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Journal photo by Jordan Wald

Getting to Know You

NEW ARRIVALS The Birmingham Zoo introduced two new additions to its Trails of Africa last week, Gadze (above) and Luti, young male African elephants. Ages 10 and 9, both bulls hail from San Diego Zoo Safari Park. The Zoo also dedicated its new Arrival Experience on June 27. The project was part of the facility’s Renew the Zoo Campaign. See stories, page 14.


2 • Thursday, July 11, 2019




Murphy’s Law

T NO SMALL FEAT Elise Mayfield Returns to the RMTC Stage for Matilda the Musical PAGE 4

FUN OF THE FOURTH OTM Areas Celebrate Independence Day PAGE 12

EVERY PICTURE TELLS A STORY Modern Condo in the Sky Is Backdrop for Local DJs Antiques and Art Collection PAGE 22

FRIENDLY FOOD FIGHT Four Will Face off at Iron City Chef Competition PAGE 26


HOME 22 FOOD 26 SCHOOLS 28 SPORTS 32 With everything that’s happening “Over the Mountain,” it can be difficult to keep up. That’s why we have launched the OTMJ newsletter. Published every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday - we’ll give you a quick recap of the latest news, sports and social events as well as a heads up on upcoming events so you won’t miss any of the interesting and fun happenings in the Greater Birmingham metro area. To sign up for our newsletter, visit Follow us on Facebook and Instagram, @overthemountainjournal, for daily updates on what’s going on around town, too.


July 11, 2019 JOU RNAL Publisher & Editor: Maury Wald Copy Editor: Virginia Martin Features Writer: Donna Cornelius Staff Writer: Emily Williams Photographer: Jordan Wald Editorial Assistant: Stacie Galbraith Sports: Blake Ells, Rubin E. Grant Contributors: Susan Murphy, June Mathews, Emil Wald, Marvin Gentry, Lee Walls, Bryan Bunch, Sam Prickett, Lauren Helmer Advertising Sales: Julie Trammell Edwards, Tommy Wald, Gail Kidd, Suzanne Wald Vol. 28, No. 23

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 2019 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.

Chateau Du Dave

he Epcot Flower and Garden cut and paste, a skill I honed back to Show is dangerous for me. On my kindergarten teaching days. my last visit, I saw a topiary When I got home, I discovered shaped like Kermit the Frog who was that, instead of cilantro, I had grabbed riding a bicycle with a basketful of a citronella plant which would do a French baguettes. It was lovely and bang up job of keeping mosquitoes off whimsical at the same time. of the tortilla chips but probably The danger is that I now know that wouldn’t taste nearly as good. That creating a Kermit the Frog topiary is was fine, but when I went back to the indeed possible, and if that is true, it garden center to re-cilantro, I saw a follows that, with the correct amount display of grape vines, and thought… of talent and training, I could do the ah…a vineyard. same. My mind is filled with visions I’ve been to Napa a few times and Sue Murphy of me leaning against a hoe (Do you it’s flat-out beautiful. The denim-clad need a hoe for topiaries?), saying to winery guides speak lovingly of the my neighbors, “Oh, it was nothing, “terroir” of each vineyard, a mystijust a little water and sunshine.” cal combination of soil and sun and I’ve tried to file this dream away unique to each location I’ve been to Napa a few moisture with my herb garden fantasy, where that combines to create the winery’s times and it’s flat-out distinctive flavor. I rise early in the dew-drenched morning to snip fresh basil and was racing. I could beautiful. The denim- plantMythemind oregano to use in my simple but half dozen grape vines delicious recipes. There are several clad winery guides speak they had in stock in the partial sun problems with that scenario, not the lovingly of the “terroir” areas out back. I don’t know what least of which is that I am not an the terroir is for my yard, but if of each vineyard ... accomplished cook, but then I’m grape vines like the same thing that not an accomplished gardener, poison ivy does, they’d be happy, either. happy plants. It wouldn’t bother my Each season, I dutifully go to dog Dave because he’s so short he the garden center and buy a few flats of annuals, but I could walk right under them. Maybe that’s what I’d leave the rest of the yard work to licensed professioncall my vineyard, Chateau du Dave…or maybe David als. I do love garden centers, though. They’re serene, (Dah-veed) if I wanted to be fancy. I could grow the hopeful places. They make everything look peacefully grapes and pick the grapes and squish the grapes and easy. You buy their fresh, healthy plants, bring them age the juice in a barrel in my garage. If each vine prohome, put them in the dirt (green side up) and give duced two dozen grapes, in five years, I’d end up with them water as needed. And every season, I think, “This half a cup. time it will work.” In the meantime, I could enjoy gazing out at my Because my yard has very little direct sunlight, my vineyard, row upon row of gnarly vines. (Actually only makeshift herb garden is limited to a few pots on the one row. They only had six plants in stock.) And someedge of the driveway. This year, I selected three lovely where in the middle, there’d be a topiary of Kermit the specimens – one basil, one mint and one cilantro for a Frog riding a bicycle. What? It could happen.   corn salsa recipe that is really not cooking but more

Over the Mountain Views

What are you doing to beat the heat this summer? “The splash pad and pools are great because the kids can run around and get hot, but then cool off in the water.” Novin Madeiros and Nuly Farruk North Shelby “Old Overton Club pool at Liberty Park and also the splash pad.” Chandler Cofield with Brooks and Addison Lichter Homewood “Swimming, splash pad, creeks and as many water sports as possible.” Cole and Lacey Ammons Hoover “Splash pads, if there isn’t water present they can’t play outside. It’s too hot.” Tara Baxter, far right, with from left, Noelle Baxter; Calli Hyrdrick with Jackson, Abby Grace and John Davis; and Hannah Baxter. North Shelby


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By Emily Williams

Fri., July 12 Food Truck Festival

What: Episcopal Church of the Ascension presents a free food truck festival including live music, a kids zone with a bounce house and face painting. When: 5-8 p.m. Where: Episcopal Church of the Ascension Website:

Sat., July 13 Otey’s Fest

What: The 10th annual fundraiser to benefit the Phoenix Club of Birmingham features food and live music by the Spin Doctors, DINER, T.U.B., The Hurlers and River Bend. When: 5-10:30 p.m. Where: Otey’s Tavern, Crestline Village Website:

Homewood resident Elise Mayfield grew up performing with numerous local theater companies. She spent summers in the Summerfest program, which is the former title of Red Mountain Theatre Company.

Photo courtesy RMTC

As the 40th anniversary season for Red Mountain Theatre Company comes to a close, a familiar face will return to the stage for the final show, “Matilda the Musical.” A Birmingham native, Elise Mayfield will grace the stage in the production, inspired by Roald Dahl’s “Matilda.” She will play the role of Matilda’s less-than-supportive mother, Mrs. Wormwood. “It’s one of my favorite books and I still love the movie that came out in the ‘90s,” Mayfield said. “I had the pleasure of witnessing this musical on Broadway and it reminded me how much I love the story. The music is incredible, the characters are fascinating, and the staging is engaging. What more could you want?” Mayfield grew up performing with numerous local theater companies. She spent summers in the Summerfest program, which is the former title of Red Mountain Theatre Company. “The last production I performed in was ‘Footloose’ (one of Executive Director Keith Cromwell’s first productions), and I remember closing the show, my parents picking me up at the stage and they drove straight to my dorm room at Ole Miss, where I started college the next day,” Mayfield said. Mayfield moved to Chicago after graduating college, where she began to hone her improvisational skills with Second City and Improv Olympic. In addition, she studied at Columbia College Chicago, earning a master’s in interdisciplinary arts. While working as an e-learning administrator, Mayfield found herself in need of a career

spends time performing around town with RMTC, Terrific New Theatre, Virginia-Samford Theatre and Birmingham Improv Theatre. While Mayfield said she is excited to perform as the over-the-top Mrs. Wormwood, she is most excited to share Matilda’s message with audiences.

‘I hope the community is inspired by our amazing cast of kids and remember that even the little can overcome incredible obstacles.’

No Small Feat

Former Second City Performer Elise Mayfield Returns to the RMTC Stage for Matilda the Musical change. Rather than committing to a career that kept her in a cubicle. A leap of faith and a love of cooking led her to try out and become a contestant on Season 5 of MasterChef. Her time on the show was cut short – she finished in 13th place – but a move back to

What: Murders, brothels, political scandals and an underground river - right here in Birmingham. Join Archivist Jim Baggett for a virtual visit to some of Birmingham’s most infamous historic places. When: 6:30-7:30 p.m. Where: Vestavia Hills Library, Community Room Website:

Wed., July 17 Birmingham Botanical Gardens’ Flicks Among the Flowers What: Make it a date night or bring friends and family, lawn chairs or a blanket to a showing of “Field of Dreams.” Admission is free, but a suggested $5 donation benefits the Gardens.

Birmingham created new opportunities in the culinary world. The Homewood resident now works as the assistant food stylist and host of Smart Cookie, which is a baking website by Allrecipes. When she isn’t working with food, she

When: 6 p.m., gates open; 8 p.m., film Where: Birmingham Botanical Gardens, Formal Garden in front of the Conservatory Website:

Thurs., July 18 Magic City Kitty Art Show

What: A full bar, dance floor and live music by Margeaux and the Cat’s Meow will set the mood at this benefit for Kitty Kat Haven and Rescue. The event will showcase 50 of Birmingham’s best artists with their cat creations and pet-inspired art. When: 6 p.m. Where: Haven Website: “Magic City Kitty Art Show” Facebook page

“Matilda is about the small triumphing over the big,” she said, adding that little doesn’t have to just mean little kids, such as the cast of kids who will join her in the performance, but the underdog rising to triumph. “I hope the community is inspired by our amazing cast of kids and remember that even the little can overcome incredible obstacles,” she said. The production will take place at the Alabama School of Fine Arts’ Dorothy Jemison Day Theatre and will run from July 12 to Aug. 4. A show on July 16 at 2 p.m. will be sensoryfriendly, with elements of the production modified to suit those with sensory, social and cognitive disabilities. For more information, visit

Sat., July 20 Bark & Wine

What: Shelby Humane presents its annual fundraiser featuring complimentary beer and wine, silent and live auctions, a seated dinner and program. Valet cost is included. When: 6 p.m. Where: Grand Bohemian Hotel Website:

Sun., July 21 Battle of the Blues Bands

What: The Magic City Blues Society showcases some of Birmingham’s finest in a competition for a spot at the Intenational Blues Challenge in Memphis, Tennessee. When: 1 p.m., doors open; 2 p.m.

Mon., July 15 Birmingham Noir - Birmingham’s Notorious Historic Sites

Journal file photo by Maury Wald

What: This two-day event will bring together a diverse list of guests, vendors, artists and fan groups in an affordable, family-friendly environment. When: July 13, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; July 14, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Where: BJCC Website:

Tues., July 23 Birmingham Arts Journal Summer Preview Party What: Emmet O’Neal Library’s annual reception features artists, photographers, writers, poets and other creative individuals whose work appears in the Journal. When: 6:30-8:30 p.m. Where: Emmet O’Neal Library Website:

Thurs., July 25 Alabama Law Enforcement Torch Run Golf Tournament

Sat., July 20

What: The 11th annual tournament to benefit Special Olympics is a fourperson best shot (scramble). When: 10:30 a.m. Where: Robert Trent Jones, Oxmoor Valley Website: “11th Annual Alabama Law Enforcement Torch Run Golf Tournament” Facebook page

Mountain Brook Village Market Day

Business After Hours: School Supply Drive At Five

July 13 and 14 Alabama Comic Con

contest Where: Iron City Website:

What: This European-style sidewalk sale is Mountain Brook Village’s most anticipated sale of the year. When: 8 a.m.-5 p.m. (Hours of operation may vary from store to store) Where: Mountain Brook Village and Lane Parke Website:

What: Homewood Chamber of Commerce presents a casual networking event, free with a school supply donation. When: 5-7 p.m. Where: Caveat Coffee Website:


Greater Birmingham Auburn Club Auburn Athletics Kick-off What: This family-friendly event will feature coaches, former AU greats, Aubie, cheerleaders, a silent auction, kid’s zone and more. Keynote speakers will be Carnell “Cadillac” Williams and Rodney Garner. When: 6-8 p.m. Where: Hyatt Regency BirminghamWynfrey Hotel Website:

Journal file photos by Ingrid Howard

Thursday, July 11, 2019 • 5


July 25-Aug. 4

food from around the “Ham.” Funds raised benefit the American Cancer Society Joe Lee Griffin Hope Lodge in Birmingham. When: 7-10 p.m. Where: The Birmingham Zoo, on the new rooftop Website:

July 26-28 SciFi/Fantasy Fest

What: This three-day event features gaming, cosplay, discussion panels

and more. When: Check the website Where: Hoover Public Library Website:

Sat., July 27 Homewood Sidewalk Sale

What: Merchants will line the sidewalks in front of their shops with merchandise discounted up to 75 percent. When: All day Where: Downtown Homewood


Tues., July 30 Summer Reading Finale

What: Celebrate the end of the Summer Reading Program with pizza and music with Roger Day. When: 6:30-7:30 p.m. Where: On the lawn across from Emmet O’Neal Library in Crestline. Website:

“Mary Poppins Jr.”

