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Local News

  • ORNL announces breakthrough in superconductivity

    Scientists have a clearer understanding of how to control the appearance of a superconducting phase in a material, adding crucial fundamental knowledge and perhaps setting the stage for advances in the field of superconductivity.

  • Court secrecy ruling chilling

    By ERIK SCHELZIG
    The Associated Press
    NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Transparency advocates are warning about the ramifications of a recent Tennessee appeals court ruling that “high government officials” can keep documents secret if they deem them part of their decision-making process.

  • Rockwood sports complex vandalized

    Bathrooms at Rockwood’s Mike “Brillo” Miller Sports Complex were vandalized this weekend.

    City Recorder Becky Ruppe said three handles were torn from sinks, and soap dispensers were ripped off the walls. Park and recreation director Jody Mioduski said the sink damage was in the women’s bathroom next to the press box, while the soap dispensers were broken in both men and women’s rooms.

    “It is really sad,” Mioduski said.

    He estimated the damage around $200.

  • Special guest at firing range
  • Real bananas, no monkey business

    Some in Rockwood might think they are in the tropics with the unusual vegetation that has sprouted on Abels Valley Road.

    Ray and Raylene Myers have eight bananas trees growing in their yard.

    The oldest tree has been growing for 12 years, and this is the first year it has produced any fruit.

    “Never thought we’d ever see a banana,” Ray said.  

    Their son Edward gave his mother her first banana plant.

    “My wife just took off with it,” Ray said.

  • Loose change rejected by HUB

    It’s hard for Wendy Jackson to keep her lights on.

    She felt helpless when she went to Harriman Utility Board last week after her most recent outage and brought money she’d begged from family and friends — some of it in change jars.

    It was shortly before closing, and the clerks initially denied her the coins before changing their minds.

    “I had $281,” Jackson said. “They (originally) refused to take my change because it wasn’t rolled.”

  • More to come on greenway

    The gates are open and the ribbons are cut.

    So what’s next for the Ladd Greenway?

    We’ll know soon, after Kingston City Manager David Bolling gets word back from Tennessee Department of Transportation.

    But there are plans aplenty, for both the short term and the long haul, as local officials seek to make the greenway a fully realized, full-service park.

  • Piñata Pride: Ferrante crafts colorful party centerpieces

    Festive colors and fun-filled parties aren’t complete without a centerpiece.

    For Lania Ferrante, a piñata was the focal point of a party in her native Costa Rica.

    She’s trying to encourage Roane Countians to also enjoy the party item.

    “That is the main attraction at any party, adults and little kids,” said Ferrante.

    In her Kingston home, Ferrante makes elaborate piñatas for parties in the area.

    It’s catching on, but she said using piñatas is really still a novelty here.

  • Smoot murder trial delayed until next year

    Another trial date was set for Shawn Smoot at last week’s Criminal Court docket sounding.

    Smoot, 42, is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Brooke Nicole Morris.

    Her body was found at the intersection of Blair Road and Old Blair Road on Oct. 15, 2011. Police said she had been shot.

    The case is scheduled for trial on March 24-26, 2015.

    Smoot is on his fourth court-appointed attorney.

  • Tornado gets Roane federal disaster funds

    Roane County officials hope to use federal disaster aid to cover some of the costs of getting rid of all the trees that were downed when an EF 0-rated tornado hit the area in June.

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency announced a disaster declaration for Tennessee last week.

    “We’ll end up getting some money from it,” Roane County Executive Ron Woody said. “We don’t know how much it will be yet.”