You are on page 1of 12

APRIL 19 - MAY 2, 2013 VOL. 03 NO.


E-Watch provides residents with new protection option
Editor; ::: free


he Griffin Police Deis utilizing modern technology to offer residents a unique twist on the Neighborhood Watch program through E-Watch, which will allow officers to communicate with participants via e-mail rather than the traditional

occasional meetings. According to Capt. Dwayne Jones, this will capitalize on neighbors’ proximity to one another and technology to share information. “The advantages of EWatch are that people who live in the city can now send and receive e-mails related to their neighborcont, E-WATCH, P. 11

State of the Housing Authority presented to local officials

Two full pages on local education issues - budget concerns, how Common Core standards effects local education, and a new option for students - virtual schooling. p. 2-3


A successful night for the inaugural Dovedown Art and Music show on April 12: Nine artists showed their work; three art pieces sold that night; over 200 people showed up to view the art, listen to music and support the event; and nearly $800 was raised for a Journey Church missions trip to Jamaica. For more photos from the evening, visit The Grip's Facebook page at


Redding receives Volunteerism Award
ula Redding received The Bain Proctor Award for Volunteerism at the Spalding County Commissioner's meeting on Monday, April 15. According to the proclamation, Redding was selected because she "exemplifies not only the spirit of the Bain Proctor Award but lives it every day." "Her tireless commitment to the less fortunate in Griffin has transformed lives in the truest sense of the word. She is a faithful, noble and humble humanitarian and never seeks, nor seldom receives personal recognition for her Spalding County Parks and Rec time and effort. Her faith in an individual’s potential is Director Louis Greene, Bain Proctor gracefully given and received without reservation regard- Award recipient Eula Redding, and county commissioner Gwen Flowers-Taylor. cont, VOLUNTEER, P. 11


riffin Housing Authority (GHA) Chief Executive Officer Bob Dull recently addressed the state of the Housing Authority before numerous local officials including members of the city and county Boards of Commissioners, the Griffin-Spalding County Board of Education, City Manager Kenny Smith, County Manager William Wilson, the Griffin Police Department, the Spalding County Sheriff’s Office, Griffin Fire-Rescue, the Spalding County Fire Department and the Spalding Collaborative, among others. The comprehensive presentation was designed to provide local officials with

information pertaining to the rapidly changing progress of the GHA. According to Dull, the GHA maintains strong financial footing and is poised to experience significant changes in the coming months and years that he believes will benefit not only the residents who receive housing assistance, but the community as a whole. “If you’re 50-years-old and don’t own your own home or have a nice nest egg, you’ll probably end up on our waiting list at some point in the future,” Dull said, describing the key role he believes public housing will play in the future, particularly as the
cont, HOUSING, P. 11

Is that frozen meal really "healthy"? Find out how to tell for sure. p.5

All artists needed for the first ever "Off the Wall" plein air art competition
p. 7


Five officials respond to your question regarding progress made on plans & studies
p. 10-11

Game Changer: Mentoring teen mothers through YoungLives
Features writer


t 17, Lynsey Williams was a typical teen, anxious to begin her life. She had recently been accepted to her dream college and received several scholarships. Full of hope and anticipation for the life that lay ahead of her, she was excited to begin her final year at Spalding High. However, three weeks before the school year began, those plans came to a screeching halt. Lynsey discovered she was pregnant. Like so many others faced with this situation, she immediately began to despair, seeing the hopes and dreams she had worked so

hard for literally vanished before her eyes. It wasn’t until Gina Ficklen sat down at her lunch table that she realized there may be light at the end of the tunnel. Lynsey knew Ficklen from sports and Young Life, a Christian youth organization in Griffin. What she didn’t know was the impact of the conversation they were about to have. Ficklen invited Lynsey to be a part of YoungLives, a branch of Young Life especially for teenage mothers. This program offers teen moms relief from the isolation and struggle of their daily lives and hope for the future. YoungLives mentors provide friendship, parenting advice and help

Lynsey with a group of girls in the Young Lives program, which helps teen mothers deal with the impact motherhood has on their lives. meeting the practical demands of raising a child. At YoungLives club and camp, moms get to socialize and have fun while their babies are cared for by local volun-

teers. Lynsey jumped at the chance to interact with teens that understood and lived what she was experiencing. Along with around 15 other teenage mothers, she attended monthly meetings. During these sessions, Ficklen also mentored the girls and encouraged them to chase their dreams. “Gina, my mentor, not only told me about Jesus and His forgiving love, but also lived it out. I knew someday I wanted to be a mentor to a girl who felt hopeless, and show her the hope and love that Gina showed me.” As the current YoungLives coordinator, she now
cont, younglives, P. 9

Jessica W. Gregory, Publisher Display advertising: 770-713-5839 Story ideas/submissions:


PO Box 2251, Griffin GA 30224

THE GRIP 770-229-3559


a handmade & vintage boutique, gift shop & furniture store
(we’ve got a little bit of everything) inside ‘stache studio 116 s. sixth street, griffin ::: tues - fri 10-6 | sat 10-5



APRIL 19 - MAY 2 , 2013


School system faces more than $7 million in state austerity cuts

Dreductions from the state
ue to continued austerity

of Georgia, officials of the Griffin-Spalding County School System are facing looming budget woes as more than $7 million annually is not being received from state coffers while mandatory spending is slated to significantly increase. According to Director of Accounting Ryan McLemore, budgetary decisions made over the past several years have positioned the system well for the next two to three years, but beyond that, difficult challenges must be addressed. “We’re right in the middle of our budget process for 2014. It’s getting better, but we’ve still got a lot of decisions to make going into next year,” he said. “We’re looking to restore all the furlough days, but we have a way to go.” McLemore said local officials received information regarding state funding late last week and are now evaluating various options. “State funding remains almost exactly the same as the prior year, so we’re just trying to put it all together. We know we have some increased costs with health insurance, but we’re trying to put it all together and see where the board wants to go,” he said. State funding for public education is mandated in the Georgia Constitution, but since 2003, a large amount has not been provided to the local school system. For fiscal year 2013, the unfunded total reached $7,424,660, but over the past decade totals roughly $40 million.

“If they (state officials) can’t afford it, they just subtract it from the bottom line,” he said. “The biggest unfunded mandate is providing meeting the requirements of QBE (Quality Basic Education) with an unfunded formula in the law.”

local funding. “There’s not really much of an option moving forward,” he said. “We’ve tried to prevent drastic changes from one year to the next, but a lot of that comes from the state each year, too.” Although state funding for fis-

State of Georgia Austerity Reduction in 2013 alone: $7,424,660 State of Georgia Austerity Reduction Since 2003: $40,000,000
One direct affect this funding reduction has forced is an increase in the school millage rate, which now stands at 19.47, only .53 mills under the state cap. “There’s a direct correlation between austerity reductions and millage rate increases. All the austerity cuts are doing is taking away state funding and putting the burden on local taxpayers,” he said. “We’ve tried to factor that in over the past years, but we basically have nowhere to go when it comes to property taxes.” This leaves local administrators with very limited options. One is to decrease expenditures, which McLemore said has been done “pretty extensively” over the past two years – including a reduction of 230 employees since the 2008-09 school term – and the second option is to increase cal year 2013 remains virtually unchanged compared to 2012 amounts, McLemore said the state has notified them of increases in the costs of employee health insurance. For certified employees, of which there are 805, the increase has not been finalized, but will be up to eight percent, and for classified employees, totaling 650, the increase has been set at 33.6 percent over last year. “That’s tricky because you get the same amount of money, but they’ve got cost escalations built into what we have to do,” he explained. It is now estimated that the increased health benefit costs to the system will come in at $1.2 million for 2014. In addition, he said the state has notified local officials that the 33.6 percent in-

crease for classified employees will be applied to 2015. “They’ve basically already told us what the increase will be so that we can prepare,” he said. “We’ve put ourselves in a position where we should be okay through 2015, but beyond that, something is going to have to give.” As an example of how this will impact the system, McLemore said that once the 2015 increases take effect, the Nutrition Department, which is now selfsustaining, will be forced to pull funding from the general fund, which funds operations for the school system. “Money for Quality Basic Education will go there because it can’t sustain the insurance increases,” he said. “By fiscal year 2015, the system’s portion of the cost of insurance will be at 90 percent or more of the nutrition employees’ salaries.” He said administrators are evaluating options with regard to the state health care plan, which is mandatory for certified employees, but not classified staff. “We’re looking at options because it is an unsustainable rate for classified employees. We just have to understand the repercussions because once we opt out of it, we can’t ever go back into it,” McLemore said. Ω Right: The Griffin-Spalding County School System has reduced its roster by 230 personnel since the 2008-09 school term. When comparing local numbers with those of neighboring school systems, the figures indicate Spalding County operates with similar employee numbers with a comparable pay scale.

