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FEBRUARY 2018

•NEW GAME IN TOWN

•Q&A: “SUMMER OF 1969” •NONPROFIT BRINGS HOPE


NO MATTER

WHAT. NO MATTER

WHEN.

Your Local Emergency Medicine Physicians

ReliasHealthcare.com


FEBRUARY 2018

14

ON THE COVER Warm up with a hot coffee from Crave, which is expanding with new locations and pop-ups in the park. Flip to page 8 to learn more. photographed by Joe Worthem

IN EVERY ISSUE 4

Letter From the Publisher

6

Calendar

8

Shoutouts

10

Community Corner

12

In Season

44

Out and About

48

Recipe

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FEATURES

EVENTS

14 In a Pickle

22

Hope for the Holidays

Martin Herman’s love for a unique game inspired him to start a pickleball league for local enthusiasts.

24

Ole Miss Cheer Showcase

26

NEWMS Luncheon

28

Battle of the Bands

30

Junior Cotillion Holly Ball

32

North MS Symphony Orchestra

34

Disney on Ice

20 Worthwhile Work

36

Pied Piper Christmas Shows

Talbot House’s transitional living program and new bakery offer hope and support to women recovering from addiction.

38

Tupelo Christmas Parade

40

Junior Auxiliary Luncheon

42

Alpha Kappa Alpha Cotillion

18 Shared Story Juanita Gambrell Floyd’s mother’s lessons about accepting and loving one another have been memorialized in a children’s book.


8

26

34

February 2018 | INVITATION TUPELO

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THE PUBLISHER

O

ver the Christmas holidays I traveled to my hometown of Pocahontas, Arkansas, for a wedding and to visit with longtime family friends. I left there when I was 18, and a few years later my parents divorced and both moved away. Therefore, it’s a special treat for me to travel back home. During that trip, I realized I truly love that town. I love so many of the people there, I love the historic courthouse where the wedding was held, and I love all the Christmas lights around the Square on many of the homes. Most of all, I loved sharing my feelings for Pocahontas with my daughter, who is 6, and remembering so many wonderful times and people with my mom, who is 66. Sometimes, we need to be reminded that love — especially the love we share with friends and family — is what holds us together. And what better time to be reminded than Valentine’s Day? So, this month, we are celebrating all kinds of things, people and places we love. On page 14, you’ll meet Martin Herman, who moved to Tupelo in 2015 and began sharing pickleball, a unique sport he loves to play, with others. You’ll also learn about two nonprofit organizations, Talbot House Bakery on page 20 and Showers of Love on page 10, that are both run by people on a mission to love and serve their neighbors.   If you have special plans for hitting the town (or staying in) for Valentine’s Day, check out Tupelo native Anne Lampkin’s fashion advice on page 12. Invitation Magazines artist and Pontotoc native Zach Fields created the original illustrations that accompany it. We hope you enjoy this magazine, and we’ll see you back here in March. 

RACHEL M. WEST, PUBLISHER

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Clockwise from top: The sport of pickleball is gaining popularity in Tupelo; a Talbot House baker shares a special family brownie recipe; and Kecia Crawford is part of a team serving the local homeless population through Showers of Love.


publishers

Phil and Rachel West

editorial

EDITOR IN CHIEF Emily Welly CONTRIBUTING EDITOR Allison Estes EVENTS EDITOR Mary Moreton STAFF WRITER Melanie Crownover SOCIAL MEDIA COORDINATOR Katherine Henson COPY EDITOR Kate Johnson

advertising

ADVERTISING CONSULTANTS Alise M. Emerson Leigh Lowery Lynn McElreath Stacey Raper Moni Simpson Whitney Worsham ADVERTISING DESIGNERS Zach Fields Becca Pepper

art

CREATIVE DIRECTOR Hallie Thomas STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Joe Worthem CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Amanda Cody Elizabeth Roberts Anthony Teague

production

PRODUCTION DIRECTOR Emily Suber

office

BUSINESS MANAGER Hollie Hilliard DISTRIBUTION Donald Courtney Brian Hilliard MAIN OFFICE 662-234-4008 ADVERTISING INFORMATION ads@invitationtupelo.com

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

PLEASE RECYCLE THIS MAGAZINE

February 2018 | INVITATION TUPELO

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calendar

FEBRUARY/MARCH 2018 Now through 2/26 Hot Rods & Street Rods Tupelo Automobile Museum’s current exhibit features custom street rods and hot rods. $10 adults; $5 children 5-12. Open 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday-Saturday; noon-4:30 p.m. Sunday. tupeloautomuseum.com

2/17

3/1-21

Country music legend Ronnie McDowell and special guest Chris McDaniel perform “An American Trilogy on Canvas in Concert” at the Elvis Presley Birthplace. A portion of proceeds from ticket sales will benefit Regional Rehab, an Elvis Presley Fan Club charity. $50 VIP tickets; $25 general admission. Doors open at 5 p.m.; concert begins at 6 p.m. For tickets, call 662-841-1245.

