Up & Coming Weekly

May 26, 2020

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM MAY 27-JUNE 2, 2020 UCW 15 EARL VAUGHAN JR., Senior Staff Writer. COMMENTS? EarlUCWS- ports@gmail.com. 910-364-6638. Hope Mills News & Views NEWS Cumberland County's newest Biscuitville fast- food restaurant is all dressed up and ready for open- ing day in Hope Mills. The only question is exactly when that will be. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the opening date for the restaurant at the intersection of Hope Mills Road and George Owen Road is generically scheduled for summer, but officials at the business's restaurant support center in Greensboro can't offer any more specific information on the opening than that. Alon Vanterpool is the marketing manager for Biscuitville, which is primarily a North Carolina busi- ness with locations largely located in the Triad area of Winston-Salem, Greensboro and High Point, along with some in Virginia. Vanterpool said Biscuitville has expanded into the Triangle area of Raleigh and Durham and is also growing in Fayetteville as the addition of the Hope Mills restaurant indicates. Construction of the Hope Mills location was well underway when concerns about the pandemic reach- ing the United States started to grow. Vanterpool said Biscuitville officials quickly realized plans for moving forward with the opening of the res- taurant would be heavily influenced by following state guidelines put in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Biscuitville does have other restaurants already open in the Fayetteville area that are currently serving drive-through customers only. The first step to get the new Hope Mills location up and running will be completing the hiring of a man- ager for the store along with the staff. Vanterpool said Biscuitville typically begins the search for the top staff positions about six months before opening then hires the members of the restau- rant crew four to six weeks before opening. As of mid-May, the Hope Mills location is still look- ing for a manager/operator, with plans to hire approx- imately 40 people to work on the restaurant crew. Vanterpool said open positions on the restaurant crew can be found at www.biscuitville.com/careers. She isn't sure what the status of filling any of the crew positions is at this time, but she knows the hiring of crew members was on Biscuitville's radar before the pandemic struck. "As soon as we get the go-ahead, we'll be going full speed ahead,'' Vanterpool said. Visit the company's website at www.biscuitville. com for any general questions about Biscuitville or the new Hope Mills location. Hope Mills Biscuitville set for summer opening by EARL VAUGHAN JR. The Hope Mills Biscuitville is ready for opening day, but the date is up in the air. NCHSAA honors Gray's Creek's Nance by EARL VAUGHAN JR. Physical education teachers do a lot more than roll out the basketballs for their students and make sure everybody is wearing the prop- er attire for running laps or playing volleyball. Especially physical education teachers like Jeff Nance at Gray's Creek High School. In addition to regular physical education classes, Nance teaches what's called an adap- tive physical education class for students with special needs. It was partially because of his work with this group of students that led the North Carolina High School Athletic Association to single Nance out as one of the winners of this year's Homer Thompson Memorial Award called Eight Who Make A Difference. The award is presented annually by the NCHSAA to one person from each of the state's eight regional districts. The winners were hon- ored as excellent role models to student athletes through a positive and dedicated approach to coaching. Nance was nominated by Gray's Creek athletic director and NCHSAA Board of Directors member Troy Lindsey. The press release from the NCHSAA called Nance a special person who comes around once in a blue moon, describing him as gregarious, passionate, outspoken, humble and larger than life. Earl Horan may have offered an even better description of Nance. Horan is a special needs teacher on the faculty at Gray's Creek. His son, Earl "Early Bird" Horan, was one of Nance's special needs students during his four years at the school. "Jeff has the patience of a saint,'' Horan said. "He's got such a good heart.'' Every morning during school, the two self-con- tained special education classes at Gray's Creek come to the school's atrium where Nance is on duty. "They'll ask permission to come over there and give him a quick hug,'' Horan said. "He goes out of his way to tell them he loves them.'' Nance said the adaptive physical education class he teaches is easily his favorite. "It's for kids who need a little extra help in a controlled setting,'' he said. "We have to modify some of the games and the techniques we teach them. A lot of the kids are nonverbal.'' He treats each child as an individual but does it in a class setting. "They are just a pleasure to be around,'' he said of his adaptive students. "They take everything in stride and they're not judgmental of each other. They're always happy to do what you ask them to do.'' Nance said his exceptional children are blessed with what he calls a double dose of love and compassion. "I don't think they are tainted by wanting to be in the pecking order,'' he said. "I don't think they are worried about being popular. They love life for what it is.'' Nance coaches the Gray's Creek baseball team and has exceptional children involved in his program as managers for the team. "Our players take our managers in as their little brothers or teammates,'' he said. "Baseball is a kid's game played by young men and adults, and they (the exceptional children) bring a child's-like view to the game.'' The managers wear baseball helmets in the dugout for safety and help with a variety of duties like sweeping out the dugout, chas- ing foul balls or keeping up with pitch counts. "They are so happy to be part of it,'' Nance said. "I hope it rubs off on the players that no matter what your role is, just being part of the team, everybody is equal. You don't have to be the superstar.'' Nance thinks he gets as much from the experi- ence of working with exceptional children as they do. "They bring me back to center,'' he said. "They relax me.'' He thanked both his immediate family and the countless coaches he's worked with since his youth for helping to foster his love for young people. "I'm happy to have role models like my mother and brother and former coaches,'' he said. "It moti- vates me to try and do better.'' Jeff Nance, right, hugs Earl "Early Bird" Horan at 2019 graduation.

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