Monday, February 19, 2018

Little Texas to Play in Roland

Country music group Little Texas will perform a free show at 
Lee Creek Tavern inside Cherokee Casino & Hotel Roland on Feb. 24.

The country-rock group Little Texas is sharing hit singles from throughout the band’s career on the Lee Creek Tavern stage at the Cherokee Casino in Roland.

The free, standing room-only show begins at 8 p.m. on Saturday.

Founded in Nashville, the multiplatinum-selling band was responsible for shaking up the country charts with a new sound that fused modern rock music with traditional country themes and styles. The band was rewarded by sales of more than 7 million albums, three Grammy nominations, Vocal Group of the Year by the Academy of Country Music and Album of the Year by the Country Music Association.

Little Texas’ first single, “Some Guys Have All the Love,” peaked at No. 8 on the Billboard US Country charts. The single was followed by others from the debut album, “First Time for Everything,” including “You and Forever and Me,” “What Were You Thinkin’,” “I’d Rather Miss You” and the title track. Each single landed in the Top 20 on Billboard, while the album reached RIAA US gold.

Other popular hits from the band include “What Might Have Been,” “God Blessed Texas,” “Amy’s Back in Austin,” “Kick a Little” and the Billboard No. 1 single “My Love.”

In 1996 the band also charted “Kiss the Girl,” a song from the Disney film “The Little Mermaid.” The single reached No. 52 on the US Country Charts and was recorded on The Best of Country Sing the Best of Disney Album.

Little Texas has released one live album and 10 studio albums, including the 1993 double platinum album, “Big Time,” and the 1994 gold album, “Kick a Little.”

For more information on Little Texas, visit

Cherokee Casino & Hotel Roland is located off Highway 64 on Cherokee Boulevard in Roland.

For more information, visit or call (800) 256-2338. All guests must be a least 21 years of age to attend.

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

For more news stories stay tuned to The MIX 105.1 or visit


Members Honored at Chamber Banquet

Judy Martens, left, Sallisaw Chamber of Commerce executive director, presented outgoing chamber President Cheryl Mills with a wrapped gift, which she opened later, at the annual Sallisaw Chamber of Commerce Banquet held Saturday at the Sallisaw Middle School. Jeff Mayo is the 2018 chamber president.

Jesse Martin, Oklahoma State University Senior Associate Athletic Director of External Affairs, was the keynote speaker at the Sallisaw Chamber of Commerce 70th Anniversary and Annual Recognition Banquet. Martin spoke on The Power of Orange.

Nan Stites, left, presented members of the Sallisaw Chamber of Commerce Leadership Class with their certificates and presented the graduates to the chamber members at their annual banquet. For more information on Leadership Class training contact the chamber at 918-775-2558.

Rick and Rhonda Nicholson of A-OK Printing and Perfectly Posh Boutique, left, were presented with the Sallisaw Chamber of Commerce Member of the Year award at the annual Sallisaw Chamber of Commerce Awards Banquet. Chamber President Cheryl Mills, right, presented the award.

Bryan Warner, left, was awarded the Chuck Sainer Community Spirit Award at the Sallisaw Chamber of Commerce Awards Banquet Saturday. Marley Abell, right, the chamber board of directors president elect, presented the award to Warner, who also serves on the board

Treye Girdner, right, was praised for his volunteer efforts with the Sallisaw Chamber of Commerce at the chamber’s award banquet Saturday, including his efforts with the parking committee at Diamond Daze, the chamber-sponsored festival. For his efforts, Girdner was presented with the Outstanding Festival Volunteer award by Gary Schaefer, left. 

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

For more news stories stay tuned to The MIX 105.1 or visit


Sanders Sentenced to 65 Months

The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Muskogee announced Friday that Kevin Wayne Sanders Jr., 29, of Sallisaw was sentenced to 65 months imprisonment, and six years supervised release for the distribution of oxycodone.

The charge arose from an investigation by the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics, the Sallisaw Police Department, and the Drug Enforcement Administration.