Oren Dunn City Museum celebrates Women’s History Month with an exhibit highlighting the accomplishments of local women who have forged significant change in Tupelo. Admission $4 adults; $3 seniors; $2 children 4-12; veterans free with military ID. Open weekdays 9 a.m.-5 p.m. 662-841-6438

Concert at the Birthplace

“Tupelo Women-Tupelo Strong”

2/23

Story Time at Oren Dunn Preschool children and their families are invited to learn about city history during story time, followed by a short activity at Oren Dunn City Museum. Multiple times: 9-10 a.m.; 11 a.m.-noon; 1-2 p.m. Donations appreciated. 662-841-6438

2/10

Reading of “Summer of 1969” In celebration of Black History Month, Oren Dunn City Museum hosts Juanita Floyd to read the book she recently co-authored and discuss growing up in Tupelo during integration. Free admission; donations appreciated. Read more about the book on page 18. 2 p.m. 662-841-6438

3/3

“The Firebird”

2/23-25

World of Customs Auto Show

TCT Off Broadway stages the off-Broadway hit musical and movie. Tickets $20 adults; $10 students. 7:30 p.m., 213 E. Franklin St. tct.ms

An indoor car show at Tupelo Furniture Market features tools and parts vendors, children’s activities and special guests including Von Hot Rod and the “Smokey and the Bandit” Trans Am. 5-10 p.m. Friday; 9 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday. worldofcustoms.com

2/16-18

2/24

2/15-17

“The Last Five Years”

“All Shook Up Young@Part” Pied Piper Players presents a musical featuring the songs of Elvis Presley. Tickets $7 adults; $5 students. 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 2 p.m. Sunday, Church Street Elementary School. facebook.com/piedpipertupelo

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NMSO Concert North Mississippi Symphony Orchestra presents “Triumph: Schumann & Dvorak,” featuring pianist Cecile Licad. Tickets $10$30. 7:30 p.m., Link Centre. nmsymphony.com

Civic Ballet performs the magical and enchanting ballet with music by Russian composer Igor Stravinsky. Tickets $20 adults; $15 seniors; $10 students age 12 and under. 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., Performing Arts Center at Tupelo High School. For tickets and to learn more about Civic Ballet, a pre-professional ballet company under the artistic direction of Jan Dijkwel, visit civicballet.com

3/8-10

“Blithe Spirit” Tupelo Community Theatre presents a hit comedy by Noel Coward about a cantankerous novelist lovingly haunted by his two late wives. Tickets $20 adults; $10 students. 7:30 p.m., the Lyric Theatre. tct.ms


3/14

Empty Bowls The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary hosts the 20th annual Empty Bowls Luncheon. Local restaurants serve soup in ceramic bowls crafted by local artisans. Pottery and baked goods will also be sold during the event. Tickets $15; $10 child’s ticket (does not include bowl). 10:30 a.m., Tupelo Furniture Market Building 5. brownpapertickets.com/event/3231625

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LIVE AT BANCORPSOUTH bcsarena.com

If Not Call

2/10

Brantley Gilbert Concert Tickets $35-$60. 7 p.m.

2/22

Winter Jam Tickets $15. 7 p.m.

BEFORE

AFTER

2/24

Tank with Sir Charles Jones and Pleasure P Tickets $32-$70. 8 p.m.

3/2 and 3/3

Monster Jam Monster Trucks Tickets $18-$38. 7 p.m. Friday; 1 and 7 p.m. Saturday

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PHOTOGRAPHED BY JOE WORTHEM

shoutouts

FEBRUARY/MARCH 2018 On the Fast Track Lawhon Elementary School student Maison Dunn is one of the fastest kids in the country. The fifth-grader’s name regularly appears in the top 10 on the gym wall where his physical education teacher posts results from the quartermile run test. But last November, Dunn made news with a 1.28-minute time that ranked him fastest in the whole school and second in the nation by Project Fit America, a program that allows participating schools to track their students’ quarter-mile times and other fitness data against those of others around the country. “I was exhausted by the third time around, but I kept going,” Maison said of his run. “I knew it must be good because I was in front of everyone and then I’d be behind them and in front again.” Athleticism runs in his family. “My mom played volleyball and basketball in high school, and my dad played basketball. All my sisters played basketball, and my brother played football,” he said. He gets most of his practice running while playing football for the Lee County Bears and playing basketball or racing his cousins at home. “The first time I got to run on a real track was at Tupelo High School on a field trip,” Maison said. That visit and his recent record-setting run have him considering a new sport. “I’m thinking about doing crosscountry at middle school and in high school,” he said.

