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Fire Officials Say Drop in Temperatures Can Bring Spike in Fires

Chances are you've been bundling up, or cranking up the heat, trying to stay warm lately.

Fire officials say there are a couple things you should know before turning on that space heater or lighting up your fireplace.

"We're busier this time of year than any other season," says Lt. Demeterius Ellison with the Macon-Bibb Fire Department.

Ellison says that's because when the temperatures drop, the space heaters and fireplaces usually come out of hibernation, leaving homes prone to fire-related accidents.

He says space heaters played a big role in Macon's spike in fires during January.

"They were due to being too close to combustible materials, too close to the beds, too close to sofas, curtains," he says.

He says you should:

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Veterans To Be Honored At Fort Hawkins

Some Central Georgians are gearing up to honor veterans on Thursday at Fort Hawkins.

More than a dozen people came out to the historic site on Sunday to take a tour of the three story block-house and an archaeological dig site.  The attendees also checked out some ancient artifacts.  The Friends of Fort Hawkins hosted the Veterans Day open house.

Fort Hawkins Commission Chairman Marty Willett showed tourists around the 200-year-old fort while preparing for this week's Veterans Day ceremony to be held at the historic site on November 11.

Willet says Sunday was a part of the Fort Hawkins bicentennial celebration and a salute to veterans, including those who were the first U.S. Army veterans to serve in Macon.

"We want more folks to come out and connect with this early American history. This is the perfect place that they can share and demonstrate their local and national pride," says Willett.

Dozens Turn Out For Anti-Violence Rally in Macon

More than 60 people turned out for an anti-violence rally outside Macon's city hall Saturday morning.

Several people spoke out about their concerns regarding violence in the community.  

Idonia Jackson shared a story about her nephew, who she says was robbed on the front steps of her Cherokee Heights home more than a week ago.

"He had to beg for his life to keep them from killing him," says Jackson of her nephew's experience.

Now she says, she wants the community to act.

"This is my town and I live here and I want to bring some sanity back," says Jackson.

The rally was sponsored by the Macon-Bibb NAACP, and three other media organizations.

Organizers say they wanted to give people an opportunity to express their concerns in front of community leaders and encourage the community to take action.

Lewis Won't Request Recount, Concedes Bibb DA's Race

After saying Friday she planned to request a recount, Sharell Lewis says she changed her mind and Saturday conceded the race to opponents Greg Winters and David Cooke.

Certified results from three counties show Lewis 40 votes away from a spot in a runoff in the Macon Circuit district attorney's race. State law allows Lewis to request a recount, since the margin is less than 1 percent.

She says, even before the results were final, she posted a note on her campaign web site saying she'd request a recount whether she was ahead or behind, because "A prosecutor's job is not to win at all cost, it's to seek the truth."

Lewis says she changed her mind and decided not to request a recount late Friday night, saying "With technology the way it is, I don't think the numbers are going to change."

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Hundreds Attend Tubman Museum Fundraiser

About 300 people laced up their dancing shoes on Sunday night to support Macon's Harriet Tubman museum.

The theme for this year's fundraiser was called "All That Jazz On The Bayou."

The event featured cajun food and entertainment by A.J. the D.J.

This year the museum held a raffle to try to raise extra money.  Prizes included a six-night beach vacation and a flat screen T.V.

Executive Director Andy Ambrose says profits go to the Tubman museum but also help kids in the area.

He says the Tubman foundation appreciates all the encouragement from people at the event.

"Oh, it's very gratifying.  It really shows that the Tubman museum right now is appreciated by the community, and we're exceedingly grateful for all their support," said Ambrose.

This is the largest fundraiser of the year for the Tubman museum.

Georgia Republicans Strip Cagle's Powers

Georgia's Republican state senators have taken away some of Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle's powers.

After meeting for nearly eight hours in Macon, members of the Republican caucus announced that Cagle can no longer appoint committee members or chairmen.

A seven-member committee will make those decisions and Cagle gets to appoint two of the members.

Macon state Sen. Cecil Staton and others called it a "power-sharing" arrangement, not an attack against Cagle.

"This was not in my view in any way an attempt to slight him or to degrade the lieutenant governor or even to take away from the Lt. governor, but it is our duty every two years for the next bi-annual the next two year session of the general assembly to choose our rules and our officers and that's exactly what we did today," said Staton.

But Staton also said it was partly in response to complaints from several Republican members who lost chairman positions in the last session.

Macon P.D Relocates Bike Patrol For More Visibility, Safer Downtown

Some downtown businesses got a new neighbor Friday- the Macon Police.

The Macon Police Department relocated their bike patrol office from Martin Luther King Boulevard to Cherry Street, and it's a move that some say will make a difference downtown.

Pamela Benson is one of them. She works at Acapulco Mexican Restaurant on the corner of Cherry and Third Streets.

"It's busy over here on this corner,"says Benson of the area outside the restaurant.

She says groups of people frequently hang out on benches outside Acapulco.  

"You got some over there that ask for, you know, money and stuff like that so it gets annoying sometimes," says Benson. 

Annoying she says, and bad for business.

"Who wants to go to a restaurant with people hanging out on the corner?" asks Benson.

She says overall, she feels very safe downtown, but she's happy to welcome the bike patrol to the area.