Matt Popovich

Red Devil boys win first round playoff game

The Red Devil boys varsity basketball team held a healthy lead over their Swansea High School competition throughout Tuesday night’s first round postseason battle. Both teams left it all on the court, but in the end the Swansea Tiger boys fell to the Devils, 55-43.

Although the team played well on both sides of the ball, Head Coach Romon Gray said after the game it was his athlete’s defensive skills, specifically their ability to successfully execute half-court traps, which tipped the scales in the favor of Wade Hampton.

Spring sports nearing

The Wade Hampton High School Red Devils have been busy on the diamond and soccer pitch after school has ended for the day. As well as changing weather, several WHHS teams have acquired new coaches, including baseball and j.v. ladies soccer.

County given Needs Assessment, Williams honored

Former Hampton County Council Chairman Shedron Williams received an award for his service to the county Monday, Feb. 6, during a regularly scheduled Hampton County Council meeting. Williams, the first African-American Hampton County Council Chairman, was given a commemorative plaque and received praise from fellow council members for his dedication to the county during his time as chairman.

HCSO promotes three officers

The Hampton County Sheriff’s Office recently recognized three officers during a promotion ceremony. Sergeant Craig Smith was promoted to Lieutenant, Corporal Timothy Sutton was promoted to Sergeant, and Corporal Will Rivers was promoted to Sergeant. Sheriff T.C. Smalls congratulated the officers for their role in leadership, ability, support and dedication to the HCSO within their respective divisions.

Biographies

$587,500 in grants announced during HD1 board meeting

During a Jan. 23 school board meeting held at North District Middle School, Hampton School District 1 announced that Project Coordinator Rhonda Willis helped procure a $577,500 grant for the district. Along with the news of the sizable grant, a plea for an increased focus on the arts within Hampton District 1, and public schools nationally, was made by NDMS music teacher Carlotta Geizer.

21st Century grant

Hampton County natives draft school charter

According to Veronica Rea, Chair of the Palmetto Classical Charter School committee, and Cameron Runyan, committee member, their quest is to offer a viable education option for the parents of Hampton County students. With an anticipated start date of August, 2018, the fully public charter school will offer a classical model of education.

“The classical model of education has produced some of the greatest minds of Western civilization,” said Runyan.

“Heroic” Relay 4 Life Kickoff held

The American Cancer Society hosted a successful kickoff ceremony for the 2017 Hampton County Relay for Life fundraising event. The theme of this year’s event lineup is fitting of such an organization: “Be a Hero.”

Information and updates were announced for both last year’s event and this year’s upcoming cancer awareness and fundraising benefit. Emcee’s Christy Ferguson and Wendy Pollitzer informed the full house that the 2017 Relay for Life walk will be held at the Wade Hampton High School May 19 from 6 p.m. until 2 a.m.

Hampton County Airport sells first tank of fuel

Hampton County and the Hampton County Airport Commission proudly sold their first tank of fuel to pilot Ray Ward at the Hampton County Airport last weekend. Following Ward’s departure Saturday, approximately 10 planes have taxied to the pump. This is the first time the airport has offered fuel for sale to pilots and marks a turning point for the future of the airport. The construction/installation of several new airplane hangars is the next project slated to take place at the airport. Photos courtesy of Rose Dobson-Elliott, Hampton County Administrator.

Estill girls b-ball on fire

The Estill High School basketball teams were at home Friday, Jan. 20 as they went back and forth with the Williston-Elko Blue Devils boys and girls. The Estill Lady Gators stayed ahead of their competition throughout all four quarters of play.

Heading into the third quarter of action during Friday’s matchup, the girls were ahead of their opponent 20-6. By the end of the third, the Gator girls had increased their lead to 39-14 over the Blue Devils.

40-year lease divides county council 3-2

Hampton County Council members Shedron Williams and Ronald Winn were not in agreement with three of their fellow council members during the Jan. 17 second reading of an ordinance offering a 30-year, plus 10-year extension, fee-in-lieu of Ad Valorem tax incentive to Southern Current, a solar power provider constructing multiple solar farms in the county. Both Williams and Winn voted against the ordinance.

“I have never seen a 40-year fee-in-lieu in my entire time on council,” said Williams. “Maybe 20 years, but certainly not 40 years.”

Chamber of Commerce Award banquet

It was a packed house at the Market Square, in Varnville, last Thursday during the Hampton County Chamber of Commerce’s annual awards banquet. A deserving group of individuals were honored by the organization for their tremendous contributions to their community.

The event began with a buffet dinner and light conversation before the awards presentation began. A group of around 75 individuals attended the event to support those who have tirelessly supported others in the community.

 

BUSINESS OF THE YEAR

Love's Travel Center a possibility for Yemassee

Yemassee Town Council was pleased to be informed by Rick Shuffield, Vice President of Real Estate and Development of Loves Travel Stops and Community Stores, of Oklahoma City, OK, of his company’s interest in constructing a large gas station/truck stop at the base of the on-ramp to I-95 South in Yemassee. As of Tuesday, 90 percent of site planning had been completed, although site planners and engineers will soon discover what cost, if any, wetland mitigation will play on the project.

Images from Estill's MLK Day Parade

The Martin Luther King Jr. Steering Committee hosted the second annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day Parade on January 15, in Estill. The parade began slightly after 11 a.m. and was enjoyed by numerous children who were excitedly awaiting candy to be tossed their way. Parents also enjoyed the opportunity to reconnect with friends and family who came home to Estill for the celebration.

Hampton County Health Dept. Grand Opening ceremony

The grand opening/ribbon cutting ceremony for the newly-renovated Hampton County Health Department occurred Friday, Jan. 13, at 10 a.m. Numerous local elected officials and individuals who work in the health field attended the event. 

Several speakers addressed the crowd of over 50 and expressed how excited they were regarding the opening of the new facility, which according to Hampton County Administrator Rose Dobson-Elliot, may have even come in under budget.

Two WHHS cheerleaders travel to London

For two Wade Hampton High School cheerleaders, the opportunity to travel with a cheerleading organization to London, England, to participate in the city’s New Year’s Day parade was an experience of a lifetime.

Kelly Farmer and Erica Jennings, 16, junior cheerleaders at WHHS, traveled with the Universal Cheerleading Association to foggy old England to participate in the parade event alongside cheerleaders from around the world. The girls represented their high school on a national stage: the parade was broadcast live via the Internet for the world to view.   

Images of Varnville house fire, eight displaced

White billowing smoke filled the air on Sparrow Road, Varnville, on Jan. 4 as structure fire completely destroyed the home of eight individuals, including four young grandchildren of the homeowner.  

Luckily no injuries were reported, although the fire destroyed nearly all of the family’s personal belongings, including irreplaceable photographs, inside the home. Although a relatively small fire, four county departments, a mandated number, responded to the blaze that began around noon.

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