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Carter Enterprises is Business of the Month, Helping Hand for Communities

Carter Enterprises has been selected as Fairfield Chamber of Commerce’s Business of the month for December. Founded in 1973 by James Otis Carter (23-years-old at the time), the business began with the opening of Dairy Palace in Madisonville, Texas. Later, the name was changed to Texas Burger, and thus the famous small-town restaurant chain was born. Carter’s goal was to serve fresh, never frozen hamburgers with extraordinary customer service. Very quickly, Texas Burger in Madisonville became a popular stopping point for travelers and locals alike to enjoy a great meal. Since then, Texas Burger has expanded throughout East Texas with eleven locations including Fairfield. Carter Enterprises expanded further by taking ownership of various locations of Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, Church’s, Subway, Spoons Yogurt, and Dickey’s Barbecue Pit restaurants. Mr. Carter, a Class of 1967 graduate of Madisonville High School, has chosen to keep his businesses within a 100 mile radius of Madisonville where possible, and to stay in small towns. “Being raised in a small town, I tend to understand things better,” Mr. Carter explains. “I see much more camaraderie here than in large cities. People come together to support one another in times of need.” Cater Enterprises has been gracious in lending a helping hand to one of Fairfield’s own local families by having special days dedicated to ‘Team Lexie.’ Alexis Neptune has been fighting cancer for a...

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Texas Farm Credit Gives Back During Holidays

With their toy drive collection are the Texas Farm Credit Fairfield office staff (above), including (l-r):  Danny Wren, JP Clopton, Joni Woodall and Lisa Nichols. Texas Farm Credit staff rose to the occasion when its diversity and inclusion council sponsored a toy drive Nov. 7 through Dec. 19. Each of the lending cooperative’s 20 branches selected a charity and collected more than 300 toys and gifts, including coats, for local children and families in their communities. Charities included Salvation Army Angel Tree, Blue Santa, Toys for Tots, Stuff the Stockings Drive, Filly the Trolley Toy Drive and The Children’s Center Inc. “Part of our mission at Texas Farm Credit is to give back to our communities, and this time of year is no exception,” said Mark Miller, Texas Farm Credit chief executive officer. “Our employees feel connected to something larger than themselves and always rally around to help those in need.” Texas Farm Credit finances agricultural operations, agribusinesses and rural real estate. Headquartered in Robstown, it serves 100 Texas counties and has lending offices in Athens, Bandera, Beaumont, Bonham, Brenham, Clarksville, Fairfield, Gainesville, Hebbronville, Nacogdoches, Paris, Pleasanton, Raymondville, Robstown, San Antonio, Sulphur Springs, The Woodlands, Tyler, Uvalde and Weslaco. It is part of the nationwide Farm Credit System, a network of rural financing cooperatives established in...

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Winners of the Youth Arts Contest Announced

  AUSTIN— The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s Arts in the Parks program has announced the winners of the Texas State Parks Youth Arts Contest, which ran from May 1 to Nov. 1. TPWD will showcase the winning art pieces in the 2017 calendar and on the Arts in the Parks webpage. The contest is part of a larger national competition organized by the “Get to Know” organization, which encourages kids to get outside and create art. Youths were encouraged to share their outdoor experiences using art, writing, photography, video and music. Submissions were entered in both the state and national Get to Know Contests. Texas judges chose winners from three age categories: 14-19, 10-13 and under 10. The grand prize winner is Grand Prairie native Kailee Mathison, 17, for her entry “Habitat.” The artwork was inspired by the diverse landscape of Palo Duro Canyon State Park. This entry will be the cover image of the calendar. Marlyss Brightwell, 15, from Mesquite won first prize in the age 14-19 category for her photograph titled “The Great Blue Sea.” The photo shows a great blue heron standing on the beach at Galveston Island State Park. This image will be used as the January page in the calendar. The winner of the 10-13 age group is Joy C., 13, from San Antonio for her photo titled “My blue-eyed brother.” The photo...

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Social Security: With the New Year Comes New Changes

Monthly Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits will see a slight increase in 2017. Some other adjustments that take effect in January of each year are based on the increase in average wages. Based on that increase, the maximum amount of earnings subject to the Social Security tax (taxable maximum) will increase to $127,200 from $118,500. Of the estimated 173 million workers who will pay Social Security taxes in 2017, about 12 million will pay more because of the increase in the taxable maximum. Thresholds for benefits will change slightly next year including the Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA), SSI Federal Payment Standard, and SSI Student Exclusion. Information about Medicare changes for 2017 are available at www.Medicare.gov. For some beneficiaries, their Social Security increase may be partially or completely offset by increases in Medicare premiums. The Social Security Act provides for how the Cost of Living Adjustment is calculated. To read more, please visit www.socialsecurity.gov/cola. Learn more about the resulting changes at our factsheet on the subject:...

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In the Treehouse: Forced to Relax

Sometimes we are in such a hurry, and moving at such a fast pace we forget how to unplug and relax. But this past weekend sure did the trick for me. I was cleaning out pig stalls, and within about 20 minutes I saw the front roll in, and the temperature, I swear, dropped about 20 degrees in 15 minutes. It was the most amazing thing I have ever seen or felt. So, I finished up my mom duties to all the piggies, and headed home to try and warm up. And the next day, we were forced to stay inside all curled up and comfy. Although we did have to go and feed the pigs again, and I finished what I had started with cleaning all their stalls out. But other than that, it made me stop, slow down, catch up on a few things around the house, but for the most part I was able to just relax. In fact, it was so nice that I was able to play a game of checkers with my boys. I didn’t care who was calling, who was texting, what my calendar said I needed to do for the next work week, I just was able to relax. All due to Mother Nature. When you can’t go outside and do yard work, and you really don’t want to bundle everyone...

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