Elk River Cleanup Benefits More Than Canoes, Kayakers and Anglers
The Elk River skirting the northern and western boundaries of Limestone County is more than just a recreational trail for hundreds of canoers, kayakers and anglers annually. The Elk River serves as the drinking water source for much of Limestone County making it a crucial waterway to keep clean. This is where local organization, Keep Athens-Limestone Beautiful along with the Tennessee Valley Authority and their volunteers come to the rescue each March.
In 2016, Keep Athens-Limestone Beautiful along with the Tennessee Valley
Authority and dozens of volunteers on land and water removed over 4,000 lbs of trash with only 1,460 lbs of it recyclable. Canoers, kayakers and fishing boats returned to the ramp hauling an array of items including plastic lawn furniture and discarded tires and bags full of trash.
Groups along shore gathered mountains of waste as well as they strolled the scenic riverbanks. The items recovered were either discarded directly into the river or washed down the watershed endangering not only watercraft, but swimmers, wildlife and the community's water quality.
Keep Athens-Limestone Beautiful will be returning to the river on March 4, 2017 to again clean the shores and waterways and are looking for volunteers of all ages who want to lend a hand in keeping our drinking water clean. Volunteers should bring gloves and wear long sleeves and pant and remember sunscreen and bug repellent for additional protection. Volunteers are welcome to bring their watercraft and come the waters for floating or submerged garbage.
Volunteers who work from 8:00 a.m. until noon will enjoy a lunch (pre-registration required) and your name will be entered into a drawing for prizes. More information, register and reserve a lunch at
256-233-8000 or email KALBCares@gmail.com. Register to volunteer digitally
Great Backyard Bird Count: Join the Count in Our Backyard
Athens-Limestone is fortunate to have an amazing collection of natural spaces that are available to the public to explore. From city and county parks to the shores of the Tennessee and Elk Rivers to the collection of trails -- these spaces are teeming wildlife, especially birds. These amazing opportunities to birdwatch lends itself well to the annual Great Backyard Bird Count sponsored by Audubon, The Cornell Lab of Ornithology and Bird Studies Canada.
The Great Backyard Bird Count or GBBC was started in 1998 to use citizen-scientist to help collect data on birds and display it in real time. Each February over 160,000 people all over the world contribute data to the project having identified 5,689 species. Each year's list of a variety of birds is generated based on location that feature species that they hope to find or have small numbers recorded previously.
This year's list for Limestone County includes Bald Eagles, Belted Kingfishers, Barn Owls, Pine Warblers, House Finches among the over 160 types of birds they are seeking information on. The list is available at gbbc.birdcount.org under GBBC Tool Kit > Bird List. The list offers links with most birds names so you see what they look like or you can download the Merlin Bird ID app to your phone for when you're on the go.
The GBBC is great opportunities for bird lovers, girl scouts, boy scouts, home schools and community schools to explore their feathered neighbors and help in the collection of data. The bird count can take as little 15 minutes, in the location of your choice and simple tools of paper and pen for recording species, tallying numbers of each and noting where, when and how long you watched. You can explore detailed instruction on gbbc.birdcount.org under GBBC Tool Kit > Instructions.
Here are just a few suggestion of areas of Limestone County that are awaiting you for this year's GBBC from February 17-20:
Limestone County woman tells cancer: ‘You picked the wrong person’
“Cancer, you have picked the wrong person this time,” she told the disease.
Stanford now is cancer free but still helping battle the disease. As secretary of the Limestone County Cattlemen’s Association, she is working with the City of Athens Relay for Life Team to host a ribeye steak sandwich fundraiser for the American Cancer Society on March 31 in Athens. The luncheon will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Friendship United Methodist Church. Tickets are $10 each. Members from Cattlemen’s will prepare the steaks on site.
"When I was diagnosed with cancer, I thought about what a tough fight I had ahead of me with chemo and/or radiation,” Stanford said. “Little did I know the type cancer I had didn’t respond to either. I am clear of cancer at this time, but there is always the chance it could come back. If it does, I hope researchers have found a way to fight it. Supporting Relay for Life is very important to me. Money raised goes for research, so just maybe it will save my life, or someone who has the same type cancer as I do."
