Monday, April 27, 2015

Monday Reader Choice

Helena Picture of the Day
Today's picture comes from Parker Cunningham. He shared, "Loving the spring colors at Buck Creek! The cloud coverage made it perfect to photograph. Looking forward to having a booth at the Buck Creek Festival"!

Okay this is going to be a long post. Our students are winning honors, we have two new business, a survival story and much more.

Leaders of Tomorrow
Laura Shaw-Schenck shared this photo of Ms. Statum's 4th grade class visited the State Capital Montgomery last week. It's great to see our future leaders learning about State Government.

Lawn Care
Thanks to Chris Williamson for sharing from He actually lives down the street from me and responded when I said I needed to hire a local yard service. The last of my free laborers in the house is graduating and heading to college.
The Helena High Staff showing their first volume of the Literary Magazine
Jen Culver has shared that the first literary magazine is now for sale at Helena High School. The Magazine is called Eureka but this volume is entitled, "Embark". It is only $5 an issue. The photographs and writing are amazing.

Their mission statement is " showcase the creative talent of Helena High School students. Submissions are taken from August to February of each school year." They used Scribus Schoolbook and Arial font for the issue.

A shout out to the talented staff who produced the full color magazine: Maddie Crain-Editor, Hannah Crowe-Asst Editor, Drake Bessant, Hannah Brown, Ethan Delcambre, Makayla Gardner, Bethaney Hester, Bethany Leader, Cameron Liddell, Austin Moon, Denise Moulton, Isasbella Scott, Kelsey Trimble and Karley VanDorsten. Please swing by the school and grab a copy to enjoy 42 pages of stories, poems, and pictures by the talented youth in Helena.

Explorer Excellence
Heath H. Bartlett shared that the Helena fire explorers competed in Trussville competition Saturday and placed 1st in CPR and Bunkergear relay. We are very proud of you. Way to Go!

Tragedy at Dauphin Island
Helena's Connor Gaston and his father were sailing in the Dauphin Island Regatta in Mobile. They took second in their class. Normally the story would stop there and I would give them a big "Way to Go" but tragedy happened in the middle of the event.

 A storm struck that capsized boats and left 5 people missing, and two confirmed dead. They survived but their "mast was broken, sail ripped and the boat did three cartwheels". They held on and were able to right their boat after the storm passed. Then they limped to shore. His father, Shane, is a great guy and he actually taught my son and other Helena boy scouts how to sail on the ocean. I'm sure both of their skills played an important in their survival

The Coast Guard was still searching for people. They had 10 boats capsize and 40 people had to be rescued. The wind reached 80mph and lighting crackled around them. Connor Gaston was interviewed by NBC news about the event. Here is a snippet of it:

"Connor Gaston, who was participating in the race with his father, said his uncle's boat was in front of them. Gaston said their boat didn't capsize, but his uncle's boat did. "He was only a half mile ahead of us, but we couldn't see him when he went over because it was raining so hard," Gaston said.

Gaston said his uncle was rescued and he and his father weren't hurt, but his cousin suffered a serious arm injury. "The wind picked up super, super fast when the storm was coming through," he said. "It was the most wind I have seen in my life". Connor emailed me and said the report misquoted and they actually capsized many times. He and his father were on one of the lightest crafts.

Someone posted a video  part of the storm online:

HHS Baseball
Helena High's baseball team swept Jemison to bring their quest to win the State Championship back home to Helena. The 3rd round games will be played at Helena High School field versus Marbury this Friday May 1st at 4:30pm and again at 7pm. If needed, the 3rd game will be Saturday at 1pm. This is an outstanding way to celebrate the first season of Helena High Baseball! You can get a pdf of the tournament bracket here: LINK
Chess Tournament
Way to Go to Richard Oehrlein, member of the HMS Chess Club, he participated in the Tuscaloosa tournament came out with several big wins. Can't wait to see more Helena student finding ways to win in Chess tournaments around town.

