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280 Living

September 2017 | Volume 11 | Issue 1

neighborly news & entertainment

Ri d e r s h i p u p o n BJ CTA’ s 2 0 1 r o u t e By ERICA TECHO

A Birmingham-Jefferson County Transit Authority bus picks up riders near Grandview Medical Center on U.S. 280. Photo by Sarah Finnegan.


D espite lower gas prices and a national trend of people returning to their individual vehicles, some Birmingham bus routes are seeing an increase in ridership. The 201 commuter route along U .S. , which travels between downtown Birmingham and the almart near Alabama 119 Monday through Saturday,

has seen ridership increase from 132 monthly riders in October to averaging 2,000 e ach month in 2017. The commuter route has seen significant increases in rider numbers since Grandview edical Center opened, said Birmingham- efferson County Transit Authority ecutive irector Barbara urdoc . e have a lot of pic ups at that Grandview point, she said. rom the

day it the route opened bac in 4, we started that route, it has been successful since pic ing up at Grandview. Grandview opened its doors in October , and between October and ovember of that year, ridership nearly doubled from 58 9 to 1,100 monthly passengers. That number has continued to climb since.

See BJCTA | page A30

BUILDING ROBOTS, BUILDING CONFIDENCE Robotics program growing ‘exponentially’ as students find stepping stone in STEM



ixty-four students. Sixteen teams. Two world champions. Those are the numbers that defined Oa ountain iddle School’s robotics program in the 2016- 17 school year. O S teacher Sherri hitehead, who sponsors the school’s robotics robotics team, has seen those numbers increase steadily since ta ing over in 4. Bac then, there were only a handful of students participating — between six and 10 — and those numbers doubled in 2015. I n 2015, m ore students competed in statewide competition, and two teams went on to compete at worlds. In - 7, five teams made it to worlds, with one team ma ing it all the way to finals.

See ROBOTICS | page A31 o ntain

Pre-Sort Standard U .S. Postage PAI D Tupelo, MS Permit # 54


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mem er Piper

atson tests her team s ro ot on a o rse to see if it o ld lift m ltiple rings onto poles of varying heights Photo by Sarah Finnegan.


Sponsors .............. A4 280 News ............. A6

Business ..............A10 School House .....A19

Private School Guide ................... A24

Sports ................... B4 Events .................. B13

Calendar .............. B21 Medical Guide........C1

Never Forget

Time to Soar

Social studies educator Richard Stamper teaches 9/11 to Spain Park students too young to remember.

Eagles volleyball team makes it no se ret hey re setting up for state championship.

See page A20

See page B10

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280 Living

About Us Editor’s Note By Erica Techo I t’s September, which means it’s my favorite time of the year: college football season. G rowing up, my dad taught me the importance of watching — and understanding — football from an early age. rom first through eighth grade, he would sit down with my cheerleading squad and walk us through the basics. I t started simply: The team with the ball is on offense, and the team without the ball is on defense. I t slowly progressed to an explanation of downs and why our team got two points for a field goal, but college teams only got one. O n Saturday mornings, we’d cheer on our rec football team, and on Saturday nights we would don the Red & Black to cheer on our U G A Bulldogs. O nce I hit high school, I added cheering on the sidelines every F riday night to my weekend routine. The football tradition carried through my family for our whole lives — my brother led our high school spirit section, and we’d go to U G A games when we could. I f not, we’d all be in front of the big-screen TV in time to watch the D awgs kick-off. Since moving to Birmingham, I cannot go to U G A

games or family cook-outs every weekend, but football continues to hold a special place in my heart. I ’ll watch every televised game, and find radio coverage of the others, and I ’ve even added Alabama and Auburn games to my calendar — for water cooler talk on Monday, of course. And this football season, I ’m looking forward to another outstanding season of coverage from our sports desk. Y ou’ll start to see our high school football magaz ine — 8 pages of features, rosters and other must-know information — around town and at each team’s home game. Also, make sure to pick up our G ameday handouts at Chelsea home games, which will have the lowdown on that night’s game. F or everything else, make sure to like 280 Living on F acebook, follow @ 280l iving on Twitter and subscribe to our e-newsletter.

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Contact Information: 280 Living PO Box 530341 Birmingham, AL 35253 (205) 313-1780

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280 News

Redesign for Shelby 39/47 intersection presented Residents look at a map detailing potential changes to the intersection at Shelby 39 and Shelby 47. Photo by Erica Techo.

By ERICA TECHO Plans are in the works to redesign an intersection that Shelby County Engineer Randy Cole said is one of the most dangerous in the county. The intersection of Shelby 39 and 47 in Chelsea, which runs in front of City Hall and only a few feet from the railroad crossing, poses dangers due to the fact that a traffic light at the intersection causes cars to queue up on the railroad tracks, as well as other factors limit sight distance around the intersection. A plan to redesign the intersection was presented during a public involvement meeting following the Aug. 15 Chelsea City Council meeting. The county worked with Chelsea Mayor Tony Picklesimer and the Chelsea City Council to secure an APPLE grant, which allows for a study of the intersection, to help determine next steps for a project. Sain Associates was brought in on the project and helped present maps of the conceptual drawing — “That is to say, this is pretty much what it looks like, but we have not done any detailed design,” Cole said — to residents at the meeting. The conceptual drawing included multiple changes to the intersection, including: ► Improving the railroad crossing by installing gates and an additional railroad warning light. ► Grading the road to remove a bump at the railroad crossing that currently affects sight distance. ► Clearing vegetation to improve sight distance when approaching the railroad. ► Placing a cul-de-sac on Shelby 47 where the current intersection is. ► Shifting Shelby 39 and moving the intersection of Shelby 47 to about 700 feet from the

current traffic signal. Initial studies show a traffic light would be warranted at the new intersection, said Sain Associate’s Alicia Bailey, but more studies would need to be done to confirm that. ► Building a new Shelby 47, to connect to Shelby 39 and the current Shelby 47. ► Adding turn lanes to Shelby 39 when approaching the new intersection with Shelby 47, and having turn lanes on the new Shelby 47. Several residents attended the public involvement meeting, approaching one of

many large drawings and asking questions of representatives. Some residents had concerns about the traffic that would still be present, even after moving the traffic light farther down Shelby 39. Others mentioned that businesses at the intersection of Shelby 39 and 47 would lose road frontage, or that residents would have to drive further to get to destinations that used to be right down the road, due to the change in the intersection. The presentation of the plans are the first step, Cole said, and the next step will be to take

into consideration any comments received at the meeting. After that, they will move to the design phase, and then would undergo right of way acquisition, utility relocation, “and only then could actual road construction commence.” “Projects of this nature just take a while to unfold,” Cole said. While there is no set timeline for the project, Cole said the goal is to complete the redesign of this intersection and make it safer. “We’re unveiling this concept because we would like to carry this to fruition,” Cole said.

September 2017 • A7

Top: A conditional use was approved for the property outlined in red that will be an approximately 80-by-80 foot fenced-in area, to house a 160-foot cell tower. Above: The Planning Commission also approved a final plat for two lots on property that was initially set to hold 22 lots within Highland Lakes. Maps courtesy of Shelby County Planning Commission.

Shelby Planning Commission approves 160-foot cell tower near Doug Baker Boulevard By ERICA TECHO At its first August meeting, the Shelby County Planning Commission approved a conditional use re uest to permit a new cellular tower for the area between Cahaba alley oad and oug Ba er Boulevard. The -foot structure, which will include a -foot cell tower with a -foot lighting pole on top, is set to be built on a property off of ann rive, which is appro imately a uarter mile from oug Ba er Boulevard and three uarters of a mile from .S. . The tower would be built on a . 4-acre s uare lot, but would occupy only a small portion of that lot. hen presenting to the planning commission, Planner Christie Pannell- ester said an -foot barrier around the tower would have to be opa ue and compatible with surrounding developments, buildings, etc. According to Pannell- ester and Andrew otenstreich, who was representing co-Site C the company that will construct the tower the tower will have e uipment for T- obile to increase its service area. There will also be room for up to three more tenants or other wireless providers on the tower. All e uipment from any tenants would be enclosed in the fenced area, otenstreich said. The area around the new tower is overloaded with users, otenstreich told the planning commission, and T- obile has trouble with coverage in the area. They need to get better coverage for their customers, but also there s a site nearby that the coverage is being used so e tensively that it s ma ing it so that e isting site is not fully operational, and therefore they need this additional site to of oad capacity from the use of the nearby tower, otenstreich said. e provided maps and graphics showing the current coverage and capacity to e plain how they settled on the proposed site. hile there are multiple towers in a -mile radius

with T- obile on them, otenstreich said topographical elements such as ridges impact the strength of signal. e also said that the area where a boost was needed from an e tra tower is surrounded by residential areas, which made it difficult to find a lot where they could build the tower. This was basically the only site in the area that would wor , he said. otenstreich also presented a study and article that stated there is not proof that cell towers adversely affect property values. ultiple nearby residents spo e up about the cell tower, stating concerns ranging from how the tower might affect satellite television in the area to what safety measures would be in place around the tower. otenstreich said the tower would not affect satellite signals and there would be barbed wire atop the -foot fence, in addition to no trespassing signs around the fence and measures on the tower to prevent climbing. In regard to other concerns, he said no trees outside of the appro imate -by- -foot space within the fence would be cleared. e also recommended against a tree design that is sometimes used for towers, after residents as ed if it was an option to help the tower blend in. Those can be used in situations where the tower does not need to be as tall, he said, but would stic out even more in this situation. The four planning commissioners present at the meeting voted in favor of the conditional use re uest. Commissioners Amy Smith, Bill innebrew and en ilder were absent. The planning commission also approved a case regarding two lots in the 3 nd sector, Phase II of ighland a es. This re uest, for approval of a final plat to subdivide .7 acres into two residential lots, was unanimously approved by present commissioners, although some residents voiced concerned about sediment, blasting during construction and an impact on property values.

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Commission OKs service agreements with cable, internet providers By ERICA TECHO At its first August meeting, the Shelby County Commission, multiple cable and internet service agreements were on the agenda. The commission considered and approved a resolution to e tend the franchise agreement with AT T. The agreement was set to e pire on ec. 3 , , and now will be e tended to the same date in 3. The commission also approved resolutions to ma e an addendum to the cable franchise agreement with Charter Communications and to e tend a franchise agreement with Bright ouse etwor s Charter, until ec., 3 3. uring the public comment section of the agenda, the commission heard about another media company in Shelby County. ighway 3 resident Sarah iegler spo e to the commission about issues she has encountered with ito edia, the only television option in her area. Since problems starting in August 4, iegler said she would continually lose channels, sometimes more than , but nothing would be done to fi the issue. The problem I have with them is this is an ongoing issue, iegler said. othing s changed. As a matter of fact, it s progressively got worse. ue to the fact that the area around her home is heavily wooded, iegler said she cannot get irect T or other options. She has heard various reasons for her cable issues, including cables pulling apart in a field, a wasp s nest, a bro en down buc et truc , as well as others. y concern is instead of me going forward and being progressive, I m going bac wards, iegler said. She also said ito edia is ta ing advantage of anyone using their service by misrepresenting themselves. ou now our history with ito. hat she s communicating is no different than some of our other problems that we ve had, said County anager Ale udchoc . anager of Community Services eggie

Resident Sarah Ziegler addresses the council about problems she has had with Zito Media. Photo by Erica Techo.

olloway said he has been in contact with iegler, and is aware of the issues she is facing. ito has been notified of all the problems. They re ust slow to respond and oftentimes won t respond at all, so that s an ongoing issue the county has. e re at a stage now that we re going to have to ma e a decision to continue to wor with them or do something else, olloway said. udchoc also said that ito was the only cable provider willing to try and provide for

that area. Also at the meeting ► The commission awarded bids for custom reactivation of GAC media. ► udchoc gave an update on several ongoing pro ects. e said the county hopes to put a pro ect at the courthouse out to bid by ec. , and provided pro ected completion dates for Oa ountain State Par pro ects, including a road and bi e lane from the north trailhead par ing lot to the bac gate

arch , Alabama ildlife Center s new mews Sept. 7, 7 and IT systems education infrastructure Sept. , 7 the north trail connector from un er a e to the north trailhead par ing lot Aug. 3 , 7 , Beeswa Cree Par Spring and improvements to the elena public firing range ov. 3, 7. ► The meeting concluded, and a wor session to discuss revenue pro ections and the upcoming budget followed.

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September 2017 • A11

Now Open Ch r o n i c Ta c o s is now open in the Patchwork F arms development, 306 6 Healthy Way, Suite 100, next to Publix. The restaurant is open 10:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., seven days a week. 9 6 7 - 4 9 0 0 , c h r o n ic t a c o s .c o m /v e s t a v ia - h ills


anniversary in August. 2 6 2 - 2 9 9 6 , c a l yp s o s t b a r t h . c o m Ag i l e P h ys i c a l Th e r a p y, 312 5 Blue Lake D rive, celebrated its ninth anniversary in August. 9 6 9 - 7 8 8 7 , m ya g i l e p t . c o m

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a r c - 1 Ca r W a s h has opened its 2 Mseventh location in the Birmingham area at 42 Chelsea Pointe D rive, Chelsea. The car wash offers a “speed pass club” for people to join. m a r c 1 c a r w a s h .c o m

New Ownership J o h n n y Ra y’ s BBQ , 1056 9 O ld Highway 2 8 0, Suite 3, Chelsea, is under new ownership. A ribbon-cutting was held Aug. 2 4 to celebrate. 6 7 8 - 8 4 1 8 , j o h n n yr a ys b b q . c o m


Ch i c k e n S a l a d Ch i c k , 2 10 D oug Baker Road, Suite 2 00, is celebrating its third anniversary in September. 9 9 5 - 2 5 2 5 , c h ic k e n s a la d c h ic k .c o m / b ir m in g h a m _ le e _ b r a n c h


S m i t h Ch i r o p r a c t i c , 1558 2 U .S. 2 8 0, Suite 114, Chelsea, is celebrating its 10th anniversary in September. 6 7 8 - 6 8 8 4 , c h e ls e a b a c k s m it h .c o m


S a l o n 4 3 On e , 52 91 V alleydale Road, Suite 12 5, is celebrating its second anniversary in September. 9 6 8 - 1 6 2 0 , s a lo n 4 3 o n e .c o m


Coming Soon

Anniversaries 4

Hi l l t o p M o n t e s s o r i, 6 Abbott Square, Mt Laurel, is celebrating its 2 1st anniversary in September. 4 3 7 - 9 3 4 3 , h illt o p m o n t e s s o r i.c o m


Ca l yp s o S t . Ba r t h , 2 2 5 Summit Blvd., Suite 100, celebrated its third

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A12 • September 2017

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Preview of



Speaker David Bobo gives overview of Jefferson State college’s offerings

September The South Shelby Chamber of Commerce is hosting its the Mayors of Shelby County membership luncheon Sept. 7. This luncheon will feature the mayors of Shelby County who will participate in a panel and give updates on their cities. The luncheon will start at 11:30 a.m. with networking, and lunch will be catered by Bertolone Italian Café. The cost is $15 per person, and no RSVP is required. The chamber takes cash, check or credit card. For more information, go to southshelbychamber/ events.

By ERICA TECHO J efferson State Community College’s motto is “F ind your place,” a phrase that D irector of Media Relations D avid Bobo said represents how any student can find a good fit at eff State. “Basically what we’re saying is, wherever you are in your educational journey — high school senior, unemployed, underemployed, un ed out of somewhere and you want another chance — wherever you are on that ourney, you can find your place at eff State, Bobo said. ou can fit in. Bobo, the guest spea er at the South Shelby Chamber of Commerce s Aug. 3 luncheon, tal ed to chamber members about the different education options offered at efferson State, and the different educational paths that can be ta en. e started with basic facts about the school, including its enrollment of nearly 9, degree-see ing students, an enrollment number that places J eff State between the niversity of Alabama at Birmingham and Samford U niversity in regard to enrollment numbers. A lot of fol s are surprised to reali e there are that many [ students] at J eff State,” Bobo said, adding that those numbers don’t include fast-trac students in non-credit or wor force programs. A majority of J eff State students transfer to a four-year university or ta e classes at both J eff State and a larger university, Bobo said, and the school also has several first-time students. These are students who are typically the first members of their family to attend college, and they are wor ing to learn the ins and outs of credit hours, G PAs and other

Jefferson State Director of Media Relations David Bobo speaks during the Aug. 3 South Shelby Chamber of Commerce luncheon. Photo by Erica Techo.

things about a post-high school education. or .74 percent of first-generation students, they graduate or transfer to a larger university, Bobo said. That tells me a couple of things, Bobo said. They re ta ing the right classes, they re getting what they need, they re moving on. They re not staying there on daddy s bill ust going and going and going. A benefit of attending eff State, even for students hoping to transfer to a larger university, is the fact that it saves money, Bobo said. e presented a chart showing the difference in cost for 12 semester hours at U niversity of Alabama, Auburn U niversity and J efferson State for one and two years of school, with

J efferson State coming in at about a third of the cost. Students who are unsure about their desired career and education path can find their way through the program at J eff State, Bobo said, rather than spend time as an undecided ma or, or in the wrong ma or, at a fouryear school. If you don t now what you re doing, you’re going to turn around and you’re going to have some student debt,” Bobo said, giving the example of students in a nursing program who, a year or two in, reali e they don t li e the sight of blood. ell, if you go down that path and you change your major you can rac up some debt uic ly. So ust be smart. Bobo also discussed options for students loo ing for additional education, including the 10 percent of J eff State students with bachelor s degrees who come bac for a career program. The school s health field career programs often have a high li elihood of job placement, Bobo said, and can provide students with an immediate ob and life e perience if they are still see ing an ideal career. e evaluate these career programs . If we have graduates who are not getting jobs, guess what Those don t hang around much longer at eff State. They have to be a viable program, Bobo said. eff State also has apprenticeship programs with manufacturers such as onda, as well as dual-enrollment programs for high school students loo ing to get a few college credits completed. e ve got it all, Bobo said. A re ection of the community — that’s who’s in our classes.

September 2017 • A13

Superintendents review successes, chamber partnership in State of the Schools address Hoover City Schools Assistant Superintendent Ron Dodson speaks during the ham er s luncheon on July 26. Photo by Layton Dudley.

By ERICA TECHO A strong and successful student body needs not only a strong school system, but also support from community and local businesses. This is one of the points made by superintendents from school districts throughout Shelby County during the J uly 2 6 G reater Shelby Chamber of Commerce luncheon. D uring the luncheon, the chamber hosted a panel that included Alabaster City Schools Superintendent Wayne V ickers, Hoover City Schools Assistant Superintendent Ron D odson, Pelham City Schools Superintendent Scott Coefield and Shelby County Schools Superintendent Randy F uller. The administrators addressed questions on topics ranging from teaching soft skills and career readiness skills to partnering with local businesses to general updates on their respective school systems. All superintendents lauded the relationship their school systems have with the community, including the chamber itself and the business in their communities. When D odson was asked how HCS makes sure teachers are up to date on the needs of local businesses, D odson gave a simple answer: “We talk to them,” he said. Businesses are invited to talk with career programs, which are reauthoriz ed every three years. Part of that reauthoriz ation process, he said, is making sure the career programs are up to date with industry standards. “They look at our curriculum, they look at our classroom resources, they tell us if things are up to date, if they need to be replaced,” D odson said, noting that some career programs that weren’t meeting “workforce needs” were closed down, and those resources will be reinvested in other programs. V ickers noted how the chamber helps students through job fairs, keeping schools

informed on what employers want and providing placement in co-op programs — where students attend school part of the day and then receive credit for work-based learning or internships. Business leaders can also participate in advisory boards, where they give feedback to the schools. “I think I ’ll just say amen,” D odson said after V ickers’ remarks. “Seriously, advisory boards, that’s a very, very good thing. When our teachers reach out to you, asking you to participate in those, please give those a try. G ive that a chance because we really do need those voices of industry with our partners.” Coefield added that he has wor ed in three school systems and with three different chambers, and “this chamber does it better than any place I ’ve ever seen it.” Chamber programs — including K eeping it Real, a program for ninth-graders that focuses on real-world scenarios; and Communication Matters, a program for 11th graders that focuses on soft skills — help students learn the life skills they need after high school graduation, whether they go on to college or a career. Coefield said PCS aims to ma e students

ready for life after high school, responsible to enter a job and able to cooperate with others. And if chamber members hope to help meet those goals, they can help schools in ways other than through finances. “Try to look for every opportunity to network and partner with us at the schools,” Coefield said. Our ids need to be exposed to guest speakers, we’re constantly looking for partnerships.” Bringing together businesses, the chamber and schools also lead to success for Shelby County, F uller said. He noted that the nine cities in Shelby County were recogniz ed among the “best places to live” in Alabama and that Shelby County has the lowest unemployment rate of all Alabama counties. “What we’re doing as a school system, as a community, is we’re increasing the social capital, and that’s where you guys can help, is increasing the social capital,” F uller said. “Showing our students the opportunities out there for them, that they can leave their schools, leave their communities and be successful. That’s something that’s very important for us.”

Preview of

September Luncheon

The Greater Shelby Chamber of Commerce will host its annual Safety Awards at its September community luncheon, during which public safety officials from throughout Shelby County will be honored. The program is a way to personally give thanks to the fire, police and sheriff personnel, and to honor them for their service and sacrifices that are made each day in keeping Shelby County Communities safe, said Lisa Shapiro with the Greater Shelby Chamber of Commerce. The luncheon will be Wednesday, Sept. 27, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Pelham Civic Complex and Ice Arena. The cost is $20 for chamber investors, $30 for “future” investors. Registration is available online at or by calling the chamber office at 663-4542. Reservations are requested by noon Sept. 25.

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Sharing the Magic City’s story, 1 kid at a time Author, illustrator hope to spread excitement through children’s book By ERICA TECHO While “D own in the Ham” — a new children’s book that provides a walking tour and history of Birmingham — is based in the Magic City, its origins are not. The author, Ashley Chesnutt, is a G eorgia native who moved to Birmingham in 2008 and was first inspired to write during a trip to G reenville, South Carolina. She walked the city with her friends and their kids, who kept talking about “seeing the mice downtown,” Chesnutt said. I n G reenville, there are nine mice statues throughout the downtown area, and someone had written a book about the mice. “That book got them [ the kids] so excited about their downtown, and as I was driving back to Birmingham from G reenville, I thought, ‘ I really wish we could capture that kind of excitement for Birmingham’s downtown,’” Chesnutt said. In the summer of , Chesnutt said, she felt compelled to start serving in other places in Birmingham. She was working at Church at

Abby Little, left, and Ashley Chesnutt, illustrator and author, respectively, of “Down in the Ham,” at their booth at the Ross Bridge Farmers Market on July 7. Photos by Erica Techo.

