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VOL. 52 NO. 12 1

A solution to belly fat By Nick Della Volpe This book review does not replace medical advice. Not everyone ages gracefully. That “spare tire” is not easy to resolve. Gym visits? Diet? Ads promising quick weight loss are rampant. But who wants Della Volpe another seesaw experience? In six months, the weight comes creeping back. Dr. Jason Fung, a Canadian nephrologist with a biochemical undergraduate degree, has brought science and common sense to the rescue. His two books, starting with “The Obesity Code” and then “The Complete Guide to Fasting,” can equip us with both the knowledge and a working solution to that stubborn belly or hip fat ... and lasting weight loss. The doctor, who struggled for over a decade to help his busy patients with kidney disease (often triggered by diabetes and obesity), offers us this simple solution: interim fasting. Excess insulin, he argues and documents quite persuasively, not calories, is the culprit. Dr. Fung debunks the false-but-popular conclusion that excess calories or insufficient movement are the main culprits. That’s not the root cause. Our hormone-regulating system has been thrown out of whack by current eating and bad snacking habits, filled with overly processed food and sugar-laden stuff. Excessive insulin causes us to store and store glucose as fat, but never burn it as the body’s alternate fuel. Let’s back up. We evolved as a species unsure if there would be another meal anytime soon. In times of feast, our hormone system (deploying insulin) enabled us to store excess nutrients over current needs. After the body fills the cells and stores glycogen in the liver, it converts the excess to fat stores, creating a “spare tank” to use when new fuel was not available. In effect, we have two fuel tanks: one sugar, the other fat. In lean times, we could easily switch tanks – a smart survival fix by Mother Nature. What happened? Modern people have bypassed the maker’s design. We no longer have to hunt or forage for our dinners. With steady agricultural harvests, grocery stores laden with food, drive-thru To page A-3

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Boyd revisits past while discussing future By Betsy Pickle The librarian would have pitched a fit. The approximately 70 people crowded into the New Hopewell Elementary School library were talking, cheering and clapping. That’s not proper library behavior. Except maybe during spring break, when a high-profile alumnus wants to borrow the location to announce officially his candidacy for Tennessee governor and kick off a statewide tour. Randy Boyd was in the favorite-son zone when he visited New Hopewell last Wednesday for the event. “I was famous for playing a tree in one of the school plays,” he quipped to the crowd of family, friends, well-wishers and media. The school is “an important part of my personal history. If I’m elected governor I’ll be spending a lot of time supporting communities just like this across our state.” After the formal announcement, Boyd reminisced more for the Shopper. “I was the fastest guy in school, which meant nothing when I got to high school. I remember some great teachers. I had Mrs. Bragg and Mrs. Broyles and Mr. Kennedy that all really took a personal interest in me. I think I was maybe a little fidgety back in those days, but they worked with me and believed in me. So I think it was a great experience because of the great teachers that I had.”

Randy Boyd speaks as wife Jenny Boyd listens in the library at New Hopewell Elementary School. Boyd, 57, went on to graduate from Doyle High School at 16, then put himself through the University of Tennessee, graduating at 19. “I guess I’ve always been a little

Photo by Betsy Pickle

impatient,” he said. “By the time play sports, and I was OK but not I was 16, I realized I had taken that great, so it didn’t seem like a all the classes I needed to take to reason enough to hang around. graduate. The only reason to stick To page A-3 around for the last year was just to

SoKno stands strong at Neighborhood Conference helping to organize it. By Betsy Pickle Dozens of South Knoxvillians also contribSoKno had its handprints all over the 2017 uted as volunteers, speakers, panel moderaNeighborhood Conference. The popular biennial event at the Knox- tors and booth hosts on the big day, March 11. And after having one nominee, Monte Stanville Convention Center drew hundreds of neighborhood activists for workshops and ley of Old Sevier, for last year’s Diana Conn the annual Neighborhood Awards Luncheon. Good Neighbor of the Year Award, this year But long before it even happened, Office of four of SoKno’s best were nominated for the Neighborhoods assistant coordinator Debbie award: Grant Barton of Island Home Park (for Sharp of South Woodlawn was hard at work his work with Downtown Knoxville), Terry Ca-

ruthers of Colonial Village, Linda Rust of South Haven and Janice Tocher of South Woodlawn. That was half of the nominees! The fact that the top honor went to Vicki Forester of West Haven Village doesn’t detract from the contributions all of the SoKno four have made. Plus, the award itself was created in honor of the late Diana Conn of Old Sevier, who To page A-3

Staples wants school water tested; Eddie Smith pushes back By Betty Bean State Rep. Rick Staples’ inner city District 15 has some of the oldest school buildings in Knox County, and he’s concerned about the water that kids are drinking. “We want to keep what happened in Flint, Mich., from happening here,” he said. That’s why he’s sponsoring a bill mandating the state school board to require schools built before June 19, 1986 (when federal lead bans went into effect), to test students’ drinking water. Suspect samples would be retested, and parents or guardians notified when drinking water shows lead-level test results more than 20 parts per billion. The bill would leave the number of required tests up to the individual districts. “The spirit of this bill is to capture data in schools built before 1986,” Staples said. “We’re just

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questioned the level of testing that would be required for finding lead levels of 20 parts per billion. Smith also said that Knox County has only six to eight schools that were built after 1986, which means that the cost of testing for lead contamination would be at least $20,000 per year, and more if multiple tests are required. Subcommittee chair Mark White of Shelby County said he considers the bill “a good concept,” and agreed that lead-contaminated drinking water is bad for kids, but said he is concerned about piling another mandate on local school districts. He moved to postpone Staples’ bill for a week to get a better handle on costs, and Staples agreed, after politely expressing frustration: “We have no knowledge of the levels of lead,” Staples said. “We do

not have a mechanism. And when we start thinking about spending dollars, we’re spending dollars on our children’s health.” Contacted after the meeting, he said he plans to ask for a vote and expressed frustration at the pushback he received, particularly from Smith. “I believe Eddie’s children are home schooled, so it wouldn’t make that much difference to him. He’s been a great chair of the Knox County delegation, but it would be really great if my colleagues would join me to try and get some bipartisan legislation in place to help capture the data so we can see if there is lead in the drinking water, and if so, how much? Parents and communities want to know this, and we want to keep our children safe. We have to do something to try and answer these questions.”

