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Five generations of Mingeldorffs have called the Savannah/Bluffton area home. The family has always been community-focused, whether through local politics (LeeThis Mingeldorff, Jr. your was mayor of is stuffed with holiday cards, sales time of year mailbox Savannah in the mid-1950s), their fliers and end-of-year giving requests from nonprofits. If your businesses (Savannah Shipyard bulging mailbox has motivated you to make a charitable donation, and Mingeldorff’s, Inc.) or their here are some things to consider before you write that check or commitment to philanthropy. click that “donate now” button. Today Bud and Shirley Mingeldorff, the third generation, continue the 1. Consider to support an existing fund. family’s legacy of “bunching” giving. They, in or “bundling.” Starting in (Note: Some restrictions turn, have engaged their children. 2018 the standard deduction apply.) Spouses who both have Their hope is that this family threshold increased to $12,000 IRA accounts can each transfer tradition will be embraced by for individuals and $24,000 for up to $100,000 tax free. If their grandchildren, as well. married couples. This makes it you don’t this money for even helps usneed research the causes In earlier generations, the family’s harder to get a tax break for living expenses, this a great and organizations we want to philanthropy revolveddonations. around the your charitable One way to they get some tax relief support,” say. “We used the church. Bud’s grandparents funded strategy that allows individuals andadvised make an impact in our donor fund to help fund the building of the United to continue toBluffton donate and thecommunity. parsonage project. Our kids Methodist Church. When the receive tax benefits is totime were able to make donations into came“bunch” in recentoryears to replace “bundle” donations Before you give, research the3. fund, as well,” Shirley says. the original parsonage, Bud years, and to charities in specific the nonprofit. Unfortunately Shirley paid for the restoration of Bud, Shirley, and of their twoout while limiting donations in there are lots scams the historic Graves house. Shirley sons along with their wives other years. Establishing a there, particularly this time worked with contractors, vendors andofchildren, make practicing donor advised fund is a great year. If you’re considering and decorators to restore the philanthropy a family affair. way to do this. We’re happy a gift to a local charity, home to a magnificent historicallyThey talk about important causes to talk with you about donor Community Foundation of accurate modernity. together around the dinner table. advised funds or other ways to the Lowcountry has a free They’ll diplomatically convince receive tax the benefits from your One of the tools Mingeldorff online tool, called The other family members of aGiving familycharitable uses to execute theirCall us at donations. Marketplace, that provides project’s or cause’s value. “It giving843.681.9100. is their donor advised fund in-depth financial, governance, pulls us together as a family to at Community Foundation of program and management have discussions about whether the Lowcountry. and 2. If you’reBud 70 ½ orShirley older information for more than 125 a cause is important to support,” initially thought about setting up you can make a taxnonprofits in ourwhen area.we Toall learn Shirley says. “And a family freefoundation, charitable but gift were up to go to together, the Community putmore, our money we can dissuaded by thefrom complexity and $100,000 your IRA. Foundation’s website at support bigger things.” paperwork. “When we talked to Gifts may be used to create the Community Foundation, it the was With theclick recent change in tax a new charitable fund at and on The Giving so much easier. The Community codes, establishing a donor Community Foundation or Marketplace tab. Foundation does all the work and advised fund with Community


Foundation of the Lowcountry is not only an easy way to promote personal and family philanthropy, but can maximize tax savings. Gifts 4. Consider making can be bundled in onean year, then unrestricted gift. Many local distributed over multiple years. nonprofits struggle to raise Community Foundation invests the money, allowing unrestricted money.the Yes,fund it’s to increase andexciting giving the family a lot more to give the tocampaign offer evenorgreater to aability capital to a support causes But theyifcare about. specificto project. you’ve vetted the organization, know Each of the three Mingeldorff they have strong leadership and families donates to their donor are making positive impact, advised fund,a “even though each an unrestricted gift can help branch of the family has its own a charity grow, moresays. thing it wants toserve do,” Bud clients or find new and creative “Even so, our donor advised fund ways to solve a community lets us bring it all together through problem. the Community Foundation.” Whether want to practice 5. Don’tyou forget that nonprofits philanthropy as a family or need your support yearindividually, a donor advised round. If it feels good to give fund canthe be holidays, a helpfulimagine tool. To during learn more, give us a call that feeling all year 843.681.9100.


C H R I SandKCEO ERR G A N is president and of CEO President of I Community Foundation of Community Foundation of the Lowcountry. the Lowcountry, shares stories and insights on philanthropy in the Lowcountry. P

















N OT S U R E W H AT TO D O W I T H YO U R AN N UAL IRA DIS TRIBU T I ON ? Did you know that if you’re age 70 ½ or older, you can transfer up to $100,000 annually from your IRA to a qualified charity, tax free? Yes, tax free. If you’re charitably-minded, give us a call. We’re happy to talk with you about how your IRA charitable rollover can be used at Community Foundation of the Lowcountry to set up a charitable fund in your name or for other causes you care about. Contact Emmy Rooney at 843.681.9100.





843.681.9100 •



address 14 Westbury Park Way, Suite 200, Bluffton 29910 offices 843-842-6988 web

FREE SUBSCRIPTIONS for Residents of Beaufort and Jasper counties! $1 or less per month for out-of-area mailings


Marc Frey PUBLISHER Anuska Frey EDITOR IN CHIEF Carol Weir SENIOR CREATIVE DIRECTOR Sasha Sweeney ART & PRODUCTION DIRECTOR Michael Lupi GRAPHIC DESIGN Christine Cannon Allyson Venrick DIRECTOR OF SALES Mary Ann Kent 843-384-9390 ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES Rebecca V. Kerns 843-816-2732 Cathy Flory 843-384-1538 Majka Mochnac 843-290-9372 CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Christine Cannon, Jackie Friel, Mindi Jo Furby, Rob Kaufman, Gustuvo Rattia, Tristyn Shaeffer, Lloyd Wainscott CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Michael D. Bardano, Amy Bredeson, Nell Curran, Clay Bonnyman Evans, Jessica Farthing, Anthony Garzilli, Carrie Hirsch, Justin Jarrett, Barry Kaufman, James Mallory, Dean Rowland, Nicole Schultz, Kathleen Williams





Distinctive has been named Hilton Head Island’s favorite Granite, Stone and Marble Company in the Readers’ Choice Awards for 2019! With the highest quality of material, unmatched knowledge and unbeatable customer service, we can see why our customers don’t want to shop anywhere else. Visit one of our show rooms to see our luxurious stones, marbles, granite, quartz and quartzite that will bring any design to life. Define your style with distinct details.




Must Reads





48 Queen of Christmas

Paula Traver goes big at the holidays with decorating, food and entertaining

54 Gift Guide

We've got a sleigh full of the hottest presents this side of the North Pole. It might not all fit under the tree, so we recommend getting a bigger tree.

66 Readers' Choice Awards

The people have spoken, and we humbly present your top picks for favorite professionals, places, and experiences in the Lowcountry.



216 132 Holiday Decorating with Nature

Take your holiday decorations to the next level with a splash of nature. Get a few new decorative ideas to share.

197 Alan Jordan

Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra president Mary Briggs is retiring. Meet Alan Jordan, the new president and CEO of Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra.

216 Personal Chefs

Hiring someone else to cook may be the best present for the person in your family who's responsible for feeding the guests.


In this Issue




22 For the Bahamas


180 5 Benefits of Walking

Local residents help after Dorian.

This exercise can't be beat.

28 Historic Holidays on HHI Cultural tourism is a growing trend.



34 Economics of Giving Charity begins at home.

182 Manchester United vs. Cancer John Burk gets the trip of his life.

PARENTING 184 Traveling with Kids

PEOPLE 44 Whimsical Workshop

Tips for family car and plane trips.


God's love is front and center here.

Give a book by a local author.

200 Choral Society


Love is in the air with these singers.

The envelope please…

220 Christmas Cookies

Woodworker creates animals. .

62 Books Make a Perfect Gift 143 2019 Lighthouse Awards


194 North Island Baptist Church


Bake your way through the holidays.


10 At The Helm 12 Opinion 14 Behind the Scenes 16 News 20 Social Spotlight 26 Community Connection 27 Where in the World? 38 On the Move 157 Real Estate News 204 Calendar 222 Dining News 224 Restaurant Listings 232 Last Call





››At the Helm

Dear Reader, We hope to see many of you

A look at the dedication that went into Monthly in 2019, by the numbers:

18,480 2,174 1

at the best party of the year:


Monthly’s Readers’ Choice Party, to be held at 5:30-


9:00 p.m. on Dec. 5 at the


Sonesta Resort, Hilton Head Island. To buy tickets, go to

Being the voice of the community takes great effort, but we love what we do because of the passionate feedback we get from our readers and the individuals, organizations and businesses we cover. For over 30 years, Monthly’s mission has been to connect residents, homeowners and visitors on Hilton Head Island and in Bluffton and Hardeeville, bringing everyone who lives, works, volunteers and runs a business in the Lowcountry a little closer together. This year produced a variety of interesting covers showcasing the diversity of our community. All of this would not be possible without the support of our advertisers, our loyal readers, our talented contributors and photographers, and our phenomenal team. Thank you for your efforts. We are so proud to be part of a very special community, and we hope you all have very happy holidays and a great new year!

Marc Frey, CEO



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your voice OCTOBER 2019

your voice NOVEMBER 2019

››We Asked, You Answered: “What’s Your Favorite Holiday Tradition?” “One of my favorite holiday traditions is the Night of 100 Menorahs, which happens on the final Friday of Hanukkah each year. Congregants bring their family menorahs and display them on tables at the front of the sanctuary. When the candles are lit in each one, the room is filled with the warm glow of hundreds of lights. It’s a beautiful and peaceful way to end the holiday.”– Suzanne Eisinger

“Giving my grandkids a box on Christmas Eve that has their Christmas pajamas, a movie or book and popcorn. Also, an ornament so when they get older they have a head start on an ornament collection.” — Yvonne Wolfram MacGregor

“On Christmas Eve, we pull out a box of ugly Christmas sweaters and have fondue with our extended family.” — Jessica Farthing

“Like an advent calendar, since they were toddlers I’ve given each of my boys little treats each day of December. One day we bake cookies, one day we go ice skating, one day they get hot chocolate, a pack of gum another.” — Cappi Pate Wilborn

“My wife Jody and I always go out for Chinese, since she is (secular) Jewish and I’m not religious (though raised Catholic). It’s great. We always go to Asian Bistro on HHI.” — Clay Bonnyman Evans “Opening our Christmas pajamas on Christmas Eve and the next day seeing who can stay in them the longest.” — Erin McCarl Morgan

“Opening stockings at the breakfast table.” — Jocelyn C. Beyeler

“I’m a big fan of wearing ugly Christmas sweaters and singing Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You” as loudly and as often as I can.” — Jill Sorrells “Filling my 1950s ceramic Santa (hand-painted by my mom) with egg nog and decorating the tree.” — Maria Whittington Malcolm

“Making homemade fried dough or cinnamon rolls for breakfast and everyone gathers around to start the day.” — Amanda Gillespie Bray

“Instead of doing an advent calendar, for 24 days in a row I give the same amount of money to a different charity.” — Benjamin Nelson

“Making fruited eggnog bread and gifting it to family and friends. It’s a tradition started by my mom.” — Judith Johnston Smolek “Going to Bluffton parade and then out to a Christmas tree farm as a family to cut one down.” — Brendan Lambrix “A Christmas Eve oyster roast is our family tradition.” — Jane Cordell Harmon “For Christmas, baking my Aunt Dottie’s shortbread cookies. They smell like love and fond memories. For New Year’s Day, we “first-foot” our home. It is an old Scottish tradition for luck and prosperity in the new year. We always use an unopened bottle of champagne to bring cheer throughout the year.” — Resa Barbalich “Letting the youngest pass out the presents and watching them be opened one at the time.” — Patricia Perry

“Putting up the tree the day after Thanksgiving, having a big family breakfast on Christmas Day, opening stockings.” — Beverly Rish Parrish “Opening one gift on Christmas Eve. Saving the rest for Christmas morning.” — Shannon Perry Martinez “My parents’ Christmas Day drop-in, complete with Mom’s homemade, high-octane eggnog (from the Charleston Receipts cookbook). I especially appreciated it when I was home from college and got to catch up with old friends. Unfortunately, my mom isn’t up to it anymore, but maybe someday I’ll revive the tradition.” — Andrea Terrill I love church on Christmas Eve. I’m always so grateful for the chance to stop doing for a moment and be still and listen. — Suzanne Frisch

Let us know what you think. email 12

››Behind the Scenes




IT HAPPENED HERE FIRST A new book by Hilton Head Island resident Richard Thomas highlights Beaufort County’s leading role. A leadership consultant, history buff and former corporate executive, Thomas can add author to his resume. Fittingly, his first book focuses on Lowcountry firsts throughout history. Published by the Heritage Library Foundation, “Backwater Frontier” is a compilation of stories about significant events that took place in Beaufort County and were firsts of their kind in the U.S. “My motive in doing this (book) was really to help get all of these phenomenal stories told,” Thomas said, “... just really get the stories out there in a way that hopefully people find easy to read and informative.” The book covers everything from Pedro Menendez de Aviles and the establishment of Santa Elena to Harriet Tubman and the formation of the Underground Railroad, plus more recent historical firsts like Charles Fraser’s development of Sea Pines.

Clockwise from top left: The Monthly team shared lunch at the office. Account executive Rebecca Kerns and her son William and account executive Majka Mochnac and her son Nicolas Luka enjoyed Concours d’Elegance. Art director Mike Lupi was cheered on by his wife Kristi and daughter Addison when he ran in the Rock ‘n Roll Marathon in Savannah.




Michael is a copywriter from Atlanta who has worked for agencies big and small in New York, Seattle, Chicago and Raleigh. He recently returned to the Lowcountry to enjoy a slower pace, spend time with family and hopefully become a better fisherman.

A New York native, Jackie has been a local since 2005. She loves capturing the beauty of the Lowcountry and the people who live and vacation here. Check out her work at


ANTHONY GARZILLI Anthony Garzilli has 20 years of experience in journalism, covering every aspect of a community: politics, law enforcement, education and athletics. If he’s not listening to Pearl Jam, he’s likely spending too much time on

Read more about Rich Thomas and “Backwater Frontier” at CORRECTION: Our Nov. issue incorrectly reported who could vote in the Sea Pines Community Services Associates, Inc. election of Class “A” residential board directors. Class “A” members are owners of single-family lots, singlefamily dwelling units and multi-family dwelling units.






DEC. 1-2 “A VISIT FROM ST. NICHOLAS” HHSO holiday concert at First Presbyterian. A fun performance featuring holiday favorites with Conductor John Morris Russell.

DEC. 4-29 “KISS ME KATE” The Arts Center of Coastal Carolina presents a romantic comedy and holiday musical performance where a former husband and wife ignite a fiery chemistry onstage and off. U.S. 278

DEC. 6 BLUFFTON TREE LIGHTING At DuBois Park, mayor Lisa Sulka will announce the grand marshal of the Bluffton Christmas parade and town leaders will light the Bluffton Christmas tree. Refreshments will be served at the pavilion, where Santa will greet children.

DEC. 7 ARTISAN MARKET Stop by the Coastal Discovery Museum grounds to enjoy local artisans, storytellers, authors and more, including the South Carolina 2nd Regiment.

DEC. 7 BLUFFTON CHRISTMAS PARADE Watch holiday floats roll through Old Town during the annual Bluffton Christmas Parade. Rain or shine. .

DEC. 14 COFFEE AND CHOCOLATE FEST: Sample and savor some of the best of the Lowcountry’s mouth-watering chocolates and distinctive coffee roasts on Calhoun Street. Free. 16


Former Gov. Mark Sanford dropped out of the presidential race on Nov. 14, saying the focus on impeachment made it difficult for his campaign to gain traction. Sanford had focused his campaign on warnings about the national debt. When he launched his presidential bid over the summer, some questioned whether it was a publicity stunt. Sanford, 59, served three terms in the U.S. House of Representatives in the 1990s, then two four-year terms as governor before an extramarital affair marred the end of his second term. He won a special election to his old House seat in 2013, and was re-elected twice before his criticism of Trump led to a 2018 primary loss.


Political newcomer Bridgette Frazier won a seat on the Bluffton Town Council in the Nov. 5 election. Frazier, 36, is a Hilton Head Island Middle School teacher and small business owner. She promised to focus on Bluffton’s changing identity, over-development,

affordable housing, worker shortages and diversity. She is the daughter of Bluffton’s poet laureate, the late Oscar Frazier.


Beaufort County Council member Steven Baer started a petition in November aimed at halting plans underway for widening bridges and causeways to Hilton Head Island. The petition, which urges the Hilton Head Island Town Council to reject all six proposals being considered by the S.C. Department of Transportation, quickly got 800 signatures. The DOT should go back to the drawing board, the petition says. Posted on, the petition states: “SCDOT has come up with a brute force, $250-$500 million project that can’t be demonstrated to work and will make the north end of the Island resemble a Los Angeles suburb.” The DOT will recommend a final plan for the $240 million project next year. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2023.


Former Beaufort County Council member Jerry Stewart is being investigated following allegations that he lived and voted in another state during his term on council, according to the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division. In October, The Island Packet & Beaufort Gazette reported that Stewart cast votes on county issues and in a South Carolina primary despite living in North Carolina.The newspapers also reported that Stewart was registered to vote in both states — a violation of N.C. law — and had his Beaufort County Council payments mailed to his N.C. home.


Beaufort County voters overwhelmingly approved a $344 million school bond referendum on Nov. 5. Nearly 70 percent of voters approved the measure, the largest bond referendum in the school district’s history. The Beaufort County school board now must select a financial adviser to guide the district’s issuance of bonds. A committee of community volunteers also will be selected to oversee how the money is spent. A website will be set up to allow citizens to track the progress of all referendum projects and review regular reports by the monitoring committee.



Age: 1 Year Breed: Bulldog mix Gender: Female Weight: 58 lbs. Temperament: Extremely affectionate Betty is a pro at snuggling. She came to the shelter after being abandoned during the Hurricane Dorian evacuation and may be partially deaf. But she’s still a young dog so she might just be ignoring orders.



In a controversial decision last month, Beaufort County Council Chairman Stu Rodman eliminated the public comment period previously held at the beginning of council meetings. The decision ends the council’s practice of allowing residents to speak for three minutes about issues on the agenda and for three minutes at the end of meetings about other issues. With the change, those who want to speak about agenda issues will have to wait until the issue is brought up by the council or until the end of the meeting. Rodman was accused of erecting barriers between local government officials and citizens. In June, Rodman recommended that transparency be removed as one of the council’s priorities.

Age: 1 ½ years Breed: Domestic Shorthair Gender: Male Weight: 8 lbs. Temperament: mellow


Tom came to the shelter when his owner could no longer take care of him. He used to live with another cat and a dog and he loves people. Tom is a laid-back boy who likes to look out the window.


SeaWorld Orlando and Clearwater Marine Aquarium Research Institute helped rescue a distressed manatee in Palmetto Dunes Resort on Hilton Head Island in November. The 856-pound manatee had minor skin abrasions and was underweight. She was taken to SeaWorld Orlando for treatment and rehabilitation before being evaluated for return to the wild.


Adopt them at: Hilton Head Humane Association, 10 Humane Way, Hilton Head Island. For more information call 843-681-8686 or go to Join all the animals at Hilton Head Humane’s annual community holiday party from noon-2 p.m. Dec. 8 at the shelter.

To submit a photo of your event for Social Spotlight, email


›› Social Spotlight

Alina Porcelli, Anuska Frey and Blanca Martinez enjoyed Polo 4 Heroes.

A group of Hilton Head friends visited Harold’s Country Club in Yemassee.

The Boys & Girls Club of Jasper County held its biggest annual fundraising event, “Hunt, Fish & Shoot.”

Students from Hilton Head Ballroom Dance Studio competed at the Ballroom Blitz competition in Orlando, Florida, and brought home several trophies and medals. 20

Blufftonians and visitors dined al fresco on Calhoun Street as part of the Bluffton Arts & Seafood Festival.


Hilton Head Island’s first lantern parade lit up the night sky as participants walked on Coligny Beach.

Participants in the annual Hilton Head Bridge Run crossed over Broad Creek on the Cross Island Parkway.

Gia Jaggers, Matei and Mila Porcelli and Sandro Virag swept the Ballroom Blitz competition in Orlando, Fl.

At Coligny Plaza, the second annual Charlifest celebrated the life of Charli Bobinchuck and raised funds for the Charli’s Critter Fund at the Community Foundation of the Lowcountry.

Amanda and Lee Lineberger paraded with a sea turtle lantern at the Island’s first lantern parade.

Dru Brown and Eric Moret cut the ribbon of Island Time Hilton Head vacation rental and property management company. December 2019 21

››Community Connection

After Hurricane Dorian




hen Hurricane Dorian ravaged The Bahamas in early September, a pair of Lowcountry residents reacted swiftly and decisively. The two — Hilton Head Island resident Jane Janiak and state Rep. Bill Herbkersman of Bluffton — had watched uneasily as the devastating storm raked the islands. After seeing what was left behind, they resolved to help the recovery. AID AT EVERY TURN Herbkersman has been a constant presence in The Bahamas since the hurricane, flying supplies aboard his Cessna 182 in to Treasure Cay, which is connected to Great Abaco Island. He has ferried antibiotics, bottled water, blankets, vitamins, Gatorade, tarps and shoes. Since early November, Herbkersman figures he has carried 11 tons of necessities to The Bahamas.


On a weekend trip in November — one of about 20 since the hurricane struck — Herbkersman took 40 to 50 pairs of shoes. The supplies have come from myriad donors, he said. He hasn’t had to ask; people call him and ask what’s needed. On one trip he took 750 bologna sandwiches. “I’m getting help at every turn,” said Herbkersman, who represents parts of Beaufort and Jasper counties in the state legislature. The Medical University of South Carolina pitched in on short notice, too, supplying “a truck full” of cases of antibiotic eyedrops for treating conjunctivitis (pink eye) affecting workers on the islands — including Herbkersman. “It’s humbling,” he said. “I feel fortunate to fly there; (the Lowcountry) could have been in the same boat.” Herbkersman expects to continue flying in supplies through

Opposite page: Rep. Bill Herbkersman of Bluffton flies hurricane relief supplies to the Bahamas. Left: Hope Town Primary School in Elbow Cay, before and after Dorian.

the new year. Round-trip flights cost about $450 in fuel, which he pays himself. For the other volunteers who fly supplies to The Bahamas, donations would be welcome, he said. Janiak, a 27-year Hilton Head resident, owns a second home with her husband on Elbow Cay, and Bluffton developer Herbkersman has property on Cat Island. Dorian, a Category 5 storm, displaced more than 14,000 residents of The Bahamas and caused an estimated $7 billion in damage. Janiak said she felt helpless watching the destruction from Hilton Head, but discovered a way to help after learning about the work of artist Kim Schwede. Schwede designed a print (“The ABC’s of Hope Town”) to benefit badly damaged Hope Town Primary School on Elbow Cay. The print depicts Hope Town mainstays, including a lighthouse that withstood the storm. To raise money for the school, which was built in 1893, Janiak is running an online shop that features the print on an assortment of products. Hosted at, Schwede’s print is on 40

December 2019 23

››Community Connection

items, including serving trays, hoodies, mugs, bath mats and a Christmas ornament that Janiak said is the top seller. During the first three weeks of October, sales raised about $2,300 for the school, Janiak said. All funds after paying for the website will go to the school, with the first check expected to be sent in December. This fundraiser will continue indefinitely, she said. “It’s not that people are just giving money — you’re getting a neat product,” Janiak said. Hope Town Primary School principal Justin Higgs was thrilled about Janiak’s offer to help the school, which normally teaches 70 students each year. “Knowing people are reaching out to us and want to support us is incredible,” Higgs said. The funds will be used for items like library books, projectors and supplies, he said. Debris has been cleared from the school, Higgs said, and one classroom should be ready for returning students in January. To check out Janiak’s shop, go to On Facebook, visit the Hope Town ABC page and click “shop now.”


Hope Town Primary School is the recipient of a fundraiser started by Hilton Head Island resident Jane Janiak, shown here with husband Peter. The Christmas ornament and other items by artist Kim Schwede are for sale at

OTHER EFFORTS Many other organizations contributed to hurricane relief, including: • First Presbyterian Church Hilton Head Island, which provided financial support through a denominational effort. The church’s youth group also took a mission trip to Abaco Islands, an area that experienced damage. • In late October, Palmetto Goodwill donated $15,000 that will be used to buy a reverse osmosis water system and generator. • Hilton Head and Coastal Carolina hospitals held a baby shower drive in November to collect supplies for infants and families.

››Community Connection Generosity is one of the best things about the Lowcountry. Has your business or organization given back to the community? Submit your photos to for this section. Space is limited.


Hilton Head Island fishing captain Michael Perry, owner of “Papa Bear Fishing Charters,” was injured in a hunting accident in November when he fell from a deer stand in Tennessee. The 44-year-old father of two was impaled by a tree and rushed to Vanderbilt University Medical Center for multiple surgeries. Soon after Perry was admitted, his fishing buddies on Hilton Head Island Head started an ongoing GoFundMe page ( page to help with his medical expenses. It raised $70,000 in the first 24 hours.


In November, the Boys & Girls Club of Hilton Head Island’s Torch Club completed a service project to clean up Gumtree Road. Eighteen members of the group, ages 11-13, volunteered for the clean up. They collected 101 pounds of trash.


Low Country Hope House, a sober-living home for women recovering from drug and/or alcohol addiction, is now open in Beaufort. The home accommodates up to seven female residents and a full-time house manager. Low Country Hope House provides routine, structure and rules to help women get back on their feet. For more information, go to



Seven fire stations on Hilton Head Island will have mailboxes for letters to Santa through midDecember. Kids can drop their letters in any of these mailboxes and receive a letter back from Santa. For more information, call 843-682-5141.


Second Helpings has a new truck for food rescue operations. Contributions from the Wexford Charitable Fund, The Heritage Classic Foundation, The Long Cove Foundation, and Belfair 1811 enabled the nonprofit to buy the refrigerated truck. Volunteers pick up food from local grocery stores and deliver it to community agencies and to Palmetto Breeze Transit’s Fill the Need program, which benefits workers who ride Palmetto Breeze buses.


Anna Goebel, a student at University of South Carolina-Beaufort majoring in hospitality management, is one of nine college students who won a S.C. Governor’s Tourism Student Award. She was recognized for outstanding academic achievement in hospitality and tourism studies and received a $1,000 scholarship.


Health clinic opens inside Buckwalter Publix Getting treatment from a doctor is now as easy as picking up a can of chicken noodle soup. Dain Rusk, vice-president of Publix Pharmacy Operations, and Russell Baxley, CEO of Beaufort Memorial Hospital, cut the ribbon on the state’s first Walk-In Care at Publix clinic while hospital Telehealth managers Jon Lohr and Lisa Taylor look on. The new clinic at Buckwalter Place in Bluffton, one of two in the state, gives patients access to board-certified health care providers during pharmacy hours. Visit for more information.


Palmetto Dunes Cares is seeking applications for its 2020 grant program. The Palmetto Dunes Cares Fund is a charitable fund created by property owners in community. In 2020, the grants’ focus will be the environment, health and education. Applications are due by Jan. 15 and available at


Bring a new, unwrapped toy for Bluffton Self Help’s Holiday Toy Shop to the Bluffton Christmas Parade. Collins Group Realty’s elves will pick up these toys as they come down the parade route. The parade is Dec. 7 in Old Town.

in the World ››Where is Monthly?

We love to see where Monthly travels! Submit your photos to for this section. Space is limited.


Jerusalem Monthly travelled to the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem with Rick and Janet Murray, Jody and Rob Reichel, Richard MacDonald and Andra and Craig Ostergard. Photo by Janet MacDonald

Les and Linda Canter took Monthly to the island of Anegada in the British Virgin Islands.

Provence Bruce and Kathy Moody with Monthly on the Rhône River in Provence, France.

Martha’s Vineyard Mike and Joan Joyce pose with Monthly in Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts.

Switzerland Armando Aseneta, Rick Collins and Sandro Virag took Monthly below Matterhorn in Switzerland.