10,242 students Teacher/Administrator Ratio 12:1 Teacher/Support Ratio 9:1 Teacher/Staff Ratio 5:1 Student Enrollment/All Teachers 14:1 AVERAGE SALARIES: Administrators $84,510.95 Support Personnel $57,674.82 PK-12 Teachers $49,328.81 3,437 students Teacher/Administrator Ratio 17:1 Teacher/Support Person Ratio 13:1 Teacher/Staff Ratio 7:1 Student Enrollment/All Teachers 16:1 AVERAGE SALARIES: Administrators $82,416.83 Support Personnel $58,149.48 PK-12 Teachers $50,910.60 40,695 students Teacher/Administrator Ratio 16:1 Teacher/Support Person Ratio 9:1 Teacher/Staff Ratio 6:1 Student Enrollment/All Teachers 16:1 AVERAGE SALARIES: Administrators $88,835.61 Support Personnel $61,282.26 PK-12 Teachers $61,282.26 4,495 students Teacher/Administrator Ratio 13:1 Teacher/Support Person Ratio 9:1 Teacher/Staff Ratio 5:1 Student Enrollment/All Teachers 15:1 AVERAGE SALARIES: Administrators $86,331.12 Support Personnel $58,915.68 PK-12 Teachers $52,802.76 2,449 students Teacher/Administrator Ratio 11:1 Teacher/Support Person Ratio 10:1 Teacher/Staff Ratio 5:1 Student Enrollment/All Teachers 16:1 AVERAGE SALARIES: Administrators $87,058.89 Support Personnel $59,703.08 PK-12 Teachers $51,470.80
Source: Georgia Department of Education for the 2010-11 school year, which is the most recent data available.






Common Core Standards provide consistency and flexibility says GSCS
throughout the state of Georgia, now follows the mandated standards established by Common Core, the federal education initiative that schools now have to follow in order to receive federal waivers from the 2002 No Child Left Behind law. According to the Common Core website, teachers, parents and community leaders all helped in the development of the Common


TSystem, along with every other system
he Griffin-Spalding County School

Core State Standards, and these standards help teachers know exactly what to teach and when while also creating clear benchmarks for students to reach for each grade. "The standards clearly communicate what is expected of students at each grade level," the website reads. "This will allow our teachers to be better equipped to know exactly what they need to help students learn and establish individualized benchmarks for them. The Common Core State Standards focus on core conceptual understandings and procedures starting in the early grades,

thus enabling teachers to take the time needed to teach core concepts and procedures well—and to give students the opportunity to master them." ( Not without controversy, Common Core has been met with criticism by some who say the federal government should not concern itself with local issues such as academic standards, and wonder whether the exact same standards should be levied upon students nationwide.
cont, common core, P. 3

We own and operate our crematory. We o er a variety of service options from the most basic of cremations to traditional services including casket, visitation and funeral with cremation to follow.

Prearranged Planning, Traditional Funerals, Cremations, Cemetery, Mausoleum, Military Services, Catered Receptions, Floral Assistance, Bronze Memorials and Monuments Serving our community since 1916

Gri n’s ONLY Full Service Funeral Home

APRIL 19 - MAY 2 , 2013



FEATURE STORIES Virtual Public School allows parents to combine home and public school
able courses, and all mandatory core curriculum, such as English/Language Arts, Math, Science and History are, of course, available. Among the benefits will be greater options in selecting electives such as foreign languages, with Mandarin Chinese, French and Japanese among K12 Solutions offerings. Traditional students, on the other hand, are limited to what is offered by their individual school, which is determined by student interest and teacher certification. Burrell said Virtual Public School costs will be determined by the number of students enrolled, their grade level and the type of coursework taken. Elementary school courses will cost $325 each, with students taking six each for both the first and second school term semesters, while standard middle and high courses cost $299 and advanced placement courses are $320. All Virtual Public School students will be subject to state mandated standardized testing, which will also be provided by the school system. Another unique aspect of the Virtual Public School is that K12 Solutions is fully accredited by AdvancEd, the same organization that awards accreditation to the school system. Thus, upon the successful completion of their high school studies and the passage of End of Course Testing, students will receive a diploma from an accredited school system, just as if they had attended school traditionally. Burrell said school personnel are now working to determining the student selection method. “There will be an interview process. We want to make sure they are a good fit for a virtual environment. You do a lot of work on your own,” she said. “The ideal candidate is going to be the student who’s self-disciplined, task oriented, organized and whose learning environment doesn’t have to be a brick-and-mortar school.” Ω


Stional option for their children with the inaugural year

palding County parents will soon have a new educa-

of the Griffin-Spalding County School System’s Virtual Public School, set to kick off with the 2013-14 school term. The program will allow students from kindergarten through 12th grade to take both their core curriculum course work and electives online. According to Assistant Superintendent for Instruction Denise Burrell, the goal is to enroll 100 students in the program. Among the students the Virtual Public School program may appeal to are those currently homeschooling. “We’re looking for students who are not in our school system now,” she said. “You’ll have an accredited curriculum and we’ll be providing this at no cost to the student.” One significant benefit of the program is the receipt of a diploma from an accredited school system. “If I were homeschooling, this would be an excellent opportunity,” Burrell said. Virtual Public School students will be required to successfully complete all mandatory core curriculum, as well as electives. Required courses will meet all state and federal guidelines just as in traditional schools, but Virtual Public School students will have greater options available than do their traditional counterparts. “You also get a lot of electives that we don’t offer here, but they do meet Department of Education standards,” she said. The increased number of options is based on the offerings of K12 Solutions, which will provide the virtual classroom and teachers for the local school system. Burrell said K12 Solutions provides a list of all avail-

Join our sewing classes
We’ll make it oh-sew-easy!

Boarding & Grooming
Whether a short visit or extended stay, our four-legged friends will always have a place to hang their collars.
FREE BLUEBERRY FACIAL Blueberry facials clean tear streaks and provides anti-oxidants while smelling great! Safe for cats and dogs. Must bring this coupon.

We also do alterations!

Wedding & prom dresses for sale
108 N. Hill Street Downtown Griffin

visit our website or facebook for monthly specials!

Schooling options helps parents choose what best suits children

educational options as are available today. From public and private schools to homeschools and virtual classrooms, parents may choose the educational setting they deem best suited for their children. Despite these options, parents may still feel as if the ideal education for their children remains elusive. Lauren Flanagan, the mother of two daughters – one of whom is still enrolled in the Griffin-Spalding County School System, is a prime example of one for whom the perfect choice is not so readily apparent. Although her children have both been public school students, she and her husband, Pat, are now considering homeschooling. “I was homeschooled for my final semester of 11th grade,” she said, explaining that health issues led to that decision. “I was lucky that my mom kind of looked outside the box on that. My mom let me study the way I studied.” She returned to public school for her senior year, graduating on time with her class. “My mom gave me the opportunity to do that and get caught up, so what’s stopping me from thinking outside the box when it comes to my daughter’s

Nfamilies had as many
ever before


education?” she said. “We have a lot more options now.” However, despite the options now available, Flanagan said they have not yet found the perfect choice. “One huge drawback is the inability to participate in sports,” she said. “If we knew that was available and she maintained her grades with a virtual academy, it would be a done deal for us. We would want to see if it was a good fit for her.” As it now stands, however, the Flanagans are undecided with regard to whether she will continue her educational career in the local school system or at home, but they do consider a virtual online classroom as a viable option for their daughter. “We’ve decided that, obviously, with a limited number of students they’ll accept each year, we would need to decide soon,” she said. “We’ll have some more family meetings, as well as with her school counselor, to see what they can offer her that might make her feel more comfortable about staying in school.” While each choice has its benefits, a virtual classroom offers some that have great appeal for the Flanagan family, such as a great deal of flexibility for the educational process. “My daughter likes to do things; she likes to be active. It’s challenging for her to sit through seven classes a day,” she said. “I’ve always

felt that if she could work at her own schedule and at her own pace, that was for the best.” For the Flanagans, the final decision will be based upon which choice best suits their daughter’s unique personality and needs. “Everyone has different learning styles. When you do online schooling or homeschooling, you can

test out different styles and see what works best for your child,” she said. “For something that may help our daughter get where she wants to go in the future, it’s worth considering the options.” Ω