Tues., July 23 Mad Hatter’s Fairy Garden Tea Party

What: Aldridge Gardens presents its popular tea party. Decorate a small garden container, have “tea” and finger sandwiches and play games. Don’t forget your hat. Registration includes one adult plus one child (ages 4-12). When: 10 a.m.-noon Where: Aldridge Gardens Website:

What: Virginia Samford Theatre’s STARS (Students Take A Role at the Samford) presents a production of Mary Poppins. When: Thurs.-Sat., 7:30 p.m.; Sat., 11 a.m.; Sun. 2:30 p.m. Where: Virginia Samford Theatre, Mainstage Website:

Fri., July 26


6th Grade Social

What: Join the Homewood Library in a social event exclusively for students who will be starting middle school. Registration is required When: 6-8 p.m. Where: Homewood Public Library Round Auditorium Website:

Hope in the Ham

What: This casual soiree features live music, an open bar and delicious

2828 Linden Avenue Homewood 870-4060

Thirteen Distinctive New Homes in Vestavia Hills On the crest of Shades Mountain overlooking Oxmoor Valley, Walnut Hill epitomizes a Wedgworth community: beautiful homes, great views, and energysmart construction. Minutes from I-65 and downtown Birmingham, these To: Mike thirteen home sites surround a central park. With lots starting at $200,000, From: Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 FAX: 205-824-1246 Walnut Hill provides a unique opportunity for you to create a custom home in Date: July 2019 one of Birmingham’s most desirable areas. This is your AD PROOF from the OVER THE MOUNTAIN JOURNAL for the July 11, 2019 issue. Please fax approval or changes to 824-1246.

Please make sure all information is correct, including address and phone number! Thank you for your prompt attention.

Mike Wedgworth (205) 365-4344

6 • Thursday, July 11, 2019



Mountain Brook Village’s 18th Annual

Market Day Saturday, July 20

Shop Lane Parke and the Village for Great Deals!


and that means To: From: Date:

Molly Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 FAX: 205-824-1246 July


This is your AD PROOF from the OVER THE MOUNTAIN JOURNAL for the July 11th issue. Please email approval or changes to 824-1246.

Join us July 11th - 30th Please make sure all information is correct, FOR OUR STOREWIDE SALE Including address and phone number!

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on all linens, frames, gifts,and more!

And, on Market Day, July 20th, join us under the tent for some really "hot" deals, and inside for "cooler" deals! See store for details

2404 Canterbury Road • 871-8297

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Thursday, July 11, 2019 • 7



Tuesday - Friday, July 16-19, 10:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

MARKET DAY SALE! Shop Sale Early for Best Selection Now through Market Day July 20th Follow us on Instagram and Facebook


Saturday, July 20, 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. *very few exclusions, all sales final


3 Days Only! July 18th - 20th 20% OFF PMS 462 C

Saturday, July 20th

Additional 10% off and Early Bird Best Deals of the Day! From 8 a.m. - 10 a.m.

2417 Canterbury Road



summer linen sale! 20-75% OFF

To: Beverly From: Over The Mountain Journal, 205-823-9646 ph., 205-824-1246, fax ALL BED LINENS!!! Date: July 2018

Through July 20th

This is your AD PROOF from the OVER THE MOUNTAIN JOURNAL for the July 12, 2018 issue. Please fax approval or changes to 824-1246.

Please make sure all information is correct, including address and phone number! Canterbury road Thank you for your prompt 2406 attention. Mtn. brook Village


50 Year Anniversary Sale

To: From: Date:

2410 Canterbury Road

20 19

• Byers' Choice Approved Sale To: Marguerite • INSIDE Shop Many Great Sale Items From: Over the Mountain Journal (including silk flowers, lamps, Date: July 2019 serving pieces, pillows and more) This is your AD PROOF FOR OTMJ JULY 11, 2019 issue. Please contact your sales representative as soon as possible to approve your ad or make changes. You may fax approval or changes to 824-1246. • OUTSIDE TENT Please make sure all information is correct, including address and phone number! • $10 Table & 50% Off Table Thursday July 11th-Saturday July 13th

Wesley Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 FAX: 205-824-1246 July 2019 2416 Canterbury Road • 205.879.0691

This is your AD PROOF from the OVER THE MOUNTAIN JOURNAL for the July 11, 2019 issue.

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

AlleySale Thank you for your prompt attention.

The Dande Lion Over The Mountain Journal, phone 205-823-9646, fax 205-824-1246 Backroom will be open Market Day, Saturday July 20th July 2019 Tax-Free Shopping on Market Day This is your AD PROOF from the OVER THE MOUNTAIN JOURNAL for the 2403 issue. Montevallo Road, Mountain or Brook Village 205-871-8994 July 11, 2019 Please fax approval changes to 824-1246.

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

Summer Sale

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Thank you for your prompt attention. 25% OFF STOREWIDE plus BASEMENT BARGAINS (these 3 days only)!

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Saturday, July 20th 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.


some exclusions apply, all sales final, no store credit or gift cards may be used during the sale, no gift wrapping 2402 Montevallo Road | | 205.879.0125


8 • Thursday, July 11, 2019


By Emily Williams

Notice to Proceed.

July is a critical month for Vestavia Hills as the city begins seeing major progress on its $58 million Community Spaces Plan. “The Community Spaces Plan is moving from the planning stage to the

Crosshaven Drive

reality stage,” said city manager Jeff Downes. Downes gave an updated presentation of the plan’s progress at a City Council meeting June 25. A major milestone has been reached in the Wald Park project, with grating to level a portion of the park complete. The next phase of construction is out for bids with the anticipation that a notice to proceed will be obtained by Aug. 1. “In those contracts, there are several key substantial completion dates,” Downes said. “There is an improvement to Waldridge Road, which is part of the project that must be done before the private businesses open up.” Those businesses include a Baumhowers and a Dunkin’ Donuts. With that in mind, Downes relayed estimated completion dates for the park’s substantial projects.  A turn lane into the park on

Journal photos by Jordan Wald

Downes noted that there will be a leisure pool with a zero entry section, which will serve smaller children. The larger pool will be 100-meters and, Downes assured, will be able to accommodate a competitive swim league. A major milestone has been reached in the Wald Park project, with grating to level a portion of the park complete. New businesses set to open near the park include a Baumhowers (below) and a Dunkin’ Donuts.

Vestavia Hills’ Wald Park, Crosshaven Drive Projects Reach Critical Stages

Waldridge Road is set to be completed by Oct. 1. The baseball complex is expected to be finished by March 1 and will include converting one of the larger existing baseball fields into a Miracle Field.  Downes noted that he has experienced firsthand the challenges of finding suitable recreation space in the city for his child with special needs. The field will be the first parks and recreation space in the city designed specifically to accommodate the

needs of children with special needs. Another big project onsite will be constructing the new pool facility, to be completed by May 25. Downes noted that there will be a leisure pool with a zero-entry section, which will serve smaller children. The larger pool will be 100 meters and, Downes assured, will be able to accommodate a competitive swim league. Downs said he hopes the remainder of the work at Wald Park will be completed 455 days following the

By Sam Prickett Many retailers claim to offer a “unique shopping experience,” but Mountain Brook’s new GreenWise Market comes closer than most. The Publix-owned store, which focuses on all-natural and organic products, opened late last month – and it’s one of only a handful of its kind nationwide. The store took over the Lane Parke location formerly occupied by Western Supermarket, which shut down earlier this year. Western’s Mountain Brook and Vestavia Hills locations were purchased by Publix, with the latter slated to become a 35,000-square-foot Publix Super Market. But the company had a different concept in mind for Mountain Brook – something the company says is aimed at both “foodies and health-conscious customers.” GreenWise Market’s focus is on

all-natural and organic products, not unlike chains such as Whole Foods or Lucky’s Market. The store, which opened in late June, also offers some prepared foods and an expanded selection of wine and beer. But the store also is positioning itself as a community hub, said Brenda Reid, Publix’s media and community relations manager. A lounge area, dubbed “Pours,” offers food, drink and a place to work or mingle. “We have wine on tap, as well as we pour wine for customers who would like to purchase a glass of wine,” Reid said. “We also offer beer in the store, where customers can sit and have a glass of beer, enjoy their surroundings, relax, jump on their computer, listen to music on their headsets.” The Pours section also will feature non-alcoholic beverages such as coffee, tea, smoothies and kombucha, and it will include food options such as

Journal photo by Jordan Wald

GreenWise Concept Market Opens in Mountain Brook Village

Mountain Brook’s new GreenWise Market took over the Lane Parke location formerly occupied by Western Supermarket.

sandwiches and pizza. “There’s just a variety of things that will just give the community another gathering place within their own

neighborhood,” Reid said. Publix first attempted to roll out the GreenWise concept in 2007, but it halted a year later after building just

Among Downes’ updates on ongoing city projects, there was one significant roadblock to note. “One of the biggest issues we don’t have complete firm dates on is Crosshaven (Drive),” Downes said. To proceed with the utility work necessary to relocate power and water lines so the drive can be widened, the city has been obtaining verbal agreements from property owners for temporary construction easements. Downes said the city has obtained verbal agreements from property owners for 29 of the 30 properties on which rights of way are needed. The only property owner who hasn’t agreed has been the owner of the Pita Stop.   “The owner of Pita Stop does not feel like he is getting any benefit from this widening and refuses to deal with us, so we are having to take him to court,” Downes said.  The city is coordinating the road work with Jefferson County, which still owns Crosshaven Drive where it intersects with Green Valley Road.  “They are as active on this project as I’ve ever seen them,” Downes said. “They feel like they can work with us in good sync to make this project a reality and move it along as fast as possible.” Taking into account the time it will take to reach a probate court ruling, Downes said the city expects to obtain a Notice to Proceed by Jan. 15. The construction is expected to take 255 days to complete.  “The Community Spaces Plan is becoming a reality and we are either moving toward construction or moving toward the completion of design on almost all of these projects,” Downes said. three such stores in Florida. Many GreenWise products were integrated into the chain’s traditional stores, but the idea of standalone stores didn’t resurface until 2017. The first new location opened in Tallahassee late last year; a Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina, location opened in May. Mountain Brook is the third new location of the resurrected concept. Seven more new locations are planned throughout the Southeast, according to the company’s website. Reid said the Mountain Brook location was chosen partially because of its proximity to other Publix stores in the area. “What we have found is, there are customers who shop at multiple stores, and this gives us an opportunity to offer products that those customers want while still offering them the convenience of having a Publix not too far away,” she said. Mountain Brook’s new GreenWise Market is located at 1000 Jemison Lane.


Thursday, July 11, 2019 • 9


Mooney is Seeking the U.S. Senate With the Promise of Being a Constitutional Conservative By Sam Prickett

Claiming the ‘Outsider’ Territory

How will Mooney set himself apart from such a crowded field? He’s positioning himself as an “outsider” to the Washington establishment, someone who “will be the same guy the day I walk in as the day that I walk out. “I just don’t believe in running for office for its own sake or to seek power,” he said. “I think when people hear our message, that I’m a strong constitutional conservative with a record of standing up to the establishment in Montgomery and (with) the

Photo courtesy Mooney Campaign

Arnold Mooney says he is running for U.S. Senate because he wants to put Alabama – and America – “back to where we need to be.” “This race is about the future,” he said. “I look around and I see a rising tide of socialism on the left, and I personally feel like, if we don’t do something to turn this ship around, we’re not going to leave our children and grandchildren a country that we recognize – and certainly they won’t recognize it. The freedoms we’ve enjoyed can’t be transmitted through the bloodstream. We can’t do an injection. It has to be taught, it has to be protected for each new generation – and that’s why I’m running.” For Mooney, an Indian Springs resident who has represented north Shelby County in the Alabama House of Representatives since 2014, the 2020 Senate race is about reversing the results of 2017’s special Senate election, in which Democrat Doug Jones beat out Republican Roy Moore in a surprise win. Jones was the first Democrat to win an Alabama Senate seat in 25 years. Mooney was involved with that election, but not as a candidate; he chaired the unsuccessful campaign for U.S. Rep. Mo Brooks, who placed third in the Republican primary behind Moore and the then-incumbent senator, Luther Strange. Mooney maintains that Brooks lost only because of external influences who “made a circus out of that election.” “If it hadn’t been for outside forces coming down here and messing around in our primary, we’d have a strong, Constitutional conservative senator,” he said. Now, he wants to fill that role. Mooney joins a slew of Republican candidates looking to challenge Jones for his seat, including U.S. Rep. Bradley Byrne, former Auburn Tigers football head coach Tommy Tuberville, Secretary of State John Merrill, businessman Stanley Adair and Moore. Alabama State Auditor Jim Zeigler, U.S. Rep. Gary Palmer and a handful of other Republicans are mulling running, as well. Former U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions also has not ruled out running for the seat he gave up to accept appointment as U.S. attorney general.

courage and backbone to do it in Washington, we’re going to do very well,” he said. “That’s what I believe Alabama wants now.” Mooney is running on his back-

