Lake Norman Currents Magazine

Page 1



A Huntersville home

Link & Pin

from the 1800s




and COVID-19

7292 Three Sisters Lane | Concord, North Carolina |

For your inspiring mornings Your home is more than a building or an address. It’s where you experience life, connection, and growth. The real estate company you choose to represent your property should be as exceptional as you are, and as your next chapter is going to be. In North Carolina, only Premier Sotheby’s International Realty offers unrivaled service and limitless opportunities. Call us today for a private consultation at 877.539.9865.

Asheville | Banner Elk | Blowing Rock | Charlotte | Lake Norman | Linville Ridge Sotheby’s International Realty® and the Sotheby’s International Realty logo are registered service marks used with permission. Each office is independently owned and operated. Equal Housing Opportunity. Property information herein is derived from various sources including, but not limited to, county records and multiple listing services, and may include approximations. All information is deemed accurate.

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CURRENTS | JANUARY 2021 L a 2k e LAKE N NORMAN ormaN’s TrusT ed ChoiCe For oraL surgery siN Ce 1985

Lake Norman’s

Leading Broker of Estate Homes UNDER CONTRACT

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WATERFRONT | CORNELIUS 16700 Tinker Place | MLS 3670664 Tracy Davis 704-779-9750 Pending Representing Seller



YACHT COVE | MOORESVILLE 153 Yacht Cove Lane | MLS 3634023 Lori Ivester Jackson 704-996-5686 Closed Representing Seller

$1.495 M

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8495 Norman Estates Drive | MLS 3388984 Tracy Davis 704-779-9750 Closed Representing Buyer

$2.49 M


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WILDLIFE BAY | TROUTMAN 180 Eagle Chase Lane | MLS 3647233 Mike Feehley 704-799-5233 Lori Ivester Jackson 704-996-5686


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MEADOWBROOK FARMS HUNTERSVILLE 15025 Ramah Church Road | MLS 3623826 Lori Ivester Jackson 704-996-5686


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POINTE REGATTA | CORNELIUS 20211 Sloop Court | MLS 3676060 Liz Miller 704-962-0018 Pending Representing Seller

WATERFRONT | MOORESVILLE 389 Stumpy Creek Road | MLS 3662838 Tracy Davis 704-779-9750 Payton Conner 704-877-8809




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CO R N E L I U S | M O O R E SV I L L E | C H A R LOT T E | AS H E V I L L E









The magazine by and for the people who call Lake Norman home


A History of Homes In my lifetime, I’ve owned three homes with my husband. They have all been uniquely different, and they all represent important touchstones in the history of our marriage. We purchased our first home in the spring following the year we got married. At the encouragement of some friends of ours, we checked out an older, more established neighborhood in High Point, N.C. At the time I was working in Winston-Salem and Daniel was working in Greensboro, so High Point seemed like a natural place to set up a home in between. The neighborhood had craftsman and Tudor-style homes built in the 1950s and perfectly manicured lawns. Being newly married and working our first professional jobs, we settled on what we could afford; the smallest house on the block—but it had an all-brick exterior and was built really well, plus it had detached garage that contained an extra room for storage or entertaining. The house was only about 1,700 square feet, but it was plenty of room for two people. Looking back on it, the experts at HGTV would have had a field day with that house, ripping up the carpet and refinishing the hardwood floors underneath, taking out the wooden cabinets in the kitchen and replacing them with shaker cabinets, updating light fixtures and painting everything appropriate shades of neutral. We had neither the time nor money to do all that—we slapped coats of different primary colors on the walls, painted the kitchen cabinets white, ripped up the carpet in our bathroom (there was gorgeous mosaic tile on the floors underneath) and replaced some light fixtures and added a bathroom vanity. Even without spending a ton of money on upgrades, it was a solid investment that turned us a profit when we moved to the Lake Norman area a few years later.

MacAdam Smith

Advertising Director Sharon Simpson

Advertising Sales Executives

Carole Lambert

Beth Packard

Trisha Robinson

Event Coordinator Alison Smith

Our second home we purchased in Huntersville had been built in the late 1990s, so we were thrilled with all the space and modern conveniences, plus the huge backyard for our kids and dog to play in. Coming from that 1,700-square-foot house, it took us a few years before we were able to fill up many of the rooms with furniture. We painted it several times over the years, added French doors to close off an office area where I could work in the formal living room, and upgraded the kitchen countertops, flooring and light fixtures in the bathrooms. A few years ago, we moved to Davidson to be closer to our kids’ school, and this home has a lot of natural light, even more modern conveniences, and a master suite on a separate floor from the kids, which I like now that they are teenagers and stay up later than I do! I also love having access to a greenway just a half a block down the street from the house.

Contributing Writers

I’ve learned that our needs and wants of a home grow and change with us over time, but I’m happy for the memories we’ve created in all three of ours, from bringing our first child home to the red brick home in High Point, to now being able to cook meals in a kitchen that has space for everyone to be in it at the same time. I’m grateful for all the memories of the past and the ones we have yet to make.

Contributing Photographers


Social Media Specialist Lauren Platts

Design & Production idesign2, inc Trevor Burton Sara Coleman Jill Dahan Vanessa Infanzon Grace Kennedy Karel Bond Lucander Martin Rose Mike Savicki Lara Tumer

Jon Beyerle Jamie Cowles Lisa Crates Gayle Shomer 8


Since 1930. Trusted for Generations. | JANUARY 2021



About the Cover: Your home should be a reflection of you.




Movers, shakers and more at the lake



Tiffany Ringwald forges path as an architectural photographer

Eating, drinking, cooking and fun

18 For the Long Run

FEATURES In Every Issue

30 Thoughts from the Man Cave

The Checkered Flag Foundation Celebrates Ten Years

52 Navigators

The Lake Norman Chapter of the National Charity League

57 Game On

Operating rec for youth changes with COVID-19

Lake Norman Home Builders Association


Sara Coleman pens children’s book based on popular video game


Home Trends-Classic design never goes out of style


62 Nibbles + Bites

IN THIS ISSUE 28 Young Leaders


We’re Just Crazy About The artwork of Tina Segal


Bet You Didn’t Know One of Mecklenburg County’s oldest surviving homes

Lake Norman Teen Council

Homebuilder and Design Profiles


Link & Pin NorthCross

64 Wine Time

Fish and Chips at Jeffrey’s

66 In The Kitchen

Butternut Squash and Spinach Lasagna

68 On Tap

BrickTree Brewing Co. in Lincolnton

A look at the talented experts in the Lake Norman area

71 A Pet for You

Furry friends looking for their forever homes.

72 Renee Wants to Know

How can I diversify our family library?

33 Lake Norman CURRENTS is a monthly publication available through direct-mail home delivery to the most affluent Lake Norman residents. It also is available at area Harris Teeter supermarkets, as well as various Chambers of Commerce, real estate offices and specialty businesses.

10225 Hickorywood Hill Ave, Unit A Huntersville, NC 28078 484.769.7445 | 10

The entire contents of this publication are protected under copyright. Unauthorized use of any editorial or advertising content in any form is strictly prohibited. Lake Norman CURRENTS magazine is wholly owned by Oasis Magazines, Inc.


Mission Statement: Lake Norman CURRENTS magazine will embody the character, the voice and the spirit of its readers, its leaders and its advertisers. It will connect the people of Lake Norman through inspiring, entertaining and informative content, photography and design; all of which capture the elements of a well-lived life on and around the community known as Lake Norman.

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Helping you on your road to good health.

North Carolina Neurology & Sleep is a comprehensive sleep and neurology clinic established in 2010 and located in Huntersville. Led by Peterson Giallanza, MD and Alexandria Sobin, NP, the practice offers sleep studies and neurological diagnostic tests. Two certified therapy dogs, Pepper, an Italian Greyhound and Lucy, an Australian Labradoodle, joined the practice in 2019.

conditions and sleep consultations; in lab and home sleep testing; electroencephalograms (EEGs ); nerve conduction testing and electromyograms (EMGs); minor ambulatory procedures.

The team takes an evidence-based approach to medicine. Using the latest technologies available, the clinic helps patients and their families understand the condition impacting their sleep or neurological well-being to determine the best possible treatment plan. The providers are highly trained in care of neurologic

We are offering Telemedicine appointments. To learn more about the services, visit our website: or call the clinic to book a consultation today. (704.464.1509). Office hours: Monday-Thursday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. We are currently closed on Fridays.



The North Carolina Neurology & Sleep team takes care to treat every patient with the utmost respect.







Please visit us online at




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Channel Markers Movers, Shakers, Style, Shopping, Trends, Happenings and More at Lake Norman

Documenting the Art of a Home Tiffany Ringwald

forges her path as an architectural photographer by Lara Tumer photography by Carrie Allen

It’s rare to know exactly what you want to do with your life from the age of seven; however, that’s the reality for Tiffany Ringwald, an architectural photographer based in Mooresville. She recalls the moment her mind was made up. She was looking through a book of photographs her mother had taken on her travels through Europe with her first SLR film camera, consuming the spectacular architecture in each city, the tulip fields in Holland—each page a new discovery more beautiful than the last. She became immersed, wanting to take the same trip as her mother and photograph all of the things her mother had. Ringwald grew her talents from the start, making sure to get experience wherever she could—from the school newspaper to any extracurricular where she could use her camera (at this point it was the same SLR her mother had used). There was no question that this is what she wanted to do, and she never veered off course. A moment of determination came to Ringwald after an unfavorable grade on a school writing assignment where she was to write about her career goals. After turning in what she considered a well thought-out paper on her aspirations to become an architectural photographer, her teacher returned the paper with a fat red “C” at the top a note that read “this is a hobby, not a career.”

