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ditor’s Note

If ever there were a time to savor a drink of cool water, to delight in a long shower, to love an oyster, it is now. The beautiful clean water which has given us those things and more is our treasure. But as I write this, we teeter at the tipping point.

Photo by David Walters

This is the moment when our gulf coast may be forever changed; we could lose jobs, a whole industry, tourism, wildlife and sea creatures. In short, three of the poorest states in the country, Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana, are once again lethally threatened –and this time, it’s not a natural catastrophe, but a disaster of human negligence. The BP oil spill in the Gulf has turned our excitement about bringing you some good news about water into a sense of foreboding: have we seen the best days, the most beautiful beaches, the cleanest water? In the Longleaf region, we are particularly blessed with pure water which we may take for granted, but it is as dear as myrrh in many parts of the world. We can only hope that we are not too late in the realization that water is a precious commodity which we must care for. As we search for ways to preserve our own plenty, we must also find ways to share our technological skills with those thirsty nations around the world, so poor in natural resources that their hope of survival is desperately parched. In this issue’s variety of stories, we offer many ways to think about water - some science, some history, some humor. I won’t take you through them all here – be surprised as you thumb through the pages. I hope you can enjoy the stories at the same time you think about the centrality of clean water to our lives and to the life of the planet. By the time you read this, there may be better news from the Gulf. Meantime, this little poem of Mary Oliver has a sweet and sobering message, not just for today, but for all the days to come: What is the vitality and necessity of clean water? Ask the man who is ill, who is lifting his lips to the cup. Ask the forest.

Josephine E. Ayers Editor-in-Chief

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F eatures 12

What is Water? By Ashley Stewart

Anniston physician, Ashley Stewart, offers a scientific and personal insight to water, the source of life.


Tug O’ Water By Hardy H. Jackson

Only Alabama historian and regular Longleaf Style contributor Hardy Jackson can paint a picture of the water wars between Alabama and Georgia and make it interesting and educational.



Water Changes Everything By John Fleming

When John Fleming was asked by Birmingham-based Neverthirst to travel to Sudan in pursuit of water, he had no idea the journey would be so refreshing. Learn more in this story and his sidebar story about Birmingham-based Neverthirst.


SIFAT: Clean Water Runs Through It By Mary Elosie H. Leake

Lineville, Alabama doesn’t seem like the appropriate place to learn about clean water in third world countries, but Mary Eloise H. Leake shares what she learned about the work of Servants in Faith and Technology (SIFAT).


On The Cover:

Photo by Daniel Phillips Kidu-Makaraka, Sudan

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Cuisine & Spirits Purity in a Bottle

by Pat Kettles Pat Kettles offers a historical look at bottled water. From the curative of world ailments to the simple taste of pure refreshment, water has been luring seekers to its bottle since 1872.


Testing the Waters by Laura Hunter While a lot has been written about the impact of Katrina, the information is often overwhelming. Laura Hunter narrows in on one New Orleans family that was forced to test their strength when Katrina came to town.




Handel’s Water Music by Mike Stedham Maybe it was a crazy idea, but this music was designed to be heard above river sounds.



Sloane Bibb by Lisa Berryhill Sloane Bibb is a Gen-Y artist who loves making the art he can’t really define. He tells Lisa Berryhill it’s “Textural, found objects, assemblage, folk, heavy Southern influence…”


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Gin Phillips

by Lisa Berryhill Birmingham-based author Gin Phillips talks to Lisa Berryhill about her first novel “The Well and the Mine” and her love of characters.



Scenic River Trail by Jennifer Kornegay With the direction of Anniston resident Fred Couch & Charlie Doster, The Scenic River Trail officially opened in 2008. The network of rivers is the longest such trail contained in a single state in the country

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Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 

ew to Longleaf

Photo by Josh Moates/Kim Box Photography


Laura Hunter Raised in the Alabama hill country, Laura Hunter now lives outside Northport, Alabama. Her short fiction appears in anthologies Belles’ Letters and Climbing Mt. Cheaha. Her magazine publications include ALALITCOM, Crave Magazine, Explorations, Marrs Field Journal and Birmingham Arts Journal. A nonfiction article will appear in Motif 2: Chance, 2010. She has poetry in Beyond Doggerel and Ordinary and Sacred as Blood. Her writings reflect the perseverance of the downtrodden, those Alabamians who refuse to give up, even against extreme odds.

Daniel Phillips

 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

Jennifer Stewart Kornegay has been writing professionally for over 10 years. A graduate of the University of Alabama, she was most recently the editor of Montgomery Living magazine, the monthly city/lifestyle publication in Montgomery, Alabama, a position she held for five years. Her articles have appeared in Southern Lady magazine, Alabama Journey magazine, Southern Living magazine, TIDE magazine, Stratos magazine, the Central Alabama Business Journal, Gulfscapes magazine and The Montgomery Advertiser to name a few. She lives, and writes, in Montgomery, Alabama with her husband, Scott, and her orange cat.

Daniel Phillips is an aspiring Documentary Photographer who offers a window into the life struggles of peoples who are often forgotten or ignored by the US news media. Daniel has lived in South and Central America and has worked in Venezuela, Honduras, Ecuador, Guatemala, Germany, Kenya, Uganda, South Sudan, Indonesia and others for more than a decade.

Richard Curtin

Ashley Hawkins Stewart is a native of Gadsden, Alabama. After completing medical school and general surgery residency at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, she joined Northeast Alabama Surgical Associates in Anniston.  She and her husband Mel live in Oxford with their three sons, Jay, Wilson, and Gus. Outside of a very active lifestyle, she is a lifelong lover of art.

Richard Curtin is a General Surgeon practicing in Anniston, Alabama. A native of Washington D.C., he has been an Anniston resident since 1976. His interest in nature photography began in grade school. He has concentrated mainly on bird photography. A recent photograph was selected for the 2010 NANPA Expressions publication. A variety of his photographs are on display at the McClellan Medical Mall.

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etters to the editor

Volume 5, No. 2 Summer 2010

Dear Mom/Editor:

Dear Editor,

I read your magazine stories about Outward Bound and I have a few things to add. First, I want to say that lady from Outward Bound who spoke about the solo days is WRONG! They sent us out on solo with only some trail mix, water, and fruit (I did sneak in a few candy bars and one bag of chips – but this was for three days out in the WILDERNESS!) All of us on solo did help each other – we were near enough to hear if anyone needed help. When I rolled into a hole in my sleep and woke up to find myself stuck under a fallen tree, another OBer showed up to pull me out. Out there in the Maine wilderness, I was a little worried about bears, foxes, snakes, whatever, but it was beautiful by the lake. I wrote in my journal that the water was so still it was almost like it wasn’t breathing. A lot of things were scary – jumping off a tower, being alone – but I learned a lot about building teamwork. I guess I would do it again. But I would DEFINITELY sneak a few more candy bars! Thanks for sending me to Outward Bound!

We look forward to the fascinating stories and beautiful layout of each Longleaf magazine. The high quality of the publication makes it a perfect fit for us to advertise downtown to potential investors. Our Historic Downtown Anniston brand and the Longleaf brand complement one another, and we’re always glad to have our events advertised in the Longleaf calendar. Thank you for giving us a platform to encourage your readers to “Explore the Possibilities in Historic Downtown Anniston”. Sincerely,   Betsy Bean Executive Director Spirit of Anniston

Signed, Margaret Ayers Anniston

Thank you for writing and for your feedback. Hearing from readers is very important to us, so send your comments to: Longleaf Style PO Box 189, Anniston AL 36202; Email, find us on Facebook or comment on

Consolidated Publishing Co. H. Brandt Ayers, Chairman and Publisher P.A. Sanguinetti, President Ed Fowler, VP for Operations Robert Jackson, VP for Sales

Please include your name, address, email and telephone number. Editors reserve the right to edit letters and comments for length, clarity and style.

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Contributing Writers Lisa Berryhill John Fleming Laura Hunter Hardy H. Jackson Jennifer Stewart Kornegay Pat Kettles Ashley Stewart Contributing Photographers Richard Curtin Trent Penny Daniel Phillips Patrick Stokesberry



Longleaf Style Josephine E. Ayers, Editor-in-Chief Theresa Shadrix, Managing Editor Patrick Stokesberry, Art Director Kristy Farmer, Editorial Assistant Heather Anthony, Graphics Designer Ashley Bass, Graphics Designer Benita Duff, Graphics Designer Les Johnson, Graphics Designer Dollie Robinson, Advertising Manager Dennis Dunn, Circulation Director

Address correspondence to: Longleaf Style P.O. Box 189 Anniston, AL 36202 Editorial queries: (256) 235-3539 Advertising: (256) 235-9222 Subscriptions: (256) 235-9253 Copyright 2010 The Consolidated Publishing Company Printed in USA. All rights reserved.











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Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 11



e Curious

What is

water? 104.5˚


By Ashley Stewart

Water covers 71% of the surface of the Earth. It is ubiquitous in our poems, songs, and dreams. It makes up about 4/5 of my body and 72% of my husband’s. I have stood in awe of the ocean, cursed the rain, and savored a bath. Water is all around me, and it is me. But, what is water? On the face of it, the answer is less than poetic. Its chemical name is dihydrogen oxide—also known in chemistry circles as the universal solvent. It is the most common chemical on Earth. Make no mistake, though: this chemical is exceptional. In order to understand just how extraordinary this molecule is, please indulge a crash course in organic chemistry. An element is a nucleus of protons (positive charge) and neutrons (no charge) that is surrounded by an equal number of electrons (negative charge). The electrons are arranged in pairs (more stable in terms of chemistry) in a sort of orbit around the nucleus. The smallest, closest orbit holds a single pair of electrons. The next level has the capacity to hold four 104.5˚ pair, or eight additional electrons. The third orbit holds sixteen electrons, and so on. Just like a magnet, particles of the same charge repel one another. Therefore, in the second orbit, assuming all electron slots are full, the four pairs naturally form a quadrahedron, which looks something like a teepee:

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Oxygen has eight protons and eight electrons. Two electrons occupy the first orbit, leaving six for the second orbit. The most stable configuration for oxygen, then, is to have two pairs of electrons and two single electrons in that orbit, like this:

Conveniently, hydrogen has one proton and one electron. If two hydrogen electrons fill the empty slots in the oxygen’s second orbit, the result is water. Now—here is where the peculiarities come in. Hydrogen is a small molecule, but it balances out the charge in the electron pair. This allows for two things to happen: The two unopposed electron pairs are stronger in terms of charge, and they push the two hydrogens together. In a perfect quadrahedron, the angle between each electron pair is 109.4 5 degrees, but in water, the angle is 104.5 degrees. Also, the much larger oxygen molecule tends to pull the negative charges toward itself, with the end result being a

negative charge at the oxygen end, and a positive charge at the hydrogen end. What we end up with is a V-shaped molecule with one end slightly positively charged, and the other negatively charged, like this:



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So what? So, water, the chemical, behaves far differently than expected. The charged ends cause water molecules to hold on to one another even when heat is added. In other words, it absorbs heat and remains a liquid—with one molecule bound to the other--before becoming steam, and returning the heat to its surroundings. And when it is very cold, where other chemicals become more and more dense, the v shape of the charged water molecule naturally forms a matrix. The spaces between cause ice to actually be lighter than the cold liquid! Unlike any other chemical, water is at its most dense at 4 degrees Celsius, and expands considerably and becomes lighter weight at temperatures below that. These modest peculiarities of this little molecule are the basis of all life. Water vapor in the atmosphere absorbs heat, and keeps the surface of the earth within a relatively narrow range of temperatures. In our little cocoon of water, we have flourished in every crevice of the place, all thanks to the fact that we have been gently warmed by a sun that would otherwise have incinerated us. And that singular fact is the very reason that life exists on this planet! Then, consider the matrix that is ice. Since the light ice floats to the top, leaving the water below at 4 degrees, the aquatic world can continue to exist underneath. It is, in effect, insulation that allows life to go on. And the vibrant cycle does go on, robust in an environment with a constant and predictable temperature, made possible by the protection of this anomalous little molecule. Finally, the positive and negative charge of water readily associates with other molecules that carry a charge. Proteins, sugars, and salts are surrounded by our little friend. Floating around in a solution of water, they are allowed to interact with one another. The delicate dance of carbon and nitrogen and hydrogen and the occasional sulfur, buoyed by the ubiquitous and versatile water, is life. Step back from it, and it is no longer a diagram, but it is my giggling children, and my new orchid, and the tadpoles squirming in the stream behind the house. It is the good taste of my coffee in the morning, and the splash on my face at night. It is life, and it is good. And when I think about this peculiar little molecule, with its angles slightly askew, I know for a fact that what it is, in truth, is God’s perfect design. Ashley Stewart is a general Surgeon in Anniston.

