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Beyond the Limits Life’s “New Normal” Isn’t Keeping the Artist From His Work

By June Mathews

Journal photo by Jordan Wald

Life isn’t what it used to be for Paul Ware. ¶ Before having a brain hemorrhage in October 2014, Ware was a busy mergers and acquisitions attorney at Bradley, a nationwide law firm based in Birmingham. “It happened completely out of the blue one day as I was driving to work,” he said. “It was pretty close to fatal, and I spent several weeks in the hospital and another six weeks in inpatient rehab. Since then I’ve done about a year and a half of intensive outpatient rehab.” The neurological event affected the motor functions on Ware’s left side, leaving him with

Paul Ware, along with many other notable artists, will be exhibiting in the Riverchase Loves Artists show, Feb. 4 at the Riverchase Country Club.

See WARE, page 9 INSIDE

MAGIC KINGDOM MEETS MAGIC CITY New BBG Director Brings Disney Experience to the Gardens PAGE 6

HOMEWARD BOUND Little Professor Plans Move Back to the ‘Heart of Homewood’ PAGE 22

OUT OF AFRICA CBS Teacher of the Year Makes Connections from Uganda to the U.S. PAGE 24

Photo special to the Journal

2 • Thursday, January 26, 2017 ACS Relay for Life Community Manager Malinda Williams, center, with Vestavia Hills High School Relay for Life chairs CC Daniels and McKinley Rohrer.

It’s Time to Take Action

Relay for Life Kicks off Over the Mountain

Relay For Life is the signature fundraiser for the American Cancer Society. Relay is staffed and coordinated by volunteers in more than 5,200 communities and 20 countries. Over the Mountain high schools have a long and successful track record of giving time and effort to this worthwhile cause. Opportunites for communitywide involvement will be plenty. Relay For Life events help the American Cancer Society fund research, patient care programs, and education and prevention information. Vestavia Hills High School held a kickoff assembly Jan. 19 for its annual Relay for Life fundraiser, benefiting the American Cancer Society. During the assembly, the VHHS Relay for Life club announced its fundraising goal for this year’s event will be $250,000. While the main event is in April, the high school will host a Purple People 5K and one-mile fun run March 18 beginning at 9 a.m., which also will benefit Relay for Life. Relay for Life of Homewood will take place April 21 at Homewood Central Park, with a kick off party Jan. 26 at 6 p.m. at 18th Street Orientals. Mountain Brook High School will host its Relay for Life event at the school on April 7. Relay for Life of Hoover’s main event will take place April 29 at Hoover High School. For more information about Relay for Life visit: relay.acsevents.org. ❖






There’s so much happening in the Over the Mountain area, we can’t fit it all in the paper! Visit www.otmj.com for more stories and photos.


J O U R N A L January 26, 2017 Publisher & Editor: Maury Wald Copy Editor: Virginia Martin Features Writer: Donna Cornelius Staff Writers: Sarah Kuper, Emily Williams Editorial Assistant: Stacie Galbraith Sports: Lee Davis Contributors: Susan Murphy, Jordan Wald, June Mathews, William C. Singleton III, Emil Wald, Marvin Gentry, Lee Walls Jr., Bryan Bunch Advertising Sales: Suzanne Wald, Julie Trammell Edwards, Tommy Wald Vol. 27, No. 11

Over The Mountain Journal is a suburban bi-weekly newspaper delivered to Mountain Brook, Homewood, Vestavia Hills, Hoover and North Shelby County areas. Subscriptions for The Journal are available for $24 yearly. Mail to: Over the Mountain Journal, P.O. Box 660502, Vestavia Hills, AL 35216. Phone: (205) 823-9646. E-mail the editorial department at editorial@otmj.com. E-mail our advertising department at mwald@otmj.com. Find us on the Web at otmj.com. Copyright 2017 Over The Mountain Journal, Inc. All rights reserved. The Journal is not responsible for return of photos, copy and other unsolicited materials submitted. To have materials returned, please specify when submitting and provide a stamped, self-addressed envelope. All materials submitted are subject to editorial review and may be edited or declined without notification.




ate phone apps, they can see who is f you’re looking for a new house, ringing their doorbell while they are your kindly real estate profesworking out at the gym. They can sional will ask you to make a change the set point on their thermowish list. How many bedrooms stats while they’re at work. They can would you like? In which neighboreven see what’s in their refrigerator hood would you like to live? What is so they don’t buy eggs when they your budget? Actually, unless you don’t really need them. (Actually, plan on winning the mega-million that app would come in handy. Over lottery, you’d better start there.  the holidays, I ended up with three Your house is where you live jars of olives. I don’t even like your everyday life, so, if possible, it should include things that you absoolives.)    lutely, positively, must have. Each To see the interior of your refrigperson’s deal-breaker list is differerator or not to see the interior of your refrigerator. That is the quesent. If you are a Beverly Hills buyer, tion. Or more precisely, how much you might feel deprived if you don’t Sue Murphy have a pool. If you’re moving into grid do you really want?  the Alaskan wilderness, you might If you go high grid, you can be thrilled simply to have indoor change the TV channel from your To see the interior of IPad. Medium grid, you’ll search plumbing. Or not. Some people your refrigerator or not the couch cushions for the remote would rather not have running control. On low grid, you’ll have water or electricity at all. They to see the interior of to get up and change the channel prefer to live off the grid. your refrigerator. That using the buttons on the TV set Me? I like a little grid. I’ve become quite attached to my cenis the question. Or more (remember those?). No grid at all? tral heating and air. I like to flip a No TV.  precisely, how much grid switch and have lights come on. I With high grid, you’ll be able to close your garage door from enjoy microwaving a bag of popdo you really want?  your lounge chair in corn now and then. On the other hand, I’m not one Cancún. Medium grid means for hyper-gridding. I don’t need to you’ll use the garage door opener control my window shades from a button in your car. Low grid whole house remote control. I don’t wear one of dwellers will have to get out of the car and lift the those bracelets to tally my physical activity or detergarage door handle. No grid livers won’t even have a mine how well I slept because I’m always there with car; they’ll walk. my body when those things happen. I don’t own one Do you want a projection clock, a wind-up cuckof those know-it-all devices that provide answers to oo, or a sundial? Will your home be lit with LED’s, questions you randomly hurl through the air, but candles, or will you just go to bed when the sun goes that’s mostly because, quite frankly, they make me down? Do you want a five-burner gas stove, a flat nervous. Whatever it is, I’ll look it up later.       top electric, or will you roast a pig on a spit in your Other people like all that high-level gridding. front yard?   They want their house to be equipped with the latest You might want to check your neighborhood covand greatest, belled and whistled to the max. Not enants on that last one. Over the Mountain and off only that, they want to be able to operate all those the grid? I suppose it could happen, but I wouldn’t techno-wonders from afar. With the help of appropri- count on it. ❖ 

OVER THE MOUNTAIN VIEWS In honor of National Chocolate Cake Day on Friday, Jan. 27, we asked ...

Who makes your favorite chocolate cake?

“Zoe’s makes my favorite chocolate cake.” Abbott Jones Homewood

“My Grandmom.”

“My Aunt Carol.”

“Savage’s is the best.”

Sofia Arteaga Cahaba Heights

Ava Arteaga Cahaba Heights

Andi Arteaga Cahaba Heights



Thursday, January 26, 2017 • 3



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4 • Thursday, January 26, 2017

JAN. 27 - FEB. 9

THIRD SPACE /SHIFTING CONVERSATIONS ABOUT CONTEMPORARY ART Along with the exhibition, the museum will host a series of six programs, called the Chapters programs, in which artists from around the country will discuss their practices and ideas surrounding the exhibition.


Thurs., Jan. 26 “Go Figure” Opening Reception Grand Bohemian Gallery The gallery will host an opening reception from 5-7 p.m. for “Go Figure,” a multi-artist show including work by Amy Piette Collins, Leo Wright, Karen Libecap and several Studio By The Tracks students. For more information, visit welcometomountainbrook.com.


Winter Restaurant Week Participating Restaurants Winter Restaurant Week will include more than 30 locally-owned and operated restaurants in the Birmingham area, offering prix fixe lunch and dinner menus. For a list of participating restaurants, visit bhamrestaurantweek. com.

Fri., Jan. 27 BIRMINGHAM

The Birmingham Museum of Art is launching its first major exhibition of contemporary art drawn almost entirely from its own collection with the Jan. 28 opening of Third Space /shifting conversations about contemporary art. The two-year exhibition features more than 100 works of art in a variety of forms, including paintings, sculptures, drawings, photographs and videos, by artists such as Kerry James Marshall, Ebony Patterson, Thornton Dial and William Christenberry, as well as a commissioned work by Rural Studio, a design-build program of Auburn University. Along with the exhibition, the museum will host a series of six programs, called the Chapters programs, in which artists from around the country will discuss their practices and ideas surrounding the exhibition. “Third Spaces is a great example of the Birmingham Museum of Art’s ability to create impactful exhibits that highlight the significant role art plays in both defining and connecting unique cultures,” said Brian Bucher, PNC Bank’s regional president for Alabama. PNC is presenting Third Space. “Third Space is intended to create a dialogue that allows for the discovery of connections between the American South and the rest of the world,” said Wassan Al-Khudhairi, the museum’s Hugh Kaul Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art. “We hope visitors walk away from this exhibition with the desire to have those important conversations related to the experiences we share.” For more information visit: arstbma.org. ❖

Sat., Jan. 28 HOOVER

2017 Frostbite 5k Veterans Park The fourth annual 5k and one-mile fun run will be held at Veterans Park on Valleydalle Road and benefits BirminghamSouth YoungLife. Post-race activities will include music, snacks and fellowship. For more information, visit frostbite5k.com.


Beaker Bash McWane Science Center The center will host it’s annual fundraiser from 5-8 p.m. Guests can explore the science of transportation and the amazing innovations that help us travel around the planet. Tickets are $50 for adults and $30 for guests under the age of 21. For more information, visit mcwane.org or call 714-8414. ❖ BIRMINGHAM

Amelia Earhart Luncheon Southern Museum of Flight The Museum will host a luncheon at 11 a.m. along with the Alabama Ninety-Nines and the Zonta Club of Birmingham, featuring keynote speaker Dr. Deborah Barnhart, CEO and executive director of the U.S. Space and Rocket Center. Tickets are $30 and benefit the Amelia Earhart Birthplace Museum. For more information, contact Nancy Miller-Borg at AlaLlama@aol. com.

Jan. 28 and 29 BIRMINGHAM

CFA Cat Show Zamora Temple-Show Hall The Birmingham Feline Fanciers will present the Cat Fanciers Association Cat Show on Sat., from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Tickets are $8 adults, $5 seniors and $4 for children. For more information, visit birminghamfelinefanciers.com.

Benchin’ for Boobs LJCC The Levite Jewish Community Center will host its second annual Benchin’ for Boobs. Money raised will benefit Hadassah research for the BRCA gene mutation. There will be a weighin on Jan. 27 from 8 a.m.-2 p.m.or at 9 a.m. the morning of the event. The cost of the event is $18 for 12-18 year olds, $36 for adults and $18 for nonbenchers. For more information, contact Mindy Cohen at mcohen@bhamjcc.org, Kreston Collins at kcollins@bhamjcc. org. or visit bhamjcc.org.

Thurs., Feb. 2 BIRMINGHAM

Groundhog Day Birmingham Zoo The zoo will host a groundhog day prediction form its resident groundhog Birmingham Bill. There will be photo opportunities with Bill, kid-friendly games from 9-10 a.m., a special wildlife show at 10:30 a.m. and more. For more information, visit birmingahamzoo.com.

Sat., Feb. 4 HOMEWOOD

Murder in the Magic City Homewood Library Murder in the Magic City is a mystery conference presented by Sisters In Crime for fans of all sub-genres of mystery novels from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. The 2017 Guests of Honor will be author Andrew Grant (brother of Lee Childs), whose series is set here in Birmingham, and his wife Tasha Alexander, who writes historical mysteries. Lunch and a “goody bag” are included in the $30 registration fee. For more information, visit homewoodpubliclibrary.org. BIRMINGHAM

Birmingham Winter Beer Festival BJCC Red Mountain Entertainment will present a craft beer festival from 3-7 p.m., featuring more than 150 craft beers, demos, a mixology garden,


Chinese New Year Festival Boutwell Municipal Auditorium The Chinese Festival Association will celebrate Lunar Chinese New Year from 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. with food, stage shows and culture booths. Admission is $5 per person and $12 and under are free. For more information, visit bhmchinesefestival.org. Photo special to the Journal

Conversation Pieces

Grace Gala Woodrow Hall The WellHouse, a home for victims of human trafficking and sexual exploitation, will host a fundraiser gala benefitting the organization’s building campaign. Keynote speaker will be WellHouse founder Tijuan McCarty. The event includes a silent auction, dinner and special guest speaker from the FBI. For more information, visit eventbrite. com.

Sat., Feb. 4

Photo special to the Journal


Jan. 26-29

Photo special to the Journal



BRING ON THE HEAT Co-chairs Rebecca Hartsough, Karen Hoar and Ashley Gentry.


