Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Columns

December 1, 2012

Christmas joy blankets area with donation, parades, King Coal and more

— Christmas time’s a-comin into the old coalfield capitol of Pocahontas tonight when the annual Christmas parade opens the season at around 6 p.m. with the Tazewell High School marching Bulldog band leading the way.

A host of area floats and decorations will be joining in. It should be a great evening starting with the parade but there is plenty more for everyone to enjoy.

According to Pastor Dr. Darrell Hunley, the Living Puppet Tree featuring 15 live performers is going to be  featured in a delightful program up at the Gaza Kovach Auditorium in the Pocahontas High School building at 7 p.m. There are some 8,000 lights on the tree and this unique display has already toured through three states and been featured on Nite Line TV. It certainly is something to see.

The Pocahontas Baptist Church will be part of the program, and the singing group composed of some five area churches as well as individuals from the town of Pocahontas does a fine job. This benefits the Bobby Shew Community Center, an organization dedicated to helping local citizens in need.

Similar to cases across the country, the need for assistance including food and clothing is greater than ever. That need is being met in part by the Shew Community Center, so the program will offer everyone a chance to enjoy the colorful program and also lend a holiday hand to the less fortunate.

Dr. Hunley and many, many area citizens are working together to bring holiday cheer. It would be the perfect time to join in tonight.

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The eyes of Texas were surely on the 2012 Community Christmas Tree when Phipps Mineral Holdings LTD of Corpus Christi sent a $10,000 donation.

Little Jimmie surely had some tears of joy in his own eyes to receive such a gift. It will go a long way toward helping to achieve the 2012 goal. For many years, the Phipps family has done some outstanding things in and around this area and that tradition has continued with this latest gesture.

Daily Telegraph Editor and Community Christmas Tree Coordinator Samantha Perry called it a “Wow” moment, and she could not have said it any better about the big gift.

What we all know is that every donation is important. Making a merrier Christmas available to our local children is still the point and we are encouraged even more that once again the Tree will reach its goal. So, as you prepare to send in your gift, remind the neighbors and friends that one donation at a time, we can all work toward matching the Phipps generous contribution as the Four Seasons Country friends of children help Santa Claus brighten the Yuletide.

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Any time an announcement can make three state governors happy that is bound to be a bonus.

Southern Coal, part of the Justice family organization, has brought a surge into the coal business with news that more than 500 miners will be recalled with an additional 650 new ones hired.

They will be mining black gold to supply American Electric Power in the Kentucky-West Virginia-Virginia area.

At this time, there is simply no way the nation’s economy can prosper without the aid of coal.Other energy sources have their place and there may come a day when coal is not needed. This is not that day. Coal is essential to maintain our industries and energy needs not only here but across America. Coal still matters and it will be needed for many years to come.

Hats off to Southern Coal for helping thousands in the Appalachians and beyond to not only have a brighter Christmas but a glowing hope for the New Year.

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 Remember, those who love good entertainment, to spend some time in local high schools and colleges during the winter months.

Both men and women, boys and girls, will be playing basketball all over southern West Virginia and Southwest Virginia, and winter sports are just as exciting as any on the calendar.

Cheerleaders, jazz bands and other groups add to the fun.

 yourself to a sports night out soon at an area school where it’s warm, dry, and fun-filled at the right price for a family to spend some quality time together.

 Larry Hypes is a teacher at Tazewell High School and a columnist for the Daily Telegraph.

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