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Patriotic Pulse 7-5-15
Humane Society president Dawn Briley King is shown at the organizations new thrift shop on Old Smithville Highway called Puppy Love Trash and Treasure. Hours are Thursday thru Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

If TV Land really wants to do something useful, the network would not ban “The Dukes of Hazzard.” It would ban reruns of the ridiculous show known as “Walker, Texas Ranger,” starring everyone’s favorite karate fighter Chuck Norris.
Speaking of “Walker, Texas Ranger,” no mention of that show is complete without at least a few of those famous Chuck Norris one-liners. I have an obligation:
• The Boogeyman checks the closet at night for Chuck Norris.
• Chuck Norris was the reason the wheel was invented. People needed a faster way to get away from Chuck Norris.
• Chuck Norris does not sleep. He waits.
• The quickest way to a man’s heart is with Chuck Norris’ fist.
• Chuck Norris can do a roundhouse kick … with his arms.
• If you spell Chuck Norris in Scrabble, you win forever.
• What’s known as UFC, or Ultimate Fighting Championship, doesn’t use its full name, which is Ultimate Fighting Championship, Non Chuck Norris Division.
OK, enough of that. I was fine with all this Confederate flag talk until it got up close and personal. TV Land confirmed Wednesday it pulled “The Dukes of Hazzard” in the aftermath of the Charleston, S.C., shooting because of the Confederate flag painted atop the General Lee.
Said John Schneider, best known as Bo Duke, “Come on, TV Land. Can’t we all just watch TV?”
On top of that, Warner Bros. said it would no longer license models of the General Lee unless the licensees stripped the Confederate flag from the car’s roof. If this keeps up, the next thing you know police are going to outlaw jumping ponds or half-finished bridges with your car.
We here at the Standard are upset by TV Land’s decision. We toyed with ways to protest and I’m pleased to report we’ve decided against burning furniture and rioting on College Street.
Instead, we’ve declared this Thursday to be “Dukes of Hazzard” day here at the office. We’re going to show our support by wearing our “Dukes of Hazzard” apparel. If I understand this correctly, Margaret Hobbs and Pat Zechman are even going to wear their Daisy Duke shorts and there's talk of some type of contest. This should be exciting!

Capella still owns River Park

I’ve had several people ask me if River Park Hospital has been sold and if Saint Thomas is now the sole owner. It’s not, according to Beth Wright of Capella Healthcare. She told me Capella and Saint Thomas continue to own River Park jointly.
“Saint Thomas Health remains co-owner of Capella’s four hospitals in the Upper Cumberland region,” said Wright. “We’re always looking for ways to better serve our communities, including how our relationship with our partner Saint Thomas Health can continue to evolve. Because of the challenges of healthcare reform, most forward-thinking organizations are exploring ways they can continue to improve health care – from quality, to access, to cost. If any of our discussions result in something new, we will share the details at that time.”
While news of River Park selling to Saint Thomas may seem big, I’m not sure such a deal would amount to much in terms of the quality of healthcare available here in McMinnville because Saint Thomas is already co-owner of our hospital.
If you recall, Capella and Saint Thomas signed a letter of intent to form a partnership back in December 2011 for joint ownership and operation of Capella’s four Middle Tennessee hospitals. In addition to McMinnville, the deal involved the hospitals in Woodbury, Smithville and Sparta.
The deal went into effect May 1, 2012 and there was a grand ceremony in the River Park lobby, complete with cake. Officials with both companies touted the partnership as a way to bolster healthcare in rural communities with added services in fields such as heart care.
We’ll have to wait and see if there’s another River Park announcement in the future.

Hardee’s may get new building

It was about a month ago when I told you our Hardee’s was in line to become a Hardee’s Red Burrito. What this means is some Mexican food items will be added to the Hardee’s menu to complement its traditional favorites.
While this is pretty fabulous news in the land of biscuits and gravy, there’s more. Hardee’s is exploring ways to reconfigure its property to ease drive-thru lane congestion on W. Main Street. As many of us realize, traffic can be an Excedrin-sized headache when the Hardee’s breakfast rush is at its peak. I’ll seek residuals from Excedrin later.
Among the options under consideration is completely leveling the Hardee’s building and starting from scratch. From what I’ve heard from folks close to these discussions, Hardee’s is conducting some engineering studies to determine ways to situate the restaurant on the property to best utilize the space to give drive-thru traffic more room. This certainly seems like a wise thing to do from my perch.
I’m not sure what the best answer would be. Maybe you could put the drive-thru on the other side and have vehicles form a line completely around the building. But I’m not sure if that would inhibit cars parked in the parking lot from backing out. It might result in people getting blocked in.
I could take some measurements and put paper and pencil to it, but then I’d be doing the job of some engineer and we wouldn’t want that. From what I’m hearing, demolition and new construction could be done in about 60 days, which would be 60 long days for Hardee’s regulars who love the food.
I should also say this is not a done deal. Also under consideration are ways to redo the drive-thru lanes while keeping the existing building. This is not nearly as exciting, but it’s probably much more cost-effective. I’ll keep a lookout at City Hall to see what kind of building plans are submitted and convey that information as it becomes available.