She became more resolute than ever to make it just that. Ringwald began with an education in branding and website design, eventually launching her own photography business when the time was right in 2013. Her next move was to real estate photography, seeking out the agents who would permit the extra time and attention to detail, allowing her to shoot homes in the way she wanted to. Ringwald finds gratification in the dynamic and collaborative aspect of her business, working with designers and architects for the perfect end result. Her branding background certainly aids in her success. Everything she does is with the brand in mind, making sure to execute with overarching consistency. Out of all the types of photography Ringwald has dabbled in, architectural photography is perhaps the most difficult, but the most rewarding. When asked about her favorite shoots she recounts two separate projects—one light, airy, and breezy, and the other moody, dark and textured—further proof that she really can do it all. Finding the right light and right angles is not formulaic. The approach has to change with every shoot. There is never a dull moment and she wouldn’t have it any other way. | JANUARY 2021


CHANNEL MARKERS - for the long run

Beth White, executive officer for LNHBA.

Lake Norman Home Builders Association Advocating for the building industry and affordable housing by Karel Bond Lucander | photography by Jamie Cowles

The Lake Norman Home Builders Association is here to enhance your education of construction and design, provide networking opportunities and help you grow your business. Founded in 1990, LNHBA is a not-for-profit association that works to build a strong business environment for those in the home building industry and advocates to protect affordable housing. “Whether you’re a builder or an individual who is running a business that relies on the building industry, advocacy keeps our businesses working to protect the American dream of housing. And I think that’s important: To keep people working and keep homes affordable. If the builders don’t build, you have a lack of inventory and prices go up,” says Alma Jacobs, LNHBA membership committee chair. Jacobs stresses that this organization is not only for builders but also for architects, attorneys, bankers, electricians, engineers, interior designers and realtors—anyone involved with the industry. When members join the local Lake Norman chapter, they are automatically enrolled in the state and national associations— reaping the benefits of three organizations. In addition to providing networking opportunities, members can take seminars and courses (including virtual) to receive accreditations and certifications. Continuing education is now required for builders’ licensing, and LNHBA helps them “sharpen all their tools.” “For example, there’s an accreditation course called Certified Aging in Place or CAP,” says Jacobs. “It teaches builders and 18


subcontractors how to offer products that allow people to stay in their homes longer. It addresses things like roll-in showers, entryways and shelving. People aging up or those with disabilities are looking for builders with CAP certification.” Other certifications include energy efficient building, marketing and specialized trade courses, and the association helps members stay ahead of trends like “passive housing” or ultra-low energy buildings. Discounts and rebates on building materials and office supplies also come with membership. When prices rise, LNHBA can help members locate affordable materials. “One big issue this year was lumber prices,” adds Jacobs. “The price of lumber for a 2,500-square-foot house went up almost $18,000.” LNHBA donates a portion of all fundraising proceeds to its charity partner, Home-Hope of Mooresville, and has also donated to The ROC of Charlotte. LNHBA hosts many functions, and members can join committees or become a sponsor to receive special recognition. “We have quarterly membership meetings and socials, fall and spring golf tournaments, casino night, educational opportunities and the Best of the Lake Awards Gala,” says White. This annual design competition and awards gala showcases the exceptional craftsmanship of area professionals and is the association’s largest fundraiser. Unfortunately, it was cancelled in 2020 due to the pandemic. “We hope to plan one for 2021,” she says. For information, contact Beth White at or 704-664-5622. Or join online at

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Starting a Sara Coleman pens children’s book inspired by popular video game

Story Compiled from staff reports photography by Jacoby Rose Photography

Ulysses Press will publish the book in March of this year.

Many people dream of one day sitting down to write their book. But for Sara Coleman of Huntersville, also a regular contributor for CURRENTS, the opportunity to publish one came sooner than she ever expected. Coleman’s background is hardly the typical path of published authors. Although she majored in journalism in college, she chose a different path outside of the media industry. She spent her adult life working for large corporations in a sales capacity, which is what brought her to the Lake Norman area. After years of working with clients, attending meetings, and conference calls, Coleman began longing for a creative endeavor. She found an outlet in writing blogs and magazine articles, and soon began getting paid for her writing. What began as a hobby quickly grew into a passion that she could put her energy into. In January 2020, through corporate re-structuring, Coleman found herself with an opportunity to pursue writing full-time. Going full-time meant looking for writing opportunities in the most unlikely of places. In March of 2020, the independent publishing house Ulysses Press put out a call for writers looking for someone to author a children’s book. They also needed someone with knowledge of one of the world’s most popular video games, Roblox. She was immediately interested after seeing her own kids play it at home. After “auditioning” for the role of author, which included a review of her portfolio and providing sample book chapters and prompts, Ulysses Press selected Coleman to write the manuscript. The book is a set of 101 story prompts for elementary-aged kids, all centered around Roblox. The goal is to get kids interested in writing and spur their imagination by giving them story starters. One of the most exciting aspects for Coleman has been learning the publishing process and business. “Before this opportunity came along, I had no idea what it took to bring a book to market.” Launching in March 2021, the official title of Coleman’s book is 101 Unofficial Roblox Story Starters and is available through pre-order on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. But for Coleman, this is the beginning of many new adventures in her writing career. 20



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Classic design elements never go out of style by Renee Roberson

When considering design “trends,” focus on the fact that your home should be designed with comfort in mind, especially during a pandemic.

Talking about trends in home design and décor can be a tricky business, as most of us don’t want to be tied to or boxed into a look or overall scheme that won’t allow for some flexibility. People welcome the opportunity to change things up in their homes, whether with paint colors, accent pieces or even function of the various rooms.

Multipurpose spaces: We had to quickly find a way to bring functional workstations and desks into our homes in places they may not normally go, and 2021 will include ingenuity and creativity as people continue on the quest to make those spaces more comfortable and streamlined.

The real estate and home design industries have seen an uptick in business since this past spring, when COVID-19 saw more and more people working and schooling from home. As a result, people realized they either wanted or needed to adapt their living spaces accordingly, and these are some of the most common elements more and more homes are incorporating:

And what about the Pantone Color(s) of the Year? Last month, Pantone, the global color authority and provider of professional color language standards and digital solutions for the design community, announced PANTONE 17-5104 Ultimate Gray and PANTONE 13-0647 Illuminating, as the Pantone® Color of the Year selection for 2021. The color for 2020 was “Classic Blue.”

Indoor plants: They bring the calm of nature indoors, freshen the air and release oxygen and absorb carbon dioxide, eliminating harmful toxins from our homes.

Pantone Color Institute Executive Director Leatrice Eiseman says of the choice, “The union of an enduring Ultimate Gray with the vibrant yellow Illuminating expresses a message of positivity supported by fortitude.”

Durable fabrics: Life is messy. With more of us working from home or supervising virtual schooling, fabrics that are easier to clean and show less wear and tear are becoming more sought out. 22


To learn more about ways to incorporate these colors into your home elements, visit

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CHANNEL MARKERS - we’re just crazy about

Colorful Art by Tina Segal

Purchasing local art is a great way to add the finishing touches when decorating the rooms of your home.

Sometimes all you need to transform a space is an eye-catching piece of artwork. Supporting local artists is the perfect way to add in a pop of color that will also complement the home furnishings and décor that already exist in your home or office. Charlotte-based artist Tina Segal has a few different original paintings for sale at The Bungalow Home Market in Cornelius, from “Sunset Hues” to the “Multi-Color Circle Painting.” Both pieces are available for $595. Find these and other items by Segal, including custom upholstered waterfall benches, at The Bungalow Market, 19725 Oak Street, Unit 10, Cornelius, 24



Photo courtesy of Preservation North Carolina

CHANNEL MARKERS - bet you didn’t know

Top: Holly Bend was built between 1795-1800.

Holly Bend

Photos by Tim Buchman

Bottom: Legend says wood carvings in the home were made by German Hessians who fought for the British in the Revolutionary War.

One of Mecklenburg’s oldest surviving homes Holly Bend, one of Mecklenburg County’s oldest surviving homes, sits near the Catawba River below Cowans Ford Dam. Robert Davidson built the home between 1795-1800 on 420 acres of land given by his father, John Davidson. John’s name may be familiar as a revolutionary war figure and signer of the Mecklenburg County Declaration of Independence. He lived on the adjoining Rural Hill property, now operated as a historic home, farm and event site. The Holly Bend historic plantation sits between Rural Hill and Cowan’s Ford Nature Preserve along Neck Road. Named for the prevalent holly trees and location in a bend of the river, Holly Bend is most notable for its interior design work and preservation. “What makes Holly Bend truly significant is how it retains a high degree of integrity, especially on the inside,” says Stewart Gray of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission. “The vast majority of interior architecture, including pine floors, ceilings and walls, date from original construction. You can walk in and experience how the house was built in 1800. Holly Bend represents almost a museum-like experi26


by Martin Rose

ence,” Gray continues. “The exterior has gone through transitions like porches and additions to on the back, but the general form and style has largely been retained,” Gray says. “Holly Bend is an important artifact of the early 1800s.” Its nomination form for inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places describes the exterior as “finished quite plainly” but interior is described using words like “remarkable, lavish, exuberant and lively creativity.” Hand-carved wood decorates the house’s staircase, main fireplace mantels and trim around doors and windows, especially in large parlor. Legend says this wood carving was done by German Hessians who fought for the British in the Revolutionary War. Many Hessians deserted the British Army, settling here and bringing their skills to the area. Mecklenburg County secured ownership of Holly Bend and its 211 acres of land in 2009 and is responsible for the home and property. Holly Bend is not currently open to the public. Structural stabilization work began in late December while future use plans are being finalized.

