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Ross to resign from Rockmart Council

The latest Rockmart Council meeting was bittersweet, and while the group had no trouble working through the night's agenda, it was potentially the last time they will do so with the help of council member Sherman Ross who announced his resignation from the council in order to pursue the office of mayor.

Ross announced his mayoral bid earlier in March, and since he is ineligible to serve as a council member while running, he resigned both in compliance with the city's rules and to make sure his seat could be adequately campaigned for ahead of the elections. He will hold his position until the end of the month, but he saw his final meeting as a council member during the July 9 session.

"Sherman has decided to run for mayor, and pursuant to the provisions of the charter of the city of Rockmart, he cannot continue to serve and qualify for the office of mayor," Rockmart City Attorney Michael McRae said. "So, because of his term and when it would end, he must resign."

Locals will be able to vote for their new mayor in November-though only Ross has announced plans to run so far. Sitting Mayor Steve Miller is not seeking re-election on this year's ballot. A special election to fill the vacancy left by Ross will also be in November.

This year's local races include seats up for vote in Aragon, Rockmart and Cedartown. Additional information about qualifying to run for an open seat will be forthcoming later this month.

In the meantime, as Ross give up his seat it won't end his involvement in the community. He plans to stay active in the community by hosting Rethink Rockmart meetings and participating in other local events.

Those interested in working with Ross on issues such as neighborhood revitalization can find more information by visiting

If he is elected mayor, he will get to return to council meetings and city affairs in his new role.

"I've talked to all of you individually," Ross said to the rest of the board. "This is my final meeting as a council member. I've enjoyed every minute of it, and we've accomplished a lot by working together."

Homespun coming up this weekend in Rockmart
Entertainment lineups being finalized for weekend event on July 19 and 20

The fun starts this coming Friday night for the 42nd annual Homespun Festival in Rockmart with plenty of things to do through the weekend at Seaborn Jones Park.

The park will start filling up with vendors on Friday morning and afternoon for the two-day festival, organized by the Polk County Chamber of Commerce as a fundraiser for the organization.

This year, the festival sees the return of several veteran vendors along with a particular fun ride through the air. Chamber Executive Director Blair Elrod reported that so long as the weather stays clear, there are plans for the return of helicopter rides to Homespun 2019.

Additionally, the festival will have several family-friendly attractions including a face painter, petting zoo, several rides, inflatable obstacle course, water walkers and two bungee jumps.

"We are very excited about the 42nd Annual Homespun in 2019 as we welcome veteran vendors and new vendors alike," Elrod said previously. "This event has something for all ages and the Polk County Chamber of Commerce is proud to hold this event that brings together the community."

This year's vendor lineup includes some new additions like painted and glitter tumblers, embroidery items, Christian art, journals and notebooks made from children's books and board games, badge reels and baby items.

Non-profit organizations taking part this year include Life Matters Outreach, CASA of Polk and Haralson Counties, the Rockmart High School Marching Band, the Polk County Rotary Club, The Magic Yarn Project and Mosaic Place.

Festival-goers will have choices of barbecue, pickles, Popsicles, cotton candy, pork skins, boiled peanuts, lemonade, lime-aid, orange-aid, tea, chips, shrimp tacos, jerk chicken tacos, jerk ribs, nachos, curry chicken and rice, snow cones, funnel cakes, hot dogs, hamburgers and water for sale during Homespun 2019.

Those who come out to the festival will have two days of music and entertainment to enjoy as well.

The gospel night line-up to start the festival on Friday evening includes Leah Kaye at 6 p.m., Bellwether Worship Band ant 7 p.m. and Heirborn at 8:30 p.m.

Gospel Night's entertainment is being sponsored by Sherman Ross State Farm in downtown Rockmart.

Saturday's entertainment line-up sponsored by H&R Block includes a pair of Polk County musicians who made a splash on national television during the spring. "The Voice" contestant Dalton Dover will take to the stage at 6:45 p.m., and "American Idol" contestant Isaac Streetman will be joined by his band and The Rock Town Revival for a show at 8:45 p.m.

The second day of the festival will begin at 11 a.m. as Ballet Garden takes center stage in Seaborn Jones Park. They'll also be holding a pageant as well.

At 11:40 a.m., Hightower Station kicks off music for the day followed by William Bosler at 12:45 p.m., Andrew Weaver at 1:15 p.m., and then the Rotary Club's annual Duck Race fundraiser will launch at 2 p.m.

Fairshake takes the stage at 2:30 p.m., followed by Cross-view Church at 3:15 p.m. and Sewell Swamp at 4:05 p.m.

Somewhere in Between plays at 5 p.m., followed by Rooster at 5:50 p.m. In between the Dover and Streetman performances, Them Mixon Boys are playing at 7:45 p.m.

Weather permitting, fireworks presented by Redmond Regional Medical Center will also return on Saturday night for the festival's grand finale at 9:30 p.m.

