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Doug Smith Memorial 5K Run or Walk

Doug Smith Memorial 5K Run or Walk

The life of Clay County entrepreneur Doug Smith will be honored on Saturday, Sept. 29, with when friends, family and community members gather at Dale Hollow Dam Park (Celina, TN) at Pavilion below the Dam 200 Campground Road, Celina, TN 38551 for The Doug Smith Memorial 5K Run or Walk..

Visit www.honestabe.com/the-doug-smith-memorial-5k-runwalk to download the application

“In 2011 one of Clay County’s beloved citizens lost a hard-fought battle to cancer,” said Josh Watson, one of the annual event’s organizers. “We want to dedicate this run/walk to his memory

and to honor Mr. Smith by donating the proceeds to the Relay for Life.”

Preregistration applications will be accepted until Sept. 15, with registrants guaranteed a commemorative T-shirt. Registration will be available on the day of the Memorial 5K Walk/Run, but no T-shirt is guaranteed. Registration is $20 for individuals or $50 for a family with children under age 18 living in the same household. Registration and pre-registration packet pick-up will begin at 7:30 a.m. the day of the race.

“The 5k course is relatively flat with occasional slight grades,” Watson said, adding that the 5K begins and ends at Dale Hollow Dam Park.

Watson said that those who are unable to attend but wish to make a memorial donation or sponsor another participant may learn more by calling 800-231-3695 or by emailing joshw@honestabe.com.

To request a registration packet call 800-231-3695, email Inez@honestabe.com or visit www.honestabe.com/the-doug-smith-memorial-5k-runwalk to download the application.

The Doug Smith Memorial 5K Walk/Run is hosted by the employees of the companies owned by the late Doug Smith and his family, including Honest Abe Log Homes, Barky Beaver, GF Hardwoods, Happy Trucking, Mitchell Creek Marina, The Mill Storehouse and Moss Sawmills.

Contact Information:

* Josh Watson – phone: 931-239-8739 / email: joshw@honestabe.com
* Inez Price – phone: 931-258-3648 / email: inez@honestabe.com
* Quentin Moss – phone: 931-258-3944 / email: quentin@gfhardwoods.com
* Mary Pennington – phone: 931-258-3661 / email: mary.barkybeaver@gmail.com

Forestry Offers a Variety of Services With New Rates

Forestry Offers a Variety of Services With New Rates

The Tennessee Department of Agriculture Division of Forestry offers a variety of services for landowners to assist with management of Tennessee’s forest resources. Beginning July 1, 2018, new rates will take effect.

The division’s vendor services include prescribed burning, firebreak installation, timber marking and tree planting and are available to private and public forestland owners statewide.

“We’re proud to offer these services to families and businesses who can benefit,” Agriculture Commissioner Jai Templeton said. “Keeping our forests healthy and productive will result in environmental, economic, and ecological benefits for future generations.”

New rates for some of these services are necessary to cover the costs associated with delivering the services. Please see the attached rate sheet.

The division always encourages landowners to contact private vendors and consulting foresters for implementation of forestry practices, where possible.

“With more than half of Tennessee’s land being forested, proper forest care and management is essential,” State Forester Jere Jeter said. “We are proud to have a close relationship with industry leaders and private vendors to work towards strengthening our forest resources throughout the state.”

In addition to these fee-based vendor services, professional area foresters within the Division of Forestry provide forest planning and technical assistance to landowners free of charge. Through the Forest Stewardship Program, foresters conduct on-the-ground assessments to determine the condition of timber resources, forest health, wildlife habitat, water quality, and cultural resources, such as historic sites or cemeteries.

Other forestry practices, such as non-commercial thinning, cull tree removal, and timber stand improvement including vine control, site preparation for natural regeneration of hardwoods, and mid-story removal, are not offered as a vendor service. Division personnel can demonstrate these types of practices by flagging or marking the trees or vegetation to remove on up to one acre of the client’s property, free of charge. Road closure and rehabilitation services are also not offered as a vendor service.

Contact your local area forester to request services offered through the Tennessee Division of Forestry. You will find more information about these forestry services by clicking here.

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Safe Burning Saves Forests and Lives

Safe Burning Saves Forests and Lives

While human safety is priority one, fire fighting also protects Tennessee’s 14 million acres of forestland. Forests and the forest products industry accounts for $21.7 billion or seven percent of Tennessee’s economy, employing more than 184,000 workers, 5.2 percent of the workforce.