December 2019 27


Historic Holidays




ong before golf courses, tennis courts, sprawling resorts, and rows of beach umbrellas turned Hilton Head Island into a premier vacation destination, something perhaps even more special was woven into the island’s fabric: rich history and a unique culture that still endures. Hilton Head’s cultural past has not only survived but has become a valuable asset for an island whose economic lifeblood is tourism. And like other places blessed with colorful history, Hilton Head increasingly looks to “cultural tourism” as a resource important to the island’s prosperity. Realizing the potential benefits of historically themed events, several island organizations are combining forces this year to present “Historic Holidays on Hilton Head Island, a weekend of Sea Island traditions.” Scheduled for Dec. 6-9, Historic Holidays will combine the Heritage Library’s annual History Day with other activities normally scheduled during the holiday season, plus some brand new events, according to the library’s executive director, Barbara Catenaci.


Historic Holidays on Hilton Head Island is a new weekend-long celebration of Lowcountry cultural traditions. Sweet grass baskets are among the crafts that will be on sale at the artisans’ market.

To stage the Historic Holidays, the Heritage Library is partnering with the Mitchelville Preservation Project, Coastal Discovery Museum, Gullah Museum, the Hilton Head Island Land Trust and the Town of Hilton Head Island’s Office of Cultural Affairs. The thought behind Historic Holidays was to mesh traditional family gatherings that occur during the holidays with a series of events focusing on Hilton Head Island’s role in American history. “They’ll experience traditional food and Gullah culture,” Catenaci said. “There will be tours on Saturday. Zion Chapel of Ease is going to be about the colonial Christmas experience …. Fort Howell on what it was like to be a Civil War soldier during the holidays. Mitchelville will tell about Christmas from the perspective of enslaved people, and from freedmen after the war.”

December 2019 29



Historic Holidays organizers want to entice visitors interested in arts and culture to come during off-peak seasons and hope Historic Holidays on Hilton Head becomes an annual destination event similar to the month-long Gullah Celebration in February and cycling event Pedal Hilton Head. Catenaci said target marketing efforts aim to draw visitors to the events from the all-important drive market. “We’re reaching into Georgia and South Carolina this go ’round,” she said. Events like Historic Holidays are part of a growing trend targeting travelers who seek more than just relaxation on a vacation. They want to learn about the heritage and culture of the places they visit. A 2013 study by Mandala Research & Consulting showed that 60 percent of U.S. leisure travelers were likely to take a cultural/heritage trip, up from 51 percent in a 2009 report. They also spent more: $1,300 per trip in 2013, compared to $994 in 2009. Heritage tourists tend to be well-traveled, older and educated, according to research cited by the Historic Mitchelville Preservation Project. And they spend more per day than other tourists and are more apt to buy art, antiques, gourmet food and wine. Marketing research also shows that women are often the decision makers when a family, couple, or friend group chooses cultural tourism vacation experiences. Culture and heritage tourism is a focus for both the town and the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce. Charlie Clark, the chamber’s vice president of communications,


Historic Holidays on Hilton Head Island

This island-wide celebration of history and culture is Dec. 6-9 and features Lowcountry foods, historic experiences, a holiday market, tours, a Gullah community tree lighting and more. For more information and tickets go to

Friday, Dec. 6 ◊ L owcountry food and traditions. 7 p.m. Hudson’s Seafood on the Docks. Limited admission. Adults, $50; children, $40

Saturday, Dec. 7: ◊ T rolley Tour of Hilton Head Historic Sites. 9:30,10:15 and 11a.m., 1:15 and 2 p.m. Adults, $15; children, $5; children under 12, free. Tours leave from Coastal Discovery Museum. ◊ A rtisan Market. 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. Coastal Discovery Museum. Adults, $10; children, $2; children under 12, free.

Sunday, Dec. 8: ◊ C entral Oak Grove Missionary Baptist Church. 10 a.m. Weekly service with traditional gospel choir. Annual Candlelight Communion Service at 5 p.m. ◊ H istoric Queen Chapel AME Church. 1 p.m. A Christmas story read in the Gullah dialect, carols with the choir. Gumbo will be sold. ◊ C ivil War tour by bicycle. 11:00 a.m., noon, 1 and 2 p.m. $25 or $35 if bicycles are rented. Tours start at Port Royal clubhouse.

Monday, Dec. 9: ◊ R esearch your roots with Heritage Library genealogists. 11 a.m.- 2 p.m. Free with any Historic Holiday event ticket; otherwise $5. ◊ L ighting of the Big Oak Tree. 5:30 p.m. Mitchelville Freedom Pa rk. free

said that in addition to appealing to vacationers, arts and cultural opportunities also are important to the lucrative group market. “People are going to come for the beach and the amazing golf courses, bird trails and bike pathways, but there are amazing opportunities to participate in arts and culture, too” said Jenn McEwen, the town’s director of cultural affairs. “It doesn’t have to be one or the other. We have it all here.”

December 2019 31



December 2019 33


Giving Generously




ith the passage of federal tax cuts and the Jobs Act in late 2017, nonprofits held their collective breath to see how charitable giving would be impacted. They worried that contributions would decrease as a result of the higher standard deductions allowed under the new tax law. The old law allowed standard deductions of $6,350 for individuals and $12,700 for married couples filing jointly; the new law nearly doubled that, raising the standard deductions to $12,000 and $24,000, respectively. While most people’s interest in philanthropy isn’t driven by tax considerations, charitable organizations feared the worst because the tax incentive to give had been eliminated for many taxpayers.


According to the National Philanthropic Trust, Americans gave $427.71 billion to charitable organizations in 2018, an increase of 0.7% over 2017 giving levels. Interestingly, the Urban Institute reports that there are a total of 1.5 million charitable organizations in the United States. To those, a majority of charitable contributions went to religious organizations (29%), educational institutions (14%), human service providers (12%), grant-making foundations (12%), and finally, health services firms (9%). Some early evidence suggests that the Tax Reform Act did depress charitable giving by individuals. Of the total $428 billion contributed in 2018, corporate giving increased to $20.5 billion or 5.4% more than in 2017, and foundation giving increased to $75.86 billion, 7.3% more than in 2017. Since total giving was

only up 0.7%, simple math indicates that individual giving declined in 2018. We should be cautious, however, in concluding that a one-year decline can be attributed to an increase in the standard deduction. Let’s dig a little deeper into who is contributing and supporting charitable causes and how they provide their support. The Indiana University Lilly School of Philanthropy’s biannual survey in 2018 showed that 90% of all “high net worth” households in the U.S. gave to charity, with donors contributing an average of $29,000 annually. This level of giving compares to about $2,500 per year given by “general population households.” An interesting side note is that charitable giving appears to be a learned trait, as adults are far more likely to become givers if their parents gave. “Donor-advised funds” have become the vehicle of choice for high net worth families for distributing their philanthropic dollars. In 2018, there were 463,622 donoradvised accounts, according to the National Philanthropic Trust. These funds held roughly $110 billion in assets and dispersed $29 billion in 2017, the latest year for which data is available. Anyone interested in creating a donor-advised fund can get assistance through the Community Foundation of the Lowcountry here on Hilton Head Island. Another way Americans contribute to charitable organizations is through volunteering. Every year approximately 77 million Americans, 30% of our adult population, donate their time and talents and make a difference. To put a number on this, the Corporation for National and Community Service calculates that the national value of volunteer time is $24.69 per hour. The total value of volunteer hours donated to American communities is $167 billion over and above dollars contributed. Volunteer hours were spent supporting religious institutions (32%), sports, hobbies and the arts (26%) and youth mentoring (26%). According to “Giving USA,” the longest running, most comprehensive report on philanthropy in America, philanthropy in the the United States accounted for 2.1% of our gross national product in 2018. In Beaufort County giving opportunities abound, with a total of 1,412 non-profit and 501C3 organizations filing tax-exempt status in 2019. These organizations report almost $600 million in total assets and $326 million in total income. The bottom line appears to be that American philanthropy is alive and well for both corporations and individuals.

Elihu Spencer is a local amateur economist with a long business history in global finance. His life work has been centered on understanding credit cycles and their impact on local economies. The information contained in this article has been obtained from sources considered reliable but the accuracy cannot be guaranteed.

December 2019 35

Shop More Local Charity Begins at Home The Local Lady

Meredith DiMuzio


By Carrie Hirsch


he Lowcountry is home to many nonprofit organizations that support the needs of youth in our community in various ways. Among them are these three Shop More Local members.



mall-scale, locally owned businesses create communities that are more prosperous, entrepreneurial, connected and generally better off. How we choose to spend our money matters. Do we want the Lowcountry to be “Anywhere, USA,” where chain stores and corporate behemoths dominate? Or do we want to live in a community with a rich, unique character created by the locally owned boutiques, stores, bakeries, restaurants and galleries— businesses run by knowledgeable local residents who care about and are invested in our area? Here at, our mission is simple: Advocate for local businesses, stress the importance of supporting locally owned businesses, and help business owners remain competitive. Join us in the fight to keep Hilton Head Island unique and to strengthen the Bluffton state of mind! #keepitlocalyall

shop more local


Al Olivetti Founder and director Go Tri Gives Award-winning athlete Al Olivetti is always ready to share his expertise with fellow athletes and beginners alike as owner of Go Tri Sports. Olivetti established Go Tri Gives in 2012 to enable youth in the community to participate in athletic and educational programs. “We launched Go Tri Gives as an official charitable arm to our other businesses, Go Tri Sports and Go Tri Events and, now, the Hilton Head Running Company. These businesses have always donated a portion of their profits to local charities, but we created a nonprofit to have a more focused mission. Allowing young people the opportunity to participate in athletic or academic programs fosters their selfworth. An example of this may be a local coach who tells us that a young athlete doesn’t have the resources to participate in a program, so we step in and cover the costs or provide the equipment necessary.”

For more information, go to

Dr. Sulek is the Upper School Mathematics Department chair at Hilton Head Preparatory School and the school’s basketball coach. His organization, Brain Gain, will soon celebrate its 20th anniversary. “Brain Gain was an offshoot of a program I started at Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, where I was asked to start an Honors College within the university with its own faculty and curriculum. One of our tenets was to have a strong community service and justice component included in our graduation requirements. I received a $250,000 grant to begin an after-school program for at-risk, lowincome middle school kids in our neighborhood. The program began in 1989 in Charlotte and I brought it to Hilton Head Prep in 2002 as ‘Brain Gain’. My goal was to target low-income, high-achieving teens in our area.”

Dr. Robert “Bob” P. Sulek, Ed. Founder and director, Brain Gain

For more information, call 843-290-8844.

A friend who had started Heroes on Horseback years earlier mentioned to Lee that the organization needed a new executive director. Lee, retired from a career in manufacturing and banking, didn’t know much about horses, but was hooked after seeing how equine therapy helped special-needs children and adults.

Robert “Bob” Lee Executive director Heroes on Horseback

“Equine therapy addresses the physical, emotional, and mental challenges of special-needs children and adults, and disabled veterans and their families. Benefits range from increased confidence, improved concentration, better self-awareness and self-discipline to improved posture, balance, strength, flexibility and hand/eye coordination. The horse provides freedom of movement and excitement that no clinical setting can duplicate. It’s not uncommon to hear from families about how much better their loved ones are communicating, walking, and performing in school or at work because of their participation in our program. Our team is so passionate about how we can change lives, but what we all learn is that our lives are changed, too.”

For more information, go to

Support Main Street. Not Wall Street. Don’t miss out! Sign up for our newsletter at for local events, activities, specials and more!

››On the Move

Carol Eddy

Lindsay H. Edwards


Carol Eddy has joined H.O.P.E. Life, Lymphedema and Rehabilitation Center. She is a board-certified clinical specialist in oncologic physical therapy and has specialized in oncology rehabilitation and lymphedema management since 1999. Previously, she worked with a team of medical providers at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center at the University of Texas.


Silver Station, a social club founded by Stevie Klein for people 55 and older, is now open in Bluffton. The organization seeks to improve the lives of seniors in our community. Their all-inclusive membership allows seniors to have a place to socialize, learn and support one another. Silver Station will offer fitness classes, educational events, social and gaming clubs, emotional support groups and more.


Stevie Klein

Nancy Apy

Island Time


Nancy Apy has purchased Encore Consignments and changed the name to Koi Consignments. Apy plans to add new clothing and accessories to the shop in the near future. Koi Consignments is located at 19D Dunnagans Alley.


SmartMarketing Communications is raffling off a year of free marketing and branding services from the firm for 2020. Small businesses, start-ups and entrepreneurs can enter through an online entry form. Entries will be accepted through Jan. 2 at or find them on Facebook.


Lindsay H. Edwards is the new director of sales at Vineyard Bluffton, a 96-bed facility including memory care and owned by Valeo, LLC. Edwards has a bachelor’s degree in organizational and interpersonal communications from Kent State University and more than 10 years of sales and marketing experience.


Long-time vacation rental industry executive Dru Brown and business partner Eric Moret recently launched Island Time Hilton Head. The business will focus on providing excellent experiences for guests and owners. Its personalized service and technology leads to better management of properties and more satisfied home owners.


Four Corners Fine Art Gallery and Framing has added 1,300 square feet by expanding into the former location of Stock Farm Antiques. Four new artists also have joined the gallery. Four Corners will hold an open house from 2-6 p.m. on Dec. 8 and all are welcome. The gallery is at 1263 B May River Road in Bluffton.


The Bluestone at 4921 Bluffton Parkway in Bluffton has been purchased by Continental Realty Corp., a Baltimore-based real estate investment and management company. The 360-unit multifamily apartment community sold for $69.3 million on Oct. 28. The asset was purchased from a joint venture between The Carlyle Group and Blaze Partners.


The Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce’s business education partnership committee helps enhance the quality of education in the Lowcountry by creating and supporting partnerships between local businesses and schools. Project Connect is a community-wide program that connects community businesses and individuals with teachers and their wish lists for classroom supplies. Since the program’s inception, over $35,000 has been used to purchase needed school supplies. If you would like to donate an item from a teacher’s wish list, contact 843785-3673.


The Don Ryan Center for Innovation, in partnership with Savannah’s innovation center The Creative Coast, will begin raising venture capital for regional start-up companies thanks to a $300,000 federal grant from the Regional Innovation Strategies Program/ Seed Fund Support Competition. The federal grant program aims to create regionally-based funds to support and expand high growth entrepreneurship and increase access to capital in communities nationwide. The name of the venture fund will be “The Bridge Fund.” December 2019 39







he world’s first community foundation was set up in Cleveland, Ohio in 1914. Eight decades later, the Lowcountry established one of its own, seeded with $20 million from the sale of Hilton Head Hospital. Now, with a quarter century under its belt, Community Foundation of the Lowcountry continues to grow, having invested more than $82 million in grants and scholarships since 1994. “Our mission is to strengthen community by connecting people, resources and needs,” says Chris Kerrigan, president and CEO of the foundation. Community foundations are tax-exempt, nonprofit, nonsectarian philanthropic organizations that support charitable interests and benefit residents in a defined geographic area. Founded to serve Hilton Head Island, Bluffton and Daufuskie

September 2, 1994


Hilton Head Island Foundation, Inc. was formed through the sale of Hilton Head Hospital

Grants guidelines were developed and first grants were awarded.



Island in 1994, the foundation expanded in 2001 to include northern Beaufort County and neighboring Colleton, Hampton and Jasper counties. “Each community foundation is geared specifically toward the needs of its community,” Kerrigan says. “The needs here in the Lowcountry are different than in Boulder (Colorado), New York or Los Angeles. We’re really here to serve this community.” Community Foundation of the Lowcountry constantly engages with the community, allowing it to focus on the most pressing needs. For example, the foundation gave more than $200,000 in grants for rebuilding in the wake of Hurricane Matthew in 2016. The foundation has nearly completed a $3 million campaign, Project Safe, to help low-income residents connect to the public sewer system.





Community Joan and Wade Hilton Head Island Surpassed Long Cove PEARLS of Webster established Foundation launches expansion leads the $10 Community Hampton to a name change the Community Endowment million in Endowment Fund is County is to Community grantmaking. established; Women established. Foundation’s first Challenge 2000 to in Philanthropy is scholarship. build local nonprofit Foundation of the Lowcountry. established. endowments.

4 Northridge Drive, Suite A, Hilton Head Island, SC 29926 | 843-681-9100 |


“Compromised by the high water table and dense underground root systems, some (area) septic systems are producing an overflow of contaminated waste water that threatens the safety and beauty of our island home,” according to the foundation. In 2017, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development recognized Project Safe with a HUD Secretary’s Award for public-philanthropic partnerships. “Sewer may not be sexy,” Kerrigan says. “But it’s something that really impacts everybody in this region.” A key part of the foundation’s mission is to help local residents fulfill their philanthropic passions by establishing funds that are not just easy to set up and manage, but also provide tax benefits. “We are a community with a lot of retired people who have a lot of wealth — not just financial wealth, but intellectual and experiential wealth,” Kerrigan says. “They are willing to give, both financially and with time. We are really fortunate here.”







Current president and CEO of Community Foundation of the Lowcountry Chris Kerrigan and former CFL heads Diane Hopstetter and Denise Spencer enjoyed the organization’s 25th birthday party at Honey Horn.





Jasper The first Received Surpassed Assets top More than $58 New logo Project SAFE Disaster Denise Spencer Community Public Art largest individ$50 million in $70 million million in unveiled initiative recovery and retires; new Endowment Exhibition ual gift to date to grantmaking. grants and undertaken rebuilding grants president and Fund is on Hilton establish The Jim scholarships have for Hurricane CEO Christopher established. Head Island and Margaret Krum been awarded Matthew reach Kerrigan named is held. Foundation. ± $216,000






















his month Bruno Landscape & Nursery will be celebrating 30 years in business on Hilton Head Island. A small landscape business started by Gary and Mary Ann Bruno in 1989 has blossomed into a booming operation that has far exceeded their expectations. Their once young children (Steven, Jenna & Nikki), who tagged along from job site to job site, are now all working in the family business. Steven Bruno, Nikki and Rafael Rodriguez (married to Nikki) who were once young teens working summers are

now playing essential roles in operating the Bruno business. As the Bruno children grew, so did their business. After only 11 years, Mary Ann and Gary decided to add a retail nursery and the name changed from Bruno Landscape & Irrigation to Bruno Landscape & Nursery. This name better fit their expanding services, which now includes retail, hardscape and landscape construction. The 4-acre property that was once a small plant only nursery is now run by daughter-in-law Jordan Bruno and is an amazing garden center.

The Bruno family is very thankful for their customers and community. “Both the community and our customers helped raise our children and have been there for us for the past 30 years,” Mary Ann Bruno said. “We try to stay involved in our community and we are grateful for many of the organizations that contribute to the well-being of our family and work staff,” said Jenna (Bruno) Hull, who helps run the office. The Bruno family is honored to be able to give back to various local charities

109 Dillon Rd, Hilton Head Island, SC 29926 | 843-682-2624 |

and organizations throughout the year. The Bruno’s thankfulness doesn’t stop there … they are very thankful for their amazing staff. What began as a husband and wife team and one truck has grown into a thriving business with a full time staff of 45. Gary Bruno, whose main focus is the construction side, has had some of the same employees working alongside him for over 20 years. “Anyone who knows Gary knows he’s a worker and his guys carry the same amount of energy and dedication as he does.” said Mary Ann. P




The maintenance division, too, has been fortunate to have a dedicated team and many of the workers have been with the company over 10 years. “With the current labor shortage, having good staff is a blessing, for sure,” said Jenna Hull. Many of the maintenance employees joined the team under the supervision of Mark Nizolek, Mary Ann’s brother in law. Sadly, Mark lost his battle with pancreatic cancer last September and is missed by all. “We are blessed to have be surrounded in our business with our children, family and friends” said Mary N








Ann Bruno, “It is during this celebration of our business that we remember all of the people that helped us in the success of our business .. including those we have lost along the way.” Bruno Landscape is truly a family affair of hard work and love that extends to the entire staff. As a thank you Bruno will be offering 30% off all Poinsettias or 30% off one item in the nursery through December 31, 2019. OFFER EXCLUDES CHRISTMAS TREES, LABOR AND DELIVERY NOT INCLUDED, CANNOT BE COMBINED WITH ANY OTHER DISCOUNTS.








hirty-eight years ago John Whidden handcrafted a wooden rocking giraffe for his niece’s first birthday. Since then, the Hilton Head Island resident has made several more rocking giraffes, as well as rocking cows, goats, horses, pigs, a camel, a bull and a burro. He also made a couple of motorcycles, specially ordered for friends. Over the years, Whidden has sold a few of his creations but has given away most of them, either as gifts or donations to charities. His most recent donation was a goat that was sold at a silent auction put on by the Hilton Head Island Sunset Rotary Club, where he is a member. “It’s not like a business to me,” John said. “It’s a hobby. It keeps me out of trouble.” After Whidden and his wife, Linda, moved to Hilton Head Island from Ellington, Conn., they gave the business a name — Rockin’ in the Lowcountry. The animals have names, too. There’s Jasper the Cow, Billie the Goat, Magnolia the Mare, Babe the Pig and Beaufort the Burro. They each come signed and with individual birth certificates. Right now, John is working on his first rocking bear.


December 2019 45


He was introduced to woodworking as a young boy. Growing up on the outskirts of Portland, Maine, he was surrounded by woods. His father was a woodworker and had a shop full of tools, so John learned early on how to swing a hammer and use a lathe. At age 5, he asked some construction workers if he could help them with the church they were building down the street from his home. “That was fun,” he said with a chuckle, remembering an incident with his neighborhood buddies. He and the boys used to love building Soap Box Derby racers and forts in the woods. One day they decided to build their own log cabin. When they finished, they decided a fireplace would be a nice addition. The got an unpleasant surprise


when they lit their first fire: the cabin went up in flames. Despite that unfortunate start, John kept on building things. He had successful careers working in aerospace engineering and construction management. He also taught classes at a vocational school and built a few homes while still in Connecticut. Most days, John can be found in the workshop of his two-car garage at his home in Hilton Head Plantation. Even in the brutal heat of Lowcountry summers, he’ll spend six hours at a time working in the garage, staying hydrated with lots of water and Gatorade. He listens to 1950s and 1960s rock, old country, bluegrass and some 1940s music while he works away on his creations. John — who is highly organized — has the process down to a science, never leaving his workbench cluttered or tools out overnight. At the end of each day, he vacuums and cleans up the garage before pulling the cars back in. The only part of his work that John could do without is unraveling macrame cord, which he uses as the animals’ hair. “The camel had about 50,000 on him,” John said. “I’ll never make another one of these.” Linda helps John with his hobby, coming up with new ideas and picking up supplies for him. She also has her own business, Moose Maid Mittens. While John’s workshop is in the garage, hers is in the dining room. She makes mittens she calls “Smittens” from recycled wool sweaters lined with fleece. Linda also has done an excellent job documenting John’s work with pictures and even picture books. When John is not working in his shop, he can be found on the golf course. “I can’t sit around doing nothing,” he said. “That’s just something I can’t do.” To purchase a rocking animal from Rockin’ in the Lowcountry, call John at 860-539-6492 or email He usually needs two or three weeks to complete an order.

December 2019 47







n Hilton Head Island, there are parties and there are parties. That second type is the kind that people look forward to all year long. They mark their calendars well in advance, arrange for babysitters, and watch the days roll by as their excitement builds. Paula Traver’s annual Christmas do is just such a party. “I love being with my family and my friends, and I am very blessed to have so many wonderful friends down here,” Traver said. Lavishly decorated and boasting a gourmet spread of specially prepared cuisine, her annual shindig’s guest list has grown over the years to well over 100. Preparations begin the day after Thanksgiving, when Traver and her family pull out Christmas décor that occupies roughly a third of their spacious attic. Then they get to work decking the halls with countless trinkets, wreaths, garlands and seasonal delights, to say nothing of three 12-foot Christmas trees, each with its own theme and colors. “Every year I mix it up. I have a huge snowman collection that moves from room to room each year,” Traver said. “When the family arrives we have a contest where you count how many snowmen are in the house.” Last year there were 105 and Traver plans to add more this year. The centerpiece of the whole affair is an 80-piece Christmas village, a beautifully crafted landscape of small-town charm that takes Traver three days to assemble.

December 2019 49




“That’s the biggest labor of love there is,” she said. Outside, Traver has Branches in the Village at Wexford set the mood with delightful swags and wreaths donning every tree, bush and door. “I’m very proud of how the house comes together,” she said. “It takes a lot of time, but it’s all worth it.” With the stage set, it’s time to welcome the legion of guests who attend. One part cookie swap, one part gift exchange, and several parts old-fashioned festival of cheer, Traver pulls out all the stops for her annual fete. The pastries and cookies in the accompanying photos came from Carrie Castano of Custom Confections in Bluffton, and for everything else there’s her family’s own traveling chef, son-in-law Gerrard Ball. The husband of daughter Jillian, he flies in every year from London to oversee the kitchen.

December 2019 51


Realtor Paula Traver decorates her Hilton Head Island home with countless trinkets, wreaths, garlands and three 12-foot Christmas trees. And then she throws a huge party every year.


“It’s a British afternoon tea theme, so everything’s authentic,” Traver said. “I have a good team in place and I’m very blessed that the whole family chips in.” While it’s a team effort, the result is a legendary party that has earned Traver the nickname, “The Queen of Christmas.” “If my legacy is to be known as the Queen of Christmas, I will wear the tiara proudly,” she said.

December 2019 53

Replenish, repair, and boost your complexion with this power packed moisturizing night cream. Bluffton Aesthetics 843.505.0584

Spartina 449 Greetings From Paris scout wristlet. Spartina 449 843.342.7722

r e b m e c De

Gift Guide

Statement necklace and ruby earings by Lori Weitzner. J. Banks Design Group 843.681.5122


Wilson Clash 100 tennis racquet. Player's World of Sports 843.842.5100

Reversible shawl with heart cord necklace. Aiden Lane 843.321.4200

Ananda pets full spectrum hemp extract to keep your furry friends healthy and happy. Burke’s Main Street Pharmacy 843.681.2622

New artist and sculptor Copper Tritschiller. Birds are bronze setting on a fiddlehead, grass blade and flower bud. Four Corners Gallery 843-757-8185

December 2019 55

Stunning Consuela bag‌leather and leopard never looked so good. Gifted Hilton Head 843.842.8787

Feather earrings, handmade in the Lowcountry. Additional styles available. Gigi's Boutique 843.815.4450

Aunt Sadie's handpoured candles from Vermont with a burn time of 70 hours. It smells like a fresh pine tree. Antiques & Garden Collectibles Shop at The Greenery 843.592.3759 Whipped honey fine sea salt body polish. Faces Day Spa The Village at Wexford 843.785.3075

Santevia mineralized alkaline water power stick. Good Health Unlimited 843.802.2029

20% off Lumen skin care this holiday season. Use promo code: Holiday20. LUX Medical Spa 843.757.3223


Roberto Coin princess flower 18K white gold diamond and ruby large pendant on 16.5-18" chain. Forsythe Jewelers 843.671.7070

Browns Backers or Ohhio T-shirts from Street Meet. Street Meet 843.842.2570

Handcrafted with antiqued copper and glass in New York by Ben’s Garden. Cocoon 843.815.3315

December 2019 57

Barbour Hartan gilet vest. Outside Hilton Head 843.686.6996

Handcrafted soy candles by Bedrock Tree Farm. The Green Thumb 843.715.2908

Indoor textured poofs . Coastal Home 843.837.4100

Sterling silver and 14k yellow gold accented bracelets. Four different styles to choose from. Brown sugar bourbon tastes both sweet and indulgent. Strong notes of cinnamon and brown sugar combine to create a classic whiskey warmth like no other.

