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I N

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135

DEPA RTMENT S

EVENTS:

NORTHEAST

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Letter From the Publisher

30

Restaurant News

94

Salvation Army Thanksgiving

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Contributors + Who’s New

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In Season: Ribbons & Bows

96

Night for a Hand Up

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Digital Details

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What’s In

98

Corinth Holiday Open House

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Calendar

110

Out & About: Northeast

100

Tupelo Holiday Tree Festival

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Holiday Happenings

130

Out & About: Oxford

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Taste of Tupelo

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Shoutouts

135

Recipes: Holiday Feast

104

“Seussical Jr.”

106

Veterans Day Ceremonies

108

Baldwyn Open House

EVENTS:

OXFORD

112

Tailgate for Palmer

122

Regents Fall Festival

114

The One Night Stand Art Show

124

Genius Trivia Night

116

Women of Distinction

126

Great 38 Race

118

Monster’s Ball

128

Quarterback Club Meeting

120

Buddy Walk

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F E AT U R E S

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FE ATURES 42 Age Your Reds

Have an older bottle of red tucked away for a special occasion? Aged wines are worth the wait.

48 Climb Every Mountain From radiation to Rainier, an Oxford breast cancer survivor embraces the journey.

54 Ringing in the Holidays

Handbell choirs herald the holiday season and ring in worship services in north Mississippi year-round.

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ON THE COVER 69 Gnome for the Holidays

Miniature gnome tableaux bring Christmas cheer to Oxford’s Square.

77 Party On!

New Year’s Eve celebrations in Tupelo and Oxford include fun for the community and a gala for a cause.

85 The Beautiful Mysterious Contributions from Mississippi artists, writers, historians and local experts illuminate a new collection of William Eggleston photographs.

62 Eight Days of Hope

A north Mississippi disaster relief ministry is rebuilding lives, eight days at a time.

The Invitation Magazines staff got creative making tiny gnome scenes to help spread holiday cheer around north Mississippi this season. Read more inside, and don’t forget to look for our miniature displays this month all around town! PHOTOGRAPHED BY JOE WORTHEM

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L E T T E R from the P U B L I S H E R

Remember all those holiday ornaments you made in elementary school? My mom still hangs mine on her tree every year. Likewise, I have eight years worth of special ornaments created by my daughter hanging on my own tree. But holiday crafts aren’t just for kids. Something about the season seems to spark our sense of fun and creativity, no matter our age. It’s most often the holidays when we somehow find the time to prepare a special meal or perfectly wrap a gift. We may cherish memories of our holiday creations for many years to come, especially when we make them with others. This year, the Invitation Magazines staff

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and I did just that. As I read the story of the holiday gnome scenes Deb Pittman and Angela Maloney created with their children, it struck me that maybe adults can be crafty too. So, the day we shipped this issue to the printer, we got together with glue guns and plenty of fake snow and built our own special gnome scenes that you will see all around north Mississippi this season. It took us all back to when we were grade school kids making ornaments — we had a blast, made a big mess and, most importantly, made some lasting memories as a staff. You can learn how to create your own gnome home on page 74. When you do, be sure to share them with us using #invitationholiday. Who knows, you might be featured in our next issue. If gnomes are not your thing, but you still want to try your hand at a fun project or two, be sure and check out our giftwrapping guide on page 34 or some delicious traditional holiday recipes on page 135. We’ve got lots of great things in store for you in 2020. We will be adding a new

@INVITATIONOXFORD @INVITATIONM AGA ZINE

INVITATION | DECEMBER 2019/JANUARY 2020

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Digital Details page in each issue to highlight fun and interactive happenings on our website and social media pages throughout the month. Take a peek on page 18. And help us welcome to our staff Janie Poulton, who will be taking over as our social media coordinator and helping with this effort. We’ve also added another new staff member to the Invitation Magazines family, Leslie Criss. Leslie is an award-winning writer who has shared stories with many of us over the last 20 years. We’re thrilled to welcome her to our team. Be sure and look for her stories in our northeast magazine and on our website each and every month. We hope you have a wonderful holiday season with friends and family as we spend time with our own. We will see you right back here in February. Happy Holidays,

RACHEL M. WEST, PUBLISHER

@INVOXFORD @INVMAGA ZINE


PUBLISHERS

Phil and Rachel West

EDITORIAL

EDITORIAL DIRECTOR Emily Welly EXECUTIVE EDITORS Leslie Criss Allison Estes OPERATIONS DIRECTOR Mary Moreton CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Susan Baldani Rachel Burchfield Caitlyn Clegg Barbara Ensrud Sarah Hooper Clint Kimberling Ginny McCarley COPY EDITOR Ashley Arthur INTERN 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 PHOTOGRAPHERS Paul Gandy Jim Hendrix Nancy Manroe Jessica Richardson Lisa Roberts Megan Wolfe Whitney Worsham SOCIAL MEDIA COORDINATOR Janie Poulton

ADVERTISING

ADVERTISING CONSULTANTS Alise M. Emerson Leigh Lowery Lynn McElreath Moni Simpson Whitney Worsham Anna Zemek ADVERTISING DESIGNERS Paul Gandy Becca Pepper Hallie Thomas 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.

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C O N T R I B U T O R S Barbara Ensrud is an author and journalist whose wine articles have been published in The Wall Street Journal, Vogue, GQ, Garden and Gun, Decanter and Food and Wine. She taught wine classes in Oxford during the ’90s, and then at Duke University for 12 years. The most delightful way to learn about wine, she says, is to taste it. Read her blog at bewinewise.com and find more advice at invitationoxford.com and invitationmag.com.

Rachel Burchfield is a business journalist who enjoys freelance feature writing in her spare time. She is a devotee of the British royal family, which led her to create a blog about Duchesses Kate and Meghan this year. In addition to Invitation Magazines, she is a contributor to StyleBlueprint and publishes a second blog, Worth the Wait.

Jim Hendrix’s childhood artistic interest resurfaced in 2013 when he began taking a camera on walks around town. Soon he was capturing iconic images of Oxford, Ole Miss and the surrounding area. His interests have branched out to include wildlife, street photography and candid portraits. He makes his own fine-art prints and canvases and sells them through local retailers.

“Age Your Reds” | page 42

“Climb Every Mountain” | page 48

Clint Kimberling is director of marketing for the University of Alabama Press. In his spare time, he enjoys running, watching sports and playing with his three cats. In addition to Invitation Magazines, his writing has also appeared in Portico Jackson, Mississippi Magazine, Delta Magazine and Town & Gown. “Party On!” | page 77

“Gnome for the Holidays” photos | page 69

“Eight Days of Hope” | page 62

“Gnome for the Holidays” | page 69

Susan Baldani is an author and freelance writer for various local magazines in the U.S., as well as in Canada and England. She lives in Basking Ridge, New Jersey, with her partner Steve and black cat, Boo, and of course loves Bruce Springsteen. “Ringing in the Holidays” | page 54

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Caitlyn Clegg works for Red Window Communications, an Oxford-based communications agency. An Athens, Georgia, native, she moved to Oxford to attend Ole Miss. Now a graduate and full-time resident, she appreciates the slower pace that Oxford has to offer. In her free time, she enjoys traveling and spending time with her dogs, Charlie and Bruce.

INVITATION | DECEMBER 2019/JANUARY 2020

“The Beautiful Mysterious” | page 85

Ginny McCarley is a freelance writer from Birmingham, Alabama, who has written for Invitation Magazines for five years. She moved to Oxford to pursue a master’s degree in English from the University of Mississippi, but she, her husband and their two young kids loved Oxford so much they never left. Her work has also appeared in The Washington Post as well as other publications throughout the Southeast. Sarah Hooper is a business development consultant for McCarty Architects. She holds a master’s degree in policy analysis from New York University and has worked on projects in architecture, the arts, health care and public policy. She has lived in Washington, D.C., New York, Colorado, South Africa and England, but now lives in Tupelo with her family and her dog, Max.


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L e sl ie C r i s s E xe c ut ive E d ito r A native of Grenada, Mississippi, Leslie Criss received her undergraduate degree in English from Mississippi College. For eight years, she taught junior high and high school English on the Gulf Coast, then worked on a master’s degree in journalism at the University of Mississippi. Her first newspaper job was at The Carthaginian, a small weekly paper in the center of the state. She covered city, county and school boards, wrote features, took and developed photos and began writing a weekly column that continued at various newspapers for nearly three decades. Leslie spent eight years as features editor, writer and columnist at The Vicksburg Post, and for the past 20 years, has been features editor and an award-winning columnist at the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal. She is thrilled to be a new member of the Invitation Magazines family and looks forward to continuing to tell stories about northeast Mississippi.

Ja n ie Pou lto n S o c i a l Me d i a C o o rd i n ato r Janie is a senior integrated marketing communications major at the University of Mississippi. While growing up in Lexington, Kentucky, she learned to appreciate a small town with deep roots and Southern traditions, and she has fallen in love with Mississippi while living here. Janie is especially interested in the arts, and she loves connecting with people. In her new position at Invitation Magazines, she is looking forward to using her communication and media skills to connect locals through the music, food, fashion and communities that define north Mississippi. DECEMBER 2019/JANUARY 2020 | INVITATION

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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

Hol id ay S c ave n ge r Hu nt

instaL O V E Want to see your photo here? Share a special picture on social media with the hashtag #invitationoxford or #invitationmagazine for a chance to be featured.

We were inspired by the story on page 69! Look around the Oxford Square, downtown Corinth and downtown Tupelo this month for some special Invitation Magazines miniature holiday scenes tucked into corners near the storefronts. When you find one, snap a photo with it and post on social media with the hashtag #invitationholiday so we can help spread the holiday cheer.

Fr id ay Fo o d Blo g

D e c k t he H a l l s Ready for another Saturday in Oxford. #invitationoxford L O C A T I O N : Oxford Square U S E R N A M E : @abbygriffith

Mini Baked Brie Puffs with Honey-Bourbon Glaze

Oxford City Hall

Follow us on Facebook and Instagram so you don’t miss our Friday food blog posts. From holiday feasts to weeknight suppers to after-school snacks, we’ve got ideas from regular contributors and local celebrity chefs that are sure to spice up your recipe rotation.

