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NEED A SOLUTION FOR MISSING TEETH?

• I.V. and Oral Se • NuCalm™ All natural rela with no after e • Cosmetic Den Natural Looking • Kuhn Dental Offers Minimally Invasive The treatment gaveImplants me back my smile and confidence. Full Dental Implant Services Teeth in One • Dental Implants for missing teeth I will always treasure the doctor • • Implant-supported Bridges for multiple missing teeth One Visit Cro and staff; they gave me • Implant-supported Dentures (fixed and removable) for a full arch of missing teeth Advanced D • Mini Dental Implants (MDIs) for denture stabilization back my quality of life. CARING, COMPASSIONATE • Full-arch tooth replacement with All-on-4 New Teeth in One Day CAD/CAM Tec – Mitch • Bone GraftingSTATE-OF-THE-ART and Sinus Lifts • Dentures Facelift Dent Call us today to see • if Implants are the right Apne solutionSleep for you. Oral Applian 910-692-4450 • Mandy Kuhn Grimshaw DDS | Ritt Kuhn DMD David Kuhn DMD Call today! Financing Available TMJ/TMD 1902 N. Sandhills Blvd. | Aberdeen, NC | www.KuhnDentist.com Mandy Kuhn Grimshaw DDS Ritt Kuhn DMD Treatmen 910-692-4450

DENTISTRY


Merry

Christmas &

McDevitt town & country properties

r!

A

Ha ea ppy Y Ne w


Our Communities

Feel Different Because They Are Nationally Accredited Life Plan Communities

• Pine Knoll and Belle Meade Independent Living

• The Coventry Assisted Living

• The Health Center and Therapy Village Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation

• Home Care

We invite you to tour Pine Knoll and Belle Meade and enjoy a complimentary lunch or overnight stay! To schedule your visit call 910-246-1023 today.

www.sjp.org


Village PROPERTIES OF PINEHURST, LLC

VILLAGE OF PINEHURST RENTALS, LLC

m o r f s a m t s i r h C y r r e M . u o y f o l l a o t s u f o all


nickers K Knickers F R O M F RDO A M Y D ATY O T ON IN G I GHH TT

TIS TH T IE S T SHEEASSEO A SNO… N… L I V EL,I V E , LOV E LO , VE, S P A RSK PA LREK! L E ! HAPPY H AH P POYLHI O DLAY I D AY S !S !

L I N G E L I RN IG EE R I E S L E E P S LWE E E PAWRE A R L O U N LG OEUW N GE EAWRE A R M E N SMW E N ES AWRE A R B R A SB R A S B R E A SB T R E A F SOT R FMO S R M S

www.knickers-lingerie.com www.knickers-lingerie.com 910-725-2346 910-725-2346 Open Tuesday Open Tuesday - Friday - Friday 11-5:00 11-5:00 Saturday Saturday 11-4. 11-4. Sunday and Sunday Monday and Monday closed. closed. 165 E. New 165 Hampshire E. New Hampshire Avenue Avenue Southern Southern Pines, Pines, NC 28387 NC 28387


December ����

FEATURES 91 The Aurora

Poetry by Karen Filipski

92 The Last Christmas Tree Fiction by Bruce Shields

96 The Ornament & the Bell

By Jim Moriarty A lost son, a missing mother and how their wish of finding each other came true

100 The Joy of Christmas Past 102 Decking the Halls By Deborah Salomon A Pinehurst Christmas comes alive

109 Almanac

By Ash Alder

DEPARTMENTS

Cover Illustration by Harry Blair Photograph this page by John Koob Gessner 6

27 30 35 37 39 43 47 49 53 55 57 59 63 65 69 71 73 74 78 81 83 87 110 119 125 127 128

Simple Life By Jim Dodson PinePitch Instagram Winners Good Natured By Karen Frye The Omnivorous Reader By D. G. Martin Bookshelf Papadaddy’s Mindfield By Clyde Edgerton Drinking with Writers By Wiley Cash Hometown By Bill Fields In the Spirit By Tony Cross Wine Country By Angela Sanchez The Kitchen Garden By Jan Leitschuh Pleasures of Life By Scott Sheffield Crossroads By Joyce Reehling True South By Susan S. Kelly Out of the Blue By Deborah Salomon Mom Inc. By Renee Whitmore Food for Thought By Jane Lear Sandhills Photo Club Birdwatch By Susan Campbell Sporting Life By Tom Bryant Golftown Journal By Lee Pace Arts & Entertainment Calendar SandhillSeen PineNeedler By Mart Dickerson The Accidental Astrologer By Astrid Stellanova Southwords By Tom Allen

December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


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335 Grande Pines Vista, Grande Pines

2310 Midland Road, Pinehurst $2,500,000 MLS 192774 Pamela O’Hara 910-315-3324

$1,400,000 MLS 193355 Jennifer Nguyen & Karen Iampietro 910-585-2099

Private estate on 47-acres in Grande Pines with a 2 story all-brick home. 4 stall barn, climate controlled car barn/carriage house and a separate 5,900sf workshop. 3 bedrooms, 3/2 bathrooms.

