Wednesday, December 31, 2014

JFP New Year's Eve Guide.

These guys compile it better than I can.  Check out the Jackson Free Press's News Year's Eve Guide if you are looking to ring in the new year in style.  They have options for everyone, young and old.

Free Rides Home Tonight!

Mississippi Hospitality & Restaurant and AMR ambulance service are providing free rides home this evening.  I am thankful for this service and hope everyone stays safe this New Year's Eve!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

PSC Commissioner Posey Not Running for Reelection

Central District Mississippi Public Service Commissioner, Lynn Posey, will not seek reelection in 2015.  The Central District serves, in part, Rankin County.  State Representative Cecil Brown, a Democrat from Jackson, previously announced he was running for the position.  However, the Clarion Ledger reported two Reservoir area resident are considering a run as Republicans: Lee Yancey, a former State Senator for the Reservoir area, and Jason Cochran, son of former Public Service Commissioner, Neilson Cochran.  

2015 is shaping up to be a busy year for Reservoir politics.

New Year's Fun

Here are some of your local options:

Table 100 offers a pre-set, three course menu with wine pairings.  It's a surf and turf main course with "frozen local honey and cold drip coffee souffle".   

Bonny Blair's appears more lively.  From their Facebook page:  "The end of the year is here and we want to ring in the new year with you!  We have an awesome night planned for you. Come watch the State game on our big screen tv's, enjoy a variety of bottled and draft beers, $2.50 stadium cup domestic drafts ALL NIGHT, $5 appetizers and LIVE entertainment by DJ YOUNG VENOM and EMPTY ATLAS.  At midnight we will switch from a public event to a private party which is RSVP so message us on Facebook or call/text 601.540.6551 for the details. Get ready for the best New Years Eve Bash on the Rankin Rez!  $5 cover charge."

Mississippi Legends Grill is offering a Prime Rib or Fish Dinner with all you can drink for $60, plus live music by Jamie Mitchell, and a free ride home in the Reservoir area.  For Reservations, call Chris at 601.503.0451.

McB's Restaurant and Lounge offers Acoustic Crossroads, with a Champagne Toast at Midnight and breakfast thereafter.  $20 cover, and that includes a ride home in the "local area".

Do you have little ones that want to enjoy the fun?  Take them to the Mississippi Children's Museum for their Noon Year's Eve Celebration on December 31 at noon.  There will be a countdown, music and fun.  

Feel free to send me information about other events in the Reservoir area.  I don't discriminate.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Rez YMCA Polar Bear Jump

This New Year's Day, take the plunge for a good cause.  Weather forecast is (as it stands now) high 40's for 10 am with cloudy skies.  This ought to be good!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Local Man Saves a Life

This is the type of article I love to read all the time, but especially around Christmas.  Kate Royals of the Clarion Ledger tells of a Flowood teen who saved a man's life yesterday evening.

Johnny Taylor had no idea he would put some of the skills he learned in Army training to work when he came home for the holidays, but on Monday he found himself submerged in a small pond, desperately trying to help a man trapped inside his vehicle.

Read the rest of the article here.

Polarpalooza Fest for Special Olympics

Special Olympics Mississippi is hosting Polarpalooza Fest on February 14, 2015, at Madison Landing.  From the website:

Get freezin' for a reason at the festival with a cause!
The First Polarpalooza Featuring the Polar Plunge is coming! Thousands of Mississippians will make a pledge and take a frosty dip in the Ross Barnett Reservoir on Saturday, February 14, 2015, in honor of their favorite charity, Special Olympics Mississippi.
But this isn’t just another fundraising event. This is the premier event of the winter and the only major music festival in Central Mississippi. Featuring two-time Grammy® nominee headliners North Mississippi Allstars, rising blues star Jarekus Singleton and more, Polarpalooza is also an all-day concert with fun for the family, including a chili cookoff and much more right on Reservoir Landing in Ridgeland.

Event Info
What: Polarpalooza Featuring the Polar Bear Plunge
Bands: North Mississippi Allstars, Jarekus Singleton, Mustache The Band, Stogdaddy & the Good Time Band
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, February 14, 2015
Where: Madison Landing on the Barnett Reservoir, Ridgeland, MS 
How to Buy Tickets
  • Spectator: Buy a General Admission ticket, sample chili and see the show for $40
  • Plunger: Take the Plunge, See the Show, Get the Shirt for just $75
  • Too Chicken to Plunge but want to donate? Get two admissions and one chicken hat for $150
  • Lovers' Leap: Take the Plunge with Your One, Get Two Shirts & Two Robes for $250
  • Chili Cookoff: Build a four-person Chilli Cookoff team for $400
  • Children Admission: We have special rates for kids 15 and under, including the Plunge!
Build a Team
Don't plunge alone! Challenge your friends, co-workers and family to take the plunge with you! When you register, create a team and get it started. You'll all take the plunge for Special Olympics Mississippi together. 
How to Fundraise
Plungers can hold their place for just $10, and pledge to raise the remaining $65 or more through outreach to friends, family, co-workers and more. See you at Polarpalooza! 
There is also a Facebook Page.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Christmas Kayak

Members of the Central Mississippi Paddling Mafia took to the water Saturday evening for an impromptu lighted kayak parade.  Pictures posted to the Mafia's Facebook Page indicate a good time was had by all.  Take a look and relish the fact many are enjoying the beautiful resources we live near.  Merry Christmas, folks.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

This Week at the Rez -- Date Corrected to Prevent Amorite Invasion

·        Holiday Schedule for PRVWSD
The Governor has revised the state holiday schedule and the PRVWSD will now be closed on Thursday, December 25th and Friday, December 26th for the Christmas Holiday.
·        Consumer Warning
We have become aware that PRVWSD residents are receiving letters from a repair management corporation offering to insure buried water lines. 
The PRVWSD has no relationship with any such vendor and does not authorize or endorse this service. 