« Common Core, cont.
Officials of the Griffin-Spalding County School System say Common Core is beneficial to students without removing all local control. According to Director of PreK-12 Curriculum and Instruction Ashley Crawford, as recipients of federal monies under Race to the Top – a $4 billion grant program distributed as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 – Spalding County was one of the first counties in Georgia to adopt the Common Core standards. “We decided we wanted to be on the forefront. We want to shape what this looks like in Georgia,” Crawford said. A Common Core proponent, she said the policy will benefit students by establishing increased consistency nationwide. “Children who move state-to-state should now have a lot more continuity and even students who move within the state,” she said. However, she said this does not translate to a system of overbearing federal control of curriculum. “There were some requirements, but there is also some flexibility. The standards are established, but we have the flexibility with what materials we want to use to teach those standards,” she said. “Teachers still have the freedom to get to know their students and determine the best path for them to meet or exceed the standards.” Therefore, the decision making process with regard to textbooks, software and teaching materials remains within Spalding County. Assistant Superintendent for Instruction Denise Burrell explained, “There are the standards and elements you must cover, but we can choose how we achieve that.” Ω

STATE CERT. 0790 & 0755

Risk Reduction Program Defensive Driving Drug Possession



Private parties start at $150(kids) $210(adults) ::: Call 770-229-6599 to check availability ::: ::: 116 s. sixth street, griffin

kid’s & adult birthday parties ::: bachelorettes ::: date nights ::: wedding & baby showers ::: and just because!



APRIL 19 - MAY 2 , 2013


Help your children avoid student debt burden
Icollege kid these days.
t’s not so easy being a The job market for recent graduates has been shaky while, at the same time, students are leaving school with more debt than ever before. If you have children who will someday be attending college, should you be worried? You might indeed have cause for concern. Americans now owe more on student loans than on credit cards, according to the Federal Bank of New York, the U.S. Department of Education and other sources. For the college class of 2011, the most recent year for which figures are available, the average student loan debt was about $26,500, according to the Institute for College Access and Success’s Project on Student Debt. This type of debt load, coupled with the struggles to find a well-paying job commensurate with their education, is causing many recent graduates to get off on the wrong foot in terms of developing savings and investment strategies that could help them throughout their lives. So, what can you do? If you want to help your kids pay for college, you may want to consider a 529 plan. When you invest in a 529 plan, all withdrawals will be free from federal income taxes, as long as the money is used for that you might have used for other financial goals — such as a comfortable retirement. Of course, it’s not an “either-or” situation — there’s nothing stopping you from contributing to a 529 plan, Coverdell account or custodial account along with your 401(k) and IRA. Clearly, though, it will take discipline and perseverance on your part to save and invest for both your children’s education and your own retirement. Like everyone else, you don’t have unlimited resources. But you do have another ally — time. The earlier you begin investing for education and retirement, the greater your chances of achieving your goals in these areas. And by understanding how your goals interact, you can work to make sure you don't inadvertently derail one when saving for another. Avoiding the student loan “debt trap” while still making progress toward your retirement savings will require creative thinking — and both you and your children may have to make some sacrifices along the way. But the ultimate goals — a college degree that isn’t one big IOU and a comfortable retirement — are worth the effort.
This article was written by Edward Jones for use by your local Edward Jones Financial Advisor.

Shedding light on the shingles
Sfor quite a while without seeing certain
ometimes in private practice one goes conditions, but then the next five patients who come in seem to have it. It seems like an unadvertised blue-light special. After a long dry spell, I have seen a resurgence of shingles recently. It is a very painful condition caused by a viral infection in a nerve. Veterans of this problem will tell you that there is much suffering involved, but our patients have a very different story to tell, as I will describe in a few paragraphs. If you have ever had chickenpox (98% of Americans have had it as a child), the varicella-zoster virus that causes shingles is hiding in you somewhere. The virus is an opportunist that waits until your immune system is compromised. Usually this happens in older adults whose immune systems are inherently less efficient related to age, but it can happen in younger people as well when their immune systems are compromised by drugs they may be taking, such as prescribed or non-prescribed steroids, or by other conditions, such as cancer. There is a characteristic rash that follows the nerve that the virus infects, so you can track the rash on the skin. Early in the infection, there will be sores (pustules) visible. At this stage it is contagious, so someone who comes in contact with you at this stage may develop chickenpox. It is advisable when you have these open sores to stay away from people at risk, such as newborns, children, seniors, and anyone who has not had chickenpox. There is no good or quick pharmacological treatment that cures shingles. There are antiviral drugs that are prescribed, but the condition will last from two to four weeks as it runs its course. Patients use topical anesthetics, ice packs, or even steroids or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) to drive down the inflammation. There is a new live virus bovine vaccine for people over 60 years of age. Side effects include allergic reactions, pain, fever, swelling, flu-like symptoms, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and fatigue, among others. A quick look at that list makes me prefer to take my chances with the virus itself. As I mentioned above, our patients have a different story. Typically, we can take the pain of shingles away within a few minutes, and remove the skin lesions within a few days. Our patients are ecstatic to find relief quickly with something that has no side effects, is painless, inexpensive, fast-acting, and easy. I am using low level laser therapy (LLLT) on




shingles with great success. This is infrared light that creates no heat, thus no risk of burning. Using four different wavelengths of infrared light in a single treatment, we are able to stimulate the affected nerve and surrounding tissues in a way that increases protein synthesis and energy production in the cells, which greatly accelerates the healing process. Numerous studies have shown a rapid and dramatic improvement in shingles and postherpetic neuralgia with the use of LLLT. The first patient on whom we used LLLT was a severe diabetic with heart disease, so her immune system was significantly depressed. Her infection was about two months old by the time she came to my attention. Her pain was gone within 20 minutes, and the mottled trail on the skin was gone within two days. Another patient we saw recently had about a five week head start before we began treatment. Because the infection was in a thoracic nerve, trailing from her spine under her arm to her chest, she was unable to wear a bra or any shirt or blouse that would touch her skin. After four laser treatments, she was able to get dressed and return to work without any pain at all. Treatment is usually done in a series. So far, I have not needed more than five or six laser treatments lasting 20 or 30 minutes per session. I have been very happy with the results, as it is close to an ideal treatment: inexpensive, readily available, no side effects, safe, effective, and painless. Shingles can be very painful, frustrating and difficult to control using medical treatments now available, but LLLT works quite well. I hope this sheds some light on the problem. Ω For this and more articles concerning health and healthcare, please visit www.

qualified college expenses. (However, non-qualified withdrawals may be subject to ordinary income tax plus a 10% penalty on the earnings portion.) Contribution limits are high, and, contributions may be eligible for a tax deduction or credit for residents in certain states. A 529 plan, while valuable, is not the only college savings vehicle available. You may also want to consider a Coverdell Education Savings Account, which, like a 529 plan, can generate tax-free earnings if the money is used for higher education expenses. However, a Coverdell account’s contribution limits are much lower than those of a 529 plan. You could also establish a custodial account, known as an UGMA or UTMA, which offers some tax benefits and no contribution limits. Nonetheless, while these vehicles may help you save and invest for college, they may also divert resources

The columnists on these pages are local business owners and church leaders. These columns reflect their opinions, which are not necessarily those of The Grip or Grip staff. We welcome responses to these columns, or any Grip article. Please send responses in writing as a signed letter to the editor to or post to PO Box 2251, Griffin, GA 30224.

