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News & Sports For January 26th

Expect Traffic Delays On Hwy 268E
The DOT will be working out in Wilkes County today and that means delays for anyone traveling on 268 East. They will be setting girders on 268 East, meaning that only one lane of traffic will be open. That starts this morning at 9am and will wrap up by 4pm this afternoon. DOT workers said to plan for delays when driving on 268 East for the rest of the day.

Wilkes County Asks For A Review Of Rules
County leaders are seeking an outside opinion when it comes to some new guidelines for sexually oriented businesses. The Institute of Government At UNC Chapel Hill has been asked to step in and go over the proposed guidelines, before it’s brought to county commissioners. Under these new rules, any sexually oriented business would have to set up at least half a mile from any church, day care center, home, park, playground, school or swimming pool. A proposal will not be brought before county commissioners until at least March 7th.

3WC Going Phishing: New Credit Card Scam
A new credit card scam could have you willingly turning over information to thieves. In this new scheme, a person calls pretending to be from the fraud department of your bank. He or she will then say that they’re checking up on some unusual purchases recently made with your debit or credit card. They’ll give you their name and also an employee ID badge number. In addition, the person will already have your information on hand, in regards to mailing address and they’ll check to see if that’s correct. Then you’ll be given an explanation as to what the unusual purchase was and after you verify that you didn’t buy the item, they’ll agree to credit your account, saying that the company who charged the account is one that’s been long suspected of fraud. Here’s where the scam takes place. The caller will then inform you that he or she is starting an internal fraud investigation and advises that if you have any questions, just call the 1-800 number given on the back of your card. Then they will ask for your card’s security number, to prove you are in possession of it. The security numbers are on the back of your card. The first four are part of the card number but the last three are what’s known as the security numbers. After receiving these, the caller will ask if you have any questions and then hang up. This can be a serious problem due to the fact if the thieves are only asking for your security number, that means they somehow have already obtained your credit or debit information. Now all they need is your security numbers to go on a spending spree. If this happens to you, do not give out those security numbers. Instead hang up and call your bank or credit card company’s fraud department, to let them know what just happened, then follow their recommendations.

Blood Drive Later Today
42 days. That’s how much time blood can be used after it’s donated. Once that time period passes, it has to be thrown out. With the local supply still at critical levels, poor turnouts at the recent drives hasn’t helped the situation. The Wilkes Red Cross is holding another emergency drive today at Temple Hill Baptist Church. The drive will go on from 3-7:30pm and no appointments are needed. Please remember before giving you must be at least 17 years old and weigh no less than 110 lbs.

Focus On Bikes
When you think of church, motorcycles and leather jackets don’t exactly come to mind. But the biker community is a mission field that we as Christians are called to. That’s where CMA comes in. Kurt and David Hefflin from the Christian Motorcycle Association will be joining Brian on today’s edition of Focus, talking about the different ministries their group is involved in. From food drives to evangelical missions, CMA is involved in a lot of places where the church otherwise doesn't reach and they’ll be sharing testimonies along with explaining how someone could join up. That's coming today at 1:05pm right after the midday stock report.

Cheaper Drugs Coming For Blue Cross Members
Some good news is on the way if you are a member of Blue Cross and Blue Shield. The company announced this week that beginning February 1st, it will be a lot cheaper to get certain generic drugs. Blue Cross’s new co-payment waiver plan will give you the next new prescription for free. That doesn’t mean a new refill of something that you’ve been taking for a while, but rather a generic prescription you’re getting filled for the first time. The drugs covered by the plan are any that deal with chronic conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, depression and high cholesterol. There isn’t any paperwork to do, you just present the Blue Cross ID card when getting the prescription filled. This is however just a one time waiver. When you need a refill the co-payment plan goes back into effect. Also members of the State or Federal Employee Health Plans don’t qualify, because Blue Cross doesn’t cover drug benefits in those plans.

Cheaper Way To File Taxes
Filing taxes this year could be a lot cheaper for people here in North Carolina, thanks to a new plan. The State Department of Revenue announced this week that two companies have agreed to offer free state tax returns through their website. The plan applies to anyone who makes $50,000 a year or less and can be accessed by going to . That will let you link up with either TaxEngine or TaxSimple, the two companies providing the free services.

Man Arrested After Almost Hitting Patrol Car
A local man was arrested earlier this week after he almost hit a patrol car. The incident happened on Murray Road, where deputies were responding to a disturbance. While on their way over, the deputies were informed that one of the subjects had left the residence and drove off, even though he was drunk. The vehicle was soon spotted, as the driver was having problems keeping it on one side of the road. Before he was stopped, the man almost hit a patrol car head on. 52-yr-old Charles Allen Johnson was arrested and charged with DWI and reckless driving. In addition, a small brown glass tube was found on his person that was covered with a white powder, later found to be cocaine. Charges are still pending in regards to drug possession.

Regional News

Road Closed Today
For anyone planning on making the trip to Blowing Rock today, you can expect some delays. US 321 will be shut down due to road construction going on from 12 noon until 2pm. The section of highway affected reaches from Kirby Mountain Road to Blackberry Road in Caldwell County. DOT workers have set up a detour. Drivers are being rerouted from Lenoir to Wilkesboro on Hwy 18, then instructed to take US 421 North to Boone, where you can switch back over to US 321.

State News

$20 Million In Cocaine Seized In Samson County
Officials in Samson County seized 20 million dollars worth of cocaine during an operation on Monday. 27-yr-old Alejandro Moreno-Salgado and 41-yr-old Isais Mareno-Ochea were taken into custody, but officials didn’t provide many details. All they would say is that over 200 kilograms of cocaine was taken but would say where it came from or where it had been going.

Decision On Tuition Could Be Coming Soon
Some bad news today for any high school students planning to attend UNC Chapel Hill next year. Your tuition could be increasing. The UNC Board of Trustees is expected to hand down a decision today regarding next year’s tuition costs. Four separate plans are on the table, each of which would increase tuition at least $200 for in state students and $600 for out of state. An additional $5 million in revenue will be generated by the hike in cost.

Program To Help Needy Families Ripped Off In Morganton
A Morganton program designed to help needy families was itself targeted by thieves this week. The Work and Ride project takes donations of used cars from companies and people in the area, then turns around and gives them to families who would otherwise have to get rides to work. On Monday night, thieves broke into one of the cars, shattering windows and then ripping off a stereo from inside. Estimated damages were placed in the hundreds, money the program doesn’t have.

NC State Athletes Donate Money For Katrina
Student athletes from NC State did their part this week to help hurricane victims. They voted to send $15,000 from the school’s Student Athlete Opportunity Fund to athletes at Southern Mississippi, which was hit hard by hurricanes in 2005.

Gentlemen Start Your Engines
For anyone out there looking to get involved with NASCAR and the motorsports industry, Belmont Abbey can help. The college announced that beginning this fall, they would be offering a four year degree in motorsports, which would include courses in racing management, team management and motorsports fundamentals among other things. After completing the courses, internship programs will be offered at different race tracks and with several racing teams.

Sports Headlines

High School Scoreboard
In high school basketball last night, it was North Wilkes over West 63-61. The Vikings had three players score in double figures, as both Phillip Booker and Brent Whittington put up 17 points, while Stephen Booker added 15. West meanwhile was led by Kurtis Lankford’s 23 points and Chad Lankford added 17. On the girls side of the court, it was North Wilkes over West 53-45. Ashley Wilcox had a monster night for the Lady Vikings, exploding for 29 points including 13 in the fourth quarter. West was only down by one after three quarters but the Lady Vikings held the Lady Blackhawks to just 8 points in the fourth to get the win. Nicole Harris also scored in double figures for North, finishing with 11 while Erin Hollars had 18, Emily Deal had 12 and Lauren Overton had 10 for the Lady Blackhawks.

NCAA Scoreboard
Taking a look at last night’s college scoreboard, it was Gardner-Webb over Campbell 81-70. The Running Bulldogs got 24 points and 10 rebounds from Simon Conn as they improve to 10-9 on the season. In other action the University of Central Florida knocked off East Carolina 64-59, In the ACC, a major upset as 15th ranked NC State fell to Seton Hall 83-65. Tony Bethel had 15 to lead the Wolfpack, who just had no answer for Seton Hall’s Donald Copeland, who lit them up for 22 points. State also had problems beyond the arc, shooting 26% from the 3-point line. The loss drops the Wolfpack to 15-4 on the season. Also Boston College knocked off North Carolina 81-74. Tyler Hansborough had 26 points and 8 rebounds for the Heels, who drop to 11-5 with the loss.

NC State Lands Another Commitment
Good news for the NC State football team, as another high school senior committed to the squad. Wide receiver LaMarcus Bond will step onto the field for State this fall. Bond is currently ranked number seven out of all North Carolina high school prospects. The 5’10 ft. 165 lb. wide receiver runs a 4.34 in the 40 yard dash and is a multiple threat. Last season he returned five punts for touchdowns, two kickoffs, rushed for 1100 yards and also had 8 interceptions. Bond turned down Virginia to join the Wolfpack.

NBA: Charlotte vs. Houston

In the senior circuit of the NBA, it was Houston over the Charlotte Bobcats 102-78. Matt Carroll had 19 points to lead the Bobcats, who drop to 11-32 on the season. Next up will be the Miami Heat this Friday.

NHL: Carolina at Florida
Another winning streak is starting up for the Carolina Hurricanes. Last night they beat the Florida Panthers 4-3 in a game that was decided by a shootout. Eric Cole scored the game winning goal for the Hurricanes, who improve to 34-11, still nine games ahead in the Southeastern Conference.

New Toyota Teams Taking Shape
Toyota’s future as part of NASCAR is starting to take shape. Bill Davis, Michael Waltrip and the Red Bull company will all have Toyota teams in the Nextel Cup circuit in 2007. Each of the teams will have two cars on the field. For Waltrip, he’ll be operating as both an owner and driver when the project gets up and running. Dave Blaney will switch over to Toyota for Bill Davis Racing next year. Currently Blaney is driving the #22 Dodge for Davis. Red Bull officials currently don’t have a driver in place.


News & Sports For January 24th

Wilkesboro Town Commissioner Dies
A Wilkes Town Commissioner is was laid to rest yesterday, as funeral services were held for Tommy Bumgarner. The 64-yr-old Bumgarner died on Friday at Wilkes Regional Hospital and was buried in a service Monday at Pleasant Grove Baptist Church on Hwy 16 North. He was the owner and president of Falcon Insulation Technology and also a Wilkesboro Town Commissioner, having served just over 10 years. Flowers are being accepted or memorials can be sent to the Ebenezer Gardens Christian Childrens’ Home.

