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February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 1

Is it February already? Wow, this year is moving at warp speed! Thanks for taking a few moments out of your busy day to read this month’s issue of Lexington Life. There’s definitely a lot going on in Lexington these days. I never thought I’d look forward to seeing road construction, but I’m excited to see the construction beginning on Columbia Avenue and Highway 1. Widening those intersections will help traffic flow much more smoothly and alleviate much of the congestion that develops at the Rush’s intersection (otherwise known as Old Chapin and Hwy 378). Valentine’s Day is nearly upon us, and I’d like to wish

my blushing bride a Happy Valentine’s Day! Donna is back working at Lexington Life again, after a year and a half hiatus at WLTX-TV. She is stepping in for Annette Sudduth, who left us to spearhead the Mathnasium franchise in Lexington. Annette was a true pleasure to work with, and she will be missed. But her true passion is helping to improve the educational process, and math holds a special place in her heart. If your child needs some extra help in math, Annette would be happy to offer some free advice on how to make a difference. Reach her at annettesudduth@gmail.com or 356-6103. On a more somber note, I’d like to offer sympathies to the

family of Bob Wilkins, who passed away last month. Mr. Wilkins was a local attorney who also published Sandlapper Magazine for many years. With Sandlapper, Bob and Rose Wilkins truly captured the heart and spirit of South Carolina. The magazine’s in-depth stories were interesting, introspective, and had an enormous influence on me when I began Lexington Life. One of my most enjoyable experiences was “talking magazine” with Mr. Bob during an

contents COVER STORY 20 2013 Best of Lexington Life

FEATURES

10 Pray for Kennedy 30 Lexington’s Most Eligible 42 Valentine’s Events 46 On Love & Marriage: Lester & Jerri Newton 52 Chocolate: What’s Not to Love? 58 Barricades David Clark

The Shevchiks pose with Sen. Tim Scott, who recently visited Lexington Town Hall.

interview for an article about Sandlapper Magazine. Thanks for everything, Mr. Bob. You will be missed.

15 Speaking of Health Lexington Medical Center 16 Faith Matters Ruth Cannon

DEPARTMENTS 3 From the Publisher 5 Events 7 Lexington Leaders Brittany Owen 56 Spice of Life Valentine’s Recipes 60 Faith in Action St. Paul Missionary Baptist

COLUMNS 6 Financial Strategies Stratos Wealth Partners Publisher & Editor -In-Chief Todd Shevchik toddshevchik@gmail.com Sales Manager Anne Reynolds lexliferabon@yahoo.com Account Executives Misty Floyd mistyfloyd1@gmail.com

Teresa Taylor teresaptaylor@gmail.com

Website Designer Paul Tomlinson

EDITOR Allison Caldwell allison.caldwell@live.com

Contributing Writers Allison Caldwell, Kristen Carter, David Clark, Ann Marie Hubbard, Jackie Perrone, Marilyn Thomas

Editorial Assistant Tiffanie Wise

Donna Shevchik shev26@aol.com

GRAPHIC DESIGN Jane Carter

Contributing Photographers Blink357 Photography

L-R: Anne, M

isty, Tiffanie at Lexingto , Teresa and Allison Happy Vale n Florist. ntine’s Day!

Contact Us: 225-B Columbia Avenue, Lexington, SC 29072 • 803.356.6500 • info@lexingtonlifemagazine.com

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February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 3

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February February 8-10 Columbia Women’s Show: SHE Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center Three days of fashion, beauty, cooking, entertaining, crafts, healthy living and shopping. $8 adults; $4 ages 6-12; $5 college and military; $12 two-day pass. SheCola.com. February 9 We’re Talking . . . Girl Stuff The Harvest (378 campus), 10-11:30 a.m. Dawndy Mercer Plank from WIS-TV will share at this monthly ladies gathering. Childcare available through age 10. Please join us! (803) 808-6373. February 9 Finish It 4 Kennedy 5K Run/Walk Lexington High School The LHS baseball team hosts this fundraising event to support Kennedy Branham, a Lexington middle-schooler undergoing treatment for a malignant brain tumor. Contact Jennifer Parsons at starsandstripeskarate@yahoo.com or (803) 465-1746. February 16 Richard Culliver Benefit Event Lexington Country Club, 7-11 p.m. You may have seen his story on WIS, or follow Richard’s Journey on Facebook. Sevenyear-old Richard Culliver was diagnosed with inoperable brain cancer in October; since then, the Lexington and Midlands communities have reached out to support the entire family. Enjoy music by the O’Kaysions, a silent auction, special guests and more! Call DT Cromer at 466-5298.

February 16 The Little Black Dress Wine & Cheese Affair Batesburg-Leesville Leisure Center, 7:00-10:30 p.m. $25 per person includes wine, hors d’oeuvres, music, dancing and silent auction. Proceeds benefit scholarships for local students. Hosted by the Batesburg-Leesville Woman’s Society. Call (803) 413-2437. February 18 Free Health Screenings St. John’s Lutheran Church, 7:30-10:30 a.m. Sign up today for free health screenings by Lexington Medical Center for cholesterol/ lipid profile, glucose, hemochromatosis, blood pressure, and PSA. Lexington Spinal Care will also offer free massages. Call 8922765 for an appointment.

February 28, March 1 The Little Mermaid Lexington One Performing Arts Center, 7 p.m. White Knoll High theater students present Disney’s classic tale. $10 adults; $5 students and senior citizens; children 5 and younger are free. March 9 Fourth Annual Lexington Technology Center FFA Tractor Show Lexington Technology Center, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. Fun for the whole family! Enjoy free children’s games, a petting zoo, and a tractor parade at 1 p.m. 2421 Augusta Highway; contact Tommy Harmon at (803) 8213032.

February 23 Lexington’s Race Against Hunger Saxe Gotha Presbyterian Church, 8:0010:30 a.m. Register now for a 10k run, 5k fitness walk/run, or a one-mile fun run to support charitable organizations in the Midlands. Lexrah.org. February 23-24 18th Annual Battle of Aiken 1210 Powell Pond Road, 8:30 a.m. – until Civil War history comes alive with 20 cannons, 100 cavalry horses and 1,000 liv­ing history experts and re-enactors. BattleofAiken.org or (803) 642-2500.

Have an event for our monthly calendar? Email lexlifeevents@gmail.com.

In Memory of Bob Wilkins 1933 - 2013

The staff of Lexington Life Magazine pays tribute to Robert Pearce “Bob” Wilkins, a true champion of Lexington and the Palmetto State. We are grateful for the many contributions he made to our community through the years, and for the rich legacy he leaves to all of us in the print and publishing world. Thank you, Bob! Our sincere condolences to Ms. Rose, the Wilkins family, and countless family and friends. www.lexingtonlifemagazine.com

February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 5

Greg David Founding Partner & Wealth Advisor

Problems Solved? The fiscal cliff was temporarily averted by a last-second deal. The compromise resolved the tax elements, but delayed addressing spending and the debt ceiling until February 2013.

Founded in 1925, we know what it takes to do business in the Carolinas.

