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April 2019

Carolina Country


Starting on page 14

Published by

Ode to a Lineman page 10

Test your energy saving know-how page 29 PERIODICAL

Vote for the best North Carolina has to offer, from food to travel —p   age 12 April covers.indd 1

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Volume 51, No. 4



Favorites 4 Viewpoints 6 More Power 29 Energy Sense 41 Carolina Compass 44 Carolina Gardens 46 Marketplace 47 Classifieds 48 Carolina Kitchen 50 Where is This? 50 Featured Photo


14 24 30


Charlotte & Raleigh

Get a taste of city life with these family-friendly weekend trips that won’t break the budget.

Well, Shut My Mouth! Vivián Joiner and Stephanie Tyson’s restaurant is good for the soul.


Sightseeing Around the State

From the mountains to the coast, these trips showcase the best of public art, literature, music and coastal living.

On the Cover Charlotte offers families endless opportunities to enjoy museums, food, shopping and other activities (like these Uptown fish fountains) found in the big city. Learn more about Charlotte and Raleigh beginning on page 14. Photo courtesy of CRVA/


Carolina’s Finest We’d like your help finding the best of the best in North Carolina, from barbecue restaurants to lakes, beaches and trails. See page 12 for details.

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Building a Brighter Energy Future, Together By Curtis Wynn


lectric cooperatives were To be successful, all three of these members an unprecedented level of founded on the promise of a will require the ongoing support and choice and control over their energy brighter future: the improved participation of co-op members. use, and allow us to use electricity in quality of life and new oppornew and exciting ways. This evolution From reducing peak energy loads tunities that electricity — along with and participating in energy efficiency of both technology and consumer a grass roots spirit of cooperation programs provided through your expectations is expected to continue — could bring to rural people and cooperatives, to employing smart at full force — and North Carolina’s communities. That same promise is thermostats and driving electric, you electric cooperatives are leading the extending even further today, here in national effort to leverage this change can play an integral role in building a North Carolina and across the nation, brighter energy future for all. through three core values: as our co-ops and Electric coopertheir members atives are unique work together businesses in to pursue new that when we energy solutions work together, we and embrace can accomplish innovation and great things. technology that will During my tenLow Beneficial Grid better meet our ure as NRECA Low Grid Beneficial needs and support president, I want Carbon Flexibility Electrification Carbon Electrification Flexibility our vitality. us to build on our As the recently elected board prescommonalities as cooperatives and ■■ Low Carbon. Creating a lowident of the National Rural Electric co-op members, and further integrate carbon emissions environment Cooperatives Association (NRECA), them with the changes taking place through sustainability and I will challenge all of our country’s in our industry. I want to raise awarecontinued investment in low- and cooperative family to fully examine ness and understanding about the zero-emissions resources. the way we view the future of our evolution we are experiencing, and ■■ Grid Flexibility. Integrating techindustry, asking ourselves: “Are we, help co-op members realize how they nology to make distribution grids as utilities and cooperatives, ready?” can be part of one of the most excitmore resilient, robust and flexible as well as: “How can we collectively ing times in our history. Most of all, I for an energy future that includes strengthen the cooperative netwant to better serve our members and consumers’ participation through work, and turn our challenges into continue to put them at the forefront demand response programs and even more opportunities for the of all we do. new energy resources distributed people, businesses and communiThank you for joining me on this across the grid. ties we serve?” mission. I am grateful for the opportuThe energy industry is changing nity to serve you in this new capacity, ■■ Beneficial Electrification. rapidly as the electric grid becomes and I look forward to all we will Improving efficiency of the overall more interconnected than ever continue to accomplish together. energy sector by electrifying before. One-way transmission and processes and devices formerly distribution of power has been powered by fossil fuels, and making Curtis Wynn is president and CEO for Roanoke Electric Cooperative in Aulander replaced by two-way communication the most of the many benefits and was recently elected president of the and smart devices that give co-op electricity has to offer. NRECA Board of Directors.

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Carolina County Adventures

Laura Wolff—Charlotte Knights

April is the time of year when we here at Carolina Country go all out to round up the best travel ideas in North Carolina. In this issue we’re heading to the big cities of Charlotte and Raleigh to see what they have to offer, as well as exploring some “trails” from around the state that you won’t need a hiking stick for. As you explore these destinations, rest assured you’re never far from an electric co-op. Thank you to North Carolina’s electric cooperatives for sponsoring this travel content, as well as to the travel advertisers throughout this issue. —Scott Gates, editor

More Leaves, Less Weeds I would like to add a helpful hint to the article “Great Gardens, Less Work” (March 2019, page 18). While hiking in Spain a few years ago, I noticed that rural vegetable gardens consistently used tree leaves for mulch. The leaves were piled up about 8 to 12 inches around all garden plants. The result? NO WEEDS all growing season! By the end of the season, the leaves have broken down into the soil, adding organic matter.  After pulling up old garden plants in the fall I quickly fill the beds with leaves again for overwintering to prevent any weeds from sprouting in the early spring. Great commonsense weed control. Why didn’t I think of that?!

Air Drying Advocate I was so happy to see someone else suggest not using a dryer (“International Efficiency,” March 2019, page 30). They not only use high rates of electricity, they tend to make clothes wear faster. I can see the purpose of homeowners’ associations, but I think they’re responsible for sparse use of clotheslines. We use the guest bathroom to drape assorted laundry on hangers, over doors. It looks like a convention for tired ghosts, but our sheets and towels are over 20 years old and still going strong! Try it for a month and see what effect it has on your light bill! Pat Batko, Cary

Cristy Giddens, submitted on

Published monthly by

3400 Sumner Blvd., Raleigh, NC 27616 919-875-3091 Warren Kessler Publications Director Scott Gates, CCC Editor Renee C. Gannon, CCC Senior Associate Editor Karen Olson House Contributing Editor Tara Verna Creative Director Erin Binkley Graphic Designer Tom Siebrasse Advertising Joseph P. Brannan Executive Vice President & CEO Nelle Hotchkiss Senior Vice President & COO North Carolina’s electric cooperatives provide reliable, safe and affordable electric service to 1 million homes and businesses. The 26 electric cooperatives are each member-owned, not-for-profit and overseen by a board of directors elected by the membership. Why Do We Send You Carolina Country Magazine? Your cooperative sends you Carolina Country as a convenient, economical way to share with its members information about services, director elections, meetings and management decisions. The magazine also carries legal notices that otherwise would be published in other media at greater cost. Your co-op’s board of directors authorizes a subscription to Carolina Country on behalf of the membership at a cost of less than $5 per year. Has your address changed? Carolina Country magazine is available monthly to members of North Carolina’s electric cooperatives. If you are a member of one of these cooperatives but do not receive Carolina Country, you may request a subscription by calling Member Services at the office of your cooperative. If your address has changed, please inform your cooperative. Subscriptions: Individual subscriptions, $12 per year. $20 outside U.S.A. Schools, libraries, $6. Carolina Country is available on digital cartridge as a courtesy of volunteer services at the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources, Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, Raleigh, N.C. 888-388-2460.

Marilyn Ashley Nelson, Lake Lure A member of Rutherford EMC

Time to Reconnect We received the March issue of Carolina Country yesterday so today at lunch I took the opportunity to read. The article by Leslie Boney, “Plugging in to Community” (page 4), was excellent. North Carolina definitely has a challenge to turn our state into the right direction. The labor force portion was staggering. Thank you for opening the door to a better future.

(ISSN 0008-6746) (USPS 832800)

Read monthly in more than 700,000 homes

Contact us Phone: 919-875-3091 Fax: 919-878-3970 Mail: 3400 Sumner Blvd. Raleigh, NC 27616 Web: Email:

Change of Address: Experiencing a power outage? Please contact your electric co-op directly to ensure prompt service. Visit to find yours online.

Advertising published in Carolina Country is accepted on the premise that the merchandise and services offered are accurately described and willingly sold to customers at the advertised price. The magazine, North Carolina Association of Electric Cooperatives, Inc., and the member cooperatives do not necessarily endorse the products or services advertised. Advertising that does not conform to these standards or that is deceptive or misleading is never knowingly accepted. Should you encounter advertising that does not comply with these standards, please inform Carolina Country at P.O. Box 27306, Raleigh, NC 27611. 919-875-3091. Carolina Country magazine is a member of American MainStreet Publications that collectively reach more than 27 million readers every month.

Periodicals postage paid at Raleigh, N.C., and additional mailing offices. Editorial offices: 3400 Sumner Blvd., Raleigh, N.C. 27616. Carolina Country® is a registered trademark of the North Carolina Association of Electric Cooperatives, Inc. POSTMASTER: Send all UAA to CFS. (See DMM 707.4.12.5); NON-POSTAL AND MILITARY FACILITIES: send address corrections to Carolina Country, P.O. Box 27306, Raleigh, NC 27611. All content © Carolina Country unless otherwise indicated.

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I t e


More Power

NC’s Wynn Elected to Lead National Board Curtis Wynn, president and CEO for Roanoke Electric Cooperative in Aulander, was elected president of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s (NRECA) Board of Directors at its annual meeting in March. During his twoyear term, Wynn will represent electric co-ops nationally on behalf of NRECA, the national service organization that represents the nation’s more than 900 not-for-profit, consumer-owned electric cooperatives (see “Building a Brighter Energy Future, Together” on page 4). Wynn is NRECA’s immediate past vice president and served as

secretary-treasurer prior to that. He has led Roanoke Electric since 1997 and has been active on a number of industry and community-related boards, including as past president, vice president and secretary-treasurer for the North Carolina Electric Membership Corporation.

Wynn holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration & Management Information Systems from Troy University in Alabama. Look for full coverage of NRECA’s 2019 annual meeting in the May issue of Carolina Country.

Bright Ideas Educational Grants Set Record in 2018 Last year, North Carolina’s 26 electric cooperatives awarded more than $675,000 in Bright Ideas grants to teachers for 602 innovative projects that will benefit 149,177 students statewide. This marks the largest amount of Bright Ideas funding ever awarded in one year by the state’s electric co-ops. Since the program began in 1994, the Bright Ideas Education Grant Program has provided necessary

funding to K–12 teachers across North Carolina to fund creative, hands-on classroom projects. “Bright Ideas education grants are one of the most important ways that electric co-ops support local teachers and students, and strengthen our communities,” said Jennifer Heiss, Bright Ideas coordinator for North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives. “The record-breaking amount awarded last year shows our cooperative leaders’

continued commitment to investing in our future leaders through a program that really makes a difference for students.” North Carolina’s electric cooperatives begin accepting applications for the 2019 Bright Ideas Education Grant Program in April. North Carolina K–12 teachers can learn more by visiting


“Break Out of the Box” Teacher: Leigh Ann Howard, Forest Hills Middle School (Wilson County) Participating students: 400 Students worked in groups to solve “escape room”-type mysteries with multiple clues, requiring critical thinking and team work. The grant funded these kits from Breakout EDU, an immersive learning platform that turns classrooms into academically focused escape rooms and facilitates critical thinking and team work.

