Tri-County expectations for 2014

Dec. 31, 2013 @ 06:26 PM

Throughout the Tri-County, the dawn of a new year is bringing with it hopes and aspirations.

Samantha Patrick is among those looking forward to 2014.

The 19-year-old Vance-Granville Community College student has applied to the nursing program and this might be the year that she begins her nursing education.

“It’s been a lifelong dream of mine,” said Patrick, who is interested in pediatric nursing.

As the new year approaches, Patrick said she hopes to stay in school and continue working at Betty B’s in downtown Henderson.

For some, the new year is a fresh opportunity to kick bad habits.

Evonne Mendieta, who works at Staples, said she has been smoking for five years and wants to quit in 2014.

“I quit for three months earlier this year, but started again,” the 23-year-old said.

For others, the new year is bringing big changes.

Hunter Hartness and his wife moved recently from Henderson to Granville County, where they are building a house.

“We were very fortunate to sell our house in four days,” Hartness said.

But, the couple did not expect it to sell so quickly and had not yet found a new place to live.

Once the house sold, Hartness said they were scrambling to find a home that suited their two huge Irish Wolfhounds.

When they could not find a house that met their needs, he said they decided to build one.

The new year also serves as a chance for improvement within the community.

Linda Adcock said she hopes to see downtown Garnett Street flourish in 2014 as it had when she was growing up.

“I remember the sidewalks were so crowded downtown that you had to walk on the street,” she said. “The people on this side of town need somewhere to shop. For those who don’t drive or don’t have a car, it puts them in a bind.”

Adcock also wants her favorite bread spot to return to Henderson.

“I would like to see Merita come back,” she said.

The Merita Bakery Outlet Store was located on Dabney Drive, but closed in November 2012 when Hostess Brands announced bankruptcy. Merita is a corporate-owned subsidiary of Hostess Brands.

“I wish someone would open another one,” Adcock said.

Phil Hart, owner of Dataforge, also hopes the city will experience revitalization in the new year.

“We all want to see more business downtown,” Hart said. “I would love to have more customers here. We can only stay here if we have customers.”

Hart, who runs a website devoted to Henderson, said he would like the city to offer some form of local entertainment on New Year’s Eve next year.

He said he wanted to post local New Year’s Eve festivities on his website. But there aren’t any in Henderson.

“I had to post something happening in Raleigh, instead,” he said.


Contact the writer at