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Friday's Midnight Flight to Close Some Roads

East Reed Road from Greenville Street to McConell Springs Road will be closed from 7 p.m. to midnight on Friday for The Peoples Bank Midnight Flight. Traffic to AnMed Health Women's and Children's Hospital will be rerouted during this time. A map is attached. Please help us notify the community to avoid any confusion the night of the race.
The Midnight Flight is a road race benefitting the Anderson Area YMCA. The race includes a 1-mile fun run, a 5K race and a 10K race. Info (864) 716-6809 or visit here 


Bomb Threat Empties New Courthouse

A bomb threat emptied the new Anderson County Courthouse this morning just after 8:30 a.m.

Police were called in with bomb-sniffing dogs to search the building.



County's Education Leaders Talk About New School Year

Greg Wilson/Anderson Observer

Over the past few weeks, the Anderson Observer interviewed all five superintendents of the county's schools about the upcoming year. Here is what they had to say:

Dist. 1, Robbie Binnicker

Dist. 2, Richard Rosenberger

Dist. 3, Kathy Hipp

Dist. 4, Joanne Avery

Dist. 5, Tom Wilson


News and Notes for Aug. 19, 2019

Greg Wilson/Anderson Observer

The winding down of summer is proving to be a busy time for announcements in Anderson County, with a number of new announcements, and a few not quite ready.

The new "Frog" Reams Education Center is now open. The facility has been reorganized to serve students and to honor former Boys' High School Principal Frog Reames. Story here.

Social media has also been buzzing with chicken news. First, Chick-Fil-A on Clemson Boulevard announced it will relocate to the vacant lot between Staples and Golden Corral to improve service and traffic flow. The completion of the project is currently slated for July 2020. And not 200 yards north on the same road, Popeye's has announced a new location on the corner of Salem Church Road across from The Peoples Bank. This should heat up the chicken sandwhich chat, since across the internet reviews are claiming the new Popeyes chicken sandwich is better than Chick-fil-A's. (See here, here, here and here for a few examples of those who believe it). Andersonians will get an opportunity to decide for themselves soon. The Popeyes is expected to be up and running by Spring of 2020.

Meanwhile downtown continues to refine plans from the development group Peach Properties, for the land behind the historic courthouse. Anderson County Adminstrator Rusty Burns said while there is some sense of urgency, the county wants to make sure the plans are sound since he says their decision will effect the county for the next 100 years. Currently, a mixed-use space of retail, residential and office buildings are part of the consideration.

The group's plans to expand develop across McDuffie Street using the property currently housing the Rogers Furniture building, have either been totally abandoned or stalled, depending on who you ask. Peach is still looking at other development sites downtown, however.

Across the back corner of the property in the old State Theater building, Grace Church continues to renovate (which has actually turned into a gut and rebuild project) the old building which suffered from years of neglect. The previous owner was given the building with the understanding it would be refurbished, but it never was. Grace is running about a year behind schedule on being ready to move into the building.

The buildings which housed, among other things, Big John's downtown are well into the refit stages. John Wright Jr. will occuppy the downstairs space with his real estate office, and residential space is being built upstairs.

Lots of other movement downtown, which I will look at next week.

Anderson County Council members continue to hold town hall meetings with constituents about the consideration of a vehicle tax fee. One is set for the Zion Fire Department Thursday. The Observer has strongly favored the fee to repair and maintain the county's 1,534 miles of roads.

One other reminder. Celebrate Anderson is less than two weeks away. The annual Labor Day event, sponsored by Anderson County, features music, kids' activities and this year will include an appearnce by the Budweiser Clydesdales. More here.


S.C. Senate Mulls Cutting USC Board of Trustees to 11

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A group of state senators is meeting this week to discuss a bill that would cut the number of trustees overseeing the University of South Carolina by nearly half to 11.

The bill was introduced in April and will likely get even more attention after trustees were nearly split on hiring retired Army Gen. Bob Caslen as the school's new president

A Senate Education subcommittee will discuss the proposal Tuesday that would reduce the number of trustees elected by legislator from 16 based on judicial districts to seven based on the state's U.S. House districts.

Four seats would remain unchanged — two selected by the governor, the state education superintendent and the president of the school's alumni association.

Faculty and students would still not have a seat on the board.


School Dist. 5 Superintendent Says One-Cent Tax Helps Education

Greg Wilson/Anderson Observer

Anderson County School District Five Superintendent Tom Wilson talks about the coming school year and the difference the one-cent tax has made on education in the county.


School Opens Monday in Anderson County

Observer Reports

It's back to school time for Anderson County schools, with students in all four districts returing to the classroom Monday.

With the return to school comes an increase in traffic, incluing many inexperienced drivers, so parents are encouraged to allow plenty of time when dropping off kids as well as caution for all drivers to watch for children at bus stops.

