks occurred on U.S. 60 East – one near Rosebud curve and another near the rock quarry. A third accident happened on Ky. 120 east of Marion. 

Another woman crashed in Crayne and her van turned on its side (pictured). Heather Lowery, 35, of Princeton was driving the mini van, but was uninjured. She was heading toward Marion when she lost control of her vehicle on roads glazed with ice.

Motorists in the other accidents were not seriously injured either.

State highway officials and local law enforcement agencies are encouraging people to stay off roadways unless it is necessary to travel. Roads and highways are very slick, especially secondary highways and county roads.

The wintry mix is expected to continue falling through the morning.



Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas scene from Fredonia CP Church


Fredonia Cumberland Presbyterian live nativity scene.

Basketball game moved to Lyon County

Because of a water leak affecting Rocket Arena, tonight's high school girls basketball game has been moved to Lyon County. Tip-off will be at 6 p.m., for the junior varsity game, with the varsity game to follow.

Water leak alters school happenings

Because of a series of water leaks today at the campus of the middle and high schools, two school-related events for tonight have been moved or rescheduled.

First, tonight's board of education meeting will take place at the elementary school instead of the central office. The meeting will still be at 6 p.m.

Also, tonight's basketball game at Rocket Arena has been postponed. No date, time or location had been set at the time of this posting. Further details will be posted as available.

Dr. Rachel Yarbrough, superintendent of schools, said two water leaks today at the Gum Street campus have affected the central office and other facilities. The likely cause is the sub-freezing temperatures over last 24 hours or so, which causes the ground to expand as it hardens, rupturing in-ground pipes.

Students are out of school on Christmas vacation until Jan. 5.

Snow, sleet possible Tuesday morning

Traffic ADVISORY

A wintry mix is possible across parts of the region Tuesday Morning.

Kentucky Transportation Cabinet highway crews will likely be unable to pretreat area roadways with salt brine due to the temperature being under 25 degrees.

Crews are planning on salting or pretreating bridges on Interstate 24, parkways, and other four lanes depending on the temperature early Tuesday. If the temperature is under 25 degrees crews will spread salt. If the temp is 25 degrees or over crews will pretreat with salt brine.

With a possibility of freezing rain and sleet in the early morning hours Tuesday, motorists are advised to use appropriate caution by slowing down and allowing extra travel time.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Obituary

Gene Walker King, age 68, of Marion, Kentucky died December 19, 2008 at Western Baptist Hospital in Paducah. Myers Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Former Marion residents found dead in motel

Update: The funerals for the mother and daughter will be in Marion at Myers Funeral Home Monday and Tuesday.

Evansville police said Friday that the case of two deaths, 41-year-old Carol C. Thomas of Henderson, Ky., and her daughter Brandi R. Thomas, 3, at a U.S. 41 motel appear to be a murder-suicide.

Thomas and her daughter are former Marion residents.

Both Thomases suffered single gunshots to the head, according to a report on the Evansville Courier's Web site. The Courier reported that the door to their room at Motel 6 on U.S. 41 north had been chained shut from the inside when a maintenance worker forced his way inside shortly after the noon check-out time.

Authorities estimated the time of death of both the mother and daughter to be 11 p.m. Thursday. Carol C. Thomas had the handgun in her hand when the bodies were discovered, the Courier reported.




Cave In Rock Ferry is back open

The Cave In Rock Ferry, closed earlier today due to high winds, is back open.


Southern Living readers honor Grand Rivers

Southern Living Magazine has honored three Kentucky sites in its annual Readers’ Choice Awards.

The reader survey, which picked the 10 top venues in each of 15 categories, ranked the community of Grand Rivers No. 8 in the Best Small Town category. And the vista of Kentucky Lake from the Grand Rivers Jetty won the No. 4 spot in the list of Best Scenic Views in the South. The survey also ranked Lynn’s Paradise Cafe in Louisville No. 10 in the Best Breakfast or Brunch Restaurant list.

The magazine conducts the annual reader survey to highlight the most appealing venues in the southern U.S. from Texas to Delaware. Among the other categories included in the coveted survey are Best Festival or Fair, Best Hotel and Best Neighborhood for Shopping.

To view the entire survey results, visit Southern Living Magazine online.

Obituaries

Orlin Long, 94, of Salem died Thursday, December 18, 2008 at Livingston Hospital & Healthcare Services. Myers Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Donald L. Nelson, 78, of Marion died Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2008 at Crittenden County Hospital. Gilbert Funereal Home is in charge of arrangements.

Ferry temporarily closed for high winds today

The Cave In Rock Ferry has been forced to close due to high winds today. The wind has caused rough water conditions on the Ohio River forcing the ferry to cease operations temporarily.

The ferry connects KY 91 with Illinois Route 1 across the Ohio River between Crittenden County and Hardin County, Ill.

The ferry normally operates from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. central time, 7 days a week. The ferry carries about 500 vehicles across the Ohio River in an average day.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Driver's license classes cancelled

Graduated driver’s license classes scheduled for this afternoon in Crittenden County have been cancelled, according to a release from the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet.


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Obituary

Larry E. Westendorff, 61, of Marion died Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at Crittenden Hospital. Myers Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

This obituary arrived too late for this week's printed edition of The Crittenden Press

No school in Crittenden County Thursday, Dec. 18


Due to ice still on many rural county roads, there will be no school in Crittenden County on Thursday, Dec. 18, 2008.


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Peabody Energy choses Muhlenberg for new plant


Peabody Energy has chosen a site in western Kentucky near Central City in Muhlenberg County for a proposed multibillion-dollar coal-to-gas plant, according to the Associated Press.

Peabody of St. Louis and ConocoPhillips, a Houston-based company, announced Tuesday that they have chosen a site in Kentucky and have started the permit process. The companies are in a joint venture, with ConocoPhillips providing the coal gasification technology.



Almost 300 attend documentary showings at Fohs


The documentary released last weekend about Crittenden County's history was a big hit with audiences who viewed the nearly hour-long video at Fohs Hall.

The "world premier" was held Friday night with about 150 attending. No one from Crittenden County had laid eyes on the video until it was shown Friday.

