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Daily Archives: 04/16/2019

Welcome to the 35th annual Azalea Festival

Special Edition inside this week’s Pickens County Courier, Festival is this Thursday, Friday and Saturday

When the Azaleas are blooming in Pickens, South Carolina, the little town celebrates!”

For 35 years, Pickens has celebrated spring by throwing an arts and entertainment based and family-friendly celebration — the Pickens Azalea Festival.

Each April, the Azaleas bloom, artisans and crafters come out, and the community joins together to celebrate spring in the city of Pickens. Celebrate is exactly what they do! Presented by the Pickens Azalea Festival Committee and hosted by area nonprofit and civic organizations, the Pickens Azalea Festival boasts the largest gathering of crafters, artisans and entertainers in the county, and quite possibly the Golden Corner!

The Azalea Festival is also somewhat of a large family reunion,

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Trip of a lifetime

Pickens native, 80, reaches 7th continent

PICKENS — From the time he was born, Pickens native Tom Hayes has always had an adventuresome disposition.

That roaming spirit has led him all over the world — to every U.S. state, seven Canadian provinces and three dozen countries.

But the 80-year-old’s bucket list recently got a long-awaited check mark as he celebrated his birthday with a January trip to Antarctica — the last continent he had yet to step foot on.

Though he was born in Laurens, Hayes moved to Pickens at age 6. After graduating from Pickens High School in 1957, Hayes immediately joined the Air Force, spending four of his five years in service in Germany.

As part of a mobile telecommunications team, Hayes was able to visit many European countries during his military service, kindling the desire to travel the world that eventually led to an expedition to Antarctica for a self-described “old guy who has had the good fortune to travel.”

“According to the net, being one of only 0.02 percent of

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21-year-old faces child sex charges

CLEMSON — A 21-year-old Clemson man was arrested last week and charged with second-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor.

Chief Jimmy Dixon said Roger Thomas Wilson was arrested after an investigation that began when police were notified by a

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Local Fred’s stores set to close

By Jason Evans

Staff Reporter

jevans@thepccourier.com

PICKENS COUNTY – Fred’s announced last week that it will close 159 stores, including two in Pickens County.

The Liberty and Pickens Fred’s stores are among those that will be closed by the end of May.

“After a careful review, we have made the decision to rationalize our footprint by closing underperforming stores, with a particular focus on locations with shorter duration leases,” Fred’s CEO Joseph Anto said in a press release. “Most of these stores have near-term lease expirations and limited remaining lease obligations.

“Decisions that impact our associates in this way are difficult, but the steps we are announcing are necessary,” Anto continued. “We will make every effort to transition impacted

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Mobile program could be answer

By Jason Evans

Staff Reporter

jevans@thepccourier.com

PICKENS — A program that brings recreation to residents could be an answer to Pickens County’s recreation funding concerns.

County administrator Gerald Wilson said county officials need to be thinking about how to ease the recreation burden on county coffers, while acknowledging areas such as Six Mile and Dacusville cannot currently fully fund recreation programs themselves.

During council’s Committee of the Whole meeting last week,

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New development, don’t spoil the view

It used to be that one of the best views of the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains from Easley was behind City Hall at the “convenience center” — the place where you could drop off your trash if you forgot to put it out by the road in time.

That grand view is still there, although, unfortunately for people like me, they closed down the convenience center a few years ago.

Now, it’s just a muddy field covered in weeds.

But that’s going to change. City officials are now reviewing proposals from two developers to transform that field — and the rest of the 12.5 acres the city is vacating downtown with the relocation of the streets and sanitation department — into new stores, restaurants and places to live.

As the deadline for proposals passed April 5, CC&T, a Charleston-based real estate company, and Realti Trust of Greenville had put in proposals that, according to city planner

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Hagood-Mauldin House to open during Azalea Festival

PICKENS — The spring opening of the Hagood-Mauldin House and Irma Morris Museum of Fine Arts, located at 104 Lewis St. in Pickens, will be Saturday, April 20.

The house and gardens will be open for tours from 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Visitors can sit and relax on the home’s beautifully shaded

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Childhood memories

From my research, I believe my parents, having nothing better to do at the time, decided to round out their farm baseball team with child number nine. I was the fifth boy along with four sisters who made up the O’Shields roster. However, little did we know that a pinch hitter in the form of another sister would show up in the next two years.

My early childhood years are filled with lots of memories, some of which I would like to share with you.

I had a memory of a lifetime after I failed to heed my Momma’s orders to get away from the window. I witnessed a tornado heading directly toward our house. I was perhaps six or seven years old at the time. It was a huge mass of dark, swirling debris accompanied by a vicious roar that looked as if it were sent by the Devil himself. I saw it pick up the front end of the meter reader’s truck just as two men ran from the electric meter and

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Courier Letters to the Editor 4-17-19

Thank a lineworker

Dear Editor,

The storms that hit our area Sunday did extensive damage across the Southeast region of the United States, resulting in death and destruction. One of the first things people think about during times like this is loss of electricity, which affects far more than comfort and convenience. Loss of power can have a tremendous adverse impact on life and safety for many people.

During these times, we also should remember the tens of thousands of dedicated lineworkers across the country who work tirelessly to maintain and restore electrical power to communities nationwide, often putting themselves in harm’s way.

April 18 is designated as National Lineman Appreciation Day, a day during which we remember and honor the dedicated, hardworking lineworkers who dedicate their lives to maintaining and restoring power in our communities. Storms, long hours and working in sky-high locations to install and

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A flu shot could save your life

Some of us just don’t want to get a flu shot every year. It’s too much trouble to get an appointment, or we just don’t like needles — or maybe we figure that we’ll just tough it out for a week if we do get the flu. After all, it’s not going to kill us, right?

A researcher at the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Minneapolis has come up with a strong reason to get an annual flu shot: You could have a heart attack if you don’t.

After studying 450,000 medical records of four flu seasons, the

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