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       Coming Up!

HCRD Basketball Registration... Sept 1-Oct 31
Shellfish Season Opens............................Oct 1

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             Quote of the Day
              "Money often costs to much."

                                  -Ralph Waldo Emerson
 "Goonies" coming
    to Lake Warren

Posted 9.28.16    
LAKE WARREN STATE PARK- Football season is upon us, baseball season is winding down and the leaves are beginning to change, if they actually do that in Hampton County. Something else going on is “Stars Under the Stars” movie night at Lake Warren State Park.
    This month the park will be featuring an all-time kids favorite “The Goonies.” The movie will begin at 8:00pm on October 8th and will be located inside the park at the stage. Come out and bring a friend or the entire family. Chairs and blankets are welcome and the movie is free of charge (donations are accepted). There will be a concession stand available for a nominal fee located inside the park office.
   This month’s movie is sponsored by more information, please contact the park at 803-943-5051.

Deer season 

     forecast good

Posted 9.27.16      
SOUTH CAROLINA- With the 2016 deer season in full swing in most counties, South Carolina’s deer population is healthy and the season outlook is good, according to the state’s top deer biologist.
     Although the deer harvest has been on a downward trend the last few years indicating that population levels have moderated, hunter success and deer harvest rates remain good, according to Charles Ruth, S.C. Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR) Deer and Wild Turkey program coordinator.
     Top counties for harvest in 2015 included Anderson, Hampton, Spartanburg, Bamberg and Orangeburg with each of these counties exhibiting harvest rates in excess of 13 deer per square mile. Very few areas in the United States consistently yield comparable harvest figures. Top counties for quality deer in 2015 included Aiken, and Orangeburg in the coastal plain and Anderson, and Oconee counties in the piedmont. These results come as no surprise as most of these counties have historically produced good numbers of record entries.
     As it relates specifically to the decrease in harvest during the 2015 deer season, it should be noted that hunting conditions in South Carolina were poor during Fall 2015. This began the first week in October with a 1,000-year rainfall and flooding event spawned by hurricane Joaquin in the Atlantic Ocean. The magnitude of this event forced a temporary season closure for all game species in parts of 15 coastal counties. Although these closures only lasted five to 10 days, the aftermath of the flooding in these areas and throughout the state created access and other problems for deer hunters. Additionally, hunting was negatively impacted by ongoing rainfall and unseasonably warm temperatures for the remainder of the deer season.
     Find out more about the 2015 deer harvest and 2016 antler records at the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources website: http://www.dnr.sc.gov/wildlife/deer/index.html.
    Ruth said, “Provided we experience normal weather and seasonal temperatures, the outlook for the 2016 deer season is very good. This is based on the simple fact that the decrease in harvest in 2015 was largely a result of poor hunting conditions and not fewer deer. That being the case there was likely carry over of deer that would have otherwise been harvested if conditions would have been better last year. This is particularly the case with respect to antlered bucks because residual bucks from last year will be a year older and likely have better body weights and antler development.”
      Hunters should not be overly concerned if the deer population is down compared to several years ago when the population reached its peak. Most hunters, to their credit, have recognized the fact that having fewer deer leads to better quality deer. Results of SCDNR’s antler records program indicate that this may indeed be the case as the last five years have seen more than 1,000 bucks successfully entered into the state records program.
     Deer hunting generates about $200 million in retail sales for South Carolina’s economy annually.