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More Power

Chuck LIddy, The News & Observer

Remembering John Stackhouse NC Meter School Tackles Grid Tech That electric meter on the side of your home is a pretty sophisticated device, and they’re getting more so all the time. But whether it’s an older model with dials and a spinning disk, a version with a digital display or a newer meter capable of automatically sending electric use data to your electric co-op, it takes trained technical staff to keep them working properly. The NC Electric Meter School and Conference is one spot where that training occurs. 2019 marks the program’s 88th year, which is organized by NC State University around seven technical tracks for beginners on up to seasoned meter personnel. Attendees will have the opportunity to learn all aspects of metering, as well as basic substation equipment and operation, in a school environment. “The industry has progressed with today’s technology, and metering interfaces have become varied and often directly related to other grid technologies — over time the conference has evolved as well to stay current and proactive,” said conference steering committee member Jimmy Green, manager of Customer Services with Supply-based Brunswick Electric. “To have been around for nearly 90 years and still be growing is a feat, and speaks to the quality of the program.” The conference will be held June 23–27 in Myrtle Beach. Last year, nearly 600 attended, 90 of those being exhibitors, from 36 states as well as Canada, the Bahamas, Virgin Islands, Europe and Asia. For those wishing to attend, the deadline for an early bird registration discount (of $475 per person) is May 31. For more information

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The NC Jaycee Burn Center founder died at age 103 John Woods Stackhouse passed away February 17 at Wayne UNC Health Care. He was 103. In the 1970s, Stackhouse worked with electric co-ops and other organizations to create the NC Jaycee Burn Center at UNC Hospitals (see “Improving the World, One Patient at a Time,” February 2019, page 4). Stackhouse was born in South Carolina and started working summers at Carolina Power & Light when he was only 15; his first job was washing streetlights for five cents an hour. In the 1930s, he worked as a lineman for the company before heading into the Navy to serve in WWII. He later started his own construction businesses, contracting with electric companies to put up power lines, creating Stackhouse Incorporated. Burns were an unfortunate reality during Stackhouse’s long career in the power business. He recalls early on having a hard time finding adequate care for employees who suffered burns. “Back then, a seriously burned patient never returned to work or even to productivity for that matter,” he said. “Just to return them to the task of living was a continuous struggle.” In the 1970s, he set out to improve burn care and pledged $40,000 to do so, with the board of the Rural Electric Association voting to match it. Stackhouse lobbied other organizations, and many groups that had seen the effects of burns — such as firefighter and electrical organizations — joined the effort. The groundbreaking for the Burn Center was January 15, 1977, and Stackhouse’s vision came to fruition when the center officially opened on February 23, 1981. “Through Mr. Stackhouse’s vision, relentless efforts and monetary contributions, the NC Jaycee Burn Center was formed as a critically important department within the UNC Hospital,” said Dale Lambert, CEO of Randolph EMC and a member of the Burn Center Advisory Board. “North Carolinians are blessed to have such a world class facility in our state that has served thousands of burn victims over the years. We owe Mr. Stackhouse a great debt of gratitude for not only recognizing this need, but working to make it a reality.”

Watch a video of John Stackhouse discussing his history with the Burn Center.

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More Power

Ode to a Co-op Lineman Four County EMC

Tanaleigh Smith is the 12-yearold granddaughter of Michael Delacerda, lineman for Burgawbased Four County EMC. She submitted the following poem to the 2018–2019 National PTA Reflections Contest — with Michael Delacerda the theme “Heroes Around Me” — where it has placed first at her school, Charles P. Murray Middle School, as well as at the county level in New Hanover County. Her poem will next compete at the state level for a chance to compete at the national level. Brunswick Electric

The Work of a Lineman By Tanaleigh Smith

You get the call late at night, you have to lace your boots up tight. The wires are down, the people need lights. You kiss your family, you don’t feel like going, the rain is pouring and the wind is blowing. Long hours, hard work, and bad weather, you do it all. The job is not easy, but it was your call. Your boots are wet but still stand tall. You wanted to be a lineman and climb the tall poles, and making people happy is your main goal. It takes pride, integrity, and a whole lot of guts, and some may think that you’re quite nuts.

Thank a Lineman Lineworker Appreciation Day is April 8. More than 15,000 electric cooperative lineworkers serve on the front lines of our nation’s energy needs, performing intricate work in dangerous conditions to ensure we receive the safe, reliable power we depend on. On April 8, use the hashtag #ThankaLineman on social media to show your gratitude to North Carolina’s electric cooperative’s dedicated crews!

Linemen have a bond that is like no other. It’s made by the hazards and dangers you face together. You trust your pole buddy, you know he’ll be there, to give you a hand up high in the air. As you hook your boots to the pole in the sky, the wire is big and the voltage high. With God’s good grace, he won’t let you die. When all of the work is done, and the day is through, You go home to your families, and unlace the boots, proud of what you do.

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There’s nothing finer ... Nothing beats a Carolina morning —but there’s much more to love in our great state. Carolina Country is proud to introduce our first annual Carolina’s Finest Awards, showcasing the finest North Carolina has to offer. We need your help! We’re leaving it up to you, our readers, to pick the best of the best. Visit by June 30 and cast your votes in the categories below. Each voter will be entered into a drawing for one of three $100 gift cards.

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Entertainment Musician/Band



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(From or currently playing in NC)


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Cast your vote by June 30 for a chance to win $100! NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. To enter, complete online entry form at for a chance to win. All contact information will remain confidential. One entry per person, drawn by random; odds of receiving one (1) of the three $100 gift cards depend upon number of entries received. Entries must be completed online at by June 30, 2019. Random drawing will take place July 1, 2019.

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Take a family- (and budget-) friendly trip to Charlotte By Craig Distl

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U.S. National Whitewater Center

Romare Bearden Park

Charlotte built itself over time into North Carolina’s largest city with a “can do” attitude focused on commerce and growth. That same “can do” spirit has expanded to tourism in recent years. Now more than ever, the Queen City is a destination for families and couples. Here is a flexible itinerary for immersing yourself in North Carolina’s largest city without breaking the budget. Day 1: Go West, young man Barberstock—Charlotte Barberstock—Charlotte

Largely ignored for most of the 20th century, the area west of Charlotte in Mecklenburg County now proudly boasts two of the more popular tourist attractions in the state: the Billy Graham Library and the U.S. National Whitewater Center. The Billy Graham Library ( opened in 2007 just west of town along the Billy Graham Parkway. It offers a spiritual experience coupled with a historical look at “America’s pastor.” There is no charge for admission, which makes the library not only good for the soul, but also the pocketbook. The first thing people encounter at the Billy Graham Library is the house in which Billy Graham spent much of his youth. The two-story brick house was originally located on the family’s dairy farm four miles from the library and was moved, piece by piece, to the library grounds. After walking through the house, folks enter the library, built to resemble a huge dairy barn with a glass cross on the front. Guided tours start every few minutes and use a variety of exhibits and media to tell the story of the late evangelist who preached the gospel live, worldwide, to audiences

totaling nearly 215 million. The tour ends at the Graham Brothers Dairy Bar, a perfect place to grab lunch. Reasonably priced selections include family favorites and Mother Graham’s special recipe chicken salad, a real treat. Not far from the Graham Library in western Mecklenburg County is the U.S. National Whitewater Center ( This Taj Mahal of an outdoor playground was conceived on a napkin in a Charlotte bar and has been a huge hit since opening in 2006. The centerpiece of the 1,300-acre property is a man-made recirculating whitewater river. It has been used for training Olympic kayakers and canoers, and offers everyone the thrill of whitewater rafting in the flatlands of North Carolina. Rafting is one of many water- and land-based activities available at the Whitewater Center, including ziplining, mountain biking, hiking trails and flatwater paddling on the adjacent Catawba River. Activities can be purchased individually, or day passes start at $49 and cover most activities. A budget-friendly option is to pay the $6 parking fee and enjoy free trail access for hiking and biking, then scout out a sunny spot beside

the rapids to watch the excitement. There’s food service on site, and free live music is available during warmer months.

Day 2: State line fever

Due south of Charlotte’s glistening skyline is Carowinds (, the Queen City’s most identifiable tourism attraction dating to 1973. The state line separating North and South Carolina runs through the park and makes for great photo ops. It’s easy to spend a full day at Carowinds, which promotes itself among the world’s top five amusement parks in terms of roller coasters, with 14. That total includes the Fury 325 coaster that climbs to a height of 325 feet and delivers a 95-mile-perhour adrenaline rush as it races across the state line. New this year is Copperhead Strike, a close-to-the-ground coaster that strikes quickly, going from zero to 42 miles per hour in 2.5 seconds. Riders zoom through a series of fast, tight maneuvers, including five head-over-heels inversions, on this half-mile serpentine ride. Another option is Carolina Harbor Waterpark at Carowinds. When temperatures rise, cool down with 14 different activities, including water April 2019  | 15

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Laura Wolff—Charlotte Knights

Charlotte Knights at BB&T Ballpark

slides, wave pools, a surf club and a three-acre kids’ area. Waterpark admission is included in the price of tickets, which generally start around $40 and head upwards, depending on the day of the week and whether they are pre-purchased online or at the gate (the park is offering Pre-K Passes in 2019, with free admission for kids ages 3–5). Account for parking fees and food when budgeting for a day at the park. A budget-friendly option near Carowinds is the 1,132-acre McDowell Nature Preserve ( near the state line on the shores of Lake Wylie. The preserve is part of the Mecklenburg County parks system and has hiking trails, campgrounds, kayak rentals and guided paddling tours. The McDowell Nature Center is home of a variety of native animals, along with a certified butterfly garden and bird feeding stations, while Copperhead Island is a 20-acre section jutting into the lake with hiking trails, camping and fishing.

Day 3: Head down to Uptown

It doesn’t have to be complicated — or expensive — to visit the heart of the city, which locals call Uptown. Lynx Blue Line light rail service runs through the middle of Uptown on a north-south axis. Several rail stations north and south of town offer free parking, which makes it a breeze to leave the family truckster behind and buy round-trip light rail tickets ($4.40 adults, $2.20 kids) into the city. Once among the skyscrapers, choose between a cultural or a sports itinerary. Top cultural attractions include the Museum of the New South ( and Blumenthal Performing Arts Center ( Purchase a $20 ticket through the Levine Center for the Arts ( lca-pass) for 2-day admission to a triumvirate of museums: Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, Harvey Gantt Center for African American Arts + Culture and Mint Museum Uptown.

On the sporting side, fans of the NFL’s Carolina Panthers can tour Bank of America Stadium (panthers. com/stadium) most Wednesdays and Fridays year-round for $6 per adult and $4 per child. The NASCAR Hall of Fame ( offers an interesting experience by mixing the museum aspect of a hall of fame with the interactive aspect of NASCAR. For live sports, Charlotte’s triple-A minor league stadium, BB&T Ballpark (, was built so fans can watch the Charlotte Knights on a beautiful grass field framed by the Queen City skyline. This fan-friendly stadium not only offers one of the best settings in minor league baseball, it has led all of minor league baseball in attendance four of its five seasons since opening in 2014. Craig Distl is a Belmont-based freelance writer and proud native of North Carolina.


Lake Wylie at McDowell Nature Preserve

Speed Street

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3/11/19 12:17 PM


Family Fun in the

City of Oaks

A weekend in Raleigh offers something for everyone By Angela Perez Marbles Kids Museum

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North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences

Marble Kids Museum


State Farmers Market

3/11/19 11:20 AM

Father and Son Antiques

Morgan Street Food Hall

Sassool at Morgan Street Food Hall

Father and Son Antiques

As one of North Carolina’s fastest-growing cities, Raleigh is a cosmopolitan hub of creativity and innovation. Although nearly half a million people call it home, the “City of Oaks” offers warm hospitality and Southern charm. As Raleigh’s population has grown, its local food culture has evolved into a nationally celebrated dining scene. Take a long weekend to look around, and you’ll find endless family-friendly and fun things to do in the Tar Heel State’s capital, where historic meets hip. Day 1: Downtown diversions Marble Kids Museum North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences

Downtown Raleigh teems with impassioned artists and artisans, all occupying an easily walkable city center. Walk over to Big Ed’s Restaurant ( for breakfast in downtown’s City Market. Big Ed’s has been serving up old-school Southern cooking since the 1950s and remains popular with locals. Try the homemade grilled buttermilk biscuits with sausage gravy. Or head east a couple of blocks to lucettegrace (, a nationally acclaimed patisserie serving scrumptious creations almost too gorgeous to eat. Next, head over to Marbles Kids Museum ( for fun for the whole family. The sprawling Marbles campus includes hands-on exhibits, interactive programs and IMAX movies. Children can don costumes, go on a jungle safari, conduct trains, paint, sculpt and even board a submarine or pirate ship to explore the ocean. The museum features a cafe and a store offering educational games and toys. Admission is under $10 per adult, child or senior.

Well worth a visit is the downtown North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences ( The museum offers exhibits and programs for the whole family. One of the venue’s highlights is the daily “Meet the Animals” program, where you can come face-to-face with an alligator, an opossum or any number of native North Carolina animal species. General admission is free. Head over to Father and Son Antiques ( for a shopping break and some vintage treasure hunting. You’ll find everything from one-of-a-kind mid-century modern furniture to ’70s children’s toys to that same Smokey and the Bandit lunchbox you had when you were a kid. For lunch or dinner downtown, check out Morgan Street Food Hall (, a multi-vendor food hall featuring a wide variety of local eateries. Note that while the hall is similar to a food court in that it features shared seating surrounded by restaurants, there are no national chain restaurants here — the focus remains steadfastly local. Vendors offer Southern cooking, wood-fired pizza, empanadas, lobster rolls and more.

