Festival focuses on
going the extra mile for the arts
By KYLE LAHM
North Charleston Mayor's Office on Education, Youth and Family
Special to CharlestonCurrents.com
14, 2010 -- One way to keep warm this Martin Luther King Day weekend
is by running a half-marathon, 5K, 10K, kids run, fun run or even
taking a bike ride - it's all happening Jan. 15 through Jan. 17
at the Riverfront Race Festival. The festival, which helps supports
the arts in local schools, also includes music and dance performances
along the race routes and a chance to help the Lowcountry set a
Guinness World Record for serving seafood.
Riverfront Race Festival benefits the Youth Endowment for the Arts,
a local nonprofit that supports fine-arts programming in Charleston
County schools. Performance groups from the area and our schools
will dot the length of the course, along with water and first-aid
stations. Groups from Pepperhill Elementary, R.B. Stall High School
and Chicora Elementary, as well as professionals like Adande African
Drummers, are all participating as performers along the course.
from all over the Lowcountry have been running a mile each week
to prepare for their "final mile" on Friday at 4 p.m.
as part of the Roper St. Francis Kid's Half Marathon. Then on Saturday,
the main events - the half-marathon, fun run, 10K and the premiere
Hunley Hustle 5K - all kick off at 8:30 a.m. Finally, join us for
a 30- or 62-mile bike ride starting at 8:30 a.m. on Sunday. We'll
kick off the race with a stirring performance by the Charleston
Symphony Orchestra Gospel Choir and remarks from North Charleston
Mayor Keith Summey.
of the Saturday races start on Noisette Boulevard near McMillan
Avenue, 10 Storehouse Row at the Navy Yard at Noisette. The Navy
Yard has a few old roads and several old railroad crossings, but
major hazards will be marked and staffed with volunteers to help
participants run the route with ease. Also at 10 Storehouse Row
is our fitness expo, packet pick-up, walk-up registration and a
pre-race meal sponsored by Olive Garden on Friday evening after
the kids' run at 5 p.m.
race travels through the Navy Yard, North Charleston's Olde Village
and Park Circle, Riverfront Park and the Cooper River Marina. Beverages
and shrimp and grits for all volunteers and participants (available
for a small fee for onlookers) will abound as U.S. Foods, Berlin's
and Garrett High School Culinary Arts students serve up tasty bowls
of the traditional Southern favorite. Organizers are hoping to hit
the Guinness World Record for the most seafood served in eight hours!
finish line will include performances by the Charleston County School
of the Arts' "Fighting Gnomes" improv group, local rockers
Sol Driven Train and more.
don't have to be a runner to enjoy the fun. Volunteers are a very
important part of this event! To register to volunteer or participate,
or call 303-3334.
us provide quality cultural arts experiences to Charleston area
children by going the extra mile for the arts this weekend. The
Riverfront Race Festival is also the first step in producing the
first-ever Charleston Marathon, coming in January 2011. Do you dare
to do the Charleston? Stay tuned!
Lahm is the coordinator of the Mayor's Office on Education, Youth
and Family for the city of North Charleston.
word (just one) of advice for frost-bitten gardeners
ANN THRASH, editor
14, 2010 -- With the weather expected to warm up (finally!) in the
next few days, you might be tempted to get outside and start lopping
dead-looking branches off shrubs or pulling out piles of collapsed
pansies. But before you pick up those clippers or gardening gloves,
listen to just one word of advice from Clemson Extension Master
Gardener P.J. Gartin: "Patience."
hard as it might be to leave damaged-looking plants alone right
now, that's exactly what Gartin, who lives in downtown Charleston,
is recommending for local gardeners. "You don't want to do
anything yet, because if we get a warm spell and the sap starts
to move through them
and then we get another cold spell,
those plants are going be more vulnerable because those cuts are
like open wounds," she says.
while some plants might look like they're mostly a pile of brown
leaves, more could be going on than meets the eye. "Things
may look like piles of ugly, but there's probably some baby stuff
down in that pile that needs to be protected," she says.
runs and rides her bicycle around the city on a regular basis, so
she's always checking out the landscape as she goes, and the damage
she's seen on some of our favorite Lowcountry shrubs might not be
as bad as it looks, she says. "I've seen some oleanders that
have a lot of leaf burn, but if the stems are still alive, the leaves
will come back on those stems," she says. As for the azaleas
that are so characteristic of Charleston in the spring, don't worry.
