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Clay Ross Closes Electric City Playhouse Season

Closing out the year for the Electric City Playhouse with the Clay Ross 10th Annual Reunion Concert and After Party on Dec. 22 at 8 p.m. Clay and his band will perform an 8PM concert at Electric City Playhouse on Wednesday, December 22nd. At 11 pm, that same night, the band will host an after-party, performing at Burgundy Blues Jazz Club. Tickets for the early show are $15 and all ticket holders will be granted free admission to Burgundy Blues. For those who wish to bypass the concert and head straight to the after-party, there will be a $10 cover at the door.


Matrix Construction To Build New Elementary School  

Matrix Construction Co. has been awarded a contract to build North Pointe Elementary School. The company was the low bidder for the project, which will cost $16,259,300. The District Five Board of Trustees approved the contract at its December 14 meeting.

In August, Matrix was awarded a separate $2,539,135 contract to perform grading and paving work at the school site, which is located off of S.C. Highway 81 near the Sullivan-King Mortuary. 

The total cost of site preparation and construction under the two contracts is $18,798,435. The funds will come from District Five’s $140 million bond issuance, which was approved by more than 60 percent of voters in an April 2007 referendum. 

North Pointe is scheduled for completion before the start of the 2012-2013 school year. It will be the 11th elementary school in the district.


Seven Dist. 5 Teachers Earn National Board Certification  

Seven teachers in Anderson School District Five have earned National Board Certification, bringing the total number of National Board Certified teachers in the district to 100. 

The newest NBC teachers are Regina Keels, T.L. Hanna High School; Brooke O’Neal, Calhoun Academy of the Arts; Amy Davis, Homeland Park Elementary School; Jan Mundy, McCants Middle School; Kathryn Patterson, Westside High School; Jenny O’Brien, Anderson V Career Campus; and Lisa Farmer, Whitehall Elementary School.

South Carolina added nearly 500 new NBC teachers statewide and now has a total of 7,784 NBC teachers and maintains a third-place national ranking. North Carolina and Florida rank first and second, respectively, according to the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards .

“I congratulate our newest group of achievers,” said State Superintendent of Education Jim Rex.  “The National Board process requires a tremendous amount of hard work and dedication.  Teachers tell me all the time that it strengthens what they do in the classroom.  In the end, our students are the biggest beneficiaries.” 

Certification candidates undertake a two-part process that lasts one to three years. It requires them to reflect on their classroom practices, their understanding of subject material and their preparation techniques.  In addition to preparing a portfolio with videotapes of classroom teaching, lesson plans, student work samples and reflective essays, teachers must complete assessment center exercises based on content knowledge to prove not only that they have mastered the subjects they teach, but also that they know how to teach them. 


Balanced Effort Lifts Lady Trojans Past Armstrong Atlantic

SAVANNAH, Ga. – With four players reaching double figures in the scoring column Anderson closed out action in the 2010 Hampton Inn & Suites Fall Finals Classic with a 70-61 win past host Armstrong Atlantic in non-conference women’s basketball action Saturday evening at the Armstrong Sports Center.  

Anderson (6-2) was the lone team to earn two wins at Classic, winning its sixth straight game - four coming away from home – and stayed unbeaten in the month of December with the win, while Armstrong Atlantic (5-3) dropped their second consecutive home contest after falling to Mt. Oliver on Friday.

Neither team was able to build more than a five-point advantage in the opening frame, as the first half featured three ties and two lead changes, with Anderson guard Demika Holt knocking down her second 3-pointer of the contest with just 49 seconds left in the first half, giving AU a lead it would not surrender at 34-31.

Following a 10-day break for Christmas, the Trojans wrap up their five-game road swing at the 2010 Rollins Holiday Classic and Winter Park Rotary Tangerine Tournament in Winter Park, Fla., where they will face the host Tars, who are currently undefeated (10-0) and ranked 14th in the country on Wednesday, Dec. 29. The Trojans close out the event vs. Florida Tech on Thursday, Dec. 30.   


UNC Pembroke Holds Off Trojans

PEMBROKE, N.C. – Offensive woes and foul trouble proved costly as the Anderson men’s basketball team wrapped up the non-conference portion of its schedule with an 84-69 setback to UNC Pembroke Saturday afternoon at the English E. Jones Center.   

Anderson (7-5) had its’ two-game win streak snapped, while UNC Pembroke (8-2) improved to 4-1 at home this season and avenged last season’s 107-90 setback at the hands of the Trojans. AU came up shy in its bid to defeat their fourth Peach Belt opponent of the 2010-11 campaign after knocking off Clayton State, Georgia College and North Georgia earlier this season.  

