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Current Issue
May 29
, 2011

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Clubs and Such

 BNI (Business Network International) - Cedar Creek Professionals - meets every Wednesday at 7:30 a.m. at Comfort Suites, located at U.S. Hwy. 175 and TX 198 in Mabank. Larry Williams (903) 887-2847 or www.bnine
Boy Scout Troop #398 meets at the Cedar Creek Bible Church from 7-8:30 p.m. each Tuesday. (903) 498-5725 or (903) 498-3830.
Cedar Creek Art Society meets from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. the last Thursday of each month at the Mabank Volunteer Fire Department. A $3 donation per artist is asked.
Cedar Creek Domino Club meets each week on Wednesday at the Mabank Volunteer Fire Department. (903) 887-6549.
Cedar Creek NAR-ANON meets at 8 p.m. on Thursday at 715 S. Hwy. 274, Ste. D in Seven Points. (903) 432-2405.
Cedar Creek Narcotics Anonymous meets at 8 p.m., Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, at 715 S. Hwy. 274, Ste. D in Seven Points. (903) 432-2405.
Cedar Creek 49ers Club meets every Thursday for fellowship and dancing. Doors open at 6 p.m. The club is located off Arnold Hill Road in Seven Points. (903) 432-3552.
Cedar Creek Lake Kiwanis Club meets at noon each Wednesday at The Jalapeno Tree in Gun Barrel City, except the second week of the month, when the club meets Thursday in conjunction with the area chamber of commerce.
Cedar Creek Optimist Club meets every Tuesday at noon at the Dairy Queen in Seven Points. Danny Hampel at (903) 778-4508.
Cedar Creek Republican Club meets every fourth Thursday. (903) 887-4796.
Cedar Creek Rotary Club meets at noon each Friday at Vetoni’s Italian Restaurant. Dee Ann Owens at (903) 340-2415.
Cub Scout Pack #333 meets at the First United Methodist Church of Mabank the second and fourth Monday at 7 p.m. Mary Harris at (903) 451-5280 or Tonya Capley at (903) 498-4725.
Disabled American Veterans Chapter 101 meets the second Monday of each month at the Senior Citizens Center on Hwy. 31 in Athens.
Girl Scout Troop #112 meets at the First United Methodist Church in Mabank on Fridays at 6:30 p.m. Contact Kathey Brown email or (800) 422-2260 or visit
GriefShare Recovery support group meets at 7 p.m. each Tuesday at Cedar Creek Church of God, located at 142 Rodney Dr., Gun Barrel City. (903) 887-0293.
Gun Barrel Quilter’s Guild meets from 10 a.m. on the second Wednesday of each month at the Tri-County Library in Mabank. (903) 451-4221.
Kaufman County Republican Women’s Club meets the third Saturday of each month at the Farm Bureau Insurance Company, located at 2477 N. Hwy. 34 in Kaufman. (972) 287-1239 or (903) 880-6770.
Kemp Kiwanis Club meets at noon each Thursday at La Fuente Mexican Restaurant in Kemp. Dr. Jim Collinsworth at (903) 887-7486.
Lake Area Council of the Blind meets at 6 p.m. on the second Saturday of the month at West Athens Baptist Church.
Lake Area Democrats Club meets at 6:30 p.m. on the third Tuesday of the month at the Library at Cedar Creek Lake in Seven Points. Email bhanstrom@embarq for more information.
Mabank Al-Anon Family Group meets at 6 p.m. on Tuesdays at Mabank First Baptist Church Fellowship Hall. Families of alcoholics are welcome. (903) 887-2781.
Mabank/Cedar Creek Area Lions Club meets at 6:30 p.m. on the fourth Tuesday of each month at the Tri-County Library in Mabank. (903) 887-5252.
Mabank Garden Club meets at 1:45 p.m. at the Tri-County Library on the third Tuesday of every month (different times in May and December).
Mabank TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) meets at 5:30 p.m. Monday at Mabank First Baptist Church. (903) 887-7700 or (903) 451-0126.
Oak Harbor/Tanglewood Crime Watch meets at 7 p.m. on the second Tuesday of the month at the R.T. Beamguard Community Center in Oak Harbor.
Rainbow Girls, Masonic Youth organization meets on the second and fourth Saturdays at 10 a.m. at the Cedar Creek Masonic Lodge. Donna Dean at ddean45@
Roddy Masonic Lodge meets at 6:30 p.m. the second Monday each month. (903) 887-6201.
RootSeekers meet at 7 p.m. on the third Monday of the month in the Tri-County Library in downtown Mabank.
Southeast Kaufman County Senior Citizens Center Board of Directors meets at 1 p.m. on the fourth Thursday of each month at the center, located at 300 N. Dallas Street in Kemp. (903) 498-2140.
Tamarack Ladies Club meets at 11 a.m. the first Wednesday of each month at the TLC Hall.
Trinity Valley Community College Band meets at 7 p.m. every Tuesday in the TVCC band hall. Group is open to any community member who plays an instrument. (903) 675-6222.
Trinity Valley Singles Support Group meets at 7 p.m. each Monday at Athens First United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall on Lovers Lane. This is a support group for singles of all ages. Jean Love at (903) 451-4697 or Donna Stinson (903) 675-7270.