Brook Hills as associate singles minister, but wanted to serve more outside of her church. I reali ed I was definitely doing good things,” she said, “but I was kind of living in a bubble.” She started volunteering at pregnancy center Sav-A-Life V estavia, but still wanted to do more in the city. While downtown Birmingham’s recent renovations have brought a greater draw for young professionals, Chesnutt said she hadn’t seen as many families or older individuals in Birmingham proper. She wanted

everyone to be excited about downtown. “There’s a lot of great things that have happened in Birmingham,” Chesnutt said. Even though the idea of a children’s book was circulating in her head, Chesnutt said she knew there was no point in starting one unless she had great illustrations. That’s when she found Abby Little, a Minor resident and founder of e ect isual Arts. Sav-A-Life was having a fundraiser, and Chesnutt spotted a painting during the silent auction. The piece, called “Lovingham,” was

a colorful rendition of Birmingham. “As soon as I saw it, I was like, ‘ That’s it. That’s the illustrator. That’s the artist,’” Chesnutt said. “So I bid on the painting, and I lost.” Even though she lost out on the painting, Chesnutt reached out to Little about the potential children’s book. Since seeing Little’s painting at the silent auction, inspiration had struck and Chesnutt wrote the entire manuscript in a few months. Then, she messaged Little and they met up to talk about the project.

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... I just felt this was such a unique marriage of my work and my passion. I thought, ‘Wow. Kids are going to want to read this, and they’re going to learn something about their city.’


own in the

am is a hildren s oo written from the perspe tive of

“We both kind of left knowing that this was going to happen,” Chesnutt said. “When she brought up the project to me, the way she pitched it was just so intriguing because I grew up a Birmingham child. I ’ve always lived here,” Little said, adding that while she got to experience the downtown area growing up, she had several friends from school who saw the area as dangerous or not the best place for kids. “D own in the Ham,” she said, is something that could help introduce more kids to the city. “I have always loved being with kids and

l an who also a ts as a to r g ide aro nd the ity

sharing with them, so I just felt this was such a unique marriage of my work and my passion,” Little said. “I thought, ‘ Wow. K ids are going to want to read this, and they’re going to learn something about their city.’” The book includes two parts: a history of Birmingham and a scavenger hunt along Richard Arrington J r. Boulevard. As she was writing, Chesnutt said she focused on that street as it provides a lot of history on Birmingham, starting with the history of the city s first blac mayor. D uring the time that they worked on the

project, both women kept in mind Birmingham’s history and making sure it’s accurate. “We want to portray Birmingham, the history of it, accurately,” Chesnutt said. “I n a kid-friendly way, but we don’t want to hide the history.” This history includes the racial divides, the 16 th Street Baptist Church bombing, the Civil Rights Movement and economic challenges in Birmingham. Little’s initial “Lovingham” painting was in color, which she said helped show the brightness of the city and represent the newness of Birmingham

art. But along those same lines, she re ected on how “color” had always been divisive in the city’s history. Throughout the book, readers move from more muted colors at the start, in the “darker” parts of the city’s history, Chesnutt said. “As you move into the present day in the tour, the color scheme moves brighter in the book,” she said. “Things are changing, and things are brighter, and we wanted to represent that brighter present and brighter future that we see.” The book launched in J une and so far has received positive feedback, Chesnutt and Little said. They hope as more people hear about it and read it, more families will make their way into downtown. “F or me, having children and our families in our city is our next generations and our next step forward,” Little said. “All of these revitaliz ation efforts can end so quickly, in one generation.” I n addition to bringing people into Birmingham, the book will give back to the city. Some of the book’s proceeds will be donated to The Lovelady Center, a faith-based organiz ation that provides job training, coaching and mentorship to individuals coming out of prison. “With the book, we wanted to be able to write a book about the city, but we also wanted the book to contribute to the people of the city,” Chesnutt said. F or more information, go to downintheham. com.

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Jack and Alex Davis of Two Brothers and a Dog stand at their table at the Chelsea Farmers Market with their dog, Dixie, in May. The boys have a weekly stand at the market and also sell their products in the Chelsea General Store. Photo by Erica Techo.

SUCCESS With help from their dog, Chelsea brothers spend summer establishing candle-making business

By ERICA TECHO Summertime can be about relaxing at the lake, going to the beach or playing video games at home. But for brothers J ack and Alex D avis, this summer was about starting a business. The Chelsea residents, used their summer to start their candle-making business, Two Brothers and a D og. “I t just kind of started as a hobby,” J ack said. “We had these wax melt things we got from the store, and we used the leftover wax that didn’t have any scent in it, and we just made a little tea light.” After that first pro ect, they were hoo ed. J ack got materials to make more candles and wax melts for his birthday, and the brothers started to experiment with different scents. They use essential oils to create their scents, Ale said, and they have figured out what combinations are popular and which ones aren’t. “We really just messed around a bunch, and ust figured out what wor ed and what didn t work,” Alex said. As they produced more candles, J ack and Ale created yers that they shared with neighbors. At first, it was ust friends and neighbors who bought their candles, but then the yer made its way to the Chelsea eighborhood Watch F acebook page. ow, they have a wee ly stand at the Chelsea F armers Market and will have some wax

melts in the Chelsea G eneral Store. Throughout the process, the boys have learned a lot about business and marketing, said their mom, Paula D avis. “F or me, it’s been fun because I ’m as handsoff as possible, because it’s their business and not mine,” she said. “There are certain things they’re learning ... I ’ve seen them learn about marketing, about product placement on the table, about scents that sell or don’t.” Two Brothers and a D og was also a great way for both of them to spend their summer, Paula D avis said, because it was like “taking a marketing class without taking a marketing class.” “I ’m real proud of them because they’ve put a lot of hard work and effort into this, and they’ve done something constructive with their summer,” Paula D avis said. Each brother has also found his role in the business, she said. “Alex is more the marketing person, and J ack is the production manager,” Paula D avis said, adding that as a parent, she sees both boys work equally in the company. And J ack and Alex would agree that their roles complement each other. “My favorite thing about it is probably making the candles,” J ack said. “I t’s really fun to make scents.” “My favorite part is mainly just meeting all sorts of different people,” Alex said. At their farmers market booth, shoppers will

also find the third party in their company s name — the family dog, D ixie. A picture of D ixie is on the labels of the Two Brothers and a D og candles and wax melts, but sometimes she will come out to markets as well. “We sell a lot better, too, when we bring

D ixie to the market,” Alex said. ow that the school year has started, Ale and J ack plan to continue working with their business. They are even starting to work on fall scents like brown sugar, peppermint, apple cider and “other things that you’d want in the winter days,” J ack said.

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Tory Burch to open 1st Alabama site at Summit By L EAH IN G RAM


The first Tory Burch store in Alabama is set to open at The Summit this fall. The national brand currently has stores in Georgia, Tennessee and lorida. ocated in a ,4 -s uare-foot space between AC and Ann Taylor, the outside of the store will feature the signature Tory Burch design details brass finishes and a green awning. arge windows will allow a view of the interior of the store. Similar to other Tory Burch locations, the Tory Burch space will feature travertine oors, oa panel walls, cane tables and a mi of • WHERE: 214 custom-designed furnishings. Summit Blvd. Inventory at the location will include • HOURS: Monready-to-wear items, handbags, shoes, day to Saturday, watches, home, beauty and accessories, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; and the store will offer complimentary Sunday, noon to personal styling. Stylists can help cus6 p.m. tomers dress for an event, open early • WEB: tory or stay late to accommodate schedules, trac down si es, gift wrap and ship. The Summit customer is always in uiring to have the new and best stores to be brought to Alabama. This is e tremely e citing for The Summit and Birmingham, said indy ohr, mar eting manager for Bayer Properties The Summit. An American lifestyle brand, Tory Burch launched in 4 in anhattan and now has than bouti ues across the .S., urope, atin America, Asia and the iddle ast. The brand is available at more than 3, department and specialty stores worldwide. e are so e cited to bring this American lifestyle brand that embodies the personal style and sensibility of its chairman, C O and designer, Tory Burch, said indsay Bayer Shipp, creative director brand and merchandising strategist at Bayer Properties. The Summit location will feel bright and full of energy, and we are so thrilled this will be Tory Burch s first store in Alabama. Our goal is to focus on fresh concepts which continue to elevate the overall e perience and offerings for our customers and we feel that Tory Burch accomplishes e actly this Other happenings at The Summit include the opening of anna Andersson children s bouti ue and The Cowfish, which both opened in uly. . ill is undergoing a remodel and will reopen in the fall.

Jamie Green opened Ruff Kutts Grooming in June on the corner of Old Highway 280 and Shelby 51 in Sterrett. Photo by Sarah Finnegan.

Ruff Kutts Grooming opens on Old Highway 280 By S AM


I care about my clients and I care about their animals, she said. The rain fell and the phone rang, but Green grew up on a farm and developed a Ruff Kutts amie Green savored the chaos on une . passion for animals at a young age, but she Grooming er new business, uff utts Grooming, originally attended cosmetology school to had finally opened after one month of intenbecome a hairdresser. Pet grooming merged • WHERE: 5225 sive preparation and 7 years of e perience Green s two interests, and she began wor Old Highway 280 building. ing at ouble Oa ountain Animal Clinic • HOURS: hen I first opened the door, I said, 7 years ago. Monday through This was what I was supposed to do, Green had been grooming at another Friday. Green recalled. local clinic for the past decade before • CALL: 256Green s pet salon, located on the corner brea ing off to start her own business. 404-1012 of Old ighway and Shelby in SterIt was time for me to go out on my own, rett, provides myriad grooming services for so that s what I decided to do, Green said. dogs and cats of all si es and breeds. Green, ith the help of friends and family, however, limits her feline clientele to those Green transformed what was once a dance that can be groomed without sedation. er services include studio into her new salon during the month of ay. but are not limited to bathing, hair cutting and toeShe is now open for business onday to riday and has nail trimming. plans to open two Saturdays per month in the near future.

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Faith Life Actually By Kari Kampakis

Embracing humility and the unexpected There are certain moments in parenting where you want to hang your head in disgrace and immediately disappear. O ne of my moments came when my then5-year-old daughter rounded the corner of my friend’s fancy home ( during a fancy gathering for moms) surrounded by boys and holding a dead squirrel by the tail. She was clearly the leader of this pack, marching toward me and the other adults to show off their discovery near the woods. Since none of the boys would touch the squirrel, my daughter volunteered. They all looked so proud, these young explorers channeling their inner D aniel Boone and swaggering toward us like characters in a pioneer movie. I screamed, freaked out and rushed my daughter to the bathroom. While lathering her hands with soap and scrubbing them raw, I wondered what the protocol was. “Should I call my pediatrician? ” “Could she have contracted rabies? ” “What about other disgusting diseases that squirrels might carry? ” D ealing with wild animals was new territory for me. I t was something I ’d never thought to learn about, especially having daughters. Later that night, I replayed the sequence of events for my husband. I needed a sounding board to help me think through the incident because in typical mom fashion,

I blamed myself. I felt like I ’d dropped the ball in not teaching my daughter an important lesson that could have prevented the humiliation I felt. I told my husband, “I simply never thought to tell her not to touch dead squirrels. I t never crossed my mind that she might think that’s O K .” Clearly this story is comical now, part of our family folklore that I ’ll never let my daughter live down. And what I ’m discovering as my kids grow up is how this story also illustrates the secret plight of every parent. Y ou see, we try so hard to prepare our kids for every situation. We try to prevent every dumb move and decision they might make by having talks on what they should and shouldn’t do. And just when we think we’re doing well, when we’ve covered all the important bases and feel confident about our parenting and possibly even superior to other parents — BAM! O ur kid pulls a fast one. They disappoint us in some blindsiding way. They come out of the woods with an ugly surprise that mortifies us because other parents are watching, and now they know the truth. O ur kids aren’t perfect ... and neither are we. Anyone who thinks otherwise is an absolute fool. The upside of these moments is how they humble us. They keep us off the high horse. They make us more compassionate

toward other parents who may also be talking behind closed doors and asking questions like: “Where did I drop the ball? ” “What did I not teach my child that I should have taught them? ” “What were they thinking? ” The fact is, all kids mess up. They will all make some dumb decisions that we never thought to discuss in advance. I t’s not because we’re bad parents or they’re bad kids, but because we’re human and they are, too, and even the best parenting in the world can t change our awed nature. I f we’re parenting from a place of pride, the fall off the high horse could really hurt. I t could make it hard to look other parents in the eye. I nstead of worrying about our child, we’d be worried about how our child makes us look. O ur priorities would be out of whack. But if we’re parenting from a place of humility — as we’re called to do — we can avoid a painful fall. We can look other parents in the eye and say, “Y es, my child messed up. I ’m going to help them get through this and remember how often I mess up, too.” We can put our child’s well-being over our ego and not worry about what other people think, because in the grand scheme of life, the opinions of people don’t matter. What matters most is our child’s relationship with G od, and where that is headed.

Humility in parenting is good and essential. The humble parent is someone who I enjoy being around and trust for advice. Staying humble is a journey, especially if the kids are doing well, but somehow life has a way of keeping us parents in our place. J ust when we think we’ve got this parenting gig nailed, a curveball will come. O ur child will round the corner toting a dead critter by the tail. I n these moments, we are forced to admit we aren’t perfect parents and our kids aren’t perfect kids, but that’s okay because we love them anyway, even on their critter-toting days. Every child deserves parents who are humble enough to love them unconditionally and wise enough to keep incidents in perspective. While some incidents might be embarrassing now, with a little time and distance, they might be retold with a sense of humor we gain through firsthand experience. Kari Kubiszyn Kampakis is a Birmingham area mom of four girls, columnist and blogger for The Huffington Post. Her first book, “10 Ultimate Truths Girls Should Know,” is available on Amazon and everywhere books are sold. Join her Facebook community at “Kari Kampakis, Writer,” visit her blog at or contact her at kari@

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School House

Members of the Special Education Community Alliance, or SECA, pose in the Board of Education meeting room. From left: Casey Middlebrooks, Dustin Chandler, Janet Turner and Robin Schultz. Not pictured: Scarlet Thompson. Photo by Sarah Finnegan.

Speaking up for special education outreach know who to ask, there really are very little resources,” Schultz said. SECA, he said, has helped open doors for parents with children in special education and possibly opened the eyes of parents whose children aren’t in special education. The group meets every other month, and a steering committee helps select a topic for disBy ERICA TECHO cussion for each meeting. At those meetings, D ustin Chandler wanted to establish a way Chandler said he has had parents approach him for families to get answers for their questions to say thank you for starting the group, or say about special education. He wanted to create a they wish SECA had been established when resource for parents who might not know what their children were younger. “When you’re doing it alone and you feel their rights are in regard to special education. So he created the Special Education Commu- like you have no help, it’s pretty hard,” Chandler said. “And we want to try to provide a nity Alliance. The group, which first met in August , place where they know they have other parents has received positive feedbac in its first year to talk to, they have Claire Moore [ with Hoover and taken steps to provide more resources to City Schools] .” Since its first meeting, S CA has formed a parents, said Chandler, an I nverness resident steering committee and started to work with and parent of a child in special education. Claire Moore, Hoover “I think the comCity Schools’ new munity reaction has director of instrucbeen very positive, tional support. Moore and I think the parents When you’re doing it has been extremely in our school systems alone and you feel like helpful at establishing and especially special steady communicaeducation think it’s you have no help, it’s tion with the school needed,” Chandler said. pretty hard. And we system, Chandler said. Being a parent of a “The response from child in special eduwant to try to provide a them [ the schools] has cation can sometimes place where they know been very, very posibe a challenge, Chantive,” Chandler said. dler said. they have other parents I m a firm believer “Y ou’re almost to talk to ... that communication put out on an island, DUSTIN CHANDLER is really key to anyand there’s not a lot thing, so if we have of information,” he better communication said. Parents somebetween special edutimes have to turn to each other for information about I ndividualiz ed cation parents and especially in our schools, you Education Programs, or I EPs, as well as what can accomplish a lot of things.” O ne change that has come out of communiresources are available to their families, especially if they’re unsure who within the school cation with the school system is the implemensystem can answer those questions. While it tation of Hocus F ocus, Chandler said. Hocus is nice to hear a positive community reaction, F ocus is an instructional tool that includes Chandler said it is also difficult to now some arts-integrated education, and will be impleparents have had to go through the school mented in Hoover schools in N ovember, Chandler said. system without important answers. SECA also works to make sure its rela“I t’s one of these things to where it feels good to hear that parents are getting benefits from tionship with HCS is not an adversarial one, it, but your heart kind of breaks because you Schultz said. By maintaining an open dialogue, know parents have needed more information they are able to discuss potential issues as they … during their child’s whole education experi- come up, and work together on a solution when ence,” Chandler said. “I f we can help each other possible, he said. “I ’m a big believer in working with the out, that’s what we need to be doing.” Robin Schultz , a member of the SECA steer- schools for the best education experience for all ing committee, had a child in special education children, so I hope we’re creating an example to while he attended Hoover schools. His son was where we’re creating … a positive, strong relagiven an I EP in ninth grade, which helped his tionship with Claire and Hoover City Schools educational experience, but Schultz didn’t have so that we can work together,” Chandler said. F or more information about SECA, go to many answers. “When parents have questions but don’t SECAHoover.

SECA receives community support, positive reactions in 1st year of involvement

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Richard Stamper teaching 9/11 to Spain Park students too young to remember By S Y D N EY CROM WE


Every American adult remembers where they were on Sept. 11, 2001. Spain Park teacher Richard Stamper recalls watching the twin towers fall on his classroom TV . But now, the kids in his history classroom were only infants, or weren’t even alive, when it happened. Sixteen years after the tragedy of 9/ 11, history teachers are changing the way they teach about that day. Teenagers who were born in 2001 are now able to get their driver’s license, and Stamper said his social studies students no longer share in the collective memories that are so vivid for people even just a few years older than them. “I t’s strange that we’ve got kids coming up the pipeline now that were all born after 9/ 11, and it’s not lost on any of us,” said Stamper, who has taught for 11 years at Spain Park and is the social studies department head. “F ive years after 9/ 11, it wasn’t hard to talk about 9/ 11 because the kids knew it.” I t isn’t a unique phenomenon. Stamper recalls the evolution of teaching about the Cold War and the dissolution of the Soviet U nion, as kids born after the fall of the Berlin Wall entered school. Before that, he said the V ietnam War had a similar change from personal

Spain Park social studies teacher Richard Stamper holds an example of a political cartoon he uses as a tool when teaching about the ept terrorist atta s and their in en e on modern meri an lt re Photo by Sydney Cromwell.

memories and experiences to something confined to history te tboo s. “When that happens, you find yourself having to clarify and actually help kids understand the material,” Stamper said. “Time also tends to make people forget.” That means in the last few years, Stamper has seen more secondhand information and vague understanding of 9/ 11 from his students. He said they don’t always understand when and why the U .S. began military operations in I raq and Afghanistan. “Y ou wouldn’t think that they would be so confused … [ that] they’d have this level of misunderstanding,” Stamper said. “I t’s nice to

be able to clarify that historical time period.” Stamper said he also sees a lot of unfamiliarity with the origins of fundamentalism and religious extremism in the Middle East. “F or them, someone like O sama bin Laden or Al-Q aeda – those are vague concepts for them,” Stamper said. “F or people who lived through that … people of a certain age, we all know exactly who that person is or that organiz ation.” This makes 9/ 11 a unique teaching opportunity compared to the rest of the history curriculum. When Spain Park holds a moment of silence on Sept. 11 and when they reach modern history in the textbook, Stamper said he takes

advantage of that time to make sure his students understand the events of 9/ 11 and their impact on U .S. politics and culture throughout their lifetime. He also shares photos from that day as a way of starting conversations. “I always use that day, no matter where we’re at in the curriculum,” Stamper said. He also encourages his students to continue the conversation at home. “Y ou can address what happened in 9/ 11 during class and we try to tell them to go home and ask their parents about it,” he said. “Anybody who was around during 9/ 11, there’s a very good chance they’re going to remember exactly where they were and what happened.”

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Shelby County’s Student Leadership Conference cultivating future leaders By ERICA TECHO This month, students from across Shelby County will come to V alleydale Community Church. The hope? That they leave as student leaders. This mar s the fifth year of the Shelby County Student Leadership Conference, which started in the fall of 2 013 after a few O ak Mountain High School students attended a student leadership conference in Auburn. The conference is set for Sept. 14, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., and hundreds of Shelby County students between eighth and 12 th grade will attend. The idea of the conference started with eight students who wanted more people to get to attend a student leadership conference. “I t was just a really cool experience for them,” said O MHS teacher J ohn Milton, regarding the J anuary 2 013 conference at Auburn. “They were really inspired and excited about coming back and having an impact in our community.” O nce they got back to school, the students and Milton, who is the sponsor of O MHS’s Student G overnment Association and director of the student leadership conference, talked about what they could do in their community. “O ne of the things that kept coming up is, ‘ This would be great if we could have more students from our student government come to this conference,’” Milton said. The trouble with that, however, was cost. I t cost about $ 1,000 to send eight

Shelby County Student Leadership Conference • WHEN: Sept. 14, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. • WHERE: Oak Mountain High School • WHO: The keynote speaker will be Mark Miller, vice president of organizational effecti eness at hic -fil-

kids, including the cost of the bus and hotel, to the Auburn conference, so taking a bigger group to Auburn was not feasible. The conversation turned to finding something closer to their school, but they ran into a limitation — most conferences only take eight to 10 students per school. They wanted to send 30 or more students. The solution? O rganiz e a conference. Milton and the students researched what the cost might be — for a venue, food and a keynote speaker — and realiz ed it would cost around $ 10,000. The fundraising started. “Within a matter of about a month … we had raised $ 10,000 in cash donations or sponsors,” Milton said, adding that the support came from mainly O ak Mountain-area businesses. The student leadership conference was on. The first year had about 4 students attend, and the most recent

t dents gather for a gro p selfie d ring the Ch r h Photo courtesy of John Milton.

conference brought in 700. Every year they have held the conference, it has been free to attend, Milton said. “We did not want there to be any kind of price barrier for kids to get in,” Milton said. “A lot of kids aren’t going to be able to afford to pay, even if you charge 30/ 40 bucks, which is about the minimum of what these leadership conferences charge.” Allowing the opportunity for more students to attend also means it will reach more than just the “top” students. “We really want to try to reach kids that have leadership potential, but that spark hasn’t gone off with them just yet,” Milton said. This year’s conference will be similar to past conferences — it will last most of the day, include a keynote speaker and hopefully leave students with newfound lessons in leadership and a desire to change

t dent eadership Conferen e at alleydale Comm nity

their communities. The keynote speaker is Mark Miller, vice president of organiz ational effectiveness at Chic -fil-a. “The three components of the program are inspire, instruct and impact,” Milton said. “… There needs to be some sort of defining moment where kids have the idea or thought that they can lead or want to lead, that leadership is a cool thing and it’s not just for the 1 percent [ at the top of the class] .” After the conference, schools are encouraged to take on an “impact project” which helps with their school or community. Most schools will send along photos and stories once their projects are complete, Milton said. And while the conference is geared toward students, teachers won’t leave empty handed. Teachers receive curriculum packets that help carry leadership concepts throughout

the school year. About 30 kids from each high school in the Shelby County School D istrict and 30 eighth graders from each middle school in the district will be invited to attend. It will be the first year eighth graders will attend, and the first time the school district is fully funding the conference. Milton said he thanks D r. Leah Anne Wood, coordinator of strategic planning and leadership development, and D r. K risti Sayers, principal of O MHS, for their help in growing and financing the conference. “F rom a financial standpoint, they have both been instrumental in making this something that is fully funded by the county,” Milton said. I t’s also exciting, Milton said, to know the school district recogniz es the conference as a worthwhile experience for students.

