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Stories | Recipes | Events | People | Places | Things | Local News November 2020

South Alabama Electric Cooperative


Life on the road Harry Richardson’s career behind the wheel



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Time for pie!

November is the perfect time to bake a homemade apple pie, or any kind of pie, for that matter. And don’t let the fear of making a homemade crust put a crimp in your plans. Store-bought crusts are just fine, especially when you’ve got a delicious filling like the one perfected by our favorite blogger at The Buttered Home! Manager David Bailey Produced by the staff of South Alabama Electric Cooperative 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. Subscriptions are $12 a year for individuals not subscribing through participating Alabama electric cooperatives. 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.

30 F E A T U R E S


Jesus 2020


Life on the road


AREA President Fred Braswell Editor Lenore Vickrey Managing Editor Allison Law Creative Director Mark Stephenson Art Director Danny Weston Advertising Director Jacob Johnson Graphic Designer/Ad Coordinator Brooke Echols

VOL. 73 NO. 11  November 2020

How a local campaign made a splash nationwide. Harry Richardson shares his stories of a career behind the wheel.

New deer zones 26 Alabama has made some changes to

its game laws, including creating two new deer hunting zones.



340 TechnaCenter Drive Montgomery, Alabama 36117-6031 1-800-410-2737 For advertising, email: advertising@areapower.com For editorial inquiries, email: contact@alabamaliving.coop NATIONAL ADVERTISING REPRESENTATIVE:

American MainStreet Publications 611 South Congress Ave., Suite 504 Austin, Texas 78704 1-800-626-1181 www.AMP.coop www.alabamaliving.coop USPS 029-920 • ISSN 1047-0311


D E P A R T M E N T S 11 Spotlight 24 Thanksgiving Crossword 26 Outdoors 27 Fish & Game Forecast 30 Recipes 38 Hardy Jackson’s Alabama ONLINE: alabamaliving.coop ON THE COVER

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Harry Richardson has collected all kinds of stories and memorabilia during a career driving buses across the country. Learn more on Page 6. PHOTO: Joey Meredith



www.alabamaliving.coop letters@alabamaliving.coop Alabama Living 340 Technacenter Drive Montgomery, AL 36117

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Make your voice heard Board of Trustees James Shaver President District 2

Delaney Kervin Vice President District 5

Douglas Green Secretary/Treasurer District 6

District 1

James May At Large

Glenn Reeder District 7

Raymond Trotter District 3

Ben Fox District 4

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David Bailey, General Manager

Usually, the month of November is a time when we are focused on Thanksgiving, Veterans Day and hunting. My family might say hunting is a year-round obsession for me, and to that I say, “Guilty!” But this year we have a presidential election that takes the spotlight from just about everything else. By the time you read this, I hope that every SAEC member has either exercised their right to vote or is preparing to do so. Cooperative members know all about the democratic process. While the majority owner of a corporation might have the only vote that matters, every vote counts the same in a cooperative. That is the beauty of the cooperative business model, and it is one of our most valued principles. Hopefully, each of you exercised that right of your membership at our annual meeting last month. Due to the unusual circumstances of this presidential election, there has been a lot of discussion about how we vote in this country. Anyone who wants to vote in the United States must be registered, at least 18 years old, a citizen and, in Alabama, not convicted of certain felonies. When you cast your vote on Election Day, you are actually directing other people, known as electors, to vote on your behalf. Most states have a winner-takes-all system, meaning no matter how close the race is, the winning candidate gets all of that state’s electors. Those electors go to the state capital to cast their votes for president and vice president as part of the Electoral College. Why does the process work this way? For the framers of the Constitution, it was a compromise between those who wanted the president to be elected by Congress and those who believed they should be chosen by a popular vote. Personally, I think the framers must have been guided by God to create such a just system. I can’t imagine Congress choosing the president when they seemingly can’t agree on anything. On the other hand, a popular vote would leave the election in the hands of only the most populated states like California, Texas and New York. Despite the Electoral College’s advantages, a Pew Research Study in March 2020 found that 58% of adults in the U.S. are in favor of amending the Constitution so that the popular vote would decide the presidential election. Perhaps

those people should study the Electoral College system a little more. It isn’t perfect, but it ensures the less populated parts of our country are fairly represented. By the way, did you know that of the 58 presidential elections in our history, 53 of the winners took both the Electoral College and the popular vote? If you can name the five who lost the popular vote, email them to me at davidb@southaec.com. Driving around our service area over the past few months, I’ve noticed several signs in driveways and front yards that are for a different kind of campaign. The first time I saw one of these “Jesus 2020” signs, I thought, “Now, that’s a great candidate.” It wasn’t until a few weeks later that I found out this program started in a ladies’ Sunday school class in Ramer. In such a hostile political environment, this kind of campaign is a breath of fresh air. I hope you will take a moment to read the article on the following page. Hats off to those ladies for developing a program that has taken off worldwide and can put hope in everyone’s heart. You can also read about Harry Richardson, who has driven our Youth Tour students to the state capital for several years now. Not only has he always treated these kids like family, but he also has so many amazing experiences to share with them and with us. I am always taken aback by the wide range of interesting people just in our small service area. I also don’t want to forget to mark Veterans Day on Nov. 11. Each year, this day gives us the opportunity to honor the men and women who have served our country so we still have the ability to vote and exercise our God-given freedoms. I would like to thank all of our brave veterans for their service and say a special thank you to my father, Lt. Colonel Joseph W. Bailey (Retired), for his service in the U.S. Army. Finally, I would like to thank all of our members for trusting me to manage this electric cooperative. This year has been interesting, to say the least. I have learned a great deal more about viruses, major storms and building construction than I ever wanted to know. Until next month, please remember to use your electricity wisely, stay safe and go vote! n


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LOCAL CHURCH PUTS ‘Jesus 2020’ IN THE RACE NATIONWIDE South Alabama residents may have noticed signs for a new third-party candidate popping up in front of houses in their neighborhood. Mixed in among the yard signs for one political candidate or another are an increasing number of campaign-style signs that read “Jesus 2020.” The campaign for Jesus started in July at Sampey Memorial Baptist Church in Ramer when Joyce Hubbard and another member of the church, Martha Sikes, were concerned that Christians throughout the country were not making their voices heard. “Everyone was just frustrated and tired of all the political rhetoric,” says Hubbard. "We decided we would put Jesus on a sign and put it out there for everyone to see, like they do with politicians. We just wanted Jesus to be visible.” They started by printing 200 signs to give out to members of the church and others in the community. The first batch proved so popular that they turned to Wells Printing Co. in Montgomery for help making more. “We didn’t have any idea where it would go, but we prayed about it and just wanted to be the spark that started the campaign and the ministry,” Hubbard says.

Just a few months later, Hubbard and Sampey Memorial have given away more than 7,000 “Jesus 2020” signs, and Wells Printing has printed 30,000 others for orders coming in from outside Alabama. Those orders have come from states all across the country and even locations as far away as Puerto Rico and Nigeria. Each sign the church gives out is free, but Hubbard says Sampey Memorial has received enough donations to cover more than half the money spent on the campaign. Wells Printing has even printed the signs at a lower cost to support the cause. “We felt like there is so much on TV, signs and billboards everywhere you look, but you don’t see Jesus anywhere. So we put him right out there among everything else,” Hubbard says. "Everyone who has put that sign in their yard is part of this ministry.” Hubbard hopes the campaign will continue to gain momentum beyond the presidential election and even the end of the year. She and other members of her Sunday school class already have some new ideas in the works to keep their ministry going. “I’ve had so many conversations with people just like us who feel like Jesus has been put aside and we need a revival in this country,” Hubbard says. “People will always need to elect Jesus to lead them, so a campaign like this never really ends.” n

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Contact Information Mailing address P.O. Box 449 Troy, AL 36081

Website www.southaec.com

Phone 334-566-2060 800-556-2060


Find us here:

Payment Options SAEC App Available from the App Store and Google Play BY MAIL P.O. Box 449 Troy, AL 36081 WEBSITE www.southaec.com PHONE PAYMENTS 877-566-0611, credit cards accepted NIGHT DEPOSITORY Available at our Highway 231 office, day or night PAYMENT POINTS Regions Bank - Troy branch Troy Bank and Trust - all branch locations 1st National Bank of Brundidge and Troy First Citizens - Luverne branch Banks Buy Rite - Banks Country 1 Stop - Honoraville IN PERSON 13192 U.S. 231, Troy, AL 36081 Office Hours: Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.

Questions? For questions concerning Capital Credits, contact: capital.credits@southaec.com For questions concerning Billing, contact: billing@southaec.com For questions concerning Construction, contact: construction@southaec.com Alabama Living

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Gone to look for America

Harry Richardson’s life behind the wheel

Harry Richardson has a display of class photos that were taken while he drove the bus for the International Fellows of the United States National Defense University. PHOTO CONTRIBUTED BY JOEY MEREDITH

By the time he turned 24, Harry Richardson had grown used to being called small. It hadn’t stopped him from serving for six years as an Army engineer, but on the hunt for a new job in Memphis, he kept running into the same roadblock. “I’m just a little guy, but I’ve got some spunk in me,” he says. “But at that time in history, there were height and weight requirements for some jobs.” His first idea was to apply to be a motorcycle policeman. They told him he was too short and didn’t weigh enough. Next, he went to the fire department, where they said the same thing. Then he saw in the paper that Greyhound Lines was hiring bus drivers. When Richardson showed up, he quickly realized he was the youngest and smallest of the more than 60 people applying. He took the written test anyway and left expecting to be passed over once again. Later, when the hiring manager called him, he heard a familiar refrain. But this time there was a twist. Harry Richardson visited this 1957 Ford Fairlane convertible frequently over the years on his trips out west and eventually purchased the car when the owner closed the car museum it was displayed in. PHOTO CONTRIBUTED BY JOEY MEREDITH

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Harry Richardson’s favorite model bus is part of his collection of Greyhound and bus memorabilia he has acquired over his years of driving around the country. PHOTO CONTRIBUTED BY JOEY MEREDITH

“The guy called me up and said, ‘Richardson, you’re too short and you don’t weigh enough.’ I told him I’d heard that before. Then he said, ‘But you’re the only one who passed the test.’ So I became a Greyhound bus driver.” Now 76, Richardson has never stopped driving, whether for Greyhound, for his own bus company or to shuttle South Alabama Electric Cooperative’s representatives for the Montgomery Youth Tour to the state capital. While it may not have been his first choice, there is no place he would rather be than behind the wheel. “I’ve been driving a bus for 51 years now and covered over 4.5 million miles,” Richardson says. “I guess you could say it’s in my blood.”

Each year Harry Richardson drives students from SAEC, Pea River Electric and Wiregrass Electric to the Montgomery Youth Tour where they learn about state government and the role electric cooperatives have in our state’s history.

