What's Open On Thanksgiving Day?

There are quite a few businesses that will be closed today due to the Thanksgiving Holiday.  Of course, government offices, banks and the post office will be closed, but if you need some last minute items for your Turkey Day celebration, you still have some options.

Walmart will be closed today.  They announced back in the summer that they would be closing today to give their employees the holiday with their families.  But, you can still go to Dollar General Stores.  According to Dollar General’s website, their stores in Chattooga County will be open from 7 AM until 5 PM.

If a grocery store is what you’re looking for, you will need to get to Ingles in Summerville before they close at 4 PM this afternoon; or you can go to Lucky’s in Menlo before 2 PM.  United Grocery is closed all day today.

According to their web site, CVS in Summerville will be open from 8 AM until 9 PM today, but the pharmacy will be closing at 2 PM.


Floyd Medical Center Earns National Patient Safety & Medical Excellence Recognition

Floyd Medical Center has been recognized as a leader in the nation, state and region for patient safety and medical excellence by CareChex ® Awards by Quantros.

For Patient Safety in Overall Medical Care, Floyd Medical Center has been recognized as the No. 1 hospital in the state and local market and:
– Top 10 Percent in the Nation
– Top 100 in the Nation
– Top 10 Percent in the Region

Floyd was also awarded for being in the Top 10 Percent in the State for Overall Hospital Care for Patient Safety.
The following treatment areas were recognized for being among the Top 100 hospitals in the nation and in the Top 10 percent nationwide for Patient Safety for 2021:
– Gastrointestinal care
– Pulmonary care
– Spinal fusion
– Spinal surgery

Top 10 percent in the nation recognition for Patient Safety was also earned for:
– Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
– Heart attack treatment
– Major bowel procedures
– Neurological care
– Major orthopedic surgery
– Pneumonia care

CareChex also awarded Floyd for being in the Top 10 percent in the nation in Medical Excellence in 2021 for the following treatment areas:
– Neurological care
– Sepsis care
– Spinal surgery
– Women’s health

“Receiving the 2021 CareChex Awards by Quantros is an indicator that Floyd Medical Center is focused on providing patients in our community with high-quality health care,” said Dr. Sheila Bennett, Executive Vice President and Chief of Patient Services at Floyd. “The achievement of recognition does not happen by chance. Our staff strives to continually improve the care we provide to the community, and we are honored to receive recognition on a regional, state and national level.”

CareChex® Awards are powered by the Quantros Quality Outcomes Analytics Software. Quantros is a leading provider of software-based solutions and services to healthcare. Unlike other publicly available award rankings, CareChex awards are based on comprehensive risk-adjustment methodology and do not include any self-reported data.

Visit https://www.floyd.org/about-floyd/Pages/Quality.aspx to learn more about recognition Floyd has received for quality care.

BBB Working To Keep Holidays Scam-Free

The unofficial start to the holiday season kicks off the day after Thanksgiving with Black Friday, followed by Small Business Saturday, Cyber Monday, and Giving Tuesday. The up tempo start for thieves and scammers, not coincidentally, begins at the same time.  Your BBB is on the front lines fighting to help ensure the holidays are scam-free.

There’s an element that cares nothing for holidays other than what they can steal from people. Consumers must be on a heightened sense of scam awareness during the holidays or they will get ripped off by skilled thieves. Go to BBB.org to help stay up on the latest scams and frauds.

“Shop Safe. Shop Smart.”


Black Friday


Small Business Saturday


Cyber Monday


Giving Tuesday


Business Tip: Get your Business Ready for the Holidays…2020 Style


Looking for Season’s Hot Toy? Beware


Travel Safe this Holiday


Gift Exchanges on Social Media are Illegal Pyramid Schemes


Dealing with Holiday Pop-Up Shops


Counterfeit Product Scams


Online Shopping Available For EBT Users

EBT Card users in Georgia now have more options available to order food online for delivery or pickup from Walmart, Amazon and Aldi supermarkets.  Chattooga County DFCS Director Kim Ballard Humphrey tells WZQZ News that EBT cardholders can shop safely online and utilize their Electronic Benefit Transfer card. If you have questions or need more information, you can contact the Chattooga County Department of Family and Children’s Services at 706-857-0845.

