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Neighborly news & entertainment for Hoover

Friday night


August 2013 • 1

Volume 1 | Issue 11 | August 2013

Board reconsidering?

Hoover Schools’ decision to stop bus service topic of Aug. 8 public hearing By MARIENNE THOMAS OGLE Special to Hoover Sun

Bucs, Jags set sights on 2013-2014 state title Can the Buccaneers repeat last season’s remarkable success? Will new Spain Park Head Coach Shawn Raney lead his Jaguars to be a contender in 6A? Hoover Sun takes a look at these questions and more with our Season Previews inside this issue.

Sports page 18

Traffic delays ALDOT’s plan to construct additional lanes on U.S. 31 in front of the Riverchase Galleria has been delayed until 2014. Find out why, as well as a new projected construction schedule and completion dates inside.

City page 4

INSIDE Sponsors ........... 2 City ..................... 4 Business ............ 6 Food ................... 9

Community ...... 10 School House .. 22 Sports ............... 23 Calendar ........... 26

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A large number of Hoover heads-ofhousehold have hope again. The Hoover City Board of Education will hold a public forum Aug. 8 to gain input and answer questions about its recent decision to discontinue general student bus service beginning with the 2014-2015 school year. The forum will take place at 7 p.m. at the Spain Park High School theatre. “This is just what we’ve been hoping for,” Hoover parent Felicia Brewer said when she learned of the meeting. The Board voted 4-1 in July to discontinue general student bus service in order to cut costs, leaving transport of regular school bus riders to parents. While busing for special needs students and special events would continue, the transportation cut would save the system about $2.5 million a year. Children affected would make up an average of about 46 percent or 6,300 of the system enrollment of about 13,700 students.

See BUSES | page 25

Four in the family By REBECCA WALDEN

HCS Department of Transportation Bus Fleet: 160 Staff: 181 Daily Student Transports: 5,764 Daily Bus Mileage (Total): 2,700 Photo/information courtesy of Hoover City Schools

Trace Crossings family shares sports legacy across generations

outstanding player, they were just a bunch of average Milton White Jr.’s sons students and average skill always had a special affinity athletes who came together for his 1977 Berry High School under Finley and were able State Championship football. to succeed as one unit,” said Not only that, they were White’s eldest son, Nathan. fascinated by his ring. “That’s why they think It weighed his hand down, that season was so special. day-in and day-out as he Was our dad athletic? Sure, raised his family. But the but was he some 6-foot, unmistakable point of pride 250-pound machine? No. rarely left his finger. To capture that state title, Milton, an ophthalmologist the team definitely listened and devoted family man, lost to coaches and fulfilled their his battle with Type 1 Diabetes roles as players.” in 2011 at age 48. At that point, The story is poignant for his children still hadn’t lost Nathan, his twin brother their fascination. And now, it’s Ryan and their youngest The White brothers, Nathan, Ryan and Tripp, each have a state championas much a part of his legacy as brother Tripp – particularly ship ring, representing the second generation of athletic excellence in Hoover sports programs. In the center is their father’s winning game ball from the 1977 it is theirs. due to Milton’s untimely What started with one ring has 4A Berry High School State Football Championship. Photo by Rebecca Walden. death. And their father’s multiplied, and the White family championship ring and has made an indelible mark on game ball, which sports to the other football players on the to capture the 4A (Berry’s division sports all across Hoover. Berry High Buccaneers in 1977. But at the time) state title over Walker signatures from Coach Finley and Milton was a native of Laurel, under Coach Bob Finley, Milton High School 21-0, the team’s fifth 40-something fellow players on that Miss. By many accounts, he was helped his team complete a 13-1 shutout of the season. an average athlete when compared football season. The team went on See FAMILY | page 25 “There wasn’t just one strong

2 • August 2013

Hoover Sun

About Us Photo of the Month

Support our Community Partners Alabama Allergy & Asthma Center (11) Alabama Power (4) Bariatrics of Alabama (23) Bedzzz Express (28) Brookwood Medical Center (8) California Closets (13) Carl’s Comfort Shoes (18)

The Spain Park High School Varsity Cheerleaders came home with many awards from the UCA Cheer Camp in Panama City this summer. The squad placed first in Cheer and Overall categories. Lauren Burks and Carlie Nall were named All-American and received UCA staff bids.

Eco Three (25) Geico Insurance (5) Hendrick Hoover Auto Mall (17, 21)

Editor’s Note By Rebecca Walden Though the technology surrounding its Say only what you mean. Avoid using the title has long been outpaced, You’ve Got word to speak against yourself or gossip Mail remains one of my all-time favorite about others. Use the power of your word in movies. A particular line from Joe Fox, the direction of truth and love. aptly played by Tom Hanks, comes to my Don’t take anything personally. mind each autumn: Nothing others do is because of you. What “Don’t you love New York in the fall? others say and do is a projection of their It makes me wanna buy school supplies. own dreams. When you are immune to the I would send you a bouquet of newly opinions and actions of others, you won’t be sharpened pencils if I knew your name and the victim of needless suffering. address.” Don’t make assumptions. Find the Oh the genius of Nora Ephron. Growing courage to ask questions and to express Walden up, I didn’t think anyone could possibly what you really want. Communicate enjoy the excitement of new school with others as clearly as you can to avoid supplies as much as I did. There was just something so misunderstandings, sadness and drama. thrilling about the promise of a clean notebook never Always do your best. Your best is going to change jotted in, a pen not yet leaking ink, and so on. from moment to moment; it will be different when you Of course I know why I felt that way. In every sense, are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, brand new school supplies represented a clean slate, a simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, new year and the promise that all things were possible. self-abuse and regret. But the slate never stayed clean for long. After awhile, In the almost 20 years since I graduated high school, capless pens, dog-eared notebooks and misplaced The Four Agreements have become only more significant homework assignments would line the bottom of my to me. In this juxtaposed world, where the climate is both red monogrammed JanSport. And the high regard I’d collegial and competitive, these words (when I remember once held for those items in their new-from-WalMart to follow them) remind me to live in purpose and peace. condition quickly diminished. I hope they can do the same for you as we enter this new As parents, grandparents, coaches and caregivers to school year. the children in our lives, we certainly have more fortitude August is significant to so many of us who call Hoover than spiral bound notebooks and cheaply made writing home. The long-standing reputation of our schools is instruments. The start of this new school year is indeed a what has drawn, and kept, many of us here. Just as we clean slate, but it’s up to us to keep it that way. expect excellence from our school administration, our When helping the school-age child/children in your faculty and our students, let’s also expect and model that life navigate this new year, think about the excitement for each other. you once felt in that stage of your life. Brace yourself Now I’m off to buy my bouquet of newly and your student for the ups and downs these next nine sharpened pencils. months are likely to bring by remembering The Four Agreements, from the book by the same name and written See you in the supply aisle! by Don Miguel Ruiz. I received a copy of it in high school from my lifelong friend, Meg Lawrence Karchner. A summary of The Four Agreements is as follows: Be impeccable with your word. Speak with integrity. Rebecca

Publisher : Executive Editor : Creative Director : Editor : Managing Editor : Advertising Manager : Sales and Distribution :

Contact Information: Hoover Sun #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

Dan Starnes Jeff Thompson Keith McCoy Rebecca Walden Madoline Markham Matthew Allen Rhonda Smith Warren Caldwell Michelle Salem Haynes Keith Richardson Contributing Writers: Marienne Thomas Ogle Interns : Caroline Drew Will Hightower Chandler Jones Intisar Seraaj-Sabree Published by : Hoover Sun LLC

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editorial or graphic content without prior permission is prohibited. The Hoover Sun is designed to inform the Hoover community of area school, family and community events. Information in the Hoover Sun is gathered from sources considered reliable but the accuracy cannot be guaranteed. All articles/photos submitted become the property of the Hoover Sun. 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) 3131780 or by email.

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August 2013 • 3

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4 • August 2013

Hoover Sun

City Mayor’s Minute By Gary Ivey

We hope you have had a great summer! It’s hard to believe students will be back in school soon and that football season is fast approaching. Hoover High will kick off its season on Aug. 23 when the team travels to Florence to play for its season opener. All of the Hoover High home games will be played at the Hoover Met Stadium. Spain Park High will kick off its first game on its home field against Homewood, also on Aug. 23. We wish both teams continued success in their upcoming seasons. Our first Freedom Fest held on the Fourth of July at the Hoover Met Stadium was a tremendous success. Despite the inclement weather, we had a packed stadium, great entertainment and a fireworks show that was one of the best in the state! We hope to make this an annual free event in our City and hope you will put that in your plans for 2014. The Chapel Lane Extension road project has been a long awaited improvement for that area and should help alleviate a lot of traffic issues in that part of Hoover. The project should be completed this fall. We have additional road improvements planned for U.S. 31; however, those will

U.S. 31 widening delayed By JEFF THOMPSON

Gary Ivey

not start until after the holiday season. Once again, we are here to assist you so please call us or visit for information about city services or upcoming events. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to serve as your mayor. We will continue to work hard to keep Hoover a great place to live. Sincerely,

Gary Ivey Mayor

Holiday shoppers hoping for an easier path to the Riverchase Galleria this year will have to put on their brakes. The City of Hoover announced in June that the widening project on U.S. Highway 31 has been postponed. According to a letter sent by ALDOT Division 3 Engineer Brian Davis to the City in June, the current schedule for the project put its completion date beyond Christmas 2013 – something Hoover specifically requested to avoid if possible. “We had made it very clear we didn’t want construction going on during Christmas,” Hoover Mayor Gary Ivey said. “ALDOT sent the letter after meeting with our staff to confirm that if it wasn’t going to be complete by the holiday shopping season, we needed to move it.” Currently, the project is slated to add a full lane traveling each direction between the I-459 overpass and Data Drive south of Chace Lake – a distance of approximately a mile and a half. To assist drivers travelling north, a full turn lane will be constructed at the I-459 interchange for drivers intending to go west on the interstate toward Tuscaloosa. This is intended to reduce the bottleneck that sometimes spills onto the highway and impedes traffic flow. Ivey said the project was expanded since it was first announced in 2012, and in his letter Davis indicated plans were finalized in June 2013. Davis wrote that the project could have been let in July.

“If the projects are let to contract on July 26, the soonest that the contractor could start to work is in September, and the work would then extend into November and December,” Davis’ letter reads. “Due to the amount of work that is to be performed in the contract, we would not anticipate that the contractor could complete work before Christmas.” The new plan – approved by the Hoover City Council in July – is to delay the letting until Dec. 6. Davis indicated this would place the start date for construction around Hoover’s widening project on U.S. 31 from I-459 to April 1, 2014. Based on his timeline, the proj- Data Drive has been delayed so construction won’t ect could be completed occur during holiday shopping season. before the 2014 school year begins. ing constructed that the company anHoover’s financial contribution to ticipates opening before the holiday the widening project will be capped at shopping season. $500,000, Ivey said – reflecting a 50 Regarding other road projects in the percent match with the State of Ala- City, Ivey said he recently drove across bama up to $1 million. Any excess will the new connection from Patton Chapel be covered by the State. Road to Patton Creek Shopping Center. The project is designed to travel Much of the surface is still dirt and is through the intersection of U.S. 31 and impassable for many vehicles he said, Alabama 150, which Ivey said is one but progress on the project has been of the busiest in the city. Currently at consistent and he anticipates it to open that intersection, a Walgreen’s is be- before Labor Day.

