Shelia Mader

Shelia Mader

Sports Editor

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Grand Ridge residents celebrated the opening of their splash pad

The city park was filled with laughter, giggles and smiles from young to old Tuesday evening when the town officially opened the new splash pad. With the installation of a Splash Pad, compliments in part to a FRDAP grant, the kids will be lining up to soak up the cool water.  The Town of Grand Ridge couldn’t be happier for the timing of the installation of the Splash Pad.  

Grand Ridge Mayor JR Mooneyham says this will add to an already nice park and playground, “We had a good crowd.  It was flooding down the road just a little way and I think that may have deterred some of them but it was a nice turnout. We have a really park and this is just one phase of what we are adding. This will add to the park and give us something different than just regular playground equipment. They can enjoy the water and cool off. We have been planning this for a couple of years and the grant just fell into place for us.”  

Mooneyham said he is hopeful the park is full of youngsters daily, “It will open from seven in the morning until nine at night. This will be great for kids to come and cool off.”

The splash pad was paid for in part by a FRDAP grant with the town of Grand Ridge conducting fundraisers to offset the costs not covered in the grant. The kids of Grand Ridge will enjoy this Splash Pad for years to come and the town is very appreciative of those who have contributed to this fundraiser. This will also give those who wish to recognize someone special, either past or present, with the purchase of the brick.  Brick prices are listed below:

They are offering three brick sizes and you can pick from the Clip Art provided or even provide your own.  The town is also accepting larger donations for anyone who might want to purchase multiple bricks and create an array.  

For any questions involving donations larger than $500 or questions about your order please contact The Town of Grand Ridge at 850-482-4621 or Kimberly Applewhite at 850-209-7765.  

Jackson County Fire Rescue station 22 is under construction

Delays, architectural changes, changes in personnel scheduled to occupy the building have all contributed to delays in the construction of the new Jackson County Fire Station that is scheduled to be located on Commercial Park Drive. Finally, and at the relief Chief Charlie Brunner and of many concerned citizens, construction has begun.

The TIMES spoke with Jackson County Fire Rescue Chief Charlie Brunner Wednesday morning and he was more than relieved to be moving forward, “This will serve as the new Jackson County Fire Rescue headquarters. The number system is a little different than originally numbered. This will actually be station number 22, but it will be our new headquarters.”

Chief Brunner said as far as who is housed there, “There will be one ambulance and one firetruck and then the administrative staff will also be housed on the bottom floor. The EMTs and paramedics will be housed upstairs.” 

As far as plans for the rescue stationed at Industrial Park now, Brunner says, “We will keep one ambulance there and other fire apparatus to respond to both fire and medical emergencies.  We will still have an ambulance there so that way they can respond to Malone Greenwood, Two Egg, Dellwood and Bascom.”

That will bring the number of stations to five with one in Sneads, Alford, Campbellton and two in Marianna. Brunner says about plans to move a station to the northeast section of Jackson County, “With one being actually in the city limits of Marianna now, because the one at the Industrial (Commercial) Park is actually in the city limits, the county would like to look into that. I guess before I came on board, there were talks about moving an ambulance more to the northeast corner, not the actual corner but maybe somewhere centrally located in the unincorporated area like the Bascom area. That way it could respond back to Greenwood, over to Malone and to Dellwood and Two Egg.  Of course, that is depending on funding too.”

Asked about staffing conditions, Brunner said, “We are currently advertising for two full-time EMT firefighters and we have seven paramedic positions opened. We just filled one paramedic position or we are in the process of filling it now.”

Once again, with all the destruction, Jackson County is working towards rebuilding and the Jackson County Fire Rescue Station is just one more example of that.


Rockhounds are AAA champions

  • Published in Sports

The Rockhounds faced the Scrappers in the AAA league championship game last week. The Rockhounds picked up the 12-0 win, making them the 2019 AAA undefeated champions. 

In the top of the first, Mason Wood was issued a leadoff walk for the Rockhounds. With one out, Landen Gammons singled to move Wood to second. Cody Byrd singled to load the bases for his team with JoJo Saffold recording three RBIs on a standup triple. Saffold scored before a strikeout ended the inning. The Scrappers were three up, three down in the bottom of the frame. Going into the second inning the Rockhounds led 4-0.

Ethan Burt and Makylan Menchion drew back-to-back walks to get the Rockhounds offense going in the top of the second. With one out, Jaedon Nichols waited patiently for a walk that loaded the bases. Taylor Jernigan was hit by a pitch that scored another run for the Rockhounds, giving him a cheap RBI and the first run of the inning. Menchion was out on an attempted steal of home. With two outs, Mason Wood was issued a free pass that reloaded the bases. Gage Neal took one for the team that scored a run and gave him a slightly painful RBI to add to his stats. Landen Gammons followed suit for an RBI of his own when he took one for the team. Cody Byrd doubled home a pair of runs, with Byrd crossing the pate before the inning came to an end. The Scrappers were retired in order in their half of the inning. After two complete innings, the Rockhounds were in control 10-0.

With one out, Joshua Redmon, Ethan Burt and Makylan Menchion were each issued a walk for the Rockhounds in the top of the third. Redmon and Burt crossed the plate before the inning ended. Riley Farris and Braiden Chafin each waited patiently for a free pass for the Scrappers in the bottom of the third. Three consecutive outs ended the game leaving them stranded on the bags. 

Congratulations to the players, coaches and fans on a terrific season from the publisher and staff at the Jackson County Times.

Marianna cheerleaders attend camp

  • Published in Sports

The Marianna High School junior varsity and varsity cheerleading squads attended NCA cheer camp last week. This year’s camp was unique, in that coaches Chelsea Blanton and Jordan Exum Moore chose to have NCA come to their cheerleaders rather than them traveling. The camp was held at Marianna High School gym. 

The squads worked on tumbling, stunting, chants and cheers. Both squads will bring new cheers and stunts to the sidelines this year from what they were taught in the camp.

Six varsity cheerleaders took their game to the next level and made All-American.  Those were Juliette Alday, Avery Arunakul, Allianne Bryan, Lauren Martin, Jadyn Stevens and Kennedy Wilkes. Jayla Hellum, Georgia Lassmann and Leah Wooten were named All-American for the junior varsity squad for going above and beyond during the camp. 

Chelsea Blanton is entering her second year as head varsity coach, while Jordan Exum Moore also is starting her second year as the junior varsity coach.  Blanton said of her goals and expectations for this year, “NCA summer camp 2019 was a success with both teams getting awards of excellence and superior ribbons on our Game Day performances. After coming in mid-season last year, I feel more confident hat the team understands my expectations and what the process will be for growth as student athletes. I am looking forward to the upcoming year with these 16 talented young ladies. It has been so much fun since March working with this group. I have never seen a team unify and progress as quickly as this team has and for that reason alone, I know this is going to be a great year.”

About the decision to have the camp here as opposed to traveling with overnight expenses, Blanton said, “We want to give our girls another type of camp experience. It was more cost effective for the school and the parents.  We just wanted to change up what’s been traditionally done at Marianna in going away to camp. We are looking to try new things and this is one avenue we decided to venture down.”

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