Scammer Tries To Impersonate Sheriff Schrader

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Scammers are alive and well and trying to impersonate Sheriff Mark Schrader.  But if you’re going to try to impersonate the sheriff, you should at least know how to pronounce his last name.

Recently, Mrs. Melinda Durham contacted the Summerville Police Department advising that she had received 4 phone calls from someone claiming to be Sheriff Mark Schrader. The person claiming to be the Sheriff had a heavy accent and could not pronounce his last name properly. The caller asked for Mrs. Durhams social security number, which she provided. Then they called back 3 more times within 20 minutes. The Summerville Police office called the Sheriffs office but couldn’t confirm that anyone there had called the complainant.

Mrs. Durham was advised to contact the social security office at the earliest date and to also contact the Sheriffs Department as well.

Summerville Police Investigate Identity Theft

The Summerville Police Department is investigating a potential case of identity theft.

On November 19th, officers met with Mr. Christopher Moore in regards to a possible identity theft. Mr. Moore stated that he had recently been informed about an existing account being open with USAA bank.

Upon contacting USAA, Mr. Moore was advised that the account in question had been opened in 2017 and was flagged as a potential fraudulent account. USAA did allow the account to be closed by Mr. Moore, but they could not provide any further information to him about the account.

At this time Mr. Moore does not have any knowledge of being deprived of any money due to the fraudulent account.

This case is still active

Law Enforcement Encourages Safe Holiday Driving

Local law enforcement and the Georgia State Patrol are encouraging motorist to play it safe during the Thanksgiving Holiday Travel Period that began at 6 PM yesterday evening.

During the 2019 Thanksgiving holiday, the Georgia State Patrol investigated 615 crashes, resulting in 287 injuries. Statewide, there were 12 fatal crashes, resulting in 12 deaths.  Of those crashes, GSP investigated nine fatal crashes resulting in nine fatalities.  In addition to crash investigations, Troopers and Officers arrested 343 people for driving under the influence, while issuing 11,935 citations and 16,243 warnings.

AAA projects traveling by automobile to fall 4.3%, to 47.8 million travelers and account for 95% of all holiday travel.  They also add those who decide to travel are likely to drive shorter distances and reduce the number of days they are away, making road trips the dominant form of travel this Thanksgiving.

Here are some travel tips to keep in mind this holiday weekend:

  • Obey the posted speed limit. When you exceed the speed limit, you reduce the amount of available time needed to avoid a traffic crash.
  • Do not drive impaired. Designate a sober driver, call a taxi, rideshare service, friend, or family member to help you get home safely.
  • Buckle Up! Make sure everyone in the vehicle wears a seatbelt and that children are properly restrained in the appropriate child safety seats.  Georgia law requires children under the age of eight to be in either a car seat or booster seat suitable for their age, weight, and height.
  • Pay attention to the road. Limit your distractions.  Never use electronic devices to text or surf the web while driving.  The Hands-Free Georgia Act prohibits all drivers from using hand-held cell phones while driving.
  • Plan your trip. Minimize the number of stops towards your destination, pack meals, extra snacks and drinks, as well as an emergency roadside kit.
  • Do not leave children and pets in hot cars. Regularly check the back seat and back floor area for children and animals, each time you exit your vehicle.
  • Stay alert of your surroundings and show common courtesy to other motorists and pedestrians on the roads.
  • Wear a mask and practice social distancing while in public places such as grocery stores, restaurants, bars, and other inside places.  Continue these practices on beaches and parks.

Arrest Report - Wednesday November 25, 2020

Here is the latest arrest report from the Chattooga County Sheriff’s Office for Wednesday November 25, 2020:

Chattooga School Nutrition Announcement

The goal of Chattooga School Nutrition is to make sure students have access to healthy meals. Therefore, if your student is unable to attend school due to a classroom or grade level quarantine for the week of November 30th-December 4th, you may pick-up meals for your student(s) on Monday, November 30th. Pick-up will be offered between 12 PM and 1 PM at all school locations. Students do not need to be present to receive meals. School Nutrition staff members will provide a week’s worth of meals at the time of pick-up to avoid the need to have families return each day. If you have any questions please contact Brandie Wooten, School Nutrition Director, at 706-859-3054.

