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SGT. ALVIN C. YORK NAMED TENNESSEE STATE PARK OF THE YEAR FOR WWI HISTORY   NASHVILLE – The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) recognized Sergeant Alvin C. York State Historic Park in Pall Mall as the 2017 State Park of the Year. The park – which is the former home of a World War I hero – was selected for the exceptional visitor experience offered through living history programming.   “Sgt. Alvin C. York State Historic Park is the pinnacle example of how a cultural site should operate, and how a state park can impact a narrative and a community,” said TDEC Deputy Commissioner of Parks and Conservation Brock Hill.   As the centennial of WWI and Veterans Day approached in November 2017, the park organized a weekend of large-scale living history programming, including reenacted trench assaults and a vintage football game. Since then, living history programming at the park has continued to expand. Park visitors can dive into the 20th century by exploring WWI solider equipment, eating a sample meal of wartime rations and spending the night in recreated trenches.   “Our park is relevant and impactful on a national stage,” said Park Manager Josh Waggener. “Our interpretive programs draw audiences and volunteers from across the country, giving a national voice to Tennessee’s role in this important era of history.”   The Visitor Center is modeled after York’s General Store and tours of the York home are offered daily. The park was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1977. In 2017, park staff partnered with the WWI Centennial Commission, Center for Historic Preservation and National Historic Landmarks Program to offer more than 1,200 organized and experiential programs.   Sgt. Alvin C. York State Historic Park was honored with the 2016 Excellence in Interpretation Award in 2017. The Annual Park Awards of Excellence – which honor five parks annually – were created to recognize exceptional work within Tennessee State Parks. The 2017 award winners were recognized at the Tennessee State Park annual park management conference in January at Montgomery Bell State Park. Parks are nominated by TDEC staff and voted on by Tennessee State Park leadership. Additional 2017 winners include: Cedars of Lebanon State Park (Resource Management), David Crockett Birthplace State Historic Park (Interpretation), Henry Horton State Park (Innovation) and Montgomery Bell State Park (Sustainability).   For more information about Sgt. Alvin C. York State Historic Park, visit http://tnstateparks.com/parks/about/sgt-alvin-c-york.   more

The Pentecostal Theological Seminary is happy to announce the 16th annual Clarence J. Abbott Lecture in Biblical Studies to be given on Feb. 21 in Cross Memorial Chapel at the Seminary. The theme of the lecture is "The Psalms and Pentecostal Spirituality".
The lecture will be offered by Lee Roy Martin, professor of Old Testament and Biblical Languages at the Pentecostal Theological Seminary in Cleveland. 

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  Lee University Theatre will continue its season this month with the original work, “When Mountains Move,” written by Lee Associate Professor of Creative Writing Stacey Isom Campbell. This premier performance will take place in the Buzz Oates Black Box Theater Feb. 16 and 17, and 22-24, at 7:30 p.m. 
  
“I have had the pleasure of serving as a reader for several of Stacey’s plays and working with her on a few workshop productions in the past,” said Dr. Christine Williams, associate professor of theatre at Lee. “She is such a talented playwright and brings interesting characters to life. We are honored to have the opportunity to work on this new play and introduce it to our Cleveland community.” 
  
“When Mountains Move” is the epic tale of Lillie Mae Bostic, told through a chorus of coal miners accompanied by bluegrass musicians. Due to the unusual circumstances of her birth, Lillie Mae’s father believes God has given her “a word for her people.” Set in Black Mountain, Kentucky, the story follows the decade-long labor struggle of the coal miners for the basic human rights denied them in the 1930s. In the midst of the struggle, Lillie Mae searches for her “word” while growing up in the Closplint Church of God surrounded by women who join the fight for freedom. 
  
While the play is fictional, it is inspired by historical accounts of "Bloody Harlan" in the 1930s, the preacher-miners who secretly helped to get support from the United Mine Workers of America, and the oral histories of the people who remember the struggle. The play explores how the power of words and a little bit of faith can move mountains. 
  
“The preacher-miners of the region played an important role in the coal miners’ fight for justice,” said Campbell. “This play draws attention to a history that many people do not know.” 
  
Tickets will be available at the Box Office in the Communication Arts Building Monday through Friday, 3-6 p.m., and one hour before curtain time. Tickets are $10 for adults and $7 for children, seniors, and students. 
  
Lee Theatre recommends viewing “When Mountains Move” for ages 12 and up, and "no babes in arms, please." 
  
For more information, visit www.leeuniversity.edu/theatre or email theatre@leeuniversity.edu. Fans are encouraged to follow Lee University Theatre on Facebook.  more
CSCC Athens Center Hosts 2018 Ticket to Service??ATHENS — Cleveland State Community College Athens Center is hosting its second annual Ticket to Service Volunteer Showcase at the Athens Center on Wednesday, February 14 from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. The purpose of this event is to connect students with service agencies in McMinn and Monroe Counties in order for them to become aware of volunteer opportunities and ways in which they may become more involved in the community. Last year’s event celebrated a showcase at the movies, and this year, the theme is “A Heart to Serve” and will center around a sock hop with 1950’s music, Coke floats and Cracker Jacks. We are excited about our second annual Ticket to Service event – A Heart to Serve,” stated Elizabeth Ann Brown, Tennessee Promise Success Coach. “We have planned a fun, interactive event for the students with a 1950’s sock hop theme. Representatives from various service agencies will be on hand to familiarize the students with their operations and to provide them with volunteer opportunities. We will also be hosting the Medic Blood Mobile and will also have a voter registration table set up. It is our goal to better acquaint the students with their community and to give them the opportunity to give back. The public is also invited to come donate blood from 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.” more
Melissa Keith, Jason Duggan, Brooklyn McDermott, Samantha Bean, Casey Brown, Alex McKenzie, Kim Currin, Deena Harris, Randy Watson, Rita Jones, John … more
Local 1676 Retirees will meet on Wednesday at noon at the Michigan Avenue Baptist Church. more
The next session of security and safety training sessions offered by the Bradley County Sheriff’s Office is this Friday, Feb. 9. This free session is offered from 6 to 8 p.m. at Waterville Baptist Church, located at 4555 Dalton Pike in Cleveland. more
Tim Hilton, community engagement liaison at Bradford Health Services in Chattanooga, spoke to a local crowd Thursday night to share what it is like to struggle with addiction. The event, … more
Lee University is moving forward with its plans for this year’s Great Strides walk and 65 Roses 5K run to support the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Organizers of the event, set to take place … more

A new ballot issue has been added to the November 2018 election: Whether to allow package stores in the city of Cleveland.

The Bradley County Election Commission received a petition seeking a referendum so voters can decide whether to allow package stores – also known as liquor stores – in the city. After confirming the petition met requirements, commissioners approved for the referendum to take place during the Nov. 6 election.

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