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The Homewood Star | March 2012 |

neighborly news & entertainment for Homewood

Volume 1 | Issue 12 | March 2012

Best of Homewood Winners- pg 12

HHS Basketball - pg 19

O’Carr’s - pg 16

A park for West Homewood

Oxmoor Road improvements project underway By CRAIG KLEIMEYER

The new expansion of Patriot Park will begin this March. Photo courtesy of Homewood Parks and Recreation.

By BROOKE BOuCEK The West Homewood community will have access to expanded recreation facilities at Patriot Park. Construction is scheduled to begin in early March at the corner of Oak

March Features Mayor’s Minute


Adelle Sperling


Upcoming events


Police dispatcher artist


Trees for Homewood




Lauren Denton


The Pablo Cruise Incident


Restaurant Showcase


Business Spotlight




School House


Calendar of Events


Like us

Pre-Sort Standard U.S. Postage PAID Birmingham, AL Permit #656

Grove Road and Raleigh Avenue. “It will look like a scaled down version of [Homewood’s] Central Park with similar amenities including pavilions, paved walking paths, restrooms, a large green space with new sod and lighting around

the perimeter of the park,” Homewood City Councilman Fred Hawkins said. Councilmen Vance Moody and Fred Hawkins have been advocating for the park expansion on the city’s agenda and have

See PARK | page 15

West Homewood residents can look forward to reduced traffic and safety problems along Oxmoor Road. Survey and design work has begun for the city’s Oxmoor Road improvements project. City residents can expect construction to begin in 2014 and last about 18 months, according to City Council member Fred Hawkins. The improvements will span about a mile, from Green Springs Avenue to Barber Court. “While it’s under construction, there will be a little bit of bother temporarily, but when it’s built, traffic and safety will be a lot better,” Hawkins said. “The road will be better designed to accommodate the traffic.” The plan includes turn lanes and road realignments that will improve traffic flow. According to Hawkins, the Homewood City Council will soon determine a date for a public meeting to discuss the road projects with residents and business owners and to give the public an update on what to expect. The construction area

See OXMOOR | page 23

A fateful day in France By RICK WATSON

June 19, 1944 stands out in Bill Massey’s mind as though it were yesterday. The B-17 bomber pilot had flown four missions into Berlin and flown over Omaha Beach with a bird’s eye view of the D-Day invasion, but this day was different. It was the day the Air Force was supposed to promote the now Homewood resident to captain. And it was the day he would fly over France at 26,000 feet—without a parachute up in 25-degrees-belowzero temperatures. Massey’s crew had been about 30 minutes from their target in Bordeaux, France when they encountered anti-aircraft flak so thick that it actually turned day into night. At that moment, a round hit his plane’s hydraulic system and the cockpit quickly filled with acrid black smoke. His 10-member crew couldn’t extinguish the fire, so Massey gave the order to bail out. But before he could snap his parachute to his harness, the oxygen tanks in the B-17 exploded and ripped the plane apart.

See FRANCE | page 14

Bill Massey, who lives at Brookdale Place in Homewood, points to the pilot compartment of the B-17 Flying Fortress aircraft that he flew in WWII. Photo by Rick Watson.


| March 2012 |

The Homewood Star

Editor’s Note

Brownies in Edgewood Elementary 3rd grade troops #217 and #101 served breakfast to the women and children of First Light shelter: Maggie Sheffer, Sarah Parker Lowery, Alyssa Langford, Olivia Cornella, Lucy Sheffer, Grace Sullivan, Liza Jane Ponder, Reed Jeffries, Leland Young, Ellie Willcutt, Clara Page Skelton, Abby Brown.

Staff & Friends Contributing Writers Anna Cate Little | Katie Stewart | Lauren Denton Rick Watson | Blake Rhodes | Brooke Boucek Mia Bass | Merrick Wilson | Mary Ellen Snell

Contributing Photographers Anna Cate Little | Rick Watson


March is the month that officially marks the beginning of springtime on my personal calendar. We’re now about three weeks away from Spring Break vacation, spring clothes are now out in stores, local churches are holding spring consignment sales (one of my favorites), and this year’s Homewood city-wide Easter Egg Hunt at Homewood Central Park is on Saturday the 31st. Are you traveling somewhere fun this year for Spring Break? Send us your vacation photos when you get home—be sure to include a copy of The Homewood Star in your photo, and we will run our favorites in the next issue and post them online. If you’re staying at home and want to live vicariously through others, be sure to read on page 11 where some Homewood Middle School students are going this year. Student Abby Moss has written a Spring Break travel update on a few of her classmates. Thanks to all of you who voted and participated in our 2012 “Best of Homewood” contest. We had a large number of votes to tally, and they are finally in! We are pleased to announce the winners who altogether make up “The Best of Homewood.” It was a close competition in all categories, which proves that Homewood is blessed to have such amazing businesses. You can check them out on pages 12 and 13 .

We also highlight a number of interesting persons in this issue: Adelle Sperling, otherwise known to many of us as “The Bike Lady,” has willingly shared her story with The Homewood Star, and what an inspiration she is. Read about her daily bike adventures on page 6. Homewood police dispatcher Kevin Webster is also a talented artist who says his creative streak is inspired by “all things Homewood.” Read more about Kevin on page 8. Lastly, Homewood resident Jeff Fowler is undertaking an initiative to revive the Edgewood area with natural beauty and plenty of shade. The story of his tree planting endeavors can be found on page 9. We are approaching our one-year anniversary as a newspaper in April. We consider ourselves blessed to have had you on this journey with us. We would love to hear what you like best about our paper and what you would like to see us include in the coming year. Please email me at with your feedback and ideas. I have enjoyed reading all of the emails from you this year, so keep them coming! Enjoy the spring!

Call for spring break photos Headed to the beach? The mountains? Wherever you go for spring break, send us your pictures. The Homewood Star is collecting spring break memories from Homewood residents. We’ll publish our favorites in print in an upcoming issue and put all submissions online. Email photos to

Dan Starnes

Editor Ashley Berkery

Meet our interns

Managing Editor Madoline Markham

Creative Director Keith McCoy

Virginia Duffee is from Birmingham and is a senior at the University of Montevallo. Apart from majoring in graphic design, she enjoys studying art history, drawing, yoga, watching movies, and reading books.

Editor at Large Joe Samuel Starnes

Published by Homewood Star LLC

Sales and Distribution

Rhonda Smith | Angela Morris | Dan Starnes

Interns Craig Kleimeyer | Virginia Duffee

Contact Information: The Homewood Star #3 Office Park Circle, Suite 316 Birmingham, AL 35223 313-1780

Please submit all articles, information and photos to: P.O. Box 530341 Birmingham, AL 35253 Legals: The Homewood Star is published monthly. Reproduction or use of editorial or graphic content without prior permission is prohibited. The Homewood Star is designed to inform the Homewood community of area school, family and community events. Information in The Homewood Star is gathered from sources considered reliable but the accuracy cannot be guaranteed. All articles/photos submitted become the property of The Homewood Star. We reserve the right to edit articles/photos as deemed necessary and are under no obligation to publish or return photos submitted. Inaccuracies or errors should be brought to the attention of the publisher at (205) 313-1780 or by email. Please recycle this paper

Craig Kleimeyer is a senior journalism and mass communication major and music minor at Samford University. When Craig has free time, she enjoys singing, journaling and outdoor runs. Craig looks forward to graduating in a few months and to seeing where the Lord leads her in the real world.

Please Support Our Sponsors Alabama Allergy & Asthma Center (23) aloft (5) Armor Insurance (4) Bham Botanical Gardens (21) Briarcliff Shop (19) Curb Appeal (9) D1 Sports (22) Dale Snodgrass (17) Dawson Family of Faith (10) First Lenders (21) General Pest Control (6) Hamburger Heaven (8) Harmony Landing (14) Homewood Antiques (19) Homewood Family Dentistry (6) Homewood Music (20) Homewood Parks and Rec (18)

Hunter’s Cleaners (16) InShape MD (23) Jacqueline DeMarco (17) Medhelp ( 10) Michael’s Restaurant (8) New York Pizza (5) Oxmoor Orthodontics (14) Pat Thetford (11) Piggly Wiggly (11) Renaissance Consignment (15) Rosewood Hall (3) Salem’s Diner (9) Skin Wellness Center (16) The Maids (1) The Wade Team (4) Trinity Medical Center (9) UAB Medicine (24)

The Homewood Star

| March 2012 |

Have you seen...

Rosewood Hall?

Rosewood Hall at SoHo Square, located at Homewood City Hall, was completed in the fall of 2005. It encompasses a contemporary design and is the perfect destination for your perfect event. It features three separate meeting rooms, which can be combined along with the Terrazo area to accommodate up to 600 guests. The rooms are equipped with state of the art audio and visual equipment, as well as an entertainment stage and over-sized dance floor. Conveniently located off Highway 31 in downtown Homewood, Rosewood Hall is a unique addition to the local community, providing an upscale contemporary location for events of any kind. Rosewood Hall hosts such events as wedding receptions, rehearsal dinners, non-profit fundraisers, anniversary parties, bat/bar mitzvahs, reunions, corporate events/seminars, Holiday parties and sorority/fraternity formals. 2850 19th Street South, Homewood AL. 35209 PHONE: 205.332.6119




| March 2012 | The Homewood Star

Can we see your address? HPD wins at Polar Plunge From the Homewood Fire Department

Lori Dooley, Kathy Henderson, Bob Copus and Ken Atkinson with Director of Polar Plunge and Pelham Police Officer Debbie Sumrall.

The Homewood Police Department participated in the 2012 Law Enforcement Torch Run Polar Plunge at Oak Mountain

Photo courtesy of Homewood Fire Department

According to Fire Chief John Bresnan, Homewood Fire and Rescue Service has found it increasingly difficult to see some of the address identification numbers on houses, apartments and businesses within our city. Lack of visibility can be due to remodeling, architectural design or omission of the address number entirely. The absence of a properly displayed address number can greatly delay the delivery of emergency services in the event of fires or medical emergencies. If you are not sure about the visibility of the numbers on your house, apartment or business, simply walk out to the street and look to see if you can read them. If you can’t read them, we ask that you install new numbers. Please follow the below suggestions for installing address numbers as soon as possible.

State Park Beach benefitting Special Olympics in January. The team won the costume contest.

ff All numbers should be at least 4 inches

HPD’s online safety tips

ff The numbers should be a contrasting


ff Numbers should be placed so they are

The following tips will make it safer when using your computer on the internet:


color to their background. Consider adding reflective numbers. visible from the street.

ff The street-mounted mailbox should

ff If your operating system or software has a firewall make sure it is turned on.

be numbered on both sides because emergency vehicles may be responding from either direction.

ff Make sure your security software is set

ff The numbers should not be blocked by

ff Shut off your computer when not in

ff Suite and apartment numbers or letters

ff Avoid using computers in public


are part of an address and need to be visible also.


to update automatically. use.

areas at libraries, hotels or airports for conducting financial or personal business.

ff Run antivirus software.

ff Use a credit card when shopping online. ff Guard personal information. Never

respond to e-mail requesting your passwords, user names, social security numbers or personal information.

ff Review your accounts regularly. If you believe you have been a victim of fraud, contact your bank immediately. Close accounts that have been tampered with and contact the three major credit bureaus, Eqifax, Experian and Transunion. Contact your local police department and file a police report.

