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Otmj over the mountain journal u



Thursday, august 11, 2016

step up your workout Exercise for Elephants

Head over to the Birminham Zoo next week and get fit and raise money for elephant conservation at the same time. life Page 10

Trunks up: Callee demonstrated his exercise routine last week at The Birmingham Zoo for Journal photographer Lee Walls Jr.


Lending A Paw Artists create original pieces with pets to Support Hand in Paw. about town Page 3 The New Face of the Bully Over the Mountain schools prepare students and parents to deal with modern bullying. news Page 8

Ten Days to Dine Out Birmingham Restaurant Week showcases city’s food with special deals, events. food Page 22

2 • Thursday, August 11, 2016


No Vacation From Hunger

Brookwood Baptist Health Collected Food and Money for 17,800 Meals Brookwood Baptist Health collected 96,495 servings of cereal and more than $14,000 as part of its Healthy Over Hungry Cereal Drive. The food and money was donated to Community Food Bank of Central Alabama to provide healthy breakfasts to area children and adults struggling with hunger during the summer, according to a prepared statement from Brookwood Baptist. “While school is out for the summer, many families struggle with hunger as they cannot rely on the schools for nutritious meals,” Crys Martin, director of development and external relations for the food bank, said in the statement. “Brookwood Baptist Health’s generous donation helped provide 17,800 meals, releasing that extra burden on these families. We are thrilled that so many will now be helped because of the system’s leadership in addressing this community health issue.” Brookwood Baptist Health, which is made up of five acute care hospitals –Brookwood Baptist, Princeton Baptist, Shelby Baptist, Walker Baptist and Citizens Baptist medical centers – conducted its drive June 3-10. “I am so proud of all of our colleagues for an outstanding effort to tackle childhood hunger through our Healthy Over Hungry Cereal Drive,” said Keith Parrott, chief executive officer of Brookwood Baptist Health. “Our mission is and always will be to restore good health to those we serve. Because good nutrition is essential to good health, we wanted to join the fight against hunger and shed light on a very real issue currently affecting 1 in 6 residents of our 12-county region.” The food bank solicits new and commercially excess food from multiple food industry sources and distributes that food to more than 235 nonprofit agencies in the 12-county region, according to the statement. The food bank distributed more than 11.9 million pounds of food in 2015. ❖

in this issue About Town 3 people 6 news 8 life 10 social 12

home 18 food 22 schools 25 sports 28


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


August 11, 2016 JOU RNAL Publisher & Editor: Maury Wald Copy Editor: Virginia Martin Features Writer: Donna Cornelius Staff Writers: Sarah Kuper, Emily Williams Editorial Assistant: Stacie Galbraith Sports: Lee Davis Contributors: Susan Murphy, June Mathews, William C. Singleton III, Emil Wald, Marvin Gentry, Lee Walls Jr., Bryan Bunch Advertising Sales: Suzanne Wald, Julie Trammell Edwards, Tommy Wald Vol. 27, No. 1

Over The Mountain Journal is a suburban bi-weekly newspaper delivered to Mountain Brook, Homewood, Vestavia Hills, Hoover and North Shelby County areas. Subscriptions for The Journal are available for $24 yearly. Mail to: Over the Mountain Journal, P.O. Box 660502, Vestavia Hills, AL 35216. Phone: (205) 823-9646. E-mail the editorial department at E-mail our advertising department at Find us on the Web at Copyright 2016 Over The Mountain Journal, Inc. All rights reserved. The Journal is not responsible for return of photos, copy and other unsolicited materials submitted. To have materials returned, please specify when submitting and provide a stamped, self-addressed envelope. All materials submitted are subject to editorial review and may be edited or declined without notification.


murphy’s law


50 Shades of Green

they’re responsible for all that phowas late getting out to walk this tosynthesis magic. They take our morning. The sun already was expiration output and transform it well up in the sky and I found into oxygen so we can breathe once myself looking ahead to the patches again. That’s inspirational, in both of shade, using them as a series of senses of the word. cool stepping stones back to my Of course, trees do have house. Thank goodness for the trees! their flaws. During windstorms, It made me sad for the good their limbs can break loose and people of Oakmont, Pennsylvania, come crashing through your winwhose golf course was purposefully dows. When we have too much rain, deforested before the 2016 U.S. their roots can’t always hold their Open. A return to the original course ground and they topple over power design, the management said. Maybe lines. The bus people don’t want to that’s true or maybe the designer just hear about it, but all those beautiful didn’t have a green crayon. Maybe colored leaves eventually fall and he just sketched in the 18 holes and Sue Murphy have to be raked up and bagged. the trees were implied. Either way, They clog up storm drains and it seemed a gigantic waste to cut gutters. And if you’re not an them down.  animal lover you might not be It put me in mind of Dr. Seuss’ excited about sharing your space Lorax, that fuzzy little guy who It put me in mind of with birds and squirrels. took it upon himself to speak for Dr. Seuss’ Lorax, that There are two sides to everythe Truffula trees that were evenfuzzy little guy who thing. tually (spoiler alert) mowed down I’m struggling right now into extinction by the Oncelers.  took it upon himbecause my personal trees are I’m a tree hugger. I admit it. self to speak for the making it impossible for grass to But really, what’s not to love? Truffula trees... grow in my backyard. The shade Besides the aforementioned shade, is great for my hostas and impatrees serve as wind blocks for tiens, but grass? Not so much. homes on the prairie and plains. We’ve tried all kinds of seeds, laid They provide nesting space for down several types of sod, but, still, the mulch-area/ birds and squirrels. Trees give us apples and oranges grass ratio keeps getting bigger. The solution, I’ve and cherries, plums and peaches and pecans. The Oakmont Country Club might have a nifty 19th hole, been told, is to cut down some of the trees, and I’m having a hard time with that.     but it doesn’t grow olives and lemon zest.     I know, I know, my trees would go on to provide And trees are just pretty. Mimosa and magnolia lumber to build houses and paper and cardboard, but trees burst forth with flowers in the spring and sumtheir leaves will never again sway in the breeze. My mer. People pay big money to board bus tours and birds and squirrels would have to relocate. Either view the fall foliage of the maples and birches. Sure, that or they’d crowd into the remaining trees and in the winter some trees go bare, but that’s because tempers would surely flare and there’s enough squabthey’re resting up for next year’s miracle producbling at the bird feeders already. tion. They’ve earned it. And if you’re not impressed No, I think I’ll keep my trees. Cooling shade with that, consider the evergreens that just soldier on below, 50 shades of green above. It’s something even through the ice and snow.   a Onceler should love. ❖ The biggest reason to speak up for trees is that

over the Mountain Views

We asked several eateries participating in Birmingham Restaurant Week, set for Aug. 12-20 what specials they were planning to offer diners. For more information on the event, see page 22.

“Everything! ... But, if I had to choose just one, the smoked pork belly with bourbon-fig cream sauce is a new recipe of mine and it is quickly becoming a favorite to our regulars.” Joe Resha Jojo’s on Broadway

“We’ll serve our Parppardelle Con Funghi - parppardelle pasta with mushrooms like porcini, shiitake and portabello in a very nice and light tomato sauce. This is my favorite dish on our menu, but for Restaurant Week we add grilled chicken.” Al Rabiee Vino

“This allows us to feature some items not usually seen on our menu, like our lobster tacos. For dessert, we’ll have choco-flan—half chocolate and half flan served with fresh berries.” Ellen Price La Paz

“Restaurant Week will be the perfect opportunity for guests to experience our delicious signature items ... as well as try new menu items like our kale salad—made with fresh kale, pecorino cheese, croutons and our homemade jalapeño mint vinaigrette dressing.” Grant Hunter Perry’s Steakhouse

Thursday, August 11, 2016 • 3

About Town


Lending A Paw

Artists Create Original Pieces with Pets to Support Hand in Paw By Emily Williams

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When artist Linda Ellen Price prepares her annual auction submission for Hand in Paw’s Picasso Pets event, being held Aug. 13, she has to tweak her process a little bit. Instead of creating her piece alone, Price has created an original piece with the help of a dog. Luckily, Price’s creative work is heavily influenced by nature and her commissioned work includes pet portraiture. Her affinity for animals and the natural world was fostered by a childhood battle with extreme myopia. According to Price, after receiving her first pair of eyeglasses in her early teens, one of the first clear images that captured her was the shape of leaves and rocks in nature. “I enjoy both creating paintings depicting dogs in action that are purely imaginative as well as pet portraits done on commission,” she said. “Dogs are very special creatures that bring much joy to the world.” When she works in her studio, she is often accompanied by her two dogs, but her standard poodle, Nick, and miniature poodle Francois rarely join in. For the annual event’s live auction in the past six years, however, she has been entering canine-collaborative works of art, and she says the final product always is a surprise. “I usually have a spontaneous idea when painting for Picasso Pets. I do not plan ahead,” she said. “The color and strokes created by the dog are

Paw Painting: Scout, above, works on his latest artistic creation with the help of local artist Linda Ellen Price. Below, Scout proudly displays the finished painting with Price, standing, and his owner, Joe Medori.

always inspirational for the final composition.” She begins her work as usual, faced with a blank canvas, and what happens next is up to a golden Labrador named Scout. A Mountain Brook native, Scout resides with his owner, Joe Medori of Iberiabank. “I only spend a brief amount of time with Scout, but enough to see his beautiful demeanor,” Price said. Once Scout has created a background design using his tail and paws as paintbrushes, Price then begins her

work. This year’s piece features a portrait of Scout jaunting across a lawn dotted with his colorful brushstrokes. The artwork will be auctioned off at the event along with other works created by local artists collaborating with pets of prominent members of the Birmingham community. Animal artists include any artistically inclined pet, including goats, parrots and horses. To make up for Scout’s lack of opposable thumbs, Medori will accompany his canine to the stage during the live auction portion of the event to present Scout and Price’s painting. Other items up for auction include trips, dining packages, jewelry and more. The funds raised at Picasso Pets will benefit the organization’s mission to improve the health and well-being of humans through the aid of trained therapy dogs. Price, a registered nurse, hasn’t seen a therapy dog in action firsthand, but she is quick to note the emotional support a pet provides. “I have seen how much (my) dog can help relieve stress and grief in my own life,” Price said. “Whoever thought up the idea of using dogs for therapy created a bundle of happiness for millions of people in need.” The 16th annual fundraiser will be held Aug. 13 at the Harbert Center and begins at 6 p.m. Guests will be joined by some of Hand in Paw’s star therapy animals. The evening will begin with craft beers, wine, specialty cocktails and hors d’oeuvres served alongside a silent auction. A seated dinner of Southern cuisine and the live auction will follow. Tickets are $175. For more information, visit ❖

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4 • Thursday, August 11, 2016

About Town


A Kick-Off to Tailgate Season The Bell Center’s Tailgate Challenge is Aug. 27

Photos special to the Journal

For many Over the Mountain residents, it is an event that signals the beginning of the most wonderful time of the year: football season. The Bell Center for Early Intervention’s Tailgate Challenge is just a few weeks away. The event brings superfans of college sports teams together in a competition for which tailgate tent shows the most team spirit, has the best food and other critical tailgating elements. Celebrity judges include WJOX RoundTable, the Lochamy Brothers from the SEC network, Scott Register and Steven “Stingray” Ray. Event-goers can look forward to sampling food, enjoying live music and participating in family-friendly activities. This year’s tailgate is Aug. 27 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Bell Center, 1700 29th Court S. in Homewood. Adult tickets are $15, children ages 4-10 are $5 and children under 3 are free. Sponsors this year are Regions Bank, Ram Tool & Supply Co, Nall-Whatley Foundation, Red Sky Studios, Medical Properties Trust, Vulcan Value Partners and Renasant Bank. Proceeds from the event go toward the Bell Center’s early intervention programs for children with developmental delays. Kimberly Watkins and For more information on son Trent, a Bell Center the Bell Center and to buy graduate, at right, tickets, register a team, or with a friend enjoying provide a sponsorship, visit last year’s Tailgate ❖ Challenge.

Aug. 11-25 Thurs., Aug. 11 BIRMINGHAM

Pitch Talk Negro Southern League Museum The museum will host a presentation by Dr. Layton Revel, an expert on black baseball culture in America. This event is from 5:30-7:30 p.m. and features a catered reception by Yellow Bicycle Catering Company. Space is limited, for more information, visitbirminghamnslm. org or call 581-3040.

