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May CONTENTS 2014 • VOLUME 11 • NO. 5
48 Blooming Obsessions Over the top for orchids. By Charles Wilson
18 Living Well Designing for Dementia in Holland. By Corey Latta
52 Memphis’ Hidden History Unmarked Sites Hold Fascinating Stories. By Devin Greaney 56 Historic Architecture Our buildings, our stories. By Karen Ott Mayer
20 Living Real The art of stained glass. By Sarah Vaughan 22 Exploring Art Don Jacobs’ wonderful artful walls. By Devin Greaney 26 Exploring Books An abundance of architecture - on the page. By Corey Latta
30 Exploring Cuisine Cooking Panama style. By Bobby Hickman
62 In Good Spirits The Margarita. By Ashley Buescher
34 Exploring Destinations Enter the doors of Houmas Plantation. By Cheré Coen
68 Table Talk The visual feast of Anna Beth’s in Pontotoc. By Karen Ott Mayer
40 A Day Away.... in Marion, Arkansas.
70,71 Exploring Events
44,45,46 Greater Goods Gifts for grads, Mom & more! 64 Homegrown One local honeymaker is the bee’s knees. By Ashley Buescher
72 Only a House Tours of childhood now cherished memories. By Karen Ott Mayer
editor’s note} may
welcome home If ever an issue blossomed close to my heart, it is this one. This May’s DeSoto marks our stories and conversations about architecture, historic places and art. As someone who has been salvaging old furniture since a teenager and who now lives in a 1920s farmhouse (yes, still under renovation), I relish talk of old things. As I interviewed Todd Sanders of the Mississippi Department of Archives and History this month for the feature on page 56, he said something that resonated with me. In Mississippi and in his world, structures older than 50 years old are considered historic. Think about it: That means buildings from the 1960s! We all gravitate to the really old places like the family home in Pontotoc that now boasts the restaurant “Anna Beth’s on Oxford” but do we think about those places that will soon be in our far past, and not in our recent past? One way to continue cherishing those irreplaceable sites is to visit those folks dedicated to fine craftsmanship. We can find Jerry of Our Glass Studios on page 20 who spends his time creating stained glass for all types of structures. Or there’s Don Jacobs whose hands and brushes transform an ordinary wall into a timeless piece of art. On page 18, Corey’s Living Well piece introduces us to a fascinating concept that involves designing and building with one group of people in mind: Those suffering from Alzheimer’s. It’s a good reminder about how our spaces can enrich our lives.
MAy 2014 • VOL. 11 NO. 5
Publisher & creative director
adam Mitchell associate Publisher & advertising director
Paula Mitchell account executive
Mandy armstrong editor
Karen ott Mayer art director
sarah vaughan PhotograPhy
ashley beuscher cheré coen devin greaney
Across Mississippi, people fight everyday to preserve old buildings, cemeteries and sites from destruction. Every time we tear something down that could be salvaged, we lose a money or human power can ever replace. It’s gone. We all have our places in time now that will someday define us to others. What does your place say? Listen closely, it’s telling a story. Enjoy May!
karen ott mayer michael mccarthy charles wilson editorial contributors
ashley beuscher cheré coen devin greaney bobby hickman laZelle Jones corey latta Karen ott Mayer sarah vaughan charles wilson Published by desoto Media co.
on the cover The magnificent Walter Place, located in Holly Springs, Miss. in some ways resembles a medieval castle more than an antebellum gem, but it’s Civil War History and Corinthian Order columns tell a different story.
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living well} the shape of comfort
THe SHAPe of CoMforT How Architecture Can Build Security for Those with Alzheimer’s and Dementia By Corey Latta • Photo Courtesy of Peter Whitehouse
inston Churchill once famously said, “We shape our dwellings; thereafter they shape us.” It might seem odd to apply Churchill’s words to something as seemingly unrelated as a modern health epidemic, but not until you learn about the small town of Weesp in the Netherlands and how it so brilliantly treats seniors with Alzheimer’s and dementia.
In Weesp, located in Holland and quite a ways from any southern street, there lies a living center called De Hogeweyk, otherwise known as dementia Village. De Hogeweyk was designed specifically to house and treat those suffering with Alzheimer’s and dementia by creating a safe social living experience. The most basic premise behind De Hogeweyk is that though people with dementia often struggle with functioning at a nor-
mal level in society, they do not have to be deprived of the freeing benefits of socialization. Designed by Dutch architects to recreate the everyday normalties of life, Hogeweyk’s securely contained apartments are decor-ated in six themes (upperclass, homey, Christian, art-isan, Indonesian, and cultural) meant to provide “cultural touchstones” for tenants. Dementia Village sits within a secure interior perimeter, so citizens of the village can wander into shops, buy their groceries, stroll through gardens, and frequent cafes without being endangered. The key in Hogeweyk’s treat-ment is security through space, creating a place that can shape comfort. Nearer to home, experienced Alzheimer and dementia counselors realize the importance of a similar approach. Adina Samberg, social worker at Alzheimer’s Day Services in Memphis, knows the importance of creating comfort. “Familiarity is very helpful,” Samberg emphasizes. “When you remove those with dementia from what they are used to, you confuse them.” The goal of places like Hogeweyk and Alzheimer Day Services is to remove confusion through personal care and familiar comforts. Samberg explains, “You don’t want too much clutter. Their sense of depth is skewed and their perception distorted. Space obstructions like chords, wires, and clutter are hazards.” Hogeweyk’s innovative approach embodies a culture of decluttering in terms of both physical space and emotional therapy, as the village hopes that its citizens can experience some normalcy. The need for shaping such hope has never been greater. Alzheimer’s and dementia have reached developed epidemic levels. The Alzheimer’s Association reports that one in three seniors now die from dementia, and the number of Alzheimer’s sufferers has increased 68 percent since 2000. These are tragically high statistics, the severe effects of which facilities like Hogeweyk, Alzh-eimer’s Day Services, and other local assisted living residencies are working to reduce. Kim O’Donnell, Community Relations Director at Apple Grove Residence in Memphis, confirms the importance of the dementia’s sufferer’s physical space. “Environment plays a huge role in their well-being and their sense of self.” O’Donnell continues, “When all the right entities come together–medical, relational, and physical–then amazing things can happen.” Similar to the philosophy behind Hogeweyk, Apple Grove offers a host of amenities, all meant to keep residents safe, secure, and thriving in an optimistic environment. O’Donnell notes the importance of creating a thriving social environment for residents with Alzheimer’s and dementia: “We offer our residents workshops on the arts, dance, gardening, cooking, visiting musicians, and working with artistic mediums like two-dimensional textures. We also have a beauty shop on site, we offer vision exams, dental care, and psychiatrist visits.” O’Donnell’s philosophy mirrors that of the Dementia Village creators. “We all rise to the level of our competition or our immediate social environment.” In the case of Hogeweyk, the immediate social environment encourages its villagers to reclaim their social life, a hugely important part of what makes us human. The physical space of the village literally attempts to give shape to that sense of self again. As Samberg from Alzheimer Day Services laments when discussing the deteriorating effects of dementia, “They lose their sense of independence and security, then paranoia can set in. Giving them hugs, smiling at them, a gentle touch...it’s just important to create a comfortable place for them.” What we learn from progressive villages like De Hogeweyk is that while the dehumanizing deterioration caused by Alzheimer’s and dementia cannot be completely cured, we can work to support places of comfort for dementia patients and those who so tirelessly work with them. If Hogeweyk teaches us anything it is that security, comfort, and hoped can be shaped, and ultimately, built.
living real} the art of stained glass
Styling Your Space Using Stained Glass By Sarah Vaughan • Photography Courtesy of Jerry Hymel
“People are like stained - glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within.” - Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
For those interested in combining the art of art and architecture, or those who are just interested in adding some character to their home renovations, stained glass is a great place to start. Craftsman Jerry Hymel has been working with stained glass for more than 30 years. From cabinet doors to bathroom windows, Hymel is able to take ordinary household materials and transform them into works of art. The first step in creating a custom piece, he says, is to decide on the medium (glass, wood, etc.). Next, choose an artist with whom you feel comfortable and are able to communicate easily. “The inspiration for the piece, for the most part,
comes from the desires of the client,” he says. “If they want a Victorian design, don’t show them a Frank Lloyd Wright design. If, on the other hand, the client wants the artist to generate a design, the artist should consider the architecture of the home, the environment, and site orientation.” While stained glass art is most commonly found in bathrooms, kitchen cabinets and front doors, the style of the piece itself can vary from individual to individual and region to region. One of the most interesting pieces Hymel says he has ever encountered was in the home of an artist whose retrospect of one of her own pieces was second only to the large paper sculptures displayed throughout the home.
