Lake Norman Currents Magazine

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margarita metaphor

Nature-inspired art

APRIL 2021


with a purpose




Total Company Sales Volume 2020


Increase in Closed Sales Volume YOY (Lake Norman Region)


885,995 Average Sales Price (Lake Norman Region)


Above Market Average Sales Price (Lake Norman Region)

358 Beaten Path Road | Mooresville, North Carolina |

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

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

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

Publisher MacAdam Smith

Get Refreshed When I was 12, I moved from Central Texas to the majestic Blue Ridge Mountains of western North Carolina, where I spent much of my time outdoors, hiking on nearby trails, taking long drives on the parkway with my parents, eating berries straight off the bushes the bloomed in our yard and playing in the icy rivers. I’ve come to realize nature has always been a big part of my life, even if I consider myself a homebody who probably spends too much time indoors reading, working or simply trying to cover off all the household chores.

Advertising Director Sharon Simpson

Advertising Sales Executives

Carole Lambert

Beth Packard

It’s hard to believe it’s been a year since we put out our last outdoor living-themed issue. I went back and looked at the words I shared then, where I mentioned the onset of a global pandemic was causing schools and businesses to be shut down and large-scale events to be cancelled right as we went to press. I concluded with the words:

Trisha Robinson

I personally can’t help but be grateful for a little extra time to reflect and think about all the things I do have right now rather than the things I don’t have (or the places I can’t go) right now. We live in a beautiful community that allows us to breathe in fresh air and play in our backyards. Now is the time to truly appreciate the outdoor living that surrounds us.

Event Coordinator

The naturalist and philosopher Henry David Thoreau once said: “We can never have enough of nature. We must be refreshed by the sight of inexhaustible vigor, vast and Titanic features, the sea-coast with its wrecks, the wilderness with its living and its decaying trees, the thunder cloud, and the rain which lasts three weeks and produces freshets. We need to witness our own limits transgressed, and some life pasturing freely where we never wander.”

Social Media Specialist

I’m hopeful for our future. I’m grateful for the health and well being of my friends and loved ones. I’m excited to see events slowly being planned again and can see how much our community has grown stronger through all the challenges of this pandemic. I feel like the last year and all we’ve lived through has helped me reset in ways I probably needed but couldn’t manage on my own. I revisited my love of the mountains and the beaches in my adopted state and realized how much of our country I still have left to see. I hope others have been able to experience the same type of awakening along with the challenges we’ve endured. Editor

Alison Smith

Lauren Platts

Design & Production idesign2, inc

Contributing Writers Jen Campbell Boles Trevor Burton Sara Coleman Jill Dahan Vanessa Infanzon Grace Kennedy Bek Mitchell-Kidd Karel Bond Lucander Martin Rose Mike Savicki Allie Spencer Lara Tumer

Contributing Photographers Jon Beyerle Jamie Cowles Lisa Crates Gayle Shomer





About the Cover: See page 36 for local author Adiba Barney’s philosophy on cactuses.




LAKE SPACES How we live at the lake

48 Dwellings

A historic Huntersville home gets a colorful transformation.


Movers, shakers and more at the lake


The Village of Lake Norman Facebook group

18 For the Long Run FeedNC

FEATURES In Every Issue

26 Thoughts from the Man Cave

Wood turner Chuck D’Arezzo

36 Navigators

Adiba Barney makes margaritas out of the “cactuses” in her life

40 Game On

ACEing Autism in Mooresville connects kids with tennis


Find your zen outdoors at The Meditation Room


Bet You Didn’t Know Rock Springs Camp Meeting in Denver


New nonprofit focuses on healing trauma and abuse


We’re Just Crazy About Indoor water fountains at Knotty and Board Interiors

IN THIS ISSUE 23 Trends + Style

30 Bucket List Vacations Yellowstone National Park

DINE + WINE Eating, drinking, cooking and fun

63 Your Best Life

Tips for combatting spring allergies

56 Wine Time

Pasta perfection at Pomodoro’s

58 On Tap

The Cheers! Trail in Hendersonville

68 Renee Wants to Know


Get ready for for spring

A beginner’s guide to disc golf


60 In The Kitchen

Melt-in-your-mouth tiramasu

62 Nibbles + Bites

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

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

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


Indian street food at Masala Mastee

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. | APRIL 2021



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

It Takes A Village Facebook group celebrates children and supports families by Allie Spencer photography by Jamie Cowles Above and left: The Village of Lake Norman Facebook group arranges a variety of experiences for children and their caregivers. Right: Stacee Ash.

Two years ago, Stacee Ash, a Huntersville resident and caregiver for two young girls in the Lake Norman area, founded the Facebook group “The Village” of Lake Norman. Inspired by her own childhood in upstate New York, she believed everyone deserves a village to call their own. At the time, she had been exchanging numbers and planning meet ups to keep the children she cared for engaged in learning. Her “unofficial” village was growing so she started the group to help keep things organized.

With a background in child development and decades of experience, Ash wanted to create a supportive community inspired by the Reggio Emilia philosophy of early childhood.

“I decided to create the Facebook page and believed that I might get maybe 100 people. This happened in the first few days,” says Ash. Through word of mouth, the group is now 1,800+ members strong.

A mom of one grown son herself, Ash says the group is open to anyone taking care of young children--no reservations required. She posts a weekly schedule with different meet up locations and activities for each day, and encourages members of the group to show up and get involved. In addition to visiting local parks, playgrounds and nature trails, “The Village” supports local businesses with outings to Sweetwater Farms, Rescue Ranch, Zootastic, Our Kids Place of Lake Norman and Good Karma Alpacas.

Ash says her mission when she created “The Village,” was inspired by her own upbringing. Her mother struggled with raising Ash, a child conceived from a sexual assault while her husband was on active military duty. Her husband vowed to raise Ash as his own biological child, despite her being biracial. Ash was raised in a loving transracial family until the age of 11. Then she was welcomed and raised by a biracial family until adulthood. “It truly takes a village to raise a child, and I am living and loving proof of it,” she says.

“I try to set up a variety of experiences for the children. Sometimes, I set up outdoor learning provocations or other times the environment is the provocation. Either way, the community environment becomes the child’s classroom. The adults are active participants and our passion for the children bond us together.”

The quick organic growth of the group online is a testament not only to Ash’s passion for children, but also the support the group provides to caregivers, parents and grandparents. “It makes my heart happy watching the beautiful friendships develop, giving people support that care for children and contributing to making the community better and stronger,” Ash says. | APRIL 2021


CHANNEL MARKERS - for the long run

Top: FeedNC Executive Director Lara Ingram and Culinary Director Andrew Hughes with a volunteer. Middle: Andrew Hughes with a participant in the Culinary Job Training Program. Below: Ingram and Program Director Brittany Holbert and Program Coordinator Brianna Rucker.

More Than a Meal

FeedNC innovates to serve the changing needs of community Like the area that surrounds it, FeedNC has grown and changed in many ways since its founding three decades ago. It began as the Mooresville Soup Kitchen in 1987, and changed its name to FeedNC early last year after a lengthy quest to find out how the community’s needs have changed over the years and how the organization can best meet those needs. “We took a journey of listening and asking lots of questions,” says FeedNC Executive Director Lara Ingram. “People were incredibly receptive, understanding it would lead to better services.” Ingram and her team discovered that being called a soup kitchen was discouraging working people from using their services. There was a perception that a soup kitchen is only for people experiencing homelessness, while 95 percent of those who need FeedNC are employed but still experience food insecurity. The name FeedNC speaks to the four main ingredients in the organization’s mission: Food, Education, Essentials, and Dignity.


