Three Squares Helps the Community

Three Squares diner in Sylvester collected money to purchase eight book bags for Called to Care of Worth County. The mission of Called to Care is to ease the suffering of vulnerable children domestically and abroad by engaging and equipping the body of Christ in our community to minister through adoption, foster care and missions. 

Dollywood Company Welcomes Foster Families

The Dollywood Company welcomes foster families from the following states to spend time together at their parks: Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Indiana, North Carolina, Ohio, South Carolina, West Virginia and Virginia. These ticket requests must be submitted through the representing foster organization, and the number of tickets requested must match the number of children listed on the foster license. Each family is only allowed one request per park per year. For information regarding their Foster Families program please inquire at As the Lutheran Services of Georgia says so well, “Every child deserves a loving and caring family”. If you are interested in becoming a foster parent, please reach out today. Open your heart and your home to a child in need. Become a foster parent today!

First Ever Obstacle Course for New Recruits with the Sylvester Police Department

The Sylvester Police Department started their first-ever obstacle course test for new recruits hoping to join their department reported WALB. Recruits looking to join the police force will now have to go through an intense obstacle course test in 15 seconds.  Patrolman Bryon Todd is testing out the new physical agility test for future recruits.  “Physical fitness is a large part of this field I mean you’re going to be chasing people, jumping fences,” said Todd.  Todd recently joined the force and has already ran after suspects on foot. “When it comes down to getting to an area fast some areas cars can’t reach, you got to be able to get out of your car and run to it,” explained Todd.  Chief Anson Evans adopted the test to mirror what he experienced coming up as a young officer in Dekalb County. “It’s very important that we get the best officers that’s in the best physical shape as possible,” said Evans, to prepare recruits for the rigors of the police academy. In the course, recruits will do a running circle routine, drag a 150-pound dummy, crawl through a tunnel and jump a five-foot fence without touching it. “Being young, being agile, being able to communicate with the public…you got to have physically fit officers,” said Evans.  Starting next May, senior officers will also have to pass the physical fitness test. “It’s hard to recruit in South Georgia, I think that’s a myth, it all depends on how you’re recruiting,” remarked Evans.  “I believe that it’s for the best, he’s doing what he feels is right and I agree with him 100 percent,” said Todd.  On this past Friday morning, 33 recruits experienced the rigorous test. If they pass, then they can go onto to the police academy. If not, then they’ll have to retake the test in six months. 

City Manager Showing Off His Dance Moves

The City Manager for the City of Sylvester, Autron Hayes, stays extremely busy with the day to day operations for the city but he is never too busy to take time out to stop by Summer Camp hosted by The City of Sylvester and Sylvester – Worth County Family Connections. Mr. Hayes stops by the camp at least once a week and on this particular day he stopped by and danced. The children had an absolute blast with Mr. Hayes. I personally enjoyed watching the facebook video. He was having a great time and so were the children. Be sure to check out that video on the Family Connection page. Thank you Mr. Hayes for having fun with the children this Summer.

~ Dates to Remember ~


17th ~ City of Sylvester Council Meeting
18th ~ Books and Bubbles at The Margaret Jones Public Library in Sylvester 10:30am
18th ~ Book signing at The Margaret Jones Public Library with Mart Trim 5pm-7pm
19th ~ Kiwanis Club Meeting in Sylvester
20th ~ Lego Building 10am – 11am
20th ~ Rockets & Robots Family Fun Night at The Albany Mall
22nd ~ Sylvester Downtown Farmer’s Market
24th ~ Canvas Paint Party at The Margaret Jones Public Library
24th ~ Badges for Life Blood Deive
25th ~ Books and Bubbles at The Margaret Jones Public Library in Sylvester 10:30am
26th ~ Kiwanis Club Meeting in Sylvester
26th ~ Open House 9th Grade Only WCHS 4pm-6pm
27th ~ Musically Speaking Family Fun Night at The Albany Mall
27th ~ Lego Building 10am – 11am
27th ~ Open House WCPS, WCES, WCMS 4pm-6pm
27th ~ Open House 10-12 Grade Only WCHS 5pm-7pm
28th ~ American Red Cross Blood Drive at The Margaret Jones Public Library 3pm-7pm
28th ~ 8th Annual Night Out Against Crime
29th ~ Sylvester Downtown Farmer’s Market
29th ~ Fishing Rodeo at The Duck Pond 8am-12noon
31st ~ Worth County Schools Start