Fri., Aug. 12 Vestavia Hills

Concerts in the Forest Library in the Forest Continuing the Concerts in the Forest series, the library will host a performance by worldrenowned bassist and Birmingham native Sean Michael Ray from 6:30-7:30 p.m. This event is free. For more information, visit vestavialibrary. org.

Sat., Aug. 13 HOMEWOOD

Third Annual Block Party Homewood Library The Homewood Library Foundation’s annual fundraiser will take place from 5-8 p.m. The event will include food and beverages from local Homewood restaurants, music by Mike Sheehand and Eric Watters, inflatables, a climbing wall and more. Adult food tickets are $30. Children’s tickets for ages 4

and up are $10 and include food as well as access to activities. For more information, visit homewoodpubliclibrary. org. BIRMINGHAM

Beer, Bands and Bullies Avondale Brewing Bama Bully Rescue’s sixth annual fundraiser will take place from 4-10 p.m. featuring music from Atticus Avenue, DJ LeeJ and the Mad Hatter Dance Company, Outshine, Power Jackson, Matt Herren Band and more. A “bully booth” will feature merchandise for sale as well as on-site raffles. Admission is $10 and proceeds benefit the organization’s efforts of finding homes for abandoned, abused and neglected pit bulls and “bully” breeds. For more information, visit

Choral, Marvin Pullom & FWD and Trinesha & S.O.T.L. This event is free and open to the public. Doors open at 3 p.m. For more information, visit

Sun., Aug. 14 BIRMINGHAM

Big Top Sideshow Avondale Brewing Company Glenwood Autism and Behavioral Health Center will host the inaugural event from 1-4 p.m., benefitting the junior board’s “A Night Under the Big Top” gala. The fundraiser will include music by the Dreenen Brothers Blues

Cancer Society Salutes Southern Research at Gala The American Cancer Society will honor Southern Research for its longstanding success in the development of anticancer drugs at its annual Hope Gala on Aug. 20. Margaret Lichty and Carmen Morrow, (from left above) will chair the event, which will begin at 6:30 p.m. with cocktails and a silent auction, followed by dinner and a live auction. Mike Royer will serve as emcee and Jack Granger as auctioneer. Money raised at the Hope Gala will benefit ACS in Birmingham and the Joe Lee Griffin Hope Lodge. For more information or to volunteer, contact Libba Hardwick at or 930-8883, or visit ❖ Band, food trucks and children’s activities. The event is $10 for adults and children ages 12 under may enter for free. For more information, visit  

Fri., Aug. 19 BIRMINGHAM

Art on the Rocks Birmingham Museum of Art This final installment of the Museum’s summer series will feature music by Sweet Crude. The event will begin at 7 p.m. Tickets are $25 for non-members and $15 for members. For more information, visit


Baby Steps Memorial Run Tannehill Ironworks The eighth annual 5k and 1 mile fun run will benefit the Amelia Center at Children’s of Alabama. Packet pick-up will begin at 7 a.m. and door prizes and awards will follow the run. Individuals 5k early registration is $25 or $30 day of race. Teams of five can register for $20 per member prior to race day. One mile early registration is $15 or $20 on the day of the race. For more information, visit 

Sips for CF Alabama Theater The Laps for Cystic Fibrosis Foundation will hold the eighth annual wine tasting competition at 7 p.m. Teams of one to three people must bring three bottles of the same wine - two for tasting and one for the grand prize. The top three teams will split the multi-bottle prize. Tickets are $30 per person. For more information, visit MOUNTAIN BROOK

Back to School Movie on the Lawn Emmet O’Neal Library The Library will host a movie screening on the lawn beginning at 7:30 p.m., featuring a family-friendly film about a zany zoo animal caper. Guests are invited to bring picnic dinners and blankets. For more information, visit BIRMINGHAM

Chirps and Chips Birmingham Botanical Gardens The Alabama Wildlife Center junior board will host a casino-themed fundraiser from 7-10 p.m. The event features food, beverages, games, live entertainment, a silent auction and a prize drawing. Tickets are $50 per person. For more information, visit awrc. org.

Sat., Aug. 20


Donate Life Gospel Celebration Lyric Theater Alabama Organ Center will host its first Donate Life Gospel Celebration featuring performances by the Birmingham Chapter Gospel Music Workshop of America Inc. Choir, Evelyn S. Hardy Men of Distinction Male Chorus of Sixth Avenue Baptist Church, New Hope Baptist Church, Angenetta Smith, Brother Jessie Champion Omega



Boiling N’ Bragging, Sat., Aug. 20 Otey’s Tavern  Rotary District 6860 will host the eighth annual Boiling N’ Bragging from 6-9 p.m., benefitting the Critical Care Transport program at Children’s of Alabama. The  event will feature live music, drink specials, activities for children, a corn hole tournament and more. Tickets are $25 and guests are encouraged to sport their favorite football team colors. For more information, visit ❖

Alabama Tour de Cure + Step Out Railroad Park The American Diabetes Association will host a combination walk and cycling ride beginning at 6:30 p.m. Route distances range from five to 100 miles. Registration for cyclists is $25 and walkers can participate for free. For more information, visit


Just a Call Away 5k & Fun Run Uptown Entertainment District Resolute Running will host its second annual 5k and fun run benefitting the Crisis Center Inc., which provides 24-hour support services for individuals experiencing personal crisis or mental health issues. Runners of all ages and abilities, strollers and pets are welcome. Entry fees begin at $30 for the 5k and $15 for the fun run. For more information, visit AL/Birmingham/ACallAway5k. MOUNTAIN BROOK

Heart+Soul 5K Crestline Elementary Equal Access Birmingham will host its annual 5K and fun run, benefitting the organization’s efforts to provide free health care to uninsured community members. Packet pick-up will be held Thurs., Aug. 19 from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. at the Trak Shak in Homewood. Raceday registration and packet pick-up will begin at 7 a.m. The event will include a kids zone, food, drinks and music. Registration for the 5K is $25 in advance. Kids run registration is $10. For more information, visit Birmingham

OHOH Gold Gala WorkPlay The Junior Board of Open Hands Overflowing Hearts will host a gala from 7-11 p.m. benefitting pediatric cancer research. The evening will include music by Black Jacket Band, food, drinks and a selection of raffle items. Guests are encouraged to incorporate gold into their attire. Tickets are $35 per person or $60

Thursday, August 11, 2016 • 5

About Town


for a pair. Students can purchase tickets for $20. For more information, visit

Sun., Aug. 21 BIRMINGHAM

L’Chaim Alys Stephens Center The Birmingham Holocaust Museum’s annual fundraiser will be held from 2:30-4 p.m. in the Sirote Theatre, featuring the music of Frank Sinatra as requested by the event’s honoree, Betty Goldstein. The event will include performances by Ray Reach and Temple Emanu-El Cantor Jessica Roskin, a dramatic performance by Benjamin Russell High School drama students, a presentation by Dr. Dominique Linchet from the Alabama School of Fine Arts and a dessert reception. Individual tickets are $50 and can be purchased at 2016lchaim. For more information, visit


The Real State of the Union Briarwood Presbyterian Church Briarwood and the Westminster Theological Seminary will host a conference beginning at 6 p.m. each evening. The event is open to the public and will feature presentations on biblical solutions to current issues and a question and answer session with Dr. Paul Cleveland and Congressman Gary Palmer. For more information, visit

Sat., Aug. 27

Thurs., Aug. 25



PikaZOO Birmingham Zoo The Zoo will host a nighttime Pokemon Go event from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Guests can participate in two hours of non-stop lures at the zoo’s 25 Pokestops and battle for control of the zoo’s two gyms. Though animals will not be on exhibit, all pathways will be open and train rides will be offered for $1. Admission is $5. For more information, visit

Fairy Tale Ball Embassy Suites Birmingham-Hoover River Ballroom Childcare Resources will host a

family-friendly gala from 5:30-8:30 p.m. featuring dance music, gourmet hors d’oeuvres, fairy tale characters, and more. For more information, visit the “10th Annual Fairy Tale Ball” Facebook page. Send About Town news to:

LEadErs in supErior EnErgy soLutions

Save The date Aug. 26-28 BIRMINGHAM

Sidewalk Film Festival Downtown Birmingham The 18th annual film festival will include screenings of more than 200 movies. For more information and a full schedule, visit

Recently installed solar power panels at a home in Mountain Brook.

Solar Power Solutions and Superior LED Lighting and Controls

Fri., Aug. 26 BIRMINGHAM

Bombers and Bombshells Ball Southern Museum of Flight From 7-11 p.m., the Museum will host a ball to support the Mary Alice Beatty Scholarship. Admission is $30, for more information, visit   

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6 • Thursday, August 11, 2016



The Adventures of Fred Norrell Homewood Man Pens Memoir of Boyhood on Lake Martin

By Sarah Kuper


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Grocers Award Scholarships to Three Hoover Students

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The Alabama Grocers Education Foundation recently awarded 62 scholarships to employees and children of employees, including Hoover students Wesley Fulmer, Emily Trucks and Tyler Stone. The scholarships Wes Fulmer are awarded to demonstrate the association’s interest in supporting the next generation of

Journal photo by Sarah Kuper

‘I used to raft around the lake and explore like Huck Finn. In my mind, I was him.’

adventures with his father, but he also began to invite friends to the lake to water ski and enjoy the outdoor life.

Today, Norrell and his family rarely go to the lake. “I bet it has been five years since I’ve been there,” he said. “It has changed so much. A lot of large ‘McMansions’ and it is loud with all the speed boats.” But, he said, there are several Alabama lakes that still have that wilderness feel, at least for now. After a long career as an economist, Norrell never fancied himself a world-class writer. All the same, he said, the words came easily to him. “My writing process – well, I didn’t have one specifically. It was fairly easy because it is all things that happened to me, I didn’t have to invent anything,” he said. The book is published by Cahaba Press and is for sale on Amazon for $6. So far, Norrell’s work has received all five-star reviews on Amazon. One reviewer said the writing style was suitable for elementary schoolers but the book would be “appreciated as much, if not more, by adults.” Reviewers agree the book is a way for adults to remember what it was like to be adventurous children and an inspiration for children to get out and explore. ❖

leaders by providing them with financial assistance for education, according to a press release. “To date, the Alabama Grocers Foundation has awarded more than $1 million in scholarships,” Alabama Grocers Association President Ellie Smotherman Taylor said in a released statement. “Our association is thankful to have this opportunity to support the higher education of Alabama’s youth, Emily Trucks they are the future of our great state.” Scholarship recipients were chosen

from more than 125 applicants based on community involvement and academic achievements. The scholarship funds are raised from Alabama Grocers Association supporters, as well as three annual golf events and a silent auction. “We are thankful to our members and other supporters of the Alabama Grocers Association,” said foundation board Chairman Jay Mitchell. “Over the years, their generous support has made these Tyler Stone scholarships possible, impacting the lives of hundreds of people. ❖

Lake Life: Fred Norrell, a retired economist, began to spend summers at Lake Martin with his sisters and parents when he was six years old.

Book cover and illustration courtesy Fred Norrell


Fred Norrell said he wasn’t looking to pen a bestseller when he began writing his book, “A Boy’s Adventures on Lake Martin.” Rather, his goal was to put in writing for the next generation stories of a bygone era, of a childhood spent outdoors. “I really wrote it for my son,” Norrell said. “He didn’t have the childhood adventures I did – he wasn’t as interested in the outdoors. It’s also dedicated to my two grandchildren.” In a way, Norrell said, the 50-page book also was written to and for his late father, who, he said, is to thank for action-packed summers on the lake. Norrell, a retired economist who lives in Homewood, began to spend summers at Lake Martin with his sisters and parents when he was 6 years old. The family had a modest cabin in the area before largescale developments began cropping up on the lakeshore. Norrell’s book is a first-person narrative that tells stories of him and his father building a raft and exploring the lake, tromping through the woods, catching fish and cooking them over a campfire. “I had an old single shot .22 rifle,” he said. “I rarely shot much of anything but I would walk through the woods with it.” Norrell said he has some native American heritage in his family, so he would use his imagination while walking through the woods and rafting down the lake to pretend he was one of the wood’s earliest inhabitants. Norrell likens his experiences to one of literature’s most famous characters. “I used to raft around the lake and explore like Huck Finn. In my mind, I was him,” Norrell said. As he grew older, Norrell continued to build boats and have all-day

Vestavia’s Bryant Earns Eagle Scout Rank Kevin Michael Bryant of Boy Scout Troop 83 was awarded the rank of Eagle Scout on Sept. 10, 2015. Troop 83 is sponsored by Dawson Memorial Baptist Church. Bryant has been involved in scouting for 11 years. He began as a Cub Scout in Pack 352 at Vestavia Kevin Michael Hills United Bryant Methodist Church, where he earned the Arrow of Light award. In his scouting career, Bryant earned 31 merit badges and held the positions of scribe, historian, librarian and senior patrol leader. For his leadership project, Bryant chose to revitalize and improve a portion of the amphitheater at Covenant Presbyterian Church. The job included clearing out, cleaning up and planting new shrubbery behind and beside the outdoor amphitheater. After raising more than $1,000, Bryant coordinated the efforts of 15 scouts and adults to complete the project in July 2015. A recent graduate of Chelsea High School, Bryant plans to attend Shelton State Community College. While at Chelsea High, Bryant was inducted into the National Beta Club and the National Technical Honor Society. At Shelton State, he plans to enroll in the Industrial Electronics Technology program and participate in the Mechatronics partnership with Mercedes Benz U.S. International. Bryant is the son of Michael and Ellen Bryant of Vestavia Hills and is an active member of Vestavia Hills United Methodist Church.