We want to see your holiday decorations! Do you have an elaborately decorated house, seasonal floral arrangements or perfectly wrapped presents under a twinkling tree? Snap a photo and share it on social media with the hashtag #invitationholiday. A full day of daycare makes for a tired, happy pup! #playallday #tupelodogs #mytupelo #sweetbella #invitationmagazine L O C A T I O N : Macy’s Townhouse for Dogs U S E R N A M E : @macystownhouse

CALENDAR AND EVENTS

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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@INVITATIONOXFORD @INVITATIONM AGA ZINE

INVITATION | DECEMBER 2019/JANUARY 2020

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@INVOXFORD @INVMAGA ZINE


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CALENDAR

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JANUARY 2020

2K20 Party of the New Decade NYE Party DECEMBER 31

Country, rock and pop band BuckShot Daisy invites all to their musical celebration of the new decade alongside Corinth band, Prowler. Tickets include entry, a midnight champagne toast and party favors. Tickets $30. 7 p.m.-12:30 a.m., The Franklin Courtyard, Corinth.

Annual Toy Exhibit

facebook.com/events/the-franklin-courtyard

THROUG H JANUARY 6

This year’s annual display at Tupelo’s Oren Dunn City Museum features the museum’s own collection made by Rich Toys Inc., a toy manufacturer based in Tupelo from 1953 to 1962. The company is known for its iconic wooden toys with mechanical action. Tickets $2-$4, veterans free with a military ID. Open weekdays 8 a.m.-5 p.m.

Oxford Charity Ball and Ugly Holiday Sweater 5K DECEMBER 7

BANCORPSOUTH ARENA

facebook.com/orendunnmuseum

Public Ice Skating

Junior Auxiliary of Oxford, a women’s organization that benefits Oxford children, hosts its annual Charity Ball at Castle Hill. The “Bid for the Kids” ball includes dinner, a silent auction, a wine pull and a raffle. Don a hideous holiday sweater and join the morning 5K or fun run. All proceeds benefit JA programs in Oxford and Lafayette County. Run registration $30. Ball tickets $60. 7:30 p.m., Country Club of Oxford.

CASABlanca

jaofoxford.com

DECEMBER 31

Wreaths Across America Ceremony

Ring in the new year at an event benefiting CASA of Lafayette County. See website for ticket pricing. 7:30 p.m.-1 a.m., the Powerhouse. Read more on page 78.

DECEMBER 14

CASAofLafayetteCounty.com

Practice your figure skating skills at BancorpSouth Arena this winter. From mid-November to late January, the ice skating rink is open to the public on most weekends and some additional days. Tickets $12, season skate pass (10 sessions) $100. See website for dates and times.

Nearly 8,000 veterans are laid to rest in Corinth National Cemetery. On National Wreaths Across America Day, volunteers lay wreaths on hundreds of these graves, as in ceremonies all over America, all synchronized with the wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery. Free. Help lay wreaths anytime the day of the event; a ceremony takes place at noon.

bcsarena.com

wreathsacrossamerica.org

tupelo.net/newyear

THRO U G H JA N UA RY 20

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New Year’s Eve Celebration in Fairpark DECEMBER 31

Pay a birthday tribute to Elvis and usher in the city’s 150th year with live music, a ball drop, fireworks and more in Tupelo’s Fairpark. Read more on page 80.


Blue Suede Shoes JA NUA RY 11

Tupelo Ballet, the Tupelo CVB and BancorpSouth present the Alabama Ballet’s production of “Blue Suede Shoes,” a full-length ballet danced to Elvis Presley songs. Tickets $20. 3 p.m., Tupelo High School Performing Arts Center. tupeloballet.com

Pop Up Oxford J A N U A R Y 1 8-2 6

This weeklong celebration of art, food, music and culture features a diverse list of events including a songwriters competition, a cocktail class, the Fiber Arts Festival, a day of service and much more. popupoxfordms.com

MLK Day JA N UA RY 20

This federal holiday commemorates the life and service of Martin Luther King Jr., one of America’s greatest champions for racial equality and social justice. Most schools and many businesses are closed in observance.

National Pie Day JANUARY 23

Show off your baking skills or just indulge in a slice of your favorite pie today.

Winter Jam 2020 JA NUA RY 26

Christian music’s largest annual tour, featuring more than a dozen artists, comes to Tupelo. Tickets $15 at the door. 6 p.m., BancorpSouthArena, Tupelo. bcsarena.com DECEMBER 2019/JANUARY 2020 | INVITATION

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holiday

HAPPENINGS Christmas in Cotton Plant

Santa at Visit Oxford

ONGOING

Bring your phone or camera and snap a picture with Saint Nick himself at Visit Oxford. Free. 10 a.m.-noon.

Featured on TLC’s “My Crazy Obsession,” this 12-acre Christmas display of lights and inflatables is open Thursday-Saturday, with a few additional days throughout December. Free. 6-9 p.m. christmasincottonplant.com

DECEMBER 7

Happy Holidays From Broadway DECEMBER 8

Doors of Hope Holiday House Tour

The Corinth Symphony Orchestra hosts a holiday concert featuring Broadway star Laurie Gayle Stephenson and the Kossuth Elementary Music Makers led by Nancy Harvell. 2:30 p.m., Coliseum Civic Center, Corinth. Tickets $25; $10 for students.

DECEMBER 7 AND 21

corinthcoliseum.com

visitoxfordms.com

Walk through six holiday-decorated homes in Oxford’s North Lamar Historic District. Proceeds benefit Doors of Hope Transitional Ministries, an organization that helps those facing homelessness find permanent housing and employment. Presale tickets $20, day-of-event tickets $25. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. doorsofhopeoxford.org

“A Christmas Story” D E C E M B E R 12-1 4

Tupelo Community Theatre performs this Christmas classic featuring Ralphie Parker and his quest for a Red Ryder BB gun, just in time for the holidays. Adult tickets $20, student tickets $10. 7:30-9:30 p.m., Tupelo Community Theatre. tct.ms

Bubbe’s Table Dance the hora and enjoy Mile End Deli’s Montreal-style smoked meats and traditional Jewish comfort food at this third annual Hanukkah dinner with music by the Cakewalkers and cocktails crafted by Joe Stinchcomb. Tickets $40. 7-9 p.m., The Farmstead on Woodson Ridge, Oxford. jewishfederationoxfordms.org

FORD CENTER

DECEMBER 6

The Midtown Men Holiday Hits

Ornament Auction

DECEMBER 7

DECEMBER 13

Tupelo Ballet stages its annual performances of the classic holiday ballet “The Nutcracker.” Tickets $15-$30. 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., Tupelo High School Performing Arts Center.

Experience classic Christmas tunes such as “Winter Wonderland,” “Let It Snow” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” sung by The Midtown Men, a group of reunited stars from the Broadway hit Jersey Boys. See website for ticket pricing. 7:30 p.m., the Ford Center, Oxford.

Bid on ornaments made by local artists at this event hosted by the Yoknapatawpha Arts Council. Local food, live music and photos with Santa are also available. Free for arts council members, tickets $35 for individuals, $50 for couples. 6-9 p.m., the Powerhouse, Oxford.

tupeloballet.com

fordcenter.org

oxfordarts.com

“The Nutcracker” DECEMBER 7

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An Elvis Christmas With NMSO DECEMBER 14

North Mississippi Symphony Orchestra and the NMSO Children’s Chorus join with the choruses of Itawamba Community College, Northeast Mississippi Community College and veteran singer Terry Mike Jeffrey to perform perennial holiday favorites, as well as The King’s most beloved holiday tunes. Tickets $10-$30. 7:30 p.m., Tupelo High School Performing Arts Center. nmsymphony.com

Downtown Tupelo Holiday Home Tour D E C E M B E R 1 4-1 5

Tour seven festively decorated homes in Tupelo’s historic downtown neighborhood. Refreshments will be offered at one location, and unwrapped gifts will be collected during the tour for donation to a skilled nursing center. Tours take place 5-8 p.m. Saturday and 2-4 p.m. Sunday. Tickets $10, available at Relics Market Place and Artifacts by Relics, or by contacting Chris Grimes at 662-231-9235 or jcgrimes7743@gmail.com.

Dickens Christmas D ECE MB ER 20

The Iuka Development & Economic Association presents its annual Dickens Christmas event with strolling carolers, a live nativity scene, music in the gazebo and free carriage rides. Attendees are invited to wear Victorian-era costumes. 6-9 p.m., downtown Iuka. DECEMBER 2019/JANUARY 2020 | INVITATION

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S H O U T O U T S At this very special night sponsored by the Tim Tebow Foundation, everyone is a prom queen or king. On Feb. 7, 2020, the sixth anniversary of Night to Shine, close to 700 churches around the world will roll out the red carpet for anyone 14 or older with special needs. Guests get the royal treatment, including limousine rides, hair and makeup, shoeshine, corsage or boutonniere, a catered dinner and more, all at no cost. In Oxford, Grace Bible Church’s Night to Shine will take place 6-9 p.m. at the Oxford Conference Center. In New Albany, Hillcrest Baptist Church’s Night to Shine will take place 7-10 p.m. at the church. Hillcrest is one of 42 churches that participated in the event in its first year. Michelle Armstrong is a Tim Tebow representative and a member of the church’s special needs committee. “One of my favorite memories would be seeing the smiles on each face and knowing this is their night to shine and fit

HILLCREST BAPTIST CHURCH

N i g ht to S h i ne

in, in a world that always tells them no,” Armstrong said. Anyone can get involved with Night to Shine by donating or by registering as a volunteer. “It is a remarkable night and such a blessing,” Armstrong said. “When you sign up as a volunteer, you hope that you can be a blessing to the kings and queens in some

capacity; however, the volunteer is the one who walks away with the biggest blessing.” Visit hillcrestministries.com/nts to volunteer or donate to Hillcrest’s Night to Shine. To request to be added to the waitlist to attend, call 662-534-4821, extension 201. To volunteer, donate or register to attend Grace Bible’s Night to Shine, visit nighttoshineoxford.com.

C a l l a’s Mo no g ra m s When Calla Brassfield’s youngest child was born, she decided to become a stay-athome mom. She also bought a small sewing and embroidery machine and taught herself how to monogram. She’s now owner and designer of a successful business, Calla’s Monograms, in Bruce. Brassfield said one of the best parts about the business is the connection she forms with her clients. “You create a relationship when designing a custom piece,” Brassfield said. “You have to know and understand what your customers want. I love pulling that out of them and then seeing the joy and excitement on their faces when they see their item. It makes my day when they share their pictures with me.”

