Miami News-Record

Wintertime tornadoes are unusual, not unheard of

Nobody wants to think about a tornado hitting their home or business, but in Tornado Alley it’s a very real threat. When you do think about tornadoes, it’s likely in the spring and early summer when they’re most common. However, wintertime doesn’t mean the danger has passed, which was unfortunately demonstrated last Friday when 40-plus tornadoes ripped through six states causing mass destruction and numerous deaths. The best advice is to be prepared no matter the season . . . Originally published in the Dec. 21 edition of the Miami News-Record / Page 3

Miami group responds to tornado damaged states

By now, most Miami residents have probably seen the news about the severe onslaught of tornadoes that tore through six states on Friday, Dec. 10 and into the early morning hours of Saturday, Dec. 11. The overwhelming devastation a tornado can bring carries an emotional toll that often spans state lines. The Oklahoma Emergency Response Team (OKERT) plans to cross those lines to offer assistance to people impacted by the tornadoes. OKERT has been around since 2014 and is led by Rick Aldridge. Two of his team members will be heading to Mayfield, Kentucky this evening. Kentucky was hit the worst with at least 74 confirmed deaths by Tuesday night, including the youngest victim, a 5-month-old infant. The state still had over 100 people unaccounted for at that time. Other states in the path of the 40-plus confirmed tornadoes included Arkansas, Illinois, Missouri, Mississippi and Tennessee. Originally published in the Dec. 17, 2021 edition of the Miami News-Record

Wardog Thespians host cookies with Santa

Looking for some fun “reindeer games” for your kids this holiday season? Join the Wardog Thespians at their first-ever “Cookies with Santa” fundraiser this Saturday, Dec. 11, from 9 a.m. to noon in the Miami Junior High Commons Area. The festive bash is the brainchild of Kaylea Hutson-Miller, the Wardog Thespians’ adviser/coach and the speech, drama, debate and journalism teacher at Miami High School. “Years of covering Christmas events for the ‘Grove Sun’ let me see how parents are always looking for a safe, fun place for their kids to see and get to meet Santa,” explained Hutson-Miller. “We checked with local officials and realized this was a void we could fill in the community.” / Originally published in the Dec. 10 edition of the Miami News-Record

Chamber announces Miami parade winners

Miami Regional Chamber of Commerce Director Cindy Morris announced the winners of the “Music of Christmas” Route 66 Christmas parade held in Downtown Miami last Saturday. Morris said the parade had at least 89 entries and a few extras may have gone uncounted. Morris said the Chamber had already received lots of comments on how great the parade was this year. Following last year’s smaller number of parade entries and lower attendance, she said it was nice to see they were back on track size-wise. Originally published in the Dec. 10 edition of the Miami News-Record

Grinch fan wins Miss Merry Christmas 2021

The Miami Hi-Noon Business Women’s Club held their annual Miss Merry Christmas on Thursday, Dec. 3 and they crowned the cutest Grinch in the land. Pat Hecksher emceed the event with six participants ranging in age between 3 and 8. Elaina Joyce Parker was the winner of the 2021 Miss Merry Christmas pageant. Three-year-old Elaina is the daughter of Korie Payton and Detrick Parker and the granddaughter of James and Sari Payton. Elaina loves Mr. Grinch as demonstrated by her chosen outfit for the pageant, which sported the Grinch’s signature green fur. She also loves riding bikes, reading books and everything rainbow. Elaina was presented with a sash, tiara, 1st place trophy and piggy bank containing $100 . . . Originally published in the Dec. 7, 2021 edition of the Miami News-Record / Page 3

Parade phenomal success in town that doesn't exist

From infants to older folks, hundreds of people lined the street to watch the 7th annual Picher Christmas parade on Dec. 4. Kids eagerly awaited the first toss of candy from parade participants while two older gentlemen talked about the glory days on the Picher football field. It was a traditional scene filled with small-town charm and community spirit. There was just one big difference between this parade and the many others that took place on Saturday. The Town of Picher technically no longer exists . . . Originally appeared in the Dec. 7, 2021 edition of the Miami News-Record / Page 1