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TUG O’ WATER By Hardy H. Jackson

And a river went out of Eden to water the garden. Genesis 3:10

For over twenty years Alabama, Georgia, and Florida have been arguing over how the three states should share the Chattahoochee River. That argument promises to expand to include the Coosa and even the Tallapoosa rivers. If some Georgia legislators have their way, the Tennessee River might come into the picture as well. It is a mess. It is a war. And the fight is over how much water can Georgia take from these rivers without hurting folks downstream. In 1956, the Buford Dam on the Chattahoochee, northeast of Atlanta, was completed and Lake Lanier was created. The purpose of this was to generate hydroelectric power and provide flood control. The dam and lake would be supervised

by the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers. It was a federal facility. That is about all on which the three sides can agree. Shortly after the reservoir filled, municipalities near the lake, including the city of Atlanta began withdrawing water for drink and washing and flushing and all, even though when the dam was being built Atlanta resisted helping with the cost Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 15

because it said it had enough water. Those doing the withdrawing Lanier. Alabama, especially the nuclear power plant, needs water say that this was authorized as an “incidental” use. Alabama and from Lake Lanier. Florida and Apalachicola Bay need water from Florida say it wasn’t. We’ll come back to that in a minute. Lake Lanier. The years passed and Atlanta grew. More significantly, metro Seeing the problem, the states started talking about water Atlanta grew. Thousands of people, thirsty people, moved into sharing. Well, not quite. Actually the states started talking about North Fulton County, Cobb County, and Gwinnett County, and talking about sharing. And then not talking. And posturing in the most of them were watered by Lake Lanier. press. And getting nothing done. Meanwhile, downstream, Then, in the fall and winter of 2007, Alabama was building as well, the rains that usually fill the lake and and among the industries needswell the river didn’t come, and the ing Chattahoochee water was need for both drinking water for the a nuclear power plant near the metro area and a downstream flow for Alabama-Florida line. Florida Alabama and Florida became critical. was interested in the water from It was at this point that one Georgia Lanier for another reason. As the legislator proposed moving the state Norman Maclean, Chattahoochee enters the state it line north, into Tennessee, where he A River Runs Through It (1976) joins with the Flint River to form claimed it should have been all along. the Apalachicola River that feeds This would give his state access to the bay that is a seafood parawater from the Tennessee River and dise. Without sufficient freshwater the oysters and other molall its problems would be solved. Not surprisingly, Tennessee lusks (some of them on the endangered list) could not survive wouldn’t go along. Meanwhile other “interested parties” – lakeand the state’s seafood industry would be crippled. front landowners, marina operators, downriver municipalities, So there you have it. and agricultural interests – were voicing their concern and threatGeorgia, especially metro Atlanta, needs water from Lake ening to get involved.

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Now at the same time, almost as if it were in a parallel universe, lawsuits filed by the states were working their way through the court system. What could not be solved by negotiation, the sides reasoned, would have to be resolved through litigation. The only problem with litigation is that in the end, somebody loses, and that is what happened to Georgia. In July, 2009, a federal judge selected to resolve the controversy, ruled that Congress never authorized the use of Lake Lanier for drinking water. And if that were not enough to crush Georgia’s hopes, he gave the states three years to come up with a water sharing agreement or metro Atlanta would have to reduce its withdrawals to 1970s levels. This would leave the region with only about 25 percent of the water it needs and cost Georgia businesses some $26 billion annually. If that happened, Georgia argued, the state would be forced to apply for federal disaster relief. Vowing to take the matter all the way to the U. S. Supreme Court if necessary, Georgia appealed the decision. At the same time, faced with what was described as a “draconian� deadline, the Peach State called for negotiations to reach a solution before the judge’s order went into effect. Alabama and Florida, their position strengthened, agreed to come to the table. Meanwhile, Georgia talked about tapping Lake Allatona as a water source for the region, but that lake, like Lanier, was not created to supply drinking water, and since the water it holds eventually flows into the Coosa River and into Alabama, any withdrawal by Georgia would be challenged. Then the rains came. The fall and winter of 2009 and 2010 were among the wettest on record. The lakes and rivers were full. There was even flooding. And the sense of urgency lessened. So the problem remains. And will remain until the Supreme Court rules, or the states agree, or the metro Atlanta faucets run dry and the “City Too Busy To Hate� will have to find another slogan. Which it will be is anyone’s guess. Hardy H. Jackson can find the funny side of almost any subject.

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Everything By John Fleming

Photos by Daniel Phillips

The shimmering spray reaches into the sky like a west-Texas oil gusher, finds its apex, and drifts across the parched ground. At the height of a boiling hot day, in the glare of a midday sun, an outbreak of giddiness overtakes the assembly of women and young children. Now they have clean water. The journey to this day has been long and hard; the lives of maybe 500 people in this village and the surrounding countryside are forever changed: no more long treks to get water to bathe in, to wash clothes in, to cook with and to drink.

Above: A well drilling crew punches a hole some 150 feet down at a spot called Kidu-Makaraka, Sudan. Left: A splash of clean well water pours over the bottle, which contains the murky water villagers would walk for miles to obtain.

A few miles down a dusty dirt road from this collection of huts, is a footpath leading to a low spot in a patch of verdant underbrush, surrounded by a parched landscape. Here, in the quiet of the shade, is a puddle of water the size of a long-bed pickup, its surface cool and still, the color of Milk of Magnesia. “This is the only water we have for miles around here,” said Jennifer Knight, a local schoolteacher. “When the dry season arrives, even this will be gone and people will have to walk even farther to fetch water.” Kassazo-Kadu’s lack of water is typical of not only this part of southern Sudan, but also for a great many of the Earth’s people. Indeed, the United Nations Children’s Fund estimates that one in six people worldwide, or some 1.1 billion, lack access to safe drinking water, while the World Health Organization says nearly 4,000 children die each day from waterborne diseases. These are the kinds of statistics that have led many working in the international aid community to the conclusion that effective development work can begin only after people acquire clean water. Evidence of an effort to bring water to those who need it, is a short ride away in a late-model Toyota pickup or a half-day’s walk under a boiling sun. Just to the east of the ancient slave-trading post of Lui, is a well-drilling crew punching a hole some 150 feet down at a spot called Kidu-Makaraka. On this day, people come out of a cluster of huts and the surrounding bush in anticipation of what might be. The workers from the Swedish-based International Aid Services (IAS), have told them that if water is to come to this place, it will be this day. Janty Madena, lingers in the shadow of a banana tree with her three small children watching the workers struggling with the big drilling machine. For her, the promise

Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 19

of water is not only good news for the village; it also means a promise of a better life for her. In the rainy season, she explains, she goes to a stream a mile or so away to get water. That is a disruption to the daily routine, she says, but nothing like what happens when the rains stop. “In the dry season,” she said, “we have to go about five miles to get water. Even then we have to boil it. It is very dirty.” She motions to her kids clustered around her, as well as the others who have wandered up, and explains that in the dry season getting them bathed and keeping them clean and keeping them healthy is a major undertaking. Yes, she says, having a well right here, one that runs clear with clean water, would vastly improve life for the people in this corner of Sudan. The work at Kidu-Makaraka was going well, said the IAS foreman on the job, Yoasa Kwaje, a wiry man full of energy and an intimate knowledge of Sudan’s sub-surface. He has done this many times before, so is in the position to predict that something interesting will happen soon. “Sometimes we spend four or five days putting a well in, it all depends on the soil formation,” he says, pulling out a tattered book logging detailed descriptions of every few feet of dirt lifted from the hole before him. “We should be there pretty soon with this one,” he said. And indeed he turns out to be right. Half an hour later, the IAS crew “breaks water.” Workers dance in the shower of bright water and shouts

of joy come from the children gathered around. The celebration extends beyond this spot to about halfway between here and Kassazo-Kadu. Here, not far from a rickety school building, a shiny new India Mark II pump, with a long handle even kids can make cooperate, is about to be put to work. A bamboo fence protects freshly laid concrete surrounding the new pump from a platoon of curious children eager to work the long handle, eager to see the life-changing liquid rise to the top. A man named Charles Banya, the school’s administrator, explains the hardships for having to walk several miles every day to get water. “There is a lot of suffering, especially for our children,” he said. “At least now, things might get better.” He is nearly drowned out by the screams of laughter broken only by children’s song that accompanies a group of visitors who have stopped by to have a look at the new, not quite-ready-to-pump, well. Small hands reach out and demand to be shaken, smiles cascade across every face. The joy is nothing less than electrifying. This is something more than a celebration; it is an announcement of the passing of one way of life and the embracing of another. Water changes everything. John Fleming is the Editor-at-Large of The Anniston Star. He has extensive reporting experience in Africa

Workers dance in the shower of bright, clean water at Kidu-Makaraka, Sudan. Before this new well, the women and children in the village would have to walk for miles to get water. 20 Longleaf Style Summer 2010





Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 21

Neverthirst By John Fleming

Photos by Daniel Phillips

Mark Whitehead hovers in a rare spot of shade beside a dirt airstrip near this Sudanese market town surveying the now familiar landscape around him. Twisted underbrush below a think green canopy of trees, a red dirt road stretching into the distance, children everywhere playing beneath a withering sun. It is hot, it is dry and the dust is everywhere. It is also the wet season, a time of the year when the streams still run, when the rivers do not dwindle to mudchoked soggy paths, when children only have to walk a mile or so to fetch water. As he glances up from a notebook, he looks across a clearing, past a cluster of visitors and dignitaries waiting to catch a bush plane to Uganda, to three young girls walking single file, with plastic containers full of water balanced on their heads. They are heavy, the blue bucket, the green one and the large yellow jerry can carried by the bigger girl in the middle. Yet they manage a smile as they pass the assembled at the airstrip, smiles that no doubt belie the long difficult daily trip they have to travel to the source of this water. And making that journey easier for these girls and others not only in southern Sudan but also in other parts of the world is why Whitehead has come from his Birmingham Alabama home to this place. “Everything starts there,” Mark Whitehead says when he’s talking about water. Without it, he explained, there is poor hygiene, which leads to poor health, which leads to lots of deaths. He knows what he’s talking about. It’s been his life for the past couple of years as a founder of Birmingham-based Neverthirst, a nonprofit dedicated to bringing clean water to

22 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

Village children awaiting their turn at the new well.

desperately poor places in the world such as this. “Clean water changes everything,” he said. “It prevents a lot of waterborne disease, frees up a lot of time that women and children spend walking anywhere from five to six miles to fetch dirty water.” In the last two years, Whitehead, Forrest Walden, and Spencer Sutton, the other founders of Neverthirst, have catapulted a

general idea of helping others into the very specific focus of bringing clean drinking water to remote villages. Since April 2008, when the first Neverthirst well was drilled in the village of Witto, some 30 miles from here, the group has succeeded in putting down 11 wells in Sudan and 21 in India. In a span of two weeks in early 2010, Neverthirst received a commitment to fund 100


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wells in India, a development that will bring about aid and development work and their clean water to some 40,000 people. intersection with religion are sprinkled with Well drilling may sound like an easy busi- references to sustainability, broad change ness, but try carrying it out in this part of and social justice. David Platt’s urging his Africa and you’ll begin to see how difficult parishioners to go out into the world and it can be. Importing the parts, arranging help others was, Mark Whitehead says, for the drilling equipment, finding spare “ideas we were not used to hearing. But parts, even getting to some remote villages, really it was a return to radicalism, to the can be daunting. So, from the beginning kind of radicalism that Jesus first taught.” Whitehead, Walden, and Sutton wanted There is, he says, a lot of foundation in the their approach to be as simple and effecBible for working beyond charity. He’ll cite tive as possible. Their research led them to you passages from the Gospel of John to strategic partnerships with other aid groups already operating in the areas, groups that had already settled on a low-maintenance, deep-water pump called the India Mark II. Partnering especially has allowed Neverthirst to leverage money raised, mostly in Alabama. Working with the Swedish organization International Aid Services (IAS), for example, Whitehead and the others found they could cut the cost of drilling a well in half. “IAS is already on the ground,” said Whitehead. “They have the crew, the well-drilling equipment and the expertise. For every $5,000 we raise, they match it and drill a well. Together we’re making twice the impact.” The journey that has led Whitehead to stand beside this desolate airstrip started with his desire to help others, a longing that springs from his deep faith. He, Walden, and Sutton have long been devout, regular A bamboo fence shades the newly installed pump at attendees at The Church at Brook Kidu-Makaraka, Sudan Hills, a large Baptist-affiliated congregation in Birmingham, the same conand the books of James and Romans as well gregation that has gotten behind the most as Psalm 67:1-2 —“May God be gracious to recent effort to build 100 wells in India. But us and bless us and make his face to shine something was ignited in all three of them upon us, that thy way may be known upon when, in 2006, a young new pastor named earth, thy saving power among all nations.” David Platt begin to speak to his congregaOne of Whitehead’s partners, Spencer Suttion about its responsibilities to those less ton, who now lives in India, says the potenfortunate. “That first time I heard David tial impact of Neverthirst and other groups speak,” said Whitehead, “I think he was 28. trying to bring clean water to that nation is And the way he gave his sermon the way immense. “India has approximately 120 milhe spoke to us, it was like I was hearing the lion people living without access to clean Gospel for the first time.” Now this kind of water,” he wrote in a recent email. “This ministering to others, Mark Whitehead will year almost 400,000 children will die there tell you, is not charity, this is bringing about because of that.” He went on to say he and lasting change. Conversations with him the others are passionate about serving the

24 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

poor in India. Some 900 million of India’s 1.1 billion people, he said, live on less than $2 a day. He also echoes Whitehead about the importance of clean water. “You can have NO development without clean water,” he wrote. “Without clean water, women spend hours each day collecting water instead of contributing to the well being of their home or community – children become ill and cannot attend school ... children also spend hours each day collecting dirty water. So there’s another reason they cannot attend school – without education, they will more than likely be kept in this cycle of poverty.” It is, he continued, “an endless cycle of sickness, lack of education and lack of community contribution. So Mark was right – forget development without clean water.” Forrest Walden feels the same. He explained that when we first went to Sudan the situation seemed hopeless and overwhelming. “We talked for months about what we could do and what we should focus on to bring about the most change,” he wrote in an email. He wrote that he and the others wanted to build a school for a group of displaced or find a way to help a local hospital. “However,” he continued, “we kept coming back to clean water as the primary thing they needed before any of the other things would even matter.” For Mark Whitehead, it all became pretty simple when he arrived in Sudan a couple of years ago for the first time. After landing at this same airstrip, he looked around and saw the suffering and needs around him and knew where he was going to put his energy. “Being a true Christian follower, how can you come here and not respond?” he asked. “We as individuals and the church as a body have a responsibility to relieve human suffering.” And that is something, he argues, we have gotten away from in recent years in this country. “For far too long,” he said, “the church in the United States has been focused on itself.” Watching the three girls with the containers on their heads walk past in a line, he said, “It’s time we start making a difference for others.” John Fleming visited Sudan as part of a Neverthirst delegation.

Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 25

SIFAT Clean Water Runs Through It By Mary Eloise H. Leake Photos courtesy of SIFAT

“More people die from unsafe water than from all forms of violence, including war,” United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon stated on World Water Day, March 22, 2010.

26 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

At least 1.8 million children under five years old die every year from water-related diseases, or one every 20 seconds. United Nations Environment Program, World Water Day, March 22, 2010

Near a small finger creek along the western edge of Randolph County, a trail winds up and down around loblolly pines, oaks and maples. Follow this trail through the rural Alabama forest, and you will find a microcosm of the Developing World. Arriving at Servants in Faith and Technology’s (SIFAT) Global Village, you encounter recreations of homes from diverse cultures. A Bolivian hut like those in the Andes is circular, made of chunky stacked stones to keep in heat. The airy Liberian domicile, made of bamboo, is also round. The Liberian culture fosters a belief that evil spirits live in corners. Other dwellings are from Ecuador, Guatemala, the Philippines, Nepal and Uganda. SIFAT, a nonprofit Christian organization, created the village to help children and adults experience other cultures. It is only one facet of the organization’s far-reaching vision. A working laboratory, SIFAT programs promote sustainable health, education and relief work internationally. SIFAT graduates go into underdeveloped regions and empower local residents, providing leadership in long-term solutions.

SIFAT’s origin

Why Lineville, Alabama?

Ken and Sarah Corson began SIFAT 31 years ago after they lived for 15 years in very poor areas of Latin America, from the Bolivian jungles to Costa Rica’s urban slums. “When I was 12 years old,” their daughter Kathy Bryson says, “we were living in a Bolivian village in a bamboo hut with a dirt floor. Everyone, including us, had to bathe, wash clothes and drink from the river. But if we didn’t boil the water, we got sick.” Dehydration caused by simple diarrhea results from drinking unclean water. “Diarrhea is one of the top two killers of children globally. I saw this. I saw so many children under the age of five buried because of drinking unclean water. So I grew up wanting to make a difference.” With degrees in both public health and Hispanic studies, she is SIFAT’s international training director. “My parents felt led to come back and start this training center to help people understand different ways to purify water, as well as to learn other technologies to supply basic needs,” Kathy adds.

Kathy’s brother, Tom, SIFAT’s executive director, picks up the story as he ambles across a wood-slat swinging bridge spanning the creek. Since their mother was from Wedowee, he says, the family returned there and established SIFAT in 1979 at the Wedowee United Methodist Church. In 1982 the organization had the opportunity to purchase a tract of land. “We especially liked it because Mad Indian Creek, descending from Mt. Cheaha, slashes an ‘S’ through it,” says Sarah, “creating two peninsulas.” Tom laughs and adds, “The owner was an avowed atheist.” Ironically, the old codger liked the Corsons so much that he sold his 176 acres to SIFAT at far below market price. In addition to the Global Village, the complex includes an Indian Village, all approved by the Alabama Department of Education for field trips.

“Water, water, everywhere, nor any drop to drink ” Rime of the Ancient Mariner Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Tom Corson in Ecuador with some of the children for whom SIFAT has provided Day Care. The Children were left alone on the streets (or locked in their little rooms) while their parents worked. SIFAT provides day care and food for 1200 very poor children in the slums of Quito, Ecuador. Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 27

Ken Corson gives certificate of appreciation to indigenous Guatemalan instructor, Isabel Cristobal, before she returns home. She has been teaching how to weave beautiful cloth like the blouse she is wearing to children in SIFAT CARES groups for the summer.

Ken Corson demonstrating innovative use for a car battery.

Kathy Bryson with a student from Pakistan and one from India in the outdoor workshop for making fuel efficient cook stoves.

Kathy Bryson is with a student from Ghana and one from Haiti displaying a simple, but much improved rat trap that will catch up to 30 mice a night and a small model of a hand water pump. 28 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

Tom Corson demonstrating how the indigenous peoples of the Andes use the llama to carry their loads to a CARES group of children at SIFAT. With him in the picture is one of the youth leaders.

Sarah Corson Working in the gardens with visiting instructor in weaving, Isabel Cristobal, from Guatemala.

Water purifying processes are numerous, according to Trey Reed, SIFAT’s water specialist. Once you had to lug a 500-pound steel mold plus 30 bags of concrete mix up and down mountains — or across deserts — to build a filtration device. A newer, cheaper plastic apparatus is much lighter but is still sturdy and dependable for many developing countries. Small wells can be dug with available resources. Using a post hole digger and other simple tools they can make, village residents can drill a 200 to 300-foot well in two or three days. With easily obtainable supplies, inhabitants learn to build pump components. An array of different pumps perches like sentinels on the creek bank. Each was made with things on hand in specific global areas. “We’re all about development,” Trey says. “We try not to create dependency.”

Unpolluted Water for Haiti Since the Corsons once ministered in Haiti, the massive January earthquake touched their hearts. Tom and Trey were stymied by the lack of roads on their first trip. But they have returned several times with large water purification kits (often funded by religious groups, businesses, interested people). To qualify for receiving a kit, the people who run orphanages, churches and clinics/hospitals must help install it and learn the process. “If they build the unit and it breaks, they know how to fix it,” Trey says. In today’s high tech world, it’s hard to believe the best – and quickest – way to purify polluted water for 1,000 people a day uses standard salt and a 12-volt car battery charged by a solar panel. Plus, in the simple process of removing the chlorine from the saline solution, a byproduct — bleach — is created, which comes in handy to clean those institutions.

better life. “Our graduates are working in 85 countries today,” Kathy says proudly.

Global Village The village promotes visualization of other cultures, giving insight to those with limited real world experiences. International practicum students assisted in its construction, adding authenticity. Scouts, church youth, and young adult groups participate in SIFAT camps, weekend retreats or overnights, says Jarred Griffin, the “Learn and Serve” coordinator. Stripped of phones and iPods, they live like developing world citizens with no electricity, heat or air conditioning. The smell

How can you get involved? The Anniston Noon Rotary Club donated $3,000 to drill two wells in Ixiamas near the Bolivian Madidi National Park. Word Alive


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Workshops and Practicums Dozens of missionaries, college students and intelligent indigenous leaders, chosen by vested communities from around the globe, attend SIFAT’s hands-on programs, taught by staff plus experts in different fields and cultures. Each must have references and is carefully screened. These two-week workshops and ten-week practicums teach appropriate, relevant technology so participants can educate people to meet basic human needs — clean water, nourishing food, sturdy shelter. With wind, solar and/or waterpower, plus health care and education, communities can seize sustainable opportunities for a

of cooking pervades the village after students pound corn and bake tortillas in cook stoves, which SIFAT designed to use less wood. Students mold squishy red clay into adobe bricks and dig latrines. Green vegetables may be gathered from micro gardens planted in tires. Exhausted from manual chores, visitors sometimes still find sleep difficult in the primitive huts. Some opt for the Lodge or International House accommodations!

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Above & Below: Tom Corson (left) giving tour of the hydroponics greenhouse at SIFAT which mixes growing fish with vegetables in hydroponics.

Tom Corson explaining to staff and visitors how to pull together for maximum power on this simple well drill, powered only by human power. SIFAT uses the drill in a poor area of Bolivia to get water for isolated familesi.

Tom Corson with SIFAT Staff Gardener John Carr giving tour of greenhouse housing aquaculture and hydroponics.

International Outreach recently bought a large water filtration kit. Regions Bank’s eight-passenger jet often transports SIFAT’s people and supplies to Haiti. Members of Engineers Without Borders at Auburn University and the University of Alabama at Birmingham are involved. Auburn will build a training center in Quesimpuco, Bolivia, while UAB and Harbert Construction will erect one in Zambia in Africa. These will place SIFAT closer to those who need easy problemsolving methodology. More practicum scholarship funds are needed, especially for community leaders living in refugee camps who want to return to reestablish villages. SIFAT tours are by appointment, but anyone can shop at its General Store, filled with brightly colored clothing, vessels, jewelry, artwork and crafts from regions in which graduates live. Books include Sarah Corson’s first publication, “Glimpses of God ... in the Lives of the Poor.” In “Shadow of the Andes,” coming out in June, she discusses raising American children in a dirt-floor hut. Woven around practicality — meals cooked over an open fire and walking three miles to get eggs — it reveals a vast difference in cultures as well as the need for SIFAT’S export of knowledge and technology to the developing world. “Instead of giving handouts to the poor, SIFAT helps them find a way to help themselves, thus preserving their dignity, and recognizing that we are partners together working in the Kingdom of God.” Sarah Corson in “Glimpses of God ... in the Eyes of the Poor.” For more information go to Mary Eloise Leake is a freelance writer and frequent contributor to Longleaf Style.

The Doctors and Staff of the Cancer Care Center would like to thank the community for trusting us with your cancer care and in welcoming us to your community. As we now celebrate our first year in Anniston, we look forward to continuing to provide our patients with the most innovative approaches, leading-edge technologies, and the best possible cancer care available. Thank you for your faith and trust in our team. Dr. Charles P. Lattuada, Jr. MD, FACP Medical Oncologist

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Photo by Patrick Stokesberry 32 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

Purity in a Bottle By Pat Kettles

Today’s ubiquitous container of bottled water is not a new phenomenon. One of America’s first bottled waters, Saratoga Springs, debuted in 1872 in the Adirondacks in New York State. This naturally effervescent water was first marketed as a curative for upset stomachs. Many early bottled waters were touted as curatives for a world of ailments. As word spread of these curing waters, resorts developed around springs like Saratoga and France’s Perrier where the rich and famous came to take the “cure.” Taking the “cure” is steeped in history; water was revered and worshipped by the ancients not only as a necessity for survival, but also for its healing and restorative powers. Elaborate Roman baths were constructed near thermal springs for the battle weary who came to recreate and recover in the warm waters. Our modern word Spa is an acronym for the Latin phrase sanus per aquam, health through water. By the nineteenth century numerous spas sprang up in both Europe and in America, but their waters were available only to those with means until clever entrepreneurs hit upon the idea of bottling the water and offering it to the masses. Among the earliest waters bottled for commercial exploitation were Evian and Perrier in France and Saratoga Springs and Maine’s Poland Spring in America. It is likely those taking the “cure” at these sites and those consuming bottled water from these commercially exploited springs saw improvement in some of their

ailments especially if these ailments were the result of water borne maladies. Public water supplies were abominable until the early part of the 20th Century. A bottled water industry thrived during this period especially in larger metropolitan areas where dense populations and poor sanitation disposal made it difficult to protect water supplies. In America bottled water remained the norm until 1913 when chlorination was used to purify Philadelphia’s water supply. Other cities quickly followed suit and potable tap water usurped the bottled water industry driving it almost to extinction. Ironically, it is the life saving addition of chemicals like chlorine that is causing today’s consumers to turn away once again from tap water in favor of fancy bottled waters. If dining in a “fancy-smancy” restaurant, expect to be presented a wine list and a bottled water list. Yes, the H20 list for water, minus any mention of generic tap, perfectly safe for human consumption in most instances. Europe, unlike America, never abandoned bottled water in favor of tap. Waitstaffs have

Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 33

long approached diners questioning water selection by nineties bottled water was touted by fitness gurus and brand inquiring Evian? Perrier? San Pellegrino? That this the medical community as being more healthful and less phenomenon is taking hold in America is likely pay back caloric than other beverages. Others were turning away from Europeans for our having introduced them to Coke. from tap water because of chlorination and purifying Not all bottled waters come from well-known sources. chemicals even though most bottled waters by federal An estimated twenty to forty percent of bottled water on regulation must go through certain purifying applications. the market today comes from municipal sources. One such The Scarbroughs had another advantage. Their business municipal source is Anniswas located in close proximity ton’s Coldwater Springs. to Coldwater Springs, AnnisDoes bottled water taste remarkably Calhoun Countians Wilkes ton’s drinking water source different from tap water? Is it more and Elaine Scarbrough for known for its excellence. The many years owned and operScarbroughs negotiated a pure? Is it better for us? In most ated Southern Bottled Water unique contract with Anniscases the answer is no, unless you’re Company and marketed ton Water Works and Sewer traveling or residing in third world their own brand, Watkopie Board enabling them to pump Springs. They also were purchased spring water from countries. But waters do taste the major supplier for Winn the source for treatment and differently if tasted blindly with Dixie’s private label water. bottling. bottle labels covered from view. Their involvement in bottled Scarbrough’s contract with water was an outgrowth the city in no way diminished of the family’s Anniston Ice & Coal Company, founded Anniston’s remarkable spring water supply that yields in 1928. Wilkes says he and his wife were looking for a some 32,000,000 gallons daily according to Anniston venture that would be less seasonal than the ice business Water Department officials. Even the Anniston Water when they launched Watkopie Springs in 1990. Department capitalized on the bottled water phenomenon The Scarbroughs’ timing was fortuitous. In the early launching its own brand in 1998 under the Coldwa-

34 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

ter Mountain Spring Water label. Though the Scarbroughs later sold their company, Anniston Water Works continued the bottled water venture until the new owners abruptly ceased operation in February 2010. Does bottled water taste remarkably different from tap water? Is it more pure? Is it better for us? In most cases the answer is no, unless you’re traveling or residing in third world countries. But waters do taste differently if tasted blindly with bottle labels covered from view. At such a tasting at the Cloisters in Sea Island Georgia, out of ten waters, I was able to identify only three, Perrier because of its sparkling minerality, Evian because of its softness, and Sea Island tap water because of its sulfuric aroma. All ten waters including Sea Island tap were perfectly potable, but beyond these three, others were indistinguishable. Even if labels are in plain view, they can be confusing. Water labeled spring water must contain water that comes from a naturally flowing underground water source. Bottled water labeled artesian water must come from an underground confined source

that flows from pent up pressure when tapped. Waters labeled purified can come from any source as long as the water is treated and filtered to remove harmful elements. One interesting source encountered recently is Tasmanian Rain All Natural Drinking Water, “from the purest skies on earth,” says the maker. According to the bottler, this rainwater is collected before it ever touches the ground in custom designed catchment facilities located on the island of Tasmania off the coast of southern Australia. Why do I have visions of thousands of 375ml bottles suspended above the earth, mouth open, waiting to be filled? I found this water to be soft, bland and uninspiring, but I don’t suppose water should be inspiring. As much as I eschew pressure from waitstaff to order special water bottlings, I must confess I am a bottled water junkie. Not because I think it is better for me, more pure, or tasty. It is a matter of convenience. Without it, I feel lost. Something akin to not fastening my seat belt. In the fastest growing beverage business in the world, my addiction makes bottled water executives very happy much to the chagrin of environmentalists whose main criticism of the industry - a valid one - is the environmental footprint left by all the plastic water bottles that end up in landfills. Pat Kettles has taken a break from her regular gig as wine guru.


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Testing The Water By Laura Hunter Photos By Trent Penny

August 2005. She shone magnificently from space, a perfect eye surrounded by spinning clouds, soft as spun sugar Carnival candy. The World Meteorological Society named her Katrina, and she blasted the Southern United States. “Katrina” means “one who is pure.” Forget “pure.” In her coming, she brought gifts of hellish magnitude.

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Huge chunks of pavement and concrete pillars are all that is left of the Highway 90 bridge leading out of Bay St. Louis, MS


he satellite image of Hurricane Katrina covered 90,000 miles, an area almost as large as England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales combined. She covered the Gulf of Mexico from Cuba to Florida to Texas and her winds hit 175 miles per hour when she first found land off the Louisiana coast. The 23-foot high surge swept six miles inland through Mississippi. Katrina dropped 62 tornadoes in eight

states and killed more than 2000 people as her winds picked up water from two lakes, Pontchartrain from the east and Borgue from the south, as well as from the Gulf of Mexico. Winds either funneled water backwards into the city of New Orleans via the Intercoastal Canal, or lifted it two stories high and slammed down mile-long levees, flattening 18-foot panels of metal and concrete. What some call the worst natural disaster in United States history may eventually have

cost 150 billion to the economies of Louisiana and Mississippi alone. The things we know are immense and often prevent us from thinking of the small: one person, one family, and Katrina’s cost to them. One woman, Marion Conwell, then 56, is a quiet Southern lady whose pure white hair brushes her chin each time she bows her head to grace the table. This is her story, beginning August 28, 2005.

Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 37

The Conwells believed in levees. They had never run from a hurricane. Marion and her husband, Pat, lived their lives surrounded by mounds of dirt and re-bar in New Orleans, met there, married there, raised their daughter there. With a control canal edging their back yard, they felt as safe as Canaanites inside Jericho. Margaret, Marion’s mother, 80, was a different matter. Mention bad weather, and she stood ready to leave. Pat’s mother Thelma, 78, and her friend Red Satterlee, 82, who has Diabetes 2, will refuse to leave. They always stay. They live in a two-story house in Lakeview, next to Gentilly. Pat’s sister and his nephew will be there. Pat and Marion can spend the night there and come back home to where they have lived for 29 years, 5018 Cardenas in Eastern New Orleans. The option sounds safe enough.

began funneling backwards through the Intercoastal Waterway from Lake Borgne, flooding Eastern New Orleans. A 17th Street Canal levee, at about the same time, began to lean, flooding Lakeview. Twenty minutes later, the back-flowing water topped the floodwalls and levees on both sides of the Industrial Canal. In less than an hour, entire blocks of levees collapsed. Dam-size breaks opened. About 8:30, a mile stretch of floodwall south of Lakefront Airport, next to Lakeview, toppled. Lake Pontchartrain dumped itself into Eastern New Orleans. Marion will not know this until she reads The Times-Picayune weeks later. By 9:45 a.m., the Conwells know something

is horribly wrong. Water invades the house through every crack. Several more 17th Street Canal levees fail. A wall of water the color of soggy grocery sacks pours into Lakeview. Water now rises throughout the first floor faster than Marion can pick things up. Maybe the City shut off pumps. If pumps are off, there is no judging how high the water will rise. With this thought, Marion puts a loaded coffee table on the sofa. She abandons salvation for survival. Wading water inching up her legs, she packs a cooler with sandwich supplies, Vienna sausages, and water. Then behind her, the refrigerator topples. “The first thing that goes is your refrig-

August 28. Reports of flooding in Venetian Isles outside the levee system come in. Marion packs two small bags with clothes, jewelry, her mother’s old coins, a purse and her Bible. Cocoa, her 13-year-old chocolate lab, is too frail for travel. Marion improvises a ladder by pushing a chair next to a metal table against the wall. She puts out several days of food, just a paw and a pull up to the flat patio roof away from any rising water. She sits for a while rubbing her old friend. “See you tomorrow,” she says. She and Pat lock up and leave.

August 29 Pre-dawn hours. Katrina veers east, marching around New Orleans without fanfare or trumpets. Just rain, rising winds. Gentilly. 6:45 a.m. Winds collapse brick walls next door, leaving insulation and studs exposed. A retired engineer, Red does not worry. His generator in the garage provides electricity and time to cook whatever they want. No one realizes this will be their last hot meal for almost 48 hours. Around 9:00 a.m., Marion notices water collecting in the street. She tells Pat who, thinking trash blocked the drain, wades out to clear the opening. Nothing is there. More water rises. Remembering the generator, Pat calls his nephew to help lift it to a table. From inside, Red sees the flooded backyard and freezes. In the sunroom, he stares at brown water as it seeps under the door and around tall windows. Red cannot move. No one knows that, at 6:30 a.m., water

38 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

A member of the National Guard looks over damage with two emergency workers amid piles of rubble at the beach in Bay St. Louis, MS.

An unidentified man walks past the First Baptist Church of Gulfport, MS. The church was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina

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erator. It just floats up and falls over. You’d never think a refrigerator would float, but it will,� says Marion. “In fact, the bottom of Pontchartrain is probably covered with refrigerators washed out from shore homes.� Carpet stretches and bubbles as it pulls itself free. Marion finds a radio. Extra batteries? Thelma had batteries, but she cannot find them. Going with what she has, Marion picks up the radio, its back slides off, and all four batteries plop into water. She tosses the radio on the table atop the now submerged sofa. Water now almost up to Pat’s armpits, Thelma calls for her jewelry. “Go,� Marion says, “but hurry.� Pat enters Thelma’s bedroom. His movements press against heavy water, creating waves that edge toward a bureau. He nears his target. The chest comes alive. Lifting itself off the floor, it tips the jewelry box and dumps its contents. Pat struggles to snatch whatever jewelry he can catch in the murk. The chest floats down the wall, closes the door and settles there, daring Pat to escape. Recognizing real danger, Pat forgets chasing jewelry. He pushes himself, head first, to the door, but the pressure is too strong. The bureau will not budge.

A minimum of 200 pounds of force will be needed to move an empty chest and release a wooden door against this water pressure. Pat needs less than two feet to get out. With water on both sides of the door, he progresses by inches. He calls to his nephew. Together, the nephew pushing, Pat pulling, they crack the door enough for Pat to squeeze through. Having lost its battle, the chest sinks beneath the water. Water rises still. Its pressure so strong, its depth increasing, the six move in slow motion. They opt for upstairs. Pat, with two duffle bags and a garbage bag holding Red’s and Thelma’s medicines, leads the other five up. They reach the first bedroom. Marion stands on the bed, looking out a window, three-feet square, waiting for water to follow them. Next option will be the attic. “What about an ax?� she asks. City safety guides state “Have an ax in the attic.� “Ax or no, it’s too late,� Pat replies. As quickly as water came, just as quickly it stops. Its rise ends on the top step, not two inches below the second floor. From 10:30 a.m. until 3:00 p.m., Marion waits for help. Some boats speed by. None stop. The house rests in at least 12–feet of brackish water. Outside, only roof tops show.


Here and there, dusk-to-dawn globes stick up like dainty garden tea lights. Maps code New Orleans at eight feet below sea level. But levees put New Orleans in a bowl. Levee diagrams show 17.5-foot levees hold Lake Pontchartrain back, while 23-foot levees keep the Mississippi within its United States Army Corps of Engineers boundaries. Confined water, once released, levels. With high floods, New Orleans can lie 14 feet below sea level. Breach key levees, and surrounding waters, swallow the city. In time, a john boat appears with a friend looking for Pat. Not finding Pat at Cardenas, the fireman motors to Lakeview. He sees Marion peering out the upstairs window. He knows a bridge, he says. Though surrounded by water still rising, it is dry now. All agree. Take the chance. Marion’s sister-in-law goes out the window butt first, drops and settles into the boat. Marion is next. She has to drop backwards, about four feet, into a space no wider then 36 inches, without toppling the two out of the boat or missing the boat entirely. Once out the window, she hangs from the window sill. Her legs dangle like a child’s, suspended from monkey bars. She can do this, but reason takes time.








This Dodge Caravan sits at the edge of the beach in Bay St. Louis, MS. The bridge to Highway 90, destroyed by Hurricane Katrina, can be seen in the background.

Once logic wins, she loosens her grip and falls into the boat. There, she sits stone still, defying the boat to dump her out. No more than a hump, Orleans Avenue Canal Bridge is full. People, crowding the span, just four car lengths long and two wide, squeeze together for six more.

Monday, August 29 Nightfall. Moonlight reflects rooftops upside-down. Marion remembers the scene as “fantastic, so surrealistic” the surroundings. “It was astonishingly beautiful. Everything so quiet, except for an occasional passing helicopter.”

