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AUGUST 2020

T H E

Family

OXFO R D

I S S U E

THE BAKERS CELEBR ATE REMISSION , OXFORD COMMUNIT Y G ARDEN G ROWS , MOTHE R- DAU G HTE R PA INTE RS & SWE E T SUM ME R TRE AT S


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I N

T H I S

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DEPA RTMENT S

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EVENTS:

OXFORD

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Letter From the Publisher

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Oxford Community Market

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Digital Details

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Foster Grandparent Event

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Calendar

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Juneteenth Celebration

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Shoutouts

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Tasting at The Sipp

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Greek Life by the Numbers

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Storybook Art Camp

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Recipes: Cold Cucumber Soup

EVENTS:

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Out & About

72

Good Neighbor: Arielle Hudson

NORTHEAST

62

Frozen

64

Tupelo Farmers’ Depot

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Skip Gleason Golf Tournament


F E AT U R E S

44

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FE ATURES 24 “Born To Be Onstage”

An Oxford youngster celebrates remission and the end of chemo onstage with her musical idol.

30 Chill Out

Cold, sweet treats offer blessed relief from long, hot summers.

38 Painters With Plans

A northeast Mississippi mother and daughter share a love for art.

44 Companion Gardening

Now entering its second decade, Oxford’s only community garden is growing up.

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L E T T E R from the P U B L I S H E R In the fall of 1998, I was struggling in my Spanish class. My professor suggested tutoring, so off I went on a cold, dark Tuesday evening to the home of a lady named Ann O’Dell. Each semester for two years, I’d arrive at her home every Tuesday at 5:30 p.m., and, for an hour, she would teach — and I would learn — about the Spanish language. One night, our discussion went beyond the borders of Spain. As the clock moved beyond 6:30 p.m., Ann O’Dell offered me a bowl of soup, a salad, some crackers and a wonderful conversation. That gesture began a lifelong friendship, which, to this day, feels more like family. As we prepared this issue, I’ve reflected on what it means to be part of a “family.” My

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biological family is small. I often laugh and say I could have a family reunion in a shoe box. But through the years, friends from far and wide have become like family. Family is often much more than a genetic link among people. For me, family is a kinship between myself and those I love, or those with whom I share kindness and compassion. This month, these are the stories we have told. Some are about genetic relationships, and some are not; but all are stories of human connection. Dot Courson and Susan Patton are artists. They are also mother and daughter. Read how each found her path to painting on page 38. Shortly after Lily Baker celebrated her third birthday in 2017, she was diagnosed with leukemia. Three years

@INVITATIONOXFORD @INVITATIONM AGA ZINE

INVITATION | AUGUS T 2020

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later, the precocious 6-year-old and her parents are celebrating remission. Read about the Oxford family on page 24. On page 22, you’ll find the soup recipe Ann O’Dell and I shared that long-ago Tuesday evening. (It’s one we still enjoy together several times a year.) Now, nearly 25 years after meeting for tutoring and sharing a bowl of soup, I can tell you the lessons and laughs shared with Ann O’Dell will warm my heart forever. Thank you for sharing a part of your time with us.

RACHEL M. WEST, PUBLISHER

@INVOXFORD @INVMAGA ZINE


PUBLISHERS Phil and Rachel West

EDITORIAL

EDITORIAL DIRECTOR Emily Welly EXECUTIVE EDITOR Leslie Criss OPERATIONS DIRECTOR Mary Moreton CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Eileen Bailey Sarah Ligon M. Scott Morris COPY EDITOR Ashley Arthur EDITORIAL ASSISTANT Abbey Edmonson

OFFICE

BUSINESS MANAGER Hollie Hilliard DISTRIBUTION Donald Courtney Brian Hilliard MAIN OFFICE 662-234-4008

ART

CREATIVE DIRECTOR Holly Vollor STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Joe Worthem CONTRIBUTING ILLUSTRATOR Sarah McCullen CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Jessica Richardson Lisa Roberts Megan Wolf Whitney Worsham

ADVERTISING

ADVERTISING CONSULTANTS Alise M. Emerson Leigh Lowery Lynn McElreath Moni Simpson Whitney Worsham Anna Zemek ADVERTISING DESIGNER Becca Pepper ADVERTISING INFORMATION ads@invitationoxford.com

To subscribe to one year (10 issues) of Invitation Oxford or to buy an announcement, visit invitationoxford.com. To subscribe to one year (10 issues) of Invitation or to buy an announcement, visit invitationmag.com. To request a photographer at your event, email Mary at mary.invitation@gmail.com. Invitation Magazines respects the many diverse individuals and organizations that make up north Mississippi and strives to be inclusive and representative of all members of our community.

PLEASE RECYCLE THIS MAGAZINE

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D I G I T A L details E XC LU S I V E LY O N L I N E AT I N V I TAT I O N OX F O R D.C O M A N D I N V I TAT I O N M AG .C O M

H e re C o me s t he Br id a l I s s ue

social S N A P S

C e nt e r S t a ge C e le b rat io n

We love being tagged in your photos!

Thank you to readers and followers for participating in our #MOBmondays and #weddingwednesday giveaways on social media in July! We are excited to publish our annual bridal magazine this October. To purchase an announcement for publication in that issue, visit invitationoxford.com or invitationmag.com.

Last October, 6-year-old Lily Baker was invited to perform onstage with Christian music star Lauren Daigle to celebrate the end of her chemo treatments. Read all about Lily’s experience on page 24, and visit invitationoxford.com or invitationmag.com to see the video of her live performance.

I’d imagine my facial expression will be somewhere along these lines the day I finally get a band. L O C A T I O N : Oxford U S E R N A M E : @molly_mcfar

L i s t e n O n l i ne : ‘ S out h of Fi ne ’ Po d c a s t “South of Fine,” which is dedicated to breaking the stigma surrounding mental health in the South. Podcast host Rhes Low is also director of strategy for Red Window Communications. “We wanted to focus particularly on the South, where rates of untreated mental illness tend to be higher, yet access to care is extremely limited,” Low said. “By having an open, honest conversation about mental health, we hope to reduce the stigma surrounding mental health and seeking treatment.”

More than 43 million people in the United States will experience mental illness in a given year. With this in mind, Right Track Medical Group and Red Window Communications launched a new podcast,

The semi-monthly podcast invites healthcare professionals to talk about an array of issues related to mental health in an open discussion format. Find recent episodes at righttrackmedical.com/southoffine. To learn more or pose questions anonymously for the podcast, email southoffine@righttrackmedical.com.

CALENDAR AND EVENTS

Today we are throwing it back to this stunning home which was completed in 2018... L O C A T I O N : Tupelo U S E R N A M E : @prairiesouthdesign

Have an exciting event coming up? Visit our website and share the details on our online community calendar. There’s a chance photos from your event will be featured in an upcoming magazine! FOLLOW US

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We are opening a new business... a DOUGHNUT SHOP!! High Rise Doughnuts will be located in the coffee side of the Creamery... L O C A T I O N : Oxford U S E R N A M E : @theoxfordcreamery

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C O M M U N I T Y AUGUST 2020

Corinth Pickin’ on the Square

RELIT! 2020: Bring. Your. Brave.

