Living life to theWatersports fullest... from Watersports from different perspective perspective aa different
June/July 2008 â€˘ www.LakeWedoweeLife.com â€˘
Lake Wedowee Life 3
4 Lake Wedowee Life
Vol. 1 No. 3
Living Life to the Fullest: Watersports from a different perspective
Special this Month
11. The Creative Side: Roanoke man uses natural inspiration for creations 20. Theater made from Steele: Clay County family revives Ashland Theater 28. Unique Development: Sunset Point delivers more than fun on the lake to neighborhood 35. Home on the Lake: Log cabin designed for family fun 38. Concert Under the Stars: Summer Concert series to benefit Willâ€™s Way 43. LWPOA: Membership drive in full swing for lake owners 46. Rodeo: Sheriffâ€™s Department readies for 5th annual fundraiser
7. Enjoy Life! - Letter from the Editor 9. Beyond the Lake 14. Building on the Lake 17. Simply Fabulous 31. Southern Living House Plan 41. Hooked on Lake Wedowee 48. Wedowee Currents 54. Redneck Adventures
Contributing writers Darlene Bailey, Bob Krug, Reed Montgomery, John Triplett and Skeeter Lake Wedowee Life 5
On the Cover R. Chris Jenkins of Chamblee, Ga. photographed Shane White in July of 2007 on Lake Wedowee. Jenkinsâ€™ wife Cindy and Shane are cousins. For more information on his photography visit www.RChrisJenkins.com.
Editor KELLY CALDWELL email@example.com (256) 276-7959
Advertising Sales LAVOY CALDWELL firstname.lastname@example.org (334) 863-0737
BROOKE TROUT email@example.com (256) 750-3283
Lake Wedowee Life 18285 Highway 431 Wedowee, AL 36278
Even Lake Wedowee Life
Lake Wedowee Life magazine is published six times a year and available around the Lake Wedowee area which includes Randolph and Clay Counties in Alabama as well as parts of West Georgia. Distribution locations available by request. Paid mail subscriptions are available for $12 a year.
Lake Wedowee Life 7
Great people make Wedowee memorable
he people in the Lake Wedowee area are truly impressive. This issue proves just that with Chris Mitchum and his wood creations to Shane White and his remarkable perseverance. I have known Chris for some time and have enjoyed seeing all of his creations at the old cotton warehouse in downtown Roanoke, but Shane I found kind of by accident. The back story to Shane gracing this cover might not be as interesting as his personal story of success, but since Shane and Ashley found it amusing, I thought to tell the readers about it as well. It began in February when I was surfing the internet. From time to time I Google Lake Wedowee and see what interesting things I can find. That search led me to www.rchrisjenkins.com where I found these remarkable photos of this guy wakeboarding. It took me about a minute to realize why these pictures were so special. From that point on, I was on a mission. I emailed Chris Jenkins and found out the photos were of his wifeâ€™s cousin, we emailed back and forth for a while. And, before you know it, I was meeting with Shane and his wonderful family. Shane is a truly inspirational person and I was somewhat in awe of him when we met. He is not a whiner, when he has every right to be; he is a survivor. He has not let his accident keep him from doing things he loves to do, he just has had to make adjustments. If you ever get the chance to meet Shane in person, you will discover how awe-inspiring this man truly is.
Enjoy Life! Kelly Caldwell 8 Lake Wedowee Life
Great golf is closer than you think
ver the past 16 years, Alabama’s Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail has developed and maintained a reputation for challenging golf and great value. Artfully designed and beautifully landscaped by the late Robert Trent Jones, the Trail features 468 holes of world-class golf at 11 picturesque sites. Created through the vision of Dr. David G. Bronner, CEO of the Retirement Systems of Alabama, the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail, is as picturesque as it is challenging, and its resort hotels and host cities continue to measure up against the best in the country. Two of those destinations are a mere hour away from Lake Wedowee, and offer what The New York Times calls “some of the best public golf on earth.” Situated one hour south of Lake Wedowee is the single greatest site for a golf complex that Robert Trent
Beyond the Lake Photos by Michael Clemmer Photography Jones had ever seen. The Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail at Grand National in Opelika offers 54 holes of award-winning golf, including two championship courses and a short course, a beautiful collection of par threes. Built on 600-acre Lake Saugahatchee, 32 of the 54 holes drape along its filigreed shores, making Grand National the ideal golf setting.
Just over an hour’s drive north of Lake Wedowee is arguably the most photogenic setting on the Trail. The Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail at Silver Lakes is set on rolling terrain at the edge of Talladega National Forest between Anniston and Gadsden and features three championship nines plus a nine-hole Short Course. This facility is anchored by a number of strong par fours that play to pedestal greens perched 30 to 40 feet above fairway level. Its challenge is indisputable, as Golf Digest recognized Silver Lakes as the 22nd toughest golf course in the country in 2007. Possibly the most extraordinary aspect of the Trail is how affordable it is to play. Greens fees start as low as $43 and average $57. For more information on Alabama’s Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail, please visit rtjgolf.com or call 1.800.949.4444.
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Nature’s canvas inspires creations I
f someone asks Chris Mitchum to describe himself, artist is not even in the top 10 words he would choose, craftsman isn’t either. However, that person would be hardpressed not to use those exact words and more after discovering his handiwork. “Most artists, I would think, do what they do in hopes of selling some of it,” Mitchum said. “I create because I like it and I can’t afford to buy artwork.”
The Creative Side Story and Photos by Kelly Caldwell Visiting his make-shift gallery known as the old cotton warehouse in downtown Roanoke, people will find tree trunks turned into furniture, large pieces of stone carved into masterpieces and even the occasional painting all with Mitchum’s touch evidently displayed. “I love unique things, one of a kind things and I have never had the available cash to spend on it, so I make it myself,” he said. His love of carving began years ago when
Natural creations: Chris Mitchum has been carving for more than 40 years His current favorite medium is wood but has worked with stone, too.