I Love Mississippi

Winter Warm Up

Poet Patricia Neely Dorsey’s mission in life is to get others to love Mississippi as much as she does. Now she’s reaching an even wider audience with her inspiring words through a new line of Southern Belle T-shirts that feature lines from Dorsey’s recently published third book of poems. “The people who wear them are sharing the great things I see in this place even if they never pick up a book of my poetry,” she said. “In my poems, you see that love for the family and community connections here, the core values, the beautiful landscape and the country living.” This is not the first time Dorsey’s poetry has made news statewide. In 2015, Gov. Phil Bryant named her an official goodwill ambassador to the state because of her writing.

Does chilly weather have you craving a hot drink? Now there are more ways to experience Crave, the local establishment that provided the drink pictured on our cover. The owners, Tiffany and Brad Franks, are expanding into the space next door to their business to open Crave Community. The location will have a smoothie bar that offers healthy treats, and it will serve as overflow space for the Crave crowd. It can also be booked for private meetings and even as an event space for “micro-weddings.” The expansion comes shortly after the Franks launched Fire and Ice, two new coffee shops located in former shaved-ice stands in Ballard and Veterans parks. The Ballard Park location, which was the site of spontaneous pop-ups this winter, will begin selling coffee regularly on Friday and Saturday mornings in the early spring. The Franks also plan to start up Foodie Fridays, one-night events in which they’ll partner with a local restaurant to sell food alongside Crave’s signature drinks. The Veterans Park location, which will sell cold drinks and desserts, will open when the weather warms up.

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SHOWERS OF LOVE written by Melanie Crownover photographed by Joe Worthem

W

hen Charles and Tonya Moore (pictured above left) remodeled a former halfway house into Life Culture Ministries a year ago, they found more than a site for their church; they found purpose. “I walked into the area back there, where the three shower stalls and laundry hookups are, and thought, ‘God can use this for something big,’ ” Tonya said. “It was no coincidence that a friend introduced me to Kecia Crawford at our women’s conference in July.” Crawford (pictured above right in blue), an administrative coordinator for Lifecore Health Group, spoke at the event and had experience working with homeless people in her native state of South Dakota. The trio began researching available local resources for the homeless. They participated in the local Homeless Task Force and talked with the city planner and mayor to figure out the best way they could serve. Showers of Love began four months later. The project enables area homeless to use the church facilities to shower and wash their clothes. The group provides hygiene and laundering necessities, such as towels, washcloths,

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soap, shampoo, deodorant, toothpaste and toothbrushes, along with laundry detergent, for participants, and they offer food, water and donated clothing to those who want it. Crawford can also offer homeless visitors additional information on local resources to assist with needs such as healthcare, clothing and jobs. “I like to think of myself as the middleman for resources,” Crawford said. “If they have medical needs, I get them to Tree of Life clinic. If they need counseling, I get them in touch with my connections at Lifecore. We work with a group out of Jackson that can help them with housing. There’s Saints Brew and Salvation Army here to help with food, clothes or a temporary place to sleep. If it’s a job [they’re looking for], we have a contact.” Showers of Love gets word out to the homeless community via flyers passed out by some of these organizations, as well as by going directly to places that homeless people frequent. “We knew there were homeless who needed help here, but we didn’t realize to what degree until we started doing this,” Charles

said. “We’ll go wherever we have to to let these people know that if they want to make their situation a little better, we’re here.” The Showers of Love facilities at 630 A and D Drive are open 7 a.m.-1 p.m. SaturdayMonday. The team is seeking volunteers and donations (see the list of needs below) to grow. For more information or to help, email tmmoore66@gmail.com or call 662-871-7267.

DONATIONS NEEDED (toiletries should be travel-sized): Bars of soap or body wash Shampoo and conditioner Deodorant Toothpaste and toothbrushes Body powder Hair brushes and combs Face and body towels Laundry detergent Bleach Dryer sheets Washing machine and dryer


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A PARTNERSHIP WITH TUPELO BLOGGERS

VALENTINE’S DAY STYLE fashion advice by Anne Lampkin illust rated by Zach Fields

E

xpress your personal style this Valentine’s Day, whether you’re meeting a friend for a casual lunch date, spending a swanky evening out with your significant other, or staying home for a fun night in with the kids. Whatever your plans are, these tips will help you dress the part.

Anne Lampkin is an English teacher at Northeast Mississippi Community College, a photographer, a fashion blogger and a self-described “accidental fashion expert.” Follow her at tupelobloggers.com or on Instagram @mannelamp.

LUNCH DATE For a lunch date, keep it classy but casual with jeans in your favorite fit. Girlfriend-cut jeans are a perfect choice as they’re not quite as body-hugging (or suffocating) as skinny jeans but also not as baggy or relaxed as a boyfriend fit. Pair this with a heeled bootie or Mary Jane-style shoe to keep from being too casual. Add a comfortable blush-pink top and red accessories, such as a trendy beret and tassel earrings or a classic leather handbag, to complete this stylish look. Guys, pair your nicest tailored jeans with a crisp white button-down shirt and coordinated belt and shoes or boots. Camel leather is a universal favorite, making it an easy go-to option for shoes and accessories. This casual but put-together look is sure to have your significant other swooning.

