Friday, Sept. 29th
Art Festival, Food Truck Championship Highlight Weekend
Chickasha's population is expected to at least double will all the weekend activities that will be going on. It all starts today with the opening of the 15th annual Rock Island Arts Festival. The 400 and 500 blocks of Chickasha Avenue are blocked off for the next three days as nearly 100 artisans and crafters will display their talent and have numerous items for sale. The festival is hosted by the Chickasha Area Arts Council. The festival will have food trucks and live music all three days, with the stage for events set up at the intersection of 6th and Chickasha Avenue near the Grady County DAV Center. There kids activities across the street from the DAV center with inflatables and a sand pile.
Oklahoma Food Truck Championship
Saturday will be the big day, with the spotlight on the Oklahoma Food Truck Championship. More than 30 food trucks are competing for some $10,000 in cash prizes. Barbecue, Mexican food, perhaps international cuisine and dessert trucks will be featured. That event will take up space on Chickasha Avenue from the Leg Lamp to 4th Street, with live music tomorrow afternoon with featured bands being The Imaginaries and Dollar 98. Also tomorrow, some 200 bike riders are signed up for the Rock Island Ride. Dozens of people will also take part in a domestic violence awareness campaign, called the Together We Heel walk. Also this weekend, the Muscle Car Ranch hosts its annual Twister Fest concert, which will feature some 50 bands on five stages. that event opens this afternoon and runs through Sunday.
Anadarko Receives Grant to Help Revitalize Downtown
The City of Anadarko has received a grant to create a downtown amphitheater. Anadarko is one of just 25 communities across the country which received Hometown grants from T-Mobile. It's a $50,000 grant which will build the outdoor amphitheater at the site where the former Miller Theatre was located. The theater had to been torn down a couple of years ago. It will be called the Miller Theatre Park and will include a raised stage, concession stand with mural which will honor the city's rich Native American history, an outdoor greenspace with seating and restrooms. Anadarko residents are invited to a special celebration announcing the grant which will be held by T-Mobile and city officials at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 3rd at 2nd and West Main Street.
Crane-Truck Driver Hospitalized After Rollover
A crane truck driver is hospitalized after suffering a medical problem while driving in Blanchard. 56-year old David Sturm of Oklahoma City was last in fair condition. The accident happened just before 6:00 p.m. last night on 290th Street just east of Meridian. The highway patrol reported that Sturm initially ran off the street and hit a mail box, then re-entered the roadway where the truck rolled 3/4 of a turn and blocked both lanes for an undetermined amount of time.
Earthquakes Blamed on Drilling Activity
A recent swarm of earthquakes in the Duncan and Velma area are believed to be linked to recent oil drilling and fracking. One of the strongest earthquakes was a 3.7 tremor registered by the Oklahoma Geological Survey. The website OK Energy Today cites a report from the Norman Transcript that the operator, Continental Resources, has gone off-line for the time being but that after-shocks could impact the area over the next several days.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $91.71 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $95.38.
Natural gas is $2.94 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,889 and silver $23.29.
A memorial service for Cheryl Whitmire, 73, of Chickasha will be held by the family at a later date. She was a waitress and worked at Wal-Mart. Arrangements are with Ferguson Funeral Home.
Thursday, Sept. 28th
Elementary Student Issues 'Threat' on School Bus
Classes are being held as scheduled at Ninnekah schools today after a possible threat may have been made by an elementary student. The Grady County Sheriff's Office said a 4th grade student made a threat on a school bus yesterday afternoon. A post on the sheriff's office Facebook page indicated that Ninnekah school administrators handled the incident. The post was attributed to Sheriff Gary Boggess who indicated that at no time were any students in harm's way and that Ninnekah school officials don't take any threat lightly and that the situation would be taken care of quickly to keep kids safe.
Fire Damages Anadarko Apartments
A fire at an Anadarko apartment complex Tuesday night caused hundreds of thousands of dollars in damage and left about a dozen people without homes. The blaze erupted at the Landmark Apartments at West 5th Street and Oklahoma Avenue about 8:30 p.m. Tuesday. Fortunately nobody was hurt. Anadarko firefighters summoned help from Gracemont, Verden, and Chickasha fire departments and crews were on the scene for about five hours. Anadarko Fire Chief Greg Stone estimated damage at $775,000. Stone said it appeared that an electrical short in the attic of one of the apartments sparked the blaze. Many of the families displaced were able to stay with other family members. He said the Anadarko First Baptist Church, The Caddo and Delaware Nations, and the Red Cross helped to provide some relief to the displaced residents.
Two Hurt in Turnpike Crash
Two people were taken to the hospital following a multi-vehicle crash on the H.E. Bailey Turnpike. The accident happened in the eastbound lanes of the turnpike around mile marker 92 about 7:00 a.m. Tuesday. The highway patrol reports that a pickup was pulling a vehicle on a car dolly well below the minimum speed limit. A vehicle came up from behind and rear-ended the vehicle being towed. The names of those involved in the crash were not released. The OHP said their injuries were not life-threatening. The crash did move one of the concrete barriers in the median into a westbound lane of traffic. The highway was closed for three hours.
