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February 2020

Harvesting pure, local

Sea Salt page 10

Published by

NC legislators unite to support co-ops page 6

7 steps to energy efficiency page 26

PERIODICAL

Why our readers love where they live —p   age 14 Feb covers.indd 1

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Volume 52, No. 2

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Favorites 4 Viewpoints 6 More Power 18 Carolina People 26 Energy Sense 30 I Remember 32 NC Outdoors 35 Carolina Compass 38 Marketplace 39 Classifieds 40 Carolina Kitchen 42 Where is This? 42 Featured Photo

On the Cover Brian McMahon of Hatteras Saltworks preps a tray of sea salt for the cold smoker. The salt will cold smoke with pecan wood for 6–8 hours to make smoked Pecan Wood Sea Salt. Learn more about NC sea salt on page 10. Photo by Daniel Pullen Photography.

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Sea to Table

Two NC companies are making salt a local commodity.

Experience the Movement along the Civil Rights Trail

NC sites preserve stories from the modern civil rights movement.

Why I Love My Community Our readers share what makes life sweet.

Don’t Feed the Animals

Tips for living with wildlife in your neck of the woods.

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS:

What’s Cooking in Your Kitchen? We are always on the lookout for great recipes from our readers. And we put our money where our mouth is, offering $25 for those published. See page 41 for details.

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Viewpoints

Life Since the Lights Came On An Update from Bolivia

With Laphía community leader Ciriaco Rodriguez

Last spring, 13 volunteer linemen from North Carolina’s electric cooperatives packed up and traveled to Laphía, Bolivia. Their task? Bring electricity to the remote mountain village through the Brighter World Initiative. Over two weeks, they worked with locals to set poles, string lines and wire the local school for lights, changing lives in the agricultural village forever (“Building a Brighter World,” August 2019, page 10). We asked Fernando Ghetti, an NRECA International engineer based in Bolivia, to sit down with 34-yearold bricklayer and Laphía community leader Ciriaco Rodriguez to reflect on how life has changed since the lights came on. Q: How did it feel when your village got power? A: When we were beginning to plant the poles, my companions became cheerful and worked day and night … with much joy and goodwill. I have also felt very happy, along with other colleagues who had never thought they were going to have electricity. [As of] October, 100% of the houses have been connected. The entire population is now happier after fulfilling their dream, seeing light inside their homes. Q: Have appliances been added to homes? Which is a favorite and why? A: Little by little, the inhabitants of Laphía are buying [appliances like] refrigerators, blenders and arc welding machines. For me, the refrigerator [is a favorite] to store things for the children. Also, a cell phone charger now helps to have communication at any time. Q: Does the village have plans to add new services that would not have been possible without electricity? A: Now that there is energy, we are thinking of having bathrooms and showers. We can also operate automatic irrigation systems with a timer. Since there is electricity, the school teacher sometimes repeats lessons

[at the school] at night for some students who [need extra work] in a subject. The teacher makes an effort to teach one hour at night. For us this has been very good.

three families have plans to return to the community. Ten new houses have been built. I believe that the value of the land has increased by at least 50 percent.

Q: What do the children think? A: They are really happy, now that they have light. They turn on their TV, they turn on their radio. Before, they only grazed their sheep and did their homework. Now they think about using computers. They think about making tools — the teacher told them that they have to learn to weld and learn how to manage energy. It is a joy for them.

Q: Volunteer Tommy Brock of Surry-Yadkin EMC asks: ‘Is my dog, Cosmo, okay?’ A: Yes, he keeps taking care of the school as a guard. Now that there are no classes, the puppy is at home — on vacation.

Q: Has anyone moved to the community because of access to electricity? A: Yes, several who went down to [the town of] Tiquipaya to provide better education for their children are now returning and enrolling their children in school, because that way they no longer have to spend on rentals, transportation and recreation for their children. At the moment,

Q: Do you have any message for the teams that came and built the lines? A: Thank you very much to the volunteers who helped us, may the Lord bless you. They have worked hard for us, excellently, and have demonstrated their ability. Seeing this, we want to work as well as they have worked. From my community, always, thank you. We will always remember them. They have left an example for us with their work.

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THIS MONTH:

Keeping It Local Our cover story this month is on a ubiquitous commodity, but one that you may not think could come from our own shores: salt. Also, February is Black History Month, and we’re pleased to highlight important cultural stops along North Carolina’s portion of the Civil Rights Trail, as well as an African American entrepreneur who is working to empower farmers in Eastern NC. —Scott Gates, editor

Winner: September Chetola Resort Sweepstakes Kathy Mullis of West Jefferson, a member of Blue Ridge Energy (pictured, left), was excited to hear she’d been randomly selected as the winner of our September sweepstakes. Kathy received a weekend getaway for two at Chetola Resort in Blowing Rock, including a two-night stay at the Bob Timberlake Inn, a dinner out and some time at the spa. Blue Ridge Energy Ashe District Manager Tasha Rountree presented Kathy with the prize package. “I entered the contest because we drive through Chetola every year to see the Christmas lights,” Kathy says. “We never imagined we’d win! I’m so excited!” Reader photo fan I just wanted to write and tell you how much I loved the January issue. The gallery of photos was just awesome! I loved each one. Made my day! Pamela Selway, Carolina Shores, a member of Brunswick EMC

Railroad safety Our January issue included a photo of a railroad trestle (page 15) from a perspective on the tracks. David Dunderdale of Monroe, an Operation Lifesaver Authorized Volunteer, wrote in to stress that being on train tracks without authorized permission and the proper flagging protection is highly dangerous and considered trespassing. Visit oli.org for more rail safety information. Corrections to our January issue Thank you to Brunswick EMC member John McInerney, who pointed out that our article on the North Carolina Jaycee Burn Center (“Retired Chaplain Embodies the Spirit of the NC Jaycee Burn Center,” page 8) neglected to mention that it is affiliated with the University of North Carolina School of Medicine and located in Chapel Hill. Learn more about electric cooperative contributions to the Burn Center on page 34 of this issue. Contact us Phone: 919-875-3091 Fax: 919-878-3970 Mail: 3400 Sumner Blvd. Raleigh, NC 27616

Web: carolinacountry.com Email: editor@carolinacountry.com

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

(ISSN 0008-6746) (USPS 832800)

Read monthly in more than 700,000 homes Published monthly by

3400 Sumner Blvd., Raleigh, NC 27616 919-875-3091 carolinacountry.com 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 Digital Media Tom Siebrasse Advertising tom@carolinacountry.com 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. 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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More Power

“Supporting the RURAL Act was a simple decision for me  … The RURAL Act is good for co-op members and communities across North Carolina.” —Rep. Greg Murphy

RURAL Act Signed into Law NC congressional delegates stand together to strengthen rural communities

North Carolina’s congressional delegates demonstrated unprecedented unity — and a strong commitment to protecting rural communities and electric co-op members —  in their recent unanimous support of the RURAL Act.

“We thank each of our members of Congress for standing up for rural North Carolina as co-sponsors of the RURAL Act,” said Jay Rouse, director of government affairs for North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives. “It speaks to the merit of the measure that all of our congressional delegates from both sides of the aisle took action to support rural people and communities.” The RURAL Act protects electric co-ops’ ability to accept grant funding to support members and local communities without jeopardizing their tax-exempt status. North Carolina’s 13 U.S. House representatives and both U.S. senators joined others from across the country to ensure the bipartisan success of the Act, which eventually became part of a larger bill signed into law in December. “Supporting the RURAL Act was a simple decision for me,” said Rep. Greg Murphy of N.C.’s third congressional district. “As a member of Congress whose eastern NC district is served largely by eight memberowned electric cooperatives, I was

proud to sponsor legislation that would preserve access to federal disaster recovery and economic development funds. The RURAL Act is good for co-op members and communities across North Carolina.” Beyond providing electricity, electric co-ops are committed to helping members and communities thrive through economic development, innovative energy services and community and education support. Electric cooperatives often work to secure government grants to fund initiatives that benefit local people, businesses and communities, including storm recovery, broadband deployment, renewable energy and economic development. In order to maintain their tax-exempt status, electric cooperatives can receive no more than 15 percent of their income from non-member sources. The RURAL Act corrects unintended consequences of the 2017 federal tax law to ensure that grants are not counted toward that 15 percent. —Lindsey Listrom, North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives

What is the RURAL Act? The RURAL Act, which stands for “Revitalizing Underdeveloped Rural Areas and Lands,” protects more than 900 electric cooperatives throughout the nation from the risk of losing their tax-exempt status when they accept government grants for disaster relief, broadband service and other programs that benefit co-op members. “This package preserves the fundamental nature of the electric cooperative business model and will save electric co-ops tens of millions of dollars each year,” said Jim Matheson, CEO of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA), the trade association representing the nation’s electric co-ops. The bill’s passage fixes a problem created in 2017 when Congress passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which redefined government grants to co-ops as income rather than capital, according to NRECA. That change made it difficult for many co-ops to abide by the 15 percent limit on non-member income to keep their tax-exempt status. The RURAL Act once again exempts grants from being counted as income and is retroactive to the 2018 tax year.

