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Christmas 8 Weeks Away; Lights of Hope Begins Nov. 25

Christmas is coming.

Anderson's Lights of Hope , a holiday drive through nearly a mile of animated Christmas lights display at Darwin Wright Park, is scheduled for November 25 - 9:00 PM until Saturday, December 25 - 9:30 PM

The annual light show has over a million multi-colored lights and over 65 different displays.  The displays are both animated and stationary, and it takes about 20 minutes to drive through them. 

Proceeds from the Front Gate admission specifically goes to benefit local charities in Anderson, Oconee, and Pickens counties. 

Admission to park: $5.00 per car, $25 per 15 passenger van, $35 per bus. We take donations of special items and they are: 5 or more canned goods, new toys, new blankets, hearing aids, walkers, canes, wheelchairs, and other in-home medical equipment, 2 or more pairs of eyeglasses, new small suitcases.


Local Halloween Events Announced

What: 2010 HallowFair 
Old fashioned Halloween carnival, games and craft vendors as well as ghost stories, live music, movies on deck (B&W Wolfman and Creature from the Black Lagoon & Dracula), food, prizes, drinks and more. 
When: Oct. 30, 4 p.m. until 12 a.m.
Where: McGees Irish Pub and Restaurant, 116 W. Orr St., Anderson
For more information call 864-209-6917 or go to: 

What: Haunted House (family friendly)
When: Fridays, Saturdays, October 15-31, 7-11 p.m.
Where: Front Lot by Lifeway, 3131 North Main Street, Anderson
Haunted House, organized by Westside High School. $10 per person. All proceeds go to Westside High School. 
For more information call 864-226-7088.

What: Treats at the Mall
When: Oct. 30., 4-6 p.m.
Where:Anderson Mall, 3131 North Main Street, Anderson 
Goodies and sweets from participating retailers. Stop by Guest Services for a treat and list of participating stores. 
For more information, call 864-226-7088


AU Splits Volleyball Homecoming

ANDERSON, S.C. – The Anderson volleyball team split two Homecoming matches Saturday afternoon at the Abney Athletic Center, falling 3-1 (20-25, 25-17, 25-20, 19-25) to South Atlantic Conference-foe Carson-Newman in the day’s opening contest before bouncing back to blank Limestone 3-0 (25-21, 28-26, 25-21) in non-conference action to close out the tri-match.      

With the split, Anderson (16-10, 8-6 SAC) has won five of its last seven contests, while Carson-Newman (14-7, 8-6 SAC) swept the regular-season series with the Trojans before falling 3-1 to Limestone (6-17).

Carson-Newman took a quick lead in the opening set, but Anderson drew even and the match was tied three times before freshman Tori Calhoon knocked down one of her 10 kills to give the Trojans a lead they would not relinquish at 9-8. AU built a four-point cushion before C-N pulled within 18-17, but the Trojans went on a 4-1 run and closed out the set by scoring three of the final four points.   

Carson-Newman took advantage of a .414 attack percentage in the second frame and pushed out to an eight-point advantage en route to taking the win. The Eagles stayed hot in the third set, scoring the first five points and never trailed, taking the 2-1 overall lead. 

It was AU’s turn to gain the early edge in the fourth set, garnering a 9-5 lead before the Eagles went on a 6-2 run to knot the score at 11 apiece. The score was tied twice, but C-N claimed the lead on a Trojan error and refused to surrender the advantage. 

Four Eagles reached double-figure kills, led by Carly Mozgai’s 18, while Carly Swisher added 17 and Nikki James recorded 12. Swisher committed just one error in 30 attempts for a match-high .533 attack percentage. Lara McDonald and Courtney Lawson combined for 43 assists on the afternoon, with Angelle Hayes recording a match-high 22 digs. 

Senior Jamie Lancaster knocked down a team-leading 18 kills, while Marlie Bryant added 11 and Calhoon notched 10. Freshman Hayley Hoover dished out a career-high 41 assists in the effort, with senior Adria Mullaney collecting 17 digs and Lancaster tallying 16.           

The Trojans earned a split on the day by sweeping former conference opponent Limestone, with Lancaster collecting 15 kills and Hoover handing out 31 assists. Mullaney led the way defensively with her match-high 18 digs. Sophomore Tiffany Rowe recorded seven total blocks in the two matches. 

AU took a 13-12 lead on an error by the Lady Saints and edged out to a six-point lead before claiming the set.

The second frame featured nine ties before AU took advantage of strong serving by Marlie Bryant to take the set and her ace in the third set snapped a 19-19 tie to give AU the momentum to claim the set.  