More than 200 DVDs would sold the first day they were available. Some were pre-sold. A second showing was held Sunday with about 125 attending.

The $20 DVDs are available at Quilting Tomorrow's Heirlooms in Marion. They will be available at other locations in the future. To have one mailed, cost is $25 which includes shipping and handling.

When you see the video, you will find a striking sequence about the Amish community. The information for the script came firsthand from an Amish woman but an actress' voice was used to narrate that segment. The Amish can't be photographed or portrayed in such movies due to their religious beliefs.

Read more behind-the-scenes tidbits about the movie in this week's printed edition of The Crittenden Press.

School is cancelled for Wednesday


There will be no school in Crittenden County Wednesday, Dec. 17.

The high school basketball games scheduled for Tuesday night are postponed. No make-up date has been announced.

The Crittenden County School Board meeting scheduled for Tuesday night is postponed until Monday at 6 p.m., at the central office.




Weather postpones Chamber's luncheon

The Crittenden County Chamber of Commerce quarterly luncheon scheduled for today has been postponed due to weather conditions and icy roads. 

The event will be delayed for one week, rescheduled for Tuesday, Dec. 23 at the same time and place - noon at the Marion Ed-Tech Center.




Monday, December 15, 2008

Obituaries

Ethel Hunt, 87, of Princeton died at 1:42 p.m., Sunday Dec. 14, 2008 at Princeton Health and Rehab. Morgan Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

William R. Manus, 105, of Burna died Monday, Dec. 15, 2008 at Livingston Hospital. He was a World War I veteran and was of the Baptist faith. Boyd Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

James Edward Champion, Sr., 86, of Marion died Monday, Dec. 15, 2008 at his home in Marion. Gilbert Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

No school in Crittenden County Tuesday, Dec. 16


There will be no school in Crittenden County on Tuesday, Dec. 16 due to icy roads and inclement weather. Stay tuned to the breaking news blog for updates on closings and cancellations.

Schools letting out early due to weather

School officials are hedging their bets against Old Man Winter, letting classes out an hour early today.

Schools will dismiss at 2 p.m., today, with regular bus routes scheduled. The move is one of precaution as a winter storm is anticipated to hit the area as temperatures continue to drop this afternoon. A fair amount of wintry precipitation is expected to fall today and into tonight.

No decision on whether schools will be in session tomorrow will be made until tonight at the earliest. Officials will continue to monitor the weather and forecast for the area. Continue visiting The Press Online for the latest on closings and weather updates.


Weather still expected to get bad tonight

Although western Kentucky missed any serious weather Monday morning, state and local officials continue preparing as the first major winter storm of the season approaches the area, click here for radar view.

State and local emergency management agencies continue to monitor an approaching weather system capable of bringing dangerous winter conditions to western Kentucky. The Paducah National Weather Service expects a mix of rain, freezing rain, sleet and snow to reach the area by late Monday.

As the mix of wintry conditions is expected to continue throughout the day and evening Tuesday, Kentucky officials encourage everyone to remain alert and continue to monitor their local broadcasting stations and weather alert radios. If you do not have to travel, stay in. If you must travel use caution and drive slow, maintaining plenty of stopping distance.

Road conditions throughout the state can be found on the Kentucky Department of Transportation's website at www.511.ky.gov, or by calling 511 in Kentucky or 1-866-737-3767 for out-of-state callers.

Weather, roads expected to deteriorate

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet is gearing up for a round of winter weather across western Kentucky starting today. Highway crew supervisors will be monitoring weather and road conditions as a winter storm approaches.

Due to the expected 1/2 inch of rain expected before temperatures drop and change the precipitation to freezing rain, crews will be unable to pre-treat highways and bridges. The precipitation is expected to transition to a wintry mix of freezing rain, sleet and snow across the region starting around mid-morning Monday with one-quarter inch to 1 inch of ice accumulation by Tuesday morning.

 You may also go to www.weather.gov/pah and click on Severe Weather Briefings for more detail.

Motorists are urged to monitor local news media for updated weather forecasts and be prepared for deteriorating weather conditions starting this morning and running into Tuesday.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Three from Crittenden on Sun's All-Star Team

Coach Al Starnes and Rockets Rodney Robertson and Gaige Courtney have been named to The Paducah Sun's All-Area Football Team. Well over half of the all-stars in the Sun lineup were selected from teams on Crittenden County's schedule this season.

Here is a list of the Crittenden players on the all-star team and what the Paducah newspaper had to say about each one. For a full list see the Paducah Sun's Sunday, Dec. 14, 2008 edition.

Coach of the Year: Al Starnes - Led Rockets to state semifinals.

OFFENSE
RB: Rodney Robertson, Crittenden County — Power-speed runner played much of the season recovering from a broken hand.

DEFENSE
LB: Gaige Courtney, Crittenden County — Big, physical player set single-season and career tackling records, led Rockets to state semifinals.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Marion soldier part of gun confiscation operation in Iraq

Lt. Cameron Mays of Marion is one of several U.S. Army soldiers working on an operation in Iraq to rid the streets of toy guns. The mission, the Army says, will prevent possible civilian casualties by avoiding fake guns around battlefields and in neighborhoods in Iraq.

Read the Associated Press story about the mission and Lt. Mays, a Crittenden County High School graduate, by clicking here.



Friday, December 12, 2008

Electrician killed at Hopkins County coal mine

An electrician working at a mine site in western Kentucky was killed Thursday, a state official announced today.

The victim was Timothy Ross Albright, 31, of Madisonville. The accident occurred at about 3:30 p.m.

Albright was a contract electrician working at a coal preparation plant under construction at the Cardinal mine operated by Warrior Coal Co. in the Manitou community in Hopkins County. 

According to initial reports, Albright was working in a bucket lift installing wiring when the bucket became stuck, then sprang upward. The victim struck his head on a beam overhead. He was transported to Madisonville Regional Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Officials with the Kentucky Office of Mine Safety and Licensing (OMSL) responded to scene Thursday and returned Friday to investigate the accident, said Johnny Greene, OMSL executive director.