Bids and Bites Vestavia Hills Senior Lodge Vestavia Hills Elementary West will host a silent and live auction fundraiser offering fitness

memberships, jewelry, artwork and more from 6-9 p.m. Admission to the event is free. for more information, contact Rebecca Hartsough at rebecca harsough@gmail.com, Karen Hoar at hoarkaren@gmail.com or Ashley Gentry at ashleyehunt@gmail. com. ❖


games and more. Ticket prices vary and can be purchased online or at Birmingham Piggly Wiggly locations. For more information, visit bhambeerfest.com. BIRMINGHAM

Pointe Ball The Club The Alabama Ballet will host its 17th annual gala, benefiting the education and scholarship programs that the ballet provides. This black tie event features a gourmet dinner, live music and dancing. Tickets are $400 for individuals and $650 per couple. For more information, contact Carolyn Buck at carolynbuck@alabamaballet.org.

Thursday, January 26, 2017 • 5

ABOUT TOWN support local charitable organizations and scholarships to Hoover City Schools’ students. Reservations by Jan. 29 are $125 per person. For additional information, call 903-4987 or visit hooverserviceclub.com.

Feb. 10 and 11 MOUNTAIN BROOK

Sweet Repeats Mountain Brook Community Church The church will host its annual consignment sale, featuring children and teens clothing, sports equipment, toys and more. Shopping hours are Feb. 10 from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. and Feb. 11 from 9 a.m.-noon. Proceeds

benefit the church’s short-term mission projects. For more information, visit mccsweetrepeats.blogspot.com. HOMEWOOD

Valentines Dinner Theatre Homewood Library Large Auditorium South City Theatre will present “Over the River and Through the Woods” by Joe DiPietro. The play brings a simple charm to the stage, with an uplifting message and laughs at every turn.  There will be a buffet starting at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $30 for the buffet and show and must be purchased before Feb. 8. For more information, visit homewoodpubliclibrary.org.

Sat., Feb. 11 BIRMINGHAM

Wild About Chocolate The Harbert Center The 13th annual Valentine gala will be held from 7-10 p.m. and benefit the Alabama Wildlife Center. The event will feature appetizers, chocolate desserts, and complimentary wine and beer provided by many of Birmingham’s finest restaurants, bakeries, caterers, and beverage distributors. Also featured will be a silent and live auction and the introduction of AWC’s two newest education ambassadors, an adorable Eastern Screech Owl and a rare Eurasian Eagle Owl. Admission is

$75 in advance and $100 at the door. For more information, visit awrc.org. BIRMINGHAM

Heart2HeART Bridgestreet Gallery aTeam Ministries will host its annual fundraiser supporting children with pediatric cancer. Patients will be paired up with local artists and will create pieces. The works of art will be auctioned live along with various vacation packages and items. The event begins at 6 p.m. For more information, visit the “2017 Heart2HeART Event” Facebook page. ❖


Jazz Cat Ball Sheraton Birmingham Hotel The Greater Birmingham Humane Society will host its sixth annual Mardi Gras-themed gala from 6-11:30 p.m. The evening will feature casino games, a seated dinner, live and silent auctions, as well as dancing to the internationally acclaimed band the Party Crashers. Tables for 10 can be purchased for $2,500 and proceeds benefit the animals at the GBHS. For more information, contact rgraffeo@ gbhs.org or visit the “Jazz Cat Ball 2017” Facebook page.


Family Night Emmet O’Neal Library The Alabama Symphony Orchestra will have a quartet performance beginning with a dinner at 5:30 p.m.  Attendees  will get to meet the instruments. This event is for all ages.  For more information, visit eolib.org.   

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Lets Dish Cookbook Club Homewood Library Guests are invited to bring a sweet treat to this monthly recipe club discussion group at 6:30 p.m. No registration is required. For more information, please contact Judith Wright at jrwright@bham.lib.al.us or call 332-6622. HOOVER

“Perfect Match: A Valentine Story” Hoover Country Club The Hoover Service Club will host a meeting featuring Dolores Hydock in “Perfect Match: A Valentine Story”. The doors will open at 10:30 a.m. and the program will begin at 11 a.m. An $18 lunch is optional. For reservations, call Winnie Cooper at 979-5699.


Hearts and Harmony Gala Park Crest Event Facility Hoover Service Club presents their fifth annual gala at 6:30 p.m. featuring cocktails, appetizers and a silent auction followed by dinner and a live auction. John Lyda and Jamie Nutter will serve as emcees and auctioneers. Dinner will be provided by Dianne and Councilman Mike Shaw. Proceeds will

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6 • Thursday, January 26, 2017


Magic Kingdom Meets Magic City New BBG Director Brings Disney Experience to the Gardens

‘At Disney things are very guest focused. We focused on creativity and quality and storytelling. We wanted to create special, memorable experiences for everyone.’

Photo special to the Journal

found an opportunity to work for Walt Disney World in Orlando. “I got a summer job planting trees for the Epcot park, which was new at the time,” he said. Underwood said Disney had a strong hire-from-within program, and he took full advantage. “I started out just planting and then one thing led to another and it

A nationwide search led by former Southern Living editor-in-chief John Floyd resulted in talks with Tom Underwood, above, about the position at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens.

became a career lasting 20 years,” he said. Underwood rose to become the manager of the horticulture services department. Along the way, he focused on special projects such as garden festivals and displays. He executed projects off-site, including topiary displays in New York’s Rockefeller Plaza to showcase the Broadway opening of Beauty and the Beast. In 2002, Underwood moved to Virginia to serve as executive director of the American Horticultural Society. This national organization is a network of more than 20,000 gardeners sharing knowledge and a passion for horticulture. Underwood oversaw communications, development, management, membership, events and administra-

Beverley French Hoyt will be chairwoman of the board, serving her first term in the post.

New Board Members and Officers Installed for the Gardens

The Friends of Birmingham Botanical Gardens recently named its board of directors for 2017. Beverley French Hoyt will be chairwoman of the board, serving her first term in the post, while Brian Barr is past chairman and will serve as chairman of operations, according to a statement from the gardens. Serving second terms on the executive committee are: Wally Evans as chairman of finance, John Miller as chairman of development, Charles Goodrich as chairman of governance and John Smith T. as

tion. One initiative particularly close to his heart was outreach to a younger generation through an annual youth gardening symposium. Recently, a nationwide search led by former Southern Living editor-inchief John Floyd resulted in talks with Underwood about the position at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens. He jumped at the opportunity. “I had dealt with many publications writing about the gardening at Disney, so I knew about Southern Living being in Birmingham,” he said. “I also knew about the gardens’ reputation, and Railroad Park in Birmingham (had) just won an award from the American Horticultural Society. Birmingham was familiar.” Underwood said that, although he has enjoyed working for a national organization, he is excited to get more

chairman of education. Carl Jones will begin his first term as secretary and Natalie Kelly becomes chairwoman of government relations. New as board members this year are: Stephanie Cooper, Kate Cotton, Bob de Buys and Fred Hawkins. Completing their service are: Dr. John Hurst, John Hudson, Katie Baker Lasker and B. Hanson Slaughter, who served as chairman in 2014. At-large members of the board are: Cathy Adams, Craig Beatty, Chris Boles, Emily Bowron, Norman Davis, Houston Gillespy, Chris Hastings, William R. Ireland III, Elizabeth Jernigan, Peyton King, Lee McLemore and Randall Woodfin. Ian Dexter serves the board as junior board chairman.

BBG Recognizes Volunteers at Annual Luncheon

The Birmingham Botanical Gardens hosted its annual Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon on Dec. 15 to recognize the contributions and time donated by the people who voluntarily assist the gardens in its day-to-day operations. The Ida C. Burns Volunteer of the Year award was

personal with patrons of the gardens in Birmingham. “I look forward to being part of the community and seeing members face-to-face,” he said. “I’m excited to walk out into the gardens and see people experience it.” He said he believes this position will use his experience and talents well. “This can be great to bring all the things I’ve done and learned and experiences and bring them somewhere new where I can make a contribution,” Underwood said. In particular, he said, he will bring the emphasis on storytelling he learned working at Walt Disney World. “At Disney things are very guest focused. We focused on creativity and quality and storytelling. We wanted to create special, memorable experiences for everyone,” he said. But he said he also is keen to incorporate education. “I really enjoy the informal educational side of gardening, like researching and getting to know a garden and what stories it has to tell,” he said. Underwood said he will use graphics and computer programs to design landscapes – all things he learned at Disney. Underwood and his wife, Jane, also a horticulturalist, are in the process of moving to the city. “Everyone we have met has been so welcoming and friendly,” he said. “We look forward to showing the rest of the country what is in Birmingham.” While Underwood hasn’t revealed any specific programs or changes coming to the gardens, he said he is planning to build on the gardens’ mission to promote public knowledge and appreciation of plants. ❖

presented to Hope Cooper for her continued service to the gardens. Bart McCorquodale was presented with the A. Brand Walton Jr. Unsung Hero of the Year award for his independent contributions. Girl Scouts Troop 31017 received the distinction of being named Partner of the Year. For sharing her plant knowledge and skills with other volunteers, Gail Snyder was given the Plantsperson of the Year award. Both Gail Pless and Ruth Varnell received the Educator of the Year distinction, recognizing their efforts to promote public knowledge and appreciation of plants, gardens and the environment. ❖

Photo special to the Journal

Friends of the Birmingham Botanical Gardens have named Tom Underwood its new executive director. Beginning in February, Underwood will bring his varied and impressive experience Over the Mountain, succeeding former Executive Director Fred Spicer. It was a love of the outdoors and a summer job that led Underwood to prominence in the horticultural world. And it all started with the Happiest Place on Earth. “I studied horticulture and I set my sights on working for Disney,” Underwood said. “I had grown up near Disneyland in southern California and it seemed like a great place to work.” After graduating from California Polytechnic State University with a degree in horticulture, Underwood

Photo special to the Journal

By Sarah Kuper

Hands On to Host First Community Volunteer Awards Ceremony

United Way affiliate Hands On Birmingham will host the Ignite Awards Ceremony on April 25 and will be accepting nominations for eight awards to recognize members of the community who go above and beyond. Hands On works to provide the community with volunteer opportunities and volunteer days that benefit local service organizations. “Every year at HOB, we have thousands of volunteers who set an example of what can be done in and for our communities. These unsung volunteers – individual, company, government, nonprofit, small business, student and faith-based volunteers – need to be honored for inspiring others to contribute and help bring about positive social change throughout Central Alabama,” said Benga Harrison, executive director of Hands On Birmingham. The Ignite ceremony will include a presentation of awards for eight categories: Hands on Birmingham Volunteer of the Year, Corporate/ Company Volunteer of the Year, Government Volunteer of the Year, Nonprofit Volunteer of the Year, Student Volunteer of the Year, Small Business Volunteer of the Year and Faith-Based Volunteer of the Year. “According to the Department of Labor, each volunteer hour in Alabama equates to approximately $20.84, but there is currently not a public platform to recognize the commitment of volunteers. With Ignite, we hope to highlight these efforts and inspire others to volunteer in their community,” said Harrison. Nominations are open to residents of Jefferson, St. Clair, Walker, Shelby and Blount counties, and self-nominations will be accepted. Nominations must be made by Jan. 31. To nominate a volunteer, visit uwca. org/ignite.

JLB Aids Local NonProfits During MLK Day of Service

On Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Jan. 16, the Junior League of Birmingham organized a group of volunteers for a National Day of Service, inviting members and their children to aid three local nonprofit organizations. “We work to promote volunteerism in our community,” JLB President Lauren Roberts said in a released statement. “These volunteer opportunities on MLK Day will leave our JLB members and their families with insight into several nonprofits here in our community and their specific needs.” One group aided The Grace Place, a Bessemer Baptist Association ministry that provides food, clothing and hygiene items to people in need, as well as support services such as counseling and educational classes. Volunteers from the league helped stock shelves and made crafts and cards for some of the ministry’s clients. At the Greater Birmingham Humane



Thursday, January 26, 2017 • 7

Moving Forward on Final Phase

Evson Inc. began work recently on the demolition of the old Western Market location in Mountain Brook Village Shopping Center marking the start of the final phase of their Lane Parke development project. Plans are to replace the entire shopping center, built in 1947, with a construction similar to the Lane Parke development which opened last October.

Journal photo by Maury Wald

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discontinued linen patterns

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Society, a group from the league helped with socializing dogs and cats. They spent time walking dogs around the grounds and giving them baths, and they performed some landscaping work. A group volunteering at Brookdale Place, a senior living facility, spent time some social time with the residents. Members of the league served lunch and joined in on games such as Bingo.

Mountain Brook Surveys Residents on City Amenities and Services

The city of Mountain Brook is distributing surveys concerning

municipal services and overall quality of life to 2,000 randomly selected households. The survey will be distributed in late January, and the deadline for completing it is Feb. 16, according to a statement from the city. The sevenpage survey asks about city services, public safety and city communications. It can be completed online using a secure access. The city has contracted with the ETC Institute, of Olathe, Kansas, to conduct the survey. ETC is a marketing, research, demography and statistical firm that has conducted residents’ surveys for Auburn, Dothan and Vestavia Hills.

In 2014, a similar survey had a return rate of about 40 percent, which was higher than the national average of 10 percent to 20 percent. It’s important for residents to complete the surveys so the city has enough feedback to understand the concerns and desires of residents and make strides to address them. In the previous survey, the main dissatisfaction was street lights and traffic congestion. Since that survey, the city has made traffic improvements at eight intersections and added many new street lights, as well as upgraded the street lights in the four commercial villages and on Mountain Brook Parkway to LED lights. ❖

basic Yves Delorme, includes stock and orders, JANUARY 14TH - 28TH


8 • Thursday, January 26, 2017

Morning Glory



By Lee Davis

Ben Hope, who grew up in Cahaba Heights, has performed on Broadway in the award-winning musical “Once.”

