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Thumbs Up! - Oct. 1, 2012

A meeting that occurred a couple of weeks ago was covered in the newspaper, but likely garnered little attention from most readers. Encouraged by City Clerk Sonja Tolbert, Mayor Dorothy Hubbard called a meeting to explain the Georgia Open Meetings and Open Records requirements as put forth by state law. More than 80 people turned out to listen and learn as City Attorney Nathan Davis explained changes in the laws and the consequences for non-compliance. There were city employees, elected officials and committee appointees in attendance. The turnout was especially impressive, considering the meeting was not a mandatory one!

The time is almost here for the three-day Georgia Throwndown music and arts festival at the Exchange Club Fairgrounds. The team behind this endeavor, headed up by Sam Shugart, has worked tirelessly to bring quality entertainment to Albany, the first of what will hopefully be many events to come. The "there's nothing to do in Albany" crowd now has a chance to remain quiet Oct. 12-14. The lineup is an excellent one and tickets are affordable. A three-day pass is $85. Cheap seats for one performance by Big & Rich at a different venue are $56.50. Good seats at some venues for Lynyrd Skynyrd are $77. So, bring your chairs, sunscreen, blankets and the whole family to be a part of this first-of-its-kind in Albany.

Before heading out to the Georgia Throwndown on Oct 13, there is a downtown event worth consideration. The Alzheimer's Association Walk to End Alzheimer's will crank up at 9 a.m. at Riverfront Park. The 5K walk will raise money to fight this awful disease disrupts the lives of an estimated 5.4 million people in this nation alone and has now become the sixth leading cause of death in America. Join a team, make a contribution or just come out to show support. For more information, call (229) 388-8219.

On Oct. 23, the Lee County School System will offer an excellent opportunity for an inside look at its schools. Staring at 8:15 a.m., an orientation session will be held at the Central Office (126 Starksville Avenue) followed by a bus tour of the schools and lunch in a school. Whether you are a parent, a grandparent or simply curious about where your tax dollars are going, call (229) 903-2101 and let the office know you want to participate.

Not a day goes by that someone is not touched by the work of the Liberty House or Mission Change. Last week, the two organizations got very good news. A phone call to Silke Deely, executive director of Liberty House, made her day much brighter. A similar call went to LaDonna Urick, co-founder of Mission Change. As part of its centennial celebration, WW.Williams, a nationwide industrial distributor, has made a $10,000 donation to the local non-profit established to help battered women and children (Liberty House) and the same goes for the organization dedicated to local causes, including homelessness (Mission Change). Deeley plans to use the funds to help stop teen and pre-teen dating violence before it advances into adulthood. Urick, after asking three times about the amount, said, after the phone call, she "cried like a baby." What a great day it was for both.