For 88 years, Elliott Davis has advised businesses on how to run efficiently, grow wisely, be more profitable. Our team provides everything from audit and tax solutions to highly specialized advisory services across the spectrum of industries.

Specifically, the Act contains the following major provisions: • Individual income taxes: The Bush tax cuts are permanently extended for individuals except those with taxable income greater than $400,000 ($450,000 for married couples), which is a change that will affect less than 1 percent of Americans. • Capital gains and dividends: Top rates rise to 20 percent for individuals with taxable income greater than $400,000 ($450,000 for married couples). • Personal exemption reductions: Reinstated were limitations on itemized deductions and personal exemptions for taxpayers with taxable incomes greater than $250,000 ($300,000 for married couples). • Estate tax: The estate tax rate moves up to 40 percent, but the exemption remains at $5 million, annually indexed for inflation. Despite the headline that taxes remain the same for most, taxes paid moves higher for virtually all wage earners due to the elimination of payroll tax cuts. In 2011 and 2012, workers share of payroll tax was cut from 6.2 to 4.2 percent. Starting in 2013, this goes back 6.2 percent. The Tax Policy Center estimates an average tax increase of $1,784 for households making between $100,000 and $200,000. Even though the cliff was averted, the debt ceiling and sequestered spending cuts need to be addressed by late February. The good news? There may be clarity around tax policy, which could trigger consumer and business spending that’s been on hold and hopefully bringing some market growth in the near term. However, there remains much to do to overcome the contentious decisions that Washington delayed addressing, instead of fixing. Securities offered through LPL Financial, member FINRA/SIPC. Investment advice offered through Stratos Wealth Partners, Ltd., a registered investment advisor and a separate entity from LPL Financial.

Jim David, Greg David & Stephen Sturkie 5080 Sunset Boulevard, Suite A Lexington, SC 29072 (803) 386-0307 6 | LEXINGTON LIFE | February 2013

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by Jackie Perrone

Brittany, Chad, and Stella Owen.

Brittany Owen She’s officially a “woman to watch,” but you’ll have to move quickly to keep up with her. Brittany Owen is blazing a trail across the Midlands in her chosen profession as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA), and in a variety of community improvement projects. A native of Columbia, Owen holds two degrees from the Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina: a B.S. in Business Administration, and a Masters of Accountancy. “I just took a shine to accounting right away,” she reports, evidenced by a 4.0 GPA in both degree programs. “Now I’ve developed that into a specialty within my profession, focusing on closely-held businesses as well as commercial construction companies.” Forget the mental image of your stereotypical CPA with horn-rimmed glasses, green eye shadow, and a forbidding stare. This effervescent, stylish young woman can command a meeting or an audience as she pursues her goals in business and in the community. Her employer, Elliott Davis, LLC in Columbia, pronounces her “widely known and well respected.” www.lexingtonlifemagazine.com

Proof of this was demonstrated when she was named one of three Women to Watch by the South Carolina Association of Certified Public Accountants last October. She was the sole honoree in the Emerging Leader category, recognizing young CPAs on the rise who have made significant contributions to the accounting profession, their workplaces, and their local communities. At Elliott Davis, Owen manages a large client base in a broad variety of industries, and also coordinates recruiting programs with the University of South Carolina. Her civic and community activities include Chair-Elect, United Way Young Leaders Society; Leadership Lexington County, class of 2013; Treasurer, Lexington Young Professionals; Treasurer, Lexington Festivals; Board Member, Lexington YMCA; member, Lexington Chamber of Commerce and Lexington Business Network. She maintains an impressive roster of professional affiliations as well, including the American Institute of Certified Public Accountant, the South Carolina Association of CPAs the American

Society of Women Accountants, and Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc. “Brittany helped our office reach 100 percent participation as chair of our United Way Campaign,” points out Jason Caskey at Elliott Davis. “The Midlands, and the Lexington area in particular, have benefited from her leadership skills.” Brittany, her husband Chad, and their precious dog Stella enjoy life at Lake Murray, boating and visiting with friends. Gamecock football keeps them heavily occupied in the fall. A favorite travel spot is Abaco Islands in the northern Bahamas. All these activities are scheduled around the Holy Grail of Tax Season, winter and spring up to April 15. n Editor’s Note: This marks a departure from our typical 70+ demographic for our Lexington Leader feature. We’ll continue to feature seniors, young professionals, and nonprofit leaders in 2013. To recommend a Leader for consideration, please email allison.caldwell@live.com or call (803) 3566500. February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 7

Lexington School of Music Celebrates Their Grand Opening at the Old Mill Grand Opening Celebration to be held Thursday, February 7 through Sunday, February 10 Since 2003, Marty Fort has operated the Columbia Arts Academy on Rosewood Drive in Shandon. What began as a one room guitar studio called “Marty Fort Guitar Studio” has grown into the largest private music school in the state of South Carolina, with over 650 students ages 4and up taking guitar, piano, voice, bass, drums, ukulele, and rock band classes. On January 14th, the Columbia Arts Academy opened its second location, the Lexington School of Music, in Suite A2 at the Old Lexington Mill next to CrossFit Iron Mary’s Gym. Director Marty Fort says about the expansion: “We’re very excited to be in Lexington. It’s 8 | LEXINGTON LIFE | February 2013

an addition we’ve wanted to make for years. So many of our teachers and clients live in Lexington, so it was a natural fit. The Lexington Old Mill has a lake right outside our front door, plenty of parking, and a really modern upscale space for teaching lessons. It’s going to be a great addition to the Lexington Fine Arts Scene. We’ve just opened our doors on Monday and we already have 50 students, so the response has been loud and fast.” There are a lot of music schools in the Midlands area, but Fort has worked hard to create a “whole” experience for music students. “It’s a lot more than just a teacher and a room. The music lesson experience we give here includes great customer service to the parents, including communication on how

their child is doing. For adults, they get first class treatment from the office to make sure everything is going smooth with their lessons. We are one of the only schools in the Midlands that has full time office staff to assist our clients for just music lessons.” The Academy holds recitals every May and December because one of the things that is most important to Fort is that students get to perform in a first class recital hall with a Steinway grand piano. Technology is also a big part of lessons at both the Columbia Arts Academy and Lexington School of Music. Fort is finishing the installations of for $10,000 worth of LED monitors in each classroom. The monitors have cables that can attach to iPods, iPads, or laptops. This allows students to have a modern and engaging lesson using music teaching apps, music software, Skype, and more. “One of the things that has really set up apart is our focus on providing lessons that are fresh, new, and engaging. There are so many great teaching apps out there now that I felt we had to update our teaching rooms with LED monitors. By doing so, our students have never run the risk of being bored by their lessons. It’s a challenge to engage children or adults, but by integrating technology such as teaching apps from the iTunes store, GarageBand, ProTools, you name it, we’re providing a cutting edge lesson experience in the Lexington area. Both locations have the monitors installed so everyone is encouraged to stop by and tour the schools. www.lexingtonlifemagazine.com

The school is open to everyone ages 4 and up. With private lessons in voice, guitar, piano, bass, drums, banjo and ukulele, there’s something for everyone and it’s never too late to start. The school also holds Rock Band classes at their Rosewood location. The rock band students are busy preparing for their Rock Recital at Jillian’s in the Vista on Sunday, March 3rd. The event is free, family friendly and open to the public.

