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MARION, S.C. -- Performing Arts and Science Academy Director Justine Roberts extends her gratitude to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for a grant totaling $158,800 and to the No Kids Hungry $16,700 grant. Roberts said PASA is thankful to area director George Hicks, Jr., state director Dr. Saundra Glover and the Emergency Rural Health Grant (ERHG) for helping to target and reach rural areas that haven’t been served before.“These foundations collectively allowed us to expand our food service program and pr...
MARION, S.C. -- Performing Arts and Science Academy Director Justine Roberts extends her gratitude to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for a grant totaling $158,800 and to the No Kids Hungry $16,700 grant. Roberts said PASA is thankful to area director George Hicks, Jr., state director Dr. Saundra Glover and the Emergency Rural Health Grant (ERHG) for helping to target and reach rural areas that haven’t been served before.
“These foundations collectively allowed us to expand our food service program and provide over 70,000 nutritional meals to the youth throughout South Carolina this summer,” Roberts said. “Not only did these two grants help with food and supplies but it also helped with transportation and fuel expenses for our food service program. A special thank you to the Department of Education and the Summer Break Café (SBC), along with Joann Minder, Monica Mazone and Amber Harrell for helping us make sure no child goes hungry and ensuring equal opportunity and justice for all. This opportunity has also allowed us to create more jobs for our community and partnership with local businesses as well.”
Roberts said she was grateful for Marion Mayor Ashley Brady allowing the use of the Grice’s Recreational Center to provide healthy nutritional meals through SBC. “We also want to thank 21st Century for the grant we were awarded in 2018 for our third, fourth and fifth graders to attend our program for free,” she said. The award will be coming to an end the summer of 2023. PASA is actively seeking funding to continue the STEM and afterschool program free for the youth.
Roberts said vendors and storage providers like Irvin Blackmon IGA of Marion, SYSCO, Performance Foods and sales representative Kevin Williamson, Little Caesar’s Pizza of Marion, Subway in Wal-Mart of Mullins along with Kevin and Stephanie Jenkins and Industrial Solutions Supply helped to make the food service program a success.
“Thank you again to Cheryl Lewis, of the South Carolina Department of Commerce for the STEM bus and we greatly appreciate Brewton Transportation for providing all the vehicles used to transport meals throughout Marion County and surrounding areas this summer,” she said. “And last but certainly not least, we would like to show our appreciation to our PASA Food Service staff for their wonderful efforts to maintain a successful program.”
Roberts said supporters like Marion County Healthcare Foundation, the Duke Energy Foundation, and Department of Juvenile Justice D.J.J. has been able to utilize the funding for its Teen TASC program. The program allowed youth to have another summer program in 2022.
“Thank you to the Marion County Council for allowing us to implement our program in the Zion Community Center directed by Hattie Purnell,” she said. “We would like to give a special thanks to site coordinator Sandra Coombs and to Marion County School District teachers for providing their expertise and instruction in our afterschool program, summer program and tutoring program.”
Roberts said PASA was also provided t-shirts from Sen. Kent Williams. The program’s highlights included the work from the dedicated PASA staff, offering Science, Technology, ELA/Reading, Mathematics and tutoring. The performing arts curriculum includes dance, music and cosmetology.
“Our mission is to enrich lives, providing positive characteristics and love for self and others, in a sense of community outreach using arts and education; improve the health and well-being of our community via access to advocacy and nutritious meals,” Robert said. “Our vision is to provide a safe and fun learning environment, where children can reach their full potential through enriching opportunities.”
Roberts said PASA’s goal is to come together by partnering and collaborating with non-profit and for-profit businesses which allows our community to thrive.
SANTEE COOPER LAKES - Lake Marion is not only the largest lake in South Carolina covering more than 110,000 acres, but it's also known by anglers nationwide as a mecca for big bass, catfish and a variety of smaller fish. Lake Marion has received another designation. AZ Animals has listed the popular recreational lake as having the highest confirmed American Alligator population in the state.Lake Moultrie, Lake Marion's smaller sister lake that covers more than 60,000 acres and comes in as the third-largest lake in South Carolina, was ...
SANTEE COOPER LAKES - Lake Marion is not only the largest lake in South Carolina covering more than 110,000 acres, but it's also known by anglers nationwide as a mecca for big bass, catfish and a variety of smaller fish. Lake Marion has received another designation. AZ Animals has listed the popular recreational lake as having the highest confirmed American Alligator population in the state.
Lake Moultrie, Lake Marion's smaller sister lake that covers more than 60,000 acres and comes in as the third-largest lake in South Carolina, was ranked by AZ Animals as No. 2 in the state for the number of alligators residing within its banks.
