Wharton Journal-Spectator (Wharton, Tex.), Vol. 124, No. 32, Ed. 1 Saturday, April 20, 2013 Page: 1 of 12
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BHS FFA teams
head to state
advance to state
Need a Job?
In Today’s Paper:
45 Employment Ads
filling more than
Volume 124, Number 32
Saturday, April 20, 2013
12 Pages, 2 Inserts
INSIDE THIS ISSUE!
Today’s Funeral and
Death Notices, Page A6
Theodore Brenk, Steven
Geminder, Willie Janik and
■ Superintendent Search
Anyone interested in participat-
ing in the Wharton Independent
School District Superintendent
Search: Staff and Community Sur-
vey is invited to visit fluidsurveys.
The survey will provide the WISD
Board of Trustees with input con-
cerning the desired characteris-
tics of the next superintendent of
WISD. Individuals needing com-
puter access or assistance are wel-
come to come to the ESC through
Friday, April 26, excluding Saturday
and Sunday, from 8 a.m. until 4
p.m. (until noon on April 26). There
will be a community meeting on
Thursday, April 25, at 6 p.m. at the
WISD Education Support Center, lo-
cated at 2100 N. Fulton St., where
community members may provide
■ Babe Ruth Tryouts
Wharton Babe Ruth League try
outs will be held today at 6 p.m. It
will be held at the Wharton High
School baseball field.
■ Community Health Fair
The Seven Star Baptist Church,
7506 Hawes St. in Hungerford, will
sponsor its second annual Commu-
nity Health Fair, Spring Into Good
Health, from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m.
today. The health fair is free for
all ages, and there are free health
screenings, senior care services, ed-
ucational materials and door prizes
for attendees. The public is invited
to the special event.
■ Youth Carwash
A youth carwash will be held at
10 a.m. today at Peace Tabernacle,
1416 N. Alabama Road in Whar-
ton. Donations will be accepted.
■ Alumni Reunion Planning
The classes of 1943,1953 and
1963 will host a meeting to plan
The Wharton Training Alumni Class
Reunion of 2013 at 10:30 a.m.
today at the Dawson Community
Center, 1619 MLK Blvd. All class-
mates are asked to be present at
the regular alumni meeting. The
group will make plans for reunion
festivities for the annual Juneteenth,
June 13 to June 16 weekend. For
information, call Billye Catherine at
713433-7959 or Gerrie Ragston at
■ Aggie Muster
The 2012 Wharton County Ag-
gie Muster is at at 6 p.m. today at
the East Bernard American Legion
Hall beginning with the social hour
at 6 p.m. followed by the meal and
program at 7 p.m. Tickets are $15
in advance per person and $20 at
the door and $10 for children 12
and under. Raffle tickets are also
for sale for $5 each. For more in-
formation, visit whartoncountyags.
org or on facebook at The Wharton
County A&M Club.
■ Branch Conference Set
The Wharton Branch of the
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day
Saints (Mormons) will hold a semi-
annual Branch Conference at 9:30
a.m. Sunday at the Wharton cha-
pel. Lunch will be served and the
See DATELINE, Page A2
Security Saga Continues
Staff photo by Benjamin Sharp
Paul Shannon, the county's maintenance supervisor, tests one of the 14 keys that were issued to law
enforcement officers to allow them to gain access to the courthouse.
By KEITH MAGEE
The Wharton School Board
has developed a timeline in
the search to find a new su-
Kay Shoppa, a longtime
district employee who has
been superintendent for the
last three years, announced
last month that she is retiring
effective July 31.
School Board members
also want to be sure that the
public has a say in helping to
determine what kind of super-
intendent the district should
First up on the list is a com-
munity meeting where citi-
zens can provide input about
the desired characteristics
they would like to see in the
disrict’s next superintendent.
That meeting will be held
at 6 p.m. next Thursday, April
25 at the WISD Education
For those who can’t at-
tend the meeting, and even
for those who do attend, the
district has established an on-
line survey that anyone in the
community can fill out.