CASHIN’ IN Birmingham Native Ben Hope Brings Johnny Cash Tribute Home

By Emily Williams

Photo special to the Journal

Tom York didn’t start out with a vision for a local morning television show. It just happened. York, a Florence native, was working at a TV station in Memphis when he was hired away by WBRC in Birmingham in 1957. The station, a CBS affiliate at the time, was transitioning ownership to Taft Broadcasting, and major changes were in the works. One of them included the possibility of airing a local morning show. “I was the last one hired,” York said. “So that meant I got the morning shift. The station management told me there was an open hour between 7 and 8 a.m. and asked me what I could do with it.” The answer would make York a television icon. For the next 32 years, York’s program – titled simply “The Morning Show” – would dominate the ratings in Alabama’s biggest market. The formula was relatively simple: Give viewers the latest news and the weather, and add entertaining talk in between. But York didn’t want to be a single talking head. “We hired a young lady so I’d have somebody to talk to on the show,” York recalled. “Jeannine Johnson, who worked in our production office, became our first co-host.” Some of “The Morning Show’s” early features would seem quaint today. An early staple of programming was showing film of people walking the streets of downtown Birmingham. “That was one of the most popular things we did,” York remembered. The show underwent a change the following year, when Pat Gray became York’s television partner. Gray’s addition to the Morning Show accelerated its climb in the ratings, and it also created some confusion. By coincidence, Gray’s husband was also named Tom York – so many viewers got the idea that the pair they saw on the air every morning was married to one another. “Some people still think Pat and I were married,” York said, laughing. In many ways, “The Morning Show” set the pace for what the community was talking about. During the fitness craze of the early 1960s, hundreds of viewers began their mornings by exercising with York and Gray to the sounds of the new “Chicken Fat” workout song that was commissioned by President John F. Kennedy and recorded by Broadway performer Robert Preston. “Pat Gray looked a lot better in leotards than I did,” York said, smiling. “The Morning Show” also was a destination stop for network stars promoting their own pro-

grams. When WBRC was a CBS affiliate, “Gunsmoke” stars Amanda Blake and Milburn Stone were guests on the set. In the years that followed, virtually any celebrity visiting Birmingham found themselves on “The Morning Show.” Some notables York interviewed included Apollo astronaut Jim Lovell and sports stars such as coaches Bear Bryant and Shug Jordan and baseball legend Willie Mays. In 1963, Gray moved to other assignments at WBRC, and Fannie Flagg – later a star of stage and screen and a best-selling author – became York’s Girl Friday. Through all the changes, “The Morning Show’s” ratings remained strong and consistent, even after the station changed

Journal photo by Emily Williams

Tom York Dominated Local Television

A favorite assignment of York’s was hosting the Dialing For Dollars Early Show.

affiliation from CBS to ABC. The program was also expanded to two hours. “The local slant of our show was part of what made it work,” York said. “We tried to cover as many local people and events as we could. I was also producer of the show, which gave me a lot of input as to content. We were pioneers in local television, and management allowed us to be creative.” Sometimes being local meant tossing good natured barbs at the city’s political leaders. When the ambitious Red Mountain Expressway project ran into numerous delays in the mid1960s, York and his staff composed lyrics – written to the tune of the hit song Winchester Cathedral – lampooning officials for the slow progress. “I still get requests for the words of that song,” York said. Hosting and producing a five-day-a-week morning show consumed much of York’s time, but it wasn’t his total body of work at WBRC. He also delivered a daily sportscast. A favorite assignment of York’s was hosting the “Dialing for Dollars Early Show,” during which viewers chosen randomly from the Birmingham telephone directory could win cash by correctly identifying the “count and the amount.” “People told me they would be nervous, sitting by their phone, hoping it would ring,” York said. “Not that many people won money, but everybody had a good time.” York was also busy away from television. He was instrumental in the founding of the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame and served as master of ceremonies at the induction ceremonies in the hall’s early years. He also worked to initiate the See TOM YORK, page 10

Before moving to New York and performing on Broadway, Ben Hope nurtured his love of musical theater in his native Birmingham. Now, he’s bringing Broadway back home as he directs and performs in “Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash.” The production will be at the Virginia Samford Theatre Jan. 26 to Feb. 12. Hope is starring in the show, performing the role of Johnny Cash, as well as co-directing with his wife, Katie Barton. Both felt that the show’s family-friendly depiction of the country music legend’s life would appeal to a Birmingham audience. “My wife and I are both huge fans of Johnny Cash, and he’s always had that strong connection to his roots – his hometown – and the South,” Hope said. “My wife has a connection to Birmingham as well. She went to Birmingham-Southern. So, it’s like we are going back to our roots to work on ‘Ring of Fire.’” Hope, who grew up in Cahaba Heights, said he has been pleased to see the growth and progress Birmingham has experienced. He recalls spending the summer of 1998 in the Summerfest musical theater program, a program that has grown into The Red Mountain Theatre Company. Hope has always had a love of music. His father is a musician and when his brother started to play guitar, Hope began teaching himself. After a “life-changing” experience in Summerfest gave him a new appreciation for musical theater, Hope learned the ins and outs of the theater during his time attending Shades Valley High School, studying under Roy Hudson. “I was on the basketball team in high school,” he said. “I remember noticing how there was this lack of equality among the players. In theater, everyone is so inclusive and there is a real team mentality.” Hope said that Hudson, now artistic director of the Birmingham Children’s Theatre, was one of his biggest influences. He prides Hudson on his ability to show his students that a successful career in theater is achievable. After his collegiate studies, Hope moved to

New York on a whim. His contract job in Orlando was about to end and one of his friends had a spare room open in his NYC apartment, so Hope took a leap of faith and moved. Before landing his big break performing on Broadway in the award-winning musical “Once,” Hope did a little bit of everything. “I did a lot of bartending,” he said. “I also spent some time working in real estate in Brooklyn.” His favorite gig was playing guitar in the subway. “I love playing in the subway. I still do. When we had a break during ‘Once,’ I would grab my guitar and go down there,” he said. Playing music in the subway earned him about $30 on a decent day, but what really paid off was the reactions of passersby. “I play a lot of classic country, like Hank Williams and some Johnny Cash,” he said. The classics seem to create a sense of nostalgia for passersby, some even stopping to tell Hope that he’d played their father’s favorite song or one they hadn’t heard in years. Everything about his journey to landing a role in “Once” was kismet, according to Hope. “I felt like everything I had ever done was leading up to that point,” he said. He auditioned for the role before it went to Broadway, watching it develop before his eyes as he went through more than six weeks of auditions. When he got the call telling him he had the role, he dropped his phone and broke it. Luckily, he had gone for post-call back drinks, and a fellow auditioner who also had been given a job relayed to Hope that he had made it. “When I knew I had the job, the first people I called were my mom and dad,” he said. “The second person was Roy Hudson.” Nowadays, when Hope isn’t working a theatrical job, he’s playing with his country music band, Ben Hope and the Uptown Outfit. Two of his bandmates, Eric Anthony and Kurt Jenkins, will take the stage with him for “Ring of Fire.” “We like to call ourselves an old school honky-tonk band,” he said. “We play good country music.” Hope identifies good country music as any-

See BEN HOPE, page 10


Sponsored by the Riverchase Women’s Club, the 11th annual Riverchase Loves Artists will feature about 50 notable artists exhibiting and selling work in a variety of mediums, including oil and watercolor paintings, jewelry, metal, wood, pottery and fiber art.


‘I don’t like being limited physically the way I am now, but I’ve never been happier. I guess you never know what life is going to bring you.’ are completely different.” Inspired by a combination of visual, political and humorous concepts, Ware prefers to paint on hard surfaces as opposed to canvas, using birch panels or pieces of copper, tin or

Journal photo by Jordan Wald

From page one

limited use of his left hand and arm. But despite the physical limitations, he says life now is better than ever. “I know it’s a crazy thing to say, but it’s true,” he said. Ware retired at the end of 2015. So now instead of spending long hours in a downtown office, which he did for 30 years, he spends his days painting at the Rosedale studio he shares with leather artist Becky Stayner. It was Stayner, in fact, who suggested that Ware become an exhibitor in the upcoming Riverchase Loves Artists show, Feb. 4 at the Riverchase Country Club. “Becky was asked to participate, and she mentioned me,” he said. “She makes beautiful handmade leather purses and handbags, and we motivate one another and consult on design questions, even though our mediums

Thursday, January 26, 2017 • 9


other sheet metals as the foundations for his work. “The birch panels I purchase from local art stores; the copper and tin I scrounge for,” he said. “Folks know that I like to paint on these materials, so they save them for me, and my son helps me cut the metal to size.” Ware’s paintings often feature the contrast and sharp edges of architectural elements against the softness and warmth of nature – like a garish billboard against a bucolic landscape or the geometry of high tension power lines and towers against a beautiful sky. “I also like night scenes lit by artificial light,” he said. Though Ware has been pursuing art in one way or another since his junior high days, it wasn’t until the 1990s, during a particularly busy time at the office, that he set up a studio

and began producing a body of work. “I really needed an activity that was completely different and apart from practicing law,” he said. “I’ve always made things … and in Birmingham I had a number of artist friends, so there was a natural step and progression to picking up a paint brush.” Though what Ware refers to as his “new normal” has required adjustments – he’s had to learn how to paint with one hand, and his paintings are smaller now – it has in no way deterred his desire to continue pursuing his art. “I don’t like being limited physically the way I am now, but I’ve never been happier,” he said. “I guess you never know what life is going to bring you.” Sponsored by the Riverchase Women’s Club, the 11th annual Riverchase Loves Artists will feature about 50 notable artists exhibiting and selling work in a variety of mediums, including oil and watercolor paintings, jewelry, metal, wood, pottery and fiber art. The show is open to the public for a $2 donation. Proceeds from the sale will benefit several charitable organizations. A shuttle will be available to take people from the parking area to the clubhouse. For more information, visit riverchaselovesartists.com. ❖



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10 • Thursday, January 26, 2017



cancer and since then has used his experience to encourage others to have regular exams. Both of the Hales were treated by radiation oncologists in Birmingham and feel that the radiation research being conducted at UAB Hospital contributed to the success of their treatment. According to Roar officials, the Hales’ devotion to educating the public

about cancer is just one of the many reasons they will honor the couple when they donate proceeds from the annual gala to UAB’s radiation oncology department. This year’s event, being called “Research Royale,” will be held at The Club. The event will include a live auction by Granger, Thagard and Associates featuring big ticket items such as round-trip airfare to New York City with a dinner prepared by Food Network star Sandra Lee; an African Safari vacation; and a weekend at the Masters Tournament and Taste of Tuscany. ❖



Photo special to the Journal

The Roar James Bond Gala on Jan. 28 will honor Sheriff Mike Hale and his wife, Dianne, both of whom are cancer survivors.

Elaine Colby, M.D.

Dr. Colby, Southview Medical Group These days, finding a primary care doctor who takes time to listen can be a difficult task. For Dr. Elaine Colby at Southview Medical Group, P.C., establishing a welcoming and compassionate clinical environment is paramount. “It’s important my patients know they are being cared for, and not feel like a number getting lost in the system,” Dr. Colby explains. In addition, primary care physicians serve an important role assisting individuals in navigating the increasingly complex health care system. “Not only do I advocate for my patients, I also try to practice cost-conscious care and involve my patients in medical decision making,” Dr. Colby says. Dr. Colby, a Birmingham native, graduated from Auburn University and the University of Alabama School of Medicine. She completed her residency in Family Medicine at the University of Hawaii in 2009, serving as Chief Resident in her senior year. Dr. Colby later worked in the Department of Family Medicine at San Antonio Military Medical Center in Texas from 2011 to 2015, for which she received the Achievement Medal for Civilian Service. Upon returning to Birmingham, she worked at the Birmingham VA Medical Center, until joining Southview Medical Group in November 2016. “I’m honored and blessed to join Southview, which has a long tradition of excellence in the Birmingham medical community,” Dr. Colby says. Southview Medical Group, P.C., a multi-specialty group located on St. Vincent’s Birmingham campus, offers services in internal medicine, family medicine, cardiology, gastroenterology, dermatology, endocrinology, and infectious disease.

