Grocery giveaway grows into food pantry

Staff Written Community, Featured, Front Page

By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  What began as a one-time grocery giveaway has evolved into a blossoming food ministry. The Morgan County Ministers Union is opening up a food pantry out of the old middle school on Pearl Street in Madison.  The Madison-Morgan Community Food Pantry will serve as a non-profit organization to ensure local families can put food on the table during these unprecedented times brought on by the coronavirus pandemic, which has wrought widespread financial hardship due to lay-offs and shutdowns.   The Morgan County Ministers Union, along with other local churches and …

Community welcomes Dillon Lewis home after catastrophic crash

Staff Written Community

By Trinity Martin Staff Writer After three years in rehabilitation centers and hospitals, 28-year-old Dillon Lewis is welcomed home. On July 9, 2017, Lewis was struck by a tractor-trailer on the US 441 bypass. He suffered severe internal injuries and has been recovering in hospitals and rehabilitation centers ever since. To celebrate his homecoming, as well as his 28th birthday, a parade was thrown at the Madison Methodist Church on Friday. “It was a wonderful night for all of us,” said Laurie Lewis, Dillon Lewis’s mother.  Cars lined up around …

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Youth injured in crash coming home

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By Trinity Martin Staff  Dillon Lewis, 27, is returning home after a three-year recovery from a horrific wreck he experienced when he was just 24-years-old. Lewis, who is from Madison, will finally be reunited with his family full-time. To celebrate, his family is hosting a “drive-by” parade in his honor on Friday, August 28 outside the Wesley Building of Madison First United Methodist Church in Madison from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. For the last three years, Lewis has navigated a difficult road, living in different rehabilitation centers, after suffering severe …

MCHS Engineering program gets creative

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By Trinity Martin Staff Morgan County High School’s engineering program continues to amaze the community with their skills and donations of service. Engineering teacher, Brian Johnson, has used his two years as an educator to teach students real world skills they will need in the engineering field. Some of these skills include, designing and operating equipment.  When MCHS had a need for metal signs in certain areas of the school, Johnson was quick to sign his class up to take on the project. The engineering lab at the high school …

Covid can’t keep us down

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By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  Education in the age of the coronavirus poses unique challenges for teachers and students to balance safety and health with continuing academic progress. But Morgan County is up to the task, say school officials.  Superintendent of Morgan Schools Dr. Virgil Cole is praising teachers and staff for going above and beyond to educate students in the midst of new safety protocols and additional work of adding virtual learning programs for students. Cole praised students for their positive attitudes and compliance with wearing masks and …

Kim Brown resigns as head of Cultural Center

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By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  Kim Brown, executive director of the Madison-Morgan Cultural Center (MMCC) for the last six years, has announced her resignation.  Brown submitted a letter of resignation to the MMCC Board on Aug. 10, writing that her last day as director would commence on Aug. 31.  “July 14, 2020 marked my six-year anniversary with the Center. In this time I and my responsibilities have grown. It is time for something new!” wrote Brown. “While here, I have worked with an accomplished exiting director, three board chairs …

Cultural Center opens its doors to public

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By Trinity Martin Staff  The Morgan-Madison Cultural Center is back in business after closing its doors for 143 days.  After considering safety guidelines surrounding COVID-19, the center decided to open back up for the community with precautions in place on Aug. 6.      “We followed the executive orders of the governor, and the local governances of the city and county,” said executive director Kim Brown. “People are wearing masks, sanitizing their hands, and we have a thermometer. We ask people to not enter if they’re feeling sick, and we …

“Dairy splash” held at library

Staff Written Community, Featured

By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  Morgan County school children gathered on the lawn of the Morgan County Library for a special Back to School event last Saturday.  The Morgan County Farm Bureau Young Farmers and Ranchers orchestrated the “Dairy Splash” event to demonstrate dairy farm practices including a live cow milking demonstration. Attending Children were given tickets to get free Ice Cream from Scoops, a local Madison ice cream store that volunteered for the event.  The event was designed to follow CDC guidelines in light of the ongoing Coronavirus …

