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First up: Who is Clayton Fuller? The surprise of New Year’s Day was his formal entry into the 14th Congressional District sweepstakes as he enters the race to replace Tom Graves a year from now. Fuller, a former Navy JAG officer and White House fellow, his pretty strong ties to the White House. A Lookout Mountain resident, he lives in the district and will make it one heck of a race as Marjorie Greene and others step up to run in coming days. Keep an eye on this one.
No. 2: The Fuller candidacy is catching a lot of folks off guard today, including those who thrive in the political industry. We do hear another candidate is likely to declare on Monday with another due to visit the area on Monday as well. All are now in catchup mode to Fuller and Greene.
No. 3: How ‘bout those Dogs? That’s hard for a Gator to say but many – including the Georgia faithful – were fearful about Wednesday night’s game vs. a resurgent Baylor. Sugar Bowl tickets were cheap and plentiful. There were too many stories about 13 or so Georgia players not in the game for whatever reason. Georgia had excuses to lose; instead, they dominated. The SEC is having a great bowl season but only one game counts and that is LSU vs. Clemson on Jan. 13.
No. 4: About the mythical college football championship at longtime sports essayist Norman Arey once called it. That game should be played this Monday, not next, and kickoff should be at 8 p.m. It is inane the way they draw the season out.
No. 5: A tip of the baseball cap to Rome Floyd Parks and Rec for establishing the New Year’s Day hike at Lock and Dam park on Wednesday. There was another at Sloppy Floyd as well. What a great way to start the new year – and to cool off, walkers could have taken a quick spin to Cave Spring for the Polar Bear plunge just a bit later.
No. 6: Deli on the way. The Rome News-Tribune has the latest permit for East Bend and it is another restaurant, McAlister’s Deli. We’ll have more details soon on the fourth confirmed dining spot to join the development rising where Kmart once way. What was interesting on Wednesday was watching all the Facebook food critics bemoan “not another deli.” We assume they were hoping for another Mexican place to whine about.
No. 7: We are both amazed and appreciative of the very beautiful comments accompanying reports that a Northwest Georgia legend, Dr. Ouida Word Dickey, passed away Dec. 31. The beloved Berry College educator, dean and ambassador made her mark off campus as well, volunteering thousands of hours on community projects. She continues to be an inspiration for all generations.
No. 8: Is it us or has the era of all the excitement of a community’s first baby of the new year gone the way of the newspaper? It used to be that this was one of the big stories of the holiday season. And it is a cute story. But what happened to all the exitement surrounding it?
No. 9: Local podcast fans, take note. One of our area’s favorite personalities is thinking pretty hard about stepping into the podcast world. We’ll be working with him to get his venture up and running. You’ll be surprised – and delighted – by who it is.
No. 10: Let’s close out with a restaurant teaser. We’re expected quick work on the conversion of Johnny’s New York Style Pizza into a new entity, perhaps beginning as early as Thursday. Our recent update on this drew an incredible amount of eyes and we think their “investment” will be repaid once formal word is out. Think local, not chain or franchise.