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World Breastfeeding Week is August 1-7, 2015

People today know the importance of breastfeeding. While most new mothers start out breastfeeding, many Oklahoma mothers are not able to exclusively breastfeed for six months nor continue for up to 2 years of age as recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). One of the challenges they face is continuing to breastfeed after they return to work.

The Okmulgee County Health Department is promoting World Breastfeeding Week, Aug. 1-7 with the theme Breastfeeding and Work: Let’s Make it Work. The goal is to empower and support all women, working in both the formal and informal sectors, to adequately combine work with child-rearing, particularly breastfeeding.
Data provided in the 2012 Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System (PRAMS) and The Oklahoma Toddler Survey (TOTS, 2013) compiled by OSDH indicates that 85.6 percent of Oklahoma mothers initiated breastfeeding. However, only 34.8 percent of Oklahoma mothers breastfed for six or more months.

Major medical organizations such as the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Association of Family Physicians recommend that babies receive nothing but breastmilk during the first six months of life, and continue receiving breastmilk for at least the first year and beyond. Like any aspect of raising a child, breastfeeding requires encouragement from a team of people.

“Many mothers say their efforts to breastfeed are enhanced by having support at home or at work, as well as receiving breastfeeding instruction and education from healthcare providers,” said Okmulgee County Health Department Administrator William R. Pierson. “Since breastfeeding provides significant health benefits for both mother and baby, it is important that family members, clinicians, friends, and employers know how they can help make breastfeeding easier.”

OSDH and the Coalition of Oklahoma Breastfeeding Advocates (COBA) recognize worksites that meet the following criteria for becoming breastfeeding friendly:

• Flexible break times and a private location are provided for mothers to express milk.
• A water source is accessible for washing hands and breast pump equipment.
• A written breastfeeding policy is established.

For information about becoming a Breastfeeding Friendly Worksite, and a list of current recognized sites, visit the Oklahoma breastfeeding website at http://bis.health.ok.gov. For breastfeeding support and information, call the Oklahoma Breastfeeding Hotline toll free at 1-877-271-MILK (6455), or call the Okmulgee County Health Department at (918)756-1883.

Published in Okmulgee in the News

East Central Electric will hold their Annual meeting on July 23 at 7 p.m. on the OSU-IT campus in Covelle Hall.

Each attending member who registers will receive a $20 bill credit. Registration begins at 5 p.m. with lots of activities for the family to enjoy with kids games and activities, arts and craft booths, food, refreshments and more. Plus hundreds of dollars will be given away in cash prizes. The Grand Prize giveaway is a 2008 Chevrolet 1500, 4-Wheel Drive pickup.

During the meeting guests will hear reports from officers and trustees. There will be the election of two trustees in districts 2 and 5, and a vote on the proposed Bylaw changes. ECE would like the public to know there will be air conditioned meeting areas.

Attendees are asked to allow enough time for parking and registration prior to the 7 p.m. start of the business meeting. A free shuttle service will be available. After registration, members do not need to be present at the time of prize drawings to win

ECE AnnualMeeting2015

Published in Okmulgee in the News

 JeremyHayes

Former Okmulgee County native Jeremy Hays is currently starring in The Phantom of The Opera, the popular musical on Broadway, as the character Raoul, the Phantom's handsome arch rival. Jeremy made his Broadway debut in Les Miserables. His additional credits include the U.S. tour of Cats and presently as Rauol in the famous The Phantom of the Opera musical on Broadway.  He recently resigned his contract to perform another 6 months.

This Sunday he will be performing for the Chicago Symphony and will be singing 4 songs. Jeremy will return to the Phantom musical after this performance in Chicago.

Jeremy was born in Okmulgee and attended Henryetta school until his junior year and finished his senior year at Holland Hall after receiving a full scholarship fee waiver. He later attended and graduated Oklahoma City University and moved to New York where he has lived since that time 10 years ago. 

Published in Okmulgee in the News

Traveling throughout Okmulgee County this week will two FEMA Disaster Survivor Assistance teams (DSA Team).

They’re easy to spot and here to help - DSA teams will be traveling in red vans and wearing shirts with the FEMA logo. DAS teams are here to help survivors get information and guidance about what disaster assistant may be available.

Also, Okmulgee County Emergency Management is pleased to announce that a Mobile Disaster Recovery Center (MDRC) will open in Okmulgee County. This is to help individuals and business owners who were affected by the severe storms, straight-line winds, flooding and tornadoes occurring May 5 through June 4.