Now Accepting New Patients

Research Royale

From page 8

Birmingham Touchdown Club. While different co-hosts would come and go, York remained the This Year’s Roar Gala Honors lynchpin of “The Morning Show” for Sheriff Mike Hale and His Wife more than three decades. Finally in 1989, York retired after 32 years at the ness, Mike Hale has spent more than 40 The sixth annual James Bond Gala, helm. years in local law enforcement. In 1998, being hosted Jan. 28 by the Radiation “As television became more corpoOncology Accelerated Research organi- Mike Hale was elected Jefferson rate, it was less fun,” said York, now County sheriff, a position he still holds. zation, will honor Sheriff Mike Hale 92 and living in Hoover. “Back when The Hales also both have been vocal and his wife, Dianna. we started it was more fun. Now it’s The Hales met in 1968 at Woodlawn about their experiences with cancer, much more of a business.” To: beginning Colby,a Elaine according to a press release from Roar. High School, relationship For all of his accomplishments, From: Mountain PHONE: Dianna Hale was205-823-9646 diagnosed seven that would evolveOver into aThe 46-year mar- Journal, York doesn’t hesitate to name his years ago with triple negative breast riage with three sons and205-824-1246 eight grandFAX: favorite: Marrying his wife, Helen, on cancer and chose to be open about her children.Date: December Christmas Eve 1947. battle with the disease. In early 2016, While Dianna Hale has spent 22 “We met in a college classroom and Mike Hale was diagnosed with prostate years in the property This management busiis your AD PrOOF from the OvEr THE MOuNTAiN JOurNAl for the have been together ever since,” York Dec. 15th issue. Please email approvalOor changes to 824-1246. said. “The key to being married for 69 DA nly ts years is by saying, ‘Yes, ma’am.’” r a YS also takes special pride in his Please make sure all information is York correct, St daughter Karen, who taught at including address and phone number! Mountain Brook High School for 25 years, and son Byron, a respected political commentator. “I’m one of the luckiest people in the world,” York said. And for 32 years, Birmingham television viewers were lucky to have Tom York. ❖


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thing made before the early 90s, with possibly one or two exceptions. Audiences should expect a celebration of Cash’s music as Hope seeks to be a vessel for Cash’s story rather than trying to perform a Johnny Cash impersonation. “There is really only one Johnny Cash,” he said. “We’ll be celebrating his music and telling … stories that were written in his autobiographical words. … We’re not trying to bring a ghost back to life.” The show is rated G, so Hope said it is perfect for fans both young and old. Young kids are some of his favorite audience members. “Something I love about playing the guitar, when a kid sees someone playing up on stage, you see their faces light up,” he said. “It’s equally as rewarding to see older audiences hear those songs that used to play on the radio when they were growing up.” Any way you spin it, with the help of his wife, whom Hope says has carried him through the directing process, Hope is ready to bring a show back home to the community that fostered his love of music. ❖

1/16/17 4:17 PM


Thursday, January 26, 2017 • 11

PEOPLE Hoover Resident Publishes First Novel

Photos special to the Journal

Barbara Huffman spends half of her time at her home in Greystone and the other half at her vacation home on the Gulf Coast, all the while writing and publishing her first novel under the pen name McAuley Huffman. According to her publisher, Huffman drew from her experience as a native of Alabama to write “Pemrose Key,” a romantic thriller. The story follows a young veteran

returning from the Vietnam War to his coastal Florida hometown, Pemrose Key, to join his father’s company and eventually inherit it. Plans begin to shift when he meets Barbara Huffman a captivating flight attendant who draws him into a

web of criminal activity. After college, Huffman worked as a flight attendant, satisfying her desire for travel, according to her bio in the book. She began creating characters after the people she met in her travels sparked her imagination. Huffman plans to debut her second novel, “Forever, My Love,” in the near future. Huffman’s novel is available through Amazon, Books-A-Million, Barnes and Noble and various independent bookstores. ❖

From left: Alec Albright, Stephen Mims, Connor Ridgway and Thomas Sturdivant.

Vestavia Hills’ Troop 4 Honors Eagle Scouts

Boy Scout Troop 4, chartered through Vestavia Hills UMC, held a Court of Honor ceremony Jan. 22 to recognize Alec Albright, Stephen Mims, Connor Ridgway and Thomas Sturdivant as Eagle Scouts. For his Eagle Project, Albright responded to a request to replace three worn down picnic tables at Scout Square in Vestavia Hills with new ones. A senior at Vestavia Hills High School, he plans to attend Mississippi State University or the University of Alabama at Birmingham to major in marketing. He is the son of Jeff and Donna Albright of Vestavia Hills. For Mim’s Eagle Project, he coordinated the building of an outdoor stage and benches at Cornerstone Christian School. The structure will serve as a performing arts center and outdoor classroom.   A VHHS senior, Mims plans to attend the University of Alabama after graduation, where he will study management information systems. He is the son of David and Holly Mims of Vestavia Hills. For his Eagle Project, Ridgway built elevated flower beds for the residents at Regency Retirement Village in Homewood to enjoy. A junior at VHHS, Ridgway plans to attend the University of Alabama when he graduates next year. He is the son of Chris and Amy Ridgway of Vestavia Hills. Sturdivant’s Eagle Project was performed for Vestavia Hills UMC, where he constructed and installed a heavy-duty storage unit and bench in the church’s fitness room.   A VHHS senior, Sturdivant will attend Auburn University or Birmingham-Southern College in the fall, where he plans to major in media studies. He is the son of Jim and Susan Sturdivant of Vestavia Hills.

Mountain Brook’s Randolph Awarded Eagle Honor

Robert Carter Randolph, a member of Boy Scout Troop 53, was presented with his Eagle Scout Award at a Court of Honor ceremony on Dec. 18 at St Peter’s Church. During his scouting career, Randolph has earned 23 merit badges and the Order of the Arrow award and has participated in several camp outs, ski trips and a sailing trip to the Bahamas. He has served in several leadership roles, including senior patrol leader, patrol leader and assistant patrol leader. Robert Carter For his Randolph Eagle project, Randolph built a retaining wall and planter for St. Peter’s Anglican Church. Randolph, the son of Patti Ann and Rich Randolph, joined the scouts when he was in fifth grade, and he now is a senior at Mountain Brook High School.

Krauss of Mountain Brook Earns Eagle Rank

Robert Dorsey Krauss achieved the rank of Eagle Scout in October and was honored on Dec. 18 at a Court of Honor

ceremony held at St. Peter’s Anglican Church. He is a member of Troop 53 under scoutmaster George Elliott. During his time as a scout, he has earned 22 merit badges and an Arrow of Light Award, and he has served in leadership positions that include assistant patrol leader, patrol leader and assistant senior patrol leader. He has worked on a sailing vessel at the Ciganka High Adventure Camp in The Bahamas and completed an 81-mile trek in the Philmont High Adventure Scout Ranch in New Mexico. For his Eagle project, Robert built a can-crushing recycling station and refurbished a storage trailer for St. Francis Xavier School. A senior Robert Dorsey at Mountain Krauss Brook High School, Krauss is a member of the National Honor Society, a member of Mu Alpha Theta Math Honor Society, captain of the marching band, first chair baritone in the symphonic band and a member of the swim team. He attends St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church. Krauss is the son of Drs. William and Erin Krauss of Mountain Brook and the grandson of Mary Ann Krauss and the late Dr. William Krauss of Columbus, Ohio, and Thomas and Mary Lorsung of Columbia, Maryland.

“Jermaine Spann was there for me every step of the way.” When Viyesha Williams listed her home for sale with Jermaine Spann of ARC Realty, she knew he was trustworthy and dependable. “I just didn’t realize how quickly he would sell my home,” Viyesha says. The right buyer visited Jermaine’s first open house. “For my new home, Jermaine guided me to a great neighborhood where I was able to build a home to meet my needs. From our first meetings with the building team to my final walk-through, Jermaine was there for me, paying attention to every detail and always a calm presence. That’s important because building a home can be an emotional experience.” Jermaine says helping customers like Viyesha is a privilege. “I have the support of my entire ARC Realty family to make the process easy for my clients.” For more information on working with Jermaine and to see all of ARC Realty’s listings, visit www.arcrealtyco.com.

A Relationship Company 4274 Cahaba Heights Court, Suite 200 Birmingham, AL 35243 • 205.969.8910 www.arcrealtyco.com Jermaine Spann • (205) 243-0754 jspann@arcrealtyco.com

12 • Thursday, January 26, 2017



Bouquets and Ballets 16 Young Women Presented In Poinsettia Debutante Ball

Journal photos by Jordan Wald


he Ballet Women’s Committee hosted the 49th annual Poinsettia Debutante Ball on Dec. 29 at Vestavia Country Club. Co-hosting the event was the Poinsettia Men’s Committee. The 16 Poinsettia Debutantes, who were dressed in white and carried bouquets of red poinsettias, were presented by their fathers. A selection of junior debs also was presented, wearing red dresses and carrying white poinsettias. The ballroom was decorated with large Christmas trees and a sea of red poinsettias, celebrating the holiday season. Following the presentation, the debutantes and their guests were invited to dance the night away to live musical entertainment. The evening’s festivities were coordinated by Poinsettia Ball board President Stephanie Whisenhunt and ball co-chairwomen Joanna Duckett and Liz Phillips Guest; with support from Nancy Kennedy, reserved seating, and ball board members Marian McCord, Mary Jo Angelo, Joanna Burleson, Frances Knox, Melissa Lassiter, Frances McAleer, Patti Pierce and Tammy Towns. Aiding in the festivities was Sherry Bohorfoush, president of the Ballet Women’s Committee; Lianne Hand, program chair; and Amy Miller, social secretary. The annual event benefits the Alabama Ballet. ❖

Front, from left: Maria Shelby Christine, Hannah Annette Kendrick, Virginia Lee Cade, Paris Mariah Sanson Malensek and Rachael Elizabeth Snow. Middle: Sara Douglas Lowrey, Olivia Baggett Whatley, Jane Davis Whitaker, Kara Nicole McCord, Katherine Morgan McDaniel and Caitlin Brooke Curtis. Back: Lauren Emery Fitch, Katherine Ann Mundy, Caroline Elizabeth Powell, Sara Alan Friday and Florence Candler Yeilding.

Sherry Bohorfoush, Marian McCord, Nancy Kennedy, Joanna Duckett, Liz Phillips, Amy Miller, Stephanie Whisenhunt and Lianne Hand.

Front: Erin Blake McCraw, Jordan Lee Henderson, Olivia Bartlett Brown and Ashton Chatham Henderson. Back: Jessica Michelle Stevens, Dylan Margaret Surber, Kendall Noelle Calamusa, Alexandra Nicole Casanova, Rachel Hannah Ronson, Kathryn Andrea Sours and Peggy Clare Friday.

Mike McCraw, Erin McCraw, DeDie McCraw and Slade McCraw.

Caitlin Brooke Curtis, Maria Shelby Christine, Sara Douglas Lowrey and Virginia Lee Cade.


Thursday, January 26, 2017 • 13

Photo by Dee Moore


The 74th Annual Holiday Assembly was held Dec. 16 at The Country Club of Birmingham.

Assembly Required

Annual Holiday Presentation Introduces 35 Young Women The 74th Annual Holiday Assembly was held Dec. 16 at The Country Club of Birmingham. Thirty-five presentees and their dates enjoyed a seated dinner in the East Room before being escorted by their fathers in the presentation. A dance with music by Familiar Faces followed for the honorees and their friends. The members of the 2016 Holiday Assembly are: Miss Adele Tydings Bloodworth, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Courtenay Renneker Bloodworth; Miss Mary Lauren Burdeshaw, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Acree Burdeshaw Jr.; Miss Victoria Jean Carmichael, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. James Donald Carmichael Jr.; Miss Lucille Grace Christian, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Edward Rosamond Christian; Miss Sophia Drew Clark, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Lawrence Brown Clark Jr.; Miss Anne Clayton Cole, daughter of the Honorable John William Cole and Mrs. Cole. Miss Isabel Brownlee Coleman, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Bibb Coleman; Miss Sally Reed Creveling, daughter of Mr. Clay Wilburn Creveling and Mrs. Suzanna Reed Townsend; Miss Madeline Ennis Everette, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Smith Everette III; Miss Mary Tynes Flake, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Jared Gray Flake; Miss Lillian Ashley Fowler, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. David Samuel Fowler; Miss Caroline Henderson Goings daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Alfred Eugene Goings. Miss Mary Inzer Hagan, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Willis Cobb Hagan III; Miss Elizabeth Alline Vogtle Hale, daughter of Dr. James Alan Hale and Ms. Elizabeth Vogtle Hale; Miss Sarah Randall Hydinger, daughter of Mr. and Mrs.

Elbridge Thornton Hydinger Jr.; Miss Elizabeth Lacey Jeffcoat, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Robert Jeffcoat; Miss Mary Steele Johnson, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Steele Johnson Jr.; Miss Caroline Judith Knight, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. James Bailey Knight III. Miss Ann Armstrong Lashley, daughter of Mr. andd Mrs. John Christopher Lashley; Miss Kathryn Chapple Lummis, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Gregory Kessler Lummis; Miss Eleanor Claire Martin, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Higgins Martin Jr.; Miss Caroline Scott Monaghan, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. James Jackson Monaghan Jr.; Miss Farley Southland Morris, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Norwood Morris II; Miss Margot Grace Naff, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. William Blevins Naff; Miss Caroline Lee Pope, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Lee McWhorter Pope. Miss Anne Heaton Dearborn Sanders, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Joe Columbus Sanders Jr.; Miss Katherine Lee Seibels, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Howard Kelly Seibels Jr.; Miss Sallie Evans Simpson, daughter of Mr. John Rembert Simpson and Mrs. Jonathan Hugh Register; Miss Lucy Jordan Smith, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Henley Jordan Smith III; Miss Mary McLaurine Trammell, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Bernard Monroe Trammell III; Miss Helen Claire Tynes, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Wilson Tynes; Miss Rebecca Fairbanks Hart White, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. David Hart White Jr. and Mr. and Mrs. John Trygve Hoff. Miss Miriam Worthington Willis, daughter of Mr. John Perry Willis IV and Ms. Miriam Simmons Willis and escorted by her godfather, Mr. Harold Fougner Lassen; Miss

Kathleen Connolly Wilson, daughter of Dr. and Mrs. Thomas Alexander Symington Wilson Jr.; Miss Virginia Cobb Witherington, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Edward Witherington Jr.; and Miss Sarah Shepard Yates, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Dustin Blake Yates. ❖




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Planning an event?

