Daily Archives: 11/06/2018

County plans events for Veterans Day

LIBERTY — The streets of downtown Liberty will be filled with red, white and blue this Sunday, Nov. 11, as Pickens County pays tributes to its veterans.

The Veterans Day weekend festivities will kick off a day earlier on Saturday with a dinner hosted and sponsored by Golden Creek Baptist Church in Liberty, where a free meal will be served to those who register in advance through the Veterans Affairs office.

The celebration will continue on Sunday at 2 p.m. with hundreds of veterans walking or riding in the military parade. The public is encouraged

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Liberty man hit, killed by vehicle

By Jason Evans

Staff Reporter

EASLEY — A Liberty man died last week after being struck by a vehicle in Easley.

Pickens County coroner Kandy Kelley said the victim, William James Murphree, 39, of Porter Road, died of blunt force trauma.

The collision occurred at 8 a.m. Oct. 31 on the 100 block of South 5th Street, Easley Police chief Tim Tollison said.

Murphree was on the sidewalk when a vehicle veered across the adjacent

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Teen dies day after being struck by car

CLEMSON — An Oconee County teen died days after he was hit by a car while crossing a busy highway in Clemson last week.

Pickens County coroner Kandy Kelley said 17-year-old Elijah Davis of Westminster was pronounced dead of blunt force trauma at 7:20 p.m. Friday at Greenville Memorial Hospital.

The accident took place shortly before 8 p.m. Oct. 29 as Davis was

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New cabins now open at Mile Creek Park

By Jason Evans

Staff Reporter

SIX MILE — Rainy weather didn’t put a damper on the opening of the 10 new cabins at Mile Creek Park in Six Mile on Friday afternoon.

“It’s still an absolutely beautiful day in Pickens County when you look at what they’ve accomplished up here with these cabins,” county council chairman Roy Costner said. “If you haven’t been inside the cabins yet, it’s absolutely perfect, gorgeous.”

Costner said his days of Boy Scouts camping in pup tents are over.

“This is my kind of camping,” he said. “This is what I would like to do.”

A previous county council had the vision to begin the cabins project, and the current council saw it through, he said.

As part of Duke Energy relicensing, the county received $300,000 to put toward a project.

Emily DeRoberts, Duke Energy’s government and community relations manager, said county planning director Chris Brink served on the Keowee Toxaway Relicensing Stakeholders team.

DeRoberts said Duke Energy has had “a long and wonderful relationship” with Pickens County.

“We hope to continue that,” DeRoberts said.

County officials came up with extra funding to pair with the Duke Energy funds and “go the extra mile,” she said.

“We’re thankful to Pickens County also for respecting the Shoreline Management Plan and the recreation needs that Duke Energy agrees with,” DeRoberts said. “We want to continue to do that and offer more places for our country folks to live and work and play.”

In the weeks leading up to the cabins’ completion, Pickens County held a contest to give away stays at the cabins.

The 10 contest winners began their free stays Friday afternoon. Carson and Cohen Bratcher of Honea Path were among the winners.

Carson Bratcher was surprised to hear she and her husband had won a stay.

“I don’t ever win anything,” she said.

Friday was the first time the couple had been to Mile Creek Park.

“We’re really excited about it,” Carson Bratcher said. “I love it. The cabin is so cute.”

County Councilman Wes Hendricks said the cabins and the park are “the top of the top.”

“We’re not done here at Mile Creek,” he said.

Future plans call for upgrading the power at the park’s campsites and creating campsites with larger pads.

Hendricks said he would like to see a kayak put-in created at the park.

“I think that would be great,” he said. “It’s a very popular sport here in our area.”

County tourism director Jay Pitts said interest in renting the cabins is already high.

County administrator Gerald Wilson has said that the 10 cabins are likely the first phase of cabins at Mile Creek.


Pickens senior marks milestone

PICKENS — Pickens High School senior Lexi Wierzbicki found her first passion at age 3, competing as a gymnast.

However, as she grew, she had to move on because she was too tall for the sport. Out of necessity, she focused on volleyball in the seventh grade. Since then, Wierzbicki has become one of the top players in the state for the Lady Blue Flame, being named Region I-4A player of the year three times, but last week she marked an even bigger achievement.

During Pickens’ second-round Class 4A playoff matchup with York on Oct. 30, Wierzbicki recorded her 1,000th career kill.

