News Briefs

Posted 8/30/19


News BriefS

Wren Memorial Library opening delayed

SILER CITY — It will take longer than anticipated to complete necessary repairs of the Wren Memorial Library Branch in Siler …

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News Briefs

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News BriefS

Wren Memorial Library opening delayed

SILER CITY — It will take longer than anticipated to complete necessary repairs of the Wren Memorial Library Branch in Siler City. The construction process has experienced challenges due to weather.

The library closed on July 29 to undergo extensive maintenance work in the ceiling and roof areas. The targeted reopening date was August 26.

The public can visit either the Chatham Community Library in Pittsboro or Goldston branch for library services.

An update on the anticipated reopening will be provided in the coming days.

NCDMV online services and football trains

RALEIGH — The following are highlights from this week at the N.C. Department of Transportation. The stories below are also featured in NCDOT Now, the department’s weekly newscast.

Save time at the NCDMV

The last two weeks of August can be the busiest at the NCDMV, so here are some things to know before you go.

Check to see if your service can be completed online at You don’t need an office visit to renew a driver license or vehicle registration, order a duplicate license or ID, or change your address. If you need to visit a DMV office, make sure you have all the proper documentation to complete your business before making the trip.

Finally, since REAL ID applications must be completed in-person, the Division of Motor Vehicles recommends you wait until after the summer peak season to get one. However, before you make an appointment, go online to determine if getting a REAL ID makes sense for you.

— CN+R Staff Reports

News BriefS

Chatham Farms invited to apply for Conservation Cost Share Grants

PITTSBORO — The Chatham Soil and Water Conservation District is taking applications from agricultural operations for both the Agricultural Cost Share Program and the Agriculture Water Resources Assistance Program.

The Agricultural Cost Share Program helps agricultural operations install best management practices (BMPs) that address sediment or nutrient losses, animal waste management, agrichemical pollution prevention or stream protection. Examples of BMPs include livestock exclusion systems to fence livestock from surface waters; manure dry stacks and composters for nutrient management; as well as long-term no till, cover crops, waterways and terraces for sediment and erosion management on cropland.

The Soil and Water Conservation District is also accepting applications for the Agricultural Water Resources Assistance Program, which assists farm operations with insufficient water sources for irrigation for cropland, nurseries or livestock. Eligible projects include new pond construction, pond dam repair or retrofit, pond sediment removal, streamside pick-up, conservation irrigation conversion, micro-irrigation and water supply wells.

The district has limited funding available. All applications will be ranked within the county and possibly within the region. Funding will be provided to the highest priority needs.

Cost share awards may amount to 75 percent of the total installation costs, with the applicant required to cover the difference. Funds are provided by N.C. Division of Soil and Water Conservation through the N.C. Department of Agricultural and Consumer Services.

Eligible applicants for these programs must operate a bona fide farm, as described by NC GS153A-340(b)(2), and have been in production for three or more years.

Please call Kyle Watkins at 919-545-8353 regarding eligibility and to set up a farm visit to discuss best management practices and conservation planning.

Chatham County 4-Her inducted into the NC 4-H Honor Club

PITTSBORO — Molly Carlson, a former Chatham County resident, has been inducted into the NC 4-H Honor Club.

Each year at NC 4-H Congress, 4-Hers from across the state are inducted into the NC 4-H Honor Club, awarded to 4-H’ers who have demonstrated outstanding leadership and citizenship throughout their 4-H career.

According to the NC 4-H Honor Club webpage, “the total number of applicants inducted into the NC 4-H Honor Club shall be limited to 0.5 percent of the current enrollment of NC 4-H members.”

Carlson was inducted on July 20. She has an extensive background in 4-H, participating in a number of 4-H programs at the county, district, state and national level. She has participated in 4-H Citizenship Focus, 4-H YouthVoice in both Chatham and Orange Counties, and won first place and Best in Show at NC State Fair for her Junior Honey entries. In addition, Carlson has served as a Wallace Carver Fellowship Delegate with the USDA, a Chatham County 4-H Electric Congress Delegate, and a NC Beekeepers Association Committee member.

— CN+R Staff Reports

Chatham County 4-H horsekateer wins 4th place at Southern Regional Competition

PERRY, Georgia — On Aug. 1, Chatham County 4-H member Taylor Cloer, 18, competed in the Southern Regional Education Contest. Teams and individuals from 13 different states competed in Horse Judging, Horsebowl, Hippology and Communications events.

