7 Departments Battle Stubborn Blaze Northwest Of Uniontown

Firefighters from seven fire departments battled a fire in northern Vernon Township for multiple days last week.
No one was injured in the fire that began as a large structure fire last Tuesday night (Nov. 14) on the 19-acre site owned by Charlotte W. Helt, who once operated the recycling center with her late husband, Roger W. Helt at 10770 E. County Road 125S.
The fire was first reported at the former Helt Enterprises-Recycling site north of Uniontown just before 11 p.m. Tuesday. Firefighters from several departments worked to extinguished the blaze, but it rekindled about two hours later and was still burning Thursday.
Crothersville-Vernon Township Fire Chief Ben Spencer said the cause of the fire remains under investigation. He said the Indiana State Fire Marshal’s office was called in to assist with the cause of the fire.
The fire was difficult to extinguish because of the materials involved, which included plastic, tires, pallets and other materials, he said.
The water firefighters sprayed on the burning plastic cooled it, which was essentially creating a shield for the flames burning underneath. That’s the type of fire that fire officials consider “deep-seated fires,” Spencer said.
Spencer said the fumes from the plastic burning was the primary concern of fire officials, and representatives from the Indiana Department of Environmental Management and Jackson County Health Department who were on scene.
The rural site is at the edge of a wooded area, but firefighters were able to stop the fire from spreading to that area. Rainy conditions in the morning and afternoon also helped keep the fire contained.
This is not the first fire on the property. A fire was reported in April 2000 when the site still operated. That fire involved similar materials.
The Seymour Fire Department and Grassy Fork, Jackson-Washington, Brownstown, Redding and Hamilton Township fire departments assisted with the fire.

First You Get A Turkey…

Crothersville First Graders Offer Recipes for Their Favorite thanksgiving Dish

In an annual Thanksgiving tradition, the Times presents Crothersville first grader recipes for the holiday meal. We thank teachers Ashley Spicer and Karra Lucas for their help with this writing assignment.

Chicken Jadie Blair
Put it in the oven for 5 minutes. I will play with toys and wait. Then do my homework. Take is out of the oven and have Thanksgiving and eat.

Turkey Mae Breedlove
Mom puts green stuff on the turkey. Cook it for 2 minutes. Put it in a pot. Then take it out and share it with the family.

Birthday Cake (because it’s when my birthday is) William Burns
Mom and mamaw work together to make a birthday cake. I always want vanilla, so they put vanilla it.

Turkey Donavan Chastian
I think you need salt and pepper and that green stuff. Put all that on the turkey. Put it in a crock pot or oven for 125 minutes.

Turkey Kayleb Clayton
Add a little touch of salt and one piece of ham. That’s it!

Turkey Abigail Davis
Buy a turkey and stuff it with vegetables. Then put it in the oven for 10 hours. Then eat it!

Chicken wings Langston Davis
Kill a chicken. Cook the chicken for probably like 8 seconds. Get it out of the microwave and then eat it. It’s so yummy!

Mashed potatoes Brooklynn Wilson
You need potatoes and a pan to fry them in. Then mash them down. Then eat them.

Mashed Potatoes Carlie Turner
Mix the potatoes and mash and squish them. Take the peeling off and squish them together again. Take a mixer and mix it all together. Put pepper in it.

Pineapple Turkey Jaerin Vernon
Mamaw puts pineapple on a turkey. Put it in the oven for 16 minutes. Check it. When it’s done it looks yummy!

Corn Charlie Hollan
Put corn in a pan. Put it on the stove for 2 minutes. Then it is done, done, done!

Turkey Hannah Hyland
Get it out of the bag. Cook it for 20 seconds. Take it out of the oven. Eat it and use forks.

Chicken Kalli McIntosh
Put it in the oven or microwave for 10 minutes. Get it out and then you can eat it.

Turkey Hendrix McKinney
You bake it in the oven for 10 minutes. Then pull it out of the oven. Eat it!

Deer Mason Muncy
You cut all the yucky stuff off it. Put it in a pot with hot water. Cut it up in squares a fry it.