Day 2: Head outside

Start your day heading 2.5 miles southeast of downtown to the bustling State Farmers Market ( Here you’ll find farmers and artisans from across the state selling fresh produce, meats, seafood, NC wines, plants, bakery items, cheeses, fresh-cut flowers and much more. Be sure to bring a rolling cooler with you to keep your perishables fresh as you peruse the 75-acre market. Have breakfast at the adjacent State Farmers Market Restaurant. Ever popular with Raleighites, the restaurant features down-home Southern cooking made with fresh ingredients. Also not to be missed is the on-site NC Seafood Restaurant, specializing in hot, crispy, fresh Calabash-style seafood (don’t forget the hushpuppies and cole slaw). Make your way over to western Raleigh to catch some rays at the ever-popular Pullen Park ( raleighnc-pullen), nestled between downtown Raleigh and the NC State University campus. Established in 1887, Pullen Park is the fifth-oldest amusement park in the country and features an operating carousel built

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The Rodin Garden at the North Carolina Museum of Art

in 1911. The kids will love catching a ride on the miniature train that winds through the park. There are also kiddie boats and pedal boats for a jaunt around Lake Howell. Admission is free, although there is a small fee for rides. After an afternoon at the park, head back into downtown to the Warehouse District for decadent treats at the Videri Chocolate Factory (, located in the historic Raleigh Depot building. The chocolate counter features luscious “bean-to-bonbon” confections, and the coffee bar offers silky, rich chocolate-based drinks. Then, remember to cross the street to check out Boxcar Bar + Arcade ( The venue features hundreds of arcade-style games, including classic ’80s games, over a dozen pinball machines, and close to 200 console games. The budget-friendly bar features two-dozen American craft draft beers. Children are allowed but must be accompanied by an adult over 21.

Day 3: Further afield

We’re heading west of town today, but on your way stop in for breakfast at Boulted Bread (, an artisanal bakery and pastry shop nestled on the fringe of downtown. Their breads feature locally-sourced, heirloom ingredients, and in just five short years the place has become a Raleigh favorite. Now find some deals at the Raleigh Flea Market (, the state’s largest indoor/outdoor flea market where you can rummage through the old and new and check out local arts and crafts. The market is at the NC State Fairgrounds Videri Chocolate Factory

Boxcar Bar + Arcade

Boxcar Bar + Arcade

For dinner, cross the street back over to the Raleigh Depot building to Jose & Sons ( This bustling breezy restaurant offers a fusion of Southern soul food and Mexican classics. (Note: as of press time, Jose and Sons Chef Oscar Diaz is nominated as a James Beard Semi-Finalist for Best Chef in the Southeast).

(, so check its events calendar to see what’s happening during your visit — the fairgrounds host more than 500 events each year. Just a hop, skip, and a jump from the fairgrounds you’ll find the North Carolina Museum of Art and its Ann and Jim Goodnight Museum Park ( Here you’ll find families picnicking and walking dogs among stunning massive public art installations. Admission to the museum is free and features 12 galleries with works from around the world. On the weekends, the museum offers family-friendly “choose your own adventure” tours. Located about 25 miles southeast of Raleigh, the Daniel Dyers Action Sports Complex ( is not to be missed. The largest familyoriented, year-round skating and biking training facility in the world features an indoor skatepark and biking terrain. International athletes regularly visit to compete and show off their skills to the public. Angela Perez is a Raleigh-based food, travel and technical writer. She particularly enjoys documenting the ever-evolving foodways and food culture of the American South.

Still hungry?

For brunch, lunch or dinner, be sure to check out at least one of these Raleigh favorites: For innovative vegetarian eats, don’t miss downtown’s Fiction Kitchen ( A Raleigh staple for nearly 15 years, located on the edge of downtown, J. Betski’s ( features Central and Eastern European cuisine. J. Betski’s remains a favorite of many Raleigh chefs. One of Raleigh’s newest and most buzzed-about restaurants is Hummingbird ( This cozy restaurant exhibits the vision and finesse of owner Chef Coleen Speaks, who has carefully curated and lovingly presented every detail: the cuisine, the décor — even the music.

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3/11/19 11:21 AM

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2/15/19 12:34 PM 3/11/19 12:17 PM



Doctor urges seniors to carry medical alert device Seniors snap up new medical alert device that comes with no monthly bills People don’t always do what their doctor says, but when renowned emergency room physician, Dr. Philip B. Howren says every senior should have a medical alert device, you better listen up. “Seniors are just one fall away from being put in a nursing home,” Dr. Howren said. With a medical alert device, seniors are never alone. So it keeps them living independently in their own home. That’s why seniors and their family members are snapping up a sleek new medical alert device that comes with no monthly bills ever,” he said. Many seniors refuse to wear old style help buttons because they make them look old. But even worse, those medical alert

systems come with monthly bills. To solve these problems Universal Physicians, a U.S. company went to work to develop a new, modern, state-of-the-art medical alert device. It’s called “FastHelp™” and it instantly connects you to free unlimited nationwide help with no contracts, no deposits and no monthly bills ever. “This slick new little device is designed to look like the pagers doctors wear every day. Seniors love them, because it actually makes them look important, not old,” Dr. Howren said. FastHelp is expected to hit store shelves later this year. But special newspaper promotional giveaways are slated for seniors in select areas. ■

■ NO MONTHLY BILLS: “My wife had an old style help button that came with hefty bills every month and she was embarrassed to wear it because it made her look old,” said Frank McDonald, Canton, Ohio. Now, we both have FastHelp™, the sleek new medical alert device that our grandkids say makes us look ‘cool’ not old,” he said. With FastHelp, seniors never have to worry about being alone and the best part is there are no monthly bills ever.

Seniors born before 1956 get new medical alert device with no monthly bills ever It’s just what seniors have been waiting for; a sleek new medical alert device with no contracts, no deposits and no monthly bills that instantly connects you to free unlimited nationwide help with just the push of a button for a one-time $149 price tag that’s a real steal after today’s one hundred-fifty dollar instant rebate The phone lines are ringing off the hook. That’s because for seniors born before 1956, it’s a deal too good to pass up. Starting at precisely 8:30am this morning the Pre-Store Release begins for the World’s first-ever medical alert device that comes with the exclusive FastHelp™ One-Touch E 911 Button that instantly connects you to free u n li m ited nationw ide help with no contracts, no deposits and no monthly bills ever. “It’s not like old style monitored help buttons that make you talk to a call center and only work when you’re at home and come with hefty bills every month. FastHelp comes with state-of-theart cellular embedded

■ FLYING OUT THE DOOR: Trucks are being loaded with thousands of new medical alert devices called FastHelp. They are now being delivered to lucky seniors who call the National Rebate Center Hotline at 1-866-964-2952 EXT. HELP680 today. Everyone is calling to get FastHelp, the sleek new medical alert device because it instantly connects you to free unlimited nationwide help with no con(Continued on next page) tracts, no deposits and no monthly bills ever.

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technology. That means it works at home or anywhere, anytime cell service is available whether you’re out watering the garden, driving in a car, at church or even hundreds of miles away on a tour or at a casino. You are never alone. With just a single push of the O ne -Touch E But t on you get instantly connected to free unlimited help nationwide with no monthly bills ever,” said Jack Lawrence, Executive Director of Produc t Development for U.S. based Universa l Physicians. “ We’ve never seen anything like it. Consumers absolutely love the sleek new modern design a nd most of a ll, the instant rebate that practically pays for it and no monthly bills ever,” Lawrence said. FastHelp is the sleek new medical alert device with the rarest of combinations: a quality, hightech engineered device that’s also an extremely great value because there are no monthly bills ever. Better still, it comes with no contracts, no deposits and no monthly bills ever – which makes FastHelp a great choice for seniors, students and professionals because it connects to the vast available nationwide network of cellular towers for free. And here’s the best pa r t . A l l t ho s e who a l ready h ave a n old style monitored medical alert button can immediately eliminate those monthly bills, which is why Universal Physicians is widely advertising this announcement nationwide. “So if you’ve ever felt a medical alert device was too complicated or expensive, you’ll want to get FastHelp, the sleek new medical alert device with no monthly bills,” said Lawrence. T he me d ica l a ler t device slugfest was dominated by two main combatants who both offer old style monitored help buttons that require professional installation of a

CC04-wk.indd 23


home telephone land line, expensive base station equipment and a hefty bill every month. But now Universal Physicians, the U.S. based heavyweight, just delivered a knockout blow sending the top rated contenders to the mat with the unveiling of FastHelp. It’s the sleek new cel lu l a r emb e dded medical alert device that cuts out the middleman by instantly connecting you directly to highly trained 911 operators all across the U.S. There’s absolutely noth-

ing to hook-up or install. You don’t need a land line and you don’t need a cell phone. Everything is done for you. “FastHelp is the World’s first-ever medical alert device that makes you look important, not old. Old style monitored help buttons you wear around your neck are the equivalent of a horse and buggy,” Lawrence says. “It’s just outdated.” Nea rly 1 . 8 m i l l ion seniors fall every year and spend more than 12

hours lying on the floor helpless and all alone with no help. But seniors who fall and get immediate help a re nine times more likely to avoid getting sent to a nursing home and get to STAY living in their own home independently. Yet millions of seniors are still risking their safety by not having a medica l a ler t dev ice. That’s because seniors just can’t afford to pay the monthly bills that come with old style med-

ical alert devices. That’s why seniors born before 1956 are rushing to cash in the whopping $150 instant rebate before the 7 day deadline ends. So there’s no need to wait for FastHelp to hit store shelves later this year because seniors born before 1956 can get it now just by using the $150 instant rebate coupon printed in today’s newspaper before the 7-day deadline ends. If lines are busy keep trying, all calls will be answered. ■

HOW TO GET IT: IF BORN BEFORE 1956: Use the rebate coupon below and call this Toll-Free Hotline: 1-866-964-2952 EXT. HELP680

IF BORN AFTER 1956: You cannot use the rebate coupon below and must pay $299 Call: 1-866-964-2955 EXT. HELP680

THE BOTTOM LINE: You don’t need to shop around. We’ve done all the leg work, this deal is too good to pass up. FastHelp with the $150 instant rebate is a real steal at just $149 and shipping and there are no monthly bills ever.

PROS: It’s the World’s first ever medical alert device that comes with the exclusive FastHelp One-Touch E 911 Button that instantly connects you to free unlimited nationwide help with no contracts, no deposits and no monthly bills ever. It’s quickly becoming a top pick with consumers because it saves you a ton of money and instantly connects you to one of the largest cellular networks everywhere cell service is available for free making this deal irresistible. Plus it’s the only medical alert device that makes seniors look important, not old. CONS: Consumers can’t get FastHelp in stores until later this year. That’s why it’s so important for seniors born before 1956 to call the National Rebate Center Hotline within the next 7 days. For those who miss that deadline, the sleek little medical alert device will set you back over three hundred bucks. EXPIRES



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3/11/19 1:09 PM

Carolina People

“I never had the chance to cook what I grew up eating … Southern food.” Sweet Potatoes

Stephanie Tyson (left) and Vivián Joiner at their Winston-Salem restaurant.

Well, Shut My Mouth!

Vivián Joiner and Stephanie Tyson’s restaurant is good for the soul By Lori Grossman


n case you didn’t know, North Carolina happens to be the nation’s #1 producer of sweet potatoes. When Winston-Salem native Stephanie Tyson created a menu for the restaurant that she and co-owner Vivián Joiner opened in 2003, guess what ingredient kept popping up? Yep. Sweet potatoes. “I like sweet potatoes,” Stephanie says. “I wrote the menu, and, looking over it, I said, ‘That’s got a lot of sweet potatoes in it.’ So I said, ‘Oh, we’ll call [the restaurant] Sweet Potatoes!’ ” Later, they learned that the name was already trademarked. A painting of the women, which hangs in the restaurant, provided the inspiration for the new name. “On the painting, it says, ‘Mmm Sweet Potato …  Shut My Mouth,’ so we included [it] in our trademark: ‘Sweet Potatoes (well shut my mouth!!) a restaurant.’ ” The journey Neither Stephanie nor Vivián started out intending to open a restaurant. In fact, Stephanie studied at the East Carolina University Drama department and the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York. However, acting fame wasn’t in the cards. She met Vivián in Washington, D.C. With no obvious career path in mind, they decided to try the restaurant business.

