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ODOT’s new eight-year plan approved; many highway pavement needs to be addressed  

At its Tuesday, Sept. 8 meeting, members of the Oklahoma Transportation Commission gave their approval to the Oklahoma Department of Transportation’s Federal Fiscal Year 2016-2023 Eight-year Construction Work Plan, which includes $6.5 billion in state and federal funds for 1,800 much-needed projects to address the backlog of critical transportation improvements. Oklahoma’s transportation system is crucial for a growing economy, however increased traffic, extreme weather and decades of underfunding takes a toll on the state’s highways and bridges. Thanks to additional funding from the state legislature in recent years, ODOT is making continued improvements, like addressing the state’s remaining structurally deficient bridges, improving pavement conditions, making narrow highways safer and reconstructing outdated interchanges as part of a long-term plan to modernize. However, there are many more needs that must be addressed in future Eight-year Plans. 



Commercial Metals Company Selects Durant, Oklahoma, for New Micro Mill

OKLAHOMA CITY – Commercial Metals Company (NYSE: CMC) and the State of Oklahoma today announced that CMC has selected Durant, Oklahoma as the location for construction of its second technologically advanced micro mill. This new investment in Oklahoma will mirror CMC’s existing micro mill in Mesa, Arizona and will be built with improved technology developed from CMC’s operating experience with the world’s first micro mill, which CMC successfully commissioned in Mesa in 2009. The addition of a second micro mill to CMC’s portfolio of highly efficient, customer focused and cost effective steel production facilities will enhance CMC’s position as a leading supplier of long products in the U.S. market. Joe Alvarado, Chairman, President and CEO of CMC, said, “The location of the mill in Durant, Oklahoma, 80 miles north of Dallas, Texas, will allow us to better serve a growing North Texas market as well as expand into markets in Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, Arkansas and Missouri. The facility will produce low cost, high quality steel products, which will complement our existing manufacturing capability to better serve our customers.   This new micro mill will also complement CMC’s existing recycling and fabrication footprint, enhancing CMC’s ability to further leverage our raw material supply chain and optimize product mix within our existing operations.” The City of Durant, the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, the Durant Industrial Authority and the State of Oklahoma have enthusiastically welcomed the project and have worked together with CMC to locate the micro mill in Durant. Oklahoma Governor, Mary Fallin, said, “We are extremely excited to welcome CMC to the city of Durant. Our pro-business climate, great quality of life, and skilled workforce make Oklahoma the perfect home for this world class manufacturing operation.” The Executive Director of the Durant Industrial Authority Tommy Kramer said, “We are thrilled with establishing a long-term business relationship with Commercial Metals Company in building this new facility in our community.  This project has the full support of TEAM DURANT.”The Oklahoma micro mill, utilizing Danieli technology and equipment, is expected to be commissioned in the fall of 2017 and to create approximately 300 jobs in the Durant area. The direct and indirect investment is expected to be in excess of approximately $250 million.  CMC expects that its investment will be funded from internally generated capital.   

About Commercial Metals Company

Commercial Metals Company and its subsidiaries manufacture, recycle and market steel and metal products, related materials and services through a network including steel minimills, steel fabrication and processing plants, construction-related product warehouses, metal recycling facilities and marketing and distribution offices in the United States and in strategic international markets.

Comptroller Glenn Hegar Announces Texas Will Not
Borrow to Meet Cash-Flow Needs

(AUSTIN) — As a result of strong fund balances, sound fiscal management and conservative budgeting, Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar announced today that the state will not issue Texas Tax and Revenue Anticipation Notes for fiscal 2016.The state has historically issued these short-term (one year or less) debt obligations, also called TRANs, for cash-flow purposes, to address periodic mismatches between revenues and expenditures during the fiscal year. These anticipated mismatches result primarily from the state providing nearly 50 percent of its payments to local school districts in the first three months of the fiscal year.Texas has issued a TRAN every year for nearly three decades. For the coming fiscal year, however, the adoption of a biennial budget below revenue projections coupled with recent fund growth will allow the state to meet its cash flow needs without issuing short-term debt obligations.“Every fiscally responsible Texas family out there knows that you shouldn’t borrow money when you don’t need to, and the state shouldn’t operate any differently,” Hegar said. “Even after a session that delivered significant tax relief and took positive steps toward addressing important long term funding issues such as transportation and state pensions, we can meet our cash flow needs in fiscal 2016 without adding to the state’s short-term debt.”The state will bridge the gap between expenditures and revenues using available funds accessed through a combination of intrafund and interfund borrowing. Intrafund borrowing taps available general revenue fund cash balances while interfund borrowing taps funds outside of general revenue such as the state’s economic stabilization fund (ESF).As revenues come in, the state will repay the borrowed funds with interest as required by law. The agency anticipates all funds to be repaid by May 2016, coinciding with the receipt of 2016 franchise tax revenues.“With approximately $8.5 billion currently in the ESF and more than $6 billion in general revenue funds, the state’s available large cash balances represent tremendous assets for Texas,” added Hegar. “The responsible thing to do is to make sure that money is working for taxpayers and not send interest payments out of state when we don’t have to.”As for the outstanding TRAN, Texas will fully repay the $5.4 billion borrowed last year on Aug. 31, 2015.

Hugo author’s new poetry collection reveals personal struggles, spiritual enlightenment

HUGO, Okla. — This week marks the nationwide release of “The Bible’s Song,” an inspirational new book by author Rhonda Bates.

“The Bible’s Song” is a collection of poetry and prose which seeks to bring the messages of the Bible — love, perseverance, obedience and relationship — and present them in a poetic, modern-day format. This book is all about God’s message of love for the weak and the broken. Join the author in her creative proclamation of God’s wonder and affection in “The Bible’s Song.”

Published by Tate Publishing and Enterprises, the book is available through bookstores nationwide, from the publisher at, or by visiting or

Bates has been writing poetry most of her life. Due to numerous circumstances and situations surrounding the events of her life, things became overwhelming, and she began to have trust issues and an identity crisis. Seeking solace in God, she began putting her thoughts and feelings on paper. Eventually, songs of brokenness, struggle, love and faith finally came forth.

Durant’s Magnolia Festival offers weekend of family fun

DURANT, OKLA – Visit Durant May 28-30 for a weekend of family fun at the 19th annual Magnolia Festival of Oklahoma. Festivities include an art show, carnival, vendor booths, entertainment and more at the Choctaw Event Center along with the Durant Rodeo, 5K run, bike tour, perch contest and golf tournament happening throughout the community.

Honoring the heritage of Durant, also known as the “City of Magnolias,” and “Magnolia Capital of Oklahoma,” the annual Magnolia Festival of Oklahoma features a wide variety of activities and something for everyone.

Majority of activities are held at the Choctaw Event Center located at 3702 Choctaw Road. Outside, the Pride Amusements carnival kicks off a night early on Wednesday, May 27. Ride the Ferris wheel and other carnival rides, play games, eat yummy fair food and more. Opening night takes place Thursday, May 28 with a stunning fireworks display at the Event Center at dusk. Also outside throughout the weekend, enjoy pony rides, helicopter rides, motorcycle show, fetch-n-fish dog show, turtle races and the children’s tent with many more activities. 

Head inside the Event Center May 28-30 to browse the craft and food booths, exhibitor displays, Choctaw artists and the annual Texoma Arts Association Art Show all free of charge. The Event Center will also include the Magnolia Playhouse, featuring around-the-clock, free, family-friendly entertainment. Featured performances include Extreme Costumes’ Transformer show and a New York tribute to Disney’s “Frozen,” which will both require wristbands given out at the event to enter. Local acts like the Durant Stompers and more will perform as well. As headquarters of the Choctaw Nation, Durant’s Magnolia Festival will also showcase the history and folklore of their heritage with Choctaw dancers and a Choctaw Princess Pageant on the Magnolia Playhouse stage on Friday, May 29 at 6:00 p.m.

The Magnolia Festival also hosts a variety of other activities happening throughout the community including a large parade and 5K run/walk in Downtown Durant, perch contest, veterans' reception, Durant Rotary bike ride at Carl Albert Park, golf tournament at Chickasaw Pointe, and the annual Durant Riding Club Rodeo at the Bryan County Fairgrounds on May 29 and 30 at 7:30 p.m. Gilley’s Durant, located inside the Choctaw Casino, will feature free entertainment at 10:30 p.m. from Joe Diffee on Friday, May 29 and Shenandoah with Marty Robinson on Saturday, May 30.

With a wide variety of events, entertainment, activities, food and exhibitions, the Magnolia Festival of Oklahoma is a guaranteed fun-filled weekend for visitors of all ages. Admission into the Choctaw Event Center is free.

The Magnolia Festival of Oklahoma is a 501c3 non-profit organization under the umbrella of the Durant Area Chamber of Commerce. For more information on the Magnolia Festival, contact the Durant Area Chamber of Commerce at 580-924-0848 or visit

Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar Encourages Families to Start Saving for Cost of Higher Education on “529 College Savings Day”

(AUSTIN) — On May 29, Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar will join the College Savings Plans Network (CSPN) in celebrating “529 College Savings Day” to increase awareness among Texas families about the importance of saving for their children’s higher education expenses.

Texas offers three 529 Plans: the Texas College Savings 529 Plan® (TCSP), the LoneStar 529 Plan®, and the Texas Tuition Promise Fund® (TTPF), which is a prepaid tuition plan.

The TTPF is designed to help families and individuals prepay and lock-in today’s rates for all or some future tuition and school-wide required fees at any two- or four-year Texas public college or university. The TCSP and Lone Star 529 plans allow families to work toward building college savings by investing in one or more professionally managed portfolios in a tax-advantaged account either directly or through an investment advisor. 

“Higher education is one of the best investments one can make,” Hegar said. “I encourage Texas families to take time on 529 College Savings Day to discuss their college savings goals and learn how a 529 college savings plan can help make those goals a reality. It’s also a good day to contribute to an existing 529 plan.”

The Comptroller’s office administers all three 529 plans. TTPF enrollment for newborns is available through July 31 to lock in undergraduate tuition and school-wide required fees at 2014-2015 prices; open enrollment begins Sept. 1 for 2015-16 prices. The LoneStar 529 and TCSP plans are open for enrollment year round.

Learn more about our Texas 529 plans by visiting

“American families of all income levels have found 529 plans to be one of the most compelling ways to plan for the future and reduce their reliance on student loan debt,” said Betty Lochner, Chair of CSPN. “Nationally, assets in 529 plans total more than $247 billion with an average account balance of $20,474. Thousands of Americans have made a commitment to saving for college by starting a 529 plan, and on 529 Day, I encourage state residents to consider joining them.” 