·        BASS to help The Rez celebrate 50th year

In 2015, Barnett Reservoir will celebrate its 50th year of impoundment.  The lake was filled in 1965 and immediately became a bass fishing destination.  Two years later in 1967, a young salesman from Alabama in Jackson for business — and some recreation with old friends — fished on The Rez.  That night, after dinner at Crechale's Restaurant on Highway 80, Ray Scott came up with the idea of tournament bass fishing on a regional scale, with grass roots appeal that could build the sport and industry. Thus was born the Bass Anglers Sportsman Society.  It's only fitting then that BASS will help celebrate the 50th anniversary of The Rez, kicking off its Central Division Open series at the Madison Landing March 12-14. 

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The Big Man at Winner's Circle Park

The City of Flowood is a generous host for Santa Claus.  Practically all Winter, Winner's Circle Park is the scene for "Christmas in the Park".  The Park is filled with Christmas lights, children, and laughter.  Some days, the Big Man himself makes an appearance!  

Santa will be at Winner's Circle Park tonight through the 20th between 5:30 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.(according to the City of Flowood's website).  After that, he's strictly in the toy making business. 

Monday, December 15, 2014

MS Blood Services to be at University Physicians (Grants Ferry) on Wednesday

From a friend:

MS Blood Services bus will be at the University Physicians Grants Ferry Parking Lot on Wednesday, December 17, between 10 am and 3 pm.  Everyone is welcome to drop by and donate. 

Blood donations are always needed to directly help the people of our community.  My son Andrew is doing well, but he occasionally needs blood products to support him during his treatment for leukemia.  The Children’s Cancer Clinic at Batson receives all of its blood products from MS Blood Services. 

Your donation can help save a life.   Consider coming out to donate.  It usually takes around 30 minutes.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Revamped Website for Rankin County

Check out the new and improved official website for Rankin County, Mississippi.  It received a facelift and it's much easier to maneuver and find information.  I assume it is still a work in progress. They only list 10 employees and only two phone numbers in their "Staff Directory".

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Brandon Head FB Coach Leaves for Madison Central

Tangentially appropriate to the Reservoir (it is a rival, and his cousin is the head ball coach at NWR). Brad Peterson, Head Football Coach at Brandon will replace legend Bobby Hall at Madison Central High School.  See the Clarion Ledger's story, here.  Peterson was 50-18 at Brandon.

Chief Dewitt's Retirement Party

As reported earlier, Chief Johnny Dewitt retires as top cop at the Flowood Police Department at the end of the year.  If so inclined, you are invited to attend a "come-and-go" retirement party at the G. Chastaine Memorial (Flowood) Library on Friday, December 19, 2014, between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.  The celebration is sponsored by the Flowood Chamber, and they are requesting you RSVP to 601.932.8007 (but that seems a bit much for a come-and-go).  

Polar Express at the Flowood Nature Park

The City of Flowood again hosts a special "Movie-n-Moonlight" this year at the Nature Park and Fitness Trail on Flowood Drive.  The City will show Polar Express on Thursday, December 18, 2014. The film will begin at dusk.  Bring your blankets and pack your supper.  Hot cocoa will be served, courtesy of the City and Renasant Bank.  Last year, over 300 folks attended this showing, so come early to claim your spot

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Wounded Bald Eagle Found Near Reservoir- UPDATED - Jackson, MS

*UPDATE -- Feds offering $2,500 reward for info leading to the arrest of the

There is a real winner out there somewhere, having shot the protected symbol of America.

Excerpts from's account:

RANKIN COUNTY, MS (Mississippi News Now) -On Sunday, a man hunting at the Three Prong Hunting Club, in Sand Hill, found two bald eagles sitting on the ground.
The men called local authorities, including the Mississippi Department of Wildlife and a local animal rehab group to get some help.
While trying to help the eagle with blood on its head, the other managed to fly away. 
The eagle was rushed to North Jackson Animal Hospital where it's being treated by Dr. Adrian Whittington and his staff.

"No one should be shooting an eagle under any circumstances," said Whittington. "I can't think of a reason why you would shoot a bird like that." 
Dr. Whittington says X-rays of the bird revealed several shotgun pellets lodged in his skin, but it's not known if those injuries are new or are old. What is certain is the bird refuses to fly.
Doctors have begun giving the bird medicine, and food, and plan to begin the rehabilitation process.
"Get him eating first, then once we feel comfortable with that we'll start flight conditioning," said Dr. Whittington. "That's where we get this bird in a position where he can fly 20 feet.  Then once were sure of that, at that point and time we'll consider releasing the bird."