HHS Track
The Helena High Track teams did an amazing job this week. We have 26 students who now qualify for the State Championship. Also the HHS Girls are the AHSAA 5A Section 2 Runner-Ups. Here are the students who are going to the State Championship
and for the Boys who qualified for the State Meet:
A big "Way to Go" to all of them. They are also asking for sponsors to help the young athletes raise money for the trip. "The Helena High School Track & Field team is headed to Gulf Shores to partake in Helena High School’s first ever State Track Meet.  Each member of the team is asking 20 friends or family members to make a donation to the Track & Field program ($20 requested).

State expenses will include a bus, meals, entry, and hotels for our athletes and coaches estimating a total of $4,000.  All money donated will go directly to help fund the Track & Field program as we strive to continue our success and make Helena proud. Please make checks Payable to: Helena High School". You can read more at: Helena Track Fundraiser: Document Link
Sarah of Troy
HHS senior, Sarah Folsom, was selected as a member of the 2015-16 Troy University Sound of the South Majorettes.

Two New Business
Old Town Helena has two new business. One is NH Vapes, which sells portable personal vaporizers which uses Propylene Glycol or Vegetable Glycerin based liquid, mixed with amounts of nicotine and food flavoring that are vaporized in a small battery powered atomizer, which simulates the experience of smoking (yes, I had to look that up). In the picture above, you can see a vaporizer with their selections of flavors. They said they have not officially opened yet but will be opening soon.

The other business that is open is a new Barbershop. They are open 6 days a week. On weekdays they are open 9am-6pm and on Saturday 9am-2pm.

Jobs in Helena

Rocking S Farm is looking for barn help for early mornings. Feed horses and clean stalls. Need someone honest and wanting to work! 441-9490

Fox Valley is looking to hire a line cook and a dishwasher.  They are accepting applications Wednesday through Saturday anytime after 2 o'clock. 6745 Highway 17
Helena, Alabama (205) 664-834

HHS Soccer
The Helena High Soccer team beat Ramsay 10-0 and they will now advance  to the 2nd round against Jemison, on Tues, 4/28. Way to Go!

The Band goes to Texas
Stephanie Padgett shared that the "Helena High Band is in San Antonio marching in the Fiesta Flambeau parade tonight along Riverwalk. It starts at 7. They will return late Monday night".

Jerrell Jamerson also posted a video of the Helena High School band in the Fiesta Flambeau Parade on the streets of San Antonio. The direct facebook link is HERE. You need to be able to see embedded facebook videos or it wont show.

video start

Helena High School band. Fiesta Flambeau Parade. San Antonio. This was a super long parade.
Posted by Jerrell Schmid Jamerson on Saturday, April 25, 2015
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and a big way to go if you read this far. Honestly, I had to take a break halfway through myself.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Helena Weekend Events

Helena Picture of the Day
The winner for the Helena Picture of the Day goes to Brian Ethridge with this photo of a dramatic sunset in Helena. It will be another great weekend in Helena. Come hangout and check out all the fun. I will update this again on Friday to make sure I have all the events covered...

Don't forget the library is having a book sale this Saturday with $1 bags of books

Former Student Athlete of the Week from the SCR
Helena Athlete of the Week
The Helena Reporter  is looking for student-athletes to feature each week in the newspaper and online.

Any child or student that plays sports for a school, city or traveling team may be nominated to be the Helena Reporter's Student-Athlete of the Week.

The feature is open to students of all ages and who play all sports – soccer, baseball, ice skating, football, equestrian, tennis and more.

All you will need to do is have your child or student fill out a short Q and A and email it, along with a high-resolution photo of him or her, to Emily Sparacino at

For more information, contact Emily Sparacino at (205) 669-3131 or by email.

Helena Student-Athlete of the Week Q andA
What are your parents' names?
What are your siblings' names?
Do you have any pets?
What sports do you play?
Do you have a pre-game/competition ritual?
What's your favorite subject at school? Why?
Are you involved in other school activities or groups?
What are your hobbies?
What is your favorite sports team?
Who is your favorite athlete?
What do you want to be when you grow up? Why?

**Please make sure to send a high-resolution photo along with this Q and A.

Huskies vs. Rams
Come support Helena High Soccer in the first round of sub-state soccer playoffs.  Varsity Boys take on Ramsay High Rams at Home Saturday 4/25 at 7 p.m. while the Varsity Girls take on G.W. Carver Birmingham Rams Saturday 4/25  11:00 a.m. at Carver High School. To get there take I65 north to exit 264 turn right, then take 1st right on 24th street N.