Everyone is invited to attend the school’s grand opening weekend celebration: Thursday, February 7 12-8 p.m. Friday, February 8, 11-7 p.m. Saturday, February 9 10-6 p.m. Sunday, February 10 1-6 p.m.

Lessons are being held now, so interested students should call: 803-929-7867 or visit www.lexingtonschoolofmusic.com www.lexingtonlifemagazine.com

February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 9

Continue to

On February 23, 2012, family members gathered around 13-year-old Kennedy Branham’s hospital bed to sing Happy Birthday while her mother, Erin, met privately with an oncologist who shared the young teen’s dire diagnosis. Following MRIs and a craniotomy, the results were conclusive: Kennedy had stage-four glioblastoma: a malignant brain tumor. Just two weeks after she began suffering from an upset stomach and severe headaches, the Branham family suddenly found themselves grappling with this overwhelming information. “It was the worst news of my life,” recalls Branham. by Marilyn Thomas Photos courtesy of Erin Branham

Not long after, a group of family members and close friends met to plan activities to support the Branhams as they battled for Kennedy’s life. Almost immediately, the

10 | LEXINGTON LIFE | February 2013

Pray For Kennedy campaign took on a life of its own and spread throughout the Lexington community. Things began happening in both obvious and unforeseen ways. These

ongoing efforts helped ease the financial stress of mounting medical costs, and also raised awareness of the difficulties cancer patients and their loved ones must face. All kinds of events have been sponsored for Kennedy’s cause. Countless barbecue plates, hamburger lunches, pancake breakfasts, and spaghetti dinners have been served. Proceeds from a huge garage sale, golf tournaments, and benefit concerts were donated. T-shirts, magnets, and bracelets have been sold to raise funds and, most importantly, to remind everyone to keep Kennedy in their prayers. www.lexingtonlifemagazine.com

Signs of Support As many locals know, the Lexington High baseball team has embraced Kennedy and her cause. The team will host a Finish For Kennedy 5K run on February 9, 2013, beginning at 9 a.m. at Lexington High School. Registration is still

how God has shown his presence through the baseball team, and through all those who have prayed for Kennedy. Through it all she has changed a lot of people’s lives, which gives meaning to the situation.” The Monroe family has been close to the Branhams

“There are no words that can come close to explaining how the community has

embraced and supported us.” open; contact Jennifer Parsons, a fitness instructor and mother of a ball team member, at starsandstripeskarate@yahoo.com. The cost is $30 for the public and $20 for Lexington High School students, and all proceeds will be used to offset the Branhams’ medical expenses. “The public response has been great,” says Parsons. “Come just to exercise and support Kennedy. It’s a great way to start off a new year’s resolution.” Other individuals have mailed encouraging cards to Kennedy’s home, and churches throughout the area continue to lift up prayers and send small gifts. “These acts of kindness and support have brought us a lot of comfort,” says Branham. “As a family, we’ve talked about

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since before Kennedy’s birth. Because of the special bond they share, they have personally endeavored to ensure that Kennedy fulfills her childhood dreams. After her diagnosis and before her treatments began, they quickly raised money for Kennedy to visit Discovery Cove and swim with dolphins. This summer, Leigh Ann Monroe and her daughter E r i c a — K e n n e d y ’s best friend—boarded a plane with the Branhams and flew to Paris, France. “I’d never flown out of the United States,” Kennedy re-

L-R: Kennedy in Paris, at the LHS prom with Rivers Bedenbaugh, at Discovery Cove in Orlando, and with her brother, Parker. Inset, left: A local baseball team shaved their heads to support Kennedy.

February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 11

Kennedy and her best friend, Erica Monroe.

veals. “It was really fun to go to Paris.” With Kennedy’s year of French class and a phone app, the group maneuvered their way to places such as the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre. Kennedy and her mom, along with her brother Parker and father Charlie, are greatly appreciative for the love and concern dem-

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“With all the trials, God is good, and people are still good, too. They still give even though times are hard.” onstrated by all of Lexington. “There are no words that can come close to explaining how the community has embraced and supported us,” declares Branham. “With all the trials, God is good, and people are still good, too. They still give even though times are hard.” Kennedy is keenly aware of the sacrifices and encouragement the community continues to provide. With quiet sincerity, she says, “I just want to thank everyone for helping me and supporting me.” “Erin and Kennedy realize how good the community has been to them, and they want to give back,” says Monroe. She tells how the Branhams shared a Thanksgiving dinner

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with another Lexington family whose child had been recently diagnosed with cancer. Moving Forward— In God’s Hands In the meantime, Kennedy has undergone surgery to resection the tumor, which could not be completely removed because of its critical location. She has also received radiation and chemotherapy treatments. After every other cycle of chemotherapy, she must schedule an MRI to monitor the tumor’s status. Over the summer, brain scans revealed that the tumor had shrunk. In November and January, MRIs showed that it had not grown. Currently,

Kennedy is able to participate in a clinical trial, a recommendation of the Duke University Medical Center and the Mayo Clinic that’s available as long as the tumor remains stable. Should growth occur, they may seek medical assistance from a cancer research center in Texas. Although she experiences migraines, fatigue, and other side effects from her medical treatment, Kennedy still smiles and keeps a positive outlook by continuously assuring those around her. “I just know that I’m going to be okay.” This experience has “opened my eyes and my mind and my heart,” asserts Fred McCurdy, Kennedy’s grandfather and

the retired Santa of Lexington. “The best thing people can do is pray, and be more aware of other people having this cancer.” He encourages others to “share kind words or a smile. Just do something for them— not just for Kennedy. There are people everywhere who need this help.” The family has hopes that Kennedy’s medical successes will help others who suffer from this same malady. Still, as Kennedy prepares to celebrate another precious birthday this month, the family covets additional prayers as her medical treatment continues. No matter what, Branham says their faith in God will sustain them. “Our only choice is to put it in His hands.” n For recent updates on Kennedy’s medical condition, follow Pray4Kennedy on Facebook.