If you have any information that can help, please contact the Mississippi Department of Wildlife.

PRVWSD December Board Meeting

The various committees of the PRVWSD Board of Directors meet this coming week in preparation for December's full Board meeting.  That full meeting will be Thursday, December 18, 2014, at 10:30 a.m. at PRVWSD headquarters in Ridgeland.

Parks Policy Committee meets 12/16 at 3:00 p.m.
Shoreline Development and Environmental Quality Committee meets 12/16 at 3:30 p.m.
Executive Committee meets 12/18 at 9:30 a.m.
Audit Committee meets 12/18 at 10:00 a.m.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Mobile Home off Northshore Causeway

So, this has sparked just a bit of controversy; let's open the discussion on it.  The other day, the PRVWSD began installing the Assistant Manager's residence at Timberlake Campground.  The current Manager's residence is being torn down to make way for additional pads.  Take a gander at the pictures below.

First, let's get the devil's advocate/tough love stuff out of the way:

1.  This isn't something the PRVWSD sprung out of nowhere.  For months, there have been lengthy discussions held, including the exact model of the home, location, and time of construction, at PRVWSD Board Meetings.  Objections could have been made to the Board of Directors by the public at those times.

2.  It doesn't look at worse than some of the jalopies not fit for the junk yard already taking up permanent residence on the border of Northshore Causeway in this campground.

3.  I haven't seen the plans, but I've been told significant landscaping will be taking place to provide a buffer from Northshore Parkway.

4.  There is an existing campground/trailer park, a storage rental business, and apartment complex right there together.  With that zoning combination, stuff like this is bound to happen.

5.  The PRVWSD makes too much money on these campgrounds to roll over.  That is why they wanted to expand over into Lakeshore Park last year.  That is why they are expanding within the existing Timberlake Campground now. And this won't be the end of it.

All that being said, this is not a move I recommend the PRVWSD make.  The PRVWSD should be doing everything it possibly can to remove existing eyesores and improve the aesthetics.  We are blessed with the most beautiful view in the Jackson Metro area.  We should be exploiting that, not smearing it.  

And another thing, keep in mind this is a product of your "new and improved" PRVWSD Board of Directors, which includes a higher number of leaseholders.  Your concerns need to be directed to them.  They voted for it unanimously.  See June 2014 minutes; all in favor.  See March 2014; all in favor.

More pictures below.

News on Numerous Coming Soons

Reader, Chris Merck was kind enough to post pictures on The Rez News Blog's Twitterfeed (@thereznewsblog) of the ongoing construction at Turtle Creek Point Park:

An the soon to be opened, Revell Ace Hardware:

He also mentioned Smokehouse Barbecue is coming to the old Pizza Hut/Spill Grill location.  I also heard a rumor Mugshots was building a location across the Spillway in Ridgeland, close to Buffalo Wild Wings.  

And, about that Cheddar's Scratch Kitchen.  View the menu here.  

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Winner's Circle Park Grand Lighting Tonight!!!!

Remember folks, the City of Flowood's Grand Lighting of the (Winner's Circle) Park and Chili Cook Off is tonight!  Get there around 5:30 p.m., if not earlier.  Santa, train rides, hot cocoa, and community.

Sponsored by the City of Flowood and Flowood Chamber of Commerce.  

Turtle Point Nature Trail

In comments to a post below, Chris Merck identified several new businesses or parks coming to the Reservoir area.  One of those was the Turtle Point Nature Trail.  For those unfamiliar with the park and kayak launch being built between Turtle Creek and Forest Point Subdivisions, see our old posts here and here.  Keep the Rez Beautiful has worked hard on this.  Much of the credit goes to them. Anyone know a tentative opening date?  I haven't heard.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Opening at the Old Cheddar's Location is . . .

. . . Cheddar's.  Cheddar's Scratch Kitchen, actually.  New management, and new branding set to highlight the "made from scratch" food.

Jingle Bell Market This Saturday at Trustmark Park

This Week at the Rez

·        Holiday Schedule for PRVWSD
The PRVWSD will be closed on Wednesday and Thursday, December 24th and 25th for the Christmas Holiday and again on Thursday and Friday, January 1st and 2nd for the New Year’s Holiday.   We wish a happy and safe holiday season for all.
·        New Assistant Campground Manager’s Residence
The new residence for the Assistant Campground Manager at Timberlake Campground is entering the final stages of setup.  The new residence is located on the northeast side of the campground and will include a garage structure, landscaping and fencing.  When setup is complete, work will begin to demolish the old manager’s home.

·        Fishing Fever
It's not yet winter, but fishermen are already suffering withdrawals — well, at least most are. Others have taken advantage of the recent warm spell to get in a few hours of action. "Anytime you have a three- or four-day warm stretch between cold spells, you can expect to see an increase in bass activity," said Pete Ponds, a pro angler from Gluckstadt. "They sense the opportunity to feed and they will move shallow to take advantage. The key in the late fall or winter is finding shallow feeding areas adjacent to, and I mean extremely close to, deep water. Pad stems along the river channel or near a creek channel on the main lake are a good place to go look." Crappie fishermen need to find deep water and use electronics to located big schools of suspended fish, either shad on which crappie feed or the crappie themselves. The old lake beds in the main lake, like Three Prong, Long Lake, Oil Well Woods and Saddle Bags are good places to look, but most fishermen just start at the Highway 43 Bridge and the bridge on Northshore Parkway, both of which form funnels and offer standing structure to hold fish.