Wilkes Students Receive Incomplete Grades
Wilkes County students are going to be waiting a while for their report cards. Usually schools around the state send out report cards in the middle of January, but due to some changes the kids will have to wait a few more months to find out their grades. The state social services curriculum has been altered, as the end of course tests in both history and civics have been replaced. Students who took U.S. History or Civics & Economics last semester have had their tests sent off to Raleigh, where they are being analyzed. After processing the tests, the state board of education will use the scores to determine what it will take to pass in the future. For high school seniors here in Wilkes, they were granted an exemption, with the EOC test kept out of their final grade. In addition, all student athletes are currently being allowed to play based on their grades going into the fall term. Once the new report cards are released, any athletes who fall below the line will be pulled from his/her team. State officials say that they expect the analysis to be finished within a few weeks and students should get their report cards by the first of March.

Gas Thieves Hit North Wilkesboro Run-In
With the price of gas being predicted to climb, some thieves in North Wilkesboro took the opportunity to fuel up for free. A white man pulled up to the Run-In on Statesville Road over the weekend, pumped $49 worth of gas and then took off down the highway without paying. Employees inside the store were able to get both a description of the man and also the car’s license plate, which they turned over to deputies. There is now a suspect in the case and the investigation continues.

Thieves Looking To Clean Up

Who could steal two washing machines and not leave behind any evidence? That’s what a Roaring River man is wondering today. He went out this weekend to check on his two rental properties, each of which had a washer and dryer inside. There was no sign of a break-in, however the washing machines in both homes had been taken, along with the dryers. The thieves had apparently also attempted to remove the heating systems, but couldn’t disconnect them. Over $1800 in damage was done to the property and that investigation continues.

Dog Stolen From Millers Creek Home
A bulldog was stolen over the weekend from a Millers Creek home. The homeowner had tied up the animal outside and went to the grocery store. Witness reports then state that a man came to the home, grabbed the dog and drove off in a Chevy pickup. A description of the thief was turned over to sheriff’s deputies and the investigation continues.

3WC Healthwatch: Cough Syrup Can Cause Problems
The cough medicine you give your kids could actually be bad for them, as we explain in today’s 3WC Healthwatch. A study was released by the Academy of General Dentistry last week, linking cough syrup to tooth erosion. According to Dr. Carolina Covolo Da Costa, who was in charge of the study, children need to brush their teeth immediately after being given the medicine. The reason for this is due to the fact that most cough syrup is generally acidic with no fluoride or any other materials to protect teeth. Once this gets into the mouth, it can start eroding your teeth over time. 70 different samples of tooth enamel were tested and exposed to cough syrup. Those with a cough medicine that didn’t contain fluoride almost immediately showed signs of decay. The cough syrup with fluorine however barely affected the enamel at all. Scientists recommend that parents use cough syrup with fluoride in it, but if not, just have the kids brush their teeth after taking the medicine. And if you want to read the whole article it will be appearing in the February edition of General Dentistry.

Pistol Stolen From North Wilkesboro Home
Sheriff’s deputies were called out to a house in North Wilkesboro over the weekend, after thieves ran off with the homeowner’s gun. He had left the pistol secure under a pillow earlier in the day, but came back that night to find it was gone. Information about the 9mm pistol was turned over to deputies and there is a suspect in the case.

Chainsaw Thief Looking To Stay Warm
Thieves ran off with over a thousand dollars worth of tools after breaking into a building in Purlear. The homeowner lives in Clemmons and uses the house only in the summer, but came by to check up on it over the weekend. He found that masterlocks on two of his storage buildings had been broken and all the tools inside were missing. Included in the theft was a generator, four chainsaws and two drills. There is however a suspect in the case, as locals saw a man around the property. His name and description were both turned over to deputies and the investigation continues.

Regional News

Concern Over Unemployment Leads To Prayer
Caldwell County has one of the highest unemployment rates in the state, currently holding at 8%. Concern over the local economy brought together people from around the area this weekend, to hold a day of prayer. 200 people took part in the event Saturday at the local fairgrounds. Caldwell Sheriff Gary Clark was on hand, as was Congressional Representative Patrick McHenry.

Caldwell Man Dies In Fire
A fire over the weekend in Caldwell County led to the death of one man. The 78-yr-old victim was home alone when the place caught fire and neighbors called 911. By the time firefighters arrived on the scene however, flames had completely engulfed the house and the homeowner was found dead in the kitchen. The man had been home alone due to his wife being in the hospital. It’s still unclear what started the fire.

State News

Hickory Gas Station Issues Warning
A warning is being sent out to anyone who bought kerosene at a certain Hickory station in the last week. A delivery driver mistakenly filled up the kerosene container at the Hickory Citgo Fuel Center with regular gas when he came by January 15th. The store is located at the intersection of Fairgrove Church Road and Highway 70 and is asking anyone who bought kerosene since January 15th to give them a call. The number is 1-828-464-9084 and you can return the gas for a full refund.

Evidence Uncovered In Search For Lee County Woman

Officials in Cumberland County have discovered more evidence they believe could possibly lead to a missing Lee County woman, kidnapped earlier this month. 23-yr-old Michelle Bullard was visiting a friend on January 2nd when a masked man burst into the house, took a few items and grabbed her when he left. Now authorities have found a wallet belonging to Bullard’s friend, abandoned along with a ski mask, some check stubs and a pair of socks at a remote stretch of highway. Officials are offering a $10000 reward for anyone with information that leads to an arrest or Bullard’s safe return. The number to call is 1-910-323-1500.

Secret Deal Raises Questions In Morrisville

Questions are being raised today in Morrisville, about a secret meeting where $1 million in tax breaks were approved. The computer company Lenovo bought out the local IBM personal computer business last year. In return, Morrisville town commissioners held a secret meeting back in August and authorized $1 million in tax breaks for the company, a move that is legal according to state law. The secret meeting was only disclosed after the deal with Lenovo was completed. Now critics are saying that such practices erode the public trust in government. Under state law, the public isn’t allowed to listen in on discussions as to how taxpayer money will be used as incentives.

Sports Headlines

Wilkes County Boys Dominate Swim Meet
It was all Wilkes County over the weekend at the Mountain Valley Conference swim meet. In the individual races, it was Nathan Griffen and his teammate Barry Mitchell finishing 1st and 2nd in the 200 IM, separated by just 22 seconds. It was North Wilkes’ Ryan Wyatt taking first place in both the 50 and 100 meter freestyle events. Chris Bridges from Wilkes Central came in third in the 50 and finished just under four seconds behind Wyatt in the 100 meter. In the 500 meter freestyle, Barry Mitchell from Wilkes Central took 1st place, while his teammate Kyle Ray-Smith followed up in third. Ion the 100 meter backstroke, it was Dane Ricketts of Wilkes Central taking first place. In team competition, it was Wilkes Central taking the 200 medley relay over Forbush and Surry Central, then following that up with a win in the 200 free relay as well. North Wilkes came in behind at a close third. Central walked away with the overall win at the meet, having 149 points to Forbush’s 130. North Wilkes finished fourth with 42. On the girls side of the pool, it was Surry Central taking the overall win. Wilkes Central finished fourth with a score of 43 and North Wilkes came in sixth with a score of 15.

NCAA Scoreboard
Taking a look at some college basketball last night, it was Chattanooga over Davidson 65-59, it took overtime but Elon beat Furman 81-77, Birmingham Southern beat High Point 74-58, NC A&T took care of Morgan State 60-42. UNC Greensboro beat the Citadel 65-46, it was Charleston over Western Carolina 67-59 and Appalachian State knocked off Georgia Southern 90-84 in overtime. Appalachian got 33 points, 5 rebounds and 7 assists from DJ Thompson as the Mountaineers improve to 8-11 on the year.

Bobcats Lose May Possibly For Season
The Bobcats got some bad news on Friday, as rookie forward Sean May went under the knife again. May had arthroscopic surgery on his right knee, the second procedure done on the knee in the last four months. Team physician Dr. Glenn Perry removed some torn cartilage from the leg and believes there shouldn’t be any long term effects. However the surgery usually takes about eight weeks to recover from and the Bobcats don’t want to take any chances, so a date for his return hasn’t been set.

NHL: Montreal vs. Carolina
The Carolina Hurricanes got back to their winning ways Monday night, with a 7-3 win over Montreal. Eric Staal had one goal and two assists to lead Carolina, who improves to 33-11 with the win and maintains a nine game hold on the Southeastern Conference.

NASCAR News & Notes
Tony Stewart is ok. The reigning Nextel Cup champion told reporters that he won’t be slowed down by his crash this week, despite the cast on his right arm. Stewart wrecked while driving a Chili Bowl midget car during a race in Tulsa Oklahoma. He’s still expected to suit up and drive in the Daytona 500. Meanwhile 64-yr-old Morgan Shepherd has landed a ride for the upcoming season. Shepherd will drive the #89 Ford for Victory in Jesus Racing, a group of Christian businessmen looking to get involved in the sport.


News & Sports For January 23rd

Foxx To Visit Wilkes County
5th District Congresswoman Virginia Foxx will be stopping off in Wilkes County this morning, giving local people a chance to voice their concerns. The congresswoman is doing a listening tour throughout the 5th district this week, stopping off in each of the 12 counties. The meeting will go on in the Wilkes Public Library from 9-10am today. Local leaders will be there as well, to discuss issues affecting the 5th district as a whole and also Wilkes County.

Gun Stolen From Local Home
A local chicken farmer got a surprise this week when he walked out to his shed. The gun he had stored there was missing. The incident happened on the Happy Corner Road and after talking with neighbors, a suspect was found in the case. It seems that a neighbor’s son had taken the weapon back before Christmas and kept it hidden all this time in a fort he had built in the woods. The case was turned over to Juvenile Services, however the suspect’s name wasn’t released since he was under 18.

Local Churches Working To Help Hurricane Victims
Two local ministries are asking for help in reaching out to a family in need. Calvary Baptist Church has been working to rebuild a home for a family in Gulfport Mississippi. Now in connection with Rescue America Baptist Missions they want to finish the job. The group is looking for help of any kind, from physical labor to any type of donations. If you or your church can help by volunteering or through financial means, the person to call is Jean Hodges at 262-0385.

Gas Thieves Target Local Man
Instead of hitting a convenience store, gas thieves changed tactics last week and targeted a person instead. A North Wilkesboro man walked out of his house last week to find someone near his vehicle. He used the gun in his hand to fire a shot, which sent the thief running. But the man apparently didn’t leave empty handed. Two gallons of gas and the vehicle’s gas cap were missing. A description of the thief was given to sheriff’s deputies and that investigation continues.

Confusion Over Traffic Signs Leads To Wreck
Confusion over traffic signs led to an accident last week on Hwy 421. A North Wilkesboro man was getting set to turn off into the Lowes Hardware parking lot, when his light turned green. However he didn’t notice that it was simply a green light and not the green arrow giving him the right of way and turned without looking. A Salisbury man was coming from the opposite direction and couldn’t stop in time to avoid a collision. No one was injured but $3000 worth of damage was done.