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EVENING OUT

PAJAMA PARTY

For a romantic evening out, stick with classic silhouettes in beautiful fabrics. Pair a silk camisole with a leather pencil skirt or trousers to create a strong yet feminine look. Finish this chic style with diamond stud earrings and a matching teardrop necklace; then, pull out your best stilettos or kitten heels for the occasion. This combination is just the right amount of sassy and classy. 

For a family night in with the kids, have everyone put on their most comfortable jeans or leggings. Then, outfit everyone in T-shirts or sweaters embellished with graphics (like colorful hearts) or slogans (like “Choose Love”) that reflect the holiday. If you’re staying in there’s no need for shoes, so instead pick up matching heart socks for the family to add a special touch to this memorable occasion. 

Guys, make sure you’re looking equally dapper in a dark, tailored suit. If you want to leave the jacket at home, wear a well-fitted vest instead. Pair this with a matching belt and shoes (black works best with a black or charcoal gray suit, but a navy suit can be paired with black or brown dress shoes). Finally, add cuff links and a nice watch for a handsome evening look.

February 2018 | INVITATION TUPELO

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Martin Herman’s love for a unique game inspired him to start a league for local enthusiasts. written by Melanie Crownover photographed by Joe Worthem

W

hen pickleball enthusiast Martin Herman moved to Tupelo from Florida in January 2015, he couldn’t find anyone to join him in playing his favorite sport. “It’s such a popular thing there that I was kind of surprised that no one had heard of it here,” he said. “Imagine a sport between PingPong and tennis with square paddles the size of a saucer and balls like reinforced Wiffle balls. Then take it to a badminton court. It sounds strange, but if you try [pickleball] once, you’ll probably be back.” Pickleball began in the 1960s during one family’s Washington vacation, when adults gathered a hodgepodge of equipment to entertain their children at a badminton court. Contrary to popular belief, the sport’s name has nothing to do with the shape of the ball in play. Instead, the moniker came when the originator’s wife compared the combination of sports in pickleball to a pickle boat, a vessel in the sport of rowing whose crew is composed of oarsmen chosen from leftovers of the other boats. Pickleball’s popularity has grown since the USA Pickleball Association started in 2005, moving from its American origins in the Northwest to the West and East Coasts and then spreading inward. Overseas acclaim followed as the International Federation of Pickleball began in 2015. Tournament play is available as close as Memphis or Birmingham, and other northeast Mississippi cities, including Oxford and Columbus, have active pickleball communities. Herman began a Meetup group online to invite people to try the game out in the Tupelo area, and his first pickleball recruit was coincidentally another Florida transplant.

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Martin Herman, pictured at left, started Tupelo’s pickleball league. Pickleball is an increasingly popular racquet sport that combines principles from Ping-Pong, tennis and badminton. The league, made up of players of all ages, meets to play twice a week in the First Baptist Church gym and in warm weather outside at Rob Leake Tennis Academy on Joyner Street.

“When I saw that listing, I’d never heard those two words put together before,” Darrell Hink said. “I just embraced it. It was us oneon-one wearing each other out for a while, but it’s really caught on. That’s a good thing because it’s much better to play in pairs.” Players volley the ball back and forth across the court, typically playing to 11 points. Only the serving side can score. There are about 15 players at the court now when Tupelo’s pickleball group meets at

the First Baptist Church gym, 5:30-8:30 p.m. Mondays and 7-9 a.m. Thursdays. In nice weather they take the game to an outdoor court at Rob Leake Tennis Academy on Joyner Street, which Tupelo Parks and Recreation permanently marked for pickleball play before winter. The players keep the competition fair and encourage mingling by insisting on team rotations, asking winning teams to split or sit out after two wins. “The beauty of this sport is its flexibility,”

Herman said. “There is a very shallow learning curve to get into the game, especially if you’ve ever played a racquet sport. The intensity depends on you. I’ve played seniors and elementary school kids, and I’ve had one person tell me they got in 15,000 steps on their Fitbit while playing. You don’t realize how much exercise you’re getting because of how much fun it is.” For information about playing, message the Tupelo Pickleball page on Facebook or email tupelopickleball@outlook.com. February 2018 | INVITATION TUPELO

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Shared Story Juanita Gambrell Floyd’s mother’s lessons about loving one another have been memorialized in a children’s book.

written by Melanie Crownover illust rated by Tracy Applewhite

Juanita Gambrell Floyd shares her experience as a student during integration in a new children’s book. Learn more about the book and co-author Sara Berry’s Integrity Time curriculum at integritytime.com.

