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Complaints detailed in landfill lawsuit hearing
Odors, buzzards, cattle deaths and much more detailed in April 17 testimony

The opening arguments in a first hearing in the lawsuit between Polk County and ETC of Georgia, a subsidiary of Waste Industries, began with a focus on odors, buzzards, run-off and whether soil cover on a daily basis or current solutions of using tarps will be reduce many of the problems at the Grady Road Landfill and for surrounding property owners.

Several of those property owners took the stand to talk about those problems during a day of testimony on Wednesday in front of Cobb County Senior Judge Adele Grubbs, along with an expert witness for Polk County and a trio of County Commissioners before arguments in the hearing ended for the day.

They'll be back in court on Tuesday, April 23 for attorneys for the landfill operators to come and present their side of the case in a motion being presented to require Waste Industries to use six inches of daily soil cover, along with unrestricted and unannounced access to the landfill by a representative of the county.

Additionally called to the stand during the April 17 hearing was George Gibbons, who is manager over the landfill for Waste Industries. He also is manager of a South Fulton construction and demolition landfill as well.

County Attorney Brad McFall was joined by David Flint in calling and questioning witnesses over their experiences and opinions on landfill operations in past years, and especially how neighboring property owners complaints and reported livestock deaths due to buzzards, among many other issues. Attorneys Matt Martin, John Husser and David Peppers represented Waste Industries.

The opening round hearing before Grubbs began with each side allowed to make a pair of opening statements before moving into testimony for the day. Grubbs was brought in to preside over the case following the retirement of Superior Court Chief Judge Michael Murphy in October 2018. She retired officially from the bench in 2016, but remains a senior judge and hears cases in Cobb County Superior Court.

Here's a full breakdown of the April 17 hearing. Additional coverage of the April 23 hearing will be available in the coming edition of the Standard Journal.

What the county wants

The hearing held in recent days giving attorneys representing Polk County the chance to provide arguments focused only on a single portion of the disagreement over landfill operations: mainly odor control. Flint making opening statements for the County stated that their efforts in the court appearance last week were to specifically impose what he dubbed a 90-day period where a six inch covering of dirt over the working face of the landfill is used, and to allow for the unannounced and unrestricted inspections of the Grady Road property.

Flint said the monetary portions of the lawsuit — covering overcharges on fuel and underpayments on the county's portion of tipping fees per ton collected on Saturdays — would be handled at a later time, and he hoped could be negotiated in mediation outside of the courtroom.

He focused mainly on the landfill operations and the "noxious odors and buzzards" that were part of the first portion of the complaint.

"If adequate cover is placed over waste at the landfill, it would cut down and mitigate odors and the buzzards," Flint stated. "Adequate cover is the main issue bringing Polk County and Waste Industries here today (Wednesday.)"

Flint also pointed toward a recent decision made by the Georgia Environmental Protection Division to pull the use of Posi-Shell, a spray-on coating mixed with odor reducers the landfill was using alongside a tarp and dirt covering on the sides curtail the odors coming off the working face on a daily basis rather than use just a soil covering.

Martin presenting opening statements for Waste Industries pointed toward several years of positive round of inspection scores from the Georgia Environmental Protection Division and said the company continues to operate within the permit held by Polk County and its allowances. He also pointed toward the original and revised operating agreement between the County and Waste Industries and language within that allows for the company to have some flexibility with how it operates the landfill so long as it stays within legal requirements, and how much trash can be brought to the site.

He also argued the company has continuously tried different approaches toward handling odor and wildlife problems in and around the site and "committed to timelines and substantial funds" to try and fix complaints and problems.

Along with that, Martin also stated the expert witness for the county, an Engineering Consultant named Kent McCormick, failed in his report in recommending a six inch soil cover daily to provide for how much it would cost, along with how it would change the airspace calculations and thus the longevity of the landfill itself.

Martin argued that adding soil would also increase the chances of leachate breakout due to methane pockets growing and expanding within the landfill. (More on this below.)

Neighbors testify about smells, buzzards

County attorneys during the April 17 hearing called upon several local witnesses to provide testimony about their experiences in several areas that have impacted their lives and property around the Grady Road Landfill. Chief among those: the smell.

Brought up to the stand first to testify was 76-year-old James Wilburn of a Grady Road address just down the road from the landfill, which borders his land to the north. The retired mechanic moved onto Grady Road in 2004, and at the time he told the court he never saw much of the operations there.

