City comes through after Matthew

As I ride and look around the City of Orangeburg, the cleanup effort after Matthew is getting done. Most of the debris has been removed. Even some streets have been swept.

This would not be possible without leadership and dedicated, experienced personnel.

This is not our first experience as we have been through two ice storms and Hurricane Hugo. Also this would not be possible without the preplanning by the Department of Public Utilities and the city prior to this event.

We owe a great deal of thanks to the frontline people on the streets: DPU linemen, the Department of Public Safety, Service Department, Public Works, Parks and Recreation, and garage employees.

The office and support staff worked many long hours handling calls and fielding questions from our citizens.

Many thanks to all city and DPU employees.

I am extremely proud of staff and want to personally thank them for a job well done. We still have work to be done but it should be complete in a few weeks.

Times like this make me proud to live and work in the City of Orangeburg.

Paul A. Miller, Orangeburg

Positive impression during Matthew

I live in West Virginia and was on my way down south to assess damage to my parents’ house in South Carolina. We evacuated my 99-year-old dad and 88-year-old mom a few days earlier.

We saw The Weather Channel reports of the hurricane eye wall passing right over their community. Initial internet video postings looked like pure devastation and I wasn’t sure what would greet me upon my return.

I was on the road and had to stop for the night when I arrived in Orangeburg. It seemed every hotel was full. I came upon the Southern Lodge and immediately saw a now familiar hand-made sign, “No Vacancy.”

There was a young woman at the desk speaking with a man behind the counter. I asked if perhaps there was a last-minute cancellation. Turns out the fellow was the owner, Sam Patel.

He instructed the young lady to take another look at the reservation book but to no avail. I told him the mission I was on and he made some phone calls to the hotel workers to see if a particular group with reservations might not be needing one room. No luck.

To my amazement, he personally escorted me to another hotel in the area and inquired of the manager if they might not find me a room. They, too, had a “No Vacancy” sign in the door. The manager obviously knew and respected Patel, for in short order a room was found for me.

I cannot tell you what an impression that made on me and I can only say thanks to Patel, the Southern Lodge and to the very nice folks at Orangeburg, South Carolina! You all made my journey a little easier and allowed me to properly look after my family in the wake of Hurricane Matthew.

Tom Shipley, Slatyfork, West Virginia

Wonderland Circus to make final tour

The Wonderland Circus will make its final tour from January to March 2017.

Due to the lack of interest in the past few years, we regret that we must close.

The circus began in 1970 at Carver Middle School in Cope and has thrilled students and parents since that time, day and night.

We do not understand why department heads have declined hosting the show for just one hour during a year. The show stars aerial acts, acrobats, clowns and an animal act. Each year, the show is new.

Any school interested in the final tour is asked to call 803-387-3266. We wish to thank schools hosting us in the past and contracted for the 2017 tour.

Bill Brickle, Orangeburg


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