·        Hunting Opportunities

With deer and duck seasons open, Barnett Reservoir offers sportsmen a perfect opportunity for some isolated hunting adventures. About 10,000 acres of Pearl River Valley Water Supply District property are open to hunting, including backwater areas that are extremely attractive to waterfowl. Thanks to two Arctic cold blasts, the duck migration was early this year and ducks are more plentiful than usual for December. Of course, it’s deer season, too, and PRVWSD has a lot of ideal habitat, especially along the upper river area. Hardy sportsmen with access to a boat can find plenty of open space to chase their game of choice. Maps and regulations are available at all PRVWSD offices and campgrounds, as well as online at

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Baker Not Running for AG

State Representative Mark Baker confirmed on the Paul Gallo show this morning he is running for re-election to the State House in 2015.  Mark's district encompasses portions of the Reservoir.  Mark is Chairman of House Judiciary Committee A, a powerful position.  It's good to have that kind of stick in our corner.

Flowood Police Chief Resigns

Flowood Police Chief Johnny Dewitt resigned yesterday during the Board of Aldermen meeting. Chief Dewitt will finish out the year before taking a job in the private sector.  Dewitt has served as Police Chief for Flowood for the past 14 years.  I'd have to say "job well done."  The difference in crime between Flowood and Jackson, with only a river separating us, is marked.  Thank you for keeping Flowood secure, Chief.  

Ag Museum is Back Open

The Ag Museum is back open!  Let the recent fire be the spark that draws you back this Christmas holiday.  Sadly, Country Christmas, the annual event held at the Ag Museum, will not be held this year.  That's a shame.  I imagine visitors would have swarmed the Museum.  I would link to the Christmas hours, but I don't believe the MDAC website is functioning this morning.

Monday, December 1, 2014

M-Braves Celebrate Cyber Monday

Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves Fundraising in His Backyard

Rankin County's own, Lt. Governor Tate Reeves, is hosting a fundraiser at Buddy and Joni McClain's home on December 8.  Just counting up the names on the invite, he's already raised $48,000.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Jackson Zoo is Open on Thanksgiving Day With Free Admission

Walk off some of that stuffing at the Jackson Zoo on Thanksgiving Day.  Admission is free.  The hours are from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Master Plan Award Redux

Here is the photo of the PRVWSD receiving the previously mentioned awards.  Specifically, the Central Mississippi Planning and Development District won both the 2014 Innovation Award from the National Association of Development Organizations, and the Best Project Award from the Mississippi Chapter of American Planning Associations.  Pictured are, left to right, Gray Outz (Community and Economic Development Planner with CMPDD), Jack Winstead (President of PRVWSD Board of Directors), John Sigman (Executive Director of PRVWSD), Mike Monk (Director of Community and Economic Development for CMPDD), and David Wade (Principal Planner with CMPDD)

Friday, November 21, 2014

Fit2Lead 5K and Kids Tri

The Rankin County Chamber of Commerce hosted their Glow Run last night at Shiloh Park.  My daughter and I ran together.  It's been a while since I ran a 5K, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.  So, I started looking at area races coming up.  Lo and behold, the Fit2Lead 5K and Kids Tri is this weekend at the Flowood YMCA.  I've run this the last two years.  It's a nice out and back, flat race from the Flowood YMCA.

Open up some room for that turkey by running in the event.  Registration form below.

Chancery Clerk Larry Swales Fundraiser

Larry Swales has served as Chancery Clerk for Rankin County for two terms.  Seeking a third, he announced for reelection in 2015.  He has an opponent, Greg Wilcox.  Greg currently is Supervisor for District for Rankin County, and Parks and Recreation Director for the City of Flowood.  

Larry is hosting a fundraiser, the invitation below:

Thursday, November 20, 2014

City of Flowood Grand Lighting and Chili Cook Off Info

CMPDD Wins Awards for PRVWSD Master Plan Work

Today, at the PRVWSD Board of Directors' meeting, the Central Mississippi Planning and Development District announced CMPDD received two awards related to the PRVWSD Master Plan. 

CMPDD Plan Receives State and National Awards

The Pearl River Valley Water Supply District (PRVWSD) Master Plan developed by the Central Mississippi Planning and Development District (CMPDD) has received two prestigious awards. 

The CMPDD received a 2014 Innovation Award from the National Association of Development Organizations (NADO) Research Foundation for the Pearl River Valley Water Supply District (PRVWSD) Master Plan.  NADO is a Washington, DC-based association that promotes programs and policies that strengthen local governments, communities, and economies through regional cooperation, program delivery, and comprehensive strategies.  The association’s Innovation Awards program recognizes regional development organizations and partnering organizations for improving the economic and community competitiveness of our nation’s regions and local communities. Award winners were showcased during NADO’s 2014 Annual Training Conference, held August 23 - 26 in Denver, Colorado. 

