Hope for Warmer Weather ‘Springs’ Eternal
At any given time here in the South during March, we can get lucky enough to experience one of those brief stretches where the temperatures tease blooms from our trees, bulbs from our yards and T-shirts from their winter hiding spots. But the cold, hard truth is that until the arrival of the first day of spring on March 20, the odds of winter still getting her frigid on between now and then (and sadly, sometimes even after that) remain quite strong.
That makes our March edition the perfect opportunity to help get you thinking about what lies ahead — slightly warmer days and more time spent outside enjoying everything our beautiful Lake Norman communities have to offer.
We spent some time visiting with homeowners Drema and Ronnie Bice, who have created an outdoor oasis for their growing family (eight grandchildren and counting) — essentially pulling the indoors outside by building spacious cooking, dining and lounging areas around a luxury pool, hot tub and deck space. There’s inspiration to be found in their ideas (beginning on Page 33) about how to create outdoor recreation and relaxation spaces for all ages.
We also learned more about Mooresville’s completely revamped outdoor skatepark (Page 26). The nearly $3 million project opened recently to much fanfare, making it the largest skatepark in the Southeast. It already had a rock-solid local following, but it will now attract legions of skateboarders, scooter enthusiasts and other fans of things with wheels from outside the region. The Town of Mooresville is even planning to hold the skatepark’s first competition sometime in June. Drop in Star Dust Skate Shop in Mooresville to see Daniel Devlin for anything you might need for your trip to Mooresville’s newest public attraction.
And if you’re looking at expanding time spent outdoors while expanding your horizons, check out Woodlawn School’s STEAMfest 2023 on March 26. The festival’s organizers plan to host more than 100 exhibitors spread around the campus who will offer free hands-on activities for all ages focused on exploring science, technology, engineering, arts and math. It will be a fun and educational way to spend a few hours on a Sunday afternoon in spring (yes, it will officially be here by then!).
As the weather begins to warm up, we’re also warming up a couple of our annual contests. The nomination process is now open for our 2023 Best of the Lake awards. Nominate your favorite local businesses — or even one of your own — in a wide range of categories by March 30 (see more info on Page 69) to see who will take home top honors. Voting will begin on April 1. We’re also ramping up for our annual Canine Cover competition. Find all the details on our Facebook page to learn how your favorite furry friend could end up on the cover of our July issue.
And there’s one more thing we hope you will warm up to — our new “Why We Love” feature, starting on Page 22. We hope you’ll share with us the things that make you love your town, your community, even a favorite local park or trail that may not be getting its due. This month, readers in Cornelius, Iron Station and Sherrills Ford shared with us why they love where they have settled. Our shared affinity for the Lake Norman area is clear, but we look forward to hearing why you love where you call home, no matter where around Lake Norman it may be.— LH Co-Editor Lori Helms Lori@LNCurrents.com
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 www.surveymonkey.com/r/BOTL2023
Alison Smith Alison@LNCurrents.com
Social Media Specialist
Design & Production idesign2, inc
Karel Bond Lucander
Lake Norman CURRENTS is a monthly publication available through direct-mail home delivery to the most affluent Lake Norman residents. It also is available at area Harris Teeter supermarkets, as well as various Chambers of Commerce, real estate offices and specialty businesses.
The entire contents of this publication are protected under copyright. Unauthorized use of any editorial or advertising content in any form is strictly prohibited. Lake Norman CURRENTS magazine is wholly owned by Oasis Magazines, Inc.
Mission Statement: Lake Norman CURRENTS magazine will embody the character, the voice and the spirit of its readers, its leaders and its advertisers. It will connect the people of Lake Norman through inspiring, entertaining and informative content, photography and design; all of which capture the elements of a well-lived life on and around the community known as Lake Norman.
Movers, Shakers, Style, Shopping, Trends, Happenings and More at Lake Norman
NEWS Around the Lake
Women’s tennis league donates to HOMe
Following a very cold day on the courts of round-robin tennis to celebrate the end of their fall season, members of the Piedmont Interclub tennis league had purchased enough raffle tickets and mimosas at the event to raise nearly $5,000 for Hope of Mooresville (HOMe).
Despite the weather, about 100 women attended the event that included tennis, a boxed lunch from Famous Toastery and gift basket raffles (oh yeah, and mimosas), all in support of HOMe, a Mooresville-based non-profit organization that provides temporary, safe shelter and support services to Mooresville’s homeless women and children. Several of Piedmont Interclub’s teams are based at racquet clubs and public courts in Mooresville.
Pictured with the classic “big check” are (from left) HOMe Executive Director Amy DeCaron and Piedmont Interclub representative and HOMe volunteer Sheila Hebert. Learn more about HOMe’s services at www.hopeofmooresville.org.
Cornelius car dealership changes hands in mega-deal
In mid-January, Cornelius residents Jack Salzman and Robin Smith Salzman sold their top-performing Lake Norman Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram dealership at Exit 28 in Cornelius to Parks Automotive Group. The sale also included the couple’s Gastonia Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram dealership, with the sale of the Cornelius dealership alone believed to have set a record for the highest value Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram dealership to ever trade hands.
“Over the course of nearly 20 years, we succeeded beyond our wildest dreams,” said Jack Salzman, “building teams that sold 70,000+ vehicles, and serviced over one million customers. We achieved the top volume in new car sales a staggering 88 months in a row and were in the top 10 in the country for both new and (pre-owned) sales.”
Parks Automotive now owns more than 200,000 square feet of space that includes not only a soon-to-open 55,000 square-foot, state-ofthe-art facility, but Carolina Custom and Lake Norman Commercial Center for custom and fleet builds covering 112,000 square feet – all within about a half-mile of each other.
Salzman says neither he nor his wife are exactly settling into retirement following the sale. He says he is devoting his time now to launching THIScar.com, what he says will be a “game changer for franchise dealers nationwide.” To learn what Robin will be doing with more free time on her hands, see our story on Page 28 about her philanthropic efforts through the family’s Giving with Grace Foundation.
Go behind the scenes with Mooresville PD
The application period is now open for the Mooresville Police Department’s 2023 Citizens Police Academy, a 12-week program designed to provide participants with a better understanding of the operations of their local police department.
Students will learn from police department personnel who are subject-matter experts in areas ranging from investigations to patrol and traffic operations, from special response teams to K9 and narcotics. A variety of presentations, demonstrations and hands-on scenarios will give participants a more in-depth look at the roles, duties and responsibilities of officers. Keep in mind, the Citizens Police Academycompiled by Lori Helms
is not intended to train citizens to become police officers but to help raise awareness, understanding and trust between citizens of the Mooresville community and the department.
The 2023 academy will begin March 14 and will conclude with a graduation ceremony on June 6. Academy sessions will be held on Tuesdays from 6 to 9 p.m. Academy applicants must be at least 18 years of age, have no outstanding warrants, no pending criminal charges and no prior felony convictions. Class size will be limited to 15 participants, and priority for attendance will be given to Mooresville residents.
The Citizens Police Academy application can be found online at www.mooresvillenc.gov or can be picked up at the Mooresville Police Department, 2847 Charlotte Highway. Completed applications must be delivered to the Mooresville Police Department by 5 p.m. on March 3.
For more information or questions about the academy, contact Assistant Chief Dyson or Officer Henderson at 704.664.3311.
Get moving with towns’ annual fitness challenge
The northern Mecklenburg towns of Cornelius, Davidson and Huntersville will host their third annual Mayors’ Fitness Challenge, where citizens from each town will join forces to earn the title of “Fittest Community.”
Participants from all three towns will work with wellness providers who will offer a variety of fitness programs. During the six-week challenge, participating in those programs will gain you additional points on top of the normal activity points you can receive. This year, an end-of-the-challenge event will be held on April 22, when the “Fittest Community” will be awarded. The event will be the last way to earn a lot of additional points for your team.
The challenge will run from March 12 to April 22, during which the goal is for your town to have the most active minutes each week. Participants are invited to join all three towns for the March 12 kickoff event at Bailey Road Park in Cornelius, from 2 to 4 p.m.