Hot To Cold Mix Actually Good For Plants

Here in Wilkes winter has been a lot warmer than usual, leaving some people concerned about how the changing weather might affect their fruit crops. Be sure and tune in to the 3WC News today, as Brian will be talking with Bill Hanlin from the Cooperative Extension about what potential issues the warmer climate could pose. Then coming up tomorrow, we’ll be talking with Matt Millin from the Cooperative Extension about how the weather change affects cattle and other animals.

Thieves Hit Millers Creek House For Some Entertainment

How could someone break in and not leave behind any evidence? That’s what a Millers Creek man is wondering today. Late last week he left home to do some errands, returning that night to find over $2000 worth of items had been stolen. Included in the theft was a DVD player, a guitar, over 100 CDsa clock radio and several other items. Despite the theft, there was no sign of a break-in and no damage done to the property. That investigation continues.

Three Cars Involved With Accident On 421
Three cars were totaled after an accident last Thursday on Hwy 421. A Millers Creek woman was turning back onto 421 from the Lowes Hardware parking lot, attempting to cross three lanes of traffic in doing so. She didn’t see a Wilkesboro woman who was in the same lane she was trying to get into. The two vehicles crashed into each other, causing the second car to spin out and hit a third. Heavy damage was done to all three and Wilkes EMS was called out to the scene, however treatment was refused. An estimated $8500 in damage was done.

Blood Drive Later Today
Each day in North Carolina, 1500 pints of blood are needed. With a shelf life of just over one month, blood either has to be used quickly or it gets tossed out. With the local blood supply at critical levels right now, the Wilkes Red Cross has organized several more emergency drives including one today. The drive will be going on from 2:30 til 7pm at Center Baptist Church. Appointments aren’t needed but if you want to plan around your schedule and set up a time to give, the number to call is 838-4563.

State News

UNC Charlotte Aiding In War On Terror
UNC Charlotte is stepping to the frontlines of the war on terror. The university is working in connection with the Georgia Institute of Technology, to design programs that can aid homeland security forces in preventing attacks. The schools are helping to build an artificial analytic reasoning system, which would allow U.S. officials to study massive amounts of information all at once.

Jobs Coming To Alamance County
Good news for people living in Alamance County. More jobs are on the way. International Designer Transitions, which has a plant in Graham announced over the weekend that plans are in the works to add 50 new workers by March. The pay rate will range from $8 to $15 an hour.

Police Searching For Impersonator In Davidson County
Officials in Davidson County are searching today for a man pretending to be a police officer. In Thomasville, police received calls telling of a man in a red Ford F-150 that would pull up behind people and start flashing a blue light. After a few minutes, the man would take off down the road. Such infractions are punishable by at least a $50 fine.

Rockingham County Searching For School Superintendent
The Rockingham County school system is on the hunt for a new leader today. Superintendent Dr. William Capehard announced over the weekend that he was resigning. School officials plan to discuss potential replacements when they meet in February. Capehard said that health concerns were one of the reasons he stepped down, but declined to name the others.

Lost Prop Leads To Bomb Squad
Late last week the bomb squad was called out in Charlotte, after a construction worker found a package near I-85. The package was found near the I-85 South exit ramp and had wires sticking out along with what appeared to be a cell phone stuck to it. Police closed down the area and the bomb squad cut it open, only to find that it was a prop, accidentally left behind by the crew filming Will Ferrell’s NASCAR movie.

Sports Headlines

High School Scoreboard
In high school basketball Friday night, it went down to the wire but the Lady Cardinals of East Surry knocked off West Wilkes 48-45. West Wilkes had a chance to tie but couldn’t make the shot as the team falls to 3-15 on the season while East Surry improves to 13-5. The Lady Eagles of Wilkes Central meanwhile improved to 16-1 with a 63-48 win over Starmount. Amy Will had 19 to lead the Lady Eagles, being helped by Sarah Brown’s 17 and 14 points from Laura Rollins. The Lady Vikings of North Wilkes had some problems in the scoring department, as no one on the team put up more than 8 points. They fell 53-30 to North Surry as the Lady Greyhounds went on a 34-15 run to finish the game. It was Alleghany over the East Wilkes Lady Cardinals 53-50. Kasi Shew had 17 to lead East and Makayla Sales put in 10. On the boys side of the court, it was a rough night for Coach Larry Sears and his West Wilkes Blackhawks. They lost 85-50 to East Surry on senior night in Millers Creek. West drops to 5-12 with the loss. Also in boys action it was North Wilkes falling to North Surry 66-47.

NCAA Scoreboard
Taking a look at the college scene, it was Radford over Coastal Carolina in overtime 70-69, Elon beat Western Carolina 50-48, Winthrop beat High Point 70-67, UNC Asheville took care of VMI 83-65, NC A&T knocked off Coppin State 78-71. In other action, it was Gardner-Webb beating North Florida 71-67, UNC Charlotte getting crushed at home by George Washington 83-69 and UNC Greensboro beat Appalachian State 62-60. DJ Thompson had 22 points for the Mountaineers, who drop to 7-11 with the loss. In the ACC, it was NC State over Wake Forest 92-82. State was led by 26 points and 2 blocks from Cameron Bennerman, while the Deacons got 19 points and 8 rebounds from Eric Williams. A major upset happened on Saturday, as the unranked Georgetown Hoyas beat the Duke Blue Devils 87-84. It was mainly the J.J. Redick show, as the shooting guard put in 41 points, but he was one of only three players on Duke to finish in double figures. Duke falls to 17-1 on the year. And it was the UNC Tarheels surviving a major test against Florida State 81-80. Reyshawn Terry hit two free throws with 23 seconds left to win the game for the Heels, who were led by Wes Miller’s 18 points. Carolina improves to 11-4.

Bobcats Fall To Bucks
The Charlotte Bobcats continue to limp on, as the lineup card gets smaller and smaller. Before the game on Saturday, the team announced leading scorer Gerald Wallace will be out 6 weeks with a sprained MCL and they needed his explosiveness badly. The Bobcats lost to Milwaukee 101-91. Charlotte was led by Primoz Breznec’s 21 points and 11 rebounds, as the team drops to 11-30.

Panthers Knocked Out By Seahawks

The season came to a close on Sunday for the Carolina Panthers, as they lost to Seattle 34-14 in the NFC Championship. Carolina came limping into the game, missing both of their top tailbacks. Then in the first quarter, Carolina lost another back when Nick Goings had to leave with a concussion. The lack of a running game hurt the Panthers, who also had to deal with 3 interceptions tossed by Jake Delhomme. The Panthers will finish the season at 11-5.


News & Sports For January 20th

Help For Heating Bills In Wilkes
People in Wilkes could be suffering from a bit of sticker shock today, after opening up their power bill. With rising prices for natural gas and oil, it can be hard at times to pay for electricity and also have enough money to put food on the table. Gov. Mike Easley has allocated an additional $4 million to be split among the counties and here in Wilkes, people can get help from Social Services. Now you can go and request assistance in paying for your heating bill anytime during the agency’s operating hours from 8:30am til 5pm, but there are some things to know beforehand. First, you can only bring in a heating bill if it’s five days or less away from being disconnected. The reason for this being that the money is given out on a need based approach and so those facing disconnection take first priority. Once again be sure to bring the bill with you when you apply. In addition, Social Services can also help those who use propane heating as long as it doesn’t involve a camper as per state regulations. You can call Social Services and schedule an appointment at 651-7400 or simply stop by their office at 304 College Street in Wilkesboro.

One Car Totaled In River Street Collision
One car was totaled after a wreck on River Street Wednesday afternoon. The incident happened just after 2:30pm, when a light turned green at the intersection with School Street. A North Wilkesboro man was sitting at the light, waiting for it to turn. When it did however, he was a little slow in pulling out. The vehicle behind him, belonging to a Wilkesboro man, only noticed the light changing and didn’t pay attention that the car in front hadn’t moved. The driver of the second vehicle put his foot on the gas, creating a domino effect. Thankfully no one was hurt, however estimated damages to that second car were placed at $3000.

All For Some Free TV
What would you do for some free tv? For thieves in the Lakeview Drive area, the answer was anything it takes. A woman returned home Tuesday night to find that her satellite dish had been stolen, the second time this has happened in the last six months. Nothing else was missing or even touched at the home. There is a suspect in the case and deputies are continuing the investigation.

Recall Of Medical Devices
For the third time this week, 3WC has a recall to tell you about. This time the information affects all diabetes patients out there. Roche Diagnostics has recalled several thousand of its’ ACCU-CHEK Aviva Meters due to an electronic malfunction. The recall involves all of the meters with serial numbers that begin with the number 5250 through 5251, but not including those with a number of 52511 or higher. The malfunction could cause the meter to give a false result when a diabetes patient uses it. As of this week, 8 such malfunctions have been reported. For a replacement or just for more information you can call 1-800-858-8072.

Be Careful Where You Leave Your Phone
It’s never a good idea to leave your phone behind. A North Wilkesboro woman found out why on Tuesday. She had finished eating at a local restaurant and got up to leave. However before she got out of the parking lot, the woman remembered her phone was still inside. When she went back in, no one could recall seeing the phone. Information was turned over to Wilkesboro police and the investigation continues.

Blood Drive Later Today

42 days. That’s how much time blood can be used after it’s donated. Once that time period passes, it has to be thrown out. With the local supply still at critical levels, poor turnouts at the recent drives hasn’t helped the situation. The Wilkes Red Cross is holding another emergency drive today over at the Lutheran Church of the Atonement. That will go on from 2-6:30pm this afternoon and is open to everyone. To set up a time to give, you can call the Red Cross at 838-4563.

Painkillers Stolen From Wilkesboro Home
A Wilkesboro woman let some family members use her car but later that night, found they took more than just the keys. This happened on Monday and after the car was returned, the woman discovered some painkiller pills of hers were missing. An estimated 100 pills of Percocet were taken in the theft. There is a suspect however and that investigation continues.

Scholarship Available For Wilkes High School Seniors
Some good news today for any parent concerned on how they’ll afford tuition costs. USA Today and the Got Milk campaign are partnering together to offer the SAMMY Awards. 25 student athletes across the nation will each be given a $7500 scholarship to the college of their choice, while winning other prizes as well. The winning students will be inducted into the SAMMY Hall of Fame and be featured in a Got Milk ad in USA Today. SAMMY stands for Scholar Athlete Milk Mustache of the Year. To be considered, students have to write a short essay, describing how milk is part of both their lifestyle and training program. The deadline to apply is March 3rd and you can download an entry form by logging on to

Trailer Causes Accident On Winkler Street
One vehicle was totaled and another damaged after a wreck Tuesday afternoon on Winkler Street. A Concord man was pulling onto the highway, dragging along a trailer behind him. A Millers Creek man was coming from the other direction and couldn’t stop in time to avoid a collision, as the trailer was taking up both lanes of the road. That second man’s car was totaled, with estimated damages placed at $3000. Thankfully no one was hurt in the crash.
State News

Charlotte Native Named To NC Supreme Court
Gov. Mike Easley has appointed the next chief justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court. 63-yr-old Charlotte native Sarah Parker will take over when current chief justice Beverly Lake Jr. steps down January 31st. Lake’s term is over due to the fact he turns 72 on January 30th and must retire in accordance with state law. Parker, an associate justice on the court, is the only Democrat and will become only the third female chief justice in North Carolina history.