It is the eighth fatality at a Kentucky coal mine in 2008. Yesterday’s incident and two others are currently under investigation.

Louisville sights and sounds abound

Kentucky's largest city has much to offer the visitor, from the Louisville Slugger Museum to the Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts and much everything else in between.

This week, as I joined 10 professionals tied to Crittenden County's school district at an international summit on education, three of my out-of-conference experiences stand out. These observations cover the world of fine art, human interaction and some travelers' delights.

First, down the street from the site of the forum, Louisville's famous Galt House, stands another hotel. The C21 Museum Hotel offers a fine dining experience, overnight stay and art museum all in one. A must see on any trip to Louisville, say visitors to and residents of Louisville, the hotel is certainly unique.

As you enter the dining and service area off Fourth Street, a bronzed faun (half-man, half-goat mythological creature) greets the customer with an apple held in his hand that is to be rubbed for good luck. A bit creepy, the effigy is far from the most imaginative creation in the building. 

Walking through the bar service area, faces of famous Louisvillians can be seen on neatly-arranged tiles to the left. At the back, above a couch for social visits, framed images show a bare-chested woman in numerous poses for the watchful eye. The black and white photography leads the observer into the display area of the museum, which also doubles as the front desk for the hotel.

The current exhibits in the museum are artistic statements defining war. From bars topped with razor wire to a large American flag made entirely of painted, plastic toy soldiers, the images are striking. Each submission makes its own statement on war. One video shows a Columbian soldier washing camouflage painting from his face with what is left of a limb blown off in that nation's war against drugs. Arguing against the war in Iraq, a mosque is replicated from nothing but parts from weapons, whether gun barrels or ammunition. The smell of the display, the unmistakable odor of gun metal, gives pause for thought before making your way to a showcase of comical miniatures designed by a Louisville artist. Each replicates a man in modern history that has in some way been made infamous through acts of war or violence.

Though The Galt House itself is a wonder to behold as the state's top choice for conference gatherings. The rooms are a delight. Walk-in showers, flat screen, high-def TVs and delightful employees who politely hold onto the camera you forgot in the meeting until heading out of the parking garage; all made the two-night stay enjoyable. But what made the stay exquisite were the bath towels. From Homestead, Fla., to Ukiah, Calif., stiff hotel bath towels have left my overnight experiences uncomfortable. Coarse enough to sand paint from a car, most towels leave air-drying as a better method for redress. But not at The Galt House.

Lastly, the shoe-shine man in the lobby was the highlight. A 57-year-old who is headed back to school at Kentucky State in Frankfort to finish a degree he started years ago to avoid the Vietnam War draft, he charms the customer as he spit-shines a shoe. A bit rough in appearance, his warm heart and insight to child-rearing perhaps would have made him a perfect choice for a featured speaker for the educational leaders gathered for a summit at the hotel.

"It's like shining shoes," Henry said of raising his own children. "You've got to have lots of patience and give them lots of love."


--Daryl K. Tabor

Globalization changing teaching methods

Globilization. That concept has been the focus of this week's international summit for educators from across the state. And the Kentucky Leadership Academy-sponsored forum has given those school leaders insight to tools for better preparing youth for a shrinking world.

Even as those education administrators like Crittenden County Superintendent Dr. Yarbrough contemplate how to cope with the education cuts announced by Gov. Steve Beshear Thursday, speakers at the Louisville summit have shared modest solutions from around the world that are preparing student for international competition. From Swaziland to Newport News, cutting-edge tactics in educating are utilizing already-available technology to shrink the world and teaching methods that rate success outside of test scores.

"Today's learning is not dependent on location," Mike Butler, an executive at Nottingham, England's Djanogly City Academy, told nearly 400 Kentucky educators Thursday afternoon through a virtual Webcast from his institution.

Yarbrough and other education professionals from Crittenden County in attendance at the international summit, entitled Learning the Core Business in a Global Society, are taking such revelations to heart. In a roundtable discussion between addresses, the 10 local participants began contemplating ways to prepare Crittenden County students for the globalization that is knocking down economic and cultural borders.

"Our students have got to be prepared for a future that doesn't exist right now," the first-year superintendent said.

In  a theme that has been echoed by several international speakers at the summit, the world once thought to be flat is closer to that shape than ever before. No longer is the other side of the world on the other side; it's in America's backyard. And the ends of the earth a now at our fingertips.

The international educators chosen to spoke to Kentucky's educational leaders in Louisville have implemented instructional methods that embrace that concept. Through links to virtual classrooms in nations across the globe, many of these teachers in foreign nations have opened new cultures to their students. Their methods of teaching are no longer based in their own culture.

"We got to get kids out of the county without sending them out of the county," said Pam Collins, an incoming Crittenden County school board member in attendance at the summit this week.

Collins was speaking of virtual classroom links from elementary to secondary levels. Already, links to classrooms from Indonesia to Great Britain are being considered as way to shrink the world for the students enrolled in Crittenden County's three schools.

Big issues for next week's meetings

The Marion City Council and Crittenden County Fiscal Court will each meet in regular session next week – the council Monday night and magistrates on Tuesday morning.

Although the location of the proposed new fire station has been a major topic of discussion around town, the matter will not be on the council's agenda. That doesn't mean there will not be some debate on the matter. Reportedly, there will be some citizens there to make known their opposition to the site selected by the council – the corner of Main and Bellville streets.

The fiscal court, facing projections of a budget shortfall this year and even greater strains looming in 09-10, will initiate some discussion of cost-cutting measures. With the state's budget shortfall nearing $500 million, local officials are not expecting any help from the commonwealth. Therefore, some real belt-tightening will be necessary on the local level.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Three injured in Marion accident

Three local people were hurt in a two-vehicle accident just east of Marion on U.S. 60 Wednesday night about 5:30 p.m.

According to Kentucky State Police reports, Sandie D. Waddell, 36, of Marion was operating a 2009 Toyota eastbound when she attempted to make a left turn into a driveway. Waddell's vehcile was struck in the rear by a 1969 Chevrolet pickup driven by John M. Hurley, 67, of Carrsville. 

