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Otmj Thursday, November 19, 2015


over the mountain journal ❖


Thanksgiving Traditions Sharing Food and Fellowship life Page 10


‘worldchanging wish’ Dr. Sarah Parcak, UAB’s modern-day Indiana Jones, is the recipient of the 2016 TED Prize. news Page 10

otmj holiday gift guide

into the mystics Annual Halloween parade draws enthusiastic crowd in Crestline. social Page 20

Our annual roundup of top toys and perfect presents for eveyone on your list. begins on Page 28

2 • Thursday, November 19, 2015


Thriller Night

murphy’s law

GBHS Hosts Halloween-Themed Evening

Greater Birmingham Humane Society Auxiliary hosted Howls & Growls Oct. 30 benefiting all of the animals and programs of the Greater Birmingham Humane Society. The planning committee included Christy King, Donna Hightower, Lynn McCallum, Mary Hayes, Melanie and Bill Perry, Ashley Halford McCollister, Liz Holland, Carol Coppock, Missy Ellis, Margaret Ellis, Tricia Preston, Janet King, Eleanor Walter and Donna O’Brien. The benefit, held at Iron City, was attended by more than 800 people and raised $90,000 for GBHS. Dressed in their best and most creative costumes, the attendees enjoyed an open bar and danced the

in this issue About Town 4 people 8 news 10 life 14 social 18

weddings 27 toys 28 Gift guide 30 schools 46 sports 52


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

Thanking Ahead


Photo courtesy of Kenwyn Alexander

night away to Black Jacket Symphony performing Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.” While taking a break from the dance floor, the crowd posed for a “Step and Repeat” photoshoot with photographer Kenwyn Alexander. This is the first Howls and Growls benefit, and judging from the success and high spirits of the evening, it may become a tradition. ❖

that when she orders the “Slashers II” t’s coming. Everyone will be sitting you requested she might mistakenly there at the Thanksgiving table tryjust type in “Slashers” and wind up ing to decide between having secin some dark internet alley where no onds of the candied yams or the green grandma should ever go. Not only will bean casserole (they’ll have both), it be embarrassing, but poor Grandma when your dear grandma, the one who may feel compelled to make an emerbrought her famous ambrosia salad, gency call to her pastor because she’s will turn to you and say, “So Jimmy, worried about your future.   what do you want for Christmas?” Now, I’m big on freedom of speech Now Jimmy, if you are in elemenand all that, but for heaven sakes, run tary school, feel free to burst forth your list through the grandma filter exuberantly with your heart’s desire. before you speak. Books? Yes. “50 Barbie doll, Hot Wheels, Coddle-MeShades of Grey?” No. CD’s? Sure, Elmo – Grandma will do her best to just nothing with an explicit language get it for you. That’s what grandmas warning on the label. do.    Sue Murphy And don’t just say “a shirt” Teens and tweens, Grandma loves because, no matter how old you you, too, which is why I’m going to are, you will always be Grandma’s suggest that you take a moment to Little Dumpling, her Moon Pie, her consider your response. Now, you Precious Butter Bean. Remember know exactly what you want. How Barbie doll, Hot the pink fuzzy bunny costume in “A could you help it? The very air we Wheels, Coddle-MeChristmas Story”?  Enough said. breathe right now is filled with giftI know, right now you’re thinking possibilities, and you’ve done Elmo – Grandma will ing, “Fine, I’ll just say a gift card” a lot of sorting and sifting before do her best to get it and that’s OK, but remember what arriving at your final picks. I’m just for you. That’s what the great columnist Miss Manners asking that you pick the right one to used to say: “It’s supposed to be a tell Grandma.  grandmas do. gift, not a shakedown.”  Here’s why: Last year, I was Sometimes our seasonal gifts sitting in a waiting room with a become nothing more than in-kind grandmother who was doing some social obligations. Give a gift, get a desperate searching on her laptop gift, check. You and Grandma are closer than that. as she waited to see the doctor. She turned to the perIt’s a tough situation, my friend, so how about son next to her and said, “My grandson says he wants this: “Oh, Grandma, you always pick out something a Death Warp Rasta Poncho in black and silver but I wonderful. What do you want for Christmas?” She’ll can’t find it.”  Please don’t do that to poor Grandma. Don’t ask her say, “Nothing,” but she’ll be very pleased that you asked and you will have kicked off the Christmas seafor something that will be hard for her to find. Yes, if son with a kind and generous heart. Grandma is computer-savvy you could send her a link, Just for the record, I’m betting that you’ll get a but even then, there could be problems. Do you want gift card and you can go buy the Death Warp poncho to be the reason your grandma gets daily emails from yourself. But no matter what Grandma gives you, send Lulu’s Lingerie? Do you want her to get gamer updates a thank you note, a paper one with an envelope and a on the release of “Slashers III: Born to Burn” complete with examples of its lifelike gory graphics? Bad enough stamp and everything. Grandmas love that. ❖

over the Mountain Views We asked students at the Jefferson State Culinary and Hospitality Institute...

What are you thankful for?


J O U R N A L November 19, 2015 Publisher & Editor: Maury Wald Copy Editor: Virginia Martin Features Writer: Donna Cornelius Staff Writers: Kaitlin Candelaria, Emily Williams Editorial Assistant: Stacie Galbraith Sports: Lee Davis Contributors: Susan Murphy, 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. 25, No. 22

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 E-mail our advertising department at Find us on the Web at Copyright 2015 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.


“I have a little girl on the way, so I’m very thankful for that.” Ken Williams Hoover

“I’m thankful for the people around me.” Austin Brown Birmingham

“I just got a house, so I’d say I’m thankful to be a homeowner.” Cory Caldwell Hoover

“I’m thankful for family and friends.” Taylor Webb Vestavia Hills

For tips on the perfect Thanksgiving Dinner from their director and advisor, Chef Joseph Mitchell, see Page 14.

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 3

About Town








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4 • Thursday, November 19, 2015

About Town


Photos special to the Journal

Nov. 19 - Dec. 4

The new renovations at the Memorial Garden at the Birmingham Museum of Art include subtle lighting designed by Charles Stone.

Growth in the Gardens Red Mountain Garden Club Wraps Up Renovations, Hosts Sale

By Kaitlin Candelaria


Fine Jewelry & Collectibles

1811 29th Ave. South Downtown Homewood, AL 35209 | 205.874.1044 10% of all sales Dec. 2nD - Dec. 4th will be DonateD to the exceptional founDation.

Fans of the Memorial Garden at the Birmingham Museum of Art are in for a big surprise. Renovations of the garden, which is managed and cared for by the Red Mountain Garden Club, are complete after almost seven years of work. The garden was built almost 60 years ago at the museum’s thenentrance, but many things have changed in that time. Garden club member Elizabeth Poynor said that when she “inherited” the garden in 2007, it wasn’t in the best shape. She and her crew began working to bring more sculptures out of museum basements and storage to spruce up the garden while also employing Mountain Brook landscape architect Norman Kent Johnson and the New York-based Charles Stone as a lighting designer. All in all, it was a project that cost more than $125,000. Poynor said the club first turned to the Collat family and then to other families and businesses in Birmingham to make the renovation a reality. Now, eight years later, the renovations are finally complete and the club debuted the garden’s fresh look at a cocktail party in November. Garden club members and guests enjoyed wine and tapas while watching the garden’s new lights come on at sunset.

“I think it’s just brilliant,” Poynor said. “It’s artfully done and it’s very tasteful.” The Red Mountain Garden Club, which is affiliated with the Garden Club of America, is involved in a number of local projects to support its Memorial Garden and the Birmingham Botanical Gardens, as well as many other groups and organizations dedicated to the environment and the beautification of Birmingham, according to its website. Renovations at the garden aren’t the only renovations affecting the club this year. Because of renovations at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens, the club is moving its annual greenery sale to Rosewood Hall in Homewood this year. “All proceeds from our greenery sale every year go to the maintenance of the garden and we really depend on people shopping at the greenery sale to keep the garden going,” Poynor said. “That’s how we maintain it as a club.” The sale will be Dec. 2, 9 a.m.-1 p.m., on the first floor. Parking will be plentiful in the underground deck and visitors can purchase wreaths, mailbox decorations, kissing balls, garlands and boxwood trees in addition to a curated selection of gifts and arrangements. The sale is being co-chaired by Amy Ager and Kimberly Bean. Pre-order forms are available online at ❖


St. Paul and the Broken Bones with Seratones Alabama Theatre St. Paul and the Broken Bones will headline two nights of shows, each beginning at 8 p.m. Tickets begin at $27.50. For more information, visit www.

Thurs., Nov. 19 MOUNTAIN BROOK

Crestline Village Open House Crestline Village The merchants of Crestline Village will introduce the holiday season with their annual open house beginning at 4 p.m. Some merchants will also have special sales on holiday items. For more information, visit www. HOOVER

Sean Gaskell on the Kora Hoover Public Library Sean Gaskell will play traditional songs on the kora, a 21-string West African harp. This event is free and will include a Q and A session at the end. For more information, visit www.


Alabama Symphony Orchestra EBSCO Masterworks Series Alys Robinson Stephens Center Gary Thor Wedow will conduct Rameau Dardanus Suite, Rameau and Handel selected arias, Handel Water Music in D, Suite No. 2 and Haydn Symphony No. 101, “The Clock” as well as Celena Shafer, soprano, beginning at 8 p.m. each night. Tickets range from $24-$69. For more information, visit


Organizers preparing for Red Mountain Garden Club’s Annual Greenery Sale include, from left: Pratt Brown, Pratt Brown’s Landscapes; Kate Newton, Landscape Services and Kimberly Bean and Amy Ager, Greenery Sale Co-chairmen.

Jim Reed of Reed Books Library in the Forest Jim Reed is the owner of a vintage bookstore and museum located in downtown Birmingham. Reed will be on hand to discuss his shop and book discoveries beginning at 10 a.m. For more information, call 9784678.


Choo Choo! Magic of Model Trains Preview Party McWane Center The new Magic of Model Trains exhibit will include a viewing of the

Rocky Mountain Express in the IMAX theater. Also included in admission is access to the museum, hot chocolate and cookies, free train rides, a small popcorn and a free train whistle for children 12 and under. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit

BIRMINGHAM Market Noel Cahaba Grand Center The Junior League of Birmingham’s annual holiday market will include holiday festivities from Nov. 18-21. A preview party will be held Nov. 18 at 7 p.m. featuring music by Sean Heninger, silent and live auctions, hors d’oeuvres and more. Tickets to the party are $48. The market will be open to the public Nov. 19-21 from 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Nov. 19, 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Nov. 20 and 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Nov. 21. General admission is $12. The sale will include over 100 vendor stations and various scheduled special events. For more information, visit the Market Noel Facebook page or ❖

Sat., Nov. 21 HOMEWOOD

Drawing with Nature with Lori Nichols Homewood Public Library Lori Nichols, author of the children’s

book “Maple and Willow” will join guests for a morning of storytelling, drawing and art. This event is free to the public and begins at 10:30 a.m. in the round auditorium.

2617 Swiss lane Just Listed! Home located on a huge lot, on a lovely street. Full basement! Wonderful potential!

Photo special to the Journal

Mid-day Music with Kristine Hurst Cathedral Church of the Advent Kristine Hurst, soprano, will perform a free 30 minute concert beginning at 12:30 p.m. Hurst is an associate professor of voice and opera at UAB. For more information, visit www.

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 5

About Town


Junior League of Birmingham Steering Committee members, from left, Tate Maddox, Mary Lauren McBride, Meleesa Jack, Julia Myers, Paige Drew, Ginger Carroll Gray are making plans for the Market Noel preview party Nov. 18.

For more information go to

James Harwell

President, Bham Assoc. of Realtors

Over the Mountain Office 1220 Alford Avenue • 205.281.4731

Open House Sunday November 22

Hank Champion will be reading his book ‘If Your Monster Wears Pajamas’ at 1:00 p.m. For every two books sold he will donate one book to Children’s Hospital

To: From: Date:

James Over The Mountain Journal, 205-823-9646 ph., 205-824-1246, fax November

This is your ad proof from the over the mountain Journal for the november 19, 2015 issue. Please contact your sales representative as soon as possible to approve your ad or make changes. You may fax approval or changes to 824-1246.

Please make sure all information is correct, including address and phone number!

please initial and fax back within 24 hours.

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 the paper Monday.

Thank you for your prompt attention.

Monday-Friday 9:30-6:30 • Saturday 9:30-5:30 • Sunday 12:00-5:00 in November & December 2830 18th Street South • Homewood, AL 35209 • 205.879.3986. •

6 • Thursday, November 19, 2015

About Town



5th Annual Magic City Half Marathon Regions Field The Ruben Studdard Foundation for the Advancement of Children in the Music Arts will host their fifth annual 5K race as well as a fun run. Post-race festivities include craft beer, music and other entertainment. For more information or to register, visit www.

Join us for our Trunk Show on Wednesday, December 2 Thursday, December 3 MOUNTAIN BROOK

38th Annual Sam Lapidus Montclair Run LJCC This annual pre-Thanksgiving dinner run will benefit the Alabama Center for Childhood Cancer and Blood Disorders at Children’s of Alabama and the LJCC fitness program, Nov. 26. For the first time this year, a 5K will be included. Packet pickup will begin at 7 a.m. with an 8:30 a.m. start. For more information or to register, visit www. For more information, visit www. BIRMINGHAM

Family Volunteer Day Hands on Birmingham will host their annual service day. Locations include the Ronald McDonald House of Birmingham, Moss Rock Nature Preserve, Red Mountain Trail, North Hill Nursing Home, Ruffner Mountain and Tuxedo Neighborhood. For more information or to register, email Reginald May at


United Way Food Drive Birmingham Zoo Guests are invited to bring any canned or non-perishable food items to the Zoo. In return, those who donate will receive half-priced admission. For more information, visit www.birminghamzoo. com.


Cobb Lane Fall FestivALE Cobb Lane Beer enthusiasts can sample rare, seasonal and unique local beers beginning at 2 p.m. on picturesque Cobb Lane. This fifth annual festival will include vendors and is open to patrons 21 and older. For more information, visit

Thurs., Nov. 26

Happy Thanksgiving!

Sun., Nov. 29 BIRMINGHAM

Great Russian Nutcracker Alabama Theatre The Moscow Ballet will present this beloved holiday tradition at 3 p.m. Tickets begin at $30. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit

Mon., Nov. 30 HOMEWOOD

Monday Movie Double Homewood Public Library In celebration of the 150 anniversary of Lewis Carroll’s famous novel, Alice in Wonderland will be showing beginning at 3:30 p.m. in the large auditorium. Mad Hatter tea party snacks and hats will be available. For more information, visit HOOVER

Annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony

Hoover City Hall At 5 p.m., Hoover city officials will light the Christmas Tree at City Hall. For more information, visit www.hooveral. org.


Tree Lighting Festival Vestavia Hills City Hall Guests can enjoy entertainment, merchant giveaways, Santa, snow and the official lighting of the city tree beginning at 6 p.m. For more information, visit HOMEWOOD

Lighting of the Star Eighteenth Street This annual holiday tradition will kick off at 5:30 p.m. with coffee, cookies, hot chocolate and a performance from Homewood Elementary School students. For more information, visit


Holiday Open House English Village Store owners and shop keepers in the English Village are beginning the holiday season with extended hours and unique sales. For more information, visit


Holiday Open House Mountain Brook Village Holiday shoppers can enjoy a complete range of holiday shopping and dining during this annual event beginning at 4 p.m. For more information, visit www.

Dec. 3-Dec. 5 HOOVER

Scrooge! The Musical Hoover Public Library



Dec. 4 - 7pm | Dec. 5 - 2pm & 7pm | Dec. 6 - 2pm


Tyson Theatre - Vestavia Hills United Methodist Church 2061 Kentucky Ave., Birmingham, AL 35216

TICKETS: $15 General Admission | $25 Preferred Seating Available online at

CONTACT or Kelly Avery at 205.769.0140

December 12th ( 9am - 4 pm) & 13th (11 am - 4 pm) at Earthborn Studios

This classic Christmas musical will be directed by Jack Mann and presented in the the Library Theatre. It will show each night beginning at 7:30 p.m. and tickets are $25 each. For more information, visit

Thurs., Dec. 3 BIRMINGHAM

Birmingham Art Crawl Downtown Birmingham This rain-or-shine event takes place on the first Thursday of each month and spans the theater, loft and historic arts districts of Birmingham. Over 40 local artists and performers present their wares each month and some downtown businesses extend their hours for shoppers. For more information, visit VESTAVIA HILLS

Holiday Breakfast Vestavia Hills UMC The Crisis Center will host its annual holiday breakfast beginning at 7 a.m. in the Fellowship Hall. Attendees will enjoy a breakfast and learn more about the mission of the Crisis Center. This event is free and open to the public For more information, call 458-8995 or visit www. MOUNTAIN BROOK

American Girl’s Girls Just Like Me Festival of Trees Birmingham Botanical Gardens Beginning at 3:30 p.m., guests can enjoy crafting with fragrant plants such as evergreen and cinnamon, a short hike, a holiday story and delicious treats while learning how their favorite American Girls celebrate the holiday season. Tickets are $15. For more information, visit

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 7

About Town


Save The date Fri., Dec. 4 HOMEWOOD

Jingle All the Way Homewood Public Library Beginning at 6:30 p.m. in the large auditorium, storyteller Dolores Hydock and musical master Bobby Horton will mix traditional carols, jolly songs and holiday stories. The show will include light hors d’oevres. Tickets are $25. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit

23rd annual

Play Day!

let's Play!

23rd annual

Play Day!

Dec. 4-Dec. 6 BIRMINGHAM

Christmas at Arlington Arlington Antebellum Home and Gardens Guests can tour the house, gardens and old kitchen adorned with holiday decorations while enjoying refreshments, entertainment, warm cookies with Santa and children’s activities. Friday night’s activities begin at 6 p.m. and will include a $20 admission fee. Saturday and Sunday admission prices are for donations only. For more information including times, call 458-0360. BIRMINGHAM

Zoolight Safari The Birmingham Zoo New to this annual event are the glacier glide ice skating rink in the Trails of Africa and the 100-foot Yuletide Slide near the primate building. This year’s dates include Dec. 4-6, 11-13, 17-23 and 26-31 from 5-9 p.m. each night. Tickets are $8 and do not include special attractions. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www. ❖

Play Day In crestlIne vIllage Saturday November 21st • 9:00-4:00

Meet the reps and play with the toys. There will be toy manufacturers and representatives available to answer questions and to demonstrate products. FREE PRODUCTS given to a limited number of children. Drawings and giveaways from your favorite companies. Come meet Little Critter!

Huge Pre-Holiday

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Nov. 28th thru December 23rd Mon.-Sat. 8:30-7:00 Sun. 12-5

8 • Thursday, November 19, 2015


Spirited Effort Samford Professor Helps Tie God and Sports Together

By Kaitlin Candelaria

God is the top priority in Darin White’s life, but sports may be a close second. The Vestavia Hills High School alumnus and Samford University professor is using his passion for Christ and his love of sports to create a thriving new program at Samford. White serves as the driving force behind the university’s sports marketing program. The program, which is in its fourth year, is the only accredited one of its type in an AACSB accredited business school in the Southeast. Only 10 students are accepted each year, and they are given the opportunity to work alongside organizations such as the NBA to gain real-life sports marketing experience. “Throughout their junior and senior year, they’re taking six different courses that prepare them to work in the sports industry when they graduate,” White said. “Each of those courses has real life components and our program is very experiential. We work with dozens of sports organizations around the globe, from Harlequins Rugby Union in London to Nike in Oregon. It Greg culminates with a final senior capstone Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 RED MOUNTAIN THEATRE COMPANY project where we develop and presFAX: 205-824-1246 PRESENTS ent a strategic plan for a major sports Oct. 2015 property.” This is your AD PrOOF from the OvEr THE MOuNTAiN JOurNAl for the This year’s senior project involved an organization called The Daniel Nov. 5, 2015 issue. Please fax approval or changes to 824-1246. Summit. The Daniel Summit, which originally started out as a summer Please make sure all information is correct, conference in San Diego, dedicated to equipping Christian sports industry including address and phone number! executives to use their platform to positively influence our culture for God, Please initial and fax back within 24 hours. was looking to expand their organizaif we have not heard from you by 5 pm of the Friday before the press date, tion into a year-round endeavor and Join local your ad will run as is. We print the paper Monday. White had just the group of budding professionals sports marketing professionals to help. Thank you for your prompt attention. “We were asked to develop a fiveand the year strategic plan to grow the Daniel magnificently Summit,” White said. “It’s named the talented RMTC Daniel Summit because Daniel was Conservatory taken from his home and was put in Babylon and given a position of trestudents for



a new spin on holiday classics in this family-friendly variety show! R M TC


TICKETS AT (205) 324-2424

Samford University professor Darin White is the driving force behind the university’s sports marketing program.

Mountain Brook’s Hart Earns Eagle Scout Rank Connor Hart, a member of Troop 63 at Canterbury Methodist Church, earned the rank of Eagle Scout in June. Hart has served in many leadership roles within the troop and is a member of the Order of the Arrow. Hart’s Eagle Connor Hart project was to construct a covered pavilion over a brick barbeque grill and two picnic

Photo special to the Journal

Great Selection of Quality Merchandise


mendous influence. Babylon was the main cultural epicenter of that time – much like sports in our culture. Daniel did not sway from his commitment to God even though he was under significant pressure to conform to the society of that day. Instead, he boldly used the influence God had given him to significantly effect the culture.”

‘We work with dozens of sports organizations around the globe, from Harlequins Rugby Union in London to Nike in Oregon.’ White said that sports executives have the same opportunity to positively impact our culture if they, like Daniel, maintain a faithful devotion to God throughout their careers. He said the request for a strategic plan seemed like a perfect fit for his students. “It’s really neat that we’re getting to partner with this organization with the same mission that we have,” White said. “We’re doing it at a college level and they’re doing it at an executive level. Here at Samford, we’re all about producing outstanding students with a fantastic education and being able to give…(them) opportunities to go out in the world and have great success but hopefully also maintaining your faithfulness in God.” The students recently were given the chance to travel to Miami to present their plan to executives behind tables at East Lake United Methodist Church. Hart completed the project with the assistance of 10 other scouts from Troop 63, raising funds to cover the cost of construction and donating the remaining money to the church. Hart is a sophomore at Mountain Brook High School, where he is a member of the football team. He plans to seek admission to the United States Naval Academy upon completion of high school. Hart is the son of J. Mark Hart and Cynthia Lamar-Hart and the grandson of Mr. and Mrs. Robert O. Lamar III of Trussville and the late Mr. and Mrs. David R. Hart of Vestavia Hills.