Mountain Brook’s Hines Awarded Eagle Scout Rank Ashton Clarke Hines of Boy Scout Troop 86, at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, was awarded the rank of Eagle Scout in a Court of Honor Ceremony July 31. For his project, Hines built a moss rock fire pit and Ashton Clarke Hines retaining wall with a flagstone walkway at Mountain Brook Baptist Church. The area will provide a place for church members of all ages to gather. As a member of Troop 86, Hines obtained 21 merit badges and served as Quarter Master. A senior at Mountain Brook High School, Hines is the son of Carol and Allen Hines of Mountain Brook.

Mountain Brook’s Waudby Earns Eagle Scout Honor Robert Hugh George Waudby III of Mountain Brook was awarded the rank of Eagle Scout on July 31.

Thursday, August 11, 2016 • 7



Waudby is a member of Troop 86, at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church. In his scouting career, he has earned 21 merit badges and has served Robert in various Hugh George leadership Waudby III roles, including chaplain, troop librarian and assistant senior patrol leader. For his Eagle project, Waudby constructed four planters for The Abbey, a non-profit coffee shop organized by the Episcopal Diocese of Alabama. He devoted more than 100 hours of work to complete the project, creating unique planters featuring a rustic design inspired by the aesthetic of log cabins. The largest weighed more than 500 pounds. Waudby is the son of Gretchen and Rob Waudby.

Director Louise Jones said in a released statement. The award is presented each year to a student of Samford University’s Virginia Meadows McWhorter School of Pharmacy who also is an APA member, according to the release. The honor

recognizes a student who demonstrates superior professionalism in school as well as other pharmacy-related endeavors. Meadows is a 2016 graduate of the McWhorter School of Pharmacy and received her undergraduate degree in history from Auburn University. In her Samford career, she served as patient care vice president and chair for the Generation Rx Committee for the American Pharmacists Association’s Academy of Student Pharmacists. She was the recording secretary for

her class and the 2014 APA student representative for McWhorter. Meadows also was a member of the Pediatric Pharmacy Advocacy group, Mortar Board National Honor Society, Phi Delta Phi National Honor Society and Omicron Delta Kappa National Honor Society. She is one of five Samford students who have been selected for a residency at UAB Hospital. ❖ Send People news to:

Beta Sigma Phi Sorority Hosts Founder’s Day Celebration The 85th annual Founder’s Day of Beta Sigma Phi International Sorority was held recently and honored the achievements for chapters located across the Greater Birmingham area. During an awards luncheon, awards were bestowed to chapters that hosted the best events. In the category of Best Social, Alpha Chapter was granted first place for its Weekend Getaway Shirley Loewen at Lake Guntersville, featuring the Cherokee Indian Festival. The chapter also received first place in the Best Service category for its Valentine Dinner, honoring the Women at Jessie’s Place. The Xi Alpha Iota chapter won first place in the category of Best Program for Memoirs of a Civil War Soldier. Chapter of the year was granted to the Xi Alpha Xi chapter for overall accomplishments. The Birmingham City-Wide Woman of the Year award was granted to Shirley Loewen of the Alpha Chapter for her contributions to the sorority and the community. Loewen was followed by Penny Barry of the Zeta Beta chapter in second and Clyde Ward of the Xi Alpha Xi chapter in third.

Samford’s Meadows Awarded Pharmacy Association Honor Virginia “Ginny Tyler” Meadows of Birmingham recently received the Joseph O. Dean Jr. Student Professionalism Award at the Alabama Pharmacy Association’s annual convention, held June 13 in Destin, Florida. “(Meadows) stands out not only for her excellent academic record, but through her desire to become the very best she can be as a person and a pharmacy professional,” APA Executive

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8 • Thursday, August 11, 2016

u Over the Mountain

The New Face of the Bully Over the Mountain Schools Prepare Students and Parents to Deal With Modern Bullying

By Sarah Kuper This month, nearly 4,000 elementary, middle and high school children will walk through the doors of Homewood’s five public schools. With the new school year comes adjustments and challenges, but according to Homewood city school officials, one challenge is the same every year. Bullying is an age-old dilemma from which no school is exempt. But Homewood schools’ behavior and interventional specialist, Leigh Cohen Long, believes Homewood students are well equipped to prevent and handle bullying. “We are so diverse in Homewood, kids are understanding and have respect,” she said. “Plus, we have guidance lessons woven through the curriculum from elementary school to high school.” Long gives the example of the “Shades Cahaba Way,” a six-point mantra each elementary schooler learns at Shades Cahaba Elementary: “Speak for yourself ... and others when needed. Listen to others ... and they will listen to you. Avoid put-downs ... who needs them? Take charge of yourself ... you are responsible for you. Show respect ... everyone is important. Have fun ... life is a gift.”

Long said the undercurrent of teaching tolerance

and respect continues to middle and high school through what the system calls the “Homewood Spirit.” Vestavia Hills, Hoover and Mountain Brook city schools also have anti-bullying programs in place, plus resources for parents and students both online and through guidance counselors. Even with a strong anti-bullying message broadcast throughout the schools, Long acknowledges that, nowadays, most bullying goes on in secret.

Homewood schools’ behavior and interventional specialist, Leigh Cohen Long, said the stereotypical playground bully isn’t nearly as prevalent or visible as the bully terrorizing another student from behind a screen or cell phone. “Anything can happen anytime online. Cyberbullying is as concerning as traditional bullying, if not more so because it is so secretive,” she said. Long said the stereotypical playground bully isn’t nearly as prevalent or visible as the bully terrorizing another student from behind a screen or cell phone.

She said one way Homewood schools are trying to handle cyberbullying is by empowering students. “We try to teach kids how to stand up for themselves and not keep it a secret,” she said. Long also said administrators and faculty stress to students the lasting impact their online actions could have. “We want them to know to be careful with what they talk about and post online,” she said A big part of Homewood’s approach to cyberbullying is parental outreach. “I try to teach parents to be in your child’s business,” Long said. “Know what they are up to online and passwords.” Homewood school counselors work individually with students involved in bullying situations, but they also suggest parents do their part. “We encourage the parents of the child being bullied to reach out to the other set of parents,” Long said. If handling the issue outside of school is not an option, Homewood, Mountain Brook, Vestavia Hills and Hoover schools all have formal documents parents or students may submit to report bullying or harassment complaints. Long’s advice to parents as the new school year begins is to stay informed and pay attention to changes in their children’s behavior. To students, Long advises approaching the new year with respect and tolerance toward others while also standing up for yourself. ❖

Opinion Role u mountain brook

BSC’s Natalie Davis Takes the Public Pulse By Lee Davis When Natalie Davis accepted a position as a political science professor at Birmingham-Southern College in 1972, she never saw it as a long-term proposition. “I had gotten my undergraduate degree from Stetson University in Florida,” Davis recalled. “I thought I’d teach at Southern for two or three years and go back to Florida. Instead, my husband and I fell in love with Birmingham and we’re still here.” In the years that followed, Davis expanded the reach of her political knowledge far beyond a classroom. She became one of Alabama’s best known political commentators, sometimes offering a blueish perspective in a solidly red state. But mostly, Davis tries to play it down the middle, focusing on the nuts and bolts of the election campaign itself instead of pushing an ideological viewpoint. “I think I’ve lasted (as a commentator) because I’ve tried to be fair to both sides,” she said. “There was a time when the two parties had disagreements but they were able to work together. We’ve gotten away from that and now the system is broken,” said Davis, who is this month’s speaker for the Mountain Brook Chamber of Commerce luncheon, Aug. 25. Davis’ real political passion may be the numbers game. As a graduate student at the University of North Carolina, she became interested in public opinion research, and she has conducted polling surveys for decades. “When I started, nobody in Alabama was doing much polling,” Davis recalled. “One day, Bob Vance (the chairman of the Alabama Democratic Party at the time) asked me to do a poll, and it turned out to be gold. There’s an old saying that if you get two opinions, most people are going to listen to the guy who’s wearing the lab coat. In politics, if you have the numbers, you are the guy in the lab coat.” Davis did polling work for groups as diverse as the Alabama Education Association and the Alabama Power Company, but the tipping point for her career came in the controversial gubernatorial election of 1986. A hotly contested runoff in the Democratic primary pitted Lt. Gov. Bill Baxley against Attorney General Charlie Graddick. Baxley was heavily favored, but Graddick won by a narrow margin. Baxley supporters chal-

Thursday, August 11, 2016 • 9



lenged the result, claiming that illegal Republican crossover votes had provided Graddick his margin of victory. After a long and bitter legal battle, the state Democratic Party awarded the gubernatorial nomination to Baxley, using Davis’ polling data to justify its action. The party’s ruling proved to be unpopular with the voters, as Republican Guy Hunt swamped Baxley in the general election to become Alabama’s first Natalie Davis is GOP governor this month’s speaker in the 20th cen- for the Mountain Brook Chamber tury. of Commerce lun“The cheon, Aug. 25. (Democratic) Committee had a choice. It could have ordered another runoff or picked a candidate,” Davis said. “They picked Baxley. That was the beginning of the end of the Democrats’ control of Alabama. It probably won’t come back in my lifetime.” A few disgruntled Graddick supporters blamed Davis for the committee’s ruling. She received hate mail and anonymous phone calls. “It was a tough time,” she said. “But I wasn’t the one that made the ruling. I just gave them the data that was requested.” Davis continued her role as a sought-after political commentator after the Baxley-Graddick dispute, interrupted only by a run for the U.S. Senate in 1996. “Howell Heflin wasn’t running for another term, so it was going to be an open seat,” Davis recalled. “Open seats don’t come along very often. I knew I could raise money, so I decided to do it. It was a great experience.” Davis lost the Democratic nomination to Roger Bedford, who went on to lose to Republican Jeff Sessions in the general election. “I thought about running for lieutenant governor in 1998 but decided against it,” Davis said. “I’d made my last go at political office.” Davis grew up in New York as the daughter of working class parents who revered President Franklin D. Roosevelt. She majored in political science in college and decided to seek a doctorate and become a college professor. “I never worked in a campaign

where I got inspired to be involved in politics,” she said. “It just turned out to be what I wanted to do.” Davis is the Howell T. Heflin Professor of Political Science at BSC and owns two consulting firms. Davis and Associates does public opinion research while Voir Dire is a jury consulting firm, specializing in juror research and mock trials.

