Troops Celebrating Holidays Overseas

Troops Celebrating Holidays Overseas

Arriving in his camouflage sleigh, Kris Kringle came a little early this year to visit our troops overseas.

He landed in Bagram Air Base to spread holiday cheer and deliver Christmas stockings to our men and women in uniform.

Each of the troops had the chance to sit on Santa’s lap and tell him their wish list.

“The greatest privilege we have is being able to serve and we do not get in politics of what might be going on in the environment around us, even back home,ā€ said Major Richard Morton who is stationed in Iraq.

And in Iraq earlier this week, troops got into the holiday spirit by participating in a talent show.

The show was filled with singers, guitarists and a mandolin player.

The event took place in the in the main hospital inside the fortified green zone in Baghdad.

But, no matter where the troops are spending Christmas around the world, their hearts are with their families.

“We all miss our families, and it is the biggest drive that all of us have. We all want to go home and see our families, be with our children, our loved ones,ā€ said Jacob Coopers, a soldier serving in Iraq.

“I know my family misses me and I miss my family, but I am doing this for my country, so Iā€™m doing my duty,ā€ said Aaris Morris, a solider in Afghanistan.

South Augusta Pleads for Share of Economic Development

South Augusta Pleads for Share of Economic Development

Construction workers are finishing up a multi-million dollar development known as the Village at Goshen in South Augusta. It’s an investment some developers may once have viewed as a risk in that part of town.

“Fifteen years or so ago, the Regency Mall closed down and when that happened it caused the environment of ‘we can’t do any more development in this area,'” said Helen Blocker-Adams former mayoral candidate.

Bob Garrett remembers those days. He oversees the Alleluia Community and School in South Augusta.

“It seemed like people didn’t care about what happened down here. It might have been the ethnic mix, economic mix, who knows?”

But he says developments like the Village at Goshen proves things are changing. An answer to their prayers.

“God has a plan for this part of town. A lot of it has to do with redeveloping residential areas. But he also has a big plan for the commercial side of things,” said Garrett.

In 2005, more than half of the multi-million dollar developments were in South Augusta, but most were industry jobs.

While that’s good, business woman and former mayoral candidate Helen Blocker Adams says residential growth, high end retail, and restaurants are lacking. Last year, most of the multi-million dollar retail investments were in West Augusta.

“We wanna let developers know there’s lots of opportunities in South Augusta as well,” said Blocker-Adams.

Another reason to develop in South Augusta is land availability. Every other part of Augusta is running low. But in South Augusta 48,000 acres are ripe for development. In fact, 77 percent of open land in Richmond County is in South Augusta.

Police Thought Seized Video Gambling Machines Were Legal

Video Gambling Machines

(AP) – The State Law Enforcement Division says four people have been arrested after 19 illegal gaming machines were found in businesses in Port Royal and Beaufort.

Port Royal Police Chief James Cadien says he knew a shop in town had video gambling machines for years, but didn’t realize the business might be breaking the law until state investigators visited the store last week.

Payouts for video gambling machines that are based on skill, not chance, have been banned in South Carolina since 2000.

SLED Inspector Stacy Drakeford says owners can easily change a
legal machine into an illegal video gambling machine.