Oklahoma’s Burn Ban Grows

Over the past few weeks, there have been an increasing amount of grass fires sweeping across parts of Oklahoma. With only minimal chances of precipitation later in the week, counties all over the State are being placed under a burn ban. Yesterday morning KOTV, News Channel Six, posted a list of 20 counties including Creek, Payne, and Rogers that have all been placed under a burn ban. At around 2:30 Monday afternoon, the article was updated to also include Okmulgee County. If you are caught violating the burn ban that has been put into place you will receive a minimum of a $500 fine.

The growing list comes after another large grass fire caused a power outage in Inola on Sunday evening. Firefighters believe the fire started after the wind knocked down a power line causing it to spark and ignite. The wind only served to spread the fire at a rapid pace. According to Fox 23, who spoke with Inola Firefighters, the fire began around 10 p.m. At one point, the fire stretched over 2 ½ miles wide, burning acres and acres of land. Although no homes were damaged by the grass fire, most of Inola Citizens were left without power from Sunday into Monday. The Inola School Superintendent was forced to call off school on Monday simply due to the power outage.

I am sure that everyone is well aware of the lack of rain and high winds lately, but I am not sure that people understand exactly how quickly these fires take off. A few weeks ago (prior to any burn bans) I wanted to clean up the limbs in my yard from the snow and ice storms. It was going to be nice out, and since the ground was still wet from snow and ice earlier in the week I figured I would not have to worry about catching the entire yard on fire. Well, I was right about one thing, it was wet. It was so wet I may have used an excessive amount of lighter fluid to get my fire started. Eventually I had a small fire. After a while I noticed small areas of my grass catching on fire. I could not believe it! Even with all the moisture we had recently received, the grass dried out and burned quicker than all the twigs and limbs I stacked.

We encourage everyone to be diligent when working outside with anything that could create a spark. I understand that individuals who are welders or electricians encounter these problems daily, but just be aware of your surroundings. For a complete list of counties under the burn ban check out: http://www.newson6.com/story/24555522/another-oklahoma-county-adopts-burn-ban

Channing Spence

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Claremore Mourns the Loss of Mayor

Mickey with family putting up signs for the upcoming election.

Mickey with family putting up signs for the upcoming election.

This morning I received sad news that the Mayor of Claremore, and dear friend, Mickey Perry has passed away.  At the age of 66, Mickey passed away from a heartattack last night.  Honestly I am shocked, as most people who knew him would be. It was only a week ago my husband had to pull him out of our driveway, because it was too slick for him to get back up the slope (getting stuck was a result of him not listening to his daughter who told him not to go down there).  Nevertheless, I feel the need to reminisce about this great man.

Mickey and family after recieving his Citizen of the Year award.

Mickey and family after recieving his Citizen of the Year award.

Mickey has been serving the Rogers County area for decades now. He began as a patrol officer, then he worked for the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics, and eventually was promoted as the Chief of Police. Mickey retired as Chief of police at the beginning of 2011, but that would not be the last we seen of him. By April, Mickey had been elected as Mayor to the City of Claremore. Throughout his career he was also involved in other community events like the Special Olympics and “Share the Spirit”  which delivers food and gifts to those in need around the holidays. In 2012 Mickey was named as “The Citizen of the Year” by the Claremore Progress, and just this past Saturday he was inducted into the Law Enforcement Hall of Fame.

Mickey with daughter Jennifer after being inducted into the Law Enforcement Hall of Fame

Mickey with daughter Jennifer after being inducted into the Law Enforcement Hall of Fame

Anyone who knew Mickey knows that no job or title he has held was as important to him as the role of husband, father, and grandfather. Mickey’s daughter became my aunt about a decade ago, and with that he became a part of my family. Mickey was so wonderful to me! Such a sweetheart. It was Mickey who pulled a few strings (or a lot of strings) to help me cross my number one item off my bucket list. Because of Mickey I got to meet Garth Brooks while on a trip to Vegas! I cannot explain to you how happy I was! Turns out Mickey was just as excited for me he could hardly stand it. He called my Aunt first thing the following morning to see if I had called to tell her all about it. Mickey, his wife, and I met for lunch when I got home so I could fill him in on all the details.

