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During a Sunday service, David Morelock kisses his son, Edric, 3, with wife, Sarah, at the Nebo Christian Church, in Nebo, KY, Oct. 22, 2006. The church, not the building, dates back to 1838. The small congregation consists mostly of generations of families.

Welcome Home

story by Lianne Milton

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Jaime Kerns, 22, dances with John Quarles, 34, at Casa Mexicana, Friday, Oct. 20, 2006. "I come here every other week," Quarles says. There are only two places in town to go out for dancing and drinks. "I go there when I don't come here."

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The colorful forest of autumn, behind the Ruby Lodge, a bed and breakfast inn, reflects off the Spring Lake water in the evening after sunset, Friday, Oct. 20, 2006. The changing landscape of the lake and surrounding 74-acre forest is home to red fox, deer, geese, beavers, squirrels, birds, blue heron, and owls. "Its kind of like an oasis for wildlife," says Joe Thomas, of the Ruby Lodge.

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Sonia Escamilla, who is on a business trip from Mexico, enjoys granola with yogurt and strawberries at the Hammock-Moore House, a Victorian inn on Main Street in Madisonville. Shirley Thomas, who owns the B&B, is in the background.

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While waiting for the eggs to cook, Shirley Thomas reads the obituary page in the local paper, at the Hammock-Moore House, Thursday, Oct. 19, 2006. Thomas, and her husband, Joe, own two bed and breakfast inns.

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Hands full of groceries and a bag of dog food, Shirley Thomas closes the gate of her pickup outside her Madisonville home and bed and breakfast inn, Ruby Lodge, Thursday, Oct. 19, 2006. Thomas prepares for a bridal luncheon hosted by the Lodge. Her and her husband, Joe, an antique collector, bought the 74 acre land, which includes a lake, two years ago.

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Shirley Thomas digs out a beaver dam that blocked a creek causing the lake water to rise two feet, behind Ruby Lodge at Spring Lake, Friday, Oct. 20, 2006. Thomas and her husband, Joe, own two bed and breakfast inns. "I have my to-do list and I have his," she says, while her husband is away at a gun show. Now the list includes preparing a 24-person luncheon, running a restaurant, managing 24 rental units in town, and digging out a beaver dam.

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Shirley Thomas goes over details of a dinner party with Laurie Cox, who will host a rehearsal dinner for Cox's daughter, at the Ruby Lodge, Saturday, Oct. 21, 2006. Thomas and her husband, Joe, own two bed and breakfast inns in Madisonville.

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As a bridal luncheon disperses, Shirley Thomas laughs while catching up with friend Libby Bacon, left, at the Ruby Lodge, one of two bed and breakfast inns she and her husband, Joe, own, in Madisonville, KY, Saturday, Oct. 21, 2006. Thomas prepared and cooked for a party of 24 people, which included homemade quiche, cinnamon rolls, and banana and cranberry breads.