GOOD EVENING, AND THANKS FOR JOINING US... I'M AMY AUBERT.
THIS IS EYEWITNESS NEWS AT 11.
SEVERE WEATHER IS BEARING DOWN ON THE NATION'S MIDSECTION - POTENTIALLY AFFECTING MILLIONS OF AMERICANS.
MORE THAN A DOZEN POSSIBLE TORNADOS TOUCHED DOWN - WITH CONFIRMED TWISTERS IN OKLAHOMA... AND IT'S NOT OVER YET.
AS INES FERRE REPORTS... FORECASTERS ARE TELLING PEOPLE TO STAY INFORMED... AND BE READY TO ACT.
((nats)) Bouse Junction, OK
"We have a large tornado in contact with the ground..."
THE PLAINS STATES ARE BEARING THE BRUNT OF A POWERFUL STORM SYTEM..
THE STORM PREDICTION CENTER IN NORMAN, OKLAHOMA, SAYS IT COULD BE A "HIGH-END, LIFE-THREATENING EVENT" -- POTENTIALLY AFFECTING FIVE AND A HALF MILLION AMERICANS THIS WEEKEND --- FROM TEXAS TO MINNESOTA.
((SOT)) Voice of: Bill Bunting, Chief of Operations at the Storm Prediction Center
"This is a multiday event, it's now underway and potentially a very serious situation. "
((NARR-2)) (cover with SATU176 storm chaser vo)
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE CONFIRMS AT LEAST TWO TORNADOS TOUCHED DOWN IN OKLAHOMA SATURDAY .
TWO BARNS ON JANA HAGER'S PROPERTY WERE DESTROYED . BUT SHE SAYS THE DAMAGE COULD HAVE BEEN MUCH WORSE.
((sot)) Jana Hager/Sand Springs, OK Resident
"We have the gazebo and the fence right there, otherwise it would've went through our house."
((NATS)) Norman, OK ***Mandatory Courtesy: Allison Harris***
"that's coming straight for us. Look at the debris!"
A TWISTER TOUCHED DOWN FRIDAY NEAR THE UNIVERISTY OF OKLAHOMA.
THE DAMAGE WAS FAIRLY MINIMAL AND ONLY MINOR INJURIES WERE REPORTED.
FORECASTERS ARE URGING PEOPLE TO BE VIGILANT:
((SOT)) Voice of: Bill Bunting, Chief of Operations at the Storm Prediction Center
Make sure you have your plan, you've talked it over with your family. /// Monitor the forecast constantly have that radio handy and be ready to act.
((SOT)) FROM EVE NEWS DEAN REYNOLDS
(KAREN BAKER): we do have a closet ready and some supplies in there so we're a little bit ready just in case. (chuckles)
(JIM BAKER): and a prayer book.
((NARR-4)) Lancaster TX on April 3, 2012///Can use for the next 30 days///Mandatory courtesy "Severe Studios"
IT HAS BEEN AN UNUSUALLY ACTIVE TORNADO SEASON SO FAR... THIS MARCH BEING THE FOURTH DEADLIEST ON RECORD.
CNN IS REPORTING THAT A POSSIBLE TORNADO STRUCK A HOSPITAL IN CRESTON IOWA.
THEY SAY A SEARCH AND RESCUE OPERATION IS UNDER WAY.
IN NEBRASKA... LARGE HAIL DAMAGED SEVERAL HOMES AND CARS.
MUSIC LOVERS SHOULD BE JUST PACKING UP AND GETTING READY TO HEAD HOME AFTER A DAY LONG BEARSTOCK EVENT.
**PAUSE 5 SEC NATS**
THOUSANDS SWARMED TATNALL SQUARE PARK TODAY... TO LISTEN TO NON-STOP MUSIC.
MERCER UNIVERSITY'S BEARSTOCK 20-12 STARTED AT 1 O'CLOCK... AND WRAPPED UP AT 11.
14 BANDS FILLED THOSE TEN HOURS... WITH SOME OF THEIR GREATEST HITS.... AND KEPT PEOPLE DANCING... ALL DAY LONG.
THE LINEUP INCLUDED SOME BIG NAMES LIKE YELLOW CARD..... AND FAR EAST MOVEMENT AND LOCAL GROUPS LIKE 'THE KEY' AND JUBEE AND THE MORNING AFTER.
Lamareshia Murphy, Macon: "I think this is a really positive look for Macon, Georgia. In spite of all the negative that may occur or whatnot, I think it's a good look to bring out family, friends, and just to get us all involved in the community in a good way."
