THUMBS UP: To Valdosta Middle School Drama for hosting the Southern Middle School Regional One-Act Competition today at Valdosta High School Performing Arts Center. By offering to host the competition last year, VMS Drama teacher Toni Jarvis was able to start a regional competition for South Georgia middle school theatre groups. VMS is one of the few middle schools in the region to offer theatre classes and productions. Win or lose today, VMS drama will also host the state competition in November. Break a leg!

THUMBS DOWN: To Georgia Power’s plan to raise electric bills. The economy remains soured. The state unemployment rate hovers at 10 percent. Many folks already have a hard time making ends meet. Georgia Power’s proposal would add about $11 monthly to the average bill starting next year, but that will be $11 many people can ill afford.

THUMBS UP: To the 820th Security Force and its being renamed the 820th Base Defense Group at Moody Air Force Base during a ceremony earlier this week. Though the name changed, the group’s unique mission remains the same: Integrated base defense in high-threat areas.

THUMBS DOWN: To reports of people purchasing blocks of Winnersville tickets then attempting to sell them at much-inflated prices. The Winnersville Classic has widespread interest and a long history in the Valdosta-Lowndes County community. It is a game for the entire community, not a contest for a few people attempting to make a profit.

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