T H U R S D AY S I N A U G U S T

AUGUST 22

Bring a chair, and gather around the Courthouse for some old-time jam sessions. Thursdays, 7 p.m. Search “Corinth Pickin’ on the Square” on Facebook for weekly updates and more information.

Attend the third annual RELIT! conference, but online. The event will be hosted by Dr. Jody Carrington and other talented keynote speakers with the theme being “Bring. Your. Brave.” Dr. Carrington describes this year’s theme as “doing something, with your whole heart, when you can’t predict the outcome.” The event will feature live lectures from several qualified speakers. Buy tickets and see more details online.

Art-er Limits: Oxford Fringe Festival A U G U S T 6 -8

The seventh annual Art-er Limits: Oxford Fringe Festival kicks off Aug. 6 with the “Iron Bartender.” The gathering will be at 7 p.m. at the Powerhouse Community Arts Center. The schedule for the rest of the weekend’s events will be posted online.

eventbrite.com

oxfordarts.com

Tupelo Farmers’ Depot S AT U R D AY S I N A U G U S T

Fresh produce and baked goods available from north Mississippi vendors. Saturdays, 6 a.m.-noon, or until sold out. 415 S. Spring St. tupelomainstreet.com

Rose on a Saturday at The Sipp AUGUST 22

Bikes, Blues & Bayous AUGUST 1

Head down to Greenwood to participate in the 13th annual Bikes, Blues & Bayous. Mississippi’s largest bike ride takes off at 7 a.m. Read about the extra precautions being taken this year on the event’s Facebook page, and then register online. raceroster.com

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Destination Oxford Cruise & Car Show AUGUST 8

The annual Destination Oxford Cruise & Car Show will feature a socially distanced walk around the Square with friends and family as attendees view cars from near and far. For details, search “Destination Oxford Cruise & Car Show” on Facebook.

The Sipp on South Lamar invites you to enjoy a tasting of their favorite rose wines. The event will take place Aug. 22 from 4:30-5:30 p.m. The kitchen will also be pairing the roses with other refreshments. Tickets, $25, can be purchased online. eventbrite.com

Ole Miss classes begin A U G U S T 24


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S H O U T O U T S For the rest of the calendar year, art lovers will finally have the opportunity to feast their eyes on the much-anticipated “Van Gogh, Monet, Degas and Their Times” exhibit at the Mississippi Museum of Art in Jackson. MMA closed temporarily due to the COVID-19 pandemic but is now open and is offering free admission to the exhibit for first responders and essential workers. The new exhibition will be on display through Jan. 10, 2021, said Betsy Bradley, director of the museum. “Our friends at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts are as committed as we are to you having as much time with this exhibition as you need to feel safe, relaxed and ready to be at the museum with these important purveyors of wonder,” she said. With the ongoing COVID-19 concern, the health of museum visitors will remain a top priority, with the museum applying

COURTESY MISSISSIPPI MUSEUM OF ART

Va n G o g h , Mo ne t a nd D e g a s at t he M i s s i s s i p p i Mu s e u m of A r t

protocols for cleanliness, sanitization and safety. MMA will require advance timedticketing, social distancing and masks so visitors can enjoy the exhibit worry-free. The special exhibition will feature 74 masterworks by famous 19th- and 20th-

century French artists, including Edgar Degas, Eugene Delacroix, Edouard Manet, Claude Monet, Berthe Morisot, Pablo Picasso, Henri Rousseau, and Vincent van Gogh. The MMA is the final venue for this traveling exhibition before the collection is reinstalled in Virginia in January 2021. While entrance to the museum is free, the “Van Gogh, Monet, Degas and Their Times” exhibit has an admission charge of $15 per person; $13 for seniors and groups of 10 or more; $10 for college students. Admission is free for museum members, children 5 and under, and K-12 students on Tuesdays and Thursdays thanks to Feild Cooperative Associations Inc., and BlueCross BlueShield of Mississippi. Hours are 11 a.m.-7 p.m. TuesdayThursday; 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday-Sunday; and for visitors who are over the age of 65, 10-11 a.m. Tuesday-Thursday.

Pa l me r Ho me C e le b rat e s 125 ye a r s Palmer Home for Children, a faith-based organization in Hernando that provides a family and community to children in need regardless of race, gender or background, is celebrating 125 years of service. “Due to the COVID-19 crisis, the services we provide are more critical now than they’ve ever been,” says president and CEO Drake Bassett. “Under normal circumstances, children who are victims of maltreatment have school or summer activities as an escape. We’re seeing a nationwide increase in child abuse and neglect cases as a result of more time spent in unsafe home environments. These children need our help.” Originally founded in Columbus, Mississippi, in 1895, Palmer Home and the services it offers have expanded over

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the years. In addition to the traditional Campus Care, a residential program that pairs children with Christ-centered families in a safe environment, services now include Foster Care, where children live with Palmer Home certified families; Family Care, which offers support for the children of mothers in prison during their sentence and works toward reunification after release; and Transitional Care, a program that provides guidance for young adults ages 18-24 as they navigate life skills. In 2019, the ministry served 220 children. All funds donated in celebration of their 125th anniversary will go directly towards covering operational expenses, such as food, housing, education and counseling. To contribute to fundraising efforts, visit palmerhome.org/donate.


SHOUTOUTS

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RIDGELAND TOURISM COMMISSION

E x plo re t he Nat c he z Tra c e fo r S u m me r Fu n

Summertime offers the best opportunity to get out and explore nature, and there is no better place to do that than the Natchez Trace. Initially used as a well-traveled trail between Nashville, Tennessee, and Natchez, Mississippi, this stretch of road is flush with historical markers, scenic views and recreational activities. The Trace was established as a unit of the National Park System in 1938, and it was officially completed in 2005. The parkway is 444 miles of scenic byway through Mississippi, Alabama and Tennessee. The road is ample with historical and beautiful pit stops, many of which can be found in northeast Mississippi. Of the multiple cultural sites along the road, several ancient mounds built by Native Americans still stand. Pharr Mounds, considered the largest and most important archaeological site in north Mississippi, is at mile marker 286.7. Bear Creek Mound in Tishomingo is at mile marker 308.8. Tishomingo State Park, which offers camping, picnicking, hiking, canoeing and fishing, is located at mile marker 304. The Natchez Trace Parkway Visitor Center at mile marker 266 is open every day from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. AUGUS T 2020 | INVITATION

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N UM BE R S

A 170-YEAR-OLD INSTITUTION, THE GREEK SYSTEM AT THE UNIVERSIT Y OF MISSISSIPPI IS GEARING UP FOR AN E A R L I E R-T H A N-U S UA L R E C R U I TM E N T, A P R O C E S S H I S TO R I C A L LY K N OW N A S R U S H. T H E S E N U M B E R S R E F L E C T T H E B I G I M PAC T T H I S C O M M U N I T Y M A K E S , N OT O N LY O N I T S M E M B E R S B U T A L S O O N T H E E N T I R E C A M P U S .