Miami parade is the icing on the cake

Even after a long day of parade watching, the crowd was still thick at the “Music of Christmas” Route 66 Christmas parade in Downtown Miami. The parade route was altered last year due to road construction, running south-to-north. The annual event was back on its traditional north-to-south course this year. A large chunk of Main Street was closed down to accommodate the parade route, which began at the railroad tracks. Parade participants moved down Main Street among a throng of residents and visitors from surrounding towns until hitting the end of the line at 2nd Street South . . . Originally published in the Dec. 7, 2021 edition of the Miami News-Record / Page 1

Quapaw Parade Keeps the Party Going

Quapaw shut down a short stretch of Route 66 for about 30 minutes for its annual Christmas parade. The highway doubles as the town’s Main Street and it was lined with kids and adults of all ages who were ready for the next holiday event scheduled last Saturday. As the second parade of the day, the Route 66 Express store on the town’s main drag was invaded by parade attendees looking for a bathroom and/or a quick bite to eat or cool drink before the festivities began. Originally published in the Dec. 7, 2021 edition of Miami News-Record / Page 2

Rotary offers pancakes to support great causes

Saturday, Dec. 4 is the Rotary Club’s annual Pancake Breakfast, one of the club’s three annual fundraisers. As you’re enjoying your fluffy cakes of yumminess, consider all the good causes your dollars are helping the Rotary to support. “Our Pancake Breakfast has been going on for more years than anybody in our club knows,” joked Michael Addington, the Rotary Club’s current Treasurer, Youth Exchange Officer and RYLA Chair. “It’s always the first Saturday in December every year on the same day as the Christmas Parade.” Originally published in the Dec 3, 2021 edition of the Miami News-Record

Double Cast Brings The Nutcracker to Life

Christi Leonard has been teaching children to dance for the past 42 years. She faces one of the biggest challenges of her career this year with a double cast for her Nutcracker ballet. “I only do Nutcracker every other year,” explained Leonard. “Last year should have been the year, but we couldn’t get into the NEO theatre because of COVID. The kids were just devastated. The Nutcracker is the story of Clara, a young girl who receives a magical Nutcracker as a gift from her uncle at her family’s annual Christmas party. Later that night, her Nutcracker grows to life-size and defeats the villainous Rat King. The Nutcracker turns into a Prince who takes Clara on a grand adventure in the Kingdom of Snow and the Land of Sweets. Originally published in the Dec. 3, 2021 edition of the Miami-News Record / Page 1

Home fire risks increase during the holidays

The holidays are in full swing and many people have already trimmed their trees and hung Christmas decorations. It’s important when decorating to make sure you’re not accidentally creating a fire hazard. Poor decorating habits and additional fire dangers brought on by wintertime heating can increase your home’s fire risk. As you enjoy the season, don’t forget basic fire safety tips to ensure your family stays safe during Christmas and throughout the New Year. Originally appeared in the Nov. 30 edition of the Miami News-Record

Park of Lights opens Thanksgiving night

The 18th annual Park of Lights kicks off Thanksgiving night at the Twin Bridges Area of Grand Lake State Park at 6 p.m. About 50,000 to 70,000 visitors drive through the Park of Lights each year, said Twin Bridges Park Partners President Melissa Davis. Davis has been involved with the Park of Lights and Twin Bridges Park Partners Board for the past eight years. Previously, she served as the group’s treasurer but she’s served as the president for the past two years. Originally appeared in Nov. 23 edition of the Miami News-Record

Route 66 centennial countdown back on track for 2022

America’s Mother Road celebrates its 100th anniversary in 2026 and Lieutenant Governor Matt Pinnell wants to throw one of the biggest birthday bashes ever for Route 66. People still want to get their kicks on Route 66 and with the big celebration coming up, a major spotlight will be put on Oklahoma as the state with the most drivable miles of the iconic highway. Originally published in the Nov 16, 2021 edition of the Miami News-Record

