Fannin County Schools recognized for their Farm-to-School Program

Community, Education

BLUE RIDGE, GA – The Fannin County School System was recognized for outstanding achievement in its farm to school program.

FetchYourNews, Fannin County, Blue Ridge, Morganton, Mineral Bluff, McCaysville, Georgia, Fannin County Board of Education, Dr. Michael Gwatney, Candice Sission, Golden Radish, Georgia Organics

The Board of Education receives Golden Radish Award on behalf of all schools in our district.

Over 40% of school districts in Georgia participate in this program. Combined, these districts served more than 97 million school meals with local food items during the 2016-17 school year.

Georgia Organics founded the state’s first farm to school program in 2007. “It’s astounding that over 40 percent of our school districts are actively involved in The Golden Radish Awards after only four years of establishing the program,” Georgia Organics Executive Director Alice Rolls stated.

The farm to school program gives students an opportunity to learn the basics of gardening, and helps support local economies through local food purchases for school meals.

Fannin County School Nutrition Director Candice Sisson was present to present the Board of Education with the Golden Radish Award received for our district.

Fannin County School System was recognized at the Gold Level for their accomplishments during the 2016-17 school year. Some of the areas that Fannin County was recognized for include:

– Students incubated, hatched, raised chickens, and harvested their eggs. The eggs are just one of the many locally produced items featured in taste tests.

-Every school in Fannin County has a school garden and two elementary schools have greenhouses.

-Twenty farm to school standard-based lessons were taught throughout the school year, including Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) lessons on plant growth in the school garden.

Discussion among board members began about this type of curriculum having not always been taught in schools, except in specific agricultural classes or clubs.

Fannin County Superintendent Dr. Michael Gwatney pointed out, “It was something that the children came to school knowing this. The way we (society) has changed through the years it’s wonderful that school can respond to that need, and school can now provide these experiences for them to in turn take back home.”

Board Member Terry Bramlett agreed and added, “Not only does it increase their knowledge and appreciation of where food comes from, but agriculture remains the number one industry in the state of Georgia.”


Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at

Fannin County Chamber of Commerce Newsletter

Fannin County Chamber of Commerce  eNewsletter
November  14, 2017
News for Members
Fannin Co. Chamber Logo

Leading the way to economic vitality and quality of life in Blue Ridge, McCaysville, Morganton and all of beautiful Fannin County, Georgia.

Shop Small and share your support for the spots you call your  
own, whether it’s your barbershop or even your one-stop garden supply store. Places like these keep our community
strong and  vibrant, potentially employing friends, family and neighbors.   On Saturday, November 25, invite your friends to Shop Small and show love for their favorite places. Because when small businesses succeed — we all do!
#SHOPSMALL – November 25

We are now taking nominations for the
2018 Leadership Fannin Class!
Please email Jan Hackett at to submit your candidate’s name and email address.

34th Annual Banquet
Saturday, January 27
at Brasstown Valley Resort
(Spoiler Alert:  We’ve got dueling pianos!!)

We are currently looking for ten sponsors for the 2018 year cash drawings. The cash drawings are held at three Business After Hours each year. The sponsorship cost is $75.00. This will get your business name placed on the advertisements for the business after hours events as well as mention at the event. Please contact Dianne Mallernee if you are interested in becoming a sponsor. Thank you!

Ribbon Cuttings
Ribbon Cutting for The Jewish Congregation of Blue Ridge
November 9 was the ribbon cutting for The Jewish Congregation of Blue Ridge. The Jewish Congregation of Blue Ridge is a new resource for Jews in and around Fannin County (North Georgia, Tennessee, North Carolina). Their services are traditional, informal, and inclusive. For more information, call  828-644-3543 or 404-702-0878.
Like us on Facebook

November Community Events Calendar
October 28 – November 19 – Japanese Maples Colorfest, Gibbs Gardens
November 18 – Tri-State Model Railroaders Open House, Mineral Bluff Historic Depot
November 18 – January 6 – Holiday Art Show an Sale, Blue Ridge Mountains Arts Association
November 18 – Live Music is Better – Kharisma Jazzmatic Funk, Blue Ridge Community Theater
November 18 – Who DunIt? Mystery Art Fundraiser, Blue Ridge Mountain Arts Association
November 18 -19 – Mistletoe Market, North Georgia Technical College
November 19 – Firefly Music Presents Luke Bella, Location tbd
November 23 – December 30 – Mountain Country Christmas in Lights!,Georgia Mountain Fairgrounds
November 23 – Blue Ridge Turkey Trot – 5k, Downtown Blue Ridge
November 23 – Community Thanksgiving Open Table, Fannin County High School
November 24 – Blue Friday – Downtown Blue Ridge Shops
November 24 – Light up the Basin, McCaysville, GA and Copperhill, TN
November 24-26 – Santa Express Train Ride, Blue Ridge Scenic Railway
November 24 – December 10 – White Christmas, Blue Ridge Community Theater
November 24 – December 17 – Gingerbread Village Display, Blue Ridge Mountain Arts Association
November 24-26 – Merry Mountain Market, 3 Monkeys Antiques
November 25 – Firefly Music Presents Collin Raye, Location tbd
November 25 – Christmas at The Art Center, Blue Ridge Mountains Arts Association
November 25 – Blue Ridge Christmas Parade, Downtown Blue Ridge
November 25 – Light Up Blue Ridge, Downtown Blue Ridge
November 25 – Tuba Christmas, Downtown Blue Ridge City Park
December 2 – Kiwanis 58th Annual Christmas Parade, Downtown McCaysville/Copperhill
Recurring Events
* Trivia Tuesdays, Fightingtown Tavern