Yard Sale
Garage Sale tomorrow 7am-12
 413 River Oaks Lane, Helena 35080 Clothes(baby, boys, women's amd men's) shoes, furniture, bikes,  baby gear, electronics, home decor,  art etc.

Relay for Life
The City of Helena will host the North Shelby Relay For Life (first time ever) at the Helena City Sports Complex Friday, April 24 from 6 p.m. to midnight. Here is the events that will be there:

6:00pm - Opening ceremonies begin and lap counting begins
7:00pm - Live Wire band performs
8:00pm - Limbo lap
8:15pm - Zumba
9:00pm - Luminaria ceremony
10:00pm - Yoga
10:30pm - 2nd band performs
11:00pm - Simon Says lap
11:30pm - Light the Night to Finish the Fight Lap (pile on light up, neon, glow in the dark, and blinkie stuff!)
11:45pm - announcement of most laps winner and campsite decoration
11:50pm - Closing ceremonies

Acura Fob
Has anyone found an Acura key fob that was lost on the HillsboroTrail?  Pat thinks it may have been found but needs to get in touch with the person. If you find it call Pat at 425-3922 or email/message me.

View of the Helena Dam from Papa Saia's Tiki Deck
Papa Saia's Weekend Events
Friday ------------Mulligans Last Resort performs
Saturday---------Greg Shirley perfoms
Sunday-----------Jason Mayo 1pm to 5pm
Weekend Food Specials-- Shrimp and Grits

Rio's Bar and Grill Events
Friday 9pm Outshine performs $5 cover
Saturday 9pm Karaoke performs
Coal Yard Music
Friday: Visiting from Nashville, Cam Spinks @cam_spinks will be on stage at 7:30
ThomasTrussell on Saturday at 7:30pm

Job Opening
Fox Valley is looking to hire a line cook and a dishwasher.  They are accepting applications Wednesday through Saturday anytime after 2 o'clock. 6745 Highway 17
Helena, Alabama (205) 664-8341

Helena Business Leaders
The Helena Business Association has elected new leaders: "Please join us in welcoming and congratulating our new officers for the 2015-16 HBA year. Alan Farmer (bottom right) is our new President, replacing Bob Van Loan who moves to the post of Immediate Past President. Kristi Scozzaro (top right) will serve as our Vice President with a focus on membership growth and retention. John Burch (left) replaces Henry Neff as Secretary Thank you all for your service"!

Upcoming Events

Primrose Event
Heather shared this, "Our Spring Fling is Friday, May 22nd here at the school 6pm-9pm. We will have live music, family games, a silent auction, and food with parking available at the Intermediate School. We will bus families back and forth. All proceeds raised will be donated to the Jane B. Holmes Public Library in Helena, Save the Children, and Reach Out and Read America. $12 for Adults, $8 for Kids, Kids 2 and under are free, and we will have family discounts available.

Cheer Clinic
The HHS Cheerleaders will be hosting a Mini-Cheer Clinic for all interested youth grades K5-8th grade during the Spring Football Game at HHS on Friday May 15th!! Come out and cheer with the HHS Cheerleaders on the field in Husky Stadium!! You will get a t-shirt and a souvenir photo with the HHS girls plus the opportunity to cheer under those Friday Night Lights!! We hope everyone will come join us for this awesome event!! GO HUSKIES!

Helena High Choir presents Spring at the Movies

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Teen Leaders, Fashion, and Executive Women

HHS Girl's Soccer 
Girls Soccer team advance to area playoffs!!  Way to go ladies, congratulations!

Helena Teen Council 
The Helena Teen Council received a tour around the State Capital. Council President Cris Nelson  took them to meet Senator Cam Ward and State Treasurer Young Boozer. They also met meet with local House Representatives: April Weaver, Matt Fridy and Arnold Mooney.

I Love the Library 
This Thursday, April 23rd, 2015 is "I Love the Jane B. Holmes Public Library Day"!
 It is 10am-7pm and includes
Book Sale,
FREE Book bags (while they last)
 FREE Refreshments at 4:00 PM
 PERFECT time to update or apply for a library card!