This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to own one of the largest pieces of property in Pinehurst. 16.74-acres within minutes of the Village. 4 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms.

Chimbley House: c1922 has been completely renovated into an elegant updated home. Surrounded by a spectacular garden. Private, but minutes from downtown. 5 bedrooms, 4/1 bathrooms.

220 Merry Way, Horse Country

11 Oxton Circle, Pinewild Country Club

35 Quaker Ridge Road, Country Club of NC

Private and quiet over 17-acres horse farm with rolling pastures and whole house generator. Minutes from downtown. Ride out from your farm on endless trails. 3 bedroom, 3 bathrooms.

Gorgeous French Country Home in Pinewild Country Club. Over 6,000sf on lovely grounds. 4 bedrooms, 6/1 bathrooms.

Beautifully custom home built in 2012 in premiere gated CCNC. All the features make this well-appointed elegant home easy living at its finest! 4 bedrooms, 4/1 bathrooms.

233 Gails Road, McLendon Hills

178 Lost Trail Road, McLendon Hills

40 Cypress Point Drive, Country Club of NC

Stunning custom home on over 4-acres in McLendon Hills. Gorgeous open floorplan overlooking infinity pool. Separate in-law/ guest cottage, workshop, and garage. 5 bedrooms, 4/1 bathrooms.

Peaceful horse farm and certified wildlife habitat. Custom home with wrap around porch, main floor master suite, and basement. 4 stall barn, riding area, and private trails. 4 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms.

Private, beautiful custom-built home. 5.58-acre lot on the 8th fairway looking at the 8th green of the Cardinal course. 6 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms.

70 Laurel Road, Old Town

815 Lake Dornoch, Country Club of NC

28 Middlebury Road, Forest Creek

Own a special part of Pinehurst history: “Pine Villa.” Original Tufts Cottage built in 1896. One block from the heart of the Village of Pinehurst. 5 bedrooms, 4/1 bathrooms.

Impressive home on 5-acre lot with grounds for a master gardener and a home for an accomplished designer. 3 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms.

Forest Creek golf front home with impressive interiors and superb outdoor areas. Covered patios and decks overlooking the north course. 4 bedrooms, 4/1 bathrooms.

$2,950,000 MLS 194386 Jennifer Nguyen & Karen Iampietro 910-585-2099

$1,150,000 MLS 190791 Deb Darby 910-783-5193

$919,000 MLS 193708 Jennifer Nguyen 910-585-2099

$849,900 MLS 196039 Emily Hewson & Pamela O’Hara 910-315-3324

Pinehurst Office •

150 Crest Road, Southern Pines

$949,000 MLS 195762 Kay Beran 910-315-3322

$925,000 MLS 195931 Cathy Breeden 910-639-0433

$899,000 MLS 196830 Jennifer Nguyen 910-585-2099

$850,000 MLS 194360 Emily Hewson & Pamela O’Hara 910-315-3324

$825,000 MLS 196642 Kay Beran 910-315-3322

42 Chinquapin Road

Pinehurst, NC 28374

$799,000 MLS 190504 Kay Beran 910-315-3322

910 –295 –5504

©2019 BHH Affiliates, LLC. An independently operated subsidiary of HomeServices of America, Inc., a Berkshire Hathaway affiliate, and a franchisee of BHH Affiliates, LLC.


240 Woodland Drive, Pine Grove Village

159 National Drive, Pinehurst

7 Sedgefield Lane, Pinehurst No. 6

Beautiful custom-built all-brick home in an ideal location. Open floor plan, all ensuite bedrooms, generator, natural gas, 2 new heat pumps. 4 bedrooms, 4/2 bathrooms.

Large corner lot, brick home, gated Pinehurst National No. 9, PCC Charter membership. Single level home with 9’ ceilings, 3-car garage. 3,687sf. Must see! 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms.

Golf front property in Pinehurst No. 6! Enjoy the spectacular views of the 16th fairway and green. 4 bedrooms, each with their own bathroom, and master on the main floor. A must see!