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his grandmother would hand him fund.” bricks of soap to carve instead of He sold his house, packed all chunks of wood like his grandfa- his belongings into his truck, put a camper shell on the back of it and ther used. “My grandfather was a whit- started driving. tler,” Mitchum said. “My grand“I stayed in Myrtle Beach for a mother would give me these octa- while and met a beach bum that gon-shaped bricks of soap be- tried to teach me how to draw caricatures,” Mitchum said. “But I cause it was easer to carve.” The fascination with carving wasn’t any good at it.” began there and has However, this man evolved into so much on the beach did teach “I come from a him to downplay the more. “All my life I have family of builders negatives. reached back to carv“This guy could and I need to be ing even when I didn’t make $300 a day on able to say the beach from the have the means to carve,” Mitchum said. here is something tourists because of his “As time has passed, I personality and the tangible I created ” have moved on to bigway he would draw ger things.” his customers,” Chris Mitchum While living in Mitchum said. “The Macon, Ga., Mitchum guy told me, if a lady admits to having a mid-life crisis of comes here with a big nose, draw sorts. When he was 30, his relation- her with a little one, because that ship of three years had ended and nose had been bothering that lady work was not enough for him any- her whole life and to get a break more. from it would mean cash in my “I thought there had to be more pocket.” to life than work and being deMitchum took that to heart and pressed at night, so one day I went drew an entire family of coal minto my job and quit,” Mitchum said. ers because he gave the matriarch a “I told them I was going on an ad- smaller nose. venture and wanted my retirement “That woman let me draw all 12
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members of her family, stay in her house one night and even tried to fix me up with her daughter all because I gave her a little nose for a little while,” Mitchum laughed. After Myrtle Beach and other inlets on the east coast, he found his way to Texas where he stayed for the next six years. “The intention was to go to California, but I started going to Cowtown and boy do the folks in Fort Worth know how to have a big time,” he said. “I started fitting in with the crowd and bought a cowboy hat, cowboy boots, cowboy pants and then went to Cowtown and started dancing with those girls and ran out of money.” During his time in Texas, Mitchum found a large supply of soapstone and went back to work carving. He found another cache of soapstone when he returned to Roanoke 20 years ago. “Soapstone is easy to carve but it is very delicate,” he said. “I stopped working with soapstone because it is so fragile.” He did switch to carving in serpentine which is twice as hard as soapstone, but softer than marble. Mitchum has several pieces of Serpentine stone art on display at the warehouse. However, he doesn’t expect to go back to stonework anytime soon because he has found a
new challenge in woodcarving. “Everything I do is something I have done for the first time and because of that I spend a lot of time on it,” Mitchum said. “The last chair I made, I know I put 100 hours in it.” He doesn’t sell his creations because of the time he puts into them considering he only works on his creations during his free time. “My free time is a lot more valuable to me than my work time as a software developer,” Mitchum said. “They pay me very good money because I have been in the field for 35 years and to sell anything I have created would have to cost more than what they pay me
to work. “And, to sell anything at a reduced price to a stranger hurts my feelings.” Mitchum will stay with wood carving for the foreseeable future due to the creation of Kids Town in Roanoke. “They took down this huge pine tree when they were building Kids Town and I got the tree,” he said. “I have 10 blanks down in the second warehouse that will keep me busy for the next two or three years.” So far, Mitchum has created three chairs from the Kids Town tree all of which are one of a kind and that’s how he likes it. “I come from a family of builders and I need to be able to say here is something tangible I created,” he said. “I don’t get the visual recognition I need from software development.” So, he may not sell his wares, but he invites people to come view them. He hosts the Randolph County Animal Shelter Book Sale twice a year and admits to having a little personal motivation for it. “I like for people to see things I created and that’s one of the reasons I enjoy having the book sales up here so I can show off my creations,” he said. “I have to have feedback so I know if I am doing something likeable or not.”
Lake Wedowee Life 13
Now is still the time to build your dream home Economics is plagued, I believe, with more uncontrollable variables than any of the sciences. At the risk of oversimplification, physicians, for example, can usually observe a few symptoms, consider several causes, then prescribe a cure. Voila! Problem solved. The behaviors of germs and broken bones are generally dependable, therefore predictable. Engineers, biologists and chemists deal with even more straightforward cause-and-effect relationships, however complex they may be. But, the focus of economists is much more difficult, because it co-mingles complex (but straightforward) math with the feelings and behavior of people, making
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consistently accurate economic predictions nearly impossible. Consequently, economists are notorious for whispering predictions and triumphantly shouting “I told you so” when proven right. Who among us can claim that their feelings of well-being and
Building on the Lake by Bob Krug resultant spending behavior have not been impacted by the “sky is falling” economic atmosphere we’re all experiencing? It does not take an economist to see the relationship. But it can be diffi-
cult to tell the chicken from the egg. It’s therefore understandable that no one in the financial community has wanted to predict the end of the housing crisis – until now. Based on a refreshing combination of facts and common sense, a Mr. Moulle-Berteaux*, in the Wall Street Journal no less, has declared that the housing crisis likely bottomed out in April. His article titled “The Housing Crisis Is Over”, wisely reminds us “…that the current housing bust is nearly three years-old.” Remember when we all wondered when the “bubble” would burst”? That meant, when will housing prices get so high that no one can afford to buy? Well, it happened. So sales declined.
Builders were stuck with spec houses. Lenders panicked over sub-prime loans. Foreclosures increased. Prices declined. Economists shouted “I told you so”. So they had. And the economy beat a hasty retreat, encouraged by the “news” media, all too eager to help us feel bad. Mr. Moulle-Bertreaux distinguishes himself by a few simple assertions (and several more that are way over my head). Basically, he says that the national decline in pricing makes housing affordable. Affordability will increase sales. Increased sales, coupled with decreased construction, will burn off inventory. The balanced inventory will stimulate the housing market. The stimulated housing market will re-vitalize the economy. He closes saying “...housing led us into this credit crisis and this recession. It will
likely lead us out. And that process is underway right now.” Thank you Mr. Moulle-Bertreaux and the WSJ for unashamedly writing and printing good news! So, if you’ve been considering building on Lake Wedowee, consider this: Building material costs are still low (but starting to climb). Interest rates are still low. Builders are still willing to work with your budget. Prices on the lake reflect what Mr. MoulleBertreaux’s article points out, though thankfully we never experienced the sharp declines felt elsewhere in the country. Leisel Caldwell of Advantage Realty says “while most other markets were experiencing declines, Lake Wedowee real estate simply reached a stable plateau in its growth”. Linda Stone of Home Town Realty concurs. “Historically, market corrections
follow periods of sustained growth. But in our market, the correction has looked more like a holding pattern than a decline,” she said. Lake property is still a smart investment – and you’ll never find a more beautiful place to be smart than Lake Wedowee. What’s stopping you? Worried about the economy? Listen to Moulle-Bertreaux. Be part of the recovery process. Worried about the lake? Listen to me. Come on in, the water’s fine. *managing partner of New York based hedge fund firm, Traxis Partners LP
Bob Krug works for Mac McKinney Properties. Lake Wedowee’s only Southern Living Custom Home Builder. The company is also a member of the Earth Craft House program.