Mickey Perry was one of the most giving, thoughtful, and respected people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. Not only will your family and friends miss you Mickey, but you will be missed by an entire community.

Elf on the Shelf hits RCI Insurance

I hope everyone was safe in the winter weather that has covered most of the U.S. this past week! Everyone here weathered the storm just fine, until they came back to work on Monday.

I’m not sure Santa just thought that there was not production coming out of the office, or maybe not enough holiday cheer going on, but he sent in the “Elf on the Shelf.”  This was the scene we walked into Monday morning.

Elf Day 1

According to the note we found his name is Auto (how fitting) and he will be keeping an eye on things through the Holiday season.  On Tuesday the Elf was no longer dangling from the garland, but from the tape dispenser on Julie’s desk.  The jury is still out on what exactly he was trying to tape.

Elf Day 2

Not everyone in the office had heard about the Elf until Wednesday when Chet came into work to this.

photo 3                             elf day 3

And Chet was clearly confused over our Elfs behavior. Chet Elf

I guess Auto was worried he may have taken it a little to far with Chet, so the next few days he took it easy on us. I am pretty sure Karen helped him clean up this mess. This morning I do believe he was just trying to help us get some work done!

skittles                          elf day 5

It is debatable if he actually sold any insurance, but we will give him an A for effort!

 

 

The New Girl

If you were thinking Zoey Dechanel then I’m sorry to say you are wrong…but take one glance at this beauty and you know it will be entertaining to say the least!

photo 1

My name is Channing. I am new to the RCI Team, and I am taking over this blog. Lucky for all of you blogging is something I have been interested in for a while now. Although my inspiration for wanting to blog does not stem from a business perspective, but mostly for entertainment purposes. Obviously I do not take myself too serious.

My goal for this blog is to keep readers informed and up to speed on insurance! What else would my goal be? After a daunting marketing meeting yesterday afternoon I think that we have some great ideas that will not only keep you informed, but hopefully entertained as well. I plan on getting a little “personal” with my RCI Coworkers as well. Don’t tell them, but yes I am planning on tossing them under the microscope from time to time. What is more interesting than the people you work with…

Since I am the “New Girl” let me tell you a bit about me. I was born and raised around “these parts,” and I could not be more excited to be working in Claremore again. In 2012 I married my high school sweetheart and we have two dogs. I promise to divulge more personal information as we move along, but one thing you should know is I will do almost anything to get a laugh. Even if that means wearing a sweater from the 90’s and a pair of pants from the bargain rack to a restaurant with the entire family.

photo 2

I am a Rogers State Alum with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Science with an emphasis in Psychology. With this degree I can read your mind (insert eye roll). After graduating college I have been in the insurance business. I have worked for two other companies before finding my way back home to RCI.

I am excited to start this new journey, and I hope that you all will be patient with me as I learn the ins and outs of blogging. Of course I want to hear from you, so please leave your thoughts and comments.

Remember 2:00 AM on Sunday, November 3

Remember 2:00 AM on Sunday, November 3

Daylight Savings Time Ends

Yes, it is that time of year again, time to change those clocks. Did you know that daylight saving time started in 1918 in the United States? It was an idea brought to the attention of Benjamin Franklin who believed “early to bed and early to rise” according to David Prerau, author of the book Seize the Daylight: The Curious and Contentious Story of Daylight Saving Time. There are mixed feelings for many Americans about the usefulness of Daylight Saving Time, how do you feel about it? Give us your thoughts in the comment section below.

 

Also: It is a good idea, while changing your clocks that you also check your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms. Checking these devices at both time changes will ensure that they are working properly and will be ready in the case of an emergency.