Cloer’s Hippology team placed 4th in Written Exam and Slides, 4th in Judging, and 5th Overall. Individually, she placed 8th in Written Exam and Slides, 9th in Judging, and 10th Overall High Individual. In addition, she made the NC National Hippology team so she will be competing at AQHA Congress in October and 4-H Eastern Nationals in November.

Cloer has been in the Chatham County 4-H Horsekateer group for fiev years. She will be attending N.C. State and studying animal science.

Back to School Safety: Know the rules of the road

RALEIGH — August is Back to School Safety Month, and North Carolina Insurance Commissioner Mike Causey, who also serves as Chair of Safe Kids N.C., reminds students, parents, and motorists to use extra caution as students walk, drive, or ride the bus to school.

“With children going back to school, our roads and crosswalks will be much more crowded so it’s important that everyone compensates by using more caution,” Commissioner Causey noted. “It only takes one unsafe move to cause a tragic injury or death to one of our precious children.”

While students on traditional calendars will go back to school on Aug. 26, students at year-round schools have already started boarding buses and have headed back to class.

On a typical day, more than 14,000 school buses carrying nearly 800,000 students operate on North Carolina roads. Passing a stopped school bus can result in the motorist adding four insurance points and seeing an 80 percent increase in auto insurance premiums.

Commissioner Causey encouraged all motorists to watch for children walking to school or waiting by the roadside for a school bus. And he advised motorists to understand the rules of the road when a school bus is stopped picking up passengers.

Commissioner Causey also offered National Safety Council tips as students and teachers head back to school.

For pedestrians:

• Walk on the sidewalk. If there is no sidewalk and you must walk in the street or road, walk facing traffic.

• Before crossing the street, stop and look left, right and left again to see if cars are coming.

• Never dart out in front of a parked car.

• Parents: Practice walking to school with your child, crossing streets or crosswalks when available.

• Never walk while texting or talking on the phone.

• Do not walk while using headphones.

For bike riders:

• Always wear a helmet that is fitted and secured properly.

• Children need to know the rules of the road: Ride single file on the right side of the road, come to a complete stop before crossing the street and walk the bike across.

• Watch for opening car doors and other hazards.

• Use hand signals when turning.

• Wear bright-colored clothing.

For bus riders:

• Teach children the proper way to get on and off the bus.

• Line up six feet away from the curb as the bus approaches.

• If seat belts are available, buckle up.

• Wait for the bus to stop completely before standing.

• If you must cross the road, walk at least 10 feet in front of the bus.

For motorists, in addition to obeying the stopped school bus law:

• Don’t block crosswalks.

• Yield to pedestrians in crosswalks and take extra precaution in school zones.

• Never pass a vehicle stopped for pedestrians.

• Stop far enough back from a school bus to allow children room to safely enter and exit the bus. The area 10 feet around a school bus is the most dangerous for children.

For more information on how to keep children safe during Back to School Safety Month or throughout the year, visit the website

­— CN + R staff reports

Chatham author to discuss ‘Tweakings and Tappings’ book

PITTSBORO — Chatham County author Suzanne Wachs Jones will sign and discuss her book “Tweaking and Tappings: When God Gets My Attention” at several events in the coming weeks.

For Wachs Jones, a native of Chatham County and a UNC-Chapel Hill alumnus, her writing is a family affair. She, her three children and her husband live in a country farm house near Pittsboro that was her husband’s childhood home. Her 6-year-old daughter, Elizabeth, provided the art for the cover of her book and the whole family rallies around “mom” to give her time to write.

“It’s a wonderful place and we love our family time,” Wachs Jones says.

In her book, she shares times in which God has spoken to her, often in the chaos of day-to-day living. From bad summer haircuts to the faith in a child’s prayers or to missing a flu shot, she shares stories of when God has gotten her attention through the good and the bad of everyday life.

She writes: “I began writing these pieces a little over three years ago. They are written in a very informal style, as if I am speaking. There are sentence fragments, but that is on purpose. The first one was ‘My Little Girl.’ I tried to write when I felt God was showing me something new or something I had missed, teaching me a lesson, or when a particular Scripture passage really stood out to me. Writing helped me to understand what He was trying to teach me. Most of these pieces involve my children in some way. I think God helps me see things through my children as much as through anyone or anything else. Sometimes God speaks in the little things of life. I hope that these little stories will make you smile, and perhaps stop and think.”

Signings include:

• Wednesday, September 4th from 11 a.m. to noon noon at Persnickety Books, 347 S. Main Street, downtown Burlington

• Saturday, September 14th from 3 - 4:30 pm, at the Burlington Artists League Gallery in the Holly Hill Mall, Huffman Mill Rd., Burlington.