370 Breezy Pines Lane, Carthage

3 Pine Tree Terrace, FoxFire

6 Meadowlark Lane, Pinehurst

Gorgeous home in Breezy Pines Farm, an equestrian community, on 11.63-acres in Carthage. Privacy galore. Very spacious home. 4 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms.

Stunning home, meticulously kept. High ceilings, fireplace, hardwoods, open kitchen, wide doorways. This is a must see! 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms.

Close to the Village, transferable Pinehurst membership, all-brick custom home by Bolton Builders. Large garage, all one floor. 2,700sf. 3 bedroom, 2 bathrooms.

$588,000 MLS 196372 Cathy Breeden 910-639-0433

$554,900 MLS 194103 Frank Sessoms 910-639-3099

$467,000 MLS 196273 Pamela O’Hara 910-315-3324

$489,000 MLS 197026 Chris Gavrelis 910-260-2259

$429,000 MLS 189413 Deb Darby 910-783-5193

$365,000 MLS 196070 Deb Darby 910-783-5193

100 Ridgewood, Pinehurst $300,000 MLS 196121 Jennifer Nguyen 910-585-2099

Perched above Course 3 with views of multiple holes, this golf front home has attached transferrable PCC membership. Carolina room, 2 car garage, and golf cart storage. 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms.

Ask us about our convenient in-house mortgage services

50 Lagorce Place, Country Club of NC $259,000 MLS 196663 Cathy Breeden 910-639-0433

The perfect retreat on approximately 1.4-acres. Great split floor plan with two ensuite bedrooms and walk-in closets. Ready to move in! Best value in the neighborhood. 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms.

Southern Pines Office

167 Beverly Lane

Southern Pines, NC 28387

910 – 692–2635

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices symbol are registered service marks of HomeServices of America, Inc.® Equal Housing Opportunity.


Martha Gentry’s H O M E

S E L L I N G

T E A M

Moore County’s Most Trusted Real Estate Team!

PINEHURST • $475,000

2 BLAIR PLACE Custom 3 BR / 2.5 BA brick and hardiplank home w/fairway views of 16th hole of PCC course #1. Home also offers large wraparound front porch and nice upgrades.

CAMERON • $300,000

121 CARTHAGE STREET Attractive historic 4 BR / 2.5 BA home w/tasteful and functional updates made throughout while maintaining historic details that make this home one-of-a-kind.

O LY S

NT ECE

R

SOUTHERN PINES • $445,000

14 GLEN DEVON DRIVE Very nice, well maintained 3 BR / 2.5 BA home in Talamore golf community. Home offers beautiful layout w/nice golf views front and back….a must see!

SEVEN LAKES WEST • $442,500

135 SMATHERS DRIVE Gorgeous, well maintained 3 BR / 4 BA custom home in gated community. Home offers spacious layout w/beautiful hardwood flooring throughout main level!

LD

PINEHURST • $425,000

PINEHURST • $459,000

16 TALLADALE COURT Lovely 3 BR / 4 BA custom brick home in Pinewild l ocated on beautifully landscaped two acre lot w/almost 3,000 square feet all on one level.

55 GLASGOW DRIVE Exquisite 3 BR / 3.5 BA home w/beautiful views of the 3rd hole of the Challenge course and relaxing water feature in back.

PINEHURST • $302,000

SEVEN LAKES SOUTH • $324,000

32 THUNDERBIRD CIRCLE Very nice 3 BR / 2.5 BA home w/gorgeous golf front views of holes #7, #8 and #12 of PCC. Kitchen has been updated and master bath is spectacular!

171 W. DEVONSHIRE AVENUE Lovely 3 BR / 3.5 BA property located on the 5th hole of Seven Lakes CC. Home is spacious w/updated kitchen and enjoys premium golf and water views!

SOUTHERN PINES • $399,900

7 DEACON PALMER DRIVE Delightful 5 BR / 4 BA home in popular Mid-South Club. Floorplan is spacious w/over 3,600 sq ft of living space and private backyard overlooking 12th tee.

SEVEN LAKES WEST • 327,750

PINEHURST • $384,000

SO TLY

LD

EN REC

SO TLY

LD

EN REC

PINEHURST • $368,500

3 INTERLACHON LANE Custom built 3 BR / 3 BA home in quiet location. It’s been recently updated w/fresh paint on the interior/exterior as well as new carpet and floorcovering.

1

#

121 SMATHERS DRIVE Newly constructed 3 BR / 2 BA home in beautiful community. Home is located in desirable location within walking distance to marina and offers lots of extras.

5 VICTORIA WAY Elegant 3 BR / 3.5 BA townhome in desirable Cotswold - the ultimate in carefree living! The home features beautiful hardwood floors, gourmet kitchen and nice brick patio offering lots of privacy.

