2 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
J U N E 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J U LY 5 , 2 0 1 7 | w w w . l a g n i a p p e m o b i l e . c o m ASHLEY TRICE Co-publisher/Editor firstname.lastname@example.org
ROB HOLBERT Co-publisher/Managing Editor email@example.com GABRIEL TYNES Assistant Managing Editor firstname.lastname@example.org DALE LIESCH Reporter email@example.com JASON JOHNSON Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org KEVIN LEE Associate Editor/Arts Editor email@example.com
5 10 14
The Mobile Housing Board of Commissioners voted 3-1 to extend an offer of employment to George Lee Byers.
The fatiguing prospects of two August elections.
The 158-year-old Hallett House at 503 Government St. is receiving $20,000 in upgrades.
It might be a little pricey, but all plates were scraped clean during a recent meal at P.F. Chang’s.
ANDY MACDONALD Cuisine Editor firstname.lastname@example.org STEPHEN CENTANNI Music Editor email@example.com
J. MARK BRYANT Sports Writer firstname.lastname@example.org STEPHANIE POE Copy Editor email@example.com DANIEL ANDERSON Chief Photographer firstname.lastname@example.org LAURA RASMUSSEN Art Director www.laurarasmussen.com BROOKE O’DONNELL Advertising Sales Executive email@example.com
Since Searcy Hospital’s closure, adult patients with special needs navigate a system of home care that can be light on oversight.
BETH WILLIAMS Advertising Sales Executive firstname.lastname@example.org ALEEN MOMBERGER Advertising Sales Executive email@example.com RACHEL THOMAS Advertising Sales Executive firstname.lastname@example.org MELISSA EDGE Editorial Assistant email@example.com
Artist Lisa Johnston Hancock’s rural inspiration is taking flight in a new exhibition and children’s book.
Local hip-hop artist Charod Jones released his debut album, “Destiny,” with a little help from his friends.
ROSS PRITCHARD Distribution Manager firstname.lastname@example.org JACKIE CRUTHIRDS Office Manager email@example.com CONTRIBUTORS: Lee Hedgepeth, Ron Sivak, Jeff Poor, Asia Frey, Brian Holbert, Ken Robinson, W. Perry Hall ON THE COVER: GROUP HOMES BY DANIEL ANDERSON POSTMASTER: Send address changes to P.O. Box 3003 Mobile, AL 36652. Editorial, advertising and production offices are located at 1100B Dauphin St. Mobile, AL 36604. Mailing address is P.O. Box 3003 Mobile, AL 36652. Phone: 251.450.4466 Fax 251.450.4498. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com LAGNIAPPE is printed at Walton Press. All letters sent to Lagniappe are considered to be intended for publication. Member: Association of Alternative Newsweeklies and Alternative Weeklies Network All rights reserved. Something Extra Publishing, Inc. Nothing may be reprinted, photocopied or in any way reproduced without the expressed permission of the publishers. Individuals may take one copy of the paper free of charge from area businesses, racks or boxes. After that, papers are $3 per issue. Removal of more than one copy from these points constitutes theft. Violators are subject to prosecution.
For Lagniappe home delivery visit
24 30 34 36 38 FILM
“The Hero” is really a character study of a film, but Sam Elliott plays a great character.
WALA’s recent lawsuit compelled the city of Mobile to release public records.
Spring Hill College’s Mark Spicer Jr. recently auditioned for a berth on a national rugby squad.
Boozie witnessed some causeway fun in the sunshine!
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 3
Editor: In regards to the 22 million people that are being cut off or out due to the Senate’s proposed “Trumpcare” plan, why don’t we take the funds that are being sent to other countries for whatever and take care of the U.S. first? The problem would be solved and the Democrats will have to buy in or tell American citizens other countries or deals are more important!
Editor: Does the population statistic of nonblack people living in Mobile reflect a cumulative percentage of 48 percent, i.e., all Anglos, Asians and Hispanics? And is the ethnic population percentage of African-Americans who are of voting age 52 percent when compared to all other nonblack ethnic groups? If so, is it any wonder why “Same” Jones is actively passive when it comes to his campaign efforts for the mayoral election in August? In a democracy, if the only thing that matters is how many people of voting age can be motivated to vote for any given candidate, and the population sample of any given ethnic group is a dominant majority — and that dominant majority goes “all in” as a voting bloc — the viability of that democracy becomes arguably questionable, e.g., a banana republic. Perhaps this is why some political scientists see democracy and the rule of the majority as just another form of slavery enacted upon another minority, namely the individual. For if liberal democracy is to be healthy and well, it cannot be allowed to slip into the demagoguery of identity politics.
Butch McPherson Mobile
ON POINT Ashley: Thanks for your astute assessment of Luther Strange’s commercials (“Condescending politicians fishing for votes,” June 22) and for highlighting the fact that the people in Alabama would like to hear real solutions to real problems instead of watching Luther bash previous administrations and fire a handgun. Kelly McKean Mobile
John C. Davis Mobil
4 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
LOCAL DELEGATION RETURNS FROM PARIS AIR SHOW By Dale Liesch The Mobile delegation didn’t return from the International Paris Air Show with any big announcements this year, but the group came back encouraged about the relationship it continues to build with suppliers from around the world. Mayor Sandy Stimpson, who represented the city at the air show, said the trip should lead to more job announcements within the year. “It was an excellent show,” he said. “We continue to do what we’ve been doing for the last few years. We don’t have any imminent announcements, but we came home encouraged.” County Commissioner Connie Hudson said the delegation took advantage of the opportunity to continue to build relationships within the aerospace industry. “There were a lot of good meetings,” she said at a press conference June 22. “There was a lot of interest. I’m very excited about what I’ve heard.” Airbus, which has a final assembly line at the Brookley Aeroplex in Mobile, secured $40 billion worth of new aircraft orders at the air show. The company announced in a press release that it got firm orders for a total of 144 aircraft at $18.5 billion and memorandums of understanding for another 182 aircraft worth $21.2 billion. The company announced sales for the A320 family of jets were robust, with orders for a total of 306 aircraft at $33.8 billion coming in. Stimpson called the A321, which is produced at the Mobile facility, “kind of the hottest plane
in the class.” While Airbus announced the plant would produce as many as four planes per month this year, Stimpson said there has now been talk of more in the future. “There has been conversations going on about a rate of six,” Stimpson said. “There’s no definitive date.” Specifically, Delta ordered 10 more A321 jets at the air show to add to its previous order of 30 in May, Airbus announced. The airline took delivery of its first A321in March of last year. Delta now has ordered a total of 122 A321s, each powered by CFM56 engines from CFM International. “The A321 is fast becoming a favorite aircraft of our customers and employees alike,” said Greg May, Delta’s senior vice president for supply chain management and fleet. “Its excellent operating economics and customer capacity also make it a great fit for our U.S. domestic network.” As relationships continue to possibly pay dividends in the future, Stimpson said the city must continue to improve infrastructure in order to attract more business and more jobs to the area. Stimpson said the city would have to continue to work with the Alabama Department of Transportation on state projects with local impact, such as the Interstate 10 bridge project. “Without a bridge we’ll continue to have traffic congestion on I-10,” Stimpson said. “It’s important for the growth at Brookley.” He also said the city would have to continue to “wisely” spend its capital improvement project dollars, made available through a sales tax increase.
BAYBRIEF | MOBILE
Offer extended HOUSING BOARD NAMES PICK FOR EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR BY DALE LIESCH
fter a somewhat contentious and at times confusing special-called meeting Monday, June 26, the Mobile Housing Board of Commissioners offered the job of executive director to George Lee Byers. Byers, who most recently worked as director of the Bridgeport Housing Authority in Connecticut, was approved 3-1 by the board. Commissioner Melvin Clark abstained from the vote because he had not been involved in the interview process. Commissioner Reid Cummings voted against Byers after his own choice, Akinola Popoola, was voted down by the same margin. While three of four commissioners ranked Popoola higher than Byers, Popoola did not respond to supplemental questions following his face-to-face meeting with the board last week. Although the additional questionnaire was delivered June 20, Popoola reportedly didn’t receive it until Friday, June 23. His responses
it is Monday morning, a week later, and we’re still struggling.” Commissioner Joyce Freeman had Byers ranked above Popoola from the start. “I feel Mr. Byers can hit the ground running,” she said. “I feel like he is the person we need for the Mobile Housing Board. I think he’s the right man for the job.” If he accepts the job, Byers will replace board CFO and acting Executive Director Lori Shackelford. Shackelford was named interim director after Dwayne Vaughn stepped down from the position in January. Byers himself resigned as executive director of the Bridgeport Housing Authority in July 2016 after what was described as a spat with the city’s mayor, according to reporting in The Connecticut Post. He had been hired in October 2014, The Post reports, and was given a severance equal to $175,000 in salary and benefits. Byers was hired in Bridgeport after the housing authority there was deemed “troubled” by HUD, The Post reports. Mobile Housing BYERS, WHO MOST Board of Commissioners Chairwoman Kimberly Pettway has said the group would be looking for RECENTLY WORKED AS a candidate with experience in dealing with a DIRECTOR OF THE BRIDGEPORT struggling authority. With MHB, Byers would also have a lot on HOUSING AUTHORITY IN his plate. In addition to dealing with a converCONNECTICUT, WAS APPROVED sion to the Rental Assistance Demonstration — which places public housing properties under 3-1 BY THE BOARD. HUD’s voucher program but also allows the board to take out loans — the board will also weren’t received by Monday morning, leaving have to navigate the transformation while under commissioners to question whether the current the watchful eye of the federal agency after head of the Opelika Housing Authority really it was recently cited for a conflict of interest wanted the job. involving a contract for make-ready work dating “Would it have been appropriate to get back to 2011. some kind of confirmation he wanted the job?” While the board eventually settled on Byers, Commissioner Norman Hill asked board staff there was some initial confusion as it was members. discovered that staff members — as is customHill speculated Popoola may have been ary with MHB — hadn’t checked his profesdeterred by a one-year work test period that sional references before the vote was cast. Bell would be implemented for the job by the Motold commissioners staff would begin calling bile County Personnel Board. Board attorney references and sending responses to the board Raymond Bell said following the test period, for review. the executive director could be approved by the Cummings and Pettway said they felt the way board. The salary range for the position was not the staff handled the references was “backwards.” discussed at the meeting, but whoever completes “The presumption is we’ve already called the test period may receive a slight pay increase these people,” Cummings said. “I’m surprised after board approval, Bell said. we haven’t.” While Cummings said all three of the canPettway called it a misstep, but wanted to didates were qualified for the job, he preferred continue to move forward. She added the board Popoola because he was “head and shoulders specifically asked staff to call the references above the other two candidates” when it came before the vote. to experience and also has a strong relationship “I’ve never, ever seen such a practice,” she with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban said, referring to calling references after agreeDevelopment. ing to hire a candidate. “He knows how to get things done,” CumPettway acknowledged staff fears of affectmings said, adding that the board should restart ing a candidate’s current employment, but added the search if Popoola wasn’t selected as leader. that the candidates, in this scenario, provided Other commissioners said they felt troubled the references. by Popoola’s lack of response to the question“We’re a little bit annoyed at the process, I naire. Commissioner Norman Hill said there know I am, Pettway said. “It just seems a little was no doubt Popoola’s experience and contacts messy.” made him an attractive candidate, but added he The board had intended to vote this week on thinks Byers and Popoola “had equal talent” for a contract to demolish Roger Williams Homes, the job. but plans have not yet been finalized. Bell said “It concerns me, [Popoola’s] lack of a it would be a few weeks out. The board tabled response,” Hill said. “I can’t imagine — here the vote.
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 5
BAYBRIEF | EASTERN SHORE
Summer reading spectacle LOCAL TEACHER’S READING LIST, CLASS MATERIALS CAUSE UPROAR BY LEE HEDGEPETH
summer reading list assigned by a Spanish Fort High School teacher of Advanced Placement (AP) government and economics has been removed from the Baldwin County school system’s website following public backlash, but similarly controversial material remains posted on the site as of this writing. The summer reading spectacle began when the reading list for 12th grade teacher Gene Ponder’s AP course was posted and widely circulated on social media. The list of 31 books leans overwhelmingly to the political right, including a few works by mainstream conservatives such as Thomas Sowell and Ronald Reagan, scattered among many others by such firebrands as Ann Coulter, Mark Levin and Michael Savage. Students were instructed to pick one book to read. Many of the books on the list, which includes few academically oriented texts, directly attack one political viewpoint, with no books featuring opposing views. The list includes such titles as “Liberalism is a Mental Disorder: Savage Solutions” by Michael Savage, “Guilty: Liberal Victims and Their Assault on America” by Ann Coulter and “48 Liberal Lies about American History” by Larry Schweikart. The content of the list immediately concerned Elizabeth Denham, whose son will be in Ponder’s class in the fall, when he brought it home from school. “He brought me the reading list, and I was horrified,” Denham told Lagniappe. “There were no academic titles listed, and the list was populated with almost all far-right, conservative perspectives. “Several authors were shock-jock type pundits who espouse hate. If he had offered a list with perspectives from both liberal and conservative points of view and asked them to read one from each side to compare and contrast, I would have been on board. I encourage my children to read things they don’t agree with so they have full perspectives and can learn from others. But in an academic setting, there needs to be balance.” Denham and others reached out to Spanish Fort High School and Baldwin County Board of Education officials about the list, and they took action. After being contacted by Lagniappe, Baldwin County schools superintendent Eddie Tyler said the list had not gone through the necessary approval process for summer reading assignments.
“Mr. Ponder’s reading list that’s going on social media has not been endorsed by the school or the school system,” Tyler said. “The list has been removed by the teacher. Baldwin County Public Schools has a process to vet and approve reading lists so that a variety of sources are used. I expect all employees to follow our processes, procedures and policies.” An email to parents and students from SPHS Principal Brian Williamson made clear the assignment should be disregarded. “There has been some confusion regarding the release of a summer reading assignment for the government and economics classes for the 2017-18 school year,” Williamson’s email said. “Please disregard this assignment as there is not a current summer reading list that has been approved by the school. We will be sure to notify you should there be any future assignments.” AP classes are aimed at preparing students for collegelevel coursework and are administered nationally by the College Board. While the College Board has not yet responded to questions about whether Ponder’s list meets its curriculum, example syllabi on the board’s website show instructional materials with more mainstream sources, such as the Federalist and Anti-Federalist Papers and government-oriented anthologies such as the “Lanahan Readings in American Polity.” After Denham and other parents’ concerns were aired — and after it had gone viral on social media — Ponder’s list was removed from the school’s official website. “I appreciate Mr. Williamson’s response to this list and look forward to a new list being produced,” Denham said of that decision. “I hope in the future these lists will be vetted more carefully.” While summer reading lists may indeed be vetted more quickly in the future, the same may not necessarily be said of other class materials posted on the site. Several classroom presentations, some of which are still on the SFHS website as of this writing, include similarly controversial, conservatively slanted content. One PowerPoint presentation, called “Second Amendment,” includes a slide featuring former President Barack Obama with the words “Change you had better believe in! Higher taxes,
bigger government, socialized medicine, more dangerous world, more ‘activist’ judiciary.” At the bottom, another comment: “Free men do not ask permission to bear arm [sic].” The next slide in the presentation says “Guns have only two enemies: rust and politicians” over a picture of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Then, a few slides later, an Obama campaign logo appears with the caption “sign of the easily fooled.” Such instructional materials intended for classroom use also raise questions about the balance of Ponder’s class itself, not just its assignments, according to Denham. “My son, Luke, is the southeast regional director for the state of Alabama for the High School Democrats of America,” Denham said. “He is one of 90 children chosen to attend the HSDA Summit in Washington, D.C., next week. How is he supposed to sit in this class and feel he has a voice when only one side is presented? I pride myself on teaching my kids to find and use their voices. Teachers who espouse their own political perspective in class make it more difficult for children to feel comfortable speaking and debating the issues.” A former student who posted on social media in support of Ponder, though, said he disagreed with the instructor’s being painted as intensely partisan. “Gene Ponder was hands down my favorite teacher in high school,” the student, who was in Ponder’s first class in 1998, said. “He allowed me and others to see there is more than one side to a story. That’s exactly what he is doing here is opening up interesting dialogue so students can debate all sides instead of the biased, mainstream topics.” In any case, Ponder is no stranger to the public eye. About 10 years ago, he ran for a seat in the Alabama House of Representatives as a Democrat. In 2010, he ran for lieutenant governor as a Republican. In running that race, Ponder circulated a proposal he wanted adopted by the state Legislature saying “all compulsory federal legislation that directs states to comply under threat of force by civil or criminal penalties or sanctions … be prohibited and repealed,” calling such federal law “coercion, intimidation and blackmail.” Then Republican State Sen. Hank Erwin, who was also running for lieutenant governor, said Ponder’s proposal went too far. “We’re not trying to secede from the Union,” Erwin told AL.com in 2009. “I don’t think you need to use ... language like that to try to get the point across.” Ponder doesn’t shy away from political controversy, either. He did not respond to requests for comment for this article, but according to another former student who posted on social media appears to have authored a personal blog, ponderthatliberty.wordpress.com, which includes several highly charged political posts. In one post, “Racism and Bigotry in America 2015,” Ponder writes that white men, not any other demographic, are the subject of the most clear and institutionalized racism in the U.S. “Where are my 14th Amendment Civil Rights? I have two white-male sons, who will suffer legalized discrimination all because of the way they were born; with a penis and white skin,” Ponder wrote. “When will my two sons receive their white-male privileges and their Civil Rights? Will they receive special privileges and ‘free’ public money for admission to college for having a penis and white skin? Will they receive employment promotions in the public and private sector for having a penis and white skin?” Ponder’s personal blog is in no way connected to the school’s website. As for the list, although it’s been removed from the school’s website, it appears to have been used since at least 2014.
BAYBRIEF | MOBILE In Prichard, residents are still dealing with the effects of a 2008 mercaptan leak by Mobile Gas, said Carletta Davis, president of the We Matter Eight Mile Community Association. Mercaptan is the chemical added to natural gas to give it its rotten egg odor. Davis told Booker the “deadly” chemical could still be smelled by Eight Mile residents. NEW JERSEY SEN. CORY BOOKER VISITS MOBILE ON ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE TOUR “We still have mercaptan we’re breathing in nine years later,” she said. “We need all hands on deck.” BY DALE LIESCH The Alabama Department of Public Health in March released a statement admitting that the effects of the mercaptan spill were having a negative impact fficials with the cities of Mobile and Prichard life, told Booker most of her siblings have died of cancer, on Eight Mile residents. Mobile Gas is still working to mitigate the issue, using joined local environmentalists in welcoming U.S. despite there being no family history of the disease. pumps and cleaning the area most affected by the spill. Sen. Cory Booker (D-New Jersey) to Africatown Ballard said of her seven siblings who lived in AfricaBefore leaving on a tour of Africatown Sunday morning, Booker told a on Sunday, June 25, to discuss the community’s town during the time the paper mill was operational, four gaggle of reporters he would work in the Senate to make changes to help environmental plight. have died of cancer. She said she is a two-time cancer residents in communities like Africatown all over the country. According to Booker spoke briefly, but mostly listened as residents survivor herself. political pundits, Booker is a possible Democratic candidate for president in and activists at the Mobile County Training School Ballard stopped short of blaming the chemicals from a 2020. Similarly, Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg made stops (MCTS) described their efforts to fight what they called now-shuttered paper mill for the increased rate of illness in in South Alabama earlier this year as part of a “listening tour.” “industrial encroachment” in the area known for being the her family, but she described life in Africatown while the “I’ve been very frustrated throughout the state to see how little the [Envilanding place of the last slave ship in the country. Booker paper mill was operational. ronmental Protection Agency] is doing to address these issues,” he said. “It’s had spent the weekend in Alabama and was on his way to She said her family would have to wash and then unacceptable to me. New Orleans as part of an environmental justice factrewash clothes that had been hung outside to dry because “You have such serious issues of environmental concern, really objectionfinding trip. of particles falling from the air. She said vehicles were able environmental injustices and you don’t have a viable EPA to protect it,” he “I have a strong belief that you all share with me that rusted out. added. “That’s something I’m going to be doing everything I can to change.” injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere,” he “We have struggled; we have worked,” Ballard said. He called the fight for environmental justice a “civil rights” issue because said in opening remarks. “This isn’t an individualized bat- “We are pleading and begging for help.” it typically impacts poor and minority communities. He used Africatown as tle, this is a larger environmental justice movement in our Ramsey Sprague, president of the Mobile Environmen- an example. country where a lot of communities — often communities tal Justice Action Coalition (MEJAC) told Booker the Afri“Here’s a historic African-American town that traces its roots back to of not great wealth, often communities of color — are catown community was impacted by a pipeline that cuts slavery, and I’ve seen this other places in the state, as well as my state, where struggling against economic and environmental obstacles across a baseball field at the MCTS. He said at one point people are choosing to put these toxic environments, whether it’s landfills or that just shouldn’t be in a nation this great.” Canadian tar sands were being shipped by rail into Mobile industrial sites,” he said. “Why are they being disproportionately zoned into Ruth Ballard, an Africatown resident for most of her on a daily basis. poor, black communities?”
6 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
BAYBRIEF | MOBILE COUNTY
Regional play MOBILE COUNTY MOVES TO PURCHASE SEMMES PUBLIC LIBRARY BY JASON JOHNSON
fter successfully renegotiating the lease for the Semmes Public Library, the Mobile County Commission is looking to purchase the building from its current owners for $1.3 million. Since 2007, the county has maintained a $143,000 yearly lease on the property while paying annual operating costs at the library of $162,000 — far exceedings its contribution to other county libraries. That disparity came to a head in February when two commissioners said they had no intention of renewing the lease with CVS Corp. Now both parties are moving toward an agreeable purchase price for the building county officials initially hoped to buy 10 years ago. Commissioners voted 2-1 to move forward with purchasing the building using $1.3 million from the county’s general fund. The price point is a steep reduction from the $2.2 million CVS was seeking for the same property just three months ago. Commissioner Connie Hudson, whose district includes Semmes, led the charge to secure the library’s future, and called the pending purchase a victory for the library’s supporters. “This will help ensure the long-term viability of the Semmes Library, which has become such an important component of the northwestern part of Mobile County,” Hudson said. “There were 75,000 patrons, 20,000 active cardholders and 101,000 items checked out last year, and when you look at those kind of numbers, you realize how many people are being impacted.” While the future of the library may be secure, another point that arose from the controversy over the lease was the disparity in operational funding between the Semmes Library and those in other municipalities. In 2016, the library received $336,245 from the County Commission compared to libraries in Bayou La Batre and Mount Vernon, which received $7,000 and $4,000, respectively. When asked, Hudson said she doesn’t anticipate a change in those numbers in “the foreseeable future.” “I think what’s happened is there has been a greater realization of the impact the library has. It’s truly a regional library,” she added. “I think that’s really what’s come out of all of this.” Hudson was joined in support of the purchase by Commission President Merceria Ludgood, who earlier this year had expressed concern with the previous lease agreement. Like Hudson, though, Ludgood concluded the facility “serves far more than the city of Semmes.” “For the people I serve, and the county at large, I think it’s particularly important that we maintain it,” Ludgood added. Commissioner Jerry Carl voted against the measure, citing the recurring costs. After the vote, Carl mentioned that some objections to the previous lease were based on provisions requiring the county to maintain the property and cover the cost of utilities and insurance. By purchasing it, Carl said, the commission was committing to those “for life.” “It’s déjà vu all over again,” he added. An appraisal of the property, conducted by M.D. Bell and Associates and obtained by Lagniappe, shows the parcel valued at roughly $1,328,000 — a figure below the $1.4 million
fair market value assessed by the Mobile County Revenue Commission in 2016. With the authorization to move forward, the county appears to be wasting no time finalizing the purchase. According to County Attorney Jay Ross, CVS has already made “a verbal agreement” to the terms of the sale. Ross said he’d expect the paperwork to be completed within 30 days.