Mooney joins a slew of Republican candidates looking to challenge Jones for his seat, including U.S. Rep. Bradley Byrne, former Auburn Tigers football head coach Tommy Tuberville, Secretary of State John Merrill, businessman Stanley Adair and Moore. Alabama State Auditor Jim Zeigler, U.S. Rep. Gary Palmer and a handful of other Republicans are mulling running, as well. Former U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions also has not ruled out running for the seat he gave up to accept appointment as U.S. attorney general. ground in the state Legislature. He said that his vote against Gov. Kay Ivey’s 10-cent gas tax hike, which was signed into law in March, shows his willingness to stand up for conservative values, even against Republican leadership. Mooney was one of 18 Republican no votes in the state House. “We believe very strongly that there needed to be not just a tax to help infrastructure, but it needed to be transparent and accountable,” Mooney said. “We obviously needed competition, because competition is the mother of invention and that’s what gives us the opportunity to move forward very well.” He also mentions several bills he has sponsored, including one this year that would have provided an income tax refund check-off for contributions to We Build the Wall Inc., a nonprofit organization dedicated to fundraising for President Donald Trump’s pro-

posed southern border wall. That bill and its sister bill in the state Senate bogged down in April. Still, Mooney sees it as a declaration of his priorities. “I’m going to fight for the president’s agenda, and a big part of that is building the wall and fighting for American workers,” he said. “That’s what he ran on, that’s what he was elected on, and it’s time to build that wall and protect our nation’s southern border.” • Mooney has also been a vocal opponent of abortion and voted in • favor of the controversial “Human • Life Protection Act,” which was signed into law by Gov. Kay Ivey in • May and drew national controversy for placing a near-total ban on abortions in Alabama, with no exceptions for rape or incest. “I’m a person who’s deeply dedicated to protecting life from conception to natural death, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” he said. The abortion debate is a wedge issue for Mooney. He uses it as an argument that Doug Jones is not a moderate centrist, as Jones has often claimed he is. “My suggestion to you or to anyone else would be to look at the record of Doug Jones and what he’s voted for,” he said. “He’s voted against life, he’s voted for abortion up to literally the end of the process of birth. Doug Jones’ record is clear. He is not a conservative. He’s not a moderate. He’s a liberal and that’s where he stands, and that’s who supports To: From: him.” Throughout his campaign, Mooney also hopes to highlight issues includ- Date: ing the “great, great threat” of China, which he said means “getting serious about our national debt … so we can deal with China diplomatically, and with trade as well.” One promise Mooney makes is that, if Alabamians do send him to Washington, he won’t stay there for too long. He’s adamant that he will push for Congressional term limits, even if it might be a futile effort. “It’s absolutely ridiculous that 70% of the American people support term limits, yet we can’t get a vote on it,” he said. “I’m going to make sure that we get one so that everybody in Washington, D.C., is put on record. If I have to, I’ll read the phone book on the Senate floor.”

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LIFE Hanna Antiques Turns 40 10 • Thursday, July 11, 2019

Small Refinishing Shop Evolved Into Multi-Dealer Trove of Treasures

By June Mathews

appreciation for the quality of antiques, many of which they now have in their own homes. And these days, John is making his own living in antiques by conducting estate and moving sales. “He’s got the bug bad, just like his dad and me” his mother said. But she sees major differences in the antiques world her son is starting in as opposed to the one she took on 40 years ago. “The internet has changed everything,” she said. “It’s expanded our knowledge about collectibles and their value, and it’s given us the ability to sell online. But even though some customers go on the internet to make purchases, the physical hunt

‘The internet has changed everything. It’s expanded our knowledge about collectibles and their value ... But even though some customers go on the internet to make purchases, the physical hunt will always be more fun.’ Journal photo by Jordan Wald

Celebrating the past comes naturally to Bonny Hanna Picard. It’s been her business for 40 years. The founder and president of Hanna Antiques, Picard has long lived her passion through buying, selling and often restoring treasures from bygone eras. Still in her 20s when in 1979 she established a small furniture refinishing business in an oversized building on Magnolia Avenue, she used the extra space to start an antique mall. And the rest, as the proverbial “they” say, is history. But the seeds that grew into a favorite for local antique lovers actually were planted elsewhere. “I was working in Memphis and would come home a lot because I was lonely and didn’t have many friends there,” said Picard, who grew up in Center Point. “On one of my trips home, I bought an old floor lamp, took it back to Memphis, tried to strip it and made a mess. “Up the street from where I lived were four little shotgun houses that were antique and refinishing shops. So I took the lamp to one of those and asked the old man there to refinish it. He said, ‘Heck no, you do it yourself,’ and he showed me how. After that, I went home, put on some old clothes and got to work.” In the coming months, the old man, who Picard called Uncle Bill, taught her how to repair, clamp, glue and refinish old furniture. In return, she cooked vegetables for him on Sundays. “I later quit my job and moved back to Birmingham, intending to go back to school. But that just wasn’t my forte,” Picard said. So she rented an apartment in an old Cliff Road mansion and, with her landlord’s permission, began refinishing furniture in the basement. To help make ends meet, she got a job waiting tables at a downtown restaurant at night. “I would hand out my cards and talk with people at the restaurant about my refinishing business,” she said. “In fact, it was one of my customers who mentioned seeing a ‘for rent’ sign on a 10,000-square-foot building on Magnolia Avenue, and that’s how I wound up


Bonny Hanna Picard was still in her 20s when she established a small furniture refinishing business in an oversized building on Magnolia Avenue in 1979. Starting out, Picard sold everything she owned to pay for a stripping tank, a compressor and tools, and set up shop as The Final Finish.

there for 10 years.” Hanna Antiques moved to its current 7th Avenue location in 1989. Starting out, Picard sold everything she owned – including her prized Datsun 280ZX sports car – to pay for a stripping tank, a compressor and tools, and she set up shop as The Final Finish. Before long, a customer who was a dealer at a Huntsville antique mall suggested that Picard put the spare space in her cavernous quarters to similar use, and the business became Hanna Antiques. “The antique mall concept was something new to Birmingham, and people really gravitated to it quickly,” Picard said. “Over the years, I’ve had dealers do so well that they started their own antique stores.”

A Family Affair

Picard readily credits much of her early success to the willingness of family members and friends to help. Her parents and sister worked at the store for free and were also dealers. And when she married Sandy Picard, he came to work at the store, too. The two would travel to England several times a year to hunt for furniture and smaller items to ship back to the store, and her husband particularly enjoyed discovering the history of things they bought. In the late 1990s, both Picard’s husband and mother passed away within a year of each other, leaving her to run the business by herself and raise her two children, Lily and John. The kids grew up in the store and developed an

will always be more fun.” The types of goods bought and sold, said Picard, is changing, too. “Baby boomers are downsizing, so I’m getting a lot of merchandise that way, but many of the younger generation don’t want their parents’ antiques or hand-me-downs,” she said. “They like the simpler look as seen on HGTV and in the decorating magazines. But I’m starting to see more young couples who are first time homebuyers, pushing little ones in strollers and purchasing furniture, rugs and chandeliers.” Hanna Antiques rents space to 100 antique dealers in a two-story, 27,000-square-foot building. In addition to booth space, 39 showcases display a vast array of jewelry and collectibles. Styles range from French and English to country and mid-century modern. “I have a lot of out-of-towners who come to UAB, and they’re amazed that I still have the old stuff – and that it is good stuff. People are really put off by all the brand-new merchandise that has filtered into other antique stores,” Picard said. “To me, this is not just work; it’s fun, and I still love it to this day,” she said. “Looking back, I can hardly believe it’s been 40 years.” Visit Hanna Antiques at 2424 7th Ave. South, Birmingham, or call 323-6036. For more information, go to

Photo courtesy Mrs. Alabama America

Hoover’s Boger to Represent Alabama in Mrs. America Competition

At the Mrs. Alabama America 2019 competition, held June 22, Hoover resident Elizabeth Boger was crowned Mrs. Alabama. The pageant took place at the Pell City Center for Education and Performing Arts. Boger competed with married women from across the state in interview, swimsuit and evening gown competitions for the title. Boger works as a marketing director and is married to Mark Boger, with whom she has two sons. She will now move on to the national competition, receiving an expenses-paid trip to represent Alabama in the Mrs. America Competition in August at the Westgate Casino and Resort in Las Vegas. The winner of the national competition will move on to compete in the Mrs. World Pageant. From left, first alternate Michelle Abraham of Clanton, Mrs. Alabama America 2019 Elizabeth Boger of Hoover and second alternate Jessalyn Adams of Pleasant Grove.

Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Alabama, right, presented Warren Griggs with his award during the Congressional Award Gold Medal Ceremony, held at the United States Capitol Visitor Center in Washington, D.C.

Warren Griggs Earns Congressional Gold Medal

Warren Griggs, a Hoover High School graduate and University of Alabama Huntsville sophomore, recently was presented a Congressional Gold Medal. Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Alabama, presented Griggs with his award during the Congressional Award Gold Medal Ceremony, held at the United States Capitol Visitor Center in Washington, D.C. Griggs is the only recipient from

Thursday, July 11, 2019 • 11

LIFE Alabama in 2019, having also earned his silver and bronze medals this year. The Congressional Award is Congress’ award for young Americans. Each level of participation involves setting goals in four program areas: voluntary public service, personal development, physical fitness and expedition/exploration. Griggs earned the awards by completing 580 hours of public service. He also challenged himself to track and increase his fitness levels by planning and leading his Boy Scouts of America local Troop 21 in Bluff Park on two high adventure trips to Canada and New Mexico. The Canadian expedition, commonly called Northern Tier, required logistical planning to move 41 boys and men by bus from Birmingham to Atikokan, Ontario, for a 100-plus mile canoe trip across the lakes in the Quetico Provincial Park. The New Mexico trip involved organizing travel for 45 Troop members by bus from Birmingham to the Philmont Scout Ranch in Cimarron, New Mexico for a more than 100-mile hike through the mountains.

Krauss of Troop 53 Earns Eagle Scout Rank

William Crawford Krauss achieved the rank of Eagle Scout in February and was honored May 26 at a Court of Honor ceremony at St Peter’s Anglican Church. Krauss is a member of Troop 53 under Scoutmasters George Elliott and Franklin Bradford. During his scouting career, Krauss

has earned the Arrow of Light Award as a Cub Scout and 22 merit badges as a Boy Scout, serving his troop in various leadership roles, including instructor and patrol leader. A highlight of his time as a scout was serving on a sailing William Crawford vessel at the Krauss Ciganka High Adventure Camp in the Bahamas. For his Eagle project, Krauss converted 33 feet of pebble path in the Alabama Veterans Memorial Park in Birmingham into a path of pavers suitable for people with mobility challenges. A May 2019 graduate of Mountain Brook High School, Krauss was a member of the National Honor Society, section leader of the drumline for the Mountain Brook High School Marching Band and section leader of the percussion section of the Mountain Brook Symphonic Band. He attends St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church. He will attend the University of Mississippi in the fall. Krauss is the son of Drs. William and Erin Krauss of Mountain Brook; and the grandson of Mary Ann Krauss and the late Dr. William R. Krauss of Columbus, Ohio, and Thomas and Mary Lorsung of Columbia, Maryland.

Knights and Scouts Team Up for Annual Flag Retirement

Members of Boy Scout Troops 97 and 237 lent a helping hand to the Knights of Columbus Fourth Degree Assembly at a flag retirement ceremony June 8 at Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church in Homewood. Members of the community were invited to turn in flags to be retired the week before the event. Throughout the ceremony, Scouts tore the flags and bundled them. The bundled flags were then ceremoniously burned by Knights of Columbus members.

Right, Michael Hardin, below Edward Boackle and Lucas Garrett.


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12 • Thursday, July 11, 2019



Putting Fun in the Fourth Over the Mountain areas celebrated Independence Day with food, music and fundraising for worthy causes. JOURNAL PHOTOS BY JORDAN WALD


OLS Brian and Leah Allen with Hayes and Caroline Allen and Charlie and Casey Lassiter.

Vestavia Hills Hosts 38th Annual I Love America Night The city of Vestavia Hills kicked off Independence Day celebrations early, hosting the 38th annual I Love America Night on June 27 at Vestavia Hills High School. Organized by Vestavia Hills’ Parks and Recreation Department and Chamber of Commerce, festivities included a kids’ area by Vestavia Hills United Methodist Church, a Shades Mountain Baptist Church Pops in the Park concert and a family-friendly movie.

Homewood Fourth of July

Downtown Homewood served as the celebration spot for the city’s annual Fourth of July Festival, with two blocks of 18th Street South and one block of 29th Avenue South accommodating carnival rides, inflatables, food and an ideal view the Alabama Bicentennial Fireworks show at Vulcan Park and Museum.

VESTAVIA Caroline Youngblood, Charlotte Kellogg, Audrey Kellogg and Ella Youngblood.

UAB Cheryle Cooke and Savannah Hudson.

Red, White and Brew

The 3rd annual Red, White and Brew was hosted July 3 by Heninger, Garrison, Davis LLC and raised funds for the Birmingham Educational Foundation. Patriotic festivities included live performances by Legal Limit, Bailey Ingle and Lamont Landers Band; kids’ activities; and a variety of cuisines served by local food trucks.

OLS Fourth of July

Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church hosted its 70th annual Fourth of July Festival on July 4, serving up more than 6,500 pounds of barbecue, snow cones, a dunking booth, inflatables, a DJ and more. In addition, the Trash and Treasure rummage sale offered approximately 10,000 items for sale. The funds raised at the event support local charities, as well as the church and its school.

UAB Fourth of July Shindig

The University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Collegiate Recovery Community celebrated Independence Day with a Fourth of July Shindig on the New Freshman Residence Hall lawn. Alcohol-free fun included free Jim ‘N Nick’s barbecue, live music and a great view of the Alabama Bicentennial Fireworks show.

