JAN. 12, 2018
Tifton, Georgia


Monday is Martin Luther King Jr.  Day, and several annual activities are planned in Tift County to commemorate the day and honor the late civil rights leader.

The annual Celebration Breakfast is scheduled at 8 a.m. Monday at the Tift County Recreation Department gym on Victory Drive.

Following the breakfast, the MLK Commemorative Service will be at 10:30 a.m. at historic Springfield Baptist Church at 507 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive in Tifton. The community is invited.

After the service, the Tifton community is invited to join in the annual march and parade. Line-up begins at 1:30 p.m. at the corner of 17th Street and S. Central Ave. The march ends at the Tift County Courthouse.

Also this year, for the first time, the Martin Luther King Basketball Classic is set for 2 p.m. at Tift County High School. Teams scheduled to play include Tift, Turner County High, Hawkinsville High, and Mitchell County High schools.


Dr. Mark J. Kistler is the new dean of the School of Agriculture and Natural Resources at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College. ABAC Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Jerry Baker said that Kistler will begin his duties March 1.

"ABAC and the School of Agriculture and Natural Resources are both in a tremendous growth phase right now, "Kistler said. "I am excited to be a part of that growth so that I can help in the shaping and molding of the college and the school for the future."

Kistler has been a faculty member in the Department of Agricultural and Human Sciences at North Carolina State University since 2006. He was also a faculty member at the University of Florida from 2004-06 and at Texas Tech University, 2002-04.

At N.C. State, Kistler is an associate professor who serves as the undergraduate coordinator for the bachelor's degree in extension education and as the graduate programs director in the college's Department of Agricultural and Human Sciences.

Before his academic career, Kistler was an extension agent and a county extension director with the University of Florida Cooperative Extension Service. He also has state-level extension experience in Texas, Florida and North Carolina.

"ABAC is just so student focused," Kistler said. "I think that kind of reputation is what attracted me to the position. Having grown up in Florida, I have been aware of ABAC for a long time."

A native of Winter Haven, Fla., Kistler received his bachelor's degree and master's degree in animal science from the University of Florida and his Ph.D. in agricultural education from Texas A&M University. He and his wife, Danielle, plan to move to Tifton in coming days.

"Coming to a smaller school like ABAC will get me back to why I got into higher education in the first place. It's so refreshing to see a place where the focus is on undergraduate education and helping students develop their careers," he said.

**Low Ticket Alert**

McAlpin Entertainment is proud to bring Grammy Award-winning superstar Lee Ann Womack's All The Trouble Tour, featuring special guest Charlie Worsham, to the historic Tift Theatre in Downtown Tifton  on March 28
Don't miss Lee Ann Womack with her full band as she performs all of her classic hits, including "I Hope You Dance," "Ashes By Now," "The Fool," "I'll Think of a Reason Later," "A Little Past Little Rock," and "I May Hate Myself in the Morning"! 
Tickets are available   Here!  This show is rapidly approaching a sell-out, so get your tickets now if you'd like to go! 


An international group of agricultural scientists have mapped the genetic code of the peanut, according to the non-profit Peanut Foundation, which  directs and supports peanut research on behalf of the peanut industry.

The culmination of a five-year research project will give scientists around the world a map with which to unlock some of the genetic potential of the peanut plant. The data will be openly available to all scientists. 

This discovery by the Peanut Genome Consortium, a group of scientists from the U.S.,  ChinaJapanBrazilArgentinaAustraliaIndiaIsrael, and several countries in  Africa, gives scientists the capability to find beneficial genes in cultivated and wild peanuts that can lead to greater yields, lower production costs, lower losses to disease, improved processing traits, improved nutrition, improved safety, better flavor and virtually anything that is genetically determined by the peanut plant.

"Study of peanut genome structure and order makes a great detective story, where many clues are found and linked together to unlock mysteries of genetics and gene regulation. This is exciting work," said  University of Georgia  Professor and Eminent Scholar Scott Jackson, chair of the Peanut Genome Consortium. 

The U.S. team included scientists from the  University of Georgia, University of California-Davis, Texas A&M University, N.C. State University, Auburn University,  University of Florida  and the USDA-ARS in  Tifton and  Griffin , and in  Stillwater, Ok.; Ames, Iowa; and Stoneville, Miss.