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The Homewood Star

| March 2012 |

Mayor’s Minute Dear neighbors, I hope you and your family are doing well and trust you are getting ready for spring! Again, there are many good things happening in our great city, and I wanted to take a moment and discuss some of them briefly with you. Many of you have called or emailed to thank the City for the new Recycling Program and for that we are grateful. It is turning out to be very successful and headed in the direction in which we hoped. In January 2011, the City of Homewood collected 76 tons of recycling. When compared to the 116 tons collected in January 2012, it is easy to see that the participation has greatly increased. This means the City of Homewood did not have to pay for the additional 40 tons to be sent to a landfill. And if the numbers hold, when annualized, that means we will keep from sending 480 tons to the landfill this year. Thank you so much to those of you who are recycling! There are a few housekeeping items regarding recycling that would greatly help our city and your neighbors, but we need your assistance. Once your recycling has been picked up, it would be very much appreciated if the bins were removed from the street and placed behind your home out of sight. This will enhance the beauty of our neighborhoods and make our streets much safer for travel. Another benefit associated with the recycling program is their reward program. As a reminder if you haven’t already, go to www.MyRepublicRewards. com to register your home. You should have received a card in the mail with your personal PIN number allowing you to “self report” each time your family recycles. Based on your personal participation and city participation, rewards can then be redeemed to save you and your family money at many national and local businesses. If you do not have your PIN number, please call Allied at 1-888-7272978, and they will assist in getting that number to you. I also wanted to give a brief update on West Oxmoor Road. As you may recall, the road is owned by Jefferson County, and we had requested assistance in getting it restriped. The County was unable to assist,

but thanks to the City Council allowing me to proceed with this project, I am happy to announce the restriping has now taken place, making it much easier to drive at night and in the rain. For those of you who travel this road frequently, you know how hard it was getting to see, and hopefully, this is a great improvement. We are currently identifying other areas within the city that needs restriping and once the weather warms some, we will be able to proceed with those improvements, as well. On Thursday, Feb. 23, the Chamber of Commerce proudly hosted its annual Taste of Homewood. Again, I am pleased to announce it was a huge success, and we appreciate all the businesses who participated in the event. It is a great time for local restaurants to showcase their food and for families to come and support the very best Homewood has to offer. I am so thankful to Tricia Ford, our Chamber Director, and Caroline Hubbard, her assistant. They along with Steve Preston, our Chamber President, continue to work hard providing services to our local businesses. They also assist me greatly in bringing new businesses into Homewood. If you own a business and are not a member, please consider joining our Chamber of Commerce by calling 871-5631. Thank you to all the local restaurants who participated in the Taste of Homewood, and we look forward to the great event again next year! Again, please remember to remove your recycling bins from the front of your home after pickup. The City of Homewood will appreciate it and so will your neighbors. Please know you can call on me personally or any of our City Council members if we can assist you in any way. With kindest regards I remain




s t yle at a s t eal

Scott McBrayer Mayor City of Homewood

alof t Bir mingham Soho Squar e

City Council and Samford discuss joint park project By CRAIG KLEIMEYER Samford University and the City of Homewood have begun plans for a new park to be built to the north of Samford’s campus. In July 2011, the University proposed the joint park project and asked to meet with officials of the City of Homewood and interested area residents to develop a plan for a cooperative effort to build the park. Before discussing the park design, such as the amenities, size and layout, the University and the Homewood City Council will determine how to establish, maintain, and operate the park in accordance with the law. Samford Vice President for Operations and Planning Sarah C. Latham said that the partnership process has begun. “At this point, we are discussing what a potential park partnership might look like as it relates to liability, maintenance and other factors,” Latham said. “There was also a survey open to neighbors in January to get feedback on what they would like to see as it relates to a park. We are very early on in the discussion, and there will be ample opportunity for feedback.” Samford and the Homewood City Council still need to discuss what the land ownership would look like, what zoning issue would be involved with park placement, how maintenance would be

A sketch of a potential design for a joint Samford University-City of Homewood park.

handled, and the liability issues when using the park. In 2008, Samford developed a park proposal for potential collaboration with the city that was a starting point of conversation regarding park costs. The proposal totaled $172,000 and did not factor in the value of the land or any facility removal that might be required because of the park’s size. Once Samford and the Homewood City Council agree on what the park partnership would look like, city officials, neighbors, and the University will then come together and determine park size, location and amenities.

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| March 2012 | The Homewood Star

To the beat of a different drum Eighty-year-old Adelle Sperling bikes around Homewood daily By MADOLINE MARKHAM Adelle Sperling drives a car about once every six weeks. The rest of the time, the 80 year old rides her bike. “You’d say she acts like she’s 25,” said Dr. Johnny Peebles III, her neighbor of 50 years. “She has the health to go along with her actions.” “I ride a minimum of 15 miles each day,” Sperling said. “Sometimes it’s 22 or 23, depending on the weather.” Biking around Homewood daily isn’t the only thing that sets her apart from a crowd, either. In 1957 she was one of five women to graduate from the University of Alabama School of Medicine in downtown Birmingham. As one of few female ophthalmologists of her day, she became head of the VA Eye Clinic in Birmingham before going into private practice in Southside on 11th Avenue. In her 40s, Sperling took up ice-skating for fun. At 57, she got on a bike for the first time since she was a teenager. On Thursdays she walks from her home near the Shades Valley YMCA to Brookwood Hospital for continuing education to keep up her medical licensure. She has walked to the Jefferson County Department of Health and Medical Center and Social Security office downtown. “I was adventurous,” she said. Each day Sperling bikes by Homewood Central Park past the Homewood Library and Nabeel’s to downtown Homewood. She usually takes a pit stop at the Homewood Community Center and talks to the ladies there before going on to O’Henry’s. At the coffee shop she orders a bagel and coffee, catches up with friends and

Lifelong Homewood resident Adelle Sperling, 80, bikes to O’Henry’s on 18th Street daily. Photo by Madoline Markham.

reads the paper. Sometimes it’s midafternoon by the time she gets home. “You meet an awful lot of interesting people at O’Henry’s,” she said. If Sperling has struck up a conversation with you along her way, she’s probably convinced you of the necessity of taking vitamin D supplements, shared her support of animal rights and animal shelters, and conveyed how she enjoys computers and her two cats. Sperling’s biking hasn’t gone without injury. One day she said she was run over by a station wagon on Lakeshore Drive. “I jumped off the bike when it happened,” she said, “but it took six weeks before I could walk up stairs like normal again.” Today Sperling is cautious on the road and is sure to protect herself. A rearview mirror is mounted on Sperling’s pink helmet. “I wouldn’t go anywhere without a helmet if you paid me,” she said. A lifelong Homewood resident, Sperling has lived in the same house almost consecutively since 1938 when her father bought it. She went to Shades Cahaba School through eighth grade and then Phillips High School. She later graduated with a degree in chemistry from Birmingham-Southern College. Sperling completed her residency in Birmingham before leaving for further training in Boston and New York City. Although she has been proud to call Homewood home for most of her 80 years, that does not mean she doesn’t plan to travel more—with her bike of course. “I might want to bike through Napa Valley one day,” she said.


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The Homewood Star | March 2012 |

City-wide Easter Egg Hunt set for March 31 Homewood’s City-Wide Easter Egg Hunt will be held at Homewood Central Park on Saturday, March 31. Children ages 1 through 12 are welcome for the festivities. Games will be held 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., and the egg hunt will begin at 11 a.m. Children will be divided into appropriate

age groups, and there will be a special needs group as well. Each child should bring an Easter basket or bucket. The Easter Bunny will be available for pictures at no cost. For more information, contact Rosie Kelly at 332-6182 or 871-7304.


St. Patrick’s 5K for Haiti relief By CRAIG KLEIMEYER Come out to Homewood Central Park on St. Patrick’s Day on Saturday, March 17 for a run to support A Silver Lining, Inc. The non-profit organization helps provide medical relief to children in Haiti. A few years have past since the earthquake rocked the country, but needs are still great. The event will include winners’ awards and children’s zone complete with a moon bounce, face painting and balloons. The Homewood Fire Department, Humane Society and local food and arts vendors

will also participate. All of the members and event workers are volunteers, and 100 percent of the proceeds will go solely to help meet the medical needs of the children in Haiti. Race day registration begins at 8 a.m., and the race begins at 8:30 a.m. Festivities will continue until 12 p.m. Register online via id=1994881 or visit the A Silver Lining, Inc. website at for more information.

Senior Center receives tulip poplar HCS Showcase on March 13 The Edgewood Garden Club chose Homewood Senior Center as the recipient of their 2011 live tree donation. To select the species and particular place to plant it, Senior Center Director Aimee ThorntonVance consulted with Henry Hughes of the Birmingham Botanical Gardens, and they decided on a tulip poplar, the tallest hardwood species in the Eastern United States. Homewood Park & Recreation’s Landscape crew planted the tree on Jan. 20 on the northwest lawn of the Senior Center adjacent to Patriot Park. Senior Center members and Patriot Park visitors look forward to the tree’s large yellow tulipshaped blooms with orange markings in late spring and its glowing yellow foliage in autumn.

The Homewood City Schools Showcase 2012 will be held Tuesday, March 13 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Homewood Middle School. Showcase celebrates the talents and achievements of students and teachers from all five Homewood Schools. The public is invited to attend this free event. Parking is limited at Homewood Middle School, so there will be free transportation from Dawson Baptist Church and Trinity United Methodist Church parking lots to shuttle people to and from Homewood Middle School.

The evening will feature performances by the Homewood High School Show Choir, a combined elementary school choir, Homewood Middle School Patriot Singers and Homewood High School Drumline, as well as displays and performances by many other school groups. Art from all five schools will be on display in the hallway. At 7 p.m., Homewood City Schools Foundation will present iPads to each of the five principals and recognize significant donors. For more information, visit www.