Journal photos by Emil Wald

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HOOVER-RANDLE home & gardens From left, Bryan and Dorothy Ratliff with Honey and George Taylor.

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The Gaieties Club held a holiday dance Dec. 2 at the Birmingham Country Club, where members and guests were invited to “see and be seen behind the velvet rope at the legendary El Morocco.” Party chairman Margaret Ritchie and decorator Robert Hill transformed the East Room into café society’s most famous nightclub, with twinkling lights and El Morocco’s signature zebra print. Invitations announced that guests were welcome to don “jewels, furs and feathers.” Guests were welcomed by club President Carolyn Featheringill, with Ivan Rich, and party chairman Margaret Ritchie, with Tom – who also performed the job of doorman. During a cocktail hour, vintage pictures of El Morocco and its famous patrons were flashed on a large screen behind the bandstand, including the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, Bogie and Bacall, and Jackie O. Following cocktails, a dinner was served featuring she-crab soup and filet mignon. Seen in the large crowd were board members Cheryl Williams, Barbara Stone with Cris, Lucy Allison with Dan, Virginia Tucker with Tommy, Tootie Fash with Ken, Marlea Foster with John, Betsy Gresham with Bill, Jackie MacClary with Bruce, Becky Bates with David, Suzanne Wald with Mike, and Kimberley Freeman with Alan Nichman. Guests at the event included Patty Bromberg with Brooks, Susan Dasher with Charles, Honey Taylor with George, DeLynn Zell with Lee, Mary Steiner, Betty Tully, Win and Barbara Baird, Ann and John Baker, Coquette and Bill Barnes, Frances and Claude Bennett, Martha Bradford and Jack Powers, Lynn and Steve Briggs, Catherine and Bill Cabaniss, Nan and Buddy Carter, Shelley and Jerry Clark, Marie and Mike Cole, Millie and John Curtis, June and John Eagan, Cathy and Jack Echols, and Brownie and Barry Evans. Also in attendance were: Marjorie

Above, Dana McCarn, Jackie MacClary and Millie Curtis. Below left, Carolyn Featheringill with Ivan Rich. Below right, Kimberley Freeman and Alan Nichman.

Forney and Henry Lynn, Gerry andJim Gillespy, Maura and Will Goodwyn, Hettie and Howard Hall, Susan and Lee Hammontree, Anne and Barrett Hicks, Carolyn and Delmar Hill, Judy and Bert Hill, Joan and Carey Hollingsworth, Ann and Leland Hull, Susie and Ed Kissel, Barbara and Bobby Klyce, Dena and Bill Leitner, Joyce Ratliff and Bayard Tynes, Catherine and Lee Styslinger, and Betsy and Harry Miller. Couples dancing to nightclub favorite such as “Begin the Beguine” and “In the Mood” included Kim Morgan Day with Corbin, Dana and Pete McCarn, Marjorie and Jay Johnston, Helen

and Walter Gay Pittman, Sandra and Terry Oden, Tracy and Tommy Patton, Helen and Richard Pardue, Kathleen and George Petznick, Betty and Bill Phillips, Natasha and Richard Randolph, Dorothy and Bryan Ratliff, Marguerite and Steve Ray, Martha and Tom Roberts, Carolyn and Bill Satterfield, Becky and Kirby Sevier, Gail and Charlie Sharp, Mary and Terrell Spencer, Bettie Boyd and Brian Sullivan, Katy and Charles Terry, Jeanie and Lee Walthall, Doris White and Joe McCracken, Doris and Jim Wilson, Janie and Walter Wilson, Kay and Jim Wooten, and Sallie Aman White with Carlos. ❖


Photos special to the Journal

Roger James and Zane Rhoades.

Symphony of Nibbles

SVC Celebrates the Holidays With Party Traditions The Symphony Volunteer Council of the Alabama Symphonic Association gathered for its annual holiday party Dec. 4 at the Vestavia Hills home of Dr. Chandler Smith and Jane Smith, who are SVC members and patrons of the Alabama Symphony

Thursday, January 26, 2017 • 15


Orchestra. Vice presidents of membership Martha and Bob Black joined the Smiths in welcoming guests as they entered. Early arrivals included Bob and Shirley Brown, Diane and Herb Rossmeisl, Gerda Carmichael,

Bettie Davenport, Debby Moll, and Roger and Linda James. One of the traditions of the holiday gathering is for SVC members to bring their most prized holiday sweet and savory nibbles. Among the guests who took treats to the kitchen and dining room were Lynne and Michael Meeks, Debbie Reed, Roberta and Jim Atkinson, Lin and Jim Musgrove, Terry and Jack Standridge, Kathie Ramsey and Susan Mason. Vice presidents of hospitality Phyllis Davis, Betsy Cooper and

Sandra Wilson alternated greeting newcomers and presiding in the kitchen, where Martha Black’s famous eggnog was the focus of the party. Husbands Tom Davis and Bob Wilson served as bartenders in the adjoining room. President Char Bonsack brought the evening to a close with an update on the 2017 Decorators’ ShowHouse and introduction of co-chair Molly Bee Bloetscher. Spotted around the festively decorated dining room with its heavy-laden table were Debbie McDonald,

Robert Raiford and Zane Rhoades, Lowell Womack and Gloria Braune, Tallulah Hargrove, Mimi Jackson, Mary Wimberley, Joyce Wise, Deb and John Sellers, Debby and Bob Kristofco, Eric and Cheree Carlton, Emily Omura, Liz and Tom Warren, Jane and Grady Moore, Peggy and Denis Devane, John Maloof, Nan and Phil Teninbaum, Diane Ray, Virginia and Boyce Guthrie, Nancy Delony, Elaine Hornberger, Peggy Kennedy, Stephanie Currin, and Joy and Bill Denton. ❖

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Sharing Arts and Letters

Birmingham Group Supports Young Artists The Birmingham Chapter of the National Society of Arts and Letters met at the Birmingham Country Club on Dec. 21, continuing celebrations of the club’s 60th anniversary. With a mission to support young artists in art, dance, drama, literature and music through performance opportunities and scholarships, the chapter will host its annual competition with the theme of classical ballet. Vice President Gail Ledbetter Hill introduced Margery McDuffie Whatley, a Steinway artist and Birmingham-Southern College Conservatory of Fine and Performing Arts faculty member. Whatley presented a program on Franz Liszt and performed his Hungarian Rhapsody Number Six.  President Peggy Carlisle introduced guest Bobby Skelton, 2015 winner of the Birmingham Chapter’s NSAL Drama Competition and current Samford University student. Assisting in organizing the event were Ruth Jensen, registration, and Nancy Jones, table decorations. Sue Watkins gave the invocation. Other members and guests in attendance were: Judy Anderson, Edie Barnes, Edith Bauman, Laine Crook, Patricia Dice, Marcia Drennen, Judith Hand, Jane Hinds, Melva Jones, Miriam McClung, Jeannine McElroy, Catherine Rogers, Carolyn Satterfield, Barbara Shepherd, Loree Skelton, Chandler and Jane Paris Smith, Mildred Allen Taub, Nancy Whitt, Anna and Eloise Williams, Maxine and Keith Williams, and Janice Zeanah. New members in attendance were Patricia Dice, Emily Omura and Margaret Kovit. ❖

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Photos special to the Journal

16 • Thursday, January 26, 2017

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Barnhart with daughter Catherine Pewitt and granddaughter Margaret Pewitt. Other alumni attending included Jeannie Dodson, Jenny Brown, Margaret Ann Webb, Argie McDonald, Martha Grizzle, Anna Hartzog, Patricia Stutts, Catherine Gross, Susannah Camp, and Ginna Gardner. Active members who joined in on the festivities were Anne Cadman Graham, Elizabeth DeAtkine, Frances Carson, Katie Lupton and Claire Godwin, Chandler Law and Scout Treadwell, Elizabeth Nabors and Callie Anderson. ❖


Thursday, January 26, 2017 • 17


Photos special to the Journal

Isabel Sandoval, Caroline Ousley, Mackenzie Yelton, Abbie Smoke, Bailey Johnson, Maggie Beans, Hailey Thompson, Ellie Barrentine, Meghan and Cailyn Levant, Caroline Parrish.   Lucy Hart, Mary Jane Young, Alexandra Andrews, Ann Thomas, Sadie Gurkin, Clair Kicklighter, Abby Poole, Katherine Dodson, Meredith Vines and Grace Huldtquist were also there to enjoy the yearly tradition. ❖

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A Celebration of Sisters

The annual Chi Omega Alumnae Christmas Tea was held Dec. 11 at the Vestavia Hills home of Jennifer Edge McMahon and her daughter, Lindsey. More than 100 guests attended, including alumni and actives from various chapters, with many mother and daughter duos. Guests in attendance included DA and Collier Tynes, Ivy and Lauren Ann Holmes, Lindy and Elise Walker, Susan and Ellie Gray, Glenda McPherson, Ashley Wilbanks, Sarah Stewart and Sealia Wilbanks, Kelley Evers, Leigh Ann

and Mary Katherine Smyth, Leigh and Grace Belcher, Anne Murray Cotten, Jana and Ashley Crim, Beth Adams, Amy Beans, Amy and Mary Jane Young, Katie and Frannie Howell, Sandy Emory, Suzanne Andrews, Andrea Reynolds, Suanne and Emily Anne Beauchaine, Katherine Gorham, Lila and Claire Killian, Lani Graphos, Stephanie and Sarah Michael Whishenhunt, Ashley Tatum, Anne Schilleci, Katherine Rhody, Nancy Hall, Laura Covington, Marcia Thompson, Terri Ferguson, Sandy

Johnson, Kelly Ousley, Dawn Smoke, Roxanne Given, Jennifer Chewning, Sally and Mary Claire von Eschenbach, Meghan Hanbarrier, Leigh Moore, Margaret Kloess, Cathy Hart, Ann Thomas, Elizabeth Levant, Nancy Faulkner and Kay West. Active Chi Omegas home for the holidays and enjoying the festivities were Helen Hall, Allison Rhody,


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Rehab Reality by Jeff Butler

Everyday is Groundhog Day

We’ve all seen the movie starring Bill Murray. He has to repeat Groundhog Day over and over until he gets it right. Call me crazy, but I see a lot of that movie in addiction and alcoholism. Murray’s character is a self-centered, sarcastic and arrogant misanthrope. That might not be true of all addicts or alcoholics, but it’s more accurate than it isn’t. Drinking and drugging are two of the most selfish things a person can do. I can say this. I lived it for years.

In the movie, every morning at 6:00 AM, the day repeats. Open Thur. - Sat. 10am - 4:30pm The same day ... over and over again. Murray’s character has fun with it for a while. He plays tricks on people and manipulates situations, but eventually that gets old. This To: Babara is what it feels like when To:MountainMary Robbins From: Over The Journal,Charles PHONE: 205-823-9646 you’re in active addiction, no From: Over The Mountain Journal, 205-823-9646 ph., FAX: 205-824-1246 with our Exclusive 18KT Gold matter the substance. It’s fun 205-824-1246, fax Diamond Rings Date: January at first, but eventually you’re Date: May 2010 just going through the same This is your AD PrOOF from the OvEr THE MOuNTAiN JOurNAl for the motions over and over again. January 2016 issue. Please approvalTHE or changes to 824-1246. This is your AD14,PROOF from thefaxOVER MOUNTAIN All the joy andJOURNAL happiness for are the June 3, 2010 issue. Please fax approvalgone. or changes to 824-1246.

Please make sure all information is correct, including address and phone number! character PleasePlease make is correct, initial sure and fax all backinformation within 24Finally, hours. Murray’s himself, if we have not heard from you by 5 pm of the Friday before the press date, your adreevaluates will run as is. We print the paperchanges Monday. including address and phone number! his behavior and starts Thank you for your prompt attention. engaging in the lives of those around Recovery is the Please initial and fax back within 24him. hours.

Katie Howell, Mary Jane Young, Lindsey McMahon, Jennifer McMahon and Anne Murray Cotten.

samebefore way. the Youpress have to get If we have not heard from you by 5 pm of the Friday date, your ad will run as is. We print theout paper of Monday. yourself. You have to

take an honest look at yourself Thank you for your prompt attention. and you have to fix what is broken. What happens to Bill’s character when he finally does these things? The same thing that will happen to you when you seek help... the clock moves forward to a bright and beautiful future. Call us when you’re ready to reset your clock.

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Retrofitting a Neighborhood Families Expand Homewood Houses to Fit Modern Needs or Start From Scratch

‘It’s really got such a warm feel. You know you are looking for a house in the right place when you have kids everywhere. It makes you feel like a kid again when you are an adult.’

Photos courtesy Willow Design Studios


Willow Design Studios’ Allison Hallman said her firm last year worked on 25 Homewood houses, either total construction projects or major remodels. Below, a recent teardown on Broadway.


LTHOUGH SPACE IS LIMITED, Homewood real estate is growing – in a manner of speaking. “People add on to the back, build up or start from scratch,” said Willow Design Studios’ Allison Hallman. Hallman is an owner and designer at the firm, which operates in tandem with Willow Construction Company in Homewood. She said her firm last year worked on 25 Homewood

Journal photo by Maury Wald

By Sarah Kuper

houses, either total construction projects or major remodels. Hallman cites a good school system and community pride as reasons the area is so popular. “It is very walkable,” she said. “It is convenient to other things, it has great school districts, people are outside all the time going to the parks, biking, organizing walking carpools.” Homewood newcomers Stuart and Maggie Misner couldn’t agree more. See EXPAND, page 20


Daniel Brooks’ class on antiques, will celebrate its 45th year this spring. Last semester, Brooks’ course celebrated record enrollment with 93 students.

