Nov. 20, 2015
             Tifton, Georgia

         (478) 227-7126


Tifton is known as "The Reading Capital of the World," "The Turfgrass Capital of the World," and "The Friendly City," among other things. Now, it's becoming known as the home of what is said to be "the only hardened and privately owned underground bunker of its kind in the United States," capable of withstanding a nuclear blast.

Actually, the property is near the  Tift County-Irwin County line, and it's for sale for $17.5 million.

Dubbed "The Facility," the luxury bunker property was built in 1969 and fully renovated to government standards in 2012 It features  its own commercial 3-Phase power plant, in addition to its own 8Kw new solar backup system. The facility is also equipped with a $100,000 CCTV security system.
"Above ground, The Facility offers 2,000 square feet of commercial space, a renovated 1,000-square-foot caretaker's home, and below ground the facility offers 14,000-square-feet of living and working space," says the real estate company handling the listing, Harry Norman Realtors of Atlanta"The Facility is 45 feet underground and certified to withstand a 20,000-ton nuclear blast."

The Facility is on 32 acres and has two levels of underground living space, the company states in a press release.
Level two has four luxury apartments that are about 600-square-feet. The apartments are totally self-contained and
"The Facility's" commercial-grade kitchen
have two full bedrooms, a kitchen and dining area, a living room with TV and internet, and a large bathroom in addition to its own security, a HVAC system and environmental monitoring sensors.

Level one of the underground facility has common areas similar to a luxury hotel, the company said.

"Guests can enjoy the large home theater with seating for 15, a commercial-grade kitchen, a recreation area, library and TV room," Harry Norman reported. "The Facility is equipped with a full workshop, a separate business and conference center and fully equipped medical room."

The property has three-foot-thick walls, hardened concrete, decontamination showers, five staff bedrooms in addition to the luxury apartments, 12 full baths, a four-car garage and a 100-yard outdoor firearms range. It can house approximately 20 people.

And just where is it located? It's address is the aptly named 123 Private Drive, Tifton, GA 31793.

For a virtual tour, Click Here!

Among the Excellence in Teaching Award winners is Tracy Ingram, center, of Len Lastinger Primary School.
Janet McNair
Tammy Hornbuckle
Becky Harper
Delois Rhaney
A dozen Tift County public school teachers were tapped this week as recipients ofthe 2015 Excellence in Teaching Award by the nonprofit Tift County Foundation for Educational Excellence.

Foundation representatives, school officials, county education administrators and recipients' family members surprised the teachers with the honor at their schools. Students in the classrooms joined in to congratulate their teachers, among the many smiles, tears and hugs.

 The recipients are: 

Delois Rhaney, Tift County Pre-K Center; Becky Harper, G.O. Bailey Primary School second grade; Tracy Ingram, kindergarten; Treci Morrow; kindergarten; Wendy Sparks, third grade; and Emily Head, math coach; all at Len  Lastinger Primary School; 

Mandy Stone, Charles Spencer Elementary fifth grade Janet McNair, math coach; and Ellen Norman, special education, at Matt Wilson Elementary; Tammy Hornbuckle, Omega Elementary, math coach; Beth Hobby, Eighth Street Middle School seventh grade life sciences; and Sheri Wyles, Tift  County High Northeast Campus, band and chorus.

The teachers are nominated by a student, parent, a peer or administrator. 

In February, the Rotary Club of Tifton will honor the recipients with an awards banquet, and the Foundation for Educational Excellence with present the teachers with an honorarium.  

This is the 25th year that the foundation has been recognizing teachers of excellence in Tift County public schools.
Ellen Norman, above, and Emily Head, at right

Beth Hobby
Mandy Stone

Sheri Wyles
Wendy Sparks

At right: Treci Morrow with her family and Mike Brumby, executive director of the Tift County Foundation for Educational Excellence.
Brumby & White
    'Choose & Cut'        Since 1980
        Christmas Tree Farm 
We Have 3,750 Trees ... Find Your Perfect Christmas Tree! 

Leyland Cypress     Virginia Pine    Fraser Fir   Blue Cedar
Carolina Sapphire     Red Cedar    Blue Ice     Naylors Blue
Trees Range from 4 to 18 feet  ~  Starting at $25 

Spike Stands (holds trees straight). 
All trees drilled for spike stands and water intake.
Cut your own or we cut it for you.

     All trees blown out & shaken; all trees baled; 
all trees loaded/secured for you in your car or truck at no charge.

