Ledford’s Brian Connolly signs with UNC-Asheville.
See SPORTS, Page B1
Baptist Children’s Homes dedicated new Aging Ministry Building at Mills Home. See Page B8
119th Year - No. 84 50 Cents
Saturday, April 17, 2010 www.tvilletimes.com
United Furniture bringing 150 jobs to county
Itty Bitty Kiddie Festival offers information, entertainment BY ELIOT DUKE Staff Writer
BY ERIN WILTGEN Staff Writer LEXINGTON — Even Lexington Mayor John Walser didn’t know the extent of the good news until Friday morning. When writing out his speech for the press conference announcing the commitment of a manufacturing company to a plant in Lexington, Walser left a blank line for the company’s name. And when he found out it was United Furniture Industries NC, LLC, he just couldn’t believe it. “I can’t get this smile off my face,” he said. “This is the best thing that’s happened to us in a long time.” United Furniture Industries NC, LLC — a national manufacturer of upholstered affordable living room furniture such as sofas, chairs, recliners and sleepers — has pledged to create 150 jobs and invest more than $3.3 million in Lexington over the next three years. The company is a wholly-owned subsidiary of United Furniture Industries, Inc., headquartered in Okolona, Miss. Other than the new plant in Davidson County, the company has five other locations, three in Mississippi and two in North Carolina. The North Carolina sites are in Archdale and Glenola, in Randolph County, and together employ about 400 people. “We are glad to be in Davidson County,” said company President Larry George. “It has been a long road, a process. We are looking forward to being here to create some jobs. I hope that we can add to the community.” United Furniture will
See JOBS, Page A3
TIMES PHOTO/ELIOT DUKE
Thomasville City Schools Superintendent Keith Tobin serves some fruit to children at Thomasville Primary School Friday. Below, TPS children work in the school garden area.
Food for Thought
WANT TO GO? WHAT: Itty Bitty Kiddie Festival
Thomasville Primary awarded for child nutrition BY ELIOT DUKE Staff Writer Staff and students at Thomasville Primary School enjoyed a moment in the spotlight Friday afternoon as local, state and federal dignitaries visited the campus to recognize a special achievement that culminates years of hard work and dedication to nutrition. During a special ceremony in the cafeteria, TPS was formally recognized as a 2010 USDA Healthier School Gold Award
winner for its outstanding nutrition environment and dedication to fighting childhood obesity. TPS is one of 654 schools across the United States and one of five in the state to receive such recognition. “I’m pleased to recognize TPS for achieving Gold-level status,” Jane Mandell, branch chief of the child nutrition division with the USDA, said. “The Healthier U.S. School Gold Award is one of the highest honors a school nutrition program can achieve and reflects a strong commitment to
provide students with additional healthy food options throughout the school campus, and to emphasize nutrition education and physical activity in the school curriculum.” In order to receive gold status, TPS, led by Brenda Watford, Thomasville City Schools child nutrition director, had to undergo two and half years of following strict USDA guidelines. Participating schools had to submit their entire menus for a
See FOOD, Page A6
DCS calls on county to increase 2010-11 budget BY ERIN WILTGEN Staff Writer Davidson County Schools faces the classic 2010 catch-22 — how to improve a system with ever-dwindling funds. But even in the face of a potential funding cut from the state, the Davidson County Board of Education has set new goals. And to reach them, the board turns to the county, asking the Davidson County Board of Commissioners for a 3.5 percent increase in the local budget for the 2010-2011 school year. “Our goal, the superinten-
‘We need teachers. We have students, we have to have teachers. So we have to have money to pay them.’ — Pam Sink DCS Chief Finance Officer dent’s goal, for 2010-11 is to reduce the class size back to the 2008-09 year to enhance the quality of literacy instruction,” said Pam Sink, chief finance officer. “And to save jobs.” The local budget — the amount not covered by state or government funds — would total $25
