Aug. 22, 2017
Tifton, Georgia

Georgia's largest peanut crop in more than 20 years could produce great results come harvest season, says W. Scott Monfort, University of Georgia Cooperative Extension peanut agronomist in Tifton.

"You never know what might happen from now until harvest season, but at this point in time I'd say we probably have the best crop we've had in several years," Monfort said. "Now, we don't know what's in the ground, but just looking at the plants and what I've pulled up so far, the pod load looks wonderful."

Monfort attributes Georgia's strong crop to timely rainfall in South Georgia throughout the summer. Since about half of Georgia's peanuts are produced on dry land, or land without access to irrigation, growers rely on rain to produce a good crop.

"Where we are today is impressive considering that our growers had a rough start getting this crop up and going. We got a lot of rain early, then we got very dry and then we got spotty. Once we got this crop going and started getting some of these rains, the plants have been improving daily," Monfort said. "We just need for these rains and this sunshine to continue, not just overcast skies."
Peanuts being researched on UGA Tifton's Lang Farm.
Along with timely rainfall, Georgia's peanut crop needs lower temperatures, which are predicted.

"Usually in August, temperatures are running anywhere between 95 degrees and 100 degrees. Nighttime temperatures are up. We're also a little bit drier, so the plant is struggling to produce peanuts," Monfort said. "Having a little breather in temperature will allow the plants to be more efficient."

Georgia farmers started planting peanuts in late March and finished in early July. There are 828,000 certified peanut acres planted in Georgia this year, the state's highest amount since the early '90s, Monfort said. Georgia produced 714,168 acres of peanuts last year.  "Hopefully, the industry understands what's coming ahead and they're getting rid of the peanuts from last year," he said.

An abundant crop means farmers could flood the state's buying points with excess peanuts. However, Georgia's long planting season should help alleviate those concerns.

"Usually we can get all of the peanuts planted in a four- to five-week window. This results in (having) all of those peanuts harvested and brought to the buying points at one time. At least, this year, we're spread out over a couple of months. That will help," Monfort said.

Georgia is the No. 1 producer of peanuts in the United States, and Georgia peanut farmers provide more than 45 percent of the U.S. peanut crop each year. Georgia peanuts produce a farm gate value of well over $600 million. .


Return to the 1970s for one night only as t he Tifton-Tift County Public Library Foundation  brings  to Tifton "Face2Face: The Billy Joel-Elton John Tribute."

The fundraiser for the Library Foundation will be on Thursday, Sept. 21, at the UGA Tifton Campus Conference Center. As in past years, there will be an optional dinner before the concert.

Individual dinner/show tickets are $80; show-only tickets are $50. Tickets are available at the public library and online at -- 229-386-3416.
Taking turns at an onstage piano, the dual imperson ators of the Billy  Joel-Elton John Face2Face Tribute show conjure the  piano men in both sound and image. Backed by his band The Str angerMike Santoro, a Levittown,  N.Y., native flashes his fingers up and down the keys before he  jumps up to grab the mic to belt out such high-ener gy Billy Joel classics as "Only the Good Die Young" and " Uptown Girl."

For the second half of  the show, Ronnie Smith dons the  iconic sunglasses  and bedazzled suits of a younger Elton John as he charts his  style from the 19 70s to  the present. Bittersweet anthems such as " Rocket Man" mix with more whimsical material such as " Crocodile Rock" and " Bennie and the Jets."

Guests will get the chance to dance the night away to the string of hits by both artists.

Some Sponsorships are still available to reserve tables but only a few tables remain.  For information, call Foundation President Frank Sayles Jr. at 478-227-7126 .

Church Pianist

Tifton First United 
Methodist Church

107 W 12th St., Tifton, GA

Tifton First United Methodist Church has an opening for a church pianist. This is a part time position.

The pianist is responsible for preparing for and practicing with the chancel choir, orchestra and ensemble every Wednesday evening for about two hours and for playing at Sunday traditional  services at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m., as well at special services at Christmas, Easter, etc.  

Interested persons should contact Debbie Minton, church executive  secretary, at 229-382-6100.


Jersey Mike's Subs
1609 Highway 82 W., Tifton
Aug. 21

A one-hour documentary, "Elephants in the Coffee," produced by Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College  Associate Professor of Journalism Thomas Grant and his students,  premieres 6 p.m.  Aug. 30 in Howard Auditorium on the ABAC campus. The event is free and open to the public.

The documentary  shows how the expansion of coffee plantations in Southern India led to conflicts between humans and elephants. With hundreds of people and dozens of elephants dying each year, the film explores the question of whether farmers can co-exist with the endangered animal.

Grant became aware of the issue on a CLIC Abroad trip to India. Created by his friend, D.K. Bhaskar, CLIC Abroad is a non-profit group dedicated to using photography to connect students from America and India.
Dr. Thomas Grant, center, works with conservationist Snake Sathish, left, and CLIC Abroad creator D.K. Bhaskar, right, during the making of the documentary "Elephants in the Coffee."