Backstop approved for recycling center operator
As Lagniappe has previously reported, Goodwill Easterseals of the Gulf Coast’s agreement to operate the county’s recycling center in West Mobile has not exactly gone according to plan. Last fall, dips in commodity prices for much of what the center accepts to resell — glass, paper, plastic, aluminum — led to overall losses for the nonprofit organization. The County Commission voted to cover those losses with a $50,000 allocation in December taken from oil revenues generated by the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act (GOMESA), but with continued fluctuations in the prices of material, Goodwill Easterseals asked for and received some additional assurance from the county this week. In a 2-1 vote, commissioners agreed to match up to $150,000 a year for the next three years for any actual losses Goodwill Easterseals can link to commodity pricing. The county also agreed to take over the maintenance and capital repairs to certain pieces of equipment used at the facility. “Goodwill Easterseals is appreciative of the commission, and their concern is, they don’t want to lose money, all they want to do is break even. So far, though, they have not been successful in doing that,” Ross said. “At the end of that three-year period, if the model isn’t working, then everybody will need to re-evaluate.” However, where the money will come from when and if it’s needed isn’t entirely clear at this point. Hudson has maintained that, if Goodwill Easterseals needed additional monies, they could be pulled from the county’s’ GOMESA funding, but Ross said Monday there’s no way to know whether that funding would available — meaning it could come out of the county’s general fund. As one of driving forces behind the grant funding that secured the recycling center’s construction, Hudson voted to to approve the backstop for Goodwill Easterseals. In keeping with the overall theme of the meeting, though, Carl voted against it. “You know, we get these projects … we get these buildings, and when they bleed we think putting a Band-Aid on it is going to stop the bleeding,” Carl said. “It never does.” Despite those concerns, the measure ultimately passed with support from Ludgood, who agreed the center had been a net positive for the county. She also said the next three years would allow time to analyze trends in the recycling industry and, if necessary, “look at an exit strategy” for both parties. “We’re government: Sometimes things we do pay for themselves, sometimes they don’t,” Ludgood added. “Sometimes we just provide services. That’s the nature of our work.”
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 7
BAYBRIEF | FAIRHOPE
Not so moved DESPITE THREAT OF SUIT, FAIRHOPE COUNCIL REFUSES FUNDS FOR MAYOR’S LAWYER
BY LEE HEDGEPETH
he Fairhope City Council approved close to a dozen resolutions at its latest meeting June 26, but one proposed by Mayor Karin Wilson and pushed by her, according to council members, under threat of legal action failed to gain support. That resolution would have authorized up to $15,000 for Wilson to negotiate agreements to contract a lawyer specifically for her office and for a mediator to negotiate between herself and the council, which have been in tense relations since their election last November. Wilson, who was at a mayor’s conference in Miami and did not attend Monday’s City Council meeting, sent Harry Satterwhite to represent her. Satterwhite, a Mobile-based attorney, was listed in the proposal as the mayor’s choice for legal counsel and spoke to members about the resolution. “There’s something on the agenda tonight … It’s a resolution [Mayor Wilson] is proposing to hire counsel for the mayor’s office here in Fairhope,” Satterwhite told council members on June 26. “She contacted me a couple of weeks ago and explained to me concerns she’s got about the relationship she has with the council, and it’s her perception that there’s a lot of tension with the council. There is a lack of cooperation, a lack of communication, a lack of information that she’s getting, and of course I understand the council has its own view and its own opinion of that.” For months, the Fairhope City Council and Mayor Wilson have been at odds. Earlier this year Wilson fired two city employees without notice. In response, the council imposed a temporary hiring freeze, a standoff that eventually fizzled but highlighted the ambiguity of power-sharing that’s causing angst among city leaders. Attorney Satterwhite next laid out what he saw as the best way forward in nixing that angst.
8 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
“We’ve kind of aired things out, and my recommendation was that Fairhope have an attorney for the mayor’s office, similar to what Mobile has,” Satterwhite explained. “Mobile has a state statute where the mayor has the appointing authority of the city attorney … and the council has its own attorney. So when there are disputes and the city attorney is placed in the difficult position here of trying to be neutral and not take either side … in Mobile, that doesn’t happen. [The attorneys] try to work it out.” Satterwhite also mentioned setting up mediation between city leaders — a cost also included in the resolution’s “not to exceed” $15,000 price tag. “We’ve also suggested we conduct a mediation where we come together with a mediator in a nonbinding setting — anyone can walk away at any time,” he said, adding it could help the mayor and council “come to a resolution … even if it’s a written resolution … to this.” Shortly after Satterwhite’s presentation, the floor was opened to public comment, and every speaker addressed the mayor’s proposed resolution: a couple for, and a few against. “From my perspective as a resident and a taxpayer, the optics of this resolution are not good,” Steve Yule, a Fairhope resident, said at the meeting. “To begin with, the city has had an attorney for years that has represented both the council and the mayor … this tells me that perhaps the city attorney is not doing his job well, and I don’t believe that. … Why are we doing this? This is $15,000.” Another Fairhope citizen, Barbara Smith, said she’d keep it brief and simple: “The city of Fairhope has a city attorney paid for by the city to take care of city needs,” Smith said. “If any city of Fairhope resident wants or needs an attorney, they would bear that expense. I feel as a
taxpayer and concerned citizen that this would and should apply to the mayor. If she is not comfortable [with the city attorney], she should bear the expense of her own attorney.” A couple of people, though, said they were in favor of whatever would move the city forward, even if it meant paying $15,000 and letting the mayor and council’s respective attorneys “hash it out.” “We’re at an impasse,” Paul Ripp said. “Mobile shows that it works. Why not? Let the attorneys hash it out.” “I think this is a good suggestion,” Ben Smith, another Fairhoper, said of the mayor’s proposed resolution. “The council needs to start working with her … I support it.” The council didn’t represent the public’s split opinion. Instead, every council member spoke against the proposal, and it died without a vote. Council member Jay Robinson was the first to explain his lack of support for the mayor’s resolution. “The city currently has three firms on payroll,” he said. “So to me personally at this time I don’t feel [it] a prudent use of tax money to hire yet another law firm.” Instead, Robinson said, leaders should seek guidance from the state attorney general’s office and the Alabama League of Municipalities for any disputed roles in governance. “Those are some alternatives we have for this issue without spending any more taxpayer money on it,” Robinson said. “I’ll be fine with whatever they decide.” Another member, Kevin Boone, was admittedly more blunt about the mayor’s plan. “We do need to probably do a better job of communicating, but it was communicated to me quite clearly that if we didn’t approve this, we’d be sued,” Boone said. “I can assure you if you want to communicate with this council, coming up with a threat … is not a real wise idea. I don’t take threats very well.” Jack Burrell, the head of the council, echoed Boone’s attitude toward a potential suit and mocked the idea of mediation on its face. “I would like to see better communication, but I also agree that this is not the way,” Burrell said. “As far as mediation goes, I feel like we are the mediators. I think that the council was elected by the city of Fairhope to make decisions on their behalf and I don’t think we’ve ever overstepped our bounds. If somebody wants to make a legal challenge to that, then I’m up for it.” Burrell also gave a nod to the city’s current attorneys, who he said were done a disservice by the mayor’s failed resolution. “I have faith in them, and I’m sorry the mayor doesn’t have as much trust in them,” he said. “It’s unfortunate that it’s come to this. I don’t think it’s necessary.” The next Fairhope City Council meeting is scheduled for Monday, July 10.
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 9
COMMENTARY | DAMN THE TORPEDOES
The fatiguing prospects of two August elections ROB HOLBERT/MANAGING EDITOR/RHOLBERT@LAGNIAPPEMOBILE.COM
’ve had more than a few conversations lately with people expressing concern that the close proximity in August of the United States Senate special election primaries and Mobile’s municipal election might somehow suppress voting in one or both. In most of these discussions the person I spoke with expressed fear that going to the polls Aug. 15 to cast a vote in the U.S. Senate race would somehow sap the strength of Sandy Stimpson supporters and keep them from voting the following Tuesday. Perhaps this odd fear is just one sign of “Jonesaphobia” — defined as the completely rational fear of having Sam Jones once again running our fair city into the ground. Or maybe people truly can become exhausted after driving to a neighborhood polling place, producing some kind of identification, signing their names, filling in a small oval on a piece of paper, loading that paper into a machine that looks like a shredder, then driving back home or to work. I can definitely see needing more than
shoved down our collective throat. This broAlabamians have seen the full weight of the ken spigot of money is being used to whiteGOP political machine come down hard in wash the shady way Strange scooped up Jeff favor of Big Luther. Money has poured in Sessions’ seat. History is being rewritten by and Luther is consistently pushed out on Big Luther’s PR team. He was busy fighting national television to offer the GOP POV corruption and Obama now instead of being on one news show after another. Right now Luther’s logging more face time on the boob such an insider he had to recuse himself from the AG Office’s biggest corruption tube than “The Bachelorette.” cases. He touts Bentley’s resignation as havAnd let’s not forget the National Repubing something to do with his bold actions as lican Senatorial Committee actually issued AG, when the reality is he went hat-in-hand a fatwa upon political consultants who to visit a man being investigated by his ofwork for Big Luther’s opponents, warning fice to ask for a political appointment. they will be blackballed when it comes to What local district attorney could take a handling other Republican clients. This is private meeting with someone being investipolitical hardball at its finest, folks. gated by his/her office and ask for someIf you’re still skeptical that Strange is thing of value????! Strange was knee-deep the darling of the Washington establish— pretty deep, since his knees are so high ment — i.e., the slimy creatures in that swamp that needs to be drained — consider off the ground — in Montgomery sleaze, and meeting with Bentley for that appointthe way conservative GOP Congressman ment should at minimum have gotten him Mo Brooks was attacked after announcing slapped with ethics charges and certainly he would run against Big Luther. IF YOU WERE TO HAVE JUST warrants a full criminal investigation. The GOP super PAC called the Senate But Washington wants Luther Strange, Leadership Fund had this to say: “While RETURNED FROM MARS VIA ONE and that says all you need to know. He was Luther Strange was cleaning up the corrupOF ELON MUSK’S IMAGINED SPACE HOTELS tion in Montgomery, Mo Brooks was living a lobbyist in D.C. for a decade so this is just AND LANDED ON ALABAMA SOIL, YOU’D a return home. He’s simply a creature whose the life of a Washington insider, opposing Donald Trump and failing to get a single bill skin was getting too dry outside the swamp. LIKELY THINK THE ONLY ONE RUNNING FOR Unless someone else can break through signed into law in four terms in the House. THIS SEAT IS ‘BIG LUTHER.’ ” If Brooks can’t cut it in the House, how can this cascade of Washington money it’s hard to imagine an outcome in which Strange he be trusted to deliver results in the U.S. isn’t able to simply buy his way into the seat Senate? It’s clear Mo Brooks is more intera week to recover from such selfless exertion. We may be ested in advancing his own career than he is without much resistance. a nation of people who can make it to McDonald’s three with delivering for Alabama.” There’s still time for the race to get more times a week, but participating in the democratic process interesting, so I’ll keep wearing my jogging The Senate Leadership Fund then andoesn’t typically come with fries. nounced it would back up its rhetoric with a suit and taking daily vitamin supplements in With that in mind, Stimpson may want to start serv$2.6 million media buy in the state support- hopes it is truly worth the wear and tear on ing vitamin-packed smoothies at his rallies instead of my body and mind to make two trips to the ing their boy Luther. the now-controversial fried fish. Fried foods are known polls in August. We are getting Big Luther positively for making people lethargic. He might also consider rows of ellipticals and treadmills at those same rallies, helping his supporters build the stamina and lung strength they’ll need in order to go to the polls twice in a seven-day period. Or maybe those fearful of voting fatigue won’t really have much to worry about after all, because so far the senate race has looked much more like a coronation than a contest. Right now it’s all Luther all the time, and if things stay that dull the Senate race will probably be the one more frail voters skip. With less than two months to go before the Republican primary that will likely determine who holds one of Alabama’s U.S. Senate seats for the next 20-plus years, we are being washed over by former Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange. If you were to have just returned from Mars via one of Elon Musk’s imagined space hotels and landed on Alabama soil, you’d likely think the only one running for this seat is “Big Luther.” And if you listened to those BL commercials, you’d probably end up thinking “Dang, this guy sure has kicked a lot of butt!” Of course, most of what Big Luther has done is pour money into simply overwhelming the 18 other candidates for his dream job — the job he already nabbed on an interim basis by throwing ethics and the law out the window and soliciting former Luv Guv Robert Bentley for an appointment to fill out Jeff Sessions’ unexpired term. Since U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell determined that keeping the rather malleable Strange in the Republican caucus would be preferable to possibly A SEVEN COURSE MEAL: A HOT DOG AND A 6-PACK OF BEER. having some renegade who wouldn’t be easily controlled, HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA.
10 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
COMMENTARY | THE HIDDEN AGENDA
Thinking about what’s best for the 100 percent ASHLEY TRICE/EDITOR/ASHLEYTOLAND@LAGNIAPPEMOBILE.COM
o the casual observer, the Mobile mayoral race must seem pretty tame so far. While we get to see Big Luther making sweet, sweet love to a gun every 60 to 90 seconds on his numerous television ads for his run for U.S. Senate, we haven’t seen much of anything on the race between former Mayor Sam Jones against the man who ousted him, current Mayor Sandy Stimpson. Jones has not raised much money as of yet, so we most likely won’t see him fighting Big Lu for advertising space on the airwaves. As such, we haven’t seen much from Stimpson, who has a sizable war chest, either. There have been no debates so far and to my knowledge none are planned at this point (hopefully this will change), so even just normal media coverage of the candidates has been far less than it was during the last campaign. One place you can find plenty of debate about this race, though, is on social media. Each has their own campaign page or pages, with supporters and trolls alike having plenty of
Mayor Stimpson. I have called Mobile home for over 20 years and I have never felt as excited about it or seen as much progress than I have the last few years. It’s been astonishing. And I just want to see that continue. No, I haven’t agreed with every single thing Mayor Stimpson and his administration has done, but even so, I believe he has earned another term. Basically if ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Both of these candidates are known quantities. We don’t have to kick the tires or lift up the hood to get to know them. They both have records that can and should be reviewed. There are dissenting opinions on who should take credit or blame for this, that or the other. Hopefully there will be a debate where each of them can be questioned about their perceived accomplishments, missteps and failures. And while I do think looking back is important, it is more critical to hear their plans for this city moving forward. Mayor Stimpson has laid out his vision through 2020, so we know where we are with him. So far all I have heard from former Mayor Jones aside from racial politics is that he doesn’t want the I-10 bridge and he wants to bring back BayFest. Jones says he thinks the bridge will make it too easy to pass right on through Mobile. Um, OK. I have never once decided to stop and visit any attractions in Atlanta when I have been sitting in their horrendous, god-awful traffic from hell. It just makes me say, “God, I hate Atlanta and I am so glad I don’t live here.” Anyone who has been in traffic on a Friday afternoon in Mobile knows that bridge is an absolute necessity, which begs the question: has the former Mayor? And no offense to BayFest, but that void has already been filled by new festivals that require far less financial commitment from the city, (which of course frees up revenue to fix more streets and hire more police and firefighters), and have formats that have evolved with the times. These are backward steps, moving in the wrong direction for all “100 percent” of us. In the words of the Black Eyed Peas in their Grammy Award-winning 2010 song “Boom Boom Pow,” former Mayor Jones, I’m sorry but you are just so “two thousand and late.” The city is moving forward under Stimpson’s leadership and we need to keep it going. Even if both of these candidates were equally perfect in every way, can you imagine the momentum suck it would be if we had to change mayors and entire adminstrative staffs right now when things are on the move? I just don’t see any good reason for it in the 2017 election. Now 2021, that’s a different story. Talk to me then.
IN ANY CASE, I HAVE TO SAY WE NEED TO FORGET ABOUT BLACK OR WHITE, RED OR BLUE AND THINK ABOUT “THE 100 PERCENT” OF US WHO LIVE IN THIS CITY. love and hate to spew. You know, like anything else on social media. I have seen comments from “supporters” on BOTH sides that make me cringe and feel depressed. I have to hope those folks are the vocal minority and just part of the fringes on each side — and the rest of us who are reading their crazy rants are all silently judging them as lunatics and are equally disgusted. There has been a lot of divisive talk about “The 52 Percent” vs. “The 48 Percent” (the racial makeup of the city) by supporters on one of Jones’ pages. And I think largely because of the presidential election, there are also pages where people seem to be working out existential crises because they hate the political party one candidate is affiliated with, but aren’t so sure about the candidate of their own party — even though this is supposed to be a nonpartisan race. Remember all politics is local. In any case, I have to say we need to forget about black or white, red or blue and think about “The 100 Percent” of us who live in this city. We are all Mobilians, no matter what we look like or who we voted for in November 2016, and we all want the same thing for our city. New businesses that are bringing in more jobs, less crime, new and improved streets, sidewalks and parks; someone who uses our tax dollars with care, who has a bold vision for our city and who gets out there and tells us what it is. To me, that’s exactly the kind of leadership we have gotten over the last four years with
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 11
COMMENTARY | THE BELTWAY BEAT
Donald Trump’s hypothetical impeachment BY JEFF POOR/COLUMNIST/JEFFREYPOOR@GMAIL.COM
or the past six months, Democrats and the media have inundated the American people with speculation and innuendo that President Donald Trump was and is involved in insidious wrongdoing. It began with allegations Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign colluded with the Russian government to steal the presidency from Hillary Clinton. Unable to prove collusion, Trump’s detractors have shifted their allegations to a possibility of obstruction of justice. If history and the current level of elite anti-Trump fervor is a guide, the allegations will likely take another form or two by the time all is said and done. Recall that former President Bill Clinton was investigated by a special counsel for the Whitewater Development Corp. real estate deal. But in the end, the probe devolved into a charge of perjury over his shenanigans with White House intern Monica Lewinsky. Congress impeached and ultimately acquitted Clinton. Rather than have history repeat itself, Trump could spare the American public three or seven more years of nonstop, breathless media pundits and politicians by demanding the Democrats put up or shut up. If Trump is under investigation for obstruction of justice, what is the end goal? A criminal prosecution? Legal scholars, including Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz, argue you cannot indict a sitting U.S. president. The Founding Fathers wrote a process for the executive’s removal into the Constitution: Impeachment. Why go outside the prescribed process? If Democrats (or some Republicans, for that matter) are so convinced Trump’s behavior rises to the level of high crimes and misdemeanors, Trump should call on them to pursue impeachment. The way impeachment works in the federal government is the House of Representatives votes on one or more articles of impeachment. If passed by the House, the process would move on to the Senate for a trial. The trial would be presided over by the chief justice of the Supreme Court, and a team of House members would play the role of prosecutor. Once the trial is complete, the Senate would vote as to whether or not the president would be removed from office. Rather than a simple majority, however, it would require a vote of at least two-thirds of the Senate for removal. It is important to remember the impeachment process is political and Democrats have been on a notable losing streak at the ballot box. Impeachment is obviously unlikely to happen with the Republicans controlling the House. Despite Democrats’ dismal election performances over the last three years, let’s pretend they can win the House in 2018. If that is the case, there is a real possibility the House would impeach Trump. To be sure, some
12 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
of the old guard will have to perform some rhetorical acrobatics to sync their positions on Clinton’s impeachment with Trump’s. Consider the leading advocate for Trump’s impeachment, Rep. Maxine Waters, Democrat of California. In 1998, shortly before the House voted to impeach Clinton, Waters called the effort a “coups d’etat,” “disregard for the voice of the people” and “one of the most despicable actions ever taken by the Congress of the United States of America.” Just as everything about Trump as a politician — his campaign and his presidency — has been unconventional, he should go against conventional wisdom and call their bluff. Trump believes he has not done anything wrong. And so far there has not been any tangible evidence to show that he has. So imagine that in a public appearance Trump dares Congress to impeach him. Would they do it? As mentioned, if the Democrats are running the House, they very well might. Given what we know now about Trump and wrongdoing, would that be enough for even a Democratically controlled House to come close to convincing the 67 senators needed to remove Trump from office? This is a Senate that can barely pass a funding bill to keep the government from shutting down. The likely outcome would be Democrats embarrassing themselves, and an ultimate acquittal. That acquittal would clear Trump’s name for the time being and likely take a political toll on the Democrats, much as it did when Republicans tried it under Newt Gingrich. And remember, this is hypothetical; the Republicans still hold both chambers. What does Trump have to lose? Does any congressperson really believe this president has done something serious enough to warrant impeachment and removal from office? Doubtful. The rhetoric and the congressional investigations are all a ruse. In part, it is being played up to keep the Democratic base energized and maintain fundraising efforts coming out of a disappointing presidential election. Trump could easily end the effectiveness of this tactic by going on the offense and daring them to try to impeach him. Not only would it solidify Trump’s base, but it would also call into question the entire purpose of the opposition party. Are Democrats in Washington, D.C., working to advance a so-called progressive agenda, or are they just looking for political points to secure their re-election bids? Without that kind of ultimatum, this is not going away. Being patient and letting the investigation play out is the Democratic Party’s code for “allow this dark cloud of uncertainty to hang over you until the 2020 campaign so we have a better chance of winning.” It is worth calling their bluff and letting the country see how it plays out.
COMMENTARY | THE GRIOT’S CORNER
Poverty, the constant foe BY KEN ROBINSON/CONTRIBUTING WRITER
overty is so common in Alabama it can be hard to see.” This oxymoronic, or seemingly selfcontradicting, statement was made by Kristina Scott, executive director of Alabama Possible, in a news release concerning the organization’s recent publication of its 2017 Alabama Poverty Data Sheet. The study is conducted and published yearly to serve as a data set and policymaking guide for state and local leaders focused on eradicating the stubborn barriers to economic prosperity and a better quality of life for many Alabamians — barriers that in our part of the country have been, unfortunately for some, passed down from generation to generation. If the American dream is to live better and more comfortably than one’s parents, for many this has never been any more than just that — a dream. The report first highlights some positive news. Alabama’s median household income is up, at $44,833, from 2016’s reported $44,765. The state’s poverty rate has declined to 18.5 percent, down from 19.2 percent the year before. In 2016, 19 Alabama counties were reported as having a poverty rate of more than 25 percent; this year that dropped to 14 counties. The state is seeing some positive movement in its fight against a formidable and persistent foe; however, there is still a ways to go. Many states have rebounded well from the economic depths of the Great Recession, yet Alabama’s recovery has been much slower, and the disparity in many categories (poverty rate, median household incomes, food insecurity, etc.) between the state and national averages is sizable.
As one of the poorest states in the nation, Alabama’s numbers are daunting and should serve as a clarion call to action. Although Alabama’s poverty rate has declined slightly, nearly 900,000 Alabamians live below the federal poverty line. Of that figure, 300,000 are children. That means more than one-fourth of the children in Alabama — 26.5 percent — live in poverty. Twelve of the 15 U.S. states with the highest child poverty rates are in the South, and Alabama is one of them. Alabama’s child food insecurity rate (a measure of multiple indications of disrupted eating patterns and reduced food intake) is 6 percentage points higher than the national average of 17.9 percent. As noted, Alabama’s median income has improved to $44,833, but still falls far short of the national average of $55,775. For African-Americans in Alabama the gap is even wider. At a median of $29,180, the average African-American family in Alabama is taking in $26,000 less than the average American family. Regionally, Alabama is not an outlier when it comes to such woeful statistics. The U.S. Census Bureau defines the South as a 17-state region inclusive of the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia (for statistical purposes, the Census Bureau also considers the District of Columbia a state and part of the South). There are definitely exceptions among these, but the data accumulated and reported by the Census Bureau and other organizations show that one constant many Southern states share is entrenched and
systemic poverty. Of the top 10 poorest states in America, nine are in the South. Much of the Sunbelt is also sadly regarded as the Poverty Belt. In the South, data show poverty is passed on from generation to generation more so than in any other part of the country. If misery loves company, when it comes to poverty Alabama has plenty of regional company. Yet, in publishing its yearly Alabama Poverty Data Sheet, the goal of Alabama Possible is not to simply remind Alabamians that we live in a state afflicted by poverty, in the midst of a region that for generations has shared in that affliction. No, the organization’s goal can be found in its name: Alabama Possible. Although the challenges are difficult, they, like many in this state, believe change is possible. It starts with education. Education has rightly been referred to as the “gateway” to upward economic mobility. States with low poverty levels and high median incomes share a common thread: high levels of education. The national college attainment rate is around 30 percent, and 17 of the states that reported having higher than average median household incomes had college attainment rates above the national average. Such states make significant investment in their K-12 education system as well. Unfortunately, according to information provided by Governing magazine, Southern states generally spend about 50 percent less per student in grades K-12 than the top-earning states. This failure to fully invest in young people serves to maintain a major barrier to upward economic mobility and prosperity. As Republican State Sen. Arthur Orr noted last year when addressing this topic, “How do we change the lives of these young people who, through no fault of their own, have been born into poverty? Education. It’s that simple.” Alabama may not be able to fund its education system at the level of a Massachusetts or a Connecticut, but it can do much better than it’s doing now. Other measures proven effective at removing the barriers to economic prosperity are: a fair and balanced tax structure; mixed-income housing designed to eliminate pockets of concentrated poverty; state funding for public transportation; and an adequate health care system. Jesus indeed said “The poor you will have with you always.” But that was not a statement advocating complacency or a lack of concern for the poor. Quite the opposite — it was a call to do what is possible to ensure those who fall into that category are as small in number as possible.