Smart Start of Davidson County, a local non-profit organization committed to providing opportunities for young children, is offering parents a chance to see what programs are available to them this weekend while their kids are off playing. With support from Davidson County Local Interagency Council and Thomasville Medical Center, Smart Start is sponsoring the 11th annual Itty Bitty Kiddie Festival at the Davidson County Fairgrounds today from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. to raise awareness about the many services the agency offers families with young children. Admission is free with a canned or boxed food donation that will benefit Fairgrove Family Resource Center of Davidson County. “We try and do something a little different every year,” Linda Leon-
million if the commissioners approved the request, up from the $24 million of the current school year. Besides decreasing class sizes to improve the teacher-to-student ration — 2008-09 figures were 21.7 students per teacher at the elementary level, 25.5 per
teacher at the middle school level and 23.9 per teacher at the high school level — the increased budget will also go towards other basic needs. Sink said the cost of utilities will go up, and the school system hopes to update computers and software. Other cost increases are more complicated and link to the $11 million decrease in state budgetary funds last year. With that cut, the state also did away with five staff development programs, and local governments now must pick up
See BUDGET, Page A8
Partly Cloudy 75/41
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Thomasville, North Carolina • Your Town. Your Times.
WHEN: Today, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. WHERE: Davidson County Fairgrounds
ard, executive director of Smart Start, said. “This is a great family day for people. It’s a great opportunity to let families know about the services we offer the community. Our organization not only delivers services but also funds services out in our community. So many of the services are free.” Smart Start of Davidson County offers readiness programs for children up to five years old in an effort to help them reach their potential by improving child care, parenting resources and access to health care. More than 30 agencies will be attending the fair, which has grown exponentially over the past decade. In its first year, the festival attracted less than 1,000 people, compared to 2009 when more than 3,000 attended. While parents are learning about programs dealing with school readiness, occupational therapy, human and preschool services, child care and scholarships, kids will have access to a variety of
See FESTIVAL, Page A8
A2 A4 A5 A6 B7 B3 B6
A2 – Thomasville Times – Saturday, April 17, 2010
Itty Bitty Kiddie Festival
Dancing in the Moonlight
Thomasville Medical Center, in conjunction with Smart Start of Davidson County, will host the 11th Annual Itty Bitty Kiddie Festival on today from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., rain or shine. The event will take place at the Davidson County Fairgrounds, 400 Greensboro St. Ext. in Lexington. Admission is free with a canned or boxed good to be donated to Fair Grove Family Resource Center. For more information, call 249-6688.
Communities In Schools of Thomasville will hold its signature fundraising event today beginning at 6:30 p.m. This evening of dining and dancing under the stars will be held at the home of Dr. Dave and Jane Williams. The Tom Holladay Orchestra, featuring the Lamplighters, will provide the entertainment and dance music from 8 until 10 p.m. The food is being provided by Pepper Moon Catering. Tickets are $150 per couple, $85 per individual, and a table of 10 for $600. For tickets or more information, please call Kim Coltrane at 474-4206. All proceeds will benefit Communities In Schools of Thomasville and the children of Thomasville.
Bazaar Habitat For Humanity
Habitat For Humanity is seeking volunteers to help build decent and affordable homes in Thomasville. No construction experience is necessary. Volunteers must be at least 16 years of age. The work site is located at 508 Jarrett St. Work begins at 8 a.m. each Saturday and ends at noon. This Saturday’s work will include framing. For further information contact Linda Berrier at 4768570 or visit www.habitat.org.
The Interact Club at Western Guilford High School in Greensboro is hosting a bazaar today at Friendly Avenue Baptist Church to benefit Victory Junction Gang Camp. The goal of the event is to raise $5,000 to send two kids to camp this summer. It is a summer camp where chronically and terminally ill children can swim, play and have fun like most kids have done over the years. These campers can only attend through donations from the community due to the high cost.