Tuesday afternoon Temperatures reach almost 100 degrees. Sixty to 80 people stand, body to body, after more than 24 hours, on the concrete swell. People share whatever they have. Red tries to sleep on ski vests. Thelma sits on the cooler. An elderly couple stands day, night, day, leaning against their walkers. Marion sits, her arms around her legs, head drooping between her thighs. She is so tired, physically tired, emotionally tired. She and Pat share a can of Vienna sausages. People have brought pets, one family with five dogs. None bark. None fight. The animals sense disaster. Nobody whines. The one ruckus occurs when Marion faces reality, guilt, and grief for

having left Cocoa alone. A man has not given water to his dog, which has been without shade all day. She accosts the man and gives the dog her water and then stomps away. She suffers no guilt. The muddy water has too much of Cocoa’s color running through it to arouse shame. One woman begs each boatman who arrives with more people for someone, anyone, to go back. She left through an upstairs window. Her husband stayed downstairs. She denies that her husband can drown, that boatmen can search only for the living. When she has a chance to leave, she doggedly stays. Another boat comes late Tuesday to take refugees to St. Pius Catholic Church. The Conwells go. They wade knee-deep water to the church green, a point of ground about a foot high in a sea held down with sewage stench. Inside they find bathrooms, sleeping mats, and food. Emptying his personal freezer, the Priest cooks whatever he has. Late Wednesday, a boat arrives to transport people to a deportation station. The Conwells go, this time without knowing where. Each can carry one item. Marion chooses her purse. All else, she puts atop a Coke machine and steps out into the dark. Pat carries the medications. “You seem to have a lot of problems,” the driver later quips as Pat boards the bus. Ever the joker, Pat will grin and toss his head toward Thelma and Red. “Yeah, those two!”

A lone bobbing flashlight marks the darkness for the hour-long trip. They arrive at I10, on a spot of dry land. Rows of buses wait under hovering helicopters. Public buses go to the Houston Astrodome where people will live weeks in row upon row of cots, much like the Atlanta rail station scene in Gone with the Wind. This is no movie. These lying about are alive, not actor manipulated dummies. The Conwells board an un-air-conditioned school bus. Down the road, they learn they are being deported to Houma, Louisiana. With water came poverty. Not ball-andchain poverty some are born with, but instantaneous poverty, shattering windows and kicking in doors, leaving nothing behind but four feet of muck. Such poverty attacks from all directions, poverty driven by winds of Katrina.

October. Marion and Pat return to 5018 Cardenas to find ceilings collapsed from nine feet of water, three of which remained inside for two months. Black, green, white molds grow everywhere. Grayish mold covers swollen wooden furniture. Leave a house empty, it withers and dies. Fill it with water, it festers and rots from inside out. Cocoa is gone. Gone is the four-poster bedroom suite Marion sacrificed for. Gone are her piano, her grandmother’s antique sewing machine. Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 41

One tree lives, that and weeds brine could not kill. An ornamental metal porch support sticks out of the roof, pointing in ridicule toward the canal. For two months, they live in a rental car, wandering from place to place, homeless. “It was a strange feeling, but I didn’t feel loss of hope,” Marion says. Pat helps his brother clean his steel-erecting business of four feet of mud. They walk across truck hoods and empty desk drawers of crabs, water snakes, moccasins. Working with his brother, Pat adds a little to the $90 per week they receive from the government.

Christmas Pat and Marion move into a tiny travel trailer behind Pat’s brother in Slidell. They live here for almost a year. Family moves Red from Houma to Baton Rouge for hospitalization, not for his Diabetes 2, rather for inflammation of cellulitis in his legs caused by fire ant stings when he stepped off the Orleans Avenue Canal Bridge to pee. Pat drives Thelma to family in Northport, Alabama. Marion’s mother Margaret receives money from her brother for air fare to Louisville, Kentucky. Katrina’s surge washed her home town, Bay St. Louis, into the Gulf. Margaret had lived in a Jennings’ motel room with her two younger daughters, their husbands, and four grandchildren. Her going means more space for the eight left behind. After Katrina hit on Sunday, Margaret arrived in Louisville on Wednesday. Before the week is out, Margaret has a stroke. Within a few days, she has a brain hemorrhage that requires surgery. For the next 16 months, she will survive on tubes and wires in a semiconscious state, alternating between hospitals and nursing homes. Marion spends those months driving from Louisiana to Mississippi to Alabama to Kentucky. Kentucky will refuse her mother’s Medicaid. Officials argue she lives in Mississippi. Mississippi claims she lives in Kentucky because she is hospitalized there. Marion will try to convince bureaucracy that Margaret Dawson Masters’ home is wherever she is. Bay St. Louis isn’t there.

Louisiana has no nursing homes available, few even open. November 10. Margaret dies. Three daughters bury their mother, an unacknowledged Katrina victim, next to their father in Biloxi National Cemetery two days later. “You start off trying to save everything, but, as time goes by, you are willing to let more and more go.” At that time, she had not lost her mother. Pat and Marion move to Slidell, closer to Biloxi and her parents’ graves. “[New Orleans] could sink, and I could care less.” Marion looks over the top of her glasses and shrugs off the thought. “It may be different tomorrow.” August 29, 2005. The walls of New Orleans

came tumbling down. The Conwells survived, but lost so much. Within a few hours, Katrina’s waters eliminated all their tangible history. Within a few days, the process for ending a mother’s life began, accentuating Katrina’s forte: scatter and destroy families. Marion and Pat Conwell tested Katrina’s waters and found themselves wanting. They survived the depth of her waters, the power of her winds, but she left them empty-handed. So they started over, at step one. Neither questions leaving New Orleans. They have taken their memories and gone. Katrina’s waters washed away any hope of return. Laura Hunter is an author and freelance writer from the Northport, Alabama area.

April 2006. After nine months, Margaret is moved to Mississippi. That day Kentucky acknowledges her Medicaid. Through Marion’s persistence, Margaret is flown by a volunteer to Wiggins, south of Hattiesburg, the closest nursing home bed. Front steps are all that is left of this house about 50 yards from the beach in Bay St. Louis, MS. 42 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

We’re with you in the race of LIFE.

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By Mike Stedham

As far as we know, King George I of England never cruised down the Coosa River listening to Jimmy Buffett on his iPod. But the monarch did understand the universal pleasure of listening to stirring music while enjoying a nice summer boat ride. He also had the power and the money to make it happen. So on the evening of July 17, 1717, the king gathered a few of his closest friends on the royal barge and floated from Whitehall to Chelsea listening to a new piece of music written for the occasion by his old friend George Frederick Handel. Here’s how the local newspaper, The Daily Courant, described the event: 44 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

“A City Company’s Barge was employ’d for the Musick, wherein were 50 instruments of all sorts, who play’d all the Way from Lambeth the finest Symphonies, compos’d express for this Occasion, by Mr. Hendel; which his Majesty liked so well, that he caus’d it to be plaid over three times in going and returning.” It was a three-hour boat ride, according to the newspaper, followed by a lavish supper when the party landed at Chelsea. The orchestra continued to play throughout the meal and all the way back home.

Another contemporary account of the evening, this one from the Prussian ambassador to England, said the instruments on the barge included trumpets, horns, oboes, bassoons, flutes, violins and basses – an entire Baroque orchestra minus the harpsichord, which has never been much of a nautical instrument. Thus was born “Handel’s Water Music,” one of the most enduring pieces of music ever written. It’s a great piece of Baroque traveling music. Handel was a master of strong



Handel was born in Germany but spent much of his life in England. Handel’s music includes many operas and oratorios, including that most famous of all oratorios, The Messiah. He also wrote Water Music; Music for the Royal Fireworks; and works in many other genres.

melodies, and the challenge of making these suites, each containing several individual tunes audible over the river noises caused pieces of music. The exact running order him to orchestrate this work with lots of Handel used in 1717 is lost to history, and brass and woodwinds. the arranging of the pieces remains fluid This isn’t music for quiet solitary conto this day. One charming legend is that templation; it’s in constant motion, just like Handel had the orchestra play the softer the river that moved beneath the musical passages when the music barge drifted close barge at its world to the royal barge, then premiere. It’s music switched over to the that’s made to travel. louder passages when This isn’t music for quiet It was also a big hit. solitary contemplation; it’s they drifted apart. Handel certainly As befits the excitein constant motion, just knew how to please ment of a journey’s like the river that moved the king. After all, beginning, the first the two had known beneath the musical barge suite is particularly each other years lively with a strong at its world premiere. It’s earlier in their native emphasis on the music that’s made to travel. French horns (which Germany when Handel was employed were at that time a by George, who had been Elector of Hanover novelty in England). It’s the longest of before ascending to the English throne. the suites, and some have speculated that Handel also knew how to make the pubHandel used it for the outbound section of lic happy. He had moved to England a few the river journey. years before composing the Water Music, The second suite, which starts with a and he was making a comfortable living spirited allegro movement that goes right writing oratorios that drew large crowds. into a hornpipe, adds more trumpets to the Purely instrumental works didn’t reach mix. The third suite, while keeping the spirit as large an audience in those days as his of the first two, has a slightly more delicate vocal pieces, so it took the rise of public or- sound that features lots of flutes. chestras during the Romantic period for the Orchestras have been recording Handel’s Water Music to become a concert staple. Water Music since the days of wax cylinders, The suites gained even more exposure but the earliest versions were usually based th in the late 20 century as recordings on on re-orchestrations from the late Romantic “period instruments” became popular. period that added lush strings and other Handel’s Water Music is made up of three instruments to the score.

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During the 1970s, however, smaller ensembles were formed featuring “period” instruments that were supposed to sound like their 18th century counterparts. These recordings went back to the original arrangements and feature a lighter, livelier feel – entirely appropriate to the original intent of this music. Handel’s Water Music is most often paired with his other famous “outdoor” work – Music for the Royal Fireworks. This shorter piece was written much later in his career, and had a less auspicious premiere. (One of the pavilions set up for the concert was set aflame by the fireworks.) A more reserved and stately work than the Water Music, the Fire-

works nonetheless shares much of the vigor of the earlier work. Of course, the whole concept of “portable music” was limited to the very rich and very influential for most of the past few centuries. What was the very symbol of decadence for the English monarch in 1717 is now available to anyone with a means of transportation and a CD player. So the Water Music has come full circle and can be heard by the rest of us the way the composer intended – peacefully floating down a river. Now if we can only find somebody to cater that lavish supper… Mike Stedham, Journalism professor at JSU, loves to listen to, and write about all kinds of music.

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Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 47


Define It



By Lisa Berryhill Photos courtesy of the artist

visit to artist Sloane Bibb’s website is a delight. His

way. He takes bits and pieces of life and arranges them to tell

unique work contains iconic images like Krispy King

a story. Exactly what that story is can change according to

Donuts boxes, cutouts of early 20th Century home-

your perspective.

makers in aprons and the King (Elvis that is) presented in a

Bibb says he is quite content to allow people who view his

whimsical and humorous fashion, juxtaposed with automo-

art to come up with their own stories. “When I participate in

bile tags, car parts and old newspaper clippings. They often

art festivals like Kentuck (near Northport, Alabama) and the

include colorful birds—usually a mocking bird—painted by

Arts and Crafts Festival in Fairhope (Alabama), one of the

Bibb. One gets the distinct impression that this artist is having

things I most enjoy doing is standing in the background listen-

a grand time putting together odd elements in a very creative

ing to people talk about what they think the story is behind

48 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

Baseball, mixed media

“People call it contemporary, untraditional folk art, part painting, part collage.” He admits that often when he finishes a painting he finds himself wondering, “Where in the world did that come from?” Acoustic, mixed media Left: Panties, mixed media

individual pieces. It’s amazing the different things people see in my art. They come up with some great stories!” Bibb himself is reluctant to define his art. “I can’t put a name to it. It doesn’t fit in any niche. ” When pressed, his description sounds more like a list of ingredients than a definition. “Textural, found objects, assemblage, folk, heavy Southern influence…” Again, he seems happier to let those who see his work categorize it. “People call it contemporary, untraditional folk art, part painting, part collage.” He admits that often when he finishes a painting he finds himself wondering, “Where in the world did that come from?” Susan Robertson, Director of the Wiregrass Museum of Art in Dothan, Alabama and a former Anniston resident, says that the art world is seeing more young artists like Bibb producing art that reflects a fascination with technology, media and materials. “As

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a group these ‘Gen Y’ artists have greater access to more materials, technology, information, and leisure time. The ‘cut and paste’

Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 49


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nature of the Internet is also influencing ‘Gen Y’ thinkers and creators. Artists such as Bibb reflect this in their work as they grab and assemble often-disparate objects and ideas without regard to any formal context. Young artists are perfectly at ease with this process, feeling no need to ‘label’ their work.”

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Bibb’s 3-D artwork is difficult to capture in photographs. It features themes as diverse as guitars, fish, birds and nests, women and cakes all mounted on wood canvases. Texture is at the heart of it all and, through the years, he has experimented with a number of combinations of elements and tools to develop the signature look and feel of his art. Work like Bibb’s, which incorporates everyday found objects, can look deceptively simple. At festivals or in galleries where his art hangs Bibb will often overhear conversations, usually

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between couples, that go something like this: “Look how much he’s

getting for that painting! We have a lot of

LaKind Gallery in Santa Fe opened earlier

ing, Bibb remains a proud son of Alabama

stuff just like that lying around. You could

this year to very positive reviews. Bibb’s

and the South and he very much wants the

do that yourself.”

art, often featuring quintessential Southern

same for his children. “I enjoyed Santa Fe

themes, thoroughly captivated quite a few

but I can’t imagine raising my kids there.

with a Fine Arts degree with a Graphic

Santa Fe art lovers, a group that includes

Then they wouldn’t be Southerners. I know

Arts focus, Bibb landed a job with CNN in

many Europeans with second homes there.

most people are proud of where they come

Atlanta. He soon found out that big city life

So it shouldn’t be too surprising that the

from and I guess I’m no different.”

and repetitious work was not for him. “I

first piece sold now hangs in Athens, Greece

hated it after about six weeks. I did the little

on the office wall of the president of an

banners that pop up behind the anchors

olive oil company.

