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FEBRUARY 2015

Pioneer Electric

COOPERATIVE

Apply yourself

College search tips for parents and students www.pioneerelectric.com

50th anniversary of historic march Events planned for Selma, Montgomery


EXECUTIVE VP/ GENERAL MANAGER

Terry Moseley CO-OP EDITOR

Casey Rogers ALABAMA LIVING is delivered to some 420,000 Alabama families and businesses, which are members of 22 not-for-profit, consumer-owned, locally directed and taxpaying electric cooperatives. AREA cooperative member subscriptions are $3 a year; non-member subscriptions, $6. Alabama Living (USPS 029-920) is published monthly by the Alabama Rural Electric Association of Cooperatives. Periodicals postage paid at Montgomery, Alabama, and at additional mailing office. POSTMASTER send forms 3579 to: Alabama Living, P.O. Box 244014 Montgomery, Alabama 36124-4014.

ALABAMA RURAL ELECTRIC ASSOCIATION

AREA PRESIDENT Fred Braswell EDITOR Lenore Vickrey MANAGING EDITOR Allison Griffin CREATIVE DIRECTOR Mark Stephenson ART DIRECTOR Michael Cornelison ADVERTISING DIRECTOR Jacob Johnson ADVERTISING COORDINATOR Brooke Davis

VOL. 68 NO. 2 FEBRUARY 2015

6 The Cooperative Heartbeat

Read about the vital role of Pioneer Electric employees and 2015 Service Awards.

12 Apply yourself

ON THE COVER PEC linemen (left to right): Perry Castleberry, Roger Thrower, Heath Peavy, Kevin Brogden and Ryan Salter restoring power during a recent storm.

Applying for college can be intimidating, but some tips from experts can make the process a little easier for parents and students.

32 Valentine’s date

PHOTO BY Casey B. Rogers

Satisfy your appetite for love at Auburn’s Ariccia Italian Trattoria, or one of our state’s many other romantic dining venues.

RECIPE EDITOR Mary Tyler Spivey ADVERTISING & EDITORIAL OFFICES:

340 TechnaCenter Drive Montgomery, Alabama 36117-6031 1-800-410-2737 E-mail: advertising@areapower.com www.areapower.coop

When you see this symbol, it means there’s more content online at www.alabamaliving.coop! Videos, expanded stories and more!

NATIONAL ADVERTISING REPRESENTATIVE:

National Country Market 611 South Congress Ave., Suite 504 Austin, Texas 78704 1-800-626-1181 www.nationalcountrymarket.com www.alabamaliving.coop USPS 029-920 • ISSN 1047-0311

DEPARTMENTS 9 32 34 40 41

Spotlight Worth the Drive Cook of the Month Outdoors Fish & Game Forecast

Printed in America from American materials

Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2015 3


Manager’s Comments

Contact Information: Business: 1-800-239-3092

Members First Terry Moseley

Executive Vice President and General Manager

(Monday-Friday 7 a.m. - 4 p.m.)

Toll Free Outage “Hotline” 1-800-533-0323 (24 hours a day)

Board of Trustees Tommy Thompson • President John Henry • Vice President Melvia Carter • Secretary Carey Thompson • Glenn Branum Tom Duncan • Dave Lyon Melvin Dale • Linda Arnold

Web site:

www.pioneerelectric.com

Payment Options: By Mail: Pioneer Electric Cooperative P.O. Box 370 Greenville, AL 36037 Bank Draft: Contact a customer service representative for details Credit Card: By phone or in person Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express Night Depository: Available at each office location Online: www.pioneerelectric.com

As 2015 is in full swing, Pioneer is gearing up for another exciting year with our Members First Program! Now in its third year, Members First was created in 2013 to reconnect Pioneer members with their cooperative. Participants attend informative quarterly meetings and are given the chance to become more knowledgeable about a wide variety of co-op related topics. The quarterly meetings consist of presentations made by various Pioneer employees regarding a variety of topics, such as: • History of Pioneer Electric • Energy Generation and Transmission • Cooperatives vs. Investor-Owned Utility • Residential Rate Policy • Electric Safety and Reliable Service • Conservation, Energy Audits and Rebates • Balance Sheet and Budget Margins • Capital Credits • New Programs Pioneer’s Members First program demonstrates one of the seven cooperative principles that Pioneer was founded upon. Principle 5: Education, Training and Information. Pioneer Electric and other electric cooperatives are to provide education and training for their members, elected

representatives, manager and employees so they can contribute effectively to the development of their cooperatives. They inform the general public—particularly young people and opinion leaders—about the nature and benefits of the cooperation. Pioneer employees such as Manager of Engineering and Operations Phillip Baker, Manager of Accounting Lauren Smith, Vice President Member Services Linda Horn, Vice President Economic Development and Legal Affairs Cleve Poole and other employees discuss areas of the cooperative relative to their particular positions. Each session also affords members the opportunity to ask questions and interact with employees. By directly interacting with our members, we become aware of your concerns and questions firsthand, which in turn positively impacts the steps we take in serving you. Program sessions are offered at both of our office locations each quarter to better accommodate members. Members that have expressed interest in the program, that were submitted by the previous Members First class or that signed up for the program at the Annual Member Meeting in October will attend the first program of this year’s series in early March. For more information about the program or to request to participate in future Members First activities, please contact us.

In Person: 7 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Greenville: 300 Herbert Street Selma: 4075 Ala. Highway 41 Authorized Payment Center: First Citizens Bank 40 Lafayette St. Hayneville

4 FEBRUARY 2015

Energy Tip of the Month Did you know that 90 percent of the energy used to operate a washing machine comes from using hot water? A simple switch from hot to cold can save a great deal of energy! Source: U.S. Department of Energy


Pioneer Electric Cooperative

Inside Pioneer: Commitment to Members Scholarship for PEC Students

The deadline to apply for Pioneer Electric’s 2015 Cooperative Foundation Scholarship is quickly approaching. The $1,000 scholarship is awarded to one high school senior residing in a residence served by Pioneer Electric every year. This scholarship program is part of the Electric Cooperative Foundation, Inc. and an independent panel of judges selects recipients. All applications must be received at the Electric Cooperative Foundation by February 27, 2015. Applications are available at both PEC office locations and at www.pioneerelectric.com. For more information, contact 334-382-4904.

Touchstone Donation

Pioneer Electric Cooperative’s Harriett Foster recently presented a check to Jeffrey Harris and Dorothy Maul of Hicks Hill/ Black Belt Volunteer Fire Department for the amount of $500. The contribution

Energy Cooperatives are a national alliance of local, consumer-owned electric utilities across the country committed to providing high standards of service to customers large and small. More than 725 Touchstone Energy Cooperatives in 44 states are delivering energ y and energ y solutions to approximately 22 million customers e v e r y d ay. To u c h s t o n e E n e r g y cooperatives serve their members with integrity, accountability, innovations and a longstanding commitment to communities. Touchstone Energy Cooperatives introduced the Touchstone Energy Hot Air Balloon in March 2000 as a goodwill ambassador for Touchstone Energy Cooperatives across the country. The values and brand identity of Touchstone Energy Cooperatives are promoted through the Balloon and its professional flight team wherever and whenever the Balloon is flying. The Touchstone Energy

is made to a local charity on behalf of the sponsoring Touchstone Energy Cooperatives.

Water Heater Rebates

Pioneer Electric launched a Water Heater Rebate program in October to encourage wise energy use among members. Recently, PEC’s Casey Rogers verified one of the first water heater rebate installations at Central Volunteer Fire Department in Greenville, Alabama.

Pictured : Casey Rogers and Jerry Mullins of Central Volunteer Fire Department

Pictured (left to right): Jeffrey Harris, Dorothy Maul and Harriett Foster

was made on behalf of Pioneer Electric Cooperative, by Touchstone Energy Cooperatives, for the attendance of the Touchstone Energy Hot Air Balloon at its 2014 Annual Meeting. Touchstone Alabama Living

Balloon is designed to provide a highly visible means of demonstrating good corporate citizenship at local civic and philanthropic events. Every time the Balloon is flown, a monetary contribution

Members who are building new homes are eligible for a rebate to cover the full price of a water heater purchased from the cooperative. Members who replace existing gas water heaters are also eligible for a rebate to cover the full price of a water heater purchased from the cooperative. Both 40 and 50 gallon sizes are available to members for the wholesale price of $250. To obtain a rebate (for gas replacement or new home), upon installation of water heater, members are to notify PEC, who will inspect and verify installation. Members who wish to replace an electric water heater can purchase a new water heater at the wholesale price from PEC, however no rebate will be issued. FEBRUARY 2015  5


The Cooperative Heartbeat

By Casey Rogers

I’ve recently started noticing how quickly stores begin to market and prepare for upcoming holidays before the current season completely comes to a close. You’ve probably noticed what I’m talking about—it seemed like before Thanksgiving was over, stores were flooded with Christmas and New Years merchandise. Aisles have also been taken over by a sea of red and pink since the beginning of the year in preparation for Valentines Day. Likewise, in the midst of the everyday hustle and bustle, it has become easy to move through holiday seasons in our own lives just as hurriedly. In thinking about how quickly holidays come and go, I’ve been pondering over our upcoming holiday—Valentine’s Day. It’s a holiday represented by symbols of hearts and figures of a winged character known as cupid. The entire month of February is often accompanied by copious amounts of chocolate, bouquets of flowers, balloon decorations, greeting cards and more. I’ve always thought of this holiday to be a special time to embrace friends and family that positively impact my life—those that make my heart ‘beat’, so to speak. It’s great to let loved ones and

friends know you care about them, but let’s go a little further. I wanted to take a little bit of time to discuss the heartbeat of your electric cooperative. As a member-owned electric cooperative, Pioneer Electric is committed to powering our community and empowering you to improve your quality of life. The heartbeat and livelihood of Pioneer Electric can be seen through the dedicated individuals that work together in serving you—the real power is in our people. Our employees have hearts for service and they are active members of the communities we serve. It’s a c ustomer s er v ice representative waiting with a friendly greeting at the information window when you’re having a bad day. It’s an employee dedicated to helping you figure out ways to increase the energy efficiency of your home. It’s a lineman who leaves his family during the middle of the night to restore your power. It’s an employee advocating to bring local jobs and economic opportunities to the area. Many of these heartbeats of Pioneer can be seen through your daily interactions with employees as a co-op member. However, there

are many more facets of our cooperative heartbeat that are often unseen. Pioneer Electric Cooperative encompasses a wide variety of employees. Employees can be found working both inside and outside of our physical offices, in management roles, working within our engineering and operations department and elsewhere. Some employees closely manage the budget and are continuously trying to cut cooperative costs. Some employees are focused on the overall safety of Pioneer employees and members. Some employees are dedicated to maintaining and keeping the appearance of Pioneer clean and presentable. Some employees prepare outside equipment and make sure everything is functioning properly. The various roles and tasks of PEC employees are endless and there are many pieces to the puzzle that make up Pioneer Electric, but together, we are able to function productively as your cooperative and bring you reliable electricity at the most affordable rate possible. During the month of February, let’s celebrate the heartbeat of our cooperative. Josh Middleton, 10 years

Lizzie King, 30 years

Vicki Russell, 5 years

6 FEBRUARY 2015

www.alabamaliving.coop


Pioneer Electric Cooperative

2015 Service Awards. Joe Edwards, 30 years Renee Fancher, 25 years

Linda Horn, 35 years

Louis Ulmer, 30 years

Johnny Anthony, 25 years

Jason King, 15 years

Cleve Poole, 20 years

Keith Crittenden, 5 years

Patti Presley, 15 years

Casey B. Rogers Communications Specialist Alabama Living


Economic Spotlight:

Rural Areas Need Jobs In November, the unemployment numbers for the state showed that only 6.0% of Alabamians were unemployed, the lowest rate in 8 years. This is good news for the state. However, the story in Alabama’s rural areas is not as good. In the counties served by Pioneer Electric Cooperative, Inc., only Crenshaw and Covington counties had rates below 6.8%, and Dallas, Lowndes, Monroe and Wilcox counties all had rates above 11%. In a typical year, many new jobs are created in Alabama. The majority of these jobs are created in the four major metro areas of Birmingham, Mobile, Huntsville and Montgomery, and close to the state’s two major universities in Auburn and Tuscaloosa. Site selectors choose these particular areas because of available skilled labor, proximity to major highways and transportation, as well as the existence of highly developed

infrastructure for communication, water, sewer, etc. Rural leaders have long asked the state to structure incentives that give rural areas a “leg up” on the more populous areas. Wayne Vardaman, lead economic developer in Dallas County, served last year as chair of the rural development task force within the Economic Development Association of Alabama. The committee proposed legislation that would give companies reasons to look at rural areas when scoping out Alabama. “Everyone agrees that Alabama needs to revamp its incentive package to be able to compete with neighboring states. It is the perfect time to try to put rural areas in a better position to compete for industries and jobs, as well,” says Vardaman. Some lawmakers agree. In a recent interview with a hometown newspaper, Cullman Representative Randall Shedd

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CO-OP CONNECTIONS

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8 FEBRUARY 2015

said, “I expect we will pass an economic development package and we want to make sure economic development in rural Alabama is a priority in whatever passes.” Shedd is a member of the Legislature’s Rural Caucus that focuses on ways to improve the rural areas of the state. “As Governor Bentley and his team presents legislation for economic development, I feel confident they will look for ways to bring jobs and business opportunity to rural Alabama and I think this caucus will want to be watching for that and helping with that.”