IN 2019, OLE MISS FRATERNITIES

THE GREEK SYSTEM BEGAN IN

AND SORORITIES GAVE A TOTAL OF

1850

$1.3 MILLION

OLE MISS

AT

1,200 1,300

10 18

THERE ARE

ACTIVE

SORORITIES AND

TO LOCAL AND NATIONAL

ACTIVE

FR AT E R N I T I E S

CHARITIES.

AT OLE MISS.

BETWEEN

AND

FEMALE STUDENTS ARE EXPECTED TO GO THROUGH

SINCE

PA N H E L L E N I C

6,045

1995,

RECRUITMENT THIS YEAR.

SORORITY HOUSES SERVE AN AVERAGE OF

GREEK RECRUITMENT HAS TAKEN PLACE MID-SEMESTER. IN

EACH WEEK.

2020, IT WILL

AN AVERAGE OF

120 125 TO

WOMEN ARE IN EACH SORORITY

PLEDGE CL ASS WITH

403

AC TIVE MEMBERS TOTAL IN EACH HOUSE.

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MEALS

FOR THE PAST SPRING SEMESTER,

OCCUR DURING

THE A V E R A G E

THE FIRST WEEK O F FA L L C L A S S E S

41%

G PA

OF ALL

PANHELLENIC STUDENTS WAS

3.54

COMPARED TO THE AVERAGE OF OF

OLE MISS STUDENTS ARE IN FRATERNITIES AND SORORITIES.

ALL NON-PANHELLENIC STUDENTS, WHICH WAS

3.33


GREEK NUMBERS

continued

THIS YEAR, DURING PANHELLENIC RECRUITMENT, POTENTIAL NEW MEMBERS WILL WATCH VIDEOS ON ALL 10 CHAPTERS AND ATTEND UP TO

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PA R T I E S OVER THE COURSE OF

3

D AY S

THE TOTAL

S Q UA R E FO OTAG E OF THE NEW KAPPA HOUSE IS

33,393 AND THE NEW

KAPPA DELTA HOUSE IS

46,000 SORORITY AND FRATERNITY MEMBERS PERFORMED MORE THAN

73,000 HOURS

OF COMMUNITY SERVICE IN 2019 ALONE. AUGUS T 2020 | INVITATION

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SOUP

F O R A R E F R E S H I N G A N D L I G H T L U N C H , T R Y T H I S S I M P L E S U M M E R T I M E S O U P. RECIPE CONTRIBUTED BY RACHEL WEST

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othing says “summertime” better than vegetables fresh from a garden. And there is no vineripened, homegrown veggie that’s quite as cool as a cucumber. Cukes belong to the same botanical family as melons and squash, and they are great for pickling or for inclusion in salads. For a slightly different lunch treat on a hot summer day, there’s Cold Cucumber Soup. Invitation Magazines publisher Rachel West has been making this recipe for 20 years. She likes to pair it with bright red tomatoes for a tasty, colorful and healthy meal.

Cold

CUCUMBER SOUP 2 cups peeled, partially seeded, diced cucumbers 1 teaspoon salt ¼ teaspoon pepper ¼ cup chopped walnuts 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 clove garlic, minced, or 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill 1-1 ½ cups plain Greek yogurt or 1 cup sour cream ½ cup chicken broth Put all ingredients in blender, and pulse until soup reaches desired consistency. (Some texture is preferred.) Garnish with cucumber slices and dill, and serve. Makes 3 cups (about 2 servings).

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PHOTOGRAPHED BY JOE WORTHEM


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‘Born to Be Onstage’

AN OXFORD YOUNGSTER CELEBRATES REMISSION AND THE END OF CHEMO ONSTAGE WITH HER MUSICAL IDOL. WRITTEN BY LESLIE CRISS PHOTOGRAPHED BY JOE WORTHEM

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t first glance, Lily Ann Baker may seem like plenty of other 6-year-old girls. She’s the owner of an endearing grin, and she is temporarily gap-toothed thanks to the loss of a few baby teeth. Her little laugh lights up a room — or a computer monitor during a Zoom interview. And her big brown eyes sparkle when she gives a moment of thought to her interviewer’s questions. She’s a girl of discerning tastes. Her favorite colors are pink, purple and teal. She’s quite fond of mini corndogs, though she said she knows they’re not the healthiest of edibles. She has a penchant for pizza, but prefers square to round and plain cheese to loaded.

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“But I will eat pepperoni,” she said. She has a cat named Rainbow Cupcake, and, whenever it’s safe for schools to reopen, she’ll enter first grade at Lafayette Elementary School. Until then, she’s quite content jumping on her trampoline, watching shows on her iPad and playing on her backyard play set. Lily loves music and could see herself spending life on a stage, singing her heart out. Sure, it’s a bit early for her to declare her life’s profession, but she admits she’d also like to be a spy and work for the CIA. “I’ve been wanting to be a spy for years,” she said. “It’s just something I’ve always been interested in.” Lily has a keen awareness of something with which no child ought to be familiar — acute lymphocytic leukemia. But happily, she’s also recently become acquainted with the word remission. Continued on page 26


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Continued from page 24

The Diagnosis Nichole and Lee Baker received the terrible diagnosis for their brown-eyed girl March 14, 2017, a month after Lily’s third birthday. The family’s first stay at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital was two months. Later, Lily spent part time in Memphis and part time at home in Oxford, and for two and a half years, she and her mom made the trip to St. Jude every Thursday. Despite suffering side effects of chemotherapy, Lily cultivated colossal courage that continued to serve her well throughout her battle with cancer. Of course, Lily lost her hair, but her mom reminds her of how cute she was when she was bald. These days, her long, curly blonde hair belies her former baldness. “There were times she’d throw up every day,” REMEMBER Nichole said. “She had mouth ulcers; a blood clot in WHEN her leg put her in the ICU, and she almost died; she had CHIPPY WAS shingles and meningitis. SWINGING ON “The chemo had to be stopped to allow doctors to MY IV POLE? treat other issues. It was terrifying.” — Lily Baker Lily, listening to her mother share painful memories, interrupts with her own story to share. “Remember when Chippy was swinging on my IV pole?” she said. Chippy is Lily’s Elf on the Shelf and visited Lily during a Christmas spent in isolation. “I’m so glad to learn this is what she remembers of a near-death experience,” her mother said with relief.