HUMC Women Night
Here's information about an awesome FREE event for ladies this Thursday night, April 23rd! This event is open to all ladies in our area.

HHS Soccer Camp
Registration for HHS Soccer Summer Camp is now open.  Co-Sponsored by Helena Husky Soccer Club the camp is at Helena High School June 8th -12th 7:45 am -12:15 pm.  Early registration is $100 if paid by May 20, and $125 from May 21 until first day of camp.   Open for players entering 1st-7th grade 2015-2016 school year. Space is limited, so register as quickly as possible. Follow this link register-for-camp   also found on either HHS website/ Athletics/  boy-soccer  or girl-soccer pages or email for more information.

Fashion Blog
Courtney Wood has started a fashion blog on January 1st called "A CEW of Style". She is following the latest fashion trends. You can check it out at

Award Winning
Gretchen Birdwell, owner of Gretchen B Photography in Helena was awarded the Jo Demoll award for Representative of the Year by the Birmingham chapter of Executive Women's International this past Thursday night. Way to Go!
Family Feud
You may see some local Helenites on Family Feud. I received the photos from the Miller and the McIntosh families who were invited to try out to be on the show.

Chris Morgan wanted to share his dance classes and that some classes are great for senior citizens who are looking for something to do.

Thought you would like to know that Line Dance classes are taught each Friday AM at 10 AM Easy Beginner  and 11 AM Beginner and Beyond.
      Heardmont Senior Center, 5452 Cahaba Valley Rd.  (Hwy. 119)   4 miles beyond So. Heritage Funeral Home  (don't stop there, just come on east and enjoy exercise and fellowship).

Each 4th. Friday night, Larry Albright Band, plays Country Western, and Rock and Roll music for a Senior Adult Dance     Ballroom, Couples, Line Dancing.    7 PM to 9 PM.   $5.00      Pot Luck dinner for those who want to eat dinner 6:30 PM.

Each Sat. night, a dance goes on down at Camp Branch Saginaw Civic Center, Hwy. 26, just a 100 yards from Hwy. 31.   (2 miles from J.C. Penney in the big Alabaster shopping center).  7 PM-10 PM  $6.00, BEGINNING MAY 2, TIME WILL BE CHANGED 7 PM-9 PM, $5.00.   all ages

So all seniors   55 yrs. and onward, are invited to come.

Chris Morgan, Heardmont Dance instructor

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Tuesday is Terrific in Helena

Reader's Choice 
Monday was a blur so today will be the Reader's Choice Stories. I received a bunch so I will put some more on Wednesday. Here are the top stories of the No Sleep in Helena Readers:
School Bus Rodeo
Congratulations to Helena's Charity Miller for her 4th finish in the School Bus Rodeo.  The event tested the skills and abilities of school bus drivers. Way to Go!

Motorcycle Accident
David from Buck Creek Stained Glass was in a motorcycle accident. His friends and Family sent up a donation page for him. Here's what they shared:

David, a hardworking, funloving glass artist and former Marine, was hit by a driver making a wrong turn the day before Easter Sunday.  On Easter Sunday he spent 5 hours in surgery, having screws and plates put in his left ankle, lower leg, knee and wrist. Most debilatating of all, he also had completetly severed his Achille's tendon, which was repaired at that time as well.
David has significant healing time in front of him before he can even begin therapy; currently he is completely chair and home bound.  He is the sole propietor of a glass studio - which means of course if he isn't working he isn't making money.  He lives with his 13 year old daugter Kennedy, who has Down Syndrome.
He's working as hard as he can until he gets on his feet - please help us in helping him taking care of unpaid medical expenses and living expenses until he can!

Ameli and Alice
Sandy shared that Ameli Brannon a freshman at HHS danced in Alabama Dance Academy's production of Alice In Wonderland Saturday the 19th

Major Prize
Sherill Vansant shared that the HHS Majorettes brought home three first place wins from competition in Wetumpka Saturday. Helping fill that trophy case!