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More Power

New Program Aims to Reduce Farm Energy Costs A new program is providing discounted energy audits to help farmers prioritize energy efficiency projects and access funding for equipment upgrades. The North Carolina Energy Audit Program provides farmers served by electric co-ops an unbiased thirdparty evaluation of their farms’ energy profiles and technology opportunities. The use of electric technology will allow for a decrease in overall energy consumption and will increase productivity on the farm. Each energy audit also includes a detailed inventory of current equipment and an analysis of energy usage by farm activity. “Electric cooperatives were founded by farmers and grew from their hard work and ingenuity. Our prospects for working together in the future are just as significant as our past,” said Diane Huis, senior vice president, Innovation and Business Development for North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives. “This energy audit program is a good example of how electric co-ops are helping identify new ways to reduce carbon footprints, lower operating costs and increase productivity for farms.”

The program will cover 75 percent of the cost of an energy audit that can be used to access funding through U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) programs such as the Rural Energy for America Program, which provides grants up to 25 percent of project costs and loan guarantees up to 75 percent of the project cost. There is no obligation to move forward with projects once an audit report is received. The program is funded by USDA Rural Development and operated by North Carolina Electric Membership Corporation and EnSave, Inc. The North Carolina Energy Audit Program program is offered on a first-come, first-served basis and funding is limited. Contact your electric cooperative or call EnSave at 800-732-1399 for more information or to get started.

Planning for an EV Future

In our January issue, we answered a reader question: What will power new electric vehicles (EVs) in the years ahead? The answer addressed EV adoption in the near- and medium-term (“Electric Vehicles and the Grid,” page 7), but some readers were still left wondering how widespread adoption of EVs would affect the grid in the future. “The number of electric vehicles on the road is forecasted to

grow year-over-year, and electric cooperatives understand the impacts EVs can have on the system and the importance of having adequate resources to meet this growth,” said Evan Fitzgerald, Innovation and Business Development analyst with North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives. “That said, our resource planners — who analyze and plan for future energy needs — predict that already planned power resource

additions will account for that EV growth, even over the long term.” EVs are currently 80% more efficient in how they use energy than gasolinepowered, internal combustion cars. Coupling this with the fact that most cars charge at night, when there is surplus power available, means that the impact of increasing EV adoption on the power grid during peak demand times is expected to be negligible, even over the next 20 years. “As demand for electricity continues to grow in the years ahead, North Carolina’s electric cooperatives are making plans now to meet that growth with a diverse generation portfolio,” Fitzgerald said. “Electric co-ops are committed to doing so through continued investment in lowand zero-emissions resources.” Look for more on how North Carolina’s electric cooperatives are planning for a brighter energy future in upcoming issues of Carolina Country.

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Sea to Table Two NC companies are making salt a local commodity By Debbie Moose Photos by Daniel Pullen Photography unless otherwise indicated

Time for some salty talk — but don’t cover your ears. Sea salt has been made in North Carolina since the Revolutionary War, when the British cut off the colonies’ supply of salt, which was essential for preserving meat. Saltworks were established near Beaufort. Today, small companies are making sea salt from the waters off the coast, plugging into a trend for gourmet salts, which fans value for their mineral content, flavor and texture. There are two ways to get sea salt: boil seawater over high heat to evaporate the liquid and leave the salt behind, or employ the sun for solar evaporation, which takes longer but uses no fuel or electricity. Both Hatteras Saltworks in Buxton, served by Cape Hatteras Electric Cooperative (hatterassaltworks.com), and Sea Love Sea Salt near Wilmington (sealoveseasalt.com)use solar evaporation, where seawater is placed in solar ovens inside greenhouselike structures. Time and the coast’s abundant sunshine do the rest of the work. “Boiling is kind of like cheating. You’re using so many resources that you don’t have to use. And you’re boiling out all the good minerals,” says Amanda Jacobs, owner of Sea Love. “I prefer to do the natural method.”

It also works out better than Amanda’s first attempt at getting sea salt: baking seawater on low heat in her home oven. The salt made the metal walls corrode and peel. Brian McMahon of Hatteras Saltworks goes a step farther off the grid by using recycled wood to build frames for his solar ovens. A former navigator in the Coast Guard and avid surfer, Brian and his wife, Shaena, have long been interested in making salt. “Wherever we’ve lived, we’ve made salt. Nicaragua, the Caribbean. It tastes different and looks different around the world,” he says. “We have the Labrador Current meeting the Gulf Stream off the coast here, and the circulation creates a lot of minerals. We’re sitting on a lot of minerals because of the dynamic.” The solar evaporation process is similar for both companies. First, there’s the matter of getting a lot of seawater — one gallon will produce about 4 ounces of salt. Brian has a pipe

and pump at a spot on the beach that sends the water into a container on his truck, which he drives back to tanks at the saltworks. Amanda scoops water by hand into 5-gallon buckets. The seawater is filtered to remove sand and other impurities, then it goes into the solar ovens under glass. Depending on the weather, it can take three to four weeks for most of the moisture to evaporate. Then, the salt hangs in cheesecloth sacks for a few days to allow it to completely dry. Part of sea salt’s appeal is its flaky texture, and each company leaves it in the coarse state, lightly grinding only to break up excessively large chunks before packaging. Chefs like the texture, and a number of restaurants, bakeries and even breweries around Wilmington use Amanda’s salt. “They use it for the sour Gose beers,” Amanda says. “And One Belle Bakery makes a salt and pepper caramel glazed doughnut.” As for cooking with sea salts, they’re generally used as finishing

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"Wherever we’ve lived, we’ve made salt. Nicaragua, the Caribbean. It tastes different and looks different around the world."

sealoveseasalt.com

carolinacountry.com/extras

Got a savory craving? Try NC sea salt on these recipes: Lavender Sea Salted Marinated Beets from Hatteras Saltworks and Hazelnut Cocoa Brownies from Sea Love.

Right: Amanda Jacobs scrapes salt from an evaporation pool in her salthouse. The salt is made from sea water drawn at Wrightsville Beach.

sealoveseasalt.com

Debbie Moose is a freelance writer and cookbook author in Raleigh whose newest book is “Carolina Catch: Cooking North Carolina Fish and Shellfish from Mountains to Coast.”

Below: Brian McMahon removes a tray of Pecan Wood Sea Salt from a cold smoker made from recycled materials.

sealoveseasalt.com

salts, which are added after a dish is cooked for their flavor or texture, or their flaky appearance. Flavored salts are a quick way to season a dish, and Hatteras Saltworks’ include rosemary, lavender and smoked pecan. “The smoked pecan is good on desserts, ice cream or pretzels. The rosemary is fabulous on a steak right before you serve it,” Brian says. “Lavender is good on white chocolate and some seafood, the lighter fish.” Sea Love’s flavors are rosemary, cracked peppercorn, garlic, truffle, Sriracha and citrus, which is popular for coating the rims of margaritas. Amanda is also a beekeeper, and once a year she makes salted honey, which customers use on a cheese platter or drizzle on sweet potato fries. Flavors are nice, but Brian also enjoys the classic taste of salt from the sea. “We keep it natural,” he says. “Just pure salt.”

carolinacountry.com/extras

Follow the process of making sea salt, from salt house to farmers market, in a video tour of Sea Love with owner Amanda Jacobs. February 2020  | 11

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EXPERIENCE THE MOVEMENT ALONG

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The beginnings of non-violent social change had roots in North Carolina through the actions of high school and college students as well as businesspeople and trailblazers. “These sites are just the beginning of the many stories about the modern civil rights movement in North Carolina that need to be preserved and promoted,” explains Angela Thorpe, director of the North Carolina African American Heritage Commission. Seventh-generation North Carolinian Earl L. Ijames, curator of the North Carolina Museum of History in Raleigh, agrees. “The modern civil rights movement didn’t suddenly appear in a vacuum in the 1950s,” Earl says. “It wasn’t just about black people. It’s a right for everyone to enjoy liberty and the hope that is America. Recognizing these sites helps people understand what went on and their responsibilities today.

Civil Rights Trail By Pamela A. Keene

Greensboro Convention and Visitors Bureau

n the 1950s and ’60s, the civil rights movement teemed in the South from small towns to big cities. Today, many of these sites are commemorated as part of the 15-state U.S. Civil Rights Trail (civilrightstrail.com), including five in North Carolina, factoring significantly in the quest for equal rights for African Americans and social justice.