"It looked different then," he said. "I didn't have a mountain facing my house."

He said the situation changed just a year after moving in after 2005, when ETC of Georgia took on operations on behalf of the county and year after year he saw the landfill grow vertically. Along with the growth of the landfill came increasing problems with odor.

"It's terrible. Sometimes you can't stand it outside, and sometimes you can smell it in the house," Wilburn said.

He added he was unable to open doors or windows.

Wilburn was also one of three Grady Road residents and a property renter to complain about cattle deaths. He specifically said he was unsure of whether three baby calves he found dead were killed by buzzards who flock around the area of the landfill, but saw them around the bodies not long after their deaths.

He also described the sky as "black with buzzards."

"It's not quite as bad since they installed the air cannons," Wilburn said. "They're not circling over the landfill."

He was also one of several to testify about buzzards using his property to roost, and the subsequent required cleaning of bird droppings on his property and trees dying from the large number of buzzards on his property.

Along with Wilburn, one man who has long been involved in complaints and opposition to the landfill took the stand as well. Glenn Campbell — who lives just a few doors down from Wilburn on Grady Road — said he's no stranger to the issues and faces them daily himself.

"We get all of Atlanta's garbage," Campbell complained. "It comes from everywhere. Massive tons of garbage has made the odor worse."

He told the court the odors keep him from him and his family from enjoying life outside, also complained of calves being killed by "thousands of buzzards" that roost on his farm as well, especially in the trees and on his house and barn.

When questioned by Martin in a cross examination on the stand, he asked Campbell whether he ever sought any specific monetary compensation from the landfill for problems experienced. At first Campbell said no, but then recalled he did receive free car washes for a period from Waste Industries due to mud coming from the property being tracked onto Grady Road as trucks left the landfill.

Martin also asked Campbell about postings on Facebook where he complained about run-off flooding problems coming off the Grady Road property and onto the neighbor's land. Campbell said he never misrepresented the dates of when photos were taken when making posts on the social media site.

For Charles Baldwin's time on the stand, the Rockmart Highway resident just a quarter mile from Grady Road had to bring in gloves to present physical evidence he's found in his yard he believes came from the trucks leaving the site.

He donned latex gloves before he pulled out a pair of empty IV bags and the attached lines that he found in his yard and showed off to the court during the hearing. Baldwin told the court this was just one of the many items he finds in his yard on a daily basis. Plastic jugs, paper, and he said enough Walmart bags to stock the checkout aisles of a store.

"It's scattered along the road from my house to Victory Baptist Church," Baldwin said.

He did say that Waste Industries had been proactive on the litter issue, but only tackled the side of the highway and ditches. Baldwin said that doesn't mitigate the trash that ends up on his property and others along Rockmart Highway. He also testified to buzzard problems.

Tim Pilgrim's testimony on the stand for the county also addressed the buzzard issues. He complained about several cows and calves being killed by the birds, and said he went through the process of obtaining permission to shoot them.

Legally, the black vulture (black buzzard is a common term for them as well) are a protected species and can't be hunted. They differ from the turkey vulture in that they do not have the distinctive red head, and that the black vulture is as much carnivore as scavenger.

Pilgrim even told the court he had pictures of the death the black buzzards have caused on the property he rents on Grady Road to graze cattle. He added that after losing four calves and two cows to the birds, he has taken to shooting upward into the air when he finds them on and around the property to scare them away.

Pilgrim like others also complained of run-off problems from the landfill that brought water and mud onto their land surrounding the facility, and brought on concerns of potential contamination. Though no test results to prove those claims have yet been presented into evidence, Pilgrim specifically said he believes some calves in his herd also died due to parasites found in run-off water.

Will soil cover work?

One of the main questions of the hearing was whether to avoid complaints about odor and vultures that Waste Industries should change from their current practice of tarping and side soil cover on the working face to a full soil cover of six inches after the working day is done when the landfill is open.

That question prompted the questioning of the county's Engineering Consultant on the Grady Road Landfill operations to the stand. Kent McCormick of Triple Point Engineering of Macon was hired by the county to provide a pair of reports — one generated in September 2017 and another generated just weeks ago on April 3, 2019 — on the landfill's operations and what proactive solutions can be taken in identified problems and complaints.

McCormick told the court he met with County Manager Matt Denton and Landfill Manager George Gibbons and the administrative assistant for the landfill office Julie Brookshire in generating both reports. He also only made four trips to the landfill itself during that time. He also testified that both the county and Waste Industries were cooperative in providing information and documentation to generate the reports.

