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News for members of Singing River Electric Power Association

Springtime! page 18

Periodical postage (ISSN 1052 2433)

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Food hub connects farmers with consumers

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Rials Creek cooks share favorite recipes

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Get a taste of the Mississippi Seafood Trail


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My appreciation extends to all electric co-op folks merica’s electric cooperatives have designated the second Monday of April as National Lineman Appreciation Day. On April 11, electric power associations throughout Mississippi will salute their own linemen—the hard-working employees who put their lives on the line every day to keep electricity working for you. I am proud to salute all electric utility linemen for the services they perform and for their critical work as first responders during natural disasters. I also want to point out that all electric power association employees, regardless of job title, deserve recognition for keeping your electric service reliable and efficient. I am equally in awe of their dedication, competence and dependability. When you walk into a local electric power association office or pull up to its drive-through window, you are greeted by a cashier whose top priority at that moment is to give you personal attention and service. Cashiers make sure our members’ payments are credited promptly and accurately to their accounts. They make the job look easy, but this is demanding work that often requires handling several tasks and interruptions at once. Working behind the scenes are employees responsible for keeping billing procedures on track. Like the cashiers, billing clerks are a reliable and trustworthy bunch who take great pride in the accuracy of their work. Another employee you may never meet on the job is the warehouse worker. The job title may vary, but every electric power association needs someone to manage a huge inventory of materials, equipment and tools. The warehouse worker’s efforts go a long way toward improving the efficiency and speed of daily operations, and especially disaster recovery work. An electric power association warehouse must be sufficiently stocked with thousands of ready-to-use items, from washers and bolts to transformers and

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On the cover Our Picture This feature includes photos by these readers (from top): • Bill Williams, Yazoo City; Yazoo Valley Electric member • Jessica Fornea, Vancleave; Singing River Electric member • Lisa Wilhelm, Vancleave; Singing River Electric member • Michele Smith, New Albany; Pontotoc Electric member See more on pages 18-19.

utility poles. Before heading out to a job site, line crews compile a list of the specific materials and tools they’ll need for the tasks at hand; the warehouse worker makes sure they get it. It’s easy to see how a competent warehouse worker contributes to smooth, efficient and speedy line My Opinion work. Michael Callahan These are just a few of Executive Vice President/CEO the many tasks employees Electric Power Associations carry out on a routine day of Mississippi at your electric power association. But when an ice storm, hurricane or tornado wipes out miles of power lines, all electric power association office employees pitch in to support the emergency power restoration work. In accordance with the electric power association’s emergency plan, employees take on extraordinary duties vital to a safe, efficient and fast power restoration effort. Employees may be called upon to help prepare meals for linemen working day and night to rebuild power lines. They might coordinate accommodations for additional crews, handle communications with the media, assist members on the phone or in the office, manage social media updates and perform countless other tasks. In a long-term crisis like Katrina, employees even take care of the linemen’s laundry. They do whatever it takes to keep the emergency crews safe and well fed—and members informed of their progress. On National Lineman’s Day, please take a moment to thank a lineman for the work he does, and all the other employees who contribute every day to the high quality of your electric service.

Today in Mississippi OFFICERS Keith Hurt - President Tim Smith - First Vice President Barry Rowland - Second Vice President Randy Smith - Secretary/Treasurer

EDITORIAL STAFF Michael Callahan - CEO Ron Stewart - Sr. VP, 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

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ON FACEBOOK Vol. 69 No. 4 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: 472,985 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

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Our Homeplace

Three favorite colors of springtime—yellow, purple and green—converge in Melissa Campbell’s photo of a tiger swallowtail butterfly. Campbell lives in Pontotoc, where she is a member of Pontotoc Electric Power Association. Enjoy more colors of spring on pages 18-19.

Mississippi is a place where I will always stay because I had lived here all my life. The reason I love it so much is that all my family lives here and so do all my friends. I live in a place where it is quiet day and night. I love it in Mississippi. It is beautiful. — Orlandria Smith, age 12, Smithville Great memories, growing up with family in a beautiful place. I feel blessed to live here. Never left and never will. Totally dedicated to the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Enjoying the breeze blowing in off the water, hearing the waves rushing in to shore, with the seagulls flying above. Sitting outside around a fire, listening to the sounds of the whippoorwill, locust and frogs. Watching the fireflies pass by. Riding down Highway 90 looking at all the beautiful Southern homes overlooking the gulf. The big, beautiful oak trees with moss draping from their limbs. And don’t forget the good food. Wading the waters to throw the mullet net, fishing and shrimping, and oystering. At night, wading the water’s edge with a light to gig flounder and softshell crabs. There’s nothing closer to heaven than being from Mississippi. And what pretty tropical weather, unless, unfortunately, a hurricane rolls in. Oh, the togetherness and the sharing. Everyone pulls together. Family members, friends and acquaintances reaching out to each other physically and emotionally. Together through thick and thin. That’s what we are all about with our Southern hospitality. — Stephanie Penton Hudson, Pass Christian

What’s Mississippi to you? 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 to news@epaofms.com. Please keep your comments brief. Submissions are subject to editing for length and clarity.

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Seeds of Change Jackson-based partnership creates innovative food hub to connect Mississippi farmers with consumers

By Debbie Stringer Agriculture is Mississippi’s top industry, generating some $7.5 billion in annual revenue. Yet Mississippi has the worst food-related problems in the country due to high rates of hunger, obesity and diabetes. And although Mississippi has a climate and natural resources suitable for growing more than 50 food crops, an estimated 90 percent of our food comes from other states. Only $120 million of Mississippi’s annual ag production consists of fruits and vegetables—mostly sweet potatoes. “We have a successful agricultural community that does terrific work producing commodities and exports. There’s just not a lot of food in the process. We create a very limited amount of fruits and vegetables,” said David Watkins Jr., a Jackson native and food entrepreneur. “We have obesity and hunger existing at the same time, so there’s a lot of malnourishment, and people who are getting food are not really getting nutritious food,” Watkins said. Mississippi farmers know how to produce nutritious food, but there has been no system in place for building viable businesses centered on food crop production—until now. Watkins is a partner in Jackson-based Soul City Hospitality, the group of restaurant professionals behind the new Up in Farms Food Hub, a processing and distribution system for Mississippi-grown food crops. The food hub is the first business to emerge from the group’s planned Food Innovation Center. “Our goal is to help farmers make a good, sustainable living by growing food in a way that is accessible and affordable for Mississippians,” Watkins said. The Up in Farms Food Hub’s locally grown foods, carrying the Mississippi Farmed label, will be distributed to grocery stores, restaurants, schools, hotels, hospitals and other markets throughout Mississippi, and eventually the region. Benefitting from a $100,000 grant from USDA and a $315,000 construction grant from the Delta Regional Authority, the food hub recently began its pilot phase at the Old Farmers Market building on West Street in Jackson. Abandoned for years, the historic building is being renovated and equipped to house the food hub.