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YOUNG LEADERS by Grace Kennedy Photo courtesy of The Lake Norman Teen Council

Leaders in the Making

Lake Norman Teen Council members learn through service

The Parks and Recreation Departments of Cornelius, Davidson and Huntersville are equipping young people with social, leadership, and community service opportunities, and they’re doing it all through one initiative. The Lake Norman Teen Council was established in 2007 with six members and has grown since then to its current size of more than forty members representing sixth through twelfth graders from Huntersville, Davidson and Cornelius. The Teen Council gives North Mecklenburg middle and high school students opportunities to develop a strong foundation through volunteering, social interaction, teamwork, and leadership development. Members participate in service projects, workshops, trips, fundraisers and more. Council members make a difference in the community by participating in supply drives for domestic abuse survivors, canned food drives for people experiencing food insecurity, cards for Veterans, score and stat keeping for sporting events, and helping at local holiday events and community festivals.

her community. “Teen Council is a great way to make friends, explore what great people live in the community, and learn leadership and team work skills. The people and team are kind and care about making a difference for everyone in the Council,” says Mancuso, whose favorite service project was preparing welcome bags for domestic abuse survivors living in shelters by filling purses with essential supplies like toothbrushes and shampoo. Past President Kendyl Brown says this particular supply drive is one of the highlights of the Council’s activities. “This service project always generated incredibly high participation, with us receiving hundreds of donations each year. It also initiated meaningful discussion about women’s issues and the state of our communities, which is incredibly important within our diverse group of members from many different schools and towns.”

Membership on the Lake Norman Teen Council also comes with plenty of social events, including mini-golf, paddle boarding, ice skating, attending state Youth Conferences, movie nights, ski trips, Charlotte Hornets games and more.

For her part, Brown appreciates the way her voice was heard when she was a Council member. “I participate in many civic and activism organizations, and too often I am the only woman in the room,” says the 18-year-old Pine Lake Preparatory graduate. “Within [the Teen Council} my voice was always heard, respected, and valued. I feel immensely humbled and empowered to have served as President during my senior year alongside such incredible women who I would not have met otherwise.”

Mae Mancuso, a 20-year-old Hough High graduate attending Central Piedmont Community College, says she loves how the Council allowed her to connect with so many charities and events throughout

Teens in sixth through twelfth grade can learn more about the Lake Norman Teen Council by visiting the Parks and Recreation websites for Huntersville, Davidson, or Cornelius.



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Two To The Tenth

Celebrating its ten-year anniversary, Brad Keselowski’s Checkered Flag Foundation rolls into a second decade by Mike Savicki | photography by Dana Jo Photography

A little more than ten years ago, while on a NASCAR service tour visiting a military medical center, a young driver named Brad Keselowski reconnected with a servicemember friend who was receiving inpatient treatment and struggling with combat related injuries sustained while on active duty in the Middle East. The coincidental encounter, while just one of many that Keselowski and his team made on the tour, left a mark on the driver. On an upward trajectory into NASCAR’s elite Cup Series, he was admittedly conflicted seeing those who were suffering. “It is overwhelming without a doubt in a lot of different ways,” Brad Keselowski shares as we reflect on his ten years both as 30


a Cup driver and as the catalyst of the Brad Keselowski Checkered Flag Foundation (BKCFF). “Emotionally overwhelming to see those who are in a spot of pain, (knowing) you can’t fix issues that a particular family is going through, you can only try to comfort, which a lot of times feels fruitless.” At the time of the encounter, Keselowski was trying to answer deeper, purposeful questions of his own. How could he give back? Where did he want to focus his work beyond the track? What was he passionate about doing to help others? When many young drivers would be content enough working solely towards finishes and results, Keselowski knew he had a bigger calling. His wider focus included being impactful,

making a difference, moving the needle. The encounter became a catalyst in his decision to start a foundation. Fast forward to 2020, a year Keselowski says was “a good year on the track, a strange (Covid-19) year off the track,” and his foundation is firing on all cylinders. With a mission of supporting veterans, injured service members, and first responders, he has cumulatively assisted more than 250 individuals and organizations across the country with $3.8 million dollars in support. He is listed as a Global Top 100 Philanthropist for his efforts. “You know the expression, ‘you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all’?” he tells me. “Well, it’s

Photo by Kevin McCarthy

for deserving veterans as part of the Checkered Flag Foundation’s Service Dog Fund. He works locally to ensure all veterans receiving care at Atrium Health Cabarrus are recognized and honored. And he ended 2020 outfitting seven veterans in tailored Ike Behar suits to assist with their transition to civilian life.

BKCFF awarded the Cabarrus Healthcare Foundation with a grant to launch the Veterans Recognition Program at Atrium Health Cabarrus, a program that ensures veterans receiving care at Atrium Health Cabarrus are recognized and honored.

more like ‘if you’ve seen one, you’ve seen one. Everybody’s story in life is different, everyone’s needs are different.” Inundated with requests for support and assistance, his team keeps their programs healthy and focused, oftentimes going the extra mile to streamline efforts and work directly with a recipient. Keselowski is a front man, he believes in appearing alongside recipients, hearing their stories, sharing their experiences. His efforts are marked. In 2016, he partnered with the Fisher House Foundation to fundraise and construct a state-of-the-art facility in his native Michigan to serve as a comfort home while a family member receives care in a VA clinic. The home quietly opened in spring 2020 in the midst of the pandemic. His 2020 Autotrader Tribute 2 Veterans campaign honored more than 178 veterans with their names riding along on the No. 2 Ford. In previous years, families were also welcomed to the track where they experienced every element of a race. Also, in 2020, the foundation’s Hero’s Homecoming program partnered with Black Paw Canine to train service dogs

We’re Here For You

“We talk a lot about our servicemen and women but one thing that stands out to me is the transition to normal civilian life and how difficult that can be,” he says. “Certainly, looking the part of a civilian can be challenging, the knowledge base of wearing a much different uniform. Helping them through that transition is something I’m glad to see come together.” He wants to do more, stating, “I get stuck on what we can do and what can be impactful.” Inasmuch as the Foundation has helped others, it has taught Keselowski lessons, too. “I think all in all it has been a great lesson in empathy, the reminder of what empathy is and should be. In a society that’s not really big on empathy, it’s easy to get lost. And humility grows out of it, too,” he offers. Listening to Keselowski describe his work, his passion, and his purpose off the track, I am reminded that the needs of others are so important, and the work he and his team are doing is so valuable and life changing, even in a time when so much is being asked of us. I’m looking forward to continuing my conversation with Keselowski ten years from now. His work, I believe, is just beginning.

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Now, more than ever, our homes have become our safe place, our workplace, our classroom, and a place to enjoy special times with our family. As we enter into the new year, many of us will be looking for new ways to turn our homes into the showplace we’ve always dreamed of. CURRENTS reached out to local homebuilders and designers and asked them to share favorite projects they’ve created over the past couple of years. The following pages will showcase those projects and give you a look into the talent and skills available to you when choosing to build, remodel, or simply redecorate the home you love. | JANUARY 2021



AR Homes, Monterey Bay - Charlotte ®

A Different Kind of Custom Builder Traditionally, few custom builders build model homes to showcase their craftsmanship, but AR Homes® is a different kind of luxury custom builder. The Monterey Bay – Charlotte franchise of AR Homes® has two open model homes in the Charlotte area, including the stunning new model in the Belleterre community in Huntersville. Unlike other builders who have a base price for a home but with a model that shows upgrades, AR Homes® believes in giving clients a transparent price that includes all of the features showcased in a model. That means that the level of features you see in the model are included in any home you build. In addition to the unique approach to showcasing a high-end home, AR Homes® also provides clients the ability to pick from a large collection of award-winning plans, modify exteriors and interiors or to work with an architect to design the perfect plan for your needs. The newly opened Arlington 1670 model includes many of the elements that clients continue to prize in their homes: unique exterior design, impressive foyer entry with curved stairs and plenty of light, both Master and Guest Suites on the main floor, large kitchen with hidden pantry, oversized utility room with 34


storage and functionality, and a large bonus room overlooking the media room. Along with the bar adjacent to the dining room, there is also a glass-enclosed wine room with brick detail and rugged shelving. For those working from home there is a Den and a secondary flex area that can serve as a second office or school room. The outdoor living includes a fireplace and kitchen with unique infinity-edge spa and pool. The showstopping Master bath includes large zero-entry wet-room, freestanding tub, and waterfall edge quartz counters. Outstanding design features are in every room of this home— mixed metal finishes, unique tile details, thoughtful wall and ceiling character and much more. If you appreciate exquisite design or are looking to build a custom home that you can visualize, a visit to the newest AR Homes® Model in Belleterre should be your fist stop. Visit for more information. Dawn Wilkinson, Sales Consultant 704.960.0667

Arlington Model Home Now Open 10114 LAURIER LANE, HUNTERSVILLE, NC 28078 An inspired lifestyle starts with your vision. Visit our designer model in Belleterre to discuss how we can bring your dream to life. Contact Dawn Wilkinson at 704-960-0667 for more information.

