9 Lynchburg things to do while social distancing

shelter dog, fishing, barbecue
Walk a shelter dog, go fishing at Tims Ford, or barbecue … social distancing doesn’t mean you have to stay stuck inside. {File Photo}

Distillery tours are shut down, Moore County schools are closed … now what? On March 15, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) released new guidance for stopping the spread of COVID-19 related illness. According to the CDC website, they “recommend that for the next eight weeks, organizers (whether groups or individuals) cancel or postpone in-person events that consist of 10 people or more throughout the United States.”

It’s called “social distancing” and it refers to a specific set of recommended actions taken by public health officials to stop or slow down the spread of a highly contagious virus like COVID-19. It includes avoiding things like meeting in large groups as well as closing buildings, and cancelling events. But it doesn’t mean you have to stay stuck inside your home. There are lots of things you can do in the Lynchburg area.

1 | Explore Tims Ford State Park – It’s made up of 1,321 glorious, picturesque acres and there’s plenty of room for locals to explore without being on top of each other. It includes four hiking trails, three mountain bike trails, as well as three paved multi-use paths. It also happens to offer some of the best bass fishing in the South plus the Bear Trace Golf Course.

2 | Order take out from a local restaurant – Sure, we’re supposed to be avoiding dining in restaurants but that doesn’t mean you can’t order out. You can’t survive on snack food forever. Place a to go order at a local Lynchburg restaurant. We bet they’ll even offer curbside delivery if you ask.

3| Drop off a care package – We’re all in this together and now is the time to step up and take care of the less fortunate or vulnerable in our community. That includes that new mom, the elderly couple down the street, or the neighbor living with asthma. Pick some wildflowers, bake some homemade cookies, heck, be extravagant and give them a roll of toilet paper.

4| Shop local – Easter is right around the corner … so is Mother’s Day. The charming shops located in Lynchburg offer so many homemade, handmade, creative, original gift ideas. The Distillery tours are shut down for two weeks, so we’ve got the place all to our selves. If every person reading this just spent an extra $20 each week during the coronavirus response, it would make a huge difference.

5| Go fishing – Lynchburg’s blessed with several, amazing local waterbodies. Tims Ford Lake offers first class bass fishing. The Elk River is world-renown for its trout fishing. Fishing legend and Lynchburg native Bill Dance learned to hook em’ in the Mulberry Creek. Grab a pole and head out to a nice, secluded watering hole. And don’t forget your Tennessee fishing license.

6| Clean out your closets (and donate your stuff to Moore County Operation Spay/Neuter – You’ve got some time on your hands and spring is only a few days away. Why not get a head start on that spring cleaning? And before you throw anything away or sent it to Goodwill consider donating any “gently used” items to Moore County Operation Spay/Neuter and let them sell it on their online auction site. All proceeds fund spaying and neutering the community animals of Lynchburg. Click here to learn more.

7| Throw something on the grill – Woodard’s Market here in Lynchburg boasts one of the best fresh meat departments in the state. They offer a wide selection and if you don’t see what you want, just ask and they’ll cut it for you. Since we’re cooped up inside, why not barbecue … and maybe even share with a neighbor.

8| Check out the local e-library – The lobby of our local public library is closed to walk in traffic but that doesn’t mean that you can’t still check out materials. The Moore County Public Library offers tons of digital check out options including the Libby app that you can download to your smart device. Click here for all those options.

9 | Walk or foster a Moore County Friends of Animals pet – There’s nothing that soothes a bit of cabin fever like a wet nose or a furry tail. You’re going to be stuck at home a lot, so why spend that time with a local shelter dog … even if it temporary. Contact the Moore County Friends of Animals at 931-434-7508 to inquire about walking or fostering a shelter dog.

{The Lynchburg Times is the only independently owned and operated newspaper in Moore County … covering Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, the Lynchburg Music Fest, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}

5 ways to un-Christmas and do a little local good

Wednesday is January 1 … a new beginning … a fresh start. Many of us are taking down our Christmas decorations, cleaning out closets, and de-cluttering for the new year. Don’t just send all that stuff to area landfills. There are several ways to let your unwanted items do a little local good:

1 | Donate Your Artificial Trees to the Moore County Library – If you bought a new Christmas tree this year and don’t quite know what to do with the old one, the Moore County Public Library would love to take your old artificial tree to use during their summer reading program. Donated trees may be dropped off as the rear entrance to the building.