According to the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources, there are more than 100,000 alligators calling the state's lakes and waterways home with Lake Marion home to an estimated 100 of those alligators.
Rounding out the top four state areas with lakes in terms of the number of alligators living there are Hilton Head Island at No. 3, and Charleston at No. 4.
Alligators in the state's lakes are most often found thriving in the shallows and swampy areas of the lakes as well as in the lakes' coves and creeks. Between 2016 and 2018, a 700-pound gator and an almost 1,000-pound gator were caught, ranging from 12 to 15 feet, according to AZ Animals. In 2022, Stephen Glenn, Anders Land and Alex Brammer wrangled a 500-pound, 12-foot alligator in the Taw Caw area of Lake Marion, according to The Item archives.
Lake Marion, a freshwater lake, provides a habitat that is comfortable for gators with a climate that never gets cold enough to freeze the lake. It is connected to Sparkleberry Swamp, a popular fishing spot, and home to a significant number of the lake's alligator population.
Lake Marion's shores span five counties, including Clarendon, Sumter, Orangeburg, Calhoun and Berkeley, with sightings of alligators in each of the counties.
Lake Marion is now in the middle of the breeding season for alligators. It's common for single female gators to lay a clutch of 30 to 50 eggs, and this means that the population of alligators within Lake Marion and other state lakes will continue to grow. Lake Marion's abundance of fish also provides the lake's gators with plenty of food to keep them well-fed all year.
In the wild, American Alligators can live between 30 and 50 years with adult male gators reaching lengths of 15 feet.
Travel Safe - Abroad lists three safety tips for swimming in areas where alligators have been sighted:
- Don't swim between dusk and dawn because alligators are more active at night, and splashing can mimic prey;
- Take friends when you swim. With a lot of activity in the water, gators are more likely to keep their distance. Having friends along also ensures that if there is an incident, someone is available to call for help.
- Don't feed the alligators. It is illegal in South Carolina to feed alligators. Feeding alligators can teach the reptiles that it is safe to approach humans for food. Alligators that frequently are fed by humans may get aggressive when the humans don't feed them.
It's also important to notify SCDNR when alligators are seen in areas where they shouldn't be or if you see people feeding them. To report issues with alligators, call SCDNR at 1-800-922-5431.
One area of Lake Marion where you can see alligators from the comfort of your vehicle is the Santee National Wildlife Refuge's Cuddo Unit off Log Jam Road near the John C. Land III Fishing Facility. The Cuddo Unit's 7.5-mile Wildlife Drive features several stops along the route to view an abundance of South Carolina's wildlife, including Cuddo's popular Alligator Alley. Cuddo's visitors can frequently spot gators sunning or swimming. Visitors are asked to never feed the wild animals, including gators.
Applications for S.C. Alligator Lottery now being accepted
The South Carolina Department of Natural Resources' Alligator Lottery is now underway and lasts until 5 p.m. July 15.
A $10 nonrefundable application fee is required to apply. A randomized computer drawing based on a preference point system will determine the selection of hunters.
The 2023 public alligator season will begin at noon Sept. 9 and end at noon Oct. 14. If your entry is chosen, the tag fees are $100. Additional fees apply to nonresident hunters. Applicants will be notified by email of their selection status after the drawing has been completed. Applicants can also check their status online any time after the drawing. By law, the fees that are collected through the lottery are used to support the Alligator Management Program's research and management activities and for conservation of the American Alligator in South Carolina.
To apply for the alligator hunts, for more information on the lottery and for information on any changes and updates to the program, check the SCDNR website at https://bit.ly/3oKGltm.
For questions or assistance with applying, contact Emily Kearse at (803) 734-3887 or firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Trista Bishop at (803) 734-3892 or email@example.com.
The four-person crew on a Black Hawk helicopter from McEntire Joint National Guard Base in Hopkins was on a training mission over Lake Marion when an osprey shattered the windshield in early June, the National Guard reported Wednesday.“Bird!” Chief Warrant Officer 2 Brandon Painter said just before impact.In what a news release called a “heart-stopping moment,” the split-second warning allowed the commanding pilot, Chief Warrant Officer 4 Henry Wallace, the time to make the copter climb.Wallace is...
The four-person crew on a Black Hawk helicopter from McEntire Joint National Guard Base in Hopkins was on a training mission over Lake Marion when an osprey shattered the windshield in early June, the National Guard reported Wednesday.
“Bird!” Chief Warrant Officer 2 Brandon Painter said just before impact.