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trying to capture consistent data to show us where we are. …” Staples said that such tests are not now being conducted, and said the procedure outlined in his bill would require testing 10 Rick Staples taps per school at $20 per tap. Last week, he presented his bill (HB0631) to the Education Administration and Planning Subcommittee and got a lukewarm reception, primarily because of the $177,000 fiscal note attached. Staples’ colleagues Eddie Smith and Harry Brooks are members of the subcommittee. Smith was skeptical, particularly of the section requiring “periodic testing,” which he said is too vague. He also

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A-2 • MArch -NewS arch 22, 22,2017 2017 •• PSowell outh SKhoPPer nox Shopper news

health & lifestyles

Back at it

Brent Blalock, 69, had been having trouble with his lower back for a long time. The mild pain at first followed physical activity like golfing or canoeing, so he just assumed he had overworked his back, or that it was simply a symptom of old age. In June 2016, the pain and discomfort took a new direction. “I thought I had neuropathy,” says Blalock, who has diabetes. “Some days I would have a pain in my legs that I had never had before, and I started having some strange numbness,” Blalock says. “It got progressively worse – instead of experiencing it once every couple of weeks, it was weekly on one leg or the other, and sometimes both.” He credits a team of Covenant Health physicians with getting him into an active lifestyle.

rays and informed Blalock that neuropathy wasn’t the problem. He referred Blalock to neurologist Brent Blalock can enjoy his family to the Darrell Thomas, MD. fullest thanks to a successful spinal stenosis “He did extensive procedure at Fort Sanders Regional. neurological testing and he prescribed an MRI,” Blalock says. After reviewing the results, Dr. Thomas recommended that Blalock see neurosurgeon Barrett Brown, MD, at TN Brain and Spine. “Dr. Brown confirmed exactly what Dr. Thomas thought,” Blalock says. The verdict was spinal stenosis, a condition in which the passage ways of the spine become narrow, putting pressure on the spinal cord or nerves. After reviewing Blalock’s symptoms and test results, Dr. Brown recommended lumbar laminecBlalock scheduled an appoint- tomy, a surgical procedure ment with his primary care doc- that widens the spinal canal tor, Richard Rose, MD, for late and relieves spinal cord or September 2016. He tried to go on nerve pressure caused by about his daily life, but it wasn’t stenosis. easy. “He is very thorough and “In mid-September, we took he goes into detail, telling our grandchildren on a Disney you exactly what your issues cruise, and I couldn’t keep up at are and what his approach is the airport,” says Blalock. going to be,” Blalock says of After struggling through a Dr. Brown. “Dr. Brown and painful and exhausting trip, his staff are very, very communiBlalock was glad to get to the doc- cative, and they take the time to tor’s office. Dr. Rose ordered X- make sure you understand.” Blalock underwent a lumbar laminectomy at Fort Sand-

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“Oh, I’m fantastic,” he says. “I wanted to get my lifestyle back to where I could enjoy my grandkids, and I’m there! I’m fortunate that I have three extremely good doctors – I have not had one single stenosis-related pain since my surgery.” Blalock is looking forward to enjoying all the activities he gave up because of the pain he experienced before surgery. He can hardly wait to get out on the golf course this summer. He wants to go tubing with his grandsons again, and to hike, bike, and get back in his old aluminum canoe. Dr. Brown says many of his patients are like Blalock, ready to enjoy an active retirement that might include gardening, hiking, fishing, traveling or going to grandchildren’s school or sporting events. “Lumbar laminectomy lets patients resume activities they were not able to participate effectively in because of limitations from the neural compression,” he says. Dr. Brown adds that “surgery should never be viewed as a quick fix for pain. But for those who need it, lumbar laminectomy can have life-changing results.”

Spinal stenosis, a narrowing of the passage way of the spine which causes pressure on the spinal cord or nerves, often causes a particular form of discomfort or pain, says Barrett Brown, MD, a neurosurgeon at TN Brain and Spine. Those who have spinal stenosis “may or may not have back pain – and if they do, it’s a minor component of their symptoms,” Dr. Brown explains. “The main issues are pain or weakness in the legs after walking a Barrett Brown, MD set distance. That distance may vary among patients, but generally doesn’t vary for (the individual).” A first visit to his office includes a review of symptoms and methods of treatment the patient has already tried. Dr. Brown works with the patient to find alternatives to surgery if possible. Surgical procedures include risks, so he recommends surgery only after the patient has exhausted other options and symptoms continue to interfere with quality of life. For those patients, lumbar laminectomy can mean the difference between merely existing and living life to the fullest.

Once it has been determined that the patient is a candidate for a lumbar laminectomy, the hospital stay is usually a short one. “Most patients stay overnight, but some will go home the same day,” Dr. Brown says. “A few may stay longer, depending on their medical needs. “The procedure involves going to sleep under general anesthesia,” Dr. Brown says. “The muscles are elevated off the bone to be removed, followed by removal of the lamina (the bone that forms a ‘roof’ for the spinal canal) and underlying ligament.” Most patients report improvement in their symptoms after waking from anesthesia, although it takes a few days or weeks for some. “Your back will be sore for a few days, but for most patients the operative pain has improved or resolved within a week,” Dr. Brown says. Spinal stenosis may develop or become symptomatic at any age, but is most frequently diagnosed in older patients – often people who are ready to enjoy retirement and want to remain active. Successful lumbar laminectomy can allow them to keep moving and stay involved in their favorite pastimes. To learn more about spine surgery at Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center, visit www. fsregional.com or call 865- 331-2835.

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South Knox Shopper news • March 22, 2017 • A-3

Kelley DeLuca, president of the Lindbergh Forest NeighborConnie Barker, president of the Knox County Council of Garden Clubs, installed officers for the Chapman Highway Garden Club: hood Association, speaks at a workshop on engaging neighJan Brown, Carol Linger, Molly Gilbert, Fran Brown and Dede Wilkerson. Not pictured is Dianne Forry. Photo submitted bors.

Neighborhood Conference received the award posthumously in 2013.

