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Chickasaw Jerod Tate composer
April 2012 Vol. 2 Issue 9
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4 Wants vs. Needs
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Wants vs. Needs It was a cool November day and Caroline Lawson was taking part in an ACT Workshop, when all of the sudden, she was sideswiped by a presentation from Compassion International. The communicator spoke of disadvantaged children in need of clean water so they could have the opportunity to grow up healthy. In Ada we can walk up to a faucet, give it a twist and out flows water suitable for drinking. We even have parks that constantly shoot this fresh liquid 20 feet into the air and we don’t think anything of it’s value. Lawson’s heart was hit hard when she learned of children who are suffering because they do not have this basic need we fail to even recognize on a daily basis. Most people see needs like this, shake their heads in a moment of sadness and then carry on with their lives. Lawson could not just carry on as if she hadn’t seen anything. She immediately spoke to her mother and then with the help of two friends, got down to business. Caroline, Chase Bowker and Charlie Gibson set their goal to help as many children as they could by raising money for Compassion’s Water of Life System. Each water filter system is designed to clean 1.3 million gallons of water and are good for a child and his or her family for 40 years. In just two months, these three high school students were able to 4 • www.adahub.com
by: Adam Flanagan
raise close to $25,000.00, which is enough to purchase 484 filter systems. So how did they accomplish this? Gibson said, “It was time consuming and exhausting, but knowing we were doing this for someone else really helped us push through”. It was organizing taco suppers to silent auctions, offerings to personal donations, lunches, movie nights, a basketball shooting contest sponsored by Ada Ford and contests between classes throughout the Ada School System that led to the successful outcome of this tremendous fundraiser. The thee high school students led a campaign called “Chains for Change” among the campuses where children bought strips of paper for fifty cents, and each classroom tried to see who could make the biggest chain. Mrs. Feiler’s class from the Ada Junior High linked together a whopping $633.00 worth of those little strips, forming the largest chain for the win. Was all of this easy? Bowker said, “There were times we felt these events would not be successful and we started feeling nervous. We just had to keep encouraging each other through the entire process”. Most high school students, or adults for that matter, wouldn’t give much thought to what is going on in a country on the other side of the globe. What caused these three teens to step up and how, with a hectic schedule, did they keep up the momentum to follow
through? Charlie quoted Proverbs 16:3 to sum up the how and why. “Commit your works to the Lord and your plans will be established.” Another thing that helped was expressed by Lawson in these words, “People just kept coming up and asking how they could contribute. It was motivating to have adults look at us and want to be a part of what we were doing”. The entire two months really opened the eyes to these three teens of what was really happening in other countries. Not only has it helped them see needs afar, it has made them more aware of things going on right in front of them. They have put some efforts into helping a local cancer patient along with some other local organizations recently as well. It is incredible to see what three high school students can accomplish in sixty days. Lawson wants to see how the filters actually impact the families overseas and is thinking about the possibility of a trip. Chase says, “This has opened up my heart to see needs of the person right next to me when I sit down for lunch to those across the world. It has helped me realize wants versus needs”. Are you motivated to help? You can provide a water filter for a child and his or her family by donating $55.00 today. Just visit http://www.compassion.com/water-filters. htm and you can play your part in meeting the basic needs of others. ■
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Just go for it. by: Adam Flanagan
Roasted Garlic Vinaigrette 1 cup of roasted garlic golden brown (reserve the oil from roasting)
1 cup of red wine vinegar
(regina brand I find is the best)
1 teaspoon of chili flakes 1 qtr. cup of tea john mustard 1 qtr. cup of fresh basil lightly chopped or ripped apart 1 tbsp coarse ground black pepper 1 tbsp kosher salt 1 qtr. cup of light brown sugar 1.5 cups of salad oil (canola oil is the best I think)
Put all ingredients except oil in a food processor and blend on high for 2 minutes. Start adding the oil slowly and this is your roasted garlic vinaigrette. It’s not only good on any salad but it makes great slaw and marinade for steaks. To me I don’t think you get any better!