The Daniel Summit. While in Miami, they also got to tour the new Miami Dolphins stadium and shadow Tampa Bay Buccaneers executives. White said these sorts of experiences are essential to his students’ success after college. “If I’m going to be able to have them hired when they graduate, the most important part of the whole entire process is their ability to network and build relationships within the sports industry, and that’s not going to happen by having them sit in the classroom at Samford day in and day out,” White said. So far, his students have landed in jobs with professional sports teams, NASCAR, PGA and various sports marketing firms around the country. White’s love for God and sports translates into other areas of his life, as well. When he isn’t busy teaching, he’s a member of the board of directors for the Alabama Sports Foundation and co-hosts a radio program on 93.7, a Birmingham-based Christian radio station, in which he discusses the relationship between sports and God. “Roxanne and Chris are the main morning DJs and I became really good friends with Chris last spring,” White said. “We started the program back in September and it’s about the marriage of sports and faith and how we can take our passion for sports in this community, and how can we use that (to) advance the kingdom and do positive things for Christ.” To learn more about Samford’s Sports Marketing program visit www. or follow him on Twitter @Sports_Biz_Prof. ❖

Toranto Honored with Eagle Scout Rank William M. Toranto, a member of Boy Scout Troop 53, recently earned the top scouting honor of Eagle Scout. He was recognized at a Court of Honor ceremony at St. Peter’s Anglican Church, the troop’s sponsoring church. Over the course William M. of five years as a Toranto scout, Toranto has earned 23 merit badges and has held

various leadership positions in his troop. For his Eagle Scout service project, Toranto removed an in-ground fountain from a courtyard at Mountain Brook Baptist Church. He then landscaped the area, which now provides a safe outdoor classroom for Sunday school children. Toranto is a junior at Mountain Brook High School, where he plays on the varsity lacrosse team. He is the son of Melanie and Steven Toranto.

ASFA Instructor Performs in Prestigious Beethoven Festival in Germany Alabama School of Fine Arts’ piano and music history instructor, Dr. Lucerne DeSa of Hoover, participated in the Beethovenfest Bonn music festival in Germany in late September. She performed music of African-American composers and Beethoven’s Op. 11 with clarinetist Marcus Eley. DeSa and Eley have known each other for 25 years and have performed together across the world, including a tour of South Africa under Dr. Lucerne the auspices of the DeSa State Department. “(Eley) and I have had the unique privilege of performing and recording the repertoire of African-American composers for many years,” DeSa said. “The invitation to perform at the prestigious Beethovenfest Bonn is a distinct honor.”

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 9



Dating back to 1874, Beethovenfest Bonn is the world’s premier Beethoven festival. Each year, top international orchestras, soloists, ensembles and young performers gather in the city of Bonn, Beethoven’s birthplace, for a month of performances.

Angels & Relics Photos Being Displayed in Hanceville Artwork from Homewood photographers Steve Kinney and Kathy Hagood is being exhibited at The Evelyn Burrow Museum in Hanceville as part of the “Angels & Relics: From Florence Italy, to Florence, Alabama,” display. The exhibit is made up of 60 photographs “that celebrate Steve Kinney exquisitely aged stone figures and vintage vehicles found and photographed primarily in the deep south, but also far beyond,” according to the website for the exhibit, angelsandrelics. Kathy Hagood com. Photographs in the exhibit by Hagood, a writer and photographer who now focuses on inspirational art, are primarily stone sculptures found in

museums, parks and cemeteries. The photographs by Kinney, an architect and fine art photographer, include such monuments, as well as photos of rusting cars and industrial machinery. “We enjoy giving a little more exposure to the beauty of bygone eras that might not be seen by as many viewers if not for our photographs,” the exhibit website states. “When something is made to last, it won’t forever, but for a time as it ages, it may become even more lovely in different ways than the original designer could have foreseen.” The photographs are being displayed in the Exhibit Hall in the Burrow Center for Fine and Performing Arts at Wallace State Community College. The Exhibit Hall is open Mondays through Saturdays during regular operating hours for the college. The exhibit will be on display through the end of the year. ❖

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10 • Thursday, November 19, 2015


u vestavia hills

Living Large and Local

Chamber Grows to Largest in Metro Area by Focusing on Members

Dr. Sarah Parcak, satellite archaeologist and associate professor at UAB, will receive this year’s TED Prize, including a $1 million dollar grant toward a project of her choosing.

u birmingham

UAB’s Resident “Indiana Jones” Receives TED Prize By Emily Williams Dr. Sarah Parcak, UAB’s modernday Indiana Jones, is the recipient of the 2016 TED Prize, following in the footsteps of Bono and Bill Clinton. The award, announced Nov. 8, includes a $1 million grant to launch a high-impact project guided by her “world-changing wish.” In addition, Parcak will have the opportunity to call on the aid of professionals in the TED community worldwide. Her project will be announced Feb. 16 at the TED Conference in Vancouver, British Columbia. “Sarah, our campus will be eagerly and proudly watching you on that stage and we look forward to the world-changing things you will do with this great opportunity,” University of Alabama at Birmingham President Ray Watts said at a press conference Nov. 9. Parcak is the first participant in the TED Fellows Program to receive the prize and works as an associate professor in UAB’s Department of Anthropology. She received her graduate degree from Yale University and her doctorate from the University of Cambridge, one of the oldest universities in the world. She received the TED Prize for her innovative work using satellite infrared imaging technology to uncover ancient archeological sites. According to Dr. Robert Palazzo, dean of UAB’s College of Arts and Sciences, Parcak recently has gained international attention for satellite mapping the entirety of Egypt and identifying 17 potential pyramid sites, 1,000 tombs and 3,100 settlements that previously had been unknown. She published the first textbook on satellite archaeology and uses her research to aid the Egyptian government in its efforts to

protect ancient sites from looters. “We are obviously quite proud of her achievements and look forward to a continued impact, not only in her own field, but in our broader understanding of civilization,” Palazzo said. Parcak said she knew when she first visited UAB for an interview that the university would do great things, which aided in her ability to start the lab where she conducts her research. “I think, right now, we are at a tipping point with our cultural heritage around the world,” Parcak said. “I feel so honored to have this opportunity to be able to work with the world and, hopefully, do something about it. I am but one of many people around the world that are doing work protecting archeological sites.” Parcak said the TED Prize is in honor of those who have supported her and those who have lost their lives protecting ancient sites. In an interview with WBHM’s Dan Carsen, Parcak said her colleague Khaled Asaad, chief archaeologist of Palmyra, in Syria, lost his life to looters, and many others have survived gunfire while protecting ancient sites, which often are looted for money to support terrorism. In addition to her research, Parcak is an avid supporter of children getting involved in science, specifically girls. She recently was honored with other local “superstars” at the Oct. 8 Girls on the Run “Evening of Empowerment,” which strives to unite women and girls in the community. In Carsen’s interview, Parcak admitted it is difficult to be a female scientist but said she hopes that by “breaking the glass ceilings” she is opening up opportunities for young girls to follow in her footsteps. For more information on the TED Prize, visit ❖

Karen Odle is seeing the fruits of her 13 years of work as the president and CEO of the Vestavia Hills Chamber of Commerce. The chamber this year reached 1,150 members, making it the largest chamber in the Birmingham metro area, according to a study by the Birmingham Business Journal published July 26. Vestavia’s chamber outpaces even its counterparts in Birmingham and Hoover. According to Odle and her marketing guru, Lisa Christopher, the achievement was met through the hard work of the chamber’s small staff and the superior customer service they seek to provide each of their members. The chamber also during Odle’s tenure has offered digital tools to its membership and helped pull together various entities pursuing progress in the city to work collaboratively. Odle accepted her job as CEO/ president of the chamber after serving as the Vestavia Hills school board president. “It’s fun and I enjoy what I do,” Odle said. “Actually, my previous career was at a phone company in systems design, where I designed computer and phone systems.” After welcoming her first child, Odle quit her job and devoted her time to raising her kids. When they started school at Vestavia Hills Elementary West, Odle became more involved in the community. She began serving in the PTA and soon became school board president, meeting Lisa Christopher along the way. When the time came for Odle’s predecessor at the chamber to move on, Odle turned in her application for the position. “I enjoy making a difference in the community,” Odle said. “I hope that I am.” When Odle took the position of president, she said, the state of the city was akin to silos on a farm. “The city was their own entity,” Odle said. “The chamber was their entity. The school was their entity. I think the difference has been that we now, while we are all still individual entities, are collaborative on everything we do.” In fact, the city of Vestavia Hills recently adopted the same logo the chamber uses and the city, chamber and school system have all launched new websites incorporating the symbol. The image includes the words unity, prosperity and family. One way the chamber, schools and city unite is through community caucuses held at the chamber offices. The meetings include city department heads, school officials and representatives from local non-profit organizations.

Journal photo by Emily Williams

Photo special to the Journal

By Emily Williams

Members of the Vestavia Hills Chamber of Commerce, from left, Katie Woodruff, Lisa Christopher, Karen Odle and Katie Guenn.

“It’s a good way for us to communicate,” Odle said. “We all sit around the table and ask what people are doing and what their next quarter looks like. Then, we ask them to take the information back to their organization and share it.” Beyond the partnership with organizations around the city, the chamber uses various tools to serve its members as well as community members. Under Odle’s eye, the chamber

luncheons it hosts at Vestavia Country Club. Each event averages about 200 people in attendance. Odle said the name of the game now is retention, which chamber officials hope to accomplish through service and amenities. “I’m huge on customer service,” Odle said. “If you don’t have good service then I don’t care what your product is.” The chamber provides advertise-

One way the chamber, schools and city unite is through community caucuses held at the chamber offices. The meetings include city department heads, school officials and representatives from local nonprofit organizations. has forged into the future with a new website and a mobile app. In its third year, the VH2Go mobile app recently reached 1,770 downloads. “It’s a really good tool and it’s nice to say that we are the only chamber in the area who has it,” Odle said. With VH2Go, users are able to categorically search a list of chamber businesses, the public library and more. In addition, the chamber’s new website will be home to a community calendar, a long-term goal of Odle’s. She and Christopher said the calendar will help businesses to schedule events without conflict with other organizations while giving the community a full list of the city’s goingson. “I wanted to grow our membership,” Odle said. “When I came on, we had 296 members, in August of 2002. We have really tried to maintain a relationship with each of our members.” Christopher said the size of the chamber can be seen at the monthly

ment for businesses with their yearly magazine and a community newsletter. Chamber members have the ability to use a conference room in the chamber office, and the “Shop, Dine, Play” campaign highlights local businesses and educates consumers on the benefits of shopping locally. “If someone asks for something, it’s never an automatic no,” Christopher said. “It’s an automatic: ‘I haven’t thought about that. We’ll talk about it.’” Christopher said the chamber’s customer service policy is how its new Young Professionals Board began. The program gives young professionals an opportunity to network, socialize and glean advice from various speakers. “Our philosophy is to underpromise and over-deliver,” Odle said. “We want to give people more than they expect.” For more information on the Vestavia Hills Chamber of Commerce, visit www.vestaviahills. org. ❖



u over the mountain

Jefferson County Opens Satellite Office in Hoover A new Jefferson County Revenue Office has opened in Hoover. However, expanded services won’t begin until the first part of next year, city and county officials said. Hoover and county officials held a ribbon-cutting ceremony Nov. 5 to mark the grand opening of the new county revenue satellite office in the Hoover Court Town Center off U.S. 31. The new office replaces the temporary facility at the Hoover Metropolitan Stadium. Even after opening the satellite office at the Hoover Met last year, Hoover city officials had been looking for a larger office within Hoover for a full-service revenue office. The new satellite office is about 10,460 square feet and initially will provide the same services as the office at the Hoover Met. “More services will be provided, but it will be in January or February before we start issuing driver’s licenses and business licenses,” said Hoover Mayor Gary Ivey. “For now, we’ll still just issue tags and titles.” The office also will serve county residents who need to pay property and county sales taxes. Hoover officials presented the county with a check for $100,000 to cover costs associated with the satellite office. The County Commission agreed to spend nearly $850,000 to build and equip the satellite office and signed a 10-year lease for the office space. County and city officials hail the new satellite office as an example of regional cooperation. “We’re really excited


about it,” Ivey said. “It’s going to be a huge asset to the city and the county. And it’s an example of true regional cooperation.” “The more regional cooperation we have, the more we can cut down on duplication of services,” County Commissioner Jimmie Stephens said. “We want to deliver government in a more efficient and effective manner, and this is the way to do it.” The county closed its Homewood revenue office in 2011 as part of costsaving measures due to decreasing revenues. There are no plans to reopen that office, Stephens said. —William C. Singleton III

u north Shelby

Brookwood Set to Open Emergency Department Brookwood Medical Center’s new freestanding emergency department at the intersection of U.S. 280 and Alabama 119 in north Shelby County will open Nov. 30. “This facility allows us to meet community needs by offering people from areas along U.S. 280 immediate access to a consistent level of high-quality medical care in times of emergency, when time is of the essence,” Bryan Westbrook, nursing director of freestanding emergency services, who will lead the new facility, said in a Brookwood press release. “It will offer robust capabilities and health care professionals with the expertise to handle a wide range of conditions.” Patients at the $19 million facility will be able to receive treatment for chest or


per month for 36 months

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 11

abdominal pain, head injuries, allergic reactions, strokes, seizures, fractures and cuts, among other conditions, according to the press release. The 25,000-square-foot facility will operate 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. It will be staffed by board-certified emergency medicine physicians, along with experienced registered nurses and full-time support employees. Specialty physicians also will be available aroundthe-clock. Brookwood officials expect the facility to receive 10,000 to 15,000 patient visits a year for emergency and outpatient care. Brookwood’s freestanding emergency department offers: 12 beds, including designated rooms for trauma, obstetrics and mental health; a comprehensive diagnostic center, including mammography, MRI, CT and X-ray scans, as well as a pharmacy and lab; and a helipad and 24-hour, on-site ambulance service to take patients to a full-service hospital if needed. Patients will be able to check in online at and be given an estimated treatment time, to cut down on waits at the emergency department. “The opening of the new freestanding emergency department on U.S. 280 fulfills a long-standing goal of Brookwood Medical Center to make health care more accessible and convenient for people in north Shelby County,” said CEO Chuck Stark. “Because the facility will be staffed by Brookwood’s well-respected ER team, patients can be assured they will receive the same level of care they

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12 • Thursday, November 19, 2015



Honoring veterans

u Hoover

Aldridge Gardens Hosts Groundbreaking on Veterans Project Aldridge Gardens in Hoover recently broke ground on its Veterans Memorial Arbor project. According to the gardens’ website, the arbor will span the 125-foot dam on the lake. “It will include a ceremonial area overlooking the water and will feature all of the service branch flags, as well as the U.S. flag,” the website said. “The arbor will have comfortable seating areas and will be covered by flowering vines. The supporting cast iron columns will have a unique modern design.” Families and friends can donate money to dedicate columns, pavers, light poles and benches to veterans. To celebrate the groundbreaking, many Hoover dignitaries – including City Council members, Hoover Chamber of Commerce members, gardens board members, Kay and Eddie Aldridge, Mayor Gary Ivey and local veterans – visited the gardens on Nov. 9 for a special ceremony. The Hoover High School Ten Bucs

Journal photo by Kaitlin Candelaria

By Kaitlin Candelaria

Capt. Robert A. Beaty, retired U.S. Navy and chairman of the Hoover Veterans Committee, with Eddie Aldridge.

Old Glory

Retired Hoover Firefighter Says Military Service Was Worth the Sacrifice By Kaitlin Candelaria

Journal photo by Kaitlin Candelaria

Michael Thorin has been asked more than once whether his service to the United States was worth it. The veteran and retired Hoover firefighter spent four years as an active member of the army before joining the Alabama Army National Guard, where he served for 20 years. He’s done multiple stateside tours and spent time in Afghanistan as an Army medic and in Iraq dealing with convoy security and transport operations. Thorin returned to the United States and set his sites on working for the Hoover Fire Department. “(Hoover) was the best department to go to work for,” Thorin said. “It’s notorious for being a hard department to get a job at because they require so much for you and the interview process is really strict. For me, it was a matter of pride. It was something I wanted to do, I needed

Since retiring from the Hoover Fire Department, Michael Thorin, left, has been recognized by the city of Hoover with the Freedom Award.

a job to provide more for my family and I was determined to get a job there. Plus I like the area.” Thorin was hired on in October 2008 and spent the next 5½ years serving the Hoover community. However, in early 2014 he began noticing that things weren’t right with his health. “I tried regular doctors and they said nothing was wrong,” he said. “After passing out on the job in April 2014, I started the process of early retirement.” After actively pursuing a diagnosis for his onset of mysterious symptoms, Thorin was finally diagnosed with Chronic Multi-Symptom Illness, formerly known as Gulf War Syndrome. “A lot of people say that if I didn’t serve, I wouldn’t have these problems,” Thorin said. “But if I wouldn’t have joined, I wouldn’t have gotten a job at Hoover. I never would have met my wife, I never would have been in the position to take care of (my wife and children) for as long as I did and I wouldn’t be in the position to be as resilient as I am right now.” Now, Thorin uses oxygen and a cane to get around. He suffers from severe asthma attacks multiple times a day. “There are certain things that a man doesn’t want to admit in his life, one of which is that there are some things you can’t control,” Thorin said. “My family has seen me on my knees. They’ve picked me up off the floor.” Despite his difficulties, Thorin stays positive. He says his faith has enabled him to take joy in even his worst days. “The story of the apostle Paul has become one of my favorites,” Thorin said. “I think about his comments about taking joy in the present. He considers it pure joy to go through these things because he knows what the finish line is going to bring. At the beginning and the end of the day,

Worth auditioned men’s group performed the national anthem to begin the ceremony, in which Aldridge Gardens board member Mark Davis and Ivey spoke. Davis, a veteran, and board member Debbie Elliot worked together on the concept of using the arbor to honor veterans. The arbor is part of the master plan for the gardens and originally was dreamed up in 2012. In early 2015, the board, on the recommendation of Davis, decided to name the project the Veterans Memorial Arbor. Since then, Davis has been leading a fundraising campaign to raise the $100,000 necessary for the project. According to gardens officials, he has raised about half the needed funds. Ivey said projects like the arbor are what remind him that, despite all the bad in the news each day, the U.S. is the greatest country on Earth. The new arbor will be dedicated next year on Veterans Day. For more information or to contribute to the Veterans Memorial Arbor, visit www.aldridgegardens. com. ❖

I’m happy for what I’ve got. It hurts to breath right now, but it’s a joy because I know I’m still breathing.” Destined for Service

Thorin said he always knew that the military would be a part of his future. As a teenager growing up in Dora and Sumiton, he spent time tearing down old buildings before getting a job at the local Food World. Two years later at the tender age of 17, Thorin left for basic training. “I’ve always been extremely grateful for our country and extremely patriotic, so it was in the cards for me to be in the military at one point or another,” he said. After returning to the United States from Iraq in 2006, Thorin said it was difficult to adjust to civilian life. However, his job as a Hoover firefighter made a huge difference. “All through the military, you’re basically trained to follow the rules and orders (from) above,” Thorin said. “In the oath of enlistment, we’re charged to obey the orders of the president and those appointed over us, so I’ve always been used to following a chain of command. The fire service and police departments are the closest to that chain you can find.” However, Thorin said his experiences in Iraq were never far behind him. “Even in the fire service, I stayed so uptight,” he said. A traumatic experience involving a Humvee engulfed in flames plagued Thorin with fear and anxiety. “Every time we ran a car fire or a house fire, I was constantly having nightmares about that incident,” Thorin said. “I was having those problems at work over the last few years and had all the signs of PTSD but didn’t want to be diagnosed with it because it seemed to me like admitting defeat and like it’d pull me away from my job.” Now that Thorin has retired, he has been diagnosed with and is working to control his PTSD. PTSD is one of many diagnoses Thorin has received in the past year. Also on the list are chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, interstitial lung disease and chronic pain. Although Thorin is still not positive what part of his service caused him to fall ill, he said that soldiers serving See thorin, facing page

Real-Life Rosie to Speak at Homewood Library The founder of the American Rosie the Riveter Association will speak Nov. 23 at the Homewood Public Library about her experiences during World War II. Dr. Frances Carter, then Frances Tunnell, began working in 1942 at the Parsons Airplane Modification Center in Birmingham, drilling holes and riveting B-29 bombers. She married paratrooper John Carter after the war ended. She returned to school and taught home economics at Samford University.  Carter founded the ARRA on Dec. 7, 1998, to honor the working women of World War II. Since then, the group has Dr. Frances grown to more than 4,000 Carter members, including working women of WWII along with their descendants. Carter began ARRA after she and other real-life Rosies were invited to share their experiences at the Little White House in Warm Springs, Georgia, where President Franklin D. Roosevelt often vacationed. After sharing their stories, “We decided we had a legacy to leave and the best way to do it was to form an organization,” Carter said. Carter is co-author of “R is for Rosie the Riveter: Working Women on the Home Front in World War II,” written with Nell Carter Branum and illustrated by Louise Barbour. The Nov. 23 event will be from 3:30-4:30 p.m. in the library’s round auditorium and is free to the public. Snacks, crafts and bandanas will be available for guests. For more information, call 332-6619. ❖

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 13



schools salute veterans

Photos special to the Journal

CLOCKWISE from left: Greystone Elementary School fourth graders Kimsey Lindsey, Evyn Williams and Alex Lloyd traveled with their classmates to Col. Robert L. Howard State Veterans Home in Pell City on Nov. 9 to perform their Veterans Day Program. Cadets from the Homewood High School ROTC program participated in a flag folding ceremony at Homewood Middle School on Nov. 10. Ivan Aguilera, Jorge Villanueva and Kierra Stinson are pictured with the folded flag.

to the ideals of freedom.” Thorin says now, he and other vetFrom previous page erans are often thanked for their service by other members of the commuin the Middle East often are exposed to nity. Although he said that all veterans appreciate the verbal thank yous, he chemicals as well as open burn pits. said people can express their gratitude Since retiring from the Hoover in a lot of different ways. Fire Department, Thorin has been He suggests always showing proper recognized by the city of Hoover with respect to the flag, making sure your the Freedom Award this summer. children know and recite the pledge According to officials, the Freedom of allegiance and taking time to pay Award is presented each year to attention when the9:33 National Anthem “Hoover’s most outstanding public serBV OTMJ BOGO 10.375x6.25 FIN.qxp_Layout 1 11/11/15 AM Page 1 is being performed. ❖ vants who have dedicated themselves




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14 • Thursday, November 19, 2015


Sharing Food and Fellowship

Hungry for Change

Local Minister Focuses on Birmingham’s Needy

treating the table

Do’s and Don’ts for Thanskgiving Tablescapes

Daniel Cason collects enough food to feed more than 10,000 people the Tuesday before Thanksgiving and allow them to take groceries home.