Governor Mary Fallin, Legislative Leaders Reach Budget Deal

OKLAHOMA CITY — Governor Mary Fallin, Senate President Pro Tempore Brian Bingman and House Speaker Jeffrey W. Hickman today announced an appropriated state budget agreement for Fiscal Year 2016.Under the agreement, the FY 2016 appropriated budget will be $7,138,920,521, which is $74.3 million, or 1.03 percent, less than FY 2015’s appropriated budget. The agreement preserves current funding levels for common education, a major victory considering the state had $611 million less in certified revenue available this legislative session than was appropriated in FY 2015. Education continues to be the state’s largest investment, with more than 50 percent of all appropriated dollars going toward education expenses.Other agencies protected from appropriation reductions through flat or increased appropriations include the Department of Corrections, Department of Public Safety, Oklahoma Health Care Authority, Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, State Department of Health and Office of Juvenile Affairs, among others.Additionally, the agreement preserves the funding necessary to maintain the state’s current eight-year transportation plan and county government’s five-year road and bridge plan. It also appropriates $15.9 million to the Department of Human Services to fully fund FY 2016 Pinnacle Plan costs.Under the agreement, 49 agencies receive funding cuts ranging from 0.75 percent to 7.25 percent, eight agencies receive appropriation increases and 12 agencies receive flat appropriations. To address having $611 million less in certified revenue than was appropriated in FY 2015, the agreement accesses $150 million from the Rainy Day Fund and reconciles $125.2 million from agency revolving funds. It produces additional revenue by accessing other state accounts, modifying apportionments and implementing new tax initiatives to reduce tax fraud and collect past due taxes.In a major transparency and fiscal reform, the general appropriations bill, House Bill 2242, will for the first time display all funding available to agencies in order to present the full funding picture of state government. Previously, only legislative appropriations figures were contained in these bills. Legislative appropriations today comprise about 40 percent of state spending.


Due to Record Breaking Flood Rains, Music and Mayhem Festival featuring Eli Young Band and Granger Smith Cancelled

EUFAULA, OK (May 15, 2015)--- The 8th Annual Music and Mayhem Festival scheduled for May 24th, 2015, at the Eufaula Cove Amphitheater in Eufaula, OK has officially been cancelled. The cancellation comes amidst record breaking rains occurring over the past months in the region. All tickets purchased via an outlet will be refunded at the outlet purchased and all online ticket sales will be refunded via the payment method provided at the time of purchase. For any questions regarding refunds, please contact
It is with deep regret that Levelland Productions came to the decision to cancel the Music and Mayhem Festival. After much deliberation and several talks with the City of Eufaula, the performer’s agents and management teams and research via the Corps of Engineers, the decision was reached that the potential danger for patrons warranted a cancellation. This issue, coupled with a lack of non-flooded areas for parking, camping, etc., factored into Levelland Productions decision for cancellation. “We are 13.55 percent over flood control pool and the Corps of Engineers has told us to prepare for the lake to rise another foot. 602 feet is the top of the gates and we are at 598.3 feet already,” said Frank Kucish, acting City Manager for Eufaula. Levelland Productions is a concert promotion, event production and venue operations company based out of Oklahoma City. Levelland Productions has been a premiere entertainment provider since being founded in 2005.

Governor Mary Fallin Signs Texting While Driving Ban

OKLAHOMA CITY - Governor Mary Fallin today signed House Bill 1965, making it illegal to text and drive in Oklahoma. HB 1965 makes texting while driving a primary offense, meaning law officers will be able to pull over anyone who is texting while operating a vehicle. The penalty will be $100. The governor, during her State of the State address earlier this year, called on lawmakers to pass a texting while driving ban. “Over a dozen Oklahomans die every year in accidents caused by drivers who are distracted by cell phones,” said Fallin. “Hundreds more are injured. Studies show that driving while texting can actually be more dangerous than driving drunk.” Fallin said she hopes the law will save lives by changing driver behavior and attitudes regarding texting while driving. “My hope is that this bill does more than just change the law,” Fallin said. “As a state, we need to change the way we think about texting while driving. The fact is it’s dangerous. If we can get people to think about it that way, we can drive more responsibly, save a lot of lives and make our roads much safer.” HB 1965 is called the Trooper Nicholas Dees and Trooper Keith Burch Act of 2015, named for the two Oklahoma Highway Patrol troopers who were struck by a vehicle earlier this year while investigating an accident on Interstate 40 in Seminole County. Dees died at the scene, and Burch was hospitalized. The driver of the vehicle was using a smart phone at the time of the accident. Several troopers attended today’s bill-signing as well as members of the Nicholas Dees and Keith Burch families, including retired Trooper Bruce Dees and Brandi Dees, the father and widow of Nicholas Dees, and Kayla Burch, the wife of Trooper Keith Burch. Trooper Burch was unable to attend because he still is undergoing rehabilitation for his injuries. HB 1965 received overwhelming support in the Legislature. It passed 38-6 in the Senate and 85-7 in the House of Representatives. Oklahoma is the 46th state to pass legislation banning the practice of texting while driving. HB 1965 contains exceptions for certain emergency situations and specifies it will not apply to devices operated in a voice-activated mode in which a driver’s hands would not be needed to write, send or read a text message. HB 1965 was authored by Rep. Terry O’Donnell in the House and by the Committee on Public Safety in the Senate. It takes effect Nov. 1.

MAY 11th answers in how to complete ice storm Damage Forms

Jerry Robinson, CED of the Choctaw/Pushmataha County FSA office advises that for producers who applied through the Farm Service Agency for assistance to help clean-up their agriculture property due to the December 2013 ice storm, there is a meeting being held on May 11 2015 at 6:30 pm in the Darrough meeting room of the Hugo Agriplex located at 415 East Reno, Hugo Oklahoma. Robinson explains that the purpose of the meeting will be to provide answers in how to complete applicable forms and provide adequate documentation to the approving authority of the Oklahoma State FSA Office in Stillwater Oklahoma. Robinson advises that all producers should attend while assistance is being provided.This only applies to individuals who have actually applied for assistance; the deadline has passed for any other application.

Senator Silk speaks to local Rotary Club

Newly elected State Senator Joseph Silk ( picture right) of Broken Bow recently visited with Hugo Rotarians  during a noon meeting of the club. Silk , a Republican, won the Nov. 4 general election to represent Senate  District 5 in Southeast Oklahoma. Silk told  Rotarians he believes in protecting individual liberties  and  was looking forward to taking his conservative principals to work in the legislature.  The Oklahoma legislative session begins  Monday, February 2nd.  Also pictured with Silk is Hugo Rotarian  Will Payne.



Choctaw Electric Board members call it quits.

Choctaw Electric releases breaking news on Christmas eve. At 8 a.m. December 24th 2014 local electric coop announces replacement of six board members via Facebook page. In a post on social media website Facebook, six board members resigned and the remaining board filled the vacant seats. Remaining on the board are seats A, B, and D. Seat A held by Bill McCain, the board President Mike Bailey District B, and Buddy Anderson with seat D.


New board members are:

James Woods will replace Bob Hodge District C.

Neil Birchfield will replace Henry Baze District E.

David Richie will replace Joe Briscoe District F

Danny Antwine will replace Bob Holly in District G

Mike Brewer will replace Larry Johnson District H

Marcia Wright will replace Rodney Lovitt District I




Read the entire release online at Choctaw Electric Facebook page


Governor Mary Fallin Responds to Violence against Ten Commandments Monument: “Our Monument will be Rebuilt”


Governor Volunteers to Help Lead Effort to Raise Private Funds for Monument Restoration

OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin today condemned the violence against the Ten Commandments Monument at the Oklahoma State Capitol and volunteered to help raise private funds to restore it.

"This monument was built to memorialize the historical significance of the Ten Commandments in guiding our own laws and lives,” said Fallin. “It is absolutely appalling that someone would vandalize anything at the Oklahoma State Capitol – the People's Building – much less a monument of such significance.”

The Ten Commandments monument was paid for with private funds from Rep. Mike Ritze. Governor Fallin has offered her assistance to Rep. Ritze to help lead any private fundraising efforts necessary to rebuild the monument.

"Our monument will be rebuilt and restored,” said Fallin. “The people of Oklahoma will not stand for acts of violence against the Capitol or its monuments.”

“Authorities are currently investigating this criminal act. The person or people responsible for this crime will be caught and held responsible.”








Texas Prepaid College Tuition Enrollment Open

(AUSTIN) — Open enrollment in the Texas Tuition Promise Fund®, the state’s prepaid college tuition program, began Sept. 1, and runs through Feb. 28, 2015. Texas Comptroller Susan Combs reminds families that the Texas Tuition Promise Fund offers parents the chance to prepay for their child’s education at Texas public colleges and universities at today’s prices.

“Saving for college is one of the most important things parents look at as they sit down around the kitchen table and examine a family budget,” Combs said. “The Texas Tuition Promise Fund offers parents the opportunity to lock in today’s prices for their child’s education at Texas public colleges and universities, and the fund has flexible options that families can utilize to fit their budgets.”

Families in the Texas Tuition Promise Fund purchase prepaid “tuition units” that can later be used toward undergraduate tuition and required fees at schools ranging from Texas public community colleges to four-year, in-state universities. Prices are based on 2014-15 academic year costs for the state’s public colleges.

  • Type I units, priced for tuition and school-wide required fees for the most expensive public four-year school in Texas, cost $118.06 per unit.
  • Type II units, based on the weighted average cost of tuition and school-wide required fees across all Texas public four-year schools, cost $89.42 per unit.
  • Type III units, priced at the weighted average cost of tuition and school-wide required fees across all Texas public two-year schools, cost $22.23 per unit.

Under the plan, 100 units equal roughly one academic year consisting of 30 semester hours of tuition and school-wide required fees at the Texas public school that most closely matches the pricing base. Families can prepay for up to six years (600 Type I units or the equivalent amount of Type II and III units) of college.

The plan’s payment options include lump sum payments, installment payments that include 8 percent interest or a pay-as-you go plan that allows parents to gradually add more units when the family budget allows. Payments can be as low as $15 after an account is established by paying a one-time fee of $25 and purchasing at least one unit.

The Texas Tuition Promise Fund is entering its seventh year. For more information about enrolling in the prepaid college tuition program, including a college cost calculator, go to or call (800) 445-GRAD (4723), Option 5.


Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin Signs Vehicle Tag Compact with the Choctaw Nation

OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin announced today that the state of Oklahoma has signed a vehicle tag compact with the Choctaw Nation.The compact, signed during last weekend’s Choctaw Nation Labor Day Festival, establishes how the state and tribe will work together to issue Choctaw vehicle tags.“The state of Oklahoma and the Choctaw Nation already are important partners in economic development, education, health care and transportation infrastructure,” said Fallin. “This is just another example of an opportunity for state leaders and tribal leaders to get together to strengthen our partnerships.”Under the compact, Choctaw citizens who want to purchase a Choctaw tag may go to a state tag agent and present their citizenship card. They will pay all the same fees and taxes that a nontribal person would to complete the same transaction.The Choctaw Nation plans to give its citizens who purchase a Choctaw tag what amounts to a 20 percent rebate on licensing, registration, registration renewal, and payment of excise taxes.The Choctaw Nation will design the tag. The state will manufacture the tags and distribute them.“A Choctaw tag is much more than just saving money – it is a way to show our heritage,” said Choctaw Nation Chief Gary Batton.  “There is a resurgence in interest of the culture of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. The new license plates are a great way for our members to display their pride in tribal heritage.  The tags state ‘Chahta Sia Hoke!’ – which is Choctaw for ‘I Am Choctaw!’, and feature the Great Seal of the Choctaw Nation and stickball sticks, a traditional Choctaw game. I hope all tribal members in Oklahoma are as excited about placing this newly designed tag on their automobile as I am.”



Broken Bow (August 18, 2014) – Pine Cellular and nonprofit Cell Phones For Soldiers Inc. are asking Southeast Oklahoma residents to help troops call home by donating gently-used cellular phones. Although the military landscape is ever changing, as many as 200,000 troops are serving in the United States military overseas around the world. By donating to Cell Phones For Soldiers, Southeast Oklahoma residents can provide a lifeline for America’s bravest. Beginning today, residents can donate their phones at all Pine Cellular Store Locations, and during all local events Pine Cellular participates in Southeast Oklahoma. Lucas Caruso, Corporate Market Development Manager stated, “Pine Cellular is pleased to support the Cell Phones for Soldiers campaign to salute all those that represent our communities serving our country.”

Cell Phones For Soldiers was founded in 2004 by teenagers Robbie and Brittany Bergquist at the ages of 12 and 13. The charity has since provided more than 210 million minutes of free talk time to servicemen and women stationed around the world through its calling card program, Minutes That Matter. Funds raised from the recycling of cellular phones are used to purchase prepaid international calling cards. On average, Cell Phones For Soldiers distributes 3,200 calling cards each week to bases around the world, care package programs, deployment ceremonies and VA hospitals.

“Each year we have been humbled by the amount of people and organizations like Pine Cellular that take the initiative to support our troops,” said co-founder Brittany Bergquist. “The communication gap between those serving and their families is a crucial need that Cell Phones For Soldiers is committed to addressing for years to come.” Donated phones are sent to Mindful eCycling for recycling. For every donated phone valued at $5, Cell Phones For Soldiers is able to provide two and a half hours of free talk time to deployed troops.Approximately half of the phones Mindful eCycling processes are reconditioned and reused. Phones and components that cannot be refurbished are dismantled and responsibly recycled to reclaim materials, including:

  • Gold, silver and platinum from circuit boards
  • Copper wiring from phone chargers
  • Nickel, iron, cadmium and lead from battery packs
  • Plastic from phone cases and accessories

For more information, please visit or

Secretary of State Berry congratulates Blue Bell on 107 years of providing Texans tasty treats

Brenham, Texas–Today, Texas Secretary of State Nandita Berry celebrated the 107th Anniversary of the founding of Blue Bell Creameries by presenting a proclamation to Blue Bell CEO and President Paul Kruse at Blue Bell headquarters in Brenham.

Blue Bell Creameries, first known as Brenham Creamery Company, was incorporated in Texas on August 3, 1907.

“Blue Bell is one of many companies we can proudly say started right here in the Lone Star State, and I am thrilled to help celebrate more than a century of Blue Bell bringing a little extra sweetness to Texas,” said Secretary Berry. "We're proud that companies start here and prouder that they choose to stay here. Texas remains, as she always has, wide open for business."

Kruse stressed the company’s strong ties to Texas.
“Blue Bell is available in 23 states and is the third best-selling branded ice cream in the country, but we never forget that we started out as a small coalition of creameries in Brenham,” said Kruse. “We are pleased to still be a Texas-based company today, 107 years later.”

In 1907 local farmers decided to establish the Brenham Creamery Company and make butter from excess cream brought in by area farmers. A few years later, the creamery began making ice cream and delivering it to neighbors by horse and wagon. In 1930, the company changed its name to Blue Bell Creameries after the native Texas bluebell wildflower.


Oklahoma State Football No Longer Faces APR Restrictions APR score amended after the discovery of an additional delayed graduation point.

STILLWATER -- The National Collegiate Athletic Association confirmed today that the Oklahoma State University football program Academic Progress Rate (APR) has been amended to a 930 and the school no longer faces any APR restrictions for the 2014-15 academic year.Earlier this summer, OSU athletic department officials discovered the recent graduation of student-athlete from the 1990s, which resulted in the addition of a delayed graduation point to push the Cowboys above the threshold for restrictions.“Throughout this process the NCAA has been committed to having complete and accurate data,” said Kevin Fite, OSU’s senior associate athletic director for compliance. “We were provided a great deal of assistance in ensuring the information we were evaluated on accurately reflected our football team’s academic performance, based on APR standards. When the additional point was discovered earlier this summer, the NCAA staff promptly re-evaluated our situation and added the point, which took us out of the penalty range.”When the NCAA released its APR data on May 14, OSU football had an average score of 929.41 over the past four years and an average score of 943.54 over the past two years. The Cowboys had been facing a two hour loss of countable athletic activity and the loss of a practice day after falling less than one point short of the NCAA’s minimum APR requirement.“We are very thankful for the cooperation of the NCAA staff during this process and we appreciate their focus on the accuracy of the data. We are also thankful that we received a speedy resolution,” OSU Athletic Director Mike Holder said. “In the long term, this process will be a positive thing for our athletic department because nothing is more important to us than playing by the rules and graduating our student-athletes. This has caused us to re-examine how we monitor the APR and make some positive changes.”The APR is a team-based metric that accounts for the eligibility and retention of each student-athlete, each term.

June 24th 2014 Election Results

Governor Mary Fallin Comments on U.S. Supreme Court Ruling in Hobby Lobby Case

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Governor Mary Fallin today issued the following statement after the Supreme Court’s ruling in the Hobby Lobby case (read more here).“Religious liberty is one of the principles this nation was founded upon. It is a freedom woven into the fabric of this country and expressly outlined in our Bill of Rights. The Supreme Court acted today to protect religious liberty and defend our citizens from an overreaching, overbearing federal government. “I congratulate Hobby Lobby, a great Oklahoma company, for successfully standing up to the powers that be in Washington and working to protect the freedoms enjoyed by all Americans.”


Hugo, OK unveils new welcome sign

Pine Celluar a new business in Hugo, OK unveiled the new "Welcome to Hugo billboard" located north of Hugo just before the turnpike exit. "we were ask to step up and provide the sign, technology powered by Pine Cellular. We are real proud of it." L.J. Caruso Corporate Market Development.








Farmers Markets Offer Fresh Produce and Recipes

The growing season is in full swing with gardens growing and vegetables getting ripe. Farmers markets consistently offer the freshest fruits and vegetables grown in Oklahoma. Strawberries, blackberries, cucumbers, squash and onions are all in season. Shoppers will also find jams, jellies, baked goods, flowers, bedding plants, meat and cheeses. There are 51 registered markets that are stocked with 100 percent Oklahoma Grown products. The Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry is promoting these markets with a special series of recipe cards funded by a Specialty Crop Block Grant from the USDA. Beginning in mid-June, all Oklahoma Grown markets will offer collectible recipe cards showing delicious ways to prepare seasonal vegetables and fruits. A different recipe card will be distributed each week for 16 weeks. The beautifully illustrated recipes feature produce commonly found in local markets. Peach and Pecan Ice Cream, Three Sisters Stew, Fresh Corn and Rice Salad, Blueberry Pudding and Cantaloupe Salsa are a few of the tempting ideas markets will share with shoppers. More information is available at the website where consumers can find a complete list of markets, their locations and hours of operation.


Texas Secretary of State congratulates Whataburger on Whataname-Trademark for Whataburger issued this date in 1950

Austin, Texas– Today, Texas Secretary of State Nandita Berry congratulated Whataburger on the trademark anniversary of its iconic name. On this date in 1950, the Texas Secretary of State’s office authorized the trademark for the name Whataburger. “Whataburger is a name that perfectly describes the product and is recognizable to Texans across the state,” said Secretary Berry. “I’m proud the first trademark came from our office.”Whataburger has served its famous Whataburger since1950 when Harmon Dobson opened the first store as a small roadside burger stand in Corpus Christi. Dobson gave his restaurant a name he hoped to hear customers say every time they took a bite of his made-to-order burgers: “What a burger!” Secretary Berry called CEO Preston Atkinson and Chairman of the Board Tom Dobson and to congratulate them. “We’re proud Whataburger was founded in Texas,” said Secretary Berry. “We’re prouder still that every day they continue to choose our state as their headquarters. We welcome other makers of fine products, whether it’s burgers or drill bits, tactical fire arms or oil-field technologies, to join us in Texas. As Governor Rick Perry is fond of saying, Texas is open for business.” Secretary Berry stressed the importance of making establishing a business in Texas as efficient as possible. “Just as this office helped a new business named Whataburger in 1950, we are still working to help new and growing businesses in Texas today,” said Secretary Berry.The Office of the Texas Secretary of State is responsible for managing business filings for the state including certificates of formation and trademarks. Last year more than 150,000 new Texas businesses filed with the Secretary of State’s office, a 5.6 percent increase from 2012. Today, Whataburger is headquartered in San Antonio, with more than 750 locations in 10 states with sales of more than $1 billion annually. In 2001, the 77th Texas Legislature officially designated Whataburger as a ‘Texas Treasure.' To learn more about Whataburger visit: To learn more about the Texas Secretary of State visit: ###

4-H Members Shine in Horse Training Project


Shawnee, OK-            The State 4-H  Horse Show started with a bang on Thursday, June 20, 2014. 4-H members from across the state who qualified at their district level, traveled to Shawnee, OK to participate for top honors.  4-H horse members participate in a variety of disciplines from speed events to western pleasure, showmanship and trail.  This year, eleven members from across Oklahoma participated in a different type of competition, the Oklahoma 4-H 2 -Year -Old Horse Training Project Class. Many 4-H members who have prior experience in the horse show ring decided to take on this unique challenge in 2014.  The 2 –Year- Old Horse Training Project provides an incentive activity for 4-H members to develop their training skills and encourages them to enhance their overall horsemanship skills. Members are responsible for the care, fitting and training of the project and may only consult with resource people such as professional trainers for advice and consul.  Members are required to exhibit their horse in both a Western Pleasure Class and Showmanship Class at the state show. Two of the participants in this year’s event were Madison Vance of Pawnee 4-H and Chaz Rufo of the Tulsa County 4-H Horse Club.