The

INTERNATIONAL CIVIL RIGHTS MUSEUM 134 South Elm Street, Greensboro 336-274-9199 | sitinmovement.org

On February 1, 1960, four young male students from the Agricultural & Technical College of North Carolina took their seats at the lunch counter in Greensboro’s F.W. Woolworth’s store. They ordered coffee, but were denied service because the store was segregated and they were black. So began more than six months of sit-ins at the store and the impetus of sit-ins across the United States as a peaceful protests for social justice. Today, the store houses the 30,000-square-foot International Civil Rights Museum, with educational exhibits and a gallery.

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DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. MEMORIAL GARDENS 1500 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd, Raleigh | bit.ly/mlk_gardens

The Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Gardens, built in 1989, was the first public park in the U.S. built to honor Dr. King and the Civil Rights Movement. Its centerpiece is a life-sized sculpture of Dr. King and a 12-ton granite water monument. Hayti Heritage Center

HAYTI HERITAGE CENTER 804 Old Fayetteville Street, Durham 919-683-1709 | hayti.org

By the 1950s, Durham developed a thriving black business district. “Parrish Street became known as the Black Wall Street,” Angela says. “It was also home of the Hayti community.” The Hayti Heritage Center, opened in 1975 in the former St. Joseph’s AME Church, is the only original building from that time. It now serves as an educational and cultural enrichment center presenting events, activities and programs supporting African American heritage.

GREEN BOOK EXHIBITS BEGIN TOUR

ESTEY HALL AT SHAW UNIVERSITY 118 E. South St., Raleigh 919-546-8200 | bit.ly/estey-hall

Raleigh’s Shaw University is the birthplace of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). Ella Baker, a 1927 graduate of Shaw University and a close friend of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., helped organize the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. She later returned to Raleigh to help young blacks become more involved in the Civil Rights Movement. She was a driving force from the first SNCC meeting in 1960 at Shaw for the group that would become known for Freedom Rides and black voter registration drives in the South. FEBRUARY ONE MONUMENT Greensboro Convention and Visitors Bureau

Next month, two identical traveling exhibitions will highlight three decades of North Carolina African American history. “’Green Books’ Oasis Spaces: African American Travel in North Carolina, 1936-66”, will spend six weeks in two cities before continuing its journey across the state. On March 6, it will open at the International Civil Rights Center & Museum in Greensboro. The following week, on March 14, the second exhibition begins at the Hayti Heritage Center in Durham. “Extensive research for this project began several years ago and we are proud to share these exhibits with the public,” says Angela Thorpe, director of the North Carolina African American Heritage Commission, which is leading the multi-year project and exhibits. “Thanks to a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Sciences, we have been able to document more than 300 Green Book sites in our state and begin to tell this story.” “The Negro Motorist Green Book” was published from 1936–1966 to help African Americans safely move through “oasis spaces” as they visited family, vacationed, conducted business and followed job opportunities during the early to middle part of the 20th century. Visit aahc.nc.gov/green-book-project to learn more, including future tour dates.

Estey Hall

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Gardens

s

1601 E. Market St., Greensboro 336-334-7500

On the campus of North Carolina A&T University, formerly the Agricultural & Technical College of North Carolina, The February One Monument stands at the university’s Dudley Building. It features the four men who staged the original sit-in at the nearby Woolworth’s. It’s more than 15 feet tall and was dedicated on February 1, 2002. Pamela A. Keene is a freelance journalist who writes for magazines and newspapers across the Southeast and nationally.

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Why I Love My Community Our readers share what makes life sweet

A Beautiful Puzzle

Hood Swamp, just a few miles from Goldsboro, is full of my favorite people who are honest, hardworking and friendly. In our small rural community, combines can be seen in the fields. Cows can be seen grazing in fields. Often deer can be seen late in the afternoon eating corn, wheat or soybeans left in the fields from harvest. Hood Swamp has amazing farmland, laid out like a beautiful puzzle. Our community has a small country store where friends gather to eat a snack and talk about the weather. Hood Swamp Friends Church, built in the 1700s, still has services every Sunday. Like other churches in the community, people gather to worship and often have pot luck dinners serving barbeque or chicken pastry. My community is quiet and peaceful. The only really loud noise that is ever heard is the jets from Seymour Johnson Air Force Base flying over protecting our small community and our great USA. I am proud to call Hood Swamp Community my home.

We asked our readers what makes where they live special — why they’re happy to call it home — and the responses we received did not disappoint. We read all with a smile. These are some favorites. Find more at carolinacountry.com/lovemycommunity.

Raider Pride

I love my community because everyone seems to know each other. There are great views where you can see for miles and miles away, and a plentiful supply of kindness. We come together when a person is in a time of need and always work together for the greater good.

The Friday night lights of Raider Stadium are what I love best about my community. Richmond County is a little different on Friday nights in the fall. No matter if you are an alumni of Richmond Senior or an import to Richmond County, you are expected at Raider Stadium on Fridays to cheer on the green and gold. There are the diehards that are there early and you better be early too, if you want a seat. These young men and their coaches may never realize exactly how important they are to our community but they are the talk of the town the whole week. From the pre-season to the playoffs (a playoff spot is all but guaranteed in these parts), you can find a good conversation about how talented the quarterback is and how many sacks the defense will end up with at the end of the season everywhere in the county. From the breakfast group at Hardee’s, to the local hardware stores, to the Facebook fan pages, or the local pharmacy, you will find that the Raiders are topic of conversation anywhere you go. Raider football brings this community together like nothing else!

Josh Novotny, Sparta A member of Blue Ridge Energy

Joey Bennett, Rockingham A member of Pee Dee Electric

Marlene Parks, Goldsboro, a member of Carteret-Craven Electric Cooperative

Plentiful Kindness

Ships on the Move

Living at the NC coast provides countless opportunities to take photos of beautiful sunrises and sunsets, fishing boats, life at the harbor and marinas — and believe me I do. But one thing that amazes me more than many things and really love are the big containerships making their way through the narrow straits around Southport, Bald Head Island and Caswell Beach. Just incredible how they managed to get a 1,150-foot long ship safely through the area with limited space to spare. Mogens Hermansen, Southport A member of Brunswick EMC

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Adopted ‘Framily’

We long ago encountered “friends are the family you choose” stitched on a pillow in a secondhand store. Our family has called a small North Carolina town home for almost 20 years. Here we have just one other relative. Thus, our Sanford friends have become a treasured extended family. We have dubbed them our “framily.” Our children have countless “aunts,” “uncles,” and “cousins,” who are related by Sanford community bond instead of blood. Our framily stays late to clean up kid birthday parties. They’re a fixture at holiday gatherings. They’re emergency rides when the car is stalled. They’re among the audience when our children perform. They’re at the door with a meal after surgery. They send flowers after a loss. Simply put, they’re there. Like family. One member of our Sanford framily is Patricia Pemberton (pictured below), a surrogate grandmother to our children (and to many others in Sanford). She has dressed like Cat in the Hat to deliver books to our children. She has come by on a rainy Halloween to meet our new rescue kitten. She brings cake to celebrate a starring role. She’s all smiles in a lemon-themed blouse at the kid’s driveway lemonade stand. Like framily. Bianka, Ty, Jude and Cora Stumpf, Sanford, members of Central Electric

The Master’s Work

Out where I come from, Caswell County has the most beautiful skies with unobstructed views. Wide open spaces to enjoy the master creator’s artwork. On any given day, this is what I wake up to. Pink skies with love in the air. Tanya Reavis, Yanceyville, a member of Piedmont Electric

Southern Indulgences

Richmond County knows how to party! That’s what makes it special to me! You all host diverse events: the Seaboard Festival; Rockingham Dragway with motorcycle and car racing plus epic music entertainment; Discovery Place KIDS; Ellerbe Tractor Parade; Cole Auditorium performances; Plaza Jam beach bands; John Coltrane tribute; The Berry Patch, and more. Pee Dee Electric keeps it all functioning, enhancing the fun. I moved here from Yankee Country (Pennsylvania) recently. Friendly neighbors urged this new-to-theSouth resident to indulge in tasting collard green sandwiches, grits, fried chicken done right Dixie style, pimento cheese spread, and sweet potato patties. Thirst got quenched with sweet tea, Pepsi, Coke or Cheerwine. “Try this,” they said. I did: in people’s homes, at church socials, sampling at celebrations. The truth is that I loved some of these experiences. Others I did NOT like. Am I going to tell you which was which? No, Bless Your Heart! All was offered with an enthusiastic, genuine, generous spirit of pride in their chosen place to live and work. Thank You, Richmond County. I am here to stay. I have a lot to learn and explore next year. Kathryn Vetter, Rockingham A member of Pee Dee Electric

The Jewel of Tabor City

The reason I love my community is that we are blessed to have a very special jewel in the heart of our downtown historic district. This jewel is the Ritz Center, which was the very first project that was assigned to me by the Town of Tabor City. Formerly known as the Ritz Movie Theater, and loved by so many in our community, this historic renovation took two years and two months of fundraising and building renovations to complete.

