Lake Norman CURRENTS Magazine February 2023

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LAKE NORMAN FEBRUARY 2023 - New Feature: ‘Bliss’full Balance: What Makes Your Town Special? Discover Yours in Denver Limitless Celebrating what LKN has to offer our 55+ readers Medical Profiles Special Section: Weekend Getaway: The Waterman Fish Bar in Cornelius Winterplace, West Virginia A Taste of the Shore
LAKE NORMAN CURRENTS | FEBRUARY 2023 6 Windows and doors that reflect your lifestyle 1141 Hawthorne Ln. Charlotte, NC 28205 | 704.344.1875 | Mike@WindowAndDoorPros.Com

Fitness is Moving!

We’re well informed of the benefits of routine exercise. Running, weight training, swimming and team sports are only a few proven means to attain and maintain good health. “Just move!” they say. “Just move!” Well, it’s been a while since I’ve moved with a notable burst of oomph, and it shows. I’m twice the man I was 35 years ago but not in a good way. I have no excuses. There was a time, however, when I routinely ran 30 to 40 miles per week, and I could bench press twice my body weight. If I weren’t running, I’d break out my bike for a 30-mile spin. I was in shape, man, and abundantly proud of my robust physique.

During that time, a co-worker, Celina, gave me coupons worth three free aerobic classes at a local fitness center where she was a member. “Sure,” I said. “This will be a cakewalk.”

We arrived at Forever Fit on a Wednesday evening. The woman at the front desk (middle-age, remarkably youthful) checked me in and recommended that I start with the beginner’s class. I scoffed indignantly at her suggestion and insisted that I was surely buff enough to join Celina in the intermediate session. “Big mistake,” warned Celina. “I wouldn’t do that if I were you.”

The cardio wasn’t a problem. I went through the routine full force, keeping pace with Celina, but the unfamiliar exercises and strain on my previously unused muscles left me tingling by sessions end. “What a burn,” I declared. I had demonstrated to Celina and that class the awe-inspiring stamina of the true athlete I was. Arriving home, feeling thoroughly exhilarated, I showered, had a bite to eat then called it a night, thinking I might try the high-impact class for my next go-around. Foolish me.

The next day, climbing out of bed was excruciating; dressing myself was near impossible. It took me several moments of agonizing contortions just to get situated behind the steering wheel, where I prayed for divine intervention, anything to quell the pain. When I arrived at work, I limped miserably to the back of the elevator and moaned quietly. I shuffled to my desk like a 20-year-old arthritic dog while suffering the most painful muscle breakdown I’d ever known. Reaching for my keyboard was tortuous. My voice indicated trauma every time I spoke on the phone. “Are you okay?” asked the callers. “You sound like you’re in pain.” If they only knew.

Celina stopped by my cubicle around lunchtime. She laughed at me as I grimaced pathetically. The pain had forced me to fold myself into a left-leaning fetal position within my ergonomically designed chair. “Wimp,” she said heading off toward the break room. And heck no, I didn’t redeem my two remaining aerobic sessions; furthermore, it was at least a week before I eased into my pre-trauma fitness regimen.

Currents February issue is our Health and Wellness issue. I’m not qualified to tell people how to take care of themselves, but I’ll suggest finding — maybe within these pages — a physical activity or motivator that inspires you to move. My 2023 resolution is to move, but not too fast.

Currents is now accepting 2023 Best of Lake Norman Nominations

Attention Currents readers! The Best of Lake Norman competition is underway, and it’s not too early to cast your votes. Nominate your favorite Lake Norman business, health club, performance venue, dining spot and more. Say thank you to those who add contentment and delight to your Lake Norman lives. Winners will be announced in our August issue.

Nominations can be submitted at

MacAdam Smith

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Co-Editor Tony
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Since 1930. Trusted for Generations. | FEBRUARY 2023 9

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.

Contents CHANNEL MARKERS Movers, shakers and more at the lake 18 Bet Ya Didn’t Know Huntersville Plans a Birthday Party 20 BOTL Winner Spotlight – Carolina Age Management Institute 22 Why We Love … Readers Tell Us What Makes Their Town Special 24 Live Like A Native Our Town Cinemas In Davidson 26 Weekend Getaway Get Your Snow on at Winterplace FEATURES In Every Issue 30 Game On The Benefits of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu 32 Live Your Best Life Tips for a Heart-Healthy Lifestyle DINE + WINE Eating, drinking, cooking and fun 60 Wine Time Yadkin Valley’s Wine Philosopher 62 Tasty Bits A Winter Soup to Warm the Soul 64 Nibbles + Bites The Waterman Fish Bar in Cornelius 68 On Tap Discover Your Bliss in Denver LAKE SPACES How we live at the lake 35 Family Gathering Spaces Get a Remodel … It Was Just a Matter of Trust SPECIAL SECTION Meet Our Advertisers 41 Medical Specialty Profiles About the Cover: If you’re craving that taste of the shore, try out The Waterman Fish Bar in Cornelius to satisfy that urge. Photography by Shrimp & Grisettes 35 48 LIMITLESS A section for LKN residents 55+ 48 A Moment in Time For February, I Wish You Love 52 Limitless Learning Reviewing Your Estate Plan 54 Limitless Learning First Party Special Needs Trusts
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.
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18 33 LAKE NORMAN CURRENTS | FEBRUARY 2023 12 | FEBRUARY 2023 13 AUTO | BUSINESS | FARM | HOME | LIFE | RETIREMENT 888-230-0030 | | Leyda Martinez 7505 NC-73 F, Denver, NC 28037 (704) 768-2002 Leon Brown, III 139 East Broad Street, Statesville, NC 28677 (704) 871-8002
Mullen 2740 E Hwy 27, Lincolnton NC 28092 (704) 735-6974
Holdenrid, VP 124 South Main St Mount Holly, NC 28120 (704) 827-3151
Kaufman 107 Kilson Dr. #107, Mooresville 28117 (704) 664-9111
Griffin, CEO 107 Kilson Dr. #107, Mooresville 28117 (704) 664-9111
Long 139 East Broad Street, Statesville, NC 28677 (704) 871-8002
Armstrong 107 Kilson Dr. #107, Mooresville 28117 (704) 664-9111
Hampton 107 Kilson Dr. #107, Mooresville 28117 (704) 664-9111
Renegar 139 East Broad Street, Statesville, NC 28677 (704) 871-8002 Thank You for Trusting Us to Protect You and Your Loved Ones Every Day of the Year Protect Your Family and Assets With a Comprehensive Plan Of Insurance Coverage HAPPY

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Movers, Shakers, Style, Shopping, Trends, Happenings and More at Lake Norman Owner Curtis Fain and Assistant Manager Big John ready for opening at Our Town Cinemas in Davidson | FEBRUARY 2023 17
Photography by Lisa Crates

A BIG Birthday Party in the Works

Hoyt Wilhelm, the renowned knuckleballer and the first relief pitcher to be elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame was born in Huntersville on July 26, 1922; he’d be closing in on turning 101. Back then, the Huntersville landscape consisted mainly of farms and textile mills — Lake Norman didn’t exist. The son of tenant farmers, Hoyt Wilhelm learned how to throw a baseball in Huntersville and, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, the town’s population was less than 900 at that time. This year, the city – incorporated in 1873 — is celebrating its 150th anniversary. If Mr. Wilhelm were alive today, for sure he’d have a story or two to share about the old days, and he’d be amazed by the decades of change and prosperity that have come about. Today, Huntersville has much to appreciate: new businesses, economic growth, public attractions and a rich history. This year, the city will offer ongoing events to commemorate its sesquicentennial anniversary.

Happy Anniversary Huntersville - February 25, 2023

A party is scheduled at the Huntersville Recreation Center from 2 to 4 p.m. Wear your party hat and come celebrate. Face painting,

music, a balloon drop, special cakes and a photo booth are some of the planned activities. All generations are encouraged to attend.

Festival in the Fall - September 23, 2023

Bands, bull riding, bounce houses, vendors, fireworks, archery tag and more will highlight this Fall Celebration at the Huntersville Recreation Center and Athletic Park.

Time Capsule Installation - December 2, 2023

A special time capsule to represent what people love about Huntersville will be installed at Veterans Park during the Huntersville Christmas celebration. Those interested in donating to the time capsule can find more information at

For information on celebratory events and programs, visit

CHANNEL MARKERS - bet ya didn’t know
Downtown Huntersville compiled by Tony Ricciardelli photography courtesy of Train Tracks Pass Through Downtown Huntersville Girl and Guy Outside Post Office
LAKE NORMAN CURRENTS | FEBRUARY 2023 18 | FEBRUARY 2023 19 CELEBRATE FEBRUARY WITH SHADES OF PURPLE AND RED. Cupid strikes again! TRENDS + STYLE 1. Lavender Chamomile Candle Nectar Republic - $40 2. Fluere Gemstone Earrings, Mickey Lynn $148 3. Ruby/Sapphire Tournaline Bracelet, Mickey Lynn $ 148 4. Ezra Table Lamp Kinzig Design - $970 5. Raspberry Cream Sculptural Glass, Elijah Kell - $700 6. Remnants, Oil on Canvas, 30 x 48, By Claire Jacobs $2100  7. Champagne Pearl Necklace Mickey Lynn - $158 8. Calla Necklace, Fluorite Gemstones, Mickey Lynn $128 All of these items can be purchased at: Historic Downtown Mooresville 112 S Main St. | 704.728.9880 Facebook and Instagram @juelerye [7] [6] [8] [4] [2] [1] [5] [3]

Carolina Age Management Institute

Offering a wide variety of advanced cosmetic procedures with a very patient-centric approach to care, Carolina Age Management Institute (CAMI) was chosen as the winner of our “Best MedSpa” and “Best Place to Pamper Yourself” categories for 2022.

Medical Director Dr. Stephen Giordano — or “Dr. G” as his patients affectionately refer to him — established CAMI in Huntersville in 2014 to provide everything from facials to more advanced cosmetic treatments using the most minimally invasive procedures as possible. Not only is he board certified in internal medicine, he also holds the title of DO, or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine. Giordano describes it as an added specialty in the manipulation of veins, arteries and lymphatic tissue, which gives him the ability to offer a more holistic approach to the cosmetic treatments his patients seek.

