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News for members of 4-County Electric Power Association

Chelsea Rick Miss Mississippi

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Her year as Miss Mississippi ‘worth every sacrifice’

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Grab a pole and head outside– it’s bream fishing season

Periodical postage (ISSN 1052 2433)

15 Festival celebrates Tupelo’s historic burger


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© Kubota Tractor Corporation, 2014


May 2014 I Today in Mississippi

One who tries and fails is more likely to succeed ersistence pays off, if you’re on the right track to start with. And who’s to say you’re not if you believe in yourself. That is a lesson I hope is taught in every classroom, school gym and Sunday school in America. There are so many examples all around us of the good that comes from people who don’t give up. Kids need to know early in life that dreams can come true for those who are willing to work for them and stay the course when inevitable setbacks occur. Miss Mississippi Chelsea Rick, the subject of our cover story, won her crown after not one or two but five tries. That’s not so unusual for a pageant contestant who is driven to win despite disappointments, is willing to pay some dues in the form of hard work and focus, and has the benefit of a supportive family, as Chelsea does. Another example of persistence: Henry Ford is said to have been inspired as a child by his mother, who encouraged his tinkering—no doubt instilling confidence in the young man. But he was fired from his first job and failed with his first two companies before succeeding with Ford Motor Co. Despite failure, he went on to create the assembly-line method of production, an innovation that transformed American manufacturing. In the early 1800s, Charles Goodyear endured debtor’s prison, homelessness and countless failures in his experiments to make raw rubber weatherproof. The problem was that rubber tended to melt into a smelly mess in the summer. Yet he persevered and eventually succeeded. His work helped Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co. become the world’s largest rubber business. The irony is that neither Charles Goodyear nor his family had any connection whatsoever to the company named in his honor. Closer to home, here’s another example:

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On the cover Chelsea Rick, of Fulton, reflects on her year serving as Miss Mississippi 2013, and the life-long effort to attain the title. Rick participated in the Electric Power Associations of Mississippi Youth Leadership program in 2007. Her family is served by Tombigbee Electric Power Association. Story begins on page 4.

Nearly all the 26 electric power associations in Mississippi have reached the 75-year milestone in their history, thanks to forward-thinking founders and their perseverance. In most cases, these founders were farmers, none of whom had ever before managed an electric utility. They knew, however, that affordable electric service was the key to shaking off the effects of the Great Depression, and that no My Opinion one would bring electriciMichael Callahan ty to their farms but Executive Vice President/CEO them. The existing EPAs of Mississippi investor-owned utilities saw it as a money-losing venture and refused to build lines deep into rural Mississippi. Impassioned rural leaders didn’t give up. They decided to organize their own local electric cooperatives, called electric power associations, and sign up members to receive electricity after their homes were wired. Some people who had never before seen an electric light weren’t so eager for this mysterious new energy source. They were afraid it might harm their cows’ milk production. (They were correct to fear its power but for the wrong reasons. Electric service, when used safely, is safe.) There were countless other obstacles for electric co-ops to come through the decades, from the trials of emergency power restoration to the adoption of new technology. Today, electric power associations excel at delivering affordable, reliable electric service and, through perseverance, meeting challenges head on to ensure the continuation of this tradition. JOIN TODAY IN MISSISSIPPI

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Today in Mississippi OFFICERS Brad Robison - President Randy Wallace - First Vice President Keith Hurt - Second Vice President Tim Smith - Secretary/Treasurer

EDITORIAL STAFF Michael Callahan - Executive Vice President/CEO Ron Stewart - Sr. Vice President, Communications Mark Bridges - Manager, Support Services Debbie H. Stringer - Editor Elissa Fulton - Communications Specialist Trey Piel - Digital Media Manager Rickey McMillan - Graphics Specialist Linda Hutcherson - Administrative Assistant

Vol. 67 No. 5

EDITORIAL OFFICE & ADVERTISING 601-605-8600 Acceptance of advertising by Today in Mississippi does not imply endorsement of the advertised product or services by the publisher or Mississippi’s Electric Power Associations. Product satisfaction and delivery responsibility lie solely with the advertiser. • National advertising representative: National Country Market, 800-626-1181 Circulation of this issue: 430,216 Non-member subscription price: $9.50 per year

The Official Publication of the Electric Power Associations of Mississippi Today in Mississippi (ISSN 1052-2433) is published eleven times a year (Jan.Nov.) by Electric Power Associations of Mississippi, Inc., P.O. Box 3300, Ridgeland, MS 39158-3300, or 665 Highland Colony Parkway, Ridgeland, MS 39157. Phone 601-605-8600. Periodical postage paid at Ridgeland, MS, and additional office. The publisher (and/or its agent) reserves the right to refuse or edit all advertising. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to: Today, P.O. Box 3300, Ridgeland, MS 39158-3300

Visit us online at www.todayinmississippi.com

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Our Homeplace

The Natchez Trace Parkway is one of the prettiest places to be in Mississippi any time of year, but especially in the spring. The dogtrot-style log cabin, above, in Ridgeland is popular with photographers and picnickers. The Trace celebrates its 75th anniversary May 18 at the Parkway Visitor Center, near Tupelo. The free event will include live dulcimer music, children’s activities, historical reenactors, classic cars and more from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.

Mississippi is ... Cotton fields, plowed and planted. The threat of too much rain, or not enough. Daddy worked so hard to see that first bloom, and then the fluffy cotton. Our four-row picker swallowed cotton stalks, tossing the white clouds into the overhead basket. Daddy dumped the basket into the tall, yellow metal trailers nearby. We kids jumped into the mounds to stomp them down. We were cautioned not to take a rock into the cotton or it could “set the gin on fire!” Sometimes Mama brought a hot supper to the fields, because “Woody” [a TV weatherman] said it was going to rain. Now, 50 years later, this is still what Mississippi means to me. – Carolyn (Ganann) Robinson, Lawrence Some of my fondest memories are those of my sister and me taking our old dog Rover snake hunting down the ditch bank. He would go in the weeds, find the snake and kill it. That was fun until a blue racer snake stood on its tail and chased him down the ditch. (So much for snake hunting.) We would take a tub and go berry and plum picking. Mother would make jam and jelly. She would tell me to take my baby sister’s bottle down in the pasture and fill it with milk. That probably wouldn’t be allowed now. It would have to be homogenized, pasteurized and probably fertilized. Mom and Dad did not know it, but sometimes we would ride the cow, Old Blue, back to the barn. They probably wondered why she did not give much milk. I have lived in several other states but always come back to good old Mississippi. – Hazel J. Nettles, Olive Branch

What’s Mississippi to you? What makes you proud to be a Mississippian? What do you treasure most about life in our state? Send your thoughts to Today in Mississippi, P.O. Box 3300, Ridgeland, MS 39158, or email them to: news@epaofms.com Please keep your comments brief. Submissions are subject to editing.

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Today in Mississippi



Chelsea Rick

May 2014

Miss Mississippi crown a life-long goal for future physician

By Debbie Stringer Chelsea Rick dreamed of becoming Miss Mississippi as a young girl watching the glittering pageant on TV, but not for reasons one might expect. “It was the talent,” she said. “Of course, I loved the princess gowns—any little girl does—but I love to sing and dance. And to see those girls getting to do their talent on such a big stage really drew me in.” Rick started dancing at age 3, singing at 5. Watching the pageants with her mother, Rhonda Rick, she realized how she wanted to use her talent. “My mom instilled in me the idea that these girls were about more than just pretty clothes. They were compassionate, articulate and intelligent. And the most important thing was that they were getting money for their education,” Rick said. Clay and Rhonda Rick, Tombigbee Electric Power Association members living in Fulton, taught their two children that college provided the means to reach their dreams, and scholarships could make college possible for them both. The Ricks sacrificed to provide opportunities that would benefit their children in the future. For Chelsea, that meant voice and dance lessons. “In turn, we were supposed to figure out how to get scholarships for college. So I decided at an early age that Miss Mississippi was one of the ways I was going to do that,” Rick said. Last summer her dream came true: Competing as Miss Amory Railroad Fes-

tival, Rick was crowned Miss Mississippi 2013 after winning talent and swimsuit preliminary competitions. The victory was “bittersweet,” Rick said. “It’s like the end of a chapter. You’ve spent your whole life wanting something and working for it, and then you’ve got to make the most of it.” It was her fifth year to compete in the state pageant that leads the nation in the amount of scholarships granted. Through the Miss America program, which includes the Miss Mississippi pageant, Rick has accumulated some $40,000 in

scholarships. A graduate of Millsaps College, she is studying at osteopathic medicine at William Carey University. As a Rural Physicians Scholar, Rick earns a scholarship for each year she commits to practicing medicine in rural Mississippi after medical school. Rick is quick to explain she is not a “pageant girl.” She didn’t even compete in her high school’s beauty pageant. “I’m naturally a very shy person. I was so shy I would hardly even talk to anyone other than my mother and brother,” she said.