Outdoor sports like hunting and fishing, which depend upon healthy forests, contribute an additional $2.5 billion in the state’s economy, and the scenic beauty of our forests supports the state’s $10.3 billion tourism industry. Forest fires are also a threat to homes and other property. Each year over a dozen Tennessee homes are lost to wildfire, and even more outbuildings and equipment are lost.

Across the state many Tennesseans are moving away from crowded urban areas to rural homes. In many instances these homes are built in the wildland environment. This situation is referred to as the “Wildland-Urban Interface” (WUI). Wildfires that occur in the WUI also threaten and sometimes destroy homes and other improvements. The Division of Forestry is actively working with communities and local fire departments to educate and inform homeowners about how they can mitigate this risk.

For more information on safe burning visit www.burnsafetn.org.

 

Tim Smith Celebrates 48 Years at Smith Family Businesses

Tim Smith Celebrates 48 Years at Smith Family Businesses

Tim Smith recently celebrated his 48th year work anniversary at Moss Sawmills, a sister company to Honest Abe Log Homes, GF Hardwoods and Barky Beaver Mulch and Soil Mix.

Tim was honored by his fellow workers with a catered lunch, gifts and time to tell stories. 

“Tim said that when he started working with my dad, Doug Smith, 48 years ago, one of his first jobs was to pour concrete in the floor of one of the buildings Dad had purchased to begin his businesses in Moss,” said April Smith Patterson, who owns the Smith Family Companies along with her mother, Janie, and brother Shane.

April said that Tim recalled making the company’s first products, broom handles, and how at that time the lumber was actually worth more before they turned them into broom handles, hence the saw milling business was born or started soon after. 

Shane Smith calculated about how much lumber Tim had sawn during his 48 years.

“Since 1970, Tim has sawn roughly more than 200 million board feet, which totals to be 235,000 trailer loads of lumber,” Shane said, adding that, “Tim would have been the first true employee our dad hired since he started the establishment in 1968.”

The Smith family holds Tim in high regard as did Honest Abe’s founder, the late Doug Smith.

“Tim was and is recognized as one of the best overall employees we’ve ever had,” April said. “Dad and Tim were actually first cousins.”

One extra special gift given to Tim during his anniversary celebration was a Bible from Shane Smith and his family. In presenting the Bible, Shane shared a story of a young boy, age 12, who wanted a .22 Henry rifle for his upcoming birthday. He was so excited and made sure to tell his Dad along with cutting out a picture in the Sears Roebuck catalog so he’d get just the right one. When his birthday had arrived his Dad handed him a gift. It was a Bible. The little boy was upset and threw the Bible in the closet resenting that his Dad didn’t get him the gun he had asked for. Time passed and the boy’s father passed away. Once that happened the little boy was cleaning out the home place and found the Bible in the closet he had thrown in so long ago. He opened the Bible and – low and behold – there was the picture of the Henry .22 rifle with the $200 in it. There was a surprise for Tim inside the Bible he was given in appreciation for all Tim’s years of service, dedication and loyalty.

“The answer to all problems in life can be found in the Bible, and I can’t think of a better gift to give someone,” Shane told the team.

The Smith family then handed out Bibles to the rest of the staff who wanted one. 

“We are so thankful and blessed to have Tim as an essential piece to our success from the beginning and look forward to as many more years as he wants to work in the future,” Janie added, expressing the entire family’s sentiments, “Congratulations Tim! We love you!”

50 Year Celebration Set for Oct. 27 at Moss

50 Year Celebration Set for Oct. 27 at Moss

A Clay County family business is celebrating 50 years of entrepreneurship in 2018 with a special public event on Oct. 27.

“It has been 50 years since my dad started manufacturing mop and broom handles in 1968,” said April Smith Patterson, daughter of the late Doug Smith, who along with her mother, Janie, and brother, Shane, own several Moss-based businesses. “Last year, Honest Abe Log Homes introduced a new 10” round log style, so we’re calling our 50th anniversary “Coming Back Around.”

In addition to Honest Abe, the Smith companies include Barky Beaver Mulch and Soil Mix, GF Hardwoods, Happy Trucking, Green Forest Products and Southern Timbercraft and Moss Sawmills. Moss Sawmills is a consolidation of six sawmills that the Smith family operated throughout the region. Last year the family sold three other businesses, Swan Ridge Lake Resort, Rockcastle Farms and Mitchell Creek Marina

“We are and have been for many years the largest employer in our local community, allowing people who love and want to live here be able to work and provide for their families,” Patterson said. “This is something my family takes very seriously, and are continuously working to create jobs in this area.”