Walk, Run, Ride for Life
Walk, Run, Ride for Life will be held today at Finch Park in Lexington at 15 Paul Beck Road. Registration begins at 7:30 a.m. Bike riders will leave at 8:30 a.m. Runners will depart at 10 a.m. for a 5K run, and walkers will begin at 10:30 a.m. For more information, go to davidsoncountycancerservices.com, carolinacancerservices.org or call 249-7265.
The Davidson County Health Department is sponsoring a Rabies Clinic today. The clinic will be held at the Davidson County Health Department in Lexington from 2 to 4 p.m. Dr. Greg Hedrick will be administering the vaccines. The cost is $5 per vaccination at the clinic. All rabies vaccines administered at the clinic will be one-year vaccines only, unless the owner or responsible party can show a rabies certificate proving the animal is properly vaccinated. All animals must remain in the vehicle. The owner of the animal maintains responsibility for their animal while at the clinic. Animals should be handled by an adult. All dogs must be on a leash and cats must be in a carrier. North Carolina law requires that all dogs, cats and ferrets more than four months of age be vaccinated against rabies. They can be vaccinated as young as three months of age. Owners not complying with this law may be fined $100 per day. North Carolina law also requires that rabies vaccinations shall be given only by a licensed veterinarian.
The American Cancer Society will hold a fish fry today from noon to 3 p.m. at The Strickland Center, 800 Kahler St. Cost is $7 for a plate, $4 for a sandwich and $1.50 for a hot dog. Proceeds benefit Davidson County Relay For Life.
Ladies’ afternoon out bingo party
The American Cancer Society will hold a ladies’ afternoon out bingo party today. Doors open at 3 p.m., and bingo begins at 4 p.m. The event will take place in the Grace Lutheran Fellowship Hall, 115 Unity St. Admission is $10. Proceeds benefit Davidson County Relay For Life.
Relay For Life captain’s meeting High Point’s American Cancer Society’s 2010 Relay For Life (a walking relay) will have a team captain’s meeting on Monday, April 19, at 7 p.m. at The Millis Center, 601 North Elm St., in High Point. This will be the largest Relay For Life ever to be held in High Point, hosting more than double the number of teams participating in last year’s event. This year’s relay will have a new location: Southwest Guilford High School, in High Point. It will also have new hours and day: Saturday, May 22, from noon till midnight. The event is held annually with more than 4,000 relay events taking place across the U.S. The purpose of Relay is for the American Cancer Society to raise money for the fight against cancer. The event is a family event. There will be ceremonies, food, entertainment, competition, auctions, raffles and fellowship. It will be open to the public. To enter a team, contact Rich at (336) 905-7954 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
High blood pressure program Local Modern Woodmen of America families will meet Monday, April 19, at 5:30 p.m. to learn about high blood pressure. The dinner will be held at the Pizza Inn, located at 110 W. Fairfield Road, in High Point. The event will feature Carol Ann Robles, the health education educator at Wheatmore High School.
She will make a short presentation about blood pressure, answer questions and test blood pressure for anyone who would like a check. All guests and members at the dinner will receive a discount of $3 per person off their meal from Modern Woodmen. For more information, call Glenda Kirby at 441-5328.
Learn to use the Internet and e-mail
The Davidson County Department of Senior Services Senior Dynamics Program in conjunction with Davidson County Community College are offering Internet and e-mail classes for adults 55 and older. This hands-on course will teach participants how to access the internet, surf the World Wide Web, and send and receive e-mails. Classes will be held at the Lexington Senior Center located at 106 Alma Owens Drive each Thursday from 9:15 to 11:45 a.m. beginning April 22. The fee for this 10-week course is $65. Registration is required. To register or for more information, please call 2422290 or e-mail Stefanie.Poore@DavidsonCountyNC.Gov. Deadline for registration is April 19. All fees are due upon registration.