Daniel Eul chef Daniel is the chef at Oak Hills Country Club in Ada, Oklahoma. He was born in 1965 in New York at West Point Military Academy and since then, has found himself peppered across the United States. To be closer to family, he wound up here in Ada in 2009. Now we get to enjoy his cooking expertise!
We have all seen something on television that has piqued our interest and has moved us to want to get up and give it a try. For me, it’s usually on a food channel at 11:00pm, and next thing you know I am standing over the stove sautéing a pork chop. Things were a little different for Arron Edwards, owner of Whiterock Fitness, when he saw a show called Ninja Warrior. Ninja Warrior is a show in which competitors attempt to complete a four stage obstacle course. It is shot on location in Japan and is now making it’s way to America. Competitions generally start in the daytime and continue until completed regardless of weather or darkness. Applicants are interviewed or auditioned and trial rounds are held to test their physical ability until the field is narrowed to 100 competitors. Edward’s was instantly drawn in by the feats of strength and agility that were being performed and thought to himself, “I should just go for it”. And so he did. After a marathon viewing session of the show, Edwards began to draw out the various obstacles that were on the course. With his background in physical training, he took the time to breakdown the different aspects of the obstacles so he would know what muscles and movements he would need to train to be successful. This all happened about two years ago, and at the time, there were no tryouts being held to even get a chance to be on the show. Edward’s said, “I just wanted to try the workouts. Training should be fun and this looked like a challenge to me”. Midway through February of 2012, Edwards got a call from a friend who told him there were trials being held in Dallas on March 15. At this point, all interested applicants had to submit a video displaying their physical fitness by March 6 for pre-selection. Edwards put his video together, sent it in and waited to see if he was in. Several days went by and he received a call for an over the phone interview. A few days after that, he received another call saying he made it through the pre-selection process and he would have a chance at the course on March 15. With only ten days to prepare, Edwards packed in short intense workouts. He practiced jumping side to side (a big part of one of the first obstacles), lifting a tractor tire and lots of bar work for grip training. I witnessed him executing chin ups with just two fingers from each hand. Grip strength is crucial if you want to master the course and become a ninja warrior. Training came to an end and now it was time for Edwards to make his way to Dallas for the first stage of competition. To move to stage 2, competitors must finish in the top 30. After, stage 2, it’s on to Las Vegas to compete for $500,000. The Regional Competitions were filmed in Dallas, so if you flip over to G4 in May, you will see Arron competing. “I never want to get bored with my workouts. Fitness and exercise should be fun for those who want to make it a part of their lifestyle,” Arron says. You never know, Ada might be home to the first American Ninja Warrior! ■ www.adahub.com • 7
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Provided by Moon-Baker Agency In July 2011, Heather Beam, Tina Feezel, Lashun Huff, Christi McDown and Kami Weems had the opportunity to travel to an orphanage in Cap Haitien, Haiti. Haiti has over 490,000 orphans and another 300,000 children in slavery, and 1 in 7 children die before their 5th birthday, most due to preventable diseases. The team, led by Kim Paul and Sheri Dennis, thought they were doing a good thing by traveling to Haiti, visiting and loving the orphaned children. The women soon realized the children were doing more for them. Their eyes were opened for the first time to extreme poverty, seeing things they knew in their minds existed, a passion was sparked in each of their hearts. It was so evident in each of their minds, a country that was so close to America, surrounded by many thriving countries that are full of all the abundances and freedoms, Haiti’s reality was hopelessness, poverty and tragedy. Within the first hours of being in the poorest country in the western hemisphere and parentless children jumping into their arms, wanting nothing more than their love, they each had a deep realization of how small our world really is. In every direction they looked, they saw nothing but poverty and devastation, but in every child’s eyes they looked into, they saw love and they saw HOPE. In the poorest of situations, the children of Haiti have HOPE. Children are the future; the children of today will change our world of tomorrow. But they realized, these orphaned children filled with HOPE, cannot do it on their own, they needed our help. After countless trips over the past 8 months, these women grew to love the children, people and country of Haiti. This is where Cap-Haitien Hearts for Hope was born. Cap-Haitien Hearts for Hope is a