At the end of the six weeks, the town with the highest average total will be awarded the Fittest Community Trophy. To conclude the 2023 Mayors’ Fitness Challenge, the Town of Cornelius will host a 5k race (walk, jog, and/or run) on April 22.
Participants can register up to week three and should register under the town in which they reside. Those who register after the challenge has started will not be able to submit their minutes from past weeks. They will only be able to submit minutes that were accumulated in the current week.
Check with your town’s website or follow its Fitness Challenge Facebook group for registration information and challenge updates and events.
Annual “Men That Cook” charity event is back
After a three-year hiatus due to COVID-19, the “Men That Cook” fundraiser is ready to roll once again. A family-friendly event hosted by the Happy Hour Rotary Club of Huntersville with the help of corporate sponsors, this event has raised as much as $25,000 in previous years.
Come and see what they will be serving up on Sunday, March 26, and vote on your favorite dish. Tastings are prepared by community members who compete to raise prize money for their favorite local charity.
Held at Sweet Magnolia Estate at 10101 Bailey Road in Cornelius, participants are invited to mix and mingle while sampling cuisine from multiple cooking categories. Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door with a choice of two sessions: 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., or 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m. Tickets for children younger than 10 are $10. Chances will be available to win a “Happy Hour” cooler of cheer or one of several themed gift baskets.
Entry fees for cooking teams are $100 per team. To buy tickets, become a sponsor or register a team, call 704.905.5002 or visit www. lakenormanmenthatcook.info/.
Free fishing festival next month for vets
Operation North State (ONS), a non-profit and all-volunteer veterans support services organization, will host “Top Shelf Fishin’ Festival” on Thursday, April 20 — a free event on Lake Norman for “wounded warriors” and disabled veterans and their caregivers.
The festival will be held rain or shine, from 6:15 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and will launch out of the Pinnacle Access Area in Mooresville (1580 River Highway). Fishing licenses will be waived, and rods and reels, life vests, tackle, bait and snacks will also be provided free of charge for all participating veterans.
ONS provides recreational outings such as fishing, golf and cycling to wounded and disabled vets. For the Fishin’ Festival, boat hosts are needed, as well as contributions of food, beverages, prizes and financial contributions. Learn more at www.operationnorthstate.com or call Terry Snyder at 336.764.5967.
It’s a busy time of year at the Urban Air Adventure Park in Cornelius, says owner Chris Fasulka. A combination of cold weather and kids going stir-crazy because they’re trapped indoors is what brings them in droves to his facility, which was voted “Best Summer Camp” and “Best Kids Activity” in our Best of the Lake 2022 competition.
“We’re basically a 50,000 square-foot indoor adventure park,” he says. With 13 attractions all under one roof — from trampolines to bumper cars to a ropes course to climbing walls — he’s not kidding. And if full-on physical activity isn’t exactly what your young one is craving, there’s even a “Snapology” program that uses LEGO bricks and other means to teach children about science, technology, engineering, art and math. It would be a challenge to find something a child couldn’t explore at Urban Air.
As a mainstay of Urban Air’s offerings, Fasulka says birthday parties are the source of nearly half of his business. He says on a typical
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!
Urban Air Adventure Parkby Lori Helms
weekend, he hosts as many as 70 parties between Friday and Sunday — parties held in either one of his eight private party rooms or at one of the eight shared party tables.
And it’s not just the kids having a wild time there. Activities are available for adults, too. Fasulka says he hosts several team building events – usually about two to three hours long – throughout the year.
The park offers a variety of tickets and memberships, and there is a café offering pizza, popcorn, sweets and more to refuel after all that high-flying, high-energy fun.
‘Retail Therapy’ More Than
Denver Boutique Trades in Hugs and Smilesby Lori Helms photography by Jon Beyerle
There’s a popular landmark near the intersection of N.C. Highway 16 and Campground Road that Denver has become known for, and it’s not the Rock Springs Camp Meeting site that can trace its roots back more than 200 years.
Nope. It’s a giant metal sculpture of a black widow spider, and it sits on the front lawn of another historic site – an old home that decades ago used to serve as the parsonage for the Denver United Methodist Church. The sculpture was placed there more than 10 years ago when a pest management company made the home its offices, and it’s garnered so much interest since then it has its own mention on the website RoadsideAmerica.com.
That company has long since pulled up stakes and left, and now settled in its place since last August is Queen City Trading Co. Mercantile – a beautiful and eclectic boutique for women’s fashion, home décor, woodworking sculptures and more. The spider remains, but boutique owners Kristen and Patrick Martin plan on the home becoming more than just a selfie spot for the roadside curious. Their goal is to become a destination for anything that might strike your shopping fancy, or maybe a place to drop by for a chat, a visit on the porch or sometimes just a hug.
“I’m not afraid to hug,” Kristen says about the vibe she sets for the shop. “I will hug you.”
That’s not meant to sound like a threat, and she is far from intimidating. In fact, the warmth of the boutique’s aesthetic is a perfect accompaniment to the warmth extended by the Martins when customers enter the shop. Theirs is a different mission statement than what anchors most retail businesses. It’s based on building a sense of community, a safe place to enjoy with friends or to make new ones, a place where she and Patrick can share their service-driven yet playful personalities.
“We very much felt called to open a business and that it be a place where
people can come in and not just shop, but also to feel peaceful and to connect,” says Kristen. “After the last three years of (pandemic) craziness and people being disconnected, we wanted a place where people could come and feel seen.”
Cross the cozy front porch and step onto the original wood floors at the boutique’s entry, and it’s clear that the Martins have put their all into making that mission come true. It still has the feel of an old home, with the various rooms of the main floor showcasing a selection of women’s fashion in sizes small to 3X (“pieces made for a woman’s body” according to Kristen), all manner of interior décor items and a sprinkling of antiques – some for sale, some used for display such as the vintage apple picking ladder that occupies several feet along one wall.
It’s a calming vibe, so much so that Kristen says she has some regular customers who come in sometimes just for a deep breath or a good cry.
“It’s more than just retail therapy,” she says. And apparently, the word is getting around. The Martins have developed a strong following since August, and they hope to be even more welcoming as they look to introduce regular “Sip and Shop” events, birthday parties and anything else they can do to draw in more of the local community. And it appears Denver has responded. Queen City Trading’s free Santa event a few months ago had more than 600 people visit within only a couple of hours.
“What’s different about being in Denver is that I think people so badly want small businesses to come in here and thrive, that they’re going to go tell their neighbors,” Kristen says. “They want you to stay.”
As the business grows, the Martins plan for it to become a modern-day general store. The kitchen is undergoing remodeling so they can sell food, wine and charcuterie-type offerings, and there is an area out back to showcase Patrick’s woodworking sculptures. At some point, the plan is for the entire house to be shoppable, and to be known for affordable, approachable yet elegant-looking pieces.
“We built this whole business on faith,” Kristen says, pouring every last dollar they had into it to explore not just their shared creative passions but the calling they feel very strongly was placed on their hearts.
“We know for a fact that we were just supposed to open the door,” she says, “and it was to be an open door for people to come in for whatever need they have.”
What do you need? Stop by Queen City Trading Co. Mercantile at 6608 Campground Road, Denver, to find out, or shop them online at www.queencitytradingco.com.
If you are someone planning a wedding or celebration at a venue or at home, Special Event insurance should be on your to-do list no matter where or how big or small your event is.
Special Event insurance is one way to protect your investment in your festivities and secure coverage for the potential risks you may face.
What is Special Event insurance able to cover?
• Event Liability: This protection helps cover expenses for which you are found responsible, such as property damage to the rented venue or someone’s injuries during your event.
• Event Cancellation coverage: Certain situations may arise, forcing you to unexpectedly cancel or postpone your event. This cancellation coverage helps pay for costs you incur, such as lost deposits.
• Liquor Liability: If you are wanting liquor to be served at your wedding or other special event, you may add Liquor Liability coverage to your Event policy.
What events does Special Event insurance cover?
Examples of covered events are weddings, birthday parties, anniversary parties, graduation parties, baby showers, and religious celebrations.