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The ‘Gift’ of 2016

Davis sees the turbulent 2016 election cycle as evidence that the current American political system is dysfunctional. “For political scientists, this election is a new gift every day,” she said. “No matter who wins, political scientists will be studying this election 50 and 100 BACK TO WORK 50+ at Jefferson State Community College can help years from now.” you learn new networking strategies, target your job search, get job Davis sees the fact that different leads, enroll in short-term training and find resources that can help you parties can control the executive and stay strong while you are looking for your next job. legislative branches as problematic for American government. CALL TOLL FREE (855) 850–2525 “A parliamentary system such as in • Register for a Smart Strategies for 50+ Jobseekers Workshop near Great Britain would be very different,” you where you can: she explained. “For example, if the – Learn about the 7 Smart Strategies you need to get back into Conservative Party wins, they control the workforce the Parliament and the prime minister, – Apply for the BACK TO WORK 50+ Coaching and Training Program so they can do pretty much what they • Order AARP Foundation’s free job search guide promise to do. In the United States, if Next Workshops: August 23rd & 24th, 2016. you have a president from one party and Congress is controlled by the other Jefferson State Community College is a proud sub-grantee of the SIF program party, nothing gets done. under a grant provided from the Corporation for National and Community Service While the anti-establishment to AARP Foundation. presidential campaigns of Republican To learn more, visit: Donald Trump and Democrat Bernie Sanders may come from different perspectives, Davis thinks they have a common thread. “Many Americans think that the This program is available to all, without regard to race, color, national origin, disability, sex, age, political affiliation, or religion. people in power don’t care about them,” Davis explained. “Trump and Sanders have tapped into that feeling.” 8/2/16 Davis estimates that her students 1330-002_OverMount_4.0625x6.25_BW_082324-r1.indd 1 are reflective of the political split in the nation, divided about evenly between Democrats and Republicans. But there is one thing that unites them. “Most of them think today’s politics is a joke,” she said. “They don’t like the extreme polarization. A lot of them don’t want to express a strong opinion because they don’t want to offend anyone. I’m not sure if that’s good or bad.” On the other hand, Davis said her students have great empathy for what’s going on in the world. “They care about their community and their country,” she said. “They are upset about the way things are going.” Natalie Davis should know. She’s been measuring people’s opinions for decades. Davis’ Aug. 25 speech to the chamber will be at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens. Doors open at 11 a.m. and lunch is served at 11:30 a.m., but space is limited. To register to attend, visit welcometomountainbrook. ❖ com.

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Heavy Lifting Zoo Offers Guests a Chance to Pump up Next to Pachyderms

‘Exercise is a big part of their day. We have them do a lot of stretches, they have to move heavy objects … We also do some mentally stimulating exercises throughout the day. We’ll hide food in certain spots so they have to dig around and search for it.’ Laura Schillinger, zoological manager for the Trails of Africa

By Emily Williams The Birmingham Zoo’s newest event sheds light on a little-known fact: even the world’s largest mammal has to find time to work out. According to Laura Schillinger, zoological manager for the Trails of Africa, the three African elephants who call Birmingham home start each day by working out. “Exercise is a big part of their day,” Schillinger said. “We have them do a lot of stretches, they have to move heavy objects … We also do some mentally stimulating exercises throughout the day. We’ll hide food in certain spots so they have to dig around and search for it.” Seeing a similarity in habits of humans and elephants, she came up with the idea to host a workout class at the zoo that treats participants to a boot camp-style workout followed by a front row view of the elephant’s morning routine. From Aug. 15-19, guests who register for a boot camp at the zoo will be treated to an intimate workout session, held two hours before the zoo opens for the day, followed by a chance to cool down and watch either Bulwagi, Callee or Ajani do their exercises. The human workouts have been coordinated by Birmingham resident Doug Cooper, who,

though he’s been a fan of the Crimson Tide, is forming a new appreciation for the elephant. “I’m learning so many things that I never knew,” Cooper said. “I had no idea that the elephants have to exercise and I’m looking forward to learning more about them.” Though he is fairly new to the personal training vocation, Cooper’s business, Legit Fitness LLC, isn’t new to working with zoo staff. His first client and the person who pushed him to create his business, he said, was Cindy Pinger, curator of birds and reptiles for the zoo. Completely by chance, Cooper approached Pinger at their gym after watching her lift weights with improper form, and Pinger requested further assistance in her workouts. “I can’t remember what exactly she was doing – if she was deadlifting or squatting – but she looked like she was about to break her back,” Cooper said. “She once told me that I should be a personal trainer and it helped me make the decision to start my business.” Cooper said he has always had a passion for athleticism, whether in high school or training for his past career as a correctional officer. “I’m a big believer in using exercise to help your mind,” he said. “I don’t tend to use a lot of heavy lifting in my workouts. It’s more about using your own body against itself with things like lunges and squats.”

He said he likes to keep a light atmosphere with fun music and an upbeat atmosphere. Though Cooper likes a laid back environment, he said he doesn’t let his client’s slide while

Meet the team: Above, Ajani is a slow starter, but steady. Callee, in front, below, gets points for enthusiasm and personality. Left, Bulwagi is the obvious leader, large and in charge. Journal photos by Lee Walls Jr.

they are working and sweating. “There are no shortcuts in my workouts,” he said. “If I see you slacking off and not giving it your all, I’ll call you out on it.” A bonus for attendees, those who participate in the $100 week of workouts will be supporting elephant conservation through the International Elephant Foundation. “We work with various conservation programs, but IEF is one of the largest elephant conservations organizations in the world,” Schillinger said. “Their efforts are very focused so we thought that would be the most effective way to give back.” Guests interested in attending the Exercise with Elephants boot camp can register on the zoo’s website. For more information, visit ❖

Thursday, August 11, 2016 • 11



Interns Put the Shine on Autism Gala gala helps fund them,” Jeffords said. Organization officials said that preparing for the gala is an all-handson-deck situation. The event will celebrate children and adults on the autism spectrum who benefit from the organization’s support and programs, including respite stipends, first responder training, Autism Friendly Alabama, Camp FROG and the SAFE campaign.

“With the help of our interns, we are able to gather more items for the auctions at a faster pace and they learn about our programs and autism spectrum disorders. It’s a win-win,” said fundraising manager Lauren Reid. Tickets are $65 and include a seated dinner, music and both silent and live auctions. Emcees for the evening will be JOX Roundtable personalities Lance Taylor, Jim Dunaway and Ryan

Brown. Some of the items up for auction are a trip to Lake Tahoe and a shopping spree a Bloomingdales in Chicago. Additionally, there will be a drawing for an “Ultimate Roll Tide Package,” with transportation and accommodations to the Crimson Tide’s opening game in Arlington, Texas. For more information, visit ❖

Photo special to the Journal

“Michelle Creamer matched us with the perfect house.” Autism Society of Alabama staff members gearing up for the Autism Shines Gala include: front, from left, Lauren Reid, fundraising manager; Melanie Jones, executive director; Dr. Bama Hager, program director. Back: Maggie Jeffords, intern; Ben Carlisle, board vice president; and Glynna Johnson, intern.

By Emily Williams The Autism Society of Alabama is calling all college students in search of work experience to take part in the organization’s 18th annual Autism Shines Gala. The event will be held Aug. 20 from 6 to 10 p.m. at the Birmingham Marriot, and the organization’s planning team members said they could never be fully prepared without the help of college interns. “Our organization has been fortunate to meet so many talented students who are seeking experience in preparation to enter the workforce,” said ASA Executive Director Melanie Jones. “Interns come from various fields of study such as psychology majors, others public relations and event planning, social work and even accounting. Student interns gain insight on all of the moving parts of a nonprofit and learn that fundraising is critical to

support programs.” According to current intern Glynna Johnson, interning for ASA is a nice diversion from her academic work. Johnson is pursuing a master’s degree in accounting at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. “I could certainly see my skillset being useful at a nonprofit,” Johnson said. “Assisting with the gala and other needs of the organization is really beneficial, interesting and very rewarding to know I’m helping such a wonderful cause.” The program director for the organization, Dr. Bama Hager, is being aided by University of Mississippi junior Maggie Jeffords, who is seeking experience to complement her major in psychology. “I’m amazed at the amount of work that is involved in implementing so many different events. I’m learning about all the programs the Autism Society of Alabama offers and how the

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Camp SAM Supporters Dance the Night Away at Annual Fundraiser


ore than 700 people made their way to Regions Field on July 29 for the 10th annual Funky Monkey fundraiser, hosted by Camp Smile-A-Mile’s junior board of directors and presented by Altec. While many guests bid in silent and live auctions, DJ The Toddfather kept people on the dance floor all night. Helping host the event was junior board President Justin Bacon, along with fellow officers Matthew Dyer, Blake Rhodes, Adam Grinfield, Jordan Jones, Mark Brown, Lauren Higgins and Katie Green. Officers were supported by board members at large Margaret Angelillo, Andrea Bowens, Colleen Denver, Taylor Dyer, Christina Hooper, Drew Hooper, Pierce Huggins, Alicia Irwin, Brian Jones, Tina Liollio, Maury Lyon, Alexis Marcus, Jennifer Myers, Samantha Nicolle, Cindy Piedra, Betsy Reamer, Thomas Rice, Leslie-Ann Snead, Eric Sturevant, Brian Vukovich, Tiffany Vukovich, Sam Wilcox and Melissa Wilson. All funds raised through the event will directly support the organization’s year-round programs for young cancer patients, their families and young adult survivors from Alabama. Guests spotted dancing the night away included Sumner and John Rives, Hillary and Ryan Weiss, Sheryl and Jon Kimerling, Taylor and Matthew Dyer, Tonya Jones Combs and Bryan Combs, Allison and Justin Bacon, Kim and Bob Whelan, Tyler and John Parker Wilson, Betsy and Cory Reamer, Katherine and Richard Brown, Sarah and Zach LeBlanc and D’Ann and Bill Somerall. ❖

Photos special to the Journal

Get Funky! From left: Jon and Sheryl Kimerling, Shelby Kimerling, Wayne Suttle and Joel Kimerling.

Tiffany and Brian Vukovich.

Courtney Lawson and Claire Adams.

Cory and Betsy Reamer.

Cassie and Gary Parker.

Stephanie Burrus, Adam Grinfield and Katie Green.



Thursday, August 11, 2016 • 13

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From left: Sue Johnson, Bill Clark, Mike Anderson and Hatton Smith. Below, big sister participant, Lauren, with her little sister Oymora.

All Things Big and Small Little Stars Shine at Big Brothers Big Sisters Annual Gala

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Birmingham hosted its fifth annual dinner and showcase, A Night of Big Stars, July 30 at the Harbert Center. In partnership with the Dance Foundation, a group of Littles – the younger brothers and sisters involved in the program – performed choreographed songs and dances for a room full of guests. The cast was joined on stage by American Idol finalist Jessica Meuse. Host for the evening, guiding guests through a cocktail hour, dinner and show, was emcee Mike Royer. Honorary chairmen for the event were University of Alabama at Birmingham football coach Bill Clark and Royal Cup Coffee’s Hatton Smith. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Birmingham CEO Sue Johnson and board President Mike Anderson presented awards for bigs and littles of the year to Steve Wadley, Big Brother of the Year; Currion Dunson, Little Brother of the Year; Christie Borton, Big Sister of the Year; and Tamiah Murray, Little Sister of the Year. Johnson and Anderson then awarded the first annual Founders Legacy Award to Duane Donner, managing partner of Founders Investment banking, for his contributions to the organization. Following the show, a live auction was held featuring a variety of packages, most notably a wine-tasting trip to Sonoma, California, a Ski trip to Lake Tahoe and an original piece of art from local artist Frank Fleming. The proceeds from the evening will support the BBBS’s efforts to match local children facing adversity with mentors. ❖

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On the Rocks, Please

Museum Hosts Second Installment of Summer Series

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Jesse Dolan and Maria Alvarez.

AJ Jongewaard and Sarah Christiaans. Below, Meredith Knight and Greg Randall assist guests at a Yellowhammer Creative screen-printing table.





The Birmingham Museum of Art was taken over by local artists, food and live performances July 22 for the second installment of the annual three-part summer series Art on the Rocks. Guests were greeted inside with a garden party-themed photo booth and an array of hors d’oeuvres that included a hummus spread and flatbread pizzas. Dance performances entranced attendants as members of the Notinee Indian Dance troupe performed Indian classical-fold-fusion dances. In the garden, local artist Devonte Hold created an original piece, giving guests a glimpse of his

Miranda and Zac Taylor.

process. Gallery tours of some of the museum’s exhibits were given by local performer Miss Sharon. A Yellowhammer Creative screen printing table was on hand, providing guests with the opportunity to embel-

lish tote bags and paper with prints of some of the museum’s most recognizable pieces of art. This month’s event featured a stage performance on the back patio beginning with an opening set by Blue Healer and a headlining set by Nashville indie band The Lonely Biscuits. ❖

Thursday, August 11, 2016 • 15



Noir Party

ACS Junior Board Hosts Annual Black Out Cancer Event Proceeds from the evening will help fund the organization’s efforts to support cancer research, education programs, advocacy efforts and patient services throughout the Birmingham area. For those guests who wanted to keep the party going past midnight, an official after party was held at Innisfree Irish Pub in Lakeview. Junior board members in attendance included Hanna Holsomback, Rachel Keydoszius, Miller Coop, Courtney Rushing, Nick Goudreau, Catherine Goudreau, Alex Huffman, Mindy Ruggiero, Amanda Ford, Haley Edwards, Kimberly Early, Cameron Pearce, Dawson Smith, Rachael Sherrer and Dnika Joseph. ❖

Guests dressed in their best and darkest shades of attire for the American Cancer Society of Birmingham Junior Executive Board’s annual Black Out Cancer fundraiser. The eighth annual event, held June 17 at Iron City, included complimentary beer and wine as well as an array of food. Livewire provided the music for a packed dance floor at the beginning of the evening, followed by DJ Mark AD. A silent auction featured offerings from restaurant and retail gift cards to gym memberships and spa packages. Some big ticket items included a variety of vacations. A seven-night stay in Antigua, a week in St. Lucia and five nights in Panama were up for grabs by the highest bidder.

