Archive - News Article
November 5th, 2012
First Baptist Church in Downtown Benton will be serving as a relay center for Operation Christmas Child in Saline County.
Lisa Baldwin, a volunteer for the project, noted that this is "a worldwide children's relief project that uses gift-filled shoe boxes to let hurting boys and girls know that they are loved and not forgotten."
She said this is a division of Samaritan's Purse, an international Christian relief organization headed by Franklin Graham, son of famed evangelist Billy Graham.
Margaret Herzfeld, a member of First Baptist Church, is organizing the local relay center.
Today is the final day in Saline County to vote early for the Nov. 6 general election. Only the Benton site will be open today, between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. at the county voting facility in Benton ("Vote Here" building adjacent to the Saline County Annex). The Bryant and Lonsdale area early voting locations will not be open today.
Thus far, 21,861 ballots have been cast from early voters in Saline County, according to tallies from the Saline County Clerk's Office.
Lisa Baldwin, coordinator of the Saline County Christmas Parade, said the theme of the 2012 event is "simple but glorious": That theme is "Angels."
The annual event is scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 4, iin Downtown Benton.
Group organizers are hoping that many of the entries will capture "a bright and heavenly theme," Baldwin said.
Individuals and organizations wishing to participate in the parade may pick up registration forms at the Benton Area Chamber of Commerce, Books and Baubles and Paradise Pets, all located in Downtown Benton.
In addition to the presidential election, arguably the most discussed topic for voters concerns Issue 5, which would legalize marijuana in Arkansas for medicinal purposes.
While the support group â€” Arkansans for Compassionate Care â€” is asking voters to have "compassion" and agree that marijuana will help people with serious illnesses, there are many state leaders who say there is more to Issue 5 than what voters realize.
*Published in the Courier Friday. A small selection of articles is available online, but for full access to content, subscribe to our print edition today.
Nearly 18,000 ballots have been cast from early voters in the Nov. 6 general election, according to tallies from the Saline County Clerk's Office.
The exact total thus far is 17,952, which included 1,826 ballots on Wednesday.
Broken down by specific sites, that number included 941 in Benton, 664 in Bryant and 221 in the Lonsdale area.
A Benton woman was arrested on Friday for 23 counts of animal cruelty, authorities said.
As of press time, 48-year-old Dorothy Rhonda Braithwaite remains in the Saline County jail with a $2,500 sheriff's bond. She is expected to appear in Benton District Court on Nov. 13.
Lt. Kevin Russell, public information officer for the Benton Police Department, said there is no indication that Braithwaite was selling the animals or part of an illegal "puppy mill." He said authorities do not anticipate any more arrests; however, the investigation is continuing.
A convicted murderer from Saline County is back in custody after eluding authorities for three days.
Curtis Dewain Reese Jr., who was serving a 30-year sentence for a double homicide in 1998, had escaped from an Arkansas Department of Correction facility on Monday and captured by authorities on Thursday.
Reese, 33, was found inside a cave in Cleburne County, near Pangburn in White County. Correction Department spokeswoman Shea Wilson said authorities had received information that Reese was in the area. She noted that he was taken into custody without incident.
With diet-related health issues on the rise, many people are looking for ways to be healthier these days. One way to do this while also bringing the community together is through community gardens.
Some say interest in gardening is arising because of concern about the source of foods.
"If you eat a grape in December, it's got to come all the way from Chile," said Bruce Shraeder of Zion Lutheran Church in Avilla.
â€śThe only thing that can stop you is yourself.â€ť
This is the motto Chris Madison adopted at the tender age of 10 after an accident on Lake Hamilton left him with a prosthetic leg and an appreciation for life most youth never experience.
Madison, staff attorney for the city of Bryant, explained what happened.
â€śIt was boat versus jet ski. The jet ski and I lost. I was fortunate my head didnâ€™t get in the propeller,â€ť Madison recalled.
Construction cones and torn-up roads are familiar sights for people who have traveled Lower Military Road lately. With the construction comes the associated frustration of residents who do not feel progress is being made.
The inconvenience of drivers is compounded by the impact the construction has on businesses located along the roadway.
Lisa Spencer of Lisa's Bait Shop says the construction has been detrimental for her and her business. "It's killing it," she said.
"People can't even get to me," Spencer said.