Why We Love
My name is Denny Koller, and I had been living with year-round summer and the beauty of Southern California since 1986, and I loved it. However, after transferring to a job that required considerable travel to WinstonSalem, I realized that the Carolinas had benefits that had escaped me for many years: the beauty of the seasons, the pleasant, friendly charm of southern hospitality, the reasonable price of a gallon of gas, lakes that actually have water in them, and the quaint warmth of smaller towns. After retiring in 2015, I considered affordable places to live. My initial decision was Lake Wylie, SC. As a boat and lake enthusiast, it was a perfect place to settle. In addition, it had financial benefits that were appealing to my retirement. I enjoyed it there for about three years, but family and personal reasons took me back to the West Coast, but I knew that getting back to the Carolinas was in my future. As a home for my boat was necessary, this time I settled on Lake Norman. I was looking for an affordable home in a welcoming community, and I was drawn toward Iron Station. My research had indicated that Iron Station got its name because it was a mining town with a train station. So far, I haven’t found the train station; nevertheless, I decided to hook up my boat and drive across country with the bare necessities.
I have lived in Iron Station since June 2020. Shortly after moving here, I decided I needed a roommate. That roommate is a lovable Golden Retriever named Henry (my eighth Goldie!). This area turned out to be perfect for us. There are plenty of amenities in both Denver to the north and Lincolnton to the west, towns that provide a variety of stores, businesses and restaurants to enjoy, and all the county offices are easily accessible to conduct my necessary business. I’m happy here; Iron Station is a wonderful little hideaway.~ Denny Koller
In 1976, my wife and I moved from our lifelong home in Ohio to Winston-Salem, a place we had never even visited. After 35 years of working at R.J. Reynolds, we decided it was time to retire, but where? We made visits to various retirement communities along the coast, but nothing felt right. We decided to put our house up for sale while looking. Much to our surprise, it sold in five days and we had to be out in 20 days. Luckily, in the early 2000s we bought a weekend house on the lake in Sherrills Ford. With nowhere to go, we decided to move there until we found a permanent retirement home. It only took a few weeks for us to fall in love with the area. We are both avid tennis players, love the water and I love playing golf. We discovered everything we loved was here. Today, our entire family has discovered Lake Norman and joined us here. Our son Alex and his wife bought a home in our neighborhood; our daughter, her husband and two boys live in Huntersville. During the summer, the entire family comes to our house to enjoy spending time floating on the water, doing watersports and just having a great time. Another special thing about living here is that this side of the lake feels a bit more like living in a close rural community. You can enjoy all the special things it has to offer like new biking trails, hiking and taking our pontoon boat, the “Pon Tiki,” to places like the Landing for live music and adult beverages. And if we need something from the big city, Denver and Hickory are but a few minutes away. We have adopted Sherrills Ford as our home and plan for this to be the last home we ever own. It’s a great location, especially being around all of our family and great neighbors. What more could anyone ask for?~ JD Weber
Why do you love your community? We would love to hear!
Please email 250 words, a headshot, and a photo to tell us your story! lori@LNCurrents.com
My roots in the Lake Norman area run deep – I was raised here, my parents are graduates of North Mecklenburg High School in Huntersville and South Iredell High School in Troutman, and I still have extended family nearby. But when I graduated from Mooresville High School and set out on my own to build my hair styling business, I chose Cornelius as my home.
Twenty-three years later, and I’m in my own salon suite in the historic McCall House on North Main Street with a loyal clientele base – some of whom I’ve known for a few decades. I’ve been lucky to be part of Cornelius’ small business community, but my love for the town is more personal than that. It’s where I met my husband, Brian DiCosmo, just by chance at the “old” Starbucks on West Catawba Avenue. We were married at Trump National Golf Club in Mooresville and we’ll celebrate our eighth wedding anniversary in October.
One of the best parts of living in Cornelius is that we are so close – often within walking distance – to the things we enjoy. We’re not far from restaurants like 131 Main on Bailey Road, bars, coffee shops and music venues, and when we’re in the mood to wander outside of town, we’re a short drive to one of our favorite dining spots – Caruso’s in Mooresville.
The town is close to everything. Shopping opportunities are everywhere, I’m able to board my horse, Presto, nearby and, while I really love the beach, I can easily get my water fix on the lake. Cornelius has as much to offer as a much larger city but it still has that great small-town vibe.~ Brandee Honeycutt DiCosmo
Imagine. Discover. Explore.
Student Leaders Bring STEAMfest 2023 to Lifeby Lori Helms photography courtesy STEAMfest
“What is the saying, ‘Build it and they will come?’” asks Shannon Blakely.
It’s a bit of a rhetorical question, because she knows of what she speaks. As a co-founder of Woodlawn School’s STEAMfest – a day-long celebration of science, technology, engineering, arts and math through creative, hands-on activities — she has helped build something over the last few years that continues to grow. And the people continue coming to enjoy it.
The Mooresville private school’s annual event is a family affair for the Blakelys. Shannon is joined by her husband, Lee, who is also the chair of the school’s board of trustees, and her daughter, Lily, a junior at Woodlawn who has attended the school since kindergarten. Lee and Shannon do a great deal of the planning and outreach to the community to generate interest and participation in the festival, but it’s the student leaders who are doing the real coordination behind the scenes that have turned STEAMfest into such a joyful success.
Lily serves as STEAMfest’s volunteer coordinator, and it’s her responsibility for this year’s festival to recruit and organize volunteers for about 250 time slots. She says she started her recruitment efforts through email outreach to her fellow students, making it easy for them to sign up to volunteer at activity booths that match their interests. If they can’t be there the actual day of the event, they can participate by helping with marketing and social media outreach to create a STEAMfest buzz not only on campus, but throughout the Lake Norman community. It’s an awful lot of work, and Lee recognizes that.
“She reports to her dad, which is tough,” he says. “I’m a task master.” But Lily is not toiling away alone. She is joined by Woodlawn junior Anna Doble and senior Adina Jacobson. Doble is the founder and president of the school’s Rotary Interact Club, which will be responsible for festival
booth sponsor hospitality and guest registration, while Jacobson and her Women in STEM club (for which she is also the founder and president) is responsible for creating some of the activities for the event.
It’s a heavy lift for the students, but the event’s successful history speaks volumes for what these young leaders are capable of achieving.
From the time the school took the festival public in 2020 – it had traditionally been a “Family Science Day” just for students and their families – it has grown incrementally year after year, even looping in thousands of participants across 50 countries when it had to go virtual during the COVID-19 pandemic shutdowns in 2021. When STEAMfest was able to be held in person again by 2022, there were more than 60 activities attended by more than 1,000 students, their families and members of the community. And Lee says they are planning for an even more robust 2023 event.
On March 26, Lee says he expects there to be more than 100 activities, that will include multiple booths manned by volunteers from Davidson College, UNC Charlotte and Mitchell Community College as well as a wide variety of museums, community organizations and businesses. Attendance is expected to surpass 2,000 visitors. That’s a lot for such a small campus (about 10 times its student body), but it’s also a lot of fun.
“One of the unique things about the event is that you meet people who will say, ‘I came here for just 20 minutes two hours ago,’” says Woodlawn Head of School Paul Zanowski. “They can’t get their kids to leave. … School is supposed to be about joyful learning, and this is a day full of it.”
Chinoiserie Chic for Spring!
All of these items can be purchased at:1. Italian Arm Chair - $904 2. Chinoiserie Trinket Tray - $20 Board - $46 4. Custom Pillowsstarting at $79 Wreath - $69 6. Spring Florals - $7 and up 7. Bunny Vase - $39 Lamp - $495 9. Picture Frames - $29 and up
Mooresville Skatepark Offers World-Class Venue IN MOORESVILLE
Cool Weather, Cool Skatepark
Despite the rain and cool temperatures, the new Mooresville Skatepark opened on December 3, 2022. The excitement was evident as visitors and participants — some from out of state — rejected the weather to enjoy the music, food trucks and Mooresville’s latest outdoor attraction. The $2.8 million project replaced the previous skatepark built in 2008 which was, essentially, a 16,000 square-foot facility, or roughly one-third the size of the new skatepark. The original park included boxes (elevated, four-cornered structures made of wood or concrete upon which tricks can be performed), ledges and metal ramps. Much needed Phase 2 additions and improvements slated for later that year were indefinitely postponed due to the recession. The park’s growing popularity and regular use led to frequent repairs, which ultimately prompted the city to replace the original venue with a new, professional-grade facility.