The CMPDD also received the Best Project Award from the Mississippi Chapter of the American Planning Association (APA-MS) for the Pearl River Valley Water Supply District (PRVWSD) Master Plan.  This award recognizes best practices, results, and state-of-the-art planning methods for an outstanding plan.  The award was presented to the CMPDD at the Mississippi and Alabama Chapters of the American Planning Association (APA) Joint Annual Conference, held November 12 – 14 in Tupelo, Mississippi.

The purpose of the Master Plan, which was adopted by the PRVWSD in December of 2013, is to serve as a policy guide for the physical and economic development of the Pearl River Valley Water Supply District (PRVWSD).  Elements included in this plan are Land Use, Transportation, Public Facilities along with a Capital Improvements Program, an Analysis of the Regional Economic Impact of PRVWSD, and the development of a Web-Based GIS Mapping Viewer.  The Master Plan can be viewed at

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

The Lights on Old Fannin are Functional

I can positively report the traffic lights on Old Fannin Road are functioning as of noon today.  Be careful out there.  Likely, some motorists are not used to the lights.

This Week at the Rez

From the PRVWSD:

·        Hunter walks up on big buck
Kiel Higginbotham of Brandon saw his investment in a draw hunt at Barnett Reservoir pay big dividends when he killed a 255-pound, 8-point on the Madison County side of the spillway. How he killed it is hard to believe. Read the story here,
·        Catfish bite in the cold
Ever wonder why you see so many fishermen bundled up in seemingly every piece of clothes they can find, sitting on the banks of Barnett Reservoir with an array of long surf-casting rods standing in rod holders? It's simple. Some of the best bank-fishing opportunities of the year come on the coldest days. It's a result of shad being caught in the shallows and dying in the cold water. Catfish come in for the easy feast, and opportunistic — and hardy — fishermen come out hoping to get one, too.

·        Keep it Clean, Keep it Green & Keep it Safe!  Community Fair to be held November 22nd

      A Lowe’s Community Partners grant will provide funding for the Reservoir’s First Community Fair, “Keep it Green, Keep it Clean & Keep it Safe,” November 22 at the Reservoir’s Community Center on Spillway Road in Brandon from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The fair is a free event with information on horticultural tips, crime prevention, composting, a plant swap, a native plant walk through the Botanical Gardens, and E-Cycling (electronics recycling provided by Magnolia Data Solutions) and more. Focusing on beautification, Keep the Reservoir Beautiful will be providing free tulip and daffodil bulbs to neighborhoods and churches to help beautify the Reservoir area.   For more information visit:

Reservoir Community Fair

Details about Keep the Rez Beautiful's "Reservoir Community Fair" this weekend in the below press release:

October 31, 2014 – Keep The Reservoir Beautiful (KRB) today announced that Lowe’s has awarded a $10,000 grant to support KRB’s mission to engage individuals in building and sustaining vibrant communities.
   *       *       *
   The Lowe’s Community Partners grant will provide funding for the Reservoir’s First Community Fair, “Keep it Green, Keep it Clean & Keep it Safe,” November 22 at the Reservoir’s Community Center on Spillway Road in Brandon from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The fair is a free event with information on horticultural tips, crime prevention, composting, a plant swap, a native plant walk through the Botanical Gardens, and E-Cycling (electronics recycling provided by Magnolia Data Solutions) and more. Focusing on beautification, KRB will be providing free tulip and daffodil bulbs to neighborhoods and churches to help beautify the Reservoir area.
   The grant will also be utilized to help landscape a green space area on Spillway Road demonstrating Best Management Practices to help promote water quality in Turtle Creek and the Reservoir.
   *       *       *
   KRB is a nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting and enhancing the Reservoir watershed and its shoreline communities and neighborhoods. KRB covers parts of Rankin and Madison counties and is staffed by solely unpaid volunteers. For more information, email KRB at, visit, follow us on Twitter at;TreasuretheRez or find our Keep the Rez Beautiful fan page on Facebook.
Read the rest of the release here.  I've said it once, and I'll say it again: if you want to see a true grassroots, community team doing good for the Reservoir, look no further than KRB.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Flowood Rotary Doing Good in the Rez Community

Above, members of the Flowood Rotary Club hand out dictionaries to the third graders of NW Rankin Elementary School.  As part of Rotary International's Dictionary Project, the local club was able to provide each third grader their very own dictionary.  

Today, they handed out dictionaries to the third graders of Flowood Elementary (pictured below):

Large Buck Taken During Rez Draw Hunt

Local resident Kiel Higginbotham took a large bodied buck from his Madison-Spillway draw hunt on Thursday, November 13. The deer, taken from the ground, with a bow, weighed in at 255 pounds. Mississippi Sportsman Magazine already has a story written by the Rez' own, Bobby Cleveland. From the article:  

So a little before 7 a.m., with the sun above the horizon, the two guys walked into the woods and right to an unsuspecting buck that was taking a morning stroll through the bottom.
“We definitely weren’t intending on hunting on foot, just simply easing through the woods to quietly find a place on the edge of one of the sloughs to climb,” Higginbotham said. “I looked up and saw this buck and I told Brandon, ‘Stop, buck!’”
“We froze, right there,” said Dewease, of Collinsville. “I was about five yards behind him and I stopped and sort of half crouched and was looking right over his shoulder.”
So, now. let’s review their predicament. They are fully loaded down with climbing stands and backpacks strapped to their bodies, their hands full of bows and other equipment. A buck, a fat one at that, was about 60 yards away and walking toward an otherwise perfect shooting situation.