Regardless, whether it’s body sculpting, dermal fillers and injectables, hair loss treatment or permanent makeup application, CAMI’s approach to customer service is what Giordano believes sets his practice apart from the rest.

“We take an old-fashioned, well-rounded approach to customer service,” he says. Even after the simplest procedures, CAMI providers and staff stay in touch with each client to ensure they receive appropriate follow-up care regardless of the time of day or day of the week. “We’ll even make house calls if necessary, and many of our clients have my personal phone number.”

It’s a personal approach that Giordano insists upon, especially as his practice has grown within the last year to include locations in Lincolnton and Greensboro. He says while the majority of his patients are women in their mid-40s to mid-50s, male patients are the fastest growing demographic at his practice as men are becoming more interested in how cosmetic procedures can benefit them as well.

Learn more about Carolina Age Management Institute at or call them at 704.997.6530.

Editor’s Note: Each month we will feature one of the 2022 Best of the Lake Norman CURRENTS Award Winners and share a little more behind-the-scenes info with our readers! Top: Dr. Stephen Giordano offers a holistic approach to his patients seeking advanced cosmetic procedures. Middle and bottom: CAMI’s Huntersville location is one of three now, joined recently by practices in Lincolnton and Greensboro.

We are now accepting nominations in more than 30 categories for The Best of Lake Norman. From pizza to pet services, we have a wide variety of business categories to suit your specialty.

Here’s how to nominate your own business or the business you believe is the Best of Lake Norman:

• Go to our contest website at

• Type in the business name you believe should be nominated as the BEST in their category.

That’s it! We’ll compile all of the nominations and select the top five nominees based on the number of nominations in their category.

Voting will then begin on April 1! Be sure to encourage your friends, co-workers, family members and of course your customers to go to our voting site and cast their vote for your business as the Best of Lake Norman! Voting will end June 30, so you have plenty of time to get as many votes in for your business as possible! Winners will be revealed at a special ceremony to be announced soon. Winners will also be showcased in our August issue and will receive a Best of Lake Norman “CURRENT” Trophy along with an award certificate to hang prominently in your business! All nominations must be submitted by March 30 So, what are you waiting for? Do it now! | FEBRUARY 2023 21
one vote per I.P.
Magazine and
vote. WE NEED YOUR nominations Will Your Business be Named CURRENTS’ 2023 Best of Lake Norman? The 37 th Davidson Horticultural Symposium Join us as we find inspiration from the past and discover new ways to create gardens that are imaginative, fresh and support the natural world. Tuesday,
The Dimensions of a Garden: An Exploration of Style and Purpose
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March 7, 2023

Why We Love


Being from a small beach town in New Jersey, what drew us to Cornelius was the fact that the lake and the city are only minutes apart. As a family, we enjoy the new and upcoming restaurants and businesses in our area. We enjoy the small town feel and the Southern people. We have lived here for 16 years and don’t plan on going anywhere else. We have never felt more welcomed in a town like Cornelius. The education here is exceptional and is only expanding. We have met so many people from different walks of life, which has taught our children diversity. Lake Norman is a beautiful place to be, especially in the summertime. In the warmer months in downtown Cornelius, they have a “First Friday” event full of food trucks, vendors and entertainment that is fun for all ages. Cornelius is now home to a new cultural arts center that will be amazing for everyone. There is also a new public recreation center in Cornelius that has offers swimming pools, gymnasiums and playgrounds, if you need to get some movement in. There is plenty to do in Cornelius from breweries to parks — you name it. It is a perfect distance from the mountains and Charlotte. You can spend the day seeing the beautiful fall leaves and mountain views to being back to see the night life in the city. There is always something to do living in Cornelius. Moving here was one of the best decisions we have ever made.


I should first say my husband and I are transplants to North Carolina. He is from Illinois, and I am from New Jersey, and we met here in North Carolina. We have raised our children here and this is the place we call home.

We love living in Huntersville for many reasons — first off, it is a melting pot of people moving here from all over the U.S. and we have a great opportunity to meet many incredible new people every day and hear about so many new stories. Beyond the excitement of new friends, there are so many benefits to living here. Even though the area has grown so much over recent years, it still provides a great small town feel with many of the conveniences of a larger metropolitan area. There are so many great shopping, dining and entertainment options at our fingertips; Birkdale Village is a fun and popular destination for many locals and visitors, too. The great outdoors is right here with access to the largest man-made lake in the state, and there are miles of trails for hiking and biking. Golf is fantastic in the area with Birkdale Golf Club, Skybrook Golf Club and Northstone Country Club all located in Huntersville.

We believe the proximity to so many other nearby destinations is hugely appealing. The fact that Charlotte is 20 minutes away just adds so many options, not to mention we’re also only a few hours to the mountains or the ocean.

Finally, we love the climate. The summers are warm and beautiful, the spring and fall are the best weather seasons and the winters are cool but mild. The best part is we do not receive a lot of snow in Huntersville like we did up north, but if we want that, we can run up to the mountains.

We love Huntersville. We have lived here for 24 years, raised our family here and are happy to call it home.

From left, Marianne, Connor, Kayla and Jeff Thomas enjoying some zipline time.
The Boesch family (left to right): Brandan Boesch, Sammy, Michelle Boesch, Jeff Boesch, Sadie and Taylor Boesch


In the early and mid-1970s, so many people were leaving the Charlotte area for the chance to live on the newly formed Lake Norman, and my family was one of them. We started coming to Denver in the mid-1960s soon after Lake Norman was created. We had a lake lot where we camped, and my parents eventually built a house and moved here when my father retired in 1973.

After Bill and I married we would spend weekends at my parents’ house in Denver because of all the lake offered. I was from Charlotte and Bill grew up in a small town near Charlotte. Bill worked for Duke Power, and when he got the chance to be transferred to McGuire Nuclear Station, we grabbed it and we moved to Denver. He had wanted to get back to small town living. This made Denver perfect! We moved here in 1977.

Our son, David, was born in 1983. At that time, Denver had only elementary, one middle and one high school. So, he went to school with the same people during his entire education. Our friends’ children are David’s brothers and sisters. He formed lifelong friendships here. Denver will always be his hometown.

Now Denver is filled with people, restaurants, stores, businesses and traffic. And it just keeps growing. We used to complain that we had to drive to Charlotte for everything. Now we complain that the traffic is so bad because we have all those things here.

We weren’t born here, but this is our home. We are rooted here. We have watched Denver grow from a sparsely populated two-lane highway — no stoplights, just a crossroads “in beautiful downtown Denver” with a flashing red caution light at Stacy’s restaurant (a Denver staple). We have grown and changed as Denver has grown and changed. Denver is home. Denver is family.

Tell us what you love ...

There are so many things to love about our Lake Norman area towns and all of our local attractions, so we’d love to hear about what you love — directly from you!

Whether it’s your love for a town you now call home, or a favorite park that you enjoy, or a fun party place to swing from an anchor on the lake, we want to hear about it all. Send us a love letter to your favorite town, getaway, distraction, whatever has captured your heart and attention, and we’ll share it with our readers. Submissions should be about 250 words and should be accompanied by a photo to help tell the story of your romance.

Send everything to, and we’ll run them in the order received. Can’t wait to see what you’ve got! | FEBRUARY 2023 23

Davidson’s Movie Theater: No Need for Twenty Screens

Our Town Cinemas Offers More Than Popcorn and Junior Mints

At the age of 16, Curtis Fainn’s very first job was tearing tickets at the door of a one-screen movie theater in Alabama. Luckily for Davidson and the Lake Norman area, that wasn’t his last job in the motion picture industry. For the next 40 years, Fainn, Managing Partner of Our Town Cinemas, learned every aspect of the business by working in theaters, with roles ranging from doorman to usher to projectionist to manager and, later, in film distribution, culminating in the realization of his dream — owning an independent theater.

“Our Town,” a name chosen to reflect its place in the local community, strives to offer a welcoming, hometown atmosphere. To that end, employees (16-20 at any time) are taught the art of customer service. “Guests should be greeted by friendly people who want to serve them,” says Fainn. And they are.

“It’s small, friendly, clean and close to home,” says a Davidson couple getting their popcorn and soda for an afternoon movie. “We’re huge movie buffs, and we’ve been coming here since it opened.” They like “Big John,” who takes care of them at the concession stand, too.

Located in Sadler Square, a small shopping center on Davidson’s Griffith Street, the space isn’t typical, but worked ideally with a prototype Fainn had been developing in semi-retirement. At the heart of the complex, 9,750 square feet of retail space sat empty, including a closed discount drug store and an out-of-business pizza parlor. Driving by with a friend one day, Fainn took note.

“I think that could work,” he said. As it so happened, that very friend knew the owner of the property. A meeting was arranged, a deal was

CHANNEL MARKERS - live like a native

struck and a long-time vision came to life. Construction started in mid-August 2009 and Our Town Cinemas, with four screens and each theater furnished with comfortable, adjustable seats and bistro tables, opened on Christmas Day that same year.

Since then, Fainn meets with his staff every Monday to handpick upcoming movies, which he says he loves. Of course, not every film is exactly to his personal taste — his all-time favorite is the classic “Gone with the Wind” — but they try to consider an “audience from nine to 90,” along with the business aspect of it, he says. That means something charming for the kids and a balance of mainstream, blockbuster and indie films to round it out.

About eight years ago, Our Town added “Cafe & Taphouse” to its name, reflecting the trend of theaters offering more food and drink choices. On tap, you can choose from 16 rotating selections of hard ciders and beers such as pale ales, red ales, pilsner, stout, porter and more. How about a Lost Worlds Emmer Cherry Wheat, or a Red Oak lager, Big John’s favorite? There’s also a wine menu with a dozen choices. On the food side, in addition to Junior Mints and popcorn for the traditionalists, the cafe offers pizza, burgers, wraps and quesadillas, as well as kid favorites like cheesy nachos and chicken tenders. For busy folks, “this is becoming the new dinner and a movie,” says Fainn.