In what a news release called a “heart-stopping moment,” the split-second warning allowed the commanding pilot, Chief Warrant Officer 4 Henry Wallace, the time to make the copter climb.
Wallace is a UH-60 standardization pilot with A Company, 1st Battalion, 111th Aviation Regiment and was evaluating Painter on low-level combat maneuvers and a mock hurricane response.
“There is no real emergency printed for this type of scenario,” Wallace said. “However, our first instinct was to look at the aircraft instruments. I was on the flight controls and as a crew, we determined we still had control.”
The news release described a grisly scene with the dead bird lodged in the shattered window.
“As I flew the aircraft, I had Mr. Painter monitor the instruments and cautions panel for any potential lights. Crew chiefs were busy scanning for nearby landing locations just in case the situation worsened as well as monitored our instruments,” Wallace said.
He drew on the cohesiveness of the crew, which had just returned from a year-long deployment to Sinai.
“We had worked well together and understood each other’s capabilities,” he said.
It could have been much worse. Crew members had on their Aviation Life Support Equipment and the visors on their helmets were down.
“If the pilot had not had his visor in the down position, he most likely would have suffered severe injury to his eyes and possibly lost control of the aircraft,” said Army Col. John McElveen, commander of the South Carolina National Guard’s 59th Aviation Troop Command.
In the end, the crew landed safely at a small airport about 10 miles away.
Wallace offered this advice to aviators.
“Keep the critical and creative thinking in the process and not only talk about these things in the formations but go out, train, and don’t be afraid to fail,” he said. “That way, when something as simple as a bird strike or something more critical or catastrophic does happen, training takes over.”
MARION, S.C. (WBTW) — A Canadian company plans to relocate its headquarters to Marion County, bringing a $1.19 million investment and 27 new jobs to the area.Normont Motion Technology is a leading industrial engineering company currently based in Quebec, Canada, according to a news release from South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster’s office.The company is leasing a facility at 520 Highway 76 in Marion for its new corporate headquarters and its head U.S. regional office. The facility will include the company’s des...
MARION, S.C. (WBTW) — A Canadian company plans to relocate its headquarters to Marion County, bringing a $1.19 million investment and 27 new jobs to the area.
Normont Motion Technology is a leading industrial engineering company currently based in Quebec, Canada, according to a news release from South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster’s office.
The company is leasing a facility at 520 Highway 76 in Marion for its new corporate headquarters and its head U.S. regional office. The facility will include the company’s design, manufacturing, and logistics and warehousing operations.
We are proud to welcome Normont Motion Technology, Inc. to South Carolina, McMaster said. “Their investment into Marion County will not only help drive innovation but also bring new economic opportunities for the state and our people. We look forward to seeing their continued success here in South Carolina.”
The company manufactures industrial, automotive and aerospace gas springs and shock absorber solutions and delivers them to customers around the world. In addition to gas springs, the company produces electromechanical lift systems, dampers and hardware components, serving the automotive, heavy truck and mechanical industries.
“Our decision to move to Marion was an easy one, Normont’s president, John Struthers, said. “Marion has an experienced workforce, the county has been excellent to work with, and Marion’s location, so close to I-95, simplifies our logistics. The success of our Marion facility is critical to our future growth. I am looking forward to expanding and Normont being part of the Marion community for years to come.”
Marion County leaders are excited to have the company operating in the county.
“We are pleased to welcome Normont to Marion County and thank Normont for choosing to relocate its corporate headquarters here, County Council Chairman John Q. Atkinson said. “As the momentum continues to build toward the EV sector in S.C., Marion County is excited to not only see another auto sector industry choose our county but also see that our investment into the future is a step in the right direction. We are excited to have Normont and look forward to the future of Marion County!”
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Dennis Bright is a digital producer at News13. Dennis is a West Virginia native and graduate of Marshall University. He has won copyediting and journalism awards in West Virginia and Ohio. Follow Dennis on Twitter and read more of his work here.
Spectrum Internet® with Starting Speeds of 300 Mbps Now Available to More Than 4,400 Homes and Small BusinessesNetwork Buildout is Part of Spectrum’s $5 Billion, Multiyear Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) Investment in Rural BroadbandCOLUMBIA, S.C. — Spectrum today announced the launch of Spectrum Internet, Mobile, TV and Voice services to more than 4,400 homes and small businesses in Marion County, S.C. Spectrum’s newly constructed fiber-optic network buildo...
