News

Fri
21
Jul

RMUMC to host Neighbor to Neighbor Lunch

Russell Memorial United Methodist Church, located at 201 S. 4th St., is hosting its monthly Neighbor to Neighbor Lunch this Saturday, July 22. Anyone who wants a good meal is invited to the Deen Building (corner of 4th Street and Orville) for a free meal between the hours of 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.

For more stories like this one, subscribe to the Wills Point Chronicle or pick up a copy from one of our vendors.

Fri
21
Jul

Hundreds attend inaugural Back the Blue events

Photo by David Kapitan

Local Back the Blue events in Wills Point included a rolling caravan of vehicles from the Van Zandt County Regional Airport to the high school parking lot.

The Wills Point Police Department has put together a concerted effort to improve relations between the department and community at-large over the past year, hosting a series of events to help bridge the gap between the residents of the city and first responders. In March, the department hosted its first ever Spring Fling event at the south ballpark, drawing crowds with food, fellowship and music. The WPPD took another step forward in its effort to reach the community, welcoming hundreds to both the Wills Point High School and Lester Park for their first ever Back the Blue BBQ Contest and Car Show. Despite the lingering threat of inclement weather throughout most of the morning, both events went off without a hitch, earning high praise from many event attendees.

Events kicked off July 14 with the BBQ Contest beginning at Lester Park with a series of smaller events leading into Saturday morning.

Thu
20
Jul

State Capitol Highlights

Lawmakers plan to file teacher pay legislation in special session

AUSTIN — A special session of the Texas Legislature, called by Gov. Greg Abbott, is set to begin on July 18. The agenda is big.

Before adjourning in late May, our 150 state representatives and 31 state senators did the only thing the Texas constitution requires them to do each time they meet for 140 days every two years: they passed a state budget to cover the next two years.

But Abbott decided he wanted them back in Austin to extend the functions of the Texas Medical Board, and to do it with all possible speed. Abbott added a while-you’re-at-it list of 19 other topics for lawmakers to resolve to his satisfaction after they breathe new life into the Texas Medical Board.

Thu
20
Jul

Gov. Abbott calls Special Session

No one who serves in the 85th Legislature was surprised by Governor Greg Abbott’s call for a special session to convene on Tuesday, June 18. When the regular session adjourned on Memorial Day, most of the legislators knew that there were critical items which did not pass both houses that would bring us back in special session. 

The primary reason the special session has been called is to pass legislation to continue the Texas Medical Board and several other licensing agencies. Such legislation, known as a “sunset  bill” is necessary to prevent the automatic closing of a state agency after a pre-determined amount of time. The Governor emphasized that no other issues would be placed on the agenda until after the sunset bills pass. 

Wed
19
Jul

Looking Back

Tornado takes heavy toll of life, property in 1919

Editor’s Note: The following was an article published in the April 11, 1919, Canton Herald regarding a tornado that went through Van Zandt County. The path of the tornado was similar to that of the April 29, 2017, tornadoes.

A destructive storm passed about five miles south of Canton around 4 a.m. Wednesday resulting in a number of deaths and damaging residences and property.

At press time, the number of fatalities reached 10 in Van Zandt County and the number may continue to rise.

The tornado entered the county near the southwest corner passing about three miles northwest of Eustace and then moved entirely through the county in a northeasterly direction before leaving the county a few miles southeast of Grand Saline.

Tue
18
Jul

Senior Box Program set

Manna is participating in the Senior Box Program through East Texas Food Bank.  Applicants must be 60 years old and qualify by gross income guidelines. 

“If you are on Medicaid or Food Stamps you automatically qualify.  We must see proof of age and income.  You must apply for this program and you may do so at Manna,” said organizers.

For questions about the program, call 903-567-6107. Manna is open the third Saturday of each month from 9 a.m. to noon.

Tue
18
Jul

On the road to reading

Photo by David Kapitan

The Wills Point ISD’s Bookmobile made its weekly trek around the community July 12, delivering books to local children in order to keep them engaged with reading and learning throughout the months between school years. Participation in the WPISD Summer Bookmobile program is free for all children. Library cards are issued to children after a first visit unless the child still has their card from last summer. Stops each Wednesday for the bookmobile include the First Baptist Learning Center from 9-9:45 a.m.; Country Meadows Day Care from 10-10:30 a.m.; the Cartwright Center from 10:45-11:05 a.m.; the Wills Point Community Center from 11:15 a.m.-noon; Methodist Day School from 1:15-2 p.m.; the Dairy Queen parking lot from 2-2:30 p.m.; and Oak Grove Baptist Church in Elmo from 3-3:30 p.m.

Mon
17
Jul

Campmeeting set in Canton

The 20th Annual East Texas Baptist Campmeeting Revival, presented by Edgewood Evangelist Dennis Erwin, will be held July 17-21 at the Civic Center in Canton.

The non-profit meeting is free and open to the public. Services begin at 7 p.m. Monday through Friday with special events daily, including a golf tournament, picnic and other special events.

The Wednesday morning service from 9:30-noon will feature sermons from young preachers and a revival sermon by Dr. Russell Rogers.  A gospel concert will be presented in each service by nationally known southern gospel and Bluegrass groups.

Erwin stated, “Feel free to bring your comfortable chair and meet us at the Civic Center, July 17-21.”   For more information or questions call Evangelist Dennis Erwin at 903-896-7727.

Mon
17
Jul

City approves sewer repairs along Wynne Road

The Wills Point City Council doubled up on meetings Tuesday night, holding its regular monthly session with a called emergency meeting to address a collapsed sewer line immediately following suit.

Regular monthly business began with the council hearing from two speakers during the public comment portion of the agenda: Kay Crosby and O.B. Thompson.

Citing a lack of local activities, especially for children of the community, Crosby used her time to request that city leaders look into obtaining a splash pad.

Sun
16
Jul

Officers pay homage to those killed

Photo by Mark Turner

Local law enforcement officials, including officer (from l-r) Cassie Mosley, officer Adam Wall, WPPD Chief Lonnie Carroll, officer Troy Tucker and Precinct 3 Constable Robert Tisdale met at the flagpole near the veteran’s park memorial along Highway 80 July 7 for a moment of silence to commemorate the one-year anniversary of an attack that took the lives of five Dallas officers.

A number of law enforcement agencies throughout Van Zandt County participated in a moment of silence July 7 to honor the fallen Dallas Police Department officers that were killed in the line of duty in downtown Dallas one year ago.

Last year, one day after the shooting in downtown Dallas that took the lives of five police officers and wounded numerous others, Van Zandt County came together in a prayer vigil to honor the fallen and wounded Dallas and DART police officers.

Pct. 4 Constable Bob Keltner was one of the organizers of the event last year and said that he felt a “deep sense of brotherhood,” with the men and women of law enforcement during the July 7, 2016, attack.

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