When COVID came along, Our Town closed in March 2020, as did all theaters, and reopened on Thanksgiving Day 2021. It would be several more months before things got back to normal. At one point, the cafe had 50 pounds of popcorn — enough for a couple of slower weeks — but no containers to put it in, thanks to supply chain problems. Through it all, “no full-time employee missed a paycheck,” Fainn says, “thanks to Federal PPI Grants, the Shuttered Venues Operators Grant (SVOG) and the North Carolina MURR Grant.”

Memorial Day weekend of 2022 was a turning point. The blockbuster hit “Top Gun: Maverick” was released, and folks showed up to see it. “That was a 200 pounds of popcorn weekend,” says Fainn, “and we’ve been going full force, full time ever since.”

For more information about Our Town Cinemas, visit, or call 704.237.3226.

Lights dim before the next showing
325 McGill Ave. NW Concord, NC 28026 704-787-9351 Mon-Sat 10-7• Sunday 1-6 Come visit the largest antique mall in the South 88,000 Square Feet • Over 625 Booths Comfortably air conditioned Where the OLD is the new NEW Ellie’s Diner NOW OPEN 88,000 Square Feet • Over 725 Booths Comfortably air conditioned The Depot Diner on Site! AT THE DEPOT! Something for every Sweet -h eart | FEBRUARY 2023 25

Having the Mid-Winter ‘Blahs’?

Winterplace Ski Resort Provides a Lift

The variety of terrain at Winterplace Ski Resort offers not just miles of skiing and snowboarding slopes, but the best snowtubing park in the South.

Let’s face it. With all the Lake Norman region has to offer, there are just sometimes when you’ve got to get away for a little change of scenery.

A run south to Charleston or Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, is always an option. It’s not a terrible drive and both places offer a lot to do and see. But mid-winter is not necessarily beach weather, and wandering through Charleston’s Battery Park along the harbor or strolling the more than mile-long boardwalk and promenade at Myrtle in the February wind doesn’t exactly entice one to want to pack up the family truckster and go.

The leaf-peeping options in the western North Carolina mountains are a distant memory by now, and rolling the dice on whether the unpredictable local wintertime weather would yield the opportunity for a decent day on the lake is a bet most bookies wouldn’t take.

There is, however, a great option if you turn your sights to the north. A straight shot up I-77 for about three hours, and you can be at Winterplace Ski Resort in Ghent, West Virginia — known as the top-rated resort in the South for beginning skiers. It’s a tourism badge of honor that Winterplace General Manager Josh Faber wears with particular pride. | FEBRUARY 2023 27

“We’ve got a killer mountain here,” Faber says about its location on Flat Top Mountain at 3,600 feet elevation. “It’s 600 vertical feet and we’ve got a perfect mixed bag (of terrains). For our beginners, we’ve probably got one of the better beginning terrains that I’ve ever seen… and I’ve skied all over the world,” he says.

With only about 14 percent of its terrain committed to the advanced schusser, the remainder of the nearly 30 runs are split between slopes catering to novice or outright beginner skiers and snowboarders. Faber says he sees Winterplace’s part in the ski industry’s “food chain” of developing competent skiers as the perfect first step in that progression.

“We get a lot of first timers coming out of the South, which is really cool,” says Faber. “Let’s be real … for a lot of our guests, this is the first time they’ve seen snow.”

In only his second year as general manager, Faber says it’s his team’s mission to provide a very family-focused experience for their guests. He says they’ve completely remodeled the entire equipment rental process to make it more negotiable for families experiencing their first ski trip together, and anyone who has ever tried to get more than themselves ready for a day on the mountain can attest to just what a challenge that can be.

Faber is sympathetic to that plight — he’s the father of three young girls who are all great skiers in their own right, but he says even when the kids know “the drill” and the fact that all their equipment is right there in his office, it’s never a simple evolution. But he wouldn’t trade it for the world and enjoying the mountain with one’s kids is an experience he hopes to provide for other families.

“It’s the most rewarding thing I do, and it’s what I want others to experience and enjoy,” Faber says. And there’s the added bonus that those who learn to ski when they’re young will likely end up staying on skis well into adulthood.

“It’s a sport you can do your entire life,” he says. “I’ve seen older gentlemen that ski better than they walk. I hope to be one of those guys someday.”

Winterplace’s season runs typically from mid-December to midMarch, thanks to its extensive snowmaking capacity. Faber says the mountain’s elevation and naturally low humidity climate definitely help that process, along with its impressive ability to pump about 7,200 gallons of water per minute through its dozens of snowmaking guns covering all 90 acres of terrain. That includes the longest snowtubing park in the state with more than a dozen tubing lanes.

The resort is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year — a celebration they enjoy having survived a global pandemic from which many businesses, particularly those in the hospitality and tourism industry, never recovered.

“The only good thing that came of COVID was the outdoor industry as a whole exploded,” says Farber. “It got people outside, because families were looking for something to do to get out of the house … It actually brought a lot of people back out to the slopes. We saw a lot of people that hadn’t skied in many years that got back out, dusted the skis off. COVID was actually kind of a positive for the ski industry in that sense,” he says.

As far as accommodations for your trek north, The Resort at Glade Springs is just a few miles from the mountain in Daniels and offers a wide variety of room options and dining experiences. If skiing isn’t in the cards, all manner of recreational activities is available for resort guests, ranging from swimming to bowling to escape rooms to laser tag to basketball to golf to … well, you get it. You won’t be bored.

Faber says there is no official relationship between Winterplace and The Resort at Glade Springs, but there’s no denying the convenience of the two being so close to each other.

“It makes a nice little package for our guests who stay there,” he says. “They’re just a good neighbor down the street.”

Check out what’s just up the “street” from Lake Norman at Winterplace Ski Resort by visiting and The Resort at Glade Springs at
A unique dining experience that offers new dishes paired with craft beer in a comfortable and relaxed atmosphere. 600 S OAKWOOD AVE, BECKLEY, WV 25801 304.253.9872 After-hours family entertainment Just 8 miles from Winterplace Free ski shuttle Four restaurants Full service spa 255 Resort Drive Daniels, WV 25832 877-700-8918 Start your ski adventure at Glade Springs Family friendly activities: bowling, indoor pool, indoor basketball, escape rooms, laser tag, pickleball, fitness center, hot tub, sauna & steam rooms, daily movies, and more! Visit Our Winter Wonderland 9239 Valley Blvd. | Blowing Rock, NC 28605 828.414.9230 | Divide Tavern Listed on the National Historic Register Grand Dame of the High Country ... ...Where Blowing Rock Began ... Classic Surroundings – Modern Amenities Open Thursday 5-10 Friday & Saturday 12-10 304-320-6674 Ski Winterplace, Where it’s all downhill from there! •

Building a Well-Rounded Self

Gracie Lake Norman Jiu-Jitsu: Martial Arts and Life Skills

A healthy body contributes to a healthy mind and vice versa. Striving for individual achievement and self-improvement — physical and mental — often leads to a better understanding of individual potential, capability and a positive view of who we are along with an awareness of how we interact with the world around us.

Studying martial arts is but one way to improve overall wellness, while gaining an affirmative life-perspective. In Mooresville, Gracie

Lake Norman Jiu-Jitsu (GLKN) prepares students for lifelong success by enabling them to realize their full potential.

Owned by husband-and-wife team Leigh Ann and Ranard Brown, the business has been in Mooresville since 2010. While Leigh Ann serves as the Director, Ranard is the lead instructor. A 2nd degree Black Belt and a student of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu since 2001, he holds multiple local, regional and international black belt championship

Tony Ricciardelli photographs provided by Gracie Lake Norman Jiu-Jitsu
Leigh Ann and Ranard Brown demonstrate their jiu-jitsu skills Below: Coach Paul (left) wins the Absolute Division competition

titles. Two of his students have made it to the Ultimate Fighting Championship world stage, and 12 youth ages seven to 15 have earned multiple championships.

While some are drawn to the martial arts as a means of self-defense and physical improvement, there’s much more to it. Mental fortitude and embracing the tenets of martial arts is essential to meeting one’s goals in competition and in everyday life.

“Teaching and learning jiu-jitsu without understanding the philosophy behind it is dangerous and irresponsible,” says Ranard. “Martial arts build discipline, control, respect, restraint and patience. Otherwise, the tools are just violence. The philosophy of martial arts — gentleness, mutual welfare and benefit, the best use of physical and mental energy — is indispensable to its training.”

The process is straightforward, and students are expected to make their best effort, to push themselves beyond their doubts and insecurities. Eye contact and communication is essential.

“At a certain level, every student is required to teach, to demonstrate leadership, to be a role model to fellow students,” he says. “The kids and the adults evaluate their own progress in terms of physical abilities and emotional control. We have all our students partake in ‘teachbacks,’ which require them to teach me a particular move. Our students are accountable for their progress; that rule is non-negotiable.”

Gracie Lake Norman Jiu-Jitsu offers a variety of programs for children and adults. Students as young as four years old can be seen on the mats. There is also a youth empowerment program that instills youth with courage and confidence. Adult programs include jiu-jitsu, self defense and “Women’s Wine and Self Defense,” a free program designed to give women self-protection skills and a reprieve from the

challenges of negative family dynamics. Private training is also available. The staff includes several martial arts experts holding black belt degrees. Jiu-jitsu masters also visit classes to inspire and to teach.

“We’re more than a business,” says Ranard. “We emphasize health and well-being for our students and their families.” For example, some parents enroll their children as a means of improving their child’s behavior. Partnering with parents to sustain a child’s positive, functional attitude extends beyond jiu-jitsu classes and into home life, school and in everyday situations.

The results are evident. Parents are thankful when a child’s disrespect, aggression and negative mindset are mitigated if not eradicated. Kristen Oden has two boys attending GLKN, ages five and seven. “My five-year-old was shy, clingy and lacking confidence,” says Oden. “Now his personality is flourishing. Others have noticed big changes in his self-esteem. My older son has learned respect and his ability to focus has improved.”

Positive outcomes are achieved by the adults as well. Regular training and learning how to live a healthy lifestyle often lead to weight loss, confidence and improved mobility. Many students are employed by regional law enforcement, and they work hard to reduce stress and maintain the physical strength and mental grit required of their profession. Jiu-jitsu prepares students to thrive and succeed in whatever vocation or life situation they choose or encounter.

