Nearly 15,000 vote early on first day

October 19, 2010 LITTLE ROCK — Thousands of Arkansas voters cast early ballots Monday in an election that Republicans hope will give them major gains in a state long controlled by Democrats.In Independence County, the number turning out on Monday was 170.The Arkansas secretary of state’s office said that by late afternoon 14,956 people cast a ballot Monday, the first day of early voting for the Nov. 2 election. Another 6,894 people have voted absentee, the office said. The numbers did not include early vote totals from 19 of the state’s 75 counties.

John 3:16 ‘variety’ a success

October 19, 2010 Completion of a seven-acre park at the John 3:16 Ministries spiritual-based boot camp for men with addictions in Charlotte is now one step closer to reality.More than $60,000 was raised during the ministry’s fifth annual Variety Night on Saturday at the University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville, John 3:16 founder Bryan Tuggle said. Proceeds, including those raised through admission, personal donations and corporate sponsors as well as silent and live auctions, will also help maintain upkeep of the boot camp which currently serves 60 residents.

Three agri majors attend student leadership conference at ASU

October 19, 2010 JONESBORO — Three area students were among the 55 participating in the annual Arkansas State University College of Agriculture and Technology Student Leadership Conference.The conference was held Sept. 24 at the ASU Cooper Alumni Center in Jonesboro. It is designed to help new and returning students prepare to effectively lead student organizations at ASU and provide basic leadership skills that will help them compete in the job market, according to a news release.

3 earn scholarships

October 19, 2010 Three students have been awarded the Academic Distinction Scholarship to the University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville, announced Melissa Sisco, director of financial aid.Benton Henderson of Cherokee Village graduated from Highland High School. He is the son of Robin Henderson. He plans to seek an associate of arts.Candy Mize of Smithville graduated from Hillcrest High School. She is the daughter of Lyne Edwards. She plans to seek a degree in business management.

Autumn events set for Friday

October 19, 2010 Two towns in the Ozark Mountains region of the state will host autumn-themed events on Friday.The 49th annual Fall Color Tour will be Friday in the Jasper area. The scenic route starts at the Newton County Courthouse at 9 a.m. and returns at 2:30 p.m. Several stops are made along the way. Participants should bring lunch, a jacket and comfortable shoes. The cost is $6. Call (479) 284-3150 for details.That evening, Powhatan Historic State Park will host “Ghost Walks.”

Man arrested for fleeing after near miss with cop

October 19, 2010 A glance in his side mirror let an Independence County sheriff’s drug officer see a close call from a vehicle he had just met at an intersection Thursday afternoon.Narcotics Officer John Scarbrough, said he and Deputy Chris Toland were traveling west on White Drive at the intersection of Highway 167 around 4:30 p.m. when the driver of an oncoming Dodge Durango almost struck the rear of their truck as he drove by and then crossed the center line.

Bulb sale to be Saturday

October 19, 2010 An Independence County Master Gardeners Bulb Sale is scheduled for 8 a.m. to noon Saturday at the Independence County Cooperative Extension Office at 1770 Myers St. in Batesville, according to a news release. “The sale will include tulips, alliums, crocus, iris, hyacinth, daffodil/narcissus, leucojum (snowdrop) lilies, crocosmia, crinnum lilies and hardy calla lilies,” the release states. “Experienced Master Gardeners will be on hand to offer advice and demonstrations on successful bulb selection and planting techniques.

Park party lands 9 people in jail

October 19, 2010 MELBOURNE — Nine people who reportedly had drugs and alcohol at a public place perhaps should have stayed home to party instead.Izard County deputies received information that a possible drug and alcohol party was being held at the old Melbourne City Park Friday, near the flooring mill and responded to the scene.Seven men and two women were brought to the Izard County jail, according to Sheriff Tate Lawrence:

51 fires fought since Friday

October 19, 2010 LITTLE ROCK (AP) — The Arkansas Forestry Commission says its crews have contained 51 fires that burned 393 acres since 3:30 p.m. Friday.A news release from the commission Monday said the fires are being fought with several single-engine air tankers that drop water on the blazes — three stationed at Hot Springs, and one each at Monticello, Camden and Searcy.

More small quakes recorded

October 19, 2010 CONWAY (AP) — An area in northern Faulkner County where a number of small earthquakes have been recorded in recent months has produced still more.The U.S. Geological Survey said that, after six quakes were recorded Friday, three quakes were recorded Saturday, three more on Sunday and four on Monday, all in the vicinity of the community of Guy.According to USGS, these quakes were recorded, listed by day, time and magnitude:Saturday — 2:04 a.m., 1.6 magnitude; 4:43 a.m., 3.5 magnitude; and 9:29 a.m., 1.6 magnitude.