"Some of them look yellow right now, but that's because the
cold ties up the iron in the soil, so the leaves aren't getting
their dose of chelated iron. They're not going to die - they're
just going to look awful."
camellias, she says, it's simply been too cold for them to bloom.
The best thing you can do for them right now is to collect any spent
blossoms lying on the ground around the plants. If those blooms
have even a tiny bit of camellia flower bright, a disease that rapidly
turns the petals brown, it can spread into healthy plants through
those spent flowers.
aspect of the freezing weather that hasn't gotten much notice, Gartin
says, is how dry it has been. "People have been saying, 'Oh,
this cold snap was different because it lasted so long,' but more
damaging than that is that the humidity for so many nights was below
50 percent," she says. Usually this time of year it would be
in the 60 percent range, but on many nights recently, it was in
the mid-30-percent range.
pansies aren't as perky as these little Johnny-jump-ups, don't
blame the cold weather. You're probably not watering them enough.
(Photo by Ann Thrash)
seen some dead pansies, and there's no excuse for a dead pansy,"
she says. "They didn't die from the cold; they died from dessication.
They needed water." She has pansies in concrete urns at her
house and has watered them every other day, using moisture meters
to monitor them. "Part of the reason they're going to pull
through is because we've kept them watered," she says.
patience you need for your shrubs will also come in handy in dealing
with your lawn "If your grass is brown, don't panic. It's supposed
to be brown," Gartin says. "Part of our problem with our
warm-season lawns here is that we don't let them rest and rebuild
energy in their root system." In other words, we fertilize
too soon. Don't let the first moderate January weekend lure you
into that mistake; instead, wait until you start seeing a good bit
of green before you fertilize, she says.
speaking of lawns, if you're hoping the cold might help eliminate
some of the moles, mole crickets, chinch bugs and other assorted
critters that plague us when the weather warms, well, no such luck.
"I wish!" Gartin says. "It might slow them down a
little, but it's not going to have much effect. If I'm a mole cricket,
I'm just going to burrow down deeper in the ground." Mosquitoes,
she points out, survive winters in the Alaskan Tundra, so don't
hold your breath that this little cold snap will do us much good
the lasting lesson we can take from this cold spell is to approach
it the way one of those mole crickets would: Just burrow in a little
deeper and bide your time for now. "A lot of people are going
to rip out things because they're not going to have the patience
to see if they're going to turn green again, but I don't think that
in the long run this weather is going to be that bad," Gartin
says. "Maybe the verbena that people have kept alive for the
last three years isn't going to make it, but really, just wait.
Let Mother Nature take her course. Plants are remarkable things.
They have more ways of surviving than we give them credit for."
Thrash is editor of CharlestonCurrents.com. You can reach her by
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public spiritedness of our underwriters allows us to bring CharlestonCurrents
to you at no cost. In this issue, we turn the spotlight on West
Of newspaper, the West Ashley's community newspaper that highlights
community news, opinions, schools, dining, arts and more for the
62,000+ people who live west of Charleston's Ashley River. West
Of also publishes the James
Island Messenger for people who live on James Island. Visit
West Of online or via Twitter.
to get nation's first Garden of Forgiveness
will become the first city in the nation to have a Garden of Forgiveness,
an effort led by the priest in charge of the relief ministries at
St. Paul's Chapel in New York City after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist
Rev. Lyndon F. Harris spearheaded efforts from Sept. 15, 2001, through
June 2, 2002 as the chapel was converted into a multifaith relief
center for the rescue and relief workers, as well as victims' family
members. St. Paul's offered food, massage therapy, grief counseling,
and chiropractic and podiatric care around the clock. By the end
of the operation, more than half a million meals had been served
is now the executive director of the Garden of Forgiveness, an interfaith,
educational nonprofit dedicated to teaching forgiveness as a strategy
for peacemaking and conflict transformation. He will be in Charleston
on Jan. 18 and Jan. 19 to work with Hands On Charleston, part of
a national network of volunteer groups that promotes voluntarism
and is working to make Martin Luther King Day, which is Jan. 18,
a day of service.