APRIL 19 - MAY 2 , 2013




Be Yourself.
of my past wardrobe battles with my daughter, Anna. I finally decided to stop fighting that one. Several days ago, I went clothes shopping for her. This time, I put on “Anna Takle glasses.” I bought items I probably would have never chosen for her myself. But, I knew she would love them. When she came home from school, I showed her the bag. She began taking the items from the bag. At first she smiled so big. Then, I looked and saw huge tears streaming down her face. “You get me. You finally get me.” She told me. Isn’t that what we all want? For people to “get” us? For the ability to truly be our unique selves and be accepted and loved? Loved not in spite of it. But, because of it. We are fearfully and wonderfully made. We are a masterpiece crafted by the Creator. To be different. My father always says, “There is unity in diversity.” We just have to not only accept diversity, but embrace it. There is great reward for being who you are. In the Bible, David’s life was a testimony to this fact. When David agreed to go fight Goliath, he was given heavy armor to wear. 38 Then Saul gave David his own armor - a bronze helmet and a coat of mail. 39David put it on, strapped the sword over it, and took a step or two to see what it was like, for he had never worn such things before. “I can’t go


IThe Grip long enough, you are aware

f you’ve followed my blog or articles in


Mike Lester & Jimmy Thiel 404-510-3862 Monday through Saturday 10am - 5pm

in these,” he protested to Saul. “I’m not used to them.” So David took them off again. (1 Samuel 17:38-39) David had to fight the way he knew. He had to be himself. He picked up five smooth stones from a stream and put them into his shepherd’s bag. Then, armed only with his shepherd’s staff and sling, he started across the valley to fight the Philistine. (1 Samuel 17:40) There was reward for David in being who HE was. And, he kept Goliath’s armor as a keepsake to remind him of it. Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, “There is a time in every man’s education when he arrives at the conviction that imitation is suicide.” This is a conviction that Anna Takle has come to early. And, a conviction that I GET to embrace. Be yourself. Make the decision to be who you are. This world needs YOU. Ω


430 E. Taylor Street, Griffin


Frozen meal foods: Healthy or not?
fruit/veggie icon from the Produce for Better Health Foundation. When choosing an over all frozen meal for dinner, try to make sure it contains all the components of a healthful home-cooked dish. For example, look for entrées with at least a halfcup of fruits or vegetables, about one-half to one cup of whole grains, and a protein source of about 14 to 21 grams on the nutrition label. If you usually eat a frozen entrée that is low in fruits and veggies, then you can add a side salad or your favorite fruit or veggie to serve with it. Also try to look for five grams of fiber or more in your meal. If the meal does not have milk or diary, adding a low-fat dairy source to help balance the frozen meal by providing calcium, such as one-half cup of skim milk. Some shoppers are still trying to find meals that are fast, with fewer calories, and still taste great. Select a meal with 350 to 500 calories. You may be tempted to buy that meal less than 200 calories per serving, but that barely composes a snack. Many low-calorie meals won’t provide a substantial amount of energy or the necessary vitamins and minerals your body needs and you’ll be more tempted to indulge in a high-calorie, lownutrition food or beverage later. If you do buy the lowcalorie frozen meals within that caloric range, be sure to complement the meal with vegetables, dairy, and/ or a healthful fat such as unsalted nuts. Most frozen meals have added fat for flavor and shelf life. Try to limit unhealthful fats, by choosing frozen entrées with no more than two grams of saturated fat and no trans fat. Remember this one key fact; just because a label indicates zero grams of trans fat, this doesn’t mean there is none in the product. Food manufacturers are permitted to state that a product has zero grams of trans fat per serving as long as their product contains less than 0.5 grams per serving. To verify whether the food does contain trans fat, be sure to read the ingredient list. For example, f you see the words “partially hydrogenated oil,” then the product contains small amounts of trans fat and is thus would not be the best choice. Instead look for frozen entrées that use olive oil or canola oil that will help to get hearthealthy monounsaturated fats. One of the hardest “added ingredients” for consumers to watch is the sodium. The sodium content is probably the worst and most excessive part of foods, even in the healthier brands. The average healthy person, who does not have high blood pressure or heart disease, should consume no more than 2,300 mg of sodium per day (divide that by three that is 766 mg per meal). Most packaged meals surpass this, usually having 1,000 mg per serving or more in many cases. To avoid getting more sodium than needed, read labels carefully and select items that contain no more than 600 mg of sodium per serving. To make the process easier, search for products claiming “low sodium” or “no sodium added.” The main thing to remember when shopping is low calorie does not mean the food is healthful or less processed. Try to focus the diet on fresh, whole foods as much as possible even when frozen. Ω



When shopping for fruits and vegetables I will always tell people, fresh is best, but most of us are on a budget, therefore were always looking for the best deals. I would never stop encouraging a person to eat fresh, wholesome foods; however, we can’t ignore the fact shoppers are going to continue eating frozen meals—whether for convenience, lack of culinary skills, or portion control. A frozen meal can be a quick and viable alternative when someone is short on time or ingredients. There are certain words and phrases we should all look for on the product as soon as we pick it up. Two of the first words we should look for is “whole fresh” foods or “whole frozen” fruits or veggies. These products would be the most available, easier and healthier of the frozen meals, which may help with smaller portions and less processed foods. To avoid products that have more processed ingredients, try to notice how long the ingredient lists is with added sugars, fillers, and additives that sound unfamiliar. Some other key words to look for on food packaging are the Heart-Check Mark from the American Heart Association, the Whole Grain Stamp of approval from the Whole Grains Council, and the

30th Anniversary



APRIL 19 - MAY 2 , 2013



PBR - Southern rock with an indie country flare
Staff writer;

Visit one of our many Spalding County locations for more information. PetroSouth,

Call us -- we can help you and arrange it in the privacy of your own home for a fraction of the cost of sleep centers! Fully diagnostic, convenient, inexpensive, easy!

initials "PBR" may bring to mind, I got to chill with one of the founders of Pearl Bottom Radio (PBR) and talk about what’s been going on this band, which began in Griffin in 2007.   “It wasn’t until way later in the band that one of the members pointed out our abbreviation was the same as Pabst Blue Ribbon beer”, said Lee White, lead vocalist about the exact likeness of the beer and band acronyms. So we sat wishing we had a cold one and talked more about the music. The name Pearl Bottom Radio cast its origins very early in White’s life. “My Grandmother used to have a radio in her house that sat up on a  shelf. I could

Lbeverage you that the

ike the cold and frothy

GCA gets "Inspired by Africa"
The Griffin Choral Arts community chorus, under the direction of Dr. Stephen J. Mulder, will present a concert entitled “Inspired by Africa” on Thursday, May 2, at 7:30 PM at the Gordon State College Fine Arts Auditorium (419 College Drive), in Barnesville. Tickets are $10 general admission at the door or in advance in Griffin at Artistic Flowers and Gifts and J. Michael’s Frameworks; in Barnesville at Goggans Florist; in Zebulon at A Novel Experience bookstore; and in Thomaston at the TUAC Gallery. “Inspired by Africa” features special guest composer Paul Basler from the University of Florida. GCA will perform Basler’s MISSA KENYA accompanied by the composer on French horn. This is the final concert of GCA’s sixth season and the twenty-fourth concert presented since the fall of 2007. For more information about Griffin Choral Arts call 770-468-3072 or visit the website:

never reach it but the bottom would always sparkle. The  bottom  was pearl,” He says. The radio made its impact on White and he knew the name of the band before it even started. PBR music is true southern rock with an indie country flare. Many people over the years have said that the band has its very own unique sound, true to themselves. Some of the bands influences are the Drive by Truckers, the Black Crowes, Blackberry Smoke, and Led Zeppelin with many more. The band played its first gig (or informal gathering of friends) at what is now the Hill Street Market and Gourmet Pops. The audience enjoyed themselves and the feedback was positive so the next step for the band was getting gigs. The first show from the  band  was in a downtown Griffin bar. It wasn’t long before the band began playing in surrounding areas including festivals such Smoke on the Water, and the Cherry Blossom festival in Macon. “At first we were very loose and gritty and have progressed to a more smooth and polished sound,” White states. “We have really found our

own sound.” “We want people to be able to hear our lyrics and relate to them,” said White. “I mostly dream the lyrics, or come up with them in the shower they aren’t specifically about anything at first. It’s later that I realize the meaning behind the songs.”    Recently having lost and replaced a member, the band is currently working to get back up to speed while also writing new material. “The goal at this point is to get into the studio and record our first professional LP after three self recorded albums,” said White.   The band is also currently booking gigs. Expect to see much more of PBR over the summer as the get ready to unfold the next chapter in their history. “We really enjoy hearing from our  audience

what  our music speaks to them. We really want it to make them feel something,” said White. PBR is working on getting new merchandising and coming up with a good bit of new material. To hear PBR and check out more about the band you can visit, find them also on  Facebook and Ω

Robert Hayden DC, PhD, FICC

210 Rock Street, Gri n


Nature Photography Show in Zebulon
Zebulon, where members of the Georgia Nature Photographers’ Association have selected their best work to be put on display. The GNPA-Central show will be held during the month of May at A Novel Experience bookstore in downtown Zebulon. GNPA-Central members will be hosting a reception on Saturday, May 18 from 6:30 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. at the bookstore. Refreshments will be served and the public is invited to attend. Members will be available during the reception to discuss GNPA, nature photography and their personal photographs. GNPA-Central is a regional chapter of GNPA, the largest nature photography club in Georgia. GNPA-Central meets on the third Tuesday of each month from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Joel Edwards Public Library located at 7077 U.S. Highway 19 in Zebulon. GNPA is dedicated to helping nature photographers of all skill levels improve their photography by hosting professional speakers, workshops and photography competitions. Members also have an opportunity to participate in special member shoots. If you have a love of nature and photography, GNPA-Central provides a great oppor-

Still can’t sell your home?
Let RMA rent and manage it for you.

