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Katie Ward

Stories by Katie

Finding Hope Fellowship Church launches in downtown Chickamauga

Todd Kyle has not had an easy life. An alcoholic drug addict, he spent years wandering the streets in Connecticut, Alabama, Louisiana and Tennessee, living under overpasses and eating discarded food at food chains.

Stronghold Gaming opens in LaFayette

Extreme Gaming may have powered down, but Stronghold Gaming has taken its place, opening in downtown LaFayette. Business co-owners James Thompson and Marcus Waters bought the stock from Extreme Gaming that recently closed its doors.

Candidate qualifying dates approaching

The qualifying dates for city elections in Walker County is approaching.

Gordon Lee Memorial High renovations depend on state

After several community meetings, Chickamauga City School officials have decided to request state funding to rebuild the school’s main building.

Vietnam veterans gather in Fort Oglethorpe to share history

The History Company in Fort Oglethorpe, next to Chickamauga Battlefield, recently made for the perfect scene for a gathering of Vietnam veterans with memorabilia from their history in tow, an annual event known as The Gathering.

Christ First Church invites locals to “stand with Israel’ Aug. 27

Catoosa County’s Christ First Church is hosting “Standing with Israel” Aug. 27 at 7 p.m.

JJ Angelina’s looking for ‘beauty ambassadors’

JJ Angelina’s owner Angela Attardo is recruiting beauty ambassadors from local high schools through Sept. 1. Ringgold, Heritage and Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe High School female students are welcome to apply to win “VIP privileges” and discounts at the salon.

Methadone clinic planned in Ringgold

Ringgold Mayor Joe Barger says a methadone clinic may soon be built on Bookout Road.

Ringgold Digital Sign Committee to decide Aug. 31 whether and where to move the sign

The issue of whether to move the controversial digital sign in Ringgold was intended to be left to voters in the November election.

Alhambra Ladies’ Luncheon and Fashion Show is Aug. 29

Alhambra Ladies’ Luncheon and Fashion Show is featuring “Salad and Silhouettes” Saturday, Aug. 29.

Friends, neighbors and officials donate blood in Clopton’s name

Chickamauga’s Denise Clopton is a fighter.

Walker County Schools welcomes new technology, coordinator

Technology in daily life, including in the classroom, is now the norm. Though what to expect in regards seems to constantly be changing as new products and platforms are released.

Sunset on the Pond returns with Splash N Play Aug. 29

Rossville Downtown Development Authority is hosting Sunset on the Pond “Splash N Play” Saturday, Aug. 29 from 6-9 p.m. DDA event coordinator Andie Sellers plans to rent a big dolphin water slide and bouncy house combination for children to play on in front of the pond.

Chickamauga to see utility rates increase

Tennessee Valley Authority is announcing a power increase that will affect the city of Chickamauga.

N.Ga women’s group looking for solutions to domestic violence

Nationally, one in three women is a victim of domestic violence or sexual assault, says Dr. Valerie Radu, executive director of the new Family Justice Center in Chattanooga.

Catoosa County Chamber Golf Tournament welcomes 76 golfers to Windstone

Though the final figures haven’t been tallied, this year’s Catoosa County Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament is already considered a success.

Pie Slingers hosts #NoogaStrong fundraiser for family of Randall Smith

When 26-year-old Randall Smith left his military post in Chattanooga to come home each day, it was to a wife and three daughters under the age of 5. But after July 18, he would never come home again, having succumbed to wounds suffered during the mass shooting two days earlier.

Ringgold raises millage rate

The Ringgold City Council is raising the city millage rate from 2.763 up to 3 mills.

Bus safety is a priority in Catoosa County

To keep from repeating the tragedy that happened last year in Walker County, Catoosa County Schools Transportation Manager Jorene Jones is stressing the importance of bus safety, and this year, the department is implementing new safety measures.

CVMS welcomes new principal Wade Breeden

Chattanooga Valley Middle School’s new principal Wade Breeden is ready to start the school year.

Two Chickamauga businesses transitioning

Galleries on Gordon closed July 31 after 12 years in operation in downtown Chickamauga.

Thrifty MedPlus celebrates anniversary

Thrifty MedPlus Pharmacy welcomed about 300 customers to its 10-year anniversary celebration Aug. 4.

Northwest Georgia YMCA Summer Camp partners with C.H.A.M.P.S. program

Catoosa County Sheriff’s Office C.H.A.M.P.S. program partners with the Northwest Georgia YMCA Summer Camp.

The Gathering coming to Northwest Georgia

Each year, the Gathering takes Vietnam veterans from along the East Coast on a ride back in time via special events and networking opportunities.

Final piece of the puzzle

Planned canoe launch now open in Catoosa

The Tennessee River Blueway flows between the Nickajack and Chickamauga dams and now includes three canoe launches in Catoosa County.

Lookout Mountain, Ga., plans new city park, gateway

Lookout Mountain, Ga., is in the planning stages to create a new entryway to its town center, at the intersection of Lula Lake Road and Red Riding Hood Lane.