ARHOMESCHARLOTTE.COM ©2020 All rights reserved. Monterey Bay Homes – Charlotte, LIC71677, is an independently owned and operated franchise. | JANUARY 2021



Photography By Abbe McCracken

Laura Aguilar Interiors

Designs to Suit Every Member of the Family Laura Aguilar says she has always had an interest in designing and decorating, and after the purchase of her first home, she fell in love with transforming each individual room. She began helping friends and family with their own home décor, and then eventually became certified in Interior Design at UC Riverside in Southern California. Now based in Cornelius, Aguilar runs a full-service interior design firm that can help area residents achieve the home of their dreams without having to lift a finger. Her work has been featured here in CURRENTS, QC Exclusive and the Style Blue Print online publication. Her husband, a licensed contractor, recently joined the business, adding a comprehensive Design Build service to the company that is perfect for anyone looking for more extensive renovations or new builds. She also offers several other customizable design packages depending on the clients’ needs, including hourly consultations. Aguilar’s style has always been drawn to timeless design with a subdued, sophisticated palate. She is inspired by the architectural 36


elements of a home and always, by the needs of all her clients. She loves all her designs to include warmth, symmetry and finding that one special piece to truly personalize each space. When she designs a space, every family member is considered, and everything has its place, evoking a sense of order, peace, and beauty in all her clients’ homes. During the pandemic, Aguilar has had to pivot to doing a lot more virtual design presentations and meetings, and is thankful for the ease of using Zoom when consulting with clients. “We enjoy really showing our clients how to fully live in and enjoy their homes,” says Aguilar. “A home is usually your biggest investment, and we believe you should love every room in it. Showing our clients their home’s true potential is our number one goal.” 951.403.0582 E-mail: |

Photography By Tiffany Ringwald

Full Service Design Firm


McMillan Design Build

Designed and Built to Last for Generations McMillan Design Build approaches each project from the perspective of a builder who thinks like an architect, and an architect who thinks like a builder. “We offer full design and build services in-house,” describes owner Michael McMillan. “We provide our clients a unique and holistic experience to bring their projects to life from conceptual idea through the final stage of construction.” As a true design-build firm, McMillan Design Build listens to their clients’ dreams and understands their needs. Early on in the process, MDB chooses methods and materials that keep costs in line with finances. As a design-build firm, communication of the design and building needs are seamless, ensuring accurate estimating and pricing as designs and plans develop. This all-inclusive service adds efficiency and effectiveness to the planning, design and construction process leading to fulfillment of the client’s vision, property, lifestyle and budget. The services of McMillan Design Build include a dedication to creating a dynamic and accessible process for clients. MDB takes advantage of technology including the use of three-dimensional cameras to capture all of the home’s dimensions and systems. This capability allows clients to use 3D virtual reality to explore their 38


3D scan of MBD home under construction

project once construction commences. By utilizing this technology, MDB collaborates with engineers and trades in the most efficient and effective manner without requiring the need to travel to the client’s home for design or while under construction. McMillan Design Build listens to their client’s vision and presents elements of design for future livability. The firm views each of their homes as a system. “We like to think of a home like a human body, as it is a combination of systems that should work together. It is a science, and the home should be built to last for generations,” explains McMillan. MDB is a Certified Aging In Place (CAPS) specialist, designing living areas that are barrier free and universallydesigned. McMillan Design Build has been designing efficiently planned and livable spaces for their clients for over 20 years. As experts in design and fine homebuilding, the firm offers a full-service experience, bringing clients’ forever dream homes to life in the Lake Norman area. 980.483.1215

From Design to Build Building and renovating in the Lake Norman Community for over 20 Years!

980-483-1215 | JANUARY 2021



Kelly Cruz Interiors

Creating Quality Interiors and Lifestyles The college classes Kelly Cruz took at The Ohio State University College of Architecture/Interior Design and at the University of Kentucky that focused on architecture, engineering, interior design, textiles and color theory have served her well in creating inspired spaces for her clients. Cruz likes to say of her full-service design firm, “We don’t just create quality interiors, we create lifestyles.” Based in Davidson, Kelly Cruz Interiors also provides furnishings to clients that are price-point appropriate to the value of a home in turn-key fashion. The firm begins many of these projects before construction or remodeling begins and assist with space planning and construction selections for the interior and exterior of the home. Ordering manufacturer-direct offers furniture pricing competitive with big-box discount stores, offering a thorough and complete design service to the high-end and luxury markets. “I chose this career track for its diversity,” says Cruz. “Each project is different, and a new project starts frequently so it never feels mundane or repetitive. It also allows me to spend time in an office, in the field, in a client’s home, or in a showroom. Every day is different.” 40


A strong believer in supporting the community, Kelly Cruz Interiors has worked with various organizations like Hope of Mooresville (HOMe), which provides temporary housing and support to women and children escaping abusive situations. They also support Angels and Sparrows and the Cain Center for the Arts. Cruz says she is now conducting more virtual meetings than ever before. Normally, many of the firm’s clients move to the Lake Norman area from out of state or the project is in another area than the design studio, but the need has greatly increased due to the pandemic. There have also been industry-wide delays that have lengthened job completions, so she and her clients have had to adjust their expectations accordingly. “Understanding my client’s needs and style and providing what it takes to translate that into a beautiful and functional environment is my number one goal,” says Cruz. “Achieving that goal is the highest reward and a great sense of pride.” 704.895.2530



| JANUARY 2021



Shea Custom

The Custom Home of Your Dreams Buying a home is one of the most exciting and emotional decisions many of us make. Jessica Lundgren, a licensed real estate agent and Builder Representative for Shea Custom, says new home sales is even more rewarding because you have the opportunity to help customers choose their new home and watch as it takes shape. The company builds Shea Homes’ plans on land customers already own. Customers can build straight from Shea’s plans or work with an Architectural Designer to modify a plan to suit their needs. Shea handles everything from preparing the land, ensuring utilities get to the homesite, and everything in between.

The models at Shea Custom Homes have received many awards through the Parade of Homes, as well as the impressive Design Studio at national design competitions. The Shea team is also passionate about giving back to the community. They have helped with various non-profits over the years, and are currently involved with Project Renew, which helps train the disadvantaged in construction methods to help them gain access to the labor market. They also help with Right Moves for Youth, a private organization that helps disadvantaged children.

Customers can visit the 3,900-square-foot design studio, which is regularly updated to offer the latest selections in tile, flooring, countertops and more. If customers see a photograph at a place like Pinterest or Houzz, Shea has the flexibility to customize it for them.

Shea Custom is now offering virtual appointments via phone or video conferencing, and Lundgren says many points throughout the process can be decided in that way, ensuring the safety of all parties. Associates and customers wear masks when meeting in person. Customers can also visit Shea model homes by appointment, so they are the only ones in the home at the time.

“With Shea Custom you have all the advantages of a large builder (fixed contract pricing, full use Design Studio, and highly competitive price per square foot), but the flexibility and feel of a small custom builder,” says Lundgren. “It means our customers get the best of both worlds—a custom build for an excellent value.”

Jessica Lundgren, Builder Representative Shea Custom 8008 Corporate Center Dr Suite 300, Charlotte 704.602.3333 |





Photography By Dustin Peck

StarrMiller Interior Design

It’s All About You When designing a home, people tend to start with their public spaces, such as the kitchen, foyer, family room. The master bedroom, bath and closet are often last on the list. The rationale is that the public spaces are the ones most people will see and therefore they are the most important. If 2020 has taught us anything, it is to look after ourselves and our need for a perfect sanctuary. The master suite is YOUR space. It is where you go for relaxation. It is where you can be you and not be parent, host, teacher, Zoom participant, handyman, dish washer, laundry master or anything else your friends and family need. When a space is designed that you can call your own, we can really sort through what YOU want. The color is about you, not some random ‘color of the year’. The texture is about you and how you relax, the view is yours, the bathtub is jetted, sculptural or nonexistent because that is what you need and want. All of the details of the master space are only about you and your partner. Freedom! Once you have exercised this freedom in your private spaces, you 44


are more likely going to insert your need of function and aesthetic in the rest of your home. This focus helps clear the clutter of HGTV and trends, and allows you to focus on the best parts of your family expression and life goals. The number one thing we hear from prospective clients is that all of our work looks completely customized from project to project. This is because we work to bring out our client’s personalities in the design, not our own. Some are quirky, some are contemporary and yet others are traditional in their design. Many have pets that need to be accommodated and all of them are as individual as their DNA. We celebrate those differences and work to find ways to bring that DNA into each design. The number one thing we hear from clients is, “This is me!” 19732 One Norman Blvd., #350, Cornelius 704.896.3321 | | JANUARY 2021



Pippin Home Designs

Home Discovery Process Key to Designing Award Winning Home Can you picture yourself in the home of your dreams? Are you on a mountaintop with panoramic views of the Appalachia, or perhaps lakeside with loved ones? Jenny Pippin, award-winning residential designer and founder of Pippin Home Designs focuses on what makes your life truly unique as she designs your dream home into reality. “It all starts with a conversation that can get pretty intimate. The house begins to take shape in my mind in 3-D, so it’s important for me to know exactly how each client lives and functions in their current home and how they want their lives to improve in their new home,” describes Pippin of her You-Inspired Discovery Process. The process dives into Six Value Enhancers: (1) your finances and desires, (2) ease and comfort, (3) flow and harmony, (4) health and vitality, (5) love and happiness, and (6) fun and enjoyment. This 2020 AIBD award-winning home on Lake Norman was designed for a couple who dreamt of a comfortable, functional home with spectacular lake views, that nurtured family gatherings with their grandchildren and supported their love of entertaining. Pippin’s ability to see the constraints dictated by the building site allowed her to maximize the couple’s desires with a few clever 46


solutions. “Garage configuration was key,” states Pippin. “We were able to accomplish a lot more with a simple shift from sideloaded to street-facing garages. We used the slope of the land to our advantage and designed a walkout basement for ultimate entertaining with a large rec room, snack bar and fire pit.” An open concept interior with multiple large windows created an abundance of natural light throughout the home and a stunning first impression view from the front door all the way to the beach where their grandchildren play. The wife’s passion for painting with her grandchildren inspired a fun and functional studio, designed with plywood and laminate finishes, giving them the freedom to paint without worry. The owners are elated with their one-of-a-kind home, grateful for Pippin Home Designs: “We want to thank Jenny for designing such a beautiful sanctuary. It is warm and open, just what we envisioned. Our grandchildren really enjoy visiting us and it has given them a place that they feel safe and loved.” Jennifer Beaman Pippin, FAIBD, CPBD, CGP Pippin Home Designs, Inc.

