LIVE Lee ISSUE 5 - MAY/JUNE 2021
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CONTRIBUTORS Ann Cipperly Kayla Evans JD McCarthy Natalie Salvatore Lofton Wheeles
DESIGN ILLUSTRATION LAYOUT Hannah Lester Michelle Key
MARKETING Woody Ross Rena Smith
Michelle Key, Publisher Originally from Albertville, Alabama, Michelle Key and her family moved to the Opelika-Auburn area in 2011 after her husband’s retirement from the U.S. Navy. She is a graduate of Troy University, and she joined the Observer in 2014 as an office administrator before assuming ownership of the newspaper in January 2018.
Hannah Lester, Live Lee Associate Editor Hannah Lester is a 2019 journalism graduate from Auburn University who is originally from Birmingham. She started with the Opelika Observer in July and began as the Associate Editor for the Live Lee Magazine. She assigns, writes and edits pieces for the magazine, as well as helps to design the pages.
PHOTOGRAPHY Abbey Crank Hannah Lester Robert Noles
CONTACT US Key Media, LLC
Wil Crews, Opelika Observer Associate Sports Editor Wil Crews is an Auburn University 2020 journalism graduate originally from Prattville, Alabama. He works as the Opelika Observer’s associate sports editor and assists in developing the weekly paper and Live Lee Magazine.
207 N. 3rd St., Opelika Phone: 334-749-8003 www.LiveLeeMagazine.com firstname.lastname@example.org
LIVE Lee is a publication created by Key Media, LLC.
Robert Noles, Photographer Robert Noles is an award-winning photojournalist who has been with the Opelika Observer for more than 10 years. Originally from Tallassee, he is a graduate of Alabama Christian College and Auburn University.
TABLE OF CONTENTS Letter From The Associate Editor ................................6
Camping Out ... or In? ..................................................40
Summer Living ...... ........................................................8
Let’s Plant A Garden ......................................................46
Calendar of Events........................................................10 Sun-Kissed Picnics ........................................ .............55 “A Family Farm” ........ ...................................................12 Farmers Markets .........................................................62 The Days of Summer ..................................................18
Derby Day 2021 ............................................................24 A Community Affair ...................................................74 The Party’s In The Back ................................................28 Deep Diving ..................................................................80 The Real ‘BUZZ’ in Lee County ..................................32 LIVE Music‘Lee’ ..........................................................90 Work It Out at AR Workshop ....................................36
Letter from the Associate Editor
elcome to summer! We planned a whole issue around this beautiful, summer
season. I love summertime, I love the beach and my birthday is in July. What a great mix. Summer in the south can be brutal, but it has its perks. While visiting is great, I don’t think I could live in the North — I like things on the warmer side. Now, don’t get me wrong, sometimes it gets a little too hot for my taste here in Alabama. But it’s a nice trade-off for being within driving distance of a beach, rather than a plane ride away. Summer is a great time to spend with
friends, family and to try new things, especially things that involve water. We featured Adventure Sports Inc., in this summer issue. This awesome business has something completely unique for our area — scuba diving classes! Now, I’ve never learned to scuba dive, but both my brother and my dad have, and I certainly want to! And it’s extremely convenient to have a place to learn right here in Auburn. Another big part of summer — the food! My mom had a garden and growing up and we would have tomatoes, squash, zucchini and my favorite — okra! Do you prefer steamed or
fried okra? For me, it depends on my mood. Fried okra is amazing, but if we steamed it, we had homemade hollandaise sauce with it — perfection. Ann Cipperly details a few recipes on how best to cook up your summer veggies in this issue. But we also talked about where to get these summer veggies — the local farmer’s markets! We hope that you find our summer issue chock-full of fun summer activities, good recipes and some stories you enjoy reading.
Do you know where to find us? Issues of LIVE Lee can be found at the following locations in one of our new sponsored boxes: Beauregard Drugs - sponsored by Centerstate Bank Butcher Paper BBQ - sponsored by Wadkins Metal Hardees Exit 60 - sponsored by Cosmic Connexion Krispy Kreme - sponsored by Zach Alsobrook Rob’s Ribs -Auburn - sponsored by Trinity Christian School Sam’s Club - sponsored by Harvest Thrift Terry’s Grocery - sponsored by Smiths Station Rx Terry’s Marathon - sponsored by Price’s Small Engine Toomers Drug Store - sponsored by Gorees Winn Dixie - Opelika - sponsored by Hippie Street
Swimming F u n ! F u S N O I T A
What does summer living mean to you ...
C A V
Gardens Friends tomato
m r Picn fa ics
fishing fireworks Ice Cream —8—
flowers ! parties
c o r n M oes U on the cob SI playgrounds camp C crafts Watermelons s cert s
Party Like It's Summer 2021
June 18: Molly Tuttle at the Standard Deluxe at 5:30 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41565/Standard-DeluxeMolly-Tuttle/
June 19: Together Opelika Game on Flag Football Day at Opelika High School Bulldog Stadium from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41618/Together-OpelikaGame-On-Flag-Football-Day/ June 19: The Sound Wall Music Initiative at The Sound Wall from 7 to 11 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41599/Inaugural-GardenParty/ June 24 - June 27: Paddles at the Plex at The Opelika Sportsplex www.aotourism.com/ Event/41378/Paddles-at-thePlex/ June 24: Susto at the Standard Deluxe at 5:30 p.m. www.standarddeluxe.com/ shop/sustojune24 June 25: Patterson Hood of Drive By Truckers at the Standard Deluxe at 5:30 p.m.
June 26: The Band of Heathens at the Standard Deluxe at 5:30 p.m. www.standarddeluxe.com/ shop/heathensjune26 June 29 - Sept. 12: Crafting America at the Jule at The Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41514/Crafting-Americaat-the-Jule/ July 3: Heart of Waverly BBQ at the Standard Deluxe www.standarddeluxe.com/ shop/allstars July 9 - July 11: Junior Team Tennis — Alabama Championships at the Yarbrough Tennis Center www.aotourism.com/ Event/41399/Junior-Team-Tennis-Alabama-Championships/ July 10: Nature Art Series: Bees at the Kreher Preserve and Nature Center from 9 to 11 a.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41198/Nature-Art-SeriesBees/
July 11: In the Garden with Cyndi at KPNC at the Kreher Preserve and Nature Center from 1 to 4 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41468/In-the-Gardenwith-Cyndi-at-KPNC/ July 16: Go Fish at E.W. Shell Fisheries Center at E.W. Shell Fisheries Center from 4 to 8 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41629/Go-Fish-at-EWShell-Fisheries-Center/ July 16: First Inaugural Axe Throwing Tournament at Blade and Barrel Axe Co. on July 16 from 6 to 9 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41622/First-InauguralAxe-Throwing-Tournament/ July 20: Cheers on the Corner in Downtown Auburn from 6 to 10 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41485/Cheers-on-theCorner-2021/ July 24 - July 25: Opelika Dawg Pound Summer Bowl at Floral Park at 9 a.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41454/Opelika-DawgPound-Summer-Bowl/
Summer Camps For Summer 2021 June 21 - June 25: Spicer’s Rock Camp Jr at Spicer’s Music from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/18488/Spicers-RockCamp-Jr-Session-1/ June 21 - June 25: AR Workshop Summer Camp at AR Workshop Auburn from 1:30 to 4 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41597/AR-WorkshopSummer-Art-Camp/ June 28 - June 30: Southern Union Beginner’s Golf Camp at The Greens at Auburn from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41592/Southern-UnionBeginners-Golf-Camp/ June 28 - June 30: Southern Union Advanced Golf Camp at The Greens at Auburn from 1 to 5 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41594/Southern-UnionAdvanced-Golf-Camp/ June 28 - July 1: Spicer’s Camp Kazoo Session 1 at Spicer’s Music from 9 to 10:30 a.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41511/Spicers-CampKazoo-Session-1/ July 5 - July 8: AR Workshop Summer Tie-Dye Camp at AR Workshop Auburn from 1:30 to 4 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41598/AR-Workshop-
Summer-Tie-Dye-Camp/ July 5 - July 9: Spicer’s Rock Camp Jr at Spicer’s Music from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41509/Spicers-RockCamp-Jr-Session-2/ July 12 - July 15: Firing Pin’s Summer Kid’s Camp for ages 13 to 15 from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. www.firingpinshootingsports. com/store/p8/kids-summercamp-2.html July 12 - July 15: Spicer’s Camp Kazoo Session 2 at Spicer’s Music from 9 to 10:30 a.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41512/Spicers-CampKazoo-Session-2/ July 12 - July 15: SUSCC Summer Adventures Camp at the Opelika Campus Center for Integrated Manufacturing from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41630/SUSCC-SummerAdventures-Camp/
Event/41510/Spicers-RockCamp-Jr-Session-3/ July 19 - July 22: SUSCC Summer Adventures Camp at the Opelika Campus Center for Integrated Manufacturing from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41631/SUSCC-SummerAdventures-Camp/ July 22 - 25: Spicer’s Adult Rock Camp at Spicer’s Music www.aotourism.com/ Event/41513/Spicers-AdultRock-Camp/ July 26 - July 29: Firing Pin’s Summer Kid’s Camp for ages 13 to 15 from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. www.firingpinshootingsports. com/store/p8/kids-summercamp-2.html July 26 - July 28: Southern Union Beginner’s Golf Camp at The Greens at Auburn from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41593/Southern-UnionBeginners-Golf-Camp/
July 19 - July 21: Summer Adventure Camp at the Kreher Preserve and Nature Center from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41419/Summer-Adventure-Camp/
July 26 - July 28: Southern Union Advanced Golf Camp at The Greens at Auburn from 1 to 5 p.m. www.aotourism.com/ Event/41595/Southern-UnionAdvanced-Golf-Camp/
July 19 - July 23: Spicer’s Rock Camp Jr at Spicer’s Music from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. www.aotourism.com/
**Dates and times of events and camps are subject to change.
“A FAMILY FARM” Story By Hannah Lester Photos By Abbey Crank and Contributed By Harman Family Farm
wo people need a little extra cash. They both hate tomatoes. So the logical conclusion is that the two would grow and sell tomatoes. Harman Family Farm is more than just hydroponically-grown tomatoes and lettuce. It is a family of 15 that always seems to be growing. Chris and Rita Harman originally decided to start growing tomatoes when their daughter, Megan, was turning 16. She wanted to drive a car and get her license, like all the other children her age. But finding a car for Megan was going to take a bit of extra work and money — she is a functioning quadriplegic.