The Skating Community is Heard
To ensure the final product fulfilled local skater requirements, acclaimed skatepark developers, Team Pain — producers and designers of skate parks and structures — assisted the town by compiling a 40-question survey asking for skater’s opinions and visions for the upcoming project. The local skateboarding community was eager to participate as user feedback was vital to the project design.
“Skaters knew what they wanted, and a collaboration between park users and the town were essential to the success of this project,” says Town of Mooresville Parks & Recreation Marketing Manager Don Smyle. “On the night of the vote, 100 skaters showed up to support their cause.” During the pandemic, meetings abated and the process was delayed, however, that delay allowed for additional community input. Ultimately, the park was designed by Team Pain, with the town awarding the construction contract to Cornelius-based general contractors JD Goodrum Inc.
The Old and the New
Once the original skatepark was dismantled, the ramps were resurfaced and the park’s pieces and parts were relocated to Mooresville’s War Memorial Recreation Center where they were reassembled and used as the interim skatepark. Those parts are now up for auction and, perhaps, they will find a future serving skatepark enthusiasts in another community. The process of building the new skatepark from groundbreaking to completion took nine months but was well worth the wait.
The new facility holds the outright distinction of being the largest skatepark in the Southeast. It includes two pool-style bowls, a quarter pipe, street plaza with handrails and a snake run suitable for beginners just learning to master banked surfaces. There are rest rooms and a viewing area as well. An art wall allowing participants to express themselves was designed by world-class aerosol artist Shane Pierce, who paints under the name Abstract Dissent. “Dos and Don’ts” and park policies are readily posted for all to see.
“This skatepark checks all the boxes for world-class competition,” says Daniel Devlin, decades-long skateboarder and owner of Star Dust Skate Shop in Mooresville. “Skateboarders, BMX bikers, scooter enthusiasts and inline skaters can come here to learn, improve their skills and have fun.”
Devlin advocates for beginner classes and seminars for skateboarders of all levels, and he foresees more of these learning opportunities on the horizon. Additionally, those interested in learning the ins and
outs of skateboarding and scheduling private lessons can find information online.
Good for Business
With the appeal of a new skate park and the increased interest in non-motorized wheel sports and activities, Mooresville’s new skatepark means local enthusiasts won’t have to travel far to experience a first-rate skate park. On the flip side, the largest skateboard park in the Southeast will draw skateboarders from communities far and wide. Several companies have already shown interest in renting the skatepark for corporate events, and official vendors are being considered. The park will hold its first Skate Day Competition on June 21, with more competitive events on the horizon.
A Foundation with Family at its Core
If there’s one thing Robin Smith Salzman has learned across nearly two decades of philanthropic work in the Lake Norman area, it’s the stark and somewhat sobering truth that the work will never really be done.
“There will never be a shortage of need,” she says. It’s a fact that she and her husband, Jack Salzman, have come to terms with as supporters of a variety of local charities and advocacy groups since arriving in Cornelius almost 20 years ago. That’s when they established the Lake Norman Chrysler Dodge Jeep RAM car dealership just off the interstate at Exit 28, and not long after began to establish themselves as mainstays in the community for their charitable works.
Even after opening Gastonia Chrysler Dodge Jeep RAM nearly 10 years later, their good works continued, with an increased focus on local agencies and charities that supported the needs of women and children, as well as multiple animal advocacy groups. But as of mid-January this year, their mission as both successful business owners and charitable giving supporters changed. The couple sold both dealerships to Parks Automotive Group, in a transaction that
is believed to have set a record for the highest value Chrysler Dodge Jeep RAM dealership ever to trade hands.
“It was a great time to sell,” Robin says. It made sense economically, as market conditions were at an all-time high for the automotive industry which was coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic and making record-breaking sales. But it also made sense for the couple at a more basic level.
“It was a great time for us personally,” she says. We had just both hit our 60s … we can’t run as hard as we used to and we don’t really want to.” With eight grandchildren they enjoy spending time with in Florida and Texas, it freed them up to do just that. And it will free up Robin even more to focus on her passion for giving back to the communities that have been so good to them for years now.
The Salzman family has established Giving with Grace, a foundation with the primary goal of fulfilling grant requests and making donations to mostly Lake Norman and Gaston County area charities and community organizations. Robin will lead the foundation’sLori Helms photography courtesy Giving with Grace
efforts while Jack focuses on another entrepreneurial venture set to launch sometime in March. She’s looking forward to having more time on her hands to volunteer, while also making more connections with groups in need, exploring what those needs might be beyond financial ones and even connecting similar groups who may be able to support each other.
“They don’t have to be an island,” Robin says.
Establishing Giving with Grace was a family decision, arrived at during a vacation last summer with all 14 family members present – including the grandchildren who range in age from about five to 20 years old.
She says they decided to take a significant portion of the profits from the dealerships sale and put it into the foundation, so they now have a greater ability to give back to the communities where their businesses in Cornelius and Gastonia flourished.
Giving with Grace’s focus will remain true to the Salzman family’s efforts to assist animal advocacy groups such as Lake Norman Humane, and groups supporting women and children such as Hope House Foundation, Dove House Advocacy Center, the local chapter of Make-A-Wish and Pat’s Place Child Advocacy Center.
In the closing days of the dealership sale, Robin says she had one final business request of her husband.
“Can I have a van, please, to give away?” she asked Jack. Savvy enough to know when to say yes, a 2022 Ram ProMaster van was surrendered, outfitted with the Giving with Grace Foundation logo and awarded in January to the Gaston Low-Cost Spay/Neuter Clinic and Animal League of Gaston County as one of the foundation’s first charitable acts.
“I want to have the joy of giving away the money now,” she says, “and the joy of involving our children and ultimately our grandchildren in it through a family foundation.”
joy of giving away the money ...”
A Growing Community Moves Forward
Kim and Miles Atkins See a Bright Mooresville Futureby Becky Aijala
Back when Brawley School was a two-lane road, Kim and Miles Atkins moved to Mooresville, little realizing the explosive growth they would witness, or just how deeply involved they’d become in the community. Fast forward to the present and Miles has been in public service for 16 years — four as a Commissioner At Large, and nearly 12 as Mayor. Kim has been Executive Director of the Mooresville Downtown Commission (MDC) for more than 14 years. Mooresville’s growing population exceeds 55,000 as the town celebrates its 150th birthday.
Miles, originally from Tampa, and Kim, from Virginia, first met in the mid-90s, hired by the same company in Charlotte. A romance developed and they soon married, settling in Charlotte’s historic Elizabeth neighborhood. But when jobs and commutes shifted, they moved north to the lake, along with the first wave of Charlotteans.
“If you’re on that side of the highway, it’s easy to forget about the rest of the town,” says Miles, and for several years, they did, starting a family and living on the lake. But when a new, longer commute became untenable, Kim quit the corporate world and decided to go into business with her mother-in-law. They opened “The Garden Party,” a home decor and garden specialty store which became a popular destination shop, right in downtown Mooresville because, Kim says, “I wanted to be where there’s character and history.”
It then made sense to move closer to the business, so they traded lake living for a 1909 Queen Anne Victorian on Academy Street.
“We just started paying attention and getting involved,” Miles says. They attended town board meetings and Miles signed up for the Mooresville Citizens Academy course, volunteered at the museum, and served on the Preservation Commission. In 2007 he ran for Commissioner At Large and won. In 2008, when the recession hit hard, “The Garden Party” closed. But Kim had already become committed to revitalizing Main Street, and the MDC hired her as Executive Director.
For Kim, working with a slate of dedicated volunteers, it’s all about driving foot traffic to downtown and creating opportunities for small business owners. Thanks to her leadership, the town has an app, a website and 20,000 Facebook followers connecting folks with food, wine, music and art events throughout the year. Most recently, a Social District was created, allowing for participating businesses to sell adult beverages in to-go cups during certain hours, making it simpler for businesses wanting to create a special outdoor event.
