Thursday, February 28, 2013

Rolla Day at the Capitol showcases best of Rolla

Rolla Day at the Capitol
showcases best of Rolla
Despite a winter storm that dropped five inches of snow on Jefferson City, Rolla Day at the Capitol, sponsored by the Rolla Area Chamber of Commerce, was held on Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2013. Pictured in front of the City of Rolla’s display in the Senate Rotunda at the State Capitol  are (l to r):  Dan Woodward, an American artist and founding member of ArtsRolla; Bob Priddy, five-time author, notable historian and News Director of The Missourinet; Sue Stoltz, Area manager, Mid-Missouri, Bott radio Network (BRN); Sarah Grahl, a sophomore at Rolla High School and staff writer for the ECHO newspaper at RHS; and Sergeant Vince Giacolone, VIPS Director and Community Police Officer, Rolla Police Department. Rolla Day at the Capitol provides Rolla area businesses, organizations and groups a unique opportunity to set up displays, share information and literature, and network with legislators and visitors at the State Capitol. (Scott Grahl/City of Rolla photos).

Sergeant Vince Giacolone, VIPS Director and Community Police Officer, Rolla Police Department, (pictured left) visits with Missouri State Senator Dan Brown (District 16, Republican) during Rolla Day at the Capitol on Feb. 27, 2013 in the Senate Rotunda at the State Capitol.

Bob Priddy, News Director of the Missourinet, and well known author and historian, visits with Sarah Grahl, a sophomore at Rolla High School, during Rolla Day at the Capitol on Feb. 26 in the Senate Rotunda at the State Capitol in Jefferson City. Priddy spends time every year visiting with Rolla leaders, the Rolla Area Chamber of Commerce staff, Rolla business owners, organizations, municipalities and groups that participate in Rolla Day at the Capitol. 

Monday, February 25, 2013

MoDOT offers Tips to keep driveways clear

The Missouri Department of Transportation crews plan to be out in full force clearing roads and bridges as another round of winter weather prepares to hit central Missouri. Unfortunately, the snow cleared from state roadways has to go somewhere and could end up in driveways. 

"As our plows come through, snow plowed from roads could be redeposited in private driveways," said Central District Engineer David Silvester. "We know this is inconvenient, but due to limited time and resources, plows can only clear private driveways at the request of local emergency officials." 

To reduce the amount of snow that might block your driveway, Silvester suggests shoveling an open area along the shoulder at the entrance. Plow blades will then push snow into the area just before your driveway, leaving a much smaller amount in front of it.

MoDOT has produced a video illustrating how to clear driveways without having plows push snow back.  That video can be found on the MoDOT YouTube channel at

Motorists are urged to use caution and care when driving and to check MoDOT's Traveler Information Map at or call toll-free 1-888-275-6636 for the latest road conditions.

Driving safely prevents needless accidents, injuries

Mayor Bill Jenks, III
 If there is anything in downtown Rolla that needs a second look, you can be sure there are plenty of merchants, business owners and shoppers on Pine Street in downtown Rolla that care a lot about looking twice in both directions, using proper traffic signals and following the traffic lane laws.
I’m particularly concerned about the reoccurring problem of motorists – intentionally or not –making left turns on one-way streets out of the right lane and making right turns out of the left lane on one-way streets.  I am seeing this more and more and just last week there was an accident in front of our office when someone wanted to turn into the Bank of America parking lot was northbound on Pine in the right hand lane, turned left and hit a car also Northbound in the left lane in the passenger door. It is very important to be in whatever lane you are ultimately planning on turning in. Sometimes I wonder how people get their driver’s license, but I am noticing this more and more.
Whenever the traffic is light in the downtown area, there is a temptation and tendency to want to ignore the rules of the road that indicate proper stripping, signage and lane usage. But please don’t ignore these rules, as they exist for your safety and the safety of the motoring public. 
And while we are on the subject of motor vehicle safety, I’d like to also bring up the importance of pedestrian safety; particularly the need to stop at designated crosswalks. Since Rolla is a university town where thousands of students are going to and from classes all day long, it is imperative to stop whenever you see a pedestrian at a crosswalk. Wait for them to safely cross the street, and then proceed in the direction you were headed in. It will only take a few more seconds, but it could mean avoiding an injury, and even worse.
Many drivers are also preoccupied with talking on their cell phones, texting, listening to their I-Pods, and even eating and drinking while driving. It only takes a split second to get distracted, become disoriented, or make the wrong adjustment before you have an unfortunate accident, or worse yet, hit another pedestrian.
In closing I’d like to thank everyone who participated in the Healthy Heart Zumba Party last night, Friday, Feb. 22 at Eugene Northern Community Hall. This is a great fundraiser for the Heart to Heart Committee, which is a branch of the Foundation at Phelps County Regional Medical Center (P.C.R.M.C.), and I’d like to especially thank The Centre staff and P.C.R.M.C. for co-hosting this heart healthy event. Thanks to everyone who participated in this event, the Heart to Heart Committee has been able to gift countless men and women in our community screenings that they would otherwise not be able to afford.
The Centre will host yet another community-wide event next Saturday on March 2 during the Youth Chess Tournament at The Centre (1200 N. Holloway St.). Players of all levels are invited to participate in this fun day of chess. Players should bring their own chess set if they have one. If not, the Parks and Recreation Dept. will provide one. Staunton chess sets only please.
The entry fee is $5 for Centre members and $10 for non-members. There will be three age divisions: 1st-4th Grades; 5th-7th Grade and 8th Grade & up. The top three place winners in each of three age groups will receive awards. Pre-registration is encouraged, but on-site registration will be available from 8 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. the day of the tournament. The tournament will start promptly at 9 a.m. For more information, or to register over the phone, please call the Rolla Parks and Recreation Department/The Centre at 573-341-2386.
Have a nice weekend and a safe week!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

City to participate in Rolla Day at The Capitol Feb. 26

The City of Rolla will be once again join the Rolla Area Chamber of Commerce and other Rolla and Phelps County organizations, businesses and institutions for Rolla Day at The Capitol on Tuesday, Feb. 26 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Senate Rotunda at the State Capitol in Jefferson City.
This annual event, hosted and coordinated by the staff at the Rolla Chamber, is an opportunity for the City and other groups that attend to showcase the Rolla community. It is also a unique opportunity to visit with our legislators, and others who attend the event, about issues facing our community.
This year, the City’s Administration Department and Rolla Police Department will share a booth at Rolla Day at the Capitol that will include table-top displays, brochures, magazines, newsletters, comprehensive plans, and hand-outs of all eight departments in the City. The City will also use a large plasma screen to run a ‘Community of Choice’ State of the City slide show presentation that features an overview of City operations, economic conditions, sales tax revenues, current projects, economic development, and services the various City departments offer the community.
It’s not unusual to see hundreds of students, faculty and teachers throughout the state taking school-related field trips to the Capitol during this event, as well as other associations, groups and organizations – not to mention tourists and visitors to the Capitol - who have an opportunity to meet with City staff and learn more about the Rolla community.
While not everyone will have the time or opportunity to attend this event, I would encourage anyone who does, to please stop by the Senate Rotunda at the state Capitol on Feb. 26 between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. to see the various displays, visit with those who are participating in, and talk to your legislators and elected officials. It’s a great networking opportunity, and there is always a lot of great information that will make your visit worthwhile.