Willing Workers of White Hall’s Extension Homemakers Club met Jan. 23 in the meeting room of the White Hall Library for their regular January meeting.

President  Karen Needler introduced guest Rosemary Withers,  Community Health Promotion Specialist for the Department of Health. She presented a program on “Poison Control in Action.” 

Withers discussed the different kinds of poisons.  Some of the information she presented included that more adults than children are dying from medicine poisoning; it is important to read labels for medicine and household products; wear gloves and face masks when using pesticides and do not mix bleach with other products.  In 2014, thirty-one died from poisonings in Southeast Arkansas.  Over  200 in the state. If you have questions about poison, call 1-800-222-1222,   

Needler welcomed everyone.  Donna Stephenson read the Thought of the Month “Tho no one can go back and make a new start, anyone can start from now and make a new ending.” (Carl Bard)   Vice President Sarah Payton led members in the Homemaker’s Creed.  Cheri Aronowitz read the Handy Hint “Make sure all family members know the name of the county or parish where you live or are traveling because tornado watches and warnings are issued for counties or parishes, not individual towns or cities.”  Elizabeth Wall read the Inspiration from Psalms 107:29.  In the absence of Secretary Peggie Barbaree,  Jo Ann Carr called the roll.   Members and guests answered by telling if they have a weather radio.  Members present were:  Aronowitz, Needler, Payton, Marnette Reed,  Wall, Dee Kindrick, Catherine Atkinson, Stephenson and Carr.  Guests were Withers and Mary Ann Kizer, Jefferson County Family and Consumer Sciences Agent.  

Stephenson presented the club program on “Tornado Preparedness”. She gave everyone a map of the state showing the location of the counties.  She explained the difference between a Tornado Watch and a Tornado Warning.  WATCHES are issued by the Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma when tornadoes are possible in the area and the conditions or the weather is right for a tornado to occur.  A watch can cover several states and lasts for several hours.  Stay tuned to the radio or television news.  WARNINGS are issued by the local National Weather Service Forecast Offices, such as the one in Little Rock, when a tornado is either on the ground or has been detected by Doppler radar.  A warning is for a small area and usually lasts for 30 minutes to an hour.  Seek shelter immediately.  She discussed how the amount of damage to structures and the quality of constructions are used to determine if the tornado was a F1 (weak), F2 (strong), etc. up to F 5 (Incredible).  A handout given to all present showed the Total Number of Tornadoes, Deaths and Injuries in Each County in Arkansas from 1950 - 2016 (adopted from National Weather Service Records).  She pointed out Jefferson County showed 31 tornadoes, 1 death and 15 injuries. She provided information on what you can do before the storm, what to do if a tornado warning is issued, tornado safety locations, among other things.  If you would like additional information or a copy of the handout, please contact Mary Ann Kizer at the Jefferson County Extension Office at 870-534-1033.

Carr reported for Barbaree, Community Service Chairman, that dolls are being worked on for Arkansas Children’s Hospital.  Carr showed some baby Christmas knitted caps she is working on and ask members that make the caps to make some for next Christmas. Kindrick passed on an appreciation from a friend whose child had received a cap from Arkansas Children’s Hospital on a recent visit there.  

Atkinson, Nursing Home Project Chairman, reported she will be putting out Valentine decorations on the doors of the patients soon.

Payton, Education Fellowship Chairman, is checking on a Tour of Homes, sponsored by Trinity Church.  

Kindrick, Education History Chairman, reported on the history of White Hall School District.   White Hall School was first started in the late 1800’s in a small one room building that served as a church. It was located by the cemetery near where the White Hall Methodist Church now stands.  The teacher was Charlie Monk and he rode to school on a horse.  In early 1900 the school was moved to the Dollarway Road location that was the main campus for well over half a century.  In the beginning of the 1920’s they had classes only through the 10th grade.  The 11th and 12th grades were added in 1922 and the Class of 1923 was the first to graduate from White Hall School. Also in 1923 the new buff brick building was build behind the 2 room school in the fall.  It was a landmark until 2003 when it was torn down for the new junior high.  The wood building was sold for $25.00 and was moved across from Bellingrath Pond.  In the 1930’s a Teacherage was build north of the school for the principal and his family, it also had rooms for single teachers from out of town.  Busing began with one bus.  It ran north on Dollarway to Dexter, south to Dew Drop, then to Hardin.  As the school grew, so did its buildings: the  junior high west of the first school in the 1940’s; the senior high in the  50’s the Plainview school for grades 1 - 6 for the arsenal children in the 40’s and 50’s until the 80’s, a gym and football field in the 40’s and a Home Ec building.  In 1980 the new high school was build. The landmark first school was torn down in 2003 for the new junior high.  We now have 4 grade schools and almost 3,000 students in grades 1 - 12. 

Needler reminded members of upcoming events:  Spring Workshop in Ferndale on March 7th;  Our club date and time to work Home and Garden Show - Friday February 9th from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.   Members volunteered to make cookies for a county community service project on February 6th. 

Kizer reminded members of the next Leader Training on February 6th on Pruning Trees and Mediterranean Cooking class on February 13th, both at the Jefferson County Extension Office.  

A Birthday Dinner was scheduled for February 6th at Larry’s Pizza for Stephenson, Wall, Barbaree, Sarah Hester, Atkinson and Malinda Traweek.

Refreshments of Broccoli Soup, Crackers, Egg Salad Sandwiches, Mandarin Orange Cake, Party Mix and cookies were furnished by Atkinson, Aronowitz, Carr and Reed.

Payton read a story about “Thanks for your Time”.

If you are interested in learning more about Extension Homemakers, you can call any member or Mary Ann Kizer at 870 -534-1033.