From page A-1

■■ New garden club officers

■■ SoKno Taco grand opening

The Chapman Highway Garden Club installed new officers at its monthly meeting Mayors Madeline Rogero and Tim Burlast week. chett will be on hand to help SoKno Taco Connie Barker, president of the Knox Cantina celebrate its grand opening at 4:30 County Council of Garden Clubs, officiated p.m. Friday, March 31. as Jan Brown was installed as president, The new South Haven eatery is already Carol Linger as vice president, Molly Gildoing booming business. The restaurant bert as recording secretary, Dianne Forry is at 3701 Sevierville Pike, with additional as corresponding secretary, Fran Brown as parking one block away at Baker Creek Pretreasurer and Dede Wilkerson as chaplain. serve, 3700 Lancaster Drive.

Mayor Madeline Rogero, second from left, who lives in South Knoxville, poses with SoKno nominees for the Diana Conn Good Neighbor of the Year Award: Linda Rust, Janet Tocher and Terry Caruthers. Not pictured is Grant Barton. Photos by Betsy Pickle

Nick Della Volpe

From page A-1

fast food and a refrigerator 15 feet from our easy chair, we have become a one-trick pony. Flooded with repeated insulin releases, we develop insulin resistance, and can store excess in the second fuel tank, but not use it up. You can’t burn both fuels at the same time. What to do? After another six years of working with kidney and other patients using interim fasting, Dr. Fung was able to help people to lose and keep off weight, and drop or reduce their diabetes and blood pressure medications. He focuses on the root cause (excess insulin and resulting insulin resistance over time), not the symptom of weight gain. His busy patients had trouble following a strict low-carb regimen (a good thing) or to part from their starchy comfort foods. The medical/ dietitian community was falsely preaching low-fat everything, but that was unproven

and he says incorrect. The easier/ wiser course was to have them eat nothing, using an interim fasting regime (periodic fasting of 12, 24, or 48 hours), once or twice a week, being careful to have them remain fully hydrated (water, tea, coffee). Longer clinical fasts are also presented. Since no drug company or food manufacturer makes money on this, it may take a while to take hold. But it works. A fast helps reset one’s basal metabolism so your body does not return to its former rotund self (homeostasis lowers body temp, heart rate and “normal” metabolism to conserve energy). Avoid seesaw diet disasters. Dr. Fung has given us a clear guide for action. A body having exhausted its glucose stores is free to burn fat. With healthy foods on regular days, a fast once or twice a week will get you to your goal. Read the books and stay hydrated.

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Randy Boyd “UT was a little different. I was paying my own way through college, and you could get 22 (credit) hours for the same price as 14. So when you’re paying your own way and you’re cheap, you sign up for as many hours as you can get. And if you take 22 hours every quarter, you graduate early.” Boyd commuted from home in South Knoxville till he graduated, at which point he rented an apartment in West Knoxville. He eventually started Radio Systems Corp. and became one of the most successful businessmen in the state. In 2012, Gov. Bill Haslam talked Boyd into serving (unpaid) as a higher-education consultant for the state. He later served two years as commissioner of Economic and Community Development, resigning last month. Working in Nashville – with wife Jenny, their two grown sons and his rescued dachs-

From page A-1 hund in Knoxville – was hard for Boyd. “One of the things I look forward to in this campaign is that Jenny gets to travel with me, and in most cases the dog will travel with me. When I get elected governor, we’ll share the same house together in Nashville. We’ll still come back to Knoxville to see our boys from time to time, but Nashville will be my home for that period of time.” In 2011, Jenny opened Boyd’s Jig & Reel in the Old City, and her husband says she doesn’t plan to desert it. “Jenny’s plan is to continue to be there, at least on Tuesday nights,” he says. “That’s when they have old-time jams. She loves being at the pub and playing with her friends, playing her fiddle. So that’s our compromise. Mondays and Tuesdays she’ll probably be in Knoxville, and then come over on Wednesday morning.”


A-4 • March 22, 2017 • South Knox Shopper news

Women’s group stocks Ronald McDonald House pantry

Addie Bailey loads bags of sugar into a cart at Food City to help Ronald McDonald House. Addie and her mom, Stephanie, were just two of many from the Knox County Farm Bureau Women’s Group purchasing food. Addie’s mom is a member of the group, and both of her great-grandmothers were very involved in the organization. Photos by Ruth White

Members of the Knox County Farm Bureau Women’s Group joined together (and with friends) for Food Link Day to benefit Ronald McDonald House and help stock the pantries with food items. The group delivered $1,000 worth of non-perishable items to RMH. Pictured at the shopping event were Jerry Hixson, Kerri Thompson, Vella Underwood, Mildred Thompson, Teresa Bones, Tonya Phillips, Brenda Williams, Stephanie Bailey, Kim Holden, John Fugate and Pam Stoutt. Pictured under the carts are helpers Lucas Thompson and Addie Bailey.

DIY can be a don’t By Betsy Pickle

The do-it-yourself movement has every homeowner thinking he or she can tackle nearly any home repair – and save a little money in the process. TV shows, magazines and Pinterest make it look simple. The reality is, certain projects are best left to a professional. Dan Mitchell, president of the Home Builders Association of Greater Knoxville, says to think of your body as a home. You can treat some ailments with over-the-counter meds, but you’d never perform surgery on yourself. Here are some DIY don’ts: Tree removal: A homeowner might be able to cut smaller trees, 12-15 feet in height. With taller trees, even with a couple of people working, “there’s a danger of the tree falling in the wrong direction, causing damage to a structure or an individual. Also, there’s brush and material you have to contend with.” Mitchell says that for safety, hire a professional, at least to fell the tree. Home addition or structural changes: Unless the homeowner has “a strong construction background,” this gets a big “no” from Mitchell, a thirdgeneration contractor and owner of Eagle

CDI in Seymour. Such work usually requires permits, and most municipalities require you to have a contractor who knows what is needed legally and will follow code requirements. Paving your driveway: “No brainer,” says Mitchell. The job requires specialty equipment to pour the asphalt or put concrete down and trained workers to get a uniform and smooth appearance in a timely manner. Homeowners can patch small sections with materials from Home Depot or Lowe’s. Electrical work: “Again, that’s a no brainer. Any full-fledged electrical project where you’re reaching inside the meter base

or dealing with the high-voltage current that’s inside – your meter box, breakers and so forth – we recommend getting a professional out there.” Projects such as installing a ceiling fan, changing a light fixture, adding a light switch or dimmer or adding a wall outlet can be done by the homeowner “with instructions from Home Depot or Lowe’s or YouTube.” Plumbing repairs: DIYers can replace a faucet, as long as they have proper tools, Mitchell says. For bigger things, such as installing a new water heater, repairing a sewer line, or getting inside a wall cavity to repair a leak, call a plumber. Roof repair: This is “one of those things that we always recommend you hire a professional. … More people are admitted to the hospital annually than car accidents from getting up on a roof.” Safety is paramount, but liability is another issue.