Stephanie admits she wasn’t much of a cook to begin with — “For the most part, I burnt everything I cooked” — so she studied culinary arts at Baltimore International College. Vivián chose restaurant management. They hit the road to gain experience. “We traveled from one end of the country to the other and back — Virginia, South Carolina, Florida, Arizona and Maryland,” Stephanie remembers. She became familiar with Italian, Mediterranean and French cuisines. But something still wasn’t right. “I was just sitting in the kitchen one day and said, ‘It’s time to go home. I want to go home,’” Stephanie says. “I never had the chance to cook what I grew up eating … Southern food.” So the two women moved to Winston-Salem with the idea of opening a restaurant. They found the space they wanted on Trade Street in the hip new Arts District. It was rundown and needed a lot of work. And they had another problem — money. “We had a plan. We had the experience. But others had very little confidence in our ability,” Stephanie remembers. “No, the banks and the city loan people were having none of that. What they suggested … was that we open a hot dog or hamburger stand.” But with the help of WinstonSalem’s commissioner of cultural arts, Philip Hanes, they obtained loans

from the city and an organization spearheading the redevelopment of the downtown area. In January 2003, Sweet Potatoes opened for business. The food The restaurant’s menu, offering Southern and soul food spiced with Chef Stephanie’s special touches, drew crowds from the beginning. Since then, their food has gained regional and national media attention. “We were recognized for our Sweet Potato Cornbread as the must-have Thanksgiving pick for North Carolina [New York Times, 2014],” Vivián says. Jackee Harry praised their Sweet Potato Bread Pudding on the Food Network show, Guilty Pleasures. “We got calls from as far away as Texas and Los Angeles asking for our bread pudding!” Vivián remembers. When you study the menu, you’ll be surprised how many dishes use sweet potatoes — in biscuits, pancakes, cornbread, hash and even in the Ragin’ Cajun Turkey Burger’s bun. There’s also a build-your-own sweet potato, sweet potato fries ... they’re even in one of the cocktails. “It’s called ‘Porch Sitter.’ It’s our play on a mint julep,” Vivián explains. “Instead of using a basic simple syrup, when we make candied sweet potatoes, we take the syrup generated when baking them, add mint to that, and use that in our version of mint julep.” “You can go through a whole meal and not have anything with sweet potatoes in it,” Vivián adds. “I just don’t know why you’d want to.” Freelance writer Lori Grossman currently lives in Texas, but carries memories of North Carolina in her heart.

Watch scenes from the restaurant as Stephanie and Vivián share their story.

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Carolina Living

American Cruise Lines

Blount Small Ship Adventures

Cruising the Americas

On the open sea or a river, cruising offers a convenient getaway By Marilyn Jones

Although there was a time cruising was thought of as a honeymoon vacation, the convenience of seeing the world without traveling too far for a departure port and the all-inclusive price are making cruise travel a popular choice for travelers. Where would you like to vacation this year? What domestic or international destination is on your bucket list? “The Caribbean has been the number one destination for cruising, but that is shifting,” says Sandra Evans, owner of CruiseOne Travel Agency in Newark, Ohio. “Many people want to try something new.” She says the popularity of the Mexican Riviera and Alaska cruises, for example, have prompted Carnival Cruise Line and Norwegian Cruise Line to put their newest and largest ships in these ports. 

Generally speaking, cruises are all-inclusive regarding lodging, meals, entertainment and transportation. Spa treatments, bingo, and casino games are extra. There are different price points for staterooms. For example, a balcony room or ocean view room is more expensive than an interior room. But every passenger has the exact same shipboard privileges unless they are staying in one of the exclusive suites, which can cost several times as much as a regular room. There is always a variety of free activities on ocean-going vessels, including Broadway-style shows, ice sculpture demonstrations, comedy club entertainment, miniature golf, health seminars and karaoke. Other passengers prefer to relax with a good book or sunbathe. Creating your own itinerary is another reason cruising has become so popular. In the United States, there are 22 coastal departure ports, including Norfolk, Virginia; New Orleans, Louisiana; Baltimore, Maryland; Charleston, South Carolina; Norfolk, Virginia; Mobile, Alabama; and Fort Lauderdale, Jacksonville, Miami and Tampa, all in Florida.

American Cruise Lines

River cruising Several companies offer river cruises. American Cruise Lines’ offerings include the Hudson River, New

England Islands, Historic South and Golden Isles, Columbia and Snake Rivers, Alaska Inside Passage, Lower Mississippi River, Upper Mississippi River and Ohio River. In total, American Cruise Lines visits 28 states offering 35 itineraries ranging from five to 22 days in length. The price includes a complimentary guided tour at every port, food and drinks, onboard entertainment and lectures, and a daily cocktail before dinner. Other river cruise lines in the United States are Viking Cruises, American Queen Steamboat Company, Pearl Seas Cruises and St. Lawrence Cruise Line. River cruise ports-of-call in the United States include Astoria and Portland, Oregon; Houmas House Plantation, Nottoway Plantation, Oak Alley and St. Francisville, all in Louisiana; Memphis and Nashville, Tennessee; La Crosse and Red Wing, Wisconsin; St. Simon Island, Georgia; and Greenville, Natchez and Vicksburg, all in Mississippi. Great Lake cruises Three companies cruise the Great Lakes from late May through mid-September: Pearl Seas Cruises, Victory Cruise Lines and Blount Small Ship Adventures. Marilyn Jones ( has been a journalist and photographer for more than 30 years.

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Carolina Living

Security Steps

Going on vacation? Consider these devices to protect your home While many families excitedly look forward to their getaways, unfortunately, vacation time is when burglars get to work. There’s nothing worse than coming back from a relaxing vacation to a stressful situation at home, so it is best to be prepared before you travel. Security tech Investing in a quality, easy-to-use security system grants peace of mind for many travelers. Already have one? This may sound simple, but be sure to remember to set your home security systems to the appropriate settings before leaving for travel. However, if you forget to arm your system before you leave, you may still be able set it. Some home security systems let you arm or disarm your system by remotely accessing it via smartphone, tablet or computer. You can also set up alerts to remind you if your system hasn’t been armed. You could also invest in a smart doorbell that automatically sends a text or email to you each time the bell is triggered. Take a look at your security cameras to make sure everything is OK, or have a trusted neighbor stop by. Smart doorbells can also trigger entryway lighting to give the illusion that someone is home. Remote locks are also useful if you are planning on being away but still need to allow certain visitors into your home while you’re gone. You’ll be able to lock and unlock your doors remotely and be alerted every time

If your home looks unlived in, that is often a green light for a passing burglar.

the door is unlocked. This means if you happen to forget your house keys, you’ll be able to let yourself in when you return from vacation. If you’re leaving your teens or young adult children behind, you can get alerts for when they leave or come home. You can even set up an emergency automation that unlocks your doors if a fire is detected. If you’re still likely to worry with a home security system, smart doorbell and remote lock, then consider video surveillance. You’ll be able to see live video of your home from your smartphone, tablet or computer and sync your cameras to motion detectors so you can receive video clips of movement as soon as the sensors are triggered. Trick the burglars If your home looks unlived in, that is often a green light for a passing burglar. Here are a few ways to create the illusion that someone is staying at your home: ■■ Ask a neighbor, friend or family member to help

collect mail and packages and move cars.

■■ Arrange to have your lawn mowed, if

you are gone more than a week.

■■ Use a smart lighting system that lets you program

lights to come on at specific times each day.

Visit for more tips on protecting your home while you’re away. —Brandpoint

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Carolina Living

Geared for S  afety Electric co-op lineworkers wear special gear to help them stay safe on the job. Can you match the descriptions below to the correct safety equipment?Use the answer key to check your work! Hard hat Safety goggles

Insulated gloves Flame-resistant clothing


These provide extra protection while lineworkers work with heavy materials that could fall near their feet.


This material keeps lineworkers safe from electrical hazards.

Equipment belt


This protects lineworkers from head injuries and falling debris.


These insulated protectors keep lineworkers safe from electrical shock while working on power lines.


These keep debris away from lineworkers’ eyes while on the job.

6 Work boots

This is a handy piece of safety gear that holds tools and other equipment.

Answers: 1. Work boots 2. Flame-resistant clothing 3. Hard hat 4. Insulated gloves 5. Safety goggles 6. Equipment belt April 2019  | 27

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Carolina Living

Italian Stir-Fried Pork and Pasta 1 (11/2 lb.) garlic and herb marinated pork loin* 1 (8-ounce) package spiral pasta 2 tablespoons olive oil 2 small zucchini squash, sliced lengthwise and cut into 1/2-inch slices 1 small red onion, thinly sliced

Reimagine Mealtime

Pork can transform classic dishes One of the easiest ways to change things up in the kitchen is to recreate a traditional dish by replacing its main ingredient. As an alternative to the typical chicken or beef, fresh pork is a versatile, convenient and flavorful protein that can transform a predictable meal into something new and delicious. Instead of chicken Florentine, try Pork Chops in Creamy Roasted Garlic Florentine Sauce, or rethink the typical weeknight dinner with this Italian Stir-Fried Pork and Pasta. For additional recipes, visit —

8 sliced mushrooms ½ cup julienne-sliced sundried tomatoes 1 teaspoon minced garlic ¼ cup butter ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

Heat skillet or wok to 400 degrees. Slice marinated pork loin filet into thin strips. Cook pasta according to package directions. Add pork strips and oil to heated skillet. Stir-fry until meat is browned, about 5 minutes. Add zucchini, onion, mushrooms, tomatoes, garlic and butter to skillet; stir-fry until vegetables are crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Drain pasta and add to pork and vegetable mixture with cheese and basil; toss to coat. Yield: 4 servings

* Ready-made pork products include Smithfield’s Roasted Garlic & Herb Marinated Fresh Pork Loin Filet. You can also buy garlic and herb marinades at the store, or make your own, to taste. You’ll need a cup and a half of marinade for this recipe. Marinate the pork in your fridge for at least one hour, or up to one day.

Pork Chops in Creamy Roasted Garlic Florentine Sauce 4 boneless pork chops Salt and pepper, to taste 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided 8 cloves garlic, minced ¼ cup bacon pieces, half-cooked ½ cup chicken stock 2 cups heavy cream 1½ cups chopped fresh baby spinach ½ cup chopped fresh tomato ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning Season pork chops on both sides with salt and pepper, to taste. In large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium heat. Cook pork chops 4–5 minutes per side

until internal temperature reaches 145 degrees. Remove pork chops from pan and keep warm. In same skillet, heat remaining oil over medium heat. Add minced garlic and partially cooked bacon to skillet; cook until tender, about 3 minutes. Add chicken stock and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and add heavy cream. Season with salt and pepper. Add spinach and tomatoes to sauce; let spinach wilt. Stir in Parmesan cheese and Italian seasoning; simmer about 3 minutes. Return pork chops to pan along with juices. Spoon Florentine sauce over chops; simmer 3–5 minutes. Yield: 4 servings

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Efficiency Fact or Fiction?

Breaking down energy-saving claims By Pat Keegan and Brad Thiessen


hen it comes to saving energy, it can be confusing to figure out what works and what doesn’t. Let’s take a look at seven common energy-saving claims and sort fact from fiction.