Megan was born with Arthrogryposis, Chris said. “Basically your muscles don’t develop right while the fetus is in the womb with the mother and basically, you’re born with pretty much about as much muscle as you’re going to get,” he said. “You don’t get a lot stronger, grow a lot of muscles with this.” So when Megan was looking to drive, finding a car that would allow her to drive was going to cost $100,000, Chris said. Chris and Rita began considering ways they could afford this, outside of the partial help the state was going to provide. “I had always sort of had an interest in what they call aquaponics, which is growing fish
and also with plants, but … I saw in a magazine about a guy growing tomatoes hydroponically,” Chris said. The idea was born and the family bought a greenhouse. Now, they have two greenhouses and not only grow tomatoes, but lettuce hydroponically. “That gave me a way to have a second job and stay at home, plus I could get some help from my family,” Chris said. Chris needed to be at home as much as he could be because the Harman’s have a lot of children. Over the last 14 years that they have been growing tomatoes, they have also been growing their family. The Harman’s have fostered over
75-80 children over the years — and adopted four. They also have five biological children. So, while Megan eventually did get the outfitted van necessary to allow her to drive, growing tomatoes also became a way for the Harman’s to support fostering. And now, they are a family of 15. Chris and Rita have five biological and four adopted children: Megan (30), Ben (29), Kim (21), Kyle (18), Kelly (18), Erica (15), Brandon (13), Jacob (10) and JadaLynn (10). The Harmans are also currently fostering four: Madi (19) and her son, Sebastian (4), Bree (18) and Nicey (17). And let’s add one more — Chris’s mother lives with the family too! So, a family of 16. Growing Hydroponically: Planting hydroponically essentially means planting in something other than soil, Chris said. “For a long time, I grew them in compost or a ground-up coconut husk,” he said. “This year, to try to cut some costs and all, I’ve gone back to growing them in finely composted pine bark.” Something interesting to note — the Harman’s have tomatoes when most others don’t. They plant in October and the season runs from January to July 4. “We don’t compete with summer tomatoes, so our season starts very early,” Rita said. “We have tomatoes in January … Our big goal is not to compete with yard tomatoes but have good tomatoes in the winter.” There are 580 plants this season, Chris said, with two plants in a container. A walk through the
Harman’s greenhouse is a walk through rows of tomato plants that stretch to the ceiling. Each week the Harman’s go through and take off the ‘suckers’ of the plant, which means the extra branches of the tomato plant. They want long vines, Chris said. “[The plants] will grow up to ten feet and then about five, six times a year, we’ll have to drop the plant about two or three feet and then slide it, and it basically makes room for it to grow more,” he said. Essentially, this means you have vines trailing the floor for a few feet before rising back up to the ceiling in the greenhouse. Like all plants, there needs to be pollination, too. To achieve that in the greenhouse, Chris places a hive of bees inside. By the end of the season, the Harmans will have harvested 10,000 to 17,000 pounds of tomatoes. The Harman’s run the business on an honor system. They have a building where all the tomatoes are stored in crates. There is also a scale. Customers weigh their tomatoes and leave the cash in a mailbox. The Family Behind The Tomatoes: Over the last several years, the entire family has helped with the tomato business, Chris said. “[Megan] helps me with social media and computer work, printing off stuff, I guess you could say sort of advertising,” he said. A lot of the Harman children have grown up with the business. “My eighteen-year-old twins, they’re the most heavily involved right now,” he said. “Along with all
the foster kids that have been old enough, have worked in there at times.” Household chores involve chores in the greenhouse, too. “It’s truly a family farm,” Chris said. Rita said that as the children have grown older, they have been able to take on responsibilities she held, too. “They have lightened my load to almost nothing,” she said. “I’m getting older now and the scaffold, I don’t like to be up in the scaffold.” The children are all looking at different paths in life moving forward, and a lot of them have an interest in medicine. The Harman’s oldest son, Ben, is in Auburn’s VCOM program, Kim works at the hospital as well and some of the recent Harman graduates are considering healthcare. Fostering remains a big part of the family’s life. “We typically take the older kids because nobody wants to take older fosters, everybody wants the babies, they want younger kids,” Rita said. “We’re pretty much the only people in town, and well, out of town, they call us from all kinds of counties, ‘please take a teen.’ And I think my love right now is these mom and babies because I get to be a nana, a grandma. I get to be nana
to the baby and mom to the mom. And so if we can help the moms along to get a great career and move on in life, then hopefully that cycle will be broken. “… My kids have grown up serving. As far as foster
kids go, they give up their clothes, they give up their rooms, they give up everything that they have to help take care of the kids. We could not be the foster parents we are today without them.
The Days of Summer
Story By Stacey Wallace Photos Contributed By Terry Ley and Mike Wallace
etirement. To most people, the word brings up images of sleeping late, rocking on the front porch sipping sweet tea, reading favorite novels, traveling and doing just about whatever you please. However, Dr. Terry C. Ley, Professor Emeritus from Auburn University, is not most people. A 40-year teaching veteran, Ley, 81, isn’t content to rock away his retirement. Instead, since 2003, Ley, along with co-teacher Cathy Buckhalt, has been teaching Writing Our Lives, a memoir writing class offered by Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Auburn University (OLLI at Auburn). Because of the pandemic, the class is now taught on Zoom. Students write about events from their lives and
share their stories with their classmates. A class anthology of memoirs is published once or twice a year. As a result of the class, Ley published a book of memoirs, Writing My Life: A Patchwork of Memories. Ley acknowledged that he missed teaching students. “Writing Our Lives keeps my hand in teaching; It’s been a positive thing for me,” he said. Ley is originally from Cedar Falls, Iowa. He received his bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Northern Iowa and his master’s degree and doctorate in English and Education from the University of Iowa. He taught English language arts at two high schools in Cedar Rapids. Later, he taught at a junior high for three years. Ley said that if he could go back to public school teaching, he would choose to teach seventh grade because
in the brook, each pebble creating countless ripples afterward.” The analogy was a powerful one. “I decided to become a teacher educator so that I could influence as many people as possible,” he said. After completing his doctoral work, Ley began to apply for positions. He wasn’t considering the South as a place of employment because of the region’s civil rights struggles. Images of George Wallace’s stance on segregation were still fresh in Ley’s mind, and both he and Mari could not abide by that viewpoint. Ley had previously interviewed for two positions, neither of which he felt comfortable in. One position was as a consultant at a large school district outside of Chicago; the district had only white students and didn’t want to change. “The other position was at the University of Cincinnati where I walked through areas which had been burned down during riots,” he said. “Also, the city had just released several hundred public school teachers a week before my interview.” Then, Al Atkins from Auburn University called Ley to ask him to interview for an opening in English Education. Atkins had seen Ley’s papers at a convention in
students at that age are more “malleable and forgiving.” Ley became a teacher because he loved school. “I was an only child, and school had other kids,” Ley said. “I was successful at school, and you return to where you were successful.” He started playing “teacher” at 8 years old, collecting his class rolls of students from the telephone book. Everything Ley ever wanted to do was verbal: teacher, minister, disc jockey, journalist. However, his pretend teaching was always a solitary adventure. He always dismissed his class for recess when his mother came down to the basement to do laundry. Ley and his wife Mari have been married for almost 52 years. They grew up in the same Presbyterian church in Cedar Falls. Mari taught for five years in Iowa. She later taught government to every senior at Opelika High School for 17 years and retired in 1990. When Ley began taking classes for his Master’s Degree, he met Dr. Norman Stageberg, one of his former professors. Stageberg asked Ley if he had ever considered becoming a teacher educator. Ley had not, but Stageberg encouraged him, saying, “Teaching is like tossing a pebble into a brook that creates countless ripples outward. Teaching teachers is like tossing handfuls of pebbles
Chicago and was impressed. So, Ley decided to interview at Auburn. “What I found at Auburn was open-hearted kindness and professional energy,” he said. Ley also loved the position. Instead of just teaching only one methods course and supervising student teachers, as most positions in English Education entailed, the Auburn position would also allow him to teach a secondary reading course and a methods class in the teaching of linguistics. Ley and Mari decided that Auburn was the place for them. However, while both Chicago and the University of Cincinnati had called and offered Ley their positions, he had not yet heard from Auburn. Ley called Atkins, who had been told that morning to offer him the position. The Leys moved to Auburn in 1974, where he began a 27-year career as a professor of English Education. In 1998, Ley was named a William T. Smith Distinguished Professor of Education. Ley said that he and Mari's greatest adjustments to
the move had to do with the poverty they observed and political issues. However, over the years, they formed strong friendships, and Ley’s career flourished. Iowa became a place to visit much-loved family and friends, but Auburn was now home. During his 27 years at Auburn University, Ley said one of his most satisfying experiences was working with 30 doctoral students over three to four years. “These students were a source of pride,” he said. “They were such good students and writers. Most of them taught classes for six to eight years while working on their doctoral degrees. In most cases, they went into in-field positions such as deans and administrators.” Ley said that the most important way that education has changed since he began teaching in 1961 is positive changes of integration and the use of technology. “Today’s technology is pretty terrific,” he said. “Gathering data is so much easier and faster.” Ley had to type his dissertation on a portable typewriter with carbon paper. He added that he would place the typed
copy in the refrigerator in case of a fire. “Excellent teachers should always have high expectations for their students and should have the ability to communicate with them,” he said. “They should be able to meet kids where they are. Also, teachers should possess a strong content background, a sense of humor, a sense of fairness, compassion and an awareness and understanding of students’ backgrounds. Teachers are repairing all the time; It’s about equity.” Ley decided to retire in 2001. He was still enjoying his work but knew that longevity did not run in his family. Besides, he and Mari wanted to travel. To celebrate his retirement, four of Ley’s former students invited their favorite professor to a “farewell tour” at Long Cane Middle School in LaGrange, Georgia. The teachers had a t-shirt designed in Ley’s honor. He met and taught his former students’ classes that day, and the event was covered by the local newspaper. As the Leys settled into retirement in 2001, they traveled extensively. Before the pandemic, they had traveled to 15 foreign countries. They have taken five trips
with Road Scholar and currently have reservations for visiting San Antonio, Texas, in 2022. Besides traveling again, Ley hopes to return to Wrights Mill Road Elementary School when pandemic protocols are lifted. Since 2003, he had worked with selected fourth and fifth graders, providing literacy support for the students, meeting with each of them twice a month for half an hour. “The children were chosen primarily because they could use some one-on-one time to shore up their reading and writing skills, their self-confidence and their positive attitudes toward communication,” he said. Ley has worked with more than 70 boys and girls so far. When asked what advice he would give brand new teachers in 2021, Ley said, “I would tell them to persevere, and we would talk about what the word means.” Ley said he can’t imagine teaching children virtually because it would be completely foreign to him. He plans to continue teaching for OLLI as long as he is able. No rocking chairs for him. He will persevere.