Ranard hosts a bi-weekly podcast in which he encourages thought-provoking conversations on a variety of topics, including self-transformation and business-related issues.

For more information about Gracie Lake Norman Jiu-Jitsu, visit or call 704.479.1255.

Youth class wins Gold Medal competitions Gracie Lake Norman adult class Ranard Brown wins International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation Gold Medal Adult Class warms up before training | FEBRUARY 2023 31

6 Tips for Achieving a Heart-Healthy Lifestyle

February is heart awareness month, and it’s a good reminder to keep our momentum for healthy living in the new year.

Heart disease remains the leading cause of death in the United States. The good news is we can significantly change our cardiometabolic risk by adapting the following healthy lifestyle choices.

1. Nutrition. To reduce cardiometabolic risk, a diet that is rich in antioxidants will help decrease inflammation, manage blood sugar levels and decrease oxidation. Sounds like a tall order, but it’s not as difficult as it sounds. While eating, make sure half the plate contains fruits and vegetables and, additionally, the daily diet includes plenty of nuts (unsalted), fiber (beans/ peas), omega-3 which is found in fish, edamame/soybeans, seaweed or flax and chia seeds. Reduce consumption of red meat, refined carbohydrates (white flour, pasta, pastries) and simple sugars (soda, fruit juice).

2. Movement & Exercise. Exercise has great benefits. In addition to cardiometabolic improvements, exercise also improves brain health and weight loss, while decreasing cancer risks and improving hormones. Daily exercise is more likely to occur if it is scheduled. Strive for at moderately intense activity at least 150 - 300 minutes per week (e.g., brisk walking, light bicycling, vacuuming, mopping, mowing the lawn), or 75 - 150 minutes of vigorous activity per week (e.g., jogging, hiking, shoveling, bicycling). Stack exercises with 10–15-minute intervals, 2-3 times throughout the day.

Since sedentary behavior lends to higher risk, avoid sitting for prolonged periods. Use an Apple Watch or Fitbit as a reminder to move hourly, or consider a standing desk

3. Stress management & Mindfulness. Stress can kill. It increases blood pressure, causes arrhythmias and heart attacks, increases fat deposition, and increases insulin resistance. Mindfulness will help improve your heart rate variability, lower cortisol levels, help improve brain focus, decrease anxiety and depression and help cope with life’s curveballs. There are many ways to incorporate mindfulness into a daily routine: meditation, breathing techniques, yoga, and taking nature walks are but a few. Stick to the most beneficial routine.

4. Lose weight. Achieving and maintaining weight loss is a lifelong journey. If additional assistance is required, use an app that counts calories such as Lose It! or My Fitness Pal. Burning 3,500 calories equals one pound of weight loss, which can be realized with exercise, eating less or a combination of both. If counting calories is unnecessary, use a smaller plate for meals to reduce portion size, and remove junk foods or personally addictive foods from the pantry. Limit unhealthy snacks to individual portion sizes or indulge in them only when eating out.

5. Quit smoking. Discuss smoking cessation options with your doctor.

6. Limit alcohol intake. Alcohol is a toxin — enjoyable at times, but still a toxin. Alcohol impairs the brain’s ability to function, raises blood pressure, causes cardiomyopathy (heart enlargement) and arrhythmias, increases cancer risk, causes liver damage and ulcers, worsens depression and anxiety and the list goes on. The potential benefits of alcohol are minimal and will not apply to all individuals. Current recommendations for moderate drinking are determined as no more than two drinks for men and one for women per day.

(704) 859-0462 | 150 Fairview Road, Suite 325, Mooresville 8035 Providence Road, Suite 315, Charlotte Advanced medicine made personal 24/7 physician access | personalized wellness plans | preventative health care Rajal Patel, MD LAKE NORMAN CURRENTS | FEBRUARY 2023 32 YOUR BEST LIFE - COURTESY OF THE EXPERTS AT WELLCOMEMD | FEBRUARY 2023 33 1. Lux Valentine Candles starting at $22 2. White Ceramic Filigree Containers - $89 3. Custom Pillows starting at $149 4. Picture Frames starting at $30 5. Real Touch Floral starting at $7 6. Striped Wingback Chair - $1699 7. Handblown Glass Buffet Lamp - $477 Love is inthe Air! TRENDS + STYLE 178 N. Main Street, Mooresville, NC 704.957.5014 [1] [4] [6] [2] [5] [3] [7] All of these items can be purchased at:
WE WILL SELL YOUR FURNITURE Constantly Changing High Quality New and Consigned Inventory Helpful Staff Ready to Assist with Loading and Unloading Explore Our Spacious Showroom Today! 704-663-0668 | 335 W. Plaza Drive | Mooresville NC 28117 | Room to Roam OpenEveryday LAKE NORMAN CURRENTS | FEBRUARY 2023 34 220 W. Plaza Drive I-77, Exit 36, Hwy. 150 Open 7:30 am - 8:00 pm Weekdays 8:00 am - 4:00 pm Sat. RANDYMARIONCADILLAC.COM Visit Randy Marion Cadillac for all your service, parts and accessory needs 704-235-6502 Cadillac Direct • RANDYMARION.COM Offering unsurpassed Concierge Service and Roadside Assistance Luxury & Performance at the Lake! Visit us online! @inspiredatlkn Stop by. Be Inspired. Art | Jewelry | Gifts | Home (704)-997-5500 21136 Catawba Ave Cornelius, NC 28031

Lake Spaces

How We Live at the Lake

photography by Jon Beyerle | FEBRUARY 2023 35
Family gathering spaces get a new look with this Mooresville remodel.

It’s a


Matter of


Remodel PRoject HuRdle RequiRed a leaP of faitH


Trust. It’s a word that comes up a lot in conversation with homeowner Patti Boug.

Sitting around her dining room table reflecting on a remodeling project that finally wrapped up just a few months ago at her home in Mooresville, she describes the months-long transformation of her kitchen and family gathering spaces while the builder involved with it — Scott Liseno of Omnia Construction Group — sits smiling and quietly nodding in agreement.

He knows what she’s talking about because he was a major player in the remodel. And as an experienced builder, it wasn’t his first rodeo. He understands what a homeowner like Boug goes through in placing that trust in others, who are oftentimes complete strangers.

Trust with her monetary investment, trust in the expertise of others, trust that her wishes will be respected, trust that obligations will be met. Just … trust.

Fortunately for Boug, all those hurdles were cleared, even through the supply chain issues and subsequent delays that have for the last few years dogged the construction and remodeling industry.

Unfortunately, the person Boug placed so much of that trust in — her original interior designer Kathy McLeod, owner of RES Interiors — was not there at the dining room table sitting with her. In the midst of the demo and re-imagining of the kitchen, family room, powder room and workspace of Boug’s 16-yearold home, McLeod’s cancer diagnosis crept into her | FEBRUARY 2023 37
Patti Boug’s 16-year-old home gets a “clean and simple” refresh thanks to an unlikely collaboration.

life like a thief. It robbed her of her energy, her focus, her availability to her clients and ultimately her life. McLeod passed away in May 2022, barely a month into the active stages of the remodel.

Boug had lost more than her interior designer, she had lost a friend as well. The women had known each other for at least a dozen years — they lived in the same neighborhood, their children were friends and McLeod had actually done previous design projects for Boug. That was why it was so natural to bring McLeod in for her latest project.

“I knew she knew my style, and I trusted her,” she says. “That’s why I really liked working with Kathy. I would describe things or show her pictures. I knew other homes that she did in our neighborhood were very different from what I wanted, and she was able to listen to me and bring what I wanted.”

What Boug really wanted was something “very clean, simple and classic” as she describes it, and clearly the vision McLeod brought to the remodel was just that.

But what Boug really needed at that moment was an interior designer, and of course, one she could trust. Enter Kelly Cruz of Kelly Cruz Interiors, based in Davidson.

“I was totally honored that I got the phone call,” she says. “What a hard thing to do ... you’re at the end of a design project and then your designer is gone. It was crunch time, and Patti was heartbroken.”

As is the case in small towns and tight-knit business communities, there aren’t many degrees of separation between folks, and in the case of McLeod and Cruz, this was no exception. Cruz happened to have known McLeod for close to 20 years, dating back to a time when McLeod was a professional in the banking industry and their children babysat each other on occasion. Boug, Liseno and Cruz agree that the pragmatism that made her a success in banking was a definite asset

when it came to McLeod’s design career and the planning involved. It made Cruz’s transition into the project as smooth as it could possibly be.


“Because Kathy was so regimented, there weren’t a lot of decisions that still needed to be made,” says Liseno. She had spent months leading up to the first demo hammer being swung, planning out the changes, ordering everything from barstools to light fixtures, from kitchen cabinetry to an organizational system for the workspace. Her creative instincts and her business background were a perfect mix.

Cruz agrees, adding that it made her primary responsibility of completing Boug’s and McLeod’s vision that much easier. She did have to make some decisions on a few items left undone. There was the color for the refurbished wood flooring to select and the final footprint of the kitchen where one of two islands was removed to finalize. But beyond that, Cruz says the transition couldn’t have been easier.

“I really felt like (Boug and Liseno) were a great calming force,” she says. “She has that Zen, and he is very calm, so it was a great experience to walk into that.”

The stunning results tell the tale of all that planning, coordination and the genuine comradery in the local interior design community.

“Yes, it’s a competitive industry,” says Cruz, especially about the local business climate. “But we can and do work together. It’s a small industry, so it’s better when we just work together. It makes the industry itself stronger.”

And things are always better and stronger when you can trust. Don’t forget about that trust.

The transformation of Boug’s kitchen meant a completely new look, from the color palette to the cabinetry.

Best Existing Home Remodel Construction - $276K-$500K

Best Existing Home Remodel Project Design - $276K-$500K

This Georgian revival has found new life and is now the home for a young family of six. The two-story addition houses a spacious chef’s kitchen and a new primary bedroom suite, with expansive windows for views to play areas and wooded surroundings. The proportions and details of the addition nod to the existing brick structure while also taking on a whimsical quality to activate the side and rear play yards. The muted color scheme blends in with the surroundings and does not overpower the existing red brick and trim detail. The front porch and entry door were restored, keeping the classic front façade intact. The driveway was relocated to free up valuable side and back yard space.

