Points theater closes
By Kerry Yancey
Monitor Staff Writer
SEVEN POINTSA poor economy and no summer blockbuster movies have prompted the Main
Place Cinema to close.
Cinema manager Mary Valentin confirmed the closure Wednesday afternoon. This is our
last day, she said.
Originally built and owned by Lucy and C.D. Smith, Main Place Cinema opened in December,
2002, with two screens, showing Santa Clause 2 and the James Bond film
Die Another Day.
Always planned as a four-screen theater, the other two screens opened soon afterward.
Dec. 4, 2007, the Smiths sold the theater to Summit Events, who hired Valentin as manager.
I see the economy as one of the biggest reasons (for the closure), Valentin
said. People who used to come to the movies all the time just cant do it
It was short notice (one week), but we knew it was coming, she added.
The owners have really been working hard to keep things up.
In addition to converting one screen to enable 3-D movie showings, the owners also had to
deal with several unexpected expenses this summer, such as replacing air conditioners, she
Valentin said she had to release two employees two weeks ago, but noted the nearly
week-long closure of the State Highway 334 causeway bridge Sept. 15-22 was a crushing
When the bridge closed, it was terrible, she said. The last couple of
months have been really rough on us.
It didnt help that there wasnt a huge, runaway hit movie this summer no
Spiderman or Harry Potter so movie sales nationwide have
not been robust.
I have had some really loyal customers, our seniors, especially, Valentin
said. I hope the new theater (Moviestar Cinema in Gun Barrel City) makes enough,
because it would be terrible to lose us both.
Community support has been strong, particularly from gamers who play video games on
a big screen and the Twilight movie series buffs, she said.
The theater has sponsored a religious-themed free movie each second Tuesday, but that will
not be happening Oct. 12, she said.
Main Place Cinema is not the only area theater closing. The Majestic Theater, a fixture in
downtown Wills Point for 84 years, will be closing this weekend (see related story, page
Summit Events is not 100 percent certain what will become of the Main Place Cinema
building and property.
The owner told me he was looking at other options, she said. I
dont know what those will be.
The sad part is that this is our normal slow period. At Christmas, it picks
up, she added. We are going to miss everybody, and we wish everybody
Early voting starts Oct. 18, continues
through Oct. 29
By Barbara Gartman
Monitor Staff Writer
CEDAR CREEK LAKEIt has become the method of choice to dodge long lines at the
polling place by voting early.
This year for the Tuesday, Nov. 2, General Election, officials have predicted even more
voters will take advantage of the two-week early voting schedule from Monday, Oct. 18,
through Friday, Oct. 29.
But if you want to be able to vote, you must be registered by Monday.
More and more people are early voting, Kaufman County Tax Collector Assessor
Richard Murphy said.
In November, 2006, about 45 percent of the voters turned out for early voting. In
November, 2008, the number had increased to 65 percent, Murphy explained.
State offices include the governors race, with three candidates vying to unseat Gov.
Democrat Bill White, Libertarian Kathie Glass and Green candidate Deb Shafto are on the
Looking for the lieutenant governors seat are David Dewhearst (R), Linda
Chavez-Thompson (D), Scott Jameson (L) and Herb Gonzales Jr. (G).
Other state races include Attorney General incumbant Greg Abbott (R), challenged by
Barbara Ann Radnofsky (D) and Jon Roland (L), and Comptroller of Public Accounts incumbent
Susan Combs (R), who faces Mary Ruwart (L), Edward Lindsay (G).
Commissioner of the General Land Office candidates are incumbent Jerry Patterson (R),
Hector Uribe (D) and James Holder (L).
Candidates for Commissioner of Agriculture are incumbent Todd Staples (R), Hank Gilbert
(D) and Rick Donaldson (L).
Staples was the former representative for Henderson County in the State Senate, while
Gilbert was a former ag teacher at LaPoynor High School.
Railroad Commissioner drew four candidates, David Porter (R), Jeff Weems (D), Roger Gary
(L) and Art Browning (G).
