February 29th, 2012
For Catawba County's population, going gray isn't a gradual transition â€” it's becoming a booming shift.
In the past 10 years, the county's population of "Baby Boomers" and those in older generations is growing wildly. Census 2010 data revealed the population of residents ages 55-59 increased almost 36 percent in 10 years.
For those in the 60-64 age bracket the population growth during the past decade has been 62 percent. In the population between ages 65 and 74, the growth has been 28 percent.
After winning three baseball games a season ago, Newton-Conover started its season on the diamond with a victory Wednesday.
Behind a 10-strikeout performance from pitcher Todd Church and two RBIs each from Parker Sigmon, Tyler Sawyer and Caleb Jones, the Red Devils came away with an 8-1 win at home against Freedom.
â€śWe hit the ball, caught the ball and pitched well. Good things happened,â€ť said N-C baseball coach Corey Nunley. â€śWe made one error. I donâ€™t know how many hits we had, but when you put runners on and get them around the bases like we did, good things are going to happen.â€ť
Fred T. Foard's Lexi Shubert threw a two-hitter against West Wilkes on Tuesday, striking out eight batters in the Lady Tiger's 11-1 victory.
Shubert and teammate Olivia Purvis led Foard (1-0) with two hits each. Purvis had a pair of doubles and three RBIs.
Foard's Addison Bolick and Ashley Oliver each had home runs in the game, including a two-run homer by Bolick in the fifth inning and a solo bomb by Oliver in the first inning.
Bandys 2, North Iredell 1
CHARLOTTE, N.C. â€” NASCAR said Tuesday Brad Keselowski can keep his cellphone in his race car during events, and all drivers are encouraged to use social media.
Keselowski drew worldwide attention for posting on Twitter during a red-flag period in Monday night's season-opening Daytona 500. He posted pictures, answered questions and kept fans informed of what was happening during the stoppage that lasted just over two hours.
The tweeting gained Keselowski roughly 140,000 followers during the race.
This photo of Kaiden, Barry and Xavier McMurtry is The O-N-E photo of the week.
Barry, a U.S. Army soldier, returned from Afghanistan and surprised his sons at Mountain View Elementary, where Kaiden is in kindergarten and Xavier is in second grade.
Visit observernewsonline.com every Wednesday for a new photo of the week. Email photo suggestions and news tips to firstname.lastname@example.org
Ray Lafayette Laffon, 83, of Conover, died Feb. 28, 2012, at Palliative CareCenter and Hospice of Catawba Valley. The Laffon family has entrusted funeral arrangements to Drum Funeral Home & Cremation in Conover.
African American heritage was in the spotlight Tuesday at Catawba Valley Community College.
CVCC celebrated Black History Month with its 10th annual Multicultural Celebration insideâ€™s the college's Tarlton Complex.
The celebration gave students a day-long opportunity to visit Sankofa, an African American Museum on Wheels provided by curator and owner Angela Jennings.
Jennings, of Denmark, S.C., has been collecting historical African American artifacts, photographs and documents for 20-25 years and shares her collection with college-aged students throughout the country.
The Catawba County Schools board approved its 2012-13 local budget and capital project requests Monday night, but those plans are far from finalized.
The county managerâ€™s office will now take those requests, tweak them and present them to the Catawba County Board of Commissioners for approval.
The state, which doesnâ€™t finalize its budget until early summer, could also impose changes that would affect how much money goes where.
â€śIt may be the way we recommended it, or it may be a little different,â€ť said CCS Superintendent Glenn Barger. â€śIt just depends on what happens.â€ť
Election filing for county and state government offices ends at noon today.
Local offices up for election this year include the Catawba County register of deeds and two seats on the Catawba County Board of Commissioners.
Area voters will also elect three state legislators this year, with two state House representative spots and one state senator position up for re-election.
For information about the requirements to file for these positions, visit catawbacountync.gov/elections.
Pick up Thursday's edition of The O-N-E for a look at who has filed.
Teamwork paid off for the employees of a Hickory food distributor.
A group of 10 employees at Merchants Distributors Inc. won $250,000 in a North Carolina lottery drawing on Friday.
The group calls itself "The MDI 10," and each team member contributes $1 a week to help the group play 10 sets of numbers in Friday lottery drawings.
Gary Baker, a produce and floral buyer for the company, also buys tickets for the group.
Each Friday on his lunch break, he gets a haircut and buys the Mega Millions tickets for that nightâ€™s draw.