NOV. 29, 2016
Tifton, Georgia



Today is #GivingTuesday, a day set aside to kick off the charitable season following the shopping rush of Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday.

Entering its fifth year, #GivingTuesday is a global day of giving observed on the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving -- a day to "pay it forward."

It's a simple idea. Just find a way for you, your family, your company or your organization to come together and give to the charity of your choice. Then use the #GivingTuesday hashtag to tell everyone about how you are giving and to promote
Paul & Julia Kersey
others to do so.

Literacy Volunteers of Tifton-Tift County is once again participating in #GivingTuesday through the  website. Last year, Literacy Volunteers received $500 in in-kind website design services and other prizes and donations by participating. 

Anyone may view the local literacy campaign, including a touching story by one of its newest volunteers, Julia Kersey, about how the Tift Literacy Volunteers has helped her husband Paul and why she now volunteers for the Tift County organization. 

Literacy Volunteers of Tifton-Tift County is a 501(c)3 nonprofit agency that provides basic beginning level to college-level tutoring to individuals 16 years and older. All of its services are free to those who need them.

Its mission is to improve the lives of participants by enhancing their educational and occupational abilities through increasing their skills in reading, writing, math and language, and thereby to improve the standards of living in the Tiftarea community.

Besides tutoring sessions and GED classes, the Tift group also provides classes for  English as a second language; t utor training for volunteers; o ne-on-one tutoring; and  collects and donates books to worthy causes; and sponsors  local events that promote literacy and education.

For information on Literacy Volunteers of Tifton and Tift County, call Executive Director Bonnie Sayles at 229-391-2527.


The Governor's Office of Highway Safety (GOHS) has announced a $6,544 grant to Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College for participation in the GOHS Georgia Young Adult Program.

The GOHS addresses young adult driver crashes, injuries and fatalities and partners with colleges and universities throughout the state to implement the Georgia Young Adult Program (GYAP).

The program has proven to be successful using strategies such as peer education, providing educational speakers to schools and encouraging schools to develop creative, innovative techniques to reduce young adult crashes, injuries and fatalities in their communities.

Tragically, two young people -- a Georgia Tech student and a Tift County High School student -- died during the past week in a wreck near the ABAC campus.

"The Governor's Office of Highway Safety is committed to changing the tragic trend of young adult driver deaths in Georgia," said GOHS Director Harris Blackwood. "We're here to make changes, and I believe the students at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College can help us achieve the goal of lowering driver, crash, injury and fatality rates statewide. 

"Who better to address the challenges and dangers facing young adults than their peers? I'm confident these students can convince their peers to be safer, more conscientious drivers."

The GYAP program at ABAC sponsors events such as impaired driving prevention programs including DUI simulators and professional speakers. Programming often surrounds events such as National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week, Safe Spring Break, graduation and summer orientation.

The grant runs through Sept. 30, 2017.


Get into the spirit of the holidays with the annual holiday concert at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 29, in the Chapel of All Faiths at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College. The concert is a part of the First Tuesday Concert Series.

Dr. Susan Roe, head of the ABAC fine arts department, said the holiday concert has been held annually for 15 years and is open to the public at no charge.
The concert will feature the ABAC Jazz Singers under the direction of Roe, the Instrumental Ensemble under the direction of Johnny Folsom and accompaniment by Lagrimas .  

ABAC Arts Connection Director Wayne Jones will perform "Sweet Little Jesus Boy," followed by an audience sing-a-long that includes "The First Noel," "Hark the Herald Angels Sing," "O Come All Ye Faithful," and "Silent Night."  
Roe will perform "O Holy Night" and "An Angel Breathing Out" before the ABAC Jazz Singers and the ABAC Instrumental Ensemble join past and present ABAC music students in the performance of "Everywhere Christmas Tonight." 


The Tiftarea YMCA is looking for sponsors for its 2016 Y Christmas on Saturday, Dec. 10, at the Tift Regional Medical Center Community Event Center
next to the YMCA.

The Y needs sponsors for 125 children between the ages of infant to 14. The  organization goes through the proper paperwork and works with other organizations to identify the needy children .
"This is always a  blessing for the Tiftarea YMCA staff and myself for the contributions made during the holiday season in putting a smile on each of the children's faces ," said Darian Peavy , YMCA executive director.
If you are interested in sponsoring a child, contact or call 229-391-9622.

The YMCA is also seeking volunteers to help with the event.

Dec. 3, Downtown Tifton
Parade ~ 5 p.m.

