Farm-City 2017

CITIZEN OF THE YEAR - William Rushton, surrounded by his family, was presented the Farm-City Citizen of the Year Award by Travis Mitchell.  (Standard-Sentinel photo)

BANQUET SPEAKER - Saluda High basketball legend Al Daniel, picture with his father Charlie Sam, was the featured speaker at the Farm-City banquet. (Standard-Sentinel photo)

Rushton Named Farm-City Citizen Of The Year

  William Rushton, a longtime Saluda County banker and farmer, was named the Saluda County Farm-City Citizen of the Year at the annual banquet held Thurs., Nov,. 9, at  Saluda High gradute.
  Featured speaker was former Saluda High basketball star Al Daniel, who went on to have a hall of fame college playing career.
  Following college, Daniel served and an assistant coach at Furman, Tulsa, Tennessee, N.C. State and recently retired as an academic advisor in the athletic department at the Unviersity of South Carolina.
  Daniel, who grew up on a Saluda County farm, told  many stories that happened during his career, and said he always lived by what his father, Charlie Sam, told him in his youth, “treat others like you want to be treated.”
  Kevin Crouch served as master of ceremonies. Rev. Burton Campbell had the invocation.
  Following the meal, catered by Shealy’s, the Ninety Six First Baptist Church Singers, led by Iris Riddle of Saluda, provided entertainment.
  Julia Wills of the Pyracantha Garden Club and Joanne Crouch of the Ridge Spring Arts Center, explained the table decorations that included gourds used as vases. Mrs. Crouch shwoed several varieties of gourds she had decorated.
  Saluda High School athletic director Jeanette Wilder introduced Daniel.
  Clemson Extension Agent Travis Mitchell made the presentation to Rushton. (See full story in print edition.)

Economic Development Projects
Highlight Council Meeting

  Saluda County Council took action on $160 million in economic development projects at the Mon., Nov. 13, meeting.
  Third and final reading was given on the ordinance to accept a fee in lieu ad valorem taxes for the $47 million S.C. Pet Food Solutions, LLC, plant, and first reading was given to accept a fee in lieu of ad valorem taxes for another large solar farm, this one valued a $115 million.
  In the public hearing prior to this third reading, Burnett Maybank explained the advantages of a fee in lieu of ad valorem taxes for both the county and the business.
  Paul Bartley, Josey Bartley and Lewis Burt had questions on the fee in lieu of, why there are so many scattered industrial parks, will the employees be local, can the local tech school train employees, who will pay for the waterline, and why all the secrecy?
  Council Vice-chairman Gwen C. Shealy said the answers would be supplied, but not at the meeting.
  Maybank did answer the question about secrecy, saying counties did not want another county to find out about a project and then try to steal it.
  The plant will employ approximately 90, and will produce a product that companies will buy and convert to pet food.
  The solar farm will cover over 300 acres and will be built on Topaz Road off Hwy. 23, Development Director Ed Parler said. The project has a 2019-2020 completion date.
  Council approved to enter into a memorandum of understanding with learning for life to participate in the EMS Explorer program. Students in grades 10-12 will be allowed to train with the EMS and learn basic first aid and CPR, EMA Director Jacob Starnes.
  Council took as information a proposal for a one call service for emergency  air medical services. Annie McCombs said under the agreement, dispatchers would call her company and they would handle dispatching helicopters, even if they have to call a competitor.
  Starnes said currently dispatchers call a helicopter and if a it is not available, they call another company.
  McCombs said one call takes the pressure off of the dispatchers.
  Council approved paying $22,193 to fund the purchase of body worn cameras for all officers in the sheriff’s department. Chief Deputy Chris Cockrell said the county had received a $36,034 grant from the state to buy the cameras, but it will cost $58,228 to supply cameras of all the officers.
  Cockrell said he did not want some officers to have cameras and some not. The county will be reimbursed by the state in the next funding cycle.
  Council accepted the audited financial statements for fiscal year 2016-2017, as presented by David Enzastiga. Enzastiga said the county got an unqualified opinion, which is the top rating.
  Accepted was a proposal from David and Floyd for environmental services and demolition of the county building located at 722 Batesburg Hwy. Cost will be $4850.
  Council approved paying for the health insurance increase on the employer’s portion, not to exceed $15,050.
  Instead of spending $2,600 for the employee Christmas luncheon, council agreed to spend an extra $1,100 to give each employee a $20 Bi-Lo gift card.
  Kevin Crouch was appointed and Darron Wilson reappointed to the  Upper Savannah Workforce Development Board. Rex Abney and Heather Griffin were appointed to the County Grievance Committee.
  Donnie Longshore was appointed to represent the Circle Fire Department on the Fire Board, and Mike Hite will serve as the alternate.