“There’s a satisfaction in seeing ideas through,” Miles says, and he credits the board he was once part of and now leads as Mayor, for
being decisive and turning good ideas into “shovel ready” projects –that is, ready to start as soon as funding is secured. “It’s because of the board that we’ve gotten so many things accomplished. You have to keep stuffing the pipeline,” he says.
The year 2022 was big for projects materializing, many of which Miles recalls first being talked about 16 years ago. A west side library, a new police headquarters, another fire station, a new soccer field and a skatepark created with enthusiastic input from the citizens who use it – which incidentally is now the largest skatepark in the Southeast.
In addition, the town now boasts a newly renovated and profitable municipal golf course, including a clubhouse and “On the Nines” restaurant. Open to the public, it’s as appealing as some nearby private clubs.
What’s next for Mooresville? Miles and Kim agree that more growth is inevitable.
“But we can be as intentional as possible about it,” she says. Walkability, street-scaping and amenities like parks and events will be the focus. With Main Street as the anchor, Broad Street and Church Street will likely continue developing, with the hope of creating a corridor from downtown south to Merino Mill.
But, like the town board’s practices Miles says truly work, that is in the pipeline.Left to right: Daughter, Ann Atkins; Son, Liam Atkins; Kim Atkins; Granddaughter, Analeigh Atkins; Miles Atkins
‘Go Play Outside! ’by Lori Helms photography courtesy Chad Goodin Signature Homes
There’s a hidden gem of a neighborhood in Mooresville near the now bustling Langtree area. It’s probably one of many tucked away places that doesn’t get the billing it deserves because it doesn’t sit directly on Lake Norman waterfront, but Ronnie and Drema Bice knew they had a find on their hands when they were able to acquire a lot there in 2017. It was a 4.5-acre site that had sat undeveloped for decades, surrounded by homes built in the 1980s and 1990s, and when it finally came onto the market about four years ago, the Bices scooped it up.
It’s a property they were familiar with, as they once lived in the neighborhood (although on the other side of it). The property owner had always intended to pass it along to family, but when his plans changed and the “For Sale” sign went up, Ronnie and Drema saw the opportunity to finally build what their ever-expanding family would enjoy and made the leap.
And what that family would enjoy — and has since made frequent leaps into — is a luxury pool and hot tub combination surrounded by an expansive outdoor living space for themselves, their five children and eight grandchildren (soon to be nine).
Mooresville couple builds outdoor dream space for an ever-growing family
“You better build what you want,” Drema says, imitating her husband and laughing about the “law” he laid down, “because we’re not ever building again. This is it.”
Looking around at about 1,200 square feet of water, dining, cooking and lounging outdoor luxury, it’s fair to say that Drema more than met her husband’s challenge.
To achieve it, the Bices contracted with Mooresville builder Chad Goodin Signature Homes (who also specialize in high-end pool creations) and designer Joycelyn Armstrong of Armstrong Interiors, also located in Mooresville. Drema says she was going for a modern look, while trying to steer clear of the stark and sterile feeling a modern look can evoke by keeping warm tones and touches in the architecture and interior design.
The inside of the home is stunning in its own right. The master suite has a shower large enough to fit all the grandkids and then some, the massive kitchen island is capable of the same and the towering ceilings throughout provide a deceptively grandiose feel to a home that actually exudes warmth and is moderate in size.
But the centerpiece of it all — visible from every angle at the back of the house through enormous multi-panel stacking glass doors — is the outdoor space the Bices envisioned, and the vision brought to life by Chad Goodin and his team.
“The main focus of the house was the outdoor area because our family is so big, and we know that our grandkids love swimming and that’s great entertainment for them,” Drema says. The grandchildren range in age from three to 11, and between the enormous fenced-inTo help enjoy their luxury pool and hot tub area (below), Drema and Ronnie Bice have brought the inside outdoors with expansive cooking, dining and lounging areas. Above, decorative fire bowls and a large fire pit frame the infinity edge pool. Left, there is room for all eight grandchildren to take a break from water activities in the lounge area.
yard, the pool and hot tub, and the separate lounging, dining and outdoor cooking area for them to burn off their childhood energy, it is safe to say that these are eight grandchildren who sleep well at night during their visits.
Aside from the pool and the expansive outdoor deck space, the remainder of the area is covered by a beautifully stained tongue and groove ceiling that includes fans for the warmer weather and infrared heaters for when the fall and winter chill set in. There’s a lounging area with sofas, chairs, a large television and gas fireplace, a dining space that can accommodate the Bices’ large brood and an outdoor kitchen that includes a grill, stove and pizza oven wrapped by a stretch of bar space big enough for several hungry tummies to belly up to.
From start to finish, it was about a three-year project in the making, and one that Drema and Ronnie insist could not have gone more smoothly.
“We built this area because of the children,” Drema says, “and when we told Chad what we wanted and it started coming together, it was just unbelievable because he hit the nail on the head with everything. We could not have asked for anything more for this house.”
Along with martial arts, Shorey’s Taekwondo America teaches self-defense strategies and anti-bullying techniques.by Karel Bond Lucander | photography courtesy Shorey’s Taekwondo
When Caryn Thompson saw Shorey’s Taekwondo America’s Facebook post about a Bullying Prevention/Self Defense workshop, this area Girl Scout troop leader and mom reached out to them. Owners Marlene and Mike Shorey offer free anti-bullying workshops to everyone during the month of October. Thompson asked if they might provide an anti-bullying session for all area Girl Scouts and was blown away by their response.
“Because of the range of ages, they offered different levels of workshops on several Saturdays,” she says. “And the response from the girls was really high; all of the sessions were full, and we had to add more.”
“Bullying is a serious issue, and it needs to be stopped,” says Mike Shorey, who has practiced martial arts for 18 years. “One of every three is bullied. Bullying rarely gets physical, but when it does, I want them to know how to stand up for themselves. I want them to walk away knowing how to use their words and voice. And if a bully puts hands on them, how to get them off and make the bully understand this is not the person to bully.”
A certified C.O.B.R.A. self-defense instructor, Mike’s interest in combat arts began while he was a medic in the U.S. Air Force. This veteran now has one black belt in Taekwondo and another in an Indonesian form of Kung Fu. A manufacturing engineer at DRT Holdings by day, Mike and his family opened this business in 2021. Marlene handles the daily operations and their son, Jacob, along with Shreya Kolhe, are the other instructors.
During one recent anti-bullying session designed for senior Girl Scouts, 10 teens from Hopewell, Hough and other area high schools positioned themselves on the mat while Marlene quizzed them about steps to discourage bullies. She engaged them in a few exercises and reminded them of ways they can help stop bullying, including “not spreading gossip; we can all do our part to end that!” She prepared them for Mike, who pretended to be an assailant.
“I’m the bad guy, so look at me that way. You can’t control the bully’s
time, place and method, but you can be ready to act.” Approaching each girl, he demonstrated how they should step back, separate their feet into a wide stance, and bring up their hands. “Hold your shoulders back and project confidence. Look people in the eye; that will stop them 95% of the time.” If a bully continues, “Your superpower is your voice; raise it up to bring in help,” he says. If all that fails, Mike says it’s time to act.
“Action beats reaction. If a person doesn’t respond, if you can’t get away, you need to strike,” he says. “And if you need to strike, strike effectively to stop the bully.” Strikes include a poke in the eyes, heel of the palm to the nose, knees to the groin and a side kick to the knees. “The way you practice is the way you perform.” He advises them to practice often.
Emily Riera, a co-manager for the Girl Scouts Meck 1 Hornets’ Nest Council, says the Shorey’s program was a great opportunity for the girls to learn how to identify potential harmful situations and protect themselves if needed.
“They were taught how to use their voices to cause a distraction and deterrent, and how to position their bodies to help them break free from an attacker,” Riera says. “My 16-year-old daughter, Kat, said she felt ‘empowered and stronger’ after the class. My 8-year-old, Maddie, said, ‘the obstacle course was fun. I learned how to protect myself from different pretend bad guys, and what to do if someone tries to bully me.’”
