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Serving: Central

Sun shines briefly on Delta Council day, catfish is served

The sun didn’t shine on Delta Council Day or at least not all of it in 2015, but that didn’t stop Council members and guests from enjoying the chance to see old friends, hear discussions of some of the latest issues and sample the fried catfish and hush puppies at the organization’s 80th annual meeting in Cleveland, Miss.

Despite the storm clouds that dumped about a quarter of an inch of rain on the Quadrangle at Delta State University 30 minutes before the catfish was to be served, several hundred Council members stood in line and dined on the traditional catfish and hush puppies.

Sen. Roger Wicker, a native of Tupelo in northeast Mississippi, traveled to the Delta from Washington and talked about a new sense of bipartisanship in the U.S. Senate and the impact that is having on education, defense, foreign policy and infrastructure. He also spoke about how the increased emphasis on highways and rail lines is helping bring more tourist dollars to the Delta and to Mississippi.

Meanwhile, Delta Council leaders transferred the reins of the organization from Walton Gresham, a businessman from Indianola, Miss., to Al Rankins Jr., a former police officer and member of the Washington County Board of Supervisors.

And they also honored 140 honor graduates from all of the 18 counties served by Delta Council, including a young lady named Whitely Stiff of Yazoo County High School who received a $2,500 scholarship for being this year’s top honor graduate.

For more on this year’s annual meeting, visit

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