By Kaitlin Candelaria When Daniel Cason and his wife, Gwen, set out to start their ministry 20 years ago, they were focused on glorifying God through their love of music. Cason grew up in Cleveland, Ohio, and said he began taking piano lessons at nine years old for 50 cents per lesson as part of an inner city outreach program. It was that experience that inspired him to cater to children in the Birmingham community. What began as piano lessons has grown into a ministry that touches thousands of people each year and feeds both the body and the soul. “It started really small,” Cason said. “We started with a Thanksgiving dinner with maybe 700 or 1,000 people and someone said, ‘Why don’t you talk to the mayor of Birmingham

and see if you can get the Boutwell?’ and now we’re in the Bill Harris Arena.” The Daniel Cason Ministries’ Thanksgiving dinner program, called “I Cared Enough,” feeds more than 10,000 people each year while also teaching people about God. “Our mission is to reach the five H’s – the hurting, the helpless, the hungry, the homeless and the hopeless – with the love and compassion of our savior,” Cason said. “These people come from everywhere. Some of them want to give up. We’re living in some very trying and evil times and this is an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of people.” Cason, who also serves as a pianist for Brairwood Presbyterian Church, works with churches and organizations all over town to gather food leading up to the sit-down dinner, See hungry, page 16

By Kaitlin Candelaria

1. Do plan ahead. Mitchell said that having family over for a large meal can be a stressful experience if you don’t plan ahead as much as possible. “Don’t try to do too much the day of,” he said. “Have all of your sides finished and ready

Turkey Time

Chef Joseph Mitchell Shares Thanksgiving Tips

Journal photo by Kaitlin Candelaria

Chef Joseph Mitchell knows a thing or two about preparing a big meal. The director and advisor for the Culinary and Hospitality Institute at Jefferson State has worked in restaurants, country clubs and hotels just to name a few. And of course, he’s cooked a holiday meal or two for his family. When it comes to Thanksgiving, Mitchell says he and his family often refer to a poem written by his late father, James C. Neel: “Thursday, last, of each November, Has a very special ring, And we’re certain to remember, Nature’s blessing that she brings. Kindness, love and brotherhood, Seem to flourish on this day; God’s great promise understood, In the most compelling way. Very certain it’s the season, Into which we wish to stray. Nothing in our rhyme or reason, Gladdens like Thanksgiving Day.” Mitchell shared some of his tips and tricks to ensuring a successful Thanksgiving dinner.

Marsha Baker may be a registered nurse, but her business these days is coming up roses. As the holidays approach, she has a few tips to help hosts and hostesses festively decorate their homes and tables for Thanksgiving. After giving birth to her children, Baker quit nursing professionally to stay home with the kids. “I started doing flowers through my church – Vestavia Hills Baptist Church. They have a big flower guild there and I learned from some of the women there,” Baker said. “They are all really talented. Some of them have their own businesses and do weddings and larger events.” After learning the trade, Baker went on to start her own flower arranging business out of her home. In 2005, she started Eden Designs. At times she had her own retail space – one in Vestavia and one in Pepper Place – but gave them up to spend more time with her kids before they left for college. “I haven’t had my own retail space since, but I’m working on opening one this year,” Baker said. Baker consults with clients about decorating their homes for the holidays, but when it comes to her own Thanksgiving, Baker said she leaves it to her mother-in-law, who hosts her family every year. “I’m always thankful when my family is all together,” she said. “I lost my mother in 2011 and my kids are off at school, so whenever I can get everyone together, that’s when I’m most happy.” Though she already is working hard on Christmas orders, she said she always gets a few orders for Thanksgiving tables. When they approach her, clients don’t typically know

Chef Joseph Mitchell is the Director and advisor for the Culinary and Hospitality Institute at Jeff State Community College.

above: Marsha Baker operates her flower arranging business at her home workshop in Vestavia Hills. below: Baker suggests that hosts bring the outdoors inside for their Thanksgiving tablescapes.

what they want, Baker said. All they know is they want something different than the run-ofthe-mill cornucopia and Indian corn. See table, page 16

to be heated.” He also advises having your table settings ready, buying fire logs for the fireplace ahead of time and purchasing wine and other items ahead of time. “‘Mise en place’ is a French culinary term used in professional kitchens referring to organization and preparation,” he said. He advises employing that same ideology when approaching your holiday meal. 2. Do involve others. Mitchell says an easy way to reduce stress is to get other family members involved. He said your menu should be fun but limited, meaning that you shouldn’t try to prepare 20 side dishes. Instead, focus on preparing the basics and letting others bring dishes to lessen the work. 3. Do keep it simple. “This is a great time to enjoy family and friends, not labor endlessly in the kitchen,” Mitchell said. “Stick with tradition. Everyone has a special recipe that a relative has passed down. Share those memories and print the recipes for others to share.” If you are looking to be adventurous on Thanksgiving Day, Mitchell recommends putting a different twist on a traditional dish, like deep-frying or smoking the turkey. 4. Do keep it safe. “Remember that poultry is a potentially hazardous food if not handled See turkey, page 16

Photos special to the Journal

Journal photo by Kaitlin Candelaria

By Emily Williams

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 15



Homewood’s church communities will gather Nov. 22 for their annual Thanksgiving meal at Dawson Memorial Baptist at 6 p.m. Churches participating include All Saints’ Episcopal, Union Missionary Baptist, Bethel AME, Trinity United Methodist, Dawson Memorial Baptist, Shades Valley Lutheran, Edgewood Presbyterian, Second Presbyterian, Friendship Baptist, Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic, Homewood Cumberland Presbyterian and Oakmont United Methodist. Combined choirs will perform “The Lord is My Light” as the call to worship, followed by the invocation prayer, performed by the Rev. Jermaine Richardson of Bethel AME. The Rev. Joe Genau of Edgewood Presbyterian will present words of fellowship, followed by the Rev. Jack Hinnen of Trinity West Oxmoor United Methodist with the offering emphasis. He will be joined by the Rev. Brian Erickson, also of Trinity, for the offering prayer. Readings also will be performed by the Rev. Robert Sellers of Friendship Baptist, the Rev. Derek Jacks of Homewood Cumberland Presbyterian, the Rev. Bill Boyd of Covenant Presbyterian and the Rev. Nic Seaborn of Raleigh Avenue Baptist followed by the benediction, performed by the Rev. Charles Youngson of All Saints’ Episcopal. This year’s offering will be donated to Greater Birmingham Ministries. Guests also are invited to bring in nonperishable food items for donation. ❖

Journal photo by Kaitlin Candelaria

Homewood Churches Gather for Annual Service

Bettina Boateng with WVTM 13 and Crys Martin, director of development and external relations for the Community Food Bank of Central Alabama at Brookwood Village, where they will host their annual can drive on Nov. 20.

Food Drive at Brookwood Village Benefits the Community Food Bank

WVTM 13 and the Birmingham Dance Theatre will host the 21st annual Can-a-Thon benefiting the Community Food Bank on Nov. 20 at Brookwood Village. Last year, the drive raised nearly 10,000 pounds of food for the Community Food Bank. This year, they hope to exceed that. Drop-off will take place at the main entrance of Brookwood Village between 5 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. WVTM 13 News team members will be on hand to provide assistance. All non-perishable food items will be accepted. The Community Food Bank has specifically requested canned chicken, peanut butter, jelly, cereal, oatmeal, grits, dried or canned beans, macaroni and cheese, pasta and canned vegetables. Shoppers who drop off donations also will receive vouchers for a complimentary coupon booklet featuring deals for different retailers and restaurants at Brookwood Village. For more information, visit ❖

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16 • Thursday, November 19, 2015


hungry, From page 14


holiday season.

which takes place the Tuesday before Thanksgiving. One such organization is Briarwood Christian School, which hosts a food drive each year to support the cause. “Most of these kids have everything but the kids I work with in the inner city have nothing,” Cason said. “They’re having the opportunity to touch people they may never see, but it’s so important. You can’t help everybody, but you can do something and these kids are helping to make a difference. “ Cason said that, while the focus for his ministry originally was music,


From page 14

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w No

en p O

Baker’s Advice for Holiday Decorating Do’s

The first thing on Baker’s list is the front door. She suggests hanging a festive wreath to welcome guests. “Burlap and cotton are good neutral materials that can easily transition into the Christmas season with the addition of a holiday ribbon,” she said. She also suggests bringing the outdoors inside by cutting branches with fall leaves, fruit or even berries from the yard. “Things like wild persimmons, beautyberry, cotoneaster, smilax, sumac, Japanese maple and oak leaf hydrangea foliage with or without the bloom are wonderful,” she said. “Be sure to soak the freshly cut branch overnight in water with flower preservative.” As for centerpieces for the table, Baker urges amateur tablescapers to think outside the usual cornucopia. Interesting vessels for arrangements usually can be found around the home. “Unusual containers like birch bark, carved out white or green pumpkins, old wooden boxes, galvanized tin, old china pieces, silver service, transfer wood or milk glass make for a vintage look,” Baker said. For decorators who love an amaryllis centerpiece for Christmas,


the needs he saw in the Birmingham community were too great to ignore. “My favorite part of this is the children I teach music to – that was the original ministry,” Cason said. “But what good is music to these kids who don’t have something to eat or shoes on their feet?” At the annual dinner, not only can people enjoy a hot meal, but Cason gathers enough donations so that each family can take home groceries afterward. He’s also expanded the dinner to include basic but essential things such as haircuts, clothes, school supplies and medical screenings. Representatives from nonprofits also will be on hand this year to assist people with things such as health insurance, housing and utilities.

Cason said his ultimate goal is to have a soup kitchen to feed the hungry and the homeless of downtown Birmingham every day instead of just during Thanksgiving. In the past, he was able to run one but said it shut down due to lack of funding. That, along with finding committed volunteers, are the biggest challenges to his ministry, he said. “A lot of times people think that these people want a handout, and I used to think the same thing,” Cason said. “But a lot of these are people who work every day and still can’t make it.” To donate to “I Cared Enough 2015,” you can reach Cason by calling 365-1800 or emailing him at ❖

Baker suggests placing the bare bulbs in the centerpiece among pumpkins for an easy transition into the holidays. “The bulbs will be blooming by Christmas if placed in a sunny window and the bare, earthy bulbs and roots add texture and an autumnal look,” she said. Lastly, layer linens and chargers under place settings to create texture and height variations. Baker suggests items such as burlap table runners, copper chargers, antique tablecloths and napkins with interesting rings.

a feeling of warmth,” she said. “Battery-powered tea lights, while convenient, just aren’t the same.” For her last two don’ts, Baker reminds hosts not to rush their guests to the table nor rush themselves to do the dishes. “Have light appetizers ready and enjoy everyone mingling in the kitchen with you,” she said. “It’s the heart of the home and where most family memories are made.” Once the guests make their way to the table, the host should sit back, relax and enjoy the company. “This is a precious family time that you can’t get back,” she said. If anything, she suggests wrapping up the leftovers. Her family usually has plastic containers ready to divvy up the food so each family has something to take home. For more information, visit the Eden Designs Facebook page, check out edendesignshome on Instagram or call 566-6526. ❖


As for Baker’s don’ts for Thanksgiving décor, her main rule is not to stress over perfection. “A little imperfection – mismatched place settings or oddly placed chairs – make for a more interesting table and lets your guests know you don’t have to be perfect and you don’t expect them to be either,” she said. Hosts also should not feel they have to spend a lot of money on flowers, either. For last-minute arrangements, she suggests filling cylinder vases with apples or pears. Another idea is filling long baskets with big, white pillar candles surrounded by gourds, acorns, moss or pinecones. “Throw in a few potted mums or succulents for a fresh look,” she said. “It’s always nice to have something live on the table.” Don’t forget candles – real candles – to add a touch of light to the table, Baker said. “The flicker of a candle adds

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turkey, From page 14

properly,” Mitchell said. “It is highly perishable and particularly susceptible to contamination by salmonella bacteria.” Mitchell said it is critical to store poultry at the correct temperature – between 32 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit – and to thaw it gradually in the refrigerator over the course of at least two days, with larger birds thawing for up to four. “Never cook poultry that is partially frozen,” Mitchell said. “Cook turkey and all poultry to an internal temperature of 165 degrees and juices should run clear.” Once you serve the turkey, Mitchell recommends storing it after two hours at room temperature. He also reminds everyone to wipe down surfaces after handling raw turkey. 5. Do remember the reason for the season. “Give great attention to the food with lots of love and care, but remember the most important thing is to spend time with family, friends and ones that you love,” he said. “Give thanks for all you have and consider ways to make others’ lives more rewarding.” ❖ For Recipes from Chef Mitchell, visit



Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 17

Thursday, december 3, 5-8

A’Mano, ANTIQUITIES, Avani Rupa Fine Jewelers, Beverly Ruff, Bromberg’s, Christine’s on Canterbury, Dande’Lion, Ex Voto Vintage, Harper’s Salon, Harrison’s, Judith Bright, Leaf & Petal, M. Lavender, Marella, Marguerite’s Conceits, Mtn Brook Chamber of Commerce, Mtn Brook Creamery, Mtn Brook Yoga, Mulberry Heights Antiques, Over the Mountain Dentistry, Paige Albright Orientals, Patina, Ritch’s Pharmacy, Ruby Ansley Interiors, Swoop, Table Matters, The Cook Store, The Lingerie Shoppe, Trocadero, Village Poodle, Village Sportswear

18 • Thursday, November 19, 2015




Group Raises Scholarship Funds for Children of Fallen Soldiers

Photos by Jennifer Hagler


he Johnny Mac Soldiers Fund hosted a sold out event Oct. 29 with 325 people attending, including military veterans and Birmingham corporate leaders. The gala was the debut event for the foundation, held at the new Grand Bohemian Hotel Mountain Brook. The event raised $525,000 that will be used to fund college scholarships for children of fallen military service men and women. The funds were raised through event sponsorships, a live auction and a Fund-a-Scholarship paddle raise during the gala.   “We’re so grateful for Birmingham’s generosity this evening,” said MaryEllen Picciuto, the fund’s president and event emcee. “$525,000 will fund a lot of college scholarships and our pledge to you is that we’ll begin with the military children in Alabama who most need our help in attaining their college degree.” Cadets from the UAB Army ROTC “Blazers” Battalion provided a color guard for the evening, presenting and retiring the colors at the beginning and end of the evening. Nick Saban, head football coach at the University of Alabama, served as keynote speaker for the event and was accompanied by his wife, Terry. During his speech, he touched on sev‘We’re so grateful eral themes, including football, family giving back. for Birmingham’s andThe fund is inspired by Colonel generosity this John “Johnny Mac” McHugh, who was killed in Afghanistan in 2010, evening.’ leaving behind five children. The MaryEllen Picciuto McHugh family attended the event, and McHugh’s daughter Kelly McHugh Stewart moderated the “Conversation with Coach Saban” portion of the evening program. Special guests included Tim Tebow, ESPN college football analyst, and Brig. Gen. John Thomson, commandant of cadets at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. ❖

From left: Steve Cannon, Nick Saban and Tim Tebow.

Connie and Bill Marefka.

James Hoyt and Tim King.

MaryEllen Picciuto and Brigadier Gen. John Thomson.

Cindy and Ron Rhodes, Mary Paiko and Jo Anne Fond.

Burton and Laura McDonald.

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 19



Photos special to the Journal

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Meet Our Receptionist!

From left: Murray Priester, Nancy Bromberg, Janie Williams, LaVonda Keel, Carrie Coons and Jane Christopher.

Cocktails at the Club Go-Gos Gather to Celebrate Fall

Mon-Fri 10-5

That’s just one way we’re different. 870-3589 Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 * Only clients at a time FAX: 6 205-824-1246 Date: * Home Sept. environment To: From:

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The Go-Gos Dance Club welcomed autumn with a cocktail buffet held at The Country Club of Birmingham. Go-Gos members and their dates gathered in the club’s living room, spilling onto the pool terrace at times to enjoy the fall weather. The early part of the evening was devoted to mingling and catching up, but a musical backdrop of soul and R&B hits, provided by Ms. Aretta and The Review Band, soon had attendees dancing. The club’s culinary staff kept guests’ energy levels primed for the revelry with a variety of hors d’oeuvres. ❖

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 the paper Monday.

Thank you for your prompt attention.


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Clockwise from above: Terry Lorant and Myra Leigh Gerontakis. Mary Joyce Lynch, Susan Williams, Suzanne Wald and Terry McBride. Joan and Troy Gambril with Susan and Ricky Tucker. Jim Priester, Leslie Moore and Ricky Bromberg.

To: From: Date:

Bayshore Over The Mountain Journal, 205-823-9646 ph., 205-824-1246, fax October

This is your ad proof from the over the mountain Journal for the november 5, 2015 issue. Please contact your sales representative as soon as possible to approve your ad or make changes. You may fax approval or changes to 824-1246.

SEXTON, full time for Mtn. Brook church. 40 hrs. w/Sunday work. Janitorial duties and light electrical/plumbing/maint. skills required. Call 871-7309 EXT. 3.

Please make sure all information is correct, including address and phone number!

please initial and fax back within 24 hours.

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 the paper Monday.

Thank you for your prompt attention.

20 • Thursday, November 19, 2015




Farm Market and Garden Center

Holiday Trimmings! Christmas Trees will be here the week of Thanksgiving! We Deliver & Set Up Trees!

y’s r The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 : 205-824-1246 2015

his is your AD PrOOF from the OvEr THE MOuNTAiN JOurNAl for the Nov. 19, 2015 issue. Please fax approval or changes to 824-1246.

Please make sure all information is correct, including address and phone number! Please initial and fax back within 24 hours.

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 the paper Monday.

Thank you for your prompt attention.

Into the Mystics

Annual Halloween Parade Draws Enthusiastic Crowd in Crestline The annual Mystics of Mountain Brook Halloween parade took place in Crestline Village on Oct. 31 at 4 p.m. This is the 12th anniversary of the Mardi Gras-style parade, which donates proceeds toward a fund for Mountain Brook’s beautification projects. People on floats tossed candy, beads and assorted goodies to families and friends in attendance. In keeping with tradition, the Mountain Brook High School cheerleaders and Dorians marched in the parade as well as the Birmingham Belles. Prizes in the form of gift cards were awarded to the best floats in the parade. The winning themed floats included Team Mountain Park, Star Wars; Team Shea, Halloween jams; Team St. Luke’s Church, Noah’s ark; Team Rice, spooky Halloween; Team Gladney, haunted ice cream; and Team Maldia, “Charlie Brown, Great Pumpkin.” ❖

Journal photos by Kaitlin Candelaria

824.0233 • 3351 Morgan Drive 402.2639 • Hwy 150 Hoover Mon-Sat 8-5 • Sun 12-5

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 21


Photos special to the Journal


Above: From left: Claude Ford Hardcastle, Janie Mayer and Daphne Dickinson. Right: Blaire Middleton and Rachel Waters.

Witch this Way Witches Bike Their Way Through the Streets of Homewood On Oct. 30, the witches of Homewood took flight throwing candy to children and raising money to fight lung cancer for the American Cancer Society. The group, founded three years ago by Homewood resident Janie Mayer following the death of her mother, finished their ride at Central Park, where they enjoyed food trucks, children’s activities and a silent auction. ❖

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To: From: Date:

Renee Over The Mountain Journal, 205-823-9646 ph., 205-824-1246, fax October

This is your ad proof from the over the mountain Journal for the november 5, 2015 issue. Please contact your sales representative as soon as possible to approve your ad or make changes. You may fax approval or changes to 824-1246.

Please make sure all information is correct, including address and phone number!

please initial and fax back within 24 hours.

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 the paper Monday.

Thank you for your prompt attention.

22 • Thursday, November 19, 2015


Tum Tum Tree


The 26th annual Tum Tum Tree Foundation Wine Auction took place Nov. 5 and 6. Funds raised from the auction benefit Magic Moments and other local children’s charities such as Mitchell’s Place, The Red Barn, KidOne Transport, Angel Pillowcases, the Alabama Center for Childhood Cancer and Blood Disorders, UAB’s Institute for the Arts in Medicine and Glenwood Autism and Behavioral Health Center. Thursday night’s silent auction took place at the Alys Stephens Center. Bottles of wine were available for bidding while guests enjoyed catering by Kathy G’s and wine tastings. Seven winemaker dinners followed at Bottega, Cafe Dupont, Daniel George, FoodBar, GianMarco’s, OvenBird and Satterfield’s. This year’s co-chairs, Fernando Frias of Frias Family Vineyards and Jasmine Hirsch of Hirsch Vineyards, also were on hand to greet and socialize with guests. Friday night’s formal event was hosted at The Club in Birmingham. Christopher Confero Design provided tablescapes with unique centerpieces, ambient lighting and a beautifully designed stage featuring a live piano player. Guests mingled and enjoyed champagne and hors d’oeuvres before settling in for a three-course dinner prepared by chefs at The Club along with Rob McDaniel of SpringHouse restaurant on Lake Martin. The food was paired with 2012 Hirsch Vineyard Estate Reserve pinot noir and 2013 Frias Family Vineyard Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon.

Jim and Jennifer McCormick.

