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Maryville students head back to school


(WBIR) It's back to the books for Maryville City School students.

Students at Foothills Elementary hopped off the bus Wednesday morning ready to take on another school year. But this year, the district is launching a new initiative - a transition to digital learning call iReach.

The goal is for all students across the district to have laptops or iPads in the next two years. Many teachers spent the summer training on new the technology, and the principal said they're ready.

Grocery store wine will be on ballot in Maryville & Alcoa


Add two more communities to the list where wine lovers may soon be able to pick up a bottle or two at the grocery store.

The Blount County Election Commission confirms that they have verified enough signatures to get the measure on the ballots in Maryville and Alcoa.

Sen. Alexander kicks off campaign bus tour of Tenn.


(WBIR) U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander kicked off Friday a 35-stop bus tour of Tennessee.

The two-week "Standing up for Tennessee" bus tour began in Maryville, the senator's hometown. Before he left from Sullivan's on W. Broadway Avenue in Maryville at 11:30 a.m., he voted at the Blount County Commission.

Alexander said that the tour was inspired by his political mentor, Howard Baker Jr., who toured the state by train and bus during his re-election campaign.

Trainer accused of horse soring back in court


(WBIR-Maryville) The man accused of abusing Tennessee Walking horses at his Maryville barn was back in court Wednesday.

Larry Jo Wheelon is accused of "soring" the horses, or using chemicals and other methods to accentuate the horse's signature gait in competitions.

Wheelon is a recognized name in the Walking Horse industry, with accolades and awards for his work in the field.

Gun-friendly Maryville restaurant gets national attention


A Maryville restaurant owner who says guns are welcome on her property is gaining national attention.

Sharma Floyd posted a sign at Shiloh Brew and Chew more than two months ago telling customers they are allowed to carry a weapon inside the establishment.

Alcoa students head back to school Monday


(WBIR) Most school districts in East Tennessee won't head back to class for a few more weeks, but Alcoa city schools will kick off another school year on Monday, July 21.

Alcoa is one of the first districts in the area to head back to school. Other districts will start in the coming weeks.

Classes at Alcoa Elementary School will start at about 7:50 a.m. Monday.

Boaters look for calmer waters by jet skis


(WBIR) A group of East Tennessee boaters are asking their fellow water sportsman to be extra careful after what they call several "close calls" on the lakes.

It's a battle of futility for some boaters.

Finding the happy medium of who can use their wake and where.

"The lake belongs to everybody, that's not what we are saying. We just want a little common courtesy and a little common sense," said boater Bob Schmidt.