Hope Mills News

Town set to host fall litter sweep and shredding event- CANCELLED

shred eventEditor’s note: Due to Hurricane Florence this event has been cancelled.

The annual fall litter sweep for the town of Hope Mills is scheduled for this Saturday, Sept. 22. 

The town is seeking volunteers to fan out from Town Hall on Rockfish Road and either pick up roadside trash in their own neighborhoods, or if they prefer, visit a location identified by the town as an area in need of a good cleanup. 

The parks and recreation department previously handled the event, but Beth Brown and the storm water department now oversee it. 

Brown said volunteers of all ages are welcome to come out and take part in the sweep. Younger children are welcome to assist, but they need to be accompanied by an adult. 

All volunteers need to come to Town Hall the day of the sweep at 8 a.m. and sign up and pick up some items they’ll need to take part. 

Among the things the town will pro­vide are reflective vests, trash bags, devices to pick up the trash with and gloves. Water will also be provided to the volunteers. 

Once each person has finished col­lecting trash, the bags can either be left in the area where they were collected for roadside trash pickup or brought back to Town Hall. 

Brown added that the emphasis is on gathering roadside trash and that volun­teers shouldn’t wander off into wooded areas and definitely need to avoid going near a waterway. 

In addition to the litter sweep, the town will hold a shredding event on Saturday, also at Town Hall. 

Town residents can bring all types of personal documents to be shredded. 

The documents will not be shredded on-site, Brown said. They will have bins for people to bring their material to shred, which can include CD’s. 

Folks can bag or box their documents to bring them down and deposit them in the collection bins, Brown said. 

If anyone has questions about either the litter sweep or the shredding event, they can contact Brown or Tyler Riddle at 910-429-3516 or 910-429-3517.

SouthView opening food pantry to aid students

15 hope mills food bankSince coming to South View High School as the school’s ROTC advisor, retired Sgt. Maj. Ruby Murray became aware of a problem. 

“I noticed there were a lot of kids that weren’t getting nutrition, not getting any food whatsoever,’’ she said. 

She was referring to students who did not qualify for either a free or reduced lunch, but still had problems finding enough to eat. 

Murray shared a vision originally pushed by South View’s principal, Dr. Tonjai Robertson, of finding a way to help out those undernourished students who fell through the cracks. 

Over the summer, Murray said she had the idea of coming up with a food pantry created from public donations. 

Now she’s on the way to achieving that goal. 

“Basically, donations will be non­perishable food, stuff for breakfast and lunch,’’ Murray said. The plan is to store the food in a pan­try at South View, then Murray and par­ent volunteers will prepare pre-packed breakfasts and lunches and give them to students who qualify. 

Murray is hoping to get donations from the general public and is also lining up donations from commercial vendors. 

Anyone interested in making a dona­tion to the program can drop off food at South View during regular school hours, or call the school and make arrangements for Murray to come and pick it up. 

For those who would prefer to give monetary donations so Murray can go and purchase the food directly, those will be accepted as well. 

It’s hoped that the program will be up and running by the end of the month. Murray said they are still working out the kinks that will determine which stu­dents at the school will be eligible for the free meals. 

For further infromation on the program, contact Murray at South View at 910-425-8181.

Photo: Retired Sgt. Maj. Ruby Murray

Taste of Oktoberfest comes to Hope Mills

14 oktobeerfestA touch of Germany is coming to Hope Mills later this month as the Boarding House Treasures & Tea Room on Ellison Street holds its first ever Oktoberfest Beer and Brat Bash. 

Owner Carla Welsh got the idea for the event after frequent visits to the town of Helen, Georgia, which she said is built around German culture and even includes German architecture, shops and food. 

“It’s about as close as you can get to the real Oktoberfest,’’ Welsh said. “They start Oktoberfest in Munich on Sept. 15 and it goes a month and a half. We’re doing this in the last weekend of September.’’ 

Welsh has scheduled her event for Saturday, Sept. 29, from 6-9 p.m. 

Because of limited seating, only 25 people inside the tea room at a time, call ahead and make a res­ervation. The cutoff is Sept. 24 at 5 p.m. After then, you can try to take part, but it will be first come, first served after the folks with reservations are taken care of. 

If the weather’s nice, Welsh said there is limited outdoor seating available. 

Obviously, beer will be a featured attraction at the event. Welsh will offer an assortment of domestic and foreign beers. The list of domestics includes Bud and Bud Lite and Coors and Coors Lite along with Yuengling. The foreign selection includes Corona and Corona Lite, Blue Moon, Guinness Stout and a Dirtbag Mocha Porter. 

Prices for the beers are $3, $4 or $5, Welsh said. 

The main course food items will be bratwurst braised with onions and beer or hot dogs for those who aren’t fond of bratwurst. 

There will be an assortment of sides, including German potato salad, red cabbage with apples, beer cheese and hard pretzels. 

You can put together a meal with bratwurst and one of the main sides for $12, or for $10 you can get a hot dog or bratwurst with the beer cheese or pretzels. 

At press time, Welsh was working to get a live band to play German music during the event, but said that failing that, German music would be pro­vided in some format. 

In addition to the Oktoberfest, Welsh’s husband, Mason, will also be having a sale of the various antiques, collectibles and gifts that are located on the premises. There will be a 20 percent discount on all items available for sale. 

Welsh added that reservations for the Oktoberfest are $10 per person in advance and are not refundable. 

For further information on the event, visit the Facebook page, Boarding House Tea Room. 

To make a reservation, call 910-527-7455.