When you hire someone, make sure they have the insurance to cover both property and medical claims. Installing siding: Mitchell says this isn’t necessarily a difficult task. “However, unless you have two or three people to assist you in an expeditious fashion, you are exposing the house to rain or other elements. … Most do-it-yourselfers are not quick.” Adding or replacing windows: Again, you’re exposing your house to the elements. And Mitchell says window projects require knowledge of structural loads and sometimes electrical and plumbing. Plus, you have to remove and replace trim, and there may be siding to put back on. Creating an outdoor kitchen: Mitchell says, “There are some projects out there with pavers and stackable blocks that DIYers can do. The only area of caution truly is, what are you using for a cooking source?” A standalone grill with a propane tank is one thing, but for those who want built-in gas, “you should never do anything with a gas line unless you’re a professional,” he says. Homeowners should remember that hiring professionals also means that someone else is responsible for the warranties and liability of the work. Also, when you try to sell your house, amateur work will be easily detected. “The money you saved in the beginning could be money you lose in the resale of your home,” Mitchell says.

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South Knox Shopper news • March 22, 2017 • A-5

Eusebia Presbyterian offers disaster plan event By Kelly Norrell Eusebia Presbyterian Church, 1701 Burnett Station Road in Seymour, wants every person and church in East Tennessee to have something new for spring – a disaster plan. On Saturday, April 1, from 10 until noon, the church will host a free workshop, “Be Prepared for Disaster,” for anyone who wants to come. You do not have to be a Presbyterian or belong to any church. Three trained volunteers from the Presbyterian Disaster Assistance National Response Team and one staff member from the UT Extension Service will help churches and individuals begin preparing individualized plans to deal with emergency. The idea for the workshop came right after the Gatlinburg fire, said the Rev. Jean Davidson, Eusebia Presbyterian pastor. “Presbyterian Disaster Assistance was speaking to a group. They said, ‘This is a good time for people to think about preventing disaster.’ “When the fires were so close to us, I thought about what I would take if I had to evacuate. When we hear about disasters, we tend to think, ‘That could never happen to me,’” Davidson said. The common denominator of disaster is that it takes us off-guard, be it fire, flood, tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes or high

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The Rev. Jean Davidson, Eusebia Presbyterian pastor: “When we hear about disasters, we tend to think, ‘That could never happen to me.’” winds that blow off the roof. Emergency may take the form of dangerous intruders, accidents that occur on trips, or the death of a loved one. Families and churches are typically underprepared, said Lynette Williams of Hillsboro, N.C., a workshop speaker. “So in the workshops, we start with what we call Disaster 101. This is the cycle that disaster aftermath goes through.” She said recovery from disaster is usually a long-term process that may take years. Topics will include how to begin a preparation plan

mollygilbert@yahoo.com.

■■ Commissioner Carson Dailey will hold an “Ask the Commissioner” meeting 5-7 p.m. Tuesday, March 28, at Love that BBQ, 1901 Maryville Pike. ■■ South Knox Republican Club. Info: Kevin Teeters, kevin teeters018@gmail.com. ■■ Colonial Village Neighborhood Association. Info: Terry Caruthers, 865-579-5702, t_caruthers@hotmail.com. ■■ Knoxville Chapter of the Tennessee Firearms Association. Info: Liston Matthews, 865-316-6486.

■■ Lindbergh Forest Neighborhood Association. Info: Kelley DeLuca, 865-660-4728, kelleydeluca@gmail.com. ■■ Old Sevier Community Group. Info: Gary E. Deitsch, 865-573-7355 or garyedeitsch@bellsouth.net.

and what should be in it, including suggestions from the American Red Cross and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). “We’ve found that if individuals have a plan, it is much easier for them to think about creating a plan for a church or other institution,” Williams said.

We don’t think about idolatry in our modern society. When we hear the word, our tendency is to associate it with someone else – not ourselves – but some other person, some other country, some other denomination, or some other religion. Perhaps Lent is a season to examine our own idolatries, painful as it is. What would you have trouble giving up for 40 days? Meat? Golf? Candy? Facebook? Gossip? Whatever it is, it is an idol. (Obviously, there are things one should not give up for health reasons: breathing, eating, sleeping, bathing.) But if you can’t give up a soft drink or a hot dog or a certain TV show, maybe you should consider what is important to you. What is your idol? Be honest! Another decision you will need to make is de-

Endangered 8 nominations open The East Tennessee Preservation Alliance (ETPA) is now accepting nominations for the 2017 East Tennessee Endangered 8, a listing of the eight most threatened historic sites in our region. The objective of the list is to inform our communities about the real threat of losing these important sites to development, demolition or lack of maintenance as well as the value of what will be lost if action isn’t taken soon to avoid their destruction. Nominations are due by March 30 and are accepted for sites at least 50 years old and located in Anderson, Blount, Campbell, Claiborne, Cocke, Grainger, Hamblen, Jefferson, Knox, Loudon, Monroe, Morgan, Roane, Scott, Sevier and Union counties. The 2017 East Tennessee Endangered 8 will be announced May 1 to kick off National Preservation Month. Info/nomination form: knoxheritage.org/ETPA.

Cross Currents

Lynn Pitts

ciding what positive thing you are going to do in place of the habit or activity you have given up. Instead of playing golf, perhaps you could volunteer in a soup kitchen. Instead of eating a piece of pie, you could bake a pie and take it to a retirement home. Instead of reading a book at home, read to a group of senior citizens. Instead of complaining about the kids next door who left their bike in your yard, invite them to a story time. Word of advice: don’t talk about what you have sacrificed, what good works you have done. The Lord knows. No one else needs to.