Friends of the Lexington Library will sponsor its annual sale April 22-24 in the old Blockbuster Video at 1007 Raleigh Road. Helen and Walter Brinkley donated numerous books from their personal collection, including cookbooks, law-related books and Civil War histories. Other items available for sale include CDs, DVDs, books-on-tape, videos, games and puzzles. Prices range from 50 cents to $6. The event begins on Thursday, April 22, when Friends of the Library members are admitted from 4 to 7 p.m. Memberships are available at the door. The doors open to the general public Friday, April 23, from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. and again Saturday, April 24, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. The sale will close for an hour and then reopen from 3 until 5 p.m. for a bag sale. Grocery bags will be sold for $6 each.
April 17, 2010
Thomasville Times Weather 7-Day Local Forecast
Weather Trivia When did the first attempts at weather forecasting begin?
Sunday Mostly Sunny 66/39
Monday Sunny 68/41
Tuesday Mostly Sunny 68/44
Wednesday Mostly Sunny 71/45
Almanac Last Week High Day 77 Thursday 66 Friday 69 Saturday 75 Sunday 77 Monday 79 Tuesday Wednesday 74
Low Normals Precip 59 68/43 0.89" 48 68/44 0.17" 40 68/44 0.00" 39 69/44 0.00" 48 69/44 0.00" 52 69/45 0.00" 49 69/45 0.00"
Sunrise 6:45 a.m. 6:43 a.m. 6:42 a.m. 6:41 a.m. 6:40 a.m. 6:38 a.m. 6:37 a.m.
Precipitation . . . . . . . . . . . . .1.06" Normal precipitation . . . . . . .0.77" Departure from normal . . . .+0.29" Average temperature . . . . . . .60.9º Average normal temperature .56.4º Departure from normal . . . . .+4.5º
Sunset 7:56 p.m. 7:57 p.m. 7:57 p.m. 7:58 p.m. 7:59 p.m. 8:00 p.m. 8:01 p.m.
Data as reported from Greensboro
Moonrise 8:26 a.m. 9:19 a.m. 10:20 a.m. 11:26 a.m. 12:35 p.m. 1:45 p.m. 2:55 p.m. Last 5/5
0 - 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11+
UV Index 0-2: Low, 3-5: Moderate, 6-7: High, 8-10: Very High 11+: Extreme Exposure
Around the State Forecast Moonset 11:34 p.m. Next Day 12:32 a.m. 1:25 a.m. 2:10 a.m. 2:50 a.m. 3:25 a.m. New 5/13
Saturday Hi/Lo Wx
Sunday Hi/Lo Wx
Monday Hi/Lo Wx
Asheville Cape Hatteras Chapel Hill Charlotte Greenville Raleigh Wilmington Winston-Salem
69/38 72/50 76/42 78/44 81/43 76/42 80/53 74/40
64/38 62/51 66/39 69/42 68/43 67/41 67/45 65/39
66/40 62/51 67/40 70/45 71/44 68/43 70/47 66/42
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Local UV Index
Today we will see partly cloudy skies with a slight chance of showers, high temperature of 75º, humidity of 42% and an overnight low of 41º. The record high temperature for today is 90º set in 2002. The record low is 29º set in 1949. Sunday, skies will be mostly sunny with a high temperature of 66º, humidity of 36% and an overnight low of 39º. Expect sunny skies Monday with a high temperature of 68º.
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Friday Sunny 75/50
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Sun/Moon Chart This Week Day Saturday Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Thursday Mostly Sunny 74/48
Answer: In 900 B.C., the Babylonians were recording wind direction.
