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Local

  • District explores idea of single-gender classes

    Lancaster County School District personnel are exploring the idea of bringing single-gender classes into the fold here.

    Proponents say that separating boys and girls would allow teachers to key in on that gender's general learning style, which they hope would increase student achievement. Nearly 90 schools in the state feature single-gender classrooms, but no school in the district now offers the choice.

  • Rain eases drought concerns

    The threat of Stage 4 water restrictions is no longer imminent.

    Thanks to more than six inches of rain and regional conservation efforts since mid-December, more stringent water-use restrictions won't come before August, Duke Energy announced last week.

    Previously, Duke energy predicted that stricter water-use regulations might come as early as February.

    "That's some good news," said Lancaster County Water and Sewer District Manager Mark Knight. "But what would be better news would be reducing the restrictions we're currently at."

  • Wooden cow named Flossie a hit at 4-H's Farm Fun Day event

    The bleats of tiny goats, country music and the squeals of delighted children could be heard at Lancaster County 4-H's first Farm Fun Day on Saturday.

    The event was held at Ace Hardware and Garden Center on South Market Street. Children got their faces painted with colorful, glittery swirls or snakes and had the chance to milk a wooden cow named Flossie.

    "People are like, 'A wooden cow?' But the kids are loving it," said Lancaster County 4-H Agent Ashley Hinson. She was thrilled with the turnout.

    "This is awesome," she said.

  • Iraq War vet reads to his son's classmates

    The book Jeff Catoe read for first-graders at Brooklyn Springs Elementary School fit his son's situation so well, you might think the book was written about him.

    Catoe, a sergeant major with the U.S. Army who's done two tours of duty in Iraq, visited the school Friday to talk about how families are affected by military deployment.

    His wife, Casey, is a teacher at the school and his youngest son, Jacob, is a student there.

  • City OKs purchase of pickup truck for police department

    Lancaster City Council voted to nix one vehicle purchase in favor of another Jan. 22.

    Police Chief Hugh White explained the need for a watch commander vehicle, instead of a third patrol car in this year's capital improvement budget.

    Council approved the request 6-0. Councilman Preston Blackmon was absent.

  • Vandals damage sheriff's office patrol car

    The Lancaster County Sheriff's Office is trying to find out who spray painted "666" and "pig" on one of its cruisers.

    Sometime between 6:30 p.m. Tuesday and 1 a.m. Wednesday, someone vandalized the 2005 Ford Crown Victoria assigned to Deputy Vincent Webb, sheriff's office spokesman Tom Holland said. The numbers "666" appear on the vehicle nearly 10 times.

    Some people consider 666 as the number of the beast, as explained in the Book of Revelations.

    The vandalism happened while the car was parked in Webb's driveway.

  • USCL to celebrate Black History Month

    Organizers of a local Black History Month celebration want you to get a thorough dosage of the African-American experience and are starting from where it all began - Africa.

    The University of South Carolina at Lancaster's The African American Odyssey, a month-long celebration, kicks off today with a memorial tribute to Dr. Asa Hilliard.

    Hilliard was a psychologist, historian, professor and a founding member of the Association for the Study of Classical African Civilizations. Hilliard, who served as the association's first vice president, died last August.

  • Hodge just ducky after state calling win

    You know the old saying: If it looks like a duck, it quacks like a duck...

    Or maybe not.

    It may just be Blake Hodge playing around in his front yard.

    Blake, 12, quacked his way to the South Carolina junior duck calling championship at a Jan. 20 competition in Georgetown. With his win, he advances to the world championship in Arkansas in November.

    Blake had to perform a duck call in under 90 seconds. Competitors enter a makeshift duck blind, where a light is turned on. When the light goes off, the caller begins his routine.

  • Council fills two vacancies on planning commission

    County Council members appointed two new members to the Lancaster County Planning Commission on Monday.

    Planning Commission Chairman Frankie Faile, who represents District 5, and members Val Marz of District 1, Tim Hinson of District 7 and Bobby Hegler of District 3 resigned during the commission's monthly work session Jan. 10.

  • Powers-Norrell to run for Senate seat

    Lancaster attorney Mandy Powers-Norrell formally announced Thursday that she will be a candidate for the state Senate District 16 seat.

    The office has been held by Greg Gregory, a Republican, since 1992, but Gregory announced earlier this year he wouldn't seek re-election this year.

    Surrounded by family, friends and supporters – particularly public school educators – Powers-Norrell announced she'd be running for the seat as a Democrat. She made her announcement in front of about 50 people at Discovery School.