Page 1

Otmj over the mountain journal u

Photo special to the Journal


Thursday, december 1, 2016


Homes for the Holidays

ipc tour features Four Festivie houses page 26 • legacy league christmas home tour page 28 • idea house dresses up for christmas page 30


Cooking the Books Readers share recipes through Homewood Library’s Let’s Dish club. Food Page 33

seasons greetings A Behind-thescenes look at preparations for the annual OTMJ Holiday Card Issue. schools Page 44 Holiday Traditions Details on your holiday favorites, plus a few new ones. About Town Page 5

2 • Thursday, December 1, 2016

Opinion/Contents a preview: Left: Oliver Pang, third grade, Vestavia Hills Elementary Liberty Park. Below left, Bailey Blackstock, fourth grade, Edgewood Elementary. Below right, Hill Bromstad, second grade, Mountain Brook Elementary.

Special Delivery

Holiday Greetings otm students have been hard at work on our Holiday Cards issue coming dec. 15. Don’t miss it!

in this issue About Town 4 people 11 news 12 life 14 social 18 weddings 25

home 26 food 33 gift guide 37 Schools 44 sports 48


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.

murphy’s law

Vol. 27, No. 8

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 2016 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.

Not Even A Mouse


unveiled, there are new ones that are t last, it’s time to deck the just too perfect to pass up. halls. Harold and I hauled our They all were in their day. I had to old faithful fake fir down from buy the Yoda during my older daughthe attic last weekend. In a move to ter’s Star Wars obsession, the Mystery conserve energy, Harold had left the Machine when my younger daughter lights on the tree before packing it went through her Scooby Doo phase. I up last year, which turned out to be a picked up a fishing ornament the year mistake. We spent hours untangling Harold made his trek to Alaska and cords and spinning the tree searching another that commemorates his comfor plugs, but it all worked out and the mitment to the Mr. Magoo version lighting is finally complete. After a few of “A Christmas Carol.” As the girls more rounds of fluffing and folding of grew up, we added gymnasts and saxobranches, the tree will be ready for the phones, cartoon characters and college Great Decorating Extravaganza. mascots and a replica of the trolley we At my house, trimming the tree is rode in Ogunquit, Maine. an event. I set out a plate of Christmas Sue Murphy For myself, I bought mice. Lots cookies (homemade if I’ve had the of them. I still have the mouse ornaforethought and energy), put Christmas I admit it: I’m a cute ment that Harold gave me the year CD’s on the stereo and stage the ornajunkie, and mice are we were married. Actually, I just have ment boxes next to the coffee table. As each bauble is unwrapped, there is just about as cute as the mouse part. The ornament disinteyears ago. I’ve gathered plenty a requisite pause to say, “Awww…I they get. Still, what do grated of replacements, though. I have mice remember this one.”  mice have to do with in cookie cutters and mice in teacups, And trust me, we have a lot – I mean a lot – to remember. Last year, Christmas? Nothing mice talking on tiny little phones and asleep in matchboxes. I have mice the decorating went far into the eveofficial, but they man- mice flying planes and mice on ice skates ning, spanning the entire audio collecaged to score that and one mouse who is sledding on a tion of Bing Crosby, Perry Como, the Chieftains, Jimmy Buffet and Nat King “not stirring” cameo in computer mouse. What could be cuter Cole. The cookies disappeared before “Twas the Night Before than that?   I admit it: I’m a cute junkie, and we got through with the branches at Christmas” ... mice are just about as cute as they get. eye level, and we had to call out for Still, what do mice have to do with pizza reinforcements. Christmas? Nothing official, but they I fear this year will be even worse managed to score that “not stirring” cameo in – or better, depending on how you look at “Twas the Night Before Christmas” and the it, because I added another handful of ornatitle role in the children’s tale, “The Mouse ments to the collection. We already have in the Manger,” even though they were never too many. I know that. For each decoramentioned in the King James version. tion to be properly showcased, I’d have to I suspect that mice tug at our holiday have a 12-foot tree, one of those towering heartstrings. Tiny and vulnerable, they speak Whoville creations. But I don’t, so the poor to our better selves, our generous, protecornaments spend the holidays packed in tive selves, that person who truly wants not cheek by jowl.  even the least of us to suffer. Not even a I should resist buying more ornamouse. Sounds like Christmas to me. ❖ ments, but each year when the new crop is

over the Mountain Views We asked some of our furry friends at the Greater Birmingham Humane Society

What are you asking Santa for this year?


J O U R N A L December 1, 2016 Publisher & Editor: Maury Wald Copy Editor: Virginia Martin Features Writer: Donna Cornelius Staff Writers: Sarah Kuper, Emily Williams Editorial Assistant: Stacie Galbraith Sports: Lee Davis Contributors: Susan Murphy, June Mathews, William C. Singleton III, Emil Wald, Marvin Gentry, Lee Walls Jr., Bryan Bunch, Jordan Wald Advertising Sales: Suzanne Wald, Julie Trammell Edwards, Tommy Wald


“I want Santa to bring me a forever home filled with warm cuddles and catnip.”

“I’d love a home with a fluffy carpet so I can comfortably roll over for endless belly rubs.”

Elliott 4 years old

Kat 3 years old

“I’m hoping to kick off a new year with a new family that has a lot of love and warm milk to spare.” Tootie Merle 4 months old

“This Christmas, I’m asking Santa for lots of warm snuggles from a new best friend.” Alston 5 months old

For more information about these pets and others, please contact the Greater Birmingham Humane Society at 942-1211.


About Town

Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 3

4 • Thursday, December 1, 2016

About Town


Photo special to the Journal


Maggie Banks, second from the right with sisters Myca, Marlee and Maela, says her friends from OLS Catholic School have been very supportive since she learned she suffers from juvenile idiopathic arthritis.


8:15 & 10:45 AM



5080 Cahaba Valley Trace • Birmingham, AL 35242

Saved by the Bell

Vestavia Hills Girl Is Honoree for Arthritis Foundation’s Jingle Bell Run By Emily Williams If you saw Maggie Banks walking down the halls of Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic School or strolling around her Vestavia Hills neighborhood, you wouldn’t see anything but a healthy 12-year old girl. But Banks is managing her life with arthritis. She has been involved with the Arthritis Foundation since her diagnosis in 2014, and on Dec. 10 she will be the patient honoree for the group’s annual Jingle Bell Run. Banks was a normal girl who enjoyed swimming and playing basketball until one morning when she woke up with her head turned to the right, unable to move it, she said. “It was in March and I was waking up and about to get ready to go to Chuck E. Cheese’s for my sister’s birthday,” Banks said. “My head was turned to the side and I couldn’t move it at all.” Banks’ mother, Anne, said that she and her husband assumed it was a crick in her daughter’s neck and the problem would resolve soon enough. But it didn’t, and Banks ended up having to quit most of her extra-curricular activities. “It didn’t get any better,” Banks said. “There are a bunch of pictures of me from around then and in every one I’m turned to the side.” Banks’ mobility deteriorated rapidly as many of her joints began to flare up, and the Banks family and their pediatrician struggled for a diagnosis. No matter how many specialists they saw, Anne Banks said, they couldn’t find a reason for Banks’ increasing immobility. “We went to Disney World for Thanksgiving that year and we had to push her in a wheelchair because she could hardly walk,” Anne Banks said. Soon after the trip, Banks finally was told that she would need to see a

rheumatoid specialist. “To even get in to see a rheumatoid specialist, we had to pull a lot of strings,” Banks said. “But from about the second we entered the doctor’s office they told us that she had arthritis.” Banks suffers from juvenile idiopathic arthritis, the most common form of childhood arthritis. “Once we got that diagnosis, it wasn’t but one or two months before she was playing basketball again,” Anne Banks said. The diagnosis brought the Banks family in contact with the Arthritis Foundation of Alabama, where Banks was exposed to a community of kids just like her through family days and a free summer camp in Mobile, Camp Mash.

“The first things my friends did when I told them about it was ask, ‘What do you need?’” “When I was there I realized that I’m lucky,” Banks said. “I only have to take one (medicine) a week and I met kids who have to take different medicines every day. I didn’t feel as different while I was there.” Banks said one of her major struggles with her illness isn’t so much the occasional flare ups, but having to communicate her illness to others. “On the outside, I look like a regular kid, so it was hard to realize that people aren’t going to know that I’m sick just by looking at me,” Banks said. Banks has since done all of the explaining she needs to do at her school, Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic School. OLS even hosts Jeans Day fundraisers for the foundation throughout the year, when students can pay $1 to get out of their school uniforms for the

day. “The first things my friends did when I told them about it was ask, ‘What do you need?’” Banks said. “Now they know that if I’m swollen and flaring … I might need help.” Both Anne and Maggie Banks agreed that, though her routines have changed a bit, Banks is back to her old habits for the most part. Though the occasional flare up in her joints might inhibit mobility for a little while, she is still able to play on her school’s basketball team and enjoy her favorite hobbies. A fan of jewelry making, Banks has been spending weekends leading up to the annual Jingle Bell Run making green arthritis awareness ribbons to sell. Though it isn’t preparation for the event so much as a necessary habit, Banks has been running most every day. “I don’t really like it, but I have to do it,” Banks said. She will be joined by her three sisters, whom she calls her biggest fans, and a team of supporters. “We’re trying to cut down on our team size,” Anne Banks said. “This year we are at about 50 people, but last year we had 100.” The Jingle Bell Run will begin at 8 a.m. in the meadow area of Railroad Park and includes a 5K, a one-mile fun run, a Santa Chase for children 8 and under and an awards ceremony. Registration begins at $35 for the 5K and one-mile fun run, and the Santa Chase is $25. New this year, instead of receiving a race-day bag, each participant will receive a virtual race bag including coupons to local stores and restaurants such as the Pants Store, Another Broken Egg, Elle Boutique, Sugar Boutique Candy Shop, Village Sportswear, Marella and the Trak Shak. For more information, visit ❖

DEC. 1-15 Thurs., Dec. 1 HOMEWOOD

Hanging of the Green Samford University’s Reid Chapel The university will host its annual Hanging of the Green at 6 p.m., followed by the Lighting of the Way procession to Centennial Walk. The walk will be illumined and the evening will conclude with the reading of the Christmas story and the lighting of the Samford Christmas tree.

Dec. 1-2 Vestavia Hills

Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 5

About Town


The theatre will host a 7:30 performance by the Steel City Men’s Chorus, accompanied by Birmingham’s Sugar Babies dance company and Samuel Torres. The event will include harried secretaries, dancing Santa, Christmas Trees, carols and more. Tickets begin at $25. For more information, visit HOMEWOOD

Jingle All the Way Homewood Public Library Dolores Hydock and Bobby Horton, pictured, will mix traditional carols, songs and stories for a holiday performance beginning at 6:30 p.m. with a buffet of light hors d’oevres.

Fireballs the modern alternative

Tickets are $25 and reservations are required. For more information, visit BIRMINGHAM

“Dream, Girl” Screening The Altamont School Local non-profit GirlSpring will host a screening of the documentary “Dream,

Briarwood Christmas Shop Briarwood Presbyterian Church The church will host a holiday gift shop in the Fellowship Hall Thurs., Dec. 1 from noon-6 p.m. and Fri., Dec. 2 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. The free event includes door prizes. For more information, visit


The Salvation Army Angel Tree Brookwood Village The Salvation Army will place an Angel Tree in front of Kids-A-Million on the upper level of the village. Participants can select the angel, shop for the items and return the new and unwrapped gifts to the same location. For more information, visit BIRMINGHAM

Market Noel BJCC North Hall The Junior League of Birmingham’s annual holiday market will be open to the public Thurs., Dec. 1 from  9 a.m.-8 p.m.,  Fri., Dec. 2 from 9 a.m.-9 p.m. and Sat., Dec 3 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. General  admission is $12. The sale will include over 100 vendor stations and various scheduled special events. For more information, see story on page 36 or visit the Market Noel Facebook page or

D ENY D O U B T. To: From: Date:

Mike Sometimes you can be your own worst enemy. Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 And that’s when you need a teammate like FAX: 205-824-1246 Oct. 11, 2016

Andrews Sports Medicine & Orthopaedic

This is your AD PrOOF from the OvEr THE MOuNTAiN JOurNAl for Center. Because our experts aggressively Oct. 20, 2016 issue. Please fax approval or changes to 824-1246.

pursue victory over every injury.

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.

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Winter Wonderland McWane Science Center The Magic of Model Trains and Winter Wonderland will continue Dec. 1-31 at 5 p.m. Activities include an ice slide, an extended zip line, the McWane Train and the Magic of Model Trains exhibit. For more information, visit


Winter Wonderland at the Alabama Alabama Theater Local performer Kristi Tingle Higginbotham will join conductor Christopher Confessor for holiday favorites and a showing of Academy Award-nominated film “The Snowman” backed by the Alabama Symphony Orchestra.Tickets range form $22$46. For more information, visit BIRMINGHAM

Merry Everything! 4 the Holidays The Lyric Theatre

Go to to start making your comeback.

6 • Thursday, December 1, 2016

Finally! A new kind of Christmas Tree - Silvertip Fir -

About Town


Girl” featuring empowering female entrepreneurs at 7 p.m. The film will be followed by a live question and answer session with the filmmaker Grace McPhillips. Registration for the event is required. For more information, visit

Dec. 2-3 Rhythmic Circus, Red and Green Hoover Public Library The Rhythmic Circus presents a holiday experience combining their signature style of rapid- re tap with holiday music. The show has won numerous awards, including two SAGE Awards for Outstanding Ensemble and Performance, a Spirit of the Fringe Award and two Upper Midwest Emmys. Showtimes are at 7:30 p.m. For more information, visit


Available at

Christmas at Arlington Arlington Antebellum Home and Gardens Arlington will host a holiday event beginning Fri., Dec. 2 at 6 p.m. with the Hanging of the Green Candlelight Tour and Reception with tickets at $20. Free admission to the home will be offered Sat. from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and Sun. from 1 p.m.-4 p.m. The tours will include refreshments, entertainment, children’s activities, photos and warm cookies with Santa. For more information call 780-5656. VESTAVIA Hills

Leaf and Petal Over The Mountain Journal, phone 205-823-9646, fax 205-824-1246 November your aD PrOOF from the Over The MOuNTaiN JOurNaL for the st 2016 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.

The Magic City Nutcracker Vestavia Hills United Methodist Church The Arova Contemporary Ballet company member Jamie Kilgore will serve as guest performer for the show in the church’s Tyson Theatre. Showtimes are Dec. 2 at  7 p.m., Dec. 3 at 2 and 7 p.m. and Dec. 4 at 2 and 7 p.m. Tickets are $15 and $25. For more information, visit


Holiday Spectacular

Photo special to the Journal



“A Christmas Carol,” Dec. 1- 16 Birmingham Children’s Theatre The theatre will continue to perform a family-friendly version of the classic Charles Dickens Christmas tale on the main stage. Public performances are Dec. 9 at 7:30 p.m. and Sat., Dec. 10 at 2:30 p.m. General admission begins at $20 and children’s tickets are $15. For more information, visit ❖ RMTC Theatre RMTC Conservatory students will perform alongside local artists for a holiday performance. Ticket prices start at $19. Showtimes will be Wed.Sat. at 7:30 p.m. and Sat. and Sun. at 2 p.m. For more information, visit


Mountain Brook Art Association Holiday Art Show Brookwood Village The Mountain Brook Art Association will hold is ninth annual holiday art show Dec. 2-17 from 11-8 p.m. in the lower level in the former Banana Republic store space. Ten percent of the total sales will go to Hand in Paw Animal Assisted Therapy.

Dec. 2-18 Birmingham

A Christmas Story The Musical Virginia Samford Theatre Main Stage The theatre will host performances of the Tony award-nominated Broadway

hit, based on the perennial holiday movie. Showtimes are Thurs.-Sat. at 7:30 p.m. with 2:30 p.m. matinees on Sat. and Sun. Tickets range from $15-35. For more information, visit

Fri., Dec. 3 HOOVER

Annual Greenery Sale Aldridge Gardens The gardens will be selling greenery for wreaths, garlands and other holiday decorations from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. For more information, visit aldridggardens. com.

Dec. 3 and 10 BIRMINGHAM

“Twas the Night Before Christmas” BJCC The Birmingham Children’s Theatre presents this classic story adapted from the poem “The Night Before Christmas” by Clement Clarke Moore and is recommended for children ages 3 and up. Showtimes are at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. General admission pricing

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.

December 10th ( 9am - 4 pm) & 11th (11 am - 4 pm) at Earthborn Studios

for the journey Make wisdom your provision a more certain is it from youth to old age, for ns. essio poss r support than all othe - Bias of Priene


A New Book from



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Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 7

About Town


Richard E. Simmons III F

T i m e l e s s e s s ay s on The arT ing inTenTional liv


Li fe ´s G r ea t tr ea s u r e Richard E. Simmons III

e been or the last 50 years, I hav t of “wisdom.” intrigued by the concep er reading As a young boy I rememb wisdom, ut abo mon Solo of these words than jewels and “She is more precious pares with her.” nothing you desire com that nothing in this (Proverbs 3:15) The fact om grabbed my wisd with s pare com life e, I have spent a lifeattention, and therefor and and acquire it. erst und to long search of short essays on This book is a collection all my reading, wisdom. They come from writing over the past and hing teac , arch rese most strategic 40 years. I take 12 of the or five short four g idin prov areas of life, k closes with a essays on each. The boo sider to be five of the chapter on what I con es that govern life. most important principl

Best-selling Author of The True Measure of a Man


ake wisdom your provision for the journey from youth to old age, for it is a more certain support than allIII other possessions. - Richard E. Simmons -Bias of Priene, Greek PhilosoPher

k serves as a guide My hope is that this boo on your journey om wisd in walk to help you ful life. ning mea and toward a healthy


sity ents

“This is an outstanding book that provides great insight into how to find real meaning in life and how to live a wise, purposeful life. I highly recommend this to people of all ages!” – Miller Gorrie, founder and chairman of Brasfield & Gorrie

Wisdom is truly one of life’s great treasures. The word

“In this book, Richard Simmons inspires readers to make the best decisions possible in all areas of their lives. This book should be required reading for all leaders who want to demonstrate their faith in action. I highly recommend it!” – Chris Hodges, founding and senior pastor of Church of the Highlands

“wisdom” comes from the Hebrew word chokmah that literally translates to “skill or expertise in living.” This essential component of wisdom gives us the ability to see things as they really are, not just as they appear to be. For the last 50 years, i have been intrigued by the concept of “wisdom.” As a young boy i remember reading these words of solomon about wisdom, “she is more precious than jewels and nothing you desire compares with her.” (Proverbs 3:15) The fact that nothing in this life compares with wisdom grabbed my attention, and therefore, i have spent a lifelong search to understand and acquire it.

“This powerful book by my good friend Richard Simmons III, communicates the value of pursuing wisdom and how to live your life with an inner strength that will allow you to finish strong! A must read for the servant leader!” – Dr. Kevin Elko, life coach/performance consultant


Also by RichARd E. simmons iii

In December 2000, Simmons founded The Center for Executive Leadership (, a not-for-profit, faith-based ministry located in Birmingham, Alabama. When he’s not spending time with his wife and three children, Simmons can be found teaching, counseling, writing or speaking to groups across the country.