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Derby Day —24—
PHOTOS BY ROBERT NOLES
erby Day 2021 was held on May 1, at Storybook Farm. Less than a year after the previous Derby Day, the event looked a lot more normal after a year of COVID-19. Derby Day is Storybook Farm’s largest fundraiser of the year — and this year, it raised $25,160 through ticket prices and auctioned items. Auctioned items included sporting clays from Selwood Farm, an aerial tour for two, golf lessons at Indian Pines Golf Course, a vacation at Panama City Beach, a two-night stay at Pursell Farm, an autographed basketball by Bruce Pearl and more. Storybook Farm is a local organization that works to help adults with special needs through horseback riding. “Storybook Farm exists to bridge the gap between hope and hardship,” the website said. “We empower children ages two to young adulthood through equine-assisted activities, canine companionship and exploration in nature. We give childhoods back to children. Our vision is that all children have the opportunity to experience the dynamic relationship found in the human-animal bond.”
The Party’s In The Back Story By JD McCarthy Photos Contributed By Auburn Backyard Entertainment
re you looking to throw a party from the comfort of your own home but have the fun of minigolf, obstacle courses and giant TV screens? If so, Auburn Backyard Entertainment has everything you could hope for and more. Auburn Backyard Entertainment is a party rental and supply shop that allows you to transform your backyard for a day by renting its products. The packages include giant inflatable screens for movies or video games, mini golf holes, an American Ninja Warrior course, Nerf Wars and more. The best part? They will handle the setup and take down for you, according to owner Jackson Wolters. Jackson and his wife Amy came up with and launched the business last year in response to the COVID-19 pandemic as they struggled to come up with plans for their daughters’ birthdays. “When COVID first hit, we were trying to be as conscientious about health risks as possible and when we started to plan for our youngest daughter's birthday, it was kind of one of those things where this would be a really neat idea if we rented something,” Jackson said. However, there was only one company locally that rented party equipment out and they were already booked. The Wolters quickly realized that home
parties may soon be in much higher demand due to the restrictions of the pandemic. “We started playing with the idea,” he said. “My wife put it out to her mom friend group whether they would like to see more stuff and they said absolutely so we jumped right into it. [We] got a business license and ordered everything and here we are.” Before starting Auburn Backyard Entertainment, Jackson drove for Uber and Lyft but had to stop due to one of their daughters having bad asthma. Meanwhile, Auburn United Methodist, where Amy worked, stopped meeting in person. This left them with some extra time on their hands, so they started giving it serious thought last May. By June 1, 2020, they were open for business. While other businesses suffered from concerns around the pandemic, Auburn Backyard Entertainment was able to succeed because people are outside and can control who they are around. Jackson and Amy primarily get calls for birthday parties, but churches and other organizations also called as a way to safely gather. “It actually worked out perfect for us,” Jackson said. “Because it’s outside you can be as socially distanced as you want to be or not at all. So, we’ve had movie nights for church youth groups, we’ve done student government organizations at AUM and we’ve done a ton of private
birthday parties in people’s backyards. So, it worked out perfectly.” While most of their business is in the Auburn-Opelika area, Jackson has done several parties in Smiths Station and frequently goes to Montgomery. When the business first started, it was centered around movies and had two different sized screens that clients could rent which included everything you would need to watch the movie — projectors, speakers and the
its Tailgate package. This included a TV and tent for during the day and a bigger screen for the night game, something Jackson said people really enjoyed. With the weather starting to heat up, the company will start offering inflatable water slides and an inflatable slip ‘n’ slide. Both of which became available on June 1. Although they are not currently working on creating any other packages, Jackson admitted his wife is constantly trying to expand their products.
capabilities to watch a DVD or stream your movie. However, according to Jackson, they wasted little time in adding more services as the business has now transitioned to a more “all-around party gathering type of service.” This includes everything from the Nerf War package to a spa package. “We are trying to evolve this from just movies to just all-around entertainment,” he said. One of these evolutions took place during the football season, when Auburn Backyard Entertainment launched
“My wife is always looking at ways to expand and bring more things like that to our area,” he said. One source of the couple’s inspiration is their daughters, who were the reason the business started. “Our two oldest are in fourth and third grade, so we definitely try to pick their brains on what they would like or what their friends are doing for their birthdays,” he said. For more information about Auburn Backyard Entertainment, go to the Facebook page at facebook.com/ auburnbackyardentertainment.
COMING SOON!! DOWNTOWN OPELIKA 223 S. 8th Street, Unit B Find us on Facebook Axe Marks the Spot —31—
ADOBE STOCK PHOTO
ADOBE STOCK PHOTO
The Real ‘BUZZ’ In Lee County Story By Lofton Wheeles
here’s something truly “buzzworthy” going on in Lee County, and it’s not the type of “buzz” you’re thinking about! Damon Wallace is a local beekeeper in the area who has been doing this for nearly 20 years. Wallace is originally from Jonesboro, Georgia, and graduated from the University of Georgia. He and his family moved to the Lee County area in the mid1980s. Beekeeping is the maintenance of bee colonies by humans, typically through the use of hives — this is something that Wallace calls “a fascinating hobby.”
“When you study the honeybees, you will find that God made a fascinating little creature in that thing — they are absolutely fascinating,” Wallace said. “And as you learn a little bit more and it just goes on and on and it gets out of hand pretty quickly. They’re fascinating little creatures.” While working with Michelin at the time, Wallace became a certified beekeeper through Young Harris College in the University of Georgia Bee Institute. When Wallace turned 50 years old, he was naturally seeking something new to do. He then saw a listing in the local newspaper for an annual bee symposium held
PHOTO BY ROBERT NOLES
by Auburn University. “I was raised in sort of a rural environment, so it was kind of natural,” he said. “So I go to this thing and I don’t understand what they are talking about at all. And then at lunch outside, we were at the McWhorter building around campus and they were having an open hive demonstration — which means they were going to open the hive up and show you what’s going on. So they open that thing up and they don’t attack you or bother you at all. I noticed that one or two of them landed on me and I was in a short sleeve shirt. I noticed they landed on my arm — they didn’t bother me. I saw they had pollen on their legs and I was wondering ‘Where did that come from?’ So I started looking around and lo and behold, that tree’s blooming, this bush is blooming. So I said ‘heck, that’s a good thing to do’. … It was just finding something to do and I’ve been fascinated with it ever since for about 20 years.” Most people are concerned first with the products that result from beekeeping. However, Wallace said there’s a bit more to the activity than that. Wallace said that the pollination from the honeybees, “the greatest pollinator” help contribute to a portion of the
food we normally eat ranging from meat to vegetables. Aside from being the local beekeeper, Wallace also teaches beginning beekeeping courses over at the Cooperative Extension Office in Opelika — something he has been doing for the past fifteen years. During this time, he has encountered several misconceptions that novices have about the activity. “One of the bigger things I’ll hear so often is ‘I’m allergic to bees because they sting me and it hurts and I swell up’,” Wallace said. “Well, I don’t know about that. We’ve had epidemiologists — the guys that do the [research of] reactions and those sorts of things and we’ve learned that the venoms in these various insects — the yellowjackets, the wasps, the hornets, the bumblebee, the honeybee — that the venom is all different, and that just because you are allergic to one does not mean you are allergic to another.” Wallace also mentioned that the swarming of bees, something normally seen in animated shows and films, is also a common misconception people have when it comes to beekeeping. “We teach [the students] about the attitude of the bees,” Wallace said. “That has to do with the time of the year, time of day and type of day. We teach them
such things as a ‘good bee day’, which is nice, warm and sunshiny and it’s springtime. You can do an awful lot inside your beehives and not even see anything. “If you go out there on that same time of the year, same time of day, but it’s cloudy, overcast and it’s windy — they’ll eat you alive. So you need to suit up. You can wait to check them until the fall of the year, they are quite defensive then. You’ve got to suit up. So we teach them how the honeybees adapt and how to react accordingly.” When asked about his favorite part of beekeeping, Wallace talked about the natural aspect of it with great excitement. He said that during the sunrise and sunset of the early morning and later evening, respectively, the sunlight glistens on the bees and that they are beautiful to watch. However, beekeeping is not all honey and beeswax. The activity still requires manual labor and hard work. “The extraction process — getting the honey out of the hive — is a lot of work because it’s usually hot,” Wallace said. “You’re out there suited up and when I say hot I mean it’s 80 to 90 degrees because you’re
doing this in June or July. The bees don’t want to give that honey up very much. So it takes a little while to do that. Then, you’ve got the heavy boxes that you’ve taken off the hive and depending on the size that you have, it can range from 40 to 60 pounds.” When asked if those that are unsure, but curious of activity should try it, he immediately said “Oh Lord, yes!” “I strongly encourage it,” he said. “We also teach that beekeeping, as we practice it, has solid, proven techniques and that it’s also a hobby. And we also understand that while there are a lot of other life events — family, job and other activities that could go on — that beekeeping will seek its natural water level in that list of activities that you’ve got to do. “So we’ve had some that have done it for two to three years that can’t do it anymore and that’s fine. But lo and behold though, we’ve planted seeds. So later in their life when whatever that life event or life activities aren’t there anymore and they’ve got time, people can hopefully pick back up and run with it again.”