Bingo, Kiwanis Fairgrounds
* Trivia Night! Fannin Brewing Company
* Brewery Tours & TastingsThursday through Saturday’s at  Fannin Brewing CompanyGrumpy Old Men and Mercier Orchards.
* Swan Drive-in –Now Playing

November 24 – Blue Friday,
Blue Ridge
5:30 p.m. – Town Wide Caroling


November 24 – Light Up the Basin, 
Downtown Copperhill/McCaysville
6:00 p.m.
November 25th. – Light Up Blue Ridge
10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.– Holiday Music playing
11:15 a.m. – Santa Arrives on the train
noon to 3:00 p.m. – Tuba Christmas – on the Train Deck
noon to 5:00 p.m. – FCHS Theater Group preforming at Sycamore Crossing
12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. – Santa in the Gazebo visiting with children. Feed Fannin will be taking the Santa pictures.
2:00 to 3:00 p.m. – Alex Higgins – on the stage in the park
2:00 to 4:00 p.m. – Quinn Leach – On Depot St.
3:00 to 4:00 p.m. – Brass Quartet – on the Train Deck
5:30 p.m. – Parade starts
6:45 p.m. – Winners of the Window Decorating Contest are announced
7:00 p.m. – Lighting of the Great Tree
7:05 p.m. – Colin Raye will be singing O’Holy Night
In This Issue
Leadership Fannin Nominations
Save the Date for the Annual Banquet
Sponsors Needed
Ribbon Cuttings
Community Events Calendar
Light Up Blue Ridge Schedule


Chamber Events
November 15 – Board of Directors Meeting, Fannin County Chamber of Commerce Meeting Room, Executive Board Meeting at 11:00 a.m., Board Meeting at 12:00 p.m.
November 16 – Ambassador Lunch, La Pizzeria
12:00 p.m.
November 16 – Golf Committee Meeting, Fannin County Chamber 12:00 p.m.
November 20 – Tourism Committee Meeting, Fannin County Chamber 12:00 p.m.
November 21 – Ribbon Cutting for A2B Transit at the Fannin County Chamber
11:00 a.m.
November 23 – Thanksgiving Day, Welcome Centers Closed
November 28 – CANCELLED!!!Business After Hours with Cash Prize Drawing at Fannin Brewing Company
Members To Member Ads
Job Fair at Blue Ridge Assisted LivingBRMAA Arts ShowWhodunit
2017 Turkey Trot
Open Table Poster

Light Up Blue Ridge

Merry Mountain Market

FCYFA Presents: Grape Orchard Tour and Talk

Rebel's Corner

Fannin County Young Farmer Association Presents:


Dr. Gwatney Shares His Views About School Tax Exemption

Education, News

BLUE RIDGE, Ga. – Fannin County School Superintendent Dr. Michael Gwatney presented his stance concerning school tax exemption for seniors in Fannin County.

FetchYourNews, Blue Ridge, Fannin County, Georgia, Fannin County School System, Board of Education, Superintendent Dr. Michael Gwatney

Dr. Gwatney presents his concerns about upcoming Town Hall discussion.

An upcoming Town Hall is scheduled for Thursday, Nov. 16, 2017, at 5:30 p.m. This meeting will take place in the Jury Assembly Room of the Fannin County Courthouse.

State Representative David Ralston and State Senator Steve Gooch will be present to hear arguments from both sides.

If representatives decide to move forward, the possible Senior Homestead Exemption would have to be approved by the 2018 session of the Georgia General Assembly and then would be decided by Fannin County voters in the 2018 general election.

Dr. Gwatney addressed the board and residents present at the November 9 Board of Education meeting.

Gwatney cited statistics for Fannin County and for the Fannin County School System. According to these statistics, just under 30 percent of residents in Fannin County could benefit from this possible Homestead Exemption.

This large portion of the population, if passed, could account for schools in Fannin County losing up to $1.4 million annually.