2nd ~ Kiwanis Club Meeting in Sylvester
4th ~ Worth County Rams Football
5th ~ Sylvester Downtown Farmer’s Market
5th ~ Drive One 4 Ur Community at Sunbelt Ford
7th ~ City of Sylvester Work Session
9th ~ Kiwanis Club Meeting in Sylvester
11th ~ Angel’s Photography Ribbon Cutting
11th ~ Worth County Rams Football
12th ~ Sylvester Downtown Farmer’s Market
12th ~ Worth County Rams Color Run
16th ~ Kiwanis Club Meeting in Sylvester
19th ~ Sylvester Downtown Farmer’s Market
23rd ~ Kiwanis Club Meeting in Sylvester
26th ~ Sylvester Downtown Farmer’s Market

Do you have an event that needs announced?
Please email your questions or event listings to
and we will get them listed on the calendar.
Thank you for your support to The Martin News.

New Magazine Launched

The Sylvester-Worth County Chamber of Commerce launches a new Community Magazine. The Chamber would like to thank all the advertisers who helped to make the magazine possible. They would also like to thank Peach State Publications who were committed to producing a quality product. I was looking at the publication recently and must say it is one of the best chamber magazines I have seen. The stories are magnificent, the pictures are glamorous and our businesses in Sylvester and Worth County are committed to providing great service and a home town, family atmosphere when you visit. Focusing on our businesses and people in this awesome community is what Karen Rackley with The Sylvester – Worth County Chamber of Commerce is all about along with the many committees that volunteer their time and endless efforts to provide greatness for our area. Thank you to everyone that contributed to this magazine. It is WORTH the Read!

Walking Sticks in the Making

The Men of First Baptist Church of Sylvester have been working very hard and the Wordless Walking Stick Ministry is underway. Pictured is Mr. David Dowdy whom is working on one of the walking sticks. Many men showed up to help make and assemble the walking sticks. The Men’s Ministry also meet every Thursday morning at 9am at 3 Squares if you are every interested in attending. What a blessing it would be.

WorkSource Southwest Georgia Awarded High Demand Career Initiative Sector Partnership Grant

WorkSource Southwest Georgia has been awarded the High Demand Career Initiative (HDCI) Sector Partnership Grant from the Georgia Department of Economic Development – Workforce Division (WFD). The Grant award is for $187,658. Governor Nathan Deal launched the High Demand Career Initiative in 2014 to hear directly from businesses about their training and workforce development needs. The goal of Governor Deal’s HDCI is to develop an infrastructure of communication between the public and private sectors in order to identify the in-demand talent needs of business, and align education and training programs to meet those needs. The regional HDCI approach was designed to support the development of regional sector partnerships that will work to understand and act on the needs of key regional industries. These sector partnerships engage businesses and inform the educational and workforce development efforts at the regional level; both goals that HDCI has championed. These regional sector partnerships will further build an infrastructure of communication and collaboration between the public and private sectors throughout the state. Each WorkSource Area in Georgia could select a sector industry to use in their grant application. WorkSource Southwest Georgia chose the Healthcare Industry for their sector strategy partnership. During listening sessions, healthcare institutions expressed their need of building talent pipelines in training Certified Nurses Assistants (CNA) to Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN) to Registered Nurses (RN). With the same theme of training needs being repeated throughout these institutions, it became obvious that the Healthcare Sector was ideal to build this program around. The planned program will be a 2-year program aimed at addressing the labor training needs, building partnerships within the Healthcare Industry and aligning education and training programs to meet these needs. One of the goals of the program is to be self-sustaining at the end of the 2-year period and to have the communication and collaboration infrastructure established. WorkSource Southwest Georgia operates under the Southwest Georgia Workforce Development Board (WDB) which serves 14 counties in Southwest Georgia including Baker, Calhoun, Colquitt, Decatur, Dougherty, Early, Grady, Lee, Miller, Mitchell, Seminole, Terrell, Thomas, and Worth Counties. WorkSource Southwest Georgia is funded through the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) which provides training services to individuals that have barriers to employment. Individuals interested in the program attend an orientation and are assessed for eligibility and suitability for the program.