The Trojans converted 18 turnovers by the homstanding Braves into 17 points, but were outscored 48-20 in the paint by UNCP with Trey Britton garnering two fouls inside the first three minutes of action and Taylor Shugart limited to just 20 minutes after suffering a cut above his right eye   

Following a 17-day break for the Christmas and New Year’s holidays, Anderson gets back on the hardwood with a three-game conference homestand beginning with Lenoir-Rhyne on Wednesday, Jan. 5. Tip-off versus the Bears is scheduled for 8 p.m. at the Abney Athletic Center.  


Settlement Compensation Benefits Lake Hartwell

On December 16, Anderson County received the finalized S.C. Recreational Fishing Compensation Plan from the Trustee Council for Lake Harwell PCB settlement. The compensation plan allocates the $6,885,000 to seven projects, which include monitoring, stream restoration projects, Lake Hartwell Fish Habitat Enhancement, Public Access/Fishing Piers, Hartwell Tailrace Fishing Access, Green Pond Event Center and Easley Central Dam Sediment Characterization Study.

“Hartwell Lake is one of the Upstate’s most valuable recreational resources,” said Anderson County Council Chairman Tommy Dunn. “These funds, which are designated to remediate losses to recreational fishing services will help us made great strides toward enhancing the recreational appeal of Lake Hartwell. The Council wishes to thank our Legislative Delegation and the Trustees for allocating funds that include the Green Pond Landing Event Center and the Brown Road Waterfront Park. These 2 projects provide exceptional recreational development opportunities and will be economic drivers for both Anderson County and the entire Upstate.”

“During the past two years, the Parks Department has worked to secure funding for the Green Pond and Brown Road projects and we will keep our momentum,” said Parks Manager Matt Schell. “We are so pleased to have received the endorsement and financial support from the Trustee Council. This moves us one step closer to our goal of making Lake Hartwell a premier fishing and recreational destination for residents as well as tourists.”


New Emergency System Alerts Broadway Lake Residents

Anderson County Council woman Gracie Floyd will conduct a press conference on Friday, December 17th at 4 pm at McFalls Landing to alert residents to the County’s new drawdown procedure. The Public is invited.

“We want to make sure all Broadway Lake residents and visitors are aware of the new safety procedure,” said Floyd. “The additional signal on the siren will insure the safety of anglers (above and below the dam), boaters, and swimmers. I’m proud to see this project, an idea put forth by a resident of Broadway Lake, become a reality. I applaud everyone who worked to make this happen. This is yet another step to enhance Broadway Lake, the jewel of Anderson County.”

The new safety procedure will go into effect just before the annual drawdown, which begins at 10 am on December 26th. This will allow residents time to make much-needed repairs on docks and sea walls. The current plan is to release increments at approximately 1-foot of water per day over a 5-day period. On January 1, 2011 the water level will reach 5.5 feet below the full pool elevation and shall remain in this state until March 1, 2011. The purpose of the slow release is to protect the recent effort to stock the fishery, while allowing residents with boats on the lake ample time to make necessary arrangements.

Working in collaboration with Emergency Services and the Sheriff's Department, the Parks Department will implement the new emergency warning system, which consists of posting signs at the Broadway Lake Dam and upgrading the tornado siren with an additional signal, designated to alert residents of lake level changes. Anderson County Sheriff's Deputy Ray Graham, who is assigned to Broadway Lake, will monitor and manage the gate operation throughout the process.

"Upgrading the existing tornado siren at McFall's Landing with an additional warning signal will greatly benefit residents and patrons of Broadway Lake and Broadway Creek,” said Matt Schell.  “Residents should be aware that once the siren is activated, the flood control gates will open within 15 minutes. The warning system will increase the level of security and awareness associated with the fall of lake elevation, while not incurring any cost to taxpayers."


WRIX AIM Auction Thursday

WRIX 103.1 FM will hold a Chistmas auction for Anderson Interfaith Ministries Thursday from 7-11 a.m. with 100 percent of the money raised going directly to AIM.  Items include Chick-Fil-A bowl tickets, hunting trips, concert tickets, gift packages and more

You can also bid on many items online at the following link:


United Way Plans MLK Day of Service Jan. 14

The African American Leadership Council of United Way of Anderson County is gearing up for its 5th Annual MLK Day On Day of Service. In years past, the organization has recruited hundreds of volunteers to perform community service projects around the county and collected and provided supplies for non profit organizations.

“The council tries to be on the pulse of the community by providing services that are pertinent to those in need”, stated Lynn Scott, Director of Marketing for United Way. “This year, the council has decided to reach out and touch the homeless population in our community. We are collecting new blankets and socks to be distributed to the homeless. There are hundreds of homeless individuals and families in Anderson County. While they may not be as visible here as in some of the larger cities, they are here. We have to make sure this population in our community is taken care of”.

On Friday January 14, 2011, the African American Leadership Council will distribute the blankets, socks and soup to the homeless population in Anderson.  

