Newspaper Archive of
The Monroe County Reporter
Forsyth, Georgia
August 8, 2018     The Monroe County Reporter
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August 8, 2018

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Page 2D August 8, 2018 R orter learn t life is reall fat By Diane Glldewell news@mymcr.nef Not far dowmown Bolingbroke, which is not far from suburban Macon, there are a few acres of rural country life known as Blanche Farms. The Blanche family, including mom, dad, three teens and one almost- teen, work together to create a pastoral home for a variety of farm animals as well as themselves. And they invite others to step away from city (or town) life and enjoy it with them. Margaret (Peggy) Blanche has experience, skills and rapport with horses that she is eager to share with others, especially children, by teaching them how to ride with comfort and ease. She has hand picked her four horses and two ponies so that she knows how they will respond to different riders, and she feels confi- dent they will help young riders enjoy their time on horseback and increase the athletic and mental skills they use in riding. "My lessons are a self-es- teem builder, a benchmark to excel in other things;' said Peggy. "Team sports are not for everyone. Rid- ing gives them a sense of accomplishment that keeps them coming back. Riding has been grounding for me throughout life; it's why I do what I do." She said that Blanche Farms is a positive place for horses as well as riders, which is important because the horse and rider are a symbiotic team. Riders leam how to train their horses to do what they want them to do. "I only have happy horses" she said. 'grad I have enthusiasm for every rider. There's nothing else like it" As 14-year-old Madison Jiles practiced posting in the ring behind the Blanche Farms barn, Peggy said that she is proud of how much Madison's comfort on the horse has increased, even though it is only her third lesson. Her grandparents, who sit on the porch behind the bam with a view of the peaceful green pastures beyond while they watch Madison ride in the ring, agree that they see a dif- ference in her confidence. They say that she likes to ride with a friend who has horses but has not felt com- fortable keeping up with her friend. "I was scared at first; I fell offone time:' said Madison. "Now I feel better. I'm get- ting it down." After her ride Madison helps take the saddle and bridle offand then bathe and brush her mount, giv- ing her a chance to increase her connection with the horse as well as to increase her knowledge and skills in dealing with the large animals. Two rather small girls, five-year-old twins, Isabel and Olivia, showed that they have no problem managing the equines many times their size. They direct them with their legs and/ or voice so that the reins are optional. Olivia takes a turn riding bareback on one of the ponies with her hands in the air. Their grand- mother, Dianne McQuarrie, said that she and the twins' mother, Kelly Wood, all take lessons at Blanche Farms. "I think it's great as a family thing:' said Dianne. "We ride safe and we ride in charge of the horse, and being out at the farm is magical" Peggy said that she wants her students to be able to ride with any seat, for show TO THE QUALIFIED VOTERS OF MONROE'COUNTY, GEORGIA The Monroe County Election Superintendent hereby calls a special election to be held on the 6ill day of November, 2018 at the regular polling places and all of the election districts of Monroe County, Georgia at which tittle there will be submitted to the qualified voters of Monroe County, Georgia for their determination the question of whether Monroe County, Georgia shall be authorized to permit and regulate its Sunday sales of distilled spirits or alcoholic beverages for beverage purposes by the drink from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 midnight. The ballots to be used at such referendum shall have written or printed thereon substantially the fol!owing. (Y) Shall the governing authority of Monroe County, Georgia be authorized to permit and regulate Sunday sales of distilled spirits or alcoholic beverages for (N) beverage purposes by the drink from I1:00 a.m. to 12:00midnight? The several places for holding said referendum shall be at the regular and established voting precincts of the election districts of Monroe County, Georgia and the polls will be open from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. on a day fixed for this Referendum. All polling places will be opened. All persons who are not registered to vote and who desire to register to vote in this referendum may register to vote through the close of business on the 9th day of October. ~rly voting will be held between the 15th day of October, 2018 and dose at 4:30 p.m. on the 2~ day of November, 2018. Those residents of Monroe County, Georgia qualified to vote in such a referendum shall be determined in all respects in accordance with the election laws 0fthe State 0fGe0rgia. This Notice is given pursuant to Resolution of Monroe County, Georgia adopted on luly 10, 2018. (Y) Shall the