September 2017 • A23

Chelsea High School Principal Wayne Trucks has worn a bowtie nearly every day since August 2014, when the when the Chelsea High School football team beat Briarwood Christian hool for the first time in eight years he ornets have now won three straight games against their rival Photo by Sarah Finnegan.

KING OF CLASS Chelsea High Principal Wayne Trucks’ formal attire tied to luck



F or Chelsea High School Principal Wayne Trucks, every day is a great day to be a Hornet. And, since August 2014, every day has also been a great day to wear a bowtie. Seldom is one missing from his daily attire. “I ’m probably not in a bowtie when I ’m doing work around the house, and that’s really about it,” said Trucks, who entered his fifth year as Chelsea principal in August. I wear one 99 percent of school days and to all the games and functions and things like that. I t’s been neat.” But Trucks’ embrace of the fashionable neck garb stems from more than just affection. I n fact, it is rooted in superstition. D ating to his days as varsity girls basketball coach, a role he filled from 7- , Chelsea had struggled supremely against Briarwood Christian School, its neighboring rival. N ot once in Trucks’ tenure did his Hornets prevail over the Lions. That pattern of futility extended to other sports as well, including football, in which Chelsea had particularly stumbled. Entering the 20 14 season, Briarwood owned a 19-6- 1 all-time record against its familiar gridiron foe. The Lions’ last defeat at the Hornets’ hands had come in 2006. Tired of watching his teams lose, Trucks inserted fashion into the winning equation. “My second year as principal, we decided to change up the mojo, so to speak,” he said. To accomplish that, Trucks attended Chelsea’s 2014 season opener against Briarwood in a suit and bowtie. It was his first time donning the traditional tie’s more discernible brethren, and it worked.

O n Aug. 2 9, Chelsea squeaked past Briarwood, 3- , to snap a five-game losing streak that had spanned eight years. Trucks has worn a bowtie almost every day since. “I don’t want to mess up the mojo,” he said. “Since then we’ve had some success against Briarwood in football and basketball and a couple of other sports.” Chelsea has since recorded three straight football victories over Briarwood, the most recent a 43-15 thumping in 2016. The Hornets sent their bac ups in to play the final quarter. “I t clearly is the bowtie that makes the difference,” Trucks said with a grin, “so I ’m continuing to wear it.” And it accompanies him everywhere. He has donned a bowtie at cross-country meets, swim meets, wrestling tournaments and homecoming festivities. Luckily, he has quite the selection to choose from. As Chelsea’s success has swelled, so has Trucks’ bowtie collection. He has started to receive them as gifts from students, teachers, parents and friends. A recent closet count revealed he owns close to 50, many of them infused with a hue of royal blue — those are the ones he sports on game days with his suits. “I try to be professional. I try to show that I ’m serious about what we do here in the building,” said Trucks, who wears a suit almost every day, “but if I can add a little fun to it with a bowtie — and a craz y bowtie at that — I think it helps set a positive mood in the high school.” And on the football field. Chelsea will aim for its fourth straight victory over Briarwood Sept. 1 at Lions Pride Stadium. Trucks, of course, will be there in his lucky attire. “I ’m not going to change anytime soon,” he said. “I f Briarwood happens to play better than us that night, I ’ll probably keep wearing the bowtie.”

A24 • September 2017



INSIDE The Altamont School.......................... A24 Westminster at Oak Mountain .............. A25 Highlands School....... A26 Hilltop Montessori School.......................... A27 Jefferson Christian Academy....................... A28


Joseph Bruno Montessori Academy....................... A28


The mission of The Altamont School is to improve the fabric of society by graduating compassionate, well-educated individuals capable of independent thinking and innovative ideas. To this end, the school attracts, nurtures and challenges students whose commitment to truth, knowledge and honor will prepare them not only for the most rigorous college programs, but also for productive lives. Altamont is a small family of approximately 350 students in grades 5-12 with socio-economic, ethnic and religious diversity. Altamont is a good choice for students who excel in their present school but want greater breadth and challenge in all areas of school life. We combine an intensive, college preparatory academic program with a personaliz ed college search program. At Altamont, there are many opportunities for students to develop multiple talents by participating in arts, foreign language, community service, clubs, class projects, science competitions and athletics. Students also benefit from unparalleled service leadership opportunities through Altamont’s C. K yser Miree Ethical

KEY FACTS • GRADES: 5-12 • WHERE: 4801 Altamont Road S. Birmingham, AL 35222 • CALL: 879-2006 • WEB:

Leadership Center. Altamont is located five minutes from downtown Birmingham on the crest of Red Mountain in a secluded residential neighborhood. The campus features the Cabaniss-K aul Center for the Arts, the Pharo Art Studio, the Lacey-D ay Photography Studio, newly renovated athletics spaces, two science wings, a study garden, a 14,000-volume library and much more. Experience all that Altamont offers for yourself by attending an O pen House or scheduling a campus tour.

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Westminster School at Oak Mountain The Westminster School is a K -12 classical Christian school and a ministry of O ak Mountain Presbyterian Church ( PCA) . F ounded in 1999 as O ak Mountain Classical School, the school has grown to an enrollment of more than 550 students. The first graduating class matriculated in 2 006 . The leadership of Westminster is committed to a thoroughly Christian approach that includes shepherding the heart, training the mind, nurturing the soul and partnering with parents. Whether through the curriculum, on the playground or in day-to-day relationships, we want the gospel of Christ to be preeminent in our community. O ur vision is: Building Christ’s kingdom by equipping students with wisdom, virtue and eloquence. Since we seek to prepare each individual child for a stronger and richer relationship with G od and man, our primary distinction is that we offer a classical education. Some would understand this as simply an education in the traditional liberal arts ( which originally included the sciences) . A classical education is concerned foremost with teaching the tools and techniques of learning rather than merely the transfer of information. The goal is to cultivate life-long learners. We also assume there are necessary and helpful priorities in a good foundational education. G od made us to be relational creatures, and so we believe in the primacy of words and language in our curriculum. The natural sciences are also important because G od made the laws that govern the universe, and it is a joy and wonder to observe and understand them. Though the natural sciences are broadly significant, we believe mathematics is especially important as a foundation, as it is the “language” through which the various sciences relate to each other most precisely. inally, the fine arts are integral to a well-rounded education for all students rather than an elective for some. It is through the fine arts that a child learns to appreciate more clearly the forms of visual and musical beauty. Westminster is committed to a healthy community of faith and learning. All students in grades 7-12 are assigned to one of four houses.

September 2017 • A25

KEY FACTS • GRADES: K-12 • WHERE: 5080 Cahaba Valley Trce, Birmingham, AL 35242 • CALL: 995-9694 • WEB:




$2.5M $2M $1.5M $1.1M

$1M $.5M Photo courtesy of Bruce Southerland.

These houses, in large part, serve as the basis for community-building, competition, service and student government. Each student has a faculty advisor who acts as a mentor, both academically and spiritually, throughout their time in the U pper School. Westminster is equally committed to academic quality. We believe in discipleship and scholarship without one compromising the other. While the curriculum and pace is challenging, we are not a school targeting the aca-


demically elite. The core disciplines taught in the U pper School emphasiz e classical languages, the G reat Books, natural sciences and the story of humankind from the beginning to the present. The Humane Letters are taught as Socratic seminar courses. Students attending Westminster, beginning in kindergarten, cover the historical timeline ( from antiquity to modernity) two separate times. F ormal logic and rhetoric are taught as well.




As part of a capstone senior year, students have the opportunity to travel and study for two weeks in G reece and I taly after completing a presentation of their thesis paper to their teachers, peers, parents and administrators. I f you have an interest in taking a tour of Westminster, please contact K risten Williams at kwilliams@ or call 995-96 94.

A26 • September 2017

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HIGHLANDS SCHOOL F ounded in 1958 by educator, civic leader and philanthropist, Evalina Brown Spencer, Highlands School is an educationally progressive independent 4k-8 th grade school and 6 weeks-3-year F amily Center. D istinguished by its research-based, contemporary approach to education, Highlands’ faculty and staff partner with students and families throughout their educational trajectory to maximiz e student learning and wholechild development. U pon graduation from Highlands, students are prepared to thrive academically, professionally and socially in a constantly changing, global world. Highlands’ approach to learning systematically builds one success/ challenge upon another. As students move through our Primary, Elementary, and Middle grades, they are joined on their journey by a partnership of teachers, parents, and administrators working to develop increasing degrees of initiative, integrity, and self-confidence. Through uality time with teachers, open and meaningful dialogue with each student’s parents, robust learning opportunities which include arts appreciation, physical education, character and leadership development, combined with rigorous academic programming creates a special learning environment at a most critical span in a student’s life. We deliver a curriculum from early childhood through the eighth grade that challenges every student to reach his or her potential and prepares them for lifelong success. O ur culture emphasiz es academic excellence in a supportive environment. To this end, we see the importance and value of embedding social-emotional learning throughout our school day. Research has been clear that academic learning is impacted by social and emotional competence. Ever mindful of these priorities, our strategic roadmap includes differentiated learning strategies, appropriate and seamless integration of technology, as well as robust global education experiences. Highlands’ faculty and staff are constantly

KEY FACTS • • • •

GRADES: 4K-8 WHERE: 4901 Old Leeds Road CALL: 956-9731 WEB:

“ exploring the most effective approaches to education for students. Throughout these endeavors, we believe that the most effective learning occurs when it is relevant and students are focused and engaged. Woven throughout our teaching and learning is a project-based learning approach – one in which students develop skills for living in a knowledge-based, highly technological society. They actively e plore realworld problems and authentically engage in content. As project work is cross-curricular, students learn to apply skills, knowledge, and strategies from a variety of content areas and curriculum standards are addressed while developing critical thinking, problem-solving ability, collaboration, communication, and

creativity. O ur graduating 8 th graders leave with confidence, are not afraid to ta e ris s, are in charge of their own educational journey and have developed the leadership skills to excel in high school and beyond.


► an ed on The Best Schools list of the Top Private lementary Schools in the U nited States. ► Our 3rd- th graders are in the top percent of all independent school students in ERB mathematics test scores and in the top 15 percent of all independent school students in ERB reading comprehension test scores. School-wide curriculum concentrated on. ► School-wide curriculum concentrated on

Highlands’ education of the whole child is unsurpassed. The in-depth instruction in music, art and foreign language is an uncommon gift to our children. Friends and relatives express amazement at students’ knowledge of subjects such as music theory and history, art history and technique, and three foreign languages.


2 1st century skill include creativity, collaboration, communication, critical thinking and cooperation. ► ow Student-Teacher ratios allowing for personaliz ed attention guaranteeing individual success for students.


Hilltop Montessori

Hilltop Montessori School and its stakeholders are involved members of the Birmingham community and have been for over two decades. The school celebrated its 2 0th anniversary last year with an expansion of their campus, doubling the campus siz e to a 7 million dollar facility. Located in the beautiful Town of Mt Laurel, off of Highway 41 near G reystone and Shoal Creek, Hilltop is convenient to Highway 2 8 0, while also nestled in a tranquil wooded area. Hilltop supports the community by participating in neighborhood events, community service projects, sports teams and academic competitions. Accredited and established, Hilltop graduates leaders in the community, including 1 F ulbright Scholar, 6 N ational Merit scholars, over 100 Honor Society students and national award winners in science, technology, foreign language and mathematics. This includes an I ntel Science and Engineering national winner and a state winner of the N ational G eography Bee. Hilltop is accredited under AdvancED / The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools ( SACS) , The Southern Association of I ndependent Schools ( SAI S) and their toddler, preschool and kindergarten programs are accredited by The American Montessori Society ( AMS) . HMS is also the only private school in the state to carry all three accreditations and was the first certified green elementary school in Alabama. Additionally, HMS is a member of The I nternational Montessori Council ( I MC) and The N ational Council of Private School Accreditation ( N CPA) . The beautiful, wooded campus is also certified with the , ational ildlife ederation. oused in a certified green school, in the Shelby County area, the school attracts the best and brightest in Birmingham. A native plant trail, edible gardens, an apiary and outdoor classrooms complete the building and offer a picturesque setting for the students to pursue their passions, develop a love of learning and work toward their fullest potential.

KEY FACTS • GRADES: 18 months-8th grade • WHERE: 6 Abbott Square Birmingham, AL 35242 • CALL: 437-9343 • WEB:

The small student-teacher ratio of 1 to 12 , as well as daily Spanish immersion classes and a full, authentic Montessori curriculum helps to address the whole child: academically, socially and emotionally. State of the art technology in the elementary and middle school prepare learners to thrive in the 2 1st century. The school is proud to celebrate its 2 1st anniversary this school year and looks forward to the first school year with their campus e pansion complete.

September 2017 • A27

A28 • September 2017


Jefferson Christian Academy


J CA is a private Christian school serving students from eight weeks through the 12 th grade. We offer a full school experience in a positive environment where self-esteem and confidence can thrive. At CA, we encourage the development of the entire child academically, socially, physically and spiritually. We are fully accredited by SACS/ AdvancED and the N ational Christian School Association. O ur students score an average of almost two grade levels above the current grade on standardi ed tests, and our average ACT scores are higher than the state and national averages. O ur growing 2 1st century teaching and learning program promotes creativity,

KEY FACTS • GRADES: 8 weeks-12th grade • WHERE: 1500 Heritage Place Drive Birmingham, AL 35210 • CALL: 956-9111 • WEB:

critical thin ing, communication and collaboration. O ur iPad initiative infuses technology into education and prepares our students for a future career in a global society. V isit our website at or call 956 -9111 to schedule a visit and let us tell you more!

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Joseph Bruno Montessori Academy

O ur educational practices are built around the belief that children are born with the need to explore and discover and a strong desire to learn. We treat their curiosity and creativity with great care, allowing them to e plore their interests from an early age. Lessons provided make learning exciting and stimulate desire to find out more. essons are given to small groups or individuals so they can understand the concepts presented. O ur students are our first priority, and we ta e time to listen and help them find answers. Older students learn through seminars, lab e periments and hands-on pro ects. eading, research and discussion are important parts of our curriculum. At B A, we encourage our students to develop independence, responsibility, resourcefulness and organiz ational skills. I n the ower lementary, students learn to use individual work plans listing their weekly goals. hen you visit B A, you see students working individually and cooperatively, en oying the total learning e perience. The enthusiasm must be seen to be believed.

KEY FACTS • GRADES: Toddlers through 8th grade • WHERE: 5509 Timber Hill Road Birmingham, AL 35242 • CALL: 995-8709 • WEB:

Children learn the importance of respect for one another and for their class environment. O ur high expectations for the students teach them to set higher standards for themselves. We invite you to come tour J oseph Bruno ontessori Academy and see firsthand the Montessori learning environment. O bserve the children as they interact with each other and the Montessori materials to learn through exploration and guided discovery.

September 2017 • A29

A30 • September 2017


Thousands of vehicles traverse U .S. 280 on a daily basis, and during rush hour, those same vehicles can be seen clogging up the roadway. Single passenger vehicles and buses alike are stuc in the traffic, inching toward downtown in the morning and toward the N arrows in the evening. “Right now, we can’t get you to town any uic er than a car because of traffic, urdoc admits. But, there are ways she sees public transportation helping make travel along U .S. more efficient. Even though the two BJ CTA routes on the thoroughfare see an increase in ridership, it has not alleviated traffic, urdoc said, and even if ridership continues to increase, she does not see congestion decreasing. N ot even a fourth, regular travel lane would help. “I t would be packed the day it opened,” Murdock said. “So highway expansion is not the answer. Public transit is.” And not just any public transit — new, more attractive forms of public transit. “We need to start thinking about Bus Rapid Transit [ BRT] , a single lane down the center of 2 8 0 that would go from Walmart to downtown,” Murdock said. “That way, the buses aren’t getting stopped with the traffic. hen it has that single lane, it has single prioritiz ation and keeps going straight. That would be the answer to getting people faster to downtown.”


The BRT lane would hypothetically run in the center of the interstate, which would both take buses off the road and make public transit more appealing to commuters, Murdock said. “I think the demographic groups might be different [ for Bus Rapid Transit or light rail] ,” Murdock said, “and I ’ll say that because the majority

Monthly ridership totals for the 201 Commuter and Highway 280 bus routes from January 2015 to July 2017.


2,500 2,000 1,500 1,000



2,074 1,806 1,489 1,100


500 0







J J 2015











J J 2016









A M 2017



HIGHWAY 280 ROUTE 12,000 10,145




“F rom an environmental standpoint, we’re happy to take that many cars off of 280,” Murdock said. The commuter route is one of two BJ CTA routes serving the 280 corridor, with the Highway 280 bus route serving 6,000- 8, 000 riders per month since J anuary 2015. High and increasing ridership numbers are promising for the U .S. 2 8 0 routes, Murdock said, and have led to some hopeful plans for the future of public transit in that area. “That particular route tells me that we probably should look at ways of improving that service; both of them, the fact that they’re so well used,” Murdock said. Hoover Mayor F rank Brocato said he is not surprised to see an increase in bus riders along U .S. 2 8 0, and said they are an important service to offer. “We believe that public transit is important, and that particularly to get people to get to their jobs,” Brocato said. “I think that’s the most important thing that we needed in Hoover and in the metro area, period.” Hoover has a lot of businesses and service industry jobs along U .S. 2 8 0, Brocato said, and individuals working in those positions can benefit from public transit options. “The simple fact is that a lot of folks in the service industry might not be able to afford a car, but they need to be able to make a living the best they can,” Brocato said.



CONTINUED from page A1



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8,429 8,031

6,000 J





J J 2015











J J 2016








A M 2017




We’ve been a system that people didn’t trust. ... If we get people to trust more in the system, the management, the dream, we’ll get more people on.

of riders at G randview are workers. We’re going after choice riders — those who have one car or more, and would give it up to get on the bus.” To obtain those choice riders, they would need people to trust public transportation and have the concept be more appealing than taking their own car. That comes from having a much faster way to get downtown, through a BRT lane, or through a more unusual option such as a light rail system. “Bus Rapid Transit or light rail is exotic — sexy,” Murdock said, adding that the exoticism helps overcome the “stigma” associated with public transportation. “D on’t you hear people say all the time, ‘ O h, I went to Atlanta and I got on the MARTA [ Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority] train? ’ or ‘ I went to N ew Y ork City, and I rode the subway’? ” Brocato also said he believes a different public transit method would help alleviate traffic on .S. , by appealing to a wider range of commuters. “Can you imagine being able to, if you live out in G reystone or Brook Highland or Chelsea



and you have to go somewhere downtown to work, going to a central parking station and hopping on rapid transit, and rather than fighting traffic anywhere from 4 minutes to an hour and 39 minutes, getting downtown in a half hour? I don’t know what the downside to that is,” Brocato said. I t is possible to obtain grants for BRT or light rail projects, Murdock said, although light rail is a very expensive project. She said she has been encouraged by Brocato’s support of public transit, and she hopes he will help lead conversations with other mayors along U .S. 280. To implement BRT or other changes, they would need the approval of at least six municipalities — Birmingham, V estavia Hills, Homewood, Mountain Brook, Hoover and J efferson County. That number could increase to seven if BJ CTA extended into Shelby County. “The biggest challenge is you’re talking about … [ is] seven jurisdictions plus the federal government,” Brocato said. “That’s the challenge right there. And it’s something we talk about all the time, and why we may have

difficulty in the metro area and growing is because we have so many jurisdictions.” While he thinks other mayors would be open to discussing public transit projects, Brocato said he is unsure when the topic would come to the table.


I n the meantime, Murdock said there are a few changes that can be made to the U .S. 280 routes — and ones that can be made on a shorter timeline. Those changes include having buses stop more frequently on U .S. 280, which would be done by adding more buses to the route. Murdock said BJ CTA will get new buses by the end of the year. They also plan to work to build community trust in the transit system, Murdock said. “We’ve been a system that people didn’t trust. They didn’t trust that the buses would be on time. They didn’t trust that there was sound management,” she said. “I f we get people to trust more in the system, the management, the dream, we’ll get more people on.” She also hopes to get more people thinking about innovative transit. Professionals working downtown want to be able to avoid traffic, she said, and millennials want to have reliable transportation without having to own a car. Both groups have similar needs, she said, and they are working on getting the message of public transit out to those groups. “We need to have our community start dreaming,” she said. “D ream big for public transit.”

September 2017 • A31 Left: Oak Mountain Robotics Club adviser Sherri Whitehead discusses potential improvements to the team s ro ot with than Forrest. Bottom left: A team s o rnal detailing its ilding pro ess and pro lem solving he o rnals are dged in on n tion with their robots at various competitions. Photos by Sarah Finnegan.


CONTINUED from page A1 “O ver the last three years, it’s kind of grown exponentially,” Whitehead said, later adding that she hopes the program — and the number of students advancing in competition — continues to grow. “My hope is to build a program where students are seeing constant success, whether that is in competition or just in individual success.”


Teaching robotics is an immensely rewarding task, Whitehead said, but those rewards are not just trophies or ribbons. I nstead, it’s seeing students develop as problem solvers and team members. “What’s really neat about the program is the kids, they are learning so much,” Whitehead said. “They learn from each other, they learn from me and some of their mentors, but the thing is they don’t really realiz e they’re learning. They think it’s a game.” V EX I Q , the robotics competitive program for elementary, middle and intermediate schools, also teaches more than just STEM ( Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) skills. Students learn about computer programming and coding, but they also fill out engineering notebooks that require writing and communication skills; they learn how gears and motors can work together, but they also learn how to utiliz e the talents of team members. “There are so many life skills that come together in a robotics competition,” Whitehead said. That s so beneficial. And for some students, joining robotics means finding a place in their school. Cole At ins, a rising ninth-grader who first participated in robotics last year, re-evaluated his plans for the future in Whitehead’s class. I told her hitehead when he Cole went into eighth grade, he was like, ‘ When I grow older, I ’m just going to work at a video store, said eather At ins, Cole s mother and a music teacher at O ak Mountain Elementary School. “And now he wants to be an engineer.” As a music teacher, Atkins put her son in band, thinking he would enjoy that activity. When that did not work, they tried sports such as wrestling, but he did not find his place. “G oing to school, there was really nothing about school he enjoyed,” Atkins said. “So we struggled with si th and seventh grade to find him a niche. … B y the time he got to eighth grade, and they offered the all-year robotics class, he was like, ‘ Please let me try this.’” Suddenly, Cole wanted to get to school early to work on his robot, he found a solid friend group and his grades started to improve, Atkins said. “He really just took off, and Sherri did such a great job of encouraging him,” Atkins said. “She’s just that kind of teacher that sparks that, that fuels that and encourages it.” I nstead of worrying about the transition to high school, At ins said both she and Cole are now e cited about the change. Cole is loo ing forward to taking engineering-related courses, looking into scholarship opportunities and continuing in robotics at O ak Mountain High School. “I really would have not thought changing one class and just changing one extra thing would make that big of a difference, but it

ottom right a Mountain Robotics Club members Mabrey Whitehead and Carter stin pose with their Chinese teammates at the e Challenge World Championship. he world ompetition pairs st dents p with others schools from aro nd the world Photo courtesy of Sherri Whitehead.

really has,” Atkins said.