Chaz Rufo has previously participated in the 2 year old project winning Reserve Champion his first year of participation and was then named Champion in 2013.  Chaz’s mount for 2014 is named “Rocking on the Prairie”.  Chaz actually came to own his project horse by winning an essay contest.  Chaz took over ownership and  picked up “Rocking on the Prairie” in November of 2013 and really started ramping up training efforts in February of 2014 in preparation for the State 4-H Horse Show. Chaz’s hard work paid off with him being named the Reserve Champion Overall in the 2 Year Old Horse Training Project for 2014. Madison Vance is the Pawnee Senior 4-H Club President and participated for the first time in the 2 year old project with a mare she raised, “Good N Glittery” but better known by her barn name of “Velma”. Madison worked with Velma starting the first part of 2014 to make sure she was prepared for the State 4-H Show.  Madison’s previous show ring experience includes exhibiting Paints, Pintos and Palominos at both the state and national levels.  “Velma” is Madison’s first training project and her time and effort paid off with Madison being named the Champion Overall in the 2 Year old Horse Training Project with a win in both the Western Pleasure and Showmanship components of the event. Oklahoma 4-H is dedicated to helping Oklahoma youth, families and communities reach their full potential. By providing hands-on programming and events in a large variety of projects, 4-H is not only helping youth learn the life skills they need to be the leaders of tomorrow, but it is also teaching its members they can lead today and can make tangible, significant changes in their clubs, their communities, their state and their world. For more information on the 4-H horse program and other activities, go to


Petty Officer 1st Class Jasmond Harrison, a yeoman from Paris, Texas, serving aboard the USS Nevada

BANGOR, Wash. (June 17, 2014) Petty Officer 1st Class Jasmond Harrison, a yeoman from Paris, Texas, is serving aboard the USS Nevada (SSBN 733) Blue Crew in the U.S. Navy protecting and defending America on the world's oceans aboard one of the world's most advanced submarines. The Navy's ballistic missile submarines, often referred to as "boomers," serve as an undetectable launch platform for intercontinental ballistic missiles. They are designed specifically for stealth, extended patrols and the precise delivery of missiles if directed by the President. The Ohio-class design allows the submarines to operate for 15 or more years between major overhauls. On average, the submarines spend 77 days at sea followed by 35 days in-port for maintenance. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Apprentice Andre T. Richard/Released.)



Southeast Oklahoma loses out. While the June Commission Wrap-up: ODOT awards 19 countiesin Oklahoma and zero in Choctaw, Pushmataha, Bryan, and McCurtian.
Contracts were awarded for projects in Carter, Cherokee, Delaware, Harper, Johnston,  Kay, Kingfisher, Logan, Muskogee, Noble, Oklahoma, Pittsburg, Pontotoc, Pottawatomie, Sequoyah, Texas, Tillman, Woods and Woodward counties.

The metro once again is the highlight taughted by Oklahoma Transportation Commission’s Monday, June 2 meeting include an update on the final stage of Purcell/Lexington bridge repairs, a briefing on state transportation funding, approval of several engineering design contracts for structurally deficient bridges and awarding of contracts for interstate work in eastern Oklahoma and bridge and highway projects in Oklahoma City and Kingfisher. With the deadline for reopening the James C. Nance bridge between Purcell and Lexington fast approaching, the Oklahoma Department of Transportation is hopeful that the repair work will be completed in time for the planned June 14 opening. The construction contractor is currently performing the final repairs, installation of specially-fabricated metal plates to reinforce cracked areas of the bridge. Additionally, inspectors are checking all previously-repaired areas of the bridge so only the new repairs will be left to inspect. To ensure the safety of drivers once the bridge is opened, ODOT will establish a temporary weight restriction for heavy trucks. Once the performance of the bridge has been monitored for an appropriate amount of time, truck traffic will be allowed on the bridge.

A record number of engineering design contracts were considered and approved by the commission. A total of 29 engineering contracts, including design work on 18 structurally deficient highway bridges, will enable ODOT to continue the progress made on highway bridges statewide. Among those approved were contracts to design reconstruction of the I-35 bridges over Waterloo Rd. in northern Oklahoma County and N.E. 63rd St. in Oklahoma City, both planned for fiscal year 2020.  
Commissioners awarded a contract with a more than $10 million base bid and potential financial incentives for early completion for a project to rehabilitate more than five miles of
I-40 pavement in the Sallisaw area. They also awarded a $2.7 million contract to perform specialized repairs to bridges on I-35, I-235 and SH-74 (Lake Hefner Parkway) in Oklahoma City and a $4.2 million contract for highway and bridge reconstruction on SH-33 at Uncle John’s Creek in Kingfisher.
In all, commissioners awarded 23 contracts totaling nearly $51 million to improve bridges, highways, interstates and roads in 19 counties.

Contracts were awarded for projects in Carter, Cherokee, Delaware, Harper, Johnston,  Kay, Kingfisher, Logan, Muskogee, Noble, Oklahoma, Pittsburg, Pontotoc, Pottawatomie, Sequoyah, Texas, Tillman, Woods and Woodward counties.
The eight-member panel, appointed by the governor to oversee the state’s transportation development, awards project contracts for road and bridge construction every month. The panel’s next regular meeting is scheduled for Monday, July 7 at 11 a.m. in the R.A. Ward Transportation Building in Oklahoma City.
Before a project is awarded, ODOT researches, plans and designs the work to be done. Contracts are bid competitively, with the commission selecting the winning firm. Typically, work begins several weeks or months after contracts are awarded.
Contracts, bid information, the commission’s monthly agenda and project details can be viewed at


Horse Owners Should Take Precautions Against West Nile

The Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food, and Forestry is encouraging horse owners to take precautions and vaccinate their animals to protect against the West Nile Virus (WNV) and Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE). There have been more than 40 cases in each of the past two years in Oklahoma where horses have been positively diagnosed as infected with mosquito-carried diseases.  The bird population serves as the reservoir for the viruses, and it is then spread by mosquitos to horses and humans. 

The mosquitos most likely to transmit WNV and EEE lay eggs in small pools of standing water.  Adult mosquitoes can hatch in 10 days during the warmest months of the summer.  Mosquitoes can become infected with both WNV and EEE after feeding on an infected host; such as birds carrying the virus.  Within 10 to 14 days, the mosquito can transmit the virus to both humans and horses.

“Signs of West Nile Virus include weakness, fever, incoordination, seizures, blindness and difficulty getting up,” said Assistant State Veterinarian Michael Herrin, D.V.M.   “There are several vaccines available, and we are encouraging horse owners to visit with their veterinarian and determine the vaccination protocol that will best fit their operation.”

Oklahomans can reduce the risk of both EEE and WNV by eliminating places where mosquitos breed such as standing water.  Horse owners should not let water stagnate in birdbaths or water tanks and should turn over wheelbarrows when not in use. Any containers that are needed for constant use, such as water troughs, should be emptied and flushed twice a week in order to remove the possible mosquito eggs.  When possible, owners should reduce horses’ outdoor exposure at dawn and dusk, the times of day when mosquitos that transmit the West Nile virus are most active. 

Sean Burrage named President ofSoutheastern Oklahoma State University

DURANT, Okla. – The Regional University System of Oklahoma Board of Regents has named Sean Burrage as the 20th president of Southeastern Oklahoma State University. In a special meeting Thursday in Oklahoma City, the Board interviewed five candidates and then voted to hire Burrage, a Durant native who is completing his second term as an Oklahoma State Senator (District 2). He also serves as Democratic Floor Leader. Last November, Burrage announced that he would not seek a third term in office. An attorney by profession, the legal field, public service, and higher education have all played important roles in Burrage’s life. He earned his Juris Doctorate Degree from the University of Oklahoma College of Law in 1993. In addition, he holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from OU. He is a product of the Antlers Public Schools. “As a Board, we were impressed with the credentials of all five candidates,’’ said Richard C. Ogden, chairman of the Board of Regents. “Following the interview process, Sean Burrage emerged as the candidate with the vision and the enthusiasm best suited to lead Southeastern Oklahoma State University into the future. We believe that he is poised to do an outstanding job as the University builds on a proud tradition of excellence.’’ Ogden further said, “We believe that Sean Burrage will use his skills as a communicator and leader and his deep and immense personal and professional relationships with so many Oklahomans to lead Southeastern from great to greater.’’ Burrage, who will begin his new duties on July 1, said he is excited about the opportunity to join the University. “It’s like coming home for me,’’ he said. “I lived the first three years of my life in Durant while my parents (former U.S. District Judge Michael Burrage and school principal Aletha Burrage) were going to school at Southeastern. There is no other place I’d rather be – I see so much opportunity for growth at Southeastern and I’m excited to be a part of it.’’ Burrage was elected to the Oklahoma State Senate in 2006, representing District 2 (Mayes and Rogers Counties). In November 2011, he was elected Democratic Floor Leader after serving as Assistant Democratic Leader for the 52nd Oklahoma Legislature. Burrage served as Legislative Director to United States Senator David Boren in Washington, D.C., and later as Special Assistant and Director of State and Federal Relations to President Boren at the University of Oklahoma.
He has served as a board member of the University Hospitals Authority and Trust at the OU Medical Center. Active in his community, Burrage served on the Board of Directors for Tri-County CASA and as President of “Share the Spirit,’’ a local charity that has assisted numerous families. He was named Tri-County CASA Attorney of the Year in 2001 in recognition of his pro bono representation of minor children in the juvenile court system.
In 2011, Burrage was a member of the Joint Committee on Indian Tribal-State Relations. He has also served as a Delegate to the American Council of Young Political Leaders and also designated as a member of the 2008 Class of Aspen-Rodel Fellowships in Public Leadership.
In addition to his standing committee assignments, Burrage was appointed as Minority Co-Vice Chairman of the Senate Redistricting Committee. He was also chosen to be a member of the Select Committee on Pensions. He and his wife Carole have two sons, Truman, 17, and Carter, 9. They reside in Claremore.  A 19-member search committee formed by the Board met on May 1 to review resumes and recommend individuals to be forwarded to the Regents for further consideration. On May 2, the Regents met to decide on which applicants to interview. Burrage will replace Dr. Larry Minks, who announced on April 1 that he would be stepping down as President of Southeastern effective July 1.    Minks will remain at Southeastern as President Emeritus and Distinguished University Professor of Leadership. He has also been appointed to serve as the Director of the new Center for Transformational Leadership at Southeastern. He served as president for five years.