FeedNC provides breakfast from 8-9 a.m. and lunch from noon-1 p.m. The organization served more than 17,000 hot meals in 2020. Through the Food Rescuer program, local restaurants and supermarkets provide food that would otherwise be thrown away, resulting in decreased food waste and increased services for FeedNC’s clients. 18


by Grace Kennedy photography by Lisa Crates


FeedNC believes it takes more than a meal to end hunger. To help clients become financially independent, the Culinary Job Training Program provides 12 weeks of hands-on field training and life skills classes, followed by job placement assistance. “We know going forward, especially coming out of a pandemic, that people need workforce skills and a livable wage,” says Ingram.


These days, people working one or even two jobs may not be able to pay rent, utilities, medical bills, and put food on the table. The FeedNC Pantry allows people to pay their rent and bills without going hungry. The Pantry is available by appointment Tuesday through Thursday.


“We put this word in our name on purpose,” says Ingram. “When people are treated with respect and the process is dignified, they can imagine a different path forward. There is an element of hope in dignity.” FeedNC is holding its largest fundraiser of the year April 1 through May 31. Be a Hunger Hero by donating, volunteering, and spreading the word about the many ways FeedNC is changing lives. Donate and learn more at



and the Great Outdoors

The Meditation Room offers yoga and meditation on two-acre property It seems as though now more than ever, everyone could use some meditation in their lives—a practice that grounds you in the present moment. The Meditation Room has been around since 2016 but expanded from a tiny one room studio to a two-acre property in 2020, allowing for a true retreat-like experience that simply wasn’t attainable before. Owner and instructor, Jessica Bowles, initially opened The Meditation Room over five years ago. While the Lake Norman area hosted several yoga studios, she planned to set her practice apart by focusing on more than just postures. Even though they offer yoga, they’re so much more than just a yoga studio. After attending several yoga retreats over the years, Bowles had the dream of a large piece of land where she could offer the same type of inclusive experience. The property was secured in 2020—a former garden center that provided an old house on a gorgeous property. Opening during the height of the pandemic didn’t halt the business from moving forward. Bowles used their new land to her advantage, hosting socially distanced yoga and meditation classes predominately outside until late October, when the weather became uncooperative.

by Lara Tumer photography by Megan McFadden

Her dream came to fruition, allowing students to “connect with the elements around them as they connect with the elements within them.” Beginning this month, classes will resume outside with an offering of meditation and yoga—both the study and practice. Classes in Astrology and Ayurveda will also be on the calendar. A large outdoor fire pit allows for moon gatherings on the new moon and full moon, something truly special and unique. Day retreats and series classes lasting several weeks are also being offered, allowing for more than a short drop-in class. Participants can also sip on delicious loose-leaf tea before or after practicing or take it to go. In addition to Bowles, The Meditation Room has a number of specially trained instructors who each bring something distinctive to the table. While all are trained in meditation, they each bring something unique to their practice whether that be knowledge in astrology, yoga, art, and more. “Each has a passion to share these practices have changed their life in so many ways.” The Meditation Room 16024 Davidson-Concord Road, Davidson | APRIL 2021


CHANNEL MARKERS - bet you didn’t know

“Tents” stay in families and pass down through generations. Photo credit: Tim Buchman Photographs, 1988-1998 (MC00583), Preservation North Carolina.

This group of camp meeting attendees in 1910 includes members of the Howard, Brotherton, Barker and Sherrill families. Photo credit: Courtesy of Lincoln County Historical Association.

Rock Springs Camp Meeting A gathering place for Denver families since 1830 Denver-area families have gathered each August since 1830 for worship and fellowship at Rock Springs Camp Meeting, one of the oldest continuously operating religious campgrounds in the United States. “Camp meeting is a homecoming for Denver,” says Matt Boles, Denver historian and author of the book Around Denver. People travel from across the country to attend. Many annual events, family reunions and high school class reunions are scheduled during this time.” The original attendees stayed for the week-long religious celebration in canvas tents or brush structures. Cooking over open fires, they attended religious services throughout the day and evening. “Tents” today are rustic cabins that stay within families, some passing down as many as seven generations. “Some families own three or more tents among siblings and pass those to their children,” Boles says. “Tents that are sold can bring $50,000 or more.” The Rock Springs Camp Meeting tradition dates back to 1794 when Daniel Asbury organized a Methodist circuit in the area. Early camp meetings were held at the site of nearby Rehobeth United Methodist 20


by Martin Rose

Church. The need for additional water supply to accommodate the growing crowds spurred the move to Denver in 1830. “There is a peace in knowing that year after year you can return to a place and participate in the same activity as your ancestors, even though the accommodations are rustic,” Boles says. “Some people that take their entire vacation to spend two weeks at camp meeting. It is a place that allows you to reset and recharge mentally, physically and spiritually. “Denver did not see an influx of growth until the late 1960s and ‘70s with the construction of Lake Norman,” Boles says. “So dating back to the Revolutionary War you had a core group of families like the Beattys, Sherrills, Mundys, Asburys, Sheltons, Thompsons, Littles, Sigmons, Brothertons and Howards that have carried on the camp meeting tradition. That shared tradition creates a tight-knit bond in the community that is Denver’s history.” Even if you do not own a tent, all are welcome. Bring a lawn chair and sit under the 200-year-old oak trees or the arbor built in the 1830s. Experience campground life by walking the grounds to take in the sights and sounds of Denver’s history..

Healed and Restored One woman’s painful journey helps others

by Sara Coleman

The Summer of 2020 became a pivotal time in the life of Elza Spaedy. A growing desire was forming in her heart to provide resources to young women in the Lake Norman area who need help working through personal trauma. Spaedy could not suppress this desire and knew something had to be done, and it could not wait. In July 2020, the idea of Healed and Restored was born and soon formed.

mind. Spaedy believes when you give women the means to deal with all aspects of their trauma— not only the physical—then true restoration begins. Programs will be offered from counseling, to gardening and cooking, to journaling, and prayer. The organization offers this under the care of a medical director who studies every case to determine the care needed for healing.

Spaedy’s personal experience are what make this vision so extraordinary. A survivor of abuse herself that occurred when she was 8 years old, she has been in the same shoes far too many young women have walked in. It took years for Spaedy to work through the pain. It was not until her mid-twenties she found resources with counseling, therapy, and an abundance of prayer that allowed her to work through the impact the abuse had on her life.

The eventual goal for Healed and Restored is to build a 10-bedroom home to house up to 20 young women. To do so, the organization will need a donation of 12 to 15 acres of land in the Charlotte-area and building supplies. The nonprofit is also launching a capital campaign and local ambassador program for grassroots, organic growth. Spaedy is confident the “need is so great, and the resources will be provided.”

Spaedy has now formed Healed and Restored, a local Christian non-profit organization aimed at working with women struggling with deep rooted, life-controlling issues. These issues range from selfharm, eating disorders, physical and mental abuse, to sexual abuse and sex-trafficking.

