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THE BAXTER BULLETIN, Mountain Home, Ark.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Yellville third-graders celebrate Earth Day YELLVILLE/From Page 1A

ON THE

the clear plastic fork stuck in a gray rock nearly impossible. Jones used the experience to teach her students about camouflage in the natural world, showing them photos of a bobcat and hiding bunnies. She explained why some fish are brightly colored on the bottom and dull on top. “So you can’t see them when you’re looking down into the water,” she said. The camouflage lesson really hit home for the boys when, after hiking, they teamed up in two lines — Blue Jays and Mockingbirds — and ran a relay race. “Our worms look like curly red, green and yellow macaroni,” Jones said. “Run down, pick up the first worm you see, run back with it and then the next bird is going to go.” A spirited race ensued.

NET Fred Berry Conservation and Education Center: http://www.agfc.com/education-class/agfc-edu-naturecenters/education-centers/crooked-creek.aspx

Out of the 22 worms collected, only one was green. “Here’s the thing about camouflage,” Jones taught the kids, “it’s difficult to see a green worm in green grass. You birds have become very, very picky. This time, you may only gather green worms.” The race was off again. It took much longer than the first relay. “This is a good example of a limiting factor,” Jones said. “How much harder was it?” “A lot!” shouted the boys. A boy exclaimed that he found a real worm. “Don’t eat it,” Jones said, good-naturedly taking the worm from the boy. “Only fourth-graders eat worms.”

Present at almost every event at the center, Fred Berry was on hand to talk with the kids. “I would like to turn kids loose and tell them to come back in time for lunch,” Berry told The Bulletin. Passionate about introducing kids to nature, Berry says he would like to coordinate the various groups that conduct nature events. “Groups like Audubon and Game & Fish,” Berry said. “I’d like to get these groups together and reach as many kids as possible, especially inner-city kids.” For information about the conservation center and its Bulletin Photo by Deb Peterson programs, call (870) 449Paul Hartz, a staff member at the Fred Berry Conservation and Education Center 3484. in Yellville, asks Yellville-Summit third-grader Kaitlin Bullock, 9, if she wants to kiss dpeterson@baxterbulletin.com the fish she just caught.

Cotter Chamber withdraws request to serve liquor COTTER/From Page 1A

dress the council about the liquor issue, withdrew his request to speak. At the end of the session, Gil Stammer, a council member and past president of the Cotter chamber, commended the chamber’s board on making the decision. He said he thought they knew the council was on a fine line of being divisive in Cotter. Stammer warned that loss of the $1,000 that alcohol sales brought in last year would have to be made up somewhere. He urged more participation of area residents in festival activities, including coming

first year it was for one night for four hours, and Flippin said the chamber went “above and beyond” what was asked of them. Last year, Flippin said, there was no trouble in the park, saying there was trouble “on both sides of us.” The chamber operated within all guidelines and did nothing illegal or immoral, he said. Flippin then said the chamber wished to withdraw its request for liquor in the park. Lynn Hutchison, who was on the agenda to ad-

to the fish fry or buying chamber merchandise for sale during the event. The Trout Festival has been moved to June 18-19 this year in an effort to have better weather and larger crowds than its past April schedule provided. The last two Cotter City Council workshop sessions have produced considerable discussion on the chamber’s request to sell alcohol in the park from 4-8 p.m. both days of the festival by citizens opposed to the sale, by chamber leaders, and by council members. On another main item of

business Thursday, several council members wanted to change the proposed ordinance raising the prices of business occupation licenses by categories in Cotter, to be effective July 1. George Peters urged not doing anything to suppress new businesses in Cotter. Peters said, “The business atmosphere is not too good, now.” Denis Dunderdale spoke against additional increases since the city has increased water and sewer charges very recently. Flippin, speaking on behalf of businesses, asked the council to table the or-