August 2013 • 5

Shop sales tax-free the first weekend in August Alabama shoppers can expect to find back to school deals the first weekend of August. The eighth annual sales tax holiday will take place from Aug. 2-4. The City of Hoover and surrounding communities will once again participate in this weekend of discounts on a variety school supplies, computers and clothing. Homewood, Birmingham, Vestavia Hills, Mountain Brook, Chelsea, Shelby County and Jefferson County are also taking part in the state-wide holiday. There are a few general price rules for the holiday. Tax-free clothing items must cost less than $100 each, general school supplies

must cost less than $50 each, and computers/ educational computer software purchases can add up to no more than $750. Educational books under $30 will be tax-free, as will school required textbooks between the $30-$50 range. A few guidelines to keep in mind about what is not tax-free: For non-clothing items, the purchase must have some educational value; recreational video games and/or computer software will not be included. Clothing that will not be tax-free includes various accessories, such as belt buckles sold separately, costume masks, patches/emblems and more. For more visit salestax/SalesTaxHol.cfm.

City recognized for clean fuel initiatives In May 2003, the Alabama Clean Fuels Coalition (then known as Central Alabama Clean Cities) circulated a call for alternative fuel infrastructure proposals. In response, the City of Hoover submitted a proposal to install a 12,500-gallon E85 ethanol tank and dispenser at the city’s Public Safety Center. At the time, Hoover had only nine flex-fuel vehicles in its fleet. Now, Hoover has more than 220 flex-fuel vehicles, and it has adopted other alternative fuels as well. Hoover’s partnership with the Alabama Clean Fuels Coalition was featured in a recent newsletter marking Clean Cities’ 20th anniversary. The City’s use of alternative fuels has attracted considerable attention, including a visit from then-President George W. Bush in 2006 and a feature in Motor Week in 2012. The City of Hoover and the Alabama Clean Fuels Coalition have become go-to sources of information about alternative fuels in speaking

engagements, educational events and the media. “The City of Hoover is happy to work with the Alabama Clean Fuels Coalition and be a partner in conserving energy for our state,” Hoover Mayor Gary Ivey said. This year the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities program is marking two decades of progress in the deployment of alternative fuels, advanced vehicles, fuel economy improvements, and other local strategies to cut petroleum use in transportation. DOE launched the national program in 1993, and the Alabama Clean Fuels Coalition has been a key contributor to the program’s mission in Alabama since 2002. The Alabama Clean Fuels Coalition and its stakeholders have led the charge in Alabama, saving almost 3.67 million gallons of petroleum in 2012 alone. For more visit or -Submitted by the Alabama Clean Fuels Coalition

Hoover could soon be renewing vehicle tags By JEFF THOMPSON While it could still be months away, there might be reason to celebrate – specifically for everyone in Jefferson County who owns a vehicle. Local municipalities are discussing means to make it easier to renew your registration. In July, representatives from eight area cities met with state officials to discuss legislation passed in the 2012 session that paves the way for Jefferson municipalities to issue license plates. “What I’m trying to do is make this as painless for citizens as possible,” said Rep. Paul DeMarco, who sponsored the legislation. “There’s no reason to force citizens to wait in four-hour lines. That’s not good government. We need to get it resolved, and cities want to help. That’s why I passed the bill.” House Bill 498 allows the mayor of any Jefferson County municipality to designate an official to renew vehicle tags for that city’s residents. This would effectively create a fourth location for residents of a municipality to renew, as they could travel not only to existing county locations but also to their city’s

designated official. “What came out of the meeting is everybody agreed that was a good idea,” DeMarco said. “Right now, Jefferson County has 600,000 people renewing each year and only three locations. Add seven or eight cities, and all of a sudden that becomes 10 locations.” DeMarco said the meeting, which included members from the State Revenue Commission, Public Examiner’s Office and Comptroller’s Office, introduced municipalities to software Jefferson County will begin using in October. Once the County installs its new programs, it can begin training cities to use it. DeMarco said training would take approximately three days, and after that a city would be able to handle the process on its own. Great news for everyone whose last name begins with U-Z, there’s a chance – albeit slim – you could be renewing at your municipal complex in 2013. “I would like to see it in place before the end of the year,” DeMarco said. “Citizens want to see this resolved, and we don’t need to keep putting it off.”

New legislation protecting senior citizens Open forum Aug. 9 in Hoover By JEFF THOMPSON According to Rep. Paul DeMarco, the state’s senior citizens are now at a greater risk to be victims of abuse and fraud than in years past. In a recent release, DeMarco said Alabama is a hot spot for fraud aimed at consumers, and it’s particularly true for identity theft. The Federal Trade Commission recently released a report stating it recorded 3,339 identity theft complaints from Alabamians in 2010. That equals nearly 70 complaints per 100,000 residents, a rate that ranked Alabama No. 15 among the states in the FTC report. Experts say many more ID theft complaints are never reported. In light of these statistics, DeMarco cosponsored a bill in the 2013 State Legislative session that strengthens penalties against elder abuse.

“Governor [Robert] Bentley just signed this legislation into law,” DeMarco said. “And we want to educate seniors about it.” Furthering the campaign to protect the state’s seniors, DeMarco and the Hoover Senior Center will host an Elder Abuse and Fraud Prevention Seminar on Aug. 9. The open forum discussion will include Neal Morrison, the commissioner for the Alabama Department of Senior Services, and Joe Borg, the Director of the Alabama Securities Commission. The event, moderated by DeMarco, will focus on helping area seniors learn simple steps to protect themselves. DeMarco said his belief is that the statistics of elder abuse in the state are not acceptable. Doors open at noon, and the program will begin at 12:15 p.m. Robert’s Discount Pharmacy of Hoover will provide lunch. Reservation deadline is Wednesday, Aug. 7 unless capacity has been reached. Contact the Hoover Senior Center at 739-6700.

6 • August 2013

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Mary Elizabeth Rohrbach was tired of working in the corporate world. After enrolling in the culinary arts program at Jefferson State, Rohrbach quit her job and opened Mary Beth’s Pantry, a Southern casual catering company in Hoover. “The taste of our food is of the utmost importance to us,” Rohrback said. “Every single dish has been tested over and over again. We make all our own salad dressings and shop at local markets the day before every event we 1 y1 cater. We rarely use a can opener because made-from-scratch is what Hw we do well. There aren’t many down-home cooking avenues in Birmingham that can compare in our opinion, and that is why we have such loyal customers.” Mary Beth’s Pantry will cater any event, large or small, with its Southern food and a choice of lemonade or sweet tea to drink. Menu items include chicken and wild rice and a low country boil. Rohrback will willingly change the menu to accommodate her customers’ needs. On-site barbecue grilling is also offered. All in all, the new catering service offers just about everything when it comes to Southern food. They will deliver to anywhere within 25 miles of their Hoover location. Go to the Pantry at 3439 Lorna Lane or call at 520-6363 for more.

August 2013 • 7

2 Gymnastics facility moves to Hoover

In September, Premier Gymnastics will move to a newly renovated 36,000-squarefoot building in Hoover from its current Vestavia location. The company will be taking over the former SportPlex building on Lorna Road. Premier Gymnastics Academy, Inc. is owned and operated by Sheryl Dundas Thienpont, who has been actively involved in gymnastics for more than 30 years. Originally from Austin, Texas, she was a 5-year member of the USA National Gymnastics Team. The new center will feature several amenities that the old location in Vestavia did not have room to offer. There will be a separate lobby and gym for younger children so equipment can be sized specifically for them and allow for fewer distractions. Older children will have a tumbling gym, loose foam pit, and balance beam and bars gym with double the equipment of the former space. The company also looks forward to offering dance classes, cheer classes, a mom’s day out program and an outdoor pool. An indoor walking track, a lobby that is twice the current size, and nearly 100 parking spaces complete the list of new amenities. Call 823-4966 for more.

New seafood

3 eatery to open Sharks Fish & Chicken is opening a new location on Montgomery Highway in Hoover. It will be located in the same shopping center as Planet Fitness. The restaurant, owned and operated by Moses Hassan, has five other locations and is slated to open in early August. The menu offers multiple types of chicken, from nuggets to tenders to wings. There is also a wide selection of seafood including tilapia, trout, flounder and catfish. Hassan, who has more than 28 years of experience in the restaurant industry, is a Hoover resident and always wanted to open a location near his home. When he saw the right opportunity, he jumped at it. “I have lived in Hoover for 15 years, and I know it is a great place to run a business,” Hassan said. “I finally found the right place for the restaurant.” For more, visit

4 Dental clinic

to serve children

The University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Dentistry has announced a new pediatric clinic opening on Valleydale Road to serve patients with Medicaid and Alabama’s All Kids health insurance program. The new community clinic will also help to expand the School of Dentistry’s Give Kids a Smile event to a year-round offering. The pediatric dentistry clinic offers a variety of services, such as cleanings, fillings and crowns. The clinic will be open on Tuesdays and will be able to service nearly 30 patients each day. The clinic’s staff will include UAB dental professionals, graduate students, and students in their third and fourth years of dental education. The clinic is an outgrowth of the school’s involvement with Cahaba Valley Healthcare, which provides dental services for disadvantaged adults in the Jefferson/ North Shelby area. CVHS has a history of partnering with UAB, including in the Give Kids a Smile event. Because CVHS is only open on weekends for adults, the School of Dentistry decided that they should offer care for children during the week. To make an appointment, call 975-1277. The address is 4515 Southlake Parkway, Suite 150.

5 Sola Salon Studios

opens in Belle Foods shopping center

Sola Salon Studios opened in July in a 4,800-square-foot space in the Belle Foods shopping center. The company, which is

based out of Denver, lets local hairdressers, manicurists, pedicurists, estheticians, cosmetologists and massage therapists rent their own independent salon studios. The salon will offer 24 separate studios, each independent of the other. “Instead of renting a booth or a chair and paying commission to a salon owner, we let people have their own studio with no drama and 24/7 access,” Franchise Owner King Rogers said. Sola Salon Studios decided to come to Birmingham because of Hoover’s high salon density. Rogers is confident that the shopping center is in good hands. “I am somewhat familiar with the landlord, and he is committed to transforming it into a class A shopping center,” he said. At the time of opening, Sola Salon Studios was 70 percent leased out, a good sign for their future. For more, call Rogers at 440-2664.

A new place

6 to hunt bargains The former Food World location on Lorna Road has been filled by a store new to the Birmingham area: Bargain Hunt. The chain, which is owned by Nashvillebased Essex Technology Group, has 18 locations and is looking to expand into the Birmingham market with this as its second location in the city. The store is scheduled to open in early August. “Bargain Hunt is a unique concept when it comes to clearance items,” advertising director Carman Gary said. “We sell all types of name-brand things at an average of 35 percent less than a regular store.” The company, which buys items from major national chains that the chain cannot sell for various reasons, sells small appliances, clothing, toys, sporting goods, furniture and electronics. Electronics make up 60 percent of its sales. Bargain Hunt also has an internal discount program with an automatic markdown pricing program that will reduce the cost of items based on how long they have been on the shelf up to 90 percent. “After 30 days, we start taking off 10 percent each week,” Gary said. “Most things sell quickly, but every once in a while you can find something great for a huge discount. That’s the beauty of the store, and that’s what makes us different from stores like T.J. Maxx.” The other Bargain Hunt location in Birmingham is on Crestwood Boulevard. The company also has locations in Huntsville and Florence, as well as in Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia and Mississippi. For more, visit

It’s good, common sense...

Hotel partners

7 with nonprofit

to offer employment opportunities

This summer, Birmingham-based nonprofit agency Triumph Services is running a summer program at the Candlewood Suites in Hoover to boost employment opportunities in the hospitality industry. Triumph Services is partnering with Intercontinental Hotels Group through the IHG Academy. Triumph Services partners with more than 100 local businesses to support adults with developmental disabilities in employment and independent living. The IHG Academy will help them achieve this goal. Participants spend six weeks in a paid internship in Hoover, learning skills and gaining experience for possible future employment with the Intercontinental Hotels Group. At the end of the six weeks, participants will have the opportunity to interview for a job with the group. Training focuses on all aspects of the hospitality industry from housekeeping and maintenance to sales and hotel management. For more information about IHG Academy visit For more information about Triumph Services call 581-1000 or visit Mouse ads-VillageLivingHALF.indd 3

7/18/13 9:57 AM

8 • August 2013

Business Spotlight

Fred Astaire Dance Studio

Read past Business Spotlights at

1941 Hoover Court 979-4777 Weekdays, noon-9 p.m.

Fabian Sanchez, who grew up in Colombia and has competed on Dancing With the Stars, owns the Fred Astaire Dance Studio in Hoover.

