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Food for Thought – Fireflies

My little girl, husband, and I enjoyed catching fireflies together the other night. We would race to see who could catch one first and put it in a fruit jar to see many of them light up together before we released them back into the night. I grew up racing my brother to see who could catch fireflies first and now enjoy my daughter laughing as she chases them.

Unfortunately, fireflies are disappearing all over the world, according to an article on fireflies.org. Scientists are not sure of the reason for their disappearing, but researchers blame land development and light pollution. Most species of fireflies live in rotten wood and near ponds and water. They tend to remain in the area where they are born.

The problem is our open fields and forests are being developed and paved over. As their habitat disappears, firefly numbers dwindle. Light pollution is believed to interrupt firefly flash patterns. Scientists believe the flash of fireflies get out of sync with car, home, and streetlights. This makes it difficult for fireflies to signal each other during mating, contributing to fewer fireflies the next season.

We may think that the fireflies’ only purpose is to entertain us during the summer season. However, according to scientists, fireflies can save lives. Luciferase and luciferin are chemicals fireflies use to produce their light. This is used in research for the study of cancer, diabetes, allergies, gastric inflammation, and other harmful diseases in humans.

As we have learned from research, even the little firefly is beneficial for human life. It is believed that the reduction of habitat and increased lighting may be making fireflies rarer. Fireflies bring light and sense of magic to our summer night. Our summer nights would be a little darker without the magic of the lightning bug.

I mistyped the recipe from last week, so please see the corrected recipe below.

Pineapple Lemonade

1 cup Country Time Lemonade mix

3 cups cold water

1 46 oz can of chilled pineapple juice

2 cans of Sprite

Mix all together and enjoy.

Submitted by: Judy Long, Gordonsville FCE Club

4-H News – Local Youth Make Memories & Friends

During the second week of June, Smith County 4-H took 53 happy campers to the Clyde M. York 4-H Center in Crossville, Tennessee, for a fun-filled week of 4-H Camp.

Campers had a great time making new friends, trying new things, ziplining, swimming, making crafts, playing games, spending time at the fishing pond, archery range, rifle range, and lake, enjoying a foam party, and dancing and eating s’mores around the campfire.

The following 4-H’ers from Smith County attended 4-H Camp with us this summer: Kayden Asmussen, Ali Kay Babcock, Trevor Bucher, Laikyn Bush, Maison Carden, James Cruse, Olivia Dallas, Aiden Davis, Jake Dawson, Samuel Dawson, Adalyn Dennis, Charlotte Driver, Jay Driver, Clay Driver, Oliver Durham, Jewel Flockencier, Jorja Flynt, Brooklynn Gasnik, Theron Geho, Aspen Gibbs, Jocelyn Gorman, Mason Grisham, Henry Hamblin, Bryant Lee Harper, Kiera Henry, Harper Hesson, Scarlett Hicks, Aubrey Hicks, Amelia Hodges, Tasha Hollis, Mallorie Horton, Emma House, Patrick Hughes, Rose Hughes, Charlotte Keen, McCall Kemp, Katelyn Kooken, Joshua Lee, Maizie Mahaney, Haley McDonald, Charlotte Pena, Rocco Rayner, Ella Riley, Liam Sterling, Makaeleigh Tarpley, Marshall Taylor, Easton Vescera, Jordan Vivas, Zachary Ward, Huck Warden, Everett West, Tucker Williams, and Colton Wright.

Our camp week was so successful thanks to the support of adult leaders Abby Malone, Victoria Prichard, Cynthia Zeitz, Elston Gibbs, Joshua Kooken, and Jerry Hughes, Sr. 4-H’ers Kynlee Davis and Kaylea Keen served as teen leaders. We are so grateful to these individuals for spending the week with us and making an impact on our local youth!

Smith County 4-H would also like to thank the individuals and community partners who donated to our 4-H Camp Scholarship Fund. This year, our camp scholarships were made possible by generous donations from Smith Farmers CO-OP, the Smith County Fair in memory of Bruce Apple, Petty Farms, the 4-H Picnic at the Tennessee State Fair, and several other private donors. This summer, 12 of our campers attended on half-scholarship.