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Easy Summer S
ummer is beginning to get into full swing. Many of us spend most of our summer at the lake, and our taste buds are screaming for something grilled. A picnic is always a fun time with family and friends. This issue I will be sharing a tip for grilling at home and taking your food with you to your picnic location.
Simply Fabulous Story by Darlene Bailey Photos by Kelly Caldwell Here is a picnic menu that is sure to please with little preparation. Great food, a beautiful sunny day and good company---what more do you need? Fire up that grill and let's get cookin. *Grill Corn: On a medium hot grill, place as many ears of corn on the cob, still in the shuck as you want. Turn every 3-5 minutes. With an oven mitt, squeeze each ear to see if it is soft and springy. When done take up and set aside for 5 minutes. Then shuck and spread with butter. Yum Yum Good! **TIP: If preparing at home and carring with you, wrap chicken and corn straight off
Grilled Chicken Sandwiches Boneless Chicken Breasts Italian Dressing Bread (of your choice) Pepper Jack Cheese
Rotel Tomatoes Lettuce Ranch Dressing
*Grill Chicken: Several hours before or over night marinate boneless chicken breast in Italian Dressing.(adjust the dressing amount to how many pieces of chicken you use) Remove chicken from marinade. Lightly salt and pepper and place on hot grill. When completely done take up and set aside. On bread of your choice, put a slice of pepper jack cheese, lettuce and a couple spoons of drained rotel tomatees. (I like to put a little ranch dressing on my bread) Lake Wedowee Life 17
Class of 2008: The valedictorians from Clay County and Randolph County were honored with a picnic at Rice Pavilion recently. Those attending included (from left) Lineville’s Stephanie Lindsey; Randolph County’s Tayler Bradley; Woodland’s Anna Adcock; Handley’s Lauren Dean, Mallory McMurray, Alexus Perry and Wadley’s Samantha Fetner.
the grill in foil and place in cooler for traveling. This will keep it hot and fresh until you are ready to serve.
Glass Slipper Events would like to congratulate all the 2008 graduating seniors. It was a pleasure to enjoy our Summer Picnic with our area's Valedictorians at the beautiful Rice Pavilion on Lake Wedowee. Rice Pavilion is available for weddings, reunions, family gatherings or church functions.
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Baked Potato Salad 4 Baking potatoes 6-8 Slices of Bacon 2 tsp. Baking Powder Green Onion
Salt Pepper Ranch Dressing
Ahead of time, bake 4 baking potatoes.(can do in microwave) Set aside and let cool. Fry 6-8 slices of bacon, drain and crumble. Into a bowl cut potatoes into bite size pieces. (can leave peel on or off) Add bacon, salt, pepper, green onion, garlic salt and ranch dressing. Mix well and serve or chill for later. (if chilling add dressing 15 minutes before serving)
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Theater made from I
f the movie Field of Dreams was about acting instead of baseball, the Steele family in Clay County could definitely be the stars. “We have always been involved in theater,” Robin Steele-Thornhill said. “As a family we would do plays and my goal was to have my own theater.” The 25-year-old realized her dream in 2006, when the Ashland Theater re-opened for the first time in more than 35 years. A theater major at Huntington College in Montgomery, SteeleThornhill developed her love of theater that was first born through the Clay County Arts League and now along with her sister, parents and husband have brought back Ashland Theater like a Phoenix rising from its ashes. “When we walked through the first day, we couldn’t imagine how long it would take to turn it back to a theater,” Lori Steele, Robin’s sister and co-owner, said. “It had been office space when we bought it. The floor had been leveled and we knew there was a lot of work ahead of us.” The Steele family bought the
Thespian family: Robin Steele-Thornhill (left) and her sister Lori Steele have been the driving force behind the Ashland Theater re-opening. It has been a family project with the help of their parents Dr. Robert Steele and his wife Lani Steele. building in 2005 and spent the next year and half bringing the theater back to its shining glory. “We thought it was going to be a slow process,” Robin said. “But the pieces came together and people came out wanting to help. Before you knew it the basics of this
theater were done.” Renovation was not an easy process and it became more challenging when the group got to the stage. “We originally thought we were going to be able to keep the stage,” Lori said. “But after we brought
Story and Photos by Kelly Caldwell 20 Lake Wedowee Life
Pieces of History: When renovating the Ashland Theater the Steele family salvaged the original flooring under the steps of the VIP entrance (top left); the original lighting fixtures in the lobby were also kept (bottom far left); Going up to the balcony, visitors will find many photographs from old Hollywood (top). The Steele family also got inventive with the spot lights. This one (left) was a flood light from a ship. the floor back to a theater floor, we discovered the stage was not salvageable.” Looking on the bright side, it turned into a good thing because the stage has been customized with hide-away stairs. The only original theater architecture remaining in the revival are the lights in the foyer, the tile flooring in the area under the VIP staircase and the ticket booth. “It will always be a work in progress but the basics of this theater
are complete,” Lori said. The family was also adventuresome when it came to furnishing the theater. “The seats and curtain came from a theater in Vidalia, Ga., and one of the spotlights actually came off a ship,” Robin said. “We also have an antique spotlight that came from a theater near Pigeon Forge, Tenn.” The Mardi Gras motif of purple, green and gold was not in the original design of the theater, but ac-
cording to the sisters, many people come to theater saying it looks just like it did back in the day. The Steele family hosted the grand opening of the Historic Ashland Theater in November 2006 with musical performances by area artists and the theater has been an active venue ever since. The following month the theater presented Gift of the Magi and have had several plays and performances since. “The biggest thing that has worked for us to get people in the Lake Wedowee Life 21
door has been plays,” Robin said. “And, that is ultimately what we want to do more of anyway.” In July, the theater will host a drama camp on Saturdays as a chance to teach youth the joys of drama. “Our main vision is to bring together the community and working with children,” Robin said. “I think there is a real disconnect in Alabama for the arts.. We want to showcase the talented artists and those talents sometime don’t get tapped into as much as they should. “Another vision we have is to help high school kids get scholarships for theater,” she said. Being able to run lights and make costumes are skills that can make students scholarship eligible. The camp we offer will be more advanced in terms of taking it to the next level for those really interested in learning drama skills.” The Steele family has been active in the Clay County community for numerous years, and they feel the theater is just another way to give back. “We would like the community to feel this is their theater, too,” Lori said. “We want people to really support each other and build this community. We have gone out on a limb with this because no one has done this locally, and it is exciting and scary at the same time” The theater is also available for rental for private viewings of movies or parties. For more information go to www.theashlandtheater.com
Next Auction is June 14
Living life to the fullest
Shane White enjoys everything a typical Randolph County male in his late 20s might. He loves playing on the lake, riding four-wheelers, hunting, fishing and helping his wife Ashley raise their 11-month-old son, River. Now that the lake has reached full pool again he can be seen found on his boat or behind it. One of his favorite activities is wakeboarding and wake surfing.