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 13
BUSINESS | THE REAL DEAL
Historic Hallett House undergoing upgrades BY RON SIVAK/COLUMNIST/BUSINESS@LAGNIAPPEMOBILE.COM
he 158 year-old Hallett House, located at 503 Government St. in downtown Mobile, directly across from Barton Academy and adjacent to the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce, was recently acquired by local real estate firm Irby LLC. The 10,000-square-foot, two-story property was built in 1859 by cotton broker Lawrence Hallett and used as a boarding house from 1900 to 1940. It was most recently owned by retired local nonagenarian Ruth Fremouw, reportedly the founder of a cosmetics company that flourished from the early 1960s until the mid-1970s. The Hallett House is also one of only three remaining historically relevant sites recognized in the area as still boasting an intact attached carriage house, currently used by a downtown law firm as office space. “Cart Blackwell with the Mobile Historic Development Commission told us that these outbuildings were originally built to house horse-drawn carriages, essentially equivalent to modern-day garages before the Industrial Revolution, followed by the advent of automobiles,” Jared Irby, owner and president of Irby LLC, said. Irby is investing an additional $20,000 in upgrades to the property with plans for possible headquarter expansion, leasing of commercial office space and/or the creation of an affiliated event-planning business in the near future. Out-of-state developers paid $1,775,000 to acquire a 21,800-square-foot industrial building located at 5640 Commerce Blvd. E. within the Mobile Commerce Park in Theodore. The property has a new five-year lease with Taylor Power Systems, according to Pete Riehm with NAI Mobile, who represented the buyers in this transaction. Gavin Bender Jr. of Bender Real Estate Group worked for the sellers. The Gym, a new locally owned fitness center offering cardio classes, standard fitness equipment and a specialized area for powerlifting training, has leased 5,900 square
14 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
feet of space at the Publix Shopping Center on Highway 98 in Daphne. Plans are in place for the facility to open this summer. Wal-Mart recently leased 10,500 square feet of industrial space at 5360 Commerce Blvd. in Mobile. The facility will be used as a local hiring headquarters for the distribution center currently under construction. Nathan Handmacher, senior executive with Stirling Properties, managed the transaction. Roughly 2,900 square feet of restaurant space located at 108 N. Section St. in Fairhope was recently leased by Washington, D.C.-based franchise Cactus Cantina. Plans are in place for the Tex-Mex style eatery to open late this summer or early fall. Kim Ward Realty handled the transaction. Tech Fix, provider of mobile repair and services, is leasing 1,050 square feet of retail space at the Shops of Schillinger, 740 S. Schillinger Road in Mobile. This marks the firm’s second Mobile location, which is scheduled to open in early July. Angie McArthur, broker associate with Stirling Properties, handled the transaction. Irby LLC recently sold the 3,200-square-foot former Arby’s restaurant property at 809 Saraland Blvd. in Saraland to an out-of-town investor for $320,000. The buyer plans to build a new restaurant at the location by the end this year, according to the company. Kevin Clarke with Infinity South Realty (an Irby LLC subsidiary) represented the seller. Matt Cummings of Cummings & Associates Inc. worked for the buyer. Some 1,640 square feet of spa space inside the Shore Oaks Center, located at 1539 U.S. Highway 98 in Daphne, was recently leased by Recovery Room Hydration Solutions. Colby Herrington with Herrington Solutions managed the transaction. Roll Up has leased 1,125 square feet of space at Dawes Plaza, located at 2410 Dawes Road in Mobile. The ice
cream store is anticipated to open later this summer. Angie McArthur with Stirling Properties managed the deal. A 6,000-square-foot residence at Dog River and recently owned by former NFL first-round draft pick, LSU standout and Williamson High School alum Jamarcus Russell was recently acquired by Irby LLC. Originally appraised at $1.2 million, the property has four boat lifts, sits on 5.2 acres of land and will be up for sale in mid-July. Per Tucker Shavers with RE/MAX Paradise, some 1.3 acres of Gulf property located at 605 W. Beach Blvd. next door to Bahama Bob’s Beach Side Café, was picked up by non-local speculators for just over $2 million to build condominiums on the site. Daniel Prickett with Prickett Properties represented the buyers in the transaction. Bluebird Pediatric Therapy Services Inc. has leased 4,303 square feet of space at the Plaza de Malaga mixed-use center at 6157 Airport Blvd. in Mobile. Nathan Handmacher with Stirling Properties represented the property owner. Brent Cumbest with Milling Commercial Realty worked for the tenant.
USA Medical Center’s Duffy recognized
Angela Duffy, assistant chief nursing officer at the University of South Alabama Medical Center, was recently selected as the 2017 honoree for the Tony Bice Memorial Golf Tournament. The event raises money for hospital burn units in Alabama including the Arnold Luterman Regional Burn Center at USA Medical Center. Duffy served more than 20 years in the hospital’s burn unit before being promoted to her current position in administration in 2015. “It is amazing that in the 12 years we have been involved, almost a quarter of a million dollars has been raised for the Arnold Luterman Regional Burn Center,” Duffy said. “We are so grateful to the organizers, the players and the companies who continue to support this worthy event.” According to Duffy, the care of burn patients presents expensive challenges to health care providers and support staff. Burn injuries can be devastating for patients and their families, and highly specialized, high-cost equipment is often crucial for successful treatment. The USA burn team is internationally recognized for research, particularly in the development of artificial skin. Staff members at the center contribute research content to numerous medical publications annually and focus on areas of burn care such as infection control, immunology, scarring and wound healing. Proceeds from the Tony Bice Memorial Golf Tournament, which is held in Hoover, also benefit Children’s of Alabama Burn Center and UAB Hospital Burn Center. More than $1 million has been raised in the 24 years the tournament has been held, according to organizers with the Alabama Fire Sprinkler Association.
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 15
FIREHOUSE SUBS ($)
HOT SUBS, COLD SALADS & CATERING 6300 Grelot Rd. • 631-3730
FIVE GUYS BURGERS & FRIES ($) $10/PERSON • $$ 10-25/PERSON • $$$ OVER 25/PERSON
COMPLETELY COMFORTABLE ALL SPORTS BAR & GRILL ($) 3408 Pleasant Valley Rd. • 345-9338
AL’S HOTDOGS ($)
CLASSIC HOTDOGS, GYROS & MILKSHAKES 4701 Airport Blvd. • 342-3243
ATLANTA BREAD COMPANY ($-$$) SANDWICHES, SALADS & MORE. 3680 Dauphin St. • 380-0444
BAKE MY DAY ($)
OLD-FASHIONED SOUTHERN BAKE SHOP 156 N. McGregor Ave. • 219-7261
BOB’S DINER ($)
GOOD OLD AMERICAN COOKING 263 St. Francis St. • 405-1497
BUCK’S DINER ($)
CLASSIC AMERICAN DINER 58 N. Secion St. Fairhope • 928-8521
CAFE 219 ($)
SALADS, SANDWICHES & POTATO SALAD 219 Conti St. • 438-5234
CAMELLIA CAFÉ ($-$$$)
CONTEMPORARY SOUTHERN FARE 61 Section St. • Fairhope • 928-4321
CAMMIE’S OLD DUTCH ($) MOBILE’S CLASSIC ICE CREAM SPOT 2511 Old Shell Rd. • 471-1710
CARPE DIEM ($)
DELI FOODS, PASTRIES & SPECIALTY DRINKS 4072 Old Shell Rd. • 304-0448
CLARK’S KITCHEN ($-$$)
SANDWICHES, SOUTHERN CUISINE & CATERING 5817 Old Shell Rd. • 343-0200
CHAT-A-WAY CAFE ($)
QUICHES & SANDWICHES 4366 Old Shell Rd. • 343-9889
BURGERS, MILKSHAKES & FRIES 4401 Old Shell Rd. • 447-2394 4663 Airport Blvd. • 300-8425 5319 Hwy 90 • 661-0071 1225 Satchel Page Dr.• 378-8768
FAMOUS CHICKEN FINGERS 29181 US Hwy 98 • Daphne • 375-1104 7843 Moffett Rd. • 607-6196 1109 Shelton Beach Rd. • 287-1423 310 S. University Blvd. • 343-0047 2250 Airport Blvd. • 479-2922 7641 Airport Blvd. • 607-7667 2558 Schillinger Rd. • 219-7761 3249 Dauphin St. • 479-2000
FOY SUPERFOODS ($) 119 Dauphin St.• 307-8997
GULF COAST EXPLOREUM CAFE ($) HOMEMADE SOUPS & SANDWICHES 65 Government St. • 208-6815
GUMBO SHACK ($-$$)
SEAFOOD & SANDWICHES 212 ½ Fairhope Ave •Fairhope • 928-4100
3869 Airport Blvd. • 345-9544 5470 Inn Rd. • 661-9117 28975 US 98 • Daphne • 625-3910
JAMAICAN VIBE ($)
MIND-BLOWING ISLAND FOOD 3700 Gov’t Blvd. Ste A • 602-1973
JERSEY MIKE’S ($)
AUTHENTIC SUB SANDWICHES 7449 Airport Blvd. • 375-1820
JIMMY JOHN’S ($)
SANDWICHES, CATERING & DELIVERY TOO 6920 Airport Blvd. • 414-5444 9 Du Rhu Dr. • 340-8694 62 B Royal St. • 432-0360
JOE CAIN CAFÉ ($)
PIZZAS, SANDWICHES, COCKTAILS 26 N. Royal St. • 338-2000
1252 Govenment St.• 301-7556
107 St. Francis St. • 415-1700 3244 Dauphin St. • 476-0320 3215 Bel Air Mall • 476-8361 4707 Airport Blvd. • 461-9933 435 Schillinger Rd. • 639-1163 1682 US HWY 98 • Daphne • 621-3215 30500 AL 181 • Spanish Fort • 621-3020
JUDY’S PLACE ($-$$)
CHICKEN SALAD CHICK ($)
PUB FOOD AND DRAFT BEERS 251 Dauphin St. • 287-6871
CHICKEN SALAD, SALAD & SOUP 2370 S. Hillcrest Rd. Unit R • 660-0501 5753 Old Shell Rd. • 408-3236 1802 US Hwy 98 Suite F• 625-1092
CHI-TOWN DAWGZ ($) CHICAGO STYLE EATERY 1222 Hillcrest Rd. • 461-6599
CONNECTION FROZEN YOGURT ($) 1880 Industrial Pkwy. • 675-2999
CREAM AND SUGAR ($)
HOME COOKING 4054 Government St. • 665-4557
LICKIN’ GOOD DONUTS ($) 3242 Dauphin St. • 471-2590
LODA BIER GARTEN ($) MAMA’S ($)
SLAP YOUR MAMA GOOD HOME COOKING 220 Dauphin St. • 432-6262
MARS HILL CAFE ($)
GREAT SANDWICHES, COFFEE & MORE 1087 Downtowner Blvd. • 643-1611
MARY’S SOUTHERN COOKING ($) 3011 Springhill Ave. • 476-2232
COFFEE, BREAKFAST, LUNCH, DESSERT 351 George St #B • 405-0003
MICHELI’S CAFE ($)
DAUPHIN ST. CAFE ($)
HOT LUNCH, DAILY MENU (INSIDE VIA) 1717 Dauphin St. • 470-5231
D’ MICHAEL’S ($)
PHILLY CHEESE STEAKS, GYROS & MORE 7101-A Theodore Dawes Rd. • 653-2979
D NU SPOT ($)
22159 Halls Mill Rd. . • 648-6522
DELISH BAKERY AND EATERY ($) GREAT DESSERTS & HOT LUNCH 23 Upham St. • 473-6115
DEW DROP INN ($)
CLASSIC BURGERS, HOTDOGS & SETTING 1808 Old Shell Rd. • 473-7872
DUNKIN DONUTS ($)
DONUTS, COFFEE & SANDWICHES 1976 Michigan Ave. • 442-4846 3876 Airport Blvd. • 219-7369 505 Schillinger Rd. S. • 442-4845 29160 US Hwy 98 • 621-2228
E WING HOUSE ($)
6358 Cottage Hill Rd. • 725-6917 AUTHENTIC IRISH PUB 101 N. Bancroft St.• 990-5100
MIKO’S ITALIAN ICE ($)
HOTDOGS SANDWICHES & COOL TREATS 3371 Dauphin Island Pkwy • 300–4015
MOMMA GOLDBERG’S DELI ($) SANDWICHES & MOMMA’S LOVE 3696 Airport Blvd. • 344-9500 5602 Old Shell Rd. • 287-6556
FRESH CARIBBEAN-STYLE FOOD & CRAFT BEER 6601 Airport Blvd. • 634-3445 225 Dauphin St. • 375-1576
MOON PIE GENERAL STORE ($)
107 St Francis St #115 • RSA Bank Trust Building
MOSTLY MUFFINS ($) MUFFINS, COFFEE & WRAPS 105 Dauphin St. • 433-9855
NEWK’S EXPRESS CAFE ($)
15 N Conception St. • 433-2299
OVEN-BAKED SANDWICHES & MORE 1335 Satchel Page Dr. Suite C. • 287-7356 7440 Airport Blvd. • 633-0096 30500 State Hwy 181 #132 • 625-6544
O’DALYS HOLE IN THE WALL ($)
195 S University Blvd. Suite H • 662-1829
EUGENE’S MONKEY BAR ($) SMALL PLATES AND CREATIVE COCKTAILS 64 S. Water St. • 438-4000
FLOUR GIRLS BAKERY ($) 809 Hillcrest Rd. • 634-2285
562 Dauphin St.• 725-6429
OLD SHELL GROWLERS ($) GROWLER STATION AND BITES 1801 Old Shell Rd. • 345-4767
16 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
PANINI PETE’S ($)
ORIGINAL SANDWICH AND BAKE SHOP 42 ½ Section St. • Fairhope • 929-0122 102 Dauphin St. • 405-0031
PAT’S DOWNTOWN GRILL ($) BAR FOOD 271 Dauphin St • 438-9585
WAREHOUSE BAKERY & DONUTS ($)
72. S. Royal St. • 432-SCAM (7226)
EXCEPTIONAL SERVICE & TASTE 271 Glenwood St. • 476-0516
WILD WING STATION ($)
INSIDE THE MOBILE MARRIOTT 3101 Airport Blvd. • 476-6400
COFFEE AND DONUTS 759 Nichols Avenue, Fairhope • 928-7223 GOURMET GRILLED CHEESE 5955 Old Shell Rd. • 287-6134 1500 Gov’t St. • 287-1526
CHICKEN FINGERS, SALAD & SANDWICHES. 1165 University Blvd. • 202-0959
THE WINDMILL MARKET ($)
POLLMAN’S BAKERY ($)
YAK THE KATHMANDU KITCHEN ($-$$)
BAKERY, SANDWICHES & MORE 750 S. Broad St. • 438-1511 4464 Old Shell Rd. • 342-8546 107 St. Francis St. Suite 102 • 438-2261
PUNTA CLARA KITCHEN ($)
FUDGE, PRALINES & MORE 17111 Scenic Hwy 98 • Fairhope • 928-8477
R BISTRO ($-$$)
334 Fairhope Ave • Fairhope • 928-2399
85 N. Bancroft St. Fairhope • 990.8883
AUTHENTIC FOODS FROM HIMALAYAN REGION 3210 Dauphin St. • 287-0115 400 Eastern Shore Center • 459-2862
BACKYARD CAFE & BBQ ($) HOME COOKIN’ LIKE MOMMA MADE. 2804 Springhill Ave. • 473-4739
REGINA’S KITCHEN ($-$$)
BAR-B-QUING WITH MY HONEY ($$)
ROLY POLY ($)
BRICK PIT ($)
ROSHELL’S CAFE ($)
COTTON STATE BBQ ($)
SANDWICHES, SUBS & SOUPS 2056 Gov’t St. • 476-2777
WRAPS & SALADS 3220 Dauphin St. • 479-2480 2906 Springhill Ave. • 479-4614
ROSIE’S GRILL ($-$$)
SANDWICHES, SOUTHWEST FARE, 7 DAYS 1203 Hwy 98 Ste. 3D • Daphne • 626-2440
ROYAL KNIGHT ($)
LUNCH & DINNER 3004 Gov’t Blvd. • 287-1220
ROYAL STREET CAFE ($) HOMEMADE LUNCH & BREAKFAST 104 N. Royal St. • 434-0011
SALLY’S PIECE-A-CAKE ($) BAKERY 5638 Three Notch Rd.• 219-6379
BBQ, BURGERS, WINGS & SEAFOOD 19170 Hwy 43 Mt. Vernon. • 839-9927 A FAVORITE BARBECUE SPOT 5456 Old Shell Rd. • 343-0001 DOWNTOWN LUNCH 101 N. Conception St. • 545-4682
DICKEY’S BARBECUE PIT ($-$$) BBQ AND MORE Jubilee Sq.Ctr. Hwy 90, Daphne • 210-2151 McGowin Park Ctr. Satchel Paige Dr. • 471-1050 7721 Airport Blvd. • 380-8957
DREAMLAND BBQ ($)
RIBS, SANDWICHES & GREAT SIDES 3314 Old Shell Rd. • 479-9898
MEAT BOSS ($)
5401 Cottage Hill Rd. • 591-4842
MOE’S ORIGINAL BAR B QUE ($)
COFFEE, SMOOTHIES, LUNCH & BEERS. 5460 Old Shell Rd. • 344-4575
BARBEQUE & MUSIC Bayfront Park Dr. • Daphne • 625-RIBS 701 Springhill Ave. • 410-7427 4672 Airport Blvd. • 300-8516
SERDA’S COFFEEHOUSE ($)
SAUCY Q BARBQUE ($)
SATORI COFFEEHOUSE ($)
COFFEE, LUNCHES, LIVE MUSIC & GELATO 3 Royal St. S. • 415-3000
SIMPLY SWEET ($)
CUPCAKE BOUTIQUE 6207 Cottage Hill Rd. Suite B • 665-3003
STEVIE’S KITCHEN ($)
SANDWICHES, SOUPS, SALADS & MORE 41 West I-65 Service Rd. N Suite 150. • 287-2793
SUGAR RUSH DONUT CO. ($) 4701 Airport Blvd. • 408-3379
SUNSET POINTE ($-$$)
AT FLU CREEK 831 N Section St. • Fairhope • 990-7766
THE BLIND MULE ($)
DAILY SPECIALS MADE FROM SCRATCH 57 N. Claiborne St. • 694-6853
THE GALLEY ($)
OPEN FOR LUNCH, INSIDE GULFQUEST 155 S. Water St • 436-8901
THE HARBERDASHER ($) 113 Dauphin St.• 436-0989
AWARD-WINNING BARBQUE 1111 Gov’t Blvd. • 433-7427
SMOKEY DEMBO SMOKE HOUSE ($)
BAY GOURMET ($$)
A PREMIER CATERER & COOKING CLASSES 1880-A Airport Blvd. • 450-9051
BRIQUETTES STEAKHOUSE ($-$$) GRILLED STEAKS, CHICKEN & SEAFOOD 720A Schillinger Rd. S. S2. • 607-7200 901 Montlimar Dr • 408-3133
CHUCK’S FISH ($$)
SEAFOOD AND SUSHI 551 Dauphin St.• 219-7051
CORNER 251 ($-$$)
HIGH QUALITY FOOD & DRINKS 251 Government St • 460-3157
THYME BY THE BAY ($-$$)
GREAT FOOD AND COCKTAILS 609 Dauphin St. • 308-3105
DOWN-HOME COUNTRY COOKIN 7351 Theodore Dawes Rd. • 654-0228 13665 N. Wintzell Ave. • 824-1119
DUMBWAITER ($$-$$$) FIVE ($$)
THREE GEORGES CANDY SHOP ($)
LOCAL INGREDIENTS 203 Dauphin St. • 690-6824
TROPICAL SMOOTHIE ($)
INVENTIVE & VERY FRESH CUISINE 6 N. Jackson St. • 433-0377
UNCLE JIMMY’S DELICIOUS HOTDOGS ($)
2550 Dauphin Island Pkwy S. • 307-5328
THE TRELLIS ROOM ($$$)
MAGHEE’S GRILL ON THE HILL ($-$$) NOBLE SOUTH ($$) NOJA ($$-$$$)
OSMAN’S RESTAURANT ($$) SUPREME EUROPEAN CUISINE 2579 Halls Mill Rd. • 479-0006
ROYAL SCAM ($$)
GUMBO, ANGUS BEEF & BAR
THAI & SUSHI 5369 D Hwy 90 W • 661-5100
THAI KITCHEN & SUSHI BAR 960 Schillinger Rd. S • 660-4470
CHINA DOLL ($)
3966 Airport Blvd.• 343-5530
CUISINE OF INDIA ($$) LUNCH BUFFET 3674 Airport Blvd. • 341-6171
FUJI SAN ($)
THAI FARE AND SUSHI 2000 Airport Blvd. • 478-9888
GOLDEN BOWL ($)
HIBACHI GRILL & ASIAN CUISINE 309 Bel Air Blvd • 470-8033
CONTEMPORARY SOUTHERN CUISINE Battle House Hotel, Royal St. • 338-5493
HIBACHI 1 ($-$$)
THE WASH HOUSE ($$)
ICHIBAN SUSHI ($)
17111 Scenic HWY 98 • Point Clear • 928-4838
A LITTLE VINO DOMKE MARKET
WINE, BEER, GOURMET FOODS, & MORE. 720 Schillinger Rd. S. Unit 8 • 287-1851
FOOD, WINE & MORE 5150 Old Shell Rd. • 341-1497
WINE BAR, CRAFT BEERS & BISTRO 6808 Airport Blvd. • 343-3555
FIREHOUSE WINE BAR & SHOP 216 St Francis St. • 421-2022
RED OR WHITE
2370 Hillcrest Rd. Unit B • 380-6062 JAPANESE & CHINESE CUISINE 3959 Cottage Hill Rd • 666-6266
KAI JAPANESE RESTAURANT ($-$$) QUALITY FOOD, EXCELLENT SERVICE 5045 Cottage Hill Rd. • 607-6454
AMAZING SUSHI & ASSORTMENT OF ROLLS. 661 Dauphin St. • 432-0109
RICE ASIAN GRILL & SUSHI BAR ($) 3964 Gov’t Blvd. • 378-8083
ROCK N ROLL SUSHI ($$)
273 S. McGregor Ave • 287-0445 6345 Airport Blvd. • 287-0555 940 Industrial Pkwy • 308-2158 6850 US HWY 98 • Daphne • 753-4367
323A De La Mare Ave, Fairhope • 990-0003 1104 Dauphin St.. • 478-9494
ROYAL STREET TAVERN
LIVE MUSIC, MARTINIS & DINNER MENU. 26 N. Royal St. • 338-2000
BISTRO PLATES, CRAFT BEERS & PANTRY 2304 Main St. • 375-2800
UPSCALE WINE BAR 9 Du Rhu Dr. S 201 • 287-7135
7 SPICE ($-$$)
ABBA’S MEDITERRANEAN CAFE ($-$$) 4861 Bit & Spur Rd. • 340-6464
ISTANBUL GRILL ($)
AUTHENTIC TURKISH & MEDITERRANEAN 3702 Airport Blvd. • 461-6901
JERUSALEM CAFE ($-$$)
MOBILE’S OLDEST MIDDLE EASTERN CUISINE 5773 Airport Blvd. • 304-1155
KAN ZAMAN ($-$$)
MEDITERRANEAN FOOD AND HOOKAH 326 Azalea Rd • 229-4206
MEDITERRANEAN SANDWICH COMPANY ($)
GREAT & QUICK. 3702 Airport Blvd. • 308-2131 274 Dauphin St. • 545-3161 2502 Schillinger Rd. Ste. 2 • 725-0126 6890 US-90 • DAPHNE • 621-2271
MINT HOOKAH BISTRO ($) GREAT MEDITERRANEAN FOOD. 5951 Old Shell Rd. • 450-9191
TP CROCKMIERS ($)
GREAT SMOOTHIES, WRAPS & SANDWICHES. Du Rhu Dr. • 378-5648 570 Schillinger Road • 634-3454
CASUAL FINE DINING 104 N. Section St. • Fairhope • 929-2219
CONTEMPORARY AMERICAN FOOD 351A George & Savannah St. • 436-8890
GREAT LUNCH & DINNER 3607 Old Shell Rd. • 445-8700
LIGHT LUNCH WITH SOUTHERN FLAIR. 226 Dauphin St. • 433-6725
TAMARA’S DOWNTOWN ($$)
KITCHEN ON GEORGE ($-$$)
HIGH QUALITY FOOD & DRINKS 251 Government St. • 432-8000
AMERICAN RESTAURANT & BAR 250 Dauphin St. • 476-1890
SEAFOOD, ASIAN & AMERICAN CUISINE 69 St. Michael St • 375-1113
OLLIE’S MEDITERRANEAN GRILL ($-$$)
TIN ROOF ($-$$)
SOUTHERN CASUAL FAMILY DINING 10800 US HWY 31 • Spanish Fort• 621-4995
VON’S BISTRO ($-$$)
DROP DEAD GOURMET
9 Du Rhu Dr. Suite 201 167 Dauphin St. • 445-3802
TIME TO EAT CAFE ($)
MODERN GASTROPUB INSPIRED BY JAPANESE KITCHEN 455 Dauphin St • 433-0376
HEALTHY, DELICIOUS MEDITERRANEAN FOOD. 3762 Airport Blvd. • 725-1177
THE SUNFLOWER CAFE ($)
33 N Section St. • Fairhope • 990-5635
3758 Dauphin Island Pkwy. • 473-1401
HIGH QUALITY FOOD WITH A VIEW 107 St. Francis St • 444-0200
INSIDE VIRGINIA’S HEALTH FOOD 3055 A Dauphin St • 479-3200
SAGE RESTAURANT ($$)
FALAFEL? TRY SOME HUMMUS
THE PIGEON HOLE ($)
SOUTHERN COOKING & THEN SOME 1716 Main St. Daphne • 222-4120
RUTH’S CHRIS STEAK HOUSE ($$$)
MEDITERRANEAN RESTAURANT & HOOKAH 1248 Hillcrest St • 634-9820 MEDITERRANEAN CAFE 1539 US HWY 98• 273-3337
FAR EASTERN FARE ANG BAHAY KUBO ($$)
6455 Dauphin St. • 433-0376 610240 Eastern Shore Blvd. • 621-9088
TASTE OF THAI ($$)
9091 US-90 Irvington • 957-1414
TOKYO JAPANESE STEAK HOUSE ($$) UPSCALE SUSHI & HIBACHI 364 Azalea Rd. • 343-6622
WASABI SUSHI ($$)
JAPANESE CUISINE 3654 Airport Blvd. S. C • 725-6078
FROM THE DEPTHS BAUDEAN’S ($$)
FRIED, GRILLED, STEAMED & ALWAYS FRESH 3300 River Rd. • 973-9070
THE BLUEGILL ($-$$)
A HISTORIC SEAFOOD DIVE W/ LIVE MUSIC 3775 Hwy. 98 • 625-1998
BONEFISH GRILL ($$)
ECLECTIC DINING & SPACE 6955 Airport Blvd. • 633-7196
BOUDREAUX’S CAJUN GRILL ($-$$) QUALITY CAJUN & NEW ORLEANS CUISINE 29249 US Highway 98 Daphne. • 621-1991
CRAVIN CAJUN/DIP SEAFOOD ($) PO-BOYS, SALADS & SEAFOOD 1870 Dauphin Island Pkwy • 287-1168
ED’S SEAFOOD SHED ($$)
FRIED SEAFOOD SERVED IN HEFTY PORTIONS 3382 Hwy. 98 • 625-1947
FELIX’S FISH CAMP ($$) UPSCALE DINING WITH A VIEW 1420 Hwy. 98 • 626-6710
FISHERMAN’S LEGACY ($) DELI, MARKET AND CATERING. 4380 Halls Mill Rd. • 665-2266
HALF SHELL OYSTER HOUSE ($)
30500 AL-181 • Spanish Fort • 206-8768 3654 Airport Blvd. • 338-9350
LUCY B. GOODE ($$)
GULF COAST CUISINE, REINVENTED 200 E. 25th Ave. • Gulf Shores • 967-5858
4513 Old Shell Rd.• 473-0007
LIVE MUSIC & GREAT SEAFOOD 200 E. 25th Ave. • Gulf Shores • 967-5858
BAMBOO STEAKHOUSE ($$)
MUDBUGS AT THE LOOP ($)
BANGKOK THAI ($-$$)
RALPH & KACOO’S ($-$$)
SUSHI BAR 650 Cody Rd. S • 300-8383
DELICIOUS, TRADITIONAL THAI CUISINE 28600 US 98 • Daphne • 626-5286 3821 Airport Blvd. • 344-9995
BANZAI JAPANESE RESTAURANT ($$) TRADITIONAL SUSHI & LUNCH. 312 Schillinger Rd. • 633-9077
CAJUN KITCHEN & SEAFOOD MARKET 2005 Government St. • 478-9897 THE SEAFOOD RESTAURANT 1595 Battleship Pkwy. • 626-0045
R&R SEAFOOD ($-$$)
LAID-BACK EATERY & FISH MARKET 1477 Battleship Pkwy. • 621-8366
RIVER SHACK ($-$$)
SEAFOOD, BURGERS & STEAKS 6120 Marina Dr. • Dog River • 443-7318.