OLS Anita Tsimpides and Skip Taylor with Kai.

HOMEWOOD Ezra, Kayla, Aliyah, Caleb and Levi Hughes.


HOMEWOOD Brad, Coco and Holly Kennedy.

Thursday, July 11, 2019 • 13


HOMEWOOD Carnival rides in downtown Homewood.

HOMEWOOD Neely and Amanda Pinson.

RED, WHITE AND BREW Stan Marks, Gayle Douglas, Julie Fritz, Ashley Holt, Pete Scarmoutsos and Ryan Welch.

HOMEWOOD John, Oliver and Kimberly Bridges.

RED, WHITE AND BREW Bernard and Katherine Zieman with Anna Gray Sarcone and Daniel Mims.

VESTAVIA Phoebe McClain, Ella Smith, Riley McClain and Anna Harmon.



14 • Thursday, July 11, 2019



Journal photos by Jordan Wald


From left: Cissy Jackson, Robert Aland, Randall Woodfin, Dixon Brook and Chris Pfefferkorn. Renovations include a new front entrance with ticketing booths, a large gift shop and a Welcome Plaza.

Birmingham Zoo Dedicates New Arrival Experience The Birmingham Zoo’s new Arrival Experience was dedicated June 27 in a presentation including city of Birmingham officials, as well as zoo staff and board members. Renovations include a new front entrance with ticketing booths, a large gift shop and a Welcome Plaza. The project was part of the facility’s Renew the Zoo Campaign, which includes now-complete updates to the entrance and the new park area, as well as the construction of the Asian Passage exhibit. Keynote speakers included Birmingham Zoo President and CEO Chris Pfefferkorn, board Chairman Robert Aland and Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin.

The facility hosted an additional grand opening celebration for the community on June 29.

Zoo Welcomes Two New Male Elephants

Gadze, above and right, with Luti explore their new neighborhood.

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Birmingham Zoo has two new additions to its Trails of Africa, Gadze and Luti, two young male African elephants. Guests were able to get a sneak preview of the elephants on July 3 as the bulls took their first looks at their new enclosure. Both bulls arrived at the zoo in late June and have been living in their behind-the-scenes area while they acclimated to the conditions and environment of Birmingham Zoo. Gadze, age 10, and Luti, age 9, hail from San Diego Zoo Safari Park, which along with the zoo is accredited by The Association of Zoos and Aquariums.


Thursday, July 11, 2019 • 15


‘I’m With Mike’

Foundation board members, from left: Frank Brocato, Judd Harwood, Anna Harwood, Ed Meyerson, Charles Herman and Lisa Roth.

5K Raises Money for Prostate Cancer Research

Just Received New Shipment

More than 350 signed up to participate in the I’m With Mike 5K, held June 15 starting at Little Donkey in Homewood. The annual fundraiser supported the Mike Slive Foundation for Prostate Cancer Research, which supports prostate cancer patients and groundbreaking research. Big winners in the overall race were Arthur Langley, first; Benjamin McGlothlin, second; and Beau Bevis, third.


FREE MOVE-IN! JUST MENTION THIS AD! Sonny Adkins and Jenni Horne.

Taylor Crawford, Will Lochomy and Jennifer Crawford.

To: From:


Attic Antiques Over The Mountain Journal, PHONE: 205-823-9646 FAX: 205-824-1246 Date: June 2019

This is your AD PROOF from the OVER THE MOUNTAIN JO July 11, 2019 issue. Please fax approval or changes to

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Thank you for your prompt attention



Journal photos by Jordan Wald

16 • Thursday, July 11, 2019

Tony Rodio, Kathryn Nicholas, Lynn Brown and Lina Galvis.

Alison McCaleb and Taylor Sides.


BMA Hosts First Installment of Art on the Rocks Summer Event Series


ollywood Glam served as the theme for the June 14 Art on the Rocks event at the Birmingham Museum of Art. Celebrating the current exhibition “Ways of Seeing: Fashion,” various art-inspired features celebrated all things fashion. Music was provided by headlining musical act Con Brio, while DJ Gina Tollese provided music in the museum’s cafe. Throughout the evening, attendees could take part in an interactive mural by Paul Cordes Wilm in the Bromberg’s Lounge. In addition, local artist Mitchell Walters created works of art inspired by fashion in the Sculpture Garden.

Clare Taylor and Samantha Picker.

Above, Mitchell Walters. Right, Gio Garcia, Joe Gamble, Austyn Martin, Garrett Gamble and Ethan Tibbs.

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Journal photos by Jordan Wald


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Smile-A-Mile’s junior board of directors hosted the 13th Annual Funky Monkey on June 21 at Regions Field to raise funds for the organization’s

Lindsey Smith, Lindsay Joe and Fairfax Davis.

Children’s of Alabama. Patients on the floor also shined lights out of the windows. Attendees at the event could see the ribbon and flashed their cell phone lights back at the children. According to organization officials, it was a special experience and helped the attendees make a direct connection with the children they are supporting through Funky Monkey.

Bruce and Beth Hopper.

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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 60 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 Joseph Braswell would be a privilege to serve you.

Journal photos by Jordan Wald

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

Members of the zoo’s junior board in attendance included, from left, Holton Bell, Joe Gribbin, Jayna Goedecke, Ashley Robertson, Tim Hennessy and Thomas Nelson .

Mix and Flamingle

Tails in the Trails Raises Funds for Zoo’s New Flamingo Exhibit

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The Birmingham Zoo came alive on the evening of May 31 for the ninth annual Tails in the Trails. Hosted by the zoo’s junior board, guests were welcomed to the Trails of Africa by the zoo’s animal residents for a tropical-themed celebration. Live music was performed by Nationwide Coverage, hors d’oeuvres from 12 local restaurants were served and a signature “Pink Flamingo” cocktail paid homage to the Trails of Africa’s avian residents. In addition, a silent auction featured a variety of items, including a Five Star Plantation fishing trip for two, a one-week vacation in Costa Rica, memorabilia, restaurant experiences, art and jewelry. Funds raised at the event will help fund the zoo’s new interactive flamingo habitat. ❖

Ivy Duggan and Melissa Bell with Theresa and Jay Friedman.

Haley and Matt Scallions.

Katie Nelson and Jesalyn McCurry.

Amanda Golz and Sara Higginbotham.

Birmingham Zoo President and CEO Chris and Teresa Pfefferkorn.



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A Universe of Stories


Thursday, July 11, 2019 • 19 Elizabeth, Brett, Eden and Emery Livesay.

Homewood Library Dedicates Summer Reading Program to Bicentennial

Nicole and Zelie B. Crawford.

Journal photos by Jordan Wald

The Homewood Public Library celebrated the beginning of its Bicentennial-inspired summer reading program May 30 with an evening event. This year’s program, “Alabama Has a Universe of Stories,” celebrates the state’s ongoing bicentennial celebrations, with Alabama-inspired stories showcasing everything from the Civil Rights Movement to space exploration. The kick-off party included a variety of activities for children ages infant to sixth grade, as well as an acrobatic basketball-dunking showcase by Gutsy the Flying Fox. ❖

Maria Hopkins, Astrid Hopkins and Frannie Goodwin.

Gutsy the Flying Fox.

SPRING VALLEY SCHOOL “Spring Valley School is Birmingham’s premier haven for students with learning differences such as Dyslexia and ADHD, championing the multi-sensory and whole-child approach to education in a small class setting where students feel safe, supported, and nurtured. At Spring Valley, we believe in a continuous loop of giving within the SVS community through family volunteering, corporate partnerships, and community events. We are grateful for our sponsors who have generously invested in the bright futures of SVS students and inspired our families to help others!”

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20 • Thursday, July 11, 2019



The 60 Years In Between

On June 1, members of the Shades Valley High School Class of 1959 celebrated their 60th reunion at Vestavia County Club. One hundred classmates, spouses and guests were greeted by a restored 1957 Chevrolet, owned by Walter Russell. The two-door car had a black hardtop with red interior, the Shades Valley Mounties school colors. Class members from throughout Alabama enjoyed renewing friendships with classmates from Georgia, Mississippi, Florida, North Carolina, Iowa, Texas and Arizona.   The Reunion Committee, led by cochairmen Jack Armistead and Paul Henderson, began planning the reunion in spring 2018. Using social media, they were able to locate 300 members of the original class of 340.  Each classmate who attended received a detailed scrapbook compiled by Harold Hagler, with class pictures and answers to a questionnaire “What I did after Shades Valley” returned by 120 class members. The booklet featured an “In Memory” section memorializing the 80 known deceased members, along with a listing and pictures of the administration and faculty.  Every guest received an uncirculated

1959 penny and a chance to draw for one of three glass bricks from the “old” Shades Valley. The pennies and the bricks were contributed by Celeste and David Cisco.  Bill Clark, class chaplin, led the blessing, and Donald Sweeney, student body president, gave a moving tribute to deceased members of the class of 1959, including Paul Henderson, who unexpectedly passed away in May.  The Reunion Committee met regularly. Members included Jerry and Linda Campbell, who decorated the ballroom tables in red and black with white hydrangeas; Clark; Kappie Chapman Dunn; Hagler, who also produced a slideshow of classmates from the Tower yearbook and challenged the members with a Shades Valley trivia quiz; Lynne Puryear Kent; Rush McInnis; Charles Money; Patti Patterson Stanford; Woody Strozier; Celeste and David Cisco; Russell Cunningham; Ann Rolling Elliott; Nick Hauser; Ann Dial McMillan; Danny Markstein; Kenneth Perrine; Betty Owens Snoddy; and Donald Sweeney.  In 1959, Shades Valley was the only Over the Mountain high school, and

Photos submitted

Shades Valley High School Class of ’59 Celebrates 60th Reunion

Above, June Hood Carpenter, Bill Clark, Paula Ford Birchall, Jack Armistead, Paula Huffstutler Allen, Richard Cross and Brenda Ford Propst. Below, Harold Hagler, Memory Hagler, Martha Palmer, Charles Hare and Mona Hare.

students from Irondale, Mountain Brook, Cahaba Heights, Vestavia Hills, Bluff Park and Homewood attended grades nine through 12. Out-of-town attendees included Jan Falkner Graves and David of Lake Toxaway, North Carolina; Bobby

“Birddog” Smith, Dallas; Paula Huffstutler Allen, Marietta, Georgia; Linda Kelly Garner, Venice, Florida; Charles Yeldell, Scottsdale, Arizona; Jimmy Nichols, Pensacola, Florida; Pat McGrath, Hickory, North Carolina; Cookie Daugherty Keller,

Madison; and Betty Burton Barton, Ames, Iowa. Amy Montz took candid photos and the class pictures. Also enjoying the evening were Susie Fullerton Anderson, Dicki Boykin Arn, Paula Ford Birchall, Dena Fortenberry Bowden and Travis, June Hood Carpenter and Myles, Joan Lunsford Clark and Norman Glass, Alethea Porter ColeTyson and Gary, Richard Cross, Ted Doster, Peggy Fisher Douglass and John, Byron Driver, Judy Jacobs Eanes, Bruce Eich and Sharon, Grace Carmichael Finkel and Joe, Bobby Keith, Kitty Ribe Melvin, Kay Strozier Owen, Elwyn Palmer, Diana Williams Quinones, Margaret Webb Reed and Karl, Leigh Robinson, Jimmy Sizemore and Brenda, Virginia Brush Stevens and Johnny Green. ❖

Coffee and Conversation

dent of scholarship; Ellen Tucker, recording secretary; Miriam Morris, corresponding secretary; Roberta Atkinson, treasurer; Jeannie Bradford, historian; and Laura Bryan, parliamentarian. Committee chairs for the new year include Angie Holder, hospitality; Linda Griggs, bylaws; Martha Mims, newsletter; Lesley DeRamus and Fran Howard, yearbook; Amy Roberts, publicity; Powell Owens, addressing/mailing; Michele Smith and Susanne Thomas, spring luncheon; Elizabeth Broughton, Christmas party; and Pat Grant, education support and benevolence. The investment trustees for the Guild are Becky Keyes, Linda Griggs and Cheree Carlton. ❖

Photos submitted

The Guild of the Birmingham Music Club held its annual Membership Coffee on May 3 at the home of Kathy Miller. Guests were greeted with coffee and refreshments as incoming President Michelle Rushing welcomed new members to the organization and expressed appreciation to outgoing President Laura Bryan. Marsha Drennen installed the new officers for 2019-2020: Linda Cooper, executive vice president; Beth Adams, Nancy Canada and Mary-Noel Sellers, vice presidents of projects; Anna Williams, vice president of placement; Kim Strickland, vice president of programs and location; Elise Warren, vice president of membership; Margery Whatley, vice presi-

Katie Sellers, Michelle Rushing, Kathy Miller and Anne Carey.

Journal photos by Jordan Wald

Birmingham Music Club Installs New Officers

Ann and Sam Todd.

Jess and Carol Bullock.

Lauren and Preston Kelley.

Natalie Harrison and Joni Moore.

Rachel Cowden and Faith Cowden.