ADOBE STOCK PHOTO
Work it out at
Story By Lofton Wheeles Photos Contributed By AR Workshop
o you have the urge to create while making memories with like-minded, creative people? AR Workshop Auburn is the place in Lee County that will foster your inhibitions. AR Workshop Auburn is a do-it-yourself (DIY) workshop located at Ogletree Village in Auburn. The workshop specializes in working with and supplying raw materials for people to create their own home décor, according to AR Workshop Auburn Owner Kimeran Keahey. “It’s a franchise based out of North Carolina and there’s about 150 workshops nationwide now,” she
said. “We’re proud to able to bring it to Auburn because it’s such a fun place.” Keahey started the shop in the winter of 2020 because she wanted to bring her love of DIY projects to create a community of like-minded individuals and novices to the crafting world in Lee County. Additionally, she seeks to provide a place for people to express themselves through hand-crafted works. “I’ve always been into crafts and art projects,” she said. “So, it’s a passion that’s been inside me— I’ve just done it all my life. It’s kind of a fun way to be able to get together with community and to share that passion.
“I’m a creative person myself and it’s fun to share that, but it’s nice to have something in common with people … Our hands stay busy, and we really get to use them a lot. It’s a great place for community to come together.” Community is a force that is necessary in the human experience and it is a big part of running a place like AR Workshop Auburn. It is also a big part of why Keahey said she does what she does. “My favorite thing [about AR Workshop Auburn] is probably the people I get to meet,” she said. “It’s very personable and I feel like I’m having friends coming over to my house — to my space. And we just make it very personal. So, it’s not so much work or a job as it is just getting to communicate with other people.” However, there is something that made finding community challenging for many people across the country—the COVID-19 pandemic. AR Workshop Auburn faced the impact that many local businesses had to go through because of the pandemic; however, AR Workshop Auburn is getting back to making a
place for people to come together and craft. “It’s been a big challenge to get people to come out to the workshop because we opened right before COVID hit,” Keahey said. “It’s been slow trying to get people to come in, but people are getting vaccinated. It’s nice to see people finally getting out more — so that helps.” When looking at AR Workshop Auburn’s Facebook page, it is evident that the workshop gives people the opportunity to create many homemade products to make their living space feel more like a home. From blankets to a variety of wooden projects, AR Workshop Auburn will help you make it all. “The blankets are a lot of fun to make, but probably my favorite are the wood projects because there are so many different ways you can personalize them,” she said. “We have signs and trays and door hangers and porch signs and all kinds of different ways to use wood for home décor. That’s probably my favorite way to utilize all the raw materials because we can really personalize it to anybody.” While the shop opened in the winter of last year,
Keahey still envisions the workshop to be a place that gives the Lee County community a place to try something new in the form of crafting projects while making friends and finding a sense of community. She said she also wants to spread the word about the workshop and branch out into the area so it reaches that potential. “I’d like to get more involved in community,” she said. “We have our projects — our projects are friendly for kids and adults and I’d love to be able to take some projects to some more festivals and community events to provide some entertainment for some people that might not be able to come to AR Workshop Auburn. So, I’d love to be able to offer that to people who wouldn’t typically get to come in.” To get more information about AR Workshop Auburn, visit the Facebook page facebook.com/ arworkshopauburn.
Camping Out... or In? Story By Kayla Evans Photos Contributed by The GREAT Indoors
arm, sunny Alabama days are here, and there is nothing better than being outside. However, sometimes, the weather gets rough, and the party needs to be moved inside. The GREAT Indoors offers seven different experiences and has something for every occasion. They bring the party to you. “Our main specialties are sleepovers where we set up little tents for each camper,” said the owner Caroline Cutcliffe. “Each little camper gets a tent and mattress and all of the fun, coordinating decor to go along with it for different themes.”
Along with tents and mattresses for each sleepover, there are pillows, blankets, decorations, snack trays and more. There is also a variety of add-ons that can be included: DIY canvas kits, personalized cups and pillowcases, a popcorn machine and a photo booth with a printer. Cutcliffe has also partnered with Gigi’s Cupcakes to make specialized cakes and cookie kits to match the themes. “I partner with other companies as much as I can for certain types of add-ons only because I’m not the expert on those,” Cutcliffe said. “We’ve been really happy to have cookie kits with Gigi’s Cupcakes, and
they’ve also been fantastic about coordinating with our themes. So, if someone has a unicorn party, they will do the unicorn cake.” When the weather is nice and the party wants to be moved outside, The GREAT Indoors offers a variety of solutions. A backyard movie experience is perfect for a warm night under the stars. “We come in, set up the screen, the projectors and the sound,” Cutcliffe said. “Everyone gets their own chair and side tables, and we can add on different things like a popcorn machine, concession table and stand and try to make it like your own, private movie party.” They also offer a 16-foot bell tent that can fit about eight people
if the client is looking to stay the night outside or has a big area that they want to camp out on. Cutcliffe said that her husband, Wes, makes little picnic tables that they can set up with any theme for either the camp-out or movie experience. Any theme that a client can imagine can be set up for the party. The GREAT Indoors also has some set themes that clients can choose from. These include “Pretty Princesses,” “Utopia,” “Base Camp,” “In the Jungle,” “Let’s Glow Crazy” and the new release, “Harry Potter.” Many more themes are coming soon such as”Arctic Nights,” “Mermaid Dreams,” “A Night In Paris,” “Boom! Boom! Superheroes” and “All-Stars!”
Auburn and Alabama decorations are also something that can be added to the mix. “My favorite theme is probably the ‘The Jungle Safari’ theme,” Cutcliffe said. “It is just something that looks great whether you are doing it as a camp in or camp out, and I am a fan of leopard print.” The idea came to Cutcliffe in December 2019. She opened her doors in January 2020, and started taking reservations in the following March. She said that the idea was born from a mix of Pinterest and seeing cute sleepover spreads on the Internet. “Essentially, I just asked the question and looked at it and thought, ‘Okay, is anyone doing that here? This is precious,’” Cutcliffe said. “I looked around, and the closest anyone was doing this was really Montgomery or Atlanta.” Eight days after she started taking reservations, the country shut down due to COVID-19, Cutcliffe said. “I knew that as long as I was there waiting for people to take advantage of our concepts, that people would come when they were comfortable,” Cutcliffe said. “I had to be really patient with that.” Cutcliffe said that by July, many people were ready to do some safe things with their friends or do something different with their family since they could not go on vacation. “It was really fun to surprise some of the kids, who had been, of course, at home since March, with a camp-in at their house just as siblings,” Cutcliffe said. She has several plans for the future, including what she calls “rent-a-party.” She will work virtually with the client about party themes and ideas. The client can then pick up the party items from
her house and return them after. She said she will find all of the items to coordinate with the party idea. “If it is as simple as a dinner party with friends, and you just want to have some really nice chargers or you want a tablescape as something you can be really proud of, then that is something that I can help with,” Cutcliffe said. Cutcliffe is a mom of three boys and she said that The GREAT Indoors is her girly outlet. She has a background in event management, which she has been doing since she graduated from college. She is originally from the Atlanta area. “I love doing events,” Cutcliffe said. “I like the customer service, I like meeting everybody that I come in contact with. My kids are my main job, but I like doing this as kind of my fourth baby if you want to put it that way.” The GREAT Indoors is a great option for when the Alabama weather is perfect or for when it rains. For more information, go to www.thegreatindoorsao.com/.
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Let’s Plant A Garden Story By Hannah Lester Photos By Robert Noles
pring and summer means planting, getting your hands dirty and watching plants bloom and grow. According to Heath Davis, co-owner of the shop, the Potting Shed is a one-stop-shop for all of your gardening needs. “We’re a locally-owned garden center that tries to provide everything that someone would need,” he said. “We have a big selection of shrubs and trees and the best selection of
annuals, perennials and pottery anywhere around.” The Potting Shed has been an Auburn business for four years and just completed its fifth spring. “We just saw a need, especially on this side of town, but we draw people from Eufaula, we draw people from the lake, people from Montgomery,” Davis said. “It’s amazing how over the years that our clientele has built up. We just saw a need for a good, independent garden center in the area.”