Governor Mary Fallin Orders Independent Review of Execution Protocols

OKLAHOMA CITY – Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin today issued the following statement regarding last night’s execution of Clayton Lockett, the upcoming execution of Charles Warner, and the implementation of an independent review of the Oklahoma Department of Corrections’ execution protocols. The governor also signed an executive order (see attached) authorizing the review, which will be led by Department of Public Safety Commissioner Michael Thompson. “Last night, the state executed Clayton Lockett. In 1999, Clayton Lockett physically assaulted, kidnapped, and shot Stephanie Neiman, and then had an accomplice bury her alive in a shallow grave. He also repeatedly raped a second woman. “He was convicted in a fair trial by a jury of his peers. He was then sentenced to death.  He appealed his execution, and that appeal was rejected by both the Oklahoma Supreme Court and the Oklahoma Court of Criminal appeals. He had his day in court. “I believe in the legal process. And I believe that the death penalty is an appropriate punishment for those who commit heinous crimes against their fellow men and women. However, I also believe the state needs to be certain that its protocols and procedures for executions work. “For that reason, I asked last night for a review of the Department of Correction’s execution protocols. After consulting further with DOC Director Robert Patton, we agree that an independent review of DOC procedures would be most effective and appropriate. Therefore I have asked Department of Public Safety Commissioner Michael Thompson to lead that independent review of the state’s execution procedures.  

“That review will focus on three areas:

 ·         “First, Clayton Lockett’s cause of death. Commissioner Thompson has informed me that the state Medical Examiner’s office will authorize an independent pathologist to make that determination.

 ·         “Second, the review will determine whether or not the Department of Corrections followed the current protocol for executions.

 ·         “Third, Commissioner Thompson will develop recommendations to improve execution protocols for the Department of Corrections.  

 “I expect the review process to be deliberate and thorough. It will be the first step in evaluating the state’s execution protocol. My office and the Department of Corrections will communicate with the Attorney General’s office on any possible additional steps in the future.

 “To allow for Commissioner Thompson’s review process to be completed before any further executions, last night I issued an executive order staying the execution of Charles Warner until May 13th. I have not given Commissioner Thompson a deadline to complete his review. If he has not completed his review by May 13th, an additional stay will be issued.

If there are adjustments that need to be made to the state’s execution protocols, those adjustments will be made.

 “Charles Warner had his day in court. He committed a horrible crime: the physical abuse, rape and murder of an 11 month old infant. His fellow Oklahomans have sentenced him to death, and we expect that sentence to be carried out as required by law.”

Local Emergency Managers Team Up to Get Ready Together for America’s PrepareAthon!

DENTON, Texas — Emergency managers in the Dallas/Fort Worth metro area teamed up today to get ready together in case tornadoes hit North Texas in the future.

FEMA Region 6 in Denton, the city of Denton and the Grapevine-Colleyville Independent School District (GCISD) conducted simultaneous tornado drills as part of a “National Day of Action” for a campaign called America’s PrepareAthon! The campaign encourages people to work collectively to be prepared personally and professionally by staying informed, creating a plan, building a kit and getting involved. The city of Denton held a tornado drill at the main City Hall building. “Tornados are one of our primary severe weather threats. The city of Denton was pleased to participate with FEMA Region 6 in a National Day of Action to test our tornado shelter plans. We encourage all residents to visit and learn how to be prepared for severe storms and other types of potential emergencies we are susceptible to in north central Texas,” stated Michael Penaluna, emergency management coordinator. Grapevine-Colleyville ISD held its tornado drill at Cross Timbers Middle School. “As a school district, we have students in our care for eight hours a day, on average, every school day. A lot can happen in that time, particularly with the weather, and we have to be ready to move entire schools or groups of schools into secure positions at a moment’s notice,” said Michele Linn, GCISD’s emergency management coordinator and director of risk management. “Practice is the key to swift action and we run drills such as these throughout the year to train students and staff on safety procedures. Having the opportunity to partner with our city emergency operations, first responders and regional experts from FEMA on today’s drill further strengthens our ties as a community and reinforces our common goal to provide safe and secure learning environments for our students and staff.” FEMA Region 6 held its tornado drills at its campuses in Texas and Louisiana and at its disaster field offices in Oklahoma and New Mexico. “Everyone should have a plan of action individually, for their families and their communities before a disaster strikes,” said FEMA Region 6 Administrator Tony Robinson. “Practicing plans like we are today makes us safer and practicing, and preparing, together – as a team – just makes good sense.” Visit for more information on America’s PrepareAthon! You can find tools to stage your own emergency preparedness drills, as well as register any preparedness activities for you or your community.

April 1 Antlers School Board
Robert Bowman John F Wood 
640001 Antlers Church of Christ  59 31
640002 Community Building 91 93
640003 Ant City Library 37 20
640004 Catholic Church 70 70
640005 Miller  0 0
640005 Moyers 0 0
640006 Finley 30 15
640009 Nashoba 0 0
640010 Snow 26 8
Absentees 2 9
17 45
 County TOTAL 332 291
Total  623 53% 47%



Declares Disaster for Oklahoma

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency announced that federal disaster aid has been made available to the State of Oklahoma to supplement state, tribal, and local recovery efforts in the area affected by a severe winter storm during the period of December 5-6, 2013.

The President's action makes federal funding available to state and eligible tribal and local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency work and the repair or replacement of facilities damaged by a severe winter storm in Choctaw, Le Flore, McCurtain, and Pushmataha counties.

Federal funding is also available on a cost-sharing basis for hazard mitigation measures statewide.

Sandy Coachman has been named as the Federal Coordinating Officer for federal recovery operations in the affected area. Coachman said additional designations may be made at a later date if requested by the state and warranted by the results of further damage assessments.


1-14-14 ELECTIONS Results
Controlled Drinking
101 Boswell 36 64
104 Soper 68 43
105 So Central Comm 14 12
106 Nazarene Church 37 31
207 Bluff 10 11
208 Goodland 41 40
209 Grant 24 16
210 VFW 75 45
211 Frogville 11 5
214 Washington Comm 30 40
320 Sawyer 11 11
316 KTC 70 58
318 Messer 24 34
319 Spencerville 25 15
322 Swink 7 4
321 Ft Towson 47 26
Courthouse 19 25
Early 135 32
Absentee 12 5
 County TOTAL 696 517
Total Vote 1213 57% 43%

More Results

Hunziker Named Oklahoma Sportscaster Of The Year

SALISBURY, N.C. – The voice of the Oklahoma State Cowboys, Dave Hunziker, has been named the 2013 Oklahoma Sportscaster of the Year, it was announced today by the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association. As part of the OSU Cowboys Sports Network/Learfield, Hunziker serves as the radio play-by-play voice for the OSU football and men’s basketball teams and also hosts television shows for head coaches of both sports. This marks the first Oklahoma Sportscaster of the Year award for Hunziker, who is in his 13th season at OSU. Hunziker came to Stillwater from Western Kentucky and has also served as the voice of Radford athletics and the Big South Conference.


Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma designated a ‘Promise Zone

President Barrack Obama announced the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma as one of five locations designated by his administration for its “Promise Zone” initiative, a new anti-poverty program meant to provide resources such as grants and tax incentives to help improve conditions in persistently high poverty communities.

12_District_Map_webChoctaw Chief Gregory E. Pyle said, “I am very thankful that the Choctaw Nation and partners have been awarded the Promise Zone designation. We are blessed to work with many state, regional, county, municipal, school, and university partners who, along with the Choctaw Nation, believe that great things can occur to lift everyone in Southeastern Oklahoma when we work together.

“This designation will assist ongoing efforts to emphasize small business development and bring economic opportunity to the high-need communities. I am confident that access to the technical assistance and resources offered by the Promise Zone designation will result in better lifestyles for people living and working within the Choctaw Nation.”


The Paris FFA receives grant from National FFA Organization to support an environmental service-learning project

INDIANAPOLIS (National FFA Organization) – The Paris FFA chapter in Paris, Texas, has been awarded a $2000 grant from the National FFA Organization's Living to Serve: Environmental Grant program. The chapter has developed a year-long service-learning project to meet local environmental needs. The Living to Serve: Environmental Grants are provided through funding from corporate sponsors CSX and the Donaldson Foundation as a special project of the National FFA Foundation. The Paris FFA project includes plans to increase the availability of information about medications and plastics polluting the environment, so that citizens can make educated decisions concerning the possible dangers to the environment and their health.  Project CLEANSE shall highlight a safe and proper method of pharmaceutical disposal that may effectively decrease environmental pollution, and may reduce the misuse and abuse of pharmaceuticals. This is a permanent medication disposal unit located at the Paris Police Station. Furthermore, the project shall promote green awareness in the community, by encouraging citizens to rely less on the single use plastic water bottle and opt for reusable bottles. Used plastic water bottles and plastic bags will be collected and links with local businesses will be utilized to ensure proper recycling. The project illustrates the final line of the FFA motto, which is Learning to Do, Doing to Learn, Earning to Live, Living to Serve, by encouraging FFA members to unite in service within their communities. The Living to Serve: Environmental Grants take community service one step further to service-learning, which provides a meaningful way to apply leadership and education skills learned in school and FFA.More information about the program can be found at  More

Use Caution When Dealing With Winter Storm-Damaged Trees

COLLEGE STATION, Texas—Winter storms this month left parts of northeast Texas with downed limbs and split trees. Power has been restored and attention has now turned to the devastating effects the weather had on their trees.

Texas A&M Forest Service reminds homeowners to be careful with damaged trees. Trunks and branches are heavy and should be considered dangerous until they can be brought to the ground. Even limbs as small as two inches can cause injury if they fall on someone. The only deaths from Hurricane Claudette that hit South Texas in July, 2003 were from falling tree limbs.

“It is a common occurrence to have people survive storms and natural disasters only to be injured while cleaning up afterwards,” said Pete Smith, state urban forestry program manager. “We want people to be as safe as possible while dealing with damaged and fallen trees.”

Take caution when pruning small branches and leave the heavy chainsaw work to professionals. Look up for broken limbs that may fall, and look down to avoid fallen power lines. Any damage to limbs within 10 ft. of power lines needs the work of a professional arborist. They have the equipment and knowledge needed, and are usually listed in the telephone book under “Tree Service.” Ask for certification through the International Society of Arboriculture.

Be cautious of tree services soliciting door to door. A qualified arborist should have Workers’ Compensation insurance, liability insurance and experience in the tree care industry. If their services include tree topping, beware. Tree topping is the worst treatment for trees because it reduces the amount of leaves the tree needs to recover from the storm on its own.

Check with your city or county officials to see if they are providing assistance with disposal of tree debris from private property.

For further assistance, contact your local Texas A&M Forest Service office or your county extension agent.

Governor Mary Fallin Declares State of Emergency Due to Winter Storms

OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin today declared a State of Emergency for all 77 Oklahoma counties due to the winter storm impacting the state.

Because the weather event is expected to include prolonged sub-freezing temperatures, dangerous road conditions and power outages, emergency management authorities recommended issuing this declaration before the full brunt of the storm arrives.

 Governor Fallin warned Oklahomans to stay off the roads if at all possible.

 “The weather is bad and getting worse,” said Fallin. “Emergency personnel are coordinating with state and local officials to ensure we are prepared and ready for whatever comes our way.” Fallin’s Executive Order allows state agencies to make emergency purchases related to disaster relief and preparedness. It is also a first step toward seeking federal assistance should it be necessary.