Art With Heart

Studio By the Tracks Hosts Annual Art Auction Fundraiser The work of more than 200 artists was on display and up for auction June 9 at Studio By the Tracks’ annual Art From the Heart gala. Funds raised through the event benefit the studio, which serves as both a workspace and gallery for adult artists with autism spectrum disorder. Held at the Theodore, both silent and live auctions featured artwork, while a cash-and-carry section included hundreds of items created by Studio By

the Tracks artists. In addition to purchasing opportunities, the event included food by the Happy Catering Company, beer by Good People Brewing Company and wine from Pinnacle Imports. ❖


Summer Reading


Thursday, July 11, 2019 • 21

Vestavia Hills Library Kicks off Summer Reading Program On May 30, the Vestavia Hills Public Library celebrated the start of this year’s summer reading program. Children’s musician Roger Day performed for a crowd of kids in the morning and in the evening. After the morning’s performance, Kona Ice was served. Mosquito Burritos, inspired by one of Day’s famous songs, were served at the evening concert. ❖

Journal photos by Jordan Wald

Camille, Kyra and Hugh Anderson.

Vivi, Susan and Sarah Wintermantel.

Lilo and Leo Aljoher.

Luke and Kimberlee Brooks.

Far From Antiquated


The Antiquarian Society of Birmingham concluded the club year with an installation of officers and a luncheon honoring retiring and incoming officers at the Greystone home of member Margie Preston. The luncheon was chaired by Susan Dasher and Kay Wooten. Greeting guests were Cece Dillard and Barbara Klyce. The invocation was given by Rebecca Mason. President Linda Stewart presided and presented thank-you gifts to all who served on the executive board during the year. Parliamentarian Elouise Williams, assisted by guest Anna Williams, installed the 2019-20 officers: President Diana Turnipseed, First Vice President and program chair Becky Keyes, second Vice President and yearbook chair Lucy Richardson, Corresponding Secretary Carolyn Delk, Recording Secretary Amy Tully, Treasurer Judy Long and Historian Dottie Hoover. Following a report on the April spring trip to Natchez and the presentation of a gift to the outgoing president, a picnic lunch was served on the terrace and in the rose gardens. Other members in attendance

Photo courtesy Antiquarian Society of Birmingham

Antiquarian Society Installs New Officers Following Spring Trip to Natchez

Linda Stewart, Dottie Hoover, Judy Long, Amy Tully, Lucy Richardson, Becky Keyes, and Diana Turnipseed.

were: Barbara Baird, Redonda Broom, Kirke Cater, Elaine Clark, Kay Clark, Angela Comfort, Carolyn Drennen, Marsha Duell, Jane Ellis, Marjorie Forney, Joann Fox, Anne Gibbons, Kay Grayson, Annie Green, Charmion Hain, Judith Hand, Jean Hendrickson, Sandra Holley, Sara Jackson, Annalisa Jager, Mary Ann Jones, Rusty Kirkpatrick, Lena Knight, Janet Krueger, Anne Lamkin, Lesley Lewis, Cookie Logan, Nancy Mason, Mary Jean Myers, Betty

Northen, Meredith Peeples, Beverly Phillips, Helen Pittman, Gail Pugh, Lucianne Pugh, Carolyn Reich, Carla Roberson, Lynda Robertson, Carolyn Satterfield, Janeal Shannon, Nan Skier, Nancy Skinner, Jan Smith, Rhetta Tatum, Rebekah Taylor, Nan Teninbaum, Jean Vaughan, Barbara Wall, Laura Wallace, Liz Warren, Lynda Whitney, Margie Williams and Janis Zeanah. Guests were Julie Bean and Naomi Cunningham. ❖

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Birmingham Mountain Radio’s Dru Cunningham Backensto opened the doors to her and her husband, Eric’s, condo overlooking the Magic City.


Every Picture Tells A Story

Modern Condo in the Sky Is Backdrop for Local DJs Antiques and Art Collection



ou may not know her face, but you probably know her voice. Dru Cunningham Backensto is Birmingham Mountain Radio’s DJ host of the “Flipback Lunch,” which airs weekdays during her 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. shift, and the soon-tolaunch “She Show,” featuring all female artists and dynamic local women as guests. Dru opened the doors to her and her husband, Eric’s, gorgeous condo overlooking the Magic City. It’s an eclectic mix of modernmeets-classical with layers of fascinating objets d’art, intriguing collections and antiques galore. It seems almost every item has a story. “My parents were antiques dealers,” said Dru, “and I hated being dragged to antiques shops all around the country. But then, when I got my own place that I could decorate, I changed my mind. I used to be all mid-century modern in the ‘90s, before it got popular, but I’ve gotten away from that. I like a tiny touch of it now.” The obsession with antiques is not one-sided. “We both loved antiques,” said Dru. “That was one thing we liked about each other when we met.” When they got married and were looking for a place to call their own, they initially wanted a home that captured that antique aesthetic. They had fallen in love with a big Victorian-style house, circa 1904, in Southside. But their Realtor asked them to be open-minded, showing them this 2,300-square-foot condo atop Red

Science meets art in this Mountain just above Valley Avenue. “It was very 1980s, really cheesy” mechanical piece called a Wanderers Orrery made said Dru. “But it had this great view by Science Art in Boulder, of downtown Birmingham.” Colorado. The planets, “It has good bones, and with suns and moons are each Dru’s imagination, she could really different semiprecious see what it could become,” said Eric. stones. “And we had a good contractor who listened and was creative and made it feel more open.” The modernized space sets the perfect backdrop for their antiques, vintage pieces and contemporary art. Upon entry, large works of modern art capture the imagination and a glass chandelier from the 1800s, which has been converted from gas to electric, casts a warm glow from its naked Edison bulbs. An ornate antique French server near the entry is

See DRU, page 24



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Thursday, July 11, 2019 • 23

24 • Thursday, July 11, 2019



Above, the petals of the lotus lamp at the end of the couch open and close. Dru’s new favorite lamp a mid-century modern glass orb, sits in the living room window. Below, traditional antiques and Art Deco elements intermingle with fun vintage accents in this bedroom for a truly eclectic feel.

DRU From page 22

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where the couple keeps keys and mail, but it also houses some of their most interesting collectibles, such as a pair of pre-Revolutionary War flintlock pistols and the oldest item they own, a tool from 2000 BC for scraping and eating. The living room is anchored by a modern sofa in white that complements the timeworn patina of the antiques, including an Old English bagatelle game table that doubles as a coffee table. A gorgeous Biedermeier secretary, circa 1820s, boasts a rich burled mahogany and opens to reveal little drawers and cubbies. A hall tree intended for coats, hats, and canes features an antique top hat made of beaver fur, a ‘30s umbrella and a cane made of shark vertebrae.

Over the wall of windows, a decorative shield from the Ottoman empire serves as the statement piece, and Dru’s beloved mid-century modern lamp, discovered on a recent trip to


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Vancouver, Canada, is proudly displayed on a side table. “I carried it like a baby on the plane,” she said of the orb-like lamp. “We almost thought we’d have to buy an extra plane seat for it. I have lamp issues,” she said jokingly of her penchant for great lamps. “I have clock issues,” said Eric. All of the clocks in the condo are from the 1800s. Bones and drawThe one in the ers lend an air living room is an of mystery to this English casecorner of Eric’s ment clock. study. “It’s like a grandfather clock where the guts of the clock are outside of the case,” he said. The exposed mechanics are themselves a work of art. Nearby, a Venetian glass mirror hangs above the double-sided fireplace that connects the living room to the wood-paneled study. The study is where Eric’s collections and curios shine. An antique textile serves as the backdrop for a beautiful shield depicting the Massacre of the Innocents from the New Testament. A bonsai tree is displayed atop an antique movie camera tripod. An old map chest and ship’s sextant suggest age-old nautical



Above, this classic tufted leather couch seems new when compared to the decorative shield depicting the Massacre of the Innocents. Below, white subway tiles and a black engineered marble gleam in the Backensto’s kitchen.

adventures. A solar system created by a modern artist features planets that are precisely sized and moving at the accurate rate in relation to one another. The beautifully colored spines of antique books line the shelves and stir the imagination. On one shelf, Eric opens a cylinder music box from 1880s France that plays a tune, the tines popping against the slowly turning cylinder.

‘He’s [Eric] a biomedical engineer in the medical device industry. So, he can fix anything from antique clocks and music boxes to plumbing problems to wiring up my crazy lamps to high-tech neurosurgery imaging equipment.’ “I got a deal on this one because it was broken. So, I brought it home and fixed it,” he said. “Same with this German bird box.” He presses a button on the bird box and a circular lid pops open, a bird pops up, flapping its wings and tweeting. Then it goes back into its hole and the lid closes. Simple, yet amusing.

Jack of All Fixes

It should come as no surprise that a man who helps walk brain surgeons through the use of surgical machinery has no problem repairing an automated music box from 19th century France. “He’s a biomedical engineer in the medical

device industry,” said Dru. “So, he can fix anything from antique clocks and music boxes to plumbing problems to wiring up my crazy lamps to high-tech neurosurgery imaging equipment.” He used that same creativity in an uber-cool statement piece at the end of their hallway, which is a spot they pass every day. It’s a ceiling medallion-turned-installation art. “We got the idea to feature it as art with lighting from behind,” said Eric. The circular medallion with cherubs in bas relief seems to float in front of the wall and a cool white neon glow emerges from its edges. The duo had to place boundaries on their antiques obsession. “It used to be a Saturday activity, but we had to cut back,” said Dru. “Here’s the rule: If you see something you love and you just have to have it, you must get rid of something in order to bring it in,” said Eric. “It just gets too cluttered in here otherwise.” Dru loves how quiet the condo is. “It’s got concrete slabs above and below, so we never hear a thing,” she said. “And it’s got a heck of a view.” Eric’s favorite thing about their condo? Without hesitation, he said, “It’s got Dru in it!”

Harris Doyle Homes Becomes a Liberty Park Builder Liberty Park has added a new builder. Houses by Harris Doyle Homes are now available in the neighborhood. “Liberty Park is a distinguished community, that has an expectation of excellence that coincides with Harris Doyle’s standard of home building,” said Harris Doyle Homes Chief Development Officer Brooks Harris. “We are honored for the opportunity to join this close-knit community as a builder, and we look forward to helping further develop and enrich the neighborhood for its residents.” Harris Doyle will offer 41 new-homes for sale in Liberty Park starting in the $400,000’s. Floor plans range from three to five bedrooms and 2,400 to 4,000 square feet. The Birmingham-based builder’s team works with home buyers on each stage of the home buying and building process. As part of the process, home buyers can work hands-on with one of Harris Doyle’s interior designers. The in-depth design meetings take place in the company’s design studio, which provides a space for future homeowners to view available selections. For more information, visit

Thursday, July 11, 2019 • 25

Avast Realty

Avast Realty, LLC has quickly risen to be one of the top brokerages in central Alabama since being established in 2012, and continues to expand throughout the Southeast. After shaking things up in the Birmingham real estate market and pioneering the way in commission structures, they experienced recordbreaking growth that rapidly spread to the surrounding markets. Their most recent office has opened in the City Center of Vestavia. The list of accomplishments continues to grow, as does the agent roster and closed transaction count. Avast Realty is in the top 4% of sales per the Birmingham Association of Realtors and has been named one of the Top 20 Real Estate companies by the Birmingham Business Journal. They have been named one of the Top Local Real Estate Companies via Top Local and are on track to beat their $120 million in real estate sales from last year. “Our agents are equipped with the latest tools and technology to maximize success for both their clients and their personal business,” said CEO, Randy Brooks. With divisions specializing in Residential Sales, New Construction Builds, Investment Properties, and Commercial Sales, Avast agents have access to an incomparable infrastructure of contacts and knowledge allowing them to confidently navigate all aspects of an ever-changing real estate market with ease. “When a client is searching for an agent, it is important that they find someone who is taking advantage of advanced technology,” said Brooks. “You don’t want an agent who just throws a sign in the yard and puts it in a Multiple Listing System. That doesn’t sell homes these days. Everyone is searching

Randy Brooks, CEO, Avast Realty

online, that’s why it is crucial to have an agent utilizing online marketing, social media and 360 degree videography tours, as well as knowing the current market and buyer objectives. Our team is up to the task.” In addition to their accolades, Avast Realty is the exclusive brokerage in Alabama and Georgia for, a national online real estate search site. Avast agents are regarded as some of the best in the business, and are held to the highest standards of ethics, integrity and professionalism. With top notch training and an unbeatable support system behind the scenes, Avast agents are more than ready to take on any real estate transaction. “We take pride in being a versatile company complete with professionals from all walks of life dedicated to providing the highest quality of service to each and every client,” said Brooks.

Randy Brooks, Missy Montz, Ray Powell, Brandy Eaton, Katie Watson, Lenda Wagner, Pinki Chahal, Stacey Thompson, and Devrick Mostella.

700 Montgomery Hwy, Suite 150 Vestavia, AL 35216



26 • Thursday, July 11, 2019



Griffith, Tamburello and Bali photos courtesy/ McCown photo by Jordan Wald



Andrea Griffith of Pursell Farms.

Benard Tamburello of Vecchia Pizzeria & Mercato and Moss Rock Tacos & Tequila.

Made Bali of Shiki Asian Cuisine.

Defending ICC champ Patrick McCown of Snapper Grabber’s Land and Sea.