No More Chemo During their Thursday trips to St. Jude, mother and daughter often listened to music by Lauren Daigle, a favorite of Lily’s. As the countdown to her daughter’s final chemotherapy treatment continued, Nichole wanted to find something special to do in Memphis on such an important occasion. “In my search for a special surprise, I found that Lauren Daigle was going to be in concert that day in Southaven,” Nichole said. “I knew that was it — that was going to be the surprise for Lily. I got online to get tickets, but ended up waiting.” Days later, Nichole was in New York City on a girls’ trip with a friend and several others she’d just met. “At one point, I found myself telling these women I hardly knew about Lily and how I wanted to surprise her with this concert on her final day of chemo,” she said. “One of them said, ‘Don’t buy those tickets yet.’ She took out her phone and texted her uncle who knows someone in the music business who worked with Lauren Daigle.” On Oct. 10, 2019, dressed in matching T-shirts emblazoned on the

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front with “Straight Outta Chemo,” the Baker family showed up at the Landers Center in Southaven. Not only concert tickets awaited them but also an invitation to a meet-and-greet with Daigle before the show. “First she met with a father and daughter, then they left and it was just me, Lee and Lily,” Nichole said. “Lauren and Lily talked and laughed and sang. They had the best time. When Lauren finally had to go on stage, she went one direction and we went another. Lily turned around and yelled, ‘You rock, Lauren Daigle. You got this.’” About four songs into the concert, someone from Daigle’s staff tapped Nichole on the shoulder and asked what she’d think about Lily going up on stage. For Lily, there was no hesitation. “My mind was blown,” she said. “I was born to be onstage.” Standing next to one of her musical idols, Lily MY MIND WAS was celebrated for her courage and the culmination of BLOWN. chemotherapy. She also sang along on “Dry Bones,” her I WAS BORN favorite Daigle song. TO BE “She has more heart than the rest of us in that one ONSTAGE. little body,” said Daigle to her audience. “She is made of — Lily Baker grit.” Reflecting on that life-affirming day last October, Nichole still cries. “She almost died multiple times,” she said of her daughter. “I couldn’t think of anything big enough or grand enough to do to celebrate her last day of chemo. But meeting Lauren Daigle, getting applause and a standing ovation from thousands — this is what she deserved. “After the diagnosis, we were on edge for three years, not knowing what the next day would hold. We just had to learn to trust in God and go day by day. Now I feel we can finally breathe.” Visit invitationoxford.com or invitationmag.com to see Lily Baker onstage with Lauren Daigle.

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Chill oUt COLD, SWEET TREATS OFFER BLESSED RELIEF FROM LONG, HOT SUMMERS. WRITTEN BY EILEEN BAILEY ILLUSTRATED BY SAR AH McCULLEN

August in Mississippi is different from July. As to heat, it is not a question of degree but of kind. July heat is furious, but in August the heat has killed even itself and lies dead over us. — writer Elizabeth Spencer

S

ummer in the South is unlike any other beast there is. It is formidable and unforgiving, sticky and sultry, relentless and ravaging. Yet, at the same time, it comes as no surprise. It is an expected three- to four-month guest tolerated by most of us while warmly welcomed by others. Thankfully, there are ways to beat the summer heat, including enjoying sweet and delicious treats served up cold. To help in your search for such, here are some suggestions.

Magnolia Creamery TUPELO

The shaved ice from Magnolia Creamery is more than a quick respite from the Mississippi summer heat. It is the foundation for a memory, something children and adults alike can remember years from now. Magen Bynum of New Albany has been a vital part of the northeast Mississippi community through her business, Magnolia Soap and Bath Company, which has five locations and is expanding to include five more. While the soap company is important, Bynum felt there was something missing. In the spring she began to think about starting a business that included something else she loved — shaved ice. Her selection of shaved ice is expansive and includes fun flavors such as Shark Attack, a blue concoction topped with gummy sharks, and Cookie Monster, chocolate-flavored shaved ice decorated

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with tiny chocolate chip cookies. Children have been flocking to the converted pink-and-white Shasta camper on Market Center Road, in the parking lot near Old Navy in Tupelo just off North Gloster. Bynum said since they opened three weeks ago it has been “crazy busy.” One fan is Anna Umfress, 10, of Mantachie. Anna and other family members were treated to the cool, sweet treats by her aunt. She chose the Cookie Monster shaved ice. “It is really good,” she said. Bynum, 33, said there are many shaved ice and snow cone businesses in northeast Mississippi but she wanted to do something different. Enter specialty ice-cream treats with unique names. In addition to Cookie Monster and Shark Attack, other flavors include Shaggy Shake, Mermaid and Reese’s Lover. Bynum said she had seen similar specialty treats along the Gulf Coast and wanted to add her own twist, such as one with a blueberry doughnut on top. About two months before Magnolia Creamery opened, Bynum started an Instagram page. Now their stories and photos feature many of the cooling treats they offer. The popularity of the business, combined with a supportive customer base, has Bynum starting the renovation of three more campers to be operational in other parts of northeast Mississippi. One will be in Oxford; one will be in Southaven. The third location has not yet been determined. “This has been a true blessing,” she said. “This has exceeded all of our expectations. We wanted to create something that would provide customers with memories and experiences they will remember.” For hours and shaved ice flavors, check out Magnolia Creamery on Facebook and @magnoliacreamery1 on Instagram. Continued on page 32


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Continued from page 30

Oxsicles OXFORD

PoPsy TUPELO

Cool treats made with fresh local fruits and vegetables have been drawing crowds to PoPsy in Tupelo for years. PoPsy was founded by Chance Beck. Today, the North Spring Street business is owned by Missy Coleman, a Kentucky native who moved to Tupelo 10 years ago. Coleman had been a customer at PoPsy for years. “I was obsessed,” she said. “I would buy them by the bag and hide them in the freezer for the kids.” At first she wanted to partner with Beck, but the chance to purchase PoPsy presented itself two years ago. Coleman continued to serve the popular fruit creations, many made from fruits and vegetables grown locally. Those favorites include strawberry, strawberry-lemonade, birthday cake, cookies and cream, and Key lime pie. Coleman decided to add her own touches to provide additional refreshing treats. So smoothies and acai bowls were added. These items also use fresh ingredients. They are so popular that Coleman said people buy them in bulk and freeze them at home. Amanda Stewart, manager for PoPsy, said many customers love the various fresh fruits used in the bowls. Early in the summer, she said, they were using fresh peaches from Cherry Creek Orchard. One customer comes in once a day to order the bowls and loves the peach. In addition to sweet and cooling treats, PoPsy also offers wraps for lunch and homemade soups in the cooler months. Additional flavors for the ice pops are added based on what produce is currently in season. In addition to the store front, Coleman said they still provide two mobile carts and even have PoPsy Yeti coolers for parties and other events. For more information about PoPsy, call 662-269-2641 or check out their Facebook page and @popsypopsicles on Instagram.