Chickamauga prepares for downtown improvements

The city of Chickamauga is about to get a downtown facelift through several projects.

LaFayette police radio service to be strengthened

The LaFayette Police Department is ordering 15 new 800-megahertz Motorola radios for a total of $12,730. Police Chief Bengie Clift said the current radios don’t work in various parts of the city, which can be a big problem in an emergency situation.

Citizen takes down thief at Cabela’s with MMA skills

Signal Mountain’s Houston Robertson was in the right place at the right time to help recently tackle a thief on the run from Cabela’s in Fort Oglethorpe. Robertson, who is training in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, wrestling and judo at Agoge Combatives in Rock Spring, put his training into practice that day.

Gail’s Florist growing strong for 33 years and counting

Fort Oglethorpe’s Gail’s Florist and Gifts is celebrating 33 years of business. According to owner Gail Levi Reed, the floral shop was the second business to open in its area of Battlefield Parkway. But since 1982, she has watched many businesses come in — and out.

Catoosa County business owner paddles to interesting places

Google Papua New Guinea’s “Upper Sepik” river and you’ll get just two pages of images — most of artifacts, with some people and cursory maps mixed in — and nothing on Google Maps. But the pictures of people share a common thread aside from the standard-native body markings, innocent smiles and thatched surroundings.

Outdoor options in Ringgold get upgraded

Outdoors in Ringgold, people can jog, walk, ride a bicycle or a golf cart throughout the city on a number of trails, and plans are in the works to enhance the available options.

LaFayette mulling special event beer, wine permits

LaFayette City Councilman Ben Bradford is interested in seeing the city offer single-use permits for those wishing to serve beer and wine at special events.

Sheriffs Sisk and Wilson accept SFOL donations

While some people look forward to the arrival of fall, organizers of the Catoosa and Walker County Stocking Full of Love programs are looking even farther down the calendar.

Grumpy’s Mall celebrates grand-opening

For those looking for unique reclaimed items, a trip to Grumpy’s Antique Mall is like a trip to Santa’s workshop.

Parade pays tribute to lives lost

Eighty vehicles from Catoosa and Walker counties, waving American flags, rode in memory of the fallen soldiers who were casualties of the recent shootings in Chattanooga.

Ringgold studying Akins Road, 2-A intersection traffic

The city of Ringgold is pulling Georgia Department of Transportation traffic counts for the intersection of Akins Road and Highway 2-A/Battlefield Parkway, in between the RaceTrac and former Bar-B-Q Corral.

Skidmore completes catalogue of those interred at LaFayette city cemetery, officials recognize effort

For her efforts in recording all the graves in the LaFayette city cemetery, local officials recently recognized Nancy Skidmore.

Walker school board approves $90 million budget

The Walker County Board of Education’s recently approved budget for fiscal year 2015/16, while only approximately $5,000 more than last year’s, includes $10,000 more for the Cherokee Regional Library System.

WCBOE OKs facility updates

Walker County Board of Education recently approved a series of facility updates.

Mountain Cove Farms Resort opens Wilderness Disc Golf Course

Mountain Cove Farms Resort Wilderness Disc Golf Course is now open in Chickamauga’s McLemore Cove area.

Walker County food bank celebrates 17 years

Walker County’s Demetrius Jermaine Jackson Food Bank is celebrates 17 years in operation this month.

Rossville Rec Center holds football, cheerleading sign-ups

Rossville Recreation Scenic City Youth Football and cheerleading sign ups will be Saturday, July 25 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Rossville Athletic Center, 301 Williams St. in Rossville.

Five Dollar Farm hosts weddings in Rock Spring

A new wedding venue in Rock Spring is now open at Five Dollar Farm, a 70-acre functioning cattle farm.

Chickamauga installs digital surveillance cameras

Chickamauga City Council is installing video cameras at the Chickamauga Senior Center and at Lee and Gordon’s Mills.

Ringgold’s Barger Bridge now open

Barger Bridge in Ringgold is officially opening this week.

Ruby Hardin spices up salsa with homegrown ghost peppers

The Guinness Book of World Records calls the ghost pepper the world’s hottest pepper, but that does not deter Ringgold resident Ruby Hardin from growing them in her backyard to use in her homemade salsa.

Pediatric Dentistry opens up in Ringgold

Pediatric Dentistry is expanding with a new location in Ringgold. The local practice already has locations in Ooltewah and Cleveland, Tenn.

Fort Oglethorpe’s Winner’s Circle is full of fun year-round

With 4,000 square feet covered in black lights, glow-in-the-dark wall art and peek holes, the two-story fort-like area of Winner’s Circle in Fort Oglethorpe is a dark adventure land of laser tag. Youth at can pull on a laser pack, grab a laser gun and run into the fun.

Catoosa County to hold technology conference for teachers

Catoosa County School System professional learning specialist Ingrid Jones is currently enrolling teachers in the upcoming Catoosa County Public Schools Elementary Instructional Fair, a half-day conference for teachers, administrators and paraprofessionals.