Story by Kelly Caldwell Photos by R. Chris Jenkins and courtesy of Shane White Family “When we first moved into the house, we would go tubing a lot,” White said. “But, now that I have been turned onto wakeboarding, we haven’t used the tubes maybe 10 times in the last two years.” However, White is the first to admit he is different because of an event that happened more than five years ago. On a cold, rainy night while working for the railroad, his life changed in an instant. “I had been working for the railroad about eight months when the accident happened,” White said. White went to work Jan. 1 2003 and expected everything to go according to plan, but things went horribly wrong around 3 a.m. the next morning. The car he was riding on, clipped another rail car 24 Lake Wedowee Life
and derailed. White was thrown from the car but he didn’t escape injury free. The car rolled on top of him severing his left leg and severely damaging his right. “I landed sitting straight up and I could see that things didn’t look good for me,” White said. Due to the time of the accident, help did not find him immediately, in fact he says he was by himself for about 45 minutes. “There were so many thoughts going through my mind during that time,” White said. “I wondered how my life would change and how people would treat me if I didn’t have my legs.” Before the accident, White was extremely active playing baseball, basketball and football during his days at Woodland High School. “That was the thing that bothered me most because I didn’t think I would be able to do anything anymore,” he said. He also prayed and screamed for help. White’s prayers were answered when Fulton County Police Officer Robert Blalock found him. “God sent Officer Blalock to me,” he said. “We tied tourniquets on my legs to stop the bleeding and then more help arrived.” From there he was rushed to Grady Hospital and spent the next six weeks at three different healthcare facilities including Emory and Roosevelt Rehab Center in Warm Springs. After the first year, Shane wanted to do more activities and his friends helped him. “A buddy of mine was going to Mississippi to get an automatic 4wheeler back then” Shane said. “That was the first time I had ever heard they even made those.” After trying it out and feeling comfortable with it, he bought one
Normal as can be: Shane has experienced a great deal in the 10 years since high school (far left). Now he enjoys skiing either on the water or snow (above). He also plays with his son (River ) who recently celebrated his 1st birthday. for himself and then a year later he bought his boat. “I had a kan-ski that I would go out on and had fun with that for a while,” Shane said. But a year and a half ago, the Anniston Star did a story on White that really changed his life. Patt High and Kees Collee saw the article thanks to a friend who knew the work the couple had done with handicap water sports. “I left Shane and Ashley a message letting them know if they ever wanted to play (on the water)
to give me a call,” High said. “I really wanted to get Shane to hyrdofoiling but, after talking to some pro-riders we couldn‘t figure out how to make it safe for him to do it.”. Instead, Shane remembered having a wakeboard and decided to give that a try. “They got me out there, and I got it situated on how I could sit on it,” Shane said. “They tried to pull me up a couple of times and finally I got up.” “Shane is the most determined Lake Wedowee Life 25
but he is 100 percent man I have ever met,” High said. full man all the way.” “He is definitely a When the Whites are not on the lake, they are glass half full pervery active members at son.” After that first Liberty Grove Baptist outing, the Whites Church, where Shane is made new friends the building funds manager. He has also and Shane rediscovbegun to share his testiered his love of watersports. mony. “We love hang“Sharing my testimony is not something ing out with Patt I like doing, but it is my and Kees,” Shane said. “They have ministry,” he said. “It shown me a lot of For the moment: Five years after Shane’s accident, he feels more alive is not that I don’t like it. I love it when I do a different things to than he ever has and thanks God for what he has brought into his life. do on the water.” good job because God One of the most recent advencause if he was getting himself up blesses me through the way I feel. tures was in March after High and and to my dock by 8 a.m. there was But when I don’t go in prepared and Collee bought a kite. no way he wasn’t going to try it out, do a bad job, I whoop myself for it.” “Kite boarding is awesome,” too. Shane feels like God has a plan Shane said. “It’s where you have a “And, it took only once and he for him and he is here to carry it out. special kite attached to you and was up. He is just that athletic and “I know I don’t do everything in when you do a jump on your wake- coordinated.” God’s will but I am more in God’s board, you go even higher.” High and Collee have known will than I have ever been,” he said. High invited Shane to be more of Shane and Ashley for almost two “I have turned my life around, and I a spectator considering it was toyears and consider them great am loving life more than I ever have. ward the end of March and the wa- friends. ter hadn’t warmed up yet. “They are the nicest people you Family photo courtesy of Heart’s De“When I invited him, I told him could ever meet,” High said. “He sire Photography in Ashland. It was he didn’t have to get in the water,” has a little bit different perspective High said. “But he just laughed be- and is a little bit shorter than we are, taken by Shauna A. Denney.