For years,

as a guest speaker around the area, Juanita Gambrell Floyd has told the story of the summer before her secondgrade year. Now she and co-author Sara Berry share her experience in “Summer of 1969,” a children’s book with a powerful message.

Invitation Tupelo: What was the significance of that summer? Floyd: That was when my mama prepared me for enforced integration. Normally in the summer, she would play with me. Not that summer. She’d get me to sit down and read out of my satchel, and she would ask me my name. My given name. She wanted me to have a sense of identity.

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IT: Why was it important to your mother that you be prepared? Floyd: She’d seen at the town hall meetings that [some people] were not ready, and she knew their attitudes would trickle down to the kids. I was the only black girl in second grade at my new school. There were ugly names on the playground, and when they came I would say, “That’s not my name. My name is Cozett Juanita Gambrell.” When I tried to play with the other kids and they refused, I would take my satchel of books Mama had gotten permission from the teacher to send and read them. By the time we graduated, those same kids were voting for me as most likely to succeed and into class offices.


IT: How does this story apply to today? Floyd: A lot of people think we’ve gone beyond that, but if you read the news you see there are so many racial and social issues escalating. My mama taught me to hold on to who you are and love people no matter what. Love is the only way we’ll ever change this world.

IT: Why did you want to be involved in this book? berry: I read the speech she had given about that summer, and it moved me. It’s an inspiring story about friendship, unity, forgiveness and a mother’s wisdom. It was published as a part of my Integrity Time line for kids. It fits with the whole mission of those works to teach children about what is true and good and right.

IT: How did it turn into a children’s book? berry: After I read her speech, I was riding around to run errands and that story was running around my head in the form of a poem. I pulled over in the Lowe’s parking lot and wrote it down. The writing of the book was done like that, but it took about a year to complete the publishing process. Juanita wrote a beautiful letter to accompany the story in the back. This is a story our children need right now.

IT: What’s it like to have this story out there? Floyd: Girl, I cry now. My mother only had an eighth-grade education. She grew up in an era where she had to go in through the back door to clean. She would never have believed something she said would still be helping children today. It’s such a blessing.

IT: What is the Character Education Fund? Floyd: It’s a fund through CREATE started by Bernard Bean to help get this book into as many children’s hands as we can. People can make a donation, get a tax deduction and help pay for second-graders to get a copy at school. Pontotoc, Union and Lee counties have already had enough donations that every second-grader in those districts got a copy.

IT: Will it just be students in this area? berry: Our goal would be to have every second-grader in the state receive one, and move on to other states from there. There were already 400 donated to the inner-city schools in Memphis. February 2018 | INVITATION TUPELO

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Worthwhile Work

Talbot House’s transitional living program and new bakery offer hope and love to women recovering from addiction. written by Melanie Crownover photographed by Joe Worthem

Blue Springs native Mandy Roberson looks right at home in the commercial kitchen of Talbot House Bakery. Chatting cheerily with the other staff, she drizzles a pan of the store’s signature cinnamon rolls with glaze before displaying them for sale alongside the rows of blueberry lemon rolls, chocolate cobbler and sausage cream cheese rolls that draw customers to the register. For Roberson, this is what redemption feels like. Four months ago, no one would hire her. Just out of a rehabilitation facility, she had more fear than hope awaiting her at home. The mother of two had struggled for years with methamphetamine addiction. This time, she couldn’t face the fight alone. “It wasn’t my first time in rehab. I’d been in and out of jail,” she said. “I learned everything I needed to do to keep clean in rehab,

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but all I knew was that life. I had no support and didn’t want to fail again. So I called the one sober person I knew for help.” That friend connected her with Talbot House Sober Living for Women founder and director Becky Weatherford. The house, which opened in 2015 at the site of the former Gardner Simmons Home for Girls, is a safe place for women to transition back from the secluded, controlled environment of rehab into the real world. “I was a drunk for 25 years and in recovery nine, so I know how hard it is to find your way out,” Weatherford said. “When I worked as a rehab peer-support counselor, every day another woman would tell me she wasn’t ready to leave. Any man could walk out and pick from seven places in the state to continue getting their lives back together, but there were none

for women. This is a necessary step if you want to get sobriety right.” Talbot House residents stay as long as they need, attending outpatient rehab classes, counseling and support meetings and developing coping skills together. Although they come from all over the southeast, many women find jobs and attend local churches while here. Living together allows residents a chance to learn about building healthy relationships. They support each others’ recovery, provide constructive feedback when needed and celebrate every victory as inspiration. Stories of former residents, such as assistant house manager Heather Pope, also offer hope. “I don’t know where I would be without this place,” Pope said. “My family was done with me by the time I got here because all I cared about was heroin for so long. Now I have