Our businesses and citizens were a huge part of this renovation. Their donations comprised three-fourths of the monies for this project. Their stories and precious memories of the Ritz and why they wanted this building preserved kept me going. This labor of love is now a thriving event center and, as of December 31, 2019, over 21,275 people will have passed through its doors by attending an event. Its beautiful marquee lights up our downtown and shines as a constant reminder of days gone by, and what can be accomplished when a community comes together. Each time I pass by The Ritz, I am reminded of just how special it is. Dianne Ward, Tabor City A member of Brunswick EMC

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Black Cotton

Carolina People

Celebrating the Culture of Cotton Julius Tillery’s advocacy work goes well beyond his family farm By Bridgette A. Lacy

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ulius Tillery, a fifth generation African American farmer in Roanoke Electric Cooperative’s service territory, has claimed cotton as something more than a poor man’s crop. He founded Black Cotton, a décor and accessories company in 2016. It sells raw stalks of homegrown cotton to be displayed in vases, hung as ornaments for special occasions, and even worn as cotton corsages and boutonnieres for high school proms. Julius’ tag line is “Cotton is our culture.” He’s working on changing the narrative of cotton and black farmers. While most of the farm’s fluffy white boll is still sold through a cooperative, he’s carved out a niche of his own. “No one created opportunities in cotton for us, so we have to make value of it,” says the 33-year-old. “I like to beautify it … I like that spirit around us.” While cotton cultivation is historically associated with slavery, Julius chooses to elevate it and celebrate this plant that is woven into the narrative of the South. He’s also promoting the crop for agritourism. People have come from as far as California and Washington to visit his Northampton County office in Garysburg and the family farm in Rich Square. “I’ve had school groups, fashion folks and people attending family reunions want to see my office,” he says. “They want to create things and find their healing in the cotton.” Like many farmers, Julius hustles to make ends meet. He spends about half his week working alongside his father and grandfather on the 125-acre family farm located near the North Carolina and Virginia border. About 75 acres is dedicated to soybeans and 50 to cotton. Julius comes from a line of bricklayers on his mother’s side of the family and farmers on his father’s. He brings together the practical experience of farming as well a formal education. He’s a 2004 graduate of the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics. He then received his bachelor’s in economics in 2008 from UNC-Chapel Hill. Working further afield When he’s not engaged in manual labor on the farm, Julius is handling his advocacy work and teaching. “Julius has always been in the ag community,” says Jamilla Hawkins, senior program manager for Food & Community Development at the NC Rural Center. “We

have worked together with the Conservation Fund. He’s that voice to make sure the farmer’s needs are being advocated. He’s going to make sure that farmer’s perspective is front and center in conversation.” Julius is a member of The Conservation Fund’s Resourceful Communities program, which works to preserve the state’s rural landscape especially in communities that are economically and socially distressed. Tillery assists farmers in increasing their revenue potential by connecting them with new markets all along the food chain. He also serves on the administration council for Southern SARE (Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education). Ebonie Alexander, the executive director of Black Family Land Trust, employs Julius as the NC coordinator for one of the nation’s only conservation land trusts dedicated to the preservation and protection of African American and other historically underserved landowners’ assets. “His entrepreneurial skills help the next generation see career opportunities in farming. It brings back pride in land ownership in the rural South,” she says. He’s also an instructor of Modern Agriculture at Roanoke-Chowan Community College in Ahoskie. “Agriculture is very complex,” Julius explains. “Black farmers are behind. We don’t have the same type of capital access, tractors and combine harvesters. It’s hard for us to keep up in the marketplace … I teach modern approaches to sectors of agriculture that are relevant to people working in or interested in the industry.” Bridgette A. Lacy is a freelance writer and the author of “Sunday Dinner: A Savor the South cookbook” by UNC Press of Chapel Hill.

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Carolina Living

5 Tips to Avoid Wedding Woes Say ‘I do’ to a solid plan

Congratulations on your engagement! Your wedding is one of the most memorable days of your life. To pull off the day of your dreams, it is important to have a well-researched plan in place. Weddings have many moving parts, so couples need to prioritize and prepare for the unexpected. To ensure that your wedding goes as smoothly as possible, keep these tips in mind:

1

Vet your vendors. Couples have to rely on many different vendors — from caterers and transportation companies to florists and venues. Depending on so many different people can leave room for error (just ask the couple whose DJ couldn’t make the reception because he was in jail). Thoroughly research potential vendors, including talking to past customers. Then follow up with them throughout the process.

2

Don’t lose out on your deposits. A wedding is a significant financial investment. To protect against potential losses, couples should use a credit card instead of a check or debit card whenever possible for deposits. In the event something happens, a credit card payment is easier to recoup than cash.

3

Say “yes” to expert help. Planning a wedding is no easy feat. Couples can make the process a lot easier by hiring a wedding planner. These experts will use their experience, resources and talents — such as communication skills, negotiation and problemsolving — to help your dreams become a reality.

4

Dealing with destinations. Destination weddings are on trend as marrying couples seek Instagrammable, unique locations around the world. If you’re taking this route, factor additional money into the budget for unforeseen expenses. Consider hiring a local wedding planner who is familiar with reliable venues

and vendors in the area. Additionally, many destination weddings take place outdoors, and unpredictable weather could roll in at any time. It is important to have a back-up plan when it comes to venues, photographers or any vendor that could face a problem and be unable to provide their contracted services.

5

Invest in peace of mind. Wedding insurance solution providers can help protect your investment with wedding insurance. Investing in wedding insurance, on average, costs less than half of a three-tiered wedding cake. Wedding insurance generally comes in two forms: Wedding Cancellation Insurance. This coverage offers protection if a couple needs to cancel or reschedule their wedding in the event of issues such as severe weather, a sudden illness or venue closure. In 2018, 43 percent of WedSafe’s claims came from the need to cancel or postpone a wedding. For example, the company saw a surge in claims in North Carolina when Hurricane Florence hit, forcing cancellations for weeks following the storm as venues and vendors dealt with the impact to their business. Wedding Liability Insurance. This type of coverage, now required by many venues, helps protect an insured couple if they are held liable for property damage or bodily injury. It can also offer hosts liquor liability to protect against alcohol-related accidents. —Brandpoint

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Carolina Living

1

Make Room for Your Passions Not enough space for your gear? Maximize your garage.

Did you know that more than half of Americans (59%) feel that engaging in hobbies helps relieve stress? This was one finding in a survey of more than 3,000 Americans conducted by Kelton Global. While work and family obligations may prevent many from pursuing their favorite activities, the survey revealed that another obstacle was having enough space to store equipment and supplies needed for hobbies. Whether you love biking, arts and crafts, woodworking or sports, chances are you need easily accessible space to store your gear. Here’s where your garage comes in. The same survey found that three out of four Americans prioritize storage as the leading use for their garage, but that 28% of Americans can’t even fit a car in their garage because of the clutter. What’s the solution? Declutter, and then optimize your space so you can easily access the things you love to do. Here are some smart ways to make the most of your garage: Determine your needs Figure out how much room your vehicles take up, then map out how much floor space you’ll need for any other items, such as a work bench or space to maneuver items you use frequently. Group the items you want to store according to category.

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Optimize your walls Take a good look at all the wall space that’s currently being unused in your garage. Fortunately, there are solutions that don’t involve adding shelving that encroaches on your floor space. For example, the Sports Caddy GearTrack Pack by Gladiator can be installed on the wall. It includes a ball caddy, which holds up to 25 pounds, that you can use for anything from helmets to sleeping bags, bags of potting soil or other bulky items you want kept off the floor. It also has two hooks for heavier sports gear, backpacks and totes. There are many companies these days offering “think out of the box” solutions for storing stuff. Go to your local hardware store or home center to see what is available, and search online for “organization systems” and “customizable storage.”

Foldaway solutions Another versatile option is to use a wall storage product that includes storage shelves and a foldaway work surface. People use the fold-downflat surface to perform tasks such as painting. Look up There’s another area of your garage that is most likely underutilized: the overhead space. To safely use overhead storage space, you’ll need a very secure solution. Be sure to compare the weight for your gear against weight capacity for any product you purchase, and read the customer reviews. Organizing spaces is not everyone’s cup of tea, to be sure. But by using smart solutions that use your garage safely and efficiently, you can make more room for all the things you really like to do. —Brandpoint

1/10/20 12:04 PM

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Carolina Living

Electrical Equipment Word Scramble Electric co-ops use a variety of equipment to make sure you and your family receive safe, reliable electricity. Can you unscramble these terms?