Local Congregation Goes To Online Services Due To COVID Cases

One local congregation made the decision to go to all online services for the remainder of the month due to a spike in COVID-19 cases in the area.

The elders at Pleasant Grove church of Christ made the decision last week to broadcast their Sunday services online rather than have in-person worship.  They are live streaming their 9 AM and 5 PM worship services.  The elders of the church say that they will reevaluate their situation at the end of the month to determine if they will have in-person services for December.

Also, Pleasant Grove is sponsoring a program on Sunday’s on WZQZ 99.1 FM and AM 1180.  The International Gospel Hour airs from 9 AM until 9:30 AM each Sunday.

You can read more about the International Gospel Hour HERE

You can also listen to the program on demand on WZQZ’s “Church News” page on our website.

City Of Summerville Announces Thanksgiving Holiday Closing

City Offices Will be Closed Thursday Nov 26th and Friday Nov 27th in observance of the Thanksgiving Holiday.
In the event of an emergency, please call 911.

Veteran Jarrett back at the NFR

By Ted Harbin:

The first time Ryan Jarrett qualified for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in 2005, he was just 21 years old and looked like he could go days without shaving.

Much has changed in the 16 years since, but Jarrett continues to be among the greatest cowboys to have ever played the game. He returns for his 12th trip to the NFR, set for Dec. 3-12 at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas.

During that initial championship, the Georgia-born cowboy qualified in both tie-down roping and steer wrestling, then left Las Vegas as the third-youngest all-around world champion in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association’s history – only legends Ty Murray and Jim Shoulders were younger.

Since then, Jarrett has dabbled in multiple events, but he’s maintained a focus on tie-down roping. He’s only missed out on playing on rodeo’s grandest stage just four times in his storied career, including the 2019 season when he finished the regular season 22nd in the world standings – only the top 15 on the money list in each event qualify for the NFR.

“It damn sure feels good to know I’ve still got it and can still finish the year in the top 15,” said Jarrett, 36, originally from Summerville, Ga., but now living in Comanche with his wife, Shy-Anne, and daughter, Jurnee. “I’m really excited that it’s going to be in Texas. It’ll be a different atmosphere not being in Las Vegas this year, but it’s nice that it’ll be close to home.”

It’s just a 140-mile venture from his home to his playground for 10 December nights, compared to nearly 1,000 miles for his previous NFRs. Alas, because of the COVID-19 global pandemic, Las Vegas was not an option to host ProRodeo’s grand finale in 2020. When Texas offered up the home of the Rangers and the 2020 World Series, the cowboys made the one-year move to ensure the championship took place in a wild and unpredictable year.

“It’s been quite the experience,” said Jarrett, who credits his sponsors – Wrangler, Cactus Ropes, WW Livestock, PHT Products and Outlaw Equine – with helping get up and down the road, especially during a tumultuous season. “We did pretty good getting entered so we didn’t have many all-night drives, but we sure put on some miles.

“We had a lot of guidelines that you had to follow, and you’d get aggravated with it, but you still want to have the event. I felt like everybody did their part to make sure we had rodeos to go to this year.”

That was key. In a normal year, the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association has around 700 events across North America. In 2020, more than half of them were canceled, including many of the largest rodeos. That meant fewer opportunities and more miles between the rodeos that did take place.

“When you got there, I’d say there were 150 guys at dang near every rodeo you went to,” he said. “That makes it even tougher, because everything has to go just right for you to win anything.”

In rodeo, there are no guaranteed incomes. Contestants must pay an entry fee in order to compete, and they only receive a salary at each rodeo if they do better than most do the field. In tie-down roping, the faster the run, the bigger the paycheck, and there were fewer of them to go by.

Jarrett enters this year’s NFR 11th in the world standings after having earned $52,080. While leader Shad Mayfield has a big advantage – Mayfield sits No. 1 with $156,668 – the rest of the field is

clumped together. Jarrett is just $15,000 behind the No. 2 man, four-time world champion Tuf Cooper. That ground could be made up on opening night.