By WILL HIGHTOWER Fabian Sanchez has been everywhere. He was born in New York. He grew up Colombia. He graduated from high school and worked in Birmingham. And lastly, and most famously, he performed on Dancing With the Stars and So You Think You Can Dance in Los Angeles. Sanchez now owns a franchise location of Fred Astaire Dance Studio in Hoover with his wife, Jackie. Their staff consists of eight instructors who teach ballroom dancing to people of all ages, with more younger people coming in recently because of the popularity of dance shows. “Ten years ago, before all these dance shows became popular, we taught mostly older people,” Sanchez said. “But now we start teaching at age 6 and have a wide variety of ages, from teens to young professionals to grandparents. Dance shows have changed people’s opinions on ballroom dancing. They’ve made it sexy and made it cool.” Sanchez constantly danced and listened to salsa music with friends and family growing up in Cali, Colombia, the salsa music capital of the world. But his true love was soccer. “Soccer was my life, my religion, my passion,” Sanchez said. “It was all I ever thought about.” His plans to be a professional soccer player went awry when his grades prevented him from playing in college. One summer, Sanchez was working at Ryan’s Steakhouse in Birmingham serving drinks while trying to figure out how to

Hoover Sun

get back to playing soccer. A chance encounter with Fred Astaire regional franchise owner Allen King set his life on a different course. “I was serving drinks to Allen, and for some reason he really liked my personality and asked me about myself and if I could dance,” Sanchez said. “And I said ‘I’m Latin. Of course I can dance.’ I owe a lot to Allen. He discovered me in that restaurant.” After working at Fred Astaire for 10 years as an instructor, Fabian and his wife decided to

open their own franchise. “Jackie was pregnant with our son, Ty, and I knew that owning a business – while it would be hard at first – would eventually give me more freedom,” Sanchez said. In 2009, Sanchez became a national sensation as a dancer on Dancing With the Stars. He was chosen after an interview with producers in Los Angeles and paired with Oscar-winning actress Marlee Matlin, who is deaf. The two were the sixth couple

eliminated in season six of the show. “Dancing With the Stars was something very special I got to do,” Sanchez said. “It took a lot of patience and hard work to work with Marlee, but it ended up being a ton of fun. My experience there is something that not many other dance instructors have.” After his stint on Dancing With the Stars and winning the 2006 Mambo championship, Sanchez also spent time as a salsa choreographer on So You Think You Can Dance. He credits these shows for bringing ballroom dancing into the spotlight. “I want everyone to learn the art of beautiful ballroom dancing,” Sanchez said. “It’s funny – I’ve seen lots of people come in here with no confidence. You can see it in their eyes. But dancing has changed their lives 1,000 percent. They’re more confident, they’re more social, they dress sexier. Their lives have changed for the better. There’s not a store where you can buy confidence. But dancing helps a lot.” Now energetic and friendly, Sanchez said he did not even take anyone to his prom at Berry High School because he was too scared to ask a girl. But dancing gave him confidence to start a conversation with any random stranger. This friendly attitude carries over into his studio and is evident in how the staff know all of their dancers when they walk in. “People aren’t so focused on their lessons that they forget to be friendly,” Sanchez said. “It’s a family atmosphere. The good thing about dancing at my studio is that anyone can do it. You will learn. I guarantee it. And then there are all the other benefits, like having a new hobby, exercise and meeting new people.”

August 2013 • 9

Restaurant Showcase

Read past Restaurant Showcases at

Beef ‘O’ Brady’s

5519 Grove Blvd. 987-9464 Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Sunday, 11 a.m.-9 p.m.


Giving back to the community sits at the top of the menu for George McCluney, owner of The Grove’s Beef ‘O’ Brady’s. Founded in 1985, the Beef ‘O’ Brady’s chain was fashioned as an Irish neighborhood pub, and McCluney, 49, has continued that vision by making the community the center of both the restaurant and his life. “Beef ‘O’ Brady’s concept is based on affiliating with all local schools and sports, rather than spending huge [amounts of] money on TV commercials or radio advertising,” McCluney said. On an average day one can find him working closely with employees and nurturing relationships he has groomed with customers since the restaurant’s opening in 2009. “I love the customer contact and building those relationships,” McCluney said. “It’s one of the main reasons I wanted to be in this business.” Building connections is something he has trained employees to do, as well. “I can’t think of many chains where employees know your name and know what your favorite meal or favorite drink is,” McCluney said. “I’ve surrounded myself with people that are talented, hard-working and have great attitudes. Their willingness to always step up to the plate and go the extra mile is rewarding to see.” McCluney’s connection with people within the community comes from his dedication to making people feel welcome, showing them he appreciates their business and creating a familyfriendly and fun atmosphere. With televisions in every direction, a game room and a small stage, Beef ‘O’ Brady’s reflects the fun essence McCluney aimed for.

Beef ‘O’ Brady’s serves not only Irish fare but also American favorites like hot wings and the ‘O’ Brady Burger. Photo by Intisar Seraaj-Sabree.

Lamonte and Larena Jackson, parents of Hoover High running back Kyler Jackson, left, pose with Bucs Head Football Coach Josh Niblett at the team’s 2012 State Championship party, which was held at Beef O’Brady’s. Photo by Jeff Thompson.

As a youth who loved to play live music across town at restaurants and lounges, McCluney fell in love with entertaining people at an early age. “I enjoy providing an atmosphere for other people to have fun [in],” McCluney said. But beyond the fun and games lies a commitment to community and family. McCluney said providing for his family is his motivation, along with the reward of having loyal customers. Overwhelmed with emotion, McCluney recounted a local family’s recent loss of all of its possessions in a house fire. Immediately looking


to help, he put their story on Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Facebook page the day after Father’s Day. Since then, more than $5,000 in gift certificates and gift cards has been raised, in addition to various donations including clothes and furniture. “It’s amazing to see how, when people are in need, the community comes together,” McCluney said. McCluney reaches out not only in times of desperation. Beef ‘O’ Brady’s regularly hosts fundraisers for sports teams and school groups. He also spends his time with family. In order

to take care of customers, he sometimes balances family and business in an off-beat way, such as having date night with his wife, Eileen, on weeknights. McCluney literally incorporates family into his business. When his two daughters are home from college, they help as servers. His wife’s Irish heritage also influenced his decision to start the restaurant. On trips to Ireland, they loved the family-friendly environment they found in local pubs — the same quality they work to bring to Beef ‘O’ Brady’s. The menu at the restaurant is how a restaurant really exhibits its quality. A few favorites reflecting the Irish foundation of the franchise include The Dubliner and Fish ‘N’ Chips. Besides these, the wings are one of the best-selling items on the menu. “It’s important that the customers get the best service and the best food every time they come in,” McCluney said.

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10 • August 2013

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Hoover grads earn Gold Awards Creating teen driving awareness Elizabeth Nichols, a Hoover High School graduate who will attend Auburn University this fall, recently earned the Girl Scout Gold Award for her work with teen driving safety awareness. Nichols’ project focused on educating teens at Hoover High School about Alabama’s graduated drivers’ license laws and how the laws are designed to keep teens safe. Young drivers and their parents attended a presentation where Nichols talked about the laws, local professionals gave advice on safe driving and a mother talked about losing her child to unsafe driving. She also created a curriculum for drivers’ education teachers at Hoover High School. Teachers who received the curriculum will continue to use it in their classrooms and will update it as laws change. “I think that the most successful aspect of my project was relaying to teenagers that they are not invincible and that driving is a serious task,” Nichols said.

Celebrating veterans

Olivia Rawlins Butler, a Hoover High School graduate who will attend Rhodes College this fall, recently earned the Girl Scout Gold Award for her project South Haven Nursing Home Independence Day Celebration. Her project focused on recognizing the military service of veterans in South Haven. She put into place a Veteran’s Appreciation Program, which included an Independence Day celebration. For the program, she made decorations for all the residents’ doors and indicated which residents were veterans with special signs and decorations. Butler also organized a program where Hoover High School Chamber Choir members sang the national anthem, and the Hoover High School featured twirler performed. Veterans

Elizabeth Nichols

Olivia Rawlins Butler

were recognized as songs for each branch of the military were played. She, other Girl Scouts and friends visited with residents as they enjoyed a huge red, white and blue cake. Butler’s brother-in-law, who was deployed but able to come home for Christmas, also visited with residents and thanked them for their service. He also helped Butler deliver blankets she and her friends made for the residents. “I learned that taking an interest in people goes a long way in making them feel valuable and contributing to their overall wellness. When talking to the veterans, asking about their lives and making an effort to make their day better, I saw the joy that was brought by such a simple act,” Butler said. The staff at the nursing home plans to continue the program as an annual tradition, and it is already on the calendar for 2013.

Cheering up children with cancer Ashley N. Scharf, a Hoover High School graduate who will attend The University of Alabama this fall, recently earned the Girl Scout

Ashley N. Scharf

Gold Award for her project Tera’s Treasures. Her project focused on providing the patients of Children’s of Alabama with an escape from their illnesses. She organized a tie-dying party and a cookie/snow cone party for children, and she recruited several students and groups to help with her project, including the Hoover Juniorettes, Hoover High School Ambassadors, Hoover High School Chamber Choir and other Girl Scouts. They put together 175 toiletry kits for patients and provided 100 pillowcases and T-shirts to tie-dye. “You could tell how much [the children] needed time away from all their tests and sickness,” Scharf said. “If just for a little while, they had fun, and there were lots of smiles and laughter, even in the midst of bandages, wheelchairs and IV poles.” The Hoover Juniorettes will sustain the project in the future. Scharf gave those who helped with her project information about childhood cancer and the Children’s cancer unit. Her project encouraged her to pursue a career in this area; she even got to shadow a child life specialist in the cancer unit one afternoon. -Submitted by Girl Scouts of North-Central Alabama

August 2013 • 11

Local singer-songwriter releases first studio-length album Ancient lyrics receive a folk rock update By REBECCA WALDEN Imagine the folk rock trifecta of Ray LaMontagne, Stephen Stills and James Taylor singing excerpts from the Baptist hymnal, and you’ve got a pretty good idea of what the Poets and Saints album is like. The recently released self-titled album is the brainchild of Bluff Park native Matt Scott, who credits a musicenriched upbringing as the driving force behind his pursuit to become an artist. As early as age 5, Scott began playing piano. By the time he started – Matt Scott at Simmons Middle School, Scott had also picked up guitar. A typical school day often ended with him swapping his backpack out for a guitar and amp before ambling down to a friend’s house for afternoon jam sessions. In high school, Scott added theatre to his artistic repertoire. His combined skills made him a natural choice to lead a variety of conferences, camps and services through his church, Green Valley Baptist. Capitalizing on these strengths, he opted to double major in music performance and worship

leadership when he enrolled as a freshman at The University of Mobile. Upon graduation, Scott married Kristen Albert of West Palm Beach, and the two settled into their new life together in a small starter home in Mobile. Although they’ve since moved from that newlywed house, the street numbers – 2654 – inspired them to create The 2654 Project. “The 2654 Project is an effort to merge and showcase our art,” said Scott, who added that the couple’s first home was where they began creating art, primarily using the mediums of music, photography and carpentry. Scott said the creation of The 2654 Project was essentially a pact between husband and wife to purposefully live out their creative pursuits. For Kristen, that decision led to a fruitful career as a portrait, lifestyle and wedding photographer. For Matt, it meant putting pen to paper and honing the sound that would shape Poets and Saints. The yearlong creative process included extensive research and song selection. “Hymns seem to be underappreciated

‘Hymns seem to be underappreciated and unknown to many young people today’

and unknown to many young people today,” Scott said, explaining his decision to create new music for the lyrics of old hymns. “In a way, I’m trying to preserve this important part of history. “I have some 30 plus hymnals from the 18 and 1900s that I dug through for several months before I ever started writing. Then, I began writing a new melody to the ancient poetic lyric, often adding my own chorus or bridge.” Scott is quick to admit none of it would have happened without the generosity of strangers – more than 150 of them donated $15,000 via Kickstarter to fund the effort. “It was amazing having so many people join me and the other musicians in this,” he said. “And I think it really speaks to the power of community and how beautiful it is for people to join up and create something together.” The endeavor is finding its audience. From teens to retirees, from the faithful to the faithless, fans are gravitating to what they hear. “I’ve been surprised how many people have responded positively to the project who don’t align themselves with the Christian faith,” he said. “The music we were able to create is seemingly bridging a gap amongst different faith backgrounds, even though the lyrics are very focused.” To learn more about Scott’s music, visit the

Matt Scott’s music was largely inspired by his musical experiences growing up in Bluff Park. Photo courtesy of Matthew Scott.