DNA and genealogy workshop is Saturday Dr. George K. Schweitzer, a UT professor of chemistry, will present “Autosomal DNA for Genealogy” 1-3 p.m. Saturday, March 25, at the East Tennessee History Center, 601 S. Gay St. Schweitzer will explain how information from a DNA test can be used in conjunction with genealogical research to trace ancestors through the past five generations. The workshop is free. Info: 865-215-8824 or easttnhistory. org.

■■ South of the River Democrats (9th District). Info: Debbie Helsley, 865-789-8875, or Brandon Hamilton, 865809-3685. ■■ South Woodlawn Neighborhood Association. Info: Shelley Conklin, 865-686-6789.

■■ Knoxville Tri-County Lions Club. Info: facebook.com/ tricountylions/info. ■■ Lake Forest Neighborhood Association. Info: Molly Gilbert, 865-209-1820 or

■■ Vestal Community Organization. Info: Katherine Johnson, 865-566-1198.

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■■ South Haven Neighborhood Association. Info: Pat Harmon, 865-591-3958.

■■ South-Doyle Neighborhood Association. Info: Mark Mugford, 865-609-9226 or marksidea@aol.com.

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Wayne Clatterbuck of UT Extension will tell participants how to prepare their homes, even through landscaping, to lessen the impact of disaster. Churches are as susceptible to disaster as families, Williams said. “The most important thing is communication, contacting members and checking on their safety.” She said churches should keep a copy of their records offsite or online, have a plan for contacting members if the power is out, and pinpoint a place to meet if the church is damaged or destroyed. She said there are simple things every church can do to radically improve preparedness, like posting maps showing the exits and making sure exits aren’t blocked. “We hope that when they leave the workshop, everyone will have the seeds planted for a family disaster plan and the beginning of a church plan,” Williams said. Davidson said pre-registration is requested but not required. To register, email her at rev2jean@gmail.com or call 865-982-6332.

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A-6 • March 22, 2017 • South Knox Shopper news

The staff of the enchanted castle discuss whether Belle can break the spell on them and the Beast. Pictured are Mme. de la Grande Bouche (Hallie Boring), Babette (Isabelle Hannah), Mrs. Maurice (Keegan Spurr) and Belle (Emma Lesniewski) discuss his newest invention during a Potts (Olivia Wilson) and Chip (Cate Harper). scene of Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast Jr.” at the Knoxville Children’s Theatre. Photos by Ruth White

‘Beauty and Beast Jr.’ leaves audiences enchanted By Ruth White The Knoxville Children’s Theatre recently presented Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast Jr.,” and if you were able to purchase tickets, you were one of the lucky ones. The performances ran Feb. 24-March 12, and almost every show was sold out. The cast members are students from all over Knox County and several from Sevier County, and their performances had audience members laughing, clapping and singing

along to the tunes made popular with the animated movie from 1991. Starring as Belle was Emma Lesniewski, a junior at South-Doyle High School. She has appeared in seven KCT plays and enchanted audiences with her performance in this play. Keegan Spurr played her sweet father, Maurice. He is an eighth-grade student at Grace Christian Academy. Cast members inside the castle included Keegan Stump, a ninthgrader at Bearden High, as the

Beast; Olivia Wilson, a junior at Bearden High, as Mrs. Potts; Cate Harper, a third-grade student at Rocky Hill Elementary, as Chip; Isabelle Hannah, a ninth-grader at West High, as Babette the duster; Hallie Boring, an eighthgrader at Maryville Junior High, as Mme. de la Grande Bouche; Simeon Thress, a sophomore at River’s Edge Christian Academy, as Lumiere; and Derrick Washington Jr., a sophomore at L&N STEM Academy, as the very ani-

Gaston (center, played by Ethan Turbyfill) gets the townsfolk scared and eager to kill the beast.

mated Cogsworth. The overly self-confident Gaston was played by Ethan Turbyfill, a sophomore at Alcoa High appearing in his eighth KCT show, and sidekick LeFou was played by Joseph Corum, an eighth-grader at Halls Middle. Direction and choreography were done by Wheeler Moon, a junior at West High. Bethany Moon, a regular performer at KCT, was costumer designer, and Ruthanne Carter, a ninth-grader at

West High, was in charge of stage management. Lighting designers were Quintin Rhodes and D.J. Washington, and prop master was Catherine Blevins. Up next at KCT is “The Miracle Worker,” the Tony-winning classic story of Helen Keller. This performance is for audiences ages 6 and up and will run from Friday, March 31, through Sunday, April 16. Visit knoxvillechildrenstheatre.com for show times and ticket information.

Belle (Emma Lesniewski) is invited to dinner by the Beast (Keegan Stump) as Cogsworth (Derrick Washington Jr.) and Lumiere (Simeon Thress) anticipate her answer.

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South Knox Shopper news • March 22, 2017 • A-7

If I lived in the White House By Kip Oswald When I was in second grade, I remember saying I wanted to be president of the United States when I grew up. After reading about all the First Kids, Kip I should have said I wanted Mom to be president so I could be a First Kid. Being a kid in the White House sounds like the most fun I can possibly dream about. Imagine a house with 132 rooms and 35 bathrooms! It also has 28 fireplaces, eight staircases and three elevators! Since Mom hates to cook, I told her about the five full-time chefs to cook all the meals. She could have as many as 140 guests at one time, which would definitely cover all our family and friends. Of course, if she were president, I am sure more family and friends would come around! Being that huge, it is no wonder the White House was called the President’s Palace and the Executive Mansion before it was given the name White House in 1901. The White House has so many activities for the president’s family and guests that you would never have to leave the property. The White House has a tennis court that was first built in 1902 behind the West Wing but was moved to the west side of the South Lawn in 1909. There is a heated indoor swimming pool built in 1933 for Franklin D. Roosevelt. He

REUNIONS ■■ Gibbs High Class of 1967 50th reunion, Saturday, April 1. Info: Nancy Breeding, 865256-2526.