Lil’ Lambs Consignment Sale Trinity United Methodist Church in Homewood is holding its spring Lil’ Lambs consignment sale on Friday, March 9 and Saturday, March 10 in the church gym. On Friday the sale will be from 9 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. Saturday’s hours are from 9 a.m. until 12 p.m. Most items sold on Saturday will be half-priced. Lil’ Lambs sale includes gently used

Front row: Ann Damsgard of Edgewood Garden Club, Senior Center member Antoinette Klein. Second row: Anlie Green of Edgewood Garden Club, Senior Center Director Aimee ThorntonVance, Senior Center member Dottie Collins. Third row: Clifford Lake, Jamie Cook, and Dusty Johnson of Homewood Parks & Rec Landscaping. (Not pictured: Chris Underwood, President of Edgewood Garden Club).

infant and children’s clothing, accessories, toys and nursery items. The sellers receive 70 percent of proceeds while the remaining 30 percent helps support Trinity’s children ministries. Trinity United Methodist Church is located at 1400 Oxmoor Road. For more information call Bill Hutto at 871-1416 or visit

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| March 2012 |

The Homewood Star

Former military man now artistic police dispatcher By KATIE STEWART A retired military man, a police dispatcher and an artist—not just anybody can boast about being all three, but Kevin Webster does with great pride. Originally from Gardendale, Webster now dispatches for the Homewood Police Department and displays his artwork in Monty Stabler Galleries in downtown Homewood. During his Army career, he painted military-themed pieces, but now his subjects are dogs, horses and other wildlife. He considers himself a contemporary realist and paints with oils. “I love painting ordinary things,” Webster said. “Sometimes objects will strike me, and I just have to paint them. It’s hard to explain. The way the light hits it, the look in an animal’s eyes, the shadow… something in the image stirs me and I have to paint it. There isn’t any political

Kevin Webster stands by his favorite painting at Monty Stabler Galleries in downtown Homewood. Photo by Katie Stewart.

Kevin Webster’s panel painting of the Alabama Theater looks three-dimensional. Photo by Katie Stewart.

or religious reason why I do it; I have no agenda. I paint because I love to create.” Webster finds inspiration from the Homewood area. He said that the night view of Homewood provides a smalltown feel not readily available in most of Birmingham. “I knew once I retired from my previous job that I wanted to work in Homewood,” Webster said. “I was at a point in my life where I didn’t have to settle, and now here I am absolutely loving my job and its location.” Before his job as a dispatcher, Webster spent four years in the Marine Corps. After high school, Webster was offered an art scholarship, but he turned it down to join the Marines. Little did he know he would find art in that job as well. “I fell in love with the military after

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high school, but I found out the Army was a better fit than the Marines,” Webster said. “However, what is so great about the military and what I didn’t realize at the time, was that they had an art program. I originally didn’t think I could make a career out of painting, so it was a great outlet.” Webster was able to paint for military headquarters, museums and the Pentagon. He even painted an image of the 101st Airborne Division at one of the battles in Iraq at the request of General David Petraeus. However, it wasn’t until he retired that Webster had time to paint leisurely. “My job now is stressful, but not on the same level as when I was in the military,” Webster said. “As a police dispatcher, once I leave my job at the end of the day, I’m done. I can go home and actually have the

time to paint.” Webster’s work was on display at the Monty Stabler Galleries in Homewood in the fall. The exhibit consisted of paintings of dogs, horses, wildlife and panel paintings of some of Birmingham’s landmarks. “The collection had a good mix of paintings,” Webster said. “My favorite is by far one of the panel paintings. It is the one of a black water tower that is located on the north side of Birmingham. In the back you can see power lines with birds perched on them. What is so fantastic is that the painting is basically black, white and blue. The simplicity of using these colors makes for a very interesting piece.” For more information on Kevin Webster’s art, find him on Facebook or contact Monty Stabler Galleries, 1811 29th Ave. S., at 8799888 or

The Homewood Star

| March 2012 |


Dawson’s new children’s building opening BY BROOKE BOuCEK Dawson Memorial Baptist Church in Edgewood will at last open its Edgar M. Arendall Children’s Educational Building on Sunday, March 4. “The new building will allow us to better minister to smaller children and their parents while continuing to provide a secure, safe environment,” Senior Pastor Dr. Gary Fenton said. The three-floor, 45,000-square-foot building has been under construction since groundbreaking last February. It will house students from pre-kindergarten to twelfth grade. Classrooms for preschool children ages four and five will be located on the lower level. The entry-level floor will include a Welcome Center, access to the Sanctuary and classrooms for preschoolers, ages birth through 3 years old. Grades 1-4 have designated space on the second floor. Classrooms and gathering areas with new technology on the third floor will be used for the middle and high school student ministry. “The building really gives us an optimal opportunity to minister to the community,” said Minister of Christian Education Jan Jones. Over the last four years the number of young families at the church has increased. Dr. Fenton said that the church has estimated about 70 births from members each year. The new classrooms with

preschool worship room and toddlers’ playroom will provide a safe and nurturing environment for the children. “The infant area has been very crowded, and I am excited for the children and staff to be able to spread out with their equipment in the new space,” said Preschool Minister Brooke Gibson. This new space will reach out to all children in the community that participate in Dawson’s programs. Typically half of the children who participate in KidLife, the Vacation Bible School at Dawson, are non-members. Many non-members also participate in the family recreation and the music academy at the church. “This (space) will give us a better place to continue our ministry with its emphasis on priority of children in a child-friendly and secure environment,” Dr. Fenton said. The same day of the building’s opening, the church will also open Kids Connection. This program will supply basic needs for children from birth to age 16 referred by a social agency. This new center will be located on Green Springs between the Salvation Army and Pizza Hut, 32 Green Springs Highway. “The people of Homewood both in and outside our church value education, training and children in general,” Dr. Fenton said. “We’re excited to share this new space with them.”

Returning shaded beauty to Homewood By BROOKE BOuCEK Jeff Fowler is not a gardener, but he is planting trees all over Homewood. As an architect at Evan and Terry Associates, the Edgewood resident appreciates the aesthetics of design and likes the results in appearance. “The ideal neighborhood image is what Homewood used to be,” Fowler said. “A place where everyone is sitting out on their front porch and the sidewalks are shaded by canopied trees.” A 15-year Homewood resident, the father of three said he wishes his kids could play on the shaded sidewalks. Neighbors told him that the streets of Homewood used to be covered with shaded trees, but they were all noticing a change. Due to Dutch Elm Disease, storms and older trees were disappearing from Homewood. The city has recently enacted a tree ordinance to emphasize this importance of maintaining an urban forest, but Fowler had already taken action. In an attempt to receive tree grants, he turned to his local community. Neighbors began to get excited about his project and the word spread. After researching, Fowler decided to plant Princeton elms throughout the area. These trees are sustainable in urban environments and their low root system allows for sidewalks to stay intact. The Princeton elm trees are also Dutch Elm Disease-resistant, are fast growers and do not produce acorns. “I thought they would be an interesting and different choice,” said Fowler. “They have a sort of vase shape with an arched type tree canopy that forms an alley.” Jeff Fowler has already planted 29 Princeton elm trees throughout Homewood. Sharp Top in White, Ga., supplied him with the Princeton elms at just $30 a tree. “I was shocked at the amount of positive feedback I got,” Fowler said. “All

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Jeff Fowler stands next to one of his Princeton elm trees. Photo by Brooke Boucek.

but one neighbor contributed, and I was able to get a church and apartment complex involved.” Jeff Fowler encourages others to get involved in the project. When trees die, it is our job to replant them, he said. “If people get involved, maybe we can bring back that Mayberry kind of feel,” Fowler said. “The kind of place Homewood is supposed to be.” For more information on how to get involved, email Jeff Fowler at jscottfowler64@

The last thing a surgical patient needs is more pain. So gynecologic surgeon and Trinity medical staff member, Robert DeSantis, M.D., has become an expert in the use of da Vinci® robotic-assisted women’s surgeries. In fact, Dr. DeSantis is one of the area’s only surgeons performing complex procedures with the da Vinci Surgical System, including hysterectomies, and surgeries for endometriosis, uterine prolapse and uterine fibroids. These procedures may mean less pain, less scarring and less time in the hospital for many patients. And the shorter your recovery, the faster you can get back to your life. Dr. DeSantis is now seeing patients in Birmingham and Chelsea. Call 205-592-5499 for more information. Two LocATIonS: Trinity oB/GYn 860 Montclair Road, Suite 251 • Birmingham Trinity Medical clinics 331 chelsea corners way • chelsea Trinity Medical Center is directly or indirectly owned by a partnership that proudly includes physician owners, including certain members of the hospital’s medical staff.

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2/6/12 9:59 AM


| March 2012 | The Homewood Star

Showstoppers take the stage By KATIE STEWART Over the squeals of kids at the Children’s Dance Foundation, a slight taptap-tap can be heard in the background. Peaking around the hallway, you’ll see women of all ages tap dancing. They are the Showstoppers. The ladies tap dance group has been meeting for over a decade, never stopping to slow down. “I look forward to every Wednesday when I get to dance my heart out,” Barbara Johnson said. “It’s by far my favorite day of the week.” The dance group has been recognized nationally. A Miss Senior Alabama winner came from their classes, and they have been asked to perform annually at the Miss Senior America pageant. Class teacher Rita Childers has been with them for every step of the journey. “It has been an absolutely amazing experience,” Childers said. “These ladies are fantastic and have so much energy. They deserve all the recognition they are given.” With ages ranging from 30s to 80s, conversation is always interesting as they learn together and grow in friendship. “The diversity of the women here is so fantastic,” Patsy Steed said. “The class is simply for people who love dance, so we know we will all have at least one thing in common.” The love of dance in these ladies’ hearts matches their incredible talent, as well. “I had always wanted to do an adult tap class,” Steed said. “I heard about Showstoppers and thought I would check them out. I was amazed at how good these ladies were. I had a lot of catching up to do, but I did it, and now I’m with them tapping away every Wednesday afternoon.”

The Showstoppers, including Miss Senior Alabama Frankie Cashion, Coquette Barnes and Barbara Johnson, practice their dance to Frank Sinatra’s “Come Fly With Me.”

Although Showstoppers has been around since 1998, many of the women originated in UAB’s senior entertainment group, MedWise. This group consisted of stand-up comics, dancers, acrobats and more. However, due to funding issues, it was cut, and thus Showstoppers was formed. “I’m one of the girls who has been here the longest, since MedWise,” Bess Constantine said. “The group has been

great for me because I’m not originally from Birmingham. It’s allowed me to meet all kinds of women and see parts of Birmingham I didn’t think I would get to see.” Some ladies have been friends since they were 18, while others met just last week. Even leaving the studio the women can be overheard making plans to head to Jackson’s after their class for an afternoon treat.

“I love the camaraderie of the group,” Constantine said. “We all just love to dance. Anyone is welcome, as long as you know that you’re never too old to get out there; as long as you can walk, you can dance.” Showstoppers meet every Wednesday at the Children’s Dance Foundation. For more information, email Rita Childers at ritab0703@ or call CDF at 870-0073.

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The Homewood Star | March 2012 |

HMS students await Spring Break


Ordinary Days Of Pinterest and envy By LAuREN DENTON

Front row: Venice Sanders and Abby Moss. Back row: Darian Hendrix & Trevor Kent. Photo courtesy of Mary Binkley.