February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 13

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by guest columnist William D. Brearley, Jr., MD, FACC Lexington Cardiology, a Lexington Medical Center physician practice

The Doctor Is In Working the Beat: Women’s Hearts Statistics show a woman is more than five times likely to die of a heart attack than breast cancer. Heart disease is the number one killer of women in our community. Learning about our hearts should be a top priority. Heart attack symptoms in women can be atypical. Chest discomfort is most frequent, however other less recognized symptoms include back pain, fatigue, breathlessness and arm or joint pain. Women do not always present with the classic feeling of the “elephant on your chest,” which is more common in men. Misdiagnosing these symptoms as being caused by stress or a hectic schedule can be deadly. I’ve heard several women say, “I never thought I’d have a heart attack.” No one thinks it’s going to happen to them. Unfortunately, that’s not true. More than 200,000 women in our country die each year from heart attacks. Women should have an annual physical with a blood pressure check and lipid panel. Symptoms and cardiovascular risk factors should also be reviewed. Your blood pressure should be less than 140/90, with lower targets for certain conditions such as diagnosed coronary disease. The top number is systolic pressure — the amount of pressure that blood exerts on vessels while the heart is contracting. The bottom number is diastolic pressure — the amount of pressure while the heart is relaxed. A lipid panel is the measurement of different components of cholesterol in your blood. Cholesterol is a fat-like substance in your bloodstream. There are two types: LDL is known as “bad” cholesterol because it contributes to plaque formation in arterial walls. This plaque can narrow your arteries or rupture, causing a heart attack. HDL is called “good” cholesterol because it carries cholesterol to your liver, where it’s removed from your body. There are different target levels of LDL cholesterol, depending on risk factors and existing conditions such as diabetes or known coronary artery disease. In low risk patients, LDL should be less than 160 mg/dL. HDL should be greater than 40 mg/dL, and triglycerides should be less than 150 mg/dL. Exercising and limiting saturated fats in your diet helps to lower your cholesterol. Don’t ignore symptoms; talk to your doctor. Exercise regularly, don’t smoke, and eat nutritious foods. Be a positive example to others. Heart disease risk factors including diabetes and obesity rates are climbing in our community, in adults and in children. Let’s work on keeping our hearts healthy. www.lexingtonlifemagazine.com

February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 15

by guest columnist Ruth Cannon Office Administrator

SATURDAY NIGHT Church Every Saturday Night at 6 pm

Each year when February rolls around, everyone’s attention starts focusing on words and expressions of love. As I sit down to write this article, I begin to think of all the things I love: my husband gently holding my hand, my three-year-old son asking for snuggles, my infant daughter learning to smile. Or a phone call from my sister, lunch with my grandpa, walks in the park on a spring day, naps on a rainy day, and seeing a movie with friends. I hope you’ll also think about the things and the people you love, and the ways you can show love. I realize that the word love may bring about different emotions and varying thoughts. We all have our own ways to express and give love. As I observe the acts of love around me — a parent holding a newborn baby, an elderly man pulling out a chair for his wife, a note sent to a friend, or a call to a loved one overseas — I can’t help but think of the greatest act of love ever shown. This great act of love was when God sent his son Jesus to live a perfect life on this earth and die a painful, sacrificial death to save us from our sins. Jesus sacrificed His life so that we could have eternal life. Thankfully, He didn’t stay dead; He rose from the dead and defeated the grave! And those who believe in Him will meet Him one day in heaven. That’s quite an act of love! But Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross isn’t just a one-time act. God IS love. It’s the very essence of who He is. God’s love is the greatest kind of love. It’s a perfect love: one that never fails, never gives ups and never lets us down. It’s an unconditional love, with no restraints and no rules. There’s no checklist to receive His love, and no obligations to keep His love. Nothing that do or have done can take away the love He gives. And the best part: it’s free, and it lasts forever! I don’t know anywhere else to find a love like that! My hope is that in this season of love, you’ll begin to love and feel loved. Love others, love yourself, love life. Act in love. Be assured that there’s a God in heaven who loves you. He offers His free gift of love to each one of us, and it’s available to you today.

Follow Pastor Ken on Twitter at @pkharvest www.twitter.com/pkharvest The Harvest • 4865 Sunset Blvd. Lexington, SC 29072 • 808-6373 • www.the-harvest.org Saturdays: 6 p.m. (378 campus) Sundays: 378 campus 9 a.m., 10:30 a.m. and Noon Whiteford and Northeast campuses, 10:30 a.m.

Busy on Sunday mornings or just want to sleep in? We have an option for you:

Saturday Night Church

at The Harvest. Full array of opportunities and childcare provided.

THE-HARVEST.ORG 4865 Sunset Boulevard | 808-6373 16 | LEXINGTON LIFE | February 2013

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February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 17

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Best of Lexing More than 6,500 ballots ballots were cast for our fourth annual

Best of Lexington Life competition.

Thanks to everyone who took time to mail ballots and

congratulations to this year’s winners!

vote online, and

Best Aesthetic Physician Dr. Dee Carter Best After School Program Rhythmics Performing Arts & Athletics Best Allergist Allergy Partners Best Alterations Zebra Cleaners Best Apartment Complex Reserve at Mill Landing Best Appliance Store Lowe’s Best Assisted Living Facility Agape Senior Best Audiologist Lake Murray Hearing Best Auto Body Shop John Harris Best Auto Repair Shop Corey’s

Lexington Life Magazine would like to thank all

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tonRevealed! Best Auto Insurance State Farm, Hal Girard Agency Best Auto Rental Service Enterprise Rent-A-Car Best Auto Service Department (Dealership) Herndon Chevrolet Best Bank BB&T Best Barber Shop Roger’s Barber Shop Best Bartending Service Blue Flame Best BBQ Restaurant Hudson’s Smokehouse Best Bicycle Shop Bike To Nature

Best Bookstore Books A Million Best Breakfast IHOP Best Bridal Store David’s Best Buffet Hudson’s Smokehouse Best Burrito Moe’s Best Cardiologist Dr. Amy Epps, Columbia Cardiology Best Carpet Store Carpet One Best Car Wash Frank’s Best Catering Company Hudson’s Smokehouse Best Cell Phone Company Verizon

our readers for voting in the 2013

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Best Chicken Wings Buffalo Wild Wings Best Chinese Restaurant Miyo’s Best Chiropractor Conner Chiropractic Best Local Clothing Store for Men Craig Reagin Clothiers Best Local Clothing Store for Women Mae’s of Lexington Best Coffee House Starbucks Best Coin and Collectible Dealer Gilbert Coin & Collectible Exchange Best College (two-year) Midlands Technical College

Best of Lexington!

February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 21

Best of Lexing

Best College (four-year) USC Best Online College University of Phoenix Best College for Working Adults Midlands Technical College Best Cosmetology School Lacy School of Cosmetology Best CPA Tripp Newsome, Newsome & Company Best Craft Store Hobby Lobby Best Credit Union SAFE Best Dance Company Chosen Dance Academy

Best Day Spa Urban Nirvana Best Daycare Rhythmics Performing Arts & Athletics Best Deli Groucho’s Best Dentist Palmetto Smiles Best Department Store Kohl’s Best Dermatologist Palmetto Dermatology Best Dessert TCBY Best Dietician Laura Wooten, Bodyshop Athletics Best DJ Mike Willis DJ Entertainment Best Dry Cleaner Zebra Cleaners Best Electrician Mike Crapps, M/C Electric

Best Emergency Room Lexington Medical Center Best Exterminator Clark’s Pest Control Best Facial Elante Day Spa Best Family Attorney Huntley Crouch, Cofield Law Firm Best Fast Food Rush’s Best Fitness Center Gold’s Gym Best Florist Lexington Florist Best Frame Shop Michaels Best Frozen Yogurt Yumilicious Best Funeral Home Caughman-Harman Best Furniture Store Scott’s