According to the American Cancer Society’s latest data, in 2015, it spent $151 million on cancer research, $348 million on patient support programs, $123 million on prevention information/education programs and $87 million on detection and treatment.
“Daveen is working with us to get supplies at a good price so we can raise as much as possible from this fundraiser for the American Cancer Society,” said City of Athens Relay for Life Captain Holly Hollman. “We hope to serve about 600 people, and I believe our community will help us reach that goal.”
Hollman said the community already is responding. Friendship United Methodist Church offered to host the event. Athens Rotary is having its weekly luncheon at the event. Athens High School choir director John Malone is bringing 40 talented students to provide inspirational singing, and CDPA is sponsoring them for lunch.
“It motivates us as a team to see farmers, an accounting firm, a church, high school students, community leaders and city employees work together to show cancer that as a community, we are like Daveen. We mean business,” Hollman said. “We will not sit idly by. We will continue the fight.”
Tickets are pre-sale only so organizers can obtain the needed amount of supplies. Tickets are available from Stanford, Hollman, city Relay team members and by calling City Hall at 256-233-8730. The luncheon is dine in or carry out. Relay members will deliver large orders in the Athens area.
The City of Athens Relay for Life Team has other fundraisers underway as well. This year’s countywide theme is “Passport to a Cure.” To coincide with that theme, the City Team is selling T-shirts with the slogan “Light the Journey with Hope.” The purple Comfort Color T-shirts have a lighthouse shining over the world and a star for Athens, Ala., on the globe. Short sleeve shirts are $15 and long sleeve are $20. The team is taking pre-orders through Friday, Feb. 10, and is ordering only a few extra shirts. To pre-order, call Vicky Dowd at 256-233-8730 or email Holly Hollman at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The annual City of Athens Relay for Life Bass Fishing Tournament is earlier this year, so save the date for April 8 at Ingalls Harbor in Decatur. More details are coming soon. The City of Athens Relay for Life Celebrity Waiters Night also is in the planning stages.
Relay for Life of Limestone County will host its countywide celebration on May 12 at the Sportsplex. Those interested in participating as a team can contact American Cancer Society Community Manager Cherry Hammonds at 256-221-3926.
Ribeye Sandwich Funraiser
City of Athens Relay for Life/Cattlemen’s Ribeye Sandwich Fundraiser Sponsored by CDPA
When: Friday, March 31, 2017
Where: Friendship United Methodist Church
Time: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Cost: $10 (includes sandwich, chips and drink)
Get Tickets: Call Athens City Hall at 256-233-8730
Additional Info: Dine in or carry out. Music provided by Athens High School Choir.
Tom Parker, associate justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, is coming to the Athens-Limestone County Public Library on Tuesday, February 21st, to present a talk on the Christian foundations of early American law. He will give the talk twice on the same day, once from 3:00 to 4:00 and again from 6:00 to 8:00. Both presentations are free and open to the public.
The event is hosted by the Limestone County Republicans. Noah Wahl, chairman of the LCR says, “We’re pleased to bring Justice Parker to the Athens area. Parker has proved himself to be a remarkable constitutional scholar.” As well as the U.S. Constitution, Justice Parker has spent considerable time studying William Blackstone’s Commentaries on the Laws of England, an influential eighteenth century treatise on the common law of England. His discussion will include Blackstone’s Commentaries, its influence, as well as the influence of Christianity, on early American lawmakers.
Hosting an Alabama Supreme Court justice is also a proud moment for Athens-Limestone County Public Library. “The library is excited to welcome Judge Parker,” says Paula Laurita, director of the library. “We go through our daily lives and don’t realize how much of our freedom is based on long legal history. Understanding the basis for those laws is essential to understanding our role at citizens. I look forward to having Judge Parker share some of that rich history with our community.”
Justice Parker was first elected to the Alabama Supreme Court in 2004 and was re-elected in 2010. Previously, he served as the deputy administrative director of courts, where he advised trial court judges, and as the director of the Alabama Judicial College, providing training for new judges and continuing legal education for all the trial judges in Alabama.