Jan. 18, Harris and Charleston Mayor Joseph P. Riley Jr. lead a
10:15 a.m. ceremony at Philip Simmons Park at America and Columbus
streets to commission Charleston as the first city to receive a
Garden of Forgiveness in the United States. The garden will be part
of the park and will incorporate ironwork by those carrying on the
legacy of Philip Simmons. Harris will also attend the Martin Luther
King Jr. Business and Professional Breakfast at the Gaillard Auditorium
on Jan. 19.
you'd like to get involved with Charleston's Garden of Forgiveness,
contact Wade Thompson with Hands On Charleston at 303-6155, e-mail
the Web site.
of the County' remarks focus on challenges
County Council Chairman Teddie E. Pryor used a brief "State
of the County" address on Jan. 12 to make a promise to county
residents: "We will continue to work with county staff and
our elected and appointed officials to do everything possible to
streamline our efforts and ensure that county services are maintained
and our financial standings hold strong," he stated. "This
is the promise we make to the citizens of Charleston County."
address was held during Tuesday's County Council meeting. It's
posted online here.
used the address both to look back at some successes during the
tough fiscal year past and to look ahead to the ongoing challenges
of budgeting and maintaining services in a still-struggling economy.
He noted, "By the end of calendar year 2008, staff had predicted
the economic downturn and its impact on funds coming to the county,
and reduced budgeted expenditures by almost $10 million."
the current year's fiscal budget, he said, "Council was able
to maintain existing levels of basic services to the community,
not increase the county's property tax millage, budget for the opening
of the Detention Center expansion, and maintain a compensation and
benefits package sufficient for attracting and retaining a qualified
and motivated work force." This is the 10th consecutive year
that the millage rate has remained steady.
will help entrepreneurs grow their business
who want to kick their business into high gear can get some advice
and support through a series of courses being offered at the Charleston
Metro Chamber of Commerce.
a coalition of state and local agencies, is offering the FastTrac
GrowthVenture program to beginning Jan. 25 at the chamber office,
2750 Speissegger Drive, Suite 100, in North Charleston. Classes
meet from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Mondays for 10 weeks.
by the Kauffman Foundation, one of the most prestigious entrepreneurial
research and development organizations in the country, FastTrac
GrowthVenture is a facilitated class in which entrepreneurs learn
business concepts, work in groups to complete projects, evaluate
business models, then apply that knowledge to their own company
while still in class.
week a guest speaker who has been successful as an entrepreneur
will speak to the class, offering a "been there/done that"
perspective on surviving the obstacles involved in starting a business.
Topics will include exploring market opportunities, making strategic
decisions, using financial tools, refining your product or service,
leading your organization, and managing operations for growth. By
the end of the program, students will have developed a three-year
strategic business plan.
cost of the program is $295. For details or to register, visit http://www.FastTracSC.org
or call Mary Dickerson at 805-3089 to register. Chamber members
who are interested should check with their account executive about
special offers that may be available.
us your critique
If you have a review of a book, movie, restaurant or local arts
endeavor, please send no more than 150 words to editor Ann
Thrash. Make sure to include your name and full contact information.
gold rice is named for the magnificent golden color of the ripe
plants in early autumn. However, so wealthy did it make the early
planters of the lowcountry, it could also refer to its financial
importance. By the early 1720s rice had become the major crop in
the colony, with some 6 million pounds shipped to England annually.
As early as 1710 British writers were declaring its superiority
as the "weightiest, largest, cleanest, and whitest
the Habitable World." Botanists and historians are uncertain
of its origins, but the plant flourished in the lowcountry for two
the middle of the nineteenth century, more than 75,000 acres of
land were producing rice in the lowcountry, yielding 160 million
pounds. By 1860, 70 percent of the 5 million bushels produced in
America were being grown in South Carolina. Plantation owners demanded
slaves from the west coast of Africa, where wetland rice farming
was common. The West Africans cleared the land, built the elaborate
systems of sluices and dikes, planted the grain with the traditional
African heel-and-toe technique, flooded the fields at proper intervals,
chased destructive birds away, harvested the rice by hand, wove
the winnowing or "fanner" basket from bulrushes and sweet
grass, and carved the enormous wooden mortars and pestles for hulling.