Davis started the business with Co-Owner Justin Carlson. The two found one of the first challenges they had to face was finding a way to get the word out to people that the business existed. But, all businesses faced new challenges last year. And The Potting Shed was not immune to the problems most businesses faced during the COVID-19 pandemic. “It’s been challenging this year because a lot of stuff is made overseas and so we didn’t get everything we wanted but we’re making do with what we’ve got,” Davis said. “We still have a lot, we just haven’t gotten any clay pots yet … hopefully, in another year, we’ll be way closer to normal.” Spring is planting season — so it’s the busiest time of year for The Potting Shed. Now that it’s summer, you may find it’s a little less chaotic in the shop. “The chunk of income comes in during the spring, March, April and May is when you get your chunk, but we’re steady all year long … right now, this is like our football season,” Davis said. If you do not have space for a large garden — perhaps you live in a dorm, an apartment or an area without any land — there are still options for keeping some green around your home. The Potting Shed has house plants, too. “When the busy part of spring’s over, from like June on, the rest of the year, we extend our interior plants. We have more room to display them and so we order more and have a bigger
selection. That helps us during the season when everybody is coming in here to buy spring flowers when they know they can come out here and see a huge selection of the interior stuff.” The Potting Shed is not your average plant shop or a bigchain store. One of their draws is the large selection of pots and pottery, Davis said. “That’s not something you’ll ever see in the chain stores — quality pottery like that,” he said. Unlike chain stores, the plants too will be unique. Many chain stores have one regional supplier and each store receives the same selections. “They’re just not getting the variety that we do,” Davis said. “We buy from independent growers. In fact, our main flower grower and I went to college together at Auburn.” One of the more interesting plants you’ll find at The Potting Shed is trailing vinca. Vinca itself is common, Davis said, but trailing vinca is a little harder to find. A plus side to the pandemic was that most people had a lot more time at home to try out new hobbies — like gardening. “Last year was a lot of first-time gardeners, and then them coming back with their success stories and showing me pictures of what they did, I really enjoyed that,” Davis said. “ … They were hunting something to do with their time and they gardened for the first time and loved it. And most of them have returned and shared their stories.”
PUBLIC HOUSE FAVORITES SHEPHERD’S PIE - Seasoned ground beef. Peas. Carrots. Guinness gravy. Champ potatoes. Mozzarella. - 12 BANGERS & MASH* - Two Guinness Brats. Champ potatoes. Peppers. Onions. Guinness gravy. 12 GUINNESS STEW - Guinness gravy. Beef tenderloin. Carrots. Potatoes. - 10 CORNED BEEF HASH* - Traditional hash. Potatoes. Corned beef. Peppers. Onions. Fried egg. - 10 SPECKLED HEN MAC & CHEESE - Large Bowl of Old Speckled Hen English Ale infused house-made macaroni & cheese - 10 FISH & CHIPS* - Beer battered ﬁsh and fries. Lee County coleslaw. - 12 PORK SCHNITZEL* - Fried pork cutlets. Brandied mushroom cream sauce. Sauerkraut. Champ potatoes - 11 CHICKEN & CHIPS - Classic Ameri-Pub hand battered chicken tenders. Fries. Lee County coleslaw. - 11 SHRIMP & GRITS* - Guinness BBQ basted Gulf shrimp. Pancetta-garlic cream sauce. Creamy Carolina stone ground grits. - 16
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Sun-Kissed Picnics Story by Ann Cipperly Photos by Robert Noles and Abbey Crank
nder clear blue skies on a lazy summer day, plan a picnic to enjoy a day outdoors with family and friends at a park or lake. Our area offers many locations for a picnic, including our Auburn and Opelika parks, Kreher Preserve, Chewacla State Park, Lake Martin and nearby Callaway Gardens. Select a tranquil setting with sweeping vistas or a lake with breezes offering relief from sultry temperatures. Keep the picnic carefree with portable dishes that can be prepared ahead of time. Select unbreakable serving plates in bright, sun-kissed colors and wrap utensils in cheerful, patterned napkins. Be sure your picnic basket and cooler are stocked with everything for an enjoyable outdoor meal. For tasty sandwiches, prepare Wilma’s Chicken Salad enhanced with chopped apples. Select your bread of choice and add lettuce and sliced tomato, if desired. Flour tortilla wrap sandwiches with ham or turkey are easy to carry and eat, while butter cookies and flourless peanut butter cookies are fuss-free desserts. Sandwiches and salads need to be cold and well wrapped. Chill bottled water and other beverages at home before packing them into the cooler. Take an attractive tablecloth to cover a picnic table or to spread over a grassy area by a lake. As the afternoon winds down, linger a little longer to savor picture-perfect memories of a sun-drenched day with family and friends.
Oven-Fried Chicken Fingers 1½ chicken breast tenders Salt ¾ cup buttermilk 1/2 cup coarsely-crushed cornflakes 1/4 cup seasoned breadcrumbs 1 tsp. paprika 1/4 tsp. black pepper Vegetable oil Salt chicken and place in a bowl. Pour buttermilk over chicken, cover and refrigerate overnight or at least for two hours. Combine cornflakes, breadcrumbs, paprika and pepper. Dip chicken into cornflake mixture to coat. Spread a small amount of oil evenly in a shallow baking pan. Arrange chicken in a single layer. Bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes on each side or until done.
Picnic Essentials Be sure to have enough cold inserts and bags of ice in the cooler to keep food cold. Don’t forget to take hand sanitizers, wet wipes, paper towels, trash bags, napkins, paper or unbreakable plates and utensils. Safely wrap a small knife to take if needed for slicing. You may also need sunscreen lotion and insect repellent. Pack plenty of water bottles. Depending on where you are having a picnic, you may need to take a blanket or a folding chair.
Snacks Wash raw vegetables, cut them into easy-to-eat pieces and place them in plastic bags. Have plenty of snacks, such as graham crackers and fish-shaped crackers, in individual plastic bags to pass out to children. Take cookies that are easy to eat without any coating that could melt. For adults, pack strips of Swiss, cheddar cheese and other favorite cheeses, grapes and crackers.
Wilma’s Chicken Salad Deborah Jones
3 chicken breasts (organic, if possible) Salt and pepper to taste Scant cup good mayonnaise 1 chopped apple 1 chopped celery stalk 1 tsp. celery seed, optional Choice of bread Lettuce, sliced tomatoes, optional Gently boil chicken until cooked. While still warm, pull into chunks. Salt and pepper to taste. Add mayonnaise, chopped apple, celery and celery seed, if using. Serve on your choice of bread with lettuce and sliced tomatoes.
Carolyn’s Cheese Stuffed Celery Swirls 1 bunch celery 8 oz. cream cheese, softened ½ cup grated American or cheddar cheese
1 clove garlic, minced 1 Tbsp. minced onion 1 Tbsp. milk Salt to taste Separate celery into ribs; trim and wash. Combine cheeses and blend until smooth. Add remaining ingredients and thoroughly blend. Spread mixture in the center of each rib. Press three ribs together with cheese facing the center. This results in a center of cheese with celery completely surrounding it. Secure bundles with rubber bands. Chill for at least one hour. Remove bands and slice into ½ inch thick pieces. Can be made ahead.
Tortellini Salad Laurie Gilbert
1 bag frozen tortellini (use tri-color if you can find it) Cook tortellini according to package directions. Cool under cold water. Marinated artichoke hearts to taste Sundried tomatoes in olive oil, chopped
1 small can sliced black olives, drained Parmesan cheese to taste A good Italian dressing to taste Freshly ground black pepper and salt to taste, if needed. Combine all ingredients. Store in refrigerator until ready to serve. May need to add more Italian dressing before serving. Serves six to eight.
Ham or Turkey Wraps with Cheese and Lettuce ½ cup mayonnaise mixed with 2 Tbsp. mustard Four 10-inch flour tortillas ¾ lb. thinly-sliced ham or turkey 1 cup (4 oz.) shredded Swiss or mozzarella cheese 1½ cups shredded leaf lettuce 1 or 2 tomatoes, seeded and chopped 1 small, chopped Vidalia onion, optional Salt and pepper to taste Spread mayonnaise-mustard evenly over one side of each tortilla, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Layer ingredients in order; season with salt and pepper. Roll up tortillas; cut in half diagonally, and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Serves four.
Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies 1 cup brown sugar (can use white sugar) 1 cup crunchy or smooth peanut butter 1 large egg 1 tsp. baking soda 1 tsp. vanilla Mix brown sugar and peanut butter; stir in remaining ingredients. Drop by tablespoons onto parchment-lined or greased cookie sheets. Bake at 350 degrees for 12 minutes or until puffed. Cool cookies on cookie sheets before removing.
Butter Cookies 1 cup butter, softened 1 cup sugar 2 cups all-purpose flour ¼ cup cold water 2 tsp. vanilla ¼ tsp. soda Cream butter and sugar; add flour. This will look crumbly or coarse. To the ¼ cup water, add vanilla and soda. Sprinkle liquid over crumb mixture; blend into mixture. Chill until dough is easy to handle. Divide dough into two. Roll each into a log and freeze. When ready to bake, slice cookies very thin while still frozen. Bake at 350 degrees on ungreased cookie sheets for 8 minutes or until edges are brown.
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uburn has two farmers markets this year to keep you happy and munching on your veggies!