Use these clues, and then doublecheck your answers in the key below. 1. ORNSTAMREFR These can look like large metal cans on top of utility poles or big green boxes on the ground. They are used to reduce the voltage of electricity, making it safe for use in your home. 2. OERPW NSLIE These can hang overhead or be placed underground. They carry electricity from where it’s generated to homes and businesses in your community. 3. OUTASBSNTI This is an electrical facility that contains equipment for controlling the flow of electricity. 4. RCTLECIE ERMTE These devices are typically found outside the home and measure the amount of electricity you use. 5. CBUTKE KTURC Lineworkers use this type of vehicle to reach power lines and poles when making repairs and updates to the electrical system.

Answers: 1. TRANSFORMER 2. POWER LINES 3. SUBSTATION 4. ELECTRIC METER 5. BUCKET TRUCK

February 2020  | 23

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1/13/20 10:30 AM


Wendy Perry

Carolina Living

“Dressed up” pimento cheese can look like Tomato-Pimento Cheese Shortcakes with Black-Peppered Whipped Cream. Find the recipe at carolinacountry.com/carolina-kitchen.

Pimento Cheese, Please

You can dress up or down this ‘duct tape of party foods’

O

ne of the South’s best-kept secrets for years, pimento cheese is catching on with the rest of the country. It’s popping up on modern menus and turning up in gourmet stores across the country. Traditional pimento cheese is pretty simple: Grated cheese (preferably the sharpest cheddar you can find), diced pimentos and mayonnaise. That’s it. However, there’s still room for debate on those three basic ingredients: How coarse to grate the cheese, what kind of mayonnaise and whether it’s OK to substitute roasted red peppers for the pimentos. Additions like hot sauce, cayenne pepper, paprika or cream cheese can all cause arguments. Kathleen Purvis, North Carolina-based food writer and author of two “Savor the South” cookbooks, calls pimento cheese “the duct tape of party foods.” “You can nuke it, spread it, mix it with something else or slap it on a tray surrounded by crackers,” Kathleen says. Folks who are experimenting with it in contemporary kitchens are finding that there really are endless things you can do with it. For example, stir it into hot pasta for a shortcut macaroni and cheese, stir it into cornbread batter before baking, and put it between two flour tortillas to make fast quesadillas. Or try these easy ideas:

Hot cheese dip: To make a southern twist on queso, just bake or microwave a small bowl of pimento cheese. If you want something more substantial, stir in cooked blackeyed peas first. On a biscuit: Try spicy pimento cheese on a warm biscuit. Bojangles’, the chicken and biscuits chain, recently debuted pimento cheese on its Cajun filet biscuit. Fried bites: Take an idea from a popular bar snack. Roll very thick pimento cheese into balls, coat them in flour, then beaten egg and finally in Japanese-style panko crumbs. Freeze them before dropping them in hot oil, so they don’t fall apart before the outside browns. P.C. deviled eggs: Beat the cooked egg yolks with pimento cheese, then pipe it into cooked egg-white halves. Garnish with a small slice of pickled jalapeño if you want. Instant appetizer: Fill frozen phyllo cups with a dab of pepper jelly, top with pimento cheese and bake just until bubbly. Grilled cheese: If you want to elevate a simple hot sandwich, use pimento cheese instead of sliced cheese. If you really want to make it special, spread a little raspberry jam or pepper jelly on the bread before you add the pimento cheese. Yum! —Brandpoint

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1/10/20 1:38 PM


Energy Sense

United Cooperative Service

Your Seven-Step Efficiency Upgrade Checklist Make a plan to get the most out of a home upgrade By Pat Keegan and Brad Thiessen

1

Set goals and constraints. Start by setting your primary goal. Are you looking to save money on your home’s energy bills, make it more comfortable, increase the resale value or help the environment? Then, set a deadline for when you need the project completed. This may affect whether you do some of the work yourself and which contractor you choose. Last but not least, set your budget. How much is it worth to you to live in an energy efficient home? One way to look at this is to review your annual energy bills. If they’re around $2,000 per year, you might ask yourself how much you’d be willing to spend if you could cut that expense in half. Maybe you’d be willing to spend $10,000 to save $1,000 each year? That would be a 10% rate of return on your investment. Or, if your home is drafty and cold, how much are you willing to spend to make it more comfortable?

2

Educate yourself. This step is crucial so you can weigh the costs and benefits of each potential improvement. There are many helpful lists of small and large energy efficiency upgrades available online. There are also some great resources like the Department of Energy, Energy Star® and Consumer Reports. Your electric co-op may have a home energy advisor on staff or available literature that can help.

3

Schedule an energy audit. An energy audit will help you prioritize so you can spend your money on the measures that will bring you the most benefit. And an energy auditor can help in other ways. My neighbors hired a contractor to do some major energy efficiency upgrades. They asked an energy auditor to take a look at the work before they paid for it, and the auditor found it wasn’t even close to the level agreed to in the contract. It took three or four return visits for the contractor to get the work up to the promised level of efficiency. So, the energy auditor saved the day! Ask your electric co-op how to schedule one.

Philips

Making your home more energy efficient can be done by taking one step at a time, or you can take it on all at once as a larger project. Either way, it’s helpful to have a plan in place before you dive in so you don’t end up doing unnecessary work or repeating steps along the way. Here’s a seven-step checklist we’ve compiled to help you get organized.

Inspecting and sealing furnace ducts are high-impact projects best left to the professionals.

4

Plan your projects. Now that you have set your budget and priorities and have a sense of the work and costs involved, make a list of the items you want to include in your energy efficiency upgrades.

5

Are there tasks you can take on yourself? Some work, like caulking windows or adding weather stripping to doors, can easily be done by the homeowner, especially with the help of online tutorials. Other work, like insulating an attic, can be dangerous and may require special equipment or know-how.

6

Identify and select contractors. This can be challenging. You want a contractor who really knows how to do energy efficiency work. And you may need two or more contractors, such as one for your heating system and another for insulation. Maybe you’d like to find one who can do air sealing or duct sealing. In some rural areas, contractors may not specialize in the efficiency measures you are interested in. Are they willing to learn what they don’t know? Be sure to get several quotes if possible, as well as references from past clients. Create and sign a contract with guaranteed work and completion dates, with payments due only as work is completed and inspected.

7

Oversee the work. The quality of the work makes a big difference in the amount of energy savings and added comfort you desire. Keep an eye on the project and don’t be afraid to ask questions—lots of questions. Remember, it’s your home, and you’re the one paying the bills!

This column was co-written by Pat Keegan and Brad Thiessen of Collaborative Efficiency. Visit carolinacountry.com/your-energy for more ideas on energy efficiency.

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Missy McGaw

Mike Carraway

Don’t Feed the Animals

Tips for living with wildlife in your neck of the woods By Donna Campbell Smith

Ask almost anyone if they’ve had wildlife visit their backyard and they will have a story. As we encroach more and more into what was once wilderness, the original residents have had to make do. Most people enjoy seeing wildlife as long as they don’t become a nuisance. Chris Gailey, a Blue Ridge Energy member in Alleghany County, enjoys the abundant wildlife that frequents her farm. The attraction is a creek and pond, plus fruit trees. Chris says the deer are in her yard almost daily. Groundhogs also appreciate the apples and pears when in season. “Many of the deer are so bold that they come up by the house and eat down the hostas in the summer. I am glad that I can provide them an all-you-can-eat salad bar,” she laughs. Chris considers the wildlife that she sees a blessing. “I’ve even seen a Pileated Woodpecker, which was very exciting.” Unfortunately, not everyone has as positive an experience with their

wildlife neighbors. When the critters become a nuisance, causing damage or harm to pets or humans, we want to find ways to discourage or remove them from the property or neighborhood. “There are some general techniques and preventative measures for North Carolina residents to prevent and alleviate issues with wildlife,” explains Falyn Owens, extension wildlife biologist with the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission. “Keep in mind that wild animals are in search of food, water, shelter and safety. Eliminating these attractions on your property can greatly reduce wildlife problems.”

Playing Opossum Christina Craft, a Tideland Electric member in Washington County, had a humorous experience with an opossum. Her large German Shepherd, Major, brought a live opossum into the house one night. The back-porch light wasn’t working, so when she called Major in, she didn’t notice he had something in his mouth until he was at the steps. She told him to drop it, which he did — in the doorway. It first appeared to be a dead opossum. Christina grabbed the broom to scoot it out of the door, but the opossum came alive and ran into the house. She finally, with help from her family, cornered it in the bathroom and ushered it back outdoors.