Junior 4-H Camp is open to youth in Smith County who have completed grades 4-6, and we take around 50 youth to 4-H Camp every summer! If you have any questions about 4-H Camp, would like to be notified when camp sign-ups begin next year, or are interested in financially contributing to our 4-H Camp Scholarship Fund, please reach out to the UT Extension Office in Smith County.

The 4-H Youth Development Program delivers programs through cooperative efforts of the University of Tennessee, Tennessee State University, and public and private sector volunteers. 4-

H educational programs are offered to all youth, grades 4-12, on an age-appropriate basis, without regard to race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation or disability.

Thanks again to all of the volunteers, Extension Agents, and 4-H Camp staff that made our camp week safe and fun for all of our kiddos!

For further information concerning the many opportunities that 4-H has to offer the youth in Smith County, call 615-735-2900 or email rpetty@utk.edu.

UT Extension News –- Smith County Cattleman Takes Part in Beef Leaders Institute

By Katie Martin – Smith County Extension Agent

Smith County Cattlemen- Jake McCaleb

Smith County Cattlemen’s member and former President, Jake McCaleb, recently had the opportunity to take part in an exciting opportunity to strengthen his knowledge and build connections in the beef industry. Through an application and voting process, Jake was selected to be one of 25 participants from across North America to attend the Beef Leaders Institute. This educational program is hosted by the American Angus Association and focuses on the ranch-to-table movement of Certified Angus Beef.

Beef Leaders Institute started with a visit to the American Angus Association Headquarters in St. Joseph, Missouri. The group then traveled to six states visiting everything from a feed yard in Nebraska to ST Genetics to see some of the top Angus bulls in the country. Participants finished the week at the Certified Angus Beef Headquarters in Ohio where they toured the culinary center and participated in a team cooking competition.

McCaleb expressed his gratitude for the opportunity to attend the Beef Leaders Institute and was especially appreciative after seeing all the links in our food chain. After attending this educational experience he was amazed, stating, “So many cattle are needed to feed this country and the world. Every producer, from a small cattleman in Smith County, TN to a large rancher in Texas, we are all important and necessary.” Most of all, Jake appreciated the opportunity to meet new people who shared his passion for the cattle industry while learning what their struggles and successes looked like in their part of the world. “Networking with cattlemen and cattlewomen from across North America was invaluable,” he said. “I am honored to have had the chance to participate and bring back new knowledge and connections to Smith County.”

We are proud of Jake for taking part in this awesome opportunity, and encourage all of our Smith County producers to get involved in continuing education through UT Extension, breed associations, or other agricultural organizations!

For more information about other agriculture-related topics, contact the UT Extension office at 615-735-2900.

Pray4TN Joint Resolution 803 Passed

Resolution 803 calls for 31 days of prayer and fasting in Tennessee beginning July 1, 2024. It passed overwhelmingly in the state Senate 27-1 and in the House 82-6, and was signed by Governor Bill Lee.

The legislators also acknowledged the many crises and problems plaguing our state and America and that seeking God through personal “humbling” and “penitence” is a way to resolve those issues. The legislators named many specific moral issues that have been causing Tennesseans and Americans suffering, such as violence committed upon its citizens by other citizens and non-citizens; violent crime in schools; the “violent evil” of human trafficking “that enslaves lives;” deadly fentanyl which “flows uncontrollably” across the southern border; drug addiction that “overwhelms families;” 9,000 children in the state in need of foster care; and “evidence of corruption in our federal government” which impacts every Tennessean.

A special event will be held at the Historic Smith County Courthouse at 2 p.m. on July 16th to specifically pray for Smith County, Tennessee and the Nation in regards to the the issues addressed in the resolution.

Business Spotlight – Treehouse Treasures

Treehouse Treasures is an eclectic new store offering just as the name promises plenty of treasures.  It is 2400 square feet of shopping featuring over 35 vendors.  They offer antiques, glassware, quilts, farmhouse items, crafts, and much more.

The business opened on March 1, 2024.  It is owned by Rita Key a Smith County resident for over 33 years and where she has raised a family with her husband on a small farm. She has enjoyed shopping and collecting antiques for the last 40 years and is excited to share her passion with others.  She loves talking with people and hearing other’s stories and passion for collecting.

Treehouse Treasures recently joined the Smith County Chamber of Commerce who helped them celebrate their business with a Ribbon Cutting.  Smith County Mayor, Jeff Mason, Smith County Chamber Director, Billy Woodard, vendors, shoppers, community members, family and friends joined the celebration and special open house.