Additionally, the Homespun Festival will also include the annual Kiwanis Club car show, and signups are underway for the Crossview Community Church's annual 5K run.

The run is being held Saturday morning at 8 a.m. and will go on regardless of weather. The fun run will follow at 9 a.m. The race begins at the Silver Comet Trailhead next to Rockmart First United Methodist Church.

Participation is free for children under 5, and $15 for runners 5-11 for the Fun Run race.

Registration after that until July 17 is $32, and from the July 18 until Race Day is $37. Anyone who registered ahead of July 1 was guaranteed a race t-shirt, and for those following while supplies last.

Top male and female overall racers, the male and female masters, and the top 3 in each age groups will be awarded following the race.

All runners must be registered and waiting for the race to start by 7:30 a.m.

The annual Homespun Parade will begin at 10 a.m., and Alan Dean at the Nathan Dean Agency is handling requests to participate. Those interested can call 770-684-7851 for more information. The parade is free to enter, those who want to participate must have a family-friendly idea in mind, and no animals will be allowed on the parade route.

Entrants are divided up in a classification for their place in the parade. The Shriners will also be taking part. This year, youth who participated in Polk County's Special Olympics for 2019 will be the Honorary Parade Directors.

Sponsors are also what help make Homespun a success each year. Those include the premier sponsor for 2019, Redmond Regional Medical Center. They are joined by the stage sponsor, Floyd Medical Center and parade sponsor is Waste Industries.

Georgia Power is the Power Up! Generator sponsor for the year, and Peach State Ford will be sponsoring photos the Chamber takes during the event and posts online.

Registration sponsor is Georgia Highlands College. Silver Comet Furniture is sponsoring this year's map of the festival, and joins Homespun Heroes Polk County Public Service, Georgia Northwestern Technical Colelge, Croker's Hardware, Brenda Leslie — Hometown Realty, Nathan Dean Insurance Agency, Southcrest, Rockmart Slate, Sheboygan Paint, and Miura Manufacturing.

Festival friends for 2019 are Renewal by Andersen, Mary Miller State Farm, Advance Rehab, Chroma Storm Arts, and The Mosh Pit.

Organizers from the Chamber asked those who attend the annual festival to please leave their pets at home for the event. No animals will be allowed within the confines of the park during Homespun 2019.

Second Baptist set to hold giveaway event this weekend

A back to school event is coming up this weekend in Cedartown to allow local residents — especially youth — the chance to find much needed items before its time to return to the classroom at the beginning of August.

Second Baptist Church of Cedartown is hosting their Second Chance Clothing Giveaway coming up on July 19 and 20, and will be offering up everything from new clothes to small furniture items and more during the Friday and Saturday event.

Rev. Justin Carter, the pastor of Second Baptist Church, said the goal of the forthcoming giveaway is to give people who need help with clothing needs for their children ahead of the return to the classroom, but also provide some smaller household items that are useful to those in hardships as well.

Donations are being accepted at the church this week as well through Thursday.

The Second Chance Clothing Giveaway days will run from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Carter said the hope is the community will provide enough donations to help those in need. They mainly focus on clothing for all ages and sizes that can be found, and additionally small household items like end tables, lamps or microwave ovens as an example.

"We're mainly focusing on things that people might need," Carter said.

Those interested in more information can visit or can call the church at 770-748-5252.

Big job begins on new IUOE site

The International Union of Operating Engineers Local 926 brought out the right tool for the job to usher in the start of a new project on their new home for their Training Center operations.

With the ease of long practice, officials brought a small excavator into action as the boom lowered and brought back up a bucketful of dirt for the first shovelful to be dumped out ceremoniously during a June 10 event on their site next door to Cedartown Middle School.

There's a lot more red Georgia clay for contractors to move to prepare the site for the training center, which will have 88 acres to expand upon in the coming years according to Local 926 Business Manager Mark Templeton.

He said during the ceremonies that contractors are soon to be hard at work on the facility that will bring another big investment into Polk County.

"We've got about $1.4 million invested in building a brand new, state-of-the-art facility right here with classrooms, bays for the equipment and training, for office space for the apprenticeships," Templeton said.

He said the apprenticeship program ultimately takes four years to complete and usually runs in classes on a half-year basis of 10

participants at a time gaining 8,000 hours of experience. Those in training have to spend at least 196 hours a year in training at the forthcoming facility alone, but spend most of their time learning through experience on the job site.

"It's an earn-while-you-learn program, where apprentices can still earn a check and take care of their families," he said. "At the end of all this, the cost of all this is absolutely zero. They come out of it with a career ahead of them and at a place they call their own out here, because the members own this site."

Ongoing training through careers continue as new requirements for Operating Engineers of heavy equipment are added with new vehicles and systems to learn, Templeton said.

Ultimately, that will bring additional people to Polk County from outside the community.

The International Union of Operating Engineers first began their training and apprenticeship program in 1969, and it was located for the past five decades on a 23-acre site in Clayton County.