The crux of his report that centered around the call for the hearing was over soil cover versus tarping. State regulations from the EPD require that Municipal Solid Waste Landfills, which is what the Grady Road site falls under when permitted and inspected, are either supposed to use a six inch soil cover on a daily basis over the working face (the area where trash is immediately dumped and compacted when the landfill is open) or if permitted to do so, can use six inches of soil on the sides of the working face and a tarp.

Polk County holds the permit to operate the landfill and contracts Waste Industries to do the real work at the landfill, such as ensuring it makes a profit to make annual payments to the county for the right to bring in trash from around the area, and to

Basically, that involves trash being brought in locally or from around the region and metro Atlanta to the property, where Waste Industries prepares an individual cell in different sections of the property that is lined with several layers of plastic, dirt, gravel and other materials to trap all the leaky juices from trash and the resulting breakdown of waste within bags and other containers that creates methane gas and ultimately a byproduct called leachate.

As those cells fill up, each day workers bring in dirt to fill in and slope the sides of the cell and build up a base for the next day's trash to be compacted. In other landfills, the six inches of dirt placed atop trash at the end of the day provides a barrier from odors escaping, but in the case of the Grady Road Landfill and others they have permission to cover the top part with a tarp, so when new loads of trash come in per day they can begin compacting down the previous day's layer underneath the new, and save what is dubbed "air space."

That area of which trash is dumped on a daily basis is the working face, and it can be as large as 30,000 square feet of area at a time, just above two thirds of an acre of area.

When a cell is completely full in a specific part of the landfill, that is covered up and contained with two feet of soil all around, and eventually methane gas wells are added in as time goes on to extract and burn off the gas in a flare system.

McCormick's pair of reports entered into the record contained the recommendation that Waste Industries go from their current permitted use of tarps to a six inch soil cover for a 60 day trial period to see if it diminished odor issues and the proliferation of vultures.

He was asked by both sides whether the solution would work, and each time responded with a "maybe." McCormick also talked about the need to immediately cover any sludges (the byproduct of water treatment plants that are dried out) and to expand the methane gas extraction system whenever possible.


Cedar Valley Arts Festival this weekend at Peek Park

Get ready for a lot of fun this weekend in Cedartown and opportunities a-plenty to see the talents of area creators for the 55th annual Cedar Valley Arts Festival coming up this Saturday and Sunday at Peek Park.

The annual festival will be kicking off with participants racing for the finish line for the annual 5K and new this year a 10k run this Saturday morning.

A fundraiser for the Cedartown Junior Service League, the festival also provides the chance for parents and art lovers to see youth drawings and paintings on display in the tennis courts and dozens of vendors offering arts and crafts for sale.

Registration for the 22nd annual Cedar Valley Arts Festival 5K race can be found at Active.com. Awards will be given out to race winners and age category winners.

Following the race, the event kicks off at 10 a.m. this Saturday and continues through 7 p.m., and includes a car show from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. There is a $15 registration fee per car. On Sunday, the festival opens at 10 a.m. and continues through 5 p.m., and includes the 2 p.m. Arts Festival dog show.

Areas will also be available for youth arts and crafts, plus some small rides on site as well during both days. Local youth artwork on display in the tennis courts represent student work from all across Polk School District.

All items are handmade by vendors at the festival from local and area artists and producers, and coming to Peek Park over the weekend to take part and walk around is free of charge.

Organizers also plan to have activities for youth during the weekend, including some arts and crafts projects to take home.

Visit cedarvalleyartsfestival.com to learn more about the upcoming event, and check back next week for full coverage of the weekend in the May 3 edition of the Standard Journal. Additionally, anyone who would like to submit photos from the event can email them to kmyrick@polkstandardjournal.net.


Aragon PD to hold community meeting

The Aragon Police Department wishes to invite local residents to an evening of information and transparency with their first inaugural Town Hall Meeting.

The meeting set to be held on May 9 from 7 to 8 p.m. at Aragon City Hall will give citizens the opportunity to talk to officers and hear about recent efforts by the department to reduce criminal activity within the city.

Chief Paul Mazzuca and a few of his officers will be present to take questions and share details about what all the department provides, information about online resources, crime and safety data, and much more.

"This is a perfect opportunity to come together with the Aragon Police Department and ask questions to bridge the relationship," Officer Christian Cruz said. "We're going to talk about community policing, proactive policing, different programs we're apart of, and more."