ACCLAIMED NOVELIST JIM NESBITT TO CELEBRATE LAUNCH OF NEW NOVEL,
“THE RIGHT WRONG NUMBER” AT HIGH COTTON ARTS CENTER IN ATHENS:
Nesbitt will autograph and discuss The Right Wrong Number
at High Cotton Arts Center on February 16, 2017 beginning at 6:30 PM
ATHENS, Ala. – Acclaimed novelist Jim Nesbitt will celebrate the release of his new novel, The Right Wrong Number with a launch event at High Cotton Arts Center (103 West Washington Street/Athens, AL 35611) on February 16, 2017 beginning at 6:30 PM. The event, part of the Athens Arts League’s “Listening Lounge” series, will feature readings from The Right Wrong Number and a book signing. Fellow Athens author and humor columnist Jerry Barksdale will serve as emcee. The event is free and open to the public.
Nesbitt, an award-winning novelist and well-traveled correspondent, takes readers on a tour de force that races from the gleaming towers of Houston to the stark desert mountains of the Texas Big Bend country and northern Mexico in The Right Wrong Number. Gritty and remorseless, hard-hitting and hard-boiled, The Right Wrong Number features an indelible protagonist, Dallas private eye Ed Earl Burch. He’s smart, tough, profane and reckless: Ed Earl Burch is nobody’s hero—and nobody’s fool.
About The Right Wrong Number: When the phone rings long after midnight, it spells trouble of the lethal kind for Ed Earl Burch. A cashiered homicide detective with bad knees, a wounded liver and an empty bank account, Burch has been hired to protect an old flame after the disappearance of her husband, a high-flying Houston financier who ripped off his clients, including some deeply unsavory gentlemen from New Orleans. It’s a simple job that goes wrong fast, plunging Burch into a ruthless contest where nothing is as it seems and no one can be trusted. Money and sex— twin temptations served up by the old flame, a rangy strawberry blonde with a violent temper and a terminal knack for larceny and betrayal—tempt Burch to break his own rules. But when his best friend gets murdered by hired muscle in Dallas, Burch blames himself and grimly sets out for vengeance.
Bristling with relentless action, a pulse-racer of a plot, a solid storyline, and a colorful cast of characters, The Right Wrong Number is hard-boiled detective fiction at its finest. With his pitch-perfect voice and keen eye for detail, Jim Nesbitt uses the skills honed over decades of deadline journalism to create an extraordinary story centered on a protagonist like no other: the deeply flawed but wildly compelling Ed Earl Burch.
About the author: For more than 30 years, Jim Nesbitt chased presidential candidates, hurricanes, earthquakes, rodeo cowboys, ranchers, neo-Nazis and nuns as a roving correspondent for newspapers and wire services across the country. Also the author of The Last Second Chance, Nesbitt lives in Athens, Alabama. Visit Jim Nesbitt online at: www.jimnesbitthardboiledbooks.com.
Nesbitt has received high praise, including:
“Nesbitt channels the lyricism of James Crumley, the twisted kick of Jim Thompson, and the cold, dark heart of Mickey Spillane.” – Jayne Loader, author of Wild America
“If Chandler’s noir was a neon sign in the LA sunset, Nesbitt’s noir is the Shiner Bock sign buzzing outside the last honky-tonk you’ll hit before the long drive to the next one. Roll down the window; it’s a hot night. It’s a fast ride.”
– James Lileks, author of The Casablanca Tango
“In Burch, Nesbitt has created a more angst-ridden and bad-ass version of Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch and a Tex-Mex landscape much meaner than the streets of LA.” –Bob Morris, Edgar Award nominee and author of Baja Florida
The Right Wrong Number will be published in trade paper (ISBN: 978-0-9983294-0-6, 308 pages, $14.99) and eBook (ISBN: 978-0-9983294-1-3, $4.99) editions and available nationwide in February, 2017. Members of the news media wishing to request additional information about Jim Nesbitt or The Right Wrong Number are asked to contact Maryglenn McCombs by phone: (615) 297-9875, or by email: email@example.com