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For many in Oklahoma, 4-H is the only extracurricular activity, and it has been so for several generations.

Oklahoma 4-H is dedicated to helping Oklahoma youth, families and communities reach their full potential. By providing hands-on programming and events in a large variety of projects, 4-H is not only helping youth learn the life skills they need to be the leaders of tomorrow, but it is also teaching its members they can lead today and can make tangible, significant changes in their clubs, their communities, their state and their world.

Currently, there are many schools in the Okmulgee County area that are without an active 4-H program, so Henryetta resident Brooke Smith decided that this needed to change.

“We live on the dividing line between Henryetta and Wilson school districts and we live on the Henryetta side. I sent my children to school at Henryetta for several reasons but the only drawback was no AG program,” said Smith.  “I showed cattle growing up at Wilson and wanted them to have the same opportunities that I had. So trying to get a 4-H club started for those schools without such programs or clubs seemed the best step for that.”

Smith is now working with the OSU County Extension to create a club open for any child in the county. An ice cream social is being on August 27 at Nichols Park for any child or parent who has questions about the program.

The event will begin at 6:30 at the second entrance to the park at the playground.

“Come on down to the park and find out what 4-H is all about. Whether you enjoy working with animals, building robots, taking photographs, shooting sports, singing or even collecting bugs, Oklahoma 4-H has a place for you!” said Smith.

For more information contact Brooke Smith at (918)-650-2544.

Interstate 35 is closed from Ardmore (mile marker 33) to Davis (mile marker 51) for an undetermined amount of time due to high water and a rock slide in the Arbuckle Mountains. Traffic is being diverted to US Highway 177 at this time, however, the Caddo Creek Bridge on US 177 is down to one lane so heavy traffic congestion can be expected due to the increase in traffic for the area. An alternate route for Travel from Oklahoma City to Dallas is highly recommended. Possible alternate routes are Highway 69/75 through Durant  or Interstate 44 through Lawton.


One of the most poputar country bands of the early '90s, Little Texas was Infiuenced by modem country
outfits like Alabama and Restless Heart, as well as country-rock groups like the Eagles. The band came
together in pairs. Porter Howell and Duane Propes started playing together in high school in 1983,
then they both moved to Nashville to go to college. Tom Rushlow and Dwayne O'Brien fi rst performed
together in Arlington, TX, in 1984. Rushlow moved to Nashville, and O'Brien followed a couple years
later, after finishing his degree. Del Gray and Brady Seals had performed together with Josh Logan, and
they all came together in November of 1988.

Finally settling on the name Little Texas, the group landed a contract with Warner Bros. in 1989 and
toured heavily to help build an audience. Their debut single, ·Some Guys Have All the Love: was
released in 1991 and quickly hit the Top Ten, as did its follow-up, "First Tome for Everything: Finally,
the group's debut album, also titled First Time for Everything, was released in 1992. It spawned three
further hits In ·You and Forever and Me" (their first Top Five single), "What Were You Thlnkln'?: and
"I'd Rather Miss You." Their 1993 follow-up album, Big Time, was a smash, selling nearly three million
copies and spinning off two Top Five country hits in "What Might Have Been" and "God Blessed Texas."
The third single, the Seals-sung "My Love," became Little Texas' first number one hit, though all three
eventually reached number one on the Nashville Radio and Records chart. Released in 1994. Kick a
Little was another platinum success, with two Top Five singles Including the Utle track and "Amy's Back
in Austin ."

In 1994, Seals departed for a solo career and was replaced by multi-instrumentalist Jeff Huskins,
formerly of Clint Black's band; in 1995, the band issued Greatest Hits, which featured the newly
recorded Top Five single "Life Goes On." Little Texas took a bit of a break In 1996, only playing about
100 shows that year as opposed to the 30D-plus dates they'd been doing for years. They also recorded
their third album, lillie Texas, during this time, but the years of touring had already taken their toll on
the band, and in 1997 they decided to go on hiatus. After several years, the band members reunited and
recruited vocalist Steven Troy. The newly reassembled group launched the Hello Again tour in 2004.
Three years later, Littte Texas released Missing Years, their first studio effort in ten years. The Very Best
of Little Texas: Live and Loud was also released in 2007. - Steve Huey & Sean Westergaard, Rovi

An early fundraiser to start raising money for the "Yes for State Question 777" campaign was held this past week at the Yukon home of Bob Funk, sponsored by the Oklahoma Farm Bureau. Several dozen representatives of the major farm organizations in Oklahoma, state lawmakers, agribusiness leaders and more were a part of the gathering, who heard from Forrest Lucas, the founder of Lucas Oil and Protect the Harvest, who called the battle to pass State Question 777 vitally important to not just Oklahoma, but to agricultural interests across the United States.