THE GRAND MARINER ($-$$) LOCAL SEAFOOD & PRODUCE 6036 Rock Point Rd. • 443-7540
THE HARBOR ROOM ($-$$) UNIQUE SEAFOOD 64 S. Water St. • 438-4000
THE SEAFOOD HOUSE ($-$$)
HEROES SPORTS BAR & GRILLE ($) SANDWICHES & COLD BEER 273 Dauphin St. • 433-4376 Hillcrest & Old Shell Rd. • 341-9464
HURRICANE GRILL & WINGS ($-$$) WINGS, SEAFOOD, BURGERS & BEER 7721 Airport Blvd. Suite E-180 • 639-6832
ISLAND WING CO ($)
EVERYTHING BAKED OR GRILLED 2617 Dauphin St. • 476-9464
751 Azalea Rd. • 301-7964
TIN TOP RESTAURANT & OYSTER BAR ($$)
MCSHARRY’S IRISH PUB ($)
SEAFOOD, STEAKS, & EXTENSIVE WINE LIST 6232 Bon Secour Hwy County Rd. 10. • 949-5086
WINTZELL’S OYSTER HOUSE ($-$$) FRESH SEAFOOD FOR OVER 75 YEARS 605 Dauphin St. • 432-4605 6700 Airport Blvd. • 341-1111 1208 Shelton Beach Rd. • Saraland • 442-3335 805 S. Mobile St. • 929-2322
IS THE GAME ON?
ASHLAND MIDTOWN PUB ($-$$) PIZZAS, PASTAS, & CALZONES 245-A Old Shell Rd. • 479-3278
WINGS, BURGERS & PUB GRUB 6880 US-90 #14 • Daphne • 625-4695
A SOUTHERN GRILL & BAR 3673 Airport Blvd. • 344-2131
BUFFALO WILD WINGS ($) BEST WINGS & SPORTING EVENTS 6341 Airport Blvd. • 378-5955
BUTCH CASSIDY’S ($)
FAMOUS BURGERS, SANDWICHES & WINGS 60 N. Florida St. • 450-0690
CALLAGHAN’S IRISH SOCIAL CLUB ($) BURGERS & BEER 916 Charleston St. • 433-9374
1715 Main St. • 375-0543 BRILLIANT REUBENS & FISH-N-CHIPS. 101 N. Brancroft St. Fairhope • 990-5100
MUG SHOTS ($$)
BAR & GRILL 29740 Urgent Care Dr. • Daphne • 662-9639 6255 Airport Blvd. • 447-2514
Bel Air Mall • 476-2063
FRESH CUISINE NIGHTLY ON MENU 1709 Main St. • Daphne • 626-6082
HOUSE OF PIZZA ($)
3958 Snow Rd C. • Semmes • 645-3400
LA ROSSO ($$)
COMFORT FOOD 1716 Main St. Ste. C • Daphne • 281-2982
MACARONI GRILL ($$)
SMALL PLATES, PIZZAS, PASTAS & WINE 3250 Airport Blvd. • 450-4556
5055 Cottage Hill Rd. • 308-4888 2394 Dawes Rr. • 639-3535 2004 US 98 • Daphne • 265-6550
MELLOW MUSHROOM ($)
BURGERS, DOGS & 27 BEERS & WINES. 19992 Hwy.181 Old County Rd. Fairhope • 281-2663
PIES & AWESOME BEER SELECTION 2032 Airport Blvd. • 471-4700 5660 Old Shell Rd. • 380-1500 29698 Frederick Blvd.• Daphne • 621-3911
LUCKY’S IRISH PUB ($)
OLD 27 GRILL ($)
IRISH PUB FARE & MORE 3692 Airport Blvd • 414-3000
WINGS, TENDERS, HOTDOGS & SANDWICHES 312 Schillinger Rd. • 633-5877
BUCK’S PIZZA ($$)
DELIVERY 350 Dauphin St. • 431-9444
CORTLAND’S PIZZA PUB ($-$$) GREAT PIZZA. LUNCH & DINNER 4356 Old Shell Rd. • 342-0024
GAMBINO BROTHERS ($) HOMEMADE PASTAS & SANDWICHES 873 Hillcrest Ave. • 344-8115
GAMBINO’S ITALIAN GRILL ($) ITALIAN, STEAKS & SEAFOOD 18 Laurel Ave. • Fairhope • 990-0995
PASTA & MORE 9 Du Rhu Dr. • 340-6611
NAVCO PIZZA ($$)
PIZZA, SUBS & PASTA 1368 ½ Navco Rd.• 479-0066
PAPA’S PLACE ($$)
A TASTE OF ITALY. BYOB. 28691 U.S. Highway 98 • 626-1999
PINZONE’S ITALIAN VILLAGE ($$) AUTHENTIC ITALIAN DISHES 312 Fairhope Ave. • Fairhope • 990-5535
PIZZA, PASTA, SALAD & MORE 102 N. Section St. •Fairhope• 929-2525
PIZZERIA DELFINA ($) PIZZA & PASTA 107 Dauphin St. • 375-1644
ROMA CAFE ($-$$)
PASTA, SALAD AND SANDWICHES 7143 Airport Blvd. • 341-7217
ROMANO’S MACARONI GRILL ($$)
QUAINT MEXICAN RESTAURANT 5556 Old Shell Rd. • 345-7484
TAMARA’S BAR & GRILL ($)
MARIA BONITA AGAVE BAR & GRILL ($-$$)
3250 Airport Blvd. Springdale Mall• 450-4556
WINGS, PO-BOYS, BURGERS 210 Eastern Shore Center, Hwy. 98 • 929-0002
TRATTORIA PIZZA & ITALIAN ($$) ITALIAN FOOD & PIZZAS 11311 US HIghway 31 Spanish Fort• 375-0076
VIA EMILIA ($$)
HOMEMADE PASTAS & PIZZAS MADE DAILY 5901 Old Shell Rd. • 342-3677
MEXICAN CUISINE 3977 Gov’t Blvd. • 660-4970
OLÉ MI AMIGO ($-$$)
HEARTY MEXICAN FARE 736 holcombe Ave.• 473-0413
POOR MEXICAN ($)
3050 AL 181 • Spanish Fort • 621-7433
MAGNOLIA HOUSE ($$-$$$) FINE DINING, SEAFOOD AND STEAKS
FLAVORS BUFFET ($-$$) ALL YOU CAN EAT BUFFET
850 Bayview Ave. Bilox • 888-946-2847
THIRTY-TWO ($$$) SEAFOOD, STEAKS, WINE
INTERACTIVE ASIAN DINING
HIGH TIDE CAFÉ ($)
CASUAL & RELAXING, EXTENSIVE MENU
OLÉ MI AMIGO!
TASTE OF MEXICO 5452 Hwy 90 W • 661-5509
LATIN AMERICAN FOOD 211 Dauphin St. • 375-1076
TAQUERIA MEXICO ($-$$)
BEACH BLVD STEAMER ($)
CAFÉ DEL RIO ($-$$)
MOUTH WATERING MEXICAN FOOD 1175 Battleship Pkwy • 625-2722
CINCO DE MAYO ($) MEXICAN CUISINE 260 Azalea Rd. • 375-1095
DAUPHIN ST. TAQUERIA ($)
ENCHILADAS, TACOS, & AUTHENTIC FARE Ok Bicycle Shop • 661 Dauphin St. • 432-2453
EL MARIACHI ($)
763 Holcombe Ave • 473-0413
OUTSTANDING MEXICAN CUISINE 2066 Old Shell Rd. • 378-8621
HACIENDA SAN MIGUEL ($-$$) TASTE OF MEXICO 880 Schillinger Rd. S. • 633-6122 5805 US 90 • 653-9163
LA COCINA ($)
AUTHENTIC MEXICAN CUISINE 800 N Section St. • Fairhope • 990-0783 830 W I65 Service Rd. S • 378-5837 4663 Airport Blvd. • 342-5553
LOS ARCOS ($)
AUTHENTIC MEXICAN FLAVOR 3733 Airport Blvd. • 414-4496
NO GAMBLING CASINO FARE BEAU RIVAGE:
875 Beach Blvd. Biloxi • 888-952-2582
BR PRIME ($$-$$$)
3300 W. Beach Blvd. Biloxi • 877-774-8439 SEAFOOD
CARTER GREEN STEAKHOUSE ($$-$$$) RICH TRADITIONS, STEAK, SEAFOOD
C&G GRILLE ($)
LARGE BREAKFAST, LUNCH OR DINNER MENU
158 Howard Ave. Biloxi • 800-725-2239
FINE DINING ESTABLISHMENT.
BURGER, WINGS, PIZZA
PLACE BUFFET ($-$$)
EXOTIC CUISINE AND SUSHI
STACKED GRILL ($-$$)
COAST RESTAURANT ($-$$) JIA ($-$$)
STEAKS, SEAFOOD, FINE WINE INTERACTIVE ASIAN DINING
BURGERS AND EVERYTHING IN BETWEEN
TERRACE CAFE ($)
HARD ROCK CASINO:
THE DEN ($-$$)
BREAKFAST, LUNCH, DINNER, LATE NIGHT
777 Beach Blvd.Biloxi • 877-877-6256
HALF SHELL OYSTER HOUSE ($-$$) SEAFOOD
HARD ROCK CAFÉ ($)
AMERICAN FARE & ROCKIN’ MEMORABILIA
1980 Beach Blvd. Biloxi • 800-747-2839 INTIMATE & CASUAL WITH DAILY SPECIALS
ELEGANT ATMOSPHERE & TANTALIZING ENTREES
LOUNGE WITH COCKTAILS & TAPAS MENU
RUTH’S CHRIS STEAK HOUSE ($$$)
WIND CREEK CASINO:
EXCEPTIONAL SERVICE & TASTE SOUTHERN FAVORITES BUFFET
HARRAH’S GULF COAST:
280 Beach Blvd. Biloxi • 288-436-2946
303 Poarch Rd. Atmore • 866-946-3360 PRIME STEAKS, SEAFOOD & WINE
CONTEMPORARY & OLD-FASHIONED FAVORITES
SEND LISTINGS TO LISTINGS@LAGNIAPPEMOBILE.COM
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 17
CUISINE THE REVIEW P. F. CHANG’S CHINA BISTRO 3201 AIRPORT BLVD., #A-10 MOBILE 36606 251-476-4433
P.F. Chang’s stands the test of time BY ANDY MACDONALD/CUISINE EDITOR
t’s rare that I’m afforded the opportunity to review a restaurant that can be deemed “a chain,” but that’s exactly what happened this week. There was a toss-up over which of the two higher-end eateries that recently found footing in our Shoppes at Bel Air to review. Neither are your typical “mom and pop” stores. It was either going to be Grimaldi’s Pizza or P.F. Chang’s. I was up for either. My dining companions, however, enjoyed pizza for lunch so we limped the 30 or so feet westward to our Asian option. It’s been so long since I visited a P.F. Chang’s. The last time I set foot in one was maybe 16 or 17 years ago somewhere close to Irvine, California, when I worked a two-year stint in Orange County. I remember it being pretty good, maybe in an open mall-type setting, but I do recall enjoying it. In recent years I’ve noticed frozen P.F. Chang products in the grocery stores, leading me to think, “Wow, these guys have really made the big time.” Big time can mean many things — including, but not limited to, a slip in quality for mass production. Fingers crossed that would not be the case tonight. It was a boys’ night without my boys. In between rain showers and flood alerts, Rob and his son, Ulysses, managed to pick me up for a 6:30 p.m. dinner. I was looking to unwind from a particularly stressful day and was in need of some good company. The silvertongued, quick-witted, trash-talking teen Ulysses is as much of a stress relief as he is a source of stress. He can be quite entertaining. I gave everyone the choice of an entrée and I ordered the rest. When you go to P.F. Chang’s you have to try the Chicken Lettuce Wraps ($9.50). Leaves of iceberg form the pocket for this build-your-own appetizer (listed under the Street Fare portion of the menu) as you scoop nutty chunks of chicken made from a secret family recipe. Consider this one of their signature dishes. I love things as simple as this. It was quite good. Off to a stellar start, the three of us each placed an entrée order knowing the dishes would be served family style and we’d all get a taste. I also ordered a sushi roll to get a better idea of just what we were dealing with here. In minutes the main courses were on our table, long plates with large, healthy portions. I’d have preferred the sushi come out with the appetizers but our server neglected to place the order. He owned up to his mistake and it was out in a couple of minutes.
WORD OF MOUTH
Turnover at Rosie’s Grill, Gumbo Shack BY ANDY MACDONALD Harry and Alissa Johnson, owners of Rosie’s Grill on Highway 98 in Daphne, are closing the doors June 30. The building has been leased to Jeremiah Matthews, executive chef of Jesse’s in Magnolia Springs. If you’re familiar with Jesse’s, you know we have something to look forward to. Called South Wood Kitchen, this will be Matthews’ first restaurant and quickly replace Rosie’s, with plans to open in August. But the Johnsons are not resting on their laurels. They are purchasing the Gumbo Shack in downtown Fairhope and replacing it with their own El Camino Taco Shack, which will feature some of Rosie’s fresh Mexican menu items. Expect the Shack to be open before Labor Day.
Photos | P.F. Chang’s
With dishes such as chicken lettuce wraps, Sichuan beef, Kung Pao chicken and sushi, P.F. Chang’s serves authentic Chinese food and Asian cuisine at The Shoppes at Bel Air. I’d chosen Walnut Shrimp with Melon ($17.95), our only true seafood dish. Served with my choice of white rice, the toughest part was getting a walnut, melon and shrimp in the same bite, but when you managed to do so it was pretty stellar. I couldn’t make out the pale sauce but it was slightly sweet, with the tangy flavor of the melon (honeydew?) complementing the savory shrimp and walnuts. Ulysses was all about the Kung Pao Chicken ($15.95). This is my test of anything Chinese. Heavy on the red chili peppers and Sichuan sauce, this version was all peanuts and green onions offsetting the chicken. Forget the mountains of veggies you normally find at the “order by number” places. This was more focused. We all approved. It was Rob who was the wisest of the three (don’t get used to me saying that), ordering the Korean Chicken Stir-Fry ($14.95). This dish really imparted that Korean flavor I love with a good amount of red peppers, onion, green beans, sweet chili sauce and kimchi slaw. If I return anytime soon this will be my order. Better with the brown rice than the white, I found the flavor remarkable and the vegetables pleasantly not overdone. Our belated sushi was in the form of the Kung Pao Dragon Roll ($10.95). This one is a California roll topped with seared ahi tuna, Sriracha, tempura crunchies and peanuts. Rob and I had a good time watching Ulysses fumble with the chopsticks, poking and stabbing
Additions at Manci’s
Don’t panic, everyone. Manci’s is still Manci’s. You can’t take away an Old Towne Daphne mainstay like that. It was an oddly worded Facebook post that had some of you in a fit. The facts: The third room of Manci’s will become Buster’s Brick Oven Wine and Spirits. This will be a hot spot for small plates, wine, handcrafted cocktails and the like. You’ll still be able to get your burgers next door.
Bay Bites announces festival
We have a date for Mobile Baykeeper’s Bay Bites Food Truck Festival! This year’s event is slated for Wednesday, July 26, from 5-8 p.m. at Cooper Riverside Park. The event will be similar to last year’s. Expect eight or nine trucks to feed 1,000-plus
18 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
and almost cursing the target but finally getting a couple pieces into his mouth. Yes, there is better sushi in this town but it wasn’t bad. As a matter of fact none of it was bad, as the three of us pretty much scraped our plates clean. If P.F. Chang’s has gotten too big for its britches then it must be in a good way. Making a home in a mall in Mobile is something we should be happy about. I’d say the food is not too shabby. The downside is it may be a little pricey for what you’re getting. There was a little bit of sticker shock for a Wednesday night dinner for three, but to be fair we weren’t bashful when ordering. A lot of you complained when P.F. Chang’s first opened — stories of food being comped because of long wait times, perhaps due to undertrained staff, logistics and the sheer popularity of the opening month. I’d say they have worked out those kinks, which is why I’m not the first in line to any new establishment. When we left our table two pairs of chopsticks fell out of Ulysses’ pants. Apparently he felt his skills were inferior enough that he needed to take some home to practice. I added a little to the tip, so no one was hurt. I think P.F. Chang’s holds up as well as it did 15 years ago. Don’t be skittish about mall dining. With a full bar you may need this place come holiday season, when your wife asks you to hold her purse. I hear the pizza joint 30 or so feet eastward is pretty good, too.
guests. Expect craft beer from Sweetwater Brewing, a dunking booth, corn-hole, face painting, games and live music by Roadside Glorious. Tickets are available at www.mobilebaykeeper.org for $15 in advance and $20 at the gate. This includes three drink tokens (beer or coke products). Proceeds will benefit Mobile Baykeeper’s efforts for clean water, clean air and healthy communities. We will keep you posted as more information becomes available.
MaGhee’s honored by Epicureans
The Epicureans Dining Club of Mobile/ Baldwin Counties selected MaGhee’s Grill on the Hill as Restaurant of the Year for the 2016-17 season. The decision came from a dining event held back in February. The organization boasts more than 70 members and has been in existence 23 years.
The award is based on a critique rating by members at each of their 12 events. Congratulations, MaGhee’s Grill on the Hill.