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Those relationships continue as customers return to her for special items to outfit their growing families. “Baby reveal items are my favorite,” Brassfield said. “I love that I get to be included in a very important time in their life. From the reveal, to their coming home outfit, to their first holidays and birthday shirts.” Brassfield finds inspiration for her projects from newly released designs. She sells her goods in a booth in Veronica Kate’s Floral and Gift Boutique in Bruce and online through Facebook and Etsy. She hopes to one day open her own store. Find Brassfield by searching “Calla’s Monograms” on Facebook or check out her Etsy shop at monogramsfrombrucems.


SHOUTOUTS

continued

TRACYE WYNN-MALONE PRUITT

R& B Awa rd W i n ne r S hy Pe r r y

Sharo “Shy” Perry of Abbeville is the recipient of the 2019 Josie Music Award for R&B Artist of the Year. The Josie Music Awards recognizes independent artists in multiple genres. Nominees and winners are selected by a team of industry professionals. “I was ecstatic,” Perry said. “And extremely happy. I felt like I could do cartwheels to the stage. I’m still feeling butterflies from it. I gave (the award) to my parents, and I plan on winning more.” Perry has music in her blood. Her father is blues artist Bill “Howl-N-Madd” Perry. She started performing with the family band, The Perrys, when she was very young, and her first two songs were released when she was just 8 years old. Perry is scheduled to go on tour with her dad to promote her album, “Brand New Day,” alongside her father’s album, “Thankful for the Blues.” She is also preparing to release a new album. “(The new album) is going to be really different from what people who listen to my music would hear,” Perry said. “I want to keep it a secret.” Perry’s music is available at shyperry. bandcamp.com. DECEMBER 2019/JANUARY 2020 | INVITATION

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RESTAUR ANT O x fo rd

No r t he a s t

Oxford Gourmet & Gifts

Southern Craft Stove + Tap

D E L I V E R I N G | 4 0 0 S . L A M A R B LV D . S T E . C

N E W | 2 0 5 E . T R OY S T. , T U P E L O

Known for its high-quality oven-ready meals, lunch service and catering, this Oxford business is starting to deliver lunch through Fetcht, a locally based delivery company.

This family-friendly Oxford restaurant specializing in fire-roasted pizza and bistro fare with a Southern flare is opening a new location in Fairpark Tower in Tupelo. 662-234-6007

662-380-5264 | oxfordgourmetandgifts.com

southerncraftstoveandtap.com

All Shook Up Nutrition

Oxford Gourmet & Gifts

City Hall Cheesecake N E W | 2 3 1 1 J A C K S O N AV E . W.

Named for its original home in Hernando’s old city hall, this eatery serves up smallbatch cheesecake whole or by the slice, in more than 50 flavors. 662-469-9117 | cityhallcheesecake.com

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NEWS

Southern Craft Stove + Tap

The Dixie Diner

N E W | 4 0 0 8 W. M A I N S T. , T U P E L O

N E W | 1 0 0 W. M A D I S O N S T. , H O U S T O N

This nutrition shop sells meal-replacement shakes and loaded teas, all low in carbs, calories and fat. Follow the shop on Facebook for the latest flavors and specials.

This iconic roadside diner reopened in May 2019 serving downhome Southern food made fresh daily from local family recipes. Open Monday-Saturday 6:30 a.m.-2 p.m.

662-350-3806

662-567-4033

Donald Lee’s Downtown

Sweet Tea and Biscuits

N E W | 1 1 1 N . J A C K S O N S T. , H O U S T O N

S E R V I N G B R U N C H | 530 M A I N S T. , T U P E LO

There’s no TV here to distract diners from enjoying each other’s company or the Delta Italian/Creole/Americana food with beer and light wine. Open for lunch 11 a.m.2 p.m. Tuesday-Friday and Sunday. Dinner hours are 5-10 p.m. Thursday-Saturday. 662-631-5122

Sweet Tea’s second location inside FarmHouse Tupelo now offers a Saturday brunch menu featuring shrimp and grits, quiche and other favorites. Open 11 a.m.-2 p.m. TuesdaySaturday; brunch is served at the FarmHouse location only. 662-322-4053 | sweetteaandb.com

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B OW S TO START

JOE WORTHEM

Attach structure ribbon to a wrapped package, and set aside.

W

hen giving gifts, it’s the thought that counts of course. One way to show how much thought you’ve put into a gift is to make the wrapping on the outside just as special as the gift within. Swirlz in Tupelo offers monogramming and carries stationary and gifts for all occasions, including Tupelo mural products. Shoppers can drop off items bought there or elsewhere, and have them wrapped with their own signature paper, or choose from an assortment in the shop. Swirlz owner Shelly Daniel says a beautiful wrap job can make even a dollar-store gift look like a million bucks. “If you go to a ‘dirty Santa,’ or an ornament swap, the first one that gets picked is the one that looks beautiful,” Daniel said. “No one wants the sack. A beautiful box with a bow makes any gift better.” This year a nutcracker-themed paper is one of the featured holiday gift wrap choices at Swirlz. And just as important as the paper are the ribbons and bows. “I guess the secret to what we do that

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stands out with our wrapping is doing big bows with all colors, making it big and funky — making it extravagant,” Daniel said. “We make it look like the ideal gift.” Discount Building Supply in Oxford has an entire room filled with hundreds of types of ribbon, sold by the spool or by the yard. The ribbon room is open all year round, but offers several holiday-themed choices. The shop makes bows for any occasion, from Ole Miss bows during football season, to treetopper and wreath bows for the holidays. If you prefer to purchase your own paper and ribbon and wrap it yourself, Daniel has these tips to help you create a bow like a pro.

Cut another long piece of structure ribbon. This is the most important step in creating fullness and body for the bow. Create two big loops, then pinch in the middle and twist 180° to secure the loops.

Wrap delicate ribbon around the center of the loops, and secure the bow with a double knot.

M ATERIAL S - Structure ribbon 1½ inches wide to add body and fullness - Statement ribbon 2-3 inches wide - Delicate ribbon that’s thin and frilly - Pompom, ornament or other unique decorative piece

INVITATION | DECEMBER 2019/JANUARY 2020

Next, layer multiple strands of delicate ribbon together, folding them over to create one to two loops. Use a smaller piece of delicate ribbon to tie a double knot around the center.


BUILD THE BOW Layer pieces on top of each other, from largest to smallest, and tie together with delicate ribbon.

To do this, start with the structure ribbon piece on the bottom; then add a 6-inch piece of statement ribbon. Add more structure ribbon, if desired; then add delicate ribbon and decorative piece on top.

FINISH LIKE A PRO

Trim frayed or jagged edges with a traditional diagonal cut or the more professional dovetail cut. To neaten ends of wired ribbon, simply fold down the edges. DECEMBER 2019/JANUARY 2020 | INVITATION

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BLUE AND WHITE PL ANTER $175 SANCTUARY

SWE ATER $ 46 .9 9 LOVE & A DOG

U G G WOM EN ’ S MCK AY B O OT I E $1 49.9 5 AUSTIN’S SHOES

HANDMADE SOAPS $8 SHILOH APOTHECARY

S ANTA PL ATE $ 45 ANN’S OF CORINTH

PATAGONIA QUILTED SHIRT JACKE T $169 SHIRLEY DAWG’S

CHRISTM A S DISH TOWEL S $22 K ATES AND CO.

LEOPARD PRINT COAT $ 48 TFEAZELL

DIFFUSOR KIT $ 4 4.9 9 SHILOH APOTHECARY

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Age Your Reds H AV E A N O L D E R B O T T L E O F R E D T U C K E D AWAY F O R A S P E C I A L O C C A S I O N ? AGED WINES ARE WORTH THE WAIT. WRITTEN BY BARBARA ENSRUD

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PHOTOGRAPHED BY JOE WORTHEM


T

Barbara Ensrud is an author and journalist living in Durham, North Carolina. Her wine articles have been published in The Wall Street Journal, Vogue, GQ, Garden and Gun, Decanter and Food and Wine. She lived in Oxford and taught wine classes during the ’90s, and then at Duke University for 12 years. Her favorite wine memory is of curling up for a nap among the vines in Burgundy after a prolonged tasting of exuberant reds.

PHOTOGRAPHED AT MAGNOLIA WINE

ime does wonders for well-structured red wines. They will sometimes astonish you, as I discovered on a recent evening. What shall I drink tonight with dinner? That’s what was on my mind as I ventured to my wine cellar and surveyed the shelves. After several days of tasting aggressive, young reds, I was in the mood for something round and smooth — a Merlot perhaps — something with a little age on it. Shafer ’98? Too big for just me this evening. Oakencroft ’95? No, I wanted to surprise some wine-loving friends with that; some months ago this Virginia Merlot was terrific. I pulled another dusty bottle from its cubicle: Jaeger Merlot Ingleside 1986. Hmm … Good grief, it’s 32 years old! Probably gone, I thought; that’s old for a Merlot. (Except maybe Petrus, the Bordeaux red that is 95100% Merlot — the ’86 currently auctions at over $2,000 a bottle.) It’s probably dried out or oxidized, I thought, as I looked at the slightly tattered label. There was some sentiment attached. The wine was a gift from Bill and Lila Jaeger, co-founders of Rutherford Hill in Napa Valley, who made limited quantities of Merlot from the vineyard adjacent to their house on Ingleside Lane in Rutherford. Well, I mused, better try it — it certainly won’t get any better. Usually I like to give old wines a full day or so standing up, to let the sediments slide to the bottom of the bottle. It was midday when I brought the Jaeger Merlot in from the cold, but it proved time enough for it to warm to room temperature. Many an old cork will crumble, so just before dinner I used the Ah-So cork puller to withdraw it, gently working the metal prongs downward on either side. The cork came out whole and amazingly sound, a moist dark-red stain near the end. It smelled of wine — a promising sign. I decanted over a flashlight, till the dark arrow of sediment appeared very near the end of the pour. A muddy film clung to one side of the bottle, but the wine in the carafe was a vibrant dark garnet. I gave it a swirl, poured out a glass and sniffed. Aromas of black fruits wafted forth — ripe plum, dark berries, a hint of licorice. I sipped. The taste was smooth but lively, flush with black fruit flavors, warm and rich in texture. I marveled at its vibrancy after all those years. It was not the least faded or tired, but balanced, complex and long in finish. I savored the wine with braised short ribs, relishing the layers of flavor that each sip revealed. I thought how only time can make that happen, and how much wine lovers miss in sheer enjoyment by drinking good reds too young. It’s a sin against nature to drink a wine before its time, before it has time to fulfill its promise. Like Cain killing Abel in the flower of his youth. I drank half the wine that night and funneled the rest into a clean half-bottle, filling it to the rim so no more air would get in and sealing it with a screw cap. The next night, to my surprise (though I don’t know why), it was even better. Still flush with fruit but even smoother, going down like silk. The leftover short ribs were better, too.


