Upcoming American Red Cross Blood Drives In The Four-County Area


The Memorial Day weekend kicks off the unofficial start of summer, when people’s thoughts turn to vacations and relaxing a bit from normal routines. But the American Red Cross is asking for blood donors to keep appointments on their calendars, especially during the summer months and especially near holidays.

Type O blood donors are especially needed.

Blood donations are critical for people waiting for lifesaving care. Download the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1.800.733.2767) to schedule a time to give.

As a small thank you, the Red Cross is giving Red Cross beach towels to all donors (while supplies last) through May 31. May donors also will be automatically entered for a chance to win a trip for two to the 2023 MLB All-Star game in Seattle. The prize includes two tickets to the game, round-trip airfare, four-night hotel stay, $750 gift card and more.

Those who come to give June 1-30 will receive a $10 gift card by email to a merchant of their choice. Plus, they’ll also be automatically entered for a chance to win a backyard theater package including a projector and screen, projector tripod, smokeless firepit, Adirondack chair set and a movie night snack package.


Here’s a list of upcoming blood drives in the four-county area between now and June 15:



5/30/2023: 10 a.m. – 2:30 p.m., Central Baptist Church, 2574 Ruin Creek Rd.

6/8/2023: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., Raleigh Road Baptist Church, 3892 Raleigh Rd.



5/26/2023: 2 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Creedmoor United Methodist Church, 214 Park Ave.



6/1/2023: 2 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Macon Baptist Church, 159 Church St.




6/3/2023: 9 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., Rock Spring Baptist Church, 34 Rock Springs Church Rd.


How to donate blood 

To make an appointment, simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1.800.733.2767) or enable the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device to make an appointment or for more information. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.

N.C.’s Ag Impact Keeps Growing…And Growing

-information courtesy of N.C. Dept. of Agriculture and Consumer Services

Maybe you’ve seen the bumper sticker that reads “If You’ve Eaten Today, Thank a Farmer.”

The impact that farmers and farming have in this state is huge. And Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler has put that statement in measurable terms – for the first time, the economic impact of agriculture and agribusiness industry in North Carolina has topped $100 billion.

The exact figure, in fact, is $103.2 billion.

The numbers come from Dr. Mike Walden, N.C. State University economist and professor emeritus. These numbers reflect the economic value of growing, processing and delivering food, natural fiber and forestry products, Troxler said in a press release, and were calculated using the latest USDA statistics.

“When I took office in 2005, the economic impact of agriculture and agribusiness was $59 billion and $100 billion seemed like a good goal to work toward,” Troxler said. “In 2016, I made a prediction that North Carolina’s agriculture and agribusiness industry would soon reach $100 billion,” he added.

“I’m proud to say that we’ve reached that goal and surpassed last year’s economic impact by more than 11 percent. Reaching this milestone is a big accomplishment for everyone in agriculture and agribusiness and proves how much we can accomplish when we are all pulling together.”

Agriculture is North Carolina’s No. 1 industry, employing about one-fifth of the state’s workforce. Last year’s economic impact figure was $92.9 billion.

“We are blessed to have a strong, resilient, and engaged agriculture community that includes farmers, agribusiness owners, commodity associations, agricultural associations and effective leadership in the North Carolina General Assembly,” Troxler said. “I can assure you we will set new goals and keep North Carolina agriculture growing.”

Franklin County Manager Proposes Nearly $112 Million 2023-24 Budget

Residents of Franklin County can expect some increases in fees next year, but no increase in the property tax rate if the proposed $111 million 2023-24 budget is approved by the Franklin Board of Commissioners next month.

Manager Kim Denton presented the budget on Monday, May 15. A copy can be found at www.franklincountync.gov. A copy also is available in the office of the clerk to the board, 113 Market St., Louisburg.

The budget focuses on essential needs for maintaining and growing county services, proposes the formation of a Community Care team to addresses the opioid funding strategies, adds vehicles to accomplish service delivery and recommends increases in water and sewer rates, according to a press release from James Hicks, Franklin County public information officer.

In remarks to the board, Denton said “Franklin County must continue an appropriate level of preparation for the growth the county is experiencing. Being identified as the fastest-growing county statistically in the Triangle brings added emphasis to the growth preparation that is already underway.”