501C3 (pending) non-profit organization dedicated to the orphaned children of Haiti, to provide them with guidance and hope for their future and to bring awareness of these children’s importance to people around the world. This will happen by showing each child that they have someone, somewhere that cares about them, that will encourage them, that will let them know they believe in them. Our initial vision is a feeding program, infant feeding program, medical program and HOPE fund (scholarship program) for each child. When the women realized over 80% of the Haitian population is unemployed, graduating from secondary school (comparable to our High School) still is not enough to prepare these children for their life. To help break the cycle of the orphans in Haiti, we must prepare these children to be able to support and care for their future families and to stay healthy to raise their own children. To help Haiti’s future, we must not release the orphans back onto the street where they came from, unprepared, and destined to fail, but to give these children HOPE and guidance for their future. Our long-term vision is to create a HOPE village. For the children who are
not reunited with their biological family or adopted into their forever family. They will be given the opportunity to reside in a small, permanent home of no more than 10 children, with a “house parent” as the caregiver. Orphans who might otherwise be street children, will be able to grow up with the love and support of their own family. “Every child has the right to grow up in a family environment.” The Convention on the Rights of the Child – UNICEF. Cap Haitien Hearts for Hope believes this is the most beneficial model for a child to be raised instead of the typical orphanage institution. We are often asked why are we doing this; why Haiti and not America? Our easiest answer is because this is what our hearts are being called to do. The best thing we can say to everyone is to get involved in something, something bigger than yourself, help the world and the people in it. Listen to your heart and whatever it is being called to do, follow it. It will bless you more than the blessing you can give someone or something in need. If your heart is calling, or you would like more information on Cap Haitien Hearts for Hope, you may contact us at email@example.com. ■ www.adahub.com • 11
Chickasaw Jerod Tate composer
by: Brandon Frye
12 â€˘ www.adahub.com
hen some people hear the word “composer,” images of Mozart, Beethoven, and Bach flood into their minds—geniuses toiling away by candlelight, miraculous visions of music pouring from hand to parchment. However, what they might not realize is that sometimes it can begin much simpler than that. A great work of music can start with a simple question: what do you find cool? It’s a philosophy that’s brilliant in its simplicity; and it’s how Chickasaw composer Jerod Tate begins every composition. Though Tate didn’t begin composing until he had his degree in piano performance from Northwestern University, music had always been a part of his life. Both of his parents were involved in the arts—his father a pianist and opera singer and his mother a dancer and choreographer. At eight years old, he knew he wanted to be a musician and began piano lessons. He studied solo performance, yet had a true passion for collaboration and large-scale dramatic works. All of this came together when his mother commissioned him, upon graduation, to compose the score for a ballet based on native themes. Being Chickasaw, on his father’s side, Tate was always fascinated and proud of his culture, and the opportunity to compose an entire ballet score based on native legends and
stories could not have excited him more. Since then, Tate has worked almost exclusively on large dramatic works— ballets, symphonies, and operas. These are what fascinate him most and provide the greatest challenges. And that is no surprise. Growing up around the world of ballet and opera, he has an inherent dramatic streak, yet is still laid back enough to be able to begin a composition with a simple question: what’s cool? After he figures out what he wants to do—what will make the piece enjoyable for him—he decides where everything should go, developing the pacing and architecture of the work, making sure that the most interesting parts are spread out evenly. After that, it’s merely filling in the details. He has a way of making something so difficult sound so incredibly easy. A lot of the time, the cool and interesting parts derive from native themes; this is what makes him a Chickasaw composer. He is not just a Chickasaw composer because he is Chickasaw—it is because his work is infused with the themes of his people. It wasn’t until recently, the 20th century, that artists of all kinds—painters, sculptors, composers, and writers— began to identity their work with a particular region, nationality, or culture. However, if you look at the work of