Friendly Food Fight Four Will Face off at Iron City Chef Competition By Donna Cornelius


he Iron City Chef competition is always one of Birmingham’s most popular food events – so much so that admission is a really hot ticket. “It’s always a sell-out,” said Kent Howard, chairman of the Vestavia Hills Rotary Club’s annual fundraiser. This year, the 11th edition of the competition has a new venue at the Holy Trinity-Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Cathedral. Howard said that because the church’s banquet hall is large, the Rotary Club will sell 360 tickets rather than capping sales at the usual number of 300. But don’t wait too long to secure your spot at the July 27 event, or you’ll miss seeing four talented chefs in action. Defending champ Patrick McCown of Snapper Grabber’s Land and Sea will return to take on Made Bali of Shiki Asian Cuisine, Andrea Griffith of Pursell Farms, and Benard Tamburello of Vecchia Pizzeria & Mercato and Moss Rock Tacos & Tequila. Howard said the event will follow its usual format. Each chef will prepare one of his or her favorite menus with a protein and accompaniments plus a dessert. Guests will visit each chef’s station to taste the food and then vote for their favorite. McCown, who’s the chef for the “land” side of Snapper Grabber’s in Vestavia, plans to prepare Bayou La Batre Blue Crab Salad with Gulf Coast blue crab, Alabama field peas, Southern Organics microgreens and herbs, McEwen & Sons grit cakes, Duroc pork belly crisps, fig honey, farmer’s cheese, and lemon vinaigrette. His dessert will be a chocolate biscuit: a petite biscuit with chocolate gravy, candied almonds, Moscato-steeped local berries, and Chilton County peaches. Bali will be cooking beef rendang – beef slowly simmered in coconut milk and herbs to create a tender, flavorful stew – and serve it

ON THE MENU Bayou La Batre Blue Crab Salad with Gulf Coast blue crab, Alabama field peas, Southern Organics microgreens and herbs, McEwen & Sons grit cakes, Duroc pork belly crisps, fig honey, farmer’s cheese, and lemon vinaigrette. Patrick McCown, Snapper Grabber’s Land and Sea Beef rendang – beef slowly simmered in coconut milk and herbs to create a tender, flavorful stew – and serve it with yellow coconut rice. Made Bali, Shiki Asian Cuisine. Pan-seared blackened grouper with crawfish mashed potatoes, edamame and pepper sauté, and balsamic reduction. Andrea Griffith, Pursell Farms. Penne pasta marinara with fresh basil and what Tamburello calls “Not Your Nonna’s Meatballs,” which are house-made with beef and pork. Benard Tamburello, Vecchia Pizzeria & Mercato and Moss Rock Tacos & Tequila.

with yellow coconut rice. For dessert, he’s making pandan coconut pound cake with palm caramelized sugar made from fresh pandan leaves and coconut meat. Griffith’s menu stars pan-seared blackened grouper with crawfish mashed potatoes, edamame and pepper sauté, and balsamic reduction. On the sweet side, she’ll serve white chocolate caramel bread pudding with bourbon ice cream and smoked salt. Tamburello will offer penne pasta marinara with fresh basil and what he calls “Not Your Nonna’s Meatballs,” which are house-made with beef and pork. He described his dessert, white

chocolate bread pudding, as being “like crème brulee and doughnuts had a baby.” The two chefs with the most votes then go head-to-head, cooking onstage in a battle for the title. A panel of judges chooses the winner. This part of the competition resembles Food Network’s “Chopped” series – except that the Iron City Chef participants aren’t likely to have to figure out how to work weird foods like ostrich eggs and sea cucumbers into their dishes. “The top two chefs get a protein surprise, such as chicken, beef or fish, and then have access to other ingredients through a pantry,” Howard said, adding that the Iron City Chef finale has “more of a Southern flair” than a “Chopped” angle. Chef Joseph Mitchell, director of Jefferson State Community College’s Culinary and Hospitality Institute, secures the judges and chooses the protein for the finalists. He and the college are longtime Iron City Chef partners. Jefferson State culinary students help the competing judges at the event, and the student who serves as sous chef to the winner receives a scholarship. Students from Vestavia Hills High School and Pizitz Middle School also will be on hand to bus tables and take on other duties. Jerry Tracey of Alabama’s 13, another Iron City Chef partner, will be the master of ceremonies. A first-time partner this year is AHEPA, which Howard said is a fraternal Greek organization much like Rotary International. Iron City Chef proceeds will provide scholarships for Jefferson State and AHEPA, support the Vestavia Hills High School math and debate teams, and go toward Rotary International programs that improve living conditions for people around the world. Vestavia Rotary’s partnerships with Jefferson State’s Culinary and Hospitality Institute and Alabama’s 13 – plus overwhelming community support – have allowed the organization to raise See IRON CITY, page 28

As of June 16, guests at Mountain Brook restaurants can have a mimosa or Bloody Mary with their Sunday brunch. The Mountain Brook City Council passed an ordinance that allows licensed businesses with appropriate ABC Board alcohol licenses to sell alcohol on Sundays starting at 10 a.m. Previously, alcohol sales in the city couldn’t start until noon. The Alabama Legislature authorized the change in its most recent regular session. The new ordinance applies only to on-premises consumption.


Create your own donut masterpiece at the Heavenly Donut Co.’s Summer Donut Decorating Party on July 16. Children and adults can participate in the class. The $9 per person cost includes a donut, decorating supplies and milk, water or soda. For tickets, visit Times are available between 10 a.m. and 1:45 p.m. The store is at 4911 Cahaba River Road in Vestavia Hills.


Teens can mix up their own creations at the Homewood Public Library’s Teen Smoothie Challenge from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. on July 26. The event is for those in grades 6-12. To register or for more information, visit The library is at 1721 Oxmoor Road in Homewood.


Try some of the best burgers in town at the Birmingham Burger Fest, set for 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on July 27 at Avondale Brewing Co., 201 41st St. S. in Birmingham. Restaurant chefs and backyard cooks will battle it out for the title of tastiest burger. The event benefits the Alabama chapter of the ALS Association. Tickets are $15 and available through a link at


The Market at Pepper Place’s popular Saturday cooking demos continue this summer with an impressive lineup of chefs and culinary experts. The demos, sponsored by Shipt and the Birmingham chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier, start at 9 a.m. at the market, 2829 Second Ave. S. in Birmingham. On the schedule for the next few Saturdays are

See FOODIE NEWS, page 28


Thursday, July 11, 2019 • 27


Happy and Healthy

Rehab Reality... By Judy Butler

Greenhouse Serves up a Balance Between What You Want and What You Need By Emily Williams

An Innovative Menu

The menu features a variety of salads – you can even build your own, three curated smoothie options and four filling soups – from Smokey Corn to Crispy Tequila Pork. A “Sando” selection features heavier options. Those who seek a grilled cheese will not be disappointed. They also provide chicken salad, the Bahn Green – their take on the classic Vietnamese Bahn Mi, and the GH Cuban, a French loaf packed with smokey pork, marinated kale and pickled onions, chicharrones and swiss cheese. For visitors with a sweet tooth, Mary Claire has cooked up a Ridiculous Cookie that is said to be

Mary Claire has cooked up a Ridiculous Cookie that is said to be out of this world.

Photos courtesy Greenhouse

At their new Edgewood restaurant, Greenhouse, seasoned chefs Mary Claire and Bray Britton are striking a balance with a creative menu of items that fulfill cravings while nourishing the body.   The tagline for Greenhouse is “Feelin’ Good All the Time,” which highlights the couple’s philosophy that, while food is transformative and healthy eating is important, eating right doesn’t have to be boring. “We want to feed people in a way that makes them feel great from the inside out,” Mary Claire said. With that in mind, Greenhouse is a place where the whole family can enjoy something wholesome that also tastes amazing and doesn’t break the bank. “Bray and I know that eating whole, organic, colorful meals helps all of us feel our best,” Mary Claire said. “However, having a house full of tiny folks makes that difficult. It’s much harder to prepare fresh, whole, healthy meals than to throw a frozen pizza in the oven.” Sensing a void in organic options, Edgewood seemed the perfect spot for their establishment. The Brittons even partnered with Domestique coffee to fill the additional lack of a coffee shop in the area. “Our menu is designed to get people excited about eating bountiful, vibrant, wholesome meals that taste incredible, fill you up and don’t leave you feeling like a hot pile of garbage afterward.” When the Brittons are craving something less than healthy, they find an opportunity to strike a balance. “Bray is a grill genius,” Mary Claire said. “If we want burgers, we know that the best one will be in our own backyard. “We also totally do a pizza night at home about once a week. We’ll either order from New York Pizza or make our own. And we believe that you can eat clean and feel sated. That’s the whole point of Greenhouse.” 

Chefs Mary Claire and Bray Britton - above, with children Ralph, Miles and Van - are striking a balance with a creative menu of items that fulfill cravings while nourishing the body at their new Edgewood restaurant, Greenhouse.  

out of this world. Many of the items on the menu have been kid-approved by the Brittons’ three sons. Items such as the rainbow salad side item are popular at their household. “It’s sort of an unsung hero at our house,” Bray said. “It’s composed of chickpeas, bell peppers, olives, parsley, feta, with a Greek vinaigrette. Our kids eat it and we eat it.” Full of protein, the rainbow salad is packed with vegetables and makes a great snack or base for a bigger meal. “We wanted to make it easy for families to come and grab something that they can feel good about feeding themselves and their families,” Mary Claire said.  

the kitchen at Bacchanalia and then Abbatoir, now closed. Bray has spent much of his career in Birmingham working for the legendary Frank Stitt at Highlands Bar and Grill, and he helped start El Barrio and Paramount Restaurants.

According to Bray, important lessons were learned in his experience working with a restaurant that did not make it. “One of the first restaurants that I worked for went under after a couple of years,” Bray said. “They were trying so hard, but they nailed every bullet point on the failing restaurant business model.” The restaurant struggled until the end, when it settled for buying cheaper products to try to stay afloat. “It was very important to see that and understand why it was happening,” he said. “You must work harder to make your place better, not more profitable. You can never sacrifice quality.” For Mary Claire, the lessons she holds most dear are those day-to-day processes that keep the kitchen running efficiently. “Come in early. Do your job – exceptionally well. Do everyone else’s job – exceptionally well. Work clean. Be precise. Take direction. Never leave a task incomplete,” she said. “Put your heart into each and every task.” See GREENHOUSE, page 28

Learning From Mom

Both Mary Claire and Bray grew up with mothers who cooked often and taught them to cook joyously and adventurously. “My mom rarely cooked the same thing twice and always welcomed my help,” said Mary Claire. “Bray’s mom treats every meal like a big, fun party, and that mindset is so joyful and inspiring.” Those initial experiences in the kitchen and at the table set the tone for both of their lives, leading both Mary Claire and Bray into culinary careers. Mary Claire began working in the industry in New York City at Danny Meyer’s Union Square Café. She moved to Atlanta, where she joined


Open Monday-Saturday 11am-2pm & 5pm-9pm 521 Montgomery Hwy, Vestavia Hills, AL 35216 • (205) 823-1505

The Temperature Isn’t The Only Thing That Spikes in Summer

For some reason Summer can bring out the worst in people and they realize there might be a problem. Perhaps it’s the Summer parties with barbeque, hot dogs and alcohol. It can also be a dreaded time for those with addiction. There’s an increased focus on drinking, even during the daytime. Maybe there’s family get-togethers, stress or strain. And of course, there are plenty of nosy questions from wellmeaning partygoers about why you’re not cracking a beer, too. Sometimes these events can feel less like a celebration and more like a minefield. As you’re invited to pool parties and cookouts plan ahead by knowing who’s coming? What’s the food and drink situation going to be? The more you know in advance, the better prepared you’ll be to navigate the situation. Recovery doesn’t have to be the elephant in the room. There are many reasons for not drinking alcohol. Plan your answers before you go… health related are always acceptable. If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction the best plan is to get professional help. Most people can’t do it alone. Bayshore Retreat isn’t like the ‘big box’ rehabs. We limit our clientele to six for a reason. We focus on quality not quantity. Clients receive about 30 hours a week of counseling. This includes individual, group, and Life Skills. Our goal is to empower our clients within themselves. Sometimes this might include spiritual support and always it’s to help them find the underlying reasons. If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction give us a call.

28 • Thursday, July 11, 2019

Both Mary Claire and Bray see not only pursuing a culinary career, but running a restaurant as a calling. The notion hit Mary Claire one evening while working one of her first restaurant jobs in Atlanta as a pastry chef. “We were short staffed one night and just got slammed,” she said. “I ended up running back and forth between the pastry kitchen and the hot-

“Our menu is designed to get people excited about eating bountiful, vibrant, wholesome meals that taste incredible, fill you up and don’t leave you feeling like a hot pile of garbage afterward.” line all night, making salads, working sauté, while firing off and finishing pastries. It was so challenging but exhilarating; and that night I realized not only that I was capable of running a kitchen, but that it was my calling.”

Learning From Surprises

Bray had a similar moment of rev-

IRON CITY From page 26

more than $150,000 in contributions over the last 10 years. The evening includes a wine tasting sponsored by Piggly Wiggly. Guests also can buy $20 tickets for the Wine Pull, which Howard said always generates a lot of excitement. “Wine cork numbers are put in a box for a drawing,” Howard said. “You take home the wine with the matching number – and the wines are valued from $15 to $50.” There’s a beer tasting, too, with Birmingham’s Ghost Train Brewing

FOODIE NEWS From page 26 Satterfield’s on July 13, Hot & Hot Fish Club on July 20, and Kathy G & Co. on July 27. Bake from Scratch will present “No Kid Hungry” on Aug. 3. There’s no charge to attend the demos.