“In this book, Richard Simmons inspires readers to make the best decisions possible in all areas of their lives. This book should be required reading for all leaders who want to demonstrate their faith in action. I highly recommend it!” – Chris Hodges, founding and senior pastor of Church of the Highlands 200 Union Hill Drive, Suite 200 Birmingham, AL 35209 Jacket design by Jennifer Shoffey Forsythe

In December 2000, Simmons founded The Center for Executive Leadership (, a not-for-profit, faith-based ministry located in Birmingham, Alabama. When he’s not spending time with his wife and three children, Simmons can be

This book is a collection of short essays on wisdom. Richard E. Simmons III takes 12 of the most strategic issues in life and provides short essays on each. He closes with a chapter highlighting five of the most important principles that govern life. The purpose of this book is to serve as a guide to help you walk in wisdom on your journey toward a healthy and meaningful life.

“This is an outstanding book that provides great insight into how to find real meaning in life and how to live a wise, purposeful life. I highly recommend this to people of all ages!” – Miller Gorrie, founder and chairman of Brasfield & Gorrie

“In this book, Richard Simmons inspires readers to make the best decisions possible in all areas of their lives. This book should be required reading for all leaders who want to demonstrate their faith in action. I highly recommend it!” – Chris Hodges, founding and senior pastor of Church of the Highlands

“This powerful book by my good friend Richard Simmons III, communicates the value of pursuing wisdom and how to live your life with an inner strength that will allow you to finish strong! A must read for the servant leader!” – Dr. Kevin Elko, life coach/performance consultant “What Richard Simmons does best is make you think. He weaves together wisdom, truth, and facts to clearly present a picture on how to live a meaningful life. This book creates a map for readers of all ages that can be referred to again and again in their life’s journey.” – Kari Kampakis, blogger and author of Liked and 10 Ultimate Truths Girls Should Know

T i m e l e s s e s s ay s on The arT

of inTenTional living

Wisdom Simmons III

“I loved this book. Read it. Reflect on it. Respond to it. You WILL be wiser!” – Dr. Tim Hebson, University of Alabama dean of students

“What Richard Simmons does best is make you think. He weaves together wisdom, truth, and facts to clearly present a picture on how to live a meaningful life. This book creates a map for readers of all ages that can be referred to again and again in their life’s journey.” – Kari Kampakis, blogger and author of Liked and 10 Ultimate Truths Girls Should Know


buy thE book locAlly At: Lamb’s Ears, Mobley & Sons and F Smith’s Variety in Crestline, Harrison in Mountain Brook Village and Seibels in Homewood. onlinE: and Make wisdom your provision for the journey from youth to old age, for it is a more certain support than all other possessions. - Bias of Priene

or the last 50 years, I have been intrigued by the concept of “wisdom.” As a young boy I remember reading these words of Solomon about wisdom, “She is more precious than jewels and nothing you desire compares with her.” (Proverbs 3:15) The fact that nothing in this life compares with wisdom grabbed my attention, and therefore, I have spent a lifelong search to understand and acquire it.

This book is a collection of short essays on wisdom. They come from all my reading, research, teaching and writing over the past 40 years. I take 12 of the most strategic areas of life, providing four or five short essays on each. The book closes with a chapter on what I consider to be five of the most important principles that govern life. My hope is that this book serves as a guide to help you walk in wisdom on your journey toward a healthy and meaningful life.

- Richard E. Simmons III


Much of Simmons’ life has been devoted to giving back to the community by advising businessmen and professionals. Through these experiences, he discovered a calling for teaching and public speaking.

-Bias of Priene, Greek philosopher

Richard Simmons III, communicates the value of pursuing wisdom and how to live your life with an inner strength that will allow you to finish strong! A must read for the servant leader!” – Dr.Great Kevin Elko, Life´s treasure life coach/performance consultant Richard E.

W i s d o m is truly one of life’s great treasures. The word “wisdom” comes from the Hebrew word chokmah that literally translates to “skill or expertise in living.” This essential component of wisdom gives us the ability to see things as they really are, not just as they appear to be.


Richard E. Simmons III received his Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of the South (Sewanee) in 1976. He later studied risk management and insurance at Georgia State prior to beginning a 25-year career with Hilb, Rogal and Hamilton, a property and casualty insurance firm, where he was CEO for 10 years.

M“This powerful book by my good friend W i s d o m LifE S Great treaSure

Much of Simmons’ life has been devoted to giving back to the community by advising businessmen and professionals. Through these experiences, he discovered a calling for teaching and public speaking.

“This is an outstanding book that provides great insight into how to find real meaning in life and how to live a wise, purposeful life. I highly recommend this to people of all ages!” – Miller Gorrie, founder and chairman of Brasfield & Gorrie

ake wisdom your provision for the journey from youth to old age, for it is a more certain support than all other possessions.

W i s d o m LifE S Great treaSur

He closes with a chapter highlighting five of the most important principles that govern life. The purpose of this book is to serve as a guide to help you walk in wisdom on your journey toward a healthy and meaningful life.


Richard E. Simmons III received his Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of the South (Sewanee) in 1976. He later studied risk management and insurance at Georgia State prior to beginning a 25-year career with Hilb, Rogal and Hamilton, a property and casualty insurance firm, where he was CEO for 10 years.


This book is a collection of short essays on wisdom. They “What Richard Simmons does best is make you think. He come from all my reading, research, weaves together wisdom, truth, and facts to clearly present teaching and writing over the past 40 a picture on how to live a meaningful life. This book creates years. i take 12 of the most strategic ake wisdom your provision for the journey from a map for readers of all ages that can be referred to again youth to old age, for it is a more certain support areas of life, providing four or five short and again in their life’s journey.” than all other possessions. essays on each. The book closes with a -Bias of Priene, Greek philosopher – Kari Kampakis, blogger chapter on what I consider to be five of and author of Liked and 10 Ultimate the most important principles that govT i m e l e s s e s s ay s Truths Girls Should Know ern life. my hope is that this book serves on The arT W i s d o m is truly one of life’s great treasures. The word “wisdom” comes from as a guide to help you wisdom thewalk Hebrewin word chokmah that literally translates to “skill or expertise in “I loved this book. Read it. Reflect on it. Respond to it. living.” essentialand component of wisdom gives us the ability to see things o f i n T eYou nTional living on your journey toward a This healthy as they really are, not just as they appear to be. WILL be wiser!” meaningful life. – Dr. Tim Hebson, University is a collection —RichardThis Simmons IIIof short essays on wisdom. Richard E. Simmons III of Alabama dean of students takes 12 of the most strategic issues in life and provides short essays on each.

Life´s Great treasure Richard E.

about town


is $25 child and $20 adult. For more information, visit


Christmas by Candlelight Shades Mountain Baptist Church Musicians, artists and filmmakers retell the ageless Advent story from 2-6 p.m. This is a free event and there will be free childcare for kids ages 4 and under. 


Claus and Paws Brookwood Village The public is invited to bring their cats and dogs to the mall for pet photos with Santa from 6-8pm. Pets should be leashed or in a carrier for the safety of all.

Photo special to the Journal

8 • Thursday, December 1, 2016

Dec. 5 and 12 MOUNTAIN BROOK

Total Focus Workshop Grand Bohemian Hotel Join Meredith Hoffmann for a moving workshop on how to conquer your procrastination tendencies, unclear vision and self-limiting thoughts. Each workshop date will be held from 6:309:30 p.m. For more information, call 203-9435.


Walk Through Nativity Briarwood Presbyterian Church Each night from 6:45-8:45 p.m.,


George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker, Dec. 9-11, 16-18 Leslie S. Wright Fine Arts Center, Samford University The Alabama Ballet will continue annual performances of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker, a Birmingham holiday tradition. Evening performances will begin at 7:30 p.m. and matinees will start at 2:30 p.m. For more information, visit ❖ guests can take a walk through the church’s live nativity featuring 14 scenes depicting Jesus’ life. The performance will feature more than 900 members of the church and 20 live animals. Cold

weather refreshments of coffee, hot chocolate and cookies will be available. This event is free and wheelchair and stroller accessible. For more information, visit


Photos special to the Journal

Blue Light Special Art Show, Dec. 10-11 Cahaba ClayWorks & Earthborn Studios This event will be held Sat. from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. and Sun. from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. and benefits First Light Women’s Shelter. With a donation of $25, guests will receive hot soup and bread served in an Earthborn bowl for the guest to keep. For more information, visit ❖

Thurs., Dec. 8 HOOVER

Gifts of Art The House at Aldridge Gardens Nine artists selected by the garden’s Arts and Sculpture committee will be showcased from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Art available for purchase will include pottery, wood, glass, iron, jewelry, fabric, painting and sculpture. For more information, visit

Fri., Dec. 9 Vestavia Hills

Pops Concert Vestavia Hills United Methodist The VHUMC Orchestra will perform holiday tunes from 7-9 p.m. The orchestra will be joined by special guest Zachary Sayle, who played Crutchy in the award-winning musical Newsies. Tickets are available at   HOMEWOOD

“Sounds of the Season” Samford University

Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 9

about town


Opera Birmingham will host a holiday show in the Brock Recital Hall at 7:30 p.m. The production will feature

of “White Christmas” on Dec. 9. The theatre will host movie showings at varying times of day until Dec. 23. Movies include “Christmas Vacation,” “Miracle on 34th Street,” “Elf,” “It’s A Wonderful Life,” “Home Alone,” “A Christmas Story,” “A Christmas Carol,” “Meet Me in St. Louis” and a cartoon matinee triple feature. Tickets are $8 and each screening begins with a singalong accompanied by the theatre’s Mighty Wurlitzer Organ. Special showings of “The Polar Express” will serve as a fundraiser for Kid One Transport with tickets at $12. For a schedule and a link to tickets, visit


performances by soprano Allison Sanders, above, and baritone Daniel Seigal accompanied by John Roberson on the piano and the Opera Birmingham Chamber Choir. Tickets are $20 and student tickets are $10. For more information, visit


Holiday Movie Series Alabama Theatre The theatre will kick off its holiday movie series with a 7 p.m. showing

ZooLight Safari Birmingham Zoo The zoo continues to host the annual holiday light festival from 5-9 p.m. New this year, adults can enjoy beer, wine and specialty cocktails. This year’s dates include Dec. 9-11, 16-23 and 26-31. for more information visit

Saturday, December 3rd Wreaths & Swags of Freshly Cut Greenery, Berries and Cones

Beautiful Poinsettias for Long-Lasting Color


Jingle Bell Breakfast McWane Science Center Mr. and Mrs. Claus will host a holiday breakfast at 8 a.m. Activities include holiday crafts, building snowmen, an Ice Slide and an IMAX Dome showing of Santa vs. the Snowman. Tickets are $25 for adults and $20 for kids. Reservations are required. For more information, call 714-8414.                      

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Wishing You the Joy of the Season That Comes With Holiday Traditions To: From: Date:

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10 • Thursday, December 1, 2016

about town


Photo special to the Journal

Spring Valley School Participants will work together to pack and box 10,000 meals for children in the Birmingham area and those residing in a third-world country (to-beannounced). Packing will take place from noon-3 p.m. and donations will be accepted to help support Spring Valley programs and ship the meals. For more information or to donate, call 613-1200. 


Christmas Concert, Dec. 11-12 Canterbury UMC The Birmingham Boys Choir will hold its 39th Christmas concert on Sun. at 2:30 p.m. and Mon. at 7:00 p.m. More than 160 choristers will sing spiritual and traditional Christmas songs. This event is free and open to the public, but seating must be reserved. For tickets, visit ❖


Wacky Tacky Christmas Light Tour Avondale Brewery Tour buses will run every 20 minutes from 5-8 p.m., taking guests on a tour of the most outrageous light displays in Birmingham. Family-friendly bus tours will run Dec. 11 at 5:00, 5:20 and 5:40 p.m. and Dec. 13-14 at 5:30 and 5:50 p.m. Tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for children ages 12 and under. For more information, visit wacky

Thurs., Dec. 15 VESTAVIA HILLS

Holiday Luncheon Library in the Forest The Friends of the Library will

host its annual luncheon form 11:30 a.m.-1p.m., featuring fellowship and a potluck meal. For more information, visit

Save The date Fri., Dec.16 BIRMINGHAM

Handel’s Messiah & Vivaldi’s Gloria Alys Stephens Center, Jemison Concert Hall Carlos Izcaray will conduct a special concert in celebration of the holidays beginning at 7:30 p.m. Tickets range from $40-$80. For more information, visit BIRMINGHAM.

Feed the Need


OTM Communities Plan Holiday Events See Page 40

Winter Wonderland, through Jan. 16 Railroad Park The park is hosting a seasonal ice skiting rink for the holidays. Skating hours are Sun.-Thurs. from 11 a.m.-9 p.m., and Fri.-Sat., 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Hours are form noon-8 p.m. on Christmas and New Year’s Day. Admission is $10 for a two-hour session and skate rental. For more info visit, ❖

Journal photo by Maury Wald

Dec. 11-14

KultureCity Fit Vestavia Hills 5k Vestavia Hills Baptist Church KultureCity will kick off its inaugural 5k and one-mile fun run fundraiser with an 8 a.m. gunshot start for the 5k race. A 1-mile fun run will follow at 9 a.m. Registration for the 5k is $40 and ends Dec. 15. Fun run registration is $20 and ends Dec. 14. A post-race celebration will include bands, carnival games, face painting, pictures with Santa, free food and more. For more information, visit VestaviaHills/KCFitVestaviaHills5k. ❖


es g

Donald Sweeney to Be Honored for Contributions to Education Law Lawyer Donald B. Sweeney Jr. is being honored by the Alabama Association of School Boards with the Legacy Award, which was created specifically to recognize his contributions as an attorney for Alabama schools during the past 40 years. The award will be presented Dec. 9 during the AASB’s Annual Convention, held at the Donald B. Sweeney Hyatt Regency Jr. Birmingham – The Wynfrey Hotel. “For more than 40 years, his name has been synonymous with the practice of education law in this state, and his sound counsel has been invaluable to AASB, its members and countless school board attorneys throughout the state,” AASB Executive Director Sally Smith said. Sweeney, a lawyer with Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP, is nationally recognized as an authority in public education law and represents school boards and schools throughout Alabama, including in Mountain Brook, Homewood and Hoover. He was the founder and first president of the Alabama Council of School Board Attorneys and has served as president of the National School Board

Association’s Council of School Board Attorneys. Sweeney also has served as attorney for the past three Governor’s Task Forces on Education, as chairman of the State Attorney General’s Public Education Task Force and as state chairman for the National Organization on Legal Problems of Education. He is an adjunct professor of law at Cumberland Law School and authored “Education Law: A Legal Reference.”

Children’s of Alabama Names New Chief of Pediatric Otolaryngology On Nov. 16, Children’s of Alabama announced that Dr. Audie Woolley has been named chief of pediatric otolaryngology, replacing Dr. Brian Wiatrak, who has held the position since 1993. Both Woolley and Wiatrak practice at Pediatric ENT Associates, which specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of pediatric ear, nose and throat conditions. “It has been an honor to serve in this role at Children’s of Alabama for all these years but (I) felt it was a good time for a change in leadership for pediatric otolaryngology,” Wiatrak said in a released statement. “I will continue as a member of Pediatric ENT Associates and look forward to many exciting years under Dr. Woolley’s leadership and guidance as our practice continues to grow and serve the children of Alabama.” Woolley earned his medical degree from the University of Texas-San

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Antonio in 1988 and completed an internship at Washington University in St. Louis, a residency at Barnes Hospital in Missouri and a fellowship at St. Louis Children’s Dr. Audie Woolley Hospital. He was certified in otolaryngology

in 1995, the same year he joined Children’s. Woolley also serves as the hospital’s Cochlear Implant Program. Originally from Cisco, Texas, he resides in Vestavia Hills. “Dr. Woolley has built up a nationally renowned cochlear implant program and has attained an international reputation for his academic and clinical accomplishments. He has been a great partner and an excellent contributor to our medical center and our medical community,” Wiatrak said. ❖

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12 • Thursday, December 1, 2016

Switching Roles


Retired FBI Agent Takes the Helm in Vestavia Promising Transparency Retired FBI special agent Ashley Curry has spent much of his professional career concealing information. Now, as the new mayor of Vestavia Hills, Curry plans to spend time bringing more transparency and openness to city government. “I see the irony there,” he said. “What I’ve told people during the campaign is there’s not going to be anything secret. What I want to adhere to and what I promised people when I was running is that I would bring that FBI investigative mindset to anything we address. And what that means is we’re going to get all the facts before we do things.” Curry, 67, is embarking on a new chapter in his life, moving from one government role to another. He does so with a mostly new City Council, which took office Nov. 7. The only council member with previous experience is George Pierce, who is serving his third four-year term. Curry’s transition to mayor has

been a smooth one, even though he has much to learn. He credits former Mayor Alberto “Butch” Zaragoza for helping his transition into office go without a hitch. “He’s been just very gracious and very helpful,” Curry said. “He and I met (on) several occasions, and it has really helped this transition go smoothly. I’m very thankful to him, and I appreciate all he’s done to help me.” Curry said that, just as he did as a special agent, he wants to listen to what citizens are telling him regarding the needs of the city. To this end, he and the council have adopted several initiatives. They plan to schedule periodic town hall meetings based on topics of interest and concern to residents. So far, the city is sponsoring town hall meetings to discuss the city’s parks and recreation needs. “Something all of us promised during the campaign was that we would try to keep the community better informed and seek input,” Curry said. “That’s certainly something I’d like to do to make people

Ashley Curry

Journal photo by Jordan Wald

By William C. Singleton III

‘Something all of us promised during the campaign was that we would try to keep the community better informed and seek input.’

As the new mayor of Vestavia Hills, retired FBI special agent Ashley Curry plans to spend time bringing more transparency and openness to city government. He’s working with a mostly new City Council, which took office Nov. 7. The only council member with previous experience is George Pierce, who is serving his third four-year term.

feel like they can communicate with their elected officials.” The new administration and council also had a link created on the city’s website,, labeled “Vestavia Hills Listens” to gain feedback from residents about the priorities of the city. “We’ve got priorities, and we’ve got to determine which projects

come first. And we’re asking the public to help us with that,” Curry said. The mayor and council also changed the time of council meetings from 5 to 6 p.m. to make them more accessible to residents. “That’s another thing we heard during the campaign,” Curry said. “For people who work downtown,

when they get off at 5 p.m., by the time they’ve made it to council meeting, it was pretty much over.” The meetings will still be held the second and fourth Monday of each month. All of these moves, Curry said, are in an effort to be as transparent as possible and make government more accessible to its residents. ❖

Cities Agree to Enforce Water Use Restrictions During Drought By William C. Singleton III

As the drought continues throughout the Birmingham area, Over the Mountain cities are doing their part to encourage residents to use less water – even if it means levying fines. Homewood, Hoover, Mountain Brook and Vestavia Hills city officials in November declared Stage 4 extreme emergency drought conditions, following the Birmingham Water Works Board’s lead in responding to the lack of rain that has lowered water levels in reservoirs. The Stage 4 declaration increases the surcharge for BWWB customers who exceed 9,000 gallons monthly and encourages fines for watering lawns and washing automobiles, along with other activities that are deemed to use excessive amounts of water. The Stage 4 surcharge is a 400 percent increase for excessive water use. A Stage 3 surcharge of 200 percent had been in effect since October. Any fines, which could be up to $1,000, would have to be enforced by individual cities, said Darryl Jones, assistant general manager of operations and technical services for the BWWB. “The only thing the water works can do is implement these surcharges,” Jones said. “We ask all the municipalities we serve to have a drought ordinance so the weight of the city and the power of the city rest within that ordinance,

and the city can have its police force issue citations or tickets for those who violate the ordinance.” The ongoing lack of rain has forced the BWWB and area cities to take drastic measures to protect reservoirs and make water available for customers. Lake Purdy, the water works’

‘When you start talking about increasing water bills 400 percent, I don’t think many people are going to get out here using water they don’t need.’