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1/10/20 3:09 PM


‟Keep in mind that wild ani mals are in search of food, water, shelter and safety. Eliminating these attractio ns on you r proper ty can greatly reduce wildlife problems. ”

Missy McGaw

Missy McGaw

Mike Carraway

According to the commission, preventative measures you can take include these tips:

* Do not feed wildlife. This can

cause animals to lose their natural fear of humans and they will seek out humans for food. Putting out food to attract wild animals is bad for them, and can result in problems for people and pets. Do not throw food scraps out into the yard.

* Do not leave pet food outside.

Remove food bowls when pets are not eating and keep bags of food inside or in a secure container.

* Install secure bird feeders that

exclude non-target species such as squirrels, raccoons and bears. Remove feeders immediately if a bear has been visiting them.

* Close crawl spaces and other

openings under houses, porches and outbuildings. Animals will utilize these spaces to den and raise their young.

prevent animals from burrowing underneath. A line of electric wire strung above fencing can prevent animals from going over the fence. Free-ranging chickens and other small livestock are highly vulnerable to predation by several wildlife species. Beehives in bear county can be protected with electric fencing to prevent damage.

* Keep small pets contained,

leashed or supervised when outside. Domestic pets left alone outside become vulnerable to interactions with wildlife and should not be left to roam the property alone, especially at night.

* Basic hazing (such as making

loud noises or waving arms at encroaching wildlife) should be used to communicate to wild animals that your yard is not a welcome area.

* Communicate with neighbors

about wildlife issues you are experiencing. A local group effort is crucial to remedying issues.

* Trim tree limbs around structures * Not all wildlife encounters are to prevent wild animals from getting access to your house, bird feeders and outbuildings.

* Protect gardens, beehives and

chickens with fencing. Chicken wire, buried underground and then bent in an outward, 90-degree angle for 6–12 inches can

limited to people living in the country. Opossums, raccoons, foxes, deer, coyotes and even beaver have shown up in urban

backyards as we clear more and more land for development. In most cases, if left alone they will move on — unless living gets too easy in the city. The NC Wildlife Commission gives several reasons why feeding is harmful to animals. In addition to losing their fear of humans, it increases populations because the more food the animal eats, the more offspring it likely will have. It also brings animals together in larger than normal numbers, which causes the spread of disease within the species as well as to pets and humans. The food itself can make the animal sick since it is not part of their natural diet. “The best thing you can do to care for the wild animals on your property is to give them habitat, not handouts,” Falyn says. “Naturescaping is a great way to provide the animals with natural sources of food and shelter that will not put them in danger the way a human-provided food source will. You will still be able to enjoy wildlife on your property, but in a way that helps maintain their healthy natural behaviors.” Donna Campbell Smith is a Carolina Country contributing writer who lives in Franklin County.

Have a wildlife problem? If you have a problem with wildlife at your home or business, the NC Wildlife Resources Commission will help you find a solution. Visit ncwildlife.org/have-a-problem or call the NC Wildlife Helpline at 866-318-2401 (weekdays 8 a.m.–5 p.m.).

February 2020  | 29

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1/10/20 3:19 PM


I Remember

Memories and photos from our readers

A Guest with Wings

When one gets old, your mind seems to remember and focus on things that happened many years ago more so than on the more recent things. Maybe it’s because you can’t do as much and have more time to reminisce. Today I was thinking, as I have many times, about a strange and lovely visit our family had when my children were 18, 14 and 4 years old (45 years ago). We were sitting in the den that afternoon when a white dove flew to the door and acted like it wanted in. I opened the door and it came in and lit on the couch as if it belonged there and was used to it. The bird became a regular guest. Such a friendly, loving and calm bird. When one of the children went through the house or outside, it would go with them. It would fly around them and alight on “It [the white dove] sat on my dau ghter the most while watching TV…” their shoulder or hand if they held it out to it. My older son would drive the garden tractor, his favorite pastime, and it would ride on his right shoulder. At night it would sleep on the curtain rod of the Remembering Iwo Jima window behind the couch. Editor’s Note: This month marks 75 years since the Battle of Iwo Jima began. We grew fond of the dove. It sat on my daughter the most while watching TV as you see in the picture. She had In 1941, a neighbor came by the house and asked: “Have a special way with animals. The dove would then go back you heard the news?” We had not, so he said: “Japan has to its chosen sleeping place each night. bombed Pearl Harbor.” I was young (17) and thought After exactly six weeks with us, we were all in the backyard World War II would be over before I would be involved. with it flying back and forward to each of us; it flew up on a How wrong I was! limb of a dogwood tree in the yard for the first time and sat Two years later I was commissioned an Ensign in the a few minutes. Then it flew away, never looking back even Navy and I was on my way. I became the Engineering though we all were talking to it and calling for it to come Officer of USS-LCI (M) 1012. The 1012 was involved in back. Naturally we were sad, but enjoyed its wonderful, the invasion of Iwo Jima. friendly and loving visit. What sweet memories it gave us. Late one day in February 1945, my ship was lying to (ship not moving). We were about one-half mile off shore, in case we were needed. Three of us were in the conning tower watching a rocket being fired by the enemy. The rocket would leave a trail of sparks for half of its travel. By looking at the trajectory you could anticipate where it would explode. Once I saw the sparks were directly vertical, which meant the explosive was coming at us or going away. I said, “Skipper, it is coming our way.” He said, “No, I think it is going away.” Immediately there was a scream in the air and there was no doubt which way it was going. The time between firing and landing was perhaps five seconds. The three of us quickly dropped to the bottom of the conning tower. The explosive landed in the ocean very close by. It shook the ship, but caused no damage. About three days later I saw the American flag, just after it was raised on top of Mount Suribachi. I will forever be grateful to the Marines who raised the flag. It gave everyone a boost in morale. Carl Dowdey, Stanfield

Rosita Jones, Dallas, a member of Rutherford EMC

Destined to be Best Friends I grew up in Charlotte in the ’50s and ’60s. My house was in a quiet neighborhood near Shamrock Gardens Elementary School. My fondest memories were made with my best friend, Kay Bishop. I remember the first time we met like it was yesterday. A family had moved in a few houses from mine.

d t e p g

A b a s a

rs old; Dermott Hollar, 7 yea (Left to right) Betty Mc rs old. yea 7 es, nn ha Jo p Bisho Betty on bicycle; Kay

B

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F I I

1/13/20 3:25 PM


nd,

No Pet Left Behind I remember that moving day in the late 1940s. It’s Saturday morning, and the movers loaded up the truck. I begged and pleaded with my dad to wait for me to find Spot, my cat. He was paying the movers by the hour and wouldn’t wait long for a cat. The van pulls away and I’m crying my eyes out, “Please daddy, please don’t leave my cat!” Besides leaving the family pet, I’m leaving behind the only home I’ve ever known in my nine years, the small town of Belhaven. We’re moving to the country to live with Granddaddy in Ponzer. Times were tough, and Grandma died a few months before. Granddaddy needed someone to look out for him. I cried all the way to Ponzer that day, cried all night and most of the weekend. But Mama kept saying, “Come Monday morning when you go to school on the school bus, you take a box with you and go back to our house and get that cat.” She gave me hope. Hope that I could do something and perhaps find my cat and bring him to our new home in Ponzer. It was a long weekend, but finally Monday arrived. Mama gave me a box with holes cut in it to put the cat in. She also gave me fried chicken left over from Sunday dinner in hopes to entice the cat with. Since I had to wait until lunch time to leave the school grounds to go to our old home, the morning lagged endlessly. Finally, lunch time arrived. I go to our old home with box and chicken in hand. Once there I call for Spot. Spot came running. He’s hungry just like Mama said he’d be (he was used to eating two good meals a day and it had been since Saturday morning when he was fed last.) We were so happy to see each other. Spot gobbled up the chicken. We played and cuddled and we’re both happy, until I tried to put him in that box! After struggling with him for quite some time (remember I’m just nine years old), I finally get Spot in the box and head