UT NOTES ■■ Dr. Delbert J. “DJ” Krahwinkel, Professor Emeritus, College of Veterinary Medi-

Downsizing with flair at Northshore Town Center By Betsy Pickle

also built a movie theater in 1942 inside a coatroom where the president and his guests watch first-run movies. My family would never leave the house if we lived there because we are always at the movies or watching Netflix. In 1947, bowling lanes were built as a birthday present for President Harry Truman. President Dwight Eisenhower installed a putting green in 1954, and in 1975 an in-ground outdoor swimming pool was built on the grounds. A quarter-mile jogging track was installed around the south drive in 1993 by President Bill Clinton because when he jogged outside the White House, it disrupted Washington traffic. Oh, the games my friends and I could play in that house! I was telling my sister, Kinzy, about the size of the White House. She commented how cool it would be to have a prom there, and then I found that President Gerald Ford actually allowed his daughter to have her high school prom in the White House. Now that is amazing! I read that ever since John Adams, the first president to live in the White House, moved into the house, each president has been able to make his own changes to the house. Each First Family decorates the house how they want and decides how they want to receive visitors. Over the next months, we will learn some of the fun facts and interesting tidbits I have found on each of our presidents. Send comments to oswaldsworldtn@gmail. com cine, has been awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Tennessee Veterinary Medical Association (TVMA).

CALL FOR ARTISTS ■■ Knoxville Photo 2017 Exhibition; deadline for entries: Sunday, April 23. Info/entry form/application: knoxalliance.com/knoxvillephoto-entry.

Beth Donnell always wanted to live in a big city where she could walk to stores and restaurants. She found her “city” at builder Mike Stevens’ Northshore Town Center. Beth and husband Bill moved into the development overlooking Northshore Elementary School in October. They’d checked out the neighborhood for years, but they waited until their children were grown before they made the plunge. “We are just recently empty-nesters,” says Donnell. “We wanted a smaller house, but we wanted a house with a lot of personality. “So we moved here mainly because Mike was a builder who was willing to let us have a lot of say and influence.” At 2,400 square feet, their home is smaller than their previous one, “but it lives bigger than the house we were in before.” Realtor Marquita Stevens, wife of Mike Stevens, says that can be credited mostly to Beth Donnell’s ideas. “I think what’s so cool about this house is all the creative spacing,” says Stevens. The airy foyer not only invites guests in off the front porch, it also serves as home for the Donnells’ piano. The main level features an open space that incorporates family, dining and kitchen areas. “I don’t think anybody in here has a living room,” says Stevens. “Most people don’t have formal dining rooms. Most people want mainlevel living, all open spaces, with the ability to have company come upstairs. This house nailed it.” “I like really clean lines, and I want it to be casual, not messy,” says Donnell. “I do not love to clean house, so that kind of drives my style. I just like it to be simple and calming when I come home.” Her favorite area is the kitchen and its expansive island, which has seating for six and vast storage space. The main level also has the master bedroom and bath, a mudroom and laundry room.

Upstairs are two bedrooms, each with a full bath, and a sitting room with board games on shelves to the side of the flat-screen TV. Although both children are out of the house, they still have their own rooms, reflecting their personalities. Northshore Town Center will have a neighborhood block party 4-8 p.m. Saturday, March 25, with music and food trucks. The public is invited. New homes will also be on display during an open house 1-5 p.m. Sun- The Donnell home in Northshore Town Center presents a day, March 26. friendly face to neighbors. Photos submitted

The dining table is for holidays and parties; the Donnells use the kitchen island for daily meals and hanging out.

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A-8 • March 22, 2017 • South Knox Shopper news

The Rotary guy

Bill Gates to speak to 40,000 Rotarians By Tom King Busloads

and packed cars from K nox v ille and District 6780 will head down I-75 for the 2017 Rotary International Convention in AtTom King lanta, June 10-14. This will be Rotary’s 108th convention – its third in Atlanta – and more than 40,000 Rotarians from 160 countries will be there. The convention will be at the Georgia World Congress Center, and its lineup of world-class speakers is led by the event’s keynoter, Bill Gates. Gates and his wife, Melinda, are co-chairs of The Gates Foundation and have joined Rotary’s worldwide effort to eradicate polio forever. The Gates Foundation and Rotary are ongoing partners; Gates matches 2:1 donations by Rotarians up to $35 million a year. To date Rotary, including matching funds from the Gates, has raised

Getting closure: Old Marine returns to Vietnam By Sandra Clark

Gary Koontz, along with wife Vicki, is a one-stop real estate shop. He buys, builds and sells; he partnered in development of Fountainhead on Tazewell $1.6 billion to wipe out polio Pike, Kinley’s Kanyon in Corryton and and prevent it from coming Urban Park in West Knox. And he shows no signs of slowing back. down. In fact, he rarely leaves town, “With the so you can imagine the stretch of his most effective resourc- return to Vietnam after fighting there es in place, as a Marine some 50 years ago. Koontz traveled 9,000 miles from it’s possible home with John Becker from WBIRthat we will soon see TV, who taped a show called “Facing the last case Ghosts.” The 8-part series is available of polio in online at wbir.com Bill Gates Catching up at Litton’s, Gary said history. At the visit was not what he expected. the convention, Bill will say The people were welcoming and the more about how we can – and will – end polio,” said country looked prosperous. There John Germ, Rotary Interna- were no signs of the war that claimed tional’s president from Chat- more than a million lives of soldiers and civilians and forced the retiretanooga. ment of President Lyndon Johnson. ■■ ‘Hold ’Em’

fundraiser

The Rotary Club of Turkey Creek is “holding” its Texas Hold ’Em for Service Fundraiser on Friday, May 5, at Southeast Bank (12700 Kingston Pike). Tickets are $50 a seat (includes dinner, and a seat/ chips in the tournament). A portion of the money raised will be used to honor a past president of the club, Ann Lotspeich. Tickets are being sold via Eventbrite. Tickets: http://bit.ly/2nrHEwc

CFA cat show this weekend The 40th annual CFA AllBreed Cat Show will be 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, March 25-26, at the Jacob Building in Chilhowee Park. The show is presented by the Tennessee Valley Cat Fanciers Inc., and features cats and kittens from across the country competing for “Best in Show” in each of 10 judging rings; vendors with cat-theme novelty items, grooming supplies, great toys and cat trees; and more. General admission: $6 adults, $4 students and seniors. Info: tennesseevalleycatfanciersinc.com.