Pumpkin Pice Owen Prince
Take a pumpkin and cut it. Then make it look brown. Make it mushy. Make a crust and then seal it with some more crust. Then put it in the oven for 50 minutes. After all that time take it out and enjoy it.

Ham Chase Roberts
Buy the meat. Cook it in the stove for 20 minutes. Get in out of the stove. Eat it!

Mashed Potatoes Jacob Synder
Buy mashed potatoes and cook them.

Pumpkin Pie Isaac Spencer
Get some pumpkins. Then get all the pumpkin seeds out of the pumpkin. Then make pie dough. Put it in a pie plate. Put the pumpkin stuff in the middle and on the sides. Then put the pie dough on top and then cook it for probably for 5 or 10 minutes. That’s it!

Turkey Payton Sporleder
Put it in the oven for 12 minutes. Take it out of the stove. Then cute it up and then eat the turkey.

Mashed Potatoes Nevaeh Stagnolia
Mom uses a masher to mash all the potatoes. Then she uses a mixer. Then mommy puts bacon in and put the cheese on last.

Mashed Potatoes Emma Sawyer
Peel them. You put them in a bowl. Stir them up and mash them. Then put them on a plate.

Turkey Tristan Akemon
Catch it with a net. We cook it. We put it on the stove.

Turkey Corbin Branam
You um, need a gun and you shoot and cut it. You, um put it in a pot and set the timer.

Turkey Cooper Brown
Run after it and have a giant net in your hand to catch it.

Turkey Jacob Burton
You go hunt for it with a bow. Then you cook it. Then you eat it.

Turkey Olivia Clarke
You sneak up behind it and get close to it and wrap your arms around it. Then you take it home and turn on the stove.

Turkey Jaela Cox
You have to see it and like catch it. You just need something to cook it in and get it cooked.

Turkey Ella Doran
You shoot it and you put a turkey in the pot and boil it.

Turkey Kaleb Fessel
You find a turkey and cook it. First you need to buy it and then cook it. Then you eat it. That’s all I have. That’s how my parents have done it.

Turkey Isaiah Jimenez
Buy stuff and then cut the head off. Then cook it.

Turkey Emma Kelly
You gotta chase the turkey. Then you got to cook it. Then you take it out of the oven and eat it.

Turkey Blaine Lewis
You could get a big net and catch it. Take it home and chop it. Then cook it.

Turkey Brooklynn Lloyd
I do not even know how to do it. Well, I have turkeys at home. You just cook them.

Turkey Chris McCullah
Drive a car around for awhile in the woods and when you see a turkey get out of the car . You use a shotgun or bow and arrow to get the turkey. You set something down that they like and then you catch them. You cut off all the parts you don’t like and cook it. Then you set it on the table and eat it up.

Turkey Easton Minton
You catch a turkey, skin it, and put it in the micro, no stove. I don’t know how long. Get it out, cut it up, and then eat it.

Turkey Peighton Peden
You have to find it in the woods. If you were a turkey you’d have to be where it was. You have to catch it with a net and then bring it home. You have to get a pot ready to cook it.

Turkey Zoey Riley
I’m not sure how.

Turkey Markell Spencer
Well you could just buy it; maybe at Wal-Mart. Cook it in the oven. I think your going to leave it in for about 10 minutes.

Turkey Cain Stidham
First you gotta catch it. Well, you gotta see one first to catch. Then you gotta cook it. You hang it over a fire. Well, you need to cut off its feet.

Turkey Carson White
Run after them and then put it in a crate. Bring it home and heat it in the oven.

Turkey Taylor Crockett
Ha ha, I don’t know.

Turkey Leela Smith
Uh, say “back, back, gobble, gobble” and then it catches the noise the person is saying. Then it comes too you and then you have to catch it. You chop the head off and like the hands you chop those off.  You put stuffing in it and put it in the oven to cook for 7 minutes. Then you eat it.

Turkey Ellie Spencer
I think you just run and catch it. You just put it in the oven.