Leave the driving to him

Richardson didn’t know much about driving buses when he joined Greyhound, and he had no choice but to learn fast. One of the most important skills he picked up along the way was how to manage people, and not always under friendly circumstances. Alabama Living

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“With Greyhound, I drove so many different types of people, from poor to rich, foreign or domestic,” he says. “You learn a lot about people and how to handle different personalities. In my decades driving for them, I probably had to have 400 peo-

ple pulled off the bus for being disruptive.” That calm under pressure and dedication to his passengers’ safety would also set Richardson apart as he vied for the privilege of transporting famed football coach and commentator John Madden. NOVEMBER 2020  7

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Since Madden didn’t like to fly, Greyhound buses would ferry him from game to game during the NFL season. “It was like the pony express, because drivers would pass him off to each other to get him to his next game,” Richardson says. “We would have a bus driver rodeo to decide his drivers.” Those rodeos included navigating through cones forward and backward, as well as tests where each driver would be timed on their ability to find hidden deficiencies in their bus. The competition could be tough, and only two drivers were selected from each state. “I was one of the two they picked from Tennessee, and I was proud to be chosen,” Richardson says. “It made me feel like I must be doing a good job if they thought I was qualified enough to do that.”

Shifting gears

Richardson left Greyhound after 23 years, but he didn’t stop driving. With industry contacts he built over years, Richardson established his own company and started driving independently. His first major contract was with University of Memphis Athletics, carrying teams, including John Calipari’s basketball squad, to games across the country. But his real breakthrough was a contract with the National Defense University in Washington, D.C. At least once a month, military officers and foreign officials studying at the National War College, the Dwight D. Eisenhower School for National Security and Resource Strategy, and the College of International Security Affairs would take a trip across the country. “They would give me their schedule a year in advance, and I would meet them at the naval base in San Diego, Boeing in Seattle, the U.S. Central Command in Tampa or somewhere else and drive them around while they were there,” Richardson says. “I worked with over 1,000 military officers from 100 different countries. It’s really kind of humbling to me.” On those trips, Richardson had the chance to connect with future world leaders, like current Israel Defense Minister Benny Gantz, and he even brushed shoulders with President George H.W. Bush at his library in College Station, Texas. But he also enjoyed simply getting to know people who had grown up in different circumstances than his own. “Some of the men from former Eastern Bloc countries would be very stoic when we met, and I would consider them my challenge for that year,” Richardson says. “I would learn all their

Harry Richardson is shown with a scrapbook of letters and articles written during his time driving for the United States National Defense College. PHOTO CONTRIBUTED BY JOEY MEREDITH

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names and where they were from, and after a couple of months we would hug whenever they got off the plane somewhere.” Richardson retired after another 23 years of driving privately, but not before the National Defense University could honor his years of service with an honorary degree. Looking back, it is still one of the most surreal experiences of his life. “They would have a graduation ceremony every year, and that year the president of the university had a diploma and a plaque for me,” Richardson says. “I remember looking at the crowd and seeing King Abdullah from Jordan clapping for me. All I could think was, ‘Wow, all of this for a bus driver.’”

The road home

While Richardson spent most of his life in Memphis, Troy has always been his first home. It’s where he spent the first five years of his life on his grandfather’s farm and where his family has tended to the Richardson Farm for over 125 years. When he retired six years ago, he knew it was time to return. “My dad moved to Memphis for work right after World War II. But I always felt like it was my destiny to come back here and help take care of the place,” he says. Even in retirement, Richardson hasn’t been able to give up the road entirely. He still drives part time for Southern Coaches, getting behind the wheel to take groups from Troy University and local high schools where they need to go. He especially enjoys driving Youth Tour students to Montgomery to learn more about their state government. “I look out for them like they’re mine, and I try to encourage them to do well in their studies,” he says. “I can still remember how to greet people in seven different languages, so I encourage all the kids to take a second language. The world is so small, and people from other countries really appreciate it when you make that kind of effort.” Even after his decades on the road and millions of miles in the rearview mirror, Richardson still takes pride in his work. As far as he’s concerned, there are many road trips to come and more stories to hear. “It’s a joy for me to do this,” he says. “For one, I know I’m good at it. But I also enjoy meeting different people. You never really quit learning about other people, different countries or different parts of this country. America is a beautiful place, and there’s so much to see.” n Harry Richardson shows a one-of-a-kind hand-made gift of bus art he was given by a visiting Amir with the Pakistani Army. PHOTO CONTRIBUTED BY JOEY MEREDITH


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| Alabama Snapshots |

Young hunters

Eight-year-old Nathan went on his first hunt with his PawPaw, Phillip Watkins, last year and got these squirrels and one raccoon. SUBMITTED by April Redd, Coker.

Kason Tinker, age 11, killed this first bear in Idaho while hunting with his grandfather, Darrell Clark. SUBMITTED BY Darrell Clark, Clanton.

My son David taking his daughter, Addison, on a deer hunt (along with the gear, the backpack has a coloring book and crayons in it.) SUBMITTED BY Donna Gaubatz, Elberta.

Blake’s first deer at the age of 6. SUBMITTED by Charles Labriola, Wetumpka.

Cade’s first dove during a dove hunt in 2019 - he was so excited! SUBMITTED by Dewanna Jones, Moulton.

Grayson Everett and Klaire Carden, 2020 Dove Hunt. SUBMITTED by Lindsey Carden, Addison.

Submit “Mountain views” photos by November 30. Winning photos will run in the January issue. SUBMIT and WIN $10! Online: alabamaliving.coop Mail: Snapshots P.O. Box 244014 Montgomery, AL 36124

Alabama Living

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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 alabamaliving.coop and on our Facebook page. Alabama Living is not responsible for lost or damaged photos. Send a self-addressed stamped envelope to have photos returned.

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Spotlight | November 'Alabama Living' writers take top awards

Macon County wins 2020 Alabama Census Bowl

Two of Alabama Living’s writers have won awards at the national level. Hardy Jackson took first place in the Column or Series category in the Statewide Editors Association annual Willie Awards for his November 2019 column, “The Box.” The column is a remembrance of Jackson’s father’s box of memorabilia gathered during his service in World War II. Jackson also took a second place for a series of his columns, published each month as “Hardy Jackson’s Alabama,” in the national Cooperative Communicators Association awards. The association’s members include not only communicators for electric cooperatives, but also dairy, agriculture and other cooperaHardy Jackson tive businesses. Emmett Burnett, a freelance writer from Satsuma, won first place in the Entertaining Feature category of the Cooperative Communicators Association contest for his article, “Big boss bass or big fish tale?” published in August 2019. The story recounts the tale of Leroy Brown, a legendary largemouth bass that has his own statue in Eufaula. Emmett Burnett You can read both winning articles again on our website at alabamaliving.coop/articles/the-box/ and alabamaliving.coop/articles/big-boss-bass-or-big-fish-tale/

Sports fans – and Alabama has more than a few of those – love a good March Madness-style contest. To help increase participation in the 2020 Census, state officials created the Alabama Census Bowl competition, with tens of thousands of dollars up for grabs for schools. Starting Sept. 2, 32 Alabama counties with low self-response Census rates began competing in a bracket-styled challenge, divided into east and west. Only the counties reaching the biggest increase in self-response rates advanced to the next week. Macon County claimed the state championship and was the east bracket winner with the biggest increase in Census self-response over the entire contest. The county just east of Montgomery won $65,000 in grants that will benefit its school systems. The west bracket winner, Sumter County, won $45,000 for its school systems. The Final Four runners-up, winning $30,000 each, were Choctaw and Tallapoosa counties. The Elite Eight runners-up, winning $20,000 each, were Washington, Baldwin, Pike and Randolph counties.

Our Facebook followers love Brenda Gantt! We were proud to feature Covington EC member Brenda Gantt in our September issue, and Facebook fans loved it! Our story on Alabama Living’s Facebook page garnered more than 8,500 “likes” and more than 500 comments. Be sure to follow her Facebook and Instagram pages, both titled “Cooking with Brenda Gantt.”

Three new members for Alabama Academy of Honor selected The Alabama Academy of Honor has chosen Jo Bonner, Maj. Gen. J. Gary Cooper and Bryan Stevenson as the new class for 2020. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the academy’s annual induction ceremony has been postponed until 2021. Bonner represented Alabama’s 1st Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives for five terms, and served as Vice Chancellor for Economic Development at the University of Alabama System from 2013 to 2018. He is currently chief of staff to Gov. Kay Ivey. Cooper is a decorated Vietnam veteran and the first Black officer in the Marine Corps to lead an infantry company into combat. He was elected to the Alabama House of Representatives in 1974 and later served as commissioner of the Alabama Department of Human Resources. Stevenson, a widely acclaimed public interest lawyer, is the founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative, a human rights organization in Montgomery. He led the creation of the Legacy Museum and the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, which opened in 2018. Established in 1965, the Academy bestows honor and recognition upon living Alabamians for their outstanding accomplishments and service to the state and the nation. For more, visit alabamaacademyofhonor.org

Get in the Christmas spirit with events at Russell Lands On Friday, Nov. 27 – known as Black Friday – Santa will arrive by carriage around 10 a.m. at Russell Crossroads, 19 Russell Farms Road in Alexander City. Also that day, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., start your holiday shopping at the Holiday Bazaar on the Town Green. 10  NOVEMBER 2020

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Artisans and patrons from all over will enjoy this display of handmade goods. Artisans feature jewelry, soaps, paintings, pottery, woodwork, furniture and more. For more information, visit RussellLandsOnLakeMartin.com


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November | Spotlight

Find the hidden dingbat!

Whereville, AL

Did we make you hungry last month as you hunted for that lone piece of candy corn? Due to a fire at our printers, some magazines were delayed getting to you, so we extended the deadline for submissions. Thanks to all our readers who guessed correctly that the candy corn was in the “O” in October at the bottom of Page 18. Baldwin EMC member Arina Ellard, age 13, was inspired to look up historic events in Alabama on Oct. 18: “After doing some research I found out that Alabama experienced its worst earthquake in 1916! It was the Irondale earthquake. I am writing this in a different house now, I did write this all on paper before deciding to email it, because of Hurricane Sally. I assure you I am alright! Though my house isn’t. I wonder if the Irondale earthquake did more damage than Hurricane Sally. “I am so glad to see more kids in the magazine,” Arina writes, “and I am especially proud of Ian Shreve who had written that song! I also enjoyed reading that passage about Fort Morgan being haunted, for I had gone there when I was about 6 or 7!” Sarah Grace Tucker, age 14 of Waverly, and a member of Tallapoosa River EC, sent us some poetry: Cruising about, starting to freak out. The deadline’s tomorrow, By mail: Not much time to borrow. Find the Dingbat Flipping the pages Alabama Living Past Mayberry Memories. PO Box 244014 Feel like I’m in a bunch of races. Montgomery, AL 36124 Someone help, please! Gettin’ nearer... By email: I can feel it. dingbat@alabamaliving.com 15, 16, 17... Wait, this is it! Bottom left-hand corner on page 18!