Yet on stage, she felt she could relax and let her personality emerge. “That led me to realize that if I could do it there, I could do it elsewhere.” Rick honed her talents in school stage productions and at the Tupelo Community Theater, where she played Sandy in “Grease.” “Everything I did was leading up to being Miss Mississippi,” she said. A “huge” turning point came in her junior year of high school when she was chosen to represent Tombigbee Electric Power Association in the Electric Power Associations of Mississippi 2007 Youth Leadership program. Participating in the program’s two components—the Youth Leadership Workshop and Washington, D.C., Youth Tour—gave Chelsea opportunities to learn and grow in ways she didn’t expect. (See sidebar on page 12.) “It helped me so much in every area of my life. It was really the first time I had an opportunity to really get some concrete skills and leadership values, and lessons on becoming a confident leader,” she said. A few weeks after returning from the Youth Tour, Chelsea competed in Mississippi’s Junior Miss scholarship pageant, her first “stepping stone” to the Miss Mississippi pageant. “Had I not had the experience of the Youth Leadership program, I would not have been comfortable enough to go into the [Junior Miss] program,” she said. Now, six years later, Rick is enjoying an “absolutely wonderful” year as Miss Mississippi, including a thrilling week at


May 2014

Rick, left, visits Toni, 4, at Blair E. Batson Children’s Hospital. As a pre-med student, Rick was a frequent volunteer to the hospital; this visit was her first as Miss Mississippi. Taking her mother, Rhonda Rick, above, to the 2013 Egg Bowl in Starkville has topped all her other Miss Mississippi appearances so far, Rick said. The newly crowned Miss Mississippi, lower left, waves to the audience and her mother at the 2013 pageant in Vicksburg.

‘It was worth every sacrifice I made because the whole program is an opportunity to make yourself into the best person you can be.’ –Chelsea Rick

the Miss America pageant last September. “Not having won Miss America was fine with me. I did work very hard to do my very best to bring honor to the people of my state. But when I came home, it wasn’t sad because I knew I had the opportunity to go out and meet Mississippians, and serve them,” she said. She put medical school on hold to travel the state for personal appearances and to work on her platform, an initiative she calls “Full Plates, Healthy States.” The emphasis is on childhood hunger. “I work to try to make sure that food pantries have more nutritious foods, to feed the hungry and also to spread awareness of the importance of nutrition,” she said. In her appearances at civic clubs and

other community-based organizations, she encourages audiences to learn what local resources are available to help the hungry and to support the effort with donations of food or money. “I’ve raised over 12,000 pounds of food for the hungry through my initiative,” she said. “This year I partnered with Sanderson Farms to help give out thousands of pounds of chicken at Easter.” Rick has been been working on hunger issues for some 10 years. “I’ve been working with hunger since I was 13, in my local hometown food pantry. That was my leadership niche. I wanted to be service oriented and use any chance I could to do something benevolent,” she said. Another focus as Miss Mississippi is the interest in veterans she developed during her Washington Youth Tour experience, where she was moved by the “magnitude of names” on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Through a partnership with the Mississippi Army National Guard and visits to the V.A. Hospital in Continued on page 12

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Today in Mississippi I May 2014

Elvis may be closer than you think

few months ago up in north Mississippi, I ran across the old Jacinto Courthouse again. When it was built it was right in the middle of Tishomingo County. But after carving several smaller counties out of Tishomingo, the old county courthouse ended up being in the middle of nowhere and no longer the courthouse of anything. Now it is an interesting place to go see. Oddly, the old courthouse came to mind after my brother Rob in Memphis told me that former WHBQ Radio personality George Kline asked about me. I was flattered because although I grew up in the Delta listening to him, I don’t recall ever meeting him. I figured he heard about me through Rob, who also worked at WHBQ back in the day and Rob does know George. Just a quick aside and I’ll get back to the old Jacinto Courthouse. You’ve heard of the “Six Degrees of Separation” theory. Supposedly, all of us are separated by no more than six people from anyone else in the world. You know someone who knows someone who knows someone. For instance, you probably know someone who knows one of our senators. And that senator knows the president, no doubt. And the president knows pretty much every head of state in the world. So you are already in touch with world leaders and still have a few degrees left. All this to say George Kline is the first person who ever played an Elvis record on the radio. So he knew Elvis. And he knows my brother. And I know

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The old Jacinto Courthouse is located close to where Tishomingo, Alcorn and Prentiss counties meet in northeast Mississippi. This is just up the road from Tupelo. So it isn't surprising to run across Elvis stories in this part of the state. Photo: Walt Grayson

my brother. So I am at best only three degrees away from Elvis! But wait! I got to thinking about it, I have cousins who grew up in Tupelo and went to school with Elvis and remember him singing “Old Shep” in assemMississippi bly. So they Seen knew him. Two by Walt Grayson degrees of separation! Wait, wait! I’ve been to Tupelo Hardware where Elvis bought his first guitar and talked to people who used to sell him guitar picks and such as that. And on top of that, my sister worked in Memphis about the time Elvis was just

becoming famous before he moved to Graceland. She got his autograph on the back of her pay check, the only piece of paper she had with her. So she met him! More examples of just two degrees between me and Elvis. But I came across one of the best Elvis stories in Boonville on my way back home from that visit to Jacinto. I was chatting with Billy Hester. Billy has an ice cream parlor in downtown Boonville. It was in the little courtyard behind his ice cream place that he told me his Elvis story. He motioned to the building across the street and told me that it used to be a theatre. “Back in 1954 we had Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins and Johnny Cash here to put on a show,” Billy said. “I paid them $25 apiece out of my own pocket.” He concluded, “That’s my Elvis story and I’m sticking with it!”

I’ve about decided if you live in Mississippi and are more than two or three degrees away from Elvis, you need to get out more. And I will save my story about the elderly Yazoo City man I met who once talked to a lady who was at Ford’s Theater the night Lincoln was shot. That makes me just three degrees from Lincoln! After this, I expect you and I aren’t separated by so much that you couldn’t have me over for Sunday dinner sometime! Walt Grayson is the host of “Mississippi Roads” on Mississippi Public Broadcasting television, and the author of two “Looking Around Mississippi” books and “Oh! That Reminds Me: More Mississippi Homegrown Stories.” Contact Grayson at: walt@waltgrayson.com


Plug into safety!

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Electricity is so much a part of daily life that we hardly give it much thought. But electrical safety should never be taken for granted. Whether working on the farm, relaxing by the pool or doing some spring fix-ups, keep an eye out for power lines, utility poles and all other electrical equipment. Never touch a power line for any reason, even if you suspect it is dead. Protect yourself and your loved ones by practicing electrical safety every day.

Think Safety First!

A message from the 26 electric cooperatives that serve 1.8 million Mississippians


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Today in Mississippi



May 2014

Simple pleasures and pronounced rewards here was little science involved in the pursuit. No deep philosophical exercises or concentrated research required. It was a fundamental knowledge with little basis save elementary experience. We simply knew that the first cooperative

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day of May was one that should be spent fishing. And these fishing excursions were grand even though they would now be viewed by some as far too pedestrian. No roaring outboards, no expensive tackle, no exotic environs. The most detailed and complex of these outings

The author admires a hefty bluegill he took last year on a Delta oxbow. The thrill remains! Photo: Jimmy Mills

involved a two-hour drive along dusty roads to a Delta oxbow. Take that out of the equation, however, and basics again surfaced. Cane poles, cricket boxes, stringers, maybe a battered ice chest with a bottle opener in one end— these were our only tools. A cypress boat at times awaited rental at those oxbows, or a similar device was tied to a tree along a stream near home. But oh, the recall of such visits! Bream were the primary target in those days. Bluegills specifically. The occasional redear would come, as would the catfish or crappie or bass or goggle eye. We took them all gladly, for each would be welcome on the table at a later date. Fried crisp and brown, these fish made up a significant portion of our diet in those days. They remain hard to beat for a country supper. Fishing was done with gusto. Even so, there was always time for life lessons. Elements such as respect, courtesy, safety, conservation and self-reliance were not only discussed; these were demonstrated and practiced. Glorious and beneficial times these childhood episodes on Mississippi waters were. They can and should be the same today. The Magnolia State is filled with productive fishing waters. Rivers, creeks, ponds and lakes abound. Most are open for public use. Oxbows, the most renowned of which are located along that big river on the western side of the state, are basically old river runs that the main channel abandoned as it chewed through big bends and opted to change course. These are famous destinations for anglers. But these are not the only spots of interest. There are smaller oxbows on less prodigious streams. They deserve a serious look, for they hold good supplies of fish. And then there is the huge TennTom Waterway and its resultant pools and, yes, oxbows. There is also a broad assortment of state lakes operated by the state Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks. Some of these are situated within a state park and some are separate entities, but all are well managed for fishing. And one seeking good fishing would be remiss to ignore the simple farm pond. These are privately owned, but a courteous request may garner an invitation. This is particularly true of the angler who wishes to introduce a child to the pastime of fishing. A gracious approach by said individual, with wide-

eyed children in tow, seldom results in refusal from country land/pond owners. And those children stand in a position to grasp a great deal of truth about life while so engaged. This month is May, that magical time mentioned at the outset of this discourse. Though I don’t recall ever having been told, common knowledge gained from experience and modern tools of fisheries research reveals that the first full moon of May is the target date for an explosion of spawning activity by the bluegills. It can come earlier, but even if it does, that first full moon will see a marked increase by these grand little specimens. And each full moon of each successive month through July will do the same. Be aware, also, that these are not the only times an angler can catch fish, and bluegills are not the only fish available. There are others in both categories. It is just that May offers a nearperfect situation for angling, and bluegills are the near-perfect fish for simple, funfilled action that has few rivals. It is too good to miss. Mississippi It is difficult Outdoors for me to grasp, by Tony Kinton but those early memories of simple fishing were made more than 50 years back. Still, they have remained fresh and fruitful. Regrets? Yes, I have some. One is that those 50 years can’t be erased. But then, I’m not at all sure I would choose to do so even if I were able. The passing of years has its own unique rewards. Another regret, however, is that I too often allowed many wondrous Mays to slip by minus bream fishing. I can rectify that. There will not be 50 more years for my indulgence in bream fishing, so I must get about it with the same gusto I had as a child. So with your begged permission and hoped-for understanding, I will conclude this article and go to a small oxbow down the road, cane pole and cricket box in hand. It is, after all, May. Tony Kinton has been an active outdoors writer for 30 years. His newest book, “Rambling Through Pleasant Memories,” is now available. Order from Amazon.com or: www.tonykinton.com


