Sims named AISD assistant superintendent; McCowan new AMS principal

Winston McCowan
Winston McCowan

Two Athens ISD administrators were promoted Friday, Feb. 22.

Dr. Janie Sims was named the Assistant Superintendent, according to Superintendent Blake Stiles.

Sims had been serving the district as the Curriculum Director since 2011. Prior to 2011, she served the district in other administrative capacities including as principal of Athens Intermediate and principal of South Athens Elementary.

Also moving up is Winston McCowan, who was named the principal of the Middle School. McCowan has served the district since 2011 as an Athens High School assistant principal, and recently as the interim principal at Athens Middle School.

“I am confident that both of these individuals will positively impact the district and the community,” Stiles said. “I would like to offer my thanks, again, to all who served on the selection committees. The considerate responses of all of the members of the interview process were tremendously helpful to me in making these significant decisions.”

Athens girls powerlifters headed to Regionals

The Athens High School girls varsity powerlifters competed at the Fairfield Invitational meet Thursday night, finishing 6th.

Individually the girls finished as follows:

CeCe Monmouth finished 2nd with a total lift of 790 pounds. This placing and lift total sealed her a competing position at the Regional meet. She is currently ranked 8th in the region.

Wendi Pacheco finished 3rd with a total lift of 535 pounds. She also earned a position at the Regional meet in the 114-pound weight class. She is currently 8th in the region.

Ingrid Castaneda finished 3rd with a total lift of 520 pounds. She will be competing at the Regional meet. She is ranked 9th in the region right now.

Melissa Rodriguez will go to the regional meet as an alternate. She is ranked 11th.

The regional meet is at Wills Point Friday, March 1.

DAR hears about American Flag

Marsha Head (left), Claire Grant (seated at table), Billy Burford and Perry Holcomb at the recent DAR meeting. (COURTESY PHOTO)
Marsha Head (left), Claire Grant (seated at table), Billy Burford and Perry Holcomb at the recent DAR meeting. (COURTESY PHOTO)

By Fred Head, Special to HCT Now

Americans love their flag! Texans love their flag! The members of the Daniel McMahon Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution love their flag!

At their Feb. 20 George Washington Tea, held at the Fellowship Hall of the First Presbyterian Church of Athens, members and guests showed their love for Old Glory as they enjoyed a program concerning the American Flag by DAR member Marsha Head.

In her presentation, Head discussed the flag and explained the meaning of the folding of the American Flag at military funerals. She was assisted with a folding demonstration by two local veterans, each with many years of military service, Billy Burford, career Air Force retired and Perry Holcomb, career Navy retired, as they slowly proceeded through the 13 separate folds while Head explained each of these folds to the large crowd in attendance.

In closing her presentation, Head said, “In the future, you’ll see flags folded and now you will know why. Please share this with our children and all those you love as we strive to keep our country strong and free.”

Outstanding area students were honored for their essays and their good citizen behavior by DAR member Claire Grant as she presented certificates and monetary awards to each of the winners.

Old Fiddlers’ Reunion moves to Saturday

Mia Orosco was last year's winner of the Old Fiddlers' Reunion. This year's event will be held on Saturday. (MICHAEL V. HANNIGAN PHOTO)
Mia Orosco was last year’s winner of the Old Fiddlers’ Reunion. This year’s event will be held on Saturday. (MICHAEL V. HANNIGAN PHOTO)

The 82nd Annual Old Fiddlers’ Reunion is going to be a little bit different this year … it’s going to be on Saturday!

The news was announced in a press release yesterday.

The 2013 Fiddlers will be held Saturday, June 1, with the traditional jam session the night before.

“The Athens Old Fiddlers Reunion has moved to Saturday to allow for more student contestants and people who can’t get off work on Friday to be able to attend the event,” said Mary Ensign, coordinator for the Athens Old Fiddler’s Association, in the press release.

Make sure to adjust your calendar. You don’t want to miss Fiddlers.

 

Lunker catfish caught at Texas Freshwater Fishery Center

Jonathan Gonzalez of Kaufman shows off his 18.6-pound channel catfish caught on a fly rod at the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center in Athens February 14. The fish has been submitted for a number of lake and state records. (PHOTO COURTESY JANICE ARNSDORFF/TPWD)
Jonathan Gonzalez of Kaufman shows off his 18.6-pound channel catfish caught on a fly rod at the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center in Athens February 14. The fish has been submitted for a number of lake and state records. (PHOTO COURTESY JANICE ARNSDORFF/TPWD)

Press release from Texas Parks and Wildlife

ATHENS—The Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center’s main stocked fishing pond, Lake Zebco, covers only about an acre and a half. (A full football field including end zones covers 1.32 acres.) Walking at a brisk pace, you can circle it in three or four minutes.

The lake’s small size does not give a hint of what monsters lurk beneath its surface. On the morning of Valentine’s Day, Jonathan (“Gonzo”) Gonzalez of Kaufman caught a channel catfish measuring 35.25 inches long and 23 inches in girth and weighing 18.6 pounds.

Gonzalez, a frequent visitor to TFFC, is a dedicated fly-fisher who frequently fishes for rainbow trout in TFFC’s ponds. As usual, on this occasion he was targeting rainbows using a five-weight rod and a semi-seal lure in peacock green.

Gonzalez is a prolific fly-tier who demonstrates his skills at the annual Fly Fish Texas event at TFFC, scheduled this year for March 9. “A semi-seal fly is named that because it looks like seal fur,” he said. “It’s bushy.” Gonzalez first saw the fly in Arizona, where it is used for trout, and now ties the pattern himself.

“I had seen trout rising on the upper end of the pond near where the waterfall comes in,” Gonzalez revealed. “I cast just past the trout, and the catfish hit the fly as soon as it hit the water. I suspect he may have been looking for rainbow trout to eat.”

The catfish is his biggest catch on a fly rod, eclipsing the 10.5-pound bass that was his previous best. How big was it? Well for starters, it is a pending state fly-rod record for channel catfish as well as a pending state catch-and-release record. And not surprisingly, it will rank as the Lake Zebco fly rod and catch-and-release records. It will also garner Gonzalez a Big Fish Award from Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.

“I was pretty lucky,” Gonzalez said. “I fish at TFFC a lot, and this was just icing on the cake.”

On the Net:

For information on how you can submit your catch for a Texas record, visit here.