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Oxsicles, an Oxford purveyor of ice-cold, healthy treats made to sooth a sweet tooth without added sugars, is now under the ownership of Elizabeth Anderson Speed. Speed is no stranger to Oxsicles. In past years, she helped founder Lauren Klimetz sell the treats at farmers markets during the summer. Klimetz first created Oxsicles four years ago while on a mission to find a natural and healthier ice pop alternative for her children; her pursuit developed into a business. Speed, who took ownership of the business June 29, was drawn to the idea of Oxsicles by the treats’ wholesome ingredients. They are made without food coloring, preservatives or additives of any kind. There are no processed sugars, soy, dairy or gluten. “There is nothing artificial; it’s all natural,” she said. “And it’s still a beautiful product, it tastes great, and it’s good for you. I really appreciate that.” There’s no brick-and-mortar storefront for Oxsicles, but the sweet treats can be found in freezers at Chicory Market and The Lily Pad in Oxford; Pizza Grocery in Corinth; Mary Margaret’s Bakery in New Albany; and The Trendy House in Houston. Oxsicles can be found at local farmers markets and public events, and you can hire the cart to be brought to your private function. As a special treat during the time of social distancing, Speed has been offering — for a few hours at a time — neighborhood pop-ups, where residents can stop by for an Oxsicle. Speed’s two boys are longtime fans of Oxsicles and, like most folks, they have their personal favorites. Ten-year-old Andy likes the Chocolate, Peanut, Cherry (imagine a chocolate-covered cherry dipped in peanuts), while his 13-year-old brother, Jack, likes Blue Grape, but also likes to try some of the more unusual offerings, said their mother, who prefers Creamy Peach. Strawberry remains a popular flavor. It’s simple really, strawberries, lemon and local honey. Chocolate is also popular, though it is anything but simple: cacao, avocados, vanilla bean, agave, coconut sugar, coconut oil, coconut milk. Klimetz is quite sure Speed will have continued success. “I know the new owner of Oxsicles will take this wonderful company that I love to new heights,” she said. To request an Oxsicle pop-up in your neighborhood, place orders and learn more about the wholesome frozen treats, search “Oxsicles” on Facebook, follow @oxsicles on Instagram and visit oxsicles.com. Or, contact Speed at 662-801-0753 or oxsiclespops@gmail.com.


Sno Biz

Summer Tyme Sno

For 25 years, Sno Biz in Oxford has been serving up shaved ice treats to customers. The curbside business, located at 1131 North Lamar, started as a way for John Sherman to combat the summer downtime as an educator and coach. Sherman said he saw a “for sale” sign pop up in the window in 1995, and after many phone calls, he became the proud owner. Sherman said his business has something for everyone with the variety of items they offer. The Greenville native said they started out with shaved ice. The No. 1 flavor is a homemade ice cream flavor, he said. “It tastes just like the ice cream you get out of the ice cream machines you use in the summer,” he said. “You can’t tell a difference.” The second most popular flavor is wedding cake, Sherman said. For the younger crowd, blue raspberry is a big hit. In addition to shaved ice, Sherman said they offer Blue Bell ice cream, milkshakes and malts, sundaes, Coke and root beer floats and blended iced-coffee concoctions. All will provide a much-needed cool down in the Mississippi heat. And for those in search of more heat, Sherman offers Delta tamales. With COVID-19, this has not been a normal year. Sherman said Sno Biz normally opens in mid-March, but he waited until mid-April to follow shelterin-place guidelines. He closed the picnic tables, and people are able to practice social distancing in line in front of the business. “I told the mayor my business wasn’t physically essential but we were mentally essential for our customers,” he said. Sno Biz is open seven days a week from 1 to 7 p.m. Follow them @SnoBizoxford on Facebook, or call in orders to 662-832-8889.

Angela Gilliam of Corinth said her shaved ice creations don’t taste like others. Gilliam, who has owned the business since 2005, puts her own spin on her creations, from making the flavors to making the shaved ice itself. Located at 1206 S. Cash St., the lime green brick-and-mortar business has a walk-up window and a drive-thru. Summer Tyme Sno is Gilliam’s second shaved ice business. The first she purchased was in Tennessee shortly after she graduated high school in 1999. Since opening her shaved ice business, Gilliam has started to see different generations of families coming back, and her customer base ranges across several states. “I have customers who come from Memphis, Tupelo and Florence,” she said. “Some customers are so faithful that you know what they want when they pull up.” The top seller at Summer Tyme is called Silver Fox, which tastes like a vanilla snow cream. Customers, she said, take this flavor “very seriously, and they love it.” Other best sellers include strawberry cheesecake, wedding cake, grape, strawberry, Tiger’s Blood and watermelon. For more information and choices, search “Summer Tyme Sno-Corinth limegreen building” on Facebook and check out their page.

OXFORD

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Dairy Kream TUPELO

Dairy Kream, a Tupelo staple, has been open and providing sweet, cool treats to generations of residents. Amanda Malone, manager of the drive-up, said she has pictures of herself sitting at the picnic tables eating ice cream when she was about 3 or 4 years old. “We have provided memories for generations of families,” she said. “It is an old-fashioned local business.” And it’s one that is part of the history of Tupelo. Gene Knight is the owner of the 796 East Main St. landmark. Since the 1950s, Dairy Kream has offered sweet treats to help cool down on those sweltering summer days. Malone said one milkshake that tops the list of favorites is the purple cow, whose ingredients include grape soda and ice cream along with other flavors. Dipped cones also are big sellers for the business. Milkshakes, malts and sundaes also top the list of go-to confectionery treats to help beat the heat. A variety of other foods are also sold. Dairy Kream does not accept credit or debit cards. Walk up to order, or call 662-842-7838 to order in advance. Continued on page 34 AUGUS T 2020 | INVITATION

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food truck frenzy

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or those in search of a full meal or more substantial snack, you will find a variety of food trucks around northeast Mississippi with myriad menu options, including:

OXFORD JAKE’S CRAFT BBQ 305 JACKSON AVE. WEST

In addition to barbecue, owner Jake Houston offers a “Sammie of the Day” and tacos. For more information, call 662-801-3752.

Taylor Grocery Food Truck 1933 UNIVERSIT Y AVE.

Catfish plates with hushpuppies and fries, catfish taco plates, chicken tenders, shrimp, barbecue sandwiches, barbecue nachos and more. Find menus and specials on Facebook, at taylorgrocerycatering.com, or call 662-701-9877.

TUPELO Local Mobile

For almost seven years, Curt McLellan’s big blue truck has rolled out his Cajun-flair food in Tupelo and Lee County. Follow Local Mobile on social media for daily locations and menus.

The Gypsy Food Truck

Owners Katy Pruett and Mickey Fratesi offer daily staples such as a grilled bohemian burger, fresh pimiento cheese and the Fratesi Italian salad. Popular specials are spicy crawfish nachos and Philly cheese steak tacos. For locations and menu, follow the truck on social media or call 662-820-9940.

