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Archive for November, 2011

Tar Heel voters write in candidates on empty ballot

Tuesday, November 8th, 2011

TAR HEEL, NC (WWAY) — Polls are open, but the ballots are empty in one Bladen County town. None of Tar Heel’s 117 residents filed to fill three town council spots and the mayor’s office.

“The Town of Tar Heel is not a joke,” Mayor Ricky Martin said. “We’ve been laughed at that nobody filed, but one of the things we want to show is we’re going to take care of our town. Write-in votes are things that have happened here in the past. They’ll continue to happen, because we’re not politics.”

Martin has served as mayor for two years. He says a couple of reasons the ballots are empty are because people either were not sure if they wanted to run back in july or they missed the date to apply.

When the residents of Tar Heel showed up to the polls to vote, they were presented with a blank ballot, but seven write-in candidates have stepped up to fill the four town council spots.

Paulette Tanner has been on the council before and is running again. She thinks no one signed up to be on the ballot because people assumed the same council would stay in place. She decided to step up when she realized that the town could possibly be left without leaders.

“There’s some issues about the town and getting it lined up like it should be,” Tanner said. “There are some places we want in the town. Then there’s some issues about getting cleaned up a little bit.”

Despite the lack of names on the ballot, the 86 registered voters in Tar Heel showed up to write in their favorite candidates for the three council spots and mayor.

“It’s going real well,” voter Eleanor Cunningham said at midday. “People have come on out. They’re concerned about our area, and they’re proud of it as well. I think we’re going to have a good turnout.”

Martin said, “The Town of Tar Heel is small. We’re tight knit, and we take care of ourselves. We’re very rural, and rural people kind of stick together.”

Martin said although some candidates decide late to run, the size of the town makes it easy to campaign in just one day.

More: continued here

Holmes open to ‘Dawson’s Creek’ reunion

Tuesday, November 8th, 2011

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — As “One Tree Hill” prepares to sign off, could its predecessor make a comeback? For years rumors of a “Dawson’s Creek” reunion have swirled, and one star says she’s for it.

During an appearance on ABC’s “Good Morning America” today, Katie Holmes, who played Joey Potter on the Wilmington-filmed teen drama, said she’s open to reprising the role.

“It would be fun,” Holmes told Robin Roberts. “I had so much fun working on that show, and I loved everyone so much and I think about it with such fond memories.”

More: continued here

JUST ADD HOPE: UNCW students learn to train dogs, change lives

Tuesday, November 8th, 2011

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — We often hear from viewers who want to see more coverage of the positive things going on in our community.

In an effort to do that, we’re showcasing the Assistance Dog Training Program at UNC Wilmington, a unique opportunity for students to learn how to use service dogs to better their own career field. The world can be changed if you just add hope.

“I had a remote IED blast hit me, and I took shrapnel to the right side of my face, right arm and right hip,” Marine Chadd Jackson explained.

Jackson completed two tours in Iraq. He now suffers from Traumatic Brain Injury and Post-traumatic Stress Disorder because of his close calls with roadside bombs.

He’s been living with TBI and PTSD since 2005, but six months ago, his life changed.

“She’s a huge companion just to have daily,” Jackson said. “She’s a big buffer between me and society.”

“She” is a four-year-old service dog named Bailey who helps Jackson deal with his severe and crippling anxiety. Jackson received Bailey from paws4vets, a subgroup of paws4people, an assistance dog program founded by Kyria Henry. Henry just started an assistance dog program at UNCW to teach students all about service dogs.

“It’s definitely changed the way I think I look at assistance dogs,” said student Savannah Barwick. “You know, usually people think, service dog, oh, guide dog. Well, it’s not like that. There are so many different kinds. There are so many ways they can help.”

Barwick is said the class has broadened her view on how dogs can help humanity.

The two-year program teaches students how to train and use dogs in many different careers. Henry’s students have the opportunity to turn a dog into a man’s best friend.

“The biggest thing is that they have a best friend that really turns out to be the biggest thing,” Henry said. “But they can really do so many special tasks to mitigate a person’s disability. Each dog is customized for their recipient, so they all do something totally different.”

“She’s a remarkable therapist because we don’t have to talk to bond,” Jackson said of Bailey. “The bond is already there. I always have a buddy with me. I never feel alone. I always feel protected. She understands me. She obviously doesn’t talk back. She always agrees with me.”

UNCW’s Assistance Dog Program adds hope by teaching students how they can use service dogs in their own career fields.

Henry says the program is thanks to the IKEA Life Improvement Program, which she won last year. Henry received $100,000 to expand paws4people and paws4vets and chose to start the program at UNCW to make a lasting impression on the community.

More: continued here

Polls closed in Pender, Brunswick and most of New Hanover

Tuesday, November 8th, 2011

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O Christmas Tree! Wilmington’s tannenbaum takes shape along riverfront

Tuesday, November 8th, 2011

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — It might not feel like the holidays, but downtown Wilmington is sure starting to look a lot like Christmas.

City crews put up wreaths last week. Today they set up the city’s Christmas tree along the riverfront.

Because there are only a few people responsible for all of the lights, they started early to make sure everything is ready for the holidays.

The city will light the tree at a ceremony on Friday, November 25.

More: continued here



News provided by WWAY NewsChannel 3 and the StarNewsOnline

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