Portfest announces entertainers

March 4, 2009 NEWPORT — Little Big Town will be the headline act on Friday, June 5 at the 28th annual Portfest “Rollin’ on the River” Festival.  Hosted by the Newport Area Chamber of Commerce, Portfest is held on the banks of the White River at Jacksonport State Park, three miles north of Newport off Hwy. 69. 

Two charged with Apple Grocery burglary

March 4, 2009 A state trooper who saw a light inside an abandoned store stopped to investigate, and as a result two women went to jail on burglary and theft charges, according to a court affidavit filed by Independence County Sheriff’s Lt. Brenda Bittle.On March 1, Arkansas State Police Trooper Chad Conder was traveling north on Highway 167 around 7 p.m. when he noticed a light behind the old Apple Grocery at Huff, according to Bittle.

Hawg event slated

March 4, 2009 The floodwaters have long since receded, and the Batesville Kiwanis Club is ready to host another barbecue championship.“It’s hard to believe that it’s been two years since the last contest,” said Lyndal Waits, chairman of the event. “Times have changed a lot since then and we must rebuild our relationships with our sponsors, teams and our community.”

Wren seeks house seat

March 4, 2009 Tommy Wren has announced his candidacy for Arkansas House of Representatives District 71, which includes Izard County and parts of Independence and Stone counties. Wren, 32, is a Democrat and a resident of Izard County. He and his wife, Ann, are members of Melbourne Belview Baptist Church. They have two sons, Trey and Grant, and are expecting their third child in July.He is a licensed real estate appraiser and cattle farmer and is active in the Izard County Farm Bureau and serves on the county board.

51 voters turn out for first day

March 4, 2009 Fifty-one voters turned out for the first day of early voting in a special citywide election.Tammy Hillis, Independence County deputy clerk, said there were also six absentee votes turned in.Early voting may be done during business hours, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays, at the county clerk’s office inside the courthouse. Early voting ends Monday.On Tuesday, the polls will be open from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. in each of the four wards in Batesville: Independence County Extension Office, Calvary Baptist Church, West Baptist Church and First Baptist Church.

After 41 years, Anderson remains ‘loyal’

March 4, 2009 CUSHMAN — Children playing, walking to class, running to catch the school bus.Superintendent Gary Anderson can’t help but feel a little sad these days when he looks out the window of his office at Cushman School.This time next year there will be no children playing. No children walking to class. No children running to catch the school bus.And after 41 years with the school, it’s something Anderson said is hard to imagine.

State tournament pairings finally finalized

March 3, 2009 We now know all the opening state tournament times and foes for Guard circulation area high school basketball teams.With the weather-delayed championship results from the 2A North Region Tournament on Monday night, we know that Cedar Ridge’s girls are set to play Westside Johnson County at 1 Wednesday afternoon, Melbourne’s boys are opposite Hector an hour and a half later, and Melbourne’s girls are scheduled to play Eureka Springs at 4 p.m. on Thursday in first-round games at the new gymnasium at Melbourne High School.

Cedar Ridge, Melbourne win region titles

March 3, 2009 NEWARK — A fourth-time favorite and Caraway cousins were featured here Monday night in the 2A North Region Tournament finals.On their fourth try, the Cedar Ridge Lady Timberwolves delighted the home crowd by defeating the Melbourne Lady Bearkatz 44-39.In the boys final, Melbourne’s 1-2 punch of Kody Caraway and Spencer Caraway flattened the East Poinsett County Warriors by a 71-50 count.

Bassmasters meeting set

March 3, 2009 The Batesville Bassmasters will meet at 7 p.m. Thursday in the First Community Bank’s George Rider Room to review the 2009 tournament schedule, reporter Colin Patterson said.Dues will also be accepted. Dues are $35 per person.The tournament schedule opens Saturday on Greers Ferry Lake, out of Hill Creek Ramp. The tournament is from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Bowren throws no-hitter as Midland wins opener

March 3, 2009 PLEASANT PLAINS — The Midland Lady Mustangs started their softball season in grand fashion with a 17-0 pummeling of the Bradford Lady Eagles here Monday.Midland scored 12 runs in the first inning and Kayla Bowren pitched a no-hitter as the Lady Mustangs abbreviated the game in 4 1/2 innings.Bowren struck out 10 and one reached on an error. Offensively, she collected three hits and two runs batted in.