The spirit of entrepreneurship is strong in the Smith family. Shane owns McFarland Creek Outdoors, a turkey and whitetail deer hunting ranch, and while April and husband, Nick, have founded three new businesses – Acres of Grace Farms, The Mill Storehouse and A Southern Marketplace Barn Sale – since Doug Smith’s 2011 death.

“The businesses have changed and evolved, adapted to the times,” April observed, noting, “Business was great before the economic downturn hit and most businesses like ours went out of business. It was through the Lord’s good graces and our amazing team members that helped us work hard, get lean and survive those times.”

The Smith family is inviting the public to Moss in Oct. 27 between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. for food, door prizes, tours and live music. The first 100 visitors will receive a commemorative T-shirt.

“I believe folks would love to see how someone from a rural community starting out making broom handles managed to build the businesses we see and operate today,” April said. “We’ll also be having informative speakers about forestry and how we work to preserve and cut sustainably while being good stewards of the land. The tours will demonstrate how we recycle and use every part of the logs.”

In addition to providing jobs the Smith family believes in giving back. Over time the Smith Family companies have supported numerous projects and events that benefit veterans, schools, the fire department and the community. For example, many years ago Janie and Doug donated the log structure that houses the Clay County Museum. Beginning in fall 2018, Honest Abe Log Homes will sponsor the Dave Ramsey financial curriculum for Clay County High School Students. Through Barky Beaver they donate soil and seeds as well as volunteering to help plant community gardens.

“We also have had a lot of impact bringing in tax dollars for the local county that has helped it grow too!” April said. “The economy is getting better, and we are now able to do and offer more to our county and community. We have employees that love this place and want to see the companies continue on another 50 years from now. Our plan is to continue to build upon the great foundation laid before us.”

April said that the Oct. 27 event is a free and open to the public with no reservations required.

“50 years in business is a huge milestone for our family, and we simply want to share it with everyone,” she said. “We are looking forward to a great day sharing our history, heritage and passion for what we do.”

Presentation of 2018 AEF Grant to GF Hardwoods

Presentation of 2018 AEF Grant to GF Hardwoods

 Neil Owens, Forestry Business Consultant, Tennessee Department of Agriculture

Ed Harlan, Assistant Commissioner, Agricultural Advancement, Tennessee Department of Agriculture

Jai Templeton, Commissioner, Tennessee Department of Agriculture

Quentin Moss, President, GF Hardwoods

Nick Patterson, President, Barky Beaver Mulch and Soil Mixes

April Smith Patterson, Co-Owner, GF Hardwoods

Amy New, Assistant Commissioner, Community and Rural Development, Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development

Clay County Mayor Dale Reagan 

 Brooxie Carlton, Deputy Assistant Commissioner, Community and Rural Development, Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development

Logan McCoy, Special Projects, Community and Rural Development, Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development

GF Hardwoods Receives Agriculture Enterprise Grant

GF Hardwoods Receives Agriculture Enterprise Grant

GF Hardwoods in Moss is one of nine Tennessee businesses that will continue to grow and positively impact rural economies through a grant a provided by the Agriculture Enterprise Fund.

“GF Hardwoods has been a supplier of hardwood lumber for domestic and international customers since 1979,” said April Patterson, who is co-owner of GF Hardwoods, which was founded by her father, the late Doug Smith. “Our family business has been committed to making an impact in our area for 40 years by creating jobs and producing products our region can be proud of.”

Tennessee Agriculture Commissioner Jai Templeton and Economic and Community Development Assistant Commissioner Amy New joined local, state and business leaders in Clay County on April 16 for the announcement that GF Hardwoods was approved for a cost-sharing program to assist GF Hardwoods in purchasing a new loader and in updating valves on the lumber processing company’s dry kilns.

“Forestry is an incredibly important part of our state and local economies, and we are thrilled to see state support for businesses like ours,” said Patterson, who along with her brother, Shane Smith, and mother, Janie Smith, own other forestry-related businesses in the Upper Cumberland, including Honest Abe Log Homes, Barky Beaver Mulch and Soil Mix, Moss Sawmills and The Wood Store.

A product of the Governor’s Rural Task Force, the Agriculture Enterprise Fund is an incentive program that supports job creation and economic development by facilitating agricultural development. Priority is given to businesses located in at-risk or distressed counties, of which Clay County is one.

“We feel extremely blessed that GF Hardwoods is among the nine statewide beneficiaries of the Agriculture Enterprise Fund this year,” said Patterson.

Successful grant recipients like GF Hardwoods were required to demonstrate strong potential for impact on local farm income, access to markets, increased capacity or agricultural innovation.