Both Hurley and his passenger, Shelby R. Gergingin of Sturgis, were transported to the Crittenden Hospital by Crittenden County EMS for treatment. Waddell was taken to Crittenden Hospital by personal vehicle for treatment of her injuries.

The road was closed to traffic for some time while investigators cleared the scene.

Crittenden educators take in tea and crumpets

From Louisville, Ky.

Betty Bigland believes schools should be hubs of learning for an entire community.

The education professional from Great Britain told fellow educators gathered Wednesday at the Kentucky Leadership Academy-sponsored education summit in Louisville that a culture of learning is critical to a child's development. In her native England, Bigland said children often involve their parents in the education process, even teaching their elders some of the ins and outs of new technology in a cyber café after school.

At Bigland's primary school, Lent Rise Combined School in Berks, England, they do things a bit differently than in most Kentucky schools. Every class, 16 of them, is paired with another country to experience their education process via the Internet and video conferencing. This passion for collaboration helps her students get a jump on life as globalization reduces borders to little more than lines on a map.

"No one is prepared to be or to accept second best," she told an array of educators in the ballroom of The Galt House in downtown Louisville, emphasizing that education must evolve with climate of social and economic changes in the world in order to prep students to be competitive.

That statement stuck in the mind of Chris Cook, chairman of Crittenden County's Board of Education.

Cook and several other members of the local school district, including Superintendent Dr. Rachel Yarbrough, are in attendance this week at the international educational summit. They are learning how administrators, elected board members and the community can affect change to better prepare Crittenden County youth to cope with the world at hand. They join about 400 other educators from across the state.

One thing Bigland employees at her school that is not common across the Bluegrass State is foreign language requirements. Every student in her British school is required to take a foreign language. Currently in Crittenden County, foreign languages are offered only as electives in high school. Spanish is the only available option.

Cook, Yarbrough and the others are preparing to gather at their tables in the Galt House ballroom for Day 2 of the summit. On today's agenda are a keynote address by Dr. Yong Zhao of China, a session on effective learning by Lucy Fisher of Australia and Teaching for Understanding by a Harvard professor. Other presentations by a South African educator and another session with a virtual presentation from England will end the day. Throughout the sessions, educators are encouraged to collaborate and share ideas from the presentation.

Attending the summit from Crittenden County are Cook; Yarbrough; high school teacher Kim Vince; high school principal Todd Merrick and his wife Regina, director of Crittenden County Public Library and a former teacher; incoming board member Pam Collins and her husband Stuart; community educator Holly White; instructional supervisor Tonya Driver; and Nancy Hunt, Crittenden County Extension qgent.

Continue to visit this site as updates from this conference continue.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Press joins district at education summit

The Crittenden Press will be in Louisville this week to join administrators and board members from the Crittenden County's school district at an international education summit.

The board of education extended an invitation to Managing Editor Daryl Tabor to join staff of the district at a Kentucky Leadership Academy-sponsored International Leadership Summit. 

Participants to this unique, innovative event will have the opportunity to interact virtually and in person with leading practitioners from continents and countries including Australia, South Africa, Iraq, the United Kingdom, China, India and the United States. The event will lay the foundation of the three summit strands: Effective Schooling, Effective Learning, and Effective Leadership in a global society. 

This summit builds upon Kentucky’s work in developing instructional leadership teams and improving performance of under achieving schools and frames it for sustainability around a 21st century, global network. With an eye on helping Crittenden County students compete around the globe, Board of Education Chairman Chris Cook believes this week's event will help achieve that goal.

Inviting The Press to join the summit will provide a unique insight to tomorrow's education in Crittenden County, and Tabor will be blogging thoughts and information on this Web site. Interviews and reaction from Crittenden County's educational leaders can also be found here.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Wide load knocks down signs, mailboxes

Local authorities responded late Friday afternoon to a motorist who reported signs and mailboxes being destroyed by a wide load entering Marion on U.S. 60. The driver indicated that a truck hauling a combine on U.S. 60 West was knocking down mailboxes and road signs along the right of way as it headed east.

City and county police officers responded to the report, stopping both the escort for the wide load and the driver of the semi hauling the farm implement. One Marion Police officer reported mail was strewn from boxes from Martin Tire to at least the foot of Moore Hill. Apparently, the driver of the truck did not notice that the dual wheels on the combine he was carrying was hanging far over the shoulder of the road.

Heath Martin, supervisor of Crittenden County's state road crew, was notified of the downed road signs around 4:30 p.m., Friday.

Authorities took information from the drivers of the vehicles. The company for which they work will be responsible for damages to both public and private properties. Complaints should be registered with Marion police dispatch at 965-3500.

Crittenden Press to blogcast playoff game


The Crittenden Press will provide Rocket fans unable to go to tonight's playoff game or out of earshot from WMJL's live broadcast a unique opportunity to follow the contest. We will be blogcasting, or updating the game on the Rocket Football Blog from the radio station's broadcast from Fort Mitchell. 

Simply log on to www.crittendencountyrocket.blogspot.com at kickoff, 6:30 p.m., CST, and hit your refresh button throughout night to receive updates on your computer.

LISTEN LIVE ONLINE: You may also listen to live streaming radio broadcast from Cincinnati's WCVX-Radio. Click here to connect and listen live on the Web.

Lions host Lunch with Santa

Santa will take a break from his visits on the courthouse lawn this Saturday for a lunch break at Marion Baptist Church.

Jolly St. Nick will be sharing a meal from 11 a.m., to 1 p.m., at the church’s Family Life Center with children and their parents. Crittenden County Lions Club will be serving hot dogs, drinks and desserts at no cost while the children wait to tell Santa their holiday wishes.

Father Christmas will return to the court square from 6 to 8 p.m., following Marion’s Christmas parade at 2 p.m. He will also be there on Friday at the same time to welcome youngsters. He will continue to be available on the square Dec. 12 and 13 from 6 to 8 p.m., as well as from 10 a.m., to noon on Dec. 13. He will have the same schedule on the following weekend.

