• Cracker Barrel’s Employee Food & Fun Day
  • Ribbon-cutting welcome for Humble Bee


  • Roane jobless rate at 4.4%

    Roane County was among 90 Tennessee counties who saw a drop in their unemployment rates for April, according to figures released late last month by the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development.

    Roane County’s rate was 4.4 percent — a 0.4 percent decrease from March’s 4.8 percent. The numbers are much improved over the same time last year, when Roane County registered a jobless rate of 6.4 percent.

    It’s much the same story with the state rate, which was 3.9 percent in April.

  • OUT to LUNCH: Half of a half of Dean’s Big Barney pleasantly fills you up

    In my 2013 “Out To Lunch” article on Dean’s Restaurant & Bakery in Oak Ridge, I mentioned my wife, Carol, and I went to school in Oak Ridge, and are involved in planning our high school class reunions.

    Our most recent adventure at Dean’s includes members of our reunion committee. The committee is finalizing plans for a June 9 reunion lunch during the Secret City Festival.

  • Do you know me? Do you really care?

    “Do you know me? Do you really care?”

    I believe that this is one of the basic things that your customers ask themselves every time they interact with your business.

    Most of the time, it is asked subconsciously.

    It is a good way to differentiate your business from competition. I avoid doing business with companies that treat me like an inanimate object on an assembly line.

    For the past eight years, I have been conducting a three-part workshop series titled, “Getting Ahead at Work by Growing Your Value as an Employee.”

  • Kingston’s United Community Bank one of top in Southeast

    United Community Bank recently honored ten individuals and six branch teams for their outstanding performance during the first quarter of 2016.

    This recognition is part of the bank’s quarterly Sales and Service Champion program.

    The Kingston branch of United Community Bank, on North Third Street, was recognized as one of the bank’s top six performing branch teams throughout the Southeast.

  • Bacon Farms offers rustic event setting

    Rustic country weddings are a popular hit, and there is the perfect setting for such an event now in the neighborhood.

    Bacon Farms Barn, just south of Rockwood on Hwy. 27, already hosted one wedding.

    “Our son got married back in September,” April Gilley said. “We just liked the way it looked.”

    The barn features gleaming white tobacco cloth and white lights, a small dance floor and much more.

  • It was a happy, filling Cinco de Mayo at Los Primos

    In May 2015, my wife, Carol, and I celebrated Cinco De Mayo with our friends, Jimmy and Luci Bell, by having lunch at a Mexican restaurant.

    It was a last-minute idea, and I had previously written an “Out to Lunch” article about the restaurant. So I got to enjoy our lunch on the outdoor patio, under an umbrella, without table-hopping for information to write an article.

    This year I planned ahead and invited the Bells to meet us at Los Primos in Harriman for a Cinco De Mayo “Out to Lunch“ adventure. They have been part of previous articles.

  • OUT to LUNCH: Satisfy your fried green tomato appetite at The Mansion

    “Bethel, I’ve just been to a restaurant I think you’ll want to write about in an ‘Out to Lunch’ article,” Gerald Ross said during a recent telephone call.

    “It’s The Mansion in Sweetwater, upstairs over a flower, home décor and women’s clothing shop.”

    Many of you remember Gerald as the long time band director at Roane County High School. He also spent nine years as Kingston First Baptist Church’s choir director and 32 years as choir director at Caney Ford Baptist Church.

  • Sosa new to United Way staff

    Joanie Sosa has joined the Roane County United Way staff as the new community impact coordinator.

    The community impact coordinator is responsible for office management as well as furthering the work of community impact by helping those in need. It’s an expansion of the administrative assistant position rather than a newly created post.

    “I’m excited about Joanie joining us and looking forward to working with her,” said Dina Jackson, Roane County United Way executive director.