Tennis Starts
Daryl Ingram shared Helena High Tennis team after boys won their region, and girls runner up, start the state tournament in the morning to hopefully bring a state trophy home Tuesday

Band Geeks
Jennifer shared that Emma Bratton, sophomore Alabama School of Fine Arts student from Helena, appeared in the Red Mountain Theater production of Band Geeks.

Baby Horse
Suzanne Dennis Schnetzler shared this photo of the new filly born at Rocking S farms in Helena over the weekend
Imagination Winners
Chris Folsom shared that  HMS DI "Curiosities" team placed 2nd at the State Destination Imagination tournament in Huntsville
Shooting Awards
Phillip shared that Andrew Workman, and his teammates placed 3rd in sporting clays, 2nd in trap, and 2nd place HOA (high overall average) in the junior division in the state 4H shotgun shooting sports competition this past weekend at Red Eagle Gun Cub and Selwood farms in Childersberg, Al.

Annie at HUMC
Annie Pajcic, the founder of Thou Art Exalted, will be speaking at Helena United Methodist this Thursday at 7pm. It is a free event to the public.
Organ Dedication
Mandy Golightly shared This Sunday at 5:00pm Holy Spirit Episcopal Church will have beautiful music at our Organ Dedication and Choral Evensong. All are welcome!

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Horses and City Council

Helena Horses
Suzanne Schnetzler shared that the Helena horse population has increased by one.
"First foal born at Rocking S Farm in the wee hours this morning! Very pretty and healthy little filly. RockStars are going to spoil her something terrible! Congrats to owner Dale Payne"!

Helena City Council 
Here is what is happening at City Hall on Monday April 20th.

5pm Pre-Meeting
1. ABC 33/40 Hometown Focus 2015
2. Update on Fire Department Request for Equipment Purchases
3. League Meeting Date May 18th
4. City Trash Day Scheduling May 23rd or 30th
5. ADA Code in Building Ordinance

1. Call To Order.
2. Prayer.
3. Pledge of Allegiance.
4. Council Roll Call.
5 Presentation of Minutes from Council meeting and Pre-Council meeting April 6, 2015.
6 Revenue Report - Bill payment.
7 City Operations, Department, and Mayoral Report: Mayor Mark Hall
Police, Fire, Library, Streets, Sanitation, Utilities.
8. Buck Creek Festival – Scholarship Fund Award
9. Buck Creek Festival – Art Contest Award
10. Sonya King – Two by Two Rescue – Proposed Dog Park/Kennel
11. Council Comments
12. Adjourn

Friday, April 17, 2015

Helena Historic Happenings this Weekend

Helena Founder's Day
Helena's Founder Day will be here this Saturday from 10am-3pm. The location at the Helena Sports Complex. We will be celebrating 150 years of Helena History. The first 1,000 people will get a free souvenir of the event in the form of a wooden coin. There will also be drawings which include a 3 cent piece from Helena's History, art, makeup kit and more. The Helena Belles will be there for photos and the you can also make your own retro photo on an Old Town backdrop. Here are some of the cool events.
Timeline of Events:
Historical Walking tours of Old Town
Kids Free Inflatables fun All Day
Folk Art Show, Vendors and Food Trucks
Helena Belles and Helena teen Council
7:30am Vender Registration and Set-up
10:00am Welcome from MC
10:10am Band One: Sparetime
10:55am Dr. Day Speech
11:40am Presentation of Rio’s Check
11:50am Show Choir Performs
12:30pm Helen Lee Play
12:50pm All Choir Performs
1:20pm Announcement of Folk Art, Essay and Art Contest Winners
1:35pm Thomas Trussell
2:30pm Announcement of Door Prizes and Thanks You
2:45pm Jeremy Moore Band
3:30pm Volunteer Clean up and break down

Neighborhood Wide Sale
The entire neighborhood of Hillsboro is getting a yard sale permit. You can do all of your shopping done in one location.
HHS Presents
This Saturday and Sunday at 6:30pm. The HHS Theater department will present Neil Simon's "Fools". Come support this wonderful performance.
Crawfish Boil
Papa Saia's is having their Crawfish boil this Saturday. The first musical act will be Shenanigans performing at 11am, then Mulligans Last Resort at 2pm and more. They will have crawfish, gumbo, shrimp, crab clawsm beer specials and more,