Journal photos by Kaitlin Candelaria

Foundation’s Annual Wine Auction Raised Funds for Children’s Charities

From left: Auction honorees Janet and Lowell Herrero of Calistoga, California with Susan and Tom Lowder.

Peggy and Conrad Rafield.

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Courses included a salad featuring Joy Haven farm lettuces with goat cheese, persimmons and toasted walnuts; roasted Tanglewood Farms chicken with gumbo z’herbes and white rice; and three Southern cheese selections – Coppinger and Shakerag Blue from Tennessee, and Green Hill from Georgia – paired with pecan brittle, homemade muscadine preserves and banana bread. After dinner, guests began throwing up their paddles to bid on exclusive wine lots, trips and more while raising thousands of dollars for local children’s charities. The event usually takes place on Friday and Saturday night, but it was moved this year because of the Alabama-LSU. Instead, a tailgate party in Tuscaloosa was added to the schedule on Saturday afternoon. ❖

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Fall Get Together

Dance Club Honors New Members With Dinner Party The Ballerina Club honored 11 new members with a gala dinner party at Mountain Brook Club on Oct. 21. Recently elected to the dance club are Cheree Carlton, Nancy Coggin, Peggy Coleman, Susan Dobbs, Rebecca Drake, Ginny Halter, Sahra Coxe Lee, Betsy Middlebrooks, Carmen Morrow, Martha Reeves and Marquita Self. Lou Lanier was praised for coordinating the fall dinner and creating the table décor with assistance from Vicki Lukens. Round tables for six were centered with crystal Eiffel Tower vases holding sprigs of nandina with berries. The vases were circled by fall leaves accented with mercury votives. Lanier also played popular and classical tunes on the piano during the cocktail hour before guests gathered in the sunroom for dinner. The menu included a choice of scallops with crab meat or salmon, mixed veggies and chocolate roulage with raspberry sauce. Guests in attendance included Nancy and Tom Coggin, Evelyn and Steve Bradley, Ginny and Mike Halter, Virginia and John Golightly, Sahra and Roland Lee, Olivia Allison, Connie Bishop, Renee Blalock, Elizabeth and Merrill Compton, Carmen and Randall Morrow, Dot Crook, Martha and Mallory Reeves, Corinne Greer, Marquita and Roland Self, Fay Hart, Ann and Fletcher Harvey, Carolyn and Whit King, Anne 10:26:28 AM Tom Lamkin, Lou Lanier, and Mary Wills and Tom LeCroy, Jean and Curtis Liles, Vicki Lukens, Joanne and Art McConnell, Chris and Alston Ray, Nancy and Bill Stetler, Patsy and Bob Straka, Sue and Preston Trammel, Carolyn and Richard Waguespack, Nancy Walburn, Elouise Williams, and Nell and Sam Williams. Sue Parker Trammel is presi-

Photos special to the Journal

24 • Thursday, November 19, 2015

Above: From left: Marquita Self, Renee Blalock, Jean Liles and Patsy Straka. below: Preston and Sue Trammel and Bob Straka.

dent of the Ballerina Club. Mountain Brook Club hosts for the dinner party were Chris and Alston Ray. Events scheduled for next year are the winter coffee at the home of

Harriet Maloof in January and the Platinum Ball celebrating the club’s 70th anniversary at Birmingham Country Club in February. The ball will be chaired by Anne Lamkin. ❖



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Recognizing Legacy United Way Honors 50-Year Donors

Fall in Love Sale The items you loved and missed are now 30%-75% off!

Photos special to the Journal

Sale Begins November 23rd

Pre-sale Begins November 19th

Above: Nancy Collat Goedecke and Charles Collat. Below: Mrs. Glenn Ireland, Dr. Neal Berte, Ms. Mallie Ireland



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United Way of Central Alabama recently recognized supporters who have been giving for 50 years or more. The Legacy Gifts Committee, chaired by community volunteer Mallie Ireland, held a luncheon at The Club for these donors. The event was a reunion of friends who shared similar memories about their involvement with and dedication to United Way. A brief program was emceed by Ireland, who said the theme of the luncheon was “United Way: Past, Present and Future.” She introduced Charles Collat, CEO emeritus of Mayer Electric, who spoke about his 60 years of experiences supporting United Way as a volunteer and donor. He, along with his late wife, Patsy, went door to door soliciting donors during campaigns dating back to 1955. He also is a member of United Way’s Million Dollar Round Table. Collat then introduced his daughter, Nancy Collat Goedecke, CEO of Mayer Electric and the 2015 United Way campaign chair. She shared her experiences growing up in a family that believes in United Way. She said this belief inspires her leadership in this year’s campaign. Drew Langloh, president and CEO of United Way, talked about the future of United Way. He said it would continue to support effective agencies and work to meet future needs by collaborating with many community organizations to increase community outcomes in health, education and financial stability. Those in attendance included Neal Berte, Ben Branscomb, Joanna Gotlieb, Miriam Davies, Wayne Finley, Joe Gamble, Joyce Greathouse, Glenda and Elmer Harris, Mary Louise Hodges, Mamie Hymes, Dottie Krusen, Betty Loeb, Lynette McCary, Kathy and Mark Myatt, Peggy Ragland, Ann and Goodloe Rutland, Lynne Simmons, Nancy Smith, Pat Weil and Alice Williams. ❖

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 25



26 • Thursday, November 19, 2015

Attic Antiques Come See Us For Great Gifts! Tue.-Sat. 10-4:30 5620 Cahaba Valley Road




From left: Evelyn Ringler, Dot Renneker, Mary Jeane Sanspree, Una Ray Barnett and Karen Tucker.

Roman BRantley aRts & antiques Open House

Save the Dates Dec. 4, 10:30-7pm Dec. 5, 10:30-5pm

An Essential Event

Coronets Dance in Their ‘50s Best

The Coronets Dance Club held its fall black-tie dinner dance Oct. 16 at the Vestavia Hills Country Club. The ‘50s-themed dance was planned by Mary Jeane Sanspree, Una Ray Barnett, Evelyn Ringler, Dot Renneker and

Photo special to the Journal

2790 BM Montgomery St

Karen Tucker. Robert Logan assisted with the ‘50s décor, which included a juke box, 45-rpm records, poodle skirts and leather jackets. The tables were draped with pink and blue over black, as was in vogue in the 1950s. Ninety-two people danced to the sounds of The Essentials. New members in attendance included Cheryl Hardwick and Betty Womack. ❖

Linda Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 FAX: 205-824-1246 Nov. your ad proof from the over the mountain Journal for the nov. 19, 2015 tain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 issue. Please fax approval or changes to 824-1246. 1246

Photos special to the Journal

ease make sure all information is correct, including address and phone number! This is your AD PrOOF from the OvEr THE MOuNTAiN JOurNAl for the Nov. 19, 2015 issue. Please fax approval or changes to 824-1246.

please initial and fax back within 24 hours.

If we have not heard from you by 5 pm of the Friday before the press date, ase make sure allyour information correct, including address and phone number! ad will run as is is. We print the paper Monday.

Clockwise from above: Josephine Tortorice and Fran Ross Robertson. Molly Wolfe and Gina Green. Members of Girl Scout Troop 796 display headbands, bracelets, scarves and more during the annual arts and crafts show and sale.

Please and faxprompt back within 24 hours. Thank youinitial for your attention. 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 the paper Monday.

Small Saturday Thank you Business for your prompt attention.

November 28 - Come See Us!




For the Holidays

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Christmas shoppers found a treasure trove of unique gifts at Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church in Homewood Oct. 25, thanks to parishioners who displayed their creations during the 12th Annual Arts & Crafts Show and Sale. The church’s Family Life Center assembly hall was brimming with handmade items including ceramics, wood works, gloves, scarves, jewelry, crosses, paintings, drawings, baked goods, Christmas decorations, headbands and books. Complimentary doughnuts and fresh fruit were available to guests as they shopped. The free, five-hour event was organized by Fran Ross Robertson, who said she was inspired by the creativity of others. Exhibitors donated a portion of their proceeds to the parish. ❖

Weddings & Engagements

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 27

The bride is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Steven George McKinney of Birmingham. She is the granddaughter of Mr. and Mrs. Jerrel Walker of Memphis and Mr. George Orlan McKinney and the late Mrs. McKinney of Zion, Illinois. The groom is the son of Mr. and Mrs. William Hughes Satterfield of Birmingham. He is the grandson of the late Dr. and Mrs. Albert Huey Green of Birmingham and the late Mr. and Mrs. William Felix Satterfield of Owensboro, Kentucky. Given in marriage by her father, the bride wore a strapless ivory satin ball gown with a jeweled waistband and a chapel-length train and veil. She was attended by her sisters, Evelyn McKinney Hill and Stephanie McKinney Newton of Nashville, Tennessee, as matrons of honor and Suzanna Rose McKinney of Birmingham as maid of honor. Bridesmaids were Caroline Satterfield McClain, sister of the groom, of New York City; Lisa Jane Rogers of Brisbane, Australia; Samantha Erin

Pieper of Prattville; Suzanne Adkins Brodner of Madison, Mississippi; Mary Lauren Bobango of Memphis; and Lauralei Suzanne Palmer of Kenosha, Wisconsin. The flower girl was Rushton Grace Robinson of Birmingham. The father of the groom was the best man. Groomsmen were Christopher Kevin Torgerson, Alexander Volentine Green, Andrew MacKenzie Green, Robert Louis Robinson III, all of Birmingham; James Mac Hobgood of Clayton, North Carolina; Jesse Lee Sexton of Decatur; and Jason Warren McClain, brother-in-law of the groom, of New York City. The ring bearers were Steven and Bradley Palmer of Kenosha, Wisconsin. Scripture readers were Emily Caldwell Perkins of Birmingham and John Allen Bobango of Memphis. Soloist was Ryan Green, sister-in-law of the groom. After a honeymoon trip to Cabo San Lucas, the couple live in Birmingham.

Dowell of Birmingham. The groom is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Thomas Hiatt of Trussville. Given in marriage by her father, the bride wore a wedding gown designed by Heidi Elnora. The dress featured a strapless, sweetheart, ruched wrapped bodice, a natural waist and a flowing organza skirt. She chose a corded Alencon lace overlay for the skirt. A dainty rhinestone belt with floral motifs accentuated her waist and she completed her look with an heirloom piece, her mother’s veil. She also wore her mother’s garter, which was made by her fraternal great grandmother. Her “gardeninspired” bouquet was a gathering of jewel roses, ranunculus, veronica, star of Bethlehem, calcynia and astrantia with assorted greenery clipped form a local Birmingham garden to complete the seasonality and texture to the arrangement. The bride was attended by her sister, Clare Crawford Dowell of Birmingham, as maid of honor. Bridesmaids were Christel Delores

Barnett, Chelsea Brooke Cagle, Andrea Nicole David, Sara Meaghan Feick and Amanda Spivey Pittman, all of Birmingham; Logan McKensie Elder of Atlanta; Lindsey Hitt Fussell of Tampa, Florida; Mandy Heard Powell of Memphis, Tennessee; Emily Hood Seeba of Marietta, Georgia; and Kathryn Norton Wren of Columbia, Maryland. The groom’s nieces, Hayden Kinley Hiatt, Summer Michelle Hiatt and McKenzie Elizabeth Hiatt of Hayden were the flower girls. The father of the groom served as best man. Groomsmen were Thomas Reed Avant Jr., Timothy David Hamilton, Alexander Williamson Jones III, Clay Morgan Pittman and Thomas Logan Pittman, all of Birmingham; John Patrick Hiatt, brother of the groom, and William David Hamilton, both of Trussville; as well as Matthew Scott Hiatt, brother of the groom, of Hayden. After a honeymoon trip to Napa Valley, California and San Francisco, the couple live in Birmingham.

embroidered details. Her illusion back was complemented with crystal and filigree, and her fit-to-flare skirt flowed into a chapel-length train. She carried a bouquet of white peonies with a touch of pink. Ashley Logan Blomeyer of Birmingham and Whitney Logan Hubbard of Tuscaloosa, sisters of the bride, were matrons of honor. Rollins Elizabeth Dessoffy of New York City, niece of the groom, was the flower girl.    The groom’s father was the best man. Groomsmen were the groom’s brothers, Jonathan Walters Blakeney of Nashville, Tennessee, and William David Blakeney Jr. of Tuscaloosa.  Ushers were Lewis Bryant Foster of Tuscaloosa, Jon Michael Parsons of Birmingham, Harold Gregory Pearson Jr. and Grady Roland Pugh III, both of Tuscaloosa. The children of the wedding were Allen Whitaker Blomeyer, Owen Gates Blomeyer, Scott Hutchins Blomeyer and Thomas Logan Blomeyer, nephews of the bride, of Birmingham; Miller McRee Dessoffy and William Chilson Dessoffy, nephews of the groom, of New York City. Rob Ingram of Rob and Wynter of Birmingham was the photographer. Nellie Butler and Louise McClure of Mariée Ami were the wedding planners. Kathy Miller Flowers of Birmingham provided white hydrangea garlands on the fireplace and in the barn and pavilion. She covered four chandeliers with smilax garlands. The central chandelier featured white roses, white hydrangeas, pink tulips and touches of greenery.  After a honeymoon trip to Europe, the couple live in Tuscaloosa.

lowed the ceremony. The bride is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. James A. Kee Jr. of Birmingham. The groom is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Al Rabiee of Birmingham. Given in marriage by her father, the bride wore a gown designed by Helen Rose of MGM Studios, Hollywood, California. The gown, inspired by the 1950’s Grace Kelly collection, was of duchess satin with Old World Monaco lace. The bride chose to add duchess satin buttons to the back of the gown from the top to the foot of the sweeping train. She wore a Grace Kelly veil with a pearl head piece. The bride carried a bouquet of seastar fern, eucalyptus, blue green antique hydrangea with woven-in stems of white peonies, garden roses, ranunculus, lisianthus, queen Ann’s lace and scabiosa, accented with sprigs of seeded eucalyptus. The bridesmaids’ bouquets were a seastar

fern base and antique blue and green hydrangea stems with accents of blueberries and seeded eucalyptus greenery. The flower girls wore halos with a base of Italian ruscus with antique blue green hydrangea accents. The bride was attended by her sister, Rebecca Grace Kee, as maid of honor. Bridesmaids were the groom’s sisters, Laudan Henderson and Shaydah Rabiee, and the groom’s sister-in-law, Brittany Rabiee. Rebecca Henderson and Kate Henderson were the flower girls. The groom’s brother, Matthew Rabiee, served as the best man. Groomsmen were the groom’s brother-in-law, Trey Henderson, the groom’s cousin, David Iradji, and Ryan Swindle. Ben Henderson was a junior groomsman. Ring bearers were Riley Crowe and Luke Henderson. After a honeymoon trip to Costa Rica, the couple live in Birmingham.



Meridith Elise McKinney and William Hughes Satterfield Jr. were married Nov. 15, 2014, at Highlands United Methodist Church. The midafternoon ceremony was officiated by the Rev. Dr. Corbett Heimburger and the Rev. Mikah Hudson. A reception at the Country Club of Birmingham followed the wedding. 


Logan Elizabeth Dowell and Joseph Lawrence Hiatt were married Sept. 12 at First United Methodist Church in Birmingham. The Rev. Joey Elmore and Pastor James “Butch” Williams officiated at the ceremony. The bride is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. William Andrew Balcke


Sarah Chase Kee and Amir Anthony Rabiee were married May 30 at the Lodge at Cocktail Slough on Lake Martin. The 6 p.m. ceremony was officiated by the Rev. Jonathan Kiel and the Rev. Kevin Corley. An outdoor reception at the Lodge fol-


Blakely Taylor Logan and George Russell Blakeney were married June 13 in the wedding garden at The Farm at Old Edward’s Inn in Highlands, North Carolina. The Rev. Thomas Richard Caradine officiated the 6 p.m. ceremony. The bride is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Dennis Allen Logan of Birmingham. She is the granddaughter of the late Col. and Mrs. Homer Thomas Montgomery of Diamondhead, Mississippi, and the late Col. and Mrs. Edward O’Neal Logan of Birmingham. The groom is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Johnson Russell Gibson III of Tuscaloosa and Mr. William David Blakeney of Tuscaloosa. He is the grandson of Mrs. James Lucien Hinton of Tuscaloosa and the late Mr. James Lucien Hinton, as well as Dr. and Mrs. Adolph Linden Blakeney of Tuscaloosa and the late Mrs. Sarah Sullivan Blakeney.  Given in marriage by her father, the bride wore a Lela Rose gown made of silk Radzmir with hand-


Mr. and Mrs. Paul Dennis Reynolds of Vestavia Hills announce the engagement of their daughter, Chelsea Elizabeth, to Christopher Joseph Nicholson, son of Dr. and Mrs. Joseph Edward Nicholson of Vestavia Hills. The bride-elect is the granddaughter of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Wayne Reynolds and the late Mr. and Mrs. Charlie William Seat, all of Pontotoc, Mississippi.

Miss Reynolds is a graduate of Samford University, where she received a bachelor’s degree in musical theater and was a member of Alpha Omicron Pi sorority and Alpha Psi Omega honor society. She currently is in the master of fine arts in acting program at the University of Alabama. Miss Reynolds is a graduate teaching assistant at the University of Alabama. The prospective groom is the grandson of Mr. George Nomy Mickwee and the late Mrs. Lucia Kenhan Mickwee of Vestavia Hills and Mrs. Alice Marie Nicholson and the late Mr. Edward Douglas Nicholson of Dallas. Mr. Nicholson is a graduate of the University of Virginia, where he received a bachelor’s degree in history and was a member of Sigma Phi Society. He received his juris doctor from the University of Alabama. Mr. Nicholson is a partner at Jones & Hawley, P.C. The wedding is planned for Dec. 12. After a honeymoon trip to Kauai, Hawaii, the couple will live in Birmingham.

To have our wedding & engagement forms sent to you, call 823-9646.

over the mountain journal • toy story • Thursday, November 19, 2015 • page 28

The Play’s the Thing Over the Mountain Toy Stores Have Hot Stuff for the Holidays story by Donna Cornelius s Photos by Maury Wald

Some toys make kids go bonkers when they open them – and then gather dust once the “new” has worn off. s Three Over the Mountain stores make it their business to offer toys that will be fun for days to come. There’s probably not a child in the OTM area who can’t think of at least one gift that came from Homewood Toy and Hobby, Smith’s Variety Toy and Gift Shoppe and Snoozy’s Kids. The toy gurus at each of these stores have their own memories about favorite Christmas toys. “One year, my aunt gave me a cardboard submarine,” said George Jones, owner of Snoozy’s Kids in Crestline Village. “I remember having the best time putting it together in the yard. It had places you could look out, flap doors, and was grayblue like a real sub. I didn’t know things like that existed. “My aunt – Patricia Bird, who lives in Calera – always gave the best gifts.” Homewood Toy and Hobby owner Tricia McCain and staff members Julie Marix and Joanne Dickey had no trouble recalling stand-out presents. McCain said she still has the doll she got one year. “I got the 14-inch Madame Alexander Alice in Wonderland, and my sister got Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm,” she said. “I got in trouble for putting makeup on my doll and taking her to the pool. She still has cloudy eyes today – she looks like Zombie Alice.” Marix said her favorite gift had her literally jumping up and down. “It was my trampoline,” Marix said. “I was into gymnastics, so I was in hog heaven.” A toy typically given to boys won Dickey’s heart, she said. “I got my first Erector set when I was eight,” she said. “I thought it was cool that my mom chose to give me that. I had the best time figuring it out.” Steve Sudduth, Smith’s Variety manager, didn’t have to think long to come up with the toy that tops his list. “It was the Six Million Dollar Man doll,” he said “I had him about three days before his foot fell off, so he was not so bionic. I played with him anyway. I was a big fan of Lee Majors and the show.” Sudduth has been busier than any North Pole elf this holiday season. Smith’s Variety just moved into its new store in Crestline Village.

hot toys: Tricia McCain shows off SpinAgain, George Jones demonstrates DRFT and Jim Glazner with Kooba.

So what’s new and cool in the toy department this year? Jones said the DRFT is “the hottest new thing.” “It’s like an electric Segway without the T-stand,” Jones said. “You control it by leaning. It comes in silver, black, gold, camo, red and white. It carries about 50 to 250 pounds.” Supplies are limited; Jones said when his first DRFT order arrived several weeks ago, it sold out in about a day and a half. The vehicles are $499.99 and recommended for ages 9 and up. All three stores have Light Stax. These light-up building blocks snap together to make shapes. An especially neat idea: Children can use them to create their own nightlights. $19.99, $39.99 and $99.99, ages 3 and up. With the new James Bond movie Homewood Toy and Hobby is at 2830 18th St. S. in downtown Homewood. For more information, call 879-3986 or visit or the store’s Facebook page. Smith’s Variety is at 45 Church St. in Mountain Brook’s

Crestline Village. For more information, call 871-0841 or visit the store’s Facebook page.

Snoozy’s Kids is at 228 Country Club Park in Mountain

Brook’s Crestline Village. For more information, call 871-2662 or visit the store’s Facebook page.

coming up, it’s a good time to develop your spy skillset. “Think about those cool movies where the characters sneak into a museum and have to dodge the crisscrossed security laser lights,” Marix said. Chrono Bomb lets you have the same experience. You set up a “laser” field with strings and then challenge your friends to cross it and defuse the bomb before time runs out. At all three stores. $38.99, ages 7 and up. It’s fun to mold Crazy Aaron’s Thinking Putty, which doesn’t dry out and won’t harbor germs. Some of the putty is magnetic, and some changes colors. It comes in kits, too. Maybe Aaron isn’t so crazy after all. At all three stores. From $2.99 to $14.99, for all ages. Thomas the Tank Engine isn’t a new kid on the block. But now he has a new playground: the Thomas Adventure Tower. It’s tall, not wide, so it doesn’t take up as much space as some play boards. There are no screws involved – and it folds up. At Snoozy’s Kids. $179.99, ages 3 and up. Jambanz are slap-bands that use Bluetooth technology so you can play audio from iPads, iPhones and other devices if you’re playing outside, biking or jogging. They’re safer than headphones because you can hear what’s going on around you. They come in different colors, too. At all three stores. $29.99, ages 6 and up

Game for Anything

Bellz! is a new game for all ages. Players use a magnetic wand to pick up the bells in the color they’ve been assigned. The first to retrieve all of his or her colors wins. If you pick up the wrong color – let’s just say, try not to do that. At all three stores. $19.99, ages 3 and up. In Bugs in the Kitchen, a pesky little insect scuttles around the board and you try to trap it, just like at home, assuming the bug-spray man hasn’t visited recently. At Homewood Toy and Hobby and Smith’s Variety. $29.99, ages 5 and up. Yeti in My Spaghetti is a creative innovation on the old

pickup sticks game. Homewood Toy and Hobby and Smith’s Variety. $19.99, ages 4 and up. From the makers of the matching game Spot It!, Super Genius learning games teach math skills and spelling. Instead of matching pictures, you’ll see, for example, 4 + 5 on one card and have to match it to 9. (We probably didn’t need to tell you that. But if we did, you definitely need this game.) At Smith’s Variety. $12.99, ages 6 and up. There’s a new junior version of the popular 5 Second Rule game, which asks players to name items in a category in – you guessed it, five seconds. At Homewood Toy and Hobby. The junior version is $19.99; the regular version is $24.99.