The whole house interior was renovated, preserving the original details (high ceilings, period moldings, doors and knobs, original hardwood floors) while providing a modern open floor plan, including an excavated and dried in basement space, connecting spaces visually while keeping each distinct room defined. The detached carriage house has a modern live-work studio above, with details and windows to match the main house addition.

Original hardwoods were preserved and where necessary, new

flooring was integrated seamlessly with the existing floors. Electrical, plumbing and mechanical systems were completely updated, and the original windows and storms were replaced with updated clad wood windows throughout the house. Existing brick from the original house was re-used whenever possible, allowing for the relocation of windows in the existing home brick façade and for the integration of the new addition with the existing home, thus maintaining the unique exterior brick design and color. Existing doors and hardware from the original house were used whenever possible, and all newer doors incorporated period authentic hardware to maintain the historical character of the home.

Best Existing Home Remodel - $501K-$1M

The homeowners wished to convert this 1,734 square foot 1970s ranch home into a modern farmhouse with a more open layout for their family. Removing some of the interior walls allowed us to open up the space, providing the homeowners with the functionality they were looking for. We were also able to incorporate some of the authentic 1970s architectural features such as reclaimed wood beams, open rafters, mantles and even included 100-year-old pine planks from a nearby mill. The remodeled home boasts stunning architectural design elements, plenty of natural light and a functional open layout that better fits the needs and lifestyle of the homeowners.

2022 Best of the Lake Design Competition Winners
Winner: Holliday Homes, LLC and Nicole Perri Architecture
Two errors were brought to our attention in last month’s listing of the Lake
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Profiles in Medicine

Whether you’re searching for a specialist such as a cardiologist or oral surgeon, or a family physician or eye care center to assist each member of your household in maintaining optimal health, learn more about the Lake Norman area’s premier medical professionals on the following pages. | FEBRUARY 2023 41

Dr. Anthony D. Elkins, who opened his practice in Mooresville in May 2022, brings an added dimension to a traditional family practice as an osteopathic physician (DO). This means that in addition to providing care for his patients of all ages such as physicals, well child checks, chronic disease management and urgent care for illnesses and injuries, he is also certified in osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT).

It’s a treatment used for conditions such as back and neck pain, headaches, asthma and upper respiratory conditions through the gentle manipulation of joints, muscles and connective tissues. Dr. Elkins says it’s an approach that provides his patients with more comprehensive care, often in cases where standard treatments are undesirable or have been ineffective.

“As an osteopathic physician, I put more emphasis on looking at the patient as a whole,” he says. “I take time to get to know my patients so that I can make treatment recommendations that are most meaningful to them.”

In addition to osteopathic care, Dr. Elkins also specializes in musculoskeletal medicine and sports medicine. He cares for a wide

range of athletes, from casual exercisers to competitive athletes at the high school, collegiate and professional levels. He can also perform office procedures such as skin biopsies, mole removal, joint injections and gynecological procedures. Dr. Elkins’ goal is to provide high quality medical care to patients in a relaxed, slow-paced environment, where each patient receives personalized care that aligns with their goals and values.

“I believe in treating the person, not the disease; solving the problem, not just treating the symptoms,” he says. “I spend more time with my patients so I understand where they are coming from and what goals they have for their health. I partner with my patients to help them achieve their health goals.”

Dr. Elkins is on faculty at several medical schools and trains medical students and residents in family medicine, sports medicine and osteopathic medicine — a level of expertise he believes directly benefits his patients.

“I have over 20 years of experience in my field,” he says. “I love my job and am always grateful for the trust patients and families have placed in me over the years.” 980-435-0406

114 Gateway Blvd., Suite B, Mooresville, NC 28117

Iredell Primary Care | Dr. Anthony D. Elkins

Founded in 1985, Carolina Oral & Facial Surgery focuses on dental alveolar surgery, such as tooth extraction and dental implant placement, as well as bone grafting, pathology and dental infection services, and in-office anesthesia and sedation. Dr. Michael Coleman and Dr. Michael Foran stay abreast of the latest in technique and technology, which has proven to be paramount to the practice’s success.

“Our practice is mainly an office-based oral surgery practice. We specialize in surgical procedures consisting of extraction of wisdom teeth and other non-restorable teeth, bone grafting, placement of dental implants, biopsies and management of pathology and surgical intervention of oral and facial infections,” explains Dr. Foran, an Army veteran.“We have extensive training and experience in in-office sedation to provide comfort to our patients.”

Carolina Oral & Facial Surgery is one of the first practices in the area to implement CT-guided implant procedures. Dr. Foran says CT-guided surgery allows bone grafting and dental implant placement to be more precise. “It has become much more common in my practice, and it helps me serve our patients better,” he explains, adding that the practice also has privileges at the local Novant hospitals for more complicated procedures that

require a hospital setting, such as trauma and facial fractures, as well as orthognathic surgery.

Regardless of the complexity of the procedure, the goal of Carolina Oral & Facial Surgery is to always provide the most upto-date oral and maxillofacial surgical care in a warm, professional and caring environment, personalized to meet an individual patient’s dental needs.

“We are not a large corporate practice. We tailor our care to the individual, in a low-volume and caring environment,” adds Dr. Coleman, who is highly trained in all aspects of oral surgery and implant dentistry. “Our support staff is second to none, and we are always available to our patients, even after the office closes.”

These board certified physicians treat each patient as they would want their wives and children to be treated, with respect, courtesy and compassion. “Our ultimate goal is to provide patients with a thorough diagnosis, the most state-of-the art oral surgery and dental implant treatment, modern facilities and equipment in a professional yet personal, caring, and, perhaps most important, safe environment,” explains Dr. Foran. “We all pay close attention to the concerns of our patients for the best possible treatment and outcome.” | FEBRUARY 2023 43 SPECIAL ADVERTSING SECTION PROFILES IN MEDICINE
19910 N. Cove Road Cornelius, NC 28031 704.892.1198
Michael Foran, DMD Michael Coleman, DDS | Carolina Oral & Facial Surgery

Graystone was originally established as Harris, Foster and Lefler, PA in 1969 by Dr. William Harris, Dr. Thomas Foster and Dr. Hampton Lefler. In 1973, a new office was constructed near Catawba Hospital, which they shared with ENT physicians, subsequently becoming known as Graystone Eye, Ear, Nose & Throat.

In 1977, the practice became Graystone Ophthalmology Associates with the joining of Dr. Randal Williams; and, in 1993 Graystone inherited their Lenoir office with the acquisition of Lenoir Eye Care Clinic. During that 16-year span, the founding physicians of Graystone also opened the original Lincolnton office.

Years later in 2000, the current CEO, Sheree Watson, joined the group and helped transform the practice into a highlyfunctioning organization. In 2008, the physicians of Graystone determined it was in the best interest of their patients to merge their two Hickory offices and ambulatory surgery center into one combined location. The current Hickory campus was established as the central headquarters, a full-service eye care practice, and a fully accredited surgery center.

From 2009 to 2012 the Lenoir office was fully renovated, the new Lincolnton building was completed, and at the invitation of Dr. William Atkins, Graystone entered the High Country with the acquisition of Watauga Eye in Boone.

2016 brought the construction of the new Boone building, as the physicians of Graystone merged their Boone and Linville offices. 2019 was another big milestone year with Graystone’s 50th Anniversary, and their continued investment in the community with the expansion of the Hickory location.

Their 40,000-square-foot addition houses a Vision Correction suite, full-service Cosmetic and Aesthetic Center, and adds additional operating rooms to the existing Surgery Center space. By keeping up with the latest in science and technology, the practice continues to focus on comprehensive eye care, cataracts, glaucoma, refractive procedures (iLASIK), corneal disorders, retinal disorders, pediatric vision disorders, oculofacial plastics (functional and aesthetic services) and optical services.

The team at Graystone Eye (thirteen board certified ophthalmologists) offers the latest in laser surgery and advanced technology lenses. Graystone is a fully accredited retinal research facility and is proud to offer new treatment options for patients.

The practice takes pride in its rich history throughout the region and continues to evolve to offer the best in advanced eye care. The mission is and has always been to preserve the gift of sight and enhance lives — one patient at a time.


Hickory (Graystone Eye & Surgery Center, Graystone iLASIK, & Graystone Aesthetic Center) 2424 Century Place SE, Hickory, NC 28602

Lincolnton (Graystone Eye) 2311 E. Main Street, Hwy 150, Lincolnton, NC 28092

Lenoir (Graystone Eye) 2060 Hickory Boulevard, SW (Hwy 321S), Lenoir, NC 28645

Boone (Graystone Eye) 2640 Hwy 105, Suite 102, Boone, NC 28607



For the area’s 55+ adults who place no limits on living their best lives! | FEBRUARY 2023 47

I Wish You LOVE

February is best known for Valentine’s Day but, let’s face it, Valentine’s Day is mainly for ad agencies whose goal is to convince us that unless we splurge on things from roses to chocolates to dinner (the price of a house payment), our lover will be our lover no longer — or at the least will be highly annoyed, and for a long time! Valentine’s Day was fun in elementary school when we exchanged those little candy hearts and cards. My wife and I agreed long ago that Valentine’s Day was one fake holiday we would not celebrate. Therefore, this month’s column will be about love, but not the Valentine’s Day phony variety.

love foR family

My dear wife is the kindest person I have ever known, and it is through our children and grandchildren — our most important legacy — that I continue to learn about the depth that love can reach. As I have arrived at the autumn of my life, I have learned to love my extended family. My parents, who have passed on, taught my brother and me that love is not about possessions and that being rich or poor is mostly a state of mind. These days I have a deep love for my extended family — the oldest who remain with us and my ancestors of years gone by. I have found an abundance of heroes there.

love foR tHe almigHty

I have not been a churchperson for a long time — I am a Methodist, who for my first 23 years was a Southern Baptist. I am spiritual, but I still subscribe to the Big Bang Theory. However, I cannot logically believe that our universe came from nothing. For me, before the Big Bang, there was a spirit. And that spirit was the entity, the Almighty, who spoke the universe into existence.

