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Posted: April 3, 2011 12:00 a.m.

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Social Circle to honor guiding lights

Social Circle celebrates its Guiding Lights with a dinner at 6:30 p.m. Sunday at the Blue Willow Inn.

The Guiding Lights Program, part of Social Circle Better Hometown, will honor 10 people for their contributions to the community: John T. Burks, Grady P. Lemonds, Anne S. Peppers, Mabel and Bob Standridge, David C. and Betty Jo Terry, Billie Van Dyke and the late Louis Van Dyke, and Mary Jo Dally Whitley.

The Standridges were nominated for their work with Standridge Color, the A.P. Henderson Foundation, the Social Circle Theater, the Christian Learning Center, the Mabel Standridge Learning Center and the Social Circle United Methodist Church.

David Terry served as a city council member and participated in numerous community activities, while Betty Jo Terry was nominated for her work with her church, the Daughters of the American Revolution, the library and the Historic Preservation Society of Social Circle.

Peppers was the longtime city clerk and is on the city council. She also volunteers with the Better Hometown Heritage Center and serves as host for the monthly merchant coffee.

Lemonds began his electrical service business in Social Circle in 1971, and donated his time to help the local schools, according to his nomination form. He served 37 years on the city council and is a member of the Social Circle Development Authority and the Multi-County Development Authority. A Rotary Club member, he served as president of the local chapter in 1997-1998.

The Van Dykes opened the Blue Willow in 1991, and developed the business into a landmark that attracts patrons from around the world. Louis Van Dyke, who died in November, had served several years as chairman of Better Hometown and was active in the Walton County Chamber of Commerce.

Dr. Burks served as superintendent of Social Circle schools for 18 years, implementing numerous innovative programs and enhancing the school system's reputation, according to the nomination form. He also was active in First Baptist Church of Social Circle and in the Rotary Club.

Whitley was responsible for several renovations and restorations of historic structures in the community, including the circa 1849 home of her great-grandfather, which she had moved to H.D. Atha Road.

She was involved with the Social Circle Garden Club and the Historical Preservation Society of Social Circle and was a financial supporter of te Boys & Girls Club of Social Circle.

Street lights will be dedicated in honor of their work for the community, with plaques placed on each light to denote their contributions.


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