She has transformed from victim to survivor and is ready for young women throughout our area to experience freedom with healing and restoration. Spaedy wants each young woman to understand “it’s ok, you are going to become a survivor” and Healed and Restored is here to help these women begin this journey.

Still in its infancy, Healed and Restored is focused on offering a full, three-pronged approach to healing focusing on the soul, body, and

Providing More Than Beautiful Smiles

Visit to learn more about how you can help as a local ambassador or through a donation.

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Photography by Kristyn Keenan Photos


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Framing Art Gallery

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Event Venue Historic Downtown Mooresville 148 N. Main •

Soothing Indoor Water Fountains Bring a relaxing ambience into your home or work space with an indoor tabletop water fountain. The calming sound of water will soothe you, along with providing an aesthetically-pleasing piece of décor. Find indoor fountains ranging from $44 to $61 (for tiered ball indoor water fountains with pumps), pictured here, along with other home décor and furnishings, at Knotty and Board Interiors, 20700 North Main Street, Ste. 104, Cornelius,

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Décor [8]



for spring






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1: Tie Dyed Glazed Table 3. Organic Wood Bead Lamp $261.80 Chandelier $1500.00

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Modern Sophistication

Full Service Men’s Fine Clothing Boutique Clothing Choices from Italian & French Designers Johnston & Murphy Salesmen Sample Shoe Program Iredell County’s Tuxedo Rental Headquarters BEST OF THE LAKE


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Colors [7]




for spring [6]




[1] 1. Bristol Sofa in Nomad Snow

3. Jarin Coffee Table in Navy Faux Belgian Linen

2. Isla Cabinet in Natural Peeled Rattan

4. Ro Sham Beaux Frankie Malibu in Navy Agate Beads

All of these items can be purchased at:

5. Hillcrest Rug in Cobalt & Slate 6. Bixi Velvet Pillow 7. Ming Fret Velvet Pillow

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Lessons from the Lathe Chuck D’Arezzo creates beauty and meaning in his one-of-a-kind wood turnings and sculptures

Cornelius resident’s work has appeared in galleries all across the United States.

by Mike Savicki | photography courtesy of Chuck D’Arezzo

He has the hands of a surgeon—calm, steady, precise, and deliberate. His mind sees the possibility in a block of wood just like a painter envisions a dream on a white canvas. He is as much a craftsman as a tradesman, a thinker as much as a creator.

and cherishes the relationships he has formed alongside these artists, sculptors, writers, tapestry makers, architects, chefs, stained glass creators, and all-around art lovers. Living and working in Bailey’s Glen keeps him invigorated and is his family.

The process begins with an idea, a rough sketch. That’s how he has done it for more than 60 years. He sketches and draws nightly, sometimes it is a new design while other times it is a revision or modification. His mind is always moving.

D’Arezzo, now 82, grew up as a jewelry apprentice near his boyhood home in Cranston, Rhode Island. Both sets of his grandparents came from Italy, bringing the strong work ethics they passed down to their younger generations. He spent hours designing, shaping, and practicing in his mother’s basement so he could master the fine motor skills that he knew would keep him employed as a teen. While serving in the military out of high school, he valued the chances he had to discover and explore art works first in the Far East then across Europe while he worked on forward radar, missiles, and early computer technology. Images from The Louvre and galleries across Belgium became his mental keepsakes. He retired as a professor and dean after 34 years at Community College of Rhode Island (CCRI), helping to take it from a small, local institution to New England’s largest community college network. His efforts earned Emeritus recognition. And along the way, he discovered woodworking, turning, and sculpting while building a home in New Hampshire.

Then he selects the wood. The idea dictates the form. Oftentimes it might be a piece of otherwise forgotten maple or oak. A damaged or distressed section of a tree. For years he traveled with a chainsaw. Now he values wood that he finds or discovers, wood that is given to him. In each green sample he observes the size, the shape, the growth patterns, the age, the lines. The actual process then begins with green wood on a lathe. Very thin pieces. He gives himself three attempts, shining a light through as he removes an inch or less at a time. He watches how the wood behaves, how the light refracts, moves, and changes. Sometimes the wood behaves differently than even he imagines so he sets it aside and begins again with another. He turns and sculpts daily. Sometimes it is for just a couple hours, other times it is for much, much, much longer. An afternoon into an evening. Maybe longer. He rarely misses a day. Skillfully wielding tools, some as small as a dentist’s drill bit and others more than 100 years old passed down through generations, he has the patience, the care, the dedication, and the passion to turn otherwise forgotten blocks of wood into one-of-a-kind works of art. Bowls. Balls. Containers. Cylinders. Sculptures. Art pieces. A wooden umbrella. A freestanding Native American. For decades, Chuck D’Arezzo’s work appeared in galleries, first across New England in New Hampshire and Maine then along Virginia’s Blue Ridge. But, of late, since moving to Bailey’s Glen with his wife, Julia, seven years ago, he has found that sharing his work with many of his artisan neighbors and new friends brings more satisfaction and joy than a new gallery or guild might otherwise provide. He values 26


“If you have the opportunity to do something, do something,” D’Arezzo tells me as we sit together in his shop shortly before he is to begin an afternoon of turning. “We take the gifts that we are given, we make them ours, then we work to make something we can give to others.” And as he shows me the tools of his craft—the jeweler’s saw, the hammers, the chisels, the knives, even the drill bits—he adds, “I have memories in these tools every time I touch them. I think of the people, the places, the times, that have brought me to now and I realize how fortunate I am to be able to create. To me, we are all products of the lives we live and we owe it to those we love to make the most of it all. We shouldn’t take our talents for granted. We should do as much as we can.” There is a special beauty in Chuck D’Arezzo, not simply in his works but also in his mind, too. To see his work is special. To share his time is extraordinary.






for spring? [1]





All of these items can be purchased at:


1. Johnny Fly “Captain” 3. Oliver Thomas Tennis Sunglasses $135 Backpack, $199

5. Travis Mathew, Men’s 7. ESSEutESSE Nude Golf Shirt, $90 Fringe Sneaker, $385

2. Bonnie Boardman 4. Young Fabulous and earrings. Davidson, NC $72 Broke, Tia Top, $131

6. Johnnie O, Men’s Reyes Shorts, $98

8. Pistola Lennon Crop Boot Jean in fountain wash, $122

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Mooresville, NC 28117

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Bucket 30


pbell Boles Photo by Jen Cam


VACATIONS An itinerary for visiting Yellowstone National Park by Jen Campbell Boles

Drive around the Lake Norman area right now, and one thing is obvious—people are ready to be outside. After a year of being stuck at home, everyone is ready to be outdoors. This is also the trend with 2021 vacation planning, which is why trips to America’s National Parks are more popular than ever before. If you are thinking of visiting National Parks this year, Yellowstone should be at the top of your list. | APRIL 2021


Photos by Jen Campbell Boles

Expect to see plenty of wildlife and hydrothermal and geologic wonders in Yellowstone National Park, and opportunities for more sightseeing in Wyoming and Montana.

