Agriculture secretary announces signups, deadlines for two farm programs

October 16, 2009 WASHINGTON, D.C. — Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack recently announced that enrollment for the 2010 Direct and Counter-cyclical Program (DCP) and the Average Crop Revenue Election (ACRE) programs has begun and will continue through June 1.“USDA urges producers to make use of the e-DCP automated Web site to sign up, or producers can visit any USDA Service Center to complete their 2010 DCP or ACRE contract,” the news release states.

Austins, Mannings, Whitten among top winners in district fair horse show

October 16, 2009 MELBOURNE — The Austins and Mannings, along with Alexandra Whitten, grabbed most of the top spots in the recent North Central Arkansas District Fair horse show in the Rebecca Moser-Hickerson Arena at the fairgrounds at Melbourne.Grand Champion stallion or gelding winner was Wes Austin.Reserve Grand Champion stallion or gelding winner was Kathy Austin.Two- and three-year-old stallions and geldings winner was Wes Austin, first.

Rains force one lane to close on Pig Trail

October 16, 2009 OZARK (AP) — Arkansas highway officials say portions of the Pig Trail north of Ozark will be restricted to one lane for “an extended period of time” after heavy rains caused part of the highway to become unstable.The route is known formally as Arkansas 23 but is commonly referred to as the Pig Trail. The state Highway and Transportation Department said that the road will be restricted to one lane in places.One work area is 18 miles north of Interstate 40. When work is done there, construction will shift to a second area 19½ miles north of the interstate.

Two suspects named in Bad Boy vandalism

October 16, 2009  Two suspects have been named in an incident of burglary and vandalism at Bad Boy Mowers in Batesville.An employee of the company, Randel D. Walker, told Independence County Deputy Colby Markum that someone had gotten into the mutlit-terrain vehicle building at 200 General St. and caused about $4,000 in damages.“Davis said the suspects drove five MTVs around inside the factory, running into several items and also crashing the MTVs into each other,” Markum said.

Chamber’s tourism panel hears speaker

October 16, 2009 The Batesville Area Chamber of Commerce Tourism Committee held its regular monthly meeting on Oct. 8 at Comfort Suites. Attending was Crystal Johnson, chamber president/CEO; Bob Qualls, Lyon College; Debbie Harrison, Comfort Suites; Pravin Shetty, Ramada Inn/Holiday Inn Express; Paula Grimes, Main Street Batesville; Cathy Drew, Ozark Gateway Tourist Council; and Bob Pest, Ozark Foothills FilmFest/T Tauri Film Festival.

Quakes rattle central Ark.

October 16, 2009 LITTLE ROCK (AP) — Two small earthquakes rattled central Arkansas overnight and a third shook the area Thursday afternoon, but they were so minor that local residents felt nothing.The first quake, which occurred at 11:05 p.m. Wednesday, hit about 6 miles north-northwest of Quitman, in southwest Cleburne County, or about 50 miles north of Little Rock, and it registered a magnitude of 2.8, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

Music teacher earns professorship, stipend

October 16, 2009 Rebecca Ford Doster, music specialist for grades 3-5 at the Westminster Schools in Atlanta, was recently awarded the 2009 Goizueta Foundation Professorship by William Clarkson IV, president of the schools.Established by the Goizueta family to recognize excellence in teaching at Westminster, this professorship is a three-year award that carries a stipend each year.This year Doster began her 21st year of teaching and her 12th year at the Westminster Schools. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, she is also the accompanist for the elementary chorus and orchestras.

Fleeing driver takes taxi ride

October 16, 2009  A Magness man who reportedly fled from police in west Batesville late Thursday night was arrested early this morning as he rode home in a taxi.Sgt. Randal Sterling with the Independence County Sheriff’s Office said he was on patrol on Harrison Street just before midnight when he clocked a 1990 Ford Mustang going 47 miles per hour.

Nonprofit group to run one-day free clinic in LR

October 16, 2009 LITTLE ROCK (AP) — A nonprofit group is setting up a one-day free medical clinic next month in downtown Little Rock.Lt. Gov. Bill Halter announced today that the National Association of Free Clinics will operate the free clinic at the Statehouse Convention Center in downtown Little Rock. Halter, who helped arrange the clinic, says the association will set up a registration process for patients and volunteers leading up to the Nov. 21 clinic.Halter says he believes the one-day clinic will raise awareness of free clinics already operating in Arkansas that serve the poor.

Area winners announced at State Fair

October 16, 2009 LITTLE ROCK — Crafters from throughout Arkansas received special recognition during the 2008 Arkansas State Fair.Leisure Arts of Little Rock presented Best of Show ribbons, $50 and an assortment of Leisure Arts products to Billie Jo Branscum of Perryville, Crochet; Beverly Reeves of Glencoe (Fulton County), Hand Knitting; Valorie Nuckels of Hot Springs Village, Creative Stitchery; and Barbara Smith of Hot Springs, General Crafts.Galley Four of Little Rock awarded $50 to Van Swink Jr. of Fairfield Bay as the Overall Art Winner.