Nan upcoming photography exhibit in

ature lovers, mark your calednars for

A bull moose in Aspen, one of Jimmy Day's submissions to the exhibit. tunity to learn in addition to sharing the value of the natural world around us with others. According to Francis Hauke, President of GNPA-Central, “We have a very talented group of nature photographers. Each member has a unique vision when they photograph nature. Some of the images are taken in our immediate area while others are from across the country. Our show is a mixture of wildlife, exotic birds, breathtaking landscapes and flora. We invite everyone to visit the show and see nature as we see it.” Ω

owners Jared Cordova & Bill Jones Jr.

Commercial & Residential Updated Listings Weekly 770-228-0405

Professional Property Management
127 S. Hill St.


All your favorite ice cream avors are back along with a few new ones!!

Across from Rose’s Shopping Center 1119 Zebulon Road. Griffin, GA

APRIL 19 - MAY 2 , 2013



ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT "Off the Wall" artists needed for Discovery Channel's "PitMasters" Griffin's first plein air art competition will film at Barnesville BBQ & Blues




his year’s Doc HolBeer and Wine Festival will have an addition – the arts! Local artists, crafters, makers and vintage ware peddlers will line Sixth Street with awesome handmade items, art, repurposed junk, and vintage stuff all for sale. Artists will also be scattered around downtown on June 8 from 2 to 5 p.m., busily painting in what will be the inaugural downtown Griffin “Off the Wall” plein air art contest, sponsored by ‘stache studio. In a timed battle of the brushes, Off the Wall artists will begin with a blank canvas or paper and complete a work of art in just three hours. Why “Off the Wall,” you ask? Because art doesn’t have to compliment the wall color. Or the sofa. We’re also kind of bending the “rules” (are there rules in art?) about what a plein air art contest is all about – painting a scene that’s right in front of you while outdoors – by widening the inspiration scope from just landscapes to also include (hopefully some off the wall, kooky) pieces inspired by Doc Holliday, mustaches, or beer and wine. We’re looking for amateur as well as seasoned artists and art of all


plein air art competition

Icasing some of the best
n its ninth year of show-

Saturday, June 8; 2-6p.m. downtown Griffin
“because art doesn’t have to match the sofa”
kinds including realism, folk, abstract, and any mixture of the above. Mediums can include oil, acrylic, pastel, watercolor – anything that can be accomplished in three hours and in an outdoor setting. Artists will check in the day of the Doc Holliday Beer Festival, Saturday, June 8, at ‘stache studio in downtown Griffin. Their canvas or paper will be stamped, and off they’ll go to find the perfect spot in the downtown area to complete their masterpiece. At the end of three hours, artists must bring their work back to ‘stache studio and will have time to prepare their pieces for display. The public is invited to stroll around downtown to watch the artists work, view the finished pieces and make bids to purchase the art between 5 and 6 p.m., as well as vote in the peoples’ choice award. A panel of juried artists will choose a first and second place winner, who will receive cash prizes. Proceeds from the registration fee and 20 percent of the art sales will be donated to the Doc Holliday Beer, Wine and Arts festival’s chosen nonprofit organization, TogetherWorks, whose main charity is to help soldiers experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder, as well as other local charities. Artists (including people who don’t consider themselves “serious” artists) interested in competing in Off the Wall should submit a registration form and $25 entry fee before Friday, May 31. Forms can be found at or picked up at ‘stache studio, located at 116 S. Sixth Street in downtown Griffin. Registration after May 31 up to the day of the event will be $35. For more information, call 770-229-6599. Ω

barbecue and blues music in the south, the annual Barnesville BBQ and Blues Festival will be the backdrop for Discovery Channel's BBQ Pitmasters show, where three national teams will be competing in the first step toward the prestigous PitMaster title. BBQ PitMasters executive producer Ron Simon said after filming a special on Georgia barbecue last year, he knew they had to return to Georgia. "We're really excited to be there. We're Mo Pro BBQ team members Joe Hortz and JD Kincaid prepare beef looking for great places brisket during last year's cook off. Photo: Allison Heiney across the country to highlight in Destination America, and Barnesville stood out," out for next year's competitors. To double said Simon. the chances of being on national television, Barnesville is one of only nine cities cho- those who plan to attend or compete in sen as a location to film the initial rounds, the festival can also visit the Oink Joint in joining cities such as Pensicola, Florida; downtown Zebulon on Friday, April 26, beMartinsville, Indiana; Mobile, Alabama; and tween noon and 1 p.m., when the PitMasOsage, Kansas, "We're trying to go to all ters will be filming a separate segment on the places that barbecue is thriving," said the local restaurant, who has placed well in Simon. many state barbecue championships. Though Simon couldn't reveal who the BBQ and Blues Festival chairman T.J. Imteams were or in what meat categories they berger shared his hopes that Barnesville would be competing, he did offer some pride will be evident to viewers of the show. hints, saying that Georgia was represented "I am confident that those watching our epvery well among the 27 hopeful PitMas- isode will see how the pride we have in our ters. As for what meats may make an ap- town translates into making us great hosts pearance, Simon shared that in the show's to so many...Just think when so many viewefforts to highlight the local barbecue cul- ers around this great country of ours watch ture, they always try to throw in a regional the Barnesville episode of BBQ PitMasters element. "So expect a pork product." and say to themselves, 'What a neat little Simon also confided that at these barbe- town and great place to live,' you can have cue events, producers are often on the look- the pride in saying, 'We already know.'" Ω

now through april 21
The Incredible Xpanding Hose
25 ft. hose that automatically expands and contracts

Micracle-Gro® Moisture Control Potting Mix
7301609 Limit 2 at this price.

2 cu. ft. Feeds plants for up to 6 months.

Knock Out® Roses

3 gal. container. Assorted varieties and colors. While supplies last.

30% OFF all regular priced items in our gift department!

Expires April 21

126 W. College Street, Gri n || 770-233-0902 Monday - Friday 8am-7pm Saturday 8am-6pm Sunday 12pm - 5pm




APRIL 19 - MAY 2 , 2013

calendar :::
Thursday, April 18; Flint River Regional Library Book Club; Jennifer Chiaverini's "Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker"; 6-7 p.m.; Library Board Room; Admission is free. All interested adult readers are invited to attend. Saturday, April 20; James 1:27 Spring Sale; Second Baptist Church 501 W. Broad Street, Griffin; vendors will be selling hand made, vintage and yard sale items; all proceeds benefit two missions. Saturday, April 20; Road Side Clean Up by the Grow Better Group; 9 a.m. to noon; cleaning sections of HWY 16 West and HWY 92; meet at Safehouse in downtown Griffin.

Saturday, April 20; Storyteller Sam; 11 a.m.; bring the little ones to hear one of Sam's favorite stories; A Novel Experience in downtown Zebulon. Saturday, April 20; Evan Barber & the Dead Gamblers - Kitchen Drawer concert series; 8 p.m.; $5; Bankstreet Cafe in downtown Griffin. Tuesday, April 23; Annual Iris Show - presented by the Flint River Iris Society; Local Growers will have their irises on display for the public in a judged competition; 1-4 p.m.; for more information call 770-2273109.; Admission is free, first fifty guests will receive a free iris.