Homewood Mayor Scott McBrayer

oldest reservoir, was down 20.42 feet as of Nov. 26, according to the BWWB. Another of its reservoirs, Inland Lake, was down 14.15 feet. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicts continued dry weather for the next two to three months, Jones said. “Even if it rains, it will not be a sustained rain that will bring us out of the drought,” Jones said. “We’re probably 10 to 12 inches behind in rainfall.” Through its drought management plan, the water works board is trying to manage the

amount of water it siphons from its reservoirs. But water works officials say they need cities to spread the word to residents not to use more water than they need. Many city officials have said they’re getting that message out. But they’re being judicious in the use of fines and citations. “It’s not our goal to become the speed trap of water violators,” Vestavia Hills Mayor Ashley Curry said, explaining that the city isn’t lurking to catch residents violating the latest restrictions. “I think certainly you caution the person because they may not be aware of the drought level and what it means. Now if you see them doing it two or three or four times” that may be a reason to issue a citation, he said. “We would do our due diligence in enforcing the law. We would be fair about it.” Homewood Mayor Scott McBrayer said the BWWB’s surcharge should be enough to discourage residents from outdoor watering. “When you start talking about increasing water bills 400 percent, I don’t think many people are going to get out here using water they don’t need,” he said. Hoover has four water systems that serve customers in the city – the systems for Birmingham, Pelham, Shelby County and Bessemer. Its water restriction applies only to customers receiving their water from the BWWB, but the city is encouraging all customers to conserve water.

Journal photo by Maury Wald

A Dry Spell

“We recognize we’re in a critical stage, and we need to honor the restrictions the Birmingham Water Works has put on us,” Hoover Mayor Frank Brocato said. Steven Boone, Mountain Brook assistant city manager, said he believes most residents realize they’re in an emergency drought situation and have responded accordingly. “I can’t tell you they’re all doing what they’re supposed to do,” he said. “But I think everybody, for the most part, is complying.” Local mayors said if there’s a silver lining in the situation, it’s that the drought comes at a time when it’s not as hot outside. “At least it’s not July when this is happening,” McBrayer said. “But it’s still a serious matter.” Brocato agreed. “As it gets colder, you don’t have to worry about that (watering grass) as much,” he said. “Also, people generally like to wash their cars in the summertime, whereas in the wintertime, it may not be as much of an issue. Certainly, as the cool weather comes along, it helps us. But we’re still under the drought, and the only thing that’s going to get us out from under that is a good healthy dose of rain.” ❖

Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 13



Journal photo by Emily Williams.

Time for chrisTmas!

From left: Rep. David Faulkner, Melissa Warnke, Mountain Brook Mayor Stewart Welch, Ricky Bromberg and Dan Bundy.

Alabama Retail Brings Statewide Holiday Tour to Birmingham

The Alabama Retail Association brought its Shop Alabama for the Holidays tour to Birmingham on Nov. 18 to spread its message for Alabamians to support local businesses and invest in their communities by shopping locally. During the Mountain Brook Chamber of Commerce’s November luncheon, at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens, Melissa Warnke, communications/engagement manager for the association, said shoppers are being asked to take photos with Shop Alabama signage and post the photo with #ShopAlabama throughout the holiday season. Rep. David Faulkner, R-Mountain Brook, was alongside Ricky Bromberg, president of local jewelry store Bromberg’s and Co., who was promoting the campaign wearing a different hat as chairman of the association. “This is a great way for us local businesses to come together,” Bromberg said. “It also pairs well with the

(Mountain Brook Chamber’s) Shop Local campaign.” Faulkner said supporting local retailers is an investment that reaches beyond store walls. “These people that run local businesses invest in sales taxes that help our state and they support local charities,” Faulkner said. “As an Alabama state representative, it’s important for me to support small businesses because they are the lifeblood of our state and of our economy,” he said. Faulkner added that the state’s retailers employ about 400,000 people a year and, when paired with local restaurants, have a $19 billion economic effect in the state. “Local retailers are an important pillar of the community,” he said. Helping spread the word during the luncheon were Mayor Stewart Welch and Chamber of Commerce board President Dan Bundy. — Emily Williams

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14 • Thursday, December 1, 2016

The Measure of a Man



By Lee Davis By almost any account, Richard Simmons had a near-ideal life. Simmons, a graduate of Mountain Brook High School and the University of the South, had a long and successful career in the property and casualty insurance industry. Marrying for the first time at the comparatively late age of 41, he had a strong relationship with his wife and three healthy young children. But something was missing, and Simmons knew exactly what he wanted to do. “I always had a desire to start a nonprofit men’s ministry,” he said. “I felt called to work with men to help them with the issues they face.” In late 2000, Simmons retired from insurance and founded The Center for Executive Leadership, which offers biblically based guidance to men. He sensed a calling to focus on men, as they are often confused about their role in today’s ever-evolving secular culture. In the years that have followed, Simmons has taught, counseled and spoken to individuals and groups throughout Alabama and across the country. “There seems to be a pattern in so many men’s lives today,” he said.

“They graduate from college and think they are going to make a lot of money, marry the woman of their dreams, have great kids and live the American Dream. Then they wake up one day and realize that their life didn’t turn out like they planned. Earning a living is hard, marriage is hard, and raising kids is hard. Some might call it a mid-life crisis, but I think it’s more of a spiritual crisis. That’s why I felt the need to work with men.” Through his ministry, Simmons has written a series of books promoting spiritual growth through the understanding of the Holy Scriptures and how they apply to men. His best-known book may be his third, “The True Measure of a Man.” “All the answers to our questions are in the Bible; God is always the answer, but really it’s even deeper than that,” Simmons said. “Society measures a man’s success by things like how much money he makes or what kind of car he drives, but those aren’t the true standards by which a man’s life should be measured.” Simmons recently completed a new book, “Wisdom – Life’s Great Treasure,” which is now available in bookstores. “This book is a collection of short essays on wisdom,” he said. “They



Our Final

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Journal photo by Jordan Wald

Mountain Brook Man Forges Spiritual Path for Men Who Have Lost Their Way

a calling: In late 2000, Richard Simmons retired from insurance and founded The Center for Executive Leadership, which offers biblically based guidance to men.

come from all my reading, research, teaching and writing over the past 40 years. I take 12 of the most strategic issues in life and provide a few short essays on each of them.” Simmons said that the lessons apply to women as well as men. “Proverbs 8:11 compares the value of wisdom to that of jewelry,” he added. “I wrote the book for people who see that life isn’t working out like they had hoped and want to know why.” Essay topics include: the nature of wisdom, personal growth and development, wisdom and true freedom, wisdom in the search for meaning, business and career wisdom, financial wisdom, relational wisdom, human sexuality, care of the soul, wisdom and a healthy life, the storms of life and fac-

ing morality. Wisdom comes from the Hebrew word “chokma,” which means skill or expertise in living, according to Simmons. “Wisdom is discerning what ideas are true or false,” he explained. “It’s about understanding the laws and principles that govern life and can make it flourish.” While having good morals is important, Simmons said, most important decisions aren’t about morality. “Of course it’s important to make good moral decisions such as being honest or choosing not to use illegal drugs, but most choices people make aren’t moral decisions,” Simmons explained. “They are decisions about finances, careers, marriage and parenthood. People of wisdom understand

that all of life is connected. Every decision a person makes can influence all aspects of their life. There’s a ripple effect.” As is the case with everyone, people of wisdom have problems. Simmons said that what makes them different is how they deal with them. “Wise people run toward their problems, not away from them,” he said. Simmons closes the book with a chapter on what he considers five of the most important principles of life. “I hope the book will serve as a guide to help readers walk in wisdom toward a healthy and meaningful life,” he said. In the past 16 years, Simmons has followed his calling and strived to make a difference in men’s lives. His newest book is the latest step in that journey. ❖

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Beards and Basketball Homewood Police Take on Exceptional Foundation in Annual Basketball Game

The Homewood Police Department’s Beards for Bucks campaign was in full swing Nov. 22 as it met up on the basketball court with the Exceptional Foundation Traveling Basketball Team for their annual game. Pacing alongside the players on the court was referee Mike Dubberly of WBRC News. Exceptional Foundation athletic director Robbie Lee said his team was playing for keeps on the court. “If they aren’t here to win, then what are they here for?” he said. “They came to the court ready to fight.” Regardless of the intense desire to take the title, each team fought with plenty of skill and sportsmanlike behavior. Lee said his team was in top shape, mostly because they play the game nearly every day they come to the foundation. “Basketball is an everyday thing,” he said. “It’s one of the first things they want to do when they get here.” Lee said the annual game is a favorite of the foundation’s participants. He added that the show of support from not just the police department, but the community members who make up the audience, is something that each player treasures. “There is nothing our guys would rather be doing than this,” Lee said, motioning to the court and audience. “They get to play, they have people cheering for them and they get to meet new people.” Throughout the month, the police department is raising funds for local charities including the Exceptional Foundation, the Lakeshore Foundation and the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. In addition to growing out their facial hair for the cause, the Dana officers took on The Grefseng Lakeshore Foundation in wheelchair flag football on Nov. 28. ❖

Ethan Keller

Journal photos by Marvin Gentry

By Emily Williams

Chad Littleton (11) and Regan Nance (16).

Dawson Taylor

Joe Norton

Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 15

16 • Thursday, December 1, 2016


Icy Dreams


For folks taking a stroll through Mountain Brook Village during this holiday season, Etc. has recently unveiled its winter window display. This year’s theme is “The Ice Ship of Dreams,” featuring an icy sea vessel amidst a frozen sea. Inside, a large oyster offers up a pearl to shoppers as they enter the store. The store’s tradition of seasonal window displays began in the winter of 2012, spurred by a trip owner Meg Margjeka took to Los Angeles to visit with long-time friend Ariana Nakata, a set production designer, and her business partner Emily Andelin. It now is a bi-annual tradition for Nakata and Andelin, who create spring and winter displays for the store in LA and travel to Birmingham to install them. The first window display featured a white peacock guarding a nest of golden eggs. This year’s display is not only a nod to the store’s stock of fine jewelry, but also to the recent opening of a store location in Aspen, Colorado. “The displays are important to me because they bring so much joy and a festive spirit to our village. I have seen a large increase in foot traffic based upon drive-by traffic at night and the weekends. They always want to come take a closer look,” Margjeka said. ❖

Journal photos by Lee walls Jr.

Mountain Brook’s Etc. Unveils Annual Holiday Window Display








up to

Above, Etc. storeowner Meg Margjeka describes the winter window display “The Ice Ship of Dreams,” as one part Peter Pan’s Neverland and one part fantasy crystal ice ship, showcasing the themes of imagination, hope and belief. “The ice ship correlates to the diamond slices and the beautiful stones like labradorite and moonstone,” she said. “The penguin is handupholstered and draped in beautiful beads and pearls.” Right, each of the display pieces is designed and handcrafted specifically to complement the store’s products. “The color palette is on par with the rich brown, burgundy, rose gold and sea tones, which relates to much of our merchandise in the store, especially the clothes this season,” Margjeka said.

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Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 17



Owen Stevens enjoys participating in the McCallum Park Rocks project by painting rocks then hiding them for others to find.

work into it, he is learning to then give it away. It’s OK that he doesn’t know what will happen to it or who will find it.” Not only are organizers hoping the rocks in the park will brighten someone’s day, they are also excited to see social media posts about the project. Stevens hopes people who find

or paint rocks will snap a photo or selfie and post with the hashtag #McCallumParkRocks. People can also spread the word by painting “Replace or Rehide, You Decide” on the back of the rock followed by the hashtag or the Facebook page reference. The idea for McCallum Park Rocks came from a similar initiative in Homewood headed up by Kris Geddert Black. The #HomewoodRocks Facebook page is approaching 650 members who post

photos and hints as to where the rocks are hidden. Organizers of both McCallum Park Rocks and Homewood Rocks hope the idea will spread to other towns where there isn’t something similar already established. To participate, read the guidelines on the McCallum Park Rocks’ Facebook page, then find a good rock and get started. Stevens suggests using acrylic paint and an acrylic or enamel sealer to weatherproof the design. ❖

Small Rocks, Big Impact

Vestavia Hills Residents Accent McCallum Park With Encouraging Painted Rocks By Sarah Kuper Finding encouragement, kindness and whimsy in unexpected places is the mission behind McCallum Park Rocks. A keen eye on a nature walk in the Vestavia Hills park will be able to spot rocks painted like animals, flags and other imaginative creatures. Some have messages or common sayings. Shelley Davenport Stevens is one of the organizers of the initiative. “Anything goes. Some are just encouraging and some rocks remind us of a certain shape or animal and we paint accordingly,” she said. There are many ways to participate. Park visitors can have fun painting rocks themselves or hunt for the rocks while exploring the park. There are guidelines on the project’s Facebook page about where

Photos special to the Journal

Joshua and Matthew Decker paint rocks that will be hidden in McCallum Park in Vestavia Hills.

rocks can be hidden, but Stevens said there is one big rule she is hoping participants follow. “If you find a rock and want to keep it, you are welcome to; we just ask you paint another rock and replace it,” she said. Organizers hope coming across a creatively painted rock will lift spirits, especially after a tense political season and approaching a sometimes stressful holiday season. “It has been a huge antidote ... . I don’t participate in a lot of the negativity but it can surround you like a cloud. This is a way to put something small and beautiful out there even if it is simple,” Stevens said. Stevens’ and her 9-year-old son spend time together painting rocks. “He is very active. He enjoys hunting the rocks and painting to see his ideas come to life,” she said. “Even though he puts thought and




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18 • Thursday, December 1, 2016


Photos special to the Journal


From left: Caroline Driggers, Caroline Beauchaine, Sandra Naramore and Jordyn Clark.

Mary and Gerald King.

A Toast to Service Tum Tum Foundation Raises Funds for Nonprofit Groups


Ashley and Andy Prewitt.

uests who gathered for any of the three installments of the Tum Tum Tree Foundation’s 27th annual Wine Auction Weekend Nov. 3-5 lent their support to more than one organization. Funds raised through a wine tasting at Regions Field, black-tie gala at The Club and tailgate at the Auburn vs. Vanderbilt game go to support Magic Moments, Kid One Transport, Mitchell’s Place, The Red Barn, The Alabama Center for Childhood Cancer and Blood Disorders, Glenwood Autism and Behavioral Center, Angel Pillowcases and UAB’s Institute for the Arts in Medicine. The wine tasting event also included a silent auction, followed by private winemaker dinners at several restaurants. The gala included a Pauley-style four-course dinner and live auction of items such as wine and wine experiences. Honorary chair for this year’s auction was Dr. Maddish Revana of Revana Family Vineyard, Alexana Winery, Corazon del Sol and Sitar. The event was coordinated by Tum Tum Foundation Executive Director Tom Miller along with board of directors members Peter Curtin, Susan Curtin, Doug Eckert, Kim Fowler, Stephen R. Hunt Jr., Jamie LeDoux, Stewart Lee, Kelly Logan, Susan Lowder, Ryan Lutz, Jake McKenzie, Danny McKinney and Brandon Smith. ❖

Ryan and Lindsey Luts.

The Southern Living Idea House is now our house. This summer, we invite you to see the Town of Mt Laurel’s latest collaboration with Southern Living Magazine. What began with our recognition as a Southern Living Inspired Community has expanded to include the 2016 Southern Living Idea House. Mt Laurel is proud to have been chosen for this showcase event that also coincides with Southern Living’s 50th anniversary celebration.

The Southern Living Idea House at Mt Laurel is Now Open, Wednesday–Sunday. Tickets $15 at the door.

(205) 408-8696


Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 19

social Clockwise from left: Gary and Mary Mattingly; Ron Helveston with Candice and Lee McKinney; Elliot and Amanda Robbins.

Good health is the greatest gift Your entire family can take advantage of having their dermatology care at one place. Call for your annual skin exam today! Visit our website for fabulous December specials:

Gary D. Monheit, MD ▪ James M. Krell, MD Melanie L. Appell, MD ▪ A. Michele Hill, MD Heidi Neugent, PA-C ▪ Natalie George, PA-C Allison Cease, CRNP ▪ Sara Hopper, CRNP

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20 • Thursday, December 1, 2016


Good Sports


Casino-Themed Party with an Auburn-Alabama Twist Raises Money for GI Cancers Jay Barker and Hannon Davidson.

Paul Petznick, DMD, FAGD

Paul Petznick, DMD, FAGD, who has practiced dentistry in Birmingham for 27 years, is looking forward to his new home in the Brookwood Dental Arts Building near Brookwood Baptist Hospital. His office is conveniently located in Suite 6, on the first floor. “I am excited to be opening a new dental practice in Homewood focusing on general and aesthetic dentistry,” Dr. Petznick said. The new office offers Dr. Petznick the opportunity to equip it with the latest state of the art services. “We are pleased to be able to offer digital imaging, soft tissue laser therapy, electric handpieces, and transillumination imaging technology” Dr. Petznick said. “We will feature new and cutting edge diagnostic services using intraoral cameras with fluorescence technologies to detect caries at an early stage. We will also use advanced systems for early oral cancer screening of soft tissues.” And while patients will appreciate and benefit from the latest technology in dental care, they will also notice a warm and caring staff of professionals dedicated to making their experience a positive one. “When patients walk in the door, we want them to experience a friendly staff focused on meeting their dental and aesthetic desires, in a modern, contemporary atmosphere,” Dr. Petznick said. “I grew up in Birmingham, and I am actively involved in the community. Patients know me and will feel right at home.” Appointments may be made with Petznick Dental by calling (205) 326-7444 starting December 12th. Look for updates on Paul Gaston Petznick, DMD, FAGD’s Facebook page.

Laurie Hereford and Patty Faulkner.

The Robert E. Reed Foundation hosted itsTo: annual Finish the Fight Paul and Eliza party Nov. 17 at The Club, kicking From: Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 off folks’ Iron Bowl preparations. FAX: 205-824-1246 The casino-themed party offered November a varietyDate: of game tables with celebrity football players serving This is your AD PrOOF from the OvEr THE MOuNTAiN JOurNAl for the as dealers. Controlling the cards at various tables were formerDec. Tide 1st issue. Please email approval or changes to 824-1246. and Tiger standouts: Greg Carr, Please make sure all information is correct, Corey Reamer, Reggie Torbor and John Parker Wilson. Honorary chairs for the eve- including address and phone number! ning, representing their respective rival teams, were Jay Barker, for the University of Alabama, and Ben Tamburellow, for Auburn Carolyn Reed and Marty Heslin. University. In addition to football fun, guests enjoyed a cocktail buffet, music by The Negotiators, silent and live auctions and fireworks off the venue’s patio. The evening’s program included a “Faces of GI Cancer” presentation in which patients shared their journeys through treatment. Patient participants included Sue Clements, Richard Horn, Nancy Pearson, Wayne Miller and Nanci Stewart. The foundation will use funds raised through the event to support GI cancer patients and research at UAB. ❖

Journal photos by Jullie Edwards

Petznick Dental to Open In Homewood

Above, Mary Noble Massey, Susan Doidge and Roxanne Mackin. Below, Caroline Sims and Lee Edwards.

Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 21



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Carolyn Reed, Lee and Joy Cooper.

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

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

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22 • Thursday, December 1, 2016



Give what you love... Love what you give!

15 years of crazy christmas gifts!

Journal photos by Jordan Wald

AKA Fall_OMJ_Ad_Layout 1

2841 Cahaba Road Mtn. Brook Village • 879-5277 M-F 10-5 • Sat 10-4 11/22/16 11:38 PM Page 1 From left: Kristi Rodgers,Tom Robinson, Amber Kinney and Averi Mitchell.

A Tisket a Tasket

Firehouse Shelter Throws Blue Jeans and Baskets Fundraiser

With 345 guests in attendance, the Firehouse Shelter’s Blue Jeans and Baskets event broke last year’s records by raising $62,400. The funds will benefit the organization’s This is your AD PrOOF from the OvEr THE MOuNTAiN JOurNAl for the efforts to support the homeless community in 12-1-16 issue. Please fax approval or changes to 824-1246. Birmingham. Guests were treated to wine by Please make sure all information is correct, E&J Gallo Winery and beer provida.k.a. ed by Supreme Beverage Company including address and phone number! Inc. The evening began with a jazz Please initial and fax back within 24 hours. set performed by The Schmohawks, l before the press followed if we have not heard from you by 5 pmg ofi the Friday date, by a silent auction and a tuthe ffpaper Monday. your ad will run as is. Wes print basket raffle. Thank you for your prompt attention. Jeh Jeh Pruitt of Fox 6 Sports 2906 18th St. So. • Downtown Homewood • 205.802.7735 served as the emcee for the evening and turned the guests’ attention to a prayer of blessing by board President Danny Rodgers, a message from Executive Director Anne Wright and a moment of recognition for Firehouse Shelter volunteers, staff and board members. Will Pearson of Mental Floss followed on the stage, leading a live auction featuring big ticket items such as a football autographed by Nick Saban, Goo Goo Dolls concert tickets, Iron Bowl tickets, and vacation and restaurant packages. The event was hosted by the

To: From: Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 FAX: 205-824-1246 Date: November



Emily Callen and Kendall Carbonie.

shelter’s junior board, with planning led by President Philemon Croft; Scarlett Simmons, bash event planner; Matt Cate, bash logistics coordinator; and Luke Newell, live auction coordinator. Also aiding in the event’s organization were Kathryn

Newell, Mary Frances Somerall, Mary Claire Hunter, Laura Dicas, Wes Smith, Sammy Slack, Josh Williams, L’Tryce Slade, Major Click, Nick D’Alessandro, Anne Know, Austin Averitt, Jeff Rodgers and Robby Hayes. ❖ Josh Williams, radio personality Madison of 102.5 The Bull, Dale and Lisa Davis

Canterbury United Methodist Church 350 Overbrook Rd. | Birmingham, AL | 35213

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Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 23




Journal photos by Jordan Wald

and Bulova are registered trademarks. © 2016 Bulova Corporation. 96B251

From left: Madison Prokop, Olivia Prokop, Amanda Howard, Louisa Howard and Doug Howard.

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Wags ‘n Whiskers Hosts Pet-Friendly Halloween Bash Wags ‘n Whiskers Comprehensive Pet Care hosted a Halloween-themed event, (Pup)kins and Pints, Oct. 29 at Cahaba Brewing Company. Humans and pets alike turned out in costume for the evening. In addition to performances by local musicians, local vendors turned out for the event, including Cahabones, Fetch, Doodles Homemade Sorbets and Ices, Dogs of Bham and DogAde. A pet costume contest was held, with the first-prize

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winner receiving a 10-day daycare package certificate to Wags ‘n Whiskers. Each guest was entered into a raffle for a gift basket full of great prizes such as gift certificates from Jazzy J Designs, The Whole Dog Market and Cahabones, and a one-day daycare certificate at Wags ‘n Whiskers. Proceeds from the event will help provide food and To: care for the animals of Wags ‘n Whiskers Rescue. ❖From:

Spreading The Word

YouthServe Hosts Open House for Local Business Community Council, spoke about how his time serving on the Carver Student Changemakers Council has changed his world view. Sojourner RoucoCrenshaw, a YouthServe Youth Action Council member and student at Jefferson County International Baccalaureate School, spoke about her life-changing weeks at Urban Service Camp this summer and her involvement as a member of the Youth Action Council. Board members from the OTM area in attendance included Todd From left: Jane Hoerner, Beth Peters, Caroline McClain and Emily Schultz.


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

Fredella of Mountain Brook, Melanie McNary of Hoover, Will This is your ad proof from the over the mountain Journal for the Ratliff of Mountain Brook, Emilydecember 1, 2016 issue. Please contact your sales representative as soon as possible to Shultz of Forest Park and John approve your ad or make changes. You may fax approval or changes to 824-1246. Saxon of Forest Park. Please make sure all information is correct, Staff in attendance included including address and phone number! Meesha Emmett, Jennifer Hatchett and Daniel Ross. Other guests in attendance were: please initial and fax back within 24 hours. Brian Barze, Patrick Bradford, If we have not heard from you by 5 pm of the Friday before the press date, Whether orWe Fuel, STIHL Makes a Powerful Gift. Dan Bundy, Andrew Colson, your ad will Battery run as is. print the paper Monday. Pascal Caputo, Mike Carpenter, FS 38 Thank you for your prompt attention. TRIMMER Lisa Cooper, Roger Fuston, Nancy $ $129.95 Goedecke, Robert Harris, Brian 00000 Heslop, Jane Hoerner, Caroline BGA 85 BATTERY-POWERED “I couldn’t be MS 170 McClain, Carrie Rouco-Crenshaw, more happy with BLOWER CHAIN SAW the product. It Keith Parrott, David Perry, Beth fires right up, $ 00 $ 00 $179.95 $229.95 000 000 runs strong and Peters, Eva Robertson, Tyrone is effortless 16” bar to operate.“ Silmon, Robert Sprain, Melva Tate, “No more cords to get out, and I don’t “Can’t say enough about this – user Smitty44 Jordan Wood and Robert Yeilding. ❖ have to mix fuel. My wife loves it!” product--well made, great


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Drive a LittLe • Save a Lot

Photo special to the Journal

The board of directors for YouthServe, an organization that teaches students about the importance of civic engagement, held an open house Nov. 3 at Cadence Bank, inviting local business figures to mingle with YouthServe students. The event was hosted by YouthServe board member Todd Fredella, senior vice president of Cadence Insurance. Guests from industries across the community learned more about YouthServe and its transformative programming from youth program participants and the Birmingham Education Foundation. Speakers included Dasha Shaw, program specialist at the Birmingham Education Foundation, who spoke about the impact of the Student Changemakers Council, YouthServe’s program that partners with the foundation, and the organization’s role in the revitalization of Birmingham through civic education. Trentin Williams, a senior at G.W. Carver High School and a member of the Student Changemakers

2/10/16 4:43 PM

24 • Thursday, December 1, 2016



From left: Mary Ann Wade, Yvonne Pope, Noma Jeanne Crews, Elaine Hornberger, Connie Williams, Rochelle Simms, Sandy Ridgeway, June Pryor, Jan Scarborough, Molly Bee Bloetscher, Liz Warren, Jan Service, Diana Meinberg and Barb Kelley.

RSA Medical Boutique

Christmas Sidewalk Sale & Open House December 14, 2016 8:30 am – 6 pm       Come enjoy refreshments, great deals and bring your CPAP by for a quick pressure check and free filter (while supplies last). Call for details 205-871-1977.

Photos special to the Journal

Don’t let your need for oxygen or CPAP keep you home this Christmas season. Reclaim your independence and go where you want to with these great gifts! Z-1 Portable handheld CPAP and “Unplugged” battery powered CPAP for camping and travel off the grid. Starting at $575 and up.

Dressed to Impress

Assistance League Hosts Annual Fashion Show Fundraiser Inogen One G3 Portable Oxygen Concentrator $2615 (reg. $2999) Up to 9 hours of use per charge and FAA approved for air travel.

Respiratory Sleep Associates 2900 Central Avenue, Suite 130 Homewood, Alabama 35209

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Assistance League of Birmingham celebrated its 40th anniversary of serving the greater Birmingham area at its annual Little Black Dress Luncheon. The event, held in early November at a private club in Vestavia Hills, included lunch, a fashion show and holiday shopping. Melinda Thornbury, chairman of the event, said past presidents were recognized and received red roses.  Along with current President Barb Kelley, past presidents attending the event were Molly Bee Bloetscher, Noma Jeanne Crews, Diana Meinberg, Elaine Hornberger, Yvonne Pope, June Pryor, Sandy Ridgeway, Jan Scarborough, Jan Service, Rochelle Simms, Mary Ann Wade, Liz Warren and Connie Williams. The event benefits the Assistance League’s three main charitable endeavors: PrimeTime Treasures, which sells handcrafted items made by Alabama seniors; Operation School Bell, which provides 1,600 elementary school

Beth Bucher, Colette Tatum and Carol Carlson.

children with new school clothes each year; and Operation Literary, which tutors children in reading. ❖

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Argus Club Celebrates 88 Years with Publication of History

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.

Untitled-1 1

home of Mrs. David Crawford on Oct. 5, 1928, for the first meeting of the Argus Club. The club began as a small sewing group that regularly met at the Cobb Lane apartments. It was named Argus after a literary club that one member had attended in Virginia. This year, the club celebrates its 88th anniversary with the publication of a book recounting the organization’s history. The book contains memorabilia that has been collected in a box that has been handed down yearly from one club historian to another. Argus Treasurer Sue Watkins spent the summer compiling the history after the idea was suggested by immediate past President Anne Lamkin. The history was published in time for an Oct. 7 meeting held at Birmingham Country Club. Watkins presented a program recounting club history and its evolution. The meeting was hosted by club

11/14/2016 8:36:30 AM

Photo special to the Journal

This is your aD prOOF from the OvEr ThE MOuNTaiN JOurNal for the December 1, 2016 issue. please contact your sales representative as soon as possible to approve Eighteen women gathered at the your ad or make changes. You may fax approval or changes to 824-1246.

Jane Morris, Sue Watkins and Anne Lamkin.

President Jane Morris, Suzanne Parsons, Margie Williams and Lee Scott. Round tables were dressed in mint-colored cloths and centered with orchids. Morris presented Watkins with a gift in appreciation for her work, and Watkins presented Lamkin, who inspired the project, with a bouquet of roses. Watkins also presented Janis Zeanah with a blue ribbon attached to a package of pencils for providing editorial assistance. Members in attendance at the

meeting included Connie Bishop, Peggy Carlisle, Rebecca Cooper, Lamkin, Tusten Lanning, Suzanne Lucas, Morris, Parsons, Kathie Ramsey, Katy Terry, Watkins, Williams, Bobbie Winfree and Zeanah. Argus met again on Nov. 4 at Mountain Brook Club. Hosting the luncheon were Suzanne Lucas, Claire Bingham, Rebecca Cooper and Anne Heroy. Guest speaker Terry Hicks presented a program on “Notorious Women.” ❖

Photo special to the Journal

From left: Joy Wilkes, Redonda Broom and Dianne Horn

Under the Moonlight Coronets Hosts Annual Fall Dance, Introduces New Members

Broom, Carolyn and Jim Delk, Patti and Wynn Echols, Cindy and Tom Edmonds, Shirley and Roy Evans, Nelle and Clyde Freeman, Clarice and Dr. Sydney Gibbs, Virginia and John Golightly, Linda and Mike Gooldrup, Cheryl and Bob Hardwick, Marsha and Don Hire, Dianne and Richard Horn, Sheila and Bill Horne, Margaret and Dr. Bill Howell, Rusty and Don Kirkpatrick, Nell Larson and Russell Kilgore, Joanne and Art McConnell, Betty and Malcolm Miller, Cile and Gus Miller, Shirley and Howard Palmes, Dena and Wallace Parker, Faye Richards, Evelyn and Bill Ringler, Sally and Dr. Bob Stanley, Cynthia and Steve Tilghman, Phyllis and Roye Tinsley, Karen and Tommy Tucker, Shelley and Steve Watkins, and Joy and Steve Wilkes. ❖

Photo special to the Journal

Coronets Dance Club recently held a fall dance, called Under the Moonlight, in Vestavia Country Club’s ballroom. The evening was planned by dance chairman Carol Powell, who attended with her husband, Phillip. She was assisted by Edna Alderman, who was with her husband, Ken, and Jackie Webb, attending with her husband, Rex. A large group enjoyed cocktails, dinner and dancing to the music of Just Friends orchestra. President Nancy Becker was escorted by Dr. Don Englebert and introduced new club members Glenda Jones with Ron, Cheree Carlton with Eric, Phyllis Davis with Thomas, and Patricia Clay with Norman. Other members in attendance included Redonda and Lowell

Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 25




Mary Riley Ogilvie and Charles Alan Deer were married July 16 at Highlands United Methodist Church. The ceremony was officiated by the Rev. Mikah Hudson and the Rev. Warren Nash​. A reception followed at Mountain Brook Club. The bride is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Morgan Oslin Ogilvie Jr. of Birmingham. The groom is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Richard Alan Deer of Birmingham. Given in marriage by her father, the bride wore an Augusta Jones heavy charmeuse fit and flair gown featuring a sweetheart neckline and buttons to the end of the train. She accessorized her gorgeous gown with a custom Olia Zavozina bolero made from Alencon lace. ​Collier Morris Ogilvie, sister of the bride, of Birmingham was the maid of honor. Bridesmaids were Meredith Beverly Averbuch, Jennifer ​

Jane Locke, Elizabeth Forman Sparrow, Madeline Louise Stivender and Frances Lane Tucker, all of Birmingham; Carlisle Abele Wheeler of Austin, Texas; Kathryn Ann Lamberth of Atlanta; Elizabeth Emory Pitts of New York City; and Mary Morgan Weed of Mobile. Flower girls were Lucy Elizabeth Liles and Claire Miller Liles, cousins of the bride. The groom’s father served as best man. Groomsmen were Christopher Warren Branch, Jack Vincent Brown III, William Joseph Deer, brother of the groom, Ryan Matthew Lichtenstein and Jeffrey Bishop Wienacker, all of Birmingham; Morgan Oslin Ogilvie III, brother of the bride, and Samuel Warren Needham of Atlanta; David Chandler Walston of Charlotte, North Carolina; and Carey Francis Wood of ​ Houston​. Samuel Davis Jeffcoat and Robert Joseph McLaughlin III, both of Birmingham, served as ushers. John Baines Carlisle, cousin of the bride, was the ring bearer.  Amy Melissa Marino of ​Nashville​ and ​Sarah Duffey Sherman of Birmingham​were scripture readers. Mary ​​Margaret Krawczyk of Birmingham and Paul Andrews Liles II of Arlington, Virginia, served as acolytes. M ​ ary Claire Estess, Elizabeth Lacey Jeffcoat, Katherine Tracy Jeffcoat, ​and Abigail Kathryn Rieger, ​ all ​of Birmingham, were program attendants. Music was provided by ​Richard Phillips​, organ,​​Brad Sargent, trumpet, Mark Libby, timpani, and Suzanne Phillips, chimes.  After a honeymoon trip to St Lucia, the couple live in Birmingham.

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1 carat diamond engagement rings starting at $4,995. Front, from left: Susan Farlow, Richard Tubbs and Linda Askins. Back: Ann Lee, Kay Clark, Elizabeth Estess and Joy Kloess.

Seasonal Sashay Cha Chas Host Fall Party

The Cha Cha Dance Club met Nov. 3 for its annual fall party. Ladies mingled among the beautiful furnishings of Richard Tubbs Interiors while enjoying the food and beverages provided by Savoie Catering. During the event, the club introduced new officers, including President Linda Askins, Susan Farlow, Ann Lee, Kay Clark, Elizabeth Estess and Joy Kloess. ❖

Rehab Reality by Jeff Butler

Addiction is a Family Affair.

One of the great joys of Bayshore Retreat is when we help the family heal, not just person with the addiction. This happens more often than not. One classic example is a recent young man who had struggled with his addiction. He ran away from home for several months, then finally admitted to his parents that he couldn’t do it on his own. Even with this revelation he still held resentment toward them for “not understanding”. Meanwhile they had been searching for solutions.They realized that their only choice was to help him with professional help. The ‘tough love’ they had tried only drove him away. Once he arrived at Bayshore he realized just how much his parents cared by him giving him this opporutnity and he took advantage of every minute of counseling, life skills, and activities. We like to say he was fully engaged. It took a couple of weeks for him to be able to talk to his mom in a way that showed her respect. To quote her “I finally have my son back”. Family history and dynamics are difficult sometimes. Bayshore Retreat understands this and while we can’t make everything perfect for every member of the family, it’s rewarding to know that we’ve helped most of our families. It was developed specifically to provide the professional help individuals need and with only six (6) clients at a time we can do that. The young man could have gone to a ‘big box’ rehab, but their choice to provide him with the best was proof of their love and he saw that.

850-687-6831 Destin, FL Healing water front setting Licensed & court approved


26 • Thursday, December 1, 2016


Independent Presbyterian Church Holiday House Tour

Clockwise from above: Laura Vogtle turned the former dining room of her Abingdon Road house into a family room to fit the Vogtles’ casual entertaining style; A lighted tabletop tree and a photo by actor Mason McCulley, a Birmingham native, add pizzazz to a corner of Alli and Florie Vogtle’s sitting room; Art by Meredith Keith, Laura Vogtle’s sister, makes an impact in the back stairwell; The Vogtles’ kitchen, transformed with a minimalist look during the renovation process, has black-and-white soapstone countertops and a professionalquality range; Laura Vogtle; and Striking artwork and carefully chosen accents gives the Vogtle house a chic, clutter-free vibe.

Black, White and Fun All Over Vogtles’ Art-Filled House Is Stylish but Family-Friendly story by donna cornelius • photos by Lee Walls Jr.


aying that a house is filled with its owners’ art collection might conjure mental pictures of a prim and proper place that resembles a museum more than a family home. Laura and Jesse Vogtle do, indeed, have an extensive array of artwork – she’s the owner of Gallery 1930 in English Village and Scene at Pepper Place – but their Mountain Brook house is more fun than formal. The Vogtles’ house at 2647 Abingdon Road is one of the stops on the Independent Presbyterian Church Holiday House Tour, set for Dec. 3 and 4. It’s distinctly different from the other houses on the tour not only for its lively, nontraditional

rooms, its mostly black-and-white palette, and the intriguing displays of art in every room, but for another reason. “We’re the only ones on the tour with children living at home,” Laura Vogtle said with a smile. The two older Vogtle children, Stringer, 21, and Alli, 19, are both University of Alabama students. The three younger children –18-year-old Hays, 16-year-old Rhoades and Florie, who’s 14 – all attend Mountain Brook High School. Laura and Jesse, a Birmingham attorney, lived in Crestline before moving to their large Abingdon Road house about a year ago. “Someone bought our house, and we had to find some-

thing,” Laura said. “With five kids, we needed something large and not too expensive.” The house they chose was built by June and Mike Matsos in 1987. It has three levels and sits on a two-acre wooded lot with a backyard swimming pool and tennis court. “One reason we bought the house was because of the layout,” Laura said. “We could have the boys downstairs, us on the main level and the girls upstairs. And June did an excellent job with the structure of the house.” To fit their family’s lifestyle, the Vogtles renovated and updated the house before moving in.