Treehouse Treasures is open Monday-Friday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Check out their facebook page for new and featured items. The store is located at 320 Main Street, Carthage TN. You can call them at 615-735-7494 .

Micro Wrestling “Big Little Brawlers” at Smith County Ag Center on July 28

The Micro Wrestling Federation, as seen on Discovery Channel’s hit TV show “Big, Little Brawlers”, will be coming to Smith County on July 28, 2024. The two hour show begins at 6 p.m. at the Smith County Ag Center.

This will be a fundraiser hosted by the Gordonsville Tigers Football Booster. Tickets can be purchased at

https://www.microwrestling.com/events/smithcountyagcenter

Come out and support your Tigers and enjoy a fantastic night of entertainment. Concessions and merchandise will be available as well.

Annual Sales Tax Holiday Weekend July 26 – July 28.

Save the date and save! The State of Tennessee’s annual sales tax holiday weekend will take place Friday, July 26 through Sunday, July 28.

During this holiday, Tennesseans can save nearly 10 percent on qualifying clothing, school supplies, and computers. Tennesseans can purchase clothing and school supplies tax-free if they are priced at $100 or less and buy computers tax-free if they are priced at $1500 or less. Qualifying items may be purchased online and in stores.

“Tennessee’s commitment to strong fiscal stewardship has allowed our state to cut taxes and put dollars back in the pockets of hardworking Tennesseans,” said Gov. Bill Lee. “I encourage every Tennessee family to take advantage of back-to-school savings and thank the General Assembly for partnering to provide direct financial relief for taxpayers.”

“With the start of the school year around the corner, we encourage Tennessee families to take advantage of these savings,” Revenue Commissioner David Gerregano said. “This is the only sales tax holiday this year.”

For more information about the sales tax holiday, including a list of qualifying items, visit www.tntaxholiday.com. You can also call 615-253-0600 or email revenue.support@tn.gov with questions.

The Department of Revenue is responsible for the administration of state tax laws and motor vehicle title and registration laws and the collection of taxes and fees associated with those laws. The Department collects about 87 percent of total state revenue. During the 2023 fiscal year, it collected nearly $22 billion in state taxes and fees and more than $4.7 billion in taxes and fees for local governments. To learn more about the Department, visit www.tn.gov/revenue.

Gordonsville Church of Christ VBS on Saturday, July 27th

Join us for a fun-filled day of VBS where we will learn about how God is our Rock! We will be studying lessons from the Bible that demonstrate the strength and power of our God. There will be classes for all ages, games, and crafts! Lunch will be served as well. Tell your friends, and make plans to join us on July 27th!

‘Rally on the River’ at the 2024 Smith County Fair

On Thursday, July 4th three candidates for office participated in the Rally on the River at the Smith County Fair.

The State House District House 40 candidate Daniel Hawthorn (Democrat), Incumbent State House District House 40 Michael Hale and Smith County School Board District 2 candidate Sarah Hawthorne participated. The Rally on the River was sponsored by Smith County Insider with Smith County Chamber Director Billy Woodard acting as the moderator.You can watch the video below.

2024 Smith County Fair Dog & Cat Show Winners

The Dog and Cat Show at the Smith County Fair was held on Saturday morning, July 6th. Several dogs participated in the the show sponsored by Smith County Animal Clinic. Over a dozen dogs participated in seven divisions.

Congratulations to the winners listed below: (handler – dog))

Sporting Division

1st Place – Gabe Harvile – Rose

2nd Place – Emma Baker – Finley

3rd Miranda Pickles – Chuck Norris

Working/Utility

1st Place – Samantha Bussell – Windsor

2nd Place – Kaybree Denney – Willow

3rd Place – Crissy Cannon – Reecie

Hounds

1st Place – Melissa Thomson – Decker

2nd Place – Emery Shoemake – Remi Jane

3rd Place – Misti Brewer – Ginger

Toy Terrier- Non Sporting

1st Place – Kaelyn Ward – Puddin

2nd Place – Richard Brooks – Jack

Misc/Mixed Breeds

1st Place – Melanie Bowman – Orrie

2nd Place – Ella Dixon – “Frank” aka Frankenstein

Best Dressed

1st Place Kaelyn Ward – Puddin

Jr. Handler

1st Place – Kaybree Denny – Willow

2nd Place – Gabe Harville – Rosie

3rd Place – Maddox Nester – Nola

3rd Place – Emma Baker – Finley

Best in Show Cat – Patti Rohlfes – Dover

The Dog and Cat show was sponsored by Smith County Animal Clinic. To schedule an appointment call 615-735-3330. Many more pictures of the Dog and Cat Show and other Smith County Fair events visit the Smith County Fair Facebook page.