Jo’s Cafe

Owners Jennifer Brignac and Johnny Cook offer a daily food menu, which includes their award-winning fresh, hand-cut Idaho potato “FatBoy” fries, coated in a special blend batter, and burgers and Philly cheese steak sandwiches served on low-carb bread. For more inofrmation, follow “Jo’s Cafe food truck” on Facebook or call 228-342-0636.

Taqueria Ferrus 1141 WEST MAIN ST.

CORINTH Grandma’s Hands

If it’s wings that you crave, Grandma’s Hands in Corinth offers a variety of flavors daily. For locations and daily offerings, call 901-376-4651.

D’Shy’s

Located in the old Fred’s parking lot near Shiloh and Harper Road, D’Shy’s is an old trolley converted into a food truck. Owner Frederick Mays has been selling tamales for 13 years. Call 662-643-8114 for more information.

Water Valley Wiggly’s

Creative tacos and burritos, including the Mississippi Burrito with fried catfish. To learn more, call 662-707-0075 or search for “Wiggly’s” on Facebook.

Six Peas Catering

“Fry-Day” dinners and Sunday brunch pop-ups. Search for “Six Peas Catering” on Facebook for dates, locations and menus.

Pontotoc Rosie’s Grab and Go

Juan Carlos Acosta and his employees provide authentic Mexican staples including tacos, quesadillas and tortas. Open 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday-Saturday. Find them on Facebook or call 662-231-2234.

Rosie’s, which offers various hot sandwiches, from burgers to sausage dogs, is found in the parking lot of the Price Cutter/former Save A Lot in Pontotoc. Call 662-297-4714 for more information.

Edible Bliss Mobile Eatery

Goku Japanese Express

Gourmet meets comfort food in Chicago native Marshandria Grice’s food truck that serves up egg rolls in a variety of flavors, including Philly cheese steak, taco and vegetarian options. For times, menu and locations, search “MS Edible Bliss” on Facebook or call 662-706-4647.

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1615 UNIVERSIT Y AVE.

Located behind the Dollar General on Highway 15, Goku offers grilled Japanese. Open 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday; 3-8:30 p.m. Friday; and noon-8:30 p.m. Saturday. For more information, call 662-736-2212.


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A NORTHEAST MISSISSIPPI MOTHER AND DAUGHTER SHARE A LOVE FOR ART. WRIT TEN BY M. SCOT T MORRIS

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he art of creating something new requires making one decision after another. The rule applies to a painting as well as to a life. Or, in this case, it applies to two lives. Dot Courson and her daughter, Susan Patton, are full-time artists, but that hasn’t always been the case. When Patton was a child, Courson was a nurse. “I didn’t paint in those days. I was too busy working and raising a family,” said Courson, a 67-year-old Pontotoc resident. Patton followed her mother’s lead into the healthcare world by becoming a physical therapist. She found her own way into art and then gave it her full attention in 2017. “I’m painting because God gave me the resources and the ability and the desire. I’m following him in this,” said Patton, 45, of

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PHOTOGRAPHED BY JOE WORTHEM


Bruce. “I’m trying to be truthful with my life — sincere and authentic.” Courson enjoys painting intricate Southern scenes, including sunsets, country roads and cotton patches. Patton is known for her portraits but also does still life. When they get the chance on pleasant days, both can be found set up somewhere outside with paints and easels for plein air painting. “We both love plein air,” Courson said. “It’s just fun.” They also study art books, attend workshops and apply themselves to one canvas after another. The quality of their

finished works depends on the number and nature of the many decisions that accumulate along the way. “To start, the goal is making art and not just a painting,” Courson said. ”There’s a big difference.” The COVID-19 pandemic has delayed an opportunity for viewers to judge Courson and Patton’s results for themselves. The pair were slated to grace the walls at GRIT in Taylor beginning in August. That’s been pushed back to spring. Samples of their work are available at dotcourson.com and susanpattonart.com. A December open house and upcoming

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workshops will be listed on Patton’s website. She postponed two workshops because of the pandemic. “She usually gives them all over the country,” Courson said. Neither artist relies on selling at festivals, which have been canceled or postponed during the pandemic, so they focused on finishing commissions and developing skills. Their work has been recognized by American Women Artists, American Impressionists Society and more. “She and I both, mother and daughter, got into the Eastern Oil Painters of America’s Regional Show. That was a big honor,” Courson said. “We’ve gotten into a lot of shows together.” Courson is recognized as a “Legend of the Visual Arts” at the Mississippi Arts and Entertainment Museum in Meridian. Her photograph is positioned next to photos of country singer Tammy Wynette and blues musician Othar Turner. “We were there taking a picture of the display, and a line was forming. We were going to get out of their way,” Courson said. “It turned out the staff had learned I was there and wanted to meet me. I was so thrilled.” Their work has been purchased by art collectors around the country. One Mississippi family has an appreciation for both artists.

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“Mine didn’t go in the main house,” Courson said. “It’s in the guest house.” “Mine’s in the big house,” Patton said with a smile. Planning is a major part of their success. Mother and daughter agreed that a painting begins long before picking up a brush. “A lot of artists don’t make decisions,” Patton said. “They just paint.” Patton’s husband got an impromptu lesson in how his wife thinks when he accompanied her to a turnip patch. “I pulled up a turnip, looked at it and started looking around the field, kind of staring off. My husband said, ‘I thought we were going to get some turnips to paint,’” Patton said. “I had to get the atmosphere. You compose and plan the painting in your mind even before you put your painting on

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canvas. I have to get the atmosphere.” The work itself can go smoothly but not always. Part of painting is knowing when things aren’t going well. Patton and Courson have different ways of dealing with inevitable obstacles. “A lot of times I’ll clear it off and start over,” Patton said. “She will do that,” Courson said. “I can’t. I have to try to fix it.” At different times in their lives, both artists exchanged secure jobs for the ups and downs of creativity. Now, their worlds are filled with color and inspiration as well as the shared desire to push themselves and their talents as far as they’ll go. “Make the effort and decide,” Courson said. “That’s all you can do,” Patton added.


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Companion Gardening NOW ENTERING ITS SECOND DECADE, O X F O R D ’ S O N LY C O M M U N I T Y G A R D E N I S G R O W I N G U P.