The Okmulgee County MDRC will be open at during two five day time periods:

Location: Green Country Technology Center.
Building #3, 1100 N. Hwy.56 Loop, Okmulgee, OK 74447

Dates: July 23 - 28, 2015 and then on August 6 -11, 2015

Hours: Thursday 1 p.m. to 7 p.m.;
Then Friday, Saturday, Monday & Tuesday 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.;
and on Sunday 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

You need to act quickly to apply for disaster assistance. Reminder: Individuals and business owners may also to apply for Individual Assistance via:

Phone: 1-800-621-FEMA (3362)
On the Web: www.disasterassistance.gov

MDRCs are one-stop shops where survivors can get information and guidance about what disaster assistance may be available. Information from the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the U.S. Small Business Administration and other federal agencies and volunteer organizations is available at these recovery centers.

Published in Okmulgee in the News

The Okmulgee Public Library has reported $1582.86 in receipts including fines, copies, lost books, according to the June 2015 monthly report. The report was in the agenda for the Okmulgee City Council meeting for Tuesday, July 21.

Also reported 132 new borrowers, 366 reference questions, 312 new items added to the library, while 4970 people came through the library doors.

The daily average circulation is 337 and computer use for patrons is 1486. Interlibrary loans include 22 books borrowed for Okmulgee and 4 lent to other libraries.

The library saw a good participation in their Summer Reading program.  The attendance was at 665 for the duration of the program.

“The program attendance has increased over the last year. The performers have been entertaining and the children have had a lot of fun,” states the comment section of the report.

The summer program continues in July for children ages 5-12 on Wednesdays in June and July. Shows are at 1:00 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. Please call (918)-756-1448 for more information.

The Library offers home delivery to people who are unable to come to the library. Book deliveries to the homebound and nursing homes include 6 weekly and 2 every other week to Rebold Manor, 1 each week to Plantation, 1 each week to Highland Park, 2 every other week to Baptist Village. Homebound’s have received 5 each week and 5 every other week. The library will be gearing up for back to school with the use to the tutoring rooms, which totalled 58 patrons for the two rooms combined for the month of June.  If you would like to use this service contact Danielle Neldon at (918)-756-1448.

Enjoy the Okmulgee Library

Anyone living or working in Okmulgee County may check out library materials at no cost. Parents must accompany children under 18 when signing up for a library card. To receive a library card you need to come to the library and fill out an application card. A picture ID is required.  The library is located at 218 South Okmulgee Okmulgee, OK 74447 and is open daily Monday through Saturday and closed on Sundays. The library number is (918)-756-1448.

Published in Okmulgee in the News
Wednesday, 22 July 2015 10:58

Closed Flooded Roadways in Okmulgee County

Okmulgee, Okla. -- In the last 48 hours areas in Okmulgee County have received from two to six inched of rain (as measured in several area local rain gages).

Currently all the of the flooded areas are south of Hwy 16.

Here is a current listing of the closed roadways.

Sharp Rd west of Madison Rd
Hwy 62 and S. 310 Road
Dentonville Rd south of Hwy 16
Alt 75 north of the city of Beggs, at the Railroad bridge
Ash Rd between Mission and Prairie Bell Rd, South of the City of Okmulgee
Skyline Drive north of Hwy 62
Prairie Bell Road north of Hwy 62

We remind the public: please do not drive around barricades or drive into flooded roadways.
Turn around don't drown.

Published in Okmulgee in the News

Okmulgee, Okla. -- Okmulgee County Emergency Management is pleased to announce that a Mobile Disaster Recovery Center (MDRC) will open in Okmulgee County. This is to help individuals and business owners who were affected by the severe storms, straight-line winds, flooding and tornadoes occurring May 5 through June 4.

The Okmulgee County MDRC will be open at during two five day time periods:

Location: Green Country Technology Center.
Building #3, 1100 N. Hwy.56 Loop, Okmulgee, OK 74447

Dates: July 23 - 28, 2015 and then on August 6 -11, 2015

Hours: Thursday 1 p.m. to 7 p.m.;
Then Friday, Saturday, Monday & Tuesday 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.;
and on Sunday 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

You need to act quickly to apply for disaster assistance. Reminder: Individuals and business owners may also to apply for Individual Assistance via:

Phone: 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) Web: www.disasterassistance.gov

MDRCs are one-stop shops where survivors can get information and guidance about what disaster assistance may be available. Information from the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the U.S. Small Business Administration and other federal agencies and volunteer organizations is available at these recovery centers.

Published in Okmulgee in the News

The Okmulgee Summer Multicultural Enrichment Program visited the Orpheum Theatre in Okmulgee for the second time this summer. A special showing of The Minions was made available to the program with popcorn and drinks for the children that attended.