Cleve Poole

VP Economic Development and Legal Affairs

30,000 local retail offers where members can shop and local retail offers 30,000 save in their neighborhoods where members can shop and save in their neighborhoods

1.37 million page views on 1.37 million Connections.coop page views on Connections.coop Cardholders have saved more than $ 82 MILLION on Cardholders have saved more prescriptions since 2007 than $ 82 MILLION on prescriptions since 2007 Average savings on prescriptions reached the savings on highestAverage level ever at 45% off prescriptions reached the www.alabamaliving.coop highest level ever at 45% off


Spot Light

In  February

FEB. 12-15

Photo courtesy of Orange Beach Parks and Recreation

FEB. 28

Expo brings the outdoors inside Classic cars and crab claws With spring just around the corner, there’s no better time to find innovative products and fresh ideas for the home. Check out the Birmingham Home and Garden Show at the Birmingham Jefferson Convention Complex to get advice from professionals and deals in remodeling, renovation, home improvement, landscaping, gardening, home decor and more. Celebrities set to appear include the Fabulous Beekman Boys from the Cooking Channel and John and Whitney Spinks from HGTV’s “Flipping the Block.” Tickets for adults are $11, and children 6-12 $3; parking is an additional cost. Learn more at www.homeshowbirmingham.com.

Head down to the beach before the spring breakers arrive for the 23rd annual Orange Beach Seafood Festival and Car Show, from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at a new location at The Wharf, 4830 Main St. in Orange Beach. Enjoy a full day of food, arts and crafts vendors and music for the whole family. The festival is the major fundraiser for the Orange Beach Sports Association, which supports sports-related activities in the Baldwin County community. Besides the food and the cars (including antique, classic and hot rods), there will also be a silent auction, a kids’ zone with a climbing wall and games and a children’s performance pavilion. Call 251-981-1524.

FEB. 10

Celebrating the American worker

Switchboard operators in this 1943 photo will be a part of the upcoming traveling exhibit, “The Way We Worked.” Photo courtesy of National Archives, Records of the Women’s Bureau

A traveling exhibit called “The Way We Worked,” drawing from the collections of the National Archives, explores the diversity of the American workforce and how work became such a central element of American culture. Its stop at the Burrow Museum, on the campus of Wallace State Community College in Hanceville, will offer multiple interpretive opportunities for visitors through large graphics, along with relevant objects and work clothing.

“The Way We Worked” is the current exhibit of Museum on Main Street, which is a partnership project of the Smithsonian Institution, state humanities councils and rural museums across America. The Museum on Main Street project gives rural museums a chance to demonstrate their meaningful contributions to small town life. The exhibit continues through March. For more information, log on to www.museumonmainstreet.org.

FEB. 17

Laissez les bon temps rouler! Downtown Mobile comes alive for Mardi Gras Day, but parades begin in January and continue until Fat Tuesday all around Mobile and Baldwin counties. Young and old alike clamor for the goodies thrown from elaborate themed floats, which are manned by masked mystic societies; mounted police and marching bands enhance the party atmosphere along the parade routes. Nearly a million revelers each year come to celebrate in the birthplace of America’s original Mardi Gras. Bring a bag to tote all the Moon Pies and beads you catch! For specific parade information, visit www.mobile.org or call 800-5MOBILE.

Want to see more events or submit your own? Alabama Living

Visit www.alabamaliving.coop to submit an event and view our calendar or email an event to events@alabamaliving.coop.

FEBRUARY 2015  9


Power Pack

A day dedicated to the new you Proudly displaying your new last name on a marriage certificate is only the first step in legally changing your name. Now that the wedding and honeymoon are over, you need to tell Social Security so you can get a corrected Social Security card. If you have changed your name, whether due to marriage, divorce, or for another reason, the way to change your name with Social Security is to apply for a corrected Social Security card. This ensures that your legal name matches our records, thus avoiding possible problems in the future, such as a delay in obtaining any federal tax refund owed or not getting full Social Security credit for all your earnings. There are a number of other reasons you may want to get a Social Security card: starting a new job, verifying eligibility for government services, opening a bank account, obtaining medical coverage, filing taxes, and legally changing your name. In most cases, unless an employer or other

Letters to the editor Dear editor, The January issue of Alabama Living was a joy to read. From the cover of the family fun to the snowmen on the back page, I found myself “connected” to Alabama memories, places I have visited, the trivia, the “best” places, especially Clanton’s peaches (even mailed to Maine), Dale’s barbecue sauce, Vulcan in Birmingham. Even the tree re-cycling info was just what I like to see. Your staff offers an informative, creative, diverse publication that is most enjoyable to read. Thank you for giving me a touch of Alabama life in Maine. Bravo to you all. Maria Doelp Southport, Maine Dear editor, Somehow I missed the survey but I laughed so hard when I read the best 10  FEBRUARY 2015

entity specifically requests to see your card, all they really need is your number. But be cautious when sharing your Social Security number. People who commit fraud or want to steal your identity will often ask for your Social Security number. Always verify the identity of anyone who is asking, whether you’re online, on the phone, or face-to-face. If you just had a baby, he or she will need a Social Security number. The main reason is to show your child’s dependent status on your tax return. In most cases, you apply for your newborn’s Social Security card and number, as well as the baby’s birth certificate, in the hospital. If you need a new, replacement, or corrected Social Security card, you can find all the details at www.socialsecurity. gov/ssnumber, including the “Learn What Documents You Need” page, which lists the specific documents we accept as proof of age, identity, and citizenship. Each situation is unique, but in most

cases, you simply need to print, complete, and either mail or bring the application to Social Security with the appropriate documentation (originals or certified copies only). After you receive your Social Security card, don’t carry it with you. To reduce your risk of identity theft, keep your card in a safe place with your other important papers. Learn more about your Social Security card and number at www.socialsecurity. gov/ssnumber. A

advice for a newbie: Pick a team (January 2015). When we moved here, I was not into college football. About the first thing I was asked was, “Are you for Alabama or Auburn?” I had never heard of Auburn, so I said Alabama. Twenty-six years later, it’s Roll Tide!

mitted by Monica Grayson, via email) • Actress Courteney Cox (“Friends,” “Cougar Town,” the “Scream” movies) is from Birmingham (submitted by Mary Lee, via email) • Actor/singer Jim Nabors (“Gomer Pyle”) was from Sylacauga (submitted by Jimmy Horton, via email) • Actor George “Goober” Lindsey (“The Andy Griffith Show,” “Mayberry R.F.D.”) was from Jasper (submitted by Roberta Jordan, via email) • Heavyweight champion Evander Holyfield was born in Atmore. • Alabama football player turned actor Johnny Mack Brown was born in Dothan. (Both submitted by Bob Middleton, via email) • Dr. Luther Terry, former U.S. surgeon general best known for his warnings against the dangers and impact of tobacco use on public health, was born in Red Level in Covington County (submitted by Susan Rodgers, Red Level)

I thoroughly enjoy reading Alabama Living, especially Gary Smith’s column. Thank you, Sue Paletti Elberta

More famous Alabamians We’ve gotten several responses to our article on “Alabama Trivia: One Interesting Fact After Another” (January 2015). Many of our readers wanted to be sure we knew about the famous personalities who hail from Alabama. A sampling: • Olympic gold medalist Jesse Owens was from Oakville (submitted by John W. Malone, via snail mail) • “When a Man Loves a Woman” singer Percy Sledge is from Leighton (sub-

Kylle’ McKinney, Alabama Social Security Public Affairs Specialist, can be reached in Montgomery at 866-593-0914, ext. 26265, or at kylle. mckinney@ssa.gov.

Thanks to all who’ve written us! If you’ve got an interesting Alabama fact to share, email us at agriffin@areapower.com.

www.alabamaliving.coop


Daddy’s specialty: Camp stew My recent commentary on the return of fatty flavoring to the table (“Lard: It’s in again,” December 2014) drew a heartwarming response from a host of lard lovers. For these folks, food invoked pleasant memories not only of the dishes and delicacies, but also of the people who prepared them, the people who ate them, and the places where all this took place. Their stories and comments had the same effect on me. I recalled my Mother’s yeast rolls, which other families requested for their reunions, and which she happily supplied. I recalled my Grandma Jessie, after whom I would have named a child if “Jessie Jackson” were not already taken. Grandma Jessie was a cook of great renown, except when it came to her biscuits, which were thin and hard as hockey pucks. Then there was Aunt Hazel, an illtempered presence at family gatherings who Daddy said “was born in the objective case.” Aunt Hazel collected cookbooks, yet never cooked. Her brothers took delight in claiming that she collected to cover her lack of culinary competence. This so angered her that finally, after taking all she could take, Aunt Hazel announced that she and she alone would fix a Christmas feast that we would long remember, and she did. Complete with roast suckling pig with an apple in its mouth. I thought of that when I discovered, among my father’s papers, a recipe for camp stew. Now camp stew was a big deal in my family, a winter staple that could be both a side dish and the main course. It was sorta like what Georgians call Brunswick stew, but not quite. This discovery coincided with the arrival of Garden and Gun’s “Southern Food Issue.” G&G, as we insiders call it, is the magazine that aspires to replace Southern Living in the book baskets and on the coffee tables or in the bathrooms of upscale Southerners who want guests to know that they have “arrived,” but Alabama Living

made the journey without losing the common touch. Despite down-to-earth contributions by Roy Blount, Jr. and Rick Bragg, it was an issue for Southern “foodies.” I did not come from a family of “foodies.” We were a family of “eaters.” I am not sure when cooks became chefs, but I don’t think we got the memo. All this foodie-fuss about using “fresh” ingredients would have baffled my folks. We used fresh ingredients because that was what was available – we had a garden, chickens were out back, beef came from our steers, pork came from friends who raised hogs. There was also wild game – venison mostly, but sometimes turkey and squirrel.

What we couldn’t use when it was “fresh” we put in the “deep freeze.” At the height of Daddy’s fresh food production he had two freezers full. I don’t recall anyone complaining that frozen wasn’t fresh unless there was “freezer burn,” but that could be washed off or boiled away or covered with Campbell’s cream of mushroom soup. Despite all of nature’s bounty, my Mama considered Campbell’s cream of mushroom soup an essential part of our diet. It was one of the many modern conveniences she embraced. She stopped making homemade pie crust as soon as frozen ones were available. Canned (“whop”) biscuits suited her just fine. Mama held down a full-time job, so the crockpot became her friend – and ours.