12 • August 2013

Running for a better life Race to benefit international ministries of (Un)adopted

Hoover Sun

R(un) for One

5K and One-Mile Fun Run Benefits (Un)adopted A division of Lifeline Children’s Services Sept. 7, Veterans Park

By CAROLINE DREW There are more than 153 million orphans in the world today, and many of them might never be adopted. Once an orphan is too old to be adopted, he or she is left to fight the uphill battle that is life without a family. There is no way to ensure all of these abandoned young people find homes, but there is a way to help pave the rough road ahead of them. Five hundred people attended the R(un) for One 5K last year, and Elizabeth Gilmer, race organizer, said she expects around 800 runners to attend this year. “Families, sponsors, adults, children — everyone came out,” said Caitlin Miley, race intern, of the event’s previous success. Returning for its second year, R(un) for One plans to deliver another day of fun for the whole family. After all, this race benefits those who don’t have a family themselves.

Left, Adoptive dad Geoffrey Ketcham and (un)adopted team member Garth Thorpe sport R(un) for One shirts at last year’s event. Right, a runner participates in the 5K at Veterans Park. Photos courtesy of Lifeline Children’s Services.

The race, which will be held on Sept. 7 in Veterans Park, supports the efforts of (Un)adopted, a division of Lifeline Children Services. (Un)adopted works to meet the physical and spiritual needs of orphans who are unlikely to be adopted due to their older age. Miley said (Un)adopted “provides life skills and shares Christ” with these young people, usually around the age of 16. Funds raised at the R(un) for One will benefit ministries in nine different countries. “It looks different for every place,” Miley said of the (Un)adopted international efforts, which are catered to each nation’s culture. Tents will be set up at the race for

each country and its unique ministry for those who want to learn more. For example, Miley said, deaf children in Uganda are seen as cursed and are cast out of their families. There, (Un)adopted has partnered with a local church to start a school intended to cater to their special needs. Gilmer said she is encouraged by how much the community truly enjoyed last year’s race. “Lots of people hung around long after the race ended, and so many runners told us it was the most fun run they had ever been to,” she said. And how could it not be with all of the post-race activities? According to Gilmer, there will be food, live music from the local up-and-coming band

Cardinal, kids’ activities, a bouncy house, as well as opportunities to learn more about specific ways runners can get involved in (Un) adopted. Food will be donated from a variety of local restaurants such as Jim ‘N Nicks and Doodles. Other local business are contributing to R(un) for One’s success. “We are excited to have Skin Diagnostics return as our event sponsor, as well as many others,” Gilmer said. “There are so many businesses in the Birmingham area that are committed to helping the fatherless both locally and across the world, and this is a great opportunity for them to invest in a ministry that is doing just that and get their name in front of hundreds of people.”

In addition to the 5K race, R(un) for One will also feature a one-mile Children’s Fun Run. This race will begin at 8:45 a.m., and it is not just for kids. Anyone is welcome to take part in the shorter race. The 5K begins at 8 a.m., and registration opens at 7 a.m. Registration for the 5K is $30 before Sept. 7 or $35 on race day. Fun Run registration is $10 before Sept. 7 or $15 on race day. Online registration closes after Sept. 4. Teams are encouraged to register together. To register for R(un) for One or for more, visit or call 940-4623. Email any questions to

August 2013 • 13

Service club recognizes area students and volunteers

Top, Spain Park and Hoover High School recipients were Haven Eddy, Cailyn Flynn, Hunter Gibson, Kyle Griffin, Ben Holcomb, Mizna Kanafani, Kiara Lewis, Madison Luther, Keondria Moon, Abby Morris. Also pictured are Mayor Gary Ivey and Hoover Schools Superintendent Andy Craig. Above, Berry, Bumpus and Simmons Middle School recipients were Hope Dawson, Hannah Farnlarcher, Grace Friedman, Caroline Hart, Rachel Hendricks and Amelia Grace Hill.

The Hoover Service Club recently presented $14,500 in scholarships to Hoover and Spain Park High School students and recognition awards to middle school students.

Library Theatre season tickets to go on sale Hoover Public Library’s Library Theatre has announced the lineup for its 23rd season and will open ticket sales this month. A full-season package consists of one ticket for each of the nine shows during the season. Additional individual tickets are available beginning Aug. 10. Last year’s full-season subscribers may purchase a 20132014 full-season package beginning Aug. 5 at 11 a.m. New full-season subscribers may purchase the full-season package beginning Aug. 9 at 8 a.m. Beginning Aug. 10 at 8 a.m., individual and multi-show tickets will be available. Regular box hours start Aug. 12 at 11 a.m. and will be Monday-Friday from 11 a.m.-6 p.m., with special hours for performances. Special Saturday hours are 8 a.m.-2 p.m. All tickets may be purchased online, at the Box Office or by calling 444-7888. Tickets are $25 each, plus processing

fees of $2.50 per ticket. Accepted forms of payment are cash, check, VISA, MasterCard or Discover. Mail orders are not accepted. Seating is reserved, with no guarantee that the same seats are available for all performances purchased. Visit for more.

The season includes: ›› Daily & Vincent - Sept. 12-13 ›› Fahrenheit 451 - Oct. 10-11 ›› Sweet Honey in the Rock - Nov. 16 ›› A Christmas Survival Guide - Dec. 5-7 ›› An Evening with Molly Ringwald - Jan. 17-18 ›› Liz Story - Feb. 19-20 ›› Driving Miss Daisy March 15 ›› Masters of the Fiddle April 11-12 ›› Suzy Bogguss- May 2-3

Greystone Ladies Club welcomes new leadership

Mary Sue Ludwig received the Flora Mae Pike Community Service Award.

Recipients were selected on the basis of academics, community service and need. Mary Sue Ludwig also received the club’s annual Flora Mae Pike Community Service Award.

The award honors a Hoover resident who has demonstrated outstanding volunteer service to the community. It is named in honor of the founder of the service organization.

The Greystone Ladies Club has announced its new officers for the upcoming year: President Mechelle Wilder, VP of Communications Carole Marks, VP of Membership Tina Douglass, VP of Programs Kathy Frey, VP of Social Carolyn Haynes, Secretary Renea Breen and Treasurer Barbara Brickner. LaRue Carter, Therese Haselden and Shirl Ward served on the nominating committee.

14 • August 2013

Hoover Sun


One family’s journey, and why they are leaving the U.S. behind By REBECCA WALDEN Sherri Sexton hates sand. And the heat. And pretty much everything that goes with it. “We are mountain people, and we love air conditioning!” said the mother, who is in final preparations to leave her job as a marketing specialist at Backus Orthodontics to become a full-time missionary in Baja California, Mexico. “My human flesh could not just want to move to the desert where there is sand and 110 degree temperatures.” Sexton admits that the decision to sell their home, cars and personal belongings and move her family to a foreign country has been on her heart for years, though she tried to ignore it. Sexton first traveled to Mexico for mission work in the summer of 2008. While her husband, Mike, had confessed that he’d long felt called to mission work, it was a notion Sexton, at the time, didn’t share. “I kept saying no; I am family-oriented and [told him] I will not leave my family or my country,” she said. “But, the Lord spoke very clearly to me on that trip.” During that 2008 journey to the city of Zacatecas, Mexico, Sexton said she experienced a profound change of heart. “Living in the day we do and living in the South, we are a very prejudiced people. You don’t just wake up one day and decide you are going to love a certain group of people,” she

Above: the Sextons will teach students at Rancho Sordo Mudo trade skills such as knitting so they can earn a living upon graduation. Left: Ashtyn, Mike and Sherri Sexton.

said. “But I heard Him say to me, ‘These are my people. And I love them. And you’re going to love them like I love them.’ That is a love He put in my heart.” Fast-forward to summer 2013: the Sextons are working toward the 90 percent funding requirement their sponsoring organization, Pioneers, has established before authorizing the family to transition into full-time missionaries. Sexton is hopeful that she, Mike and their 13-year-old daughter, Ashtyn, will be settled into their new home and roles as early as this fall. The Sextons have been assigned to assist with Rancho Sordo Mudo, a free school for deaf children that is located in Guadalupe Valley. The 40-year-old facility serves as a turning point for deaf children who have been rejected

by their families and left on their own. When these abandoned children are identified by police, they are brought to the school. “We give them a language (sign language), and once they can communicate, they are given an education,” said Sexton, adding that her role at the Ranch will include teaching the girls a trade, such as baking or sewing, so they have the means to earn a living upon graduation. Rancho Sordo Mudo currently houses 42 children, who are fed primarily from nonperishable food pantry donations. Mike will add farming to the ranch. “The kids don’t get a lot of protein or meat, so part of his role will be to supply these kids with both on a regular basis.” Emotional nurturing will be another

significant part of their work. “There is a lot of defiance and acting out because they don’t have a language,” Sexton said. “And once they do learn to communicate, there is a lot of anger about why their families abandoned them. They’ve been caught up with drugs, prostitution and trafficking with no means to express themselves.” Sexton admits she is as anxious as she is excited to arrive and get started. “Something just happened when we were there. We just knew this is the place we will call ‘home’ now. We know it will mean a lot of changes for our family, but that is okay.” To learn more about the Sexton family’s missionary work, visit journeytoaharvest.


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August 2013 • 15

National Night Out promotes safety awareness By INTISAR SERAAJ-SABREE Imagine going up to police officers, firefighters, state troopers and SWAT team members and asking them about anything from fires to firearms and not looking suspicious. On Aug. 6 from 6-9 p.m., National Night Out (NNO), a national, annual family event promoting safety awareness, will give people direct access to public safety officials. “People can ask anything from how the SWAT

Hoover Police Department K-9 Officer Lee Love introduces his four-paw partner.

team uses a bomb squad robot to analyze a bomb remotely [or] what it takes to be a police officer to tips on bicycle safety,” Capt. Jim Coker of the Hoover Police Department said. But playing 20 Questions with law officials is not the only fun to have. According to Coker, who has participated in Hoover’s NNO for several years in his 29year span of working with the Hoover Police Department, there will be an assortment of booths and demonstrations from each participating safety department, including helicopter rides, motorcycle officers displaying their skills and a meet-and-greet with the police K9 Unit. “We enjoy showing off to our citizens,” Coker said. And they will perform. They will even let down their shields, metaphorically speaking. “You get to see law enforcement in a different element,” said Nathan Hamblin, team leader at Hoover’s Super Target. “You see them laugh and smile in a natural environment, [and see them] in a positive light.” The City of Hoover collaborated with Hoover’s Super Target to sponsor this fun, free event. NNO offers food and beverages, giveaways, musical entertainment by 102.5 The Bull and various activities such as moon bounces, a car show, a fireman rope descend and a dunking booth.