Derby Dinner Playhouse Staging ‘A Christmas Carol The Musical’

Derby Dinner Playhouse in Clarksville will present the lavish and thrilling Broadway version of ‘A Christmas Carol The Musical’ now through Dec. 31
In this adaptation of Charles Dickens’ most well-known story, Ebenezer Scrooge is a prosperous curmudgeon who believes that personal wealth is far more valuable than the happiness and comfort of others. With an infuriated “Bah! Humbug!”, Scrooge is forced to face his selfish ways when three ghosts visit on Christmas Eve and lead him through his Past, Present and Future. Thanks to their guidance, Scrooge recognizes his faults and greets Christmas morning with cheer before spending the day reconnecting and sharing love with those who mean the most to him.
The music and lyrics for ‘A Christmas Carol The Musical’ were written by Broadway heavy hitters Alan Menken (Disney’s Beauty & the Beast, Disney’s Little Mermaid, and Little Shop of Horrors) and Lynn Ahrens (Ragtime, Seussical, Once on This Island). This duo breathes fantastic new life into a classic holiday tale.
‘A Christmas Carol The Musical’ is under the direction of Lee Buckholz with choreography by Heather Paige Folsom and Musical Director of Scott Bradley. The cast will include Jim Hesselman, John Payonk, J.R. Stuart, Sara King, Cami Glauser, Jillian Prefach, and more Derby Dinner regulars.
For ticket information, contact the Derby Dinner box office at 812-288-8281. Gift cards for derby sinner are available online at www.derbydinner.com

Sharing the Bounty…Even If It is Meager

by Curt Kovener

By now many of us are beginning to commence to initiate the preliminary cooking for tomorrow’s feast. Pitch-in dinners and family gatherings will be pretty much standard fare as will turkey, dressing, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce and desserts of pecan pie, persimmon pudding and pumpkin pie.
Some of us get wrapped up in the planning, preparation and management of the meal. Some of us get to deal with just the anticipation of all the good tasting food. And some look forward to the warmth a family gathering generates.
But throughout all the preparation, the gorging of our gut, the afternoon snoozes and the too infrequent thoughts of those blessings for which we are to be thankful, remember that there are some folks in our own community that lack family, adequate nutrition and those warm & cozy feelings we come to expect from Thanksgiving.
Single parent/single income households have a difficult time. Living paycheck to paycheck means that a major car repair or medical emergency can force a decision between paying the electric bill, gas bill or eating. Area seniors sometimes are overlooked during the holidays as extended families look inward. Sometimes it is difficult to be thankful when you are dining alone thinking that no one cares.
That’s sometimes where our local food pantry and the Crothersville FFA food drive have been able to lend a helpful hand of support.
The Crothersville First Baptist Church collects and stores away some non-perishable food to give to area families in crisis. The FFA provides Christmas food and fruit baskets to area residents whose holiday may not be as cheerful otherwise.
Whether you choose to do your part for the year-round food pantry or the local FFA’s holiday cheer drive, it really doesn’t matter. What is important is that we do our part to provide for those who may not be having their basic needs met and sharing a caring hand to those who may be forgotten this holiday season.
As you quietly unbuckle your belt after eating too much tomorrow, be grateful, count your blessings and think of how you might be able to share your bounty with others.
Non-perishable food and cash contributions are always welcome by both groups. Make a donation to either cause and you’re guaranteed to feel a little better, a little warmer, a little more caring going into this holiday season.
– – – – –
“The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.”
-Franklin D. Roosevelt

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Financial Consultant Recommends Rates Increases For Town’s Water & Sewer