Onward Chickasha Survey Continues
Chickasha residents have a few more days to provide feedback on what they'd like the city to look like in the future. The Onward Chickasha project is an 18-month effort to provide ideas that will take the city into the middle part of the century. Landon Jones is with Guernsey and Associates, an Oklahoma City firm hired to conduct the survey. He said the survey includes-
The last day to provide input on this segment is Friday, Oct. 6th. Residents can go to the website www.onwardchickasha.org and it takes about 20 minutes. Jones said that Guernsey representatives will have a booth at the Oklahoma Food Truck championship on Saturday to help get info out.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $93.68 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $96.55.
Natural gas is $2.76 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,892 and silver is $22.81.
A memorial service for Susan White, 61, of Chickasha will be held at 10:00 a.m. Friday, Sept. 29th at College Heights Baptist Church. She was a CNA and worked with the Chickasha Opportunity Workshop. Arrangements are with Ferguson Funeral Home.
A memorial service for Precious Savoie, 23, of Lawton will be held at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 30th at Friendship Pentecostal Holiness Church in Lawton. Arrangements are with Brown-Thomas Funeral Home.
Wednesday, Sept. 27th
Child Abuse Suspect Faces Charges in Two Counties
A suspect wanted in connection with a child abuse investigation is booked into the Grady County Jail. 45-year old Jason Leroy Slape of Oklahoma City was moved from the Mayes County Jail in northeastern Oklahoma to Chickasha earlier this week. He’s facing a felony charge of child abuse by injury which was filed in Grady County District Court last December. At his initial court appearance yesterday a judge set bond at $40,000. No details about the investigation were immediately available. Slape is facing charges of assault and battery in Mayes County.
Rock Island Weekend About to Get Underway
The City of Chickasha is getting ready for an influx of thousands of visitors this weekend. The Rock Island Weekend as it is called will include the 15th annual Rock Island Arts Festival hosted by the Chickasha Area Arts Council. Nearly 100 vendors will line a couple of blocks in downtown Chickasha for three days. Sue Getman with the arts council said says the vendors will be set up in the 400 and 500 blocks of Chickasha Avenue.
The Arts Festival opens Friday and runs through Sunday and there will be live music and food trucks all three days.
Food Truck Championship
A big event Saturday will be the Oklahoma Food Truck Championship. About 30 food trucks will be competing for $10,000 in cash prizes. It will take place along Chickasha Avenue from the Leg Lamp to 4th Street and will also have live music Saturday afternoon and evening.
Rock Island Ride
Saturday morning, the Rock Island Ride bicycle tour is anticipating more than 200 riders with courses ranging from 10 to 60 miles.
Together We Heel Walk
Also Saturday morning is the Together We Heel Walk against domestic violence for the Intervention and Crisis Advocacy Network.
National Horse Show
A big event at the Grady County Fairgrounds is already underway. The National Welsh Pony and Cob Show runs through Sunday.
There is also live music at Chickasha's Muscle Car Ranch which is hosting its 9th annual Twisterfest. That also runs Friday, Saturday, and Sunday with more than 50 bands playing on five stages throughout the ranch. An added attraction this year is professional wrestling which will have two shows Saturday night.
USAO Prof Puts Uses Grant for Public Art
A USAO professor receives a community-based grant to help with her work. Jordan Vinyard is the dean of the university’s School of Visual and Performing Arts. She was awarded a $10,000 grant from the Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition - which was made possible by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Vinyard's project is called ’This Little Piggy Has Meaning, This Little Piggy has None’ and consists of kinetic sculptures that playfully address how we define community values. There are eight fabricated piggy banks which can be found on the USAO campus and throughout the community.
Anadarko Library to Host Chocolate Celebration
The Anadarko Community Library is getting ready to celebrate all things chocolate. The library and Friends of the Library will host their annual chocolate celebration next week. There will be thousands of servings of chocolate goodies to choose from. Tickets are $7 each which allows the purchaser to select six servings of chocolate per ticket. Tickets can be purchased in advance or at the door. There will also be an auction of chocolate desserts. The chocolate celebration is Tuesday, Oct. 3rd from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. and the auction will begin about 6:00 p.m.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $90.39 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $93.96.
Natural gas is $2.65 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,912 and silver is $23.02.
Tuesday, Sept. 26th
Study Shows County Deputies are Poorly Paid
A recent study shows that county sheriff's offices are losing deputies because of low wages. State Senator Darrell Weaver of Moore held an interim study on the issue at the state capital yesterday. One sheriff said his budget only allows him to pay jailers, dispatchers, and other essential employees about $10 an hour - and deputies only slightly above that. Weaver says that's not enough for these dangerous and taxing jobs. County sheriffs say they are losing staff to cities and tribal and state agencies that are able to pay higher salaries. Also taking part in yesterday's study were sheriffs and lawmakers from Texas who virtually shared ideas on what has helped them raise pay and reduce turnover. Weaver said public safety should always be a top priority of government at any level. He said he's confident that lawmakers can come up with sensible solutions.