 In preparation for the storm, the State Emergency Operations Center is activated and the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management (OEM) is working with local emergency managers across the state as well as numerous emergency response, recovery partners. OEM, Oklahoma Highway Patrol, Oklahoma National Guard and Oklahoma Department of Transportation have developed a stranded motorist plan with teams positioned across the state in the areas with greatest risk for dangerous road conditions.

 Additionally, OEM has worked with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to preposition industrial size generators in the state. The generators will be used in the event shelters are needed due to stranded motorists or power outages. The generators will also be used to provide power to water treatment plants in the event of electric service disruptions. The FEMA generators will augment the industrial size generators OEM already has positioned around the state. The American Red Cross, Salvation Army, Baptist Disaster Relief and other agencies are standing by to assist with warming and feeding stations. Under the Executive Order, the state of emergency lasts for 30 days.


Choctaw Nation preparing to help Tribal Members during winter storm

As the winter storms are pushing their way through Southeast Oklahoma, the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma is taking measures to offer assistance to the affected communities and Tribal Members.  We have been working with the local County and City Emergency Managers in a joint effort to provide assistance where needed.

Significant freezing rain and dropping temperatures over several days may cause major power outages in some areas.  At this point we have placed emergency generators at four Choctaw Community Centers and are preparing to help the community and our Tribal Members with emergency shelter if needed.  These centers are located in Hugo, Antlers, Poteau, and McAlester.  In addition, the new community center in Atoka has a generator as well.  Volunteers are preparing to be on-site to offer assistance.
If schools in your areas are closed, Choctaw administrative offices and clinics are also closed.
For Choctaw Nation Tribal Members in need of a assistance, please call the Tribal Headquarters at 800-522-6170 for the Emergency Services Division.  You may also check to see if your local center is available as well.  Travel may be very difficult for a couple days but we will do our best to provide emergency services to the Tribal Members and the community as a whole in a timely manner.
Antlers – 402 SW “O”, 580-298-5501
Atoka – 1203 W. Liberty Rd., 580-889-6147
Bethel – Choctaw Road 144, 580-241-5637
Broken Bow – 210 S. Chahta Rd, 580-584-6372
Coalgate – 105 E. California, 580-927-3641
Crowder – 707 Bond St., 918-334-5344
Durant – 2750 Big Lots Parkway, 580-924-7810
Hugo – 408 N. Main St., 580-326-3528
Idabel – 2301 E. Lincoln Road, 580-286-6116
McAlester – 1636 S. George Nigh Expy., 918-423-1016
Poteau – 208 B. St., 918-647-9324
Smithville – 39618 N. US Hwy. 259, 580-244-3289
Spiro – 19400 AES Road, 918-962-3832
Stigler – 2208 E. Main St., 918-967-2398
Talihina – 201 Dallas St., 918-567-2106
Wilburton – 515 Center Point Rd., 918-465-2389
Wright City – 5718 Rodeo Grounds Rd. 580-981-7011

Rural Fire Grants Awarded

Oklahoma City - Oklahoma Forestry Services, a division of the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry, announced $200,000 in competitive grants have been awarded to rural fire departments across Oklahoma.

“The Rural Fire 80/20 Grant program provides assistance to departments to fund improvements to their infrastructure and equipment which improves the community’s ISO rating reducing insurance rates,” said Secretary of Agriculture Jim Reese. “Funds can be used to purchase firefighting or communications equipment or to build or improve a fire station.”

This annual program was funded by the Oklahoma legislature and authorized by Governor Fallin. Following official notification, fire departments can make eligible purchases and submit receipts for 80 percent reimbursement.

“This program is one of the many ways we work to build the capacity of Oklahoma’s rural fire departments,” said State Forester George Geissler. “Providing equipment through our Federal Excess Property program, funding opportunities, and specialized wildland fire training all strengthen our partnerships and make sure the state’s citizens are protected.”

For a complete list of departments receiving the grants, visit For more information, contact OFS Communications Specialist Michelle Finch-Walker at 580-236-1021




Nashville, Tenn. (September 16, 2013) – With the SOLD OUT tribute concert already hosting top names in all genres of music, Nancy Jones is excited to announce the addition of George Strait, Blake Shelton, Miranda Lambert, Eric Church, Reba McEntire, and Alabama to the all-star lineup. 
“I am thrilled and honored that so many of George’s friends are coming to what would have been his last concert, but is not a fitting tribute,” says Nancy Jones.  “George loved these artists and before passing had actually wrote letters to almost all of them.”
The newly added list of performers will join previously announced artists Alan Jackson, Dierks Bentley, Travis Tritt, Tanya Tucker, Josh Turner, The Oak Ridge Boys, Charlie Daniels, Jamey Johnson, Montgomery Gentry, Sam Moore, and others.  All previously announced artists are currently being reconfirmed. 


Hugo School Bond 9-10-13 Unofficial

104 Soper 0 1
105 So Central Comm 80 18
106 Nazarene Church 92 17
208 Goodland 75 40
210 VFW 112 44
214 Washington Comm 134 26
215 Courhouse today 92 17
316 kiamichi tech 187 41
318 Messer 81 58
322 244 43
Absentee 16 4
 County TOTAL 0 0
Total Vote 1422 78% 22%
1113 309



Oklahoma State Cowboys in the NFL, Week One

STILLWATER – Here’s a look at how former Oklahoma State Cowboys did in the opening week of the 2013 NFL season:

Dan Bailey, Kicker, Dallas Cowboys
Team Result: Beat the New York Giants, 36-31
Team Record: 1-0
Bailey Stats: 3-for-3 field goals (long of 45), 3-for-3 PATs
Season Stats: 3-for-3 field goals (long of 45), 3-for-3 PATs

Billy Bajema, Tight End, Baltimore Ravens
Team Result: Lost to the Denver Broncos, 49-27
Team Record: 0-1
Bajema Stats: No stats
Season Stats: No stats

Justin Blackmon, Wide Receiver, Jacksonville Jaguars
Team Result: Lost to the Kansas City Chiefs, 28-2
Team Record: 0-1
Blackmon Stats: No stats
Season Stats: No stats

Dez Bryant, Wide Receiver, Dallas Cowboys
Team Result: Beat the New York Giants, 36-31
Team Record: 1-0
Bryant Stats: Four catches for 22 yards
Season Stats: Four catches for 22 yards

Josh Cooper, Wide Receiver, Cleveland Browns
Team Result: Lost to Miami Dolphins, 23-10
Team Record: 0-1
Cooper Stats: No stats
Season Stats: No stats

Perrish Cox, Cornerback, San Francisco 49ers
Team Result: Beat the Green Bay Packers, 34-28
Team Record: 1-0
Cox Stats: No stats
Season Stats: No stats

Corey Hilliard, Offensive Tackle, Detroit Lions
Team Result: Beat the Minnesota Vikings, 34-24
Team Record: 1-0
Hilliard Stats: No stats
Season Stats:  No stats

Kendall Hunter, Running Back, San Francisco 49ers
Team Result: Beat the Green Bay Packers, 34-28
Team Record: 1-0
Hunter Stats: Six carries for 24 yards
Season Stats: Six carries for 24 yards

Charlie Johnson, Offensive Tackle, Minnesota Vikings
Team Result: Lost to the Detroit Lions, 34-24
Team Record: 0-1
Johnson Stats: No stats
Season Stats: No stats

Markelle Martin, Safety, Tennessee Titans
Team Result: Beat the Pittsburgh Steelers, 16-9
Team Record: 1-0
Martin Stats: No stats
Season Stats: No stats

Russell Okung, Offensive Tackle, Seattle Seahawks
Team Result: Beat the Carolina Panthers, 12-7
Team Record: 1-0
Okung Stats: No stats
Season Stats: No stats

Brandon Pettigrew, Tight End, Detroit Lions
Team Result: Beat the Minnesota Vikings, 34-24
Team Record: 1-0
Pettigrew Stats: Two catches for six yards
Season Stats: Two catches for six yards

Joseph Randle, Running Back, Dallas Cowboys
Team Result: Beat the New York Giants, 36-31
Team Record: 1-0
Randle Stats: No stats
Season Stats: No stats

Zac Robinson, Quarterback, Cincinnati Bengals
Team Result: Lost to the Chicago Bears, 24-21
Team Record: 0-1
Robinson Stats: No stats
Season Stats: No stats

Ryan Robinson, Defensive End, Oakland Raiders
Team Result: Lost to the Indianapolis Colts, 21-17
Team Record: 0-1
Robinson Stats: No stats
Season Stats: No stats

Antonio Smith, Defensive End, Houston Texans
Team Result: Plays the San Diego Chargers tonight
Team Record: N/A
Smith Stats: Plays tonight
Season Stats:  No stats

Lane Taylor, Guard, Green Bay Packers
Team Result: Lost to the San Francisco 49ers, 34-28
Team Record: 0-1
Taylor Stats: No stats
Season Stats: No stats

Brandon Weeden, Quarterback, Cleveland Browns
Team Result: Lost to the Miami Dolphins, 23-10
Team Record: 0-1
Weeden Stats: 26-for-53 for 289 yards with one touchdown and three interceptions
Season Stats: 26-for-53 for 289 yards with one touchdown and three interceptions

Kevin Williams, Defensive Tackle, Minnesota Vikings
Team Result: Lost to the Detroit Lions, 34-24
Team Record: 0-1
Williams Stats: No stats
Season Stats: No stats


Celebrating Like It’s 1988 OSU fans can relive 1988 march to the Heisman Trophy

STILLWATER -- In honor of the 25th anniversary of Barry Sanders’ 1988 Heisman season, the Oklahoma State Athletic Department is turning back time.Beginning today, the Learfield Sports radio broadcasts of that historic 1988 Cowboy football season are available at 1988, as a junior, Sanders embarked on what would become the greatest season of any running back in college football history, putting together a year that would help rewrite Oklahoma State, Big Eight Conference and NCAA record books as the Cowboys marched to a 10-2 record.Along with the OSU web site, the broadcasts are also available at ’88 season opener against Miami (Ohio) is currently available online with remaining games added throughout the fall.