Identify and place this Alabama landmark and you could win $25! Winner is chosen at random from all correct entries. Multiple entries from the same person will be disqualified. Send your answer by Nov. 9 with your name, address and the name of your rural electric cooperative. The winner and answer will be announced in the December issue. Submit by email: whereville@alabamaliving.coop, or by mail: Whereville, P.O. Box 244014, Montgomery, AL 36124. Contribute your own photo for an upcoming issue! Send a photo of an interesting or unusual landmark in Alabama, which must be accessible to the public. A reader whose photo is chosen will also win $25.

Our randomly drawn winner for October is James Tucker of Moulton. For November, we’ve hidden a Thanksgiving cornucopia, also known as a horn of plenty, in this issue. Good luck! The deadline is Nov. 6.

Take us along! We’ve enjoyed seeing photos from our readers on their travels with Alabama Living! Please send us a photo of you with a copy of the magazine on your travels to: mytravels@alabamaliving.coop. Please include your name, hometown and electric cooperative, and the location of your photo. We’ll draw a winner for the $25 prize each month.

Alabama Living

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October’s answer: This unusual structure is by the Arab Veterinary Hospital, on U.S. Highway 231 near the Walmart Super Center in Arab. (Because some issues of the October magazine were late arriving in mailboxes, we extended the deadline for guesses until Oct. 12. The photo was contributed by Ronnie Allen of Arab EC. The randomly drawn correct guess winner is Scott Beard of Arab EC.)

Morgan Haynes, a member of Cullman Electric Cooperative, took her magazine on a trip to Cade’s Cove, Tennessee.

Bill Capps, a member of Baldwin EMC, took his copy of Alabama Living on a trip to Kauai, Hawaii and visited the lighthouse there.

Tracy Simmons of Sylvania carried her copy on a trip to Clingman’s Dome in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Tennessee. She is a member of Sand Mountain Electric Cooperative.

Charlie and Claudia Wigglesworth caught up on their reading while at Orange Lake Resort in Kissimmee, Florida. The Daleville couple are members of Pea River Electric Cooperative. NOVEMBER 2020  11

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Portraits of Photographer Honor memorializes WWII veterans with images

By Lenore Vickrey


f the 16 million Americans who served in World War II, only about 300,000 are still alive today. Jeff Rease has made it his life’s goal to memorialize as many of them as possible. They are the men and women of The Greatest Generation, the ones who as teenagers stormed the beaches at Normandy on D-Day, who fought bravely at the Battle of the Bulge, who cared for the wounded aboard Navy ships, and who lived to tell of the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Since April 2019, Rease has taken photographs of 103 veterans, mostly in Alabama and a few in other states, for his online project, Portraits of Honor. Since he began, seven of those have passed away, three in the past two months. “They all have a story,” says Rease, who works as a freelance photographer based in Birmingham. “I enjoy seeing their faces as they remember. Most remember about times back then better than the most recent days.” His subjects were 18 to 22 years old when they left high school or jobs in the coal mines, factories or farms and went to war. Some were even younger. They are now in their 90s and some are older than 100. One told Rease of how he joined at the age of 14, his

USMC (Ret.) Col. Carl Cooper was the first veteran Jeff Rease photographed for the Portraits of Honor project. Cooper, who grew up in rural Chilton County, enlisted in 1942 and served 38 years in the USMC. Among his decorations is the Legion of Merit medal. After boot camp at Parris Island, training in North Carolina, Quantico, Virginia, and Camp Pendleton, California, he boarded a ship bound for Guadalcanal. He fought in the Battle of Okinawa, and after that, his unit moved to Guam to prepare for an invasion of Japan, until the dropping of two atomic bombs and the Japanese surrender ended the war. Col. Cooper was again called to active duty during the Korean War, serving in artillery and infantry, and during the Vietnam War, working mostly in training and recruiting in Washington, D.C. and California. He had a career later in education and coaching, and working with FEMA. He lives in suburban Birmingham where in March 2020 he celebrated his 100th birthday and was featured on local TV news programs still mowing his yard and tending his garden. 12  NOVEMBER 2020

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Photographer Jeff Rease and PFC Hilman Prestridge.

US Army Amphibious Forces PFC Hilman Prestridge of Clay County was one of the first soldiers to land at Omaha Beach at Normandy on D-Day in 1944 as part of the First Infantry Division. As soon as the front landing door on the Higgins boat was dropped, heavy German machine gun fire began raking his buddies as they stepped off into the water. Many died right in front of the boat, so the rest began jumping over the sides instead. “We had these life preserver things called a Mae West around our waist,” he told Jerry C. Smith of Discover St. Clair, in 2018. “They were supposed to float up under our armpits when you filled them with air, but because we were so loaded down with so much stuff, they couldn’t do that and just hung around our waists. Lots of men died with their feet sticking out of the water because all that ammo and grenades and backpacks kept them from floating upright.” Prestridge, 19, survived and his unit stayed in France until Europe had been liberated. After the war, Prestridge came home, married, and worked at Dewberry Foundry and the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and Blind in Talladega. He now lives at the VA Home in Pell City.

6-foot, 200-pound frame convincing recruiters he was older than he was. When his mother realized he was gone, she wrote a letter to the president and he was sent home from Europe. Within a few weeks, he’d joined the Navy, then the Merchant Marine, and ended up having a long military career. Rease’s project began when he learned about a then-99-year-old veteran living close to him in the Birmingham suburbs, USMC (Ret.) Col. Carl Cooper. After Rease posted photos of Cooper on his Facebook page, wearing his Marine uniform and all his medals, a friend saw it and asked him if he could do a similar portrait of his father-in-law in Daphne. Rease was happy to do so, and one portrait led to another. He contacted veterans homes in Alabama and the Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola, compiling a list of surviving veterans. “Everyone was very helpful,” he says. When he contacts the veterans, most have been eager to be part of Rease’s project. He travels to their homes, sets up a simple backdrop and lighting, chats with them and their families and puts them at ease. Some still proudly wear their uniforms and hold photos of their younger selves. Others wear suits or casual clothing. Rease puts his iPhone on a stand and records as he asks the veterans to talk about their service. “They have some amazing stories,” he says. “Just about all are eager to talk. When some say theirs was not a glamorous role, I tell them they all contributed to winning the war.” Some memories are more emotional than others, such as the veteran who talked about liberating a concentration camp. A B-17 pilot told of parachuting out of his plane after being shot down over France, pulling his ripcord at 3,000 feet with a jolt so strong it knocked his combat boots off, and then being rescued by farmers and being hidden from the Germans for eight weeks. Still another is one of the last surviving “Band of Brothers” and told Rease his dramatic story of parachuting into German-occupied France on D-Day, June 6, 1944, with his company, Easy Company. Rease has a familial connection with the military, as his father was an Army Airborne paratrooper in the Korean War, and his brother and his son both served in the Marines. A great-uncle died in WWII serving in the Coast Guard when his destroyer escort was hit by a German submarine. “Getting to meet these veterans and talk to them, and really Alabama Living

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Navy Electrician 1st Class Thomas Moore will be 100 on New Year’s Eve. Originally from Moody, and then Odenville, Alabama, Moore now lives in Andalusia to be closer to one of his children. He served in the Navy and the “Secret Blue Collar War,” in which the Navy used floating dry docks to repair battle damaged ships at sea, rather than waiting for the ships to be towed to Hawaii or California for repair. U.S. Army Nurse Beatrice Muse Price was born in Bessemer in 1924 and grew up on a farm in Greensboro, where she learned nursing skills while caring for her father, who’d been injured in World War I. She graduated from nursing school in 1944 and became an Army nurse in 1945, three days after turning 21. While working at a hospital in Fort Devens, Massachusetts, she cared for Gen. George Patton, and later at Lockbourne Army Air Base in Columbus, Ohio, she was assigned to the Tuskegee Airmen, the first black pilots to serve in the U.S. military. After the war ended, she continued her nursing career at the VA Medical Center in Birmingham and started a health and wellness center at her church. In 2012, U.S. Rep. Terri Sewell presented Price with the Congressional Gold Medal. Read more about her life at discoverstclair.com/rememberingveterans/a-life-of-firsts/ NOVEMBER 2020  13

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Army Medic Sgt. Ray Lambert grew up in the Cane Creek area of rural Chilton County near Clanton. He dropped out of high school to cut timber, then joined the Army as a medic in 1940, his only medical training as an assistant to the Chilton County veterinarian. He saw action in North Africa and Sicily, winning the Silver Star for bravery. As a 24-year-old, he was sent to England to lead a team of medics, and was among the thousands who landed at Normandy on June 6, 1944. He was wounded in his arm and leg, but kept on pushing forward, helping his men, until the ramp of a Higgins boat dropped on his back, crushing his spine in two places. He recovered in a hospital in England, alongside his brother, Bill. The highly decorated veteran now lives in North Carolina and has returned to Normandy several times, most recently in 2019 at the age of 98 for the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landing. The town bolted a plaque to the concrete slab where his unit sheltered the wounded, calling it “Ray’s Rock.” Lambert tells his story in his memoir, Every Man a Hero: A Memoir of D-Day, the First Wave at Omaha Beach and a World at War, co-authored with Jim DeFelice. Watch an interview with him at www.youtube.com/watch?v=KeiiUwKGnmY

becoming their friends, it makes it all more real to me,” he says, “especially when you hear it directly from their mouths. I have a greater respect for the sacrifices they made.” Rease continues to travel the state and out of state to photograph veterans, working within the restrictions imposed by COVID-19. “Those who are in retirement homes I can’t go to,” he says. He gives every veteran a large copy of his photograph and the video of his interview. He is exploring the idea of publishing a book of the portraits, and until then, his website remains a tribute all can see at PortraitsofHonor.us. The site also has links to video interviews on Rease’s YouTube channel. If you know of a WWII veteran you would like Rease to photograph, you can reach him through the contact page on his website. Dr. Donald E. Hayhurst landed on Omaha Beach with a U.S. Army tank recovery unit about 10 days after the initial landing and invasion. He received five battle service stars for his participation in combat including at Normandy, the Battle of the Bulge and the Rhineland, and the French Legion of Honor for his heroic participation in the liberation of France. During his service in WWII, Hayhurst’s rank was platoon sergeant but by war’s end he’d been commissioned a 1st lieutenant. He also served in the Korean War. Hayhurst became a professor at Auburn University, helping create the Department of Political Science, and was mayor of Auburn for four years. Under his leadership, he obtained a $600,000 federal grant for urban renewal used to improve the streets of downtown Auburn. A marker for this project is at Toomer’s Corner. In November 2018, Hayhurst and a former student flew to France and toured the five landing sites for Allied forces. (Information courtesy of writer Martha Poole Simmons in the Alabama Gazette.) He now lives in Millbrook, Alabama.

