Thumbs of the Week: The rodeo returns to Wilson County

Staff Reports • Updated Jun 16, 2017 at 2:00 PM

Thumbs up to the National Junior High Finals Rodeo, which will be June 18-24 in Wilson County, the second time ever for the National High School Rodeo Association to bring its annual event east of the Mississippi River. It is also the second time the event will be held at the James E. Ward Agricultural Center in Lebanon. The opening ceremony for the National Junior High Rodeo Finals will be Sunday at 7 p.m. For more information on the event or to purchase tickets, visit nhsra.com/junior-high-division. 


Thumbs up to Wilson Habitat for Humanity, which will help women build sponsors celebrate a new Habitat for Humanity home for a family of five – Ron and Leigh Ann Ankney and their three boys – at a home dedication ceremony Sunday at 1 p.m., according to Wilson Habitat director Tory Tredway. Ron and Leigh Anne Ankney are the parents of three boys who range from 10 months old to 11 years old. The couple grew up in Minnesota then moved the family to Middle Tennessee four years ago after Ron Ankney lost his job due to downsizing. They had to move in with Ron Ankney’s parents in Mt. Juliet until they could find work and save up enough money to move into a handicapped-accessible apartment for their special needs son. Ron Ankney works for Courier Printing in Smyrna, and Leigh Anne Ankney works at the Safe Haven Family Shelter in Nashville. One of Ron Ankney’s coworkers suggested they look at Habitat for Humanity’s homeownership program, so they applied and qualified. Women build sponsors include Providence United Methodist Church, Publix Super Markets Charities, Custom Packaging, Modern Woodmen of America, Larry Powell Builders, Lebanon Breakfast Rotary Club, Linda Rising, Healthy Bones Chiropractic, Re-Max Exceptional Properties, Wilson Bank & Trust and the Wilson County Whip Crackin’ Rodeo.


Thumbs up to the Nashville Symphony for its performance Tuesday at the 27th annual Symphony on the Lawn, which also included performances by the Suzuki players, Ukuleles and the Dudes and the Bert Coble singers. Families gathered around Cumberland University Memorial Lawn and enjoyed the music with picnics, wine and some even brought their dogs. The Nashville symphony, conducted by Rei Hotoda, brought their full 82-piece orchestra. They played nine pieces of music covering everything from Beethoven to John Williams. The grand finale was Raiders March from Indiana Jones: Raiders of the Lost Ark. The musical “petting zoo” was back again and a huge hit for the younger crowd. Children were given the chance to grab an instrument and try it out for themselves with some volunteer assistance. 


Thumbs up to Thorne’s Excavating Co., which completed roadwork Tuesday on North Castle Heights Avenue that caused the street to be closed from West Main Street to McFadden Court. The road was closed while workers installed a sewer line to the new Wilson Bank & Trust operations center currently under construction. Last week, officials reported the closure could take up to four days, and announced the road would be closed Tuesday through Friday.

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