Getting there First, let’s talk logistics, should you fly or drive? Like with everything travel, the answer is “it depends.” Right now, it depends on your comfort level. Despite all of the studies that show flying during the pandemic is safe, many people are still hesitant. If you drive, plan on at least three days to get there if you only stop to sleep. However, there is so much to see along the way, I recommend driving only if you have weeks to spare. Bozeman, Mont. and Jackson Hole, Wyo. are the most popular airports for Yellowstone. Your gut reaction may be to fly into one location and out of the other. However, the drop fees for one-way rentals are expensive. Plus, Yellowstone is really a big loop so as long as you don’t mind a little backtracking, then you can fly in and out of either airport.

Millions of acres Yellowstone National Park is over 2.2 million acres! Thus, you cannot expect to visit the park in one day. For the sake of this 32


article, we will start our journey at the West entrance. It is, by far, the most popular entrance since it is closest to Old Faithful, possibly the most famous geyser in the world. Make sure to explore all of the geothermal sites in this part of the park including Norris Geyser and Grand Prismatic Spring, which must be seen from ground level and above to truly appreciate it. If you continue south along the loop, you’ll see the turn off to the South entrance where you will drive through Grand Teton National Park en route to Jackson Hole, Wyo. for a few days of cowboy life. Once you make your way back to the Yellowstone loop, head north along the shore of Yellowstone Lake which is dotted with geothermal activity, so keep your eyes peeled. As you continue along the loop, the option to turn towards the East entrance will present itself. If you have ever wanted to visit Cody, Wyo., this is where to turn off. Otherwise, continue north towards Canyon Village. Make sure to stop at Sulphur Cauldron and Mud Volcano along the way.

Canyon Village is surrounded by the spectacular waterfalls of Yellowstone. From here, you will start your journey along the North loop to make your way towards Mammoth Springs. At Tower Junction, you will have to make a choice. Do you want to take a detour from the loop to travel along the most remote area of the park, Lamar Valley, where the buffalo roam free and you are most likely to see the most wildlife in the park? You will have to backtrack to the loop, but Lamar Valley is worth the extra work.

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When you return to the North loop, you will be treated to the sites of Mammoth Springs where you can stop overnight or drive a little further to the town of Gardiner. Here you can go white water rafting. Gardinier is only a little over an hour from Bozeman, so you can head there afterwards. There are so many ways to customize a Yellowstone vacation including authentic experiences like glamping under the Big Sky or visiting a dude ranch. While Yellowstone can be a year-round destination, summer and fall are the most popular times to visit with fall being less crowded. However, sometimes you just need to go when you have the opportunity, so just go! Get more tips for vacation planning at

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Fun Outdoor Living

Personalized Outdoor Spaces We love to help people create more fun and enjoyment in their lives, and we do this by creating beautiful outdoor living spaces in our customers’ homes for them to enjoy for years to come. The mission of Fun Outdoor Living is to create fun and aesthetically pleasing outdoor spaces, but that’s not our only goal. We focus on the family and household lifestyle to get you out of your homes, off the devices, disconnected from our busy lives to enjoy quality time entertaining and relaxing. We strive to create a unique space the whole family can enjoy together, that addresses each individual’s needs. Our process starts by doing a complete walk through of the property together to take the time to listen to the ideas and goals of our customer. We then take measurements and begin to layout a computer design with all of the elements of the dream outdoor living space. Once we have dialed in the details and features of the backyard, we are able to present pricing and options. There are many finishes that can suit the homeowner’s vision and compliment the architectural character of the home, and we 34


take the time to review them with you. Our product lines include paver patios, stone hardscapes, and driveway remodels. We offer complete Custom Outdoor Kitchens, Fireplaces, Fire pits, with multiple finishes available. We build Decks using the finest quality composite and PVC products by Azek and TimberTech, the leader in the industry of exterior building products that last a lifetime. Our master craftsman can build you an amazing porch roof or pavilion to get away from the Carolina sun, or stay dry on a rainy day while enjoying some fresh air. Whatever your outdoor vision or needs may be, we would love to help plan it, design it and build it out for you. We have done thousands of backyards in the Charlotte area, and our designers have a collective 25+ years of experience. 20916 Torrence Chapel, Cornelius | 704.741.8433 8914 Pineville Matthews Road, Charlotte | 704.741.7154 4216 Old Monroe Road, Indian Trail | 704.741.0269

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When Life Hands You Cactuses, Make Margaritas is available on and at Main Street Books in Davidson. To donate in Adiba’s honor directly to metastatic breast cancer research, visit



Cornelius resident and author Adiba Barney.

s a t i r a g r a M oby Photo by Jac

graphy Rose Photo

When Life Hands You Cactuses, Make

A memoir about living life to the fullest in the face of adversity by Allie Spencer photography by Jamie Cowles

Adiba Barney with husband Kris and son Alex.

When many people used their additional time at home this past year to pick up a hobby, plant a garden, or start a side hustle, local author Adiba Barney decided to finish writing her book, When Life Hands You Cactuses, Make Margaritas.

her to the U.S. She was eventually recruited to be the CEO of the Silicon Valley Forum, a non-profit organization and her dream job. At the peak of her career, and newly married to her husband Kris Barney, she received the devastating diagnosis of stage 4 metastatic breast cancer.

She initially set out to write her memoir four years ago, not long after she was diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic breast cancer, a deadly, incurable disease. Her life already had enough adversity, achievement, heartache and triumph to fill a book. She started to outline her story, writing on her balcony in Tiburon, Calif., overlooking the Bay Area, where she lived at the time. Born into war-torn Lebanon in the seventies, she immigrated to Sweden as a child refugee, on a smuggler’s boat. In her twenties, she was building a life with her first husband, and a successful career in the tech industry, when she was diagnosed with stage 1 breast cancer, not once, but twice. Almost in tandem, her first marriage came to an end.

The missing pages

Following her second round of cancer treatment, her career brought

Reliving all of these ups and downs as she wrote, her book started to take shape. Through Indiegogo, she raised $13,000 in advance copy orders. Then suddenly, her motivation to write disappeared. “It was like I knew something was missing from my story,” she says. Of all the struggles in her life, nothing hurt her as much as not being able to have a child. So, she put the book on hold. In October 2018, after years of struggling with infertility, she and Kris welcomed a son, Alex, with the help of a surrogate. Not long after his birth, they relocated to Cornelius in pursuit of a more family-friendly way of life. They settled into life in The Peninsula, but Barney said the book was hanging over her. | APRIL 2021



Facts about Metastatic Breast Cancer • There is no cure for Stage IV, Metastatic Breast Cancer • MBC spreads mostly to bones, liver, lungs and brain • Women of color with MBC have a 40% higher mortality rate • People living with MBC take 10-30 pills daily just to be able to function, and don’t always look sick, but very much are • About 30% of breast cancer survivors will get MBC • The ribbon for MBC is teal, pink and green, made by Metavivor • Only around 5% of pink fundraising goes to MBC research

A few months after Covid hit, Kris encouraged her to finish her book, knowing that she would want to write her story for Alex. “Now I had Alex so the story was complete, and having a complete story felt like yeah, it’s time, I can do this now,” says Barney. She wrote every day, and with the help of an editor she finished her book in two months, self-publishing it in October 2020. Her positive outlook on the many “cactuses” she has encountered in her 43 years is awe-inspiring.

in Sweden, and hoping to find a literary agent in the United States. In addition to raising awareness and funding for metastatic breast cancer through her book, she is a dedicated volunteer with METAvivor, a non-profit organization that funds vital research for stage 4 metastatic breast cancer.