U.S. Army Lt. Don Salls, age 101, is the oldest living University of Alabama football player, helping the Tide win the national championship in 1942 before joining the Army after graduation. Stationed in Europe for 60 days, he was shot in the hand in field combat, and after being hospitalized in England, was diagnosed with a broken back. “They said, ‘The war is over for you,’” he told Jeff Rease in a video interview. “Thank you, Lord!” Salls earned a master’s degree in physical education from Alabama, a doctorate in education from New York University, and then became head football coach at Jacksonville State University from 1946-1964, winning three bowl games and seven conference titles. In 1995 he wrote a book, How to Live and Love to be 100. He now lives at the Veterans Home in Bay Minette. 14  NOVEMBER 2020

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Alabama Living

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Alabama co-ops mobilize to respond to Hurricane Sally By Allison Law


n the late summer, electric utility employees keep a close and wary eye on the tropics. Tropical cyclone activity generally kicks into high gear in late August, and 2020 was no exception. Hurricane Laura, a deadly and destructive category 4 storm, pummeled southwestern Louisiana and southeastern Texas when it made landfall Aug. 27. More than 1 million people lost power. Alabama sent more than 175 men from 14 co-ops to help restore electricity to the Beauregard Electric Cooperative in DeRidder, Louisiana. Several co-ops were still working there when Hurricane Sally formed in the Gulf of Mexico, and as it strengthened, Alabama’s co-op crews returned home, unsure of its path. On the 16-year anniversary of Hurricane Ivan’s landfall in the same location, Hurricane Sally came ashore as a category 2 storm near Gulf Shores on Sept. 16. While the gusts from the storm – with sustained winds of 105 mph – were destructive, Sally’s slow movement brought several hours of widespread and catastrophic rainfall that caused major flooding in many parts of southwest Alabama. As the storm moved on, there were more than 100,000 outages to cooperative members statewide, and Baldwin EMC, with more than 80,000 meters in Baldwin and Monroe counties, bore the brunt of the damage. The co-op had about 2,000 broken poles, 1,200 broken crossarms, more than 4,000 spans of downed wire and more than 4,000 trees on lines. More than 78,000 meters were without power. After a flyover of the affected areas, Gov. Kay Ivey was quoted by Alabama News Center as saying, “We knew that Hurricane Sally had the potential to be a devastating storm, but y’all, it’s really bad.” Baldwin EMC CEO Karen Moore had first-hand experience with Hurricanes Ivan and Katrina, but Sally was different for her co-op. “This was certainly the most devastating storm Baldwin EMC has ever had to hit our electrical system,” she says. Her team knew they would need help, and safety specialists from Alabama Rural Electric Association (AREA) immediately got to work on the phones, coordinating mutual aid among sister cooperatives. With such weather events, co-ops in a storm’s path have to be mindful that they, too, may suffer damage, so they must

wait to make sure their line crews aren’t needed at home before they’re promised to another utility. But within 72 hours following the storm, Baldwin EMC received 1,365 line workers, and more came in the following days. “It’s a sight to behold to see convoys of trucks arriving at our corporate headquarters, knowing they left their families to come in our time of need.” Baldwin received help from sister co-ops in Alabama and 11 other states. Alabama co-ops sending help were Central Alabama, Cherokee, Covington, Cullman, Clarke-Washington, Dixie, Joe Wheeler, Marshall-DeKalb, Pea River, Pioneer, Southern Pine, Tallapoosa River and Wiregrass. Of course, Baldwin’s own employees never stopped working, though some of them had damage at their own homes. “Watching these employees show up for work in spite of their own personal loss is an extreme example of service before self,” Moore says. Other co-ops, including Southern Pine and Clarke-Washington, also suffered damage to their systems and needed help from sister co-ops. As these co-ops restored power to their members, the crews helping them, as well as some of their own crews, were then able to travel to Baldwin to help. In the era of social media – with the ability to quickly dash off a complaint after a few days without power – Baldwin’s members were amazingly positive. “The fact that our members were communicating with us, offering words of encouragement and prayers, made us feel like they were very understanding of the challenge we had,” Moore says. Co-ops who sent help were monitoring Baldwin’s social media channels, and they recognized that the Baldwin members were lifting the employees up when they needed it the most. “We had a lot of factors working against us, but they don’t compare to the resiliency of what was working for us,” Moore says. Editor’s note: As this issue was going to press, Alabama’s co-ops were once again helping another state in need. About 75 men from 10 coops were headed to DEMCO in southeast Louisiana to restore power to the areas hit hard by Hurricane Delta.

Baldwin EMC’s Kent Enfinger works in the flooded Gulf Park substation on Sept. 18. After the storm, 17 of Baldwin EMC’s 22 substations did not have power. PHOTO BY HAL YEAGER/GOVERNOR’S OFFICE

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Alabama Living

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| Gardens | Pink muhly

Ornamental grasses can add texture, style to landscapes G

rass isn’t always greener on the other side of the fence. It may be pink, blue, purple, gold or ivory. It may be feathery, spikey or strappy. It may be as high as an elephant’s eye or low as a turtle’s shell. And it can look stunning all year long with little more than an occasional trim. No, I’m not referring to the turfgrasses that carpet our yards, but to the many low-maintenance, highly functional ornamental grasses that can, even in winter, add glamour and style to landscapes of all sizes and styles. The term “ornamental grasses” actually refers to a variety of species from several plant families (true grasses, sedges, reeds and cattails among them), all of which have grass-like leaves and tend to be hardy, drought-tolerant and require little grooming. Though these plants share many attractive similarities, what makes ornamental grasses so attractive in the landscape is their diversity. Depending on the species, ornamental grasses may have weeping to upright, towering to ground-hugging and mounding to clumping growth habits. Their slender leaf blades may be feathery, spiney or lance-like in shape, and exhibit an array of solid or variegated colors in shades of green, pink, purple, red, yellow, gold, silver, taupe and more. Katie Jackson is a freelance writer and editor based in Opelika, Alabama. Contact her at katielamarjackson@gmail.com.

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Many of these plants produce flowers or seed heads that add extra interest to the landscape, and many change colors with each season or create striking silhouettes in winter. In addition to their visual allure, ornamental grasses also provide sensory appeal as they move, rustle and whisper in a breeze. Because of this diversity, there’s likely an ornamental grass suited to every garden niche. They can be used as stand-alone accent and focal plants, mixed with other plants in garden beds or to create a meadow, mass planted on hard-to-mow areas, used to form borders and privacy or wind screens and grown indoors or out in containers. As wonderful as ornamental grasses are, however, they should be chosen with care. Some may grow quite large, require specific growing conditions and may be invasive. In fact, a number of known invasive varieties are still available at plant centers, so don’t buy until you’ve done your research. Start by browsing through catalogs and guidebooks to identify varieties best suited to your growing conditions and design goals. Then get expert advice from your local Cooperative Extension office, Master Gardener association, botanical garden, native plant or wildflower organizations about which ones are truly good choices. Alabama is home to some gorgeous native options such as muhly, bluestem and prairie grasses, not to mention switchgrass and broomsedge. These choices provide exceptional habitat for wildlife and pollinators, too!

Ornamental grasses can be planted in fall (before a hard freeze) or spring. Water all newly planted grasses well and mulch fall plantings to protect their roots from low winter temperatures. Once established, most ornamental grasses need only an annual pruning (preferably in late winter or early spring so they can grace the winter landscape), possibly dividing every 3-4 years and a light application of fertilizer in spring and late summer. Check recommendations for your chosen varieties to get specific planting and care instructions, then revel in the knowledge that the grass on your side of the fence may not be green, but it may well make your neighbors green with envy.

NOVEMBER TIPS • Plant or transplant most trees and shrubs. • Water newly installed plants as needed. • Plant spring-blooming bulbs, strawberries, salad greens and coolseason annuals. • Prepare tools, equipment and irrigation systems for winter. • Use fallen leaves as mulch or in compost heaps. • Water houseplants less. • Keep birdfeeders and baths full and clean. • Fertilize cool-season turfgrasses and check lawns for weeds and pests. • Clean dead or diseased plants and trash from garden beds, orchards and landscape areas. • Store lawn and garden chemicals safely.


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Alabama Living

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| Alabama People |

Kyes Stevens

Providing help and hope for people and animals in need If Kyes Stevens sees anyone or anything in need, she’s going to stop and help. It’s why she’s served as a volunteer firefighter for the community around her hometown of Waverly, Alabama. It’s why she rescues, and often adopts, homeless animals — more than 150 at last count. It’s also why she is an advocate for people whose voices are rarely heard. Stevens is director of the Alabama Prison Arts + Education Project, a nationally recognized program she founded in 2003 to provide educational opportunities to people incarcerated in Alabama’s prisons. The program sprang from Stevens’ first experiences teaching poetry and creative writing classes at Talladega Federal Prison and Julia Tutwiler Prison for Women which opened her eyes to the power of — and the basic human need for — learning, creativity and self-expression. In the years since its creation, APAEP has taught hundreds of classes in the arts, humanities and sciences to more than 5,000 incarcerated students in prisons across the state. – Katie Jackson

How did you, with a master’s degree in women’s history and a master’s of fine arts in poetry from Sarah Lawrence College in New York, end up working in Alabama’s prisons? After I finished at Sarah Lawrence and came home, I was looking for a job. I loved teaching, but I didn’t want to teach in higher education, so when a friend told me about a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship to teach poetry, I was excited. The fact that it was to teach poetry in a Talladega Federal Prison didn’t bother me. I knew there was a long history of imprisoned writers around the world using art and poetry to communicate from inside a system that silences you. Call it naivety or whatever, but I thought, “OK, people want to write poems. Great!” What did you first find inside the prison that made you want to help? And what have you learned through all these years? I found this beautiful engagement with learning. My students would say “I’ve always wanted to learn how to do that” or “I’ve always wanted to know why that is.” The motivation, the root of it, is always “I have something to say.” In these 19 years, I’ve learned that there is an absolute human longing to learn and create. It’s how we express ourselves. And if you grow up without those opportunities, which many people inside prisons did, you are being told you aren’t important, and you shouldn’t invest in hope or dreams or possibilities. We need to provide those opportunities for everyone. The APAEP works to provide learning and hope, but how does it, or any program like it, do that successfully? Effective programming, whether in the prison or in any community education or arts program, is about creating a space where someone can say “I’m going to take this risk and be vulnerable.” It’s about taking the right or wrong out of it and offering them a chance to learn, explore and be curious.


You’ve rescued and fostered many animals, and quite a few — mostly cats but also three dogs and 35 chickens — are permanent members of your family. Tell us about them. Many of the animals we have now are from the Island of Misfit Toys. They are rescues, adoptees and foster-fails that just needed a chance. Many, like our double front-leg amputee Roo Baby Roo, have special needs and are a ton of work, but it’s worth it because I believe we should truly value every single life, even when it’s hard and complicated to do so. As effective as APAEP has been, what more can be done to improve lives across the state? We need to have conversations. We need to build better systems for our state, things like education, access to broadband service and health care. We need to invest in people and help them, even if they aren’t like us. And not just people in prison but vets returning from combat, homeless people, children, anyone in need.