May 2014

Letter to my readers ach month when I sit down to write you a letter, I have a fresh pot of coffee brewing and imagine you as friend who just popped in for a visit. If you were really here, our conversation would begin at the kitchen table where I would explain my three objectives when writing “Grin ‘n’ Bare It.” I do this every few years for the benefit of new readers. Yet if you and I have been friends from the beginning, since 1982, I’ll remind you that was the year “Grin” was born or first published in the George County Times, later the Sun Herald and, since 1994, in Today in Mississippi. The first objective is to write a true story; second, to write about a subject that the majority have in common, and third, to write entertaining yet informative topics. Readers write and share their stories about a particular column—for example: pets, book collections, health issues, wives and husbands, grandchildren, housework, embarrassments and many more. I love that. They also write and share their travels or ask about a previous travel log. Readers and friends, I appreciate all of you. I wish, in reality, I could meet each of you and share coffee at my kitchen table. Not all at once, of course.

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Southern hospitality is real. Each of us has told a friend or new acquaintance to come see us. Here’s a little advice: Don’t tell people from up north or from another country to come visit you unless you truly mean it. I’m talking about people who have to unpack luggage when they stop by for a visit. This year is the sixth year we are expecting a “luggage visit” from a couple who live in Australia. We didn’t go to Australia but met them on a tour when we went to Europe. It’s not that I don’t like them, because I do, but we’ve run out of entertainment within a day’s drive. If you are vacationing in Mississippi and find yourself near the coast this summer, drop me a note and I will send you a list of sights to visit near Lucedale. We are a tad over an hour’s drive from Biloxi and Gulf Shores, Ala. You will be surprised at the unique sightseeing adventures near our small town. From Dauphin Island, Ala. to Broadway productions and opera in Hattiesburg. Before you begin your Mississippi vacation, may I remind you that it’s time for spring cleaning! It’s very rewarding to come home to a clean house, because you know the lawn won’t be the same way you left it. I suggest you begin with

your refrigerator. It’s the one place you’ll always find a surprise awaiting. Not necessarily a welcome surprise. Why is it that those produce keepers, normally called “rot drawers” at my house, let you down every week. I had planned to stirfry the broccoli and fresh green beans last night. When I opened the drawer everything was covered in slime. Mr. Roy walked in at that exact moment. I closed it quickly, but not quick enough. He shook his head. “I’d like to know how much money you’ve wasted over the years in that rot drawer?” I became defensive. “I suppose you’re going to matheGrin ‘n’ matically calcuBare It late the amount by Kay Grafe of money contingent on the number of years we’ve been married. Well, just remember it’s not my fault.” “I guess you’ll tell me it’s my fault,” he said. “Why don’t you ever blame the grocery? The minute I get home, the melt-



Today in Mississippi



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down begins. That produce was ready to rot when I bought it. You’d think it could sit here two days without slime.” He rubbed his forehead. “Why didn’t you use the new produce bag I bought to keep vegetables fresh?” “That wasn’t worth the money. I put the lettuce and asparagus in it, but in no time the veggies melted through the bag to the drawer.” “How much time is ‘no’ time?” he asked. Oh, my, I was thinking how time leaps away from me. “I won’t let the rot go to waste,” I said. Then I took the drawer and poured it on the compost pile outside. If I’d answered, What don’t you understand about ‘no’?, I’d be relinquishing the argument to Mr. Roy. So I quit. See you next visit. It’s time to plan our summer trip. Time is of the essence. I don’t want my timekeeper to change his mind. It could spoil my summer. Kay Grafe is the author of “Oh My Gosh, Virginia.” To order, send name, address, phone number and $16.95, plus $3.50 S&H to Kay Grafe, 2142 Fig Farm Road, Lucedale, MS 39452.

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10  Today in Mississippi  May 2014

Board of Directors Johnny Johnson, President Mike Banks, Vice President Marty Crowder, Secretary/Treasurer John E. “Jay” Gilliland Jr. John Scarbrough Kenneth Seitz Ernest H. “Bud” Tumlinson

YOUR COOPERATIVE

Here’s an idea

By Joe Cade CEO/General Manager

Replacing your heating or cooling system?

Rural Electric Youth Tour:

Shaping our youth for 50 years The Rural Electric Youth Tour is turning 50! And oh, what a tour it’s been. “I’ve loved this trip. Every year is a new adventure,” said Ron Stewart, vice president of Electric Power Associations of Mississippi. Anyone who’s looked after a group of 16- and 17-yearolds in Washington, D.C., for Youth Tour knows how challenging and physically exhausting it is, not to mention how hot and humid the nation’s capital can be in the middle of June. But there’s a reason the program has not just endured but thrived for half a century—and why people like Stewart stick with it year after year: the students. “It’s been an honor and a pleasure to work with new groups of students each year,” Stewart said. “It’s so rewarding to see each student grow and discover how they can significantly impact their community through this program. This program truly is changing lives.” Youth Tour brings together some 1,600 teens from 43 states for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity culminating in Washington, D.C. 4-County delegates to this year’s Youth Tour, June 15-21, are John Taylor Champion of East Webster High School, Tanner Fant of Starkville Academy and Jena Dees of Mississippi School for Math and Science. Students enjoy a boat cruise down the Potomac and see the roots of American history. They learn about electric co-ops and grassroots political advocacy. These students become college roommates, professional colleagues and even lifelong friends. For some, it’s a fun trip that later brings fond memories. To others, Youth Tour inspires kids to discover the adults they’re going to be. Much has changed during the past 50 years since Youth Tour was born, but the one constant has been the students, who never fail to be amazed, inspired, humbled and grateful, according to the faithful electric co-op employees who bring

Now’s the time to upgrade your heating and cooling system. Call 4-County and ask about the Existing Home Program, which provides incentives and financing for the installation of heat pumps that meet 4-County requirements. 4-County marketing specialists can help you determine the size unit your home needs and can provide a list of Quality Contractor Network members who participate in the Quality Contractor Network members who participate in the Quality Contractor Network as established by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA). Call your local 4-County Customer Service Center for program details.

new groups back to Washington every year. For the chaperones and state coordinators, Youth Tour is an enormous amount of work culminating in just a handful of frantic days each year. Flexibility and being able to roll with the punches are must-haves. But it’s a labor of love for all involved. “I’ve had parents come up to me after the program and say, ‘I don’t know what you did, but you brought back a different kid than you took.’ And for parents to say that is gratifying and humbling,” Stewart said. To find out more about the Rural Electric Youth Tour, visit www.nreca.coop/what-wedo/youthprograms. Sunscreens lower temps ••• and energy costs As a reminder, please make plans to Interested in lowering the temperature in your attend 4-County’s Annual Meeting, set home, and lowering your energy costs as well? Try for Thursday, June 5, at the East Missunscreens offered by 4-County. sissippi Community College auditoriIf you get your sunscreens made and installed um in Mayhew. this summer, you’ll save on your electric bills Registration and health fair will begin throughout the summer months. at 9 a.m. A lunch for members begins at Call Sheila Smith at 662-245-0728 to get your 10:15 a.m. The business meeting will be held name on the sunscreen services list. at noon. This year’s meeting is special in many ways. In addiHoliday office closing tion to electing two directors and discussing the cooperative’s 4-County offices will be closed Monday, May 26, business, we will focus on 4-County’s 75th anniversary. in observance of Memorial Day. A dispatcher will We’ll have a variety of commemorative observances. And, of be available to handle emergencies. course, there will be door prizes, including a retired 4-County fleet pickup truck. Please don’t miss this special meeting! ••• Since the Co-op Connections Card was unveiled in September 2011 Please take note of the photo on page 4-County members have saved over $332,300 on 10d about 4-County’s Lineman Appreciaprescription drugs (more than $10,300 tion Day. Our linemen are the heart and in March alone) soul of this cooperative. The next time you see our linemen working, please take Look here each month to a moment to thank them for the service see the savings total they do for all of us. I tip my hat to them each and every day.