IN MOORE COUNTY REAL ESTATE FOR OVER 20 YEARS!


Luxury Properties MARTHA GENTRY’S HOME SELLING TEAM

Moore County’s Most Trusted Real Estate Team!

PINEHURST • $898,000

PINEHURST • $799,000

PINEHURST • $745,000

102 BATTEN COURT Amazing 4 BR / 4 full BA 2 half BA home on Pinehurst #9 course. This home was featured in Southern Living magazine as the 1999 Idea House.

102 STRATHAVEN COURT Elegant 4 BR / 3 Full BA 2 half BA golf front home located on the signature hole of Pinehurst #9 course.

115 BLUE ROAD Gorgeous 4 BR / 4.5 BA home in the Village of Pinehurst – truly a special property. Beautiful home inside and out. Lots of living space and space for entertaining.

PINEHURST • $629,000

PINEHURST • $619,000

PINEHURST • $575,000

20 CRAIG ROAD Alluring 4 BR / 4.5 BA in beautiful Old Town location. Home has bright, open floorplan, gourmet kitchen and tons of curb appeal.

37 STRATHAVEN DRIVE Elegant 3 BR / 3 Full BA 2 half BA French Country home overlooking the 11th hole of the Holly course. Truly one of the most beautiful homes in Pinewild!

SO TLY

G

DIN

PEN

PINEHURST • $575,000

25 MAPLE ROAD Location, location, location….charming 4 BR / 3.5 BA cottage in the Village of Pinehurst w/artist studio tucked away in the garden. A must see!

SO TLY

554 BROKEN RIDGE TRAIL Attractive 4 BR / 3.5 BA home on beautiful acreage w/great layout and nice salt water pool in back. Perfect reflection of NC Southern Charm!

SO TLY

149 MORRIS DRIVE Stunning 4 BR / 4 Full BA 2 half BA lakefront home meticulously maintained. All brick custom home w/ outstanding features includes adjacent lot.

SEVEN LAKES WEST • $505,000

107 PATMAN COURT Custom built 3 BR / 3.5 BA brick home on beautiful Lake Auman located in a wide cove where you can enjoy long lake views.

LD

EN REC

SEVEN LAKES WEST • $935,000

LD

EN REC

MCLENDON HILLS • $509,000

LD

EN REC

49 GREYABBEY DRIVE Stunning 4 BR / 4.5 BA contemporary home on 7th hole of the Pinewild Magnolia course. Interior is light and open w/beautiful gourmet kitchen.

PINEHURST • $585,000

14 GLENBARR COURT Lovely 4 BR / 3.5 BA new construction on the 3rd hole of the Challenge Course of Pinewild CC. Home offers open floorplan w/nice covered porch and expansive golf views.

TLY

EN REC

D

SOL

VASS • $740,000 1000 LAKEBAY ROAD Unique, yet stunning 3 BR / 2 Full BA 2 half BA custom dream home! Home sits on just under 12 acres of flat pasture with picturesque river stream in the back.

Re/Max Prime Properties, 5 Chinquapin Rd., Pinehurst, NC 910-295-7100 • 800-214-9007

MARThAGENTRY.COM • 910-295-7100 • Re/Max Prime Properties 5 Chinquapin Rd., Pinehurst, NC


at

MUST

REDUCE INVENTORY

WWW.PINEHURSTTOYOTA.COM

OFFICIAL OPENING MID-DECEMBER!


Touch

of

ElEgancE

in

forEsT crEEk

M A G A Z I N E Volume 15, No. 12 David Woronoff, Publisher Jim Dodson, Editor

910.693.2506 • jim@pinestrawmag.com

Andie Stuart Rose, Creative Director

910.693.2467 • andie@pinestrawmag.com

Jim Moriarty, Senior Editor

910.692.7915 • jjmpinestraw@gmail.com

Alyssa Rocherolle, Graphic Designer

910.693.2508 • alyssa@pinestrawmag.com

Lauren M. Coffey, Graphic Designer

910.693.2469 • lauren@pinestrawmag.com CONTRIBUTING EDITORS

Deborah Salomon, Staff Writer Mary Novitsky, Sara King, Proofreaders CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS

John Koob Gessner, Laura Gingerich, Tim Sayer CONTRIBUTORS Tom Allen, Harry Blair, Tom Bryant, Susan Campbell, Bill Case, Wiley Cash, Tony Cross, Brianna Rolfe Cunningham, Mart Dickerson, Clyde Edgerton, Bill Fields, Laurel Holden, Jane Lear, Jan Leitschuh, Meridith Martens, D.G. Martin, Lee Pace, Romey Petite, Renee Whitmore, Joyce Reehling, Scott Sheffield, Stephen E. Smith, Astrid Stellanova, Angie Tally, Kimberly Taws, Ashley Wahl