By ABBY MOSS The students at Homewood Middle School can’t wait for spring break! Each student has a different plan for what they’re going to do on their week off. From “stay”cations to “away” -cations, everyone has spring fever. Some of our students have given us a taste of their spring break plans. Sixth grader Broughton Kirkpatrick is going to New York City. Her birthday is also during spring break. She is excited about going to see many different places. Unfortunately, the Statue of Liberty is closed so they will be riding around it in boats and water taxis. She will also be going to Grand Central Station, Times Square and even Wicked on Broadway. Seventh grader Venice Sanders is going to Miami, Fla. She usually goes to see her family that lives there. When she gets to Miami, the first thing she will do is swim in the warm, wide open ocean. She is traveling by car, so they will have to pass through a lot of toll booths. There is an outlet mall that she always visits. The last few years she’s gone, she hasn’t been

able to go to the beach, but this year she hopes she will be able to go for a swim in the ocean. Seventh grader Trevor Kent and his family are going on a cruise to the Bahamas. This is Trevor’s first time on a ship, and he admits he’s a little nervous. The thing he hopes to do is go snorkeling and see some ocean life. He also plans to go parasailing on the ship. Seventh grader Darian Hendrix is going to visit her uncle in Chicago for his seventieth birthday. Her favorite place to visit at night is the famous “loop,” which is so cool. There are also a lot of museums to see. I’m going to Washington D.C. for the first time. My family and I are going to tour some of our nation’s most famous museums and monuments. Some of the things I can’t wait to see are the Lincoln Monument and the Smithsonian Museum. The thing I can’t wait to see the most is the Julia Child exhibit. But the part I’m not looking forward to is the 13-hour car ride.

Maybe I’m a bit late to the party, but I’ve finally discovered Pinterest. I’d been hearing about it for a long time from nearly every woman I know, but I just didn’t get it. What does it mean to “pin” something? Why not just pull pages out of magazines and bookmark web pages like I’ve been doing for years? A few weeks ago, I decided to give it a go, and I’m hooked. I’ve found ideas for color schemes, craft projects, new recipes and holiday decorating plans. It’s made me want to pull out my glue gun, a roasting pan and my dusty sewing machine! I’ve also seen it uncover something a bit less desirable in myself. Sometimes when I’m perusing those Pinterest photos, I start to wish that my life resembled the photos I see. More than that, I find myself envying the owners of the beautiful dining rooms with antique tables set with vintage china for 12. I start wishing my bedroom had such a plush bed layered in exquisite bedding and goose-down pillows. I click on one of those recipes, which sends me to a lovely little blog from some mother who spends all her time baking organic goodies for her family, sewing all her kids’ clothes, raising heritage chickens and saving homeless puppies. At least it looks that way from the luscious photos peppering her blog. I start to think—what am I doing wrong? To be even more honest, I did this before Pinterest came into my life. Just watching another woman walking through the neighborhood with her (I imagine) well dressed children, dog who never poops in anyone’s yard, and shiny new running shoes, I think, “She totally has it together.” Or seeing someone at a restaurant wearing her business casual best, looking polished

and chic, while I have a smear of milk on my pants from Kate’s hands and my hair is in a messy ponytail. My thoughts run along the lines of, “She’s got it all figured out.” For me, Pinterest can at times be just another way to gawk at what other people have and think, “Wow, their life must be so easy and effortless—I mean, look at their two kids playing together so calmly while sitting on that gorgeous white couch with matching ikat pillows.” Other times, Pinterest is just what it is supposed to be—a way to organize my ideas and pick up inspiration from other places—but in those times when it makes me covet what I don’t have, I force myself to look up from the computer screen and take a hard look at my own life. Sure, our couch was in my husband Matt’s bachelor pad way before we were married, but it’s a place of refuge for us at the end of a long day when all we want to do is flop down and watch Modern Family. Yes, our dining table is about 30 years old and slightly bowed in the middle, but it was made by my grandfather’s own hands and has allowed four generations of my family to eat dinner on its pine boards. Yes, our house lacks the deep front porch I crave, but our daughter is learning to walk down the front steps on her own, and in about five months, we’ll be carrying another child through our front door, porch or no porch. Instead of pining for more and better, my refrain should be, “Lord teach me the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or want. I can do all things through you who gives me strength.” Lauren can be reached at LaurenKDenton@

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| March 2012 | The Best of Homewood





The Homewood Star would like to thank everyone who voted in our first Best of Homewood competition. Congratulations to all our winners.

Best Coffee Shop

O’Henry’s Coffees O’Henry’s helps us start the day off right with fresh muffins, scones, cinnamon rolls and of course a hot cup of coffee. Their coffee beans are delivered fresh to the store every week, and you can choose from up to 45 coffees by the pound. It’s the perfect study spot and also great for catching up with a friend. 2831 18th Street South, 870-1198. 569 Brookwood Village, Ste. 101, 870-1148. Runner Up: Hart and Soul

Best Hamburger

Five Guys Burgers & Fries With a variety of hamburgers and hot dogs plus Cajunstyle fries cooked in pure, no cholesterol, peanut oil, this place is hard to beat. Also, you can choose as many free toppings as you want for your burgers or dog. And to top it off, they offer the delicious complimentary roasted peanuts. 585 Brookwood Village, 414-8459 Runner Up: Hamburger Heaven

Best Barbecue

Saw’s BBQ Saw’s Sauce is so good you can now find it at grocery stores all over the country, but all those other places don’t get to eat red or white sauce atop Saw’s tender pulled pork, smoked chicken and ribs like we do here in Edgewood. The barbecue institution also offers all

the barbecue fixings we love as well as stuffed taters. 1008 Oxmoor Road, 879-1937 Runner Up: Jim N Nick’s Bar-B-Q

Best Chicken Salad

O’Carr’s We all know why this place has been around since 1975. O’Carr’s sells 2,000 pounds of their amazing chicken salad every week. And, you can get the chicken salad with fruit, crackers or greens, or on sandwich bread, and then finish off your meal with a palate-pleasing milkshake that overflows from the glass. 2909 18th Street South, 879-2196 Runner Up: Zoe’s Kitchen

Best Wings

Tie: Oak Hill Bar & Grill and Zaxby’s Pull up a chair, grab a beer and chat with friends while devouring your wings at local pub Oak Hill, or stop by convenient and quick Zaxby’s for an equally delicious taste – and a drive through in case you are in a real hurry for those wings! Oak Hill, 2835 18th Street South, 870-8277. Zaxby’s, 282 Palisades Blvd., 423-0523. Runner Up: Dave’s

Best Brunch

Brio Poached eggs cooked to order; white chocolate raspberry French toast; crepes topped with fresh fruit, granola and cream cheese; sausage Florentine or crab and shrimp crepes; Brio’s Omelet Del Giorno—no wonder we voted it the best. And, with their $2.95 bar menu, they keep us coming back for more. 591 Brookwood Village, 879-9177 Runner Up: Crape Myrtle’s Café

Best Garden Shop

Garden Shop of Homewood Not only has the Garden Shop of Homewood expanded their supply of organically-grown plants, but they provide customers with items that are made close to home. Believing community is important and carrying products from local suppliers, including a new addition of “Not Yo’ Mama’s” pepper jellies, is why this Garden Shop has won the hearts of Homewood residents. 307 Oxmoor Road, 445-1010 Runner Up: Sweet Peas

Best Salon

Salon U A haircut and styling at SalonU always leaves your hair feeling soft, silky and healthy and smelling good. This premier Aveda Lifestyle Salon is staffed with Alabama’s most talented top-level artists. The salon also offers a massage therapist, an aesthetician, a manicurist and a make-up artist to accommodate all of your beauty needs. 2824 Linden Avenue, 870-8708 Runner Up: Urban Style Salon

Best Cleaners

Hunter’s Cleaners If Cheers is the bar where everyone knows your name, Hunter’s Cleaners is the cleaners in town where owner Hunter Payne knows everyone by name. Patrons at this father-and-sons operation receive friendly and personal service, professional cleaning, and well, sometimes even free music CDs. 1915 Oxmoor Road, 871-6131 Runner Up: Valley Cleaners

At Home Furnishings, Best Place for Home Decor

Garden Shop of Homewood, Best Garden Shop Savage’s Bakery, Best Bakery

The Homewood Star neighborly news & entertainment for Homewood

The Best of Homewood

| March 2012 |

Homewood Diner, Best Meat and Three

Salon U, Best Salon. Photos by Craig Kleimeyer.

Best Meat and Three

Homewood Diner Even though we love their breakfast, this Homewood favorite won for its Southern lunch and dinner fare. Delicious meat and veggies served in gracious portions are accompanied with a nice and friendly staff. 162 Oxmoor Road, 941-9994 Runner Up: The Paw Paw Patch

Best Place to Exercise

Shades Valley YMCA We already love our Y’s workout classes, fitness equipment, pool and focus on the community, so we can’t wait to see what their renovations-in-progress will reveal. We also think their friendly staff and instructors are part of why they got Homewood’s vote. 3551 Montgomery Highway, 870-9622 Runner Up: Homewood Community Center

Best Happy Hour

Jackson’s Jackson’s outdoor patio seating and indoor loft make it the place to go enjoy a happy hour drink. Their bar offers 30 different beers and 20 wines by the glass, along with a series of classic cocktails. From Monday to Friday, they serve half-priced well and call drinks and beer, and happy hour specials last all evening on Tuesdays. 1831 28th Avenue S, 870-9669 Runner Up: DoDiYos

Five Guys Burgers & Fries, Best Hamburger

Best Place for Girl’s Night

Cocina Superior Nothing fosters a quality girl talk session like Cocina’s house margaritas and delectable chile con queso or guacamole with chips. Their fresh twists on Mexican favorites are delicious enough to encourage you to save room for the main course as well. Plus, you can squeeze in a shopping session at Brookwood if you get out of the restaurant early enough. 587 Brookwood Village, 259-1980 Runner Up: DoDiYos

Best Place for Home Décor

At Home Furnishings Walking in At Home gives us all inspiration for the comforting, stylish feel we all strive for in our own homes. It’s hard to go anywhere on 18th Street without popping in to look at their latest selection of handmade pottery, fun and funky lighting, aromatic candles, flairfilled accessories and classic furniture pieces. 2921 18th Street South, 879-3510 Runner Up: Homewood Antiques & Marketplace

Best Pizza or Italian

New York Pizza With more than 25 years in business, New York Pizza owners still keep their delicious pizza sauce a secret. Although they evolved over the years with the addition of new and creative specialty pizzas, customers are still able to enjoy the staple pizzas from the beginning of time. With a game room for kids, this local Edgewood eatery is the perfect Italian venue for families and patrons of all kinds.1010 Oxmoor Road, 871-4000 Runner Up: GianMarco’s

Best Women’s Store

SOCA This downtown Homewood boutique has huge seasonal sales and is known for their designer jeans, including 7 For All Mankind, Hudson, Citizens of Humanity and other popular brands. They also sell cute Michael Starrs fashion tops, dresses, Minnetonka and Frye boots, sweaters, jewelry, purses and more. 2820 18th Street South, 879-6788 Runner Up: a.k.a. Girl Stuff

Best Bakery

Savages’s Bakery Iced character sugar cookies and pastries like bear claws are Homewood institutions–not to mention how they can decorate a birthday cake like anything or everything you can dream up. Located on 18th Street since the 1950s, Savages is also a favorite lunch spot. Good luck attempting to enter without eating a sweet treat. 2916 18th Street South, 871-4901 Runner Up: Dreamcakes Bakery

The Homewood Star neighborly news & entertainment for Homewood



| March 2012 |

School House

Uncovering a home’s history

Derek, Vanessa, Genevieve and Vivienne Champigny of 212 Peerless Avenue, formerly the R.E. Griffin House c.1924.




