Hope Mills News

Hope Mills Events Calendar

Meetings

For details about all meetings and activities, including location where not listed, call Town Clerk Jane Starling at 910-426-4113.

Historic Preservation Commission Wednesday, May 8, 5-6 p.m., Parks and Recreation Building

Board of Commissioners Monday, May 20, 7 p.m., Luther Meeting Room, Town Hall

Lake Advisory Committee Tuesday, May 21, 6 p.m., Parks and Recreation Building

Veterans Affairs Commission Thursday, May 23, 6:30 p.m., Parks and Recreation Building

Appearance Committee Tuesday, May 28, 6:30 p.m., Parks and Recreation Building

Activities

Citizens Academy Tuesday, May 14, 6 p.m.-8 p.m., Town Hall

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.

Hope Mills Parks and Recreation Senior programs at Parks and Recreation Building. Senior programs are for those ages 55 and up who are residents of Cumberland County. Various activities, especially Zumba classes, are scheduled Monday through Sunday throughout the day. For details on times and days, check the schedule at townofhopemills.com. You can call the recreation center at 910-426-4109 or email Kasey Ivey at kivey@townofhopemills.com.

Promote yourself

Email hopemills@upandcomingweekly.com.

Hope Mills fire department earns high national rating

16Hope Mills fire chief chuck Hodges copyA national car rental company once had a major advertising campaign based on the notion that since they were No. 2, they tried harder.

Nobody’s suggesting the Hope Mills Fire Department do the same thing, but the No. 2 rating it received from the North Carolina Office of the State Fire Marshall is something to brag about. 

A No. 1 rating is next to impossible to get according to Derrick Clouston, one of the people involved with handing the ratings out. There are currently 1,252 fire departments in the state. Clouston said only nine have No. 1 ratings.

Clouston said what it takes to get a rating of one varies by community. “It’s not a cookiecutter process,’’ he said. “You can’t compare one community to another.’’

The No. 2 rating Hope Mills received is also based on support Hope Mills could get at a fire from surrounding departments, like Fayetteville, Stoney Point or Pearce’s Mill, Clouston said. 

Mike Williams, who also works with the office that handles the inspections, said the rating is based on a number of factors, including the county water system, communication system, overall operation of the local fire department and its training.

Williams said the high rating Hope Mills earned, which will go into effect in August this year, shows Hope Mills has done a great job maintaining its overall efficiency as a fire department.

Hope Mills fire chief Chuck Hodges is delighted with the rating Hope Mills got, adding that to him it’s like getting a one. “Our guys are pretty ecstatic,’’ he said. “You’re recognized nationwide with this rating. For a fire chief, it’s saying how I stack up, not in other departments by size. This is how I stack up against every fire department in the United States.’’

Earning the rating involved a lot of hard work by Hodges and his staff. Much of the inspection for the rating involves going through paperwork, including years of service test records. Hodges said the Hope Mills fire department team assembled the records ahead of time as much as possible to make the process go smoother.

But there is also a physical inspection involved. “They open every compartment on every truck,’’ Hodges said. They also check to make sure all the needed equipment is there, going so far as to count how many pike poles of certain lengths a truck carries.

“They look at how many trucks we send to certain types of calls, how many people we have on those types of calls,’’ Hodges said.

The tangible benefit for the town, aside from having a fire department ready to handle the job required, is how it can affect the community’s insurance rates.

“The lower your rating, the less insurance premiums you pay as far as the town is concerned,’’Hodges said. “We look very good to businesses and developers. That’s a selling point to them.

“You can move into Hope Mills, open a business in Hope Mills, and you’re going to pay less insurance premiums because of the ratings. Commercial properties really see savings when you get below a five.

“For any town officials trying to recruit business or development in the town, that’s a feather in the cap.’’

Photo: Chuck Hodges

Hope Mills Events Calendar

Meetings

For details about all meetings and activities, including location where not listed, call Town Clerk Jane Starling at 910-426-4113.

Festival Committee Monday, May 6, 6 p.m., Town Hall

Mayor’s Youth Leadership Committee May 6, 6 p.m., Town Hall (in conjunction with Festival Committee)

Board of Commissioners Monday, May 6, 7 p.m., Luther Board Room, Town Hall

Citizens Academy Tuesday, May 7, 6-8 p.m., Town Hall

Historic Preservation Commission Wednesday, May 8, 5-6 p.m., Parks and Recreation Building

Activities

Hope Meals Food Truck Rodeo Thursday, May 2, 5-8 p.m., Town Hall rear parking lot

Veterans Outreach Day Friday, May 3, 9 a.m.-1 p.m., VFW Post 10630

Hazardous waste collection, shred event and spring litter sweep Saturday, May 4, 9 a.m., Town Hall

Good 2 Grow Farmers Market Saturday, May 4, 9 a.m., Town Hall

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.

Hope Mills Parks and Recreation Senior programs at Parks and Recreation Building. Senior programs are for those ages 55 and up who are residents of Cumberland County. Various activities, especially Zumba classes, are scheduled Monday through Sunday throughout the day. For details on times and days, check the schedule at townofhopemills.com. You can call the recreation center at 910-426-4109 or email Kasey Ivey at kivey@townofhopemills.com.

Promote yourself

Email hopemills@upandcomingweekly.com.

National Day of Prayer event set in Hope Mills

13Town HallThe town of Hope Mills will hold its annual observance of National Day of Prayer on Thursday, May 2, at noon at the flagpole at Town Hall.

In the event of inclement weather, the ceremony will be moved indoors to the nearby Parks and Recreation Department building.