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Story and Photos by Kelly Caldwell
The Perfect Weekend Getaway on Wedowee
unset Point nestled on 1100 feet of waterfront next to the Lonnie White Bridge Boat Ramp is not the typical subdivision on Lake Wedowee. It is a community reminiscent of neighborhoods 20 years ago, where children can be seen playing, and the families do more than the obligatory hand wave as a neighbor passes by. “We do things as a neighborhood here,” Beth Sollie, one of the 20 property owners calling Sunset Point home, said. “We already knew two of the families here, but the events we have had,
allowed us to make many new friends.” Sunset Point consists of 33 lots with a mixture of waterfront and off-water properties, but the homes are not common for this area. Park Model homes line the way, and it could be described as a trailer park on first look. But, the homeowners will tell you it is so much more. “We are a great lake community, and I see this more like a Maine fishing village than a ‘trailer park,’” Mike Sollie said. “We all know the stigma of ‘trailer parks, but this isn’t even
close to your typical trailer park.” The development came to Lake Wedowee in 2003 and continues to evolve as more people call it home. David and Tammy Sweet of Peachtree City, Ga. were the first homeowners at Sunset Point and have more than enjoyed every minute of it. “Sunset Point is the best personal investment we have ever made,” Tammy said. “It’s affordable, neighborly and definitely family oriented.” Celebrations and neighborhood gatherings are common at
Sunset Point. Last season, Murray Knight played for a party and there was even a pig roast to celebrate Alicia Hernandez’ birthday in September. “I tell people that my husband’s house is in Montgomery and my house is here,” Alicia said. “I love to visit the Caldwell’s porch and they have become my second family. We have been to their other house and they have come to visit us in Montgomery. We even celebrated Christmas with them this year. “That’s what Sunset Point is about for me. I love everything about this place.” Alicia’s husband Francis, an architect, couldn’t agree more. “This is the place we want to escape to when we feel like quitting our jobs,” he said. “Everything seems better here: my job, my family, my life.” Donna Carter another homeowner describes Sunset Point to her friends as her personal slice of heaven. “It is great medicine for me,” Donna Carter said. “I can really relax when I am over here.”
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Lake Wedowee Life 23
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Home on the Lake Story and Photos by Kelly Caldwell
Stones change pace of life after re-locating to Lake Wedowee
or Linda and Grady Stone, their home on Lake Wedowee is not just their vacati on h ome unless they are on vacation yearround. The Stones discovered Lake Wedowee in 1999 when they bought their first lake home in the Swagg Cove area of the lake. “I wanted the mountains
and Linda loves the water,” Grady said. “So we looked at several lakes in the surrounding area and decided on Wedowee because of its proximity to our grandchildren.” Grad y an d Linda have been familiar faces in the area for nearly 10 years due to their careers in real estate which led them to
Lake living at its best: Grady and Linda Stone enjoy riding around the lake all year since they moved here permanently in 2005. Lake Wedowee Life 35
h e l pin g their Georgia customers and clients discover the wonder of Lake Wedowee, but in 2005 they became fulltime lake residents, a trend that continues to grow as more lake owners tire of the fast pace of Atlanta. “We brought furniture to Gin House in December of 2005 and have been here ever since,” Linda said sitting in her family room of their 4,800 square-feet home. Being real estate agents for more than 30 years, the couple has seen thousands of house plans, but when it came to their own home, they couldn’t find the perfect plan. But, thanks to Grady’s experience in home con-
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struction, they developed their own plan and then promptly changed it. “The house was originally meant to have only two floors,” Linda said. “But Grady wanted to save two White Oak trees, so we went up instead of out.” The change in plans also allowed for four bedrooms, three that are on the second floor and decorated to honor their three daughters complete with baby
pictures. “It worked out so our daughters all got their o w n rooms,” Grady said. The second floor also has its own kitchen and laundry room. “We like that because when the whole family visits they can have their own space,” Linda said. “Also when they are not here, I don’t have to worry about the upkeep of the whole house.” Linda and Grady designed the home so every room has a view of the lake, even the bathrooms. “The view is the most important thing in a lake house,” Grady said. “We wanted to make sure we maximized it as much as possible.” Another important factor in
the design of their home was keeping true to the natural landscape of the area. “There is not one patch of grass on this lot,” Grady said. “We planted roses, native azaleas and brought in rock to finish the look. We wanted low maintenance as well as keeping it natural.” The house also features decks, screen porches and patios on all three levels for outdoor entertaining. “There is nothing better than sitting on the porch listening to the sounds around us,” Linda said. “It is absolutely the best.” While Linda and Grady admit they have slowed down their pace since leaving Fayetteville almost three years ago, they don’t consider themselves retired. “We came over here to slow down, but we haven’t retired,” Linda said. “We have just brought our business with us. “Granted, we have more flexibility than we have ever had, but we are still in the real estate business and intend to stay here.”
Full-time lake living: The Stones designed the home with comfort and ease in mind. Every room of the house has a view of the lake and the different levels of porches (above) maximize their outdoor living space. (Opposite page) The Master bedroom on the main level captures the simplicity the Stones like. The change in design allowed each of their daughters to have their own bedroom on the second level. Each room is decorated for the respective daughter complete with their baby portraits (opposite page). The Stones really enjoy the nature and keeping the trees, allowed for more shade on their porches (left). Lake Wedowee Life 37
Concerts under the stars to benefit Will’s Way Get ready for a good time this summer when bands from around the area hit the amphitheater stage at Will’s Way for a Summer Concert Series. The Classic Rock Concert featuring Wild Knights and Just Us is the second series and is scheduled for June 28. “This is a way to give the community an event to enjoy as well as raising money for our cause,” Re Holliday, one of the founders of Will’s Way, said. The organization formed in August 2007 in an effort to pay tribute to Holiday’s son William Sanford Holiday who was killed in a car accident a month earlier. The organization offers “a solemn, peaceful retreat to families” suffering the loss of a child or sibling.
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What is so unique about this going back to Will’s Way for conconcert is the two bands have struction projects and other improvements. never performed together. Gates will open at 5 p.m. the day of the show and the concert will begin at 7 p.m. The third concert of the series is slated for July 19 and will feature Ryan Robertson and Roger Hammett. The summer concert series is made possible by the following sponsors: American Steeples & Baptisteries, Inc.; Bank of We“Yeah Tom Norton said he and dowee; First State Bank; 431 Auto Tom Ziglar would arm wrestle to and Body Repair; H & M Drugs; see which band would play first,” Sheppard's; Small Town Bank; Sandy Holiday, Re’s husband, said. Southeastern Realty & Auction “We expect to have a great time Company; and WTW Trucking. and the venue is great.” For more information, visit Tickets are $10 with proceeds www.WillsWay.org.