FetchYourNews, Blue Ridge, Fannin County, Georgia, Fannin County School Sysytem, Fannin County Board of Education

Board of Education members listen to Dr. Gwatney’s presentation.

Gwatney pointed out that, “The only generation that will benefit from the exemption is the one that will be exempt now; all other generations will pay more taxes.”

A similar exemption passed in Gilmer County. Dr. Gwatney showed that after the exemption was passed, it had a negative effect on the area. The millage rate increased to account for the loss, putting a heavier burden on those not exempt from the tax.

Gwatney also cited that Gilmer experienced furloughs and a closing of a school. He stated that the citizens of Gilmer County “paid more for less.”

According to the Georgia School Superintendents Association, the current average millage rate for schools in Georgia is 16.36. Fannin County’s school millage rate sits at 11.23.

Gwatney stated, “This board has shown consistent, conservative leadership in respect with people’s money.”

He showed that while Fannin County has a lower millage rate than the average for the state, Fannin County still is able to spend more per student than the average amount spent statewide.

Dr Gwatney concluded, “My opportunities here were possible due to the effort of the previous generation.”

He added that this is “my opportunity to stand up for our next generation of Fannin County.”


Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at

11/05/2017-11/11/2017 Weekly EMA/EMS Report

Fannin County EMA/EMS
Fannin County EMA/EMS

Fannin County EMA/EMS
Director Robert Graham
181 Church St.
Blue Ridge, Ga. 30513
Fax 706-632-8003

November 5, 2017 thru November 11, 2017

M1: 29
M3: 11
M4: 22
M5: 1
M11: 22

Total: 84

3 of these calls were transfers to other hospitals.

Fannin County FFA Team Competes in Area Farm Business Management Career Development Event

Rebel's Corner

The Fannin County FFA Farm Business Management Team recently competed in the Area I FFA Farm Business Management Career Development Event.  The event was held at Summerville Middle School in Summerville, GA on November 7, 2017.

Farm Business Management team members are Tayelor Long, Shelby Pierce, Hannah Ritchie, and Emily Thomason.  The Farm Business Management Career Development Event develops the abilities to apply the economic principles and concepts used in analyzing farm-ranch business management decisions.  This team placed 4th in the competition out of 20 teams.

FFA is a national organization of over 600,000 members preparing for leadership and careers in the science, business and technology of agriculture.  FFA is an integral part of the agricultural education program in public schools.  The FFA mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education.

Rhonda Mathews is the Fannin County FFA advisor Young Farmer Advisor who coached the team.  The Farm Business Management Career Development Event is sponsored by the Georgia Development Authority as a special project of the Georgia FFA Foundation.

Blue Ridge Honors Veterans Day

Community, Featured

BLUE RIDGE, Ga. – “On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month when the guns fell silent, we will remember.”

Blue Ridge remembered on Saturday, Nov. 11, 2017, as the community honored our veterans. The week leading up to this day of recognition was marked with observances held throughout the county.

Fannin County School Systems hosted guest speakers at each of the schools to talk with students about the meaning behind this day of remembrance and appreciation.

Early Saturday morning, residents began to line East Main Street for the annual Veterans Day Parade. Shops displayed their American flags in support of our men and women who have served, and visitors to our downtown area dressed patriotically and waved their handheld versions of Old Glory.

FetchYourNews, Blue Ridge, Fannin County, Georgia, Veterans Day 2017, Fannin County Emergency Management (2)

Fannin County Emergency vehicles were adorned with flags as they joined the parade.

The parade was a beautiful display. Antique cars carried many of our county’s veterans. These veterans ranged from World War II to present day conflicts in the Middle East.

The Fannin County High School Band marched proudly while playing “God Bless America.”

Fannin County Emergency vehicles adorned with flags representing all branches of our armed services followed along.

Members of the North East Georgia Combat Veteran Association rode their motorcycles behind the the emergency vehicles.

The parade began on East Main Street and followed a route that ended at the Fannin Veterans Memorial Park.

It was at this Memorial Service that the unspoken spirit of Veterans Day could be felt and experienced. As the parade made its way to this ending point, veterans and families gathered and filled the seats bordering the memorial.

FetchYourNews, Blue Ridge, Fannin County, Georgia, Veterans Day 2017, Scott Peters, Memorial Service (2)

Keynote Speaker Chief Master Sergeant Scott Peters waits to address the crowd.

Veterans from different eras greeted each other and shook hands. Some of these veterans gave hugs, some shared their experiences, and others just silently nodded in recognition of an unspoken story.

This day has a deep meaning for those who have worn the uniform. It is a day where they can meet openly, where they can feel the bond of brotherhood again, and for many, a day where they are understood and where they can feel at ease.

