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Local

  • Jeff Hammond switches to GOP

    After serving as Lancaster County’s Democratic clerk of court for 18 years, Jeff Hammond revealed Thursday that he was joining the GOP.
    “Today, I am announcing that I will seek re-election in 2020 as a member of the Republican Party,” the 60-year-old Lancaster native told an applauding, standing-room-only crowd in the Historic Lancaster County Courthouse.
    County GOP Chair Sandy McGarry, who had publicly targeted Hammond for defeat in 2020, cheered his decision and pledged her party’s commitment to keeping him in office.

  • Buford Battleground event this Saturday

    Emily Carnes Franklin now has a special place of honor in the halls of Congress.
    On May 16, Rep. Ralph Norman read a resolution into the Congressional Record to honor Franklin for her “lifelong passion and dedication” to preserve the “sacred soil” of the Buford Battleground.
    Known as the unofficial ambassador and caretaker of the Buford Massacre site on Rocky River Road, “Miss Emily” died in June 2017.

  • Weekend Yard Sales
  • Elegant old carriage graces Buford roadside

    You can’t miss it as you drive east from Lancaster along Pageland Highway – an old, red, two-seat buggy for sale along the roadside.
    Owners Don and Doris Walters bought the horse-drawn carriage about two years ago at an auction in Troutman, N.C. Led by one of their large, draft horses – Cookie, Trixie or Maggie – they take the buggy out for an occasional spin.

  • Heath Springs approves truck-parking restrictions

    HEATH SPRINGS – Truck drivers can no longer leave their rigs in downtown Heath Springs unless they’re delivering goods or picking them up. 
    Town leaders passed an ordinance last week that prohibits oversized vehicles from parking in the downtown business district.
    “It’s because of the truck at the train depot…. You can see it from Main Street,” said town council member Iva Drakeford.

  • He made a difference in so many ways

    At his church, the NAACP, nonprofits and government boards of every purpose, Lester Belk threw his hand up whenever his community needed a volunteer.
    Belk, known for making a difference with a few carefully chosen words, died Friday at his home. He was 67.
    “His loss has hit me like a torpedo. I don’t know any other way to describe it. Lester was such a wise man,” said Dr. Paul McKenzie, director of research and development for the Lancaster County School District.

  • Shovels turn for county’s $3.1 million animal shelter

    County officials and animal advocates broke ground on a $3.1 million animal shelter Monday, capping their 20-month effort to replace the cramped, outdated facility on Lynwood Drive.
    Located on Pageland Highway, just past Lancaster Convalescent Center, the 8,600-square-foot shelter will take about a year to build.
    “We’re going to be the one that people talk about. That’s going to be good for Lancaster County,” said shelter Director Alan Williams, noting that facility discussions often come up at state meetings he attends.

  • Main Library to close for a month

    Lancaster County’s Main Library will close for the month of July as it relocates to the Barnett Building, where it will set up camp until a massive renovation and expansion are completed at the White Street location.
    The library will reopen at its temporary site the first week of August, with services pared down a bit, said Rita Vogel, director of the Lancaster County Library.
    “We will be in a much smaller building,” Vogel said. “We’ll still offer the electronic services – the internet, faxing, copying and printing.”

  • Local high school rankings vary widely in new report

    Lancaster County schools ranged widely on a recent report released by U.S. News and World Report ranking high schools across the nation.
    More than 17,000 schools were ranked on six factors based on their performance on state assessments and how well students were prepared for college, according to U.S. News.
    Indian Land High School ranked highest in Lancaster County, coming in at 3,741 in national rankings and 39th among South Carolina’s 221 high schools.

  • Local film almost set for release

    The newest short film made in Lancaster County is in the final stages of production, and you can get a first glimpse next weekend when the movie’s trailer is unveiled at Benford Brewery.
    “Fate Alchemy” is the story of three brothers whose lives are thrown for a loop when a seemingly easy drug deal goes sideways, leading to a cascade of laughable, vulgar and sometimes dangerous calamities.
    The writer, director and producer of the film, Ace Blankenship, said the movie is drawing a lot of local attention already.