“I can’t be more appreciative to the Shoreys for doing this,” says Thompson, who coordinated this opportunity. “When you have people in the community like the Shoreys, willing to give back and help our youth, that’s great.”
POSITIVE Internet Alternatives
LKN Summer Camps Offer a Better Choiceby Tony Ricciardelli
With summer just a few months away, it’s a good time to think about how our children are going to keep busy during several weeks away from school. Will they spend countless sedentary hours in front of the television, or will they remain continually glued to the internet — texting, watching videos, playing video games? A change of habit and a change of scenery is most likely due and there are better options, one being summer camp.
Summer camp programs in the Lake Norman region are abundantly available to children and teens through local parks and recreation departments, YMCAs and educational institutions. They provide a healthy means to experience nature and the outdoors while encouraging children to challenge themselves in a fun, supportive, supervised learning environment. Summer camps promote camara-
derie and mental and physical health in an environment than can’t be duplicated within school walls. The rewards are evident and the memories long lasting. However, summer camp needn’t be all about the outdoors; there are other choices.
In addition to day camps and away camps advocating outdoor-based programs through a variety of practical skills and physical activities, there are camps offering opportunities for children to explore specific interests including the arts, science, community involvement, culinary and other niche categories that can be further explored online. What does this coming summer have in store for your child? How about a positive, meaningful experience filled with challenge and self-improvement? Explore the many summer camp options available throughout the Lake Norman community.
$80 MEMBERS $100 NON MEMBERS MEMBERS $160/WEEK NON MEMBERS $180/WEEK SIGN UP & INFORMATON 980-444-2280
A Remembrance for Life and Humanity
American Legion Post 321 Commemorates Four Chaplainsby Ricciardelli
Seems these days we’re too often caught up in the chaos and negativity that surround us. The availability of 24-hour, minute-to-minute news doesn’t help; negative narratives and disturbing images don’t lead to peace of mind and a positive outlook. Sometimes, however, a good dose of history can be a remedy. The kind of history that reminds us we’re capable of embracing altruism and humanity, behavior that can humble us, change adverse attitudes and wash away — if only temporarily — the things that weigh on us every day.
Last month, the American Legion Post 321 in Huntersville held a ceremony commemorating four World War II servicemen of different backgrounds and breeding who willingly chose to sacrifice their lives to save others.
On February 3, 1943, United States Army Transport SS Dorchester carved the chilled waters off Greenland. Four chaplains were on board: John P. Washington, a Catholic priest; Alexander D. Goode, a Jewish rabbi, and George L. Fox and Clark V. Poling, two Protestant ministers. Joe Reale, Post 321 Division and Department (State) Oratorical Chairman summarized their story.
“All aboard the ship that night had been ordered to sleep in their life vests but, with tight quarters and little air, most soldiers slept without them. As 900 servicemen onboard were sleeping, the transport was torpedoed. The ship was sinking fast, and the four chaplains realized
that the troops were in trouble, so they gave up their life vests to four young soldiers. The last anyone remembers of seeing these four was that they were standing in locked arms, praying as the ship went down.” Six hundred men perished while the now renowned “Four Chaplains” saved more than 200.
American Legion Post 321 commemorated these individuals at their February meeting. Chaplain Dennis Robitaille provided an opening prayer, after which four Post 321 officials representing the four chaplains, read short biographies of the servicemen, then presented life vests to four JROTC students from Hopewell High School including Sergeant Morgan Guissari and Major Sergeant Megan Sherrill (sophomores), Battalion Commander Jack Kish and Battalion Executive Officer Syrena Peterson (seniors). After the moving tribute to these brave men, a round of God Bless America was sung by all. Chaplain Robitaille closed the ceremony with a benediction, after which participant proclamations were given to the four students.
“I hope these young people carry tonight’s sentiment back to their generation,” said Post 321 Commander Frank Christmas. “It’s important to know that freedom is not free.” Christmas said that the Four Chaplains Ceremony will be repeated in the future.
Most notably, the four students demonstrated utmost respect and reverence throughout the ceremony. Their presence was comforting, fitting and hopeful; their focus and self-assurance was a testament to
their discipline and JROTC experience. Each of their future goals include serving in the military in professions where they can better the lives of others. All of them agree that leadership skills and growing self-confidence has allowed them to mature in a positive way.
“I’m able to lead and I’m more outgoing and confident,” says Peterson. “I have a positive outlook on life and my actions positively affect others.” Peterson is the best JROTC marksman at Hopewell High School.
After the remembrance, the JROTC students were asked for their thoughts.
• Sergeant Morgan Guissari: “Their story is beautifully sad. It’s an inspirational story of people sacrificing their lives for others.”
• Major Sergeant Megan Sherrill: “This was a positive way to honor those who died serving our country.”
• Battalion Commander Jack Kish: “This was an emotionally patriotic experience. I feel for those who lost their lives serving others. This was an inspiring tribute.”
• Battalion Executive Officer Syrena Peterson: “This ceremony makes me want to serve more, to save lives.”
There is a shrine in Philadelphia welcoming people of all colors and religious faiths. The Chapel of Four Chaplains is also a memorial to the four servicemen who freely gave their lives in the cold waters off Greenland on February 3, 1943. Chiseled into the chapel’s stone are these words:
Chapel of Four Chaplains
An Interfaith Shrine
Here is a Sanctuary of Brotherhood
Let it Never be Violated
A Man and His
I Knew I Would Use Metaphors One Dayby Mickey Dunaway
Is there a metaphor appropriate to the aches and ills that attack us when we reach 60 or thereabouts? I was already thinking in that direction when a recent outpatient appointment turned into a four-day hospital visit. That visit convinced me that I was, for sure, on to something.
Clearly, at a certain age, we humans begin to fall apart, and the process is so like what boat owners experience as their crafts deteriorate from trophy to “what the hell happened” that it cannot be ignored. So, I won’t.
So, let me see if I can improve this column with a little levity-based wisdom with two aphorisms about boats and two about the human condition over 60.
• How does one define a boat? A boat is a hole in the water, surrounded by fiberglass, into which one pours money.
• Do you know what one calls a gathering of three folks over 60? An organ recital.
• What are the two happiest days in a boat owner’s life? The day he buys the boat and the day he sells it.
• What does a patient call payment for a physician’s services? A boat payment.
I grew up fishing with my family on the Escatawpa River, which defines the southern portion of the Alabama-Mississippi border. My daddy owned an old 14-foot wooden skiff with a 7.5-horsepower cantankerous outboard on its transom, but he would beam with pride every time it cranked. Such has been my joy each time I brought home a new boat — five in my boating and fishing lifetime. Every new boat owner radiates indescribable joy when that new boat sits proudly in his driveway for the first time.
All details needed to be minded are yet to be made clear to the new boat owner at purchase. A boat is not just the hull and perhaps some oars and lifejackets. There is a motor to be tuned. There are seats split by the sun to be replaced. The steering wheel is long-lasting — not so are the cables that connect it to the motor. If there is a motor, there is usually a battery for all except the smallest boats — multiple
batteries if this motor is equipped with a trolling motor for slowly fishing the banks in the mist of an early morning.
And, of course, there is the trailer, the first part of the entire package to experience rust and corrosion. Likewise for the trailer lights and wiring, trailer axle, wheels and wheel bearings, and at least two tires and a spare.
I have owned and loved five new boats, trailers and motors, and while they performed admirably early in their lives, every boat grew old and required fixing with most costs from out-of-warranty work.
Remember the hole in the water into which you pour money? It was no joke.
As sure as the fisherman will go fishing countless more times than he will come home with fish, there will come a time when every boat owner realizes there is more joy in selling his boat than there is in keeping it any longer. However, someday in the future — for me, it was four days — he will forget all the problems. A slight twitching will begin somewhere deep in his temporal lobes, developing into a full-on desire for another boat. Since he cannot remember pain, he will buy another new boat and repeat the process again. Only the Almighty knows why.
Once I reached my mid-60s, it finally dawned on me that I would see a specialty physician for my eyes, ears, knees, teeth, skin, blood pressure and blood sugar, among other common ailments, every week. As such, I’ve arrived at a few painfully true metaphors:
• The miraculous human body is equaled by a new boat.