Anderson continues its homestand on Wednesday when rival Erskine invades the Abney Athletic Center for a 6:30 p.m. contest. The Trojans will be looking to avenge an earlier setback at the hands of the Flying Fleet.


Special Council Meeting Called for Today

Anderson County Council has called a special meeting for 2 p.m. today to discuss funding for economic development. The meeting will be held at 2 p.m. in the Council Chambers of the historic courthouse.


Mahaffey Named State’s Top Personnel Administrator  

Mike Mahaffey of Anderson School District Five has been named State Personnel Administrator of the Year by the South Carolina Association of School Administrators.

Mr. Mahaffey has served District Five as Assistant Superintendent for Personnel Services for the past 10 years. Under his leadership, over 99 percent of the district’s certified staff met the state’s requirements for Highly Qualified status. He has provided leadership in the areas of professional development, diversity training, conflict resolution and teacher mentoring, and initiated the district’s Leadership Academy.

In addition, Mr. Mahaffey serves on the SCASA Board and has served on the SCASA Strategic Planning Team.

“Mike has shown outstanding leadership and wise judgment in one of the most demanding jobs in our district,” said District Five Superintendent Betty Bagley. “His advice has been invaluable to me, particularly in dealing with the budget cuts and difficult decisions made necessary by the deep economic recession of the past two years.”

As Assistant Superintendent for Personnel Services, Mr. Mahaffey manages the recruitment, selection, assignment and transfer of district staff members at all levels of employment. He serves as the Title IX Coordinator and advises administrators regarding personnel issues and holds a number of additional responsibilities related to district employment.

Mr. Mahaffey was nominated for the SCASA statewide award by Dr. Sonia Leverette, Director of Personnel Services for District Five.


Dist. 5 Trustees Choose “Southwood Academy of the Arts”  

The District Five Board of Trustees approved the name change Tuesday night, approving the unanimous recommendation of the Board’s Building Committee. The Building Committee chose the new name from 40 suggestions submitted by District residents.  The name change will take place when the Arts Academy opens in 2011. The mission of the new Southwood will be similar to that of the District’s first arts magnet school, Calhoun Academy of the Arts, in that it will embed the arts – music, dance, visual arts and drama – into the current curriculum. 

However, the Board of Trustees also approved the Committee recommendation that, in addition to the new name, the school be described on signs and in other appropriate contexts as “A Creative and Performing Arts School.”  The description will appear underneath the school name to emphasize that the school will focus on performing arts as well as an arts-based curriculum.


Trojans Continue Surge with Soccer Win Over Newberry  

NEWBERRY, S.C. – A balanced offensive attack and another strong defensive effort lifted the Anderson men’s soccer team to a 3-1 win past South Atlantic Conference-foe Newberry Wednesday afternoon at the Newberry Soccer Field. 

Making a push to finish in the top four and host the first round of the conference tournament, Anderson (10-4-1, 5-2 SAC) extended its win streak to six matches, equaling last season’s streak that began the season. The Trojan offense has averaged more than five goals per contest over the last five matches, while the defense has posted shutouts in three of the five outings, allowing just three total goals.

Newberry slipped to 1-11-2 overall and 0-6-1 in the league and has dropped seven in a row while searching for its first home win of the season. 

Anderson closes out its home schedule in a Homecoming clash with Lincoln Memorial on Saturday. The Trojans and Railsplitters are currently tied for fourth in the league standings, which has consequences because the top four teams host the opening round of the SAC tournament that begins on Wednesday, Nov. 3. Kick-off for Senior Day is scheduled for 4 p.m. at Trojan Stadium.  


Rehearsal for Murder Starts Tomorrow at ELP

Rehearsal for Murder, adapted by D.D. Brooke and directed by Jonathan Houston, is a play about a play in which the leading lady was found dead shortly following opening night. The playwright (her fiancee) turns her death into his new play. This new play has been written to reveal that her death was, in fact, a murder - not a suicide. The tension AND the laughs increase as we discover that everyone connected with this play was involved. There are surprising revelations and humorous twists all along the way to solving this clever mystery.

Shows are Oct 21, 22, 23, 24, 28, 29, 30, 31; Thursday, Friday, Saturday at 8 pm and Sunday at 3 pm

Tickets are only $15 for Adults, $13 for Seniors and $8 for Students. Please call the Box Office at (864) 224-4248 to reserve your seat.


Hanna Band Named Grand Champion at Competition

The T.L. Hanna Marching Band was named Grand Champion of the “Band across Savannah” event at North Augusta High School on October 16.    

T.L. Hanna posted an overall combined score of 95.85 in prelims, placing it ahead of all participating band including those bands in the 5A classifications. The T.L. Hanna Color Guard also placed first overall with a score of 89, and the horn line placed first with a 94.