Talbot House Bakery opened in November to help financially support Talbot House, a sober living facility for women. Residents work at least five hours per week at the bakery and have the option to pursue a food-service certificate. The bakery first sold Talbot House director Becky Weatherford’s special cinnamon rolls and has been expanding its offerings since opening.

trust with my parents again, I have my daughter back living with me and spent Christmas with both of my children. I don’t ask these women to do anything that I’m not living.” The house capacity is 10 residents, and seven of those spots are currently taken. All applicants must be 21 years old and have successfully completed treatment at a rehabilitation facility. Many times, rehab counselors instigate the stay. Since 2015, 80 women have passed through the house. Weatherford estimates onethird of those are still sober, which she says is a solid number when dealing with addiction. There is a monthly fee for living at the

house, but the goal is for no woman to be turned away because of cost. To that end, Weatherford opened Talbot House Bakery in November 2017 to raise money for rent, utilities, insurance, transportation and other living expenses for residents. She leased the former cafeteria kitchen at the McDougal Center and found the cinnamon roll recipe she once used to make batches of the baked goods to sell to keep her own children fed in her darkest hours. The bakery also serves as a training ground to give residents job skills. Each woman is required to volunteer at least five hours a week at the bakery. Those who want job skills training

can earn a ServSafe food-service certificate that could help with employment later. Roberson sees the kitchen as a chance at a new life, if she’s willing to put in the work. It’s also her chance to give back to the place that helped her find the will to keep trying. “Every time I walk in here, it reminds me where I was not that long ago,” she said. “I see customers smiling and tell some of them my story, and I don’t see judgment from them or the other girls and Becky. I never knew there was love like this before, and I’m glad I get to work here so some other woman like me gets the chance to come find it.” February 2018 | INVITATION TUPELO

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View more photos at invitationtupelo.com.

HOPE FOR THE HOLIDAYS

North Mississippi Dance Centre hosted its fifth annual Hope for the Holidays on Nov. 19 at Tupelo High School Performing Arts Center. The event has raised over $65,000 for St. Jude children’s hospital. photographed by Elizabeth Roberts

Maclain Griffith, Rachel Frick and Sarah Beth Stewart

Jim Karrant with Frances and Molley Massey, Maddox and Madylyn Adair, and Harrison and Mary Frances Flowers

Sarah Karrant and Savannah Kirksey

Jim, Ava and Rachel Waide with Natalie Wallace, Sloan May, Sandra Brewer and Wanda Pierce

Beth and Robert Frick

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Linda and Junior Harbor

Hilda LeGoff with Caroline, Jeff and Linda Buse and Claudia Blaylock

Grayson, Brian, Ella Grace and Jamie Ramels

Eva, Catherine, Stephanie and Sophie Lindsey


Zoey and Ashlyn Clark with Aubrey Burke

Claire and Laurie Cagle with Weshley Russell

Allison and Maynor Malone

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View more photos at invitationtupelo.com.

OLE MISS CHEER SHOWCASE

Extreme Athletics held a cheer showcase Jan. 9 featuring the Ole Miss cheerleading squads. The event included a performance and a meet-andgreet with the coed and all-girl squads. photographed by Amanda Cody

Ole Miss cheerleading squads

Blair Bergmann, Ryan O’Connor, Sydney and David Schuch

Jaylon Carter, Camryn Cox and Dillan Rawson

Trent Nettles, Savannah Dunaway, Madicyn Boudreaux, Breanna Price and Cassie Williams

Tracy, Ethan and Julie Thompson

Nan and Gracie Pittman, Maddie Blanchard, Alyssa Lewis, Caroline and Mia Catherine Harris

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Tanner Cary, Emma Rae Leathers and Lilee Rose

Harlee Wilson and Madi Ballard


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View more photos at invitationtupelo.com.

NEW EXPECTATIONS FOR WOMEN IN MISSISSIPPI New Expectations for Women in Mississippi hosted its annual luncheon Nov. 30 at St. James Church. The event, sponsored by BankPlus, featured over 50 door prizes and a trip to Gulf Shores, Alabama. photographed by Elizabeth Roberts

Nina Strother and Tilda Bouchillion

Patricia Bennett, Vicki Beghtol and Kathy Anderson

Courtney Holcomb and Zell Long

Summer Ray Smith, Connie Rieves, Addy Maxcy, Kayla Baxter, Britni Rutherford and Amber Gray

26 INVITATION TUPELO | February 2018

Mallory Harris and Bethany Bonner

Thiquita Ward and Stacey Loden

Nicole Calvert, Carey Snider, Gabrielle Cooper, Blakley Young, Albine Bennett and Mandy Ramey


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BATTLE OF THE BANDS

Blue Fox Productions presented Battle of the Bands on Dec. 16 at Tupelo Cotton Mill. Six local bands participated by competing for cash and prizes. photographed by Amanda Cody