The Sporting Life

Future quarterbacks and wide receivers will love the Passback football. This funny-looking football has a flat end so you can throw it against a wall and then catch your own pass. At Homewood Toy

and Hobby and Snoozy’s Kids. $24.99, ages 8 and up. Slammo is a volleyball-style game that’s a blast for teens as well as for younger children. Players slam balls into a trampoline, and teams have to volley back and forth until someone can’t return the ball to the net. It folds up to take to the park, the beach or tailgate parties. At Homewood Toy and Hobby. $49.99, ages 8 and up. A mom and her sons in Charlotte, North Carolina, developed Two Bros Bows, a set that comes with a bow and two soft-tipped arrows. It comes in designs for both boys and girls. Extra arrows are available for purchase. At Homewood Toy and Hobby. $28.99, ages 6 and up. Mount the Slackers Flying Saucer Swing Seat on a swing set or sturdy tree branch. It has LED lights and is plastic, so it holds up well outside. At Snoozy’s Kids and Smith’s Variety. $34.99, ages 3 to 8-plus. Kooba sets have two sticks that you use to sling off a disk that magnetizes to a target – if your aim is true. You can play it alone or with a buddy. At Smith’s Variety and Homewood Toy and Hobby. $70, ages 11 and up. The Nebula Cruiser Quadricopter Aircraft isn’t a drone but flies and looks like one. It has

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 29

toy story


LED lights and sophisticated controls. At Snoozy’s Kids. $129.99, ages 10 and up. If you’re looking for a more laidback sports-themed gift, try Campus Legends figurines and stadium sets. You use snap-together blocks to make a miniature Julio Jones, Ben Tate and other former Alabama and Auburn stars now in the NFL. There also are stadium sets and, for Mountain Brook fans, Sparty from Michigan State University. At Smith’s Variety. $11.99 and up, ages 6 and up.

Classics Revisited

A Barbie-less Christmas? Unthinkable. The newest addition to the superstar doll’s entourage is the Barbie Saddle ’n Ride Horse. You turn on the horse, Barbie mounts it by herself, and the two ride off into the sunset (or the living room). Barbie wisely has a riding hat, too. At Snoozy’s Kids and Smith’s Variety. $59.99, ages 3 and up. Modern Barbie also comes dressed for success and not just for fashion – as a ballerina, veterinarian, eye doctor and scientist. At all three stores. $10.99 and up, ages 3 and up. Pull-toy dogs have been around nearly as long as actual dogs. But the Crazy Rocky doggie-on-a-string is especially appealing. His tail wags, and he’s sporting a tartan blanket. At Snoozy’s Kids and Homewood Toy and Hobby. $34.99, ages 1 and up. The Steep and Serve Tea Set from Melissa and Doug is so cute moms won’t mind if it’s left out on the coffee table. While many sets come in standard pink and purple, the pieces in this European-look set are white with red and blue trim. It has wooden teabags and biscuits, too. At Homewood Toy and Hobby. $29.99, ages 3 and up. Kids who love Legos are always excited to get the newest kits. This year, you’ll find new themes such as super heroes, fairy tale elves and – do we need to say it? – Star Wars. At Snoozy’s Kids and Homewood Toy and Hobby. $4.99 and up. Who doesn’t like a good magic show on Christmas night? Marvin’s iMagic lets young David Copperfields use modern hocus-pocus. “We sell tons of magic sets,” Marix said. “This one uses a smart device, which almost every child has. You download an app for free and then can interact with it to learn cool tricks.” At Homewood Toy and Hobby. $39.99, ages 8 and up. Most little girls love giving themselves and their friends the mani-pedi treatment. Kits from MoYou Nails have polish and a stamper to stamp on cool designs. The decorations are easy to remove, too. At Smith’s Variety and Homewood Toy and Hobby. $24.99 to $34.99, ages 6 and up.

Age Appropriate

For Little Folks…

SwingEase is a component for seat swings that holds younger

children in place. It clips on to the swing’s chains and is easy to take to the tot lot as well as to use in your backyard. At Snoozy’s Kids. $29.99, ages 6-36 months. Moms and dads with infants will appreciate this keepsake gift: footprint/handprint kits with distressed canvases and inkpads. At Snoozy’s Kids. $29.99. SpinAgain is “one of our favorite toys,” Marix said. “It’s for little ones, but we’ve seen 4-year-olds and 5-year-olds playing with our display. It’s a new twist on a stacking toy.” Brightly colored wheels of different shapes spiral down the pole on their own. At Homewood Toy and Hobby. $29.99, ages 1 year and up. Play n’ Trace is a new trace board that lets you “write” with your fingernails or a stylus. You just sit it on top of what you want to trace. It has a handle so is great for travel. At Smith’s Variety and Homewood Toy and Hobby. $34.99, ages 3 and up. …and Older Kids

Looking for something for tweens, teens and maybe their parents, too? Adult coloring books have intricate designs to color. You can get books with themes such as modern art, fab flowers, the works of artists such as Degas, and tessellation. Special crayons and markers are available, too. At Smith’s Variety and Homewood Toy and Hobby. The books are $5.99 and up. Supplies are $8-$25. Snuggle stylishly on cold winter nights with Trellis Throws. These pretty blankets are oversized and super-soft. At Snoozy’s Kids, where you can get in-store monogramming with a name or initials. $24.50. Drones are high on big boys’ lists, and Homewood Toy and Hobby has many models to choose from, with features such as pro-grade cameras, autopilot and GPS. Some are designed for racing, others for chasing your buddies around. Top-of-theline models meant for adults include the Chroma model at $1,049.99 and $1,149.99 and the DJI Phantom at $799.99 and $1,259.99. Other models are available, too.

Read All About It

Give young readers some local flavor for Christmas. St. Nick (no, not Coach Saban) visits the South in “Santa Is Coming to Birmingham” and “Santa Is Coming to Alabama.” At Snoozy’s Kids and Homewood Toy and Hobby. $9.99. Also available is “Santa’s Sleigh Is on Its Way to Alabama.” At all three stores. $12.99. Jones said a customer recommended “The Rabbit Who Wants to Fall Asleep.” “It’s a best seller in Europe and really does help your child fall asleep,” he said. The book has instructions on how to modulate your voice and when to yawn so you’ll get the best results. At Snoozy’s Kids. $15.99. “The Day the Crayons Came Home” follows the wildly popular “The Day the Crayons Quit.” This book’s colorful characters include Maroon, Turquoise and Pea Green. At Snoozy’s Kids. $18.99.

Kit and Caboodle

The Just Add Milk science and

art kits use something that’s likely in everybody’s fridge to conduct experiments and create designs. At Homewood Toy and Hobby. $14.99. Color a Cape is a reversible plastic cape that’s a solid color on one side. On the other side, you can use markers to color in designs that have fairy, princess, knight and pirate motifs. You can get aprons, too. At Homewood Toy and Hobby. $20.99, ages 4 and up.

ers to choose from, including My First Science Kits for little ones. At Smith’s Variety and Homewood Toy and Hobby. $19.99. Kids can decorate the enchanting Dreamland Fairy House; fairies can then visit and bring sweet dreams with them. In case these magical creatures fail to show, fairy dolls are available, too. At Homewood Toy and Hobby and Smith’s Variety. $24.99 for the houses and $14.99 for the dolls, ages 4 and up. Need a teacher’s present that’s not a gift card or scented soap? Use holiday-themed Plush Craft kits to decorate soft 3-D ornaments. At Homewood Toy and Hobby and Smith’s Variety. $7.99.

Stuff Those Stockings

Use large, chunky pegs to make designs matching the genderneutral cards in Fantacolor Junior. This fun game teaches color matching, and it’s handy to take in the car when you’re going to grandma’s house for Christmas. At Homewood Toy and Hobby. $29.99, ages 2 and up. In days of yore, kits like Aquabeads required tediously ironing the beads so they’d melt together into a design. This modern version lets you make the design and simply spray it with water to set it. Will wonders never cease! At Snoozy’s Kids and Homewood Toy and Hobby. $14.99 and up, ages 6 and up. The Yarn Tree makes a cute and crafty addition to any little girl’s room. Wrap colored strands of yarn around the bendable tree-shaped stand to hold jewelry. At Homewood Toy and Hobby. $34.99, ages 8 and up. Spice Box craft kits are neatly packaged sets with clay, pipe cleaners and watercolor paints so kids of almost all ages can make crafty creations. Sudduth, at Smith’s, said the rock painting set is extremely popular, and there’s a paintable tea set, too. At Smith’s Variety and Homewood Toy and Hobby. $10-$30. Magna-Tiles are 3-D magnetic building tiles that come in clear colors to let you build pyramids, cubes and other geometric shapes. At Smith’s Variety and Homewood Toy and Hobby. $53.99, $79.99 and $119.99, ages 3 and up. Magformers kits are great creative toys. Each piece has a magnet at every angle. You can build 2-D and 3-D structures. At all three stores. $13.99 and up, ages 3 and up. Sudduth said he’s “really digging” Scientific Explorer kits, designed for a wide range of ages and interests. The Tasty Science kits let you make your own candy, for example, and there are lots of oth-

Make Star Wars and Transformers characters, airplanes and other miniature models with Fascinations Metal Earth kits. Older kids will enjoy putting them together and then showing them off on a solar-powered display stand. Dads seem to like them, too. At Homewood Toy and Hobby and Smith’s Variety. Model kits are $6.99 and up. The display stand is $9.99. Mini Rubik’s Cubes, Perplexus and Duncan Yo-Yos make great gifts for boys and girls – perfect when you need to give similar, don’t-costan-arm-and-a-leg gifts to classmates or friends. At Homewood Toy and Hobby and Smith’s Variety. Under $10. Pop something sweet into a stocking with hot chocolate spoons. Use them to stir hot milk to add chocolate and chocolate-peppermint flavors. At Snoozy’s Kids. $3.99. Personalize the Smoobee hairbrush by decorating it yourself. It has big bristles that are easy on little girls’ curls. At Smith’s Variety. $19.99 Flickerz stretch shoelaces don’t come untied as easily as their regular cousins and come in children’s and adults’ size. At Smith’s Variety. $9.99 for three sets of strings. Super Dough clay animal figures come in containers that hold all the colors of clay you need to make monkeys and other critters. You can store the clay to use over and over or air-dry your creations to harden and save them. At Homewood Toy and Hobby. $3.99. Poppy Drops are temporary tattoo “jewelry” that little girls can pop on for pretend earrings, necklaces and bracelets. Poppy Drops use vegetable dyes so they’re not irritating to the skin. At Homewood Toy and Hobby. $7.99 and $9.99. Jazz up your bike – and make it more visible in the dark – by twirling bike lights around your vehicle’s spokes or post. At Smith’s Variety and Homewood Toy and Hobby. $9.99 to $19.99. ❖

over the mountain journal • Thursday, November 19, 2015 • page 30 holiday gift guide

perfect presents


Pottery Snowman also available in Santa and Christmas Tree, $119. Andy’s, Vestavia, 824-0233 and Hoover, 402-2639.

t’s time once again to get serious and begin your search for the perfect gift for everyone on your list. eGood news is we’ve done some of the heavy lifting for you again this year with our Annual Holiday Gift Guide! Even better news, these great gift ideas are found close to home at Over the Mountain area stores. Many neighborhood merchants are happy to offer suggestions for even the hardest of your hard-to-please relatives and friends. eWe’ve found a wide variety of choices, from splurges to stocking stuffers and everything in between. If you’re ready to get cracking on your holiday shopping, check out our guide before you hit the streets with debit card in hand. e

Faux fur Nathalie vest by Parkhurst, $117. a.k.a. Girl Stuff, 802-7735.

The Vulcan glass-blown ornament, $24.99. Vulcan Park and Museum Gift Shop, 933-1409.

Holiday Pillows, $20-$48. Crestline Pharmacy Christmas Shop, 871-0317.

Miniature gilded nativity, $6. Leaf & Petal, Botanical Gardens, 877-3030, Mountain Brook, 871-3832 and The Summit, 967-3232.

19th and 20th century bronzes, start at $195. Tricia’s Treasures, 871-9779.

Bed Head PJs, 2 piece pajamas, $138. The Lingerie Shop, 871-8994.

Hand-knitted dog ornaments, $25. Christopher Glenn, 870-1236.

“Industrial strength” fire pits available in a variety of sizes, start at $325. Frontera, 320-1900.

Byers Choice Storybook Santa, limited edition, $190. The Holiday Shop, 988-4810.

Bracksih Feather Bow Ties. Handmade in South Carolina, each feather is unique. Starting at $165. Bromberg’s Mountain Brook Village, 871-3276 and The Summit, 969-1776.

Knitted, fingerless gloves from Paris, $36. Betsy Prince, 871-1965.

Moscow Mule Mug, $20. Table Matters, 879-0125.

A cleaner and healthier home. Ten percent off for OTMJ readers. The Maids, 871-9338.

When you purchase a gift card totaling $100 or more and present our ad in this publication, you’ll receive a $20 gift card just for you! Brookwood Village, 871-0406.

Gold Diamond Bar Necklace. Levy’s Fine Jewelry, 251-3381.

Corkcicle Canteen, Vinnebago Edition 25 oz, $36. Keeps beverages cold for 25 hours and hot for 12 hours. Kellum and Company, 874-9530.

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 31

Holiday gift guide


Cashmere gloves, one size, 2 styles, 4 different colors, $75. Marguerite’s Conceipts, 879-2730.

Assorted men’s lounge pants, $65. Vineyard Vines at The Summit, 970-9758.

Pursecase as seen on “Shark Tank.” This protective smartphone case exclusively fashioned with a pocket to carry cash, ID and credit cards starts at $27.50. Christines on Canterbury, 871-8297.

Hamdmade Susan Gordon pottery nativity, $65. Chicadees, 969-3138.

Christmas cakes from Savage’s start at $29.95. Savage’s Bakery, 871-4901.

Alabama and Auburn Dammit Dolls, $12.95. Rosenberger’s Birmingham Trunk, 870-0971.

Thistle & Bee silver necklace, $225. Wallace-Burke Fine Jewelry and Collectibles, 874-1044.

Hand-crafted leather camels from Turkey, $20-$95. Paige Albright Orientals, 877-3232.


Perfecting the

Kamado Joe Ceramic Grill, the BigJoe 24,” $1,599.99. Little Hardware, 871-4616.

Vintage Christmas Balls, $2.50, and up. Hanna Antiques, 323-6036.

Wolf Gourmet Blender, $499. AllSouth Appliance, 942-0408.

WALLACE -BURKE Hand made semi-precious stone necklaces, hand knotted, some on rosaries and some on gold chains, $44-$62. Second Hand Rose, Cahaba Heights, 970-7997, Hoover, 987-7027.

Fine Jewelry & Collectibles

Special order for Christmas flour sack 1811|29th Ave. South I Downtown Homewood, AL 35209 | 205.874.1044 | Downtown Homewood, AL 35209 dish towel with name and date, $22.1811 29th Ave. South 205.874.1044 I The Cook Store, 879-5277. 10% of all sales Dec. 2nD - Dec. 4th will be DonateD to the exceptional founDation.

32 • Thursday, November 19, 2015

Holiday gift guide

Jon Richard Gold Star Struck Bowl, 11.5 x 14, holiday sale price, $351. Issis & Sons Furniture Gallery Vestavia, 874-9586 and Pelham, 620-6926.

Sapphire, Emerald, Aquamarine, Pink Tourmaline, Blue Zircon, and Garnet Natural Gemstone Rings. $289 - $379. Jewels by Rose 979-5611.


Eyeglasses by THEO-Belgium “explode the idea of what is possible”. $570, $520 and $560. iiis. an optical shop, 930-9394.

Chalkboard Christmas ornaments in various styles, $11-$25. Roots, located in Aldridge Gardens, 682-8019.

Jen Boaz necklaces all have an adjustable soft grey leather for the perfect fit. $107. Monkee’s of Mountain Brook, 783-1240.

Hand painted wine glasses, $24 each. Mulberry Heights Antiques, 870-1300.



Christmas Ever


Helping Those that are Homeless for the Holidays

Neo Cutis Bio-Essentials starter kit contains face cleanser, Lumiere eye cream, Journee tinted day balm with SPF30 and Bio-Cream night moisturizer, $178. Receive a free gift with the purchase of the starter kit. Heights Dermatology & Aesthetics, 591-2169.

Individually themed, handcrafted, one of a kind Miniature Gardens sold exclusively at Sprout Flower Market by local Artist Charlotte Sipple. Sprout Flower Market, 533-9006

Tree of Life painting, $80.

Just $60 can provide food, shelter & support for a mom and two kids for a day.

Please Give Today (205) 323-5878 PO Box 10472 • Birmingham, AL 35202

Earthborn mugs, ergonomically easy to handle, large mugs, $40. Earthborn Studios, Inc. 702-7055.

All-in-one hanging cosmetic/toiletry case featuring removable individual pouches, $108. Marmi Shoes, 298-7633.


Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 33

Holiday gift guide

Revision Skin Care, a best-selling cream formulated to firm and lift the neck and décolletage, $73. Total Skin & Beauty Dermatology Center, 380-6123. Shipping available.

Dina Mackney, Turquoise Vermeil Earrings $195, Necklace $695. John-Willam Jeweller, 870-4367

Each piece of The Alabama Wild collection by Earthborn Pottery is adorned with a symbol representing plants that grow naturally in the Alabama wilderness. Made exclusively for Alabama Goods. Alabama Goods, 803-3900.

The Holiday Shop

A complete Christmas shop

Wood burning fire pit made in a proprietary cast ceramic, 29” diameter to 54” diameter, starting at $495. Elegant Earth at the Arbor, 251-0203

Open Now - December 24th Old Time Traditions, Unusual Ornaments & Gifts

Clean burning soy wax candles, Votivo Red Currant Candle shown, $32. A’Mano, 871-9093.

Celebrating Our 45th Anniversary This Year 2721 Old Rocky Ridge Road 205-988-4810 Mon.-Sat. 10am-5pm • Closed Sunday

Plaid scarf, can be monogrammed, $40. Annabelle’s, 979-4444.

Full Moon BBQ’s Ultimate Flavor Pack comes loaded with Full Moon’s Southern Seasoning, Famous Chow Chow, award-winning BBQ sauce and their To:$30.99. Joyce Ann very sought after Alabama White Sauce, From: Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 Online at


FAX: 205-824-1246 November

This is your ad proof from the over the mountain Journal for the November 5, 2015 is Please fax approval or changes to 824-1246.

please make sure all information is correct, including addres and phone number! please initial and fax back within 24 hours.

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 the paper Monday.

Sweetspire Gardens offers a wide variety of plants and pottery, custom designed and a perfect gift for the holiday season. Sweetspire Gardens 698-1391

Triple strand gold chain bracelet with pearl by jewelry artist, Carol Workinger, $298. Jezebel’s Jewels, 502-7669.

Thank you for your prompt attention.

34 • Thursday, November 19, 2015

Holiday gift guide


Classic dog paintings by local artist Kevin Webster. Arceneaux Gallery, 802-5800.

All natural colored diamonds set in white and yellow gold. Southeastern Jewelers, 980-9030.

A pair of kitchen towels, $19.50. Attic Antiques, 991-6887.

Mont Blanc Meisterstuck Classique ballpoint pen, black precious resin inlaid with Montblanc emblem with a gold-plated clip, $420.00. Barton-Clay 871-7060

George Balanchine’s “The Nutcracker™” tickets, $25-$55, tickets available Dec.11-20. Alabama Ballet, 322-4300.

Daniel Moore’s “Iron Bowl Gold” hardcover coffee table book with commentaries by Keith Jackson, $24.95. Hanging Around Hoover, 987-7879.

Fontanini nativities, finely handcrafted from Italy, starter sets begin at $150, and figures start at $19. The Blue Willow Gifts, 968-0909.

Agraria floral diffuser, bitter orange, lemon verbena, balsam, lavender and rosemary, set of 4 $175, $55 each. Roman Brantley Antiques, 460-1224. Edinburg 611-142 grandfather clock by Howard Miller, bestselling clock in the nation. $1000 off internet pricing. Braden’s Furniture, 655-2116.

Silk screened and handembroidered linen tea towels featuring the work of beloved self-taught artist Clementine Hunter $45. Fancy Goods, 978-1451.

$100 off custom heated seats. Offer valid through the end of the year. Alabama Auto Tops, 251-0684.

Spirit Jerseys, “Tacky Team Spirit” featured, $39.99. Campus Spirit, 977-7377.

Cardinal Christmas china, $45 a set, $25 dinner plate, $10 dessert plate, $10 cup and saucer. Greystone Antiques and Marketplace, 995-4773.

Vintage “old fashions” glassware, starting at $20. Soho Retro, 870-7655.

Art Planters,made of durable polypropylene, they are strong and lightweight, $12.99-$64.99. Wild Birds Unlimited, 823-6500.

Blessing bracelets, made from sterling silver and semi precious stones, $25-$30. Each bracelet has a card attached encouraging the wearer to use the stones as reminders of blessings each day. A Little Something, 970-2077.

Mark Ashton Influence long tassel necklaces, 29” long, $29.99. Flip Flops & What Nots, 967-7429.