U.S. Attorney Brian J. Kuester said, “The misuse of Oxycodone and other prescription pain medications is wreaking havoc on our communities. Those people that unlawfully distribute those drugs do so for their own profit without regard for the lives that will be devastated, and they must be stopped. The investigation and prosecution of the defendant has stopped him from further distribution and hopefully will deter others from getting involved in the drug trade business. The law enforcement agencies that contributed to this investigation should be commended for their efforts.”

U.S. District Judge Ronald A. White presided over the hearing. Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy Hammer represented the United States. 

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

For more news stories stay tuned to The MIX 105.1 or visit


53rd Junior Livestock Show Is Feb. 21-23

The 53rd Sequoyah County Junior Livestock Show will be held Feb. 21 through 23 at the Sequoyah County Fairgrounds in Sallisaw.

The livestock show is sponsored by the many members of the Sallisaw Chamber of Commerce, and features a Bidders Barbecue at 6 p.m. on Friday (Feb. 23), followed by the premium auction at 7 pm. Friday.

The show begins on Wednesday (Feb. 21). Wednesday’s schedule includes goats, lambs, heifers and steers, along with goat, sheep and beef showmanship. Animals will be checked in between 9 a.m. and noon, and showing begins at 5 p.m.

Swine will be shown on Thursday (Feb.22), and check-in is again between 9 a.m. and noon. Showing begins at 5 p.m. and includes swine showmanship.

Sinclair Armstrong of Vian is again in charge of the Bidders Barbecue, which is open to everyone.

Auctioneer Tommy Wright will be the auctioneer for the premium auction.

For more information contact the OSU Extension Office in the Sequoyah County Courthouse in Sallisaw or call 918-775-2368.

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

For more news stories stay tuned to The MIX 105.1 or visit


New Ag Agent Arrives Tuesday

Jennifer Patterson of Stilwell, Sequoyah County’s new Oklahoma State University (OSU) Extension Educator, will be introduced to Sequoyah County Commissioners at their meeting on Tuesday.

She replaces Tony Yates who retired in December. Yates served as the county ag agent for 33 years.

Randy Pirtle, OSU Northeast Regional Director for 24 counties, said Patterson will serve both Adair and Sequoyah Counties, but will spend most of this week in Sequoyah County because of the Livestock Show Wednesday through Friday.

Pirtle said OSU agents are having to double up on counties due to budget constraints.

“Unfortunately it’s just the way we have to do things now,” Pirtle said.

He added that 12 counties in the northeast region have doubled up now, and more are planned.

Earlier, OSU officials said last year that, statewide, about 20 Oklahoma counties are sharing their agents on a rotating basis, due to funding cutbacks. In 2014 the service received $55 million a year in funding, but in 2018 that funding has been cut to $42 million.

Pirtle said Patterson began in Adair County on Thursday. She has an animal science degree from OSU, and a veterinarian technician certificate. She also teaches vet tech at Tulsa.

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

For more news stories stay tuned to The MIX 105.1 or visit


Friday, February 16, 2018

Veterans Fundraiser Will Feature Local Bands


A Sallisaw woman, who is the mother of two veterans, is hoping to raise funds to erect a suicide-prevention sign next to Interstate 40.

Linda Tibbitts has enlisted the help of the VFW Waylon Staffan Post 4518 in Sallisaw to help her with the project.

Tibbitts’ son Rich served in the U.S. Navy and son Steven served for 18 years with the U.S. Marines. Both are now disabled.

Linda said she felt the need to help veterans, and she has planned a concert with a silent auction and prize drawings on March 3. The event will be held at the Sequoyah County Fairgrounds in Sallisaw.

Tibbitts said the concert will feature the Steeldust band from 2 to 4 p.m., The Lawman band from 4 to 6 p.m., and the California Country band from 6 to 9 p.m.

Local merchants are donating items and merchandise for the auction and drawings, and will be providing food for a concession stand.