April 26-27; Annual Barnesville BBQ & Blues festival in downtown Barnesville; music, food, barbeque contest and painting; for more information visit www. Saturday, April 27; Antique Ramble; see back page for list and map of shops participating; refreshments, sales and specials at many local shops; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, April 27; Paint the Town Plein Air Art Competition; Downtown Barnesville; artists will produce work on-site in downtown Barnesville, featuring an aspect of Barnesville BBQ and Blues or the community; art will be judged and placed for sale; $30 per artist, $40 at the door; cash awards for first, second

and third places; for more information visit www. April 27-28; The Great Griffin Mayfling; Griffin Bicylce Coallition Bike Rodeo ;10 a.m. ; for more info visit and griffinbicylecoalition Tuesday, May 7; The Collective, a meeting of local artists; 6:30 p.m.; BYOB and bring your own project if you'd like; 'stache studio at 116 S. Sixth Street in downtown Griffin; call 770-2296599 for more information


poll of the week

Would you be more likely to utilize the Virtual Public School program if your child could participate in public school extracurricular activities?

Should property owners with no children in the public school system be able to "opt out" of paying school taxes?

For more events, visit The Grip's calendar at community-calendar

Last week's results:

Yes ::: 60% - No ::: 38% - Other ::: 2% (47 total votes)

Would SUBMITTED he Spalding County you like to T Ferst Foundation parsee your ticipated in United Bank’s Piggy Bank Day by regisorganization's tering children from birth press release to age 5, as long as their attended the piggy or info here? parents bank event. “We really apEmail sheila@

Spalding County Ferst Foundation registers children at United Bank’s Piggy Bank Day
children, ages birth to five. The expenses for the books and mailings are $28 per year per child. The funds to support the program come from Spalding County individual, business, and club donations. 100 percent of the donations go to buy and mail the books to Spalding County children. “The Ferst Foundation provides a unique opportunity for us all to invest in the education of young Georgians,” says Tera Cochran, Director of Operations for the Georgia Ferst Foundation.      According to a press release on Tuesday, April 16 The Ferst Foundation for Childhood Literacy has received  Charity Navigator’s coveted 4-star rating for the third year in a row. The 4-star rating, Charity Navigator’s highest, is given to nonprofits that practice exceptional fiscal responsibility and governance in fulfilling their mission. The rating also shows that the Ferst Foundation and its generous supporters are on the right path to helping Georgia’s children perform in school and in life through literacy, effectively working against the fact that children not reading on grade level by third grade are four times more likely to leave high school without a diploma. To donate, please send a check payable to Spalding County Ferst Foundation to P.O. Box 2092, Griffin, Georgia 30224. Donations are tax-deductible, and 100 percent of donations in Spalding County go toward purchasing books. Ferst Foundation members absorb the cost of printing and stamps. Ω

preciate Jim Ogletree and the United Bank staff for allowing us to be a part of this fun day,” said Diane Pruett, a member of the founInclusion for publication is dation’s Community Action subject to space availability Team. “We were able to tell and content review. people about the Spalding County Ferst Foundation for Childhood Literacy and register 16 new children. It was a great way to spread the word about who we are and what we are able to do for Spalding County Children.” The Ferst Foundation mails free books to the homes of Spalding County

Join our sewing classes

Arkeyuius Searcy enjoys a book, Alaska’s ABC Bears, while his mother, Sharika Hughley, signs him up to receive free books from the Spalding County Ferst Foundation at United Bank’s Piggy Bank Day.

We’ll make it oh-sew-easy!

We also do alterations!

Wedding & prom dresses for sale
108 N. Hill Street Downtown Griffin

Independent Women ::: A Hair Studio
::: attention hair stylists & nail techs :::
Individual rooms are now leasing at the iconic "Coke Building" on East Taylor Street to stylists who want to operate independently in the privacy of their own space and with control over their own expenses, in a location that is new, attractive, highly visible and a ordable. Each "station" is a self contained room - nished as the tenant wishes plus storage space for supplies yet at the same time tenants share some common areas such as reception, bathroom, shampoo and ample parking.
To explore this unique opportunity, call 770-229-9000 or email

Shoe Repair & Saddlery

· Patches sewn · · zippers & snaps · & repairs
Bring it to Susie to see if she can fix it!


122 S. 8th Street 770.228.7974 • Large bike inventory • Apparel & Shoes • Accessories •Friendly staff •Gift Certificates

Road • Mountain • Hybrid

678-692-8175 116 E. College St.
STATE CERT. 0790 & 0755

(after April 31 for June / May 31 for July)

Risk Reduction Program Defensive Driving Drug Possession

770-229-6599 | | 116 S. Sixth Street, Griffin



APRIL 19 - MAY 2 , 2013




Join Survivors in the fight against cancer at this year’s Relay for Life
Futral Road Elementary

months leading up to the annual Relay for Life, met to prepare for this year’s event to be held on May 3-4 from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. on the fields at Spalding High School. The highlight of the night was the special speaker Aimee Martin. She is a cancer survivor who had been invited to speak by Relay for Life’s co-chair Myron Jones, her fourth grade teacher at Moreland Elementary School. She gave an inspiring speech in which she shared: “My name is Aimee Martin and I’m here to talk to you about why I relay. When I was four, I was diagnosed with Burkitt ’s Lymphoma. I was very sick and scared. I spent about four months in the hospital getting my treatments. While I was in the hospital, there were many wonderful men and women from organizations like the American Cancer Society that helped my stay to be a little more comfortable. As I have gotten older, I realize that the American Cancer Society, through groups like Relay for Life, raise money for research to heal cancers. On February 4, 2013, I celebrated being cancer free for five years. I look forward to each year of my life and every Relay for Life that I can participate in.” Aimee is one of the many survivors that will be on hand to walk the track at Relay for Life this year. Security is a top priority at the event. Some new rules are being put in to place to ensure that the entire night is safe, en-

Ogroup of volunteers, who work for

n a recent spring evening, a large

Aimee Martin, cancer survivor, with Relay for Life's co-chair Myron Jones, her fourth grade teacher at Moreland Road Elementary School. joyable, and fun. Sheriff Wendell Beam and the Spalding County Sherriff’s Department will be on hand to provide security. Everyone at the event will have to wear a wristband. Anyone over the age of five, not wearing a wristband, will be asked to leave. Spalding County residents can buy wristbands at “Relay for Life Bank Night” to be

held at First National Bank on April 30th at from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. and again on May 2 at the Spalding High Track from 4-6 p.m. The wristbands cost $5, but everyone purchasing one will be given Relay Bucks to spend inside the gates on food and other items. In addition adults are responsible for the actions of their children, or for those children in their care while on the property. Though Relay for Life loves pets, no pets are allowed on the grounds except service dogs. No bikes, roller blades, skate boards, or scooters are allowed on the track or in the parking lot. Scooters will be allowed for service purposes only. Relay for Life will have fun for the entire family and a great entertainment lineup. One highlight of the night will be the Survivor Lap, when survivor’s take to the track. At 9 p.m. the beautiful Luminaria Ceremony will be held as the luminaries are lit and a bagpiper plays Amazing Grace. The evening will include music from the gospel group Second Coming, as well as country music from Jason Hoard and Lauren Ashley, who have both released new albums this year. Later in the night, the bands JR’s Backyard and Eye of Extremities will perform.

Spalding County residents can be a part of Relay for Life in many ways: purchase a Luminaria, Torch, or Relay Reel in honor or in memory of a friend or loved one. You can purchase these online at www.relayforlife. org/SpaldingGA or call Laura Beaber at (770) 632-6934. Purchase a Relay Reel message that will be shown throughout the night on a giant screen. This new part of Relay will be such an encouragement to survivors as they see your message and your support in the effort to do away with cancer. Help advertise and fundraise for Relay for Life by “liking” the Relay for Life of Spalding County Facebook Page along with sharing on your page and other social media. Help Relay for Life get the word out! Go to and make a personal donation to the fight against cancer. You can credit a team with the donation. The top fund-raising teams will be recognized at Relay for Life on May 4th. Join survivors like Aimee Martin at this year’s Relay for Life event as they make a difference in the fight against cancer on May 3-4. Ω

Adoptable Pet of the Week: Maxwell
Young Male Shar Pei Mix
Typical puppy that loves to play and play and chase his brothers around the yard. He is 16 weeks old and is fully vetted now. He would love to have hs forever family pick him now. Please contact me at if you would like to meet this cute little guy. He is the only one in the litter that has some of the Shar Pei appearance.