How to Age Reds Red wines do marvelous things as they rest quietly for a period of time — a minimum of 8-10 years for fine Cabernet Sauvignon, and 5-8 years for Merlot, Pinot Noir or Syrah (also Chianti Riserva and Rioja Reserva). And they can often go much longer. T I PS

F OR

S TOR I N G

- Store wines on their side, so the cork stays moist. - Choose a spot free of vibration, heat or light, such as inside a cabinet or at the bottom of a closet — not in the kitchen or on top of the refrigerator. - Ideal cellar temperature is 53°F, but wine will do OK at a steady 65-68°F. G OOD

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Cabernets/Meritage Blends: Jordan 2015 Grgich Hills 2015 Symmetry 2015 Dry Creek “The Mariner” 2015 Merlot, Pinot Noir, Syrah, Malbec: Swanson Merlot 2016 Pahlmeyer Merlot 2015 Cakebread Merlot 2014 Adelsheim Pinot Noir 2017 Roco “The Stalker” Pinot Noir Gary Farrell Pinot Noir 2016 Domaine Drouhin Pinot Noir 2015 Bedrock North Coast Syrah 2015 Giles Robin Croze-Hermitage Syrah 2017 Corazon del Sol Malbec 2015 *These wines should be available in Mississippi. If your local store doesn't have what you're looking for on the shelf, ask for it to be ordered from elsewhere in the state. D ECA N T

YOU R

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Decanting can enhance the flavor of young wines and help to remove the sediment often found in aged reds. Read Barbara Ensrud’s tips for decanting at bewinewise.com.

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mountain every Climb FROM RADIATION TO RAINIER, AN OXFORD BREAST CANCER SURVIVOR EMBRACES THE JOURNEY. WR IT TE N BY C A I T LY N CL EG G

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CONTRIBUTED PHOTOS COURTESY OF BETH BOWERS

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JOE WORTHEM

F

or Beth Bowers, the peak of Washington’s Mount Rainier was a lofty goal. The 60-year-old Oxford resident decided to take on the climb as a way of underscoring her victory over cancer. Ultimately, a storm cost her the chance to summit last July, but the trip gave her a new perspective on how far she’d already come. “I was disappointed, but (after that) I felt like I could do anything,” Bowers said. “It made me stop and realize: It was the journey, not the summit, that mattered.” When she decided to make the climb, Bowers was five years out from her battle with breast cancer. “You’ll be tired for a few weeks,” is what many people told her about radiation treatment. But for Bowers, a few weeks turned into months, which turned into years. Despite being an avid cyclist and runner, she just couldn’t seem to get over the hump. “The radiation knocked me down,” Bowers said. “I felt like my body was working against me. Here I was, a healthy, active person who gets teased for eating a salad at lunch every day. And then this thing comes out of nowhere and stops me.” Bowers decided she needed to do something epic to get over the weakness, both physical and psychological, that the radiation had left her with. A longtime Seattle resident, she had climbed Mount Rainier nearly 30 years before, when she was 32. She remembered the feeling


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of wanting to stop at Disappointment Cleaver, the “easiest” route to the summit — and the mental fortitude it took to keep going. She knew it would take months of intense training to be ready to climb. And she knew this goal was exactly what she needed to get stronger. So, in September 2018, with her 60th birthday looming, Bowers booked her trip with Rainier Mountaineering Inc. and wondered where to begin to prepare for the climb. Bowers is the director of clinical education for respiratory therapy at Itawamba Community College’s Tupelo campus. There, she found help from one of her students, whose husband, Adam Holt, was a personal trainer. When Bowers approached him with her monumental goal, he was thrilled to help. Bowers began training 10 months before the scheduled climb. Three days a week she would wake up at 4:20 a.m. and drive to Tupelo to train with Holt. Her training started slowly, with sessions lasting half an hour. Gradually the sessions got longer and more frequent, eventually building up to hour-long sessions, five days a week. When Bowers wasn’t working with Holt, she was trail running with her dog, Noah, to build strength in her ankles. As her strength grew, so did her determination. Bowers knew she had to push herself even further to prepare for the summit. Alongside Brady Bramlett, fellow Oxford-University United Methodist Church choir member and former Ole Miss pitcher, Bowers started climbing the stairs in Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. “We climbed the stairs twice a week, every week, starting in April until she went to climb in July,” Bramlett said. “And most of the time she was ahead of me on those stairs.” Together, Bowers and Bramlett trudged up and down the 90 steps on each row. The climbing alone was grueling, but Bowers would

The group Beth Bowers attempted to summit Mount Rainier with included guides from Rainier Mountaineering Inc. and mountain climbers from all around the country.

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Beth Bowers attempted to summit Washington’s 14,411-foot Mount Rainier in July. Part of Bowers’ training for the climb included trail running with her dog, Noah, also pictured above.

also have to carry a 40-pound pack on her back — roughly 31% of her bodyweight — during the ascent. So, as with her strength training, she started small. Bowers filled her pack with 11 pounds of charcoal and kept pushing up and down. But inside, doubt crept in. “I said to myself ‘I don’t know if I can do this,’” Bowers said. “My hips were killing me. A 40-pound pack seemed so far out of my reach. I had to close my eyes and visualize the summit. I had to tell myself, scream at myself, whatever I had to do to make it to the top of those stairs.” Bowers kept at it. Over time, the pack felt lighter. She added more weight, a few pounds at a time. She added afternoon sessions to the morning ones. And after 10 exhausting months, she felt prepared for the ascent. Arriving in Seattle felt like coming home. Bowers reconnected with old friends and co-workers, who saw her to base camp. Then it was time to put everything she had been training for into practice. Bowers’ climbing team included eight fellow climbers and three guides. The guides, expert climbers with Rainer Mountaineering Inc., operated like a well-oiled machine. The climbers ranged from their

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early 20s into their 60s and hailed from all parts of the country: Colorado, Connecticut, Oregon and Mississippi. Among the hopeful summiteers were two father-daughter groups, a pair of brothers-inlaw, and two other women, with whom Bowers remains close friends. “If you asked me to pick eight other people to climb with, I’d pick the same people,” Bowers said. “By the time our trip was over, we were all laughing and getting along like we were best friends.” As their climb began, Bowers propelled herself with the same positive attitude that got her through both her radiation treatments and her strenuous training. With every step up the sharp, steep trail she envisioned herself making it to the summit. “Once I started the summit, I was climbing with confidence,” Bowers said. “I put myself in Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. All I had to do was put one foot in front of the other.” Overhead, though, a threat was brewing. Dark storm clouds were rolling in from the Pacific Ocean. Bowers started to get nervous. “By this time, I knew that the only thing that could stop me was the weather,” Bowers said. “It was frustrating.” By the time the team reached Camp Muir, at 10,000 feet, the


wind was shrieking across the rock face at 75 mph, and the rain was pouring down. The guides told the climbers to rest and wait out the storm inside a small bunker, hoping to set out again around midnight. Whether it was the howling winds, the pounding rain, or her nerves, Bowers couldn’t sleep. Midnight came and went without word from the guides. The team had lost their window. Bowers, after all her training, wasn’t going to make it to the summit. “That was the hardest part,” Bowers said. “But I had beaten cancer. I had gotten stronger. It made me realize all the good things that had been part of this journey.” Back at base camp, Bowers found her family and friends waiting for her. Although she wishes she could have made the summit, she said she wouldn’t change her experience. “We are the sum of our experiences,” Bowers said. “After going through cancer, radiation and all my training, I was never going to quit. I got to watch myself get stronger. It gave me more confidence.”

Top: To prepare for the climb, Bowers trained in Tupelo five days a week with personal trainer Adam Holt. Above: Twice a week, she also climbed the stairs in Vaught-Hemingway Stadium in Oxford with a weighted pack on her back alongside her training buddy, Brady Bramlett. DECEMBER 2019/JANUARY 2020 | INVITATION

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Ringing in the Holidays H A N D B E L L C H O I R S H E R A L D T H E H O L I D AY S E A S O N A N D R I N G I N WORSHIP SERVICES IN NORTH MISSISSIPPI YEAR-ROUND. WRITTEN BY SUSAN BALDANI

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PHOTOGRAPHED BY JOE WORTHEM

“Hark how the bells, Sweet silver bells, All seem to say, Throw cares away …” — “Carol of the Bells,” music by Mykola Leontovych, lyrics by Peter J. Wilhousky

P

erhaps you’ve heard them — from children’s school choirs to Carnegie Hall, the sweet, shimmering sound of handbells ringing in the holidays. Handbells have a long history, going back as far as the 5th century B.C. in China, and can be found all over the world and in nearly every culture. In England, they started as an alternative to tower bell ringing, which became prevalent in the 16th century. “The big cathedrals had bells in their towers which were rung by people pulling ropes connected to the bells to make them ring,” said Mary Poole, director of the handbell choir at Oxford University United Methodist Church. “They did not play tunes; just sequences of notes. They developed what is called ‘change ringing’: a


Oxford University United Methodist Church, Oxford

pattern of bells rung in a certain sequence.” Ringers had to practice, and residents living near church towers complained of the noise. In response, small bells were developed so that the ringers could practice indoors. Eventually larger sets of handbells were made. In the 1830s, English handbells were introduced to America, by the Peake Family Ringers, a musical troupe that performed all across the country, and in 1840 by P.T. Barnum, the famous American promoter and founder of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus. Reportedly, Barnum, on a tour in England, had a chance to hear the Lancashire Bell Ringers. He was so impressed by their talent that he believed they’d be a good fit in the U.S. He signed them to a contract and renamed them the Swiss Bell Ringers, though they were from England, not Switzerland. Ringing melodies and simple harmonies, known as “tune ringing,” peaked in the middle of the 19th century. In the 20th century, interest declined, and only after the end of World War II did it begin to grow in popularity once again. Today handbell choirs can be found in churches throughout the U.S., including right here in Mississippi. At many churches, handbells are not just used for one type