Jack Black Men’s Grooming Skincare, starting at $20. Remon’s Clothier, 977-5512.

A boost of confidence, “minilift”. Petro Facial Plastic Surgery & MedSpa, 4208043,.

Coloring edition of the Twelve Days of Christmas Giving, $10 plus shipping. Southern Scribblings by Allison Adams, 914-2400.


Mountain Brook

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 35

holiday shopping

In the Villages of Mountain Brook!

Mountain Brook Village Open House, Thurs., Dec. 3rd

English Village Open House, Wed., Dec. 2nd CaHaBa VillagE Open House Tues., Dec. 1st

Tune in to JOX 94.5 for Christmas In The Villages starting November 30th for a chance to win daily giveaways from Mountain Brook Merchants and the Grand Prize...a $500.00 Village Gold Gift Card!

HOliDay paraDE

Mtn. Brook Village Sun., Dec 6th at 3pm

36 • Thursday, November 19, 2015

Mountain Brook

A’Mano A’Mano is a unique store located in the Mountain Brook Shopping Center. “Our vision at A’Mano is to showcase pottery, glass, gifts, jewelry and accessories by national and local artisans,” said owner, Lynn Ritchie, above. “We offer many one of a kind items. It’s hard to believe that this will be our 18th year in operation. We are always changing and growing. “A’Mano is a great spot to find a special gift for an anniversary, birthday or special event. We are known for our wonderful selection of greeting cards, especially the “New Yorker” cartoon cards. “The residents of Mountain Brook and surrounding areas have faithfully supported our store and we are so appreciative. We try to

give back and support this wonderful community whenever we can. “The store will be open on Sundays from 1-5 p.m. after Thanksgiving. We will have a party the night of Dec. 3 when the entire Mountain Brook Village hosts an Open House. Surprise store specials will be available that night. “A’Mano is a special store unlike any other and our continued mission is to provide excellent products and service at every turn. We hope to keep the excitement alive as we continue to grow and evolve. A’Mano has become a Mountain Brook tradition, offering the perfect gift selection and complementary gift wrap always. Visit us at and like us on Facebook for special offers and discounts. A’Mano is located at 2407 Culver Road, 871-9093.

A fusion between fashion and technology, the Might Purse is an essential handbag accessories for the modern day woman. The Might Purse features a hidden lightweight battery that can recharge most smart phones, ensuring that you will never be left powerless...

available at

Mountain Brook Village • 2707 Culver Road 871.9093

Bromberg’s Bromberg’s is a name that has been synonymous with quality in Alabama for 179 years. From its diamonds and fine jewelry to its selection of the finest gifts, china and crystal available anywhere in the south, Bromberg’s is an Alabama tradition. “We have thrived all these years because our customers are our friends and our neighbors,” Ricky Bromberg, pictured above said. “The Bromberg’s experience has always been about family and community, trust, quality and loyalty.” Bromberg & Company was founded in 1836 and has the distinction of being the longest standing family-owned retail store in the U.S. The company opened it’s first Birmingham location in 1900. The Mountain Brook store opened in 1959 and has become a landmark in the community.


The Summit location opened in 2002. “I have worked at the store as long as I can remember, literally beginning at age six operating the elevator at the downtown store. When I was a child, our family life and the store’s operations were so interwoven that I always knew this was what I wanted to do as my career. “I view my role with a great sense of responsibility. Our business was built by six generations of my family and we owe it to them and of course, to all our customers, to maintain our company’s mission to provide and unforgettable and enjoyable luxury shopping experience.” To find out about the many special events happening at Bromberg’s this holiday season, like Bromberg’s on Facebook and go to to join the email newsletter list. Bromberg’s is at 2800 Cahaba Road in Mountain Brook, 871-3276 and 131 Summit Blvd. at The Summit, 969-1776.

The Condo Shoppe/ Ingram and Associates LLC Sally Tuttle and Barbara Schilling, pictured above, of Ingram and Associates LLC’s the Condo Shoppe are ready to welcome visitors to Birmingham’s premier resource for condominiums. The Condo Shoppe has been developing, listing and selling condos for more than 30 years. “We have been involved in almost every condominium community from downtown Birmingham to Hoover,” said Margi Ingram, vice president. “Sally and Barbara offer a boutique approach to sales and listings that is designed to set them

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 37

MOuntain Brook


apart from others. Their expertise includes helping buyers and sellers in the condo, loft and townhome markets. Trust and loyalty is the foundation of their success,” Margi said. “So this holiday season call Sally and Barbara to preview the best Birmingham has to ‘We have been involved in almost every condominium community from downtown Birmingham to Hoover.’

offer in the condo market.” Sally can be reached at 281-6548 and Barbara can be reached at 266-1154. More information on the Condo Shoppe can be found at Ingram and Associates is located at 3660 Grandview Parkway, Suite 100, 871-5360.

Christine’s on Canterbury

caught her attention. “Through the years I have sold umbrellas, but by the time I left one vendor I felt I could open an umbrella store.”  MacKenzie-Childs remains a very popu-

Yes, they are back! After a short break, Christine’s on Canterbury, located just behind Gilchrist, opened Oct. 9.  Nestled in a smaller space, you will find new gift options, as well as many of the familiar items sold before.   A large selection of paper products from Caspari is available, including gift wrap, cards, bridge sets and napkins.   Always popular are the fragrances, but Jean Clayton, owner, pictured above, said that additions have been made with all natural and eco-friendly lines.  Beeswax candles, cards, and frames, a staple at Christine’s, are increasingly popular.   While at market, Jean says that umbrellas

MacKenzie-Childs remains a very popular line, especially with the introduction of new designs.

lar line, especially with the introduction of new designs. Napkins and tea towels from Le Jacquard Francais, and bedding and bath from Yves Delorme are available. “My goal was to have a happy and friendly atmosphere - to put a smile on your face! Customer feedback has been very positive,” Jean said. Christines on Canterbury is located at 2404 Canterbury Road, 871-8297.

Condos For sale HigHland

2600 Highland 2625 Highland 2717 Highland

$279,900 SOLD $209,900


Broadway Park


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Athen Flatts Broadway Park Capri SoHo WS Brown Park Tower City Federal

266.5535 266.5535 266.6947 616.5900

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Let it rain 'cause we've got you covered, incLuding our umbreLLa that changes coLors as it rains!!

Christine’s Canterbury


{ returnsRoad to retail• 205-871-8297 } 2404 Canterbury

38 • Thursday, November 19, 2015

Grand Bohemian Hotel “We’re excited about the upcoming holiday season in our new hotel,” said Thomas Hoffman, general manager of the new Grand Bohemian Hotel. The latest addition to the Kessler Collection of luxury boutique hotels opened last month in Mountain Brook across from Birmingham Botanical Gardens. “We offer a wonderful place for both local residents and family and friends coming in from out of town to stay and enjoy this very special time of year,” Hoffman said. The hotel’s restaurant, under the direction of chef Kirk Gilbert, will offer both a Thanksgiving and Christmas Grand Buffet. A New Year’s Eve celebration will include din-

mountain Brook

ner, live music and a countdown on the terrace. The Grand Bohemian is also the perfect place to have office or group Christmas parties. With so many wonderful amenities at the hotel some out-of-town guests may never leave the property. “The Poseidon Spa, cooking school with Birmingham chef Cliff Holt, a wine tasting room, a wine blending room where you can create, bottle and brand your very own unique mix and a retail art gallery filled with well-known international and local artists are some of the things we offer that make us much more than just a place to spend the night,” Hoffman said. Pictured above are Grand Bohemian food and beverage director Einar Gudmundsson and cooking school chef Clif Holt. Grand Bohemian Hotel is located at 2655 Lane Park Road, 414-0505.


Little Hardware In 1946, Lewis Little opened the doors of Little Hardware on Avenue F in Ensley, Alabama. After operating there for 13 years, an opportunity presented itself, in 1959, to move to the newly built Mountain Brook Shopping Center adjacent to Mountain Brook Village. Prospective businessman Frank Davies Jr. bought Little Hardware in 1965 from Mr. Little. In addition to being a devoted businessman, Mr. Davies was dedicated to his family. He and his wife had three children, all of whom worked in the store at some point in their lives. Mr. Davies’s son Frank Wesley Davies lll permanently joined the team in 1982, which made Little Hardware the family business Mr. Davies Jr. had dreamed about. In 2013 the decision was made to relocate to

Enlish Village in the former Park Lane grocery store location. “We are a family owned and operated business built on service and selection,” said owner, Frank Davies, pictured above with his son Wesley ‘We are a full-line hardware store.’

who also works at the store. “We offer bar-b-cue grills, pet food, lawn and garden power equipment, bird feed and feeders. We are a full-line hardware store.” “We will be open for the Open House in English Village on Dec. 2. Refreshments and snacks will be served. Little Hardware has lots of great and practical gifts for everyone. We are open from 8 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Mon.-Sat. Come visit and you may be surprised at all of the things we carry.” Little Hardware is located at 2117 Cahaba Road, 871-4616.

Happy Holidays! from your friends at

little hardware since 1946

Holiday Decadence! Indulge with family and friends this holiday season at Habitat Feed & Social featuring fresh, progressive cuisine including Bohemian Spiced Prime Rib, Turkey Supreme with Sage Gravy, Crab Cakes, savory desserts and so much more. Come gather at our table for your Festive Holiday Feasts. THANKSGIVING & CHRISTMAS DAY BUFFETS, 11 AM - 2 PM NEW YEAR’S EVE PRE FIXE FOUR COURSE DINNER, 5 PM - 10 PM After dinner, ring in the New Year with live music at the bar and a countdown at midnight on the terrace. RESERVATIONS AND INFORMATION: 205.414.0505 OR GRANDBOHEMIANMOUNTAINBROOK.COM

2 6 5 5 L A N E PA R K R OA D, M O U N TA I N B R O O K , A L 3 5 2 2 3

2117 cahaba road • english village • 871-4616


Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 39

Mountain Brook

The Cook Store

Table Matters Table Matters is a bustling hub this time of year for wedding gifts, Christmas gifts and holiday decorations. Owner Patricia Murray, above, said it’s her favorite time of year! “I love retail - especially this time of year,” Patricia said. “It’s always chaotic in the store as displays are getting dismantled to pull out magnolia garland or to get that special tablecloth for a customer. I love getting to see our customers preparing for special Christmas dinners and holiday parties, despite their hectic lives and obligations. There is nothing more intimate and personal than entertaining friends and family in your own home. I tell people all the time, you don’t have to have a four course dinner or sweat it out in the kitchen to have a dinner party. Keep it simple. Pick up or make ahead. Birmingham has so many wonderful caterers and

pick-up dinners available. Just grab some fresh flowers or an orchid and make a fun cocktail. Dim lights, good music and fun cocktails ensure your holiday gathering will be a success! “The best part of my job is the people with whom I work! I love to ask them, ‘What is your favorite thing we have right now?’ Here are some of their favorite choices for gifts this season: Lindsey Delong said china - you’ll have it forever. Ellen Sokol thinks everyone can use fresh guest towels by Scents & Feel. Mary Diddle can’t leave home without her Swell Bottle. Brooke Smith said that Nason Moretti champagne flutes make any party dazzling. Ginger Held said a piece of Annieglass is very versatile. Leah Ogard loves the Holiday Nest Candle. I personally love our new line of Christina’s World Christmas ornaments. They are exquisitely mouth-blown and hand painted by Polish and Czech artisans.” Table Matters is located at 2402 Montevallo Road, 879-0125.

The Cook Store is a kitchen specialty shop featuring functional pottery, pots, pans and gadgets for cooking and entertaining. “The Cook Store has been a fixture in Mountain Brook since 1975,” said owner Wesley Lassen, above. The Cook Store exclusively carries pottery skillets and sauce pans from The Pottery Works that are stovetop safe on both gas or electric cooktops. The store also offers kitchen linens, bakeware, cookware and more. “You can choose from All Clad stainless steel cookware, Doughmakers bakeware, Wusthof knives and pottery from local potters like Tena Payne of Earthborn Studios, Wade Oliver Pottery and Gidge Black Pottery,” she said. “We are looking forward to a crazy holiday season of selling, selling, selling and wrapping, wrapping and more wrapping. We have lots of great gift ideas for the person who has everything and the person who doesn’t have enough. Come check out our pottery, our many Himilayan Pink Salt items, Soapstone grills, whiskey stones, coasters, napkin rings, and lots more gift items. Our Holiday Open House is Dec. 3 and we will be open for the Christmas Parade on Dec. 6.” The Cook Store is located at 2841 Cahaba Road in Mountain Brook Village, 879-5277.

The Lingerie Shoppe

The Lingerie Shop is a full service shop for sleepwear, bridal wear, foundations, bras, panties, Spanx and almost any “accessory” to help with problem issues in lingerie. “We specialize in bra fitting and customer service,” said Brenda Meadows, owner, above. “The Lingerie Shop was established in 1946. It has been my honor to serve our wonderful customers since 1988 - 27 years! “We have planned for the holidays by having an array of beautiful and fun gowns, robes and PJs. We have a great selection of stocking stuffers such as initialed lingerie/bathing suit bags, fuzzy socks, satin pillow cases, beautiful shoe bags, satin shoe forms and, of course, Hanky Panky thongs.” “We are fully stocked with all the Spanx you can think of for all of your holiday dressing. “You can’t have a Christmas tree without one (or more) of our beautifully-wrapped gifts! It is written as a law, somewhere.” Store hours are Monday-Friday from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Visit our website www.lingerieshoppeinc. com to browse our collection online. The Lingerie Shop is located at 2403 Montevallo Road, 871-8996.

Give what you love... Love what you give! Earthborn Studios Pottery by Tena Payne of Birmingham

2841 Cahaba Road Mtn. Brook Village • 879-5277 M-F 10-5 • Sat 10-4

To: From: Date:

The Urban Muu Muu Style and Compfort Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 at FAX: 205-824-1246 Home. Nov. 2013 This is your AD PrOOF from the OvEr THE MOuNTAiN JOurNAl for the Tfax H Eapproval L I N G E RorI Echanges S H O P Pto E 824-1246. 11-14-13., 2013 issue. Please Mountain Brook Village, Alabama 205-871-8994

Please make sure all information is correct, including address and phone number! Please initial and fax back within 24 hours.

40 • Thursday, November 19, 2015

ExVoto Vintage Jewelry

ExVoto Vintage Jewelry is a collection of one-of-a-kind and limited edition jewelry created from antique and vintage elements. Made in the U.S.A. by designer Elizabeth Adams, pictured above. ExVoto combines vintage lockets and pendants with diamonds, semi-precious stones, Swarovski crystals, freshwater pearls, premium leather and chain heavily plated in 18K gold. The Elizabeth Adams Collection is ExVoto’s line of fine jewelry in 14K gold and sterling silver. A portion of all sales of ExVoto Vintage Jewelry goes to The Cure Starts Now Foundation for pediatric brain cancer research. “We have been in business since 2009 and we opened our Mountain Brook location in March of 2014,” owner Elizabeth Adams said. “Our Holiday Open House will be Dec. 3. We’ll have fun new arrivals and offer free machine engraving that evening! “The week of Christmas, our store will be opened until 6 p.m. each evening. Christmas Eve we will be open until 3 p.m. Our store offers unique gifts shoppers won’t find anywhere else. Our jewelry is beautifully designed and handmade in Alabama and makes a great gift for anyone on your list!” ExVoto Vintage Jewelry is located at 2402 Canterbury Road, 538-7301.

mountain Brook


Marguerite’s Conceits

Marguerite’s Conceits is a specialty boutique featuring fine linens, pajamas, robes and lounge wear, bath and body products, candles, diffusers and aromatherapy products. “We also carry Cinda b luggage and PurseN travel accessories for gals on the go,” owner, Marguerite Ray, pictured above, said. ‘We will have a trunk showing of inspirational plaques by Kay Sasser Jacoby’

“Holiday Open House is Dec. 3 from 5-8 p.m. We will have a trunk showing of inspirational plaques by Kay Sasser Jacoby and will offer refreshments and door prizes. “For the holidays, we have a new collection of outerwear apparel, scarves, gloves, ponchos and wraps which are perfect for our mild winters and also for gift giving. Our customer service can’t be beat and of course we offer beautiful complimentary gift wrapping. Many small gift items are pre-wrapped and read to go - perfect for teachers, friend or hostess gifts.” Marguerites Conceits is located at 2406 Canterbury Road, 879-2730.

Hoover The annual Christmas Tree lighting ceremony at Hoover City Hall will take place Nov. 30 at 5 p.m.

Happy Holidays!

OTM Communities Plan Holiday Events

Cities and merchants in the Over the Mountain area are marking the start of the holiday season with open houses, lighting ceremonies, parades and other signs of the season starting the first week in November. Here’s a rundown of community events in the works:


Homewood The Homewood tradition of lighting the star will take place on Dec. 1, and the city will host its annual Christmas parade on Dec. 8 beginning at 6:30 p.m. at the Homewood Library. Awards will be given for best of show, most holiday spirit, most lights, best use of lights and best decorated vehicle. For more information, visit Samford University will usher in the holidays with its annual Hanging of the Green on Dec. 3. The campus tradition is based on an old English custom and has been done each year for almost 30 years. The night begins with a holiday service at Reid Chapel at 6 p.m., followed by the lighting of the entire quad with candles. The grand finale is the lighting of the large Christmas tree in front of the library.

Mountain Brook

Selke Fleece Hooded Robe by Pine Cone Hill. $98 Super soft, super light! Available in 9 colors!

Tis the Season!

Created in Alabama by designer Elizabeth Adams. Visit our showroom in Mountain Brook Village.  

Crestline Village in Mountain Brook will hold its annual holiday open house Nov. 19. Various stores in the village will be running specials all day, with the main open house beginning at 4 p.m. Mountain Brook’s English Village will hold its open house Dec. 2. Stores in the village will be running specials all day and will stay open late. Mountain Brook Village will hold its annual open house Dec. 3 beginning at 4 p.m. Some stores will offer special prices all day in preparation for the event. The annual Mountain Brook Holiday parade will take place Dec. 7 at 3 p.m. The float procession will wind through Mountain Brook Village on Cahaba Road, Culver Road and Petticoat Lane. For more information, visit

Vestavia Hills 2406 Canterbury road Mtn. brook Village 879.2730

Vestavia Hills' Holiday in the Hills tree lighting festival will begin at 6 p.m. Dec. 1. Guests are invited to gather at City Hall for the lighting of the tree, local merchant giveaways and visits with Santa. For more information, visit

HOliday in The Hills


Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 41

Presented by the City of Vestavia Hills & the Vestavia Hills Chamber of Commerce Small Business Saturday-November 21 Kick-off your holiday shopping with great deals from our local merchants! Be one of the first 150 people to stop by the Chamber Office on November 18-20 to pick up a goody bag with coupons from our businesses. Several of the bags will contain prizes, including 10 with cash!

Tree Lighting Festival-December 1 Vestavia Hills City Hall, 6:00 pm 1032 Montgomery Highway Bring the whole family to see the lighting of the city’s Christmas tree and enjoy performances by Vestavia Hills City Schools choirs and dancers, and give-aways and activities from our merchants. Visit with Santa and play in the snow!

Breakfast with Santa-December 12 Vestavia Hills Civic Center, 7:30-10:00 am 1975 Merryvale Road Join us for a pancake breakfast and a visit with Santa. $1 Suggested Donation

Vestavia Hills Christmas Parade & Celebration December 13 Liberty Park Sports Complex to Alston Meadows, 2:00-4:00 pm Enjoy the city’s official parade followed by the Liberty Park Christmas Celebration with children’s activities, refreshments, music, pictures with Santa and more!

Visit for an extended list of events

Alabama Real Estate Investors Association Alliance Publishing Group-Vestavia Hills Living America’s First Federal Credit Union Annabelle’s/Vestavia Apothecary Artists Incorporated Gallery Ascend Web Development BB&T Birmingham School of Music Bradford Health Services Bruster’s Real Ice Cream Butler Snow Cahaba Fitness Cellular Sales of Verizon Wireless Collage Designer Consignment CORE, A Pilates & Cycling Studio First Partners Bank Gold’s Gym

Jackson, Howard & Whatley, CPAs Jimmie Hale Mission John Henley State Farm Insurance Liberty Park Joint Venture Mary Kay Cosmetics-Susie Serio Oliver Square OnTime Service Promotional Creations RE/MAX Southern Homes-Manda Luccasen Regions Bank Snapper Grabbers Spectrum Reach Stein Mart Stephanie Steinmetz Pediatric Dentistry Summit Express Urgent Care Vestavia Voice Xceligent

42 • Thursday, November 19, 2015

Petro Facial Plastic Surgery & MedSpa Serene, yet convenient. A quiet retreat right in the heart of Vestavia Hills. Formerly located at 700 Montgomery Highway, Petro Facial Plastic Surgery and MedSpa has moved to a new, larger facility at 905 Montgomery Highway. “The opportunity to expand my practice was irresistible!” said Dr. Petro, above, who is board certified in facial plastic and reconstructive surgery, cosmetic surgery, otolaryngology, and venous and lymphatic medicine. “We will have two floors, one dedicated to surgery, and the top floor for the MedSpa.” From the state-of-the-art operating suite to the breathtaking views from the lavish MedSpa, Dr. Petro’s new facility offers the

holiday in the hills

perfect amount of seclusion without sacrificing the convenience of its Vestavia Hills location. The expanded facility also allows Dr. Petro to introduce the latest in innovative treatments, from chemical peels, facials, and fillers to laser resurfacing and superior surgical options. “We researched everything new and bought only the very best!” Dr. Petro said. “We have the latest and greatest technology and look forward to showing you.” By taking a personal, individualized approach to each patient’s wants and needs, Dr. Petro instantly makes her clients feel truly cared for. Dr. Petro’s compassion and understanding for her patients delivers results that are more than skin-deep; they boost confidence from the inside out. Petro Facial Plastic Surgery and MedSpa is located at 905 Montgomery Hwy., #101, 420-8043.


