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Aiken Standard (Newspaper) - August 29, 2011, Aiken, South Carolina í I, MONDAY, AUGUST 29, 2011 VOL. 145, NO. 241 150 teams compete in Aiken Soccer úm fínals BY HALEY HUGHES hhughes@aikenstand^rd.com GA-SC Bulls Soccer Club Vice President Dean Van Pelt qualified this year's Aiken Soccer Cup a success. One hundred fifty teams irom the Southeast competed Saturday and Sunday in hopes of leaving the fields as the champions in their age IN THE NEWS STAFF PHOTO BY ROB NOVIT Athletes from USCA women's hoops team teach children • Members of the USC Aiken women's basketball squad conduct a clinic for more than 40 children at an event sponsored by Christ Central Ministries. SEE LOCAL NEWS, 3A TODAY'S FORECAST î'i SEE WEATHER. 6C LOCAL POLL Should Sam's Club come to Aiken? YES: 74.30% NO: 14.79% I DON'T CARE: «10 92% *Taken from an online poll as of 8 p.m. Sunday. Visit www.aikenstandard.com to vote in today's poll. AREA DEATHS Fannie Etheredge, Aiken Mary Settles, Trenton Sister IMary Ciement Fine, Charleston , Boyd W. lyier, Aiken SEE DEATHS AND FUNERALS. 6A INSIDE Calendar....................5C Movie Listings..;........5C Classifieds.................SB Obituaries..................6A Crossword................4C Opinions.................13A Comtes......................3C Sports........................IB Horoscopes... ■.„.......4C TV Listings.?.............2C UvlngOnThelSo......1C Weaftier.....................60 Area team of " wineveni undefeated® IB brackets. About 25 teams were named girs win event after the two-day toumament having played multiple games under sunny skies. "It went very well," Van Pelt said. "We were blessed with the weather. We got a break from Hurricane Irene. We were real worried at the start of thé week." He heard from many parents, players and spectators this year how pleased they were with the condition of the playing fields and pleased with Aiken itself "I think we did impress a lot of people this weekend," he said. "I want to thank them for coming out." Wreck results in power outage at Whiskey Road intersection PHOTO COURTESY OF AIKEN DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY Pictured is a Cadillac Escalade that was hit by a Ford Focus that executed an illegal U-turn, resulting in the Escalade knocking over a utility pole that landed on the roof of the vehicle. BY HALEY HUGHES hhughes@ail<enstandard. com A two-vehicle accident on Whiskey Road on Sunday downed a utility pole and knocked power out to the traffic signals at the intersection of Whiskey and Athol Avenue. Around 2:30 p.m. Sunday, the driver of a Ford Escort was traveling south on Whiskey Road when the driver executed an illegal U-tum, according to Aiken Department of Public Safety Officer Benjamin Clark. The Escort struck a Cadillac Escalade traveling on Whiskey and pushed it into a utility pole by Lowe's Home Improvement, said. Clark. The utility pole was knocked over and landed on the roof of the Escalade. Clark said there were no severe injuries, but the driver of the Escort was transported to a hospital as a safety precaution. | Traffic was diverted on Whiskey Road for ! roughly an hour while crews cleared the scene, i The traffic signal directing traffic from | Athol Avenue (between Red Lobster and Bank of America) to Whiskey Road was out as a result of the accident. Officials had to shut down the traffic signals directing northbound and southbound traffic on Whiskey Road as well as the signals directing traffic from Lowe's in order to repair the damage. As of 7 p.m. Sunday, public safety and S.C. Department of Transportation officials were still working to erect the utility pole and string new traffic signals. Public Safety spokesperson Sgt. Jake Mahoney said the driver of the. Escort was found at fault at the collision scene for failure to yield right of way. The Aiken Soccer Cup was established in 1995 and began with only 35 teams. As evidenced this weekend at the heavily populated polo fields, the toumament has grown to noteworthy proportions. Organizers estimated that about 10,000 people were in Aiken this weekend for the toumament alone. SEE SOCCER, 5A Admin group to hear on process of reassessment BY HALEY HUGHES hhughes@aikenstandard com A special meeting of Aiken County's Administrative Committee has been called Tuesdav following the open house on property tax reassessment. The Administrative Committee will meet at 6:30 p.m. at the Aiken Electric Cooperative to hear Assessor Rick Jantzen speak about the process of reassessment. Members of the public will be allowed to address the committee after Jantzen's