Polls are open for the 2023 Upson Beacon Readers’ Choice Awards… We’re kicking off this series to offer our community a way to recognize who you believe to be the best and brightest in Upson County. Vote by nominating your favorite elected official, public official, business, or customer service person in Upson, and your name will go into a drawing for $50 cash… Original newspaper ballots are the only acceptable ballots… Readers' Choice Awards voting ends Friday, Jan. 27 at 5 p.m. Results will be published in the Feb. 1 issue of the Upson Beacon.

Congratulations to Sherri Wilder… Sherri is a proud Delta Sigma Theta and was recognized by Chapter President Kasie C. Swayne… Sherri received the Delta Sigma Theta President's Award for all her hard work and accomplishments… She received it on Delta Sigma Theta 110th Founders Day… If you know Sherri, you aren’t surprised… She’s pretty amazing.

Prayers for… Betty Lord, who has pneumonia and has had it pretty rough lately.

Black History Month… Every February, people across the United States pay homage to prominent African American and black figures who have had impact on the world in various ways. Each year, doctors, film stars, writers, directors, athletes, and politicians are just some of the people highlighted as individuals of merit. The official observance of Black History Month, sometimes referred to as African American History Month in certain areas, is relatively recent, though the contributions of black people have been celebrated for centuries… Black History Month would not receive national recognition in the United States until 1976, when President Gerald Ford officially recognized it as an opportunity to honor the accomplishments of black Americans throughout history.

Groundhog Day falls on the Feb. 2 for a reason... It’s what’s known as a “cross-quarter” day, meaning it falls at the midpoint between one season and another. In the case of Feb. 2, it’s the cross-quarter day that falls between the winter solstice and the spring equinox, making it the ideal time to consider whether spring will arrive early… the very first Groundhog Day was celebrated in 1886… back then, they ate the little dude… Phil has a 39 percent accuracy rate… General Beauregard Lee will make his debut at 7:30 a.m. at Dauset Trails Nature Center… Beau’s accuracy rate is about 60 percent… If he doesn’t give me an early Spring, I will have no other choice but to hunt him down and eat him.

Happy belated birthday to… Brenda Watson and Cooter Waller… and to Jesse Rogers, who celebrated his 80th birthday last week, and Mrs. Marijo Stevens, who celebrated her 85th… Hope your birthdays were grand.

Happy birthday wishes are extended to… Kay Denby, Beth Peacock, Ricky Phillips, Debra Vaughn, Jade Shumate, Jordan McPhee, Jan. 25… Lisa Ryals, Denise Searcy, Kelly Moseley, Ray Holloway, Beverly York, Nolan Riggins, Sierra Bates, Justin Gilbert, Kendall Hankinson, Ron Bickley, Jan. 26… Chad Woodard, Harley Beverly, Keith Haygood, Kyle Littlejohn, Dylan Taylor, Jennifer Whitmire, Wanda Harp, Janiahh Glanton, Elizabeth Robins, Julie Reeves, Hazel Trice, who is celebrating her 93rd birthday, Brandy Salter, Jan. 27… Marie Pruett, Leslie Bonner, Karen Kennedy, Sonny Miller, Liz Alsobrook, Adam Hipps, Richard Creamer, Ben Daniel, Donna Coggins, Jan. 28… Sarah Armstrong, Kirksley Wainwright, Natalia Banks, John Price, Keith Adams, Michael Schiraldi, Cameron Simms, Julie Boyt, Amy Peacock, Ashley Holt, Jan. 29… Willie Raybon, Shelby German, Chris Benton, Misty Haggerty, Claire Watkins, Cynthia Elaine Jenkins, Skyla Gillis, Mary Beth Powers, Jan. 30… Harold Ellington, Nicky Hamby, Jimmie Lee Wilson, Kim Angel Kester, John Hightower, Lilly Tucker, Kala Smith, Danny McDonald, Jan. 31… We wish for all celebrating birthdays, many more happy and healthy ones.

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