She did not become a legendary cook until after she retired, and even then she was not reluctant to use a can opener. So she didn’t make camp stew. Daddy did that. When Daddy built his Poutin’ House he put in a stove so he could cook out there. It was out there that he made camp stew. The recipe I found was actually a list of ingredients. I added the directions from my memory of watching the master at work. First the meat: 4 hens, 8 lbs of beef. Boil the hens and take the meat off the bone. Chop the beef small and boil it as well. In another pot, a BIG pot, boil the hogs’ heads. Four of them. That might be a deal buster for lesser folks, but since camp stew making and hog killing usually coincided, Daddy knew where to get ‘em. Once cooked, what you cut and scrape off the hogs’ heads goes in with the rest of the meat – being careful to keep out stray hairs. Then add, according to the recipe, “6 cans corn (2 gal.), 15 lbs of Irish potatoes (chopped), 12 lbs of onions (also chopped), 2 bottles of Worcestershire sauce, 6 lemons (sliced), ½ cup of vinegar, 2½ gal tomato juice (6 tall cans), 2 bottles of ketchup, salt, pepper and hot sauce to taste.” It made a lot, but we had those freezers, so it lasted through winter. How about that, foodies? Know where you can get a nice fresh hog’s head? Av Harvey H. (“Hardy”) Jackson is retired professor emeritus of history at Jacksonville State University whose most recent book is The Rise and Decline of the Redneck Riviera, featured in the January 2013 Alabama Living. His work appears in the Anniston Star and Northeast Alabama Living. He can be reached at hjackson@ cableone.net.

FEBRUARY 2015  11


ACING THE

Advice from experts on choosing and applying to college

T

By Allison Griffin

he senior year of high school is packed with excitement and anticipation. But for some students and parents, the prospect of applying for college, evaluating schools and worrying about financial aid overshadows the fun. A little planning and wise advice can help take the stress out of the process. Read on to get some tips from experts.

1

Start preparing for college early. As in, freshman year. “What I try to tell students is that, in their freshman year, they’re starting their high school career with the same GPA that seniors want to have when they finish -- a 4.0,” says Dr. Taqua Lewis, junior and senior guidance counselor at Pinson Valley High School. The only way to keep it at a 4.0 is to study and work hard, and it’s far easier to start ahead than it is to dig out of a hole.

12  FEBRUARY 2015

2

Fill out a Free Application for Financial Student Aid (FAFSA) form, regardless of the family’s financial status. That’s because you don’t know what financial aid options might be available to you. “Schools have in-house or stimulus money, or state funds that the students may qualify for,” says Willieta Conner, education specialist with the Alabama State Department of Education. And every year you should reapply, she says. “You may not be eligible your freshman year, but when you get to your sophomore year, something may change.”

3

Get your applications in as soon as possible. In many areas, it’s not just a matter of getting accepted at the college, says Dr. Greg Fitch, executive director of the Ala-

bama Commission on Higher Education. “It may be a matter of getting on track with the type of degree that you’re looking for,” he says. For example, at the two-year schools, a majority of nurses graduate with an associate’s degree, and the nursing classes start right away, with few survey courses. “You need to be prepared for that,” Fitch says.

4

Don’t be intimidated by the application process. Lewis calls today’s high school students the “microwave generation,” because they want everything instantly. They like quick results, and might be discouraged from applying to college by forms and paperwork. Fortunately, today’s colleges allow online applications, which don’t seem quite as intimidating. While school guidance counselors and teachers can be encouragers, parents need

College T-shirt Day: Students at Pinson Valley High School are encouraged to wear shirts and hoodies from the colleges and universities they plan to attend. The day was a part of the school’s College Application Campaign Week. PHOTO COURTESY PINSON VALLEY HIGH SCHOOL www.alabamaliving.coop


Seniors encouraged by College Application Campaign

Hanceville: Christine Wiggins, Wallace State Community College’s career, success and graduation coach coordinator, helps Hanceville High seniors during the Alabama College Application Campaign Week in November.

6

PHOTO COURTESY OF WALLACE STATE’S COMMUNICATIONS AND MARKETING DEPARTMENT

to push the students to apply to schools and ensure that all the forms are filled out correctly and in a timely fashion. “A lot of parents may not have gone to college,” Conner says, “but they can explain to their children why this is a good thing.”

5

Don’t take a shotgun approach to applying to schools. Applying to many schools isn’t worth the effort or the expense, and isn’t realistic. There’s no point applying to a school that doesn’t offer your intended major, Lewis says, or that requires a tuition that is too far out of your family’s price range. She tells students to do their research online, armed with their current GPA. “Realistically look at your grades, their admissions requirements, (figure out) if you meet their minimum requirements, and if you do, does that school offer what you’re interested in?” Lewis says. She advises students to have three school choices: The No. 1 choice, “where I want to go, beyond a shadow of a doubt,” and an option two if No. 1 doesn’t work out. Finally, an option three -- “if neither of those works out, I can live with No. 3.” And keep a realistic view of your previous high school coursework. Lewis says she’s had students who tell her they want to be doctors, but who clearly haven’t been on that track in high school and haven’t taken the upper level math and science classes. In those cases, she’ll suggest looking at other options in the medical field -- not to deflate a student’s dream, but to steer the student toward a more realistic career goal. Alabama Living

Don’t stress over the choice of majors. While the undeclared major can be interpreted as a lack of direction in some students, remember that it is not required for a student to declare a major when he or she arrives on campus. “I think there is a misconception, and it’s often on the part of the parents, that the student has to know what they want to major in,” says Buddy Starling, dean of enrollment at Troy University. “Parents seem to stress over that more than the students. Sometimes parental stress is student stress.”

7

Remember that college accolades aren’t everything. Most colleges and universities can point to at least one national ranking on which they’ve scored well, compared to other schools. Such accolades are relevant, but keep in mind that the most important quality in choosing the right college is fit. “I think there’s a certain feeling when you get when you’re on a college campus,” Starling says. “Sometimes you just know it’s right, and sometimes you know it’s not so right. So perhaps the intangibles are more significant than the tangibles.” Lewis advises parents to not hold too strongly to the dreams of a child attending their alma mater, especially if the student is leaning toward another school. “I let them know, mom and dad … this is about them, not about you. At the end of the day, they have to be happy with the decision they’ve made.” A

Not every student is cut out for college, but a number of potential students may be overlooked because of a lack of encouragement to apply. Giving those students a good shot at a collegiate career is the goal of a state-funded program called the College Application Campaign. In the first year, the campaign piloted with 10 Alabama high schools; this year, the Alabama State Department of Education took the campaign statewide, and has 216 schools participating, says Willietta Conner, education specialist with ALSDE and the campaign’s state coordinator. The school guidance counselor serves as the site coordinator, with other people on the team – teachers, administrators and graduation coaches. They work as a team to get the seniors to apply to college early in the year. The focus is on first-generation college students, who would not normally apply early, as well as some who may not have decided what they want to do in the fall of their senior year. But the program isn’t limited to the 12th grade; some middle schools are even embracing the concept, Conner says. “That sends a strong message, because the sooner the students start getting their information, the better prepared they are by their senior year,” she says. The campaign team uses promotional items, such as student buttons that say “I applied to college,” and teachers decorate their doors and classrooms with banners to promote a college-going culture. Some schools host college fairs; some colleges send counselors to the high schools to help seniors with applications and FAFSA forms. Some host “college colors” day, and encourage students to wear gear from the colleges to which they’ve applied. So far, the results are encouraging, Conner says. The seniors take pride in completing their applications and the memorabilia they receive; that inspires the juniors to want to participate too. For more information, contact Willietta Conner at wconner@alsde.edu. -- Allison Griffin FEBRUARY 2015  13


Prospective students and parents approach Shelby Hall while on a University of South Alabama campus tour. PHOTO BY MARK STEPHENSON

ALABAMA COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES Some of the information below is from the Alabama Statewide Student Database, as reported by the Alabama Commission on Higher Education; other information is from the U.S. News and World Report College Compass and the schools’ websites.

Public four-year institutions: Alabama A&M University 4700 Meridian St. Normal, AL 35762 256-372-5230 www.aamu.edu Enrollment: 5,020 (2013) In-state tuition: $9,096 Receiving financial aid: 92% Alabama State University 915 S. Jackson St. Montgomery, AL 36104 334-229-4100 www.alasu.edu Enrollment: 6,075 (2013) In-state tuition: $8,720 Receiving financial aid: 91% Athens State University 300 N. Beaty St. Athens, AL 35611 800-522-0272 www.athens.edu Enrollment: 3,175 (2013) In-state tuition: $6,120 Receiving financial aid: 57%

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Auburn University 107 Samford Hall Auburn University, AL 36849 334-844-4650 www.auburn.edu Enrollment: 24,864 (2013) In-state tuition: $10,200 Receiving financial aid: 58% Auburn University Montgomery 7500 East Drive Montgomery, AL 36117 334-244-3602 www.aum.edu Enrollment: 5,096 (2013) In-state tuition: $9,080 Receiving financial aid: 65% Jacksonville State University 700 Pelham Road North Jacksonville, AL 36265 256-782-5781 www.jsu.edu Enrollment: 8,693 (2013) In-state tuition: $8,790 Receiving financial aid: 76%

Troy University University Avenue Troy, AL 36082-0001 334-670-3000 www.troy.edu Enrollment: 14,146 (2013) In-state tuition: $9,430 Receiving financial aid: 86% Regional campuses: Dothan, Montgomery University of Alabama Box 870100 Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0100 205-348-5100 www.ua.edu Enrollment: 34,852 (2013) In-state tuition: $9,826 Receiving financial aid: 63% University of Alabama at Birmingham 701 20th Street South, AB 420 Birmingham, AL 35294-1014 205-934-2384 www.uab.edu Enrollment: 18,591 (2013) In-state tuition: $9,280 Receiving financial aid: 60%

University of Alabama in Huntsville 301 Sparkman Drive Huntsville, AL 35899 256-824-1000 www.uah.edu Enrollment: 7,376 (2013) In-state tuition: $9,158 Receiving financial aid: 57% University of Montevallo Station 6000, University of Montevallo Montevallo, AL 35115 205-665-6000 Enrollment: 3,066 (2013) In-state tuition: $10,660 Receiving financial aid: 76% University of North Alabama UNA Box 5004 Florence, AL 35632-0001 256-765-4100 www.una.edu Enrollment: 6,992 (2013) In-state tuition: $9,073 Receiving financial aid: 64%

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University of South Alabama 307 University Blvd. North, Room 130 Mobile, AL 36688 251-460-6111 www.usouthal.edu Enrollment: 15,065 (2013) In-state tuition: $8,610 Receiving financial aid: 68%

Calhoun Community College U.S. 31 North Decatur, AL 35601 256-306-2500 www.calhoun.edu Enrollment: 11,186 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,260 Receiving financial aid: 49% Regional campus: Huntsville

University of West Alabama Livingston, AL 35470 205-652-3400 www.uwa.edu Enrollment: 4,427 (2013) In-state tuition: $8,018 Receiving financial aid: 85%

Central Alabama Community College 1675 Cherokee Road Alexander City, AL 35010 256-234-6346 www.cacc.edu Enrollment: 1,841 (2013) In-state tuition: $3,825 Receiving financial aid: 73% Regional campus: Childersburg

Public two-year institutions: Alabama Southern Community College 2800 S. Alabama Ave. Monroeville, AL 36461 251-575-3156 www.ascc.edu Enrollment: 1,349 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,260 Receiving financial aid: 81% Regional campuses: Jackson, Thomasville, Gilbertown Bevill State Community College 1411 Indiana Ave. Jasper, AL 35501 800-648-3271 www.bscc.edu Enrollment: 3,491 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,300 Receiving financial aid: 74% Regional campuses: Brewer, Walker College, Hamilton Bishop State Community College 351 N. Broad St. Mobile, AL 36603-5898 251-405-7000 www.bishop.edu Enrollment: 3,897 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,260 Receiving financial aid: 84% Regional campuses: BakerGaines Central, Carver, Southwest