After graduating from Auburn University

heads and a lot of maps. I got so sick of

Lisa Berryhill writes about culture in all

Despite his now international follow-

its forms.

making maps, I didn’t ever want to see one again.” He soon landed back in his hometown of Decatur. Now he designs museum exhibits for a firm in Huntsville by day, creating personal art at night. His work has been featured in galleries in Birmingham, Fairhope, Nashville, Tennessee and Santa Fe, New Mexico. Pursuing a career in art was a huge departure for a male in the Bibb family.

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Sloane Bibb comes from a very long line of lawyers, politicians and judges. His father was a judge in Morgan County, Alabama where Sloane grew up. Ancestor William Wyatt Bibb was a member of the first Alabama legislature. Sloane’s grandfather, William “Bill” Bibb, was a prominent judge in Calhoun County for many years. And, surprisingly, it was that same Judge Bibb, Sloane’s Papa, who paid for his six year old grandson’s first art lessons. It could have been the influence of Judge Bibb’s wife, Jean, that led him to encourage young Sloane’s artistic development. “Grandma Jean was an amazing artist. She was partially paralyzed in a car accident when my dad was ten and because of that she had to learn to paint left handed,” Bibb remembers. “She painted

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beautiful portraits that were kind of stark. She’d leave the canvass partially blank, painting only part of a face and maybe a little bit of the clothing. I remember spending many hours in the basement of their home on Coleman Drive destroying her discarded oil paintings.” His one man show, Heart of Dixie, at

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Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 51

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Gin Phillips

A Writer Who Lives in the South...Not a Southern Writer by Lisa Berryhill

54 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

in Phillips loves her characters. She readily admits that, as a writer, plot is secondary to her. “I’m happy to let my characters sit on the sofa and talk all day, but I realize that readers like plot.” Phillips, an attractive blue-eyed blonde, seems to possess an understanding of human nature beyond her years. In her book The Well and the Mine, she promptly plunges her characters—the Moore family—into the middle of a mystery, unveiling the plot in the very first sentence. The pivotal act of her debut novel is an unspeakable one that forever shifts the way her beloved characters view the world. That’s exactly what Phillips wanted to accomplish. “I wanted something to happen, something totally beyond redemption, beyond humanity…something that would evoke no sympathy, only revulsion,” explains Phillips. “Then I wanted to spend the rest of the book unraveling that and watching the characters realize that both this unspeakable act and the woman who committed it are more complex and, ultimately, more understandable than they originally thought.” The Well and the Mine is set in 1931 at the height of the Great Depression in the coal-mining town of Carbon Hill, Alabama. Like most of the men of the town Albert Moore quit elementary school to work in the mine for long hours and short wages. That was long before he married Leta and had a family. Mining is a dangerous way to make a living and the Moores realize that if anything happens to Albert, they might not be able to survive without him. It’s a hardscrabble existence with little time to question the way things are or to wonder how the world works. Then nine-year-old Tess sees a woman throw a baby down the family’s well. “When the baby is thrown down the well it jolts the main characters out of their comfort zone and sends them down new paths. It’s my idea of how a mystery works best, as a way to get deeper into the characters.” When Tess and older sister Virgie set out to find the woman from the well they encounter a world that is far more complicated than either had realized. Both girls are struggling with change. Tess is leaving her childhood and its innocence behind and fourteen-year-old Virgie is looking toward her future, uncertain about the unwritten rules that are part of becoming a woman. Their baby brother Jack is already keenly aware that he could suddenly become the man of the house if Albert doesn’t come home from the mine at the end of the day. Phillips points out that there were no safety nets, such as insurance or unemployment compensation in those days. “If a miner was injured on the job, the wealthy mine owners could decide whether or not to help him and his family. Complete and utter ruin was always within sight. A beam falling on you, a sick

child, a car accident—any one of those situations could unravel your whole life in an instant. I realize that could still happen today, but it’s far less likely.” When asked to compare today’s challenging times with the situation the Moores faced in 1930s Alabama, Phillips notes that during the Great Depression, the economic crisis was so widespread most people felt they were all in the same boat. No one family had any more or any less than the next. That attitude seemed to result in less discontent, at least in retrospect. “I am always amazed at the way my relatives who lived through those hard times speak of them in such glowing terms. They all talk about how much fun it was back then, not the hardships or how little they had.” Phillips, a 1997 graduate of Birmingham Southern College, still lives in Birmingham. Before the publication of her novel, she was a freelance writer for magazines such as American Profile, American Spirit, Platinum and Woman’s World. She grew up in Montgomery but spent many hours with her relatives in Walker County. Her great aunt Clara still lives in the family home in Kansas, Alabama, a small community not far from Carbon Hill. Some of the most enjoyable research Phillips did for her book took place during conversations with her great aunt and her grandmother Virginia. “Some family stories found their way into The Well and the Mine. No baby down the well, thank goodness, but those conversations gave me a concrete place and helped me develop a feel for the time period as well as the details about domestic life, the chores, the clothing the girls wore. It became a kind of oral history.” Phillips takes the threads of these vivid recollections of depression era life and weaves a rich, detailed tapestry of time and place into her novel. She wanted to remain true to the time period and, as she researched coal mine operations, she made the decision not to visit a modern working mine. “Through the years the coal mining industry changed very rapidly with the addition of stricter safety standards and unionization. I didn’t want to want to be influenced by even reading about those changes, the improvements. I did have a few conversations with men who worked in the mines during the 1950s but nothing substantive came from those. Really the most helpful thing I did, besides reading miners’ letters and trade journals from the ‘30s was visiting a living history mining museum in Pennsylvania.” Her great grandfather was a coal miner but she never knew him. “I do know that he was determined that his children would never work in the mines, a sentiment that is echoed in the book by Albert.” Albert Moore’s character also gives voice to an issue that often surfaces in novels about the South in the days after the Civil War but before the Civil Rights movement. He begins to question the notion that people of color were different from him and his white friends.

“When the baby is thrown down the well it jolts the main characters out of their comfort zone and sends them down new paths. It’s my idea of how a mystery works best, as a way to get deeper into the characters.”

Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 55

“The coal mines were one of the only places where black and white men worked side by side. Those miners did brutal, backbreaking work together, rarely seeing the light of day. They knew that each day in the mines could be their last. As I read the in the miners’ letters about the possibility of unions, strikes and their attempts to make their situation better, it became apparent to me that what these men lived through with each other went beyond skin color. If there was an enemy, it was the wealthy mine owners. Men in Albert’s position saw that the issue of whites versus blacks only distracted them from making the important changes.” In the novel Phillips shifts perspectives, using first person accounts of the different family members as the story unfolds. Her use of these different voices and viewpoints adds depth and an authenticity that is so tangible readers can alternately smell the acrid air of the coal mine where Albert works and then taste the sweetness of Leta’s fried peach pies. The characters in The Well and the Mine

emerge as a study in contrasts: strong yet vulnerable, sweetly simple and amazingly complex. The five members of the Moore family are achingly human to the point that the reader, like the author, will miss their company when The Well and the Mine ends. The parents, especially Albert, seem astonished that they’ve managed to raise such beautiful, smart and caring children. And the children are somewhat in awe of their parents and the sacrifices they make so all three of them can have a better life. “With all the characters, family is incredibly important; each one values it above everything else. The Moores have so little control over most of their lives, so little power over things other than their family.” Her work in The Well and the Mine has been compared to the writing of both Harper Lee and Willa Cather, but Gin Phillips is quick to tell you that she never aspired to be classified as a ‘Southern writer’. “It hadn’t really occurred to me that there is such a label. I do love being from the South…I just don’t want my writing to be

confined to subjects I already know well.” Phillips’ next novel is far removed from her roots and concerns a subject totally new to her. Two archaeologists unearth an ancient artifact at a dig in contemporary New Mexico. “It’s part mystery, part love story and part ghost story.” In addition to all the positive reviews and lofty praise for The Well and the Mine, she received a very prestigious award that offers promising new writers both financial and marketing support: the 2009 Barnes and Noble’s “Discover Great New Writers Award” for fiction. The award came with a $10,000 cash prize and a yearlong marketing campaign from the national bookseller. “It is deeply satisfying…thrilling…to see something take shape that came out of your head as if it existed already and you’re just entrusted to tell the story,” Phillips reflects. “It still seems astonishing that people will pay you to tell stories. It’s not a bad way to make a living.” Lisa Berryhill writes about books too.



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June 18&19 The Music Of The Beatles! Legendary Woodstock Performer Abbey Road LIVE! John Sebastian ARTS COUNCIL

Friday June 18, 2010

Saturday June 19, 2010

bbey Road LIVE! rocks the music of the Beatles. The band’s scope includes more than 100 Beatles tunes, from all eras of the Fab Four’s career. The band specializes in complete, startto-finish album performances of masterpieces such as “Abbey 3PBEw i.BHJDBM.ZTUFSZ5PVSwBOEi4HU1FQQFST-POFMZ)FBSUT Club Band�.

ohn Sebastian - Legendary songwriter, Woodstock performer and member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, featuring many hits from his catalog with The Lovin’ Spoonful like “Do You Believe in Magic?�, “Daydream�, “Summer in the City�, “Did You Ever Have to Make Up Your Mind?� and “You Didn’t Have to Be So Nice� as well as great material from his solo career.

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Friday Gates open at 5pm 6pm - Mel Melton & the Wicked Mojos 8pm - Abbey Road LIVE! In addition to all the diverse music, there will also be plenty of other activities for the whole family to enjoy: Live Alabama Animals show and demonstration (Sat. - 2:15pm) Live Birds of Prey show and demonstration (Sat. - 4:15pm) .PPO#PVODFt1BSBDIVUF8BWFTt"SUT$SBGUTt7FOEPSTt'PPE

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for more information call 256.782.8158 or visit us online Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 57

Photos Courtesy of the The Scenic River Trail/Alabama Tourism Department

The Story of The Scenic River Trail By Jennifer Kornegay

This network of rivers is the longest such trail contained in a single state in the country, and it begins at the Georgia state line on the Coosa River. It winds its way south to the Tallapoosa River, then to the Alabama River, crossing nine lakes along the way, and terminating at Ft. Morgan in the Gulf of Mexico. In all, the Trail covers over 1,000 miles of water and is welcoming visitors from across the state and across the country.

58 Longleaf Style Summer 2010


n the last decade, Alabama has gone a little trail crazy, and not without good reason. We’ve got a lot to boast about, including the renowned Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail, the Civil Rights Museum Trail, a wine trail and numerous other non-official trails that commemorate everything from the state’s role in aviation to our haunted history. But then, two years ago, a new trail was created, one that is such a perfect fit for the trail concept, it’s amazing it hadn’t been formed before. The Alabama Scenic River Trail was christened and started “officially” showcasing some of our state’s abundant natural wonders in June 2008. This network of rivers is the longest such trail contained in a single state in the country, and it begins at the Georgia state line on the Coosa River. It winds its way south to the Tallapoosa River, then to the Alabama River, crossing nine lakes along the way, and terminating at Ft. Morgan in the Gulf of Mexico. In all, the Trail covers over 1,000 miles of water and is welcoming visitors from across the state and across the country. But the Trail could have just as easily not come into being. If Fred Couch, current president of the Scenic River Trail’s board of directors, had not nurtured a little seedling idea that entered his mind years before, and convinced others to join him, it might never have amounted to more than a passing thought. An avid canoeist, local paddling instructor and retired jeweler, the Anniston native swears the whole endeavor began quite innocently. “I got into paddling after a raft trip down the Tallapoosa,” Couch said. “That was about 42 years ago.” He then began sharing his paddling passion with others, working as an instructor and even teaching the art and sport at Jacksonville State University for five years. Then, about 10 years ago, Tom Semmes, one of Couch’s regular customers at his jewelry store, asked Couch to lead him on the trip of a lifetime. “He asked me to take him on the 3,000-mile trip taken by explorers Lewis and Clark,” he said. Couch talked Semmes down to a more manageable trip of 155 miles instead, and while on their adventure, they crossed the Cimarron Trail. “I started thinking about Alabama’s trails and thought to myself, ‘We have so many rivers and have natural beauty like this in Alabama. Why don’t we have a river trail?’”