2 | Re-gift to Moore County Spay & Neuter – Did you receive a Christmas gift that’s just not your style, the wrong size, or a duplicate. Re-gift it to Moore County Operation Spay/Neuter and they’ll resale it on their auction Facebook page. All funds raised are used to spay and neuter local “community animals” … from Lynchburg Square cats and other areas. All re-gift donations will remain anonymous. You can drop of donations at Lynchburg Vet Hospital or Lynchburg Gifts & More.

3| Pack a Give Back Box – Take one of the Amazon or other boxes your Christmas items arrived in, pack it full of new or gently used items you no longer need, print a free shipping label from the Give Back Box website, and ship your items to an area Goodwill. You can also drop off items locally at the Goodwill Store located in Tullahoma.

4| Donate Your Real Trees to the Elephants – Hohenwald, Tennessee is home to one of the largest elephant sanctuaries in the country. There are 11 elephants in residence there who have retired from zoos and circuses and they can eat up 150 pounds of food a day. Christmas trees contain plant material and resin that are high in nutrients. Donated trees may be brought to the The Elephant Sanctuary located at 27 East Main Street. Please make sure they are free of all tinsel, decorations, etc. For more information, click here.

5 | Recycle Your Real Trees with the Fishes – Your real Christmas tree may have served it’s holiday purpose but you can donate them to the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) and make a fish’s day. The TWRA will accept live, undecorated tree donations at the Fall Creek Falls State Park Boat Dock on January 8. All donated trees will be sunk into area lakes to improve fish habitat. For more information, visit their Facebook page. •

{The Lynchburg Times is an independently owned and operated newspaper that publishes new stories every morning. Covering Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}

Locals launch Moore County Operation Spay/Neuter

LOCAL NEWS — A group of concerned local merchants, dedicated volunteers, Lynchburg Friends of Animals, Lynchburg Veterinary Hospital, and this newspaper have joined forces to attack the problem of unspayed and unneutered stray and abandoned animals in Lynchburg. They launched Moore County Operation Spay/Neuter on November 3.

Feral cats have lived on the Lynchburg Square for over 20 years. They meander around minding their own business and mostly staying out of the way. They’re charming, mostly harmless, and tend to keep any would be rodent problem in check. But they have health needs just like any other pet. Without adequate vet attention, feral cat communities can quickly get out of hand. One female cat can have up to three litters of four kittens each per year. That means just one unsterilized female cat can produce up to 180 kittens in her lifetime.

Cue Moore County Operation Spay/Neuter

Square merchants recently partnered with the Lynchburg Vet Hospital to trap, spay/neuter, and re-release feral cats around the Lynchburg Square. And they were feeling pretty good about their efforts too, until they realized there was a much bigger problem.

“We got a call from Moore County Head Start that there were cats there as well, including a momma with new kittens,” says Michelle Stubblefield, the owner of Lynchburg Gifts & More and one of the concerned local merchants. “Then neighbors near the Lynchburg Cemtery reported that cats were getting dumped there as well.”

Stubblefield says the immediate goal of the group is to get appropriate vet care for those recently discovered animals, including spaying and neutering, so that those feral communities don’t get out of hand.

“It’s really sad, because these animals can not control their circumstances,” says Stubblefield. “They deserve the best, most healthy life we can give them.”

Online fund-raising page

This handmade Jack Daniel birdhouse created by local Sara Hope is just one of the items available on the Operation Spay/Neuter Fund-raising page.

The group plans to raise money for the project with a concept that’s a win-win for supporters. They’ve create a fund-raising page on Facebook that offers short term, silent auctions of items donated by local merchants and the community at large. Page administrators post new items almost daily with photos and a suggested minimum bid. Then those who follow the page have seven days to bid on the items. At the end of seven days, the highest bids wins.

Currently, the page offers mostly items that would make great holiday gifts. Moving forward they’ll operate as one part silent auction, one part indoor yard sale, and one part social media flea market with cool finds, Jack Daniel collectibles, repurposed furniture, local art, handmade items, and other generously donated items.

One hundred percent of the money goes to the Operation Spay/Neuter Fund at the Lynchburg Veterinary Hospital. Once the immediate needs of the community animals at the square, head start, and cemetery are met, the group hopes to continue to fund raise and offer low cost spaying and neutering for Moore County residents.

To join the page click here. Those who would like to donate an item may drop it off at Lynchburg Gifts & More. Donated items are also on display at the Lynchburg Veterinary Hospital. •

{The Lynchburg Times is an independently owned and operated newspaper that publishes new stories every morning. Covering Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}