Locate South GeorgiaLEADS Recruiting Participants to Create Vision for South Georgia

Locate South Georgia is actively recruiting for participants to join their efforts in developing a strong leadership pipeline across South Georgia.  With Locate South GeorgiaLEADS, presented by Electric Cities of Georgia, recruiting the class for the 2017-2018 program, Locate South Georgia seeks to link business and civic leaders, as well as elected and public officials, to the region’s economic development agenda and efforts. Locate South GeorgiaLEADS (LSGL) is a 21-county regional leadership development program for South Georgia designed in 2015 as a partnership of the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, the J.W. Fanning Institute for Leadership Development at the University of Georgia, and the region’s economic development professionals and affiliates that make up Locate South Georgia. LSGL is particularly timely this year as the Georgia Chamber recently opened its regional office focused on rural Georgia in Tifton this past May and launched its Rural Prosperity Council to focus on the issues and priorities of rural communities around our State.  Additionally, the General Assembly continues the efforts of the Georgia Rural Development Council who are simultaneously evaluating policy and legislative issues that will be taken up during the upcoming legislative session. As the largest regional leadership program in the State, South Georgia is raising the bar for leadership, economic development and civic engagement for existing leaders.  LSGL is an eight-month leadership experience for leaders throughout South Georgia designed to facilitate awareness of issues that are essential to the future success of the region by giving participants the necessary skills and training needed to effectively lead South Georgia in the 21st Century economy. With applications currently available, the program will start in August 2017 and run through March 2018.  This year’s class will join the alumni of LSGL at a kick-off retreat in Sylvester-Worth County on August 17-18.  LSGL links regional site visits and issues awareness to relevant leadership development content within the framework of the Locate South GeorgiaLEADS priorities.  Emphasizing regional priorities throughout the program, each session directly links leadership skills training to issues of critical importance to South Georgia: Regional Identity & Influence: Includes creating a regional brand and identity for South Georgia that is recognized internally as well as externally, enhancing both perception and influence of the region across the State. Workforce Development: Includes the strategic alignment of public and private sectors—business, industry, and educational partners—to address key workforce development needs and challenges; and to increase the economic viability of South Georgia.  Collective Visioning & Planning: Includes developing leaders who understand the changing South Georgia economy and culture; and recognize why it is essential to both think and act within a global context, working collaboratively to ensure the region’s success. The purpose of Locate South GeorgiaLEADS is to develop informed, aware, and educated leaders to promote and grow South Georgia by: Increasing awareness of assets and resources; Creating a shared sense of regional pride and ownership in both action and solutions; Strengthening partnerships and alliances; and Enhancing political influence and acuity to support the needs and opportunities of South Georgia. Tuition is $1,250 per participant, with scholarships available through Electric Cities of Georgia and the One Sumter Economic Development Foundation. For more information about Locate South Georgia, please visit their website at   For more information about Locate South GeorgiaLEADS, please contact Mary Beth Bass, Executive Director, One Sumter Economic Development Foundation, Inc., at 229.815.1669; or at Interested candidates may also contact their local economic development team for further information.

Mark Your Calendar for the Georgia Peanut Tour

September 19-21, 2017

Albany, Ga. and surrounding area
Host hotel: Merry Acres Inn
The 31st annual Georgia Peanut Tour brings the latest information on peanuts while giving a first-hand view of industry infrastructure from production and handling to  processing and utilization. Tour stops will be made in several peanut producing counties including Dougherty, Lee and Sumter County. Attendees can expect to see first-hand nearly every aspect of peanut production in the state. This year’s tour hosts many exciting stops including on-farm harvest demonstrations and clinics, peanut processing facilities, and several special highlights which include research at the University of Georgia Southwest Georgia Research and Education Center, Jimmy Carter’s Boyhood Home, Georgia Seed Development Commission Foundation Seed Facility in Plains, Smithville Peanut Company Buying Point and JLA USA in Albany.  Hotel accommodations can be made at the Merry Acres Inn in Albany, Georgia, by calling 229-435-7721. Rooms are available at the rate of $89.00 plus tax for a standard room. Be sure to ask for the Georgia Peanut Tour room block.