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The collective eyes of the country music industry are focused on the Nicola Valley again, as the Mountainfest returns next year after a year off. Ron Sanders, President of the Walk of Stars Society, was part of a local contingent at the BC Country Music Association Awards on the weekend and he says Mountainfest's return combined with the first Great Canadian Bike Rally, both next July, will keep Merritt on the map in the eyes of the country music industry. Also, Sanders isn't mentioning names but says he spoke with a number of interested entertainers being considered for the Society's major fundraising gala next Spring.
There's been a lot of concern lately over the amount of illegal dumping in the City of Merritt. Bylaw Enforcement Officer Marguerite Kempin says it's not the only garbage related concern as she also gets a number of residents illegally use businesses blue dumpsters to throw away household waste. Dumping illegally, according to Kempin, carries with it a fine of 100-dollars for a first offense.
As the seasons change the focus changes for Merritt's Emergency Program Coordinator and with the change comes another warning. Tom Lacey says it's moved from a flood watch in the Spring, to a fire watch in the Summer and he now warns it'll soon it'll be an ice watch. Lacey says as the rivers and lakes freeze, people often venture on to thin ice causing a serious concern, especially for children. He says when the rivers start to freeze, people must stay off until it's safe.
A preliminary hearing for a 15-year-old Merritt teen charged with second-degree murder is set for today in Kamloops court. The youth was charged following the death of 28-year-old Nasir Ahmed Khokhar in Voght Park on September 25, 2009.
Merritt Bantam House had two games over the weekend. Saturday in Logan Lake, the Bantam House team won 5-1 over the host squad. Caimon Weiser had a hat trick while Logan Robertson and Aaron Tippe each added singles. Yesterday, Bantams hosted Westside #3 and lost 10-3. Cole Brown, Logan Robertson and Brittani Ketlo scored for Merritt in the defeat.

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