Keynote Speaker Chief Master Sergeant Scott Peters showed this sentiment when he stated, “It’s a day to put veterans first. In peacetime or wartime all veterans have taken an oath indicating that they were willing to offer their lives.”

Peters addressed the struggles that many veterans face when returning to civilian life: “Twenty-two veterans a day take their own lives. This is a tragedy for Americans.”

Speaking to all Americans, Peters urged, “We must be willing to pick them up when they are down, help point out the way (to) a new life when they return home, and carry them when they are weary.”

As he said these words the veterans in the crowd were moved, some hanging their head in silent prayer. For the veterans, this is a part of their story. A story that can only be understood by having served.

FetchYourNews, Blue Ridge, Fannin County, Georgia, Veterans Day 2017, Memorial Service (2)

Flag-Folding Ceremony demonstrated at Fannin Veterans Memorial Park.

Representatives from the Missing in America Project were present to receive a check for monies raised by the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association (CVMA).

Representative of CVMA, Andy Owens, discussed the mission of the Missing in America Project. The organization locates the forgotten remains of veterans left at funeral homes or in medical examiner offices across America.

An example was cited of having recently located remains that had been stored at a funeral home in North Georgia for at least 25 years.

The Missing in America Project will provide a proper military burial in a National Cemetery for the unclaimed remains of their fellow brothers and sisters in arms.

Veterans Day is a day to honor those who serve and have served our country, but for veterans, it is a day to come together. It is a day where an unspoken truth is shared among these brave men and women. It is truth that only comes from experiencing the anticipation of receiving “the call,” and the bravery of answering that call.

This day is for previous generations to show support to the younger men and women currently serving, to let them know that others have been there before. It is a day for younger members of the military to thank the men and women who paved the way for future generations, and to realize that one day they will be that older generation showing support.

It is a day for everyone in America to take a moment and observe the sacrifices made by our military so that we may enjoy a country with freedoms.

FetchYourNews recognizes those who have served in our military both past and present, and we thank you for your service.

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Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at

German Shepherds Still Missing in Fannin County

Community, News

BLUE RIDGE, GA – What started out as a good Samaritan’s post on Facebook trying to locate the owners of two at-large dogs, later turned into a search to locate the stolen canines.

Blue Ridge, Fannin County, Georgia, Fannin County Animal Control, John Drullinger, Stan Helton, German Shepherds

The two German Shepherds located at the Blue Ridge Post Office.

On Nov. 1, 2017, a post to a Blue Ridge, Georgia, Facebook page notified followers on the page that two German shepherds had been found. The post read:

“Please Share! These 2 beauties are hanging around the Blue Ridge Post Office. They both have collars but no tags. A male and a female. Let’s find their family!”

Fearing for the animal’s safety, Fannin County Animal Control (FCAC) was called to retrieve the two dogs.

FCAC received a call at 11:59 a.m. and was on the scene within 10 minutes. The animals were able to be contained and were immediately driven back to the Animal Control building located at 1001 Fannin Industrial Park in Blue Ridge.

According to FCAC records, a call was received within 20 minutes of having retrieved the animals, and the woman calling was claiming to be the owner of the dogs.

After coming to the shelter to give information for owner reclaim records, FCAC released the two canines to the woman who had previously called claiming ownership.

After this release, however, another couple stepped forward claiming ownership of the two German shepherds.

This has raised questions concerning an owner’s responsibility to keep their pets properly identified and  FCAC’s owner reclaim policy. The current policy in place states:

“The owner’s information from their ID card (if they have one) will be written in the Date Out section of the Georgia Department of Agriculture Animal Protection Section Incoming, Outgoing and Surrender Record Fannin County Animal Control.”

Fannin County Animal Control Department Head John Drullinger stated, “This is the first time anything like this has happened in the 11 years I have been here. Of course, it makes you take a look at the current policy and try to find ways to improve. We need to ensure that this doesn’t happen again.”

Drullinger is working to amend FCAC’s policy regarding owner reclaims. Once the policy is amended, it could take effect immediately.

County Chairman Stan Helton was made aware of the situation but is currently unable to discuss the specifics of the ongoing investigation.

Helton did tell FYN in regards to the case, “It greatly concerns me. I want to make sure that we are concentrating our efforts in trying to locate these two dogs.”

The dogs were last seen with a woman driving a dark gray newer truck, possibly Toyota. According to open records at FCAC, she left the name Kay Gentry.

If you have any information about the location of the two German shepherds, you are asked to call Fannin County Animal Control at 706-632-3845 or the Fannin County Sheriff’s Department non-emergency line at 706-632-6022.


Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at - Dedicated to serve the needs of the community. Provide a source of real news-Dependable Information-Central to the growth and success of our Communities. Strive to encourage, uplift, warn, entertain, & enlighten our readers/viewers- Honest-Reliable-Informative.

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