love foR Hawaii

If you come to our home, you are likely to hear Hawaiian music playing throughout. In the cacophony of our world, Hawaiian music soothes chaos. If you travel to the Islands more than once, you will likely feel a presence you cannot easily explain — a feeling in your soul. It is not the relaxation that 80 degrees brings any time of year. It is not the incredible landscape of green mountains and cerulean oceans in equal measure. When I encountered the Hawaiian people a longer time, I felt an unexplainable essence. Peaceful. Generous. Loving. Graceful. Forgiving of a country — our country that erased an island culture of more than 1,600 years. Yet they treat us with a grace that is undoubtedly divine.


love foR teacHeRs and students

They were the substance of my professional life for 47 years, and I love them both in equal measure. Whether kindergarten teachers who take little blobs of protoplasm and teach them to read in one year, middle school teachers who teach the most difficult hormone-overloaded teens, high school teachers who take 15-year-old goofballs and turn them into college-ready seniors, or the most loving and indispensable of all — the teachers of special needs children. I love them all.

love foR wRiteRs

I have my favorite writers like Pat Conroy, James Lee Burke and Robert Parker, but I don’t love the writers. My love is their words that transport me to new worlds. James Lee Burke and Pat Conroy are connoisseurs of the English language, and it is a pleasure to read their books simply for the beauty of their composition. Yet there are Robert Parker and John D. MacDonald, whose prose is beautifully sparse, but their use of only bare and necessary language tells a story with the same art as Conroy or Burke.

love foR music

Consider some of the lyrics from one of the great love songs, I Will Always Love You, written and recorded by Dolly Parton on RCA Victor in 1974 (lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC). When she ended the partnership, she wrote it for her mentor and partner of seven years, Porter Wagoner.

If I should stay Well, I would only be in your way And so I’ll go, and yet I know I’ll think of you each step of the way

And I will always love you I will always love you

Bitter-sweet memories That’s all I’m taking with me Good-bye, please don’t cry ‘Cause we both know that I’m not What you need

But I will always love you I will always love you

And I hope life, will treat you kind And I hope that you have all That you ever dreamed of Oh, I do wish you joy And I wish you happiness But above all this I wish you love I love you I will always love you … | FEBRUARY 2023 49
“My love is their words that transport me to new worlds. “
LAKE NORMAN CURRENTS | FEBRUARY 2023 50 LKN Financial Center | 16140 Northcross Drive| Huntersville, NC 28078 toll free: 1.888.949.7475 | local: 704.509.1141 | Fee-Based Comprehensive Financial Planning ❖ Wealth Accumulation ❖ Wealth Preservation ❖ Retirment Planning ❖ Estate Planning ❖ Long Term Care ❖ Life Insurance Planning ❖ Medicare Planning Fee-based financial planning and investment advisory services are offered by A4 Wealth Advisors, LLC a Registered Investment Advisor an SEC investment advisor. Insurance products and services are offered through A4 Insurance Solutions. A4 Wealth Advisors LLC and A4 Insurance Solutions are affiliated companies. John Balcerzak, CFP® Shauntae Funkhouser, CPRS™ Investment Advisor Representative Medicare Benefits Coordinator 704.897.0267 Creating Lifestyles, Building LegaciesTM Retirement Living at its Best Nestled off of Davie Avenue, minutes from Historic Downtown Statesville, and convenient to both I-77 & I-40. • Deluxe, Private and Companion Suite options • Residence Medical Director • Full Service Dining Room • Social, Educational, Cultural, Devotional & Recreational programs • Pet Friendly • Medication Management • Assistance with activities of daily living such as bathing, dressing, toileting and ambulation. • Transportation Services • 1 and 2 Bedroom w/single car garage • Full Kitchen w/ applicances including washer & dryer • Weekly housekeeping • Lunch & Dinner served daily • Electricity, Cable, internet and Life Line Alert sysytem included • Pet Friendly 2147 Davie Ave., Statesville Schedule a tour today by calling: 704.878.0123 THE GARDENS OF STATESVILLE CARDINAL VILLAGE Voted Readers’ Choice 2017
Education • Community Inspiration • Entertainment This local “Classical-jazz-pop-R&B-gospel fusion quartet” is ready to entertain! Sharing true stories from the participants of the Freedom Rides of 1961 as well as many other individuals involved in the early struggle for AfricanAmerican equality. Legendary musician affiliated with John Mayer. Folk/Americana. Mark your calendar! SHOWS! Cain Center for the Arts | 21348 Catawba Ave, Cornelius NC 28031 • 980.689.3101 Shows & Classes CLASSES!

A Resolution You Can Keep!

This morning while drinking my second cup of coffee and searching “New Year’s Resolutions,” I read that the vast majority of us make resolutions … and the vast majority have given up on them by mid-January. I resolved to limit my coffee intake to one cup per day. Yes, it’s mid-January and I, too, have fallen short with my resolution (although I’m happy to report that I found articles supporting both my one cup and my then, and now, extra cup habit!).

Most resolutions are about health and wellness, both physical and financial. I found myself asking, is there a resolution that bolsters your health and wellness, both physical and financial, is cost effective, easy to accomplish and something I will stick to without daily, weekly or even monthly ongoing effort?

The answer is yes, and it’s much easier than the pledge to lose 20 pounds or, for some, give up that extra cup of coffee.

Review Your Estate Plan

If you have one, make sure that your named beneficiaries, fiduciaries, beneficiary designated accounts and assets are still served and managed properly by your current documents.

If you do not have an estate plan (trust/will, durable power of attorney, health care power of attorney, advanced directive), resolve to get one! These documents give you and your family greater control over the two great inevitables in life — death and taxes — and the

periods of incapacity many of us will face, particularly as we live longer.

Having these documents prepared by an Estate Planning Attorney minimizes the chances of having to seek, and pay for, unwanted court, social services and medical community intervention. The mental health boost of knowing you have protected and provided for yourself and your loved ones, the physical health reward inherent in decisions made by you and your designated agents, and the financial benefits of letting your estate plan protect and manage your assets for you and future generations, are all part of having a custom estate plan.

Check off this one resolution in 2023: get your estate plan in order (and enjoy that second cup of coffee!).

The McIntosh Law Firm, P.C. 704-892-1699

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First Party Special Needs Trusts

Having a comprehensive estate plan is important for everyone, especially those with children or other family members who are disabled or have special needs. Most people with special needs will depend on public government benefits in their lifetime, including Medicaid or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). These public benefits are determined based on a person’s “means,” meaning there is a strict limit an individual can have in assets and income. When a person is receiving government benefits and has an increase in assets, the government benefits are threatened, and the individual may be disqualified from receiving the benefits. A way to protect these assets is through a Special Needs Trust (SNT).

There are multiple types of SNTs (also referred to as Supplemental Needs Trusts). Last month’s article explained a Testamentary Special Needs Trust. This article will briefly review a First Party Funded SNT.

A First Party SNT (also known as a self-settled SNT, Medicaid pay back trust or a d4A trust) is typically used when a person with a disability inherits money or property outright or by a personal injury or court settlement. This type of SNT is created under federal law, 42 U.S.C. § 1396p(d)(4)(A). The disabled individual’s assets are placed in this SNT and the disabled individual is the beneficiary of the trust. A separate trustee manages the trust and will use the funds for the beneficiary’s benefit that is not already being provided for by Medicaid or other government agency.

There are specific legal requirements for a First Party Funded SNT that must be met for it to comply with federal

law. This includes, but is not limited to, the beneficiary being under the age of 65 when the trust is created, the trust must be irrevocable and it must include a Medicaid payback provision in the Trust, meaning that if the beneficiary dies and there is still money left in the Trust, Medicaid will be reimbursed for any money paid by Medicaid for the beneficiary. It is important to speak to an attorney who is experienced with special needs planning to draft these types of trusts and make sure it complies with federal law.

Danielle Feller is the lead estate planning attorney at Daly Mills Estate Planning. She is a native of Mooresville, an AV Preeminent Rated attorney in Estate Planning, Rising Star Super Lawyer and is published in a chapter with Wealthcounsel’s second edition of “Estate Planning Strategies, Collective Wisdom, Proven Techniques.” Give Feller a call today for a consultation at 704.878.2365 or visit

Danielle Feller

Give Danielle a call today for a consultation at 704-878-2365. You can also visit our website at www.

Love your ride! Service Appointments: 704-663-4994 Find it today at Randy Marion Subaru COME VISIT OUR NEW FACILITY 301 W. Plaza Dr. | Mooresville 28117 Mon -Fri. 7:30am - 8:00pm | Sat 8:00am - 8:00pm | FEBRUARY 2023 55 Call To Start Service Today! 704-222-2639 A FULL SERVICE WASTE MANAGEMENT COMPANY • Front Load Garbage & Recycling Service • Compactors • Residential Waste & Recycling Service • 15 & 30 Yard Roll Off Dumpsters

Living Well

Your local resource for health and wellness services near you


PHC – Lake Norman Ear, Nose & Throat

Megan Mathis-Webb, AuD

Susie Riggs, AuD

Del L. Hawk, Au.D

140 Gateway Blvd. Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-664-9638


PHC – Heart & Vascular

Jips Zachariah, MD Naveed Rajper, MD 359 Williamson Road Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-235-1829


PHC – Mooresville Dermatology


Naomi Simon, MD

Michael Redmond, MD

Sarah Carlock, MD

Kristin Prochaska, PA-C

Gina Noble, PA-C

Heather Hollandsworth, FNP

Susan Stevens, RN, BSN

Michelle Caamano, RN, BSN

Laetitia Cloete, Licensed Aesthetician 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


PHC- Endocrinology

Elaine Sunderlin, MD

170 Medical Park Road, Floor 3 Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-664-9506

Family Medicine

PHC – Nabors Family Medicine

Emily Nabors, MD

142 Professional Park Drive Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-696-2083

PHC – Lake Norman Family Medicine

Timothy A. Barker, MD

Heather C. Kompanik, MD

Bruce L. Seaton, DO

Amanda H. Bailey, DO Kyle Babinski, DO Sherard Spangler, PA 357 Williamson Road Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-664-7328

PHC – Sailview Family Medicine

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

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

Janeal Bowers, FNP Kimberly Whiton, FNP Kelly Buchholz, FNP 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 – Gastroenterology