See Vogtle, page 32


Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 27

Photo special to the Journal


IPC Chairs: From left: Rev. Elizabeth Goodrich, IPC associate pastor; Sarah Duggan, committee chair; Ann Walthall, tour chair; Paige Albright, committee chair; and Jennifer Cope, committee chair.

Birmingham’s Grand Tour Independent Presbyterian’s 67th Annual Event Features Four Festive Houses

By Donna Cornelius Most merchants start the holiday merrymaking early, with gifts and garlands filling store aisles well before Thanksgiving. But for many Birmingham residents, the Independent Presbyterian Church’s Holiday House Tour signals the official start of the season. The IPC tour has become a seasonal tradition; this is the tour’s 67th year. Those who attend year after year see houses decked out in holiday finery. The church opens its doors, too, for Christmas tea. The tour is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Dec. 10 and from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 11. Read more about the home of Laura and Jesse Vogtle, one of the houses open this year, nearby. Other homes on the tour include:

house was built by Golden Flake founder Leo Bashinsky. The couple bought the house from the Johnston family, which lived there for 67 years. Tour-goers will see sunny rooms with a palette of blue, green and white as well as a collection of family heirlooms, flea market finds with updated upholstery, and fine art photos taken by David Hillegas on his world travels. Original bookcases in the stair hall hold a collection of taxidermal examples, hunted on safari by David’s late grandmother. Heather Hillegas, a longtime magazine photo stylist and former Southern Living style director, recently transformed the garage into her design and art studio.

James F. Carter, 3731 Montrose Road

When Carter, an architect, bought a Crestline Village cottage in 2000, he planned to tear it down and rebuild. He started the project 13 years later, building a graceful Georgian house with whitewashed brick and a roof made from reclaimed slate. His longtime friend designer Jane Hoke Bynum helped with the interiors, which hold his extensive collections of antiques and books. Mr. and Mrs. David Hillegas, 4445 Clairmont Road

A clapboard Colonial known as Pineapple House drew decorator Heather Chadduck Hillegas and her husband, photographer David Hillegas, to Forest Park in 2012. Originally known as Potato Hill, the

Mr. and Mrs. Robert Spotswood, 2749 Abingdon Road

The Evans Dunn family lived in this house, one of the first in Birmingham’s Abingdon section, for more than 50 years. Mrs. Dunn was an avid gardener, and much of her horticultural legacy still remains. The house, built in 1928, is in the Shingle style, an American architectural style made popular by the rise of the New England school of architecture.  Architect Bobby McAlpine in the late 1990s converted a family room addition into a striking kitchen. After a fire destroyed the house’s art studio

and garage in 2013, the space was remodeled into a new art studio. A new side entrance, garage, laundry room and two master bathrooms also were added. Rosalie Holman of RGH Garden and Design designed the driveway, enhanced the entrances and assisted the homeowners in redesigning and remodeling the pool house into a more usable space. Independent Presbyterian Church, 3100 Highland Ave.

The church, founded in 1915, was designed by Warren, Knight and To: William Paige Davis architect Warren. IPC From: Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 members will decorateOver theThe sanctuary and parlor for the tour. While it’s fun for tour-goers Date: October to see the houses and the church, the event has a charitable purpose, too. This is your aD PrOOF from the OvEr THE MOuNTaiN JOurNal for the Proceeds support three IPC missions: November 3rd, 2016 issue. Please fax approval or changes to 824-1246. the Children’s Fresh Air Farm, Open Door Ministry and Stair reading proPlease make sure all information is correct, gram. The Children’s Fresh Air Farm has including address and phone number! a summer learning program for underserved children in the Birmingham area. The six-week program includes if we have not heard from you by 5 pm of the Friday before the press date, classroom instruction and activities your ad will run as is. We print the paper Monday. such as drama, science and swimThank you for your prompt attention. ming. IPC has operated the farm since 1923. The church’s new Open Door Ministry, which started in August, provides adults in Birmingham’s Everyone can appreciate a Kingston and North Avondale comthorough clean from The Maids. munities with free GED, basic literacy and English as a second language classes. The ministry’s aim is to help participants achieve their goals of Proudly keeping homes cleaner education, employment and family and healthier since 1987 stability. Stair, founded in 2000, aims to improve second-graders’ reading skills and self-esteem. Volunteers work closely with Hayes K-8 School students. This year, 56 second-graders graduated from the program with reading gains on an average of 86 percent. Holiday House Tour tickets are $30 and available at, at the church’s reception desk and at the church and at each Referred for a reason. AV house on tour days. ❖


hustle and bustle



28 • Thursday, December 1, 2016



samford legacy league’s 2016 christmas home tour

Large windows throughout the 94-year-old home of Joy and Price Kloess offer breathtaking views of the city. Cover photo, staggered caramel gold candles, classic ribbon, greenery and seeded eucalyptus add holiday elegance to Kloess’ living room. The house is one of five featured on Samford Legacy League’s Christmas Home Tour on Dec. 8.

Window Displays

ARC Realty Presents Samford Legacy League’s Christmas Home Tour Vestavia Country Club golf course. Down the hall, the bedroom designed for their grandchildren is reminiscent of a train’s sleeper car, with four private nooks that each have a twin bed with curtains and a light for reading or watching movies before bedtime.

Visitors can tour five homes showcasing unique architectural elements and festive seasonal decor during Samford Legacy League’s Christmas Home Tour on Dec. 8. Proceeds from the sixth annual tour and Holiday Gift Market will help fund scholarships for students with significant financial need and challenging circumstances, including disability or death of a parent or sibling, foster care and inner-city violence. The homes will be open for tours from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Dec. 8. Homes may be toured in any order. Tickets are $25 through Dec. 6 at or $30 at the door of featured homes during tour hours. More information about the event, sponsored by ARC Realty, is available on the website or by calling 726-2807. Houses on this year’s tour are:

Joy and Price Kloess, 2862 Stratford Road South, Birmingham

The Stratford Road home of Joy

and Price Kloess offers a panoramic view of the city. Built in 1924 by W.B. Hillhouse, the home is “a brick bungalow with a formal twist,” as Joy Kloess described it. The couple had the kitchen renovated in 2015 by Cindy Cantley of Cantley & Company. The house is decorated for Christmas with four-foot magnolia wreaths sprayed gold and hung inside and outside the expansive dining room window. Lots of greenery, clas-

sic ribbon, seeded eucalyptus and staggered caramel-gold candles add elegance throughout the home, and the couple displays a large ceramic Christmas tree, made for Price Kloess by a patient during his residency in San Antonio. Allison Morgan, 3008 North Woodridge Road, Mountain Brook

The 62-year-old home of Allison

Denise and Ronnie Alvarez, 2405 Chestnut Road, Vestavia Hills

Carolyn and John Tate, 3248 East Briarcliff Circle, Mountain Brook

Situated not far from the Morgan home on the high side of East Briarcliff Circle, Carolyn and John Tate’s home was built in 1957. Artwork and photographs throughout the house reflect the family’s interests. In the great room hangs a painting Carolyn Tate purchased for

Photos special to the Journal

The new brick home, built by Cotton Construction, is open and spacious. Appointments were influenced by the Alvarezes’ New Orleans roots, including a brick backsplash in the kitchen and floor in the laundry area and pecky cypress wood installed on the ceilings. The kitchen includes a T-shaped island and the back porch features an outdoor fireplace and large areas for gathering. The upstairs master bedroom offers a view of the

Morgan, renovated three times, has an open floor plan and several outdoor entertaining areas. The home features an alfresco dining area, a koi pond by the den and a swimming pool. A second koi pond, bubbling fountain and private sitting area are nestled in a walled garden just off the master bedroom. The master bath’s unconventional design includes an island with sinks on facing sides and a large two-sided mirror suspended above. The home is decorated with items collected during Morgan’s years living abroad, including an assortment of exotic bronzes, antique hand weapons and wood carvings. A hand-carved olive wood Nativity from Bethlehem marks the holiday season, and an Egyptian brass hammering depicting Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus graces the mantle. A 14-foot lighted Christmas tree stands in the living room. Also on display are gingerbread houses made by her grandchildren.

The inspiring nativity in the foyer of the Samford President’s Home tells the story of Christmas.

See samford, page 32



Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 29

Christmas Home Tour Benefits Needy Students

Photo special to the Journal

Each Pennoyer Newman casting is handcrafted in New York City.

Samford Legacy League Christmas Home Tour Committee: Front row, from left: Kathryn Woodruff, Dianne Booth, Lisbeth Cease, Mary Ann Hollingshead and Jeanna Westmoreland. Second row: Ginger Brown, Phyllis Crocker and Allison Strickland. Third row: Pam Matthews, Lynn Parrish, Sharon Smith and Suzanne Page. Not pictured: Paige Acker, Kathleen Busbee, Terre Currey and Vicki Everett. Proceeds from the sixth annual tour and Holiday Gift Market (right) will help fund scholarships for students with significant financial need and challenging circumstances, including disability or death of a parent or sibling, foster care and inner-city violence.

Great holiday Gift ideas for everyone on your list!

30 • Thursday, December 1, 2016


Pride and responsibility drive us to be the best in everything we do.

Joseph Braswell

As a life-long Over-the-Mountain resident and a third generation working at Guin, I feel great pride and responsibility in carrying on the legacy of honesty and hard work that my grandfather began over 55 years ago. Family is very important to us, and we treat our customers with the same care and respect as members of our own family. It would be a privilege to serve you.


Mt. Laurel Christmas Southern Living Idea House Dresses up for The Holidays

Serving the Birmingham Area Since 1958


Member of the Mountain Brook Chamber of Commerce

205-595-4846 •


10 Nolen Street, Mt Laurel.

By June Mathews

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas and, like thousands of other homes in the Birmingham area, the 2016 Southern Living Idea House has been dressed to celebrate the season in festive style. roman “The Southern Living team is putbrantley ting it together, and the decorating art & antiques will mainly concentrate in the foyer and first floor,” said Julianna Vance, Mt Laurel’s marketing and commuWith a collection of hand nity relations manager. picked one of a kind gifts The house at 10 Nolen Street in Mt Laurel, which is Southern Living’s and large selection of 50th Anniversary Idea House, was "small gifts," we have designed by Bill Ingram Architect and features the work of interior designers something for everyone Mark D. Sikes, Margaret Kirkland, on your list. Ashley Gilbreath, Lauren Leiss and Amy Berry. The Idea House is featured in 205.460.1224 Southern Living’s Christmas at Home Open Tues-Sat 10:30-5:00 pm edition, which is on newsstands now. 2790 BM Montgomery Street By the time the house closes to the public in mid-December, it’s estimated that more than 20,000 people will have visited during the six months it was open to the public. “The Idea House has drawn visitors from all over the country,” said Vance, “and we hope that even if you’ve seen it before, that you’ll tour it again to see the Christmas decorations.” To: Linda The Idea House was dressed in its Christmas finery after Thanksgiving From: Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 and reopened Nov. 30. It will be FAX: 205-824-1246 open for touring Wednesdays through Date: Dec. This is your ad proof from the over the mountain Journal for theSaturdays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sundays noon to 4 p.m. until Dec. 18. dec. 1 2016 issue. Please fax approval or changes to 824-1246. Tickets are $15 per person; children 12 and under can enter free. please make sure all information is correct, including Tickets are available at the door. Parking is available on the street. ❖ 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.





Photos special to the Journal

Mention this ad to receive a free diagnostic service call.

Holiday decorating in the 2016 Southern Living Idea House will mainly concentrate in the foyer and first floor.

Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 31



‘I want everyone to realize everything around us is designed by someone, whether it is a building, park, or the car you drive.’

Holiday Open House Dec. 9th — Dec. 10th Designer Andrea Morriss will sell her one of a kind jewelry made of old parts and pieces

Designs on Christmas

Limited-Edition Ornaments Depict Birmingham Landmarks




Santa has a sleigh full of surprises. Our one-of -a kind collection of rugs, silver, jewelry, furniture, glassware, and more qualify us as an official Santa’s Helper. Rooms and rooms of antiques, curiosities and fun.

Be Unique, Give an Antique. 2424 7th Ave. So.

Photos special to the Journal

The Alabama Center for Architecture has produced four limited edition Christmas ornaments and prints to celebrate historical landmarks in Birmingham. The center commissioned local artists, architects and landscape architects to paint their interpretations of Birmingham landmarks with watercolors. The landmarks and artists are: Sloss Furnaces, Joey Longoria; Vulcan Park & Museum, Adrienne Retief; Railroad Park, architect Rebecca Whitlow; and the Rotary Trail, landscape architect Jane Reed Ross. “The goal of this fundraiser, of course besides to raise money for our programs and scholarships, is to promote awareness of our landmarks and encourage people to visit them, support and promote local artists, and promote the architectural and design profession,” Rhea Williams, center executive director, said in a press release. “I want everyone to realize everything around us is designed by someone, whether it is a building, park, or the car you drive.” A portion of each sale also will be donated to the corresponding landmark. Ornaments fbcalparadeofhomesad.pdf are available for $28.50 and prints 1are available 6/5/16 for $30 from through Dec. 31. Contact the center at 322-4386 with any questions. —Virginia Martin

Major credit cards accepted The Alabama Center for Architecture commissioned local artists, architects and landscape architects to 8:40 PM paint their interpretations of Birmingham landmarks with watercolors.

Mon-Sat 10-5


Dealer Spaces Available

To: From: Date: C








Call us “Hanna Claus”

323-6014 Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 FAX: 205-824-1246 November 2016 This is your AD PrOOF from the OvEr THE MOuNT Dec. 1 2016 issue. Please fax approval or chan

Please make sure all information including address and phone Please initial and fax back within 24

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

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32 • Thursday, December 1, 2016




Merry Christmas To All!

From page 26

“We moved to our lake house in Pell City while most of the work was going on,” Laura said. “We refinished the floors. All the floors on the main level are stained black, and the floors upstairs are painted white.” All that work was done by David Burch with Alabama Hardwood Floors, she said. Every wall in the house, including the trim, was painted the same color: white. “I had white walls in our old house,” Laura said. “I guess I would say I love change – my houses are never finished but constantly chang2700 19th Place South • Homewood • 871-9779 ing. White walls enable me to change Tue.-Fri. 10:30-5:30 • Sat. 11:00-4:30 up easily.” The Vogtles also redid the bathrooms and changed out the plumbing fixtures, Laura said. On the house’s main level are several gathering places, the master suite and the kitchen. Laura removed the dark paneling from a former study to create a light-filled, cheerful spot that she calls her room. A painting by Alabama-born artist Nall hangs in this room. The house’s big kitchen was gutted, Laura said. Soapstone countertops are in her favorite blackand-white combination. One clever addition is a square table with fabriccovered benches on rollers to provide flexible seating for her large family and any guests. To: Tricia While Laura loves the spacious From: Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 kitchen, she’s equally fond of the FAX: 205-824-1246 adjacent “pantry kitchen.” In its preDate: Nov. vious life, the space was a laundry room and office. This is your AD PrOOF from the OvEr THE MOuNTAiN JOurNAl for the “All my kids cook and fix their Ask About Our Special Savings Event Dec. 1, 2016 issue. Please fax approval or changes to 824-1246.own food here,” Laura said. “Hays cooks almost every night. I like keeping the mess confined.” 1831 29th Ave. S., Homewood • 871-9880 • Kathy Owens, CKD, President The unfinished basement downstairs was turned into the boys’ quarPlease initial and fax back within 24 hours. ters. The Vogtles took out the existing 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. drop ceiling and painted the exposed Thank you for your prompt attention. parts black. They also stained the concrete floor. In addition to their sons’ bedrooms, the basement has a kitchenette, pool table, a TV room with a

make sure all information is correct, Kathy’Please s Designer Kitchens, Inc. including address and phone number!

samford, From page 28

her father as a reminder of the time she spent in Paris as a student. Other oil paintings throughout the residence reveal the family’s great love of sailing, and numerous photographs of horses are on their walls and tabletops. During the holidays, the Tates set out Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” Byers’ Choice figurines accumulated through the years.

Journal photo by Lee Walls Jr.

- from -

Lively accents of green and gold brighten up the master bedroom.

row of comfy lounge chairs, a room for hunting gear and a sauna. Upstairs belongs to daughters Alli and Florie. Both girls have distinctly different bedrooms and a posh sitting room with a sectional sofa and lots of fun accents. Tour-goers should take their time and try not to miss the paintings, photos and other art pieces on every level of the house. All the artwork in the house is by artists who exhibit in Laura’s galleries. Laura and her mother, Kathryn Keith, owned Laura Kathryn, a clothing store in Crestline Village, for 20 years. “We sold the clothing store, and I opened Gallery 1930 about five years ago,” Laura said. “My sister was looking for a place to exhibit.” Her sister is artist Meredith Keith, whose work is prominently represented in the Vogtles’ home. One of Keith’s pieces, which hangs in the foyer, is a large diptych of a Native American. It’s a tribute to a similar painting by Andy Warhol. “Upstairs, one of my favorite newer pieces is by Sarah Heath,” Laura said “We have her work at Gallery 1930. It’s a wall sculpture

that’s a lighted box with Mylar birds.” Laura said other favorite pieces are a fabric wall hanging by Celeste Pfau and Rebecca Tully Fulmer’s photographs with mirrors and Plexiglas. A black-and-white photo hand-painted with watercolors by actor Mason McCulley, who’s from Birmingham, hangs in the girls’ sitting room. Laura has several pieces by Linda Cooper, a Studio by the Tracks artist who also exhibits with Gallery 1930. Laura opened Scene at Birmingham’s Pepper Place earlier this year. “It’s an event space,” she said. “We host pop-up shows, art shows, parties and dinners.” The Vogtles’ family-friendly, artfilled house combines style, sophistication and playfulness, as evidenced by one of its residents: a pet mini-pig. Tallulah, like her family’s house, is mostly black and white. “The kids wanted a pig,” Laura said. “We got her from Piggy Patch Farm in Cleveland, Alabama. She’s a little over a year old now.” Tallulah, who Laura said is more into eating than into snuggling up on the couch, will be on hand to greet tour-goers – from the backyard. ❖

tions displayed throughout the home. Elegantly trimmed Christmas trees stand in many of the 14 rooms. More than 100 nutcrackers, ranging from a few inches to a few feet tall, can be seen on bookshelves and hanging on the boughs of a large Christmas tree. While touring the Samford President’s Home, guests may visit

the Holiday Gift Market, returning for its second year. The market offers a selection of jewelry, pottery, art, children’s items, clothing, accessories and home items. Legacy League volunteers also will be serving seasonal hors d’oeuvres and holiday treats donated by local businesses and League members. ❖

Jeanna and Andy Westmoreland, Samford President’s Home, 1994 Shades Crest Road, Vestavia Hills.

The Samford President’s Home sits atop Shades Mountain in Vestavia Hills. After the university acquired the home in 2007, a major renovation included adding a ballroom overlooking Samford’s campus. Several inspirational nativity scenes from around the world are among the holiday collec-

Denise and Ronnie Alvarez’s new home overlooks the 13th tee of Vestavia Country Club’s golf course.