Chattahoochee Valley Community College 2602 College Drive Phenix City, AL 36869 334-291-4900 www.cv.edu Enrollment: 1,837 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,320 Receiving financial aid: 83% Drake State Community and Technical College 3421 Meridian St. North Huntsville, AL 35811 256-539-8161 www.drakestate.edu Enrollment: 1,383 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,230 Receiving financial aid: 88% Enterprise State Community College 600 Plaza Drive Enterprise, AL 36330 334-347-2623 www.escc.edu Enrollment: 2,333 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,260 Receiving financial aid: 81% Regional campuses: Mobile Aviation Center, Aviation Campus (Ozark)

Faulkner State Community College 1900 U.S. 31 South Bay Minette, AL 36507 800-231-3752 www.faulknerstate.edu Enrollment: 4,363 (2013) In-state tuition: $6,390 Receiving financial aid: 73% Regional campuses: Gulf Shores, Fairhope Gadsden State Community College 1001 George Wallace Drive Gadsden, AL 35903 256-549-8222 www.gadesdenstate.edu Enrollment: 5,797 (2013) In-state tuition: $5,940 Receiving financial aid: 66% Regional campuses: East Broad Street, Ayers, Valley Street, Wallace Drive Ingram State Technical College 5375 Ingram Road Deatsville, AL 36022 334-285-5177 www.ingram.cc.al.us Enrollment: 514 (2013) In-state tuition: $3,960 Receiving financial aid: 99% Jefferson Davis Community College 220 Alco Drive Brewton, AL 36427 251-867-4832 www.jdcc.edu Enrollment: 1,092 (2013) In-state tuition: $3,968 Receiving financial aid: 86% Regional campus: Atmore Jefferson State Community College 2601 Carson Road Birmingham, AL 35215 800-239-5900 www.jeffstateonline.com Enrollment: 8,551 (2013) In-state tuition: $5,250 Receiving financial aid: 52% Regional campus: Shelby

FEBRUARY 2015  15


Southern Union State Community College 750 Roberts St. Wadley, AL 36276 256-395-2211 www.suscc.edu Enrollment: 4,805 (2013) In-state tuition: $3,960 Receiving financial aid: 68% Regional campuses: Opelika, Valley Trenholm State Technical College 1225 Air Base Boulevard Montgomery, AL 36108 334-420-4200 www.trenholmstate.edu Enrollment: 1,351 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,170 Receiving financial aid: 74% Regional campus: Patterson

Lawson State Community College 3060 Wilson Road, Southwest Birmingham, AL 35221 205-925-2515 www.lawsonstate.edu Enrollment: 3,031 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,290 Receiving financial aid: 85% Regional campus: Bessemer Lurleen B. Wallace Community College 1000 Dannelly Blvd. Andalusia, AL 36420 334-222-6591 www.lbwcc.edu Enrollment: 1,570 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,230 Receiving financial aid: 73% Regional campuses: MacArthur, Greenville

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Marion Military Institute 1101 Washington St. Marion, AL 36756 800-664-1842 www.marionmilitary.edu Enrollment: 418 In-state tuition: $8,550 Receiving financial aid: 93% Northeast Alabama Community College 138 Alabama Highway 35 West Rainsville, AL 35986 256-638-4418 www.nacc.edu Enrollment: 2,835 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,260 Receiving financial aid: 79% Northwest-Shoals Community College 800 George Wallace Blvd. Muscle Shoals, AL 35661 800-645-8967 www.nwscc.edu Enrollment: 3,865 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,231 Receiving financial aid: 66% Regional campus: Phil Campbell

Reid State Technical College P.O. Box 588 Evergreen, AL 36401 251-578-1313 www.rstc.edu Enrollment: 518 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,290 Receiving financial aid: 88% Shelton State Community College 9500 Old Greensboro Road Tuscaloosa, AL 35405 205-391-2211 www.sheltonstate.edu Enrollment: 5,068 (2013) In-state tuition: $3,960 Receiving financial aid: 55% Regional campus: C.A. Fredd Snead State Community College 220 N. Walnut St. Boaz, AL 35957 256-593-5120 www.snead.edu Enrollment: 2,295 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,320 Receiving financial aid: 77%

Wallace Community College (Dothan) 1141 Wallace Drive Dothan, AL 36303 334-983-3521 www.wallace.edu Enrollment: 4,697 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,200 Receiving financial aid: 72% Regional campus: Sparks Wallace State Community College (Hanceville) 801 Main St., Northwest Hanceville, AL 35077-2000 256-352-8000 www.wallacestate.edu Enrollment: 5,281 (2013) In-state tuition: $4,260 Receiving financial aid: 69% Wallace State Community College (Selma) 3000 Earl Goodwin Parkway Selma, AL 36702-2530 334-876-9227 http://wccs.edu Enrollment: 1,745 (2013) In-state tuition: $3,960 Receiving financial aid: 86% Regional campus: WCCS Clanton Extension Center

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Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2015  17


Non-profit independent institutions: Amridge University 1200 Taylor Road Montgomery, AL 36117 800-351-4040 www.amridgeuniversity.edu Enrollment: less than 1,000 Undergraduate tuition and fee: $3,450 Student/faculty ratio: 7:1 Religious affiliation: Churches of Christ Receiving financial aid: not available Birmingham-Southern College 900 Arkadelphia Road Birmingham, AL 35254 205-226-4620 www.bsc.edu Enrollment: 1,305 (current) Undergraduate tuition and fees: $31,888 Student/faculty ratio: 13:1 Religious affiliation: United Methodist Church Receiving financial aid: >95 percent Concordia College 1712 Broad St. Selma, AL 36701 334-874-5700 www.ccal.edu Enrollment: 719 (2012) Undergraduate tuition: $4,960 Student/faculty ratio: NA Religious affiliation: Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod Receiving financial aid: not available Faulkner University 5345 Atlanta Highway Montgomery, AL 36109 334-272-5820 www.faulkner.edu Enrollment: 3,227 (current) Tuition, room and board: $24,030 Student/faculty ratio: 15:1 Religious affiliation: Churches of Christ Receiving financial aid: 96%

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Huntingdon College 1500 E. Fairview Ave. Montgomery, AL 36106 334-833-4222 www.huntingdon.edu Enrollment: 1,104 (current) Tuition, room, board, fees: $33,100 Student/faculty ratio: 13:1 Religious affiliation: United Methodist Church Receiving financial aid: > 90 percent Judson College 302 Bibb St. Marion, AL 36756 334-683-6161 www.judson.edu Enrollment: 305 (2013) In-state tuition: $7,602 Student/faculty ratio: 9:1 Religious affiliation: Baptist Receiving financial aid: not available Miles College 5500 Myron Massey Blvd. Fairfield, AL 35064 205-929-1000 www.miles.edu Enrollment: 1,634 (current) In-state tuition: $5,112 Student/faculty ratio: 14:1 Religious affiliation: Christian Methodist Episcopal Receiving financial aid: not available Oakwood University 7000 Adventist Blvd. NW Huntsville, AL 35896 256-726-7000 www.oakwood.edu Enrollment: 2,006 (2011) In-state tuition: $7,857 Student/faculty ratio: NA Religious affiliation: Seventhday Adventist Receiving financial aid: not available Samford University 800 Lakeshore Drive Birmingham, AL 35229 205-870-2011 www.samford.edu Enrollment: 4,933 (current) In-state tuition: $26,524 Student/faculty ratio: 12:1 Religious affiliation: Baptist Receiving financial aid: > 90%

Scholarship Fair: Pinson Valley High School’s scholarship fair for students and parents was well attended. The fair was a part of the school’s College Application Campaign Week. PHOTO COURTESY PINSON VALLEY HIGH SCHOOL

Selma University 1501 Lapsley St. Selma, AL 36701 334-872-2533 www.selmauniversity.edu Enrollment: 400-600 In-state tuition: $3,240/ semester Student/faculty ratio: not available Religious affiliation: Alabama State Missionary Baptist Convention Receiving financial aid: not available Southeastern Bible College 2545 Valleydale Road Birmingham, AL 35244 205-970-9200 www.sebc.edu Enrollment: 161 (2013) In-state tuition: $12,480/year Student/faculty ratio: 12:1 Religious affiliation: Christian Receiving financial aid: not available Spring Hill College 4000 Dauphin Road Mobile, AL 36608 251-380-4000 www.shc.edu Enrollment: 1,449 (2013) In-state tuition: $30,924/year Student/faculty ratio: 13:1 Religious affiliation: Catholic Receiving financial aid: 99% Stillman College 3600 Stillman Blvd. Tuscaloosa, AL 35403 205-349-4240 www.stillman.edu Enrollment: 1,000 (current) In-state tuition: $15,938 Student/faculty ratio: 15:1 Religious affiliation: Presbyterian Church (USA) Receiving financial aid: not available

Talladega College 627 W. Battle St. Talladega, AL 35160 256-362-0206 www.talladega.edu Enrollment: < 1,000 In-state tuition and fees: $11,492/year Student/faculty ratio: 12:1 Religious affiliation: United Church of Christ Receiving financial aid: 98% Tuskegee University 1200 W. Montgomery Road Tuskegee, AL 36088 334-727-8500 www.tuskegee.edu Enrollment: 3,156 (current) In-state tuition: $9,280 Student/faculty ratio: 13:1 Religious affiliation: None Receiving financial aid: not available United States Sports Academy One Academy Drive Daphne, AL 36526-7055 251-626-3303 www.ussa.edu Enrollment: 461 (2013) Tuition: about $4,420/term Student/faculty ratio: not available Receiving financial aid: 74% University of Mobile 5735 College Parkway Mobile, AL 36613 251-675-5990 www.umobile.edu Enrollment: 1,600 (current) In-state tuition: $9,360/ semester Student/faculty ratio: 14:1 Religious affiliation: Baptist Receiving financial aid: 97%

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Recruiting the next generation of construction workers By Minnie Lamberth Students try their hands at brick masonry at the Southwest Alabama Workforce Development Council’s Worlds of Opportunity fair, a large career expo in held Mobile. PHOTOS COURTESY BIG COMMUNICATIONS

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acing a severe shortage in its workforce, Alabama’s construction industry came together in 2010 to push a simple message: “Go Build Alabama.” The mass media marketing campaign promoting the theme is a creation of the Alabama Construction Recruitment Institute, which has served as a model for other states on how to recruit the next generation of skilled construction trade workers. The first step took place when partners across the commercial and industrial construction industry – including labor unions, builders, contractors, schools, colleges and construction business owners – joined forces to address the problems they were observing. They approached legislators for help establishing the recruitment institute. “It was driven by industry,” says Jason Phelps, the ACRI’s executive director. He explained that industry leaders recognized that their workforce was aging and would soon head into retirement. The research was also showing “young people weren’t considering construction as a viable career,” Phelps says. “These are good, viable jobs (so) that once you get some training under your belt, you’re going to be in the upper half of the wage earners in the state,” he adds. At the time the ACRI launched the “Go Build” campaign in August 2010, one third of all skilled tradesmen in the construction industry were over the age of 50, and training programs weren’t producing enough young workers to replace those soon to retire. “If kids don’t see it as a future for themselves, they’re not going to sign up,” Phelps says. “We try to spark their interest.” Next, they help them find the right training programs. Links with information about community college programs, career technical education and apprenticeships are available at http://gobuildalabama.com. Mike Rowe, former host of the Discovery Channel’s “Dirty Jobs,” was one of the first faces associated with the phrase “Go Build Alabama” when he served as spokesman for a series of television commercials, many of which ran during or around sports programming. The results of the campaign have proven worthwhile. Based on a May 2013 survey of career technical students, Phelps says, “Thirty-one percent said ‘Go Build Alabama’ played a role in choosing a career in construction.” Those numbers correlate closely with data that shows a 33 percent increase in student participation in career technical programs. A FEBRUARY 2015  19


A student in the Consortium for Alabama Regional Center for Automotive Manufacturing, or CARCAM, program works with a robot. PHOTO COURTESY GADSDEN STATE COMMUNITY COLLEGE

Colleges partner with automotive industry By Minnie Lamberth

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s Alabama’s automotive industry moved into high gear over the last ten to 20 years, thanks to the location here of automotive plants for Mercedes, Honda, Hyundai and many other suppliers, the state’s community colleges and universities also created partnerships with the industries within their communities. With the support of National Science Foundation grants, 11 of the state’s community and technical colleges formed CARCAM, or the Consortium for Alabama Regional Center for Automotive Manufacturing. The purpose, says CARCAM director Beverly Hildebrand, is to educate skilled technicians for the high-tech-based fields of robotics, industrial automation and precision machinery. The colleges offer an Automotive Manufacturing Technology degree along with curriculum and programs validated by industry representatives. They prepare workers not just for automotive manufacturers but also for their tier 1 and tier 2 suppliers and other advanced manufacturing industries in their communities.