The process of commissioning a custom stained glass piece can vary, but generally, once a design has been presented to the artist (some artists will charge for the creation of a custom design), the glass is then selected and a contract is let. A deposit of 40 – 50 percent of the total sum is typically required before work begins. Installation is another important consideration. Installation can be completed by the artist, or in some instances, to save money, the client may prefer to do the work himself. After the deposit is received and the glass and lead have been ordered, construction of the panel will begin, Hymel explains. “First, a pattern is made. Then the pattern is cut out and either glued to the glass or traced on the glass. The glass is then cut and leaded into the finished panel. It is somewhat like putting together a giant jigsaw puzzle, except the pieces are glass.” Once leading is complete, Hymel then uses a soldering iron to solder the joints together. The finished panel is then glazed using a putty mixture to strengthen the panel and fill the gaps between the glass and the lead. The panel is cleaned using whiting (calcium carbonate), a natural bristle brush and a lot of elbow grease. The panel is then signed by the artist and delivered to the client for installation. To find out more about stained glass art and to see more of Hymel’s work, visit his studio’s website at www.ourglass.com.
Hymel’s work is wide and varied from gift items to kaleidoscopes, from bathroom windows to church windows, from new creations to restorations. In addition to the various commission projects, he has items for sale at the Craft Gallery at the Craftsmen's Guild of Mississippi and two galleries of the Louisiana Crafts Guild: San Souci in Lafayette, and The Guild Gallery on Julia Street in New Orleans. During the late spring and throughout the fall, Jerry exhibits at some of the foremost craft shows in the Southeast.
exploring art} don jacobs
Don Jacobs’ Wondrous Walls By Devin Greaney Photography Courtesy of Don Jacobs
Ar tist Don Jacob s
"Art is the only serious thing in the world. And the artist is the only person who is never serious.” - Oscar Wilde
or more than 40,000 years, man has made art by painting and drawing on walls. In 2014, it may not always be the first art form that comes to mind for many except for Jackson, Mississippi artist Don Jacobs who specializes in murals and faux finishes. “Instead of having just having a picture on the wall, you are surrounded by it. It’s pretty neat,” he says. Raised in Brookhaven, Miss., Jacobs has always been involved in some kind of art. A hobby musician as well, he was originally inspired by The Beatles’ music, as many were during that time. Then the visual arts caught him. 24 DeSoto
“I started out working really tiny intricate art in pen and ink and I really didn’t touch painting because I couldn’t get that kind of detail,” he says. But then, he eventually went into painting. “Over time I started working bigger and bigger and I got the urge to work large.” He studied graphic design in Germany, partially because he never thought he could make a living painting. “I never touched on painting but one Christmas my parents gave me acrylics.” And one Sunday when he was in his 30s, he started painting. “It was a whole new world,” he says.
Above: The Governor’s mansion mural completed by Jacobs in 2005 depicts five different Mississippi regions. Left: A musician as well as an artist, Jacobs second album, “Drive,” includes original songs, artwork and album design by Jacobs.
“He who works with his hands is a laborer. He who works with his hands and his head is a craftsman. He who works with his hands and his head and his heart is an artist.” - St. Francis of Assisi As an artist he would see other people’s homes, and occasionally, the ho-hum murals painted on the walls. He knew he could do better. “First mural job was sink or swim and it took me about two weeks. It turned out really well,” he remembers. When former Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour’s wife Marsha saw a mural in her sister’s house, she imagined such a design would be perfect for the Governor’s Mansion in Jackson. She decided the local artist was just the one to create the piece to cover the walls of a conference room, with the design celebrating the different regions of the state such as the Delta, Gulf Coast and Hill Country. To illustrate the natural biomes of Mississippi he could have chosen the dark greens of summer, the bright greens of spring, a warm fall palette or even the contrasty barren winter. Jacobs chose neither, instead choosing a monochromatic gray and off-white subtlety than does not overpower the senses and distract from the business of a conference room.
The Governor’s Mansion piece was finished in 2005 and opened door (and walls) to Jacobs. Jacob’s style changes with the venue. Whereas lots of colors would have been overpowering in the Governor’s Mansion, he brought a hallway to life at First Baptist Church in Jackson using the greens and browns of a Mississippi woodland. Jacobs returned to the subtle with the monochromatic soft green mural in the Ken and Sheri Hilton home in Madison, which he finished in 2007. Perhaps his most public mural in the North Mississippi Fish Hatchery and Visitor Education Center at Enid Lake which opened in 2009, celebrates the land, lakes, and people who enjoy them. At Sam and Mary Haskell’s home in Oxford, Miss., Jacob spent five months working on a mural. He is preparing to do another project in Church Hill near Natchez for Tate Taylor’s home. Taylor was the director of the Mississippi-filmed movies “The Help” and the upcoming “Get on Up”. “I figure I will be living in Natchez for at least four to five months. It is very hard work. Once I get into it, I get caught up in it… my favorite part is signing my name, which means it’s finished.” But not all projects require moving and occupying a place for months. Jacobs has created paintings in his studio, had them photographed, and printed into a wallpaper-like mural. But he still has a favorite. “I like the effect better of painting hands on, but it takes longer. The thing with painting murals is it allows me to do things that I wouldn’t get to do or think to do myself,” he says. Through all of his work, however, he did not abandon music. Every year he and friends in his hometown organize “Brookstock.” Meanwhile, he never knows from where the next job may come, and ironically, it can be close to home. His last commission was for his own mother in Brookhaven. She needed a room painted.
exploring books} mid-south architecture guides
A Page in Time By Corey Latta
architects may one day solve the question of their art, let us, while waiting for new monuments, preserve the ancient monuments. Let us...inspire the nation with a love for national architecture." - Victor Hugo
outhern writers have long captured the importance of southern architecture, subtly yet strongly, connecting the cityscapes and physical spaces of southern cities to deeper experiential meaning. For example, southern novelist Pat Conroy captures the connection between the space of a southern town and personal experience, when he writes about the city of Charleston as described here: “Walking the streets of Charleston in the late afternoons of August was like walking through gauze or inhaling damaged silk.” Conroy’s vivid imagery calls our attention to the
"Whatever may be the future of architecture, in whatever manner our young
power of the South, a power that begins in physical space and ends in the experience the very streets evoke. It is not at all uncommon for southern writers to insist that we feel the South through its streets, town squares, and buildings. You could say that one sure way to the South is through the doors and windows of southern architecture. Books, specifically those that are focused on southern architecture, serve as a gateway for the newcomer, offering visuals and basics about architecture here. We’ve gathered a few favorites for those interested in Mississippi architecture and architecture of the Mid-South.
• Mary Wallace Crocker’s “Historic Architecture in Mississippi”. Published locally by the University Press of Mississippi in 1988, this nearly 30-year old work highlights some of the oldest architectural landmarks in the state. Crocker’s strength is her systematic treatment of Mississippi’s most historic buildings and her ability to evoke a sense of personal meaning from the state’s storied past. •Another important work on Mississippi architecture to know is “Mississippi Valley Architecture: Houses of the Lower Mississippi Valley” by Stanley Schuler, which gives an important look at Mississippi’s
architectural history. Its focus on the region of the Lower Mississippi Valley provides an in-depth look at a rich part of the South’s domestic history. Schuler’s work offers readers artful photos that provide a broad view of several beautiful Lower Mississippi River Valley homes. The Lower Mississippi Valley claims some of the South’s most diverse cultural backgrounds as reflected in the architectural use of the French Colonial, Greek Revival, and also vernacular styles. Schuler’s work also provides readers with detailed illustrations of facades, floor plans, and other architectural details of homes built between 1700 and the American Civil War.
• Architectural writer Mary Carol Miller has also written two great books on domestic architecture in Mississippi. Miller’s 1996 “Lost Mansions of Mississippi" and her 2009 "Great Houses of Mississippi” give readers a look at the architecture of an upper social stratum. The houses in Miller’s works are some of the grandest found in the South, residences that evoke a distinctly beautiful southern grandeur from generations past. Miller’s volumes provide both an educational survey of Mississippi mansions and a vividly nuanced experience of upperclass living. • If we cross the state line and move into the twentieth century, we run across “A Survey of Modern Houses in Memphis, Tennessee from 1940 to 1980” by Keith Kays. Published in 2010, Kays’ work opens a small but important window into Memphis architecture. Since the book only spans 40 years, Kays’ attempt is not meant to cover a lot of chronological ground. Rather, Kays’ excellent treatment of domestic architecture in Memphis looks closely at the varied styles of mid-twentieth-century houses in one of the South’s greatest cities. Exploring the houses featured in Kays’ survey, you easily get the feeling so often invoked by southern writers. Not wholly unlike Conroy’s experience in Charleston, Kays’ Memphis gives that vivid sense that the houses and streets have an undeniable feel.
