Slim Lehart Coming Out of Retirement for a Special Show

Slim Lehart is coming out of retirement for at least one musical performance, two years after the Marshall County native announced that he would be hanging up his guitar after some 60 years.

However, it was this past January when a friend with whom he was visiting in Florida convinced him to return to the stage for a reunion show. That show will be taking place this Friday at the Strand Theatre in Moundsville.

Lehart (R.E. Hartley) said after coming back from Florida he decided to contact some of his country music performers about being a part of the reunion show. “The response was overwhelming from these performers. In fact, I will have a band of 17 for this show, which will be the most I have ever performed with.”

“Since I decided to put on this show, I have heard from a number of friends I have come to know over the years, and several have told me they plan on being in attendance.” He added probably the person coming the longest distance will be from Evansville, Ind., another will be from Cincinnati, Ohio, and yet another will be from Summersville, W.Va.

Among the performers in the show will be Jamboree USA performers Landon Williams, Jennifer Jean, Chelsea Matta, Karen McKenzie, the Earl of Elkview and my wife, Barb.

Musicians will include those from the Wheeling Express Band, along with performers Sands of Time and band guests, Buddy Griffin and Doug Shuman.

The emcee will be Steve Mazure.

In addition to tuning up his guitar, “The Wheeling Cat” has been doing “leg work” in preparation for the show, which has included putting up posters and contacting several businesses which have supported him at summer outdoor performers in Moundsville and Cameron.

He said no tickets to the event will be sold in advance and thus, tickets will be available only at the door.

The doors will open at 6 p.m., with the show to start at 7 p.m.

“I’m looking forward to this performance, and although it is scheduled for two hours, which includes an intermission, us country performers might just go overtime,” Lehart said. He added, “I’ve logged thousands of miles appearing throughout the eastern United States and Canada. However, it was those rugged West Virginia hills where I cultivated my singing style, and that is why I now like to perform locally.”

Speaking of the Slim Lehart event, most of the 64 members of the Moundsville High School Class of 1957 are planning to attend the show in conjunction with their two-day reunion.

The class members will also be holding a social hour/banquet on Saturday evening at the Moundsville Country Club.

Of the 64 who had signed up by Wednesday, 56 are from West Virginia and eight are from other states.

To inquire about a last-minute reservation, contact Roger Smith at 304-243-0190.

The Marshall County Chamber of Commerce monthly Business After Hours this month will be hosted by the Marshall County Commission and Peggy’s Posies Flower Shop. It will be held from 5-7 p.m. on Aug. 24 at the Mound Museum. Reservations are to be made by calling the Chamber at 304-845-2773.

The second annual city of Moundsville Community Day will be held from noon until 5 p.m. on Aug. 26 at Riverfront Park.

The event is held to recognize and show appreciation to the citizens and to those individuals on city boards and commissions for donating their time and expertise in serving the community.

Food and activities for children will be provided.

Also, held that day will be a softball tournament at two locations, East End Park and Valley Fork Park. The tournaments will begin at 8 a.m.

Team signups are still being accepted. For more information, call the city recreation department office at 304-845-7733.

The fee per team is $125.

Orders are now being taken for reserved seating for John Marshall High School football home games by calling 304-845-3926.

Those wishing to have the same seats as last year are to make it known by Monday, as after that date they may be reassigned.

Fall registration for Marshall County Schools’ Adult Education Classes will be held at ABE classroom, located at the former West Virginia Penitentiary (Eighth Street Wagon Gate entrance). The registrations are at 9 a.m. Aug. 21-23, and 6 p.m. on Aug. 28-29.

The ABE classes are scheduled for Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m.

High school equivalency testing (TASC) is free. However, before taking the TASC, each person is required to first pass the TASC Readiness Test, which will be administered every second Wednesday of the month at 12:30 p.; and the last Tuesday of the month at 5 p.m., at the Adult Learning Center.