Embracing change

“Our goal [with research] is that we get more treatments.” She explains that three of the four lines of treatment she’s been on were FDA-approved in the last five years. “So we are literally working against the clock,” she says.

She is now writing the Swedish translation of her book, working with a publisher

Barney is currently on her fourth line of treatment. She was recently vaccinated against Covid-19 and excitedly rattles off her plans for trips back to Sweden, beach getaways, and a bucket list trip to New Zealand if the borders open. Like she writes in her book, she can now get back to “Living like there is no tomorrow and like I’m going to live forever.”

“The only thing you can plan for is to live your life fully,” she says. “Expect change. Don’t be bitter if things don’t happen how they were supposed to. Embrace that change, because with that change comes so many new things in life that you would never have experienced if that change didn’t happen.”

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It’s time for you to vote for your favorites in our 2021 Best of Lake Norman contest! What restaurant has the best pizza, steak, burgers, etc? Where is your favorite date night spot? Who is your favorite attorney, dentist, landscaper? All these categories and much more!

GO TO: And vote for your favorites!

CONTEST ENDS JUNE 30 Winners will be announced in our August issue. Only one vote per I.P. address Employees of Currents Magazine and any of its affiliates do not qualify to vote.


704-721-7198 | | APRIL 2021



A Perfect


ACEing Autism in LKN connects kids with tennis by Grace Kennedy | photography by Jon Beyerle

Children with autism have a unique resource available to them in the Lake Norman area, thanks to Julie Coughlin and her daughter Kendall. In 2019, the Mooresville residents opened a local chapter of ACEing Autism, a national organization that provides social connection and physical activity to children with autism through tennis. Kendall’s passion for helping children with special needs led to her discovery of the ACEing Autism UNC Charlotte chapter, where she started volunteering in her early teens. After many Sundays spent driving back and forth from Mooresville to Charlotte, Julie looked into starting a chapter closer to home, and ACEing Autism Mooresville was born. 40


About ACEing Autism In 2008 Richard Spurling, a tennis professional with a degree in International Business and an MBA in entrepreneurship, co-founded ACEing Autism in Boston, Mass. with Dr. Shafali Jeste, an autism researcher and child neurologist. The organization now has 73 program locations in 29 states. As a varsity tennis player for Community School of Davidson, Kendall, a high school junior, was excited to be part of the ACEing Autism team. She had spent many hours helping to teach math in the special needs classroom at her school and welcomed the opportunity to work with children with autism.

Kendall, Julie and Laurel Coughlin.

The fact that it was a tennis program made it a real win-win. Working with children with autism has taught Kendall to keep things in perspective and stay positive. “It’s eye-opening, because most of the time they have such positive attitudes. Sometimes you complain about your own life, but they are so positive, and there is such a lightness.” All of the volunteers at the Mooresville ACEing Autism chapter are teens, and Kendall’s mother Julie has been impressed with their commitment at such young ages. “Volunteering is invaluable for these teenagers,” she says.

The program ACEing Autism provides six-week sessions of one-hour programs for children ages five to 18. The spring session is planned for Saturdays from 1-2 p.m. from April 10 through May 15 at the Lake Norman Tennis Center. Although the lesson plans are structured, the one-to-one child-to-volunteer ratio allows each child the flexibility he or she needs to be successful. “If a child doesn’t want to play tennis that day, the volunteer will roll the ball with them for the full hour,” says Julie. This flexibility gives parents the peace of mind that their child will get something valuable out of the program no matter where they are developmental or emotionally. The tennis program used by ACEing Autism works on many foundational motor skills, including hand-eye coordination, bal-

ance, agility, and motor planning—areas where many children with autism benefit from extra practice and assistance. Research on the impact of the ACEing Autism program has found positive results, including improvements in behavior, hyperactivity and irritability. Participants also had increased confidence, which can encourage children to try other activities off the tennis court.

Your turn to serve You can help ACEing Autism reach more families by spreading the word. “The more people that talk about and share the program, the more success we have with families learning about our location and the awesome volunteer opportunities we offer for young teens,” says Julie. You can also organize a fundraiser to support the ACEing Autism scholarship program. The organization recently benefited from a Cupcakes and Champagne (and tennis!) fundraiser at the Lake Norman Tennis Center where the ACEing Autism volunteers, who had not been able to see their young friends in person due to coronavirus, were at least able to get together with each other and the generous fundraiser guests and make the event a success. Visit or email to register or learn more about how you can help. | APRIL 2021


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


Homestyles Interior Design





& Bright

by Bek Mitchell-Kidd photography by Tiffany Ringwald Photography




Historic Huntersville home gets chic facelift

Misty Malloy of CoCreative Interiors is in the process of helping the owners of this 1940s Huntersville home with a complete redsign, starting with the main living area of the structure.

Misty Molloy, founder and director of CoCreative Interiors, had her design-work cut out for her to bring a fresh feel to this historic home for her clients. At approximately 3,000 square feet, Molloy is working her way through redesigning the entire house, but started with the high-traffic areas of the living and dining space. The clients needed a multi-functional area that can accommodate family game night, entertaining friends, and a nap-worthy couch. Molloy began with increasing the light in the space by creating a custom electrical plan for the area, which previously had no overhead lighting.

Space defined

The structural layout is indicative of the time when the home was built almost 75 years ago, that definitely didn’t consider a flat screen TV or where to host a kids’ playdate. “We flanked the room with built-ins to create two distinct zones: an entertainment area and a library cocktail lounge to generate a sense of purpose at both ends,” says Molloy. She also used rugs to create intentional spaces; the family area rug is horizontal, while the library area rug is vertical—instantly creating a distinction.

Meanwhile, the color palette optimizes the natural light. Almost every element in the room is mixed with shades of white including the blue-and-white striped chairs, drapery, pillows, and the shelving of the semi-gloss white built-ins. Incorporating white accessories, particularly in the shelving keeps the space bright, and Sherwin Williams’ “Misty” wall color which is a light blue with a soft gray undertone that beams brightness. Layered lighter tones on the primary furniture pieces also reflect the light including the tightly-woven-lightgreen fabric ottoman, and the library area cocktail table’s whitewash finish. | APRIL 2021



Beach Vibes

The clients love the beach and visit often. Elements including the gray undertone of the hardwood floors and the fronds of the dining area rug are an homage to sandy shores. The whitewashed jute rug in the entertaining area adds texture while complementing the other beachy elements of the space.



The Focal Point

The blue wallcovering of the fireplace wall establishes a muchneed focal point in the long room. Wrapping it in navy sisal grass cloth creates warmth, while the whitewashed surrounding brick gives it a sense of place. Another space-defining effort is the crown molding which is installed only above the fireplace bump-out, as opposed to running the perimeter of the room. Molloy did this for two reasons: The ceilings are low, and she wanted the visual flow to draw attention to the fireplace and built-ins.


