The last hurrah of the Greater Rutledge Sportsman’s Club

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By Alvin Richardson In 1971 Lake Oconee was just a gleam in the eye of the Georgia Power Company. There were, however rumors out there that the river was on its way to semi-extinction and that a big dead lake would take its place. The Greater Rutledge Sportsman’s Club, a loosely affiliated group of miscreants, scoundrels, reprobates and un-convicted felons (of which I was the junior member) took the news badly. This band of brothers fancied themselves outdoorsmen, and so, for old times sake, voted to take one last rafting …

A good, Old Time: Old Time Wrestling Federation’s family-friendly entertainment in Buckhead

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By Leila Dycus Intern When it comes to professional wrestling, most people only know the sport by what they see on television, but there is a professional wrestling association that hosts events right here in Morgan County. The combined experience between Tim Lowe, Billy Jack and “Vicious” Vic Roze, tied together with a few hometown roots, led to the idea to create the Old Time Wrestling Federation (OTWF) which has been calling Buckhead home for several years. “How we got started in Buckhead, was last March a year ago. There …

Lady Diamond Dogs break into pre-season

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By Nick Nunn Staff Writer On July 22 and 23, the Morgan County High School Lady Diamond Dogs participated in the Dan Davis Invitational, which was held at the University of North Georgia and Lumpkin County High School in Dahlonega.  During the two-day event, the Lady Dogs defeated Parkview, Eastside, Fannin County, and Lumpkin County, while losing only to Walnut Grove. Lady Dog Head Coach Doug Connelly described what role the invitational was able to play in the team’s preseason preparations. “One of my primary objectives for the tournament was …

I’m still here

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By Nick Nunn You may have noticed, but my byline has been venturing out beyond the comfortable confines of the “B” section during the past couple of weeks. In case you haven’t noticed, I am now the Citizen’s news writer as well. The reactions that I’ve received from people when they find out that I’m the new news writer basically boil down to two responses: (1) Are you still going to do sports? (2) Oh, you are the sports writer for the Citizen? My response to both question has been …

MCHS Hoop Dogs compete in summer programs

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By Nick Nunn Staff Writer Several members of the Morgan County High School Hoop Dogs had the opportunity this summer to compete in regional and national programs. CJ Turman, Tookie Brown, Jaylin Ingram, and D’verious Brown were all chosen to participate in programs sponsored by Nike and Adidas, where they could attract attention from college and NBA scouts. Turman participated in the Nike Global Challenge, which took place in Washington D.C. on July 17-21. Turman was one of the 40 American players to be chosen and was able to play …

Hey, Coach!: This week we meet Charlemagne Gibbons, head coach of the Morgan Co. High School boys basketball team

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By Nick Nunn Staff Writer Charlemagne Gibbons was born in Montgomery, Ala. on Sept. 23, 1977. After graduating from Robert E. Lee High School in Montgomery, Coach Gibbons attended Auburn University at Montgomery, where he played for the basketball team and eventually returned for a Master’s Degree in Health and Physical Education. On Dec. 17, 2008, Coach Gibbons was married to Tanya Jones Gibbons, and they have two daughters, Christa and Brea, who are 6 and 4, respectively. Coach Gibbons has taught health and physical education at the Morgan County …

On health, aging and “The Medicine Man”

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By Alvin Richardson There are some days when old age seems to be creeping up on me. On the other hand there are moments when it feels as if the speed at which I’m reaching advanced age is coming on like a runaway freight train. Throughout this steady progression I’ve discovered a few things. One is that there is nothing that can be done about it, another is that the accompanying symptoms gradually get worse over time, and lastly it seems that the number of pills I am required to …

Rec department brings it on home

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By Nick Nunn Although it passed by unnoticed by many of Morgan County’s citizens, the Morgan County Recreation Department (MCRD) worked hard this year to be able to host two events: the Georgia Recreation and Park Association (GRPA) Sixth District A/B/C Class swim meet, which was hosted at the Morgan County Aquatic Center on July 6, and the Class C Junior Girls Fastpitch Softball State Tournament, which was hosted at Heritage Park on July 10-13. Not only did it require a concerted effort on the part of the members of …

Fore a good cause: Tournament raises money for Bill Cochran, Jr. scholarship fund

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By Nick Nunn Staff Writer Last Friday, July 19, the Morgan County Touchdown Club held its annual golf tournament fundraiser, which was held at The Creek at Hard Labor Golf Course. Twenty-five, four-man teams came out to support the Touchdown Club at $75 per player. Additionally, there were 40 hole sponsors for the event. Danny Tillery, Jason Singleton, Jonathan White and Jason Powell made up the team that won first place in the Gross Division, with a score of 56. First place in the Net Division was won by the …

Fellowship: Four members of the MCHS football team discuss recent FCA camp

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    By Nick Nunn Staff Writer Tired and still sweating immediately after the end of Monday morning’s two-hour weight training and practice session, Garrett Bone, Trey Chapman, Sam Couch and Tevin Waller set aside a few minutes to relax in the coach’s office of the fieldhouse and discuss this year’s FCA camp, which took place at Georgia Southern University in Statesboro on July 15-17. After leaving that Monday morning for Statesboro, the athletes fell into the routine of the camp quickly, although the weather played havoc on the schedule, …