Washing dishes by hand typically uses more energy than the dishwasher. Michael Mroczek


Catt Liu


Energy Sense

Claim #1: Turning lights off and on uses more energy than just leaving them on. Not true. Turning off lights definitely reduces energy use. Turn off LED and incandescent bulbs every time you leave the room. The situation is a little different with compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs). Turning them off does save energy but can shorten the life of the bulb. The rule of thumb for CFLs is to turn them off any time they won’t be used for 15 minutes or more. Claim #2: Replacing old windows with new, more efficient ones can cut energy use in half. This is not accurate. While replacing inefficient windows with new, energy efficient windows can cut the heat loss through windows in half (or more), windows typically account for only about 25 to 30 percent of your space heating costs. The amount of energy you use for heating and cooling is likely one third to one half of your total energy use, so replacing your old windows might only reduce your total energy costs by about 10 percent. When you consider the high cost of new windows, you may not recoup your investment for 15 or 20 years, or even longer. Claim #3: Burning wood in a fireplace should save on heating costs. Possibly, but certain conditions need to be met. The wood should be dry and burned efficiently in a properly installed, properly placed, high‑efficiency wood stove or fireplace insert. Otherwise, it’s likely you’ll lose as much heat through your chimney as you’re distributing throughout the house. Claim #4: Using the dishwasher is just as efficient as washing dishes by hand. Yes — in fact, it’s usually more efficient! Properly used dishwashers actually use less water while doing a better job, and as a bonus, they will save you more than 200 hours of handwashing a year. For maximum savings, set your water heater to about 120 degrees and use the most efficient wash/dry settings.

Replacing your old windows with newer, efficient ones won’t cut your energy costs in half, but it could reduce your costs by about 10 percent.

Claim #5: It’s better to heat individual rooms with an electric space heater and keep the doors closed to trap the heat. It’s possible to save money with an electric space heater if you use it only a few hours a day and reduce your home’s thermostat setting by a couple degrees. Space heaters can cause fires, so they need to be used wisely and should never be left unattended. Which brings us to the next claim … Claim #6: Close vents in rooms that aren’t used. Most experts advise against this because closing supply registers forces your furnace or A/C unit to work harder. They advise keeping all your vents and doors open. If your system supplies too much heat to some rooms and too little to other rooms, you should talk to a heating and air conditioning professional about modifying your ductwork. Claim #7: The age of a home determines how energy efficient it is. Not necessarily. Newer homes tend to be more efficient because energy codes have improved, but every home can have hidden energy issues, no matter its age. If you want to evaluate the efficiency of your home, it’s best to schedule an energy audit with a professional recommended by your local electric cooperative. This column was co-written by Pat Keegan and Brad Thiessen of Collaborative Efficiency. Visit for more ideas on energy efficiency.

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Roadside Wonders

Barn quilts connect the history, culture and fabric of communities By Pamela A. Keene

Driving the highways and backroads of Western North Carolina, you’re bound to spot one: a “barn quilt.” More than 300 brightly painted squares grace barns, businesses and homes throughout the western part of the state.

Over the years, other states developed their own quilt trails. By 2008, Toe River Arts Council in Burnsville had received funding from Handmade in America to start a quilt trail, but there was no one to manage it. As a quilter, Barbara spoke up. “How hard could it be?” she says. “We eventually became an independent nonprofit Carole Pearson with a nt of organization. And we set up guitar barn quilt in fro y ller some guidelines, such as the One of a Kind Art Ga designs could contain no words or numbers, they must be translatable to a traditional quilt made of fabric, they couldn’t be used as a company logo or be made from a company logo, and they must portray a connection to history or culture.” The Websters created a board of directors that researched the optimum materials for long-lasting construction, volunteered to work and to raise additional funds. The group enlisted help from schools, businesses and individuals in the community to bring the project to fruition. “Students in the Mitchell County High School industrial arts program make the frames and blocks,” says Carole Pearson, who now serves as president of the organization. She and her sister June coordinate the trail and creation of new blocks, many of which are still designed by the Websters, who now live in New Market, Tennessee.


“While they’re pretty to look at, there’s much more to the story of barn quilts here in Western North Carolina.”


Carole Pears

These wooden blocks represent a labor of love, many created by Barbara and Martin Webster starting in 2008. At first concentrated in Yancey and Mitchell counties, barn quilts have spread across the Tar Heel State as others have taken up the cause. “While they’re pretty to look at, there’s much more to the story of barn quilts here in Western North Carolina,” says Barbara Webster, former executive director of Quilt Trails of Western North Carolina ( “Barn quilts blend history, culture and community spirit and help tell the stories of the sites where they hang. Each block has been carefully designed or chosen to trigger the story of the family, business or school where it resides. You can learn the history of the area by finding the quilt blocks.” Barn quilts originated in Adams County, Ohio, when Donna Sue Groves wanted to honor her mother and her Appalachian heritage by hanging a painted quilt on her barn. By 2001, the project morphed into a series of 20 quilts that became a driving tour, drawing visitors to the area, increasing tourism and bringing local heritage to the forefront.

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Carole Pearson

A geometric pattern portrays NC birds Carole Pearson

Mountain Heritage High School students constructed many of the original blocks. “Some of the prep work is done by a group for people with developmental disabilities. It gives them a sense of purpose and a place to participate in a community project. They can see the results of their work in the area as more quilt squares are installed,” Barbara explains. “We tried to involve as many in the community as possible, because we wanted the community to feel ownership of the project. After all, the blocks are telling their stories.” “As the trail grew, we were amazed by what happened,” she says. “People were coming from all over the United States to see our barn quilts. Quilters came by the busload.” One of the most popular quilt squares is the Sundial, according to Barbara, which hangs on the side of the Yancey County News building in Burnsville and is visible from the town square. “It’s one of the few exceptions to our ‘no numbers’ guideline, but it is a real showpiece. It’s a working sundial, and it’s very accurate. Bob Hampton suggested it and did the math used to create it,” Barbara says. “Teachers take their students on field trips to teach them how to read a sundial.”


Carole Pears

of y

More than 300 quilt squares make up the Quilt Trails of Western North Carolina

Volunteer Kathy Rose paints a sunflower barn quilt at a studio in Burnsville.


Quilt Trails of Western North Carolina has developed 10 itineraries for self-guided tours. Booklets detailing the tours are available at One-of-a-Kind Gallery in Micaville (, which serves as the home base for the organization, operating a gift shop with books, maps, T-shirts and other trail mementos. Now, more than 300 quilt squares make up the Quilt Trails of Western North Carolina, mostly in Yancey, Mitchell and Haywood counties and the surrounding areas. Ashe County has developed six drivable trails to showcase its own quilt trail (, many of which were created by Syndi and Renee Brooks. The pair teach barn quilt-making and sell barn quilt supplies at their West Jefferson studio, Two Quilt Girls ( “We were so impressed with the quilt squares we saw in Hendersonville several years ago that we decided to make one for ourselves,” Syndi says. “It really caught on and over the years, so many people have wanted them. Renee and I have probably created nearly 3,000 in the United States since 2011. About one-third of them are in North Carolina.” “Barn quilts can have such interesting stories,” she adds. “They’re a special reflection of history and women’s work. They’re sort of like magic that can transport you down memory lane or evoke a sense of well-being. People really love them.” Pamela A. Keene is a freelance journalist who writes for magazines and newspapers across the Southeast and nationally.

Barn Quilts, Further Afield Colorful barn quilts can be found throughout North Carolina and nationwide. Here are a few resources to help find them: ■■ Franklin & Martin Counties

Quilt Trails of the Tar and Roanoke Rivers includes installations in Franklin, Martin and soon Pitt counties. ■■ Person County

What began as an idea in 2015 now amounts to quilt blocks adorning barns, sheds and businesses across Person County. ■■ Randolph County

This trail features dozens of quilt blocks — keep an eye out for bees, flowers and cows hidden in some. A “Trail Gallery” link lists installations on a map. ■■ Yadkin County

Follow a map to spot 50 colorful quilts on barns and businesses throughout Yadkin County. ■■ Nationwide

Going on a road trip? Search by state and county to find barn quilts along your route.

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a m r


Along the Writers’ Path

Renee Gannon

Travel the literary highway in North Carolina’s Piedmont By Renee C. Gannon

North Carolina holds a bounty of literary treasures, from Nicholas Sparks’ characters living and loving along the coast, to Thomas Wolfe never really able to go home again to his mother’s boarding house in Asheville. Piedmont writers penned poetry and prose that bring to life early settlers farming its rolling hills, and lay bare the struggles of African Americans to find their voice and the plight of millworkers in the 19th and 20th centuries. Places such as the Bethesda community outside of Durham were turned into the fictional small town of Listre, where Clyde Edgerton populated it with characters we all connect to members of our own family. Rowan County became Raven County in John Hart’s mysteries — those of us who grew up in that area recognize the clay-red Yadkin River and the land it flows through. Readers can follow the story, thanks to a three-volume set of literary trail guidebooks written by Georgann Eubanks in association with the North Carolina Arts Council. Each volume spans a different region of the state, organized into tours that provide a list of writers who have a connection to a specific area, a basic route to follow and key sites to visit. The books list famous and not-so-famous names, many of whom will bring a smile of recognition. To provide a taste of these rich resources, I set a course to loosely follow Tour 12 of the “Literary Trails of the North Carolina Piedmont.” The tour begins in High Point, winds its way through rural Guilford County and ends in Greensboro.


Mystery writer and Greensboro native Margaret Maron has killed characters all across the state, including in High Point. In “Killer Market,” character Judge Deborah Knott travels to High Point, where she must solve a murder during the International Home Furnishings Market trade show (now called High Point Market). High Point (, known as the furniture capital of the world, is the start of tour 12. The tour travels along Main Street, through downtown, past old brick buildings and new glass and steel ones, most of which are tied to the furniture business. The International Home Furnishings Center (IHFC) on

Commerce Avenue is the heart of the High Point Market during the trade show. It also houses the High Point Theatre. The downtown area is walkable, with sites such as the Historic Train Depot, the various furniture galleries and the “World’s Largest Chest of Drawers.” A must-see is the High Point Museum ( An exhibit on jazz saxophonist and High Point native John Coltrane is just one of the pieces of history here. Permanent galleries include the Furniture Heritage Exhibit and the Meredith’s Miniatures Exhibit, which showcases local artist Meredith Slane Michener’s views of life in miniature.


Tour 12 goes off the beaten path en route to Greensboro. I follow NC Highway 62, also known as Liberty Road, into rural Guilford County in search of the Centre Meeting House, a community founded by Quakers in the mid1700s. Across from the current Centre church is a small stream known as Polecat Creek. Somewhere along its banks once sat a small farm that was the 1908 birthplace of Edward R. Murrow. The famed broadcast journalist first let his voice be heard at the age of four while attending a Quaker Friends meeting, according to the guidebook. The small boy had a booming voice even then, when he confessed to killing a rabbit and selling it on the Sabbath.

“ The true adventurer goes forth aimless and uncalculating to meet and greet unknown fate.” —O. Henry

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L G P A ( S n

h h m “ f a d i

f t s m o r

l o h f l o

R i R s A t

Opposite: Typewriters at the Greensboro History Museum

The NC historic marker at the corner of Randleman Road and NC 62 notes Murrow’s birthplace. In Greensboro, a main boulevard bears his name and a giant bust of Murrow resides on the lawn of the Greensboro History Museum.


Renee Gannon

“Literary Trails of North Carolina” is a three-volume set by Georgann Eubanks that can be purchased together or individually. Published by UNC Press, softcover, 1,352 pages (set of three for $66). Piedmont volume available in softcover, 472 pages ($23) or ebook ($17.99).

High Point CVB

Your Guide to the Literature

Renee Gannon

Renee Gannon

Literary connections to Bennett College, UNC Greensboro, Guilford College, Fisher Park and Tannenbaum Historic Park are mentioned in the guidebook, and North Carolina A&T University also is found on the route in Greensboro ( A downtown walking tour of Elm Street prominently features one of the city’s well-known native sons: O. Henry. Born William Sydney Porter in 1862, he was known by his penname of O. Henry. The short story writer weaved humor along with twists and turns into his stories. His most famous stories of the more than 400 written include “The Gift of the Magi” and “The Ransom of Red Chief.” His first 20 years were spent in Greensboro, going to school and working as pharmacist at the old Porter Drug Store in downtown. He was a people watcher, learning nuances of individuals that would later help develop his characters. The Greensboro History Museum ( features an exhibit on O. Henry as well as a typewriter exhibit that holds one of O. Henry’s typewriters as well as those of several other local writers. The hands-on exhibit features machines both old and newer that visitors can peck away on. The public library next door has O. Henry material in its reference room. A statue of young O. Henry stands on the museum’s lawn next to the Murrow bust (the museum is on the site of the old Lindsay Street School, where O. Henry attended high school). A trio of statues at 301 North Elm Street features a life-size statue of O. Henry, one of his dog, and a large, bronze open book that features a small boy peeking out of the pages and scanning lines from his stories. Turn right on Elm Street to visit the International Civil Rights Center and Museum (, housed in the old Woolworth’s building and the site of historic Civil Rights lunch counter sit-ins led by NC A&T students (their statue stands in front of the school’s Dudley Building). Across the street from the Civil Rights Center is the building that once housed Porter Drug Store.