Pats roll again
Posted 9.26.16     
BLACKVILLE, SC- Due to the unique nature of this year’s SCISA schedule, Patrick Henry will not face another region opponent for five weeks. Last night, though, they traveled to Blackville to play arguably their biggest rival, Jefferson Davis Academy. While it’s unlikely any of the players on either team was aware of this, JDA had not beaten the Patriots in football since 2010. The Raiders players certainly came out and played like they wanted to change that particular piece of history. Two unique plays changed the course of the game, and allowed PHA to take home their sixth straight win against their rivals. 
     Neither team was able to score in the first stanza, but PHA’s Mitchell Hanna scored on a 9 yard TD run on the first play of the second quarter. The conversion failed. JDA struck back immediately, scoring on a TD pass from Wyatt Brant to Chance Morris. It was Morris’ sixth touchdown of the season. The Raiders scored the conversion to lead 8-6.
     “We didn’t really play well in the first half,” said Patriots Coach Mike McCoy. “I think it’s our youth. We look at the films, and the younger players sometimes think we are going to run over a team, and that is seldom the case. We have to come out and play hard the whole game. In fact, without the bad snaps suffered by Jeff Davis (75 plus yards in losses), no telling how far we might have been behind. But then Jackson and Gill made that play.”
     The play the coach refers to occurred with 8:30 left to go in the half. Defensive end Jackson Wiggins hit a Raiders runner with such ferocity it knocked the ball lose into the waiting hands of senior Gill Griner, who raced 29 yards for a Patriot TD. The conversion failed again. But the Patriots now led 12-8. “That was one of the two biggest plays of the game. We were still so flat, but that gave us a much needed lift,” opined McCoy after the game.
     The Raiders were not finished yet. Just before the half, Jeff Davis scored again on another Brant to Morris TD, and led 14-12 at the intermission. The Patriots headed off the field expecting to get a full on tongue lashing from their coaches. “It wasn’t nearly as bad as I thought it would be,” said ball boy Tison Gohagan. “I’ve seen dad (assistant varsity, and JV head coach, Nick Gohagan) really be much louder than that.”
     The Patriots clearly got the message. The PHA defense came out and shut down JDA’s offense in the second half, holding them to only 21 plays.  An interception by sophomore Daniel Hauptmann stopped one drive, and then a punt by the Raiders, set up the winning Patriot drive. Senior Alex Jones, who had come on to play quarterback in the second quarter, led the Patriots on a fifteen play drive, capping it with an 8 yard TD pass to starting QB Jackson Wiggins. PHA added the conversion on a Jones to Hunter Spielman pass. The Patriots now led 20-14, with 4:55 to play. Then lightning struck again for PHA.
     McCoy called for a “trick onside kick”, hoping to catch the Raiders flat footed. While the JDA kickoff team waited in formation for the kickoff, the Patriots continued to stand in their huddle after the “ready to play” whistle blew. Then suddenly, Hauptmann executed a kick that managed to only go the necessary ten yards. The Patriots, still in a bunch, rushed en masse to the ball, and recovered it at the 50 yard line, keeping the JDA offense standing on the sideline. While they were unable to run off the whole clock, the PHA offense was able to burn enough time that JDA was unable to mount a drive when the Raiders did get the ball back, giving Patrick Henry their third win of the season.

     Jefferson Davis managed to shut down Patrick Henry’s normally potent offense, holding PHA to only 133 total yards. Tailback Mitchell Hanna was held under 100 yards rushing for the first time this season. Alex Jones, starting tight end and backup quarterback, threw his second TD pass of the season. “The defense really played well in the second half,” commented McCoy after the game. “Senior Reeves Altman was huge on defense, as well as blocking on offense.” Altman had three tackles, and one for a five yard loss. “Reeves makes a huge difference on both sides of the line.”
    Senior Gill Griner had another stellar night on defense, making eleven tackles, and recovering two fumbles. Aaron Powell notched six tackles, and forced a fumble. Batten Bostick had four tackles, and broke up two passes, as he and Hanna (three passes broken up) mostly shut down the Raiders potent passing attack, especially in the second half. Hauptmann had a pass defense to go with his interception, and senior Alex Jones recovered a fumble.
     Jefferson Davis, 1-4, travels to King Academy next week,

  Patrick Henry, now 3-1 and 1-0 in region play, hosts Coastal Christian next Friday for Homecoming at Cone Field.