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“What we’re doing may be unique in the country because we’re building something from the ground up that’s customized to Mississippi.” — David Watkins Jr. “What we’re doing may They appreciate what we are trying to provide.” be unique in the country Farmers tell Sullivan they are looking for a place to because we’re building take their food crops, and they are eager to discuss ways something from the to increase their business volume. ground up that’s cus“The food hub is something they need to have an David Watkins Jr., right, and Terry Sullivan recently launched Up in Farms Food Hub on a trial run. The food hub, set to be tomized to Mississippi, income they can count on,” Sullivan said. fully operational in the fall, is the first phase of a planned Food Innovation Center at the Old Farmers Market in Jackson. and it brings together all Up in Farms is expected employ up to 50 workers these partners,” Watkins when it becomes fully operational in the fall. Employsaid. ment could rise closer to 100 as the project expands Watkins worked four years to lay the groundwork The food hub is the first phase of a Food Innovation with the opening of a processed food facility. for a system that would satisfy the needs of small- to Center to encompass a processed food facility, training medium-size farmers, as well as those who buy their rooms, a product-development kitchen and other relatStimulating job growth in the state with the worst products. ed businesses. jobless rate in the nation is another goal of Soul City’s “We’re taking in the raw product from the field, Farmers can use the center for training and planpartners. Feeding a growing world population in doing the correct cooling of that product, cleaning the ning, and as a forum for interacting with chefs, food decades to come will demand a larger labor force. More product, sorting and grading it, packaging it and getentrepreneurs and the public. workers will be needed for food production and harting it out the door quickly to a retail establishment or “A lot of those conversations aren’t happening now vesting, processing, technology, marketing, entreprean institution,” said Terry Sullivan, food hub manager. because there’s not a centralized location for them to neurship and transportation. Up in Farms organizers The system frees farmers to concentrate on what take place,” Sullivan said. are helping to prepare young Mississippians for these they do best—growing food crops. Up in Farms handles production coordination among farmers, cold storage, documentation, marketing, food safety training and other Want to buy Mississippi-grown foods where you higher, locally grown foods are always a better buy critical aspects of food distribushop? Ask for them! Consumers hold the key to when you consider freshness, flavor and nutrition. tion. ensuring the availability of locally grown foods in • If your grocer does not offer local produce, ask “All of those things compete stores and markets throughout Mississippi. Here’s them to stock it. with farmers’ ability to manage how you can help support food production in Mis- • Shop local farmers markets. Be open to trying and operate their farm, espesissippi: new varieties farmers may offer. cially if you’re a small farmer,” • Buy foods produced by Mississippi farmers when- • Get the kids involved by taking them to farm Watkins said. ever possible. Check labels before you buy to know tours to see where their food comes from and Prior attempts have been where food comes from. Even if the price is a bit meet farmers. Kids are tomorrow’s food buyers. made to develop similar systems in Mississippi, but Watkins believes there was too much emphasis on the “build it and they will come” The University of Mississippi Medical Center, which job opportunities by developing work force training at approach. Up in Farms is more about providing servic- owns the property, is looking to use the center as a the community college level. es customized to the needs Mississippi farmers, based place to help train medical students in patient nutriWith about a quarter of the state’s 5.5 million acres on extensive research and interviews with those farmers. tion. of crop land not in production, Mississippi has plenty “The facility itself is incredibly important but what of room for these additional food crops. we are providing will do things that farmers can’t do on Sullivan brings experience as a regional manager “This is an industry that we could grow for the next their individual farms,” Watkins said, such as access to for a grocery chain in New York, but just as valuable is 30 years and not reach the ceiling on the ability to technology and equipment critical in today’s successful his enthusiasm for the food hub project. Sullivan visits grow food here,” Watkins said. farm operations. farms throughout the state to gain a deeper understandUp in Farms’ potential for making long-term Food hubs exist in various forms across the country, ing of farmers’ needs and earn their trust. Having improvements in the lives of Mississippians motivates but Soul City’s version was designed to be a more uni- grown up on a farm in Winona, Sullivan understands Watkins to work even harder to make it succeed. fied and collaborative system than most. Up in Farms farmers’ passion for farming—and their anxieties. “You realize, yeah, I can get up and do this every works in partnership with a long list of government “I love it. I learn so much every day and that’s moti- day,” he said. agencies, community-development organizations and vation enough, but getting to know the farmers and For more information, visit mississippifarmed.com and other entities to streamline activities and resources, and kicking the dirt with them is fascinating,” he said. upinfarms.com. Farmers can reach Terry Sullivan at 601to identify weak links in the state’s food supply chain. “They are very, very open to what we are doing. 717-2012 or terry@soulcityhospitality.com.

Success depends on consumer demand


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America’s music deeply rooted in the Mississippi Delta o take a look at your car tag and you will see a guitar in the middle of the row of numbers. On a banner above the guitar, it says “Birthplace of America’s Music.” That is more than just a cute marketing slogan. It’s pretty much the truth. And now we have our very own Grammy Museum to help prove it. The Grammy Award is given for outMississippi standing Seen accomplishby Walt Grayson ment in the music industry. Mississippi is an appropriate place for the museum because there are more Grammy Award winners from Mississippi than from the next five closest states to us

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combined, and way more Grammy winners from Mississippi per capita than any other state. The new Grammy Museum Mississippi is the only satellite branch of the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles. It is located in Cleveland adjacent to the Delta State University campus. The location is appropriate for a couple of reasons. For one, Delta State is home of the Delta Music Institute. The institute is a branch of the college in which students can learn every aspect of the music industry, from writing and producing songs and albums to learning all the legal aspects of the industry. The other reason Cleveland is an appropriate place for a Grammy Museum is because it is in the Delta, where pretty much everything we call American music grew from deep roots. It all started from the blues. Now in all honesty, there were blues players everywhere from Savannah to El Paso after the Civil War. But for every single one elsewhere, there were 10 in

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The new Grammy Museum Mississippi, in Cleveland, is now open. Inside are stories of American popular music, born right here in Mississippi. Photo: Walt Grayson

the Delta. Why? There are lots of theories. One of the more logical centers around the relative autonomy plantation workers were given at places like Dockery Plantation, between Cleveland and Ruleville. Saturday night was free time and gatherings ended up in music performances. Over time the blues born in the Delta began to influence other music forms. For instance, Jimmie Rodgers combined blues licks to string band rhythms and invented country music. A little later, musicians combined country with another layer of blues and came up with rock-a-billy and rock-androll. Elvis is the most famous of those performers. Blues went to the city and urbanized into jazz. Big bands emerged from jazz, also a forerunner of rock music. So pretty much anything we hear on the radio today (or the Internet) that is considered American music has roots in blues. And blues was born in the Delta. Perhaps the cradle was Dockery Plantation, east of Cleveland. All that said, there is way more than just blues or just Mississippi music and

musicians featured in the Grammy Museum Mississippi. It is all about the Grammys and all of the people who have won them, all of the types of music they play, who influenced them and whom they have influenced. All of this information is available on touch screens. Plus there are lots of fun interactive activities, from writing a song to playing an instrument to producing a record to hearing what modern music would have sounded like on a Gramophone, an early acoustic record player, from which the Grammy Award derives its name. This is a world-class attraction right in our own backyard. Give yourself a couple of hours to tour it. But allow yourself all day in case you or your kids (who are very welcome and are very much allowed hands-on privileges) get caught up in the music and carried away. 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.


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Uncovering a part of the past E

wonder. Initially built with cotton line, nylon supplanted that fiber before he stopped making nets. And he did this knitting in the house. He would put a nail in one top corner of a door facing and begin this fascinating procedure of knots and knitting. Seems a piece of fishing art in the making was always present in that old house during our growing-up years. I recall it well and can’t help but wonder if that gentle, peaceful, rhythmic swishing of the needle and rustle of countless feet of line by Tony Kinton would hold that same aura of contentment and pleasantness now as it did then. Not only did he make the nets, he made the tools. Needles and blocks were of cedar, if it was available, and the carving left each somewhat pedestrian. But after hundreds of passes with that string’s abrasion on ragged surfaces, these units took on a life of beauty— smooth, shiny, more desirable than before. Not unlike life if we allow it to shape us in a positive fashion rather than negative. Needles held the line; blocks determined the mesh dimensions. Restrictions on mesh size were likely not as stringent then as now. Still, they were legal and built for the purpose of allowing the small perch and such to pass through. It was only the bigger specimens that were targeted. Early on, I remember hoops being made from white oak. Dad would split and strip staves to the proper size, then bend them into a big circle. Later, thin steel rods replaced the white oak. Nets had to be dried before storage. Many were the times that Dad would

Outdoors Today

have the nets staked out in the yard drying and I, as a small boy, would scoot through that Knitting needles and mesh blocks used to make fishing nets. These now reside big throat peacefully on my office desk. Photo: Tony Kinton and imagine myself inside a vehicle designed for still viable. I do know that I regret never instant transport to exotic environs. having learned this wondrous skill he These were grand experiences. practiced so well. That is my loss. One Grand also were those times I went of the last things I encouraged him to do with him to run nets. Seldom was I of as he approached the end was to make any assistance, but I would watch in fas- his great-grandson, my great-nephew, a cination as he wrestled those huge net. Dad declined. He likely needed rest, hoops and seemingly miles of string so I opted to allow the matter to rest as over gunwales of a cypress boat, the well. But without question I can say that heavy load thudding to that boat’s botmy life was enriched because of a utilitom. In actuality these were rather basic tarian product fashioned to perfection by endeavors taking place in familiar surhand with a cedar knitting needle, block roundings, but sentiment places them and string. among those high adventures I have For that I am grateful. been privileged to experience in farTony Kinton has been an active outdoors away locales over the past two decades. writer for 30 years. His newest book, I don’t recall the last net our dad “Rambling Through Pleasant Memories,” is made, nor do I know for certain where now available. Order from Amazon.com or the existent nets now reside—if they are Kinton’s website: www.tonykinton.com.