Admission will be $10 per person or $25 for a family of three or four. Tickets for the drawings will be $1 each or six tickets for $5. The winners do not need to be present to win.

For more information contact Linda Tibbitts at 918-208-9854.

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

For more news stories stay tuned to The MIX 105.1 or visit


Voting Against Largest Tax Increase in State History; By Rep. John Bennett

I want my constituents to know the House just voted down the largest tax increase in Oklahoma history. I voted no on House Bill 1033xx, also known as the first portion of the Step Up Oklahoma plan. Altogether, the plan would have raised $723 million, largely on the backs of average Oklahomans through income tax changes and increased taxes at the gas pump.

This plan was brokered by big business leaders who have no concept of what it’s like to live pay check to pay check or be taxed nearly to death. When I met my constituents on their doorsteps, in their living rooms, at my local office and in the community I gave them my word I would not vote to raise their taxes. I kept my word and will keep on keeping it.

The likes of such a massive tax increase hasn’t been seen since the Democrat-controlled majority passed House Bill 1017 in the 1990’s. That plan led voters to change the state Constitution requiring a three-fourths majority of both legislative chambers to pass any tax increase. In the house, that equals 76 votes.

The vote Monday was 62 in favor and 35 against. This troubles me. This bill should never have been brought to a vote, especially before we hear the latest revenue figures from the state Board of Equalization. The board meets next week to give us an idea of revenue for fiscal year 2019. I’m hearing we’ll have about a $170 million surplus, not the $850 million shortfall predicted last fall.

The constitutional supermajority requirement has effectively killed every major tax increase attempted by the Legislature. The change does allow a vote on tax increases to be brought to a vote of the people, and that is exactly what should happen. County and city governments can only increase taxes by a vote of the people; the state shouldn’t be any different. 

The people I represent, specifically the middle and lower income families who would have been hit the hardest with this latest tax increase voiced their thoughts to me before, during and after the vote. Some were for the tax increase – and who can blame teachers advocating for a pay raise – but a great majority of this district was against it. While teachers certainly need a raise, the Legislature owes it to this state to make sure that happens the right way and we owe it to hard-working taxpayers to be respectful of your hard-earned dollars and not rob you of them.

I could not in good conscience vote on such a massive tax increase package for a few reasons. I believe it is irresponsible governance to ignore the systemic issues that got Oklahoma into this mess and to punish my citizens with higher taxes to solve our current budget woes. Putting a Band-Aid on a sucking chest wound is a temporary fix. We are in a boat with a hole in the bottom, water coming in on all sides, and just raising taxes is equivalent to standing in the boat and dipping the water out with a bucket instead of plugging the hole first.

We must hold all agencies accountable for your tax dollars instead of just throwing more money at them in the hopes everyone will just forget about the government corruption that has been taking place.

I've been asked, "You voted no; so what's your solution?" I have proposed many options to leadership. Of course the most obvious is addressing the waste, fraud and abuse. This is not a hypothetical but a proven issue in our state agencies. We need audits and investigations already underway to continue. This will save money and stop the bleeding, but, it's not the only solution. There are countless other reforms including, but not limited to, using existing funds from the Commissioners of the Land Office to pay for a teacher pay raise, using TSET funds for actual health care needs; bringing the administrative costs in higher education to the national average, saving $300 million per year. Our Arkansas neighbors recently audited the Medicaid roles and found over $80 million dollars in savings. 

There is light at the end of the tunnel, and we will find a way for a teacher pay raise and to fund core functions of government without raising your taxes. We are only in our second week of this regular session. Now that the Step Up plan has been defeated, I believe the Legislature can get back to work on something that can pass without harming the hard-working taxpayer.

Please contact me with your concerns, issues and input. I truly appreciate it. It is an honor to serve and fight for you as your state representative.

John Bennett represents Oklahoma House District 2. He can be reached at (405) 557-7315 or

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

For more news stories stay tuned to The MIX 105.1 or visit