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Fishing for Wedoweeâ€™s Big Summertime Bass I ts been said, " With age comes beauty." I don't know who said it, but I do know that if he was referring to a man made impoundment it would certainly have to be Lake Wedowee. I was among the first bunch of fortunate anglers fishing this manmade impoundment, more than 25 years ago. Fishing for largemouth bass was outstanding back then with many exceeding 5 pounds taken the first year it opened. Some bass taken back then were much, much bigger.
Hooked on Lake Wedowee by Reed Montgomery Today, Lake Wedowee is just as good as it was back then. During the past few years it has not only produced big, spotted bass - those exceeding 6 pounds, but also huge, striped bass with some weighing over 30 pounds. This now, worldfamous Alabama lake is still producing numbers of trophy-sized largemouth bass each season! The lake has recently shown to produce largemouth bass of near state record proportions. There have now been several largemouth bass those weighing in the 16 pound plus category - taken by some very fortunate anglers in recent years. The question now pondered by most anglers, those that frequent this lake is, " Could, such a bass of a lifetime...be caught by me ?" Of course, it could with a little knowledge of the lake, fishing the right lure, in the right manner, in the right place and on the right day! As Lake Wedowee ages, the
Rainy Day fun: Cloudy Rainy Days are great for fooling big bass like these on Lake Wedowee! sheer beauty of the huge bass lurking down below can only be seen by those anglers fortunate enough to hook into such a bass. Of course then you have got to land such a huge, hard fighting, tackle-testing largemouth bass. If you have not had the pleasure of actually hooking into such a beast, hopefully you will not come back with the old tale of, " the one that got away." To remedy this often sad situation, think like a Boy Scout. Be prepared. Like when any job is at hand, first getting ready and preparing all the tools of the trade, comes first. Before an angler ever actually goes out looking for one of these unbelievably, hard fighting bass, he needs to check all equipment. New line, good rod and reel combos and sharp hooks are a must. You must be ready for this " fish of a lifetime " or like many anglers before you, there is a good chance for failure. When hoping to succeed in your goal...possibly catching a
new state record largemouth bass out of Lake Wedowee remember, you only get one chance, so make it good! * Lure Suggestions Whether you day or night fish Lake Wedowee this summer season you have got make one decision before rigging your rods. Are you after numbers of bass and maybe a big bass or two? Or are you after big, trophy bass only, meaning fishing with specific lures, usually those bigger, more gaudy-type lures simulating big, easy-to-catch meals, those that fit their huge appetites and fill a big belly fast. Or maybe you would prefer to rig a dozen or so rods with a variety of both smaller lures and bigger lures. Keep in mind there was a lot of line-damaging, standing timber left in this lake during impoundment. Also Lake Wedowee has plenty of sharp-edged rocks and
See FISHING Page 44 Lake Wedowee Life 41
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LWPOA drives for new membership W
e have all heard the saying “Membership has its privileges”. Perhaps it is time to consider adding a second part to that- “and it’s responsibilities”. Why, you may ask. Membership on Lake Wedowee totals about 550 members of an estimated 2200 potential on the lake. That’s about 25%. This suggests many property owners don’t know or perhaps recognize the value of membership in Lake Wedowee Property Owners Association, which represents lake property owners on the many issues and concerns facing Lake Wedowee summed up in our charter to “improve and protect the quality of Lake Wedowee”. With the recent drought and forecast for similar over the next
several years, water levels of Lake Wedowee have become of keen interest to more and more stakeholders here on our lake as well as across the Tallapoosa Basin, including Lake Martin which
News to know By John Triplett LWPOA Membership Chair depends on Lake Wedowee for 50 percent of its water needs. And with increase interest of these various groups comes the need for increased membership. Our concerns need to be heard, but we cannot do that without your help. If you are already a member, thank you, and please help us share the need for greater
numbers with your neighbors and friends on the lake. If you are not, consider joining now so our voice can be heard along with others who are setting direction for the future of the lake. We want to double our membership over the next 18 months to 1100. That’s 1100 by 2010! You can find a copy of the membership form on line at www.lakewedoweepoa.com. Membership costs only $30 annually, and there are many opportunities to meet newcomers and build relationships with folks who enjoy supporting the beauty and wonder of this magnificent lake. Let’s target 1100 BY 2010! Thanks you for your membership and involvement.
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boulders that can damage water. Deep diving crankbaits line. So keep towards the and rattling lipless lures get big, heavier side when choosing deep water bass bites. line sizes. Jigging spoons are at their The hotter it gets the best during the summer deeper these bass may go, so months, when these big bass go bigger worms in the 10-14 deep. Both floating and susinch sizes work well all sumpending hard bodied jerkbaits mer. Big worms displace are good summertime lures more water, and they are big that call up big bass in clear wameals which big bass love! ter situations. Soft bodied, plasDaytime fishing in Lake tic jerkbaits simulate the shad, Wedowee's often clear summinnows and bream these bass mertime waters, may call for feed on. Fished weightless they the use of clearer worms or can call big bass up from deep worms featuring translucent water. Some of today's overcolors with glitter flakes insized swim baits, fished with side. If fishing stained to off long casts and a slow, steady Prize winner: Its possible for a mixed bag of bass colored waters, go with retrieve can be deadly on big darker color lures same goes like these, consisting of a nice Tallapoosa river spotbass. Plus not many anglers are ted bass and a nice largemouth bass on Lake Wedowee fishing these oversized soft for night fishing. Determine the depth of this summer season! plastic meals on Lake Weany bites you get and then dowee. count down your worms to that There are many, many lures for Fish Lake Wedowee this sumdepth. Or look for bass within a cer- both day and night fishing Lake We- mer season for big, largemouth tain depth on your fish finder and dowee this summer season. Actu- bass, spotted bass and striped bass. try to retrieve your lures right in ally, practically anything in the box If the summer crowd proves to be to much, try night fishing. Spend their face. Retrieve these oversized will work. worms in a swimming motion to During early light periods or the daytime hours learning to navientice these suspended bass to bite. late in the day or at night always try gate this timber-filled lake. Or you Varying your weights on your topwater lures. Walking type top- can always call on Reeds Guide worms and even trying big worms waters, prop-baits and buzz baits Service...first! For fishing Lake Wefished with a different line size, can are all good topwater lures day or dowee this summer season. " Over create different worm actions, a dif- night. Spinnerbaits are good both in 40 Years Fishing Every lake in Alaferent feel and even slow the rate of shallow water situations or when bama for Bass and Stripers." speed these big, bulky worms fall. slow-rolled and dropped in deep Thanks and Good Fishin'
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Sheriff’s rodeo coming to county Fourth of July
Fun for the whole family: Children are welcome at the 5th Annual Randolph County Professional Cowboy Association Rodeo. There will be plenty to see for the whole family.