“As we look around, there are constant reminders that so many in our community are in need. Many lack very basic necessities. Through this effort, the African American Leadership Council hopes to provide for some of those basic needs. Friday’s event will afford us yet another opportunity to reach out to our community and demonstrate that it is much more blessed to give than to receive.”

Items can be dropped off at United Way of Anderson County at 907 N. Main St. between the hours of 9am and 5pm. They would like to have all items collected by January 10th.  

For more information, please contact Lynn Scott at (864) 226-3438.


District Five Posts Superior Advanced Placement Scores  

Students in Anderson School District Five posted a 77 percent success rate on the 2010 Advanced Placement exams, the sixth highest average among the state’s 85 school districts. 

District Five’s success rate, the percentage of exams on which students scored 3 or higher, is also the highest among the state’s 15 largest school districts.

T.L. Hanna High School posted a success rate of 84 percent, tied for fourth highest among the state’s high schools. Westside High School posted a success rate of 61 percent.

“These numbers reflect the hard work of our students, teachers and administrators,” said District Five Superintendent Betty Bagley. “Our goal is to build on these numbers and continue to improve our performance.”

Students generally receive college credit for scores of 3 or above on AP exams. National state, district and school success rates represent the percentage of students who score between 3 and 5 on the exams.


Dist. 5 Helps 196 Homeless Students for Christmas

Lisa Hall, homeless program liaison for District Five, stands with just a portion of the presents donated to homeless students this year. All 196 homeless students in District Five will receive Christmas presents through donations from District Five schools and student groups, individuals, and community groups and businesses including First Presbyterian Church, Aeropostale and New Springs Church Home Groups. Thanks to all for their generosity.


United Way to Honor Dr. Mack Burris

United Way of Anderson County is pleased to announce that Dr. William “Mack” Burriss has been selected as the 2010 Communitarian of The Year.  Dr. Burris was chosen by the past recipients of the award for his tireless dedication to the education system of Anderson School District 5, the state education system and to his veterinary practice.

Dr. Burriss graduated from Boys High School in Anderson, SC in 1939. He attended The Citadel then transferred to Auburn University and graduated with a degree in Veterinary Medicine in 1943. Dr. Burriss practiced veterinary medicine n Anderson until his retirement in 1982. He has been elected to nine 4-year terms on School District Five Board of Trustees. His last term on the school board ended November 2010. He was twice named to the All-State Board by the SC State School Board Association. 

Throughout its history, Anderson has been blessed with outstanding leaders who have pioneered thoughts, ideas and initiatives that have resulted in our community being a better, brighter, and healthier community in which to live, work and raise families. Many of these persons are remembered for or are associated with one particular cause or initiative in Anderson.  There are other leaders who have distinguished themselves by their work, guidance and philanthropy for all segments of the Anderson community. These leaders possess one common trait- they understand that they must work and support initiatives that benefit all of the community- every neighborhood, every faith, every organization, and every individual. These COMMUNITARIANS set the example for others by their genuine care for the Anderson community.

The vision of United Way of Anderson County is to be a leader of a community collaborative effort to create and sustain a healthy, secure, and caring Anderson County. Recipients of the Communitarian Award exemplify this vision through their dedication and commitment to helping make Anderson County become the best it can be.

Past recipients of the award are 2004 - Mr. Fred Foster; 2005 – Dr. Becky Campbell; 2006 – Mr. D. Kirk Oglesby, Jr.; 2007 – Mrs. Lila F. Albergotti; 2008 – Mr. James T. (JT) Boseman; 2009 – Dr. Harold and Mrs. Julie Morse.

The Communitarian Banquet honoring Dr. Burriss will be held on Thursday, January 20, 2011 at 7:00pm at Tuckers Restaurant. Tickets for the event are $50 per person. For additional information or to purchase tickets, call United Way of Anderson County at (864) 226-3438.


AU's Neal Named South Atlantic Player of the Week  

Anderson University senior guard Alexa Neal has been named the South Atlantic Conference women’s basketball Player of the Week, as announced by the conference office Monday afternoon. 

“We are very proud that Alexa has been noticed by the conference,” Anderson head coach Jim Brunelli said. “She stepped up her game once conference play started and has been gaining a lot of confidence. Alexa has been filling up her stat line and helping the team win.” 

Neal scored a season-high, game-high 19 points, including 14 in the decisive first half to help lead Anderson to a double-digit road win at Mars Hill on Saturday. The victory stretched AU’s win streak to four games and enabled the Trojans to stay perfect at 2-0 in the early conference slate.

The 5-foot-8 guard also handed out a game-high seven assists to go along with four blocked shots and two steals. Neal’s rare four-point play with just more than a minute remaining in the first half gave AU a 37-29 advantage just before Amanda Parris buried her season-high third 3-pointer of the afternoon to give the Trojans a 40-29 lead at the break.  

The Greensboro, N.C., native also connected on 6-of-7 from the free throw line on the afternoon.