Braces for All Ages

Bungalow cottages popular in Homewood’s early years still stand out with their charm in Homewood’s historical neighborhoods. Some homes in the Edgewood community were built in the early 1920s even before Homewood was incorporated as a city in 1924. Derek and Vanessa Champigny are owners of one such a home, a bungalow in Edgewood on Peerless Avenue. After two years of living there, the Champignys were intrigued by its unknown history and set about to discover its past. The Champignys suspected one owner had been a milkman because the shed in the back housed a small one-horse stall, and a horse could have been used for milk deliveries. (The Champignys’ shed was later remodeled to house their modern horsepower in the form of a garage.) In 2009, the family obtained a historical marker through a process initiated

with the Jefferson County Historical Commission. They went online to fill out an application form with the Commission, called the Commission to start the process, and then did the research required through the Jefferson County Library Archives. In the archives, they uncovered a hard copy file from the Probate Office containing 1940 negatives from which the Commission made a 5x7 picture of their home. They also discovered the original owner’s name and occupation per the deed records. After a two month process, including review and follow-up by the Commission, their home was designated as a historical home and recognized with a plaque awarded by the Historical Commission. For information on obtaining a historical marker for your home, contact the Jefferson County Historical Commission at 324-0988 or marker.html.


CONTINUED from page 1

2925 18th Street South • Homewood 205-871-0585 • Monday-Saturday 9:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.

“I found myself flying through the air at 26,000 feet, with my parachute pack in one hand,” he said. Massey kept desperately trying to secure the chute to his harness, but his hands were so numb and he was so weak from lack of oxygen that he couldn’t make the clip fasten. “I remember thinking, ‘Well, I guess this is it,’” he recalls now. He knew that of the airmen sent on bombing missions, one in four didn’t return. But as he plummeted toward earth at more than 150 miles an hour, the air became warmer and thicker. He managed to use both hands to get one clip secured to the harness, but he was still too weak to fasten the second one. “I knew I didn’t have much time left, so I just pulled the ripcord and hoped for the best.” When the partially attached parachute popped open, the jolt was so strong that his boots flew off his feet. He hit the ground, hard. But as his heart finally stopped hammering, he realized he wasn’t seriously injured. With the help of local farmers, Massey found the two other members of his crew, who had somehow survived the plane’s explosion. The remaining seven men had died. “That was the hardest part for me,” Massey said. “We’d been together all through training, and they’d been with me on all 19 missions.” During the 76 days that followed, the survivors moved from place to place behind enemy lines, dodging patrols of German soldiers.

But they had a stroke of good fortune where food was concerned. “The French had learned that the Germans wouldn’t bother children,” Massey said, “so a little girl of about five would carry small amounts of food on her bicycle and leave it on the steps of the abandoned building we were hiding in.” Finally, a member of the Office of Strategic Services (forerunner of the Central Intelligence Agency) discovered the survivors and reunited them with invading American forces. It wasn’t until Massey’s debriefing that he learned of his promotion to captain. The interviewer assured him the paperwork would “catch up” with him, but it never did. He can only speculate, he said, that the process was interrupted when he was listed as having died in the crash of his plane. After the war, Massey sought out families of the lost crewmen. “I sat down with the mothers and fathers of my men and told them what happened on that day,” he said, choking back tears. “It was one of the hardest things I ever had to do.” In 1961, Massey and his surviving crew members returned to France for a reunion with many of the villagers who had sheltered them from the Germans during the war. A group photograph he has of the occasion includes the young girl who brought them food—by then, a striking dark-haired young woman. Massey said he’s proud of his service to America: “War is bad, but the loss of freedom is even worse.”

The Homewood Star | March 2012 |


A dad to playwright

Kyle Bass, 48, is an ordinary guy. He works in marketing at Blue Cross Blue Shield, sings with the quartet Southern Harmony and goes golfing on the weekends. He just happens to be my dad, and somehow in all the free time that comes with raising two kids, he wrote a musical, The Pablo Cruise Incident. The musical profiles a middle-aged banker and what happens after a producer in the music industry purchases Joe’s old reel-to-reel tape deck. “I wanted to talk about a kind of everyday man,” Bass said. The idea was in his head long before it hit paper. He began writing in late 2009, and now, on March 9-11, The Pablo Cruise Incident will debut at the Virginia Samford Theatre. Bass was lead guitar and vocals in a band, Skyline, in high school. Like many kids, I grew up hearing about his high school days and his band. My younger brother and I joked about his “imaginary band” for the majority of our childhood and into our teenage years before he whipped out an old Skyline shirt from the attic. All the stories about playing at high school proms and graduations seemed at least a little more plausible with a T-shirt. Although the musical was inspired by real events (like Joe, Bass also worked as a bag boy at the Piggly Wiggly in his

high school years), Bass insists the musical is embellished in many ways. His musical follows Joe as he tries to unite his old high school band and make it big in the music business. Bass grew up Mayberry-style in Rogersville, Ala., before attending Birmingham-Southern College. He fell into the theatre scene in Birmingham and founded First Stage Players, a theatre company run out of First United Methodist Church in downtown Birmingham. He later founded the Trinity Players out of Trinity United Methodist Church in Homewood. “It’s a great place to live,” Bass said, “it’s cool to see how people from areas like Homewood are investing themselves in the city as a whole.” The show stars Jennifer Price, Beth Kitchin, Jennifer Gamble, Scott Stewart, Andrea Brown-Hubbert, Marietta Lunceford, BJ Underwood and of course, Bass. The Buddy Love Band will also be showcased in The Pablo Cruise Incident. The Pablo Cruise Incident will be performed at the Virginia Samford Theatre March 9 and 10 at 7:30 p.m. and March 11 at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 for adults and $15 for seniors and students. For more information, visit or www.


CONTINUED from page 1 worked with architecture firm Birchfield Penual and Associates LLC to finalize the plans. Until the 1980s, the land at Patriot Park was a golf course. After the city acquired the land, many residents pushed for a walking trail and other amenities that this project will at last provide for the area. “I think it will be a great addition to the space that’s there,” said Marjorie Davis Trimm, vice president of PTO at Hall-Kent Elementary. “We’re really accomplishing what the city wants.” Pavilions with picnic tables will be available to rent for children’s birthday parties, small get-togethers and other events. There will also be new onsite bathrooms and water fountains. This will add to the appeal of playground amenities constructed at the park last year. “I pass by the park everyday, and it’s really great to see kids running to play at the park after school,” Trimm said.

The walking trail will consist of a quarter of a mile loop that will later connect to the Senior Center that was built in 2000. Nine to 10 light poles will provide lighting for an after-sunset walk or jog. In addition, residents in the area will have privacy from the public space. Landscape buffering will separate homes to the west of the park. These additions are only part of the first phase of the park plans. In a later phase, the city hopes to eventually provide a paved path for students to walk and bike to and from Hall-Kent Elementary as a part of the federally funded Safe Routes to School program. “This will be a place closer to home for West Homewood residents,” said architect Chuck Kelly of Kelly Landscape Architects. “We’re really looking forward to the neighbors having a park they can call their own.”

Dawson Memorial 5K 2012 Dawson Memorial Perseverance 5K will be held March 10 at 8 a.m. at Dawson Memorial Baptist Church, 1114 Oxmoor Road. The cost is $15 for the 5K Run/Walk or $10, for the 1 Mile Fun Run. The family maximum fee is $50. An additional $5 is

added to admission if you register after March 3. For more information visit http:// id=2006152.

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6801 Cahaba Valley Road (Hwy 119) 1/4 South of Hwy 280 Along with Bellini’s, Cantina, and Edgars Bakery


Dana Buchman • David Meister • Diesel • Dolce & Gabbana • Donald Pliner


Spring has Sprung at Renaissance

Donald Pliner • Ectetera • Ed Hardy • Ferragamo • Free People J Crew Johnson • Burberry • Carlisle • Chip & Pepper • Christian Louboutin • Citizens of Humanity • Coach • Cole Haan • Cynthia Steefe •

Playwright and Edgewood resident Kyle Bass (at the piano) with the cast of The Pablo Cruise Incident. Photo by Mia Bass.

• Ectetera • Ed Hardy • Ferragamo • Free People J Crew • Joe’s Jeans • Juicy • Kate Spade • Laundry • Lily Pulitzer • Louis Vuitton • Marc Jacobs • Matt & Nat • Michael Kors • Michael Stars • Moth •

7 for Mankind • Anne Klein • Anthropologie • Antik Denim • BCBG • Betsey


| March 2012 |

Restaurant Showcase

Restaurant Showcase

O’Carr’s Restaurant and Catering



2909 18th Street South 879-2196

Monday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Women flock to O’Carr’s in downtown Homewood for their chicken salad and fruit plate. “This is where I tell all my single friends to come to lunch and meet all the pretty girls,” owner Cameron Carr joked. Even so, this popular girly lunch spot has its roots in rock n’ roll. After opening an ice cream parlor/deli on 18th Street in 1975, Cameron and his wife June started catering for Billy Joel, Jimmy Buffet, Dolly Parton, Styx, Little River Band and other various performers on tour in Birmingham. The couple, who had started off working for Kentucky Fried Chicken, often worked from 5 a.m. until 1 a.m. to feed the crew and performers. “I remember Styx wanted green M&M’s so we had to go through packages of M&M’s just to pull out the green ones for the show,” Carr said. “We even catered a requested Thanksgiving dinner for Billy Joel to eat with his crew.” O’Carr’s famous chicken salad also started at a concert. When catering for the City Stages Music Festival VIP, the Carrs thought they’d try chicken salad and fruit to feed around 3,500 people. They had no idea at the time that dish would later make up 45 percent of sales at their restaurant. Today they sell 2,000 pounds of chicken salad each week. It was their City Stages chicken salad invention that made the Carrs’ restaurant business take off. A few years before, the couple had opened their ice cream parlor with the help of a donation of equipment from Jack’s Family Restaurants’ owner Benny LaRusa. By the early 1980s they had

Cameron and June Carr hold their famous chicken salad and fruit plate. Photo by Brooke Boucek.

a successful lunch and catering business. Today the restaurant is open for lunch and caters weddings and corporate and personal parties. June and Cameron both partake in the cooking with their “freelance” cooks that come in about once or twice a week. Along with the loyal customers, most of the staff have been with the Carrs for 20 to 30 years. Cameron calls it his “restaurant

family.” Other than the chicken salad, people rave about the unique cheesecake that‘s served warm. The dessert comes in chocolate, blueberry and strawberry and is lighter and fluffier than the typical cheesecake. Cameron also recommends his favorite menu items, the poached pear salad. After recently franchising O’Carr’s

in Cahaba Heights, Cameron said he is interested in expanding and has gotten several offers throughout the Southeast. “Every year we close from Christmas to New Years and I always worry if anyone is going to be there when we open back up,” said Carr. “But every year there’s always a crowd.”