2013 Hugo PRCA Rodeo entry list

Click here to download Entry A Entry B Entry C Entry D RoughStock

North and South teams split basketball games during Eastern’s 41st annual Kiamichi All-Star Classic 

WILBURTON, OK (May 26, 2013) – The North and South team split the basketball games during Eastern Oklahoma State College’s 41st annual Kiamichi All-Star Classic on May26 in Wilburton. The South girls’ basketball team pulled off a close 69-67 victory over the North team in the first game of the night. Miranda Schaefer of Wright City was named the South MVP for her 16 points and Katie Smith of Checotah was named the North MVP for her 15 points. Top scorers for the South team included Kelbie Moon of Wilburton with 11 points, Darian Bradford of Colbert with 9 points and Chelsi Thomas of Antlers with 8 points. Other top scorers for the North team included Alyssa Banks of Eufaula with 14 points, and LaNaessa Grayson of Oktaha and Colleen Peterson of Poteau with 9 points each. The South girls’ team was coached by Chris Gibbs and Dana House of Rattan and the North team was coached by Scott Gregory of Poteau. The boys’ basketball game was also close with an 87-83 North victory. Cody Robinson of Moss scored 21 points was named the North MVP. Nick Brown of Hugo led the South team with 23 points was named the South MVP. Other top scorers for the North team included Seth Youngblood and Brooks Robinson of Roland with 16 points each and Nate Hamilton of Muldrow with 14 points. Top scorers for the South team included Chandler Rickey of Broken Bow with 13 points and Clark Austin of Talihina, Austin Beene of Achille and Tyler Gibson of Wister with seven points each. The North boys’ team was coached by Ed Lewis of Roland and the South boys’ team was coached by Chris Brown of Rattan.The softball and baseball games for the Kiamichi All-Star Classic had to be postponed because of heavy rain in the area. A make-up date for the softball and baseball games has been set for Saturday, June 1. The softball game will start at 2 p.m., followed by the baseball game at 4 p.m.

Update on Tornado fatalities, injuries, missing persons

Updated fatalities/deaths/missing persons

The May 20 tornado has lead to:

377 injuries

24 deaths

All people thought missing have been accounted for at this time

Joseph Randle Drafted By Dallas Cowboys

Oklahoma State running back was the 18th pick of the fifth round.

STILLWATER – Oklahoma State running back Joseph Randle was selected by the Dallas Cowboys with the 18th pick of the fifth round in the 2013 NFL Draft. He was the 151 overall pick in the draft and joins fellow OSU products Dez Bryant and Dan Bailey with the Dallas Cowboys.

Randle was a two-time first-team All-Big 12 performer, earning the honor in both 2011 and 2012, and was a key figure in the Cowboys having one of the most feared offenses in America both seasons. With Randle starting at running back, the Cowboys were the only team in the nation to average more than seven yards per play in each of the past two seasons.

A semifinalist for the 2012 Doak Walker Award presented to the nation's top running back, Randle finished his career eighth in OSU history in career rushing yards with 3,085, fourth in career rushing touchdowns (40) and 10th in career scoring with 258 points. That point total is fourth all-time among OSU running backs.

“We’re happy that Joseph is getting the chance to live his dream by playing in the NFL and we’re excited about what the future holds for him,” Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy said. “He was a very productive player on our team and now he has the opportunity to continue the NFL running back tradition that we have established here at Oklahoma State over a number of years.”

Randle is the latest running back to come from the same Oklahoma State program that produced NFL Hall of Famers Barry Sanders and Thurman Thomas and current San Francisco 49ers back Kendall Hunter, among numerous others.

“I love Oklahoma State and the three years I spent here were the best time of my life,” Randle said. “I thank my teammates, my coaches, the fans and really everyone involved who make it a great place. I’m excited for my new opportunity and I’m ready to go after it, but I’ll always be an Oklahoma State Cowboy at heart.”


Country Super Star Ronnie Dunn reflects on the passing of George Jones Click here to Listen


Nashville, Tenn. (April 26, 2013) – Country Music Hall of Famer, Grand Ole Opry member, and Kennedy Center Honoree George Glenn Jones died Friday, April 26, 2013 at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee. He was hospitalized April 18 with fever and irregular blood pressure.
Born September 12, 1931, Jones is regarded among the most important and influential singers in American popular music history. He was the singer of enduring country music hits including “She Thinks I Still Care,” “The Grand Tour,” “Walk Through This World With Me,” “Tender Years” and “He Stopped Loving Her Today,” the latter of which is often at the top of industry lists of the greatest country music singles of all time.
“A singer who can soar from a deep growl to dizzying heights, he is the undisputed successor of earlier natural geniuses such as Hank Williams and Lefty Frizzell,” wrote Bob Allen in the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum’s “Encyclopedia of Country Music.”
Jones was born in Saratoga, Texas, and he played on the streets of Beaumont for tips as a teenager. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps before returning to Texas and recording for the Starday label in Houston, Texas. In 1955, his “Why Baby Why” became his first Top 10 country single, peaking at number four and beginning a remarkable commercial string: Jones would ultimately record more than 160 charting singles, more than any other artist in any format in the history of popular music.
Jones’ first number one hit came in 1959 with “White Lightning,” a Mercury Records single that topped Billboard country charts for five weeks. He moved on to United Artists and then to Musicor, notching hits including “She Thinks I Still Care,” “The Race Is On,” “A Good Year for the Roses” and “Walk Through This World With Me.”
Jones signed with Epic Records in 1971 and worked with producer Billy Sherrill to craft a sound at once elegant and rooted, scoring with “The Grand Tour,” “Bartenders Blues” and many more. Sherrill also produced duets between Jones and his then-wife Tammy Wynette, and in the 1970s they scored top-charting hits including “We’re Gonna Hold On,” “Golden Ring” and “Near You.”
By the time “Golden Ring” and “Near You” hit in 1976, Jones and Wynette were divorced, and Jones was battling personal demons. His solo career cooled until 1980, when he recorded “He Stopped Loving Her Today,” a ballad penned by Curly Putman and Bobby Braddock that helped Jones win Country Music Association prizes for best male vocal and top single. “He Stopped Loving Her Today” revived a flagging career, and Jones won the CMA’s top male vocalist award in 1980 and 1981. He also earned a Grammy for best male country vocal performance.
In 1983, Jones married the former Nancy Ford Sepulvado. The union, he repeatedly said, began his rehabilitation from drugs and alcohol and prolonged his life. He signed with MCA Records in 1990 and began a successful run, and he was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1992. His guest vocal on Patty Loveless’ “You Don’t Seem To Miss Me” won a CMA award for top vocal event in 1998, and it became his final Top 20 country hit.
In 1999, Jones nearly died in a car wreck, but he recovered and resumed touring and recording. He remained a force in music until his death, playing hundreds of shows in the new century and collecting the nation’s highest arts award, the Kennedy Center Honor for lifetime achievement, in 2008. In late 2012, Jones announced his farewell tour, which was to conclude with a sold-out, star-packed show at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena on November 22, 2013. Alan Jackson, Garth Brooks, Randy Travis, Charlie Daniels, Kenny Rogers, Sam Moore, The Oak Ridge Boys and many others were set to perform at Jones’ Bridgestone show.
Jones is survived by his loving wife of 30 years Nancy Jones, his sister Helen Scroggins, and by his children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews.



Trio of Cowboys Returning to Oklahoma State

STILLWATER, Okla. — Markel Brown, Le'Bryan Nash and Marcus Smart all announced their intentions to return to Oklahoma State for the 2013-14 basketball season today at the Student Union Atrium on the OSU campus. All three had been considering the opportunity to enter the National Basketball Association draft in June.

"This is an exciting time for Cowboy Basketball," said head coach Travis Ford. "All three of these guys will have an opportunity to compete at the next level. They realize and understand that the individual awards they received come from great team chemistry, playing well together as a team and winning basketball games. Staying in school also provides them with an opportunity to continue their education, which is very important to them and their families."

Nash, a two-time All-Big 12 selection, averaged 14 points and 4.1 rebounds per game as a sophomore last season. He was named All-Big 12 Third Team by the league coaches and honorable mention All-Big 12 by the Associated Press. A prolific scorer, he has 44 double-figure scoring games in his two-year career.

Brown, a unanimous second-team All-Big 12 honoree and an All-District VI selection as a junior in 2012-13, averaged 15.3 points and 4.4 rebounds per game this season. He improved his shooting averages during the offseason, shooting 36.4 percent from beyond the three-point arc. He became the second player in school history to record 200 assists, 100 steals and 75 blocked shots in a career, joining Byron Houston.

Smart, a consensus second-team All-American, led the Cowboys, averaging 15.4 points and 4.2 assists per game as a freshman. He was named both the Big 12 Conference's Player and Freshman of the Year. He received the Integris Wayman Tisdale Award as the national freshman of the year from the United States Basketball Writers Association and was a first-team All-American according to Sporting News.


"I'm very excited about next season," Ford said. "With all the players we have returning, and the addition of some extremely talented new guys, next year should be very entertaining. We're looking forward to many sold-out games inside Gallagher-Iba Arena."

With all three players coming back, Oklahoma State has the top-three returning scorers in the Big 12 Conference for the 2013-14 season. The Cowboys also return their top-seven scorers from a team that went 24-9 a year ago and was one-win shy of sharing a league title.



AT&T Official Response regarding service in Choctaw and Pushmataha Counties

Thank you for your inquiry.

As you may know, AT&T recently launched Project Velocity IP (VIP), a three-year investment initiative to expand and enhance its wireless and wireline IP broadband networks. As part of Project VIP, AT&T plans to increase the density of its wireless network by deploying more than 10,000 macro sites, more than 1,000 distributed antenna systems, and more than 40,000 small cells. Through this initiative, we also plan to:

Expand 4G LTE to cover more than 300 million people by year-end 2014

  Expand the AT&T wired IP network to 57 million customer locations, covering 75 percent of customer locations in its wired service area by year-end 2015

Expand the AT&T fiber network to reach 1 million additional business locations by year-end 2015

For more information about AT&T’s coverage in Oklahoma or anywhere in the U.S., consumers can visit the AT&T Coverage Viewer. Using the online tool, AT&T customers can measure coverage quality of coverage from a street address, intersection, ZIP code or even a landmark. For updates on the AT&T wireless network, please visit the AT&T network news page.

Thank you for your interest.

Emily Lang

Price Lang Consulting for AT&T Oklahoma

(note: links do not work, we have sent follow up questions and link corrections)




 TICKET INFO:      Available online at, Box Office, all outlets, or by calling 1-866-7-BOKCTR.     

(Tulsa, OK) January 17, 2013 – CMA Entertainer of the Year and Grammy nominee, Blake Shelton will embark on a headlining tour of the U.S. beginning July 19 in Virginia Beach, VA. The Ten Times Crazier Tour, which features special guest Mercury Recording artist, Easton Corbin, and ACM New Female Vocalist of the Year nominee, Jana Kramer, will criss-cross the country this summer.  Pre-sale information, contesting, and meet & greet opportunities will be available soon to Blake’s BS’er Fan Club members via  BS’ers is free to join. For all the up-to-date tour information, stay tuned to

Confirmed tour dates, including the stop October 4, 2013 at the BOK Center in Tulsa, are listed below.