“Looking back at the season, there were a lot of rodeos that were one-headers,” Jarrett said, referring to one-round rodeos instead of events that featured multiple rounds; by not dividing the money up with more rounds and the aggregate payout, it offers bigger dollars to its top finishers. “I shortened the start, and I finished with a wrap and a hooey quite a bit.”

In essence, he took more chances. In timed events, cattle receive a head start based on a barrier system; if Jarrett didn’t allow the calf its appropriate start, then he’d break the barrier. Every broken barrier included a 10-second penalty, meaning he would finish out of the money. Jarrett made sure to be on the barrier each run, risking the potential penalty.

He also made one wrap around the calf’s legs instead of two before putting together the final half-hitch to secure the tie. The risk was potentially allowing the calf to break the tie before six seconds elapsed, which would have resulted in a no-time.

That was definitely bounty in his risk-reward moves. With COVID breathing down his neck all season long, it was well worth it. When he wasn’t on the road, he allowed himself to enjoy his time at home, which is quite uncommon for ProRodeo cowboys that make their livings traveling North America one rodeo at a time.

“When everything shut down, I was contemplating going out to California for that West Coast run, and it all got canceled,” he said “It didn’t bother me whatsoever. Thankfully I’ve got a little business that I can have a little income when I’m not rodeoing.

“Plus, it was nice being around here and watching her every day, being around her and getting to hang out with her.”

“Her” is Jurnee, who is 21 months old and the apple of her daddy’s eye. She already has a pony to ride and by following in the footsteps of her cowboy daddy, cowgirl mommy and family of true hands around livestock, she’ll likely be involved in the family business as she matures.

This will be her first NFR experience, and though she won’t remember any of it except through videos and images, it’s part of a life in which she is being raised.

Over the last 16 years, Ryan Jarrett has seen a great deal. He went from being a young lad with a wide grin and a well-deserved gold buckle to now serving as a veteran cowboy who can figure out a way to win in the toughest of conditions. He’ll utilize every experience possible as he runs 10 calves inside a baseball stadium in north Texas.

“I know I just need to rope smart, because they pay in the average,” Jarrett said, referring to the top times in the 10-run aggregate. “If you don’t have the best throw, just make sure you get him around the neck. I’m not against throwing my rope when I need to, but I don’t need to just do it to try to be fast.

“When you rope smart, you give yourself a better chance to win.”

DOT Suspends Construction-Related Lane Closures For Holiday Travel Period

To ease Thanksgiving traffic congestion statewide, Georgia Department of Transportation (Georgia DOT) announced the suspension of construction-related lane closures on heavily traveled interstate highways and state routes from 6 a.m. Wed., Nov. 25 to 5 a.m. Monday, Nov. 30. The statewide lane restrictions help to reduce traffic congestion during the Thanksgiving holiday. Similar restrictions will be in place for Christmas and New Year’s.

“Construction-related lane closures will be limited over the Thanksgiving holiday to ease congestion on state routes,” said District Six Engineer Grant Waldrop. “Please follow speed limits, stay alert, and don’t touch your cell phones while you’re behind the wheel.”

A Safe Driving Media Toolkit is available that includes interview opportunities with GDOT experts and Georgia State Patrol officers, broll, pre-recorded clips of spokespeople addressing safe driving and what motorists can do to protect themselves and others, and materials and resources for use in coverage on safe driving during the holiday season.

While the road closures will be suspended, the department reminds travelers to exercise caution as crews may still work near highways, and safety concerns may require some long-term lane closures to remain in place. In addition, incident management or emergency, maintenance-related lane closures could become necessary at any time on any route.

For up-to-date information about travel conditions on Georgia’s interstates and state routes, call 511 or visit www.511ga.org before heading out. 511 is a free service that provides real-time statewide information on Georgia’s interstates and state routes, including traffic conditions, incidents, lane closures, and delays due to inclement weather 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Callers can also transfer to operators to request HERO assistance in metro Atlanta or CHAMP service on highways in other regions of the state.

GSP Stops High-Speed Chase With "PIT" Maneuver

Chattooga County Sheriff’s deputies and the Georgia State Patrol were involved in a high speed pursuit over the weekend that ended in the suspect’s vehicle overturning.

On Saturday November 21st, Chattooga County E911 dispatched a BOLO for a vehicle involved in a hit and run accident near Scott Hill Rd on GA 1 in the Gore Area.