With buses back on the roads, it's a good time to remember to be ready to stop for school buses.

In South Carolina no schools can retun before the third week in August. 

Under current law, a school district may not begin school before the third Monday of August, a change that went into place in 2006 after pressure from coastal counties concerned about the impact of tourist season.

School districts across the state say that change no longer works for their students so several lawmakers have filed bills that could leave that decision in the hands of a local school boards to allow for enough days of instruction prior to testing.

Classes at Tri-County Techinical College also begin Monday. Anderson University and Clemson University classes resume Wednesday.


Fox21: Clemson Issues Boil Water Advisory for Some Users

CLEMSON, SC (FOX Carolina) - Residents and businesses in some parts of Clemson are urged to boil their water after a water leak on Highway 93.

According to the city, the leak happened in front of the 7-Eleven gas station along with highway.

The boil advisory was issued early Sunday morning by the city government. According to the release, the following areas and neighborhoods are affected:

  • Highway 93 from Ingles to Berkeley Drive
  • Cambridge Drive from Highway 93 to the Ingles driveway
  • Old Central Road from Highway 93 to Ford Road
  • The Woodlands
  • Creekwood Apartments
  • The Retreat Apartments

The city says residents should vigorously boil their water for at least one full minute prior to drinking or cooking until the advisory is lifted.

Anyone with questions should call the utilities department at (864) 653-2046 during normal business hours, or the police department at (864) 624-2000 after normal business hours. You can also check the city's website for updates.

The advisory notes the city will collect water samples in the area and should finish testing around 7 a.m. on Monday, August 19. Results will be posted to the city's website.


County Council to Consider Zoning Issues Tuesday

Anderson County Council will look at a series of zoning issues, some of which will include public hearings for community discussion, as part of Tuesday's meeting at 6:30 p.m. in the historic courthouse downtown.

Full agenda here.


School Dist. 4 Superintendent Wants Top Customer Service

Anderson County School District Four Superintendent Joanne Avery discusses the past school year and new plans and initiatives for the district, which covers the Pendleton area, in this interview.


S.C. Attorney General Files Suit Against Opioid Companies

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina Attorney General's office has filed a lawsuit against major opioid distribution companies, claiming the businesses are partially responsible for the opioid crisis.

News outlets report Attorney General Alan Wilson filed the lawsuit Thursday against Cardinal, McKesson and AmerisourceBergen, three major pharmaceutical shipping companies, in response to the severe increase in overdoses and deaths in South Carolina.

Wilson claims the companies violated the Unfair Trade Practices Act and were public nuisances. The lawsuit claims the companies failed to report massive and suspicious orders and failed to review new customers.

Wilson says the companies should've known the pills they were distributing weren't being used for legitimate purposes.

The lawsuit is in the discovery phase and is scheduled for a March 2020 trial.

Reports don't include comments from the companies.


Jack McIntosh Book on High Shoals Lights Up History

Anderson attorney, author and historian has written a new book, "High Shoals: Two Tales of a City," which chornicles, among other things, the role of Anderson-Native William Whitner's experiment in alternating current generation over distances greater than one mile. The High Shoals to Anderson project made the city famous as the Electric City.


AU Welcome Week for Students Begins Saturday

Anderson University is welcoming more than 700 new students to its campus community as the 2019-2020 academic year gets underway with a series of events. 

Classes begin Wednesday. but Move-In Day kicks off the week  

Move-In Day, the first of several campus-wide activities during the first week of the school year, begins Saturday, August. 17 at 8:30 a.m. Welcome Week concludes a Saturday Big Welcome Event, designed to bring together faculty, staff and students for food and fun. This event will conclude with a fireworks show. 

The scheduled for Welcome Week include:

Sunday, August 18, 9 a.m. and 11:15 a.m.

Matriculation Worship Services at Henderson Auditorium, for students and members of their family to celebrate the start of a new year with worship music.

10 a.m.

The Archway Walk, during which incoming students signal the beginning of their journey at Anderson University with a formal procession beneath the Archway and individual handshakes with President Evans P. Whitaker. 

7:30 p.m.

Trojan Tradition, which brings new students together with returning students on Alumni Lawn for a candle-lighting ceremony and fellowship.

Monday, 8:30 p.m.

Outdoor Movie Night this year takes place on greenspace at the G. Ross Anderson Jr. Student Center and features Disney’s live-action adaptation of “Aladdin.”

Tuesday, 7 p.m.

West Fest is held at the Athletic Campus Pavilion and is a themed carnival featuring music, dancing and food ahead of the first day of classes. 

Friday, 5:30 p.m.

Beach Bash is hosted by President Whitaker and Mrs. Diane Whitaker at their home and celebrates the first Friday of the school year with dancing, a cookout and beach activities and games.