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October 21, 2016
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MainStreet Family Urgent Care building office in Valley
MainStreet Family Urgent Care building office in Valley

Work is under way on what will be a new urgent care off Highway 29 in Valley. It will be located just down the hill from Renasant Bank and is on schedule to be open in January. Headquartered in Birmingham, MainStreet Family Urgent Care currently has six locations in Alabama and is expanding in rural communities located in the east-central portion of the state. The above on-site groundbreaking took place at 10 a.m. EDT on Friday, Oct. 14. It was hosted by the Greater Valley Area Chamber of Commerce. From left, are Emile Hughes, director of operations, MainStreet; Crystal Autry, teller, and Nancy Warren-Holland, branch manager, Renasant Bank, Valley; Ashley Crane, executive director, GVACC; Sam Eskildsen, CEO, Kalyn Cabral, community education, Betsy Stewart, director of marketing, and Katherine Whitson, senior talent acquisition manager, all of MainStreet. (Photo by Wayne Clark)


VALLEY — A new urgent care is on the way to the local area. Construction is now under way in the parking lot in front of the West Corp. building on Highway 29 for a new 3,200-square-foot building that will house MainStreet Family Urgent Care.

Maxus Construction is doing the work, and a tentative opening date is set for January 2017.

There's a huge sign beside the heavily-traveled four-lane that marks the spot. "We are excited and grateful for the opportunity to serve communities like Valley, Lanett, Huguley, Beulah and Cusseta," said MainStreet CEO Sam Eskildsen. "We consider our staff and our patients as one family, and in a time of need we help get our family members feeling better, fast.

"Our hope is that by offering patients the convenience of shorter wait times and same-day appointments with trained, certified providers, we will be making healthcare accessible to everyone in Valley and the surrounding area."

The 3,200-square-foot facility will feature multiple exam rooms, on-site lab testing and X-ray capabilities. The clinic will not only provide treatment for everyday illnesses like flu and strep throat but will also offer a number of diagnostic tests and some minor procedures, such as suturing and foreign object removal.

The new clinic will be delivering a variety of occupational health services such as worker's compensation management, pre-employment drug testing and DOT-required physicals. MainStreet Family Urgent Care will have services ranging from school and sports physicals for young people and safety training and certification for those in the work force.

MainStreet Family Urgent Care will be open seven days a week with extended hours. "Our aim is to make health care easier for patients," says Betsy Stewart, director of marketing. "We'll have an in-house pharmacy that will carry commonly-prescribed medicines. This will save patients the time and expense of having to make a trip to a pharmacy. Customers can schedule appointments through our website and Facebook page. This will help them secure a time that fits their packed, busy schedule."

MainStreet's medical director, Timothy "Timbo" Taylor, M.D., says the new clinic will be state of the art. "We think it will advance the delivery of quality and efficient health care services to patients," he said. "It is our sincere hope that through our convenient services and friendly staff, we will help make the ordeal of being sick or injured much more bearable than it would otherwise be. We want each person coming to see us feel that they have received the best of care."

When the doors of MainStreet Family Urgent Care-Valley open in January, there will be a grand opening event that will be announced in advance so that a big turnout will be there for this special day in the community.

"For more information, visit our website at www.mainstreetfamilycare.com," Stewarts says. "We'd also appreciate it if you like us on Facebook or e-mail us at: info@mainstreetfamilycare.com."

About MainStreet

MainStreet Family Urgent Care is committed to helping its patients heal better and feel better fast. Headquartered in Birmingham, Ala., MainStreet Family Urgent Care serves Alabama's moderate-sized communities such as Sylacauga, Valley and Eufaula by providing quality health care with hometown convenience, compassion and cost effectiveness. Along with a full range of urgent care services, MainStreet Family Urgent Care delivers a variety of preventative, wellness and occupational health services. MainStreet currently has six locations in the state.

