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DAILY NEWS UPDATES & BLOGS
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    HF)--An electric short is believed responsible fire that caused an estimated $10,000 in damage to an Enid home Monday. Fire Marshal Ken Helms said firefighters responded to the blaze at 823 W. Oak around 3:45 Monday afternoon. No injuries were reported. The cause of the fire is still under investigation, but Helms said officials suspect it started from an electrical problem involving an air conditioning unit on the exterior of the building. The fire was limited to a back bedroom and some exterior of the house.

     

                                               --00--  26  July  17   5p

     

    CM)—An Enid man was sentenced Monday to 18 years in prison after pleading guilty to a felony count of lewd acts with a child under 16. 33 year-old Samuel Wade Cody Athens originally was charged in July 2016 with child sexual abuse. The charge accused him of having sex with a 7-year-old girl at an Enid residence. Athens entered his plea of guilty to the amended charge and was ordered to serve 18 years in department of corrections custody, with credit for time served; have post imprisonment supervision; register as a sex offender upon his release; and pay court and other costs.

     

                                               --00--  26  July  17   5p

     

    DD)--Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin says a federal disaster declaration has been approved for 16 counties affected by storms and tornadoes in mid-May. Fallin said Wednesday that the Federal Emergency Management Agency has approved a declaration including Alfalfa County here in northcentral Oklahoma. Approval means federal funding is available to assist cities, counties, rural electric cooperatives and the state with infrastructure repairs and costs associated with responding to the storms. The storms from May 16-20 caused an estimated $6.5 million in damage and produced flooding, power outages, three EF2 tornadoes with wind speed of up 135 mph and are blamed for one death. 

     

                                               --00--  26  July  17   5p

     

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — In an attempt to reduce its prison population, the Oklahoma Department of Corrections is developing a program that would release low-risk offenders into the community under supervision. The Tulsa World reports the Board of Corrections discussed the program Tuesday at its monthly meeting. To be considered for the program, offenders can't be convicted of violent or sex offenses. They would also need to be free of felony domestic violence convictions and be within 18 months of a projected release date. Department of Corrections Director Joe Allbaugh says the state law empowers the department to look at different ways to reduce the prison population. Department of Corrections spokesman Mark Myers says the state institutions' current population is at 108 percent capacity.

     

                                               --00--  26  July  17   5p

     

    FF)—A number of filmmakers, actors, makeup artists and others will be in Enid for the fourth annual FLY Film Festival August 4-6 in downtown. Friday the 4th will be the start of the event, with a kickoff party at Five80 Coffeehouse that is free to the public, starting at noon. Attendees will be able to get lunch, hear about the movies that will be shown and buy tickets. Approximately 35 independent films will be shown at the Enid Symphony Orchestra, 301 W Broadway Ave, and genres of the festival are varied. Chris Sneed, FLY Film Festival director, said the films shown at the festival will be relatable for anyone attending. Saturday will include script readings from the nominated scripts, a family friendly block of films will be shown, there will be demonstrations of fight choreography and a Q&A panel, and a demonstration of special effects makeup for film. The day will finish with a VIP networking party at which attendees will have the chance to discuss film projects.. Sunday will be a celebration and awards ceremony from 1:00-2:00 p.m. There will be live music, and two of the winning films will be shown starting at 3:00. Event passes vary in price and can be purchased at the door or online. Access to one day of the event is $10, two days for $20. A three-day pass, which includes all movies, workshops and the award celebration is $25. There also will be a VIP pass for $40 that includes festival merchandise and access to the after-party. Information on the movies to be shown, the festival schedule and event passes available to purchase can be found at flyfilmfestival.org.

     

                                               --00--  26  July  17   5p

     

    SP)--The City of Enid Parks and Recreation department is seeking input from the community on the possibility of making improvements to the existing skate park. There will be a public input meeting at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday in Council Chambers of the City Administration Building located at 401 W. Owen K. Garriott Road. The public is invited and encouraged to attend.

                                               --00--  26  July  17   7a

     

    DC)--Senior Life Network and AARP are sponsoring a smart driver course at 9:00 a.m. Thursday at the space next to Senior Life Network inside Oakwood Mall. The course will last until about 3:00 p.m., with a break for lunch, and is open to the public. This class is for drivers over 50 and is led by Kevin Hackett, an AARP trained volunteer, using workbooks and videos. There is no written test and no driving. Some insurance companies offer discounts for completing this course, but participants must check with their agents to see what discounts are available. Those attending are asked to bring a valid driver’s license and AARP card, if a member. The cost for the course is $15 for AARP members and $20 for non-members. Participants will receive a participant manual as part of the course. Lunch will be on your own. Contact Senior Life Network at (580) 234-6060 or Hackett at (405) 714-1002 to sign up for the course.

     

                                               --00--  26  July  17   7a

     

    GB)--Groundbreaking for the Prairie Flats Apartments project by Excel Development Group will be Aug. 8. Project plans have the development located on the plot of land between South 7th and South 8th, along East Oklahoma. The development will include two apartment buildings with a total of 36 affordable units. Anticipated completion for all construction on the $5.3 million project is August 2018, with the first occupants moving in by May 2018. Outdoor amenities will include a playground and a covered seating area. A community building will include a fitness area, computer lab and storm shelter.  Prairie Flat Apartments will be available to all income-qualified households, according to Excel Development Group. Two-bedroom units will rent for around $500 to $550 a month, and three-bedrooms for $575 to $625 a month. Groundbreaking of the apartments will be 2 p.m. Aug. 8 at 700 E. Oklahoma. Reservations can be made until Aug. 1 to McCabe at jennifer@exceldg.com or (405) 863-4237. 

     

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    OR)--The Oak Ridge Boys will perform in Enid as part of the country group’s Celebration Tour at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 4 at the Central National Bank Center. The concert will feature classic gospel, country and patriotic music. For information on tickets contact the CNBC box office, 301 S. Independence or at (580) 616-7380 or cnbcenter.com/theoakridgeboystour. The Oak Ridge Boys' official website is http://oakridgeboys.com/http://oakridgeboys.com.

     

     

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    SS)--During the long, dog days of summer, Cherokee Strip Regional Heritage Center has scheduled Summer Saturdays in Humphrey Heritage Village.  Historic homesteading activities will take place 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. each Saturday from June through August. Participants will enjoy refreshments made with ingredients straight from the Heritage Center’s herb garden while they play lawn games, bundle herbs and tend to a variety of indoor chores at the Glidewell House. The Summer Saturday activities are free with admission to the museum. Admission for adults is $6 and $3 for children. Those 5 years and under are free. For more information on Summer Saturdays and other CSRHC programs, call the Heritage Center at (580) 237-1907 or go online to www.csrhc.org. Cherokee Strip Regional Heritage Center is located at 507 S. 4th.

     

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