Atkins is not the only parent to see an improvement in her child’s schoolwork. J ohn Watson, father of rising eighth-grader Piper Watson, said he has seen his daughter gain a newfound focus from robotics, and she is applying that to all other aspects of her education. Piper was a lot like himself, Watson said, “going from one thing to the next” and having a difficult time remaining focused. That affected her schoolwork, he said, and led her to struggle with a few of her classes. “Being around a team … a nd being in robotics, it really has helped her to focus on this one thing that she really likes, but from that, she has backed into applying that same focus [ in other classes] ,” Watson said. “She now sees if she applies time and effort to anything, she sees a benefit from it. While his daughter used to put her energy into “things she already felt good about,” she is now willing to take on challenges and build her skills in those areas. This is the first thing that has gotten her locked in,” Watson said, adding that being around a team and other girls who are dedicated to robotics and improvement has helped Piper. “This is a great stepping stone for those kind of kids, who have never been in a team

environment,” Watson said. “They’ve got to contribute to the team.” Whitehead’s strategic team placement, atson said, also benefits all of her students. Piper is still learning how to program, but Whitehead placed her on a team with students that have complementary skills. “There’s a lot of different pieces to this program, and Sherri is great about, ‘ O K this child is inexperienced and needs to be put with this team,’” Watson said. “She’s really good about bringing different elements of kids together so that they grow as a team.”


Students in O ak Mountain-area schools now have the opportunity to get involved in robotics even earlier. O MES has a new STEM room under construction, and Whitehead has paired with teachers to introduce elementary schoolers to robotics. I nverness Elementary School has also reached out about starting its own program. O MES students are able to walk next door to the middle school to watch and learn from the middle school students working with robots. Those partnerships, between and within schools, are something Whitehead said she hopes to build. I n general, she hopes to see more students benefit from being e posed to robotics. “I would love to be able to help facilitate that,” Whitehead said. “I would love to see it

grow even outside of our O ak Mountain community.” Earlier introduction to robotics, Atkins said, can also mean students find their niche and find success earlier. I thin if Cole had had that opportunity earlier, we could have identified, This is something he really excels at,’” Atkins said, adding that she is glad to see coding and robotics as part of O MES. As Piper enters her second year on the O MMS robotics team and her last year at the school, Watson said he wishes she got involved “even earlier.” That could have helped her polish her programming skills, he said, but he’s grateful robotics is something O ak Mountain schools offer. “I look around the landscape of the state, and I see so many schools not even doing any kind of robotics,” he said, “and I feel so fortunate that O ak Mountain is so into it.” I n the Birmingham area, a majority of the teams in advanced competition levels only come from a handful of schools, Watson said. Each school has several teams, but Watson hopes the robotics trend spreads more evenly throughout the state. “I think anything we can do to push this to other schools, it will just be better for everyone,” Watson said. “I think the way the program lends itself, there are so many different skills that are needed, and you can pull kids along so far as what their needs are.”

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Mississippi State freshman, former Jag now pumps up Bulldogs


Morgan Lambert served as captain of the cheer squad at Spain Park her senior year and made the team at Mississippi State. Photo courtesy of Kelley D Photography.

The time has finally come for Morgan Lambert. A dream that has been evolving since she first stepped on a cheerleading mat as a 3-year-old has finally been reali ed for the Spain Par igh School graduate and current freshman at ississippi State niversity. “That’s all I ever wanted to do, was cheer in college,” Lambert said. She will now have the opportunity to do what she s always hoped for, as she made it through an arduous tryout process ay to secure a spot on the all-girls cheerleading squad at Mississippi State. “I was standing there with my mom when they finally posted the list, Lambert recalled. “I t’s old-fashioned. They print out a list and put it on the door. I went up to the door and saw it, and it was ust shoc . It still hasn t sun in. It s still so surreal.” O n Saturdays in the fall, Lambert can now be found on the sidelines of avis ade Stadium in Star ville, cheering on the same Bulldogs that her father, Gary ambert, played defensive bac for in the early 9 s. I really li e it at ississippi State,” Lambert said. “I told my dad I wanted to go over there on a visit

after I decided Alabama wasn’t for me, and I went once and it was ust li e, ‘ This is it.’” State was the only school she visited. er heart was set. And if she s as passionate about ississippi State as she was during her days as a Spain Par cheerleader, she will stand out immediately. She has a passion for Spain Par , Spain Par cheer coach Ashelie alla said. “She bleeds some baby blue, and I now she ll have that same passions for ississippi State when she cheers.” Lambert cheered on the varsity s uad at Spain Par her unior and senior years, serving as captain her final year. While directing cheers during football games, Lambert would sometimes get so wrapped up in the emotions of the game that she would need a slight nudge from alla to remember her primary duty. Coach alla would have to come up to me on the sidelines sometimes, Lambert said. “I would get so into the game, I ’d forget and we’d all be standing there in silence, and it was my fault, but I was so into it.” But alla said she would much rather have someone with as much passion and nowledge of the game than a captain that lac ed eal or excitement.

She can tell you who completed that third down pass, alla said. She would get so excited and want to see her peers do well. alla said that ambert s cheerleading talent combined with her people s ills gave her a great shot at ma ing the team at ississippi State. She s that rare person that communicates that spirit outwardly as well, alla said. She s a great all-around person, great all-around student, great representation of this school. She s one of those that you wish you had of those ind of ids. alla gave ambert the opportunity to coach the upcoming freshman team in the spring, an e perience that opened her eyes to the possibility of coaching in the future. “She loves cheerleading. She loves to see people get better, and I new that she would ta e that and translate that down to the freshmen, alla said. ambert s wor with Inside Cheerleading Magaz ine during her high school days left her with a hope of getting into some form of broadcasting or ournalism, something that she plans to pursue at ississippi State. But there will be options, She s already got one standing offer. I told her to hurry up so you can come bac and coach with me, alla said.

B2 • September 2017

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Y our Health Today F e a s t a n d F a m i n e By Dr. Irma Leon Palmer

F or most Americans, fasting is thought of as a painful and difficult weight loss gimmic . owever, as it turns out, our bodies were built for periodic cycles of feast and famine. In fact, utili ing intermittent fasting can reset one s metabolism to function as it was intended to, A , allow the body to lose weight the healthy way Intermittent fasting mimics the eating habits of our ancestors. They did not have access to grocery stores or food at all times. They would go through periods of feast and famine periodically. In this country, Americans are in a constant feast mode, way too often. This means that the body is vigorously trying to digest and absorb nutrients. On this schedule, the body is trying to repair itself uic ly between feedings. Therefore, healthy metabolism completely stops functioning overtime. owever, when the body is in a famine mode, it has plenty of recovery time to repair itself and restore proper metabolism function and begin to utili e fat as fuel etosis . The famine state intermittent fasting is the sweet spot of health restoration from a natural point of view. The best way to maintain consistent healthy metabolism is to practice intermittent fasting. Intermittent fasting is or 4 hour periods without food. Before you panic, understand that there will be food consumed every day. uring an hour fast, you would eat dinner li e usual, say around p.m., and then not eat your first meal til the ne t day until around noon. This is do-able Additionally, during a 4 hour fast, you would continue fasting until dinner time the ne t evening. This allows your metabolism and your body to reset and replenish.

British author and ournalist r. ichael osley wrote a boo about intermittent fasting, and he emphasi es a fasting schedule called the . uring this schedule one would be eating normally five days a wee and fasting for two. On fasting days, r. osley recommends cutting food down to one-fourth of your normal daily calories, or about calories for men and about for women, along with plenty of water. The reality is intermittent fasting is effective. It impacts two significant hormones insulin and human growth hormone G . uring the famine state, insulin levels go down because the body is burning fat for fuel. As a result, this helps elevate human growth hormone which can burn fat at a higher level, allowing the body to sustain and build muscle. Additionally, intermittent fasting reduces o idative stress because fasting decreases the buildup of o idative radicals in the cell which prevents o idative damage to cellular proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids related with aging and disease. A bonus astly, consider adding high intensity interval training in your fasting schedule. This can go a long way toward eliminating unwanted weight. There has plenty of available research demonstrating the benefits of fasting on brain function. r. ar attson of the ational Institutes on Aging, has been testing intermittent fasting on genetically engineered mice. As unfortunate as it is, these mice have been genetically engineered to develop dementia or Al heimer s. ith these mice, they ll develop dementia around a year old which is about 4 to years old in a human.

hen he put the mice on a fasting diet, they developed dementia in two years, which is e uivalent to a human in their 9 s. hen r. attson put them on a un food diet, they developed dementia in nine months. hen he studied the brains of the mice that he had put on a fasting diet, he discovered about 4 percent new brain cells had grown in the area related with memory. That is very interesting considering the rapid rate of baby boomers developing Al heimer s and ementia. owever, fasting is not for everyone If you re a diabetic or hypoglycemic, you should be e tra cautious with intermittent fasting. Plan the fasting period and foods to consume accordingly. Individuals that should completely avoid fasting include those with chronic stress such as adrenal fatigue and cortisol dysregulation. Pregnant or nursing mothers should also avoid fasting. That is an important time for the baby. They ll need nutrients from the mother during and after birth. Intermittent fasting of is not a diet, it s a lifestyle. imic ing the eating patterns of our ancestors, which were in state of constant feast or famine, and ma ing smart food choices every time you eat, will not only produce ama ing metabolic results, but also help you to lose weight the healthy way. Consider a diet focused solemnly on nutritious meals. A diet with plenty of raw organic foods and healthy fats, and high- uality proteins. This will give you a big head start on good health and create remar able eating habits. If you need help, give us a call. e are ust around the corner at Inverness Corners on ighway .

September 2017 • B3

B4 • September 2017

280 Living


Cr o s s s e i z e s o p p o r t u n i t y a t S a m f o r d By K Y L E P ARM L EY

Julianna Cross hit for a .399 average with a team-high 62 runs scored during her senior season at Spain Park. Photo by Kyle Parmley.

J ulianna Cross thought she could give it up. She thought that after playing the game of softball for the majority of her life, and reaching the state tournament three times in her six years as a varsity player at Spain Park High School, she’d had enough. She got caught thinking that she might want to be a “normal” student, one that focuses on her studies and enjoys all the social opportunities that come along with college. “That was not the case at all,” she said. Cross was admittedly on the fence about playing softball at the college level for parts of her high school career, despite knowing without a doubt she had the talent to play at the next level. But when the opportunity arose to continue her career at Samford U niversity, she jumped at the chance. “I felt very welcomed and very blessed to have this opportunity, because I know Samford’s a good school and a good program to be in,” Cross said. Cross said that she thought her career was over after Spain Park was eliminated from the Class 7A state tournament in late May — not one of her favorite memories to recollect. “When I put my cleats up after the state tournament, it was just sad,” she said. “I t was a couple weeks after that, I got the opportunity [ at Samford] .” F or her senior season, Cross was a consistent force near the top of the lineup all season along, registering a .399 batting average, 32 runs batted in, and a team-high 62 r uns scored. That stretch without softball was no fun for someone so used to playing the game. “I ’m dying,” she recalled thinking. “I ’m not hitting a ball. I ’m not doing anything.” N o longer will Cross have to contemplate the end of her career, as she will have a chance to don

a Bulldogs uniform for the next four years. “I want to take advantage of the time I have left, because it’s going to go by fast,” she said. The connection with Samford coach Mandy Burford has been established for quite some time now. Abbie Miranda, Cross’ cousin, concluded an illustrious career with the Bulldogs during the spring. “Abbie’s told me that it’s hard work and if you’re not committed, then don’t do it,” Cross said. I f there was any doubt about Cross’ commitment level to continue playing, that was all erased during the wee s following her final high school game. “I ’m committed now and I want to do it,” she said. She has enjoyed getting back to doing softball activities. D uring the summer, her routine consisted of running and lifting weights among other things instituted for all of Samford’s softball players. She knows the challenge of actually making it onto the field during her freshmen season will be difficult, but she feels that playing at Spain Par and her relationship with coach C.J . Hawkins have prepared her to compete for her spot. “I t’s been really challenging,” Cross said. “I ’m prepared. We have a close bond. I feel like I can go to her for anything.” “I n 201 1, I saw J ulianna on the Berry Middle School team and I knew that she had a special gift and talent that could play at the D 1 level,” Hawkins said. “I ’m happy for J ulianna and her family. I am very grateful for Samford coach Mandy Burford and her willingness to recruit within our state.” But the person most excited about Cross’ commitment is without a doubt her mother, herself a former graduate of Samford. “She talks about it every day,” Cross said, with a laugh.

September 2017 • B5


Spain Park High School sophomore Charlie Trower is one key returner on a Jaguar boys team that has unlimited potential. The key to its success will be sustaining the cohesiveness. “I just think it’s going to be consistency and a little bit of fight,” said head coach Michael Zelwak. Photo by Sam Chandler.

Spain Park boys cross-country team aims to make a leap toward state title



D epth is currency in the sport of cross-country, and this fall the Spain Park High School boys team is swimming in riches. The J aguars return their top 15 runners from a season ago, six of whom have broken 17 minutes for 5K . That combination of experience and talent has the team believing it can snap a four-year absence from the state meet — and make some noise when it’s there. “This year more than ever we feel like we can push for a state title,” said senior I saac Shore. “I t’s something we’ve never won before, and we haven’t really been that successful in the past. But with everyone, the majority of us seniors, it’s kind of our last push. I t’s the last opportunity, and we re confident in our ability. Part of the reason Spain Park hasn’t advanced past sectionals since 2 012 can be traced to the stiff competition. Class 7A, Section 3 is widely regarded as the fastest ualifier in the state, as it boasts perennial contenders in Mountain Brook and Hoover, along with quality squads like V estavia Hills and O ak Mountain. But graduations across the area

have opened the doors for Spain Park. The timing appears to be right for the J ags’ rising crop of talent, which head coach Michael Z elwak said is tightly knit both on and off the course. O nly 2 1 seconds separated the personal bests of the team s first and sixth runners in 2016. The key to its success will be sustaining the cohesiveness. “I just think it’s going to be consistency and a little bit of fight, elwa said. “They’re going to have to put in the work now, and they’re doing that.” Z elwak’s front group logged up to 70 miles per week during the summer to lay an aerobic base for the fall. The goal is for the mileage to translate into seconds shed on the clock. Morgan Becker, a senior, holds the fastest personal best from a season ago. He placed 31st at the state meet, for which he ualified as an individual, with a time of 16 minutes, 34 seconds. But his teammates were hot on his heels. Sophomore Charlie Trower has run 16 :35, and junior J acob Warner has run 16: 36. Trower enters the season coming off a promising outdoor track campaign. He advanced to the state meet

in the 1,6 00- and 3,2 00-meter runs, recording remarkably fast times as a freshman. He ran 4:34 in the 1,600 and 9:52 i n the 3,200. Warner battled an injury for much of the spring, but his coach said he’s poised for a comeback. “He’s hungry and fired up and ready to go, elwa said.

Cole D illard, Elijah McK inley and Shore round out the team’s leading returners. Considering their close time proximity to the top three, any of them could emerge as the team’s forerunner on a given day. That isn’t quite the case for the Spain Park girls. The Lady J ags lost six of their

top seven runners, including leaders I sabel Caddo and M.K . Tedder, from a 2016 squad that posted a seventh-place finish at state. Holland Lidikay, a sophomore, is the lone scoring returner. “We’re obviously going to be building there,” Z elwak said, “but I like what I see.”

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280 Living

STRIVING FOR MOORE Oak Mountain cross-country head coach primed to begin 2nd stint with Eagles



J im Moore knows cross-country. As O ak Mountain High School head coach from 2 007-12 , he guided the Eagle boys and girls to state meet appearances each season. O nly once, in 201 1, did one of his two squads fail to advance past the sectional meet. Moore' s unprecedented string of success spoke volumes. N ow, O ak Mountain is hoping history can repeat itself. After a five-year hiatus, oore has reta en the reins of an Eagles program that has more or less maintained its sterling cross-country reputation in the years since his departure. “There came an opportunity for me to make the move back into it," Moore recalled, " and I said, ‘ sure.' " I n a way, it’s like he never left. Moore, who began his education career at O ak Mountain Middle in 1998 , retained his position as an honors literature teacher at the high school after he stepped away from coaching. He said his decision to relinquish the position was motivated by multiple factors, but the primary one related back to the classroom. Moore wanted to focus on teaching, and it paid off. He was named O ak Mountain’s Teacher of the Y ear in 201 3. The itch to coach cross-country, however, failed to fade even amid his educational success. When Moore was approached in May about the cross-country position, held last year by current assistant coach K risti Posey, he gladly accepted. “I just love it too much,” he said. “I had to come back.” Refreshed and recharged, Moore spent the summer acquainting himself with his new teams. e said he felt nervous at first, unsure

Under new head coach Jim Moore, the Oak Mountain High School girls cross-country team i i to if fo its fi st st te eet sin e Photo by Sam Chandler.

about how returning runners would react to a new presence. But introductions went smoothly, he said, and the critical coach-athlete bond took shape through a unifying combination of sweat and steps. N ow, Moore said he is just “pumped” to begin the season. And he should be.

The O ak Mountain boys and girls return a healthy mix of established names and fresh faces that should contend for tickets to state. But Moore also knows it won’t be easy. Section 3 in Class 7A remains as hypercompetitive as it was during his first stint as coach. “I t’s always going to be a challenge, so our focus really is this year on doing all the little

things right,” Moore said.” I f we do the little things correctly — the training, the off days off, the hard days hard, the eating, the sleeping — if we focus on all those little things, then the victories will come, and the PRs will come.” The O ak Mountain boys earned back-to-back top five finishes in 7A the past two seasons. But key pieces from those squads, namely All-State standouts Cole Stidfole and Caleb V an G effen, have graduated. That means swift returners like Bryce K eefover and J onah Barrett, a pair of juniors, and Eric Marin, a senior, will need to fill those front-running roles. All three broke 17 minutes for 5K in 2016. “We’re going to lean on our middle pack guys to push the front up,” Moore said. While the boys will shoot to sustain success, the O ak Mountain girls will aim to regain it. They have not advanced to state as a team since 2 012 , and Moore said they’re hungry to end the skid. Experience is on their side. The Eagles return the majority of their roster, including sophomore Evie Bell, and could receive a substantial boost from junior N icole Payne. Payne is a two-time All-State cross-country performer who missed the 2 016 season due to a torn ACL. As of late J uly, Moore said Payne was planning to compete, but her status hinged on her schedule. Payne also excels on the soccer field and plays year round. Either way, Moore likes the group he’s got. He’s ready to start the season-long race. “I ’m excited to see what these kids are going to do,” he said. “They’re giving me a lot of effort, and they’re understanding kind of where I ’m coming from now. I t’s going to be a great season.”

i oo h isti n hoo senio n , ete ns t ’s ss sho be in the h nt fo n in i i

September 2017 • B7

o e st te o t oo t st te oss o nt

ong the to fi e in the , n fie eet his f , he tit e Photo by Sarah Finnegan.

Passion fuels Briarwood Christian senior Zack Howard’s every stride By S AM


ac oward identifies with the words of Steve Prefontaine. As the iconic distance runner once said, To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift. This motivational motto e plains why oward, a Briarwood Christian School senior, pushes himself to run through, not to, the finish line during ta ing wor outs that challenge both mind and body. In late uly, for instance, he clic ed off three, -mile repeats at a pace close to minutes, seconds per rep, cruising until full completion on each. Summer training has been really good, said oward, his hat turned bac ward as he prepared to set out on an evening run in August. I ve been putting in a lot of miles. The motivational motto also e plains why oward, who began running in eighth grade after getting cut from the middle school basetball team, allocates time each day to practice multiple methods of recovery. e endures muscle-numbing ice baths, engages in fre uent tussles with a foam roller and ensures he accumulates the perfect amount of shut-eye. Sleep sustains. A little more than eight hours, or sometimes even nine hours every night, he said. All of this the motto, the drive, the meticulousness e plains why oward enters the 7 cross-country season as a bona fide candidate to become his school s first individual state champion in nearly two decades. The ions Ben hita er last won a cross-country crown in 999, when Briarwood competed in the A-3A classification. I now that ac has the potential to be right up there at the very, very top, with the top two or three, said Briarwood cross-country coach Aaron argene. I now he s gunning for that. hy wouldn t he oward en oyed a brea out unior year in both cross-country and trac , catapulting up the state ran ings. ast fall he lowered his personal-best by more than 4 seconds, to 37,

and posted a fifth-place finish at the state meet. In the spring, oward ran 4 3 in the , meters and in the 3, meters. is progress culminated in a pair of top-five showings at the state trac and field meet in Gulf Shores. I thin the ey that really helped me was that I was pushing really hard during the season and during the hard wor outs, he said, and I m going to eep doing that. But oward, in a similar vein, will also be ta ing his easy days as easy as he ta es his hard days hard. ast year he discovered the necessity of counterbalance. The art of the easy run, as he terms it, enables his tired muscles to recuperate actively and effectively. olding bac didn t come naturally at first, but it never has for oward. argene remembers first witnessing his motor as a freshman, when his natural inclination for running and running fast pulled him ahead of his teammates during practice. As far as passion goes, argene said he hasn t coached an athlete with a level tantamount to oward s in the last years. e loves cross-country, and he lives to run, said argene, a Briarwood cross-country alum who oined the coaching staff years ago. e eats, sleeps, breathes running. That s what he does, and you start to see it in some of the other ids. They en oy running more. oward has channeled his passion into swift results, and he s hoping to shave even more tic s off his times this school year. Already, he s charted the October race when he ll aim to ta e down Briarwood s long-standing school record. cGavoc unbar, the 99 state champion, ran . onths in advance, oward also has plotted varying strategies for attac ing the state meet, which isn t until mid- ovember. e ll have hills to crest and competition to con uer. But when chasing a title, ma imi ing the gift means leaving little to chance. ither way it comes out, I now I m going to be giving it my all, oward said.