Couch forgot about it once he got home, but five years later, the idea crept back into his mind and slowly started pounding away. “It kept bothering me, so I called the Alabama Tourism Department and just told them what I was thinking about. I figured I’d give them the idea, and they’d run with it, and I’d be done.” But he was far from done. The folks at the Tourism Department did like his idea, and they wanted him to meet with them in Montgomery to really talk about it. “I got a printer friend to print up a small brochure and a map of the rivers I was thinking about to take to the meeting,” Couch said. “A few days after our meeting, I got a call, and the Tourism Department agreed to print the brochure on a much larger scale.” In fact, they printed 25,000 of the brochures and put them in every state welcome center. And then the Tourism Department

put Couch in touch with others around the state who had also expressed interest in a river trail. “In 2006, we all got together, probably 72 of us,” Couch said. “I got up and spoke about my ideas and explained why we needed a river trail.” Charlie Doster, also of Anniston, was there. Couch had taught him to canoe some years earlier, when he was 72 years old. “I got into canoeing to have something to do with my grandkids,” he said. “Fred took me out on Terrapin Creek, and even with the broken hand he had at the time, he taught me all the paddling basics. When I heard him talk at that first meeting about his dream of a river trail, I just got caught up in his enthusiasm. I’ve been at it ever since.” Less than a month later, the ad hoc committee held its first formal meeting. “There were about 25 people then, and that was our core group. We all wanted this and believed Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 59

Courtesy of the The Scenic River Trail/Alabama Tourism Department

we could make it happen,” Couch said. And giving credence to the fairytale notion that believing something hard enough can make it true, 18 months later, in June 2008, The Alabama Scenic River Trail held its grand opening in Montgomery. But the work that went on behind the scenes amounts to far more than mere pixie dust. “One hurdle was to figure out how to get around the dams in the rivers and the Alabama Power dams on the lakes,” Couch said. In this endeavor he had plenty of help. According to Couch, Doster was

instrumental. “Once we had the permissions from Alabama Power it was Charlie, who is in his eighties, who went out with the Alabama Power representative and traipsed through the woods around those dams for months discovering the portage trails we could use. “Many other volunteers pitched in as well. “We would not have this Trail if not for so many people giving their time and talents,” Couch said. “I did not do this alone.” Now the trail has resulted in over $17 million of free publicity for the state, with articles appearing in USA

Today, The New York Times and more. Better still, it gives beginning boaters and old river rats alike an amazingly detailed route to follow for a day trip or an extended run. “We’ve traversed the entire trail and GPS checked every waypoint, every road, every campsite, every put in and take out, and noted it for the Trail map,” Couch said. “I researched the history all the way down the river. We divided the Trail into sections and did a guide book for each.” And the results of all the efforts have been amazing, calling to mind the famous movie line, “If you build it, they will come.” Come they have. “Since the Trail formed, so many people who didn’t realize the natural beauty of our rivers and waterways or how to access them are now getting out there and enjoying them all,” Couch said. “I get two or three emails a week from people who want to come out and do a section of the Trail. I got one from a group of doctors from Georgia who were bringing their whole families to go down the Trail for their Spring Break trip, and one from a couple coming all the way from California. That just delights me; it’s phenomenal.”

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Doster echoed Couch’s sentiments. “I practiced law for over 50 years, and my associations have been extensive, but things have fallen into place for the Trail better and easier than anything I’ve ever been associated with,” he said. While Couch, Doster, the rest of the board and the Trail’s executive director Jim Felder are no doubt pleased with the fruits of their labors, there is more to be done. “Our big challenge now is to get more campsites on the Trail, so there will be one every 10 miles,” Couch said. Both men have their favorite parts of the Trail. “I’ve had my most pleasant experiences on the Trail on the flat water in the delta,” Doster said. “There is such lovely water there.” Couch also likes the southernmost section. “The lower section of the Alabama River near Monroeville has a lot of birds to see, and the Bartram Trail leading into Mobile Bay is really full of wildlife.” Today, thanks to Fred Couch’s initial epiphany, and to the work of all who made the Trail a reality, countless others will be better able to experience the allure of Alabama’s wonderful waters. Jennifer Kornegay is freelance writer living in Montgomery.

Paddle On… By Jennifer Kornegay While the fast-paced thrills of serious whitewater will certainly get your pulse pounding, lazier rivers offer the opportunity to drink in the surrounding scenery with all five senses. Watch a water bug skate the mirror surface, hear the cacophonic symphony of insects and frogs, smell the heady scent of honeysuckle in bloom. Of all the water pursuits I’ve enjoyed, none does more to still my soul and lift my spirits than a canoe trip down a gentle river. And none of these trips have I enjoyed more than those taken with my dad. Like leisurely Sunday drives—just on water—these father-daughter paddling outings gave us time to just be together. Sometimes we’d talk about important stuff; sometimes we’d talk about things as inconsequential as the cool color combination on a passing dragonfly. One of my favorite laidback float trips with dad was on Terrapin Creek, but the list of liquid trails flowing slow and gentle all across our state is a long one. Dr. Harvey Jackson of Jacksonville State University and author of Rivers of History: Life on the Coosa, Tallapoosa, Cahaba and Alabama Rivers, as well as longtime recreational canoe enthusiast Curtis Simpson of Anniston have great interest and experience to share. So, choose the stretch of water that most appeals to you, and pick your craft—canoe or kayak. Then relax and let yourself be lulled by the melodious rhythm of your paddle carving the water.

Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 61

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ummer Events

Summer Featured Events 100th Anniversary of the City of Lincoln, Alabama Municipal Complex (205) 966-6607 Saturday, July 3 Celebrate the centennial of the city of Lincoln with the unveiling of a historic marker, entertainment and other activities. Wedowee Fourth of July Boat Parade Lake Wedowee/R.L. Harris Reservoir (256) 276-7959, Thursday, July 3, 10 a.m. Fee for participants only. Boats and personal watercrafts decorated with a patriotic theme.

Museums/Gallerys Berman Museum of World History Anniston (256) 237-6261, Tuesday - Saturday, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Sunday, 1-5 p.m. Closed Mondays, now through Memorial Day 3rd Annual Vintage Bazaar Browse unique treasures in this one-of-a-kind eight day consignment sale: the 3rd Annual Vintage Bazaar at Berman Museum, July 24-31, 10.a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Saturday and 1-5 p.m. Sunday. Shop higher quality items offered by Berman Museum members and community friends. A portion of the proceeds benefit Berman Museum’s general budget. You never know what you will find: especially prized items from 2009’s Bazaar were a silver service & full set of china, hand embellished linens, vintage costume jewelry, 1950’s collectibles, and a fine wooden music box. No admission required to shop.

Anniston Museum of Natural History (256) 237-6766, Tuesday - Saturday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Sunday, 1 - 5 p.m. Closed Mondays, now through Memorial Day 80 Years Young Now Through December 31 If you are or will turn 80 years old in 2010, then your admission to the Museum is free all year with your valid ID/proof of age. Simply show your valid ID/Proof of age to the Museum receptionist when you enter, and begin enjoying the perks of being 80 Years Young, just like us! 80 Days of Summer Beginning June 1 and continuing through August 19 Attention year 1980 babies, who says turning thirty is all bad? This summer we’ll help you celebrate your birthday along with our 80th Anniversary. Anyone born in the year 1980 (must present valid ID with proof of birth year), will receive free admission to the Museum when 64 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

accompanied by another visitor’s paid admission. Paying visitor may be of any age, 4 and over! They pay regular admission and you, year 1980 baby, get in free! It’s the 80 Days of Summer, another great part of our 80th Anniversary Year. Junior Naturalist Discovery Camp Tuesday, July 13 through Friday, July 16 — 9 a.m.–3 p.m. Deadline for registration: Friday, July 2 Campers from grades 4–6 will discover the fascinating world of nature in this four day camp at the Museum. There will be off-site field trips to nature and science centers, plus a day of exploration at Anniston Museum and Berman Museum of World History, next door. Students will be able to explore areas of the Museum that are not generally open to the public, such as the Live Animal Facility. There they will learn more about the Museum’s animal collection and how the animals are cared for. Students will even have the opportunity to handle some of them. Activities utilizing the nature trails and Museum Exhibit Halls will reinforce the concept of conservation of the environment. Snacks will be provided each day; students should provide their own lunch. Full day camp: $130/member; $140/non-member. (256) 237-6766 ext 114 or 116. Senior Safari Designed for Seniors, 60+ Cathedral State Park and Lake Guntersville State Park Tuesday, July 27 off-site Deadline for registration: Tuesday, July 13 The Museum will offer another in our very special Senior’s only trip series, Tuesday, July 27. Travel in comfort in the Museum van to visit Alabama’s newest State Park, Cathedral Caverns State Park. The perfect trip for a hot July day in Alabama, Cathedral Caverns maintains a comfortable 60-degree temperature all year round. View many interesting cave formations as you walk through this subterranean wonderland. After the cave, Safari-goers will head to Lake Guntersville State Park and lunch in the Pinecrest Dinning Room of the newly remodeled Lodge. Cost is $50/person; $45/member and does not include lunch. Deadline for registration is Tuesday, July 27. For reservations or questions, call (256) 237-6766, ext 114, or email Note: we are unable to accommodate wheelchairs in the Museum van. White Elephant Sale Saturday, July 31 — 9 a.m. until noon. Shop the annual Museum League tag sale, featuring gently used items from member’s attics and basements. From tiny treasures of jewelry and ornaments to fabulous finds like furniture or electronic equipment, this fun sale always provides some surprises for shoppers. Watch for more details in future newsletters and on the website calendar, www.

Fernbank Science Center Atlanta, Georgia General Information, (404) 929-6300; Ticket Reservations, (404) 929-6400, Monday - Saturday, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Sunday, 12 noon - 5 p.m. De Soto’s Footsteps: New Archaeological Evidence from Georgia On view May 22, 2010 – March 1, 2011

A collection of rare artifacts never before displayed to the public. Five years after Fernbank Museum launched an archaeological expedition to investigate the history of early contact between Native American Indians and Europeans in Georgia, De Soto’s Footstepsshowcases some of the rare artifacts that tell of those encounters and will reveal the significance of the findings. This special exhibition includes metal and glass artifacts that led Fernbank’s lead archaeologist, Dennis Blanton, to conclude Hernando de Soto’s footsteps could be traced to an unexpected location in Georgia.

High Museum of Art Regular Hours Monday — Closed Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday & Saturday — 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday — 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday — 12 noon to 5 p.m. Tickets may be purchased by phone at (404) 733-5000 (404) 733-5386. All ticket orders placed via phone will incur a $2.50 per ticket service charge. Tickets may be purchased in person at the High Museum of Art admission desks or at the Woodruff Arts Center Box Office, located in the Memorial Arts Building. The Allure of the Automobile Through June 20 The exhibition will present 18 of the world’s rarest and most brilliantly conceived cars ranging from the 1930s to the mid-1960s, including masterpieces by Bugatti, Duesenberg, Jaguar, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche and Ferrari. European Design Since 1985: Shaping the New Century European Design Since 1985: Shaping the New Century June 5 through August 29. Hailed “a tour de force” by The Wall Street Journal, this exhibition redefines Modernism and Postmodernism, which have both not only shaped European design but have also had a profound impact worldwide. The exhibition includes furniture, glass, ceramics, metalwork and more, created by some of the most influential artists of our time.

Harris-McKay Realty Each Office Is Independently Owned (256) 236-0377 • (256) 237-8100 123 South Quintard Avenue Anniston, AL 36201 LELA SARRELL ................................................237-1353 BOB ARNOLD .................................................237-5606 EDDIE REAVES ................................................282-6407 KEITH KELLEY .................................................820-2325 WALT FRAZIER ................................................235-0560 DOLORES MILLER..........................................237-0590 RITA SMITH ......................................................237-7423 DEBBIE CARTER .............................................310-3944 RUTH PARK ......................................................831-7126 TOM HARRIS ...................................................237-8214 LANA BURKE..................... ................. 1-256-453-0825 CHRIS OLIVER .................................................310-9656 DEEDEE JONES...............................................282-1835 BRADLEY DIAL ...............................................770-3830

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Signs of Life: Photographs by Peter Sekaer June 5 through January 9. Organized by the High, this is the first major exhibition dedicated to the work of the Danish-born American photographer Peter Sekaer. Consisting of approximately 75 vintage gelatin silver prints, several of which have never been on public view, the works in the exhibition span the years 1935 through 1945 and document the effects of the Great Depression in several American cities.

Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts One Museum Drive, Montgomery, Alabama Tuesday – Saturday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Thursdays 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. Sunday 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. (334) 240-4333. Admission is free! Photographs by Yousuf Karsh (1908-2002) Robert Frost, 1958 Gelatin silver print on paper Lent by Mrs. Yousuf Karsh Through August 8 By the time of his retirement in 1992, more than 15,000 people had been the subjects of Yousuf Karsh’s portraits. His technical mastery of lighting and printing enabled him to produce remarkable portraits with rich, velvety blacks, clear, strong whites, and a complete tonal range in between.