Co-op Connections Card saves


May 2014

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Annual meeting of members set for June 5 The 4-County Electric Power Association annual membership meeting will be held Thursday, June 5, at the East Mississippi Community College (EMCC) auditorium in Mayhew. Meeting times have changed this year. Registration and a health fair will Mike Banks begin at 9 a.m. Lunch for members will be at 10:15 a.m. The business portion of the annual meeting will be held at noon. Held in conjunction with the annual meeting, the health fair will provide consumers the opportunity to receive healthcare screenings from a variety of vendors. In addition to the pre-meeting health fair, the business session will include financial and management reports along with the election of two directors to the Association’s board of directors. Two incumbent directors, Johnny Johnson of Columbus, District 7 (At-Large), and Mike Banks for District 4, Nox-

ubee County, are nominated for re-election to 4-County’s board of directors. The current board members’ names were placed in nomination by the Association’s nominating committee at its March 20 meeting. In accordance with the Association’s bylaws, the candidates’ names were Johnny Johnson placed in nomination for election to three-year terms, beginning June 5 at the cooperative’s annual membership meeting. The deadline for additional nominations for director, by petition of at least 50 consumer/members, was April 21. No additional nominations were received. Ballot/proxies will be mailed by May 6 to all 4-County members. Members will also have the opportunity to vote online. The deadline for returning ballot/proxies is May 30, six days prior to the annual membership meeting, June 5, at noon. Cooperative members also have the option to go online to cast votes in this year’s election for the board of directors. Online voting will work just like the

paper ballot members receive in the mail lars in gift cards (courtesy of 4-County every year, but instead of using the mail, vendors), flat-screen televisions, other they will be able to cast their votes via home electronics and a variety of 75th the Internet. When the annual meeting anniversary commemorative items. notice and ballot arrives at member Attendees of this year’s annual meethomes in May, it will include instrucing can also expect a big return to the tions on how to cast a vote online event. The giant, multi-colored Touchinstead of returning a paper ballot. The stone Energy Hot Air Balloon will be online voting option will feature easy-to-use instructions and candidate biographies, and has the option to alert members when their votes Meeting l a u have been successfully subn n A ty ’s mitted for counting. Memat 4-Coun bers may receive an election

www.4county.org or 327-8900

The 4-County Electric Power Association annual meeting is set for Thursday, June 5, at East Mississippi Community College’s Golden Triangle campus in Mayhew. Attendees have a chance to win a retired 4-County fleet truck and other prizes, and take a hot air balloon ride.

reminder by email. Members returning their proxy/ballots, as well as those who attend the meeting, may qualify to win valuable prizes. Those returning their proxy/ballots (by mail, proxy or online voting) may qualify to win a $1,000 credit for electricity. Those attending the meeting may qualify for the grand prize, a retired 4-County fleet pickup truck. Other attendee prizes include hundreds of dol-

tethered on campus grounds, weather permitting, near the meeting entrance. The Touchstone Energy Hot Air Balloon Team will be on hand to answer any questions about the aerial device and to offer tethered rides, beginning at 8 a.m., to those members interested in flying the friendly skies above the EMCCMayhew grounds. The balloon will rise to about 70 feet high during the brief rides.

Statement of nondiscrimination 4-County Electric Power Association complies with the provisions of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, as amended, and the rules and regulations of the U.S. Department of Agriculture which provide that no person in the United States on the basis of race, color, national origin, age or handicap shall be excluded from

participation in, admission or access to, denied the benefits of, or otherwise be subjected to discrimination under any of this organization’s programs or activities. The person responsible for coordinating this organization’s nondiscrimination compliance efforts is Brian Davis, manager of human resources and training. Andy individual, or specific class of individuals, who feels that this organization has sub-

jected them to discrimination may obtain further information about the statutes and regulations listed above from and/or file a written complaint with this organization, to the Secretary, U.S. Department of Agriculture; Washington, D.C., 20250. Complaints may be filed within 180 days after the alleged discrimination. Confidentiality will be maintained to the fullest extent possible.


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Today in Mississippi  May 2014

S T E V E

&

F R E I D A

B U R T

DANCING to the beat of their own music

By Brad Barr

The couple went to school by day and worked Steve and Freida Burt dance to the beat of by night. “We lived on $32 a week,” Steve their own music. remembered. The married, retired business executives have The couple had successful business careers also been known to do club and ballroom danc- prior to their foray into dance. Steve worked for ing, including tango, waltz, salsa, fox trot and the Tennessee Valley Authority for about a year others. “You just enjoy the music, the dance in Knoxville, Tenn., with an assignment at the and each other,” Steve said recently from his Brown’s Ferry Nuclear Power home in Lowndes County. Plant. Then, the couple decided The couple began their dancing odyssey to purchase a wholesale and about seven years ago. But their own personal retail fabric business from dance actually began a little earlier in a junior Steve’s father. Sewing World high gym in Fayette, Ala. “It was raining and was born. Steve and Freida we had to have physical education class in the expanded the business to include gym. That’s where we met,” Freida rememretail locations in Columbus, bered. “There was an instant connection,” Steve Fayette and Nashville, Tenn. said. “Every several years, we had That Alabama cloudburst led to a 45-year to totally reinvent ourselves,” marriage, two children and three grandsons. Steve explained. As result of Today, the couple continues to make beautiful these changes, ABC Embroidery music together as accomplished dancers. “One Systems and Burt Rentals Inc. of the best things for a happy marriage is to were added to their businesses. have common interests. Dance is right up there Freida became a well-known conat the top of the list,” Steve said. “It keeps us sultant within the sewing and young.” machine embroidery industry and Steve is a graduate of Mississippi State Uni- penned two books. Steve has three patents for alignment tools for the embroidery industry. “You can do it with a little About 10 years ago, Steve and want-to and hard work. As Freida began selling pieces of the business. Today, the couple is long as you can move, you retired. They live life to the can dance.” fullest. Steve is a black belt in —Steve Burt Shotokan karate, an avid tennis player, a member of a local civic versity with a degree in chemical engineering. club and enjoys travel. Freida is a member of an Freida is a graduate of Mississippi University area garden club, serves on the board of direcfor women with a degree in elementary educa- tors for a local retirement community and tion. “We got married young but we promised enjoys travel. Dance, however, brings them our parents we’d go to college,” Freida said. closer together than anything. “We would

always attend business-related events where there would be dance. And we always wanted to learn. We were just too busy,” Freida said. The couple built a 22-by-24-foot dance studio/recreation area about four years ago. Once a week, an instructor from a neighboring town visits and they and other students learn a little

more about dance. The dancing duo has been involved in several area and regional dance events. “We do it for fun,” Steve said. They have met a number of people through dance, including a few couples met on the dance floor


May 2014  Today in Mississippi

of cruise ships around the world. Their favorite dance? “Whatever works for the song that’s being played at the moment,” Freida answered. Steve offers some advice for would-be dancers. “Find a good instructor, take some classes and focus on dancing. Give it a chance for at least six months,” he said. Anyone, Steve said, can learn to dance. “You can do it with a little want-to and hard work. As

long as you can move, you can dance,” he said. What do they like best about dance? “It’s a way of expressing yourself,” Freida said. “You become part of the music,” Steve added. Steve and Freida, like Fred and Ginger, are always striving for a bigger, better dance. “That goal is just of reach. You’ll never be perfect,” Steve said. “But,” Freida added, “it’s a lot of fun trying.”

Steve and Freida Burt often dance the night away in a studio adjacent to their home in Lowndes County. The retired business executives take part in a variety of ballroom dances.



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We need an all-of-the-above energy strategy Electric cooperatives are disappointed—but not surprised—that last fall the federal government officially abandoned an all-of-the-above energy strategy for a new, allbut-one approach that effectively removes coal from the nation’s fuel mix in the future. The policy, proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), sets stringent limits on carbon dioxide emissions from future coal or natural gas plants. Trouble is, the new standards are impossible to meet with existing technology. The Administration’s switch to an all-but-one energy approach would limit Americans’ access to a plentiful and affordable resource. Many of 4-County’s members are already worried about making ends meet and would find it hard to afford the significant increases in electric bills that this policy would trigger. Historically, the price of coal remains affordable and relatively stable. The U.S. Energy Information Agency reports the United States has 236 years remaining of recoverable coal reserves. Coal generates 37 percent of the nation’s electricity—our

biggest energy source by far. While all of us want to be environmentally responsible and to be proud of the legacy we leave for future generations, we also want to make sure that our friends and family who struggle to pay a power bill don’t struggle even more in the future. You can help. Visit www.action.coop and send a message to the EPA telling them we need an all-of-the-above energy strategy. And encourage your family and friends to do the same. We all need to let our voices be heard. So far, 30 4-County members and employees have sent in comments. Let’s get that number over 100!

4-County salutes linemen

4-County proud to serve our communities

4-County Electric Power Association has been involved in a number of community service projects recently, including efforts to assist the Boy Scouts of America by clearing out areas at Camp Seminole in Oktibbeha County and assisting District 3 Volunteer Fire Department in Lowndes County with a new training tower.