OPENING DATE: This Sunday, Nov. 22 at 1 p.m.
Monday-Friday:  Noon - 5:30 p.m. (or Dark)
Saturday: 10 a.m. - Dark
Sunday: 1 p.m. - Dark 
We're Open Thanksgiving Day ~ 1:30 p.m. - Dark
229 382-7515 or 229 382-3072
808 Chula-Brookfield Road
(1/2 mile east of Highway 125/Tift Ave or 3.5 miles east I-75 Exit 69)


Larry Dean, a former Tift County High Blue Devil and a current member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the National Football league, is being honored with  a roadside sign.

Mayor-elect Julie Smith unveiled the sign during Thursday night's Tifton City Council workshop.

Dean was cited for consistently giving back to the Tifton community since joining the NFL. His activities include programs helping to feed the needy, sponsoring the Stop the Violence basketball tournament, holding back-to-school rallies, providing the largest site for the summer feeding program, sponsoring lupus awareness events, and aiding Tift County High School athletics.


Tift Regional Health System (TRHS) saluted colleagues at its annual awards banquet held on N ov. 17 at the University of Georgia Tifton Campus Conference Center.  
TRHS presented the John B. Prince III  Distinguished Service Award to Dr. Cameron Nixon , internal medicine physician with Affinity  Clinic , who serves as medical director of Tift Regional Physician Group .

TRHS President/CEO William T. Richardson, from left, Tressie Mathis, R.N. (Jensen Patrick Nursing Award); Dr. Cameron Nixon (Prince Distinguished Service Award); Dr. Rodney Tyson (Exceptional Physician Award); Tina Rowan, R.N. (Cook Medical Center Employee of the Year); Kimberly Moorman  (TRMC Dixon Dorminy Employee of the Year); and Tift County Hospital Authority Chairman Jimmy Allen.

Dr. Nixon is also co-medical director of the hospital system's patient centered medical home program and serves on various medical leadership committees. The award is named after former Tift County Hospital Authority chairman John Prince, who served on the board for more than 40 years. Prince attended the banquet and presented the award to Dr. Nixon. 
The Tift Regional Medical Center (TRMC) Foundation honored Dr. Rodney Tyson with the Exceptional Physician AwardDr. Tyson, who practices with Affinity Hospital Medicine, provides inpatient care at Tift Regional Medical Center.

The TRMC Foundation also recognized Tressie Mathis, R.N. with the Jensen Patrick Nursing Award. Mathis is a registered nurse with the TRMC Palliative Care and Pain Management Department. The late Ray Jensen, a local agricultural businessman, established the Jensen Patrick Nursing Excellence Award through the TRMC Foundation to recognize a TRMC bedside nurse who demonstrates unusual concern for the welfare and happiness of patients.
The hospital system recognized employees of the month for the past year at TRMC and Cook Medical Center. TRHS named Kimberly Moorman, Lead Financial Analyst with the System Application Management Department, the Dixon Dorminy Employee of the Year. Dr. John Dorminy and the late Dr. Sammie Dixon have provided an endowment through the TRMC Foundation to recognize employees of the month and employee of the year at TRMC. Tina Rowan, R.N. was named Cook Medical Center's Employee of the Year. Rowan is a registered nurse with the Adel hospital's Medical/Surgical Unit.
TRHS also saluted employees with five, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30 and 35 years of service. Teekeela Saunders with the TRMC Radiology Department reached the distinction of 40 years of service.  

The banquet ceremony included tributes by TRHS President/CEO William T. Richardson, department managers, senior executive leaders and board trustee Joyce Mims. The Rev. Craig Nalls, TRMC chaplain, opened the program with a musical presentation and invocation. Kasandra Pridgon with the TRMC Anita Stewart Oncology Center concluded the program with a musical presentation with special guest and patient Margaret Giddens.



The Georgia Museum of Agriculture and Historic Village at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College will again offer the popular Victorian Village by Candlelight and North Pole Express events this holiday season. The Victorian Village will be held on Dec. 6, and the North Pole Express will be Dec. 16-18.

All tickets must be purchased in advance and will not be available on the day of the event.

The Victorian Village by Candlelight is from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Dec. 6. Only 125 visitor slots are available for the tours. Groups will meet at the Country Store to leave on the train every 30 minutes beginning at 5:30 p.m., with the last group leaving the train station at 7:30 p.m.