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Corey Edwards, a CARCAM student at Gadsden State Community College, says he’s glad to be part of the program. “I thought it was a really good fit as far as finding a good job and job openings,” Edwards said. The 25-year-old student is pursuing an associate of applied science in electronics engineering technology, and though he hasn’t decided where he wants to work, he knows opportunity is there. He said CARCAM and the American Manufacturing Association are good at helping good students find jobs when they graduate – and giving them support during their schooling. “CARCAM gives you everything you need for success in an industrial environment,” Edwards says. “I’m glad I made that choice.” Community colleges participating are: Bevill State, Calhoun, Central Alabama, Gadsden State, Jefferson State, Lawson State, Shelton State, Southern Union State and Wallace State, along with Drake State Technical College and Trenholm State Technical College. More info: www.carcam.org. A www.alabamaliving.coop


Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2015  21


A bridge between past and present

The historic Edmund Pettus Bridge over the Alabama River in Selma will again be in the national eye during the upcoming Selma-to-Montgomery march commemoration. PHOTO BY ART MERIPOL

Full slate of activities to mark 50th anniversary of “Bloody Sunday”

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By Miriam Davis

he year 2015 marks the anniversary of two momentous events in Alabama’s – and the nation’s – history. It marks the 50th anniversary of the Selma-to-Montgomery march and the 60th anniversary of the Montgomery bus boycott, two crucial events of the civil rights movement. While plans for remembering the Montgomery bus boycott are still in the early stages, plans for the Selma march are well under way. In fact, there were actually three Selma marches. On March 7, 1965, the first, inspired by the death of an African-American civil rights worker, ended in “Bloody Sunday,” when state troopers and sheriffs’ deputies beat and gassed marchers on the Edmund Pettus Bridge. Not until the third attempt was the 54-mile journey to Montgomery completed. Leaving Selma on March 21, civil rights activists arrived in Montgomery on March 24 and marched on the state Capitol the following day. Selma began its commemorations with the start of talent auditions in December. Thirty acts will be eventually selected to compete in the Selma Starz Talent Show on Feb. 27. The following night, the winners will open a concert for what organizers hope 22  FEBRUARY 2015

will be a big name main act. “This is a way to get young people involved and to showcase local talent,” said Ashly Mason, tourism director for Selma and Dallas County. The main activities, of course, will be in March. Since 1993, Selma has remembered the march every year with the Bridge Crossing Jubilee. This year will be no different. Beginning March 5, more than 40 events, many of them free, will be held over a four-day period. They include a unity breakfast, a hip-hop, gospel and blues festival, civil and human rights workshops, and a film festival featuring short films about human rights or social justice. A children’s sojourn will use songs, dances, and skits to tell the story of the civil rights movement to elementary schoolage children. Events will culminate in a re-creation of the crossing of the Edmund Pettus Bridge on Sunday, March 8. These events and others – including the release of the major motion picture “Selma,” which was filmed in Montgomery and Selma – will bring a welcome attention to the state. “An important historical event like this is a unique opportunity

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to commemorate the leaders and foot soldiers of an important missioned for the occasion. On March 7, Patti Labelle will appear milestone in the nation’s history,” said Lee Sentell, director of the in concert at Alabama State University. Alabama Tourism Department. “It’s also a great opportunity to St. Jude and the city of Montgomery are partnering to re-enact measure how far our country has come in that time.” the last leg of the march, the one made by some 25,000 people The commemorations continue throughout the month. From on the state Capitol on March 25. A ceremony on the steps of the March 21-25, participants can re-enact the entire march from Capitol will feature an address by Bernice King, youngest child of Selma to Montgomery. The National Park Service will sponsor a the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. That morning the city of Montgomery will sponsor a heroes’ break“Walking Classroom” for 150 selectfast for some of the original marchers. ed college students from around the Because the Montgomery public country who will walk the entire route. When marchers finally arrived in schools will be out for spring break Montgomery on March 24, 1965, the March 23-27, educational tours will only accessible shelter they found was take eighth through 12th-graders to the City of St. Jude, a Catholic social historical sites in Tuskegee, Selma and service organization. St. Jude is planMontgomery. ning its own commemoration of the The commemorations are imporevents of 50 years ago. On the night tant to the city of Montgomery, said before the march on the Capitol in Anita Archie, chief of staff for MontVisitors will converge on Dexter Avenue, which leads 1965, such entertainers as Harry Be- past the historic Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist gomery Mayor Todd Strange. “We lafonte, Joan Baez, Tony Bennett, Church to the state Capitol, for a re-enactment of the want to show the world that the city Sammy Davis Jr., and Peter, Paul, and Selma-to-Montgomery march. PHOTO BY ART MERIPOL of Montgomery has changed a great Mary performed a “Stars for Freedom deal,” Archie says. “But the city of Rally” on the grounds. On March 24, St. Jude will stage a re-enact- Montgomery also remembers. We remember, we honor, and ment of the concert, but instead of Hollywood stars, it will feature we want to continue working for change. There’s still work to be young local talent. done.” A Several events in Montgomery will mark the date of Bloody Sunday. On March 6, the Imani Winds quartet and baritone solo- Events are accurate as of press time, but are subject to change. For a ist Sidney Outlaw will perform the world premier of composer complete list of commemoration events and the latest information, Mohammed Fairouz’s “Deep Rivers,” a set of songs specially com- visit http://dreammarcheson.com and www.selmajubilee.com The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. speaks to a large crowd in Selma in March 1965 as they prepare to begin a march to Montgomery.

Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2015  23


Living history Capitol tour guide lived through pivotal time By Jennifer Kornegay

Aroine Irby addresses co-op students on the Montgomery Youth Tour.

Aroine Irby

“When we made it to the steps in the final march, that day was unlike any

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he Alabama state Capitol building’s magnificent white dome has looked down upon some of our country’s most important events. On its white marble steps, in 1861, Jefferson Davis was sworn in as the first and only president of the Confederate States of America; a bronze star marks the spot. More than 100 years later, at the edge of the same steps, another event unfolded, one that would change the world. On March 25, 1965, 25,000 marchers arrived in downtown Montgomery after traveling on foot from Selma for four days. They made their way to the Capitol steps in the final leg of the Selma-to-Montgomery march, a peaceful protest led by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and one of the defining moments of the civil rights movement. As a direct result of the March, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 was signed into law. Today, you can tour the Capitol to learn more about its rich and turbulent past, and there’s no better person to have as your guide than Aroine Irby. After retiring from the Air Force, the Gees Bend native became a docent for the Alabama Historical Commission and has been leading 12 tours a week for 10 years, walking folks through the Capitol’s storied halls, entertaining and educating them with his big personality and even bigger grin. He begins by telling visitors that the Capitol is a “working museum.” He explains the origins of our state flag. He points out the two grand circular staircases designed by a former slave, renowned bridge builder and one of Alabama’s first black legislators, Horace King. But he also adds a personal perspective, and it’s one worth hearing. Irby was an active participant in the civil rights movement and lived through some of its most pivotal and dramatic moments. Near the 24  FEBRUARY 2015

middle of the tour, he leads visitors out the massive front doors to the marble steps and speaks with pride as he shares his experiences. He was on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma when the first march to Montgomery was stopped by law enforcement in a violent spectacle now known as Bloody Sunday. He praises King for his insistence that the marchers remain passive in the face of brutality. “That was a tough pill for me and many of the protesters to swallow, but he was right. It was the key to the movement’s success.” And he smiles as he recounts the day all the suffering finally paid off. “When we made it to the steps in the final march, that day was unlike any other. It was an amazing achievement, and it turned the attention of the world to our plight. I’ll never forget Dr. King’s words, and what we all earned in that struggle, the right to cast our vote like every other American.” Irby went on to work for Gov. George Wallace for a short time, the man who only a few years earlier stood on the Capitol steps and vowed that nothing would change. Irby says that later, Wallace had a true change of heart. “It was an act of God, and to this day I maintain that he was one of the best governors our state ever had, even in the bad times,” he says. “His speeches and stubbornness pushed us to do what we did.” And Irby maintains that in his last years in office, Wallace did more for minorities in Alabama than any other governor. “And not just blacks, but women and Latinos too,” he says. This spring, find the time to take a Capitol tour with Irby; his enthusiasm for keeping the history of the Capitol alive is obvious and contagious. “If I was a rich man, I’d pay the commission to let me continue to do this,” he says. A

other. It was an amazing achievement, and it turned the attention of the world to our plight. I’ll never forget Dr. King’s words, and what we all earned in that struggle, the right to cast our vote like every other American.”

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Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2015  25


“Quiet Courage” Documentary tells story of groundbreaking Auburn athlete James Owens By Lenore Vickrey

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atching your life story play out on the big screen might be intimidating for most folks, but for James Owens, the first black scholarship football player at Auburn University, seeing a movie about his life was both exciting and humbling at the same time. “It brought back a lot of memories and it made me more humble,” says the former fullback whose story is chronicled in “Quiet Courage,” a documentary written and directed by actor and author Thom Gossom, Owens’ friend, teammate and roommate at Auburn. The film was produced jointly with Auburn, where it was shown last November to an appreciative audience of invited guests. It was later shown on Alabama Public Television, and Gossom is optimistic for even wider distribution in 2015. Gossom, who was the first black athlete in the Southeastern Conference to walk on, earn a full scholarship and graduate from Auburn, wrote his own memoir in 2008, Walk-On: My Reluctant Journey to Integration at Auburn University. He’d wanted to tell Owens’ story as well, and Auburn administrators, who were putting together a 50-year commemoration of integration at the university, put their support behind it and granted him access to historic photos and film footage. The process took about two years to complete. “It all just came together,” Gossom says. “I knew it was a love story from the start. I’ve known it for a while.” The movie includes interviews with Owens’ teammates and coaches, beginning with his recruitment out of Fairfield High School and enrollment in 1969, his success on the field as a member of the 1972 team known as “The Amazin’s,” his shortcomings in the classroom and finally

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his acceptance as member of the football program. While the film brought back sometimes painful memories, Owens, who is now a minister, said he believes he was sent to Auburn for a reason. “If you never quit and never give up, good things can happen in your life,” he says. Many people had no idea what he was going through at the time, he says, but have since been apologetic and understanding of his struggles. He’s especially grateful that young people in his family have seen the film and been touched by his story. “It’s been a blessing to see them understand that they are standing on somebody else’s shoulders, that lots of people went through things and suffered through things so they could have what they have now.” It saddens him to see racial conflict still an issue in some cities. “Whatever our differences, we all ought to be able to live together as Jesus’ people,” he says. “We all belong to him.” Though he’s been sidelined with health problems in recent years, Owens is happy his legacy will live on through the film. Gossom says the Auburn Athletic Department is considering using it to show to incoming players and transfer students. “It will reside in the history of Auburn long after I’ve gone,” he says. “Courage can be expressed in so many ways,” he adds. “Sometimes it can be expressed quietly.” A For a copy of the DVD, visit Gossom’s website, bestgurl.com. James Owens, left, and Thom Gossom celebrate the debut of the movie, “Quiet Courage,” about Owens’ years at Auburn. “He was Bo Jackson before there was a Bo Jackson,” Gossom says. PHOTOS BY TANISHA STEPHENS


Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2015  27


Alabama Literature

ALABAMA BOOKSHELF Selma to Montgomery marcher pens book for young people By Miriam Davis