We Love Homewood


Medical, Pediatric, Surgical and Cosmetic

Laser Hair Removal Laser Resurfacing Laser Scars Tattoo Removal Complexion Blending Chemical Peels Botox Dermal Fillers Ear Piercing Keloid Surgery Mole Removal Leg Vein Treatment Full Time Aesthetician Makeup Artists

Dr. Hartman is the founder and medical director of the Skin Wellness Center of Alabama in Birmingham, Alabama. He is Assistant Clinical Professor of Dermatology at the University of Alabama School of Medicine.

Hunter Payne and sons Winston and Collier.

Dr. Hartman has a special interest in General Dermatology, Dermatologic Surgery, Cosmetic Dermatology and Ethnic Hair and 1 Skin Disorders. He frequently speaks on hair disorders and cosmetic procedures in darker racial skin tones at meetings around the country.

................... o

A Father and Sons Operation Mon-Thur: 7-7 Fri: 7-6:30, Sat: 9-4 1915 Oxmoor Rd. • 871.6131









Business Spotlight

Business Spotlight

D1 Birmingham

1651 Independence Court Suite 211 803-3700

In his words, Dr. Geoffrey Connor enjoys being close to the action. And as a founder of Homewood’s D1 Sports Medicine; a physician at Alabama Orthopedic, Spine and Sports Medicine Associates at St. Vincent’s East; the team doctor for the HHS football team; not to mention a husband and father-of-two; it’s safe to say action is a part of his daily routine. He’s also extensively published, well traveled and fluent in Italian. Connor landed in Homewood by way of his residency and internship at UAB, and more importantly, through meeting his wife, Tammy, who grew up here. They have settled in Hollywood, making his commute to D1 about a mile, and Tammy’s interior design business is just down the road on Oxmoor. “My grocer, dry cleaner, pharmacy, and favorite places to eat are all basically on the same couple of streets,” said Connor. “My wife’s family lives right around the corner. We are pretty much Everybody Loves Raymond come to life.” The D1 sports training facility opened near Brookwood Medical Center in June of 2010 and is co-owned by former Alabama quarterback Brodie Croyle and linebacker DeMeco Ryans along with UAB Olympian Vonetta Flowers. This location is the tenth opening of the nationwide D1 franchise, which was founded by Will Bartholomew in Franklin, Tenn. Inside the 16,000-square-foot facility is an indoor turf field, weight rooms, therapy clinics and athletic performance enrichment services. Athletes of all ages and levels


Geoffrey Connor, MD. Photos courtesy of KC Projects.

receive top-notch training and therapy from a staff of coaches and therapists. Boot camps are offered to give anyone—athlete or novice—an elite training experience. Nutritional advice, character building for the younger generation, sports therapy and even birthday parties round out the D1 experience. Yet, unique to the Homewood D1 location is a specialty sports medicine practice directed by orthopedic surgeon Connor and his staff. The partnership of Connor’s practice extends the D1 performance sports training experience to include orthopedic therapy, surgery and rehabilitation under one roof. “The D1 Birmingham location is really a first of its kind for both D1 and Birmingham in that it offers comprehensive medical and training services all in one location,” said Connor. “We have performance training,



physical therapy, chiropractic care, a nutrition lab, a human performance lab, and of course, comprehensive orthopedic care, all on site—everything an athlete could need to stay at the top of their game right on campus. “Birmingham and Alabama are such football focused places that this location was a no-brainer for them. CEO and founder Will Bartholomew saw a growing need for high-quality training programs and facilities geared toward athletes that not only want to stay fit but want to stay at a very competitive level athletically, especially during off-seasons when school facilities may not be available or when weather doesn’t permit outdoor training.” Clearly Connor feels at ease on the sidelines of any sporting event, especially Homewood High School’s football games. “I’ve spent about seven or eight years in various roles of being the ‘Team Doc’ for HHS,” he said. “My early days on the sidelines were in the ‘glory years’ before the transition to 6A. That has resulted in a lot of difficult times, I think, for such a small school. It should be nice to see how they transition back to 5A, where I think the school really belongs size-wise.”

| March 2012 |




A high school football player himself, Connor fondly recalls his own team docs, who invariably prescribed either “putting some ice on” or “rubbing some dirt on” every injury. “From an orthopedic and sports medicine standpoint, there have been vast improvements from those days,” he said. Perhaps more rewarding than his role at the high school is seeing his players go on to play college and pro ball. “Interestingly, we are seeing as patients a large number of former Homewood athletes who have gone on to high-level Division I scholarships and the professional ranks,” Connor said. “That is probably based on a number of factors, our location and past relationship with HHS, as well as the fact that a number of those guys are now training at D1 in the off-season.” Connor’s attraction to orthopedics and sports medicine, and subsequently the D1 facility, came naturally. In addition to enjoying an action-packed lifestyle, at the end of the day, it’s “the combination of working with athletes and getting to solve problems in a very concrete way,” that keeps this physician on the cutting edge of sports medicine.

Connor at work at the D1 facility on Highway 31.


Jacqueline Dillon DeMarco, PhD Clinical Psychologist

Homewood Resident & Band Parent

Individual and Couple Therapy (Adults ages 18+)

SPECIALTIES: ● ● ● ● ● ●

Mood Disorders Grief Trauma Anxiety Stress Management Relationship Issues

500 Office Park Drive • Suite 216 • Mountain Brook, AL 35233

(205) 718-5433


| March 2012 | Homewood Parks and Recreation


Homewood Community Center Activities Yoga with Kelly Creel!

Kid’s Class: Cost: $20 per month (4-5 classes per month). Class offerings: Tuesday afternoons, 3:30 - 4:15pm. For more information please email Kelly Creel at or call 529-9360


ZUMBA is the new craze sweeping America! It is Latin inspired aerobic dance and every class feels like a party. ZUMBA is for all ages, and both sexes! You can burn 500 to 1000 calories in one fun hour! Homewood Community Center now has two instructors offering classes: Instructor: Camille Scruggs Contact Info: 256-452-2500 or Days & Times: Homewood Community Center Auditorium Tuesday 5:30-6:30pm Thursday 5:30-6:30pm Saturday 9:00-10:00am (No Class March 3rd)


Classes will be held on Mondays and Wednesdays at the Homewood Community Center from 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm in the Auditorium. Monthly tuition is $55 - $65. Classes are for children and teenagers ages 4 and up. For more information please contact Master Joe at 966-4244

Young Rembrandts

Draw amazing things with Young Rembrandts!

We believe that drawing is a skill that can, and should be learned by all children. Young Rembrandts classes are both fun and educational, and our step-by-step curriculum is developed to teach fundamental art skills in a nurturing environment that gives children an academic advantage. Our weekly classes are for boys and girls 5 to 12 years of age. Class will be held at the Homewood Community Center. Enroll anytime—all new lessons each session and each year. Please contact Chris Roberson at 943-1923 for more information or to register.


Burn up to 600 calories in one fun and powerfully effective, 60-minute total body workout. Every Jazzercise group fitness class combines dance-based cardio with strength training and stretching to sculpt, tone and lengthen muscles for maximum fat burn. Choreographed to today’s hottest music, Jazzercise is a fusion of jazz dance, resistance training, Pilates, yoga, hip-hop, and kickboxing. Start dancing yourself fit and change the shape of your body today! All ages, levels and sizes welcome. Go to: for class information or call 1-800-FIT-IS-IT Call your Homewood class owner, Beth Gilbert at 205-9669893 for class days and times.

Firm Body Bootcamps

Firm Body Bootcamps is an intense fitness program designed to help you lose body fat and tone. Every time you come it’s a different workout so you never get bored.


Second Season Wrestling 2012

Ages: 2nd thru 11th grades; younger participants allowed with coaching staff permission only. Registration: Homewood Community Center – Prior to Friday, February 24, 2012. There will be no on-site registration at the first practice Program Fee: $100 Practice Begins: Thursday, March 1, 2012 at 5:45pm Practice Location: Cahaba Heights Elementary School (Vestavia Hills, Alabama) Practice Days & Times: Mondays, Tuesdays & Thursdays: 5:45-7:15pm / Sunday 1:30-3:00pm. Each participate is allowed two practice days per week For more information contact: Linda Sellers at 332-6706 (or)

Spring Adult Softball – Coed and Men

An organizational meeting for the 2012 Spring Adult Softball League will be held on Wednesday, March 7th at 7:00 p.m. at the Homewood Community Center in Room 100. All participants must be 19 years or older. If you are interested

Kindermusik with Kelly Alligood

Kindermusik is the best choice in programs for you and your child. As the world’s recognized leader in early childhood music and movement, Kindermusik offers a musical learning adventure that will impact your child now and for years to come! This is accomplished through our extraordinary classroom experience and unsurpassed At Home materials. There’s simply no better way to foster your child’s love of music and love of learning. Classes are available for ages 0 to 5 years. Classes are held January through May and August through December. Enroll now! Call me at 205-552-6129 or email me at for more information. You may also visit my website at http://kellyalligood. for more information or to enroll

Belly Dancing with Aziza

Homewood Community Center Auditorium Class fee: $60 cash only For more information contact Aziza at 879-0701 or Learn the ancient art of Middle Eastern belly dance (classic Egyptian style) with Aziza, award winning dancer, with 36 years of experience in performance and instruction. Women only, ages 13 and up are welcomed in class with no dance experience necessary to enroll. Each session is 5-weeks long on Tuesday night for beginners, Wednesday night for intermediates and Thursday night for advanced. Times are 7:00-8:30pm for beginners and 7:00-8:45pm for intermediates and advanced. Beginners start with the basic steps, isolations and shimmies and progress to the intermediate class where you will learn to put the dance together with more advanced steps and combinations plus dancing with the veil; advanced classes include performing with zills, cane, veil with more advanced and longer performances. The classes are for anyone who wants to dance for fun and fitness, as well as those who wish to perform. Aziza has trained dancers to perform for many events in the Southeastern area in addition to dancers who perform regularly at Ali Baba Persian Restaurant in Hoover.

Head Over Heels Gymnastics!