Guests will learn about two of the Victorian traditions that have become a part of the legend of Santa Claus during the lantern-lit event. Visitors get a taste of the community's celebratory spirit as they stop in for a Christmas Eve visit in a Victorian-era village in South Georgia back when electricity was a luxury, humble gifts were made by hand, and Christmas Eve was spent cooking treats on the open hearth.
The first stop on the hour-long village tour will be the Clyatt Cabin, where Father Christmas and Old Befana will greet guests with a folktale. Guests will follow the lit path to see how two Wiregrass Georgia families celebrate the holiday season. The Tift House will depict the Christmas of an affluent family. Carolers will be on the porch singing traditional 19th century carols. At the Knight Cabin, guests will see what a typical Christmas might have been like for a sharecropper and his family. A stop at the Drug Store follows, where farmhouse beef stew and cornbread will be available for visitors before they head to the bonfire for hot apple cider.

The North Pole Express will be 5-8 p.m.  Dec. 16-18. The museum's 1917 Vulcan steam locomotive will depart for the North Pole every 20 minutes. Guests will be able to listen to Mrs. Claus read the holiday classic, "The Polar Express," in the Clyatt Cabin before boarding the North Pole Express to visit with Santa and enjoy the movie version of "The Polar Express" in a winter wonderland.

For ticket information, call 229-391-5205.


ABAC's Stafford School of Business is preparing for its annual Manna Drop community service event this Saturday to provide food for Thanksgiving for approximately 400 families in the Tiftarea.
Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College students, particularly those from the business school, will gather at Charles Spencer Elementary School beginning at 10 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 21, to distribute bags of food, including ham, green beans and cornbread. 

Families will come by the school and collect the bags for their Thanksgiving meal.
Money for the Manna Drop comes through fundraising efforts, such as the sales of boiled peanuts on campus, as well as donations from local businesses.
Kristoff Cohran of the Stafford School of Business says this is "Stafford's way of giving back." 

She recently told ABAC's student newspaper The Stallion:  "The Manna Drop is about safety, security and smiles. Everyone there is having fun. It's in a safe environment, and it teaches students about the importance of giving back."


The 11th annual Kiwanis Run for the Kids 5K/1 mile run begins at 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5, as part of Tifton's Hometown Holiday Christmas Celebration.

Tom Shoup, event co-chair, said the event is to "raise money for our local children's programs, to promote physical fitness in the community and to highlight our town's historic district." 

More than $40,000 has been raised for local youth in the past decade, said Marvin West, club treasurer.
Richard Golden, race co-chair, said the event will be organized by the Tiftarea Academy and Tift County High Key Clubs, the ABAC Circle K Club and the Kiwanis Club of Tifton. Businesses have been invited to sponsor and show their support for more than 30 beneficiaries of the event, including:  Special Olympics, 4-H, Boy and Girl Scouts, the Kiwanis Art and Music Showcase for local students, scholarships for TCHS, TA and SRTC students, the annual Kiwanis Fishing Rodeo for kids, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Tift County Recreation Department teams, Patticake House, FFA, American Legion Girls and Boys, the local high school Key Clubs and ABAC Circle K.  
The race starts and ends near the corner of 8th and Forrest streets across the railroad tracks from the visitor's side of Brodie Field at Eighth Street Middle School. Registration is $20 for adults and $10 for children if entries are received before Nov. 25. Late registration and on the day of the event is $25 for adults and $15 for children. 
New this year is a team competition (three-participant minimum) and registration is $5 off before Nov. 25. There will be team prizes to the fastest team and best Christmas costume or theme. Teams must submit race registrations forms together.    
More information can be found at the club's Facebook site, at, or call Shoup,  229-388-2142 email:  or Golden,  229-445-1531

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It's that time of year again!

The Annual Cookie Walk at Peace Lutheran Church in Tifton will be from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 21, in the fellowship hall at 604 Tennessee Drive.

You may mix and match homemade Christmas cookies at $6 a pound; also on sale will be homemade cakes, candles, breads and German pastries. Handmade Christmas items and gifts will also be available for purchase.

Proceeds from the sale are used to provide phone cards for members of the armed forces.
THE GEORGIA FIREBIRDS  has become an arena football team playing its home games in the Albany Civic Center. On Tuesday, Albany City Commission approved the plan. The Firebirds are in the American
Indoor Football (AIF) league, the largest league in the country with approximately 20 teams. The team will play five home games in Albany and five away games. The Georgia Firebirds, originally established in 2009, was a  semi-pro outdoor football team that had been based in Tifton , playing its home games at Brodie Field . ... THE RED-HEADED STRANGER -- one of country's original outlaws --
Willie Nelson, is coming to
Tifton, it was confirmed last week. Willie will perform on  Monday, Feb. 8 , at the UGA Tifton Campus Conference Center.


For the eighth consecutive year, Sycamore's Festival of Christmas Trees opens next weekend as a way to give back to local communities.

The admission is non-perishable food and unwrapped toys for the needy. Cash donations are also accepted; contributions help give a Christmas celebration to needy families.