WRITTEN BY SARAH LIGON PHOTOGRAPHED BY JOE WORTHEM

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ucked behind the Old Armory Pavilion, in what was once a little-used baseball field, the Oxford Community Garden has grown over the past decade from a scratchy patch of compacted red soil and Bermuda grass into a half acre of lush flowers, vegetables and fruiting shrubs, thanks to the work of dedicated volunteer gardeners. On a recent spring day — before the COVID-19 pandemic changed the nature of social gatherings — the garden was bustling with people during its monthly work day. New gardeners were being assigned plots. The old hands weeded a dense row of communal blueberry bushes. Meanwhile, garden member Andrew Gordon sat beneath a honeysuckle arbor plucking a harp for the workers’ enjoyment. This is a far cry from the garden’s earliest days. The seeds of the idea to start a garden anyone in the community could join began with Oxford resident Susie Adams. On a trip to Finland for work, Adams saw her first community garden. “People had their chairs out there and their kids out there and they were hanging out and they had art in the garden,” Adams said. “It seemed like such a neat community place. I thought, ‘We have to do this in Oxford!’” In 2009, she formed a task force with a handful of interested gardeners, applied for $5,000 in grants, and approached then-mayor Pat Patterson about finding a suitable plot of land. The plot that was settled on was not Adams’ first choice. The soil was poor and deer were a problem. The first season was given over to trucking in suitable soil and building raised beds and an 8-foot-tall fence. But the central location at University and Bramlett was ideal, and it has only improved with time. The city has since added a bus

Oxford Community Garden members work together to sow seeds and tend to crops in their plots behind the Old Armory Pavilion. The results boast much more than just fresh produce. AUGUS T 2020 | INVITATION

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stop and skate park, and the Oxford Community Market meets on Tuesdays in the refurbished pavilion space. Today the garden is a popular place, and there is often a waiting list for its 50 available plots. Plots range in size from 4-by-8 to 16by-16 and cost between $15 and $35 per year. There are also several 3-by-3 children’s plots available at no cost. The $10 membership dues pay for tools, compost and mulch. Most say that’s a pretty good deal: All they need to bring is enthusiasm and some seeds. But that’s not why they joined or why they stay. It’s about community. “I personally love the community aspect of gardening. That’s one of the reasons I’ve been garden manager for so long,” said garden manager Tiffany Benson, who, for the past seven years has volunteered to organize the garden’s group work days and plot assignments, arrange for deliveries of compost and mulch, and help gardeners troubleshoot problems from invasive weeds to fire ants. “I enjoy seeing people on work days. I know everyone in the garden. It’s a privilege.”

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Other gardeners see an educational opportunity. “We started the garden because we wanted to show our children where food comes from and so that they can grow their own food wherever they go,” said David Ray. He and his wife Meaghan Gallagher have turned their large plot into a learning lab for their four children, who range in age from 4 to 11. Last summer the children experimented with growing a “Three Sisters” garden, interplanting corn, squash and beans, which provide support for one another while replenishing the soil. “We had read that it’s what Native Americans grew, and we wanted to see if it would work for us,” Ray said. “And it worked.” Their Seminole pumpkins, an heirloom variety from Florida, flourished. Whatever the draw, all the gardeners believe in the joy of getting their hands into the rich, black soil and growing food they can eat. “There is something very satisfying about getting dirt under your fingernails, smelling the green smell on your hands after pulling


weeds, and then occasionally, when you are lucky, eating — and sharing — the fruits of your labors,” said Sam Lisi, who joined the garden immediately after moving to Oxford six years ago. One of the early tenets of the garden was sharing with the wider community. Since the inaugural season, four of the garden’s largest plots have been dedicated as “Community Harvest” and are grown exclusively for The Pantry, Oxford’s emergency food donation station. Spearheading this effort are Beckett and Mary Hartwell Howorth, who donated hundreds of pounds of produce to The Pantry last year. Last summer, health concerns kept the Howorths away from the garden, but other members stepped in to help. Shirley Gray rallied volunteers to come out and weed, water and harvest at the height of the hot Mississippi summer. “Oxford has a fabulous food pantry, and it is filled with good food for people that need that help,” said Gray. “However, we all know everybody needs more access to fresh vegetables, and that’s what the garden is able to provide.” Of course the COVID-19 outbreak put the brakes on the “community” aspect of community gardening. For a time, gardeners staggered their visits, coming individually or in family groups to tackle communal jobs such as mowing and weeding. Now they can visit with each other again, from a safe AUGUS T 2020 | INVITATION

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“social distance” and look forward to the day when they can resume their festive work days. In one respect the pandemic seeded a new opportunity: floral deliveries. This past June, Lesley Walkington began taking colorful bouquets of purple coneflower, blue Bachelor’s buttons, yellow lilies and zinnias of every hue to Oxonions in communal living centers, such as the Mississippi State Veterans Home, who remain on lockdown because they are especially vulnerable to the virus. “We wanted to let the veterans know they are not forgotten, so we shared flowers we have grown in our plot, knowing that flowers bring instant happiness to all,” said Walkington, who also belongs to the Oxford Garden Club and helps maintain the club’s plot of cutting flowers at one of the entrances to the community garden. More of this outreach is what garden president Junaid Rehman wants to see in the garden’s second decade: more plots, bigger plots, and bigger contributions to the community through donations. “I’m also trying to bring a multi-national community to the garden so that we can learn from each other,” said Rehman, who has introduced his garden neighbors to growing the sugar cane and loofah of his native Pakistan and has learned from them how to overwinter onions and garlic. Garden members are from Canada, Poland, Nepal, Sri Lanka, India, Pakistan and across the U.S. Rehman believes this diversity is central to the garden’s success. Like in a three sister’s garden, each member plays a supporting role to help the garden thrive. As the final pre-pandemic work day drew to a close, the scene in the garden was much like the one that had inspired Adams all those years ago: three generations of Oxonians spread out across the garden, planting and dreaming of the season to come.

Get growing with the Oxford Community Garden Association: web: oxfordcga.org | email: oxfordcga@gmail.com

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OXFORD COMMUNITY MARKET PHOTOGRAPHED BY ABBEY EDMONSON

People gathered to sell and buy healthy, local food during the June 30 Oxford Community Market, held at the Old Armory Pavilion in Oxford. The market takes place there on Tuesdays from 3 to 6:30 p.m. Learn more at oxfordcommunitymarket.com.

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1. Frank Stark and Kailey Coker 2. Dria Price and Halima Salazar 3. Cristie Ellis with Dan, Ruh and Keziah Stout 4. David and Gladne Harris 5. Everett and Cindy Jackson 6. Thomas, Bronwynn, Joseph and Julia Webster

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FOSTER GRANDPARENT EVENT PHOTOGRAPHED BY MEGAN WOLFE

Lafayette County’s Foster Grandparent program lauded its volunteers June 11 with a drive-thu event at Oxford Conference Center. The 87 volunteers, who offer friendship, tutoring and mentoring to children with special or exceptional needs, received boxed lunches from Newk’s and gift bags.