Top: The three-statue O. Henry exhibit in Greensboro Above left: The “World’s Largest Chest of Drawers” in High Point Above right: The statue of a teen O. Henry stands just beyond the Edward R. Murrow bust in Greensboro.

At the intersection of Bellemeade and North Elm Streets once stood the original O. Henry Hotel from 1919 until the 1960s. The current O. Henry Hotel is two miles away and worth a visit ( Also located on South Elm Street is Scuppernong Books (, an independent bookstore owned by Brian Lampkin. The store is a good place to rest along the trail, enjoy a cup of coffee and browse its book selection. The store is home to the Greensboro Bound Literary Festival(, set for May 17–19. The tours found in the three volumes of Eubanks’ guidebooks offer a unique way to see North Carolina, and reason to, as O. Henry said, “Inject a few raisins of conversation into the tasteless dough of existence.” For more information on North Carolina literary connections, access an interactive map at, maintained by UNC Greensboro, the State Library of North Carolina, and the Institute of Museum and Library Services. Renee C. Gannon is the senior associate editor of Carolina Country.

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Your Heart’s Adventure Awaits!

The North Carolina Zoo


The Liberty Antiques Festival


Kersey Valley Attractions


#VisitAikenSC |

DestinationThink_AikenSC_SCLiving-Halfpage-7-5X4-875.indd 1

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Legends live on in Corolla. Corolla.

Discover a land of wild wonder

on the Currituck Outer Banks, North Carolina. The legendary wild horses of Corolla, unique historical sites and family friendly beaches are just a few of the reasons why now is a great time to visit.

Corolla • Carova • The Mainland

Call 877.287.7488 for your free visitor’s guide.

Mark yer calendar for PirateFest!

AHOY MATEYS! Make way to a pirate paradise in Uptown Greenville April 12-13! Commence on Friday with a free concert, food trucks, and a carnival then parlay that into Saturday with multiple live music stages, a BMX expo, grog garden, arts & crafts vendors, a pirate encampment with sword fighting, roving pirates, and more!

It’s kind of a


APRIL 13th

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Opposite: Drummer Melvin Park in his hometown of Kinston

ROCKY MOUNT, PRINCETON & TARBORO Notable locals: The Barnes family (gospel), George Higgs (blues), Thelonious Monk (jazz)

Titus Brooks Heavins

Hear the Horns, Feel the Beat

‘African American Music Trails’ celebrates Eastern NC’s musical roots By Scott Gates

The landscape of North Carolina reverberates with a rich history of music and musicians who drew inspiration from its fields, churches, communities and cityscapes. The deep hollers of the Appalachians cultivated bluegrass, string bands and gospel artists. Cities of the Piedmont gave rise to blues, country, rock and hip hop acts. And the tobacco warehouses, schools and towns of Eastern North Carolina are where several notable jazz, blues, funk and R&B musicians got their start. Eastern North Carolina, in particular, was a hotbed of African American talent from the early 1900s into the ’70s and beyond, with big-name acts — including The Monitors, James Brown and Parliament — drawing on local musicians to define their sound. This local talent turned otherwise sleepy towns into swinging hot spots. “At one particular time, Kinston was almost like a little New York,” remembers Dick Knight, a retired music teacher and horn player who performed with The Monitors, James Brown and Otis Redding, among others. “Saturday night you had five or six different bands playing different places … I never did get a chance to get bored for wanting to play my instrument with a band.” Dick’s memories as quoted here, as well as those of more than 90 other musicians, are captured in “African American Music Trails of Eastern North Carolina,” a guidebook to the region’s musical heritage compiled by the NC Department of Cultural Resources. The guide leads readers through the music of the eight contiguous counties of the region, grouping them by community. Along the way, you’ll get a sense of each area’s musical roots, as well as spots to eat, socialize and enjoy live music today.

In the 20th century, a main railroad line, established cotton mill and thriving tobacco market put Rocky Mount on the map. Workers spread the blues, and in the 1940s and ’50s, annual all-night summer dances in Rocky Mount called “June Germans” drew big acts like Ella Fitzgerald and Count Basie. HEAR IT FOR YOURSELF Juneteenth Community Empowerment Festival May 31  –  June 1 Rocky Mount’s Imperial Centre for the Arts & Science presents music, dancing and African American history and cultural events.

WILSON AREA Notable locals: John Henry Fortescue, aka Guitar Shorty (blues), The Monitors (R&B)

Wilson was a major clearinghouse for brightleaf tobacco in the early 1900s, and big auction days drew travelers from across the region. Blues players took advantage of the crowds to busk outside warehouses on auction days. Those warehouses also served as venues, hosting dances with big band heavy-hitters like Glenn Miller and Duke Ellington. HEAR IT FOR YOURSELF Boykin Series 22 | April 19 Organized by the Arts Council of Wilson, Zydeco great C.J. Chenier will play at the Edna Boykin Cultural Center as part of the series.

GREENVILLE AREA Notable locals: Billy Taylor (jazz), Carroll V. Dashiell (jazz)

School auditoriums and marching bands were breeding grounds for musical talent in Greenville, as were clubs in the black business district. The local Elks Lodge held “turnouts,” brass-band funerals with parades similar to New Orleans jazz funerals. Native jazz pianist Billy Taylor maintained ties to the area throughout his life and inspired East Carolina University’s jazz studies program. HEAR IT FOR YOURSELF Billy Taylor Jazz Festival | April 10–13 African American Music Series | Second Fridays Local musicians perform at Greenville’s Emerge Gallery & Art Center.

Local talent turned otherwise sleepy towns into swinging hot spots.

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GOLDSBORO AREA Goldsboro, Snow Hill and surrounding communities have a strong heritage of gospel music. And Seymour Johnson Air Force Base has long drawn a diverse population from across the country, fueling an eclectic blend of musical talents. In the 1970s and ’80s, the Greene County High School marching band won several national competitions and marched in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade in New York.

Joyner Library, ECU

Notable locals: The Anointed Jackson Sisters (gospel), Lee Fields (soul, deep funk), The Speight Sisters (gospel)

HEAR IT FOR YOURSELF Arts Council of Wayne Count | Ongoing Sponsors R&B and jazz jams, concerts and festivals throughout spring and summer months.

Notable locals: Little Eva (pop, R&B), Maceo & Melvin Parker and others from the James Brown Band (funk), Geneva Perry (jazz)

HEAR IT FOR YOURSELF Kinston Community Council for the Arts | Ongoing Hosts a variety of arts- and cultural-related programs and activities and was an original champion of the African American Music project.

Joyner Library, ECU

Like others in the region in the early and mid-1900s, dances held in Kinston’s tobacco warehouses were a draw for several big acts, including Fats Domino, Chubby Checker and Ray Charles. In 1947, the Kinston Daily Free Press noted that the town was the only Eastern NC stop Cab Calloway had planned on tour. Eva Narcissus Boyd (who went by “Little Eva” onstage) — of the 1962 chart-topping hit “The Locomotion” — was born in Belhaven but lived the latter part of her life in Kinston.

Titus Brooks Heavins


Scott Gates is senior editor of Carolina Country.

Your Guide to the Music

Find other resources online at, including a guide to local restaurants by Carolina Country contributor and award‑winning journalist Bridgette Lacy.

City of Goldshoro

“African American Music Trails of Eastern North Carolina” by Sarah Bryan and Beverly Patterson provides an in-depth history of music in the region including memories from modern-day musicians. The guide includes a CD with 17 recordings from many of the region’s notable artists. Published by UNC Press, softcover, 218 pages ($21) or ebook ($14.99).

Top to bottom: 1911 depiction of the railroad that brought workers and musicians alike to Rocky Mount. The Monitors, who hail from Wilson, setting up for a performance. Louis Armstrong playing a 1959 show in North Carolina African American Music Trails mural in Goldsboro

Watch and hear performances from some of Eastern NC’s greats, including Little Eva and Guitar Shorty. April 2019  | 37

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Set Sail on the Albemarle Loop

Paula Fitzgerald

A nautical trail gives boaters access to waterfront gems By Gary Lico and Claude Milot

North Carolina has hundreds of miles of hiking trails — more than 600 in state parks alone. But there is another kind of trail at the eastern end of the state that you won’t find on any hiking map. This “trail,” the Albemarle Loop, winds its way around the open water of the Albemarle Sound. The Albemarle Sound is the expansive, relatively shallow body of fresh water west of the Outer Banks. It’s immensely popular with boaters, from power to sail, from day-trippers to “liveaboards.” The Intracoastal Waterway sees thousands of boaters heading north for the summer or south for the winter, and five years ago, a group from Albemarle Plantation in Hertford sought to bring more visitors to the area and rallied the region to coordinate marketing efforts. The Albemarle Loop links marinas and waterfront towns on a water-borne journey of nearly 200 miles covering 450 square miles of water. “We’re trying to get them to pause, turn west, and visit us,” says Jack Atwell, chief organizer of The Loop. “Boaters are always looking for new places to explore, places off the beaten track.” It’s catching on: This past season, The Loop saw a visitor increase of almost 80 percent from just a few years ago. For sailors with a seaworthy vessel and time on their hands, here’s what awaits: Edenton: “The South’s Prettiest Small Town”

Shallowbag Marina is a popular stop for those on an annual spring migration up the Intracoastal Waterway from Florida to Norfolk, and where we will begin the Loop. From here you can visit Manteo or refuel and grab a bite at the Alligator River Marina before heading west into Albemarle Sound. Next stop along the south shore is Columbia, gateway to many natural habitats in this part of the country. Columbia has two marinas. One is the municipal dock on the Scuppernong River, a short distance from the Pocosin Arts Center and the Scuppernong River Interpretive Trail. Not far away is Yacht Doc at Cyprus Cove marina, a complete boat storage, service and repair facility. Sailing west once again, sailors come to the mouth of the Roanoke River. Upstream is the town of Plymouth, famous for the annual NC Black Bear Festival in June ( and its re-enactment of the Civil War Battle of Plymouth. Directly north across the Sound is 51 House, a fine-dining establishment reminiscent of Edenton’s colonial era. East of 51 House and just around the corner, nautically speaking, is Edenton, “The South’s Prettiest Small Town” and former capital of North Carolina, with its many shops and restaurants, guided walking tours of its many magnificent mansions along tree-lined streets, some dating back to the 1800s. From Edenton, boaters sail east to Albemarle Plantation, which boasts a 166-slip marina and a community with a wide range of amenities available to visitors, including restaurants, a championship golf course, a swimming pool and three well-kept Bocce Ball courts.

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Paula Fitzgerald

The Albemarle Loop links marinas and waterfront towns on a water‑borne journey of nearly 200 miles covering 450 square miles of water. Paula Fitzgerald

Paula Fitzgerald


Paula Fitzgerald


Paula Fitzgerald

Sailing around Durant’s Neck and up the Perquimans River, sailors now come to Hertford, where they can visit the Jim “Catfish” Hunter Museum dedicated to the Baseball Hall of Famer and the town’s favorite son. From Hertford, boaters sail down the Perquimans and then up the Pasquotank River to Elizabeth City for a stay at the city’s municipal dock or the nearby Pelican Marina. Both are within walking distance of the splendid Museum of the Albemarle and a vibrant downtown with restaurants, shopping and art galleries. Finally, sailors enter the Dismal Swamp Canal and tie up at the Dismal Swamp Welcome Center for an overnight stay and a visit just across the canal to Dismal Swamp State Park before the last leg of their journey to Norfolk and the completion of the Albemarle Loop. Most members of the Loop — marinas and town docks — offer two nights of free dockage to any Loop visitors (several require advance reservations), which can save travelers more than $2,000. A Passport program encourages just that: Frequent visitors can qualify for discounts on services, supplies, and fuel at participating member stops. There’s even a loaner car at two locations to tool around town. With miles and miles of open sky and the beauty of Albemarle Sound, the Albemarle Loop awaits adventurers, pleasure boaters and visitors of all kinds.

