storm offers lessons for hurricane preparedness
MAY 27, 2013 -- On May 20, we were reminded that natural disasters of all kinds can bring devastation on a massive scale. In just a few seconds, the lives of Moore, Okla., residents were changed by an EF-5 tornado that destroyed entire buildings while injuring or killing residents as they took shelter.
We can't prevent natural disasters, but we can prepare for them. By being ready and knowing what to do in a disaster, we can minimize risk, reduce the time it takes to recover and most importantly, prevent the loss of life.
As response and recovery continues in Oklahoma, those of us who live in hurricane-prone areas must now turn our attention to our own preparedness efforts for the upcoming 2013 hurricane season.
This year during National Hurricane Preparedness Week, May 26 - June 1, and throughout the year, I encourage everyone in hurricane-prone areas to make a pledge to prepare and then act on the pledge and be ready in advance of the hurricane season that officially begins June 1.
We are asking you to take these simple steps: know and understand your weather risk, take action, and be an example for your family, friends and neighbors.
Join us today and pledge to prepare at www.ready.gov/hurricanes.
story behind Drum Island's piles of dirt
MAY 27, 2013 -- Ever notice the piles of dirt on Drum Island as you zoom over the Cooper River bridge from Mount Pleasant to Charleston? Seem like they've been moving around for the last few months, but for no apparent reason?
Well, there's a method to what's happening as explained in a recent visit to the 160-acre island of dredge material, or spoil, that the bridge crosses.
The S.C. State Ports Authority is preparing to raise the walls of a dirt dike that surrounds the island so that it can dispose of silt removed from berths at Union and Columbus street terminals. When the walls are around six feet taller around Drum Island, the SPA says it will be able to put dredge material on Drum Island for eight to 10 more years.
To get the island ready, a lot of dirt needs to be moved to facilitate the drying process. On the surface (at left), the dirt looks like a tan drought landscape pocked by deep surface cracks. But if you dig down just one or two feet, the dry dirt will quickly change to liquid pluff mud that is unmanageable, explains SPA project engineer Ben Morgan.
"We cut ditches across the island to lower the water table," he said. "The purpose of the ditches is to dry out the silt." Water seeps from the spoil basin into ditches and drains into Town Creek and the Cooper River through four big outfall pipes.
An excavating machine deepens ditches only after it has spread its weight across a wooden mat of support. The "mat" is a network of parallel wooden beams that look like extra-long railroad ties with metal hoops at the end. When the excavator is done with one portion of a ditch, it picks up beams from one part of the mat and moves them further along the ditch so the machine can move forward and dig some more.
It's a long process that takes patience. Months pass as the silt basin dries and operators dig and re-dig ditches to allow water to drain.
Toward the end of summer, it should be time to start moving the dried silt. First, a bulldozer -- which can operate on the cracked dirt of the island because its weight is spread across its treads -- will push piles between two drainage ditches to form a center "haul road," says lead operator Jeremy McCarren, a contractor from Calabash, N.C.
Next, a tractor will drag a special scoop along the road to scrape up thousands of pounds of dried spoil, which then is moved to the exterior of the island to build the dike higher. As the tractor takes away spoil, a bulldozer will push more dry spoil from the area between the ditches to the haul road to keep the process going. After three or four months, the dike should be at the right height to be strong enough to add more spoil to the basin for several years.
Despite all of the big earth-moving equipment on Drum Island, the huge project is pretty simple in one sense because it relies on prepping the island's basin for time and Mother Nature's gravity. When they've done their work, the machines kick into high gear to move the dirt to raise the wall.
Now, we know!
Glad to find you
To the editor:
So glad to learn about your publication from a pool buddy. I've got a lot of reading to catch up.
The public spiritedness of our underwriters allows us to bring Charleston Currents to you at no cost. Today we shine our spotlight on Kaynard Photography, a business run by contributing photographer Michael Kaynard of West Ashley.
Kaynard Photography grew from Michael's love of walking the streets of the Charleston's historic district. It developed into a passion for capturing everything Charleston through a camera lens. Kaynard can be seen walking the streets of Charleston many days from dawn to darkness. He calls his work "At Street Level." His photos are available for viewing and sale at kaynardphotography.webs.com.
ready for an evacuation
MAY 27, 2013 -- Are you ready for .. evacuation? Most of us aren't, but based on past year hurricane realities, we probably should be.