BEARSTOCK WASN'T THE ONLY EVENT DRAWING CROWDS TODAY.
HUNDREDS FLOCKED TO DOWNTOWN PERRY... FOR THE ANNUAL DOGWOOD FESTIVAL .
Nats of Event( 5 seconds)
THE EVENT KICKED OFF ITS 24TH YEAR CELEBRATION... THIS MORNING.
FOLKS SAY THE FESTIVAL HAD SOMETHING FOR JUST ABOUT EVERYONE TO ENJOY.
KIDS GOT THE CHANCE TO CREATE ARTS AND CRAFTS... ENJOY RIDES AND ENTERTAINMENT... AND OF COURSE... CHOW DOWN ON SOME FAIR FOOD SWEETS.
Kayleigh Harkins, Perry "Love It, There's lots of vendors out here. I want to go do some shopping and do some more eating, get a fried candy bar or two"
Deborah Molton, Macon "I like the small town atmosphere and it's really friendly out here and I like looking at the different arts and crafts"
THE FESTIVAL GOT STARTED THIS MORNING WITH A PANCAKE BREAKFAST.
THIS YEARS ORGANIZERS ADDED TROLLEYS.. TO ELIMINATE PARKING ISSUES.
THE FUN CONTINUES TOMORROW FROM NOON UNTIL 5 P-M.
BEST BUY ANNOUNCED THE LOCATIONS OF 50 STORES THEY PLAN TO CLOSE THIS YEAR... AND TWO OF THEM ARE IN GEORGIA.
LAST MONTH THE STRUGGLING ELECTRONICS CHAIN SAID THEY PLAN TO CLOSE STORES... CUT CORPORATE JOBS.. AND TRIM 800 MILLION DOLLARS IN COSTS.
THE TWO GEORGIA FRANCHISES ARE IN THE ATLANTA AREA.. ONE IN FAYETTEVILLE.. THE OTHER IN LOGANVILLE.
MOST OF THE STORES WILL CLOSE BY MAY 12TH.. THE OTHERS... LATER THIS SUMMER.
BEST BUY SAYS IT WILL TRY TO FIND OTHER JOBS IN THE COMPANY FOR THE WORKERS.
THE CITY OF FORT VALLEY HAS SOME BIG PLANS... TO DRAW ATTENTION TO SOME HISTORIC BUILDINGS.
THEY NOW OWN ALL THREE TRAIN BUILDINGS IN THE CITY.
THAT'S THANKS TO A LOCAL WOMAN... AND A BIG DONATION.
AUSTIN LEWIS HAS THE STORY.
<< FOR RENEE CAIRA... WALKING THROUGH THE PASSENGER DEPOT BUILDING... BRINGS BACK THE MEMORIES OF THE FIRST TIME SHE AND HER HUSBAND... SET FOOT HERE.
Renee Caira, Centerville: He took one walk through and he looked and he looked at it from every angle and he said I think I'd like to own a train depot and he said I think we can do a lot with this building.
AND THEY DID.
Renee Caira, Centerville: we ended up hiring a construction crew and we did a complete remodel on the building cause he wanted to protect and I guess protect the historical value of the building.
IT'S WHERE THEY RAN THEIR HOME FURNITURE STORE... AND LATER A LITTLE CAFE.
IN 2009... HER HUSBAND... STEVEN CAIRA... DIED FROM CANCER... AT AGE 52. HIS DEATH SPARKED QUESTIONS... ABOUT WHAT TO DO WITH THE BUILDING.
Renee Caira, Centerville: I went to bed that night, said a little prayer and the next morning I woke up and said you know the train depot needs to be completely at home in Fort Valley.
SHE DONATED THE BUILDING TO THE CITY... GIVING FORT VALLEY OWNERSHIP OF ALL THREE HISTORIC TRAIN BUILDINGS IN TOWN.
FOLKS WITH FORT VALLEY MAIN STREET SAY THEY ARE PLANNING TO HAVE AN AGRICULTURAL AND TRANSPORTATION MUSEUM IN THE FREIGHT BUILDING.
AND THE PASSENGER DEPOT WOULD BE PART OF THAT EXHIBIT.
Kathie Lambert, Fort Valley Main Street: One was because when Renee and Steve owned it part of it was a railroad cafe, it would make a wonderful railroad cafe, gift shop for the museum, maybe another small area for railroad club.
CAIRA SAYS SHE THINKS HER HUSBAND WOULD BE GLAD TO KNOW THAT HE'S CONTRIBUTING TO SOMETHING THAT CELEBRATES THIS HISTORIC BUILDING.