Heritage Fine Jewelry 843.689.2900

Rollers Wine & Spirits 843.842.1200

Catch and Count fishing game. Hilton Head Toys 843.785.9998

Stuffed Jake dog. Available in both small and large. Salty Dog 843.842.6331


Go green with arts and crafts for your little ones. Moonlit Lullaby 843.837.6666

Handcrafted pottery. The Art Café 843.785.5525

This little bluebird of happiness from Michael Carr Pottry will brighten anyone’s garden or window all year long. Bruno’s Landscape & Nursery 843.682.2624

December 2019 59

Give an Experience

Relax and Restore $75

Enjoy a 60-minute custom massage or signature facial including complimentary aromatherapy. The Art of Massage and Yoga Therapy |

Free Stretch Demo

Practitioner assisted stretching. Call and schedule your free demo today. 843-715-9352. Stretch Zone |


Virtual Reality Arcade

Experience the island's only virtual reality arcade. Fun for all ages. Starts at $25. Atomic VR |

Hilton Head Helicopter Tours

Hilton Head Helicopter tours start as low as $39. Fly over the beautiful beaches of the Lowcountry. Hilton Head Helicopters |

Plants Over Pills $50

It is time to take back your health. A wide variety of tinctures, balms, elderberry elixir and health products are all made in our apothecary. The Herb Room Organic Apothecary |

Comedy Magic Cabaret $75

An evening of comedy and magic (funny not filthy) includes 2 admissions and shared dessert. Reservations required. Comedy Magic Cabaret |

1-Hour Guided Trail Ride on Horseback $65 Hit the trails and explore the Lowcountry on horseback. Lawton Stables |

Guided Dolphin & History Tours $250 A 25-mile tour that will truly amaze you and your guest. Island Skiff Adventure Tours |

December 2019 61



A good book makes a great holiday present, and a book by a local author is even better. Give someone you love the gift of learning about the Lowcountry this holiday season.

“Vivid: Living Life In Full Color” BY JEFFREY KEEFER

After Jeffrey Keefer was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, he developed an interest in photography and poetry. The retired chief financial officer and executive vice president at DuPont Company used his newfound hobbies to create a book to raise money for research. Keefer’s book features aerial drone videos that readers can watch using Snap Click technology. Proceeds go to the Michael J. Fox Foundation, where Keefer is chairman of the board; Hilton Head Heroes and the Sea Pines Forest Preserve. “I hope people enjoy the pictures,” Keefer said. He also hopes the book will bring some cheer to people fighting chronic illness. The book can be found at VIVID Gallery, at local gift stores and at

“Sallie Ann Robinson’s Kitchen: Food And Family Lore From The Lowcountry” BY SALLIE ANN ROBINSON

Celebrity chef Sallie Ann Robinson just released her third cookbook, which includes a mix of old and new recipes, as well as stories about her Gullah ancestors and her childhood on Daufuskie Island. The cookbook can be found at several local stores, including NeverMore Books, The Storybook Shoppe and By Hand, Ink.



The leather-bound coffee table book features an introduction from the publisher, Lydia Inglett, and a collection of essays and photos that tell stories of “ramblin’ around the South.” "Whether you’re from the South or you just got here as soon as you could, you’ll enjoy the stories and the photographs of beautiful places ... and just the essence of home that the South holds for a lot of people,” The Bluffton Sun editor Lynne Hummell said. The book can be purchased at local gift stores and at


This book is a great resource for anyone wanting to learn about the history of Hilton Head Island. It includes almost 200 photos and a timeline of the island’s history, from 450 million years ago to the Cross Island Parkway’s opening in 1998. “I think what’s fun about it is you can learn a nice overview ... and get a glimpse into the early history,” Coastal Discovery Museum vice president of programs Natalie Hefter said. The book can be found at the museum and on Amazon.

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Come Party With Us! Food & Drinks • Giveaways • Live Music & More!

Thursday, December 5th 5:30 pm - 9:00 pm Sonesta Resort Hilton Head Island Buy tickets now for $20 at or $25 at the door. Sponsored by:














Readers' Choice Party at Sonesta Resort & Spa HHI 5:30pm – 9:00pm


MONTHLY CELEBRATES LOCAL BUSINESSES AND COMMUNITIES WITH THE 2019 READERS’ CHOICE AWARDS. Are you looking for the best of the Lowcountry? You’ll find it here. These are the “best of the best” places to shop, dine, live, party and more, as voted by you, our readers. If you don’t find your favorites here, make sure to cast your ballot next year. Congratulations to this year’s winners, and special thanks to all who voted.



APPETIZER Hilton Head: Frankie Bones: The app menu at Frankie Bones offers hit after hit, from calamari to their delectable cheesy garlic bread. Bluffton: Calhoun Street Tavern: Their starters are bangin’ — from the fried green tomatoes with pimento cheese, bacon, and “comeback” sauce to the hushpuppy waffle with goat cheese and pepper jelly — and they’re $2 off from 4 to 6 p.m. on weekdays.

BARBECUE Hilton Head: Bullies: Slow-cooked to perfection and served in the ultimate no-frills environment, Bullies is the clear favorite among locals. Bluffton: Bluffton BBQ: No frills, just good ’cue. Ted Huffman keeps his winning streak alive with his succulent ribs and generous sandwiches served on Texas toast.

BURGER Hilton Head: Charbar Co.: Was there ever any doubt? Juicy and delicious, Charbar’s burgers rake in awards left and right, and for good reason. Bluffton: Old Town Dispensary: Whether you pick one of their custom burgers — the Southern Slammer is a winning choice — or just a plain ol’ cheeseburger, you won’t be disappointed.

BURRITO Hilton Head: Java Burrito Company: They say the key to success is to do one thing and do it well. Java Burrito does two things, coffee and burritos, and they crush it at both. Bluffton: Amigos: If you can talk yourself out of their famous barbecue chicken salad, their “killer” burritos are big and bursting with flavor.

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Hilton Head: Duck Donuts: It’s impossible to overstate what a big deal it was when this south end eatery opened and changed islanders’ mornings forever. They’ve kept the hype train rolling on the strength of their delectable doughnuts.


Hilton Head: Chocolate Canopy: The island’s go-to spot for mouth-watering sweets has earned its spot among the elite confectioners of Hilton Head. Bluffton: Kilwins: A classic, old-fashioned confectionery with chocolates, fudge and ice cream to satisfy your sweet tooth.


Bluffton: Alljoy Donut Co.: Bill Ellis and his team are 2-for-2 since setting up shop in Old Town, where folks line up out the door to grab their delicious doughnuts.



Hilton Head: Rockfish Seafood & Steaks: Every Tuesday night, islanders flock to Rockfish for all the supremely tasty crab legs they can eat. Who says you can’t have quantity and quality?

Hilton Head: Greek 2 Me: A Greek restaurant winning for French fries? This cross-continental surprise comes as no shocker to anyone who’s tried their Mediterranean take on a classic. Opa!

Bluffton: Captain Woody’s: Snag a 2-pound order of Alaskan snow crab legs with drawn butter and lemon and get cracking.

Bluffton: The Pearl Kitchen & Bar: The truffled steak fries at this stylish Calhoun Street spot are the perfect complement to one of their mouth-watering steaks.


Hilton Head: Publix: Publix didn’t just grow into a regional juggernaut on its strengths as a grocer. It led with quality baked goods and deli cuisine, and fried chicken built their fame. Bluffton: Cahill’s Market & Chicken Kitchen: As fresh as it gets. Johnny Cahill’s famous Chicken Kitchen serves scrumptious bird, raised right out back.

HEALTHY MENU Hilton Head: Delisheeyo: Guiltfree and always fresh, Delisheeyo offers up the kind of healthy cuisine that pleases even the pickiest of eaters. Bluffton: Chow Daddy’s: Sure, you’ll need the willpower to avoid some of their more decadent options, but the menu has plenty of tasty, healthy alternatives that will satisfy your taste buds and your waistline.

ICE CREAM/ GELATO Hilton Head: Hilton Head Ice Cream: No surprise here – their signature salt air-infused flavors have helped Hilton Head Ice Cream’s fame spread far beyond our shores. Bluffton: Ben & Jerry’s: Vermont’s own socially-conscious classic right on the Promenade. Peace, Love and Ice Cream.


Hilton Head: Aunt Chilada’s: On Hilton Head Island, there’s perhaps no more hotly contested title than that of best margarita. As such, Aunt Chilada’s should be proud that their sublime margaritas emerged as the victor. Bluffton: Agave: Grab one of the world-class margaritas, made only with Patron tequila, and do a little people-watching on the Calhoun Street Promenade.

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Hilton Head: Old Oyster Factory: Oysters are quite literally their middle name, and the bedrock of their business. It’s only natural that Old Oyster Factory’s are the best.


Hilton Head: The Purple Cow: Anyone with a sweet tooth knows the Purple Cow as their happy place, and the milk shakes are a thick, creamy dream come true. Bluffton: Cheeburger, Cheeburger: With their seemingly infinite list of ingredients to add to your shake, there are over 1,000 possible combinations. Get shakin’.


Bluffton: Bluffton Oyster Company: They’ve been plucking oysters fresh from the May River for your shucking pleasure since Bluffton was a state of mind.

PIZZA Hilton Head: Dough Boys: The runaway favorite among locals, Dough Boys brings a little slice of authentic pizza to Hilton Head Island. Bluffton: Local Pie: Wood-fired Neapolitan-style pizzas featuring topnotch ingredients, cooked right in front of you in a stylish space.


Hilton Head: Island Bagel: Warm, crusty and baked to perfection, Island Bagel’s creations are the perfect platform on which to build a tasty sandwich. Bluffton: Downtown Deli: So many great sandwiches to choose from, but if you haven’t tried The Rachel — a turkey Reuben with house-made slaw and swiss on rye — you’re missing out.


Hilton Head: Wise Guys: They may be best known for their steaks and small plates, but Wise Guys secretly has a slider game that definitely punches above its weight. Bluffton: One Hot Mama’s: Mama Orchid’s sliders — pork, brisket, or burger — will knock your socks off.


Hilton Head: Healthy Habit: Operating from the notion that healthy food doesn’t have to be boring, Healthy Habit creates flavor-forward salads that satisfy. Bluffton: Truffles: Their entree salads are big and filled with top quality ingredients. The Southwestern salad is especially satisfying.

Hilton Head: Crane’s Tavern: At the risk of editorializing, you definitely made the right choice here. Crane’s Tavern is selective about its steaks, and the results are legendary. Bluffton: The Bluffton Room: The signature menu item is The Trilogy, featuring three of the very best steaks plus fatted potatoes, creamed spinach and Madeira mushrooms.

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SUSHI Hilton Head: Hinoki: Chef Chi Chi is an icon on Hilton Head Island, and his genius with sushi is only matched by his rapport with customers. Bluffton: Kobe: Every option under the sun… er, sea… at a price that encourages adventure. Snag three or four rolls to share.



Hilton Head: Aunt Chilada's: Also taking home the award for best margarita, Aunt Chilada’s delivers the best taco on the island.

Hilton Head: Healthy Habit: So fresh you can watch the ingredients grow. And their new kiosks are changing the face of healthy lunches.

Bluffton: Amigos: Their “holy” tacos will make you say “holy cow,” and the baja fish tacos are some of the most authentic around.

Bluffton: Saigon Café: Introducing the Lowcountry to the taste of Vietnam, one steaming bowl of pho noodle soup at a time.


Hilton Head: Reilley's Grill & Bar: On an island renowned for a wealth of wings places, Reilley’s Grill & Bar is a south-end sleeper that takes the top prize this year. Bluffton: One Hot Mama’s: Mama Orchid’s return to Bluffton has shaken up the wing scene. Get ‘em grilled or fried in one of their signature flavors, like 2019 Wingfest winner Hawaii Five-O.


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Hilton Head: OKKO: Teppanyaki or sushi, Okko has long been the local favorite for delectable Asian cuisine.

Hilton Head: French Bakery: This long-time favorite hit the next level when it moved out to Shelter Cove, and continued to serve up heavenly baked goods.

Hilton Head: Sonesta: Check in for inspired cocktails at Sonesta and enjoy a sophisticated atmosphere that locals and visitors have embraced.

Bluffton: The Cottage: Save room for dessert or stop by between meals for a special treat on Bluffton’s favorite front porch.

Bluffton: Montage Palmetto Bluff: The River House Lounge offers handcrafted cocktails, wine and suds while soaking in gorgeous views of the May River, while the newer Octagon Bar features the resort’s signature barrel-aged Artillery Punch.

Bluffton: Saigon Cafe: The Lowcountry’s taste of the East, serving up delicious Vietnamese fare.



Hilton Head: Jazz Corner: The food and drink would cement Jazz Corner’s legacy alone, but factor in live music from worldclass talents and you have a nationally recognized hot spot. Bluffton: Corks Bluffton: One of the most happening spots on the Promenade after hours.


Hilton Head: Hickory Tavern: With TVs everywhere you look and a list of ice-cold beers as long as your arm, Hickory Tavern is the clear winner for watching your team score. Bluffton: R Bar: A great place to catch the big game, grab a drink, and wolf down some great grub like their signature “Beef on ‘weck,” just like they serve it in Buffalo.


Hilton Head: Michael Huffstetler, Jazz Corner: The island’s coolest bar demands an equally cool bartender, and the staff at Jazz Corner is always there with a refreshing drink and a smile. Bluffton: Hodge, Southern Barrel Brewing Co.: From slingin’ drinks to hosting trivia, Hodge is a staple at this popular Bluffton brewpub.


Hilton Head: World of Beer: When your name is World of Beer, you’d better come strapped with an array of taps. World of Beer does not disappoint, with an array of craft and imports that will leave you thirsty for more. Bluffton: Southern Barrel Brewing Co.: A wide array of award-winning beers, including popular seasonal brews, created right here in Bluffton.

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Hilton Head: SERG Catering: The folks behind your favorite restaurants are bringing the party to you. Don’t entertain without it. Bluffton: Chef Lynn Michelle: “The East Coast Chef” puts her formal culinary training to good use as one of the area’s most sought-after personal chefs.


BREWERY Hilton Head: Hilton Head Brewery: Between the expanded beer garden and the endless rotation of inspired brews flowing from the taps, HHBC is the hophead’s go-to. Bluffton: Salt Marsh Brewery: Brewed above Fat Patties in Old Town, these local brews put a Lowcountry twist on craft beer.




Hilton Head: Palmetto Bay Sunrise Café: No surprises here. Palmetto Bay Sunrise Café is the island’s breakfast nook, with a loyal following among locals and visitors alike.

Hilton Head: Michael Cirafesi, Ombra: On an island crowded with masterful chefs, this award means a little more than most, and no one deserves it more than Cirafesi.

Bluffton: First Watch: Fresh and delicious, with plenty of healthy options, this is the perfect place to give your stomach a positive start to the day.

Bluffton: Brandon Carter, FARM Bluffton: Carter and his staff take what the Lowcountry bounty brings them and creates one of the most unique and creative culinary experiences the area has to offer.


Hilton Head: Watusi: With a huge variety of coffee offerings and a menu packed with responsibly sourced favorites, this southend hot spot is a clear choice for brunch.

Hilton Head: Poseidon: Hilton Head Island’s party headquarters is the clear choice for favorite nightlife, with its menu of tasty cocktails and rotating live entertainment.

Bluffton: Calhoun Street Tavern: A mouth-watering menu of Southern favorites with a gourmet twist and a full list of inventive cocktails make for a Sunday Funday on the Promenade.

Bluffton: Calhoun Street Tavern: When the live music is coming from their inviting outdoor courtyard, it’s hard to pass up stopping by for some tunes and a nightcap.



Hilton Head: Carolina Coffee & Crumbs: Coligny Plaza’s newest hotspot is the perfect place to sip a smooth cup of joe and indulge in ocean breezes. Bluffton: Corner Perk: At Bluffton’s most hopping corner, this friendly neighborhood coffee shop in every sense of the word is a favorite hangout spot for rich, flavorful coffee and conversation.

COUNTER SERVICE Hilton Head: Healthy Habit: Maybe it’s the smiling faces that greet you, maybe it’s the fresh ingredients growing right where you can see them, but the experience here is second to none. Bluffton: The Juice Hive: The cold-pressed juices, smoothies and vegan-friendly items make this lunch and breakfast spot a healthy favorite.

DELI Hilton Head: Gruby's New York Deli: There’s real Big Apple authenticity in every bite at Gruby’s, and the Bronx Bomber will change your life. Bluffton: Downtown Deli: A Bluffton classic somehow keeps getting better with age, where they’ve expanded the menu and added grab-n-go options.


DESSERT MENU Hilton Head: Sea Grass Grille: From the bananas foster torte to the chocolate pate, this dessert menu is head and shoulders above the rest. Bluffton: The Cottage: From pies and tarts to cheesecake, cookies, and bread pudding, if you can’t find something to satisfy your sweet tooth here, we can’t help you.

EUROPEAN (NON-ITALIAN) Hilton Head: Charlie's L'Etoile Verte: The Green Star continues to shine with an ever-changing menu that gleefully dances around the continent. Bluffton: Bluffton Brauhaus: The self-proclaimed “meeting place” offers standard German fair like bratwurst, schnitzel and sauerbraten. Oh, and lots of bier.


Hilton Head: Michael Anthony's: A perennial favorite for truly authentic Italian, Michael Anthony’s is the choice for a sophisticated night out. Bluffton: May River Grill: Unassuming from the outside, a longtime Bluffton favorite serves up mouth-watering fresh seafood, including their signature Daufuskie Island-style crab cakes.

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Hilton Head: Papa Wheelie's Smoked Meats and Eats: The island’s hottest new food truck serves up delectable barbecue with a side of rad two-wheeled acrobatics.

Hilton Head: Main Street Café: Islanders hold happy hour sacred, making this win a huge (and well-deserved) feather in Main Street Café’s cap.

Bluffton: Murican Border: A fun twist on the traditional taco truck with menu items like the “Funk Seoul Brother” (spicy Korean tacos) and “Spartaco” (Greek tacos), as well as more standard tortilla-wrapped fare.

Bluffton: Calhoun Street Tavern: Great spot to start your evening with $2 off house liquors, cocktails, wine, and bottle and draft beers — as well as their delicious appetizers — from 4-6 p.m. every weekday.


Hilton Head: Ombra: The home of this year’s award winner for favorite chef delights with old world favorites. Bluffton: Nonna Lucia: Authentic Italian cuisine served in an elegant setting coupled with an extensive wine list make this a reader favorite for a date night or a family dinner.



Hilton Head: Salty Dog: Encounters with exotic birds, photo ops with Jake the Salty Dog… what kid wouldn’t love it? The child in all of us will have a blast, too. Bluffton: Fat Patties: Let the kids play on the giant soccer ball pool table while you enjoy a burger and a delicious craft beer or three.

LUNCH Hilton Head: Healthy Habit: The latest project for restaurateur wunderkind Nick Bergelt racks up yet another award for its healthy and delicious offerings. Bluffton: The Cottage: Settle in for a relaxing lunch on the porch with some of the Lowcountry’s finest shrimp and grits, a decadent Monte Cristo sandwich, or the delicious grilled bread salad with crab cakes. Yum!

MEXICAN/SOUTHWESTERN Hilton Head: Santa Fe: The rare perennial favorite that never stops innovating, Santa Fe Café has earned its reputation for authentic and delicious southwestern cuisine. Bluffton: Mi Tierra: Locals know where to send you for the best Mexican food this side of the border. Just look for the wooden cowboy out front, then follow your nose to some of the most mouth-watering fajitas, burritos and Mexican favorites known to man.

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NEW CHEF Hilton Head: Nunzio Patruno: He may be new to us, but Nunzio has built his reputation for decades as a brilliant culinarian. Bluffton: Julio Licona, Nonna Lucia: New chef, same great Italian favorites at this popular spot.

NEW RESTAURANT Hilton Head: Nunzio Restaurant & Bar: The epicurean acumen of owner/chef Nunzio Patruno has found its perfect home amid this sprawling New Orleans Road wonder. Bluffton: Bricco: Classic Italian favorites and modern creations based in the Old World have made this the new hotspot for gourmet pizza and pasta.



Hilton Head: Hudson's Seafood House on the Docks: There’s dock to table, and then there’s table on dock. Pull up a chair amid their relaxed dockside dining and bask in sparkling Lowcountry waters.

PET FRIENDLY Hilton Head: Dockside: Wide open spaces mean there’s plenty of room for Rover to roam while you relax and enjoy waterside cocktails. Bluffton: Old Town Dispensary: The tail-wagging on display at the OTD’s ample outdoor dining area proves canines love Bluffton’s favorite outdoor hot spot just as much as their humans.

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Hilton Head: Sage Room: A chic atmosphere and a menu filled with culinary genius make for a natural aphrodisiac. Some of the island’s great love stories have started here for a reason. Bluffton: Truffles: A charming atmosphere and expansive menu make this Belfair Towne Village eatery a favorite for fostering romance.

SEAFOOD Hilton Head: Sea Grass Grille: The bounty of the Lowcountry’s waters is just the beginning. It’s the expertly crafted preparation techniques that make Sea Grass Grille a favorite. Bluffton: Bluffton Family Seafood: Straight from the May River to your plate, courtesy of the Toomer family.




Hilton Head: Nick's Steak and Seafood: The loyal following that make this place a local legend can always rely on a friendly face when they arrive.

Hilton Head: Lowcountry Backyard: Dave Peck and company have created a home-away-from-home for Lowcountry foodies looking for Southern grub better than mama used to make.

Bluffton: Chow Daddy’s: Come for the delicious food, stay for the outstanding staff. They’re friendly, fun, and committed to making your dining experience a pleasure.

Bluffton: FARM Bluffton: Farmto-table in the truest sense, the menu is “seasonally inspired” and built around the best ingredients the Lowcountry bounty has to offer.


Hilton Head: Delisheeyo: A whole garden of culinary delights find beautiful expression on the menu at Delisheeyo. Bluffton: Avocado Bleu: Their tagline is “Good. Clean. Food.” Whether you’re eating in or snagging a grab-n-go item for later, nobody does healthy and light better.

WATER VIEWS Hilton Head: Old Fort Pub: With all due respect to the magic being made in the kitchen, it’s the views at Old Fort Pub that have us drooling.

WINE SELECTION Hilton Head: Red Fish: With nearly every wall packing a huge variety of vintages, it’s hard not to find that rare glass of red or white you’ve been hunting for. Bluffton: The Bluffton Room: The wine list at this upscale restaurant on the Promenade is ever-changing, but they always keep a broad range of reds and whites at varying price points.

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Hilton Head: A Floral Affair: From special events to “just because,” A Floral Affair has a reputation that has only grown over the years. Bluffton: Gardenia’s: If you need custom floral arrangements for any occasion, Angela and her team provide the best the Lowcountry has to offer.




Hilton Head: Island Child: Generations of parents have relied on this island standby for unforgettable gifts and stylish clothes for their young ones.

Hilton Head: Chella D: Unleash your inner diva at this fashionforward consignment shop, and find out how they earned this win.

Hilton Head: Gifted Hilton Head: A carefully curated selection with everything from jewelry to apparel and kitchenware, Gifted Hilton Head has the item you’ve been searching for, no matter what it is.

Bluffton: Moonlit Lullaby: The perfect spot to outfit your young ones or pick up the ideal gift for baby showers or birthdays.

Bluffton: Vintage Market: Skip the chain furniture stores and check out this local favorite to find unique treasures that will give your home personality.

Bluffton: Markel’s Card & Gift Shop: When you need an extraspecial gift for an extra-special someone, this is your one-stop shop.



Hilton Head: Publix: The southeast’s resident grocery giant has built its reputation on friendly service, huge selection and fair pricing. Bluffton: Publix: Friendly service, huge selection and a bakery that’s approaching legendary status. Their slogan says shopping there is a pleasure, and the Lowcountry agrees.

JEWELRY STORE Hilton Head: Forsythe Jewelers: In business since 1927, it’s safe to say these folks know the finest jewelry and where to find it. Bluffton: Golis Family Jewelers: This family-owned jewelry store sells fine jewelry with gemstones, gold pieces, silver pieces, diamonds and more.


Hilton Head: Grayco Hardware & Home: Skip the big box stores and discover a local favorite whose following stems from its friendly service and expertise.

Hilton Head: Coastal Bliss: The well-dressed man knows that the refined Lowcountry look lives at Coastal Bliss. Bluffton: Off 5th: This store at Tanger Outlets is a full of discounted designer clothing for men who know where to find great deals on quality apparel.

Bluffton: Heuser Ace Hardware: Small store packed with every product under the sun and a helpful, friendly staff that lives up to the Ace name.

HEALTH FOOD/ VITAMIN STORE Hilton Head: The Herb Room: Built around family, The Herb Room creates a healthier you through a whole world of healing herbs and ointments. Bluffton: Back To Nature: This locally-owned shop on May River Road has provided a full range of products and services that promote wellness since 1986.

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FAVORITE RETAILERS OUTDOORS APPAREL Hilton Head: Outside Hilton Head: The company that practically invented Hilton Head’s outdoor pursuits is the natural choice for heading out in style. Bluffton: Southern Drawl Outfitters: If you need some new gear for your next hunting or fishing excursion, go see the folks at Southern Drawl and get outfitted.

SHOPPING CENTER Hilton Head: Village at Wexford: With a little bit of everything, this mid-island icon is the prime destination for whatever you need. Bluffton: Tanger Outlets: With nearly 100 name-brand outlets at two spots within a mile of each other, there’s no better place to find great deals.


SPORTING GOODS STORE Hilton Head: Player's World of Sports: From golf gear to soccer cleats, these guys are the first stop for islanders looking to break a sweat. Bluffton: Old South Golf Links Pro Shop: The pro shop at one of the area’s favorite public courses will get you all set up for your next round.



Hilton Head: Pretty Papers: Was there ever any doubt? Pretty Papers has been the first name in eye-catching stationery for years.

Hilton Head: Optical Solutions: Get your vision sharp and your look even sharper at Hilton Head’s favored spot for stylish eyewear.

Bluffton: Lettrs Gifts: Stock up on stationery and snag the perfect personalized gift for that special someone at their Hilton Head or Bluffton location.

Bluffton: Optical Solutions: Dr. Michael Campbell and his staff are the area’s eyewear experts with three convenient locations in Bluffton and Hilton Head.

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THRIFT SHOP Hilton Head: St. Francis Thrift: Celebrating 20 years, St. Francis Thrift has been a long-time destination for bargain hunters. Bluffton: Off Island Thrift: Sift through their huge selection of gently-used items, antiques and clothing and feel good knowing the profits help provide relief to cancer patients.

TIRE STORE Hilton Head: H&H Auto: Perennial favorites throughout Readers’ Choice Awards history, H&H is miles ahead of the competition. Bluffton: NTB Tire & Service Center: Three locations in Beaufort County offering a wide selection of tires and a full range of auto service.

TOY STORE Hilton Head: Hilton Head Toys at Coligny: You don’t have to be a kid to enjoy the enchanting collection of toys, games, novelties and more at this beachside purveyor of fun. Bluffton: Moonlit Lullaby: This popular children’s boutique is thriving with a new owner and a new location in Old Town.


WINE & SPIRITS STORE Hilton Head: Rollers Wine & Spirits: Raise your glass to the spot where every great party in Hilton Head Island history was launched. Bluffton: Bill’s Liquor Store: The undisputed choice of locals looking for the best prices and selection of beer, wine, and spirits.

WOMEN’S CLOTHING (CASUAL) Hilton Head: Coastal Bliss: From the beach to the boardroom, the island’s best dressed women find their favorite look at Coastal Bliss. Bluffton: Cocoon: Stylish looks and top brands right on the Promenade in Bluffton.


Hilton Head: Aiden Lane: When the big day needs to look nextlevel fabulous, Aiden Lane has you covered. Bluffton: Blush Bridal & Formal Wear: The only one-stop bridal shop in Bluffton offers a curated collection of sophisticated wedding attire.

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AUTO DETAILING Hilton Head: Auto Spa: Buying your dream car is just the beginning. Keeping it looking fresh requires care and expertise, and you’ll find both at Auto Spa. Bluffton: Island Car Wash: The area’s favorite full-service car wash now has a convenient location in Okatie to help you keep your wheels looking fresh.


AUTO REPAIR Hilton Head: H&H Auto: H&H Auto has owned this category for as long as it’s been a category. With its trademark expertise and care, we don’t see that changing anytime soon. Bluffton: Morris Garage and Towing: A trusted mechanic is worth his weight in gold, and Jeffrey and his team won’t let you down.



Hilton Head: Willie J. Rice Photography: From headshots to group shots, Willie Jo Rice makes sure everyone looks their best.

H i lto n Head: HighTide Restoration & Cleaning: Whether recovering from disaster or just keeping their floors looking snazzy, homeowners have turned to HighTide for years.

Bluffton: Carrie Friesen: Selfmade photographer specializing in family and newborn sessions and weddings.

Bluffton: Stanley Steamer: You know the jingle. They get carpets cleaner. Bluffton confirms.

HOME CLEANING Hilton Head: HH Cleaning Services: There’s clean, and then there’s the white-glove spotlessness that has been HH Cleaning Services’ calling card for years. Bluffton: Merry Maids: Offering a full range of services to let you focus on something else and know the house will be sparkling when you get home.