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ven if bittersweet, the find was serendipitous. We had begun the arduous and somber task of cleaning out our parents’ house. The garage sales had ended, various donations had been accomplished and time had come for that landfill phase. Most of us tend to squirrel away items of little or no value, with that mindset of “I may need that” casting its strange spell. But when dealing with possessions of the Great Depression Generation, that propensity is particularly pronounced. Such was the case with our parents. A second trailer load was ready: decaying lumber, splintered PVC, assorted carpet scraps and dingy rugs, decadesold newspapers, incomplete towel racks, rusted buckets and cracked plastic containers, chairs with no legs. The list was long. Trashing such things was haunting; we recalled when these were a part of the parents’ daily lives. But the harsh truth was that these items held no real value. Just things our folks had put away because “I may need that.” Then my brother-in-law Robert made a discovery. He climbed onto a step stool and scoured a shelf made from a piece of cast-off paneling and set above a thin-metal shower stall our dad had installed. There Robert found a shoe box and recognized the contents. He handed it to my sister Brenda, who then passed it to me. Needles and blocks used to knit fishing nets. From his teen years up until my sister and I left home for college, our dad fished nets. It was not a recreational pursuit so much as a means by which to generate income. Dad had several regular customers, and there were standing orders for Pearl River buffalo and those handsome spotted cats. Dad called the latter appaloosas. One local doctor who stitched our cuts and tended our sore throats was quick to tell anyone who would listen, “I buy my appaloosas from Warren!” The nets our dad made were things of


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Building leaders for 30 years

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Electric cooperatives in Mississippi have been building leaders in the state since 1987. This year marked 30 years for the annual Electric Power Associations of Mississippi Youth Leadership Workshop, held Feb. 24-26 in Jackson. Each year the workshop brings students from schools across the state to the capital city and gives them opportunities to meet with their state legislators, tour the state Capitol, participate in leadership activities and hear words of encouragement from top leaders. “We want these students to leave the workshop knowing that they have the power to make a difference in their school and communities,” said Ron Stewart, coordinator of the statewide

ALCORN COUNTY EPA Hailey Hodum, Corinth Luke Price, Glen * CENTRAL EPA Wallace Bass, Carthage Dylan Carpenter, Carthage * Emily Cloys, Philadelphia Cody Thaggard, Philadelphia

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COAST EPA Mercy Belle Baucum, Carriere Grace Bennett, Long Beach Amy Keith, Diamondhead Natalie King, D’Iberville Tyler Necaise, Bay St. Louis Juan Ramon Riojas, Biloxi DIXIE EPA Trael Hinton, Richton Sam Sumrall, Laurel * Lex Anna Thompson, Petal EAST MISS. EPA Harrison Bass, Meridian Braxton Beech, Meridian

Makinsie Clark, Louisville Asia Eichelberger, Louisville Shelby Gast, Meridian Clark Graham, Louisville Daniel Halfacre, Louisville Cody Hunter, Quitman Madison McElroy, Meridian Jamie Shelby, Collinsville Karleigh Shelton, Meridian Jordan White, Philadelphia 4-COUNTY EPA Georgia Sisson, Maben Reid Stevens, Starkville * Jack VanDevender, Shuqualak * MAGNOLIA EPA Missy Clanton, Brookhaven Haven Johnson, Jayess Lizzie Mooney, Brookhaven NATCHEZ TRACE EPA Taylor Liles, Calhoun City * Harley Nabors, Houston

leadership program. “We provide them with resources and training so they may begin their journey to success now.” The workshop offers these young people an opportunity to interact with other students who share their interest in fulfilling leadership positions and serving their others. Stewart emphasized the program is built around the cooperative philosophy: working together to accomplish life goals. “I am extremely proud of our 2016 participants,” Stewart said. “They are prepared and excited to serve as leaders.” The students earned the expense-paid trip to the workshop in a competitive selection process sponsored by their local electric power association.

NORTH EAST MISS. EPA Kayla Arman, Oxford Abby Arrington, Oxford

PONTOTOC EPA Peyton Johnson, Pontotoc J.A. Staten, Pontotoc

NORTHCENTRAL EPA Mandie Berrocal, Olive Branch Cameron Colleta, Olive Branch Jade Dedman, Southaven Shakali Falkner, Byhalia Gabrielle Harris, Byhalia Marianna Harris, Olive Branch Sara Grace Little, Hernando * Alexis Lunsford, Olive Branch Blake Martin, Red Banks Lane Oxner, Hernando Whitt Rodgers, Byhalia Donovan Sharp, Olive Branch Brooke Starnes, Olive Branch

SINGING RIVER EPA Alyssa Britton, Ocean Springs * Samuel Goff, Moss Point Taylor McDonald, Lucedale Cailin Sims, Vancleave *

PEARL RIVER VALLEY EPA Taylor Martin, Brooklyn Anna Claire Pecunia, Hattiesburg

SOUTHERN PINE EPA Caleb Harrison, Mize Tanner Rogers, Collins Ward Winstead, Pelahatchie SOUTHWEST MISS. EPA Natalie Remley, McComb Colton Watson, Brookhaven TALLAHATCHIE VALLEY EPA John Tyler Gammill, Pope Margo Haley, Batesville Madalyn Hawthorne, Pope Tatyana Oliver, Batesville

TOMBIGBEE EPA Mackenzie Guin, Marietta Jyanna Ivy, Shannon Kayla McMillen, Fulton Chase Patterson, Tupelo Anna Claire Priest, Saltillo Anna Robinson, Fulton Hailey Wooldridge, Nettleton TWIN COUNTY EPA Nathan Bridges, Louise YAZOO VALLEY EPA Tanner Graves, Benton * Blake Moore, Vaughan EPAs OF MISS. Ethan Piel, Madison

* Leadership Finalists Spirit Award °• Friendship Award

VanDevender wins Leadership Award Jack VanDevender, sponsored by 4-County Electric Power Association, accepts the Youth Leadership Award from Ron Stewart, senior vice president of the Electric Power Associations of Mississippi. A junior at Central Academy, Jack has served as the class president and vice president as well as president and vice president of Mississippi Association of Independent Schools (MAIS) Honor Society. He is a member of the football, baseball and basketball teams. Jack is also a member of Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA). He lives in Shuqualak with his parents, Tol and Sheila VanDevender. Jack will serve a one-year term as Mississippi’s representative on the national Youth Leadership Council of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. The award includes a $1,000 scholarship. Tanner Graves, of Yazoo Valley Electric, and Reid Stevens, of 4-County, were recognized at the conclusion of the workshop. Both students received leadership awards and a $500 scholarship.