Voted Best Dry Cleaner & Alterations

101 Ivy Park Lane Lexington, SC 29072

2361- G Augusta Highway 11107 U. Broad River Rd. Lexington, SC 29072 Irmo, SC 29063

(803) 957-7780 22 | LEXINGTON LIFE | February 2013

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tonRevealed! Best Garden Center (local) Wingard’s Nursery & Garden Center Best Garden Center (national) Lowe’s Best Glass Store Absolute Glass Best Golf Course Golden Hills Best Greek Restaurant Grecian Gardens Best Grocery Store Publix Best Gym Gold’s Gym Best Hair Salon for Adults Salon Confessions Best Hair Salon for Kids Sharkey’s Cuts for Kids

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Best Hair Stylist Zena Panico, Zena Salon Best Hamburger Rush’s Best Happy Hour Travinia Italian Kitchen Best Hardware Store (local) Three Fountains Ace Hardware Best Hardware Store (national) Lowe’s Best Heating & Air Company All American Heating & Air Best Home Builder Essex Homes Best Home Cleaning Service Merry Maids

Best Hospital Lexington Medical Center Best Hot Dog Sandy’s Best Hotel Hampton Inn Best Ice Cream Shop Cold Stone Creamery Best Insurance Company Brad Giles, Allstate Insurance Best Interior Design Company M. Gallery Interiors Best Investment Firm Stratos Wealth Partners Best Italian Restaurant Travinia Italian Kitchen

February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 23

Best of Lexing

Best Japanese Restaurant Ganbei Best Jewelry Store Jewelry Warehouse Best Kid-Friendly Restaurant Flight Deck Best Kid’s Meal McDonald’s Best Landscaping Company Gregory Landscape Services Best Litigation Attorney Kirk Morgan, Walker & Morgan, LLC Best Lake Murray Boat Touring Service Spirit of Lake Murray Best Makeup Store Merle Norman Cosmetic Studio

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Best Manicure/Pedicure Today’s Nails Best Massage Urban Nirvana Best Mattress Store Michaelis Mattress Company Best Meat Store Old Timey Meat Market Best Mexican Restaurant Monterrey Best Milkshake Rush’s Best Monument Designer Memorial Design Best Movie Theater Pastime Pavilion, Regal Cinemas Best Neighborhood Settlers Point at Lake Murray

Best OB/GYN Dr. Stacey Smithson, Lake Murray OB/GYN Best Office Supply Store Office Depot Best Oncologist Dr. Steven Madden, Lexington Oncology Associates Best Ophthalmologist Dr. Edward Mintz, Columbia Eye Clinic Best Optometrist Dr. Greg Bailey, Eye Care of Lexington Best Orthodontist The Braces Place Best Painter Endless Possibilities Best Park Virginia Hylton

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tonRevealed! Best Pediatrician Palmetto Pediatrics Best Personal Trainer Brandi Newman, Twisted Sisters Bootcamp Best Pet Groomer Lazy Creek Discount Pet Supply & Grooming Best Pet Hospital Grace Animal Hospital & Pet Lodge Best Pet Kennel or Boarding Facility Grace Animal Best Pet Supply Store Lazy Creek Discount Pet Supply & Grooming Best Physical Therapy Practice Moore Orthopaedics

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Best Pizza Mellow Mushroom Best Place for a Birthday Party Monkey Joe’s Best Place to Buy a Boat Captain’s Choice Marine Best Place to Buy Collegiate Merchandise Jewelry Warehouse Best Place to Buy Eyeglasses Walmart Best Place to Buy Hardwood Floors Floor Boys Best Place to Buy a Car (new) Herndon Chevrolet Best Place to Buy a Car (used) Hudson Brothers

Best Place to Buy a Motorcycle Jack’s Custom Cycles Best Place to Buy Organic Products 14 Carrot Whole Foods Best Place to Buy Outdoor Furniture Lowe’s Best Place to Buy Pageant Apparel Dazzles Best Place to Buy Paint Lowe’s Best Place to Buy a Pool Griffin Pools and Spas Best Place to Buy Prom Dresses High Class Formal Wear & Accessories Best Place to Buy an RV John’s RV

February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 25

Best of Lexing

Best Place to Buy a Sprinkler System P2 Landscaping & Irrigation Best Place to Buy Tires Frank’s Discount Tire Best Place to Buy Tools Lowe’s Best Place to Sell Gold Gilbert Coin & Collectible Exchange Best Plumber Plumb Krazy Best Private School Northside Christian Academy Best Radio Personality Ken Martin, Lake Murray Radio

26 | LEXINGTON LIFE | February 2013

Best Radio Station 93.1 The Lake (Lake Murray Radio) Best Real Estate Attorney Anthony Panico Best Realtor Mike Steed, Kent Flowers Realty Services Best Ribs Hudson’s Smokehouse Best Roofing Company Stanick Sheet Metal & Roofing Best Salad Zaxby’s Best Senior Living Community Agape Senior Best Shoe Store Rack Room Shoes Best Shopping Center Columbiana Centre

Best Siding Company Saluda Aluminum (Leesville) Best Sign Company Sun Printing Best Skilled Nursing & Rehab Center Agape Senior Best Sporting Goods Store Sandy Run Outdoors (Gaston) Best Steak LongHorn Steakhouse Best Southern Cooking Lizard’s Thicket Best Subs Firehouse Subs Best Sushi Antai

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tonRevealed! Best Sweet Tea McAlister’s Deli Best Tanning Salon Ultratan Best Temporary Employment Service Roper Staffing Best Towing Service Wingard Towing Service Best Unique Gift Shop The Nifty Gifty Best Upholstery Shop Kathy Nordan Foster Marine & Home Upholstery Best Veterinarian Dr. Tim Loonam, Grace Animal Hospital & Pet Lodge

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Best Wait Staff Mellow Mushroom Best Wedding Photographer Sarah D’Attoma, D’Attoma Studios Best Wedding Planner Phyllis James, Mitchell House & Gardens Best Wedding Venue Mitchell House & Gardens Best Weight Loss Program Weight Watchers Best Wine Selection Sam’s Fine Wine & Spirits Best Women’s Gym The Firm

Thanks again to everyone who voted for their favorites— be sure to congratulate the winners, and tell them you saw them in Lexington Life! Look for the Best of Lake Murray Life in our sister publication, coming out next month!

February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 27

Thank you for voting us “Best Bank in Town.” There is no higher accolade than our own clients’ vote of confidence. We are honored that the readers of Lexington Life Magazine have ranked BB&T the best bank in Lexington. This award affirms the time-tested values that have defined BB&T for more than 140 years. And, we welcome the opportunity to continue sharing knowledge in ways that help build a strong future for the individuals, families and businesses of Lexington. BBT.com

B A N K I N G

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Member FDIC. Only deposit products are FDIC insured. © 2013, Branch Banking and Trust Company. All rights reserved.

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February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 29

Valentine’s Day, bachelors and bachelorettes To celebrate

we searched high and low for a few local

to pose for a fun, light-hearted photo shoot. We’re proud to introduce three eligible Lexington singles, and appreciate their willingness to participate in our matchmaking schemes.