governing authority of Monroe County, Georgia be authorized to permit and mgulm Sunday sales of distilled spirits or alcoholic beverages for (N) beverage purposes by the drink from 11:00 a.m. tor 12:00 midnight? Sisters Isabel and Olivia, 5, pose with the Blanche Farms goat herd after their riding lessons. (Photos/Diane Glidewell) Madison Jiles works with Major at her Blanche Farms summer morning riding lesson. or for trail rides, English or Western. She said that a rider who has a strong seat, who is not trying to balance, means a happy horse. "It's all just balance, feel- ing confident whatever she does;' she said. "If the rider is relaxed, the horse is relaxed. And if she can do this on this big animal, what can't she do in life? I see them blossom. The horse watches body language and listens to the voice" Blanche Farms is more than riding lessons. Along with the four homes and two ponies that call the Bolingbroke farm home, there are also six goats, three rabbits, a mini-donkey, three sheep, eight chickens, two dogs, one cat, Peggy's husband Bernie, and their four children. Bernie and Peggy have created the life- style that they want for their family and they want to share their bucolic, whole- some lifestyle with others. The family moved from the Tennessee mountains to Monroe County five years ago. They were happy with their mountain farm and community but were not happy with the educational opportunities available as their oldest son, Joshua, now 16, entered middle school. Bernie accepted a position with a Company with which he had a previ- ous association, and the family found the 1920's Notice is hereby given that, in accordance with O.C.G.A. 21-2-540, a special election shall be held in Monroe County to fill the vacancy in the office of Sheriff of Monroe Count,/, caused by the resignation of the Honorable John Can/Bittick. The special election will be held on November 6, 2018. Qualifying for the special election shall be held at the Monroe County Administration Building, in the Board of Elections and Registration office, beginning at 8:30 am on August 06, 2018 and ending at 12:00 noon on August 10, 2018. The qualifying fee shall be $1779.86 All persons who are not registered to vote and who desire to register to vote in the Special Election may register to vote through the close of business on October 09, 2018. Early voting will be held October 1S, 2018 through November 2, 2018 from the hours of 8:30 a.rn. until 4:30 p.m. A mandatory Saturday voting will be held on October 27, 2018 from the hours of 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. in the Monroe County Board of Elections and Registration office at 38 W. Main Street, Forsyth, Georgia. Polls will be open on Election Day from 7:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m. Should a runoff election be required, such runoff will be held on December 4, 2018. This the 18th day of June 2018. Kaye S. Warren Election Supervisor Monroe County, Georgia. Maya Blanche shows the fun of farm life. house and barn that they have re-modeled into the idyllic Blanche Farms. Bernie said the house was once the homestead for a cattle farm that induded much of the surrounding community. Almost- 12-year-old Maya is completely on board with sharing Blanche Farms with others. She not only steps up to help with the lessons and caring for and training the animals, she was the one who came up with the idea of offering farm visits. Blanche Farms offers farm visits for families and for school, daycare, church and similar groups. "It exposes children who don't get out [on farms]" said Bernie. "It lets them connect with another living thing and interact. You can't text a goat" Maya loves introducing children to her animals. "Her brothers are her mus- cle," said her mother of Joel, 13, Jacob, 14, and Joshua, 16. Together the family has worked to re-do the barn, build the rabbit cage, and maintain the stables and animals, among other chores. One brother has a green thumb for gardening and another has an interest in cooking, talents that the family looks to incorporate in future plans for Blanche Farms. "Family is most impor- tant" said Bernie, referring both to his own family and to the opportunities Blanche Farms wants to provide other families. One planned activity is "Suburban Saddle Up" in which a family spends a day at the farm competing with one another in events. In the future at Blanche Farms are seasonal activi- ties like hayrides, blueberry picking and pumpkin days. Peggy would like to have some special programs for children with medical chal- lenges, a day when they can get away from the over- whelming reality of being sick. Adults with illnesses could also benefit from such a program. Blanche Farms is open for riding lessons and farm tours Monday through Saturday, by appointment only. Visit the website at for more information. The Leon Geodrum Foundation Beginning September 15, 2018 & continuing through April 20, 2019. Every first & third Saturday from 9 a.m. until 12 noon. Hardin Library Building, Tift College Students from 1st -12th grade. Contact Mr. Rodney Stewart, 478-954-8609 I }