The group is looking to offer transparency in their operations, so as long as no confidential information is requested, there will be no question off limits.

"No limits at all," Cruz said. "We encourage the public to come out, ask questions, and clear the air. We hope to build a better partnership. Don't be on the fence. We encourage you to come out because we can't solve problems we don't know about."

Those who can't attend the May 9 meeting can still look forward to future Town Hall Meetings.

Cruz said that they were trying to host the meetings either annually or bi-monthly. Some refreshments may also be prepared for those interested.

The meeting comes on the heels of several recent drug arrests by the department and new personnel joining the force in the past months. Details about the forthcoming meeting were shared during the April city council meeting held last Thursday.

Check back in May for more updates on the meeting and what the department shared. Find out more by calling City Hall at 770-684-6563.


Antioch Baptist celebrates 175 years in Polk

Polk County's Antioch Baptist Church continues its 175 year legacy as one of the oldest, longest-running churches in the county.

A historical reenactment, story sharing, and a cake were just a few of the ways the attendees came together to honor the history of the building and the people who have worshiped there throughout the years.

Including the reenactment, the history was detailed through a slideshow of photos and relics dating back to the church's creation in 1843. Additional items, photos, and registrars were put on display for attendees viewing pleasure, and with all said and done, it would have been difficult to leave the April 13 celebration without having learned something.

Guests were also given the opportunity to share stories, and many took to the mic armed with anecdotes about growing up in the pews, eating with their families after services, and meeting new friends in the building. The event wasn't focused solely on the past, and the members could be seen chatting and making new memories together while dining on a celebratory cake.

Betty Jo Dempsey, Antioch Baptist's longest attending member, was honored during the event and was able to share some details on how the church has changed over the years. While members naturally come and go, the building itself has seen numerous renovations since being created.

At one point, the church didn't have power, lacked air conditioning, had different seating, and was somewhat structurally different. It's through the efforts of the attendees and staff that have continuously worked to preserve and better the church that it exists in the state it does today.

"I've been here since I can remember," Dempsey said. "I've seen a lot of different additions to the church. The windows have been changed, the foyer has been changed, the fellowship hall has been built, and the air conditioner has been put in and changed from what it used to be. We didn't have the steeple, it was added later. The pews used to be individual seats — several different things are different now."

Antioch Baptist has made a lot of progress, but the group doesn't plan to stop at 175 years. Pastor Jonathan Blackmon mentioned that one of the more prominent changes coming is an updated choir that locals will be free to join.

More events are being held on a regular basis, and those interested in attending the church and becoming a part of its history can visit 3923 Antioch Rd, Cedartown on Sunday for a 10 a.m. Bible study and worships at 11 a.m. and 6 p.m.

On Wednesdays, the church hosts a 6 p.m. supper and a 7 p.m. worship. More information on the church and congregation can be found at https://www.antiochcedartown.com/.


AREA CALENDAR OF EVENTS

Taylorsville Baptist Church will be having revival services on Sunday, April 28 at 11 a.m. and 6 p.m., and Monday, April 29 at 7 p.m. Dr. Brett Davis, founding pastor of Heritage Baptist, Calhoun will be preaching God's Word. Everyone is invited. Taylorsville Baptist is located at 19 Church Street, Taylorsville.

Join Wimberly Hill Baptist Church for their celebration of Homecoming on Sunday, May 5, 2019 from 10:30 a.m. until noon. The church will be featuring music from special guests the Heirborn Quartet.

Free Notary Training is coming up on Wednesday, May 15, 2019 in a session from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. or 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. at the Polk County Courthouse with officials from Polk County Superior Court Clerk Stacie Baines office.

Need to get an item onto the Area Calendar of Events? Email kmyrick@polkstandardjournal.net today! All items must be in at least two weeks before the event to appear in the Standard Journal on time.

Those who are interested are asked to RSVP to the clerks office no later than May 14, 2019 at 3 p.m. by calling 770-749-2114. They cover the training for prospective and current notaries. All are welcome.

The annual Lost Cost Rabies Clinic sponsored by the Cedartown/Polk County Humane Society is coming up on Saturday, May 4 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Cedartown Boys and Girls Club at 321 E. Queen St. Vaccination costs for Cats and Dogs are $10 and horses are $20. Pet owners can get their dogs and cats microchipped for an additional $10, or have Precious Paws provide nail trimming for $5. All proceeds will go to the Humane Society.