Oishi gets big buzz
This one came out of nowhere, but Facebook just exploded with people talking about Oishi Japanese Sushi Bar and Grill at 23000 Town Center Ave., Spanish Fort. If the pictures do it justice, I will hastily make my way to the new hot spot just behind Bass Pro Shops. My friend Carlos Danger is a sushi lover if ever I’ve seen one, and is begging me to go. The menu looks amazing and the word Carlos keeps using is “extensive,” describing the options for rolls, Nigiri, sashimi, noodles and hibachi. I trust his judgment. Let me know what you think. Recycle!
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 19
Group homes: A new normal in mental health care JASON JOHNSON/REPORTER
hen police raesponded to a disturbance in Bienville Square the morning of Ash Wednesday, the 25-year-old special-needs woman they found there was unable to tell officers why she was naked or that she’d been forcefully raped outside of her hotel hours earlier. When her family filed a lawsuit on her behalf, they claimed the woman was sexually assaulted after residents from Agape House — a group home in Axis — had allegedly been “uprooted” and put up in a room in a downtown hotel so the owners and staff “could party during Mardi Gras.” While the facts about the events leading up to her assault are still disputed, the incident shed light on a system of adult care that has become the last option for many seeking mental health care in a state that continues to reduce funding for it. “We have added additional group homes to our continuum of care indefinitely as a part of the downsizing and closure of Searcy Hospital,” AltaPointe Performance Improvement Director Sherrill Alexander said. “We have more group homes than we did before because we had to do that to meet the community’s needs.” While the term “group home” can be loose, Alexander applies it to those certified through the Alabama Department of Mental Health (ADMH), which has approved, reviewed and inspected hundreds of locations housing mentally or developmentally disabled patients throughout Mobile County. Though it lost its certification in April — after the incident downtown — Agape House used to be included among them. Because it isn’t a clinical hospital setting, patients in these homes have to meet a certain level of functionality to ensure they’re capable of cohabitation and don’t pose a danger to the communities they live in. For those who don’t, though, there are often few options left. Many end up in local hospitals or in Mobile County Metro Jail, which has already expanded its capacity to handle mentally ill inmates. Others, however, find residence in unlicensed group homes that operate without any certification and with no oversight from the state of Alabama.
According to ADMH, a certified group home can serve three patient populations — those with mental illnesses, those with developmental disabilities (formerly known as mental retardation) and those with substance abuse problems. Combining all three categories, ADMH has performed more than 331 “community service provider”
20 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
site inspections in Mobile County, 88 of which were for places serving mental patients. A “community service provider” is a residential location that receives money from ADMH — often through Medicaid or Supplemental Security Income — for housing individual patients who fit one of ADMH’s three certification categories. Prospective providers go through a multi-step licensing application process starting with a $10 certification orientation course outlining the process. After that, a lengthier, in-person orientation is required. A printable “certificate” is offered for completing those courses, even though the authority to operate a group home still requires a background check, a site inspection, a review of qualifications and a $1,500 application fee. Eleanor Tolbert oversees all of the ADMH-certified homes serving developmentally disabled patients in Mobile County. She said the qualifications for staff members at those agencies can vary depending on the extent of services provided. ADMH requires specific training for direct care staff who work with residents on a daily basis and for nurses employed by those providers. In homes designated for the mentally ill, though, the requirements are more stringent — one of the reasons most of the certified agencies locally are operated or subcontracted through AltaPointe or Volunteers of America. AltaPointe staffs and manages 22 group homes falling into that category, but also subcontracts to private owners who serve “seriously mentally ill consumers” in several residential locations. Alexander referred to those as “foster homes.” Group homes like those are subcontracted through AltaPointe because of “the way the system is set up” in Alabama, according to Alexander, who said AltaPointe is essentially a “pass-through” for funding because it serves most of the area’s mental health patients, including those residents. “ADMH would not give funding directly to those community providers,” she added. “It has to come through AltaPointe, as we are the [state licensed provider] for the community.” Alexander said residents qualified to reside in those homes have “a serious mental illness” or “some area of confusion with daily living skills.” They also have to be willing to stay there, as all of AltaPointe’s homes are voluntary admission facilities. “One of the main objectives is trying to keep them out of the hospital,” Alexander said. “Quite a large percentage of those consumers who live in group homes, if
they’re not in a stable living environment, will end up in the hospital, which is a more costly level of care.” Volunteers of America Southeast CEO Wallace Davis said, like AltaPointe, VOA contracts with outside agencies to provide services in some of its group homes, though it also runs several directly. According to ADMH data, VOA operates or subcontracts more than 25 locations, housing patients with mental illness or developmental disabilities in area homes and apartments. “We have been providing services to individuals with developmental disabilities since 1980, and we’ve grown to become one of the largest, if not the largest, provider of services in residential settings in Alabama,” Davis said. “We’re proud of that.”
Unlicensed group homes
Given their prevalence, keeping up with licensed group homes is challenging enough, but tracking unlicensed group homes — commonly referred to as boarding homes — can be next to impossible. Even when an unlicensed facility is identified, taking action can be an arduous process that often falls between the cracks of regulatory authorities and law enforcement. However, those in the industry say there’s no doubt several unregulated facilities are operating in Mobile. “That’s a continuous thing all the time,” Alexander said. “Some of these boarding homes may not necessarily have people residing there who are mentally ill, or they may be mixed in with mentally ill people in some cases, but there’s a lot going on out there.” Dr. Walter Geary, director of health bureau standards at the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH), said the issue is complicated because so much of what is or isn’t legal depends on what services a boarding home offers. Facilities with mental patients fall under the purview of ADMH and require a license. Facilities that — like nursing homes — assist with residents’ medication, feeding and grooming require a license from ADPH. Geary said figuring out what services an unmonitored facility offers is “an enormous effort,” often requiring surveyors to obtain a search warrant just to get started. “In most states, it’s the police that go after them, but not in Alabama. Police here are only interested if there’s crime or theft of substantially more money than residents are paying in room and board,” Geary said. “We have to find time for our surveyors — which there are only seven of for 30-plus licensed facilities — to stop investigating complaints so we can send them out to a suspected unlicensed facility to start an investigation.” Despite the challenge, ADPH has successfully shut down facilities under laws governing the operation of hospitals in Alabama. The most recent case involved a facility in Clarke County that was shut down last July, though a local facility was driven out of business as recently as 2008. Cuddle Sitting Care, which was operated by Felisha N. Wright in Irvington, was shut down amid an ADPH investigation after the state fire marshal ordered its closure and removal of residents when “serious violations of fire safety rules” were discovered. Other than the fact that hundreds of legally operated facilities spend the time and money to comply with the requirements of maintaining a state license, Geary said unlicensed facilities can pose an immediate danger to residents, even when their owners’ intentions are good. A particular case that stuck with Geary occurred in St. Clair County, where ADPH filed a lawsuit to shut down a group home housing nine elderly patients in two trailers. Because the owner’s lawyer was the son of the judge who wound up hearing the case, it was initially delayed. A hearing was rescheduled in front of a new judge, but two weeks before that date, the April 27, 2011, tornado outbreak hit St. Clair County — killing four residents, the owner, his daughter-in-law and his 7-year-old grandchild. Despite the concern over group homes dodging state regulations, Geary said he understands that many of their residents have few resources and few options.
COVER STORY “There is a terrible need for assisted living facilities for those who can’t afford $3,500 to $4,000 a month to live in a licensed facility, but you have to have locks on the doors. You have to have fire alarms,” he said. “Some of these unlicensed places, they charge $650 a month or whatever a person gets from Social Security and they’re done.” “Right now, I don’t have an answer for people who only have $600 or $700 a month,” he added. It’s unclear how many unlicensed facilities there might be in Mobile County today, but a basic Google search will turn up a number of “group homes” with no history of licensure. However, a Lagniappe investigation recently revealed one private operator in Mobile never obtained a license from the state before setting up multiple group homes in residential areas. By Faith Independent Living or By Faith Living Transitional Housing is owned and operated by Meoshi “Shonta” Nelson. Based on Nelson’s posts on social media, she opened her first home in 2013 after completing the ADMH “prospective community provider certification orientation.” Sharing a picture of the printable “certificate” ADMH provides, Nelson wrote, “I’m certified and been through my training.” However, those certificates only indicate the completion of the ADMH orientation courses — a one-hour online course and a six-hour, in-person orientation. However, posts to Nelson’s public Facebook account and a since-deleted account for the business indicate at least nine homes were being operated under the By Faith name as recently as May, though Alexander said this month there could be “as many as 11.” “There are some facilities that seek her out, but AltaPointe is not one of them,” Alexander said. “I think the majority of [those patients] may be mentally ill or have intellectual disabilities, but if it’s a boarding home, she does not have certification through ADPH.” In her own posts describing the services By Faith offers, Nelson wrote that the homes specialize “in the mentally ill and elderly” and those with “behavior disabilities.” She has also mentioned a “total care house” serving patients that need some assistance with “bathing” or “medication.” Through property tax records and court files, Lagniappe was able to identify five addresses associated with Nelson’s homes; according to ADMH, it hasn’t provided authorization to operate a facility at any of them. By Faith is also not listed among the licensed assisted living or specialty care facilities regulated by ADPH. One of the only available records pertaining to Nelson’s business activities is a license for a By Faith Cleaning Service LLC filed with the Alabama Secretary of State’s office in 2010. That business was also central to federal fraud charges that Nelson pleaded guilty to in 2015. In a plea agreement, Nelson admitted to fraudulently claiming lost income from By Faith Cleaning after the BP oil spill and to at least assisting with other fraudulent claims submitted in the names of her daughter, sister, sister-in-law and former husband. She was sentenced to five years’ probation and ordered to pay $122,900 in restitution. Nelson declined multiple requests to speak with Lagniappe about the nature of her business, and when reached by phone said, “I would prefer you not to publish anything.”
Trouble in the neighborhood
While the sexual assault of the Agape House resident may have been the most highprofile recent incident involving a local group home — licensed or otherwise — others have occurred this year. On Feb. 23, less than a week before the reported sexual assault, a group home resident ran away from her caretakers during a doctor’s visit on Springhill Avenue. The Mobile Police Department identified the resident as Natasha Williams, a “mentally challenged” 29-year-old who “suffers from a personality disorder and is prone to hurting herself.” Williams was found the following day, though MPD declined to release the name of the facility that was caring for Williams at the time and couldn’t confirm whether or not it was licensed. The Mobile County Sheriff’s Office had its own run-in with a local group home in April when, according to MCSO, staff members from Bayou Oaks Foster Care Facility in Satsuma dumped several used medical items into an MCSO prescription drug drop-off bin. MCSO spokesperson Lori Myles said DEA guidelines require certain protocols for disposing of medical waste that were not followed by the staff, and that personal information about residents had been dropped into the box including “patient care charting sheets,” prescription information and “one patient’s explanation of Social Security benefits with the amounts highlighted. “Also in the bags was medical waste such as used face masks, gloves, gauze, used diabetic lancets and three used syringes,” Myles added. Intended for the disposal of unused prescriptions, the drop-off was built inside an old bank deposit slot, which deputies reach into in order to remove the contents. Myles said it puts their staff at risk when something like a used syringe is improperly placed in the box. Myles said correspondence was sent to AltaPointe, which subcontracts Bayou Oaks to manage at least two of its foster homes, and there hasn’t been a similar incident since. When asked, Alexander downplayed AltaPointe’s involvement the incident. “The people in those homes are not AltaPointe employees,” she said. “They’re responsible for that home. They hire the staff, provide all services and provide for customers that live there.” However, the amount of liability agencies like AltaPointe have when incidents occur in their subcontracted group homes is one of the key issues in the lawsuit filed over the March 1 sexual assault reported after Mardi Gras. While the suit accuses Agape House and owners Rodney and Shetecia Chastang of “negligence” and “wantonness,” it also names as defendants AltaPointe — the victim’s case manager — and VOA, which subcontracted services from Agape House. According to the ADMH website, Agape House LLC was certified through VOA in 2008 following a “deemed” visit, which occurs when “DMH accepts a certification, license or accreditation issued by another recognized state or national organizations in lieu of an additional review through the DMH certification process.” In April, the Mobile County District Attorney’s office launched a criminal investigation into “the entire situation” including the sexual assault and whether there was any criminal liability on the part of the victim’s caregivers. While no charges have been filed, the civil suit is still pending. Representatives for AltaPointe and VOA declined to comment on the lawsuit as did attorneys for Agape Ministries Inc. and the victim’s family. J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 21
Family, land form artistic foundation BY KEVIN LEE/ARTS EDITOR/KLEE@LAGNIAPPEMOBILE.COM
t’s easy to see where artist Lisa Johnston Hancock’s concerns originate. It’s an hour north of Mobile, where rural seclusion spawned reflection. “My thesis show for graduate school was based on our property, our land that’s been in our family a long time, in Leroy. Just kind of walking through the forest there and our connection to the land and all the families that had lived on the land since the 1920s,” Hancock said. Those deep ties bear an innate link with the natural world. The sensibilities they generate are evident in her July exhibit at Mobile Arts Council’s “Inner Transcendence” exhibit. “It shows our connection to our environment and this feeling you get when you’re out in the forest, especially at sunset or sunrise … there’s something just so magical,” Hancock said. The show’s watercolors display varied ecosystems, wetlands and woods contained within the silhouettes of people and animals. There are turtles, falcons, children, quail, owls and turkeys. Rarity is an emphasis, such as with the cerulean warbler, a bird whose numbers are falling faster than any other warbler in the nation. “The peregrine falcon — I used a forest theme with warm tones that almost looks like the forest is burning. It’s actually sunset and just goes with the color scheme I chose. I wanted the peregrine to be sort of molding into its environment, disappearing, reappearing, since they’re threatened in our area,” Hancock said. When Artifice spoke with Hancock, she had about a dozen of the watercolors ready but was still trying to complete more before they are due for hanging. Her
Vintage postcards at USA museum
opening reception isn’t until July 14, but she has business on the West Coast the week beforehand. Hancock and writer Meggan Haller will be in Los Angeles to pitch a collaborative children’s book titled “Night Owl.” It took the artist nearly two years, by her estimate, to produce the 30 illustrations well-suited to her avian proclivities. “The owl flies through most of the book and stops and talks to different birds — like, he meets a peacock and the peacock fans his high-fashion feathers and the owl wasn’t chic because he just has grey and white feathers. And he meets the stork and the stork is so tall but he doesn’t have that height because barn owls are small,” Hancock described. The owl learns to appreciate his unique capabilities suited for silently sailing through the luminous moonlight while the other birds sleep. For kids who crave identification or value, the importance is apparent. “I have one small connection with someone at a publisher so I’m at least going to try and go shake their hand,” Hancock said. Appropriately enough, that publisher is Penguin. Hancock didn’t hone her skills in Leroy. She earned a bachelor’s degree at the University of Alabama, then headed abroad with a New York University program in Madrid. A few years later she earned her MFA at Savannah College of Art and Design. Not long after her 2006 graduation she was in the Azalea City helping curate the Mobile Museum of Art’s impressive “Generation X: Post Boomers of the South” show. She’s filled adjunct positions at the University of
22 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
HANCOCK AND WRITER MEGGAN HALLER WILL BE IN LOS ANGELES TO PITCH A COLLABORATIVE CHILDREN’S BOOK TITLED “NIGHT OWL.” IT TOOK THE ARTIST NEARLY TWO YEARS, BY HER ESTIMATE, TO PRODUCE THE 30 ILLUSTRATIONS WELL-SUITED TO HER AVIAN PROCLIVITIES.” Her excitement spilled forth when she talked about exploring tidal pools in the Pacific Northwest and the lushness of temperate rainforests. Points north beckoned, too. “We just got back from the Seward area, Glacier Bay and the Kenai Peninsula, with Alaska Wildlife Adventures in Kenai National Refuge and it was amazing. It took some getting used to because it was so much cooler than here but once we did it was tough to come back to the humidity. It’s like a real slap in the face,” she laughed. Roots are hard to sever, though. “Our family’s here so we’re not going anywhere,” Hancock said.
Museum hours are Tuesday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, call 251-460-6106.
History museum launches Fun Fridays
On select Fridays through July, the History Museum of Mobile (111 S. Royal St.) will offer fun educational activities for children ages 5-10. Each session costs $5 per person and includes museum admission. Reservations are recommended as class sizes are limited for each one-hour time slot. The June 30 Fun Friday 10 a.m. and 11 a.m. sessions will show participants the “Faces of Africa” exhibit, where kids can learn about African masks. The group will then make their own masks based on ideas and themes from the ceremonial garb they viewed. Participants are welcome to tour the museum afterward. For more information, call 251-301-0270.
Fill the day with MMoA
Duck out of the heat and rain by spending Thursday, June 29, at the Mobile Museum of Art (4850 Museum Drive). The price is perfect, with free admission on Thursdays. At 3 p.m. the movie “Surviving Picasso” will be shown, the latest in MMoA’s summer film series. The flick starring Anthony Hopkins, Natascha McElhone and Julianne Moore covers the tale of Francoise Gilot, the only one of Picasso’s lovers with the strength to stand up against his notorious cruelty. This movie is rated R for nudity and dialogue. Attendees must be 16 or accompanied by an adult. At 6 p.m. Richard McCabe, curator of photography at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art in New Orleans, will discuss photography and its application by Alabama artists. McCabe curated MMoA’s Contemporary Alabama Photography exhibit on display through Aug. 27. For more information, call 251-208-5200.
Alabama native Wade Hall spent a half-century in Kentucky but in his heart he never left home. The teacher, writer and folklorist amassed a collection of nearly 400 vintage souvenir postcards depicting various Alabama sights — such as Birmingham’s Vulcan and Mobile’s Bellingrath Gardens — from previous centuries. Since Hall’s 2015 death, the collection has been the joint property of two state colleges. Troy University has developed a pair of traveling exhibits based on the postcards that will appear at the University of South Alabama Archaeology Museum (6052 USA Drive, S.) through July 24. One exhibit focuses on “main” streets in Alabama towns and cities. The other concentrates on historical buildings, including courthouses, post offices, schools and churches. Most of the postcards range from the early 1900s to the 1960s.
South Alabama and taught classes at MMoA. Before long she’ll be teaching a class at the newly opened Marnée’s Studio but it took something more generational to bring a notable change. “I used to just work primarily in oils and mixed media; then, when I had children, I couldn’t really do that because they get into everything. I switched to watercolor and it works well with what I can accomplish in the short amount of time I have during the day and at night,” Hancock laughed. Those kids figure large in this new show. The silhouettes of children are drawn from them, a tie into Hancock’s wishes for their personal futures and the world they’ll inhabit. Her fascination with exploring that larger world is abundant. Proximity to family means kids can stay with grandparents while Hancock and her husband find adventure.
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 23
he Azalea City’s army of hiphop artists is one of the richest aspects of the local music scene. Mobile is populated with numerous up-and-coming emcees and producers with an abundance of passion for their music. For local artist Charod Jones, hip-hop has become a way of life. Over the years, hip-hop artists such as Outkast and 2Pac kindled within Jones a passion to explore the music world. The would-be rapper began to hone his skills while establishing a personal ideology that pushed him forward. Jones began to see hip-hop as a form of personal expression, allowing him to transport his listeners into his reality. This ideology brought the realization that hip-hop was more than just a simple musical genre. “It’s the freedom of expression,” Jones said. “I think hip-hop is dope because you can paint whatever picture that you want to paint. The canvas is
BY STEPHEN CENTANNI/MUSIC EDITOR/SCENTANNI@LAGNIAPPEMOBILE.COM
Charod Jones’ ‘Destiny,’ live and in studio more than 12 hours, Jones says the duo developed a bond. The power of Jones’ words inspired Rosco’s arrangements. Eventually, Rosco also began to relate to the tracks on “Destiny” on a more personal level, which fulfilled Jones’ goal of connecting with his listeners. “The beautiful thing about it, and [Rosco will] tell you, he believes that he’s living my album right now,” Jones said. “Some of the things that I talk about, he’s experiencing it right now. I think that helped play a part in him trying to perfect the sound, because he has such a connection with what I was saying that he wanted to make it his own. I think he did a good job of that. It was a good marriage between my lyrics and his artistry.” In addition to Rosco, Jones also brought a cavalcade of special guests from the local scene. Fellow artist/longtime friend Elijah McCreary laid down a track and assisted with the album’s production. The inclusion of Courtney Mason, Tony P., Lady Lyrick, Cherrell, Jamie Mitchell,
I tell people that trying to put me in a box is like pouring water in a file cabinet. It will come out in some sort of way. I wanted to use this album as a platform for everybody to get their shine on.
free, and it’s a broad brush that you can paint with. You can convey your message in a lot of artistic and different ways.” Recently Jones completed his debut album “Destiny,” a collection of invigorating, homegrown rhythms and rhymes setting new standards for the Mobile hip-hop scene. However, the most impressive aspect of “Destiny” may be its production value. Jones credits a local producer known only as Rosco (Hippo Meat Productions) for making the portrait more vivid. “I believe in not putting anything or people in a box,” Jones said. “I’m an Aquarius, so I tell people that trying to put me in a box is like pouring water in a file cabinet. It will come out in some sort of way.” Most hip-hop artists choose to bed lyrics upon electronically generated tracks, a method used by a majority of local artists of the genre. Instead, Jones and Rosco opted to use live instrumentation to accent Jones’ poetry. Rosco himself was responsible for performing all instrumental tracks on “Destiny.” Jones describes his time in the studio with Rosco as more of a journey than a process. Even though he admits the two did not always agree, Jones says he gave Rosco full creative license in creating the instrumental accompaniment. As the two went through sessions that sometimes lasted
Daniel Davis, Squaretite and Chyna B. Jones in what Jones describes as an “all-star cast” was not without purpose. As he promotes his own music, he hopes the artists featured on “Destiny” will also draw new listeners. “I told them that I was going to be the DJ Khaled of Mobile,” Jones said. “I wanted to use this album as a platform for everybody to get their shine on. I think we did a good job. We put the work in.” Jones has produced an album that combines lyrical prowess with Dirty South attitude. Jones says “Toy Box,” with its smooth jazz grooves, is the album’s most popular song to date. This metaphorical track draws from Jones’ personal experience and that of others (both male and female) to create a conversation on the nature of relationships. Sometimes people play with toys, and other times they are the toys. Jones says it depends on which side of the toy box the person stands. “You may have an admirer that you take for granted, male or female,” explained Jones. “In the end, you may not give them the attention that they want, because you may not feel the same way that they do.” “Turned Tables” maintains a deep bounce interrupted by rhythmic and lyrical breaks as Jones lays out a testimony ripe with philosophy. The track takes on the air of a sermon as Jones preaches the
24 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
Local hip-hop artist Charod Jones released his debut album, “Destiny,” with a little help from his friends. ways of karma. He says life can deliver situations and personal interactions, both positive and negative. His advice for dealing with both is to maintain a consistency in reaction. Jones says taking this attitude has allowed him to grow personally and artistically. “The blessing is not to act the same as people who had you down and tried to destroy you,” Jones said. “You make that table turn and keep it in your favor. The way you do that is by not trying to get revenge or be spiteful. You keep it moving. I’ll never go to a different level, if I’m still trying to turn the tables and focused on getting you back. If I feel like I’ve been wronged, then that’s not where my opportunity comes from.” With “Destiny” at hand for this local up-and-comer, Jones has been busy promoting the album both online and in the clubs. Locals got a big taste of this album at a recent release party at Levelz Bar & Lounge. Jones compared the release of “Destiny” to giving someone a Christmas present. He cannot wait to see people’s reaction to his first effort. So far, he has been more than happy with the response he’s gotten from. “We were satisfied with the work that we put in. It was multiple nights of falling asleep in the studio and working so hard to perfect the sound. We walked away from it knowing that we gave our all to it. We were excited, and we’re still excited. The response has been absolutely incredible, and I’m thankful for it.”