Hoover Fire Inspector Ricky Linn has help demonstrating the proper way to use a fire extinguisher. Photos courtesy of Hoover Police Department.

But diving deeper than a dunking booth, NNO is “about people getting involved with their community and the community getting involved with the people,” according to Hamblin, who has participated in NNO for five years, including two years in Hoover. NNO seeks to encourage community participation in crime prevention activities, to promote police connections with their communities and to increase neighborhood camaraderie through a variety of exhibitions and simulations. People are encouraged to bring the whole family and to not only learn about general safety tips, but to learn about how local safety officials strive to maintain a safe community. “It’s a great opportunity to come out and participate,” Coker said. “It’s very much a family atmosphere.” NNO was created in 1984 by the National Association of Town Watch (NATW), a non-profit organization faithful to the

Safety Tips from Target  Be aware of your surroundings.  Make sure your equipment, 

including your car, is working and fully prepared. Have a good routine of getting out of the house in case of a fire, have multiple escape routes and practice these plans, especially with your kids.

Safety Tips from HPD  Know your neighbors.  If you see something, call the police immediately.

 Don’t make yourself attractive

as a victim; lock your doors, hide personal items in your car, etc.

advancement and elevation of numerous crime prevention programs. The Super Target is located in the Grove Shopping Center at 5561 Grove Blvd. off of Alabama 150. For more, visit, or

16 • August 2013

Hoover Sun

Back-to-school fashion guide Patterns & Prints


Don’t be afraid to make a statement by mixing prints and patterns. Animal print is always stylish, but chevron patterns are especially popular this season. Whether slipping on leopard shoes with a chevron dress or wearing cheetah pants with feather pattern accessories, just have fun.

The first day of school can be nerve-racking. But in honor of beginning a new school year, making new friends and learning new things, try something new with your wardrobe. Be daring, adventurous and courageous with your clothing, and your first days back might feel the same, too.

Styles from DeVon Boutique Blue SLA Khaki/Black open-back chevron dress, $47 OTBT (Off The Beaten Track) Bushnell Leopard Sandals, $99 Styles from Silver Lining Consignment Boutique Adante Black/Gold chevron bracelet, $18 Fresh gold cross necklace, $12 Gold cross earrings, $10

Dress-up & Play

Weekdays are usually hectic, especially when your children are in after-school activities or you have a family event planned. But feet are crucial to getting you through the day. Try a double-duty shoe that is ready to be dressed-up or played in at any moment. Every fall, Kicks gets a new version of this fashionable and functional shoe. Styles by Kicks Shoes by Morgan and Milo, $44

Tees & Crosses

Getting ready for school can take forever sometimes, especially after struggling to just wake up. Tees are easy to throw on and create a relaxed yet trendy look. Try a tee that is monogrammed, patterned or colorful. Mustard Seeds sells pocket tees with a chevron cross in the corner of the pocket. Styles from Mustard Seeds Child’s pocket tee, $30

Lace & Skinny Jeans

Wear this ivory lace bell sleeve top on the shoulder for school and off the shoulder for a more sophisticated after-school look. Add color with tangerine skinny jeans, and accessorize with both a dainty handmade pearl necklaces and a big and bold bangle. Styles from Urban Barn Lace Bell-Sleeve Top (ivory), $58 Skinny jeans (tangerine), $20 Macramé wedges (cream), $28 Handmade Pearl Necklace, $18-28

August 2013 • 17

Behind the race

Ovarian Cancer Prevention

Lake Cyrus family furthers mission of Head Over Teal By REBECCA WALDEN

yet only 15 percent of these cancers are detected early.” Two years ago, Ginny Bourland Head Over Teal 5K’s proceeds, along was just like a lot of Hoover with other work from The Laura Crandall 30-something women, fulfilled in Brown Ovarian Cancer Foundation, are her career as an actuary and happily indeed making a local impact. married mom raising a five-year-old “In only the past two years, there son and two-year-old daughter. have been hundreds of thousands of With no prior medical conditions dollars raised for ovarian cancer in the and leading an otherwise healthy Birmingham area alone,” said Bourland, lifestyle, Bourland took particular noting that additional, promising research notice when her sudden weight is also happening at the University of gain was unresponsive to increased South Alabama Mitchell Cancer Institute exercise and diet changes. and the Abramson Cancer Center at the Bourland persisted in finding University of Pennsylvania. an answer despite her general Bourland’s long journey brought one practitioner and gynecologist remission status after her first course of attributing the symptoms to treatment only to discover the cancer had decreased metabolism and stress. metastasized to her breast. She underwent “I knew that none of those treatment again and again received word of Ovarian cancer survivor Ginny Bourland with Shea, Will and Bella explanations really sufficed,” she remission status. After all of that, Bourland Bourland. Photo courtesy of Ginny Bourland. said. “This was not normal for me.” said she’s still got plenty of fight left in her. That persistence led her to the “Anytime I think I’m worn down or about it being cancer.” ER, where Bourland said she was determined to While she was adjusting to the intense care that I don’t have it in me to go on, I look around find answers. regimen her fight would require – an immediate at all that is being done in the fight, at all the Indeed, after a CT scan, Bourland was told hysterectomy and a 66-week chemo regimen people who have given so much of their time and she likely had a type of abdominal cancer. – Bourland received support outreach from resources to help us through this, at my precious Within 24 hours, an oncologist confirmed it as numerous sources, including The CanSurvive family who are my biggest cheerleaders of all, ovarian cancer. Support Group for women with gynecologic and I pray for God to give me the strength for one Bourland’s cancer was already in Stage IV, as cancers. In addition to emotional support, the more day and just continue on,” she said. is characteristic of ovarian cancer diagnoses in group encouraged Bourland, just two months She doesn’t have to look far to find others general, which are often caught in the later stages. into her diagnosis and treatment, to connect joining in the fight. For example, Bourland This led to a survival prognosis of 18 percent. with The Laura Crandall Brown Ovarian Cancer mentioned UAB’s $10 million fundraising Despite that, the young mother said she never Foundation (LCBOCF), which sponsors the Head campaign to fight ovarian cancer, with donated thought about not fighting it. monies being matched at 100 percent. Over Teal 5K. “With two little children and a supportive The 2013 Head Over Teal 5K/1 Mile Fun Run “As a survivor, [I find it] very encouraging to husband, there was never any debate in my see the efforts being made to make a difference,” and Family Fun Day will take place on Saturday, mind about my options,” she said. “I had been Bourland said. “Laura [Crandall Brown] was in Sept. 14, at The Preserve in Hoover. The 5K struggling with the weight gain and bloating for her early 20s when diagnosed and survived only begins at 8 a.m., with the Fun Run to follow at seven months, and I was so relieved to have a 15 months after diagnosis. When caught early 9 a.m. To learn more or to register, please visit diagnosis that I didn’t actually think too much (Stage I or II), the survival rate is 90 percent,

 Be Your Own Advocate. Most women don’t realize that when they go to their annual exam, a pap smear only tests for cervical cancer. There is no routine exam for ovarian cancer, and a pap smear does not detect ovarian cancer. Patients should be their own advocates and speak up when something abnormal persists.  Remember the B.E.A.T. Test Ovarian cancer is frequently misdiagnosed as irritable bowel syndrome or some other gastrointestinal disorder. Ovarian cancer symptoms include: B = Bloating E = Eating less, feeling full more quickly A = abdominal pain T = trouble/frequency urinating  Think of Laura Laura Crandall Brown was a vibrant young woman who battled ovarian cancer for 15 months before her untimely death. Her desire to form a foundation whose purpose is to raise funds for early detection and treatment of ovarian cancer has been carried out by her family and other supporters. Learn more at



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18 • August 2013

Hoover Sun

Hoover Buccaneers 2013 Season Preview

Bradrick Shaw (27) is helping replace Calen Campbell at running back. Photos courtesy of Hoover City Schools/

2013SCHEDULE Date 8/30 9/06 9/13 9/20 9/27 10/04 10/11 10/18 10/25 10/31

Opponent Colquitt County Hueytown* Jackson-Olin* Northridge* Vestavia Hills Bessemer City* Hillcrest* Minor* Tuscaloosa County* Opelika *Region game

Location Home Home Away Home Away Away Home Away Home Away

Time 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m.

2012 Results: Finished a dominant 15-0 season with a 31-0 win over Opelika to take the 6A State Championship, the ninth in Hoover’s history. Head Coach: Josh Niblett (69-6 in five years at Hoover; reached state title game every year). Key Losses: QB Connor Short, RB Calen Campbell, WR Michael Powers, OL Eddie Foster. Key Players: CB Marlon Humphrey, DE Christian Bell, LB Darrell Williams, RB Bradrick Shaw, WR Justin Johnson.

August 2013 • 19

Bucs reloading after 15-0 season By WILL HIGHTOWER


n an era of dominance such as the one Hoover is enjoying now, one thing is certain: expectations are skyhigh year-in and year-out. For a program that has made it to 12 of the last 13 state championship games, seasons like 2012 become almost the norm. That team, which was 15-0 and easily stomped Opelika 31-0 in the state title game, is gone. The 2013 Bucs, who will only be returning eight of 22 starters, have to somehow follow in those footsteps and create their own legacy. Given the history of this program, that might not be a huge problem. What is termed as “rebuilding” at other schools is more like “reloading” at Hoover. Players seem to always replace graduated seniors and thrive. If anything has been a constant, though, it is head coach Josh Niblett. Niblett is 69-6 in five seasons at Hoover and has reached the state title game every year. Niblett’s mantra for this year is “NEXT: Never Enough Excel Today.” “We have a saying around here that goes ‘You can’t drive forward while looking in the rearview mirror,’” he said. “We can’t climb the mountain in front of us if we’re too busy sitting and marveling at the one we just climbed.” Hoover does lose defensive coordinator Shawn Raney to traditional rival Spain Park High School, though the Jaguars are not on the schedule this season. Niblett has chosen Robert Evans as Raney’s successor. “Shawn [Raney] did a really good job of adjusting our scheme each year

Defensive back Marlon Humphrey (26), widely considered the top football prospect in the state, makes a tackle last season.

to what our personnel was,” Niblett said. “I wish him the best of luck. I was so happy for him because I knew how much he wanted to be a head coach. And Robert had a great spring and was the most qualified for the job. I believe if you surround yourself with good people, you have a good chance to succeed.” The Bucs return several key players from a defense that only gave up an average of nine points per game last season. Several seniors and a stellar junior class that has coaches talking across the state will lead the defense. The junior class that boasts multiple, highly touted college recruits hasn’t lost a game since seventh grade. “We have a lot of length and speed on defense,” Niblett said. “We have the potential to be really good on defense, and we need to be.” Senior cornerback Marlon Humphrey, the track speedster who

Lineman Dylan Ackerson (98) is one of five returning starters on the defensive side of the ball.

has garnered a five-star ranking from, will scare every quarterback in the region. Rivals has ranked him as the no. 11 overall player in the 2013 class. “Marlon is a great player and has every tool you could ever want from a corner,” Niblett said. “He has God-given speed that he’s worked to develop. Now this is his and the senior class’ team. It’s their job to leave their legacy behind.” More questions exist on the other side of the ball. Connor Short was a prolific passer for Hoover, and Calen Campbell was a strong running back. Combined, their yardage made up 79 percent of the 2012 offense. Receiver Michael Powers is gone after having 43 more catches and 700 more receiving yards than any other Buc last season. The hole at quarterback has not

been filled yet; Jack Hutchinson, Jay Burton and Nick Austin are competing for the job. Niblett harped on the need for consistency at this position. “We must have consistency at quarterback and refine one of those guy’s skills so we can wrap the offense around him,” Niblett said. Four offensive linemen also must be replaced. “The biggest challenge is going to be offensively maturing,” Niblett said. “If we mature and get last year out of our heads and understand it’s a new year, not looking in the rearview mirror, we have a chance to be good.” The Aug. 30 matchup with nationally ranked Colquitt County and head coach Rush Propst is the biggest game on the schedule. Propst, who won 110 games and five state titles in his time at Hoover, left

amidst personal scandal in 2008. In the past, Hoover has fared well in these nationally hyped games. “We always get a nationally ranked team on the schedule,” Niblett said. “We try to run our program as if we are a college program. We want to give kids an opportunity to experience it if they don’t get the chance to play at the college level. And for kids that will get that opportunity, it won’t be a culture shock when they get there.” Expectations are high. But Hoover has been known to match every expectation. Replacing offensive weapons and the defensive coordinator from one of the best teams in school history won’t be easy. But this team is talented, and if the Bucs can beat their old coach in the first game of the season, the rest of the state will be hard pressed to keep up.