Merry Munchies You’ll find festive food and more at the Junior League’s Market Noel PAGE 34

Cooking the Books

Not Just for the Birds: Wildlife Center Hosts Holiday Craft and Bake Sale

Find lots of food to serve at home or give as gifts at the Alabama Wildlife Center’s Holiday Craft and Bake Sale on Dec. 3. The sale is from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Veterans Park in Hoover. Among the offerings are homemade jams, jellies, preserves, candies and baked goods, plus smoked Culinary Community ham and turkey breasts. Frozen News and casseroles include broccoli and Events rice, mac and cheese, sweet potato, and sausage grits. Holiday-themed crafts and ornaments, handmade jewelry and birdhouses and feeders will be for sale, too. Those who attend can meet Santa, have free refreshments and meet glove-trained AWC Education Birds up close. For more information, visit

Readers Share Recipes through Homewood Library’s Let’s Dish Club By Donna Cornelius

An Invitation to Breakfast: Crisis Center Event Is at Vestavia Hills UMC

The Birmingham Crisis Center will host its Holiday Breakfast at 7 a.m. Dec. 8 at Vestavia Hills United Methodist Church. The center is inviting people from Central Alabama communities to the event to learn more about its mission and services. The breakfast is free and open to the public.

Journal photo by Jordan Wald

“Eating and reading are two pleasures that combine admirably,” C.S. Lewis said. The famous writer would have felt right at home at the Homewood Public Library, where food is the focus of several classes, special events – and a new club. Judith Wright, the teen librarian, and Charity Huter, an adult services technician at the library, have been sharing recipes with each other for several years. Now, they’ve invited other food lovers to do the same through the library’s Let’s Dish Recipe Club. The club meets at 6:30 on the first Thursday of every month in the library’s boardroom. Those who attend bring a dish and its recipe. “We’ll make copies of the recipes for everyone to take home,” Wright said. Huter said the two friends’ original idea was a cookbook club. Members of these types of clubs usually choose a cookbook and then bring a dish made from a recipe in the book. But because they were afraid the library wouldn’t have enough copies of any one book for all the club members, they decided on a recipe club with a different theme each month. “Our first meeting was in October, so we did a tailgate theme,” Huter said. “In November, we did a feast of side dishes.” The group’s Dec. 1 meeting has a holidayappropriate theme: Christmas cookies. The January meeting will focus on healthy favorites to start off the New Year. In February, members will be asked to bring sweet treats. Wright said those who attend don’t need to be expert cooks. “We have men and women of all ages and all experience levels,” she said. The meetings have no formal programs but always include lively discussions, exchanges of information, a display of cookbooks from the library that might inspire members for the next month’s theme and, of course, eating. “Even if we have repeats of dishes, it’s fun to see how people do things differently,” Wright said. “No one has the same recipe for sweet potato casserole or dressing. It can be based on where you’re from or how you were raised.” One member’s contribution to the October meeting was Mexican street corn.

Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 33

let’s dish: Charity Huter, an adult services technician and Judith Wright, the teen librarian at Homewood Public Library, have been sharing recipes with each other for several years.

“That’s something I wouldn’t have thought of for a tailgate,” Wright said. The recipe club isn’t the library’s only activity for foodies. Bartender Clair McLafferty leads a series of cocktail classes; the last class drew more than 70 people, Wright said. Cozy Cocktails are on the program for the next class, set for Jan. 13 at 6:30 p.m. McLafferty will talk about hot cocktails for cold winter nights, and those who attend can bring their own mugs and enter them into a “most outlandish mug” contest. Tickets go on sale Dec. 13 at Although there’s no charge for the recipe club, tickets to the cocktail classes are $10. Each ticket includes two adult beverages and light refreshments. While the recipe club and cocktail classes are for adults, the library also encourages young chefs. “Charity and I came up with a cookie dough

class for teens,” Wright said. “They could personalize the dough and then take it home and bake it.” The library also has hosted a smoothie challenge for teens and fun competitions called Food Wars. “For one event, they all got ramen noodles, which we cooked for them, and then added their own ingredients,” Wright said. “We do cupcake wars, too.” Wright didn’t cook as a child or teenager, although her grandmother is a “really great cook,” she said. “Now, I love to feed people,” she said. Huter also used to be a novice in the kitchen. “I didn’t know anything about cooking,” she said. “I got married and had my first child, and the only thing I could cook was spaghetti with sauce from a jar.”

See let’s dish, page 36

p i g g l y w i g g l y ®

Holiday Shopping Made Simple! For a perfect fit everytime, give a Piggly WIggly Gift Card. Available in any amount you choose. The Piggly Wiggly Gift Card can be used throughout the store, so its perfect for everyone! Holiday Shopping Made Simple at your Piggly Wiggly!

Merry Mornings: Dine with Santa at McWane Center, Birmingham Zoo

Two of Birmingham’s most popular attractions will host Breakfast with Santa events this month. The McWane Science Center’s Jingle Bell Breakfast, set for 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Dec. 10, includes a hot breakfast with Mr. and Mrs. Claus, holiday crafts, a special showing of “Santa vs. the Snowman” in the IMAX Dome, and more festive activities. Tickets are $25 for adults and $20 for kids; McWane members get $2 off. Tickets include same-day admission to the museum after the movie. Reservations are required; call 714-8414. For more information, visit The Birmingham Zoo has two Breakfast with Santa events, one at 8 a.m. and one at 9:30 a.m., on Dec. 17. Those who attend will get a scrambled egg and sausage breakfast with orange juice or coffee at the Kudzoo Cafe, a special treat and a visit from St. Nick.

See food news, page 36

34 • Thursday, December 1, 2016



Merry Munchies

You’ll Find Festive Food and More at the Junior League’s Market Noel By Donna Cornelius

Viridian offers all the charm of a vintage neighborhood with the latest energy-efficient green homebuilding technologies. These authentic, one-of-a-kind homes are tucked in the woods in a unique gated community off Tyler Road, with prices starting in the $600s. Two lush parks and an abundance of green space provide privacy and a sense of history for this significant property. (205) 365-4344

Jennifer Lee said most Market Noel shoppers buy a jar (or several) of pepper jelly for themselves and also purchase jellies for gifts. organization’s members. Julia Meyers is this year’s event chairwoman, and Sally McKay is the chairwomanelect. “There are eight people on the steering committee and about 60 on the total Market Noel committee,” Meyers said. The market had been held at the Cahaba Grand since 2009 but this year has a new home at the BJCC. “We’re really excited about that,” Meyers said. “We were bursting at the seams at the old location and weren’t able to add more merchants. This year, we’ll have 20 more.” Vendors, who apply online to sell at the market, are carefully chosen. “Many come year after year,” Meyers said. “Lots of Junior Leagues have these types of shows, and we’ve been lucky enough to have good word of mouth for our show. We had about 220 vendors apply and accepted about half. We try not to have duplications among our vendors.” In addition to Jennifer’s Kitchen, other food-centric sellers at Market Noel will be Ala Carte Alice, Alabama Sweet Tea Company, All Natural Dips, BamaWise, Bare Naked Noodles, Country Kettle Fudge, Doux South Specialties, Emily’s Heirloom Pound Cakes, Holiday Fried Pecans, Jose Madrid Salsa, KimsKandies, Made in the Deep South, Miss Ginny’s English Toffee,

Photos special tothe Journal

Vestavia’s Premiere Green Home Community

Junior League of Birmingham’s Market Noel is a taste of the holiday season – and not just figuratively. The annual fundraiser, which celebrated its 25th anniversary last year, has plenty of shopping opportunities for those looking to buy gifts for others or treats for themselves. Among the most popular vendors are those featuring food. Jennifer’s Kitchen’s green and black booth has been a fixture at Market Noel for several years. Owner Jennifer Lee will be returning with her popular pepper jellies to this year’s event, set for Nov. 30-Dec. 3 at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex. “Markets like this are where I get to see people face to face, talk to my customers and see what they’ve created with my pepper jelly,” said Lee, who lives in Homewood. “You get hugs and hear people saying, ‘I served this to Aunt So-and-so,’ and ‘It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without your pepper jelly.’” Market Noel is one of JLB’s top fundraisers and one that requires quite a bit of time and effort from the

Jennifer’s Kitchen’s green and black booth has been a fixture at Market Noel for several years. Owner Jennifer Lee will be returning with her popular pepper jellies to this year’s event, set for Nov. 30-Dec. 3 at the BirminghamJefferson Convention Complex.

Nothing Bundt Cakes, Organically Yours, Stone Hollow Creamery, Treats So Sweet and Two Sisters Olive and Grape. Jennifer Lee said most Market Noel shoppers buy a jar (or several) of pepper jelly for themselves and also purchase jellies for gifts. She’ll have lots of options for gift-giving, including a duo of her best sellers: Confetti, a traditional pepper jelly named by her daughter because, she said, it looks like “a party on a plate,” and Holiday, made with cran-

berries and pecans. She said Confetti is No. 1 among her products for most of the year but gets booted from the top spot by Holiday during the Thanksgiving and Christmas season. Those two flavors also are used in her website’s most popular recipe: Pepper Jelly Cheesecake. Instructions for making the savory cheesecake (and other recipes) are on the company’s website, “We give bulk discounts that you can only get at the show,” Lee said.

Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 35



So that people find out more about the organization, Market Noel will have a special area where members can share information and answer questions about JLB. The organization’s Yummy Truck, a mobile teach-

Journal photo by Maury Wald

This year’s event will include pop-up shops – vendors who set up just for one day of the event. Among these are Weezie’s Candy Emporium in Homewood, which will be at Market Noel on Friday, and Honey Baby Bakery, which will be there Saturday. Junior League of Birmingham members Sally McKay, left, and Julia Meyers are heading up this year’s Market Noel.

Like other Market Noel food vendors, Jennifer’s Kitchen will serve samples so that customers can try before they buy. “We have one girl who only handles samples,” she said. “We have samples of every jelly by itself and over cream cheese, and we have an oven where we bake the cheesecakes all day.” Another food booth where shoppers are likely to gather is BamaWise, a grocery distributor that works mostly with Alabama vendors. “We have cheese straws, chutneys, pickles, barbecue sauce and even perishables like cheeses and sausages,” owner Jeff Gentry said. “We help our vendors with packaging and ‘coach them up.’ At Market Noel, we’ll have plenty of food to sample, and we’ll also have gift trays.” Meyers said this year’s event will include pop-up shops – vendors who set up just for one day of the event. Among these are Weezie’s Candy Emporium in Homewood, which will be at Market Noel on Friday, and Honey Baby Bakery, which will be there Saturday. The Homewood bakery is owned by Elise Mayfield, a Birmingham native who appeared on Fox’s MasterChef TV series. Special events will be a highlight of the fundraiser, Meyers said. Preview Noel from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Nov. 30 has private shopping, a silent auction and a new feature just for the guys. “We’ve created a man cave with a bourbon toss,” Meyers said. “It’s like a ring toss, but you win bourbon. We also have a beer garden featuring Good People Brewing Co. beer and regional beers.” Market Bliss, which will be from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Dec. 2, is a girls’ night out event, Meyers said. Tonya Jones Salon will have a beauty bar offering blowouts, manicures, pedicures and other services. Ticket holders also can enter to win a laser treatment package from Plastic Surgery Specialists, a monogram pendant from Diamonds Direct and other prizes.

Rock the Runway – Couture for a Cause starts at 10:30 a.m. Dec. 3. Lily Pulitzer teams up with Market Noel to host a fashion show with JLB board members and their children modeling in a “Mommy and Me” segment. Another segment, which Meyers said highlights Magic Moments, will have teen models wearing clothes from Market Noel vendors. Designer Heidi Elnora will emcee the entire show. While Market Noel offers plenty of fun, Meyers doesn’t want those who attend to forget that they’re supporting great causes. JLB has about 2,500 members who work year-round to benefit their community. “I think people in Birmingham know about Junior League but may not know what we do,” she said.

ing kitchen, also will be on site. The truck goes to Birmingham schools and is manned by volunteers who make easy, healthy recipes. For Market Noel hours and to buy tickets to the show and to special events, visit Tickets also will be available at the door. ❖

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


CELEBRATE TRADITION, UNTRADITIONALLY. AT THE GR AND BOHEMIAN HOTEL MOUNTAIN BROOK Enjoy exceptional cuisine, share a toast with a twist and find inspiration around every corner.

CHRISTMAS DAY Brunch Grand Buffet at Habitat Feed & Social 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. $59 per guest • $26 children 5-12 • Free for children under 5

NEW YEAR’S EVE New Year’s Eve Dinner at Habitat Feed & Social 6 p.m. - 10 p.m.

Babara Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 FAX: 205-824-1246 Date: Nov. Located at the top of ShadeS Mountain on hwy 31,

Lounge Party with Live DJ Starting at 10 p.m. Complimentary admission for restaurant guests.

To: From:

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OUR HOLIDAY CELEBRATIONS, CALL 844.804.4148 BiStro V offerS one of the fineSt cuLinary experienceS in BirMinghaM! 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. Open Monday-Saturday 11am-2pm & 5pm-9pm 521 Montgomery Hwy, Vestavia Hills, AL 35216 • (205) 823-1505

2655 Lane Park Road | Mountain Brook, Alabama

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.


36 • Thursday, December 1, 2016


let’s dish, From page 33

including Jessie’s Place, shelter for women & children

Her culinary education took off when she was in her 20s and became the major cook at Pelham High School. “There were some older ladies from different cultures, and they taught me


Delicious Stuff from Let’s Dish

$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

Journal photos by Donna Cornelius

Judith Wright and Charity Huter shared some of their favorite recipes, which should make tasty additions to any holiday menu.


Blue Devil Cheese and Bacon Dip Charity Huter Ingredients: 1 tub of whipped cream cheese ¾ cup crumbled blue cheese ¾ cup sour cream 2 tablespoons mayonnaise (Huter uses Hellman’s) 1 teaspoon prepared horseradish 2 tablespoons minced onion (Huter uses dried onion) 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning Dash of hot sauce 6 slices bacon, cooked until crisp

Above, Cranberry, White Chocolate Chip Nutella Cookies. Below, Roasted Purple Potatoes with Garlic and Parm.

Ingredients: 1 package of frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained 1 can chopped artichoke hearts 1 small onion, chopped 2 tablespoons butter 1 cup mayonnaise 1 cup parmesan cheese 1 to 2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese 8 ounces cream cheese, softened A few dashes of Worcestershire sauce A few dashes of Tabasco hot sauce Salt and pepper to taste Instructions: Saute butter and onion in a saucepan until the onions are soft. Add spinach (pat it first with a paper towel to remove all excess water). Saute for two minutes. Add remaining ingredients. Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes.

Quick Rosemary Rice Taste of Home Ingredients: 2 cups chicken broth 2 garlic cloves, minced 1 cup uncooked long grain rice ½ teaspoon salt 1 medium onion, chopped 1 small carrot, shredded ½ to 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel 1 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed Instructions: Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Makes 4 to 6 servings.

Roasted Purple Potatoes with Garlic and Parm Ingredients: 1½ pounds of baby purple potatoes,

food news, From page 33

Richie Watts of Good eaRth PotteRy Will be heRe intRoducinG neW PatteRns: MallaRd, GRey Goose, and tauPe. satuRday, deceMbeR 10 11 a.M. to 4 P.M. 2402 montevallo rd mountain Brook village


cut in half 2 teaspoons olive oil 6 garlic cloves, smashed 2 tablespoons finely grated parmesan cheese Salt and pepper to taste Chopped parsley Instructions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Combine all ingredients except parsley. Place on a sheet pan and bake until the potatoes are crispy outside and soft inside, about 45 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley before serving.

Cranberry, White Chocolate Chip Nutella Cookies Ingredients: 2 sticks butter, softened ½ cup Nutella 1 cup packed light brown sugar ½ cup sugar 1 teaspoon baking soda 2 eggs 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract 3 cups all-purpose flour 1 (12-ounce) bag white chocolate chips, divided 1 (5-ounce) bag dried cranberries, divided

Instructions: Combine all ingredients except bacon in a food processor. Pulse until smooth. Add half of the bacon, and pulse until blended. Add remaining crumbled bacon and stir. Cover and refrigerate at least one hour or overnight. Serve with apples or wheat crackers.

Spinach Artichoke Dip Judith Wright

Good eaRth PotteRy siGninG event!

Huter said her favorites are church cookbooks. “I also devour anything by Martha Stewart,” she said. For more information about the Let’s Dish Recipe Club, visit www. com You can send an email to jwright@bham.lib. to be put on the club’s list. ❖

how to make things from scratch, how to add flavors,” Huter said. “It was hard to come home and cook for three people after cooking for 1,600.” Wright said she loves recipes from Taste of Home magazine. “They’re made with ingredients you have and ingredients you know – and there are lots of photos,” she said.

Tickets for zoo members are $25 for adults and $20 for ages 2-12. Tickets for nonmembers are $30 for adults and $25 for ages 2-12. Children under age 2 are admitted free but must have tickets. All tickets include zoo admission and an unlimited ride wristband for the day. For more information, visit

Jonesing for Sweet Treats? Cookie Fix Opening in Downtown Homewood

Cookie Fix, a small batch gourmet cookie shop, is closing

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, combine butter and Nutella and mix until creamy. Add light brown sugar, sugar and baking soda; continue to beat until combined. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Add vanilla and continue to mix until thoroughly combined. Add flour in batches, beating each batch until combined. (Stir in the last batch of flour if necessary.) Stir in half of the white chocolate chips and half of the dried cranberries. Drop batter by rounded spoonsful 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until edges are just browned. Cool on cookie sheets for 2 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack. As the cookies cool, decorate them with the remaining white chocolate chips and dried cranberries. Cool cookies completely. Makes 6 dozen cookies. ❖

in on an opening date for its new store at 2854 18th Street in Homewood, three doors up from Urban Cookhouse. Amy Jason of Vestavia Hills will be mixing up dozens of varieties of cookies that can be bought freshly baked or as frozen dough to go. Seasonal desserts, bread pudding batters, sauces, bars, brownies and other sweet treats will be offered, as well as milk, soda, coffee and kitchen utensils to be used in the preparation of the cookies and recipes from the shop. Cookie tins will be available for gift giving during the holidays and year-round, according to a release from the company. To keep track of when Cookie Fix will be opening, its store hours and menu, find it on Instagram at cookie_fix and on Facebook at Cookie Fix Homewood. ❖

OVER THE MOUNTAIN Journal • december 1, 2016 • Page 37

Holiday Gift Guide part 2

on the off chance you didn’t find the perfect gift in our last issue ...

The signature scent of the new B. Prince is the Bitter Orange scent by Agraria, which means “beautiful flowers growing in the fields.” Available in candles, diffusers and potpourri. Priced from $30-$70. B.Prince, 871-1965.

Yellow gold and platinum triangle ring with diamonds, sapphires andemeralds. Signed Oscar Heyman Bros. AMW, Inc., 870-3588.

Lampe Berger gift sets, includes best-selling fragrance Ocean Breeze and a lampe in six color options, $40. AllSouth Appliance, 942-0408.

“Vulcan,” Karen Libecap mixed media, 2x4, $450. Grand Bohemian Gallery, 203-4714.

Glass blown Vulcan holiday ornament, $24.90. The Anvil at Vulcan Park & Museum, 933-1409.