Clergy and lay people from various denominations in Hope Mills will participate in the ceremony, according to the Rev. Bob Kretzu of Hope Mills United Methodist Church.

“I think we tend to forget the spiritual aspect of our national life,’’ said Kretzu. “We watch the news or listen to news or read the news, and we complain. We think, what can we do?” 

Kretzu suggested the answer is prayer. “We can have a huge influence through prayer,’’ he said. “I think most Christians believe that. You can accomplish things in prayer long before they are manifested physically.’’

The theme of this year’s National Day of Prayer is “Love One Another.’’

“That is such a need for both our community and our nation, to stop being divided and treating each other like enemies and pariahs, to love one another as Americans, whether or not people are Christians,’’ Kretzu said, “to start showing that by the way we respect each other.’

Kretzu said anyone who believes in prayer, regardless of their faith, is welcome to attend the Hope Mills event. “I’ve joined in worship services at mosques and synagogues,’’ he said. “I think people of faith in prayer have a lot in common, even if they’re not members of the same religion.’’

Pastor Wesley Holmes of the Hope Mills Church of God agreed with Kretzu that prayer brings people together and helps unify both the community and the nation.

“I think a lot of times we can learn from one another and see we don’t have as many differences as we think we do,’’ Holmes said. “We’re serving the same God, coming together to pray to the same God. We may use different methods of doing that, different backgrounds we come from, but we’re praying to the one, true God.’’

Holmes is also appreciative that local government leaders come to take part in the National Day of Prayer observance in Hope Mills. “It’s on our money: In God we trust,’’ Holmes said. “If we don’t trust in God, we’re never going to make it in this life.

“Jesus said to love your neighbor as yourself. If you serve God, you’re going to have love in you. In 1 John it tells us that God is love. I think loving one another brings unity to the faith and understanding that God is all about love. We need to love one another as well.’’ 

Hope Mills Mayor Jackie Warner signed the proclamation recognizing the National Day of Prayer in Hope Mills. She has been a regular participant in the event since she was first elected the town’s mayor.

“The National Day of Prayer in Hope Mills is significant because of the number of denominations that participate,’’ she said. “We have a great turnout of all the churches in the area as far as pastors that are leaders.’’

Traditionally, prayers are offered at the Hope Mills observance for a variety of things, including the town’s mayor and Board of Commissioners, first responders, the military and schools.

“As a leader and as a Christian, I think it is important we take the time and opportunity any time we can to pray and also to be an example for others,’’ Warner said.

“I’m a United Methodist, but the Baptists are there, the Catholics are there, the Episcopalians, Presbyterians, Church of God, we have everything. We’ve had a rabbi before. We represent all religions in Hope Mills, and that’s what I think is important, too.

“I think that show of strength in prayer is one way we can come to some solutions for some of the issues we are facing.’’

Hope Mills adds more options to Food Truck Rodeo

12Food Truck RodeoThe response to the monthly Food Truck Rodeos in the town of Hope Mills has been overwhelming, and that hasn’t been lost on Chancer McLaughlin, the town’s development and planning administrator.

“We did hear the response of the community with the last event,’’ said McLaughlin. The most recent Food Truck Rodeo near Town Hall drew close to 1,400 people, nearly triple the size of the regular crowd at the rodeos.

“The lines were very, very long,’’ McLaughlin said. In some cases, people were waiting upward of 25 to 30 minutes to be served by the six trucks that were on the scene.

At the next Food Truck Rodeo, Thursday, May 2, the town will add three food trucks for a total of nine that will serve the public.

In addition, instead of a DJ playing recorded music, there will be a live jazz band.

The nine trucks at the next rodeo will include some that are familiar to people who have attended the event before, along with a few new ones. Following is a list and brief description of each food truck coming to the rodeo this week.

R Burger is one of Cumberland County’s most popular food trucks, featuring a variety of special hamburgers.

Kona Ice features shaved ice treats. 

32 Degrees is a unique truck specializing in two kinds of ice cream, one for people and one for their dogs. “A lot of people don’t realize puppies can’t eat regular dairy products,’’ McLaughlin said.

Big T’s is the mobile version of the popular food stand at Hope Mills Lake. Big T’s usually features items like funnel cakes, boiled peanuts and lemonade, to name a few.

A Catered Affair by Chef Glenn is another Hope Mills-based truck. Chef Glenn offers items like fried green tomatoes and pineapple chicken stir-fry.

Cedar Creek Fish Farm One word. Catfish.

Nannie’s Famous offers selections like wings and crab legs.

One Nine Drive is a newcomer truck from Aberdeen. It features specialty items like smoked beef brisket, curry chicken bowls and sweet potato wedges.

Rome N Round, also new to the redo and hailing from Aberdeen, features pizza.

“What typically happens at these rodeos is people will hit multiple trucks,’’ McLaughlin said. “If I’ve got to wait 30 minutes in each line, I might not be able to get everything. The easiest way to possibly make the line go faster when you have a much larger crowd is to have more options.’’

McLaughlin is mindful of balancing the need for more options with the need to avoid having too many trucks at one time so that each truck won’t make too little money.

McLaughlin said the town is having discussions about how to handle the potential growth of the Food Truck Rodeo. He said if necessary, it may eventually be moved to the nearby baseball fields at Municipal Park.

In addition to food trucks, the town will also have vendors present to share information about local service and charitable organizations.

As always, the rodeo will include the opportunity to donate nonperishable food items to the ALMSHOUSE.

If anyone would like to be a vendor at a future rodeo, or if there is a food truck the public would like to see come to the rodeo, McLaughlin welcomes suggestions. Reach him via email at cmclaughlin@townofhopemills.com.

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