20 • August 2013

Hoover Sun

Spain Park Jaguars 2013 Season Preview

Senior wide receiver Jourdan Walker (3) will look to help the offense reload after losing three-year starting quarterback Nick Mullens.

2013SCHEDULE Date 8/30 9/6 9/13 9/20 9/27 10/4 10/11 10/18 10/25 11/1

Opponent Austin Prattville* Chelsea* Wetumpka* Lee Montgomery Thompson* Oak Mountain* Stanhope Elmore* Pelham* Oxford *Region game

Location Home Away Home Home Away Home Away Home Away Away

Time 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m.

2012 Results: Finished 10-3 as Region 4 champions. Lost in the third round of the playoffs to CarverMontgomery, ending the season ranked No. 5 in 6A. Head Coach: Shawn Raney is entering his first season at Spain Park. Previously, he was a successful defensive coordinator at Hoover. Key Losses: QB Nick Mullens, WR M.J. Brown, WR Cade Hoffman, WR Drake Grisham, DB Je’Niah Jackson, DL Jacob Chaffin, LB Jacob Wolkow. Key Players: DL Devin Pughsley, QB Mickey Forrest, CB Austin Haight, WR Jourdan Walker.

August 2013 • 21

Raney looking to win from day one Photos courtesy of Ted Melton at Action Sports Pix, which covers Spain Park sporting events and donates 20 percent of its profits from the sale of photos to the SPHS Athletic Department. For more, visit

Senior running back Jordan Dukes heads upfield during a 2012 game.



s Spain Park prepares for the 2013 season, some familiar faces are gone, and some new faces have taken their place. Head coach Chip Lindsey and quarterback Nick Mullens, two mainstays of the program in recent years, have moved on, while Shawn Raney and Mickey Forrest are ready to fill their shoes. Lindsey accepted an off-the-field assistant job with Gus Malzahn at Auburn after three years of coaching the Jaguars. Mullens, who rewrote the Spain Park record book in his three years as a starter, graduated and will be playing at the University of Southern Mississippi. His 3,649 yards passing and 40 touchdowns with only seven interceptions last season will be hard to replace. But the Jaguars aren’t reminiscing on seasons past. Raney is busy installing his coaching philosophies in preparation for the season opener on Aug. 30. “For me as a head coach, I want to be good defensively and run the football,” Raney said. “That’s going to be our identity. I think with our

Senior linebacker Samuel Berry (34) makes a tackle last season in a 43-13 win over Central High School.

personnel on defense, we have a chance to be pretty good.” Raney is familiar with Spain Park, albeit as a rival coach. Previously, he served as Hoover’s defensive coordinator. However, Raney said his transition was easy, and he was “shocked” that no one was angry at him for switching sides of the rivalry. “It was very simple to tell you the truth because it’s the same school system,” Raney said. “The paperwork and all that stuff – I didn’t have to do anything. Basically I just changed where I drove to school each day.” Changing schools might have been easy, but helping the Jaguars form a new identity without Mullens at the helm might prove to be more difficult. Although the team returns six starters on each side of the ball, some key positions lack experience. Senior Mickey Forrest will be the starter at quarterback this season, coming in

with little experience. Jourdan Walker should help with the transition, coming off a big junior season at wide receiver. “Nick was kind of ‘that guy’ here for the last few years,” Raney said. “We have to set our own identity without him, which will be running the ball and playing defense. They’ve been known around here for slinging the ball and I don’t think we can do that now.” The defense, which is Raney’s specialty, will be led by two seniors: Devin Pughsley on the defensive line and Austin Haight in the secondary. The 2013 schedule looks a little different than normal without those pesky Hoover Bucs. Although they are off the schedule this year, Spain Park’s nemesis will be back next year. In its 11 years, Spain Park hasn’t beaten Hoover. If anyone can lead the team to that coveted victory, it’s probably Raney, who knows everything

Austin Haight dives for a tackle against Carver.

about the Bucs. “To beat them, Hoover will have to be down, and we’ll have to have one of our best teams,” Raney said. “And then the game will have to go our way. There’s not a huge difference talentwise. But there’s a big difference depth-wise.” For now, though, beating Hoover can wait. If the Jaguars can repeat some of their success last year, a Region 4 championship could be within their grasp. Raney’s main objective before the season starts is to gain trust between the players and coaches. “We’re trying to build trust right now, and I think it’s come a long way since I’ve been here,” Raney said. “It’s tough because they lost a guy they loved in Chip Lindsey. But my favorite thing is just being accepted in the school by the teachers and the other coaches and the kids. I really like the kids here.”

22 • August 2013

Hoover Sun

School House Trace Crossings to improve athletic facilities for community use Trace Crossings Elementary will enter into a Shared Space Agreement with Hoover Parks and Recreation to leave school facilities open during non-school hours for community use. Trace Crossings will be the first school in Jefferson County to formalize a Shared Space Agreement. The goal of this agreement is to increase community involvement with the school and to increase physical activity to fight childhood obesity. The Children’s Policy Council of Jefferson County recently awarded a grant to Trace Crossings Elementary that will help improve its facilities for community use. Superintendent Andy Craig, Principal Barber and Lance Weems from Hoover Parks and Recreation were present to receive the grant. Shared Space Agreements are formal agreements between a school and one or more community groups. Schools agree to open school recreation facilities after school hours to these groups under very specific guidelines. Schools gain more community participation as they increase the potential of students, staff and families to share in fitness activities. Increased physical activity is a tool

Jennifer Kilburn, executive director of Children’s Policy Council of Jefferson County; Lance Weems, Parks and Recreation, City of Hoover; Carol Barber, principal, Trace Crossings Elementary School; Andy Craig; Superintendent of Hoover City Schools; and Graham Hewitt, Children’s Policy Council of Jefferson County.

often missing when communities look for ways to decrease obesity. Trace Crossings Elementary, Hoover

Parks and Recreation, and the Children’s Policy Council worked together to create this Shared Space Agreement.

Simmons reaches for gold in math Simmons Middle School was one of 240 schools in the country to achieve Gold Level status in the 2013 Mathcounts Club program.

An artful achievement

Mathcounts is a math enrichment program designed to inspire excellence, confidence and curiosity in middle school students.

Students in the Math Club at Simmons completed six challenges during the year. The club is coached by math teacher Susan Clopton.

Grayson Vaughn’s sculpture

Grayson Vaughn, a rising freshmen at Hoover High School, won a Gold Key award for her sculpture of a guitar. The Scholastic Art and Writing Award enables her work to be considered for national-level recognition. The sculpture was one of 29 art pieces by Birmingham area students to be displayed at the Birmingham Museum of Art during Youth Art Month earlier this year.

August 2013 • 23

Sports 6U wins state

Front row: Austin Wilbanks, Brooks Grant, Ian Johnigan, Charlie Wilks, Carson McFadden, Brady Sheppard. Second row: Weston Dow, Aden Malpass and Luke Ballintine. Back row: Head Coach Jim Ballintine, Coach Shad Wilks, Coach Scott McFadden.

Twins are season, league champs The undefeated 7-year old Twins finished its season with a 12-0 record. The team went on to win the regular

season 7-year-old league championship game with a 21-10 win over the Red Sox at Shades Mountain Park.

Cowart plays for Rochester summer team University of Montevallo student and Spain Park High School graduate Dustin Cowart is part of Athletes in Action’s Rochester Ridgemen team this season in the New York Collegiate Baseball League (NYCBL). The NYCBL was founded in 1978 and is a “wood bat” development league for professional baseball. A small portion of the league’s annual budget is funded by Major League Baseball, and college players are given the opportunity to improve their skills and be evaluated by scouts. Cowart is making a contribution to the team this summer as a pitcher. The Ridgemen played

44 games through late July. Coward is a part of Athletes in Action, a ministry of Cru (formerly called Campus Crusade for Christ). Since 1966, Athletes in Action has been using sports as a platform to help people answer questions of faith. As an Athletes in Action-owned team, Ridgemen team members will be sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ with other teams in the league and ministering to the surrounding area of Webster where games are being held. For more, visit or

Hoover’s 6-year-old and under All Star team celebrates its state victory.

Hoover Softball Association’s 6-year-old and under All Star team finished the State Tournament undefeated with a 5-0 record. It faced West Mobile twice in the tournament, first in the semifinals with a win of 16-10. “This entire team is made up of All Stars inside and out,” Head Coach Chad Christian said. “They practiced hard and wanted to win state with a goal to go to the World Series.” The 6U Hoover All-Star team currently has a record of 19-2. The team played in three other tournaments in the month of June. It won the Central Area Championship with a win over Alabaster 26-14. “The girls had worked hard during practices, and every tournament they grew as a team. It was exciting to see them win the State

Tournament,” Assistant Coach John Foran said. Hoover 6U All-Stars was invited to play in the 2013 World Series in Alpharetta, Ga., in July. Team members were Rachel Cooper, Lindsey Westhoven, McKenzie Stribling, Olivia Giddens, Alaysia Mason-Lawson, Hannah Giddens, Reagan Barnes, Jesse Givens, Isabella Foran, Olivia Guenster, Kate Connell and Sydney Shirley. Coaches were John Foran, Amanda Christian, Skip Connell, Mark Westhoven and Chad Christian. The Hoover Softball Organization is open to girls ages 4-18. Registration for the fall season opens Aug. 1. For more visit -Submitted by Amanda Christian

24 • August 2013

Hoover Sun

Embracing religious brotherhood By INTISAR SERAAJ-SABREE

More about Ramadan

Peter Horn, 80-year-old retired assistant rector of Saint Stephen’s Episcopal Church, describes iftar as an “out-ofthis-world, delicious dinner.” An evening meal consumed after fasting from sunrise to sunset, iftar commonly takes places during Ramadan, the sacred month of fasting in Islam that according to this year’s calendar ends in early August. Every year since 2001, Horn has visited the Hoover Crescent Islamic Center yearround for religious outreach programs with one or two church groups. The Center encourages the community to engage in fellowship with local Muslims during these programs. Horn learned about the outreach program after he attended a seminar about Islam Participants in the Islamic outreach program line up to make an iftar plate. at the Homewood mosque Photo by Intisar Seraaj-Sabree. shortly after 9/11. Although these outreach encouraging people to ask questions According to Taufique, an imam programs are held throughout the year, that might be offensive. But the (religious leader) at the Hoover individuals and groups visiting the mosque program seeks to answer the Crescent Islamic Center, Ramadan during Ramadan stand out. community’s questions and debunk gives the whole community, including It is then that guests can experience an Muslims, a better opportunity to mysteries about Islam. unparalleled evening of sharing iftar and “Prophet Muhammad sallallahu engage with each other because conversing with local Muslims in events alayhi wa sallam [peace be upon him] Muslims are at the mosque every night organized by the Birmingham Islamic Society said that ‘in order to increase love with to pray and eat during this month. (BIS), an organization representing the Hoover, each other, eat with each other,’” said Horn said the program has been Homewood and the Fairfield mosques. Ashfaq Taufique, the primary outreach an eye-opener for him and others, Visitors can request the topic of discussion, program facilitator. “And even in the allowed them to empathize with the which in the past has covered democracy in Islam, Christian tradition breaking bread Muslim community and increased human rights in Islam, Jesus in Islam and more. together spreads love.” positivity towards the Muslim religion. One of the challenges the BIS faces is

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Starnes Publishing Recipient of 33 Alabama Press Association Better Newspaper and Advertising Contest awards in 2013

Ramadan is the month in which the Quran was revealed and the month in which healthy and able Muslims are obligated to fast from sunrise to sunset for a 29 or 30-day duration. Ramadan is a way of glorifying and thanking God for the blessings and guidance received through the Quran. However, the dates of Ramadan change every year because it follows the lunar calendar.

