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Local columns

In a Nutshell: Looking back at Brownie’s

MARIETTA — Pearley L. Brown opened Brown’s Bakery on lower Front Street in 1952. In 1964, Neil took over from his father and reopened at 258 Front St., as Brownie’s Donut and Pastry Shop. Raising a young family and starting a business wasn’t easy, but we managed. Neil always said ...

Reporter’s Notebook: Slowing the pendulum swing

I normally steer clear of national politics in this space. I’m paid to pay more attention to West Virginia government and politics. But it doesn’t mean I don’t observe the national scene since actions by our federal government trickle down to the state. In two weeks, the Electoral ...

So much for which to be thankful

(EDITOR’S NOTE: This column was originally published Nov. 25). *** This Thanksgiving is unlike any Americans living today have ever observed. We are in a war against an invisible enemy. Yet we have so much for which to be thankful. We see blessings all around us, as the vast majority of ...

A case of the stubborns

Ever try to save brown bananas by making banana bread? It seems such a waste to throw them out, right? That’s a whole 90 cents you’re talking about, after all. Last weekend, I tried to salvage two bananas ... because a new bunch had been placed in the bowl. (Yes, I suffer from produce ...

Look Back: 1885 penitentiary visit continues

Many of the convicts make considerable money by extra labor, and they are allowed to purchase tobacco, cigars, fruits, books, in fact any article they may need. Many of them have their cells nicely fitted up and are apparently comfortable, and it is not an uncommon thing for a prisoner to have ...

First taste of the holidays

You might be wondering why I would choose a title like “First Taste of the Holidays?” After you read my article you will understand why. We just went through the most boring, lonely, quiet and disappointing Thanksgiving that I have ever experienced. This is the first year in my 55 years ...

Cookbooks offer recipes to help save you time

Two new cookbooks are out that will teach you how to use several home cooking accessories, including my favorite, The Instant Pot, as well as how to save time cooking from frozen — something I never especially enjoy doing. In “Instant Family Meals” by Sarah Copeland, there are plenty ...

An attitude of gratitude!

Whenever I see my friend, Hall of Fame Speaker and author Dr. Willie Jolley at our professional speakers’ conferences and ask, “How are you doing Willie?”, he always responds, “I’m blessed and highly favored.” Willie truly is blessed and highly favored. He has a great marriage, ...

Christmas stories to cozy up with

A novella is available wherever you download books right now to get you in the Christmas spirit with “Candy Cane Crime” by Amanda Flower. Flower brings back a side character from her Amish Candy Shop series to track down a candy cane mystery. While Charlotte has been helping her English ...

Giving thanks for what we have

Thanksgiving is a particular time, like the bright and shining poetic moments of Camelot, to express gratitude for our own particular circumstances. It has been my custom for several years now to share with you my own personal litany of Thanksgiving. Looking over these pieces for the last ...

Reporter’s Notebook: Masquerade not much of a ball

I wrote my column last week prior to last Friday’s expansion of the mandatory indoor mask executive order by Gov. Jim Justice. But it seems since that order came out and since the governor’s comments saying business owners can call the police on customers who refuse to comply, confusion has ...

Be the bad guy this Thanksgiving

No one wants to spoil the party. For that reason, Thanksgiving Day and the ensuing weekend will include big, traditional family get-togethers, just as they have for many years. For some people, Thanksgiving rivals Christmas as their favorite time of the year. It’s easy to understand. ...

Be a hero to local businesses

Yes, yes, the official Shop Small/Shop Local events are all NEXT weekend. But I know enough people who have a disturbing head start on their Christmas shopping this year, that I figure I’d better get a jump on things. If you are not among those who are already sending giant boxes to friends ...

Look Back: Locals spent term in Moundsville

Stars and Bars: A visit to the West Virginia Penitentiary at Moundsville The West Virginia Penitentiary is an institution in which Parkersburg and Wood county has a particular interest, by virtue of the fact that nearly one-tenth of all the prisoners confined within its walls have been sent ...

Sweet as pie any way you slice it

Thanksgiving is the time of year that most people think about baking pies. And two new pie books have you covered this year. First is “The Book on Pie” by Erin Jeanne McDowell. McDowell has plenty of pies to choose from, as well as recipes for different kinds of pie crusts, whether its ...

When a stranger becomes a dear friend

In Greece there is a saying that “only the mountains do not meet” and I will share a story to confirm that statement. In the summer of 2006 we took our annual trip to Greece and that year also we included a week in Amsterdam and Belgium… Upon returning from Europe we would always ...

Shopping small, helping big in downtown Parkersburg

Downtown PKB along with several other downtown businesses have put together an exciting line-up of activities and shopping for Shop Small (previously Small Business Saturday) on Friday, Nov. 27 and Saturday, Nov. 28. Shop and eat in downtown Parkersburg and kick off your holiday season by ...

You either use it or you lose it

It was just a year ago. Laying in my hospital bed I watched my leg muscles shrink, wasting away because I couldn’t put any pressure on them. I could work my upper body and keep those muscles in tone. My arms got me to my wheelchair and in and out of the car. Muscles lose tone and get weak ...

‘The Push’ a tale of new life, murder

Six couples that met in an expectant mother group come together for a party to welcome the newborns that ends in murder in “The Push” by Claire McGowan. While a young police officer investigates the crime, the reader still doesn’t know who was murdered. Or why. Following several of the ...

MOV Parent: Dealing with unwanted guest during holidays

The holiday season is the culmination of the year. November and December bring times of celebrating with family, friends and the community. Occasionally, we have to deal with someone that makes the holidays less enjoyable, like Cousin Eddie in “Christmas Vacation.” This year, we all have ...