The Atlanta-based Union chapter consists of members who operate a variety of equipment on construction sites, from excavators and bulldozers to cranes and more.

Templeton also thanked local officials for their assistance in making the project work out for all involved. He also thanked members of the union and retirees who support the work that goes into bringing the new training center to reality.

He said the project is expected to wrap up sometime by the end of the year and hoped to be able to invite all to come back out in December to celebrate the opening of the new facility.

IUOE already has a small shop site on the property that was sold by the Development Authority of Polk County for the new training facility, as well as several pieces of equipment they use to train members and apprentices.

Chick-fil-A hosts Cow Appreciation Day

Chick-fil-A Rockmart hosted their annual Cow Appreciation Day event filled with free food and fun.

The corporate-endorsed event has been held for the past fifteen years at over 2,400 Chick-fil-A restaurants across the country, with Chick-fil-A Rockmart celebrating their second year of participation this year.

Cow Appreciation Day was created to celebrate customer appreciation and honor the company's iconic Eat Mor Chikine Cows. On the designated day, customers who visit any Chick-fil-A restaurant location wearing any cowlike apparel or accessory will receive a free entree.

Chick-fil-A Rockmart decided to go above and beyond with their 2019 celebration and activities on Tuesday, July 9, including hosting a live calf and a photographer, which seemed to play a role in the almost doubled increase of community turnout compared to last year's event.

"I had quite a few customers tell me that they passed other Chick-fil-A locations to come to us because we had the live cow," Chick-fil-A Rockmart Operator Zach Thomas said.

Thomas added that their location gave away almost 400 meals between the hours of 6:30 a.m. and 7 p.m. that day.

The restaurant also

allowed members of the Polk County Show Team to collect donations all day. The students raised over $501 for the upcoming school year and show season, which was an increase from the $460 they raised last year.

"It's a great and fun way to appreciate the cows and our customers and get the community involved," Thomas said. "We want to provide opportunities for families and children to be engaged."

Chick-fil-A Rockmart participates in many other community events throughout the year, including hosting a back-to-school event and sponsoring both Rockmart and Cedartown High School's Chick-fil-A Leader Academy programs. Look for more information to come on these activities.


The Cedartown Farmer's Market has a new location and time for the 2019 season. Market-goers are invited to come out to the corner of Ware and South Main Street in Cedartown starting in recent weeks and continuing on Tuesdays from 1 to 5 p.m. Contact Five Cedars Farm to participate at 678-246-1216 to learn more about becoming a vendor.

Come enjoy an day in the park with good food and music on July 27 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Seaborn Jones Park where Feed My Sheep Ministry will be holding a Fish Fry to raise funds for their annual Thanksgiving Dinner coming up later this year. Money raised will go toward the purchase of toys and food for the meal. Gospel signing will be part of the day of fun at the Fish Fry. Those interested in helping out can contact Floreace Stocks at 678-719-1981.

Kathy Torres is offering Paint Parties on Tuesday, July 16 and August 27 from 6 to 8:30 p.m. for $20 each, which includes all supplies, at the Rockmart Cultural Arts Center. Have a fun time and take home a painting you made yourself.{div}Mount Tabor Baptist Church, located at 3068 Old Alabama Road in Taylorsville, is holding Vacation Bible School starting July 22 and continuing through

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

July 26 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Classes are provided for all ages. Supper will be served each night at 6 p.m. A parade through Taylorsville will be conducted this Saturday, July 20 beginning at 5 p.m. as part of the week's celebration. Food and fellowship will be provided after the parade. This year's Commencement Service will be held on Sunday, July 28 beginning at 6 p.m. This year's theme is "NUGGETS: Just Stay With The Stuff". Everyone is invited to attend. For more information contact Pastor Brent Edwards at 770-715-6167.RCAC has classes for toddlers, children and adults at the Rockmart Cultural Arts Center in drawing, painting, photography, yoga, chorus, piano, whittling, and pottery. For more information, call 770-684-2707 or email

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

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 call Robin Forston at 404-895-6517 or email robin. or call 1-877-210-KIDS. Visit 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 up this Wednesday, July 17. 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 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 or call 706-506-0649.

Did you know that nationwide the American Red Cross assists 53 people every 60 seconds during personal and local disasters? Our Northwest Georgia Red Cross Chapter serves Polk County. If you'd like to do some meaningful volunteering, please contact Arthene Bressler at 762-231-9896 and visit our website at

Save the date: The Boys and Girls Club of NWGA is hosting a Polk County Golf Tournament on Friday, Aug. 16 at 9 a.m. at the Cherokee Golf and Country Club. Find more information at or call 706-234-8591.

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.

Community Share Ministries is hosting "Hope for the Hungry" on the first Tuesday of every month to provide food assistance to the community. They'll be in town again on Tuesday, June 4. Food is provided free of charge, and no identification is required to get help. Those interested can visit Community Share Ministries Cedartown thrift store at 1116 N. Main St., Cedartown.

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 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, email, or visit

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.


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.