October: FFA tops in nation


(1) The Switzerland County FFA chapter was honored at the National FFA Convention as the top chapter in the entire nation in the area of Chapter Development.

Local chapter members Jamie Phipps and Carrie Truax made the chapter’s presentation at the National Convention to a panel of experts from across the country, and then were on stage with the final announcement was made.

(2) Switzerland County High School seniors nominated Beth Abbott and Mark Sharp to represent them at the Versailles Pumpkin Show; and Kyle Green and Rachel Gurley to represent them at the Aurora Farmers Fair.

Kyle Walcott was selected by the students at the Southeastern Career Center to represent them at the Aurora Farmers Fair.

(3) Students at Switzerland County High School and the entire Switzerland County community mourned the loss of Dillon Henry.

The high school junior died after being involved in a four-wheeler accident near Fairview.

(4) Sherry Houze, a former resident of Switzerland County, is now having a successful career as the executive chef at the Indiana Memorial Union on the campus of Indiana University in Bloomington.

She has been holding down her responsibilities for 10 years; and prior to that was very involved here in Switzerland County, including serving as the President of the Chamber of Commerce.

(5) “Under the Big Top – Mackay’s Mighty Small Circus” was featured at the Switzerland County Historical Museum.

The 1,200 miniatures covered 112-square feet, and featured everything from circus animals to tents to performers. The display was brought to the museum as part of the “Storyfest” event, and was sponsored by the United Way of Switzerland County.

(6) The Federal Emergency Management Agency - FEMA – officially designated Switzerland County as a disaster area, making residents here eligible for state and federal assistance.

The designation comes on the heels of the county being hit by heavy winds from Hurricane Ike last month.

(7) The annual car show that was again held in the Paul Ogle Riverfront Park was a big success, with more than 200 vehicles on display along the river.

The annual “Sleepy Hollow” festival in downtown Vevay and around the courthouse was also a big success, as crafters and vendors showed off their items to a big crowd.

(8) The Ohio River Valley Conference cross country meets are now referred to as the “Switzerland County Invitationals” after sweeping the boys and girls races.

For the boys, Clay Meyer was the individual champion, and the Pacers placed five team members on the All Conference team: Clay Meyer, Corey McFarland, Tray Meyer, Josh Hon, and Anthony Dennis.

For the girls, earning All Conference honors were: Bre Hinman, Amber Meli, Allie Mathews, and Andrea Brogan.

Both high school cross country teams then advanced to the Regional, as Clay Meyer finished second overall to lead the boys team.

He would then become the first Switzerland County athlete or team to earn a Regional title when he won the overall individual title at the following week’s Regional.

The Middle School cross country teams would also sweep the conference meet; with boys team members Braden Burk, Tanner Gray, Talen Taylor, and Dakota Taylor earning All Conference honors; as did girls team members Paige Freeman, Robin Furnish, Taryn Parr, and Bri Meli.

(9) Switzerland County Elementary School teacher Kathy Keith was honored as the “Teacher of the Year” by the Madison Walmart store.

She received a plaque at a school assembly, and the school also was awarded a $1,000 cash gift. She has taught at Switzerland County Elementary for 25 years.

(10) Indiana Secretary of State Todd Rokita came to Switzerland County in October to present two longtime election workers with a special award.

Democrat Gretchen Knox and Republican Belvadean Andrew were both named as “Honorary Secretary of State” – the highest award that the Secretary of State’s office can bestow.