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1. Jamie and Lee Morgan 2. Sha’ Simpson, Mary Lee Henderson and Teresa Satterfield 3. John Stanford and Tamara Wadlington 4. Michael Satterfield and Arledia Bennett 5. Judy Hardaway and Leigh Jurney 6. Dorothy Peel and Nicole Rockette

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JUNETEENTH CELEBRATION PHOTOGRAPHED BY ABBEY EDMONSON

As part of the 12th annual Oxford Juneteenth celebration, a unity walk took place June 20, with participants walking to the Square from the Coach Howell Activity Center on Price Street and hanging posters with messages of unity, peace and equality. 1

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1. Jackie Certion, Alonzo Hilliard, Sue Fino and Marjorie Buckley 2. Sally and Chester Starks with Willie Archie 3. AJ Toliver, Quayle Blackmon, Bri Ducksworth, Frances Howell and James Ivy 4. AJ Toliver, Quayle Blackmon, Bri Ducksworth and Kesha Howell Atkinson 5. Richard Howorth and Cristen Hemmins 6. Pattybell Jernigan and Landry D’jock 7. Kelly Bates, Whardeh Judeh and Drew Sullivan 8. Mary Johnson and Berlinda Campbell

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TASTING AT THE SIPP PHOTOGRAPHED BY JESSICA RICHARDSON

The Sipp in Oxford hosted a sparkling cocktail tasting June 30. Billed as “a perfect summer soiree,” the event offered a twist on a few traditional favorites paired with a delicious sampling of edibles.

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1. Chris Pugh and Tia Goodwin 2. Jeffrey, Nancy, Danica and Jason Boyd 3. Kim Crausby and Rachel Ray 4. Ramona and Dwight Moss 5. Donna McCormack, Kristy Luse, Jen Phipps and Millie McAlilly 6. Sarah Adair and Tamsie Morris

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STORYBOOK ART CAMP PHOTOGRAPHED BY MEGAN WOLFE

Beginner and intermediate Storybook Art Camp, held in June at the Powerhouse Community Arts Center in Oxford, offered participants the opportunity to create art using the techniques found in books by Dr. Seuss, Eric Carle and others.

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1. Liam Thompson and Ruby Baquie 2. Frances King and Murphy Johnson 3. Andi Bedsworth and Sasha Briggs 4. Chloe Young, Murphy Johnson and Liz Hopson 5. Francis Hayes-Lawrence and Allie Rose Baquie

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FROZEN PHOTOGRAPHED BY WHITNEY WORSHAM

In the middle of the summertime heat of June, people came from near and far to chill out watching Corinth Theatre-Arts’ sold-out production of “Disney Frozen Jr.”

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1. Hallie Kate Dierks and Liza Smith 2. Baylee Anna Bain and Jon Worth Garrett 3. Gency Coleman, Chloe Vines and Sheridan Marlar 4. Laina McGee and Mary Kate Smith 5. Shawn and Jeff Bernier 6. Halle Riddle and Cache King 7. Will Senf and Blaine Teeters 8. Brennan Baxter and Reese Brown 9. Roman Swindle and Philip Loncar 10. Chloe Vines and Scarlett Swindle 11. Taylor Blythe and Halle Faith Scarbrough

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TUPELO FARMERS’ DEPOT PHOTOGRAPHED BY LISA ROBERTS

People visited the weekly Downtown Tupelo Farmers’ Depot June 20. The market is open from 6 a.m. until noon on Saturdays through Oct. 24 at 415 South Spring St. Vendors offer fresh, locally sourced produce, honey, baked goods and even fresh flowers. 1

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1. Vicky Young, Michael Lane and Dynastee Burnett 2. Betty Hudson, Jamie Burton and Licia Kennedy 3. Leita Stark 4. Jean and Billy Daniels 5. Chris and Chelsea Holland 6. Katie Wright 7. Thomas Horgan 8. Gary Haynes

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SKIP GLEASON MEMORIAL PHOTOGRAPHED BY LISA ROBERTS

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The ninth annual Skip Gleason Memorial Golf Tournament was held June 27-28 at Natchez Trace Golf Course in Saltillo. Reed Lindsey and Jackson Griffin were winners of the two-man scramble tournament that benefits the Skip Gleason Memorial Fund at the University of Mississippi Foundation. 1

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7. Mitch Eubanks and Winky Weathers 8. Peyton Dunlap, Matt Baker, Chad Armstrong and Rusty Lamphere 9. Matt Billingsley and Alex Richey 10. Frank Bensieck, Charlie Tucker, Clint Berthay and Will Morgan 11. Will Lamons, Ed Tedford and Tyler Nelson 12. Bradford Ridgway and Rick Nelms

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OUT & ABOUT Ju n io r Au x i l i a r y D o n’t Touc h a Tr uc k

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North MS Oral & Ma xillofacial Surger y Schola rship

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D i lwo r t h V i r t u a l E lv i s Pe t Pa ra d e

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1. Julia and Stewart Burnett 2. Elizabeth and William Blackwood with Oxford Fire Department officials 3. Kaylee and Kash Dunlap with Ashley Hilton 4. William West, Kelly Anderson and Samuel Lott 5. April Hood with Abilene 6. Jessica Criddle with Paisley

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N E I G H B O R A R IE LLE

INTERVIEWED BY ABBEY EDMONSON

H U DS O N |

PHOTOGRAPHED BY JAMES VINSON

Q: What has made you most proud during

your years at the university? No matter where I went to college, I wanted to make a difference in the lives of those who needed it most. Immediately after coming to the university, I noticed the lack of student involvement in the racial reconciliation work the university had already begun. I made it my mission to dive into that work and to inspire other students from all spectrums to also be intertwined in those efforts. My proudest moments have been playing a pivotal role in the relocation of the Confederate statue while serving as president of the Black Student Union and a senator in the Associated Student Body and working with senior administrators to implement mandatory diversity and bias training and culturally responsive and culturally diverse curriculum.

A:

A

rielle Hudson, 22, is a recent graduate of the University of Mississippi. In November, Hudson, of Tunica, became the school’s first Black female Rhodes Scholar.

Q: What did it feel like to be named a Rhodes Scholar? A: I was pretty much in shock, so during my initial reaction while in the room, I grabbed the arms of my chair and mouthed, “Hold up — what?” I think it still hasn’t hit me yet that this is now my reality. I don’t know 72

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when it will, but I think it probably won't until I actually get to Oxford, England, and start my new journey.

Q: What are your plans for the future? A: In September, I will begin a two-year

law program at The University of Oxford under Pembroke College. After graduating from Oxford, I plan to return to the U.S. and attend law school. Eventually, I want to practice law as a civil rights attorney, and I want to be an education policymaker.

Q: Why does Mississippi hold a special place in your heart? A: I believe in Mississippi, and I want to make Mississippi a better place to live for all people. Although I am sure I will move around a bit, I plan to come back. There are so many of us losing hope and leaving the state without realizing the negative impact that we're also making by doing so. If we all leave and never come back, then what would be left of Mississippi? Who will be left to truly work to change it for the better? Q: Do you have any words of encouragement for other students?

A: Stay the course and keep the faith. You

have a purpose that is bigger than yourself and that is always worth fighting for no matter how hard life may get at times. Believe that you can do anything, work towards it, pray, and it will happen.


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