Local News: Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Holiday World Plans New Rides & Features for 2018

SANTA CLAUS — Holiday World Splashin’ Safari has announced it will invest millions of dollars in to building new slides and other attractions for the upcoming 2018 season.

The $3.9 million investment includes a new water slide complex with 8 junior slides, including twisters, a helix, a mini bowl and two racing slides.

The park also plans to add more water attractions for the younger kids, including a junior wave pool.

Plans also include a huge themed maze for Happy Halloween Weekends and new entertainment such as a magic show, stunt show, and strolling brass band.

Holiday World Splashin Safari opens for the 2018 season in May, but season passes are already on sale just in time for the gift-giving season.


Two County Employees Honored by State Group

JASPER — Two Dubois County Community Corrections employees are being recognized by a state agency.

Case worker Mitch Lampert won the Case Manager of the Year award by the Indiana Association of Community Corrections Act Counties.

Supervisor Emily Meyer won the Residential / Work Release Staff Member of the Year award from the same organization.

Durlauf, who nominated Lampert, called him a farmer who plants seeds, waters the crops and fertilizes the soil; adding he has a deep understanding that his daily efforts will help the crops grow.

Meyer was described as enthusiastic and always improving her skills to become a better leader in the department.


Farbest Foods Expansion Moves Closer to Reality

HUNTINGBURG — Farbest Foods has announced it plans to invest millions of dollars in improvements to its Huntingburg facility.

As we’ve been reporting, the company also plans to move its headquarters to Jasper.

Our friends at the Free Press report the company asked the Huntingburg Economic Development Commission for $3.5 million in tax increment finance backed-bonds to support the planned $21.7 million dollar expansion.

The increased property tax increment that will occur with the improvements to Farbest’s Huntingburg plant will be used to pay back the bonds for the new HQ.

Farbest president Ted Seger says the updates will modernize and automate several processes at the plant.

The upgrades come with a cost.  Farbest tells media partner WFIE TV, 13 jobs will be lost with the upgrades.

The City Commission already approved the company’s request.

It goes to the planning commission for review next week.


Record Number of Thanksgiving Travelers Expected This Year

STATEWIDE — If you are traveling in the car for Thanksgiving, you better be ready to see a lot more motorists on the road than usual. In fact, you’ll see a record number, according to AAA.

“Nearly 51 million Americans are going to travel 50 miles or more from home. That’s a dramatic increase just over last year. It’s also the highest travel volume we’ve seen since 2005,” said AAA Public Relations Manager Greg Seiter from the Indianapolis office. “The economy is improving. People are feeling better about things in general. We have rising payroll as well. There’s just an overall feeling that things are better in the economy.”

89% of Thanksgiving travelers will be in automobiles.

“That means our roadways are going to be very busy. That’s actually a 3.2% increase just over last year,” Seiter said.

It also means you’re going to be paying more at the pump.

“This is going to be the highest gas price average that we’ve seen since 2014. A lot of that has to do with the overall travel volume right now. Demand for gasoline is up and we’ve had some pipeline problems as well.”

Since gas is high in demand, you’re going to want to fill up before you hit the road or do it before Thanksgiving Day.

“Not every gas station is going to be open on Thanksgiving Day. The best advice I can give is to gas up today. Prices certainly aren’t where we want them to be, but it’s still a good idea to gas up and be ready to go,” Seiter said.

  • WITZ / WQKZ is an affiliate of Network Indiana and Fox News Radio


National Christmas Tree Shortage Reported

STATEWIDE — If a real tree is a must-have for your Christmas, you may want to get one early this year.

A national Christmas tree “shortage” means fewer trees at higher prices. The most popular trees — like the Fraser fir — could sell out earlier than normal.

The National Christmas Tree Association tells Newsweek magazine that you might want to buy your tree now, especially if you have a particular variety in mind. If you want to avoid the crowds, visit the tree farm on Thanksgiving Day or on a weekday.

Once you buy your tree, get it into a strong stand don’t let it dry out during the holiday season. With regular watering, the tree should last through Christmas Day.

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