Filled with excitement, I jumped on my bike and hoped I would meet a girl my age because I only had a brother. I saw a cute girl my age on her Schwinn bike. Now this is the unique and special sign that I though destined us to become lifetime best friends, we had on the exact same outfit. The blouses had horse appliques embroidered on them with matching purple shorts. I perceived this as a “sign from the Lord,” that Kay was going to be my best friend. This turned out to be true. We did everything together. At age 10, we pricked our fingers and shared a drop of blood. In our minds, we were now officially sisters as well as best friends. For 58 years, we have shared our friendship. We will be there for each other through hard times and the fun. Our friendship is a wonderful blessing. Betty M. Hollar, Bethlehem, a member of EnergyUnited

back to school. Spot was a smart cat! About a half a block down the street, he got out of the box and ran to hide in a bush. “Please come back Spot, please come back,” I cried. About that time, a little boy named Harry came and asked if I needed some help catching the cat and I said, “Yes, please help me.” I even offered him two pennies I had stuck in my penny loafers if he’d help me. He did and I was glad to pay him. With Harry’s help, we captured Spot and put him back in the box, this time tying it securely shut with a rope provided by Harry. I think Spot knew how much I wanted him to come with me and succumbed to the box with no more struggles. All afternoon Spot was in the box beside my desk in the classroom. (Thank you, Ms. Ricks for being such an understanding teacher. This was in the 1940s — with today’s rules and regulations, that wouldn’t be allowed in the schools and no teacher would let you do that.) Time came to catch the school bus back to Ponzer. Bryan, the school bus driver, said I couldn’t bring that box with a cat in it on the bus. I got off the bus and started to walk all the way to Ponzer (10 miles). I guess Bryan felt sorry for me Judi and Spot (about 1947–48) because he relented and let us ride home on the bus. We arrived at our new home in Ponzer. Spot was happy to see my mama too. Spot surveyed his new surroundings and stood up on his hind legs peeking out the window and saw a pig for the first time in his life. He was growling at the sight of this pig because he had never seen anything like that before. He probably thought it was a dog with a strange bark. Life was good there in the country for Spot. He liked roaming in the big yard and fields. I missed my friends in town and found Ponzer in the 1940s to be so very, very isolated. Without Spot in my life, it would have been unbearable. Spot will always reside in a special “spot” in my heart. Judi Raburn, Belhaven, a member of Tideland Electric

Send Us Your Memories We love sharing photos and memories dear to our readers. Submit your photo, plus roughly 200 words that describe it, online or by mail with a self-addressed, stamped envelope if you want it returned (only one entry per household, per month). Include your name, mailing address, phone number or email address, and the name of your electric co-op. We retain reprint rights, and we’ll pay $50 for those we publish.Online: carolinacountry.com/contact U.S. Mail: I Remember, Carolina Country, 3400 Sumner Blvd., Raleigh, NC 27616

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NC Outdoors

Wild About Calls Call collecting can add to the turkey hunting experience Story and photos by Mike Zlotnicki

At first blush, Craig Koefler and Ken Mummert don’t seem cut from the same cloth. Ken, 57, was born in Pennsylvania, lives in Wake Forest and works in printing sales. Craig, 72, was born in Ohio, lives in Raleigh and is retired. But they do share a few common bonds. A love for hunting and fishing in general, and turkey hunting in particular. And, as an offshoot of that, an avid interest in turkey call collecting. I asked Ken how he got interested in call collecting. “I just found that the turkey calls were very interesting at an early age,” Ken says. “My family turkey hunted up in Pennsylvania, and they would use little box calls, or peg and slate calls. It was my first exposure to them and I was just fascinated that you can actually call a turkey with these things. And so I started buying them and ... You know, the goal wasn’t to collect, but eventually I just accumulated enough calls that it started becoming a collection.” Craig took a different path to the same destination. “I got into it because I wasn’t happy with the ‘production calls’ that you could buy in stores,” he explains. “And once I found out about call makers, I found there was a huge community and there was a lot of camaraderie and a lot of sharing of knowledge. That’s how I got into it.” At this point in his hunting career, Ken considers himself “50 percent turkey hunter, 50 percent turkey call collector.” Craig said at one point he was a bigger collector than hunter, but is now more of a hunter than collector. Yelps, putts and purrs For the uninitiated, turkey calls are used in the spring to call male turkeys (aka toms or gobblers) in range of the hunter, who uses the call to sound like a love-sick hen (there are calls that mimic male turkeys, too). Vocalizations include yelps, putts and purrs, among others. The most common types of calls are box calls, slate/friction calls, trumpet calls (in which one employs suction to create sound), push pin and scratch calls. There are also diaphragm mouth calls which are made of latex and plastic, but they are not really collectible. Just like any other type of collecting, one can go just about as deep into it as one wants. At one point Ken had over 1,000 calls in his collection, but he’s “whittled that down” to about 500. Ken also makes and sells his own design of a yelper-type call from local river cane. Craig’s rough estimate is about 650 in his collection. What makes a call valuable? Different things. Scarcity is a main component. Artistic detail can be quite exquisite and add value. Some specialize in certain types of calls, some concentrate on individual makers. Some concentrate

carolinacountry.com/extras

We’d be remiss if we didn’t give Craig (left) and Ken a chance to show off their calls — watch a video of some basic call styles.

on early commercial production calls. There are some “holy grail” calls out there. The Charles Jordan yelper from the turn of the century (late 1800s to early 1900s) is one because there are only about five known to still be in existence. Ken said they are hard to place a value on, and cited “priceless” as a price tag. When asked about a ceiling for collectables, both collectors cited a Neil Cost “Fat Lady” box call that sold for about $25,000. Resources for those interested in call collecting include the Facebook group Turkey Call Trader/Collector (Ken is an administrator for the group). The book “Turkey Calls: An Enduring American Folk Art” by Howard Harlan is considered a top reference book. “I think it’s important that people who have an interest in [call collecting] pursue this, because this is an extension of the heritage of hunting,” Ken says. “I encourage people to research their calls and learn a little bit more about them.” North Carolina’s turkey hunting season lasts five weeks in April and May. Turkey call collecting lasts 12 months. But pursue at your own risk. When asked about his experience, Craig hesitated and said simply, “It’s a disease.” Mike Zlotnicki is associate editor at Wildlife in North Carolina magazine. He lives in Garner with his wife, three daughters and two German shorthaired pointers.

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Carolina Compass

Being Green Thematic art Jan. 27–Feb. 23, Hillsborough

February Events MOUNTAINS Downtown Abbey Exhibition Show costumes, recreated sets Through April 17, Asheville 800-411-3812 biltmore.com

Groundhog Day

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Musical about romance Feb 7-March 1, Asheville 828-254-1320 ashevilletheatre.org

Black History Month Series Feb. 1, Fayettevillle 910-323-1776 truetoyourselfnc.com

Bluegrass, country, gospel Feb. 22, Liberty 336-524-6822 thelibertyshowcasetheater.com

Nashville Songwriters

Fossil Fair

Stories shared, hits performed Feb. 7, Durham 919-680-2787 dpacnc.com

Displays, mine for gemstones Feb. 22, Gastonia 704-866-6900 bit.ly/fos-fair

Little Texas

Donna Summer Musical

Modern country-rock Feb. 8, Liberty 336-524-6822 thelibertyshowcase.com

About disco dance icon Feb. 25–March 1, Durham 919-680-2787 dpacnc.com

Carolina Alpaca Celebration

Stephen Freeman

Selfies, fiber products Feb. 15–16, Concord 704-920-3976 carolinaalpacacelebration.com

Elvis tribute artist Feb. 29, Liberty 336-524-6822 thelibertyshowcasetheater.com

PIEDMONT Being Green

Greta’s weather prediction Feb. 2, Chimney Rock 800-277-9611 chimneyrockpark.com

Thematic art Jan. 27–Feb. 23, Hillsborough 919-732-5001 hillsboroughgallery.com

Burnsville Wedding Expo

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Florists, other vendors Feb. 15, Burnsville 828-682-7209 burnsvilletowncenter.com

Trinity Irish Dance Company

A musical about artists following their dreams Jan. 28–Feb. 2, Durham 919-680-2787 dpacnc.com

Agility in action Feb. 22, Boone 800-841-2787 theschaefercenter.org

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

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Burnsville Wedding Expo Florists, other vendors Feb. 15, Burnsville

February 2020  | 35

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Carolina Compass

Know Before You Go

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

COAST Carolina Chocolate Festival Demonstrations, tastings Feb. 1–2, Morehead City 252-393-2011 carolinachocolatefestival.com

Eastern Carolina Unnatural Resources Fair Reusing items competitions Feb. 7–9, Greenville 252-355-1039 unnaturalresources.org

Brown Bag Gam Lectures Includes maritime love stories Feb. 7, 13, 20, Beaufort 252-504-7740 ncmaritimemuseumbeaufort.com

Power Plant Program Learn about Navy turbines, generators Feb. 8, Wilmington 910-399-9100 battleshipnc.com

Rescue Men: The Pea Island Lifesavers Documentary about black lifesaving crew Feb. 11, Beaufort 252-504-7740 ncmaritimemuseumbeaufort.com

Author Lecture On native coastal plants in Carolinas Feb. 12, Morehead City 252-726-2170 mjwolff@ec.rr.com

Heart of the Sea Display, presentation on beloved whale Feb. 14, Beaufort 252-504-7740 maritime@ncdcr.gov

Struggles for Freedom Presentation on Southern African American schoolteachers Feb. 18, Southport 910-477-5151 katy.menne@ncdcr.gov

Disney’s Frozen, Jr. Story of sisterly acceptance Feb. 21–March 8, New Bern 252-633-3318 rivertowneplayers.org

Hatteras Village Waterfowl Festival

Eastern North Carolina Boat Show Feb. 28–March 1, Greenville

Artists, live raptor show Feb. 21–23, Hatteras 252-986-2579 hatterasonmymind.com

Eastern Carolina Bridal Expo Variety of vendors Feb. 23, Greenville 252-975-1840 easterncarolinabridalexpo.com

Eastern North Carolina Boat Show Feb. 28–March 1, Greenville 252-321-7671 encboatsale.com

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Barbara Lica Jazz vocalist, songwriter Feb. 14, Oriental 252-617-2125 pamlicomusic.org

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Marketplace

Connect with Carolina Country Don’t miss out on your favorite content including the latest from Carolina Kitchen —s  ign up for email updates on our website!