Rae Ann Wilson, the program director, stated that while the children had a great time, the day started off hectic with the program buses becoming unable to transport the children to the Orpheum and the 95 children who were in attendance had to be transported by personal cars. Wilson also stated that despite the chaos, all of the children were in good spirits.

The program began June 3 at the Okmulgee Middle School campus 1421 E. MLK Drive in Okmulgee.
Sessions are held Tuesday through Friday from 11 to 4 p.m. and continue through July 29. The program is for ages 4 through 18. The program was free for those who signed up and participants received a free lunch and snack.

The Okmulgee Summer Multi-Cultural Enrichment Program began in 1996 as a joint effort by two local church youth directors, initially serving their church youth. In 1997, the Okmulgee Chamber of Commerce adopted the program concept and expanded its service to Okmulgee and surrounding area.

The goal of the program is to teach youth basic social skills and responsible behavior. Training is also focused on life skills and the development of cultural exchange and understanding. Throughout the program youths are encouraged to share their creative talents.

The program provides a positive alternative to a summer filled with many things to do as the program encourages oral and written expression and creativity. The program requires exercise, self-discipline and respect to others.

Youth can enjoy a safe environment of learning and fun activities when otherwise they may become idle or be unattended during the summer months. Lunches and snacks are provided through the Oklahoma Department of Education and Child Nutrition Program.

The average daily attendance is 125-130.

Published in Okmulgee in the News

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A new mural is being painted in the Jim Newport pocket park on 6th street. The mural is being painted by local artist Kenneth Hollingshead and will feature four panels that display local Okmulgee icons such as the Orpheum, the spillway, the library, and the Okmulgee High School. Each panel is set under an archway to illustrate the idea of peeking through each arch to see the actual landmark.

Antoher 2016 Mural project has also been approved with a $5,000 grant. Okmulgee residents will have the opportunity to vote on the artist and the location of the new mural. Canvases are currently being sent out of area artists and those who chose to participate have till December to submit their entries. Artists must also submit a history of their works and in February, the public will be invited to attend a “Food For Thought” dinner where they can buy a meal and a vote for the artist of their choice.

**Watch for more exciting news coming to this park!**

Photos by Allen Gardner - ONN

Published in Okmulgee in the News

Veterans IMG 6016 CAM

Congressman Markwayne Mullin appeared Friday at the Veterans Information Day that was held at the Okmulgee Community Center. The program began promptly at 10 a.m. with a prayer led by Okmulgee Commissioner Bobby Hardridge and an introduction of the Congressman and word of thanks from Mayor Steven Baldridge.

Mullin, Congressman for Oklahoma’s second district, began his presentation with a thanks to the Korean and Vietnam Veterans stating “Welcome home and thank you!” A delayed thanks was given to the WW2 veterans in attendance.

Mullin also spoke on the tenacity of the spouses who are fighting for those that they love and their rights. Before opening the floor to the questions, Mullin cautioned, “Let us not turn this into something to be upset about. We are here to help you. I am here to help you. Don’t let this be a ‘grip-fest’. We are here to help each other find help. Lets rally around the flag and work together.”

Mullin then opened the floor for questions or concerns from the veterans or their family members. Several organizations were on hand to discuss with the attendees at length on issues such as grants for service members, aid for veteran widows, the possibility of a veterans court in Okmulgee County which would serve to handle any infractions committed by veterans.

The biggest discussion was held on what Mullin could do to ensure service member safety while on their station. Mullin stated that the issue would be at the discretion of President Obama. The subject was brought up in the wake of the killing of four marines recruiters in Chattanooga, Tennessee while in a recruiting station. One attendee stated “Military should be armed at all times. They are trained. The police can carry, why is the military prohibited from doing the same?”

Mullin explained that while it would make sense for service members to have a way to protect themselves while at their duty station, that it is not a simple matter with a simple solution.  “I don't want to see this happen again. Understand there is a fine line between military and law enforcement and we can’t be in the position to make snap judgements and lose more of our freedoms,” says Mullin.

Stacie Williams with Jack C. Montgomery VA Medical Center a Veterans Choice Champion then took the stage to introduce the various programs in attendance that could be of service to the veterans, including Supportive Services for Veteran Families - SSVF, the Orthotic and Prosthetic Department of OSUIT which specialized in veteran services, Deep Fork Community Action who offered information on prescription help, housing, weatherization of homes, as well as insurance and fingerprinting services.

Also available to speak with attendees were the Okmulgee Chamber of Commerce and the Oklahoma Employment Security Commission.  (Look for the video of this meeting coming up!)

Photos by Paul Orosco - ONN Chief Photographer

Published in Political News
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