LEADERSHIP CLASS OF 2016


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Shrimp plants are easily grown, bloom all summer he Garden Extravaganza was held recently in Jackson, and I have to say I’m feeling really inspired. There were literally thousands of brightly colored flowering plants all begging to be taken home. Of course, I bought a few flats of calibrachoas (mainly Holy Moly!) and some new Supertunias. Besides the new varieties on display, there were some old reliable plants that home gardeners sometimes forget about. One plant I think will really impress is the yellow shrimp plant, which was a 2000 Mississippi Medallion winSouthern ner. Known Gardening botanically as Pachystachys by Dr. Gary Bachman lutea, this tropical plant is easy to grow and will bloom all summer long. For another twist, there is a similar plant with red bracts called Mexican shrimp plant (Justicia brandegeana). Yellow shrimp plants have dark-green, oval-shaped leaves. They grow upright up to 36 inches tall, topped with spikes of blooms. The plant starts blooming by

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sending up 4- to 5-inch yellow bracts followed by narrow, tubular white flowers between 1 and 2 inches long. It’s for the yellow bracts that we grow this plant, but the flowers provide an additional surprise. Butterflies and hummingbirds find them irresistible. Be sure to plant yellow shrimp plants where they will receive full morning sunlight but get some shade for protection

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against the intense afternoon sun. Flowers develop on new growth and are perfect for cutting and enjoying indoors. They will last and be attractive for many weeks. The more you cut, the more flowers will be produced. Yellow shrimp plants require welldrained landscape beds with a high organic content. Place a couple of tablespoons of 14-14-14 or 18-6-12 controlled-release fertilizer in the planting hole at transplant. To keep the nutrition at optimum levels, use water-soluble fertilizer every couple of weeks during normal irrigation.

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The yellow shrimp plant is easy to grow and will bloom all summer long. Plant and grow the plants where they can receive full morning sun but get some shade for protection from afternoon sunlight. Photo: MSU Extension/Gary Bachman

I think yellow shrimp plants are even more spectacular when grown in containers where they can be enjoyed on the porch and patio. Since it is a tropical species, growing the plant in a container allows you to move it inside during the winter. Another big plus for the yellow shrimp plant is how easy it is to propagate. Just cut an 8- to 10-inch-long stem and strip off the lower set of leaves. Be sure to dust the cut end with rooting hormone, which is readily available at your local garden center. Place the cutting in moist potting soil or sand, keeping one to two sets of leaves above the soil line. Place cuttings in the shade, lightly mist them in the morning and evening, and they should root easily. This process may be useful next fall if you planted yours in the landscape and want to overwinter some for the next spring.

Financial Services

1-800-844-3254 “Serving you for Over 50 Years” Guarantees subject to the claim paying ability of the insurance company. Surrender of the contract may be subject to surrender charge or market value adjustment. Product not available in all states. This is a single premium deferred Annuity. Interest rates are subject to change. Withdrawals prior to age 591/2 may be subject to a 10% IRS penalty.

Dr. Gary Bachman is an associate Extension and research professor of horticulture at the Mississippi State University Coastal Research and Extension Center in Biloxi. He is also host of “Southern Gardening” radio and TV programs.


12 I Today in Mississippi I April 2016

Mike Smith, General Manager & CEO Lorri Freeman, APR, Manager of Public Relations Amanda Parker, Public Relations Specialist For more information, call 601-947-4211/228-497-1313 x 2251 or visit our website at www.singingriver.com

www.siningriver.com

April is Lineman Appreciation Month

Pool timers can help conserve energy

Mike Smith, General Manager and CEO Singing River Electric

Line work is a challenging profession. The job must be done timely, precisely and safely despite frigid, hot, windy or flooded conditions. This year started out as no exception. Mississippi and the Gulf South experienced severe weather followed by record flooding in midMarch. Our linemen restored power to all who could receive it, and efforts went a step beyond. Linemen took to boats to monitor power line clearance and other safety issues due to river flooding. Singing River Electric linemen are knowledgeable when it comes to skill and safety measures. They go through

hundreds of hours of safety training during their careers and are required to wear many different pieces of protective equipment on a daily basis. Their training doesn’t stop at safety. Line work is tedious, and it takes a skilled craftsman to learn the trade. Linemen specialize in underground and overhead line work, as well as line and substation construction. The challenges do not just rest with the employees, but their families too. It takes dedication to the job and a commitment to your community and neighbors to leave your family at 2 a.m. during a storm to go to work. It also takes dedicated families to understand the

requirements of the job and support their linemen. Singing River Electric works hard to equip and educate our employees so they can perform their jobs and serve our members. Many of our employees have decades of experience restoring service both here locally and across the southeast region as we assist our fellow electric cooperatives after storms. During this National Electric Lineman Appreciation Month, I’d like to recognize all of our hard-working employees for the work they do to keep the power on in our communities here in southeast Mississippi.

Jeff Gray Member Services Representative gray@singingriver.com

Spring is almost here. If you have a pool, now is the time to start getting it ready for summer. We recommend a pool-pump setting of 8-hours per day. If you have a cleaning system such as a Polaris, we recommend running it about 4 hours a day until the pool is clean and then one to two days a week as needed. The average cost of operating a pool pump for 24 hours a day for 30 days is about $135 so, 8 hours a day would reduce the cost to about $45 a month. If your pool has a cleaning system or a built-in whirlpool with a booster pump, there will be additional cost for that. Timers can help ensure the pump and cleaning system run only when you choose. A single timer can be used for a pool pump only. If you have a cleaning system with a booster pump, you will need to install a second or dual timer to run both units. This will allow the pool pump to start first and be followed by the booster pump.


April 2016



Today in Mississippi  12a

Singing River Electric salutes our dedicated linemen

National Rural Electric Cooperative Association has designated April each year as National Lineman Appreciation Month. Singing River Electric will join their efforts and honor our hard-working employees who often work in very challenging conditions to keep the lights on. The cooperative proudly recognizes all electric linemen for the services they perform and invites our members to take a moment to thank a lineman. Inset photos are from the recent Pascagoula River Flooding in March. Photo by Singing River member Aimee Sykes.


12b I Today in Mississippi I April 2016

South Mississippi Electric rolls out solar pow facilties are located at Singing River Ele Jim Compton, SME’s general manager South Mississippi Electric (SME) on and CEO. “Our members have expressed Monday, March 14, celebrated the first a strong desire for renewable energy to be solar power generation facilities on the a larger part of our generation mix. Today Mississippi Gulf Coast with ribbon cutwe took one step toward accomplishing ting events at Coast Electric Power that goal, but Association in not the last.” Kiln and “Solar will enable South Mississippi of the Singing River Electric to diversify their energy generation solarEach sites is Electric Power and lessen the impact to our members of a approximately Association in price increase from any one source.” one-half acre in Lucedale. The smaller–Mike Smith size and contains 360 panels. The scale installasmaller sites will allow SME and its memtions of 100 kW or less are the first two of five such facilities SME plans to construct bers to better determine optimum location, best technology and proper configuand operate. SME is a generation and ration for larger, utility-scale facilities. transmission cooperative providing elecThe events were attended by elected offitricity to 11 distribution cooperative cials, business leaders and chamber memmembers, which include Coast and Singing River Electric Power associations. bers. “Solar will enable South Mississippi All cooperatives are owned by their memElectric to diversify their energy generabers. tion and lessen the impact to our members Not-for-profit cooperative SME of a price increase from any one source.” announced in June 2015 that it would said Mike Smith, Singing River Electric’s build the facilities and begin operation in CEO and general manager. “We also see first quarter 2016. Coast and Singing River Electric both agreed to provide land the solar facility as a great opportunity for for the facilities, which are located next to education and a new learning experience for our local students.” their respective headquarters. Singing River Electric today serves Solar is considered one of the leading forms of green, or environmentally friend- 73,000 members located in South Mississippi. Coast Electric provides elecly, energy. Panels are used to collect suntricity to more than 80,000 members in light that is converted into electricity. “South Mississippi Electric has entered South Mississippi. SME plans for additional solar sites at the solar power generation business,” said

Southern Pine, Coahoma and Delta Electric Power Associations, and those should be operational in the coming months. SME, with assistance from the National Renewable Cooperative Organization, spent several months studying various options and researching proposals for construction of the facilities. Atlanta-based Hannah Solar was selected to construct and oversee the projects. Additionally, SME has announced a partnership with Origis Energy USA for a large solar facility in Lamar County. The 52-MW location will be built and operated by Origis. SME has committed to purchase all electricity generated at the site. SME provides electricity to 423,000 customers across 55 counties in the state. The company has a diverse energy portfolio that includes natural gas, coal, nuclear, hydropower and solar. This diversity prevents SME from becoming reliant on one energy source and manages fluctuations in prices. “We believe that sunny days are ahead for the company and our members,” said Compton. “Our cooperatives are committed to the betterment of our ratepayers, their communities and their environment. This is just the first of many positive steps we expect in 2016.” For more information about South Mississippi Electric or future updates on this project, please visit www.MyElectricCooperative.com.