Jobs Leaving Greensboro
Bad news for people living in the Greensboro area, as the local economy took another hit this week. Officials from Konica Minolta announced plans to close down their facility in Whitsett, which currently employs 258 people. The company said there wasn’t enough of a need for film cameras to keep the facility going. The plant will be shut down permanently in March of 2007.

Major League Baseball A Possibility In Charlotte
The Queen City may have another sports team to call its’ own in the near future. Officials from the Florida Marlins are going to be paying a visit to Charlotte in March, to consider relocating. The Marlins’ lease in Miami is up in 2007 and the franchise plans to leave south Florida due to the fact a deal couldn’t be reached on a baseball only stadium. Currently they play in Pro Player Stadium, the home of the NFL’s Miami Dolphins.

NC Native Named As U.S. Representative
A North Carolina man was named this week as the US representative to the European Union. C. Boyden Gray, a Winston Salem native, was put into the post as a recess appointment by President Bush, this coming after two years of stalled votes by the House and Senate. Gray’s appointment will last until January 2008, where it will expire unless he’s confirmed by the Senate.

Kannapolis Holds Centennial Celebration Tomorrow
The town of Kannapolis is inviting people to come on Saturday and help them celebrate their 100th birthday. The Centennial Winter Fest will start at 12:30 Saturday afternoon with an opening ceremony, as items are put into a time capsule to be buried later on in the day. Also there will be ice skating, a chili supper, winter crafts, snowboarding video games, movies, storytelling and other events throughout the day. All of that will take place at the Kannapolis train station on South Main Street.

Sports Headlines

Boys Basketball Tryouts Taking Place
For any teenage boys wanting to play basketball, there’s a league being put together over in Jonesville. The Yadkin Valley 13U team will be holding tryouts tomorrow for any 13-yr-old looking to suit up and get on the court. Tryouts will be held at the Jonesville Elementary School starting at 1pm. If you want more information the number to call is 838-5339 after 5pm today.

NCAA Scoreboard
Taking a look at some college basketball from last night, it was Winthrop over Liberty 67-47, UNC Wilmington knocked off Towson 78-46, Campbell fell to North Florida 95-84, Coastal Carolina took care of Charleston Southern 63-62. Gardner-Webb beat Jacksonville 72-67, thanks in part to a 26-point performance from Brian Bender. The Running Bulldogs improve to 7-9 with the win. Finally in the ACC, it was Virginia beating the UNC Tarheels 72-68. The Heels only shot 36% from the field and only three players scored in double figures. Tyler Hansborough led UNC with 18 points and 10 rebounds as the team falls to 10-4.

Change Of Plans For UNC Charlotte Senior
UNC Charlotte’s basketball team learned this week that it’ll be one man short for the rest of the season. Senior forward E.J. Drayton will miss the rest of the year due to tendonitis in his knee. Drayton has applied for a medical hardship and doctors expect him to be back with the team in the fall.

Duke & State land Football Commitments
In the college football field, some good news this week for two ACC teams. Both NC State and Duke landed commitments that will help the offensive line. Senior Ryan Wischenfski from Melbourne Florida agreed to play for the Wolfpack. Ryan is 6’3, weighs 315 lbs and can play both the center and guard position. The Duke Blue Devils received a commitment from Marcus Lind, a 6’3 260 lb. lineman from Fort Lauderdale Florida. The high school senior helped lead St. Thomas Aquinas High School to a state 5A championship this past year.

NHL: NY Islanders vs. Carolina
On the ice last night, the Carolina Hurricanes made it nine in a row with a 4-3 win over the New York Islanders. Four different players scored for the Hurricanes, who improved to 32-10 with the win.

Jake Raising The Bar For QBs
With time ticking down til Sunday’s NFC Championship, Carolina Panthers quarterback Jake Delhomme is among some truly great company. Delhomme currently has the highest playoff quarterback rating in NFL history, being ranked at 108.4 right now. That’s enough to pass 49er great Joe Montana, who was ranked at 95.6 and Bart Starr at 108.4. A victory Sunday against Seattle would also give Delhomme the most road playoff wins in NFL history. He’s currently tied with Len Dawson and Roger Staubach. Each has four.


News & Sports For January 19th

Wind Rips Through Wilkes County
The power flickered and trees fell as wind gusts reached over 25 mph in the county yesterday. There were no injuries reported due to the wind, however downed trees caused headaches for local homeowners, who were busy cleaning up their property. Wilkes appears to have got off easy, as over 8000 people were still without power yesterday in Forsyth and Randolph Counties.

Recall Of Children’s Toys
This next bit of news is for all parents of young children. A recall has been ordered by the US Consumer Product Safety Commission of just over 600,000 Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Musical Learning Chairs. Product testing has shown that children can get trapped between the seatback and side table of the chair, which could possibly lead to strangulation. So far across the country there have been three reports of children getting caught in the toy, but thankfully none that were fatal. The Laugh & Learn Musical Learning Chairs were sold from May 2005 until earlier this month and have model numbers of H4609, H47167 through H7173, H8157, H8998 and J0272 through J0275. You can find the model number on the underside of the chair’s seat. Fisher Price is offering a free repair kit that is supposed to solve the problem and you can get one by calling 1-866-552-3914.

All For A Twenty Dollar Bill
A North Wilkesboro man got a surprise Tuesday morning. He was awakened by what he thought were scratching noises, but instead found a man in his kitchen. When the two made eye contact, the thief took off running out the door. Nothing was missing from the house except the man’s wallet and a $20 bill which was inside. The thief had apparently shattered a window in the nearby utility room, then used a stepladder to climb inside. An estimated $180 worth of damage was done and a description of the thief was turned over to deputies. That investigation continues.

Traffic Stop Leads To Drug Bust
Sheriff’s deputies were driving down 421 near Lewis Fork Church Road on Monday when they clocked a driver going 72 in a 55. After pulling him over, a K9 was brought in to check the car for drugs. A smoking pipe was found wrapped up in a sock under the passengers’ seat, with marijuana residue on it. 19-yr-old Kevin Young Marsh was arrested and charged with possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Blood Drive Later Today
1500 pints of blood are used across North Carolina each day, with more being sent down to aid the Gulf Coast. With such a desperate need both here in Wilkes and around the state, a blood drive is going on today at New River Behavioral Healthcare. The drive starts at 10am this morning and lasts until 1pm this afternoon. Just remember before giving you must be at least 17 years old and weigh no less than 110 lbs. No appointments are needed but if you want to set up a time to give, the number to call is 838-4563.

Focus On The Red Cross
With the new year, a lot of changes are taking place here in Wilkes. One of those changes involves the Red Cross, as the local chapter has a new executive director. Scott Glaze is taking over the position and he'll be Brian’s guest today during Focus on the Foothills as they talk about the Red Cross, some of the misconceptions about the organization and what the goals are heading into a new year. That’s today at 1:05pm right after the midday stock report.

Paper Rack Thieves Return To Wilkes
Deputies were called out after another paper rack went missing in North Wilkesboro. The thieves stole the rack from the Little Dipper on Hwy 18 North, grabbing it from the front of the store. That was over the weekend and then earlier this week, the rack had been dropped back off. The investigation into this and several other paper rack thefts continues.

State News

Natural Gas Rates To Drop
Some relief from high heating prices could be coming in the next few weeks. PSNC Energy announced on Tuesday that it will be cutting natural gas rates beginning in February by an average of $20 a month. The move would mean on average, natural gas customers across the state would be paying $133 a month, down from an average of $174 back in November.

Charges Dropped Against UNCG Students
UNC Greensboro announced this week that it’s dropping charges brought against two students for violating the speech code. Allison Jaynes and Robert Sinnott were charged with a violation of campus policy for helping to organize a rally November 16th. The event took place in front of the library instead of a designated “free speech zone”. Campus officials said that the free speech zones were created so that students wouldn’t be blocked from their classes during any type of rally, but they did agree to study the issue and consider changes.

Robinson Returning To Politics
Former 5th District congressional candidate Vernon Robinson is jumping back into politics. Robinson, who is also a former Winston Salem City Councilman, announced that he was entering the 12th Congressional District race against Democrat Mel Watt. He said that a formal announcement would be coming in the near future and explained that he’s needed in Congress because the country is under attack.

East Carolina Facing Problems
There are some issues facing East Carolina University, according to an audit done by the state. The report, which was released this week, found significant problems in the area of financial aid. The current situation places the school at an increased risk of errors and misuse of funds, according to the report. It was recommended that the university re-establish and strengthen control of the financial aid office.

Former Ag Commissioner Given New Position
Shortly after learning that a member of his cabinet was stepping down, Governor Mike Easley filled the post. Department of the Administration Secretary Gwynn Swinson announced this week that he was leaving later this month to take a job at Duke University. His replacement is no stranger to North Carolina politics as former agricultural commissioner Britt Cobb will serve in the position. Cobb’s new duties includes overseeing government operations such as building construction, purchasing and managing contracts and managing state vehicles among other things.

Sports Headlines

High School Scoreboard
Around the high school scene last night, it was East Wilkes over Surry Central 58-55. With a minute left in the game, the Cardinals’ Noah Johnson stepped up and hit a three pointer to win. Johnson finished with 11 points while East was led by Brent Poplin, who had 17. Cody Cook also had 10 points for the Cardinals, who improve to 6-9 on the year. On the girls side of the court, it was East Wilkes getting their second win of the year, knocking off Surry Central 47-42.

NCAA Scoreboard
Taking a look around the college basketball scoreboard last night, it was Radford beating High Point 96-76, Elon took care of Montreat 90-76, in overtime it was SMU over East Carolina 74-70. In the ACC, Duke improved to a perfect 17-0 with a 81-68 win over NC State. J.J. Redick had 28 points and Sheldon Williams added 21 points and 9 rebounds for the Blue Devils, while Cedric Simmons led NC State with 28 points, 9 rebounds and 7 blocks. Meanwhile Wake Forest got back on track with a 86-71 win over Georgia Tech last night. Justin Gray had 25 to lead the Deacons, who improved to 12-5.

Former Wide Receiver Returns To Appalachian
A familiar face is returning to help with Appalachian State’s athletic program. Rick Beasley, who played wide receiver at the school from 1978-1980, was named this week as an associate athletics director. Beasley will be working under athletic director Charlie Cobb to help with fund raising and also lead the financial campaign for new facilities. Beasley still has the school record for most receiving yards in a season at 3124 and most 100 yard receiving games in a career with 16.