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 25
Don’t stop believin’
BY STEPHEN CENTANNI/MUSIC EDITOR/SCENTANNI@LAGNIAPPEMOBILE.COM
Band: Journey, Asia Date: Thursday, June 29, 7:30 p.m. Venue: The Amphitheater at The Wharf Tickets: $39.50-$100.50, available through Ticketmaster This beachside flashback is a must for fans of ‘80’s music. British prog rockers Asia will open the evening. With some of the most unique album art in rock history, Asia began its worldwide campaign with its self-titled debut. “Heat of the Moment” served as the band’s first hit and remains in steady rotation on mainstream radio. Asia nurtured a dedicated following that appreciates the epic grandeur of its unique style of rock. While the modern production is evident in its most recent effort, 2014’s “Gravitas,” Asia maintains the regal orchestrations that showcase its prog rock style. Since its beginning, Journey’s West Coast rock sounds has found a new audience with each generation. Over the past few years, hits such as “Lights” and “Don’t Stop Believing” have helped this band find a place in the hearts of millennials. The group is dominated by Journey vets Neal Schon (lead guitar), Ross Valory (bass guitar), Steve Smith (drums) and Jonathan Cain (keyboard). Based on his uncanny ability to perform Journey’s classic vocals, Schon recruited lead singer Arnel Pineda in 2008. Get ready for one of the Gulf Coast’s biggest singalongs ever.
Photo/ journeymusic.com | Journey
Hotlanta Band: Elements Hip-Hop Showcase Date: Friday, June 30, with doors at 9 p.m. Venue: The Merry Widow, 51 S. Conception St., www.themerrywidow.net Tickets: $8 advance/$10 day of show, available through Ticketfly
Band: Kate Kelly Date: Thursday, July 6, 7 p.m. Venue: Callaghan’s Irish Social Club, 916 Charleston St., www.callaghansirishsocialclub.com Tickets: Info unavailable Not too long ago, native Mobilian Kate Kelly was a local singer-songwriter strumming songs on her acoustic. Eventually, she decided to expand her career options by relocating to Nashville. Home was never far away, however. Pulling inspiration from her time on the Gulf Coast, she began penning songs for what would become her first release, “New Heartbeat.” According to her website, Kelly hopes listeners will experience “a familiar yet unchartered journey” as she weaves her narrative through jazz, blues and Americana styles. The songs on “New Heartbeat” thrive from minimalist production and concentration on aural clarity, allowing listeners to discern layer upon layer of beautiful sound. Kelly’s vocal work is both dreamy and virtuosic throughout the album. No matter where the instrumental arrangements go, Kelly maintains her flawless vocal composure. While the album features a full band, her songs seem created to maintain their power even in a solo environment.
26 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
Each month, Poet Tree Entertainment collects some of the freshest lyricists on the Southeastern hip-hop scene for its Elements showcase. This installment will bring Rod McCoy as one of two hip-hop ambassadors from the ATL. McCoy’s verbal flow is a smooth, hypnotic delivery of eclectic rhythms switched with skillful spontaneity. J-Coop will also be representing Hotlanta. With his smooth Dungeon Family-esque grooves, he’s picking up where Atlanta hip-hop icons Outkast left off. For local artist Eterniti hip-hop is an art form. His well-thought-out lyrical arrangements create an intricate mix of rhythm and spoken word amplified by personal and social philosophies for the modern world. Unicorn Bounty Hunters will provide this lineup with a dose of homegrown indie hip-hop. This collective’s greatest aspect is the sonic personality of each member, especially on such memorable tracks as “Garden of Eden.” Photo/ Facebook | Kate Kelly
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 27
AREAMUSIC LISTINGS | June 29 - July 5
THUR. JUNE 29
Alchemy— WBA After Hours Networking, 5p Bluegill— Brandon White Blues Tavern— Doobious Callaghan’s— The Smart Brothers Cockeyed Charlie’s— JJ Dority’s Bar and Grill— John Martin Davis Felix’s— Jimmy Lumpkin Duo Flora Bama— Bruce Smelley, 2p// Al and Cathy, 5p/// 100 Dollar Car, 6p//// Mark Sherrill, James Daniel, Chris Newbury & Mel Knapp, 6p//// Brian Hill Duo, 10:15p//// Jared Ashley, 10:30p Hangout— Wavelength, 6p// Ryan Dyer, 10p Hard Rock (Center Bar) — Brandon Green, 8p IP Casino— Mojiles, 9p Listening Room— Wes Loper Lulu’s— Lefty Collins, 5p Manci’s— Ross Newell McSharry’s— Rock Bottom, 7:30p Old 27 Grill— Elise Taylor, 6:30p SanBar— Jim Andrews, 7p Tacky Jacks (Orange Beach) — Hippy Jim, 6p Wind Creek Casino— Lacee, 8p
FRI. JUNE 30
All Sports Bar & Billiards— DJ Markie Mark, 10p Beau Rivage— Lynyrd Skynyrd, 8p Bluegill— Shea White, 12p// Bust Duo, 6p Blues Tavern— Ric McNaughton Band Callaghan’s— Winston Ramble Cockeyed Charlie’s— 3HG, 10p Crooked Martini— Multi N Funk, 9p Dority’s Bar and Grill— Brandon Bailey Felix’s— Lefty Collins Flora Bama— Jay Hawkins Trio, 1p// LeaAnne Creswell Trio, 2p/// Dave Chastang, 4p//// Davis Nix & River Dan, 5p//// Jack Robertson Show, 5:30p//// Hung Jury, 6p//// Lucky Doggs, 6p//// Shawna P Duo, 9p//// Foxy Iguanas Trio, 10:15p//// Jared Ashley, 10:30p Hangout— Yeah Probabl, 6p// Ja’Rhythm, 10p Hard Rock (Center Bar) — Audio Time Machine, 9:30p IP Casino— Bush, 8p// Mojiles, 9p Listening Room— Grace Askew with the Unknown Rider Lulu’s— Cool Rayz, 5p Main Street Cigar Lounge— Twang Gang, 8p Manci’s— Hannah McFarland and McKenzie Knapps McSharry’s— DJ Chi, 10p The Merry Widow— June Elements Hip Hop Showcase, 9p
28 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
Moe’s BBQ (Daphne) — The Stereo Dogs, 8p Moe’s BBQ (Foley) — Alexander Wilkerson, 6p Moe’s BBQ (Mobile) — Chris Hergenroder, 6:30p Old 27 Grill— Retrobution w/ Kris Stoltz, 6:30p SanBar— Rex, 7p Soul Kitchen— The Molly Ringwalds, 10:30p Tacky Jacks (Gulf Shores)— Mason, 6p Tacky Jacks (Orange Beach) — Damien Lamb, 6p Wind Creek Casino— Lacee, 9p
SAT. JULY 1
Bluegill— Anna McElory, 12p// Fat Lincoln, 6p Blues Tavern— Soul River Levee Callaghan’s— Stolen Faces Dority’s Bar and Grill— The Woo Tones, 6p Felix’s— Blind Dog Mike Fin’s— Rambling Bob, 1p// Johnny Barbato and the Lucky Doggs, 8p Flora Bama— LeaAnne Creswell Trio, 11a// Jezebel’s Chill’n, 1p/// Logan Spicer Dup, 1p//// Big Muddy, 2p//// Jay Hawkins Trio, 2p//// Brittany Grimes, 4p//// Brandon White, 5p//// Jack Robertson Show, 5:30p//// Brian Hill Band, 6p//// Rob Aldridge Du, 6p//// Sam Glass Duo, 9p//// River Dan Band, 10p//// Wes Loper Duo, 10:15p//// Josh Buckley Band, 10:30p Hangout— Jason Abel Project, 7p// G-River, 11p Hard Rock (Center Bar) — Audio Time Machine, 9:30p Hard Rock (Live) — Randy Houser, 8p Listening Room— The Good Graces w/Wyatt Espalin Lulu’s— Lee Yankie, 5p Manci’s— Brittany Bell Moe’s BBQ (Mobile) — Quentin Berry, 6:30p Old 27 Grill— Lonesome Mel, 6:30p River Shack— Pearls of Trinity, 4p Pirates Cove— Big Muddy, 6p SanBar— David Jones, 7p Soul Kitchen— K Michelle, 9p Top of the Bay— LYNAM Wind Creek Casino— Lacee, 9p
SUN. JULY 2
Alchemy— Chief Slac Bluegill— Quintin Berry, 12p// Tip Tops, 6p Blues Tavern— John Hall Trio Callaghan’s— John Martin Davis Band Dority’s Bar and Grill— Ben Leninger and Friends, 6p Felix’s— Bobby Butchka Fin’s— Chris Hergenroder, 3p Flora Bama— Foxy Iguanas, 12p// Al & Cathy, 1p/// Jason Justice, 1:30p//// Adam Brown, 2p//// Jezebel’s Chill’n, 2p//// Rob
Aldridge Duo, 5p//// Lucky Dogs, 5:30p//// Lee Yankie and the Hellz Yeah, 6p//// Perdido Brothers, 6p//// Foxy Iguanas, 10p//// Brian Hill Trio, 10:15p//// Mario Mena, 10:30p Golden Nugget— Cowboy Mouth Hangout— Luke Langford & 311 South, 6p// Quintin Berry, 10p Hard Rock (Center Bar) — Chad Wesley Band, 8p Lulu’s— Greg Brown, 1p// Cadillac Attack, 5p McSharry’s— Trad. Irish Music, 6:30p O’Daly’s— Barry Gibson, 11:30a SanBar— Stephanie Premier Duo/Katrina Kolb, 6p
MON. JULY 3
Dority’s Bar and Grill— May Neese, 6p Felix’s— Chris Houchin Flora Bama— Rebecca Barry Trio, 12p// J. Hawkins Trio, 1p/// Founders and Friends, 2p//// Ja Rhythm, 2p//// Big Muddy, 5:30p//// Cathy Pace, 6p//// River Dan, 6p//// Mario Mena Band, 10p//// Petty and Pace, 10:15p//// Josh Newcom Band, 10:30p Hangout— Wavelength, 6p// Quintin Berry, 10p Listening Room— The Hill Country Hounds Lulu’s— Brent Burns, 5p Manci’s— Brandon White and Karl Langley
TUE. JULY 4
Bluegill— Natt Neese Dority’s Bar and Grill— Johnny and the Loveseats, 6p Felix’s— Rodger Fleshman Flora Bama— Wes Loper Duo, 1p// Oliver’s Twist, 2p/// T-Bone Montgomery, 2p//// Gary Story, 5p//// Logan Spicer & The Honky Tonk Machine, 5:30p//// Hung Jury, 6p//// Mose Wilson & The Delta Twang, 10p//// Alabama Lightning, 10:15p Hangout— Fortag, 6p// Shea White & Friend, 10p Lulu’s— Jimmy Lumpkin, 5p
WED. JULY 5
Bluegill— Ross Newell Callaghan’s— Phil and Foster Crooked Martini— Crooked Smiles, 8p Felix’s— Lee Yankie Flora Bama— Neil Dover, 2p// Kevin Swanson, 5p/// Logan Spicer, 5:30p//// Rhonda Hart & Jonathan Newton, 6p//// Jay Williams Band, 10p//// Wes Loper Duo, 10:15p Hangout— Yeah Probably, 6p// Justin Wall, 10p Live Bait— Alabama Avenue, 7p Lulu’s— The Groovinators, 5p Old 27 Grill— Youth Open Mic, 6:30p
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 29
Sam Elliott is ‘The Hero’
FILMTHE REEL WORLD
BY ASIA FREY/FILM CRITIC/AFREY@LAGNIAPPEMOBILE.COM
AREA THEATERS CARMIKE CINEMA’S Wynnsong 16 785 Schillinger Rd. S. (251) 639-7373 CRESCENT THEATER 208 Dauphin Street (251) 438-2005 HOLLYWOOD STADIUM 18 1250 Satchel Paige Dr. (251) 473-9655 RAVE MOTION PICTURE JUBILEE SQUARE 12 6898 U.S. 90 Daphne, (251) 626- 6266
repare to fall madly in love with Sam Elliott, star of the simple yet affecting film “The Hero.” Depending on your age, he might give you complex dad-love feelings, or more the straightforward “luv” kind, but he will gently but firmly break your heart in every scene. Celebrate the future of the Crescent Theater, which met its fundraising goal and is therefore remaining open in its current location, in the company of the actor with the greatest voice (and moustache) of all time. Director Brett Haley, after working with Elliott in his last film, “I’ll See You in My Dreams,” wrote “The Hero” as a vehicle exclusively for him. Apparently he just thought everyone should know what it’s like to hang out with Sam Elliott, and he wasn’t wrong. The only shortcoming is that he might have fleshed out the other characters more fully, but Elliott still carries the film well on his broad cowboy shoulders. Elliott plays Lee, a longtime Hollywood actor, famous for a film called “The Hero,” riding off into the sunset of his career doing commercial voiceovers for barbecue sauce and otherwise capitalizing on fame won long ago. He also has pancreatic cancer. It doesn’t take long to see that Lee has no one in his life with whom to share his bad news. He is estranged from his adult
daughter and divorced from her mother, and his best friend is his drug dealer, a former child actor he worked with in a TV series and a fellow marijuana and Buster Keaton enthusiast. Nick Offerman is great in this role, and the only character in the film that really matches Elliott’s level of existing as a fully realized person. They create a long history between them immediately. He gets to share time with Elliott in his best scene, in which they read together from a script for Lee’s upcoming audition. For a role as a cowboy hero in a science fiction film, the echoes in his real life overwhelm him, a nice conceit that works well. Lee doesn’t know his daughter (Kristin Ritter) very well, and neither do we. He asks her if she’s still working at a steak restaurant he liked, and she retorts that she now works at Google. This brief exchange speaks effectively to the depth of their divide. Lee is somewhat friendlier with his ex-wife, played by his real wife, Katharine Ross, but his loneliness is evident. Ritter’s is the most thinly written character in the film, and her impact exists primarily in how Elliott shows us Lee feels about her. Maybe her sketchy details are meant as an extension of Lee’s failure to connect with her, even when he claims he wants to. When Lee meets a wry younger
woman (Laura Prepon), he finally has someone to bring as a date to his Lifetime Achievement award ceremony, but he, more than her, is extremely dubious of their May-December connection. A moment of viral fame boosts Lee’s prospects in a rather predictable course of events, but this leads Lee to further examine his feelings and options for the future of his health and life. Slowly, he realizes that if he were to die, someone might actually take notice. “The Hero” is really a character study of a film, but what a great character. Elliott is often in a supporting role, always recognizable but almost a novelty act, but he shines in this upgrade to leading man. Lee seems like a character Jeff Bridges might play, and of course, Elliott is deeply associated with Bridges because of his cowboy role in “The Big Lebowski.” In this film, however, Sam Elliott’s character is front and center, and he actually has a name and an identity beyond “cowboy.” Of course, “The Hero” is really about that cowboy identity, and Elliott’s signature voice and famous moustache are practically their own characters. Like Elliott himself, Lee’s legacy is inextricably tied to these characteristics, and Lee looks into the abyss and ponders what it has meant, and will mean, to play himself. “The Hero” starts Friday, June 30, at the Crescent Theater.
CARMIKE CINEMAS 23151 Wharf Ln. Orange Beach (251) 981-4444 COBB THEATRES PINNACLE 14 3780 Gulf Shores Pkwy Gulf Shores (251) 968-7444 EASTERN SHORE PREMIERE CINEMA 14 30500 Alabama 181 #500 Spanish Fort, Al (251) 626-0352 Information accurate at press time; please call theaters for showtimes.
30 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
Photos | Beth Dubber / Warner Bros.
FROM LEFT: In “The Hero,” Sam Elliott is an ailing movie star who comes to terms with his past and mortality. Amy Poehler and Will Ferrell are parents who open an illegal casino to recoup their child’s college fund in “The House.” NEW IN THEATERS THE HOUSE
Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler star as parents who open a casino in their basement to replenish their daughter’s college fund. All listed multiplex theaters.
DESPICABLE ME 3
Gru (Steve Carell) and his wife Lucy (Kristen Wiig) must stop former
‘80s child star Balthazar Bratt (Trey Parker) from achieving world domination.
This entertaining family drama set in a small town in the hills of northern India tells the story of one man’s love for his family — and his unshakable belief in himself. AMC Mobile 16
TRANSFORMERS: THE LAST KNIGHT All listed multiplex theaters. BABY DRIVER All listed multiplex theaters. PARIS CAN WAIT AMC Classic Wharf DJ DUVVADA JAGANNADHAM Regal Mobile Stadium 18 47 METERS DOWN All listed multiplex theaters. ALL EYES ON ME All listed multiplex theaters. CARS 3 All listed multiplex theaters. ROUGH NIGHT
All listed multiplex theaters. THE MUMMY All listed multiplex theaters. MEGAN LEAVEY AMC Jubilee Square 12, AMC Classic Wharf 15 WONDER WOMAN All listed multiplex theaters. CAPTAIN UNDERPANTS: THE FIRST EPIC MOVIE All listed multiplex theaters. PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: DEAD MEN TELL NO TALES All listed multiplex theaters. BAYWATCH Regal Mobile Stadium 18 GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY, VOL. 2 Regal Mobile Stadium 18
‘Brilliant’ novel imagines Lincoln in limbo after death BY W. PERRY HALL/CONTRIBUTING WRITER
incoln in the Bardo: A Novel,” a brilliant literary achievement, is the ideal book for the Fourth of July as it profoundly reminding us of our union as citizens of the United States of America — this great nation created by our forefathers’ Declaration of Independence from the “absolute Despotism,” “long train of abuses and usurpations” and “invasions on the rights of the people” by the then “King of Great Britain,” our democracy founded upon principles of equality and each individual’s endowment “by [our] Creator with certain unalienable rights, [such as] Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” The novel provides just as important a remembrance of how our country was nearly crushed, but ultimately was forged, by the crucible of a civil war that cost the lives of more than 620,000 young men (in perspective, a number that today would be roughly 6.5 million). More significant than these, through a fictional rendering of President Abraham Lincoln’s loss of his 11-year-old son, Willie, the novel elegantly recalls our connectedness, despite our many differences, through our shared human experience of love, family and the anguishing grief each of us suffers in losing those we love. In February 1862, close to a year after Lincoln’s inauguration and 10 months after the start of the Civil War, he lost Willie to typhoid fever. Author George Saunders, primarily known for his satirical short stories, speculates that President Lincoln’s revival in the face of a human being’s greatest loss — of his child — prepared him especially to pull the nation through the jaws of darkness and the legion of losses suffered by families on both sides of the war. Saunders crafts three vibrant, compelling characters from differing backgrounds to drive the novel’s narrative in Georgetown’s Oak Hill cemetery, in the “bardo” (Tibetan for limbo between the world and the eternal afterlife). Hans Vollman is a charmingly gruff printer who carries about in a tumescent state (existing as he died, just prior to consummating his marriage to a wife 20 years his junior); Roger Bevins, an Orphean suicide with a bounty of extra eyes, hands, ears, noses that pop out when he becomes agitated or excited; and Reverend Everly Thomas, a sage man of the cloth whose mouth is cast permanently in an “O” of fright. This trio is joined by a host of other colorful characters as they chaperone young Willie, left behind in the bardo instead of ascending because he wanted to see his dad once more.
Saunders seamlessly intersperses the novel’s rich and intellectually stimulating dialogue with brief chapters containing excerpts from news accounts, memoirs, diaries and biographies of the time, which display the harsh tenor of the public outcry in the months after Lincoln assumed the presidency, when he had no clear plan for resolving the nascent war or the conflicts leading to the Southern states’ secessions, including: “The President is an idiot” — George B. McClellan; “Vain, weak, puerile, hypocritical ... By all odds, the weakest man who has ever been elected” — Sherrard Clemens; and “Will go down to posterity as the man who could not ... understand the circumstances and interests of his country ... who plunged his country into a great war without a plan; who failed without excuse, and fell without a friend” — London Morning Post. The novel largely enamors with its punchy tone, containing humor enough to prompt a few laughs loud enough to wake the family. The narrative tightens for a short stretch after departed slaves from outside the segregated cemetery travel to Oak Hill to see the president, only to be met by resistance from a violent, racist faction led by a bombastic Confederate officer. I cannot recall a novel so manifesting that which unites us as a country and as human beings: “At the core of each lay suffering; our eventual end, the many losses we must experience on the way to that end.” At the same time, the novel inspires in its portrayal of the human spirit’s resilience and perseverance. Abraham Lincoln, generally acknowledged as the country’s greatest president, who had been “broken, awed, humbled, diminished” by his son’s death and roundly ridiculed as “a person of very inferior cast of character, wholly unequal to the crisis,” rises from the ruins to remake himself and hold together a nation seemingly torn asunder. The bardo’s voices range widely from farmers and soldiers to priests and suicides, emblematic of the diversity of opinions and backgrounds of our country’s departed in 1861. Saunders writes each tone as valued and as if he is conducting a symphony, with the result being a sort of cosmic chorus in “cordial unison” under brocades of blue, twinkling white willows and a rain of red glare, celebrating the human spirit and similarities that can unite our nation. By novel’s end, Lincoln’s final goodbye to the body of his son can leave one undone; for others, the trio’s farewell aria might do just as well, by lacing the reader with the unalloyed beauty of simple things in life we take for granted as if our days here are limitless. Bevins, the
young, erudite poet, captures it best as he contemplates leaving the world behind: “... the things of the world were strong with me still … such as ... cold water from a tin jug; toweling off one’s clinging shirt post-June rain ... Pearls, rags, buttons ... The way a moistness in the eye will blur a field of stars ... writing one’s beloved’s name upon a frosted window with a gloved finger …” It is no stretch to predict time will bestow this novel with the status of a “modern classic,” one that is studied in literature classes when your children’s children attend grade school. “Lincoln in the Bardo” represents a memorial to those who have gone before us, a tribute to President Abraham Lincoln and a celebration of Americans’ spirit to rise from defeats and our resolve to endure and succeed.
“Lincoln in the Bardo: A Novel” By George Saunders Random House, 2017 Hardcover $28
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 31
CALENDAR OF EVENTS JUNE, 29, 2017 - JULY 5, 2017
FOURTH OF JULY CELEBRATIONS • BAY MINETTE: Bay Minette Rotary Club will host a fireworks display on Monday, July 3, at dusk behind Simmons Field, East 6th St.
a ceremony at the water tower at 11 a.m. The fireworks show will be on Dauphin Island Beach and begin at sunset Tuesday, July 4.
• SEMMES: Semmes Freedom Celebration is Monday, July 3 at MGM High School. The celebration begins at 4 p.m. with fireworks ending the day just before 9 p.m.
• POINT CLEAR: The Marriott Grand Hotel will host a fireworks show on Monday, July 3, at 9 p.m.
• THE WHARF: On Monday, July 3, 5-9 p.m., Main Street will be home to children’s activities and serve as the prime vantage spot to view the fireworks display at 8:45 p.m.
• DAUPHIN ISLAND: The Dauphin Island Veterans Association will host
• DAPHNE: Waterslides, inflatables, games and more on Tuesday, July 4. Fireworks at dusk. 5 p.m. at Al Trione Sports Complex. Call 251-621-3703. • GULF SHORES: The city of Gulf Shores will host a fireworks display beginning at 9 p.m. on Tuesday, July 4 at the Gulf State Park Fishing and Education Pier.