In the Finals competition that evening, Hanna once again finished first over all with a combined score of 96.15.

The T.L. Hanna Band’s competition show includes music from the New World Symphony by Antonine Dovorak.  Soloists include Amanda Stastny, Marquez Johnson, Clay Taylor and Reid Stayanoff.

The T.L. Hanna Flag Corps captains are Amber Pettigrew and Daisha Bates. Flag Corps Co-Captains are Mallorie Smith and Jennifer Tinsley. The Drum Major is Wade Murray and the Assistant Drum Major is Vonshay Whitehurst. Band President is Clay Taylor.  Band Vice Presidents are Sam Park, Stephanie Swenson and Brandon Mukhalian.  Band Secretaries are  Nick Royals, Garrett Turpin and Rebecca Ryan.

Richard C. Baskin is the Director of the T.L. Hanna Bands. Roger Whitt is the Assistant Band Director. Shon Brown is the Percussion Instructor and Matt Grubb is the Front Ensemble Director. Victor Mooney, Amy Heintz, and Jamie Bailey are the Flag Corps Instructors. Robert Pettigrew is the Band Booster President.

T.L. Hanna’s next performance will be at the South Carolina Upper State Contest in Boiling Springs on Saturday. 


Westside Band Takes Five First Place Trophies at Berea Event

The Westside High School Ram Band earned five first place trophies in Class 4 at the recent Berea High School Green Machine Invitational.The Band earned first place in Class 4, Drum Major, Band Front (Flags), Drumline and Hornline. Also this month, the Westside Ram Band won three trophies at the Lorraine Paris Invitational competition at Newberry High School. The Westside Ram Band won second place in Class 3, Best Drum Major in Class 3, and the sixth place trophy in the Finals Competition. 

The Ram Band’s 2010 competition show is titled “CHAIN REACTION.” The show is comprised of three selections:  Fission,” “Suspended Animation,” and “Fusion.” This show features solos by Austin Dorsey and Brian Stewart on trumpet and Luke Glymph and Devon Sherrell on trombone.

Student leadership for the Ram Band includes: Drum Major Rachael Stowe, Band Captain Brian Stewart, Woodwind Captain Jon Loudermilk, Brass Captain Luke Glymph, Percussion Captain Kyle Bruenning and Guard Captain Brianna Evans.

The band is directed by Shane Vickery with assistance from Richard Powell and Butch Tarbutton. Additional instruction is provided by: David Rice – Low Brass; Payden Nichols – Percussion; and Stephanie Clark – Color Guard.

Band Booster leadership for the Westside Bandwagon Club includes: President Brian Evans, Vice President Skip Madden, Secretary Katy Glymph and Treasurer Joy Fisher.


Save-A-Lot Grocery Store Coming to Anderson

Save-A-Lot, a discount grocer with more than 1,200 stores nationwide, is planning to open an Anderson store in early 2011. The store is reportedly to be located on East Greenville Street. Calls to the corporate office for more details were not returned.

Hiring is already under way for the store for all positions. See for details on openings.


Church News Wanted

The Anderson Observer will soon feature expanded coverage of area churches and events.

We need your help. Send all church announcements and events here.


Four Second-Half Goals Sink Trojans at USC Aiken  

AIKEN, S.C. – Using four second-half goals, including three in the last 11 minutes of play, USC Aiken defeated the Anderson women’s soccer team, 4-1, in non-conference action Monday evening at the “Pacer Pit.”   

Anderson (6-9-1) took the lead late in the first half and held the advantage for more than 30 minutes before USC Aiken (3-10-1) rallied to snap the Pacers’ eight-match winless streak and give the Trojans their second consecutive setback. 

Anderson scored the first goal of the match just over a minute before intermission when Korrin Kelly blasted a shot into the lower left corner to leave the visiting Trojans with a 1-0 lead at halftime.

USC Aiken freshman Katie Bevacqua scored the equalizer in the 75th-minute when she put in a shot from 25 yards out. Fellow freshman Alex Cohen then scored the first of her three tallies on the evening just three minutes later on a shot off her left boot from 20 yards out.

Cohen scored 10 minutes later to make the score 3-1 in favor of the Pacers off an assist from teammate Brittany Moores when her shot ricocheted off the post and Cohen took advantage by placing the ball into the back of the net.

Cohen acquired her first career hat trick with a goal at the 88:27 mark, again off an assist from Moores.

USC Aiken finished with nine more shots than Anderson in the match at 17-8. The Pacers also held a 6-1 advantage in corner kicks.

The Trojans get back in action for their last home match of the season on Saturday for a Homecoming contest versus Lincoln Memorial. Kick-off is scheduled for 2 p.m. at Trojan Stadium.