Watts Happening This listing of area events is compiled from information provided by area chambers of commerce and visitors’ bureaus.The events listed are subject to change. Please call to confirm dates, times and additional details.

4-County Electric Power Association honored its lineman April 18 during the cooperative’s observance of Lineman Appreciation Day. The cooperative’s 49 lineman were treated at the Corporate Center to a steak lunch with all the trimmings. The Association holds the annual event each April in honor of its linemen, who brave rain, sleet or snow to make sure the lights stay on for the cooperative’s members.

Dive into the Natural Hive: The Honey Bee Apothecary; Mississippi Modern Homestead Center, Lake Valley Road in Starkville; 3 to 5:30 p.m.; $25 for Homestead Center members, $30 for non-members; details, (662) 312-0403.

WEDNESDAY, MAY 21

19th Annual Market Street Festival; downtown Columbus area; continues through Saturday; details, (662) 3286305.

Free Small Business Workshops: Developing your Business Plan; Mississippi State University Business Incubator Building, 60 Technology Blvd.; 1 to 3 p.m.; details, (662) 3258684.

SATURDAY, MAY 10

FRIDAY, MAY 30

Hitching Lot Farmer’s Market; Second Avenue at Second Street North in Columbus; 7 to 10 a.m.; details, (662) 328-6305. Grand Opening with Suzuki Strings; Hitching Lot Farmer’s Market, Second Avenue at Second Street N. in Columbus; 7 to 10 a.m.; details, (662) 328-6305.

Mathiston 125th Anniversary Celebration; Mathiston City Park; 6:30 to 10 p.m.; details, (662) 312-8724 or (662) 263-6161.

FRIDAY, MAY 2

Thank you!

SUNDAY, MAY 18

SATURDAY, MAY 31 Second Annual MayFest; Mathiston City Park; 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.; details, (662) 312-8724 or (662) 263-6161.


May 2014 I Today in Mississippi I 11

4-County holds flag ceremony in honor of 75th anniversary Employees, retirees and members of 4-County Electric Power Association gathered April 22 to hold a special flagraising ceremony in honor of the cooperative’s 75th anniversary. The commemorative 75th anniversary flag will fly in front of the 4-County Corporate Center the remainder of the year. “Seventy-five years in the making. Telling 4-County’s story in a few words just can’t be done,” 4-County CEO Joe Cade said at the Corporate Center event. “This flag-raising ceremony is just one of the ways we are celebrating our 75th anniversary this year. The ceremony is in honor of those members, directors and employees who paved the way before us.” The flag comprises 4-County’s traditional red, white and blue colors. The cooperative has a rich history. In the 1930s, a group of local business-

April 6

Members of 4-County’s board of directors display the cooperative’s 75th anniversary commemorative flag April 22. Directors, members and employees gathered for a flag-raising ceremony in honor of the special event.

men became serious about the electrification of rural northeast Mississippi.

Men such as W.G. Evans of Columbus, L.L. Martin of Macon, R.L. Carpenter

Storms rip through Noxubee County Residents of Noxubee County are picking up the pieces after a series of storms swept through the area April 6. 4-County Electric Power Association responded to find 11 broken poles, wire down, and farms, homes and businesses damaged. The storms hit about 9 p.m. April 6. Power was restored to all who could receive it by noon the next day. “Our crews did an outstanding job of restoration,” said Anthony Miller, manager of operations. At the height of the storms, about 1,880 4-County members, most of them in Noxubee County, were left in the dark. Pictured here is some of the damage crews encountered in Noxubee County.

of Starkville and Henry Ivy of West Point helped spearhead this effort. With the help of Congressman John Rankin of Tupelo, a grant from the Works Project Administration (WPA) was obtained. The initial funding for 4-County included a loan from the Rural Electrification Administration (now known as the Rural Utilities Service) and a grant from WPA. With the funding, 4-County became a reality Dec. 10, 1937. The cooperative became a distributor of Tennessee Valley Authority power and, on July 25, 1939, power was available to energize 700 miles of line to serve 1,224 consumer/members. Today, 4-County serves over 47,000 members in parts of nine counties: Lowndes, Noxubee, Clay, Oktibbeha, Monroe, Choctaw, Webster, Winston and Chickasaw.


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Chelsea Rick Miss Mississippi

Continued from page 5

Jackson, Rick has met and made many appearances on behalf of veterans. Recently she was featured in the Zippity Doo Dah parade in Jackson, which organizers dubbed the first welcome-home reception for Vietnam veterans statewide. “It was incredibly moving, going down the parade route with all the kids waving their flags. It was really cool to be a part of the first official welcome-home specially for Vietnam veterans. It is long overdue. I’ve seen that wall,” she said, referring to the memorial in Washington. Visits to Blair E. Batson Children’s Hospital, in Jackson, are a must for every Miss Mississippi, including Rick, who was a Batson volunteer while a pre-med student at Millsaps. Her relationship with the hospital has benefitted her as much as the young patients, she said. “I think I’ve gained an understanding of what it’s like for them as they deal with their medical problems. And to be able to go back there as Miss Mississippi has been really wonderful.” Her crown is a sure-fire conversation starter with the little girls. “They love it, but I tell them that they don’t have to have a crown to be a princess. They have an invisible crown on all the time. I really have enjoyed that,” Rick said. With the next Miss Mississippi pageant just over the horizon, Rick is savoring the last two months of her reign while looking to resume her medical school studies. She believes her experience as Miss Mississippi will make her a better physician. “I’m excited to use what I’ve gained for that purpose because I believe that’s what God has called me to do—to help people have a better quality of life through the medicine I practice.” Reflecting on her long journey to become Miss Mississippi, Rick credits the influences and generosity of many people, including teachers, professors and even her peers in the Youth Leadership program. “Those differences that people make are not overlooked. They’re meaningful and they’re helping shape the future of Mississippi,” she said. Sponsors and donors helped with the expenses of competing in five Miss Mississippi pageants.

Rick poses with a Marine during Military Appreciation Day at a University of Mississippi football game. Rick sang “God Bless America” at the event.

Above all, she credits her mother. “She instilled all the values in me and told me I could be whatever I wanted to be. I would never have believed it on my own.” Was her experience as Miss Mississippi worth the years of effort and expense? “Emphatically, yes. It was worth every sacrifice I made because the whole program is an opportunity to make yourself into the best person you can be. And that’s really the whole point. It’s not to compare yourself with someone else but to make yourself into the best person you can be. That will always be a benefit to you.” Rick believes in the ability of the Miss Mississippi program to change young women’s lives for the better, and she plans to give back to the program as a future volunteer. As she sees it, the program’s benefits will continue for her even after she relinquishes her title in July. “I’ll have to make sure it’s a stepping stone to other things and not an end for me, so I can continue to serve. “But somebody told me the carriage will turn back into a pumpkin on July 12,” she said laughing.

Co-op leadership program helped set Rick on path to crown Chelsea Rick said she was “humbled” to speak at the 2014 Electric Power Associations of Mississippi Youth Leadership Workshop, Feb. 26-28 in Jackson. “It’s by far one of the most meaningful things I’ve done during my whole year as Miss Mississippi, and I’ve done some cool things,” she said. What was so special about speaking to a gathering of 76 high school juniors from across the state? Seven years ago, Rick herself was seated in that audience, listening to Gov. Haley Barbour define the characteristics of leadership. “For anyone to think I’m qualified to give that speech to them made me feel very humbled and blessed. And I enjoyed it so much because I knew those kids would listen and heed advice and take it to heart. When I was sitting in their seat, I definitely did.” Rick said the Youth Leadership program, comprising a three-day workshop and week-long Youth Tour of Washington, D.C., marked a turning point in her life. The benefits began with the competitive interview process at Tombigbee Electric Power Association, the local sponsor. “That was the first interview I had ever had like that, and that was exactly like my college interviews were to get big scholarships,” she said. She credited the program for helping her develop confidence and leadership ability, important attributes for a future Miss Mississippi competitor. “I wanted to be a service-oriented leader and I was looking for insight into how to do that. That program was the first and main thing that did that for me. Even to this day, it was the most opportunity I’ve ever been given,” Rick said. “It set the tone for how I handle myself as Miss Mississippi,” she added. Spending time with students she regarded highly was a valuable and Chelsea Rick meets Sen. Trent Lott in 2007 while touring the U.S. enjoyable aspect of Capitol as part of the Youth Tour’s Capitol Hill Day. Rick’s Youth Leadership experience. “They were all driven and academically involved. It was really wonderful to have some intellectually stimulating conversations with people my own age. [They] brought out the best in me and held me to a higher standard, and encouraged me to not give up on my goals.” As Miss Mississippi, Rick encourages students to use their own talents and skills to succeed, and to avoid comparisons with others. “That was a huge message I learned at the Electric Power Associations Youth Tour,” she said.