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of service. Each church can choose to ring them for a variety of reasons. The bells may be played on their own or accompanied by singers or other instruments. They also make an interesting addition to ministries. “Bells bring a different dimension of sound to our services,” said Poole. “We use various techniques in ringing to add special effects to the music. Handbell playing is very rewarding to the ringers and, we hope, exciting to the congregation.” With some individual bells selling for hundreds of dollars or more and sets costing upwards of $7,000, most ringers don’t own their own, so group practice is the only way to master a melody. It’s extremely important for every person in the choir to be in attendance at practices and performances. “Handbells call for a very committed group of people,” Poole said. “When someone is absent, it’s like playing a piano with a key missing.” Dave Cornelius, director of music and worship arts at First United Methodist Church in Corinth, agreed. “Handbell playing is the ultimate team sport,” Cornelius said. “If somebody isn’t there for practice, you know it. Folks become pretty close knit because they are so dependent musically on each other.” First United has had a handbell choir for more than 35 years, and today, its main choir has 13 regular players. Cornelius has also brought back a children’s handbell choir, which currently has 12 children from grades two through five. His goal is to have the handbell choir play at least once a month, especially during holiday services. The bells they use were donated to the church by the Droke and Hardin families in memory of loved ones. Cornelius went on to say that chimes are sometimes also used by church choirs. Unlike handbells, with their crisp tones, chimes give off a more rounded warm tone. Of varying lengths, chimes are small tubular pipes with openings in the sides and a clapper inside. The clappers are made out of materials such as wood, bone, or metal. Each handbell sounds a specific note, First United Methodist Church, Tupelo


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with overtones; the smaller bells have higher tones, and the larger the bell, the lower the tone. The handles are looped and rigid, and the clappers hinged with springs, for a clear sound after each strike. There are many bell-ringing techniques — ringers can change the tonal quality with a touch or a shake, or by striking the bells with dowels or mallets. Gloves protect both the bells and the ringers’ hands. “The handbells are keyed exactly like a piano, and so they have sharps and flats just like a piano,” Cornelius said. “Many handbell choirs can tend to be mechanical since music is mathematical, and everyone is trying to play their note on their portion of the beat in the measure. But, the really cool thing is to try to get some kind of motion and flow of a smooth melodic line and that’s when your handbell choir really starts getting proficient. That’s when they start getting artistic.” Cindy Mathis has been the handbell choir director at First Baptist Church in Corinth for 12 years now, and most of the group of 12 has stayed the same. Some have even been there since the bell choir was formed decades ago. “In my experience in our church, we have some people who are musicians, who can read every note on the page,” Mathis said. “But, we also have people who have learned to play the rhythm and have certain bells that they prefer to play. You don’t have to have the knowledge of every note on the staff to be able to play.” The bells at First Baptist were donated in 1982 by longtime member Ray Stennett, who loved the handbells and the sound they made during worship services. Continued on page 60

First United Methodist Church, Tupelo


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First Baptist Church, Corinth

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Continued from page 58 Beverly McAlilly has been director of music ministries at First United Methodist Church in Tupelo since 1984. “We also use our bells for call to worship,” McAlilly said. “On All Saints’ Mondays, as we light a candle for members of our congregation who have died, we also ring a bell. So, these bells are used in different ways in worship.” First United’s handbell choir was established in the mid-1970s. The choir currently has 13 adult members, plus four others, so they can rotate. The church also has a multigenerational beginner handbell choir comprised of adults and older children, as well as an elementary choir with children from grades one through six. “The bells have a different way of ministering to people,” McAlilly said. “It’s just another expression of people’s desire to glorify God through music.” First Baptist and First United Methodist churches in Corinth will be joining together at the historic Coliseum Civic Center for the annual Christmas concert at 7 p.m. Dec. 3. In addition to handbell ringing, the show will include youth and adult singers and instrumentalists. The handbells will open the show and also accompany the audience with the singing of “Silent Night” at the end of the show. “People really enjoy hearing the bells, especially at Christmas,” Mathis said.


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r. Rogers of television fame is known for telling his viewers, “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’” Steve Tybor is one of those “helpers” you can find during scary times. When floods, tornadoes, hurricanes and other disasters strike, he springs into action, looking for those in need of his help. Tybor is executive director and co-founder of Eight Days of Hope, a faith-based disaster relief ministry that focuses energy and resources on mobilizing volunteers and donations to help communities in the aftermath of disaster. Eight Days of Hope’s national headquarters are located in eastern Pontotoc County, not far from the Tupelo city limits. In May 2019 the organization dedicated a new building that includes administrative offices, a kitchen, a training center and a three-story, 60,000-squarefoot warehouse for holding supplies and equipment waiting to be deployed. The organization also has a northeast satellite location in Buffalo, New York, and in October opened a midwest satellite location in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. These satellite locations allow rapid response teams to mobilize

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A NORTH MISSISSIPPI DISASTER RELIEF MINISTRY IS REBUILDING LIVES, E I G H T D AY S AT A T I M E .

WRITTEN BY CLINT KIMBERLING PHOTOGRAPHED BY JOE WORTHEM


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and get to a disaster area much faster. Having supplies and volunteers ready to deploy at a moment’s notice makes a huge difference. “During and after the 2014 tornado in Tupelo, we found that ministry opportunities abound right after a disaster,” Tybor said. “That can be clearing debris, tarping a roof, or just giving someone a hug.” A native of Buffalo, New York, Tybor relocated to Tupelo in 1999 because of a job opportunity. But in 2005, after Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast, Tybor’s career path took a different turn. Tybor got a call from his father in New York, who told him, “Let’s go help someone down there. Get some friends together and find someone we can help.” Hoping to rally a few people beyond his limited network, Tybor asked American Family Radio to run a single spot asking for volunteers to share the workload. He ended up leading a group of 684 people that helped 84 families in Waveland and Bay St. Louis. Tybor describes the trip as a life-changing experience. Those simple instructions from his father launched a disaster response ministry that has helped thousands of families recover, and provided millions of hours of volunteer labor. What was meant to be a one-time trip was so successful and so fulfilling to everyone involved that it was repeated over a dozen times in the next 13 years. When hurricanes Rita, Irene, Isaac and Harvey struck the Gulf, and caused flooding in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and Nashville, Tennessee, Tybor rallied volunteers to help those in need. Eight Days of Hope has been featured in USA Today, on Fox News and The Weather Channel, and former Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour named it the top volunteer organization of the year in 2007. In 2014, Tybor was recognized for his tireless and invaluable work when he received the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis National Jefferson Award. The Jefferson Award is the nation’s highest honor for public and community service. Today, leading Eight Days of Hope is Tybor’s full-time job since leaving the building material industry in 2017. Tybor and his army of volunteers are standing by, ready to help whenever the need arises next. “We bring thousands and help where we can, for as long as we can,” Tybor said. “We want to love and help people when they have nowhere to turn.” The name Eight Days of Hope carries a lot of significance. Eight days is the amount of time volunteers commit to helping disaster victims. And Tybor Eight Days of Hope opened its national headquarters building, pictured here and on the previous pages, in May 2019. points out that in the Bible, the number The facility, which includes administrative offices, a training center and a 60,000-square-foot warehouse, eight signifies new beginnings. allows the organization to store supplies and equipment, and to train volunteers before they are deployed to disaster areas. Continued on page 66

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Continued from page 64 “We’re bringing fresh hope to people,” Tybor said. “Giving them a new beginning.” A substantial amount of preplanning and advance work takes place so that when volunteers descend on a site, they can hit the ground running and make the most of their time there. That means partnering with an existing community organization to identify families that need help, purchasing building materials, clearing permits, finding volunteer lodging and having meals planned and ready to serve. A typical volunteer day begins at 4 a.m. when the food team begins preparing to feed volunteers. Breakfast is served, followed by a short devotion. Then it’s time to go out and serve at designated sites. This may include anything from demolition tasks to hanging drywall or repairing a roof. Dinner is served at 5:30 p.m., followed by an evening devotion led by a local pastor. Then it’s time to get to bed and get ready to do it all over again. Volunteers sleep wherever there’s an empty space, including church gyms and campsites. The organization owns trucks that can supply water if it isn’t available. “We live simple lives for those eight days,” Tybor said. “Everyone recognizes that it’s all for a common good.” Admittedly, a week is not enough time for a family to recover from having their lives turned upside down. It’s a unique model for a relief organization, but Tybor describes their efforts as a steroid shot to a community in need. And there’s a unique secondary effect that the work has on volunteers. About half of them return to participate in the mission for at least a second time. “Not only are the families and homeowners who are on the receiving end of our charity getting a fresh start, but the volunteers are also changed forever,” Tybor said. “In turn, that allows the ministry to grow and continue.” Amy and Chas Kirby of Tupelo were Eight Days of Hope volunteers. They traveled to LaPlace, Louisiana, in 2013 to aid victims of Hurricane Isaac. The Kirbys were only able to stay for three days, but the experience made a lasting impression. “We didn’t want to leave,” Amy Kirby said. “And we came back with the sense that we could be doing more.” A year later, the Kirbys found themselves on the other side of the volunteer relationship when an F3 tornado touched down in north Mississippi. When the Kirbys’ insurance claim did not cover all the necessary home repairs they turned to Eight Days of Hope for help with replacing windows, doors and vinyl siding. “I remember there were people all over, everybody doing what they could,” Kirby said. “From picking up trash, to just handing out Popsicles — lending a hand however they could. For me, it was the first time I had experienced something I needed help recovering from. It’s a huge blessing what they did for us, and I felt the love of Christ through it.”

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Photos contributed by Eight Days of Hope show the organization’s volunteers in action.