Fall Back

SAFE SUMMER ADVENTURES ON YOUR BOAT

The weather’s warmer, the days are longer, and
naturally, your thoughts turn more and more to your boat. It’s been covered up,
waiting on its trailer, all winter. Now you’ve decided to get it ready for
summer adventures.
Check the air pressure in the trailer’s tires. The maximum pressure is printed
on the sidewalls of the tires, and trailer tires often take higher pressure
than the tires on a car or truck.
Be sure the trailer’s safety chains or cables are in good condition, and that
they will securely attach to the rear of the tow vehicle. There should be two
chains or cables, one on each side of the hitch, and they should be long enough
to allow the trailer to turn tight corners, but not so long that they drag on
the pavement.
The Boat
Your boat’s battery should be connected to a charger for a day or so before
it’s returned to the boat. Once the winter storage cover has been removed, the
battery can be connected and secured in its acid-resistant container. Be sure
that terminals and cable ends are clean and that polarity is correct before
connecting. Inspect the propeller for any signs of damage, and have it
serviced, if necessary, before installing it. Replace any sacrificial zincs as
the manufacturer recommends. If it’s an outboard or inboard/outboard, and the
fluid in the lower unit wasn’t replaced last fall, it’s likely a good idea to
do it now. When draining the fluid, look for any sign of cloudiness, which
indicates water in the fluid. If the fluid is contaminated with water, it
usually means a seal or gasket is leaking, and the unit must be repaired.
Bearing damage can be the expensive result of water leaking into the unit’s
fluid.
If the boat has a two-stroke outboard motor, hook a hose to the motor’s
flushing attachment, and start it up on the trailer to make sure it’s working
properly. If it’s an inboard engine, check the bilge blower for proper
operation, and be sure the blower’s intake hose is correctly positioned —
below the engine, and above the normal bilge water level. Operate the steering
lock-to-lock to see if it’s operating properly. If you changed the oil in your
inboard engine or four-stroke outboard last fall, it’s a good idea to change it
again in the spring, to get rid of any moisture that collected due to
condensation during the winter months. You’ll have a chance to check for proper
exhaust water flow and battery charging while you warm the engine up for its
oil change.
Now that the servicing is done, it’s time for the spring cleaning. This should
be the most thorough cleaning the boat will get all year. Keep a “punch list”
of items you find that need attention while you’re cleaning, so you can take
care of them before the first launch. Once everything’s been serviced and
cleaned, you can bring your gear aboard. The safety equipment should be
inspected to be sure life jackets, flares, anchor, fire extinguisher, and
electronics are ready to go. Don’t forget the drain plug!
The Details
Remember to be sure your registration tags are current on your boat, trailer,
and tow vehicle. Also, make sure your insurance is up to date. Be sure to put
your insurance company’s claims phone number in your wallet, just in case.
The Launch
You got as good a look at your trailer as you could before the first trip. You
made sure the winch cable and tie-downs were in good condition and that they
were tight enough.
Be sure to take some tools and rust-proofing paint to the launch site. Then,
spend a few minutes looking at the parts of your trailer that you couldn’t see
before the boat was launched. Scrape loose paint and scale from any rusty areas
you find, and touch them up with paint. Make sure all the rollers turn easily,
and the bunks and bunk covering are in good shape.
The first launch of the season will go smoothly, and everything on the boat
will be ready to go, when you do what’s needed to give yourself and your family
a trouble-free boating season.

ACHIEVE THE IMPOSSIBLE

What could you achieve if you didn’t know what was impossible?  Mathematician George Dantzig found out as a graduate student at UC Berkeley in 1939.  Walking into a class late one day, he saw two statistics problems on the blackboard.  Assuming they were a homework assignment, Dantzig copied them down and spent several days working on them.  They seemed more challenging than usual, but after a few days he came up with the solutions and handed his paper in.

That’s when he found out that his professor had written the problems on the board as examples of two of the most famous unsolved problems in the field of statistics.  Dantzig’s solutions appeared in mathematical journals.  One year later, when talking to his prof about possible subjects for his thesis, the professor told him to simply put the two problems in a binder and submit them as is.

The story has been retold many times as an example of positive thinking; a version of it was adapted for an opening scene in the movie Good Will Hunting.