Miami BOE hears capital improvement update, approves staff changes

Miami school superintendent Nick Highsmith presented updates on capital improvements and the ESSER III construction project to the Board of Education Members during the regular BOE meeting held on Monday, Nov. 8. The school plans on using the same architect and construction management firm. Overall, Superintendent Highsmith said they’ve made a lot of progress over the last month. Originally published in the Nov. 12, 2021 edition of the Miami News-Record on Page 1 and continued on Page 8

Limited spaces left for Park of Lights displays

It’s not too late to join the holiday fun! The Twin Bridges Park of Lights still has a few spots open for holiday displays, but you only have until Friday, Nov. 12 to sign up. You or your business, church, civic organization or social group can snag one of these coveted spots to decorate with your special holiday message for the 2021 season. Twin Bridges State Park and the Twin Bridges Park Partners host the annual Park of Lights, which is one of the largest Christmas-themed displays of twinkling lights in the area. The Park is literally transformed each evening into a sparkling extravaganza of holiday magic that visitors can drive through and vote for their favorite displays. Originally appeared in the Nov. 9, 2021 edition of the Miami News-Record on Page 1

MHS Wardog Band Haves a Very Successful Season

Under the ongoing leadership of Toye Harris, the Miami High School Wardog Band is having one of its most successful seasons ever. While marching band is winding down, concert band is just gearing up but sometimes band members rock both styles in the same day. The high school band marched their last show for the season last Friday, Nov. 5, during the high school football game against Grove. The same band members switch over to concert band and there’s no rest for these talented troubadours. Their first concert band performance is a Veterans Day performance on Thursday, Nov. 11, at the high school gym. Later that same day, they’ll suit up in their marching band gear to play in the Veterans Day Parade. Originally appeared in the Nov. 9, 2021 edition of the Miami News-Record on Page 1 and continued on Page 4

Quapaw Band Takes 3rd at OSU Homecoming Parade

Oklahoma State University celebrated its 100th Homecoming on Saturday, Oct. 30, but the Quapaw Band had its own celebrating to do after taking 3rd Place during OSU’s Sea of Orange Parade. The band may be small compared to some, but its members are mighty and band teacher Sarah Fanning couldn’t be prouder of her students. “We just love the experience, it’s very different from parades we go to around here,” said Fanning. “It’s just very college town oriented. They’re always excited to see us, they’re excited that we’re there and they’re very supportive of us.” Originally appeared in the Nov. 9, 2021 edition of the Miami News-Record on Page 2

Wyandotte students get goodies during Red Ribbon Week

Holly Hilliard with the Wyandotte Nation set up a booth in the commons area inside the Wyandotte Middle School/High School for Red Ribbon Week on Oct. 29. Students had access to a wide array of free goodies, including granola bars and other snacks, reusable water bottles, Gatorade in various flavors, earbuds and drug awareness t-shirts. Since it was the Friday before Halloween, there was also lots of candy. Originally appeared in the Nov. 9, 2021 edition of the Miami News-Record on Page 1
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Stillwater NewsPress (Writing as Moira K. Wiley)

Perkins Water War

PERKINS - The city and a rural water district are battling over who can sell water to developing areas. During Rural Water District No. 3’s annual meeting Tuesday, some Perkins’ residents and water district members said they were not happy with the district’s decision to file a lawsuit against the city of Perkins on Oct. 10. The lawsuit states that “Perkins is and has been selling water within RWD 3’s ‘Territory’ to potential customers” of the water district. The area in question includes developed land north of Kirk Street and west of Sadler Road, a large part of Perkins Country Estates, Cimarron Trails Golf Course, Perkins-Tryon School District property, Cimarron Trails housing development and commercial land occupied by several businesses along state Highway 33. (Previously published 1/16/2003 in the Stillwater NewsPress)