Other noteworthy titles on local southern architecture include: “Good Abode: Nineteenth Century Architecture in Memphis and Shelby County” by Perre Magness and Murray Riss “Jackson’s North State Street” by Todd Sanders “Memphis: An Architectural Guide” by Eugene Johnson and Robert Russell, Jr. “Memphis Then & Now” by Russell Johnson DeSoto 31
exploring cuisine} authentic panamanian cuisine
PANAMANIAN CUISINE By Bobby Hickman • Photography Courtesy of Stu Spivack and Jean Hsu
Above: Authentic Panamanian empenadas Right: Award-winning Chef Charlie Collins
Whether your tastes run to exotics fruits and spices, traditional Latin America dishes, elaborate international cuisine or simple, tasty meals, the cuisine of Panama has plenty of choices to tempt any palate. Panamanian cuisine offers a rich diversity of flavors with a truly global footprint. Located on a land bridge spanning two continents, the Republic of Panama was a vibrant international crossroads long before the Panama Canal was built. (In fact, Panama City has been called the “Hong Kong of the Americas.”) Local dishes are built around plentiful sources of seafood, tropical fruits, native spices, and vegetables. But their cuisine also reflects a unique culture blending Caribbean, Latin America, Native American, African, Spanish and Asian influences. An easy way to sample authentic food of Panama is at the Memphis in May International Festival. This year the festival honors the ethnically diverse culture, rich history and savory cuisine of Panama. On May 8, award-winning Chef Charlie Collins will provide samples of Panamanian cuisine during the “Viva Panama” jazz and folk dance event
at the Orpheum Theater. The following week, Chef Giovanni Dorati leads the Panamanian BBQ team during the World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest May 1517 at Tom Lee Park. Collins, guest chef for the 2014 festival, has catered events for heads of state and celebrities ranging from George W. Bush to Sean Connery. He is executive chef and owner of the Panamonte Inn in Boquete, Panama, where the hotel restaurant was named one of the best in Central America by Condé Nast Traveler. He also conducts a cooking school at the Panamonte that draws clients from around the world who learn how to blend local plants, spices, seafood and meat. Collins will introduce his newest cookbook at this year’s “Memphis in May.” In recent years, Collins has helped lead a revolution in Panamanian cooking. He combines overseas culinary experience with a passion for local traditions, producing delicious dishes that fuse international and indigenous tastes. One of his signature offerings is local river trout filet with watercress salsa, over young corn gnocchi and a DeSoto 33
Panamanian sofrito (tomato-based sauce). He has also drawn praise for using fresh, local ingredients while building upon the region’s traditional foods. “We were raised to believe that everything imported was of better quality than we had in our country,” he told Bon Vivant. “This is one of the reasons why you see so much American cuisine influencing us in Panama, but that’s changing.” While chefs like Collins are bringing new interpretations to the culinary scene in Panama, traditional dishes remain strong favorites. Staples include coconut rice (a blend of coconut milk and rice), corn, beans, and plantains. Panama’s location between the Pacific and Caribbean oceans provide it a vast array of seafood, including sea bass, snapper, lobster, shrimp, calamari and crab. Other dishes may use chicken, pork and beef. While a wide variety of native herbs and spices are available, Panamanian cuisine is neither spicy nor heavily-seasoned. Some foods common in Central and South American are also found in Panama, such as tamales, tortillas, flan and empanadas (pastries filled with meat, cheese and/or vegetables). However, preparations for even those basics can be different. For example, other cultures use corn flour to
make tortilla dough. In Panama, corn kernels are cooked in water before they are ground for dough. A typical breakfast in Panama includes meats and breads, complemented by dark rich coffee and fruit juices. Hojaldras, a type of sugar-sprinkled donut similar to a sopaipilla, can be a sweet breakfast treat or a stand-alone dessert. Similarly, any meal may be accompanied by indigenous fruits such as pineapples, coconuts, bananas, passion fruit, melons and papayas. One of the most unique dishes is sancocho, a chicken soup flavored with cilantro and containing “name,” a local root vegetable. Stews such as ropa vieja (shredded beef in spicy tomato sauce) and arroz con pollo (chicken with peas and capers) are typically served over rice. Seafood specialties include arroz con tities y coco, a combination of shrimp, rice and coconut milk. Side dishes include patacones (fried green plantains), arroz con guandu (coconut rice and guandu beans) and fried yucca root. While these and many other dishes arise from the seafood, fruits and vegetables common in Latin America, they all have their own special flavors that set Panamanian cuisine apart from its neighbors.
Mini Panamanian Beef Empanadas Active time: 1 hour, 15 minutes Total time: 2 hours, 15 minutes Servings: 24 empanadas
Vegetable oil for frying 1/2 tablespoon tomato paste 1/4 cup finely diced red bell pepper
INGREDIENTS: DIRECTIONS: Dough: 2 large eggs, lightly beaten 1 teaspoon white vinegar 1 teaspoon salt 1 stick unsalted butter, cut into small pieces and chilled 2 cups all-purpose flour 1/4 cup dry white wine 1 tablespoon sugar Filling: 1/4 pound ground beef Salt and freshly ground pepper 1 tablespoon vegetable oil 1/4 cup chicken stock or broth 1/4 cup chopped, seeded tomato 1/2 teaspoon achiote seeds (also called annatto seeds) 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro 1 small onion, finely diced 1 garlic clove, minced
1. In a food processor, pulse the flour with the sugar and salt. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Beat the eggs with the wine and vinegar and drizzle over the flour mixture. Pulse until the dough just comes together. On a lightly floured work surface, gently knead the dough until smooth. Wrap the dough in plastic and refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour. 2. In a medium skillet, heat the oil. Add the achiote seeds and cook over moderately high heat until the seeds darken and the oil is orange, about 1 minute. Discard the seeds. Add the ground beef to the skillet and cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon, until no pink remains, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic, onion and bell pepper and cook over moderate heat until the onion is softened, about 5 minutes. Add the tomato, tomato paste
and chicken stock and simmer over moderate heat until the liquid has nearly evaporated, about 3 minutes. Stir in the cilantro and season with salt and pepper. Let cool. 3. On a generously floured work surface, roll out the dough 1/8 inch thick. With a 3-inch round biscuit cutter, stamp out as many rounds as possible (you should have about 24). Reroll the dough scraps and stamp out additional rounds if possible. Brush the excess flour off the rounds. Working with 1 round at a time and keeping the rest covered with plastic wrap, form the empanadas: Spoon 2 teaspoons of the filling on one side of the dough round. Fold the dough over to enclose the filling and crimp the edges with a fork to seal. Cover with plastic wrap while you form the remaining empanadas. 4. Preheat the oven to 350°. In a deep skillet, heat 1/2 inch of oil to 350°. Fry 4 empanadas at a time, turning once, until browned and crisp, 2 minutes. Drain on paper towels and transfer to a baking sheet. When all of the empanadas have been fried, reheat them in the oven and serve.
Panamanian Sancocho Total Time: Prep Time: Cook Time: Servings: 4-6
1 hour 20 minutes 40 minutes
INGREDIENTS: 1 roasting chicken, cut into pieces (or 3-4 whole chicken breasts) 3 teaspoons salt 1 tablespoon cilantro, minced 1 teaspoon dried oregano 3 garlic cloves, minced 2 teaspoons olive oil 1 large onion, chopped into bite- sized pieces 3 lbs yucca root, peeled and chopped into bite-sized pieces (also called cassava) 4 cups chicken stock (the kind bought in a box is fine) salt and pepper DIRECTIONS: 1. Rinse the chicken and pat dry. In a small bowl, mix the salt, cilantro, oregano, garlic, and olive oil. Rub the mix all over the chicken and let it marinate for 10 minutes. 2. In the meantime, peel and chop the yucca and the onion. Set aside. 3. Heat a large pot over medium heat. Place the chicken in the pot, place a lid on it, and let it sweat for about 7 minutes. 4. Add the onion and the chicken stock. Bring the soup to a boil and then let it simmer over medium low heat until the chicken is cooked through and soft. 5. Raise the heat to medium and add the yucca. Bring the pot to a gentle simmer and cook until the yucca is cooked through (approximately 10 minutes). 6. Serve with white rice on the side that is added into the soup when you are about to eat it. NOTE: This soup keeps well frozen and gets more flavorful with time.