• The number of things that go wrong with a boat is at least equaled by our body.
• Current pain levels do not affect our ability to long for the good old days when our body and boats worked perfectly … until they didn’t.
• The cost of repair of body and boats are roughly the same.
On the positive side, medicine continues to get better and better. Otherwise, my motor would have quit on me in the middle of the lake long ago!
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
“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
Cornelius, Mooresville, Denver www.Rivaderm.com
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
Elaine Sunderlin, MD
170 Medical Park Road, Floor 3
Mooresville, NC 28117
PHC – Nabors Family Medicine
Emily Nabors, MD
142 Professional Park Drive
Mooresville, NC 28117
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
Laila Menon, MD
Gabrielle Miller, NP
170 Medical Park Road, Floor 3
Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-664-9506
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
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
PHC – Pain & Spine Center
Harsh Govil, MD, MPH
James Murphy, MD
April Hatfield, FNP-C
359 Williamson Road
Mooresville, NC 28117 • 704-235-1829
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
Third 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 First Party Funded Special Needs Trust. This article, which will be the last in the series, will briefly review a Third Party Funded Special Needs Trust.
A Third Party SNT is formed when a third party (parent, grandparent, friend, etc.) wants to provide for an individual with special needs and they do not want it to affect their government benefits or have a state Medicaid payback provision. The third party will use their own resources to fund this Third Party SNT, while they are still living or at their death.
Key characteristics of a Third Party SNT include (1) the SNT is set up by a third party (Grantor) for the benefit of an individual who is elderly or has special needs and is currently receiving or may receive in the future Medicaid or other SSI; (2) the SNT becomes irrevocable at the Grantor’s death; (3) there is no
age requirement for the beneficiary; and (4) there is no state agency payback provision. It is important that the Third Party SNT is set up as a separate document during the Grantor’s life or is within a Grantor’s Will or Trust that will become effective at the Grantor’s death. If you are thinking of leaving a beneficiary who has special needs in your estate planning documents, it is important to speak to an experienced special needs planning attorney about this particular language.
Danielle Feller is our 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 www.DalyMillsEstatePlanning.com.Danielle Feller
Protecting Your Power of Attorney with a Trust
Adurable power of attorney allows you to appoint someone you trust to handle financial and legal matters if you become incapacitated. We are all at risk of incapacity from illness or injury, whether temporary or permanent, and the risk increases as we get older. Without someone in place to handle legal and financial matters, bills go unpaid, contracts can’t be signed, homes can’t be refinanced, leases can’t be terminated and investments go unmonitored. The remedy of seeking court-appointed guardianship is expensive, time consuming and stressful. It’s best to pick someone you trust to handle your affairs in the event you are unable to do so yourself.
Unfortunately, having a power of attorney may not always be enough. Financial institutions often will not honor older powers of attorney and agents sometimes don’t step in until it’s too late. Fortunately, there are ways to avoid this institutional intransigence:
• Refresh your documents periodically. Financial institutions are more accepting of newer documents. Consider executing new durable powers of attorney every five years.
• Create a revocable trust. Financial institutions seem to accept revocable trusts more readily than durable powers of attorney. Revocable trusts have the added advantage that you can appoint a co-trustee to serve with you, so that if you become incapacitated, the co-trustee can step in and act.
A Trust Also Provides Financial Protection
As we age, we become increasingly susceptible to making financial mistakes and falling victim to scammers. A co-trustee on
a revocable trust may not take an active role, but they can monitor the accounts to make sure nothing untoward occurs. Furthermore, the co-trustee can step in immediately if necessary.
In contrast, an agent under a durable power of attorney must present credentials to the financial institutions and go through the institution’s vetting procedure, delaying access to accounts and prohibiting the agent from protecting the accounts.
Revocable trusts often work better than durable powers of attorney. However, trusts only control the accounts actually held by them. So, for the trust to work, you must retitle your accounts into your trust.
It is still important to appoint a durable power of attorney. Your trust only governs assets that are titled in the name of the trust. Your agent under your durable power of attorney can also handle legal matters on your behalf, such as signing your income tax returns.
Dine + Wine
Eating, drinking, cooking and funPhotography by Lisa Crates
A French region definitely punching above its weightby Trevor Burton
It’s not surprising that winemaking goes back a long way in the Languedoc region of southern France. It is right on the Mediterranean Sea, the “turnpike” of trade and commerce in ancient times. Languedoc’s vineyard history dates to the 5th century BC when Greeks introduced vines to the area. Early sailors and some of their buddies planted vineyards along the coast there, near the city of Narbonne. These are some of the oldest planted vineyards in France. This is the birthplace of all those famous (and expensive) French wines. For centuries, Languedoc had a reputation for producing high quality wine. In 14th century Paris, wines from the region were prescribed in hospitals for their “healing powers.”
Then came the Industrial Age, and it all fell apart. Quantity won over quality. Production in the region shifted toward mass-produced “le gros rouge” — cheap red wine that satisfied France’s growing work force. The use of highly prolific grape varieties produced high yields and thin wines. At that time, Languedoc produced the largest volume of table wine in France, yielding up to a massive 12,000 liters per hectare — normal yields for quality wines are 5,000 liters per hectare.
Today, that’s changed on nearly every level; quality is making a come-back. Winemakers who couldn’t afford the eye-watering prices of France’s other, more prestigious regions were attracted by Languedoc’s lower land prices. And, interestingly, based on recent figures, Languedoc is home to 36 percent of all French organic vineyards — that’s seven percent of global organic vineyards. It also has the highest percentage of certified organic grape growers in France. There’s a commitment to producing quality wines and that’s what makes them well worth exploring.
Languedoc’s red wines are predominantly blends made with Grenache, Syrah, Carignan, Mourvèdre, and Cinsault. Their flavor profile is dominated by red fruit and spices. Undergrowth (garrigue in French) that is typical of the region plays a big part, and it comes through in the wines. Garrigue contains rosemary, thyme, sage, lavender and juniper — earthy, rustic wines that are right up my alley.
Languedoc has many subregions. Wines from a couple of them can be easily found around our lake. One is the subregion of Minervois. It’s a little bit inland, 25 miles, from the Mediterranean Sea. Being in foothills, it’s at a slightly elevated altitude. All this is important
because, along with Mediterranean breezes, it adds a little coolness to vineyards. That results in wines where intensity and tannins are nicely balanced. The coolness is needed. This area gets an abundance of sunshine, more than most other parts of France.
In Minervois, to reduce cost, grapes used to be crushed while they were still on their stems. In search of higher quality, de-stemming is increasingly being used to reduce tannin levels in the wines. Minervois reds are generally aged for at least one year before release. In that search for more quality, barrel maturation is becoming more common. An aside but an indication of the wine heritage of the region, Minervois takes its name from the village of Minerve. The village itself is named after the Greek goddess Minerva. A blast from the vinous past.
Languedoc is producing lots of increasingly good quality wines. And, because of their recent history, they carry a price that makes them a terrific value. Languedoc’s wines are definitely worthy of your attention. Ask your local wine merchant about the region. Your taste buds will be grateful, and so will your wallet.
A Wee Bit
of Irish Traditionby Kathy Dicken
Irish Corned Beef Pasties
Irish corned beef is a classic meal for good reason. It’s so easy to cook in your slow cooker, and it delivers a tender and flavorful piece of meat every time. Potatoes and cabbage cook beautifully together with the beef, making a complete dinner that cooks itself! But if you want to capture that corned beef goodness as part of your St. Patrick’s Day celebration, simply make Irish Corned Beef Pasties!
If you are not familiar, a pasty (rhymes with FAST-EE) is a handheld pie filled with cooked meat and vegetables that has long been a popular Irish pub food. Store bought pie crusts are the secret ingredient — just shred the beef, roll out the crust, stuff and bake!
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 8 hours 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 www.thetastybits.com or on Instagram @thetastybits.