Duke Lands Football Commitments
The Duke Blue Devils landed two recruits for next year’s football team this week. Cornerback Chris Rwabukamba, a senior from Windsor Ontario agreed to play for the school. The 5-11 173 lb. Rwabukampa turned down offers from Michigan State and Illinois to come play for the Blue Devils. Also cornerback Abraham Kromah committed to play. The 6-2 ft. 200 lb. Kromah had 11 interceptions over his three years as a starter at Tottenville High in New York

NBA: Charlotte vs. Indiana
The Charlotte Bobcats gave it all they had but came up just short last night against Indiana. They lost 98-92 to the Pacers, despite getting 15 points, 4 assists and 4 rebounds from Raymond Felton. Charlotte drops to 11-28 with Orlando coming to town on Friday.

Several Panthers Limping Into Sunday’s Game
The news wasn’t so good for the Panthers coming off of practice on Wednesday. Fullback Brad Hoover, center Jeff Mitchell, guard Tutan Reyes and defensive tackle Kindal Moorehead are all listed as questionable for the NFC championship. Defensive tackle Jordan Carstens and safety Mike Minter both sat out practice on Wednesday as well, Carstens because he was sick and Minter because of a wrist injury, however both of them are listed as probable for Sunday’s matchup.

Warthogs To See Changes
In minor league baseball, some changes are in store for the Winston Salem Warthogs. Gone is manager Chris Cron, who’s been promoted to Double AA Birmingham. In his place comes new coach Rafael Santana, a former shortstop with the New York Mets. This will be Santana’s first time as a manager after serving as a first base coach for the Chicago White Sox from 2003-2004.


News & Sports For January 18th

Run-In Damaged By Thieves
Thieves hit the Moravian Falls Run-In over the holiday, causing over $1000 in damages. Employees came in on Sunday to find a window had been shattered and beer stolen from inside. Nothing else was taken or even touched inside the store, as it appears the thieves simply shattered the window, grabbed the beer sitting directly behind it and left. Deputies are continuing the investigation.

Car Stolen From Post Office

Be careful where you leave your vehicle. That’s the lesson a Ronda man learned this week. He had parked at the Ronda Post Office, leaving his vehicle behind while joining friends on a trip out of town. He locked the doors and had the keys in his pocket. Later that night when he returned, the vehicle was missing, with so signs of damage or any indication what happened. That investigation is ongoing.

Focus On Red Cross
With the new year, a lot of changes are taking place here in Wilkes. One of those changes involves the Red Cross, as the local chapter has a new executive director. Scott Glaze is taking over the position and he'll be talking about the job this week on Focus. Scott will be Brian’s guest as they talk about the Red Cross, some of the misconceptions about the organization and what the goals are heading into a new year. That’s tomorrow at 1:05pm right after the midday stock report.

Always Lock Up Before You Leave
Always lock up before you leave. A woman visiting friends on Statesville Road found that out the hard way this week. She left her cell phone in her car, but didn’t lock the doors. When she came back out, the phone was gone. That investigation continues.

Gun Stolen From North Wilkesboro Home
Thieves stole a handgun from a North Wilkesboro residence earlier this week. The homeowner told deputies he had left the gun on top of his washer & dryer before leaving the building. When he returned later that day, the gun was missing. There is a suspect in the case and deputies are continuing the investigation.

Recall Of Christmas Lights

If you went out over the last few weeks and did some shopping for next year’s Christmas decorations, it might be a good idea to wait before packing them up. The US Consumer Product Safety Commission issued a recall this week of 861,000 sets of Christmas lights. All of the brands involved were sold at Target and include the “mini light” and the “chasing light” sets. Several of the packages have exposed wires and could lead to a fire next year when hung on the tree. The recall includes all 50-count multi-color, all 100 count blue and 140 count chasing light sets with “Mini Light Set” or “Chasing Light Set” written on the packaging. You can call Target for more information at 1-800-440-0680 between 7am and 6pm Monday through Friday for more information.

Wreck On 421 Totals Two
Two cars were totaled after a wreck on Hwy 421 Monday morning. The incident happened just before 11am when a Garner man was traveling through a green light. A Millers Creek woman pulled out in front of him from another direction and caused the crash. Despite serious damage to both vehicles, no one was hurt in the wreck. Estimated damages were placed at $9000.

Broke In To Steal A Washer
An Elkin man is trying to determine how someone managed to break into a building on his property without leaving any evidence behind. A pressure washer was stolen from the man’s shed, but there was no damage done to the area. There is however a suspect and deputies are continuing the investigation.

Scooter Stolen From Ronda Home
Sheriff’s deputies were called out to a Ronda home to investigate a theft, one that occurred somewhere else. The homeowner had allowed her son to borrow her scooter and he had driven it to a friend’s house. He left it there and went back to get it earlier this week, only to find it missing. Information was turned over to deputies and that investigation continues.

State News

Supreme Court Rejects Annexation Plea
The U.S. Supreme Court won’t get involved with Fayetteville’s annexation battle. The decision was announced on Tuesday as justices refused to examine a court decision here in North Carolina on the subject. At the center of the controversy is the question do cities have the ability to annex outlying areas without their consent? The city of Fayetteville plans to annex 27 square miles of land, bringing over 40,000 people into the tax base. Citizens opposed the move, saying they were concerned about the cost of city sewage services and also increased taxes. A North Carolina court had already ruled in Fayetteville’s favor and the plans will go forward now that the Supreme Court declined to intervene.

NC Troops Find Weapons Cache
A group of North Carolina Marines made a major discovery in Ramadi. In a press release on Monday, the Marine Corps said that troops from the 1st Marine Regiment of Camp Lejeune uncovered a weapons dump while patrolling the area this weekend. Inside were 11 separate caches of weapons including 137 artillery rounds, 56 mortar rounds, 47 rockets, some armor piercing bullets and 1900 pounds of explosives.

Duke & UNC Make Record Books

Students from Duke University and UNC Chapel Hill made history on Monday, getting their names into the Guinness Book of World Records. Starting at 8am Saturday, the students wrapped up a 2 ½ day basketball game at 6pm Monday night. That was enough to get them into the record book for the longest continuous basketball game in history. The final score from the 58-hr-marathon turned out in Duke’s favor, as the Blue Devil students won 3688-3444. Both schools also raised $60,000 during the game for the Hoop Dreams Academy, a charity that helps to improve the lives of kids with potentially life threatening illnesses.

More NC Troops Heading To Middle East
Some more North Carolina soldiers shipped out this week for the Middle East. Just over 200 troops from Seymour Johnson Air Force Base in Goldsboro were deployed on Tuesday, with some heading to Iraq and others to Afghanistan. The group, which includes air crews, pilots and ground crews will be split up and assigned to units where they’re needed as replacements. The deployment is supposed to last four months.

Sports Headlines

NC State Loses Football Recruit
Some more bad news for the NC State football team as they’ve lost a player before he even arrived on campus. High school player Gavin Smith announced this week that he’s changed his mind and would no longer honor his commitment to the Wolfpack. Smith, a defensive end at Wakefield High School, said that he changed his mind after getting more information about the school itself. Before committing, he had just checked into the football program and nothing else. The 6’4 ft. 280 lb. Smith said that he’s considering Virginia, South Carolina or possibly UNC Chapel Hill and expects to make a decision by next week.

Peppers Expects To Play
Some good news for the Carolina Panthers, as defensive end Julius Peppers says that expects to play on Sunday. Peppers had to sit out part of the second half against Chicago with a shoulder injury but he said he should be ready to go when Sunday rolls around. Coach John Fox however was more restrained, saying that the team is just taking it one day at a time.

Charlotte Knights Land New Manager
In baseball, the minor league Charlotte Knights will have a new face in the dugout come spring training. The team introduced new manager Razor Shines this week. The 49-yr-old Shines was the Southern League’s Manager of the Year in 2005, working with the Double A Birmingham Barons. He’ll inherit a team that went 57-87 last year and has only one winning season in the past five years.


News & Sports For January 17th

Speedway One Step Closer To Re-Opening
The dream of hearing engines revving at the North Wilkesboro Speedway came one step closer to reality over the weekend. Save the Speedway, the organization who has been working to buy the track from its’ current owners, announced that they have got a commitment from one investor. One million dollars has been committed toward the purchase, with hopefully more on the way. The organization said in a press release that they hope to find investors willing to commit a total of six million dollars. The hope is that money, combined with what they already have, would be enough to end negotiations and finalize the deal.

3WC Healthwatch: Signs Of Parkinsons
There are some warning signs for Parkinsons that older Americans need to be aware of, as we explain in today’s 3WC Healthwatch. A new study was released this month by Dutch scientists, who discovered a link between certain behavior and Parkinsons. The scientists discovered that adults who begin to have a hard time maintaining their balance, falling or suffering tremors are 71% more likely to get the disease. This comes after a five year study of over 6000 people. 56 of those studied contracted the disease and almost all reported at least one of the behaviors beforehand. Discovering the biological links will not only help a patient get diagnosed earlier, but it could also lead scientists to a cure.

Salvation Army Offering Help
Many families can find themselves in a time of need as it can be hard to pay the bills and also put food on the table. The local Salvation Army is taking applications for their financial assistance program. The program is open to anyone who can demonstrate a need for help paying utility or rent bills. However before going out, please remember that you can only be seen with an appointment, during either Tuesday or Thursday from 1-5pm. Also there is a limited amount of money available to help, given out on a need based approach. The Salvation Army is located in the Wilkes United Way office building, at 910 C Street in Wilkesboro. For more information or to set up an appointment you can call 651-7800.

Newest Protection Against Fraud

January is a busy time for shoppers, working to hit those winter sales and clearance specials. But thieves are also keeping occupied this year, both the usual kind and those who travel on the internet. Credit cards, social security numbers and other personal information are severely at risk. But now, people here in North Carolina can take steps to protect themselves against ID Theft. The Identity Theft Protection Act, a new law that went into effect December 1st will allow you to block access to your credit records, preventing any would be thieves from gaining access and ruining your finances. You will be able to do that thanks to a security freeze. The only problem is that while thieves won't be able to use your credit to purchase things, neither can you. Once the freeze is placed on, no company or business can check up on your credit history until its' lifted. If you do want to fill out an application for a credit freeze or just want more information, you can log on to the state Department of Justice website at

Cold Medicine Now Behind The Counter
Some bad news for anyone suffering from a cold or runny nose. You have to see a pharmacist to solve the problem. Gone are the days of over the counter cold medicine, that you could run in and buy. As of this past Sunday, all medicine containing pseudophedrine or ephedrine can only be found behind the counter at the pharmacy. In order to buy the medication, you must be at least 18 years old and can only purchase limited quantities. In fact, pharmacies have to record who is buying the drugs, just like they would for any prescription medication. The reason for the change is due to the fact that pseudophedrine is used to make meth. Before the year 2000, only 9 cases of meth making were reported in North Carolina. In 2005 alone, there were 328.

DirecTV Offering Refunds
Good news for any DirecTV customers in Wilkes County. You may be eligible for a refund. North Carolina's attorney general has reached a settlement with the satellite company, requiring DirecTV to pay back customers who feel they were lied to. The small print in DirecTV's ads proved to, on occasion, contradict the offer on the same page. Now to avoid a legal battle, DirecTV customers can appy for a refund. You're eligible for a refund if you believe to have been overcharged for anything by the company since 2001. That includes contract terms, installation problems, programming issues or cancellation charges. To apply for a refund, you need to mail a complaint to DirecTV Complaint Program P.O. Box 29079 Glendale California 91209-9079.