April 2016 I Today in Mississippi I 12c

wer sites. First of five planned solar generation ectric in Lucedale and Coast Electric in Kiln.

April 22 is

Earth Day! Celebrate by: • Paying your bill online using your SmartHub app. • Choosing paperless billing. • Recycling CFL bulbs at any SRE office. • Attending FREE Energy Fairs in Sand Hill on Friday, May 3, and in Lucedale on Thursday, June 23. Mike Smith, Singing River Electric CEO, along with Sen. Dennis DeBar and Jeff Bowman, South Mississippi Electric chief legal officer, address attendees at the Lucedale ribbon cutting.

www.singingriver.com


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2016 Workshop for tomorrow’s

LeadersHIP

Mississippi electric cooperatives invest in their youth for 30 years The Electric Power Associations of Mississippi’s Youth Leadership Program, now in its 30th year, has grown significantly since the first group met in Jackson in 1987.

Alyssa Britton St. Martin High School

Cailin Sims Vancleave High School

Electric cooperatives from all areas of Mississippi now participate in the program. Each year they send students from their communities to the capital city for a three-day workshop where the students participate in leadership building activities and have the opportunity to meet with their legislators and state elected officials. Alyssa Britton, Samuel Goff, Taylor McDonald and Cailin Sims were selected among the schools in Singing River Electric’s service area to represent the cooperative during this hands-on event. They were joined by other students from across the state, who have also demonstrated leadership traits in their schools Taylor McDonald and communities. George County High School This year was the largest group to attend the workshop with Samuel Goff 78 of Mississippi’s brightest high school juniors who came East Central High School together at the Marriott in downtown Jackson, Feb. 24-26. The event began on Wednesday evening with a “Get Acquainted” session. The students took part in a Town Hall meeting, which encouraged them to discuss issues they are facing Left: Rep. Manly Barton, Rep. John Read, as young people. Together, they developed solutions to these Cailin Sims, Sen. Dennis DeBar Jr, Rep. Doug McLeod, Taylor McDonald, Alyssa issues, which they could use to make a difference among their Britton, Samuel Goff and Sen. Michael Watson at the legislative breakfast.

Right: Samuel and his group use critical thinking skills to complete their task.

Taylor and Alyssa record the qualities of a leader during their group’s brainstorming session.

www.singingriver.com


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Community Grant Program peers in their own communities. The students enjoyed a breakfast with their legislators before visiting the Mississippi State Capitol where they were able to see those same men and women at work making laws for our state. They also heard encouraging Cailin navigates her way through a grid with the speeches from motivational speakers, as well as Mississippi’s top help of her teammates. leaders, Gov. Phil Bryant and Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves. Alyssa Britton and Cailin Sims were finalists for the youth leadership council position to represent the state of Mississippi. Building leaders is fundamental to building a strong community and through this program, Singing River Electric hopes to prepare these young people for a bright future. The program has proven to encourage students to reach their goals year after year and the students take away lifelong relationships. “We are proud to have these young people represent Singing River Electric,” said Mike Smith, general manager and CEO. “We know that these students have worked hard in their studies and to make a positive impact in the community. We believe they will do great things in the future and believe in the investment we are making in these students each year.” The students will travel with the group to Washington, D.C., in June where they will have the opportunity to visit with Mississippi’s congressional delegation on Capitol Hill, as well as visit all of the popular sites and monuments of our nation’s capital on the seven-day tour.

These three organizations received NHN grants for the January 2016 application period. The next deadline is May 13. For guidelines, visit www.singingriver.com.

Moss Point High School STEM Club Singing River Electric Public Relations Specialist Amanda Parker (right) presents a NHN Grant check to Moss Point High School STEM Instructor and STEM Club Founder Billy Carroll (second from right). MPHS STEM Club received $1,195 to purchase an Impulse G3 Race system for students to construct and race in the state Technology Student Association CO2 Dragster Racing competition. Also present are (l-r:) Moss Point School District Career and Technical Education Director Dr. Durand Payton and Engineering class students Hannah Lee, Steven Li, Jordan Joseph, Allison Mizell, Dyamond Marion, Broderick Craig, Teshawna Sanders and OkoyJea Buckley.

Jackson County Historical and Genealogical Society SRE Manager of Public Relations Lorri Freeman (center) presents a NHN Grant check to Jackson County Historical and Genealogical Society President-elect Joanne Anderson (second from left). JCHGS received $2,399 for an Epson Expression scanner for scanning documents up to 11x17 and to digitize historical photographs to current standards. Also present are (l-r:) JCHGS Publications Committee Chairman Tommy Wixon, JCHGS President George Sholl and Pascagoula Library Branch Manager Jennifer Baxter.

Gautier High School – Allied Health Program SRE Gautier District Manager Brian Hughey (right) presents a NHN Grant check for $2,152 to Gautier High School Allied Health Program Teacher Jenne King, RN, (second from right) and Gautier High School Assistant Principal Cynthia Ware. The Allied Health Program will purchase 8 iPad minis for students to download medical applications to reinforce daily lecture material, prepare them for the state test, view live surgeries, and document their clinical experience.


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Incredible Fudge Brownies mississippi

1 pkg. fudge brownie mix Ingredients specified on package

3 (6-oz.) Hershey’s Symphony bars

Prepare brownie mix according to package directions. Pour half of batter into a greased 9-by-13-inch pan. Arrange chocolate bars on top of batter. Pour remaining batter to cover chocolate bars. Bake according to package directions.

RECIPES FROM RIALS CREEK

‘Heavenly Recipes’ Rials Creek United Methodist Women (UMW) members have pleased generations of their family members with good home cooking. Now their recipes are helping to serve up some good works. Proceeds from sales of the organization’s new cookbook, “Heavenly Recipes,” will be used for their mission work, from assisting individuals in times of crisis to helping support the Methodist Children’s Home, Operation Christmas Child and other more charitable causes. The cookbook also serves as a tribute to the memory of past members. “We have honored our members who have passed away by sharing their recipes first in each section of the cookbook. Without these people, our church

would not be here today,” said member Barbara Gauthier. Rials Creek United Methodist Church, located in Mendenhall, was founded in 1860 as Pleasant Hill Methodist Church. The church was rebuilt after a tornado destroyed the original building. Its UMW unit dates to 1954, when it was called the Women’s Society of Christian Services. “Heavenly Recipes” focuses on long-time favorite recipes using readily available ingredients and easy cooking techniques. These are the dishes that fill the tables at family gatherings and church suppers, as well as daily mealtime. To order, send a money order for $18 (includes shipping) to Rials Creek UMW, 685 Airport Road, Mendenhall, MS 39114.

1 clove garlic, minced 1 pt. (2 cups) mayonnaise 5 Tbsp. ketchup 2 dashes Tabasco sauce

1 ½ tsp. Worcestershire sauce 2 ½ Tbsp. curry powder ¾ Tbsp. salt

Mix garlic, mayonnaise, ketchup, Tabasco and Worcestershire. Stir in curry powder and salt to taste. Chill 1 hour. Delicious with a fresh vegetable tray.