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280 Living


N o longer is the Spain Park High School volleyball team an up-and-comer. I t has arrived at the top and is competing with the best the state has to offer. K ellye Bowen was tasked with reviving a dormant program, and in three years’ time has done just that. Wins have become the expectation, and in , the ags finished with a mark, by far the best in Bowen’s tenure. Last fall, the J ags fell victim to an area that boasted three stout teams, with only two allowed to advance past the area tournament. Mountain Brook and O ak Mountain were those other two squads. Both made the state tournament and Mountain Brook went on to win its third straight Class 7A championship. “( Last year) was a huge step forward in our program,” Bowen said. “There was never a doubt in my mind that we were going to compete when we wal ed onto the oor. Bowen mentioned being mere points from notching wins against the two best teams in the state. The J ags took both Mountain Brook and oover the other state finalist to five sets and had chances to claim the matches. She also credited the eight seniors for leaving their mark in a big way. N ow, it’s up to the three returnees and a new cast of characters to maintain Spain Park’s

h ’ e i og n et ns s one of in ’s o e f ee ohnson Photo courtesy of Jimmy Mitchell.

status. Marlee J ohnson and Sha’K evia Hogan return as a pair of powerful outside hitters who can strike fear into every opponent. Both are

o tsi e hitte s

ongsi e

six-rotation players, and J ohnson has started on varsity since her freshman year. Caroline Horton will be the team’s senior

setter. While she didn’t garner a ton of court time last fall, she learned a great deal from entrenched setter Ellie N orton and has really impressed leading into the season. “This year, she’s just taken her role and gone full blast with it,” said Bowen. “She’s lights out every day with her energy and her spunkiness.” Allie D eSantis begins a long list of players moving up from the junior varsity team. Bowen describes her as a “bulldog” on the court. Her diminutive frame may fool opponents when she initially wal s onto the oor, but that impression does not last long. “She’s not very big, but she’s just so competitive, so energetic,” Bowen said. The competition to be the team’s libero is between Madelyn Lewis and Lexie F owler. Whichever one doesn’t claim the libero spot should still see time on the court, as Bowen called both “really good defensive players.” Sophomores Paris Moore and O livia Stark will hold down the middle for the J ags, and Bowen said they continue to get better every day. Lora Watkins and K endall I rwin are both currently working on the right side. With a relatively inexperienced team, the learning curve is steep, but as of the summer, the young players were navigating that climb quickly. “There’s nowhere to go but up,” Bowen said. “There’s lot of learning every single day, lots and lots and lots of learning.” The natural tendency will be to rely on J ohnson and Hogan to put every ball down on the outside, but Bowen wants all spots to be involved in the offense. She also thinks this group could be her best defensive team yet. With so many young players, there is always some level of uncertainty. But with each day, Bowen grows more comfortable with what she has. “I think this will be one of my most fun groups to work with, because we’ve got a lot of potential and we’re not at our peak at all,” she said. The J ags open the season at Thompson on Aug. 31, followed by Hoover’s J uanita Boddie Tournament over the weekend. Spain Park will open its home slate against Hoover on Sept. 7.

September 2017 • B9

Ba c k f o r m o r e Equipped with more experience, Briarwood eyeing further success

By K Y L E P ARM L EY I f a 19-23 overall record can be misleading, that was certainly the case for the Briarwood Christian School volleyball team in 2016. All season long, the Class 5A Lions challenged themselves with a schedule consisting largely of tournaments and individual matches against 6A and 7A teams. Coach J eff Robertson reinforced the point time and again with his team to focus on the process and not the results of each match, and it paid off with a state tournament berth in his first year at the helm. “Last year as a whole was very successful,” Robertson said. “Record-wise, we didn’t have a winning season, but as far as getting out of the girls what we could and to get to where we did, it was a successful season.” As a whole, last year’s group was fairly young, with just a pair of seniors in Alexandra O ’Brien and N atalie Crumpler leading a bevy of juniors. N ow those juniors are seniors, making for a roster equipped with maturity and experience on the highest stage. “N ow they’re learning how to lead and how to assert and take initiative,” Robertson said. “This summer’s really been a growing and learning time for them. They’re going to have fun, because that’s who they are.” Robertson believes their experience can only help moving forward, as the Lions will know what to expect down the stretch of the season. “N ot ever having that type of experience before, to now have that under their belts, we’ve been here, we’ve done this, we’re not going to have a ‘ deer in the headlights’ mentality,” he said. Anna D onohue and Sophie Muir-Taylor will take on the role of captains for the team. D onohue is the Lions’ libero and “backbone of our defense,”

This summer’s really been a growing and learning time for them. They’re going to have fun, because that’s who they are.


according to Robertson. Muir-Taylor missed last season due to injury but will likely end up in the middle for Briarwood this fall. She may also get some looks on the outside as a hitter because of her athleticism. G race Patterson is likely to join Muir-Taylor as a middle, with Carlie F oust and G race Mulvaney on the right side. Mulvaney played middle last fall, but moved to the right side over the offseason. aley Bruce has solidified her spot in the lineup as a setter. The junior is “learning how to take control of the court,” and Robertson credited assistant Luann Causey for helping bring Bruce along in that regard. Anna G race Portillo, Lauren Smith and Sage O ’Brien are all solid all-around players that can play on either side of the court. Linley G reen will play as a defensive specialist. The Lions’ roster will consist exclusively of juniors and seniors, which will give Briarwood one of the oldest teams around. Robertson plans to use that to his advantage by keeping the sophomore group together on the junior varsity team, in hopes that the chemistry formed with that group will translate onto varsity next fall. “They’re going to have a really solid J V season,” Robertson said. “We’re putting them into some good tournaments to challenge them.” O n the court, the Lions will open up the season Aug. 31 at home against G ardendale and will host the annual Serve-O ff Tournament Sept. 1-2 in the season’s opening weekend.


enio ibe o nn onoh e is the te ’s ibe o, t in n the b efense,” o ing to he o h Photo by Sarah Finnegan.

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B10 • September 2017

280 Living

Time to soar

Eagles make it no secret: They’re setting up for state championship Torie Denkers is one of Oak o nt in’s eight returning seniors on a team that has high expectations. Oak Mountain opens the season by hosting 15-time reigning Class 3A champion Bayside Academy on Aug. 31, before participating in the Juanita Boddie Tournament at Hoover on Sept. 1-2. Photo by Kyle Parmley.

By K Y L E P ARM L EY Expectations are not something that the O ak Mountain High School volleyball team is shying away from. “Without a doubt, our goal is to win state,” said coach Tien Le. The Eagles graduated one regular starter from last year’s group in J acoby Sims. N early any other season, Sims’ powerful presence on the right side and her great athleticism would be e tremely difficult to replace. But Oa ountain has a player ready to step in and take that spot in Cameron Rueschenberg. Rueschenberg logged no court time last fall while she recovered from a knee injury, but her presence in the rotation should make the agles on- oor loo almost identical. “We’ve got everybody else returning in all the positions,” Le said. “J ust everybody contributing and everyone else just getting a little better in each position, that should be enough to compensate for the loss of J acoby.” By no means do the agles e pect a state title to be handed to them, but they certainly have the capability to compete for one if they improve week to week and peak at the right time. Things change a lot from the first match of the season until the time state gets here,” Le said. “Team chemistry makes a huge difference.” There is no shortage of experience for O ak Mountain. Having a roster with eight seniors virtually guarantees that. The depth of quality returnees gives them options all over the court. O n the outside, Torie D enkers — who can put the ball down from anywhere on the court — is back, along with Maddie Moss. With Rueschenberg back in the fold though, the Eagles may move Moss to the setter position. Another option in either spot is Ashley Treace, who can set and is also a solid outside hitter.

Along with oss and Treace, athryn Beard and K atelyn F rey are also potential setters for the Eagles, but any could move to a defensive role if they lose out at the setter spot. uch of the lineup shuf e could depend on K endall Scharbert, a 6- foot-3 middle who the Eagles are hoping will take a big leap in her final season after she came on strong last year. “I f we are going to dominate, K endall is the key,” Le said. K aitlyn Lund and Leah N ielsen are two other middles that will receive playing time as well.

On that bac row, Bri Palmer and eller Lovvorn each spent time as the team’s libero last fall and are battling for the same role again. Whichever one is not the libero on a given day can also slide over to play defense. K aylin arren and auren Price round out the varsity squad. The agles pulled off a hard-fought, five-set victory against Bob ones in the regional tournament last year to qualify for the state tournament. Although there wasn’t much success to be had at the state tournament, just having the

experience in that setting will do wonders for O ak Mountain if it is able to return this year. “That’s huge,” Le said. “I t’s a totally different experience, a totally different set of pressure you have to deal with.” O ak Mountain opens the season by hosting -time reigning Class 3A champion Bayside Academy Aug. 31, before participating in the uanita Boddie Tournament at oover Sept. 1-2 . O ther key matches in September include a road date at Hoover Sept. 12 and a home match against V estavia Hills Sept. 28.

September 2017 • B11

Chelsea High School volleyball Coach Jessica Pickett anticipates setter Ashley Mock becoming the “quarterback of the team.” Photo courtesy of Cari Dean.

Hornets expect strong season despite several new faces By K Y L E P ARM L EY eading into her fifth year as head coach of the Chelsea igh School volleyball program, essica Pic ett is glad that she put an emphasis on building a deep program, rather than ust a strong varsity team each year. Otherwise, the prospects of this season after losing si players to graduation would be blea . Those young girls are e cited to eep up what we ve been doing and build on it, Pic ett said. Trips to super regionals have become the norm for the ornets, and they have been on the cusp of a berth in the state tournament a few times. That success has become part of the fabric of the program now. Pic ett said, It s ind of an unspo en of what is e pected of our volleyball program here at Chelsea igh School. It s been a building process, but I thin the foundation is there and already understood. or this year s team to be successful, seniors Ashley oc , adison Seay and Brittany Stanford will be forced to ta e on the load of the leadership role, after being able to sit bac and follow in the shadows of last year s older group. They ve been in the position to where they haven t really had to lead yet, Pic ett said. I had a tal with them about them steeping up to the plate and that it s ind of their turn. Pic ett said she anticipates oc becoming the uarterbac of the team from the setter position, due to her playing e perience and position, as the setter holds a great deal of responsibility in setting up the offense. Seay got some playing time last year as a defensive specialist, so she should fit seamlessly into a bigger role in that slot. Stanford

is an outside hitter. i e the other two seniors, she also has playing e perience, but will ust be as ed to carry more of the load. unior ules amer is e pected to be one of the ornets top offensive players, as she will be a three-year starter. After playing the last two seasons in the middle, Pic ett said she is comfortable moving amer to either side of the court as well. She s e panded her game some and hasn t played bac row for me yet, but she will be playing some bac row this year, Pic ett said. Sara Swee will get time at the setter position after playing as a defensive specialist last year. Sophomore ictoria Schmer is in line to be the ornets libero. She doesn t let a lot of balls hit the ground and she has very good court awareness, Pic ett said. organ cCarthy, ordan Par er and ope right are others who could challenge for playing time, as well as some beyond them. o matter who is on the oor, Chelsea s attac will li ely loo different than it did last year. Gone is much of the offensive firepower, and that will force the ornets to be more sound in other aspects of the game. ast year, we relied heavily on the bloc and our offense as far as hitting, Pic ett said. This year, we re going to have to rely on the pass, serve, and we re going to rely heavily on our defense. The ornets may not loo li e a state championship team when they open the season Aug. 3 at eff avis, but as e perience and confidence rises, the team should improve throughout the season. I believe that we re going to progress as the season goes on, Pic ett said. ust loo ing at it, I feel li e we ll be where we need to be once area play starts.

B12 • September 2017 Patrick Martin recently completed his sophomore season at Vanderbilt. The Spain Park alumnus s fin ist for the Jack Nicklaus Player of the Year Award. Photo courtesy of Vanderbilt Athletics.

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Awards piling up for former SPHS golfer Patrick Martin By K Y L E P ARM L EY The accolades have racked up quickly for V anderbilt U niversity golfer Patrick Martin in his two seasons in N ashville. The Spain Park High School alumnus burst onto the scene in the 2015- 16 season and immediately made an impact, pulling in All-F reshman team honors along with a selection to the AllSEC second team. This past season, the honors were even more impressive. artin was a first team All-S C player and a G olf Coaches Association of America first team All-American. e was also named one of five finalists for the ac ic laus Player of the Y ear Award, given nationally to the top D ivision I golfer in the N CAA. He led the V anderbilt team with a 70.34 stroke average, the second lowest in program history. “Looking back, it’s awesome, but it wasn’t a goal of mine going into the year,” Martin said. “That kind of stuff, you put your head down and play to the best of your ability, and if that comes as a result of your play, it’s an honor.” Martin said he began to feel like he had a chance to be nominated for the award as the season went on. He was able to sustain a high level of play and credited coach Scott Limbaugh, who was named the G CAA national coach of the year, for keeping the whole V anderbilt team “locked in” all season. “I t’s a great honor,” Martin said. “I ’m blessed to have gotten it. I had a really solid year, and it’s an honor to have been a recipient.” The awards this spring capped off a great season for V anderbilt, as the Commodores advanced to the N CAA Championships for the fourth consecutive season. They placed first in the stro e play portion and reached the F inal F our of match play.

V anderbilt also ended the season with the N o. 1 ranking in the coaches poll. “O verall, it was a really good year that we can look back on and be proud of,” Martin said. After an illustrious high school career, one that included an individual state championship in 2015, Martin wasn’t sure what to expect once he arrived at V anderbilt. It was a great team when I first got to school ,and I didn’t even know if I was going to play,” he recalled. Martin did play, and said that he focused on being solid and playing within himself. That yielded 10 rounds in the 6 0s and a solid 71.18 stroke average for the season. “After a good year, I started to realiz e that I belonged and I knew I could play with the best,” Martin said. “Coming into my sophomore year, there was a difference knowing I had the opportunity to be a part of the best team in the country and display really good play on an individual basis.” Martin’s current level of play raises the question of his future. espite the urry of success he has experienced in the past two years, he is not budging on his future plans. He plans to see his tenure at V anderbilt all the way through. “I ’m going to stay to graduate,” he said. “I came to V anderbilt to get my degree. Even right now, I ’ve gotten the question a couple times. I ’ve got a couple friends that are turning pro. The PG A Tour sounds great and will be great one day and it’s what I want to do.” Martin said he enjoys college, and still has objectives to achieve, including winning the national title at V anderbilt. “U ntil then, I ’ve got certain goals I want to accomplish in college and I ’m going to work to do that,” he said.

September 2017 • B13




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Photo by staff.

Taste of Shelby County marks 10th year By L EX I COON The Taste of Shelby County, which started as a way to support the Shelby County Schools Education F oundation and to show off Shelby County’s cuisine, has planned its 10th annual event. The event will be Sept. 14, from 6 -8 p.m. on the J efferson State Community College V alleydale campus, and will feature food from more than 2 5 local vendors, as well as a silent auction. K endall Williams, director of Shelby County Schools Education F oundation, said that four one-day Park Hopper passes to Walt D isney World Resorts, items from a variety of bouti ues, school-affiliated spirit bas ets and a N ick Saban autographed football are among the items up for grabs. Typically, about 400 people make their way

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to the event throughout the evening. “Some come early and some may not get there until 7:30 p.m., but there is still plenty of food,” Williams said. She said, too, that it’s a rare opportunity to have students, teachers, administrators, parents, elected officials, business partners and the general community together at one time. Tickets for Taste of Shelby County are $25 in advance and $30 a t the door. “Proceeds help provide resources and services for creative and innovate programs for the Shelby County Schools district,” Williams said. “I t is simply a fun evening with great food, [ a] great silent auction and it all helps the students and teachers of the Shelby County Schools district.” To purchase tickets or learn more, visit

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Chambers join forces for Tee I t U p! F ore Education tourney By ERICA TECHO This fall, the G reater Shelby and South Shelby Chambers of Commerce are coming together “fore” education. While in years past, both chambers have hosted individual golf tournaments, this year the chambers are joining forces to host the Tee I t U p! F ore Education golf tournament. “As we were thinking about 2 017, we are aware of the amount of golf tournaments that are offered by entities from all over the metro area, and we thought by joining these golf tournaments together, the businesses of Shelby County would have the opportunity to network with organiz ations from all over the Birmingham area in one big tournament,” said April Stone, executive director of the South Shelby Chamber. The chambers hope to have about 40 teams this year enough to fill morning and afternoon tee times, said G reater Shelby Chamber CEO K irk Mancer.

“The proceeds from the tournament will benefit scholarships offered by both organi ations and career readiness programs of the G reater Shelby County Chamber,” Mancer said. O ver the years, the G reater Shelby Chamber has built on its workforce development programs, which include K eeping it Real, a program that focuses on finances and budgeting for ninth graders; a career awareness fair for 10th graders; Communication Matters, a soft skills program for 11th graders; and scholarships for student and educator of the year. The South Shelby Chamber of Commerce also presents annual student scholarships. The tournament is set for Thursday, Sept. 2 8 with an 8 a.m. shotgun start. I t will be held at Timberline G olf Club in Calera. There are multiple sponsorship options, ranging from “presenting sponsor” at $4,000 to “green sponsor” at $150. F or more information, call 63- 4542, go to events or email Melanie@

B14 • September 2017

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The third leg of the Birmingham Stage Race will take place Sept. 24 at Oak Mountain State Park. Photo courtesy of David Tosch.

Birmingham Stage Race returns to Oak Mountain State Park By S AM


The third leg of the Birmingham Stage Race, a three-day ultra-endurance event, will take place Sept. 2 4 at O ak Mountain State Park. Participants will traverse 2 of the race’s 56 miles along O ak Mountain s trails in the BS s Sunday finale. The first two legs of the race will ta e place Sept. 2- 23 at Ruffner Mountain N ature Preserve and Red Mountain Park, respectively. The Ruffner Mountain stage will be about 17.5 miles, while the Red Mountain stage will be about 16.5 m iles. All three legs of the event will begin at 8 a.m. The O ak Mountain stage will take off from the BMX course on Tranquility Road. Runners can choose how many race stages they want to participate in, but

only those who opt to run at least two of the three parts will be eligible for awards. The two-day option specifically includes the Saturday and Sunday legs at Red Mountain and O ak Mountain. The registration fee is $ 8 0 for the twoday stage race and $ 115 for the three-day stage race. Prices for each increase by $10 after Sept. 7. I t is $45 to compete in a single stage. Those who register for any of the races before Sept. 7 also will receive a commemorative T-shirt. Last year, Southside’s Chris Edmondson won the three-day event with a collective time of 9 hours, 12 minutes, 53 seconds. Birmingham’s Sarah G rappo was the top female finisher in 4 . F or more information or to register, go to and search “Birmingham Stage Race.”

The Autumn Equinox Ultra trail race is set for Sept. 17 at Oak Mountain State Park. Photo courtesy of Owen Bradley.

Autumn Equinox Ultra set for ninth year BY S AM


The ninth annual Autumn Equinox U ltra trail run will take place Sept. 17 at O ak Mountain State Park. The event will consist of a 32 -mile ultra-distance race, along with a 16 -mile fun run. Runners who choose to participate in the 32 mile will traverse two loops on O ak Mountain’s Red Trail system — one in a counterclockwise direction and the other in a clockwise direction — while fun run participants will complete one counterclockwise loop. Three aid stations stocked with food and drinks will be positioned along the course. The A 3 mile will start at 3 a.m., and the mile will start at 3 a.m. Both races begin and end in a grass field near the ogwood

Pavilion. There will be an eight-hour time limit for the 32 -mile race. Advanced registration is open until Sept. 15, with fees of $ 40 for the 32 mile and $ 30 for the 16 mile. The top three overall male and female finishers in each race, along with the first-place male and female grandmasters finishers in each race, will win gift cards to Alabama O utdoors. But there’s more at stake. The top 30 runners in the 32 mile will receive an AEU trucker hat, while the top 30 runners in the 16 mile will receive an AEU running hat. A post-race party with piz z a, chips, beer and chocolate milk will begin at noon. To sign up or for more information, go to and search Autumn Equinox U ltra.

September 2017 • B15

Oak Mountain Mission hosting 11th Harvest of Hope luncheon By L EX I COON O n Sept. 12 , the O ak Mountain Missions Ministries will hold its 11th Harvest of Hope luncheon at The Club. arvest of ope accounts for a significant portion of our annual funding, so its success is vital so we can bring hope to those in need,” said Roddy Cooper, founder and director of the O ak Mountain Missions, in a press release. Oa ountain issions is a nonprofit organi ation founded in 2001 that provides food, clothing, furniture, household items and financial assistance to those in need in both Shelby and J efferson counties. Because this is the organi ation s only fundraiser and it generates about one-third of the mission s income, assistant director D ianne Cesario said the donations from the luncheon “are vitally important.” This year s eynote spea er is Shelby County Commissioner Mike V est, who received assistance from nonprofit organi ations himself during his youth, the

release said. i e s story illustrates the impact that Oa ountain Missions has in eliminating hopelessness among those who are most in need of our compassion,” Cooper said. A client who has been helped by O ak Mountain Missions will also be speaking. Throughout the luncheon, a silent auction will also be available featuring condos, jewelry, paintings, gift cards to local businesses, Rod and Reel and other various items, Cesario said. “Any money above the cost of the meal is a donation to the Missions,” she said. “The Missions relies on food drives from schools, churches, and businesses, but much of the food distributed to our families is purchased by the organi ation . The luncheon is scheduled to start at 11:30 a.m. with the silent auction to open at 10 a.m. F or more information or to reserve seating, call 6 8 5-5757 or email oakmtn missions@

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o nt in ission est of o e n heon is e t t he b Photo courtesy of Liz McGuire.

t aurel school s Renaissance F aire set for Sept. 2 9

hi s on the et o n in t b e th t tte ts to no eo e o n ing the en iss n e i e Photo courtesy of Courtney Kalnoske.

By ERICA TECHO t aurel lementary School s biggest fundraiser of the year is returning this September. S s enaissance aire, which will feature rides, food vendors and a silent auction, will take place Sept. 29 from 5:30-8 p.m.. The elementary school s PTO puts on the faire each year, and the event is open to the whole Mt Laurel community. G ames and activities at the event will include an obstacles course, basketball, bounce houses, a pirate-ship ride, a swing ride and the Tubs of F un spinning ride. F ood vendors will also be at the event, although a list had not been finali ed as of press time. The food will be sold from

vendors, and attendees should bring extra money for dinner. This year will also include a silent auction, which will once again be held online. “We had great success with our silent auction being online last year, said PTO president Courtney K alnoske.

Items up for grabs include gift certificates to local restaurants and businesses, signed Auburn and Alabama memorabilia, football tickets to college games, getaway packages and a variety of handcrafted art projects from some classes, K alnoske said. While the silent auction is online, attendees

should bring their checkbooks to the fair. Armbands for kids, which allow them to play the games and ride the rides, can be purchased at MLES for $15, or purchased at the door for slightly more, K alnoske said. Adults are admitted to the event for free, when accompanied by a child.

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Stuff the Bus diaper drive raises goal to 150,000 By ERICA TECHO This month, Skip Bondour plans to sleep on the side of U .S. 2 8 0. F or nine days, from Sept. 8 -17, motorists will be able to see him — and his tent — on top of a renovated bus in front of the Target shopping center. The strange sleeping situation is part of Revolt Ministries’ Stuff the Bus campaign, in partnership with Birmingham-based Bundles of Hope D iaper Bank. Bondour travels the Southeast working to “stuff the bus” with items such as diapers or toys. “O ne of the things that we do when we come to any town, whether we re stuffing the bus with diapers The diaper drive will be held in front of the in Birmingham or toys in Panama Target on U.S. 280 from Sept. 8-17. Photo City … our hope is to create a level courtesy of Skip Bondour. of excitement about what we’re doing there, that draws people in,” Bondour said. will feel compelled to run into the store O ver the last two years, the Stuff the and grab diapers to donate. They accept Bus diaper drive has collected more than diapers from newborn siz e to pull-ups, and a quarter million diapers — 117,000 in the Bondour encourages people to not only first year and 34, in . buy the box with the largest diaper count Bundles of Hope distributes around — those are typically newborn-siz ed. 2 5,000 diapers a month, and they hope to There s really a need for si es 4, , supply the nonprofit for several months, and pull-ups,” he said. “But we don’t want Bondour said. to neglect the other siz es, too, because “O ur goal is 150,000 diapers this year, that pendulum can easily swing the other and their distribution for a year is a little way.” over double that,” he said. “So our hope D onations will be accepted at all hours is that, in these nine days, we can collect of the day, Bondour said. enough diapers to sustain what they send “People can honk their horn [ at night] . out for six months.” I ’ll roll out of my tent and grab those diaPeople are welcome to bring diaper or pers,” Bondour said. “Honestly, I ’ll go monetary donations during the drive, and sleep deprived for nine days.” with a brightly colored bus parked on the F or more information, go to stuff side of the road, Bondour hopes people

Giggles and Grace is a twice-annual consignment sale at Asbury United Methodist Church. Photo by Erica Techo.