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Gnome for the

holidays MINIATURE GNOME TABLEAUX BRING CHRISTMAS CHEER TO OXFORD’S SQUARE. WRITTEN BY GINNY McCARLEY PHOTOGRAPHED BY JIM HENDRIX

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est friends Deb Pittman and Angela Maloney and are self-proclaimed “Christmas nerds.” So, when they discovered tiny, homemade “fairygnome” scenes in downtown Greenwood, they couldn’t wait to re-create the idea in Oxford with a holiday twist. Maloney and Pittman had taken their kids to Greenwood for a night last December to eat dinner and enjoy the town’s decorations when they first noticed the miniature doors and dooryards in corners all around town. The Greenwood fairy-gnome doors are a permanent fixture of the town, but they are decorated with tiny wreaths, bells, Christmas trees and snow during the holiday season. “That’s where the idea was born,” Maloney said. “Deb said to

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me, ‘Let’s spread some Christmas cheer,’ so when we got back to Oxford, we bought mini gnomes and made scenes all around the Square.” The two friends, together with their five kids, bought gnomes, mini wreaths, brightly wrapped presents, sparkly snow and angel figures and created tiny tableaux that they tucked near storefronts and on ledges around the Square. Soon, news of the mini Christmas gnome tableaux spread on social media. “Everyone was taking pictures, tagging us, having their kids go to the Square to find them. It was just so much fun,” Maloney said. Initially, the women set out just five or six tableaux, but they were such a hit that they ended up creating more than a dozen. Friends flooded their Facebook pages with photos of their children posing next to the tiny gnomes and sent encouraging messages saying how happy the scenes were making them. They were so popular, shop owners and friends began suggesting spots for more. “If (the tableau) was visible from a storefront, we would ask the store owner, and every single person we asked was like, ‘Absolutely, go for it,’” Maloney said. “We even had store owners asking for


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KEEP A N EYE OUT FO R

them; they liked it too.� Though they look quite intricate, GNOM the scenes are simple to create. Maloney E SCEN ES AROUN D OXF and Pittman scoured craft supply stores ORD, TUPEL O, PON for gnomes, snowflakes and other tiny TOTOC AND C ORINT treasures, and hauled it all to the Square. H! Once there, they let their kids arrange the scenes, hot gluing pieces together when possible before sprinkling it all with a bit of fake snow. They tried to select spots that were protected from weather and out of the way of foot traffic, but still easily visible to anyone walking by. Miraculously, all except one survived the holiday season. This year the duo plans to ramp up the excitement, and Invitation Magazines is excited to be a part of their effort. Look around Oxford, Tupelo and Corinth for some special magazine-themed scenes, snap a pic and share it on social media with the hashtag #invitationholiday. Read more on page 18. And, turn to page 74 for a step-by-step tutorial on making your own tiny holiday scenes.

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make your own

I

nspired by Greenville’s “Gnome-fairies” last December, Angela Maloney and Deb Pittman created tiny Christmas scenes with their kids and placed them around the Oxford Square. When we spotted the charming miniature tableaux tucked into doorsteps and corners, we couldn’t wait to share them in this magazine’s feature story, “Gnome for the Holidays.” But we couldn’t stop there — it seemed like such fun that we decided to make some ourselves and spread the holiday cheer throughout north Mississippi. So we gathered supplies and invited Maloney and Pittman over to show us how. Look for the Invitation Magazines gnome holiday scenes in Corinth, Tupelo and Oxford. When you spot them, snap a photo and share on social media with the hashtag #invitationholiday. It’s fun and easy to make your own, with or without kids. Plan ahead and get supplies in springtime when craft, hobby and dollar stores are stocked with garden supplies. Some stores carry “gnome home” kits. Spray snow and other seasonal items are available around the holidays. You can build your tableaux at home on a tile or other sturdy base and place them later, but Maloney and Pittman insist that being outside is part of the fun. Don’t forget to go back and collect them after the holidays are over. Maloney and Pittman bag items from each scene to re-use the next season.

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Deb Pittman (left) and Angela Maloney

INVITATION | DECEMBER 2019/JANUARY 2020


Supplies Spray snow (or spray adhesive and styrofoam “snow” if using a base) Gnomes, little village buildings and accessories, Christmas trees, mini garland, wreaths, stars, bows, ornaments and gifts For a more permanent scene, use tiles from a building supply store as a base and glue down items with hot glue or other adhesive.

STEPS STEP 1 : Fix a toddy. “It’ll help you get through kids squabbling over which gnome they want,” Pittman said. STEP 2 : Choose items and decorate a tiny tree with garland, ornaments, etc. STEP 3 : Proceed to the build site. Always ask the shop owner’s permission before you build. “But everyone always says ‘yes,’” Maloney said. “Who wouldn’t want a gnome home?” STEP 4 : Spray snow on your outdoor build site. STEP 5 : Next, arrange buildings, trees, gifts and gnomes on the snow (or glue items to your base). STEP 6: Finish with more snow. STEP 7 : Take photos and share on social media with the hashtag #invitationholiday. DECEMBER 2019/JANUARY 2020 | INVITATION

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Party On!

NEW YEAR’S EVE CELEBRATIONS IN TUPELO AND OXFORD INCLUDE FUN FOR THE COMMUNITY AND A GALA FOR A CAUSE. WRITTEN BY RACHEL BURCHFIELD


CASAblanca Gala AT

TH E

P OWE R H O U S E

It was a complaint Erin Smith heard often: “There is never anything to do in Oxford on New Year’s Eve.” So she decided to change that — and to celebrate with a cause. Smith is the brains behind “CASAblanca: Change a Child’s Story,” a gala event Dec. 31 at the Powerhouse. From 7:30 p.m. until 1 a.m., revelers dressed in their finest cocktail attire can ring in the new year with dinner, casino games, dancing, a drawdown and a champagne toast at midnight, all benefiting Lafayette County CASA, a nonprofit that advocates for abused and neglected children in the courts and other settings. CASA, which stands for Court Appointed Special Advocates, is a national association; Smith is founding executive director of the local program. “We planned this event in order for people to have something fun to do while at the same time supporting a phenomenal nonprofit that advocates for those children that need the most support,” Smith said. “Instead of spending a bunch of money to go out of town, people can have just as much fun here, and they don’t have to travel, and they save money. It’s sure to be a new tradition in Oxford.” In addition to the revelry, the evening recognizes individuals who have played an important part in CASA in the last year, recruiting, training and supervising volunteer advocates, whose role is to speak up for the best interests of children who have been removed from

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their homes because of abuse and neglect and are now in foster care. “We help provide resources for the child and stay by their side until their case is closed to ensure they’re in a safe and permanent home,” Smith said. Admission to the event is $75 for a single ticket, $100 for a drawdown ticket, or $175 for both. Tickets can be purchased online at CASAoflafayettecounty.com. The drawdown will take place throughout the night with the winner of $5,000 announced at midnight. “We are going to do things a little different,” Smith said. “You don’t only have a chance at winning $5,000, but we will have other prizes throughout, so if your name is drawn earlier you may have the chance to win another great prize. The first person drawn out will also get to go back in.” Can’t attend? You can still buy a drawdown ticket for a chance to win $5,000. “It costs approximately $1,400 for us to provide a volunteer to a child for a year,” Smith said. “That means providing resources for that child: clothes, after-school care and basic need items — the list is endless. … By simply buying a ticket to attend, you are already changing (a child’s) story.” For more information, email lafayettecountycasa@gmail.com or call 662-832-4747. Continued on page 80


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IN

New Year’s Eve D O W N TO W N

Continued from page 78 Dec. 31 this year will usher in a new decade, and with that new decade, a New Year’s Eve tradition is being hatched in Tupelo. As part of Tupelo Mayor Jason Shelton’s vision for recreational events 365 days a year in the city, Tupelo is throwing a New Year’s Eve party downtown, complete with live music, a ball drop and fireworks. “Why leave town when the party is right here at home?” said Jennie Bradford-Curlee, public relations and international sales director for Tupelo. “What better way to celebrate the dawning of a new decade than with this new tradition of revelry in Tupelo. Tupelo’s New Year’s Eve Party is one more exciting event for citizens and visitors to enjoy.” The festivities begin long before midnight with ice skating at BancorpSouth Arena at 1 p.m. that afternoon and continuing until 9 p.m. Children’s activities start at 7 p.m , and at 8:15 p.m. the music

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TU P E L O

begins. DJ Keith de Soul Explosion will hit the Broadway Street stage at the intersection of Broadway Street and Main Street, followed by The Band U.S. Simultaneously, on the Fairpark stage located in front of Tupelo City Hall at 71 Troy St., G3 Show Band will open, followed by Black Jacket Symphony, onstage until a little past midnight. When the clock strikes midnight, 2020 arrives with a ball drop and fireworks. One lucky reveler will start the decade off with a new car, a Toyota Corolla XSE. The car giveaway costs $50 to enter, and it is part of the city’s celebration of Elvis Presley’s 85th birthday on Jan. 8, 2020. “Tupelo’s New Year’s Eve party is going to have something for everyone,” Bradford-Curlee said. “From multiple genres of music on two stages throughout the night and kids’ events early in the evening, to great food from local restaurants, all in a fun, secure environment. It will be a party you do not want to miss.” For more information, visit tupelo.net/newyear.


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BRUCE SPREAD

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BRUCE SPREAD

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The Beautiful Mysterious CONTRIBUTIONS FROM MISSISSIPPI ARTISTS, WRITERS, HISTORIANS AND LOCAL EXPERTS ILLUMINATE A NEW COLLECTION OF WILLIAM EGGLESTON PHOTOGRAPHS. WRITTEN BY SARAH HOOPER

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PHOTOGRAPHS PROVIDED BY © EGGLESTON ARTISTIC TRUST

COURTESY OF EGGLESTON ARTISTIC TRUST AND DAVID Z WIRNER

Untitled (Monmouth College, West Long Branch, New Jersey), 1982, signed by William Eggleston

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C

onsidered by many to be the father of color photography, William Eggleston was born in Memphis and grew up in Sumner. He studied at the University of Mississippi and at Vanderbilt, though he never completed a degree. He spent most of his adult life in and around Memphis, Oxford and the Delta, where he shot his most inspired and famous collections. His subject matter is often commonplace, even unremarkable. Yet his work has inspired writers and filmmakers from Donna Tartt to Sophia Coppola. His was the first collection of color photography shown in a major gallery, in 1976. The exhibition of 75 prints at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City received mixed reviews but solidified his prominence in the art world. It also elevated color photography as a medium. William Ferris, a native Mississippian, former chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities, and renowned folklore historian, is a close friend and admirer of Eggleston. “He is the most important figure in the world of photography today,” Ferris said. “He is an icon within the art world ... part of a bohemian culture. They were drawn to him like bees to a hive.” Clockwise from top left: Untitled (a home near Greenville, Mississippi), undated; Eggleston and Ferris met shortly after the 1976 exhibition, Untitled (Waterford, Mississippi), 1983; A new book features a collection of 55 when Ferris was visiting Memphis over the summer. It was the photos by William Eggleston.