Hilton Head: Meeting Dynamics: Bill Winans and his team don’t just set a mood or create a theme – they develop a wholly immersive experience, with your special event right in the middle. Bluffton: Meeting Dynamics: From conventions and conferences to stage sets and specialty events like casino nights, you name it, they’ll make it special.

TECH SUPPORT COMPANY Hilton Head: SNS Technologies: With branches on both sides of the Broad River, SNS Technologies stands at the vanguard of digital security throughout Beaufort County. Bluffton : KM L Computer Services: When it comes to keeping your business’s data assets secure, Bluffton trusts KML Computer Services.

VIDEOGRAPHER Hilton Head: Aerial Lifestyle: Look! Up in the sky! It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s a company that has changed how local Realtors market and how weddings are remembered! Bluffton: Jeff Mayoh: An expert in storytelling through video and has years of experience in visual communications, media and technology.

FAMILY PHOTOGRAPHER Hilton Head: Kellie McCann Photography: This sharp shooter has been making family memories for years, racking up awards along the way. Bluffton: Lloyd Wainscott: A seasoned shooter with an eye for details, Lloyd gives every client his full attention and a customized experience.

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COVER BAND Hilton Head: White Liquor: It’s not a party unless the guys from White Liquor show up, bringing with them decades of Rolling Stones hits. Jagger wishes he had moves like these. Bluffton: Deas Guyz: You name it, Deas Guyz will play the heck out of it, from Bruno Mars to Jimmy Buffett, plus all the Motown, R&B and jazz standards.

JAZZ BAND Hilton Head: Levon & Louise: These standbys at Ruby Lee’s South bring the good times with a set-list that dances between Broadway and the blues, hitting every stop in between. Bluffton: Deas Guyz: If you dig jazz, you have to catch Deas Guyz at The Jazz Corner on Sunday nights.


ORIGINAL BAND Hilton Head: Pretty Darn: Kyle Wareham and Nick Poulin have earned every encore as they’ve blazed a trail to musical glory. Bluffton: Cranford Hollow: Hilton Head Island’s own Southern rockers are still a hot ticket when they’re not out touring.

PARTY BAND Hilton Head: Groove Town Assault: Studies confirm that there is, in fact, no party like a Groove Town Assault party. You can’t argue with science. Bluffton: Lowcountry Boil: You know you’re in for a fun night when the area’s resident bluegrass band starts pickin’ and jamming.

PERFORMING ARTS VENUE Hilton Head: The Arts Center of Coastal Carolina: Nowhere else even comes close. The Arts Center has been the epicenter of the island’s performing arts community, with Broadwaycaliber shows and pure elegance. Bluffton: The Roasting Room: The intimate space above The Corner Perk on the Promenade is a delightful spot to catch upand-coming artists.

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BUSINESSES & PROFESSIONALS BANK Hilton Head: Coastal States Bank: Our hometown bank has been the bedrock upon which Hilton Head Island’s business community is built. Bluffton: Synovus: Formerly NBSC, this regional bank offers personal attention and unmatched customer service.

CAR DEALERSHIP Hilton Head: Low Country Motors: Like the ads say, everybody drives a used car. Around here, most of us drive a used car from Low Country Motors.



Hilton Head: Innova: On the island and in Bluffton, Innova small business consulting keeps your books balanced and your stash squared away.

Hilton Head: Art League of Hilton Head: Some of the most talented artists to call Hilton Head Island home have shown their works here. If these walls could talk.

Bluffton: Innova: An eye for the details and outstanding customer service helped Innova SBC retain the title for another year.

Bluffton: Society of Bluffton Artists: The SOBA gallery on Calhoun Street features a new exhibit every four weeks with a different featured artist or themed show, so you’ll want to visit again and again.


Bluffton: Low Country Motors: You can buy used with confidence knowing you’ll get a fair price and great service from Kyle, Mike, and Shane.


Hilton Head: John Jolley: Whether serving his clients locally or steering legal policy throughout the state, Jolley has proven to be one of the Palmetto State’s go-to experts in family law.



Hilton Head: Thomas Dowling, Aegis Capital Corp.: Maybe you’ve seen him on one of his Talk of the Town appearances or maybe he’s helped manage your wealth. Either way, you know the name and the expertise. Bluffton: Natasha Donaldson, Mass Mutual: With an MBA and eight years of experience in banking, Natasha has the expertise you need in a financial adviser.



Hilton Head: Hilton Head Plantation: Between the golf, tennis and outdoor recreation, Hilton Head Plantation has established itself as your favorite place to call home. Bluffton: Hampton Lake: With top-notch amenities centered around the water and wellness, residents of this Bluffton community are loving life at The Lake.


Hilton Head: Kinghorn Insurance: Our hometown insurance company gives you peace of mind for your home, business, car and family. Bluffton: Coastal Plains Insurance of the Lowcountry: This full-service independent insurance agency is locally owned and operated, and they’re always looking out for their customers.

LAWYER/ATTORNEY - GENERAL Hilton Head: Jim Berl: For 25 years, Berl has helped navigate his clients through the tangled web of the law, and has earned their trust. Bluffton: Ryan Mikkelson: The Mikkelson Law Firm specializes in services including commercial and residential real estate closings, family law and estate planning, but Mikkelson is active on a number of boards, including Family Promise of Beaufort County, the Boys & Girls Club of the Lowcountry, and Lowcountry Legal Volunteers.

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Hilton Head: 98.7 The River: You can’t read the words without hearing the jingle. When you need a station to turn on and leave on, The River keeps on running.

Hilton Head: Mortgage Network: Even if they didn’t bring their A game to our annual Readers’ Choice Awards Party every year, we’d still be rooting for them to win this one.

Bluffton: 104.9 The Surf: Classic hits and toe-tapping favorites. Turn that dial to The Surf and you’ll leave it there all day.

Bluffton: Mortgage Network: If you are looking to buy or refinance a home, or invest in a multifamily property or second home, this is the one-stop shop of the Lowcountry.


Hilton Head: Signature Real Estate Group: Signature agents have banded together to offer real estate expertise that’s making waves on the island. Bluffton: Joe’s Classic Cuts: The traditional barber shop is alive and well in Old Town thanks to master barber Joe Gancio and his team.

NONPROFIT GROUP Hilton Head: Volunteers in Medicine: Our very own homegrown miracle workers have spread their mission far and wide, making islanders proud and helping those in need. Bluffton: Bluffton Self Help: Bluffton’s favorite non-profit is always there to help those in need get back on their feet with food, clothing, educational and financial assistance, and more.

PERSONAL INJURY LAWYER Hilton Head: Clifford Bush III: One of our area’s most accomplished attorneys is your pick for favorite personal injury lawyer. Excellent judgment on your part. Bluffton: Mike Hostilo: With more than 25 years on the case, Mike Hostilo has earned the Lowcountry’s trust.


Hilton Head: Charter One Realty: The biggest is the best, with a welldeserved Readers’ Choice Award win for a powerhouse of Lowcountry real estate. Bluffton: Collins Group Realty: Chip Collins and his team of experienced real estate agents have been making homebuyers and sellers happy for nearly two decades.

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Hilton Head: Hale & Hale: Seasoned professionals with a long history on Hilton Head Island, the attorneys at Hale & Hale have seen it all when it comes to Lowcountry real estate. Bluffton: Bob Arundell: Longtime Lowcountry real estate attorney helps make closings a breeze.

REALTOR Hilton Head: Carmen Washington, Signature Real Estate Group: One of the group of experts who have made Signature Real Estate Group your favorite new business, Carmen Washington is already making a huge impact in real estate. Bluffton: Chip Collins: The owner and brokerin-charge for Collins Group Realty, Chip is one of the most trusted names in Lowcountry real estate.



Hilton Head: The Cypress of Hilton Head: Endless activities and beautiful surroundings make The Cypress a worthy choice for favorite retirement facility. Bluffton: Sun City: When it’s time to settle down, there’s no place better than Sun City, where there’s a club or activity for every interest.

WEDDING VENUE Hilton Head: The Westin Hilton Head Island Resort & Spa: Getting married right on the beach is a great way to say “I do,” and that’s why so many happily-ever-afters start here. Bluffton: Venue 1223: The Downtown Catering Company’s new event space is the perfect setting for any occasion.

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BLINDS/WINDOW COVERING COMPANY Hilton Head: Liberty Wallcoverings: Custom blinds, shades, shutters, draperies... Basically, if it makes your windows beautiful, you’ll find it here.

APPLIANCE STORE Hilton Head: Billy Wood: Stop by their Marshland Road showroom and prepare to be dazzled. Your dream kitchen is in here somewhere, and you’re going to have a blast finding it. Bluffton: Play and Gourmet: When you’re ready to build that custom media room or take your smart home game to the next level, call the experts in home technology.

ARCHITECT Hilton Head: Tom Parker: The head of Parker Design Group studied alongside the legendary figures who helped create the Hilton Head Island look. Now he’s taking that look into the future. Bluffton: Court Atkins Group: Specializing in architecture, planning, and interior design for residential and commercial projects.


Bluffton: Budget Blinds of the Lowcountry: Blinds? Shutters? Shades? Drapes? Rugs? They have thousands of looks in hundreds of colors.

BUILDER Hilton Head: Graves Construction: Celebrating its 60th year, Graves Construction is almost literally the company that built Hilton Head Island as we know it. Bluffton: Randy Jeffcoat Builders: Like his father before him, Randy Jeffcoat has been building dream homes since 1973.

ELECTRICIAN Hilton Head: Oceanside Electric: Our readers know shockingly good work when they see it. These folks are wired for service, and have the award to prove it.


Hilton Head: American Wood Reface: The look of a whole-kitchen upgrade at a fraction of the cost, using the highest quality materials? No wonder they’re winning awards. Bluffton: Palmetto Cabinet Studio: Ashley Avery and her team will work with you to design the perfect kitchen, bath, laundry room or den for your new construction or remodel.

CARPET/FLOORING COMPANY Hilton Head: KPM Flooring: From stone and tile to wood flooring and carpeting, these folks have been beautifying spaces across the Lowcountry for more than 18 years. Bluffton: Top Quality Flooring: From tile and carpet to beautiful hardwood floors, no job is too big or too small for this locally-owned company.

Bluffton: Randy May Electric: Randy May has served the Lowcountry’s electrical needs since 1982, and his team of experienced electricians provide affordable, high-quality service when you need it.

GRANITE/ STONE/ MARBLE COMPANY Hilton Head: Distinctive Granite & Marble: The Antunes family has been making kitchens and baths more beautiful through their hand-selected stone for decades, earning a slew of Readers’ Choice Awards along the way. Bluffton: Prestige Stone & Tile: Owned and operated by the Ragonesi family for more than 40 years, Prestige Stone & Tile will make sure your new or remodeled kitchen or bath is set to stun.

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HEATING AND AIR COMPANY Hilton Head: EAC: This year’s win makes it a four-peat for this locally owned and operated heating and air contractor, with five Readers’ Choice Award wins over the last six years. Maybe EAC should mean Earned Another Championship. Bluffton : Goch nauer Ai r Conditioning & Heating: Serving the Lowcountry’s HVAC needs since 1999, the Gochnauer family elected to stamp their name on the business as a reminder of their commitment to high quality at a fair price with a promise of honesty.


Hilton Head: Coastal Home: Indoors and outdoors, the casual coastal chic look that these home furnishings experts have curated has earned them Readers’ Choice Awards gold. Bluffton: Easy 2 Own Furnishings: Locally owned and operated store offers the best prices and payment options when it’s time to update your living room, dining room, bedroom, or appliances, and they always provide free delivery and setup.


Hilton Head: J. Banks Design Group: Constantly on the vanguard, the Lowcountry’s resident tastemakers continue to innovate and excite. Bluffton: Kelly Caron Designs: Bringing Southern soul to largescale and residential projects.

LANDSCAPING COMPANY Hilton Head: The Greenery: For as long as Hilton Head Island has been Hilton Head Island, the Greenery has been there to keep it looking beautiful. Bluffton: Bruno Landscape and Nursery: The Bruno family has been creating beautiful custom landscaping designs for residential and commercial clients since 1989.

MOVING COMPANY Hilton Head: Iannazzo Trucking: Truly, this is a moving win for the Hilton Head Island-based company. Bluffton: College H.U.N.K.S.: The “H.U.N.K.S.” in their name stands for “honest, uniformed, nice, knowledgeable, and service.” That’s what you’ll get from the local franchise owned and operated by retired U.S. Air Force veterans John and Saudah Brown.

Coastal Home

Thank you for your wonderful support this year. We look forward to serving you in the upcoming year.

From our Coastal Home family to yours... Have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! 1528 Fording Island Road

Hilton Head



NURSERY/GARDEN CENTER Hilton Head: The Green Thumb: With beautiful blooms and expert service, The Green Thumb is like an ultra-chic boutique for your yard. Bluffton: Taylor’s Quality Landscape Supply and Nursery: With locations throughout the area, Taylor’s is the first name in Lowcountry landscaping projects large and small.


Hilton Head: Hilton Head Exterminators: They’ve been putting the Lowcountry’s bugs, critters and creepy crawlies on notice for decades, earning loyalty, trust and Readers’ Choice Awards along the way. Bluffton: Old South Exterminators: From humble beginnings in Ridgeland, this family owned and operated company has served the community since 1968 and keeps thousands of homes and businesses in the Lowcountry free of pests.

PLUMBER Hilton Head: Butler's Plumbing: They’ve been going with the flow since 1981, and along the way Butler Plumbing has filled the trophy case with awards as your favorite. Bluffton: Butler’s Plumbing: Needing a plumber is never fun. Knowing one you can trust is crucial. And Bluffton trusts Butler’s Plumbing.



Hilton Head: Year Round Pool: For top-quality maintenance, repair or new construction, Year Round Pool has been swimming in awards since 1981. Bluffton: Diamond Pools & Spas: The Andersen family has built the Lowcountry’s most stunning swimming pools for three generations, including nearly a decade under the Diamond Pools & Spas name.

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Hilton Head: Roberts Construction: Frank Roberts has personally overseen every project undertaken by his company since 1987, lending each one his award-winning expertise and craftsmanship. Bluffton: Roberts Construction: When you choose Frank Roberts and his team for your renovation, you know you’re getting the attention to detail and high-quality workmanship that has made them a trusted choice since 1987.



Hilton Head: Alliance Roofing: When you’ve won Angie’s List Super Service Award three years in a row, a Readers’ Choice Award win is a natural next step. Bluffton: Alpha Omega: One of the most trusted names in the roofing industry in the Southeast for 27 years.

SECURITY SYSTEM Hilton Head: Hilton Head Security: With Hilton Head Security taking home the win, it’s a clear sign we didn’t have many burglars voting this year. Bluffton: Palmetto Security Systems: Locally-owned and operated, this company brings outstanding customer service along with state-of-the-art security systems that are affordable and easy to use.

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Hilton Head: Dr. Thomas Beller: Remember this name when pollen season comes. Just kidding, this is Hilton Head and it’s always pollen season.



ACUPUNCTURE Hilton Head: Beth Schoon: Our readers have given a well-deserved tip of the pin to Beth Schoon for her mastery of acupuncture. Bluffton: Ageless Acupuncture, Dr Cheryl McCarthy: “The gentle acupuncurist,” McCarthy specializes in treating pain, digestive problems, and women’s health issues with this ancient form of Oriental medicine.


Bluffton: Dr. Thomas Beller: If seasonal sniffles are getting to you, Dr. Beller will find the cause and help you toss the tissues.


Hilton Head: Dr. Brad Fraum, Fraum Center for Restorative Health: A legion of welladjusted fans have made their voices heard. When it comes to alignment, Dr. Fraum has your back. Bluffton: Dr. Dean Klingenberg, Coastline Chiropractic and Rehabilitation Center: A knowledgeable and experienced chiropractor, Dr. Dean specializes in keeping golfers of all ages and skill levels in top condition to play their best.

FAVORITE MEDICAL DENTIST (COSMETIC) Hilton Head: Dr. Kenneth Kowalyk: Dr. Kowalyk’s loyal fans will be easy to spot – they’ll be the ones flashing beautiful smiles for the cameras at the Readers’ Choice Awards party. Bluffton: Dr. Richard Porcelli, Bluffton Center for Dentistry: This winner since 2013 is committed to helping people get the smile they want.

DENTIST (FAMILY) Hilton Head: Dr. Kevin Fader: A bit of a scientist, a bit of an artist, Dr. Fader has been a long-time favorite among Readers’ Choice Awards voters. Bluffton: Dr. Jessica Gower, Palmetto Dental Arts: You don’t have to dread going to the dentist with Dr. Gower, who uses her multi-faceted experience and expertise to give her patients beautiful, strong, and healthy smiles.


DERMATOLOGIST Hilton Head: Dr. A. Thomas Bundy, Hilton Head Dermatology: Our local dermatologist is a towering figure in his field, offering revolutionary treatments that have garnered national attention. Bluffton: Dr. Carmen Traywick, May River Dermatology: A graduate of Emory Medical School, she opened May River Dermatology in 2009.

ENT DOCTOR (EAR,NOSE,THROAT) Hilton Head: Dr. David Maurer, Charleston ENT & Allergy-Hilton Head: After a quartercentury in his field, Dr. Maurer is head and shoulders above the rest. Bluffton: Dr. David Maurer, Charleston ENT & Allergy-Hilton Head:: From tubes to hearing aids, allergies and sinus issues, Dr. Mauer has been a longtime favorite.

Bluffton’s Favorite Doctor’s Office We are committed to working with our patient to establish a plan to keep you active and healthy. For those times when healthcare issues arise, we will work with you to develop the best plan of care possible.

Palmetto Medical Group 11 years of service 2008-2019 None of this would have been possible, if it wasn’t for your continual support. Thank You!! 4818 Bluffton Parkway • Bluffton, SC

Jennifer H. Stokes, FNP-C

Mon-Fri • 7am-5:30pm

843.706.0600 • Like us on Facebook! December 2019 115


FAMILY DOCTOR Hilton Head: Dr. Joel Johnson, Main Street Medical: When it comes to a huge Readers’ Choice Awards win, the doctor is in. Bluffton: Palmetto Medical Group: With a team of three doctors and two certified physician’s assistants, this family practice features a pleasant waiting room and an on-site lab for your convenience.

IN-HOME CARE Hilton Head: Hospice Care of the Lowcountry: Professional and caring to the last, Hospice Care of the Lowcountry is rightfully beloved on Hilton Head Island. Bluffton: BrightStar Care: Caring for a family member can be challenging, but the caring and experienced team at BrightStar strives to be a partner you can turn to for help keeping your loved one safe and healthy.



Hilton Head: Dr. Luke Wendt - Hilton Head OB/ GYN: Women of all ages have turned to Dr. Luke Wendt for his practiced expertise and skill. Bluffton: Dr. Erica Downey, Riverside Women’s Care: Relative newcomer to the area has quickly become a local favorite with her holistic viewpoint and belief in treating the "whole person."

OPTOMETRIST (VISION CARE) Hilton Head: Dr. Michael A. Campbell, Optical Solutions: Dr. Campbell has won the Readers’ Choice Award. If you didn’t see this one coming, it’s probably because you’re not one of his patients. Bluffton: Dr. Catherine Darling: Since founding Darling Eye Center in 2000, Dr. Darling has been keeping Bluffton residents seeing 20/20.

OPHTHALMOLOGIST (EYE DOCTOR) Hilton Head: Dr. Trey Bishop, Bishop Eye Center: Too bad we already used the “didn’t see that coming” joke. It was pretty shortsighted of us. Bluffton: Dr. Mark Goulas: An expert in his field, Dr. Goulas has been caring for Blufftonians’ vision since 2005, first as founder of Lowcountry Eye Associates, and with Goulas Eye since 2013.

ORTHODONTIST Hilton Head: Maginnis Orthodontics: From 3M Clarity Brackets to Invisalign, the team at Maginnis has been cranking out extraordinary smiles using the latest high-tech options. Bluffton: Dr. Travis Fiegle, Winning Orthodontic Smiles: The only American Board of Orthodontics-certified orthodontist that practices and resides in Beaufort County, Dr. Fiegle’s approach to patient care is simple: He treats every patient as if they were his own family.

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ORTHOPEDIC Hilton Head: Dr. Joseph Tobin, Tobin Bone & Joint: No bones about it, Dr. Tobin has earned this Readers’ Choice Award. Bluffton: Dr. Joseph Tobin, Tobin Bone & Joint: Dr. Tobin has been keeping Lowcountry residents feeling tip-top since moving his practice to Hilton Head Island in 1997.


Hilton Head: Dr. Thomas Morse, Kidz Planet Pediatric Dentistry: Young smiles need a little extra attention, and Dr. Morse’s skill with kids makes every visit enjoyable. Bluffton: Sea Smiles: One trip to see Dr. Shane and your kids will be excited to go to the dentist. No, really.


Hilton Head: Palmetto Pediatrics: Young patients and their parents will tell you that this was a great choice for this year’s Readers’ Choice Awards. Bluffton: Dr. Eric Peltz, Palmetto Pediatrics: With over 15 years of experience and a great bedside manner, Dr. Peltz is a popular choice to care for your kiddos.

PHARMACY Hilton Head: Burke's Pharmacy: From medical equipment to quality medications, islanders have been coming to Burke’s for health and wellness needs for decades. Bluffton: Bluffton Pharmacy: Go talk to Jim Sauter, whose family has been keeping folks healthy since 1903, and remember what it’s like to have a neighborhood drug store where the pharmacist knows your name.

PHYSICAL THERAPIST Hilton Head: Drayer Physical Therapy Institute: The road to recovery for countless locals has started here, earning them this year’s Readers’ Choice Award. Bluffton: Andrew Heffern, Cornerstone Physical Therapy: Providing a unique physical rehabilitation experience built on individualized care.

PLASTIC SURGEON Hilton Head: Dr. Frederick Weniger, Weniger Plastic Surgery: When it comes to facial rejuvenation, Dr. Weniger wrote the book. Literally, he penned a book on the subject based on his years of experience. Bluffton: Dr. Audrey Klenke, Pinnacle Plastic Surgery: Dr. Klenke walks clients through every step of the process, earning rave reviews for her skill and customer service.

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BARBER SHOP Hilton Head: Joe's Barber Shop: Joe bills himself as a “Jedi Master Barber.” As Yoda would say, “Look stylish, you will.” Bluffton: Barbers of the Lowcountry: Since 1997, Brent and Lou have specialized in hair care, razor shaves, and the finest grooming products.


FITNESS CENTER Hilton Head: Beach City Fitness: Get started on next summer’s beach body with their huge selection of equipment, personal training and group exercise classes. Bluffton: Cynergy Fitness: The gym for every lifestyle, Cynergy Fitness is open 24 hours, and fitness classes and child care are included in every membership. With over 16,000 square feet, men’s and women’s saunas, and a smoothie bar, you might never want to leave.

FAVORITE HEALTH & BEAUTY HAIR SALON Hilton Head: Enliten Salon: Sure, they leave clients looking and feeling amazing, but what sets Enliten apart is their commitment to clean, environmentally friendly products. That said, their clients really do look and feel wonderful. Bluffton: Salon Karma: Offering the latest techniques in hair cutting, hair coloring and nail care.

NAIL SALON Hilton Head: Nail Talk: Seasoned professionals and all the colors of the rainbow are, quite literally, at your fingertips at Nail Talk. Bluffton: H’Allure Nails & Spa: Popular salon in Buckwalter Place will have your nails looking fab.



Hilton Head: The Art of Massage and Yoga Therapy: Get those muscles toned and sexy with some yoga, then relaxed and rejuvenated with some massage. It’s one-stop shopping. Bluffton: Daily Massage: Servicing the Lowcountry for five years with a full range of spa and massage treatments.

MEDICAL SPA Hilton Head: Serendipity: Backed by clinically sound science, the offerings at Serenity Medical Spa have made them a hit among the island’s most beautiful people at Readers’ Choice Awards time. Bluffton: Lux Medical Spa: The premier choice for medical aesthetics and skin enrichment services.

SPA Hilton Head: Faces: Faces Day Spa is Hilton Head Island’s perennial favorite when it comes to Readers’ Choice Awards. Or just in general, really. Bluffton: Lux Medical Spa: You’ll be fully refreshed after a visit to Bluffton’s premier medical spa.


Hilton Head: Jiva Yoga Center: Jean and Ken Rioux have kept islanders limbered up and healthy since 2001, and have been rewarded with Readers Choice Awards gold. Bluffton: Jiva Yoga Center: With classes seven days a week at two locations, not to mention private yoga sessions, yoga on the beach, and stand-up paddleboard yoga, the Jiva Yoga team will help you find your center.

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Hilton Head: The Children's Center: Since 1967, The Children’s Center has built the educational foundations for some of Hilton Head Island’s brightest young minds.

Hilton Head: St. Luke's Pre School: Based in faith and a curriculum that nurtures young minds, St. Luke’s prides itself on getting children ready for school and life.

Bluffton: Lowcountry Day School: Privately owned Christian and state-licensed preschool welcoming families, with a music and ballet studio on-site.

Bluffton: St. Gregory the Great: Catholic school offers early childhood education following the STREAM — science, technology, religion, engineering, arts, and math — curriculum.

SCHOOLS K-12 Hilton Head: Hilton Head Preparatory School: Graduates of this prestigious school have gone on to greatness all over the world and here on Hilton Head Island, fueled by an award-winning curriculum and culture. Bluffton: Cross Schools: Providing an independent school experience based around academic excellence, Christian values, and community service.

HIGHER EDUCATION Hilton Head: USCB: One of the pillars of our community, USCB’s programs have made Hilton Head a hospitality education hotspot and attracted many bright young minds. Bluffton: Technical College of the Lowcountry: TCL offers associate degrees and certificates in a wide range of programs, as well as continuing education.

KIDS ACTIVITIES/ CLASSES Hilton Head: Island Recreation Center: From indoor activities to organized sports, the wide variety of youth programs offered at Island Rec Center assures your kids will find something they love. Bluffton: Alliance Dance Academy: From tap and ballet to hip-hop and cheer, Rochelle Clarkson has a class for everyone, young and old.


DOULA/MIDWIFERY SERVICES Hilton Head: April Lewis, The Art of Massage:Moms-to-be need someone on their side they can trust throughout their pregnancy. And as this award shows, the island’s expectant have found one of the best in April Lewis. Bluffton: April Lewis, The Art of Massage: April brings a natural approach to life, teaching prenatal, “Mommy and Me” and children’s yoga classes, and is a DONA-certified birth doula, certified Hypnobabies doula, and placenta encapsulation specialist.

RAINY DAY PLACES Hilton Head: The Art Café: This is Hilton Head's premiere destination for family and friends to paint pottery. Artists of all ages can make treasured pieces to use and cherish. Bluffton: Station 300: Bowl a few games, check out the arcade, or do a little of both with a break for a treat from the snack bar in between.


Hilton Head: Heavenly Spa by The Westin: Pregnancy is a beautiful thing. But try telling that to your lower back. Relax in blissfully serene surroundings and remind yourself there are only a few weeks to go.

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PET BOARDING Hilton Head: Evergreen Pet Lodge: Five-star luxury for your furry friends has made Evergreen Pet Lodge the favorite year in and year out at Readers’ Choice Awards time. Bluffton: The Bark Shack: Whether you need a petsitter while you’re away, doggy daycare to occupy a precocious pup, or regular pet care, they’ve got your fur babies’ needs covered.

PET GROOMING Hilton Head: Groomingdales: The island’s most stylish pets know that Groomingdales always leaves them looking show-ready. Bluffton: Camp Green Dog: They offer a full complement of options in their full-service grooming salon, sure to keep your four-legged friends looking and feeling their best.


Hilton Head: Tail Wiggles: If it squeaks, you’ll find it here among an array of toys and accessories for dogs, cats and every pet in between. Bluffton: Camp Green Dog: When it's time to stock up on goodies and supplies for your pet, Camp Green Dog in Ridgeland is waiting for you with a variety of treats and toys.

VETERINARIAN Hilton Head: Dr. Curtis B. Hennessy, Plantation Animal Hospital: Hilton Head Island’s own Dr. Doolittle has been treating patients with love and expertise for more than 30 years. Bluffton: Bluffton Veterinary Hospital: With eight highly qualified doctors of veterinary medicine, each with differing areas of expertise, you can be sure your pets are getting the highest possible quality of care.