Shallowbag Bay

Albemarle Sound

Gary Lico is a television executive and creator of “Forensic Files” who now calls Eastern NC home. Claude Milot is a Hertford-based writer.

Life on the Loop Visit for more information about the trail, including marina details, coupons and events. This May, the Albemarle Loop is presenting “Life on the Loop — Spring Celebration,” a first-time festival of events in sites and towns along Albemarle Sound. Events will highlight the best in the region’s culinary and visual arts, history, music, boating, sports and local festivals.

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Chetola Resort A

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Carolina Country is partnering with Chetola Resort at Blowing Rock to offer a random drawing for a weekend getaway package that includes:

❧ A two-night stay in the Bob Timberlake Inn ❧ Breakfast for two each day ❧ Dinner at Timberlake’s Restaurant ($100 credit) ❧ One 60-minute couple’s massage at The Spa The 87-acre Chetola Resort is within walking distance of Blowing Rock in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina.

Visit by April 30 to enter the random drawing. NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. To enter, complete online entry form at for a chance to win. All contact information will remain confidential. One entry per person, drawn by random; odds of receiving the one (1) 2-night weekend stay resort package (estimated retail value of $1,500) depend upon number of entries received. The winner will receive an IRS Form 1099 in the amount of the prize and is liable for any and all taxes related to accepting the prize. Booking exclusions apply and reservations are subject to space availability. Offer expires Dec. 23, 2020. Entries must be completed online at by April 30, 2019.

9AM - 3:30PM 2019


Chart your next adventure. NC’s best destinations and events, all online.

Antique & Steam Tractors Modern Farming Equipment Train Rides Hay Rides Blacksmith Demonstrations Master Gardeners Display Kiddie Tractor Pull Tractor Parade Much More!

Find your adventure on

1 Samuel Spencer Drive, Spencer, NC 704-636-2889 NCTRANS.ORG 40  |

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Carolina Compass

Davie Craft Spring Fling April 12–13, Mocksville 336-998-2276

Surry County Gardening Symposium Speakers, lunch April 13, Dobson 919-788-9700

5-Mile Yard Sale April 13, Carthage 910-638-9006

Depot District Music Fest Headliner Delbert McClinton April 13, Lexington

Big Band Jazz Andy Jay

Cider, Wine & Dine Gala, live music April 25–28, Hendersonville

April Events MOUNTAINS Art in the Hall Mixed media exhibit April 1 through May 24, Morganton 828-438-5362

All Together Now Pediatric patients’ art April 6–28, Asheville 828-253-7651

Other Lives of Daniel Boone

Highland Games

Pioneer Days & Car Show

Bagpiping, athletics April 12–14, Huntersville 704-875-3113

Door prizes, dancing April 27, Old Fort 828-668-9259

Cider, Wine & Dine Gala, live music April 25–28, Hendersonville 800-828-4244

An Evening of One-Acts April 26, Franklin 828-524-1598

Blowing Rock Trout Derby April 6, Blowing Rock 828-295-4636

Burnsville Metric Bike ride, celebration April 27, Burnsville 828-682-7413

A Glimpse of His Last Days Musical about Jesus April 12–13, Franklin 828–524.-598

PIEDMONT Whispers & Echoes

See more events online with photos, descriptions, maps and directions.




For June: April 25 For July: May 25

Vendors, Master Gardeners April 13, Concord 704-920-3310

Michael Carbonaro Live!

Gallery Goes Pop: Warhol

Earth Day Jam

Artists’ silk-screened images Through April 12, Fayetteville 910-425-5379

Full Frame Documentary Festival Films morning to midnight April 4–7, Durham 919-687-4100 Planetarium Show April 5, Gastonia 704-866-6900 Free Movie Friday Series April 5, Roxboro 336-597-1709

High 5 at Hanging Rock Listing Deadlines: Submit Listings Online:

Herb & Plant Sale

Magic antics April 14, Durham 919-680-2787

Matilda 77

Year of the Woman Lecture Series April 13, Pineville 704-889-7145

Through April 21, Hillsborough 919-732-5001

Our Carolina Sky


NCCU Ensemble April 13, Roxboro 336-597-1709

Running, hiking April 6, Danbury

Music, arts April 19–20, Salisbury 980-234-4800

Indian Tribe Powwow Food, drummers April 19–21, Hollister 252-586-4017

The Healer’s Calling Women, medicine in backcountry April 20, Burlington 336-227-4785

Cruz-In Fundraiser Food, vintage vehicles April 20, Statesville 704-546-7210

Moogfest Electronic, pop music April 25–28, Durham

carolina­ (No email or U.S. Mail.)

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Carolina Compass


Southport Spring Festival


Arts and crafts, kids’ activities April 19–20, Southport 910-279-4616

As rated b product

Easter Eggsplosion Races, face painting April 20, Chadbourn 910-377-7791



Easter Egg Hunt April 20, Frisco 252-995-6325

The Franklin County Historic Homes Tour is set for Saturday, April 27, 2019, from 10 a.m until 5 p.m. It features the county’s architectural treasures, including Georgian, Federal and Neoclassical Revival homes. Lunch is available at Lynch Creek Farm ($10 by advance payment only), which is also a tour site. To pay in advance, visit or call 252-767-1167 by April 24. Home tour tickets are $18 in advance at or $20 the day of the tour at the Person Place, 605 N. Main Street, Louisburg. The tour is sponsored by the Person Place Preservation Society. For more information, call 919-906-2108 or visit


Concert on the Common


April 23, Greenville 252-329-4567


• Lifts • Weig

Dogwood Festival Rides, music performances April 26–28, Farmville 252-414-0428






Cycle NC Coastal Ride BBQ Capital Cook-Off

Craft Show

Lighthouse Run/Walk

Contests, live music April 26–27, Lexington

Lunch, face painting April 6, Rocky Mount 252-813-2571

Post-celebration April 13, Oak Island 910-457-6964

Billy Taylor Jazz Festival

North Carolina Pickle Festival

April 10–13, Greenville 252-328-6851

Rides, magicians April 13, Mount Olive 919-658-3113

Heehaw — A County Faith Community Gospel songs, humor April 26–28, Roxboro 336-597-1709

Historic Homes Tour Throughout Franklin County April 27, Louisburg 919-539-7868

Celebration of Spring Pottery Tour Self-guided visits April 27–28, Seagrove 336-707-9124

COAST Power of the Purse Speaker Sandra Joseph April 3, Greenville 252-321-7671

Brunswick Band Spring Concert Pieces by Bernstein, Queen April 6, Caswell Beach, NC

Taverns and Trolley Tour Beer tastings April 6, Edenton 252-482-2637

Brunswick Band Spring Concert Pieces by Bernstein, Queen April 11, Bolivia

The Tams Boogie on Broad Series April 12, Edenton 252-333-0655

Piratefest Rides, sword fighting April 12–13, Greenville 252-561-8400

Tour of Homes and Countryside Carriage rides April 12–13, Edenton 252-482-2637

Plant Sale Chat with master gardeners April 11–14, Wilmington 910-798-7660

In-water Boat Show Seminars, flea market April 12–14, Oriental 252-249-0228

Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen Bluegrass-newgrass April 13, Oriental 252-617-2125

Topper’s Egg Hunt Hayride, hula horses April 13–14, Clinton 910-564-6709

Taste of Greenville Food, fellowship April 18, Greenville 252-975-8540

Earth Day Festival Environmental activities April 18, Oak Island 910-278-5518

April 26–28, Edenton 252-482-0300

Market on Main Demos, vendors April 27, Farmville 252-753-6725


A Taste of Calabash


Seafood, music April 27, Calabash 910-579-6747



ITEM 688


From Stage and Screen Albemarle Chorale performs April 28, Edenton 252-632-0623

BBQ Cook Off Tasting samples April 26–27, Ocean Isle Beach 910-287-2800

Days at the Dock Festival


Bopple race, crafts April 27–28, Holden Beach 910-523-8523




Strawberry and Wine Festival Live music, vendor village April 28, Sunset Beach 910-363-6585

There are more than 250 farmers markets in North Carolina, and some stay open year-round. For one near you, visit

10 FT



Know Before You Go

In case something changes after Carolina Country goes to press, check information from the contact listed.

42  |

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At Harbor Freight Tools, the “Compare to” price means that the specified comparison, which is an item with the same or similar function, was advertised for sale at or above the “Compare to” price by another national retailer in the U.S. within the past 90 days. Prices advertised by others may vary by location. No other meaning of “Compare to” should be implied. For more information, go to or see store associate.

2/20/19 2:34 PM 3/12/19 3:28 PM

Carolina Gardens

“Junior Walker” Catmint

A Purr-fect Perennial Count on Catmint for reliable, showy flowers Story and photos by L.A. Jackson

Catnip (Nepeta cataria) is a plant well-known to kitty owners who love to see their feline friends get goofy. But a close cousin, catmint (Nepeta faassenii), packs a visual pop that can have gardeners purring with delight. Unlike catnip, which shows modest flower displays and tends to be weedy, catmint is more manageable — typical selections are sterile hybrids — and has the potential to be a reliable go-to plant for landscape eye candy. An herbaceous perennial, catmint lights up the spring growing season with a blooming bang, covering itself with masses of small, lavender-bluish blossoms. Flowering at a lesser pace will continue until fall, although it might sputter in the high heat of summer. Nonetheless, when planted in concentrated groupings, catmint will dependably stroke swaths of pleasing color through a garden bed during most of the growing season. Easily winter hardy in all Carolina gardens, catmint is a deer-resistant, low-maintenance, lightly fragrant plant that, once established, can survive drought conditions, creating possibilities for its use in xeriscaping projects and rock gardens. It could suffer in heavy clay or areas that don’t drain well, so generously amending such inhospitable growing grounds with compost or commercial soil

conditioners is a good idea. Note that too much nitrogen fertilizer can cause branches to stretch and flop. While catmint prefers full sun, selecting a site that settles into light shade during the heat of the day will help keep its flower displays looking fresher. For years, the cultivar “Six Hills Giant” has been the catmint’s meow for gardeners, but, as its name implies, it is a biggie, growing up to 3 feet tall and about as wide. So give it room. “Walker’s Low,” the Perennial Plant Association’s Perennial of the Year in 2007, has a similar sizeable display. Looking for less? Consider “Junior Walker,” which only tops out at around 16 inches tall and 30 inches wide. Like catnip, catmint is edible. Culinary herbalists typically use it in sauces, teas, salads and soups. Unlike catnip, catmint does not usually provide an intense buzz for kitties. For intense buzz of an acoustic nature, however, keep in mind catmint flowers are irresistible to hummingbirds and bees. Ditto for butterflies. Catmint should not be hard to find locally this spring, especially at garden centers with decent herb plant sections, but a sure Plan B is to e-shop for this purr-fect perennial online. L.A. Jackson is the former editor of Carolina Gardener magazine. Contact L.A. at

Variegated Cast Iron Plant

Garden To-Do’s for April The cast iron plant (Aspidistra sp.) is as advertised — a tough evergreen perennial that can provide constant verdant color to dry, shady areas, even in the winter. However, arid, cold winds can beat up leaves to the point they become ragtag with streaks of brown splotches. These damaged leaves can be pruned out now to perk up this handsome plant. FF

Green thumb itching to start the summer veggie garden? The middle to end of this month is a good time to give it a scratch with plantings of such heat-loving edibles as peppers, tomatoes, green beans, cucumbers and squash.


Early summer vegetables will jump off to faster starts if they aren’t heavily mulched at planting time. This will give the strengthening spring sun time to warm the soil around young plants to encourage stronger root growth. Then, by late May, when heat of the new summer really starts to be felt, add a serious layer of insulating mulch for the sizzle to come.