From left: Hope Kyker, Leyna Lee and Courtney Thomas.

ool Sch cally o k To Bac with L ts. le ty shir In S ade Tia, M stav g Ve rn din Aubu lu c In ma & Ba

From left: Brady Wilson, Monsignor Martin Muller, Mary Jane Dorn and Lollie Wilson.

A Pat on the Back

OLS Hosts Thank You Dinner Following Patriotic Celebration More than 200 volunteers and their families joined the staff of Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church July 27 for a dinner to show the church’s appreciation for their hard work pulling together the 67th annual Independence Day Festival. “Indeed, if you ever consider the amount of work that goes into the Fourth of July festival, it’s astounding, it’s unbelievable, it’s record breaking. My job is to thank you, thank you, thank you. Your volunteerism is beyond description or imagination,” Monsignor Martin Muller, pastor at OLS, told guests. During the catered dinner, Muller said that not only was the event a parish project, it was a community effort because many volunteers were from outside the parish. “I have to thank all of you,” he said. “There are so many of you who don’t get the credit you deserve. All I can say is God will give you the credit.” The festival was organized under the direction of the Knights of Columbus Council 4304. During the dinner, new Grand Knight Chad Gentry expressed his gratitude before awarding the proceeds to OLS School

On Par

The UAB Department of Surgery hosted its first golf tournament June 18 at the Robert Trent Jones Oxmoor Valley par-3 course. Tournament contests included a “beat the chair” and “program director” challenge. A first hole shoot-out from 135 yards yielded a first prize of $50,000. A hole-in-one on the 18th hole from 140 yards had a potential prize of $10,000, and a three-stage putting contest from 10, 30 and 50 feet awarded $5,000 to a player who could make all three holes consecutively. The event was sponsored by ARC Realty and Brooke Wahl. Funds

Photos special to the Journal

UAB Surgery Takes to the Course to Support Residency Program

From left: Richard Stahl, Phil Megison, Michael Megison and Thomas Wang.

raised through the event will support the UAB General Surgery Residency

Program, which trains the next generation of surgical leaders. ❖

Principal Mary Jane Dorn and Muller. “I just want to thank Father Muller, thank the Knights of Columbus and all of you. This goes to the operating budget for the school, helps keep expenses down and our tuition affordable,” Dorn said. Muller accepted two checks: one on behalf of the OLS Building Fund and the other on behalf of the parish’s St. Vincent DePaul Charity Fund. According to Muller, the funds will go toward building at least two water wells in Africa that will serve 300 people. The remainder of the proceeds will be used for the charitable efforts of the Knights. ❖

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Just a Taste

Local Chefs and Restaurants Cook for the Choir The Birmingham Boys Choir hosted its primary fundraising event, Taste of Birmingham, July 29 at The Club. The evening included samples of signature dishes from local restaurants with a judged contest to award the best tastes in Birmingham. The annual event benefits the organization’s mission to provide boys in the Greater Birmingham area with the opportunity to develop their vocal gifts through concentrated study. Dr. Elizabeth Peters served as chairwoman for the sixth annual event with David Malone taking the stage as emcee. Fellow members of the Taste of Birmingham committee included Charlotte Rumore, Veronica Wehby-Upchurch, Mary Rooney, Rashikia Washington and Anne Rand. Twenty-one restaurants were represented throughout the venue, offering tastes and treats to guests while they either listened to a Birmingham Boys Choir performance directed by Ken Berg or bid on a variety of items offered in a silent auction. Judges awarded the premiere Taster’s Choice Award to Grille 29 for its pan seared sea scallop topped with bacon jam over a bed of lobster mashed potatoes and southern chow chow. Silvertron Cafe took home the award for a sweet dish and GianMarcos was given an award for best savory dish. Putting in their 2 cents, the choristers named The Bright Star their favorite taste of the evening. To finish the fundraiser bang, guests gathered by windows and on the veranda for a fireworks display. ❖ Members of the Birmingham Boys Choir.

Silvertron Chef Patrick Horn.

Above, from left: Claire Sizemore, Dr. Elizabeth Peters and Cindy Wade. Below, Bill and Mary Rooney.



Thursday, August 11, 2016 • 17

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18 • Thursday, August 11, 2016


Journal photo by Emily Williams

AllSouth has established showrooms in Huntsville, Montgomery and Chattanooga, but the new Homewood location is pushing boundaries, ushering in the company’s 20th anniversary by featuring the nation’s largest SubZero/Wolf living kitchen.

home inspection: For years, Tyler Hillman, above, said, he relied on catalogs and books to educate customers on AllSouth’s offerings, but nothing beats seeing the product in person. AllSouth’s new showroom is located at 345 State Farm Parkway, off Lakeshore Parkway in Homewood.

In the Kitchen

By Emily Williams Tyler Hillman, co-owner of AllSouth Appliance Group, has had a busy summer, and it doesn’t seem to be slowing down as the company continues to tweak and perfect the interior of its new Homewood showroom. The space, which opened in early June, offers Birmingham consumers the opportunity to peruse high-end and mid-range kitchen appliances, cabinetry, countertops and more. Hillman said it’s an achievement that he never expected when he and his brother Josh started the company in 1997. “I had been in the appliance business for a few years in the Birmingham market, and I saw gaps in some of the products that local vendors were offering,” he said. The Hillman brothers set out to build a company that offered appliances at the high-end range while also giving consumers a good selection of mid-range products. For years, Hillman said, he relied on catalogs and books to educate customers on AllSouth’s offerings, but nothing beats seeing the product in person. AllSouth has established showrooms in Huntsville, Montgomery and Chattanooga, but the new Homewood location is pushing boundaries, ushering in the company’s 20th anniversary by featuring the nation’s largest SubZero/ Wolf living kitchen. The achievement is something Hillman said he couldn’t have seen coming one decade ago, let alone two. “You’re never really sure where you will end up years in the future,” he said. “The goal for the company has always been the same and that goal is a satisfied customer. If you reach that goal, then the rest will follow as a result.” Though they are still putting the finishing touches on the showroom, Hillman said they have saved some space in

the building to create an outdoor showroom. “It goes hand-in-hand with the indoor showroom,” he said. “We want to serve those customers who have completed an indoor project and want to create the same environment outdoors.” A grill is no longer just a grill, according to Hillman, and many popular models such as the coveted Green Egg have attachments to expand functionality. “Grills have really developed a following around here,” Hillman said. “Everyone has their favorite model and brand just (as) they do with an automobile.” The pride of the new building – the test kitchen – will begin serving as a multi-functional event space. AllSouth has and will continue to host various events, including live demonstrations, classes and lunch and learn sessions. “We want to bring people in our door for reasons beyond shopping, and this space is going to be good for hosting different events,” Hillman said. “We’ve had a girl’s nights out and tasting events. Even if someone is just thinking about renovating their kitchen in the future, they get the opportunity to get a feel for what they need.” Hillman said he enjoyed the unusual opportunity to slip into the shoes of a customer fairly recently when he and his wife chose to build a new home. “One of the best parts about the whole experience was getting a true taste of what our clients and customers go through,” he said. When entering the experience, Hillman said, he thought he would be saving some money because he would be supplying the appliances for the kitchen – one of the most

expensive rooms in a home. He quickly found that he was wrong and experienced the same surprise expenses that many homeowners loathe to be presented with during the building process. “There are so many other factors when you are building and so many big decisions to make, so when it comes down to the finer details at the end, you are happy to just pick something so you can check it off of the list,” he said. That’s where he said he finds it is easy to make a mistake. “People who renovate or redecorate their kitchen are making an investment,” he said. “The kitchen is the room that can add the highest value to a home, so when you are choosing cabinets and appliances, you want longevity.” When a customer walks into a general hardware

Though they are still putting the finishing touches on the showroom, Hillman said they have saved some space in the building to create an outdoor showroom.

Photo special to the Journal

AllSouth Appliance’s Tyler Hillman Talks New Trends and A New Showroom

store, he said, and pick out a $1,500 refrigerator, they are buying something that will last six to 10 years. Many of the refrigerators found at AllSouth are meant to be serviced over time, prolonging their use and efficiency as well as providing more features to suit specific lifestyles. “Anyone can design a beautiful kitchen, but whether or not it is functional for you is the point that we like to address,” Hillman said. Team effort

As AllSouth prepares to mark 20 years in business, Hillman said he is grateful for the support his company has received. “Nothing has been achieved alone,” Hillman said. “We’re lucky to have a really good staff and strong partnerships with our vendors, as well as loyal relationships with reliable builders that have stuck with us over the years.” Tips and Trends

Thursday, August 11, 2016 • 19



drawer space. One of Hillman’s favorite new cabinetry products offers drawers that can be stacked above and below appliances, providing more storage space and bringing ovens and microwaves off of the floor and up to eye level. “This also has a side-swinging door, so you don’t have to bend or reach over to put something in the oven or pull it out,” Hillman said. And gone are the days of one bright shade of stainless steel. Hillman has seen a growth in the popularity of slate gray and black stainless steel, which appear lighter or darker depending on the surrounding cabinetry and lighting. Instead of traditional white or wood-colored cabinets, Hillman has been liking a new slate gray shade that is on display in the showroom. As far as gadgets and accessories go, a new favorite luxury appliance for Hillman is the Wolf Steam Oven. “It’s a moister form of cooking,” he said. “It’s not really an everyday appliance, but it’s great for reheating. If you’re microwaving a piece

of Little Caesar’s pizza, it’s probably going to taste the same. For someone who is heating homemade pizza or eats out a lot and brings home leftovers, it has much more of an impact.” An area where Hillman finds a customer can really have fun with refrigerators. One of his favorite new features is the expanded utility of GE refrigerator’s door functions. The simple crushed ice and cold water option has been expanded to include adding on a hot water feature and even a Keurig coffee maker – all controlled by a touch screen. So, what does the expert suggest before someone enters the Homewood showroom? “The internet is full of so many resources for homeowners,” he said. “If you don’t do a little research before you enter a showroom, you’ll be overrun on the sensory side of things.” He suggests that consumers take a look at websites such as houzz. com and, figure out what style appeals to them most and present it to their builder or designer or take it into the showroom. ❖

While AllSouth maintains traditional offerings such as granite countertops and dark wooden cabinets, the majority of today’s designers and consumers are shifting toward lighter wall colors and cabinetry. “It varies between customers though,” Hillman said. “I’ve found f Wood window restoration and repair that people who have a dark kitchen f Sash replacement, rot repair are looking for lighter cabinets and f Replace broken and fogged glass those who have lighter kitchens lean f Wood insulated, putty glazed, and toward the darker colors.” composite vinyl replacement sashes Regardless of shades and pigments, one thing he has found to fbcalparadeofhomesad.pdf 1 6/5/16 8:40 PM Call 205-542-6094 be more popular across the board is

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20 • Thursday, August 11, 2016



Photos by Rip Weaver

Going Native: Sid McLean estimates he has spent at least 15 years, on and off, helping the yard live up to its potential. Staying true to his mother’s landscaping style, McLean said he chiefly chose flowering trees and shrubs such as dogwoods, cherry blossoms and azaleas to repopulate the yard. Another of his landscaping goals was to embrace the native plant life of Alabama, including large pine and oak trees.

