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Shred/Recycle Day set for Oct. 19 at Anderson Mall

On Oct. 19, a Better Business Burea/AARP Anderson Shred event is scheduled at the Anderson Mall (Back Entrance) Civic Center Blvd Entrance off Martin Luther King Blvd 

Individuals and small businesses can take advantage of free on-site document shredding, electronic recycling, and take home practical tips to prevent identity theft online and off. Industries will be on location to recycle computer equipment such as monitors,printers and hard drives;all of which will be wiped by Goodwill according to Department of Defense Standards.

The maximum number of boxes and plastic bags per consumer, business and vehicle is 3. Cardboard boxes will be emptied and returned to consumers. Due to safety concerns and to ensure that we are able to serve as many vehicles as possible, we are unable to accept people on foot this year or allow people to get out of their vehicle to watch their paper shredded.

The complimentary shred event is first come, first serve or until the shred trucks fill up, so coming early is advised. For more information about BBB AARP Shred Day, contact the BBB at (864)242-5052 or visit


AU to Add Football in 2024

Observer Reports

Anderson University announced today the school's first football program, after receiving a $3 million challenge gift. An additiona $3 million is needed to field a team. 

“After years of discussion, careful consideration and operating from a position of academic and financial strength, Anderson University’s Board of Trust is adding a Trojan football program as its next successful athletic team,” said Anderson University President Evans P. Whitaker. “In the past several years, Anderson has experienced exponential growth in enrollment, added innovative academic programs and enjoyed the best national and regional rankings in the history of the University, among them being recognized as 27th in the nation for student engagement by the Wall Street Journal, and being named an Apple Distinguished School for the last six years. With this firm foundation, and the magnificant gift we’ve secured, the time is right to offer Trojan football to our community.”

Upstate South Carolina philanthropist and friend of Anderson University, Dr. Melvin Younts, is providing $3 million as a challenge gift in support of the initiative. University officials are seeking partners to realize Dr. Younts’ gift and bring in a total of $6 million to launch the program. The goal is to field a team for the 2024 season that will play NCAA Division II competition as a member of the South Atlantic Conference (SAC). 

“The Trojan football program is being built on the same foundation that has made Anderson into one of the best Christian universities in the country,” said Vice President for Athletics Dr. Bert Epting. “Our administration will recruit student-athletes and coaches who are excellent ambassadors of our university who excel on and off the field. The future of Anderson University in general—and our athletic program specifically—is very bright.”

“Launching football from a position of strength means two things: that football will maintain Anderson’s student selectivity and high academic standards, along with its equally high standards for student-athletes’ personal and professional development, and that paying for football will not take resources from existing academic, athletic or student-life programs," Whitaker said. 

South Atlantic Conference members that field football include longstanding members Carson-Newman University, Wingate University, Lenoir-Rhyne University, Mars Hill University, Newberry College, Tusculum University and Catawba College.

Anderson University currently fields 18 intercollegiate athletic teams, with men’s lacrosse beginning play in 2021.


S.C. Crops Threatened by Long Drought

CLEMSON — More than half of South Carolina is in a moderate to severe drought and another 26 percent is abnormally dry, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor, and Clemson University researchers and Cooperative Extension Service agents say it is affecting crop yields.

Charles Davis, Extension row crops agent in Calhoun County, said hot, dry weather is plaguing late-season crops, such as peanuts. A total of 65,000 acres of peanuts were planted in South Carolina this year and the drought slowed maturation of the crop.

“Peanuts were shut down unless the crops were irrigated,” Davis said. “Digging conditions on tight soils have made the peanut harvest difficult for peanut producers.”

Dry fields have ramped up the state’s cotton harvest. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service reports about 300,000 acres of cotton were planted in South Carolina. About 20 percent of the state’s cotton crop and 47 percent of the state’s peanut crop had been harvested as of Sept. 29. The report shows adequate soil moisture in topsoil at just 15 percent, with 23 percent adequate soil moisture for subsoil.

Ben Fallen, soybean program leader at Clemson’s Pee Dee Research and Education Center in Florence, said the extent of which crops are affected depends on where they are located.

“Rainfall has been very isolated this summer which has had a big impact on crops,” Fallen said. “Soybeans are doing good, but we really need some rain to finish out the crop. We are in the pod-filling stage and now we need the rain more than ever. Cotton had a rough season early on then a good August, at least in the Pee Dee area. Then the weather was perfect for harvest.”