This renovationHario ea alit dignatus. Estio te nonem adigeniae idit ut doluptae officto excerent volum dempos aut restem aliqui volorehendis rem sus pro vel | JANUARY 2021



Homestyles Interior Design

Experience and resources bring your vision to life. All great interiors start with a great plan. That’s the motto of Homestyles Interior Design, in business for 23 years. Founded by Wendy Yeakley, the firm now also employs designers including Brittany Raines who has been with the firm since 2007. Through the years Brittany has learned all aspects of full-service interior design and leads many of her own projects for the firm. Offering a full range of services including construction and renovation design, space planning, paint selections, furniture and lighting design and window treatments, the team works hard at getting their clients new design ahead of what’s currently trending on social media. Using their design skills to help nonprofits is also important to the team. The Homestyles team designed the Susan G. Komen Charlotte 2020 Build for the Cure showhome. Yeakley and Raines also worked on a room for the 2020 IDS Showhome Tour benefitting 48


several area nonprofits. Yeakley feels experience is the team’s number one asset to clients as well as their ability to create a client’s vision for their home, even if they cannot describe it themselves. They also have stocking dealer status with many great brands of furniture and lighting, allowing them to pass along substantial discounts to their clients. The team has grown to five, including a new design assistant who is now following in Brittany’s footsteps by learning all aspects of fullservice design, one project at a time. 704.906.7469

Interior Design with a strong focus on the client’s vision space planning, lighting, furniture, new construction or renovation, color consultation, window treatments, art and accessories 704-906-7469


Homestyles Interior Design



| JANUARY 2021


Leave your mark on Lake Norman history Globally Inspired Home Decor & Gifts

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Cain Center for the Arts is building a regional arts and community center for all of Lake Norman. With your help, this center can open in 2022 and will bring opportunities for all of the communities in the Lake Norman Region to come together and enjoy live music, plays, art, dance, festivals, conferences, and more. You can secure your piece of history by purchasing a personalized brick that will be permanently placed in the plaza or lobby.

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Mothers & Daughters Meet the

e g n e ll a h C

Service projects this year have included making masks for FeedNC and the Mooresville Christian Mission.



photo by Gayle Shomer Photography

When the Unexpected Happened, the Lake Norman Chapter of National Charity League, Inc. Exceeded Expectations

Back row, L to R: Tina Weatherford-Treasurer Jane Ann Moorefield - VP Communications Jennifer Tiefer - VP Provisionals Valorie Liggett- Parliamentarian Laurie Mason - VP Ticktockers Sheila Hebert - VP Philanthropy Front Row, L to R: Angie Mitchell - Secretary Wendy Shuping - President Elect Jennifer Puncochar - President Jodene Marsh - VP Membership Not pictured: Christy Sandlin - VP Patroness Photo taken at Johnson Carriage House and Meadows.

by Grace Kennedy candid photography courtesy of Sheila Hebert

What did the members of the Lake Norman Chapter of National Charity League do when COVID-19 hit early in a year full of in-person events? They did exactly what resourceful moms do when presented with enormous challenges: they figured out a way to make it work. “I have never been more proud of our organization than I am this year,” says VP of Membership Jodene Marsh. “COVID-19 hit right when our program year was starting. We could have held back but we came together as a board and figured out how we could help the community without leaving our homes.” While 2020 marks the 95th year of the National Charity League, Inc. (NCL), the local chapter, which serves Mooresville and surrounding towns, began in 2017. Since then, it has grown from 50 to more than 200 members. The 240th NCL Chapter to form in the U.S., Lake Norman seeks to foster the mother-daughter relationship by serving the community together. | JANUARY 2021


NAVIGATORS Members participated in yoga with llamas in one group outing.

Ticktockers and Patronesses

Multi-generational service is at the heart of NCL, Inc. “Today kids are running in 90,000 different directions and this gives us a chance to get close to our daughters and imprint on them the values of volunteering, learning leadership skills, and promoting a self starting attitude,” says VP of Philanthropy Sheila Hebert. The mothers in NCL, Inc. are known as Patronesses, while the daughters are called Ticktockers. Being a Patroness means working alongside your daughter to broaden her worldview, while collaborating with talented women in the community to advance the mission of the organization. The Ticktocker experience is a small group leadership program where young women learn the inherent reward of helping others, hone tolerance and kindness, and build confidence and maturity while making lifelong friends. Each grade level has its own board, creating plenty of opportunities for Ticktockers to become leaders. “They are learning skills to set them up for the future,” says Chapter President-Elect Wendy Shuping. “Our daughters are learning from watching us, as we try to set an example so they can be good leaders and help their community.”

“It is such a unique experience,” says tenth-grader Lily Shuping. “You get to meet so many mothers and daughters, and you can make great bonds with each other.” Much of that bonding comes with the comprehensive slate of community service projects the Chapter takes on, even during a global pandemic.

“Whatever we can do”

The Lake Norman Chapter program calendar begins in the spring, and there was an exciting mix of service projects and cultural events planned for the group. Then COVID-19 hit. As determined women do, the members came up with ways to continue advancing their mission while keeping everyone safe and healthy.





704) 873-4719







The NCL, Inc. Lake Norman Chapter completed more than 2,900 hours of philanthropy in 2020.

“I am most proud of how we were able to pivot from in-person volunteering to finding ways to do things from home that would still benefit the organizations we work with in a meaningful way,” says Chapter President Jennifer Puncochar. One of their challenges was figuring out how to continue their special relationship with the residents of Accordius Health nursing facility in Mooresville. While their typical in-person activities like playing BINGO with residents were impossible, the group was able to participate in a COVID-safe parade that included

residents’ family members. Bringing joy to people who had not seen visitors in months was an unforgettable experience for the mothers and daughters in the Chapter. As 2020 was winding down, the Chapter had already completed 2,900 hours of philanthropy — nearly double the total hours from the previous year — and their program year doesn’t end until March. While the year didn’t look like the National Charity League members expected, they were still able to make a lasting difference in the community they call home.

NCL, Inc. Lake Norman Chapter is having a membership drive for rising 7th through 10th graders until January 12, 2021. Those who inquire after January 12 will be notified when the next membership drive opens. Contact to learn more.


Providing tax, bookkeeping and payroll services to the Lake Norman area since 2006

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Pivot. Plan. Adapt. Repeat. The business of operating recreation for youth changes with COVID-19 by Sara Coleman | photography by Jon Beyerle



Employees at area recreational sports programs are working tirelessly to ensure young athletes continue to stay active during the pandemic. Below: Local youth participate in a “Polar Bear” Flag Football clinic offered through Cornelius PARC.

To say 2020 has brought us a new way of living would be a severe understatement, with almost every aspect of life affected by COVID-19 in some form. In March of 2020, when restrictions and new guidelines were put into place, it impacted the Lake Norman community in a variety of ways. But one group of workers and volunteers were forced to get creative almost overnight—the leaders of our local parks and recreation departments, particularly with youth sports. Troy Fitzsimmons, Director of PARC athletics for the Town of Cornelius, talks about the enormous challenges the staff of PARC has undertaken to continue offering sports and recreational programming. “It takes a lot, and the position the Town of Cornelius is in is we are going to follow the Governor’s guidelines, stay compliant, and deliver as much as possible within the guidelines. Our goal continues to be to provide safe programs for citizens.” When the first mandates were introduced in March of 2020, the Town of Cornelius shut down all programming. But then slowly as guidelines were updated, the town carefully re-introduced programming and use of facilities (except playgrounds), by adapting new rules. As summer and fall arrived, playgrounds opened but updates were implemented to provide safe environments for the citizens, such as mask mandates and maintaining six feet apart while using PARC facilities. And when new mandates are issued by the Governor’s office for residents of North Carolina, the PARC staff quickly updates the guidance and information for using the recreational facilities. For instance, when the 10 p.m. curfew was recently introduced, the lighted facilities revised the operating hours and ensured the lights would turn off at 10 p.m. It meant contacting the sports leagues to remind them to finish or suspend play by that time as well. | JANUARY 2021



Safety in sports Looking ahead, there are numerous examples of keeping youth sports and recreational programming going throughout Winter of 2021 and beyond. From the “Polar Bear” Winter League of Flag Football, to Lake Norman Little League, safety will remain the number one priority. PARC also continues to provide residents virtual learning centers, called the PARC Plus program. This allows children a safe environment at the Cornelius Arts Center to use the Wi-Fi, complete their virtual schoolwork, plus have a little extra fun with arts, crafts, and activities during breaks. Brandon Edwards, who is Director of Baseball and Flag Football with HYAA sports, discusses navigating the challenging environment for youth sports right now. “Our number one priority is to keep our athletes and families healthy and safe. Trying to run a rec program during a pandemic has definitely been challenging, but when coaches, players, and parents all cooperate it makes the process more doable and successful.”