Wilkes Cares Needs Help
As we head into the new year, many families face a struggle to put food on the table. Wilkes Cares has been there to help, providing food and also clothes to needy families here in the county. But now Wilkes Cares is facing a problem of their own, as their shelves are almost empty of food and they don't have enough clothes to give out. One of the major needs is for childrens' coats, especially with winter weather constantly in the forecast. If you have any children's clothes or extra food to donate, you can drop it by to Wilkes Cares. They're located on the Elkin Hwy in North Wilkesboro. You can also call at 838-4900.

State News

Serial Arsonist A Concern In Stokes
Officials in Stokes County are concerned they possibly could have a serial arsonist on their hands. Over the past four months, a series of suspicious fires have ignited in the county, all targeting abandoned buildings close to the road. Officials are still investigating and believe that the cases could be linked to several more fires in Forsyth County.

Charter Schools Want Lottery Dollars
North Carolina needs to fund charter schools just like they do public ones. That was the claim on Monday as representatives from 20 different charter schools launched their campaign. The schools are requesting for Governor Easley to include them in as a piece of the pie when lottery money is handed out next fall for education. Charter school officials said they believe their students deserve the money just as much as those who attend public school, as both are funded by the state. The only differences are that charter schools are privately operated and don’t have to follow all the rules which govern other so called secondary schools. An estimated $350 million is expected to divided up among the state’s public schools

Help On The Way To The Classroom
Some good news for North Carolina public schools. Some more teachers could soon be on the way. The State Board of Community Colleges has assembled a new program it hopes will recruit more people to teach. All 56 colleges will be allowed to offer lateral entry programs. That would allow qualified people to begin teaching, while also working on getting their license. The board will meet this Friday to consider the program and possibly vote on it.

Universities Struggling To Meet Healthcare Need
More and more, a new field is rising to the top of the list of needed workers in North Carolina. Universities across the state are asking for more money and teachers to help in training nurses. As the baby boomer generation gets older, nurses are needed both in hospitals and home healthcare situations. Unfortunately at the same time, a lot of nurses in the field are getting ready to retire. Currently there are about 650 nurses in programs, while at least 1300 are needed to keep up.

Water Cut Off In Madison
People in Rockingham County had some problems on Monday, after a water main broke. It’s unknown what caused the main to break, however 50 homes were without water throughout the day as crews worked to repair the damage.

FBI Investigating Greensboro Police
Greensboro’s police department is under investigation by the FBI, according to Bureau officials. Agents are checking into claims of civil rights violations, including rumors of a covert operations unit in the department that racially profiled their own officers. This comes less than a week after police chief David Wray resigned from the force, under rumors of corruption.

Sports Headlines

NCAA Scoreboard
Taking a look at the college scoreboard last night, it was NC A&T over Bethune Cookman 69-67. Coastal Carolina knocked off UNC Asheville 84-72, Western Carolina took care of UNC Greensboro 87-76. Winthrop beat Charleston Southern 79-61 and Wofford beat the Citadel 67-52. Finally it was Chattanooga all over Appalachian State 73-57. The Mountaineers got 20 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists and 5 steals from DJ Thompson but they just couldn’t seal the deal. With the loss, Appalachian drops to 7-10.

Duke Lands Recruits For 2008
The Duke basketball team continues to reload, this time stocking up for 2008. Two of the county’s best high school juniors agreed to play for the school this week. Nolan Smith from Oak Hill Academy in Virginia and Taylor King from Mater Dei High School in California both committed. Smith is a 6-3 guard regarded as the 16th best in the junior class, known for his great defense and his 62% shooting percentage. Able to play either point guard or shooting, he’s the son of former NBA player Derek Smith. Meanwhile the 6-7 King averages 26 points a game and is being compared to former Duke star Shane Battier.

New Orleans vs. Charlotte
In the NBA, injuries continue to plague the Charlotte Bobcats. Playing most of the game without any center or power forward, Charlotte lost to New Orleans 107-92. Gerald Wallace led Charlotte with 19 points, 7 rebounds and 6 blocks as the team drops to 11-27.

Foster Out For Season
It’s a case of bad news, good news for the Carolina Panthers, as they get set for Sunday’s game in Seattle. The good news is they’re in the NFC championship game for the second time in three years. The bad news is they’ll have to play without starting tailback Deshaun Foster, whose season is over. Foster broke his ankle during the third quarter of the game against Chicago. Taking his place on Sunday will be Nick Goings, who has been rotating out with Foster over the last two weeks. Behind Goings will be Rod Smart and Jamal Robertson for Sunday’s game, which starts at 6:30pm.

NASCAR Reconsiders Car Of The Future
The car of the future may not be arriving for a while. NASCAR had plans to unveil its’ new designs this fall at the Talladega race, but those ideas have hit a snag. The car has yet to roll off the assembly line, according to auto makers, because NASCAR isn’t providing the needed information regarding the vehicle’s body configuration. Several prototypes are going through testing, but it looks like 2007 will be here before the new cars will hit the track in force.


News & Sports For January 16th

Wilkes County Celebrates Martin Luther King Birthday
People around the county are gathering together to pay tribute to a great American today. January 15th is the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and here in Wilkes a celebration will be going on at the old Lincoln Heights school. Stephen McCloud, a deacon from Galilee Missionary Baptist Church in Winston Salem, will be speaking at the event, which begins at 7pm tonight. Dr. King was only 39 years old when he was gunned down on April 4th 1968 in Memphis Tennessee.

Wilkes Farmers Will See Tax Breaks In New Year
2006 brings some good news for Wilkes County farmers. There is a tax break coming for all farmers here in North Carolina on supplies and farm equipment. Certain items are now exempt from all sales and use tax, including grain, feed or soybean storage equipment. Also exempt are all farm machinery parts, attachments, lubricants and repair parts. In addition, farmers won't have to pay sales tax on any containers bought to use in planting, cultivating, harvesting, packaging or transporting farm products. Under the previous law, those products all had a tax assessed of 1%. In order to have proof on hand that they qualify, farmers need to fill out Form E-595E, known as the Streamlined Sales Tax Agreement Certificate of Exemption. The forms are available online at or you can also call and get it mailed to you at (877) 252-3052.

News From WCC Trustees Meeting
The trustees at Wilkes Community College met last Thursday at the John A Walker Center to discuss some ongoing projects. Construction is progressing on the new science and technology building, with 34% of the work completed. The college has also been picked to serve as one of 15 pilot sites for the state’s new Career Readiness Certificate. The certificate is designed to serve as verification for potential employers that a person has developed the basic skills of reading, writing and processing information. People can go to the local JobLink center and test their skills, then get help in setting up any additional training they may need to qualify.

Search Continues For Missing Girl
Sheriff’s deputies are continuing the search today for a missing Ferguson girl. Tiffany Nicole Griffith was last seen January 9th at the Wilkesboro Sonic. She disappeared after being fired from her job at the Sonic and hasn’t been seen or heard from since. Tiffany is a 18 year old white girl, about 5’3ft and weighing 138 lbs with hazel eyes and brown hair. If anyone has information regarding Tiffany’s whereabouts, please call the Wilkes Sheriff’s Department at 903-7600.

Wreck Totals Two On 421
Two cars were totaled after an accident on Hwy 421 last week. A Millers Creek woman was merging back onto 421 from a side street, but didn’t notice the oncoming traffic. She pulled out right in front of a Wilkesboro man who wasn’t able to stop in time to avoid a wreck. No one was injured however estimated damages were placed at just under $11,000.

Fish Recall
Before you sit down and eat that fish for supper tonight, you might want to take a look at where it’s been. Whole Foods Market is issuing a recall of all Whole Catch Lemon Pepper Garlic Hot Smoked Trout. Packages of the trout were found to be contaminated with listeria monocytogenes, a bacteria that can prove deadly to young children or the elderly. North Carolina is one of 11 different states where the food was shipped to stores. No reported cases of sickness have been reported yet, but testing by the Florida Department of Agriculture earlier this month uncovered the bacteria. An investigation continues as to how the bacteria got inside the food, but anyone who purchased the Whole Foods Smoked Trout can return it to the store for a full refund. The product has since been pulled from shelves and a number has been set up for anyone with questions. You can call 1-512-542-0656. Once again the affected packages are all “Whole Catch Lemon Pepper Garlic Hot Smoked Trout” and the UPC code on the affected boxes is 9948241183

Health Department Offering Car Seat Help
85% of child safety seats across Wilkes County were not installed correctly, according to the local SafeKids organization. While this is slightly lower than the national average, it’s still high enough for concern. However if you’re still trying to figure out what the right way to install one is, you don’t have to wait until the next safety check. The Wilkes Health Department is partnering with SafeKids to help show parents the right way to install the seats. You can contact the Health Department and make an appointment anytime during the week by calling Jean Edwards at 651-7478.

Check Road Conditions Before Leaving
With rain and wind in the forecast, it's important to know what road conditions are like across the county. For people in Wilkes, that can be accessed now on the internet by visiting the state DOT webpage at You can also check out information on proposed road projects and how the weather might affect both their schedule and your traffic conditions at There you will find information on public meetings, schedules, and area maps.

State News

New Jobs For Textile Workers
Some good news today for unemployed textile workers in the Tarboro area. They may be going back to work. Glenoit Corporation closed down their operation in the area last year, but now a new company has bought out the plant and plans to reopen. Tarboro Textiles, a local business created by former Glenoit workers, will reopen the plant in the next month and hopes to have 140 people on the payroll by March.

Answers Coming Regarding White Sludge
Officials finally have some answers regarding the white substance covering a Raleigh creek. Tests have determined it’s a type of dead algae, mixed in with deposits of calcium. The calcium is used by a nearby water treatment plant to remove chorine. It’s not toxic, however the calcium will burn exposed skin it comes into contact with. It’s still unknown how exactly the calcium is leaking out, but officials are continuing the testing, to make sure there’s no risk to the population.

Rockingham Gets Shot In The Arm
Some good news today for people in Rockingham County. Plans are moving forward to build a $10 million equestrian center in Reidsville. The center would be used for regional horse shows and current projections believe it could generate up to $15 million a year in revenues for the county. When plans are finalized the center will be just off US 29 on a 152 acre spread.