From seed to table, Carolina gold was the domain of the enslaved.
South Carolina was renowned for its rice kitchens with elaborate
Creole dishes prepared by accomplished African cooks.
the Civil War, the demise of rice culture in South Carolina was
gradual and complete. Rice was introduced into other states, where
mechanical equipment that was too heavy for the marshy soil of the
lowcountry replaced expensive hand labor. Floods, the silting caused
by upstream cotton farming, and a series of destructive hurricanes
between 1893 and 1911 put an end to commercial rice production in
Excerpted from the entry by John Martin Taylor. To
read more about this or 2,000 other entries about South Carolina,
check out The South Carolina Encyclopedia by USC Press. (Information
used by permission.) To
read more about this or 2,000 other entries about South Carolina,
check out The
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With the Civil
War sesquicentennial approaching -- April 12, 2011 is the 150th
anniversary of the firing on Fort Sumter -- The Citadel is offering
a series of talks on different aspects of the war in the Lowcountry.
Part of the Daniel Library Friends' spring lecture series, the talks
are free and open to the community. All begin at 6:30 p.m. in Bond
Hall Room 165 on campus. Call 953-7691 for details.
23: Historian Gordon Rhea will tell the story of the South
Carolina infantrymen who served under Brig. Gen. Samuel McGowan
and became known as "McGowan's Brigade."
9: Maury Klein, author of "Days of Defiance," will
look at the tense days from Secession in December 1860 to the
battle for Fort Sumter in April 1861.
23: Kyle Sinisi, professor of history at The Citadel, will
talk about The Citadel's role in the war.
13: Author and professor Emory Thomas will look at events
and people in Charleston that played pivotal roles in the war.
27: Authors Fran Hawk and Brian Hicks, both of whom have written
books about the submarine Hunley, will discuss the submarine's
the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without
Greek philosopher (384 BC - 322 BC)
Week: Jan. 11 through Jan. 17, various local restaurants.
More than 30 local restaurants are taking part in South Carolina's
first statewide Restaurant Week, sponsored by the Hospitality Association
of South Carolina and, locally, the Greater Charleston Restaurant
Association. Discounts and offers vary; for details and a list of
participating restaurants, visit
this site online.
Reception: 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Jan. 14, South Carolina
Aquarium. The Charleston Metro Chamber will host the reception to
provide the community a chance for informal networking with local
town councils, mayors, state legislators and federal legislators.
Leaders who helped secure the Boeing facility will offer special
presentations. Cost: $54 for chamber members, $65 nonmembers. More.
Park Tour: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Jan. 16, Two Pines Park near
McClellanville. A Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission
naturalist and historic specialist will lead a preview tour of the
new Two Pines county park site, an 812-acre covered with pine flatlands
and bottomland hardwoods. Open to ages 12 and up; a registered,
paid chaperone is required for participants younger than 15. Cost:
$12 Charleston County residents, $15 nonresidents. More
info/registration or 795-4FUN (4386).
ONGOING AND SOON
House Wine Dinner: 6:30 p.m. Jan. 18, Old Village Post
House, Mount Pleasant. Wine dinner featuring wines from Schug Winery,
with special guest Michael Cox, the winemaker at Schug. Menu includes
pork belly, barramundi, grilled lamb chop and garlic sausage, and
vanilla bean cheesecake with Oreo cookie crust. Cost: $58 plus tax
and gratuity. Reservations (required): 388-8935 or here
Creatures" Signing: 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Jan. 21, Blue
Bicycle Books, 420 King St. Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl, authors
of the young-adult novel "Beautiful Creatures," which
is set near Summerville, will sign books. "Beautiful Creatures"
opened at No. 3 on the New York Times best-seller list (Chapter
Books), and Warner Brothers has acquired the screen rights. More
Art of Dueling': 7:30 p.m. (new time) Jan. 21, Charleston
Museum. Museum Curator of History Grahame Long will give a presentation
titled "Two Pistols, Two Seconds: The Art of Dueling in South
Carolina." Discover why it has been argued that Charlestonians
participated in more duels than any other community in the United
States. Free and open to the public. More
info or 722-2996.