David Gunter, Clemson Extension feed grain specialist at the Edisto Research and Education Center in Blackville, said the 2019 season “…can’t end soon enough.”

South Carolina corn also is suffering.

“The season is over and the producers are taking another hit and it’s getting harder and harder for them to come back,” he said.

Gunter said moisture also is needed for small grains, such as wheat, rye, oats and barley, to seed.

“None of these will germinate without some rain and not just a one-time event,” he said. “We need normal rain, whatever that is.”

“If the drought extends into the fall and winter without significant rainfall across South Carolina, then it is likely to become more of an exceptional drought,” said Thomas Walker of the S.C. Water Resources Center. “Fall is the time of year when South Carolina generally has experienced the most rainfall, which helps replenish rivers, reservoirs and aquifers.”

Effects of the drought depend on which water-use sectors and which parts of the state are being considered. Reservoir levels are down across the state, but not to the levels of concern seen in past significant droughts. Some localized effects are seen in some stream and river systems. Groundwater is used in times of drought to make up for rainfall shortages. Currently, some groundwater levels are below normal or low in parts of the state. But it’s not all bad.

Rain and cooler temperatures are needed to pull South Carolina out of the drought.


DT Taco Announces Closing

DT Taco, which opened downtown in the Spring, announced tonight the restaurant is permanently closed.


Anderson Nurse Chosen National Caregiver of the Year

Anderson's Mary Craig, RN, has been named Special Programs Caregiver of the Year by Maxim Healthcare Services, a national provider of home healthcare, behavioral care, healthcare staffing, personal caregiving, and population health and wellness solutions.

Craig has more than two decades of nursing experience and is most frequently assigned to cardiovascular intensive care units (CICUs). During her past eight years with Maxim, Craig has completed staffing contracts in 10 states, making a difference in the lives of countless patients along the way. Her assignments typically last 13 weeks and, despite the transient nature of her job, she is known for quickly taking charge at whichever facility she is placed. Thanks to her deep expertise and amiable demeanor, Craig often serves as a preceptor to new nurses in the high-pressure CICU.

In addition to her mentorship, Craig is known for the meticulous care and treatment she provides to her patients and her innate ability to deliver news to families – whether good or bad – with the utmost compassion. She ensures her patients are taken care of long after she’s gone to her next assignment. 

“Mary is a model of what a travel nurse should be,” said Alisha Beeman, national recruitment manager at Maxim. “She provides top-of-the-line patient care, and is flexible, coachable and willing to pick up shifts when needed. Most importantly, Mary is a compassionate and wonderful human being.”

A panel of judges selected Craig and three other regional winners from hundreds of nominations across the country. Now in its eighth year, the Caregiver of the Year Award program celebrates nurses and home healthcare aides for the key roles they play in delivering quality, patient-centered care to some of the nation’s most medically fragile and chronically ill patients.


Walmart Pulls Zantac Over Cancer Concerns

(UPI) -- Walmart suspended the sale of the anti-heartburn drug Zantac and other related drugs after its manufacturer recalled the medicine due to concerns of cancer risks.

The retailer announced it would halt sales of over the counter ranitidine products including Zantac and other brands such as Equate and Member's Mark.

"The company is taking this action after closely monitoring the recent Product Alert from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration that ranitidine products may contain a low level of nitrosodimethylamine," Walmart said.

Customers who have purchased the affected products were instructed to return them to a Walmart or Sam's Club store for a refund.

Walmart joined Walgreens, Rite Aid and CVS Health in suspending sales of the products after drug maker Apotex recalled generic 75-milligram and 150-milligram ranitidine tablets.


John Pavlovitz to Visit Anderson Sunday, Monday

Greg Wilson/Anderson Observer

Anderson is in for a treat this weekend, when author/pastor/activist/blogger John Pavlovitz, with more than 278,000 followers on Facebook, will bring to town a much-needed message that transcends all religious traditions - the call to kindness.

Pavlovitz, will be in at Grace Episcopal Church in Anderson Sunday at 3 p.m. to talk about “The Hero in All of Us” and “Building a Bigger Table,” and again Monday at 6:30 p.m at Mr. Rivers Breakfast Joint for a workshop on compassionate activism. 