As a nod to the neighborhood, Molloy surprised the owners by hanging a hand-painted “Villeworth” sign over their newly built-in bench seating as a gift. The clients affectionately refer to the area of where their home is located on Mt. Holly-Huntersville road in Greenfield Park as the “Dilworth of Huntersville.” | APRIL 2021



Colorfully Chic

The use of color in the design is mesmerizing. “The clients have really fun, vibrant personalities and I wanted a palette with pops of color,” says Molloy. Small doses of varying shades of pink work well with the blues and greens to add just the right amount of whimsy. With a color like pink, adding it in small doses generates a big impact. “Taking the pink out of the equation would create a very different design,” she adds.



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Curtain Call

“I believe drapery is one of the most important elements of a design,” says Molloy. “They are often overlooked, but they have the power to transform a space.” Here are a few of her top tips when incorporating drapery into your design: Don’t go too low or too narrow. “Curtains should be hung closer to the ceiling (but below the molding); I generally like to hang them about a foot from the ceiling,” Molloy says.

Vote for Us! Best Place to Pamper Yourself r/BOTL2021 LISA ALTIERI Licensed Aesthetician Certified Spray Tan Specialist 704.564.1666 | | APRIL 2021


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

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Dine + Wine Eating, drinking, cooking and fun

p. 56 Pasta and Pomodoro’s p. 58 The Cheers! Trail in Hendersonville p. 60 Terrific tiramasu

Photo courtesy of Henderson County Tourism.

p. 62 Indian street fare at Masala Mastee

Relax at Sideways Farm & Brewery in Henderson County. | APRIL 2021


DINE+WINE - wine time


from an Italian Restaurant

Over the years I’ve spent many hours in family oriented, Italian restaurants. I treasure them all. Whenever possible I dine in one and it always brings back some very pleasant memories. In all the years my wife and I have lived in the lake area, and it’s a lot, we have been frequent diners at Pomodoro’s—in its original location and in its new home. Full disclosure, my wife is from an Italian family and that may have helped shape my opinions. Here’s a simple example of why I love these restaurants so much. Many years ago, my wife Mary Ellen and I would hang out at a local Italian tavern/restaurant. We were always served by our favorite waitress. She and I had a routine. I would order pasta and clams in red sauce. Notebook in hand, she would write down and recite, “linguini and clams.” My part in the routine was to ask if I could have spaghetti instead of linguini. Her eyes would roll, and I would be informed that, with clams, the pasta had to be linguini. My next part in the routine was to plead that pasta is pasta and that I wanted spaghetti. She would close her notebook and let me know, firmly, that I was getting linguini. This went on for years. Apart from a great pasta dish, it just added to the fun. Back to Pomodoro’s. It checks all the boxes. There’s a definite atmosphere—lots of Italian dishes on the menu, lots of hustle and bustle, great aromas emanating from the kitchen and golden oldies from the Great American Song Book on the restaurant’s sound system. So, given that, let’s get on to the wine at our last visit. Pomodoro’s wine list is filled with Chianti wines from Tuscany. That’s great and that’s appropriate. But I was in an exploratory mood. I meandered through the list and a wine jumped out. It 56


A great combination; a glass of Super Tuscan wine and a simple but delicious plate of pasta.

Pasta and wine at Pomodoro’s provides a nostalgic dinner by Trevor Burton photography by Trevor Burton

was a wine from Tuscany but had a listing of grape varietals that make up the wines of Bordeaux in France. This was a “Super Tuscan” wine. It’s a long story. Some years ago, a group of Italian winemakers wanted to expand from constraints of the Tuscan wines allowed by Italian laws. They wanted to experiment with non-Italian grapes. Italian bureaucrats had their flabbers gasted. They couldn’t believe that any reputable Italian winemaker would do such a thing. As a form of revenge, they allowed only the lowest categories of wine to be listed on the labels of these sacrilegious concoctions. It all backfired. These were great wines. These new wines were so good that they found a large audience of vinous admirers. They became somewhat of a cult—Super Tuscans. Anyway, one of them was on Pomodoro’s wine list and I went for it. Wine chosen, I had to come up with a pasta dish. That’s another story. At another family restaurant, I used to wander in at lunchtime and have a glass of wine and a plate of pasta. I got into a comfortable routine; some say it was a rut. I inevitably ordered capellini marinara—simple but delicious. So, it was a simple decision at Pomodoro’s, a glass of Super Tuscan wine and a simple but delicious plate of pasta. I confess that a great deal of my pleasure at Pomodoro’s came from luxuriating in nostalgia—going back in my mind to the many great dining experiences I’ve had in this type of restaurant. But, make no mistake, the nostalgia was delicious but so was my combination of wine and pasta. A great combination of past and present and a great combination of food and wine. Nice

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704.746.3636 | APRIL 2021


DINE+WINE | on tap Photo by Bill Russ

G y rC aft-


Follow the Cheers! Trail to breweries near Hendersonville by Vanessa Infanzon

In just two hours, you can be sipping a German lager with a view of the Blue Ridge Mountains in the distance. The Cheers! Trail in the Hendersonville area will lead the way to 23 breweries, wineries, cideries and a meadery. Purchase a $10 Cheers! Trail Passport online ( or at the Hendersonville Visitor Center. Get the passport stamped by 12 of the 23 locations and receive a special Hendersonville memento.

Kick back with friends at Oklawaha Brewing.

The breweries offer bottles, cans, flights and pints of their award-winning libations. Many also provide public and private tours of the property. Look for up-to-date information about live music, food trucks and special events on social media. All facilities arrange indoor and outdoor seating to be compliant with social distancing guidelines. Most ask that guests wear a mask until they are seated at a table.


Order a traditional European-style beer at the 18-foot-long bar from the 1930s and rescued from a Chicago establishment. The walls are adorned with murals by artists from West Asheville. The vibe is Victorian Gothic and the name, Burning Blush, is a nod at Edgar Allan Poe’s poem, “Song”. | 4891 Boylston Hwy., Mills River

Guidon Brewing Company

This veteran-owned brewery is in an old public works building. They brew authentic German beer: Try the award-winning German Pilsner. The space is designed with gemütlichkeit in mind—the German word for friendly and comfortable. | 415 Eighth Ave. E., Hendersonville

Oklawaha Brewing Company

Named for the creek that runs through Hendersonville, this brewery is within walking distance of the Visitor Center. Taste the hop-forward IPAs with citrusy, tropical and earthy flavors. Come for trivia

PRO Tips:

Lake Norman’s D9 Brewing Co. is expanding to downtown Hendersonville later this spring. The new location will feature a coffee bar, five-barrel brewery and locally produced hard cider and wines. 58


night or the Traditional Mountain Music Jam, hosted by WCNC’s Carol Rifkin. | 147 1st Ave. E., Hendersonville

Sideways Farm & Brewery

Walk around the farm holding a blackberry ale or lemongrass beer. Hops and barley grow, beehives flourish and wildflowers bloom— giving guests an agricultural connection to the beer they’re enjoying. There’s plenty of outdoor seating with views of mountain tops and nature. | 62 Eade Rd. (off Old 64), Etowah

Southern Appalachian Brewery

Celebrate the 10th anniversary of the oldest brewery in the county at the end of April. They are a 15 barrel brewhouse featuring two flagship beers: Copperhead Amber Ale and Black Bear Stout. The barrel aging program includes wine-barrel-aged and bourbon-barrel-aged beers. Look for a tequila-barrel aged beer in the future. | 822 Locust St. (Historic Depot District), Hendersonville

Let someone else do the driving: Contact The Trolley Company at 828.606.8606, or The Regal Ride at 828.808.3429, They’ll pick you up and take you on the Cheers! Trail.