While more of us have focused on an "emergency" kit -- water, canned food, weather radio -- for sticking around, spending a few minutes now can help you save money whenever it is we are ordered to evacuate.
Evacuating is bad enough. Save yourself some money by planning ahead.
Greg Garvan of James Island is president of Money with a Mission, an 18-year-old, fee-only financial planning firm that specializes in socially responsible/ 'green' asset management. On the Web: moneywithamission.com.
Wentworth Mansion gets nation's top ranking for hotel service
Charleston's Wentworth Mansion has the best hotel service in the United States -- and second best in the world, according to Travel + Leisure magazine's new World's Best Awards survey.
"Winning this award is an incredible honor and validation for the hard work our staff does and their goals to ensure each guest leaves the Wentworth Mansion with memories of a lifetime," said general manager Noreen Marchant.
The local hotel missed being the world's top hotel for service by just 0.12 percentage points. It trailed The Peninsula in Hong Kong by 0.11 points. Rankings are based on reader votes collected in the Travel + Leisure World's Best Awards survey.
Travel + Leisure surveyed the general managers at the top 16 hotels in each region on what makes winning service. The results:
Cooking show to feature S.C. oysters, barbecue
season of Cooking Channel's "Man Fire Food" will premier 9:30
p.m. June 3 with spotlights on a McClellanville man's oyster roaster and
the tasty barbecue of Hemingway's Rodney Scott.
Mooking, one of Canada's top chefs, will be in South Carolina to learn
about traditional whole hog barbecue from Scott and about Lowcountry oyster
roasts from Oliver Thames, who invented a unique oyster roaster that piles
local cluster oysters over a metal sheet positioned over a firebox. Wet
burlap bags are placed on top of the oysters to help them steam open.
home to Scott's Bar-B-Q, Mooking will meet pitmaster Scott and his mother
has been cooking whole hog since he was 11 years old," according
to the show. "His smoke-filled pit room cooks up to 14 hogs at a
time. Roger helps Ella pull the pork and season it with their secret sauce."
Trident United Way gets top charity rating
For the fifth consecutive year, Trident United Way (TUW) has earned top marks for its fiscal responsibility from Charity Navigator, the charity evaluation website.
The four-star rating is based on TUW's organizational efficiency and capacity, and is bestowed upon a charity that "exceeds industry standards and outperforms most charities in its cause."
"Financial responsibility and accountability are part of our core philosophy, but they're just pre-conditions for the real work we do achieving our community's bold 10-year goals," said Christopher Kerrigan, president and CEO of Trident United Way.
"That is, increasing the high school graduation rate to 88 percent, helping 30 percent more people leave poverty and 25 percent more to lead healthy lifestyles."
The top rating puts Trident United Way among the top 3 percent of all charities in the country for fiscal responsibility. In addition, Trident United Way earned a 100 percent rating on Charity Navigator's Accountability and Transparency checklist.
South Carolina's streams and rivers are vestiges of her prehistoric past.
These mounds offer fragmentary evidence of the cultures that thrived before
the Europeans arrived. Five of South Carolina's Indian mounds are listed
in the National Register of Historic Places: Adamson Mounds (Kershaw County),
Blair Mound (Fairfield County), Lawton Mounds (Allendale County), McCollum
Mound (Chester County), and Santee Mound (Clarendon County).
sixteen Woodland mounds and nineteen Mississippian mounds have been identified
in South Carolina that are at least fifty percent intact. Another eleven
known sites have been destroyed or are underwater. Woodland period mounds
are located primarily along coastal rivers, while Mississippian mounds
are found along inland rivers near the fall line. Beaufort County has
the largest concentration of mounds, followed by counties located in the
Midlands. Similar mounds are found in Georgia and North Carolina.
late prehistoric period and early contact period, some of South Carolina's
mound builders were part of vast Mississippian chiefdoms. South Appalachian
Mississippian ceramics indicate that a similar culture embraced South
Carolina, Georgia, and neighboring areas. These mounds, built between
c.e. 1200 and 1500, were ceremonial, cultural, or administrative in nature
and at times were associated with villages and burials. Some of them were
also associated with the Pee Dee, Lamar, or Irene culture that flourished
ca. c.e. 1400-1700.
evidence suggests that as many as 150 mounds were present in South Carolina
at the time of European contact. In 1540 Hernando de Soto encountered
the mound dwellers of Cofitachiqui on the Wateree River. The accounts
of his journey are important documentary sources for understanding the
mound dwellers. During the Revolutionary War, the British recognized the
strategic potential of the mounds. They built Fort Watson on the Santee
Mound, which patriot forces captured in 1780. Erosion and looting threaten
the survival of South Carolina's Indian mounds.