Cooperation is key HYAA, which is a 100 percent volunteer-led sports league, has implemented new rules for basketball during Winter 2021. For starters, it includes limiting participation to 50 percent capacity. All coaches and players must have their temperatures checked prior to entering the gym and wear a mask during practice. Finally, once games begin, only one parent per player will be allowed to enter the gym. HYAA has enforced strict sanitization practices, including the use of a safe, eco-friendly, EPA-approved germicidal to clean the basketballs. From increased sanitization to modified schedules, all indications are this will continue into 2021, with HYAA and other organizations doing what’s necessary to maintain sports and programming. Edwards goes on to say, “By continuing to offer these programs, we are giving youth the opportunity to exercise and have social interaction with limitations. While it may not be the ‘normal’ they are used to, it’s as close to normal as we can get right now.” Fitzsimmons says he and the PARC staff have adopted a new motto for 2020 and beyond, borrowed from the old Clint Eastwood movie Heartbreak Ridge. “Adopt. Improvise. Overcome.” Recreational sports programs are all living by this and working tirelessly to continue offering programming for everyone. 58


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206 Joe V. Knox Ave. Suite J Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-360-4801

359 Williamson Road Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-235-1829

PHC – Full Circle Family Medicine James W. McNabb, MD Ann Cowen, ANC-P Jacqueline Swope, FNP

PHC – Cardiology Jips Zachariah, MD


PHC – Mooresville Dermatology Center Naomi Simon, MD Kristin Prochaska, PA-C Gina Noble, PA-C 128 Medical Park Road, Suite 201 Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-235-1827

PHC – Wolfe Dermatology Steven F. Wolfe, MD Molly Small, PA-C

114 Gateway Blvd., Unit D Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-663-2085

Riva Dermatology

“Imagine your skin at its Best!” General Dermatology for the Family, Botox, Fillers, Laser/IPL & more

Kerry Shafran, MD, FAAD Lindsay Jayson, MPAS, PA-C Erin Dice, MPAS, PA-C Ashley Noone, MPAP, PA-C Nikki Leahy, MSBS, PA-C Mari Klos, CMA, LME

704-896-8837 Cornelius, Mooresville, Denver

Ears, Nose and Throat

PHC – Lake Norman Ear, Nose, & Throat Keith Meetze, MD Thomas Warren, MD Herb Wettreich, MD Fred New, Jr., ANP 140 Gateway Blvd. Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-664-9638

Family Medicine Iredell Family Medicine Jodi Stutts, MD Lori Sumner, PA Kristie Smith, MSN, FNP Howard Suls, MD

544 Brawley School Road Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-360-5190

435 East Statesville Avenue Mooresville, NC 28115 • 704-663-5056

PHC – Fairview Family Medicine Golnar Lashgari, MD Jennifer Scharbius, MD

150 Fairview Road, Suite 210 Mooresville, NC 28117 •704-235-0300

PHC - Troutman Family Medicine Amrish C. Patel, MD Amanda Honeychuck, NP Lauren Brannon, NP 154 S Main Troutman, NC 28166 • 704-528-9903


Charlotte Gastroenterology and Hepatology John H. Moore, III, M.D. Steven A. Josephson, M.D. Scott A. Brotze, M.D. Michael W. Ryan, M.D. Devi Thangavelu, M.D. Vinaya Maddukuri, M.D. Nicholas R. Crews, M.D.

Lake Norman Offices: 13808 Professional Center Dr. Huntersville, NC 28078 115 Commerce Pointe Blvd. Mooresville, NC 28117 Appointment Line: 704-377-0246 Locations also in Charlotte, Mint Hill, Matthews, and Ballantyne

PHC –Northlake Digestive Care Carl A. Foulks, Jr., MD April Lockman, NP

359 Williamson Road Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-878-2021

PHC –Comprehensive Digestive Care Center Vivek Trivedi, MD Tiedre Palmer, FNP-C

359 Williamson Road Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-878-2021

Internal Medicine PHC – Internal Medicine & Weight Management Manish G. Patel, MD Julie Abney, PA Andrea Brock, PA-C

128 Medical Park Road, Suite 101 Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-658-1001

PHC – Lake Norman Internal Medicine John C. Gatlin, MD LuAnne V. Gatlin, MD 548 Williamson Road, Suite 6 Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-660-5520

Stout Internal Medicine & Wellness Dr. Sam Stout Andrea Colvin, NP 444 Williamson Road, Suite B Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-360-9310


PHC – Neurology & Sleep Medicine Dharmen S. Shah, MD 359 Williamson Road Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-873-1100

PHC – Lake Norman Neurology Andrew J. Braunstein, DO Ryan Conrad, MD Craig D. DuBois, MD Douglas Jeffery, MD Roderick Elias, MD

124 Professional Park Dr, Ste A Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-662-3077

PHC – Lake Norman Neurology Andrew J. Braunstein, DO Ryan Conrad, MD Craig D. DuBois, MD Douglas Jeffery, MD Roderick Elias, MD

9735 Kincey Avenue, Ste 203 Huntersville, NC 28078 • 704-766-9050

NeuroSurgery- Spine Iredell NeuroSpine Peter Miller, MD, Ph.D.

544 Brawley School Road 28117 Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-954-8277

Obstetrics/Gynecology PHC – Lake Norman OB/GYN James Al-Hussaini, MD Laura Arigo, MD Katie Collins, DO Grant Miller, MD James Wilson, MD Nicole S. Wellbaum, MD Coral Bruss, ANP-C


Southern Oncology Specialists William Mitchell, MD Poras Patel, MD

46 Medical Park Rd, Suite 212 Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-659-7850

Orthopaedic Surgery Iredell Orthopaedic Center Jason Batley, MD

544 Brawley School Road Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-658-0956

PHC – Piedmont Bone & Joint Scott Brandon, MD Brett L. Feldman, MD Alex Seldomridge III, MD Kim Lefreniere, PA-C Sherry Dawn Repass, FNP-BC

359 Williamson Road Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-235-1829

Orthopedic Surgery – Spine PHC – Piedmont Bone & Joint Alex Seldomridge, III, MD

359 Williamson Road Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-235-1838

Physiatry –Interventional Spine Care PHC –Govil Spine & Pain Care Harsh Govil, MD, MPH April Hatfield, FNP-C

359 Williamson Road Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-235-1829

Primary Care

Iredell Primary Care for Women Eva Imperial, MD, FAAFP

114 Gateway Blvd, Suite B Mooresville, NC 28117 • 980-435-0406

PULMONOLOGY PHC –Pulmonology Enrique Ordaz MD Jose Perez MD Ahmed Elnaggar, MD

125 Days Inn Drive, Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-838-8240


PHC – Rheumatology Sean M. Fahey, MD Dijana Christianson, DO

128 Medical Park Road, Suite 101 Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-658-1001

131 Medical Park Road, Suite 102 Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-663-1282

Occupational Medicine Iredell Occupational Medicine Joe Wolyniak, DO

128 E. Plaza Dr., Unit 3 Mooresville, NC 28115 • 980-444-2630 | JANUARY 2021


Dine + Wine Eating, drinking, cooking and fun

The Tomahawk Ribeye at Link & Pin Northcross.

p. 62 Link & Pin Northcross opens in Huntersville. p. 64 Fish and Chips at Jeffrey’s. p. 66 Noodle-less Butternut Squash and Spinach Lasagna

Photography Courtesy of Link & Pin

p. 68 BrickTree Brewing Co. collaborates with community | JANUARY 2021


DINE+WINE - nibbles + bites


Huevos Rancheros, featured on Link & Pin’s brunch menu.

Rob Duckworth expands the Link & Pin concept to Huntersville An invitation to a party on Lake Norman in the mid-1990s changed the course of restauranteur Rob Duckworth’s life. “We went down for the weekend,” says Duckworth, “and I fell in love with it (Charlotte). The people are super friendly. The climate is better. You’re close to beaches. You’re close to the mountains. What’s not to love about this area? I still feel that way today.” In mid-October, Duckworth opened a second Link & Pin in the Northcross Shopping Center in Huntersville. The restaurant features a three-sided bar, a centerpiece among the booths and tables throughout the 6,300-square-foot space. Local artist David 62


by Vanessa Infanzon

Merck painted a mural of a train in the countryside above the bar. It pays homage to Charlotte’s history with the railroad. It’s also a nod to the railroad terms used for the restaurant’s name, Link & Pin, which Duckworth credits his son Jake Duckworth. Duckworth grew up in Huntington, W. Va. He owned several 7-11 convenience stores in the Charleston, W. Va. area when he visited Lake Norman. He and his young family moved to Huntersville in 1999 to open a convenience store, Duckworth’s Food Market in Mooresville, on an acre of land. When he realized the location could be a destination spot for a restaurant, he launched the first Duckworth’s Grill & Taphouse.

Photography Courtesy of Link & Pin


Photography by Lisa Crates Photography

Since 2004, Duckworth has introduced Link & Pin in South End, five Duckworth’s Grill & Taphouses in the Charlotte region and The Cellar at Duckworth’s in uptown Charlotte. Three more concepts are in the restauranteur’s future, but the timing depends on how the pandemic affects the process. Link & Pin offers lunch and dinner during the week and is open for brunch and dinner on the weekends.

Chef-driven menu

Dishes like Huevos Rancheros with chorizo, fried eggs, salsa macha, avocado crema, feta and Shrimp & Grits with andouille, cheddar grits, charred corn and topped with a sunny side egg grace Link & Pin’s menu. Kitchen staff arrive as early as 7 a.m. to prepare the food for the day. Sauces, dumplings and lobster rolls (cut from whole lobster) are made in house. “Most of our items are scratch made,” says Duckworth. “It just takes a long time to prepare. We don’t buy them ready to use. We use top quality ingredients. We don’t skimp on quality. Those are the things that make it chef-driven.” Executive Chef David Quintana oversees the menu. He tests new recipes during the year. When it’s time to add new menu ideas, Duckworth asks the chefs to develop dishes for taste tests. “We’ll give them a little bit of guidelines,” explains Duckworth, “and then say, ‘Be creative. Give us whatever you think.’” Guests at Link & Pin can expect five options for its popular Pittsburgh-style steaks: Cowboy Ribeye, Bone-in Filet, Filet Mignon, Kansas City Strip and the Tomahawk Bone-in Ribeye. “We’ve become quickly known for our steaks,” says Duckworth. “It has a charred exterior and you get that from an extremely hot broiler.”