Sports Headlines

High School Scoreboard
Around the high school scene, it was the Lady Cardinals of East losing to Mount Airy 37-23 in a game of missed free throws and turnovers. The Lady Cardinals drop to 1-11 with the loss. It was Ashe County over the North Wilkes Lady Vikings 63-40. Blake Shumate had 16 points as the only player in double figures for the Lady Vikings, who drop to 4-8 with the loss. The West Wilkes Lady Blackhawks gave it their best shot but weren’t to knock off Bishop McGuiness, losing 72-29. Lauren Overton led West with 14 points. Meanwhile on the boys side of the court, it was Mount Airy knocking off the East Wilkes Cardinals 68-57 in a game that was a lot closer than the final score. East led for most of the second half, being led by 17 points from Matt Garris and Brent Poplin, but it just wasn’t enough to overcome the Granite Bears’ offense, as East drops to 5-8 on the season. North Wilkes lost to Ashe County 76-54 despite 16 points and 7 rebounds from Aaron Church. The Vikings fall to 3-12 with the loss. And it was West Wilkes losing to Bishop McGuiness 66-49 despite 15 points from Chad Lankford.

NCAA Scoreboard
Taking a look at some college basketball over the weekend, it was Maryland over Wake Forest 90-86. Justin Gray had a career night, scoring 38 for the Deacons but it wasn’t enough as Wake drops to 11-5. Also it was Florida Atlantic over Gardner-Webb 72-51. The loss drops the Bulldogs to 6-9. It was Birmingham Southern over Coastal Carolina 77-64, Charleston Southern over UNC Asheville 70-68, Xavier knocked off UNC Charlotte 78-65, Elon beat UNC Greensboro 62-56, it took triple overtime but Hofstra beat UNC Wilmington 92-87. It was Appalachian State over Montreat 105-57. Appalachian was led by D.J. Thompson’s 18 points and 7 assists, as the Mountaineers improve to 7-9. NC State beat Georgia Tech 87-78 thanks to a balanced scoring effort led by Cameron Bannerman’s 16 points. It was Miami over the UNC Tarheels 81-70. Carolina got 25 points from freshman Tyler Hansborough as they drop to 10-3. Finally it was Duke over Clemson 87-77. J.J. Redick had 34 points for the Blue Devils, who stay undefeated at 16-0.

Bobcats Lose To Detroit
The Charlotte Bobcats gave it all they had but came up short Saturday, in a 114-91 loss to Detroit. Primoz Breznec had 18 to lead Charlotte, as the team drops to 11-26 on the season. They’ll take on New Orleans later today.

Panthers Advance To Championship
In the NFL last night, the Carolina Panthers came one step closer to the Super Bowl with a 29-21 victory over the Chicago Bears. The Panthers got 218 yards and 2 touchdowns from Steve Smith, while quarterback Jake Delhomme tossed for 319 yards and 3 touchdowns on the day. Next the team will head up to Seattle to take on the Seahawks in the NFC championship.

Hurricanes Keep Winning Streak Going
In the NHL, it was the Carolina Hurricanes over the St. Louis Blues 4-2. Eric Staal had 3 goals and an assist for Carolina, who improve to 30-10 with the win.


News & Sports For January 13th

Wilkes Soldier Now Charged With Premeditation
A Wilkes County soldier was officially charged with premeditated murder as his preliminary hearing began this week. 19-yr-old Brandon Bare faces two counts of indecent acts and one count of premeditated murder in the death of his wife, 18-yr-old Nabila Bare last July. Mrs. Bare was stabbed over 70 different times at the couple’s home in Tacoma, mostly being targeted in the head and neck. The charge of indecent acts comes due to Bare’s mutilation afterward of his wife’s remains. Bare served with the 1st Brigade, 25th Infantry Division in Iraq and was home on leave when the murder happened, recovering from injuries sustained in battle. Bare’s case manager at Madigan Army Medical Center testified this week. Michael Collins said that Brandon had problems controlling his anger and didn’t approve of his wife going out and partying. Collins had helped Bare get enrolled into a therapy program, to help in dealing with his anger and also the stress of combat. Bare’s attorney denied the premeditation charge, saying that the murder was an act of rage with no evidence to prove his client had in fact planned it in advance.

Tip Leads To Drug Bust On Martin Road
Sheriff’s deputies responded to a tip on Martin Road this week and ended up busting another drug dealer. After obtaining a search warrant, deputies went inside and discovered 387 grams of marijuana and 151 grams of cocaine, hidden in bedroom dressers, under the sink and in several other bags throughout the home. Also inside a locked closet deputies uncovered a marijuana growing operation. $12,088 in cash was seized, along with a 1999 Dodge Durango, two handguns and several computers. 32-yr-old Shalijamon Japhet Gilchrist and 28-yr-old Warren Anthony Brown were both charged with maintaining a dwelling for the sale of drugs, manufacturing & trafficking cocaine, manufacturing marijuana, possession of drugs with intent to sell and distribute, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of a firearm by a felon.

Wreck On Main Street In Wilkesboro Totals Two
The wet road played a part in an accident Wednesday afternoon. The incident happened around 1:30pm on East Main Street, as a North Wilkesboro man was traveling down the highway. The vehicle in front of him was getting ready to make a right turn and had slowed down, but due to the wet pavement he couldn’t stop in time to avoid the wreck. No one was injured, but both vehicles were totaled as an estimated $6500 worth of damage was done.

Children In Wilkes Part III: School Situations
Some children here in Wilkes are struggling in school, according to a study by North Carolina's Child Advocacy Institute. The report finds that among other things, a language barrier seems to be part of the problem. 631 students here in Wilkes have a hard time speaking English. Some developmental and physical problems are also to blame, with 1175 students having at least one or more disabilities. However there are encouraging signs as well. Out of the students who speak foreign languages at home, 837 of them are able to converse in and understand English. Also out of the entire student population, only 878 have dropped out. The report finds that by supplying additional support, such as tutors to help overcome the disability and language barriers, will help the county to improve.

Graveyard Vandals Hit Millers Creek Church
Sheriff’s deputies were called out to the Wesley Outreach Center in Millers Creek on Wednesday, after church officials discovered someone had been visiting the graveyard. Five gravestones had been colored with spray paint, but no messages had been left and that was the extent of the damage. Estimated damages were placed at $200 and that investigation continues.

They Took Everything But The Kitchen Sink
A Wilkesboro woman called sheriff’s deputies after returning to her property on the Ottie Allen Road this week. The woman had let some people into the house recently as a relative had lived there and they wanted to recover a few items. Instead she came by to find over a thousand dollars worth of items stolen. Pictures had been taken, towels, bowls, tools and several other things. Names and addresses of the suspects were given to sheriff’s deputies and the investigation is ongoing.

Old Wilkes Takes People Back In Time
Coming up tomorrow, the Wilkes Heritage Museum invites people to go back in time for a “Civil War Afternoon”. The event runs from 1-4pm and will feature re-enactments, an exhibit on Confederate currency, music and a book signing by “The Secret of War” author Terrell Garren. Garren’s book deals with actual events that occurred during and just after the Civil War here in Western North Carolina. There is however a fee to attend, as people must pay regular admission price in order to get in. In addition to the Civil War events, that fee will also include tours of the Old Wilkes Jail and Robert Cleveland Log Home. For more information you can call Old Wilkes at 667-3171.

Red Cross Looking For Fundraising Help
We’ve talked a lot here on the news about the need for blood in Wilkes County. But thanks to the recent hurricanes and the cost of relocating some survivors, the local Red Cross needs help of a different kind as well. The local chapter continues to sell cookbooks, to help raise the money it needs to cover costs of daily operations, in addition to the funds used to help victims of the recent hurricanes. The cost of a cookbook is $10 and it contains recipes from chapter members along with their family and friends. For more information or to purchase one, you can call the Red Cross at 838-4563.

State News

Money Offered For Information
A reward is being offered today by Winston Salem property owners for information leading to the arrest of a graffiti artist. $510 has been put up by Diversified Realty, after the word “kudzu” kept appearing on their buildings in the downtown area. The money will be handed out to anyone who can give the person’s name and address. To give out information the number is 336-391-2129.

Company Knew Beforehand About Pet Food

Over the last month we’ve kept you informed about a pet food recall going on with Diamond Foods. It appears now that the company knew about the contaminated dog food back in September, three months before it went public with the information. Diamond revealed that information during a conference this week, saying that each week in September one or two truckloads of corn was coming in infected with aflatoxin. Most of the loads were rejected but some got through the screening at Diamond’s South Carolina plant and were turned into dog food. Aflatoxin is a natural chemical found in fungus that can get into corn and then in pets once it’s converted to food. In animals the chemical causes liver damage and eventually death. The Agricultural Departments of North & South Carolina, along with the FDA are investigating the facility.

Table For Two In The Non Furry Section
People going out to the North Carolina zoo will have one less place to eat at. Junction Restaurant has been temporarily shut down while officials remove some patrons that don’t want to leave. A family of raccoons have taken up residence in the ceiling of the building, and while it’s not believed they got into the food prep area, the zoo wanted to take precautions.

Jobs Coming To Research Triangle Park
Good news for people living in the Durham area. More jobs are on the way for Research Triangle Park. Stiefel Research Institute is planning to bring in 200 new jobs over the next five years. The company, which helps to develop and manufacture skin care products, will pay an average salary of $71,750. The move comes thanks to tax breaks from North Carolina’s Job Development Incentive Grant worth $3 million. Those incentives only kick in however if the jobs are created and kept for at least 9 years.

North Carolina Firm At Work On Grizzly
A North Carolina security firm is at work designing a new type of vehicle to protect troops in combat situations. This 14-person vehicle, called the Grizzly, will be able to survive both bullets and bombs through the use of unique angles and blast shielding. Once finished, the Grizzly would help to take away one advantage of insurgents, making the roadside bombs virtually useless. Blackwater USA said that they hope to have the vehicle ready for combat by April.

Sports Headlines

High School Basketball
Coming up later tonight, three of the county teams are in action. West Wilkes goes on the road against Bishop McGuiness, while North Wilkes heads into Husky Country to take on Ashe County. 3WC will be over at East Wilkes, to broadcast the Cardinals’ game against Mt. Airy. The McDonald’s pregame show starts at 7pm and we’ll turn things over to Ken and Keith for the play by play at 7:15.

NCAA Scoreboard
Taking a look at last night’s college basketball scoreboard, two NC teams in action. It was High Point over Virginia Military 100-90. The win brings High Point to 10-4 on the season, good enough for second in the Big South conference. Also it was UNC Wilmington beating Drexel 66-60. The win takes Wilmington to 12-5.

Rush Out For A Month
In the NBA, the news isn’t good for Charlotte Bobcats shooting guard Kareem Rush. Rush injured the index finger on his left hand back in December and now it appears he’ll be out at least another month. Doctors now say that Rush may have torn a tendon the first time he injured it and further damaged the finger by trying to keep playing.

Panthers News & Notes

Panthers safety Marlon McCree’s wallet is a little lighter today, after he was fined by the NFL. A $5000 fine was handed down due to what the league called excessive celebrating after one of his interceptions last Sunday. In other news, four members of the team will be limping into Sunday’s game against Chicago. Fullback Brad Hoover re-injured his ankle last week, offensive guard Tutan Reyes sprained his toe and linebacker Brandon Short continues to have problems with his knee. The news means expanded roles for rookie linebacker Thomas Davis and halfback Nick Goings.