Give a child a safe place to go after school and learn valuable lessons about community, life and academics by getting involved in the Boys & Girls Club of Northwest Georgia in Cedartown. Visit their center at 321 E. Queen St., Cedartown from 2:30 to 6 p.m. on weekdays and bring your children ages 5-18 for afternoon activities. For more information on how to participate or volunteer, call our office at 770-749-0869 or email asams@bgcnwga.org.

The Rockmart History Museum on South Marble Street in downtown Rockmart is open Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. and on Saturday 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. The Museum welcomes visitors and group tours. Contact Pat Sampson at 678-764-5201 for information. RHM meetings are held on the first Wednesday of each month and volunteers are welcome and encouraged to take part.

Interested in becoming a Foster or Adoptive Parent? Open your heart to a child in need and find out how you can help. Join others who seek the love of a child every second Tuesday night of each month at 6 p.m. at Polk County Division of Family and Children Services office, 100 County Loop Road in Cedartown. Information sessions explain what is required to become a foster or adoptive parent in Georgia. For more information please call Robin Forston at 404-895-6517 or email robin.forston@dhs.ga.gov or call 1-877-210-KIDS. Visit www.fostergeorgia.com for more information.

The Polk County Democratic Committee Meets on the second Saturday of every month at 9:30 a.m. In the "even" months (February, April, June, August, etc.) the organization meets at The Rockmart Library at 316 N. Piedmont Ave., Rockmart and during the "odd" months (January, March, etc.) they meet at the Cedartown Welcome Center, 609 Main St., Cedartown, GA 30125.

The American Legion in Rockmart is hosting their monthly all-you-can-eat spaghetti dinner coming this Wednesday, May 15. Meal of spaghetti, meatballs, garlic toast and salad, $5. They hold dinners on the third Wednesday of every month. Join the group for a good meal and to support veteran and children's programs. The Legion is located at 1 Veterans Circle, Rockmart.

USAPA Pickelball Ambassador Daneen England is holding a free pickleball clinic every Monday (weather permitting) from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Rockmart Tennis courts, located at 436 Hogue Avenue, Rockmart. Loaner paddles and all necessary equipment will be on hand to learn t he sport. This is a free event for anyone and they just need to wear comfortable gym clothes and tennis shoes. Contact England at 770-356-1282, or by e-mail at howardd999@yahoo.com for more information.

The office of Exceptional Students of Polk School District is available to assist with the identification of children with disabilities and provision a free appropriate public education beginning at the age of three through the age of 21. If you suspect your child is experiencing any developmental delay or you suspect your child might have a disability and would like assistance or for more information about services available through Polk School District, contact the PSD Exceptional Student Services office at 770-684-8718.

Lutheran Services of Georgia's Heritage Adoption Program partners with DFCS to find Forever Families for children waiting in Georgia's foster care system. Information Sessions are held on the third Thursday of every month at 6 p.m. at the Rome Office, located at 336 Broad St., Suite 200. Individual sessions may be scheduled to accommodate families as needed. For more email aweaver@lsga.org or call 706-506-0649.

Get assistance

Do you think you might be pregnant? You can know for sure. Contact Life Matters Outreach today to schedule a free pregnancy test. You have a right to know all the options available to you. We offer free evidence-based education and resources so that you can make a well-informed decision. The services provided at LMO Pregnancy Care Center are free of charge. Clients are treated with respect and unconditional acceptance. We are here to help YOU. Call 770-748-8911 for more information.

Victory Baptist Church's Bread of Life Food Pantry is now open. One bag of nonperishable food, five items to pick from produce, eggs and milk and two items from frozen meats, breads and others will be available. ID is required. Limit of two IDs per address. Regular hours are Mondays, 1 to 3 p.m.; Tuesdays, 5 to 7 p.m.; and Thursdays, 8 to 10 a.m.

The Georgia Legal Services Program's Claire Sherburne will be on hand at One Door Polk in Cedartown every fourth Monday to help those in need with free civil legal services to low-income persons. This will include all cases related to housing, employment, education, domestic violence, consumer fraud, wills, healthcare Journal and other issues involved in the legal complications of everyday life. Call 404-206-5175 for more information.

The Polk County Alzheimer's Caregiver Support group will meet monthly on the first Monday at 11 a.m. at Polk Medical Center. Those interested can join for fellowship and lunch in the cafeteria. For more information call John Giglio at 678-246-8188.