dinance for several months, at least until the fall. “Everybody is hurting now,” he said. A citizen said she didn’t know what her new rate would be under the new ordinance. Jack Burkhart suggested enacting the changes that applied to definitions of business and categories, but leaving the fees the same. An amendment was made to suspend any increase in fees and use the 2009 schedule, which are mostly $25 per business. The vote to adopt the amended occupation li-

cense ordinance was unanimous. The second reading of the proposed ordinance to raise the cost of grave spaces in Walnut Hill Cemetery was heard. It proposes raising the price from $200 to $500 for a single space and from $800 to $2000 for a four-grave plot. The third and final reading will be next month. If passed then, the new prices would be effective May 27. The council also confirmed its intent in the ordinance is to restrict burial space to residents of the city of Cotter. jnelson@baxterbulletin.com

Soccer complex construction continues SOCCER/From Page 1A

can say is the economic impact will be in the thousands of dollars,” said Ray Stahl, president of the North Central Arkansas Soccer Foundation. The tournament will host eight boys’ teams and eight girls’ teams, and each team will have between 20 to 25 players, said Mountain Home Parks and Recreation Director Billy D. Austin. He estimates with the players’ families, about 1,500 to 2,000 people will visit the area. “It will be an exciting

weekend,” Austin said. In the meantime, the city is working quickly to finish a restroom and concession facility at the site. “The concession and restrooms, along with the other part of the facility, is looking great,” Austin informed the city’s park and committee recreation Thursday. The city started the construction project about five weeks ago, after the city council approved spending up to $28,000 to make improvements at the site, officials said. The building at the soccer complex will

house concessions and a restroom with four unisex stalls and one ADA-compliant restroom, Austin said. The North Central Arkansas Foundation is providing an additional $30,000 for the improvements and scores of individuals have contributed to the project, Stahl said. “It’s going wonderfully,” Stahl said. “Through the efforts of the city, the soccer foundation and many private individuals, the work is progressing at a rapid pace.” The foundation is working closely with the city and

the Twin Lakes Soccer Association, he added. City officials also indicated steady progress is being made at the complex. The well at the site, which was recently struck by lightning, has been fixed and passed inspection by the state health department, Austin said. The city will install a chlorination system to provide potable water, city officials have said. Plumbing also passed inspection and electricity is running at the site, although more work needs to be done, Austin said. jobratton@baxterbulletin.com

Bush tells seniors college is a commitment

EL DORADO (AP) — Former President George W. Bush told El Dorado High School’s graduating seniors Thursday that they are a special group who should consider going to college a great obligation, especially those benefiting from the school’s unique scholarships. The $50 million El Dorado Promise scholarship program funded by El Doradobased Murphy Oil Corp. pays for college tuition and fees for students who spend their high school years or longer in the El Dorado School District. About 450 seniors sat at tables on the floor of the

school gym and, with their parents looking on from the bleachers, signed letters of intent to continue their education. “Some people sign contracts and it doesn’t mean anything to them,” Bush said. “It’s not just a piece of paper; it’s a commitment.” More than half of the class qualified for El Dorado Promise scholarships, and 89 percent are expected to attend college, according to the district. The El Dorado School District had been in “20 years of decline” before the scholarship program was announced three years ago,

Murphy Oil President and CEO David Wood said. Since then, enrollment has risen each year. The district says people have moved from numerous other states and foreign countries to take advantage of the program. Students who start in the district in kindergarten and stay through high school graduation receive scholarships that would cover the highest tuition charged in Arkansas, although they can use the scholarships anywhere in the United States. Students who spend less time in the district receive smaller scholarships. Bush, who wore a dark

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suit, blue tie and an American flag pin on his left lapel, was obviously relaxed. He made eye contact with students and pointed and waved. The former president was greeted warmly by the students and parents, though judging by bumper stickers in the parking lot not everyone supported him politically. Senior Jaynish Amin, a scholarship recipient, said administrators told students the event was about education, not politics. Bush had a second Arkansas appearance scheduled Thursday, an evening speech at Harding University in Searcy.

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