New thrift store has bite

There’s great news for animal lovers of the community. If you want to support the care of pets and get thrift store bargains in the process, the Humane Society of Warren County has opened Puppy Love Trash and Treasure. The thrift store is open Thursday thru Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the old Hutchins Auto on Old Smithville Highway.
The thrift store is the idea of the new Humane Society board of directors, which was put in place in January. Dawn Briley King is the president with Andrea Hillis as vice president.
Like most thrift stores, there’s a wide assortment of merchandise and it will constantly change depending on donations. When I stopped by Wednesday, the inventory included books, jewelry, furniture, backpacks, clothing, toys, handmade blankets, and a variety of dog supplies.
Dawn said money raised from the store will go toward the upkeep of dogs. She said everyone with the Humane Society works on a volunteer basis. They are currently housing 40 dogs.
“It makes it tough because we don’t have a facility,” said Dawn. “I have 19 foster dogs at my house right now. We always need more foster homes if anyone would like to help.”
The Humane Society hasn’t had a local facility since the one closed near the fairgrounds. That’s been more than a decade ago. So Humane Society members pitch in and keep dogs at their homes while they try to get them adopted.
“We require an application and a home visit,” said Dawn. “We don’t want them to be put back in a yard in a corner. We want to make sure each dog is right for each family. We have sleepovers and let people keep a dog for a week if they want to. Some dogs don’t get along with other dogs and some are more active than people want. There’s a family out there for every dog. It’s finding the right fit.”
I’m encouraged by the Humane Society’s new direction and hope the thrift store can provide much-needed funding. The organization is also working with Meals on Wheels to provide food for the pets of people who utilize that service.
“For some people, their pet is all they have and they need to feed them too,” said Dawn.
If you’d like to check out the store, there’s currently a contest to get people in the door. A container is filled with doggie treats and the person who comes closest to the number of treats in the container wins a $50 Walmart gift card.
Thrift store donations can be dropped off during regular business hours. Donations can also be picked up at your home if needed by calling 743-8096.

Outreach in a cave

There always seems to be intriguing things taking place at Cumberland Caverns, especially since Bluegrass Underground has flourished into a nationwide attraction.
In the category of trying something new, Cumberland Caverns is holding a faith-based event Aug. 8-9 called Young Christians Weekend. I mention this now because space is limited and church groups from around the community might want to make plans to attend.
The event will feature guest speaker Jeff Yalden and Nashville singer Coffey Anderson, who will each have two-hour shows on Aug. 8. Guest who choose to stay overnight will be treated to another Anderson set during worship services Sunday morning.
If this sounds like something that may be of interest to your church youth group, there are two types of tickets. If you want to attend one day, the cost is $35. If you want to be there both days and stay overnight, the cost is $45.
Tickets are available online at or by calling the cave office at 668-4396.
“We wanted to do an event that reaches out to our children of the community,” said Robby Black, general manager of Cumberland Caverns. “We want our youth to know that despite the many challenges they face today, there is always help available and we want them to know where to find it.”
This sounds like a winner and I appreciate the folks at Cumberland Caverns for putting together such an event.

What’s with that drug sign?

The sign on the corner of Main and Chancery streets is certainly a bizarre way of advertising. It says “Suboxone (931) 259-4466.”
For anyone vaguely familiar with prescription drugs, the sign wouldn’t be much different if it said, “Hydros (931) 259-4466.” It got me thinking what’s the deal? How can a company advertise powerful painkillers like it was a yard sale.
Out of curiosity I called the number and found out it’s for AMC of McMinnville, a company that’s been in business on that corner since January. I was told the company specializes in treatments for people dealing with addiction and Suboxone is given only after a doctor’s visit.
Despite the sign making it seem like Suboxone was being handed out like Halloween candy, no prescription medication is guaranteed, I was told. In case you’re wondering, Suboxone is a drug used to help people addicted to opioids such as heroin and oxycodone. It can also be used to treat pain.
The sign is effective because it got me to call the phone number. However, I was calling more out of alarm.

That’s all folks

May your extended Fourth of July weekend be filled with frolicking in the mist of firework smoke. For business tips, call 473-2191.