Ashley Bryan Joins the Wald Team Mike and Hayden Wald are real estate agents who specialize in helping families purchase and sell homes in Vestavia, Mountain Brook, Homewood, and Hoover. They consitently rank among the top Over the Mountain Realtors. “We’ve been helping Over the Mountain families with their real estate needs for over 20 years,” Mike, above right, said. “What I love the most about this business is the strong relationships with all the families we’ve had the opportunity to help. Now, I’m getting to help the kids of previous clients find their first homes. I hope someday I’ll get to help the grandkids, too! “About six years ago one of our sons, Hayden, above left, joined me in the business. He is doing an awesome job with our buyers.

I’m so proud to be on the same team with him.” Recently, Ashley Bryan joined the team as the staging expert. She also does a wonderful job helping clients through the process from contract to closing. “I’m happy to be working with Mike and Hayden,” Ashley, above, said. “They have a well deserved reputation for taking great care of their clients and always putting their needs first. “The Over the Mountain real estate market is strong. But, it’s still very important that houses show at their best. That’s my specialty. Helping our clients make the right staging decisions. Mike photographs our listings and Hayden is our pricing specialist. It’s a winning combination that has helped many of our listings get multiple offers and sell for more than asking price. That always makes for happy clients!” You can reach Mike Wald at 541-0940 and Hayden Wald at 919-5535.

FIND THE Perfect HOUSE Thanks to our clients for another great year! CURRENTLY ON THE MARKET


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HOliday in the hills


November 19, 2015 • 43


Wild Birds Unlimited Wild Birds Unlimited is a unique specialty shop that “brings people and nature together” for the purpose of enjoying the hobby of backyard bird feeding. The store has been in Hoover since 1991. “We offer bird feeders, bird baths, nature products and other unique gifts for giving to and sharing with friends and family,” owner Joe Perez, pictured above, said. “Our Certified Bird Feeding Specialists (Davina, Jeff, Lisa, Lyn and Tracy) are experienced, customer-focused, and eager to help you and your family and friends enjoy nature! We stock the best and the freshest bird food in Birmingham. We have seed blends that are specifically formulated for the local Birmingham area birds. Be sure to visit us during the Christmas/holiday season when we feature our

Christmas seed blends, suet, cylinders and seed wreaths! Our Store Manager, Tracy, has been to the market and has found some extraordinary items for us to offer. “Come in to see our beautiful and unique items for your Christmas gift giving. We have many sizes and colors of hand-tuned Corinthian Bells wind chimes, decorative bird feeders and bird houses, our WBU exclusive Advanced Pole System and our WBU privately branded and fully guaranteed tube feeders, hopper feeders, hummingbird feeders and platform feeders. Our Eliminator Squirrel-Proof feeder is the best squirrel-proof feeder available, period! “Our hours are 10:00 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Monday - Friday, 9:30 a.m.-4:00 p.m. Saturday and 1:00-5:00 p.m. on Sunday. “Merry Christmas from Joe Perez and the staff at Wild Birds Unlimited!” Wild Birds Unlimited is located at 1580 Montgomery Highway in Hoover, 823-6500.

Morton and Carol Slaughter, pictured above, are the owners of Vestavia Hills Apothecary and Annabelle’s. Since 1988, with customer service as the hallmark for both stores, the Slaughters and their capable staff have enjoyed a wonderful opportunity to serve the community. In business for 27 years, Vestavia Hills Apothecary tops the list as a health care provider and remains one of the few independent pharmacies in the area. “Count on the pharmacy staff to always take time to answer questions and address your health concerns,” Morton said. Annabelle’s offers many choices for gifts and stationery. “Looking for gift wrap?” Carol said. “Come to Annabelle’s to find a wonderful selection of ribbon and raffia by the roll to enhance special holiday packages.” For invitations and stationery, Annabelle’s is one-stop with a design staff ready to help commemorate life’s events. From birth announcements and birthdays to graduations and weddings, count on Annabelle’s. As always, expect complimentary gift wrapping and excellent courteous service at Annabelle’s. Store hours are Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Vestavia Hills Apothecary & Annabelles is located at 1062 Montgomery Highway, 979-4444.

Merry Christmas from

Wild Birds Unlimited

Jewels By Rose

Jewels By Rose is now celebrating their 39th year in business in Vestavia Hills. Donna Jowers, owner, above, and her knowledgeable staff are eager to meet each customer’s special needs with jewelry design and gifts. “We offer a speedy in house jewelry appraisal service,” Donna said. “We are in the business of making people happy

Birdfood • feeders garden accents • unique gifts 1580 Montgomery Hwy Birmingham • 823-6500 Joe Perez • Owner/Operator

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whether you need a small gift from one of our designer fashion lines or an engagement ring.” Whether it’s platinum or diamonds, or a piece that looks like something from your grandmother’s jewelry box, Jewels By Rose has it. “We are a family owned jewelry store whose inventory includes platinum, diamonds, gold, gem stones, gifts and designer fashion jewelry. The uniqueness of the jewelry and exceptional personal service create a wonderful shopping experience for customers, many of whom are grandchildren of the store’s first customers almost four decades ago.” Jewels By Rose also supplies local businesses with die cut service pins, medical insignias and business logo jewelry. “Our family at Jewels By Rose has built the business on the principle of good service and quality merchandise at reasonable prices,” she said. Jewels By Rose is located at 619 Montgomery Highway, 979-5611.

44 • Thursday, November 19, 2015

business Grand Entrance


Grille 29 Restaurant Makes Its Debut in Birmingham

By Donna Cornelius

Journal photos by Kaitlin Candelaria


t took some time for Grille 29 to join the Birmingham restaurant scene, but it didn’t take long for the upscale-casual eatery to start drawing diners. On a recent weekday afternoon, a full house was expected for the night in the large Brookwood Village building that formerly housed McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood Restaurant, and Grille 29 still found a way to squeeze in a large group that needed last-minute reservations. The restaurant has a Huntsville location that opened in 2007, said Troy Goldman, director of operations for Restaurant Partners Inc., which owns both restaurants. Restaurant Partners is “sort of a five-legged beast,” Goldman said. “We do consulting, management, own and operate restaurants, do accounting and handle procurement for restaurants.” Dave Manuchia started Restaurant Partners as a consulting company, Goldman said. Before that, Manuchia was with Darden Restaurants, where he was a founding partner of the Olive Garden Italian Restaurant chain. “Our portfolio changes every year depending on our contracts,” Goldman said. “We have Sloppy Joe’s in Daytona Beach, Fla., and private clubs. We’re about to open Salt Air Seafood Kitchen in Key West and just developed a concept in Trinidad. We’re talking with people in Branson, Missouri. We go where the call takes us.” Opening a Grille 29 in Birmingham has been one of the company’s goals for a while, but company officials wanted to establish the restaurant in Huntsville first, Goldman said. The

Executive Chef Daniel Mitchell, above, was at Greystone Golf & Country Club before heading up the culinary team at Grille 29 in Birmingham. Below, clockwise from top left: Scottish Salmon Brulee is served with sweet potato hash and a caramelized onion. Sushi-grade Sesame Crusted Tuna is prettily presented with an edible logo of the restaurant. Troy Goldman, Restaurant Partners director of operations, said he’s moving with his family from Orlando to Birmingham. The Crème Brulee trio lets diners sample vanilla, chocolate and caramel flavors.

‘We have a warm, friendly environment. Our standards, our food, our wine – we take them seriously. But we don’t take ourselves seriously.’ Troy Goldman, Grille 29

Huntsville location has been voted best restaurant three times in the annual Taste of Huntsville and best in Alabama by Trip Advisor. “Once we got our sea legs in Huntsville, we decided we were ready to expand,” Goldman said. “We talked to folks at The Summit when the Cheesecake Factory phase was being built. We decided it was too soon, but we still wanted to be here very badly.” When the McCormick & Schmick’s building became available, Grille 29 was ready. “We thought coming to Birmingham would solidify our concept – to be in the same place as people like Frank Stitt and Chris Hastings,” Goldman said. After extensive renovations, Grille 29 opened Oct. 6. Diners who ate at McCormick & Schmick’s will see that the building’s striking stained-glass dome is still there. But the new owners added a 4,000-pound fish tank – there’s also one at the Huntsville restaurant – and lowered the floor of the middle dining room, which had been elevated. You don’t have to be around Goldman long

to see his enthusiasm for the restaurant’s main attraction – its food. “When we do newer developments, Dave, our corporate chefs and our executive chefs have spirited debates,” he said. “We don’t have stockholders. We can take the menus where we want to take them. We can make local decisions – local to this restaurant and to the seasons.” Several signature dishes at the Huntsville Grille 29 are on the menu in Birmingham. “Our Grouper Oscar outsells everything by a mile,” Goldman said. This creation, one of the Alabama Tourism Department’s 100 Dishes to Eat in Alabama Before You Die, is pan-seared black grouper

topped with jumbo lump crabmeat, grilled asparagus and hollandaise sauce and is served with wild rice. Also high on the restaurant’s most popular list are its Filet 29, which has gorgonzola atop steak wrapped with applewood smoked bacon; Stuffed Sea Scallops, full of a crab cake blend over edamame succotash and lobster mashed potatoes; and Sesame Crusted Tuna – sliced yellowfin tuna with ponzu, ginger, white sticky rice and wasabi. The Ginger Lime Sea Bass is another customer favorite. “A lot of places don’t carry sea bass because it’s so volatile in price, but it’s at the top of the

food chain,” Goldman said. On the light side, the restaurant has grilled artichokes with lemon aioli; Orange Beach Salad with fresh avocados, fire-roasted corn, shrimp salad, tomatoes and lump crabmeat; and the Wedge Salad, with applewood smoked bacon, tomatoes, egg, blue cheese and Parmesan ranch dressing. Only the most determined dieters are likely to pass up dessert at Grille 29. Goldman said the Chocolate Peanut Butter Truffle was voted best dessert in Huntsville for five years running. This treat is a French silk cake topped with peanut butter mousse and covered in chocolate ganache. Other sweet endings on the menu are the Crème Brulee Trio, Chocolate Soufflé and the Grille 29 Cheesecake. While many elements of the Huntsville restaurant made their way to Birmingham, everything isn’t exactly the same. “We’d never had a happy hour until Birmingham,” Goldman said. “It’s 3 to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday in our bar. We have half off our signature cocktails, the 29 Caliber and Blueberry Lemon Drop.” The 29 Caliber “is our take on Irish coffee without the coffee,” he said. “We use Bulleit rye bourbon with Kahlua and put it in a heated snifter.” When the snifter lid is lifted, smoke comes curling out of the glass. It’s a showstopper – as is the restaurant’s Bayou Bloody Mary. With jumbo shrimp, andouille sausage, olives, spicy green beans and grated horseradish, it’s almost a meal in itself. “When we serve one Bloody Mary and people see it, we end up serving a bunch,” Goldman said. Happy hour customers also can order the restaurant’s “Bar Bites,” including a variety of sliders and Parmesan Truffle Popcorn. Goldman said Grille 29 has 96 wines on its wine list, 35 sold by the glass. The Grille 29 signature wine is the Vineyard 29 Estate, a Napa Valley cabernet sauvignon. The restaurant’s banquet room will seat 80 guests for corporate and private events. There’s also a patio. The executive chef is Daniel Mitchell. The New Orleans native was executive chef at Greystone Golf & Country Club for about 13 years. “Executive chefs are often insane,” Goldman said, laughing, “But Daniel has not only the skillset but an incredible disposition. He’ll take off his apron and come out and talk.” Pastry chef Brandy Weidenthal “has been with us since she was 19, except when she went to culinary school,” he said. After putting new employees through what Goldman said was the company’s largest-ever training program, he and other members of the Grille 29 team were eager to introduce their concept to Birmingham. “We have a warm, friendly environment,” Goldman said. “Our standards, our food, our wine – we take them seriously. But we don’t take ourselves seriously.” Grille 29 is at 971 Brookwood Village. It’s open every day for lunch and dinner and has brunch on Sunday. For more information, visit or call 783-1295. Reservations are available through ❖

Iron Tribe President Jim Cavale, left with founder Forrest Walden at the Vestavia location.

Iron Tribe Set to Open Vestavia Hills Gym in January Iron Tribe Fitness might have started out in a Birmingham-area garage, but it didn’t stay there. Iron Tribe is set to open its 41st gym and its sixth location in the Birmingham area at the end of January. The new gym will be in Vestavia Hills on U.S. 31, according to a press release from Iron Tribe. “We love the fact that we are growing into new markets across America, but it’s always special for us to have the chance to bring another Iron Tribe Fitness community to our home city of Birmingham, let alone the people of Vestavia, who have been waiting to build their own tribe for more than five years!” Iron Tribe President Jim Cavale said in the press release. Birmingham native and former Auburn University cheerleader Forrest Walden, founder of Iron Tribe Fitness, received Auburn University’s Entrepreneur of the Year award in 2015 for his achievements

with Iron Tribe. The company’s mission is “to create fitness communities that change lives,” the press release states. “Iron Tribe is for anyone willing to make the commitment to change their life and we’ll now be able to reach more people with our newest location in Birmingham,” Walden said in the release. Iron Tribe’s hallmark is limiting membership to 300 clients per location and classes to 20 clients at a time to ensure that each person can receive individual attention to bring out their “inner athlete.” Iron Tribe has franchised locations in 12 states. For its newest location, the 3,300-square-foot building that formerly housed the Soccer Locker is being renovated. “This is a key location on Highway 31 in Vestavia, and Iron Tribe was the perfect user for this building,” Robert Crook, CCIM, associate broker for landlord Shannon Waltchack, said in the release. “Many people on our team have seen amazing results with Iron Tribe, and we were happy to help them find their newest home.”

Local Resident Founds Handmade Holiday Card Collective Jennifer Hunt of Mountain Brook has founded a company dedicated to providing custom, handmade cards and stationary, Dixie Design Collective. According to Dixie’s creative director, Holly Hollan of Vestavia Hills, Hunt found the inspiration for the company in 2014 after waiting a little bit too long to order her family holiday cards. She couldn’t find an artist who could create the hand-lettered cards she wanted on time. When she searched online, she hit another road-block. “No one was delivering online customizable calligraphy and art-driven holiday stationery,” Hollan said. “That is when the idea sprung for a website where discerning customers could go for handmade cards that were thoughtfully and

Electric Vehicles Will Be on Display in Nov. 21 Event

Photo special to the Journal

Journal photo by Kaitlin Candelaria

business briefs

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 45



Holly Hollan, Jennifer Hunt and Hunt’s Boston Terrier, Cami. gorgeously created by real artists.” Named for Hunt’s childhood dog, Dixie Design Collective provides cards that are designed by regional artists, nine of whom live in the Birmingham area. Each card is made by hand and supplied within 14 days. “We believe stationery should reflect the sender’s personality and delight the recipient and that is what we strive to deliver through the Dixie Collective: design-driven cards that inspire,” Hollan said. For more information, visit www.dixie-design. com.

The Alabama Clean Fuels Coalition will be displaying electric vehicles and answering questions about how to lower fuel costs in an event Nov. 21. Many electric models – including Tesla, Nissan Leaf, Cadillac ELR, Chevy Volt, BMW I3 and Ford Fusion – will be on display, and coalition representatives and partners will be on hand to share information and answer questions. “Our aim is to share a lot of good information about plug-in electric vehicles,” Coalition Executive Director Mark Bentley said in a press release. “We will talk about the economic and environmental benefits to driving an electric vehicle, the available incentives and the growing charging infrastructure in Alabama to ‘fuel’ EVs.” As more electric vehicle models become available and demand increases for the energyefficient cars, prices are dropping, according to the coalition. The free event will be Saturday 9 a.m. to noon on the lot in front of Krispy Kreme, at New Patton Chapel Road and U.S. 31 in Hoover. The coalition is a nonprofit membership-based organization that promotes clean, renewable, domestic energy sources. For more information, visit

December Chamber Meetings

The Homewood Chamber of Commerce will hold its December luncheon from 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Dec. 16 at The Club. The program will include a presentation by Governor Robert Bentley. For more information, visit www. The Hoover chamber will hold a luncheon Dec. 17 at 11:15 a.m. at the Hyatt Regency-The Wynfrey Hotel. For more information, visit

the big picture

Financial advisor Glenn Brandon has a lifetime of lessons to share Early Days "I dropped out of high school after attending for only two weeks and went to work full-time to support my mother and help provide for my brother and four sisters. That experience taught me a lot about priorities," says longtime Birmingham financial advisor Glenn E. Brandon, Jr.

adult children Paul and Sumerlin share a special bond built on a love of music. "I've been blessed to be able to provide them with something I never had; years of professional instruction. Sumerlin is a multi-instrumentalist, vocalist and film-scorer in NYC; Paul runs a marketing firm, Vehicle Media, that he founded 7 years ago but still plays in a folk-rock band in Atlanta on the weekends. He and I have always shared a love of music and business"

Glenn says he knew he would ultimately return to school to complete his education. "I later got my GED and through the External Degree program at the University of Alabama, completed my Bachelors degree" work ExpEriEncE Glenn began his career in the financial industry as a young trainee at J.C. Bradford and Co., a regional brokerage firm based in Nashville. During this time he pursued a life-long dream of earning a law degree attending Birmingham School of Law at night while rising up through the ranks at J.C. Bradford by day becoming a partner and sales manager with the firm. J.C. Bradford became an integral part of Glenn's life both professionally and personally. Glenn is just as dedicated to his clients and coworkers today as he was when he started in the business in 1982. family lifE Glenn's passion for helping his clients is exceeded only by his devotion to his family. He and his two

philanthropy Glenn has spent a lifetime helping others and as his business has grown so has his ability to make a financial impact on those less fortunate. "I know how difficult it is to be without, I've lived it."

Glenn E. Brandon, Jr. Managing Director Financial Advisor BB&T Scott & Stringfellow 205.445.2246

currEnt status Glenn recently joined BB&T Scott & Stringfellow. For more than a century, the Scott & Stringfellow name has been synonymous with clarity of vision, proven expertise and unwavering integrity. In partnership with BB&T, one of the nation's largest and most respected financial institutions, BB&T Scott & Stringfellow has the resources to support its clients with comprehensive, customized investment guidance - and then go further, ensuring that their investments are fully integrated with other components of their total financial strategy.

46 • Thursday, November 19, 2015


Inverness Elementary Installs Book-Themed Scarecrows Honoring an annual tradition, students and teachers at Inverness Elementary celebrated fall with the addition of scarecrows on the lawn in front of the school, according to school officials. This year, the scarecrows have been themed after each class’ favorite children’s book. The IES children, with the help of parent volunteers,

Trace Crossings Maker Studio Recognized at SSA Conference Trace Crossings Elementary School Principal Amanda Stone and Dana Joyner, STEAM facilitator, recently showcased the school’s new Maker Studio at the School Superintendents of Alabama fall conference. The studio, which provides alternate space for students to learn about topics such as math, science, engineering, technology and art, was one of 12 projects across the state recognized at the conference as success stories. “It’s about the students,” Joyner said. “Some students don’t do well in certain subjects. However, when they come to

began their constructions Sept. 14 and installed their finished products Sept. 17. After their stint guarding the school entrance, the scarecrows were moved in October to the Birmingham Zoo, where they remained on display for the duration of Boo at the Zoo. First prize went to Mera Price’s third grade class for their scarecrow based on “The Night I Followed the Dog.” ❖

the Maker Studio, they seem to succeed in areas in which they may traditionally struggle. The students connect and they all want to succeed in the Maker Studio.” The Maker Studio complements the school’s Makerspace, which is another alternative learning area formed in an existing science lab.

Briarwood Christian Achieves Dual Accreditation Briarwood Christian School recently underwent the dual accreditation process. “We are honored to be awarded dual accreditation by AdvancED and

ACSI and exemplary status by ACSI,” Dr. Barrett Mosbacker, superintendent said. “This is a remarkable achievement reflecting God’s blessings, the support of our parents and the professionalism and dedication of our outstanding teachers and staff who provide a world-class Christian education for our students.” AdvancED has a network of 32,000 public and private schools around the world and ACSI serves more than 24,000 schools in more than 100 countries. Both accrediting bodies score based on a comprehensive set of indicators and criteria, according to a press release. According to the accreditation team, Briarwood’s score placed it among the highest-scoring schools in the country.

Vestavia Hills Schools Contribute to Pennies For Polio

The Vestavia Hills School System raised money throughout the month of October for the Vestavia Hills Rotary Club’s Pennies for Polio campaign. At the high school, the Interact Club lead the fundraiser, raising well over $800. The money was presented to Gregory Jeane of the Vestavia Hills Rotary Club Oct. 23, the day before World Polio Day. The total raised among all schools was $3,200 and counting. In the mid1980s, Rotary International began a mission to eradicate polio globally and has seen the incidence of polio be reduced by 99 percent. The two remaining polio affected countries include Pakistan and Afghanistan. The club provided fliers for the schools with information on polio and International Rotary club’s efforts to eradicate the disease, asking students to donate at least 60 cents each - the cost of one polio vaccine. The money raised from Pennies for Polio will fund polio immunizations in the remaining affected countries. ❖

Photo special to the Journal

Mera Price’s third-grade class based its scarecrow on the book “The Night I Followed the Dog.”

above: Vestavia Hills Rotary Club member Greg Jeane with members of the Vestavia Hills High School Interact Club, from left, Leighton Martin, Caroline Moore and Grace Redden. Below: Students from Vestavia Hills Elementary Central participated in the Pennies for Polio fundraiser on World Polio Day.

Photo special to the Journal

Photo special to the Journal

Journal photo by Emily Williams


From left: Catie Gasque, Weathers Wolsfelt, Baker Gasque, Jonah Kipp and Ivey Patton pose with one of the many overflowing food bins at Cherokee Bend’s annual food drive.

Cherokee Bend Donates to Local Food Bank Cherokee Bend Elementary School hosted its annual food drive Oct. 20-23 for the Community Food Bank of Central Alabama. Students were asked to bring nonperishable food to fill the barrels in the school lobby.   The drive was led by Libba Vaughan and, according to school officials, food spilled over the sides of the collection bins. The collection goal of 730 pounds of food was met in a week’s time. The food donated is enough to provide one pound of food for every one in 10 children in Central Alabama who do not have regular meals. ❖

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 47



Photos special to the Journal

Edgewood Hosts 15th Turkey Trot

Three students at The Altamont School will have the chance to compete in the state championship for the First Lego League Challenge following their victory at the Birmingham qualifier earlier this month. Fifth-graders Noah Warren and Toby Conn, along with seventh-grader Jaye Conn, make up “The Variables” and have won the overall award at the Birmingham qualifier for two consecutive years as well as awards for robot performance. Now, they will go on to the state championship in Huntsville in December. The First Lego League is a club centered on teamwork, fun and friendly competition among more than 200,000 students in the United States with an interest in engineering and robotics. Each team must create a robot and design a solution project based on the theme for the year. This year’s challenge is based on creating real-life solutions for waste and environmental problems plaguing the country and the world. ❖

From left: Ashley Lewis, Anne Spurlock, Jane Dickens, Langston Hereford, Laurie King and Fred Smith.