Aragon First United Methodist Church offers a food pantry for the community to use if they need assistance. They are open Mondays from 5:30 to 7 p.m. and Tuesday mornings from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. A picture ID is required to participate. Call 770-684-4855 for more information.

Celebrate Recovery meets every Monday night at the First Baptist Church of Rockmart starting with dinner at 6 p.m. to 6:45 p.m. Large Group at 7 p.m. and Small Share Group at 8 p.m.

Soup and Savior, a local nonprofit organization, meets from 6 to 7 p.m. Tuesdays to provide needed items to deserving people. This includes a free meal (soup), clothing and gives other assistance. Meetings are held at Glad Tidings, located at 703 Robert L Parks Blvd. in Cedartown. Donations are accepted.

Just Us Ministries Inc. Food Bank has distribution every Tuesday and Thursday at 904 Young Farms Road in Cedartown. On Tuesday the distribution is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and on Thursdays from 10 a.m. to noon. A picture ID is required. For more information call 770-687-1009 or 678-901-3354, e-mail justusmin.org@gmail.com, or visit Justusministries.com.

A caregivers support group meets on the second Monday of each month at 11 a.m. at Rockmart Presbyterian Church. Call 770-684-6289 for more information.

Take back your life and get help. Narconon can help you take steps to overcome addiction in your family. Call today for free for screenings or referrals at 1-800-431-1754.

Churches

The Rev. Gilbert Richardson and the Ware's Grove Church family of 200 Potash Road, invite everyone to join the Impact Service held each Sunday at 9:45 a.m., followed by regular worship services at 11:15 a.m. Bible class is held Wednesday nights at 7 p.m.

Anna Kresge United Methodist Church invites children, kindergarten age through middle school, to come to Kresge Kids each Wednesday from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Supper is provided. There is also a high school youth program as well. For more information, call 706-346-3100.

Rockmart First United Methodist Church invites the community to come out and join in worship on Sundays and Wednesdays at the church located at 135 W. Church St. Sunday morning worship begins with Bible study at 9:45 a.m., followed by Sunday school at 10 a.m. for all ages, and an 11 a.m. worship service. Wednesday night includes at 5 p.m. community meal on the last Wednesday of every month, 6 p.m. Bible study and choir practice at 7 p.m. Weekly children's events at the church include a 5:45 p.m. children and youth meal, 6:15 Children's music and MYF, followed by L.I.F.E. at 6:54 p.m. All are invited to join in. Call Rev. Martha Dye at 770-684-6251or email marthadye@ngumc.net for more information or questions. The church also updates weekly on their website at rockmartumc.org.

Harmony Baptist Church, 882 Little Harmony Rd, Cedartown (Esom Hill area) invites everyone to attend their weekly Sunday morning Services. First Sunday morning service begins at 9:45 a.m. with Sunday School followed by worship service at 11 a.m.. Our doors are open to all and we are looking forward to seeing you. For more information visit our Facebook page, Harmony Baptist church, Cedartown.

Shiloh Baptist Church would like to invite the community to come participate in worship services weekly at their sanctuary at 433 Shiloh Road. Join the church for Sunday school at 10 a.m., followed by 11 a.m. service or Wednesday nights at 6 p.m. Call Pastor Jamie Newsome for more information at 404-425-8510.

Cedar Lake Christian Center is a non-denominational community who invites anyone looking to find the Holy Spirit within them to come join in worship services on Sunday mornings at 10:30 a.m. with the Rev. Neil Hopper, along with Hispanic services as well to the community. Those interested in participating can join in at Cedar Lake Christian Center, located at 1890 Rome Highway, Cedartown. For more information call 770-608-0651.

Join the Church of God of the Union Assembly, 32 Prospect Road, Rockmart, for praise and worship weekly. The church welcomes anyone to come and worship regularly on Sundays and Wednesdays as well. Praise and youth services are held at 7 p.m. on Wednesday nights, and services start at 10:30 a.m. on Sunday following Sunday School at 9:45 a.m. Call Pastor Jesse Starnes at 678-757-4572 for more information.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints provides opportunities to local residents interested in hearing the message of Jesus Christ. For more information about how you can speak to local Elders, contact 687-852-7497, or visit their meeting house at 10005 N. Main St., Cedartown for worship services at 10 a.m. on Sundays.

Do you have interest in studying the Bible and prophecies within? Contact Dr. Idel Suarez about a new study group being formed locally for serious scholars of the text. Contact him at 813-310-9350 for more information about how to participate and future meetings.