Coleslaw Dressing ¼ cup milk ¼ cup buttermilk ½ cup mayonnaise 1⁄3 cup sugar

2 Tbsp. lemon juice 1 Tbsp. white vinegar Salt and pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients and pour over coleslaw. Refrigerate.

Carrot-Raisin Salad 1 cup chopped raw carrots ½ cup seedless raisins 1 apple, diced ½ cup finely chopped celery

½ cup chopped nuts ¼ tsp. salt ¼ cup mayonnaise

Combine all ingredients. Chill and serve on lettuce.

Watergate Cake 1 box white cake mix 1 box instant pistachio pudding mix 1 cup chopped nuts

1 cup vegetable oil 3 eggs 1 cup club soda

Mix all ingredients and beat 4 minutes. Bake in a tube pan 40 to 50 minutes at 350 F. Frosting: 2 envelopes Dream Whip whipped topping mix 1 ¼ cups milk

1 box instant pistachio pudding mix ½ cup chopped nuts Coconut

Mix Dream Whip and milk until stiff. Add pudding mix and nuts. Spread on cake and sprinkle with coconut. Keep cake in refrigerator.

Slow Cooker Lasagna

Lime Grilled Chicken ¼ cup fresh-squeezed lime juice (approx. 2 to 3 small limes; do not use lime juice concentrate) 2 tsp. corn oil 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro leaves 1 clove garlic, minced, or 1 tsp.

Curry Dip

½ tsp. chili powder 2 (4-oz.) boneless chicken breast cutlets (pound to ¼-inch thickness) 2 tsp. grated lime peel

In a small bowl, whisk together lime juice, oil, cilantro, garlic and chili powder. Pour into a large resealable plastic bag. Add chicken cutlets and shake to coat well. Marinate in the refrigerator 6 to 8 hours, or overnight, gently shaking bag 2 to 3 times during marinating. Heat grill to medium-high heat. Place chicken on grill rack and grill until juices run clear when meat is pierced with a fork, about 15 minutes. Discard remaining marinade. Sprinkle cooked chicken with lime peel. Serve topped with salsa over rice, wrapped in warm flour tortillas or sliced over salad greens.

1 lb. ground beef 1 (24-oz.) jar spaghetti sauce 1 cup water 1 (15-oz.) carton ricotta cheese 1 (7-oz.) pkg. mozzarella cheese, divided

¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese 1 egg 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley 6 lasagna noodles, uncooked

Brown meat in skillet; drain. Stir in spaghetti sauce and water. In a separate bowl, combine ricotta, 1 ½ cups mozzarella, 2 tablespoons Parmesan, egg and parsley. Spoon 1 cup meat sauce into slow cooker; top with layers of ½ each of the noodles (broken to fit) and cheese mixture. Cover with 2 cups meat sauce. Top with remaining noodles (broken to fit), cheese mixture and meat sauce. Cover with lid. Cook on low 4 to 6 hours or until liquid is absorbed. Sprinkle with remaining cheeses. Let stand, covered, 10 minutes or until cheese is melted.


April 2016



I

Today in Mississippi

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Today in Mississippi

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April 2016

Mississippi

Type or print your ad clearly. Be sure to include your telephone number. Deadline is the 10th of each month for the next month’s issue. Rate is $2.50 per word, 10-word minimum. Mail payment with your ad to Today in Mississippi, P.O. Box 3300, Ridgeland, MS 39158-3300. Have any questions? Phone 601-605-8600 or email advertising@epaofms.com.

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Grind Away ANY Size Stump FAST! LOWEST

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Picture this...

pring S Colors

2

1

3

4 1. Japanese magnolia blossoms brighten an early spring day. Cecil Cowley, Southaven. 2. Welcome back, butterflies! Becky Syfrett, Macon; 4-County Electric member. 3. Purple petals reach for the sun. Janice Wallace, Mize; Southern Pine Electric member. 4. Greenery sets off showy gladiolus. Ashley Renfrow, age 16, Harrisville; Southern Pine Electric member. 5. Bold red lilies command attention. Beverley Miller, Olive Branch; Northcentral Electric member. 6. Daffodil heralds spring. Cherie Foster, Hamilton; Monroe County Electric member. 7. Pretty in pink. Kristen Breland, Wiggins. 8. Nature’s pest control. Carolyn Petro, Hattiesburg; Pearl River Valley Electric member. 9. Elegant iris. Sandy Warren, Benton; Yazoo Valley Electric member. 10. Daisies, a timeless springtime icon. Phyllis Smith, Yazoo City; Yazoo Valley Electric member. 11. Sadie Stringer explores dandeloins at grandma’s house. Melissa Stringer, Foxworth; Pearl River Valley Electric member. 12. A stunning display of feeding butterflies. Norma Bowlin, Summit; Magnolia Electric member.

Our next “Picture This” theme: Birds Selections will appear in our July issue. Deadline for submissions is June 10. Details at www.todayinmississippi.com.


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April 2016

Pistol-packing mama t is probably not a good idea to talk about carrying a gun, though if you take a course on how to safely handle and shoot the weapon, and it is legally registered in your name, why not causally mention that you are a gun carrier? Word might get around to potential criminals and you will get more respect. When I first heard about folks getting permits to carry a concealed weapon (pistol), I thought that sounded like a redneck thing to do. (Though, just living in Mississippi might give us that reputation.) I changed my mind about carrying a gun when our church sponsored a gun safety course, and then Mr. Roy decided that we both needed to get our permits ... especially me. I have always been afraid of the dark. He convinced me that taking a gun safety course would give me more confidence and possibly eliminate my fear of the dark. Mr. Roy was exempted from the course. He applied and received a permit since he is an Army veteran. Jimmy Grafe, Mr. Roy’s cousin, and his wife have gun carry permits. His youngest daughter had signed up last November for the Mississippi Enhanced

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Carry Permit course, so we went together—women only. Prior to this, Jimmy supplied several pistols for me to use in target practice at his house, plus instructions on loading and unloading. I picked the one I could handle best. The course was taught by a retired policeman. Afterwards, I was a sharp shooter and I felt inclined to go to a police academy. I reconsidered when I learned that I would be on call at night. I have confidence with a gun, but they didn’t teach me not to fear the dark. We have the latest technology in home security systems and now I go to the kitchen in the dark without holding Mr. Roy’s hand. I still may hold my gun. My sweet grandmother was responsible for my fear. When I was a child, Big Mama wouldn’t let me sleep by a window; she was afraid someone might break in her big old house and kidnap me. I slept in a middle bedroom, but I saw her walking around at midnight with her flashlight, checking all the rooms. I was taught never to walk into a dark room because a burglar or kidnapper could be hiding behind a piece of furniture. Therefore, when I went to the kitchen she walked with me; the lights had strings hanging down in the middle of each room. I couldn’t reach them.

Taking a course on how to safely use a weapon is at the top of my list of “good things” to do. I hope you, my readers, will consider getting a permit. Yet, I was shocked to find out many women are already “pistolpacking mamas.” You may have your permit too. While new Mississippi law Grin ‘n’ states that any Bare It Mississippi citizen can carry a by Kay Grafe weapon in a purse or briefcase, when you take a course and obtain a permit you are granted other associated privileges. I strongly recommend the Enhanced Carry Permit course even for the experi-

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enced pistol owner. It teaches gun safety, how to properly hold a pistol, firing positions and how to recognize potential threats. Mr. Roy was not surprised when I asked for a gun last Christmas. I picked out a Ruger .22 Magnum hammerless revolver. With magnum ammunition it is quite a gun, and easy for me to shoot. One change has occurred at my house. When Mr. Roy comes home from a meeting after dark, he always calls out, “Don't shoot, it’s me!” My grandmother would be proud. 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.