1 - 3 lb. corned beef brisket, rinsed and patted dry (keep spice packet)
1 large sweet onion, quartered
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 bay leaf
1 - 11.2 oz. Guinness beer or similar
3 cups beef broth
1 head of cabbage, cored and quartered
1 lb. baby red potatoes, cubed small
1 pkg. of 2 refrigerated pie crusts
1 egg, beaten
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup Dijon mustard
1/4 cup honey
1/8 cup prepared horseradish, drained
Salt and pepper to taste
Instructions: Spray the bottom of your slow cooker with cooking spray. To each quartered onion piece, stick in 2 whole cloves, then place your corned beef, fat side down, on top of the onion in the slow cooker. Top with garlic cloves, bay leaf, spice packet, beer and beef broth and slow cook on low for 8 hours.
When there is 1 hour left, add cubed baby potatoes and cabbage and allow to cook for 1 more hour. Meanwhile, in a medium size bowl, whisk all the sauce ingredients together and set aside. After 8 hours, remove the brisket to a cutting board to cool for a few minutes. Remove potato cubes to a large bowl, and preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Shred beef with 2 forks and reserve half of the beef for another use. Mix the shredded beef and a handful of chopped cabbage into the large bowl with the potatoes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Roll out the pie crusts into a 12” wide rectangles on a floured work surface and cut into 6 rectangles. Add about 2 tablespoons of filling on 3 of the rectangles, brush the edges of each rectangle with egg wash, stretch the 3 remaining rectangles over the filling, fold up the edges and pinch together. Repeat with the second pie crust.
Place each pastry on a parchment lined sheet pan and brush top of each with egg wash. Finally, cut a few small slits in the top of each crust with a knife and bake for 12 minutes or until the crust is golden brown. Serve with the horseradish sauce and enjoy!
Note: The remaining cooked cabbage, potatoes and corned beef make the perfect simple meal. Use the remaining shredded beef to make delicious Reuben sandwiches.
Redefining Gooey & Chewy
Red’s Scratch Made Bake Shop Raises the Barby Tony Ricciardelli photography by Lisa Crates
Who doesn’t love a scratch made cookie? Not the kind of pre-packaged supermarket brand or the kind made at home from boxed ingredients but, instead, a gooey, chewy scratch made cookie — sweet, moist, of perfect texture and generous proportion. How can one refuse a cookie like that? The cookies offered at Red’s Scratch Made Bake Shop in Mooresville will pose a tough challenge to your cookie resistance. Red’s cookies are big and scrumptious; a treat for the senses, a customer’s delight, a local delicacy.
Without any formal culinary training, Red’s owner, Robin Goodrich, learned to bake cookies alongside her mom. She began experimenting with recipes and baking processes resulting in “big chunky cookies.” Word of mouth endorsements and first-hand tasting by friends and family were encouraging. Her first real chance to showcase her cookies happened in 2018 when she was invited to sell her creations at the Southern Charm at the Farm, a bi-annual event held at Tanglewood Park in Clemmons, North Carolina,
which boasts itself as the “largest artisan festival in the Southeast.” The effort proved successful with Goodrich selling her entire lot of 500 cookies. From there, she was invited to sell her cookies at local breweries.
“Every time I participated in an event, I sold out,” says Goodrich, “and that meant cooking more and more cookies. At that time, I had no intention of opening a bakery.” Soon, however, realizing that a profitable venture was possible, she started her business with backing from her entrepreneur boyfriend.
With the demand for her cookies increasing, so did the learning curve. Goodrich tested hundreds of recipes and combinations of ingredients and learned to translate smaller kitchen recipes into the larger scale operation. She admits to being pretty good at the math conversions; however, she soon realized that humidity levels and volume affect measurement.
“Converting small-batch cookie recipes to exponentially larger batches of dozens of hundreds of cookies often doesn’t hold true to the math,” says Goodrich. “I kept charts and records of all of my trials and recalculations for one year until I finally got it right.” The “Cookie Alchemist” would be an appropriate title for Goodrich. “After high school, I went to hairdressing school. I worked at a salon for a few years, then I tried my hand at an accounts receivable position. Neither profession suited me in terms of job satisfaction and the possibility of writing my own ticket,” says Goodrich. “This career choice allows me to maintain a good balance between work and my private life. I’m where I want to be.”
In December 2019, Red’s moved into its current location. The building previously housed a restaurant, which required extensive updating and renovations before it was transformed into a bakery. During the pandemic, the business opted for a partial shutdown, offering customer pickup and online transactions.
“The pandemic allowed us to catch our breath,” she says. “We resumed full operation during the summer of 2020.”
Red’s enjoys a thriving business and loyal customers. There is often a line at the bakery’s entrance prior to opening. The bakery’s six employees serve a steady flow of patrons every shift, selling hundreds of pieces of baked goods on a busy day. Goodrich notes that December is exceptionally demanding. Last year, Red’s shipped thousands of cookies across the country. These seasonal transactions are over and above daily sales.
Red’s offers a variety of specialty cookies that change weekly, including Caramel Brownie Chunk, S’mores, Nutty Buddy, Lemon Meringue Pie and Red Velvet Cheesecake. Seasonal options include blueberry-lemon-poppyseed, Caribbean Coconut and Spiced Caramel Apple. Red’s also bakes brownies and bars. During summer months, Red’s offers a variety of its own soft serve ice cream made on the premises. A menu of daily flavors can be found on Red’s Facebook and Instagram pages.
We’re Here For You
Funeral arrangements are a deeply personal choice. Pre planning provides you with the time needed to make practical, detailed, decisions that reflect your standards, lifestyle, taste and budget while giving your loved ones peace of mind.
Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day Lake Normancompiled by Bek Mitchell-Kidd
You’re not imagining things … it’s not just the Irish around here who are lucky come St. Patrick’s Day. With the broad range of celebrations happening mid-month around the lake, you too can experience the luck of the Irish at a variety of locales on March 17 and beyond. Here’s just a sampling:
Luck of the Village (March 17): Calling all lassies, lads and little leprechauns! Enjoy an evening of live music, dancing, festive gear and local craft beer. Free admission, 6-9 p.m. Parking is available in all parking decks and surface lots. Valet is available in front of the Concierge. Birkdale Village, 8712 Lindholm Drive, Huntersville, www.birkdalevillage.net.
Three-Day Celebration at Primal Brewery (March 17-19): Enjoy a festive weekend full of green beer, live music, food trucks, games and more. Don’t forget to wear your favorite green outfit! Friday and Saturday noon-11 p.m., Sunday noon-8 p.m. Primal Brewery, 16432 Old Statesville Road, Huntersville, www.primalbrewery.com.
St. Patrick’s Day Celebration at The Harp & Crown (March 17): Start the celebration early with a day full of Irish dancers, bagpipes, special menu items and giveaways; all within the most festive atmosphere in the land. 10 a.m.-close. The Harp & Crown, 19930 W. Catawba Ave., Cornelius, www.theharpandcrown.com.
St. Paddy’s Weekend Celebration (March 17-18): Head over to the Lake Norman Social District in Cornelius for a weekend of food, fun and drinks plus live music, games, giveaways and more. Stroll between Old Town Public House and Thigs Cocktail Bar to enjoy the festivities. Friday, 3 p.m.-midnight; Saturday, noon-midnight. Lake Norman Social District, Catawba Avenue in downtown Cornelius, www.facebook.com/lknsocialdistrict.
St. Patrick’s Day to Night Party (March 17): Come find the end of the rainbow this St. Patrick’s Day night! DJ Knes Supreme will provide the Irish-inspired soundtrack to an evening of fun with friends and lucky drink specials. 8 p.m.-midnight. The Hideaway LKN, 20910 Torrence Chapel Road, Cornelius, www.thehideawaylkn.com.
St. Patrick’s Day at King Canary (March 17): Relax with a pint of Irish Dry Stout or Irish Red on nitro while enjoying live music at the brewery. Don’t forget to ask your friendly bartender to turn your beer green! Open 2-11 p.m., King Canary Brewing, 562 Williamson Road, Mooresville, www.kingcanarybrewery.com.
Will Your Business be Named CURRENTS’ 2023 Best of Lake Norman?
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 www.surveymonkey.com/r/BOTL2023.
• 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!
And nominate your favorites!
Only one vote per I.P. address. Employees of Currents Magazine and any of its affiliates do not qualify to vote.