On duty officer, Deputy Sprague, observed a vehicle matching the description near Butler Dairy Rd that had obvious damage to it. Upon attempting to perform a traffic stop on the suspect, the suspect decided to instead flee the scene. The deputy was able to follow the suspect as they traveled down GA 1 and turned west onto Hwy 48. Deputies were able to setup spike strips on Hwy 48 as the suspect neared.

After hitting the spike strips the suspect turned onto Fish Hatchery Rd. where a GSP Trooper was able to perform a PIT maneuver causing the suspects vehicle to wreck and roll over.

The suspect, Tyler Reece from Hiram GA, was removed from the wrecked vehicle and placed under arrest. Reece was transported to the hospital by EMS to be evaluated for injuries.

Chattooga Indians Playoff Game Time Moved

The Chattooga Indians are headed into the Region 7AA postseason as the fourth seed and will be taking on South Atlanta in a game scheduled for this weekend – details of that game have changed several times over the past two days.

The Indians fourth seed placement was secured when Gordon Central won their final game of the season last Saturday and on Sunday, it was made official that the Indians would be playing South Atlanta.  At first, the game was scheduled for Friday, but because there were not enough GHSA officials available to officiate the game on Friday, the game was moved to Saturday.

Yesterday, WZQZ learned that the game time has been moved to a 5:30 PM kickoff this Saturday.

The Atlanta City School System does not allow fans in the stands for the game, so only the football team, school officials and the media will be allowed at this Saturday’s game.

WZQZ’s Barry Peppers will have the North Georgia Equipment Sales – Husqvarna Pregame Show at 5 PM on 99.1 FM and you can hear all the action on the WZQZ Facebook Page as well.

Recount Continues In Chattooga County

The recount of the 2020 General Election will continue today in Chattooga County.

The recount began on Tuesday in the office of Chattooga County Election Superintendent and Probate Judge Becky Duke.

The recount was mandated by Georgia’s Secretary of State after President Trump’s campaign requested a recount for the entire state.  Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger has said that he does not expect the recount to change the outcome.  Governor Brian Kemp certified Georgia’s election results last week.

The Chattooga County Registrar’s Office released the following statement on Tuesday evening:

The recount will continue at 9 am on November 25 in the election superintendent’s office in the courthouse.

So far, all of the Advance Voting, Absentee By Mail Ballots, and Provisional Ballots have been scanned and tabulated.

Local Grocery Stores Closing Early On Thanksgiving Day

If you still need a few items for your Thanksgiving meal, you may want to swing by and pick them up today, or make plans to get them early on Thanksgiving Day.

Earlier this summer, Walmart announced it would close its stores for Thanksgiving as a way to thank employees for their work during the pandemic. That means all Walmart and Sam’s Club locations will be closed tomorrow, Thursday, November 26th.  The company said stores would operate as normal today, which means they will remain open until 11 PM.

Lucky’s Supermarket in Menlo will be open on Thanksgiving Day, but according to the store’s Facebook Page, they will be closing early at 2 PM so employees can spend the rest of the holiday at home.

Ingles Supermarket employees said that the store in Summerville will be closing at 4 PM on Thanksgiving Day.

United Grocery in Summerville will be closed on Thanksgiving. The company posted on their website that they want their employees to enjoy the holiday with their families.


Georgia Extension "Turkey-Time Tips"

Arrest Report - Tuesday November 24, 2020

Here is the latest arrest report from the Chattooga County Sheriff’s Office for Tuesday November 24, 2020:

LaFayette Ramblers Headed To Playoffs For The First Time In 27 Years

For the first time in almost three decades, the LaFayette Ramblers are headed for playoff action this year in Georgia Region 6AAA postseason play.

The Rambler Football program is celebrating it’s first appearance in the playoffs in 27 years. With a 4 and 5 season record, the Ramblers have the fourth seed in Region 6-triple-A.  Their next contest is an away-game at Cherokee Bluff, the Region 7 champs.

Cherokee Bluff is located in Flowery Branch in Hall County.

Rambler fans are invited to a “Send Off” Parade through the square in LaFayette this Friday at 2 PM – in honor of the football team, cheerleaders and the Rambler Band.