G iggles and G race returns this fall By L AU REN ROL AN D Asbury U nited Methodist Church is hosting its semi-annual G iggles and G race Consignment Sale this fall. The sale will take place riday, Sept. from a.m. p.m. and Saturday, Sept. 9 from 8 a.m. - noon. The consignment sale, which raises money for the Asbury U MC Children’s Ministry and its various mission projects, relies on volunteers who donate their time and consignors who sell their possessions. Those who volunteer or sell also get to shop the sale early on Thursday night. Anyone looking to shop will receive deals throughout the day F riday and Saturday. Most items for sale will be children’s clothing, toys, books, baby furniture, shoes, and other items. I tems left on Saturday will be an

additional 50 percent off. Mission opportunities will also be taking place during the G iggles and G race sale. Asbury’s food pantry will be collecting can goods and non-perishable items. Asbury is also looking for gently used shoes and socks for the N avajo Mission Life Center in Cuba, Mexico. O ther details will be posted closer to the sale date. U pdates can be found on the G iggles and G race Consignment Sale website, asbury, and the “Asbury G iggles and G race” F acebook page. U pdates can also be found on the Asbury U MC website, asbury gigglesandgrace. Those looking to donate their possessions or volunteer their time can find instructions and forms on both the Asbury U MC and the G iggles and G race website.


September 2017 • B17

Opinion My South By Rick Watson

Tools of the (new) trades his e ’s he se

issions n f n n i t e e t e ent hoo Photo courtesy of Matthew Britt.

JOHO Missions 5K at Chelsea Park Elementary on Sept. 23 By L AU REN ROL AN D The J O HO Missions 5K and F un Run is coming to Chelsea Park Elementary School on Sept. 2 3. The event is a fundraiser for the missions organiz ation Speed the Light in memory of J oseph Honea, a senior at Briarwood Christian School who died in 3. “J oseph was a phenomenal young man, full of adventure and compassion, said atthew Britt, one of the race organi ers. e couldn t imagine life without him so we started the J O HO 5K to remember him each year." Packet pick-up for racers will begin at 7 a.m. at Chelsea Park Elementary School. The J O HO Missions 5K will begin at 8 a.m. and end at 10 a.m. The registration price is $35 plus a $3.70 registration fee. I n addition to the 5K , there will be a 1-mile F un Run, which begins at 8: 45 a.m. and ends at 9:45 a.m. The registration price for the fun run is $25 pl us a $3.70 r egistration fee. Prices will increase by $5 a fter Sept. 2. Teams are encouraged, and once there are more than four people registered on a team, the price will drop to $25 pe r participant. “The J O HO 5K is a fun and exciting community event. We have something for everyone — from the avid racer looking to improve upon their personal best to the beginner loo ing to get that first race under their belt, said Britt. oin us for a professionally timed, certified race with a community atmosphere. Medals will be awarded in several categories. There are also volunteer opportunities for race registration, race set up and at the finish line. Additional information can be found at the website, joho5K .com.

There’s an old rake in our shed with a inging roc s. Grown-ups also find it handy handle worn smooth from use. We inheras a steely mouthed monster used to terrorited it from J ilda’s mom, Ruby, along with iz e a yard full of young’uns. many other things. I t is a handy tool. I ’m glad we kept it all O ur great nephew, J ordan, loves playing these years. The tools treasured by those who came with the ra e. The first time he saw the old tool, he immediately understood its purpose, before us were vital for survival. These and within a few minutes had raked up a devices that were used to scratch out a living mountain of pine straw that he used to pracfrom the land are now considered relics. The tice his swan dive. only place you see them today is hanging This tool will still be useful long after from the ceiling at Crac er Barrel. we’re gone, but this is not the case with As the nature of work changed, so did the other ones that became obsolete as technoltools we use. There’s not as much heavy liftWatson ogy evolved. ing today, even with jobs requiring manual F or example, a few days ago when I lost labor. I ’m sure my nephew, Haven, who’s a a bolt on the garden tiller, I headed to the barn. J ilda’s dad, plumber, would argue this point, but even he would be the Sharkey, never threw away a nut or bolt, but tossed them in first to admit that tools have made his life easier. a bucket. Whenever I need small pieces of hardware, I look These days, much of my work requires computer keythere first. Over in the corner, I noticed an old plow. Begin- boards, small digital cameras, electronic communications ning at the turn of the last century, farmers hitched these and social networks. A majority of the heavy lifting I do now is mental. But some days after hours on a eyboard, it tools behind scrawny mules to break ground for gardens. The first time I saw one in use was when my cousin, feels as if I had spent the day hoeing cotton. J ames Lee Robbins, plowed my mama’s garden in the late As I wrote this column, I tried to imagine what early 1950s. He used unique words to communicate with the old settlers would make of things today. I ’m sure they would mule. “G ee” meant turn one way and “haw” meant turn the struggle with how much tools have changed. I t took hours other. D ragging the old plow, he managed to break up a nice of sweat and toil to break up a garden spot of a few acres garden plot in a little over an hour. with a mule and plow. I m sure it would be difficult to wrap The plow in the barn has been there since we moved here their reins around the fact that today they could sit in the in 1980. I could sell it for scrap, but I keep it to remember air-conditioned cab of a high-end tractor and break up the same plot in minutes. how far things have come. Another tool we inherited was a “clinker-getter” tool. I read that some of these old tools are making a comeback I named it that because I was unsure what the real name for people moving “back to the land.” I ’d be willing to bet was. I t’s a device about 3 feet long with a mechanical if the early settlers had a choice between cussing a mule or pincher. People used it to remove clinkers from a coal-burn- riding on a tractor, they would choose the latter. ing stove or fireplace without burning their hands. It s no longer useful for that, but I repurposed it for entertaining R ick Watson is a columnist and author. H is latest book, visiting kids. Y ou wouldn’t believe the things they do with “L ife Goes O n,” is available on Amazon. com. Y ou can email this device. I ’ve seen it used for picking up J une bugs and at rick@ homefolkmedia.c om.

280 Living

B18 • September 2017

WINNERS 280 Living would like to thank all of the community members who participated in this year’s contest. To view all contest submissions, visit


Reese Unnoppet rocks her way down a slip and slide in Helena. Photo courtesy of Sonya Unnoppet.


Brandon Pockstaller, Sophia Bagley, along with Cooper, Beckett and Dax Martin, soak up the sun in the Highland Lakes Subdivision. Photo by Andrea Miles Martin, courtesy of Susan Pockstaller.

Elaine Simma walks around on the beach in Destin, FL this summer. Photo courtesy of Chris Simma.



A woman speaks with another patron at a market in Guatemala. Photo courtesy of Tiffany Thomas.

September 2017 • B19

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Real Estate Listings

5572 Double Oak Lane








5572 Double Oak Lane


$ 849,900



3508 Shandwick Place





2264 Brock Circle





2012 Kinzel Lane





300 Narrows Reach





698 Provence Drive





2409 Inverness Point Drive





3313 Shetland Terrace





4006 High Court Road





1004 Narrows Point Drive





1012 Pinecliff Circle





1458 Oxford Manor Circle





1182 Inverness Cove Way





3881 Oxford Manor Court





2101 Cameron Circle





2112 Chelsea Park Bend





220 Lime Creek Lane





4128 Park Crossings Drive





164 Wisteria Drive





260 Normandy Lane



Real estate listings provided by the Birmingham Association of Realtors on August 11. Visit

1458 Oxford Manor Circle

September 2017 • B21

Calendar 280 Area Events Sept. 1: Greater Shelby County Chamber Tourism & Recreation Group. 8:30 a.m. Location TBA. Visit business.

Sept. 7: Lady Antebellum. 7:30 p.m. Oak Mountain Amphitheatre. With special guests Kelsea Ballerini and Brett Young. Tickets $24-$180. Visit

Sept. 5: Greater Shelby Chamber Small Business Mentorship Program. 8 a.m. Greater Shelby Chamber of Commerce, 1301 County Services Drive, Pelham. Visit

Sept. 8-9: Giggles & Grace Consignment Sale. 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Asbury United Methodist Church. Visit asburygigglesandgrace. com.

Sept. 6: Greater Shelby Chamber Career Readiness Work Group. 8:30 a.m. Location varies. Visit business.shelbycham Sept. 6: Greater Shelby Ambassador Work Group. 11:30 a.m. Greater Shelby Chamber, 1301 County Services Drive, Pelham. Visit Sept. 6: Greater Shelby Chamber Small Business Work Group. 4 p.m. Location varies. Visit Sept. 7: South Shelby Chamber Monthly Luncheon. 11:30 a.m. Columbiana First Baptist Church. $15. Visit southshelbycham Thursdays: GriefShare. 7-8:45 p.m. Faith Presbyterian Church. Support group for those who have lost someone close to them. Trained facilitators who have experienced grief just like you will guide you through one of life’s most difficult experiences and provide you with the tools and resources to move forward. Join any time during the 14-week series. For college age and older. $20 registration fee (includes workbook and refreshments). For registration or questions call 991-5430, email or visit

Sept. 8: Greater Shelby Chamber Health Services Work Group. 8:30 a.m. Location varies. Visit business.shelbychamber. org. Sept. 12: Shelby County Showcase. 3-10 p.m. Heardmont Stadium. Hosted by Oak Mountain High School Band. All Shelby County bands will be performing. Sept. 13: Greater Shelby Chamber Existing Business & Industry Work Group. 8:30 a.m. Location varies. Visit busi Sept. 15: Greater Shelby Chamber Entrepreneur Roundtable I. 8 a.m. Location TBD. Visit Sept. 16: Chris Stapleton All American Road Show. 7 p.m. Oak Mountain Amphitheatre. Tickets $30-$70. Visit livenation. com.

High School Football Schedules BRIARWOOD HIGH SCHOOL Sept. 1: vs. Chelsea. 7 p.m. Sept. 8: @ Moody. 7 p.m. Sept. 15: vs. Wenonah. 7 p.m. Sept. 22: @ Fairfield. 7 p.m. Sept. 29: vs. Mortimer Jordan. 7 p.m. CHELSEA HIGH SCHOOL Sept. 1: @ Briarwood Christian. 7 p.m.

Sept. 8: @ Wetumpka. 7 p.m. Sept. 15: vs. Benjamin Russell. 7 p.m. Sept. 22: vs. Pelham. 7 p.m. Sept. 29: @ Gardendale. 7 p.m. SPAIN PARK HIGH SCHOOL Sept. 1: @ Muscle Shoals. 7 p.m. Sept. 8: @ Vestavia. 7 p.m. Sept. 15: vs. Hoover. 7 p.m. Sept. 22: @ Mountain Brook. 7 p.m.

Mt Laurel Library Events Sept. 4: Closed for Labor Day. Kids Sept. 1 & 15: Toddler Tales. 10 a.m. Meeting Room. Stories, songs, finger play and crafts for ages 19-36 months. Registration required. Sept. 1: & 15: All Ages Storytime. 11 a.m. Meeting Room. Stories and music for all ages. Sept. 9: Crafty Saturday. 10 a.m. Drop in and make a craft. All ages.

Sept. 19: Greater Shelby Chamber Entrepreneur Roundtable 280. 11:30 a.m. Location TBD. Visit business.shelbychamber. org.

Sept. 13: Mt Laurel Library ROCKS! 4 p.m. Get your creative juices flowing and join in on the rock-hiding fun! Rocks and paint provided. Registration required. Call 439-5512 or email mt for registration.

Sept. 28: Greater Shelby Chamber Governmental Work Group. 8:30 a.m. Location varies. Visit

Sept. 19: Picture Book Club. 4 p.m. Enjoy a picture book story with snacks and crafts. All ages. Registration required.

Sept. 20: Tween Engineering Challenge. 4 p.m. Meeting room. Registration required. Sept. 23: Lego Club. 11 a.m. Adults Sept. 7: Mt Laurel Book Club. 7 p.m. Meeting Room. Discussing The Genius of Birds by Jennifer Ackerman. Sept. 11 & 25: Legacy Writing Class. 5:30 p.m. Meeting Room. Write your history with the help of a professional writer. Registration required, $10. Sept. 15: Treasure Salvage. 5:30 p.m. Meeting Room. Registration requested. Sept. 18: Mt Laurel Knitting Club. 6 p.m. All skill levels welcomed.

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North Shelby Library Events Sept. 4: Closed for Labor Day. Kids Mondays: Toddler Tales. 10 a.m. Songs, stories, fingerplays and crafts for ages 19-3 months. Registration re uired. Tuesdays and Wednesdays: Hedgie Hello. uesdays at 4 30 p.m. and ednesdays at 11 30 a.m. Meet the library s pet hedgehog. Wednesdays: Family Storytime with Mr. Mac. 10 45 a.m. Stories, puppets and music for all ages. Thursdays: Storytime. 30 p.m. Come in your pajamas, have coo ies and mil and listen to bedtime stories. Sept. 2: Lego Club. 10-11 30am he library provides the egos, the ids provide the imagination and creativity. Creations will go on display in the Children s epartment. ll ges elcome. Sept. 7 & 21: Baby Tales. 10 a.m. Stories and music for ages birth to 1 months. Registration re uired. Sept. 11: North Shelby Library ROCKS! 4 p.m. Get your creative juices flowing and join in on the roc -hiding fun Roc s and paint provided. Registration re uired. ges 5-12. Sept. 12: Picture Book Club.10 a.m. Stories, games, crafts and snac s. Registration re uired. Sept. 12, 19 & 26: Tuesday Tech: Engineering. 3 30 p.m. ll ages. Sept. 20: Homeschool Hangout. 1 p.m. ges 7-1 . Registration re uired. Sept. 26: Sensory Storytime. 10 a.m. Snac free story time for children with special needs and their caregivers. Registration re uired. Teens Sept. 1, 8, 15 & 22: Open Gaming. 3 30-5 45 p.m. een ept.

Sept. 9 & 24: Anime Afternoon. p.m. nime and snac s. Sept. 12, 19 & 26: Tech Tuesdays. 3 30 p.m. Sept. 14: Manga/Comic Book Club. 4 p.m. Sept. 20: Homeschool Hangout. 1 p.m. ngineering challenge. For grades -1 . Sept. 21: Teen Leadership Council Meeting. p.m. pplications available online. Sept. 21: Teen Leadership Program. 30 p.m. lanning fall programs. Sept. 23: Teen Volunteer Day. 10 a.m. For grades -1 . Sept. 27: Teen Tech: Oculus Rift. 3 30 p.m. For grades -1 . Registration re uired. Adults Sept. 7 & 28: Color Therapy for Adults. p.m. Registration re uired. Sept. 12: Computer Comfort. 10 a.m. earn basic computer functions. Registration re uired. Sept. 13: Introduction to Microsoft Word. 10 30 a.m. Registration re uired. Sept. 15-16: Friends of the Library Book Sale. uring library hours. Sept. 19: Internet for Beginners. 10 a.m. Registration re uired. Sept. 20: Introduction to Microsoft Excel. 10 a.m. Registration re uired. Sept. 21: NSL Book Club. 10 30 a.m. ibrary Conference Room. Sept. 26: Email for Beginners. 10 a.m. Registration re uired.

St. Vincent’s One Nineteen Events Wednesdays: Baby Café. 10 a.m. to noon. Moms will have the opportunity to meet with a lactation consultant, as well as networ with other breastfeeding moms. he group is designed to give breastfeeding moms encouragement and support, as well as helpful information and tips from our e pert. Free to public. lease call Rosie at 930- 07 to reserve your space. Sept. 2 : Lupus Support Group. 10 a.m. to noon. his group will meet the first Saturday of every month. his month a discussion will revolve around a session. Free. Sept. 6 : Wake Up to Wellness: Freshen Up Your Fall Wardrobe at Spa One Nineteen. 9-11 a.m. Stop by the Front es . Sept. 7: Thyme to Cook. 4- p.m. inner is - 45 p.m. For ages -1 . ids, come and have some fun with others your age at St. incent s ne ineteen preparing a healthy and flavorful meal. Menu includes asy sian raps, Broccoli Craisin Salad and omemade Banana udding. arents, meet your young chef at p.m. and let them serve you their special meal. he cost is 5 per child, and 5 per family member with an advanced reservation. lease call 40 - 550 by Sept. 5 to register. Sept. 12: Blood Pressure/Body Mass Index Screening. -11 30 a.m. Front entrance at St. incent s ne ineteen. Free. Sept. 14: Wake Up to Wellness: Get Fit Together: The Benefits of Group Exercise. 9-11 a.m. Stop by the Front es . Sept. 19: Wake Up to Wellness: Fruit and Vegetable Month Tips and Squash Bowling. 9-11 a.m. Stop by the Front es .

Sept. 19: LifeSouth Blood Drive. 7 a.m. to p.m. ifeSouth will be set up in the par ing lot of ne ineteen. o registration necessary. Sept. 19: Wellness Screenings. 7 30 a.m. to 4 p.m. o stay abreast of your numbers, cholesterol, blood glucose, blood pressure, BM and waist circumference screenings will be held by appointment at St. incent s ne ineteen. Results and interpretation in fifteen minutes with a simple finger stic . he cost is 0 for both members and non-members. lease call 40 - 550 to register. Sept. 19: Comprehensive Diabetes Education. 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. f you have diabetes or are at ris , this seminar at St. incent s ne ineteen is a must. physician s referral is re uired. re-assessments given preceding the class time. lease call 939-7 4 to register. Sept. 27: Wake Up to Wellness: Meet the team from Alabama Nasal and Sinus Center. 9-11 a.m. Stop by the Front es . Sept. 28: Cuisine at One Nineteen: Twilight of Summer Farm Fresh Dinner. -7 30 p.m. Come enjoy a demo and dinner with the chef at Seasons 5 . Bring a friend and e perience a late summer menu inspired by locally grown labama produce. lease call 40 - 00 for reservations. Childcare available with advanced specified reservations. Oct. 12: Comfort Foods Made Healthy. 11 a.m. to noon. Comfort foods don t have to go to your waistline. oin chef and registered dietitian essica vey and enjoy new healthy spins on cold weather meals for a warm heart. 1 per person. o register, call 40 - 550.

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Chelsea Library Events Wednesdays: The Tot Spot. 10:30 a.m. A 30-minute story time for Preschoolers. We read, sing, dance and sometimes craft. Fridays: BYOC - Bring your own

crochet (craft). 10 a.m. Audio/Reading room. Sept. 9: Lego Club. 9:30 a.m. For ages 5 and up.

Area Events Sept. 1-2: Anthony Hamilton. 7:30 p.m. Alabama Theatre. With special guest Avery Sunshine. Visit Sept. 1: UAB House Party with Sam Hunt. 7 p.m. Uptown Entertainment District. Free concert to celebrate the return of UAB football. Sold out. Visit Sept. 2: Southeastern Outings River Float, Picnic, Swim. 9 a.m. Locust Fork in Blount County. Visit Sept. 2: UAB football vs. Alabama A&M. 2 p.m. Regions Field. Visit Sept. 4: 26th Annual Labor Day Celebration and Moon Pie Eatin’ Contest. 9 a.m. Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park. Admission $3-$5. Visit Sept. 7: Birmingham Art Crawl. 5-9 p.m. 113 22nd St. N. Meet local artists and performers and buy their work. Visit Sept. 7: Lady Antebellum. 7:30 p.m. Oak Mountain Amphitheatre. With special guests Kelsea Ballerini and Brett Young. Tickets $24-$180. Visit Sept. 8-9: Birmingham Artwalk. 5 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. Saturday. Birmingham Historic Loft District. Free. Visit Sept. 8-10: Dolores Hydock: The Lady with All the Answers - The Ann Landers Story. 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2:30 p.m. Sunday. RMTC Cabaret Theatre. Tickets start at $15. Visit Sept. 9: Southeastern Outings Potluck Picnic Lunch. 11:30 a.m. Oak Mountain State ar , loser fishing la e. Followed by afternoon ayak, canoe paddle or dayhike. Visit Sept. 9: Birmingham Southern football vs. Huntingdon. 6 p.m. Krulak Stadium. $10. Kids 18 and under are free. Visit bscsports. net. Sept. 9: Bill Burr. 8 p.m. Alabama Theatre. Comedian performance. $33-$43. Visit billburr. com.

Railroad Park. Featuring food trucks, musical acts and more. Visit Sept. 17: Mary J. Blige: Strength of a Woman Tour. 8 p.m. Legacy Arena at the BJCC. $61.50-$126.50. Visit Sept. 21-23: Greek Festival. 10:30 a.m. Holy Trinity-Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Cathedral. Featuring Greek food, music, dancing and more. Free admission, food and drinks priced separately. Visit Sept. 22-24: Homestead Hollow Arts & Crafts Festival. 9 a.m. Homestead Hollow, Springville. Visit Sept. 22-24: Disney on Ice: Follow Your Heart. Legacy Arena at the BJCC. 10:30 a.m. and 7 p.m. Friday; 10:30 a.m., 2:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Saturday; 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. Sunday. Tickets start at $15. Visit Sept. 22: Black Jacket Symphony Presents performs The Beatles “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.” 8 p.m. BJCC Concert Hall. Tickets $29-$80. Visit Sept. 23: Southeastern Outings Kayak/Canoe Trip. allapoosa River, eflin. Depart 9 a.m. from Leeds Highway 78 gravel parking lot. Visit Sept. 23: Oktoberfest Birmingham. 1 p.m. Caldwell Park. Tickets $10 early bird general admission, $45 VIP. Visit birminghamoktoberfest. com. Sept. 23: Miles football vs. Tuskegee University. 5 p.m. Miles College. Visit miles Sept. 24: Southeastern Outings Dayhike. 2 p.m. Black Creek Trail, Fultondale. Visit Sept. 24: Breakin’ Bread. 1 p.m. Sloss Furances. Food, wine and beer festival with musical entertainment and cooking demonstrations. $35 general admission, $99 VIP. Visit birmingham

Sept. 11: BAO Bingo. 7 p.m. Birmingham AIDS Outreach. $15-$25. Visit birminghamaids

Sept. 24: Heart of Alabama Alzheimer’s Association Walk to End Alzheimers. 1:30 p.m. Railroad Park. Two-mile walk begins at 3:15 p.m. Visit

Sept. 14-16: St. George Middle Eastern Food Festival. 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. St. George Melkite Greek Catholic Church. Visit

Sept. 24: 26th Annual Magic City AIDS Walk & 5K Run. 4:30 p.m. Railroad Park. Family friendly event featuring walk, music and more. Visit

Sept. 15-17: MotoAmerica Championship of Alabama. Barber Motorsports Park. 5 p.m. Friday, 8 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. Tickets $10-$60. Visit

Sept. 25: Young the Giant. 8 p.m. BJCC Concert Hall. With special guests Cold War Kids and Joywave. $37. Visit

Sept. 15: Sheila E. 8 p.m. Alys Stephens Center. Tickets $39-$59. Visit

Sept. 28: Joey Alexander. 7 p.m. Alys Stephens Center. Pianist performance focusing on The Future of Jazz. $40. Visit

Sept. 15: Tedeschi Trucks Band. 8 p.m. Alabama Theatre. Tickets $39-$160. Visit

Sept. 28: Live at the Lyric: Ani Difranco. 8 p.m. Lyric Theatre. $32-$55. Visit

Sept. 16: Tannehill Trade Days. 9 a.m. Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park. Admission $3-$5. Visit

Sept. 30: Southeastern Outings Canoe & Kayak Trip. 9 a.m. Terrapin Creek, Piedmont. Visit Depart 9 a.m. from Applebee’s, Trussville.

