Highland County Commissioners discuss Smokin’ in the Hills; 2018 planning underway


Highland County Commissioner Shane Wilkin on Wednesday highlighted the success of the recent Smokin’ in the Hills barbecue competition at Rocky Fork Lake, saying “All we’re hearing is talk of teams coming back next year.”

Wilkin told those in attendance at a commissioners meeting that a debrief meeting will be held next week for organizers to exchange ideas about next year’s competition, which he expects to be bigger and better than last weekend’s event.

Wilkin lauded local barbecue teams Cloud 9, Dubtown Smokers, Bibs & Ribs and High on the Hog for their success at the competition, and acknowledged volunteers and sponsors for their help in making the event run smoothly.

Wilkin reported that the Highland County Senior Center sold 40 pork butts’ worth of pulled pork at its booth, and the Patriot Challenge – a combination canoe race and obstacle challenge – resulted in only one canoe capsizing. Wilkin attributed the upset to a navigational disagreement between the canoe’s crew.

Wilkin thanked commissioners Jeff Duncan and Terry Britton for fencing off the area for the Hillsboro Rotary Club’s beer garden, which was enjoyed by many at the event, and again credited the senior center’s Rhonda Purdin for having the idea for the event, and Highland County Visitors Bureau Director Destiny Bryson for spearheading planning efforts.

Duncan and Britton acknowledged Wilkin for having a substantial role in the planning process as well.

Wilkin said the tentative dates for next year’s Smokin’ in the Hills event are Sept. 21-22, 2018.

Also Wednesday, medical staff from the Highland County Health Department visited the meeting to accept a proclamation declaring the month of October Influenza Vaccination Awareness Month.

The health department’s Katie Lewis said flu shots are now available for anyone aged six months or older. Lewis said the best time to get a flu shot is near the beginning or middle of October.

Flu shots are available at the health department for $25 or through insurance coverage. For more information, call the health department at 937-393-1941.

In another matter, Kathy Bruynis, director of the Highland County OSU Extension Office, said there will no longer be a shared agriculture and natural resources extension educator between Highland, Brown and and Adams County. Bruynis said the OSU Extension will now fund a separate educator for each county.

Wilkin said commissioners in Adams and Brown County had already approved the change in their counties. The board voted in favor.

In other business, commissioners clerk Nicole Oberrecht said the City of Hillsboro was recently awarded $300,000 in Community Development Block Grant funding for a drainage project on East Main Street. Wilkin said the project will begin next summer.

The commissioners also passed routine financial resolutions and entered executive session to discuss economic development. The board took no action afterward.

Reach David Wright at 937-402-2570, or on Twitter @DavidWrighter.

Highland County Commissioners Jeff Duncan, left, and Shane Wilkin, right, sit in session during a Wednesday commissioners meeting.
http://www.timesgazette.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/33/2017/09/web1_commish092717.jpgHighland County Commissioners Jeff Duncan, left, and Shane Wilkin, right, sit in session during a Wednesday commissioners meeting. David Wright | The Times-Gazette
Flu shots now available through health department

By David Wright


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