Dahlias can be set in the garden as soon as the threat of frost has passed. For taller cultivars, add a support stake in each planting hole to avoid damaging the root system or (especially) tubers later.

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Clogged, Backed—up Septic System…Can anything Restore It? Dear Darryl DEAR DARRYL: My home is about 10 years old, and so is my septic system. I have always taken pride in keeping my home and property in top shape. In fact, my neighbors and I are always kidding each other about who keeps their home and yard nicest. Lately, however, I have had a horrible smell in my yard, and also in one of my bathrooms, coming from the shower drain. My grass is muddy and all the drains in my home are very slow.

My wife is on my back to make the bathroom stop smelling and as you can imagine, my neighbors are having a field day, kidding me about the mud pit and sewage stench in my yard. It’s humiliating. I called a plumber buddy of mine, who recommended pumping (and maybe even replacing) my septic system. But at the potential cost of thousands of dollars, I hate to explore that option. I tried the store bought, so called, Septic treatments out there, and they did Nothing to clear up my problem. Is there anything on the market I can pour or flush into my system that will restore it to normal, and keep it maintained? Clogged and Smelly – Greensboro , NC

CC04-wk.indd 45

DEAR CLOGGED AND SMELLY: As a reader of my column, I am sure you are aware that I have a great deal of experience in this particular field. You will be glad to know that there IS a septic solution that will solve your back-up and effectively restore your entire system from interior piping throughout the septic system and even unclog the drain field as well. SeptiCleanse® Shock and Maintenance Programs deliver your system the fast active bacteria and enzymes needed to liquefy solid waste and free the clogs causing your back-up. This fast-acting bacteria multiplies within minutes of application and is specifically designed to withstand many of today’s anti-bacterial cleaners, soaps and detergents. It comes in dissolvable plastic packs, that you just flush down your toilets. It’s so cool. Plus, they actually Guarantee that it restores ANY system, no matter how bad the problem is. SeptiCleanse® Shock and Maintenance Programs are designed to work on any septic system regardless of design or age. From modern day systems to sand mounds, and systems installed generations ago, I have personally seen SeptiCleanse unclog and restore these systems in a matter of weeks. I highly recommend that you try it before spending any money on repairs. SeptiCleanse products are available online at or you can order or learn more by calling toll free at 1-888-899-8345. If you use the promo code “NCS6", you can get a free shock treatment, added to your order, which normally costs $169. Make sure to use that code when you call or buy online.

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FUN, HOW TO PAN. Carolinas, Virginia, Georgia, Alabama, California. 1-407-282-3594. WWW.GOLDMAPS.COM. TRIANGLE DETECTORS. Large selection of metal detectors and gold prospecting equipment, SALES & RENTALS. Durham 919-949-4007

Business Opportunities FREE CBD STORE! I “Googled” My Symptoms! Turns Out All I Need Is PATENTED 10xPure CBD Oil! NO THC! BUSINESS IS BOOMING CBD REPS WANTED Take Free tour Morton_CarolinaCntry_4.19.qxp_Morton_CarolinaCntry_1.17 2/25/19 1:30 PM Page 1

Miscellaneous WANTED: AMERICAN WHISKEY AND BOURBON BOTTLES OR DECANTERS, sealed and unopened. The older, the better. CASH. Call 540-845-6107 or Email: PLAY GOSPEL SONGS BY EAR—$12.95. “Learn Gospel Music.” Chording, runs, fills—$12.95. Both $24. Davidsons, 6727C Metcalf, Shawnee Mission, Kansas 66204. 913-262-4982. FREE MATERIALS: SOON CHURCH/GOVERNMENT UNITING. Suppressing “Religious Liberty”, enforcing a “National Sunday Law”. Be informed! Need mailing address only. TBSM, Box 99, Lenoir City, TN 37771. 1-888-211-1715. FARM FENCING Watterson Tree Farm installs any type field fencing, especially woven wire with wooden posts, and board fencing. Certified Redbrand installer and Kencove dealer. Website Wildlife Damage Control Agent, David 240-498-8054 email The N.C. Association of Electric Cooperatives and its member cooperatives do not endorse the services and products advertised. Readers are advised to understand fully any agreement or purchase they make. To place a classified ad:

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Contact us at 800.633.8969 or Mobile Home Roofover Systems Since 1983

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Carolina Kitchen

NC Sweet Potato, Pecan and Cheddar Dutch Baby With Whipped Maple Cream

Sometimes called a German pancake, this oven-baked puffy American popover (sweet or savory) is great for breakfast, brunch or a light spring supper. Pairs well with a pile of bacon!

5 3 ¾ ¾ ¼ 2 ½

1 1 1 ½

tablespoons butter, divided large eggs cup milk cup self-rising flour teaspoon salt teaspoons vanilla teaspoon of cinnamon or apple pie spice cup grated sweet potato tablespoon light brown sugar cup grated sharp cheddar cheese cup chopped pecan pieces

Whipped Maple Cream 1 can evaporated milk, chilled 1–2 tablespoons maple syrup Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Put 3 tablespoons of butter into 12" cast iron skillet; melt in oven about 3 minutes until starting to brown being careful not to burn. Put remaining butter, eggs, milk, flour, salt, vanilla and spice into blender. Blend about 1 minute. Toss grated sweet potato with sugar. Remove skillet from oven. Swirl to make sure bottom of skillet is covered with butter. Pour egg mixture over the melted butter. Scatter with the sugared sweet potato and cheese. Gently swirl with a fork to incorporate a bit into the batter. Scatter with pecan pieces and return to oven. Bake for 25–30 minutes. (Be sure not to open oven to peek or your baby may “fall” before done.) Serve immediately with syrup or whipped maple cream. For whipped maple cream: In a deep bowl, whip milk into soft peaks. Swirl in syrup.

From Your Kitchen Mounds Cake 1 box devil’s food cake mix 2 cups sugar, divided 24 large marshmallows 1½ cups milk, divided 1 (14 oz.) package shredded coconut 1 stick butter 1½ cups chocolate chips 8 almonds, for garnish Mix and bake cake according to package directions. Combine 1 cup sugar, marshmallows and 1 cup milk in medium sauce pan. Cook over low heat until marshmallows are melted. Stir in coconut (saving some for garnish) and spread on top of warm cake. Mix butter, 1 cup sugar and ½ cup milk in sauce pan, bring to boil and stir in chocolate chips. Spread over coconut mixture. Garnish with remaining coconut and almonds, if desired.

Yield: 4–6 servings

Unless otherwise noted, recipes on this page are from Wendy Perry, a culinary adventurist and blogger, who chats about goodness around NC on her blog at

Search more than 800 recipes, with a new recipe featured every week!

Tara Verna

Yield: 10–12 servings

Recipe courtesy of Louise Gilchrist of Bear Creek, a member of Randolph EMC

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Carolina Kitchen

Pizza Bread Bowl Fondue

Italian Stuffed Portobellos

Hawaiian and Pepperoni Style

Try this fun way to enjoy a simple supper this spring. You can get creative with fondue and dippers, but here are a couple of our favorites. Bread bowls ½ teaspoon garlic powder ½ teaspoon onion powder ²⁄₃ cup olive oil 1 prepared round Hawaiian bread 1 prepared loaf of cheese bread Hawaiian Pizza Fondue 2 cups cubed Colby Jack cheese 8 ounces cream cheese, cubed 2 teaspoons cornstarch 1 (8-ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained 6 ounces diced ham Chopped green onion or chives Coconut chips (optional) Dippers: Toasted bread, sliced Canadian bacon, plantain chips, steamed veggies Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Toss cheeses with cornstarch. Stir in pineapple and ham. Fill bread bowls and place on baking sheet. Tent with foil. Bake 20 minutes. Remove foil and lay cubed bread pieces around bowls. Bake another 8–10 minutes. Garnish with onion and coconut.

Send Us Your Recipes

Add ½ teaspoon each of garlic and onion powder to ²⁄₃ cup oil. Hollow out bread bowls, making sure not to cut through bottom of the loaves. Brush insides with seasoned oil. Cube and brush the cut-out bread as well. Pepperoni Pizza Fondue 1 (6-ounce) package sliced pepperoni, chopped 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning 1½ cups cubed American cheese 1½ cups cubed mozzarella ½ teaspoon garlic powder 2 teaspoons cornstarch ½ cup grated Parmesan Dippers: Deep fried tortellini and Ravioli, toasted bread, assorted veggies Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Set aside Parmesan, half the pepperoni and half the Italian seasoning. Combine all remaining ingredients and fill bread. Sprinkle with the remaining pepperoni and seasoning. Place bowls on baking sheet. Tent with foil. Bake 20 minutes. Remove foil and lay cubed bread pieces around bowls. Bake another 8–10 minutes. Garnish with Parmesan.

Contributors whose recipes are published will receive $25. We retain reprint rights for all submissions. Recipes submitted are not necessarily entirely original. Include your name, address, phone number (for questions), and the name of your electric cooperative. Mail to: Carolina Country Kitchen, P.O. Box 27306, Raleigh, NC, 27611. Or submit your recipe online at:

Bursting with flavor, a couple of these stuffed portobellos alongside a salad make for a meatless light spring supper. They freeze great, too: Prepare up to baking, wrap tightly and freeze until ready to thaw and cook as directed. 12 large portobello mushrooms ½ cup plus 3 tablespoons olive oil 3–4 cloves fresh garlic, minced 2 cups cooked wild rice blend 1 (10-ounce) package frozen riced broccoli, thawed ½ cup marinated sun dried tomatoes, finely chopped ½ cup raisins 1 (12-ounce) jar roasted red peppers, drained and chopped 1 teaspoon dried oregano 1 teaspoon salt Freshly ground black pepper 1 (4-ounce) package cream cheese ½ cup toasted pine nuts ½ cup julienned fresh basil leaves 1 cup grated Asiago cheese 1 (6-ounce) container feta cheese 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Gently remove stems and scoop gills from mushroom caps. Brush generously with oil and place, gills side down, on a cake cooling rack over a baking pan. Bake for 20 minutes. Heat large skillet to medium high. Sauté garlic in 3 tablespoons of oil for about a minute. Stir in rice, broccoli, tomatoes, raisins, red peppers, oregano, salt and pepper. Cook for 2–3 minutes, stirring frequently. Dollop cream cheese into rice mixture and stir until incorporated. Remove from heat and stir in nuts, basil and Asiago cheese. Divide among the mushroom caps. Return to oven for 20 minutes or until cheese melts. Top with Parmesan and feta and serve immediately. Yield: 6 entrée servings, or 12 as a side dish

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Looking for

Recipes? Find them on page 48.


in Carolina Country is this ?

Send your answer by April 6, with your name, address and the name of your electric cooperative. Online:

By mail: Where in Carolina Country? P.O. Box 27306 Raleigh, NC 27611 Multiple entries from the same person will be disqualified. The winner, chosen at random and announced in our May issue, will receive $25.

March winner

The March “Where Is This” photo by Renee Gannon features the mural known as Cock n’ Bull, located at the corner of Sawmill Road and NC Highway 86 in Cedar Grove, just outside of Hillsborough in Orange County. Deborah Weaver remembers watching the artist bring the mural to life on her daily drive through the intersection. Many readers recall the old Haywood Villines Store and then the Snipes Store the mural is painted on, where you could buy gas, produce and even hoop cheese. The building also once held a restaurant and even a barbershop in the back. A few submissions included the news that the store is again being renovated to hold a store and grill. The winning entry chosen at random from all correct submissions came from Linda Rosemond of Hillsborough, a Piedmont Electric member. Have a roadside gem you’d like to share? Submit a photo, plus a brief description and general location information, at



featured photo

Snow Crystal Cup Spring had “sprung” and the sky “leaked” a snow shower in Randolph County. The dogwood bloom opened just enough to capture a cup full of snow crystals. Carol Purvis, Asheboro A member of Randolph EMC The Featured Photo comes from those who scored an honorable mention from the judges in our 2019 photo contest (“Carolina Country Scenes,” January 2019). See even more Photos of the Week on our website

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We love where we live. That’s why our mission is about more than just providing electricity. It’s about boosting regional economic vitality, supporting job creation and helping our members and communities thrive. Learn more at

Powering and empowering the people and communities we serve.

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Profile for Carolina Country