Beethoven, it is very German. Debussy is very French. And Jerod Tate is very Chickasaw. He utilizes native themes, but abstracts them, breaking them down and then re-visioning them within his own concept of the world and music. He takes something old and makes it new. His work is a tapestry, weaving together music, poetry, and the visual arts, yet also the past, present, and even the future. This makes for powerful, dramatic, and thoroughly enjoyable compositions that are large enough to fully immerse yourself in, wrapping the music and stories around you like a blanket. There should be plenty of chances to experience his work for yourself; he has many projects planned for the future, including an opera based on a Chickasaw legend and a native ballet for the Oklahoma City Ballet. And his venues are far and wide; in the past, you could hear his work at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. or the Ataloa Theater here in Ada, OK, just to name a few. He is composer-in-residence for the Chickasaw Nation, but also teaches composition to high school students are the Chickasaw Summer Arts Academy and is Artistic Director for the Chickasaw Chamber Music Festival. So keep your eyes and ears open for his name and work, so you can experience Tate’s own re-visioning of the world, and discover what he thinks is cool. ■ www.adahub.com • 13
y a E $
g n i Liv r
Saving Money on Automobiles
Gas prices are creeping closer and closer to four dollars a gallon and with the cost of repairs and insurance, owning a car is expensive. This month I’ll go over some easy tips that can help you save more money on owning a car. Car insurance is you and your car’s safety net, you hope you never have to use it, but if you do you’re glad it is there. However every time that bill arrives, I assume you’re like me, and it seems like such a chore to pay it. Car insurance doesn’t have to something you dread paying if you take the time to look for ways to save. By comparing the rates from several different companies, you should be able to find savings while still getting the coverage you need. Additionally if you insure all the cars in your household with one company, you will see discounts applied to each bill. Another discount you might be eligible for is combining your home or rental insurance, which could reduce both bills significantly. Most insurance companies offer a variety of discounts ranging from good student to loyalty programs. I recommend discussing your options with your insurance agent. You can also see significant savings in your insurance bills if you attend a defensive driving course. These courses can range in price from $20-50 depending on the course. However most insurance companies honor this discount for three years. I’ve seen a savings of roughly $100 a year from the class I took recently that cost only $20. I also recommend that you review what coverage you need for the vehicle you drive. A good rule of thumb is if your car is worth less than ten times the annual premiums, you should consider dropping collision and comprehensive insurance. The money you save could eventually be used towards the purchase of a new car. Car repairs are costly and usually occur at the time we least expect them. Ben Franklin once said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” This statement is true not only with your health, but also your car. Preventative maintenance is the most cost effective way 14 • www.adahub.com
to repair your car. By following your owner’s manual and the recommended maintenance schedule you could spend $200 now and save $5,000 down the road. The recommended maintenance schedule also includes information about how many miles should be driven between oil changes. The rule used to be every 3,000 miles, which at $40 a pop that is roughly $160 a year. Most new vehicles only need their oil changed every 6,000-10,000 miles, which could reduce your costs by half each year. If you’re brave and knowledgeable, changing your own oil is also another cost saving option. The average American spends over $2,000 a year on gasoline, and that number is only increasing. However, a few simple steps can help improve your gas mileage and reduce the amount you’re paying at the pump. The first step is to change the way you drive; driving consistently without sudden acceleration or stops will greatly improve your gas consumption. Maintaining a constant speed on the highway with the use of cruise control will also help with gas mileage. Additionally if you drive slower, you will see an increase in the number of miles per gallon. If you can avoid areas of heavy traffic or numerous traffic lights, you will see an improvement in your gas mileage. Sometimes the shortest route is not the most economically