Christmas parades Saturday

The annual Christmas parades in both Marion and Salem will make their way through the streets Saturday.

Marion’s parade, themed “A Country Christmas,” begins at 2 p.m., along Main Street, while Salem’s sixth annual lighted parade begins at 5:30 p.m., in the downtown area.

Suspects charged in Liberty Fuels break-in

Three suspects believed to have been involved in an August break-in at Liberty Fuels in Marion have been charged, according to Marion Police Chief Ray O'Neal.

Surveillance video at the gas station on the south end of town caught two men on tape while they broke in through the front doors at Liberty Fuels. An alarm went off and they left immediately without taking anything. Watch the store's surveillance video here or below.

Warrants were issued this week for the two Paducah men and one woman. The three are also suspects in burglaries in Possum Trot and Princeton. The Press printed edition will have details in its Dec. 11 issue.


Thursday, December 4, 2008

Kimball property on mind of C-J

The potential for public recreational opportunities from the sale of 12,000 acres of Kimball International Inc., property in Crittenden and Union counties has the editorial board of The Courier-Journal excited.

In today's issues of the state's flagship paper, an editorial lauds the Kentucky Department of Fish & Wildlife for its part in acquiring two large properties in the state: the Kimball property at the edge of the county and the 2,600-acre Otter Creek Park near Louisville.

Sen. Dorsey Ridley, D-Henderson, sums up the importance of the local project.

"In my district, people are totally ecstatic about this...," he told the paper. "It is such an opportunity for future generations of Kentuckians."

To read the entire editorial, follow this link to The Courier-Journal.

Ultralights seen in Crittenden leading cranes


Several Crittenden County residents reported seeing a couple of ultralight aircraft leading migratory birds last weekend. Some said they were geese, but they were actually whooping cranes. The activity was witnessed in Crittenden skies over the central part of the county from Sturgis to the Moore Hill area and around Frances.

The cranes and their ultralight leaders had stopped over for a rest in Union County and set back off on their 800-miles journey from a central Wisconsin wildlife refuge to St. Mark’s National Wildlife Refuge on the Gulf Coast of Florida. The birds are from a captive breeding program and being taught how to migrate. It's not an unusual concept. Over the last couple of decades, geese and other migratory birds have been force-fed a similar trip to the deep South.

Arriving in Marshall County on Saturday after a stop in Union County, the migration has been on hold pending weather with lighter winds to allow safer operation of the two ultralight aircraft, according to Paducah Sun outdoors writer Steve Vantreese an article published today.

If you have a Paducah Sun online subscription, click here to read more.

Ultralights are little more than motorized hanggliders with tricycle-like landing gear and dual seats, Vantreese wrote. They can travel at the average 32 mph at which the cranes tend to fly.

The photo above is from the migration program's Web site. Click here to go there.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Obituary

George R. Berard, 63, of Marion died early Wednesday morning December 3, 2008 at his residence. Myers Funeral Home in Marion is in charge of arrangements.

This obituary was not received in time to make the newspaper's Dec. 4 issue. A complete obituary will be published next week.


Press working from Bangkok to Beechwood

Your Crittenden Press staff is working on stories from Bangkok to Beechwood this week and all the latest information and community news will be available on newsstands today by 3 p.m.

While the Crittenden County Rocket football is packing for a long bus ride to Beechwood High School in Fort Mitchell, Ky., a small group of Marion folks are caught up in the political unrest in Thailand. 

The Rocket football boys are playing in the Class A state semifinals Friday at 6:30 p.m., (CST). The Press Online's Rocket Blog will be following the team from the time it leaves Marion Thursday until the final whistle of Friday's game. WMJL-Radio 102.7 will begin coverage at 6 p.m., for those unable to make the 300-mile trip. There will be two chartered fans buses leaving the school at 11:30 a.m., Friday. Reservations are required by Thursday morning. Call the school for a seat. Cost is $30.

Marion businessman Thom Hawthorne, internationally-known china painter Paula Collins and local conservationist Larry Starr have been stranded in Bangkok for weeks. They hope to be home by Christmas now that Tai officials have met some of demands made by protesters who shut down the airport. Their friends and family are keeping a close eye on the situation.

These and other stories are on the front page of this week's Press.



Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Gov. Beshear seeks federal help for Kentucky

Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear is meeting with President-elect Barack Obama and other governors this week at the National Governors Association meeting in Philadelphia. Gov. Beshear will have his hand out, asking the president-elect for a promises to help Kentucky in covering state expenses such as Medicaid and unemployment benefits.

"I'm certainly going to be pushing for the different kinds of stimulus packages that can help state governments weather the storm," Beshear told the Associated Press Monday.

Kentucky lawmakers approved a two-year $19 billion state spending plan earlier this year, that was already based on an estimated $900 million drop in state revenue but still face an estimated $456 million shortfall before the end of June. Some say the state's general fund will be behind by $1.3 billion in less than two years.

State universities and other public agencies are being asked to trim 4% from their budgets immediately.

Read more about the Beshear's meeting this week with Obama, whom the democrat governor publicly supported during the campaign, at the Courier-Journal's statewide Associated Press link. Although Beshear supported the president-elect, Kentucky went red for John McCain.



Monday, December 1, 2008

Obituaries

Ruby Jean Hodges, 81, of Marion died Sunday, Nov. 30, 2008 at Crittenden County Health and Rehabilitation Center. Myers Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Shelia Faye Curry, 64, of Clay, died Sunday, Nov. 30, 2008 at Livingston Hospital in Salem. Vanover Funeral Home in Clay is in charge of arrangements.

Arch Conn Jr., 87, of Sturgis died at 10:27 a.m., Friday, Nov. 28, 2008 at Methodist Hospital in Union County. Whitsel Funeral Home in Sturgis was in charge of arrangements.

School to dismiss at 11:30 a.m., Friday

UPDATE
Crittenden County schools will be dismissed at 11:30 a.m., Friday for the Rockets' state semifinal football game at Beechwood. The game will be played at 6:30 p.m., Central Time at Fort Mitchell, Ky.