County leadership is recommending the addition of 20 new staff positions across the organization including four full-time positions in the sheriff’s office and one position in the Emergency Medical Services departments to will oversee a newly created second peak demand 12-hour shift with two paramedics and two EMTs. Additional positions in Animal Services, Environmental Health and Social Services also are recommended. If the proposed budget is adopted, the sheriff’s office will get additional patrol vehicles and will be able to replace other high-mileage vehicles currently in use. EMS will get an additional ambulance as well.

Franklin County Schools would get more than $25 million which includes $1.5 million for capital outlay. The school system had requested $28 million and has indicated at need for $100 million over the next 10 years.

“Education funding has been the most challenging topic to address because the provision of education in North Carolina and the guidelines and funding formulas are all evolving,” Denton said.

At the May 15 meeting, commissioners requested documentation addressing the need for additional capital funds; county staff will work with FCS staff from FCS to develop a Capital Report.

The budget also recommends a 2 percent cost-of-living-adjustment for all employees, both full-time and part-time, beginning in September 2023 and public safety positions in the sheriff’s office, detention center and emergency communications also would get a salary bump to help hire and retain staff.

Franklin County will be receiving National Opioid Settlement payments annually for 18 years.  The County is recommending the creation of a Community Care Team – a collaborative, cross-departmental team – that will coordinate the County’s response to the County Manager’s Health Initiative, opioid overdose epidemic, substance abuse and mental health. The team will be comprised of a Community Care Administrator, Community Care Coordinator, Licensed Clinical Social Worker and a Peer Support Specialist.

A public hearing for the FY24 Budget will be conducted at 7:00 p.m. on Monday, June 5, 2022, at Franklin Plaza during the regularly scheduled Board of Commissioners meeting. The public portal for budget comments is currently available on the Finance Department’s page of the Franklin County website: www.franklincountync.gov. Any public comments received through the portal will be shared by the clerk to the board with the board of commissioners prior to the June 5 public hearing.

NC State Board of Elections

Specifics On New Voter Photo ID Rules

In response to the state’s new voter ID law, the state board of elections has issued information that may be helpful for citizens to keep in mind before their next trip to the polls.

Voters will be asked to show a photo ID, starting with the 2023 municipal elections. A driver’s license or other photo ID will be accepted.

Those without a photo ID can get a No Fee ID Card from NCDMV and soon, it is expected that a free ID will be available from your local board of elections office.

When a voter checks in to a polling place, poll workers will ask for an ID, and they are supposed to look to make sure the photo reasonably resembles the voter; the address doesn’t have to match the voter registration records

It is important to note that all voters will be allowed to vote with or without a photo ID. Those without an ID will use the ID exception form and a provisional ballot.

For complete details, visit ncsbe.gov/voter-ID and “FAQ: Voter ID” to learn more.

TownTalk: United Way Kicks Off 2023 Fund Allocation

The United Way of Vance County is preparing for its 2023 funds allocation.

Deadline for submitting an application for funding is Friday, May 26, according to Jane P. Haithcock, secretary/treasurer of the organization.

Non-profit agencies or those with an IRS tax-exempt status are eligible to submit applications, which can be found at unitedwayvance.org.

Completed applications will be accepted in one of two ways: mail to United Way of Vance County, P.O. Box 1352, Henderson, NC 27536 or email to unitedwayofvance@gmail.com.

If you have any questions or concerns, please Contact Haithcock at the above email address or phone 252.432.3778 for more information.



Upcoming Blood Drives In The Area

May is Trauma Awareness Month, and American Red Cross encourages individuals to sign up to give blood at upcoming local drives as a way to help in situations where every second counts.

Blood products – blood, plasma and platelets – can provide lifesaving care, but hospitals often struggle to keep sufficient supplies on hand.

Did you know that Type O is the universal blood type? Donors who have Type O Negative blood are especially needed now, according to information from the local Red Cross office in Raleigh.

Type O Negative blood can be used in emergency situations when there’s no time to determine a patient’s blood type; Type O Positive blood can be transfused to Rh-Positive patients of any blood type.

As a thank-you, all donors who come in to give blood between now and May 19 will get a $10 e-gift card. And anyone who gives at any time during the month of May will automatically be entered for a chance to win a trip for two to the MLB All-Star Game in Seattle, WA.

The prize package includes two tickets to the 2023 MLB® All-Star Game® thanks to the support of Fanatics, round-trip airfare, four-night hotel accommodations, a $750 gift card and more. Additionally, those who come to give May 20-31 will receive an exclusive Red Cross beach towel, while supplies last.

The prizes are just a small way to say thank you to donors who give blood, but the larger reward is knowing that your donation helps keep hospital blood banks full and ready to help in the event of a medical trauma.