Thanks also to Marty Rae’s and Travinia for providing the perfect backdrops.

30 | LEXINGTON LIFE | February 2013

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Tia Williams [29] General Manager and Marketing Director, SERVPRO 2013 President, Lexington Young Professionals “What makes me laugh? My friends and family, Parks and Rec, comedian Brian Regan, sneezing pandas and my incredibly goofy dog. With the ups and downs of running a business, finding humor in life keeps me sane. I want to honor my grandfather as third generation owner of SERVPRO by taking our business to the next level, and giving back to my community along the way.�

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February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 31

Chris Maxwell [28] Head PDI Tech, John’s RV “My father has been the biggest influence in my life. Most people say that I’m just like him, looks and personalitywise. I wouldn’t be the man I am today without him. My biggest goal right now is to get into law school. No matter where I end up, I will try my best at whatever it is I do.”

32 | LEXINGTON LIFE | February 2013

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February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 33

Kay Favati

[“Southern ladies never reveal their age, but I do qualify for AARP!”] Orthodontic Assistant, Braces Place Co-Owner, Blue Flame Bartending Company and School of Bartending “I enjoy playing tennis, cruising Lake Murray, cooking for friends, making people smile, and creating a happy environment. So many movies have impacted me, but Star Wars has to be my favorite. It’s a classic that includes all the elements of a great flick: good vs. evil, adventure, comedy and romance.”

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Looking for Academic Excellence with a Biblical Perspective? NCA offers a truly balanced education: Spiritual | Academic | Social |Athletic SCISA Accredited – Exceed State Standards – Small Class Size Now offering 9 Sports, Art & Music Programs! “We are so amazed at the positive changes in our children after just a few months at NCA. Their academic and spiritual growth has enormously exceeded our expectations. Our children have a new found desire to go to school and learn! - Drs. Randy and Billie Jean Colby

So the generations to come might know Him. Psalm 78:4

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Better The Lives Better Village at The Village Better at at Life The Village it Can it really be different? it really really be be different? different?

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Looking for something special to do with your sweetie this Valentine’s Day? Check out these heart-themed events to enjoy with your significant other, family or friends!

February 8-9 or 15-16 All-Inclusive Amore Celebration Doubletree by Hilton, 2100 Bush River Rd. Enjoy a fabulous overnight getaway to the gorgeous Doubletree by Hilton on Bush River Road: deluxe guest room, 4-course dinner for two, entree wine pairings, keepsake menu, gift and dessert! $229 per couple, or $299 per couple if you choose to add tickets to the SC Philharmonic’s Eternal Love performance on Saturday, February 9. Rates are all-inclusive (including all taxes and service charges). 744-0130. February 9 Lexington’s Father-Daughter Valentine’s Dance Lexington High School, 6:30-9:30 p.m. Hosted by Friends of the Lexington Main Library. $30 per couple, $10 for each additional daughter; $40 per person after February 5. Cash or check only. 261-8697. February 9 Cupid’s Chase 5K Run Finlay Park, 8 a.m. registration, 10 a.m. run Run with a heart at the Cupid’s Chase 5K

in Columbia, one of 21 locations nationwide. Great prizes, giveaways and the best way to make a love connection in the new year! $35 registration by 2/8/13; $50 day of event. Proceeds benefit Community Options, a national nonprofit that develops housing and employment support for people with developmental disabilities. Follow Cupid’s Chase on Facebook for complete details. February 9-10 Valentine’s Paddle Get Your Gear On, 1 p.m. Don’t miss this unique and romantic adventure! Bring someone special on this river canoe trip and enjoy wonderful views and wildlife. No experience necessary. All trips start at the GYGO store (208 Candi Lane, Columbia.) Trips fill up quickly; reservations required. Call 799-0999 or email getyourgearon@yahoo.com. February 14 Valentine’s in Casablanca: Cinema’s Greatest Romance Harbison Theatre, 8 p.m. Casablanca is a classic film and a legendary love that has stood the test of time. Watch Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman on the big screen and enjoy champagne, des-

sert, and complimentary photos before the movie. $12 per person. Enter online by February 11 to win a dinner for two at one of five participating restaurants. The theatre is located at 7300 College Street in Irmo (Midlands Tech campus). HarbisonTheatre.org. February 14 Valentine’s Day Dinner Cruise The Spirit of Lake Murray, 7:00 - 9:30 p.m. Enjoy a romantic dinner cruise on Lake Murray! Meal choices include peppercorn beef tenderloin or fresh tilapia, rice pilaf or broccoli casserole, Greek salad, and cheesecake for dessert. $64 per person; board 6:30 p.m. 730-3044 or LakeMurrayCruises.com. February 14-15 Love on the Wild Side Riverbanks Zoo, 6:30 p.m. Roses are pretty and chocolate is sweet, but a Valentine’s date at Riverbanks just can’t be beat! Riverbanks Zoo and Garden invites you and your sweetheart to experience Love on the Wild Side. New this year, the Zoo is offering two wildly romantic evenings. Both nights include dinner prepared by Riverbanks’ executive chef, cash bar, and a walking tour of the zoo. $100 per couple. Riverbanks.org.

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February 2013 | LEXINGTON 1/25/13 LIFE | 10:15 43 AM

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February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 45

On

Love

& Marriage by Allison Caldwell

You have to grow together, and learn to bend and work together. It can’t be about self anymore. It has to be about ‘us.’ Lester Newton

46 | LEXINGTON LIFE | February 2013

Anyone who has lived in the Midlands for any length of time can probably sing along with the advertising jingle for Congaree Home Center: “We keep our promises to you!” That slogan is not only true of the successful family-owned business Lester Newton founded in 1991; he and his wife Jerri have also kept their promises to each other. In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, Lexington Life is honored to share their love story. Lester and Jerri were classmates at Lower Richland High School in the early 1950s; Lester was one year ahead of the girl first introduced to him by his sister, Juanita. “She said ‘This girl likes you,’ so I called her,” he recalls. Lester was a talented athlete, lettering in football, baseball and