Brandon Marion, 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

PHC- Gastroenterology

Laila Menon, MD

Gabrielle Miller, NP 170 Medical Park Road, Floor 3 Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-664-9506

Internal Medicine

PHC – Fox Internal Medicine Jessica Fox, DO Jacqueline Swope, FNP 435 East Statesville Avenue Mooresville, NC 28115 • 704-663-5056

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

Mental Health Services

PHC-Mastor Mental Health Jason E. Mastor, MD Kristin C. Brown, PA-C Megan I. Flott, PA-C Diana J. Remenar, PA-C 206 Joe V. Knox Ave. Suite F Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-662-6500


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


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 NailaRashida Frye, MD Coral Bruss, ANP-C 131 Medical Park Road, Suite 102 Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-663-1282


Southern Oncology Specialists William Mitchell, MD Poras Patel, MD 46 Medical Park Rd, Suite 212 Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-659-7850

Orthopaedic Surgery

PHC – Piedmont Bone & Joint Scott Brandon, MD

Brett L. Feldman, MD

Alex Seldomridge III, MD Kim Lefreniere, PA-C 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

Pain Managment

PHC – Pain & Spine Center

Harsh Govil, MD, MPH

James Murphy, MD April Hatfield, FNP-C 359 Williamson Road Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-235-1829


PHC –Pulmonology

Enrique Ordaz MD

Jose Perez MD

Ahmed Elnaggar, MD

Vishal Patel, MD

170 Medical Park Road, Suite 201, 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

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dine out & Wine Down Lake Norman’s Finest Restaurants, Pubs and Wine Bars WEEKDAYS $1.50 House Oysters: 2-7PM TUESDAYS $25 Bottles of Wine THURSDAYS $20 Sirloin & Shrimp Filé Voted ‘Best Seafood’ LKN (2022) Book Now & We’ll SEA You Soon! 9615 Bailey Rd | Cornelius, NC 28031 | 704-237-3247 | The harder we try, The better the results The better the results, The better it tastes The better it tastes, The more customer satisfaction The more custemer satisfaction, The higher the recommendation The higher the recommendation, The higher the expectation The higher the expectation, The harder we try VALENTINE’S DAY SPECIAL MENU! Tuesday, February 14th • 5-8:30pm • Reservations Only 275 N Main St, | Troutman, NC 28166 (704) 528-1204 CURRENTS LOVES local dining! Show off your business today! Contact Sharon Simpson at Serving the LKN community for 17 years Award winning wings, pizza and pasta in a warm, family pub atmosphere We deliver our own food! Mon through Thurs 4pm to 10pm Fri, Sat , Sunday 11am to 10pm 704-439-4444 FOOTBALL, FRIENDS, FOOD & FUN! We’ve got it all at Prosciuttos! [\ [\ GOURMET NEW YORK STYLE BRICK-OVEN PIZZAS AND CALZONES MADE FROM THE BEST INGREDIENTS

Seafood isn’t the only thing on the menu at The Waterman Fish Bar in Cornelius. Check out their delicious drink menu as well.

Dine + Wine

Eating, drinking, cooking and fun | FEBRUARY 2023 59
Photography by Shrimp & Grisettes


Philosophy 101

Sharing a winemaker’s take on his craft, and tasting the results

Going back hundreds of years, you arrive in the world of alchemy. The philosophers’ stone is a mythic alchemical substance capable of turning base metals, such as lead, into gold or silver. For many centuries, it was the most sought-after item in alchemy. A branch of this lore has survived to this day. It’s the magic of turning juice from pressed grapes into fine wine.

Hanover Park Vineyards is, to my knowledge, the only North Carolina winery to ever be showcased in France – specifically, in Paris and Burgundy. In Paris, it was served at an exclusive luncheon hosted by one of the city’s most celebrated chefs and, on the panel, the publisher of one of France’s premiere dining guides, Bottin Gourmand In Burgundy, it was at a prestigious, Grand Cru winery. It can all be summed up in a quote from the visits: “Where in the United States is this Caroline du Nord?”

An observation – over the past few years there’s been a movement toward more powerful wine. Merely because of their “oomph,” the most powerful wines get more attention at wine tastings and competitions. So, as more wines vie for attention, wines are becoming increasingly powerful.

That goes completely against the grain for Michael Helton. Maybe

the reason behind such great French recognition for his wines lies in his overarching philosophy.

“My wines are meant to be paired with food, not to be the most powerful thing you ever put on your palate,” he says. That came through for me with his special wine for that day, his 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon.

It goes back to that alchemy trick – the magic of turning juice from pressed grapes into fine wine. I once had a winemaker tell me that the secret behind fine wine is, “Start with great grapes and then don’t screw up.” So, let’s look at Helton’s grapes.

The Cabernet Sauvignon grapes were grown on some of the first vines the Heltons planted some 18 years ago. They were planted in North Carolina soil that Helton and a group of experts thought would produce prime grapes; they did. These are mature vines, and that showed through in the wine they produced.

There was also the care and attention that the wine got at the winery. The grapes were harvested in 2016 and the wine had just been released. The amount of gentle aging the wine had gone through – six years in specialty French oak barrels – is impressive.

DINE + WINE - wine time
by Trevor Burton photography by Trevor Burton
We taste and savor The philosopher speaks…

Then there was a test of Helton’s philosophy regarding the wine’s aroma and taste. This was a nuanced wine. Not an ounce of “oomph” but with a complexity that made it one of the most satisfying Cabernet Sauvignons that I’ve had the pleasure to encounter.

Finally, came more proof. This wine was paired with what Amy Helton and her team had created in the kitchen. We paired the wine with braised short ribs in a wine-based gravy. Simple perfection. It’s no wonder the French were so impressed.

Along with three other courses and wines, this was my idea of a great meal – excellence made to look easy. Along with Michael Helton’s philosophy, there was thought that went into our lunch. The thought was simply understated but ever-present. And it didn’t hurt that the location was three rooms in an old farmhouse built in 1897 in the North Carolina countryside. It was a feeling of comfort, warmth, and relaxation, along with great food and those glasses of wine.

With philosophy to feed the mind with food and wine to delight the palate, this was a lunch to remember. | FEBRUARY 2023 61 Offering a wide variety of therapeutic modalities to assist you in reaching your goals. 10225-A Hickorywood Hill Ave, Huntersville, NC 28078 704-796-9037 BRAINSPOTTING Where you look affects how you feel BYPASS THE CONSCIOUS TO ACCESS THE DEEPER, EMOTIONAL AND BODY-BASED PARTS OF THE BRAIN. Brainspotting locates points in the client’s visual field that help to access unprocessed trauma in the subcortical brain. This therapy can heal underlying trauma that contributes to anxiety, depression and other behavioral conditions. It can also be used with performance and creativity enhancement. Simply the best... for your pet! • Advanced Medicine & Surgery • Laser • Wellness Plans • Online Pharmacy • Boarding • Grooming • Vaccines/Dental Care • Exotic Pet Medicine/Boarding Alisha Fennell DVM Convenient location Adjacent to Petco & Target 10110 Northcross Center Ct, Huntersville, NC 28078 704-439-0600 Alycen Adams DVM Simply the best... for your pet! • Advanced Medicine & Surgery • Laser • Wellness Plans • Online Pharmacy • Boarding • Grooming • Vaccines/Dental Care • Exotic Pet Medicine/Boarding Alisha Fennell DVM Convenient location Adjacent to Petco & Target 10110 Northcross Center Ct, Huntersville, NC 28078 704-439-0600 Alycen Adams DVM Simply the best... for your pet! • Advanced Medicine & Surgery • Laser • Wellness Plans • Online Pharmacy • Boarding • Grooming • Vaccines/Dental Care • Exotic Pet Medicine/Boarding Alisha Fennell DVM Convenient location Adjacent to Petco & Target 10110 Northcross Center Ct, Suite 100 Huntersville, NC 28078 704-439-0600 Alycen Adams DVM • Preventative Care and Advanced Medicine for varying species • Specialized Referral Services and Surgical Procedures for Avians and Exotics • Dental Care • Ultrasound • Laser Therapy • Wellness Plans • Online Pharmacy • Grooming Convenient Location Adjacent to Petco & Target 10110 Northcross Center Ct, | Suite 100 | Huntersville, NC 28078 •••••••••••• 704-439-0600 | Alisha Fennell, DVM Alycen Adams, DVM Tracey Ritzman, DVM DABVP

A Winter Soup to Warm the Soul

Simple Italian Escarole, Sausage & Bean Soup

This soup — like many Italian dishes, born from peasant cooking — exemplifies that simple is often best. At its heart, this broth-based soup simply paired a head of escarole, with creamy white beans, garlic and a little sausage. It’s done in about 30 minutes, makes a perfect dinner on a cold winter’s day and will warm up any soul.

If you are not familiar with escarole, it is a bitter green in its raw form that is part of the chicory family. It looks very similar to lettuce but is full of nutrients. Escarole can be found at most grocery stores and farmers’ markets in the fall and winter months. The bitterness of these greens is mellowed by simmering them in broth along with the fatty sausage and creamy beans.

Of course, to amp up the Italian flavors, this recipe certainly benefits by the addition of parmesan, onion and a cup of uncooked pasta, but this soup is brilliant on its own as well.

Servings: 6

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 25 minutes

Kathy Dicken lives in Huntersville and is the author of The Tasty Bits food blog.

For more meal ideas that are simple and delicious, you can follow her blog at or on Instagram @thetastybits.


2 Tbsp. olive oil ½ sweet onion, finely diced 1-½ tsp. minced garlic Dash of red pepper flakes 1 lb. Italian sausage, either ground or links removed from casings (pork or chicken) 4 cups chicken stock 1 bunch fresh escarole, washed and roughly chopped 2 15 oz. cans cannellini beans (or Great Northern beans), drained ¾ cup ditalini pasta (or similar small pasta) Grated parmesan for garnish


In a large pot over medium heat, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add onion and cook until slightly soft, about 5 minutes. Next, add garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Next, add sausage to the mixture, and using a wooden spoon, break up the sausage and cook until browned. Once browned, add chicken broth, pasta (if using) and escarole. Stir together and let simmer for 15 minutes. Finally, add canned cannellini beans, mix and heat through. Top with grated Parmesan, if desired and serve with crusty bread.