  Mount Alpha Baptist Church in Ward, South Carolina honored their Veterans on Sunday, November 12, 2017 in the W.H. Fellowship Hall. Mount Alpha has 27 veterans, some have served in the Korea war, Vietnam, Desert Storm, Afghanistan and the National Guard. The following were on program: Master of Ceremonies Earl Bryant, Invocation Rev. Eldwin Griffin, History of Veterans Day Jordon Davis, Armistice Day Camren Samuels, Honoring Veterans Tykeem Martin, and Celebrating Veterans Day Kayla Davis. Our special guests were Pat Asbill and Veteran Capers Asbill.
  There is a new shop in Ridge Spring.  The grand opening & ribbon cutting ceremony for Haley Bee Boutique at 100 Town Square is Thursday November 16 at 10:00 AM. ”We will have giveaways, raffles, and refreshments.”  Store hours will be  Monday  and  Tuesday 10:00-5:00, Thursday and Friday 10:00-6:00, Saturday 10:00-4:00.
  The Town of Ridge Spring has begun a process to Focus on its potential.  Committees are being formed and three  have already met.  These Committees will meet about four times a year. Beautification Committee and  Business Growth Committee have met.  The Town Promotion Committee has met with Allison South Marketing Group and will review their proposal this week.  Things are looking GOOD!!!
  The Shoppes of Ridge Spring and The Art Gallery  are beginning to gear up for Black Friday Sales and Small Business Saturday.  There will be a food truck coming Friday and Saturday, November  24th  and 25th. He will be doing Coffee and Hot Chocolate in the morning with something kind of Breakfast style and then Hamburgers and Fish dinners and sides for lunch.
  Helpful Hands food & clothing bank will be reopening Saturday November 25th 10am-12 noon at 512 Merritt St. Also Helpful Hands and Queens of Diamonds will be giving out fruit for seniors Sunday November 19th @ 2pm at the Helpful Hands Life Center . please come out and get your fruit if you are 55 and older. we can deliver to local town residents.
  Juniper will be closed for Thanksgiving November 22-25.  They will be open for Sunday Buffet on November 26.
  The Farmers’ Market with the fresh local greens is getting started around 9:00 to 9:30.  No need to rush for Leonard Bell will be there ready to sell those fresh locally grown greens and other vegetables.
  The Ridge Spring-Monetta Band will be wrapping up its fruit sale on Tuesday, November 28th.  If anyone is interested in ordering fruit from the band please contact a band member or Mr. Clamp at jclamp 
  Jostens will be at RS-M High School on Tuesday, November 29th at 2:30 p.m. to take orders for letter jackets.  Any athletes or band members who are interested in ordering a letter jacket can get information at the school.  This will be the only time this school year that letter jackets will be ordered.
    RSM Middle School & High School held its annual Mr. RSM pageant Saturday November 4 at 6:00 in the school gym.  The production was sponsored by the Yearbook Staff.  This year’s theme was “Searching for Prince Charming.”  Nine contestants competed for the honor, 6 from the middle school, and 3 from the high school.  Michael Summer was selected as “Prince Charming” from the high school by a panel of 4 judges, with Alex Tarlton winning 1st runner up.  Nehemiah Brooks won “Prince Charming” from the middle school, with Robbie Mitchell winning 1st runner up.  Many thanks to LaToya Wise, Antonio Scott, Jessica Greenlee and Amber Moody for judging the pageant.
  Josie Rodgers: I had a fabulous time at the CERRA Fall Renewal Conference at Myrtle Beach last week.  The workshops, sessions, and speakers were inspiring, refreshing, and encouraging.  The theme was “The Power of the Cape” and how teachers can be superheroes.  During our first day, we honored our country and our military by wearing red, white, and blue and learning about the 13 folds of the flag and what they mean.  On Thursday, we wore Superhero outfits or tees (of course, I chose Wonder Woman!).  We were even visited by Spiderman, Wonder Woman, Chewbacca, Captain America, and more!  On Friday, we all donned our CAPE T-shirts (“Creating And Preparing Educators”).  Though it was cold and rainy for most of our time, we were warm and cozy in the Landmark Resort, spending time with our friends and colleagues and learning how to be better teachers and teacher recruiters.  Oh, and my mom was my roomie again!  We had dinner at her favorite seafood restaurant, Sara J’s, and went shopping at Home Goods!  We talked during the entire drive down!  I am one lucky girl! 