Read the rest here.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Rankin Glow Run

Only it's second year, and the Glow Run is already one of the biggest runs in Rankin County.  This race is organized by the hard working staff, and Membership Committee members, of the Rankin County Chamber of Commerce.  The race is Thursday, November 20 (less than a week), and is held at Shiloh Park in Brandon, Mississippi, at 6 p.m.  Over 350 have signed up for the race already. Register here, and visit the Facebook page here.  It's only $10 for children under 12, and they love the glow in the dark aspect.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

This Week at the Rez

·               Barnett Reservoir Arts & Crafts Fair:
The Barnett Reservoir’s first Arts & Crafts Fair will take place Saturday, November 15th from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. at Lakeshore Park in Brandon. Free Admission and plenty of parking on the grounds. We have 45 vendors signed up which include such artists as: wood workers, photographers, oil and watercolor painters, potters, furniture makers, stained glass artists, up-cycle artistry, metal works and jewelry makers. This is the opportunity to shop local, for one of a kind gifts, with the beautiful park and reservoir as your backdrop.

·               Lucky 7 Run

The Lucky 7 Run will kick off at 3pm at Legend’s Bar & Grill on Lakeland Drive with a ceremonial lighting of the Special Olympics torch and take runners across the spillway to McB’s Grill in Ridgeland for an indoor/outdoor after-party.  Visit: for more information.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

No Charges in Cat Throwing Incident

Recently, a woman was witnessed throwing a cat from the Northshore Causeway into the Reservoir. The authorities were called and the cat rescued. The cat is fine. The woman will not face charges. Here is the story from the Clarion Ledger explaining why:

A Rankin County woman who allegedly picked a cat up by its neck and tossed it into the Ross Barnett Reservoir on Friday will not be charged for the action.
Mississippi News Now reported that the 30-year-old woman is a mentally disabled Iraq War veteran. She is currently receiving treatment.

See the full article here (not much more to it).

Nick Trees is Setting Up Right Now

Nick Trees already began setting up for 2014.  Instead of the old Rapids on the Reservoir, this year, they are setting up in the empty lot in front of Dollar General on Spillway Road (in front of Fred's Dollar Store).  Here is the announcement.

Here is the meat:
Hours of operation for . . . NickTrees for Blair E. Batson are Monday through Saturday 9:00 A.M. - 9:00 P.M.; Sunday 1:00 P.M. - 9:00 P.M.
The second and largest location is at parking lot between Fred's Pharmacy and Dollar General (1900 Spillway Rd., Brandon, MS 39047). This location has:
  1. Fresh cut Fraser Fir, direct from our farm in Ashe County, North Carolina ranging in height from 3' to 14'.
  2. Fresh cut Noble Fir from Oregon in heights ranging from 6' to 9', and
  3. Leyland Cypress in limited numbers from the Rankin County, Mississippi farm with heights from 10' to 14'.

Thank a Veteran Today

Happy Veterans Day, and a heartfelt thank you to those who shouldered our freedom as members of the armed forces.  I get weepy thinking of the sacrifice of those like my grandfather (still doing great at 95), who was plucked off the Pontotoc County farm to fight in wild and strange places during World War II; or my father, who defended the line in Korea, and made a career of the military thereafter.  I understand, and appreciate.  Thank you.

You still have time to make the Veterans Day Ceremony at the War Memorial in Jackson.  See details in this prior post

Monday, November 10, 2014

Smokin' on the Rez BBQ Winners

Per the Barnett Reservoir Foundation, the following are the winners from the Smokin' on the Rez BBQ Competition:

2014 Smokin’ on The Rez BBQ Winners

MBN Pro Division
Grand Champion
Diamond D (Whole Hog)

Whole Hog
1. Diamond D
2. Victory Lane
3. Fireman John’s
4. Slap Jo Mama

1. Red Hot Smokers
2. Victory Lane
3. Slap Jo Mama
4. Fireman John’s

1. Red Hot Smokers
2. Slap Jo Mama
3. Ubon’s
4. Smoke Dawg BBQ

Challenger Division
Grand Champion
Rib-Ka-Teers (Ribs)

1. 3 Stacks
2. Moonlight Smokers
3. Rib-Ka-Teers

1. Rib-Ka-Teers
2. Phat Chance
3. Pork Plus

1. Victory Lane
2. Smokin’ Bandits

1. Budro’s BBQ
2. Pork Plus

1. High Comfort
2. Brandon Knights

Taste of The Rez
1. The Machine (Shuckers)
2. High Comfort

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

McCrory Resigns From School Board

Cecil McCrory resigned today from the Rankin County School Board, for reasons unknown to me, or to the Clarion Ledger.  See the C-L's article about it, here.  Kingfish has a bit more.