Sept. 16: Southeastern Outings Easy River Float 2. 9 a.m. Locust Fork. Picnic, swim, and short dayhike. Depart from Cleveland Chevron at 9 a.m. Visit Sept. 16: Chris Stapleton All American Road Show. 7 p.m. Oak Mountain Amphitheatre. Tickets $30-$70. Visit Sept. 17: Trucks by the Tracks. 11 a.m.

Sept. 30: Irondale Whistlestop Festival. 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Historic Downtown Irondale. Featuring art and food vendors. Free admission. Visit Sept. 30-Oct. 1: Great Southern Gun & Knife Show. 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. BJCC Exhibition Halls. Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Tickets $9. Visit

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UAB WOMEN’S HEART HEALTH CLINIC The Kirklin Clinic of UAB Hospital For two years, Joy O’Neal complained to her doctor of fatigue, weight gain and difficulty breathin . estin didn t point to an ob ious cause, so her symptoms ere blamed on stress, aller ies and menopause. “I just kept pushing through, thinking, his is hat normal menopause is li e ust uit your hinin and mo e on, recalled eal, ho operates he ed arn in eeds, a therapeutic horsebac riding center for children and adults with disabilities. ery easily could ha e been dead ithin a matter of months. A routine physical for a life insurance policy re ealed an abnormal reading, which led to her diagnosis of con esti e heart failure. urther testin re ealed that no bloc a e as present, so her doctors didn t no hat to do. “But I knew what to do, and that was to et to as soon as could, said eal, hose condition has impro ed reatly since recei in care at edicine s omen s eart ealth linic. omen ha e uni ue ris factors and symptoms and may benefit from cardiac care designed to address their particular needs, says Salpy ambou ian, . ., director of the omen s eart ealth linic. he clinic is staffed by an experienced team of renowned UAB Medicine cardiac experts, including hypertension specialist Suzanne Oparil, . ., inter entional cardiolo ist ri itta rott, . ., and heart failure specialist ndranee a apreyar, . . he clinic en oys full access to Cardiology’s wide range of diagnostic and therapeutic ser ices. eart disease is the o. cause of death among women in the United States. r. ambou ian says eepin close tabs on heart health is particularly important for omen in midlife, because

800-UAB-8816 / 800-822-8816


their risks of heart disease and heart attack jump dramatically upon reaching menopause. ne in ei ht omen bet een the a es of 45 and 64 has some form of heart disease, and this increases to one in four omen o er the a e of 65. espite the fact that there is plenty of public information about heart disease, many omen are not recei in the message that heart disease is still the top cause of death in the nited States, r. ambou ian says. lot of omen put off getting the kind of medical care they need. also belie e that there is still a lack of understanding in the medical community of how heart disease can affect omen. hate er the reason,

delays in dia nosis i e the disease time to ad ance. he ood ne s is that percent of heart disease and stro e may be pre ented throu h lifestyle chan es, education, and proper medical care. So in the interest of spreadin the ord about omen s heart health, r. ambou ian answered a few key questions on the sub ect Q: What are the biggest risk factors for heart disease? A: he bi est ris factors are abnormal cholesterol le els especially hi h cholesterol and smo in , along with other medical conditions and lifestyle choices such as diabetes, obesity, poor diet, physical inacti ity,

e cessi e alcohol use and a family history of cardio ascular disease. Q: What are some of the symptoms of heart failure in women? A: Women typically experience different symptoms than men do durin heart attac s. ommon symptoms include sweating, pressure, lightheadedness, nausea, indigestion and pain in the a , nec or upper bac . hese symptoms may be brushed off as the u, stress or menopause, but hen it comes to heart disease, there is no reason to be passi e. Q: What can I do to reduce my risk for heart disease? A: omen can si nificantly reduce their ris by eatin a heart-healthy diet that is low in saturated fat, sugar and salt not smo in achie in and maintainin a healthy ei ht stayin physically acti e and limitin your alcohol consumption. t s also important to note that psychological stress can contribute to a hi her ris for heart disease, so it’s important to seek help for any mental health issues you may ha e. Q: If I have a family history of heart disease, what age should I begin getting screened? A: here are no clear-cut uidelines for screenin a person based strictly on family history. o e er, you should ha e an on oin dialo ue ith your doctor about reducin your ris and screening for symptoms and risk factors especially if your family members de eloped heart disease at a youn a e (age 55 or earlier for men, and age 65 or earlier for omen . he omen s eart ealth linic accepts referrals from the Birmingham metro area and from outside irmin ham if ser ices are not a ailable in your area.

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THERAPYSOUTH 205 Country Club Park, Crestline 2823 Greystone Commercial Blvd., Greystone Q: What do physical therapists do and how can they help with an injury? Physical Therapists are experts at treating movement disorders, including problems with your muscles, bones, joints, ligaments and/or tendons. After a thorough evaluation, your therapist will decide which exercises and hands-on techniques are needed to maximize your ability to function normally. Q: What are some common misconceptions about physical therapy? Many patients think they can only access their physical therapist by referral from a physician. Based on a state law passed in 2012, patients no longer need a referral to see their physical therapist. Call us for an appointment today to discuss your problem. If you do see a physician first, as them if physical therapy would help your condition. Many times, physical therapy can help you avoid having to take medications that may cause unwanted side effects. Early intervention may also save money and time in the long run. Many patients think that therapy only consists of exercises that are difficult and painful. Specific e ercises that address your individual needs are important to your recovery, but good therapy also consists of handson techniques including manipulation, mobilization, myofascial release, massage, manual stretching, dry needling, instrument assisted soft tissue massage, therapeutic taping and other skilled techniques. Throughout the course of your care, we will advance your exercises appropriately as your pain levels allow. We also use modalities such as heat, ice, electrical stimulation, spinal decompression/traction, ultrasound and iontophoresis. Q: How successful is physical therapy in pain management? Most of our patients come to us with pain. Unfortunately, many of the

dysfunctions we treat start long before the pain shows up. You can even have pain in an area that is removed from the dysfunction (called referred pain). We are experts in helping you manage and overcome pain so you can return to your normal activities. In some cases, pain is a sign of injury or a normal part of the healing process. Following your evaluation, your therapist will help explain your pain and show you ways to minimize or eliminate it. Q: Can physical therapy eliminate the need for surgery? In some instances, physical therapy can prevent surgery. For example, if a patient has a shoulder that subluxes or has too much movement in the joint, therapy can help by strengthening the rotator cuff and other surrounding muscles to tighten the shoulder joint, preventing the excessive movement. In many cases, therapy prior to surgery or “pre-hab” is also helpful. This allows time for your body to prepare for the surgery and usually results in better outcomes following surgery. Q: What are some of the main reasons people need physical therapy? A: ► Back pain/bulging discs ► Arthritis ► Balance problems and/or falls ► Tendonitis ► Sports in uries ► Headaches ► Plantar fasciitis ► Muscle strains/ligament sprains ► Bursitis ► Car accidents ► Post-surgical rehab ► Work-related injuries ► Work-place injury prevention and testing ► Ergonomic assessment ► Education and knowledge about body structure and performance ► Injury prevention ► Dizziness



► Proper exercises and technique ► Pelvic pain ► Breast cancer rehab ► TMJ/TMD ► Sciatica ► Parkinson’s Q: What sets TherapySouth apart from other physical therapy clinics? A: herapySouth was founded on a set of core values that guide the way we do business: faith, family, integrity, service, compassion, fitness, perseverance and giving. Our therapists strive to provide a warm, friendly and professional environment to facilitate your recovery. And our 24 convenient clinic locations with more than 60 physical therapists provide you with hands on care, close to home and work! Q: How much training do physical therapists go through? A: Following undergraduate studies, therapists complete three additional years of training to achieve their doctorate degree in physical therapy. Many therapists also complete postgraduate specialization training in manual therapy, functional dry needling and ergonomics, to name a few. Q: Who should I go see when I have an injury or pain? A: Your physical therapist is a great resource to help with any of your musculoskeletal needs. If you have been experiencing pain for more than two weeks, you should seek help. Frequently, the course of treatment is much quicker when the problem is addressed early on.

If the condition is outside of our scope of practice, we will help guide you to the appropriate medical professional. Q: Can physical therapy help with chronic pain or old injuries? A: Absolutely! Ideally, patients will seek therapy early on, but should you be dealing with a chronic condition that has been bothering you for months or years, we can still help. Q: Once I start physical therapy, how long will I need to attend? A: Your physical therapist will discuss this with you following your evaluation on your first isit. n most cases, patients attend therapy 2-3 times per week, but the frequency and length of care depend on the patient s specific problem and needs. Your therapist will set reasonable goals for you to achieve prior to discharge.

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WEIGH TO WELLNESS 4704 Cahaba River Road Q: What is Weigh to Wellness? A: A medically supervised weight loss clinic offering a customized approach with various options including nutritional guidance, protein supplements/meal replacements, prescription medications and injections among many other tools. Our program is uniquely individualized based on your health characteristics, lifestyle and weight loss goals. Whether a patient is looking to lose 10 pounds or 100 pounds, we have a plan for you! Q: Who is on the Weigh to Wellness staff? A: Owner Leslie Ellison has acquired a wealth of knowledge with over 21 years of experience in the industry. Dr. Timothy H. Real is the medical director and is board certified by the American Board of Obesity Medicine. We also have fulltime Registered Dietitians and Nutritionists. Our staff is able to recognize many psychological and genetic factors that cause obesity and design processes specific to each of our patients for the best results. Q: What results do patients typically have? A: Patients typically lose an average of 2-5 pounds weekly. It is inspiring to see how excited our patients get when they see great results. It keeps them motivated and focused! Since opening in



June of 2014 we have celebrated over 15,000 pounds lost! Q: How much does the program cost? A: A medical evaluation which

includes an EKG, lab tests, body composition analysis and a physical with Dr. Real is required to start any program — the fee for the medical evaluation is $130. Programs can range from $13-$100 weekly. Costs vary depending on if the patient chooses to use any meal replacements, protein snacks, prescription medication (if applicable) or injections that may enhance weight loss. Everything is a la carte! There are NO CONTRACTS and NO SIGN UP FEES. Q: Does the program have one-on-one counseling that will help develop healthier habits? A: Yes. Patients are typically seen on a weekly or biweekly basis for one-on-one counseling and beha ior modification. Accountability and structure is key to every patient’s success. Q: Do I have to follow a specific meal plan or keep a food diary? A: There are many options offered, but the patient picks and chooses the aspects of the pro ram that best fits their lifestyle. enefits to eepin a food diary are detecting food intolerance, controlling portion sizes, keeping you mindful of nutrition and often identifying triggers to unhealthy eating. Patients who keep a food journal typically lose twice the amount of weight of those that don’t. Q: Do I have to buy special meals or supplements? A: No, but Weigh to Wellness does offer convenient meal

replacements and protein snacks. Most patients love these healthy options because they are great for grab and go! Q: Does the program provide ways to deal with such issues as social or holiday eating, changes to work schedules, lack of motivation, and injury or illness? A: Yes. There is no perfect time to diet. Our experienced staff is used to working around any of these issues. We encourage each of our patients to think of it as a lifestyle change, not necessarily a diet! Q: Will Dr. Real work with my health care provider if needed (for example, if I lose weight and my blood pressure medications need to be adjusted)? A: Absolutely. We are happy to follow up with your primary care doctor or specialist at any time with your consent. Q: Does the program include a plan to help me keep the weight off once I’ve lost weight? A: “I can’t think of one thing I love that I don’t have to maintain — the oil in my car, the grass on my lawn, the paint on my home,” Ellison said. Yes, we offer a FREE lifetime maintenance program and it is the most important part of the program. Patients can continue to come weekly, biweekly or monthly for maintenance and there is no charge!


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SOUTHERN PAIN SPECIALISTS 7191 Cahaba Valley Road Q: What are the first steps in treating pain A: People often describe pain based on its location, such as "neck pain" or "back pain." The first and most important step to treat their pain is to accurately diagnose the source of the pain. After the cause of the pain has been identified, e can de elop a treatment plan. he underlyin cause in many cases is in ammation. he spine is a comple structure runnin from the base of the s ull to the sacrum in the pel is. he source of the pain can frequently be identified by a real-time uoroscopic -ray e amination here you can tell the doctor e actly here the pain is. urther in office dia nostic tools include ultrasound, discography and bone densitometry. Onsite MRI and CT scanning is a ailable. ur board-certified interventional pain and anesthesiology physicians use our state-of-the-art e uipment to provide top quality care. Q: What sets outhern ain pecialists apart from other facilities A: Southern Pain Specialists ill be celebratin our 2 th anni ersary this o ember 1st. We are proud to have had the opportunity to serve the people of labama ho suffer from acute and chronic pain conditions. Our staff strives to provide

the best care possible in a friendly compassionate atmosphere. t is our oal to utili e state-of-the-art technology in the diagnosis and treatment of pain and related disorders. Many people are surprised hen they see our inoffice capability to perform interventions they thought could only be provided in a hospital facility. An added


bonus is that the co-pay fee for a physician s office is substantially less than the same treatment performed in a hospital outpatient department or ambulatory sur ery center. Q: What are some new pain treatment options A: Stem cell therapy is a ne and promisin treatment option to help the body regenerate dama ed tissues in oints, tendons and li aments. lasma

and stem cells can be har ested from your o n body or umbilical cord blood. Q: hingles can e a significant cause of acute and chronic pain. What treatments are availa le A: Shingles is caused by a re-acti ation of the chic en po irus in the spinal and peripheral nerves. Initial oral anti iral medicine is used to stop the irus from replicatin .

The acute and chronic pain components can be treated ith epidural steroid in ections. he earlier the in ections the better the outcomes. Q: steoporosis is prevalent in the older population. ow can tell if am at risk, and how can it e prevented A: Osteoporosis is a silent enemy that, left undetected, may only be disco ered after a hip, spine or rist fracture has occurred. he only ay to tell if you have osteoporosis is to have your bone density measured. oss of calcium in your bones reduces the density and leads to ea ness and increased fracture risk. lthou h post-menopausal omen o er 5 ha e lon been recognized as being at risk of osteoporosis men o er the a e of , especially ith ris factors such as smo in , should be monitored as ell. outine e aluation e ery t o years is recommended. he mainstay of pre ention and treatment is ood dietary itamin and calcium. dditional treatment may include oral medications or annual intra enous eclast administration. For those unfortunate enough to develop a vertebral compression fracture, e can dia nose and treat, ith kyphoplasty, all at Southern Pain Specialists.

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REGENPATH 1849 Data Drive, Suite 1, Hoover Q: What is regenerative medicine? A: Millions of people suffer every day with diseases that cause debilitating pain that steals away their ability to enjoy life. Many of these diseases have traditionally been difficult to treat ith con entional medicine, leaving patients frustrated and without hope. Regenerative medicine offers amazing promise and hope for millions of people suffering from these diseases. It is a method of using our body’s own natural healing properties to repair damage to our cells, tissues and organs all without the use of drugs. Q: What types of problems do you treat? A: We treat all types of neuropathy and chronic joint pain; everything from diabetic neuropathy and chemotherapyinduced neuropathy to idiopathic (or unknown origin) neuropathy. We have been successfully treating all these conditions over the last two years, and now, with the addition of stem cells and our unique stem cell signaling capabilities, we are seeing this success in a shorter amount of time. Q: What exactly is neuropathy? A: Neuropathy is a disorder that can be caused by many different disease processes. Its symptoms can be a combination of pain, burning, tingling, pins and needles and numbness. We most often see this nerve damage in the feet, legs and hands, but it can attack other parts of the body. The results of this debilitating disease can be balance issues, which lead to falls and sleep difficulties. Se ere cases can even lead to loss of the limb. It winds up affecting the patient’s personality, mood and overall quality of life.

Q: What are stem cells and how do they work? A: Stem cells are uni ue cells in our bodies that have the ability to change into any healthy cell in our body. Meaning, they can change into skin, nerve, bone, blood, cartilage and muscle cells, just to name a few. Stem cells ha e the ability to mi rate to and integrate into the target tissue either in the presence or absence of damage. Once stem cells are delivered to a site of injury, they go to the chemical distress signals and dock onto adjacent


cells to commence performing their job of repair. Q: Where do these stem cells come from? A: Stem cells may be isolated from several sources, but there are drawbacks to obtaining and using them for therapy, such as surgical procedures for adult tissue and ethical concern in using fetal tissue. At RegenPath, we use donated umbilical cord stem cells. Umbilical cord blood derived from live, healthy baby births. The parents donate the cord to

the tissue bank, and thousands of people benefit from hat ould be other ise discarded tissue. These are the most effective cells as well as the most ethical, safest, and least invasive way of collecting. Q: How soon do patients show results after treatment with stem cells? A: We have had reports of improvement within one to four days of injections. The cells are able to divide and replicate so there is continued improvement for up to a year.


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930-0930 or 969-8100 Q: Why did you choose to become an ophthalmologist? A: I have always enjoyed helping others. As a young girl I was enthralled by my father’s ability through cataract surgery to regain the sight of his patients. I also want to help people improve their quality of life by improving their vision. It is a great feeling when a patient returns to the office one day after cataract surgery and they are so excited to see clearly again. Helping people is why I went into medicine. Q: What do you plan to offer in your new position? A: My medical training in ophthalmology focused on the surgical and laser correction of vision in patients who suffer from cataracts and glaucoma. At Alabama Eye & Cataract Center, P.C., I see patients for evaluation and management of acute and chronic eye diseases including cataracts. Cataract surgery has become another form of refractive surgery. Like LASIK, cataract surgery allows patients to see clearly at all distances without the need for glasses. Advanced premium lens implant designs allow patients to regain sight over a range of different focal points to see near, computer length, arm’s length and distance without the need for glasses. Astigmatism correction is also possible with single and multifocal lens implants. We also manage and treat dry eye conditions with a wide array of the most advanced treatment options including LipiFlow. To schedule an appointment, please call 205-930-0930. Q: Is LASIK the only option for Laser Vision Correction? A: Michelson Laser Vision Inc. and its predecessor have been performing vision correction surgery by laser since 1991. We have always been on the forefront of the newest technology. Now refractive surgery is not just LASIK. We focus on providing a variety of surgical treatments — all with the most advanced stateof-the-art technology — to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism. Blade-free LASIK and PRK are the most common procedures we perform, but we also offer surgical lens implants for the correction of severely nearsighted people who may not qualify for LASIK or PRK. Each patient receives extensive screening tests with the most advanced diagnostic equipment to determine a customized treatment plan.

Q: Can you tell us more about advanced premium lens implants? A: During cataract surgery, the patient’s cloudy natural lens is removed, and a new lens implant is inserted into the eye. A standard intraocular lens allows a patient to focus at one point and glasses may be necessary for a full range of vision. Advanced premium lens implants are designed to correct presbyopia and distance vision so that the patient can see near and far without glasses. What is exciting about these advanced premium lenses is that they also can be used in patients who don’t have cataracts but have refractive errors preventing them from seeing near and far without glasses. After a clear lens extraction with a premium lens implant, patients should be able to see at all ranges of distance without glasses. Special advanced testing is required to determine if a premium lens is suitable to achieve an optimal outcome because some patients may not be candidates for these lenses. Anyone interested in eliminating or reducing their need for glasses can get more information by visiting our website, michelson, visiting us on Facebook or calling 205-969-8100.

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INVERNESS DERMATOLOGY & LASER 250 Inverness Center Drive Elizabeth S. Jacobson, MD

Maria (Shellie) Marks, MD

Q: What is CoolSculpting®? A: CoolSculpting is a non-invasive fat reduction treatment. It uses cooling technology to safely and effectively freeze fat cells without surgery, needles, knives or anesthesia. Q: Inverness Dermatology is one of the most popular CoolSculpting centers in Alabama, Mississippi and the Florida panhandle. To what do you attribute your success? A: We have a team of CoolSculpting specialists that are committed to findin the best treatment regimen for our patients. We create the perfect plan for each individual based on their concerns and desired outcome. ur office is oolSculptin certified and committed to providing the newest generation of technology with shorter treatment times and greater comfort. Q: Who is the best candidate for CoolSculpting? A: Patients with areas of “pinchable” fat are the best candidates for CoolSculpting. The treatment is ideal for patients who want to precisely target and eliminate stubborn fat that resists diet and exercise. It is certainly not a weight loss plan but really allows you to sculpt your body. Q: What are some of the most common misconceptions people have about CoolSculpting? A: Patients sometimes expect CoolSculpting to eliminate every bit of their fat. In reality, the procedure yields an average fat reduction of up to 20 percent. Patients can, however, have multiple treatments to an area for additional fat loss.

205-995-5575 Kathleen Beckum, MD Patricia O’Connor, MD Mary Beth Templin, PA-C

Meredith Gore, PA-C


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HEALTHY SMILES 100 Heatherbrooke Drive, Suite A Q: What services does your practice offer? A: We are a general and family dental practice, offering most dental services. Some of the things we offer in addition to traditional dental treatment include 3-D digital X-rays; same-day porcelain crowns; smile makeovers; therapy for snoring and sleep apnea; deep bleaching; and Clear Correct orthodontic aligners. Q: Your practice treats people with sleep apnea. Can you tell us about the services you offer for sleep apnea? A: We work together with the patient’s physician or with a home sleep test physician to make sure untested patients receive the proper sleep apnea medical testing and diagnosis. Once the physician has determined the severity of the patient’s sleep apnea, and we deem that they are a candidate, e can fit them for a custom dental appliance at the proper settings to help their nighttime breathing most effectively. Even if a patient has been told in the past that their only option is to wear a CPAP machine at night, there is now an advanced test that can determine if an oral sleep appliance will work for them. We are fortunate to have this advanced testing available



locally in Birmingham. Our goal in treating our patients with sleep apnea is to help minimize their snoring, maximize their breathing for optimal health and help them in getting a restful night’s sleep. Q: Tell us about “same-day crowns and the enefits of them? A: Our CEREC same-day crown machine allows us to

make customized porcelain crowns, partial crowns and veneers while the patient rests in our office. his benefits our patients by allowing them to have only one visit instead of two, which saves them time. It also allows them to avoid wearing a temporary crown, which can sometimes come off ... usually on a Saturday night while at dinner

with friends! Other advantages are that we can make any needed cosmetic or fit chan es ithout ha in to send the crown back to a laboratory, and we can seal the tooth more quickly to diminish sensitivity. Our patients are usually amazed that they get to watch their new porcelain tooth being designed on the computer

screen, and that they get to leave with it after only about an hour and a half visit. Q: Are there options available for people who don’t have dental insurance? A: Yes! Some people share the misconception that they can’t come in for dental care without insurance. This is not true, and we are happy to treat patients with or without dental benefits. hey ill recei e the same level of excellent customer service, and our team will help them with any needed financial arran ements. We even have a dental savings plan to help those patients without insurance. Regular dental maintenance is so important to overall health, and it is our passion to help our patients get the care they need. Q: What is your advice for helping patients improve their dental health? A: Use an electric toothbrush t ice a day oss or use a ater- osser e ery ni ht and regularly visit your dentist to catch any potential problems while they are small and manageable. Also, limit sugary, acidic foods and beverages in your diet. Don't be embarrassed to go to the dentist if it's been awhile since you've had dental care. We are here to help, not to judge!