presentation. An Administrative Committee meeting earlier this month drew several hundred people to County Council chambers. They packed into the room to observe a discussion on reassessment between Jantzen and the committee, forcing chairman Scott Singer to advise those that spilled out the door to wait one hour for a secorei meeting so they could fit in council chambers and avoid a fire hazard. Officials did not anticipate having that many people attend, and Singer pledged to schedule another venue in which questions could be answered. The reassessment open house is scheduled from 1 to 5:30 p.m. At least six Aiken County appraisers will be available at Aiken Electric Co-op on Wagener Road to talk with people and answer general questions concerning reassessment, a process that has bewildered many taxpayers in the area. People are invited to attend at their leisure. The appraisers will not have access to specific property files at the Co-op, according to Jantzen, but will do their best to answer questions from the public on the process of reassessment, what documents can assist in an appeal and may be able to offer minor assistance in filling out the appeal form. County representatives are also looking at holding anotfier open house in North Augusta on Sept. 8. The time has not yet been set. SEE MEETING, 5A 68-year-old continues to run after 35K miles BY KAREN DAILY kdaily@aikenstandard com For the past three decades, nearly every time Leighton McLendon laced up his rubber-soled New Balance sneakers and hit the sand, soil or pavement, he has penciled in the number of miles he has logged. In early July, the 68-year-old ticked off mile No. 35,000 - a tally he has kept since 1977 when he started training for his first marathon on the Isle of Palms. Admittedly, many of the 35,000 miles were completed decades ago when he was running more races. "Yeah, that is a little front loaded," he joked. But McLendon has continued to run, long after others his age and even youliger have called it quits. No matter the personal issues he has faced, the weather or the terrain ahead of him, McLendon has laced up his sneakers and headed outdoors with frequency. He has run with groups and alone. He has tackled the heat and the cold, and through the ups and downs of life, McLen-do^i has kept running. Aétually, McLendon said, mrtning has been therapeutic during some of those though "I worked out inany things in my head while running. Many times I started a run and didn't feel that good, then I got a clear view of what I wanted to do." Leighton McLendon 68-year-old runner times. "I worked out many things in my head while running," he reflected. "Many times I started a run and didn't feel that good, then I got a clear view of what I wanted to do." The only thing that keeps McLendon from hitting the pavement when he is in the mood for a head-clearing run is lightning. McLendon began running in the heyday of the sport, when author and runner Jim Fixx popularized jogging. At that time, community races began to spring up in towns across the nation, and organized running groups formed. He with inends Ken Akin and Ken Cole started the Aiken Track Club, now the Aiken SUBMITTED PHOTO MAN ON THE RUN: Leighton McLendon logged 35,000 miles after three decades of jogging and still continues to run frequently. Running Club, and on April 19, 1979, McLendon became the first club president. A legacy McLendon, Akin, Cole and many of those early runners can boast is an idea that surfaced while they were train- ing for a race in Savannah. They envisioned a community path at Virginia Acres where runners and walkers could escape outdoors for a little exercise without fear of traffic. The runners approached Aiken City Council and then-Mayor H. Odell Weeks with the idea for the track, and plans were quickly approved. The original plan called for a short track to run around the soccer fields at Virginia Acres, but McLendon said a quarter mile high-school length track wasn't nearly long enough. He pushed to lengthen the plans for the track to wind a mile aroimd the park. After working through a few hiccups, the mile track was paved at a cost of $7,000 to $9,000. About three decades later, the track is still one of the most heavily used recreational areas in the city. The track does McLendon's heart good in more ways than just the obvious benefit to his cardiovascular system. He said he is thrilled to see senior citizens walking along the path, young mothers with their children in strollers and all walks of life in between using the track. SEE RUNNER, 5A
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