Koontz rented a car and hired a driver to take him to his old base north of Da Nang. He was sure he could drive straight to it, but time and the jungle had reclaimed the spot. He drove on steep mountain roads, now protected with guardrails. One narrow pass where the enemy often set ambushes now features a small store, selling snacks and souvenirs. Asked if the trip “brought closure,” the old Marine said he found closure the day he left the fight to head home. He used words roughly translated: “I’m outta here and these people can kiss my rear end.” Vicki Koontz said Gary should realize that he did find his battlefield. “But guess what? Nothing’s there but peace.”

Gary Koontz today and as a 19-yearold Marine.

Painful truth about lawn mowing By Carol Z. Shane

It’s not what lawn aficionados want to hear, but here’s the truth: “Most people cut their grass as short as possible, and then wait to cut again until it’s as long as possible,” says Paul Dickinson, a landscape designer with Earthadelic, the local full-service landscaping contractor. Unfortunately, that’s the worst thing you can do. “You want longer grass so that weed seeds are less likely to germinate. And you want to mow every three days, and just take a little off each time.” Dickinson admits that “nobody wants to hear this; the truth hurts! It’s like when someone wants to lose weight – nobody wants to hear ‘eat less and exercise more.’” Over at Mayo Garden Center in Bearden, Claxton

Claxton Mayo of Mayo Garden Centers, on a stand-up lawnmower.

Mayo has plenty ideas for helping with lawn maintenance. As a fourth-generation owner of the store, which was started on Gay Street by his great-grandfather in 1878, he keeps an eye on the trends and knows what his customers want. For the past few years they have wanted zeroturning-radius commercialgrade mowers – those fastmoving, wide-cut vehicles you see professional crews using. They come in stand-upon, stand-behind and riding versions. “I’d say 60 percent of commercial riders go to homeowners.” There are good reasons. The mowers are built to last. “There’s not as much upkeep, and they’re tougher,” says Mayo. And when you’re ready to downgrade and move into

a condo, the resale value is good.” The drive speed and zero-turning radius feature is usually controlled by a lever system. Some customers, says Mayo, balk at the levers, saying they prefer a steering wheel. The levers do take some getting used to, but are much better ergonomically, and suitable for all ages, all strengths. “I sold one two years ago to a fellow who lived up in LaFollette,” says Mayo. “He said, ‘When my father-inlaw sees this he’s going to want one!’ The father-in-law came in the next week and bought one. He was 97 years old. That’s my record as far as getting up in age.” Mayo says the mowers are fast, and they maneuver well. A homeowner using the same cutting width as a regular push mower can finish the lawn in half the time.


South Knox Shopper news • March 22, 2017 • A-9

Basketball outlook similar to past By Marvin West Tennessee basketball is now two weeks in the general direction of next year, No. 3-to-be for Rick Barnes. Wouldn’t it be great to believe good times are just around the corner. Through my binoculars, the outlook appears much like the past. I hope I am wrong. The coach said the team that failed in February just wasn’t tough enough, physically or mentally. Fixing that is part of the coach’s job. Careful now. Some psyches are fragile. Shooting stats made me wonder if the Vols were trying to hit a moving target. Tennessee was No. 282 in America in field goal percentage. It was 301 in threepointers. The coach is in charge of shooting. In truth, 16-16 against a good schedule and 8-10 in the Southeastern Conference (if you don’t count the tournament loss) fits Barnes’ recent pattern. In his last four years at Texas, his conference record was 35-37. That’s why he is at Tennessee. But wait, you say, 8-10 exceeded expectations. Indeed it did, by a basket or two. Experts predicted UT would be next to last in the league. They erred. Effort alone made the team better

Marvin West

than that. For much of the season, the Vols were fun to watch, even with flaws. They started some games as if they didn’t know when was tipoff. They blew big leads but never quit. February was fatal. Scoring sagged into the 50s. Shooting percentages slipped into the 30s. These were hints of exhaustion. Opponents may actually have read scouting reports and adjusted to what Tennessee could do. The Vols had no place to go. There was no inside game. Likely 2018 problems: There is no projected SEC star. No not one. Grant Williams is interesting. If he were two or three inches taller, he wouldn’t be here. He’d be engrossed in March madness. Tennessee does not have even a mid-level post player. No matter what you hear, there is a place for a good big man. For some strange reason, young point guards did not develop as expected. The

coach seemed surprised. He never stopped searching. The combination of disappointment and no answer means adequate floor leadership is yet to be confirmed. No question about defensive deficiencies. Guards couldn’t guard guards. There is no more Robert Hubbs, dearly departed senior. He exceeded a thousand points but left us wondering what might have been. If the roster holds, Tennessee will have no scholarship seniors, three juniors, four sophomores, two important redshirt freshmen and at least one newcomer who might make a difference. Barnes may know which player or players will provide leadership. I don’t. Well, Admiral Schofield and Williams might. The coach may know who will start. I don’t. Williams is one good bet. He was a delight in some games. He will be offered video seminars in what SEC officials are likely to consider a foul. Jordan Bone has talent and a lot to learn. If Jordan Bowden is going to be a key shooter, he must gain consistency. If John Fulkerson really gets well, if Jalen Johnson gains endurance, if, if, if. It would be almost won-

derful if Tennessee could become a championship contender. John Currie would order the removal of covers that hide empty upper-level seats at Thompson-Boling arena. Enthusiastic crowds would provide a home-court advantage. Foes would fear the Volunteers. Think how much young players must improve for that to happen. Consider the difference in three-star recruits and what top teams sign. Incoming Zack Kent, a project in rivals’ eyes, is 6-10 until remeasured. Derrick Walker, 6-8, says he will bring toughness and fast-motor. The scholarship that once belonged to Detrick Mostella goes to 6-6 young Frenchman Yves Pons. Interesting story: born in Haiti (Port-au-Prince), adopted at age 4 by a French couple, surprisingly mature at 17, genuine international experience, great potential but not nearly ready for prime time. Thank goodness Barnes, 63 in July, still sees the future. He has tournament history, 22 NCAA appearances. One thought related to returns: A couple of better, bigger players would speed up the process. Tell the recruiters. Marvin West invites reader reactions. His address is westwest6@netzero.com

