Eyewitness News at 6, 4-11-13

5:38 PM, Apr 11, 2013   |    comments
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Tonight...on Eyewitness News at Six...we have our eyes on a line of storms due to arrive in Georgia tonight.


Plus... The Confucius Institute opens today in Macon...we'll explain what its mission is...and how students will benefit.


< Are you Jackie Robinson?

Music: we go hard. >

42's first open screening tonight... A preview...

next on Eyewitness News at 6.

Hello, and thank you for joining us.

I'm Frank Malloy.

Our top story tonight... The weather.

We do have our eye on a severe line of storms coming our way...

It's the same system that struck Mississippi today, killing at least one person.

The video you're looking at right now is amateur video from Nuxabee County...taken as a twister moved toward a home.

And in Missouri.. The aftermath is a mess.

When a tornado struck there yesterday, emergency management says at least two dozen homes were wrecked, maybe more.

The video you're looking at is from Hazelwood.

No one seriously hurt there... But thousands sitting in the dark.

Chief meteorologist Ben Jones... In the weather center now....watching what all this means for Central Georgia.

Thanks Ben. We'll talk to you again a little later in this newscast as you keep an eye on things for us.

Stewart Brannon will serve life in prison, without parole, after being convicted today for his role in a Warner Robins murder in 2008.

Judge Katherine Lumsden sentenced Brannon in the fatal shooting of Mario Smith.

Brannon was found guilty on all counts of malice murder, felony murder, armed robbery and aggravated assault.

Houston DA George Hartwig says Brannon was the getaway driver when another man shot and killed Smith and then stole his customized car....a 1987 Monte Carlo.

Smith's body was found in a storage unit on Watson Boulevard. Hartwig says part of the reason Brannon wasn't considered for parole...was his involvement in a previous shooting in Forsyth.

Tonight in Macon...the general public will have its first opportunity to catch a glimpse of the city on the big screen.

< "are you Jackie Robinson?"

music: "we go hard."

42 tells the story of baseball legend....Jackie Robinson...and how he broke through racial barriers to make sports...and civil rights history.

The show is at ten...at the Amstar Theaters on Zebulon Road.

Unless the weather interferes...there's a chance lines could be long...so take all that into consideration as you make your evening plans.

While tonight is the first public showing... A select group has already had first dibs.

13WMAZ's Kenny Burgamy was among those who got an exclusive preview of "42" last night.

He shared on Eyewitness News Midday what he thought about the actors and how Macon figures as a backdrop for several of the movie's pivotal scenes.

<Kenny Burgamy: "It was really really fascinating to me, not only the production element of making the movie in Macon, the story line was so impressive and I got so caught up in Harrison Ford's character Branch Rickey, you forget it's Harrison Ford he did such a fantastic job. and newcomer Chadwick Boseman was very good too." (short clip from the film's trailer) "Prominent High Street in Macon, prominent downtown in front of Third and Cherry, Luther Williams Field plays a big role in the movie. The Macon folks will be very proud of the way the city is represented there as far as the production quality of the movie." >

Join us tomorrow for a special "42" edition of Eyewitness News at Five and Six in honor of the movie's nationwide opening.

Another movie crew is set to race into Macon this month.

The "need for Speed" production crew starts setting-up April 23rd.

Publicist Terrell Sandefur says filming locations will be announced next week.

Some folks on one street told Lorra Lynch Jones... Film crews told them to be ready for action.

<this is the alleged site of the filming for the movie Need for Speed. Magnolia Street. Right in the heart of downtown Macon.>

It's known for Washington Park... Historic homes... And its intown inhabitants... Including college kids like Dixon Cassara.

<people on Magnolia Street like to sit out on the porch and hangout with each other. Everybody kind of knows each other. It's a really good atmosphere.>

Cassera says in the the porch-to-porch chatter lately he heard this.

<that they're filming Need for Speed, which is what the video game was, now its going to be a movie. They're going to be doing awesome action jump scenes on my street, Im pretty stoked.>

Several other homeowners heard the buzz. It's just.. Well... Most people were at work midday... Leaving this college kid as the lone porch sitter.

<an inside source, someone who owns on Magnolia Street gave us a tip straight from the producers. He said by text, The Need for Speed will be putting in speed bumps on the 24th, filming in the afternoon of the 25th and the speed bumps come out on the 26th. He goes on to say, the speed bumps will be quite large and could damage low riding cars.>

<I think what's appealing about the street is the long hill.>

Magnolia Street hosts the Soapbox Derby each year. It's this weekend...

<whoever gets the fastest time wins>

A good test run... Cassera says... for the muscle cars coming soon.

<awesome. I Can't wait to sit on my porch and watch the cars go by.>

He'll watch for stars... Aaron Paul of Breaking Bad... And Michael Keaton...

<heard the name. Is he famous?>

Yes, Dixon.. Maybe just a little before your time from Batman... Mr. Mom and Multiplicity.

Maybe.. They'll need a rest from racing.. And come looking for a front porch to relax.

In Macon Lorra Lynch Jones 13wmaz Eyewitness News.

The Macon Film Commission estimates filming will bring 200 cast and crew members to town.

Sandefur said filming could last in Macon through May 3rd.

Between movie premieres and all the other events on tonight's docket... More crowds are also expected at the Macon City auditorium tonight

to hear Mike Huckabee speak.