The blessings of devastation

MULHALL - For residents, mention of May 3, 1999 brings back memories of a day many of them lost everything to Mother Nature’s fury. Following the devastation of twin funnels that roared through the quiet community, an indomitable spirit to survive rose from the rubble. Today, the little town is scarred but still kicking and there’s not much evidence left of that fateful day. That day, two tornadoes literally rocked Mulhall’s foundation, destroying homes and businesses, throwing trees and power lines to the ground and toppling a 100-foot tower that was the town’s sole water source. (Originally published in the Stillwater NewsPress)

New traffic lights offer safety

Perkins’ residents can enjoy the convenience and safety of new traffic lights at the busy intersection located at the eastern junction of U.S. 177 and S.H. 33 in Perkins. Construction began earlier this year on the signal lights, which were officially turned on Monday. Included with the new set of lights was a crosswalk that will make crossing the highway easier and safer for pedestrian traffic. (Originally published 7/20/2002 in the Stillwater NewsPress)

Stillwater residents celebrate Independence Day

Amidst the red, white and blue bursts of light were oohs and aahs from the crowd as Stillwater residents celebrated their independence at the Boomer Blast 4th of July celebration held at Boomer Lake on Thursday. The 30-minute fireworks display over the lake was the culmination of a day full of events that attracted people as far away as Nevada and Arizona who were in town visiting relatives during the patriotic holiday. Activities included a fishing tournament, bicycle ride, live entertainment, games and more. (Originally Published July 2002 by the Stillwater NewsPress)

Getting ready for FreeWheel

Bicyclists around the country and points beyond are gearing up for the Oklahoma FreeWheel Cross State Bicycle Tour 2002. Participating riders will be traveling nearly 400 miles on a trek that runs across the state with 50-75 miles covered each day of the seven day trip. The route starts in the southwestern Oklahoma community of Snyder and ends in South Haven, Kan. A total of 488 riders have registered for the ride, thus far, with 362 from the state of Oklahoma and 22 other states represented with a total of 111 riders. Plus, this year’s event has attracted three riders from other countries, one each from Australia, Canada and France. Marking his 14th year to participate in the event is 76-year-old Stillwater resident Bill Burke. (Originally published in the Stillwater NewsPress)

How to cope with disasters

Preparing for disaster before it strikes can be a real learning experience. The Iowa Tribe of Oklahoma found this out first hand when they recently conducted three emergency preparedness exercises. The three exercises included a wildfire drill May 2 and a massive tornado and resulting hazardous material spill June 26. Coordinators of the exercises decided to run the last two drills in conjunction with each other to better facilitate an extreme disaster. (Originally published in the Stillwater NewsPress)

Author earned fans through details

Not many Stillwater residents can say they have their own fan club. Glenn Shirley could. A fan club was formed in 1992 for Stillwater’s best known author who believed in “telling it like it was” in the accurate recounting of stories based on famous outlaws and lawmen. Writing about outlaws, lawmen and famous events in history was a passion of his, which he pursued right up to his death on Feb. 27. (Originally published in the Stillwater NewsPress)

Flu has Stillwater under the weather

According to FluSTAR, a system that tracks flu activity, the flu has officially hit Oklahoma City. FluSTAR also has confirmed an outbreak of influenza in Stillwater. Local health officials seem to have differing views on the influenza epidemic. “From Jan. 1 to Feb. 9, we’ve had a total of 80 flu patients,” said Shyla Eggers, public relations director for Stillwater Medical Center. “This might not sound like a lot, but many more people may have went to the Warren Clinic or their regular doctors. (Originally Published 2/16/2002 by the Stillwater NewsPress)