The former pastor from Wake Forest, N.C., is a prophet, crying in a crazy American incestuous political and religious wilderness, with a message rooted in the biblical list(s) known as “fruit of the spirit.” (Don’t get me started on the singular/plural thing. The Greek word is singular, so let’s just go with that for now.)

The fruit list(s) appear a couple of times in the New Testament, but they promote the idea that any manifestations of a life of faith will inlcude: “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” 

These are the core elements of message of Pavlovitz, and are also at the heart of his blog, “Stuff That Needs to be Said,” which most recently posted: 

“Apparently, I’ve been radicalized and I wasn’t aware. Certain people call me the “radical Left” all the time. I never considered myself radical before. I just thought I was normal, ordinary, usual. I thought equity was important to everyone. I imagined America was filled with people who took that Life, Liberty, and Pursuit of Happiness stuff seriously—for all people. I thought the Golden Rule was actually mainstream.”

His message is inclusive, inviting everyone - he means it literally - to join in the his quest for compassion, directly challenging almost every aspect of the current White House administration and those who support it. (Especially evangelicals who have become apologists for the president).  

In his first book, “A Bigger Table,” Pavlovitz casts his vision for equality, diversity and justice in and out of religious community. His second book, “Hope and Other Superpowers,” (“a life-affirming, love-defending, butt-kicking manifesto”) is an honest look at how to grab onto hope and find self actualization in the middle of a messy world. 

In his latest work, “Low: An Honest Advent Devotional,” out in plenty of time for the season, are echoes of G.K. Chesterson: 

“Glory to God in the Lowest

The spout of the stars in spate-

Where thunderbolt thinks to be slowest

And the lightning fears to be late:

As men dive for sunken gem

Pursuing, we hunt and hound it,

The fallen star has found it

In the cavern of Bethlehem.” 

Pavlovitz expounds on such thought with encouragements to find Jesus in the “low places,” in suffering, grief, the grind of every day life, where we can experience the promise of “God with us.” 

In reports from other recents events, Pavlovitz has suggested four non-negotiables as he seeks to enlarge the table, a metaphor for welcoming people, whether it's to a church, social or political setting:

  • Radical hospitality, which he described as “the Italian mother’s welcome where you will be showered with food and affection until you can take it no more.”
  •  Total authenticity, not “reading the room to notice how people are dressed and what they’re talking about” to make the calculation, “if I share this, will it push me to the periphery of the community?” Using that approach, “we become highly censored versions of ourselves. What if we could really come as we are? What if there are no deal-breakers?”
  • True diversity, because despite what churches say about themselves, “most churches are less diverse than places we work or shop at.” Churches, he said, should also be theologically diverse, “which will take work from you. We have to be students of other people, because their stories will change us.”
  • Agenda-free relationships. “What would it be like if people weren’t trying to fix or save or renovate you?” he asked. “I just want to know your story for the beauty of it.”

The Anderson Forum for Progressive Theology (previously known as the Anderson School of Theology for Laypersons) was created in 1960 by a group of men and women, laity and clergy, who wanted a wider and deeper lens for exploring theological and philosophical thought as well as social and cultural issues. 


Council Approves Body Cameras for Deputies

Greg Wilson/Anderson Observer

Anderson County Council approved a grant to provide Sheriff's Deptment deputies with body cameras and cloud storage of all information.

The $180,000 cost is completely covered by grant money. The goal is to cover all deputies who respond to calls, said Anderson County Council Vice Chariman Ray Graham. 

Recap of the meeting with Anderson County Councilman Brett Sanders, Dist. 4 below:



Rusty Burns Updates County Priorities for Weeks Ahead

Penny Sales Tax Idea Could Replace Road Maintenance Fee

Greg Wilson/Anderson Observer

Anderson County Administrator Rusty Burns talks about paying for county roads, when Kid Venture 2.0 will reopen, the airport expansion, sewer issues, economic development, tax incentives for businesses, Green Pond Landing's success, news on the county's Christmas tree and more in this interview with the Anderson Observer.


Winthrop Poll: S.C. Democratic Favor Biden

ROCK HILL, SOUTH CAROLINA - South Carolina Democratic voters strongly support Joe Biden to be the Democratic nominee to become the 46th president, according to the latest Winthrop Poll.

Thirty-seven percent of those surveyed said they were leaning toward voting for the former vice president. Of the African Americans Democratic and Democratic leaning voters contacted, he had even higher numbers, at 46 percent. 