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BIKE STORE & RENTALS Hilton Head: Bike Doctor: Whether you’re a visitor looking to tour our bike friendly community or a local with a busted shifter, you know where to go. Bluffton: Old Town Bike Barn & Adventures: Whether you need to buy a bike, rent some wheels for the week, or fix up your old ride, they’ll take care of it at the Bike Barn.

HOTEL/RESORT Hilton Head: Sonesta Resort Hilton Head Island: Locals looking for a staycation look to Sonesta to put them in that blissfully relaxed “tourist for a day” mindset. Bluffton: Old Town Bluffton Inn: With this luxurious and charming inn opening early this year, visitors finally have a place to stay in the heart of Bluffton.


Hilton Head: Outside Hilton Head: The originators of the island’s outdoor lifestyle are still the innovators, with tours and excursions that play out like interactive love letters to our Lowcountry environment. Bluffton: May River Excursions: Operating not much more than a stone’s throw from the May River on Calhoun Street, this group offers a wide range of tours to explore the Lowcountry’s natural habitat.


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Hilton Head: Long Cove Club: Golfweek and Golf Digest know it, and you know it, too. The 7,000 acres of Pete Dye brilliance at Long Cove Club is the island’s best. Bluffton: Colleton River Club: Two of the finest courses you’ll ever play in one place. Pete Dye’s linksy layout is stunning and challenging, while Jack Nicklaus’ design is inventive and features one of the prettiest closing stretches in the Lowcountry.

PUBLIC GOLF CLUB Hilton Head: Harbour Town Golf Links: When PGA TOUR players, as in people who golf for a living, list a golf course as one of their favorites, you’d better believe they’re right. Bluffton: Old South Golf Links: A favorite of residents and visitors alike, wildlife abounds on this naturally beautiful course.


TENNIS CENTER Hilton Head: Smith Stearns Tennis Academy: Built by tennis royalty, Smith Stearns has instructed the next generation of the game’s greats for 17 years. Bluffton: Tennisclub of the Lowcountry at Rose Hill: With a robust roster of programs for juniors and adults, as well as a full social calendar, TLC Rose Hill is the hub for tennis in Bluffton.

TRAVEL AGENT/AGENCY Hilton Head: Valerie Wilson: This national powerhouse has found a receptive audience of travelers on Hilton Head Island, offering up itineraries for personal and business excursions. Bluffton: Julie Hoyt/AAA Vacations: It’s not really a vacation if you have to do all the planning. Let these award-winning travel agents handle the details.

WATERSPORT RENTAL COMPANY Hilton Head: Outside Hilton Head: What more can be said about Outside Hilton Head’s massive impact on outdoor recreation here? If it floats, you’ll find it here.

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Decorating Naturally



ith its year-round natural beauty, the Lowcountry offers abundant choices for holiday decorating — endless colors, fragrances, textures and other elements that can be used to welcome the season. Inspiration for making and decorating garlands, wreaths, Christmas trees, planters, mailboxes, mantels and front doors is everywhere — in your yard and the nearby woods as well as at local nurseries. One local nursery manager suggested that the first step in holiday decorating might be getting a Fraser fir. “Nothing is better than a fresh cut Fraser fir tree,” said Jordan Bruno, nursery manager at Bruno Landscape & Nursery on Hilton Head Island. “That’s your starting point.” The family-owned nursery brings three truckloads of Fraser firs from North Carolina every holiday season and puts them in containers holding water once they arrive. Bruno’s most popular Fraser firs are big ones — standing 6 to 8 feet high. “It’s a very fragrant and sturdy tree,” said The Greenery’s Lisa Kiggans, also on the island. Other kinds of trees have become holiday traditions for many families, too, including those that are still in the ground at tree farms. In Beaufort County, A & A Christmas Trees in Okatie and The Family Tree Christmas Tree Farm in Bluffton grow their own Leyland and Murray cypresses, which have soft needles and a subtle scent. The farms also grow white pines, which have long needles, sturdy branches and a soft pine scent, and red cedars, known for their prickly needles and more distinctive scent.

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If you’re looking for a sign, clearly this is it.

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843.715.1425 134

At the tree farms, customers choose their favorite tree and saw it down themselves or have a worker at the farm do it for them. Real trees — either purchased from retail outlets or cut down at tree farms — make attractive and fragrant backdrops, especially after they’ve been decorated, said Janet Fanning, manager of The Greenery’s garden center and nursery. “You start with a base and add to it,” Fanning said, adding that the options for add-ons are limitless. She suggested driftwood, white pine pine cones, starfish, oyster shells, red berries, sprigs, wood picks, Christmas cactus, and cyclamen and croton plants. Her list of favorites also includes magnolia leaves, bent heads of agapanthus plants, grasses, crepe myrtles, bay leaves, plus rosemary and thyme for fragrance. Fresh garlands made of white pine intertwined with magnolia leaves make a striking decorative

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statement. Birch bark on a bed of evergreen spread across the fireplace mantel also attracts attention. “The great thing about the Lowcountry is that there are natural items available to us outside our doors,” Kiggans said. “They can provide different textures, spray painted or not, inside or outside the home. “You can cut from the branches of all our trees; there are a multitude of pine cones that you can bleach, which is a neat idea, instead of the natural brown color,” she added. To add a special feeling of the coast to your home, oyster shells can be attached to pine cones, she said. Turning an ordinary looking wreath into a much more distinctive one is easy, she said.


Just use florist wire to attach add-ons from the outdoors to the branches of the wreath. Colorful poinsettias always are a staple as a holiday adornment. They brighten the inside of any home or can be placed outside, where they’re unlikely to be damaged by the Lowcountry’s moderate climate. Poinsettias have an extra benefit, too: Instead of tossing them out when the holiday season ends because their leaves begin drooping, they can be potted or planted in the ground to await the arrival of next year’s holiday season. The photos in this section are courtesy of Montage Palmetto Bluff, where decorating with natural elements is an art. Explore the beautiful lights and decorations of the Inn and enjoy events including a boat parade and special holiday meals. For more information go to

Caring for a Fraser Fir Fraser firs are the most popular Christmas trees grown in North America. They have strong, dark green limbs, upwardly angled soft needles and a delightful scent. Fraser firs sold in the Lowcountry come from North Carolina. With fairly simple care, they’ll last about five weeks before drying out. Here are some care tips: • Cut off one-half inch from the bottom of the trunk to prevent dried sap from impeding the absorption of water into the tree. • If you’re not ready to put the tree in a stand, place it in a tub of water in a cool spot. • Try to avoid whittling down the tree’s trunk to fit your tree stand. • Fill the stand with one quart of water for every inch of the trunk’s diameter • Check the water level in the stand daily to make sure the tree stays hydrated.

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››Lighthouse Awards

Building the Lowcountry



he Lowcountry’s most talented builders and designers were recognized at the annual LightHouse Awards gala on Nov. 8 at the Sonesta Resort on Hilton Head Island. More than 300 area building professionals attended the ceremony, presented by the Hilton Head Area Home Builders Association and supported by title sponsor BB&T Home Mortgage. “The LightHouse Awards are truly like the Academy Awards for our local building industry,” said Dan Monroe, chairman of the LightHouse Awards program since its inception. “It gives builders and designers the opportunity to be recognized for the hard work, talent and vision.” The awards, which previously focused on residential construction, included light commercial projects this year. An award for excellence in community service also was new. The Joseph C. Harden Community Excellence Award went to Fraser Construction for its long-time commitment to serving the Lowcountry. Architects and interior designers also were recognized, as were sales and marketing professionals. The LightHouse Awards have been presented annually for the past 20 years


Led by Monroe, the 2019 LightHouse Awards Committee included Chris Cleland, Courtney Jansen, Deborah Karambelas, Bryan Mudrak, Carol Rodkin, Brian Edwards, Victoria Basirico, Lisa Henry, Michal Anderson, Caitlin Reardon; Katy Carbajal, Jay Fraser, Dan Mitchell, Rob Kaufman, Will McKown, Kevin Paige and Majka Mochnac. In addition to Title Sponsor BB&T Home Mortgage, other sponsors included Cleland Site Prep, Distinctive Granite and Marble, Ferguson Enterprises, More Space Place, Hilton Head Monthly, James Hardie Building Products, LowCountry Home Magazine, 2-10 Home Buyers Warranty, Kaufman Photography, Palmetto Electric Cooperative, Inc. and The Island Packet/Beaufort Gazette. to qualified members of the association for projects throughout the Lowcountry. This year's competition drew the most entries ever. Thirty-five companies— including remodelers, custom, and semi-custom builders— submitted 82 entries. In addition, eight firms submitted 28 interior and architectural design projects, for a total of 110

qualifying projects. Entries are categorized based on the project’s cost and square footage. The costs of this year’s remodeling projects and new construction ranged from $50,000 to more than $5 million. Twelve judges representing builders, remodelers, architects and other industry professionals came to the Lowcountry from Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Florida in mid-September to inspect each entry’s construction quality. The judges spent two and a half days visiting entries from Hilton Head Island to Fripp Island to Ridgeland. Additional judges — all construction or real estate sales and marketing professionals — were enlisted to rank sales and marketing entries. In many instances, the separation between runner-up and winner was a fraction of a point. Master of ceremonies Monty Jett announced the winners and presented the marble obelisk awards that resemble a lighthouse. “For many of these builders, after spending 12 to 15 months or longer working on a project, where even the smallest detail could impact the overall outcome, the LightHouse Awards symbolize one of the highest career honors,” Monroe said.

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››Lighthouse Awards

Congratulations to all of the night's winners


December 2019 145

››Real Estate News


Weichert Realtors Coastal Properties recently cut the ribbon to its new office in Old Town Bluffton, at 1250 May River Road. Hilton Head Island/ Bluffton Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Bill Miles, Bluffton Mayor Lisa Sulka, agents, clients and staff gathered to celebrate the grand opening. Weichert Realtors Coastal Properties also welcomes Kathryn Hickey, Darlene Johnson, Kim McElman and Evie Schoepf as real estate professionals. Johnson has more than 30 years of real estate experience with 20 years in the Hilton Head area. She has an extensive sales and marketing background and is joining her husband, Ollie, an agent at Weichert. A long-time visitor to the Lowcountry, McElman and her husband relocated to the area from Chicago. Hickey also vacationed in the Lowcountry for many years before moving to Bluffton from Long Island, NY. Schoepf’s prior experience includes home renovations, ownership and management of vacation rental properties, and involvement in new subdivisions and home building.


Kelley Finley has joined the Colleton River Club as the director of marketing and communications. She has over 20 years of strategic marketing and management experience. Finley previously worked for Taylor Morrison/AV Homes and Ashton Woods Homes. In another appointment, Eric Schultz became the club’s new director of golf operations. Schultz formerly worked at Philmont Country Club and White Manor Country Club in Pennsylvania. He is certified in golf operations through the PGA of America.


Kara Mehuron has joined the team at Cora Bett Thomas Realty as a sales associate. Previously, Mehuron worked as an educator in Texas in the gifted and talented curriculum. She is originally from North Carolina and has a bachelor’s degree in education from Stephen F. Austin State University.

Greta Lynne

Berwick Drews

Marlee Johnson

Allyson and Brian Etheridge


Allyson and Brian Etheridge have joined the team at Celia Dunn Sotheby’s International Realty as sales professionals. The Etheridge Group has been a top producing team over the past 15 years in Asheville, Hendersonville and Western North Carolina. The Etheridge Group specializes in all facets of real estate, from luxury resale properties to new developments and conversions.


Larry and Eva Bell have joined Century 21 Diamond Realty as The Bell Team. They have represented buyers and sellers in Hilton Head, Bluffton and the surrounding area for 16 years.


Lowcountry native Greta Lynne has joined Century 21 Diamond Realty as a real estate agent. For 22 years she has listed and sold properties throughout Beaufort and Jasper counties, including residential, land, farms, estates, investment, development and new construction. Also, Marlee Johnson of Century 21 Diamond Realty has earned the Seniors Real Estate Specialist designation from the National Association of Realtors after completing a course about the needs, considerations and goals of real estate buyers and sellers ages 55 and older.


Berwick Drews has joined the team at Berkeley Hall as the new CFO and controller. Drews has more than 30 years of experience in finance and operations with hotels, golf resorts, senior living and real estate. Previously, Drews served as the director of finance for Devonshire & Chatsworth at PGA National, a retirement community in Palm Beach Gardens, FL.

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Island Resident Since 1972 REALTOR of The Year 1996, 2004, 2015 •


Hilton Head

81 Main Street, Suite 202, Hilton Head Island, SC 29926 Realtor (843) 384-7300 or (800) 267-3285 ext. 4215

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays 29 OLD FORT DRIVE HILTON HEAD PLANTATION


PANORAMIC SKULL CREEK / INTRACOASTAL WATERWAY VIEW Majestic sunsets over the water and Pinkney Island. Enjoy the water view and wildlife activity from the expansive deck shaded by moss draped oaks. The deck also features a full-size pool. Kermit Huggins designed masterpiece – very open floor plan, 1st floor master, 2nd floor sitting and guest room, 3rd floor sitting area, detached guest quarters, detached garage with office or future quarters above. Unique private enclosed courtyard with a fountain. $1,185,000

ESCAPE TO YOUR OWN PRIVATE OASIS POOL surrounded by lush landscaping. Quiet location at the end of a cul-de-sac near the 4th fairway of the Country Club of Hilton Head and docks along the Intracoastal Waterway, Seabrook Farm and Spring Lake Pool complex. 5 bedroom, 4.5 bath, bonus room, smooth ceilings and wood floors. $719,000



OPPORTUNITY TO HAVE YOUR DREAM HOME BUILT – TD Peeples masterpiece – 3200+ SF, lagoon view at the entrance of prestigious Seabrook Landing in Hilton Head Plantation. Stucco exterior with stone accents. 4 en-suite bedrooms or 3 first floor suites plus a bonus room. Oversized garage, lagoon view screen porch and 2nd floor covered deck. 16.3 finished floor elevation. With the included allowances you will have a chance to make 4 Seabrook Landing the Lowcountry home you have always wanted. $872,500

ESTATE SIZE HOME with an outstanding view of the Country Club of Hilton Head’s 16th Fairway and Green. Close to HHP’s Spring Lake Pool and Tennis Complex. Also, for boaters, Skull Creek and Intracoastal Waterway. Located on a street of fine homes, it will be a fun place to call home. First floor master, plus 3 other ensuite Bedrooms, 5 Baths, a 2nd floor office & expansive bonus room over the garage. Formal Living Room has Brazilian cherry wood floors & a soaring ceiling. Eat-in Kitchen has granite & s/s and is open to the family room with coffered ceiling. These rooms flow out on to an expansive 2-level rear deck which has a Michael Phelps resistance pool built into the deck and paver patio with a firepit. Much More! $735,000



WOW! A lot of house for the money - great location, just off the 18th Green of Oyster Reef Golf Club, short distance to the Lager Head Tavern and the Bluff along the Port Royal Sound. Quiet cul-de-sac street. Home has been updated - open floor plan with smooth ceilings, LVP flooring, kitchen and baths with granite tops, recently painted, newer roof and HVAC system. Other features include; 3200+ SF, 4 BR/3.5 BA, 2-car side entry garage, Savannah Grey brick courtyard, winterized porch, two-sided masonry fireplace, wine cooler and wet bar, expansive kitchen/family room, outdoor showers and more. $575,000

OUTSTANDING QUALITY built & location. Enjoy panoramic tee to green views of the CC of Hilton Head’s 1st Fairway - short distance to the Clubhouse & the docks along Skull Creek/ICW. Bright & open contemporary split bedroom floor plan. Interior just been painted & ceiling made smooth, poly plumbing has been changed out. Features Brazilian tiger wood & marble flooring, plantation shutters, new HVAC in 2018, granite tops. 3 BR, 3 full BA, formal open DR & LR. LR has cathedral ceiling. Sunroom, kitchen/family room & a screen porch which goes the full length of the back of the house. 2-car garage, fireplace & new LED lighting & more. $536,000



THIS WELL MAINTAINED HOME could easily be transformed into a comfortable island oasis. Situated on quiet corner lot, you’ll enjoy a tranquil lagoon view w/ soothing fountain. Close to the Spring Lake Pool & Tennis complex. A one-level split bedroom plan w/ 3 BR, each w/ its own bath makes enjoying life easy & practical. Wood flooring, high ceilings, formal DR, LR w/ fireplace, family room off kitchen w/ breakfast area where memories will be made. Store your car & toys in the spacious 2-car garage. Successful long-term rental or move-in and begin the life you deserve. $458,800

A COTTAGE NESTLED UNDER mossdraped oaks with expansive views of Dolphin Head Golf Club’s 11th Green and 11th & 12th Fairway. Also, a short distance to the Pine Island Beach and Dolphin Head Beach Park. This 3 bedroom home features wood and tile floors, high ceilings, a masonry fireplace, expansive Carolina room/porch. This home is ready to be made yours and priced to be fixed up. $360,000

CHARTER ONE REALTY The One to Turn to for All Your Real Estate Needs

PRI cul-d over brigh floo and wirin room

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Frances Sampson (843) 681-3307 x4236 Mobile - (843) 384-1002

Angela Mullis (843) 681-3307 x4223 Mobile - (843) 384-7301

Debbie Cort (843) 681-3307 Mobile - (843) 384-8491

Give Charles, Frances, Angela, Debbie or Daniel a Call!

Daniel Cort (843) 681-3307 Mobile - (843) 384-2206


May Your Dream of a New Home Come True 25 HUNTING COURT BELFAIR



PRIVATE BELFAIR SETTING - end of cul-de-sac surrounded by moss draped oaks and overlooking a forest preserve. 4 BR, 4.5 BA, bright and open split bedroom floor plan. Cherry floors, high smooth ceilings, Dacor double oven and warming drawer, granite tops, smart house wiring, great room with coffered ceiling, dining room, sunroom and more! $498,500

CONTEMPORARY SOPHISTICATION meets Lowcountry Equestrian. If you have or want to have horses 8 Ghost Pony is over 2 acres of fenced and irrigated land, there is a barn with three stalls and air conditioned tack room. Located in the Estate side of Rose Hill and only a trot away from the Rose Hill Equestrian Center. 8 Ghost Pony is truly special. The residence is at the end of a Palmetto lined lane. Features include an open Kitchen/Great Room plan which opens to a wide 2nd floor deck. High coffered ceiling and limestone floors, split bedroom plan with a luxurious master suite. Two other en-suite bedrooms are on this main floor. On the second floor is an entire suite, kitchenette, living room and private bedroom. Multi-car garage. This fine property offers an exceptional value and a place for you and your horses to call home. $798,500

DEVELOPER’S FORMER MODEL HOME. Detailed trims & moldings, granite counters, smooth ceilings, California Closet details & more upgraded features. Features 1st floor master, open great room, powder room, 2-car garage, screen porch, paver patio w/ hot tub & open grassed area. 2nd floor has 2 BR, 1 BA plus the hall closet has been converted into a work station. Carolina Isles is a gated community on the north end of Hilton Head minutes away from the beach, schools, shopping and restaurants. $349,900




LARGER GOLF COTTAGE located towards the end of a cul-de-sac in Pinecrest. 2-story cottage features wood floors on the main floor with a foyer entrance, study, dining room, eat-in-kitchen and great room off of kitchen. Upstairs has 3 BR and 2 BA. Master bath has double vanities, separate shower and soaking tub. Covered porch off the eat-inkitchen overlooks the private backyard. Oversized two car driveway in front of the one car garage and open space on one side of the house. Pinecrest features a community pool, fitness, playground, basketball and tennis courts. $265,000

JOB RELOCATION INITIATES SALE of this brand new home! 3BR (master on 1st floor), 3 full BA, large loft, private office off of loft, formal dining (or flex) room with French Doors and numerous upgrades to this 2,694 sq. ft. beauty. High quality Mohawk wood flooring throughout (no carpet), customized kitchen w/ granite, flush mount cooktop, decorative tile behind hood, microwave built into large island, spray foam insulation, extended patio outside of screened porch overlooks lagoon. Bank appraised at $431K. Still under warranty, ready to move in & call home! $417,900

LOOKING FOR MAINTENANCE-FREE LIVING in an excellent location with an elevator and 1-car garage unit? Welcome to 21-308 Bridgepointe! Spacious 3 BR, 3 BA rare top-floor unit has all of that and more. Lovingly maintained and enjoyed as a second home, this condo boasts 1,561 SF. A screened-in balcony with an expansive lagoon view provides the perfect place to enjoy the outdoors with coffee or cocktails. Its prime location is 1.5 miles from Old Town Bluffton and 3 miles to the Hilton Head Bridge. $198,000




SIMPLY SPECTACULAR...the last marsh front home site in Belfair and what a home site it is. Located at the end of a private street, this panoramic beauty is nestled in the center of paradise with a front row Colleton River marsh view and views of the 14th Green, 15th Tee & 16th Green of Belfair’s Championship East course. Plans for an equally spectacular home designed by John Pittman II Architect included. $195,000

SITUATED ON THE 1ST HOLE OF THE ARTHUR HILLS GOLF COURSE, this beautiful home site not only provides privacy with a cul-de-sac location but also a unique shortcut to the Club and amenities. In addition, there are no homes on the other side of the golf course, further enhancing the peace and tranquility. The lifestyle that Palmetto Hall offers is stellar with a vibrant and active club, impeccable golf course and well-maintained amenities. $144,900

DEVELOPER OPPORTUNITY Residential and commercial development opportunity on highly visible corner of Hwy. 170. Adjacent to Oldfield, this 93.11 acre tract is made up of two parcels (65.92 acres; R600 008 000 0001 and 27.19 acres; R600 0008 000 0016 0000) and includes 2,600’ of road frontage. $6,975,000

#1 Ranked Real Estate Company in The Lowcountry




Stride forward




he holiday season is in full swing, and with it come the joys and tribulations of extra treats, visits with family and friends, and upsets in daily routines. For many of us, December means our regular exercise schedules are discarded like torn gift wrap. The holidays don’t have to create extra pounds, reduced endurance or crankiness. The trick is to figure out an exercise alternative that fits into your day, no matter how out of whack it is. Walking is one exercise that works for almost anyone. Here are five unexpected benefits:

1. It’s great for your heart We all have different fitness levels. If you run marathons, you might not think walking will get your heart pumping. Yet walking has so many heart benefits it’s even recommended for those recovering from heart attacks and surgeries. Dr. John Keleman, a cardio-thoracic surgeon with TenetHealth, the owner of Hilton Head and Coastal Carolina hospitals, includes walking as part of cardiac rehabilitation for his patients. “Since walking is self-modulated, everyone can find their own appropriate level of exertion,” he said. Keleman advises cardio patients to start walking as soon as possible after surgery but not to over-exert or go alone. 2. Walking goes where you go Walking requires basically no equipment. Being prepared for a good walking workout is as simple as keeping comfortable, weather-appropriate clothing and shoes

on your packing list. Sometimes it’s even possible to walk to errands or shopping. 3. Walking allows you time and space for yourself Let’s face it: being surrounded by friends and relatives for hours on end isn’t everyone’s cup of pumpkin or gingerbread spice. One advantage to walking, especially in mild Lowcountry weather, is that it takes you away from the chaos. When you want a little alone time or need to clear your head, a good walk gives you time to think. 4. Walking gives you time to catch up with others in a low-pressure environment Alternately, walking with a friend or family member gives you time to catch up on things you might not hear about at the Christmas dinner table. We all have that one friend or family member who makes us laugh with less-appropriate humor, knows all the family gossip, or

just makes us feel joyful. If you have such a person, time with them can be a breath of fresh air. Keneman reminds us: “You have somebody to talk to and someone who can hold you accountable while being on the lookout for your well-being. 5. Walking allows you to see places in a new light and go where you couldn’t otherwise The Lowcountry has incredible trails and outdoor spaces. Whether you’re here or elsewhere during the holidays, walking allows you to get a different sense of the area. Most places have walking or hiking clubs, and the internet can be a great resource for finding good paths. Looking up walking tours in a new city can be a fun way to take in sites while keeping your blood flowing. Remember, one of the blessings you can give yourself in January is a good exercise routine in December. Walking is a great way to achieve that.

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ver Memorial Day weekend, John Burk felt a lump in his neck that turned out to be malignant. Five months later, Burk found himself thousands of miles away, at Old Trafford stadium in England, home of Manchester United Football Club. A guest of Red Devils star Marcus Rashford, Buck was living a dream, watching his beloved team play. No, the cancer didn’t get him. And he really wasn’t dreaming. As surreal as it felt, Burk’s journey was real. It all started on a Saturday, when Burk noticed the lump on his neck. His wife insisted he have it checked out. Through his and his wife’s connections — both have worked in the medical field — he had the growth examined on Thursday and the node removed the following Tuesday. The biopsy came back positive. Stage 3 testicular cancer. Burk was dumbfounded. How could he have testicular cancer in his neck? It turns out microscopic cells can be left behind when the testes drop from behind the kidneys as a young man goes through puberty, and some of those cancerous cells made their way all the way up to his neck. The fear was there would be more malignant cells elsewhere in his body, but Burk dodged that bullet. It appeared the cancer was confined to his lymph nodes. Burk visited the same specialist in Indiana who treated cyclist Lance Armstrong’s testicular cancer, then returned home for a brutal nineweek chemotherapy regimen. When he returned to Indiana in September,


everything looked normal. “It’s still not a done deal, but even if it came back it’s still a 95 percent cure rate,” Burk said. “I never even had time to worry about anything.” Burk grew up in Atlanta and now lives in Pooler, but his soccer roots have spread to Hilton Head Island. He has played with the Hilton Head Wanderers semi-pro team the past few years, teaming up with former Mars Hill College teammates Dan and Matt Waymont. After Burk’s cancer scare, the Waymont brothers began raising money to take their friend on a journey to fulfill a Manchester United star Marcus Rashford (left) presented fan and cancer survivor John Burk with a signed jersey.

lifelong dream — seeing his beloved Reds play at Old Trafford. They were able to fund the trip easily enough, but getting a ticket to see Man U in person proved more difficult. It was Matt who had the idea to reach out to Rashford via social media, asking the star to help secure a highly-coveted ticket to a game against Brighton on Nov. 10. Matt sent the tweet on Sept. 15. Two days later, Rashford replied. “Hey man, drop me a DM,” he posted. “I’ll sort this for you.” Other strangers lined up in the replies to donate their tickets, and requests to contribute funds for the trip began flowing in, along with lodging at Hotel Football, a stone’s throw from Old Trafford (thanks to owner and former Man U defender Gary Neville). Invitations to be a guest at toptier restaurants in Manchester also came

Burk and his friends got the star treatment at Old Trafford stadium.

in, including one from former United star Rio Ferdinand’s Rosso Restaurant & Bar. Burk had no idea. He wasn’t on Twitter. So when the story went viral and a friend sent Burk the link from the Daily Mail, he was certain he had been pranked. “I’m reading it thinking someone went to a lot of trouble to pull this joke on me,” Burk said. “Then I realized, holy crap, this is actually real.” Burk felt he was in heaven from the time he boarded the plane to England until the Brighton match kicked off. The group — Burk, Dan and Matt Waymont, and their brother Andy — enjoyed hospitality and delicious food and rubbed elbows with some of their favorite footballers. They took a VIP tour of Old Trafford, enjoyed a 3-1 Man U victory from Rashford’s private luxury box, and were featured in a short documentary of the experience posted on Rashford’s website. It was, to say the least, a dream come true. “It’s hard to put into words. Just an unbelievable experience,” Burk said. “Beyond lucky, regardless of the circumstances.”