Wierzbicki, who has been a starter for the Flame since her freshman year in 2015, entered the contest needing 11 kills. She knew it and the team knew it, but the task at hand was to beat York and advance.

“I didn’t want to focus on anything but a win for our team,” Wierzbicki said after Pickens’ straight-sets victory.

Already up 2-0, the Flame climbed ahead in the third set. The Pickens

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Work begins on sprucing up Easley’s downtown

By Jason Evans

Staff Reporter

EASLEY — Work has begun on a number of different projects aimed at sprucing up Easley’s downtown TIF district.

City council members and city officials discussed the TIF (tax increment financing) work during a council work session last month.

Part of the work includes the addition or replacement of 30 benches, 20 trash receptacles, 15 bike racks and more than 40 new trees across the

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County planning time capsule events, museum display

By Jason Evans
Staff Reporter

PICKENS — The public will be able to get a closer look at the artifacts removed from a time capsule buried in 1968 with the opening of a new exhibit at the Pickens County Museum of Art and History.

The capsule buried at the Pickens County Courthouse was opened on Oct. 5 as part of the county’s sesquicentennial celebration.

“All the artifacts from the time capsule that we excavated a couple weeks back will be on display,” tourism director Jay Pitts said.

An event set for 5:30 p.m. Nov. 15 at the museum will kick off the “150


Days of History” campaign.

“We’re going to celebrate 150 years of Pickens County’s history,” Pitts said.

During the Nov. 15 event, mayors from Central, Clemson, Easley, Liberty, Norris, Pickens and Six Mile will open and read aloud 50-year-old sealed letters from the 1968 time capsule.

A new time capsule will be buried at the Pickens County Courthouse on Dec. 14 following the “Pickens Sesquicentennial Christmas Parade,” set to begin at 7 p.m. that night.

The downtown event is themed “A Hometown Holiday” and is sponsored by the city of Pickens, the Pickens Revitalization Association, the Pickens County Historical Society and county government.

In honor of the sesquicentennial, registration fees for the parade are being waived.

Parade participants are encouraged to dress in period costumes representing 1868 or 1968. The first 1,000 people who dress up will receive a limited-edition commemorative sesquicentennial challenge coin.

All items to be considered for the time capsule must be dropped off at the Pickens County Museum at least two weeks prior to the burial. Items will be evaluated by the Pickens County Historical Society and the Time Capsule Board.

The time capsule is scheduled to be unearthed in 2068.

While they wait for the next 50-year unearthing ceremony, officials want to continue to add new exhibits, artifacts and “new life into the museum,” Pitts said.

“One of the areas we’re going to start to strengthen is what we do here at the museum,” Pitts said.

The museum will be emphasizing more events for children, he said.

“We’re going to focus in on what we do for children,” Pitts said. “I believe that before we send them to Columbia, we need to let them see who we are and what we are.”

Museum staff are developing “a host of educational programs,” he said.


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Unwinnable battle of the vine

This may be hard to believe, but they sell both honeysuckle vine and trumpet vine in garden catalogues. Yes, friends, you can order it, and if so inclined — or insane — plant it in your yard.

This weekend, I spent several hours trying to remove a trumpet vine from the middle of an azalea that is being strangled. I pulled and pulled, but with trumpet vine the roots are probably 1,000 feet deep in the earth. This vine was tightly wound around the base of the azalea before spreading out and attacking the branches and leaves.

Any sustenance in the soil was being sucked out by the vine, so my poor azalea was fighting for its life.

After exhaustion set in, I understood that in the battle between me and the

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School district leads on safety measures

A few weeks ago, a student posted a threat on social media to harm students in one of our county high schools. Within 90 minutes, law enforcement was taking that student into custody. This quick response was made possible by a strong partnership that now exists between local law enforcement and our school district.

When I was elected to the school board in April 2014, I learned that the School district was out of compliance on a law that required a district of our size to have an alternative school. Each year, the district, under direction of the school board, had been requesting a waiver on this law. Our school district had been out of compliance with this law since it elected to close the Simpson Alternative school a few years earlier

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Courier Letters to the Editor 11-7-18

Five-letter words

Dear Editor,

There is a little five-letter word that is so powerful that it can’t be destroyed. No matter the depth it is buried, it will someday surface. It can be run from, but no matter how far or hard you run, it will someday find you.

It, like God, always has been and always will be. Feared by even the mightiest evil, because it can destroy that evil, yet it cannot be destroyed

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