Patrick Crowder

Patrick Crowder

They Arab Board of Education has ppointed Patrick Crowder as the interim superintendent of Arab City Schools, effective Aug. 22.

Crowder, who served as Arab High School principal from 2000-2011, has been the system’s special education coordinator since 2011.

He will serve as interim superintendent for up to 180 days or until a new superintendent is named.

Before naming Crowder as interim, the board approved a resolution that states the interim superintendent cannot apply to be the full-time superintendent.

Acting Superintendent Stacie Pace, named when Superintendent John Mullins announced his retirement, said she would like the opportunity to apply to be Mullins’ successor.

Crowder said he had no plans to apply for the position full time.

Pace will be acting superintendent until Aug. 22.

The search for a new superintendent will be conducted by the Alabama Association of School Boards with the top five (or so) candidates to be interviewed by the Arab Board of Education in a series of public meetings when the time comes.

The job will be posted from Sept. 15 until Oct. 15. The posting period could be extended if necessary.

Student Senate

Mason Prince of Albertville  has been named to the Student Senate at Jacksonville State University.

Founded in 1883 as a state teachers college, Jacksonville State University has grown from humble beginnings into the Alabama regional university with the highest percentage of accredited programs. Located in the Appalachian foothills midway between Birmingham and Atlanta, JSU offers more than 150 courses of study, including over 40 online programs, at the undergraduate and graduate level. To learn more, visit

Co-op Program

University of Alabama student Seth Rains of Albertville will participate in UA's Cooperative Education Program for fall 2019. Rains will be working at ESG Heil Environmental.

In the Cooperative Education Program, more than 220 students alternate periods of full-time study with periods of full-time employment. This program offers work related to the academic major or career interests of each student.

While in school, students carry regular course schedules. While on co-op, they work with professionals in their fields who supervise their training and work. At work, co-op students earn competitive salaries and may receive benefit packages in addition to valuable job experience. Participants maintain their full-time student status while at work and have priority registration status each semester through graduation.

Park Criticized

Boaz's new Old Mill Park is a beautiful park right in downtown Boaz, where the old spinning mill used to be. But it's getting mixed reviews from citizens after it came out that the final price tag of the park was $3.2 million, The Sand Mountain Reporter said. 

Since opening Old Mill Park, hundreds of people have experienced the walking trail, playground, pirate-themed splash pad and amphitheater.

486 people responded to an online poll conducted by The Reporter asking the community how they felt about the price. 

25 percent voted “I feel like it is a good investment.”

29 percent voted “A good investment, but they shouldn’t have spent so much,”

43 percent voted “It’s a bad investment.”

3 percent voted “I’m not worried about the money.”

A few comments offered included:

• “Not worth what they paid … Add picnic tables so us old people can set down when we take our great grandkids. It is a nice little addition to Boaz. But where’s the $3.2 million?” Cindy Smith stated.

• “What would you have had Boaz spend it on if you oppose. This is lasting and fun and looks great,” Cynthia Parker stated.

• “It’s definitely small compared to Albertville’s new park coming soon! For that amount of money there should be a lot more stuff and a lot more land if you ask me. You wouldn’t think it would cost that much to build what they built there. It’s a good idea, yes, but more thought should have been put into it and some of the money should have been used for other things in the city of Boaz!” Kayla Brown stated.

• “I personally think it is like a breath of fresh air, breathed in by a city on its demise ... Boaz needed this! If people would look at the good and not search for the bad ... Then this would be a better place for all. But there will always be naysayers and those are generally not happy about much of anything […] I am really surprised that the shape the city was in when this administration took over, that we have anything new being built ... I say great job Mayor David Dyar and council. We will rise from the ashes, like a phoenix with its wings spread wide and soar once again ... It’s like the shade in the park ... Gotta sit in the sun a while. Until the trees are grown ... Don’t sweat it enjoy it,” Yvonne Rowan Richey said.

Old Mill Park is open with access to the walking trail and playground from 5 a.m.-9 p.m. every day. The splash pad is only open Monday-Friday, noon-5 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; and Sunday, 1-5 p.m. To learn more about renting pavilions, contact the Boaz Parks and Recreation Center at 256-593-7862.

Bears & Blankets

To comfort children involved in accidents and abusive situations, Blessed Hands, a group from First Baptist Church of Boaz, made more than 60 blankets and bears for local police departments to distribute.

Wanda Pearce, Sue Wheeler, Sheila Sanders, Lora Lancaster and Michelle Garrison delivered the items to the Albertville Police Department and Boaz Police Department.

Boaz Assistant Police Chief Walter Colbert said officers would keep some in their vehicles and hand them out to children needing a helping hand of comfort.

“I appreciate them doing this,” Colbert said. “The blankets and stuffed animals will be placed in our patrol cars to use when needed. Unfortunately, we encounter children almost daily who just need something to hold on to because of some of the situations they are in, and they feel all alone. We are very grateful for these bears and blankets to help these children."

A'ville Golf Tourney

The 7th annual Albertville Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament will be Thursday, Sept. 26 at Big Spring Lake Golf Club in Albertville. The four-person team tournament will begin with registration at 10 a.m., lunch at 11 a.m. and a shotgun start at 11:30 a.m.

The entry fee is $400 per team. Tee blasters are $10, limit one per player. Mulligans are $10, limit two per player.

Hole sponsorships are $100 each. First place earns $400.

Best of the Bottom (the top team in the bottom half of the results) gets $200.

“Our golf tournament is our largest fundraiser for the year and supports so many of our programs,” Albertville Chamber of Commerce President Stan Witherow said. “As a non-profit organization, we depend on fundraising to help us operate. We look forward to having 24 teams again this year and have a great time at Big Spring Lake Golf Club. We are taking team registrations now, so don’t wait, sign up today! We will have lunch provided, goody bags for each player and wonderful door prizes to be awarded.”

For more information or to register, visit the chamber’s office at 316 Sand Mountain Dr., log onto or call 256-878-3821.

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