#FRIDAYFOOD #HALLOWEEN -inspired food #GETSPOOKY


If you do not watch the show, you cannot come. June Williams said her sister didn’t get invited last year because she didn’t watch it so she binge-watched so she could come this year!

On the other hand, Williams’ brother-n-law said “it takes some sick individuals to come with that.” But, we are talking about crazy fans of The Walking Dead television series!

So for the Fall and mid-season premieres, the group of Winona area super-fans get together to eat and watch the shows. And TWD-themed menu is so much fun, and packed with lots of ideas for a spooky-inspired dinner just in time for Halloween. Continue reading

#MEMORIALDAY Never Forget


How do we repay the sacrifice of those that gave their all for us?

It is a big question as we approach the Memorial Day holiday. For many who have had church memorials and homecomings this spring, it is a question asked regarding family and friends, but this weekend is an opportunity to honor those who have died fighting for our freedom in the United States.

Bob Graves of Winona remembers the summer of 1967, while the War In Vietnam raged. He was stationed in Fort Benning, Ga. and was asked to volunteers for the third Army Honor Guard.

After a few weeks of training, Graves was ready for his first assignment: a military funeral at a small country church near Waycross, Ga. Graves said the funeral detail consisted of 16 mean who boarded a passenger van and entertained themselves on the trip of just a couple of hours by playing cards, listening to the radio, or talking and laughing. Continue reading

Tips for honoring soldiers for their sacrifice this #MEMORIALDAY


So how do we even begin to repay the sacrifice of those that gave their all for us this Memorial Day and all the days to come? A few tips from Veteran Bob Graves of Winona, Miss.:

1.    We should never forget them. “We should embrace their families, friends and loved ones for those left behind have sacrificed as well,” Graves said.

2.    We should be good citizens. “We must vote and be involved in government at all levels,” Graves said. “The freedoms we enjoy must be guarded from a too powerful government and from a too powerful bureaucracy.”

3.    Support the military. “We must support those that serve in our military defending our way of life,” Graves said. “Today, a grave threat to our freedoms exists in the form of terrorism. We cannot be a free people if we must live in constant fear of a terrorist act.”

4.    Tell the stories of military heroes. “We must tell the stories of those that we honor today to our children and our grandchildren,” Graves said. “We cannot let our young believe that Memorial Day is ‘National Bar-b-que Day’. Those that come after us must know that their freedom came at a price, that others gave their all for them.”

5.    Hug and pray. “This Memorial Day, hug a family member or friend of one of the people named on the monument out in front of the courthouse, hug a veteran, say a prayer of thanks for them, a prayer of thanks for our liberty, and pray that God continues to bless America,” Graves said.

#FRIDAYFOOD Memorial Day side dishes for the cookout


I have had a lot of great Memorial Day celebrations over the years. As a newspaper reporter, you have the opportunity to cover many celebrations and “work” on days that everyone else has as a holiday. While it may have been annoying, those days taught me so much.

One Memorial Day, I spent covering funeral of U.S. soldier from Webster County.  I had covered military funerals in the past but this one was so impactful because it was held on Memorial Day. That day was so special to me, even though I did not know the family. It showed me the true meaning of Memorial Day.  Continue reading

There’s just a different feel in church on #Easter


Tripp Pate with his parents, Joyce and Glen Pate, and brother, Cason Pate at the flowering cross last Easter at First Baptist Church in Maben. (Submitted photo)

It is a special time of year. A time of new growth and renewal. Flowers are blooming and grass is growing.

Easter holds a special meaning for so many people. Christians recognize this as a time to remember the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ and the fulfillment of Biblical prophecy. It is a time to reflect and remember all that Christ has done in the lives of believers. While there are so many ways to celebrate, it is one holiday that many residents celebrate in their local church.

“It is THE day we get to truly focus and showcase the miracle of Christ,” said Leanne McGarr. “His sacrifice and His Resurrection. The fulfillment of God’s promise.”

Shirley Blakely said “there is just a different feel in church on Easter!”

“You know it is the day we celebrate our Savior and your heart is so joyful for what he has done,” Blakely said. “You know His spirit is there with you and the songs are so full of His glory! What a glorious day!”

Brandi Velcek said she it is a time they have breakfast together at 8 a.m. at the church, followed by preaching at 9 a.m. at Stewart Baptist Church. “Then we usually try to take family pictures afterward.” Continue reading

#FRIDAYFOOD Easter Bunny Cake


Up until just a few years ago, my husband and I hosted an Easter Egg Hunt at our house. It was a huge undertaking but we loved having everyone from our church and community over at the house on Easter Sunday. One year, we counted 75 men, women and children.

About three years ago, there was a lot of rain the day before and the morning of Easter, so we moved the potluck lunch to the church fellowship hall. The same thing happened the next year. It wasn’t long until our “kids” were too old for hunting eggs. The handful of “littles” that come to our Easter Sunday potluck do have the opportunity to hunt eggs inside or outside of the church, depending on the weather. Let’s just say, we are still finding Easter Eggs well into the fall in the church. It is hilarious! Continue reading

Celebrate with powerful music that tells the story of Easter


It is Rev. John Herring’s hope that “everyone who comes will worship the Lord and recognize in a fresh way the sacrifice that Jesus made at Calvary.”

“Music is such a powerful tool to share the gospel, because it touches the very depth of our soul and emotions,” Herring said.

Herring is the minister of music and associate pastor at First Baptist Church of Eupora, and director of the 2017 FBC Eupora Easter Cantata. The event is set for 6 p.m. April 9 in the sanctuary of FBC Eupora. Continue reading