Photo courtesy Samford University

‘I’ll repeat a theme but I won’t repeat a class. There is one woman who hasn’t missed a single semester in 20 years.’ DANIEL BROOKS


Antiques Class Among Samford Academy of the Arts’ Spring Offerings By Emily Williams Samford’s Academy of the Arts has opened enrollment for the spring semester, allowing community members to take courses offered by Samford faculty as well as local artists and musicians. The program, previously known as

Thursday, January 26, 2017 • 19


the Samford After Sundown program, offers classes in antiques, languages, art, photography and music in its own building near Homewood High School, across the street from the main campus. The spring semester begins in February. The longest-running class, Daniel Brooks’ class on antiques, will cele-

brate its 45th year this spring. Last semester, Brooks’ course celebrated record enrollment with 93 students. A graduate of Samford University himself, Brooks has enjoyed being able to contribute to his alma mater. “Being able to give something back to Samford means everything to me,” he said. “It is wonderful to see

item is worth, I always ask what it is worth to them,” he said. Brooks believes that an antique’s value can’t be assigned just monetarily, the value of its history and story has its own worth. Brooks’ relationship with antiques

the community embracing the university just as Samford embraces this community as well as many others.” Brooks believes that the continued popularity of the course is because his course isn’t a real-life “Antiques Roadshow,” it’s a lesson in history. “When someone asks me what an

See ANTIQUES, page 21

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This is your AD PrOOF from the OvEr THE MOuNTAiN JOu January 14, 2016 issue. Please fax approval or changes to 8

Please make sure all information is co including address and phone numbe Please initial and fax back within 24 hours.

if we have not heard from you by 5 pm of the Friday before the pres your ad will run as is. We print the paper Monday.

Thank you for your prompt attention.

20 • Thursday, January 26, 2017

EXPAND, From page 18

“We were looking for a home to raise kids. Homewood was a nobrainer,” Stuart Misner said. Though mature trees give Homewood neighborhoods an established feel, Hallman said her clients often are anything but. “Primarily what we see are young couples trying to grow their families. We call ourselves the ‘baby makers’ because by the time we finish a proj-


HOME ect the couple is expecting!” In fact, the Misners welcomed their first baby in December. As new parents, they are more conscious than ever of the family-friendly atmosphere in Homewood. But for all its popularity, making a Homewood house a home can be a major undertaking. As was the case for many industrial towns in America, the Homewood area experienced a housing boom during and after WWII, when the population increased more than 70 percent, according to the

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The Misners describe their remodeled home, above and below, as having a transitional feel with modern and rustic aspects. A breakfast nook with a shiplap accent is one of their favorite features.

Encyclopedia of Alabama. But now most of the original Homewood houses are not compatible with the needs of today’s families. “Families just don’t live like that anymore. Things are more casual and less formal. People want open floor To: Jim plans to keep sightlines on kids,” From: Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 Hallman said. FAX: 205-824-1246 This was especially true for the Date: May 2015 Misner’s Edgewood home. This is your AD PrOOF from the OvEr THE MOuNTAiN JOurNAl for the “Every room was partitioned off. It looks completely different now – Nov. 4 2010 issue. Please fax approval or changes to 824-1246. more open concept. The den flows into the dining room and kitchen,” Misner said. A master suite, large laundry 2700 19th Place South • Homewood • 871-9779 room and flexible spaces such as Tue.-Fri. 10:30-5:30 • Sat. 11:00-4:30 offices and bonus rooms are on the Please initial and fax back within 24 hours. wish lists of most of Hallman’s cliif we have not heard from you by 5 pm of the Friday before the press date, ents. To accomplish those goals, her your ad will run as is. We print the paper Monday. firm has to get creative. “It is like puzzle pieces. We work Thank you for your prompt attention. hand in hand with homeowners to find the best use of their budget while still getting the kitchen and flex space they want,” Hallman said. The Misners were fortunate enough to secure their Edgewood property before it even went on the market, but things got trickier from there. “Remodeling a home ... I would say it was stressful. You are starting with only what you know. We knew, ‘Wow this house has a lot of work to do,’ but further than that we were To: Tricia just trusting builders and their From: Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 vision,” Misner said. FAX: 205-824-1246 Hallman said first-time home Date: Nov. buyers or remodelers aren’t familiar with This is your AD PROOF from the OVER THE MOUNTAIN JOURNAL forthe theprocess or the pricing. “A couple really wants a big Dec. 1, 2016 issue. Please fax approval or changes to 824-1246. scope of work but no one is sure how Please make sure all information is correct,much things cost. So we start with their wish list and peel back as we including address and phone number! need to.” Plus, Hallman said, there is a Please initial •and fax back within 24 hours. Decorator Fabrics Hardware • Trim needthetopaper planMonday. for the unexpected. If we have not heard from you by 5 pm of the Friday before the press date, your ad will run as is. We print “It really is like the TV shows,” Thank you for your prompt attention. she said. “There are going to be sur1820 Greensprings Highway 322-5878 prises when you knock down a wall.” www.kingcottonfabrics.com “When we started taking apart the house and seeing the guts, there were

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more rotting areas than we thought. Plus things like difficult weather were an issue,” Misner said. Hallman and her team acknowledge that Homewood has a certain look and that’s why designers start with a craftsman-style house, which was the popular style when people were first building in the area. From there, they figure out how to situate the home on the plot so it

tional feel with modern and rustic aspects. A breakfast nook with a shiplap accent is one of their favorite features. Neutral palettes with functional but unique accents and appliances are top trends in Willow Design homes, along with as much natural light as possible. From start to finish, Misner esti-

‘Primarily what we see are young couples trying to grow their families. We call ourselves the ‘baby makers’ because by the time we finish a project the couple is expecting!’ ALLISON HALLMAN, WILLOW DESIGN STUDIO

doesn’t clash with the rest of the neighborhood. “We always start out looking at how it is if you are seeing it from the street. It may still look like a small house in the front but open up in the back,” Hallman said, “But of course some still want that large street presence.” The Misners describe their remodeled home as having a transi-

mates their remodel took about five months. Now that their Homewood home is suited to their needs, they are on to enjoying what the town has to offer. “It’s really got such a warm feel. You know you are looking for a house in the right place when you have kids everywhere. It makes you feel like a kid again when you are an adult.” ❖


ANTIQUES, From page 19

‘We have to realize that we aren’t so much the owners of these items, but caretakers.’


and love of their history goes back to his childhood growing up in Camden. “We lived in an old house that was built before the Civil War,” he said. “I also grew up hearing stories from my older family members.” Brooks’ grandmother told stories of her experiences during the war and the first time she saw Union soldiers. His appreciation for the history of items carried him through college and his career. Before his retirement in 2010, Brooks was director of the Arlington House Museum and Gardens for 25 years. For anyone looking to get into the antiques game, Brooks said it is important to first realize what makes an antique special. “We have to realize that we aren’t so much the owners of these items, but caretakers,” he said. He feels it is important to appreciate the history behind items as well as learn respect for them. There are three main points to take into consideration when honing an appreciation for antiques: learn about an item’s history; determine the condition of the piece; and respect the items, because they will stick around longer than their owner.


“What has made this class last is because this class isn’t just about objects, it’s a lesson in history,” he said. “Students often learn a lot about themselves as they explore

Thursday, January 26, 2017 • 21

their own items that brush with their genealogy.” Brooks has students who return each year to take the course again. He prides himself on creating new ways of teaching certain lessons so they don’t turn stale for returning students. “I’ll repeat a theme but I won’t repeat a class,” he said. “There is one woman who hasn’t missed a single semester in 20 years.” Helping keep things fresh is new research on antiques and their history. “We’ve had speakers come each year from as far as England,” he said. Topics in Brooks’ plans for this semester will follow a special theme. Coinciding with the bicentennial of the territory that is now Alabama, Brooks will use items from Alabama’s past to paint a picture of the state’s history. Brooks hopes that his students will walk away from class with a deeper appreciation of the state as well as a renewed awareness of the intrinsic value of those items that will outlive people. In addition to Brooks’ course and other staples of the Samford After Sundown, the Academy of the Arts has added courses in French, Italian and Spanish and ESL courses for multi-lingual community members. For more information, visit samford.edu/academy-of-the-arts. ❖


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With the land around the Little Professor Book Center in Homewood bought by a developer, the store is planning to remain on the same street but move a little closer to its former location near The Curve. Though the space Little Professor representatives have found will be new to them, the proximity to what owner Paul Seitz calls the “heart of Homewood” is familiar. When Seitz first opened the store in May 1973, the location was right on The Curve, at 2901 18th St. South, and it remained there until October 1992. “We’ve spent 20 years on The Curve and 24 years at this location,” at 2717 18th Street South, Seitz said. “Hopefully, we’ll have 20 more years at our new spot.” With the new location in a hub of activity, Seitz said he hopes to see his devoted customers return and some new faces filter in. The customers are Seitz’ favorite aspect of his job. Before 1973, Seitz never considered himself a future owner of a bookstore. He was a baseball man and played professionally for the Birmingham Barons, but when it came time to find a different path, he stumbled on a franchise of bookstores. “When I started, there were 125 locations of Little Professor,” he said. “Now there are only three locations and we are one of them, one of them is in Ohio and one is in California.” Seitz points to the ease of internet purchasing for the diminishing of independent bookstores, but the internet can’t provide what he prides his

Journal photo by Emily Williams

By Emily Williams

‘When I started, there were 125 locations of Little Professor. Now there are only three locations and we are one of them, one of them is in Ohio and one is in California.’ PAUL SEITZ

Homeward Bound Little Professor Plans Move Back to the ‘Heart of Homewood’

store for offering. Over the years, he has kept a staff of passionate people whom he defines as the best resource when looking for a book. His employees come equipped with suggestions for customers who enter the store with-

out a clue as to what they want. “These people are book lovers and they know everything about the product,” he said. “The people that work here are unbelievable.” Some of the staff who will be making the move with Seitz include

employees with 20 years at Little Professor and others with just two years. After his 43 years with Little Professor – 44 years in May – Seitz admits he’s slowed down a bit, but he has no intentions of calling it quits.

“This store has been totally pleasure,” he said. “It’s wonderful to work with the clientele and see them coming back.” Once he knew that the store would have to be moved, Seitz knew he wanted to stay in Homewood, but he considered other options. Cahaba Heights was briefly a possibility. Seitz isn’t releasing the specific location chosen for the bookstore because the contracts aren’t yet final. But he said that, while the space is perfect for the bookstore, it will not accommodate Crape Myrtle’s Cafe. “We did look at some places that were big enough for both of us, but it just didn’t work out,” he said. Crape Myrtle’s Cafe owner Jim Muir stated he is currently hunting for a new location to relocate the cafe. The opportunity arose to remain on 18th, and Seitz said he couldn’t be happier as he looks forward to what he hopes will be a new era for the store. He is especially excited to be more a part of the events that draw in foot traffic, such as the Homewood Chamber of Commercesponsored sidewalk sales. To prepare for the move, the Little Professor is marking much of its current inventory 30 percent to 50 percent off. Seitz said he hopes to see folks leaving the store with armloads of literature. “It’s not so much a liquidation sale as a ‘help us move’ sale,” he said. “We want to get rid of the stuff we have here so we can order new stock for the new store.” ❖

Seeing is Believing

By Emily Williams As owner, publisher and editor-in-chief of Alabama Wedding Magazine since 2001, Michelle Van Every is using everything she knows about the wedding industry to give Alabama brides a new resource for choosing their vendors. In the spirit of the magazine, Van Every is hoping the Believe Bridal Showcase will introduce future brides to the professionals who can make the wedding they dream about a reality. Unlike the trade shows she has attended over the years, Van Every said, the show she has created will showcase the talents of each vendor. “It will be a boutique bridal show experience,” she said. “Unlike a trade show, where they have those large booths … vendors will set up these vignette scenes that will show their work come to life.” Van Every, who described the showcase as a gallery, said the idea is to keep the show as interactive and visual as possible. Brides will enter and pass a gallery that displays the work of photographers. A beauty bar will highlight makeup artists and hair dressers, and a runway show will feature fashions for the wedding party. “This just brings everything together for a

bride,” Van Every said. “They have so many ideas and then to actually have to bring those ideas to life is overwhelming.” Not only does she hope that the conversational setting will help the brides understand the ins and outs of wedding planning, she also hopes it will shed new light on the abilities of local vendors. For wedding planners, such as Christopher Confero designs, Van Every said, it’s harder to create a visual representation of their abilities, so they will create a wedding or reception scene and explain how the look was created and where the pieces came from. “They will bring their ideas to the brides, as well as educate them on what it takes to create the look,” she said. Van Every said brides often are unaware of the work and money it takes to create “the dream wedding.” “Things change from the moment you see them on Instagram to the moment you see it in person,” she said. “You see flowers at Publix or Winn-Dixie and think it costs that much to make an arrangement, but you don’t take into account creating the design and the work it takes to bring it all together.” While her publication sparks ideas and spotlights the abilities of local vendors, providing a

forum for her readers to interact with the people who create the work displayed on the pages of her magazine is the purpose of the showcase. “I love bringing the girls’ dreams together,” she said. She believes her favorite part of the showcase will be the same as her favorite part of planning each issue of Alabama Weddings – the look on a bride’s face. “Even the models in our photo shoots – they put on these beautiful gowns and you see it in their faces, they just fall in love,” she said. The showcase is just another way to show brides that, even if the planning seems overwhelming, there are professional people available to help make everything possible. Van Every has teamed up with the Grand Bohemian Hotel to host the Believe Bridal Showcase on Feb. 19 from 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tickets will be available at the door for $20. “The Grand Bohemian is one of the vendors we are showcasing and the space they have given us is perfect for that boutique feel we are trying to create,” Van Every said. As for the looks a bride can expect to see in the vignettes, Van Every feels it will be similar to the theme of the January issue of Alabama Weddings – traditional. “We’re taking it back to our roots this year,”

Photo special to the Journal

Alabama Wedding Magazine Teams Up With Grand Bohemian for Bridal Showcase

Michelle Van Every, center, owner, publisher and editor-in-chief of Alabama Wedding Magazine, with David Haugen, left, and Christopher Confero of Christopher Confero Design.

she said. “Everything is feminine, Southern, classic and traditional,” Van Every said. For more information, visit alabamaweddingsmagazine.com or check out the Believe Bridal Showcase Event Facebook page. ❖


Journal photo by Jordan Wald

Gathering for High Point’s grand openning last week were, from left, Daniel Dillon, John O’Brien, Craig Peavy, John Wiygul and Cory Varden.