Other candidates planning to run in the S.C. primary with support were U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, 17 percent, followed by U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, 8 percent, and U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris, 7 percent. The remaining 15 candidates fell under 5 percent.

South Carolina is important in the presidential process because it is the first primary in the South and because it is the first time presidential candidates can be vetted by large numbers of African-American voters.

"African Americans constitute one of the most important constituencies for the Democratic Party," said Winthrop Poll Director Scott Huffmon. "African Americans can make up more than 60 percent of the Democratic Presidential Primary vote in South Carolina, which is a much larger portion than in the Iowa Caucus or New Hampshire primary." 

See questions and answers here.

Only a third of those surveyed by the Winthrop Poll said they were sure of their choice. A little more than half of all respondents said they might change their mind.

The Democratic and Democratic leaning poll respondents overwhelmingly (93 percent) said they disapprove of the way Trump is handling his job as president. Those S.C. voters who identify as Republican or lean that way have the opposite opinion: 72 percent approve of Trump.

More than half of white Democratic voters in S.C. said that beating Trump was more important than picking a candidate who shared their positions on major issues, while only 35 percent of black respondents said beating Trump was important.

For this latest Winthrop Poll, callers spoke to 462 Democratic and Democratic Leaning Registered Voters and 406 Republican and Republican Leaning Registered Voters between Sept. 21-30. Phone calls were made primarily during weekday evenings, all day Saturday, and Sunday afternoon and evening and were made in English. Results that use all Democratic and Democratic Leaning respondents have a margin of error of +/- 4.6 percent at the 95 percent confidence level. Results that use all Republican and Republican Leaning respondents have a margin of error of +/- 4.9 percent at the 95 percent confidence level.

The Winthrop Poll is paid for by Winthrop University. It is one of 18 threshold polls chosen by the Democratic National Committee to determine who among the two dozen 2020 presidential candidates qualify for debates.


School District One Pleased with 2019 S.C. Report Card

Anderson School District One scored well in the recently released 2019 report cards and test scores, ranking the district and schools among the best in the state. 

“We are very pleased with the achievement of our students and the progress made,” said Dist. One Superintendent Robbie Binnicker. “The hard work and dedication of staff, students and parents has again placed the district among the best districts in the state.” 

The district boasted a graduation rate of 91.9 percent, almost 10 percentage points above the state average. The district was third in the state for grades 3-8 on the state assessment, SC Ready, for ELA and Math.  The district’s English as a Second Language students led the state with 68.20 percent success as compared to the state average of 49.80 percent. Meanwhile, Powdersville Elementary School ranked as the second best elementary school in the state on the S.C. report card.


American Bass Angler to Visit Greenpond This Weekend

American Bass Anglers' the Bass Pro Shops Open Series South Carolina Division and Georgia Division will hold their final event of the 2019 season Saturday and Sunday at Green Pond Landing and Event Center on Hartwell Lake. Anglers from both States will compete for cash and prizes as well as positions in the 2020 Ray Scott Championship, to be held on Hartwell Lake in April 2020.

“We are very excited to have American Bass Anglers back in Anderson County and Green Pond Landing," said Neil Paul, Executive Director of Visit Anderson. "ABA has been an integral part of the growth and development of not only Green Pond Landing but fishing in the upstate of South Carolina among our many lakes. We look forward to hosting a committed group of anglers in our community!”

The public is invited to the daily weigh-ins at 2:30 p.m. both days.

For more information on this tournament, call Rodney Michael, tournament manager, at 256-497-0967 or ABA at 256-232-0406. Online, see


Leo Mazzone to Speak at TD Club Friday

Leo Mazzone, the longtime pitching coach for the Atlanta Braves, will be the guest speaker at the weekly meeting of the Anderson Area Touchdown Club Friday.  Mazzone earned a reputation as one of the best pitching coaches, and is credited for some of the success of Tom Glavine, John Smoltz and Greg Maddux.  He is currently the Special Pitching Advisor for the Furman University baseball program.

The TD Club meets at the main branch of the Anderson County Library, and the food line begins at 11:30 a.m. The cost of lunch is $15.00 for visitors, and is catered by Mama Penns.

The weekly high school players and coaches to be honored on Friday will be announced on Thursday. 

For more information, call 864-934-2423 or 864-616-6471.