Canoe bucket tote in natural tanned leather and golden hair on hide. Lined with interior pockets. Includes leather tassel. 17”H x 12”W x 4 1/2”D, $359. Lamb’s Ears, LTD, 802-5700.

Fair Isle Fleece Full-Zip Classic with a twist, using the classic Fairisle sweater patter on a full-zip fleece for an updated look, $198. vineyard vines, 970-9758.

The Lucy’s Inspire to Give necklaces. Wear one, share one, $32 for both. Alabama Goods, 803-3900.

Colorful, fun and comfy slippers in assorted designs and colors, $48 per pair. Christine’s on Canterbury, 871-8297.

Navy Seal Colormark watch by Luminox, $395. Barton-Clay, 871-7060.

The Cheese Vault is the ultimate home cheese storage unit, allowing cheese to “breathe” and eliminating excess moisture to maintain flavor and delay molding, $30. The Cook Store, 879-5277.

Christopher Radko “Before the Great Fall” ornament, benefiting Children’s of Alabama, $54. Bromberg’s, Mountain Brook Village, 871-3276 and The Summit, 969-1776.

Handmade mugs, large or small, available in various prices. Earthborn Studios, 702-7055.

38 • Thursday, December 1, 2016

Antique woodcut prints, $130. Arcenaux Art Gallery, 802-5800.

holiday gift guide II

Karen Sugarman Venetian Glass Cherub Intaglio Earrings, $235. John-William Jeweller, 870-4367.

Grey Haley Hobo bag, $64. At Home Furnishings, 879-3510.

Weber Summit charcoal grill, $1,499, grill center, $1,999. Little Hardware, 871-4616.


Crocheted hot pads, available in four colors, $12. Leaf & Petal, Botanical Gardens, 871-3832 and The Summit, 967-3232.

Gloster teak porch rocker, $699. Black Jack Gardens, 836-2933.

Three necklaces from award-winning designer I Reiss, prices range from $795-$995. Levy’s Fine Jewelry, 251-3381.

Trending bell sleeve red romper, $66. The Dress Shop on Linden, 739-2152.

PIKO tops, made from bamboo with a great roomy fit, $24.99. Flip Flops & What Nots, 967-7429.

Revision Skin Care’s All-around Radiance gift set, includes Finishing Touch microdermabrasion scrub, D.E.J eye cream, Intellishade in original or matte, Black Mask and a travel bag. Total Skin & Beauty Dermatology Center, 933-0987.

Doll house with open floor plan, measures 36” tall by 21” wide and 10” deep. Mary Charles Doll House, 870-5544.

Late19th and 20th century crucifixes. Roman Brantley Art & Antiques, 460-1224.

Ugg robe, available in cream, $125, and grey, in sizes S-XL, $98. The Lingerie Shoppe, 871-8994.

Holiday pajamas in 100% cotton flannel for the entire family including the family pups, available in any size, $29. a.k.a Girl Stuff, 802-7735. Full Moon BBQ’s Ultimate Flavor Pack comes loaded with Full Moon’s Southern Seasoning, Famous Chow Chow, award winning BBQ Sauce and their very sought after Alabama White Sauce, $30.99, Online at

Multi-colored Baroque South Sea Pearls, $3,000. Wallace-Burke, 874-1044.

Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 39

holiday gift guide II


Le Feu De L’eau scented artisanal candles, sculpted underwater without the use of a mold. Once the candle has burned use as a vase, $62. Table Matters, 879-0125.

Choker-style necklace with a labradorite pendant, $45.99. george. in Snoozy’s Kids, 871-2662.

White gold diamond and sapphire pendant, $3,110. Southeastern Jewelers, 980-9030.

Hand-crafted Simon & Ruby jewelry by designer Lindsey Farrer who creates objects that reflect her travels, prices range from $24-$157. Blue Willow Gifts, 968-0909.

Happy Holidays!

Shop local!

Crabtree & Evelyn Nail Polish Hand-poured artisan guest soaps, starting at $18.50. Interiors by Kathy Harris, 970-4161.

Inogen One G3 Portable Oxygen Concentrator. Enjoy the independence of a portable oxygen concentrator in one of the smallest, lightest, and quietest devices available to the oxygen user today. Available at the RSA Medical Boutique. 871-1977.

Huck’s Hideaway, a Cotton Collection bird house from Heartwood birds, bees and boards. Weathers wonderfully thanks to sturdy construction, $98.99. Wild Birds Unlimited, 823-6500.

Vintage hand-carved creche, $340. Tricia’s Treasure, 871-9779.

No formaldehyde, camphor, dibutyl phthalates. Many color choices. $8 bottle.

Christine’s Canterbury


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

2404 Canterbury Road ~ (205) 555-1234

Good Measure recipe glasses in Tequila, Vodka, Whiskey and Hangover cocktails, $10 each. Lucky Duck Gifts, 238-5056. “Industrial strength” fire pits available in a variety of sizes, starting at $325. Frontera, 320-1900.

Moritz Glik 18k rose gold earrings with 2.47ct blueish spinel and 0.84ct rose cut diamonds enclosed in double white sapphires, $5,780. Etc., 871-6747.

Holiday Sale! New Holiday HourS Now opeN MoNdayS 3301 Lorna Rd Suite 1, Hoover, Alabama 205-978-5880

40 • Thursday, December 1, 2016

holiday fun


Happy Holidays!

Cities and merchants across the Over the Mountain area are adding their own dash of cheer for the start of the holiday season with open houses, tree lightings, parades and more. Here’s a rundown of community events in the works:

OTM Communities Plan Holiday Events

Homewood Mayor Scott McBrayer will light the historic Homewood Star at the top of 18th Street on Dec. 6 at 6:30 p.m., beginning of the Downtown Homewood Christmas Parade. The parade will feature themed floats traversing the downtown Homewood area. After the parade, Santa will light the tree at City Hall and remain there for pictures. For float registration information, visit For more information, contact Rusty Holley at 332-6705 or rusty.holley@

Vestavia Hills The city will continue its annual Holiday in the Hills festivities with a special Santa Breakfast on Dec. 10 from 7:30-10 a.m. The event will be held in the Dogwood Room at the Vestavia Hills Civic Center. The city’s official holiday parade will be held on Dec. 11 from 2-4 p.m., traveling from the Liberty Park Sports Complex to Alston Meadows and featuring Grand Marshall Kelly Garner, the VHHS Marching Band and Santa Claus. The Liberty Park Christmas Celebration will follow the parade at Alston Meadows Park, featuring kids’ activities, refreshments, music and pictures with Santa. For more information, visit ❖

Photo special to the Journal

Hoover A Christmas tree lighting ceremony will take place Dec. 1 at 5 p.m., beginning with a performance by the Hoover City School choir. A Hoover City student will then light the tree, making way for Santa’s grand entrance on a fire truck. A snow play area will provide tons of winter fun for children and light refreshments will be served. Santa will be available for photos following the ceremony. For more information, visit

Far left: Santa has been seen around Mountain Brook reviewing his parade route on Dec. 4. Above left: Mayor Scott McBrayer will light the historic Homewood Star at the top of 18th Street on Tues., Dec. 6 at 6:30 p.m. Left: The Vestavia Hills High School band will march in the city’s official parade on Dec. 11 in Liberty Park.

Journal photo by Lee Walls Jr.

Journal photo by Maury Wald

Mountain Brook Mountain Brook Village will hold its annual open house Dec. 1, beginning at 5 p.m. Some stores will offer special prices all day in preparation for the event. The city of Mountain Brook will host its annual holiday parade through Mountain Brook Village on Dec. 4 at 3 p.m. Attendees will have a chance to catch goodies thrown from holiday-themed floats

created by groups representing the community and local businesses. Accompanying the floats will be performances by the Mountain Brook High School marching band, elves, music, photo opportunities with Santa and more. The parade will follow a path along Cahaba Road, Culver Road and Petticoat Lane. Cahaba Village will host an open house celebration Dec. 6 from 5-7 p.m.. The event will include special holiday deals and festive activities. Crestline Village in Mountain Brook will hold its annual holiday open house Dec. 8. Various stores in the village will be running specials all day, with official open house hours running from 5-7 p.m. Little Lavender will host a book signing for Crestline Elementary student Callie Chapman’s children’s book, “Glitter the Unicorn,” from 5-6:30 p.m.

holiday fun In the Villages of Mountain Brook!

crestline Village Open House Thursday, Dec. 8th

Holiday Parade Sun., Dec. 4th at 3 p.m.

Parade activities begin with live entertainment from the center stage in Mountain Brook Village as Santa and the parade make their way through Mountain Brook, sponsored by Swoop.

MOunTain BrOOk Village Open House Thurs., Dec. 1st


crestline village

Left, Scooter and Susie Hammers with grandchildren and right, Jan and Mike Cobb with grandchildren. Scooter and Mike played football together at Samford University while studying pharmacy, and their wives were sorority sisters.

Crestline Pharmacy and Christmas Shoppe home décor from popular lines like Beatriz Ball, Friends and family are the foundation of Uttermost, C&F, Mud Pie and many more.  business for Scooter Hammers and Mike Cobb, In anticipation of the Christmas Season, the owners of Crestline Pharmacy since 1990.  Crestline Pharmacy Christmas Shoppe is open Scooter and Mike played football together at on Hoyt Lane with an amazing array of ornaSamford University while studying pharmacy, ments, Christmas linens, nativities, decorations and their wives were sorority sisters.  and gifts to brighten the holidays. Each family raised three girls and now have  The owners are asknine grandchildren In anticipation of the ing folks to stop by the between them.  The Christmas Season, the pharmacy and Christmas Hammers and Cobb Crestline Pharmacy Christmas Shoppe so they can get families joined the Shoppe is open on Hoyt Lane to know Mike, Scooter Crestline community with an amazing array of and their family and over 26 years ago with ornaments, Christmas linens, friends who make a focus on personal serNativities, decorations and Crestline Pharmacy such vice and relationships a special place. with customers. gifts to brighten the holidays.  Store hours are  Crestline Pharmacy Mon.-Fri. from 8 a.m.-8 p.m., Sat. from 8 a.m.-6 offers personal charge accounts, free delivery p.m. and Sun. from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Christmas and seven-day-a-week service to provide the Shoppe hours are Mon.-Sat. from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. best in pharmacy care.  Crestline Pharmacy is located at 60 Church The gift shop located in the front of the St. in Crestline Village, 871-0317. store offers unique year round gift, jewelry and

Lamb’s Ears, Ltd.

Lamb’s Ears, Ltd. is a unique shop full of unique home décor, housewares, personal accessories and a large variety of art and jewelry from local artists. The store employs a staff of sales associates ready to help you find the perfect accessory for yourself, your home or a gift that you can proudly present. Julie Howell and Elizabeth Roberts, above, the sisters who own this distinctive boutique, celebrated their fifth anniversary in Crestline Village this past summer.  “Our customers are certainly the reason we come to work every day,” Julie said, “but we know that one of the main reasons they choose to shop with us is because of our excellent sales staff.  They know that their shopping experience will be stress-free because they can depend on finding the assistance they want and need.  Many of our staff have a great deal of decorating experience to share.  If a gift is what they need, we will help them find the right thing at the right price and wrap it beautifully.” “Our hometown customers are the ones we love to see again and again,” said Elizabeth, “and we’re always thrilled to see the ones from out-of-town who make us part of the reason they come visit Birmingham.  What an honor!” Lamb’s Ears, Ltd. is located at 70 Church Street in Crestline Village, 802-5700.

Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 41

george In Snoozy’s Kids

For 27 years, Snoozy’s Kids has been known for having the best toys, making it a destination for great gift ideas. “Fear not!,” said store owner George Jones. “You will not outgrow Snoozy’s Kids!” Specializing in tweens to the trendy, george buyers have shopped all the major markets in the nation to bring the most fashion forward accessories to Birmingham.

“With the advent of george - our boutique area in Snoozy’s - our accessory selection has exploded,” Jones said. Specializing in tweens to the trendy, george buyers have shopped all the major markets in the nation to bring the most fashion forward accessories to Birmingham. “Style, price, and of course, uncompromising service at george will help will make this time of year a pleasure. Wait til you see their faces when they open a package from george!!” George said. george In Snoozy’s Kids is located at 228 Country Club Park, Crestline Village, 871-2662.

Tween to Trend Accessories In Snoozy's Kids

Truly ... hundreds of wonderful gift items for all ages under one roof!!

Crestline Pharmacy Christmas Shoppe 60 Church Street • 871-0317

Crestline Village 871.2662 Monday-Friday 9-6, Saturday 10-5, Sunday 12-4

42 • Thursday, December 1, 2016

Interiors & Antiques Interiors & Antiques is comprised of a diverse group of dealers with a wide variety of merchandise, including fine antiques, currently trending home décor, repurposed or hand built furniture, and freshly painted and gently used estate finds. Customers will find local artwork like Lisa Smythe’s “White Christmas” and Marsha Baker’s “Eden Designs” yearround, in addition to a selection of women’s clothing, jewelry and accessories from Adrienne Macoy’s “Gifts & Gratitudes” and Sonia Pettus’ “Silver Linings Boutique.” Nostalgia Fine Arts, the store’s newest dealer, can customize and frame many selections of artwork. For the “DIY-er,” a selection of Amy Howard chalk paint products will refresh and restore your favorite pieces.  Whether it is something in stock or a cus-

vestavia hills

tom order, employees, pictured above, from left, Randy Johnson, designer; Pam Pinckney, store owner; and Dalene Barrett, decorator, will lend a helping hand to anyone decorating their homes. Johnson and Barrett can even provide an in-home consultation.  “We would like to invite the many talented area designers and decorators to shop with us for their clients,” Pinckney said. “New home owners will find many unique and beautiful pieces for their new nest. “Interiors & Antiques is a great place for someone to have a small business but still have the freedom to do other things. We are always looking for talented dealers who want a flexible schedule without having to commit to a long lease or man a store. Please contact us if you or someone you know is interested in joining our team.”   Interiors & Antiques is located at 1069 Montgomery Highway next to Sprouts in Vestavia Hills, 822-9922.


The Wald Group Mike and Hayden Wald, above, from right, are a father and son team who specialize in helping over the mountain families purchase and sell their homes. They have been the number one agents in Vestavia for years, and last year they sold more homes than any other Realty South agents in Alabama. “The most exciting thing about the Vestavia market right now, is that there are more opportunities for clients to buy a new home than we’ve seen in years,” said Mike. “There are several new neighborhoods under development or in the planning stages with well over a hundred homes to be built. Prices start in the low $400,000’s. These new neighborhoods are being


developed by some of Birmingham’s best builders. They build quality homes and offer beautiful designs. And just as important, they offer streamlined systems to help make the process easier for homebuyers.  “Hayden and I assist our clients from the lot selection to final walkthrough. With years of experience in new construction, we’re uniquely qualified to help insure our client’s have a successful building experience,” said Mike. “We have several clients who are currently building new homes in Vestavia and they’re actually enjoying it!” For the inside scoop on all the new construction opportunities in Vestavia, prospective homebuyers can visit the team’s website,, or they can call Mike Wald at 541-0940 and Hayden Wald at 919-5535.















0+ 20,00 Foot e r a u ! Sq room Show







RealtySouth’s #1 Agents in Number of Homes Sold! 2624 ALTARIDGE WAY COMING SOON

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Hayden Wald | 205.919.5535 Mike Wald | 205.541.0940


Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 43

vestavia hills


Calendar of Events

Breakfast with Santa December 10

Vestavia Hills Civic Center, 7:30-10:00 am 1975 Merryvale Road Bring the whole family for a pancake breakfast with Santa!

Vestavia Hills Christmas Parade & Celebration December 11 Liberty Park Sports Complex to Alston Meadows, 2:00-4:00 pm

Enjoy the city’s official parade featuring Grand Marshall Kelly Garner, the VHHS Marching Band and Santa Claus! Head to Alston Meadows Park after the Parade for the Liberty Park Christmas Celebration, with kids’ activities, refreshments, music, and pictures with Santa!

Visit for an extended list of events Presented by the City of Vestavia Hills & the Vestavia Hills Chamber of Commerce

Participating Merchants AC Financial Partners America’s First Federal Credit Union Artists Incorporated Gallery Ascend Web Development Birmingham Speech & Hearing Associates Bruster’s Real Ice Cream Butler Snow LLP Cahaba Heights Pediatric Dentistry Cellular Sales of Verizon Wireless First Partners Bank Hilton Garden Inn-Liberty Park Jackson, Howard & Whatley, CPAs Jimmie Hale Mission Jimmy John’s John Henley State Farm Insurance Lakeside Hospice Liberty Park Joint Venture Mary Kay Cosmetics-Susie Serio MassMutual Financial Group OnTime Service

PT Orthodontics Pure Fitness Regions Bank RE/MAX Advantage South-Ashley Bryan RE/MAX Southern Homes-Becky Hicks Sentry Heating, Air Conditioning, Plumbing & Generators Spectrum Reach Standard Heating & Air Conditioning Stein Mart Summit Express Urgent Care Town Village Vestavia Hills Vestavia Hills United Methodist Church Vestavia Reserve Apartment Homes Vestavia Voice Vintage Barber Shop Vulcan Solar Power 89.9/106.3 WAY-FM

44 • Thursday, December 1, 2016

Art Connections



Teachers Use Annual OTMJ Holiday Card Issue as Basis for Lessons

In a New Light

Art teachers throughout the area agreed that taking time to create a work of art is important for their students and serves as an opportunity to look at their other lessons in a new light. At Edgewood Elementary, art teacher Celia Castle said the holiday card project, as well as any other holiday art projects, are led by homeroom teachers. Castle said that, because students don’t participate in art classes as often as their regular curriculum classes, it’s a good way to free up some of her time for other lessons. Morgan, on the other hand, said she likes to present the project in connection with other lessons, whether its reading and discussing the history of “The Night Before Christmas,” or tying in a science lesson on the use of color. “They really seem to embrace and favor most of the things we do,” Morgan said. “We’re currently doing holidays around the world lessons – more history and cultures.” Gilmore incorporated lessons on graphic design and making art for publication into the holiday card class and recently incorporated science lessons on insect characteristics into a drawing project for her firstgrade students. “We connect to social studies when we learn about art from other cultures,” Gilmore said. “We use math when we measure and talk about types of shapes and balance. I

Sea Salt caramel shortbread cookie straws, $22. One word... DELICIOUS!! Perfect gift for everyone on your list!

2406 Canterbury road Mtn. brook Village 879.2730

Photos courtesy of Melissa Gilmore.

As schools prepared for the Thanksgiving holidays and the impending holiday break, elementary art classes celebrated the season by working on holiday cards to submit for the Dec 15 annual Holiday Card Issue of the Over the Mountain Journal. Outside of using the project as a way to pay homage to the holidays, art teachers around the community said they enjoy the opportunity it gives their students to showcase their creative talents and the skills they have learned in the classroom. Green Valley Elementary art teacher Tracy Morgan said that, when she announces it’s time to work on holiday cards, her ears are met with a good bit of cheering. “I think this is a good way for the kids to see that art is not only made for the artist, but for the viewer as well,” Morgan said. “Art should be made to be seen. This also helps kids to self-evaluate, knowing that it may be seen by many.”  Green Valley students spend one lesson working on their cards, but they may take home their creations and finish them if they feel theirs are not complete. Vestavia Hills Elementary Liberty Park students are allotted two to three classes to finish their project, said art teacher Melissa Gilmore. She has found that younger students tend to be more spontaneous with their work while older students take more time. “Opportunities like this let kids know that their ideas have value and are worth sharing,” she said. “They get a kick out of knowing that their cards are spreading joy to people in their community – even to people they have never met before.”  Harry Adams, a teacher at Shades Mountain Christian School, said his students spend up to four class periods on their cards, seeing it as a good opportunity to showcase their talents. “When I present the card project

to my classes, I usually ask students who have had their work in the newspaper in previous years to raise their hand,” he said. “This gives affirmation to students who raise their hand and shows their classmates that they can do the same.” Adams said elementary school years are a time when many children choose interests that remain with them into adulthood. Art classes, he said, give kids a chance to develop drawing and painting skills and an appreciation for the creative process.