exploring destinations} houmas house
Houmas House: An Exquisite Getaway Into the Past By Cheré Coen Photography by Cheré Coen and Courtesy of Houmas House
As visitors turn the dramatic bend in the River Road outside Darrow, Louisiana, the magnificent Houmas House Plantation comes into view. Known as the “Crown Jewel of Louisiana’s River Road,” this massive home is framed by centuries-old live oak trees and accented by acres of manicured gardens and complementary buildings, both old and new. The origin of Houmas House is much more modest. The plantation began in the 1700s when two New Orleans businessmen, Maurice Conway and Alexander Latil, purchased the land from the Houmas Indians and built a small French Provincial residence facing the Mississippi River. In 1810, Revolutionary War hero Gen. Wade Hampton of South Carolina bought the property and expanded the house, then later passed it on to his daughter and son-in-law. DeSoto 37
Sugarcane took off in the pre-war years, and by the time Irishman John Burnside took over the plantation in 1857, Houmas House was a major sugarcane plantation encompassing 300,000 acres. Like many plantations following the Civil War and entering the 20th century, Houmas House experienced grave days and deterioration. In 2003, New Orleans businessman and preservationist Kevin Kelly purchased the home and gardens and turned the estate in the tourist attraction it is today, a luxurious spot for historic tours, romantic meals, extravagant weddings and now, an overnight getaway. Guided tours of the lovingly restored 23-room mansion are offered from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily and include a film and history of the house and its 38 acres of landscaped gardens. Inside the mansion Kelly has collected and exhibited a variety of first-class antiques and artwork, plus there’s an oversized hallway mural depicting Louisiana sugarcane. The home contains the original Latil house, now used as a fine dining restaurant appropriately named Latil’s Landing. Award-winning Executive Chef Jeremy Langlois helms the kitchen and just returned from creating a “Nouvelle Louisiana” meal at the James Beard House in New York City. Other dining options include the more casual Café Burnside, the Turtle Bar housed inside a garconniere where Hemingway would feel right at home and the new elegant Carriage House, offering breakfast, tea and dinner. The latter building was created last year from blueprints by New Orleans architect James Gallier who had originally designed the space for Burnside. The Carriage House offers a massive table through the center with small tables surrounding the perimeter, all accented by crystal chandeliers, magnificent crown molding, antiques and artwork, plus caged finches singing next to massive windows overlooking the gardens. And since the Carriage House specializes in afternoon tea, there’s also a more manly room off to the side, filled with taxidermy and comfortable chairs. 38 DeSoto
The menâ€™s parlor provides the perfect setting for an after-dinner game of cards or a delicious mixed drink.
The womenâ€™s parlor combines comfort with class and features feminine touches including the gorgeous chandelier.
The charming gardens of Houmas House are inviting and provide the perfect spot to enjoy lunch or dinner.
Also new to the property is The Inn at Houmas House, 21 luxurious rooms within cottages that are located right on River Road, its architecture depicting the historic structures that once graced nearby Uncle Sam’s Plantation in St. James Parish. Each room offers artwork and antiques or quality reproductions, elegant linens and oversized baths with upscale products and soaking tubs, plus porches where visitors can enjoy a glass of wine while the sun sets over the Mississippi River or French coffee in the morning. The inn rooms range from a single king or queensized bed to double queens and suites. Inn visitors receive a complimentary Louisiana plantation-style breakfast at the Carriage House as part of their stay (don’t miss the scrumptious grits and grillades and pain perdue or Louisiana French bread), with unlimited access to the plantation gardens. To fully enjoy Houmas House for a weekend getaway, arrive Friday evening and check into the Inn, then enjoy mint juleps with mint grown on site at the Turtle Bar, so named for Kelly’s collection of turtle shells that now decorate the walls. Walk a few steps to the Carriage House for a casual dinner, featuring a menu that was also created by Langlois. On Saturday, leisurely tour the home and gardens and enjoy breakfast and tea at the Carriage House. Dress up and imagine yourself in another era while sampling Langlois’ delicious Cajun-Creole seven-course menu at Latil’s Landing. If you’re feeling brave, you can hunt for the plantation ghosts before retiring back at The Inn. Occasionally, Houmas House offers special occasions such as the Mother’s Day Buffet and the Art Gumbo Market where local artists display and sell their wares. If you’re looking for a wedding destination, Houmas House hosts approximately 100 weddings each year, from an intimate party of two to a wedding party for 1,800. www.houmashouse.com
gift guide} gifts for grads
gift guide} gifts for mom
gift guide} gift-wrapping ideas
A Growing Obsession Text and Photography by Charles Wilson
“The earth laughs in flowers.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson
“I must have flowers, always, and always.” - Claude Monet
n 1979, my wife Susan Wilson and I began cultivating a growing obsession in our backyard greenhouse located in Hernando, Mississippi. Like so many, our hobby began with a gift –in our case it was a lady slipper orchid from a friend. Years later, this hobby has taken on a full-time dimension since my retirement as zoo director of the Memphis Zoo in 2001, and Susan’s retirement from nursing in 2004. Our collection has blossomed now into about 650 orchids representing over 150 different types. Our passion for orchids has also led us into the American Orchid Society judging program. While many people believe that orchids are expensive and difficult to grow, the truth is quite the opposite. With modern mass production techniques, the typical orchids of today are quite inexpensive compared to the kings’ ransoms that were legendarily paid in the 1800s.
As to their care, orchids are in many ways no different than other flowers such as African violets or roses. Most orchids are epiphytes that grow on trees or even rocks. Whether an orchid or a geranium, all plants have specific needs that must be met in order to bloom. With over 25,000 species and 250,000 hybrids to choose from, there is an orchid that will grow just about anywhere in your home. By purchasing an orchid or two in different months throughout the year, you can have something exotic in bloom year round. Most orchids, like the big colorful corsage or Cattleya orchids, have a lovely fragrance that attracts the bees and insects to fertilize them; some orchids look and smell like rotten meat to attract the flies needed to pollinate them. These can be quite bizarre and attractive, but not really desirable in the home! Some orchids are grown for their beautiful foliage – and the blooms each year are the added bonus.
To grow orchids on your windowsill, special bark mixes or even sphagnum moss is used instead of traditional potting soils. This allows the roots of the orchids to dry out slightly between watering just as they would in nature. Fertilization should be weekly and weakly (about half the strength indicated on the label). The amount of light that orchids need varies widely depending on the type. While many orchids will thrive in the light shade available through sheer curtains on a windowsill in your home or even under fluorescent lights, some require nearly full sunlight for 10 hours a day and should probably only be grown in a greenhouse. Most orchids for sale will have a label in the pot with general growing requirements which can serve as a useful guide in your selections, but don’t fall for the ‘put an ice cube in the pot once a week’ marketing trick. It may sound simple, but putting ice on tender roots can be disastrous. South, east and west facing windows can be ideal locations for growing orchids, while north windows should be avoided. Re-potting should be done about every two years. Potting materials may vary, but it is essential to keep the roots fairly tight in the pot and thus not to over-pot the plant. Native wild growing orchids are considered endangered and are protected by state and Federal laws. It’s much wiser to simply buy from a reputable vendor, but once again it is important to know the necessary growing conditions. Unfortunately, nearly all of the native American showy lady slipper orchids will not survive the hot summers of the Mid-South. Certain varieties of orchids will grow here year round, such as the Chinese ground orchid that produces tall spikes of fragrant lavender flowers in May. Greenhouses come in all shapes and sizes and can be purchased as do-ityourself kits like the 14 x 20 foot model the we built in our backyard. If you are interested in having your own greenhouse, there are three important points to keep in mind. First, choose a location with plenty of sun. Second, heating and cooling equipment needs will be determined based on how cool or warm the type of orchids (and other plants) you want to grow. Third, the height of your greenhouse may be driven by the type of orchid and method you choose to grow (e.g. using hanging baskets may mean a taller greenhouse to avoid banging your head). We put a standard 9-foot greenhouse atop a 3 foot wall to attain a 12-foot growing area to better accommodate some of the larger species we grow. Knowing which kind of orchids will grow and bloom in your home doesn’t require a great deal of research. The typical orchids available locally in markets and the big box stores are Phalaenopsis or moth orchids (so named because of the shape of their petals resembling moth wings). These orchids are easy to grow and should re-bloom each year with basic care. After your Phalaenopsis has lost its flowers, you have several options. You can simply cut the entire old spike off and wait for a new one to grow next year, or you can cut it off just above the third node on the spike to encourage it to grow a branch and bloom again. If you have an orchid that didn’t re-bloom this year, it probably needs more light. More exotic orchids like lady slippers can be grown on your windowsill (and some can even be grown in your yard like daffodils) are normally only available at special orchid shows like the one held at the Memphis Botanic Garden. 52 DeSoto
Detailed information on orchid care is available from library books, online (e.g. the American Orchid Society at www.aos.org) and at monthly meetings of the Memphis Orchid Society that meets the fourth Sunday of each month at 2:00 p.m. at the Memphis Botanic Gardens. The appeal of the Memphis Orchid Society is that each month local orchid enthusiasts can meet for fellowship and share their growing experiences along with hearing educational lectures from guest speakers. Meetings are open to guests. An interest in orchids is all it takes to grow an obsession, as we can fully attest. Truly a lifelong learning pursuit, each year we find blossoms with more information, friends and fun. memphisorchids.org
The Memphis Orchid Society Show 2-14 “Orchids in Legend and Lore” May 16 - 18 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Sunday Free admission and parking. The Memphis Orchid Society show will display hundreds of orchids from societies and growers from nine states. Thousands of unusual orchids will be available for sale. While the main purpose of the show is to provide education and entertainment to the general public, it also provides the serious orchid grower the opportunity to compete. The show is sanctioned by the American Orchid Society who will be providing over 15 accredited orchid judges from a six state region to award ribbons, trophies and special national awards that entitle the owner to add a ‘name’ to the orchid. Admission and parking will be provided for free.