Lucas called Oklahoma agricultural leadership and the state lawmakers who worked to approve HJR 1012 in the Oklahoma State House and Senate this year very courageous for being willing to stand up to anti production agricultural interests that have lots of resources that have allowed them to get their way in several states around the country.

Tom Buchanan, President of the Oklahoma Farm Bureau, told Farm Director Ron Hays after the short program at the fundraiser that he is excited to get the ball rolling in communicating the need for this addition to the Oklahoma State Constitution. If approved by a vote of the people in November 2016, State Question 777 will amend the state constitution and declare that the right to farm and ranch in this state will be protected. The specific language of the state question has yet to be developed- and will be written by State Attorney General Scott Pruitt.

Buchanan and Brian Klippenstein of Protect the Harvest both told Hays that passage of this state question will be of great benefit to future generations of farmers and ranchers in the state- but will also be very important to consumers, who will benefit from making sure that groups won't be able to prevent farmers and ranchers from being able to avail themselves of the most productive and safe food production practices- helping assure a continued safe, affordable and adequate food supply for generations to come.

Protect the Harvest helped with the Missouri campaign of a year ago that passed a similar question in that state- and Brian Klippenstein says what they learned in that campaign will help them offer useful advice to the Oklahoma effort to get a yes vote. He expects a well funded "no" campaign and says that the proponents must start right now to mount a high quality, aggressive campaign to explain to Oklahoma voters why they need to vote yes.

He believes that "safety, affordability and choice" will be three concepts that will resonate well with consumers- and it is important that the Yes campaign convice voters that a postive vote for SQ777 will assure them of those things in the food supply of the state.

OKLAHOMA CITY – People in Atoka, Bryan, Comanche, Cleveland, Grady, Johnston, Kiowa, Le Flore, McClain, McCurtain, Oklahoma, Pittsburg and Pottawatomie counties affected by the recent severe storms, straight-line winds, flooding and tornadoes occurring May 5 through June 4 can use several easy ways to register for state and federal disaster assistance.

Disaster assistance from the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management (OEM), the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) may include grants and/or disaster assistance loans to help pay for temporary housing, home repairs and replacement costs.

Low-interest SBA disaster loans may be available to businesses of all sizes as well as certain private nonprofit organizations. Homeowners and renters are also eligible for SBA loans for losses not fully compensated by insurance or other payments and do not duplicate benefits from other agencies or organizations.

You can apply at www.disasterassistance.gov, or via telephone by calling 1-800-621-3362 or (TTY) 1-800-462-7585. If you use 711-Relay or Video Relay Services call 1-800-621-3362. The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. seven days a week until further notice.

Registering with FEMA is required for federal aid, even if the person has registered with another disaster relief organization such as the American Red Cross, local officials or churches. Registrants with FEMA must use the name that appears on their Social Security card. Applicants will be asked to provide:

    •    Social Security number;
    •    Address of the damaged home or apartment and proof the applicant lived there at the time of the        disaster;
    •    Description of the damage;
    •    Information about insurance coverage;
    •    A current contact telephone number;
    •    An address where you can get mail; and
    •    Bank account and routing numbers (if you want direct deposit of any financial assistance).

For more information on Oklahoma disaster recovery, click http://www.fema.gov/disaster/4222 or visit OEM at www.oem.ok.gov.


Dorothy Burden and Susan Barnett were hostesses for the meeting of the Okemah Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution on May 19 at Pepino’s Restaurant in Okemah.

Geneva Bertges’s application for membership was recently approved by DAR National Headquarters, and she was installed as a new member of the chapter by Chaplain, Susan Barnett. Regent Velda Jo Bradley presented her with a membership packet, and she was graciously welcomed by members into the chapter.

Regent Bradley proudly reported that three awards were presented to the Okemah chapter at the DAR state convention which she, Ann Jackson, Sherrie Case, Joy Hlavaty, and associate member Janelda Cook attended in April. The awards were first place for print coverage of Constitution Week, second place for Children of the American Revolution Support, and the Level I Chapter Achievement Award. She presented the certificates to historian, Gene Merideth, for placement in the chapter scrapbook.

Vice Regent Ann Jackson announced that the Okemah chapter will be celebrating the 89th anniversary of its founding next year. Emma B. Kennedy of Okemah invited nine ladies into her home to organize the chapter, and the chapter was chartered on February 9, 1927, with twelve members. Next year’s activities will include a commemoration of the founding.

Dorothy Burden gave a most interesting program on the history of the Creek Nation which included information on the Trail of Tears and the transportation of fire from each tribal town that formed the “One Fire.” She based most of her presentation on the book, Sacred Revolt, by Joel Martin.

The chapter was adjourned for the summer, and the next meeting will be September 15 at 11:30 a.m. at Pepino’s Restaurant in Okemah.