UPGRADES+SERVI CE Fort heSt r e e ta ndT r a c k Wheel s&Ti r es Aer odynami cs ECURemappi ng Spor tExhaust s Suspensi on Bi gBr akes Oi lChanges Rout i neMai nt enance Ti mi ngBel t s&Chai ns Br akePads&Rot or s Car bonCl eani ng Di agnost i cs


Af t erf ul l yr evi t al i zi ngourl ongt i mel ocat i oni nChar l ot t e,wear eexpandi ngwi t hasecondl ocat i oni nLakeNor man!

CHARLOTTE+LAKENORMAN Che c kusoutonSoc i a l Me di a

GMPPer f or mance-CL T 710Pr es s l eyRoad Char l ot t e,NC28217 7045254946

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DINE+WINE | in the kitchen



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Tantalize your family and friends taste buds this spring with this decadent tongue-tingling creamy dessert. Incredibly easy to make and also a perfect make ahead dish. There is no excuse not to whip this up. Sprinkle in a handful of berries to balance nicely against the espresso and almond, creating a “melt in the mouth” not too sweet dessert (that has replaced birthday cake at my house). Beware the last couple pieces will command a lot of attention but can also be perfect for bargaining! Ingredients: 24 Ladyfingers (1 package, I used the organic Whole Foods ones) 16 oz (2 tubs) mascarpone cheese, room temperature 4 large responsibly laid eggs (pasteurized or very fresh) 1/2 cup sugar (either raw cane or 1/3 cup coconut sugar) 1 1/4 cups strong coffee (better if you use espresso) 2 tablespoons amaretto or 1 teaspoon almond extract 1 cup fresh raspberries, plus a few more for garnish 2-3 tablespoons unsweetened cacao powder for dusting over the top Instructions: Separate the egg yolks in one bowl and the whites in another bowl wiped with vinegar. The vinegar helps the egg whites beat up much fuller. For the egg whites, beat with clean beaters on high until just stiff (the whites should be just firm enough not to fall out if the bowl was turned upside down) and set aside. In the egg yolk bowl, add the sugar and beat on high for 2-3 minutes until pale yellow and thick. Beat the cheese into the yolk mixture until combined and set aside. Fold a few dollops of the egg whites into the yolk mixture and stir. Then gently fold in the rest of the whites into the yolks until just combined. In a small bowl (wide enough to fit a lady finger) mix the coffee with the almond extract or amaretto to use for quickly dipping lady fingers.

y by Glenn Photograph


To assemble, use a pan 9x9 inches that is at least 2 1/2 inches deep. Using 12 of the ladyfingers, dip each ladyfinger one at a time very quickly into the coffee mixture and place single layer in the bottom of the pan. Do not dip each one too long or leave in the mixture otherwise they will soak up too much and become soggy. Sprinkle over half the raspberries. Spread half the egg mixture over the 12 ladyfingers. Repeat dipping and laying the remaining 12 ladyfingers in a single layer over the egg mixture. Sprinkle the remaining raspberries and then spread the remaining egg mixture over the top. Sift the top with the cacao powder to cover. Cover and refrigerate at least four hours but overnight is preferable! Decorate with raspberries to serve and scoop out into wedges. Serves 6-8.



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

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DINE+WINE - nibbles + bites

Savor the

d o o F t e Stre of India Masala Mastee in Davidson

by Karel Bond Lucander photography by Gayle Shomer Photography

You won’t need your passport to sample the exotic flavors of Indian street food at Masala Mastee in Davidson. Even the name encourages us to break out of the ordinary; Masala means “spice or food” and Mastee “fun,” so prepare your tastebuds for food and fun. Indian cuisine is fresh and tasty with complex spices. Whether you like hot and spicy, mild and mellow (like me) or somewhere in between, there’s something delicious here to try. I’m a big fan of their Tuk Tuk Samosas and mild Mastee Masala. “Our dishes can be adjusted to your palate and spice tolerance,” says owner Vishal, who runs the restaurant with his wife and operations manager, Marina. “We can always add more heat, but we can’t take it away. For those who like milder sauces, there’s the Kreamy Korma, Mastee Masala or Malai. Railway Station and Biryani are good if you like a spicy kick. Someone new to Indian food might enjoy Chicken Pakora.”

Atmosphere of “Dhaba” roadside restaurant Step into Masala Mastee and you’ll feel like you’ve been transported to the streets of India. With colorful Indian-themed posters on the wall and a modern, funky vibe, their goal was a roadside eatery. This includes the “Tata” brand front end of a truck, which was imported from India and transformed into their service counter. They also have a “Tuk Tuk,” or three-wheeled taxi, from India that they can move outside near their patio seating once spring has sprung. But the star of Masala Mastee—the street food—highlights casual portability (in 100-percent recyclable containers). There are many options for vegans and vegetarians, with entrees and apps full of healthy vegetables and plant proteins, as well as chicken, lamb and shrimp for meat eaters. Traditional Indian desserts, like rice pudding, have a “MM” twist. In the warmer months, they’ll offer Kulfi (ice cream). “We love kids and want to be known as a family friendly place with good Indian food,” Vishal says. To quench your thirst while sampling their fare, try an authentic Indian soda: Thums Up (cola) or Limca (lemon-lime). “They are 62


Left: Masala Mastee owners Marina and Vishal. Above: The popular Pakora Platter.

unique, like craft sodas.” Their Strawberry Lassi or Mango Lassi (with optional Boba pearls) is similar to a smoothie. Also coming soon: Indian beer and wine. “We’ll have Kingfisher beer on tap, wine and bottled beer,” he adds.

A background in restaurant business Born in New Delhi, India, Vishal’s family moved to Virginia in 1997 when he was 9. They relocated to Cornelius in 2003 and opened Sangam Indian Cuisine. Vishal helped with the family business, graduating with an associate’s degree from Central Piedmont Community College and then completing his bachelor’s degree at Johnson & Wales University in food and beverage industry management. The Indian food at Sangam is different than Masala Mastee, which has its own distinct flavor profiles. “I wanted it to be different than Sangam and offer something unique,” he says.