Interim Study Set to Better Help Domestic Violence Victims
Finding ways to better help victims of domestic violence will be the subject of an interim study at the state capital next week. State Rep. Ross Ford of Tulsa, a former police officer, will hold the study with the House Judiciary Committee. Ford said he also wants to address the generational impact of domestic violence. He said he'd like to look at early-intervention programs that would help victims leave their attackers. Ford said it will be a timely discussion since recent reports show Oklahoma leads the nation in domestic violence for both men and women and that the state is third in the country for the number of women killed by their significant others. The hearing will be held Wednesday, Oct. 4th at 9:30 a.m. in Room 450 at the state capital.
Kiowa Tribal Leaders Look to Make Hobart a 'Smart City'
We reported last week that leaders of the Kiowa Tribe are reaching out to other tribes in an attempt to develop a plan to improve internet service to tribal members. The Kiowas are also working with the City of Hobart to try and make that community a Smart City. Kiowa Tribal Chairman Lawrence Spottedbird has invited the mayor of Pharr, Texas to Hobart to discuss that community's transformation from one of the worst-connected cities of its size -- to one where it built a majority of its own high-speed broadband network and launched and manage WiFi service in just 18 months. Pharr, Texas Mayor Ambrosio Hernandez will meet with Hobart and Kiowa Tribe officials tomorrow to talk about creating and implementing broadband infrastructure which would provide the foundation to develop employment opportunities as well as opportunities for schools, residents, and small businesses.
Senior Citizen Gored By Longhorn
A 75-year old man visiting the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge was recently gored by a longhorn. The unidentified man will be OK as officials reported his injuries were not life-threatening. KSWO-TV reports the man was in the refuge listening to elks bugling and may have gotten a little too close to the animal. Refuge officials remind visitors that when they are out in nature to stay a good distance away from wildlife. One basic guideline is that if you can't cover up the animal with your thumb raised on an outstretched arm - you are probably too close.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $89.68 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $93.29.
Natural gas is $2.64 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,930 and silver is $23.29.
Clyde ‘Butch’ Robertson
A memorial service for ‘Butch’ Robertson, 69, of Verden will be held at 1:00 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 28th at Ferguson Funeral Home. He served as the mayor of Verden and also worked for the town and also worked for the City of Chickasha.
A memorial service for Lydia Roberston, 61, of Chickasha will be held at a later date. Arrangements are with Ferguson Funeral Home.
Monday, Sept. 25th
OSBI to Assist with Investigation of Missing Chickasha Man
Chickasha police have called in the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation (OSBI) to help with the investigation of a missing man. 46-year old Richard Clarence Houston has not been seen for more than three weeks. He was last seen Aug. 31st near the Chickasha post office. Authorities have not released a lot of information about Houston other than his physical description. He's Caucasian, 5’-5” tall, weighs about 300 pounds, has short brown hair, a mustache and goatee, and his right leg has been amputated below the knee. A photo of Houston is posted on the police department's Facebook page. Anyone with information is asked to contact Chickasha police by calling 405-222-6050.
Two Hospitalized After Crash with Farm Equipment
Two people are hospitalized after their car rear-ends a tractor pulling some farm equipment. 75-year old Glen Edwards and 73-year old Jeremy Edwards - both of Ft. Cobb - were taken to an Oklahoma City hospital where they were admitted in stable condition. The driver of the tractor, 70-year old John Wyatt of Hydro, was not hurt. The accident happened just after 3 o'clock Saturday afternoon north of Eakly. The trooper investigating the accident said the driver of the car, Glen Edwards, was distracted when he looked at his GPS just before the accident occurred.
OHP Continues Probe of Double-Fatality Accident
The highway patrol is continuing its investigation of a double-fatality accident involving two semis and a small SUV that happened Saturday evening. The crash claimed the lives of 60-year old Gracielia Hawkins and 61-year old Maria Daniel both of Weatherford who were in a Kia Soul. The accident happened just before 6 p.m. Saturday near mile marker 109 on I-40 in Canadian County which is close to Geary. Neither truck driver was seriously hurt. One of them was 68-year old Cordele Brandon of Chickasha who was treated and released at the scene.
Assistant Chix City Manager Named 'Woman of the Year'
A big honor for a City of Chickasha employee. Assistant City Manager and Community Development Director Rachel Bernish was named Woman of the Year at the annual conference of the Oklahoma Municipal League last week. Bernish won the award for communities with populations over 5,000 residents. In a press release announcing the award, Municipal League executive director Mike Fina said Bernish’s work modernized municipal processes and has led to better relationships between citizens and city hall. Chickasha City Manager Keith Johnson calls Bernish a transformative, dynamic leader who daily makes an impact for staff and citizens. She was noted for transitioning the Community Development Department from a paper-based system to an inter-active digital one. She also developed a program to help needy citizens borrow tools, receive equipment, and request volunteer assistance in order to work through or avoid code violations.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $90.03 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $93.27.
Natural gas is $2.63 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,942 and silver is $23.82.
A memorial service for Elaine Tannis, 72, of Chickasha will be held at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 26th at Ferguson Funeral Home. She worked as a loan officer and served on the board of directors for the Chickasha Senior Nutrition Center. Memorial contributions may be made to the nutrition center.