Katelyn Mathis, Hillary Poe, Ashley Hamilton, Amanda McKeaun and Natalie June

Cristina Curry, Robin Maynard and Kristin Hayes

Alene and Anthony Jones

Blake Wages, Alex Hubbert, Zach Dickerson and Keenan Stone

Robin and Troy Neuhaus

28 INVITATION TUPELO | February 2018

Luke Johnson and Caleb Guth

Kimberly To, Chance Underwood, Alyssa Wren and Joey Johnson

Allye Neuhaus and Alex Bristow

Ashley Pulse and Brittany Jones


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JUNIOR COTILLION HOLLY BALL

The National League of Junior Cotillions Lee County chapter held the Holly Ball on Dec. 11 at Tupelo Country Club. The ball featured dancing, refreshments and lessons on social skills. photographed by Amanda Cody

Chuck, Ella and Tina Barber

Laura Beth Erwin and Holly Goodwin

30 INVITATION TUPELO | February 2018

April and Nan Pittman

Kim and Miner Sistrunck with Wylle, Ellen and Vara Harrison

Members of the Lee County chapter of Junior Cotillion

Charlotte Wise, Lily Roper and Addy Eckard

Jarett and Macy Goodwin

Maylen, Elizabeth, David and Prunt Gable


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NORTH MISSISSIPPI SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA The North Mississippi Symphony Orchestra presented Christmas with the NMSO Dec. 9 at Tupelo High School Performing Arts Center. photographed by Anthony Teague

Myisha Joiner with Jazmyn and Joanne Gore

Kirsten McAfee and Brianna Essary

Poretia Traylor and Kashun Bougard

Phyllis and Benny Stewart with Sandy, Conner and Chris Shelton

Sheridan, Dot, Savannah and Kirk Shumpert

32 INVITATION TUPELO | February 2018

Larry, Amy and Locke Burrell with Shawn Williams

Madeline McCain and Gabe Morris

Callie, Gloria and Laura Beasley

Cody Bates, Pierre Momon, Melanie Williams, Jack Thompson and Anthony Williams

Jed and Jennifer Rinehart

Lark Caldwell, Judy Cunningham and Cynthia Colburn


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Kaiden, Deborah and Majid Najeddine

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DISNEY ON ICE PRESENTS “FROZEN”

BancorpSouth Arena hosted a performance of Disney on Ice’s “Frozen” on Dec. 8. The production company also partnered with Mississippi Radio Group to host a coat drive for the United Way. photographed by Elizabeth Roberts

Lily and Autumn Hubbert

Lindsey and Ava Freeman

34 INVITATION TUPELO | February 2018

Haylee Davis, Cayden Beavers, Sophia Rattler and Liberty Skufca

Alana Stapleton and Maddie Rayer

Britlann and Brittne Hall

Hayden Saylors, Cordereck Buckley, Jakyiah Jones and Victoria Vasquez

Whitney and Zoey Kelly

Marley Metcalf and Courtney Wolf

Noah, Amy and Chase Dawson


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PIED PIPER PLAYERS CHRISTMAS SHOWS

Pied Piper Players performed the Christmas shows “Way, Way Down East” and “It’s an Okie Dokie Life” for students at Church Street School on Dec. 2. photographed by Elizabeth Roberts

Alicia Monts and Shelly Slatter

Elon Slatter and Autumn Cooper

Nailah Slatter and Kennedy Green

36 INVITATION TUPELO | February 2018

Misty, Meadow and Bel Cox with Charlene Fletcher

Misty Carroll with Melanie, Lanie and Kevin White

Jackson Short, Russell Fredrick, Henry Swanson and Emma Rose Odom

Amit and Shruti Gupta

William Short and Lindy Monts


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TUPELO CHRISTMAS PARADE

The 69th annual Tupelo Christmas parade, themed “A Community Christmas,” was held on Dec. 1 and sponsored by Reed’s Department Store. photographed by Elizabeth Roberts

Sa’miah Gilleylen and Kredence Long

Tammy, Rylee and Ethan McIntosh

Trevor Walker, Ruby Guzman and D’aria Hughes

38 INVITATION TUPELO | February 2018

Nathan, Lindsey, Elizabeth and Will Christian

Jareylan, Jakeira and Janieah McCoy

Britt, Anna Katherine and Kati Beth Sheffield with Karsyn Dubose and Chloe Scott

Teresa and Mike Mitchell

Kayla Ponds, Zoey Worthey and Teresa Pannell


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JUNIOR AUXILIARY ASSOCIATES LUNCHEON Junior Auxiliary of Tupelo hosted its annual Associates Luncheon Jan. 26 at Park Heights. Guests enjoyed a preview of the table decor and lunch menu designed around this year’s “Once Upon a Time in Tupelo”-themed Charity Ball. photographed by Amanda Cody