The Midtown Home of Apple founder and tech genius Steve Jobs is where the icon spent his time during the recovery of a liver transplant and where he met the man who would help popularize iTunesâ€™ early rock and blues music.
Memphis’ Unmarked History Text and Photography by Devin Greaney
“If you don't know history, then you don't know anything. You are a leaf that doesn't know it is part of a tree.” - Michael Crichton
or every Graceland, Sun Studios and Elmwood Cemetery, there are unknown, unmarked places in Memphis, Tennessee with their own stories. Doors, churches, streets and buildings in Memphis hold stories of a secret nature. Whether the building is long gone or it’s a building still in use, the site can still reveal an interesting present or past fact. It is the obscurity itself that makes their presence even more compelling. 1871 - Buried treasure Long Gone 683 South 5th St. It was either one of Memphis’ creepiest stories or one of our best practical jokes. It all started in an antebellum Southern mansion, home to Brinkley Female College, where student Clara Robertson was upstairs practicing her piano one day. Suddenly, a girl with transparent skin and a look of death appeared wearing a pink, moldy dress. Not surprisingly Robertson ran and hid in a classmate’s bed. She and others saw the apparition. Later the ghost told Clara “Don’t be alarmed, Clara. My name is Lizzie. I will not hurt you.” The ghost pointed to a tree where buried treasure was located. A medium found her last name “Davie”. Ten years earlier a girl named Lizzie Davie who lived on the property had died. The story hit the papers and it seems Memphis caught ghost fever. “I remember well the day they dug up the so-called buried treasure from the yard. I never saw such a crowd before or since,” 83-year-old Delcie Schmidt remembered, quoted in a 1939 newspaper article. Men dug with no luck. Clara dug and found a jar; but Lizzie told them not to open it for two months. So the family planned to sell tickets and open it publicly at the Greenlaw Opera House. But robbers had other ideas, stealing the jar after threatening to kill Clara’s father if he did not tell where it was hidden (incidentally, in the outhouse). The mansion met the wrecking ball in 1972, but its columns were removed just before for a possible future home in Arkansas. A warehouse sits there today.
“Things don’t have to change the world in order to be important. You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever.” - Steve Jobs
1910 - His Hometown 277 S. Fourth St. How did Michigan native Danny Thomas get his hospital way down in Memphis? Thank his good friend Archbishop Samuel Strict who lived in Memphis from 1910 to 1913 as assistant pastor at St Patrick’s Catholic Church. Even in his short time here, the Bluff City made an impression on the young priest who was going places. He was soon transferred to Nashville, then Toledo and then became Archbishop of the Diocese of Chicago where he met Thomas. Early in his career Danny Thomas made a promise to St. Jude to build a shrine to the Patron Saint of hopeless causes when he too felt like a hopeless cause. Mulling over how best to do this, he thought a clinic for poor children would be a good choice. The Archbishop suggested Thomas should go big: A children’s hospital and Memphis would be just the place. He spent about 30 minutes discussing our medical center, schools, central location and giving him local contacts. He then added as home to his first parish, he considered Memphis his hometown. The comedian’s response: “Your eminence, if you’d said that in the first place you could have spared me the sermon.” 1917 - Strange Signals 500 block of Vance Historian G. Wayne Dowdy in his book Hidden History of Memphis uncovered a story straight out of the Hardy Boys. Long before the days of commercial radio broadcasts, teenager Charles Wailes listened to his wireless receiver and the dots and dashes broadcast. But strange signals were coming from somewhere in Memphis that did not sound like Morse code. Could it have been from a German spy in Memphis? A Boy Scout, Wailes asked his scoutmaster who thought little of his theory. Wailes was still suspicious and tried to find exactly from where the signals were coming. The signals seemed to have been strongest around an apartment building in the 500 block of Vance. He told his previouslyskeptical scoutmaster what he had found, who contacted the justice department. They raided the small apartment building to find German agents. Today the area is mostly filled with overgrown lots, presumably free of spies. 1970 - Tricycle in a driveway 4769 Hillmont One of the most iconic photos of the 1970s seems to capture Everywhere, USA. Local photographer William Eggleston came across this tricycle in a driveway of this home and shot this photo, titled “Memphis” which has become the Tennessee equivalent of Andy Warhol’s soup can: The ordinary exalted. Want further evidence of the power of the photo? At a 2012 auction a print of this photo sold for $578,500. Family members said Eggleston was watching the bidding from a closed circuit TV--and smiling the whole time. 1971 - Ready for travelers Memphis International Airport Roy Harrover Architects had the future in mind when building terminals A and C during additions to the Memphis airport. Before the addition of the two terminals (1971-1975), the firm tried to see into the future. What transportation options would be down the road in Memphis? Just in case, the four-year construction project included a tunnel underneath the passenger pickup drive. The tunnel would be ready for travelers without having to interrupt airport operations. A visit to the airport confirms the tunnel is still there and mostly empty except for occasional police dog training, but no subway or light rail ever came close to inhabiting the tunnel. Perhaps in another 40 years? 56 DeSoto
1982 - 57,939 Names 1025 John A Denie It is hard to imagine today, but Maya Lin’s design for the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial in Washington was very controversial. No one had seen anything like this black granite wall built into the earth and sandblasted with the names of those who were killed in the conflict from the days of military advisers in the 1950s to the fall of Saigon in 1975. Binswanger Glass’ Glasscraft division was selected to etch 57,939 names into the stone tablets. Since then, more names have been added. Binswanger began the process in mid-May 1982, and when it was dedicated on the following Veteran’s Day, most of the controversy was gone. Many Memphians have been moved by seeing the wall while not knowing the Memphis connection, and many have passed by on the Greenline not realizing the huge role a plain building played in one of our national treasures. 2000 - A low profile 36 Morningside Place Apple Computer founder Steve Jobs helped make California’s high tech community what it is today. But when he needed a liver transplant, Memphis, not Silicon Valley, was his first choice. He purchased this 1914 Midtown home in March, 2009 for $850,000 as a place to stay during recovery. Jobs announced a leave of absence in January, while not revealing the extent of his condition to the public. He then flew to Memphis March 23 - possibly due to the shorter list for transplants - in his private jet and had the surgery later that month at Methodist Hospital’s transplant center. To say he kept a low profile in Memphis is an understatement. It was not until June that the hospital even confirmed he had received the operation, well after he had left Memphis. Despite the complicated procedure, he did experience Memphis during his visit, walking through nearby Overton Park with his doctor and visiting Sun Studios. It was there that tour guide and local musician David Brookings impressed him so much with his knowledge of music, Jobs hired him at iTunes to help develop its early rock and blues selection. Jobs died two and a half years later.
Building Histories By Karen ott Mayer â€˘ Photography by Karen ott Mayer, Michael McCarthy. and Courtesy of the Mississippi Department of Archives and History
"It is again no question of expediency or feeling whether we shall preserve the buildings of past times or not. We have no right whatever to touch them. They are not ours. They belong partly to those who built them, and partly to all the generations of mankind who are to follow us." - John Ruskin
veryday, as we drive by or live near historic buildings and sites in the South, these graceful giants from our past can easily be taken for granted or even overlooked. Eventually, when gone, our landscapes change forever and we threaten to lose much more than bricks and mortar; we lose a chapter in time. In our disposable world, we rarely find current architectural elements that compare to yesterday's - to the swoop of an arch, the deep glow of a heart pine floor or iconic columns that soar to the sky. Thanks to preservations, historians and volunteers, we still have the chance to experience and appreciate these places, each with their own pedigree and some more visible than others.
"Preservation is the most eco-sensitive and green architecture we have," says Todd Sanders, an architectural historian with the Mississippi Department of Archives and History. With government offering more federal and state tax credits, building and property owners face a greater incentive to protect and preserve. Looking across the state, it's easy to find well-known structures that capture our wonder. In Natchez, Longwood stands against time while standing still in time. The six-story 30,000 square foot mansion was almost completed when the Civil War broke out in 1861. Workmen literally dropped their tools and left. Eventually widowed, Julia Williams Nutt continued to live on the finished first floor.
Photo: Walter Place | Holly Springs, Miss.
