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August 15th, 2011

Biofuels center boasts teamwork

August 15, 2011

Catawba County leaders say a newly opened biodiesel research facility will attract more business to the area, save money on fuel and reduce the area’s carbon footprint. State leaders call it a “model for the future.”


But the largest attribute of the facility may be the collaboration between big groups – something federal, state and local leaders all agree is necessary for positive change.

Pill Stoppers fight growing trend

August 15, 2011




Austin Frye says drug abuse in high school has changed.


A rising junior at Newton-Conover High School, Frye said teens are going beyond “smoking pot” and are experimenting with drugs found in nearly every household – prescription medications.


“I have all these friends at high school doing these pills,” Frye said.

“There are a lot of drugs and a lot of pills. They are smoking cigarettes and trying prescription drugs.”

Fabric fire sends one to hospital

August 15, 2011

One worker was taken to the hospital on Monday after a machine caught on fire in a Newton manufacturing facility.

Fire officials say a dotting machine caught on fire on the third floor of Carolina Specialty Fabrics in Newton, and one employee was taken to the hospital after inhaling too much smoke. A dotting machine is used to put traction material on fabrics used for gloves, said Newton Fire Chief Kevin Yoder.

August 12th

School progress

August 12, 2011

With a new school year set to begin soon, Newton-Conover City Schools leaders are already looking ahead to the 2012-2013 school year.

That's when the school system's new $20.8 million middle school will officially open to students. While the school won't officially open until August 2012, system officials said this week it should be complete well before then.

Check scams threaten Claremont

August 12, 2011


If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.


That’s what authorities are telling area residents about mail scams that are costing some Catawba County residents money and personal security.


The scams mostly come in the form delivery and electronic mail, authorities say, and they can give thieves access to personal bank information if not handled properly.


Tammy G. Sigmon, of Claremont, received a check in the mail through FedEx this week for $3,000. The check was supposedly sent through Key Bank NA in Brooklyn, Ohio from WakeFern Food Corp. in New Jersey.

Fair goes ‘hog wild’

August 12, 2011

With piano-playing hogs, a horse-naming competition and a star-studded music lineup, this year’s Hickory American Legion Fair is all about the kids, fair officials announced Friday.

The 98th edition of the annual fair is going “hog wild” in 2011, and officials said they are putting an emphasis on promoting agriculture this year. The fair will last from Aug. 31 to Sept. 5.

Part of the “hog wild” theme includes actual hogs as well. This year, the fair has booked performing pigs that dance and play music.

August 11th

Engineering a generation

August 11, 2011

As Nathan Miller showed off his newly built robot, he didn’t miss a beat. 
Displaying the ins and outs of his small machine made of tiny bits of Lego, he explained precisely why his creation is superior to the competition.


“Our robot is flat, so if someone else’s ultrasonic sensor is taller, it will go right over ours,” he said. “We made a wall shield in the front that will scoop up their robot and take it away, too.”

Police seize coke from infant’s room

August 11, 2011

Police arrested two Newton residents who were hiding powder cocaine in a infant’s bedroom.

Authorities seized 186 grams of powder cocaine and $9,000 in cash from 911 S. Brady Ave. in Newton on Wednesday afternoon after Newton Police Department, the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office and Hickory Police Department served a search warrant at the residence.

Newton Police Chief Don Brown said the suspects were hiding the cocaine inside an infant’s bedroom.

Teacher fired for 'inappropriate relationship with student

August 11, 2011

A Catawba County Schools middle school teacher was fired Thursday for an "inappropriate" relationship with a high school student.

Catawba County Schools Board of Education voted Thursday to terminate Mill Creek Middle School teacher Charles "Chuck" Settlemyre for six stated reasons, according to CCS Superintendent Glenn Barger. All of those reasons were related to "inappropriate conversation and contact with a student," he said. The contact occurred during the spring semester of the 2010 school year, he said.

Newton Zumbas for good cause

August 11, 2011

Area citizens will step, spin and sway tonight to raise funds for a Newton child who lost her mother to multiple brain aneurysms earlier this year.

The Perfect Workout expects at least 60 people to dance in a Zumbathon tonight at Abernethy Memorial United Methodist Church to raise money for the child of Nina Marie Leavitt Watkins, who passed away in June from multiple brain aneurysms.

Watkins was a member of The Perfect Workout and first felt sick while working out at the gym June 6, said Perfect Workout Owner Sharon Rashidi.

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