Vacation Rental ATLANTIC BEACH OCEANFRONT CONDO, breathtaking view. 1/BD, 1½ /BA, $100.00. 816-931-3366.

Real Estate WE BUY NORTH CAROLINA LAND-Cash paid quickly. Farmland, timberland, hunting land. Any size. No lots in developments. Local buyer, have cash, looking for long term investment, recreation and conservation. For quickest offer and closing: www.nclandbuyers.com or 910-239-8929 WANTED: SELF STORAGE FACILITIES under 100 units. We pay cash and can close in 30 days or less. Text Sue: 704-221-1698.

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For Sale

“CAROLINA COUNTRY REFLECTIONS” More than 200 photographs showing life in rural North Carolina before 1970. Each picture has a story. Hardcover, coffee table book, 160 pages. Only $15 (includes tax and shipping). Send payment to “Reflections,” Carolina Country, PO Box 27306, Raleigh, NC 27611. Or buy online at carolinacountry.com. A BOOK OF COLLECTED “YOU KNOW YOU’RE FROM CAROLINA COUNTRY IF…” submissions from Carolina Country magazine readers. You know you’re from Carolina country if you say “Laud ham mercy!” 96 pages, illustrated, 4 by 5½ inches. Only $7 per book (includes shipping and tax). Send payment to “You Know,” Carolina Country, PO Box 27306, Raleigh, NC 27611. Or buy with a credit card at our secure online site at carolinacountry.com.

Miscellaneous CASH PAID FOR OLD FISHING LURES–Call Rick Hutton 704-695-4917 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. 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: carolinacountry.com/classifieds

HEIRLOOM SEEDS for your garden.Free catalog. Call 828-389-2642 or wright Seedworthy. 31 Wounded Knee Ln. Hayesville, NC 28904 seedworthy@gmail.com Website seedworthy.org

February 2020  | 39

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Carolina Kitchen

Country Ham and Pierogi Benedict With red eye sauce

Try this country twist on a classic breakfast or brunch. 4 poached eggs (see below) 1 box (12-count) cheese pierogis 4 tablespoons butter 2 tablespoons oil 12 ounces country ham, cut into strips 2 teaspoons cornstarch ½ cup black coffee ½ cup milk Black pepper Chopped chives

Chicken Breakfast Sausage Pull out your cast iron skillet for this one to get a nice little “crunch” on the patties. Making sausage to suit your own taste is really easy to do, as is making a big batch since you can freeze the patties and use as needed. Sub ground pork if you like, but we love the moistness from using ground chicken. 1½ pounds ground chicken (dark/ white mix) 1 small onion, finely minced (about ¾ cup) 3 tablespoons dried parsley 1 tablespoon dried sage 1 teaspoon ground ginger 1 teaspoon (or more!) crushed red pepper 1 teaspoon ground black pepper ¾ teaspoon salt 4 tablespoons maple syrup, optional* Combine all ingredients, except syrup, and mix well, forming 12 patties. Heat skillet to medium and add just enough oil to coat. Fry about 12–15 minutes, turning once, until the centers are cooked through. *If you’d like to go the maple route, include 4 tablespoons of maple syrup in your mix. Note that the patties with the syrup will brown more due to the sugar content. Yield: 1 dozen patties

Heat skillet to medium. Sauté pierogis in butter per package instructions. Set aside and keep warm. Add oil to drippings and sauté ham for 4–5 minutes until tender, making sure not to overcook. Remove ham with slotted spoon. In a separate bowl, whisk cornstarch into coffee to make a slurry. Pour into pan drippings and deglaze skillet. Whisk in milk and pepper; heat sauce until it reaches gravy consistency. If too thick, add a bit more milk. Divide pierogis onto four plates. Top with strips of country ham and a poached egg. Drizzle with gravy and garnish with chopped chives. Yield: 4 servings

How to poach eggs

Eggs can be poached up to 24 hours in advance—handy if you are cooking for a crowd. Heat 2–3 inches of water in a pan to a low boil. Break eggs, one at a time, into a custard cup or small bowl. Slide gently into water. Do not stir. Remove with slotted spoon after the whites set and the yolks begin to set, about 3–5 minutes. Drain on paper towels if using immediately. For later use, lower into an ice water bath to chill. Drain and keep refrigerated until needed. Warm in water at serving time.

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Carolina Kitchen

From Your Kitchen

Lace Cookies

Give your valentine a plate of crunchy, sugar-filled bliss! A little bit of batter goes a long way with these delicate, lacy cookies. You may want to halve the recipe. 1 egg 1 cup melted butter 3 cups brown sugar 2 cups quick oats 1 teaspoon vanilla ½ cup finely chopped nuts (we used pecans) Pinch of salt ½ cup melted white chocolate (optional)

Whole Grain Nutty Lemon Ricotta Pancakes With blueberry maple syrup

Dress up a winter’s breakfast with the bright lemony flavor of these wholesome pancakes—great for brunch or supper too! Serve the blueberry syrup warm, alongside the pancakes.

¾ cup old-fashioned oats ¾ cup whole wheat flour 1 tablespoon baking soda 1 teaspoon baking powder 1 teaspoon salt 1 cup buttermilk 1 cup ricotta cheese ¼ cup coconut oil

Blueberry Maple Syrup 1 pint blueberries 1 stick butter ¾ cup blueberry jelly

1 egg 1 egg white ¼ cup honey 1 teaspoon almond extract ¼ cup chopped, blanched almonds ¼ cup chopped walnuts Zest and juice of 2 small lemons.

½ cup maple syrup Pinch salt

Lightly oil nonstick skillet and preheat to medium. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl. In another bowl, add buttermilk, cheese, oil, egg, egg white, honey and extract. Mix until smooth. Combine dry and wet ingredients. Fold in nuts, zest and juice. Ladle ⅓ cup of batter onto the hot skillet and cook the pancakes for 2–4 minutes per side or until brown. To make the syrup, sauté blueberries in butter over medium heat until tender. Add jelly, syrup and salt. Continue heating until syrup consistency. Can be stored in refrigerator for about 1 week. Yield: About 1 dozen pancakes and about 2 cups of syrup

Unless otherwise noted, recipes on these pages are from Wendy Perry, a culinary adventurist and blogger, who chats about goodness around NC on her blog at WendysHomeEconomics.com.

carolinacountry.com/recipes We take food seriously. Search more than 800 recipes by name or ingredient, with a new recipe featured every week!

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. Mix ingredients as listed. Drop scant teaspoons of batter about 2 inches apart. Bake for approximately 7 minutes. Let cool on baking sheet before removing. To add the heart decorations, heat the white chocolate in an open bowl in the microwave for 30 seconds and stir. Continue this process until melted. Scoop the melted chocolate into a plastic baggie and snip one of the corners. Pipe hearts onto the cooled cookies. Let sit 10 minutes or until the chocolate hardens. Yield: 100 cookies 

Recipe courtesy of Amy H. Anderson of Boonville, a member of Surry-Yadkin Electric

Send Us Your Recipes

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: carolinacountry.com/myrecipe.

February 2020  | 41

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where

N w

in Carolina Country is this ?

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

carolinacountry.com/where

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 March issue, will receive $25.

January winner

The January “Where Is This” photo by Michael Smith features a Taylor School House, a one-room school located on West Pleasant Hill Road near Pink Hill in southern Lenoir County. Smith noted that the school was built between 1905-1906 and welcomed students in grades first through sixth until 1926. The winning entry chosen at random from all correct submissions came from Barry Malpass of Deep Run, a Tri-County EMC member. Have a roadside gem you’d like to share? Submit a photo, plus a brief description and general location information, at carolinacountry.com/where.

scenes

CAROLINA COUNTRY

featured photo

A Mirror, Mirror on the Earth

Mother nature’s mirror reflects the perfect evening sky. This is Umstead Park Lake on a cold evening. The golden hour here has been a source of inspiration for countless poems. Sameer Potdar, Creedmoor, a member of Wake Electric

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Submit your photos at carolinacountry.com/photos

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Profile for Carolina Country

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