Above: Nestled on top of a hill, surrounded by mighty live oaks, cedars, and magnolia trees, overlooking small streams with banks, Longwood stands today just as she stood when in 1861. Inside her walls lie boxes of nails and construction debris along with shipping crates still bearing the name of Julia Nutt. Imagine how Longwood would look if only she had been completed, as even in this state of incompleteness, she is an architectural masterpiece. Right: Built in 1851, the historic Hugh Craft House is an example of the abundant Greek Revival architecture found throughout the town of Holly Springs, Miss. The home was occupied during the Civil War by Union Colonel Robert C. Murphy during the time of Van Dornâ€™s raid.
"Longwood was designed by Samuel Sloan, an architect of national prominence during that time. Dr. Nutt actually saw a smaller version of Longwood but wanted his house to be bigger and grander," says Sanders, who describes Longwood as a complicated rotunda yet more octagonal with a Moorish onion dome. "The details are Italianate," says Sanders. Another favorite is Waverley Plantation Mansion located in Columbus, Mississippi. Waverley is a truly remarkable place. "Itâ€™s the only four-story rotunda anywhere in Mississippi, and quite possibly, anywhere in the U.S.," says Sanders. Built by St. Louis architect Charles Pond, originally from Maine, the home stayed
vacant for 50 years from 1913 until 1962 when the current owners, Donna and Robert Snow, purchased the property and began extensive renovations. "Pond employed a classical Greek technique with the two-story Ionic porticos, which was not very common at that time," says Sanders. Remarkably, of the over 700 original spindles wrapping the center staircase, only three needed to be replaced. Today, the home is a private residence but does schedule tours. In the South, Doric columns, square paneled columns, were widely used. "The theory is they were easier to build and they are visually weighty," he says. While certain architectural remnants like the 23
After the Civil War, during a house party on February 17, 1890 a guest left a lighted cigar on the upper balcony and Windsor burned to the ground. Everything was destroyed except 23 of the columns, balustrades and iron stairs.
columns of The Windsor Ruins garner recognition and curiosity, other equally significant locations may be more hidden. "The first example of a peripherally columned plantation house in Mississippi, called The Forest, was built in 1816. When it burned in the 1850s, only four of the five columns remained. They can still be seen today South of Highway 61," he says. Even when fire destroys, an amazing link can still provide a window into the past history. "There were no photos or drawings of Windsor, so we really don't know what it exactly looked like. Then, a researcher in Ohio found a Civil War document by a doctor who had sketched Windsor. Looking at his sketch, the house was really more eclectic than we thought, with a huge cupola and pointed Gothic windows," says Sanders. On a different scale, Sanders points to another home in Corinth, Miss. that he considers a fine example of a veranda-style, center hallway home. "It was built in 1854. While it is small, it is very detailed." Sanders is quick to point out that many people confuse architectural styles. "A dog trot is actually two homes with an open, exterior hallway connecting them both. A center hallway is actually one home with rooms on either side of an enclosed passage or hallway." When talking about those endangered places in Mississippi, Sanders states a rather ironic fact. "We all think of the older or oldest structures when it comes to preservation, but the hardest thing is the recent past that needs to be recognized. Buildings over 50 years are considered historic, so you're talking about the 1960s even." Sanders cites the Old Gulfport Library as an example. "It's impressive and it's important to us all and the people in the community."
Another often overlooked asset in the landscape are school buildings. "Everybody went to school somewhere and we have a lot that can be revived or reused," Sanders says. In Holly Springs, Mississippi, Chelius Carter, President of Preserve Marshall County & Holly Springs, Inc., and Director of the Marshall County Historical Museum, talks about local architecture in his area. Walter Place, built in 1859 and commandeered by General Grant in 1862, is currently for sale by private owners. “As a style, Walter Place is difficult to categorize. Its flanking pavilions are somewhat Gothic while the central mass is clearly of the Greek Revival period. Together they would be called eclectic. Missing from the picture is the original form of the balcony which extended from pavilion to pavilion, prior to the 1905 Theodore Link renovations (Link was the architect for the "new" 1904 State House in Jackson, Miss.).” The columns on Walter Place are fluted columns of the Corinthian Order, a style commonly found in refined historic structures, including contemporary structures as well. While impressive, the columns at Walter Place aren’t as distinctive as other elements found on the home. "The most distinctive architectural feature of Walter Place is the flanking two and a half storied octagonal pavilions. As if not distinctive enough, the architect (traditionally attributed to Spires Boling) elected to add a Gothic-inspired battlement along the flanking pavilions' parapet,” he says. Carter, who lives in the Hugh Craft House, explains its style. “It is a unique Greek Revival form being in the classic peripteral Greek temple form, meaning a colonnade on all sides with a central temple mass,” says Carter. The Chalmers Institute, a significant structure which is currently undergoing initial stabilization, holds an important role in education, serving as the Literary Institute of Holly Springs from 1837 to 1839, supplanted by The University of Holly Springs until 1843 when it ran as the Chalmers Institute until 1879. 62 DeSoto
"A building does not have to be an important work of architecture to become a first-rate landmark. Landmarks are not created by architects. They are fashioned by those who encounter them after they are built. The essential feature of a landmark is not its design, but the place it holds in a city's memory. Compared to the place it occupied in social history, a landmark's artistic qualities are incidental." - Herbert Muschamp
This building is my favorite as I have always favored the Federal Style. I look at "Federal" as the first "International Style" meaning the building designed as a machine which functions without decoration or
fenestration. In this design vocabulary, all elements are critical to the integrity of its total assembly and have a purpose; the removal of any element would degrade its functionality,â€? says Carter.
homegrown} charles force honey
A Golden Force Text and Photography by Ashley Buescher
â€œPlace a beehive on my grave and let the honey soak through. When I'm dead and gone, that's what I want from you.â€? - Sue Monk Kidd, The Secret Life of Bees hen Charles Force of Nesbit, Mississippi was a teenage 4-H club member, he chose to do a project on making honey. The project seemed an obvious choice given his grandmother kept five honeybee hives at the time. Fast forward 50 years and Force is buzzing. Having turned his 4-H project into five bee yards with 15 to 20 hives per yard, Force manages a crew of more than 750,000 worker bees who can generate up to 100 pounds of divine honey between July and October. Worker bees are actually all females. These gals literally work themselves to death as they only live up to six weeks during the honey season. The queen bees lay 2000 eggs each day, creating a surplus. Male bees, known as drones in the hive, only serve the purpose of fertilization. When the honey season comes to an end, the drones are forced to leave the hives. When they leave the home, they "swarm" and seek a new hive. The worker bees withhold food from the drones, so the drones have no choice but to find another home for the winter.
Honey reflects the seasonal blooms in which it is collected by the bees. Those with seasonal allergies are all too familiar with the bursting of various spring blooms. The blooms in Spring are light in color because they are fresh and new. Therefore, the honey from the spring blooms flows like a golden river. On the other hand, fall blooms tend to be darker in color producing a darker hue of gold. By the way, rumor has it that a tablespoon of local honey a day will assist in building up antibodies against allergies. A tasty way to test a treatment. The secret to the best honey around is location, location, location. Force strategically places his bee yards in the most dense areas of crops and riverside flora in the Delta. Since the worker bees use nectar from blooms to make honey, the better the blooms the bees are exposed to, the better the nectar. Consequently, the honey is better. Even the early spring purple blooms in the grass that many probably treat as weeds, serves as a nectar source for the bees. In exchange for the nectar, the worker bees pollinate the plants and crops while collecting nectar.
The pollination of plants and crops results in larger and richer plants and produce. Therefore, the local farmers welcome the hives on their farmland. These crops include the food that feeds the nation. As a result of pollination, bees play an important role in the nation’s food supply. In fact, if honey bees ceased to exist today, the nation’s food supply would decrease by 33 percent.Be nice to bees by keeping a few naturallyoccurring blooms in the yard. As the former president of the Memphis Area Beekeeper Association and currently an active member, Force warmly invites anyone interested in the craft of beekeeping to attend a monthly meeting. The association holds meetings the second Monday of every month at 7:00 p.m. The meetings are held at the Agricenter International in Memphis, Tenn. Attendees benefit from knowledgeable speakers and keepers. In addition, those interested in starting their own bee yard will learn everything there is to know about beekeeping.