Saturday Partly Cloudy 75/41
Saturday, April 17, 2010 â€“ Thomasville Times â€“ A3
FROM PAGE A1 JOBS From page A1
offer an average annual wage comparable to Davidson County average annual wage of $29,640, though salaries will vary by position. Set to purchase the vacant Stanley Furniture distribution facility on Hackney Street, the company will assemble frame materials, foam and upholstered material from vendors into finished furniture. â€œYouâ€™ve got a mighty fine building,â€? Walser said. â€œItâ€™ll be there when weâ€™re gone.â€? Though the cooperation of state and local officials as well as proximity to existing North Carolina facilities played a role in the final decision, George said one of the main reasons the company chose Lexington was Davidson Countyâ€™s rich history in furniture craftsmanship. â€œJust being a furniture area, we think the skill of the people in this area will be good,â€? he said. â€œWe thought it would fit our needs very well. The decision in the end may have seemed obvious enough, but, as George said, it certainly was a process. County officials began talking with United Furniture more than a year ago. â€œIt was a marathon effort,â€? said Bob Cottam, private consultant for the company. â€œWe were faced with a daunting task.â€? Not only was the Davidson County Economic Development Commission â€” spearheaded by Steve Googe â€” involved in negotiations, so was the Davidson County Board of Commissioners, Walser, state representatives
such as Rep. Hugh Holliman and officials from the North Carolina Department of Commerce, to name a few. â€œIf economic development were an Olympic sport, it wouldnâ€™t be an individual event,â€? said Dale Carroll, deputy secretary of commerce. â€œIt would be a team sport. We appreciate everybody that came together to make this project successful.â€? But the process doesnâ€™t stop now. â€œThe task we have today is we turn the page,â€? Cottam said. â€œOn Monday, weâ€™ve got to start the process of making furniture.â€? Cottam said United Furniture hopes to start production on May 15, though George was less clear on the dates. â€œI hate to put a time frame on it,â€? George said. â€œI would say soon.â€? George said he hopes to begin the hiring process in May, though he isnâ€™t sure as of yet how or when the company will begin advertising the job openings. Though sooner is better than later, the county and Lexington officials at the meeting said they were more than thrilled with the guarantee of so many jobs to the area. Board of Commissioner Chairman Dr. Max Walser said that the county has lost 10,000 jobs over the past few years, 5,000 from the furniture industry. Since then, about 15,000 jobs have been created. John Walser went on to add that six ribbon cuttings have brought a total of 100 jobs, but most have been small companies. â€œItâ€™s been a long dry spell,â€? John Walser said. â€œI think weâ€™re starting to recover. Itâ€™s a very happy day in Lexington.â€?
And for many in the room, the coming of a new furniture company to Davidson County brings a personal touch. John Walser used to work for United Furniture in 1965. â€œI told a reporter earlier, itâ€™s deja vu all over again,â€? he said. â€œShe said, â€˜I hope not.â€™ At least in the beginning weâ€™ve got it right this time.â€? Max Walserâ€™s father worked at Dixie Furniture Company, and though he didnâ€™t make a lot of money, the board chairman said his dad was still able to raise his three kids and send them to college. â€œIt was people like him in those industries that were the glue that held this community together,â€? Max Walser said. Near the end of the press conference, Carroll presented George with a decorative plate engraved with the state motto and Cottam with a North Carolina flag as a sign of the state and countyâ€™s appreciation. â€œWhen you created these jobs,â€? Carroll said, â€œyou certainly are maintaining and living that state motto.â€?
Relay For Life plans softball tournament TIMES STAFF REPORT Davidson County Relay for Life Softball Tournament, sponsored by Clearview Baptist Churchâ€™s Relay for Life Team, will be held April 23 and 24 at Bethany United Methodist Church, Hwy 47, in Lexington. There is a $175.00 entry fee. It is a one-pitch tournament, with each team guaranteed four games. The top two teams from each bracket will play single elimination for first and second. The first- and second-place teams will trophies.
Hamburgers, Hot Dogs, and other refreshments will be sold. Proceeds benefit the American Cancer Societyâ€™s Relay for Life of
Davidson County. For more information or to sign up, please contact Johnny Miller at (336) 239-7295.
WE BUY GOLD!!
Staff Writer Erin Wiltgen can be reached at 8883576 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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