Election News

Senator Thad Cochran won statewide with healthy margins (75%+ in Rankin County).  Congressman Gregg Harper from Pearl won with 80%+ in Rankin County.  Grumpy Farmer fell behind by over 100 votes in early precincts, but rolled to victory with 53.8% of the vote over challenger John Waits. And 91% of Rankin Countians believe the right to hunt and fish should be a part of our State Constitution. See election totals here for yourself.  

Below is a picture from Ground Zero before precinct totals began rolling in. The County counted votes at the EOC/911 Building on Marquette Road rather than the Justice Courtroom.  Much better.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Arts and Crafts Fair Information

Below, see a Press Release from the PRVWSD concerning the upcoming Arts and Crafts Fair

BRANDON — An enhanced holiday shopping experience — a leisurely stroll through a beautiful park with unique products made by local artists and a lakeside view of Barnett Reservoir — will be available Nov. 15 at the first Arts & Crafts Fair at Lakeshore Park.
Over 40 exhibitors will have booths at the event, which is sponsored by the Barnett Reservoir Foundation and the Pearl River Valley Water Supply District. Admission is free to shoppers and plenty of free parking is available at the spacious 120 + acre park.
“The great thing is that we will only feature local artisans and there will be no mass-produced products,” said Cindy Ford, the event organizer. “These are vendors who will feature hand-crafted gifts. It is limited to products that are at least 50 percent homemade or recycled.
“Arts & Crafts at The Rez is a unique shopping experience with unique gifts in a beautiful setting overlooking the reservoir.”
Ford said the list of vendors already includes wood workers, jewelry makers, photographers, oil and watercolor painters, potters, furniture makers, stained glass artists, “up cycle” artistry, metal workers and doll makers.
“We still have plenty of room for more vendors, and the fee is just $25 for a single booth,” Ford said.
The park is pet-friendly, but a leash is required.
For more information on the event, including exhibitor registration applications, visit online at

Election Day

Today is election day 2014!  The only contested items on the ballot in the Reservoir are U.S. Senator (Thad Cochran vs. the Ghost of Chris McDaniel), and U.S. Congressman (Gregg Harper vs. Some Guy Who At Least Has a Famous Name Going For Him).  There is also a proposed amendment to the Mississippi Constitution on the ballot.  Said amendment would make the right to hunt and fish a Constitutional right in this state, rather than a privilege.

I will live tweet the Rankin County election results later tonight on the @reznewsblog twitter handle. Give me a follow if you haven't already.  Ballot boxes start trickling in to the EOC/911 Building on Marquette road around 7:15 p.m.

Not sure where you vote?  Check out this link.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Overlay Meeting -- One Year Later

Mark your calendars for Tuesday, November 18, 2014, at 6 p.m.  At that date and time, at the Northwest Rankin Middle School, there will be a community meeting concerning the Overlay District.  The purpose will be to review the Overlay in the year since passage, so that it can be more effectively utilized in the future.

The following are anticipated to present during the meeting:

State Reps., Mark Baker and Brent Powell.
State Sen., Josh Harkins
Supervisor (Dist. 2 - Interim) Rodney Keith
Rankin County Office of Community Development, Renee Lawrence
PRVWSD, Exec. Dir., John Sigman
Sheriff, Bryan Bailey
Justice Court Judge, John Shirley

There will be a time for questions and answers.  If you are concerned about the Overlay and curious about its effect, please plan to attend.

Veterans Day Meals

Veterans Day is Tuesday, November 11.  One reader graciously sent in a list of restaurants offering free meals or other deals for our nation's veterans.  Here are those in the Jackson Metro area:

Applebee’s -- Veterans and active duty military receive a free meal from a limited menu, on Veterans Day, Tuesday, November 11.

Golden Corral -- Golden Corral Restaurants' Military Appreciation Monday free dinner will be available on Monday, November 17, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Military retirees, veterans, active duty, National Guard and Reserves are all welcome.

Krispy Kreme – Krispy Kreme is offering a free doughnut and small coffee to all veterans on Tuesday, November 11 at participating locations.

LongHorn Steakhouse – Veterans and current service members receive a complimentary Texas Tonion appetizer and non-alcoholic beverage from a select menu on Tuesday, November 11.

Olive Garden – On Tuesday, November 11, all veterans and current service members get a free meal from a limited menu.

Outback Steakhouse – All active and former service members receive a free Bloomin’ Onion and a beverage on November 11. Outback is also offering active and former service members 15% off their meals Nov. 12 through Dec. 31.

Red Lobster -- Veterans, retired and active-duty military personnel receive a complimentary appetizer from a limited menu from Monday, November 10 to Thursday, November 13.

Shoney's -- Shoney's will be offering a free All-American Burger to veterans and active duty service members on Tuesday, November 11.

Texas Roadhouse -- Texas Roadhouse locations nationwide will offer veterans a free lunch on Tuesday, November 11 from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Offer is good for active duty, retired or former U.S. military.

Travel Centers of America -- On Tuesday, November 11, all CDL drivers who are military veterans eat free at participating full-service restaurants.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Community Bank Groundbreaking

Finally, someone is putting a bank in the Reservoir area.

Community Bank invites you to a groundbreaking on Tuesday, November 4, at 10:30 a.m., for their newest branch. The location is 1871 Spillway Road, which, according to Google Maps, puts it directly next to the big Bank Plus at the corner of Spillway and Northshore/Old Fannin.