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Make room for annual flowering vinca ith the chance of any more spring freezes getting lower by the day, the typical home gardener is out looking for plants for when the summer temperatures start to rise. Annual flowering vinca is one that really brightens up our Mississippi summer landscapes. Annual flowering vinca has attractive foliage and gorgeous flowers. The foliage is a glossy, Southern dark green and Gardening has a prominent rib in the middle by Dr. Gary Bachman of the leaf. This coloration makes for a fantastic background to show off its purple, red, pink and white flowers. In 2007, the Titan series was selected as a Mississippi Medallion Winner, and these plants have lived up to that designation. Titan has an upright growth habit, reaching 16 inches tall and 12 inches wide. Its flowers are bigger than those of other annual vincas. This series has 11 flower colors, including apricot, dark red, pink, white, blush and lavender. In 2012, All-America Selections introduced the Jams ‘N’ Jellies vinca, whose flowers are a velvety, deep, dark purple. The nearly black flowers have a bright white eye. These plants have performed very well in the Mississippi State

W

University trial gardens in Poplarville and Crystal Springs. When I started using flowering vincas in my landscape many years ago, I liked their clumping growth habit but thought they seemed a little too tall. I wanted low-growing, spreading growth that would act as a colorful ground cover or as a flowering spiller plant in hanging baskets. It seemed that the breeders read my mind when the Mediterranean series was introduced. This is a spreading type in colors of dark red, peach, strawberry and hot rose. I really appreciate the fact that these plants only get 6 inches tall but spread to 30 inches wide. The Nirvana Cascade flowering vinca is a trailing variety that I have been amazed with and growing for the past couple of years. The flowers are similar in size to the Titan series, and their flower petals overlap, creating a very full-looking bloom. The color selection is typical of flowering vinca with solid red, violet and white colors. Cascade Pink Blush has pastel pink petals and a dark eye, while Cascade Pink Splash has light-pink petals with a burst of flamboyant dark pink in the center. Vincas always flower and grow best when planted in the full sun in raised landscape beds. Raised beds provide optimum soil drainage, which is important because the flowering vinca develops root rot problems when it has “wet feet.” Wait to plant your vinca when landscape soil temperatures have increased. Planting in cool soil also

Vinca Mediterranean Hot Rose has a low-growing, spreading growth habit that makes it ideal for hanging baskets or a colorful ground cover. Photo: MSU Extension Service/Gary Bachman

encourages root rot problems. These plants are heavy feeders, so be sure to incorporate a quality, slowrelease fertilizer at planting. Feed monthly with a water soluble 20-20-20 or 20-10-20 fertilizer to keep the flowers blooming. Annual flowering vincas are drought tolerant once established, but try to maintain consistent soil moisture. Always be ready to provide supplemental water during the summer. Drip irrigation is a great asset during dry periods. The ability of annual flowering vincas to tolerate hot and dry conditions makes

these plants good choices for container plantings. In hanging baskets, try vincas with a spreading growth habit to spill over the basket edge. When growing in containers, always use a quality, peat-based potting media that is well drained and will maintain adequate moisture. Also, be sure to feed weekly with a water-soluble fertilizer to keep the plants performing at their peak. Dr. Gary Bachman is MSU horticulturist at the Coastal Research and Extension Center in Biloxi.

Get patriotic for our next ‘Picture This’ For our next “Picture This” reader photo feature, we are looking for photos on the theme “Patriotism, Mississippi Style.” Submissions must be emailed or postmarked by June 10. Selected photos will appear in the July issue of Today in Mississippi. Photographers whose photos are selected for publication are eligible for a $200 cash prize, to be awarded in a random drawing each December.

 Submission requirements • Submit as many photos as you like, but select only your best work. • Photos must relate to the given theme. • Photos must be the original work of an amateur photographer (of any age).

• Photos must be in sharp focus. • Digital photos must be high-resolution JPG files. Please do not use photo-editing software to alter colors or tones. (We prefer to do it ourselves, if necessary, according to our printer’s standards.) • Photos must be accompanied by identifying information: photographer’s name, address, phone and electric power association (if applicable). Include the name(s) of any recognizable people, places and pets in the picture. Feel free to add comments or explanatory notes. • Prints will be returned if accompanied by a selfaddressed, stamped envelope. We cannot, however, guarantee their safe return through the mail. 

How to submit Mail prints to Picture This, Today in Mississippi, P.O.

Box 3300, Ridgeland, MS 39158-3300. Attach digital photos to an email message, including the required identifying information, and send to news@epaofms.com. If submitting more than one photo, please attach all photos to only one email message, if possible. Or, mail a photo CD to Picture This, Today in Mississippi, P.O. Box 3300, Ridgeland, MS 39158-3300. For more information contact Debbie Stringer, editor: news@epaofms.com


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Tiramisu

mississippi

Cooks

Fat-free pound cake 2 cups low-fat milk 1 cup strong coffee 1 (8-oz.) pkg. light cream cheese, softened

1 large pkg. sugar-free instant vanilla pudding 2 cups fat-free non-dairy whipped topping, thawed Cocoa, for garnish

Cut pound cake into 1/2-inch slices; cut slices in half. Line bottom of 8-inch square dish with cake. Mix 1/2 cup of the milk and 1/2 cup of the coffee; pour over cake. Beat cream cheese in a large bowl until smooth. Gradually beat in remaining milk until smooth. Add pudding mix and remaining coffee. Beat on low until well mixed. Stir in whipped topping. Spoon over cake. Refrigerate 3 hours. Garnish with sprinkle of cocoa. Makes 8 servings. Diabetic exchanges: 1 starch, 1 fat.

FEATURED COOKBOOK:

Crawfish Bread

‘Eat Smart Gulf Coast’ A cookbook in the works at Gulf Coast Health Educators offers 300 recipes that are healthy, low cost and delicious. You don’t have to sacrifice taste for better health; you can have both with the dishes in “Eat Smart Gulf Coast.” Gulf Coast Health Educators, based in Pass Christian, is a nonprofit organization that seeks to empower people to change their lifestyles to reduce health risks. Cookbook proceeds will support the organization’s diabetes, heart health and weight management programs offered in Hancock, Harrison and Jackson counties. “Eat Smart Gulf Coast” is set for publication in the fall. For more information, call 228-860-7530 or visit: gche-ms.org

Pineapple Fluff 2 (20-oz.) cans crushed pineapple 2 Tbsp. lemon juice 1 Tbsp. grated lemon rind 2 Tbsp. lime juice

1/3 cup stevia* 1 (8-oz.) carton non-dairy whipped topping, thawed

Drain pineapple, reserving 2 tablespoons of juice. Combine pineapple, reserved pineapple juice, lemon juice, lemon rind, lime juice and stevia in a blender. Cover and blend until smooth. Pour into 2 (1-quart) plastic freezer bags. Storing bags flat, freeze 2 hours, or until slushy. In a large bowl, stir pineapple slush gently into whipped topping until slightly blended. Return to freezer until completely frozen, about 2 hours, and serve. * Stevia is a no-calorie sweetener made from an herb.

Whole-Grain Buttermilk Biscuits 1 cup whole-wheat flour 3/4 cup all-purpose flour, plus extra for kneading 3 Tbsp. wheat germ 2 tsp. baking powder 1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp salt 3 Tbsp. chilled butter, cut into small pieces 1 cup buttermilk (or low-fat milk plus 1 tsp. lemon juice)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large bowl, combine the flours, wheat germ, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the butter to the flour mixture. With a fork, cut the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add buttermilk and stir just until a moist dough forms. Don't overmix. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate 30 minutes. Turn the dough out onto a generously floured work surface and, with floured hands, knead gently until smooth and manageable. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough into a rectangle shape about 1/2-inch thick. Using a 2 1/2-inch round biscuit cutter, or a drinking glass dipped in flour, cut out biscuits. Cut close together for a minimum of scraps. Gather the scraps and roll out to make additional biscuits. Place biscuits about 1 inch apart on an ungreased non-stick baking sheet. Bake until the biscuits rise to twice their unbaked height and are lightly golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Serve hot. Makes 16 biscuits.

3 green onions, finely chopped 2 Tbsp. low-fat margarine 1 lb. cooked crawfish tails, roughly chopped

1 cup low-fat Mozzarella cheese 1/2 cup low-fat mayonnaise 1 loaf French bread

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a skillet over medium heat, saute green onions in margarine; add crawfish tails. When onions are soft and crawfish is heated through, remove from heat. In a medium bowl, blend cheese and mayonnaise with a spatula. Add sauteed crawfish and onions. Cut the bread into 1-inch slices; spread 1 to 2 tablespoons of the crawfish mixture onto each slice. Alternatively, cut the bread lengthwise and spread half the crawfish mixture onto each side. Bake 15 minutes, or until bread is lightly toasted.