Using art to find rhythm in unbalanced world

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By Trinity Martin Staff Writer With prior health conditions putting one of Madison’s most beloved art teachers at a higher risk for COVID-19, Tyrus J. Manning III chose to lock himself away from the world and dive into art projects.  “It gives me something to do,” Manning said. “It takes my mind off the craziness.”  After Morgan County High School closed and Manning was no longer needed in his art classroom, he went to spend three months with his parents in the mountains. There he created art, hosted virtual concerts from …

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Some students ready to return, others doubtful

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By Trinity Martin Staff Writer Morgan County High School’s plan to reopen Aug. 6 has caused quite a commotion among parents, school employees, and the community overall.  Even students have been quick to voice their opinions on the school’s plans and procedures.  While some believe the school has planned well to keep students safe, others believe that a better method is necessary, and some believe school should not open in person at all for the benefit of the community.  Senior Kaitlyn Sims said, “I believe going back to school is …

We are in this together

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By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor The Morgan County Ministers Union continues to give away groceries every Saturday to help families struggling amidst the coronavirus pandemic.  This week, the group and its volunteers changed locations to the old Morgan County Middle School on Pearl Street in Madison.  The group distributed about 150 boxes full of groceries to families in a drive-thru line outside of the old Middle School.  The group will give groceries away every Saturday morning from the old Middle School from 11 a.m. until noon. It’s first come, …

Fire destroys Bostwick house

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By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor  A house on Price Mill Road in Bostwick was engulfed in flames on the early morning of Monday, July 27. A neighbor called emergency services at 8 a.m. to report a fire had broken out at the residence located at 1565 Price Mill Road.  “The house was about 20 to 30 percent engulfed at the time of the call,” said Morgan Fire Chief Jeff Stone.  By time the first firefighters arrives from Bostwick eight minutes later, the house was about 60 percent engulfed in …

Virus stops annual Morgan County Children’s Camp

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By Trinity Martin Staff Writer After running for 60 years strong, the coronavirus pandemic has forced the beloved Morgan County Association Children’s Camp at Hard Labor Creek State Park’s Camp Daniel Morgan to shut down for the summer.  On April 17, pastors with the MCA met to discuss what effects COVID-19 would have on the association’s annual camp. After serious consideration, they decided to skip a summer in an effort to keep all who participate safe and healthy.  “Everyone is sad and disappointed,” Rodney Allgood, camp director, said. “But in the …

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Back to School rally cut

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By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  School is still slated to reopen on Thursday, Aug. 6, despite the Back to School Rally being cancelled last week due to concerns over the coronavirus.  Organizers of the annual Back to School Rally, which distributes free backpacks and schools supplies to families every year, was cancelled last minute by the Morgan County Family Connection. This year more than 500 packsacks were purchased to give out to school students.  “With the recent increase in COVID-19 cases in Morgan (and surrounding counties) over the past …

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Ministry food giveaway changing locations

Staff Written Community, News

By Tia Lynn Ivey Managing Editor  The weekly Grocery Giveaway, orchestrated by the Morgan County Ministers Union, is changing locations this week. On Saturday, Aug. 1, boxes of good will be handed out from the old Morgan County Middle School, located on Pearl Street in Madison, from 11 a.m. to noon.  More than $30,000 has been spent thus far on groceries for needy families struggling through the coronavirus pandemic. The Conrads Foundation donated a $10,000 matching grant, which the Ministers Union has surpassed with donations from the community.  “We exceeded …

MCHS practicing a medley of precaution during band camp

Staff Written Community, Featured

By Trinity Martin staff writer As students and teachers begin navigating through plans for the upcoming school year, Morgan County High School’s One Morgan band is taking action to create a new normal.  This past week, the One Morgan band gathered together to take part in this year’s social distancing band camp. Band directors, Duncan Lord and Jeffery Rowser, have created routines and procedures to ensure students remain safe at all times. “We have to be more cautious than ever before,” Rowser said.  Some of these new procedures include mandating …

Schools get set for 1st day back

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Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor  At least 16 percent of Morgan County students will learn completely virtually when school reopens this August. Morgan County, like other school districts across the state, are experimenting with how best to reopen schools in the wake of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The Morgan County Board of Education landed on a hybrid plan, offering both virtual and in-person learning for the upcoming school year. While students are given the option, teachers and staff cannot opt out of in-person instruction, according to school officials.  In recent …