Veterans Day Ceremony

All are invited to the Veterans Day Ceremony at the War Memorial Building Auditorium on November 11, 2014.  This thirty minute ceremony will feature Major General Augustus L. Collins, Adjutant General of the Mississippi National Guard.  The invitation is below.

According to Wikipedia (arbiter of all things true on the interwebs, right?), the history of Veterans Day is as follows:

Thursday, October 30, 2014

This Week at the Rez

From the PRVWSD:

·               Barnett Reservoir Arts & Crafts Fair:
The Barnett Reservoir’s first Arts & Crafts Fair will take place Saturday, November 15th from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. at Lakeshore Park in Brandon. Free Admission and plenty of parking on the grounds. We have 40 vendors already signed up which include such artists as: wood workers, photographers, oil and watercolor painters, potters, furniture makers, stained glass artists, up-cycle artistry, metal works and jewelry makers. This is the opportunity to shop local, for one of a kind gifts, with the beautiful park and reservoir as your backdrop.

·               Pearl River Coordinating Committee:
The Biannual Meeting of the Pearl River Coordinating Committee will meet today at the PRVWSD main office boardroom. Committee members from such agencies as National Weather Services, USGS, MEMA, FEMA, USACE and NOAA are included. This committee reviews major weather events in past year, river gage data, operational plans, and computer modeling.     

·               Successful Archery Draw Hunt:
Archery hunters involved in the draw hunts below the dam and in Pelahatchie Bay have had a successful couple of weeks.  Four deer have been harvested so far this season.

·               Fishing activity slows, but not the bites:

Fishing reports are few and far between, due to the annual seasonal drop in fishing activity. However, those fishermen going are catching fish. The bass have moved up to the edges of the vegetation, following the shad migration from deeper water. Crappie are being caught in the main lake around cover 8-10 feet deep. Catfish are still falling for baits suspended from jugs, and surprisingly are biting best on shallow-rigged jugs in deep water. Big striped bass are holding on deep contour changes in the lower main lake but are on the move — here one day, way over there the next. They are constantly in search of food.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

PRVWSD Arts and Crafts Fair Media Release

Hobnob Mississippi 2014

From the Mississippi Economic Council website:
The 13th Annual Hobnob Mississippi will be held on Wednesday, October 29 from 8:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. This upcoming MEC Hobnob already is promising to be the best-attended ever -- and if you have never attended, it is a Mississippi event worthy of your time.
Held at the Mississippi Coliseum at the State Fairgrounds in Jackson, Hobnob Mississippi is a fun political rally-styled event that features Mississippi's statewide elected officials and candidates for statewide office. 
U.S. Senator Thad Cochran, the Republican nominee, and his Democratic challenger Travis Childers will speak during Hobnob, which takes place less than one week before the general election.
Governor Phil Bryant, Lt. Governor Tate Reeves, and Speaker of the House Philip Gunn will provide the latest on what’s happening at the State Capitol. Other statewide elected officials set to speak are Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann, Attorney General Jim Hood, State Auditor Stacey Pickering, State Treasurer Lynn Fitch, Agriculture Commissioner Cindy Hyde-Smith and Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney.
This year, we have improved our MEC Hobnob layout -- and service to our attendees -- by:
  • Doubling the number of serving lines so we can feed the crowd a sumptuous buffet lunch with a minimal wait.
  • Reconfiguring the MEC Hobnob layout to increase the traffic, visibility and participation by corporate booth sponsors.
  • Dramatically increasing the number of audio speakers inside and outside the tent so that those who Hobnob outside can still hear the speakers -- and those who Hobnob inside won't be disturbed by the Hobnobbers.
The event, which draws more than 1,700 business and community leaders, features a morning of stump-styled political speaking and entertainment. Hobnob concludes with a buffet lunch featuring fried catfish, bar-b-que chicken and all the fixing. Sponsorship opportunities and special discounted tickets for MEC members are available.
Hobnob Schedule
-9:30 – Welcome
-9:35-9:45 – Mike Chaney, Insurance Commissioner
-9:45-9:55 – Cindy Hyde-Smith, Agriculture Commissioner
-9:55-10:05 – Stacey Pickering, State Auditor
-10:05-10:15 – Lynn Fitch, State Treasurer
-10:15-10:20 – Sanderson Farms Championship – Focus on Blair E. Batson
-10:20-10:30 – Jim Hood, Attorney General
-10:30-10:40 – Delbert Hosemann, Secretary of State
-10:40-10:45 – Alveno Castilla, MEC Chair, welcome
-10:45-10:55 – Philip Gunn, Speaker of the House
-10:55-11:05 – Tony Yarber, Mayor City of Jackson
-11:05-11:15 – Travis Childers, Democratic Nominee for U.S. Senator
-11:15-11:25 – Tate Reeves, Lt. Governor
-11:25-11:35 – Thad Cochran, U.S. Senator
-11:35-11:50 – Phil Bryant, Governor
-11:50-Noon – Miss Mississippi Jasmine Murray
- Noon – Lunch is served
- 1:15 - Minor Party Candidates
- 1:30 - Adjourn