Members present were Gene Merideth, Judy Williams, Judith Drennan, Margaret Parks, Rebecca Hold, Geneva Bertges, Vice-Regent Ann Jackson, and Regent Velda Bradley; prospective members Patricia Funchess and Pam Ferrell; and hostesses Susan Barnett and Dorothy Burden.

Any woman 18 years old or older who can prove she is descended from a Revolutionary War Soldier or Patriot is eligible to join the Daughters of the American Revolution. Prospective members are welcome to attend our meetings. Contact Regent Velda Jo Bradley, 918-623-1550, or Registrar Rebecca Hold, 918-652-7092, for assistance. More information is available on the DAR website, www.dar.org.


You will want to head to Henryetta Tuesday May 26 for a mesquite treat on the Johnsonville Big Taste Grill who is on a mission to give back to the communities that have made them a success today.

Johnsonville helps raise money for local charities and will be helping out the Henryetta Relay for Life from 3 to 7 p.m. at the Homeland grocery store parking lot.

The Okmulgee News Network spoke with store manager Phil Goza who gave us some insight on todays happenings. To date, the Big Taste Grill program has raised more than $3.5 million for a variety of charities nationwide for organizations just like this. In 2014 alone, more than $136,000 has been raised nationwide and they’ve served more than 110,000 brats during its 9-month tour. Go visit Homeland and the Johnsonville gang and order up a Bratworth for a good cause.

Also the Big Country 99.5 will be on site for music and there will be a talent contest you can enter for only $10 at 6 p.m.



Student respondant, speaker Andrew Cook

Dr. Glen D. Johnson was the guest speaker at OSU Institute of Technology’s 200th graduation. Johnson is the chief executive officer for the Oklahoma State System of Higher Education. Johnson leads a state system comprised of 25 state colleges and universities, 10 constituent agencies, two university centers, and independent colleges and universities coordinated with the state system. He reports to a constitutional board whose nine members are appointed by the governor and confirmed by the Senate.

Johnson provides leadership on matters relating to standards for Oklahoma higher education, courses and programs of study, budget allocations for institutions, fees and tuition, and strategic planning. He is responsible for an annual higher education budget in excess of $1.9 billion as well as the state endowment fund, with a market value over $664.2 million. He is responsible for OneNet, which is Oklahoma’s most advanced technology network designed to provide the infrastructure to support high-speed broadband services, as well as the Oklahoma College Assistance Program, which has guaranteed more than one million student loans exceeding $2.5 billion in insured debt.

Johnson directs 20 statewide scholarship programs as well as other programs, including the State Regents’ Summer Academies in Math and Science program and the statewide GEAR UP efforts.

View graduation ceremony below:

The 200th Graduating Class:

The ceremony was held at Covelle Hall at 2:00 p.m. on Friday, Apr. 24. The speakers during the commencement ceremony were Chancellor Glen Johnson and student respondant, Andrew Cook.

OKMULGEE, Okla. — The Muscogee (Creek) Nation Office of the Principal Chief learned today that the removal petition being circulated by a Muscogee (Creek) citizen was not filed by the 5 p.m. deadline that was issued by the MCN Election Board.

Principal Chief George Tiger has faith in the process of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation Constitution and had every confidence that the small group behind the petition would not garner enough signatures for its purpose.

Tiger looks forward to continuing his work as the advocate, leader and Mvskoke citizen he is. As all of this has unfolded, Tiger has never allowed this to impact his service to the Muscogee (Creek) citizens. Tiger has remained dedicated to his work for the Muscogee (Creek) people and never faltered while doing the work he loves for his people.

“If there was even an inkling of any wrongdoing, I wouldn’t have made my announcement for reelection,” Tiger said. "I’m very humbled and grateful for the outpouring of encouragement I have received from hundreds of Muscogee (Creek) citizens. And it should be noted that every principal chief who preceded me went through a petition. It’s a sign of our healthy and active exercise of our tribal constitution at work and it also demonstrates that our citizens have a voice in our government.

“My administration and I will continue to work to advance our Nation as we grow and unify for the betterment of our Nation and our people, because that is the Mvskoke Way!”

Beggs Elementary Awards 008

Beggs Elementary Principal, Nancy McCune is pictured with the fourth grade recipients of the Masonic Student of Today awards: Jacob Fowler and Jillian Remington. These awards were presented by Burt Jones with the Beggs Masonic Lodge at the awards assembly on May 5th at Beggs Elementary School.

Beggs Elementary Awards 010

Beggs Elementary Principal, Nancy McCune, is pictured with the recipient of the Beggs Elementary Teacher of the Year Award, Jennifer Duck. Mrs. Duck, a fourth grade teacher, is also the recipient of the Masonic Teacher of Today Award for 2015. She has been a teacher with the Beggs School District for eighteen years.

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