In 2012, the United States peanut industry urged the Peanut Foundation to initiate research to map the genetic code of the peanut plant. The International Peanut Genome Initiative was, and remains, the largest research project ever funded by the industry, with the  $6 million  cost shared equally among growers, shellers and manufacturers

"Mapping the genetic code of the peanut proved to be an especially difficult task, but the final product is one of the best ever generated," said  Steve Brown , executive director of the Peanut Foundation. "We now have a map that will help breeders incorporate desirable traits that benefit growers, processors, and most importantly, the consumers that enjoy delicious and nutritious peanut products all over the world."


The Tift County Sheriff's Office has been awarded a 2018 Car Seat Mini-Grant by the Georgia Department of Public Health, Injury Prevention Program. Through the Mini-Grant, the Sheriff's Office and the Tift County Health Department will work together to provide car seats and education to financially eligible families in Tift County.

This program, funded by the Governor's Office of Highway Safety, help ensure Georgia's children are safe while riding in motor vehicles.  Since 2007, the education, car seats and booster seats provided through the program prevented serious injury or death and saved 344 of Georgia's children who were involved in crashes. 

"It's our responsibility to keep our children safe," said Tift County Sheriff Gene Scarbrough. "The
Car Seat Mini-Grant is a great opportunity to  help our community and help protect our children from serious injuries or death in motor vehicle crashes."

In Tift County, the Sheriff's Office and the health department will educate parents and caregivers on how to properly install and use car seats, will offer car-seat inspections and provide car seats and booster seats to financially eligible families. 

Each recipient must meet certain economic guidelines. They then sign up at the health department for a monthly class that members of the Sheriff's Office teach, pay a $10 fee and attend the two-hour training class. The class is held the last Tuesday of each month at the health department from 5 to 7 p.m.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), car seats reduce fatal injuries by 71 percent among infants and by 54 percent among children ages one to four years old in passenger cars. Car seats offer the best protection for children in the event of a crash, and they are most effective when installed and used correctly. Nearly three out of four car seats are not used properly, placing children at unnecessary risk, the NHTSA says.

For information about the Tift County car seat program, call the Sheriff's Office at 229-388-6021 or the Tift County Health Department at 229-386-8373. If you would like information regarding other counties in the program, contact the Ga. Department of Public Health's Child Occupant Safety Project at or by calling  404-463-1487.

We're Seeking a
Church Pianist

Tifton First United 
Methodist Church

107 W 12th St., Tifton, GA

Tifton First United Methodist Church has an opening for a part-time church pianist.
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 as at 
special services at Christmas, Easter, etc.  

Interested persons should contact Angie Carr at 
or call   229-382-6100 .


Darian Peavy of the Tiftarea YMCA presents a $3,910 check to Mayor Julie Smith for the Save Our Pets organization's work toward a Tifton dog park. Smith raised the money in the YMCA's recent Polar Bear Plunge.

"Thank you to all those who donated to help us get this much closer to our goal of a top-notch, class A park for Tifton. It's an honor to work with this great group of people who love our four-legged friends and give their time and efforts to making a difference," Smith said.


South Georgia Banking Co. (SGBC) is accepting applications for the 2018 Julian & Jan Hester Memorial Scholarship

Sponsored by the Community Bankers Association (CBA), the program awards $1,000 to four high school seniors who plan to attend a Georgia college, university or technical school next fall.

SGBC selects the local winner, who will be awarded a $500 cash scholarship before moving on to the CBA selection process.
The goal of the Julian & Jan Hester Memorial Scholarship is to assist deserving high school seniors in their first year of college and to promote community banking. The scholarship is named after a long-time CBA chief executive officer, the late Julian Hester and his late daughter Jan Hester. Jan was a senior at the University of Georgia when she died in an auto accident in April 1990

In addition to supporting community banking, the scholarship is an opportunity to pass on the positive qualities both Julian and Jan Hester exemplified to further the development of tomorrow's generations.
Applications are available here and may be returned to the applicant's nearest South Georgia Banking Co. branch or may be mailed it to SGBC, P.O. Box 1505, Tifton GA 31793 before April 6.


After a rainy spell, mud is no friend to South Georgians who try to traverse the slick, back roads of rural areas. For Walter Hobbs, mud represents a different kind of companion as he spins, molds and shapes wet clay into pottery.

Visitors to the Georgia Museum of Agriculture in Tifton will have a chance to see Hobbs' creations at the opening of the exhibit, "For the Love of Mud: The Works of Walter Hobbs" at 10 a.m. Jan. 27 in the Museum Gallery.
Hobbs at work on his pottery.

"Known around the Valdosta art scene as an advocate for increasing the accessibility to the artistic process, Walter is no stranger to studying, exploring, teaching and evolving the art for transforming clay into functional and exhibit pieces of pottery," said Polly Huff, museum assistant director and curator.  