Turning 15 on the Road to Freedom by Lynda Blackmon Lowery By the time she was 15 years old, Lynda Blackmon Lowery had been jailed, locked in a sweatbox, beaten, gassed, and helped make history. Lowery tells her story in Turning 15 on the Road to Freedom (Dial Books, $19.99, January 2015), a memoir written for young people, published to coincide with the 50th anniversary celebrations of the Selma-to-Montgomery march. Lowery was born in Selma in 1950. The oldest of four children, her mother died when she was 7 because, she believes, a white hospital refused to admit her. The young Lynda, her sisters and her brother were raised by their father and grandmother. Her grandmother taught her, “There is nothing more precious walking on this earth than you are. You are a child of God. So hold up your head and believe in yourself.” And her grandmother first took her

Lynda Blackmon Lowery wanted to document her experiences as a participant in the Selma-to-Montgomery march. 2014 COPYRIGHT ROBIN COOPER

28  FEBRUARY 2015

to hear the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. speak in 1963. He told them that they could win the right to vote with what he called “steady, loving confrontation.” “I remember leaning forward,” says Lowery, “and thinking, ‘I’m going to do that.’” She began participating in marches and getting routinely rounded up by police, who used cattle prods to take marchers to jail and pack them into overcrowded cells. They sang to keep up their spirits. Lowery admits that when they sang “We Shall Overcome,” and “sang the line ‘We are not afraid,’ I lied a little.” She insists that it wasn’t courage that kept her going. “It was more determination,” she says. “And when we marched and went to jail, I had everybody with me and everybody else was as scared as I was.” Although she was beaten unconscious on the Edmund Pettus Bridge on “Bloody Sunday,” Lowery persevered. She turned 15 on March 22, 1965, in the middle

of the march; she was the youngest of the 300 who took four days to walk the entire distance. Lowery says that the march to Montgomery changed her. Before, she says, “I didn’t like white folk, and they didn’t like me.” But after Bloody Sunday she was amazed when white people from all over the country come to join the marchers. For her, it was a transformative experience: “They came to our houses and slept on our floors, and ate what we ate, and called my father, ‘Mr. Blackmon.’” Lowery, who later moved to New York, earned a college degree, and worked for a state mental hospital before returning to Selma, says that she doesn’t regret what happened to her. “That was part of life’s journey,” she says. “I wouldn’t be who I am now without it.”


Around Alabama FEBRUARY

5-7

Robertsdale, 2015 Robertsdale UMC Quilt Show at the Robertsdale United Methodist Church, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. See more than 300 creatively displayed handmade quilts. Vendors will be on hand offering quilting supplies and scissors sharpening. $5 show admission and $7 for lunch. Contact the church office at 251-947-4602 or email office@robertsdaleumc. com.

5-14

Fort Payne, DeKalb County Children’s Advocacy Center’s 21st Annual Dinner Theatre Fundraiser featuring the play “Virgil Goes to Hollywood” written by Eddie McPherson. Ticket prices range from $20 to $30 each. Reserved seats only. For more information or to purchase tickets, call 256-997-9700.

6-8

Gadsden, 47th Annual Altrusa Antique Show and Sale at the Convention Hall. All exhibits for sale. Tickets are $5, bring this ad and save $1. All proceeds to be used for community projects.

20

-April 18, Wetumpka, When Dinosaurs Roamed: The Wetumpka Impact Crater. Presented by the Kelly Fitzpatrick Memorial Gallery in conjunction with the Wetumpka Crater Commission, this multifaceted exhibition includes artwork by professional paleoartists, as well as a juried competition for K-12 students, collegiate students and adults. Additional components will include free docent-lead tours of the exhibition each Thursday and Saturday from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Group tours available by appointment. Contact the Gallery for additional information: 334-567-5147.

20

Troy, The Texas Guitar Quartet performing at the Claudia Crosby Theatre. Since its inception in 2005, the Texas Guitar Quartet (TxGQ) has been recognized as one of Texas’ top guitar ensembles and has garnered acclaim and critical praise on concert stages around the world and in a multitude of international guitar competitions. $20 general admission, $5 for students. Tickets may be purchased online or at the door. Call 334-484-3542 or visit www.troyartscouncil.com.

8

21

12-14

21

Chatom, Indian Artifact Show at the Chatom Community Center. Open 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Sponsored by the Rebel State Archaeological Society. No reproductions, fakes or illegally obtained artifacts are allowed at the show. Free admission. For display table reservations and additional information, contact Bimbo Kohen at 251-542-9456, 251-377-1191 or bimbo@millry.net.

and 21-22, Union Springs, “A Southern Exposure” at the Red Door Theatre. Britney is a sweet young thing itching for life outside of her small town when she announces that she’s fallen in love and is moving to New York City. It’s a comical southern play about love, sacrifice and the everlasting bond of family. Dinner is $15 and play tickets are $15. For information on show times and dinner reservations, call 334-7388687 or email conecuhpeople@knology.net.

14

Chatom, 8th Annual Mardi Gras Parade to be held downtown beginning at 10 a.m. Bands, many colorful and unique floats, dancing and much more. For information, call Chatom Town Hall at 251-847-2580.

15

Birmingham, 11th Annual Valentine Gala: Wild about Chocolate, benefitting the Alabama Wildlife Center. Featuring a variety of chocolate concoctions from Birmingham’s best restaurants, caterers and bakeries. Also enjoy savory appetizers, beverages (including complimentary wine), silent auction, live auction, and music. Buffet and silent auction begin at 6 p.m. followed by the live auction and program at 8 p.m. Cocktail attire. Tickets are available at the door for $100. For details or questions, please contact the Wildlife Center at 205-663-7930, ext. 8 or visit www.awrc.org.

Gadsden, 2015 Mr. & Miss Snowflake Beauty Pageant to be held at the Gadsden State Cherokee Arena, 3 p.m. Nine categories for ages 0-21. Sponsored by The Spirit of Cherokee (a non–profit organization), proceeds from this event help fund the Cherokee County Christmas Parade. For membership to The Spirit of Cherokee, call 256-927-8455. Montgomery, Selma-Montgomery Ride. The Montgomery Bicycle Club will have an organized bicycle ride from Selma to the Alabama State Capitol in Montgomery commemorating the historic Selma to Montgomery Voting Rights March. Registered riders will check in at the State Capitol building at 6 a.m. and be transported to Selma with their bikes. The ride begins at 9 a.m. with rest stops for food and drink along the way for registered riders. All proceeds benefit the Dexter Avenue Parsonage Museum. For details and registration, visit www.mgmbikeclub. org/Selma50Ride.

27

Chatom, 22nd Annual Art Auction and Dinner. Chatom Community Center, 5:30 p.m. Activities include dinner, silent and live auction, raffle and door prizes. Proceeds support the library by matching grant funds, expanding educational and technological resources and funding the summer reading programs. Tickets are $40 and may be purchased at the library. Information: 251-847-2097.

To place an event, e-mail events@alabamaliving.coop. or visit www.alabamaliving.coop. You can also mail to Events Calendar, P.O. Box 244014, Montgomery, AL 36124; Each submission must include a contact name and phone number. Deadline is two months prior to issue date. We regret that we cannot publish every event due to space limitations. Alabama Living

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FEBRUARY 2015  29


Alabama Gardens

An ideal time to find roses to love

F

ebruary is not only the month to give roses to the one you love, but it’s also a fine time to plant roses in Alabama. It’s also the perfect time to find a rose that can become your botanical soulmate. There are more than 100 rose varieties in the world and thousands of rose cultivars, with new ones coming out each year. This huge family of roses includes a plethora of botanical characteristics – roses with personalities that range from high-maintenance to practically no-maintenance; heirloom roses that have been around for centuries, as well as new-fangled roses that are the latest and hippest of the day; roses with blooms in all sorts of colors, shapes and fragrances; and roses with growth habits ranging from small, compact little wonders to larger shrub, trailing and climbing beauties. So how does one choose among all these options? The first step is to decide where a rose fits in your garden’s design needs. You may simply want a single rose to serve as a focal point in the landscape or to fill a pretty pot. Or you may want to plant shrub or groundcover roses enmasse to cover a bare hillside or bed. Maybe you want them to serve as a hedge or screen along a property line, or maybe you’d like to drape them on a trellis or fence line. Whatever your needs, you can find a rose to fill them. Once you have an idea of where roses fit in your life and landscape, the key to establishing a good relationship with them is to give them a home where they can thrive. Roses typically need a sunny spot

where they will receive at least six hours of sunlight each day. And they need a soil that will keep them thriving once they are in the ground. Roses prefer clayey, slightly acidic soils amended with organic matter, though they can do well in other soil types as long as the soil is well-drained and properly fertilized. With all these endless possibilities of roses to love, perhaps the best way to start a relationship with your roses is to do a little research before you pick one, and there are many sources of knowledge to use in finding your perfect rose mate. Among these is the American Rose Society, which is the parent organization to Alabama’s five active Society chapters, which exist in Birmingham, Huntsville, Dothan, Gadsden and Ramer and contacts for which can be found at www.rose. org. If heirloom roses are more to your liking, check out the Heritage Rose Foundation at www.heritagerosefoundation.org. Or, as always, check with your local nurseries, Master Gardeners or an Alabama Cooperative Extension office for ideas and advice. They are all great sources of help in understanding what roses will do best in your neck of the woods, advice for planting and caring for your roses and in helping you make a match that will last for years to come. In addition to these and other organizations, there are also many great books, magazines and websites that focus on roses, a number of which concentrate specifi-

cally on growing roses in the South. Just do a web search to explore the options or visit your local library to check out a book or two that can keep you company during the cold weeks of February and maybe even kindle a new botanical romance. A

February Gardening Tips d Order seeds for the spring and summer garden.

d Plant roses and other shrubs and hardy perennials.

d Plant dormant fruit, nut and ornamental trees.

d Plant seeds for warm-season

vegetables, such as tomatoes, peppers and summer bedding plants, in cold frames or indoor settings. d Begin planting summer-blooming bulbs. d Prune summer-flowering shrubs now. Hold off on pruning springflowering shrubs until after they bloom! d Clean out moldy or sprouting seeds before refilling bird feeders. d Attend gardening workshops and classes or get involved with your local gardening groups. d Shop for off-season garden supplies that may be on sale this time of year. d Repair and spruce up window boxes, lawn furniture, birdhouses and feeders, garden tools and other outdoor equipment and items.

Katie Jackson is a freelance writer and editor based in Opelika, Alabama. Contact her at katielamarjackson@ gmail.com.

30  FEBRUARY 2015

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Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2015  31


Worth the Drive

Auburn

Ariccia: Serving romance with every dish

Valentine’s destination: Auburn’s Ariccia Italian Trattoria.

By Jennifer Kornegay

W

hat’s the most romantic movie scene you can think of? The dinner scene from “Lady and the Tramp” ranks right up at the top of my list. The depiction of budding love blossoming over a plate of spaghetti and meatballs is simple and sweet. This Valentine’s Day, follow the furry couple’s lead, and take your significant other out to dinner. You, too, can canoodle over noodles and other Italian favorites (minus the alley and accordion serenade) at Ariccia, housed in The Hotel at Auburn University in Auburn. Named for a town in Central Italy, this restaurant serves a side of amore with every delicious dish. Flickering sconces and a single votive candle on every table cast a warm glow over the large dining area, but ask for one of the cozy, curved booths for a more intimate atmosphere. Start with a glass of wine from the nice-sized “by-the-glass” list, and munch on herbed focaccia bread (with olive oil and balsamic for dipping) while you look over the menu. Take note of the cedar-plank salmon; it made the “100 Alabama Dishes to Eat Before You Die” list. If you want to keep things light, peruse the antipasti selections. Soothing tomato bisque with salty parmesan crisps, a cheese board featuring Alabama’s own Belle Chevre goat cheese and calamari with a spicy sauce: You could make a meal out of items on this section alone. But then you’d miss the entrees. On certain nights, Ariccia offers a pasta bar, a steal Jennifer Kornegay travels to an out-ofthe way restaurant destination in Alabama every month. She may be reached for comment at j_kornegay@charter. net. Check out more of Jennifer’s food writing, recipes and recommendations on her blog, Chew on This at www. jenniferkornegay.com.