If you do your shopping on the weekend, you’re in luck. City Market is held every Saturday through August from 8 to 11 a.m. City Market is held at Town Creek Park located at 1150 S. Gay St.. For more information, visit the city website www.auburnalabama.org/citymarket.
Market at Ag Heritage Park
If you tend to be busy on the weekends, check out Auburn’s second farmer’s market: the Market at Ag Heritage Park. This is a Thursday farmer’s market taking place all summer through Aug. 12. Visit each week from 3 to 6 p.m. at 580-B S. Donahue Drive. For more information, visit: www. agriculture.auburn.edu/outreach/ag-heritagepark/the-market/.
f you just can’t get enough of fresh, local products, Opelika has not one, not two but THREE farmers markets.
Every Tuesday, visit O Grows at 1103 Glenn St. through August from 3 to 6 p.m. Visit www.ogrows.org for more information. Now, for a different experience, visit either of Opelika’s retail farmer’s markets.
Parkway Farmers Market
Parkway Farmers Market is open every day
but Sunday — so if you are running low on something, just pop by any time of the day from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The market is located at 2180 First Ave., Opelika. For more information, visit: www. parkwayfarmersmarket.com
Opelika Farmers Market
The Opelika Farmers Market is another venue that’s open every day but Sunday — with a little bit earlier start. The market is open from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. every day and is located at 411 S. 10th St., Opelika. For more information, visit: www. opelika.org.
miths Station also has a farmers market and it is conveniently located right off Highway 280.
Grantham’s Market is located at 275 Lee Road 430 across from the Flea Market in Smiths Station. The market sells in season fruits, vegetables, local honey and boiled peanuts.
Because We Care
Everywhere you look, you see AuburnBank employees volunteering and serving to make our community better and to help it grow. That’s because AuburnBank cares. Since 1907, AuburnBank has cared about and invested in this community, which is why we have such a strong presence in local charitable organizations like Habitat for Humanity, United Way and the Food Bank of East Alabama, to name a few. We’re a local bank with deep roots. We care deeply about our community, so just imagine how much we care about our customers. AuburnBank. Your Partner. Your Neighbor. Your Friend. BANK OFFICES: AUBURN • OPELIKA • PHENIX CITY • NOTASULGA • VALLEY
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ust-picked ripe tomatoes, crisp green beans, corn and other summer vegetables gathered from the garden provide nutritious, healthy dishes. Whether they are grilled, steamed, oven-roasted or quickly sautéd, fresh vegetables are delectable when prepared in a variety of ways. Vegetables can be simply cooked or combined in casseroles. If you are having a cookout, grill the vegetables too. Slice squash, zucchini and eggplant lengthwise. Lightly coat them with olive or vegetable oil and
Story By Ann Cipperly Photos By Robert Noles season with salt and pepper. Oil the grill grates. Grill vegetables over medium-hot coals, turning them a couple of times. Cook for about eight minutes or until the desired doneness. Corn can be grilled in the husks or after removing the husks and silk, which gives the corn a smoky flavor. To grill without the husks, brush olive or vegetable oil on corn and place over coals, turning frequently. Cook for about 12 minutes or until cooked to desired doneness. To grill corn in the husk, peel off the first layers of husks, leaving just
a few. Cook over hot coals, turning often, for about 10 minutes. To serve, remove husks and serve with softened butter, salt and pepper. You can also roast corn on the grill. Coat corn with melted butter and season with salt and pepper. Wrap each corn cob in foil and roast on a grill for about 15 minutes, turning often. Corn on the cob can also be roasted in the oven. Remove husks and silk from corn, then coat with softened butter and season. Place on a baking pan and roast at 400 degrees for 20
minutes; turn corn over and roast an additional 10 minutes. Another oven method is to cover the corn in softened butter and wrap the corn in foil. Roast at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Roasting other summer vegetables in olive oil can be easy. This method works well for asparagus, green beans, yellow squash, zucchini, whole okra, carrots, cherry tomatoes, new potatoes, wedges of sweet potatoes and quartered onions. To oven-roast, place vegetables on a large sheet pan with a rim. Assorted vegetables can be cooked together. To cook yellow squash and whole okra, place sliced squash at one end of the pan and add quartered Vidalia onions. Place whole okra in one layer on the other half of the pan. Drizzle olive oil over all and coat vegetables. Sprinkle kosher or sea salt over all veggies. Roast vegetables in a 375 degree oven for about 20 to 25 minutes or until cooked, stirring or turning over halfway through cooking time. If roasting asparagus, cook for eight to 10 minutes until fork tender, but still crisp. Green beans will take about 15 minutes, while carrots will cook in about 20 minutes. New potatoes and wedged sweet potatoes will take 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. New potatoes can be cooked whole, halved or quartered and roasted with sweet onion wedges and rosemary. Fork test a few times during cooking. Vegetables can also be sautéd in olive oil, steamed or boiled in a small amount of water until tender. When making squash casseroles, be sure to cook the onion with the squash in boiling water before combining it with other ingredients. Otherwise, the onion will not cook while baking in the casserole. This summer, add more healthy vegetables to your menus. Try different cooking methods to see which one your family prefers.
Tomato-Zucchini-Corn Bake Carol Duncan
1 lb. sliced zucchini or yellow squash 1½ lb. sliced very ripe tomatoes, peeled Dash of salt and pepper Dash of Italian Seasoning 1½ cups fresh corn kernels ½ cup Panko crumbs ⅓ cup Parmesan cheese, finely grated Basil, fresh, julienned Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a two-quart shallow baking dish with olive oil cooking spray. Layer vegetables, zucchini, tomatoes and corn with a dash of salt, pepper and Italian Seasoning. Sprinkle Panko crumbs and Parmesan cheese on top. Bake 20 minutes uncovered, then cover and bake 20 minutes more. Garnish with basil. Serves six.
Stuffed Squash 2 yellow squash 2 tomatoes, seeded and chopped 2 green onions, chopped 2 Tbsp. fresh parsley 2 cloves garlic, minced ½ cup breadcrumbs 1 cup Parmesan cheese, divided 2 Tbsp. olive oil Salt and pepper to taste Slice squash into halves lengthwise; scoop out enough of the pulp to form a shell. Reserve 6 Tbsp. of pulp. Combine reserved pulp with remaining ingredients, using half of Parmesan cheese. Stuff shells with filling; top with remaining Parmesan cheese. Place on a greased baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until tender. Makes four servings.
Mexican Street Corn
Southern Fried Okra
Dr. Mark Neighbors
1/4 cup mayonnaise 1/4 cup sour cream or Mexican crema 1/2 cup finely crumbled Cotija or feta cheese, plus more for serving ½ tsp. ancho or guajillo chili powder, plus more for serving 1 medium clove garlic, finely minced (about 1 teaspoon) ¼ cup finely chopped cilantro leaves and tender stems 4 ears shucked corn 1 lime, cut into wedges Prepare grill. Combine mayonnaise, sour cream or crema, cheese, chili powder, garlic, and cilantro in a large bowl. Stir until homogeneous and set aside. When the grill is hot, place corn directly over the hot side of grill and cook, rotating occasionally, until cooked through and charred in spots on all sides, about eight minutes total. Transfer corn to bowl with cheese mixture and use a large spoon to evenly coat corn on all sides with mixture. Sprinkle with extra cheese and chili powder and serve immediately with lime wedges.
Coating is also good for frying sliced green tomatoes and yellow squash. Fresh tender okra, ½ to ¾ inch pieces Wet mix: 1 cup water 1 cup buttermilk 1 beer Dry mix: 4 cups cornmeal ½ cup flour Salt and pepper to taste (I use about a Tbsp. of each) 1 tsp. onion powder Heat enough vegetable oil in a heavy deep pot or deep fryer to allow okra to float and maintain a constant temperature of 350 degrees. Place okra in wet mix and then into dry mix. Sift the excess dry mix and then place in oil. Okra should not clump but be in individual pieces. When golden brown, remove and drain on newspaper or paper towels. Tips: The key to the okra is keeping dry ingredients dry. Once it starts getting lumpy, it is better to start over with the cornmeal and flour mixture. Don’t stir okra too much, as the coating will fall off.
Layered Eggplant Stacks
1 large or two medium eggplants, sliced 1 or 2 tomatoes, sliced 1 or 2 large onions, sliced Salt ¼ cup olive oil ¼ to ½ lb. sliced mozzarella cheese In a baking dish, layer eggplant slices topped with slices of tomato and onion. Sprinkle with salt; drizzle with olive oil. Bake in a 425 degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes. Top with mozzarella cheese slices. Bake an additional 10 minutes or until cheese is melted. If desired, stacks can be seasoned with basil or oregano.
Squash Casserole with White Cheddar 1 onion, thinly sliced 2 lbs. squash, thinly sliced 1 tsp. salt Pepper to taste 2 eggs ½ cup milk 8 oz. white cheddar cheese, grated 1 Tbsp. butter In a saucepan, cover squash and onion with water; boil until tender, about 10 minutes; drain. Arrange squash in a baking dish. Season with salt and pepper. In a small bowl, combine eggs, milk and cheese. Pour over squash; dot with butter. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
Linda’s Tomato Pie Peggy Dyar
9-inch deep-dish pie shell, baked according to package directions and cooled 3 medium tomatoes, sliced into ½ inch slices and drained on paper towels 2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese ½ cup mayonnaise ½ tsp. salt 2 Tbsp. fresh chopped basil or 1 Tbsp. dried 3 Tbsp. sliced green onions 6 pieces bacon, cooked and crumbled (or 1/3 cup Hormel Real Bacon Pieces) Arrange sliced tomatoes on several layers of paper towels and sprinkle lightly with salt. Let tomatoes drain for 45 minutes. Mix the basil, onion, mayonnaise, salt, bacon and 1 cup of cheese and set aside. Sprinkle remaining 1 cup of cheese on the bottom of cooked, cooled pie crust. Layer the drained tomatoes on top of the cheese in pie crust. Spread the mayonnaise mixture over the tomatoes, spreading and sealing to the edges of the crust. Bake in a 350 degree pre-heated oven for 45 to 50 minutes. Check pie after 30 minutes and cover pastry edges lightly with foil strips if browning too quickly. Cool 5 to 10 minutes before slicing so that juices have time to set.