Plans are being made for seven evening adult classes to be held at John Marshall High School. The classes include welding, intro to wood working, home repair, beginner photography, cooking dinner, beginners’ computer and Microsoft Excel. Classes will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis. Registration will be by phone only, by calling 304-845-7890 and leaving a message.

Three Ohio Valley Soap Box events were held during the past three months, with the final participation having concluded on Aug. 5.

The first event took place on June 17 with 24 participants in the Stock and Super Stock Divisions, which was held in Glen Dale. Landan Dempewolf of Cameron was the Stock Champion and Ben Stock from Wellsburg the Super Stock, and both went on to represent the city of Glen Dale and the Ohio Valley Soap Box Derby at the 80th running of the First Energy All-American Soap Box Derby held in Akron, Ohio.

On July 15, both boys and their families headed off to Akron for a week of racing and special activities in preparation for the July 22 event. Dempewolf won two heats and was eliminated in his third heat where he came within 0.129 second of advancing to the top nine. During the awards ceremony that night, the city of Glen Dale received the Outstanding Race City award and Rev. Dr. Steven Jumper, minister of the First Christian Church, Cameron, received the Outstanding Derby Director award for his hard work and dedication to the Soap Box Derby.

Jumper said, “Although neither one of our entrants won the World Championship, they had a great time and met a lot of new friends from the United States, Canada, Japan and New Zealand. We should be very proud of Ben Stock and Landan Dempewolf for their hard work, dedication and determination.”

The final event of the year took place on Aug. 5 when the first- and second-place drivers in each division from the Ohio Valley Soap Box Derby were invited to participate in a race in Lancaster, Ohio. This event included all the first- and second-place drivers from all the race cities in Region 6, which includes Ohio and West Virginia. Taking part were Dempewolf and Christian Lish from Wellsburg in the Stock Division, and Stock in the Super Stock event. Lance Hartley from Cameron was unable to attend. Dempewolf was eliminated in the third heat, while Stock and Lish were eliminated after two heats.

The Marshall County Panthers and the Cameron football teams will be taking part in a scrimmage today in Cadiz, Ohio.

Both teams are members of the Cadiz Youth League, whose regular season will begin on June 20.

The league is composted of players in grades three through six.

This will be Panthers’ 19 year, having started play in 1999.

Gene Saunders was one of those who formed the team — actually there are two teams, one the varsity and the other the junior varsity –and is still coaching the varsity team.

Saunders said the numbers are up. This year there are 22 varsity players and 25 junior varsity members. There are also 32 cheerleaders, the most ever, according to Saunders.

The first game of the regular season for the Panthers will be on Aug. 20 against Cadiz.

Speaking of Saunders, he said that work is progressing on the RV Park being constructed at Riverfront Park. Currently work on the sewer lines is taking place, and this will be followed by electric work.

While no date for completion of the project has been announced, the city clerk’s office has continued to receive inquiries pertaining to the 25-unit space.

At Tuesday’s city council meeting Colin Simmons was named to a four-year term on the Fire Civil Service Board, which consists of three individuals, one appointed by the mayor (Simmons having appointed by Saunders), one by the Chamber of Commerce and one by the Fire Department.

Speaking of Tuesday’s council meeting, it lasted only 40 minutes.

The date of the Moundsville Recreation Kickball Tournament has been changed to Sept. 23 at St. Jude Park in Glen Dale. It was originally scheduled for Aug. 12.

The new deadline for teams to enter is Sept. 16.

Organizers are hoping to have 12 teams participating.

Sponsors for the event will be Hudson Premier Physical Therapy and Fitness and Lorri Grisell State Farm Agent.

Proceeds from the tournament will be used for recreational upgrades in the city.

When I made mention of my brother’s upcoming birthday in last Sunday’s column, it resulted in what he described was a “surprise of his life.”

Warwood resident Norman Greenan read about his birthday and looked his address up in the Marshall University directory and then gave him a call. The two hadn’t been in touch with one another for 50 years or more. As might be expected they talked about old times for an hour or so.