MSSO Presents Holiday Donations to Seven Charities

The Birmingham Bar Association recently elected Leila H. Watson to serve as its president for 2017. Watson is a co-founder and principal of Cory Watson Attorneys and has been an active member of the bar. Bar members also elected Alan T. Rogers as president-elect, and he will assume the role of president at the end of 2017. Rogers is a partner in Balch & Bingham, LLP. The immediate past president of the association is Robert P. MacKenzie III, managing partner for Starnes Davis Florie in

Birmingham. Maxwell H. Pulliam, Jr., a sole practitioner, was elected secretarytreasurer. Bar members also elected at-large members to the Executive Committee. They are Conrad Anderson, Pat Clotfelter, Cedrick Coleman, Kimberly Perkins and Brandon Prince. New section representatives include Leigh Forstman, Stevan Goozee, Paul Greenwood, Virginia Miller, Grace Murphy, David Nomberg, Virginia Patterson, Jay Wright, Peter Wright and Carl Randall. The elections took place during the bar’s annual meeting in December. ❖

The checks were presented during a holiday lunch and meeting held Dec. 15 at Danberry at Inverness. 2017 board members also were inducted during the meeting. The donated funds are presented each calendar year from money paid as membership dues.

Freeman Named a Leading Physician of the World

Dr. Arthur M. Freeman III, of Mountain Brook, recently was named a Leading Physician of the World by the International Association of HealthCare Professionals. According to a press release, Freeman was chosen by the organization for demonstrating excellence in leadership, patient care and achievement in his specialty of psychiatry. In addition to being named a leading physician, Freeman was recognized by the organization as the top adult psychiatrist in Birmingham. Freeman has been in practice as Dr. Arthur M. a psychiatrist for Freeman III more than 49 years and serves as an adult psychiatrist with Pitts and Associates. Additionally, he is a clinical professor of psychiatry at Tulane University’s School of Medicine. After graduating from Indian Springs High School, Freeman attended Harvard University as an undergraduate before attending medical school at Vanderbilt University. He continued his training in psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University and the University of London before serving the military with the United States Navy. Following military service while teaching at Stanford, Freeman edited the book “Psychiatry for the Primary Care Physician.” He has previously served as vice-chair of psychiatry

Photo special to the Journal

To conclude 2016, the Medical Social Service Organization of Greater Birmingham, a charitable nonprofit the members of which are social workers and healthcare professionals, presented its annual donations to seven local service organizations. Those organizations are: KultureCity, McCoy Adult Day Care, The South Highland Adult Day Care Center, Perenity Flower Ministry, Collat Jewish Family Services, Disability Rights and Be a Santa to a Senior. “It has been so rewarding for MSSO to contribute to these worthy organizations,” said Megan Gregory, immediate past president.

Birmingham Bar Elects New Officers

2016 and 2017 Medical Social Service Organization of Greater Birmingham Officers, from left: Julie Marcus, Diane Caver, Connie Blalock, Ellen Buffington, Megan Gregory, Ann Lynn, and Kathy Hasty.


High Point Climbing and Fitness celebrated the grand opening of its first Birmingham location Jan. 18. Before the grand opening, the center held a soft opening Nov. 10. The location is the third facility that owner John O’Brien has opened. The other two locations are in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Along with city and company officials, O’Brien and partner John Wiygul, ceremonially cut the ribbon to recognize the official opening of the gym. Throughout the day, High Point offered half-priced day passes and, just before the ceremony, it held a reception with food, beer and other beverages. The facility, at 4766 U.S. 280 in the old Next Fitness location, features climbing walls for a variety of skill levels as well as a weight and aerobic room and yoga space. Climbing equipment can be rented or purchased in the gym’s pro shop.

at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, chair of psychiatry and dean of the Louisiana State University School of Medicine-Shreveport, and chair of psychiatry at the University of Tennessee School of Medicine, Memphis. Board certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, Freeman is considered an expert in the treatment of major depression and bipolar disorder and holds professional memberships with the American Psychiatric Association, the American College of Psychiatrists and the Southern Psychiatric Association, for which he has served as president.


High Point Celebrates Grand Opening of First Alabama Location

Thursday, January 26, 2017 • 23



24 • Thursday, January 26, 2017


Out of Africa

BGIS Students Spent MLK Day Volunteering

The students of Brock’s Gap Intermediate School’s community service group, BUCS Club, spent their day off for Martin Luther King Jr. Day serving the community. The students joined forces with Youth Serve Birmingham and helped clean the historic Bethel Baptist Church in the Collegeville community, where the late civil rights leader the Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth served as pastor. According to school officials, students in the BUCS Club, which stands for Believe, Unite, Contribute, learned through the service day about the rich history of Birmingham. Students prepared care packages for senior citizens and backpack programs in area schools, as well as delivered packages to Birmingham police officers at the North Precinct.

CBS Teacher of the Year Makes Connections from Uganda to the U.S.

‘The most important part of an elementary classroom is the community that you foster as a teacher.’ profit organization that supports and builds children’s homes in Uganda. “School in Uganda is very different from Mountain Brook,” Lunceford said. “Class sizes are much larger – 40 to 60 students per classroom – in Uganda, and they do not have materials such as books, computers or even pencil sharpeners.” According to Lunceford, about the only materials they use in a Ugandan classroom is the chalkboard and their pens and papers. Regardless of the material differences between Ugandan and Mountain Brook classrooms, Lunceford said she found the same curiosity and willingness to learn in the students. “They can all be coached to solve 1 col by problems 5 inchesand think for themreal-world selves. $250 That is one of the things I enjoy

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Lauren Lunceford, who recently was named Cherokee Bend Elementary Teacher of the Year, had the opportunity this past summer to volunteer with Sozo Children, a local nonprofit organization that supports and builds children’s homes in Uganda.

place where they feel their contributions and work are valued, and she calls on other teachers to do the same. If they feel that their voices are being heard, they will speak up more often, she said. “One of the most important things I teach my second-graders is that they can do anything they put their mind to,” she said. “Problems may not always be easy to solve, but if you keep trying and learn from your mistakes, you will find a solution.” ❖

recommendations with their classmates,” she said. “Sometimes it is difficult for students to find that just right book, and they need a little extra help and encouragement from me.” Even if it takes a bit longer, seeing a student find a book that they truly love and want to share with their friends makes any extra effort worthwhile, Lunceford said. Lunceford also works to make the classroom a safe place for students, a

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sftwr, processes & components; Support mainHomewood Middle School tenance & upgrades to hardware, operating sysstudent Nathan Jones took tems & sftwr; Lead recovery testing; Troubleshoot servers, desktops, networks, apps & databases; home first prize at the 2017 Identify security issues; Dev. & maintain server District Spelling Bee. Our Lady architecture; Dev., document, & enforce server of Sorrows Catholic School standards. Requires Bachelors (CompSci/Acct/ Stats/Math/rltd) & 8 yrs. exp. Must have exp.student J.T. Weisberg was w/: design, install, diagnose, & test computernamed runner up and Shades operating systems & sftwr; operating systems & Cahaba’s Margaret Keith took components; IT support, networking, end user third. computing policies & procedures; systems administration; network connectivity & communica-Next month, Jones will tions sftwr; shared storage concepts; Unix & Linux participate in the Jefferson servers, LAN/WAN, AIX, JFS2, RHEL/SLES, ext2/ County Spelling Bee. ext3, NFS, samba, bind & DNS, DHCP Server, FTP/VSFTP, GPG/PGP, NTP, sendmail, syslog & syslog-ng, TCP/IP, Operation of Power & Intel servers, IBM products p-Series (p570/740/770) From left, Margaret Keith, servers, DS series (DS4800, DS8000), XIV storage, Shades Cahaba; J.T. TS3300 series tape libraries, VIO, LPARs, HMCs, IBM Director, RPM Packaging Manager, NIM,Weisberg, OLS; and Nathan Jones, Homewood Middle shell scripting (bash, PERL, AWK & SED), mksysb & NetBackup, HACMP sftwr, GPFS, WorkloadSchool. Analyzer, Adv. Power Virtualization & VCS, SANs, SANS SVCs & VTLs.

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Will Pearson, co-founder of the magazine Mental Floss and former Simmons Middle School student, spoke to students at a recent all-school assembly. He spoke with students about the opportunities he created by bringing his own ideas into reality. Pearson, a Hoover native, and a friend wanted to combine knowledge and education in a fun and entertaining way. According to Pearson, as college students he and his partner had no idea what it took to run a magazine, but they knew what they were passionate about and worked hard to create Mental Floss magazine in 2001. Pearson has appeared on “The Today Show,” traveled the world, served as an executive producer on National Geographic Channel’s “Brain Surgery Live,” and co-authored books. “Be exceptional. If you do well, you gain so much more,” Pearson said in his speech. Another idea Pearson shared with students was one of respect. He said that the most successful people he has encountered in his life are those who have a true respect for others regardless of gender, religious choice, residence, race, disability, finances or age.

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Third graders at Vestavia Hills Elementary West entertained family, friends and fellow students with a Christmas program Dec. 8 and 9. Under the direction of West’s music teacher, Trudye Confessore, the students performed new and familiar tunes, incorporating music from different time periods and parts of the world. The students sang a Jamaican song accompanied by tubano drums and other percussion instruments. A rendition of “Silent Night” was presented both lyrically and in sign language. The show concluded with a sing-along, inviting the audience to join them for “Deck the Halls” as the students sang a partner song.

Simmons Hosts Mental Floss Co-Founder

Photos special to the Journal

Cherokee Bend Elementary secondgrade teacher Lauren Lunceford may have started her teaching career at the Mountain Brook school, but her experiences volunteering in Africa have shaped her approach to education. Lunceford, who recently was named the school’s Teacher of the Year, had the opportunity this past summer to volunteer with Sozo Children, a local non-

most about teaching in both of these contexts,” she said. Through her experience working with teachers in Uganda and elsewhere around the world, Lunceford has developed a passion to help make education available to all children. She also tries to educate her students about other cultures. One of the favorite moments of her career was when the Sozo Children’s Choir traveled from Uganda to the states and performed at Cherokee Bend. “It was when my two worlds collided,” she said. “My students at CBS already knew so much about Uganda and the Ugandan culture from me sharing stories and pictures from my travel, but it all came to life when they were able to interact with the children from Uganda.” Regardless of class size and location, Lunceford is a lover of elementary education – teaching the basics and seeing each student become confident in reading, writing, math and science. As she’s grown from instructional aide to teaching kindergarten and then second grade, Lunceford said her teaching style has remained the same: take each student’s unique needs into account. “The most important part of an elementary classroom is the community that you foster as a teacher,” she said. Her favorite thing about second grade is the students’ growing passion for reading. Taking into account each student’s interests and skill levels, Lunceford and her students pick out those “just right books.” 1 col byabout 4 inches “They get really excited making their book choices $200and sharing book

Journal photo by Emily Williams

By Emily Williams

From left: Simmons Middle School Principal Brian Cain; Will Pearson, cofounder of the magazine Mental Floss and former Simmons Middle School student; Tonya Rozell, Simmons assistant principal; and Kevin Erwin, assistant principal.


Thursday, January 26, 2017 • 25


Vestavia Hills High School’s Student Government Association presented a donation of $50,100 to Unless U, a Vestavia Hills organization serving adults with developmental disabilities. Below, an Unless U student performs during an assembly at Vestavia Hills High School Jan. 12. Cleveland said in a released statement. The donation amount is a culmination of VHHS’ fall philanthropy drive, spearheaded by the SGA and including events such as powderpuff football, a talent show and a homecoming barbecue. “This will give us more resources to get what we need,” Cleveland said. In addition to the money, students also donated numerous items to support operations of the organization.   Opened in 2014, Unless U provides continuing education and activities for adults after leaving high school, Cleveland said. The organization hopes to use the money to move into a facility of its own. Unless U now is housed in classrooms at Shades Mountain Baptist Church. ❖












On Jan. 12, Vestavia Hills High School’s Student Government Association presented a donation of $50,100 to support a local cause. The check was presented to Unless U, a Vestavia Hills organization serving adults with developmental disabilities. It is one of the largest donations the school has ever made to a local organization. SGA President Millie Cadden said many Vestavia Hills High School students felt a personal connection to Unless U. Unless U founder Lindy Cleveland said the contribution far exceeded her expectations. “It’s incredible to see how these students rallied around our cause,”

Photo special to the Journal

VHHS Students Donate $50,100 to Unless U

26 • Thursday, January 26, 2017




Sims Herron

Journal photo by Marvin Gentry

Patrick Nuss

Palao of Hoover, Champ Stewart of Briarwood, James Edwards of Vestavia Hills and Douglas Henze of Spain Park.