December 2019 183


Traveling with Tykes




f all modern man’s achievements, few are as wonderous as the ease with which we can travel the globe. What once was a months-long journey by steamship, train or pack mule can now be accomplished with an overnight flight and a shuttle bus, putting every horizon on the planet within a few hours’ reach. The more adventurous among you may want to continue your wanderlust even after you’ve started a family. But traveling with children is entirely different from traveling on your own. There are nap times to schedule, tummies that are


constantly rumbling, bathroom breaks that pop up with startling regularity and attention spans that are measured in nano seconds. So, our best advice for traveling with children is: Don’t. OK, we’re kidding. Beyond the general obligation to not leave children unattended for weeks on end, bringing them along on your adventures is a great way to broaden their horizons and see your destination anew through the eyes of a child. It’s just a matter of planning ahead. TravelPulse editor and contributor

Janeen Christoff has taken her young daughters nearly everywhere imaginable, from the jungles of Asia to the streets of Paris. She’s a wealth of advice when it comes to traveling with children. “Get to the airport early,” is Christoff’s first tip of many. She also urges parents to pack lightly, look for hotels with kidfriendly amenities like cribs, strollers and special menus, and above all, use a travel agent. “Not only will an advisor be able to streamline the trip and book the best hotels and activities, they will also be


there for you if something goes awry,” Christoff says. Preparing in advance is another secret weapon for successfully traveling with kids, says Hilton Head Island mom Ashley Harrold-Hamilton, who has taken her boys on many trips. “Check everything,” she advises. “Get a long layover so there isn’t stress getting to the next flight. Board last so the kids don’t have to sit as long. Bring changes of clothes in gallon Ziplock bags so the dirty ones, if need be, have a place to go.” While adults are used to the popping ears that comes with air travel, it’s a new experience for kids. “Fruit Roll-Ups and gummy fruits work great for little ones on a plane to help with the pressure in ears,”

Brought to you by:

says Heather Bragg of Bluffton. Some parents swear by Dramamine to help kids sleep on trips, but ask your doctor first. And when you’re on a long car trip, feel free to loosen the reins when it comes to what your kids eat. Beaufort resident Nathan Thorn advises giving in to their junk food cravings on road trips, if only to keep the peace. And no matter where you’re going, if you’re travelling with a baby or toddler, take along a roll of duct tape to cover outlets and keep drawers shut. So yes, it’s entirely possible to travel with kids. As with all things parental, it just requires advanced planning, endless patience and ample supplies of junk food, medicine and wipes.

Smart Parenting in the Lowcountry

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t''is the season PHOTOS BY MINDY JO FURBY




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“My parents had just finished an extensive kitchen renovation complete with new cabinets. I was making a holiday casserole and the broiler caught the dish on fire, and somehow I managed to catch the new cabinets on fire. I'm not allowed to cook there anymore.”

Ashley Cranford

“Once, on Christmas Eve we woke up to a huge crash. We ran downstairs to discover the tree had fallen over and made a huge mess. Smashed gifts, broken glass, power went out, etc. I still get very nervous around Christmas trees.”

Mike Barbano

“I actually pulled my back out during the holidays last year and couldn’t move. I couldn’t get out of bed and drive to see my family. It was pretty sad. I ate Taco Bell alone on Christmas Eve.”

Tony Brown


“When I was a kid, all I wanted for Christmas was a pair of Air Jordans. I was so thrilled on Christmas morning when I saw the Nike box in front of the tree. Sadly though, there were 2 left shoes in the box. That kind of thing stays with you.”

Genevieve Russell

Every holiday we'd go to my grandfather’s farm. One time, every person there got sick from eating deviled eggs. I was the only person who didn’t and the only person who wasn’t out of commission for 3 days. I still won’t go near a deviled egg.”

Ravenel Richardson

“When I was a misguided teen, some friends and I thought it would be a good idea to drive the club golf carts into a lagoon. It wasn’t. We got in a TON of trouble. We definitely got coal in our stockings that year. Along with a hefty attorney bill.”

Dylan Bailey

“Last year, I invited my family to spend Thanksgiving with us. I got the flu and my husband had to do everything. Kids, cook, entertain… all of it.

"One holiday I wish I could forget was the one when I got neutered. I had to wear some weird lamp shade contraption on my head for like 2 weeks. It was awful."

Mr. Henry

Andrea Creuzer

“I brought oyster dressing to a holiday party and when I got there, the dish exploded all over the host’s kitchen. It was really loud and really embarrassing. But a heck of an icebreaker.” Scott Skager

December 2019 193

››Where to Worship



orth Island Baptist Church began gathering in fall 1994 as a fellowship of seven families who wanted a Southern Baptist church on the north end of Hilton Head Island. After meeting in various temporary facilities, the fellowship moved in December 1998 to its current, permanent location at 3800 Main Street. A few months later, on Easter Sunday 1999, the fellowship became a fully recognized Southern Baptist church, with a membership of 100. North Island Baptist is a small, nonliturgical, God-centered church that offers a traditional worship service with a clear proclamation of God’s truth. The church’s mission is to encourage as many people as possible to have a relationship with God through Jesus Christ. “It’s a great place to be, a great place to worship,” the church’s pastor, Dr. Charles Kessler, said. North Island Baptist is made up of experienced Christians as well as new believers. There are even a few Roman


Catholics who attend the services, providing an ecumenical perspective within the fellowship of the church. Kessler, who has been a minister for almost 50 years, said the church is the most loving, caring, gracious church he’s ever been involved with. Ordained as a minister in 1973, Kessler became pastor of North Island Baptist in 2017. Before that, he’d been a chaplain in the U.S. Navy for 28 years. He also has served churches in Kentucky and Georgia. “I’ve seen a lot of pastors and met a lot of pastors,” North Island Baptist Church elder John Ballenger said. “Charlie is, by far, without a doubt, the best representative of the Word of God that I’ve met in my life.” Kessler is serious about his role as pastor and thankful for the opportunity. He struggled with a speech impediment as a child and received speech therapy throughout elementary school.The fact that God turned a little boy with challenges into a pastor who enjoys preaching is proof enough to Kessler that he’s in the right place.


The church will begin to celebrate Advent on Dec. 1 and gather for a Christmas dinner on Dec. 8. Worship services are at 10:30 a.m. Sundays, with Christian Education at 9:30 a.m. For more information on North Island Baptist Church, visit or call 843-689-3800. “I’m just a guy that God called to preach,” Kessler said. North Island provides a traditional Baptist worship service, singing hymns out of the hymnbook and preaching clearly biblically-based sermons. The service is supported by Karl Cline who leads the singing and Kiril Zahariev as the pianist. Zahariev was classicallytrained and won the prestigious Claude Kahn International Piano Competition in 1995 in Paris. He is planning a Spring concert at the church. The event will be free and open to the public.

Where toWorship AT ST. ANDREW BY-THE-SEA UNITED METHODIST CHURCH Hilton Head Campus - 20 Pope Ave 4:30 | 7:00 | 9:30pm Christmas Eve Under the Stars

6:30pm - Bluffton Oyster Factory Park

For more information & regular schedules in Bluffton & Hilton Head:

Lowcountry Presbyterian Church Surrounded by God’s grace, we are a family of faith joined together through Christ, offering meaning and hope to all by the way we worship, serve and live.

Sunday Worship Services at 8:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. Childcare available at 10:30 a.m. service 10 SIMMONSVILLE ROAD BLUFFTON, SC 29910 (INTERSECTION OF HWY 278)


Lord of Life Lutheran Church

We at Lord of Life Lutheran Church seek to serve in the name of Christ.

Sundays 8:30am and 10:30am 351 BUCKWALTER PARKWAY BLUFFTON, SC 29910

A strong faith community starts with a powerful message.


LET US HELP YOU REACH NEW MEMBERS. Contact: Heather Edge 843-707-2098

Photo courtesy of Delaware Symphony Orchestra



Jordan has served as executive director of the Delaware Symphony Orchestra since 2015, following 16 years in the same position with the Vermont Symphony Orchestra. He served in similar capacities with the New Hampshire Symphony Orchestra and the Brevard (FL) Symphony Orchestra. Jordan graduated from the New England Conservatory of Music in 1983 with a bachelor’s degree in music as a vocal performance major.

Orchestrating Change



Photo by W Photography


ortherners often move to Hilton Head Island seeking a slower pace and a step back from life in an urban center. Alan Jordan, who will leave the Delaware Symphony Orchestra at the end of the year to lead the Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra, has a different perspective. “This is a step up for me,” he said. The Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra has a larger budget and better outreach than its Delaware counterpart, Jordan said, even though this area is less populous than Wilmington. Much of the credit for the HHSO’s success—and for finding Jordan— goes to its president and CEO Mary Briggs, who is retiring at the end of the year. Under her guidance, the orchestra’s reputation for quality and diversity in music programing grew, as did its subscriber base and concert attendance. During her 12-year leadership, the HHSO survived the financial crisis of 2008, which sunk many other city orchestras, and grew into one of Hilton Head Island’s leading arts organizations. Last year, the orchestra’s operating budget was about $2.4 million and a new 255-seat rehearsal and performance space, SoundWaves, opened. After Briggs announced her retirement, Jordan approached her at a League of American Orchestras conference and expressed interest in the position. “I’ve known and respected him for 12 years through this professional organization,” Briggs said. “We’re colleagues.” After visiting Hilton Head Island twice for interviews with Briggs, board chairman Bob Cherichella and others, Jordan was offered and accepted the job. Briggs plans to help smooth the transition. “I told Alan I’ll take him to lunch every week and introduce him to important people,” she said, adding that in retirement she plans to become more involved in volunteer work and will assume presidencies of the Hilton Head Rotary Club and the Greater Island Council within the next two years. Jordan’s goals on Hilton Head Island include growing and diversifying the symphony’s audience, pursuing grants and continuing community outreach, especially with students. An important strategy for the Hilton Head Symphony is to develop many donors at the modest level, he said. “My target for that new audience member is an empty nester,” Jordan said.

Jordan also brings to the HHSO years of experience with securing grants. Under his leadership, the Vermont Symphony Orchestra received funding from the National Endowment for the Arts. Jordan said he also has worked to secure the private endowments and corporate philanthropy. The issue of a performance hall for the Lowcountry also is on Jordan’s radar. Currently, HHSO’s classical concerts and many of its pops offerings are held at First Presbyterian Church on Hilton Head Island, which seats 900. But some of the seats aren’t ideal for live classical music and the stage is too small for presenting an orchestra’s full breadth of music. Also, the HHSO isn’t able to serve food and alcohol at the church. Supporters of the drive to build a large performance hall— which everyone concurs would take years—imagine sharing a state-of-the-art, 1,100-1,200-seat facility with tiered seating Mary Briggs is retiring after 12 years of leading the Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra. She is helping Alan Jordan transition into the job.

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with other community and arts groups. Briggs has said she plans to support the drive to build a performance hall “with my time, talents and financial resources.” “This is one of the things that I’m excited about pursuing and exploring when I get down there,” Jordan said. “I’m not coming down with an agenda. I’d like to learn what has been discussed and who it has been discussed with.” From Delaware, Jordan is working with music director and conductor John Russell and a committee of board members to plan the HHSO’s 39th season, which will continue HHSO traditions including a holiday concert, the Hilton Head International Piano Competition and “symphonies under the stars. Jordan, a fan of rich, German “romantic music,” said his favorite composers are Brahms and Strauss. He enjoyed attending the Latin Grammys in Las Vegas last year after the Delaware Symphony Orchestra was nominated for an award. He’d also like to present some lesser-known works on Hilton Head. “They haven’t done any Mahler symphonies. They are not easy-listening but they are life changing. You have to program Beethoven. But a true test of how much trust you’ve developed with your audience is when they come to hear works they aren’t familiar with,” he said. He hopes to present a variety of guest artists, composition periods, and music that’s local or has a connection to the Gullah culture. Jordan said the Lowcountry has welcomed his wife Karen, who started as a music teacher at Joseph S. Shanklin Elementary School in Beaufort last month. The couple has a daughter, Katie, who is a professional French horn player in New York City and a son, Christopher, a graduate student at Cleveland Institute of Music and bass trombone player. The Jordans also have a golden retriever, who Alan is looking forward to taking to the beach. “I’m ready to head South,” he said. “There were so many signs that this was the right move for us.”

Did you recently get engaged? Coming February




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Sing out strong




n a recent weekend, with just a few rehearsals left to go before their big holiday concert, members of the Hilton Head Choral Society are hard at work. As they practice in the sun-drenched dining room at the Country Club of Hilton Head, their attention seems to shift from Tim Reynolds, their longtime artistic director, to their sheet music. Paying close attention to the sheet music is critical: they’ve marked up every page in pencil to make sure they give Reynolds exactly what he wants from each alto, tenor, soprano, and bass when singing a particular bar of music. The singers take Reynolds, and the music, very seriously. As Reynolds moves among them, he keeps time by snapping his fingers. “It’s trickier than it looks, it’s trickier than it sounds,” he says of the “Nativity Carol” they’re rehearsing.


There is an easy camaraderie, but the choir is not goofing around. The concert -- their biggest of the year -- is a little more than a month away and there’s no time to waste. Among the choir’s 85 members are six married couples, united by their love of music, which brings them to practice every Sunday night for two hours. Sheryl Lowe joined the choral society in 2012. “I would be singing songs at home, and my husband, Walter, would join in,” she said. “One Christmas, I unwrapped one of my presents from him, and it was a program. I said to him, ‘What’s this? Did you buy season tickets? He said, ‘I joined!’ ” That was a quite a Christmas present, Sheryl said. “We come every week now. It’s something that we can do together. This is something that we both enjoy.”

The Hilton Head Choral Society's 85 members are united by their love of music and devotion to artistic director Tim Reynolds (below).

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Among the choir’s members are six married couples who enjoy singing together under the direction of Tim Reynolds.

Bill Thorpe, a member for four years, also joined the chorus after his wife, Judy, became a member. “Judy would go out to rehearsal, and I would stay at home,” he said. “Then I started to come to rehearsals and wait for her. Tim approached me and said, ‘If you’re going to be here, why don’t you sing?’ ” “ ‘I don’t know how to sing,’ I told him. ‘I’ll put you between two great tenors,” he said.’ ” Bill has been singing since. Rick Lazzari and Margie Lechowicz are newbies to the group, having joined in the last year. But for 25 years they have always sung together, in church and community choirs. And like every member of the chorus, they are devoted to the artistic director. “He corrects your mistakes, but in a jovial fashion, ” Rick said. “He’ll say, ‘I don’t hear it, tenors!’ ” Maybe there’s something to be said for working together to ‘harmonize’ in a many faceted way,” Rick said. “I've always had married couples in my choirs,” Reynolds said. “We've even had a few romances develop within the HHCS over my 19 years. For the couples, the happiness that singing brings comes into play before, during and after performances. “After each concert, I just get this glow,” Sheryl Lowe said. “The two of us are just so happy with each other.”


The Sounds of Christmas On Dec. 13, Tim Reynolds will conduct “The Sounds of Christmas,” his 19th Christmas concert as artistic director of the Hilton Head Choral Society. Reynolds knows that the audience comes to the concert expecting holiday favorites, and they won’t be disappointed this year. At the same time, he is always hunting for a new twist on a traditional song. For example, this year the choir will sing “Jingle Bells” a la Mozart. This year’s 90-minute concert includes 16 pieces for the chorus, including “Sleigh Ride,” “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” and “Ave Maria,” among others, and two pieces for the orchestra alone. “The Sounds of Christmas” will be at 7 p.m. Dec. 13 at the First Presbyterian Church, 540 William Hilton Parkway. Tickets are $25-$40 adult; $10-$15 children. To purchase: Call 843-341-3818, go to or email

››Calendar | DECEMBER

Dec. 7 BLUFFTON CHRISTMAS PARADE: Watch holiday floats roll through Old Town during the annual Bluffton Christmas Parade. Rain or shine. Free. 10 a.m.. Check website for parade route through historic Bluffton.

THROUGH DEC. 21 SANTA VISITS SHELTER COVE: Santa and Mrs. Claus will greet children and take photos. Free. 5-7 p.m., Shelter Cove Towne Centre, 40 Shelter Cove Lane, Hilton Head Island. 843-686-3090 or

THROUGH DEC. 31 HOLIDAY LIGHTS AT SHELTER COVE: Enjoy holiday lights all season long at this spectacular display. Free. Shelter Cove Towne Centre, 40 Shelter Cove Lane, Hilton Head Island.

THROUGH JAN. 1 HARBOUR TOWN LIGHTS: Stroll along the harbor and enjoy illuminated seasonal figures and a towering Christmas tree. Featuring live entertainment and activities throughout the month. Free. Harbour Town, 149 Lighthouse Road, Hilton Head Island. 843-8421979 or


DEC. 1 BROAD CREEK CLEAN UP: Join The Outside Foundation for a day of collecting litter by foot, kayak, boat or bike. Limited number of free kayaks available with reservation. Free. 11 a.m.- 3 p.m., Shelter Cove Marina, 1 Shelter Cove Lane, Hilton Head Island. 843-686-6996 or

DEC. 1-2 A VISIT FROM ST. NICHOLAS: A fun performance featuring holiday favorites with Conductor John Morris Russell. Reception to follow. Tickets are $10-$60. 5 p.m., Sunday; 8 p.m., Monday. First Presbyterian Church, 540 William Hilton Parkway, Hilton Head Island. 843-842-2055 or

DEC. 2 THE MANY BENEFITS OF SHARKS: Dr. Kim Ritchie will share her experiences with sharks

and their benefits to humans, our ecosystems and our planet. Reservations required. Cost is $7. 2 p.m., Coastal Discovery Museum, 70 Honey Horn Drive, Hilton Head Island. 843-689-6767, ext. 223, or WOMEN’S ASSOCIATION OF HILTON HEAD LUNCHEON: John Morris Russell, Maestro of the Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra, will be the keynote speaker of the December WAHHI luncheon. Cost is $34 for members, $39 for guests. 10:30 a.m., Omni Oceanfront Resort, 23 Ocean Lane, Hilton Head Island. Email reservations@wahhi. org or visit

DEC. 3 HIGH WIRE WHISKEY DINNER: Experience a four-course meal paired with High Wire whiskey. Cost is $100. 6:30 p.m., Whiskey Room at Charbar, 33 Office Park Road, Suite 215, Hilton Head Island. 843785-2427 or

DEC. 3-24 A CHRISTMAS TRADITION AT SAVANNAH THEATRE: The theatre is decorated to the hilt as a backdrop to favorite Christmas songs, a little comedy and audience participation. Tickets are $39 for adults, $19.50 for children. Times vary. Historic Savannah Theatre, 222 Bull Street, Savannah. 912233-7764 or

DEC. 4 FORSYTHE JEWELERS HOLIDAY OPEN HOUSE: Browse from a large selection of top brand jewelry designers, MacKenzie-Childs and more. Enjoy complimentary gift wrapping with any purchase. 4-7 p.m., Forsythe Jewelers, 71 Lighthouse Road, Suite 311, Hilton Head Island. 843-671-7070 or OSPREY WATCH: Kristen Mattson will host a presentation about ospreys and their importance to the environment. Reservations required.

Cost is $7. 2 p.m., Coastal Discovery Museum, 70 Honey Horn Drive, Hilton Head Island. 843-689-6767, ext. 223, or PALMETTO PLANT EATERS CLUB: Guest speaker Kerri Dodson will discuss the scientific benefits of intermittent fasting, the different approaches and the positive effects it has on health. Free. 6:30 p.m., Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Lowcountry, 110 Malphrus Road, Bluffton.

DEC. 4-29 KISS ME KATE: A romanticcomedy and holiday musical performance where a former husband and wife ignite a fiery chemistry onstage and off. Cost is $61 for adults, $47 for children. Times vary. Arts Center of Coastal Carolina, 14 Shelter Cove Lane, Hilton Head Island. 843-842-2787 or

DEC. 5 CREATING WARTIME FAMILY REUNIONS WITH DNA: In honor of Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day, Genealogist Bonnie Wade-Mucia speaks about the work she does to find family members of KIA/ MIA soldiers from WWII. Free. 4 p.m., Morris Center for Lowcountry Heritage, 10782 South Jacob Smart Boulevard, Ridgeland. 843-2849227 or THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION ROUND TABLE: A luncheon to explore historic events and people of the Revolutionary era, emphasizing the importance and influence of the South. 11:30 a.m., TidePointe, 700 TidePointe Way, Hilton Head Island. 843-422-0091 or 843-707-7562.

DEC. 6 BLUFFTON TREE LIGHTING CEREMONY: Mayor Lisa Sulka will announce the grand marshal of the Bluffton Christmas Parade and town leaders will light the Bluffton Christmas tree. Refreshments will be served at the pavilion, where Santa will greet children. Free. 5:30-7:30 p.m., DuBois Park,

67 Lawrence Street, Bluffton. GULLAH KINFOLK CHRISTMAS PERFORMANCE: Experience the spirit of the holiday season with a celebration of Gullah-Geechee culture, live music, original art, drama and storytelling. Cost is $35 in advance, $40 at the door. 7 p.m., USCB Performing Arts Center, 805 Carteret Street, Beaufort. LOWCOUNTRY FOOD AND TRADITIONS: Enjoy Lowcountry boil, an oyster roast and live entertainment. Cost is $50 for adults, $40 for children. 7 p.m., Hudson’s Seafood on the Docks, 1 Hudson Road, Hilton Head Island. 843-686-6560 or WINTER WONDERLAND FESTIVAL: A community holiday festival featuring carnival games, a children’s parade, a visit from Santa, golden candy cane hunt and more. Concessions, trampoline bungee and rock wall sold separately. Free. 4-8 p.m., Shelter Cove Community Park, 39 Shelter Cove Lane, Hilton Head Island. WORLD AFFAIRS COUNCIL: Michael Shifter will discuss the chaos in Venezuela. Cost is free for members, $15 for guests. 10-11:30 a.m., First Presbyterian Church, 540 William Hilton Pkwy, Hilton Head Island. 30TH ANNUAL TASTE OF THE SEASON: Join the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce with over 40 local restaurants serving up their best dishes and trying out new recipes. The event will also feature a silent auction. Cost is $65 for general admission, $125 for VIP tickets. 6-9 p.m., Marriott Hilton Head Resort & Spa, 1 Hotel Circle, Hilton Head Island.

DEC. 6-8 BEAUFORT HOLIDAY WEEKEND: A weekend of fun, family-friendly events, including a lighted boat parade and Christmas parade. Free. Times and locations vary. For more information “like” the event on Facebook. December 2019 205

››Calendar ARTISAN MARKET: Stop by the museum grounds to enjoy local artisans, storytellers, authors and more, including the South Carolina 2nd Regiment. Cost is $10 for adults, $2 for children ages 10-16, free for children under 10. 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Coastal Discovery Museum, 70 Honey Horn Drive, Hilton Head Island. 843-6866560 or BLUFFTON CHRISTMAS PARADE: Watch holiday floats roll through Old Town during the annual Bluffton Christmas Parade. Rain or shine. Free. 10 a.m.. Check website for parade route through historic Bluffton.

Artful Endornments

CHRISTMAS ON THE RIVER: Celebrate the holiday season on River Street. Featuring fun events including visits from Santa, a Waterfront Kidz Zone, live bands and dance groups. Free. Savannah Waterfront, Savannah. For schedule call 912-234-0295 or go to riverstreetsavannah. com. GULLAH KINFOLK CHRISTMAS PERFORMANCE: Experience the spirit of the holiday season with a celebration of GullahGeechee feasts, live music, original art, drama and storytelling. Cost is $35 in advance, $40 at the door. 7 p.m., USCB Performing Arts Center, 805 Carteret Street, Beaufort. RACQUETS FOR RESEARCH: A tennis benefit for breast cancer research. Participants will enjoy tennis instruction with local professionals, followed by a wine and cheese happy hour. 2-4 p.m., Palmetto Dunes, 6 Trent Jones Lane, Hilton Head Island. 803-781-2574, ext. 101, or

DEC. 6-9 HERITAGE LIBRARY HISTORIC HOLIDAYS: A weekend of Sea Island traditions, featuring Lowcountry foods, historic church experiences, holiday market, trolley and bike tours, historic regiment encampment, ancestry research and a community tree lighting. Reservations required. Tickets are $5-$50. Times and locations vary. 843-686-6560 or

DEC. 7 A CHRISTMAS STORY: Watch this classic Christmas movie under the Liberty Oak. Benches and a roaring fire in the fire pit will be provided. Please bring a canned food item for donation. 7-9 p.m., Harbour Town, 149 Lighthouse Road, Hilton Head Island. 843-842-1979 or 206

COOKIES AND COCOA WITH SANTA: Stop by the Bluffton Chamber of Commerce after the Bluffton Christmas Parade for a visit with Santa, plus complimentary cookies and hot cocoa. Please bring a toy for donation. 12-2 p.m., Greater Bluffton Chamber of Commerce, 217 Goethe Road, Bluffton. 843-757-1010 or CHRISTMAS TASTE OF GULLAH AND RICE COOK-OFF: The event will feature live entertainment and vendors selling a variety of Gullah foods. “Just fo’ da’ Chillun” school shows will give children a chance to enjoy live theater while learning about the Gullah-Geechee heritage and history. Free. 12-5 p.m., Henry C. Chambers Waterfront Park, Bay Street, Beaufort. CITY MARKET CHRISTMAS FOR KIDS: Make ornaments, decorate cookies, get “Grinched” and more during this fun event for the whole family. Free. 11 a.m.-2 p.m., Savannah City Market, 219 West Bryan Street, Savannah. 912-234-2344 or COLLINS GROUP REALTY TOY DRIVE: Bring a new, unwrapped toy to the parade. Collins Group Realty’s elves will pick up toy donations as they come down the parade route. All donations will go to Bluffton Self Help’s Holiday Toy Shop to help local families in need this holiday season. Free. 10 a.m.-12 p.m., Bluffton Christmas Parade, Old Town Bluffton. 843-837-6700 or HISTORIC HILTON HEAD BY TROLLEY: Tour Hilton Head Island historic sites by trolley. Cost is $15 for adults, $5 for children. 9:30 a.m., 10:15 a.m., 11 a.m., 1:15 p.m., 2 p.m., Coastal Discovery Museum, 70 Honey Horn Drive, Hilton Head Island. 843-686-6560 or SAVANNAH SANTA TRAIN: Enjoy visits from Santa, caroling, a holiday winter wonderland, Gullah-Geechee cultural celebrations and more during this fun and festive day. 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Georgia State Railroad Museum, 655 Louisville

Road, Savannah. 912-651-6823 or SOUTH INDIAN CLASSICAL DANCE: This program was designed to introduce and build new audiences to the South Indian Dance form called Bharata Natyam. Cost is $20. 6-7:30 p.m., One Yoga Sanctuary, 73 Sea Island Parkway, Lady’s Island. 843-476-1388 or

DEC. 7, 14, 21 PHOTOS AND STORY TIME WITH SANTA: Join Santa at the Village at Wexford for a complimentary holiday photo and story time. Free. 2:45-5 p.m., Village at Wexford, 1000 William Hilton Parkway, Hilton Head Island.

DEC. 7-21 SOBA HOLIDAY BOUTIQUE: The artists of the Society of Bluffton Artists are creating original, one-of-a-kind handmade gifts available for purchase. Prices range $15-$350. 11 a.m.-3 p.m., Sundays; 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Mondays-Saturdays. Center for Creative Arts, 6 Church Street, Bluffton. 843-757-6586 or

DEC. 8 COMMUNITY CHRISTMAS PARTY: A fun holiday party hosted by the Hilton Head Humane Association. Free. 12-2 p.m., Hilton Head Humane Association, 10 Humane Way, Hilton Head Island. 843-681-8686 or FALL FESTIVITIES AT PROVIDENCE CHURCH: An oyster roast, advent walk and tree lighting will follow the regular Sunday worship services. Also includes crafts for children, a bonfire and caroling. Cost is $15 for adults, $4 for children under 12. 3-6 p.m., Providence Church, 171 Cordillo Parkway, Hilton Head Island. 832-8425673. FOUR CORNERS EXPANSION PARTY: Celebrate Four Corners Gallery’s recent expansion with a fun open house event. Free. 2-6 p.m., Four Corners Gallery, 1263 B May River Road, Bluffton. 843-757-8185 or FRESH HAIKU EXHIBIT: An opening reception for artist Missy Gentile’s exhibit, on display through Jan. 5. Free. 3-5 p.m., SoBA Gallery, 6 Church Street, Bluffton. 843-757-6586 or sobagallery. com. 843-686-6560 or TOUR OF THE CIVIL WAR BY BIKE: Bike through Hilton Head’s dramatic Civil War history with tours at Zion Cemetery, Fort Walker, Fort Sherman, The Steam Gun Cannon, and the Headlands. Cost is $25, or $35 with bike rental. 11 a.m., 12 p.m., 1 p.m., 2 p.m, Port Royal Clubhouse, 10 Clubhouse Drive, Hilton Head Island.

››Calendar WINE DOWN WEDNESDAY: Join in this progressive wine tasting walk for a good cause. Cost is $15. 5-8 p.m., Village at Wexford, 1000 William Hilton Parkway, Hilton Head Island.