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By Sarah Kuper Having lived in many areas of the

country, Sid and Gayleen McLean always embrace new habitats, both personally and horticulturally. “Everywhere we have ever lived we have done the landscaping. It’s something I learned from my mother,” Sid McLean said. The couple had retired and moved out west, but when Sid McLean inherited his parent’s home in Hoover, they came back and began to make the house their own. “The home needed renovations, standard stuff, and especially the yard. It was practically all trees and brush – it was a mess,” Sid McLean McLean said. Instead of searching for the best landscapers in town, McLean decided to take a more do-it-yourself approach. In fact, McLean estimates he has spent at least 15 years, on and off, helping the yard live up to its poten-



tial. The McLean’s backyard now includes a pool (he did have some professional help there), an outdoor kitchen, terraced landscaping and accent planters. McLean said he cleared out more than 100 trees and bushes at the start of the project and proceeded to work on building drainage systems, retaining walls and pathways to give the land some depth. “We planted dozens of trees, hundreds of shrubs ... we moved a lot of dirt.” When McLean’s parents lived in the home, his mother was an active gardener and especially loved azaleas. “The yard was very showy and I always admired that. Fortunately, this is azalea country,” McLean said. Staying true to his mother’s landscaping style, McLean said he chiefly chose flowering trees and shrubs such as dogwoods, cherry blossoms and azaleas to repopulate the yard. Another of his landscaping goals was to embrace the native plant life of Alabama, including large pine and oak trees. Although he feels he is finished with large-scale changes to the yard, McLean is hesitant to call the yard finished. “There will always be things here and there. I may change or add a few things eventually.” For now, the couple is enjoying the finished outdoor kitchen for Fourth of July parties, family reunions and, most recently, a 90th birthday party for a relative. As Aldridge Gardens members

in Hoover, the McLean’s recently opened their yard to those interested

‘The yard was very showy and I always admired that. Fortunately, this is azalea country.’ in hearing a more in-depth how-to on DIY landscaping. “I’m not sure I’m really one to

give advice, it is just something I did over time. I’ll say it is a lot of work and expense and it isn’t always for everybody,” McLean said. Aldridge Gardens hosts and organizes events throughout the year for members and non-members. This fall, Art in the Garden, a juried art show, will be Sept. 24-25 and the gardens will host a Native American celebration called Whispers from the Past on Oct. 2. For more information, visit ❖

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Ten Days to Dine Out Birmingham Restaurant Week Showcases City’s Food with Special Deals, Events

Avo and Dram Whiskey Bar owner Tom Sheffer, left, and general manager Bret Bright, right, are preparing the two adjoining Mountain Brook Village restaurants for their first year of participation in Birmingham Restaurant Week, beginning Aug. 12.

By Donna Cornelius Dining out is fun, especially in the metro Birmingham area. There are new restaurants to try, old favorites to revisit and menus that range from hamburgers and fries, to French, to farm-totable. In recent years, the city’s culinary culture has been like Chef Emeril Lagasse’s concoctions: kicked up a notch. Last year, Birmingham had the top spot on Zagat’s America’s Next Hot Food Cities list. Whether you’re a restaurant regular or a special occasion diner, an upcoming 10-day event gives you the opportunity to eat out at reduced prices. Eateries participating in Birmingham Restaurant Week, set for Aug. 12-20, will offer special two and/or three-course prix-fixe lunch and/or dinner menus for $5, $10, $20 or $30 per person. Several menus will include beer or wine flight components, brunch offerings and drink specials. Restaurants also will offer a signature cocktail made with Cooper’s Craft bourbon from Brown Foreman, this year’s BRW liquor sponsor.

Other cities will participate in Alabama Restaurant Week, which also begins Aug. 12. But Birmingham’s culinary celebration actually predates the statewide event. BRW is an initiative of REV Birmingham, an economic development organization, and was the brainchild of James Little, REV neighborhood district manager and Birmingham Restaurant Week director. After attending Atlanta Restaurant Week in 2009, he wanted to bring a similar event to Birmingham, he said. “I met with Style Advertising and a few other people, and we had our first Birmingham Restaurant Week in 2010,” Little said. “A few years later, the Alabama Tourism Department reached out. They were having the Year of Alabama Food and wanted to meet with us about having an Alabama Restaurant Week. The format is the same, and we try to have the two events in conjunction.” BRW officials expect about 70 Birminghamarea restaurants to participate this year. “Restaurants must be locally owned and operated,” Little said. “Our tagline is ‘For the Love of

See restaurant week, page 24

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Annette Ritchey and her son, Jeremy Ritchey, above, are the new chairmen of Saint George Melkite Catholic Church’s annual Middle Eastern Food Festival. Culinary This year’s festival is Sept. 8, Community News and 9 and 10 at the church, 425 16th Events Ave. South in Birmingham. The Ritcheys are taking over their leadership roles from longtime chairmen Dr. Eddie Thomas and Andrew Baroody. Annette Ritchey managed and assisted with the festival’s food steam tables and has organized fundraising events for the church’s youth group. Jeremy Ritchey has assisted with organizing the festival’s drive-through service. On the festival menu are homemade Middle Eastern foods such as baked kibbee, stuffed grape leaves, Mediterranean-style chicken, falafel, meat pies, spinach pies and an assortment of Middle Eastern pastries (below workers of all ages are preparing for the event). Festival hours are from 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. each day. Downtown lunch deliveries will be available for orders of $75 or more. For takeout or delivery orders, call 495-9621. Church tours will be conducted each day until 8 p.m. For more information, visit or follow the festival on Facebook.

See food news, page 24

Photos special to the Journal

Journal photo by Emily Williams

Mother-Son Team: Middle Eastern Food Festival Has New Leaders


Thursday, August 11, 2016 • 23


Rehab Reality by Jeff Butler

Journal photos by Emily Williams

Home Is Where the Heart Is.

From left: Ginger Busby, Elise Serota and Jennifer Lawes.

An Artistic Affair UCP’s Vino & Van Gogh Is Set for Aug. 18 at Iron City

By Donna Cornelius Robert Mondavi could have been writing a tagline for Vino & Van Gogh when he said wine is “warmth of heart and generosity of spirit. Wine is art.” That’s because the annual event centers on both wine and art – and it gives warm-hearted, generous folks an opportunity to support United Cerebral Palsy of Greater Birmingham. Set this year for 6 to 10 p.m. on Aug. 18 at Iron City Bham, Vino & Van Gogh is hosted by the UCP junior board. “We’ll have wine tastings from four vendors, a band – Almost Brothers – and live and silent auctions,” said Jennifer Lawes, junior board president. “Bunni Miller will create a piece of art during the event, and it will be part of the auction.” Those who attend Vino & Van Gogh can bid on another painting that has a special connection to UCP of Greater Birmingham. Artist Elise Serota visited UCP’s preschool, the Hand in Hand Early Learning Program, and enlisted the help of some little hands. The result is a bright, colorful painting Serota calls “The Beauty Within.” The children’s handprints are incorporated into a painted tree in the design. “The handprints are symbolic of climbing the tree of life,” Serota said. “With art, there are no limits, no boundaries and the sky’s the limit – and that’s what this painting is all about. It’s about the beauty that surrounds us daily, and the kids and teachers at Hand in Hand are such an example of that.” Serota, a graphic artist, said she started with a rich acrylic medium, molded it, and then painted on top of it. After the children had added their handiwork, she put on the finishing touches and glazed the painting with a varnish. Serota said she loved collaborating on the painting with the Hand in Hand children. “It was an awesome experience,” she said. “It changed me more than it changed them.” Other auction items include artwork, photos, restaurant gift cards, beach and quail-hunting trips, and a package that’s likely to spur some lively bid-

Those who attend Vino & Van Gogh can bid on another painting that has a special connection to UCP of Greater Birmingham. Artist Elise Serota visited UCP’s preschool, the Hand in Hand Early Learning Program, and enlisted the help of some little hands. The result is a bright, colorful painting Serota calls “The Beauty Within.” The children’s handprints are incorporated into a painted tree in the design.

ding by football fans. It includes two tickets to the SEC Championship Game in Atlanta with accommodations at the Hyatt Regency and two tickets to both the Coaches Luncheon and Legends Dinner. During Vino & Van Gogh, Iron City will provide “heavy appetizers and indulgent desserts from its farm-to-table dining room,” said Jennifer Dowdle, UCP of Greater Birmingham’s marketing director. One of the participants in the event’s wine tasting is Neighborhood Hops and Vine in the Shops of Crestline Park. “We opened in July 2011,” owner Ginger Busby said. “We lived in the neighborhood at the time and had worked in beer and wine. We saw there was a need. Being a local wine shop with coaching and helping people make informed beer and wine deci-

sions was a dream we had.” She said she’ll try to offer a “good view to what our store does” at Vino & Van Gogh. “That means championing brands that are good quality and good value – things off the beaten path,” Busby said. “We’ll have some bubbles and a good mix of reds and whites – and rosé. Rosé is year-round a top seller.” Forest Pitts, store manager and wine buyer, worked with Busby on wine selections for the Vino & Van Gogh tasting and said he looks forward to meeting people at the event. Those who attend the fundraiser can participate in a wine pool. “You buy a ticket – there’s a limited number – and don’t know what you’ll get, because all the wine is wrapped,” Busby said. “It could be from a $15 to a $50 bottle of wine.” Vino & Van Gogh raises money for UCP of Greater Birmingham programs designed to promote self-reliance, present choices and improve the quality of life for children and adults with disabilities. The organization serves more than 4,000 infants, children and adults with disabilities, including intellectual disabilities, traumatic brain injury, developmental disabilities, cerebral palsy, autism, Down syndrome and spina bifida. UCP’s Hand in Hand Early Learning Program serves 195 children and their families. Children with and without disabilities learn, play and grow together in the inclusive program. UCP’s Dowdle said Vino & Van Gogh helps provide $100,000 in Hand in Hand scholarships each year. Neighborhood Hops and Vine has participated in Vino & Van Gogh since 2012, Ginger Busby said. “We got involved because we had a customer who was on the UCP board, Mike Roy,” she said. “When we got to the event, we realized it was a lot of fun. It’s a good way to connect with customers, and it’s for a cause that’s important.” Tickets to Vino & Van Gogh are $35 per person and $60 per couple. To buy tickets or for more information, visit Iron City Bham is at 513 22nd St. S. in Birmingham. ❖

This is a common phrase we’ve all heard. HOME for some is where drama is played out everyday. Sometimes it’s with children trying to determine their beliefs as it relates to all the influences around them. Sometimes it’s with adults who reach a point of despair over finances, desires and disappointments. One would think that HOME is the appropriate place for this drama, a safe haven. It’s only when drugs or alcohol become the self-medicating method of one or more of the family members that it becomes a danger. Drugs and alcohol numb the senses. They affect each person differently. For some it becomes a ‘deep sleep’ – for some a stimulant for aggression allowing the person to vent, to say and do things that otherwise would never have been said or done.

The child that lives in this environment will likely carry the memories of the pain and confusion of HOME that can leave lasting scars and many times results in similar behavior as the parents or “learned behavior”. When we refer to Bayshore Retreat as having a HOME environment it means we try very hard to remove the stigma of rehab and provide a nurturing place to get quality counseling to address some of the issues that have brought our clients to a point where a substance has taken control of his or her life and that of the family.

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24 • Thursday, August 11, 2016

From page 22

Local.’” Birmingham Restaurant Week includes several special events. Returning this year is Wine-ol-ogy, a wine flight tasting with food and entertainment. It’s from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Aug. 17 at the Wine Loft, 2200 First Ave. N. in downtown Birmingham. “We added this event because we didn’t want BRW to be just about eating out but more like a festival,” Little said. “We have a theme every year. This year, it’s the Olympics. We’ll have different food and wine pairings that will represent each continent that participates in the Olympics. We work with the Wine Loft on the pairings.” New to the BRW menu is Brunch, which will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Aug. 20. This family-friendly brunch tasting from Birmingham-area restaurants will be at Social Venture, 5529 First Ave.