For more adoptable pets, visit

« YoungLives, cont.
has that chance. Under Lynsey’s leadership, the group has grown to around 4045 teen mothers in the area, including six of the original members, and extended to include monthly “Lunch and Learn” sessions for teenage mothers at Griffin High, and monthly “Family Club” meetings where members can bring their families for fellowship. “My hope is that the mentoring relationships formed through YoungLives will transition to true, life-long, give and take friendships that will extend into all areas of their lives”, adds Lynsey. Because of Lynsey’s experience as a teen mother and the impact of YoungLives on her own life, she shines as the program’s coordinator. “YoungLives has the power to have a tremendous positive impact on two generations of our community” states Lynsey. Although it is an extremely difficult situation for a teen to deal with a teenage pregnancy, current statistics reveal that approximately 10 percent of girls 19 and under do get pregnant. Just like her mentor, now Lynsey hopes to lighten the burden for these girls through the mentoring program. ”I pray that God continues to favor YoungLives and bring more mentors on board. They are crucial to help provide a sense of hope for these girls during those critical first few months of pregnancy” states Lynsey. Lindsey, now 22, is happily married to her high school sweetheart, Jamarcus and mother of their girls, Abbigail, 4 and Emma, 2. Their family continues to grow, as they anticipate the arrival of baby Hope any day.

Lynsey and her husband, Jamarcus, with their two girls Abbigail and Emma. She hopes her mentoring efforts will inspire others in the community to become volunteers as well. She notes, “Our program desperately needs more mentors as well as donors to help sustain the costs of operating the program. We also ask for prayers for YoungLives and all its participants”. A Flapjack Fundraiser at Applebee’s in Griffin on Saturday, June 22 is planned to fund scholarships for the girls for camp this summer. This annual fundraiser is popular with the girls as they participate by serving breakfast to the community. Tickets are $7 each. To purchase tickets, get involved, volunteer or donate to YoungLives or learn more about the program, contact Lynsey at 678-603-5218. Ω




APRIL 19 - MAY 2 , 2013

Public Forum: Local officials answer your questions
Public Forum relays questions from readers and gives all local officials an opportunity to address those questions and current events. This feature is intended to be an additional method of keeping our readers informed by giving them insight into how their elected officials view different issues. It is our hope that it will also increase public interest and involvement in the political process.
there is not a single person on the Board or working for city government that wants to undertake a study just for the sake of doing a study. APD, Knapheide, Trimax Mowing, Marino Ware, Welch Equipment, the new Kirby Manufacturing and more…. Hundreds of jobs have been created in our industrial parks to date and now the latest, The Lakes of Green Valley, is open and beginning to attract prospects. Are we satisfied? No. Have we been in a major national recession? Yes. We are making progress.


If you have a question you'd like asked of Griffin/Spalding officials, please e-mail with the subject line, "public forum."
Q: Griffin/Spalding County residents have for years expressed displeasure that progress has not come to Griffin. How do you respond to readers who are asking why officials approve numerous studies and formulate plans, and yet results do not seem to come to fruition?
City of Griffin District 3 Studies and plans come with d i f fe r e n t outcomes depending on their purpose and the resources tied to them. To generalize studies and say they do not come to fruition would not be entirely accurate. I think we can break it down into three types of outcomes. First, we have studies related to infrastructure projects. For example, block grant studies improve water and sewer infrastructure. These studies are not as visible, but they are completed, we receive grant funding, and the project is finished in a relatively short timeframe. Second, we have planning that requires turnover in property or redevelopment to see the results. This planning involves zoning and design standards that are put in place, but to see the results, redevelopment must occur to replace grandfathered properties. In other words, it’s slow. Third, we have studies with big ticket items. These studies are the most visible because they are community wish lists. Some of the items will be accomplished through mechanisms like SPLOST, but many will be pushed well into the future because of cost and that is understandably frustrating. Studies are tedious. I’ve never understood why they take as long as they do to complete. Despite that, I am also fairly certain that

City of Griffin District 5 The question’s basic premise is false, i.e. nonsense. Progress has been constant throughout our city and county these past few years. Consider: UGA has been enhanced from Experiment Station only status to a teaching campus. A new $10 million student learning center was added. Now a $5 million Food Product Innovation Center has been funded and soon will be under construction. SCTC has a growing student enrollment, a new Medical Training building with another new SPLSOT financed building coming. Spalding County built Wyomia Tyus Park and the Dundee Lake Park. A beautiful new Senior Center has just opened. Highway 16 was four-laned from I-75 to Griffin. The GS School System built a new high school, three new middle schools and several new elementary schools. The city consolidated services into the newly renovated efficient One Griffin Center building, built a new 16th Street bridge, renovated the entire electrical distribution system, built a new reservoir, modernized entire computer system, and is now implementing a highly cost efficient automated utility meter reading system. The GS Industrial Authority has recruited these industries: Caterpillar, Bandag, ExoPack, International Paper, Sumika Polymer, Armal, Schilli Distribution, HK Logistics, Ranews


Director, City of Griffin Planning and Development The City of Griffin is committed to efforts to spur economic development, and give citizens an improved quality of life. There are several factors that assist with bringing additional industries and retail developments to our city; nonetheless, the elected officials are taking a proactive approach in accomplishing these goals. The City has conducted many plans and studies over the past; yet, several of the plans take time to come to fruition. Though, citizens may not see immediate results, these items are necessary for additional funding opportunities from state and federal agencies. Companies and corporations want to see investment by the local governments for improvements. Then, and only then, will they make an effort to invest within that area. It displays dedication, vested interest, and goal orientation to produce to improve its current state. We have exemplified our commitment by going after funding to assist with redevelopment, such as the Community Block Development Grants, which help offset costs, normally funded solely by the taxpayers, which are associated with improvements of low-tomoderate income areas. The City has been awarded water and sewer infrastruc-

Recognize the happy couple in this photo?

Doubtful, since it wasn’t taken locally. But we bet you do have your own family snapshot or other photo with a Coca Cola sign in the background (like this one) or a Coke in your hand. If so, contact us and we may include it in an upcoming exhibit at the Coke Building featuring local scenes, or not, with that familiar logo or product anywhere in them.

GRIFFIN COLA COMPANY | 770-229-9000 | contact@gri

APRIL 19 - MAY 2 , 2013



« forum, cont.
ture grants four out of six years totaling $2 million dollars: 2008, 2010, 2012, and 2013. Citizens within these areas see immediate improvement to their utilities. Items like the two Urban Redevelopment Plans are used as economic development tools that allow developers the confidence that Griffin understands and is committed to revitalizing these subareas. Several plans and studies from Livable Center Initiatives to recycling programs to the Substandard Housing Program have been completed to illustrate the City’s progressive approach. Once the economy fully recovers, these areas will become more enticing for development due to incentive programs, tax credits and added long-term revenue generators that will help distinguish us from other cities in Georgia. This is not a given; nonetheless, the City is taking the appropriate actions until that time present itself. It is better to be prepared than let future opportunities pass us by. The setting of goals and specific guidelines are a must. Though the elected officials and city administrators have done a great deal to change the outside perception of the city; a lot is still needed. Outside agencies have teamed up with the City to make our efforts even stronger. Yet, citizens must also have the desire to make Griffin a better place to live, work and play. The City’s new tagline speaks volumes, “Grow Together”; but to do so, it will take the effort of an united Griffin! built and just announced a five million dollar Food Technology Center at UGA, a joint project funded by US (you and me) - the University and the State of Georgia. Spalding Regional Medical Center expanded - 12 million dollars alone invested in our community to improve Emergency Facilities. SPLOST dollars have brought better educational facilities, a new Industrial Park and a new Senior Center, Sun City and many more smaller projects. It is trite but it is true “Rome wasn’t built in a day”. Studies are a requirement - They are called being prepared for the future. compliment our existing public works and/or public utility projects and allow your local government to plan effectively and efficiently. Other studies such as the Airport, Marketing, Branding, Parking, and Livable Cities Initiatives for the Historic District and West Griffin are tools used by your local leaders in planning for the future. Most studies require a local match to offset cost paid by the state or federal agency. Again, funding for projects usually requires a local match (SPLOST and General Funds) and community support to enable the projects to be completed as funding is budgeted. Generally, these studies give stakeholders an opportunity to give their ideas and vision in shaping Griffin’s future development. As an elected official, it is my responsibility to support the kind of public investment that will make our community safe and wholesome and promotes private investment that creates jobs and strengthens our community’s tax-base. Together, we are planning and working to make Griffin and Spalding County a Community of Excellence! Ω

for making a di erence in the lives of others.



