January 9, 2013 

While we are already firmly into 2013, there are still plenty of great things to remember about 2012. I have never been really good about new year’s resolutions, but next year, I resolve to turn in my new year column earlier. So while it might be a little late, here’s my list of some of the best things in 2012.

BEST PLACE TO HAVE LUNCH: McCall’s. Locally owned and operated, McCall’s has an incredible menu and a staff that is extremely friendly and patient -- because week after week they wait on me to read the menu before I once again order the chicken salad, which is just too good not to have every time you are in there.

BEST FRIEND’S HOUSE TO HAVE LUNCH: I was invited over because I was doing an interview, but when I left James Farmer’s house, I counted him among my friends -- just like everybody else who has ever met James. The author of five books and a sought-after TV personality, James is just as sweet as the tea he serves you.

BEST LOCAL CELEBRITY: I was at the Fellowship of Christian Athletes banquet to write an article and took my son Scotty along. After the banquet, Scotty introduced himself to Willie Reid, a former Warner Robins High School standout who played at Florida State University and in the pros before returning home to open a car dealership. I expected Reid to shake Scotty’s hand and move along since there were so many people in attendance wanting to speak with him, but he took the time to have a real conversation with my son. When he concluded by inviting Scotty to drop by his car lot anytime so they could talk more football, I could tell he really meant it.

BEST ANNUAL TRADITION: Northside High School seems to win the region One Act competition every year and this year added another state title to its trophy cabinet. But more than great plays, Brian Barnett, Northside’s drama director, instills a strong work ethic, a love of the arts and an appreciation for the passions of others in his students.

BEST ANTI OUT WITH THE OLD, IN WITH THE NEW ATTITUDE: Distraught by the school board’s decision to tear down Rumble Academy, the original Warner Robins High School, community members banded together to form Save Rumble. While it has yet to be seen whether the school board will be moved by their efforts, Save Rumble has at least started conversations about preserving the history of Warner Robins.

BEST NIGHT TO CRY AND TO LAUGH: The Warner Robins Hall of Fame had its first inductions this year, and the night was a rousing success that brought back some sweet memories to all in attendance. Nominated by members of the community, the contributions of Henrietta McIntyre, Pearl Stephens, Judge Nick Lazaros, David Perdue, Frank Ryals, Charles Williams and Ernest W. Wood will now go down in our history as well.

Contact Alline Kent at 396-2467 or allinekent@cox.net.

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