461 Opelika Road, Ste. A, Auburn Serving Lee County for 25 years
A Fresh Take on TexMex South of the Border North of the Tracks in Downtown Opelika
870 N. Railroad Avenue
www.lacantinaopelika.com FAMILY-OWNED • LOCALLY-SOURCED BEEF
KageFit, in Opelika, Alabama, is your Premiere Family Fitness Academy! KageFit offers martial arts classes to get you and your family in shape and looking good. KageFit also offers boxing, Muay Thai, and Brazilian Ju-Jitsu to go along with the KageFit fitness program. Now is the time to join us for fitness. You won’t be crowded and fighting for space in our 6000 square foot facility. Enjoy the separation between the kids and adults.
3613 Pepperell Parkway, Opelika
A Community Affair
Story By Natalie Salvatore Photos By Hannah Lester And Contributed By Savannah Woodall
or over 50 years, the Community Garden at Auburn University has strengthened the relationship between the university and the surrounding community. The garden’s land serves multiple uses, from providing public garden spaces to growing local produce. The crops are sold to local restaurants and donated to those in need. Since approximately 1970, the garden has been striving to alleviate food insecurity while educating the public on sustainable agriculture. The various partner organizations the garden works with help prepare and distribute the local produce being donated.
The garden offers plot rentals, ranging from 90 to 900 square feet in size. These plots allow for those who do not have the space to garden to be able to do so. Prices start at $52 per year. The gardening season for this year has begun and ends next February. Currently, all of the plots are rented out, but those interested can join their waitlist to be notified if plots become available later on in the year. The garden also teaches gardening classes, hosts volunteers and sells some of their local produce to individuals and local restaurants. In late 2016, the Campus Dining Office assumed responsibility for the garden and has been in charge
ever since. Marley Halter, the garden manager, is very passionate about the garden and oversees all of its services. The day-to-day tasks reside in her care, besides daily maintenance help from a few university students. “We have a huge diversity of folks who garden and learn with us, from college freshmen to families with kids to retirees; from folks who’ve never gardened before in their lives to Alabama natives,” Halter said. “My personal mission is to bring as many people into the fold as I can. I just want to see everyone gardening, whether it be with us, at home or in their apartment windowsill.” With this job, Halter reaches a diversity of people and said she loves to learn new things. Their next big project is to build an ADA-accessible gardening space with the help of Auburn building science students. One of its most impactful contributions, the produce donations to the surrounding community, is thanks to the monetary donations and volunteer labor from citizens. Approximately 1,500 pounds of fresh produce was
donated to the community, to students through the Campus Kitchens Project at Auburn and to the East Alabama Food Bank, as well as to a variety of other community organizations and food pantries. Halter expressed the true gratitude the garden has for its donors and volunteers. Without them, they would not be able to provide the nutrient-dense, fresh produce to hundreds of food-insecure people throughout the community. As expected, the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the Garden both positively and negatively. She said the garden has a lot more plot renters, as people are excited to be outside. With the worry about food access at the beginning of last year, people were also inclined to garden more. With people refraining from gathering, the garden had to host more online events as it adapted to life during the pandemic. Yet, people were still encouraged and guided by the garden’s amenities and educational resources. “I prefer hands-on learning, so this was difficult for me
personally to connect with folks,” she said. “But now, we’re thankfully back to being able to do more in-person events and classes, and we’ve had a good response so far this year.” Halter said since the Garden is all about strengthening relationships, as well as community building, the pandemic affected these concepts for a while. “But, I see our community coming back stronger than ever and supporting each other, and that warms my heart,” she said. Halter encourages anyone in the community
different volunteer days, gardening webinars and community days. The Garden’s current university partners, Aramark and Campus Kitchens, also are involved in giving back to the community through events. To learn more about the Garden and its upcoming festivities, visit www.aub.ie/ communitygarden. Halter said with an event going on almost every week throughout the year, there is always something to get involved in. On the website, there are photos, information on rental plots,
to get involved in any way they can. The garden is always looking for volunteers to help in their donation plots. Volunteers invest their time in helping feed their Auburn neighbors and can garden without having to rent a plot. Groups, organizations or individuals are welcome and encouraged to explore the various opportunities. Past volunteering events have included
opportunities to donate and many links for information and involvement. The CGAU is located on Auburn University’s campus, at 1161 W. Samford Avenue. It is right across the street from the Facilities Management Complex and can be found on the campus map. Looking ahead, the garden is planning on moving to a new location in 2022.
Trusted. Committed. Banking Forward. South State Bank and CenterState Bank have joined together to create one of the leading regional banks in the Southeast. As trusted partners, we are committed to providing more locations, enhanced products and services and innovative digital banking technology to make our customers’ lives easier and more convenient. We’ve provided financial solutions to individuals, families and businesses throughout the Southeast for more than 100 years. Both companies were built on the same founding principles of relationship banking and investing in the communities we serve. It’s the commitment to these values that made us the strong and successful companies we are today and these values will continue to guide us in the future.
Together, we’re Banking Forward.
701 Second Avenue Opelika, AL 36801
2443 Enterprise Drive Opelika, AL 36801
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South State Bank and CenterState Bank, N.A. have merged to become South State Bank, N.A. Please visit BankingForward.com to learn more.
Hilyer & Associates, CPAs
1750 Opelika Road, Auburn
COME VISIT OUR NEW STORE.
Je�fery A. Hilyer,
Attorney at Law and Certified Public Accountant
Jackie H. Moon, CPA Erin K. Arrington, CPA H. David Ennis, SR., CPA Patti C. Davis, CPA We're Open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday
614 2nd Ave, Opelika, AL 36801
DEEP DIVING Story By Hannah Lester Photos Contributed By Shane Blanton —80—
here’s a whole underwater world waiting to be explored and Adventure Sports, Inc. wants to help you get there. The dive shop opened in Auburn in 1973 and since then, has been providing lessons, equipment and trips all around the world. Maybe you knew that students at Auburn University had the opportunity to take scuba diving as course credit — but did you know it’s these same instructors offering courses through the city of Auburn? Bill Washington, a swim coach at Auburn University, started the company about 50 years ago, said the current Manager Wade Lloyd. “His main thing was diving, he was really one of the pioneers when diving got started in the early 60s,” he said. “… He just enjoyed it so much, he approached the university and said, ‘Hey, can we teach a diving class?’ And they went for it and here we are, many years later.” Adventure Sports Inc. takes divers from beginner through advanced. “When scuba first got started it was a dangerous, kind of daredevil sport,” Lloyd said. “And now it has evolved into a sport that most anybody can do. We take young kids to senior citizens diving and everybody does well.” Here’s what to expect if you take a class, specifically the beginner Open Water Class (Scuba I),
through Adventure Sports: First, there’s a swimming test. To be able to dive, you do need to know how to swim. “If you get through that, what we do is we break you up into smaller groups, sometimes just two people, sometimes just one, put you with an instructor and that instructor takes you from A to Z,” Lloyd said. “They take you from learning how to put your gear together, to getting you in the pool for the first time, to going through all the skills that we learn to make you more comfortable using your gear underwater.” Now, expect a little travel too. If you’re in the beginning class, you’ll visit a freshwater spring in Ponce de Leon, Florida. “We get down to 25, 30 feet, we’re doing our skills that you have to perform in open water to show that you know how to do the skills and then the next day we go out in the gulf on a boat out of Panama City and get down to 50 or 60 feet and look at some wrecks that are down there, see some fish and hope everyone has a good time with that,” Lloyd said. If you get certified, and subsequently bit by the diving bug, don’t worry — Adventure Sports has a lot more to offer. Scuba II is next, which is a little more advanced. “That has the possibility to take you up, if you have enough dives logged, to be either an advanced
open water diver or a master diver, just depending on how many dives you get logged,” said one of the instructors, Shane Blanton. “You have to have 24 logged dives for advanced open water and you have to have 50 for master.” In this class, you’ll learn more about navigation, diving at night, using Nitrox, deeper diving and stress
and rescue and react right (first aide). But, that is not all Adventure Sports has to offer. If you’re still interested in diving, you can take Scuba III. “Scuba III is where you transition from being just a diver into a dive pro if you choose to be one,” Blanton said.