One of Birmingham’s favorite food events returns Sept. 19 when Saint George Melkite Catholic Church hosts its annual Middle Eastern Food Festival. Preparations kicked off June 28 as church members rolled about 17,000 grape leaves for the event. Other popular Middle Eastern foods the parish

Co. providing beer samples. General admission tickets to Iron City Chef are $55. There are two options for reserved corporate tables: A half table with four seats is $400, and a full table with eight seats is $800. You can buy tickets at A variety of sponsorships are still available for Iron City Chef. For more information, visit the website. Iron City Chef is July 27, with the doors opening at 6 p.m. It’s at Holy Trinity-Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Cathedral, 307 19th St. S in Birmingham. For tickets, sponsorships and more information, visit will prepare include baked kibbee, a variety of pastries, hummus, falafel and more. The church is at 425 16th Ave. S in Birmingham. For more information, visit or follow the festival on Facebook.


Fiesta, Birmingham’s largest celebration of Hispanic culture and heritage, is set for noon to 8 p.m. on Sept. 28 at Linn Park, 710 20th St. N. Fiesta has authentic Latin food vendors, two music stages, a cultural village, a community village, children’s activities and more. This year’s festival also will feature the Alabama Bicentennial Tour. Early bird tickets are on sale now until July 31 for $7. To buy tickets or for more information, visit

Photo courtesy Homewood High School

From page 27

elation while working his first dining gig, running the kitchen at a country club. “It was normal to walk in to work and find out that we had booked lastminute parties on the pool deck, the grill patio and the 19th green that needed to be fed; in addition to regular dinner service,” he said. After working such a demanding job, Bray was no longer intimidated when he walked into a new kitchen. Whatever was thrown at him, he knew he could handle it. While leading a kitchen is a small part of the job when it comes to opening a restaurant, the Brittons were lucky that Bray was familiar with the process. “Bray was one of the opening chefs at El Barrio, so he was able to walk through the opening process with that company,” Mary Claire said. In addition, Bray was the opening chef at Paramount, owned by the same people who started El Barrio. “Those experiences have been so incredibly valuable to our own opening, and we are so grateful,” she said. The best part about opening their own restaurant in Edgewood has been getting to know the area, meeting with guests and neighbors. “The hardest part has been being away from our tiny people so much,” Mary Claire said. “It’s been hard for all of us, but we’re getting in the groove and seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.”

Homewood Cheerleading Earns Top Marks at UCA Camp The 2019-2020 Homewood High School cheerleading program recently attended the Universal Cheerleaders Association Camp at the Beach Club in Gulf Shores. After the close of the event, cheerleaders walked away with several awards for talent, spirit and leadership.   The HHS varsity squad won first place in the Rally Routine in the Large Varsity Division. The junior varsity and freshman squads joined forces during the camp and won first place in Rally Routine in the Large JV Division.   Selected as All-American

Cheerleaders were Cate Grill, Abby Hall, Ella Grace Ivey, Bella Kimbrell, Kaia Nemeth, Bella Ranieri, Kate Schiller, Ryan Smith, Rocky Wolnek, Hunter Dunn, Jordan Kretzer, Mary Ellen Petrella, Sunny Ferren and Lindley Smith. First place in the JV Division jump off was awarded to Reese Rutledge. Pin It Forward awards were given to Abby Hall, Bella Kimbrell, Kaia Nemeth, Kate Schiller and Sunny Ferren. Nominated to try out for future UCA staff was Cate Grill, Abby Hall, Kaia Nemeth and Rocky Wolnek.

In addition, the HHS cheerleading program as a whole won two overall awards, the Leadership Award and Top Banana. Top Banana is awarded to the program that shows the most spirit and enthusiasm during the week of camp. According to squad officials, the Leadership Award is the highest honor at camp, voted on not by UCA staff but by the other teams at camp. Each team votes for the team they would most like to be on if they weren’t on their own squad and which team exemplifies true leadership and top talent.

Photo courtesy Vestavia Hills High School




Rebelettes Shine at NDA Summer Dance Camp The Vestavia Hills High School Rebelette Dance Team attended a National Dance Alliance summer dance camp at the Great Wolf Lodge in LaGrange, Georgia, last month. The camp was held June 21 through June 24. As camp came to a close, the team earned top marks in a variety of categories in a judged competition and invitations to attend the NDA National

competition. The varsity squad earned Superior and Technical Excellence awards for its home routine and Silver Superior for its team dance. The junior varsity team earned Gold Superior and Technical Excellence awards for its home dance routine. In addition, team member Abbie Stockard earned the Top Gun kick award.

All-American nominees included Abigail White, Lauren Ann Holmes, Riley Richardson, Mary Prickett, Ella Harper, Hannah Vallely, Callen Elkins, Quincy Wilson, Merritt Flynn, Morgan Robison and Marie Duncan. All-American Team members were Merritt Flynn, Abigail White, Morgan Robison, Callen Elkins, Abbie Stockard, Ella Harper and Mary Prickett.


OTMJ High School Football Preview AUGUST 22


OLS’s Rohr Takes the Stage at National Spelling Bee

Photo courtesy Irene Lafakis

OTM Students Present Summer Service Projects at Oratorical Festival

A Saint John Chrysostom Oratorical Festival was recently hosted for teens at the Greek Orthodox Cathedral of Birmingham. The festival is a national youth ministry that encourages teens to speak up for their faith, with topics ranging from protecting national resources to serving impoverished people of the world. Projects presented included Project Mexico, in which a team will travel to Mexico this summer and build a house for a needy family. Another team will plan to go to rural Appalachia for a similar project. The top two speakers in both junior and senior divisions were awarded $400 scholarships to help further their participation in church ministries. Senior division winners were Grace Kovakas, first, Briarwood Christian School; and Ella Pharo, second, Vestavia Hills High School. Luke Lyda of Oak Mountain High School was awarded an honorable mention scholarship of $250. Junior division winners were Davis Deason, first, John

Dads from throughout the Hoover City Schools system will spend July 27

Carroll Catholic High School; and Danial Alkoury, second, Louis Pizitz Middle School. Deason went on to place first in conference competition in Marietta, Georgia. He then represented the cathedral in diocesan competition in New Orleans, where he was declared a finalist. Other finalists included Anna Cobb of Home School Everest Academy and Luke McCallum of Pizitz Middle School. Elementary level winner was fifth grader Elian Alkoury of Vestavia Hills Elementary Central. In addition, essayist Demi Pharo of Liberty Park Middle School contributed to the festival. Judges for the event were teacher Georgia Hontzas, law student Stone Hendrickson and lawyer D.G. Pantazis. Clergy speakers at the event were dean emeritus of the Cathedral, the Rev. Paul Costopoulos; dean of the Cathedral, the Rev. Gregory Edwards; and the Rev. Micah Hirschy. Festival chairs were Irene Lafakis and Alexis Pappas.

Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic School fifth grader Violetta Rohr. fell short of qualifying as one of the 50 finalists. The final 50 were determined by taking the top scores from a written test given to all 562 national participants on the first day of the competition. “I didn’t really think about being in a national competition; it kind of just felt like a normal spelling bee,” Rohr said. “I felt more pressure competing in front of all my school peers than I felt at nationals.” Rohr credits her accomplishment to hard work and a belief in herself and is motivated to work harder next year. “I’ve already started studying hard for next year,” she said. “My goal is obviously to go back and make it to the finals … and maybe even win.”

lending a helping hand to the school facilities. The fourth-annual Hoover City Dad Brigade will have men from throughout the community and a number of high school students spruce up the campuses in preparation for the 20192020 school year. Groups will then break off to finish projects identified by each school principal. Tasks range from minor landscaping, such as spreading pine straw, to pressure washing and painting. A kick-off will begin at 6:45 a.m. at the Home Depot on Riverchase Galleria Circle with breakfast provided by Chick-fil-A. To sign up and join the brigade, visit the Hoover City Dad Brigade Facebook Page and complete the form.

Hall-Kent Students Conduct Letter Writing Campaign to Restore Red Mountain Expressway

Journal file photos by Jordan Wald

Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic School fifth grader Violetta Rohr recently was a competitor in the 2019 Scripps National Spelling Bee. One of five Alabama students to compete, and the only one from the greater Birmingham area, Rohr traveled to Washington, D.C., for the bee May 26-31. “We were so excited for Violetta to represent our school on the national level,” said OLS School Principal Mary Jane Dorn. “She is the first OLS student that we are aware of that has ever attended the National Spelling Bee.” Rohr won the OLS School spelling bee and placed third in the Homewood District for the past two years. With the new Scripp’s RSVBee program, she was able to apply for a chance to receive an invitation to the National Finals. The new invitational program provides the opportunity for more students to compete at the highest level through a special selection review. Rohr was elated when she received her invitation, stating, “I basically was in shock. I just burst into tears; I was so happy.” As contestant number nine on the national stage, Rohr advanced through both rounds of the oral competition but

Photo courtesy Hall Kent School

Annual Dad Brigade to Clean up Hoover Schools July 27

Thursday, July 11, 2019 • 29


Mary Charles’ Doll House

Derrick Murphy, with son Milton at last year’s Dad Brigade. Murphy founded the event during his tenure as president of the Hoover Board of Education.

New, Collectible Antique Dolls

A passionate third grade class started a letter-writing campaign to ask leaders to help restore the cut on the Red Mountain Expressway. State Rep. David Faulkner visited the students recently to discuss and aid their cause. According to school officials, the area is overgrown with plant life that over time will break up 190 million years of geological history. The campaign was inspired by Jennifer Phillips’ class, who entered the McWane Science Center’s Celebrate Science Competition. Classes were asked to create a prototype of an Alabama science

exhibit to celebrate the state’s bicentennial. Phillips’ class decided to focus on Alabama’s geology with a strong emphasis on the Red Mountain Expressway Cut. Their exhibit earned second place. It shows the layers of the soil and teaches kids how bricks and steel are made. The class decided to continue their work by writing to different community leaders to ask for help to restore the cut, quickly receiving responses. A UAB professor was interested in helping the students with this project and sent their letters to geologists all around the state for support. Dr. Prescott Atkinson from the Alabama Paleontological Society, Bryson Stephens from Ebsco and Jennifer Watts from Vulcan Park and

Jennifer Phillips, back row, far left; and her third grade class at Hall Kent with Bryson Stephens from Ebsco, Jennifer Watts from Vulcan Park and Museum and Dr. Prescott Atkinson from the Alabama Paleontological Society. The visitors came to see the exhibit and talked to the class about how they can help restore the Red Mountain Expressway cut.

Museum came to see their exhibit and talked to the class about how they can help restore the cut. Faulkner’s visit followed.

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DICHIARA From page 32

multi-hit games and a team-high 15 multi-RBI games as Samford finished the 2019 season with 41 wins, tying the school record for victories. The Bulldogs earned the program’s first Southern Conference regular season title. DiChiara’s impressive debut season earned him some high accolades. He was named to Collegiate Baseball’s Freshman All-America team and was named to the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Freshman All-America second team. “It was a goal coming into the season to be an All-American and I was able to get it done,” DiChiara said. DiChiara was named first team All-SoCon by both the media and coaches, and he was the media’s choice for SoCon Freshman of the Year. DiChiara also was named to the American Baseball Coaches

Going Back to School – as a Golfer

In the fall, Jack is headed to Central Alabama Community College to play golf, joining his brothers at the collegiate level. Sam also played at CACC before going to UAB. Ford, 18, just graduated from Homewood in May after becoming the first Patriots’ golfer to compete in four state championships. He was the runner-up low medalist this year and finished his career as part of three runner-up teams and one state championship team. He is headed to Lipscomb University to play at his father’s alma mater. Jack also has designs on playing at a four-year college after his time at Central Alabama. “I will play there for a year and then go to another school,” Goldasich said. “I am already talking to schools, especially after the State Amateur.” Now, that he’s back on course, Jack has started looking beyond college. “My ultimate goal is to play on the PGA tour,” he said.

Trey Allen has done it again. The recent Oak Mountain High School graduate followed up his national indoor high jump title by winning 2019 New Balance Nationals Outdoor high jump in June in Greensboro, North Carolina. Allen won the event in a jump off, clearing 6 feet, 11.50 inches. “This is a dream, a blessing,” Allen said in an interview following his triumph. “I came in with something to prove. There were higher jumpers, so I just said I’m going to jump higher.” Allen won the New Balance Nationals Indoor high jump with a leap of 6 feet,10.75 inches in March at The Armory in New York City. Allen is headed to the University of Louisville on a full track and field scholarship. His ultimate goal is to compete in the Olympics one day. He is brimming with confidence following his national outdoor victory. “After this meet, I feel like the sky is the limit, that I can do anything with the proper coaching,” Allen said. — Rubin E. Grant

Association’s Central All-Region teams.