Commodities Distribution Tuesday, July 23rd 9-11a.m.

The Upper Cumberland Human Resource Agency (UCHRA) will hold a commodities distribution for Smith County on Tuesday, July 23, from 9 until 11 a.m. at the Smith County Agricultural Center. Sign-up will be available at the distribution site.

The Upper Cumberland Human Resource Agency does not discriminate on the basis of age, race, sex, color, national origin, religion, or disability in admission to, access to, or operations of its programs, services, or activities. This project is funded under a Grant Contract with the State of Tennessee.

Smith County Mr. & Miss Baby Fairest of the Fair Pageants 2024

The 2024 Mr. and Miss Baby Fairest of the Fair Pageants were held at the Smith County Fair on Saturday , July 6, 2024. The pageants were divided into three divisions include boys and girls from each of the age ranges 0-6 months, 7-15 months and 16-23 months.

(L-R) Becket Gray Baker and Jett Allen Craighead.

Two boys 0-6 months participated. Mr. Baby Fairest of the Fair (0-6 months) Winner was Becket Gray Baker and 1st Runner-up, Jett Allen Craighead.

Reba Jayne Horton, Mary Mae Louise Deason and Sadie Belle Sircy

Seven girls 0-6 months participated. Miss Baby Fairest of the Fair (0-6 months) Winner was Mary Mae Louise Deason, 1st Runner-up was Reba Jayne Horton and 2nd Runner Up was Sadie Belle Sircy. Sadie Belle Sircy also won Peoples Choice. Remi Saige Watts won Most Photogenic for girls 0-6 months.

(L-R) Ashton Dewayne Key, Rilee Allan Freeman, Ryder Zane Hess and Daxton Forrester

Four boys 7-15 months participated. Mr. Baby Fairest of the Fair (7-15 months) Winner Rilee Allan Freeman, 1st Runner-up was Ryder Zane Hess and 2nd Runner-up was a tie with Daxton Forrester and Ashton Dewaye Key.

Merci Gillispie, Anna Vae Oaklee Cheatham and Hallie Blair Taylor

Nine girls 7-15 months participated. Miss Baby Fairest of the Fair (7-15 months) Winner was Anna Vae Oaklee Cheatham, 1st Runner-up was Hallie Blair Taylor and 2nd Runner-up was Merci Gillispie. Hindrix Ray Anderson won Peoples Choice and Merci Gillispie won Most Photogenic.

Makenna Paige Farley, Saie Wade and Mya Elliott Hodnett

Ten girls 16-23 months participated. Miss Baby Fairest of the Fair (16-23 months) Winner was Sadie Wade 1st Runner-up was Mya Elliott Hodnett and 2nd Runner-up was Makenna Paige Farley. Scarlett Rose Candler won Peoples Choice and Delta Faye Ward won Most Photogenic.

U.S. Representative John Rose Announces July Local Office Hours

U.S. Representative John Rose’s (TN-6) district staff will hold a series of local office hours for constituents to connect directly with caseworkers and receive assistance with federal agencies throughout the month of July.

During the local office hours, district staff will be available to answer questions and assist constituents with federal casework, such as social security and veterans’ benefits, steps for obtaining a passport, and more. Local office hours occur monthly. If you have questions, please contact one of Representative Rose’s offices so a staff member may help you.

“We are ready to assist constituents with federal casework and welcome anyone with questions to sit down with staff,” said Representative Rose. “My goal is to make the expertise of my staff and the resources of this office easily accessible to every person I represent.”

Details for local office hours can be found below and on Representative Rose’s website.

Tuesday, July 16, 2024

TIME: 1:00pm-2:00pm

WHAT: Smith County Local Office Hours
LOCATION: Smith County Admin Building, 122 Turner High Circle, Carthage, TN 37030

WHO: Representative Rose will be represented by Field Representative Lou Nave during this visit.