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beginning of a friendship that would span the next four decades and continues today. “The Beautiful Mysterious: The Extraordinary Gaze of William Eggleston” is a collection of 55 photographs Ferris collected from Eggleston over the years. Some include handwritten notes; most were shot in the Delta and Memphis. Ferris donated his collection to the University of Mississippi Museum, where they were on exhibit from September 2016 to February 2017. Ann Abadie of Oxford is the editor of “The Beautiful Mysterious.” She is also co-founder of the Faulkner conference and the Center for Southern Studies, has edited more than 50 collections, and despite turning 80 recently, she has no plans to slow down. Abadie is friends with both Ferris and Eggleston. When the Friends of the Museum approached her about getting involved with a project on Eggleston, she didn’t hesitate. “He was born a genius,”Abadie said. “It was a torment for him in some ways.” It takes some maneuvering to extract oneself from Eggleston’s gaze. Staring into his void is like spending a moment too long too deep under water — silent, beautiful, breathless and maybe a little terrifying. In Eggleston’s nimble hands, it is possible to find stillness, but be sure: It balances on a precipice. The viewer is a voyeur. In each shot, it appears as if something just transpired, or is imminent, and even if you should, you cannot look away. Continued on page 90

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Top: Untitled (near Plains, Georgia), 1976. Above: William Eggleston in Memphis in 1989, photographed by Everett McCourt.


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Continued from page 88 Eggleston’s own life is a collection of stories and characters straight out of a novel. He counts among his friends the likes of Andy Warhol and musician Willie Ruff. By all accounts, he is practically a concert pianist and loves Bach and Buxtehude. He has books full of watercolors and has traveled the world. Contributors to the book include Megan Abbott, Michael Almereyda, Kris Belden-Adams, Maude Schuyler Clay, William Dunlap, W. Ralph Eubanks, William Ferris, Marti A. Funke, Lisa Howorth, Amanda Malloy, Richard McCabe, Emily Ballew Neff, Robert Saarnio and Anne Wilkes Tucker. The University of Mississippi Friends of the Museum supported the release of the book, which is available at the UM Museum, Square Books in Oxford and Reed’s Gum Tree Bookstore in Tupelo.

"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. " — FROM “LIVING PHILOSOPHIES” BY ALBERT EINSTEIN

Top: H.C. Varner Grocery, 1971. Above: Untitled (Monmouth College, West Long Branch, New Jersey), 1982.

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From top: Untitled (Memphis, Tennessee), 1962; Untitled (Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee), 1969; Untitled (Huntsville, Alabama), 1970.

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n y w d l Ba

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THANKSGIVING SERVICE T U P E L O

PHOTOGRAPHED BY LISA ROBERTS

A Thanksgiving service took place Nov. 12 at the Salvation Army’s Jim Ingram Red Shield Lodge. The event included a prelude by Chris Ekiss from the Orchard, and lunch provided by the Salvation Army, Community Outreach Committee and the City of Tupelo. 1

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1. Mont Waterer, Milah Boone and Cole Raden 2. Amiyah Lamarr, Trace Young and Chloe Phillips 3. Don Lewis with Ray and Whitney Morton and Jason Shelton 4. Jet Adams, Kensly McFarling, Sara Thorderson and Olivia Dickey 5. Pat Brown and Rheonna Wiuff 6. Richard Price and Jason Martin 7. John Knight and Phyllis Ewell 8. Jackie Haguewood and Sarah Young

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NIGHT FOR A HAND UP T U P E L O

PHOTOGRAPHED BY LISA ROBERTS

The Tupelo/Lee County Community Foundation hosted its third annual Night for a Hand Up Nov. 12 at BancorpSouth Conference Center. The event showcased 25 local nonprofit organizations who competed for over $15,000 in prize money for projects. View more photos at invitationmag.com.

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1. Tracie Lanphere and Marcus McCoy 2. Patricia Parker, Katina Holland, Chandra Pannell and Allye Schulz 3. Rashni Barath and Brittany Sanders 4. Tonya and Charles Moore 5. Juanita Floyd and Mike Mitchell 6. Kris Ivancic and Cheryl Henning

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HOLIDAY OPEN HOUSE C O R I N T H

PHOTOGRAPHED BY WHITNEY WORSHAM

Main Street Corinth hosted its annual Holiday Open House Nov. 9 at shops downtown and in the SoCo District. Guests enjoyed refreshments, holiday music and a visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus. View more photos at invitationmag.com.

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1. Amy and Allie Cornelius 2. Charlie Curtis and Tadd Feazell 3. Cassidy Morgan, Makayla Richardson, Kayleigh Bode, Hope Lambert and Alli Dupree 4. Robin Elliott, Hannah Brawner, Angela Avent and Katie Cooper 5. Angelyn Mitchell and Cheryl Hurley 6. Cassidy and Bella Winn 7. Kalin and Jacy Burcham

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HOLIDAY TREE FESTIVAL T U P E L O

PHOTOGRAPHED BY LISA ROBERTS

The annual Tupelo Women’s Club Holiday Tree Festival was held at Tupelo Country Club Nov. 12. The event included a silent auction of decorated trees and wreaths, an ornament grab, heavy hors d’oeuvres, a cash bar and live music by the band Massey Tate. 1

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1. Natalie Morton, Leigh Monroe and Jenny Lynn Boyd 2. Lauren Cox, Shannon Saylors and Diana Pittman 3. lden Pappas, Lane Baxter and Brittney Naylor 4. Abby and Teresa Gholston with Rebekah Wilson, Ashley Christian and Kenzie Bland 5. Lauren Wilkins, Courtney Finley, Michelle Powell, Mark Markle and Jennifer Stone 6. Drew and Kayla Clayton 7. Tracy Wolfe and Karl Utsurogi 8. Lacie and John Dorton 9. Frank and Jennifer Kessler

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662.823.6323 QUEENSREWARD.COM

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TASTE OF TUPELO T U P E L O

PHOTOGRAPHED BY LISA ROBERTS

Barnes Crossing Auto Group presented the 13th annual Taste of Tupelo Nov. 14 at BancorpSouth Arena. The Community Development Foundation expo featured over 100 businesses providing demonstrations, complimentary samples and information. 1

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1. C.J. Doss, Patrick Marvin, Carolyn Browness and Shand Watson 2. Uaral Hopkins, Ryan McCoy and Brittany Faris 3. Brittany Gray and Bev Crossen 4. Rachel Alford, Kim Wilson, Shirley Hendrix and Amy Thomas 5. Daniqua Esters and Bianca Joyner 6. Taylor McKinney and Britney Yarbrough 7. Modesty Miller and Chasidy Gilbert 8. Ashley and William Goins with Percy Moore

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“SEUSSICAL JR.” C O R I N T H

PHOTOGRAPHED BY WHITNEY WORSHAM

Corinth Theatre-Arts performed the musical “Seussical Jr.” Nov. 9 at Corinth Middle School Auditorium. The production was a partnership with LINK, an initiative that promotes healthy children and communities in Corinth and Alcorn County. 1

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1. Charlie Castile, Scarlet Swindle, Lucy Grace Steen and Selah Essary 2. Blakelon Mayes, Sterling Sims, Margo Richardson and Brantley Faulkner 3. Alli Ray Seago, Halle Faith and Hayden Scarbrough 4. Maris Richardson and Hallie-Kate Dierks 5. Ben Strickland, Braydon Cupples, Will Senf and David Soltz 6. Taylor Blythe and Roman Swindle 7. Lynsie Kate Burns and Leann Jones 8. Maris, Margo, Annie, Mia and Jason Richardson

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VE TERANS DAY CEREMONIES N O RT H E A S T

M I S S I S S I P P I

PHOTOGRAPHED BY LISA ROBERTS

Veterans Day Ceremonies were held Nov. 11 throughout northeast Mississippi to honor those who have served in all branches of the military. In Tupelo, American Legion Post 49 dedicated a room in memory of World War II veteran David “Son” Puckett. View more photos at invitationmag.com.

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1. Bill Mims and Roy Parker 2. Jerry McKee, David Puckett, Tony Ludt and Mike Pettigrew 3. Jason Shelton and John Weddle 4. Tyler, Barbara, Kerrie and Winky Weathers 5. Jim Cole, Phil Budinger and Drew Robertson 6. Pat Murphy, Ben Inman and John Nipp

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BALDWYN OPEN HOUSE BA L DW Y N

PHOTOGRAPHED BY LISA ROBERTS

Baldwyn Main Street Chamber hosted its annual downtown Christmas Open House Nov. 17. The family-friendly event featured caroling by Baldwyn school choirs, a visit from Mr. and Mrs. Claus, refreshments and carriage rides. 1

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1. Haley Snider, Laken Eaton and Halee Smith 2. Maggie Boren, Allison Roberts and Noelle Borden 3. Shelia Copeland, Phyllis Robinson, Harriet Riley and Robyn Gibson 4. Katie Crane and Paige Wood 5. Kalen Watson and Ben Carpenter 6. Tom Cox and Annie Martin 7. Daniel Mann and Scott Mitchell

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OUT & ABOUT VIEW MORE PHOTOS AT INVITATIONM AG.COM

C re at e Fou nd at io n A n nu a l Me e t i n g

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TAILGATE FOR PALMER OX F O R D

PHOTOGRAPHED BY NANCY MANROE

Palmer Home for Children hosted its fourth annual Tailgate for Palmer at the Manning Center. The football-themed event featured barbecue prepared by James Beard awardwinner Rodney Scott of Charleston, South Carolina, and a silent auction. 1

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1. Bill and Lynn Sloan with George and Wanda Johnston 2. Brad and Holly Armstrong with Tracey and Scottie Smithey 3. Paul and Pam Walton with Kitty Cox and Victoria Holliday and Karen and Hugh Lee 4. Susan and Tom Meredith with June and Duke Goza 5. Sarah Hollis and Drake Bassett 6. Chris and Ashlan Glaze 7. Allyson and Peg Best 8. Daniel and Heather Lenard

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THE ONE NIGHT STAND ART SHOW OX F O R D

PHOTOGRAPHED BY MEGAN WOLFE

The 13th annual One Night Stand Art Show took place Oct. 26 at the Ole Miss Motel. The event featured 15 different artists in motel room galleries, food from Smoke Shop Oxford and The Oxford Creamery, and beverages from Jackson Beer Company. 1

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1. Jessica Richardson, Madeline Ott and Martin Love 2. Brennan Bolls, Jenner Jordan, Lo Magee, Quinn Chandler and Elizabeth Mays 3. Courtney McAlexander with Andrew and Dana Faggert 4. Ian Skinner, Kristin Conwill and Travis Turner 5. Mark and Lauren Beyers with Elizabeth and Mac Monteith 6. Sarah Blackburn and Andrew Bryant 7. Sarah Hughey and Taariq David 8. Wesley Webb and Katherine Sharp 9. Neema Loy and Nadia Alexis 10. Erin and Tom Kirkpatrick 11. Bill Warren and Pati D’Amico 12. Kathy and Ginny Davis

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WOMEN OF DISTINCTION OX F O R D

PHOTOGRAPHED BY VICKI SNEED

Girl Scouts Heart of the South hosted its annual Women of Distinction award luncheon Nov. 6 at First Baptist Church. The keynote speaker was the Rev. Dr. Ethel Young Scurlock, and the award recipient was Ashley Wilkinson. View more photos at invitationoxford.com.