The Professional Cowboy Association will be coming to town July 4-5 for the Fifth annual Randolph County Sheriff’s Rodeo. “It’s a lot of work, but the crowds enjoy it,” Randolph County Sheriff Jeff Fuller said. “We have been doing this for five years and have raised a lot of money for the Sheriff’s Department.” The rodeo will feature bull riding, calf roping, team roping, barrel racing, saddle-bronc riding and much more. “There will be all types of vendors there,” Fuller
said. “We will have all the fair food you can think of and there will be western apparel and souvenir vendors as well.” The gates will open at 5 p.m. each night with the show beginning at 8 p.m. “This would not be possible without the support of our sponsors,” Fuller said. “They have made this event a success every year.” Tickets cost $10 with children under three admitted free. The event is located on U.S. Highway 431 just north of Wedowee Building Supply.
Subscribe to Lake Wedowee Life for $12 a year!
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Wedowee Currents June 7, 2008 (Anniston) - Jun 7, Anniston Music at McClellan 256-782-5697. www.musicatmcclellan.org. Admission charged. Historic Fort McClellan--Enjoy friends, great food, historic preservation, and the beautiful Mountain Longleaf National Wildlife Refuge. The former Fort McClellan will once again come to life with the signs and sounds of noted musicians and our own Alabama Symphony Orchestra. 8-10 p.m. June 13-14, 2008 (Alexander City) - Jun 13-14, Alexander City Alex City Jazz Fest 256234-3461, 256-750-5209. www.alexcityjazzfest.com. Free admission. Strand City Park (Tallapoosa St.) & Lake Martin Amphitheater--Central Alabama's most celebrated and electrifying weekend, featuring nationally recognized jazz and blues artists. 6-11 p.m. June 14, 2008 Special Estate Auction (Roanoke) Grand View Antiques & Auction, 2641 Highway 431, Roanoke 334-863-6040. 1 p.m. June 14, 2008 (Anniston) - Jun 14, Anniston Junteenth Heritage Festival 256-237-2938, 256820-5631. www.JuneteenthAnniston.ho mestead.com. Free admission. Zinn Park, W. 14th St. & Gurnee Ave.â€”An emancipation celebration featuring blues, R&B bands, gospel, dancing, talent contest, step competition, hip-hop block party, food, arts and crafts, and rides. 10 a.m.-9 p.m. 48 Lake Wedowee Life
Spring Time Fun
The Lake Wedowee area was a fun place to be in April and May. May 17, more than 10 events were held around the area. Lake Wedowee Life 49
Tales Now this is about the time where Uncle Lisab’s brother, My Dad, enters the picture, because before they left the swamp, Mr. Beaudreaux invited Lisab back the following spring to go fishin’ and to be sure to bring along a friend and relative over the age of ten (you see cousin Thornt was only ten at the time). As soon as he got back, Lisab told Dad about Mr. Beaudreaux, the 12 foot long water lizard and the invitation to come back in the spring for a real fishin’ trip. Let me tell you now, My Dad was like a kid waiting for a new Red Ryder b-b gun on Christmas morning, by the first of February those two full growed men had bout drove the whole family crazy. They had loaded up every piece of camping and fishing gear they owned or could bor-
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row from someone and were counting down the days until the “Great Fishin’ Adventure”. Finally the first of March arrives and they are off, off to see the lizard and fish the great Okefenokee Swamp. Upon arrival, they were greeted by Mr. Beaudreaux, whose first question was, had they brought a good supply of “Branch Water’, which of course they had, after breaking out a fresh jug and passing it around a few times, maybe a few more than a few times and a good night’s sleep, Dad and Lisab were up before dawn waiting to pack their gear into the bateau and get into the swamp. Mr. Beaudreaux tells them not to worry about fishin’ gear, that he had everything they would need already in the boat. Dad and Lisab looked around the bateau for rods
and reels and bait, but all they saw was a pile of burlap bags. Having never fished in the swamp, they did not asked any questions bout the fishin’ gear they just loaded a jug or two into the boat and settled back for the “Great Fishin’ Adventure”. They had travel several miles across the swamp before turning into a narrow bayou. After poling the bayou quietly for a few hundred yards Mr. Beaudreaux pulls the bateau up to a willow tree the is leaning out over the bayou bout two feet out of the water. On the back side of the tree he takes a burlap sack and tacks the open end on one side and props the sack open with a stick. At this point, Dad is looking at Lisab and wondering what kind of nut he has gotten him off with, just then Beaudreaux takes out his
pocket knife and starts to whittle on the willow tree. Now Dad said he’d seen some folks that could carve, but nothing like what Buddy Beaudreaux was doing that morning, after about 5 minutes he folded his knife, put it back in his pocket, took his bandana and dusted off the most lifelike carving of a grasshopper Dad had ever seen. Buddy Beaudreaux picked up the pole and poled the bateau about 40 yards away from the tree and turned to Dad and Lisab and grinned. What happened next to this day Dad finds hard to believe
but he was there and saw it and brother Lisab backs it up, all of a sudden there was the most awful splashing you have ever heard, Dad thought it was one of them big water lizard coming to get them. Buddy Beaudreaux told him not to worry as he begin to pole the bateau back to the willow tree, as they got closer Dad could see that the splashing was indeed not a big lizard, but was fish jumping out of the water. Seems that the fish were jumping to get the grasshopper on the tree., hitting the tree and knocking themselves out and fal-
ling into the open burlap sack. About every 15 minutes or so, Beaudreaux would pole over to the tree and change out the full sack for an empty one, but he could only do this if Dad or Lisab would hold their hand over the grasshopper on the tree. So ends the “Great Okefenokee Swamp Fishin’ Adventure”, know now that no animals, fish or fowl were harmed in the telling of this story, only that a few jugs (OK maybe a few more than a few) of Alabama Branch Water were killed for the sake of this story.