DiChiara Exceeded Expectations

“He obviously had a great year,” Samford coach Casey Dunn said. “Like most freshmen, he got off to a rocky start, but once he settled in, he did a great job for us. “I was expecting him to come in (and) contribute right away, but I don’t know if I expected him to come in and hit .290 and hit 21 home runs. His numbers exceeded expectations,” Dunn said. As a senior at Hoover, DiChiara was tabbed the Over the Mountain Journal’s 2018 Co-Baseball Player of the Year along with Homewood’s Josh Hall, who played this year at Ole Miss. Adam Moseley, DiChiara’s coach at Hoover, kept a keen eye on his former player, attending games whenever he could and watching him online. “It was fun to watch,” Moseley said. “I don’t know if I expected him to hit 20 home runs, but I expected his work ethic to be evident on the

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From page 32

2-under 285. It’s the first time three brothers had finished in the top 10 in the State Amateur. “It was pretty crazy,” Jack said. “I hadn’t played a tournament since August of last year. “We played a practice round and we were in the hotel room, talking smack and goofing around. Sam and Ford had a good first round, but I was for 54th (after an opening round 4-over-par 76) and I just said, ‘That’s OK, I’ll get them tomorrow.’” Jack shot a 67 in the second round and a 69 in the third round to put himself in position to claim the championship trophy. “It took a while to sink in that I won,” he said. “I have bragging rights now for a little bit.” Jack also has a renewed passion for the game. He competed in The Daikin Spirit of America Golf Classic at Burningtree Country Club in Decatur during the final week of June. This week he and his brothers are competing in the Pacific Northwest Golf Association Men’s Amateur Championship at the Tacoma Country & Golf Club in Lakewood, Washington. Next week, Jack is going to Little Rock, Arkansas, to try to qualify on-

site for the 113th Southern Amateur Championship July 17-20 at Chenal Country Club. Sam, 22, who will be a senior this fall at UAB, already has qualified for the tournament. The brothers also are going to try to qualify for the U.S. Amateur Aug. 11-18 in North Carolina at the Pinehurst Resort & Country Club.


Angels are Tournament Champions The Angels edged the Astros 5-4 to win the 2019 fourth grade tournament championship in Mountain Brook Athletics youth baseball action recently. From left, Coach Hughston Nichols, Evan  Mussafer, Wade Wood, Douglas Johnsey, Oliver Mange, Patrick Crye, Jude Davidson, Hughston Nichols Jr., Wright Wallace, Tripp Thuston and Coach Dow Davidson. 

field, especially his hitting. I knew he would have an impact, but I didn’t know he would have that kind of impact. “It’s a credit to Casey. He told him he had a chance to play early and he honored it.” DiChiara already is looking ahead to next season. “It was a good year, but I’ve got to get better at other aspects of the game –strike zone discipline, not striking out as much, taking walks and working on my defense,” DiChiara said. With that in mind, DiChiara is spending this summer playing for the Strasburg Express in the Valley Baseball League in the Shenandoah Valley region of Virginia. The league is an NCAA and MLB-sanctioned collegiate summer league that plays from late May until early August. Through July 1, DiChiara was batting .322 (29 for 90) with eight doubles, four home runs and 24 RBI in 23 games. “It’s going pretty good so far,” DiChiara said. “The competition is good. You see some pretty good arms and some good players.”

His Eyes Are on The Show

DiChiara hopes in a couple of years he will be taken in the Major League Baseball Free Agent Amateur Draft after watching three of his Samford teammates get drafted in June – catcher Anthony Mulrine, Los Angeles Angels; Branden Fryman, New York Mets; and Stephen Jones,

Colorado Rockies. The Bulldogs have had 30 players drafted since Dunn became head coach in 2005. “Being drafted is something I want,” DiChiara said, “but this was just my freshman year and now I’ve got to do it again next year and again the year after that.” Samford’s Sonny DiChiara was named to Collegiate Baseball’s Freshman AllAmerica team and was named to the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Freshman AllAmerica second team.

Photo courtesy Samford University Athletics



Photo submitted

30 • Thursday, July 11, 2019

Oak Mountain’s Hannah Edwards Grows Into Dominant Basketball Player

By Rubin E. Grant

Journal photos by Jordan Wald

Hannah Edwards had a few uniquely Southern traditions to get accustomed to when she moved from Canton, Ohio, to North Shelby County before the start of her eighth grade school year. The first thing was the hot, humid Alabama summers and the not too cold winters. Perhaps even more striking was the Southern custom of children saying, “Yes ma’am,” and, “Yes sir” to adults. “Up north it’s considered disrespectful to say ma’am and sir because it makes someone feel like an old person,” Edwards said. Another change was Southern cuisine, especially fried food such as tomatoes and okra. “We had fried food up there, but down here they fry everything,” Edwards said. “I never heard of some of things they fry, but it’s delicious.” And of course, she had to acquire a taste for that Alabama staple: sweet tea. Earlier this summer, Edwards and her mother, Barbara Edwards, took a trip to Kansas. “We went to a restaurant and my mom wanted some sweet tea,”

Edwards said. “They told her she could have some spice tea and some sugar packets. It was not the same thing.” Along with the cultural adaptations, Edwards had to adjust from just being tall to being really tall. She had always been the tallest girl in her class in Canton, but after coming to Alabama, she hit a growth spurt. She jumped from 5 feet, 11 inches to 6 feet, 4 inches. Her height wasn’t too much of a surprise considering it runs in the family. Her dad is 6-6, her mom is 6-0 and her older sisters are 6-0 and 5-11. Edwards has added two more inches since then and is now 6-6. She enters her senior year at Oak Mountain High School as a prized girls basketball recruit. She is rated the No. 13 center nationally in the Class of 2020 by ESPN. Next week, Edwards will play with some other highly regarded players in the AHSAA 2019 North-South All-Star girls basketball game. She will be on the North team for the July 16 tip-off at 5 p.m. at the Dunn-Oliver Acadome on the campus of Alabama State University in Montgomery. The game is part of the AHSAA All-Stars

Bill Hutto, right, presents Yanks coach John David Owen with the Bill Hutto Trophy for winning the 2A regular season championship.

Ted Hagler, right, presents Bucs coach Robert Hogeland with the Ted Hagle Trophy for winning the 2A Tournament Championship.

Joy League Ends a Year of Changes With a New Championship Tournament

sioner, Tim Meehan. “I’m very excited about the direction of the league,” Meehan said. “We acquired some great sponsors this year who helped us upgrade our jerseys and safety equipment, and the response from our coaches and parents has been overwhelmingly positive all year.” This year, the championship trophies for the regular season and the tournament, held June 15, were named in honor of people who have worked to maintain the Joy League through the years. This year’s winners were: • 1A Regular Season Champs – Clyde Cook Trophy was awarded to

Joy League ended its season for the first time this year with a championship tournament, which replaced the traditional all-star games. The change capped a year of changes for the baseball league. It moved from its longtime home at Edgewood Elementary School and began playing at Homewood Middle School. It also got new members on its board of directors and a new commis-

Thursday, July 11, 2019 • 31


Edwards doesn’t play basketball simply because she’s tall. It’s a family thing, too. Her mom and dad both played in high school, as did her sisters. “I’ve been playing my whole life,” Edwards said. “I was on an organized team when I was 3. My mom coached me until the seventh grade, until we moved down here. She taught me how to play and all the fundamentals.” Edwards has become a force at Oak Mountain thanks in part to the tutelage of Eagles head coach Beth Parmer. After taking over as Oak Mountain’s coach three years ago, Parmer noticed that, despite Edwards’ height, she didn’t always play aggressively. Parmer instructed Edwards to be more physical and to play through contact in the post. “I’ve seen her gradually go from a timid player, not knowing what her potential was, to someone capable of taking over in the paint,” Parmer said. “She has developed into a better player as she’s matured. We’re looking for good things out of her this year.” Edwards credits Parmer for helping her become a more self-assured player. “Coach Parmer has definitely

This summer Edwards has been crisscrossing the country, visiting prospective colleges and playing for the All Alabama Roadrunners, an

AAU team sponsored by Under Armour and coached by Beverly and Greg Kirk. The Roadrunners played in Nashville last week and this week headed to Indianapolis to compete in an Under Armour tournament. Some of the colleges Edwards has visited include Alabama, Auburn, UAB, Samford, Florida, LSU, North Carolina, Kansas, Georgia Tech, West Virginia and Southern Miss. “It’s been an amazing opportunity and experience to visit some great colleges and meet some iconic coaches,” Edwards said. “I’ve developed valuable insight into each program and where I might fit in best. I’ve gotten good advice from the players to help me make a solid decision. “Out of respect to the schools I’m investigating, I’m choosing not to share any of the offers I have received. My recruitment is wide open. I want to play at the Division I level and I hope to play in the WNBA. I want to get a degree in sports management. I am hoping to make a decision by the end of August.” Meanwhile, Edwards has set some lofty goals for her final season at Oak Mountain. “My personal goals are to average 25 points, 10-12 rebounds and five blocks,” Edwards said. “As a team, we want to make it to regionals. I think we have a high chance of making it.”

the Yanks • 1A Tournament Champs – George Leigh Trophy was awarded to the Yanks. • 2A Regular Season Champs – Bill Hutto Trophy was awarded to the Yanks. • 2A Tournament Champs – Ted Hagler Trophy was awarded to the Bucs. • 3A Regular Season Champs – Perry Akins Trophy was awarded to

the Yanks. • 3A Tournament Champs – John J. Smith Trophy was awarded to the Yanks. New board members were named after commissioners Perry Akins and Ted Hagler retired following the 2018 season. The two served the league for a combined 80 years. Bill Hutto, the league’s marketing director, stayed on. In addition to Meehan, other board

members are Stephen McGhee, John David Owen, Foster Phillips, Jim Rice, Izzy Rohr, John Stevens and Tyler Wright. The Joy League has operated in Homewood since 1958. It is a league for boys and girls ages 4 to 12 that stresses the importance of having fun while learning to play baseball. Kids do not have to go through tryouts or evaluations to be able to play; every player gets to play in every game.

Sports Week. “I am extremely excited and honored,” Edwards said. “I get to play with different players, elite players, people like me who want to play college basketball.”

Born to Play Basketball

Journal photo by Maury Wald


Hannah Edwards enters her senior year at Oak Mountain High School as a prized girls basketball recruit. She is rated the No. 13 center nationally in the Class of 2020 by ESPN.

given me confidence in the way I play,” Edwards said. “I wasn’t as confident before. She opened my eyes to see how to do things and to believe in myself.” Edwards saw limited playing time as a sophomore because of an injury, but last season, as a junior, she averaged 15 points, 10 rebounds and three blocked shots. She was named to the All-Over the Mountain team.

College Visits

Oak Mountain’s Hannah Edwards Grows Into Dominant Basketball Player. Page 31


Oak Mouintain’s Allen Soars to National Outdoor High Jump Title. Page 30

By Rubin E. Grant

All American

Accolades Pour in for Former Hoover Baseball Star DiChiara Sonny DiChiara

‘I was expecting him to come in (and) contribute right away, but I don’t know if I expected him to come in and hit .290 and hit 21 home runs. His numbers exceeded expectations.’ SAMFORD COACH CASEY DUNN

the same game I’ve always been playing, just at a different level.” The 6-foot-2-inch, 200-pound DiChiara smacked 21 home runs, tying him for second on Samford’s single-season home run list. He also led the team with 55 RBI. He hit .293 and had a team-best .646 slugging percentage. He had 15

See DICHIARA, page 30

BACK ON COURSE Jack Goldasich’s Renewed Passion for Golf Led to State Amateur Victory By Rubin E. Grant Jack Goldasich was burned out on golf. He grew up playing the sport with his older brother, Sam, younger brother, Ford, and his dad, Dennis, who played collegiately at Lipscomb University in Nashville. “We’ve been playing golf since we could

‘I decided this was something I was pretty good at and I needed to get back to practicing.’ walk,” Jack Goldasich said of himself and his brothers. “We’re all pretty close. We play all the time.” But after graduating in 2018 from Homewood High School, where he and Ford had helped the Patriots win a state championship in 2016, Goldasich decided he had had enough of the family sport. He went to the University of Alabama but just as a student, not a golfer.

“I wasn’t playing well,” Goldasich said. “I didn’t have the desire. I didn’t touch a golf club from August to January.” Once the calendar flipped to 2019, Goldasich, 19, caught the golfing bug again. He picked up his clubs, returned to the links and started striking the ball. “I decided this was something I was pretty good at and I needed to get back to practicing,” he said. A trip to Augusta National for the final round of the Masters in April convinced him that a golfer is what he was meant to be. “It was kind of the final straw,” Goldasich said. “It’s hard to go to the Masters and not get the juices flowing again.”

Beating His Brothers

On the first weekend of June, Goldasich showed he was all the way back. He won the 103rd Alabama State Amateur Championship, shooting a bogey-free final round six-under 66 to overcome a three-shot deficit at Turtle Point Yacht and Country Club in Killen, near Florence. Goldasich edged Ford by two shots with a four-round total of 9-under 278. Ford shot a 67 in the final round and finished second at 280. Sam finished 10th with a four-round total of

See GOLDASICH, page 30

Photo courtesy Jack Goldasich

Photo courtesy Samford University Athletics

Sonny DiChiara was somewhat awed at the outset of his freshman baseball season at Samford back in February. “The first few games were eye-opening,” DiChiara said. “I couldn’t believe I was playing Division I baseball.” The former Hoover first baseman struggled as he adjusted to college ball, but it didn’t last long. Once he figured things out, he put together a stellar season. “After the first few games, I settled in and started rolling,” DiChiara said. “I realized it was

Jack Goldasich, center with brothers Ford and Sam, won the 103rd Alabama State Amateur Championship, at Turtle Point Yacht and Country Club in Killen, near Florence in June.

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