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Christmas Open House
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Members of Tiftarea Academy's Key & Excel clubs spent Monday packing and inspecting shoe boxes collected during National Collection Week for Operation Christmas Child

The students traveled to Atlanta to volunteer onsite at a Samaritan's Purse processing center. The boxes will be shipped worldwide to needy children to make their Christmases special and spread the word of the Gospel.

To accelerate the use of electric vehicles and the charging infrastructure needed to support them, the U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Highway Administration has established a national network of alternative fueling and electric vehicle charging corridors on 48 Interstate Highways covering nearly 25,000 miles in 35 states, including I-85 and I-75 in Georgia.

The Alternative Fuel Corridor designation involves two categories. Signage-ready corridors currently have sufficient alternative fuel facilities to warrant signage; while signage-pending corridors do not meet the conditions for signage and require electric vehicle charging stations to become signage-ready.

Interstate 75, which runs 355 miles through Georgia from Tennessee to Florida, is designated signage-ready for electric vehicles (EV) from the Tennessee border to Warner Robbins and from Tifton to Valdosta; and for compressed natural gas  vehicles along the entire corridor. 

It is also designated signage-pending for EV from Warner Robbins to Tifton and from Valdosta to the Florida border.

"Transportation and vehicle technology is rapidly changing and meeting those changes requires new approaches," said Georgia DOT Commissioner Russell R. McMurry

"Georgia DOT recognizes the importance of existing charging infrastructure and we encourage additional private investment to promote greater mobility options for alternative fuel vehicles."


The deadline is Dec. 15 for the Alumni Awards and Athletics Hall of Fame nominations at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College. The awards will be presented during the Homecoming awards dinner on April 7.

The Alumni Awards nominations should provide specific details about the nominee. Nominations can be from anyone. Nominees must have attended ABAC; graduating from the college is not mandatory for the nomination.

More than one candidate maybe nominated.  Awards are based on professional achievement, community service and service to the college. 

Visit the ABAC website and  Click Here!  to complete the nomination form.   

For the Athletics Hall of Fame, ABAC Athletics Director Alan Kramer said any individual, living or deceased, may be considered. Individuals are nominated in one of three categories: Athlete, Coach, or Contributor.

Kramer said athletic achievement as well as integrity, sportsmanship and character will be considered. He said the college is also looking for individuals who may have been good athletes while at ABAC and went on to coach high school or college teams to state or national titles.

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A fresh Christmas tree helps fill the house with the spirit of the holidays.  Bringing an evergreen inside and decorating it during winter is a tradition that dates back 500 years.

You might have to vacuum up some needles, but the look, fragrance and tradition of a live tree cannot be matched by artificial substitutes. Getting the most out of your investment in a fresh tree is easy with a few tips from University of Georgia Cooperative Extension.


Measure the ceiling height of the room where the Christmas tree will be displayed. Nothing's worse than having to whack a few inches off a gorgeous tree just to get it into the house.

The tree should be at least a foot shorter than the ceiling height to account for the stand and the tree topper.

It's hard to tell exactly how long pre-cut trees have been cut and how long they'll last after purchase. To do a freshness test, hold a branch about 6 inches from the top of the tree. Allow the branch to slip through your fingers. If the tree is fresh, very few green needles should come off.  

Another test involves lifting the standing tree a couple of inches off the ground, then abruptly setting it down on its stump. The outside green needles should not fall off. Remember, inside needles turn brown and shed naturally.

Some trees retain more needles differently. A Leyland cypress, for example, does not lose as many needles as a fir or spruce.


When you get home with your tree, check the cut on the end of the stump. Trees have the ability to seal off a cut with sap to prevent losing moisture. This would also prevent the tree from taking up water in a tree stand. 

Make a fresh cut about a quarter-inch up from the original cut. Place the tree in the tree stand. If the tree won't be decorated for a few days, leave it outside in a bucket of water in a spot out of the sun and wind. 

Once the tree is inside, be careful not to place it near a fireplace, heater vent or other heat sources.
 Check the stand regularly and make sure the water level never falls below the base of the tree.  There is no need to add special products to the tree's water. Just give it a gallon of water the first 24 hours and another 2 pints to a gallon the next day. You can count on supplying the tree with another 2 pints to a gallon of water every day.

While a well-hydrated tree will be a safe tree, it's still important to turn off your tree lights before going to sleep or leaving the house. Use only Underwriters Laboratories (UL)-approved lights and nonflammable decorations.

When the holiday season ends, recycle your tree.  Do not burn it; burning could be potentially dangerous during this drought.



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