Wade Hampton (H) 42, Lakewood 0

Allendale-Fairfax 34, McCormick 12

Bamberg-Ehrhardt 38, Edisto 0

Bishop England 42, Academic Magnet 0

Blackville-Hilda 20, Wagener-Salley 2

Bluffton 63, Whale Branch 6

Branchville 19, Palmetto Christian Academy 3

Calhoun County 47, Battery Creek 7

Beaufort Academy 6

Colleton Prep 42, King's Academy 20

Denmark-Olar 42, North 6

First Baptist 51, Hilton Head Prep 7

Hilton Head Island 50, Ridgeland-Hardeeville 0

Hunter-Kinard-Tyler 22, Estill 14

Northwood Academy 42, Hilton Head Christian Academy 13

Orangeburg Prep 12, Calhoun Academy 6

Silver Bluff 33, Swansea 20

Thomas Heyward Academy 48, John Paul II 0

White Knoll 38, Spring Valley 7

Whitmire 34, Bethune-Bowman 26

Williston-Elko 44, Ridge Spring-Monetta 28

Smith joins BJH

Posted 9.23.16    
HAMPTON COUNTY- Beaufort Jasper Hampton Comprehensive Health Services is pleased to announce the addition of a family nurse practitioner to Hampton Medical Center. Hampton Medical Center is one of eight medical practices owned by BJHCHS. This practice takes pride in providing high quality, cost effective, comprehensive adult medical care to residents of Hampton County and beyond.
   Ashlyn Smith, NP-C, is a 2015 graduate of South University in Savannah, GA, where she completed her Master of Science degree in Nursing. Smith is nationally certified as a family nurse practitioner by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners. After graduating from Clemson University in 2007 with her Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing, she worked as a registered nurse at Beaufort Memorial Hospital for nine years.
    Born and raised near Ruffin, S.C., Mrs. Smith moved to Varnville after marrying her husband of eight years, Alton Smith. They have two boys, Luke and Jackson. With strong family ties to Hampton County, she looks forward to serving the community for many years to come.
    Hampton Medical Center is accepting new patients and offers same-day sick appointments Monday through Friday. BJHCHS has three pharmacies available with competitive pricing for all patients. All insurances are accepted and a sliding pay scale is available for those that are underinsured. For more information or to make an appointment please call (803)943-2233. The office is located at 200 Elm Street across from the First Baptist Church of Hampton.

Crabbers Wanted!!!

Posted 9.21.16     
SC LOWCOUNTRY- South Carolina Department of Natural Resources biologists are looking for recreational and commercial crabbers to help them improve the design of a device that will help reduce bycatch while maintaining catch rates of large crabs.
    While large blue crabs are what most crabbers hope to see when they pull up their crab trap, other marine animals, known as bycatch, are also commonly caught. One bycatch species of particular concern is the diamondback terrapin, a marsh turtle that often enters crab traps, most often during spring, search of food but cannot survive long periods of time underwater.
    In recent decades, biologists and crabbers have developed bycatch reduction devices (BRDs) to reduce terrapin mortality in crab traps by preventing the turtles from entering. What they found was that the devices, which fit over each entrance hole on a trap, sometimes also prevented the largest and most desirable crabs from entering traps.
   This problem prompted S.C. Department of Natural Resources (DNR) biologists to explore new designs. After three years of development, the capture and measurement of nearly 4,000 blue crabs, and confirmation that blue crabs measuring seven inches point-to-point can enter traps outfitted with this BRD, DNR researchers are excited to release this BRD design to the public on a limited basis for further evaluation. Thanks to the purchase of 1,200 BRDs by the Charleston Office of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the devices will be publicly available for distribution and installation in recreational and commercial crab traps in exchange for input on BRD performance.
    DNR’s goal is to test this BRD with 50 recreational crabbers and 10 commercial crabbers, beginning in fall 2016, in each of three regions: (a) Jasper, Colleton, and Beaufort counties; (b) Charleston County; and (c) Georgetown and Horry counties. Recreational crabbers will receive four BRDs to outfit one of their two licensed traps. Commercial crabbers will receive enough BRDs to outfit as many traps as they wish.
   BRDs will be installed by DNR researchers at a series of evening workshops beginning in late September, or can be self-installed after watching an online video. Study participants will be surveyed at a later date regarding their general impression of the BRD relative to crab capture and terrapin exclusion.
   If you are interested in participating in this study, please visit https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/CrabTrapExcluder to sign-up and indicate your availability to attend a BRD installation workshop near you. You may also sign up by calling (843) 953-9097..