Jack O'Lantern Lane offers family fun especially around Halloween
Jack O'Lantern Lane offers family fun especially around Halloween


VALLEY — This is a very busy month for Glenn and Tammy Morgan, who live off Highway 50 a few miles west of LaFayette. As the owners and operators of Jack O'Lantern Lane, they play host to lots of people this time of year.

Families not just from Chambers County but also from the east central Alabama-west central Georgia region flock to Jack O'Lantern Lane in October to enjoy the fun of taking an old-fashioned wagon ride to a pumpkin patch and picking their own pumpkin for Halloween. While in this welcoming area in the countryside they can enjoy a family picnic, pick up some freshly ground corn meal and enjoy a wide variety of homemade ice cream.

The Morgans have been doing this for the past 12 years. They got the idea of having a pumpkin patch from their daughter who was in elementary school at Chambers Academy at the time. "She and her classmates took a trip to a pumpkin patch that was about two-and-a-half hours away," Tammy told members of the Valley Lions Club at a recent meeting. "On the way back we talked about how much fun it would be if we had one in Chambers County."

At that time, the property that's now Jack O'Lantern Lane was vacant. The previous owner had been killed in an automobile accident, and the Morgans were asked to help take care of the property until it could be sold. "We had two young daughters in Chambers Academy at the time," she explained, "We were asked to do a mock pumpkin patch, just to see how it would work, that first year.

"Our church, LaFayette First Baptist, wanted us to follow it up the next year. We did, and 10 years later we're still going."

It takes lots of hard work throughout the year for Jack O'Lantern Lane to be the continuing success it is. It's open to the public starting in late September and continues through Oct. 31. During regular operating hours — noon till 5 p.m. CDT on Fridays, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturdays and noon till 6 p.m on Sundays — no reservations are needed this time of year.

There's an $8 admission fee per person. This covers the wagon ride to the pumpkin patch, where your family can pick the pumpkin of your choice. Children under two years of age are admitted free.

What really keeps the Morgans busy this time of year are the visits by school groups and day care centers. These are done by reservations and take place Mondays through Fridays. On some days, hundreds of children are there to enjoy an outdoor setting and the thrill of seeing big pumpkins growing in a field.

When you have something good going on, you don't have to bend over backward to get the word out about it. "Typically, the schools call us," Tammy said, "and they're not just local. We get calls from many surrounding counties."

Families coming on the weekends love the good food that's prepared for them. "We have hamburgers, hot dogs, boiled peanuts, homemade ice cream and sweet treats," she adds. "People like to sit on the porch and watch their kids."

The porch is attached to a rustic country store where visitors can take their time browsing the many unique items they can find there while the kids are having fun on inflatables and rides on a miniature train.

Though lots of hard work on a year round basis is necessary to make Jack O'Lantern Lane the success it is, it's not a full-time job for the Morgans. By day, Tammy is the executive director of a non-profit organization in Auburn and Glenn runs a backhoe business.

Glenn has gotten pretty good at growing pumpkins. He's had one that weighed a whopping 209 pounds. "The soil we have here in Chambers County isn't ideal for pumpkin growing," he said, making the point that it takes patience, perseverance, and a little know how to over come that.

"If you think it's hard to grow one, imagine growing 8,000," he said.

Tammy loves the farm life. "I'm a farmer's daughter," she said. "When I got off the school bus at the end of the day, I couldn't see our house for the crops."

After three years of being caretakers of the property, the Morgans were able to purchase it around 10 years ago. The heirs of the original owner knew it was going to be in good hands with them, and it has been. What was once a rodeo setting and a restaurant is now a pumpkin patch and country store.

Jack O'Lantern Lane has played host to a county fair and skeet shooting. "We have a 10-station course," Glenn says. "We've helped raise close to $70,000 for different causes."

Visitors can mine for gems, get their faces painted and at times enjoy being at a petting zoo.