Gymnastics promotes coordination, flexibility and balance. We teach gymnastics at your child’s individual level in a fun, creative and positive environment, therefore developing self-confidence, a love for fitness and a sense of achievement. Skills are taught on the Swing Bar, Balance Beam, Trampoline, Springboard, Tumbling apparatus, and other fun props! Dates: 3rd session: March 8 – May 3rd (no class March 19-23) Day & Times: Thursdays: 3:30 – 4:15 pm for Ages 3-5 4:15 - 5:00 pm for Ages 6 & up Fee: $80.00 for Homewood residents, $85.00 for non-residents

in participating in one of these leagues at Homewood Park you must attend this meeting and have your registration money at this time. Resident teams only may register prior to the organizational meeting beginning on February 20th. Games will be played at West Homewood Park fields. Coed will play Mondays or Thursdays, men will play Tuesdays or Wednesdays. Fees will be $400 for all teams. The minimum number of teams is 7, the maximum is 9. Fee includes officials, trophies and tournament play. Play begins in April. For information about upcoming seasons contact Linda Sellers: (205) 332-6706 (or)

Tennis with Dave Luesse

Private and Group Lessons Kids USTA Team Tennis Kids Group Clinic and Rally Ball Adult Singles Park League Adult Mixed Doubles Park League Adult Tournaments (Singles, Doubles & Mixed) Novice Future Stars Tennis Circuit 2011 For more information on any of these programs or events, please contact Dave Luesse 967-5875 or 901-9243

Homewood Senior Center

Dance Lessons: West Coast Swing

Jack McNair has been dancing since 1987. He has been a dance instructor for Fred Astaire (Fort Walton Beach, FL) and has competed all over the United States in Ballroom, Country Western, and Swing. Renee Johnson has been dancing since 2002. She competed in Ballroom and Swing with Fred Astaire and Country Western and Swing in UCWDC (United Country Western Dance Council). Renee and Jack met in 2005 and are best known for their West Coast Swing and Cha-cha. They look forward to teaching Beginning West Coast on Tuesday nights at Homewood Senior Center beginning March 6th. Practice @ 6:15 P.M. / Lesson @ 6:30 – 7:30 P.M. $7/Class.

Tai Chi for Older Adults

Taught by Galina Waites, certified by Arthritis Foundation. Thursdays (ongoing) @ 1:45pm. Free to Senior Center members. $5 for non-members

Zumba Fitness

Taught by Jerri Haslem. Open to general public, any age adult. Thursdays (ongoing) @ 6:00pm. $5 payable to instructor. For questions, call Jerri @ (205) 542-5391.

Senior Tennis Group for Women

@ Homewood Senior Center This is not a class. No instructors will be present to teach the game. You must have some knowledge of tennis at the beginner or intermediate level. This will be a group that will come together for the love of tennis to play informally, to plan together the nature of the group and which days to play and reserve courts. If you love tennis but do not want the pressure of competition, please join us for fun, a good workout and social time. You must be a member of the Homewood Senior Center. A planning meeting will be held at the Senior Center on a date yet to be determined. For more information and meeting date, please call Nabella Shunnarah at 205-862-3600.

City Wide Events City Wide Easter Egg Hunt

Site: Homewood Central Park Date: Saturday March 31, 2012 Egg Hunt Begins: 11:00am Games: 10:00am – 1:00pm Ages: 1 – 12 years The hunt begins promptly at 11am SHARP. Children will be divided into age appropriate groups including a special needs group. Each participant should bring their own Easter basket or bucket. The Easter Bunny will be available for pictures at an additional charge. For additional information contact Rosie Kelly @ 332-6182 or 871-7304

2012 Summer Camp & AfterCare

Camp Dates: June 4th – July 27th / Ages: 4-12 Returning 2011 Summer Campers: Return registration form and payment to Homewood Community Center Main Office from April 9th – April 20th, 2012. 8:00am-5:30pm; Monday - Friday. Homewood Residents not enlisted in Summer Camp 2011: Registration forms must be mailed in with payment. Cannot be postmarked before April 22, 2012 Non-Homewood Residents: Registration forms must be mailed in with payment. Cannot be postmarked before April 29, 2012 -Mail in registration forms MAY NOT be brought into Park Office in a stamped envelope. They must be received via mail carrier and postmarked with the appropriate date. -Mail in registrations must contain payment in full for Summer Camp and AfterCare (if applicable) should be included via check or money order to HOMEWOOD PARK. Should payment not be included, registration will be deemed incomplete and not accepted for consideration. Camp Fee: (9:00am – 2:00pm) $250 for Homewood Residents; $25 discount per additional child, $500 for Non-Homewood Residents; no additional child discount AfterCare Fee: (2:00pm – 5:30pm) Limited to first 60 campers registered. Must be enrolled in Summer Camp to attend AfterCare $200 for Homewood Residents; no additional child discount $400 for Non-Homewood Residents; no additional child discount Registration forms can be picked up at the Community Center Main Office beginning April 2nd.


Homewood Sports | March 2012 |

Homewood Sports

Youth Cheer registration


National Signing Day

HYC is gearing up for registration for the 2012 season beginning mid April. For more info visit www. Front row: Hannah Gibson, Hayden Brogdon, Grace Turner, Hannah Crosswy, Mallie Claire Alfano, and Ingram Zuber. Second row: Polly Forrestall, Maggie Heath, Chloe Chatham, Koby Mitchell, and Katie Foster. Photo by Brooke Gibson.

HHS Basketball

Homewood’s Brandon Watson shoots for 2 against the Leeds basketball team.

Number 22 Michael Lummis plays on offense against the Mountain Brook Spartans.

We Now Carry Lampshades Bring your lamp in for a new look!

1829 29 Ave. South • Homewood • 870-8110 th

Find us on

& on

Stephen Baggett signed a baseball scholarship with Shelton State Community College on National Signing Day. Photo by Merrick Wilson.

Red Balloon Sale Saturday March 31st! antiques, furniture, artwork, gifts, children’s items, custom nursery bedding, area rugs, jewelry, home accessories, lamps, monogramming, upholstery service, custom slip covers, and so much more!!!

930 Oxmoor Road (205)414-9945


| March 2012 |

School House


James Spann visits Edgewood


Musical Instruments in great variety BUY-SELL-TRADE-REPAIR

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Inventory updated Daily|205.879.4868|

State Superintendent awards Two Homewood students received awards in the State Superintendent‘s Visual Arts Show. Homewood Middle School student Ayla McCary placed first place in her division, and Homewood High School student Paige Williams received Honorable Mention in her division. Both students placed in the photography or computergenerated work category.

Paige Williams

ABC 33/40 Meteorologist James Spann visited Edgewood Elementary School third graders to talk about science. He selected John Kelly Hawkins, pictured between Allen Isenhower and Lynn Irvine, to help him make a video that appeared that night during his weather update segment.

HHS Show Choir wins big

Ayla McCary’s winning piece

100th Day of School

The Network Show Choir at Homewood High School came home with many awards in the South Jones Invitational in Laurel, Miss. The Network earned first place in the Large Mixed Division, Best Show Design, Best Choreography, Best Vocals, and Grand Champion of the entire event. The girls show choir, Legacy, also won first runner up in the Women’s Division.

Spelling Bee Winners

To celebrate the 100th Day of School, Shades Cahaba Elementary School first graders dressed up like someone who is 100 years old! The day also went hand in hand with first grade curriculum; one of the math learning targets for first grade is for students to count and represent numbers up to 120 in various ways.

Edgewood artist wins state flag contest Hunter Callaway, sixth grader at Homewood Middle School, won the Homewood City Schools District Spelling Bee. Allain Rapadas, fifth grader at Hall-Kent, was the runner up.

YAM state flag contest winner by Maddy Grabarczyk

Edgewood Elementary School fourth grader Maddy Grabarczyk won the Youth Art Month (YAM) state flag design contest, School Flags Across the U.S…Flying High. Maddy will receive a gift certificate from Sargent Art. YAM is an annual observance each March to emphasize the value of art and

art education for all children. The theme for the annual student flag design contest this year was was “Art Shapes the World.” Students used graphic design to create artwork that not only represents art but also symbolizes our state. Judges select an elementary, middle, and high school winner from entries across Alabama.

Shades Cahaba Elementary School’s winner was third grader Madhav Praveen in Emily Wallace’s class. His winning word was “municipal.”

Edgewood Elementary School’s winner was Sharif Sakawi from Liz Walker’s fifth grade class.

School House

Miss Heritage 2012

| March 2012 |



Jody Brant

Pam Smith

Joel Brant

Office: 205-942-9696 Cell: 205-305-4348

Office: 800-240-5626 Cell: 256-572-2530

Office: 256-891-0681 Cell: 205-613-7848

NMLS 189545

NMLS 189538

NMLS 189546


This program allows up to 95% LTV for qualified borrowers

Homewood High School’s Elizabeth Hale was named Miss Heritage 2012.

HMS Team Robot in regionals Homewood Middle School’s Team Robot moved on to compete in the regional competition in the South’s BEST Regional Competition for the third time in four years. They won third place in T-shirt design and a third place Founder’s Award for Most

Creative Robot Design. Coach Steve Sills brought his Homewood Men Striving for Success group and other students to the event to help cheer on the team, and having fans at the competition made the day even more fun.

HMS students Skype with UCP

• FHA (HUD) 96.5/LOANS UP TO $271,050

This program allows all funds to close to come in the form of a gift or secured loan. Most flexible program on credit and debt ratios.

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100% Loans for Moderate Income.



Homewood Middle School students in Elizabeth Stewart’s class were able to spread holiday cheer without leaving their classroom. The class used Skype, a service that allows video calls over the Internet, to visit with the United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) of Greater Birmingham. The students sang carols and performed songs with hand bells. The UCP music teacher played the guitar, and the students and the UCP members were able to sing and dance together.

HCS Geography Bee Homewood City Schools’ fourth through eighth grade students participated in the school level Geography Bee. The students who won their school’s bee went on to take a written test. This contest, in

which thousands of schools across the country participate, is designed to not only spark student interest in the subject but also to increase public awareness about the importance of geography.

en han c in g lif e with plan ts

S pring p lant S ale M ore t han 100,000


Scan the tag for a video about the event.

Get the free mobile app at

http:/ /

New for 2012

The Gardens’ Junior Board

Shades Cahaba Elementary School winner Erik Schablow and runner up Katherine Goodrich with Principal Sue Grogan and Assistant Principal John Lowry


Edgewood Elementary winner Keefer Boone and runner up Noah Gentry

Wine/Beer, Food & Live Music

Former Mazer’s on Greensprings in Homewood, AL

Friday, April 13 6 - 8 p.m.

p r e v i e w p a r t y : April 12 | 5 - 6:30 p.m. M e M b e r S -o n l y S a l e : April 12 | 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.

205.414.3950 bb ga r d e n s.or g Hall-Kent Elementary School winner Kyle Hsu and runner-up Wilson McCraw

Homewood Middle School winner Nick Dutton, second place Faulkner Williams and third place Evan Myers

public plant Sale Friday, April 13 | 9 - 5 p.m. Saturday, April 14 | 9 - 5 p.m. Sunday, April 15 | 11 - 3 p.m.


| March 2012 |

Homewood Events 3/1 – Spring Fashion Show. a.k.a. Girl Stuff, 2906 18th Street South. Seats available at 5 p.m. Show starts at 6 p.m. The 10th annual event is a one-day sale with door prizes and the latest spring style. More information: 3/3 – Chili Cook-off Presented by Regions Bank. 10:30 a.m.-3p.m. Admission: $10, in advance; $15, at gate; Free, children 12 and under. 1616 Oxmoor Road. www. 3/3 – Casino Night. This event will raise money for the nonprofit programs of Assistance League of Birmingham. More information: 870-5555. 3/6 –Homewood Citizens Police Academy. Discover what it takes to be a Homewood Police Officer during this in-depth and hands-on course. Taught by Homewood PD training staff, you’ll get the inside story from the officers themselves and learn the techniques they use every day. More information: 332-6864 or email greg.