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Alabama Living

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| Worth the drive |

Two states plus two ’cues equal one winning combo Story and photos by Jennifer Kornegay


t most Alabama bartown Fairhope. becue joints, meat “The response to the food of the porcine pertruck showed that Fairhope suasion is king. But at Texwas hungry for some realarBama BBQ in Fairhope, ly good barbecue,” Parmer beef also has a strong claim says. He was correct again; to the throne. It’s an evenly right before the COVID-19 matched rivalry that stems shutdowns, the restaurant was up to selling 400 naturally from owner and pounds of barbecue a day. pitmaster Bradley Parmer’s Parmer stressed that “rebackground and inspired ally good barbecue” begins the restaurant’s mashup with really good products. name. “Getting high-quality meat Parmer cut his teeth is key,” he said. His pork is on Deep South ‘cue while from Compart Duroc, and growing up in west Georgia he gets beef from Creek(where pork is also king). stone Farms, both in the He ended up in Austin, Both TexarBama’s smoked turkey and beef brisket are moist and full of flavor. Midwest. Other crucial inTexas, working in architec- Sides like creamy Texican corn salad and traditional tater salad round out the tray. ture and building. There, gredients in TexarBama’s surrounded by some of the country’s most lauded beef brisket, he recipe for success are the right materials and the right technique learned the ways of Texas ‘cue. – in this case, a massive smoker fed by huge stacks of white and red Today, TexarBama combines the two. But what has grown into oak logs. “In Texas, they use post oak, but here, red and white oak a popular and routinely crowded eatery (in a place with plenty of are plentiful,” he says. “Oak burns hot and clean and adds some nice good eating options) started as a hobby. Parmer moved to Fairhope vanilla notes to its smoke.” in 2015 to be closer to his parents, who’d relocated to the coastal Hovering around 200 degrees, this smoke continually bathes the city. “I wanted to be close to my folks and to have a simpler life,” he meat in a process that can’t be rushed. Beef brisket slowly cooks for says. “I was getting a little burnt out on the crowds and busyness 13 hours, and pork butts, about 12 hours. And the smoke serves of Austin.” He was doing carpentry work on construction projects dual purposes: It’s the cooking method but also provides the majority of the flavor. “We use minimal seasoning,” Parmer says. “On down at Alabama’s beaches and started playing around with barbecue at his home on the weekends, using a smoker hand-built from the beef, it’s just salt and pepper.” old propane tanks. There are several different barbecue sauces available at TexarBama, including a version of Alabama white sauce, and while they’re Soon, a neighbor got involved, and word of the duo’s tender, succulent ‘cue spread like the meat-scented smoke wafting on the wind. all delicious, they’re truly not needed. Parmer is partial to the brisket, but customers seem to be pretty split, opting for pork and beef Other neighbors started dropping by, begging for a bite. Then, people from outside the neighborhood wanted in on the eating action. options in equal measure. While these two proteins are enjoying Parmer decided to make things more official. “We started hosting a a joint reign, there’s a less common contender also vying for the backyard barbecue the first Saturday of the month,” he says. They crown: smoked turkey. “It’s so moist, it couldn’t even think about being dry,” Parmer says. That’s no hollow boast; the thin slices of breast took donations to help offset their costs, and six months in, they are so tender and deeply flavored, you could be fooled into thinking were drawing throngs of more than 100 people. “I thought, well, I might be able to make some real money with this,” Parmer says. TexarBama BBQ TexarBama BBQ became a business in early 2018 but started as 212 ½ Fairhope Avenue a mobile operation, serving out of a food truck/trailer in Fairhope’s Fairhope, Alabama 36532 warehouse district. In just a few months, Parmer’s initial hunch was 251-270-7250 proven right; lines for TexarBama’s food wrapped around the block, Hours: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday and Parmer was selling 200 pounds of meat every day. He knew Fairhope texarbama.com then that the city would support a stationary spot, so in June 2018,  TexarBama opened in its current building on the edge of down22  NOVEMBER 2020

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it was altogether a bird of different feather. Most folks flock to barbecue joints for meat, but Te x a r B a m a’s other offerings should not be TexarBama owner and underestimat- pitmaster Bradley Parmer ed. Sides like turned his barbecue hobby rich and gooey into a thriving business. smoked mac ‘n cheese and silky collard greens threaten to upstage the main attractions. And selections like pulled-pork nachos (only available on the weekends); brisket, pulled pork and smoked, shredded chicken tacos; and a variety of tangy margaritas bring a bit of Tex-Mex flair, as does the creamy, sweetheat Texican corn salad (think cheesy, spicy Mexican street corn served conveniently off the cob) with its punch of pungent fresh cilantro. With a vast menu (there are burgers, salads and sandwiches in addition to the ‘cue), its blend of barbecue styles, plus some Alabama comfort-food favorites alongside Lone Star state standards, TexarBama BBQ has earned a loyal following, and Parmer finds the repeat customers rewarding. “We’ve got a lot of regulars,” he says, “and this community has been very supportive. It’s fun to know that people really like what we’re doing.”


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Not the Last Dance

That original TexarBama BBQ food truck is still getting use; you’ll see it now parked on the restaurant’s patio, and when restaurants were slowly re-opening after COVID-19 shutdowns, it served as a walk-up window to keep diners ordering and eating outside for increased safety. Note its exterior: It’s reclaimed wood from Texas, and according to Parmer, some of the planks were floorboards at dancehalls in their former lives. Alabama Living

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Understanding arthritis pain in pets – and managing it


ust like us, as our pets age, they slow down. A common problem in older pets is arthritis. The word means inflammation of the joint. Some of us call it Degenerative Joint Disease (DJD). Arthritis can affect one or many joints of the body. When we hear arthritis, we tend to think of the knees and hips, but there are over 100 joints in the spine alone, and they could be affected as well! Arthritis primarily affects the joints, but the trouble spreads out to the nerves and the muscles associated with it. When we treat arthritis, we frequently forget about the associated nerve and muscle tissues. From human experience, we know that sometimes a muscle spasm hurts more than the affected joint itself. To understand this disease and its various presentations, the following symptoms in dogs can be helpful: Early: Most of the time, this stage goes undiagnosed. There will be slight changes in mobility, very mild, and an almost non-noticeable delay in getting up from a sitting posture. It is best to start some intervention at this stage. Moderate: Owners start to notice that their pets are slowing down, and a little extra effort in getting up and sometimes sitting Goutam Mukherjee, DVM, MS, Ph.D. (Dr. G) has been a veterinarian for more than 30 years. He works at his home as a holistic veterinarian and is a member of North Alabama Electric Cooperative. Send pet-related questions to drg.vet@gmail.com.

Thanksgiving Across 1 National day of gratitude, first observed by the Pilgrims in 1621 7 Cook with dry heat 8 Thanksgiving pie 10 Baseball stat. abbr. 11 ____ beans, vegetable staple at Thanksgiving 13 Event announcer (abbr.) 15 Visit 16 The original reason for Thanksgiving 19 Drink holder 21 Thanksgiving dressing 24 Dried fruit 26 Gather 28 ‘’There, it’s done!’’ (French word) 29 What Brenda Gantt was holding on our September cover 30 Man

down. Movement may be better or worse after rest or play. Cold days may be worse. Severe: Anyone can notice this stage. The pet is visibly stiff gaited almost all the time. There is marked muscle loss. This stage may also be associated with some loss of nerve functions. For cats, diagnosis is difficult as they are good at hiding their symptoms. Watch to see if they are avoiding jumping up on high places. It is said that over 60% of cats have some degree of arthritis after the age of 10. There are many treatment options for arthritis, and it can get really confusing to decide on which way to go. The exact nature of the treatment depends on the severity of the disease. I think as the disease progresses, all pets will need some support from pharmaceutical products. Our goal is to minimize and be judicious in their use. We tend to use the “whatever necessary” approach when the pain is severe before tapering down to the minimum effective dose. Our biggest ammunition against arthritis is client education. We teach clients the different ways pain is originated, transmitted and perceived by the brain. Then we discuss how each class of drugs helps with each of the aspects. We will address these details in the next article. There are many choices. There is a tremendous amount of research going on to find effective alternatives for opioids in human medicine; I am sure our pets will benefit from the outcomes, too.


by Myles Mellor

25 Thanksgiving dinner topping 26 City transport 27 College email address ending Answers on Page 37

Down 1 Traditional Thanksgiving bird 2 Country band named for their home 3 Hobby shop buy 4 Informal acknowledgement of debt 5 Heat in a microwave oven 6 Thanksgiving usually ____ families (brings them together) 8 Apple ___ dessert 9 Food choice list 12 Numbered road, abbr. 14 ___berry sauce 15 Meat filler at Thanksgiving dinner 17 Type of potatoes served at Thanksgiving dinners 18 Heat control equipment 20 Circle ratio 22 Dinner ____: thanksgiving dinner go-with 23 Bird that’s a symbol of peace 24  NOVEMBER 2020

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Avoiding fraud this holiday season Navigating the busiest shopping season of the year, while also protecting yourself from theft, is no simple task. Fraudsters and scammers consider the holidays a very lucrative time of year to steal from you. Here are three things you can do to protect yourself from potential fraud:

Gift card scams

When purchasing a physical gift card from a retail store, always check the packaging. Fraudsters will tamper with it to obtain the PIN, then wait for the card to be activated. Before you even have time to wrap it, the fraudster has drained the card balance leaving the recipient a piece of plastic and a headache at the register. According to the National Retail Federation, more than 50% of Americans will purchase a gift card this upcoming holiday season. If fraudsters can compromise even 1% of these cards, they rob American consumers of over $300 million.

Only do business with merchants and retailers you know and trust.

When buying from a website for the first time, check the site for customer service phone numbers. Place a call to the business and attempt to talk to a representative. Each month 1.4 million fictitious sites are created to snare online consumers. Fraudsters create fake websites to closely resemble legitimate retailers and then offer merchandise at deep discounts to attract buyers looking for a deal. You may be surprised to find that the so-called “customer service department” is not even staffed.

Be careful attempting to purchase goods or services online through popular community marketplaces.

Before buying from an online marketplace, do your homework. If the seller asks you to pay using a peer-to-peer cash transfer service, such as Venmo, be on high alert. These services are convenient but not meant to pay for goods or services from people you do not know. These payments are almost instant and, in many cases, impossible to recover from scammers. Read the terms and conditions of any payment service before using it to purchase items. Attempt to meet up with the seller at a neutral public place. Many cities have designated locations, such as police departments or civic centers, that are considered safe places to meet a stranger. Remember, be vigilant and on high alert while shopping, and happy holidays from Alabama Rural Electric Credit Union! Learn how you will be protected from fraud at Alabama Rural Electric Credit Union, a division of Alabama ONE, at www.arecu.net/fraudalerts

Jackie Davidson Payments and Digital Fraud Risk Manager Alabama ONE


New benefit verification letters


e are excited to announce the release of a new, standardized Benefit Verification letter.   People receiving Social Security or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits can obtain their letter by using their personal my Social Security account. You can use the letter as proof of income for loans, housing assistance, mortgage, and other verification purposes. Please create your personal my Social Security account to access your new Benefit Verification letter online in a safe, quick, and convenient way without needing to contact us. People not receiving benefits can use their account to get proof that they do not receive benefits, or proof that benefits are pending, in the same standardized letter. Individual representative payees can also use the new my Social Security Representative Payee Portal to access the new Benefit Verification letter online for themselves or their beneficiaries. You can access your Benefit Verification letters at ssa.gov/ myaccount. If you don’t want to use your personal my Social Security account, you can call our National 800 Number, 800772-1213 to speak with a representative or to use the Interactive Voice Response system. You can also contact your local office. Kylle’ McKinney, SSA Public Affairs Specialist, can be reached by email at kylle.mckinney@ssa.gov.