     Shellfish season
     opens October 1

Posted 9.15.16     
SC LOWCOUNTRY- The 2016-2017 season for harvesting shellfish (clams, oysters, mussels and other bivalves) in coastal waters of South Carolina will open one half hour before official sunrise on Saturday, Oct. 1.
    The shellfish season will remain open through May 15, 2017, unless conditions warrant extending or shortening the season. Season dates apply to both recreational and commercial shellfish harvesting. In the event of a hurricane, major rain event or pollution spill, shellfish beds may be temporarily closed by the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC). DHEC announces such closures in the local media and makes the information available online and at 1-800-285-1618.
    The S.C. Department of Natural Resources (DNR) maintains State Shellfish Grounds for commercial and recreational harvesting of shellfish. Twenty Public Shellfish Grounds and 13 State Shellfish Grounds are managed exclusively for recreational gathering. An additional 53 State Shellfish Grounds are managed for recreational and commercial harvest. All state-managed grounds are posted with boundary signs. Shellfish Culture Permit areas may not be recreationally harvested unless the harvester has written permission from the permit holder in their possession.
    Recreational harvesters should obtain updated Public or State Shellfish Ground maps at the beginning of each season, as the areas open to harvest change from year to year. Maps of designated harvest areas may be downloaded from the DNR website or obtained by calling (843) 953-9854 or writing the Shellfish Management Section, Attn: Ben Dyar, SCDNR, PO Box 12559, Charleston, SC 29422-2559. When requesting maps, please specify the location where you wish to harvest, being as detailed as possible. Maps for the 2016-17 season will be available by Oct. 1.
    Recreational harvesters must have a saltwater recreational fishing license, available at regional DNR offices, at many fishing supply stores, online, and by phone (1-866-714-3611). To purchase a license online or to find list of license vendors visit DNR online. The recreational personal limit is two U.S. bushels of oysters and one half-bushel of clams in any one day, limited to two calendar days per seven-day period. There is a maximum possession of three personal limits per boat or vehicle. Clams must be at least 1 inch in thickness    Additional rules and restrictions may be found in the DNR Rules and Regulations, available where licenses are purchased or online.
     South Carolina residents commercially harvesting on State Shellfish Grounds require a commercial saltwater license, a commercial shellfish harvester license, and a permit for the specific harvest area. Call the Marine Permitting Office at (843) 953-0453 for additional information on commercial harvesting requirements.
     All harvesters are encouraged to “cull in place,” leaving dead shell and smaller oysters on the shoreline where they will continue to grow and provide habitat for future generations of oysters. Oyster consumers are encouraged to recycle their shells. Visit online or call (843) 953-9397 to find locations near you where shell can be dropped off for recycling. DNR uses saltwater recreational fishing license revenues to construct and enhance renewable oyster resources in the coastal counties by replanting recycled shell. All shell collected by DNR is used to restore shellfish grounds in coastal South Carolina.

     Fun Stuff to do!

Fall Basketball at the Hampton Co. Rec Dept. will begin registration on Sept. 1st. and will continue through Oct. 31st. The cost is $50 per child that is DUE at signup. There are no exceptions! The draft for the league will be held on November 2nd. All county employees receive a 10% discount for their children and there is a public discount of $2.50 per child of a multi-child participation family. Cash or check/money order only. Make checks payable to H.C.R.D. of Hampton County Rec Dept. Credit/debit cards will not be accepted at this time.

The Estill Fall Festival Committee
is always looking for new members to help plan and put on its annual event. If you are interested in helping, please contact Ms. Vikki Woods at the Estill Town Hall at 803-625-3243. The committee meets the second  Wednesday of each month at 6:00pm at the Bull Durham Building.

Would you like to be a part of the “Oldest continuing Festival in South Carolina?” Then come join the Hampton County Watermelon Festival committee. The Watermelon Festival is always looking for volunteers so stop by and see them at one of their meetings. The Festival committee meets the 1st Thursday of the month at the Hampton Methodist Church social hall on Mulberry Street in Hampton at 7:00pm. Come see what it’s all about!

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