Ramadan program details Dates left for scheduling a visit during the Ramadan outreach program are Aug. 1-7. Programs begin at 6:30 p.m. To reserve a visiting date, contact Rita Taufique at 879-4247 or at rita. For more, visit

During Ramadan, visitors are also allowed to observe the early evening prayer (Magrib), which precedes a discussion and presentation about Islam. Observing Muslims pray usually sparks discussion right away, according to Taufique. “It is a highly needed activity for Muslims to do because we do not have the machinery of the media on our hands [or] the ultimate resources,” Taufique said. “We can just light one candle at a time.” Since 1997, Taufique has collaborated with Farook Chandiwala, the founder of the BIS outreach program, to open its doors to anyone willing to learn, share and connect with the local Muslim community through educational dialogues. Over the years, various groups have attended the programs, including FBI members, schools, churches and the Birmingham Museum of Fine Art. Taufique said that the relationship between the Muslim community and the larger Birmingham community is improving every year because of this program. “My faith in humanity has renewed every year,” Taufique said.

August 2013 • 25 FAMILY

CONTINUED from page 1 year’s team, motivated the boys early on. “I remember growing up I would always see this football and this ring and I thought they were cool, but I didn’t really understand what they meant,” Ryan said. “I just kind of figured it’d be cool to have a massive ring like that one day.” That thought was always in the back of Ryan’s mind, and it grew stronger in his early youth as he systematically attempted to play every sport imaginable before honing in on his true passion – tennis. “Athletics runs deep in our roots,” he added. “It’s not just Dad’s legacy – our grandfather was a skilled athlete who also coached football. Nathan and I realized pretty quickly that we needed to pick a sport.” The twins admit that at first their performances on the court were nothing to write home about. By their middle school years, however, the boys had begun to make names for themselves. Eventually, their USTA junior circuit travel demands necessitated they quit Briarwood Christian School and begin homeschooling. By the 10th grade, however, this academic environment had lost its luster, and the boys had the luxury of picking from a number of Over the Mountain schools eager to recruit the young tennis talents. Ryan admits it was Spain Park’s likely shot at a state championship that finally persuaded them to enroll there. Following high school athletic association rules, the White twins had to sit out of their sport for one year after enrolling in Spain Park, given their decision to attend a school outside their zoned area. By their senior year, the twins proved they’d made the right decision – and that it was worth the wait. “We were able to pull off a very slim victory over Mountain Brook in the state finals,” Nathan said. “We played doubles, and both teams had to win that last match for us to clinch the win – even then, it was only by 1 point.” That point made all the difference, and Milton was there to see his twin sons, whom

he’d seen progress in the sport since their tween years, win their own state championship rings. Adding to the glory was the fact that this state championship, achieved in 2007, was the first boy’s state title in Spain Park’s history. “We both agreed it was nice to finally have our own rings because, while many of our father’s accomplishments we cannot equal, we feel like we’ve equaled him in this regard,” said Nathan. “And of course, ours are twice as big.” It made for three in the family, and a fourth would come soon after. But Milton passed away before he could witness Tripp don his ring for the first time. Tripp, currently a senior at Hoover High, earned his own state championship ring this past autumn for his film work about the reigning 6A State Football Champs, the Hoover Bucs. Last fall, Tripp co-produced a weekly webbased show of Friday night football clips that he posted to No stranger to sports media and filming, Tripp spent the past two football seasons operating the stadium’s upper deck camera, which provided game footage to be streamed online. This past year, as the Bucs post-season hopes became brighter, Tripp helped develop photo-montage videos for fans and players alike. Set to music and produced in an upbeat format, these videos found loyal appreciation, particularly from the players themselves. When the Bucs won the state title, they credited Tripp and his co-producer as playing an instrumental role in the team’s success. “I work as a nurse in a surgery center in sports medicine,” said the boys’ mother, Paige White Pattillo. “We get a lot of athletes, and I often ask them if they have one of these huge rings. I tell them, ‘My son did too, but he didn’t play football.’ They instantly mention Tripp and say things like, ‘Oh man, he and Will got the best footage of me making my touchdown. They knew the guys helped them look good and that made me thankful. As a mom, I was proud that the team members valued their contribution.” And now, with four in the family, Milton’s sons boast the hardware to extend his heavyhanded legacy.


CONTINUED from page 1 According to school officials, the system has seen a decline in revenues, including local, state and federal funds, coupled with an increase in student enrollment. Since 2008, system revenues on a per-student basis have decreased from $13,715 to $11,356 for the fiscal year that ended September 30, 2012, school officials said. The decline represents a cumulative operating revenue loss for the same four-year period of $96.8 million, with revenues for fiscal year 2012 down $31.6 million compared to the fiscal year 2008 level. According to Hoover City Schools Superintendent Andy Craig, the school board’s 2012-2013 revenues are $149 million and expenditures are $166 million. The downward trend must be addressed, Craig said. “Going forward, the fundamental question is do we guarantee transportation to all students outside of two miles and absorb the unfunded costs while dismantling our investment in core teaching and learning?” Craig said. “I think the answer is ‘No.’” Brewer, a resident of Lake Crest subdivision, said she would like the board to consider alternatives to the transportation cut including changing the bus coverage area to lessen the cost and charging tuition to those who don’t pay property taxes. “I am the first to say I appreciate the quality of education provided through the Hoover schools and want to save money for the classroom, but I also want the officials to look at alternatives, take suggestions seriously, and give good reasons why things will or won’t work,” she said. Scott James, a resident of Huntington Park subdivision, will have two children in a Hoover elementary school this year and eventually four in three different Hoover schools. James said halting the bus service would leave him and his wife “logistically at a loss on how it would work.” But he said he is now “very encouraged but not surprised” the board is seeking public input. “I think our school board is a very reasonable crew. Given this decision is going to have such a significant impact on the families in our community, I think it’s a very good idea for the

HCS public hearing Aug. 8, 7 p.m. Spain Park High School

board to refrain from making a unilateral decision on behalf of us,” James said. Hoover city School Board member Derrick Murphy, who cast the lone vote against the bus service cut, has a son at Hoover High School and daughter at Deer Valley Elementary. Murphy said his son “uses the bus sparingly” because of extensive involvement with extracurricular activities, and his daughter is transported via carpool and bus in the mornings. Murphy said in light of declining revenues, it is the board’s responsibility to evaluate every aspect of the system to make sure education remains the number one priority. “At the same time, I believe an issue with this great an impact deserves dialogue and discussion because the busing system is vital for our students that use the service,” Murphy said. “Being able to think about things, being patient about things is very important.” Hoover City School Board member Earl Cooper said he speaks for himself and not the entire school board when saying there “seems to be some in the community who understand the system’s financial situation and strategic implications of that on the students’ classroom learning, and some who don’t.” “To continue down this path of deficient spending – an unsustainable business model – has direct implications on the classroom that could happen very soon,” Cooper said. “This includes having to build an additional school or schools to be potentially occupied as early as 2016 should system enrollment continue at the rate it has over the last five years.” Cooper said he also wants the public to understand that cutting bus service is only one of a few things the superintendent can propose to slow down deficient spending without cutting into classroom spending. “Do I know how this will end up? No. And are there a lot of smart people in the community that will come forward with smart, creative ideas to help mitigate some of the concerns? Absolutely,” Cooper said. “All we can do is hear the people out, study and make the best decision for the students because that’s the charge of this board.”

26 • August 2013

Hoover Sun

Community Calendar Hoover Events

Comedy Club Stardome 444-0008

Aug. 2-4: Earthquake Aug. 7-8, 11: Bryan McCree Aug. 9-10: Pauly Shore Aug. 14: The Sullivan and Son Comedy Tour Aug. 16-18: George Wallace Aug. 30-Sept. 1: Nephew Tommy

Moonlight on the Mountain Aug. 1: Craig Carothers and Don Henry ($15) Aug. 3: The Hollows, Opener Daniel Lawrence Walker Aug. 5: Open Mic Night Aug. 8: The Clay States, Opener Patrick Reed Aug. 9: Jason Bailey Band Aug. 10: Jessica Campbell, Hannah Miller and Sara Beth Go Aug. 15: The Westbound Rangers, Opener Franco and The Dreadnought Aug. 16: The Beatlads: A Moonlight Benefit ($10) Aug. 17: Dan Farmer and Janet Hall O’Neill Aug. 19: Open Mic Night Aug. 22: Will Stewart and Jon Poor ($10) Aug. 23: The Hillary Reynolds Band, Mic Harrison & Kevin Abernathy Aug. 24: Hope Cassity and the Red Clay Review ($10) Aug. 30: Stephen Sebastian Band, Opener Carissa Leigh All shows are at 7:30 p.m. and cost $12 unless otherwise noted. Open Mic Night is $5.

Aug. 1-7: Ramadan Feast. Observe evening prayer at sunset at the Hoover Crescent Islamic Center. A brief presentation on Muslims and Islam and a question and answer session will precede the dinner. Open to public. To make a reservation, call 879-4247 ext. 6 or email

Aug. 9: Elder Abuse and Fraud Prevention Seminar. Hosted by Rep. Paul DeMarco and Hoover Senior Center. 12:15 p.m. Call 739-6700 for reservations.

Aldridge Gardens. 8-10 a.m. Visit Aug. 19: Hoover City Schools First Day. Visit

Dinner. The Wynfrey Hotel, 6 p.m. Learn more about Sozo Children’s The Village Project in Uganda. $100. Visit

Aug. 15: Meet the Teacher. Shades Mountain Elementary. Noon-2:30 p.m.

Aug. 20: Lunch and Learn. Hoover Senior Center. Noon. Call 739-6700.

Aug. 24: Back to School Bash. Bluff Park Baptist Church. 5-7 p.m. Call 822-3240.

Aug. 15: Feast of Assumption. Prince of Peace Catholic School. Call 824-7886.

Aug. 4: Registration Day. Shades Mountain Christian School. 1-4 p.m. 2113 Old Rocky Ridge Road. Call 987-3376.

Aug. 16: Casserole Cook-off. Hoover Senior Center. 12:30 p.m. Call 739-6700.

Aug. 22: Summer Concert Series with Foxxy Fatts & Company. Aldridge Gardens. 6-8 p.m. Visit

Aug. 24: 5th Annual Black Tee Championship. Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail at Ross Bridge. 1 p.m. Call 949-3089 or email

Aug. 22: Propagator Club Reception & Live Concert Series. Aldridge Gardens. 5-8 p.m. Visit

Aug. 26: Coupon Book Sale Begins. Deer Valley Elementary. Call 439-3300.

Aug. 6: National Night Out. Target Store, The Grove Shopping Center. 6-9 p.m. Visit, or

Aug. 16: Antique or Not Expo. Hoover Senior Center. Noon. Call 739-6700. Aug. 17: Aldridge Gardens Bird Walk with Dr. Richard & Patricia Ryel.

Aug. 24: 3rd Annual Sozo Children

Aug. 27: Horizons Luncheon. Hoover Senior Center. 11 a.m. Call 739-6700.