South, in Woodlawn. “The Birmingham food scene is growing, and we wanted to do something around brunch,” Little said. “We’ll have participating restaurants offering brunch bites, a culinary village with products people can buy, a mimosa bar, iced coffee and nitro coffee, and music.” This year’s BRW restaurant list includes past participants and newcomers. One Over the Mountain restaurant that’s been on board for several years is Vino in Mountain Brook. “We’ve been involved with Birmingham Restaurant Week ever since Vino opened, so about five years,” owner Al Rabiee said. “It’s just a really good cultural event. It’s good for our city and for local restaurants.” Vino last year opened the Gallery Bar, which serves drinks and appetizers. Both places will be represented in BRW offerings, Rabiee said. The restaurant’s $30 dinner menu includes several appetizer options: classic Caesar salad, a salad with

strawberries and candied walnuts, roasted garlic and tomato bisque or lamb bisque. Entrees are Pappardelle con Funghi with grilled chicken, Grouper Farfella with roasted tomatoes and artichoke hearts, or stuffed pork tenderloin. Dessert choices are apple fritters and ice cream or Chilton County peach and mixed berry cobbler a la mode. He said BRW gives his restaurant a chance to introduce its food to those who haven’t eaten it. “I think we get the opportunity to bring people in who ordinarily aren’t familiar with our restaurant,” Rabiee said. “They get to eat at an affordable price. Hopefully, they’ll have a good experience, leave with good memories and come back.” BRW newcomers this year include Avo and Dram Whiskey Bar. Owner Tom Sheffer said he wanted to help support “the larger Birmingham community.” “We’re located in Mountain Brook, but we’re all in this together,” Sheffer said. “This helps create a family environment for all the

restaurants. And the event brings in regulars and new people. I think it’s a nice way for people to try our food.” Avo and Dram general manager Bret Bright said BRW comes at a good time because families have returned home from summer vacations and because college and graduate students will be back in town. “This gives them a chance to try restaurants – and for us to showcase our food,” Bright said. The restaurant has come up with a $30-per-person dinner menu for BRW. Diners can choose an appetizer of gazpacho, deviled eggs or sesame salad. Main course options include shrimp Masala with Alabama white shrimp, mild east Indian spices and jasmine rice; lightly-smoked pork loin with local sweet potatoes and summer peas; or grilled salmon salad with local spinach, red onion, pecans and sorghum vinaigrette. Diners can end their meals on a sweet note by choosing either doughnut holes with caramel-Madei-

ra dipping sauce and spiced honey or triple chocolate pudding with chocolate-caramel ice cream, dark chocolate crumble and raspberry whipped cream. The Kentucky Coupe is a special BRW drink made with Cooper’s Craft bourbon, house vanilla syrup, St. Germaine elderflower liqueur and lemon juice. Served straight up, it’s $10. “This drink was created just for this event, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see it end up on our menu,” Sheffer said. Guests also can order from the regular Avo and Dram menus during Restaurant Week, he added. For more information about Birmingham Restaurant Week, including a list of participating restaurants and their special menus, visit You also can follow BRW on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter. Social media users can interact with BRW by tagging @bhamrestweek and using #BRW2016, the official event hashtag. ❖

food news,

S., Birmingham. Musical entertainment includes The SBG’s, Matthew Mayfield and Lee and Brian of T.U.B. The event benefits the Alabama Center for Childhood Matthew Mayfield Cancer and Blood Disorders at Children’s of Alabama. Tickets, which include admission and food, are $20 in advance and $25 at the door. Admission is free for ages 10 and younger. For tickets and more information, visit boogie.

The Tuscaloosa store will be the first Urban Cookhouse with a drive-through window so that patrons can call ahead and pick up their orders. The first Urban Cookhouse opened in Homewood in 2010. Other Birmingham locations are at The Summit and in Mountain Brook’s Crestline Village. It operates two farmers markets, one in Homewood and one at The Summit, and has other stores throughout the Southeast.

From page 22

For Information on Packs & Troops in the Over the Mountain Area Contact Will McIntyre District Director Call: 205-541-4292 or Email:

Greater Alabama Council

Football Fundraiser: Bell Center Gets Ready for Tailgate Challenge

The Bell Center’s Tailgate Challenge gives the center’s supporters a fun way to get ready for football. This year’s fundraiser is Aug. 27 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Bell Center in Homewood. The event has tastes of tailgating food at team tents, music and kidfriendly activities. Celebrity judges will be on hand to award prizes for the most team spirit, best-tasting food and best all-around entry. Tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for ages 4 to 10. For tickets or more information, visit For sponsorship information or to reserve a spot for a team tent, call Kelly Peoples at The Bell Center at 879-3417 or email her at kpeoples@thebellcenter. org. See page 4 for more details.

Boogie Fever: Full Moon Hosts Back-to-School Event

Full Moon Bar-B-Que will present the Back to School Boogie, a family-friendly event with food and music, Aug. 27 from 4 to 7 p.m. at Haven, 2515 Sixth Ave.

To: Will From: Over the Mountain Journal 823-9646 ph, 824-1246 fax Date: July 2016 This is your ad proof for the MOUNTAIN BROOK chAMBeR pUBlIcATION for the Aug. 20154issue. 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.

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A Steak in the Game: Alabama Cattlemen Seek State’s Best Rib-Eye

Nominations are closed for the 2016 Alabama’s Best Steak contest, but there’s still time to vote for your favorites. The contest is sponsored by the Alabama Cattlemen’s Association. Eatery Expansion: Urban During the first round of the contest, Cookhouse Will Open in which ended July 31, participants could submit nominations for an Alabama Tuscaloosa steakhouse that serves a rib-eye One of the Over the Mountain area’s worthy of the title of Alabama’s Best most popular fast-casual restaurants Steak. will open a Tuscaloosa location. The restaurants chosen for the Urban Cookhouse announced plans contest’s “Elite 8” are competing in a to open later this year in the Village poll challenge on the ACA Facebook at Northbank, a new Tuscaloosa page through Aug. 12. Those with the development just off Rice Mine most votes will advance to blind taste Road and next to the Church of the tests in the “Fiery 4” round. That’s Highlands. when contest judges will anonymously visit each finalist to judge the overall flavor, tenderness and juiciness of the restaurant’s rib-eye. The 2016 Alabama’s Best Steak winner will be announced at the beginning of October to kick off Beef Month in Alabama. ❖ Tailgate Challenge at last years fundraiser for The Bell Center. Photo special to the Journal

restaurant week,


Thursday, August 11, 2016 • 25



Vestavia Chamber Hosts Annual Back to School Celebration

Journal photo by Emily Williams

By Emily Williams

Steve Shelton, general manager of Western Supermarket on Rocky Ridge, has a long-standing partnership with the Exceptional Education Department at Vestavia Hills High School, providing a place for students with special needs to gain experience in the work force.

Learning by Doing

VHHS Exceptional Education Partners With Local Businesses By Emily Williams At Vestavia Hills High School, students with special needs are not enrolled in “special education,” their courses are a part of the school’s Exceptional Education Department. According to officials with the department, the team of educators and support staff work to create a comprehensive learning experience that often takes students out of the classroom and into the real world to learn a trade through a work instruction program. One of the partnering businesses in the community is Western Supermarket on Rocky Ridge Road. “We have several students who work there throughout the year to learn the job skills necessary to successfully hold a job after high school,” said department head Denise Brundege. For Western General Manager Steve Shelton, the partnership was a no-brainer. Shelton is a former physical education teacher who worked closely with students with special needs during his education career. “I realize what it takes to get a kid who may not have all of the tools mentally to learn a new skill,” he said. “It’s just like trying to knock down three pins with a bowling ball in a gym class. It’s all about getting that kid who is in the wheelchair to find a way to knock them down. These kids are capable of a lot more than people would think.” Western has been a community-

based work instruction site for about five years. Shelby said that, though he may not be able to hire all of the kids who enter his store, he does his best to find a place for 10 percent to 20 percent of the students. “If they are good workers and I have the space to accommodate them, then there is no reason for me not to

‘Everybody deserves the opportunity to learn a trade. I’m very happy that I can help these students grow and learn new skills and a sense of empowerment that comes with working and the pride of doing a good job.’ find a place for someone,” he said. One of his workers has been with him for at least five years and in that time worked her way up to manning the salad bar. When an exceptional education student enters the doors of his store to work, Shelton has them begin with the basics such as stacking stock and cleaning. Some of these tasks may seem basic, Shelton said, but a person who can do a great job of cleaning is an essential member of his staff. Those he keeps on after they graduate from VHHS usually are at

the front of his store, bagging groceries and engaging customers. “They are the last people that the customers see before they leave our store,” he said. “They do a great job of interacting with others and making a real connection and develop better social skills.” He added that his staff members with special needs often are the people who regular customers recognize and flock to when they are shopping. “Not everybody who comes here has the ability to bag groceries,” Shelton said. “There are just certain kids who don’t have the mental capacity, but those who can should have that opportunity. There are always going to be obstacles and instances where they drop the yogurt or something like that, but everybody makes mistakes.” Brundege said the department employs a work instructor, currently Nancy Crook, who is responsible for reaching out to the community to find a variety of positions that seem suitable for the students. “Everybody deserves the opportunity to learn a trade,” Shelton said. “I’m very happy that I can help these students grow and learn new skills and a sense of empowerment that comes with working and the pride of doing a good job. It’s very important for me from a personal standpoint, not just on the business side.” As VHHS welcomes a new year of students, Shelton will welcome some new workers and, maybe, a future staff member. ❖

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The Vestavia Hills Chamber of Commerce will help students and families kick off the 2016-17 school year by hosting the annual Back 2 School in the Hills event. This year marks the third year the chamber has hosted the free event and, according to event chairwoman Lisa Christopher, this year is expected to be bigger than ever. Christopher is backed by the help of fellow chamber staff members President Karen Odle, Katie Woodruff and Katie Geurin. The event began through the initiative of local businesses, said Christopher. JAMM Entertainment, Deborah’s Party Rentals, Birmingham Parent and Oliver Square officials led the inception of the now annual event. “When we were asked to be a part of this event three years ago, we happily accepted and have since taken on the leadership role,” Christopher said. The event’s purpose also complements the chamber’s Partners in Education Program, which encourages local businesses, organizations and community members to support the city’s eight schools. Because Vestavia Hills is a long

city geographically, Christopher said, the chamber chooses to host each of its largest events – I Love America Day, Back 2 School in the Hills and the Pumpkin Patch – in separate locations as a means to connect the neighborhoods. The Back 2 School in the Hills event will be Aug. 12 at Oliver Square, on Cahaba Heights Road. Taking into consideration that city elections are Aug. 23, the chamber added a new level of event sponsorship for candidates. “This will be a great opportunity for candidates to meet residents and by being a sponsor they will have the added bonus of showcasing their community support and participation,” Christopher said. The candidate sponsorship level has sold out, she said, so candidates who grabbed those slots will be the only ones permitted to distribute their campaign materials. The square will become a fairground open to the public beginning at 6:30 p.m. The space will be filled with amusement rides and inflatables for kids, a photo booth, sponsor booths, music and a family movie. Though pets aren’t invited, guests are free to bring blankets, chairs and picnics to the celebration. “We anticipate a very large crowd,” Christopher said. There will be no parking available at Oliver Square. Guests may park at Cahaba Heights United Methodist Church, where a shuttle service will run to and from the event beginning at 6 p.m. Restrooms will be available at Jazzercise. The rain date is set for Aug. 19. ❖

John Carroll student Kailian Davis tutored Cameron Hunter in a summer literacy program in Vrendenburgh.