Swiss Chard and Spinach Frittata 1 Tbsp. olive oil, divided 2 garlic cloves, minced 1 onion, minced 8 cups Swiss chard and/or spinach, stems removed and roughly chopped 2 eggs or 1/2 cup egg substitute 4 egg whites

1/4 cup low-fat or fat-free cottage cheese 1 tsp. dried oregano 1/2 tsp. dried thyme Pinch of black pepper Pinch of red pepper flakes, crushed (optional)

Heat 2 teaspoons of the oil in a large oven-proof skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and onions, and saute 30 seconds. Add the greens. Using tongs, turn the greens and cook about 7 minutes, making sure not to burn the garlic. Cook until the leaves are wilted and tender. Drain any excess liquid and turn the greens onto a plate or bowl; set aside. Wipe the skillet clean. Preheat the oven to broil and set the rack at least 6 inches from the heat source. Combine the eggs, egg whites, cottage cheese, oregano, thyme and red pepper flakes in a blender or food processor and process 30 seconds. Heat the remaining oil in the skillet over medium heat. Add greens, spreading them evenly in the pan. Pour egg mixture over the greens and cook undisturbed 4 to 5 minutes. With a spatula, lift edges of the eggs about every minute to allow the uncooked egg to flow to the bottom. When the eggs are almost set but the center is a bit runny, place the pan under the broiler and broil 1 to 3 minutes, or until eggs are set and top is golden. Cut into wedges and sprinkle with peppers to serve. Serves 8.

Dijon Lime Shrimp 1 medium red onion, diced 1/2 cup fresh lime juice, plus lime zest for garnish 2 Tbsp. capers 2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard 1/2 tsp. hot sauce

1 cup water 1/2 cup rice vinegar 3 garlic cloves 1 bay leaf 1 lb. shrimp, peeled and deveined

In a shallow baking dish, combine the onion, lime juice, capers, mustard and hot sauce. Set aside. In a large saucepan, add the water, vinegar, garlic cloves and bay leaf. Bring to a boil and add shrimp. Cook, stirring constantly. Drain. Place the shrimp in a shallow dish containing the onion mixture. Stir to mix well. Cover and refrigerate until well chilled. Garnish each with lime zest. Serve cold. Serves 4 to 6.


May 2014

By Nancy Jo Maples Dudie Burger fans will get a taste of the good ole days when Tupelo celebrates its annual Dudie Burger Festival on Saturday, May 3. The festival’s honored sandwich is a grilled burger made of meat, flour and water served on a bun with mustard and pickles. It was sold at one of Tupelo’s first carhop restaurants, Dudie’s Diner. A local sensation for 39 years, the famous burger originally sold for 10 cents. This year’s festival will offer Dudie Combos for $5 that include a burger, chips and Moonpie. The Moonpie was the top-selling dessert at the diner when it was in operation. The festival opens at 10 a.m. and closes at 4 p.m. Admission is free of charge. Events will include a burger eating contest, music, name-that-tune competition, children’s activities and door prizes. The Dudie Burger Festival, which began in 2003, is set each year on the first Saturday in May at the Oren Dunn Museum in Tupelo’s Ballard Park, home to the original Dudie’s Diner streetcar. This year’s festival goers will be able to tour the interior of the original diner, which has been recently refurbished. The diner is a former Memphis streetcar that Truman “Dudie” Christian brought to Tupelo in 1947 and convert-

At Dudie’s Diner, top, patrons paid as little as 10 cents for a patty made of meat, flour and water served on a bun with mustard and pickles. Dudie Burger Festival goers, above, can tour the renovated diner on the grounds of Tupelo’s Oren Dunn Museum. Jerry Duckett, right, museum operations manager, grills Dudie burgers. Photos courtesy of Oren Dunn Museum

ed into a diner. Christian’s economical burger became famous because of its affordable price and rich taste. Late Mississippi country music artist Gene Simmons even wrote a song about it in which he said “I’ve been all ‘cross this country from California to Carolina, but the best meal I ever had was down at Dudie’s Diner.” The 6-foot-wide trolley operated as a diner until 1986 and was donated in 1990 to the museum. The popularity of national chain burger restaurants forced the local diner’s closure. It was donated to the Oren Dunn Museum because that facility serves as a living history and

local heritage center with a concentration on northeastern Mississippi history and artifacts. Other items on display at the museum include the Lee County Book Mobile (one of the nation’s first portable libraries), a working 1800s era blacksmith shop, a 19th century church and school, and a dog-trot house dating to 1870. Also for viewing are a sawmill, sorghum mill and a train caboose used on the St. Louis/San Francisco Railroad through Tupelo. The museum was founded in 1984 by a history buff and storyteller, the late



Today in Mississippi



15

Oren F. Dunn, as a means to chronicle the region’s history and community development. Other events at the museum include the Dogtrot Rockabilly Festival on Oct. 18, the Holiday Open House and Lighting of the Museum on Dec. 1, and Living History Days on Oct. 10 and 24. Museum hours are Tuesdays through Fridays 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. and Saturdays 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. Regular admission is $3 for adults, $2 for senior citizens, $1.50 for children ages 3-12. Special rates are available for groups and tours are available by appointment. For more information contact the museum at 662-841-6438. The address is 689 Rutherford Road, Tupelo, MS 38801. Writer Nancy Jo Maples can be reached at 188 Ernest Pipkins Road, Lucedale, MS 39452 and: nancyjomaples@aol.com


16





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18

I

Today in Mississippi

I

May 2014

Events MISSISSIPPI

MEMORIAL DAY is MAY 26

Want more than 400,000 readers to know about your event? Submit it at least two months prior to the event date. Submissions must include a phone number with area code for publication. Mail to Mississippi Events, Today in Mississippi, P.O. Box 3300, Ridgeland, MS 39158-3300; fax to 601-605-8601; or email to news@epaofms.com. Events of statewide interest will be published free of charge as space allows. Since events are subject to change, we strongly recommend confirming dates and times before traveling. For more events, go to www.visitmississippi.org.

Lucedale Spring Farmers Market, Saturdays through July 26, Lucedale. Flowers, shrubs, vegetables, fruits, meats, preserves. Sunup until. Cox Street, Courthouse Square. Details: 601-947-2755, 601-947-2082. Dulcimer Day, May 3, Tupelo. North Miss. Dulcimer Association teaches dulcimer history, craftsmanship, music; 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. Free. Natchez Trace Parkway Visitor Center. Details: 662-680-4027, 800-305-7417; nps.gov/nat Annual Springfest, May 3, Monticello. Flea market, gospel singing, auction, children’s games and jumpers, more. Divide Memorial Methodist Church, Divide community. Details: 601-431-9317. Tylertown Railroad & Transportation Museum Opening, May 9, Tylertown. Highlights role of railroad and other transportation methods in area growth. Open Tuesdays - Saturdays. Old Depot building. 14th Annual Bluegrass on the Creek, May 15-17, Tylertown. Live music; RV hookups available. Admisison. Southwest Events Center. Details: 225-634-7886, 225-241-5521. US 11 Antique Alley Yard Sale, May 15-18, Meridian. Sales extending 502 miles along US 11 from Meridian to Bristol, Va. Details: 601917-3727. Fish Fry and Gospel Singing for Missions, May 17, Olive Branch. Fish fry starts 5 p.m.; gospel singing 6 p.m. First Baptist Church of Olive Branch. Details: 662-895-5481; fbcob.org Dixon Day, May 17, Philadelphia. Begins 10 a.m. Picnic-style lunch. Neshoba County Fairgrounds. Details: 601-656-3795. Great Big Yam Potatoes Old-Time Music Gathering and Fiddle Contest, May 17, Washington. Live fiddle and string band performances on outdoor stage, jam session, fiddling contest for all ages, evening dance. Free admission; contest entry fee. Historic Jefferson College. Details: 601-442-2901. Bluegrass Picking on the Porch, May 17, Crystal Springs. Live music featuring Alan

Sibley & The Magnolia Ramblers; 1 p.m. until. Admission. Bridges Old Home Place, 2081 Old Hwy. 27. Details: 601-892-1473; ehb2202@tx.rr.com Big Pop Gun Show, May 17-18, Pascagoula. Jackson County Fairgrounds. Details: 601-4984235; bigpopfireworks.com ShowFest, May 17-18, Southaven. More than 700 entrants in custom truck/car/motorcycle show; automotive vendors. Benefits Miss. Burn Association. Admission. Snowden Grove. showfest.com Lower Delta Talks, May 20, Rolling Fork. Cristie Upshaw Travis presents “Land Between the Levees: Natural Photography of the Mississippi Delta”; 6:30 p.m. Sharkey-Issaquena County Library. Details: 662-873-4076. Red Hills Festival, May 24, Louisville. Band/set up 7 p.m. Friday. Carnival, arts/crafts, food, antique show/sale, 5K run, battle of the bands, more. Free admission. Downtown. Details: 662-773-3921. Magnolia Fest 5K and Fun Run, May 24, Horn Lake. Registration at 7:30 a.m.; 5K begins 8:30 a.m. Entry fee. Latimer Lakes Park. Details: 662-393-9897; info@hornlakechamber.com Pioneer Day, May 24, Tupelo. Living history demonstrations; 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. Free. Natchez Trace Parkway Visitor Center. Details: 662-680-4027, 800-305-7417; nps.gov/natr Hattiesburg Zoo’s Birthday Bash, May 24, Hattiesburg. Includes unveiling of Asbury Discovery Center; 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Details: HattiesburgZoo.com Bay Fest, May 29-31, Bay Springs. Nightly entertainment, carnival rides, arts/crafts, food, contests, car show, mule pull. Details: 601764-4112. American Kennel Club Dog Show, May 29 June 1, Biloxi. AKC-registered dogs vie for championship points and Best in Show honors. Hosted by the Pelican Cluster of south La. Free. Miss. Coast Coliseum. Details: 504-427-4142.