Hope Mills Event Calendar

Editor’s note: This edition of the Hope Mills calendar was compiled before the arrival of Hurricane Florence. Some or all of these events could be affected by the storm. Please check to see if they are still scheduled before attending. 

Meetings

For details about all meetings and activities, including location where not listed, call Town Clerk Jane Starling at 910-426-4113. Most meetings take place at Town Hall or the Hope Mills Parks and Recreation center. 

• Mayor’s Youth Leadership Monday, Sept. 24, 7 p.m. 

• Board of Commissioners Monday, Sept 24, 7 p.m. 

• Appearance Committee Tuesday, Sept. 25, 7 p.m. 

• Veterans Committee, Thursday, Sept. 27, 7 p.m. 

Activities

• Hope Mills Area Kiwanis Club at Sammio’s, second Tuesdays at noon and fourth Tuesdays at 6 p.m. For details, call 910-237-1240. 

Ole Mills Days 2018 Saturday, Oct. 27, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. For more details and vendor informa­tion, contact Parks and Recreation Director Kenny Bullock: 910-426-4107 or kwbullock@townof­hopemills.com. 

Pumpkin decorating for seniors Tuesday, Oct. 30, 10 a.m.-noon in the small activity room of Parks and Rec. No fee, but advanced sign-up is required. Only 20 pumpkins available. Prizes will be awarded for the best three pumpkins.

Ghostly Gala for seniors Wednesday, Oct. 31, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. in the Parks and Rec community room. Advanced sign-up at the reception desk required. Costumes are preferred but not required. There will be a costume contest and pumpkin decorating contest. Potluck social. Bring main dish, side dish or dessert. 

Promote yourself: Email hopemills@upandcomingweekly.com.

The argument for two-year terms

13 hope mills opinionIn the spring of this year, Hope Mills Mayor Pro Tem Mike Mitchell proposed making a drastic change to the town’s charter, suggesting the commissioners serve four-year staggered terms instead of the current two-year terms. After prolonged discussions, it was agreed to put the issue on the November ballot and let the citizens of Hope Mills make the decision. 

Many citizens are leery of extend­ing that much power to a board of commissioners that’s struggled to accomplish, well, anything. Just weeks before the four-year term issue, the board discussed and then awarded themselves substantial raises and benefits packages. The commissioners each received a 53 percent increase in pay. Mitchell received a 48 percent increase and Mayor Jackie Warner received an 84 percent increase. Additionally, they each received a $30 stipend toward their cell phone costs, a $100 stipend to cover travel expenses, and dental, vision and life insurance. It was their last notable “accomplishment.” 

The board has waffled back and forth on a $28,000 partnership with Up & Coming Weekly. In March, Commissioners Jerry Legge, Meg Larson and Jessie Bellflowers voted to end the partnership once it terminated in September, but Commissioners Pat Edwards and Mitchell wanted to keep it. 

Ironically, during an August meeting, it was Mitchell who suggested the board end the agree­ment. While the partnership is described as a gentleman’s agreement and no official contract was ever signed, Mitchell has since used social media and local AM radio stations to announce the board’s decision to “terminate” the contract. 

In reality, the board paid the contract in full and let it lapse without renewal a week ago. Mitchell took to social media again last week to blast the previous board for entering into the agreement. Citizens should be asking why he voted to keep it during the March vote if he felt the partnership wasn’t advantageous to the town. He seemingly wasted a good deal of taxpayers’ money on some­thing he claims was a detriment. 

Likewise, the board has squabbled back and forth on the second phase of the lake bed project. While the previous board voted and approved a working model, this board has systematically voted to undo everything the previous board accomplished. Ten months into their administration, they’re still asking for changes to the already-approved plans. Amongst other issues, they’re still debating whether they want one or two ladders in the swimming area. As of Sept. 11, they haven’t made a single decision but have asked for dozens of revisions. 

All of Cumberland County is aware the board voted to end negotiations with the Lone Survivor Foundation after asking for an official financial offer. But not everyone is aware that a number of the town’s citizens have formed an unofficial organiza­tion in support of LSF. 

Those citizens scheduled a public rally for Aug. 16. The rally was hosted in a local church and was an effort to bring the veteran community together to discuss ideas to help LSF sway the board. One day prior to the rally, Legge sent an email to town staff referring to the rally as a protest. 

“It is my understanding that some may want to stop the food truck rodeo that is supposed to be a family event,” Legge said. He also implied some town staff and elected officials were planning to participate in the protest. His email included a request for an ordinance review. Hours were wasted as town staff reviewed dozens of ordinances to appease Legge. 

Grilley Mitchell, who works at the Alms House in Hope Mills, worked tire­lessly to schedule and advertise that rally. Grilley Mitchell is a known sup­porter of the Alms House, the organiza­tion the Hope Mills Food Truck Rodeos benefit. I don’t know why Legge would think Grilley Mitchell would schedule a protest to disrupt the Food Truck Rodeo, and in turn hurt the Alms House. As of today, Legge has not responded to my inquiries about the email. 

These are just some of the many issues that have halted the board’s progress and prevented the “Team Hope Mills’ mentality Mike Mitchell cam­paigned for. The board has allowed egos and inferi­ority complexes to hinder their decision-making to the detriment of the whole community. 

Each week, I’ll be posting an article on hopemills. net, highlighting the failures of individual board members and stressing the importance of voting “No” to four-year terms. For now, I challenge each of you to review the minutes and video from this board’s meetings and decide for yourselves if this board deserves longer terms.

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