Visit RedCrossBlood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1.800.733.2767).


Upcoming blood drives:



5/15/2023: 10 a.m. – 2:30 p.m., Maria Parham Health, 566 Ruin Creek Rd.

5/23/2023: 9 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., Henderson Family YMCA, 380 Ruin Creek Rd.

5/30/2023: 10 a.m. – 2:30 p.m., Central Baptist Church, 2574 Ruin Creek Rd.



5/26/2023: 2 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Creedmoor United Methodist Church, 214 Park Ave.



5/22/2023: 11 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Senior Citizens Center, 279 S. Bickett Blvd.


Franklin Commissioners Seek Residents To Serve On Variety Of Advisory Groups

-Information courtesy of Franklin County Public Information Officer James F. Hicks, III

Franklin County has numerous opportunities for citizens to participate and serve on advisory boards, councils and commissions. An online application can be found at https://www.franklincountync.gov/government/boards_and_commissions/index.php.

A printed application may be obtained by contacting Kristen G. King, Clerk to the Board, kking@franklincountync.gov or 919.496.5994. Applications should be received by June 22.

The county’s board of commissioners is asking for interested residents of Franklin County to consider joining any of the following:

Airport Advisory Council: The council makes recommendations regarding operations, marketing, strategic planning and other measures related to Triangle North Executive Airport. The board meets at least quarterly.

Board of Adjustment: The board is responsible for reviewing variance and administrative appeal requests and meets on a monthly basis as needed.

Department of Aging Advisory Board: The board advises staff of concerns of the elderly population. The board meets quarterly.

Economic Development Commission: The purpose of the commission is to assist in promoting economic development. The board meets every other month.

Emergency Medical Services Advisory Committee: The committee works to assure provisions of a high level of quality care and service to persons in need of emergency medical services in Franklin County. The board meets quarterly.

Historic Preservation Commission: This board works to conserve and preserve the heritage of the county through documentation and regulation of historic districts or landmarks, or through the acquisition of historic properties. The board meets monthly.

Library Board: The board advises on issues pertaining to library services. The board meets quarterly.

Parks and Recreation Advisory Board: The board advises on issues pertaining to parks and recreation and matters relating to recreational facilities. The board meets quarterly.

Planning Board: The board serves in an advisory capacity for rezonings, text amendments and policy documents guiding the County’s growth. The board meets on a monthly basis as needed.

Solid Waste Education Task Force: The task force develops strategies for encouraging activities that support recycling. The board meets every other month.

Tourism Development Authority: This board promotes tourism and works to build a stronger economic base for the creation of job opportunities specific to tourism-related activities and endeavors. Three members should be affiliated with businesses actively involved in collecting the occupancy tax, four shall be persons generally involved in cultural, educational, and/or hospitality industries. The board meets every other month.


VGCC Foundation Scholarship Priority Deadline May 31

-information courtesy of VGCC Public Information Officer Courtney Cissel

Scholarships offered through the Vance-Granville Community College Foundation for the 2023 Fall Academic Year are open for applicants. The priority deadline for full scholarship consideration for Fall 2023 is May 31, according to VGCC officials.

“We know our students are often already working, raising families, and going to college in their spare time,” VGCCF Executive Director Tanya Weary stated. “At VGCC, we work to help them graduate with as little debt as possible.”

The VGCC Foundation has more than 300 endowed scholarships based on a variety of factors – merit, financial need, degree choice and more. Scholarships are awarded individually to curriculum students based on criteria outlined for each award. Selection will be based on an overall assessment of academic performance, leadership skills, character and community service, according to a press statement from VGCC Public Information Officer Courtney Cissel.

Scholarship funding is limited, and completion of the application does not guarantee an award. All applicants must have a minimum of a 2.0 GPA to be considered for a VGCC Foundation scholarship; many scholarships require a minimum 3.0 GPA. Scholarship recipients are selected by a scholarship selection committee unless otherwise stipulated in the criteria of the scholarship.

The scholarships are made possible through the generous support of private citizens, organizations and businesses. To apply for VGCCF scholarships, visit www.vgcc.edu/fao/scholarships. For additional questions, contact foundation@vgcc.edu.


Area Chambers Name Winners Of 2022 Small Business Of The Year At May 3 Luncheon

Four local Chambers of Commerce announced the 2022 Small Business of the Year winners at a luncheon in Henderson Wednesday.