32  FEBRUARY 2015

of deal at $15.95 that lets you create your own idea of perfect. Choose your sauce, a meat (chicken, meatballs or shrimp) and veggies from a vast array, and if you can’t pick just one combination, that’s okay. You can go back as many times as your stomach will allow. On the menu, options including Chicken Saltimbocca, classic Osso Buco, rigatoni swimming in hearty bolognese sauce and the complex collaboration of sweet, savory, bitter and tart found in the fig and pear pizza will transport your taste buds straight to Italy. I opted for the Bisteca, a hefty 12-ounce rosemary- and sea salt-seasoned sirloin accompanied by thick wedges of skin-on Tuscan fries covered in parmesan lace and served with a flavorful herb sauce. The steak was seared to a just-right char on the outside yet tender enough for a butter knife’s cut to reveal a juicy pink center. But the potatoes were the best things on the plate. Slather them with the sauce and combine with a bite of the beef, and your only complaint will be that there just weren’t enough of them. Maybe it’s a good thing, though. If you ate your weight in potatoes, you’d be too full to indulge in dessert, and what’s Valentine’s Day without chocolate? Skip the heartshaped box from the drugstore, and instead, overload on the obligatory V-Day treat by ordering Ariccia’s Chocolate Trio, a decadent selection of varied textures and tastes with cocoa shining in the starring role. The fluffy chocolate spice cake, dense flourless chocolate torte and a creamy, dreamy chocolate-citrus semi fredo will require attending a few chocoholics anonymous meetings later in the month, but every bite is worth it. There may not a be a mustached Italian chef singing to you as you dine, but the experience at Ariccia has all the makings of a beautiful evening and should have you humming “Bella Noche” to yourself as you leave. A

Ariccia Italian Trattoria 241 S. College St., Auburn 334-844-5140 www.auhcc.com

More to love

If you’re nowhere near Auburn, don’t fret. Our state is blessed with plenty of spots that’ll satisfy your appetite for love. Here are a few of my favorites.

Fisher’s Upstairs, Orange Beach

Awash in the soft colors of the sea, this fine dining restaurant is always a winner. You can’t choose wrong when ordering here. Every one of Chef Bill Briand’s delicious dishes is created using the freshest local ingredients, including seafood straight from Alabama’s Gulf waters. Go for the Oysters Earle.

Odette, Florence

In downtown Florence, Odette’s slim, sleek dining room (built into a 100-year-old building) is the place to sample Chef Josh Quick’s innovative twists on familiar flavors. Try the red curry deviled farm eggs. (You’ll never truly enjoy a regular deviled egg again.)

Central, Montgomery

This downtown eatery boasts soaring ceilings lit by oversized gas lanterns, brick walls and exposed wood beams overhead. But the dining room with atmosphere to spare is only the beginning. Chef Leonardo Maurelli is in the kitchen, turning out some of the best plates in the state. Order the Hickory Crisped Duck Quarters.

Our Place, Wetumpka

Rustic, homey, warm and even elegant are the words that spring to mind when you walk into Our Place. Offering fine dining without any fussy attitude, it welcomes you to make it your place too. Don’t miss the bread pudding here.

Nick’s in the Sticks, Tuscaloosa

What it lacks in ambiance, this casual joint makes up for in plain ole good eats. What says “I love you” more than a reasonably priced filet mignon and a sugary, yet deceptively stiff drink in a plastic foam cup?

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Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2015  33


Breads Alabama Recipes

Cook of the month: Calli Pittman, Joe Wheeler EMC

You could win $50! Upcoming recipe themes and deadlines are: April May June

Cookies February 15 Mom’s Best Dish March 15 Dad’s Favorite Dish April 15

Submit

online at alabamaliving.coop email to recipes@alabamaliving.coop mail to: Recipes, P.O. Box 244014 Montgomery, AL 36124

Easy Whole Wheat Bread

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Bread 4 teaspoons instant dry yeast 1/3 cup warm water 1/3 cup warm whole milk 2 eggs, room temp. 1/3 cup peanut butter, room temperature

2 11/2 1/4 2/3 1/2

teaspoons vanilla cups flour cup sugar teaspoon salt cup chocolate chips

Streusel: 1/3 cup flour 3 tablespoons brown sugar 2 tablespoons butter Freeze chocolate chips  for 30 minutes.  Mix the yeast and warm liquids in bread mixer until yeast dissolves.  Mix in eggs, peanut butter and vanilla.  Add chocolate chips and mix.  Add flour, salt and sugar.  If the dough is not pulling away from the sides, add more flour until it does.  Knead until soft, springy and no longer sticky.  Coat a bowl with oil.  Put the dough in the bowl and roll to evenly coat with oil.  Lightly cover with plastic wrap and a damp tea towel.  Let rise in a warm place until double in size, about 35 minutes.  Spray a 9x5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray as well as a couple smaller 5x3-inch pans.  Gently deflate dough and transfer to a floured surface.  Cut the dough, then place in pans.  Let rise again in a warm place for about 30 minutes.  Mix the flour and sugar in a small bowl.  Cut in butter until crumbly.  When  loaves have risen, sprinkle with  topping  and bake at 350 degrees.  The larger loaf takes about 25 minutes; the smaller ones about 10 minutes.  Cool slightly and remove from pans.

Cornbread recipe clarification

In the November 2014 Alabama Living, we included a recipe for “Eddie’s No Fail Cornbread.” Some readers have pointed out that the recipe did not include a leavening agent in the ingredients. The recipe should have specified self-rising cornmeal. 34  FEBRUARY 2015

6 to 61/2 cups whole wheat flour 21/2 cups warm water 11/2 tablespoons instant yeast

1/3 cup honey 1/3 cup oil 21/2 teaspoons salt

Combine water, yeast and 2 cups of flour in a mixing bowl. Set aside to rise for 15 minutes. Add honey, oil, salt and 4 cups of flour. Mix until dough starts to clean sides of bowl. Change to dough hook (or turn out to knead by hand), and knead 6 to 7 minutes (10 by hand). Add only tablespoons of flour if dough sticks to sides, being careful not to add too much. Form into two loaves and place in greased 9×5-inch pans. Allow to rise in a warm place for about 60 minutes (1-2 inches above pans). Preheat oven to 350 degrees ten minutes before rising time is done. Bake for 30 minutes, rotating halfway through, if needed. Immediately remove from pans to cool on a rack. Makes 2 loaves. Lianne Robinson, Tombigbee EC There is a special woman in my church who gives the children’s choir directors homemade bread loaves for teacher gifts. That bread always sets a new record for how fast it disappears in our house. Baking homemade bread is a very worthwhile thing to try. It’s inexpensive, healthy and teaches you a lot about how to cook at home. Best of all (for me, anyway), it makes mindblowingly good toast. There are few things better than spreading a bit of butter on homemade toast. I hope you try some of these bread recipes and let me know how you like them.

Mary Tyler Spivey is a graduate of Huntingdon College where she studied history and French but she also has a passion for great food. Contact her at recipes@alabamaliving.coop.

Editor’s Note: Alabama Living’s recipes are submitted by our readers. They are not kitchen-tested by a professional cook or registered dietician. If you have special dietary needs, please check with your doctor or nutritionist before preparing any recipe.

Want to see recipes, feature stories, and other Alabama happenings during the month? LIke Alabama Living on facebook and don’t miss anything!

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Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2015  35


Penny Rolls

1 1 1/4 1

cup warm water package yeast cup sugar tablespoon oil

Beer Bread 1 teaspoon salt 1 egg 3 to 4 cups flour

Beat all ingredients except flour. Slowly add flour until a soft dough has formed. The softer the dough, the lighter the roll. Form a ball and place in a greased bowl. Cover and let rise 1 hour in a warm place. Punch down the dough, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate. Keeps about two weeks in the refrigerator. To use, grease as many openings in a cupcake or muffin pan as the amount of rolls you wish to bake, and pinch off 2-4 small balls for each greased opening for segmented rolls, or 1 larger ball for a non-segmented roll. Cover and let rise one hour in a warm place. Bake at 350 degrees until golden brown, about 10-20 minutes.

1 beer, room temperature Self-rising flour (see recipe)

1 teaspoon baking powder Cooking-spray Melted butter

Pour can or bottle of beer into a mixing bowl. Add and stir in enough self-rising flour, along with a teaspoon of baking powder to form a sticky ball. Pour mixture onto a cookie sheet (sprayed non-stick). Spread out to approximately one-inch thick, but not critical. Bake in oven at 350 degrees. When it begins to brown, remove and baste with melted butter.  I like to put in some garlic powder in my butter. Bake until golden brown. John Mercer, Southern Pine EC

Angel Lucke, Cullman EC

Apple Cider Sourdough Bread 6 1 1/4 1/2 1 11/2

cups bread flour tablespoon salt cup sugar cup corn oil cup sourdough starter cups good quality fresh apple cider

Cinnamon and sugar mixture, reserved for later 2 Granny Smith apples, diced in small pieces

Mix and knead dough as usual, excluding last two ingredients. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise for 8-12 hours. Knead dough and separate into 5 equal portions.  Flatten dough, sprinkle entire surface with cinnamon and sugar mix and then apple chunks. Roll up/braid loaf and allow to rise in baking pans for anther 8-12 hours. Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes. Serve toasted with jam and butter or makes wonderful French toast.

Cheery Cherry Bread 2 eggs   1 cup sugar 1 6-ounce jar maraschino cherries, drained (reserve liquid for use) 3/4 cup chopped pecans 11/4 teaspoon salt

11/2 cups plain flour 11/2 teaspoons baking powder 4 tablespoons vegetable oil Cooking spray

Jaymi Ray, Joe Wheeler EMC

Beat eggs in sugar. Add nuts to batter. Alternate dry ingredients with reserved cherry juice, beating after each entry. Pour into baking loaf pan (spray with Pam). Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Serves 12.

Banana Bread

Becky Chappelle Cullman EC

1/2 cup butter 1 cup brown sugar 2 eggs 2 bananas in pieces 2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/4 cup nuts (optional)

Cheese Biscuits 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese 2 cups self-rising flour

1 cup milk Non-stick cooking spray 1/2 stick butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream butter and sugar, add eggs. Beat well and then add bananas and mix. Add 1 cup flour, baking soda, salt and mix well. Add 1 cup flour and nuts and mix just until the flour disappears. Don’t over mix at the last mix, as this is key to a light a fluffy loaf. Pour into a greased/ floured loaf pan; put into the oven and set timer for 45 minutes. Let cool and remove from pan. Enjoy with a little butter melted on top and a side of pear or apple.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Apply cooking spray to cookie sheet. In a bowl, combine cheese and flour. Add milk and stir well. Drop dough by heaping spoonfuls about 2 inches apart onto cookie sheet. Bake for 15-18 minutes until brown. While biscuits bake, melt 1/2 stick butter (add two teaspoons garlic powder if desired). When biscuits are done and still hot, use a spoon to drizzle the melted butter over top of each biscuit. Makes about 18-20 biscuits.

Memory Bush, South AL EC

Delores Childree, Baldwin EMC

36  FEBRUARY 2015

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Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2015  37


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How To Place a Line Ad in Marketplace

Closing Deadlines (in our office:

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Ads are $1.75 per word with a 10 word minimum and are on a prepaid basis; Telephone numbers, email addresses and websites are considered 1 word each. Ads will not be taken over the phone. You may email your ad to hdutton@areapower.com; or call (800)410-2737 ask for Heather for pricing.; We accept checks, money orders and all major credit cards. Mail ad submission along with a check or money order made payable to ALABAMA LIVING, P.O. Box 244014, Montgomery, AL 36124 – Attn: Classifieds.

