Thumbs-up: to Watauga County Schools Superintendent Scott Elliott, who continues to raise the bar on the success of our school system by earning the honor being named Northwest North Carolina Superintendent of the Year by the Northwest Regional Educational Service Agency. Chosen from among a dozen school districts by his peers — other superintendents — Elliott is now eligible to compete for statewide recognition. Of course, we already know what the entire state has yet to find out — we have one of the best superintendents in the nation serving the children, staff and community of Watauga County Schools.

Thumbs-up: to Ashton Brumfield, a 13-year-old student at Hardin Park, for earning the top spot in the fourth annual Ducky Regatta. Brumfield’s No. 10 duck was declared the winner of the Casting Bread Food Pantry fundraiser, earning the teenager $300 as she and others raised money to support the nonprofit’s mission serving as a food pantry and soup kitchen sponsored by FaithBridge United Methodist Church.

Thumbs-up: to today, June 16, a special day in Blowing Rock as the dedication of Ginny Stevens Lane takes place at 4 p.m. This much-anticipated dedication was organized by the Friends of Ginny Stevens Committee. Stevens played a critical role in preserving several historical sites in Blowing Rock before her death in 2017.

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