• Saturday, November 2nd from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Christmas Magic Show, Silk Hope Community Building, 4221 Silk Hope Rd., Siler City.

Her books are available at The Carpenter’s Shop in Sanford, the Burlington Artists League Gallery and Persnickety Books in downtown Burlington, and

For more information, contact her at 919-548-2158 or

2019-20 N.C. transportation map is available

RALEIGH – The 2019-20 North Carolina State Transportation Map is now available free of charge.

The map is funded and produced by the N.C. Dept. of Transportation. It is distributed by VisitNC, a unit of the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina.

The cover of the new map features North Carolina’s seasonal scenery, including the canopy of trees at the top of Cataloochee Ranch Mountain in the fall and waves crashing on the beach near Surf City.

The new map can be ordered online at or by calling 1-800-847-4862 (VISIT NC). Maps are also available at welcome centers, rest areas and NCDOT offices across the state.

First published in 1916 and updated biennially, the state map is NCDOT’s most popular publication, with 1.25 million copies in this year’s initial printing.

North Carolina has one of the largest highway systems in the nation and the new map details the more than 106,975 miles of public roads that span the state. That includes nearly 80,000 miles of state-maintained roads.

­— CN + R staff reports

New Hope Valley Railway plans Labor Day weekend event

BONSAL — Add an extra bit of enjoyment to your Labor Day weekend with a pleasant ride through the pines Aug. 31 on the New Hope Valley Railway.

The railway will be holding a Brew ‘n’ Choo event at its Bonsal yard to benefit the repair and restoration of one of its diesel locomotives.

Departure times are 2:30, 4, 5:30 and 7 p.m. Tickets may be purchased on line at Triangle Train. Com or at the Bonsal ticket office. The food truck of Chick-N-Que will be on hand as well as the Fortnight Brewing Co. of Cary. Food and beverages are not included in the ticket price.

Bonsal is located on Old US 1 west of Apex near the Shearon Harris power plant. Bonsal is less than an hour’s drive from many points in the Triangle region.

The North Carolina Railway Museum, operators of the railway, is an all-volunteer, nonprofit corporation. Its mission is the preservation of railroad history.

Football fans may take the train

Carolina Panthers fans, are you tired of sitting in traffic and paying for parking? Sit back, relax and let NC By Train get you to Charlotte for 1 p.m. football games this season.

2019 Season 1 p.m. games:

• Sept. 8: Los Angeles Rams

• Oct. 6: Jacksonville Jaguars

• Nov. 3: Tennessee Titans

• Nov. 17: Atlanta Falcons

• Dec. 1: Washington Redskins

• Dec. 15: Seattle Seahawks

• Dec. 29: New Orleans Saints

Fans can board train 73 at any of the seven stations between Raleigh and Charlotte to arrive at 9:40 a.m. and later return on train 78 departing at 7 p.m. While on board, ask for a Transit Pass to easily travel from the Charlotte train station to the Transportation Center before and after the game.

Visit to get your tickets.

For more information about NCDOT Now, contact the NCDOT Communications Office at (919) 707-2660. Additional news stories from throughout the week can be found on

Chatham County 4-H’ers achieve success at 4-H state presentations

PITTSBORO – Every summer 4-H members from across North Carolina convene in Raleigh to participate in the 4-H State Presentations competition held at North Carolina State University. At this year’s event, there were over 365 presenters representing approximately eighty counties.

In order to reach the state competition, each 4-H member must receive a gold or silver, depending on the category and age group, at the district competition. In preparation for presentations, participants select a topic of interest that falls into one of several categories. The categories include animal science, citizenship and civic education, communication and expressive art, family and consumer science, environmental science, healthy lifestyles, personal development, and science and technology. 4-H presentations helps individuals build confidence and learn the skill of public speaking, which is a terrifying experience for many people.

This year, we had five 4-H members, from the Clover Creators 4-H Club located in Siler City, compete in the district competition, and all five were invited to participate in the state competition. However, only four were able to compete due to a scheduling conflict. For three of the four competitors, this was their first time participating in a state 4-H competition, which is a big accomplishment in itself. Abigail Molina-Bacho and Avery Wright both competed in the environmental science category, and each won gold for their respective age group. Zva Rodriguez competed in the citizenship and civic education category, winning silver for her age group. Santos Vazquez-Quiquiuix competed in the environmental science category, and finished in fourth place.


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