Mini Ahi Tuna Tacos, Chicken & Waffles (handmade to order) and whole flounder or Branzino (European sea bass) are also favorites with diners.

Food you cAn tAste!

Scratch-made cocktails

Ten years ago, Duckworth spent four days in New York City with his head mixologist, Ron Oleksa. Their mission was to learn everything they could about craft cocktails. Oleksa created a cocktail menu by experimenting with recipes, ingredients and portions. Link & Pin, like all the Duckworth brands, make the juices in batches using house recipes. “Ron is responsible for the cocktails you see on all of our menus today from Duckworth’s to The Cellar to the Link & Pin,” Duckworth explains. “He will come up with seasonal changes.”

gluten friendly


9709-A Sam Furr Rd, Huntersville Northcross Shopping Center TheLostCajunHuntersville

980.689.2924 |

The menu features the classics such as the Moscow Mule and the Old Fashioned. The Southend, rye whiskey and amaro stirred with bitters, and the Fig Manhattan, house-infused fig bourbon with amaro are Oleksa’s original recipes. For an unusual experience, try the Blackberry Buttons. The blackberry, lemon juice and tequila make for a tasty drink and attractive presentation. It’s the edible flower called the Szechuan button (also called a buzz button) that sits at the top that requires some direction from the trained staff: “You eat the button,” explains Duckworth. “It will make your tongue numb for a couple of minutes. People get a kick out of it because it’s a unique experience.” Link & Pin Northcross 9723 Sam Furr Road, Huntersville 704.997.6047 | JANUARY 2021


DINE+WINE - wine time

Sumptuous &


by Trevor Burton photography by Trevor Burton

Pairing wine with two old favorites at Jeffrey’s

Pair the fish and chips and French onion soup at Jeffrey’s with a California Zinfandel.

As I discovered when my wife, Mary Ellen, and I stopped in for dinner, there’s a lot to like about the wine list at Jeffrey’s Restaurant. It’s evident that a lot of thought and care has gone into it. The list is pleasingly broad. It goes from simple, everyday wines to a set of reserve wines for when you want to really treat yourself. What tickled my fancy was a large list of wines by the glass, a dozen of them for just the red wines. These were not your “usual suspects.” There were wines from different regions. Wines that lead to going tasting and exploring—I like that. I’ll get back to the wines later. Let’s talk about food. Jeffrey’s Restaurant is based on dishes that are old favorites. Old favorites that are prepared from great ingredients and with lots of culinary care. Dining there is like visiting a favorite, comfortable bistro. There are plenty of dishes to choose from but, after a quick look at the menu, I was headed in a well-trodden direction. Two things. First, I’ve never been medically tested but I believe that I’m psychologically imprinted by fish and chips. I was brought up on the dish and I order it almost every time I come across it. Second, I’m on a world-wide study of French onion soup. I’ve tasted soups all around the globe and one thing that I’ve found out is that the French do not have a monopoly on quality. So, let’s start, as I did at Jeffrey’s, with a bowl of onion soup. I could go on with a long culinary description, but two things cover it pretty well. The soup was so dense that I, sometimes, had to use a knife and fork to get into it. One thing that I enjoy with a good version of this dish is picking away at the cheese that is, inevitably, left on the edge of the bowl. This bowl went back to Jeffrey’s kitchen totally clean. 64


Fish and chips—cod ‘cause I could. When it comes to this dish, I have but one request—malt vinegar. Many restaurants turn up their noses at that basic request; preferring, instead, to gentrify the dish with tartar sauce. Not so at Jeffrey’s; malt vinegar was definitely an option. So, what wine to go with these, to me, sumptuous dishes? That’s where Jeffrey’s wine by the glass list of red wines kicked in. I like to think that, for the onion soup, I selected the best value offered on the list. It was a Zinfandel from California’s Lake County. Lake County straddles the area to the north of where Napa Valley and Sonoma come together. It’s a wine region that’s overshadowed by its two neighbors. I’m a huge fan of Zinfandel wines from Sonoma and the chance to explore Lake County was irresistible. The wine was lighter and fruitier than Zinfandels from Sonoma, delightful as a companion to onion soup. I chose to do a little more exploring when it came to my psychologically imprinted, main dish. My fancy got well and truly tickled. I’m always drawn to wines from Paso Robles in California’s Central Coast region. Paso Robles soils are completely different to those found in Napa Valley and it shows in the wine. Paso Robles is famous for its Rhône style wines but Cabernet Sauvignon is starting to make a name for itself. So, I treated myself to a smooth, Paso Robles Cabernet Sauvignon. Another winner. This was a great experience. Two of my “must have” dishes and a chance to go on a wine exploration venture. Next time we’ll have to dine with friends and dig into the vast choice of bottles of wine. I have my contact list at the ready.


art, toys, games, gifts, home decor

customize your order today! Bob Weir’s Wood Art 704-756-0909


Estate Planning & Administration: Wills, Trusts, Powers of Attorney, Healthcare Directives, Guardianships, Probate




ContaCt us for your free 1 hour initial Consultation 704.997.7075 | 442 S. Main Street, Suite 5 | Davidson, NC 28036 | JANUARY 2021


DINE+WINE | in the kitchen



NOODLE-LESS BUTTERNUT SQUASH AND SPINACH LASAGNA January and the start of a new year is often a time for rebooting the body. Sometimes the very comfort foods we crave this time of year are the ones we are asked to limit or avoid. Welcome this little gem: noodleless lasagna! Cook the noodles before assembling to ensure no guesswork when baking and faster time from oven to table. This dish is so warming and flavor filled it will even satisfy the meat lovers in your life. You ‘butternut’ miss whipping this up! Ingredients: 1 cup freshly finely grated parmesan cheese 1 large onion finely chopped 4 oz (1 small package) soft goats’ cheese or blue cheese (if that’s more your style) 3 large garlic cloves, crushed 1 1/2 tsp dried herbs (thyme, rosemary, tarragon or sage or combo of all of these) 5 cups (5 oz) chopped fresh spinach, kale, or collard leaves 1 long thick-necked butternut squash Instructions: Prepare the squash noodles. Slice the top stem off the squash and cut it where the neck ends and the bottom bulb begins. Reserve the bulbs for stews, soups, or salads. Peel the skin with a vegetable peeler and then place each squash upright on a cutting board to slice it into ¼ inch thick strips. (This can also be done using a mandolin slicer, just be mindful of your hands). Place squash slices (between 10-13) in a single layer on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake at 375F for about 15 minutes until softened. Set aside. In a small pan melt the soft cheese with 1/3 cup of boiling water, 1 tsp of herbs, and 1 crushed garlic clove. Set aside. In a large frying pan, saute the onions on low covered for about 7-10 minutes until softened. Add in spinach and crushed garlic cloves and cook until wilted. To assemble, grease a 8x8 in baking dish with a little oil or butter and use a third of the sauce to line the bottom. Top with half the squash slices, and the spinach onion mixture and half the parmesan. Finish with the rest of the squash, sauce, and cheese in that order and sprinkle with herbs. To serve, bake at 375F for 30-35 minutes until bubbling and lightly browned. Serve warm in squares.

Roberson y by Glenn Photograph

Serves 4-6



Jill Dahan lives in Cornelius and is the author of Starting Fresh! Recipes for Life. You can learn more about her at To learn more about her nonprofit, Sunninghill Jill Kids, visit

Creative Gifting, Local Artists, Custom Florals & Silks


Next . .

Do you have an interesting wedding story that has ties to the Lake Norman area? If so, we’d love to talk to you for our upcoming bridal issue in March! E-mail Renee@ with the details to be considered.

751 Hwy 16, Denver | 704-489-6202 Check us out on Facebook @AlbertineFlorals Watch for pop up markets and wine tasting events!

We are ready for you ...

• 15 min free consultations • Flexible & accommodating for your schedule • COVID-19 & health conscious • 30 years combined experience • Salon Certifications: Loreal Professional Baxter for Men Deva for Curly Hair • Also Offering vegan, ph. balanced, gluten free Our Mission: “To be on the cutting edge of the beauty industry’s trends. We promise to provide our products that are not employees with the most up to date education & training along with positive encouragement, and our tested on animals guests with outstanding customer service in a positive and professional, yet relaxed and fun atmosphere.” 4359 NC-16 SUITE 4 DENVER, NORTH CAROLINA WWW.VITASTILE.COM | 704-966-1055 VITASTILEHAIRDESIGNSNC | VITASTILE_HAIRDESIGNS | JANUARY 2021


DINE+WINE | on tap

Collaborating with the Community

Two friends bring the craft beer experience to Lincolnton by Lara Tumer photogrpahy by Jamie Cowles

John Brinsfield and Fritz Steckler are bringing their love of creating craft beers to the Lake Norman community of Lincolnton with their newly opened brewery, BrickTree Brewing Co. The two are co-workers, turned friends, turned business partners, both with a passion for quality beer. It wasn’t long ago that Brinsfield was visiting Asheville, enjoying the plethora of breweries the city has to offer. He wondered out loud what it might be like to own and operate his own, and with a listening ear and a nudge in the right direction from his now wife, the idea was set into motion. Days later, he spent his lunch break shopping for the necessary supplies, and that night, took a crack at his own beer. He admits, “It went horribly wrong, but I completed the process anyway.” With a bit of experimentation and some advice from his pal Fritz, who had been home brewing for more than 20 years, he began brewing successfully. From there, the two started working together with a goal of building recipes and maintaining consistency.