Local Group of Realtors Supports Crestline Elementary The Fred Smith Group at the Crestline branch of RealtySouth has entered into a charitable sponsorship with the Crestline Elementary School’s parent teacher organization. For each home bought or sold in the Mountain Brook area, the group donates $500 of its fee to Crestline Elementary. The group also makes a donation for referrals that are made in the Greater Birmingham area. “Crestline deeply appreciates our partnership with the Fred Smith group,” said CES Principal Laurie King. “Thanks to them, we were able to complete our media center transformation by adding an interactive smart board for our students.”

In the past 12 months of the program, the group has donated a total of $8,500 to CES. The school used the April donation of $4,500 to buy an interactive digital media screen for the library and viewing screens for the media center. The most recent donation of $4,000 was delivered to the school Oct. 20. ❖

Mary Charles’ Doll House New, Collectible Antique Dolls 2820 Petticoat Lane Mtn. Brook Village 870-5544 Open Thur. - Sat. 10am - 4:30pm

Edgewood Elementary School hosted its 15th annual Turkey Trot this month with more than 400 students participating. Students have been training in P.E. classes once a week since the beginning of the school year in preparation for the race. Their parents, siblings and family members also were encouraged to participate in the race. The Homewood High School and Homewood Middle School cross-country teams assisted in organizing and hosting the race and the Trak Shak in Homewood donated race clocks for the event. Lynn Smith designed this year’s official T-shirts. In kindergarten and first grade, Lexi Fowlkes, Caroline Boney and Reagan Gray finished first, second and third for the girls. Boys in first, second and third place were Graham Morrow, Josiah Batson and Brody Lerner. For the second- and third-grade division, Jane Fowlkes, Camille Reidinger and Amelia Blish took the top three spots for the girls, and Will Meyers, Wes Burgess and Jake Dorough took the top three boys’ spots. For the fourth- and fifth-grade division, the top three female runners were Sarah Kemper, Martina Pozzo and Livy Dunn. The top three male runners were Harris Fowlkes, Weston Oltmanns and Jackson Warren. ❖

Coach John Dorough has worked with students throughout the year in P.E. class to prepare for this year’s Turkey Trot.

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Altamont Students in Lego League Qualifier

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Journal photos by Marvin Gentry

48 • Thursday, November 19, 2015

Tamara Aldridge leading the charge through the bust-through for the Exceptional Foundation’s game against the Homewood City Council. Inset: Josh Gregg was on hand to cheer for his friends on the Exceptional Foundation’s basketball team.

‘we play to win’ Exceptional Foundation Knocks Off Homewood City Council in Annual Showdown The Exceptional Foundation recently hosted its annual basketball game against the Homewood City Council. This tradition dates back more than a decade, and the foundation team has a 10-0 record against council members. On Nov. 12, the foundation maintained that winning tradition with a 43-35 win over the council. “We play to win,” Robbie Lee, Foundation athletic director, said. “The Exceptional Foundation is unique in that we’re the only organization in the entire state where we have our own special needs basketball league.” Lee said the game is a great way for the foundation and the players to show their appreciation to the city of Homewood and the City Council for all the support they provide. He said it’s also important because it gives City Council members a chance to interact on a personal level with people who receive services at the foundation. “It’s a whole different deal when you come and meet our guys and see how much they love to compete and life and being around and meeting new people,” Lee said. “It really means a lot to us and our athletes.” City council member Britt Thames said he looks forward to the game every year. “I really enjoy getting to have fun with the participants at the foundation,” he said. “The Exceptional Foundation is a very important member of our community.” For more information on the Exceptional Foundation, visit —Kaitlin Candelaria

Clockwise, from above: Joe Norton guards council member Alex Wyatt during the game. The Exceptional Foundation has a 10-year streak of defeating the City Council. Nicole Mack prepares to take a shot.

Ethan Keller brought his A-game and helped the Exceptional Foundation’s competitive basketball team defeat the City Council 43-35.

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 49



Run, Win, Repeat

By Lee Davis One of Alabama’s most enduring high school dynasties added another trophy to its already-impressive list of accomplishments last weekend and two younger powerhouses added some hardware as well. The Mountain Brook girls crosscountry team earned its 13th consecutive state title at Oakville Indian Mound Park. The Lady Spartans totaled 43 points to easily outdistance runner-up Hoover’s 79-point total in claiming the Class 7A crown. Spain Park was third with 92 points. Mountain Brook’s Frances Patrick took first-place individual honors by completing the 5,000-meter course in a time of 18:18.78. Her teammates Anna Grace Morgan and Nicole Payne finished fifth and sixth. Hoover’s Sidney Steely was seventh and Spain Park’s Sara Sim McGrath was ninth. “It feels amazing to win both the individual and team championship,”

said Patrick, a senior. “My time was a personal best, so that makes winning even sweeter.” Patrick said she felt a special spark for her final state cross-country meet. “The event always brings a lot of adrenaline,” she said. “Everyone runs with a little more passion than if it was just an ordinary meet. We had a lot to get done, and I didn’t want to leave any energy behind.” Another highlight for Patrick was what didn’t happen during the race. “I didn’t see any snakes,” she said, laughing. “And that was a good thing. I didn’t see any wildlife at all.” In Class 7A boys competition, the Spartans totaled 54 points to finish second behind champion Auburn’s 46 total. Hoover was third with 89 points and Oak Mountain was fourth with 102 points. Two budding dynasties from this area dominated the Class 6A ranks. In Class 6A girls, John Carroll Catholic earned 55 points to easily claim its second consecutive title.

Scottsboro was second with 87 points and Homewood third with 131. The Lady Cavs’ Lauren Granier finished third, while her younger sister Lindsey was fourth. Bella Restrepo and Isabel Reaves finished eighth and ninth for John Carroll, respectively. The news was just as good for the Homewood boys in Class 6A, as the Patriots claimed their third title in a row. Homewood scored 32 points to overwhelm runner-up Opelika’s second-place total. The Patriot foursome of Hunter Poole, Will Stone, Andy Smith and Sean Conroy sparked the victory, as each finished in the top 10. Poole finished third, Stone took fourth place, Smith came in fifth and Conroy brought in an eighth-place finish. In Class 1A-2A girls action, Westminster-Oak Mountain finished second with 49 points, falling just one point shy of champion St. Bernard’s 48 score. The Altamont School finished sixth with 168 points. Westminster’s Maddie Hoaglund

Homewood Flag Football Champs

Mountain Brook’s Frances Patrick, center, took first-place individual honors by completing the 5,000-meter course in a time of 18:18.78. Her teammates Anna Grace Morgan, left, and Nicole Payne (not pictured) finished fifth and sixth. Also pictured is teammate Anna Balzli.

finished fourth, and teammate Sarah Kate Lipperd was fifth. Altamont’s Mary Allen Murray was seventh, and Westminster’s Camryn Neal was tenth. In Class 1A-2A boys action,

Homewood’s Gentry Commits to University of South Carolina

Members of the inaugural flag football league in Homewood championship 4th and 5th graders are: Nicholas Hughes, Gavin McAbee Ian Maxwell Rigdon Gibbons, Layton Davis, Preston Graves and James Lard. Not pictured is Darian McClain. Coaches: Robbie Gibbons and Paul Davis. Assistant, Ryan Maxwell.

Homewood standout defensive end Griffin Gentry has verbally committed to play for the University of South Carolina in the 2016 college football season. The 265-pound senior took to Twitter earlier in the month to announce his decision. “Blessed to say that I’ve verbally committed to play football for the University of South Carolina,” the teen tweeted on Nov. 4. Griffin had a verbal commitment

Simmons Wins Metro Championship The Simmons 8th grade football team won the Metro Championship with a thrilling 25-23 win over Bragg Middle School on Oct. 15. Simmons finished the season with an impressive 7-1 record. The 8th grade team is led by head coach Brent Brizendine, “Coach Briz” who also won the Metro Coach of the Year award for 8th grade. This award is voted on by the Metro-South coaches. Coach Briz has won this honor three times out of the last five years. Coach Briz credits the outstanding season to the hard work by his players and his coaching staff.  The offense was led by

Shades Mountain Christian’s Dylan Pausic won the individual championship with a time of 16:20.40. Westminster-Oak Mountain finished fifth in the team competition and Altamont brought home sixth place.  

to Troy University before receiving the offer from the University of South Carolina.

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J’Marri McCall, Omari Brown, Jack Mayberry, Jamari Buye and solid play by the offensive line. Defensive leaders included Lawrence Hammonds, Dre Conner

and a host of other Bucs. Simmons 8th grade coaching staff includes: Brent Brizendine, head coach; David Brizendine, defensive coordinator; Phillip

Propst, offensive coordinator; Joey Chambers, wide receivers; Carl Berryhill, offensive line and Jeff Ray, defensive backs.

Photos special to the Journal

Lady Spartans, Cavs, Patriots Boys Repeat as Cross-country Champs

50 • Thursday, November 19, 2015

Friday Night Re-Lights sports


above: Hoover’s CJ Sturdivant picks up tough yardage against Vestavia in the Bucs 24-0 win over the Rebels. left: Vestavia senior wide reciever Charlie Sharbel stiff arms the Bucs’ Malachi Herron. below: Patriot defenders Baily Thomas and Nick Dutton stop a Clay-Chalkville runner. Spain Park quarterback Joey Beatty looks for room to run in the Jaguars win over James Clemens.

More photos at

Journal photo by Hal Yeager

Journal photo by Marvin Gentry

Any time Hoover and Vestavia Hills meet in football, the odds are that something special is going to happen. Certainly that was true Oct. 16, when the underdog Rebels shocked the Bucs 20-13 in what had to have ranked as one of long-time Vestavia coach Buddy Anderson’s sweetest victories. As fate would have it, the pair met again Friday night in the second round of the Class 7A playoffs, and the result was anything but a fall rerun. Hoover dominated the Rebels 24-0 at Hoover Metropolitan Stadium. C.J. Sturdivant scored two touchdowns for the Bucs, and Hoover quarterback Chris Vacarella connected with Shedrick Jackson for a score. Jayden Jordan’s interception of a Vestavia pass in the third period set up Sturdivant’s second score. The Bucs’ impressive victory sent them to the third round of the playoffs, where they will meet crosstown rival Spain Park on Friday. The Jaguars also defeated Hoover in the regular season, taking a solid 17-0 victory on Oct. 1. “The first time we played Vestavia they did some things we weren’t prepared for,” Vacarella said. “This time we had a better idea of what they would do. We worked on those things all week and knew that we had to execute better to win this time.” Vacarella also praised his team’s defense. “They really stepped up,” he said. “They had a big role in our win. I’m glad I don’t have to play against them.” The Hoover quarterback said he was looking forward to the rematch with Spain Park. “It’s always special to play them, but the main thing is that it’s a playoff game,” he said. “We’ll try to do the same thing as we did before the Vestavia game. We’ll study the film and learn from our mistakes in the first game. I think we are now playing at a much faster pace than we did in the loss.” Spain Park earned their way to the next round with a 13-10 win over James Clemens. The Jags scored 13

fourth quarter points to rally from a 10-0 deficit. “We challenged our guys at halftime, because I felt we got whipped in the first half,” Spain Park coach Shawn Raney said. “Our guys really showed up in the second half. I’m so proud of them.” Crosby Gray’s 25-yard field goal on the first play of the fourth period cut the margin to 10-3. The hosts tied the game when Chase Young intercepted a Jet pass and returned it 35 yards for a touchdown. Gray’s kick evened the score. Spain Park took the lead when Gray converted a 41-yard field goal attempt. James Clemens’ hopes for a comeback died when the Jets fumbled a punt return at their own 17, and the Jags’ Will Dailey recovered. “In a playoff game, a team has to keep fighting,” Dailey said. “Always keep your head up and don’t stop pushing.” In Class 6A, heavy underdog Homewood fell to defending state champion Clay-Chalkville in a 40-39 thriller. With his team trailing 40-33 with only 3:12 remaining in regulation play, Homewood quarterback Carson Griffis scored on a 44-yard draw play. Instead of attempting an extra point kick and a probable overtime period, Patriot coach Ben Berguson chose to go for the two-point conversion. “I didn’t want to get into overtime with them,” Berguson said. “I thought this (going for two) was our chance to win.” The gamble failed. Griffis’ pass in the end zone was intercepted by the Cougars’ Jamarlin Sewell to preserve the victory. A late Homewood threat died when the Patriots were stopped on a fourth down and one situation at Clay’s 31-yard line. Sewell’s heroics climaxed a back and forth battle during which the offense usually dominated the defense. Griffis was a star for the Patriots, passing for 222 yards and rushing for 80 yards. Also in Class 6A post-season play, Briarwood saw its season end with a 27-0 loss to Austin. ❖

Journal photo by Lee Walls Jr.

By Lee Davis

Journal photo by Lee Walls Jr.

Bucs Win Sets Up Rematch With Jags, Pats Lose Thriller

Thursday, November 19, 2015 • 51



“I’m getting a scholarship for lacrosse, so that’s my favorite,” she said, laughing. Growing up in Maryland, Mannon began playing lacrosse at an early age. In the fifth grade, she moved with her family to Birmingham as her parents took jobs at UAB. Mannon loved her new home but received a culture shock about where lacrosse stood in the youth sports pecking order at the time. “Maryland is a huge sport for lacrosse,” she said. “So I was surprised to see that it wasn’t nearly as big in Alabama, especially for the girls. “So many kids didn’t

even know lacrosse existed. But finally, I found the GBYLA (Greater Birmingham Youth Lacrosse Association) and began to play.” Mannon made an immediate impact, despite often having to compete against older girls. Later she led the Mountain Brook Junior High team to consecutive state championships in 2010 and 2011. Even now, Mannon finds a lot of curiosity about lacrosse from friends and fellow students. “I try to explain that lacrosse is a lot like field hockey except that the ball goes in the air,” she said. “Really, lacrosse is a mixture of several sports, and the skills

learned from it can be helpful in athletics generally.” Mannon said she is encouraged by the growth of lacrosse in recent years. “The GBYLA had a big event at Mountain Brook recently and a lot of kids showed up,” she said. “It was mostly boys, but there were a good number of girls there, too. There’s great potential and excitement for lacrosse growing out there, and I think it will just get better over time.” When Mannon isn’t busy on the lacrosse or soccer fields, she is active in school. She is the senior class president, a member of the National Honor Society, and an Altamont Ambassador. How does Mannon keep such a hectic pace? “It’s all about time management.” she said. “Everyone says that, but it’s true. It’s a little like an artist with a painting. He fully concentrates on what he’s doing at the time and at the end he has a masterpiece.” Admittedly, her schedule does get a little crazy at times. There was the day she attended a soccer event in Huntsville and had to race back to Birmingham for a lacrosse game. She made it – just in time for the start. “I’ve had some close calls,” she said. “But I’ve never been late.” Being punctual and juggling two sports has paid off for Olivia Mannon in a lot of ways. By signing with Fresno State, she completed her masterpiece. ❖

such as scoring and rebounding, but there’s another number that more accurately reflects Kline’s value to the Spartans. His varsity debut came as a freshman on Nov. 13, 2012, in Mountain Brook’s 74-65 win over Leeds. Kline’s game statistics were hardly overwhelming that night– no points and one rebound – but they began a legacy that continues more than three years later. He enters his senior year with 91 career wins at Mountain Brook under his belt, including two state championship rings. And who would dare bet against

the Spartans winning their third title in four years in 2015-16? “Jack is probably going to go down as the winningest player in Mountain Brook history,” McMillan said. “And that statistic means more than points or rebounds or anything else. He is simply a winner.” Kline’s attributes – both tangible and intangible – have drawn the attention of college coaches. Last week, he signed a basketball letter of intent with the University of Alabama at Huntsville. With his college choice made, Kline is ready to focus on this final

year of high school. And despite all the victories and championships already on his resume, he knows the road ahead won’t be easy. “We’re a young team, so there will be growing pains,” Kline warned. “We’ll be sloppy at times and there will be a lot to learn. But if we just keep working with our style of play and remember the things that have made Mountain Brook basketball great – hard work and being unselfish – we’ll be fine.” So take that to the bank. With Jack Kline’s knack for winning, he is in a position to know. ❖

LaCrossing Over By Lee Davis Plenty of high school athletes play two sports in a year. Olivia Mannon sometimes plays two sports in a single day. Mannon, a senior at The Altamont School, doubles as a lacrosse and soccer star. In the spring season, particularly, she can be a very busy young lady. “Since both lacrosse and soccer

‘Ever since the eighth grade, it was a dream of mine to earn a scholarship to play at the Division 1 level.’ have spring seasons, I’ve had to play twice in one day. Sometimes I’ll play lacrosse in one part of town and then race over to another place to play soccer,” Mannon said. “It’s been easier on everyone since I’ve been old enough to drive.” Since Altamont doesn’t field a girls lacrosse team, Mannon, a Mountain Brook resident, plays for the Lady Spartan varsity. She is a two-time all-state player at the center/ midfielder position and sees consider-


From page 52

pened here.” Mountain Brook will have a new look in the upcoming season. The Spartans return only four seniors. “We’re going to be relying on a lot of young guys,” Kline said. “They are young but very talented. We are probably going to get progressively better as the season goes along.” As one of the few upperclassmen on the Mountain Brook roster, Kline sees a different role for himself in 2015-16. “Since we’re such a young team, it’s up to me and the other seniors to play more of a leadership role,” he said. “We’ve been in the program for four years and learned a lot from the guys who came before us. Now it’s time for us to step up and be leaders.” An important part of leadership is performing at the highest level when

able time as a defensive specialist. Mannon earned all-state honors in 2013 and 2014 and represented Alabama at the U.S. LaCrosse Women’s Division National Tournament both years. She also stars with XTeam Black club squad. Her biggest thrill in lacrosse may have taken place last week, when she signed a letter of intent with Fresno State University. Mannon made a bit of history, as well. She is believed to be one of the first NCAA Division I commitments in women’s lacrosse from Alabama. “Ever since the eighth grade, it was a dream of mine to earn a scholarship to play at the Division 1 level,” Mannon said. “Having this opportunity makes all the blood, sweat and tears I’ve put into the game worthwhile. It will truly be a privilege to have the chance to play with the best.” Lacrosse is clearly in Mannon’s bloodline. Her older sister Eleanor plays for Wellesley College in Massachusetts. Mannon also is a starter for the Altamont soccer team, a perennial power in Class 1A-3A. Last season she won the coveted Coaches Award for excellence in the sport. But there’s no question which game she prefers. the game is on the line. And nobody in Alabama high school basketball in recent years has done that any better than Kline. For example, he scored 23 points with nine rebounds in the Spartans’ tense 72-69 win over Theodore in the Class 7A semi-finals last season. The victory put Mountain Brook in the finals for the third consecutive season. McMillan is probably Kline’s biggest fan. “Jack is a warrior,” the coach said. “He is one of the very best basketball players to ever play for Mountain Brook, but he’s in a league of his own as a competitor. As a coach, you don’t necessarily play your best basketball players when a game is on the line – you play your best competitors. Fortunately for us, Jack is a great player, a great competitor and a great leader.” In basketball, it’s always easy to get caught up in individual statistics

Photo special to the Journal

Altamont’s Mannon Loves Dual Role

Olivia Mannon earned all-state honors in 2013 and 2014 and represented Alabama at the U.S. LaCrosse Women’s Division National Tournament both years.

Last week Kline signed a basketball letter of intent with the University of Alabama at Huntsville.

Journal file photo

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Thursday, November 19, 2015


Run, Win, Repeat: Lady Spartans, Cavs, Patriots Boys repeat as cross-country champs P. 49 Homewood receiver Alec Marsch makes a catch over a Cougar defender.

Hoover quarterback Chris Vacarella celebrates a score with his Buc teammates.

lee davis

Jack of Diamonds

Kline Hopes to Lead Young Spartans to More Glory

Journal photo by Hal Yeager

so close Pats Lose Thriller

‘I didn’t want to get into overtime with them. I thought this (going for two) was our chance to win.’ Patriot coach Ben Berguson

Moving On Bucs Win Sets Up Rematch With Jags

‘The first time we played Vestavia they did some things we weren’t prepared for. This time we had a better idea of what they would do. We worked on those things all week and knew that we had to execute better to win this time.’ Hoover quarterback Chris Vacarella

Journal photo by Marvin Gentry

Journal photo by Lee Walls Jr.

Jaguar defensive back Bryan Sanderson stops a James Clemens ball carrier.

‘keep fighting’ Jags Step Up in Second Half

‘Our guys really showed up in the second half. I’m so proud of them.’ Spain Park coach Shawn Raney See story page 50


This will probably surprise some people, but Jack Kline’s goals for his senior season do not include another state basketball championship for the Mountain Brook Spartans. You couldn’t blame him if it did. After all, Kline was a key component in Spartan drives to the state championship in 2013 and 2014, followed by a runner-up finish in 2015. Instead, Kline adheres to the philosophy of Mountain Brook coach Bucky McMillan that goals have more to do with how a team plays than what trophy it earns at the end of the season. “Our goals are the same every year,” Kline said when contacted just days before the Spartans’ opener against Northridge last week. “We want to be the hardest-working team and the most unselfish team. It’s all about giving 100 percent all the time. If we do that, the games will take care of themselves.” Kline should understand McMillan’s approach as well as anyone. The hard-driving 6-4, 230-pound forward averaged 12 points and eight rebounds per game last season in helping his team to an unprecedented run of success. He’s almost certain to break the school record for the most career wins of any individual player to ever wear the green and gold. “It’s such an honor to be part of this program,” Kline said. “Coach McMillan is a coach like no other. I’ve been privileged to be able to make a contribution to what has hapSee kline, page 51