April 2016

I

Today in Mississippi

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21

Mississippi Seafood Trail covers the state with great catches

By Nancy Jo Maples Looking for local seafood? Look toward the trail that meanders through Mississippi featuring diners serving delicious dishes prepared with Gulf Coast catches. The Mississippi Seafood Trail promotes a variety of restaurant choices from one end of the state to the other. The waters of the Gulf Coast have it all: crab, finfish, shrimp and oysters. The eateries along the trail can put those delicacies on your plate. The seafood trail was established in 2014 with grant money from BP Oil, owner of Deepwater Horizon, whose oil rig exploded in 2010. The explosion engulfed the Gulf with millions of gallons of crude oil, which drove away consumers of Gulf Coast-caught seafood. The grant money for the promotional project waned; however, the Mississippi Hospitality and Restaurant Association (MHRA) recognized the value in promoting the state’s seafood. The trail spotlights restaurants that offer Coastcaught fish. “The first year of the program was specific to the Coast. There had been a lot of bad publicity about Gulf seafood. We wanted people to know that the quality has not been compromised and that safety is not an issue,” Mike Cashion, MHRA executive director, said.

Photo: William Colgin

Cashion said coast residents are experienced at eating Gulf seafood and know what to expect. He said when the program went statewide

last year, it saw a more significant response from consumers and proved to be even more successful. Inspired by the Mississippi Blues

Trail and the Mississippi Country Music Trail, the MHRA organized the Mississippi Seafood Trail. Many states have food trails that feature burgers, barbecue, cheese, wine and other eats. The Mississippi Seafood Trail made such a splash that it hooked the No. 2 spot last year in USA Today’s Top 10 Readers’ Choice Awards for Best Food Trail. New Mexico nabbed the top spot with its Green Chile Cheeseburger Trail. Mississippi’s trail features more than 40 restaurants across 360 miles from the Coast to the Tennessee state line. These restaurants must offer at least five menu items featuring wild-caught seafood from the Gulf to be considered for trail membership. Participating restaurants are required to exhibit marketing material about the trail and to educate their staff on the program in an effort to enhance the guest experience. Training is provided by MHRA upon request. Product and

menu prices are the sole decisions of the restaurant; securing an approved product is also the responsibility of the restaurant. Promotions for the Mississippi Seafood Trail target the tourist season— May through August. Cashion said the trail is not necessarily a tourist’s purpose for visiting Mississippi, but he does believe it has a positive impact on a tourist’s experience in the state. “I don’t think it attracts tourists, but once they get here it gives them the vehicle to find a location for good Gulf food,” Cashion said. Promotions for the trail appear in publications distributed outside the state and are posted on social media. An app for electronic devices is being made available this year so that foodies can easily locate restaurants on the trail. The website, mississippiseafoodtrail.com, is updated regularly and full of details. Writer Nancy Jo Maples can be reached at 188 Ernest Pipkins Road, Lucedale, MS 39452 or nancyjomaples@aol.com.


22

I

Today in Mississippi

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April 2016

Events MISSISSIPPI

Want more than 400,000 readers to know about your special 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 send to news@epaofms.com. Events open to the public will be published free of charge as space allows. Please note that events are subject to change; we recommend calling to confirm details before traveling.

13th Annual Walk for Wishes, April 2, Meridian. 5K walk with prizes, wish kids, photos with Gary Dawkins’ slingshot car; 9:30 a.m. Held in conjunction with Threefoot Festival. Dumont Plaza. Details: 601-483-8144. Choctaw County Flea Market, April 2, Ackerman. Main Street parking lot; 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Details: 662-285-6337; j.hughes@msstate.edu. Art in the Pass, April 2-3, Pass Christian. Fine arts, music, food, seafood cooking demos. Free admission. War Memorial Park. Details: 650-7430870; artinthepass.com. Also, Celebrate the Gulf Marine Education Festival on Saturday. Details: 228-475-7047. Two Rivers Bluegrass Festival, Heritage & Forestry Expo, April 2-9, Leakesville. Greene County Rural Events Center. Details: 601-4085965. Midsouth Stargaze and Astronomy Conference, April 6-9, French Camp. Observing, presentations by professional research astronomers, exhibits, camping. Admission; registration required. Rainwater Observatory. Details: 662-547-7230; rainwaterobservatory.org. Third Annual Touch a Truck, April 9, Laurel. Kids get to explore all types of trucks; 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Admission. Laurel-Jones County Library parking lot. Details: 601-433-3255; laurelmainstreet.com/events. 12th Annual Whistle Stop Arts & Crafts Festival, April 9, Waynesboro. Arts/crafts, mechanical bull, 5K run, pony rides, classic car/motorcycle show, carnival rides, kids’ train rides, more. Downtown. Details: 866-735-2268; Facebook: Waynesboro Whistle Stop Festival. Mississippi Senior Olympics, April 9 - May 21, Gulf Coast. Competition in 25 sports for anyone 50 and over. Details: msseniorolym.org. 36th Alcorn State University Jazz Festival, April 16, Vicksburg. Special guest artist Branford Marsalis. Performances by student jazz ensembles from across country. Concerts, workshop. Free. Vicksburg Convention Center. Details: 601877-6602, 866-822-6338; alcorn.edu/jazzfest. Spring Wildflower Field Walk, April 16,

Picayune. Led by arboretum director Pat Drackett; 1-2 p.m. Admission for non-members; register by April 15. Crosby Arboretum. Details: 601-7992311. 13th Annual Juke Joint Festival, April 16, Clarksdale. Blues, history tours, 5K run/walk, juke joints, racing pigs. Related events Thurs.-Sun. Downtown. Details: 662-624-5992; jukejointfestival.com. Bluegrass, Country and Gospel Singing, April 16, Black Hawk. Concessions. Black Hawk Old School; 6 p.m. Details: 662-453-0072; bobbykayalford@gmail.com. Lower Delta Talks: Volcanoes of the Mississippi Delta, April 19, Rolling Fork. Speaker: Paul Parrish, Miss. Dept. of Environmental Quality; 6:30 p.m. SharkeyIssaquena County Library. Coast Chorale Spring Concert: “Feeling the Spirit,” April 22, Pass Christian. Most Holy Trinity Catholic Church; 6:30 p.m. Also, May 1, 2 p.m. at Christ Episcopal Church, Bay St. Louis; and May 15, 2 p.m. at Pass Christian Senior Citizens Center, Pass Christian. Details: 504-319-3530. Spring Plant Sale, April 22-23, Picayune. Native trees, shrubs, perennials; plant professionals on hand; 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Free admission. Crosby Arboretum. Details: 601-799-2311. 15th Starkville Farm Toy Show, April 22-23, Starkville. Sales, trades, toy talk. Mississippi Horse Park. Details: 601-562-8859, 662-769-3107. Magnolia State Bluegrass Association Spring Show, April 22-23, Polkville. Live music; 1 p.m. daily. Bring lawn chairs. Also, Camp & Jam, April 17-21. Music Barn. Details: 601-408-5965, 985507-1790. Sixth Annual Cruise for St. Jude, April 23, Lucedale. Motorcycle ride, car show, arts/crafts vendors, Kids Zone, music. Free admission. George County Fairgrounds. Details: 601-508-2202, 601508-8551. Rankin County Master Gardeners Annual Plant Sale, April 23, Brandon. Hundreds of plants for sale; 8 a.m.-noon. Free admission. Rankin County Extension/911 Building. Spring Variety Sale, April 23-24, Meridian.