Excited about being in Davidson For six years he and Marina sought a space in Davidson for their restaurant. After considering the Durham area and even a move to Colorado, Vishal’s dream materialized when the right opportunity finally arose. After months of preparing the building and halts due to COVID-19, they opened Masala Mastee last November in the heart of downtown Davidson. “You can’t get the feeling of Davidson anywhere else,” he says. “That’s why I kept coming back here. And the people in Davidson are amazing, by the way.” Vishal and Marina, originally from Egypt, married in 2016 and enjoy time with their almost 3-year-old son, Shaan. Vishal says running Masala Mastee is a “labor of love, especially meeting our customers.” So, when you’re hungry for something extraordinary, they look forward to introducing you to their Indian street food. Masala Mastee 107 North Main Street #101, Davidson 704.897.2211 |

YOUR BEST LIFE Courtesy of Iredell Health System

Spring Has Sprung

. . . And so has allergy season

Spring is finally here! Springtime brings warm, sunny weather, beautiful flowers and, unfortunately, seasonal allergies. If you experience red, itchy eyes, a runny nose, and constant sneezing around this time—you understand the frustration of seasonal allergies. As we approach the heart of allergy season, it is important to know the symptoms of seasonal allergies, what triggers them, and when to seek medical help. “The typical symptoms [of seasonal allergies] are a watery or thick runny nose, itchy or watery eyes, a stuffy nose, sneezing, and red or swollen eyes,” says Howard Suls, a physician at Iredell Family Medicine in Mooresville. The most common trigger of seasonal allergies in the southeast is the dreaded, yellow powdery substance that seems to cover everything in sight during spring — pollen. According to Dr. Suls, many people know pollen allergies as “hay fever.” While grassses are the most common cause of hay fever, ragweed and certain species of trees, like birch, cedar, and oak, also produce high counts of pollen. How do you limit your exposure to seasonal allergies? • Limit outdoor activities when pollen counts are high. • Keep windows closed and use a central air conditioning unit with a certified asthma and allergy friendly filter. • Start taking allergy medicine before allergy season starts. • Wash your hair daily before going to bed. • Wash sheets and bedding once a week. • Wear sunglasses and a hat to keep pollen out of eyes and hair.

• Limit close contact with outdoor pets. • Wash clothes worn during outdoor activities. • Dry your clothes in a dryer, not an outdoor clothesline. • Try a nasal rinse with either saline or distilled water. • Stop smoking. Smoking can paralyze nasal hairs that filter out pollen particles. If you are still feeling the effects of seasonal allergies after trying the above suggestions, you should contact your medical provider. Dr. Suls advises that you should also visit your doctor if your nasal drainage turns yellow, green, or bloody, as this could be a sign of a sinus infection, not allergies. Most importantly, make sure to address your allergies and take the above steps to limit your exposure so you can still enjoy the warm weather springtime brings. About Iredell Health System Iredell Health System includes Iredell Memorial Hospital; Iredell Home Health; Iredell Wound Care & Hyperbaric Center; Community and Corporate Wellness; Occupational Medicine; the Iredell Physician Network and more. Iredell Memorial Hospital is the largest and only nonprofit hospital in Iredell County. The comprehensive healthcare facility has 247 beds; more than 1,700 employees; and has 260 physicians representing various specialties. Centers of excellence include Women’s and Children’s; Cardiovascular; Cancer; Surgical Services and Wellness & Prevention. The mission of Iredell Health System is to inspire wellbeing. For a comprehensive list of services and programs, visit


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A Beginner’s Guide to

Disc Golf by Renee Roberson

I’m not really a golfer, and the only time I usually play mini golf is when I’m on vacation at the beach. I have friends who belong to disc golf leagues, though, and I’ve observed people heading to the disc golf course near my house at Bailey Road Park. Since I’m always looking for inexpensive things to do with my family outdoors, I suggested we try out one of the disc golf courses. For those not familiar with the sport, disc golf is played much like golf, but instead of a ball and clubs, you use a flying disc. The object is to complete each hole with the fewest throws. The golf disc is thrown from a tee area to a target, which serves as the “hole.” The hole is usually an elevated metal basket. Trees, shrubs and terrain changes provide a variety of obstacles for the golfer. The hole is completed when the “putt” lands in the basket. For our purposes, we purchased inexpensive disc golf sets for each of our family members from Amazon, but they can also be found in sporting goods stores and places like Wal-Mart. The sets contained three colored discs—a “driver,” a “mid-range” and a “putter.” We tried out the 18-hole course at Robbins Park, which was more challenging than I was expecting. Traversing up and down the terrain provided plenty of exercise and the course is creatively designed. There are plenty of natural challenges along the way, from close-set trees to hills to creeks (my disc had to be fished out more than once!) There are a few areas in particular where this course can get muddy so be sure to wear shoes that you don’t mind getting dirty. There are plenty of benches to rest along the way and we enjoyed talking to the other people we encountered along the course. Some were there practicing for an upcoming tournament, so we let them go ahead and play through since we were new at the game. The verdict? I have a lot of work to do, but this is a fun activity that can definitely burn some calories and bring some laughs (and 68


On the 18-hole course at Robbins Park in Cornelius.

occasionally a few discs hurled in anger when no one else is watching). My husband who golfs recreationally picked it up the quickest, while my teenage son looks like he could be a competitive disc golfer with a little practice. I need more practice than anyone, as I didn’t come close to making any of the Par 3 holes. I do look forward to getting more practice in and checking out some of the other disc golf courses in our area. AREA DISC GOLF COURSES Bailey Road Park, 18460 Old Statesville Road, Cornelius Robbins Park, Cornelius (Entrance is behind the baseball fields at Westmoreland Athletic Complex)

Stumpy Creek Disc Golf Course, 158 Stumpy Creek Road, Mooresville Bradford Park, 17005 Davidson-Concord Road Huntersville

To learn more about the rules of the sport, visit

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

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3 Immediate Steps to a More Confident Retirement


n life, when times are good, it’s easy to get comfortable; even complacent. We’ve all been there. But what about when things start to go a little sideways? When uncertainty enters into the picture, it’s easy to start to panic, especially when that uncertainty impacts your financial security and peace of mind. It’s only natural that when the market gets volatile and you watch your life-savings start to fluctuate, that you experience some level of doubt, anxiety, and even fear. But it doesn’t’ have to be this way. With a little proactive action taking, you can gain clarity about how to utilize your resources to help you secure your retirement income, no matter what uncertainty the stock market or the economy might bring. Here are 3 action items you should consider having in place, BEFORE we experience our next market downturn. 1. SCHEDULE A RISK ASSESSMENT: It’s one thing to experience fluctuations in your investments, but are you comfortable with fluctuations in your income? Most people aren’t, and if you aren’t sure how a market downturn could impact your retirement income, a risk assessment will offer transparency around exactly how much risk you’re taking with your income, so you can determine if there are potential adjustments you might want to make. 2. REQUEST A RETIREMENT INCOME ANALYSIS: How much income do you really need to support the lifestyle you desire in retirement? What sources of income do you have that you know you can depend on in retirement? Do you know how you’ll coordinate those income sources with your retirement savings to build an income plan that will deliver the life you want in retirement, without running out of money in the process? A Retirement Income Analy-

sis can deliver the clarity you want to help you retire with increased security and peace of mind. 3. BUILD A COMPREHENSIVE FINANCIAL PLAN: Don’t make the common mistake of confusing an Investment Plan with a Financial Plan. While your investment strategy is very important, it’s only one piece of the puzzle when considering a comprehensive plan. How you coordinate your income plan, your investments, your tax plan, your risk management strategy, and your estate plan, could mean the difference between running out of money in retirement, and experiencing the retirement of your dreams. GET PROFESSIONAL FINANCIAL GUIDANCE! There’s more complexity to preparing for retirement than most people anticipate. It’s normal to have questions and concerns about your financial situation, especially when uncertainty enters the picture. But you don’t have to go it alone - we’re here to serve as a resource and advocate for you and your family! BOOK YOUR COMPLIMENTARY CONSULTATION AND COMPREHENSIVE REVIEW BY VISITING WWW.TWWCALL.COM Derek Bostian, CFP® Professional Jason Rindskopf, WMCP® Two Waters Wealth Management | 704.275.2500

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