Vance County Chamber President Sandra Wilkerson presented Kilian Engineering with the award. What Michael Kilian began in 2001 with one employee has grown to five offices in Henderson and surrounding areas, Wilkerson said.

The firm is very interested in establishing local partnerships – from the new men’s shelter in Henderson to internships for local high school students.

“They do what they do because they want to do the right thing,” Wilkerson noted. Other groups the firm has sponsored include Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts and a recycling program, the proceeds of which are donated to McGregor Hall.

Rhonda Wells accepted the award on behalf of Kilian Engineering.

Henderson-Vance County Chamber of Commerce Photo L-R: Sandra Wilkerson, H-V Chamber President; Bobby Pegram; Rhonda Wells; Janelle Kilian; Shade Bolling; Bert Long, H-V Chamber Board Chair

In Granville County, Next Door Radio was named 2022 Small Business of the Year. Lauren Roberson, director of the Granville Chamber, called Trey Snide to the podium to accept the award.

“Trey is a pure asset to our community,” Roberson told the group of about 35 at the event. Snide and Next Door Radio give the community a platform to express ideas, opinions and more. “He’s one of the friendliest people you’ll ever meet,” Roberson added.

Franklin Chamber Executive Director Richie Veverka presented his award to the Youngsville ABC Store. Veverka said the store, which opened in 1971, has consistently given back to the community. In fact, he estimated that their giving back to various organizations across Franklin County has totaled more than $5.6 million.

Bridget Stanley, general manager, accepted the award. The new location opened at Youngsville Crossing on Capital Boulevard in 2021.

Person County’s Small Business of the Year is 1792 Beer Co., a bottle shop that strives to welcome its customers, whether they come to grab a beer at the bar or choose from the wide variety of beers, ciders and other beverages for purchase. In her remarks, Roxboro Area Chamber Executive Director Samantha Bagbey said owner Kyle James and his partner opened the business in 2019 – just in time to be told they had to shut down because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Now they’re thriving and really are staples of our community,” Bagbey said. The business is located at 106 N. Main St. in Roxboro.

Springtime Vaccines Protect Equines From Deadly Diseases

-information courtesy of the N.C. Department of Agriculture

If you’re a horse owner, listen up: It’s time to protect your equines against a couple of serious ailments.

N.C. Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler encourages equine owners to have their animals vaccinated against Eastern Equine Encephalomyelitis and West Nile Virus, two diseases with high mortality rates. Both, however, are preventable with a simple vaccination.

“Mosquito-breeding season in North Carolina lasts from spring until the first frost and horses are at risk if not properly vaccinated,” Troxler said. “EEE is fatal 90 percent of the time in horses and WNV has a fatality rate of 30 percent.”

Last year, there were no recorded cases of EEE and one case of WNV. In 2021, there were three recorded cases of EEE and two cases of WNV.

State Veterinarian Dr. Mike Martin recommends that equine owners talk to their veterinarians about an effective vaccination protocol to protect horses from mosquito-borne diseases. The combination vaccination initially requires multiple injections for horses, mules and donkeys that have no prior vaccination history.

Mosquitoes can breed in any puddle that lasts for more than four days, so removing any source of standing water can reduce the chance of exposing animals to WNV or EEE. Keeping horses in stalls at night, using insect screens and fans, and turning off lights after dusk can also help reduce exposure to mosquitoes. Insect repellants can be effective if used according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Symptoms of EEE include impaired vision, aimless wandering, head pressing, circling, inability to swallow, irregular staggering gait, paralysis, convulsions and death. Once a horse has been bitten by an infected mosquito, it could take between 3 and 10 days for symptoms to appear.

Symptoms of WNV include fever, weakness or paralysis of hind limbs, impaired vision, head pressing, seizures and aimless wandering.

People, horses and birds can become infected from a bite by a mosquito carrying these diseases, but there is no evidence that horses can transmit the viruses to other horses, birds or people through direct contact.

Equine care also includes keeping up-to-date on equine infectious anemia (EIA) testing, commonly referred to as the Coggins test. “Since January there have been 20 cases of EIA in North Carolina. There is no vaccine and no cure for this disease so testing annually is important,” Troxler added.

“It’s also a great time to make sure your animal is current on its rabies vaccination,” Troxler said. “In 2022, seven cases of livestock infected with rabies were reported to our Veterinary Division. Since January, we have had two positive cases in livestock. Historically, most of the cases have been in cows but all livestock are naturally curious animals, which puts them at risk for a bite if a rabid animal gets through their fence line.”