John Carroll Students Aid POP Literacy Program Prince of Peace Catholic Church in July co-sponsored a six-week summer reading program for children living in Vredenburgh, in Monroe County. Six Prince of Peace parishioners who attend John Carroll Catholic High School traveled to the city to work with the children. Participating students were Ohtra Awad, Kailian Davis, A.J. Kingsmore, Veronica Werszner, Daniel West and Ellen Willet. According to church officials, POP has maintained a supportive relationship with the community of Vredenburgh for 25 years. The church has worked with the Sisters of St. Joseph ministry to coordinate outreach projects in the city, including planning, designing and constructing the city’s community center with help from Living Stones Temple and Sixth Avenue Baptist Church. This year, the Michael and Gillian Goodrich Foundation and the Daniel Foundation joined POP as co-sponsors of the literacy program. The groups helped Sister Kathleen Navarra of the Sisters of St. Joseph restore the town’s summer literacy program. Navarra worked closely with Better Basics to create a program that best suited the needs of the local children. In addition to lending student support, POP and the two foundations provided grant money to pay the salary of two teachers who oversaw the 35 participating children. The funds also helped provide each participant with six to eight books to take home and start a library. An after-school tutoring program will continue in the fall. ❖

26 • Thursday, August 11, 2016



Trophy Case

A decade ago, C.J. Hawkins left a successful program at Clay-Chalkville to become the new softball coach at Spain Park. On her first week at her new job, Hawkins realized the challenge she faced. “We were cleaning out the dugout and found an award they had been giving to players for diving for a fly ball – just diving for it, that’s all,” she said. “We knew then that the bar had been set too low and things needed to change.” The turnaround wasn’t immediate, but it came. Now the Lady Jaguar program is one of the best in Alabama, and it is getting national recognition. Spain Park’s staff was named the National Fastpitch Coaches Association’s South Region Coaching Staff of the Year. Members of the Lady Jag staff include Allyson Ritenour, Ryan Thompson, Eric Gibbons, Chad Miller and Jason Zajac in addition to Hawkins. The team is coming off of 40-19 record in 2016, highlighted by a trip to the Class 7A championship finals. “God has blessed us with a great community, great parents and a great group of girls,” Hawkins said. “Our coaches and players work very hard to make this program reach its potential.” It wasn’t always that way. When Hawkins first arrived, she learned

johnson, From page 28

“It was a special place, and things got very emotional when I left. But I never wanted to be anywhere but Hoover. When they called, I had to go.” Johnson describes her coaching style as “disciplinarian,” with a personal touch. “I want to create a family atmosphere where I’m considered the favorite old auntie,” she said. “I won’t necessarily scream and yell, but we will make it very clear to our players what is expected. The standards are very high at Hoover and we are going to require players to work hard to make us the best girls basketball program in the state again.” Hoover fans can expect to see a lot of fast-breaking and pressing from the Lady Bucs in the new season. “One difference between Hoover and Huntsville is that we will have more depth than we had up there,” Johnson said. “We should have as many as 12 really good players. That means we’ll be able to do more different things. I’m very impressed with the talent pool that we have.” While there is much work ahead, Johnson is taking time to savor the moment of being a Favorite Daughter returning to the scene of her high school glory days. “I love coaching,” she said. “I

that softball was far down the pecking order of girls sports at her new school. So she had to become a promoter of the game as much as a coach. “We had to make softball important to the kids,” Hawkins said. “Soccer, tennis, golf and other sports were getting more love. We were playing softball but weren’t really competing.” Hawkins’ enthusiasm for softball soon took root in the student body. More players in the Spain Park’s feeder system attended camps and played travel ball. A rising number of the school’s best girl athletes picked softball as their first-priority sport. Even girls caught up in the numbers game at schools with more softball tradition moved over to be part of the new legacy Hawkins was building. “When we got to Spain Park, a lot of kids were flipping the switch from one sport to another,” Hawkins said. “After a while, we got kids who were choosing softball first.” One reason for Spain Park’s success is the number of players who participate in travel league teams during the summer months, according to Hawkins. “Almost all our girls on the varsity play on travel ball teams that are at a very high level,” Hawkins said. “That helps them get the skills they need not only for high school, but if they want to play in college.” Hawkins, who has claimed more truly have a passion for the girls and the game. And I’m most passionate about coaching at Hoover High School again.” Johnson gave no timetable for when fans can expect their team to return to the Final Four, but she made one promise: “Our girls will give a great effort every night,” she said. “If they don’t they will definitely hear from me. I want them to have the same passion for Hoover basketball that I do. If they do that, the championships will take care of themselves.” It may have been inevitable that Krystle Johnson one day would return to coach Hoover girls basketball. Lady Buccaneer boosters are likely to be happy that it happened so soon. Summer School…

While a former Over the Mountain basketball star was returning to her roots, a current one was preparing for a new season. Hannah Barber, a rising junior at Homewood, spent most of July playing in tournaments throughout the South with the Alabama Southern Stars. She competed primarily against rising seniors. “We must have played 20, 25 games,” Barber said last week. “We saw some really good competition. There were teams from California, Florida and Georgia. It was a great experience.” Although Barber already has a well-earned reputation for intensity on the court, she said she learned a valu-

Spain Park’s staff was named the National Fastpitch Coaches Association’s South Region Coaching Staff of the Year. Members of the Lady Jag staff include head coach C.J. Hawkins, above, Allyson Ritenour, Ryan Thompson, Eric Gibbons, Chad Miller and Jason Zajac.

than 700 career wins in 21 years as a head coach, said she isn’t motivated by awards. “It’s always an honor to be recognized, but as I said, it’s not about me,” she explained. “The real thrill is to see these girls be successful. Any award the coaches receive is really about our players.” The Lady Jaguar staff wasn’t the only part of the Spain Park softball family to be honored by the NFCA. Shortstop Mary Katherine Tedder was named second-team All-American and third baseman Kynadi Tipler was

named to the South Region team. “Both girls had great seasons,” Hawkins said. “We wouldn’t have gotten as far as we did without them.” Although Hawkins has achieved her goal of making the Lady Jags one of Alabama’s elite softball programs, she never tires of promoting softball any way possible. Near the top of her wish list is to slightly change the format of the state championship tournament, which presently plays every round at Montgomery’s Lagoon Park. “I would love to see the cham-

pionship games moved to a college venue,” she said. “That would be an amazing experience for our girls.” In the meantime, Hawkins promises that she and her staff will work to make Spain Park softball better than ever. “We’re teaching the game in all our feeder programs,” she said. “The approach here will continue to breed success.” Hawkins and her staff’s journey – which began with a dugout cleaning chore just a decade ago – hasn’t reached its final destination. ❖

able lesson in the tournament about the importance of staying focused at all times. “The biggest takeaway from the tournament was that I have to keep my mind in the game on every single possession,” she said. “Against the tougher competition, there’s no time to relax. A turnover at the start of the game can be as damaging as one in the fourth quarter. It could cost your team a basket that could have won the game.” Barber helped lead the Lady Patriots to the state Class 6A championship as a freshman sensation in 2015. Homewood reached the final again the next season, before losing its crown to a red-hot LeFlore team 80-65. “It was a humbling experience,” Barber recalled. “We had expected to win (the state championship) again, and falling short was painful. But we’re going to use that as extra motivation to get back to the BJCC and win another championship this year.” Homewood resumed classes on Aug. 10. “I don’t know if I’m necessarily looking forward to going back to school,” she said, laughing. “I am looking forward to the season, and if we don’t go back to school, there’s no season.” A personal highlight of the summer for Barber was her 16th birthday, as she became a licensed driver. “It’s a lot more convenient for my

parents,” she said. “They don’t have to always be driving me around to practice or camps. It’s nice to be able to drive myself everywhere.”

With Hannah Barber at the wheel, the Lady Patriots’ championship aspirations may go back into high gear. ❖

Photo special to the Journal

By Lee Davis

Journal file photo by Marvin Gentry

Spain Park Staff Earns National Award

William L. Irons presents the Colonel George V. Irons Distance Trophies to Mountain Brook Spartans, Frances Patrick and Drew Williams at the high school’s awards day ceremonies in May.

Colonel Irons Distance Trophy Awarded at Mountain Brook Two of Mountain Brook High School’s outstanding long distance track athletes have received the 2016 Colonel George V. Irons Distance Trophy awarded at a Mountain Brook High School Assembly in May. This award is presented in memory of Dr. George V. Irons, Sr. Irons broke records throughout the south as captain of the University of Alabama Distance Team in the 1920s. The Colonel George V. Irons Distance Trophy is awarded to the top long distance track athlete who has excelled in scholarship, character and citizenship. William L. Irons, Irons’ son, presented this year’s trophies to Frances Patrick and Drew Williams at Mountain Brook High School awards day ceremonies May 17. ❖

Thursday, August 11, 2016 • 27



MOUNTAIN BROOK, line, Emmy Kilgore, Caroline Davies and Ellie Ritter. Lacey Jeffcoat will be outstanding on defense, while Libby Grace Gann will direct the offense from the setter position. Junior Mimi Meadows threatens rival defenses from the right side. Others expected to contribute are KayKay Benck, Grace Carr, Sarah Catherine Cooper, Ellie Dayhuff, Ellen Dulin, Ann Vandevelde and Lauren Walston. “Obviously we had some great leaders last season and they will be difficult to replace,” O’Quinn said. “But we also have some experienced players returning who understand the world and dedication required to win at the highest level. Now it’s just a matter of working to get the team chemistry right. I’m very excited about what this group can accomplish.” One thing is certain. The schedule will not allow the Lady Spartans much time to develop that all-important chemistry. They open the season against old foe McGill-Toolen on Aug. 25. The following day, Mountain Brook competes in the prestigious Juanita Boddie Tournament, followed by battles with Bob Jones and John Carroll Catholic. The Lady Spartans will compete in Class 7A’s Area Six along with Huffman, Oak Mountain and Spain Park. “Nobody in the state could play a more difficult schedule than we do,”

Journal file photos by Marvin Gentry

From page 28

Mountain Brook’s Libby Grace Gann will direct the offense from the setter position.

O’Quinn said. “Our young ladies understand that there are no easy matches or sure wins. Any night we don’t bring our best game, we can lose.” Perhaps one of the strongest reasons to be bullish about Mountain Brook’s chances in 2016 is O’Quinn herself. Over the course of several seasons, she has turned the Spartan program into one of Alabama’s best. Former Mountain Brook players say that O’Quinn knew how to balance work and fun during practice sessions.

“We worked so hard in practice – but at the same time Coach O’Quinn could make it fun,” said Mitchell, who was a two-time all-state selection for Mountain Brook. “She was especially good at having us simulate pressure situations in practice that were sure to come up in a close game. That way, we were ready for anything.” Mitchell added that O’Quinn knew how to handle her players effectively both on and off the volleyball court. “Coach always knew how to hit

the correct buttons to motivate us,” Mitchell said. “We were disciplined, but at the same time we were comfortable coming to her if we had an issue to discuss. There’s no doubt that she was a big part of the success we had at Mountain Brook while I was there.” Mountain Brook’s recent success in volleyball has spurred new interest in the game, according to Mitchell. “A few years ago I would work at summer volleyball camps and we’d have maybe 30 girls, and half of them

‘I think we will be a contender. Class 7A will be a lot of fun this season. There are lots of teams that will be in contention, and I think we’ll be one of them.’ Haven O’Quinn Lady Spartan coach

had probably never played the game in their lives,” she recalled. “Lately we’ve had over 70. I’d like to think the success we’ve had led to that increase.” It’s always difficult to win three consecutive state championships. But if O’Quinn can find the right chemistry, the Lady Spartans will offer a tough concoction for their opponents to swallow. ❖


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Thursday, August 11, 2016


Trophy Case Spain Park Staff Earns National Award Page 26

Opening Volley

lee davis

Krystle Clear Former Hoover Standout Comes Home to Coach

It’s been 15 years since Krystle Johnson picked up her high school diploma, but she still bleeds orange and black. Johnson earned all-state honors as a center while leading the Hoover Lady Bucs to the Class 6A basketball title in 2001. Although she played college ball at UCLA and the University of Alabama, the lure of her high school roots remained strong. Her career dream was answered a few weeks ago, when Johnson was named the new head coach of the Hoover girls program, replacing Tiffany Frederick. “When I decided after college that I wanted to coach, my goal was to be at the collegiate level,” Johnson said last week. “The other goal was to be the head coach at Hoover. I feel like I’ve finally come home.” Johnson’s path back to Hoover was comparatively short. After graduating from Alabama, she spent five years as junior varsity coach of the Lady Bucs and an assistant to head coach Donnie Quinn, as Hoover won two state titles. In 2012, Johnson accepted the position of head coach at Huntsville High School. The results were immediate. Johnson guided the Lady Panthers to their first-ever Final Four appearance and was named Tennessee Valley Coach of the Year. Under her leadership, Huntsville made another Final Four appearance in 2015 and compiled a 98-40 record in four years. Johnson said she loved her time in Huntsville, but when her alma mater called, she couldn’t say no. “The Huntsville community was like family to me,” Johnson said.

Mountain Brook Aims for Third Straight 7A Title

By Lee Davis


Caroline Davies (pictured) is one of three seniors expected to lead Mountain Brook on the front line, along with Emmy Kilgore and Ellie Ritter.

Journal file photo by Marvin Gentry

After winning two consecutive Class 7A state volleyball championships, the Mountain Brook Lady Spartans might be automatically favored to earn their third consecutive blue trophy. But taking the prize might not be quite that simple. Yes, Mountain Brook was imposing last season, posting a 57-6 record climaxed by a sweep of McGill-Toolen to win a second straight title. Unfortunately for the Spartans, three mainstays of the two championship teams – Sara Carr, Sara Chandler Mitchell and Payton Selman – all picked up their diplomas last spring. Nevertheless, Mountain Brook should be formidable and could put up a robust defense of its championship crown. “I think we will be a contender,” Lady Spartan coach Haven O’Quinn said. “Class 7A will be a lot of fun this season. There are lots of teams that will be in contention, and I think we’ll be one of them.” While Carr, Mitchell and Chandler were three of the greatest players in Mountain Brook history, there is plenty of talent in the pipeline for the new season. Three experienced seniors will lead Mountain Brook on the front

See JOHNSON, page 26

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