We’d love to name all the co-ops, salons or local shops carrying Charles Force honey, but with so little room, here’s a good start for you. Southern Roots Nursery and Garden Center 2971 Holly Springs Road Hernando, Mississippi 662.429.3611 Like us on Facebook! Catfish Country 3780 Holly Springs Road, Extd. Hernando, Mississippi 662.429.0846 Like us on Facebook! Main Street Antiques 105 Main Street Como, Mississippi 38619 662.526.1000 Like us on Facebook!
in good spirits} the margarita
Margarita Madness By Ashley Buescher • Photography Courtesy of La Condesa | Austin, TX
“If life gives you limes, make margaritas.” - Jimmy Buffett
the drink: Margarita. the history: For a drink that’s so popular and versatile, its origins remain an enigma. The tagline, “Margarita: It’s More Than a Girl’s Name”, is reported to belong to the first importer of Jose Cuervo in 1945. However, was this importer the creator of the margarita? No one truly knows. Another legend is that a 1938 restaurant owner, Carlos “Danny” Herrara, had a regular client who could only tolerate tequila. This client was an aspiring actress named, Marjorie King. The story claims that Herrara transformed the tequila shot with a salt lick and lime wedge into a cocktail smoother on King’s palate, hence the name Margarita. A less likely version of the cocktail's birth is that a Dallas socialite named Margarita Sames created the drink for friends attending a 1948 party in her Acapulco vacation home. Some do not believe the margarita was born in Mexico at all; however, during prohibition, many Americans made visits across the border for alcohol. An actual recorded account tells of an editor stumbling upon the drink in Tijuana in 1936. No pun intended. The true origin may never be known, but one thing is for sure. The Mexican martini made its way across all borders and became a bartender’s concoction canvas. the Mixology: The most primitive form of a margarita is a perfect blend2:1:1 ratio of tequila, triple sec and lime juice or 2:1 ratio of tequila and fresh lime juice. Salt the glass rim, be generous with the ice and garnish with a lime wedge. Adding a splash of Triple Sec to this combination is also seen as “classic”, served with or without ice. In 1971, Dallas restaurateur Mariano Martinez gave consumers a frozen option with the invention of the frozen margarita machine. Unique versions of the margarita exists in both forms across the U.S. In southwestern states like Arizona, the prickly pear margarita, made from fruit of the prickly pear cactus, is abundant. New York City bartenders heat up consumers by adding jalapeno infused tequila, jalapenos and smoked salt to the classic foundation. In the South, fruit makes several luscious fruity versions of the margarita. In the French Quarter in New Orleans, La., seek out an orange margarita. Adding a splash of Agave nectar will sweeten the cocktail. Flavor a margarita with any fresh fruit.
The Margarita by Lucy "Lulu" Buffett (Jimmy Buffett's sister) Served at Lulu’s, Homeport Marina, Gulf Shores, Alabama 2oz Patron silver tequila 1 oz Patron Citronge orange liqueur Juice of 1 /2 fresh lime 1 fresh lime wedge Coarse salt Lime wedge to garnish Fill a shaker with ice. Add first three ingredients (toss the squeezed lime half into the drink. Run the lime wedge around the rim of the glass then salt the rim. Fill glass with ice. Strain mixture into the glass. Garnish with lime wedge.
table talk} anna beth’s on oxford
Eating Entrepreneur Style Anna Beth’s on Oxford Serves More Than Just Food Text and Photography by Karen Ott Mayer
At Anna Beth’s on Oxford in Pontotoc, Miss, food makes up only a portion of the story. For owner and entrepreneur Beth Waldo and her husband Darryl, building an experience for visitors takes as much priority as creating the next dish. Located on the corner of West Oxford and College, the two-story white frame house has truly found a second life with the Waldos. When the Waldos purchased the family-owned home in 2012, the pair embarked on a renovation that returned the home to its former glory, opening the
restaurant and event space in November 2013. Gleaming wood floors, taken from the walls, creak appropriately under foot in the home which was built in 1898. “We were both born and raised in Pontotoc and I always loved the house,” says Waldo. No stranger to huge projects, Waldo in her lifetime has owned an assisted living facility, a flower shop and helped build local Dollar General stores in the area. A true entrepreneur at heart, she details their recent journey to becoming restaurateurs.
“As with any business, you don’t do anything else in the first two years except put everything into the business. You don’t take vacations or buy anything extra for yourself.” And the couple’s dedication shows. A gravel parking lot behind the house leads guests down brick paths through a garden area and the two-story back porch. Just off the main hallway, the gift shop easily distracts visitors with its Mississippi-made products. Lunch offerings are both common and uncommon. "We wanted to have very familiar things on the lunch menu along with more unusual offerings," says Waldo. Chicken salad and a daily special fit into usual favorites. For the night menu, however, Waldo went on a hunt. "I sought out our meat, visiting trade shows and trying all kinds of steaks. I wanted a good quality meat. I've seen customers cutting our steaks with a butter knife. Anna Beth's serves an aged Angus ribeye and filet mignon. Another favorite is the blackened catfish. With homemade breads and desserts, however, it’s easy to cave in to the temptation. “We’re known for our homemade yeast rolls. All our desserts are made from scratch, as well as our banana and sourdough breads,” says Waldo. While the couple sees local faces, she’s been delighted with the many out-oftown visitors. “I set out to draw from outside of our town, and it really pleases me to meet people from all over.” Anna Beth’s on Oxford has quickly become the spot for events, wedding receptions, class reunions and special occasions. “We’ve also started catering and offer take-away frozen homemade casseroles,” says Waldo. It’s clear Anna Beth’s brings a new scene to Pontotoc. “They’ve added quite a touch of class and provide a much-needed event service and space,” says Ellen Russell, the Main Street Manager in Pontotoc. When Waldo walks around listening to the laughter and chatter of her guests, it’s easier to forget she was walking on dirt floors in the house not long ago. “It’s truly a vacation for people. And when I hear all the laughter or see people enjoying themselves, I know it was all worth it.”
Anna Beth’s on Oxford 149 W. Oxford Pontotoc, Miss. Phone: 662.489.2516 Visit us on Facebook!
Anna Beth’s on Oxford Owner Beth Waldo
exploring events} may Hernando Farmer’s Market SATuRDAyS IN MAy, 8AM-1PM Hernando Courthouse Square Downtown Hernando Hernando, MS 38632 www.cityofhernando.org/farmersmarket/ 662.429.9092 Located on the historic Hernando Square, the Hernando Farmers Market combines the best of local food, artistry and agricultural traditions of Hernando. The market provides farm-fresh dairy, baked goods and more. Throughout the season, enjoy live music and special events that will take place during market hours. Designated a certified Mississippi Market by the Department of Agriculture and Commerce, you can be assured of fresh local food and products.
Natchez Festival of Music MAy 3RD-24TH Natchez City Auditorium 207 Jefferson St. Natchez, MS 39120 www.natchezfestivalofmusic.com 601.445.2210 This festival provides high quality opera, Broadway and jazz performances and seeks to provide positive performing opportunities for outstanding artists, to develop a young artists program to nurture and encourage talented young singers in their careers and to allow them to share in educational and outreach school programs throughout the MississippiLouisiana area.
Esperanza Bonanza MAy 7TH-10TH
DeSoto Arts Council Creative Kids Camp JuLy 14TH-18TH, 10AM-3PM www.desotoarts.com • DeSoto Arts Council • 564 Commerce St. • Hernando, MS Register your child now for the DeSoto Arts Council’s Creative Arts Summer Camp for children ages six through 12. Registration is open now.
Senatobia Five Star City Fest MAy 9TH/10TH Downtown Senatobia Senatobia, MS 38668 www.facebook.com/fivestarcityfest 662.562.8715 Senatobia's Five Star City Fest will include a street dance featuring music from Mark "The Mule Man" Massey, Burning Magnolias and Dr. Zarr's Amazing Funk Monster. Food, available from vendors, includes a shrimp and crawfish boil. Proceeds will go toward the renovation and restoration of downtown Senatobia.
4th Annual Gulfport Music Festival MAy 9TH/10TH
15th Annual Mayfest Festival & 3rd Annual 5K Run/Walk MAy 10TH, 9AM-5PM | 5K @ 8AM Olive Branch Old Towne Olive Branch, MS 38654 www.olivebrancholdtowne.org 662.893.0888 Join us for a day of fun for the entire family, beginning with a 5K walk/run. Enjoy food, games, arts and crafts, live music and entertainment for the children.
Pioneer Day at French Camp MAy 10TH French Camp Historic District 91 LeFluer Circle Mile Marker 181 on the Natchez Trace French Camp, MS 39745 www.frenchcamp.org/historic 662.547.6482
Marion Athletic Complex Intersection of Carter and Patriot Drive Marion, AR 72364 www.esperanzabonanza.org 901.484.7752
Jones Park 2250 Jones Park Dr. Gulfport, MS 39501 www.gulfportmusicfestival.com 228.388.2001
Experience Marion’s most exciting event of the year complete with a carnival, backyard BBQ contest, rodeo, games for adults and kids, a golf scramble and live entertainment.
Experience Mississippi’s most exciting music festival featuring Kid Rock, Ludacris, 311, Sublime, Third Eye Blind, The Pretty Reckless, Cypress Hill and more. The festival will be located at Gulfport’s beautiful Jones Park with views of the Gulf.
Enjoy the historic village of cabins, museum, and the antebellum home located at French Camp. The festival features square dancing, an old-fashioned carnival, live music, a skillet toss, crosscut saw competition, historic demonstrations, and arts vendors. Free admission with concessions and lodging available.