Spectrum Internet® with Starting Speeds of 300 Mbps Now Available to More Than 4,400 Homes and Small Businesses
Network Buildout is Part of Spectrum’s $5 Billion, Multiyear Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) Investment in Rural Broadband
COLUMBIA, S.C. — Spectrum today announced the launch of Spectrum Internet, Mobile, TV and Voice services to more than 4,400 homes and small businesses in Marion County, S.C. Spectrum’s newly constructed fiber-optic network buildout in Marion County is part of the company’s approximately $5 billion RDOF-related investment in unserved rural communities, which includes $1 billion won in the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) RDOF auction. The company’s RDOF expansion will provide broadband access to approximately 1 million customer locations as estimated by the FCC across 24 states in the coming years.
“Spectrum is bringing gigabit broadband to unserved communities across America through RDOF,” said Jonathan Holt, Vice President of Construction at Spectrum. “Our investment is making it possible to deliver the high-value broadband, mobile, TV and voice services now available in Marion County. We are providing local residents and small businesses superior connectivity at highly competitive prices, backed by a team of skilled local technicians and U.S.-based customer service.”
Spectrum Internet delivers speeds up to 1 Gbps and Advanced WiFi for both residential customers and small business clients, featuring starting speeds of 300 Mbps, with no modem fees, data caps or contracts. Spectrum Business Internet offers its clients plans with starting download speeds of 300 Mbps, with 600 Mbps and 1 Gbps options.
“Now more than ever, it is important for all Americans — from students to the working class to our senior citizens — to have access to a fast, reliable internet connection,” said U.S. Rep. Russell Fry. “Thanks to broadband, families are able to stay connected, and businesses have the connectivity they need to thrive. I applaud Spectrum's investment to provide broadband services in parts of the Grand Strand and Pee Dee in South Carolina's Seventh District, expanding connectivity in rural areas.”
Spectrum Internet delivers the fastest internet and WiFi download speeds in the nation*, and also exceeded advertised download and upload speeds for all tiers measured — even during peak weeknight usage between 7 and 11 p.m. — according to the FCC’s most recent “Measuring Broadband America Fixed Broadband Report” issued in January 2023.
“I have been a longtime advocate of expanding high-speed broadband access to rural and unserved parts of the state,” added state Sen. Kent Williams. “Spectrum’s announcement today is cause for celebration for residents in Marion County, who now have access to reliable internet connectivity with affordability options like the Affordable Connectivity Program.”
Spectrum also was a day one participant in the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP), which makes quality, high-speed internet service available at a low — or even at no — cost to eligible families in financial need. All Spectrum Internet plans are eligible for ACP credits, and because customers are not locked into a contract, families can always choose the right broadband plan to meet their changing needs.
Along with multiple broadband options, Spectrum services now available also include Spectrum Mobile™ and Spectrum TV®. Spectrum Mobile is the nation’s fastest-growing mobile provider** and combines with Spectrum Internet and Advanced Home WiFi to provide seamless connectivity inside and outside the home. Spectrum Mobile provides customers access to nationwide 5G at great value, with Unlimited lines starting at $29.99 a month, as well as By the Gig options.
Spectrum TV offers more than 270 HD channels and access to 85,000 On Demand movies and shows. Using the Spectrum TV App — the highest-rated pay TV streaming app in the U.S.*** — viewers can stream content across a growing number of platforms, including iOS and Android mobile devices, Xbox One, Kindle Fire, Samsung Smart TVs, Apple TV, Google Chromecast, Roku, XUMO TVs and PCs.
Local residents and business owners should visit spectrumruralexpansion.com to learn more about when their home or business may be able to receive Spectrum services.
* Based on analysis by Ookla® of Speedtest Intelligence® data U.S. median fixed download speeds for Q1 2023. Ookla trademarks used under license and reprinted with permission.
** Based on year end 2022 subscriber data among top 3 carriers.
***iOS (App Store) and Android (Google Play) average ratings as of April 1, 2023. Apps must have at least 150k reviews through combination of iOS & Android store reviews as of April 1, 2023.
Spectrum is a suite of advanced communications services offered by Charter Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ:CHTR), a leading broadband connectivity company and cable operator serving more than 32 million customers in 41 states. Over an advanced communications network, the company offers a full range of state-of-the-art residential and business services including Spectrum Internet®, TV, Mobile and Voice.
For small and medium-sized companies, Spectrum Business® delivers the same suite of broadband products and services coupled with special features and applications to enhance productivity, while for larger businesses and government entities, Spectrum Enterprise provides highly customized, fiber-based solutions. Spectrum Reach® delivers tailored advertising and production for the modern media landscape. The company also distributes award-winning news coverage and sports programming to its customers through Spectrum Networks. More information about Charter can be found at corporate.charter.com.