Cardwell breaks state record at meet

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  By Nick Nunn Staff Writer The Morgan County Marlins swim team competed in the 2013 Georgia Recreation and Park Association Class B/C state swim meet in Tifton last Friday and Saturday. The team posted 24 finishes in the top eight positions. One member of the Marlins, Mary Claire Cardwell, even set a state record in an event. “The team performed well,” began Marlins Coach Andy Dunston. “We had a few minor mistakes, but they served as excellent learning moments and I think the swimmers who were affected certainly remember …

Tie a yellow ribbon around the old oak tree

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By Alvin Richardson The year was 1971 and I was in the 11th grade. That meant, given the fact that there was no kindergarten back in those days, I had been going to school thirteen years and graduation was most likely less than a lustrum (five years) away if I could ever pass trigonometry. Ah the memories of those days are rich and plentiful. There are very few things I can recall from my high school years more poignant than gatherings under a huge oak tree on our campus. That …

No Diamond for old men

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By Nick Nunn I don’t often listen to the radio during my five-minute drive to work in the morning because my 1991 Buick Park Avenue only picks up a couple of stations, and, frankly, I’ve grown tired of listening to the same songs day after day for the same short window. On a personal note, it may partially be my fault that the antenna in the car is busted; when my cousins and I were younger, we would walk by the car and flip the antenna, no matter how many …

Nine year-old sinks hole in one

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By Nick Nunn Staff Writer On July 10, while attending a golf camp at Hard Labor Creek, 9-year-old Jackson Stone accomplished a feat that few amateur golfers accomplish during decades of play: Stone hit a hole in one. Jackson, who has been playing off and on since he was two, made his ace on the fourteenth hole at Hard Labor Creek, which is a par three, but the normal length of the hole had been shortened because of the golfers’ ages. David Stone, Jackson’s father, says that, although Jackson was …

Hey Coach! Milfred Franklin, Athletic Director

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By Nick Nunn Staff Writer Milfred Franklin was born in Madison on August 12, 1979. Coach Franklin played baseball and cross country at the Morgan County High School before majoring in Middle Grades education at Piedmont College. Coach Franklin has been teaching in Morgan County for seven years, and he is now a Physical Education and Health teacher at the Morgan County Middle School, where he is also the Athletic Director and coach for the MCMS football and boys basketball teams. In his free time, Coach Franklin enjoys cooking on …

The life skills learned in the rural South build character

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By Alvin Richardson Growing up in rural Georgia helped me acquire certain skills that have made me a much more productive citizen.  Many of those lessons I learned have also been helpful in honing my meager outdoor talents.  I should point out to begin with that if you grew up in a city you probably haven’t participated in most of these activities thus depriving you of a decent upbringing or at least making these superior character traits much harder to obtain. So let’s take a look at some of the …

Touchdown Club to host golf tourney in memory of Cochran, Jr.

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By Nick Nunn Staff Writer The Morgan County Touchdown Club will hold this year’s golf tournament fundraiser in memory of Bill Cochran, Jr., which will take place at The Creek at Hard Labor beginning at 1 p.m. on Friday, July 19. A portion of the funds raised at the event will be dedicated to the Bill Cochran, Jr. Scholarship Fund. The scholarship goes to the best all-around member of the Bulldogs, with qualifications including skill, leadership, attitude and participation. The remaining funds goes directly to the football program to help …

Lady Dogs begin preseason training

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By Nick Nunn Staff Writer The Morgan County High School Lady Dogs softball team is gearing up for preseason events before school starts in the next couple of weeks. Last Saturday, members of the Lady Dogs got together at Heritage Park to raise funds for the MCHS softball booster club. On July 22 and 23, the varsity and junior varsity Lady Dogs will be traveling to Dahlonega to take part in the Dan Davis Invitational, with games being held at the University of North Georgia and the Lumpkin County High …

Hey Coach! Dusty Sidwell, Defensive Coordinator

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By Nick Nunn Staff Writer James Dustin Sidwell was born on Feb. 8, 1986 in Athens, Ga., but attended Morgan County High School where he competed on the football and wrestling teams. Coach Sidwell was named an All-State linebacker during his senior year at MCHS, and he won two state championships in wrestling for his junior and senior years. After beginning college at Georgia Military College, Sidwell received his undergraduate degree in Special Education. Following his undergraduate work, Sidwell earned a Master’s Degree in Special Education from Grand Canyon College …

Touchdown Club to host golf tourney in memory of Cochran, Jr.

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By Nick Nunn Staff Writer The Morgan County Touchdown Club will hold this year’s golf tournament fundraiser in memory of Bill Cochran, Jr., which will take place at The Creek at Hard Labor beginning at 1 p.m. on Friday, July 19. A portion of the funds raised at the event will be dedicated to the Bill Cochran, Jr. Scholarship Fund. The scholarship goes to the best all-around member of the Bulldogs, with qualifications including skill, leadership, attitude, and participation. The remaining funds goes directly to the football program to help …