The Crothersville Town Council learned the inevitable last Tuesday during their regular town council meeting: water and sewer rates for customers will have to be increased.
Steve Brock, a CPA for the utility rate consulting firm Therber, Brock & Associates of Carmel, told the council that water rates need to be increased 3.8% over five years and sewer rates need to go up 13.26% for the same time period.
The council is leaning toward smaller annual increases.
“Taking the rates up a little each year is better than one big jump,” said council president Lenvel ‘Butch’ Robinson.
The town water rates have seen automatic annual increases of one percent for the past several years. Any approved increase to local water and sewer rates would not be seen on customers’ bills until 2019.
Current water charges for the 625 households in Crothersville are $8.69 first the first 10,000 gallons of water. Therber, Brock is proposing that go up 29¢ to $8.98. The current charge for a 5/8” residential water meter is $21.69 per month. The rate consultant’s report says that number need be increased by 73¢ over the next five years to $22.42.
The recommended 3.8% increase would amount to .75% annually. Since residents are accustomed to a 1% annual water rate increase, “I don’t think (.75%) will hurt people very bad,” said Robinson.
The town sewer rates are another story.
“You currently are 4.86% below what is needed to break even with your wastewater treatment costs for the next five years,” said Brock.
“Your wastewater rates need a 13.26% increase. That’s 2.75% annual increase for five years and you are still breaking even,” said the consultant.
Current minimum sewer charges are $43.42 per household would go to $49 per month under the proposed increases.
“A lot of Crothersville’s customers compare their monthly utility bills to what their friends pay in other communities,” said councilwoman Danieta Foster. “We need to get a comparison—a true comparison—of what residents in surrounding communities are paying.
She noted that Crothersville is unique in that residents receive one monthly bill for five services: water, sewer, trash pick up, recycling collection, and a stormwater utility fee.
“Many residents call it their water bill and compare (their monthly bill for five services) to a bill for just water in other communities,” she said. “I’d like to see a true comparison on what we provide residents and what the true the comparable costs are for the same services are in communities surrounding Crothersville.”
The council approved Therber, Brock & Associates to compile a comparison and present it to the council at a future meeting.
In a related matter to water, town engineer Brad Bender of FPBH, said the much delayed work on the Hominy Ditch stormwater grant has begun. The work includes replacing culverts with larger box culverts on Bethany Road, Kovener Street and Park Avenue.
Bender earlier said the delay was a result of O’Mara Paving have so much resurfacing work under state contract.
“But the work is now underway and the good news is O’Mara is bringing in a second crew to work the project,” said Bender.
In addition to replacing box culverts the work calls for Hominy Ditch, the main east-west stormwater drainage in Crothersville, to be cleaned out of trees and overgrown vegetation on the west side of town.
Bethany Road is currently closed to allow for the box culvert installation. But because of the delay in beginning work, paving of the roadways will be delayed to spring.
“The work won’t be completed until after the asphalt plants close for the winter,” said Bender.
He offered the council two options:
The town can deduct paving from the O’Mara Contract and save $15,000 with the paving to be completed under the recently approved Community Crossroads grant which will pave 14 streets in town next year.
Or the town can have concrete installed at the work area and re-pave with asphalt next year for a $9,083 savings from the O’Mara contract.
The council did not like the option of no paving and leaving the box culvert approaches with loose rock over the winter. “We get a heavy rain, the water runs down Bethany Road and washed the rock into the ditch,” said councilman Bob Lyttle. “Of the three streets, Bethany Road is the most heavily traveled. If we can’t have it paved we need to concrete it for the winter and blacktop it next year.”
The council unanimously approved the concrete option.
While on the topic of paving, Bender returned to the town’s $423,400 State Community Crossroads Grant.
“We have to have the work under contract by April 15,” said Bender. “That means we need to have the design work and specifications completed, bid and a contract awarded by April 1.”
Bender explained that the state has not deadline date to complete the paving grant. “That is good because there have been 396 CCG’s awarded across the state that we are worried if there will be enough companies to do the work and if there will be enough aggregate (stone) available to make the asphalt so the work can be completed.”
Bender said it is imperative that Crothersville be able to go to bid early and award a contract to lock in the work.
The council approved FPBH to complete the design and oversee construction and administer the grant work at a fee of $41,500. That money comes from the awarded grant funds.
In a final matter, Bender told the council that the recently approved Main Street Circle, and East Walnut Street extension have been added to the town’s street inventory. That means the town will begin receiving state gas tax road and street funding for the additional town streets, he said.
In a final matter, the council approved a town Christmas Parade on Saturday, Dec. 9. The parade route will begin on Bard Street, travel south on Armstrong, turn east on Moore and conclude at the fire station where Santa Claus will be on hand to talk with youngsters.