Pistol Pete portrait

A portrait of Frank “Pistol Pete” Eaton was officially unveiled Thursday at the state Capitol in Oklahoma City. The portrait was commissioned as a gift to the Capitol by Sen. Mike Morgan, D-Stillwater. It was one of two original paintings presented. The second, a portrait of William “Bill” Tilghman, was commissioned by Sen. Brad Henry. “Most Oklahomans probably think of Pistol Pete as OSU’s mascot,” said Morgan, “but may not realize he was a real person and very much the product of the Wild West. (Originally Published 02/09/2002 in the Stillwater NewsPress)

Tornados and true love

The 1996 hit movie, Twister, brought a whole new meaning to storm chasers. Real life storm chasers, Val and Amy Castor, have a passion for chasing tornadoes even greater than the on screen characters. Val became fascinated with weather as a young boy when his father would rouse him in the middle of the night to run to the family's outdoor cellar to hide from potentially dangerous storms. Playing baseball as he grew up, he remembers paying more attention to the sky than he did the game. He then went on to earn a physical geography degree from Oklahoma State University and a meteorology degree from the University of Oklahoma. Val's first year at OU, he and fellow weather enthusiasts, Bill Pryor and Steve Nelson, began chasing storms on their own. After chasing for about five years he decided to give News Channel 9 a call. After proving himself as a competent chaser, Gary England offered him a staff position. (Originally published February 2002 in the Stillwater NewsPress)

Virus battle covers state

Health officials stress vigilance, but not alarm or panic, about the West Nile virus making its way across Oklahoma. The disease is spread by mosquitoes who feed on infected birds, then bite other birds, animals or people. The virus made its first appearance in the United States in New York City during the summer of 1999. At the end of 2001, West Nile virus had been confirmed in 28 eastern states, including Arkansas and Louisiana, so the Oklahoma Department of Health developed a surveillance program for West Nile virus called “On Watch.” The first case of West Nile in Oklahoma was identified July 17 in the northeastern part of the state. (Originally published January 2002 in the Stillwater NewsPress)

Dummies show their intelligence at OSU

You can learn a lot from a dummy. The use of crash test dummies in collision simulations plays a significant role in the design and safety engineering of automobiles. Modern dummies are high-tech sensor systems that allow car makers to accurately predict bodily injuries during a crash. As part of the 2002 Awesome Design Committee activities, a detailed presentation on crash dummies and other events will be held Friday. This is the 12th year for the activities, hosted by Oklahoma State University’s College of Engineering, Architecture and Technology. (Originally published circa January 2002 in the Stillwater NewsPress)

City woman training to become a Doula

Kristy Scott is training to be a doula, or labor support specialist. Scott completed her required training in September through Doulas of the Heartland, a nonprofit organization based in Enid that trains and certifies doulas. She’s now working toward her certification, which requires her to attend and help with three births then get evaluations from each mother and delivering doctor. Doula comes from the Greek language and means handmaiden. The word has come to refer to a woman experienced in childbirth who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to the laboring couple before, during and just after childbirth. Eleven studies have shown using a doula has several effects on birth outcomes. These include shorter labor, fewer complications, Caesarean rates are reduced, less need for induced labor, use of forceps is reduced and fewer requests for pain medication and epidurals. (Originally published circa December 2001 in the Stillwater NewsPress)

Local trio confront challenges

Jacobson has climbed 50 of the 53 mountains in Colorado classified as 14ers. His goal is to climb them all. “I tried to play golf, but it didn’t give me the same thrill. Some people ask me if I’m crazy or why would I want to do this. But, no one asks an overzealous golf player why they drop everything and go play golf every chance they get. It’s the same concept with me and mountains. Many people ask me if I’m afraid of falling or dying. To which I always respond, I’m not afraid of dying, I’m afraid of not living.” (Originally published circa December 2001 in the Stillwater NewsPress)
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Perkins Journal (Writing as Moira K. Wiley)

The Perkins Journal - May 14, 2003 / Page 1

• "City to develop emergency plan" (Continued Page 7 - • "County to participate in feasibility study" (Continued Page 7 - • "Resident's tort claim for sewer damage denied" (Continued Page 7 - • "County commission approves waterline permit" (Continued Page 2 -

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