Above, from left: Vestavia Hills Elementary Liberty Park third-graders, from left, Bailey Corley and Neha Karakheti and Emma Kate Ashley with their holiday cards. Left: VHELP fourth-graders Daniel Dillon and Kyle Pool spend art class working on their submissions for OTMJ’s annual Holiday Card issue. Look for artwork from OTM area schools in our Dec. 15th issue.

love that art has a way of connecting learning from different areas.” As with any creative lesson, Gilmore finds that art is a way to get some of the more reserved students out of their shells. A favorite is always the clay lessons, which she said students begin requesting about

the second week of school. “Kids can express themselves through art in ways that they can’t verbally,” she said. “For many students, art class is their opportunity to shine at school.” Showcasing the talents of the younger students in the community,

the holiday card project gives kids a chance to shine outside of school as well. “It’s always good for elementaryaged children to get recognition for a job well done,” Adams said. “Art might be the only area in which some children excel.” ❖

Edgewood Celebrates Students’ Best Selves Edgewood Elementary School kicked off its “Best Me” program at the end of October.   Principal Matt Kiser and Assistant Principal Laura Tate presented the new program as an extension of the “best me” motto that the school initiated this school year.  Ten students per class will receive T-shirts throughout the school year for displaying “best me” behavior. In addition, students will be given awards if they are caught doing something that represents their “best me.”  Students who win the awards will be eligible for a drawing to win a special experience with Kiser and Tate.

OLS School Holds First Father/ Daughter Dance Our Lady of Sorrows School hosted its inaugural Father/Daughter Dance Nov. 4. Young ladies danced the night away with their fathers in the church’s Family Life Center. Guests enjoyed dancing, refreshments and a selection of crafts. Photo special to the Journal

By Emily Williams

From left: Sophie Kate Turner and her dad, Kile; Olivia Sapalaran and her dad, Gabriel; Kalista and Sophia Bell and their dad, Myron.

Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 45


Photos special to the Journal


Mountain Brook High School Hosts 50th Annual Pageant

From left: Art teacher Larry Gibson, who designed the banner; Leah Seng, assistant band director; Esther Lee, the student who created gift artwork; guest speaker Lt. Cmdr. Matt Driskill; Cecilia Kong, the student who designed the invitation and program artwork; and Brent Coleman, choir director and Living History Day organizer.

Pizitz Middle School Hosts Veteran’s Day Celebration Pizitz Middle School held its annual Veteran’s Day celebration Nov. 9. More than 75 veterans were honored in a ceremony that featured patriotic choral and band performances. Guest speaker for the event was Lt. Cmdr. Matt Driskill.

The Living History Day program was organized by choir director Brent Coleman with help from Pizitz art teacher Larry Gibson, who designed the event banner. Student Esther Lee created gift artwork to thank Driscill or speaking and student Cecilia Kong designed the artwork for the event invitation and the program. ❖

Mountain Brook High School put on the 50th annual Miss Olympian Pageant on Nov. 19. Pageant contestants included Caroline Underwood, Maggie Duggan, Caroline Cross, Mary Robins Miller, Savannah Smith, Sarah Gladney, Ellie Romero, Adele Bloodworth, Lizzie Walker, Emily Donahue, Tess Levine and Molly Regan. To start off the day, all 12 contestants met with a panel of judges for a sixminute interview and were asked questions about their personal interests, accomplishments and goals. Later in the evening, the pageant staff invited all 49 previous Olympian Pageant winners to a reception to

celebrate the anniversary. The past winners had a chance to walk the stage one more time before the event kicked off. The event included performances by former Miss Olympians Kristi Higginbotham, Jennifer Faulkner and Lea Ann Strickland. Then each 2017 contestant showcased her talents, ranging from singing to dancing and even included a monologue. Contestants then changed into gowns for the evening wear portion of the pageant. Contestants were assisted by Tanner Dean, Wilson Golden, Duncan Morris and Joe Martin. While each contestant was

presented on stage, the emcees for the night, Kathryne Letzer and Will Leitner, provided the audience with a brief background, activities and accomplishments. Several male students performed during the pageant, including: Harrison Gorham and Christian Huddle, Will Garrison, and the high school’s male a cappella group, A Bunch Of Guys. MBHS math teacher Rodney Kornegay sang “This is the Moment” as the girls lined the stage for crowning. Savannah Smith was voted Miss Congeniality, Adele Bloodworth was second runner up, Savannah Smith was first runner up and Caroline Cross was crowned the 2017 Miss Olympian.

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46 • Thursday, December 1, 2016

McMillan and Life



Spartans Aim Toward Another Big Season

By Lee Davis Coach Bucky McMillan.

Others on the Mountain Brook roster are juniors Britton Johnson, Hamp Sisson and Sean Elmore, and sophomores Alex Washington and Lior Berman. “I like this team a lot,” McMillan said. “They love the game of basketball.” The Spartans will compete in Class 7A’s Area Six, arguably one of the toughest divisions in the classification. Joining Mountain Brook in the area are Huffman, Oak Mountain and Spain Park. McMillan has been criticized by some for his confident manner, but the Spartan coach gets emotional when discussing the support his program has received from the community since he took over nearly a decade ago. “I grew up here,” said McMillan, who played for the Spartans and graduated from Mountain Brook in 2002. “It means so much to drive by and see young boys who are maybe 8 or 10 years old wearing neon jerseys with basketballs in their hands.” McMillan said that Mountain Brook’s surprising rise to the state championship in 2013-14 offered an important lesson to people from all walks of life. “It’s inspirational,” he said. “People had always thought it was impossible for Mountain Brook to win a state championship in basketball. When we did, people could see that anything is possible and they can apply that to their own lives. When we started generating a groundswell of support and won 33 consecutive home games,

Journal file photo by Marvin Gentry

The past four years of Mountain Brook boys basketball have been nothing short of stunning. Since the 2012-13 season, the Spartans have won two state championships with one runnerup finish. Even last year’s team – which lost in the Class 7A Northeast Regionals – still finished with a more than respectable 24-7 record. Despite all the success, Coach Bucky McMillan has never changed his goals for each new season. “Our goal is never to win the state championship,” McMillan said. “As is the case every year, our goals are simple: First, we need to be a hardworking team. Second, we want to be an unselfish team. And third, we want to be fearless, confident and believe in what we’re doing.” McMillan, who is entering his ninth season on Bethune Drive, clearly has the formula for success. Of course, it also helps to have quality athletes to turn formulas into reality. Mountain Brook has plenty of those, too. The leader may be 6-foot-8 sophomore forward Trendon Watford, who averaged 23 points and 11 rebounds in 2015-16. Already one of the top college recruits in the nation, Watford gives the Spartans a go-to player that few can match. While acknowledging Watford’s talents, McMillan characteristically emphasizes the team over the individual. “Trendon’s a great talent and means a lot to us, but you have to look at the whole of this team,” he said. “We have a lot of great leaders here. Everybody is ‘all in’ for what we are doing.” The Spartans are also blessed with a strong senior class that brings stability and experience. They include guard/forward Ben McCool, 6-foot-4 center Sam Colvin, guard Jackson Lightfoot, guard Jack Brewster and guard Jeb Brown. Only one freshman is on the roster, but his last name brings back fond memories for Mountain Brook fans. Paul Stramaglia’s older brother Mario is the all-time leading scorer in Spartan basketball history.

Guard Jeb Brown, above, is a member of a strong senior class that brings stability and experience to the Spartans. Another leader for Mountain Brook this year may be 6-foot-8 sophomore forward Trendon Watford, who averaged 23 points and 11 rebounds in 2015-16.

it was about more than basketball. It was about inspiring others to pursue their dreams.” McMillan sees his own life in those dreams. As a young Spartan, his goal was to one day coach Mountain Brook. It’s fitting that McMillan’s own high school coach – Mark Cornelius – still works in the program as the girls’ coach. McMillan credits his former coach for much of his success. “Coach Cornelius was the one who first planted the idea that Mountain Brook could win a state championship in basketball,” he said.

“He had the confidence that it could be done.” The belief that the impossible is possible is the mental hardware that strengthens the Spartans’ program. “The habits our team will have are the ones that are being forged right now, practice and in the early games,” McMillan said. “If we do the things we’re supposed to do, we can feel good about our record regardless of what happens on the court.” Mountain Brook fans are going to feel good about what their team does on the court in 201617.

‘Dogs Chow Down on the Mocs

The Samford University volleyball team played its way to the NCAA Tournament for the third time in six seasons, defeating the Chattanooga Mocs 3-1 in the championship match of the 2016 Southern Conference Tournament. With the Nov. 21 win, Samford earned the conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament, a feat also achieved by the Bulldogs in 2011 and 2014. The Bulldogs defeated Chattanooga for the third time this season in front of a raucous crowd at the Pete Hanna Center. Samford’s Erin Bognar was named the SoCon Tournament Most Valuable Player after finishing the match with 28 kills and 16 digs, according to a Samford statement. The Bulldogs’ dominant senior outside hitter, who is from St. Louis, Missouri, tallied a hitting percentage of .333. In the first set, Samford jumped out to an early lead only to drop behind the Mocs and then power ahead again for a 25-19 win. The Mocs rallied for a 25-20 win in the second frame as the teams entered intermission tied

at 1-1. The third set was separated by no more than one-point until the Bulldogs tallied five straight points to take a 15-10 lead, which Chattanooga could not overcome. Samford took the set 25-20 and the lead heading into the fourth set. The teams traded the lead in the fourth frame until Samford pulled ahead, taking eight of the last 10 points before the Bulldogs piled on the court in celebration with the scoreboard reading 25-22 in favor of Samford. The high-energy, fast-paced contest consisted of 29 ties and 14 lead changes. Samford finished the championship victory with four players with double-digit kills. Bognar paced the squad with a game-high 28, while Kate Neisler added 14 and Gabbi Greenwald blasted 12. Bulldog true freshman Kelsi Hobbs, a Hoover native and graduate of John Carroll Catholic, ended the title match with 11 kills and five block assists. Senior setter Erika Pifer registered a gamehigh 32 assists, while sophomore Taylor Anderton added 22 assists and 16 digs for a double-double.

Photo special to the Journal

Samford Volleyball Team Takes Southern Conference Title, Heads to NCAA Tournament

Bulldog true freshman Kelsi Hobbs, a Hoover native and graduate of John Carroll Catholic, ended the title match with 11 kills and five block assists.

Neisler led the squad with 17 digs and earned SoCon All-Tournament honors. She was joined on the postseason team by teammates Greenwald and Bognar. True freshman Grace Tiesman and senior Mattie Newson both finished with 10 digs

apiece. Samford head coach Keylor Chan has accumulated a 21-13 record in his first season with the Bulldogs. The first round of NCAA Tournament play begins Dec. 1, culminating in the championship game Dec. 17.

Thursday, December 1, 2016 • 47



football, From page 48

Journal file photo by Marvin Gentry

Hoover quarterback Garrett Farquhar didn’t have eye-popping numbers, but effectively got the job done. He completed nine of 19 passes for 139 yards and ran for 50 yards on only three carries. Shedrick Jackson caught four catches for 68 yards, while Vonte Brackett gained 68 yards on nine carries. Farquhar attempted only two passes in the second half, including a 14-yard scoring strike to George Pickens on the first play of the fourth quarter. The Bucs weren’t perfect against Gadsden City; they threw three interceptions and had a field goal attempt blocked. But any mistakes by the offense were offset by the overall play of the defensive unit, which hasn’t surrendered more than two touchdowns by any team from Alabama this season. Hoover ran its overall record to 11-2, with both losses coming at the hands of out-ofstate opponents. In Class 5A, Briarwood saw its season end with a 14-8 loss to Wenonah in the semifinals. The Dragons’ win avenged a 15-14

Journal file photo by Mark Almond

on track: Hoover has been looking forward to adding the 10th piece of championship hardware since 2000 to the school trophy case all year. As we went to press for this issue Hoover was preparing to take on McGill-Toolen of Mobile at Auburn University’s Jordan Hare Stadium on Nov 30. For photos and results please go to

loss to the Lions in September. Briarwood’s strong play on special teams nearly brought the host Lions the victory. After falling behind 7-0 at halftime, Briarwood rallied when JR Tran Reno returned the third quarter kickoff 94 yards for a touchdown, cutting the margin to 7-6. Wenonah responded with a scoring drive to take a 14-6 lead into the final period.

Hoover quarterback Garrett Farquhar.

state champs, From page 48

Porter said that the Patriots’ consistency – placing four runners in the top 15 – was a key factor in the victory. In addition to Stone’s first place finish, Paul Selden finished third, while Alvin Finch and Carson Bedics placed 14th and 15th, respectively. Homewood’s girls team is primarily composed of underclassmen, which raised questions about how they would perform in the spotlight of the state meet, according to Porter. “Our only losses during the season had been to Class 7A teams, but we were so young that we’d never been in a situation of running for a state championship before,” he said. “We knew we had to execute because Florence and John Carroll Catholic had won in the previous two years and were capable of having big days.” Phelps dominated the field, winning the girls title by more than a minute. But outstanding performances by Celie Jackson, who finished fifth, and Audrey Nabors, who finished ninth, gave the Patriots a lead that was impossible for their rivals to overcome. Homewood overwhelmed Florence 51-103 to claim the championship.

“With such a young team, we hope that future years will bring similar results,” Porter said. “But we know that we have to focus on improvement and take it one year at a time.” Spoken just like a coach. The news may have been more disappointing at Mountain Brook, but there were still reasons to smile. The Lady Spartans’ incredible 14-year streak of team championships was ended by a runner-up finish to Huntsville. Despite the loss of the team championship, Mountain Brook senior Anna Grace Morgan took the top spot in Class 7A. The Lady Spartans lost their crown to Huntsville 51-61. Another area champion came out of Class 7A, as Hoover’s Tommy McDonough claimed first place in the boys run. In Class 1A-2A, Westminster-Oak

With 2:32 left to play in the game, Briarwood blocked a Dragon punt. The loose ball was nearly recovered in the end zone but rolled out of bounds for a safety, cutting the margin to 14-8. “I understand that it was about one inch from being a touchdown,” Lion coach Fred Yancey said. “That’s how close the difference is between success and disappointment

Mountain took the girls championship. Morgan’s time of 17:46.01 was the fastest of any girls time of the day and good enough to give her a comfortable victory over McGillToolen’s Grace Jensen, who finished at 18:18.06. But Morgan admitted there was nothing easy about the accomplishment. “Going in, I didn’t know what was going to happen or who we would be racing against,” she said. “I was just trying to score the lowest amount of points for the team as possible. About a mile in, I knew I could take the race, if I kept pushing.” Morgan said her confidence increased once she caught up with the race’s front-runner. “I remember the gap closing and suddenly being right behind her,” she explained. “Then I realized that

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in a big game.” Briarwood gained possession after the safety, but Wenonah’s Xavier Stewart’s interception with 1:52 remaining in the game ended the Lions’ final hope. The loss was painful, but Briarwood’s move to Class 5A was largely successful as the Lions finished with an 11-2 overall record.

I could win. There was still a mile to go after passing her so I ran as fast as I could and tried to create a gap.” As the adrenalin kicked in, Morgan felt herself ready for the final push. “I was still worried that somebody could catch up until about a quarter mile to go,” she said. “Turning the corner to the last straight away was unreal. I thought about all the previous times I’d made the turn (in previous competitions) and how completely different this

time felt. I was so thankful when I crossed the finish line.” While Mountain Brook’s long championship streak finally came to an end, Morgan was encouraged by the team’s performance. “It was a very bittersweet experience,” she said. “I had no idea how the rest of the team was doing, which is always scary. So many of them had great races, too, and I’m so proud and thankful that they were always there for me this season. I couldn’t have won without them.”



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Thursday, December 1, 2016


McMillan and Life: Spartans Aim Toward Another Big Season, page 46

Eight Ball

lee davis

Running Game

Hoover Headed to Final, Briarwood Loses in Semis

State Champions Look Back on Big Day

By Lee Davis

See football, page 47

Briarwood saw its season end with a 14-8 loss to Wenonah in the semi-finals. The Lions rallied when JR Tran Reno, pictured, returned the third quarter kickoff 94 yards for a touchdown, cutting the margin to 7-6. Journal photo by Marvin Gentry

A rout of Gadsden City set the Hoover Buc’s up for a championship showdown and the chance to add the 10th piece of championship hardware since 2000 to the school trophy case. The Bucs, appearing in their eighth state championship game in nine years, met defending Class 7A titlist McGill-Toolen of Mobile at Auburn University’s Jordan Hare Stadium on Nov 30. Coach Josh Niblett’s team reached the final game after defeating Gadsden City 42-14 on Nov. 18. Hoover broke open a game that was tied at halftime by scoring 35 unanswered points. With the score tied 7-7 early in the third quarter, the Bucs’ Jason Evans fell on a Titan fumble in the end zone to give Hoover a 14-7 lead that only grew larger. “I saw the ball laying there and knew I needed to make the play for my team,” Evans said. “It was a great feeling to score – but a much better feeling to win the game and be playing for a state championship again.” The turnover seemed to rattle Gadsden City, which fumbled its next two snaps and lost 27 yards in the first five plays of the third period. Hoover’s defense held the hosts to one first down and four total yards in the second half. Niblett said the Bucs’ quick third quarter start was a vital key to the victory. “I’m proud of our kids,” he said. “We were able to take them out of their element in the second half and forced them to throw the ball. Our special teams came through with some big plays and our offense got really physical in the last two quarters.”

Nov. 12, 2016, may have been just another Saturday to some people, but it was a very big day in the history of Over the Mountain cross-country running. Not only did the Homewood Patriots sweep the boys and girls Class 6A titles at Oakville Indian Mounds Park, they also produced individual winners in both categories. Sophomore Will Stone captured the boys crown, and freshman Lainey Phelps claimed the girls prize. “I’m privileged to have the honors we’ve won,” Stone said. “Our team put a lot of work into this and our efforts paid off. We’re now enjoying the rewards.” Homewood has become a quiet dynasty in Class 6A track and field. The Patriot cross-country boys earned their fifth consecutive title. Homewood routed runner up Cullman 55-72 to gain the blue trophy. “It was a fun day,” Patriot coach Lars Porter said. “Having both teams win made it an extremely special time, and claiming the individual titles made it that much more fulfilling.” Since Homewood had been ranked number one in boys cross-country the entire season, Porter said he was confident in his team’s chances in the state meet. “I felt good about our position, but Cullman had been improving all season so we knew we had to be at our best to get the win,” he said. “At the end of the day everyone did their job, running their best races as individuals and we were grateful to finish in first place.” See state champs, page 47