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1. Kent and David McGee 2. Marcia Cole, Kathy Goff-Brummett, Premalatha Balachandran and Karthikeyan Rathinavelu 3. Ashley Wilkinson 4. Elaine and Ike Sayle with Jenny Rayner 5. Lauren Byers, Julie Yoste and Katie Naron 6. Mary Donnelly Haskell, Ethel Scurlock and Suzanne Helveston

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MONSTER’S BALL OX F O R D

PHOTOGRAPHED BY NANCY MANROE

Monster’s Ball took place Oct. 24 at the Diamond Club at Swayze Field to benefit Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital. The Halloween-themed costume party featured food, cocktails and music by DJ Gordo. View more photos at invitationoxford.com.

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1. Maggie Miller and Andy Miller with Eve Barrett 2. Larry Britt and E.O. Oliver 3. Greg Gowen and Drew Beher 4. Steven Kilgore, Andi Elliot and Marjorie Britt 5. David and Connie Pierce 6. Reed and Ryan Toms 7. Kay Carlton and Pam Barkley

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Committed to Excellence Dan Finan, Realtor Ole Miss’15 MBA

CELL: 601.917.5429 wdfinan@hotmail.com www.resideoxford.com OFFICE: 662.234.5621

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BUDDY WALK OX F O R D

PHOTOGRAPHED BY MEGAN WOLFE

The sixth annual Buddy Walk took place Oct. 13 at the Armory Pavilion in Oxford. The fundraiser was sponsored by 21 United of Mississippi and included a photo booth, food and children’s activities. 1

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1. Jeff Taylor, Larry McKinney, Kenny Tidwell and Eddie Mounce 2. Pat Inmon, Donna Palmertree and Alice Camp 3. Talon, Sydney Grace and Mark Ottens 4. Emily Smith, Kate Spiers, Mary Collins West, Hailey Hagemann and Blake Adams 5. Mary Cook, Kate Cook-Riley, Amanda Traylor and Katie Brewer 6. Lynn Sloan and Victoria Holladay 7. “Coco,” Michael and Cindi Savage with Lucy Thompson 8. Sariyah, Rachel and Alex Coleman 9. Sage Nichols and Josie Hayden with “Rapunzel” 10. Hannah Bollinger with Ivy and Ryan Gibson 11. Susan Dempsey, Cheryl Eber and Cooper Narron 12. Suzan Miller with “Waylan” and J.J. Collins

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REGENTS FALL FESTIVAL OX F O R D

PHOTOGRAPHED BY JESSICA RICHARDSON

Regents School of Oxford held its annual Fall Festival Oct. 25. The family-friendly event included a climbing wall, games, refreshments and a dunking booth.

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1. Maddy Mazzaferro and Neil Stewart 2. Kevin Coker and Kette Dornbusche 3. Ronnie Hamilton, Eliana Cummins and Brooke Smith 4. William, Kate Carson and Margarete Anne Alias 5. Morgan and Marcus Fondren with Ashley Campbell 6. Isla and Kate Cortes 7. Michelle Sneed and Jill Bell 8. Audrey and Lauren Yow 9. Emily Rikard and Rae Allen

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GENIUS TRIVIA NIGHT OX F O R D

PHOTOGRAPHED BY MEGAN WOLFE

The Lafayette County Literacy Council hosted its annual Genius Trivia Night Oct. 22 at the Blind Pig. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Dolly Parton Imagination Library Program for children from birth to age 5. 1

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1. Brian and Leigh Carole Mullins with Sarah Siebert and Alex Sanders 2. Laura Lehner, Tyler Moore, Blake Hale and Milli Haggard 3. Mitch Wilder and Jesse Bassett 4. Jake Jenkins and Catherine Robinson 5. Josh and Diana Cissell 6. Kristi and Gates Allen 7. John McClure and Laura Ivins with Whitney and Matt Turner 8. Leslie Franks and Vivian Courser

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GREAT 38 RACE OX F O R D

PHOTOGRAPHED BY NANCY MANROE

The Great 38 Race Weekend took place Oct. 26-27 on the campus of the University of Mississippi. The event, presented by Ole Miss Athletics, included 5K, 8-mile and halfmarathon races with proceeds benefiting the Chucky Mullins Endowment Fund. 1

View more photos at invitationoxford.com.

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1. Alexandria White and Emory Elzie White 2. Leigh Christian, Corey Martin, Bev Thompson and Ella Thompson 3. Kevin Christian, Leigh Christian, Megan Garner and Andrew Feeley 4. Ryan Vanhoy, Michelle Chewens, Walk McKean and Lewis Vazquez 5. Anne, Patricia, Lewis and Lewis Vazquez 6. Tonya and Alison Stephenson 7. Michael Camponova and Teresa Vagland 8. Elsie Okoye and Barbara Adaikpoh 9. Luke and Cory Bowles

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OLE MISS QUARTERBACK CLUB OX F O R D

PHOTOGRAPHED BY MEGAN WOLFE

The Ole Miss Quarterback Club hosted a meeting Nov. 7 at the Library Sports Bar that featured two special guests, head football coach Matt Luke and recruiting coordinator Tyler Sisley. 1

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1. Chad Posey with Charles and Kandy Michell 2. Burton, Harper, Jackson and Angie Doss 3. Lee Meek, Don Martin and Stan Pielak 4. Sandra and Troy Hardin 5. Bo and Bob Weatherly with Edward Hill 6. Claire and Larry Hardy 7. Ted Nerren and Brian Mullins

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OUT & ABOUT VIEW MORE PHOTOS AT INVITATIONOXFORD.COM

Z e t a P h i B e t a D e but a nt e Pa ge a nt

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K i m Pe r r y Me mo r i a l S c hol a r sh i p Re c e p t io n

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G o rd o n S c ho ol Re u n io n

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R ay mo nd Ja me s G ra nd O p e n i n g

5 1. Tamara Webb and Kimberly Taylor 2. Asacia Moore and Dae Dae Gross 3. Holly Abel and Whitney Byars 4. Corey Alger, Mark Spring and Robert Perry 5. Gordon School alumni 6. Liz Rousseau, Lindsay Reid, Chuck Sherman, John Sparks and Lisa Williams 7. Joseph Stinchcomb and John Spreafico 8. John T. Edge and Mark Boutwell 9. Sheila Howard-Baker, Sarah Baker and Monique Davis 10. Mabel Pettis and family

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OUT & ABOUT L a s t C a l l B o ok Re a d i n g

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FE A ST

S E R V E A F E S T I V E D I N N E R W I T H T R A D I T I O N A L T R I M M I N G S F O R A M E M O R A B L E H O L I D AY G AT H E R I N G . RECIPES CONTRIBUTED BY INVITATION M AGA ZINES STAFF

F

or a classic holiday feast, a prime rib roast with Yorkshire pudding can’t be beat. A perfectly cooked prime rib roast is an elegant main dish that’s easy to prepare with the recipe below. Yorkshire pudding was traditionally served as an appetizer, but it’s delicious alongside the roast. More of a popover than a pudding, you can bake it in a rectangular pan and cut it into squares, or in a popover or muffin pan for individual servings. Resting the batter before baking may help the pudding rise higher, but if you’re in a hurry, you can skip that step. No matter how you prepare it, be sure to serve it piping hot, with au jus from the roast spooned over the top. Turn to page 136 for the recipe.

PRIME RIB

roast

SER V ES 6-8 PEO PL E

One 8-pound bone-in prime rib roast 1 yellow onion, quartered 1 green bell pepper, quartered 4 celery stalks, cut into thirds 4 carrots, cut into thirds

1 tablespoon kosher salt 2 tablespoons black pepper 1 tablespoon garlic powder or more to taste 2 tablespoons dried oregano 1 cup Worcestershire sauce

Heat oven to 325°F-350°F.

loosely by tenting with aluminum foil, and roast until desired degree of doneness (approximately 21/2 to 3 hours).

Place vegetables in bottom of a large roasting pan. Set meat on top of vegetables so it doesn’t touch bottom of the pan. Combine salt, pepper, garlic powder, oregano and Worcestershire sauce, and rub all over the meat. Add water to the pan until it touches the bottom edge of the meat. Insert a meat thermometer 1/2 way down into the center of the meat. Cover

Remove roast when the internal temperature reaches 120°F to 125°F for medium-rare. (Roast will continue to cook and the temperature will rise while resting, so be careful not to overcook.) Let roast rest in pan covered with foil for 5 minutes before slicing and serving.

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continued

pudding

M A K E S 6-1 2 S E R V I N G S

½ cup all-purpose flour ½ teaspoon salt 1/3 cup milk

¼ cup cold water 2 eggs, lightly beaten 3 tablespoons melted roast beef drippings TO M AKE THE BAT TER

Stir together flour and salt in a bowl. Add milk, a little at a time, beating at medium speed with an electric mixer or whisking by hand until smooth.

Add water and eggs, and beat until bubbly. Cover loosely and allow to stand in a cool place for up to 30 minutes.

TO BAKE THE PUDDING*

*Do not open the oven while baking. Heat oven to 500°F. Pour beef drippings into a 9-by-13-inch baking pan or spoon into cups of popover or muffin pan, and heat in oven about 2 minutes. While the pan is heating, beat the batter until bubbles reappear. If using a baking pan, pour batter into it, and bake

10 minutes. Reduce heat to 450°F, and bake another 12-15 minutes or until browned and crisp. Cut into squares. If using popover or muffin pan, pour batter into cups, and bake 8 minutes, reduce heat to 400°F and bake another 8-10 minutes or until risen, crisp and brown. Serve immediately, with au jus from the pan spooned over the top.

FOR SUGGESTED RED WINE PAIRINGS TO GO WITH YOUR H O L I D AY M E A L , VISIT THE

FOOD BLOG

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