More than 150 decorated Christmas trees will be on display, including a visit with Santa, hot chocolate and marshmallows to roast at the fire.

The Festival of Trees will be open Friday and Saturday nights from 6-9 p.m., starting Thanksgiving weekend through Christmas. Special tours can be arranged for groups of six or more at other times.

The location is
400 Ga. Highway 32 E., just off exit 78 in Sycamore. Call 770-601-8374 for information.

Charleston Carter of Tifton has been crowned the Toastmasters District 14 winner of the Speech Evaluation Competition for the state of Georgia.
Charleston Carter with Toastmasters International District 14 Gov. Renee Atkins

Carter is the court administrator for the Superior Court judges in the Tifton Judicial Circuit.  

"The investment of my time with Toastmasters International has proven to be rewarding indeed. Suffice it to say that  the enhancement of my leadership skills and my communication skills as I serve with the judges of the Tifton Judicial Circuit can definitely be attributed to my membership in Toastmasters International," Carter said.

From Oct. 30-Nov. 1, Toastmasters District 14 held its annual Speech Evaluation Contest and its Humorous Speech Contests in Peachtree City. Before this competition, participants had to defeat individuals from their home club, area and division in order to advance to the district level. Held as two separate competitions, the contest began with a test speech entitled "Does It Really Matter?" Eight verbal evaluations were conducted after presentation of the speech for each district in Georgia.

As each evaluator was evaluating the speaker, anonymous contest judges had been assigned to "evaluate the evaluator" for the Speech Evaluation competition. The Evaluation Contest was judged by seven anonymous members, who were allocated only one minute after each evaluation to cast their ballots. Once the nail-biting and intense competition votes had been counted, Carter was named the District 14 winner.

Toastmasters International is a nonprofit educational organization that operates clubs worldwide for the purpose of helping members to sharpen and improve their communication, public speaking and leadership skills.  Competitions are one method that Toastmasters International utilizes to build and improve speaking skills among its members.

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             a Glance 

  • Glow Run 5k & 1 Mile, 6 p.m., Northside Baptist Church, Tifton
  • Community Yard Sale, 7 a.m.-Noon, New River Baptist Church, Tifton
  • Family Fun Wellness Fair, 9 a.m.-Noon, Tiftarea YMCA, Tifton
  • Annual Cookie Walk, 9 a.m.-1 p.m., Peace Lutheran Church, Tifton
  • ABAC's Manna Drop, 10 a.m., Charles Spencer Elementary School, Tifton
  • Real Men Fight for Their Women: Domestic Violence Awareness, 1 p.m., Turkey Creek Country Club, Fitzgerald
  • "Days Gone By: The Folk Art of Glenn Simmions" exhibit/opening r eception, 2 p.m., Georgia Museum of Agriculture gallery, Tifton
  • Wiregrass Farmers Holiday Market, 3-7 p.m., Georgia Museum of Agriculture peanut museum, Tifton
  • Native American Experience & Cane Grinding, 4-9 p.m., Georgia Museum of Agriculture, Tifton

In Memoriam
NOV. 12
Sarah H. Browning Doss, 88, Tifton
Billie Medley, 79, Adel

NOV. 14
Marie McConnell, 98, Nashville

NOV. 15
Teri Suzanne Whiddon, 35, Ashburn

NOV. 16
Roy Young, 73, Enigma
Margaret Helen Mize Anderson, 84, Tifton
Virginia Dampier, 89, Adel

NOV. 17
Allen E. "Buzz" Pope, 70, Moultrie

NOV. 18
The Rev. Edward Cecil Felts Sr., 79, Tifton
Leila Ruth Giddens Fender, 95, Brunswick
Julie Neal, 68, Adel

NOV. 19
Bennie R. Evans Sr., 75, Sylvester
Mary Evelyn Spearman, 86, Sparks
Linda Fletcher, 68, Fitzgerald
Jimmie Ruth Scoggins Metcalf, 88, Sycamore

  4277 Forest Lake Drive, Tifton, GA
MLS #: R125406A

Stately traditional home with 10-foot ceilings in kitchen and den. Tray ceilings in dining room and master bedroom. Kitchen with pantry and desk. Crown molding, hardwood floors, master bath has shaving sink for men with separate vanity; low-maintenance brick home. Large master bedroom with walk-in closet, side room for nursery or office, Levolor blinds throughout entire home, separate large laundry room/mud room with toilet and laundry sink, large upstairs master bedroom with bath -- and more! Large bay window with view of golf course and yard irrigation system.  Seller is licensed Georgia Real Estate Agent.
    Dwana Coleman
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 Frank Sayles Jr. 
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