Renee Caira, Centerville: I think he is smiling down and looking at it, I think he really is.
AUSTIN LEWIS 13WMAZ EYEWITNESS NEWS.
THE BUILDING WAS APPRAISED AT 187-THOUSAND DOLLARS.
THERE WILL BE A RECEPTION ON MONDAY AT THE PASSENGER DEPOT IN RENEE AND STEVE'S HONOR.
FORMER VICE PRESIDENT DICK CHENEY SPOKE AT HIS FIRST EVENT TODAY... SINCE GETTING A NEW HEART 3 WEEKS AGO.
THE CROWD OF MORE THAN 300 GAVE THE FORMER VICE PRESIDENT AND HIS DAUGHTER A STANDING OVATION.
CHENEY WALKED WITHOUT ASSISTANCE AND SPOKE FOR AN HOUR AND 15 MINUTES.
HE EVEN TOOK SOME TIME OUT TO TALK ABOUT THIS YEAR'S PRIMARY RACES.
DOCTORS ORGINALLY CANCELLED CHENEY'S TRIP... AFTER HIS TRANSPLANR IN MARCH.. BUT HE RECEIVED A LAST-MINUTE MEDICAL CLEARANCE TO GO.
U-G-A'S NEWEST MASCOT COULD BE PACING THE SIDELINES OF SANFORD STADIUM AS EARLY AS THIS FALL.
SONNY SILER... SAYS THEY HOPE TO PRESENT THE DOG AT THE FIRST HOME GAME.
SILER'S FAMILY HAS PROVIDED THE ENGLISH BULLDOGS FOR THE SCHOOL SINCE THE 50'S.
HE SAYS THE FAMILY HAS TWO PUPPIES THAT ARE IN DIRECT LINE... BUT ISN'T SURE WHICH WILL BE THE LUCKY POOCH.
OFFICIALS EXPECT A DECISION BY AUGUST... WHEN THE DOGS WILL TURN ONE-YEAR-OLD.. GUARANTEEING THEY ARE BIG ENOUGH.
UGA 8 DIED IN FEBRUARY OF 20-11... HE SERVED AS MASCOT FOR ONLY SIX GAMES.
PEOPLE IN GRAY TOOK ADVANTAGE TOOK OF TODAY'S GREAT WEATHER... AND HIT THE STREETS FOR THE TOWN'S SECOND SATURDAY EVENT.
Nats of Event (5 seconds)
KIDS ENJOYED TRAIN RIDES AND DANCE TIME WITH A ZUMBA INSTRUCTOR AT THE DOWNTOWN EVENT.
MANY LOCAL SHOPS WERE OPEN TO THE PUBLIC AND VENDORS LINED THE STREETS.
ADULTS GOT A CHANCE TO MEET AUTHOR CLIFF CHANDLER AND HEAR MUSIC FROM JOEY STUCKEY ALL IN HOPES TO PROMOTE THE DOWNTOWN AREA AND SHOPPING LOCALLY.
Ami Phillips, Gray "I remember being a child here and knowing the jewerly store was where the bank is and other stores that are around here, so it's wonderful memories but I absolutely love being able to contribute to the success that we are having"
THE CITY WILL HOLD ANOTHER SECOND SATURDAY EVENT ON MAY 12TH.
PEOPLE IN FORT VALLEY HIT THE TRAILS... AND SADDLED UP... FOR A GOOD CAUSE.
FORT VALLEY UNIVERSITY HELD THE EVENT... AIMED AT RAISING MONEY... FOR ST. JUDE'S CHILDREN'S RESEARCH HOSPITAL IN MEMPHIS.
KIDS GOT THE CHANCE TO TAKE PONY RIDES... CHOW DOWN ON SOME GOOD EATS... AND RACE ACROSS THE FIELD... IN A BARREL RACE.
THE STUDENT EQUESTRIAN AND ANIMAL SCIENCE CLUBS AT FORT VALLEY UNIVERSITY... HELD THE EVENT... AND CHARGED BETWEEN ONE BUCK TO 15 DOLLARS FOR THE ACTIVITIES.
Stephanie Bonnell, Participant: "I think its important that we continue doing research for cancer and helping others just in general. So anytime that I can do a charity event, that's a bonus for me."
Linda McKinnney, Fort Valley: "It's just a different way to see the scenery, to see the sights, go into the woods, and enjoy the commrodary."
ST. JUDE'S HOSPITAL TREATS CHILDREN WITH CANCER AND OTHER DIESEASES... AND IS RECOGNIZED FOR THEIR CANCER RESEARCH.