Glenn likes to talk about the trials he's gone through in growing pumpkins. He plants nine different varieties each growing season. He's found that Appalachians are the best for our climate and soil. He's had some invaluable assistance in doing this from Dr. Joe Wendell of Auburn University. "He's an expert on this if there ever was one," he said. "He's helped us a lot, and we appreciate what he's done for us.'

Having grown lots of them over the past 12 years, Glenn has gained an appreciation of what it means to be a pumpkin farmer. "Most people who see pumpkins when they go to Walmart have no idea of what it took to grow them," he said.

One thing he's found out over the years is that they really like potassium. "It's like they're on steroids when they get that," he jokes. "They can get really, really big."

There are lots of contests during pumpkin season. Prizes include T-shirts, wrist bands that cover the cost of gem mining, hayrides with pumpkins and vouchers. "We can't wait to see you," says Tammy.

Bull-O-Ween will feature rodeo and cooking contest
Bull-O-Ween will feature rodeo and cooking contest


LaFAYETTE — On Saturday, Oct. 29, the Chambers County Agricultural Arena in LaFayette will be transformed into a spooky, smokey site. The inaugural Bull-O-Ween and James C. Morgan Cook-Off will feature bull riding and barrel racing, Halloween treats for children and a Kansas City-style barbecue contest.

Sanctioned by the Southeastern Professional Rodeo Association and the International Professional Rodeo Association, a Southern Youth Bull and Barrels event will begin at 1 p.m., with professional bull riding at 7 p.m. In between, Solomon's Masonic Lodge 74 of LaFayette will host a barbecue ribs cooking contest named in memory of former Chambers County Sheriff James C. Morgan.

Rules and regulations for the cook-off are the same as those used by the Kansas City Barbecue Society. Setup will begin at noon, and the entry fee is $65 per team. All proceeds benefit local Masonic charities.

The winning recipe will be awarded a first-place trophy and a Henry lever action .22-caliber rifle. Second place receives $130 cash.

For additional information about the contest, contact D.J. McElvy at 334-276-0439.

All-day admission to the family-oriented event is $12 for adults and $7 for children ages 4-12. Children 3 and under will be admitted free of charge.

In addition, all children ages 10 and under who arrive in Halloween costumes receive a discount, which also applies to church youth groups.

Other attractions include vendors and a mechanical bull, plus plenty of free parking.

For more information, call 334-864-9729.

Sports Sports icon 1 Sports icon 1 Sports icon 1 Sports icon 1

No. 5 CA Rebels battle No. 8 Abbeville for region championship
No. 5 CA Rebels battle No. 8 Abbeville for region championship

By Scott Sickler

Times-News Sports Editor

LaFAYETTE — They’ve been waiting for a game of this magnitude at Chambers Academy’s Torbert Field for a long, long time — 16 years in fact. The last time a Rebels football team won a region championship was in 2000 and they then advanced to the state finals for the second straight season.

Well, it’s now here and a reality for coach Jason Allen’s unbeaten and No. 5-ranked Rebels (8-0, 4-0) as CA faces the back-to-back defending AISA 1A state champion and No. 10-ranked Abbeville Academy Generals (6-3, 4-0) for the region title and with it, the right to host the first two rounds of the 1A state playoffs.

The Rebels have met all challenges this year and when they battled adversity and could have packed it in, they performed like champions. CA answered the bell, came back stronger than ever, forced its will on the opposition and posted a pair of stirring, come-from-behind wins over then ranked No. 5 Lowndes Academy (77-48) and Northside Methodist of Dothan (49-46).

When you want to find out what your team is made of, see how they perform under pressure, under adversity and when they’re called out and challenged.

CA has proven its manhood this fall and are a confident team with talented, skill players on both sides of the line, a lot of depth and a terrific senior class with leadership skills second to none.

Senior quarterback Malik Lyons is the Rebels go-to man who makes it all happen. He’ll go down as one of the best players in CA history.