GENERAL INTEREST Kids’ Day in Bienville Every Thursday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in Bienville Square, there is a variety of activities, performances and displays for kids of all ages. Storytime begins each week at 11 a.m., 11:30 a.m., noon and 12:30 p.m. Fairhope farmer’s market The city of Fairhope hosts an outdoor farmer’s market Thursdays, 3-6 p.m., through Nov. 2, behind the Fairhope Public Library downtown on Bancroft Street. Call 251-929-1466. Free family movie night Join Dauphin Island on the West End Beach for a free movie at dusk on Thursday and Friday. “Jaws” will be shown both days this week. Mental Wellness Conference Starting at 9:30 a.m. on Thursday, June 29, there will be a discussion about crisis issues in mental health care services for families in South Alabama. Bryant Bank, 1801 U.S. 98 in Daphne. Call 251-404-3924. Free senior lunches The last Thursday of every month, End Time Harvest Ministry provides seniors with a free lunch at 1701 Donham Drive in Mobile. Call 251-604-2710. Red, White and Bulls Rodeo Two nights of live music and rodeo this weekend with gates opening at 5 p.m. Friday night, Johnny Hayes and the Loveseats will perform at 9 p.m. following the rodeo. Saturday night, fireworks will follow the rodeo. Visit thegroundsmobile.com. Smoke on the Coast Spanish Fort Town Center will host food trucks, live music, children’s activities and a fireworks display on Saturday, July 1, 6-9:30 p.m. Greyhound adoption Discover if adopting a retired racer is the
right choice for you and your family. $200 adoption fee includes immunizations, heartworm check, leash and collar. B&B Pet Stop. Saturday, July 1, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. 251-661-3474. Market in the Square Mobile’s downtown farmer’s market is now held in Cathedral Square on Saturdays, 7:30 a.m. until noon. Come enjoy music, food, beverages and more. West Mobile Farmer’s Market This farmer’s market, sponsored by Christ United Methodist Church, is held every Tuesday, 3-6 p.m., on the west side of church property, 6101 Grelot Road, Mobile. Call 251-342-0462. Help Me Grow Wednesdays Lifelines Counseling Services and the Help Me Grow staff provide free developmental screenings throughout June and July. Just visit us at The Shoppes at Bel Air every Wednesday between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. to speak with someone. Shining Star Youth Camp The Baldwin County Sheriff’s Office will host camps for ages 8-13 at Fairhope Intermediate School June 28-30, Rockwell Elementary School July 12-14, and Central Baldwin Middle School, Aug. 2-5. Call 251972-6890. TOPS Take Off Pounds Sensibly meets every Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. at Spanish Fort Presbyterian Church. For more information, call 251-625-6888. Providence Farmer’s Market Shop the farmer’s market every Wednesday through July 12, 2-5 p.m., in Lot F at Providence Hospital. Call 251-631-3501. Dauphin Island Boardwalk Talks Boardwalk Talks are held the first and third Wednesday of each month at 11:15 a.m. at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab, 101 Bienville Blvd. Call 251-861-2141.
32 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
Photo | Provided
• MOBILE: Music, picnicking and fireworks at Battleship Memorial Park. Park will be open for tours from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. Tuesday, July 4. The Mobile Pops concert will begin at 6 p.m. followed by the city of Mobile fireworks show at 9 p.m.
• FAIRHOPE: Concert and fireworks in Henry George Park and the Fairhope Municipal Pier on Tuesday, July 4. The Baldwin Pops Concert will begin at 7 p.m. The fireworks display will begin at approximately 9 p.m.
Midtown Optimist Club Join Midtown Optimist Club every Wednesday at noon for lunch at Azalea City Golf Course. Call 251-348-3542. Toastmasters Toastmasters International meets regularly at six locations in Mobile and Baldwin counties. Visit www.toastmasters.org for more information.
ARTS Art Education Sampler Thinking of signing up for an art class at Mobile Museum of Art? Come Thursday, June 29, at 6 p.m. for a sample of upcoming classes. Visit mobilemuseumofart.com. Art Talk: Richard McCabe On Thursday, July 29, at 6 p.m., Richard McCabe, curator of photography at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art in New Orleans, will give a complimentary talk at the Mobile Museum of Art. Visit mobilemuseumofart.com. Fun Friday This hour long make-and-take activity visits the “Faces of Africa” exhibit to learn about African masks. $5 per person. June 30, 10 a.m. and 11 a.m., History Museum of Mobile. Email theeckj@ historymuseumofmobile.com. Last Friday Art Night Last Friday Art Night features local art and history, food, beverages, music and socializing at Dauphin Island Art Gallery, 918 Bienville Blvd. For more information, call 251-861-3300. Sunset concert Dauphin Island West End Beach invites you for a Sunday concert at sunset featuring Jonesy Jones and The Crowned Jewels. Admission is $5 and goes toward preserving the Little Red School House.
MUSEUMS “Windows to the Sea” “Windows to the Sea” is a new permanent exhibit at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab Estuarium. Visit disl.org. “Shipwreck! Pirates and Treasure” A new, highly interactive exhibit at GulfQuest features more than 500 authentic artifacts recovered from deepocean shipwrecks. Visit www.gulfquest.org. “Christenberry: In Alabama” On the occasion of Alabama’s Bicentennial Celebration, this exhibit honors artist William Christenberry’s exploration of themes related to his native state. Mobile Museum of Art, 4850 Museum Drive. Through July 9. Call 251208-5200. “Faces of Africa” The History Museum of Mobile exhibit “Faces of Africa: A Mystical View of Tribal Heritage” runs through Monday, July 31. Call 251-208-7420. “Drugs: Costs and Consequences” The Gulf Coast Exploreum Science Center and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration team up to present a powerful interactive exhibit of the effects of drugs on individuals and society. Through August. Visit exploreum.com. Fairhope’s founding Learn more about the 1894 founding of Fairhope at the Fairhope Museum of History, 24 N. Section St. The museum is open daily (except Sunday and Monday) from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Call 251-929-1471. Little Discoveries “Outside the Box,” aimed at children age 6 and under, explores how innovation and creativity can lead to a world of possibilities, starting with a simple cardboard box. Wednesdays at 10 a.m. Call 251-208-6893 or email jholland@ exploreum.com.
Thursdays at MMoA Every Thursday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., the Mobile Museum of Art offers free admission to all visitors. No reservations are necessary. MMoA is at 4850 Museum Drive. Call 251-208-5200.
Palmer Pillans Middle School. Curvy yoga, Tone It Up ! (fusion workout), Zumba, basketball clinics (ages 8+) and sports conditioning (ages 8-17). To register or for more information, call 251-463-7980 or visit communityactivitiesprogram.com.
Dance and art classes Summer classes offered at Palmer Pillans Middle School include belly dance, ballroom dance, ballet and tumbling (ages 6-8), beginning piano (ages 8+), watercolor painting, zombies and superheroes art, and pet portraits art. Call 251-463-7980 or go to communityactivitiesprogram.com.
AFC Mobile AFC Mobile will take on Gaffa FC on Saturday, July 1, at 7 p.m. Archbishop Lipscomb Stadium, 3610 Michael Blvd. Go to www.afcmobile.net for more information. Mobile BayBears The Mobile BayBears are back in action at Mobile’s Hank Aaron Stadium. The team hosts Mississippi for a five-game home stand July 4-8. Call 251-479-BEAR. Group rides South Alabama and Mississippi Mountain Bike Association invites all levels of cyclists to join them every Tuesday and Thursday at 6 p.m. at USA Bike Trails and Sunday at 9 a.m. at Chickasabogue Park. Email carrie@ rideSAMBA.com. Weekly 1K/5K Every Thursday evening at 6 p.m., join Red Beard’s Outfitter and Cortlandt’s Pub in the Spring Hill Village Shopping Center for a 1K or 5K run and walk. No cost to participate. Bridge lessons The Mobile Bridge Center offers free bridge lessons each Tuesday at 6 p.m. at 1510 University Blvd. Arrive a few minutes early to register. Call the Bridge Center at 251-666-2147, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Fitness and athletics classes New fitness classes are in progress at
Pickleball for adults (indoors) Offered at Palmer Pillans Middle School, Saturday, 9 a.m. to noon. Great sport for all ages combines tennis, pingpong and badminton on a court one-fourth the size of a tennis court. Call 251-463-7980 or go to communityactivitiesprogram.com. Ballroom dance Azalea Ballroom Dance Club hosts dances the second and fourth Tuesday of every month, 7-9:30 p.m. at Via Health, Fitness & Enrichment Center, 1717 Dauphin St. Call 251-623-9183 or visit azaleaballroomdanceclub.com.
29, at 6 p.m. at the Fulton Road Baptist Church. The meeting will focus on current and upcoming projects in the district, blight, crime and public safety. Daphne Public Works meeting The City of Daphne Division of Public Works will hold a Public Involvement meeting on the proposed improvements to Corte and Austin roads. The public meeting is on Thursday, June 29, at 5:30 p.m. at 9949 Bellaton Ave., in Daphne. Baldwin County Commission: First and third Tuesday at 8:30 a.m., 322 Courthouse Square, Bay Minette. Work sessions are the second and fourth Tuesday at 8:30 a.m. rotating between Bay Minette, the Foley Satellite Courthouse, the Fairhope Satellite Courthouse and the Baldwin County Central Annex Building in Robertsdale. www. baldwincountyal.gov Baldwin County Planning Commission: First Thursday at 6 p.m., 22251 Palmer St., Robertsdale, www.baldwincountyal.gov. Bayou La Batre City Council: Second and fourth Thursday at 5:30 p.m., 13785 S. Wintzell Ave., www.cityofbayoulabatre.com.
month at 6:30 p.m., www.daphneal.com. Dauphin Island Town Council: First and third Tuesdays at 7 p.m., 1011 Bienville Blvd., www.townofdauphinisland.org. Elberta Town Council: Third Tuesday of each month at 6 p.m. in the town hall. Workshop meeting on the second Tuesday. townofelberta.com. Fairhope City Council: Second and fourth Monday at 6 p.m., 161 N. Section St. Work sessions are held before each council meeting at 4:30 p.m., www. cofairhope.com. Fairhope Planning Commission: First Monday at 5 p.m., 161 N. Section St. For more information visit www.cofairhope.com. Foley City Council: First and third Monday at 5:30 p.m., 407 E. Laurel Ave. Work sessions begin at 4 p.m., www.cityoffoley.org. Gulf Shores City Council: Second and fourth Mondays at 4 p.m., 1905 W. First St., www.gulfshoresal.gov.
Chickasaw City Council: Second and fourth Tuesday at 7 p.m., 224 N. Craft Highway, 251-452-6450.
Mobile City Council: Tuesdays at Government Plaza, 205 Government St. Pre-council meeting begins at 9 a.m.; council meeting begins at 10:30 a.m., www. cityofmobile.org.
Citronelle City Council: Second and fourth Thursday at 6:30 p.m., 19135 Main St., 251-866-7973.
Mobile Planning Commission: First and third Thursdays at 2 p.m., 205 Government St., www.urban.cityofmobile.org.
Creola City Council: Second and fourth Thursday at 6 p.m., 190 Dead Lake Road, #A, 251-675-8142.
Orange Beach City Council: First and third Tuesdays at 5 p.m., 4099 Orange Beach Blvd., www.cityoforangebeach.com.
Mobile District 3 Community Meeting Councilman C.J. Small will hold a District 3 Community Meeting on Thursday, June
Daphne City Council: First and third Monday at 6:30 p.m., 1705 Main St. Work sessions are the second Monday of each
Prichard City Council: Every Thursday at 5:30 p.m., 216 E. Prichard Ave., www. thecityofprichard.org.
Ballroom dance The Moonlight Chassé Ballroom Dance Society hosts dances the first and third Monday of every month, 7-9:30 p.m. at Hot Wheels Skating Rink in Daphne. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 33
MEDIA MEDIA FRENZY
FOX10 wins stand on open records
BY ROB HOLBERT/MANAGING EDITOR/RHOLBERT@LAGNIAPPEMOBILE.COM
t was a short-lived showdown when WALATV decided to sue the Mobile Police Department for refusing to release its policy on body camera usage by officers, but the station’s quick victory should serve as a good example for all local media outlets. WALA had sought to get a copy of MPD’s body camera usage policy since last September, with no results. Two weeks ago the station filed suit against MPD, resulting in the department doing a 180 five hours later and making the policy available to the public. The argument that a police department policy would not be a public record is something even a first semester law student could easily disprove. The whole issue ended up being a black eye for MPD that could easily have been avoided with a simple understanding of public records. Even in Alabama, which gives law enforcement tremendous latitude in shielding records from public scrutiny, one has to wonder why MPD leadership thought withholding its policy on body camera usage would hold up in court. Too often media outlets aren’t willing to “lawyer up” over improperly withheld records. Kudos to FOX10 for not letting it slide.
Grip wins “Louie”
FOX10 TV anchor Bob Grip recently received a prestigious award from the International Thomas Merton Society in recognition for his service with the Catholic group. Grip was given the “Louie” award by the ITMS at the group’s 15th general meeting at St. Bonaventure College in Olean, New York. The “Louie” is given biannually to an ITMS member whose distinguished service has contributed to
furthering the aims of the group. Grip served as the organization’s 12th president. As a “Louie” winner, Grip received a bronze bust of the late Thomas Merton, a monk who entered the Cistercian Abbey of Gethsemani in Kentucky in 1941. The award carries the name Merton took on for religious purposes — St. Louis de France. He authored dozens of books on Christian spirituality, including the classic “The Seven Storey Mountain,” an autobiography of his life up to becoming a monk. The ITMS promotes study and research on Merton, his life, writings and theology. In addition to serving as president, Grip is program chair for the 13th general meeting. He also does a major introduction to Merton at each general session meeting and currently serves as the group’s membership chair.
Golden Achievement for MCPSS
For the fourth year in a row, the public relations team at the Mobile County Public School System has come up big in winning the Golden Achievement Award from the National School Public Relations Association. MCPSS was recognized in particular for its one-day social media campaign conducted at the beginning of the 2016-17 school year. More than 300,000 parents, students, teachers and schools posted to social media using the hashtag #itstartstoday. The National School Public Relations Association recognizes exemplary work in all aspects of school public relations, communications, marketing and engagement. MCPSS was one of 70 districts in the United States recognized with this honor, and the only one in Alabama.
THE NEW YORK TIMES CROSSWORD PUZZLE SILENT TREATMENT BY SAM TRABUCCO / EDITED BY WILL SHORTZ ACROSS 1 Chimp relatives 7 Free spot, for short 10 Mouth pieces 14 Pac-12 team 18 Asian plumlike fruit 19 Rihanna’s 2016 ____ World Tour 21 Puma alternative 22 QB Tony 23 Reversals of reversals in sentences? 25 Ribald 26 Making the honor roll, e.g. 27 Org. involved in an annual open house 28 Directional suffix 29 Shell containers 31 Railroad name starting in 1832 32 Golf ball’s path 33 Result of waves hitting rocks 35 “Don’t worry about me!” 37 With 73-Across, a symbol of Massachusetts 38 Laundry unit 40 Small egg 41 Donates shelter to some beavers? 44 Bedding in a horse’s stall 46 Name that’s Hebrew for “my God” 47 Relative of “POW!” 48 Crop-damaging rodent49 “Don’t give up!” 51 New pony 53 One following the dotted lines? 57 Soup, black bread and, for the wealthy, meat? 62 Neutrogena dandruff shampoo 66 John or James 67 “What nerve!” 68 ____ Raton, Fla. 69 Gear for a hike 70 Part of E = mc2 73 See 37-Across 74 Not quite leaders of the pack 75 Social Security fig. 76 Based on theoretical deduction 78 Like concrete that’s shaped in advance 80 Road-sign silhouette 81 Kings and queens bringing their steeds to a halt? 84 Nelson who wrote “The Man With the Golden Arm” 86 James who wrote “A Death in the Family” 87 Freddy once hailed as “the next Pelé” 88 Husband to Emilia in “Othello” 90 Golfer Ernie92 Tiny bit 94 Popeye creator
E. C. ____ 98 “Excuse me, but my partner’s and my kids go first!” 102 “____, Escher, Bach” (Pulitzer-winning book) 104 Tackle-box item 105 When repeated, “All right, that’s enough!” 106 Up (for), paradoxically 107 Better than normal 110 Gchat notes, e.g. 111 Medical professional on TV 113 Part of a classic diner sign 115 “Listen up, Luis!” 116 WSJ competitor 117 Fantasy game role 118 Icelandic saga 119 Feast consisting entirely of Hawaiian foodstuffs? 122 Flight destination? 123 “Enough!” 124 Word with pink or cow 125 Illinois college town 126 James of R&B 127 Ring ____ 128 Sot’s woe 129 Like elves’ ears DOWN 1 Cronies 2 Plant disease whose two words differ by only one letter 3 Amphibious auto 4 Essence of an idea 5 Powerful winds 6 Lead-in to phonic 7 Greek god depicted on the
cover of “The Wind in the Willows” 8 Onetime rap moniker 9 Clothe 10 Tomb raider ____ Croft 11 “The Terrible” czar 12 When repeated, plea to a stage magician 13 Powers to decide 14 Goad 15 “Ugh, that hits close to home!” 16 “Shoot over your response” 17 Very serious 20 Part of las Filipinas 24 Scoundrel 30 Popular rapper with a feline-sounding name 34 Bacteria-battling drug 36 Intoxicating Polynesian drink 39 Cloud’s purpose 42 Hurt 43 No. 1 Presley hit 45 Court orders 47 “Ugh!” 50 Big fashion inits. 52 Follows, as advice 54 One might represent a representative 55 Sleazeball 56 ____ culpa 57 Frothing at the mouth 58 Lyric poem 59 Who has ever won a debate over the internet? 60 Start of the Marines’ motto
61 Honoring grandly 63 Did so-so at school 64 Digital currency 65 Hangs in there 71 Singer India.____ 72 One of 56 in 1776 74 Some Mardi Gras wear 76 S. Amer. land 77 Inlets 79 Genetic material 82 “Oh, boohoo!” 83 Gettysburg general 85 Head of an estate 88 “Hmm … it’s escaping me” 89 “If all else fails …” 91 Exam for future attys. 93 Warehouse 95 Native of Conakry 96 Little raider 97 Athlete’s time off 98 Single shot awarded for being fouled while scoring, in basketball lingo 99 Straight 100 Had because of 101 Start of a Spanish count 102 Clear one’s head? 103 Confines due to injury 108 Qualifying words 109 Facsimile, for short 112 It follows epsilon 114 Fuzzes 120 Photo ____ 121 Stat for Lou Gehrig or Manny Ramirez
ANSWERS ON PAGE 37
34 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 35
SPORTS UPON FURTHER REVIEW
Spicer brings national notice to Spring Hill’s rugby team BY J. MARK BRYANT/SPORTS WRITER/SPORTS@LAGNIAPPEMOBILE.COM/TWITTER @GOULAGUY
Photos | Spring Hill College
Six-foot-1-inch, 265-pound Mark Spicer Jr. recently auditioned for a berth on the Men’s Junior All-American rugby squad.
ollegiate rugby can trace its United States roots back athleticism’,” Goonan said of Spicer. “To be that size and to to the 1870s. Almost a century later, Spring Hill College play at that speed, what he does is unique and special.” fielded its first squad. Spicer was one of 40 players invited to the tryouts in Chula Only a club team for much of its time, the Badgers’ Vista, California. This included candidates from both NCAA athletic department now supports the crew. With the transition and NAIA colleges. He was among the last cuts before the final to NCAA Division II status nearly complete, the future is bright 26-man roster was announced. on The Hill. However, he was placed on the extended roster in case the Perhaps the best example of what potentially lies ahead for team needs a replacement. Until that time, he has returned to SHC can be seen in the recognition earned by Mark Spicer Jr. work with a club team in New Orleans before preparing for his Following a tremendous freshman camsophomore year in Mobile. paign, he was invited to audition for a berth “Mark is an exceptional young man on the Men’s Junior All-American squad on and off the pitch,” said J.D. Stephenthat was preparing for a berth in the Junior son, head coach of USA Rugby’s Junior World Rugby Trophy under-20 tournament. All-Americans. “His drive and dedication Spicer just missed making the final to rugby was evident in the way in which roster. His presence might have made the he performed through our identification THE 19-YEAR-OLD difference, as the USA team lost to Canada camps and into our wider training squad. SPICER WAS A STANDOUT Mark is in a great daily training environfor the chance to represent the North American region in Montevideo, Uruguay, ment with Coach Goonan and it’s been a IN BOTH FOOTBALL AND this September. pleasure to work with him and to see his “I knew he had the potential,” Justin progression throughout the year.” RUGBY AT ST. PAUL’S Goonan, who has coached the SHC men Spicer’s tryout has been the biggest and women’s rugby teams since 2014, said honor of any player since Goonan has been SCHOOL IN COVINGTON, of Spicer. “I expected him to make a signifiat Spring Hill. Before then, Sean Gannon cant impact. He is a very talented player.” had also gained some national notice. LOUISIANA. The 19-year-old Spicer was a standout in Spicer plays the “eight-man” position both football and rugby at St. Paul’s School in rugby, which is at the back of the scrum in Covington, Louisiana. He quickly made — the most familiar part of rugby, where an impact for the Badgers with his 6-foot-1, players interlock their arms and attempt 265-pound frame. to gain possession of the ball. “He is a strong ball carrier and a “He came in with good credentials,” said Goonan, who played strong defensive player,” Goonan said. rugby at Texas A&M. “I was confident that with coaching and For the national team, Spicer was at the “prop” position. training in college he could develop in our environment.” They are the anchors of the scrum on the front row. “They take Spicer was first noticed by USA Rugby scouts while playing the brute force of the hit,” Goonan said. “They do the driving in on the north shore of Lake Pontchartrain. The coaching staff for the scrum.” the Junior All-Americans kept tabs on him as the year progressed. The Spring Hill men will return for their 15-player season in “To quote one of the national team coaches, it is just his ‘raw late August. The season will run from early September through
36 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
November, then play again in January and February. Once March comes around, the Badgers switch to the seven-player format — which was used in the Rio Olympics — through April. “Outside of the physical aspects, what sets Mark apart is his energy and passion,” Goonan said. “He is a person who wears his heart on his sleeve. His energy is contagious, and it can intimidate the opposite side.”
• Dr. Thomas P. Rosandich, founding president of the U.S. Sports Academy in Daphne, has been named to the International Sports Hall of Fame. The ISHOF is a nonprofit foundation established by well-known fitness expert Dr. Robert M. Goldman “to honor the world’s greatest athlete legends in all sports.” Rosandich was inducted during the Arnold Schwarzenegger Sports Festival in Columbus, Ohio, the world’s largest annual multi-sports weekend festival, which hosts 175,000 attendees and more than 18,000 competing athletes. Joining him as part of the 2017 class were American actor and bodybuilder Lou Ferrigno, Heisman Trophy-winning running back Herschel Walker, American speed skating Olympic champion Apolo Ohno and American world champion powerlifter Bill Kazmaier. In announcing the award, the ISHOF stated that “Dr. Thomas P. Rosandich has had a long and storied career in the profession of sport dating to the early 1950s and served as founder and president of the U.S. Sports Academy for more than 43 years, developing the No. 1 sports academy in the world. A highly regarded track coach, his athletes included numerous Olympic and world record holders.” • The Reese’s Senior Bowl presented $14,000 to the Palmer Williams Group at the recent “Dinner with Emmitt Smith” fundraising event. PWG is a nonprofit organization focusing on developing disadvantaged youth through programs that offer physical fitness activities, nutritional counseling and life-skills development. “The Reese’s Senior Bowl is proud to support the Palmer Williams Group that (sic) does such a great job in providing opportunities for the youth in our area through their teams, camps and outreach programs,” bowl officials said. • Mobile’s Parks and Recreation Department received a donation valued at $15,000 from the Mobile Realtors Charitable Foundation. The gift includes video games, bumper tables, board games and other items. “Thousands of students participate in community activities provided by the Mobile Parks and Recreations Department each summer,” Katrina Frazier, community activities coordinator, said. “Many students in need will benefit from this donation.”