for Pets: 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Jan. 22, Charleston Crab House,
145 Wappoo Creek Drive. Oyster roast to benefit Pet Helpers with
100 percent of proceeds going to the Pet Helpers Adoption Center
and Spay/Neuter Clinic. Cost: $20 adults, $10 kids. More info: 795-1110,
"The Miracle Worker": Various shows, both matinee
and evening, Jan. 22 through Feb. 7, Footlight Players Theatre,
20 Queen St., downtown. The Footlight Players open the new year
with the play based on the life of Helen Keller, who was deaf and
blind, and her extraordinary relationship with governess Annie Sullivan.
Tickets: $25 adults; $22 seniors; $15 students; $10 children 10
and under. Call the Footlight Players Box Office at 722-4487 or
John" Premiere: 6:30 p.m. Jan. 24, Terrace Hippodrome,
Aquarium Wharf. Join the stars of the new movie "Dear John,"
which was filmed in Charleston, for a private screening that is
also a benefit for Carolina Autism. Event includes a red-carpet
arrival by some of the movie's stars and an official after-party
at the South Carolina Aquarium. Cost: $250 per person (tax deductible
as allowed by law). Tickets/more
Dinner: 6 p.m. Jan. 25, Wescott Country Clubhouse, Wescott
Plantation, 5000 Wescott Club Drive, Summerville. Dr. John Clarkin
of the Tate Center for Enterpreneurship will speak to a dinner meeting
of the American Business Women's Association on the topic "What
We Can Learn from Entrepreneurs." Networking at 6 p.m., meeting
at 6:30 p.m., dinner served during meeting. Open to any interested
businesswomen in the Lowcountry. Cost: $15, payable at the door.
Reservations (required): Make
online or send
Oyster Festival: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Jan. 31, Boone Hall
Plantation, Mount Pleasant. Gates open at 10:30 a.m. for the event,
sponsored annually by the Greater Charleston Restaurant Association
to raise money for the Ronald McDonald House, Hollings Cancer Center,
Travel Council and Charleston County Science Materials Resource
Center. Oysters sold by the bucket (three to four dozen) for market
value and served with cocktail sauce and crackers. Other food available
as well, along with beer and soft drinks. Live local music, oyster-shucking
and eating contests, children's area and more. Free parking. Tickets:
$10; available online
Wild Game Dinner: 7:30 p.m. Feb. 10, Halls Chophouse,
434 King St., downtown. One of several new events associated with
the Southeastern Wildlife Exposition. Five-course dinner with wine
pairings. Menu includes local oysters, quail, bison ribeye and more.
Cost: $115/person. Tickets: Buy
online or phone 723-1748.
in Business Conference: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Feb. 12, Charleston
Marriott. The Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce and the Center
for Women will present the conference, which focuses on integrating
female business professionals into mainstream networks and expanding
their business opportunities by providing access to successful business
leaders in the region. Cost: $75 for chamber or Center for Women
members; $100 for nonmembers. Registration:
Evening with Jack Hanna: 7 p.m. Feb. 12, South Carolina
Aquarium, 100 Aquarium Wharf, downtown. Spend an evening with animal
expert Jack Hanna during his visit to the Lowcountry for the Southeastern
Wildlife Exposition. Guests will be able to meet Hanna, enjoy hors
d'oeuvres and cocktails, and hear stories about his animal adventures
around the world. Cost: $85 per person ($75 for aquarium members,
who can order by calling 723-1748 and giving their member number).
More info: Online
Picky Eaters Group
On Jim Fisher
Rural Mission's needs
Fish to buy
guide book for kids
looks at success
all of the cuts
look at summer camps
should get out
at White House
for King Day