Alabama Living

AL STATE NOV20.indd 25

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NOVEMBER 2020  25

10/14/20 1:20 PM

| Outdoors |

Check state’s game laws before deer season


labama deer hunters should possession doesn’t have to report check the regulations before anything.” hunting this year. The state The state manages more than made some changes to game laws 700,000 acres of wildlife manageincluding creating two new deer ment areas for public hunting. hunting zones. Sportsmen can also hunt national Zone D centers around Bankwildlife refuges, other federal lands head National Forest northwest of and other public properties. Good Birmingham. It includes parts of habitat conditions and a good Lawrence, Winston, Cullman and mast crop should mean abundant, Franklin counties. Zone E includes healthy deer across much of Alatwo separated tracts in extreme bama. eastern Alabama. One includes “The quality of the deer depends parts of Calhoun and Cleburne on what they’ve been eating and counties. The other sits in Barbour they’ve had plenty of groceries this and Russell counties. year,” Cook says. “Some wildlife Deer typically rut earlier in management areas that typicalthese two new zones than in the ly have the highest deer harvests rest of the state. Therefore, people each year include Oakmulgee and can begin hunting in these zones Barbour. Sam Murphy is also one about two weeks sooner than othof the better ones. It’s an area that er parts of Alabama. Season dates produces a lot of deer and some and regulations on public hunting pretty good ones too. In the southproperties may differ from estabern half of the state, Geneva State lished state dates and regulations A whitetail buck stands at alert. Deer hunting is the most Forest and Lowndes are two of the popular type of hunting in Alabama. The state created two new so always check first before hunt- deer hunting zones for this season. better places to hunt.” PHOTO BY JOHN N. FELSHER ing anywhere. People might also find good deer “Last season, our state deer harvest was up 14 percent from hunting in Black Warrior, Blue Spring, David K. Nelson, Perdido the previous year based on Game Check numbers,” says Chris and Upper Delta WMAs. Sportsmen can also apply to hunt variCook, the Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division ous Special Opportunity areas. For details, see outdooralabama. Deer Program coordinator. “I don’t know how much of that can com/hunting/special-opportunity-areas. be attributed to people just getting more used to using Game “Some really good deer are taken off those Special Opportunity Check or the change where they could use bait. I’m sure it was a Areas as well as deer for the freezer,” Cook says. “I’m more familcombination of both.” iar with Cedar Creek and Portland Landing areas. Those areas are The state also made a change to deer possession. Anyone who covered up with deer.” bags a deer or a turkey must report that kill through Game Check In any property, get out early and often to scout. Go where deer within 48 hours. To report game, many sportsmen use the app already want to go. On public properties, pick several hunting available at outdooralabama.com. Frequently, a hunter bags a spots. One person’s favorite place might also be another person’s deer and drops it off at a processor. When that animal changes favorite place. To avoid the crowds on public lands, hunt in the hands, it must include written documentation of the transfer. afternoon or during the week. Sportsmen can also apply for a public dog hunting opportunity “When a hunter kills a deer, that hunter must still report the on Geneva State Forest near Florala. Sportsmen do not need to deer to Game Check and receive a confirmation number,” Cook bring their own dogs. Dog handlers will release their dogs in the says. “When the processor takes possession of that deer, that perarea. Each hunter selected for the hunt will be assigned a stand son has to record the hunter’s name and the confirmation number where that person can wait for deer. Watch outdooralabama.com associated with that deer to prove that the deer has been reported for details. in Game Check as required. For anybody to take possession of Sportsmen who bag a deer this season might want to let the a deer or turkey that he or she didn’t kill, that person must have experts check it for chronic wasting disease, or CWD. So far, the that information from the person who killed it, but the person in debilitating disease similar to mad cow disease has NOT been confirmed in Alabama, but deer in Tennessee and Mississippi have tested positive for it. Hunters can bring deer to CWD testing John N. Felsher lives in Semmes, Ala. stations across the state. Contact him through Facebook. For more information on deer hunting in Alabama, see outdooralabama.com/seasons-and-bag-limits/deer-season. 26  NOVEMBER 2020

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Tu We Th Fr Sa Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su Mo

17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30


Tu We Th Fr Sa Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su Mo Tu We Th

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


1:06 - 3:06 1:54 - 3:54 2:42 - 4:42 3:30 - 5:30 4:18 - 6:18 5:06 - 7:06 5:54 - 7:54 6:42 - 8:42 7:30 - 9:30 8:18 - 10:18 9:06 - 11:06 9:54 - 11:54 10:18 - 12:18 10:42 - 12:42 A.M.

11:30 - 1:30 NA 1:06 - 3:06 1:54 - 3:54 2:42 - 4:42 3:30 - 5:30 4:18 - 6:18 5:06 - 7:06 5:54 - 7:54 6:42 - 8:42 7:30 - 9:30 8:18 - 10:18 9:06 - 11:06 10:42 - 12:42 11:30 - 1:30 NA 1:06 - 3:06 1:54 - 3:54 2:42 - 4:42 3:30 - 5:30 4:18 - 6:18 5:06 - 7:06 5:54 - 7:54 6:42 - 8:42 7:30 - 9:30 8:18 - 10:18 9:06 - 11:06 9:54 - 11:54 10:06 - 12:06 10:42 - 12:42 11:30 - 1:30



1:30 - 3:30 2:18 - 4:18 3:06 - 5:06 3:54 - 5:54 4:42 - 6:42 5:30 - 7:30 6:18 - 8:18 7:06 - 9:06 7:54 - 9:54 8:42 - 10:42 9:30 - 11:30 10:18 - 12:18 10:42 - 12:42 11:06 - 1:06 FULL MOON PM

11:54 - 1:54 12:42 - 2:42 1:30 - 3:30 2:18 - 4:18 3:06 - 5:06 3:54 - 5:54 4:42 - 6:42 5:30 - 7:30 6:18 - 8:18 7:06 - 9:06 7:54 - 9:54 8:42 - 10:42 9:30 - 11:30 11:06 - 1:06 NEW MOON 11:54 - 1:54 12:42 - 2:42 1:30 - 3:30 2:18 - 4:18 3:06 - 5:06 3:54 - 5:54 4:42 - 6:42 5:30 - 7:30 6:18 - 8:18 7:06 - 9:06 7:54 - 9:54 8:42 - 10:42 9:30 - 11:30 10:18 - 12:18 10:30 - 12:30 11:06 - 1:06 FULL MOON 11:54 - 1:54


7:33 - 9:03 8:21 - 9:51 9:09 - 10:39 9:57 - 11:27 10:45 - 12:15 11:33 - 1:03 NA 1:09 - 2:39 1:57 - 3:27 2:45 - 4:15 3:33 - 5:03 4:21 - 5:51 4:48 - 6:28 5:09 - 6:39 AM

5:57 - 7:27 6:45 - 8:15 7:33 - 9:03 8:21 - 9:51 9:09 - 10:39 9:57 - 11:27 10:45 - 12:15 11:33 - 1:03 NA 1:09 - 2:39 1:57 - 3:27 2:45 - 4:15 3:33 - 5:03 5:09 - 6:39 5:57 - 7:27 6:45 - 8:15 7:33 - 9:03 8:21 - 9:51 9:09 - 10:39 9:57 - 11:27 10:45 - 12:15 11:33 - 1:03 NA 1:09 - 2:39 1:57 - 3:27 2:45 - 4:15 3:33 - 5:03 4:21 - 5:51 4:33 - 6:03 5:09 - 6:39 5:57 - 7:27


7:57 - 9:27 8:45 - 10:15 9:33 - 11:03 10:21 - 11:51 11:09 - 12:39 11:57 - 1:27 12:45 - 2:15 1:33 - 3:03 2:21 - 3:51 3:09 - 4:39 3:57 - 5:27 4:45 - 6 ;15 5:11 - 6:41 5:33 - 7:03 PM

6:21 - 7:51 7:09 - 8:39 7:57 - 9:27 8:45 - 10:15 9:33 - 11:03 10:21 - 11:51 11:09 - 12:39 11:57 - 1:27 12:45 - 2:15 1:33 - 3:03 2:21 - 3:51 3:09 - 4:39 3:57 - 5:27 5:33 - 7:03 6:21 - 7:51 7:09 - 8:39 7:57 - 9:27 8:45 - 10:15 9:33 - 11:03 10:21 - 11:51 11:09 - 12:39 11:57 - 1:27 12:45 - 2:15 1:33 - 3:03 2:21 - 3:51 3:09 - 4:39 3:57 - 5:27 4:45 - 6 ;15 4:57 - 6:27 5:33 - 7:03 6:21 - 7:51

The Moon Clock and resulting Moon Times were developed 36 years ago by Doug Hannon, one of America’s most trusted wildlife experts and a tireless inventor. The Moon Clock is produced by DataSport, Inc. of Atlanta, GA (www.moontimes.com), a company specializing in wildlife activity time prediction. Note FULL MOON is listed on November 30. It was incorrectly listed as a NEW MOON in the October issue.

Alabama Living

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NOVEMBER 2020  27

10/14/20 1:20 PM

| Consumer Wise |

How to breathe easy about your home’s air quality By Pat Keegan and Brad Thiessen


ealing air leaks is one of the best ways to make your home more energy efficient, and there are steps you can take to ensure your home has an adequate amount of healthy, fresh

air. The average home loses about half its air volume every hour, so it can be sealed considerably (often at a low cost) and still have more than enough healthy air. Pollutants are the main cause of poor indoor air quality, and the most dangerous pollutant is carbon monoxide (CO). It can come from furnaces, water heaters or stoves that burn natural gas, propane or wood. The problem usually occurs in devices that are old, in need of repair or installed or operated in a manner that prevents clear, unobstructed supply and exhaust of combustion air. Excessive moisture in the air can also be considered an indoor pollutant because mold and dust mites thrive when relative humidity is above 60%. One sign your home is sealed too tight is window condensation, which can happen if moist air doesn’t exit the home at an adequate rate. Pollutants can cause physical reactions such as coughing or sneezing, but carbon monoxide causes more severe reactions, such as headaches, dizziness, nausea, shortness of breath, confusion, blurred vision or loss of consciousness. So, what can you do to ensure healthy indoor air as you increase your home’s energy efficiency? The first strategy, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), is to eliminate or reduce the source of pollution. And the first pollutant to eliminate is carbon monoxide. If you have a combustion furnace, it should be inspected and serviced regularly by a professional. If you have any combustion appliances, it is critical that CO detecPatrick Keegan writes on consumer and cooperative affairs for the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, the Arlington, Va.-based service arm of the nation’s 900-plus consumer-owned, not-for-profit electric cooperatives. Write to energytips@collaborativeefficiency.com for more information.