Lic. # 126-226-H

Griffin Mayor, District 4 Progress as defined by Webster is an ongoing action - so in its self it is something continually being sought. To indicate that Griffin and Spalding County is not progressing is a false assumption. There are 159 counties and hundreds of cities with elected officials and citizens who are everyday looking to pro-gress (meaning to go forward) their community. Progress in Griffin and Spalding County has happened! Look around - just in the last two years - Caterpillar expanded - H.K. Logistics located in our Industrial Park - the finest new Kroger store in the State of Georgia located here - UGA Griffin Education Building we program. Designed to instill a heightened sense of responsibility in renters, he said it will also assist landlords by giving them access to renters’ history, including eviction histories. In addition, Dull said Griffin is in great need of an organization for landlords. “It’s time for Griffin to have some sort of landlord’s association,” he said. “If substandard housing exists, it’s because the market allows it to exist.” Another issue addressed by the GHA is assistance recipient responsibility, executed for example, through its truancy program. “Responsibilities come with the receipt of subsidies,” he said. Dull also offered local officials with an overview of GHA’s clients, saying that contrary to what many people believe, it is not about free housing. “Only 27 people now get zero rent. Last year, that number was 39,” he said, attributing the improvement to increased job opportunities such as came about with the opening of the new Kroger. However, he said one key issue that remains to be resolved is the high number of local renters. “We’ve got to restore the home ownership balance in our neighborhoods and that’s only going to happen if we all work together.” Ω

3247 Newnan Rd. Griffin


City of Griffin At-large Local Governments are mandated by state and federal legislation to initiate and fund most of our long-term plans, including the Griffin-Spalding County Waste Water Management Plan of 20072030, the City of Griffin Water Master Plan of 20102050, City of Griffin Comprehensive Plan and City of Griffin Transportation Plan. Each study is developed to

410 E Taylor ST STE Q Gri n, GA 30223 Bus: (770) 229-7240

Tyler Carpenter Agency

« housing, cont.
Baby Boomer generation ages further. Changes now underway in Griffin-Spalding County including demolition and reconstruction of many public housing units will not only increase the quality of life for the GHA’s clients, but will assist officials as they seek grants and other funding options. According to Dull, in-fill affordable homeownership is crucial to economic growth. Family site and senior village style housing units will replace many of the traditional housing units now spread throughout the community. One barrier to redevelopment, he explained, is blighted housing, which has a negative impact on grant applications. To address this issue, more than 150 substandard houses have in recent months been demolished, and more are slated for this process in coming days. Dull said another key component to improving local housing conditions is to create a knowledgeable base of renters, which he intends to accomplish through the Ready to Rent program. He said he would like to see all residents relocating from Meriwether Homes, which should begin the demolition process in preparation for reconstruction later this year, participate in this

« E-Watch, cont.
hoods. Information can be passed on and police personnel can read and respond in addition to posting information concerning the neighborhoods,” he said. “It’s similar to some groups that are on Facebook, but some people are opposed to Facebook. This way, they can use e-mail. It’s not a bulletin board, but they can post and read emails. It’s kind of like an email blast, but the only people who will be able to read the correspondence are the designated officers from the Police Department and people that are subscribed to that group.” Officials have identified neighborhoods that currently have an established traditional neighborhood watch program for inclusion in the E-Watch, but new locations are encouraged to participate in the free program, as well. Jones said the current groups are listed on the city of Griffin Web site, but that new ones may be added at any time. “If there’s a group not listed in the drop down, they can request that it be added,” he said. “We’re trying to group them altogether instead of having a lot of different ones. There’s not a limit that it’s confined to so many streets or blocks, but we are trying to group them together.” Participants also will not tist Church, Co-Chairperson for the Charity Church Funds Committee. Redding's philosophy is “Kids are only going to do what you demand them to do. If you allow them to do a little, they will perform little; if you demand a lot, they will perform a lot!” Robert N. Dull, Jr., CEO of the Griffin Housing Authority, Lynn Futral, the Parks and Recreation Advisory Commission both nominat-

be required to attend traditional meetings with neighbors and a police officer. “It’s all done electronically in this instant information age we live in,” Jones said. “Some people have a preference for receiving their information electronically, rather than the traditional meet-and-greet scenario. We’re just trying to adapt our programs to meet the needs of our citizens.” Participants may opt-in at any time, and there a simple opt-out feature is also in place, he said. In addition, Jones stressed that residents personal e-mail addresses will be confidentially maintained, with no information sharing involved. “They will be maintained by the Griffin Police Department and they will not be shared for any marketing efforts. E-mails may be received from the city of Griffin, but no outside parties will have access,” he said. “We’re not sharing e-mail addresses with anyone.” Jones said the E-Watch program is available to all city residents. For those who live outside that area, he recommends Neighborhood Watch information be obtained by contacting their local sheriff’s office. The E-Watch program may be accessed at / Depar tments/PublicSafety/PoliceDepartment/ NeighborhoodWatch.aspx Ω ed Redding for the award. The Bain Proctor Award has been bestowed upon active community volunteers since 2004 during the month of April, which is recognized as National Volunteer Month. The award was named in honor of one of Griffin and Spalding County’s most well known and remembered volunteers, Bain Proctor. Ω

Griffin’s ONLY Jewelry Supercenter

a wide array of jewelry sentimental plaques Faerie Glen gurines Betty Boop items & more!


« volunteer, cont.
less of age. Ms. Redding serves as an example to those with disabilities that dedication to a cause which serves those in most need helps turn what would be a barrier into an opportunity," the proclamation continued. Redding is the Founder/ Operator of the CHARMS

program (Caring, Helpful, Active, Residents of Meriwether Homes), Spalding Collaborative Board Member since inception, Vice-Chair for the Housing Authority of the City of Griffin, Member of Community Center for Personal Enrichment, Parental Involvement/Parent Advisory Council Member at Anne Street Elementary, Active Member at the Greater Springhill Missionary Bap-

770-227-7715 Corner of 10th & Solomon Sts

1. Shop @ 11th

212 11th St., Griffin (770) 227-2349 Thurs & Fri 10am-6pm Sat 10am-5pm & Sun 12:30pm-4:30pm

7. Treasure Seekers
110 S. 5th St., Griffin, GA (770) 233-6777 Mon.–Fri. – 9:30am-5pm Sat. 10am-4pm

2. Nut-N-Fancy
431 W. Poplar St., Griffin (678) 603-1912 Mon-Sat 10am-5pm 135 S. Hill St. (678) 603-2115 Tues–Fri – 10:30am-6pm Sat 10:30am-4pm

8. Broad Street Mill 324 E. Broad Street, Griffin -Sweet Southern Salvage -The Chicken House -47th Ave. Antiques -BonJour Antiques
Suite 210; Wed-Sat 11am-5pm (770) 584-0116 Suite 211; Mon–Sat 9:30am-5:30pm (404) 775-5094 Suite 212; Wed– Sat 10am-5pm (404) 569-4760

3. Birds of a Feather -Weekend Treasures
125 S. Hill St., Griffin (770) 233-1559 Thurs – Fri 11am-6pm Sat 11am-5pm & Sun 1pm-5pm

Suite 216; Mon-Sat 10am-5pm (770) 330-1704

4. GiGi’s Antique Griffin 9. The Blue Goose
113 E. Taylor St., Griffin (770) 227-7708 Mon–Sat 10am-5:30pm Sun 1pm-4pm 430 E. Taylor St. Griffin Mon. –Sat 10am-5pm (404) 510-3862

6. The Maker’s Market @ ‘stache studio
116 S. 6th St., Griffin (770)229-6599 Tues – Fri -10am-6pm; Sat 10-5

10. Holly’s House

900 S. Pine Hill Rd., Griffin (678) 251-2151 Mon- Sat 9:30am–6pm; Sun 1-6pm

11. Red Barn Antiques
(678) 588-5305 104 Main St. Milner, GA Mon-Sat 10am-5pm