“This is a big game for our program if we want to take the next step forward,” Allen said. “Abbeville presents a huge challenge and we will have to play turnover-free ball to give ourselves a chance. They say to be the man, you’ve got to beat the man and Abbeville has been the man the last two years. They will bring in an athletic team that expects to win. They play very aggressively, offensively and defensively. We will need to match that aggression but yet still play in the framework of our system. This will be a big one and we relish the opportunity to suit up and get it on,” Allen added.

Confident Troup Tigers seek seventh straight win
Confident Troup Tigers seek seventh straight win

By Scott Sickler

Times-News Sports Editor

LaGRANGE — With six straight wins and beaming with confidence, the surging Troup Tigers (6-1, 3-0) are one win away from securing a chance to play in its first region championship game in 20 years as coach Tanner Glisson’s team hosts the Cedartown Bulldogs tonight in a crucial GHSA 4A-Region 5 matchup at Callaway Stadium.

Troup last played in a region championship game in 1996 against rival LaGrange.

The Tigers have not won a region title since claiming back-to-back 3A titles in the 1986 and 1987 seasons under coach Steve James.

Troup has three region contests left — Cedartown tonight, Central-Carrollton next week on the road and at No. 1-ranked and defending and undefeated state champion Cartersville.

The first task and business to take care of is a win over Cedartown this evening in a rare Thursday contest.

A school with a lot of tradition, Cedartown is 5-2 on the season and has just one loss in region play.

A Troup win and the Tigers will be 4-0 in region play and tied at the top with the No. 1-ranked Purple Hurricanes, winners of 22 straight games.

It’s been a remarkable, turnaround season for Glisson’s Tigers this fall and one of the big reasons for Troup’s success has been standout play at quarterback from junior Montez Crowe.

In last week’s 37-26 win over rival LaGrange, Crowe completed 12-of-18 passes for 200 yards and one interception with three scoring strikes of 69, 21 and eight yards.

After just seven games this season, Crowe has already broken the school record for passing yardage in a season, surpassing the mark set by Dustin Ward, coach Glisson told The Times-News Wednesday.

Crowe has completed 66-of-127 passes (52 percent) for 1,252 yards and 14 TD strikes and five interceptions. He has a quarterback rating of 106.8 as the 6-5 youngster is really coming into his own and a Division I prospect in 2018.

Crowe’s top three targets have been Kobe Hudson, Chanse Hill and Ken Truitt.

Hudson has 15 receptions for 493 yards (a Jerry Rice-like 32.9 yards per reception) and seven TDs. Hill has pulled in 14 passes for 135 yards and three scores while Truitt has 13 receptions for 237 yards and three TDs.

“Tonight is the biggest game of the year so far,” Glisson said. “They (Cedartown) are 5-2 and only have one loss in the region and that was to No. 1 Cartersville. We have everything that we've worked for right in front of us. We win and we play for a championship and can finish no worse than second with a home playoff game in the first- round. It has been a quick turnaround after beating LaGrange but we have to be dialed in.”

No. 5 Lanett, No. 4 LaFayette region title showdown Friday
No. 5 Lanett, No. 4 LaFayette region title showdown Friday

By Scott Sickler

Times-News Sports Editor

LaFAYETTE — It just doesn’t get any more important than Friday’s 2A-Region 5 region championship showdown between long-time rivals Lanett, ranked No. 5 (8-1, 6-0) against undefeated and No. 4-ranked LaFayette (8-0, 6-0) here at Bulldogs Stadium.

LaFayette High officials expect a record crowd in the 46th all-time meeting between the two schools.

Lanett leads the series with a commanding 34-10-1 mark in a series which began in 1926.

The Panthers and the Bulldogs have played a lot of big games through the years, been a number of upsets a long the way and memories for a lifetime but Friday’s “Clash of the Titans” is, without question, the biggest matchup ever played with what is on the line and perhaps numerous home playoff games as well.