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A furnace that been inspected by an HVAC professional and is properly vented can help you have a pollution-free home. SOURCE: ACTIVE STEVE, FLICKR USER

tors are installed and replaced every five to seven years. If you live in an area with radon, which you can determine by checking out EPA’s radon map, keep it out of your home because it is the second leading cause of lung cancer. Radon tests are not expensive, and your local health authorities can provide more information. If radon levels are too high, you’ll need to hire a professional to install a system that will divert radon gas to the outside of your home. Here are a few additional pollutant reduction measures to consider: • Never smoke tobacco inside. • Run the exhaust fans in bathrooms and your kitchen after use. • Store toxic cleaning and painting products outside. • Never idle a vehicle, even for a minute, in an attached garage. The second strategy is ventilation. Your home probably has more than enough natural ventilation from outside air leaking into the home. If you suspect this isn’t adequate, the best way to know for sure is to hire an energy auditor to do a blower door test. Many experts recommend sealing the home as tight as possible and using mechanical ventilation to ensure a consistent and adequate supply of outside air. The most energy efficient ventilation system is a heat recovery ventilator (HRV), which pulls in fresh air from outside and captures the heat from indoor air before it is exhausted to the outside. The third and final strategy is to clean the air. The easiest step is to simply change your furnace filter at least once every three months and keep your furnace supply and return air registers free of obstructions. If any rooms do not have an air return, keep the doors open. There are several home air cleaning systems available––some are effective, and some are not. The EPA offers a handy online guide: epa.gov/indoor-air-quality-iaq/air-cleaners-and-air-filters-home. We hope these suggestions will be helpful as you seal air leaks in your home and enjoy fresh, healthy indoor air. www.alabamaliving.coop

10/14/20 1:20 PM

2021 Statement of Ownership Publication: Alabama Living Publisher: Alabama Rural Electric Association Editor: Lenore Vickrey Owner: Alabama Rural Electric Cooperatives, 340 TechnaCenter Dr., Montgomery, AL 36117 Year Avg. Current (Oct. 2020) A. Total No. of Copies: 422,025 427,378 B. Paid and/or Requested Circulation: 1. Outside County 422,025 427,378 2. Inside county 0 0 3. Sales through Dealers, Carriers, etc. 0 0 4. Other Classes Mailed 0 0 C. Total Paid/or requested Circulation: 422,025 427,378 D. Free Distribution by Mail 4337 4,369 E. Free Distribution outside the mail 0 0 F. Total Free Distribution 0 0 G. Total Distribution: 422,025 427,378 H. Copies Not Distributed 4,337 4,369 I. Total 426,362 431,747 Percent paid and/or requested 100% 100% Alabama Living

AL STATE NOV20.indd 29

NOVEMBER 2020  29

10/14/20 1:20 PM

| Alabama Recipes |

Time to bake a



Photo by The Buttered Home

f the thought of making a homemade pie makes you a bit nervous, take it from a cook who knows how to bake a great pie: Don’t be. “I love scratch-made cooking,” says Brooke Burks, who writes The Buttered Home blog and is our partner for each month’s recipe pages. “That’s what I grew up doing. But I also work for a living. Making a pie crust can be a little anxiety-inducing, but with the ease of getting a store-bought crust, there’s no reason why you can’t experiment with making different kinds of pie at home.” Her apple pie recipe on these pages is an uncomplicated one, using either a homemade or purchased pie crust. “Lots of people don’t like doing pie because they feel it’s too complicated,” she says, “but this recipe for apple pie is as clean as it gets.” When she does decide to make a homemade crust, Brooke will make two to four and put them in the freezer. “If I get pears or apples when they’re in season, I’ll sometimes make hand pies (individual small pies that can be baked or fried) using the same crust. Or you can use (canned) pie filling. You can make them sweet or savory.” Brooke will be making this month’s apple pie recipe in a video for her YouTube Channel this month, and we’ll be sharing it with our readers on Facebook. For details on how to make a homemade pie crust, visit thebutteredhome.com/homemade-piecrust. — Lenore Vickrey 30  NOVEMBER 2020

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Homemade Apple Pie is a recipe that takes us right back to our childhood. Back when days were easy and folks made a pie to have for unexpected company. Easy and delicious, it can be Brooke Burks made with a homemade pie crust or a store-bought one. The result is the same: soul-warming, good food memories. Whether you need them or need to make them, this pie is for you! The pie crust recipe and many more can be found at TheButteredHome.com.

Homemade Apple Pie 1/2 3 1/2 1 1/4 6 1 2 1 1

cup sugar plus 1 teaspoon tablespoons plain flour cup brown sugar teaspoon ground cinnamon teaspoon nutmeg cups green apples, peeled and sliced tablespoon lemon juice pie crusts, one for bottom and one for top tablespoon butter, cold and cubed egg white

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a small bowl, mix brown sugar, 1/2 cup of white sugar, flour, cinnamon and nutmeg. Set aside. In a large bowl, mix peeled and sliced apples with lemon juice, taking care to coat each slice. Sprinkle with sugar and spice mixture and mix well to coat again. Line a deep dish pie pan with one crust. Pour apple mixture into pie crust. Dot apples with cubes of butter evenly. Place second crust on top and seal edges with bottom crust. Using a knife, cut 1- inch slits in the center of the top to vent. Beat egg whites until frothy. Using a brush, brush egg whites on top of crust. Sprinkle remaining 1 tablespoon white sugar evenly over the top. Taking a long strip of aluminum foil, tent edges of pie for first portion of cook time. Bake 25 minutes with edges tented. Remove pie from oven and remove foil. Place back in oven and cook another 20-25 minutes until pie is browned. Cool for 15 minutes, slice and serve. Enjoy!

Alabama Living

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NOVEMBER 2020  31

10/14/20 1:21 PM

Cream Cheese Caramel Choc-o Nutty Pie 1 9-inch cookie pie crust 2 8-ounce packages cream cheese 1 can sweetened condensed milk 1 can whipped cream 1 bottle caramel syrup 1 bottle chocolate syrup 1 chocolate bar ¼ cup whole pecans Place cream cheese in a microwavable mixing bowl and microwave about 3 minutes to soften. Take out and stir until soft, add condensed milk, stirring until well combined. Pour mixture into cookie crust and spread. Spread whipped cream around edge of pie. Pour chocolate and caramel syrups over the top of pie. Chop chocolate bar and crumble over syrups. Drop the pecans over the top and around the pie. Cool and set before serving. Julia Fleming Southern Pine EC



Cook of the Month Prize!

February: Chocolate | November 6 March: Jams, jellies, marmalades | December 4 April: Eggs | January 1

3 ways to submit: Online: alabamaliving.coop Email: recipes@alabamaliving.coop Mail: Recipes, P.O. Box 244014 Montgomery, AL 36124 Please send us your original recipes (developed or adapted by you or family members.) Cook of the Month winners will receive $50, and may win “Cook of the Month” once per calendar year.

AL STATE NOV20.indd 32

1 1 3 1 1 1 3 1 ¼

Almost Too Easy Layered Lemon Pie

9-inch pie shell, unbaked cup sugar tablespoons plain flour cup light corn syrup cup flaked coconut 8-ounce can crushed pineapple eggs, beaten teaspoon vanilla cup butter, melted

1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened ½ cup sugar 1 can lemon pie filling 1 8-ounce container Cool Whip, thawed 1 graham cracker crust

In a bowl, combine sugar and flour. Add corn syrup, coconut, pineapple, eggs and vanilla, mix well. Pour into pie shell and drizzle with butter. Bake at 350 degrees for 50-55 minutes or until knife inserted in middle comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Chill before cutting. Store in refrigerator.

Beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Beat in ½ of lemon pie filling. Fold in Cool Whip. Spoon into pie shell. Spread with remaining pie filling. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Linda Lee Cullman EC

Trudy F. Nelson Central Alabama EC RECIPE CLARIFICATION The Chicken and Dumplings recipe featured in our October issue should have included the following: Use enough water to cover chicken thighs and vegetables by 2-inches for cooking of the chicken. After de-boning the chicken, you may need to add up to an additional 2 cups of water or broth to cook the dumplings. Add as much liquid as needed to give dumplings enough room to simmer.

Themes and Deadlines:

32  NOVEMBER 2020

Coconut Pineapple Pie

Mail order form and payment to: Best of Alabama Living Cookbook P.O. Box 244014 Montgomery, AL 36124-4014 COOKBOOKS @ $19.95 EACH: (Shipping included)



Name: Address: City:



Phone Number:


10/14/20 1:21 PM

Mama’s Sweet Potato Pie 2 2 1 1 1/2

eggs cups sweet potatoes teaspoon nutmeg or cinnamon teaspoon pure vanilla cup milk

Bake sweet potatoes and let cool. Peel and cut up. Mash with fork or potato masher. Stir in all remaining ingredients and beat well. Pour into pie shell. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Take out and brush with melted butter over top, then sprinkle with nutmeg or cinnamon. Cinnamon works best. Christina Mechaw Joe Wheeler EMC

La Pastiera Dolce (Sweet Spaghetti Pie) 3/4 1 3 1/2 1/4 1 1/4

pound spaghetti noodles, uncooked 15-ounce container ricotta cheese eggs, slightly beaten cup sugar cup grated Parmesan cheese cup whole milk stick butter Cinnamon, for topping

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Break uncooked pasta into irregular-sized pieces. Cook pasta in boiling, salted water until al dente. Drain well and set aside. Put ricotta cheese in a large bowl and mix until smooth. Add slightly beaten eggs, sugar, Parmesan cheese and whole milk. Mix well. Add cooked spaghetti and toss until well coated with cheese mixture. Pour into a well-buttered 9x13-inch baking dish. Dot with slices of butter and sprinkle with cinnamon. Bake for 30-45 minutes or until puffy and golden brown. Remove from oven and set in a warm place for at least an hour before serving or it can be kept in the refrigerator covered with foil for serving at a later time. Cut in squares with a sharp, wet knife. Cook’s note: For a sweeter pie, sprinkle with confectioners' sugar before serving. This pie also makes a great lunch or snack and can be eaten either hot or cold. Janice Bracewell Covington EC

Yummy Pecan Pie

Apple Cranberry Pie

½ 3 1 1 3 1 1 1 1

1 pie crust

cup sugar tablespoons all-purpose flour cup light Karo syrup cup dark Karo syrup eggs, room temperature teaspoon white vinegar teaspoon vanilla cup pecans, chopped 9-inch pie crust, unbaked

Filling: ¾ cup sugar 2 tablespoons flour 1 teaspoon cinnamon ¼ teaspoon salt 5-6 cups apples, peeled and thinly sliced 1½ cups fresh or frozen cranberries

Mix first 7 ingredients. Stir in pecans. Pour into crust. Cover edges with aluminum foil. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes. Remove foil and bake until filling is puffed and golden, about 35 more minutes. Cool on wire rack.