Magnolia State Fiber Festival, May 30-31, Vicksburg. Classes in knitting, spinning, weaving, tatting, more. Yarn, fiber, equipment vendors. Free. Lady Luck Casino Arena. Details: msff.net George County Relay For Life, May 30, Lucedale. George County High School; 6 p.m. 1 a.m. Details: 601-508-7508. 16th Annual Deep Delta Festival, May 31, Rolling Fork. Food, crafts, music, more; 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. Sharkey County Courthouse Square. Details: 662-873-2814. Bay Fest Fun Run 2014, May 31, Bay Springs. Southern Cruisers Car Club open car, truck and rod show; awards to top 100 vehicles. Entry fee. City Park. Details: 601-4254865. Hog Wild BBQ Cook Off and Family Festival, May 31, Brookhaven. Food, vendors, music, kids’ entertainment, 5K walk, archery shoot, more. Free admission. Downtown. Details: 601-757-1772; HogWildFestival.org Crawfish Music Festival, May 31, Olive Branch. Boiled crawfish, gumbo cook-off, kids’ area, arts/crafts, entertainment. Admission. Old Towne. Details: southbranchlionsclub@gmail.com “Stand Up!”: Mississippi Freedom Summer of 1964, June 2 - October, Jackson. Exhibit of photographs, artifacts, documents and film commemorating 50th anniversary of Freedom Summer. Opening lecture by Bob Moses. William F. Winter Archives and History Building. Details: 601-576-6850. Tupelo Elvis Festival, June 5-8, Tupelo. Live music, Elvis tribute artist contest, more. BancorpSouth Arena. Details: 662-841-6598; tupeloelvisfestival.com Mississippi Gulf Coast Homeschool Used Book Sale and Expo, June 6-7, Gulfport. Vendors with homeschool materials, guest speakers, workshops; opens 10 a.m. Free admission. First Assembly of God Gulfport. Details: 228-623-1758; msusedbooksale.blogspot.com Arts, Beats and Eats Festival, June 7, Ashland. Honors the blues music of Ashland native Willie “Pop” Mitchell with blues/R&B, kids’ activities, food. Benefits historical society. Benton County Courthouse. Details: 662671-5563; Facebook. Pine Tree Music Fest, June 7, Ackerman. Arts/crafts, 5K run/walk, antique car show, music, Kids’ World, more. Downtown. Details: 662-285-3778; pinetreemusicfest.com Festival South, June 7-21, Hattiesburg. Multi-genre arts festival with music, dance, art, theatre. Featuring Marty Stuart, Mac McAnally, Wicked Divas. Details: festivalsouth.org

Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall, June 11-16, Southaven. Three-fifths scale replica wall. Opening ceremony 7 p.m. June 11. Landers Center. Details: 901-496-6739; dmoore1776@aol.com Covington County MHV Blueberry Tasting Tea, June 12, Collins. Sample blueberry cakes, pie, bread, salads, drinks, and receive a recipe book; 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. Admission. Collins Fire Station. Details: 601-765-8252. Second Annual Chickasaw County Instrumental Music Festival, June 13-14, Houston. Begins 5 p.m. Friday. Joe Brigance Park. Details: 206-426-9817; ccimfinfo@gmail.com Sesquicentennial of the Battles of Brice’s Crossroads and Tupelo/Harrisburg, June 13-15, Baldwyn. Battle reenactments, camps, children’s Discovery Day, calvary/infantry parade, music, Grand Ball. Details: 662-3653969; bcr.edwina@gmail.com finalstands150th.com Second Annual Juneteenth Family Fun Festival, June 14, Horn Lake. Live blues and gospel music, Corvette/vintage car show, kids’ activities, Greek step show, arts/crafts, food. Latimer Lakes Park. Details: 901-481-3968; dcaahs.com USA International Ballet Competition, June 14-29, Jackson. Classical ballet dance performances, awards gala. Admission. Thalia Mara Hall. Details: 601-973-9249; usaibc.com My First String Camp at Carey, June 16-20, Hattiesburg. Instruction in Suzuki and Elementary strings for first- through sixthgraders; 9 a.m. - noon. No experience necessary. Bring or rent instrument. Admission. William Carey University School of Music. Details: 414-737-4620, 601-318-6175; pardokolesch@hotmail.com

SATURDAY, MAY 17 At MCMILLAN PARK

Arts & Crafts • Heart of MS 5k Run/Walk • Kids Fun Zone Club 66 Antique Car Show Antique Tractor Show Tractor Pull • Fishing Rodeo for more info call Leake Chamber of Commerce 601-267-9231 www.leakems.com


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$2499999 $

44", 13 DRAWER INDUSTRIAL QUALITY ROLLER CABINET

LOT NO. 68784 69387 62270 • 2633 lb. Capacity • Weighs 245 lbs. • Super High Gloss Finish!

RAPID PUMP M 1.5 TON ALUMINU68053 Item CK JA G RACIN shown 99 $ 99

REG. PRICE $11.99

R ! PE ON SU UP SAVE $ 150 CO

– Car Craft Magazine

LIMIT 5 - Good at our stores, HarborFreight.com or by calling 800-423-2567. Cannot be used with other discount or coupon or prior purchases after 30 days from original purchase with original receipt. Offer good while supplies last. Non-transferable. Original coupon must be presented. Valid through 9/5/14. Limit one coupon per customer per day.

6 $59

$ 99 SAVE 41%

"We Are Impressed With the Quality... The Price is Incredible"

REG. PRICE $649.99

LIMIT 4 - Good at our stores, HarborFreight.com or by calling 800-423-2567. Cannot be used with other discount or coupon or prior purchases after 30 days from original purchase with original receipt. Offer good while supplies last. Non-transferable. Original coupon must be presented. Valid through 9/5/14. Limit one coupon per customer per day.

R ! PE ON SU UP CO

NEW!

REG. PRICE $79.99

LIMIT 5 - Good at our stores, HarborFreight.com or by calling 800-423-2567. Cannot be used with other discount or coupon or prior purchases after 30 days from original purchase with original receipt. Offer good while supplies last. Non-transferable. Original coupon must be presented. Valid through 9/5/14. Limit one coupon per customer per day.

VALUE

Customers and Experts Agree Harbor Freight WINS in QUALITY and PRICE 4x4 Without Breaking the Bank" SAVE –your 4 Wheel Drive SUV Magazine $120 9000 LB. ELECTRIC WINCH

19

LOT NO. 95275 60637/69486/61615

Item 95275 shown

NOBODY BEATS OUR QUALITY, SERVICE AND PRICE!

R ! PE ON SU UP CO



3 GALLON, 100 PSI OILLESS PANCAKE AIR COMPRESSOR

SUPER COUPON!

FREE 20%

LIMIT 1 - Save 20% on any one item purchased at our stores or HarborFreight.com or by calling 800-4232567. *Cannot be used with other discount, coupon, gift cards, Inside Track Club membership, extended service plans or on any of the following: compressors, generators, tool storage or carts, welders, floor jacks, Towable Ride-On Trencher (Item 65162), open box items, in-store event or parking lot sale items. Not valid on prior purchases after 30 days from original purchase date with original receipt. Non-transferable. Original coupon must be presented. Valid through 9/5/14. Limit one coupon per customer per day.

Today in Mississippi

R ! PE ON SU UP CO

LIFETIME WARRANTY

QUALITY TOOLS AT RIDICULOUSLY LOW PRICES



Item 67090 shown

$

LIMIT 5 - Good at our stores, HarborFreight.com or by calling 800-423-2567. Cannot be used with other discount or coupon or prior purchases after 30 days from original purchase with original receipt. Offer good while supplies last. Non-transferable. Original coupon must be presented. Valid through 9/5/14. Limit one coupon per customer per day.

R ! PE ON SU UP CO

SUPER-WIDE TRI-FOLD ALUMINUM LOADING RAMP

SAVE $70

$89

99

$

11999

REG. PRICE $149.99

800-423-2567. Cannot ht.com or by calling al our stores, HarborFreig prior purchases after 30 days from origin al LIMIT 5 - Good at nt or coupon or Non-transferable. Origin last. es suppli while be used with other discou receipt. Offer good n per customer per day. al coupo origin one with Limit ase . purch ted. Valid through 9/5/14 coupon must be presen

LOT NO. 90018 69595/60334 Item 90018 shown

7999

REG. PRICE $149.99 • 1500 lb. Capacity

LIMIT 3 - Good at our stores, HarborFreight.com or by calling 800-423-2567. Cannot be used with other discount or coupon or prior purchases after 30 days from original purchase with original receipt. Offer good while supplies last. Non-transferable. Original coupon must be presented. Valid through 9/5/14. Limit one coupon per customer per day.

If You Buy Tools Anywhere Else, You're Throwing Your Money Away



Today in Mississippi 4 County May 2014