All dressed up and nowhere to moo
We encourage you to check out our sister publications:
Charleston Currents offers insightful community comment and good news on events each week. It cuts through the information clutter to offer the best of what's happening locally.
Charleston Currents is provided to you twice a week by:
Address: P.O. Box. 22261 | Charleston, SC 29413
We hope you'll keep receiving the great news and information from CharlestonCurrents.com, but if you need to unsubscribe, click here.
© 2008-2013, Statehouse Report LLC. All rights reserved. Charleston Currents is published every Monday and Thursday by Statehouse Report LLC, PO Box 22261, Charleston, SC 29413.
Kiplinger's suggests six tips to prepare your home and finances for the coming storm season:
An historic meeting
"I am prepared to meet my Maker. Whether my Maker is prepared for the great ordeal of meeting me is another matter."
Insert your email address and click subscribe for free.
IN THE WEEK AHEAD
Free admission: May 27, Magnolia Plantation and Gardens. Active-duty members of the military and their immediate family will be able to get free admission to the attraction for general garden admission. More: MagnoliaPlantation.com.
(NEW) JAC Jazz Series: May 29 - June 7, 493 King Street, Charleston. Check out the Jazz Artists of Charleston's sixth annual jazz series here for times and prices: http://www.CharlestonJazz.com
Home is Where the Art Is: May 30 to June 9, 70 Warren
Street, Charleston. Curators have outfitted their home for a show of the
art of Tim Parsons and Jessica Charlesworth. More
Conversation with West Fraser: 6 p.m., June 3, Preservation Society of Charleston Book and Gift Shop, 147 King Street, Charleston. Lowcountry traditionalist painter West Fraser will offer his thoughts on Charleston, his style and more. Reception starts 30 minutes before the lecture. $15 for members/$20 others. More: PreservationSociety.org
Photo contest: Images due by June 6. Magnolia Plantation and Gardens is holding its annual photo contest for photos taken at the attraction between March 1 and May 31. Entry is $25. To enter and look at rules, visit the Lowcountry Photographic Club.
CONTINUING AND IN THE WEEKS AHEAD
Nighttime at the Museum: 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., June 7, Charleston Museum, Meeting Street, Charleston. Bring your flashlight to the annual event as living historians represent many time periods. The event will help history come to life for your children. Tickets are $10 for member adults, $20 for non-members; rate is half of that for kids. More: CharlestonMuseum.org
Spivey Hall Children's Choir: June 7-11, around town. The internationally recognized chorale group from Clayton State University in Morrow, Ga., will perform as part of its summer tour in local retirement homes and at Piccolo Spoleto at 3 p.m. June 9 at Grace Episcopal Church. More online.
Charleston Carifest Caribbean Carnival: June 20-23 with events including a June 22 parade led by diplomats from Trinidad and Tobago. Learn more online about the festival's broad cultural events.
Through Sept 15, Gibbes Museum of Art, Charleston. In conjunction
with Spoleto Festival USA, the Gibbes will present watercolors created
in Charleston in the early 1990s by celebrated contemporary artists Stephen
Mueller and Carl Palazzolo, who will give an opening day gallery talk
at 2:30 p.m. at the museum. Art is from the collection David and Carol
Rawle. More: GibbesMuseum.org
Bird walks: 8:30 a.m. to noon, every Wednesday and Saturday. This is the time of year that a great variety of migrating birds fly through the Lowcountry so what better time to take part in one of the regular early morning bird walks at Caw Caw Interpretive Center in Ravenel. Pre-registration is suggested. Cost is $5. Walks also are conducted on James Island and Folly Beach.Learn more online.
Noble: Envision SC
brand to government