The support of Lincolnton Lincolnton was selected as the home of the BrickTree from the start. The co-owners were looking for a spot with little to no saturation of existing breweries and couldn’t be more pleased with their decision. They attribute much of the success of their business not only to the community of patrons, but to those in the city who were there to hold their hands before the doors even opened. They specifically mentioned the following people 68


and their aid during construction and the entire opening process: Rhonda Hunter with the Lincoln Economic Development Association (LEDA) and her team, Mayor Ed Hatley and the City Council, Steve Zickefoose (City Manager), Laura Elam and her team in planning and development and William Heafner with Piedmont Companies.

Seasonal flavors When it comes to developing recipes, the time of year plays a huge role in deciding on flavors. Heavier beers like their Irish Stout and their Baltic porter are some of the most popular winter beers. These darker beers have deeper and more robust flavor profiles, similar to roasted coffee and perfect for warming the soul during chillier months. New recipes are consistently in development, with specific choices when it comes to the source of their hops and grains, deciding what yeast to use, and more. They want the experience of both flavor and aroma to be perfect. With feedback from their customers and sometimes a leap of faith, their winning recipes are born. Brinsfield and Stecker opened doors mid-July, and given the pandemic are enamored by their success thus far. The love for their community is apparent. “Watching the smiles and laughter of people enjoying beer we’ve created feels like the real measure of success.” | JANUARY 2021


Special Advertising Feature Meet Jason Rindskopf, WMCP® and Derek Bostian, CFP® . They are ready to help you with your important retirement planning decisions.

Tax Savings Opportunities For The New Year


atman had Robin. Captain America had Bucky Barnes. Who is your retirement sidekick? Maybe it’s your spouse or a companion that you’re planning to travel the world with. The last person, we bet, that you want to have riding shotgun with you in retirement is Uncle Sam. Fortunately, with the passing of The Tax Cut and Jobs Act at the end of 2017, the SECURE Act at the end of 2019, and new tax legislation during the COVID-19 pandemic, new tax savings opportunities have presented themselves, and if you’re preparing for retirement, you should be aware. Before we jump in, we want to emphasize that this is a limited opportunity. The 2017 rules are scheduled to expire in 2025 (if they don’t disappear sooner under the new administration). Here are three of the biggest tax savings opportunities that may benefit your bottom line in 2021. 1. Take the Standard Deduction Later The tax rules nearly doubled the standard deduction and did away with many write- offs, removing the tax benefit of itemizing deductions for most taxpayers. An old accounting trick means you can still optimize your deductions under the new rules by “bunching” itemized deductions in a single year to get over the standard deduction and then taking the standard deduction the following year—potentially maximizing your tax savings multiple years in a row.

you’re 70½, allowing you to exclude up to $100,000 from your gross income (with certain restrictions). 3. Lower Your Taxable Income with a Roth Conversion A Roth conversion is a great way to permanently lower your taxable income in retirement by converting tax-deferred assets into tax-free assets and paying taxes on the conversion in an optimal tax year (like under today’s favorable tax brackets or if your retirement assets lost value this year). Unless you expect your taxes to be lower in future years, now may be an ideal opportunity for a Roth conversion. Is your current financial professional looking at your tax return? We use financial modeling software to show you exactly how your overall picture is affected by new tax rules and temporary updates. If you and your financial advisor aren’t combing through your tax return to find missed opportunities, email us at to schedule your own discovery meeting to learn if these strategies may make sense for you. Your tax reduction partners, Derek Bostian, CFP® | Jason Rindskopf, WMCP® Two Waters Wealth Management | 704.275.2500

2. Give Money to Your Favorite Charity Right from Your IRA (New SECURE Act Opportunity) Even though the SECURE Act changed the age at which your RMDs must start from 70½ to 72, you still have the right to make Qualified Charitable Distributions directly from your IRA to a qualifying charity once Investment advisory and financial planning services offered through Advisory Alpha, LLC a Registered Investment Advisor. Insurance, Consulting and Education services offered through Two Waters Wealth Management, LLC. Two Waters Wealth Management is a separate and unaffiliated entity from Advisory Alpha. Advisory Alpha does not provide tax or legal advice. Please consult with your tax professional prior to making decisions relative to these issues.

A Pet For You

P.O. Box 9102 Charlotte, N.C.

This organization is a nonprofit, no-kill animal rescue in Charlotte focused on helping to end pet abandonment, abuse and neglect. If you are interested in meeting and/or adopting any of the animals featured below, please visit the organization’s website and fill out an adoption application. These animals are looking for their forever homes . . .


Skye, a Great Pyrenees/Shepherd mix, was initially very shy, unhealthy, listless, and didn’t much want to be around anyone at first. Since she has been with the rescue, she has learned to trust people again and she has been socialized by her foster mom to new situations, sights, and sounds. Skye is 5 years old and weighs 75 pounds. She is spayed, fully vaccinated, and being treated for heart worms. She plays nicely with dogs that understand she’s in charge. Skye needs a home with a very submissive dog, or a home where she’s the only pet. She is not cat friendly. Adoption fee is $195 and includes: spay/neuter, parvo/distemper series of shots, rabies, bordatella, heartworm treatment while here, worming, and microchip.

Simon and Matilda

Simon (red collar) and Matilda (purple collar) are 10-week-old siblings that have never known life without each other. Simon was the runt of the litter, small and shy. He has relied on big sis Matilda to help him navigate foster life and now he has blossomed into a playful ball of kitten joy. Both kittens have good inside manners, are litter box experts, and have learned to use the scratch post instead of the sofa. Both Simon and Matilda have had two of their kitten shots so far, are dewormed, flealess, and in excellent health. Since they are each the other’s ride or die, it is the rescue’s hope is that Simon and Matilda are adopted together. If not, they need to go to homes with another welcoming kitty already in it. Adoption fee is $100 each or $150 for both and includes: spay/neuter, worming, kitten vaccines (while with us) and microchip.


Jessie is a happy and social dog and loves her humans to the moon and back. Sometimes she gets a little jealous, so this princess prefers to be the only dog in your castle. She is fine playing with other dogs but really wants her own space. She is a great leash walker, listener, car rider, social butterfly, companion, and snoozer. Jessie is a calm and quiet 2-year old Chihuahua mix and weighs 23 pounds. Adoption fee is $225 and includes: spay/neuter, parvo/distemper series of shots, rabies, bordetella, heartworm preventative while here, worming, and microchip.


Henry is small for a Husky, weighing in around 60 pounds and is 2-3 years old. He is heartworm negative and on prevention, neutered and has all vaccines. Henry doesn’t bark much and isn’t a crazy escape artist and once he trusts you. He’s very loving rather than aloof. He’s very playful and dog friendly, but he needs an experienced dog owner. It took him several weeks to adjust to his new situation and he was untrusting and apprehensive initially. He also didn’t eat well for the first three weeks and there wasn’t a physical reason, so it was just because of having to adjust to his new situation. He also doesn’t like his feet handled. He would be best in a home without young children, so there is time to work with him and give him a patient new beginning. Having another dog and a fenced in yard would also be beneficial. Adoption fee is $195 and includes: spay/neuter, parvo/distemper series of shots, rabies (if dog is old enough), bordetella, heartworm preventative while here, worming, and microchip. | JANUARY 2021



y f i s r e v Di

How do we

our home libraries?

by Renee Roberson

There is a concept discussed in educational circles called “Mirrors and Windows.” Put simply, a mirror is a story that reflects your own culture and helps you build your identity. A window is a resource that offers you a view into someone else’s experience. It is critical to understand that students cannot truly learn about themselves unless they learn about others as well. On Jan. 19, Dr. Tehia Starker Glass, Associate Professor of Educational Psychology and Elementary Education at UNCCharlotte, will lead a parent advisory discussion to parents at the Community School of Davidson (via Zoom) on the topic of diversifying our home libraries. As an educator and as a parent, Dr. Glass recognized early on that she wanted to seek out literature that her own young sons (who are Black) could see themselves represented in. During her research, she realized the majority of children’s literature features characters that are predominately white or are represented as animals. Over the past several years, she’s been working with the teachers at CSD to help them build more inclusive classroom libraries. “We’ve been socialized to be our own mirrors,” she explains. “We hang out with people who look like us, live in neighborhoods where everyone looks like us. But I kept running into children and adults who didn’t realize there was a whole other world out there.” As we talked, I took a mental inventory of some of the books my own kids had read or purchased over the years. Although my mother’s side of the family is Hispanic, we never had any picture or middle grade books that featured this culture. As a parent, this would fall on me to seek out, and I never had. In the past, I’ve relied on the published lists of “classics” for recommendations of what my kids should be reading. But 72


some of those lists are outdated, and while they do contain important books, amendments can and probably should be made in order to give the reader a broader perspective of the time period and social issues represented in the books. For example, the website offers suggestions on companion reads to the book “To Kill a Mockingbird.” One example is “We Wear the Mask,” which features a poem by the African American poet Paul Laurence Dunbar, the son of freed slaves. The website even offers suggestions on when to introduce Dunbar’s text in response to a specific chapter in “To Kill a Mockingbird.” Parents (such as myself) can work to slowly build their home libraries by finding books that represent different perspectives on race, gender, language, citizenship, etc. Dr. Glass also recommended that as we celebrate the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. this month, it’s important to introduce a variety of his writing. He had much more to say than the “I Have a Dream” speech that is frequently quoted, and some of his words depicted his frustrated response to the social injustices he fought against in the Civil Rights Movement. As parents, we can introduce his “Letter from Birmingham Jail” letter to our children, or, for younger readers, the picture book “Let the Children March” by Monica Clark-Robinson. I came away from our discussion with a whole new stack of books to put on my reading wish list, and the knowledge that it is never too late to explore the history and perspectives of others through literature. To learn more about Dr. Tehia Starker Glass, visit | JANUARY 2021


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