There are also a number of supreme court justices, appellet judges and a board of
In Kaufman and Henderson counties, early voting will take place at the central courthouse
and sub-courthouses. Kaufman subcourthouses are in Forney, Kemp and Terrell and the
Crandall/Combine Center in Crandall. Sub-courthouses in Henderson County are in Seven
Points, Chandler and Brownsboro.
State Rep. Lance Gooden (R-Dist. 4) is running unopposed in the general election, as are
many Kaufman County candidates, whose seats were determined in the March primary,
including 86th Judicial Judge Howard Tygret, Criminal District Attorney Michael McLelland,
County Judge Bruce Wood, Court at Law judges Erleigh Norville Wiley and David Lewis,
District Clerk Rhonda Miller Hughey, County Treasurer Johnny Countryman and County
Surveyor Greg Sjerven.
Precinct candidates that are unopposed and declared elected are Precinct 2 Commissioner
Ray Clark and Precinct 4 Commissioner Tom Manning.
Justices of the peace Patricia Ashcroft, Mike Smith and Johnny Adams are unopposed.
About the only county office voters will have to choose between candidates is the county
clerks office, where Republican incumbent Laura Hughes will face Democrat Sophia
Henderson County voters also prefer early voting.
In 2006, early voter turnout was a bit more than 38 percent. By 2008, more than 58 percent
of Henderson County voters cast their ballots early, a 20 percent increase.
Henderson County voters will choose Robert Nichols (R) or David Scott (L) in the State
Precinct 4 county commissioner candidates are incumbent Jerry West (D) and Ken Geeslin
Precinct 4 Justice of the Peace candidates are Sue Tarrant (D) and Kelly Harris (R).
Kemp ISD voters will choose a trustee to fill an unexpired term, and Trinidad voters will
vote on a proposition to rase the cap from 3 to 5 cents for Emergency Service District No.
Candidates running unopposed include 173rd District Judge Daniel Moore, County Judge
Richard Sanders, Court at Law judges Matt Livingston and Nancy Perryman, District Clerk
Jean Godwin, County Clerk Gwen Moffeit, Treasurer Michael Bynum, Precinct 2 Commissioner
Wade McKinney and Justice of the Peace Dale Blaylock.
Those registering to vote should be U.S. citizens, county residents, aged 18 by the day of
the election, not a convicted felon who has not fully served the sentence, and not been
declared mentally incompetent.
Mediation solves little for Seven Points
By Barbara Gartman
Monitor Staff Writer
ATHENSLittle came out of a lengthy mediation process Monday involving Seven Points
Mayor Joe Dobbs, city councilman Bubba Powell, their attorneys James Owen and Steve
Starks, respectively and city attorney Blake Armstrong.
Of course there was also the unnamed mediator and Henderson County District Attorney Scott
And after nearly 12 hours, nothing was settled and no winners named, least of all the
citizens of Seven Points, who remain deprived of a functioning city council.
We mediated for almost 12 hours. Nobody left the chambers, not even for lunch,
McKee said. We had food brought in to the mediation room.
The group met at the Groom & Starks law offices in Athens.
As to what might have been said or agreed to, that remains unreported, but the mediator
told those present not to talk about the process, McKee said.
An agreement was reached to meet again at another unspecified time and place, but the
question remains whether any solution will come in time to benefit the city at this late
In addition to payroll and court fees owed to the state that are stacking up late charges,
a much sought-after grant to repair roads in the Nob Hill addition is in danger of being
lost, according to statements at the last regularly scheduled, but canceled, city council
meeting (Sept. 14).
The city has been unable to adopt a budget the fiscal year 2010 budget officially
ended Sept. 30 or to clear other items of business from its agenda, due to a lack
of a quorum.
No regular council meetings have successfully met since the election in May, and city
business is almost at an impasse, as the second approved signatory for city checks, mayor
pro tem Hank Laywell, refuses to add his signature to city checks.
Payroll for city employees has been made from other funds.
While attorneys debate what is and isnt legal, city employees are holding their
breath for each paycheck they have earned.