Escarole can be very dirty, so it’s best to soak the leaves in water. Fill a large bowl with cold water and soak the leaves for 5-10 minutes to make sure the soil has time to come off the leaves. Then, simply pat it dry with paper towels before chopping. To create a more full-bodied broth, only drain one can of the cannellini beans; the liquid in the second can adds heartiness.

For extra flavor, add the rind of the parmesan cheese while the soup simmers. | FEBRUARY 2023 63

The Shore is Closer Than

DINE + WINE - nibbles & bites
You Think! The Waterman Fish Bar Brings Ocean Delights to Cornelius
by Tony Ricciardelli photography by Shrimp & Grisettes
The Waterman Blackened Seafood Platter

If you’re hankering for salty air, undulating waves, the sound of the surf and strolls in the sand, you’ll have to spend a few east-bound hours behind the wheel to quell those yearnings. If dining on fresh ocean fare is your mission and you’re not keen on eating the “seafood” offered at fast-food chains and meat-oriented restaurants, there are options. You can pick up a bag of frozen fish sticks at your local supermarket and bemoan the experience, or you can visit The Waterman Fish Bar in Cornelius, one of several establishments operating under the High Tide Hospitality Group. The company prides itself in serving farm-to-fork oysters and its partnerships with coastal fishermen. The company procures only responsibly sourced fish and non-threatened species.

The Waterman Fish Bar in Cornelius opened in April 2022. Its introduction to the lake area drew seafood lovers and restaurant enthusiasts alike. During its first month, Waterman’s customers waited an hour or more for seating. It was a good start that continues 10 months later. The kitchen routinely shucks 30 bushels of oysters per week, amounting to more than 100,000 oysters to date; it serves about 1,000 pounds of fish per month. The word “Waterman” is an appropriate tribute to the workers — fishermen, oyster farmers and others — who work the waters, braving the elements to provide fish to non-local fish locations.

The restaurant accommodates 110 indoor guests and offers seating for 98 in the outdoor patio, which includes a firepit and is dog-friendly. Customers can also enjoy a seat at the bar which has a big screen tv and a 360-degree view of the surroundings.

Culinary Director Chucc Landry oversees the menu and recipe development for six restaurants in the High Tide Hospitality Group. He’s a man wearing many hats: coaching his kitchen staff, managing food procurement, maintaining vendor relations. Landry, who hails from New Orleans, recounts his arrival to the Lake Norman area.

“For me, it was like migrating to another country,” he says. “The customs, culture, common food pairings and culinary styles were different. I had to learn North Carolina food preferences, and now I add my own New Orleans spin to those dishes.”

The menu’s raw bar is a customer favorite with changing daily options including oysters from Beausoleil in New Brunswick, Canada; Delaware Wilds of Delaware Bay; Rochambeau in Nandua Creek, Virginia; Malpeque on Prince Edward Island, Canada; and Deer

Creek at Hood Canal, Washington. Fresh catch choices include salmon, cod, swordfish, shrimp, scallops, trout and catfish. Waterman also boasts several shareable seafood choices including Crispy Calamari and Voodoo Shrimp. The menu is unpretentious and varied.

The bar features more than 20 beers from local breweries and bigbrand brewers alike, including Catawba Brewery, Sugar Creek, Ass Clown, Narragansett, Michelob and Heineken. The Espresso Martini is a popular cocktail which includes Smirnoff Whipped Cream Vodka, Café Lolita, Irish cream and Pure Intentions Cold Brew. More than a dozen white and red wines are available.

The restaurant holds “Community Nights” every third Wednesday of the month; 20 percent of the earnings are donated to non-profits, and the restaurant has a vision for expanding its community support with additional donations, raffles, youth team sponsorships and more.

“We value all clientele and cultures patronizing our establishment. They’re not only our guests, they’re also our community. It’s about making connections and building relationships,” says Brand Director Alex Flores. “Guest feedback is important, and we listen closely to our customers. We want to be known as ‘the local seafood spot.’ The company operates on the belief that ‘a rising tide lifts all ships.’ It’s a metaphor that translates well to the relationships we foster with area residents, businesses and non-profits.”

Indira Holder, Assistant General Manager at The Waterman Fish Bar, was so impressed with the restaurant that she knew she had to pursue a career there.

“The Waterman was the first restaurant I visited when I moved to this area,” says the culinary school graduate. “I was taken with the staff, the service and, obviously, the food, so I applied for a job, and here I am running the front of the house.”

Perhaps you’ll develop the same affinity for good service, authentic seafood dining and community when visiting The Waterman Fish Bar. Check them out.

The Waterman Fish Bar is at 9615 Bailey Road, Cornelius. For more information, visit or call 704.237.3247. | FEBRUARY 2023 65
Left: Culinary Director Chucc Landry Center: The Waterman Fish Bar Outdoor Patio Right: The Waterman Shrimp Po Boy

Whether you are gifted new jewelry from a loved one, become engaged, or have valuable antique jewelry passed down to you, you’ll want to think about insuring any expensive pieces on an insurance policy.

Most Homeowners policies limit coverage for jewelry to only $1,500 for theft on premises, which is where scheduling or listing your valuable jewelry on your policy becomes beneficial. You may also put these items on their own separate policy, known as a Personal Inland Marine policy. Scheduling your jewelry ensures you get the full appraised value of the item after a covered loss – even if it is mysteriously lost, which we know can easily happen with such small pieces of jewelry.

Depending on the value of the scheduled item, the insurance carrier may require that you provide a recent appraisal before coverage is provided. The general cost to schedule your jewelry is 10% of the appraised value. You should have your jewelry appraised every few years to make sure you have adequate coverage.

Scan the QR code to learn more about coverage for your valuable items and a tip we recommend!

(704) 875-3060 | FEBRUARY 2023 67
Personal Lines Account Manager who
to learn
Personal Lines Account Manager Allie is our
is eager
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Protecting Our LKN Community with
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Finding Your Beer

Opening a new business is never a cakewalk and virtually always unpredictable, but there are ways to plan for last-minute hurdles and hiccups. You have extra staff on hand, maybe stock a little more inventory than you would need and always — always — stay on the balls of your feet to be ready to change direction at a moment’s notice.

But when your planned grand opening occurs five days into a global pandemic lockdown, what page in your operations manual do you flip to for instructions on dealing with that? Royal Bliss Brewing Co. owners Ginger and Larry Griffin weren’t sure, but they did know one thing.

DINE + WINE - on tap
by Lori Helms photography by Lisa Crates
Royal Bliss Brewing Co. in Denver Can Help
Ginger Griffin and her husband, Larry, have created a little bliss oasis with their brewery in Denver.

“You have to do something with that beer,” Ginger says, thinking back about that time in March 2020. “It doesn’t last forever.” Brew master Chris Wertman (or as Ginger describes him, “employee number one” as their first and most critical hire) and his small staff at the fledgling Denver brewery had been brewing heavily leading up to that day in March almost three years ago, and Executive Chef Bobby Lamby had a small but eclectic menu ready to roll out for the big opening. After throwing “Plan A” out the window, Ginger says thanks to their ability to can their own crowlers (essentially a 32 oz. canned growler) and Lamby’s creativity with an impromptu take-out menu, they still opened their doors to Lake Norman’s curious craft beer fans — and have survived to tell the tale.

But it’s a tale that starts well before that crazy time in early 2020. Ginger says after Griffin Brothers Tires in Cornelius was sold in 2016, Larry found himself with more time on his hands. As she tells it, that’s not a good thing for someone who enjoys being busy. At about the same time, their children were getting older and required (okay, preferred) less of their parent’s time and attention, so Ginger and Larry began to explore the area’s craft breweries. They found they enjoyed the relaxing, comfortable vibe at most of them, and an idea began to take hold in Larry’s active imagination.

“I think we could open a brewery,” he said after about a year of drinking in what all of them had to offer. Ginger, who had her own marketing agency at the time that kept her quite busy (and managed to sell it just weeks before the pandemic shutdowns hit), began to question her husband’s sanity.

“You’ve lost your mind, why would you say that?” she asked him. “We don’t know anything about the beer business.” But he remained undeterred, insisting that between his business acumen, her marketing expertise and by hiring the right brew master that they could make quite the go of it.

Nearly three years later, Royal Bliss has become an award-winning presence in the ever-popular craft brew industry. Their products can

be found in more than 220 locations in a footprint that stretches from Denver to Charlotte to Boone and Blowing Rock to WinstonSalem. They’re enjoying a great measure of success, but beyond that, they’re enjoying the experience of that success.

“In our industry, one thing I love about it is that it’s very friendly,” Ginger says. Although Royal Bliss was the first craft brewery to open locally, she says other breweries in the Lake Norman area were very supportive when it came to helping them get started. They even collaborated closely with the brew master at Eleven Lakes Brewing Company in Cornelius, who Ginger described as “an open book” when it came to answering their questions as new brewery owners.

Outside of their fellow brewers, the Griffins and Royal Bliss have connected with their community as well. In their first year alone, they donated approximately $26,000 to area charities, including the Coalition Against Domestic Violence, United Way, local veteran’s groups and animal shelters. Ginger says these connections are their way of giving back to the community that have continued to show the love — from the beginning of the pandemic to now.

“We are so fortunate and blessed, because the community has really supported us,” she says. “When we were open just for take-out at the beginning, we had people who would come every day just to get a sandwich. They would say, ‘We want y’all to make it.’ Some of those same people are still coming every week — we’ve made really lasting friendships.”

When asked if the idea of growth is brewing, Ginger is a bit philosophical in her take on that, quoting the Royal Bliss approach to craft brews.

“In life and beer, balance is bliss. And I want to live by that,” she says. “If we’re going to grow, Larry and I have to have that balance. If we can find the right formula, we’ll see.”

Left, Royal Bliss boasts seating for around 600, with trivia nights on Thursday and regular live music offerings. Right, ciders and seltzers add to the brewery’s 15-barrel system. Royal Bliss Brewing Co. is at 7532 Royal Bliss Court, Denver. Learn more about the brewery at or call them at 704.951.8388. | FEBRUARY 2023 69
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