Local News

  • Visitors' center welcomes the world

    Now that the new Galax Visitor Center has been open every day for the past couple of weeks, Ray Kohl, director of the downtown facility, has met visitors from throughout the country, as well as Australia, Germany, France, England, Ireland and Canada.

    Kohl said some, who were here on weekend trips and day-long visits, are now planning to return for Smoke on the Mountain state barbecue championship in July and the Galax Old Fiddlers' Convention in August.

  • Grayson closer to final budget

    INDEPENDENCE — Grayson County citizens will soon have their chance to voice concerns with the proposed budget as supervisors close in on a set of numbers to advertise.

    Board members met for another budget work session last Wednesday night and began with a brief recap from County Administrator Jonathan Sweet.

    Sweet explained all the reductions made in budgets controlled by the county administration. Overall, the budgets saw a 12.9 percent reduction — which surpassed the goal of a county-wide 10 percent reduction in expenses.

  • More plead guilty to drug dealing charges

    ROANOKE — Two more defendants facing federal drug charges entered guilty pleas in U.S. District Court in Roanoke last week.

    Stephie Nicole Bean Davis and Michael Samuel Sawyers, both of Galax, filed paperwork with the court changing their pleas to guilty, according to information from Roanoke.

    They join Bobby Dwayne Thompson of Hillsville, who had already entered a guilty plea to a count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.

  • Thief hits homeless shelter

    “Who on Earth would steal something from a homeless shelter?”

    That's what Marcia Chemelli, a resident at the Hostel of the Good Shepherd on West Center Street in Galax, would like to know.

    The residents of the shelter noticed Tuesday morning that the solar-powered lights were missing from the front yard, and reported it to the Galax Police Department on Wednesday.

  • Elk Creek man dies in crash

    A 44-year-old Elk Creek man died in a single-vehicle crash Friday on Stones Chapel Road in Grayson County.

    Virginia State Police identified the victim as Arnold J. Brown. According to a report by Trooper J.M. Sowers, Brown was operating a 1993 Chevy S-10 at the time of the accident, which occurred at 6:25 p.m., about 1.5 miles west of Powder Mill Road.

    Brown lost control of the vehicle on a gravel road and ran off the road to the left.

  • Free Clinic moving to new home

    The Free Clinic of the Twin Counties began moving last week to its new location at 140 Larkspur Lane, Suite C, in Galax.

    The clinic opened its first physical location in August 2007 at 300 W. Oldtown St. in Galax.

    “Many thanks go to Danny Cockerham, who leased the building to the clinic for almost three years,” said Dina Slusher, director of the clinic. “The need for more space became apparent as more patients began to need assistance.”

    The new location will offer 2,250 square feet of space.

  • Grayson to hold budget hearing

    INDEPENDENCE — Grayson County residents will have one final chance to plead for a lesser tax rate when the supervisors hold a public hearing on the proposed 2010-11 budget next week.

    The public hearing is scheduled for 7 p.m. on June 10, during the board’s regular monthly meeting.

    With a proposed tax increase of 44 percent, the real estate levy will jump to 49 cents next year.

    The increase comes as the county looks to crawl out of a deep financial hole, which includes an estimated tax anticipation note of more than $3.5 million next year.

  • Groups join to develop Wildwood

    HILLSVILLE — The regional economic development authority has taken on a new partner in the pursuit of developing the Wildwood Commerce Park at Interstate 77's Exit 19 — the regional solid waste authority.

    Both groups — Blue Ridge Crossroads Economic Development Authority and Carroll-Galax-Grayson Solid Waste Authority — met at Countryside restaurant in separate meetings Thursday to have breakfast and vote on motions to collaborate in an economic development project.

  • Public record for 5/26/10 edition

    Editor’s Note: This information is taken from open court records and is a matter of public record. The listings are complete. The newspaper, as a matter of fairness, will not honor requests to omit any listing.   For information on this column or questions, call at 236-5178, ext. 213.

    Circuit Court

    These sentences were recorded Feb. 20-March 19 in the office of Susan M. Herrington, clerk of the Grayson County Circuit Court, Independence:

  • Woman dies in I-77 crash

    LAMBSBURG — An 18-year-old Columbus, Ohio, woman died in a single-vehicle crash on Interstate 77 Friday near the 3.5 mile marker.

    Candida D. Chapman, driving a 2001 Ford Explorer southbound, lost control of the vehicle at around 3:40 p.m., according to a Virginia State Police report by Trooper K.D. Blackburn.

    The Explorer hit a slight embankment, then went airborne through the median and downhill before coming to a stop in the northbound lanes.

    The Explorer, registered to a Toby Chapman, had an estimated $3,000 in damage, according to the report.