The former presidential candidate and 2008 Georgia primary winner will be talking to a conservative anti-abortion group called Caring Solutions, but the 7 p.m. Event is open to the public for an entry cost of 25 dollars.

Huckabee is also a former Arkansas governor and talk show host as well as an ordained Baptist minister.

Huckabee may have hung up his candidate hat for now...but a retired major from the Bibb Sheriff's Office.... Wants a go at politics.

Scotty Shepherd plans to run for the district seven seat in the Macon-Bibb consolidated government.

Shepherd says the new commission's biggest battle will be over the budget... Something he says he has a lot of experience handling.

<over half of the sheriff's budget was my responsibility before I retired, and so i've got experience in finance and handling big budgets, and I've got experience dealing with all types of people from the courts, to attorneys, to just regular folks>

District Seven covers parts of south Bibb.

Shepherd will run against Mike Cranford.

There's still more to come on Eyewitness news at six....including history...and southern style by the bite.

What's really amazing to me I counted the other day I think there is right this second 148 recipes from scratch coming out the kitchen. >

To Roberta...where we learn the backstory behind this new restaurant and coffee spot.

How about a broccoli and cheddar soup...an espresso...and a side of history???

Well that's the idea behind Champion's...a new restaurant that opened in Roberta this week.

It's in the historical home of woman who the town was named after.

The owners teamed up with one of the creators of Macon's Joshua Cup to create this new eatery.

Austin Lewis tells us more.

Scott Long...who used to own Joshua's Cup...piles on the broccoli...that goes into the four cheese broccoli soup.

Long says he and other chefs are cooking up home-cooked dishes at Champion's... Roberta's newest restaurant

<Scott Long, General Manager and Head Chef: What's really amazing to me I counted the other day I think there is right this second 148 recipes from scratch coming out the kitchen. >

Fresh Peach muffins...and coffee cake come out of the kitchen...along with a full coffee bar.

But Champion's all started with an idea...to purchase this little plot of history.

<Kathleen Cook, Owner: It is the home of Roberta Champion for whom the town of Roberta was named and as a historical landmark I hated to see what could happen to it. >

So Kathleen Cook says she thought why not share history and food.

<Scott Long, General Manager and Head Chef: They had a good idea and they said can you and I said yes. And we started playing. >

That history surrounds Champion's..from the restored fireplace...and hardwood floors of Roberta's home.

And even the menu...with dishes named after Crawford's historical figures.

<Scott Long, General Manager and Head Chef: We're drawing all that stuff together for a healthier thing but you could get the big cheesy sandwiches if you want that to. >

Long says while Champion's is different from the Joshua Cup..

<Scott Long, General Manager and Head Chef: There was a different clientele downtown macon was the lawyers the attorneys the bussiness folks, two or three different varities of college kids so whatever was trendy or jett-settuy you can get by with >

people who loved Macon's hot Java spot...will also love Champions.

<Scott Long, General Manager and Head Chef: Quality levels are the same...this is something that may be a little bit of a kissing cousin of it but this is all Roberta


Austin Lewis 13WMAZ eyewitness news.

Champion's opened this past Monday..

It's hours of operation are from 7am to 5pm.

The present, also about to meet the past in one Macon home

Historic Macon and several interior decorators will open a house on Georgia Avenue next week,

After rehabilitation on the home is complete.

The three story home on Georgia Avenue dates back to the 1890's,

And is being restored by 16 expert decorators.

Tours will showcase the old and the new...

As visitors will have the opportunity to admire old architecture, and modern design...

<it's a wonderful chance for people interested in preservation and also people interested in old homes to see what an old home can really look like after rehabilitation. How you can have an old home like this one from circa 1890's and have it functional for modern day use and beautiful as well.>

Tours will begin next Thursday, April 18th. And run through Sunday, April 28th.

For more information about the tour, check out this story on 13 WMAZ dot com

Macon's Russell Henley held his own today during the opening round of the Masters..

Henley started with two bogey's but rallied to post an even par round of 72..He had three birdies and three bogeys on his round..Henley is playing in his first Masters..He currently trails Marc Leishmann, Dustin Johnson and Sergio Garcia by six shots with several players still out on the course..Pre-tournament favorite Tiger Woods shot a two under par 70..

Today's 13wmaz-dot-com webpoll question asks: Who will win the Masters?

So far, 34 percent say Tiger Woods will get the green jacket, 17 percent think Phil Mickelson will, 9 percent are rooting for native son Russell Henley.. and 40 percent think somebody else will win.

To vote now... Visit 13WMAZ.com.

Look for the question on the right side of the homepage.

A tornado injured at least three people and caused significant damage in northern Arkansas yesterday.

The severe weather has continued today in the area.

According to the National Weather Service, the twister touched down in Van Buren County.

Officials say it has destroyed a church and several homes.

Cars and trucks were also damaged after being overturned by the storm.

There's a new program at Wesleyan College...and it has to do with China. Today was the grand opening of the Confucius Institute.

Mayor Robert Reichert and representatives from China came to celebrate. After the dedication ceremony...students from China hosted a music and dance performance showcasing the country's rich culture. And there are big plans for the future of this program...

<we will offer chinese language and culture classes. We'll celebrate chinese holidays. We will open our china gallery.

I've heard there are some americans who've adopted some chinese orphans. It would be great for chinese children to learn about the language and culture>

The Confucius Institute has been in the works since last July.


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