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Chattahoochee Chatter: Spongebob rumbles at Spring Fling

Is Spongebob Squarepants a lover or a fighter?

If you guessed lover, you're wrong.

If you're a young Spongebob Squarepants fan, chances are you won't be thrilled with this news.

Police say a man dressed as Spongebob Squarepants was engaged in a Saturday night fight with another individual at the annual Spring Fling fair in the Columbus Civic Center's parking lot.

Around 10:30 p.m., police were called to the fair about a man dressed as the cartoon character that is known for his lovable personality. The caller said he was "possibly looking for a fight."

When officials arrived on the scene, they witnessed "Spongebob" involved in a fight with another individual, Sgt. Anthony Locey said.

Just as Columbus authorities began to stop the fight, Anthony Gilliam, who was not Spongebob, allegedly stepped in and swung at one of the people involved in the fight, Locey testified in Columbus Recorder's Court Monday morning.

Locey didn't mention what sparked the fight involving one of the most beloved cartoon characters, but we're sure it was an upsetting event for any children who witnessed it.

Gilliam pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct. He was given 30 days in the Muscogee County Jail suspended upon the payment of $250.

It's unclear if Spongebob faces any charges or if he'll continue living in a pineapple under the sea.

Two months ago, we Chatted about the wonderful way the Britt David Magnet Academy staff chose to spend the money it won from Julia Brown, who pledged $500 to the Muscogee County School District school with the highest percentage of its staff to vote in the November general election. Britt David finished first with 94 percent. Principal Clara Davis announced the staff elected to use the money to buy new American flags for MCSD schools that need theirs to be replaced.

Now, we have another reason to Chatter about this inspiring story.

The money enabled Britt David to buy 15 flags. The following schools requested and received a new flag: AIM, Allen, Britt David, Dawson, Dimon, Double Churches Middle, Fort, Fox, Johnson, Jordan, Reese Road, Richards, Rothschild, Spencer and Wesley Heights.

And among the thank-you notes Britt David received was a precious letter from eighth-grader William Knight, who raises the American flag at Richards.

"Our school has needed a new flag, and thanks to your kind donation, that need has been met," William wrote. "We can now start each day with beautiful red, white and blue stripes swaying proudly in the wind. This flag will bring pride to our school."

And tears to our eyes. Who says we here at Chatter Central ain't sentimental?

We may be sentimental at times, but we sure as heck don't care for someone to mess with our things.

Reporter Mike Owen usually sits at a long media table at the back of Council Chambers when Columbus Council meets. On Tuesday, when council met as the Budget Review Committee, Owen arrived to find that his table had been commandeered for city officials to sit at while facing council.

So he "borrowed" a small end table from a corner of the chambers, found a stray chair and set up shop. Just before the meeting, a city department head walked by and pondered, "Budget cuts?"

And finally, this week in Chatterland, we ponder this: Just what in the heck is a dinglewood?

Is it an area of the city, the name of a historic home, a state of mind?

Well, coming up on April 19, it will be the moniker of a disc golf course. That's the day MidTown Inc. and the city's parks and recreation folks serve up disc golf instruction and games, along with (pew!!!) a Diaper Derby and a "Spring Bike Around."

And it all takes place in none other than -- you guessed it -- Dinglewood Park, located behind Locos restaurant off Warren Williams Road near 13th Street, according to an email from MidTown Inc. program director Ann Miller.

The event's dedication and the Diaper Derby will take place at the park with the 9-mile casual bike tour, starting at 3 p.m., highlighting the distinctive and diverse architecture, life and landscape of MidTown's historic homes, businesses and schools. Cost is $10 for those ages 10 and older; under that are free. Cost for the bike ride and derby are $10.

For more information, visit www.midtowncolumbusga.org or email annmiller@midtowncolumbusga.org.

And, remember, let's keep it safe hangin' out in the Dinglewoods, err, at the park.

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