Headlines Cont. – 10/20/2006

Published 12:00 am Friday, October 20, 2006

The Panolian: INSIDE STORIES – October 20, 2006


NAACP banquet is Saturday
The Panola County Branch of the NAACP will hold its annual banquet, Saturday, October 21 at 7 p.m. at the Pleasant Green Activity Center, Hwy. 51 North, Sardis.

The guest speaker is Sardis native John Arthur House, assistant professor of speech and theatre at Rust College in Holly Springs. He is director of the Rust College Theatre Guild; founder and artistic director of the Rust College Summer Dinner Theatre and manager of Doxey Fine Arts Center.

House has directed over 80 productions and written 19 plays.

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He was the recipient of the 2005-2006 Exemplary Teacher Award sponsored by the United Methodist Church.

Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at the door or in advance by contacting Julius Harris at 662-487-1348.

Variance denied on fifth trip before board
By Jason C. Mattox

Batesville aldermen voted 3-1 to deny a variance request from Edith Cole to allow a mobile home on Patton Lane. It was her fifth trip before the board.

Ward 2 Alderman Rufus Manley was the only vote in favor of the variance.

Rosharwin Williams, a Clarksdale attorney, spoke on behalf of Cole and her family.

"This is a modular home, and it will be placed on a concrete slab," Williams explained.

Aldermen had continued the matter from their October 3 meeting to research the "modular home."

During that meeting, aldermen asked Cole to provide photographs of the home.

After examining the photos, aldermen determined the home in question should still be considered a mobile home.

"It has the roof line and appearance of a mobile home," Alderman Bobbie Jean Pounders said.

Manley voiced his support for Cole’s variance request by making the motion to allow it.

"We have spent hours discussing this, and I would like to see us allow it and move on," he said.

Pounders further clarified her reasons for rejecting the variance.

"That might be what’s considered a modular home, but it’s just not what I thought it would look like," she said. "It looks like a mobile home."

After Cole, her family members and attorney left the board room, assistant city attorney Colmon Mitchell said the board needs to adopt some procedures for public hearings.

Mitchell explained that the last public hearing to discuss Cole’s matter could have been handled better.

"Every time they talked about the date of the fire with [Code Enforcement Office administrator] Pam [Comer], the date changed," he said.

The fire Mitchell was referring to was mentioned several times during the five hearings Cole had with the aldermen. Cole had a trailer on her property on Patton Lane that burned and if a trailer had been placed there within a year following the fire, the process could have been avoided.

"The last public hearing to discuss this was probably the worst one I have ever seen," Mitchell said. "I don’t mean that as a reflection on the board, but I think you might need some kind of procedures to follow to avoid people speaking out of turn or from the audience."

Mitchell said by having the public hearings become more formal, it would let city leaders know who was addressing them.

"Everyone who wishes to speak will have to sign in and go up to the podium to speak, that way you know who is speaking to you," he said.

Manley said he believed the change would be a plus.

"We are really considered the supreme court of this town," he said. "It’s probably a good idea that we get a little more formal."

Mitchell echoed those sentiments saying, "We have really outgrown the small town ways, and this was a good wake-up call letting us know that."

After the discussion, aldermen voted to allow Mitchell to draw up a new procedure for public hearings.

Sweet ‘tater men
     Daniel Thomas and his son Robert Lewis Thomas (right) grew several sweet potatoes that weighed around 10 pounds a piece in their garden in Courtland. They said they grew the same big potatoes last year.
Antique tractors, engines to be showcased, appetites satisfied at this weekend’s event
By Billy Davis

Cases of catfish fillets and cooking oil started piling up Thursday morning at Bill Klyce’s hardware store in downtown Sardis, unofficially marking the kick-off tonight of the 17th annual Antique Engine and Tractor Show.

"I’ve got 14 cases of catfish and six cases of cooking oil," reported tractor show director Bill Klyce, now in his fourth year of overseeing the event.

The tractor show officially begins this afternoon with the sale of $7 fish plates beginning at 5 p.m. Batesville musician Joe Allen and his band will provide live music Friday and Saturday afternoon.

Other live music scheduled for Saturday includes the Fishers of Men Gospel Quartet from 10:30 to 11:30 and the Barbwire Band from noon until 2 p.m.

Saturday’s event schedule includes the traditional tractor events, a 10 a.m. parade and the always-popular tractor pull at 11 a.m., as well as several games – a prettiest rooster contest, a bubble gum blowing contest and a skillet throwing contest.

The rooster contest and bubble gum contest are open to children only. The skillet throw is a ladies-only event.

"The ladies can leave their skillets at home because we’ve got one for them to throw," said J.C. Sexton, who is overseeing the contests and constructed a durable nine-inch skillet just for the skillet contest.

The various contests are new to the tractor show and come courtesy of Sexton and his trips to other tractor shows across the country.

"What I hope is the contests just bring out more people to the tractor show, even if it’s a small crowd of participants this first year," said Sexton, who is serious enough that he’s bringing in an outsider from Tylertown, MS to judge the rooster contest.

The schedule for the games is:

  • 9:00 AM – Skillet Throw
  • 9:30 AM – Bubble Gum Contest
  • 11:00 AM – Prettiest Rooster

Tractor show attendees can also browse flea market booths and arts and crafts booths.

In Sardis, the weather outlook for Saturday is good: sunny with a high of 72 and a 10 percent change of rain, according to .
Admission to the tractor show is $1.


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