"During a CLIC Aboard trip in 2012, we took some students back to India, and we saw forest department elephant camps at the Nagarhole National Park," said Grant. "At the time, there were 11 captive elephants there tended by mahouts (elephant keepers) from the Jenu Kuruba tribe. When I returned in 2014 with more ABAC students, there were 35 elephants in the camp. The question arose, why are there so many more captive elephants?"

Grant got his answer as he watched the mahouts and government workers force two newly captured wild elephants into giant wooden cages. These elephants were accused of killing people in a nearby agricultural area.

"We learned that the expansion of farming, particularly coffee plantations, led to more and more conflicts between endangered elephants and humans," said Grant. "More than 100 people are killed by elephants each year in India. Because the pachyderms are protected by law they cannot be killed, so the government's solution has been to capture and force them into submission by tribal mahouts hired by the Indian government. This is what inspired the documentary."

Grant and his team of students spoke to farmers of coffee estates, including Tata Plantation, the largest coffee farming operation in India that has a joint agreement with Starbucks Ten ABAC students were involved in the project.

" The rough cut of the documentary was completed in summer of 2016, and thanks to a faculty enrichment grant from the ABAC Foundation in the fall of 2016, I was able to complete the final cut during the spring of 2017," said Grant. 

Since its initial viewing, "Elephants in the Coffee" has won Best Documentary at the Doc Sunback Film Festival in Kansas. On Aug. 29, the film will be shown at Georgia Southwestern State University. The documentary will also be shown in Washington, D.C., in September, and at the Wildlife Conservation Film Festival in New York City in October. It has also been selected by film festivals in Russia, India, Lithuania, Estonia, Italy, Canada, and the United States.

Grant  believes that elephants and farmers can co-exist, and hopes that some farmers, like those at the Tata estates, try to make that happen. 

" Conflicts between wildlife and agriculture seldom have quick and easy solutions," said Grant. "Our coffee comes from a complex ecosystem, and resolving these issues will require concerted effort from inside India and from abroad. We believe Starbucks, which is committed to environmentally sound practices, could take a leading role is trying to develop elephant-safe coffee."  

Grant is working with Dr. Jason Scott in the Forestry and Wildlife Department at ABAC to find better ways to track elephants and reduce conflicts. And with CLIC Abroad, Grant is working toward creating an elephant education center near the national park in India that could help work toward co-existence.


Mike Davis, left, incoming president of the Tift County Foundation for Educational Excellence, recognizes outgoing president Joe West at the Foundation's board meeting today, Tuesday, Aug. 22.

Davis presented West with a Foundation paperweight as a token of appreciation for his year serving as board president.

Founded in 1989 as a private, non-profit foundation to foster excellence in the Tift County Public Schools, the Tift County Foundation for Educational Excellence now has more than 1,800 individual and corporate patrons.


A Tifton student at the  University of Georgia is one of the  recipients of the S. Marvin Griffin Memorial Foundation Scholarship this year.

Early childhood education major Anna Lee Atwater of Tifton is receiving the scholarship  given annually through the
Professional Association of Georgia Educators (PAGE) Foundation to outstanding students who aspire to become teachers
Also receiving a Griffin Memorial Foundation Scholarship is Sydney Grace Oden at Shorter University, who is from Acworth.

The scholarships are awarded to outstanding students based on their academic achievement and their demonstrated good citizenship. The awards are made available through the PAGE Foundation from donations to the S. Marvin Griffin Memorial Foundation, which is endowed by friends of late Georgia Gov. S. Marvin Griffin, who was governor from 1955-1959. A former educator at Randolph-Macon Academy in Virginia, Gov. Griffin was also owner and editor of The Post-Searchlight newspaper in Bainbridge.

Each year PAGE awards more than $15,000 in scholarships to aspiring and experienced Georgia educators. "Supporting individuals dedicated to better prepare themselves to teach our students through the generous gifts of PAGE Foundation donors is rewarding for all of us who are dedicated to improving Georgia's educator workforce," said Dr. Allene Magill, PAGE executive director.


1676 South Carpenter Road, Tifton
Aug. 22



166 Dogwood Lane, Tifton, GA
MLS # 126878

PRICED TO SELL:  3 BR, 2 BA home, 1,641 square feet, with Cathedral Ceilings, Master Suite with Jacuzzi Tub, private back yard with deck.
Dwana Coleman
                                             Visit Us Online:
                          Call us TODAY!   229-386-4222

                                Blue Skies & 
Sunshine Through
                           Each & Every
Real Estate  Transaction!

Editor & Publisher

A Service of 
Sayles Unlimited Marketing 
Tifton, Ga.


Tifton Grapevine is brought to you free of charge.  Please support our  advertisers who make this possible.