Topping: 1 cup rolled oats 2/3 cup brown sugar 2/3 cup flour ½ cup butter

Linda Lee Cullman EC

Combine sugar, flour, cinnamon and salt in a medium bowl and mix well. Add apples and cranberries and mix. Put crust into a deep-dish pie pan. Spoon the apple and cranberry mixture into the crust. Combine all topping ingredients and mix with fork until crumbly. Sprinkle topping over filling. Bake at 425 degrees for 35-45 minutes. Cover crust edges with foil and bake 15 minutes. Uncover and allow to brown.

Coconut Pecan Pie 5 eggs, beaten well with mixer and set aside 2 cups sugar 1 stick butter or margarine, softened 1 14-ounce package Angel Flake coconut 1 cup buttermilk 1/2 cup chopped pecans 2 unbaked deep-dish pie crusts Using electric mix, cream butter and sugar. Add beaten eggs and mix well. Add buttermilk, coconut and pecans. Pour into unbaked pie shells. Bake in a preheated 325-degree oven for 35 minutes or until pie is golden brown on top. Makes 2 pies.

Adria Joachim South Alabama EC

“Good apple pies are a considerable part of our domestic happiness.” - Author Jane Austen

Suzy Shepherd Pioneer EC Alabama Living

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NOVEMBER 2020  33

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Come in, we're open! www.brundidgealabama.com from your home to your office ... for entertainment and enjoyment ...

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We have what you need!


10/15/20 2:38 PM



Fight the cold and high energy bills The winter months bring with them family holidays, football on TV and an annual visit from Saint Nick. But it can also bring along higher energy costs that come with warding off the colder temperatures and shifting from daylight saving to standard time in most states. The switch from daylight saving time means shorter days for the most part, meaning lights burn longer and the days get cooler as darkness falls earlier, keeping the electric meter running. Decorating for the holidays with lights and with inflatables that require electric air pumps can also raise electric bills during wintertime.

Here are some tips to keep your winter energy bills lower: 1. Adjust your thermostat — Set your thermostat as low as comfortable when you’re in the home. When you’re away or sleeping, turn it back 10-15 degrees to save energy. A smart programmable thermostat can make adjustments easy to do. If you have a heat pump, maintain a moderate setting or use a programmable thermostat expressly for heat pumps. 2. Dress for the weather — Turn down the thermostat a couple of notches and break out the comfy sweatshirt or sweater and wool socks when you’re at home. 3. Cover drafty windows — Attach a heavy-duty clear plastic sheet or clear plastic film to the inside of your window. Sealing the plastic tightly to the frame can help reduce air flow from the outside. Tight-fitting insulated drapes and other window treatments can also help. 4. Seal any leaks — Air leaks around pipes and other utility cut-throughs and from gaps around chimneys need to be sealed off. If you have a fireplace or wood stove, make sure the flue damper is closed when the chimney is not in use. Make sure to check the attic and basement for any leaks. 5. Service your system — Make sure to have your heating system serviced before use each winter. Remember to change your air filter every month to reduce strain on the system, which increases energy usage. 6. Upgrade holiday lights — Energy-efficient light bulbs cut energy costs year round. During the holidays, LED light strings make for bright and lovely decorations while also cutting energy costs. Look for Energy Star-certified decorative light strings for your home and Christmas tree. 7. Don’t forget the water — Turn down the temperature of your water heater to the warm setting (120 degrees). You might also consider a tankless water heater, which will save money in the long run. 8. Use your ceiling fans — When rotating counterclockwise, ceiling fans push air down to cool a room. But most ceiling fans have a reverse switch, so you can make the blades rotate clockwise for winter. Use a low speed to gently pull cool air up and move the warmer air near the ceiling down into the room. 9. Sunlight — Though the days are shorter during wintertime, natural heat from the sun during the day can warm your home significantly. Open your curtains on south-facing windows during the day and close them at night to keep in the heat. - Sources: energy.gov and prnewswire.com Alabama Living

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| Our Sources Say |

Sally heroes T

wo years ago, Hurricane Michael struck the northwest Florida coast near Panama City. The destruction was so complete I thought it would be months before basic electric, water or sewer services would be restored. I wondered if the area would ever be the same. However, I underestimated the determination and resolve of the people. The people in the communities affected moved quickly. Within days after Michael, the communities were energized, and destroyed houses were being removed. Others were being repaired. Businesses were reopening in the areas that had electric service. Our distribution members, West Florida Electric Cooperative and Gulf Coast Electric Cooperative, and hundreds of vegetation clearing personnel, electric linemen, and contractors restored the electric infrastructure in just a few very long weeks. PowerSouth employees, Cooperative Energy crews and contractors restored our transmission system in just nine days. Disasters and crises can tear communities apart, and Michael, a Category 5 hurricane, was a terrible disaster. But disasters and crises can also bring people together. Although two years later there is still much left to be done, it is remarkable for so many people to have worked together after Michael to rebuild their lives and their communities. On September 16, the Alabama and northwest Florida coast was struck by Hurricane Sally, another devastating storm. Like Michael, Sally didn’t start out very imposing. It just started out as a tropical disturbance over the Bahamas, became a tropical storm near south Florida without much fanfare and drifted into the Gulf of Mexico. It was predicted to weaken and go to Texas and then to Louisiana, but kept drifting and intensifying. It strengthened before making a hard turn to the north and coming ashore on the Alabama coast as a Category 2 hurricane. Sally was not as powerful or damaging as Michael. However, for those of you who have not experienced a hurricane personally, none are easy. We have dealt with Opal, Ivan, Rita, Erin, Dennis and other named storms over the past 25 years. None of them were easy. All of them caused devastating damage and disrupted lives. And so did Sally. Like Michael, communities affected by Sally started coming together quickly. The next day, neighbors were helping each other clear trees and repair damage. It was also heartening to see the

signs in communities welcoming and encouraging electric workers. Some people brought workers water and food to help with the restoration. Again, communities came together. PowerSouth members - Baldwin EMC, Escambia River Electric Cooperative and Southern Pine Electric Cooperative - had thousands of trees on lines and thousands of broken poles. Hundreds of miles of distribution lines were damaged and out of service. Other surrounding electric cooperatives also had significant damage. Gulf Power suffered similar damage in and around Pensacola. The efforts of our distribution systems and Gulf Power Company were outstanding. The confusion immediately after a hurricane is overwhelming. Communications are usually disrupted, and information is difficult to obtain. Roads are often blocked, and it is very difficult to access areas to define the damage. However, these utilities moved very quickly to assess the damage and start the restoration effort. PowerSouth personnel were on the road before the storm had completely moved out of Gulf Shores. By late afternoon more than half the damage had been assessed, and crews were assigned responsibilities to clear the lines of fallen trees and repair the damage. PowerSouth employees and contractors started early and worked late to get substations restored. By Friday at 7 p.m., just 65 hours after PowerSouth lost its first substation, service to all of our substations was restored. By noon Saturday, all of our transmission lines were returned to service. PowerSouth’s transmission system was damaged, but not as severely as by Michael. We had 191 miles of transmission lines and 31 distribution substations out of service by the time Sally cleared. Rebuilding from a hurricane takes a huge coordinated effort, only accomplished by planning, determination, hard work and people working together. Our people and the work they did were remarkable. It’s amazing what people can do when working together to triumph over crisis. I couldn’t be prouder of what PowerSouth people did to restore electric service to a devastated area so quickly. They went over and above the call of duty. Just a few months ago, I wrote about heroes working at PowerSouth. Our people again established that they are heroes. They proved it once more. I am proud to be on their team. I hope you have a good month.

Gary Smith is President and CEO of PowerSouth Energy Cooperative.

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Answers to puzzle on Page 24

Alabama Living

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| Hardy Jackson's Alabama |

Appreciating veterans, and anchovies

Illustration by Dennis Auth


eterans Day. I grew up among veterans. World War II, mostly. Though I had an uncle who served in World War I, the veterans who defeated Hitler and Tojo are the ones I remember. My Daddy was one. What I recall most was how little he talked about what he saw, did, and endured. I wanted to know. Wanted to compare his exploits to what I had seen in the movies or on TV. Daddy did not attend war movies and he resolutely avoided WWII documentaries on TV. Did not want to remember. But once his guard broke down. It was back in the early ‘50s. I was not yet in my teens. Daddy and I were on the way to the coast. For lunch we stopped at a little pizza place. I had never eaten pizza with my father, didn’t even know that he Harvey H. (Hardy) Jackson is Professor Emeritus of History at Jacksonville State University. He can be reached at hhjackson43@gmail.com

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knew what it was, much less liked it. We went right in and placed our order. Mine was pretty standard – cheese, sausage, etc. His was much the same until, in closing, with a flourish, he added “anchovies.” I didn’t know what they were. Then the meal arrived and I saw them, little brown fish with what looked like tiny hair sticking out. Gag. Daddy saw me looking. “Wanna try a slice?” Now I was a big boy. Recently my Daddy had introduced me to raw oysters. So, I figured that if my Daddy could eat an anchovy, I could eat an anchovy. So, I did. And while I was enjoying this new treat, he told me why he liked anchovies so much. World War II. Up in the front line. Lonely and scared, he wrote Mama that he missed her, missed two-year-old me and missed sardines. For some reason, he did not explain, the thought of sardines re-

minded him of home. Mama took the hint and with some of her precious ration stamps she bought a few tins, packed them up and shipped them to her husband who was in the process of bringing down the Third Reich. The day the delicacy arrived was the day that Daddy’s unit “liberated” a German supply depot. In it they discovered crates of anchovies, waiting to be sent to Hitler’s troops. From the way Daddy told it, he and his fellow warriors fell on the prize like vultures and ate until they could eat no more. Meanwhile, Daddy took Mama’s sardines, stuffed them in his pack, and wrote his wife thanking her for the treat. As far as she knew, he enjoyed them on arrival, not weeks later when the anchovies were gone. So, my Daddy and I shared a secret. And in the years to come, when we ate pizza, we shared anchovies. Thank you, veterans, for the country we love. And thank you for anchovies. www.alabamaliving.coop

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CALL FOR ENTRIES Alabama Rural Electric Association’s

11 Quilt Competition th

Our 2020 theme is: First responders

Mail, or E-mail form below for your entry package. Deadline to submit quilt square is January 29, 2021.

Name:_________________________________________________ Address:_______________________________________________ City, State Zip:___________________________________________ Mail to: Linda Partin AREA E-mail:_________________________________________________ 340 TechnaCenter Drive Montgomery, AL 36117 Phone:_________________________________________________ Cooperative:____________________________________________ or Phone: 334-215-2732 E-mail: lpartin@areapower.com (The electric cooperative name on front of this Alabama Living.)

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Profile for Alabama Living

November 2020 South Alabama  

November 2020 South Alabama