A chartered fan bus will be leaving Marion at 11:30 a.m., Friday from the school. Tickets to ride are $30 each. Call Carol Perry at Crittenden High School, 965-2248, to reserve a seat on the bus.

Keep track of all the latest updates on the Rockets' bid for a state title at the Rocket Blog.

Crittenden County's scheduled district opener against Lyon County Friday has been postponed. The boys' game with Lyon is rescheduled for Dec. 30. The girls' game is rescheduled for Dec. 22.


Fire department getting in holiday spirit

The Tolu Volunteer Fire Department is getting in the spirit of Christmas by giving away toys for both a girl and a boy. Children 12 and under can register for a remote control fire truck or a doll, crib and stroller set to be given away in a Dec. 22 drawing. The name of the child, parents' name and phone number should be sent to: Tolu Fire Department, P.O. Box 44, Tolu, KY 42084. Entries are due by Dec. 20.


Christmas season appearing in Marion

The Christmas season is appearing in Marion.

The courthouse is decorated again this year as is many shops and homes downtown. David Hunt's home on South Yandell is a town favorite during the holiday season because of its vast array of decorations.

The Christmas Parade is at 2 p.m., Saturday and Santa will be on the court square Friday night and Saturday.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Rocket football hosts First Region Championship tonight


Crittenden County's football team will be playing for a berth in the state final four tonight when it hosts Mayfield in the First Region championship game.

The Rockets are 9-3 this season and ranked 7th in the Associated Press Class Football poll. 

Mayfield is 7-5 and unranked after being No. 4 in preseason. Mayfield lost at home 27-14 to Crittenden County in late September during the regular season. It was the Cardinals first loss ever to the Rockets.

Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m., at Rocket Stadium. The crowd will be large so get there early for a seat. There will be tailgating in the west end zone parking lot prior to the game.

The winner will play in the state semifinal round Dec. 5 at either Beechwood High School in Covington or at Frankfort High School.


Thursday, November 27, 2008

Hoover obituary


Marjorie Arflack Hoover
, 92 of Marion, died at 6:50 p.m.Wednesday November 26, 2008 at Crittenden Health Systems in Marion, KY. 

Myers Funeral Home in Marion is in charge of arrangements. The funeral is Saturday. See the funeral home's Web site for details.




Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thanksgiving costs lower in Marion

Last year, the cost of the average Thanksgiving meal for a typical American gathering of 10 cost under $40, but is up to $41.12 in 2008 according to the American Farm Bureau Federation.

But in Marion, the same gathering of people can be fed for considerably less by shopping for bargains at the city’s two groceries. According to advertised prices from Conrad’s Food Store and Food Giant, the cost to feed 10 would be $29.09.

The following Thanksgiving staples are listed with the price found in Marion with the American Farm Bureau Federation’s national average in parenthesis:
  • 16-pound turkey, $12.48 ($19.09);
  • Cube stuffing, 14 oz., $1.25 ($2.57);
  • 30 ounces of pumpkin pie mix, $2.50 ($2.34);
  • Two pie shells, $1.33 ($2.26);
  • Three pounds of sweet potatoes, $1.77 ($3.12);
  • A dozen rolls, $1.50 ($2.20);
  • One pound of green peas, $1.25 ($1.58);
  • One gallon of whole milk, $3.48 ($3.78);
  • Fresh cranberries, 12 oz., $2.28 ($2.46); and
  • Half pint of cream, $1.25 ($1.70).
The Associated Press contributed to this story.

Thanksgiving holiday closings

Thanksgiving is a federal, state, county and city holiday. All government agencies and offices will be closed Thanksgiving Day. All state, county and city government agencies, including courthouse offices and city hall, will remain closed Friday and Saturday in observance of the Thanksgiving holiday. Friday is not a federal holiday and mail will be delivered both Friday and Saturday.

The Senior Citizens Center in Marion will be closed Thanksgiving Day and Friday.

Crittenden County Public Library will be closed Thanksgiving Day and Friday, but will be open from 9 a.m., to 1 p.m., Saturday.

The Crittenden Press will be closed Thanksgiving Day and Friday. Subscribers to the newspaper should expect delivery one day late and advertisers in The Early Bird will have until 5 p.m., today to place their ad. The Early Bird will be delivered as usual on Tuesday.

Ben E. Clement Mineral Museum will be closed Thanksgiving Day.

Marion Convenience Center will be closed Thanksgiving Day and Friday, but will be open from 8 a.m., to noon Saturday to accept solid waste.

Coal severance funds will continue into 2012

Crittenden County officials got some good news this past week. They learned that coal severance tax receipts will continue flowing into the county's budget over the next four-plus years.

Because the coal mine in the northern part of the county has been idle for some time, concern was that state coal severance funds would dry up. You can read more about what this will mean for Crittenden County in this week's printed edition of The Crittenden Press, due out on newsstands today at 3 p.m.

Additionally, The Press is following a story about the proposed new health department. Contractors' bids came in and county officials were pleased. The bid went to a Paducah company. Construction will begin soon. Read more about this in the Nov. 27 issue of The Crittenden Press or visit us online Wednesday afternoon at The-Press.com.


Governor asks for 4 percent off the top

Gov. Steve Beshear is asking state universities and government agencies to find ways to trim 4 percent from their budgets in order to meet the state shortfall head on.

The governor is calling for immediate action. He wants proposals in the next few days.

State economists predicted last week that Kentucky will be short about $1.3 billion over the next year and a half.

Read more in this morning's online edition of the Courier-Journal. Click here.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

KSP offers dope tip hotline for drug activity

Kentucky State Police are asking for your help at combating illegal drug activity.

If you want to anonymously report any type of suspected illegal drug activity, citizens can call the KSP toll-free drug tip hotline at 1-800-DOPETIP. The 24-hour hotline is answered seven days a week.

Friday, November 21, 2008

State carries out execution

The state's first execution in almost 10 years and only the third since the U.S. Supreme Court reinstated capital punishment in 1976 was carried out tonight at Kentucky State Penitentiary in Eddyville.