Area Events Aug. 1: 3rd Annual Taste of Birmingham. The Club, 1 Robert S. Smith Drive, 6-9 p.m. For tickets call 767-9219 or email Visit Aug. 1-25: Alabama Civil Rights Landmarks - 50 Years Later. Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Regular admission prices. DJ Boyd’s photography exhibition “Civil Rights Landmarks - 50 Years Later” will be on display in the Milestones Gallery. Call 3289696 or visit

email or visit Aug. 2-4: Sales Tax Holiday. State, county and city governments will participate. Visit SalesTaxHol.cfm. Aug. 2-6: Birmingham Barons Baseball vs. Pensacola Blue Wahoos. Regions Field, Friday & Monday-Tuesday 7:05 p.m., Saturday 6:30 p.m., Sunday 3 p.m. Call 988-3200 or visit

Aug. 1-30: Titans of the Ice Age – IMAX. McWane Science Center. 10:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. Adult tickets are $8.50 and $7.50 for children and seniors. Call 714-8300 or visit

Aug. 11: CDF Community Fest. Children’s Dance Foundation, 2 p.m. Free admission. This family event includes an interactive drum circle, kids’ craft zone, outdoor moonwalk, dance performances, food and drinks, and a silent auction. Call 870-0073 or visit

Aug. 1-30: Birmingham Ghost Walk. Linn Park. Fridays and Saturdays 8 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Tickets $15 for adults and $7 for children. Call Wolfgang Poe at 440-2720,

Aug. 12: Glow for a Cure. Highland Park Golf Course, 4-10 p.m. Tickets are $200 per golfer and $25 for spectators, and include a BBQ dinner. A night golf tournament to

benefit Alzheimer’s of Central Alabama’s research grant program. Call 871-7970 or email Aug. 15: Mentor/Mentee Bridge Series. Birmingham Duplicate Bridge Club. Games $6 for members, $7 for visitors Membership joining fee is $6. For more, call 560-0706. Aug. 16-25: Birmingham Restaurant Week. Featured restaurants will offer special two and/or three-course prixfixe lunch and/or dinner menus. Visit Aug. 17: Boiling N’ Bragging. Otey’s Tavern, 6-9 p.m. Tickets $20 in advance, $25 at the door, free for kids. Benefitting Critical Care Transport at Children’s of Alabama. Register online at Call 332-7571 or visit Aug. 21-25: UniverSoul Circus. Legion Field Stadium, Wednesday-Thursday

7:30 p.m.; Friday 10:30 a.m. & 7:30 p.m.; Saturday noon, 4 & 7:30 p.m.; Sunday 1, 4 & 7 p.m. UniverSoul Circus is rated as one of the top three circuses in America. Call 800-745-3000, or visit universoulcircus. com or Aug. 23: 5th Annual Sips for CF Wine Tasting Competition. Kress Building, 301 19th Street North, 7 p.m. Tickets $25 the day of, or $20 in advance by visiting or calling 871-9140. Email Aug. 23-25: 15th Annual Sidewalk Moving Picture Festival. Alabama Theatre. Friday 8-10 p.m., Saturday & Sunday 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Most events are free, but admission to certain events ranges from $15-$92. Call 324-0888 or visit Aug. 24: 33rd Annual Hope Gala. This is the American Cancer Society’s largest fundraiser in Birmingham. Call 930-8883 or visit

August 2013 • 27

Artists on the Bluff

Hoover Library Events Aug. 1-31: Bluff Park Art Show Preview. Preview works by selected artists from the Bluff Park Art Show in the Friends Gallery on the Theatre Level. Call 444-7888. Aug. 1: First Thursday Fiction Book Club. 10 a.m. Theatre Level Meeting Rooms. Join us for a discussion of Remarkable Creatures by Tracy Chevalier. Refreshments provided. Call 444-7820. Aug. 1: Workforce Investment Act. 11 a.m. Adult Programming Room. Learn about funding for education and career training. Reservations required. Call 444-7816.

author Wendy Wax will lead a trivia game and sign her new book, While We Were Watching Downton Abbey. Dress in your best Downton-era attire and enter our costume contest. Tea party catered by Coffee-ol-ogy Café. Call 444-7821. Aug 17-18: Downtown Abbey Season 2 Viewing Party. The Library Theatre. Saturday 10:30 a.m. Episodes 1-2; 12:30 p.m. Break for Lunch; 2 p.m. Episodes 3-5; 5 p.m. Episode 6; Sunday 2:30 p.m. Episodes 7-9. Call 444-7820.

Aug. 4: Global Cuisine @ The Plaza. 2:30 p.m. Polynesian foods and coffees. Complimentary samples provided. Call 444-782.

Aug. 17: DIY @ The Plaza: Sell Your Home for Top Dollar with Easy and Inexpensive Repairs. 10:30 a.m. Jones-Warren Construction and Home Depot show you simple things you can do to your home to maximize its resale value. Call 444-782.

Aug. 8: Second Thursday Fiction Book Club. 10 a.m. Theatre Level Meeting Rooms. Author Michael Morris will join us to discuss his novel, Man in the Blue Moon. Refreshments provided. Call 444-7820.

Aug. 20: Helping Hands. 2:30 p.m. Adult Programming Room. Stop by to make newspaper rolls that will be donated to a local humane society. Teens and adults welcome. Call 444-7840.

Aug. 8: Playing @ The Plaza: Carlos Pino. 6:30 p.m. Jazz guitarist Carlos Pino and his band play a mixture of classic jazz, as well as original compositions. Call 444-7821. Aug. 9: Last Day for Children’s Summer Reading. This is the final date to redeem prizes. Call 444-7833 or visit Aug. 10: Purl @ The Plaza. 3-5 p.m. Crafty meeting of all fiber enthusiasts. Bring your yarn and knit, crochet or embroider. Call 444-7821. Aug. 11: Instrumetnalists @ The Plaza: Roberto Verdi. 2:30 p.m. Flamenco guitarist Roberto Verdi will play the music of Spain. Call 444-7821. Aug. 13: (New) Daytime Nonfiction Book Club. 10:30 a.m. Adult Programming Room. Manhunt: The Twelveday Chase for Lincoln’s Killer by James L. Swanson. Call 444-7816. Aug. 15: (New) Author Time @ Hoover Public Library: Lisa Jackson. Theatre Level Meeting Rooms. Lisa Jackson will discuss her newest novel, Tell Me, via Skype. Visit to RSVP or call 444-7820. Aug. 16: After Hours @ The Plaza: Downton Abbey Party and Book Signing. 7-9 p.m. 2013 Southern Voices

Aug. 21: No Jacket Required Nonfiction Book Group. 10:30 a.m. Adult Programming Room. Share your recently read nonfiction title in this month’s genre: Food Lit. Call 444-7840. Aug. 22: Nonfiction Book Group. 7 p.m. Allen Board Room. Blood and Thunder by Hampton Sides. Call 444-7816. Aug. 23: Friday Night @ The Movies. 6:30 p.m. The Library Theatre. Follow Merida, a skilled archer and headstrong daughter of King Fergus and Queen Elinor, as she defies an age-old custom. (2012, PG, 100 minutes). Call 444-7888. Aug. 24: Write Club. 10:30 a.m. Theatre Level Meeting Rooms. Mingle and share with your fellow amateur writers. 444-7820 Aug. 26: Monday at the Movies. 2 and 6:30 p.m. The Library Theatre. During a preview tour, a theme park suffers a major power breakdown that allows its cloned dinosaur exhibits to run amok (1993, PG-13, 127 minutes). Call 444-7820. Aug. 27: Frugalistics: Coupon Swap. 2:30 p.m. Adult Programming Room. Bring coupons you don’t need and swap for ones you do. Call 444-7840.

571 Park Avenue

Drawing and Painting, taught by Rollina Oglesby. Charcoal, Pastel, Oil and Acrylic with Model or Photo on Wednesdays, 9 a.m.-noon or Thursdays, 5:30-8:30 p.m. $120 + supplies (former students $95). Email or call 7338939 to register. Painting and Mixed Media, taught by Rik Lazenby. $120 per month. Adult classes Tuesdays or Thursdays, 9 a.m.-noon. Call 281-5273 to register or visit Acrylic Painting, taught by Jayne Morgan. $40 per class including supplies. Mondays, 5:30-7:30 p.m. for high school; Tuesdays, 5:30-7:30 p.m. for high school; or Thursdays 6:30-8:30 p.m. for adults. Also teaching summer painting camps for children. Visit or call 902-5226. Calligraphy, taught by Deb Warnat. Beginning Copperplate Class Thursdays, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Visit or call 243-0576. Kiln Formed Glass: Fusing & Slumping, taught by Deborah Ballog. Wednesday and Saturday, 9 a.m.-

noon. Prices vary. Email deborah@studio-three. net or call 999-3194 Jewelry/Beginning Silversmithing, taught by Cecily Chaney. Aug. 24-25, Aug 31-Sept. 1; Saturdays 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Sundays 10 a.m.-4 p.m. $480 with a materials fee of $100 and supply fee of $50. Additional silver for other projects may be purchased from instructor. Call 223-4514. Photography/ Blue Moon Studios. Visit, call 995-3791 or check Facebook for class schedule. Woodworking, taught by David Traylor. Offering workshops in furniture making. All skill levels welcome. Also teaching Summer Woodworking Camps for children. Visit or call 531-4751. Beginning Zentangle, taught by Darla Williamson. $35 per class includes supplies. Aug. 20 and 29, 1 p.m.; Aug. 22 and 27, 6 p.m. Visit tangledstones. com or call 305-2082.

Hoover Chamber of Commerce Aug. 1: Economic Development Committee Meeting. 8:00 a.m.

Office. 4:30 p.m.

Aug. 1: Ribbon Cutting. The View at Lake Cyrus, 5098 Parkside Circle, Hoover 35244. 11:00 a.m. Call Brian at 983-2455 for directions.

Aug. 15: Hoover Chamber Luncheon. Hoover Country Club. 11:30 a.m. networking, Noon luncheon. Please make reservations by Aug. 12. $20, $22 without reservations.

Aug. 5: Ribbon Cutting. Focus MD, 3300 Cahaba Road, Suite 202, Mountain Brook. 5 p.m. Joint ribbon cutting with Vestavia Hills and Mountain Brook Chambers of Commerce. Call 769-0649 or email

Aug. 22: Business after Hours. Birchall at Ross Bridge Apartment Homes, 100 Birchall Lane, Hoover 35226. 5:30-7 p.m. Contact Carrie Peters at 945-7488 or or visit

Aug. 8: Coffee & Contacts. Danberry at Inverness, 235 Inverness Center Drive, Hoover. 7:30-9 a.m. Call 443-9500, email lori@danberryatinverness. com or visit

Aug. 26: Eighteenth Annual Hoover Chamber Golf Tournament. Riverchase Country Club 8:30 a.m. shotgun start. Call 988-5672.

Aug. 12: Chamber Board Meeting. 4:30 p.m. Aug. 14: Ambassador Meeting. Chamber

Aug. 27: Minority Business Council Meeting Brown Bag Luncheon Meeting. Chamber Office. Noon.

Summer Fun Photo Contest

Capture the fun of summer with your camera, and send us your favorite shots of the backyard, lake, beach, mountain, neighborhood, and wherever you and your family are. Our staff will choose the images that most colorfully capture a summer experience. Prizes will be awarded to contest winners. Category One: Any summer fun photo Category Two: A summer fun photo displaying a copy of Hoover Sun wherever you are To enter, email your photos in a jpeg format to Please send high quality images and include a caption and photo credit. Only four entry photos are allowed per person.


Deadline for entries is August 11, 2013. We will publish the winners in the September issue as well as post them on our Facebook page and

28 • August 2013

Hoover Sun

Hsun vol 1 iss 11 august 2013 all  

news, sports and community news source for Hoover Alabama

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