route, especially during peak traffic times. Combining your trips into one will also reduce the amount of gas you use each week, so try to run all your errands at one time. Idle cars uses a significant amount of gas and if your car will be idling for more than 30 seconds, it is more efficient to turn it off. Car maintenance is crucial to gas mileage efficiency. Driving on tires that are aligned and properly inflated will reduce the amount of friction and could increase gas mileage by 10%. A dirty air filter reduces the efficiency of your engine and replacing it will also increase gas mileage. We all have a little junk in our trunk, but by removing that extra weight, our vehicles will be more economical. The air conditioner is one of the biggest gas hogs in a vehicle besides the engine. During hot summer months, try to park in the shade and run the air conditioner only when necessary. On particularly hot days when AC is a must, turn it off 5 to 10 minutes before arriving at your destination. This will reduce gas consumption while keeping you comfortable. By following a few simple steps, you can see a significant savings in the amount of money you spend on your car. I encourage you to think about what you can do to save money and make your vehicle more efficient. ■
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The McSwain House by: Sunnie Dawn Smith
So many times, historic homes become like museums, preserving the past yet almost remaining frozen in time. It’s remarkable, though, when a house can maintain its historical integrity, while still being lived in—changing with the owners, creating new stories and new memories. The McSwain House, built in 1922, is one of these remarkable creations, forged with love, passion, and individuality. The land was originally part of the homestead allotment of John Leader, a full-blood Chickasaw. His heirs sold the allotment and after various conveyances, a one-story bungalow with attic bedrooms was erected on the present site in 1922. In May 1926, the property was sold to Foster McSwain, the owner of The McSwain Theater, and his wife, Thelma. In the early 1940s, the McSwains transformed the home in which they would live for the remainder of their lives into the two-story Colonial that it is today, and it has remained largely the same over the years. The current owners, Dania DeschampsBraly and George Braly, local attorneys, have lived in the home for thirty-one years. They added a deck and enlarged the existing sun porch. Other minor changes have been made by the Bralys. Dilapidated, rotting dining room windows were transformed into French doors, opening onto a new tropical courtyard protected from the north winds. A cast iron bathtub removed during a bathroom update was transformed into a Koi pond—one of two at the residence. The butler’s pantry became an elegant wet bar. In addition to these changes, the Braly’s have also taken the time to restore some other features to the home. For instance, a previous owner, during the heyday of shag carpeting, had carpeted several of the rooms in lime green shag. When the foundation of the home, never intended to support a second story, had to be rebuilt, the living room
floor boards were taken out, one by one, replaced, repaired, sanded, stained and finished in a high gloss, restoring part of the original glory of the McSwain House. One of the most important things they have restored to the home, however, is life, love, and passion. When Dania Deschamps-Braly was new in town, and fresh out of law school, a friend took her on a drive down King’s Road. When she saw the McSwain house she was immediately taken. On her friend’s suggestion, they stopped and knocked on the door, asking, on a whim and a long shot, if it was for sale. It turns out that the owner at the time, a local builder, did not care for historic homes, and had moved into this one out of necessity rather than choice. He replied with an enthusiastic yes and the home gained new owners. Living in the home, and restoring it, has been part creation and part exploration. Not only did they discover the beautiful hardwood floors, but also, through the process of renovation, they discovered that Thelma McSwain’s favorite color was pink— evidenced by never-removed dark pink wool carpeting behind closet doors and small areas of pink walls that had been overlooked in previous painting. Thelma also had guests sign the wallpaper in her breakfast nook, creating a list of who’s who of Ada’s past. Unfortunately, the wallpaper could not be preserved, though Dania tried tirelessly to do so. Though the home still maintains an aura
