MOULTRIE -- There are two large boxes of stadium seat cushions sitting on the floor in Colquitt County High Athletic Director Darius Dawson's office.

The label is addressed to booster club president Kent Jordan.The return address is of a company in Texas.

No one at Colquitt County High or associated with the school or the Packers Booster Club ordered the cushions. And Jordan has not been the Booster Club president for a number of years.

The cushions are not the first unwanted items to turn up at the high school. And other schools, including Coffee High, are having similar problems.

Companies from out of state get lists of merchants in a community, call them and sell them advertising on items such as calendars, posters, T-shirts, and other "spirit" items.

The local businesses that receive the calls are led to believe the caller seeking the advertising has been sanctioned by the high school.

They have not, and the local merchants may be surprised to learn the money they are spending is not staying in the community.

Colquitt County High Principal Bob Jones wants local businesses to be aware that calls from anyone seeking advertising on such items are unlikely to have been approved by the school or the booster club.

"We do not condone this," Jones said, warning the public to be aware of questionable solicitations.

Jones said that any local merchant that has questions about whether a solicitation is representing the school system should call him.

The problem has come to light with the delivery of the unordered merchandise and when the school solicits donations for legitimate projects such as the Packer Booster Club and the football program.

Recently, the school has received T-shirts with advertising from a local electrical supply company and others with advertising from a car sales business, Jones said.

The advertising was not solicited by anyone from the school system. And although the school does receive merchandise, the profits go to the out-of-state company, rather than to the school, booster club or local merchant.

Often, companies contact local merchants saying they are promoting the "local school," without mentioning the school's name or anyone associated with the school.

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