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Lake Life

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Martins Mill sweeps Class A state academic championship; gains more points than all classes
Mabank resident takes state Editorial Writing award
By Terry Britt
Monitor Staff Writer

MARTINS MILL– For its growing book of accomplishments, Martins Mill High School’s University Interscholastic League (UIL) academics program may have just added its biggest chapter yet.
The school clinched the Class A team championship May 5-7, the first of Van Zandt County’s seven high schools to reach that pinnacle.
Even more awe-inspiring are some of the individual performances and the accompanying stories. They include a dynamic freshman-senior duo in poetry interpretation, one student who placed in three different events and single-handedly accounted for 42 of the school’s points, and a first-ever state championship in journalism — even though no journalism course is offered at the school.
Perhaps the biggest story-within-a-story centers on a young lady who was not even sure she wanted to be at Martins Mill before the school year began.
Less than nine months after opting to transfer from Mabank ISD, Martins Mill freshman Autumn Osborne is no longer just the new girl at school. She is the Class A state champion and Tops In Texas (best of all five classification levels) in editorial writing.
In a nutshell, it was a remarkable three days in Austin for Osborne and her Martins Mill teammates.
“I was thrilled when they started announcing results for editorial writing and I realized I had won the state championship,” Osborne said. “It was so completely unexpected.
“But then to win the Tops in Texas award, you can’t even imagine what that feeling was like,” she added.
Osborne transferred to Martins Mill at the start of the school year after her mother, Marie Osborne, was hired to teach English.
“It was not an easy decision, whether to stay at Mabank or come to Martins Mill so I could be with her. It was such a big transition,” Autumn said.
As big a change as switching schools was for her, coming into the Martins Mill UIL Academics program turned out to be even more of a challenge.
“I was not prepared for how rigorous UIL was here,” Osborne said. “In my first practice session, I thought I did well with the paper I turned in, and instead I was told it was not anywhere near the structural format and not as precise as it needed to be.
“It was kind of a slap to the face, that realization that everything was not right with my work,” she added.
If it was a rude awakening for Osborne, it had the desired effect.
Sticking with the program, Osborne worked throughout the school year on conciseness and structure in her editorial writing.
Like so many of the UIL Academics participants at Martins Mill, Osborne also had that desire to win at spring meets.
About the editorial writing event, she said, “I love the competition itself, and the fact that you get to argue your point about a subject in a professional way.
“Another way it has helped me is I now can see both sides of a story and decide for myself which side makes more sense or seems more valid,” Osborne said.
That is what the event is built upon. Editorial writing contestants are given a paper detailing arguments for both sides of a particular issue. They are then given a 45-minute period to write an editorial supporting one side of the issue, using the points presented as well as any additional ones they can offer.
Osborne’s spectacular achievement at state complimented three other students placing in journalism events — Natalie Watts took second in headline writing, Sarah Webster finished third in news writing and Seth Stephens placed sixth in editorial writing.
The journalism team championship that resulted is even more impressive from a school that lacks any journalism courses, or a school newspaper, for that matter.
However, journalism coach and UIL Academics coordinator Meredith Daniel said she knew the students had the potential to perform well in Austin.
“Fortunately, as their English teacher, I get to see the quality of their writing on a day-to-day basis,” Daniel said. “Still, the fact that we do not have journalism courses here means these students do everything completely outside school hours.
“They are a really dedicated group of writers who pushed each other throughout the year,” she added.
State domination
The 139 total points for Martins Mill at the state meet says just about everything that needs saying.
The school’s official status as Class A state champions was merely awaiting the results of the one-act play competition.
Daniel explained that the school nearest them in the points standings was also in the one-act play finals but could not have gained enough points to catch Martins Mill.
The 139 points had another unofficial honor in being the most of any classification. Better yet, the state title comes at the expense of regional rival Lindsay, who had won eight of the last 10 Class A academic championships, the last four in a row.
“I’ve had the opportunity to coach some great students over the years, but never a group like this. I believe this year we had the most contestants and most state qualifiers in school history,” Daniel said.
“Thursday night at the state meet, when we ended the day with 51 points already, I knew we had something to build on. We were already 31 points in the lead,” she added.
That was before the meet got into the events where Martins Mill is an annual contender, literary criticism and spelling/vocabulary.
The literary criticism team of Zak Tharp, Seth Stephens, Natalie Watts and Cassie Reese ended atop the list. Daniel, though, said initially there was cause for concern.
“The literary criticism tests are getting harder and harder every year. Scores were down for everybody this year,” she said.
“This team was another example of competition among the teams making everybody perform better,” Daniel continued. “It also proves how important your fourth person on the team can be … Cassie Reese’s score at the regional meet (used in a tiebreaker) is why we got to state in the first place.”
The Spelling and Vocabulary team of Tamara Gamow, Megan LaFleur, Tori Dooley and Daniel Clark gave the school its second state championship in three years in that event.
“This was a team of real go-getters,” said event coach Terri Sartain. “They are self-motivated students with a desire to win.”
As an example, she noted Gamow, who finished third in the state meet, typed and studied 10 years of previous state-level competition words in preparation for this year’s meet.
Another bright spot for Martins Mill was poetry interpretation competitors Emily Williams, a senior, and Donald Jackson, a freshman. Those two finished third and fourth, respectively, at the state meet, while Zak Tharp placed third in prose interpretation.
“I’ve worked with some gifted kids before, but Emily, Donald and Zak have been a trio like none other. In the finals room for poetry interpretation, they all went with comedic pieces that relied so much on timing, and I thought Emily and Donald nailed it perfectly,” Daniel said.
If there was an absolute all-star for Martins Mill at the state meet, though, it would have to be Seth Stephens. By the end of the weekend, he was wearing five state medals.
“Seth went 3-for-3 placing in events at the state meet. He was personally responsible for 42 of our total points. That is just amazing,” said Daniel.

































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