  RSM High:  The Beta Club and the National English Honor Society are proud to celebrate American Education Week by providing breakfast for all faculty and staff on Wed morning.  These students appreciate all who work at the school and always provide a wonderful spread to show their gratitude for our staff. 
  The Teacher Cadets have adopted bulletin boards at the middle and high school.  These are “Staff Kudos Boards” and are used to promote positivity and encouragement for all staff.  Included on the board are shout-outs, teaching tidbits, inspirational quotes, and jokes.  The Cadets will update the boards weekly, but the teachers and staff can also add to the board!
  The Beta Club, NEHS, and Teacher Cadets are excited to sponsor a holiday event for all children in our community!  “Cookies and Stories with Mrs. Claus” will be held on Wed., Dec. 7, at 6 pm in the high school cafetorium.  Children will enjoy cookies and milk, crafts, games, and story time with Mrs. Claus and some special elves all for FREE!  For more information, please contact Josie Rodgers. 
  RIDGE SPRING UNITED METHODIST CHURCH: October was a busy month around RSUMC. In addition to having free water and church information for Harvest Festival participants, the church had a 5th Sunday Sing. It was well attended. Our current Pastor, Ashley and former Pastor, John, in addition to a local church group, sang and led singing. Smiles, hugs and clapping hands was heard for over an hour. Watch this column to see when the next one will be, you will want to be there.
  Also during October the Big Red Box collected 17 pillows, pillow cases and blankets. These will be delivered to Killingsworth in Columbia. It is our pleasure to support this mission as they help women get back on their feet.
  November church members will be buying, wrapping and labeling presents for their family member of our Families Helping Families family. This year we have 4 children and a single Mom. We are excited to once again participate in this worthwhile project to make sure no sad faces on Christmas Day. If you would like to help with this, contact a church member to find out how.
  November is also the month of football rivalries for example: Carolina vs Clemson…just to name one. The Wesley Campus Ministry at Lander is asking fans to show their team spirit and donate to the ‘one’ they think will be the victor. RSUMC has team buckets located at church and if you would like to help push your team ahead, contact a church member. From a quick look today, seems that Carolina has a slight edge.
  RSUMC is on Face Book. Church Services are every Sunday at 11 a.m. unless otherwise noted.
  Art Center in Ridge Spring by Joanne Crouch
  Don’t miss the last pottery class of the season with Kim Ruff on Monday, November 13th from 6:30-8:30 at the Art Center.   Cost is $35 and for ages 12 & up.  The projects are a Christmas box with ribbon and a Christmas tree.   Contact  Kim Ruff at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Joanne Crouch at joanne.crouch26@ to pre-register for the class.  You can also sign up on Fridays and Saturday from 10-4 at the Art Center.
  In October, DS Owens,  won 1st place in photography at the Western Carolina State Fair in the fine art scenic category with “Between a Rock and a Hard Place”.   My gourd art is available at the Art Center and at the South Carolina Artisans Center in Walterboro.
  I had the pleasure of speaking on gourd art at the Farm-City Banquet on Thursday, November 9th at Saluda High School.  I was the guest of the Pyracantha Garden Club. There were beautiful arrangements on each table in a gourd.  This was a great event that recognizes the importance of agriculture and service to community working together to make our homes a better place. 
  Please shop local on Fridays and Saturdays from 10-4.  Works of 15 plus artists are available.  Get your unique gifts here.  The Art Center will be open for the Holiday Season events on November 23-24 from 10-4 for Black Friday & Small Business Weekend and the Shoppes of Ridge Spring Christmas Open House on Saturday, December 9 from 10-4 and Sunday, December 10 from 1-5.
  Harriet’s Garden Tips:  I enjoy watching “Danny Lipford: Today’s Homeowner” on TV and on his web site.  On this show Joe Truini does a lot of “Simple Solutions” including a nontoxic weed killer.  I have not tried it out but will this week.  It includes vinegar, Epsom salts, and dish detergent.  If anyone else has tried it, let me know.  I am going to plant cilantro spinach and lettuce this week.  Let’s get our fall gardens up and going.  By the way you can get fresh local greens at the Ridge Spring Famers’ Market on Saturdays after 9:00 AM.