of the past, it has also been transformed by its current owners into something functional, lived-in—a sanctuary and paradise created through their own pasts, interests, and individuality. For instance, Dania loves to travel so the house is filled with memories from Africa. She loves costume jewelry, so the master bathroom’s walls are covered with necklaces, bracelets, and earrings; it is whimsical, yet functional. She is a self-proclaimed “Key West Conch” (the Key West, Florida version of our “Okie”) and has brought her upbringing to Ada in her décor, but also a courtyard filled with Banana trees and Palms. The McSwain House is a living, breathing home. Beautiful vistas surround the residence, whether they be Floridian or Classical courtyards. Flowers and vegetation spring from all around. But it is the life inside that makes it special. There are stories about Thelma McSwain playing the organ in her home; the music could be heard throughout the neighborhood. I could imagine sitting on a porch at dusk, listening to the sounds pouring from the windows, soaking in the peacefulness. Now there’s a different kind of peace—one of fish ponds, tropical paradises, and revelry in the glory of the past. Though it may be, and always will be, the “McSwain House,” perhaps a more fitting name would be the “McSwain-Braly Home.” ■ www.adahub.com • 17
horse rides only one cent by: Roy Deering
As dependable as an old friend, he stands at the north door of Ada’s Apple Market grocery store, waiting to brighten the day of whatever child happens along. For only a penny, he offers the thrill of a powerful steed, racing across the open prairie of the old west, the music of “The William Tell Overture”(Also known as the “Lone Ranger Song”) blaring for all to hear. For as long as Jim Dicus has owned the Apple Market, the little penny horse has been a favorite with kids of all ages -- but especially the youngest customers. For many older customers, the memories of riding the little horse are vivid and bring back memories of going shopping with Mom and/or Grandma. The truly amazing thing is that the horse still offers its rides for just a penny: ONE CENT. “I’ve been here for about 32 years, and I’ve got five grandkids and two greatgrandkids, and they’ve all rode that horse,” said Sue Shahan, longtime Apple Market employee. “The kids just adore that little horse, and you can always tell when somebody’s on it because you can hear the music playing all through the store. It’s such a wonderful little thing that means so much to so many of the kids who come in here,” she said. No one is sure exactly how long the horse has been a fixture around the Ada area. Shahan said the horse came to its present location after spending a number 18 • www.adahub.com
of years at another Dicus location in the Arlington Center. When that store closed, Dicus relocated the horse to its present spot guarding the Apple Market north door. That was more than 30 years ago, and the horse is still going strong. “The people who work here kind of forget about it from time to time, because it’s just like part of the store,” Shahan said. “But then you’ll hear the music, or you’ll walk by and there will be a little kid riding it and smiling that big smile. It’s just a really special part of the store.” When you talk about the Apple Market Horse, most people in the Ada area know you’re talking about the tancolored horse with the dark mane and tail that costs a penny to ride. It no longer looks new, with the saddle showing signs of wear and tear. Shahan said the horse has “gotten sick” a number of times through the years when he stopped working. From time to time, they’ve had the horse taken to a “veterinarian” to have him repaired, worrying some kids that he might not be coming back. But the most frightening episode the Apple Market crew has ever had to deal with was when “horse thieves” nearly made off with the store’s mascot for good a number of years ago. “We always thought we owned the horse and that we paid some company
out of Oklahoma City to come down and take care of it every month,” Shahan said. “Then one day that man who serviced it walked in with another woman and announced that lady was buying and they were taking the horse.” “I told them they couldn’t do that, that it was our horse, and they said that she had bought it and they were taking it, so I ran back to the back and hollered at Mr. Dicus,” Shahan said. “I was hollering, ‘Mr. Dicus! They’re taking the horse!,” ‘He dropped whatever he was doing and ran -- and I mean RAN -- to the front of the store and told them they were not taking the horse,” she said. “They left and we thought it was over. Then we came in the next morning, and the horse was gone! They had waited until Mr. Dicus and I left, and then they had come back and taken the horse.” Shahan said Dicus then contacted the Oklahoma City company who had “sold” the horse, had asked to get in contact with the buyer, and Dicus then bought the horse back and returned it to the store. “And that’s really the last time anything exciting happened with the horse,” Shahan said. “Other than that, he just sits there at the door day after day waiting for somebody’s child or grandchild to get on so he can make their day better.” ■
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