Marco Chapman, 37, was put to death by lethal injection and pronounced dead at 7:34 p.m., for the 2002 murders of two children. Chapman pled guilty to the killings and was sentenced to death in 2004. He refused to exhaust all of his appeals, claiming he deserved die for the crimes. Outside efforts to delay the execution were denied and the courts found Chapman competent to deny his appeals.

“Tonight, the state carried out the mandate of the court in a professional and solemn manner," Gov. Steve Beshear said shortly after the execution. "Let there be no question: Mr. Chapman committed a horrible crime, he pled guilty and was repeatedly found competent to make decisions. The state responded by doing its duty.

"My hope is that the Marksberry family, whose lives were torn apart by Mr. Chapman’s horrifying acts, can find some level of peace and the ability to move forward. I pray for them, and I pray for Mr. Chapman and his family on this difficult day.”

Chapman pled guilty to taking the life of a 7-year-old girl and 6-year-old boy in the early morning of Aug. 23, 2002. He also stabbed a 10-year-old girl and the children's mother, but both survived. The mother was also bound and raped. The crime took place in Warsaw, Ky.

Chapman's last meal, according to the Louisville Courier-Journal was a 32 oz., medium rare steak, 20 butterfly shrimp, salad with ranch dressing, iced tea and banana cream pie.

The last execution in Kentucky was that of 50-year-old Edward Lee Harper on May 25, 1999. A year earlier, Harold McQueen became the first person in Kentucky executed since the death penalty was reinstated 21 years earlier. There have been 165 men executed at Kentucky State Penitentiary since 1911. All but two, Chapman and Harper, died in the electric chair.

As of Nov. 1, 2008, 1,130 convicted murderers have been executed in the U.S. Four hundred and nineteen have taken place in Texas. There are currently 37 on death row in Kentucky, including one woman. Of the total, only six of the inmates facing execution are minorities. To view all of Kentucky's death row inmates, visit www.corrections.ky.gov/inmateinfo/deathrow.htm.


Obituaries

Rev. Leon Cochran, 86, of Carmi, Ill., died at 10:30 a.m., Tuesday, Nov. 18, 2008 at Select Specialty Hospital in Evansville. He is the father of the late Norma Cochran of Marion.

Patricia Ann “Patty” Sunderland, 56, of Salem died Thursday, Nov. 20, 2008 at Crittenden County Convalescent Center.

Anna Carlene Hills, 85, of Marion died Thursday, Nov. 20, 2008 at Crittenden County Health and Rehab.

Pre-game tailgate party at tonight's playoffs

Rocket football fans are encouraged to join the tailgate party beyond the west end zone at Rocket Stadium. Tailgaters will have plenty of grills for anyone wishing to join the pre-game fun.

Tailgating will begin in the bus garage parking lot next to central office at around 5 p.m. Bring your hotdogs, wings, buns, drinks, etc., and join the football atmosphere. Everyone is welcome.

Kickoff for the regional semifinal game between Crittenden and Ballard Memorial is at 7:30 p.m.



Thursday, November 20, 2008

Christmas programs at LBL in December

GOLDEN POND, KY -- Looking for a fun, family holiday outing? Come explore the customs and celebrations of the holiday season with the Golden Pond Planetarium shows at Land Between The Lakes (LBL).

The Golden Pond Planetarium offers two holiday programs Thurs-Sun, Dec. 4-21. A Story of Christmas explores the customs of Christmas, the origins of the Christmas tree, and the tradition of Santa Claus, the Wise Men, and Hanukkah. You’ll see the skies as they looked in the Holy Lands at the time of Christ. ‘Tis the Season looks at the seasonal, religious, and cultural rituals from around the world, and how the stars and planets have played an important role in these celebrations throughout history.

“The skies offer celestial beauty and important lessons to be learned this time of the year,” stated Jim Taylor, director of operations for the LBL Association. “It is a wonderful experience for both families and groups.”

“Friends of LBL” has arranged for Santa to be present at the Planetarium on Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 21st. Bring your camera for some great photo opportunities with Santa.
Admission to the Golden Pond Planetarium is $4 for ages 13 and up; $2 for ages 5-12; 4 and under, free. Organized groups may schedule either show at other times and receive group rates. Please call 270-924-2020 for more information. Show times are as follows:

A Story of Christmas
·Thurs. & Fri., 1 pm
·Sat. & Sun.,  11 am & 2 pm
‘Tis the Season
·Thurs. & Fri., 10 am & 2 pm
·Sat. & Sun., 10am, 1 pm & 3 pm

The Homeplace, Nature Station, North and South Welcome Stations, and Golden Pond Planetarium and Visitor Center will be closed Thanksgiving Day, Land Between The Lakes is managed by the Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, in partnership with “Friends of LBL,” to provide public lands outdoor recreation and environmental education. We encourage visitors to review our website at www.lbl.org each season, and throughout the season, for our Calendar of Events, updates on programs and policies, and temporary trail and road closures.

Additional LBL information is also available on our website or by calling 1-800-LBL-7077 or 270-924-2000. You can find out more about “Friends of LBL” at www.friendsoflbl.org.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Expo draws big bucks & big crowd


Saturday’s Big Buck Expo at Marion Baptist Church’s Family Life Center was hailed a huge success by organizers, who say more than 250 people attended. 

Dozens of mounted deer heads were on display which drew the attention of many wishful onlookers. Hunters were asked to bring in their deer for showing. 

The event was staged to coincide with the second weekend of the firearms deer season and included a faith-based message by noted Christian outdoorsman Al Stone. 

The group that put on this year’s expo say they will have a second annual event Nov. 14, 2009.

Community Christmas in need of more funds

The local effort to help the less fortunate at Christmastime is struggling to raise enough cash and merchandise this year to make the holiday a normal one for more and more families.

Organizers of Community Christmas say that the spiraling economy is increasing the number of those in need this holiday season. More than 300 children have signed up for help. Christmas trees with information about those children can be found at Pamida and Dollar General in Marion, or contact Mona Hodges at the Pennyrile Area Community Services for details on how to help.

Read more about this issue and other local news in this week's Crittenden Press printed edition, which will be on newsstands today before 3 p.m.


Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Hunter found dead in deer stand

A Louisville man was found dead in his deer stand in Ohio County Monday. Investigators believe he was lifting his rifle up to his deer stand when it accidentally discharged, killing him.


Another man was shot near Reelfoot Lake in western Tennessee over the weekend. Authorities said John Burnett, 44, of Paris, Tenn., was shot by a high-powered rifle while walking through a wooded area. He and two other men were going to check on a duck blind.

Burnett was hit in the elbow by the bullet, which then pierced his abdomen. He was taken to a nearby hospital and later flown to a regional trauma center.

Investigators have not found the alleged shooter in that case.


Santa's knee ready for Crittenden children


Ho, ho, ho... Santa's on his way to Marion !

St. Nick will be arriving on the court square to offer his ear to children in want of Christmas goodies beginning later this month.

The small wooden building on the courthouse lawn will be Santa's headquarters on four consecutive Fridays and Saturdays starting the last weekend of November.

Here is Santa's schedule in Marion:
Dates:
Nov. 28-29
Dec. 5-6
Dec. 12-13
Dec. 19-20

Times:
FRIDAYS - 6-8 p.m.
SATURDAYS - 10 a.m. to noon and 6-8 p.m.

Only "good" children will be allowed to visit with Santa !
So, don't be naughty...


Sunday, November 16, 2008

Fiscal court meets Monday

The Crittenden County Fiscal Court will meet at a different time than normal this month.

Magistrates will convene at 9 a.m., Monday, Nov. 17 at the courthouse for their regular monthly meeting. The court generally meets the third Tuesday of the month. However, scheduling conflicts this week with other governmental affairs meetings out of the county have prompted the court meeting to be rescheduled.

Of course, fiscal court meetings are open to the public.


Saturday, November 15, 2008

Deer Expo today at Marion Baptist Church

The Deer Expo will be held from 11 a.m., until 1 p.m., today (Saturday) at Marion Baptist Church's Family Life Center.

There will be dozens of mounts, a speaker and FREE chili.

There is no admission. It's all free.


Dawson Springs Klan hit with $2.5 million verdict


A jury awarded $2.5 million in damages on Friday to a Kentucky teenager who was severely beaten by members of a Ku Klux Klan group because they mistakenly thought he was an illegal Latino immigrant.

The Klan group, which is headquartered in Dawson Springs, is considered the second largest Klan outfit in the United States.


The photo above is from the Princeton Times-Leader Online, which also has coverage on the lawsuit filed against the Klan.




Friday, November 14, 2008

Sale of Kimball property complete

An agreement has been reached on nearly 12,000 acres of Crittenden and Union County land owned by Kimball International. The furniture-maker confirmed the sale this morning. The land brought just over $2,090 per acre.

The nearly 18 square miles of farm and timberland sold for $24.539 million, nearly a week after the company rejected a high bid of $23.3 million at auction on Nov. 8. The agreement closed out Kimball's sale of 27,196 acres of Indiana and Kentucky property auctioned last week.

The property in Crittenden and Union counties was purchased by a Timber Investment Management Organizaton, or TIMO, partnered with the Commonwealth of Kentucky to make at least part of the 11,759 acres of land a Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife-operated preserve. The name of the TIMO has yet to be released; however, sources close to the sale say it's Forestland Group, LLC based at Chapel Hill, N.C.

According to John Kahle, Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary of Kimball International, the land was sold to fund the company's growth strategy, reinforcing an already-solid balance sheet. 

"Given the properties' significant value, but relative liquidity, we believed Kimball share owners would be better served by converting this investment into cash at this time," Kahle said in a news release from Woltz & Schrader Auctions, the company that handled the sale of the acreage.

See next week's edition of The Crittenden Press for full details on the sale of the Kimball property.



Thursday, November 13, 2008

Kimball property update

The Evansville Courier newspaper has a story on the Kimball property in this morning's issue.

It adds some details not previously reported regarding the timber consortium and the state's partnership. The two are working together, trying to buy Kimball's nearly 12,000 acres of timber and farm land, most of which lies in Crittenden County.

The article says Kimball and the high bidder from last weekend's auction - believed to be the state and its timber company partner - are still negotiating, but hope to have a resolution by Friday.


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Eddyville man dies in Lyon County wreck

David E. Holloman, 42, of Eddyville was killed Tuesday in a single-vehicle accident in Lyon County.

According to a Kentucky State Police report, Holloman was northbound on Ky. 373 around 6:45 p.m., when he apparently ran off the right shoulder of the road and lost control of his 1997 Ford pickup after overcorrecting. The truck struck a ditch and overturned, ejecting Holloman, who was no wearing a seatbelt.

An autopsy was requested by declined by the Lyon County coroner. The investigation is continuing by Trooper Daniel Jones.


Printable UK basketball schedule

University of Kentucky Wildcat basketball action tips off Friday at Rupp Arena. The season gets under way against VMI in Lexington, but the 'Cats will likely face their toughest opponent of the year just four days later when they travel to Chapel Hill, N.C., to face unanimous preseason No. 1 North Carolina. That Tuesday game will be televised on ESPN at 8 p.m.

UK then faces Delaware State and Longwood at Rupp Arena as part of the Findlay Toyota Las Vegas Invitational, before traveling to Sin City to face Kansas State (ESPNU) and the winner of the West Virginia-Iowa contest to finish up the tournament.

The Wildcats then return to Lexington for and eight-game homestand, the longest of the 2008-09 season. During the stay, the No. 17 Miami Hurricanes (ESPN) and arch-rival Indiana come to town. The new year then starts off with a trip to No. 3 Louisville (CBS) to face an in-state rival and former Coach Rick Pitino. 

The rest of the season is the most critical as the Wildcats enter the Southeastern Conference portion of the schedule beginning Jan. 10 against Vanderbilt. UK will face No. 14 Tennessee and No. 19 Florida twice in the Eastern Division. In fact, the season ends March 7 (CBS) in Gainesville, Fla.

Click on the image to the right to download a printable 2008-09 schedule with local times and local television and radio availability.