STYLE HOROSCOPES A LONG, STRANGE INDEPENDENCE DAY CANCER (6/22-7/22) — In Independence Day tradition, you’ll attempt to make ice cream from scratch. Afterward, you’ll inquire with Ben & Jerry’s about licensing your flavor inspired by “The Office” — “Don’t Harsh My (Marsh)Mellow.” Your lucky Fourth of July fireworks are Saturn missiles. LEO (7/23-8/23) — You’ll hyperventilate attempting to inflate a pool float. You’ll only regain your breath by singing along to Randy Travis’ “America Will Always Stand.” Your lucky Fourth of July fireworks are snakes. VIRGO (8/24-9/22) — Cheap tickets you found online for the hit play “Hamilton” actually only gain you entry into an off-Broadway performance of “Van Buren,” a solo performance by an alcoholic actor who portrays the eighth president’s handling of the Petticoat Affair in painstaking detail. Your lucky Fourth of July fireworks are parachutes. LIBRA (9/23-10/22) — You’ll lead a patriotic drum corps on a march through the streets. You’ll only stop after the chaotic rhythm manages to attract three-quarters of the Rainbow Family from the forest in the Pacific Northwest. Your lucky Fourth of July fireworks are M-80s. SCORPIO (10/23-11/21) — You’ll put out a cigarette in the parking lot of Awesome Mike’s Loud & Colorful Exploder Emporium. You’ll go in and drop more than $100 of your hard-earned cash, only to forget your free punk with every purchase. Your lucky Fourth of July fireworks are Snap Pops. SAGITTARIUS (11/22-12/22) — The neighborhood kids will light a string of Black Cats in your mailbox. In a retaliatory move, you’ll overreact by cutting the brake lines on their parent’s cars. Your lucky Fourth of July fireworks are Roman candles. CAPRICORN (12/23-1/19) — You’ll dust off the tongs and man the grill while rekindling your love for exotic meats. Unconventional as it may be, your ostrich burritos and barbecue rabbit will receive rave reviews from dinner guests. Your lucky Fourth of July fireworks are smoke bombs. AQUARIUS (1/20-2/18) — You’ll admit that Jeff Goldblum’s performance in “Independence Day” is your favorite performance in the history of film. You’ll also admit that you’ve had an unhealthy obsession with Goldblum ever since “Earth Girls are Easy.” Your lucky Fourth of July fireworks are fountains. PISCES (2/19-3/20) — You’ll engage in the world’s most consequential watermelon seed spitting contest. The winner gets $20. The loser has to move to Syria to join ISIS. Your lucky Fourth of July fireworks are bottle rockets. ARIES (3/21-4/19) — You’ll be the belle of the ball in your American flag bikini. Pair it with a 12-pack of Zima and trashy dancing for a day no one will soon forget. Your lucky Fourth of July fireworks are lady fingers. TAURUS (4/20-5/20) — You’ll unpack the family kazoos and join the Baldwin Pops Band’s Independence Day concert in Fairhope. Your skill will shine in a brief solo during the performance of “Proud to Be an American.” Your lucky Fourth of July fireworks are sparklers. GEMINI (5/21-6/21) — You’ll invite a dear friend to spend some time on the water during the holiday weekend, only to be met with the sarcastic reply, “A boat on the 4th of July? I don’t think I‘m that kind of white person.” Your lucky Fourth of July firework is a dud.
ANSWERS FROM PAGE 34
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 37
Causeway fun in the sunshine BY BOOZIE BEER NUES/SOCIAL BUTTERFLY
’all, is this real? There’s sunshine in our lives now! Who would have thought this day would finally come? All I can say is no one better complain about it being too hot or too bright outside. I’d rather the weather be sweltering and steamy than raining all day, every day. My backyard stayed so flooded that lily pads started to grow! I guess Tropical Storm Cindy decided two weeks of rain wasn’t enough so she would bring us some more. Luckily that girl has packed her bags and left town! Time to celebrate the sunshine — and America’s birthday! Cheers!
This past Saturday was for the boys … and, well, the girls too, because we can have fun on Saturday as well! Some of Boozie’s friends were in town for one of the 500 weddings that took place last weekend, so we decided to all meet beforehand at Nappie nominee for “Best Place to Take Out-of-Towners (Restaurant)” the Bluegill for lunch and drinks. With Saturday being a nice day, it was hard to beat flaming oysters, cold beer and live music out on the deck. That was an easy way for out-of-towners to think our city was cool! But I gotta say what made everyone’s lunch was Bruce Smelley and one little fan. Bruce was the Bluegill’s live entertainment, and while I don’t usually have the “ear” for music, this guy was good! He played some great country tunes and really caught the attention of one 2-year-old-ish boy. This little boy would just sit and stare at him while he sang, and even tried to talk to Bruce a few times while he was singing, as well as steal a quarter out of his tip jar. It was cute! As the day went on and more beers were consumed, someone requested “Dixieland Delight” and that got the crowd going. It seemed like the majority of the crowd
F U T U R E S H O C K 38 | L AG N I A P P E | J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7
was singing the fill-in parts, then it kinda slacked off so Bruce called everyone out. Then everyone was back to yelling the song! Roll Tide, y’all! The fun didn’t end there — next we headed to Traders. We had to give our guests the full experience of the causeway and you can’t do that without a Causeway Tea! One tea in, we convinced our friends they didn’t really need to go to the ceremony, it’s not like the bride would notice.
My DI spy didn’t have much to report after the weekend. Most were relaxing after worrying a little about Tropical Storm Cindy. But because of the storm Dauphin Island’s weekly summer concert that’s held on the West End was moved to the Dauphin Island Fishing Rodeo stage. Guests didn’t seem to mind and attendance was high. Two guests in particular really seemed to like the move. It seems the new location gave two older ladies (my spy said grannies but Boozie thinks their legs were too nice to be grannies) a raised surface to dance on. Apparently they danced the whole time! Good for them! We are never too old to boogie on down, or in their case, just boogie! Correction Last week Boozie got a little ahead of herself and was giving Bubba Thompson a little more credit than he earned. I said Bubba led the McGill-Toolen Jackets to a state title when he was quarterback, when in truth he led the Jackets to the final round of the playoffs. McGill lost to Hoover in the state championship game. But hey, Bubba is still a better athlete than all of us! Well, kids, that’s all I’ve got this week. Just remember, whether rain or shine, dramatic or scandalous or just some plain ol’ causeway lovin’, I will be there. Ciao!
LAGNIAPPE LEGALS | 251.450-4466 | email@example.com PUBLIC NOTICE STATE OF ALABAMA COUNTY OF MOBILE NOTICE OF COMPLETION In accordance with Chapter I, Title 39, Code of Alabama, 1975, NOTICE IS HEREBY given that J Hunt Enterprises, General Contractors, has completed the contract for Maitre Park Improvements-Combination Football and Soccer Field, 2401 Halls Mill Road, Mobile, Alabama 36606, PR239-16. All persons having any claim for labor, material or otherwise in connection with this project should immediately notify the Architectural Engineering Department, City of Mobile, P.O. Box 1827, Mobile, Alabama 36633-1827. Lagniappe HD June 22, 29, July 6, 13, 2017
STATE OF ALABAMA COUNTY OF MOBILE Notice is hereby given that a bill as described in the synopsis below will be introduced in any Special Session in 2017 and application for its passage and enactment will be made: A BILL TO BE ENTITLED AN ACT SYNOPSIS: Relating to Mobile County; to establish the regulatory authority for the Mobile County Health Department to regulate intermittent food service establishments that prepare food in association with a temporary exempt event that is a regional celebration, tradition, or cultural event designated as such by Mobile County, if the intermittent food service establishment does not prepare, sell, or distribute food on a regular basis in its regular line of business. June 15, 22, 29, July 6, 2017
FORECLOSURE NOTICE Default having been made by the herein referenced Grantees in the terms of that certain Vendor’s Lien Deed executed on July 31, 2013, by Curtis M. Ivey and Lorena D. Ivey, as Grantees to Profit Sharing Plan & Trust for MLB Realty Co. Inc., a Alabama corporation and Horace T. Jackson, as Grantors which said Vendor’s Lien Deed was recorded in the Office of the Judge of Probate, Mobile County, Alabama, in Real Property Book LR7059, Page 494, and default continuing under said Vendor’s Lien Deed, by virtue of and pursuant to the power of sale contained in said Vendor’s Lien, the following described real property will be sold at public outcry, for cash, to the highest bidder, in front of the North entrance of the Courthouse of said County, located at 205 Government Street, Mobile, Alabama 36644, during the legal hours of sale, on July 20, 2017. Lot 14, as per plat of MARCH ESTATES, Unit II as recorded in Map Book 63, Page 85, Probate Court of Mobile County, Alabama Said sale is made for the purpose of paying said Vendor’s Lien debt and costs of foreclosure. W. Austin Mulherin Holder of said Vendor’s Lien WILLIAM B. JACKSON, II STOKES & CLINTON, P.C. Attorneys for Lienholder Post Office Box 991801 Mobile, Alabama 36691 (251) 460-2400 Lagniappe HD June 15, 22, 29, 2017
FORECLOSURES FORECLOSURE NOTICE Default having been made in the payment of the indebtedness described in and secured by that certain Mortgage executed by Paul Bracy, Jr. to FJC Growth Capital Corporation, dated January 16, 2001 and recorded in Real Property Book 4994, Page 1379, and assigned to FCA Investments, LLC in Assignment of Mortgage dated October 8, 2007 and recorded in Real Property Book 6274, Page 1584 and further assigned to Dewey H. Brazelton in Assignment of Mortgages and Other Loan Documents dated February 19, 2008 and recorded in Real Property Book 6338, Page 668, of the records in the Office of the Judge of Probate of Mobile County, Alabama; and notice is hereby given that the undersigned, as holder of said Mortgage, will under and by virtue of the power of sale contained in said Mortgage, sell at public outcry for cash to the highest bidder during the legal hours of sale on Tuesday, August 8, 2017, at the Government Street entrance of Government Plaza located at 205 Government Street, Mobile, Alabama, the following described real property situated in the County of Mobile, State of Alabama, described in said Mortgage hereinabove referred to, viz: Tract I: The Southwest corner of State and Warren Streets, having a front of 56 feet on the South side of State Street and running Southwardly and parallel with Warren Street 108 feet and 2 inches more or less, for the depth of said lot, with equal width in rear as in front. Also lot of land commencing at a point on the South side of State Street 56 feet West of Warren Street, thence running Westwardly along the South side of State Street 42 feet for the front of said lot, and running Southwardly and parallel with Warren Street 108 feet for the depth of said lot, with equal width in rear as in front, being the same property conveyed to Lillie Van Luebbe by deed recorded in Deed Book 112, Pages 383-384 of the records in the Office of the Judge of Probate of Mobile County, Alabama. Tract II: Commencing at a point on the South side of State Street distant 52 feet and 9 inches East of the Southeast corner of Dearborn and State Streets, thence running along the South side of State Street in an Easterly direction 61 feet and 4 inches to a point; thence running in a Southerly direction and parallel with Dearborn Street 70 feet to a point; thence running in a Westerly direction and parallel with State Street 61 feet and 4 inches to a point; thence in
a Northerly direction and parallel with Dearborn Street 70 feet to the place of beginning. Tract III: Beginning at the Northwest corner of Warren and State Streets and running thence Northwardly along the West line of Warren Street 80 feet to a point; thence Westwardly and parallel with State Street 60 feet to a point; thence Southwardly and parallel with Warren Street 80 feet to a point on the North line of State Street; thence Eastwardly along the North line of State Street 60 feet to the place of beginning. All measurements being more or less. Said sale will be made for the purpose of paying said indebtedness and the expenses incident to this sale, including a reasonable attorney’s fee. Dewey H. Brazelton Holder of Said Mortgage ATTORNEYS FOR MORTGAGEE: Ferrell S. Anders, ANDERS, BOYETT & BRADY, P.C. One Maison, Suite 203 3800 Airport Boulevard Mobile, Alabama 36608 (251)344-0880 82206 Lagniappe HD June 29th, July 6th, and July 13th, 2017
FORECLOSURE NOTICE Default having been made in the payment of the indebtedness described in and secured by that certain Mortgage executed by William Anthony Frazier to Dewey H. Brazelton, dated February 28, 2008 and recorded in Real Property Book 6347, Page 690, of the records in the Office of the Judge of Probate of Mobile County, Alabama; and notice is hereby given that the undersigned, as holder of said Mortgage, will under and by virtue of the power of sale contained in said Mortgage, sell at public outcry for cash to the highest bidder during the legal hours of sale on Tuesday, August 8, 2017, at the Government Street entrance of Government Plaza located at 205 Government Street, Mobile, Alabama, the following described real property situated in the County of Mobile, State of Alabama, described in said Mortgage hereinabove referred to, viz: Beginning at the Northeast corner of Dearborn and State Streets; thence Eastwardly 72 feet; thence Northwardly 65.83 feet; thence Westwardly 72 feet; thence Southwardly 64 feet to the point of beginning. Said sale will be made for the purpose of paying said indebtedness and the expenses incident to this sale, including a reasonable attorney’s fee. Dewey H. Brazelton Holder of Said Mortgage ATTORNEYS FOR MORTGAGEE: Ferrell S. Anders, ANDERS, BOYETT & BRADY, P.C. One Maison, Suite 203 3800 Airport Boulevard Mobile, Alabama 36608 (251)344-0880 82207 Lagniappe HD June 29, July 6, 13, 2017
FORECLOSURE NOTICE Default having been made by the herein referenced Grantee in the terms of that certain Vendor’s Lien Deed executed on April 21, 2016, by Anthony E. Powell and Amanda N. Kelley, as Grantee to Anthony Ricchiuti, as Grantor which said Vendor’s Lien Deed was recorded in the Office of the Judge of Probate, Mobile County, Alabama, in Real Property Book LR7373, Page 771, and default continuing under said Vendor’s Lien Deed, by virtue of and pursuant to the power of sale contained in said Vendor’s Lien, the following described real property will be sold at public outcry, for cash, to the highest bidder, in front of the North entrance of the Courthouse of said County, located at 205 Government Street, Mobile, Alabama 36644, during the legal hours of sale, on July 20, 2017. Lot 20, as per plat of GLENWOOD FARMS, PHASE 3 as recorded in Map Book 74, Page 108, Probate Court of Mobile County, Alabama. Said sale is made for the purpose of paying said Vendor’s Lien debt and costs of foreclosure. Anthony Ricchiuti Holder of said Vendor’s Lien. WILLIAM B. JACKSON, II STOKES & CLINTON, P.C. Attorneys for Lienholder Post Office Box 991801 Mobile, Alabama 36691 (251) 460-2400
Lagniappe HD June 15, 22, 29, 2017
PROBATE NOTICE OF ESTATE ADMINISTRATION
PROBATE COURT OF MOBILE COUNTY, ALABAMA Estate of: CHARMAINE MARCIA BELL Case No. 2016-0070 Take notice that Letters of Administration have been granted to the below named party on the 20th day of June, 2017 by the Honorable Don Davis, Judge of Probate of Mobile County Probate Court, Alabama and that all parties having claims against said estate should file the same with the Probate Court of said county within the time allowed by law, or they will be barred. VONCILLE BELL PERKINS as Administratrix of the estate of CHARMAINE MARCIA BELL, deceased. Attorney of Record: SANDRA RANDER, Esq. Lagniappe HD June 29, July 6, 13, 2017
NOTICE OF ESTATE ADMINISTRATION PROBATE COURT OF MOBILE COUNTY, ALABAMA Estate of: LOIS S. HAKANSON, Deceased Case No. 2017-1176 Take notice that Letters Testamentary have been granted to the below named party on the 20th day of June, 2017 by the Honorable Don Davis, Judge of Probate of Mobile County Probate Court, Alabama and that all parties having claims against said estate should file the same with the Probate Court of said county within the time allowed by law, or they will be barred. JOHN E. HAKANSON as Executor under the last will and testament of LOIS S. HAKANSON,
Deceased. Attorney of Record: JOSEPH O. KULAKOWSKI Lagniappe HD June 29, July 6, 13, 2017
NOTICE OF COURT PROCEEDING June 16, 2017 Case No. 2015-0586-2 IN THE PROBATE COURT OF MOBILE COUNTY, ALABAMA Estate of WILLIAM J. WILLIAMSON, Deceased On to-wit the 31st day of July, 2017 at 2:00 PM in COURTROOM 1, THIRD FLOOR, Mobile County Government Center Annex, 151 Government Street the court will proceed to consider the PETITION FOR FINAL SETTLEMENT BY FORMER ADMINISTRATOR as filed by TYDUS WILLIAMSON. NOTICE is hereby given to all parties in interest who may appear and contest same or file a proper responsive pleading thereto if they then think proper. DON DAVIS, Judge of Probate. Attorney Name and Address: VANESSA ARNOLD SHOOTS, 56 ST. JOSEPH STREET, STE 1311, Mobile, AL 36602. Lagniappe HD June 29, July 6, 13, 20, 2017
NOTICE OF ESTATE ADMINISTRATION PROBATE COURT OF MOBILE COUNTY, ALABAMA Estate of: RITA RICHARDSON, Deceased Case No. 2016-2445 Take notice that Letters Testamentary have been granted to the below named party on the 15h day of June, 2017 by the Honorable Don Davis, Judge of Probate of Mobile County Probate Court, Alabama and that all parties having claims against said estate should file the same with the Probate Court of said county within the time allowed by law, or they will be barred. KENNETH ROYAL as Executor under the last will and testament of RITA RICHARDSON, Deceased. Attorney of Record: JEROME C. CARTER Lagniappe HD June 22, 29, July 6, 2017.
NOTICE OF ESTATE ADMINISTRATION PROBATE COURT OF MOBILE COUNTY, ALABAMA Estate of: FRANK HERMAN SPECHALSKE, Deceased Case No. 2017-1049 Take notice that Letters Testamentary have been granted to the below named party on the 6th day of June, 2017 by the Honorable Don Davis, Judge of Probate of Mobile County Probate Court, Alabama and that all parties having claims against said estate should file the same with the Probate Court of said county within the time allowed by law, or they will be barred. RICHARD ALAN SPECHALSKE as Executor under the last will and testament of HERMAN SPECHALSKE, Deceased. Attorney of Record: JON M. SPECHALSKE Lagniappe HD June 15, 22, 29, 2017
NOTICE OF COURT PROCEEDING April 26, 2017 Case No. 2014-0494-3 IN THE PROBATE COURT OF MOBILE COUNTY, ALABAMA Estate of ISAAC B. FRANKLIN Jr., Deceased On to-wit the 24th day of July, 2017 at 2:00 PM in COURTROOM 1, THIRD FLOOR, Mobile County Government Center Annex, 151 Government Street the court will proceed to consider the FINAL SETTLEMENT as filed by JANICE B. FRANKLIN. NOTICE is hereby given to all parties in interest who may appear and contest same or file a proper responsive pleading thereto if they then think proper. DON DAVIS, Judge of Probate. Attorney: VANESSA ARNOLD SHOOTS, 56 ST. JOSEPH STREET, STE. 1311. MOBILE, ALABAMA 36602. Lagniappe HD June 15, 22, 29, July 6, 2017.
NOTICE OF ESTATE ADMINISTRATION PROBATE COURT OF MOBILE COUNTY, ALABAMA Estate of: MARIAN A. POIRIER, Deceased Case No. 2017-1046 Take notice that Letters Testamentary have been granted to the below named party on the 6th day of June, 2017 by the Honorable Don Davis, Judge of Probate of Mobile County Probate Court, Alabama and that all parties having claims against said estate should file the same with the Probate Court of said county within the time allowed by law, or they will be barred. WILFRED POIRIER III as Executor under the last will and testament of MARIAN A. POIRIER, Deceased. Attorney of Record: KENNETH P. MURRAY Lagniappe HD June 15, 22, 29, 2017
NOTICE OF SALE The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on July 28, 2017- Time - 12pm, if not claimed - at 4763 Lott Rd., Eight Mile, AL 36613. 2007 Saturn Aura 1G8ZS57N17F145629 1999 Toyota Corolla 2T1BR12E0XC163843 2012 Chrysler 300 2C3CCAAG1CH118004 2011 Ford Fusion 3FADP0L38BR123735 Lagniappe HD June 22, 29, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on July
28, 2017- Time - 12pm, if not claimed - at 802 Celeste Rd., Saraland, AL 36571. 1998 Chevrolet C1500 1GCEC14W7WZ132405 Lagniappe HD June 22, 29, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on July 28, 2017- Time - 12pm, if not claimed - at 7960 Two Mile Rd., Irvington, AL 36544. 1996 Honda Accord 1HGCD563XTA168017 Lagniappe HD June 22, 29, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on July 28, 2017- Time - 12pm, if not claimed - at 928 Hannon Rd., Mobile, AL 36605. 2007 Chrysler 300 2C3KA53G57H715491 Lagniappe HD June 22, 29, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on July 28, 2017- Time - 12pm, if not claimed - at 1015 N Craft Hwy., Prichard, AL 36610. 2007 Cadillac CTS 1G6DM57T970123134 1999 Mazda 626 1YVGF22C2X5835525 Lagniappe HD June 22, 29, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on July 28, 2017- Time - 12pm, if not claimed - at 2507 Hand Ave., Bay Minette, AL 36507. 1999 Acura 3.0CL 19UYA2250XL011255 Lagniappe HD June 22, 29, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on July 28, 2017- Time - 12pm, if not claimed - at 2024 Halls Mill Rd., Mobile, AL 36606. 2002 Cadillac Deville 1G6KF57972U138058 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt 1G1AK55F567703224 Lagniappe HD June 22, 29, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on July 28, 2017- Time - 12pm, if not claimed - at 2951 South St., Theodore, AL 36582. 2010 Kawasaki EX250-J JKAEXMJ19ADA60544 Lagniappe HD June 22, 29, 2017
These abandoned vehicles will be sold on 07/27/2017 at 5781 Three Notch Rd Mobile Al. 36619 at 9 am. GMC 2CTA1MEC1B6405420 NISS 1N4AL3AP0EC286646 PLA L9NTELKE7E1265557 FORD 1FMZU63K14UC40552 Lagniappe HD June 22, 29, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on August 04, 2017 - Time -12pm, if not claimed - at 7960 Two Mile Rd., Irvington, AL 36544. 2012 Nissan Altima 1N4AL2AP8CN566634 2007 Chevrolet Silverado 2GCEK13M271675755 1998 Honda Accord 1HGCG5655WA195073
Lagniappe HD June 29, July 6, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on August 04, 2017 - Time -12pm, if not claimed - at 3151 Moffett Rd., Mobile, AL 36607. 2010 Hyundai Santa Fe 5NMSH4AG0AH336768
Lagniappe HD June 29, July 6, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on August 04, 2017 - Time -12pm, if not claimed - at 6275 Carol Plantation Rd. Lot 56, Theodore, AL 36582. 2006 Kia Optima KNAGD126465459650 Lagniappe HD June 29, July 6, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on August 04, 2017 - Time - 12pm, if not claimed - at 5681 Hwy. 90, Theodore, AL 36582. 2011 Mercedes E350 WDDKK5GF6BF052541 Lagniappe HD June 29, July 6, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on August 04, 2017 - Time -12pm, if not claimed - at 5388 Hwy. 90 West, Mobile, AL 36619. 2008 Suzuki Forenza KL5JD56Z08K00390 Lagniappe HD June 29, July 6, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on August 04, 2017 - Time -12pm, if not claimed - at 4505 Wilmer Dr., Mobile, AL 36619. 2001 Pontiac Firebird 2G2FS22KX12103106 Lagniappe HD June 29, July 6, 2017
Deadline for legal advertising in Lagniappe HD is every Monday at 3 p.m. LagniappeHD is distributed each Thursday. Lagniappe HD offices are located at 1100B Dauphin St. Mobile, AL 36604. For more information or to place your ad call Jackie at 251-450-4466. Or email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Lagniappe HD June 29, July 6, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on August 04, 2017 - Time -12pm, if not claimed - at 18330 Hwy. 45, Citronelle, AL 36522. 2011 Nissan Maxima 1N4AA5AP0BC834349 Lagniappe HD June 29, July 6, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on August 04, 2017 - Time -12pm, if not claimed - at 6821 Thorman Dr., Mobile, AL 36618. 1984 GMC C1500 1GTCC14H2EF701041 Lagniappe HD June 29, July 6, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on August 04, 2017 - Time -12pm, if not claimed - at 7110 14th St., Mobile, AL 36608. 2009 Nissan Altima 1N4AL21E99C144598 Lagniappe HD June 29, July 6, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on August 04, 2017 - Time -12pm, if not claimed - at 705 Stanton Rd., Mobile, AL 36617. 1998 Ford LGT Convt 1FTZX0764WKB98687 Lagniappe HD June 29, July 6, 2017
The following unclaimed vehicle(s) will be sold on August 04, 2017 - Time -12pm, if not claimed - at 802 Celeste Rd., Saraland, AL 36571. 2002 Chevrolet Impala 2G1WH55K829206503
J u n e 2 9 , 2 0 1 7 - J u l y 5 , 2 0 1 7 | L AG N I A P P E | 39