“The logs for our lumber are acquired within a 30-50 mile radius of our plant,” Patterson said. “We are proud to partner with landowners and loggers, who along with our team at our onsite milling operation, Moss Sawmills, enable us to consistently produce quality lumber that is competitive in a global market.”

For more information about GF Hardwoods and Moss Sawmills, visit www.gfhardwoods.com or contact GF Hardwoods President Quentin Moss at (931) 258-3944.

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Story by Claudia Johnson. For media information contact claudia@honestabe.com.

Progressing After the Fire

Progressing After the Fire

We have had a crew at Moss Sawmills who have worked so hard to get a deck built so we can CONTINUE to run and so we only lost two days. Isn’t that amazing?

So what got damaged? The trim saw, chipper, air compressor system, electronics to the mill (but they got it fixed to run so now the saws are operating and we are at least running now… what a blessing) the parts room, computer system, were all damaged or destroyed. Some photos of the deck they built are attached and they built it to run until we can get it all up and going (likely 2 months). We’re having to sort and bundle the lumber by hand but are taking it to GF Hardwoods‘ facilities across the road to use their sling sorter to get everything sorted there.

But now to have gotten things to where we can run and people can keep working in only two short days was a HUGE feat. We have an amazing team that made that happen. Some of the team who helped are Quentin Moss, mill co-owner Shane Smith, Scottie Reagan, Bobby Huckeby, Mikey Rich, Calvin Smith, Donnie Grace, Vernal, Joshua Buck, Tony Trobaugh, Ricky Trobaugh, Donnie Smith, Lee Craighead, Ed Hammock and many others who have gone above and beyond to get things up and running! We are so appreciative.

Another Special thanks to Mt. Vernon, Hermitage Springs, Moss, & Celina fire departments along with our special crew who were there helping the night of the fire, including Jimmy Trent, Brad Mini, Jeff Hatcher, Jacob Wheeler and many more.

Scottie Reagan is pictured above with his father, Clay County Mayor Dale Reagan, who came to thank us for providing jobs for our rural county, assess fire damage to make a report. To the left is the burned portion of the sawmill.

Aftermath of Sawmill Fire

Aftermath of Sawmill Fire

January 30, 2018

Aftermath of sawmill fire….

You all have been so kind. Because of all the texts, calls, and concerns, we wanted to share an update from the recent fire at Moss Sawmills. Everyone who has came out and expressed their concerns has truly warmed our hearts. In order for our businesses to run and be successful, it truly takes our entire community’s support. Our ER services crew and AMAZING volunteer firefighters have gone above and beyond to help us in times of great need. If it wasn’t for their quick attention, the fire could have been much worse. To them, we are so grateful. Fortunately, the fire was contained to one area thanks to their attentiveness. 

Our amazing and talented crew finished a deck to allow the lumber to run outside of the mill so we can keep everyone working as soon as possible. It is our goal to serve those who work with us and keeping them with a job a number one priority. We’ve just had the best team anyone could ask for! From our family to yours, thank you. We love you all and I’ll continue to share and keep you updated. We have been truly blessed.

Fire Guts Portion of Moss Sawmills

Fire Guts Portion of Moss Sawmills

January 27, 2018

A statement about the fire at Moss Sawmills …

The fire did damage to the sling sorter, but we are so thankful no one got hurt. As I sit here tonight and reflect back on the day, I feel beyond thankful and blessed. We have the most amazing volunteer fire departments that are always going above and beyond to help our county and community in times of need. And while there was loss and damage to the building and equipment, the amazing thing is the hearts and dedication of those within our crew, ER services crews, and fire departments that has warmed my heart. Thank you to everyone who came out, called, and texted. I am so thankful to have such great family, friends, and co-workers that care so much. I only hate that I wasn’t there to help in some way, but my brother was there on a loader in the action (I’m glad he didn’t get hurt!). I love you all and appreciate everything. Our family is so grateful.

April Smith Patterson, co-owner, Moss Sawmills and GF Hardwoods

Holiday Schedule

Holiday Schedule

We work hard at GF Hardwoods and Moss Sawmills, so we want our employees to enjoy the holidays. You’ll find us here Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. until 3:45 p.m. but on major holidays, we’ll be spending time with family, taking advantage of the woods or the lake and engaging in sports or hobbies. Those holidays that we are closed are New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, July 4, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday, Christmas (and one accompanying day). To check whether we are open, click HERE.

Download Grading Guide

Download Grading Guide

Understanding grading standards may seem a little daunting, but you can download a number of informative guides that will help you to understand the grading system used by hardwood processors like GF Hardwoods. Download one of the many helpful guides HERE.

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