The survey can be found on
the home page of the school
district’s website, www.whar-
A direct link to the survey
The survey has been de-
signed to help trustees also
with determining character-
istics of the next superinten-
For those who don’t have
access to a computer, a private
computer will be available be-
tween 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. from
See TIMELINE, Page A2
off Youth Fair
Commissioners to discuss
courthouse issue Monday
By BENJAMIN SHARP
Deputies have been given keys. And a sec-
ond bailiff now covers the lobby when court’s
But what it’s going to take to improve secu-
rity — and access — at the Wharton County
Courthouse in the long term has not yet been
County officials will consider the options
at Monday’s regularly scheduled Wharton
County commissioners meeting, which begins
at 9 a.m. One of the agenda items is to “take
all appropriate action regarding courthouse
Precinct 2 Commissioner Chris King said
Thursday that some kind of resolution needs
to be reached.
“I don’t know what to make of all of this,”
Earlier in the week, District Attorney Ross
Kurtz locked the courthouse’s doors due to
safety concerns, citing the recent assassina-
tion of Kaufman County’s District Attorney.
Kurtz believes his staff — and the public —
face unnecessary danger due to a lack of se-
curity measures inside the historic building.
See COMMISSIONERS, Page A4
By KEITH MAGEE
The Wharton County
Youth Fair Barbecue Cook-off
is under way.
Teams have arrived and
are in place and cooking for
the annual event that kicks
off the annual youth fair.
Russell Machann, who
chairs the cook-off along with
Sandy Valigura, said Thurs-
day that 117 teams were
signed up to take part in the
event. That included a last-
minute flurry of teams joining
‘We’ve had 18 teams sign
up in the last two weeks,”
In addition to teams from
Wharton County, others are
coming from places such as
Edna, Rosenberg and Katy.
The event kicked off Friday
night with what’s commonly
referred to as “Party Night.”
Teams invited the public to
enjoy music and fellowship
while sampling the brisket,
ribs, chicken, beans and chili
that will be entered in this
Judging begins at 10 a.m.
today with the Most Colorful
contest, where teams display
their unique pit area and of-
tentimes perform skits. Food
judging starts at noon with
chili and beans and then the
barbecue sampling kicks off at
As always, the top Wharton
See COOK-OFF, Page A2
for West victims
By BENJAMIN SHARP
Wharton County residents are do-
ing their part to help a Texas commu-
nity devastated by a fertilizer plant
The Texas A&M AgriLife Exten-
sion Service office in Wharton this
week collected donations for victims
and emergency responders involved
in the aftermath of the West Fertil-
izer tragedy. As many as 15 people
were reported dead — and another
160 injured — from the blast, which
See EXTENSION, Page A4
Craig Manthey, a concrete
journeyman with Ti-Zack out
of Le Center, Minn., spreads
tar along concrete curbing
in preparation for an as-
phalt pour at Richmond and
Alabama Street on Thursday
morning. Ti-Zack crews were
working on curbs here and
at FM 102 and Richmond
this week as part of a Texas
Department of Transporta-
tion project that will allow
for handicapped accessible
walking. A separate state
project is being done along
Milam Street at Resident,
near the Central Appraisal
District building, to allow for
an easier turn for 18-wheel-
ers heading east.
by Benjamin Sharp
for current conditions, updated
forecasts and weather radar.
Details Page A2.
Ill Classified.................B2 Obituaries................A6
A Crime.......................A4 Sports......................B1
S Crossword...............B4 Sudoku....................B4
2 Dateline...................A2 Weather...................A2
h Life & Leisure...........A5
BURN BAN LIFTED
Wharton County’s burn ban has been lifted until further notice.
For burning guidelines, visit www.co.wharton.tx.us/
Controlled burns must be reported to 532-1550.
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Wallace, Bill. Wharton Journal-Spectator (Wharton, Tex.), Vol. 124, No. 32, Ed. 1 Saturday, April 20, 2013, newspaper, April 20, 2013; Wharton, Texas. (https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth661385/m1/1/: accessed July 14, 2020), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, https://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Wharton County Library.