Clothing, home dec, kitchen items, toys, boutique area, more. Meridian Little Theatre. Details: 601482-6371 or 601-679-7671. Tedeschi Trucks Band in Concert, April 24, Cleveland. Outdoor concert; 7 p.m. Dockery Farms. Details: 662-846-4626; dockeryfarms.org. Library Book Sale, April 25-30, Picyaune. Bargains in all categories of books, also magazines; 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Free admission. Picayune Library. Details: 601-798-5081. Shape-note Singing School, April 27, Jackson. Learn to sing Early American hymns in four-part harmony; 6:30-8:30 p.m. Free. Mississippi Ag and Forestry Museum. Details: 601-953-1094. Gautier Garden Club Annual Plant Sale, April 29-30, Gautier. St. Pierres Episcopal Church; 8 a.m.- 4 p.m. Details: 228-522-6268. 15th Annual 8-Mile Yard Sale, April 30, Greenwood Springs, Monroe County. Food, clothes, tools, antique furniture, more; 7 a.m.-2 p.m. Local vendors only. Details: 662-315-6955. Star Spring Festival, April 30, Star. Crafts, 5K run, car show, games, food, more. Benefits St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, American Cancer Society. Details: starspringfestival.com. Deanash Children’s Village Open Car Show, April 30, Hattiesburg. Music by Calm Assurance, country storyteller James Pearson, vendors; 8 a.m.- 1 p.m. Free admission. Pineview Baptist Church. Details: 601-467-1138; anderson1549@bellsouth.net. Wister Gardens Workshop, April 30, Belzoni. Featuring Felder Rushing, landscape design; Lynette McDougald, floral design; Evelyn Roughton, culinary artist. Wister Gardens. Details: 662-836-7073, 662-836-7996; wistergardens.org. The ARK 10K, April 30, Hernando. Trail race benefitting Desoto Greenways; 8-11 a.m. Coldwater River Nature Trails, Arkabutla Dam. Details: 901288-6295; amanda@startinggunevents.com.

The Whisnants in Concert, April 30, Newton. Southern gospel music; 7 p.m. Love offering. Ebenezer Baptist Church. Details: 601-896-2249. Barn Sale, May 6-7, Purvis. More than 30 collectors with antiques, collectibles, railroad, signs, primitives, cast iron, tools, more; 7 a.m. until. Free admission; 4799 Old Hwy. 11. Purvis (Oak Grove). Details: 601-818-5886, 601-794-7462. Holcomb Doodlebug Festival, May 7, Holcomb. Country and gospel singing, arts/crafts, train rides and other kids’ activities, food. Main Street. Details: 662-307-0709. 27th Annual Okatoma Music Festival, May 7, Collins. Featuring Miss Mississippi Hannah Roberts, 5K run/walk, arts/crafts, quilt show, fair rides, health fair, live entertainment, more. Details: 601-765-6012; covingtonchamber.com. Day in the Park, May 7, Morton. Arts/crafts, food, antique tractors, kids’ activities, entertainment. Meet the Press performs 5:30 p.m.; fireworks at dark. Farris Municipal Park. Details: 601732-8609. George County Firefighters Association Annual BBQ Challenge, May 7, Lucedale. KCBSsanctioned event; 9 a.m.-4 p.m. George County Fairgrounds. Details: 601-508-8131; gcffabbqchallenge.org. 18th Annual Deep Delta Blues Heritage Festival, May 7, Rolling Fork. Vendors, music, BBQ contest, classic/antique car show, more. Details: 662-873-2755, 662-873-3814. 19th US 11 Antique Alley Yard Sale, May 1215, Meridian. Yard sales extending 502 miles to Bristol, Va. U.S. Highway 11. Details: 601-9173727. Mississippi Gulf Coast Emergency Preparedness Fair & Expo, May 14, Gulfport. Booths, children’s activities, door prizes; 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Free. Lyman Community Center. Details: 228243-8710; Facebook.

Sponsored in part by:

• FRANKS CHEVROLET, Kosciusko, MS • FARM HOUSE FRATERNITY, MSU • GROUP SOUTH INSURANCE, Carthage, MS • HOME HARDWARE CENTER, Kosciusko, MS • STARKVILLE FORD, Starkville, MS • OKTIBBEHA COUNTY CO-OP, Starkville, MS • WADE INC., Greenwood, MS • THOMAS AUCTION COMPANY, Kosciusko MS • MR. BILLY ATWOOD, Kosciusko, MS • ATTALA OIL COMPANY, Kosciusko, MS Bulldog Invitational 4-H Horse Show Saturday, April 23, 2016

• B & G EQUIPMENT, Philadelphia, MS • WINDHAM TRACTOR COMPANY, Philadelphia, MS • THE CITIZENS BANK, Philadelphia, MS • UNITED PRODUCE, Starkville, MS • MR. EDDIE McNEAL, Starkville, MS • WINONA TRACTOR, Winona, MS • DELTA GROUP, Kosciusko, MS FIND US On Facebook: • MEGG'S TIRE STORE, Kosciusko, MS

Starkville Farm Toy Show

For more info call:

• Billy, 601-562-8859 • Greg, 662-418-9101 • Mitch, 662-769-3107


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How Does Harbor Freight Sell GREAT QUALITY Tools at the LOWEST Prices?

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$29.99

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 8/5/16. Limit one coupon per customer per day.

• No Hassle Return Policy • Lifetime Warranty On All Hand Tools

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$

17999 comp at

$311

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 8/5/16. Limit one coupon per customer per day.

• 600+ Stores Nationwide • HarborFreight.com 800-423-2567


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DISH TV Service High-Speed Internet

ASK ABOUT OUR orrdder: GIFT50 ons apply.

PRICE STARTS AT:

$49.99

CALL NOW

A MONTH

All offers require credit qualification, early termination fee

OFFER ON NL LY Y GOOD FOR NEW DISH SUBSCRIBERS. • SE HABLA ESP SP PA AÑOL

OR VISIT WWW WWW.INFINITYDISH.COM .INFINITYDISH.COM FOR FOR MORE

FREE

FREE

FREE

HOPPER

Premium Movie Channels

HD

Smart DVR DVR E Equipment quipment Upgrade Upgrade Available with qualifying packages. Monthly fees apply: Hopperr,, $15; Joey, $7; Super Joey, $10.

For For Life Life

For 3 Months Offer subject to change based on premium channel availability. Not available with certain packages. Regular monthly prices apply after 3 months unless you call to cancel.

Available with qualifying packages.

All offers require credit qualification, 24-month commitment with early termination fee and eAutopay.

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Terms and Conditions: Promotional Offers: A dvertised price requires credit qualification and eAutoPay. Upfront activation and/or receiver upgrade fees may appply based on All calls with InfinityDISH are monitored and recorded for quality assurance and training purposes. Important Te credit qualification. After 12-month promotional period, then-current monthly price applies and is subject to change. Offer ends 6/6/16. 2 YYeear Commitment: Early termination fee of $20/mo. remaining applies if you cancel early. Hopper: Mon thly fees: Hopper, $15; Joey, $7; Super Joey, $10. Premium Channels: Subject to credit qualification. After 3 mos., you will be billed $50/mo. for HBO, Cinemax, Showtime and Starz unless you call to cancel. Installation/Equipment Requirements: Free Standard Professional Installation only. Leased equipment must be returned to DISH upon cancellation or unreturned equipment fees apply. Other: All prices, fees, charges, packages, programming, features, functionality and offers subject to change without notice. After 6 mos., you will be billed $8/mo for Protection Plan unless you call to cancel. Free standard professional installation only. Taxes or reimbursement charges for state gross earnings taxes may apply. Additional restrictions and taxes may apply. HBO®, Cinemax® and related channels and service marks are the property of Home Box Office, Inc. SHOWTIME is a registered trademark of Showtime Networks Inc., a CBS Company. STARZ and related channels and service marks are property of Starz Entertainment, LLC. Visa® gift card must be requested through your DISH Representative at time of purchase. $50 Visa® gift card requires activation and $2.95 shipping and handling fee. You will receive a claim voucher within 3-4 weeks and the voucher must be returned within 30 days. Your Visa® gift card will arrive in approximately 6-8 weeks. InfinityDISH charges a one-time $49.99 non-refundable processing fee which is subject to change at any time without notice. Indiana C.PP..D. Reg. No. T.S. R1903.

Today in Mississippi April 2016 Singing River  

Today in Mississippi April 2016 Singing River

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