3/10 – 2012 Dawson Memorial Perseverance 5K. 8 a.m. Dawson Memorial Baptist Church, 1114 Oxmoor Road. Admission: $15, 5K Run/Walk; $10, 1 Mile Fun Run; $50, Family Maximum Fee. An additional $5 is added to admission if you register after March 3. More information: http://active. com/event_detail.cfm?event_id=2006152. 3/12, 3/26 – Homewood Praying Moms “Prayer Express.” Hart and Soul. 8 a.m.8:30 a.m. Meets the 1st, 2nd, and 4th Mondays of the month. Every 2nd and 4th Monday meets at Hart and Soul. Pray for your children, their teachers, and schools. More information: site/prayingmomsofhomewood/ 3/13- Homewood City Schools Foundation Showcase. 6-8 p.m. Homewood Middle School. More info: www. 3/17 – St. Patrick’s Day 5K. 8 a.m.-12

Calendar of Events p.m. Homewood Central Park. 5k race with winners’ awards and children’s zone complete with moonbounce, face painting, and balloons. 100 percent of proceeds will go to meet the medical needs of Haiti’s children. Register online via Admission: $15. More information: info@ 3/26 – Alabama Travelers. Homewood Senior Center. 11 a.m. entertainment; lunch at 12 p.m. Entertainment by this bluegrass band and lunch by Vestavia Town Village and Admission: $6 at the door. Must register on the Friday prior to the event. More information: 332-6500. 3/29 – Melinda Rainey Thompson – I’ve Had It Up to Here with Teenagers. Alabama Booksmith. 2626 19th Place South, Birmingham. 4 p.m. Book purchasing and signing event. More information: 870-4242. 3/31 – City Wide Easter Egg Hunt. Homewood Central Park. Egg hunt, 11 a.m.; Games, 10 a.m.-1p.m. Ages: 1-12 years. Children will be divided into age appropriate groups including a special needs group. More information: 332-6182 or 871-7304.

Homewood Library Children’s Department Tuesdays & Wednesdays – Story Time. 10:30 a.m. All ages welcome. 3/1, 3/15 – Mommy & Me. 10:30 a.m. 3/2, 3/9, 3/16 – Leaps & Bounds. 10:30 a.m. 30 months to 4 year olds with adult. Registration required. Register starting on 2/27 for 3/2. More information: 332-6619. 3/5 – Wii Play for Kids. 3:30 p.m. 3rd-5th grade. 3/19 – Monday Movie. 3:30 p.m. 3/22 – Spring Break Bounce. 10:30 a.m. 3/24 – Cartoons & Cereal. 9:30 a.m.- 11:30 a.m. Other Events

Your Friends Your Neighbors Your Community

3/3, 3/31 – Get Hooked. 2 p.m. Learn the basics of the fun craft of crocheting. The library will provide light refreshments and instruction. Ages 10 toAdult. 3/7- The Hunger Games Challenge. 4 p.m. Enjoy a feast worthy of Panem and design outfits for your District before competing in the Hunger Games. Only one will survive to win tickets to the movie. Grades 6-12. No registration required. 3/13 – Oxmoor Page Turners Book Group. Lucretia M. Somers Boardroom. 6:30 p.m.8 p.m. The group will discuss Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin. More information: 332-6601. 3/28- Bottle Spinners. 4 p.m. Come by after school to make a cool wind spinner from recycled soda bottles. All supplies and snacks will be provided. Grades 6-12 only.

Music & Arts 3/9 - TAO: The Art of the Drum. Alys Robinson Stephens Performing Arts Center. 8 p.m. Admission: $28-$50; $20, students. More information: 975-ARTS. 3/9-3/11 - The Pablo Cruise Incident. Virginia Samford Theatre. Friday and Saturday, 7:30 p.m.; Sunday, 2:30 p.m. Admission: $20, Adults; $15, Students and Seniors. More information: 251-1206. 3/9-3/11 - Birmingham Ballet Presents: Sleeping Beauty. BJCC. 3/9 at 10 a.m. 3/10 at 2 and 7:30 p.m. 3/11 at 2 p.m. Admission: $25-$38, Adults, $17.50-$27.50. More information: 3/10, 3/17 - BCT Presents: The Little Engine That Could. BJCC. More information: 3/10 - Freestyle Motocross. BJCC. 7:30 p.m. Admission: $16-20. More information: 3/16, 3/18 - Opera Birmingham Presents: Carmen. Samford University’s Wright Center Concert Hall. Mar. 16, 7:30 p.m.; Mar.18, 2:30 p.m. Admission: $35- $90. More

information: 322-6737 or http://www. 3/17 - Disney Presents: Phineas and Ferb. BJCC. 3 and 6 p.m. Admission: $16-$53. More information: 3/27Peking Acrobats. Samford University’s Wright Center Concert Hall. 7:30 p.m. Admission: $15- $33. More information: 726-2853 or www.samford. edu/wrightcenter. 3/30. Ballet Hispanico. Samford University’s Wright Center Concert Hall. 7:30 p.m. Admission: $18- $43. More information: 726-2853 or www.samford. edu/wrightcenter.

Sports 3/16 – Samford baseball v. Furman. 6 p.m. Admission: $5 adults, $3 children. More information: 3/20 – Samford softball v. Memphis. 5 p.m. Admission: $5 adults, $3 children. More information: 3/27 – Samford baseball v. Auburn. 6 p.m. Admission: $5 adults, $3 children. More information:

Special Events 3/14 – Pi Day. McWane Science Center. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Admission: included in cost; free, members. More information: www. 3/31 - Rumpshaker 5k. Sloss Furnaces. 5k, 8 a.m.; 1 Mile Fun Run, 9 a.m. Funds raised will go to educate and raise awareness of colon cancer throughout the community. Registration opens at 6 a.m. More information: 933-8911. 3/31 – Free Tennis Festival. Birmingham Southern Tennis Complex. 9 a.m.-11:30 a.m. Open to children of all ages 10 and under. Admission: Free. More information: sarah.

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The Homewood Star

Homewood Chamber Spotlight Janet Skotnicki, Volunteer

Janet, what brought you to volunteer at our Chamber and what are some of your responsibilities? I volunteer at the Chamber with my balance assistance service dog, Splash, a Great Dane, on Wednesdays from about 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. I am a registered nurse and worked in the care of cardiac patients at UAB for many years, most recently in the offices of the Interventional Cardiology physicians where I had contact with patients by telephone. That job was parttime and ideal for me given that I have a neurological disorder that affects my balance and prevents me from performing bedside care. However, the position was eliminated in March 2010, not long after I was able to get Splash and obtain approval to use him at work. As I am currently seeking a part-time nursing position, I decided to see if I could also help out at the Chamber during my job search. I do whatever needs to be done in the office and answer the phone when Tricia and Caroline are occupied. I help organize the monthly luncheons and update the member files with new information, and I’ll also be helping out with upcoming chamber events. What has been your favorite thing so far about volunteering for the Chamber? For six years I volunteered with the local animal-assisted therapy group, Hand-in-Paw, and visited hospitals and nursing homes with my miniature schnauzer, Annabelle, who was Delta Society-registered. What I learned from that experience is with volunteer work you usually get more out of it than you give, and that’s what I’ve experienced so far in volunteering with the Chamber. I’ve enjoyed meeting new people, making new friends and learning more about all the great things going on in Homewood. Everyone at the library, where the Chamber office is located, has been so welcoming to me and Splash. Tell us about Splash and how the two of you interact daily. Splash is a 4-year-old, 125-pound harlequin (spotted) Great Dane that we adopted from the Greater Birmingham Humane Society a little over two years ago. Waiting lists for service dogs can be very long and because a balance assistant

| March 2012 |

I DID IT IN 90 DAYS! “I lost 82lbs. & 8 off my waist.” -Bryon Coleman

Doctor Prescribed Medical Weight Loss Janet Skotnicki with her service dog, Splash . Photo courtesy Janet Skotnicki. service dog doesn’t need to learn the long list of skills that a seeing eye dog or other service dog needs to know, we were looking for a mature, large breed dog with a good temperament that could be trained. We were lucky to find Splash. We worked with a local dog trainer to teach him what he needed to know to be a service dog, and we have passed the training standard set by the International Association of Assistance Dog Partners. Splash helps me maintain my balance when I walk by wearing a harness with a handle I can hold onto and really helps me be free to go where I please. Great Danes were bred to be working dogs and Splash gets very excited whenever he knows it’s “time to work.” What is your favorite thing about Homewood? I love Homewood because it is a very friendly and livable city where you get to know your neighbors and most of the things you want aren’t very far away from home. My husband and I enjoy Central Park and the Greenway, and Lakeshore Foundation, a Paralympic training facility that serves as a fitness club for persons over 55, the disabled, or persons with chronic illnesses. It is located just off of Highway 31 and Lakeshore Drive.



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CONTINUED from page 1 is mostly industrial, and residents do not need to worry too much about traffic changes. Homewood City Council has signed a contract with Gonzalez Strength and Associates (GSA) for the work. Hawkins has been working with Fred Cobb of the MPO technical committee and the city council on the project since 2008. At the time, the funding for the project was in jeopardy. In 2008, Hawkins found out that the city had the money for the Oxmoor Road and Shades Creek Greenways projects but might lose it. The Regional Planning Commission saved the nearly $13 million of federal funding, and City Council passed Hawkins’ resolution authorizing the 20 percent match money that the City of Homewood would need for the federal grant. In February 2010, City Council presented schematic designs for the project at

a public meeting at Hamburger Heaven, and the meeting resulted in overwhelming public support. After the meeting, Hawkins and Moody spoke with the mayor and City Council and were met with unanimous support for the project. Since then, federal funding for the project has been earmarked, and the plan has been included in the new Transportation Improvement Plan. The Transportation Improvement Plan also includes the extension of the Shades Creek Greenway along Lakeshore Drive, funded by the other $8 million from the $13 million in federal funding. Hawkins said the design work and environmental clearance should take around a year. After completion, the greenway will be extended behind Wildwood to West Homewood Park, and you will be able to walk, run or bike from Colonial Brookwood Village to West Homewood Park.

Peking Acrobats coming to Samford Peking Acrobats are coming to Samford University’s Wright Center Concert Hall on March 27 at 7:30 p.m. Since 1958, this elite group has toured the world presenting their ancient folk art, acrobatics. The gymnasts, jugglers, cyclists


and tumblers are carefully selected from the finest acrobat schools in China. Admission is $15- $33. For more information, call 726-2853 or visit www.

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| March 2012 |

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The Homewood Star March 2012  

Community News, sports, and entertainment for Homewood, Alabama

The Homewood Star March 2012  

Community News, sports, and entertainment for Homewood, Alabama