This is Blake’s second headlining tour following last year’s sold out Well Lit & Amplified Tour. The CMA's Entertainer of the Year and three-peat Male Vocalist of the Year is coming off seven consecutive No.1 singles, 12 overall, back-to-back wins on NBC's hit show The Voice and is already celebrating his Top 20 new single, “Sure Be Cool If You Did,” which Entertainment Weekly calls “ludicrously catchy” with an A- rating. “Sure Be Cool If You Did” is Blake’s fastest rising single to date and is the first new single off his yet to be announced new album being released this spring. His recent Christmas album, Cheers, It’s Christmas received 4 ½ of 5 stars in People Magazine and The New York Times has said “…he’s becoming the most important and visible ambassador from Nashville to the American mainstream.”

“My fans, country radio, friends, family, you name it - they know I love to perform. With The Voice schedule, I was not able to go out and perform as much as I wanted last year but I plan to make up for it this year,” Blake said with a devilish smirk. “This summer is going to be a blast. I want everyone at my shows to leave feeling like they got every penny’s worth of their ticket. I am going to give them every ounce of me on that stage because they deserve it. My fans are die hard country fans, they love to laugh and have a good time and I’m going to join them in what truly will be the Ten Times Crazier Tour.”

GRAMMY nominated Blake Shelton is CMA Awards’ Entertainer of the Year and Male Vocalist of the Year for his third consecutive year. Blake is one of the "most versatile of contemporary country singers" (The New York Times). He has been nominated for five GRAMMY® Awards, including a nod for Red River Blue, the Associated Press calling the album “the best album of his career” as Country Album of the Year, won ACM’s Male Vocalist of the Year for a second time, celebrated his seventh consecutive No. 1 single (his twelfth overall), and then made history by winning three consecutive CMA Male Vocalist of the Year awards and Song of the Year with his wife and Grammy winner, Miranda Lambert. Blake’s current album, Cheers It’s Christmas, features several duet performances with multiple GRAMMY Award winning artists such as Michael Bublé, long-time friend, Reba, Miranda Lambert, Kelly Clarkson and a very special duet with his mother, Dorothy Shackleford, which they wrote together. Blake’s infectious multi-week No.1 hit, “Honey Bee" holds the record for the fastest-selling digital Platinum single for a male country solo artist.

Governor Fallin, Verizon Officials Announce Company Bringing 500 New Jobs to Tulsa Facility

OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin joined with officials from Verizon in Tulsa today to announce that the company is adding up to 500 new jobs at its North Lakewood facility in Tulsa.  The jobs will be finance and accounting positions.  The company currently employs more than 900 at the Tulsa facility. “Today’s announcement is great news for Tulsa and northeastern Oklahoma. These positions represent the kind of high-quality, good paying jobs we are working to bring to the state,” Fallin said.  “We appreciate Verizon’s investment in Oklahoma and are excited about the 500 new jobs coming to Tulsa.  Today’s announcement is another great example that our pro-growth, pro-business policies are working and are making Oklahoma an even better place to do business.”Verizon serves local, long distance, wireless and data customers in Oklahoma and has 50 retail stores and authorized agents throughout the state.  The company has nearly 1,200 employees statewide and has an annual payroll of approximately $85.3 million in Oklahoma. Verizon officials said the decision to create a financial services hub by adding up to 500 new positions in Tulsa comes after an extensive review of numerous locations across the nation.  Many factors were considered as part of the company’s search, including the quality and availability of financial services talent, quality of life considerations, the cost of living and more.  At the end of the evaluation process, Tulsa emerged as an ideal location. “Verizon has a long-standing relationship with the city of Tulsa and the state of Oklahoma. With a significant presence in Tulsa, we know from first-hand experience that Oklahoma has a business-friendly environment that encourages investment,’’ said Michelle Robinson, Verizon vice president of state government affairs. “Selecting Tulsa as a new financial services hub for Verizon allows us to take advantage of the financial services talent throughout Oklahoma. We look forward to extending our commitment to the Tulsa metropolitan area and the great of state of Oklahoma for future growth.”


OSU Announces Football Change

STILLWATER – Oklahoma State head football coach Mike Gundy has announced that defensive coordinator Bill Young will not return next season. OSU linebackers coach and co-defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer will be elevated to defensive coordinator. “We are appreciative of everything Coach Young has done for us over the past four years,” Gundy said, “but we are also excited about heading in a new direction with our defense.” Spencer just completed his fifth season at OSU. He is a 1987 Georgia Tech graduate and came to OSU after spending the 2004-2006 seasons at Duke, where he served as assistant head coach, recruiting coordinator and secondary coach.

Governor Fallin Statement on Selection of Nico Gomez to Lead Oklahoma Health Care Authority

 OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin today released the following statement on the Oklahoma Health Care Authority (OHCA) board’s selection of Nico Gomez as the new OHCA chief executive officer: “Having worked at different levels of the agency, Nico Gomez will bring valuable experience and knowledge as the new chief executive officer of the Oklahoma Health Care Authority,” Fallin said.  “I look forward to working with Nico and the OHCA on Oklahoma-based solutions to expand and improve access to quality health care for low-income Oklahomans, children, the elderly and the disabled.”



Fishing Report 

Arbuckle: July 7. Elevation 2 ft below normal, water 81 and stained to clear. Crappie good off docks using minnows and chartreuse jigs 4-12 ft and off lake brush piles on jigs in 10-25 ft. White bass are chasing the shad off windblown points and banks. White grubs seem to be good, also small crank baits. Channel catfish good off baited hole up Guy Sandy using cut baits and grasshoppers. Sunfish good around docks using worms, also fly rod bugs good in shaded areas. Bass are biting shaky head worms, crank baits, top water and weighted flukes. Report submitted by Jack Melton.


Blue River: July 8. Elevation normal, water 82 and clear. Smallmouth and spotted bass fair on topwater bait early and late and soft plastics around structure off of riffles. Channel catfish fair on chicken livers and stinkbait in deeper holes around current. Flathead catfish fair on live sunfish at night in larger pools. Sunfish excellent on meal worms, crickets. And small grubs in slack water areas. Report Submitted by Matt Gamble, fisheries biologist, Blue River Public Fishing and Hunting Area.


Broken Bow: July 7. Elevation rising, water upper 70s. Bass good on spook lures, Carolina-rigged soft plastic baits in watermelon seed and pumpkin around deep points and rock walls and on big white crankbaits around ridges in the upper end of the river and around main lake points. Catfish good on juglines and trotlines baited with cut bait and sunfish. Crappie good on small grubs in white, chartreuse and orange at 15-25 ft around brush piles. Report submitted by Dru Polk, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.


Eufaula: July 7. Elevation 1.5 ft above normal and murky. Black bass fair on plastic and spinners baits around rocky points. White bass fair on jigs near bridges. Blue catfish fair on shad and catfish bait along rocky areas of the shore. Crappie fair on minnows and jigs around boat docks, riprap, and standing timber. Report submitted by Ed Rodebush, game warden stationed in McIntosh County.


Hugo: July 7. Elevation normal, flood gates closed. Crappie fair on minnows along river channels. Catfish good on trotlines baited with sunfish and/or goldfish in the main lake. Blue catfish fair to good on stink bait below dam in shallow water. Black bass fair on spinner and topwater baits early and late around the button brush. Report submitted by Jay Harvey, game warden stationed in Choctaw and Bryan counties.


Konawa: July 8. Elevation normal, water 87 and clear. Largemouth Bass good on plastic worm and top water lure around moss beds and at 5-10 ft. Channel Catfish are good on chicken liver and cut shad around points and south cove at 10-12 ft. White and hybrid striped bass fair on spoons and jigs, schooling early and late in south cove. All other fishing slow. Report submitted by Daryl Howser, game warden stationed in Seminole County.


Lower Mountain Fork:July 8.Crayfish and minnow patterns (size 10-12) and Light Cahills (size 16) have been working well in Zone I. Zones II and III have experienced high water from generation periodically during the day. But when the water isn't too high to fish in Zone II, try streamers and midges. In Zone III fish were also caught on the Light Cahills. Report submitted by Three Rivers Fly Shop.

 McGee Creek: July 8. Elevation is normal, water is 81 and clear. Black bass fair on soft plastic lures and rattling crank baits at 2-10 ft. Crappie fair on minnows over cedar trees. White bass fair to good on crank bait at 28-35 ft. Report submitted by Arthur Young, game warden stationed in Atoka County.


Murray: July 8. Elevation 4-5 ft below normal, water 82 and clear. Largemouth and smallmouth bass schooling just before dark, good on plastic baits, worms, Texas rigs and Carolina rigs early and late. Channel catfish good at 3-4 ft around rocky structure. Crappie fair on minnows and jigs at 10-15 ft around brush structure. Report submitted by Jeremy Brothers, game warden stationed in Carter County.


Pine Creek: July 8. Elevation above normal, water clear. Bass fair on watermelon brush hogs. Crappie good on white, blue and pink jigs. Catfish good on night crawlers. Report submitted by Mark Hannah, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.


Texoma: July 7. Elevation 1.5 ft below normal, water 79 and murky far north and clear south. Largemouth and smallmouth bass good 5-15 ft in creek channels on surface lures, crankbaits and plastic baits. Striped and white bass good 10-30 ft from Burns Run to Caney Creek on live bait, surface lures and sassy shad. Channel and blue catfish good 10- 20 ft from the Washita river to Catfishbay and Sanders Island View on Red River on Live bait, worms and stink baits. Crappie good 5-15 ft in underwater brush and around the fish attractors on minnows and jigs. Sunfish good 5-10 ft around the fishing docks and fish attractors on shrimp, worms and small tube jigs. Report submitted by Danny Clubb, game warden stationed in Bryan County.


Wister: July 7. Elevation 1 ft above normal, water murky. Largemouth bass excellent on 12-inch worms, spinner baits, crankbaits, white tips and grubs. Crappie good on minnows and fair on white/pink jigs at 10-12 ft around brushy cover. Catfish excellent on rod-and-reel with live sunfish and on juglines and trot lines baited with cut bait and dead minnows. Report submitted by Randy Fennell, game warden stationed in LeFlore County.






Pic 1 Pic 2 Pic 3 Pic 4 Festival of Pumpkins Submit Photos


Paris Fire Chief Ronnie Grooms

Buffs Headed to the Playoffs

Hugo City Manager Prepares for IKE 9-12-08

US Sen. Inhofe pushing for $8 billion 9-9-08

Jerry Ellis win Senate seat 7-29-08

State Senator Sean Burrage 7-29KDOE

Dan Boren responds to primary win 7-29-08

Circus owner explains. What the elephants need

State Senator Jeff Rabon 7-29

Ed Vandergriff addresses OK Senate May 7

President-electWill Smith. .Baseball is back


Citizens urged to be prepare for IKE
World Changers in Hugo
4 lane from Sawyer to Hugo

Chainsaw Carver

New Construction 4-22-08
Murder in Hugo 05-02-08


Hugo High School proposal 04-22-08 handout