The Lanett-LaFayette winner will not only be crowned region champion but will host a first-round playoff game and perhaps a second-round as well. Second through semifinal round games are determined on a week-to-week basis by which school traveled the long distance in the previous round.

LaFayette won the first game in the series but did not win again until 1984. That’s also somewhat misleading as the schools only played 16 games from 1926 to 1984.

From 1928 to 1983, Lanett went 12-0-1.

The Panthers longest winning streak was 11 games while the Bulldogs longest streak was four from 2002-05 when LaFayette smashed Lanett 40-6, 27-0, 60-14 and 22-17.

Lanett’s Clifford Story, a 1992 LaFayette High grad and former standout quarterback, offers his thoughts on the rivalry.

“The Lanett and LaFayette game Friday is the biggest in the history of the rivalry for sure,” Story said. “The region title is on the line and possibly the first two playoff games. I have a lot of ties in LaFayette. I am a ’92 graduate of LaFayette and I love the city. I am only against LaFayette when Lanett plays them. It will be a championship atmosphere with athletes all over the field. I have a great deal of respect for the players, coaches, and the community. I look forward to kickoff and to coach in a game of this magnitude.”

Story is the dean of local coaches and is in his eighth season (47-34) leading Lanett. He’s 5-2 in seven previous games against LaFayette. He’s also won one region championship, that coming in the record-setting 2013 season led by Marlon “MJ” Bridges.

LaFayette coach James Lucas is in his third season at the school (15-14) and is 0-2 vs. Lanett.


Obituaries for Thursday, October 20, 2016
Obituaries for Thursday, October 20, 2016


VALLEY — Miss Toni Charmagne Bailey, 31, of Valley passed away Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2016, at East Alabama Medical Center in Opelika, Ala.

Funeral services will be held Friday, Oct. 21 at 3 p.m. at Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home Chapel in Valle with Pastors Aubrey and Iris Adams officiating. Burial will follow at Evangel Temple Church Cemetery in Lanett.

Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home in Valley is in charge of arrangements.


LANETT — Funeral services are pending for Mrs. Odessa Banks, 91, of Lanett, who passed away Thursday, Oct. 20, 2016, at LaFayette Extended Care in LaFayette.

Silmon-Seroyer Funeral Home in LaFayette is in charge of arrangements.


ATLANTA — Ms. Belinda Penn, 45, of Lithia Springs, Ga., passed away Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016, at Wellstar Atlanta Medical Center in Atlanta.

Home going celebration services will be held Saturday, Oct. 22 at 1:30 p.m. (viewing 1-1:30 p.m.) at Elizabeth Baptist Church in Atlanta. Burial will follow at Mt. Harmony Memorial Gardens.

Murray Brothers Funeral Home in Atlanta is in charge of arrangements.


DAYTON, Ohio — Funeral services are pending for Mr. Henry Vines Jr., 63, of Dayton, formerly of LaFayette, who passed away Thursday, Oct. 13, 2016, at Grandview Hospital in Dayton.

Silmon-Seroyer Funeral Home in LaFayette is in charge of arrangements.

Obituaries for Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Obituaries for Wednesday, October 19, 2016


LANETT — Funeral services are pending for Mr. Jimmie Mays, who, died Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2016, at EAMC-Lanier Hospital in Valley.

Morgan and Sons Funeral Home in Lanett is in charge of arrangements.


FIVE POINTS, Ala. — Mrs. Mae Doris Wright, 89, of Five Points passed away Saturday, Oct. 15, 2016, at EAMC-Lanier Hospital in Valley.

Funeral services will be held Thursday, Oct. 20 at 1 p.m. CDT at Mt. Pleasant United Methodist Church in Five Points with the Rev. James S. Wright, pastor, officiating. Burial will follow at the church cemetery.

Silmon-Seroyer Funeral Home in LaFayette is in charge of arrangements.


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