Former Panther Going Into Hall Of Fame

In other NFL news, a former member of the Carolina Panthers made the list of 15 finalists for the Hall of Fame. Voters put Reggie White into this year’s class. The Minister of Defense joins a group that includes Cowboys quarterback Troy Aikman and receiver Michael Irvin, along with Redskins great Art Monk. The inductees will be announced the day before the Super Bowl, on February 4th.

NASCAR News & Notes
In NASCAR this week, the first round of testing wrapped up on Wednesday, as drivers prepare for the Daytona 500. Jeff Gordon had the fastest car out on the track, finishing with a speed of 189. 298. Jimmie Johnson was second, just a few ticks off at 189,195 and Matt Kenseth concluded the top three with a speed of 189.024. In other NASCAR news, some changes are in the works for Las Vegas Speedway. The banking will be increased from 12 to 21 degrees in all of the turns. NASCAR drivers won’t have to worry about the changes for the first part of the season, as construction won’t start until after the March 12th race. Everything is expected to be finished in time for the Truck Series to run on the new track September 23rd.


News & Sports For January 12th

Children In Wilkes Part II: Choices
Just over 7% of Wilkes County’s children are living in poverty, according to a study done by North Carolina’s Child Advocacy Institute. In part two of our series examining the study’s impact on local kids, we take a look at the family situation here in Wilkes. A new type of family structure is popping up, not just here in Wilkes but around the U.S. Grandparents are raising their grandkids. Here in Wilkes alone, 1084 children are living with their grandparents full time. This is due in some cases to their parents being in jail or in others they’ve simply abandoned the children and left. Also a lot of children here in the county are living in single parent homes, 6733 of them according to the study. How has this affected the kids? We’ll take a look at the numbers tomorrow in the final part of our series.

Local Woman Falls Victim To ID Theft
A local woman went to Duke Power, to get power hooked up to her house. What she found however, was that someone was already using her name to get power. In addition, the woman checked her bank account and found there was an additional purchase on it, to the tune of $170. Apparently back in December, she had left her wallet and the debit card at Food Lion in Millers Creek and the card was missing when she got back the wallet. Information was turned over to sheriff’s deputies and that investigation is ongoing.

Dog Food Recall Still A Concern
Pet owners here in Wilkes and across the state are being asked to pay close attention to a recall going on. It’s been almost a month since Diamond Pet Food issued a recall of certain brands, but already 76 dogs have been killed after eating the food. Included in the recall are all brands that were produced at the company's Gaston South Carolina facility, due to a toxic chemical that was discovered. The chemical aflatoxin, which is found in corn that's been infected with a certain type of fungus, was located in several cans of the food. It can make a pet sluggish and even in some cases cause sudden death. North Carolina's Agricultural Commissioner Steve Troxler is asking pet owners to get in touch with their local vet immediately if their pet has been weak, sluggish or just generally out of sorts. The brands involved are:
All types of Diamond Dog and Puppy Food
All types of Country Value Dog and Puppy Food
All types of Professional Dog, Puppy and Cat Food
You can determine if your brand is one of those under recall by checking to see if it has a Gaston facility production code. The South Carolina facility's codes have a capital G as either the 11th or 12th letter. Also those brands all have a sell by date of anywhere from March 1-June 1st 2007.

Video Game Thief Hits North Wilkesboro Home
A North Wilkesboro man got a surprise when he returned home on Tuesday. The door to his house was unlocked and some visitors had stopped by. Taken from inside was an N64 game system, several games and a CD radio. It’s unclear how the thieves got inside, as there was no sign of a break-in and no damage done to the door itself. That investigation continues.

Focus On Foxx
It’s a time of controversy in our nation’s capital. Questions have been raised about the president’s wiretapping plans, which some have called unconstitutional. While Democratic and Republican leaders have come out saying that they knew nothing about the program, that’s not exactly true, according to 5th District Congresswoman Virginia Foxx explains. The congresswoman will be Brian’s guest later today during Focus on the Foothills, as they’ll be talking about the wiretap controversy, going over what exactly Congress was told about the subject. Also gas prices and illegal immigration will be part of the conversation, coming up today at 1:05pm right after the midday stock report.

Hungry Thieves Raid Local Man’s Popcorn
Always keep your house locked. A North Wilkesboro woman learned why that’s a good idea this week. She returned home to find that thieves had been inside. No money or any other valuables were taken, in fact the only thing missing was a Christmas popcorn tin. There are suspects in the case, as some people were seen leaving the house. That investigation is ongoing.

Blood Drive Later Today
The blood supply continues to stay at extremely critical levels, as turnouts have been less than expected. Type O negative, Type A negative and Type B negative are all under a two day supply and all blood types are desperately needed. The American Red Cross has put together an emergency drive today over at Wileks Central High School, that will last from 8:30am til 2pm. No appointments are needed, but if you want to avoid the crowd as kids change classes, you can call 838-4563. And as always you must be at least 17 years old and weigh no less than 110 lbs to give.

All The Music That’s Fit To Steal
A North Wilkesboro woman called sheriff’s deputies after discovering her missing mandolin at a local pawn shop. Apparently the thief had come in and pawned the instrument for food. The suspect’s name and information were turned over to sheriff’s deputies, but he agreed to pay for the mandolin and return it, so no charges were filed. It’s still unclear exactly how the thief got inside the home on Little Mountain Church Road to steal the instrument in the first place.

Regional News

Highway 52 In Mt Airy Shut Down
Cleanup crews worked throughout the night and on into this morning in Mt. Airy, as they took care of a propane leak. An estimated 30,000 gallons of propane leaked out yesterday afternoon from Carolane Propane and caused Highway 52 to be completely shut down. It's unclear how the propane leaked, but there were no injures to people at Carolane and no evacuations were ordered.

State News

NC Universities Violate The Constitution
North Carolina’s public universities are under attack today, for violating the constitution. The Pope Center For Higher Education, a conservative think tank, issued the accusations in a report released on Tuesday. The report said that campus speech codes are the problem, as they restrict what people can say. 13 of the state’s 16 public universities have policies that restrict free speech, including Appalachian State. ASU was cited for not allowing abusive language, insults or taunts. In addition, Fayetteville State was reprimanded for not allowing vulgar language, UNC Chapel Hill for not allowing sexually explicit jokes. The Pope Center said that such rules open up the universities for a lawsuit, one they would lose.

Troops To Be Welcomed Home Today
Some troops from Iraq will be welcomed home today. This afternoon, B Company of the 1-126th Aviation Regiment will be greeted by friends and family during a ceremony in Salisbury. The event starts at 3pm at Catawba College. The soldiers have served a year and three months in Iraq, logging 4400 flight hours in combat.

Tobacco Farmers Criticize Buyout
Now that the first payments have been sent out, some tobacco farmers in North Carolina are having second thoughts about the federal buyout plan. Some growers feel that they’ve been shortchanged as much as $60,000 and are talking to lawyers about suing the government. An estimated 181,000 producers and 380,000 tobacco quota holders are taking part in the plan, which forks out $951 million each year for the next ten years. As a result, companies can buy tobacco at cheaper prices.

Officials Raid NC State Building
SBI officials raided a building on the NC State campus yesterday. The search was prompted by an anonymous tip over the internet to the National Center for Missing Children. The SBI wouldn’t release any details, but did say that no one at the university is involved in the investigation.

NC Shell Fishing Taking A Hit
Pollution is slowly strangling North Carolina’s shell fishing business. That announcement came on Wednesday, as parts of the state’s economy continues to struggle. An estimated 2800 acres of shell fishing land has been closed down on the Newport River, thanks to contamination from pollution. State officials are blaming people who live on the waterfront, who they believe are dumping materials into the water for use as their own personal dump.

Sports Headlines

High School Basketball
Taking a look at high school basketball from last night, it was Mount Airy over North Wilkes 84-52. Despite playing at home, things didn’t exactly go too well for the North Wilkes Vikings, who gave up 45 points in the second half alone. Aaron Church led North Wilkes, the only Viking to score in double figures. With the loss, the team drops to 3-11. Meanwhile up the road in Millers Creek, it was Ashe County over West Wilkes 72-49. Micah Dancy had 14 points to lead the Blackhawks and Kurtis Lankford added 11, but it wasn’t enough as the Huskies used a 42 point second half to seal the deal. West drops to 5-10 with the loss. On the girls side of the court, it was Ashe County over West 59-50. The Lady Blackhawks got a great performance from Lauren Overton, who had 22 points, but she was about it as Meredith Wingler was the only other West Wilkes player to score in double figures, finishing with 11. West falls to 3-12 with the loss.

NCAA Scoreboard
Around the college basketball scoreboard last night, it was Winthrop over UNC Asheville 74-49, UNC Greensboro took care of Montreat 96-68, UNC Charlotte had no problems against LaSalle as the 49ers won 64-52. East Carolina lost to Memphis 77-67, Wake Forest was upset by Clemson 74-73. The Deacons got 27 from Justin Gray but it wasn’t enough as they fall to 11-4. And Duke survived another test as they took care of Maryland 76-52. J.J. Redick had 27 points to lead the Blue Devils, while Sheldon Williams added 19 points, 11 rebounds and 10 blocks. Duke stays undefeated at 15-0 with the win.

NC State Lands More Football Recruits
Some good news for NC State’s football team. Even as the Wolfpack keep losing players to the draft, there are some incoming freshmen looking to fill their shoes. High school senior Jevon Walker is the latest to sign on with the Wolfpack. As a senior at South Dade High in Florida, Walker was a safety, defensive end and also a linebacker. He racked up 104 tackles, seven sacks and 3 interceptions. In addition, the 5-11 180 lb. Walker runs a 40-yd-dash time of 4.4 seconds and turned down offers from Colorado State, Mississippi and Eastern Michigan to come to NC State.

Moore Named Coach Of The Year
If winning a national title wasn’t enough, Appalachian State football coach Jerry Moore was honored again this week. The American Football Coaches Association named Moore the Division I-AA Coach Of The Year. With 14 victories under his belt, Moore has the most wins in Southern Conference history. He’s also been invited to serve as an assistant coach in the 2006 Hula Bowl, a college version of the NFL’s Pro Bowl all star game.

NBA: Charlotte vs. Toronto
It was Toronto over a wounded Charlotte Bobcats team 95-86. Charlotte was missing five players, including rookie Sean May and last season’s rookie of the year Emeka Okafor, both out with injuries. Gerald Wallace led the Bobcats with 15 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 steals, but it just wasn’t enough. The team drops to 11-24, with Milwaukee coming to town on Friday.

NASCAR Rookie Walking Wounded
One NASCAR driver hopes to be healed in time for the Daytona 500. Rookie David Stremme strained ligaments in his leg while blowing away leaves in the yard. Because of the injury, Stremme will have to wear a brace on his foot and might not be able to climb into his #39 Dodge for Chip Ganassi Racing. No replacement has been named if Stremme can’t suit up.