Journal photo by Marvin Gentry

share placekicking duties on the squad. Hoover’s Taylor leads the way on the defensive front along with Ricky

Journal photo by Marvin Gentry

Garrett Farquhar

Jacob Bodden

Larry Wooden

Antarius Mitchell

Journal photo by Marvin Gentry

Journal photo by Lee Walls Jr.

Journal photo by Marvin Gentry

Christon Taylor

Mason Dillard

Journal photo by Marvin Gentry

Hoover players qualifying for the 2016 All-Over the Mountain team include, front row from left: Garrett Farquhar, C.J. Sturdivant, Jacob Bodden, Cortez Hall, Shedrick Jackson and Barrett Pickering. Second row: Ricky Palao, Christon Taylor, Kholbe Coleman, K.J. Vault, Will Singleton and Ben Abercrombie.

Journal photo by Marvin Gentry

than 13 Bucs qualified for the squad, which was chosen by the Over the Mountain head coaches. In addition, Hoover defensive lineman Christon Taylor was named as the 2016 Over the Mountain Player of the Year. The coaches also named Briarwood’s Fred Yancey, who led the Lions to a 12-2 mark in their first season in Class 5A, as the Over the Mountain Coach of the Year. Taylor, a senior, was a dominant force for the state’s best defensive unit, making 85 tackles with 61 assists for the 2016 season. He sacked opposing quarterbacks for losses 14 times and was credited with 10 quarterback pressures. Taylor recovered three fumbles in 2016 while causing six others. “Christon Taylor was a force,” said one opposing coach. “He was one of those players who had a knack for being wherever the ball was going.” Yancey, the dean of head coaches in Shelby County, guided Briarwood to one of its finest seasons in years, advancing to the third round of the Class 5A playoffs. “When you look at the great coaches in this area, it’s truly an honor to be named Coach of the Year,” Yancey said. “But it really isn’t about me. An award like this is a tribute to our young men and the hard work they did to put together a great season. They deserve the praise, not me.” Three quarterbacks were chosen for the squad: Garrett Farquhar of Hoover, William Gray of Briarwood and Hamp Sisson of Mountain Brook. The running backs were C.J. Sturdivant of Hoover, Larry Wooden of Spain Park, and Daniel Salchert of Oak Mountain. Salchert’s dad, Danny, was an all-Over the Mountain selection as a Vestavia Hills quarterback in 1980. Chosen for the offensive line were Jacob Bodden of Hoover, Hunter Whatley of Briarwood, Price Delk of Mountain Brook, Ben Wilke of Oak Mountain, Brent Stover of Spain Park, and Patrick Nuss of Vestavia Hills. Barrett Tindall of Briarwood was chosen as the tight end. The wide receivers on the team were the Hoover duo of Cortez Hall and Shedrick Jackson, along with Sims Herron of Mountain Brook. Barrett Pickering of Hoover and Mason Dillard of Mountain Brook

Journal photo by Marvin Gentry

From page 28

Douglas Henze

The linebacker corps is composed of Will Wetzler and Connor Bussman of Mountain Brook, Antarius Mitchell of Homewood, Mark Hand of

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Briarwood, Jackson Murphy of Oak Mountain, Kholbe Coleman and K.J. Vault of Hoover and Houston Hollis of Spain Park. Members of the all-Over the Mountain secondary are Ben Abercrombie, Jayden Jordan and Will Singleton of Hoover, Tucker Queen of Vestavia Hills and C.D. Daniels of Homewood. The punter is Nick Carney of Oak Mountain. ❖


Thursday, January 26, 2017 • 27


Young Guns

Sophomore Pair Hopes To Help Lady Spartans To Track Title

Spain Park ended Mountain Brook’s amazing 38-game home winning streak last week. Jamal Johnson, left, and Sean Elmore battle for the ball in the Jags’ 66-62 win over the Spartans.

BASKETBALL, From page 28

themselves once again to be a bona fide candidate to reach the BJCC’s Legacy Arena in late February – and perhaps go even further. Despite a couple of unexpected losses, Mountain Brook continues to be everything its fans have come to expect in the Bucky McMillan era – a team that plays fundamental basketball with very few mistakes. The difference in this year’s team is the presence of a blue chip major college prospect in sophomore Trendon Watford. Watford scored 34 points in the loss to Spain Park and offers a scoring threat every time his team takes the floor. The Spartans are ranked third in the latest Class 6A polls. Based on its past – and present – Mountain Brook may still be the Over the Mountain team with the best shot at making it to the Final Four. Homewood – the defending boys Class 6A champion – hasn’t turned heads with its overall record, but coach Tim Shepler’s team always finds its game in February. Don’t be surprised if the Patriots make a serious run in the post-season. In girls play, the reemergence of the Hoover Lady Bucs is a significant story. The return of former Hoover star Krystle Johnson as head coach may have been the catalyst to bring the team back to its glory days. Nobody has a better understanding of the basketball culture at Hoover than

Johnson, who also played college ball at UCLA and the University of Alabama. Hoover suffered a defeat at the hands of Class 6A’s Homewood earlier in the year, but not many teams in any classification come out of a game against the Lady Patriots with a victory. The Lady Bucs are well on their way to being one of Alabama’s elite programs again. Hoover ranks second in the latest Class 7A poll. Spain Park has also had a strong year in girls play, reaching the number six spot in the poll. Oak Mountain isn’t yet ranked but isn’t far behind. Speaking of Homewood, coach Kevin Tubbs’ team is once again one of the dominant programs in Class 6A. With a team composed mainly of freshmen and sophomores, the Lady Patriots won the state championship in 2015 and followed with a runnerup finish last year. That season-ending defeat has been a motivating factor for the team in the new season. Another plus is the return for star forward Ajah Wayne from a severe knee injury in last year’s final against LeFlore. Wayne is leading the team in scoring and is approaching full speed status. Homewood is currently ranked number two in the polls. Despite this being an exceptionally strong year for Class 6A girls basketball, the Lady Patriots are an odds-on favorite to reach their third consecutive Final Four. So as January becomes February, stay tuned. A lot of great basketball is straight ahead. ❖

If not for her close friend Sophie Jane Knott, Holli Chapman might never have become a part of the Mountain Brook girls track and field team. “We were in the seventh grade and I was playing soccer,” Chapman recalled. “Sophie Jane suggested that I get into track. She kept asking me, and finally I agreed. By eighth grade, I loved track so much that I gave up soccer.” Chapman’s decision has paid off. If the Lady Spartans win their first indoor state championship in four years, it could well be because of the efforts of Knott and Chapman, who have developed into two of Alabama’s most impressive sophomore runners. Knott – the great-niece of former Mountain Brook coach David Knott – has produced a time of 59.98 in the 400-meter run, currently the fourth-best time in Class 7A. Her personal best at the pole vault is 10-6, the second-best height in Class 7A this season. Chapman has run the 400 meters in a time of 58.70, currently the third-best time in Class 7A. She’s also completed the 60-meter run in 8.06, good for seventh in the state. Her best distance in the long jump is 15-7, presently the eighth best in Class 7A. Both excel in the 4x200 and 4x400 relays. With the state meet coming up at the Birmingham Crossplex on Feb. 3-4, both girls believe their team has a shot at winning the blue championship trophy that arch-rival Hoover has owned for the past three years. “I think we’ve got a good shot because we’ve worked really hard,” Knott said. “We’ve been focused in practice and in our meets and we have a lot of good chemistry. If we run well, our team has a really good chance to win.” Chapman agreed. “If you expect to win the state, everybody has to run well,” she said. “Nobody can afford to have an off day. That’s especially true if you’re going against Hoover and the other great teams that reach the state meet. But if we do that, we’ll be fine.” Both girls run outdoor track for the Lady Spartans as well as indoor and say there are differences in preparation for the respective venues. “The indoor meets come before the outdoor season so most runners aren’t going to be in quite as good shape because it’s so early,” Knott said. “Also the track is smaller. In indoor, the 400meter run is two laps instead of one, which is a little bit harder to manage. And with indoor, you don’t have to worry about the weather.” Although much of their high school careers are still ahead of them, both Knott and Chapman have a deep appreciation for Mountain Brook’s great tradition in girls track and field. “It’s really cool to come to school

Photo special to the Journal

Journal photo by Lee Walls Jr.

By Lee Davis

Holli Chapman and Sophie Jane Knott have developed into two of Alabama’s most impressive sophomore runners.

success will be senior Anna Grace every day and see all the trophies we Morgan, whose older sister Madeline have won for girls track, even going also was a star runner for the Lady back to before I was born,” Chapman said. “Mountain Brook track is just like Spartans. Chapman said the underclassmen on the team are grateful for the a long relay run where they pass the leadership of their older peers. baton from generation to generation. “There are no cliques on our team,” Now it’s our turn to be successful. It’s an honor to a part of this and it’s some- she said. “Everyone supports one another and works together. At thing we all take very seriously.” Mountain Brook, track is considered a Knott added that maintaining that team sport as opposed to an individual tradition comes with a price. “To continue to win, we have to put sport. That’s all part of what we’re taught from the day we start running.” in a lot of hard work,” she said. If the Lady Spartans claim the “Nothing will ever come easily, so all indoor title, it could well be because we can do is our best and hope everySophie Jane Knott and Holli Chapman thing works out.” their lessons well. ❖ Another key to Mountain JoyLeague60 ad_Layout 1 1/12/17Brook’s 5:04 PM Page learned 1

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Young Guns Sophomore Pair Hopes to Help Lady Spartans to Title PAGE 27 LEE DAVIS

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Hoover’s Taylor Leads All-OTM Football Team; Lions’ Yancey Named Top Coach By Lee Davis Any advocates of the idea that the Hoover Bucs’ longtime domination of high school football in Alabama is waning will have to come up with some fresh arguments this winter. The Bucs’ 17-7 win over defending Class 7A champion McGillToolen last December gave Coach Josh Niblett’s team its fourth state crown in five years and the school its 10th title in the 21st century. Hoover went 13-2, with both losses coming to

Journal photos by Marvin Gentry

Members of the 2016 All-Over the Mountain defensive team are, front row from left: Jackson Murphy, Oak Mountain; Nick Carney, Oak Mountain; Douglas Henze, Spain Park; Houston Hollis, Spain Park; Damon Wright, Spain Park; Tucker Queen, Vestavia Hills; and James Edwards, Vestavia Hills. Second row, from left: Champ Stewart, Briarwood; Mark Hand, Briarwood; Antarius Mitchell, Homewood; C.D. Daniels, Homewood; Will Wetzler, Mountain Brook; and Conner Bussman, Mountain Brook. Not pictured: Walter Thomas, Vestavia Hills. See page 26 for members of the 2016 All-Over the Mountain defensive team from Hoover high school.

Members of the 2016 All-Over the Mountain offensive team are, front row from left: Patrick Nuss, Vestavia Hills; Daniel Salchert, Oak Mountain; Mason Dillard, Mountain Brook; William Gray, Briarwood; and Coach Fred Yancey, Briarwood. Second row, from left: Price Delk, Mountain Brook; Barrett Tindall, Briarwood; Hunter Whatley, Briarwood; Larry Wooden, Spain Park; and Brett Stover, Spain Park. Not pictured: Hamp Sisson, Mountain Brook; Sims Herron, Mountain Brook; and Ben Wilkie, Oak Mountain. See page 26 for members of the 2016 All-Over the Mountain offensive team from Hoover High School.

out-of-state powers. Hoover’s team was imposing overall, but its forte may have been defense. The Buc defenders allowed

only three touchdowns against Over the Mountain opponents and only 76 points against in-state competitors. With those kinds of numbers, it’s

no surprise that Hoover dominates the 2016 Over the Mountain Journal AllOver the Mountain team. No fewer

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See ALL-OTM, page 26

another look. Spain Park’s stunning 66-62 upset of Mountain Brook in boys play last week is a sign that something special may be brewing. The Jags’ win not only ended the Spartans’ amazing 38-game home winning streak, but also offered evidence that after a slow start, Spain Park might be a legitimate contender for the Class 7A championship. Coach Donnie Quinn’s team struggled early in the season, no doubt in large part because of the loss of 6-foot-11-inch center Austin Wiley, who transferred out to a prep school before enrolling mid-year at Auburn University. In recent weeks, Jamal Johnson – who already has committed to the University of Memphis – has stepped up his scoring to offset Wiley’s loss and has helped the Jaguars find their rhythm. Johnson – the son of former University of Alabama star Buck Johnson – scored 31 points and added 12 rebounds in the win over Mountain Brook. For all the hype surrounding Mountain Brook and Spain Park, it might be easy for a casual fan to overlook Hoover, which has quietly put together a 20-4 mark to be ranked second behind Robert E. Lee of Montgomery in the latest Class 7A polls. The Bucs defeated the Spartans comparatively easily in a televised matchup on Jan. 5 and are showing See BASKETBALL, page 27

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