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track. “He had a chartreuse and yellow Nash Rambler,” said Jerri. “He was the top dog at Lower Richland with that car.” The two began dating, although specific details are sketchy by now. “Our first date was probably at the old Starlite drive-in theater that used to be at the corner of Devine and Fort Jackson,” said Jerri. “That was a big hang-out for all the high school kids.” “And we always ate at Doug Broome’s restaurant,” said Lester. “You could get hamburgers for 10 cents apiece back then.” They had known each other for about two years when they decided to get married; he was 19, and she was a week shy of turning 17. They lied about their ages to obtain a marriage license — no ID verification was required at the courthouse in those days — and eloped at a little country church in Denmark, SC. The groom wore his stepfather’s suit, and the bride was decked out in her blue and white polka dot Easter dress. “Our witness was a nice woman who ran a boarding house there,” said Jerri. “I wore a little white hat of hers, so I had something old, new, borrowed, and blue.” “All I knew was that I was deeply in love, and I was going to marry her. We paid the preacher $35, and spent a week in Orlando,” said Lester. “My grandmother lived there, so we visited with her. Then we came back to Columbia and rented an apartment. I had to work two jobs just to make enough money to pay the bills and buy groceries.” The first of four sons was born about 10 months after the wedding. Sixty years, 10 grandchildren, and 12 great-grands later, the rest — as they say — is history. “It wasn’t always easy,” said Lester. “I worked all the time to take care of my wife and my family, and she worked hard

taking care of me and those boys.” Long before he started Congaree Home Center, Lester Newton built a solid reputation as an honest, dependable insurance adjuster, collections manager, and heavy-duty truck dealer and financer. “If I shake my hand or sign my name, I do it. You can’t say that about many people anymore.” Through the years, he also found time to coach little league baseball. Fifteen years’ worth of young players are all grown up now, and still recognize him in public from time to time. Jerri never missed a game, and also served as a Boy Scouts den mother for many years. As a family, the Newtons spent time raising horses, cows and produce on the family farm, enjoyed many weekends on Lake Murray, and were always active in church — Lester and Jerri have been members at Beulah United Methodist in Sandy Run for 26 years. “We just looked out for our family, and looked out for each other,” said Jerri. “Next thing you know, we’re celebrating 60 years together in July. I don’t know where the time went.” “You see lots of people these days who fell in love, and then somehow fell out and can’t, or won’t, work things out,” said Lester. “When you make a commitment, sometimes you have to learn as you go, and be willing to go back and straighten it out. You have to grow together, and learn to bend and work together. It can’t be about self anymore. It has to be about ‘us.’” n

n. e h c t i K r From ou thering-

ty. your next oguas-casuasl s r a P r u Yo Let us makoer spontaynaend effourtelests. ur g ned ovel plan r mal-as l ell as yo w or fo r you as fo

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What counts in making a happy marriage is not so much how compatible you are, but how you deal with incompatibility. Leo Tolstoy

For catering & private dining call Wendy our Catering Director today! 888-745-1171 catering@traviniaitaliankitchen.com Lexington • Columbia www.traviniaitaliankitchen.com February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 47

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Feel the music. VibrAcoustic technology brings the transformative forces of music and water 速 together into a bathing experience like no other. Just plug in and play music with a smart phone, tablet, MP3 player or by streaming wirelessly. Then lie back and soak in the sound as rhythms pulse both above and below the waterline, sending sound waves resonating throughout your body.

Visit our local KOHLER Showroom to experience the technology for yourself and receive 10% off the Underscore VibrAcoustic bath. Or learn more by visiting kohler.com/vibracoustic.

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You’ll be hooked! Coming Soon to Lexington!

McBites

®

New Fish McBites are sure to get you hooked! Enjoy crispy, tender pieces of poppable white flaky Pollack. Conveniently packaged for today’s busy lifestyles, New Fish McBites come in three sizes – Snack (3 oz.), Regular (5 oz.) and Shareable (10 oz.) and will be available as a Happy Meal option as well. More wholesome choices to love!

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February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 51

What’s Not to C

hocolate seems to be everyone’s favorite guilty pleasure, and one of the most frequently craved foods. It’s often regarded as a luxury, an indulgence, or a special treat or reward when you’ve been extra good. Everyone knows that it’s also the perfect gift for Valentine’s Day. Best of all, chocolate is actually good for you—in moderation, of course. Chocolate, especially dark chocolate, contains many of the same antioxidants typically found in fruit and vegetables, because it’s also made from plants. Even more surprising is that dark chocolate contains a much greater burst of antioxidants than many fruits, even brightly colored ones such as strawberries. In fact, due to the high flavonoid content, dark chocolate has

52 | LEXINGTON LIFE | February 2013

by Kristen Carter actually been recommended by experts as a superfood. Chocolate is particularly full of vitamins B1, B2, D and of course, vitamin E, which is essential for healthy skin and cells. It even seems to have anti-wrinkle effects: a German research study found that one cup of hot chocolate a day was associated with roughly a 25 percent reduction in wrinkles. Furthermore, the flavonoids present in chocolate help to protect our skin from the sun. One of the most striking health benefits of chocolate is its ability to promote feelings of happiness. Dark chocolate contains an amino acid called tryptophan, which the body uses to promote the release of serotonin in the brain. Serotonin is one of the primary feel-good chemicals, and is strongly associated with happiness. Indeed,

?

anti-depressant drugs work by targeting serotonin receptors to promote the release of this feel-good chemical to improve mood. Local chocolatiers Rick and Helen Kunta have been making Lexington customers happy for almost 37 years. “Work is different every day, with different flavors, shapes, people and requests,” said Rick. “Chocolate Wonderland started off as my wife’s hobby, then I got interested too, and it’s blossomed from there.” It makes sense that chocolate has moodboosting effects; people have always turned to chocolate as a pick me up after a bad day. For the full effect minus the calories, go for a few squares of dark chocolate instead of a bar of regular milk chocolate. Dark chocolate has been found to successfully satisfy chocolate cravings with fewer bites, and some experts believe that eating a little bit

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of dark chocolate everyday reduces the risk of falling prey to a full-on binge. This is because dark chocolate contains at least 70 percent cocoa solids, compared to around 30 percent for milk chocolate. Chocolate also contains energy-boosting properties that can pull you out of a slump in the middle of the day. Its high sugar content has a little bit to do with this, but chocolate also contains chemicals which stimulate the central nervous system, plus a small amount of caffeine for a more prolonged energy boost. Again, a few squares of dark chocolate will do the trick and contains less fat than a whole bar of milk chocolate. “Milk chocolate is actually most popular with our customers,” says Mary Brandan, who owns Chocolate Monkey in Lexington along with her husband, John. “Personally I enjoy dark. John probably likes milk chocolate better, but he’s not a big chocolate eater. What I love most is watching customers walk in for the first time. The scents and sights put a big smile on their face, and their eyes light up as if they just walked into heaven.” Chocolate also has positive effects on the vascular system, thanks to a high content of flavonoids. Research shows that a small amount of dark chocolate every day can lower blood pressure, increase blood pressure function and reduce the risk of a disease called atherosclerosis, in which arteries become thick. Healthy blood vessels are important in terms of promoting a smooth flow of blood through the body and brain. We can safely conclude that eating chocolate in moderation lowers the risk of stroke, heart disease and other vascular problems, promotes healthy skin and cell function with anti-aging effects, and boosts our mood and energy levels. What more could we ask for from our favorite guilty pleasure? n

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TO THE READERS OF

Lexington Life Magazine

You

Thank

FOR VOTING US “BEST.”