Michelle Taylor and Stephanie West

Carley Johnston and Jennie Bradford Curlee

40 INVITATION TUPELO | February 2018

Elizabeth Rose, Marty Brown and Karen Alvarez

Belva Poland And Dale Warriner

Justin Hughes, Jamie Hutcheson, Dan Schroeder and Jose Solis

Emma Kate Mikels and Jima Alexander

Jennifer Calhoun, Beth Eckard and Bess Leathers

Lauren Hurt and Ashley Benjamin

Meg Gibens and Jackie Deaton


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ALPHA KAPPA ALPHA COTILLION

The Nu Sigma Omega chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority held its first Rosebud Debutante Cotillion Dec. 2 at The Summit Center. photographed by Amanda Cody

Demetra and Aniyah Sherer

Sherita Birks and Tamika Martin

Melissa Nichols, Jakeyah Fourcha and Gloria Pounds

42 INVITATION TUPELO | February 2018

Julidden Westbrooks and Kenya Coleman

Carmen April-Washington

Daniel, Benae and Seth Stephen

Markeda and Lillie Coleman

Tatiana Morris with Carmen and Cortavious Finnie


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OUT AND ABOUT CONTINUED ON PAGE 46

REGIONAL SPELLING BEE

Della, Isaac, Bridget and Divine Shinault

Celia Johnston and Averi Coleman

LAWHON SCHOOL BACKPACK REFILL PROJECT

Lawhon School students and faculty with members of Delta Sigma Theta and Omega Psi Phi

SALTILLO HIGH SCHOOL DANCERS BREAKFAST WITH SANTA

Madison Beasley and Chloe DeVaughn

Millie Mckissack, Anna Caroline May and Addy Pollard

44 INVITATION TUPELO | February 2018

Nathan, Andrew and Melissa Keen

WALLY MORGAN STATE FARM OFFICE GRAND OPENING

Phil Nanney, Phyllis Stanford and David Kitchens

Wally Morgan and Kayla Dewberry

LOCAL LICKS SONGWRITER SESSIONS

Leslie Reed and Allison McCharen

Tyler Shook and Chatham Kumapareddy


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OUT AND ABOUT CONTINUED FROM PAGE 44

JASON WARREN AND ASSOCIATES OPEN HOUSE

ACADEMY SPORTS BIKE DONATION

Olivia Kate, Marley, Aletha, Chad and Will Mims

Chelsey Lautensack, Robin Walton and Jason Warren

J. BRITT AND COMPANY SECOND ANNUAL GIFT AND GIVE

Jamie Burton and Blair Baldwyn

Amy Kirby and Stacey Gregory

NORTHEAST MISSISSIPPI MUSICIANS CHRISTMAS PARTY

Joseph Lackey, Steve Barton and Preston George

46 INVITATION TUPELO | February 2018

Blake Miller and Chase Windham

Carver School students

ELIZABETH HEISKELL COOKBOOK SIGNING

Sandy Flatt and Susan Parker

Debbie Tindall, Elizabeth Russell and Susan Webb

THE MILL AT MCCULLOUGH OPEN HOUSE

Beverly Thomas and Jimmy Stephens

Victoria and David Sparks


February 2018 | INVITATION TUPELO

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recipe

BROWNIES

contributed by Mandy Roberson of Talbot House Bakery photographed by Joe Worthem

M

andy Roberson has been making brownies from her mother’s recipe for years. She bakes the family favorite in a round cake pan so she can cut the sweet treats into wedges, and she likes to try different versions of the old standby by experimenting with additional ingredients, from nuts to coffee granules to chocolate chips. “My son’s favorite version is a pan of plain brownies that have been spread with butter fresh out of the oven,” Roberson said. Read more about Roberson and the new Talbot House Bakery on page 20.

Mom’s Brownies ½ cup (1 stick) butter or margarine, melted 2 (1-ounce) squares unsweetened chocolate (or 6 Tablespoons cocoa and 2 Tablespoons oil) 1 cup sugar 2 eggs 2/3 cup sifted self-rising flour (or 2/3 cup sifted regular flour mixed with ¼ teaspoon salt and 1½ teaspoons baking powder) 1 teaspoon vanilla OPTIONAL ADDITIONAL INGREDIENTS: 

3/4 cup chopped pecans 1 Tablespoon instant coffee granules Small handful of chocolate chips or white chocolate chips Heat oven to 350°F. Grease the bottom of an 8-inch round cake pan. Melt butter and chocolate in saucepan over low heat. Remove from heat, and stir in remaining ingredients in order listed. Beat well. Bake 30 minutes. Cool, and cut into wedges. Note: If using cocoa and oil, simply mix into melted butter and follow the rest of the instructions.

48 INVITATION TUPELO | February 2018


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Invitation Tupelo - February 2018  
Invitation Tupelo - February 2018  
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