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CARDIOVASCULAR ASSOCIATES 3980 Colonnade Parkway Q: Am I at risk for problems with my veins? A: Venous problems of the lower extremities are a common problem affecting millions of Americans that can lead to chronic pain, swelling and even life threatening infections. Risk factors that predispose patients for venous problems include family history, previous blood clots of the lower extremities, female gender, occupations (standing and sitting), pregnancy, obesity, hypertension and trauma to the lower legs. It is estimated that 5 percent of all Americans have some form of venous insufficiency of the le s, hich is the most common manifestation of vein abnormalities of the lower extremity. Q: What can I do to prevent problems with the veins in my legs? A: Patients with symptomatic venous problems of the lower extremities suffer from chronic pain, swelling, dilated varicose veins, neuropathy, skin ulcerations, bleeding, clotting and life-threatening infections. The majority of venous ulcerations of the lower extremity are caused by dilated re u in eins in susceptible individuals. Patients with risk factors and signs and symptoms of enous insufficiency should wear compression stockings as much as they can, avoid prolonged standing or sitting and walk at regular intervals. Q: What are the options for treatment of venous insufficienc of the lower extremities?

A: The options for treatment of si nificant enous problems of the lower extremities include compression therapy, exercise therapy, minimally invasive ablative therapy and rarely surgery. The results of minimally invasive ablative procedures are excellent, with minimal discomfort and rapid recovery. These procedures are performed by physicians at Cardiovascular Associates. Q: Do I need treatment for varicose veins? Will they get worse if not treated? A: If untreated, venous problems of the legs can lead to chronic non-healing wounds of the lower extremity. Varicose veins are a sign of enous insufficiency, hich can lead to chronic pain and ulceration. These problems can be severely debilitating and may worsen if not treated properly. If a patient has varicose veins, this could be a sign of enous insufficiency. arly dia nosis and treatment can prevent life long suffering and even death. Q: Do I need a specialist for my treatment? What kind of specialist? A: A specialist trained in the treatment of venous disease of the lower extremity can provide symptomatic relief and life-saving procedures for patients who suffer from chronic venous problems of the lower extremity. The latest treatments and techniques are provided by vascular specialists in medical groups such as Cardiovascular Associates.



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BIRMINGHAM ID & INFUSION 4704 Cahaba River Road, Suite 101-D Q: What can tell us about Birmingham ID & Infusion? A: Birmingham ID & Infusion is an infectious diseases practice and outpatient IV infusion center located in Cahaba Heights. Our three physicians, Dr. William Lapidus, Dr. Eima Zaidi and Dr. Anurag Gandhi see patients at Brookwood Baptist Medical Center, Grandview Medical Center, Select Specialty Hospital and HealthSouth Lakeshore Rehabilitation Hospital in addition to seeing patients in our clinic. Our goal is to provide comprehensive care in an outpatient setting for patients who require IV antibiotics and other IV therapies. Q: How long have you been open? A: Our physicians have been in practice for many years and opened our practice and infusion center on Feb. 8, 2016. Q: What distinguishes us from other specialists? A: We are the only practice in Birmingham that offers IV antibiotic infusions on an outpatient basis. There are only two other IV antibiotic infusion centers in the state of Alabama. Our physicians have extensive training in all kinds of infections, including those caused by bacteria, viruses and fungi. Along with this knowledge comes a particular insight into



the use of antibiotics and their potential adverse effects. Q: How does everyone on staff contribute to patient care? A: Each team member plays a part in providing patient care, from our account service

representative at the front desk to our infusion nurses in the infusion center. We work together to ensure patient care is seamless and patients can transition quickly from the hospital to our practice.

Q: Tell us more about your on-site infusion center? A: Our infusion center offers patients the opportunity to receive IV antibiotic therapy without going to the hospital or self-administering at home. Our center is staffed by

experienced infusion nurses and nurse practitioners. We are the only center open seven days a week to provide continuous care for patients in a comfortable environment. We provide daily IV antibiotic therapy and other select infusion services as requested. We are excited to announce that we will be providing infusion services for patients receiving biologics, such as Entyvio and Remicade. Q: How do you create a comfortable environment for your patients? A: Creating a relaxing, inviting environment is our priority. To that end, we made our office and infusion center as close to home as possible, with recliners, artwork on the walls, TVs, books, and complimentary blankets and mugs, as well as providing drinks or snacks. Every patient is on their own journey back to health, but the one thing they don’t have to do when they are here is worry. We take the worry out of receiving infusion therapy. Q: What do the doctors enjoy about what they do? A: Our doctors love practicing in infectious diseases and are passionate about patient care. They work hard to ensure every patient’s medical needs are met and consistently go above and beyond expectations to care for our patients.

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ALABAMA ORGAN CENTER 502 20th St. S. Q: What is the Alabama Organ Center? A: The Alabama Organ Center is the federally designated, nonprofit or an procurement organization for the state of labama. s such, e are the lin bet een the enerous people ho ish to donate and the thousands of people in need of transplants. Q: What can be donated? A: Most people are familiar ith or an transplants heart, lun s, pancreas, li er, idneys and intestines. One organ donor can sa e ei ht li es. eople are not as a are of the benefits of tissue donation bone, tendons, li aments, heart al es, blood essels and s in. hese tissues are used e ery day in sur eries that impro e the mobility and uality of life of the recipients of the ifts. ne person ho donates tissues can help up to 75 people. It is an amazing gift! Q: How do people register to donate? A: he most common ay people register to donate in Alabama is at the Department of otor ehicles hen they et their license. he cler ill as , re you an or an donor f you say, es, you ill be added to the re istry and ha e a heart added to your license. his simple uestion is ery po erful eople may also re ister online at AlabamaOrganCenter.




or or by completin a form. t is a process that ta es ust a

fe minutes. en if someone has re istered to donate, e encoura e them to share their decision ith their family so they are a are of your choice to help others. Q: What is the most common myth? A: eople are concerned that re isterin to be a donor ill ne ati ely impact their medical care if they are in an accident. he first priority is al ays to sa e the life of the indi idual. onation only becomes an option hen those efforts are unsuccessful. Q: How does donation positively impact the families who donate? A: In Alabama, there are nearly 3, indi iduals a aitin organ donations, and the list eeps ro in . ationally, there are more than 117,000 men, omen and children aitin for a transplant. hile thousands of recipients are blessed ith life-sa in and life-enhancin or ans or tissues e ery year, on a era e 2 people die e ery day hile aitin for a transplant. onation not only positi ely impacts the li es of the people ho recei e the ifts, but it can also be a positi e e perience for the donor family ho has lost so much. obe ameron as ust 6 years old hen he died after a tra ic accident. obe s parents chose to donate his or ans so that others could li e. ecause of obe, there are three children

ho ill be able to ro up and ha e beautiful life e periences. here s a mother ho ill still be there for her son and future randchildren. nd there is a dau hter niece hose time here has been e tended because of Kobe. e had no idea the e tent of the impact of donatin obe s or ans ould ha e on us, said obe s mom, ourtney ameron. t the time that e made the decision to donate, e ere desperate to brin something good from this tra edy. onation has i en us hope that our s eet little boy is continuin to li e on in the li es of others and has helped us in our rief. Q: Ann, could you tell me a out the significance of the quilt behind you in your photo? A: I am standing in front of one of our onderful onor amily uilts. e ha e uilts that are made up of more than 4 uilt s uares. he uilt s uares are lo in ly created by donor family members and are a isual representation of our enerous donors. he s uares are often made out of a fa orite piece of clothin and ha e pictures that represent hat as important to the donor. They are a beautiful tribute to our donors and the ifts they a e.

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AMERICAN FAMILY CARE Multiple locations across the metro Birmingham area Q: American Family Care celebrated its 35th anniversary this year. To what do you contribute this growth and success? A: We would not be where we are today without everyone in the AFC family believing in our vision of providing the best healthcare possible. We’ve had the privilege of helping literally millions of people live happier, healthier lives. Surely, the satisfaction of that reality is what continues to drive us all. Q: What services does your company provide? A: All AFC medical centers are designed, equipped and staffed to provide accessible primary care, urgent care and minor emergency treatment. Each clinic features a high-tech, high touch approach, including digital X-rays, onsite lab testing, state of the art diagnostics and electronic medical records. Each clinic also provides a full suite of occupational medicine and workers compensation services. These services include OSHA-mandated medical surveillance exams, D.O.T. and non-D.O.T. drugs screens, physicals and breath alcohol tests, among many other services. Q: What makes your company unique? A: If you were to look at the online reviews across all of our clinics, you ould find the average rating is very high,

403-8902 or (800) 258-7535


especially in comparison to other health care providers. Our goal is 100 percent patient satisfaction, so our doctors and staff work hard to not only provide great health care, but provide it in a caring and compassionate way. Quality of care is number one, but our unparalleled convenience also sets us apart. We have nearly 20 clinics across north-central Alabama that are open seven days a week, some of which are open until 8 p.m. High-quality care, coupled with unparalleled convenience, make us completely unique. Q: What are some goals, both present and future, for AFC?

A: Long-term, our vision is to become one of the most widely known and admired brands in health care. Currently, we are on track to grow from 200 clinics to 500 in the next four years. Of course, the only way we are going to achieve these goals is to focus on providing the best possible health care every day. Q: How do you make sure each patient receives quality care in an efficient wa A: We are always looking for ways to measure and improve the patient experience. This includes monitoring our wait times in every individual clinic throughout the day. Additionally, we continually

survey our patients about their experiences with us, which we track and report for every clinic and every physician. Q: How does AFC give back, both corporately and within the community of each location? A: We have several healthrelated causes in which we focused our efforts. The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society is one that we are particularly passionate about. We have also traditionally been a strong supporter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. However, there is a long, long list of other organizations we’ve contributed in recent years,

including United Way, Junior Achievement, Camp Smile-AMile and dozens more. While many of the causes we’ve supported are located in Alabama, we also invest thousands of dollars each year toward local schools, youth sports leagues and other great causes. It’s a privilege to be trusted by people to take care of their health. We not only honor that trust by working hard to provide them with the best care possible, we also recognize the importance of supporting the local institutions that are important to the quality of their lives.

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Q: How are you different? A: At Valleydale Animal Clinic, we strive for personalized care for each patient and client. We know our clients and their pets’ names and truly care about their wellbeing. Loving pets and people, too, is our motto. We are an American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA)-accredited hospital, meaning we completed extra certification to sho our commitment to providing the highest standard of care in our industry. There are only three other AAHA-accredited hospitals in the Birmingham area, and we are the only one in Shelby County and along the Highway 280 corridor. Q: How do you improve pets’ lives? A: Valleydale Animal Clinic improve lives through personalized care by listening intently to what our clients say and hearing their concerns. We believe in having an active doctorpatient relationship, so we can appreciate small changes in the pets in our care. Our veterinarians encourage preventative care — annual examinations, parasite screenings and prevention, vaccinations and laboratory testing. ellness blood test profiles are ey factor of our recommendations — they allow us to know details on your pet’s organs to help detect diseases earlier.

We urge spay and neuter not only for the pet’s health and behavior, but to also reduce pet overpopulation. Valleydale Animal Clinic supports Shelby Humane Society, Greater Birmingham Humane Society, Adopt a Golden Birmingham and many animal rescue organizations as well as Hand in Paw. Q: What would we like pet owners to know? A: Pets can enrich your life and add so much to your family! Being a pet owner is a great responsibility — they rely on us for their care. Before adopting or acquiring a pet, make sure you, your family and home is ready to provide a forever home that can last 20 years. Also research a veterinarian to provide you with care — they will be your partner in your pet’s health and play a key role in your relationship with your pet. Ask for recommendations from friends and family.



Q: What would you say are the main enefits of bringing your child to a pediatric dentist? A: Pediatric dentistry is the dental specialty that focuses on the oral health and unique needs of young people. Just as you choose a pediatrician to care for the unique health needs of your child, a pediatric dentist is specifically trained to serve the special dental needs of children. After completing dental school, pediatric dentists complete two to three additional years of rigorous training and education. This specialized, hands-on program of study prepares pediatric DR. dentists to meet the unique needs of young patients, including children and adolescents with special needs. Pediatric dentists focus on prevention, early detection and treatment. They keep current on the latest advances in dentistry for children. en the offices are desi ned ith children in mind. Q: At what age should children begin seeing a dentist? A: We see children as early as when the first tooth comes in. his isit is more about dental education, dietary counseling and prevention for children. The ADA and AAPD recommend that children establish a dental home by age one. Q: What are some of the most


important tips you would give parents regarding their children’s dental health? A: Some tips I would give to parents regarding their children’s health are: ► Establish a dental home for your children ► Visit your pediatric dentist at least every 6 months to have your children’s teeth checked ► Brush your children’s teeth (and teach your children to brush) twice a day ith uoridated toothpaste ► Eat healthy foods and snacks ► Protect your children’s teeth with a mouthguard if playing sports ► Floss daily


HOME CARE ASSISTANCE 5291 Valleydale Road, Suite 123


Q: Home Care Assistance’s mission statement is to change the way the world ages. What can you share with us about this and your Balanced Care Method? A: The Balanced Care Method is based on the scientifically studied lifestyle choices of the longest — and healthiest — living population on Earth. The Balanced Care Method is unique because it focuses as much on quality of life as longevity, emphasizing healthy nutrition, physical and mental exercise and a purposeful, calm lifestyle. Home Care Assistance is proud to train our caregivers in the Balanced Care Method and provide the premier in-home care solutions for older adults. Q: What does the Balanced Care Method promote? A: Smart lifestyle choices: ► Healthy nutrition: hi h-fiber, plant-based, low protein diet that emphasizes fruits, vegetables and foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids and a onoids promotes ood health. Our caregivers encourage healthy eating by preparing nutritious meals while taking into account dietary preferences and restrictions. ► Physical and mental stimulation: Active seniors are happier and healthier as they age. Our caregivers are trained to encourage regular physical activity and mental stimulation and are sensitive to any individual limitations.

These activities help to delay memory loss and muscle loss and to encourage independence. ► A sense of purpose: Seniors with a calm and purposeful lifestyle are better equipped to avoid stress, disease and symptoms of depression. Our caregivers bring meaning and purpose to seniors’ lives by engaging them in their favorite topics, hobbies and activities. One of the primary challenges of aging is a sense of isolation and withdrawal, particularly hen mobility issues or difficulty dri in creates barriers to socialization. Home Care Assistance caregivers provide companionship and a natural partner for the activities seniors enjoy, allowing them to maintain their independence and quality of life.

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GROWING UP PEDIATRICS 200 Riverhill Business Park, Suite 250 Q: How often should my baby be eating? A: If it’s possible for you to breast-feed, breast milk is the best food for babies. Expect your newborn to feed about every two hours. Feeding can last anywhere from 10 to 15 minutes on each side. The more the infant nurses from the breast, the quicker your milk will “come in” and the more milk you will be able to produce. Supplementing with formula can sometimes hinder successful breastfeeding. Q: How do I know when to start feeding my baby solid food? A: The practice of introducing solid foods and liquids other than breast milk or formula durin the first year of life has varied over time and across cultures. The American Academy of Pediatrics currently recommends that solid foods be introduced around 6 months of age. Whenever you start your child on solids, begin with foods such as mashed bananas or rice cereal. Q: My child/baby has a fever — Now what do I do? A: More than almost any other condition, fever causes parents to worry. Because many types of infection do not



tolerate elevated temperatures, fever is nature’s way of fending off disease. For this reason, it is not necessary to get your child’s fever back to normal when they are sick. The important factor with fever is identifying the underlying cause for the fever and addressing this problem properly. If you have questions about what to do when your child has a fever, you should call your pediatrician and follow his or her advice.

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ENCORE REHABILITATION 5291 Valleydale Road, Suite 113

280 Living



Q: You are known for your specialization in youth sports injuries, having taught on the subject nationally. What are the “keys” to the success of your rehabilitation programs? A: The thoroughness of our evaluation is the first step. t is important to get a very detailed history of the patient s MARC R. BERNIER, DPT, MPT, CSCS trainin re iment, because the ma ority of in uries in the youth schedulin demands, dri es a desire athlete are due to to be bac playin sooner than may be o ertrainin and not enou h reco ery. safe. e t, e ha e to screen e aluate the Q: How do you overcome this entire body for ea nesses and not ust challenge? the in ured oint, because most in uries A: he eys are educatin the player, e see are the result of biomechanical parent and coaches on the healin problems occurrin at a re ion abo e or process and the ris s for premature belo the affected area. return to play. or instance, in adolescent irls ho ersonally, ant each player to et ha e nee pain, the usual cause is bac as uic ly as possible, but also ea ness of the core and hips that lead don t ant to ris them sufferin a to increased stress in the nees hile potentially season-endin in ury for the runnin and umpin . sa e of rushin them bac a ee or Q: What are the biggest challenges t o early. you face when working with injured he other consideration is hether adolescent athletes? ha in a player play throu h an in ury A: y far, the reatest stru le is at a 5 - 5 percent le el is helpin or unrealistic time frame e pectations for hurtin the team. dditionally, if tryin returnin to play. er the course of my to impress colle e scouts at an e ent 23 year career, ha e seen si nificantly is the oal, ill playin at that reduced more pressure o er the past 5-6 le el be a detriment to your chances of years to et players bac on the field ettin considered for scholarships in t o ee s, hen e no from a So, belie e bein readily a ailable physiolo ic and healin perspecti e, it to tal to parents and coaches is an often ta es lon er than that. absolute necessity, and somethin nfortunately, the competiti eness of consider ital in my role in the process. youth sports, combined ith the intense

CHIROPRACTIC ACUPUNCTURE 2800 Greystone Commercial Blvd., Suite 2B Q: Your practice is unique in that you offer both chiropractic and acupuncture care. Could you tell us more about your practice? A: ost people do not no that chiropractic and acupuncture or synonymously. any acupuncture points run alon the spine. hen e ad ust, e stimulate DR. CHERIE those points. ue to this correlation, e recommend our patients to ha e an ad ustment first, follo ed by acupuncture. once had a professor ho said, cupuncture is the lue to an ad ustment. f a patient has a disc issue, e ill typically treat ith chiropractic and then follo ith acupuncture to help reduce s ellin and in ammation. Some patients may not et relief from ust chiropractic due to the amount of in ammation in the body. herefore, e ill sometimes s itch to acupuncture to help ith pain, in ammation, s ellin and ner e discomfort. lot of our patients do both acupuncture and chiropractic on a re ular basis and lo e the results. Q: What is the difference between acupuncture and dry needling? A: cupuncture and dry needlin are t o totally different approaches. cupuncture is dealin ith different meridian ener y points to balance the body and help brin ener y to or a ay from the biolo ical systems of the body. here are 2 main meridians in the body. f there are any disruptions in


JOHNSON ener y o , it can alter the entire system. ry needlin is done by most physical therapists and is focused more on loosenin bound or ti ht muscle tissue. roper dry needlin re uires the therapist to place a needle in the muscle tissue that is ti ht and then mo e the needle up and do n to loosen this ti ht tissue. Q: A big component of your practice involves nutritional counseling and supplements. Could you tell us why you feel it is so important? A: hen studied acupuncture, one of the first thin s e ere tau ht is to treat the hole body, and that includes nutritionally. f someone has an issue ith eyes, they ere to eat fish eyeballs. o one in this day and a e ould eat fish eyeballs, but e do no the necessary supplements to support this system. t speeds up the healin and repair time hen e combine nutrition ith acupuncture. hiropractic care addresses a similar situation. any musculos eletal issues can be resol ed ith simple supplementation and chan e in diet.


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280 MEDICAL SUPPLY 11600 County Road 280, Chelsea

ALABAMA PODIATRY - UPPERLINE HEALTH 211 First St. S., Suite A, Alabaster Q: What is Alabama Podiatry? A: We are a network of top podiatry practices partnering with health plans and community providers to deliver comprehensive foot care in innovative new ways. Through a skilled and compassionate team, we provide the highest quality foot care to patients in need. Q: How many locations do you have? A: e ha e offices in oo er ith r. ndre hia and r. onald ayes r. labaster ith r. risten urray and enterpoint ith r. alerie as er ille. e also ha e an office in obile ith r. ichael aye. Q: When should a patient consider visiting one of your locations? A: All too often, people resign themselves to living with painful foot problems that slow their mobility and interfere with work and recreation. It’s important to understand that foot pain isn’t normal. You’ll feel the difference when a foot


care specialist treats your feet. Q: Why is it important for patients with diabetes to visit you? A: Once diagnosed, diabetes is present for life. ecause diabetes is a systemic disease affecting many of the body’s organs, ideal management requires a team approach, involving the podiatrist as well as the family physician, and other medical specialists. 25% of diabetics will develop a foot ulcer, and podiatric physicians play an important role in preventing these complications. Q: Many amputations for patients with diabetes could have been prevented. What can patients do to avoid this? A: i h-ris patients should loo for peripheral neuropathy, vascular insufficiency, foot deformities such as hammer toes, stiff joints, calluses on the soles of the feet, and a history of open sores on the feet. Overall, the key to amputation prevention is early recognition, regular foot screening, and appropriate podiatric care.

Q: What makes your medical supply business stand out from others? A: ecause am the owner and the operator, I can deal with each individual person to provide the individual care they deserve. I try to stock medical supply items and equipment that GEORGIA LAY people tend to need on a daily basis or in an emergency that they can t find it anywhere else. For instance, I don’t know of anywhere around here where a person can walk in and buy catheters or ostomy supplies, with a prescription of course. I have also been known to meet people at my store after closing hours and on the weekends for emergency supplies that they needed. You don’t see that in many places, especially in this industry. Q: What has been your biggest disappointment? A: Not being able to help everyone. The main reason I got into this business was to be able to help people, and because of the e er-chan in regulations and competitive bidding, I can’t always do that. Q: With the shrinking reimbursement rates from payers and competitive bidding, how have you survived? A: It hasn’t been easy! I have had to really tighten my belt and streamline operations. I moved my store to this


location on ld i h ay 2 almost four years ago. It has been fun seeing this old lumber company transform into a medical supply store. There are still a lot of items that I can bill to edicare. focus on those items, such as catheters, bracing and diabetic infusion supplies, and I do more cash sales of bathroom safety items, ramps and mobility equipment. I have a store and warehouse full of items used on a daily basis. We also work with all the other payers. Q: What makes you keep going? A: ands do n, my customers. hen someone comes by just to say, “Thank you for all your help getting what we needed,” or for the help with their mom or dad — it’s these times I know I am just where God intended me to be, and I wouldn’t be anywhere else. I say this as I’m leaving a friend on a Saturday afternoon to meet someone at my store for a transfer belt and patient alarm so they can bring a dementia patient home.

280 Living September 2017  
280 Living September 2017