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Tin Man: The Art of Charlie Lucas Charlie Lucas at the Flimp Festival, photograph by Emily Thomas Through June 20 Alabama-native Charlie Lucas’ scrap steel sculptures and vibrant paintings simultaneously combine the aesthetics of Modernist abstraction with the whimsy of folk art. Lost in Form, Found in Line: Works by Robert Motherwell (1915-1991), In White with Green Stripe, 1987, Lithograph/Relief Print, Embossing and Collage, Courtesy of Jerald Melberg, Inc Through June 27 Robert Motherwell was one of the great painter/printmakers of the midtwentieth century, and a prominent figure in the movement known as Abstract Expressionism. About sixty works will be included, along with photographs of Motherwell’s studio inspiration walls and of the artist at work. Nicola Marschall and the Walker Family at Cedar Grove Nicola Marschall, First Lieutenant J. Mack Walker, 1865, Oil on canvas, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Hopson Owen. Through June 20 In 1865, Prussian-born artist Nicola Marschall painted a full-length, posthumous portrait of a Civil War officer of the Confederate Army, First Lieutenant J. Mack Walker, C.S.A. The Museum acquired this work as a gift of Mr. and Mrs. Hopson Owen in 1938. This exhibition is a visual summation of this research, which has established connections among the artist, the subject’s family and their ancestral home, Cedar Grove near Faunsdale, Alabama. Objects of Wonder: Four Centuries of Still Life from the Norton Museum of Art William M. Harnett,Bachelor’s Table,1880, Norton Museum of Art July 3 - October 10 Objects of Wonder includes approximately fifty-two works of art from the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach, Florida. It presents a cross section of works in many media united by the genre of still life, encompassing works from many cultures and over four centuries, dating from the Ming Dynasty of China to the early 2000s.

Michael Carlos Emory Atlanta, Georgia Gold Blossoms: Indian Jewelry from the Susan L. Beningson Collection Through July 11 Celebrate the dazzling beauty and awe-inspiring technical craftsmanship of Indian jewelry with more than 150 pieces spanning 2000 years, primarily from South India. Visit the official Web site at

Art Works 921 Noble Street, Historic Downtown Anniston (256) 237-1259, Tuesday - Friday 11 a.m. - 4 p.m., Saturday, 11 a.m. –3 p.m. Paintings, turned wooden bowls, pens, and decorative pieces, fiber art, gourds, photography, jewelry and pottery.

McWane Science Center 200 19th Street North, Birmingham, Alabama (205) 714-8300, 66 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

Monday - Friday School Year Hours, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday School Year Hours, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Sunday School Year Hours, 12 noon - 6 p.m. Bugs IMAX Through August 3 Watch BUGS crawl across the giant dome screen at McWane Science Center! The Adventures of Mr. Potato Head Exhibit Through August 26 A new interactive traveling exhibit that features the much-loved MR. POTATO HEAD character leading young visitors and parents on a number of fun and educational adventures.


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Randy Awards Anniston Museum of Natural History Saturday, June 26, $25 per person Annual awards named in honor of Randy Hall. Doors will open at 6 p.m. Food will be furnished by Classic on Noble

Alabama Shakespeare Festival Montgomery Box Office: (800) 841-4273, Cowgirls by Betsy Howe with Music & Lyrics by Mary Murfitt Friday, June 11 - Sunday, June 27 Y’all won’t want to miss this very funny musical, featuring such original songs as “Don’t Call Me Trailer Trash,” “Honky Tonk Girl” and “Saddle Tramp Blues.”

Jacksonville State University Drama Department Jacksonville, Alabama (256) 782-5623, Box Office: (256) 782-5648, Thursday, June 24 - Sunday, June 27, 7 p.m. with 2 p.m. Sunday matinee Relatively Speaking By Alan Ayckbourn, Director: Wayne H. Claeren Ginny’s parents are in Australia, so who is she going to visit? Greg, her prospective fiance, thinks the people he is meeting are her parents. It’s all a royal case of concealed identities, cover-ups, and compromising situations. Reviews of Ayckbourn’s hit described it as “deliciously heady,” “a near miracle,” and “provoking the proverbial gales of laughter.”

Music Delta Classic Chastain Subscriptions Atlanta, Georgia To purchase tickets call (404) 733-5012,, or charge by phone at (800) 745-3000, Wednesday, June 23, 8 p.m. Collective Soul Friday, July 2, 8 p.m. Liza Minnelli Wednesday, July 7, 8 p.m. Art Garfunkel Friday, July 9, 8 p.m. Serj Tankian Saturday, July 10, 8 p.m. Ringo Starr & his All Starr Band Saturday, July 17, 8 p.m. Mary Chapin Carpenter Saturday, July 24, 8 p.m. Chris Isaak Friday, July 30, 8 p.m. Boyz II Men & En Vogue Saturday, July 31, 8 p.m. Queen, A Rock and Symphonic Spectacular

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Alabama Symphony Orchestra 3621 Sixth Avenue South, Birmingham, Alabama ASO Box Office (205) 251-7727 The Music of Michael Jackson Brent Havens, Conductor Friday, June 18, 8 p.m.

White’s Mountain Bluegrass Festival Springville • June 11-12, 2010 June 11-12 & October 15-16, Springville White’s Mountain Bluegrass Festival (205) 467-6927. Admission charged. White’s Mountain Park, St. Clair Springs--Fun for the whole family. Featuring live bands performing on stage, in addition to a full weekend of jammin’ throughout the park. Camping, RV and tent sites available. Delicious home cooked food. 8 a.m.- 10:30 p.m.

Music at McClellan Formerly Fort McClellan Friday, June 18 6 p.m. - Mel Melton & the Wicked Mojos 8 p.m. - Abbey Road LIVE! - Full band complete with strings and horns specializing in performing the music of the Beatles which was never performed live. This covers all of the material from Revolver, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, Magical Mystery Tour, The Beatles (White Album), Hey Jude, Yellow Submarine, Let it Be, and Abbey Road. They headline Beatles Festivals all over the world, including the world’s two largest festivals in Louisville, KY and Washington, D.C. Saturday, June 19 1 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. - Tony Yardley, Tad of Jazz, Kelli Johnson, Caribbean Chrome & the Steel Drum Ensemble, and the Sterling Silver Band. 6 p.m. - Mel Melton & the Wicked Mojos 8 p.m. - John Sebastian (founder of The Lovin’ Spoonful) Park opens at 1 p.m. All sorts of fun family activities. Live animal shows, regional art exhibits & vendors. Music provided all day by a variety of regional talents.

Festivals First Fridays Historic Downtown Gadsden First Friday of each month. Free. Stores stay open late into the evening and downtown rocks with live entertainment, special events, sales, food, and artists from all over. (256) 547 8696,

Super Saturdays Historic Downtown Anniston Third Saturday of each month. Free. Stores stay open late into the evening and downtown rocks with live entertainment, special events, sales, food, and artists from all over. (256) 237-5250,

68 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

Slocomb Tomato Festival

Slocomb June 19, Downtown Slocomb (334) 886-2334. Free. Come and enjoy this family-friendly festival, featuring entertainment, parade, music, gospel singing, receipe contest, a Ms. Tomato Pageant, and more.

6th Annual Gulf Coast Hot-Air Balloon Festival Foley June 18-20 Forty-five hot-air balloons are the stars of this festival. See the colorful balloons fly in competitions in the early mornings and glow in the evenings. During the day, enjoy more than 50 arts and crafts vendors, toe-tapping music, a children’s village, entertaining shows and festival food with a Southern, coastal flair. New for 2010, 60-ft. kite show.

Chilton County Peach Festival

Clanton June 19-26 Free admission. Various locations—Pageants and tournaments throughout the week, along with arts, peach run, cook-off, fishing tournament, crafts, music, parade, auction, barbecue and other food. (205) 755-2400. Call for schedule of activities.

Rumble on Noble Historic Downtown Anniston Saturday, August 28 Music Festival 2 p.m. - midnight

Gadsden’s RiverFest Albert Rains Blvd. Friday, June 11, 4 - 11 p.m.; Saturday, June 12, 1 p.m. until. (256) 543-3472, A family friendly atmosphere with great musical entertainment, fireworks, arts, crafts, food, kids play area and more.

Alex City Jazz Fest & Historic Marker Dedication

Alexander City, June 11-12 Come and help celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Alexander City Chamber of Commerce on Friday, June 11 and the dedication of an historic marker to commemorate 2010: The Year of Small Towns and Downtowns. Local dignitaries will speak and refreshments will be served (hours TBA). Then on Friday and Saturday evening, join in the celebration of the 20th anniversary of the Alex City Jazz Fest hosted by Russell Lands. First held to thank the customers of Frohsin’s Department Store and the citizens of Alexander City, this free annual milestone event will feature a music headliner and special activities on Friday in Strand Park downtown. On Saturday night, activities take place on the shores of Lake Martin at the Amphitheater.

Wedowee 3rd Annual Art on the Median Downtown Saturday, June 12, 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. (334) 863-6612. Free. Enjoy this art show with display by local and regional artist. Sponsored by the East Alabama Art Society.

Wedowee Arts Festival Downtown Sunday, June 6 - Sunday, June 13 (256) 357-4488. Arts, crafts, entertainment celebrating the small-town heritage of Wedowee.

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JSU’s Martin Hall (256) 782-5681, www.epic.jsu. Admission charged. Tuesday, June 22 - Friday, June 25, 9 a.m.- 3 p.m. Hands-on environmental education, outdoor fun, arts and exploration of the natural world abound in this introductory camp.

Wedowee Seventh Annual Sheriff’s Rodeo Friday, July 2 - Saturday, July 3, 7:30 p.m. (256) 357-4545, Admission charged. The rodeo will feature bull riding, calf-roping, team roping, barrel racing and saddle-bronc riding and more. There will be various food, western apparel and souvenir vendors, plus slides and rides for the younger rodeo fan to enjoy.

Jacksonville Mountain Longleaf Adventure Camp JSU’s Martin Hall Tuesday, July 6 - Friday, July 9, 8:30 a.m.- 4 p.m. (256) 782-5697,, Admission charged. Hands-on environmental education, arts, and exploration of the natural world abound in this camp.

Wedowee 4th Annual Lake Wedowee Ski Tournament Chimney Cove, 88 Fireside Drive Saturday, July 10, 8 a.m.-3 p.m. (256) 357-0101,, Free. Competition in slalom, freestyle skiing and wakeboarding. 30 trophies awards including Killer Crash and Extreme Air. Food, vendors and music. Fundraiser for Randolph County Animal Shelter.

Jacksonville “Greenager” Mountains & Canyon Camp JSU’s Martin Hall Tuesday, July 20 - Friday, July 23, 8:30 a.m.- 4 p.m. (256) 782-5697, Fee for participants only. Hands-on environmental education, arts, exploration of the natural world and outdoor adventures abound in this camp for pre-teen and teenagers who have completed at least 3 yrs of advanced camp. $250 pp. (includes lunch and supplies). Pre-registration required.

Sports Anniston’s Runners Club YMCA of Coosa Valley presents: Rockin’ on the River, 10K Run Coosa Valley YMCA, 100 Walnut Street, Gadsden, Alabama Saturday, June 5, 8 a.m. For more information: Contact Brandi Martin (256) 547-4947 or 549-0351 Babysitting provided! $20 Pre-Registration (postmarked by May 22) Cash awards Overall Male and Female 1st - $100, 2nd - $75, 3rd - $50.

Alabama Sports Festival 28th Anniversary State Games Birmingham, June 18-20. Birminghma Jefferson Civic Center (334) 280-0065. Free. This is Alabama’s largest multi-sport Olympic-style event with 20 sports being offered. The 70 Longleaf Style Summer 2010

event includes an official opening ceremony with a parade of athletes, oath to athletes, lighting the cauldron, and musical entertainment. Open to all residents of Alabama.

Anniston Calhoun County Sports Hall of Fame Induction Banquet Anniston City Meeting Center Saturday, June 19, 6 - 8 p.m. (256) 237-3536, Admission charged. Six new people inducted, joining the likes of former U.S. Open champion Jerry Pate, longtime major leaguer Willie Smith, former Birmingham News columnist Clyde Bolton.

Callaway Gardens Fitness Series Sprint Triathlon Sunday, June 20 For more information on the event please call Dave Johnson Enterprises at (770) 565-5208, Callaway/info/calendar The Sprint Triathlon is a 1/4 mile swim - 10 mile bike - 2 mile run. Expectations are that this event will become one of the most popular triathlons in the country.

Haley’s Team 4th Annual Twilight 5K Saturday, June 26, 8 p.m. Miller Gymnasium, McClellan Corner of 12th Street and Summerall Gate Road Registration closing date Thursday, June 24, 11:59 p.m.

61st Annual Press Thornton Future Masters Dothan, June 26-July 3 Dothan Country Club (334) 793-7144. Free. A junior golf tournament for boys ages 8-18. Approximately 500 players and their families come from all over the country to play in this prestigious event. 7 a.m.- 6 p.m.

Woodstock 5K Anniston High School Saturday, August 7, 5k Race starts at 7:30 a.m. Kidstock 1 Mile Run/Walk Race starts 8:30 p.m. (256)239-9001, Race Director: Brooke Nelson

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238-1011 Summer 2010 Longleaf Style 71



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Longlead Summer 2010  

The Summer 2010 issue of Longleaf