BEST HOSPITAL Lexington Medical Center

BEST EMERGENCY ROOM Lexington Medical Center

BEST CARDIOLOGIST Amy Rawl Epps, MD, FACC Lexington Cardiology

BEST ONCOLOGIST Steven A. Madden, MD Lexington Oncology

www.lexmed.com 54 | LEXINGTON LIFE | February 2013

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February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 55

Nutella French Toast with Strawberries 1 cup sliced strawberries 2 teaspoons sugar Juice of half a lemon 4 slices of bread About 1/2 cup Nutella 1 large egg 3/4 cup milk 2 tablespoons melted butter 1 teaspoon vanilla 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon salt butter (for the pan) Powdered sugar for serving Combine the strawberries, sugar and lemon juice in a bowl. Toss to coat and set aside. Spread desired amount of Nutella over 2 slices of bread. Top with the remaining bread, making two sandwiches. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. In a shallow dish or pie plate, whisk together the egg and milk. Whisk in the melted butter, vanilla, cinnamon and salt. Add 1 tablespoon of butter to

the heated skillet and swirl to coat. Dip each sandwich into the egg mixture, soaking for 30 to 40 seconds per side. Add the slices to the pan in a single layer, taking care not to crowd the skillet. Cook for 1-2 minutes, until light golden brown. Flip and continue cooking an additional 1-2 minutes. Add more butter as needed. Transfer to a plate, dust with powdered sugar, then top with strawberries. Serve immediately.

Chocolate-Stuffed Raspberries One package fresh raspberries 1 bag white or dark chocolate chips (or some of both) Insert one chocolate chip, point side down, into the top of each raspberry. Serve chilled or at room temperature in a stylish serving bowl.

Valentine Blondies 1 cup all-purpose flour 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/8 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon salt

56 | LEXINGTON LIFE | February 2013

1/3 cup butter 1 cup packed brown sugar 1 egg 1 tablespoon vanilla extract 1 to 1-1/3 cup Valentine M&M’s Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and set aside. Melt 1/3 cup butter. Add 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar and mix well. Cool slightly. Add egg (beaten) and vanilla and blend well. Add flour mixture, a little at a time, mixing well. Mix in 2/3 cup M&M’s. Spread in 9 x 9 x 2 inch pan. Sprinkle 1/3 to 2/3 cup M&M’s on top. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Store in airtight container at room temperature.

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February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 57

Barricades M

y dictionary contains two separate listings for the Latin root of communion. The first root means sharing something in common. It makes me think about a row of people kneeling at an altar, or two people gazing at stars. This definition reminds me of the phrase “communing with nature.” Communing with nature is close to perfect — simply existing quietly while sharing the world’s beauty in common with my heart and soul. Communion’s second listing says communion fortifies, strengthens, and barricades. This definition gives depth to the idea of sharing. Now the sharing takes on a purpose and power. The glass of wine shared with others kneeling at an altar fortifies anyone drinking it with an open heart. The two people gazing into the night sky are strengthened by the silent stars they see and the time they spend seeing them. My moments of dirt road contemplation certainly strengthen and fortify my heart and soul. But I keep thinking about this idea that communion is a barricade.It’s simple enough: anything which strengthens and fortifies serves as a barricade. But aren’t we living in a safe, secure world? What in the name of McGillicuddy do we need barricading against? A few nights ago, I spent the evening in a large city, singing and telling stories to a group of folks gathered in a small room. As usual, I asked the crowd to introduce themselves to four people they didn’t know. It’s a simple drill: offer the stranger your hand, along with your first name, your last name, and the city of your birth. I tell the people: “These are your neighbors. These are the folks you will join with 58 | LEXINGTON LIFE | February 2013

to defend your freedom if the need arises. This is your community.” At the evening’s end, we gathered in a circle, joined hands, and sang three choruses of the old song “Will the Circle Be Unbroken.” By the third chorus, people always start to loosen up and sing differently than they do on the first chorus. Then, the song is over. They all shake hands again with their new-found friends. I leave the room to the sound of joyous conversation and laughter. People are happy when they feel free to be themselves. Over and over I have witnessed that this is a sort of communion people are hungry for. It can easily be repeated by anyone, anywhere. The handshakes, shy statements of birthplaces, and the joining of voices in song is a sharing in common of the first order. The other night, at least half of those in attendance thanked me afterwards for encouraging them to introduce themselves to one another. Several folks said they didn’t really know anyone in the big town, and now they had new friends. We are starving, as a people, for the simple act of introducing ourselves to strangers. There’s an ice to life that just melts away during this communion. Melting ice is as good a barricade against that ice as one could hope for. n

David Clark is a nationally known writer, musician, carpenter and organic vegetable farmer in Cochran, GA. For permission to reuse, please contact the author at dclark@outofthesky.com.

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February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 59

by Ann Marie Hubbard

St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church 606 West Main Street www.saintpaulmbsc.org (803) 359-6804 Sundays Sunday School 9:00 a.m., Worship Service 10:00 a.m. Wednesdays Prayer Service & Bible Study 7:00 p.m.

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St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church in Lexington is furthering God’s Kingdom though their outreach ministries. The congregation has been serving others since 1990 at its West Main Street location. While the actual founding date of the church is uncertain, records show that in 1902, under the leadership of Reverend E.W. Bowen, a wood church was enlarged to seat 50 people. Fastforward 111 years: with approximately 230 members, St. Paul Baptist is not an average small-town church. In spite of its size, St. Paul’s has many ministries and community programs that go beyond typical outreach. One such ministry that stands out is their women’s ministry. Betty Carter has led the women’s ministry for over 13 years, and was recently elected as “Mother of the Church.” “The women’s group is an outreach that all women are invited to, regardless of denomination,” said Carter. A primary focus is for women to

be one in Christ, and to understand the importance of women’s roles throughout the Bible and in the world today. St. Paul’s soup kitchen is another unique outreach. Church members prepare about 35-40 meals every Saturday morning. Lizzie Walker and Michele Corbitt explained that the soup kitchen at St. Paul’s is a place where individuals in need can go for a meal. When individuals in need are unable to make it to the church, food is delivered to their homes. The worship service at St. Paul Baptist is as extraordinary as their missions and community outreach, with a vibrant music ministry. The Mass Choir performs on the first and second Sunday of each month; the Male Choir on third and fourth Sundays; acapella music from the Jubilee Choir every Sunday; and during those months with a rare fifth Sunday, the Youth Choir performs. Rev. Dr. Walter Butler began his pastoral duties at St. Paul Baptist in 1997. A native of Saluda, SC, he received his B.S. from Clafin College in 1973. In 1985, Dr. Butler received his B.D. degree from Morris College in Sumter. He later earned a Masters of Divinity from Morehouse Interdenominational Theological Seminary, and his Doctorate from Hood Theological Seminary in North Carolina. Dr. Butler has also taught at Morris College School of Religion as an extension teacher in Neeses, SC, and the St. George site. The congregation welcomes guests on Sundays or Wednesdays for worship and Bible study, and look forward to meeting you. n www.lexingtonlifemagazine.com

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February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 61

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February 2013 | LEXINGTON LIFE | 63

Calling All Businesses!

1 3 out of every

deaths

in South Carolina is related to cardiovascular disease.

That’s why Lexington Medical Center is partnering with the American Heart Association for a new heart disease prevention campaign in February. We’re asking Midlands businesses to join us by going red with information about heart disease and promoting heart health for every body.

For information on how your business can partner with Lexington Medical Center to promote heart health,

visit www.MidlandsGoesRed.com.


Lexington Life Magazine February 2013