DEC. 12 PLANTATION PROFILES: Colleton County: Director of Exhibitions and Programs Kayleigh Vaughn will give insight on some the plantations from the Colleton County region. Free. 5 p.m., Morris Center for Lowcountry Heritage, 10782 South Jacob Smart Boulevard, Ridgeland. 843-284-9227 or Visit Santa at Wexford Village

WORSHIP WITH OUR COMMUNITY: Historic Queen Chapel AME Church: A reading of a Christmas Story in the Gullah language followed by the choir singing Christmas carols and history of the church. Gumbo for sale. Free. 1 p.m., Historic Queen Chapel AME Church, 114 Beach City Road, Hilton Head Island. 843-686-6560 or WORSHIP WITH OUR COMMUNITY: Central Oak Grove Missionary Baptist Church: Established by the Gullah Community in 1887, join for their weekly service with a traditional gospel choir. Free. 10 a.m., 5 p.m., Central Oak Grove Missionary Baptist Church, 161 Mathews Drive, Hilton Head Island. 843-686-6560 or

DEC. 9 LIGHTING OF THE BIG OAK TREE: This annual tradition brings together the entire community to reflect on and honor the people who first experienced freedom at Historic Mitchelville. Free. 5:30 p.m., Mitchelville Freedom Park, 226 Beach City Road, Hilton Head Island. 843-686-6560 or


OUR LIFELONG FRIENDSHIP WITH BERNIE SCHEIN: Bernie Schein, Pat Conroy’s best friend, will share stories of their friendship. Reservations required. Cost is $7. 2 p.m., Coastal Discovery Museum, 70 Honey Horn Drive, Hilton Head Island. 843-689-6767, ext. 223, or RESEARCH YOUR ROOTS: Learn about people who lived and died on Hilton Head Island during the Civil War and use their documents and government dispositions to trace your family tree. Cost is $5, or free with any Historic Holiday event ticket. 11 a.m.-2 p.m., The Heritage Library, 2 Corpus Christi, Suite 100, Hilton Head Island. 843-686-6560 or

DEC. 10 USCB LUNCH WITH AUTHOR SERIES: Cassandra King Conroy, author of Tell Me a Story: My Life with Pat Conroy, will be the featured author at this monthly luncheon. Cost is $45. 12-1:30 p.m., Country Club of Hilton Head, 70 Skull Creek Drive, Hilton Head Island. 843-521-4145.

DEC. 11 ARTFUL ADORNMENT: JEWELRY AND BEYOND: Four local jewelry designers will showcase their beaded works that are on display through December. Artist reception includes a meet and greet. Free. 5-7 p.m., Art League Gallery, 14 Shelter Cove Lane, Hilton Head Island. 843-681-5060 or CYBER-BULLYING PREVENTION COMMUNITY FORUM: NAMI Lowcountry is sponsoring this community forum to help parents learn what to do to help children when teasing, rumors, isolation and physical intimidation don’t stop. 5-7 p.m. Seahawk Cultural Center at Hilton Head Island High School, 70 Wilborn Rd, Hilton Head Island. For more information: OVERWINTERING HUMMINGBIRDS: Doreen Cubie will speak about her research on hummingbirds wintering in South Carolina. Reservations required. Cost is $7. 2 p.m., Coastal Discovery Museum, 70 Honey Horn Drive, Hilton Head Island. 843-689-6767, ext. 223, or

SHOP FOR GOOD: Outside is hosting a benefit for Volunteers in Medicine at their store in The Plaza at Shelter Cove, including a Barbour trunk show, small bites, wine, champagne and Sailin’ Shoes Lager brewed by Hilton Head Brewing Co. 20% of sales during the event will benefit VIM Hilton Head. 4:30-6:30 p.m. 50 Shelter Cove Ln, Hilton Head Island.

DEC. 12–22 LEAN ENSEMBLE: “Every Brilliant Thing”: Matt Mundy stars in a one man show about the human experience. Cost is $40 for adults, $15 for students and military. Times vary. Soundwaves, 7 Lagoon Road, Hilton Head Island. 843-715-6676 or

DEC. 13 HILTON HEAD CHORAL SOCIETY CHRISTMAS CONCERT: Celebrate the Christmas season at the Hilton Head Choral Society’s annual holiday concert The Sounds of Christmas, featuring the 85-voice chorus with orchestra. Cost is $25-$40 for adults, $10-$15 for children. 7 p.m., First Presbyterian Church, 540 William Hilton Parkway, Hilton Head Island. 843-341-3818 or

HEARTWARMING CLASSIC BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT: A basketball tournament to raise money for Bluffton Police Department’s Shop With A Cop Program. Donations welcome. Cost is $3 for admission, free for children under 5. 5:30 p.m., Bluffton High School Gymnasium, 12 H.E. McCracken Circle, Bluffton. “Like” the event on Facebook.

DEC. 14 COFFEE AND CHOCOLATE FEST: Sample and savor some of the best of the Lowcountry’s mouth-watering chocolates and distinctive coffee roasts, featuring local chocolatiers and coffee roasters. Free. 12-4 p.m., Calhoun Street, Bluffton. 843-757-0508 or GINGERBREAD DECORATING CONTEST: Join the biggest cookie decorating contest in the area with all proceeds benefiting The Sandbox. Featuring full breakfast, photos in the gingerbread cottage, prize giveaways and holiday gifts. Tickets are $5. 9-11 a.m., Holiday Inn Express, 2 Tanglewood Drive, Hilton Head Island. 843-8426662. LITTLE ELF WORKSHOP: Bring your little ones to Harbour Town for reindeer games, crafts, hot chocolate, cookies and a surprise visit by Sea Pines mascot Albert the Alligator. Participants will receive elf ears and write a letter to Santa Claus. Cost is $10 for children 15 and under, adults must bring canned food donation. 1-3 p.m., Harbour Town, Hilton Head Island. 843-842-1979 or PET VISITS WITH SANTA: Santa will take pictures with your pet to benefit the Hilton Head Humane Association. Donations accepted. Free. 12-2 p.m., Shelter Cove Towne Centre, 40 Shelter Cove Lane, Hilton Head Island. 843-686-3090 or SAVANNAH FAIRYTALE BALL: Experience magical moments and meet fairytale princesses while enjoying candy buffets, crafts, stories, songs, games and free

professional princess portraits. Tickets $20-$55. Times vary. Savannah Convention Center, 1 International Drive, Savannah. ST. FRANCIS REINDEER RUN 5K: This new 5K race is sponsored by St. Francis Catholic School. Breakfast will be provided by The Salty Dog and the first 125 runners to register will receive a custom t-shirt. Cost is $30 per person, $100 per family. 7-10 a.m., St. Francis Catholic School, 45 Beach City Road, Hilton Head Island. 843681-6501 or SANTA AND THE GINGERBREAD TRAIL: Join Santa for photos and a gingerbread trail map of treats for kids. Free. 3-5 p.m., Village at Wexford, 1000 William Hilton Parkway, Hilton Head Island.

DEC. 15 CHRISTMAS AT PROVIDENCE CHURCH: A single service featuring Dr.JooSoo Sun and the Providence choirs with instruments. Brunch to follow. Free. 10 a.m., Providence Church, 171 Cordillo Parkway, Hilton Head Island. 832-842-5673. SIXTH ANNUAL BUFFALO RUN: Explore the unspoiled natural beauty of the Lowcountry during Palmetto Bluff’s sixth annual 10K, 30K or 50K trail race that traverses the 20,000-acre property. 6:30 a.m.-12 p.m., Palmetto Bluff, 19 Village Park Square, Bluffton.

DEC. 17 SOUNDWAVES CABARET SERIES: “Holiday Swing”: A true Lowcountry holiday experience featuring the hits of Frank Sinatra, Michael Bublé, Andy Williams and Tony Bennett. Cost is $25. 7-9 p.m., Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra, 7 Lagoon Road, Suite 100, Hilton Head Island. 843-842-2055 or

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››Calendar DEC. 18 THIRTEEN STRIPES BEER DINNER: Enjoy an evening of delicious food and craft beer, featuring Greenville-based 13 Stripes Brewery. Guests will experience a five-course dinner, paired with five different 13 Stripes beers. Cost is $35. 6 p.m., Old Oyster Factory, 101 Marshland Road, Hilton Head Island. 843-681-6040 or WHALES OF THE NORTH ATLANTIC OCEAN: Professor Michael Williamson will discuss different types of whales that inhabit the North Atlantic, their biology and more. Reservations required. Cost is $7. 2 p.m., Coastal Discovery Museum, 70 Honey Horn Drive, Hilton Head Island. 843-6896767, ext. 223, or

DEC. 20 HOLIDAY BOAT PARADE: Guests young and old can watch an array of lights during Palmetto Bluff’s inland waterway Holiday Board Parade. Festively decorated kayaks and canoes will pass right by the Octagon Dock for all to admire. Free. 5-7 p.m., Octagon Dock, Palmetto Bluff, Bluffton. HOLIDAY CONCERT: A holiday concert with the Sun City Chimers, Jubilate Ringers from the Lowcountry Presbyterian Church, and Wesley Ringers from Bluffton United Methodist Church. Donations appreciated. Free. 7 p.m., Lord of Life Lutheran Church, 351 Buckwalter Parkway, Bluffton. 843-757-4774. MOSCOW BALLET’S GREAT RUSSIAN NUTCRACKER: Step into a simpler time filled with sweet dreams and Christmas magic. With world-class artists, over 200 dazzling costumes, stunning sets and towering puppets. Ticket prices range $33.50-$179.50. 3-5:20 p.m., Lucas Theatre for the Arts, 32 Abercorn Street, Savannah. or


DEC. 21 POLAR PINES EXPRESS HOLIDAY WAGON RIDE: Hop aboard the festive wagon and arrive at the North Pole. Children will be invited to hear classic story ‘The Polar Express,’ create a paper conductor’s hat, and enjoy cookies and hot chocolate. Reservations required. $16 for adults, $13 for children under 12. 1-2:30 p.m., Heritage Farm, Hilton Head Island. 843-842-1979 or

DEC. 23 GREGG RUSSEL CHRISTMAS CONCERT: The holidays on Hilton Head Island wouldn’t be complete without Gregg Russell playing his guitar and singing songs of the season for children and adults. Before and after the concert, enjoy a special visit from Santa Claus. Free. 5:30-9 p.m., Harbour Town, 149 Lighthouse Road, Hilton Head Island. 843-842-1979 or

DEC. 24 CHRISTMAS EVE AT MORELAND VILLAGE: Enjoy fresh oysters, Lowcountry boil, plus other sides and fixins prepared by the chefs at Palmetto Bluff. Reservations required. Cost is $85 for adults, $39 for children ages 5-12, free for children under 4. 6-9 p.m., Moreland Village, 19 Village Park Square, Bluffton. 833-2320854 or CHRISTMAS EVE AT PROVIDENCE CHURCH: Children are invited to arrive 15 minutes early to become a part of the annual “live manger” during the service. 4 p.m., Providence Church, 171 Cordillo Parkway, Hilton Head Island. 832842-5673. CHRISTMAS EVE UNDER THE STARS: A family-oriented service with carols, the lighting of candles and refreshments. Free. 6:30 p.m., Oyster Factory Park, 63 Wharf Street, Bluffton. 843-785-4711 or

HILTON HEAD HOSPITAL JINGLE JINGLE RUN: A family 5K run and health walk featuring an awards ceremony, visits from Santa, refreshments, music and door prizes. Holiday costumes encouraged. Cost is $45 for adults, free for children. 8-11 a.m., Hilton Head Hospital, 25 Hospital Center Boulevard, Hilton Head Island. 843757-8520 or

DEC. 25 CHRISTMAS BRUNCH: Gather the whole family to celebrate Christmas in true Lowcountry style, including a lavish and festive brunch with traditional favorites. Reservations required. Cost is $125 for adults, $45 for children ages 5-12, free for children under 4. 11 a.m.-3 p.m., Montage Palmetto Bluff, 477 Mount Pelia Road, Bluffton. 833-232-0854 or

DEC. 27-29 HOLIDAY FUN IN HARBOUR TOWN: Gather around the Liberty Oak to watch classic holiday movies,

roast marshmallows and enjoy train rides, games and activities. Please bring canned food item for donation. $5 per passenger for train ride. 6 p.m., Harbour Town, 149 Lighthouse Road, Hilton Head Island. 843-8421979 or

DEC. 28 LATIN CHRISTMAS WHITE-OUT PARTY: Celebrate the holidays in all white clothing. Featuring a DJ and VIP booths available for purchase. Cover charge is $5. 9 p.m.-2 a.m., Rooftop Bar at Poseidon, 38 Shelter Cove Lane, Hilton Head Island. 843341-3838 or

Gullah Kinfolk Christmas

DEC. 30 MORELAND HOLIDAY GATHERING: Celebrate the impending new year as chefs cook up oysters fresh from the river, plus other sides and fixins. Reservations required. Cost is $85 for adults, $39 for children ages 5-12, free for children under 4. 6-9 p.m., Moreland Landing, 19 Village Park Square, Bluffton. 833-232-0854 or

DEC. 31 BUBBLES AND BLISS: An exclusive event featuring a decadent six-course dinner with Moet Champagne pairings. Participation in this dinner includes access to the Rockin’ on the River party. Must be 21 or over. Cost is $225 for guests, $180 for members. 7-9 p.m., River House, Palmetto Bluff, Bluffton.

SEA PINES BALL DROP: A festive New Year’s Eve ball drop from the top of the Harbour Town Lighthouse with two times. Featuring food, fun, entertainment and live music. 7 p.m., or 12 a.m., Harbour Town, 149 Lighthouse Road, Hilton Head Island. 843-842-1979 or

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Fresh Haiku – Missy Gentile

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POLAR BEAR SWIM: Show your adventurous side with the other “polar bears” by taking an invigorating dip in the Harbour Town Pool on a chilly winter day. Warm up after your plunge with hot chocolate and refreshments. Free. 10 a.m., Harbour Town Pool, 1 Lighthouse Lane, Hilton Head Island. 843-8421979 or ROCKIN’ ON THE RIVER: Ring in the new year at Palmetto Bluff, featuring a host of entertainers, a decadent dessert display and cash bar. Cost is $50. 9:30-12:30 p.m., Montage Palmetto Bluff, 477 Mount Pelia Road, Bluffton. 833-2320854 or ROOFTOP NEW YEARS EVE BASH: Live music and champagne all night long, plus watch the ball drop on Hilton Head Island’s largest video wall. Cost is $25 for general admission. 7 p.m.-2:30 a.m., Rooftop Bar at Poseidon, 38 Shelter Cove Lane, Hilton Head Island. 843341-3838 or

SAVE THE DATE JAN. 18 DAUFUSKIE ISLAND MARATHON: Experience Daufuskie Island during this half

marathon, full marathon and ultra mararthon race. Cost is $125 for half marathon, $145 for full marathon, $190 for ultra marathon. 6 a.m., Daufuskie Island Ferry, 10 Haig Point Court, Hilton Head Island.

JAN. 25 HILTON HEAD SNOW DAY: A family event hosted by the Island Rec Center, featuring inflatable rides, a snowfield and entertainment. Cost is $10 for children ages 2-17, free for adults. 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Shelter Cove Community Park, 39 Shelter Cove Lane, Hilton Head Island. 843-6817273 or

ONGOING SPECIAL STARS DANCE CLASS: A dance class providing movement and self-empowerment for anyone with special needs. Open to dancers with any type of special needs. Classes are free with $50 registration fee. Tuesdays, 4:30-5:15 p.m., Alliance Dance Academy, 39 Persimmon Street, Unit 404, Bluffton. 843-757-8277 or SAVANNAH PORT TOUR: The Port of Savannah, the nation’s largest port in volume, contains

over 50 piers, wharves and docks. Experience a working port from the water on this 90-minute tour. Cost is $55 for adults, $35 for children ages 3-13, free for children under two. 9 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m., 5 p.m., Savannah Harbour, Savannah. 843-686-6996 or UNCOVERING THE ROOTS OF RECONSTRUCTION: Every other Friday, meet at Mitchelville Preservation for a unique tour of two historic sites connected to the Civil War and Reconstruction eras on Hilton Head Island. Attendees will caravan in their own personal vehicles to the sites. Reservations required. Cost is $15 for adults, $10 for children ages 6-12. 9:30 a.m., Mitchelville Preservation, 539 William Hilton Pkwy, Hilton Head Island. 843689-6767, ext. 223. HILTON HEAD FARMERS MARKET: Take home fresh produce, pasture-raised chicken, freerange rabbit, pork, seafood, salsa, fresh sausage, cookies, breads, she-crab soup and much more. Shopping at the Hilton Head Farmers Market is about more than getting great food. It is also about meeting friends, strengthening community, and rebuilding the local food economy. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Tuesdays, Coastal Discovery Museum, 70 Honey Horn Drive, Hilton Head Island. 843-6896767, ext. 226, or FARMERS MARKET OF BLUFFTON: Fresh, locally grown vegetables, fruits, flowers, plants and herbs abound at the Farmers Market of Bluffton, a weekly community event where locals and tourists gather not only to buy excellent produce but also to enjoy delicious food, listen to entertainment, and relax with friends. 2-6 p.m. Thursdays, 40 Calhoun St., Bluffton. 843-415-2447. GARVIN-GARVEY HOUSE TOURS: Visit the newly restored Garvin-Garvey House for a guided tour. $5. By appointment from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays, Oyster Factory Park, 63 Wharf St., Bluffton. BIKE TOURS THROUGH HILTON HEAD HISTORY: A casual 3-mile, safe and fun bike tour through some of the island’s most captivating historic sites. See the fishing co-op where native islanders once farmed, feasted and fended off the chemical company BASF, the hallowed ground of a Gullah cemetery, an Indian Shell Enclosure, the tabby ruins located on a former plantation and visit with volunteers from the Gullah Museum of Hilton Head Island. Price ranges from $15 to $25. 10 a.m. Wednesdays, leaving from 137 Squire Pope Road, Hilton Head Island. ADULT PAINT AND PLAY: Paint and Play is an adult wine and paint night of fun entertainment December 2019 213

››Calendar Dec. 12-22

Osprey Watch

LEAN ENSEMBLE EXPLORES “EVERY BRILLIANT THING” Lean Ensemble Theater takes another giant step in its boldest season yet with a new production of the acclaimed “Every Brilliant Thing,“ written by Doug Macmillan with Jonny Donahoe. Directed by Maegan Azar, the one-man show stars Lean Ensemble member Matt Mundy. As Mundy bounds around the stage, he leads a witty and profound interactive “conversation” with the audience that both plumbs the depths and scales the heights of human experience. Join the talkback afterwards for questions and discussion with Matt Mundy and representatives from NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness. Performances are 7:30 p.m. on Dec 12-14 and Dec 19-21. Matinees are at 2 p.m. on Dec. 15 and 22. Performances are at Soundwaves, 7 Lagoon Road on Hilton Head Island. Tickets are $40. Students and Active Military $15. Group rates available. For tickets and information call 843.715.6676 or go to


for all skill levels — no experience needed. Relax, unwind and let out your inner creativity as artist Kristin Griffis helps you create your own finished piece of artwork. Thursdays, Art League Academy, 106 Cordillo Parkway, Hilton Head Island. 843-842-5738 or GUIDED TOURS OF HEYWARD HOUSE MUSEUM AND WELCOME CENTER: The museum offers guided tours of the four-room Carolina farmhouse and two outbuildings, which are filled with interesting artifacts and furnishings from the late 1800s into the 1920s. Tours last approximately 45 minutes to an hour and are offered as visitors arrive unless previously scheduled. $10; reservations are not required except for groups of 10 or more. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Mondays-Fridays and 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturdays, Heyward House Museum and Welcome Center, 70 Boundary St., Bluffton. “JAZZ BY THE SEA”: Modern and classic jazz by the Mike Barbara Trio, featuring pianist Bill Peterson. 7-9 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. Ocean Lounge, Sea Pines Beach Club, Hilton Head Island. 842-843-1888. FORT MITCHEL IN HILTON HEAD PLANTATION: Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the site contains the remains of a coastal defense battery erected in 1862 to protect Port Royal Sound by way of Skull Creek from incursions by Confederate gunboats. Costumed characters and an expert tour guide. $15 for adults; $10 for children. 10 a.m. Mondays, Fort Mitchel,

Hilton Head Plantation, 65 Skull Creek Drive, Hilton Head Island. 843-686-6560 or SOCIAL BRIDGE AND SUPERVISED PLAY: An opportunity for players to improve their game and meet new partners in a casual, relaxed environment. $10; free for Junior Bridge members. 10 a.m.-noon. Fridays. Hilton head Island Bridge Club, 95 Mathews Drive, Port Royal Plaza Center, Hilton Head Island. 551-795-6329. SARAH ANSBOURY PICKLEBALL CLINIC: Skills and game play to help improve your pickleball game. $35 per person. 6-7:30 p.m. Tuesdays. Palmetto Dunes Tennis & Pickleball Center, 6 Trent Jones Lane, Hilton Head Island. FRIDAY SOCIAL DANCING: Hilton Head Island Shag Club: Anyone who loves to dance is invited to attend — ballroom, swing, country, line, singles and out of towners are welcome. $5 per person. 6-9:30 p.m. Fridays, Dolphin Head Golf Club, 59 High Bluff Road, Hilton Head Island. 757-3755953 or OPEN MIC NIGHT: Bring something short to share, or just come to listen, dine and enjoy music by the Hilton Head Jammers. 6:30-8:30 p.m. Last Thursday of the month. Mikki’s Café, 70 Marshland Rd, Hilton Head Island.

Don’t Miss These Upcoming Events GET YOUR TICKETS NOW! Don’t miss the big bash honoring all of the 2019 winners!

Sponsored by:

Food & Drinks • Giveaways • Live Music and more! Thursday, Dec. 5th • 5:30 pm - 9:00 pm

Sonesta Resort Hilton Head Island

Sponsored by:


To purchase tickets go to

Unbeatable Local Benefits Not only is local, competitvely priced and easy to use; we have an exclusive marketing agreement with Hilton Head Monthly, Bluffton Monthly and Lowcountry Radio Group. Which we use to promote your event to your audience for no extra cost.

For more information: call Karrie at 843-949-2591

We ticket all events including: Charity Events School Fundraisers Wine Dinners Sporting Events Vendor Expos Concerts Theater





uring the holidays, it’s easy for the family cook to get caught up in the flurry of meal preparation and barely have time to relax with guests. Hiring a personal chef can solve this common dilemma for harried hosts. Lowcountry personal chefs handle all aspects of putting together memorable meals, including menu planning, shopping, food prep, setting the table, serving hors d’oeuvres and presenting each course with a description of ingredients and preparation. Chef Lynn Michelle Hicks learned to cook for families in Belgium after graduating from Johnson and Wales University in Providence, RI. After returning to the U.S., she worked for several corporations and owned her own café before moving to Hilton Head in 2000. Hicks became a personal chef a few years ago, serving visitors and residents. She’s found that most of her customers stay in high-end rental homes, especially around the holidays. “I make all of their mashed potatoes, hams, turkeys and their heirloom family recipes. I do the shopping, prep, cooking and clean-up in the home,” said Hicks, whose business name is Chef Lynn Michelle. Some of the dishes she prepares include sweet potato biscuits with honey butter; sage and thyme stuffing with fresh roasted chestnuts and maple sausage; and a cranberry applesauce that goes well with turkey and over ice cream. One of the advantages of a personal chef is their ability to customize the menu for diners with different tastes and dietary restrictions. “I’m doing a party with three different Lowcountry boils: one for a shellfish allergy, one for a no-salt diet and one regular,” she said. Personal chef Meagan Mehaffey is another Lowcountry professional with an extensive background in the food and beverage industry. She moved from Cleveland, OH, about ten years ago, and when her daughter was born, Mehaffey knew the late hours of restaurant life had to end.

December 2019 217


“She was all I needed to give me a push to start this business,” she said. Mehaffey named her business Mise en Place and became a member of the American Personal and Private Chef Association. She also has found that visitors hire her when they want to enjoy a perfect night in instead of eating out every night of their vacation (or cooking for themselves). She prioritizes using local ingredients to help support Lowcountry farms and growers, and has many repeat local and vacationing customers. Brenda Watterson, who lives with her husband and twin daughters in Sea Pines, searched online for an in-home chef to help with the celebration for a family member’s 50th birthday and found Mehaffey. The menu included bacon wrapped scallops with cherry balsamic drizzle; a tiered cheese with a variety of soft and hard cheeses, cured meats, olives and candied nuts; chicken Greco and a salted caramel apple tart for dessert.


Mehaffey included the guests’ names and birthday wishes in the printed menu. “Having a true professional handle all the details of our private dinner party so my husband and I could enjoy our guests was the best part,” she said. “It was a high-class experience.” The cost of a personal chef varies depending on the number of diners, cost of the ingredients and number of courses, but clients should expect to spend about $100 per person before tax and tip, Mehaffey said.

December 2019 219


Sweet treats




hristmas cookies are traditional in many cultures, are fun to make ahead of time and give as gifts at cookie swaps. Depending on the recipe, cookie doughs can be either pressed, rolled, molded, dropped, baked, cut into bars or deep fried. Some cookie swaps have a theme — one fun event is the Ugly Sweater Cookie Swap. Guests are encouraged to not only decorate their cookies with the tackiest, gaudiest sweater designs but to wear their ugliest, decoration-laden sweater as well, all the better with blinking lights. Hosting a cookie swap, unlike a diner party with a long to-do list, is a great way to bring together friends with much less effort. All you need to stage a casual get-together is to send out invitations, decorate a table for displaying the cookies, then prepare hot cocoa or coffee or serve wine. Practice the art of finding an easy recipe that looks like a lot of work went into it: rum balls and chocolate truffles seem like they’d require lots of baking acumen but most recipes are simple and need only a handful of ingredients. Best of all, no baking is necessary. Around the world, popular Christmas cookies include melomakarona (Greece), pizzelle (Italy), spritzgebäck (Germany and Alsace), springerle (Germany), Berner Honiglebkuchen (Switzerland), macarons (France), polvorones (Spain), speculaas (Netherlands), maslenki (Bulgaria), hojarascas (Mexico), casadinhos de doce de leite (Brazil), cocadas (South America), and Peppernuts (North America). Gingerbread cookies are especially popular shaped into little people or used to make elaborate gingerbread houses. Most importantly of all, baking cookies brings families and friends together. And who doesn’t want to leave a little plate of cookies for Rudolf and his reindeer friends to nibble on?


Merry Mini Meringues by Carrie Hirsch Makes approximately 32 mini meringues

There are two secrets to making successful meringues: egg whites won’t whip up if there is any moisture or residue at all on your equipment, so make sure everything is completely clean and dry. Also, take extra care when separating the egg yolks from the egg whites so that no yolk breaks and mixes with the egg whites – if this happens, make an omelet and start over!
 3 egg whites

Silver dragees (optional)

¾ cup sugar

Parchment paper

½ teaspoon cream of tartar

Piping bags

6 drops food coloring Preheat oven to 225°. Chill the beaters and mixing bowl for 5 minutes in the freezer. Whip egg whites on high setting until frothy. Gradually beat in sugar and cream of tartar and continue beating until stiff and shiny. Beat in food coloring. Place meringue into a large piping bag. Pipe merengue into 2” rounds onto 2 cookie sheets lined with parchment paper, about 1” apart. (Meringues don’t expand while baking like cookies) Top each with a silver dragee. Bake for 30 minutes. Turn off the oven and allow meringues to remain in the oven until cooled completely (1-2 hours). Store meringues in a cool spot in an airtight container for 2-3 weeks.

Christmas “Peekaboo” Cookies This recipe is inspired by Eastern European jam-filled cookies. Makes 12-14 cookies These cookies are fun for children to make with adult help because decorations can be placed inside the circular “Peekaboo” opening in the top layer of the cookie. Young bakers also will learn to use a rolling pin. If possible, use a standing mixer with a flat beater attachment — the best attachment for making cookie dough. A wire whisk works best for lighter jobs like whipping cream and frothing egg whites. A dough hook works best for heavier jobs like pizza and pasta doughs. 1 stick + 1 tablespoon butter 1/3 cup sugar 1 egg, beaten 1 teaspoon vanilla, lime or orange extract 2 cups all-purpose flour ½ cup of your favorite jelly Parchment or wax paper 2” round cookie cutter Decorations: gummy bears, sprinkles

Preheat oven to 350°. Using a large bowl and a standing mixer, beat butter and sugar until fluffy. Stir in egg and vanilla extract and beat until well incorporated. Add flour, then beat until the dough forms. Place a sheet of parchment paper on a flat surface. Shape half the dough into a rectangular shape and place on the parchment paper. Place another sheet of parchment paper on top of the dough. Using a rolling pin, roll out until 1/8” thick. Press cookie cutter into dough and transfer cookies to a nonstick cookie sheet. Gather up emaining scraps and roll out until all dough is used. Repeat this process with the remaining half of the dough. Cut out or press a 1” icing tip into the center of the cookie (the “peekaboo” part). Transfer this batch to a second cookie sheet. Place both cookie sheets in the freezer for 5 minutes, then bake for 8-10 minutes, avoiding browning along the edges. Remove from oven, allow to cool for 3 minutes then transfer cookies to a cooling rack. Once completely cooled, place solid cookies on a serving platter. Spread each cookie with jam. Place cookies with “peekaboo” opening on top. Sprinkle the opening with decorations, then dust with confectioners’ sugar.