43rd Annual GumTree Festival MAy 9TH-11TH
Travis Tritt MAy 10TH
211 W. Main St. Tupelo, MS 38801 www.gumtreefestival.com 662.844.ARTS
Lady Luck Casino 1380 Warrenton Rd. Vicksburg, MS 39180 www.ladyluckvicksburg.com 601.636.7575
22nd Annual Golf Tournament MAy 8TH, 1PM TEE TIME Cherokee Valley Golf Club 6635 Crumpler Blvd. Olive Branch, MS 38654 www.sodesoto.com DeSoto Economic Development Council is partnering with A & B Distributing Company for their annual golf tournament to raise funds for the Foundation for Excellence in Education. For more information, please email email@example.com, or stop by the DeSoto Economic Council office at 316 West Commerce Street in Hernando, Miss.
The 43rd Annual GumTree Festival offers visitors the chance to enjoy live entertainment, food vendors, kids crafts and activities and art from dozens of artists and craftsmen. This year’s lineup features singer songwriter Jake Fussell of Thacker Mountain Radio.
Lady Luck Casino presents the Travis Tritt Live Concert. Doors open at 6 p.m. and the show begins at 7 p.m. Tickets are $20 in advance and may be purchased online or at Otis & Henry. Tickets are $30 at the door.
exploring events} may Jimmie Rodgers Festival MAy 15TH-17TH Jimmie Rodgers Museum 1725 Jimmie Rodgers Drive Meridian, MS 39307 www.jimmierodgers.com 601.485.1808 A celebration of the Father of Country Music that includes a crawfish boil, live music, and a performance by Sawyer Brown. Tickets available online at itickets.com.
40th Annual A’Fair in Hernando MAy 17TH, 9AM-5PM Hernando Courthouse Square Downtown Hernando Hernando, MS 38632 662.280.8875 Join us for the 40th Annual A’Fair on the Square in historic downtown Hernando for a 5K run/walk and festival with live music and more than 200 arts and crafts vendors.
Trail of Honor MAy 17TH-19TH
The Down From the Hills Mississippi Bluegrass Championship is presented as part of the New Albany Heritage Music Festival and features some of the area’s greatest local musicians. On-site registration begins at 8:30 a.m. with a violin, mandolin, dobro, guitar and banjo competition starting at 10 a.m. Admis-sion to the event is $5.
2014 V.I.B. Mid-South Wedding Show
MAy 20TH, 7-9PM
Whispering Woods Hotel 7300 Hacks Cross Rd. Olive Branch, MS 38654 www.midsouthweddingshow.com 901.368.6782 The Very Important Bride Food Tasting and Show is coming to North Mississippi. Meet the Mid-South's leading bridal experts from catering companies to bridal boutiques and learn everything a bride and groom need to know to plan the perfect wedding.
“Big River” MAy 22-25 | MAy 29 - JuNE 1
Behind Harley Davidson of Jackson 3509 I-55 South Jackson, MS 39212 www.trailofhonor.org
Corinth Theatre-Arts Playhouse 303 Fulton Drive Corinth, MS 38834 www.corinththeatrearts.com 662.287.2995
The Trail of Honor features historical demonstrations of military life on a walking trail through history. From the French Indian War to the current operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Trail of Honor gives the public insight into what our servicemen and women have endured while serving our country.
The last play of the current season is the beloved musical based on Mark Twain’s novel “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.” Set on the Mississippi River, freedom-loving Huck leaves his home with a runaway slave named Jim in search of adventure. Rated PG. Tickets - Adults: $12 • Students: $6.
Down From the Hills: The Mississippi Bluegrass Championship MAy 17TH
Brussel’s Bonsai Annual Rendezvous MAy 23RD-25TH
union County Fairgrounds 112 Fairground Circle New Albany, MS 38652 www.mississippifiddlers.com
Brussel’s Bonsai Nursery, LLC 8125 Center Hill Road Olive Branch, MS 38654 www.brusselsbonsai.com 1.800.582.2593
Register today for Brussel’s Bonsai’s Annual Rendezvous Workshop for the opportunity to attend lectures and demonstrations by the industry’s leading bonsai experts and artists. Events include workshops, a savory Southern dinner, great door prizes and more. Register online at brusselsbonsai.com.
2014 Memorial Day Ceremonies MAy 24TH-25TH Vicksburg National Military Park 3201 Clay Street Vicksburg, MS 39183 601.636.0583 Programs will begin at 8 a.m. and will include a Soldiers Through the Ages Program, a military timeline honoring soldiers from the Revolutionary War to modern times, as well as a wreath laying ceremony featuring the 41st u.S. Army Band.
Mid-South Flea Market and Swap MAy 24TH-25TH The Arena at Southaven 7360 Hwy 51 Southaven, MS 38671 901.831.9519 The 4th Saturday and Sunday of each month, except in December, vendors will offer new and used merchandise including art, antiques, jewelry, furniture and more.
Memorial Day Parade & Activities MAy 26TH Vicksburg City Auditorium 901 Monroe St. Vicksburg, MS 39183 www.nps.gov/vick 601.636.0583 The Memorial Day Parade of Veterans will travel north along Washington Street from Belmont to Jackson Street beginning at 10 a.m. The Memorial Service begins at 11 a.m. at the City Auditorium. The Wreath Laying Ceremony featuring the 41st u.S. Army Band begins at 12:30 p.m. in the National Cemetery with a motorcade to the cemetery by way of Fort Hill Drive.
2nd Annual Crawfish Music Festival
MAy 31ST, 3PM-MIDNIGHT
Olive Branch Old Towne Olive Branch, MS 38654 firstname.lastname@example.org
2nd Annual Heads-N-Tails Beer & Crawfish Festival MAy 10TH, 2-6PM Snowden House • 6205 Snowden Lane • Southaven, MS 38672 Enjoy live music, crawfish and sample more than 100 beers. Must be 21 to attend. Tickets are $40 on sale at the Snowden Grove Amphitheater Box Office and at ticketmaster.com.
Join us for great crawfish, a gumbo cook-off, and live entertainment with Brian Randle, Bryan Hayes and Trent Lejeune. Guests are welcome to bring their own chair but no coolers or outside food will be permitted inside the festival area. Admission is $10.00 per person while children 12 and under are free. Free parking will be provided.
reflections} only a house
Springs, Miss Walter House • Holly
only a house By Karen Ott Mayer
hat I remember most is the oppressive heat and the lines. Standing in line with my family, I felt the same every time we set out to tour an historic site: Excited. Hailing from Ohio, my mother held a particular fondness for the grand antebellum beauties and plantation homes, all of which seemed to attract most visitors at the height of the summer season and heat. My excitement continued until my childhood impatience ran out, either with the heat or the seemingly endless docents who talked too long and all wore similar strange costumes. After tromping through properties in The Carolinas, Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi, we smart aleck kids felt like we knew everything--at age 12. “Yes, we know about the big house with the separate parlors and detached kitchens. Yes, we’ve heard about the slave quarters out back, the formal dining room, the effects of the war. I’m hot. How much longer?” Then, we just felt like tortured children, subject to an unfair amount of historical data and odd vocabulary like rotundas and cupolas. What a difference a few decades make… Today, I fully attribute my passion for old architecture and landscapes to those childhood moments when my parents bravely hauled us four kids around the South, hoping to widen our world. Somewhere, it all stuck. Recently, I had the pleasure of attending an event that opened my eyes about my young touring experiences and led me to ponder how our historical interpretations and preservation efforts continue to collectively define us, particularly here in Mississippi. Over in Holly Springs, Chelius Carter of Preserve Marshall
Longwood • N atchez, Miss
County & Holly Springs, Inc. came up with a simple, yet powerful program that has garnered support and interest, both locally and statewide. With the “Behind the Big House Tour”, an important conversation began. During their annual Pilgrimage each April, Holly Springs highlights the many stately and beautiful homes, like Walter Place; however, little discussion or touring of the slave dwellings behind the big houses has happened until the recent past. To paraphrase Carter, the big houses could not have operated without the existence of the little houses. The labor was essential. The stories are crucial to creating a complete, historical picture. During this particular evening event, I looked across the room and felt a particular sense of pride at the work being done by these Mississippians. A large crowd of black faces, white faces, old and young listened intently to several speakers talk about the positive effects of the program. More than creating another historical tour, the folks in Holly Springs have come together to tell the whole story of the local population---rich, poor, black, white, enslaved and free. More importantly, the architecture and the dwellings still exist to give everyone, kids especially, a firsthand look at the past. As a writer and storyteller, I have come to realize one universal truth about humanity. We all have stories and they are intensely relevant to us personally. When our stories are denied, a sense of injustice settles somewhere in our souls. But when we listen, when we accept, we move to a new place. It is our responsibility to let kids stand in line and whine and question. It is our job to tell the stories of all Mississippians that they will one day appreciate and tell again.