Could city council become all white? The map of Knoxville City Council’s sixth district looks like a cartoon drawing of a long-nosed, pointyheaded man stretched out on an east/ west axis from Burlington to Lonsdale, nose pointed south. The district was drawn to encomBob Booker pass Knoxville’s African-American neighborhoods and business districts in 1969 with one clear objective in mind: “So that a black person would stand a chance,” said Knoxville historian and longtime political activist Bob Booker, who, thanks to a similar redistricting in 1966, was serving in the state Legislature when the city redistricting took place. “To give us a seat at the table,” said Rick Staples, who occupies the state House seat that Booker pioneered. Same thing happened when the old County Court morphed into the modern day County Commission a few years later, and minority citizens have been electing minority officeholders ever since. The few African-Americans who have sought other seats

Betty Bean have had no luck, to date. But now, Booker and other East Knoxville community leaders are growing apprehensive, as shifting populations and evolving voting patterns are changing the district’s makeup. Downtown is booming and Parkridge is growing. In last year’s elections, turnout in those precincts swamped that of the traditional black wards. “We are in danger of losing our representation,” Booker said. “I’ve said that some time ago about all of our seats. All of those positions (the sixth district council seat, the first district commission seat and the 15th district state House seat) are in danger. And there are several reasons for this: “Number one, black people don’t vote. Number two, the population is changing. I look at all these new apartment buildings downtown – the White Lily Building, Marble Alley – everywhere I look there are new apartments, and not one percent of them will have black occupants.”

And with the deadline to turn in qualifying petitions to run for city council still two months away, all signs point to an old-fashioned throwdown in District 6, where 10 aspiring candidates – three white and seven black – had picked up petitions by St. Patrick’s Day, with rumors of many more waiting in the wings. Knox County Administrator of Elections Cliff Rodgers is elated with the heightened candidate interest and hopes that it will translate into increased voter participation. He is frustrated, however, that turnout will be depressed because the 12,458 voters registered in the city’s fifth

Clement to speak at History Center Bob Clement, former TVA director and member of Congress, will be in Knoxville at 6:30 p.m. Friday, March 24, at the East Tennessee History Center, 601 S. Gay Street. Admission is free and the public is invited. Clement will speak about his new book, “Presidents, Kings and Convicts: My Journey from the Tennessee Governor’s Residence to the Halls of Congress.” Books will be available for purchase and signing. Clement’s father, Frank G. Clement, was governor of Tennessee for 10 years, from 1953-59 and from 1963-67. Bob Clement served eight terms in the U.S. Congress.

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district (Mark Campen) won’t be voting in the primary – their representative runs in off-year elections with the three at-large council members. Add this anomaly to the district-only primaries and citywide general elections, and Rodgers is not the only one with concerns. “I never did like the way it was done – nominated in the district, voted on citywide. Better than nothing, I guess,” Booker said, pointing out the void in black representation on city council between 1912 when Dr. Henry Morgan Green left office and 1969 when Theotis Robinson Jr. took office.

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last words Jones must overcome history to win Sheriff Jimmy “J.J.” Jones will be a credible candidate for county mayor, if he runs, and will keep Commissioner Bob Thomas and perhaps Glenn Jacobs, if he enters the race, busy. However, Jones will need to overcome the impression that he is only a sheriff. Three previous sheriffs tried to transition to executive or legislative office in Knox County and failed. They were Archie Weaver for city mayor in 1965, Bernard Waggoner for state senator in 1974 and Tim Hutchison for county mayor in 2010. Democrats do not yet have a credible candidate, and the GOP primary in May 2018 will decide who the next county mayor will be. It also appears that Sherry Witt, register of deeds, and state Rep. Roger Kane will oppose each other for county clerk to follow Foster Arnett Jr., who is term limited, also in the May 2018 primary. This means there will be a new register of deeds and a new state representative. ■■ More information is coming out on the search for the new UT athletic director, which resulted in John Currie being hired. It seems the six-member search committee may have interviewed only two candidates, Currie and Phillip Fulmer. David Blackburn at UT Chattanooga was interviewed by the search firm, paid $75,000 for its work, but did not make it to the actual search committee. The six-member search committee had no black members and only one woman, Donna Thomas (who works at the Athletic Department and was on the search committee that picked Beverly Davenport to be chancellor). Davenport stresses diversity but did not implement it on this high-profile committee. The Fulmer interview occurred in Nashville at the Governor’s Residence on Curtiswood Lane and included Jimmy Haslam,

Victor Ashe

brother of the governor, Peyton Manning and Chancellor Davenport. The governor was not present for the interview. A majority of the search committee also was not present. Manning favored Fulmer and Jimmy Haslam favored Currie. Davenport then flew to Manhattan, Kansas, to meet with Currie, where the job was offered. None of this is inappropriate as such, but it makes for interesting discussion about the total process. ■■ Former state Sen. Brown Ayres turns 86 on March 27. He is retired and lives in Sequoyah Hills’ Hamilton House. Judge Charles Susano turns 81 on March 25. He is longestserving current judge on the state’s civil appellate court. ■■ Randy Boyd will hold a major April 24 fundraiser in Knoxville for his campaign for governor in the August 2018 primary. State Sen. Mark Green of Clarksville, another candidate for governor, campaigned in Knoxville last week. But he will likely be nominated to be Secretary of the Army, which would remove him from the race. Green would be a very able choice for the Pentagon. ■■ State Sen. Mark Norris of Memphis may end up with a federal judgeship and depart the governor’s race, leaving only Boyd and U.S. Rep. Diane Black as the two major candidates. ■■ Jim Harter, longtime Fountain City resident and Scenic Knoxville advocate, died last week. He, along with his wife, Ann, who survives him, were dedicated advocates against billboards and appeared at many city council meetings. He will be missed.

New rule at impoundment lot Because of a change in a city ordinance to reflect state law, anyone retrieving a vehicle from the city impoundment lot will now need to present proof of insurance. State law requires all vehicle owners to have insurance. Under the revised city ordinance, anyone seeking to retrieve a vehicle from the lot on Vice Mayor Jack Sharp Road in East Knoxville must bring proof of insurance, a government-issued picture ID, a licensed driver and proof of vehicle ownership. They also must pay any fees for towing and storage at the lot. The impoundment lot is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, but vehicles are only released between 8 a.m. and midnight.

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A-10 • March 22, 2017 • South Knox Shopper news

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