December 2019 221

››Dining news

Geist Ussery

Mansion on Forsyth Park cooking school


Chef Geist Ussery is now collaborating with SERG Restaurant Group to bring his unique and creative culinary talent to the organization. Chef Ussery is an exclusive private chef, event organizer and caterer. He is a native of Bluffton with a Latin and Caribbean background, which he has embraced and extended within his profession. Chef Ussery will specialize in social and private events for the SERG Group.


Sigler’s Rotisserie and Seafood is now under the ownership of Chef Anthony Alessi, in partnership with Frank and Laura Gibson. Chef


Joe’s Ice Cream

Alessi’s wife and daughter will also oversee restaurant operations. Chef Alessi brings over 40 years of culinary experience to the table. The new menu will include the same items, plus tasty new dishes like Veal Cordon Bleu.


The Mansion on Forsyth Park is now offering cooking classes. Participants will learn new techniques, knife skills and time saving tips in the kitchen. It’s an interactive and entertaining experience, followed by a shared meal at the conclusion of each class. New chef Jason Winn teaches the classes. For more information:


Old Town Bluffton’s newest ice cream shop has traditional flavors and ice cream flavored with wine. Joe’s Ice Cream and Beverage Co., located at 15 Bruin Road in Old Town, is offering four wine-based ice cream flavors: Cherry Merlot; Peach White Zinfandel; Chocolate Cabernet; and Spice, a red mulled wine with cinnamon, nutmeg and clove. Patrons must be 21 to enjoy these flavors, which are up to 5% alcohol by volume. The new ice cream shop has an outdoor seating area and is pet-friendly.

Our Favorite

Restaurants Brought to you by Monthly, Fork & Fun and Vacation Guide

Hilton Head – North End

Overlooking Shelter Cove marina and Broad Creek, ELA’S offers the island’s best water views. Reservations recommended.

CocoNutz Sportz Bar Ga

40 Folly Field Road HHI Beach & Tennis Resort 843.842.0043

Fishcamp on Broad Creek nGa

Open to the public. Imagine your favorite sporting events shown on dual 125” high-definition screens and 18 other TV’s tuned in to every sporting event imaginable. That’s what you will find at CocoNutz. If you get hungry, try the “Island’s Best Wings,” 1st place at Wingfest 2017, craft burgers and brews, prime rib.

Fishcamp’s menu consists of seafood and American cuisine, including steak and lobster. They have an outdoor bar and open patio. Family friendly.

11 Simmons Road (Adjacent to Broad Creek Marina) 843.842.2267 |

Crazy Crab Jarvis Creek nG Hwy. 278 (near Mile Marker 1) 843.681.5021 |

A Hilton Head tradition for over 30 years, enjoy genuine service and fresh seafood. Menu feature crab clusters, local oysters, seafood “your way,” fresh local shrimp.

Gator’z Pizza G

40 Folly Field Road HHI Beach & Tennis Resort 843.842.0043

200A Museum St. (Across from Walmart) 843.342.9949 Serving a wide variety of authentic Italian cuisine, ranging from cuisine of Northern Italy to genuine crispy, thin-crust, Italian-style pizza. Casual, attractive restaurant, with large, attractive bar and a genuine brick oven (imported from Italy) for baking pizza.

Street Meet: The American Tavern nGa

Port Royal Plaza 843.842.2570 |

Street Meet specializes in homemade versions of regional American bar food. Best Wings, Fish & Chips, Homemade Soups, Salads, Vegetarian Menu, Seafood.

Be sure to stop by Gator’z Pizza and order the “Bigly” MEGA Pizza. It’s 400 square inches of pizza perfection! These delicious pizzas are available for both dine in and take out.

Healthy Habit gn

AQuick service style restaurant with a focus on chopped salads and other plant based items utilizing the freshest ingredients possible with hand crafted dressings.

Old Fort Pub G} 65 Skull Creek Drive 843.681.2386 | Dine indoors or on the patio, enjoy beautiful views of the Intracoastal Waterway. The only AAA Four Diamond Restaurant on Hilton Head. (Won 11 times!) Reservations Recommended.

Reilley’s North End Pub nGa 95 Mathews Dr. (Port Royal Plaza) 843.681.4153 |


28 Shelter Cove Ln. 843.342.5420 |

Have breakfast or lunch inside or outdoors in this bakery/ café. Enjoy crepes, omelets, breads, baguette & panini sandwiches, salads, soups, quiches & pastries. Traditional French recipes.

Island Bagel & Deli gn

S. Island Square 843.686.3353 | The island's only New York style boiled bagels made daily. Choose from 16 flavors of bagels, 12 home-made cream cheeses. For lunch: specialty hoagies, classic sandwiches & salads.

Jamaica Joe’z Beach Bar nG

76 Queens Folly Rd. (Palmetto Dunes) 843.785.4999 |

Open 7 days. Steps from the beach and a great place to kick back, snack on some pork nachos or a burger, and cool off with a frozen cocktail,cold beer or a soft drink.

Menu uses seasonal ingredients with a strong emphasis on seafood while paying homage to Alexander’s original favorites. Dinner from 5–10pm daily.

Big Jim’s BBQ, Burgers & Pizza nG 7 Trent Jones Ln. (Palmetto Dunes) 855.878.1966 | Big Jim’s offers signature Southern dishes, gourmet burgers, pizzas, soups, salads, seafood, steaks and ribs. Open daily for breakfast, lunch & dinner.

ELA’S Blu Water Grille n G

An island institution, Reilley’s has been serving up steaks, seafood, pasta & sandwiches for more than 35 years. Kids eat free Tuesdays with an adult entrée.

The French Bakery & Courtyard Café gn

Hilton Head – Mid-Island

Alexander’s Restaurant & Wine Bar G

33 Office Park Road Suite 227 843.686.5600 |


Il Carpaccio nG

1 Shelter Cove Ln. (Shelter Cove) 843-785-3030 |

Fresh catch seafood and prime cut steaks of the highest quality, artfully prepared by their team of culinary experts, compliment the extensive boutique wine selection. n LUNCH G DINNER

40 Folly Field Rd. (Mid-island) 843.842.0043 |

Jane Bistro & Bar nG 28 Shelter Cove Lane (Shelter Cove Towne Centre) 843.686.5696 | Serving classic bistro fare with Lowcountry influences. Favorites include the jumbo lump crab cakes, pecan cranberry chicken salad, crispy flounder and petit filet mignon with pommes frites. Open daily.

Old Oyster Factory Ga

101 Marshland Rd. 843.681.6040 | Panoramic marsh and water views. Specializing in fresh seafood and some of the best steaks on Hilton Head. featured in The Wall Street Journal's “Off the Beaten Track.” Wine Spectator magazine’s “Award of Excellence.”


››Dining | Favorites San Miguel’s nG 9 Harbourside Ln. (Shelter Cove Harbour) 843.842.4555 |

the signature fish and chips or their shepherd’s pie, steak & mushroom pie, lobster pot pie and bangers & mash.

Located directly on the harbour at Shelter Cove and provides good food and fun. Extensive California/Mexican menu. Try San Miguel’s Fish Tacos, fajitas and chimichangas. Lunch and dinner served daily.

86 Helmsman Way 843.842.2016 |

Santa Fe Cafe nG

807 William Hilton Parkway (Plantation Center by Palmetto Dunes) 843.785.3838 |

Carolina Crab Company nG

Boasting water views, enjoy fresh seafood at an affordable price in a family-friendly atmosphere. Offering an array of seafood; peel-n-eat shrimp, giant Po Boys, burgers, Maine lobster, & crab legs. Pet-friendly outside bar & patio.

ChowDaddy’s nG

14b Executive Park Rd. (off of Pope Ave.) 843.757.CHOW(2469) | Offering a wide variety of menu items focusing on buns, bowls, and tacos and great libations. Serving lunch & dinner daily.

Cowboy Brazilian Steakhouse G

1000 William Hilton Parkway, B-6 843.715.3565 | A unique, all-you-can eat “Churrascaria.” Enjoy a 30 item salad bar, 6 Brazilian hot dishes and a “parade” of 16 USDA Prime cuts of beef, lamb, chicken and pork carved at your table by their gauchos.

Casually elegant dining that captures the spirit of New Mexico. Signature items include Parmesan Chipotle Grouper, 24-ounce bone-in ribeye steaks, fajitas , & Painted Desert Soup.

Sea Grass Grille G

CQ’s Restaurant nG 140 Lighthouse Rd. 843.671.2779 |

807 William Hilton Parkway (Plantation Center by Palmetto Dunes) 843.785.9990 | American and Lowcountry Continental cuisine. Chef Chad brings 38 years of hands-on culinary expertise. More than 50 wines by the glass. Winner of Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence.

Captain Woody’s n G a 6 Target Rd. (off of Palmetto Bay Rd.) 843.785.2400

Fine dining, an intimate atmosphere and a bit of Hilton Head history. Signature dishes include fresh seafood, beef & game.“Bistro” menu offers smaller portions.

Up the Creek Pub & Grill nGa 18 Simmons Rd. (Broad Creek Marina) 843.681.3625 |

Enjoy “Fresh Seafood, Cold Beer & Great Happy Hour & Still A Locals Favorite For Over 30 Years!” Dine inside or outside on the patio. Serving a variety of fresh seafood, sandwiches, award winning soups and salads all at affordable prices.

26 New Orleans Rd. 843.341.2333 |

Located on Broad Creek with great marina and water views. Known for smoked wings, hush puppies, buffalo chicken dip, beer selection and the best burgers. Kids menu available. Dogs are welcome.

Genuine service and fresh seafood; a Hilton Head tradition for over 30 years! Menus feature crab clusters, local oysters, seafood “your way,” local shrimp and more. Dine in the heart of Sea Pines at Harbour Town.

Aunt Chilada’s Easy Street Café nG

69 Pope Avenue 843.785.7700 |

Big Bamboo n G a

1 N. Forest Beach Dr. (Coligny Plaza) 843.686.3443 | Where the South Pacific meets the Carolina Coast just steps from the beach. A casual hangout with a local vibe serving burgers, seafood and festive libations. Come for the food, stay for the live entertainment!

British Open Pub n G

Village at Wexford 843.686.6736 | Family friendly pub style restaurant with authentic English food with American favorites and certified Angus beef. Try 226

Perfect for steak and seafood lovers, serving cuts of only USDA Prime grade beef, their Famous Prime Rib. Excellent selection of fresh fish, seafood & pasta dishes.

Crazy Crab Harbour Town nG Sea Pines at Harbour Town 843.363.2722 |

Hilton Head – South End

Excellent Tex-Mex and American fare. Enjoy the all-youcan-eat crab legs, sizzling fajitas, & margaritas. Reservations & large parties welcome. Private dining/event area. Live entertainment (seasonally) on the covered patio.

Crane’s Tavern Steakhouse & Seafood G

Delisheeyo n G Charlie’s L’Etoile Verte G 8 New Orleans Road 843.785.9277 | Open since 1982, Charlie’s, an island favorite among locals and tourists alike, writes its menu daily based on the freshest seafood available. Dinner menu offers an array of 14 fresh fish, rack of lamb, filet mignon and more. An extensive wine list.

Catch 22 G 37 New Orleans Rd. (Orleans Plaza near Sea Pines Circle) 843.785.6261 | Catch 22 is locally owned. Dinner is served nightly from 5 p.m. Early Dining Menu from 5:00– 6:00 p.m. All of our beef is aged 28 days, U.S.D.A prime, hand selected and cut in house.

32 Palmetto Bay Road 843.785.3633 | Vegetarian. Delisheeyo owner Blake Wearren set out to create a place for people to escape for lunch. The fruit and veggie smoothies are a quick meal by themselves. Their Buddha Bowls, consisting of steamed grain and healthy toppings of your choice, is a favorite of the regulars. Provide meals that you can trust, that are real, and healthy.

Dough Boys Pizza nG 1 New Orleans Rd. 843.686.2697 | House-made crusts: traditional hand tossed, thin crust and thick Sicilian. Create-Your-Own-Chopped Salad from 40 different item choices. Specialty subs are served on Amoroso rolls.

Flatbread Grill & Bar nG

2 N. Forest Beach Dr. (Beach Market Center) 843.341.2225 | Upscale, casual dining. Enjoy Neapolitan pizza, fresh pasta, gourmet salads, burgers, wraps, flatbread sandwiches and more. Dough & sauces are freshly made.

Frosty Frog Cafe & Pizza nGa Coligny Plaza 843.686.FROG |

Dine inside or out on the large patio w/retractable roof. Enjoy daiquiris, wine, beer & a full liquor bar; menu includes burgers, crabcakes, salads, wraps, pizza, calzones, crab legs, shrimp, extensive gluten-free options & a kids menu.

Gusto Ristorante G

890 William Hilton Parkway (Fresh Market Plaza) Voted Hilton Head's Best New Restaurant. Executive chef/owner Giancarlo Balestra and his wife Nancy bring the flavors of his hometown of Rome Italy to Hilton Head. Closed Monday.

Hilton Head Diner gnGa

Hwy. 278 at Yacht Cove Dr. 843.686.2400 | One of the island’s only 24-hour restaurants. Modern diner boasting one of Hilton Head’s most extensive menus. All baking is done on the premises. Beer, wine & mixed drinks available. breakfast, lunch and dinner daily.

Hinchey’s Chicago Bar & Grill n

too. It is casual, with beach-goers invited to stop by for lunch, or for drinks or dinner. Dine inside or out. Open seven days a week serving lunch and dinner.

Hinoki Restaurant & Sushi Bar nG 37 New Orleans Rd. (Orleans Plaza) 843.785.9800 | Serving traditional Japanese dishes including grilled fish, chicken and steak, sukiyaki, noodle dishes, tempura, and daily specials, plus sushi and sashimi. More than 20 entrées. Reservations are recommended for dinner.

It’s Greek To Me nGa

11 Lagoon Rd. 843.842.4033 | Genuine Greek cuisine, from gyros to fried calamari to souvlaki to baklava for dessert. Food is prepared with authentic Greek recipes and they have the only gyro machines on the island. Greek beer and ouzo. Reservations accepted.

Kenny B’s Cajun/Creole Seafood gnG} 70-A Pope Ave. 843.785.3315 “Creole cuisine with a Lowcountry influence.” Order New Orleans traditions such as jambalaya, red beans and rice, and authentic gumbos. Kenny B’s is home of the Island’s best po’ boys and fried seafood. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, Sunday brunch.

Ga 70 Pope Avenue 843.686.5959 | Hinchey’s has much in common with a sports bar, but is very much a restaurant,

Ombra Cucina Italiana G 1000 William Hilton Parkway (Village at Wexford)

843.842.5505 | Chef Michael Cirafesi promotes the foods & wines of Italy. He prepares all pastas, homemade gnocchi, desserts and breads daily. An extensive wine list from every region in Italy. A European-style bar & lounge with a vast selection of Italian cocktails. Peanut-free. Gluten-free pasta available. Open 7 days a week from 4:30. Reservations recommended, walk-ins welcome. December 2019 227

››Dining | Favorites

Michael Anthony’s G

Phillys Cafe & Deli n 55 New Orleans Rd. 843.785.9966 |

Family owned and operated since 2002, offering upscale classic Italian fine dining featuring innovative preparations and farm fresh ingredients. Open Table rates them as one of the country's Top 50 Italian Restaurants. Dinner is served Monday - Saturday. Reservations suggested.

Locally owned and operated for more than 25 years, Phillys’ motto is “Best sandwiches on the island...Period!” Custom sandwiches with bread baked fresh daily. The pita wraps and salads are both imaginative and health-conscious.

MidiCi Italian Kitchen nGa

8 Archer Rd. (a half mile from Sea Pines Circle) 843-686-3388 |

37 New Orleans Rd. (Orleans Plaza) 843.785.6272 |

7C Greenwood Dr. (Reilley’s Plaza) 843.842.7999

MidiCi Italian Kitchen brings Italy’s original Neapolitan wood-fired pizza and authentic pasta to Reilley’s Plaza on Hilton Head Island. Taste the freshness of quality ingredients – pizza made with Italian flour in authentic wood-fired ovens. Enjoy signature appetizers, salads, and desserts made with fresh, natural and mostly non-GMO ingredients.

Red Fish nG

Red Fish specializes in beautifully prepared seafood and steaks. Diners may choose from a 1,000-plus bottle selection of wines from around the world. Private dining room for large parties. Multi-course early dining specials from 5-5:45 p.m. feature soup or salad; choice of seven entrées; and complimentary glass of chef’s choice of wine.

Nunzio Restaurant + Bar G 18 New Orleans Road 843.715.2172 |

Popular New Jersey chef Nunzio Patruno has brought his acclaimed cooking style to Hilton Head Island. Nunzio Restaurant + Bar specializes in fresh seafood and homemade pasta. Enjoy a delicious meal in the beautifully renovated 1,300-squarefoot restaurant equipped with a large bar area and two outdoor seating areas.

Nick’s Steak & Seafood G

Reilley’s Grill & Bar nGa

9 Park Lane 843.686.2920 |

7D Greenwood Dr. (Reilley’s Plaza) 843.842.4414 |

Nick’s Steak & Seafood emphasizes steaks, seafood and barbecue and offers sandwiches, salads, appetizers, soups, burgers, pasta and a children’s menu. Reservations accepted. Large parties welcome.

Reilley’s has been serving up steaks, seafood, pasta & sandwiches for more than 35 years. Lunch & dinner daily, & Sunday brunch. The bar is open late. Enjoy Mon. Night Lobster and Fri. & Sat. Prime Rib (reservations required).

Palmetto Bay Sun Rise Café gn Palmetto Bay Marina 843.686.3232 | Breakfast fare starting before the sun rises, from 6 a.m. Breakfast and lunch items are available continuously. The cafe offers to-go lunches for charter boats, the beach or any other occasion. Open seven days a week. 228

Sea Shack nG

6 Executive Park Rd. (off Pope Ave.) 843.785.2464 | Serving up one of the island’s most extensive menus of seafood & more. Voted one of "South Carolina’s best seafood spots" by Coastal Living and Southern Living. Open Mon.-Sat. for lunch & dinner.

2 Regency Pkwy. & Hwy. 278 843.341.3347

Stack’s Pancakes & More g n G

Truffles nG Sea Pines Center 843.671.6136 |

Family owned & operated, serving breakfast & lunch, 7 days. Enjoy pancakes, waffles, house-made fruit sauces, crepes, Crème Brûlée French Toast, shrimp & grits, crab benedict, shrimp omelet topped with lobster cream sauce. Gluten free items.

Fresh local seafood, Black Angus steaks, baby back ribs, homemade soups, sandwiches, and garden salads. Specialties include glazed grouper, mango salmon, crab cakes, chipotle chicken, meatloaf and fried shrimp. Daily from 11am.

Stellini G

Twisted Cork n G

15 Executive Park Rd. (near Sea Pines Circle) 843.785.7006 |

11 Palmetto Bay Road, #102 (next to Staples) 843.802.0510

Rockfish Seafood & Steaks at Bomboras

Family owned & operated since 1989! Popular Italian appetizers and entrees from NY & Northern NJ. Delicious pasta, poultry, veal, seafood, beef and lamb all expertly prepared. Gluten Free & Children’s Menu.

Open Monday through Saturday, 5-11 p.m. A local cocktail and wine bar. You can find it in Festival Center Plaza, near the Sea Pines Circle.

A unique family seafood restaurant and bar that is located right near the beach. Offering fresh and local lowcounty ingredients paired with craft beers and wines. Kids menu. Lunches to Go for the beach.

The Studio G

20 Executive Park Road 843.785.6000 |

Vine G Coligny Plaza Shopping Center 1 N Forest Beach Drive 843.686.3900

Dine while enjoying watching artists paint in the elegant studio. The menu is inspired by American and global cuisines and uses the finest regional, natural & organic ingredients. Gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan menu offerings.

From marinated octopus to field greens from nearby St. George, the offerings at this intimate bistro are a treat for all. Mediterranean cuisine with a hint of Asian fusion. Reservations. Dinner starting at 5:30 p.m.

Ga 5 Lagoon Road 843.689.2662 |

December 2019 229

››Dining | Favorites

BLUFFTON Amigos, Bluffton nG 133 Belfair Town Village 843.815.8226

Authentic Mexican taqueria, serving delicious food “inspired by Mexican cuisine from Baja, Mexico, to Santa Barbara, California.” Owner Andrew Farbman created Amigos’ famous BBQ Chicken Salad. Amigos uses the finest ingredients.

British Open Pub nGa

Sheridan Park 843.815.6736 | Pub-style restaurant featuring authentic English food. Excellent signature fish and chips, shepherd’s pie, steak and mushroom pie, and bangers and mash. Also wide selection of American appetizers and entrées. Lunch & dinner daily.

Calhoun Street Tavern nGa

9 Promenade St. 843.757.4334 | A place where fine spirits are drunk, laughs are had, and stories are told. Cold beer, classic cocktails, and familiar faces paired with a chef driven menu of southern plates and comforting lowcountry classic food.

ChowDaddy’s nG

15 Towne Dr. (Belfair Towne Village) 843.757.CHOW(2469) | Focusing on buns, bowls, and tacos and great libations. Enjoy salads, sliders, a house ground rib eye burger, or their famous smoked fried chicken. Serving lunch & dinner daily.

Cinco Mexican Grill nG

102 Buckwalter Parkway, Suite 3D

(Berkeley Place)

843.815.2233 | Authentic Mexican cuisine made from scratch using both traditional and modern recipes. Popular dishes are the Cinco Bowl, Piña Fajitas, Carnitas, Enchiladas, Chimichangas, Flautas and flan.


Corner Perk gn 843.816.5674 | A coffeehouse/brunch restaurant where city meets South. Corner Perk offers the most amazing locally roasted Coffees, Teas, Espresso drinks, Cold Brew, Frappes as well as Skillets, Omelettes, Wraps, Sandwiches, and Salads.

Delectable Desserts by Russ g }

4376 Bluffton Parkway, Suite 202 843.422.9702

Russ Gardiner's bakery offers daily specials in addition to regular favorites like cannoli, cinnamon rolls and several types of bread. Hours are 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday; 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday; and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sundays. Closed on Tuesdays.

Gourmet on Wheels/Grab and Go

61 Riverwalk Blvd., Unit E 843.970.3030 |

Gourmet on Wheels Delivery provides individually prepared healthy meals and delivers to your door weekly. Go online and choose your entrees with sides each week. Also, check out their Gourmet Grab and Go store with fresh made salads, meals, smoothies and more.

Grind Coffee Roasters

1 Sherington Drive, Suite J 843.368.3348 | Grab a cup of Grind’s specialty coffee made with beans from Columbia, Brazil, Guatemala, Honduras, Kenya and more. Other options include infused coffee barrelaged in bourbon and whiskey barrels, and coffee infused with essential oils. Come inside or take advantage of the drive-thru.

Island Bagel & Deli gn

17 Sherington Dr. 843.815.5300 | The island's only New York style boiled bagels made from scratch daily. Choose from 16 flavors of bagels, 12 home-made cream cheeses, pastries & breakfast sandwiches. For lunch: specialty hoagies, classic sandwiches & salads.

Captain Woody’s n G a 17 State of Mind St. (Calhoun Street Promenade) 843.757.6222 Enjoy “Fresh Seafood, Cold Beer & Great Happy Hour & Still A Locals Favorite For Over 30 Years!” They have dining inside and outside on the patio. A big outdoor deck bar featurs beer, wine and specialty cocktails. Captain Woody’s serves fresh seafood, great signature sandwiches, award winning soups and salads all at affordable prices.

Jack Frost

25 William Pope Center 843.705.5669 | Fresh, frozen treats from scratch. Try our flavors like cake batter and cookie dough, or our sorbets made with seasonal fruits straight from the local farmer's market. Stop by the parlor, where you can sit outside and maybe even sight our friend Jack the alligator. Planning an event or party? We're happy to bring all the sweet stuff to you! Open Monday Sunday, 1pm - 9pm.

Olive & Fig nG

1533 Fording Island Road, Suite 326 (Moss Creek Village) 843.605.4093

Olive & Fig provides guests with a unique opportunity to experience authentic Mediterranean cuisine. The menu features Lebanese and Greek dishes alongside traditional Mediterranean fare, and gluten free and vegetarian options. Open Mon-Sat Closed Sundays.

Truffles nG Belfair Towne Village 843.815.5551 | Casual cafe featuring the “freshest and finest of everything!” Fresh local seafood, Black Angus steaks, baby back ribs, homemade soups and garden salads. Covered patio. Lunch, dinner daily. Full cocktail bar. Happy hour from 4-6. December 2019 231

››Last Call

What Makes Us Hopeful for 2020


eeling drained these days is easy. Despite a robust economy, we subliminally know there are bigger challenges that need solving and that we need to find the true American spirit again to focus our energy on positive outcomes. To this end, we asked our Last Call contributors to give us their personal takes on optimism.


By Marc Frey All year I was looking for a ray of light, something that would lift my heart and spirit. And just when I least expected, it unfolded in front of my eyes. It was a full moon night, the occasion “An Evening of the Arts,” the yearly fundraiser for the Island School Council for the Arts. When Olivia Waters took the stage and started speaking, I was mesmerized. She told us about her participation in the “Memory Project” that enlists American high school students to draw portraits of refugee children based on a photo and a few lines of description. It made me realize that a single person can shine a light of hope: Ben Shumaker, the founder of the project, has delivered more than 160,000 portraits to children in 49 countries. The videos showing the kids living in refugee camps receiving the portraits is heartwarming and it connects students around the world in a very tangible way. You can read more about Olivia’s award-winning portrait in the January issue of Monthly. By Carol Weir One thing that gives me hope is the decisive result of last month’s bond referendum to raise $344 million for projects to improve school safety and facilities and address growing enrollment. As a former teacher and parent of two students in public schools, this is close to my heart. It’s also the first time Beaufort County voters approved a school district referendum


since 2008 and is reason for optimism on several fronts. First, voters are willing to trust our elected and appointed school board officials again with the new leadership in place. Second, we are feeling positive about our economic future. The financial crisis of 2008 finally feels like a long time ago and we’re not afraid to pay a little bit more in taxes to help schools, teachers and students. Finally, because every precinct south of the Broad River approved the referendum, we can finally put to rest the accusation that our neighbors in Sun City Hilton Head don’t care about kids. They do. The referendum showed that we’re all in this together. By Marco Frey Though I grew up in the Lowcountry, I moved to New York City five years ago, as enthusiastic as I was naive to pursue a calling for music. As the years went by and I struggled to make it in this town, my passion for the city dwindled and I could see myself becoming that jaded, world-weary stereotype you see reading tabloid newspapers on the subway, wearing slacks that seemed to be greyed by years of pollution. But hard work, support from friends and family, and a few crucial good omens have always renewed my outlook. Most recently, I was asked to grace the stage with Wyclef Jean during AdWeek. Whenever I remind myself to look up during my commute, I see the crazy tapestry of humanity. I see homeless men chatting with tourists, I see regular New Yorkers helping mothers carry carriages down the subway steps, I see children eagerly digesting books. Just today, an elderly busker entered the train car, singing “A Change is Gonna Come.” If he can muster the strength to sing us a song of perseverance, while clutching a walker, it’s easier to believe there is hope for humanity.

Profile for Hilton Head Monthly

Bluffton Monthly December 2019  

Being the voice of the community takes great effort, but we love what we do because of the passionate feedback we get from our readers and t...

Bluffton Monthly December 2019  

Being the voice of the community takes great effort, but we love what we do because of the passionate feedback we get from our readers and t...