38  FEBRUARY 2015

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Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2015  39


Alabama Outdoors

Wives, don’t let your husbands grow up to own boats By John N. Felsher

T

he coming of spring in Alabama way? You can only ride one at a time.” I have in my purse now, minus the money means boat shows. Many people “People like different sports. Some for dinner. Why do boats come in such go to see the new models of boats people like fishing boats. Some people like gaudy, bright sparkly colors? I would think on display and try to get some great “show ski boats. Some people just like to cruise you would want to hide from the fish – or only” deals. Others just go to fantasize around.” at least from the bill collectors!” about what they would like to own, but “How about that one? I like that one,” “When fish see something like this, can’t afford. she pointed. “If we are going to get a boat, they line up to get caught. They all want to For some, it’s an opportunity to get out let’s at least get one that comes equipped ride in the livewell on such a pretty boat. with the loved ones. A trip to the boat show with a satellite TV dish so I can watch my Wouldn’t this look good pulled behind my with a wife might go something like this: shows as we cruise along.” new truck?” “You promised to take me out and treat “Well, Sweetums, that would be nice, but “Is that why you never bring home any me to an expensive dinner,” said my wife, that’s not a boat. That’s a diesel-powered fish? You fish in a drab, ugly boat? Hey, Sweetums. “You promised to take me to mansion. I took a trip on one almost like what new truck?” she asked incredulously. a show. Instead, we are in this auditorium that once, but the captain kept launching “Well, it’s almost a new truck,” I replied. with all these boats.” “I have a new starter, new alternator, “Well, honey. We are out,” I exnew radiator, new fan belts, new hoses, plained. “This is a show. It’s a boat new tires, new transmission. See, it’s show. As for dinner, just walk over practically new except for the same old there and order anything you like. You body falling apart.” want mustard or ketchup with that dog? “Yours or the truck?” Heck, I’ll even spring for nachos with “Funny! In this boat, I could get extra cheese. There’s a seat between fresh air, sunshine and more exercise. that whiny kid and the old wheezing It’s an investment in my health. I’m only guy smoking the cigar. At least it IS an thinking of you and how much I love expensive dinner!” you and want to be around longer to “Yeah, right, we could have ordered stay with you.” steak for that price.” “I cannot begin to describe how “Wouldn’t this look good pulled behind my truck?” “Wives just don’t appreciate the fine PHOTO BY JOHN FELSHER deeply that moved me, or maybe it was culture of enjoying a boat show. They just the chili on the hot dog. Anyway, cannot appreciate the shine of new chrome, jet fighters off it. That one would cost more if you bought this boat, I would never see the glint of metalflake paint, the exhibits of that my annual salary just to fill the fuel you. Wait, that’s an idea! I’m almost connew devices to attach to an old boat. Oh, tank. Besides, if you want quality, you al- vinced. No, not quite, but it was a good ready have me.” thought while it lasted. It’s much more the smells!” “Oh, pa-leeeese! I rest my case. Is that a fun to have you around obeying my every “Honey, that’s the guy with the cigar you’re smelling and I think that kid’s whin- rainbow over there? I see every color imag- whim. If you really want to exercise, why ing because he did something in his diaper. inable. Maybe it’s just a reaction from that don’t you buy that rowboat over there?” Why do people need so many boats any- ‘gourmet’ dinner.” “I already own a rowboat, Sweetums. “Sweetums, that’s a rainbow of aquatic Don’t you remember? Every time I take our delight waiting to be explored. They have old boat out, the motor runs great until I John N. Felsher is every type of fishing boat on the planet reach the farthest point on the lake away a freelance writer and photographer in just about every color. The dealer said from the landing. Then it conks out. I have who now lives in he’s ready to move this one. They won’t to row it back to the landing.” Semmes, Ala. He co-hosts a weekly make this model again until next year so “Speaking of going back, looks like outdoors show that is it’s kind of like a collector’s item! Sure, it’s they’re shutting the doors, FINALLY! Next syndicated to stations in Alabama. For more 199 monthly payments, but the dealer said week we go where I want to go. You’re in on the show, log on to they are easy payments with only 10 per- luck. There’s an all-day sale of frilly lace www.gdomag.com. Contact him through cent down. How much is in your purse?” kitchen decorations at a mall just two hours his website at www. don’t know, ” she said. “How much was “I from home. If we start early, we can study JohnNFelsher.com in your wallet last night? That’s how much every item.” A 40  FEBRUARY 2015

www.alabamaliving.coop


Tables indicate peak fish and game feeding and migration times. Major periods can bracket the peak by an hour before and an hour after. Minor peaks, half-hour before and after. Adjusted for daylight savings time. a.m. p.m. Minor Major Minor Major

FEB. 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 MAR. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31

09:01 04:16 02:01 09:31 10:01 05:01 03:01 10:16 10:46 05:31 04:01 11:01 11:16 06:01 05:01 11:46 - - 06:31 12:01 05:46 07:01 12:31 12:46 06:31 07:31 01:01 01:31 07:16 08:01 01:46 08:16 02:16 02:16 08:31 09:16 03:01 02:46 09:01 10:46 04:01 03:16 09:31 - - 05:16 01:31 10:16 - - 06:46 04:16 11:31 - - 08:01 09:16 04:31 01:16 09:01 10:01 04:46 02:31 09:46 10:31 05:16 03:31 10:31 11:01 05:31 04:16 11:01 11:31 05:46 05:01 11:31 11:46 06:01 - - 05:31 06:16 12:01 12:16 06:16 06:31 12:16 06:46 12:46 07:01 12:46 07:16 01:16 01:16 07:16 08:01 01:46 01:46 07:31 08:46 02:16 02:16 08:01 09:46 02:46 02:46 08:31 11:16 03:46 03:31 09:01 - - 05:01 01:46 10:16 - - 06:46 07:46 03:01 12:01 08:01 09:01 03:46 01:46 09:01 09:46 04:16 03:01 10:01 10:31 04:46 04:01 10:46 11:01 05:16 05:01 11:31 05:46 11:46 - - 05:46 06:16 12:01 06:31 12:31 12:46 06:46 07:31 01:01 01:16 07:16 08:16 01:46 01:46 07:46 09:16 02:31 02:31 08:01 10:46 03:31 03:01 08:31 - - 04:31 12:46 09:01 - - 05:46 10:01 03:01 - - 07:16 09:31 03:31 01:01 08:16 09:46 04:01 02:31 09:16 10:16 04:16 03:31 09:46 10:31 04:31 04:16 10:31

Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2015â&#x20AC;&#x192; 41


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Alabama Living

PIONEER

FEBRUARY 2015  43


Our Sources Say

Climate change prediction isn’t an exact science

H

all of Fame baseball player and philosopher Yogi Berra said, “It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.” He was right, but that doesn’t stop us from predicting football game outcomes, the stock market, the weather and so many other things. And Yogi was right, our predictions are often wrong because predicting the future is tough. Predicting the future of global warming, climate change and weather patterns has become the business of a number of scientists, climatologists, physicists and politicians. Those predictions have proven to be really tough, but that hasn’t stopped them or impeded the call for more and more environmental regulation. In 1971, Dr. Paul Ehrlich, Stanford University professor and author of the 1968 Environmentalist Guidebook, The Population Bomb, forecasted that because of global cooling the United Kingdom would simply be a small group of impoverished islands, inhabited by some 70 million hungry people by 2000. He stated, “I would take even money that England will not exist in the year 2000 and will give 10:1 odds that the life of the average Briton would be of lower quality than it is today.” Dr. Ehrlich has since changed his position and now asserts the earth faces catastrophic global warming that will eradicate world food resources and will result in humans resorting to cannibalism to survive. In his 1981 book, Extinction, Dr. Ehrlich stated that his models predicted, “…half the populations and species of the world’s rainforests would be extinct by 2000 and none would be left by 2025.” (Why do we allow people like this to teach our young people?) In 1989, the United Nations’ Environmental Programme (UNEP), sponsor of the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), predicted, “Entire nations could be wiped off the face of the earth by rising sea levels if global warming is not reversed by the year 2000.” In 2005, UNEP warned that by 2010 some 50 million people would be “climate refugees” frantically fleeing low lying areas in the Caribbean, the Pacific Islands, China and the U.S. because of imminent sea-level rises, increased hurricanes and desertification caused by man-made global warming. The U.N.’s 2007 IPCC Report suggested the Himalayan glaciers could melt by 2035 or sooner. Since then the IPCC has backed away from those predictions and, at times, even denied they were ever made. Not to be left out, the Pentagon commissioned a 2003 report that

Gary Smith is President and CEO of PowerSouth Energy Cooperative.

44 FEBRUARY 2015

found climate change was a national security concern, predicting that within the next 10 years (2013) California would be flooded with inland seas, parts of the Netherlands would be unlivable, polar ice would be all but gone, and surging temperatures would cause mass increases in hurricanes, tornadoes and other natural disasters. All of which would spark resource shortages and, potentially, global wars. Co-author, Doug Randall, defended his predictions by stating, “When you are looking at worse-case scenarios 10 years out, you are not trying to predict precisely what’s going to happen but instead trying to get people to understand what could happen to motivate strategic decision-making and wake people up. But whether the actual specifics came true, of course they didn’t. That was never the main intent.” Now, that is a scientific study. In 1988, Jim Hansen, past director of NASA’s Goddard Institute and one of the most out-spoken climatologists and global warming alarmists, stated, “Within the next 20 years (2008) the Westside Highway (that runs along the Hudson River in New York City) will be under water. There will be tape across the windows across the street because of high winds. And the same birds won’t be there. The trees in the median strip will change… there will be more police cars since you know what happens to crime when the heat goes up.” In 1990, Princeton professor and lead UN IPCC author Michael Oppenheimer predicted that within five years (1995), “The greenhouse effect would be desolating the heartlands of North America and Eurasia with horrific drought, causing crop failures and food riots. By 1996 the Platte River of Nebraska will be dry, while a black blizzard of prairie topsoil will stop traffic on interstates, strip paint from houses and shut down computers. The situation will be so bad that Mexican police will round up illegal American migrants surging into Mexico seeking work as field hands.” Dr. John Holdren, White House Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy (President Obama’s science czar) warned in the 1980s as a University of California physicist that it was possible carbon dioxide-induced famines could kill as many as a billion people by the year 2020. Upon questioning, Dr. Holdren recently commented, “My statement in the 1980s about the potential impacts of climate change on world food production by 2020 was not a prediction or a forecast. It was precisely a statement about what is possible. There are still five years left. But the prospects of avoiding such an outcome … will be greatly improved if this country follows through on the sensible measures in the President’s Climate Action Plan.” Yogi was right. It is tough to predict the future. Maybe climate alarmists should get a pass because by their standards they aren’t making predictions, only suggesting possibilities. How smart is a billion-dollar bet on possibilities? I hope you have a good month. A www.alabamaliving.coop


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Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2015  45


Alabama Snapshots 3

1

2

7

6

4

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Sweethearts 1. Rickey and Sarah Connell, married since 1971. SUBMITTED BY Sarah Connell, Clanton. 2. Sarah Williamson, with her sweetheart, on her 3rd birthday. SUBMITTED BY Donna Eakins, Henagar. 3. Spence and Priscilla. SUBMITTED BY Rick Maddox, Deatsville. 4. Davis and Cynthia McGalliard with their children Peyton and Hayden. SUBMITTED BY Cynthia McGalliard, Wetumpka. 5. Evelyn and Leon Napier. SUBMITTED BY Evelyn Napier, Gilbertown. 6. Cody and Ashley Mass, sweethearts for 13 years. SUBMITTED BY Ashley Mass, Boaz. 7. Handley and Dorothy Mitchell, sweethearts for almost 50 years. SUBMITTED BY Joan Dixson, Woodland. 46  FEBRUARY 2015

Submit Your Images! APRIL THEME:

“My favorite pet”

SUBMIT PHOTOS THROUGH OUR WEBSITE: alabamaliving.coop/submit-photo/ OR SEND COLOR PHOTOS WITH A LARGE SELFADDRESSED STAMPED ENVELOPE TO:

Photos, Alabama Living, P.O. Box 244014 Montgomery, AL, 36124 RULES: Alabama Living will pay $10 for photos that best match our theme of the month. Photos may also be published on our website at www.alabamaliving.coop. Alabama Living is not responsible for lost or damaged photos. DEADLINE FOR APRIL: Feb. 28

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