Graduation from Scuba III essentially means you could take on a career in diving if you so chose, he said. There are twelve to fourteen instructors right now — a few of whom got their start at Adventure Sports, including Lloyd and Blanton. “I had two good buddies of mine that were in high
school, they were a year ahead of me and when they graduated high school, they took the summer program that we offer through the rec program, and got certified and came back and said, ‘Man, you gotta do this,’” Lloyd said. “‘This is awesome. You gotta do it, you gotta do it.’ So the next year, when I graduated, I took the class over the summer and just fell in love
with it and have been doing it ever since.” Having been with the shop for a long time, Lloyd has been on a lot of the trips. His favorite dive trip is to Cozumel, Mexico. And while the diving is great, he said, it’s the people that make the trip special. “The diving is really good, don’t get me wrong, but I’ve been going down there so many years that I’ve got friends that are down there and we go do the untouristy things that most people don’t do when they’re down there, but the diving is phenomenal,” he said. One of his favorite diving experiences, however, is the reef around the Blue Hole of Belize. Another is the Bloody Bay Wall, Little Cayman, Cayman Islands. “I get to go do this stuff and it’s called work,” he laughed. Blanton had learned to dive while in military service but wanted to improve his skills after moving to Auburn. Now, he’s an instructor for the instructors, teaching people how to become dive instructors. Diving is a family activity for Blanton. His wife and
oldest son are both instructors and his youngest son is working toward that goal as well. Since becoming a dive instructor in 2004, Blanton has traveled all over the world for dives, to Cozumel, Mexico; to Grand Cayman; to Saint Martin; to Roatán; to Jamaica; to the Bahamas; to Cancun; to the Keys and all over Florida. One of Blanton’s favorite dives involves a week aboard a sailboat: Blackbeard’s Liveaboard Cruise. “It is a sailboat we go on in the Bahamas,” he said. “The diving is amazing. You do a ton of dives, just a real intimate setting.” Blanton encouraged anyone who’s interested to give diving a go with Adventure Sports. “You never know until you try,” he said. “My wife was nervous for years and now she’s got over 400 dives and she’s a dive instructor.” For more information on Adventure Sports, Inc. visit the website www.adventuresportsauburn.com or stop by the shop at 747 E. Glenn Avenue.
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Expository Preaching Reverent Worship Historic Liturgy
Piedmont Fertilizer Co. Inc. 201 2nd Ave. • Opelika, AL SINCE 1910
Nothing better for your lawn exists
d PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH IN AMERICA
Story By Wil Crews Photos By Robert Noles and John Hillsman
Lillie Mae at Waverly 280 Boogie, 2021
Summer Swing 2018
ee County is known for many things. In the summer, the bundle of neighborhoods, communities and cities which make up 616 square miles of land in east-central Alabama, becomes a vibrant hotbed for live music. Having spent the better portion of a year and a half living with new terminology such as quarantine, lockdown and social distancing, the return of something as timeless as live music serves as a welcome symbol of normalcy. With seemingly the worst of the pandemic behind us, Lee
County has big plans to feature live music this summer, from sizeable shows to your everyday open-mic night. Whether you wish to attend a concert, enjoy some added ambiance at your dinner or just gather with friends and sing until your heart can’t bear it anymore, Lee County has something for you. *The following is a non-comprehensive list of musical concerts, music-related entertainment venues and some of the well-known restaurants in Lee County that feature live music.
Opelika’s Summer Swing:
Summer Swing is a free community concert sponsored by the Opelika Parks and Recreation
Summer Swing 2018
Department, happening every Tuesday until August 3 at 7 p.m. at Monkey Park in Opelika. Concert goers can expect to hear a variety of music genres depending on the day they attend. From the oldies and the goodies, to turn-of-the-century hits and independent artists with original music, there’s a night for everyone. Opelika Band Boosters will be cooking hamburgers and hotdogs for a nominal fee and Center State Bank of Opelika will provide complimentary lemonades. There’s also a vintage train ride for the children from 6:30 to 7 p.m. for those who arrive early. Bring a quilt or lawn chairs to enjoy this relaxing evening of musical fun and fellowship. For more information: www.opelika-al.gov/746/Summer-Swing.
Music for a Summer’s Eve
St. Dunstan’s Episcopal Church is excited to present their Music for a Summer’s Eve concert series starting June 3. Head over to St. Dunstan’s every Thursday evening from 5:30 to 7 p.m. for free entertainment and great music. Local and semi-local musicians from a wide variety of genres - classical music, singersongwriters, traditional Irish music and more will play music from the church’s porch. All are invited to bring friends and pull up a lawn chair, or just pause and listen for a while. Events are free but tips are warmly appreciated. This event runs through August 19. For more information: www.aotourism.com/Event/41614/Music-for-aSummers-Eve/.
The Sound Wall The Sound Wall is a multi-purpose audio/video production studio and event space neatly located in downtown Opelika. Formerly a Victorian home built in 1907, owners Rob and Jen Slocumb have completed major restorations to bring the vibe to The Sound Wall. The space is playing host to several musical performances this summer. Within walking distance from downtown Opelika’s eateries, the Sound Wall is the perfect venue to enjoy a summer concert and a nice meal afterward. For more information on the different events, visit www. thesoundwallopelika.com/ events-1.
Lillie Mae at Waverly 280 Boogie, 2021
Located at 450 E. Thach Ave. in Auburn, the notfor-profit, volunteer effort Sundilla concert series provides original acoustic music in an intimate, gracious setting where it can be enjoyed by performers and listeners alike. Three concerts are scheduled for this summer. Crowes Pasture, an escapist folk duo whose instrumental style can best be described as “a banjo-guitar romance,” is scheduled to play on June 10; Kim Richey, a singer-songwriter with a distinctly American sound, is scheduled to perform on July 16; Michael Reno Harrell, an award-winning songwriter whose performances can
be compared to his grandaddy’s pocket knife: well warn and familiar feeling, but razor-sharp and with a point, is slotted to perform on July 30. For more information, visit www.sundillamusic.com/.
Standard Deluxe A little bit of folk and a little bit of rock-n-roll, the Standard Deluxe is a concert venue conveniently located just outside of Opelika in the Waverly community. Despite its name, this rowdy outside setting is far from your standard event space. Its back-home layout lends itself to a honky-tonk tavern feel. Hosting eight concerts this summer, the Standard Deluxe is the hidden gem of live music in Lee County. For more information, visit www. standarddeluxe.com/live-music.
Rock ‘N Roll Pinball This arcade claims to be all about pinball, but Rock ‘N Roll Pinball knows how to do live music, too. Affordable, fun and vintage, 28 pinball machines are available for your playing pleasure. With its
comfortable, friendly atmosphere, Rock ‘N Roll pinball brings a unique experience to downtown Opelika. Live music is held in “Jailhouse Music Hall,” rocking every Saturday night. Get a $15 wristband to check it out — and play pinball — or just get a $5 wristband for the music hall. Located at 815 S. Railroad Ave. on Main Street in Opelika, you can find the business’s hours on Facebook. For more information, visit www. rocknrollpinball.com/.
La Cantina La Cantina is downtown Opelika’s Tex-Mex restaurant that brings South of the Border flavor North of the tracks. They provide live music every Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights on their outdoor dining patio
Kidd Blue at Summer Swing 2018
The Rangers at Auburn City Market, 2021
from 6 to 8 p.m., La Cantina is open from 3 to 9 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. The restaurant is located at 870 N. Railroad Ave.
Wild Wing Café Calling all music and wing lovers! Wild Wing Café, located at 3040 Capps Way in Opelika, offers great food and a variety of musical performances through their Friday Night Lights live music promotion happening every Friday. .
IBP Located at 833 S. Railroad Ave. in Opelika, Irish
Bred Pub offers live music every Friday and Saturday starting at 9 p.m. at their upstairs bar. This classy, Gaelic establishment has an elegant, relaxed vibe, with its culturally appropriate, yet creative period décor placing customers in a library-like setting that is perfect for a drink, bite to eat or, of course, live music.
Eighth & Rail
Eighth and Rail is a premium restaurant and entertainment venue, providing professional stage and sound equipment while striving to bring customers the best in visual and performing arts, enhancing their experience in the cozy, jazz lounge atmosphere. Dedicated to the local music and arts scene, Eighth & Rail’s event calendar and stage reflect the very best of Auburn-Opelika regional talent. As a proud
reserved seating from 8 to 11 p.m. Rated the number one bar by Alabama Magazine several times since its opening, Piccolo is a great place to enjoy a cocktail before dinner or to have a quick meal from the small bite menu. Leather club chairs, a cozy fireplace and comfy banquettes serve as a relaxing getaway in a comfortable, clubby environment. For more information or to book your experience, visit www. aricciacucina.com.
A Matter of Taste
Cedric Burnside at Waverly 280 Boogie, 2021
Located at 2368 Lee Road in Smiths Station, A Matter of Taste is a bar and grill that provides extraordinary homemade flavors for everyone. Customers can stop by and enjoy the full bar, along with live entertainment that features local singers, D.J.’s or a real crowdpleaser, karaoke (with cash prizes) on Wednesday nights.
partner of Alyman Independent Marketing, Eighth & Rail hosts several events designed to invest in Opelika’s local community and musicianship. Eighth & Rail is located at 807 S. Railroad Ave. in Opelika.
Ariccia & Piccolo Piccolo, the area’s only authentic jazz lounge, is located in the restaurant Arricia Cucina Italiana inside the Auburn Hotel. The lounge is offering the return of live jazz music this summer. The experience is ticketed at $10 per person with
Kidd Blue at Summer Swing 2018
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Jeffcoat Trant Funeral Home, 52 Kage Fit, 73 Key Commercial Group, 3 La Cantina, 73 LIVE Lee, 7 Noles Photography, 4 O Grows, 98 OLD Inc. Business Brokers, 98 Oline Price, Lee County Revenue Commissioner, 17 Opelika Sportsplex Aquatic Center, 99 Phillpott Heating and Air, 51 Piedmont Fertilzer Co. Inc., 89 Price Small Engine, 44 Rob’s Ribs, 51 SouthState Bank, 78 Taylor Made Designs, 60 The Denson Group, 60 The Gallery on Railroad, 61 Trinity Presbyterian Church, 89 Whitt’s Auto, 73
O Grows Farmers Market is open every Tuesday through August 1103 Glenn St. in Opelika 3 to 6 p.m.
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