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Currents June 20, 21 & 22, 2008 (Rock Mills) Wehadkee Trade Days at the Old Mill in Rock Mills starting at 8 am on Fri and Sat. The auction will begin at 3 pm on Saturday. For more information call 334-8856611.
Continued from Page 48 Gates open at 5 p.m. Concert to begin at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $10 and will be available at the gate. For more information visit www.willsway.org.
Tickets cost $10 with children under 3 admitted free. July 5th,12th,19th,26th Ashland Theatre's STAR Camp Grades 2-12. www.theashlandtheatre.com
Sat. The auction will begin at 3 pm on Saturday. For more information call 334-885-6611.
July 19, 2008 (Roanoke) Country Concert Under the Stars. Concert featuring Roger June 28, 2008 (Dadeville) Hammett and Ryan RobertJune 28, Dadeville Living HisJuly 8-12, 2008 (Jacksonville) son with proceeds benefiting tory Day at Horseshoe Bend June 20, 21 & 22, 2008 256-234-7111. www.nps.gov/ - Jul 8-12, Jacksonville "Little Will's Way. Gates open at 5 Red Riding Hood" 256-782(Ashland) The Historic Ash- hobe. Free. Horseshoe Bend p.m. Concert to begin at 7 5648. www.jsu.edu/depart/ p.m. Tickets cost $10 and will land Theatre Presents National Military Park-drama. Admission charged. be available at the gate. For "GENERATIONS". A night of Watch the Horseshoe Bend Jacksonville State Univ. A One Act plays and scenes for Militia and see volunteers in more information visit production by JSU Children's www.willsway.org. all ages. period dress conduct drills Tickets: Adults $6 Senior Citi- and other activities. 10 a.m.-3 Theatre with original dialogue & music by Eric July 3-31, 2008 (Lineville) - Jul zens / Kids $4 p.m. Traynor, adapted from the 3-31, Lineville Summer Sizzle www.theashlandtheatre.com classic children's story. 2 p.m. 256-396-2058. July 4 & 5, 2008 (Wedowee) June 28, 2008 (Roanoke) Clas- Randolph County Rodeo The www.claycochamber.com. July18, 19 & 20, 2008 (Rock sic Rock Concert Under the Free admission. Lineville City Randolph County Sheriffâ€™s Mills) Wehadkee Trade Days Parkâ€”Enjoy concerts in Park Stars. Concert featuring Wild Department 5th Annual Roat the Old Mill in Rock Mills Knights and Just Us with pro- deo will begin at 8 p.m. every Thursday in July startstarting at 8 am on Fri and ceeds benefiting Will's Way. ing at 7 p.m. nightly. Gates open at 5 p.m.
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Index of Advertisers Advertiserâ€™s Name
A & E Metal
Meadows Farm Equipment
Norton's Floor Covering
P & W Boat Docks
Alabama Power Company
Randolph Co. Industrial Development Council
REC warehouse Douglasville
Ashland Family Care
Rice Pavilion and Boat Storage
Ava Hills Assisted Living
Roanoke City Schools
Bank of Wedowee
Singleton Marine Group
Cheaha View Marine
Southern Home Comfort
Clay County Chrysler Dodge Jeep
Custom Marble and Granite
D & S Marine
Thackston & Son
Tallapoosa River Electric
Taylor Made Concrete Coatings
H& M Drugs
W & M Grocery
Wedowee Building Supply
Lake Wedowee Rentals
Mac McKinney Properties
Wellborn Cabinet Factory Direct
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don’t know exactly how my Dad and his kin got off on a fishin’ adventure to the Okefenokee Swamp, some forty years ago, but I’m gonna tell ya’ll as best as I can recollect. As best as I recall, one of my distant cousins, was on a “Cub Scout” camping trip there. While he and the rest of his wild, blue clad braves were terrorizing every animal, vegetable, and scout leader in the park, the raccoons were getting revenge, by raiding and carrying off everything that wasn’t tied down.
fenokee Swamp. Once they got there, Lisab told Thornt that he had never seen such By Skeeter warm weather in the middle of November. Neither one of them had Once “My Ole’ Cuz” got back taken into account just how much home, being the notorious trapper farther south the Okefenokee and general outdoors boy that he Swamp was in comparison to Wewas, he told his dad,“Uncle Lisab” dowee, Alabama. You see with no about all the big water lizards and cold weather there is no prime fur, the over abundance of them furry no prime fur, no profit, such was bandits that he had seen in the the downfall of our future fur marswamp. ket barons. So with all these facts in Uncle Lisab decided that him mind, nothing to be done but pull and Cousin Thornt could corner the traps and load up the truck for the fur market and show a nice the trip back to Wedowee. Now, wind-fall profit, while helping the Lisab and Thornt didn’t rush on park rangers reduce the raccoon back home they decided that they population at the same time. Bemay as well stay a while and enjoy sides Uncle Lisab had never seen a a couple of days riding around the 10-foot long water lizard before. So backwoods, camping, trying their with bait, traps, coolers, and any hand at fishin’, but mostly slapping other thing they thought they skeeters. One day as they were might need , Uncle Lisab and driving along they spotted a man Cousin Thornt headed south to loading a bateau in his truck, being Waycross, Georgia and the Okethe good fellows that they were, 54 Lake Wedowee Life
Lisab and Thornt stopped to help him. After the bateau was loaded, the man introduced himself as Buddy Beaudreaux and that he was a local resident to the area and that he knew all about the swamp and all the fish, fowl and other critters that lived in the swamp. After talking to Lisab and Thornt for a while and deciding that they were harmless souls and not lawmen or revenuers, Mr. Beaudreaux was proud to show them his prize hidden in the marsh grass. Low and behold there laid a big water lizard bout 12 feet long, Lisab and Thornt had never seen such a critter so to celebrate Mr. Beaudreaux success, Uncle Lisab had Thornt fetch a jug of “Alabama Branch Water” from the truck. After passing the jug around a few times, maybe a few more than a few times, the talk got heavy on the subject of their huntin’ and fishin’ prowess.
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