Hobbs' teaching career spread over three decades and thousands of students. He was a ceramic studio artist in Valdosta in the 1970s and was later an artist-in-residence at the Turner Center for the Arts in Valdosta and the Glynn Art Association. He has also been a ceramics instructor at Troy State University, Valdosta State University and in the Lowndes County school system. 

"Walter learned from eight ceramics teachers throughout the development years of his craft, one from as far away as Japan," Huff said. "His work actually shows influences from all eight of them."  

Huff said the opening of the exhibit will include a coffee and pastries reception, a pottery-making demonstration from Hobbs and a brief gallery talk. The opening coincides with another event taking place in the same building, the Wiregrass Farmers Market Annual Plant and Seed Swap.


The Tift County Sheriff's Office arrested a total of 115 people, some on multiple charges, during December, says  Sheriff Gene Scarbrough.

The sheriff released the following activity report for the last month of 2017:

Tift deputies conducted 1,476 business and property checks, 389 mobile home park and subdivision checks and answered 2,806 calls for service. D eputies served 134 warrants, 57 civil papers and 173 subpoenas.
Scarbrough said 38 charges for crimes against property were filed; There were a total of 30 parole/probation violation charges, 28 drug charges, nine for failure to appear, five obstruction charges, four child support violations, three weapons violations and six other non-traffic charges. 

Traffic stops led to the arrest of four people on a total of nine drug charges, three wanted person charges, four charges for driving under the influence and 14 for driving with suspended or revoked licenses.
The sheriff said his office completed 461 reports, 40 accident reports, issued 788 traffic citations, 134 traffic warnings, verified the addresses of 66 registered sex offenders residing in Tift County and patrolled 57,270 miles. D eputies also handled 56 transports, totaling 7,001 miles and 161 hours.


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        . a Glance

  • Abandoned Rural America: The Small Family Farm in Transition  exhibit
    a.m.-3 p.m., Ga. Museum of Agriculture, Tifton
  • Abandoned Rural America: The Small Family Farm in Transition exhibit,        9 a.m.-4 p.m., Ga. Museum of Agriculture, Tifton

In Memoriam

JAN. 4
Jerry Eugene Ivey, 60, Tifton
Edna Mae "Edna Mama" Whitfield Abel, 95, Enigma
Betty P. Evans, 89, Tifton
Ruby Jewel Stahl, 83,  Quitman

JAN. 5
Verlin Mitchell Scott, 73, Tifton
Dolphus "Sam" Skaggs, 82, Enigma
Myra Bell Owens, 77, Tifton
Elton F. Brewer, 94, Fitzgerald

JAN. 6
James Lee Butler, 90, Tifton
Johnny Dewayne Hull, 71, Enigma
Fred Boland Jr., 73, Ashburn
Ronald John Meier, 56, Nashville
Mary Barber, 73, Lands Crossing community, Irwin County
Vera Guy Hobby, 92, Ashburn

JAN. 7
Sandra Diane Altman Richardson, 58, Tifton
Larry Alex Troupe, 66, Enigma
Virginia Mastrario, 92, Ashburn
Willaford Jernigan, 91, Alapaha

JAN. 8
Charley "Horace" Fowler, 90, Ty Ty
Ennis Ray Barnes, 78, Brookfield
Newman Jones, 94, Lenox
Robin "Bob" Gorman, 82, Quitman

JAN. 9
Pamela June Lanier, 69, Brookfield
William David Barnhill, 73, Tifton
Edward H. Smith Jr., 80, Doerun
Eloise Dean Harper, 78, Alapaha
William H. "Bill" Nunn, 84, Fitzgerald
Aaron Nelson, Ashburn

JAN. 10
Eulalie Massee Woeltjen, Fitzgerald
Jeanette Howell Woods, 74, Savannah
Robert "Bobby" Asa Rice, 90, Brunswick

JAN. 11
Barbara L. Bojorquez, 86, Omega
Thomas McCalvin, 78, Cordele
Betty Ashley, 80, Adel
Etta A. Taylor, 81, Fitzgerald
Sohan Singh, 81, Lenox
3004 Park Ave. 
N.,  Tifton, GA 
* 4 BR * 3 baths 
* 3,151 sq. ft.
* MLS # 128074

Beautiful home with custom-built kitchen: Marble counter tops, double built-in ovens, gas stove, abundant cabinets. Formal dining area and cherry hardwood floors. Soaring cathedral ceilings . Large master bedroom with walk-in closet, shower, garden tub and travertine flooring. Private backyard, shaded back patio.


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