PS ADVERTISING SALES

16 Birkdale Drive in Forest Creek Golf Club The concept of open living is redefined to an extraordinary level of quality and beauty in this custom built home nestled on a quiet cul-de-sac in prestigious Forest Creek Golf Club. Built in 2017 by GWB Construction LLC, the Duke Energy Central Region Builder of the Year, utilizing green and smart home features, the home radiates high end details and appointments. Magnificent kitchen with Wolf range, Sub Zero refrigerator, Carrara marble counter tops and spacious island with over-sized white porcelain farmhouse sink and walk-in pantry. Highlights include European white oak hardwood floors, screened porch with pull-down windows, and huge walk-in attic storage in this four bedroom, four and a half bath home. A stunning fireplace anchors the living room setting a tone for elegant living. NEW LISTING Offered at $825,000

Ginny Trigg, Advertising Director 910.693.2481 • ginny@thepilot.com Terry Hartsell, 910.693.2513 Perry Loflin, 910.693.2514 Dacia Burch, 910.693.2519 Patty Thompson, 910.693.3576 Samantha Cunningham, 910.693.2505 ADVERTISING GRAPHIC DESIGN

Mechelle Butler, Scott Yancey

PS

Steve Anderson, Finance Director 910.693.2497 Darlene Stark, Circulation Director 910.693.2488 SUBSCRIPTIONS

To view more photos, take a virtual tour or schedule a showing, go to:

910.693.2488

www.clarkpropertiesnc.com

Maureen Clark when experience matters

145 W. Pennsylvania Avenue, Southern Pines, NC 28387 www.pinestrawmag.com

Pinehurst • Southern Pines BHHS Pinehurst Realty Group • 910.315.1080

©Copyright 2019. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. PineStraw magazine is published by The Pilot LLC

©2015 BHH Affiliates, LLC. An independently operated subsidiary of HomeServices of American, Inc., a Berkshire Hathaway affiliate, and a franchisee of BHH Affiliates, LLC.

14

OWNERS

Jack Andrews, Frank Daniels Jr., Frank Daniels III, Lee Dirks, David Woronoff

December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


949 Sheldon Road • Southern Pines

Occupying a premier 10.31-acres in Horse Country, this pristine hunt box borders a private and beautiful corner of the W.M. Foundation. 2BR, 2BA, 2,625 sq. ft. Offered at $925,000

Fox Lake Farm • Southern Pines

Magnificent equestrian property on 48 acres encompassing a pristine lake. Renovated in 2006, the farm features 5782 sq ft hunt-box, 16 stall barn, indoor arena, 11 paddocks, & more. Offered at $3,750,000

Maureen Clark

910.315.1080 • www.clarkproperties.com

140 North Valley • Southern Pines

205 Merion Circle • Pinehurst

Loblolly, a Southern Pines historic treasure, located on a quiet, tree-lined street, is a lovely combination of unparalleled building elegance embraced by comfortable living features. 5BR, 5BA, 8,050 sf. Offered at $1,650,000

Inside and outside, the phenomenal attention to detail in this lovely home creates a perfect living environment. Open family room/kitchen with fireplace, 4 BR, 3.5 BA, 2003. New Listing. $399,000

60 Manigault Place • Southern Pines

451 Old Mail Road • Southern Pines

Located on a quiet cul-de-sac in Middleton Place, the home has a rare third bedroom. Recent upgrades include: Hardwood floors, new gas water heater, gas range and hood. 3 BR, 3 BA, 2722 sq ft. $345,000.

The jewel of Moore County’s horse country, Fox Hollow Farm is secluded on 10.52 acres with easy access to thousands of acres of equestrian land. 4BR, 4.5BA 5,276 sf. Offered at $2,200,000

Berkshire Hathaway HomeSercies and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices symbol are registered service marks of HomeServices of America, Inc.® Equal Housing Opportunity.Housing Opportunity.


Always a Step Ahead

There are over 600 Real Estate agents in Moore County. Amy Stonesifer is among the top 5.

Sample Home Design

Private Community Pool

Southern Pines, NC 28387

Member Clubhouse

Serving Moore County and Surrounding Areas! 910.684.8674 | 120 N ASHE ST | SOUTHERN PINES, NC 28387


www.maisonteam.com NEW LISTING

MLS 194958 106 BLUEGRASS COURT Aberdeen, NC • $292,500

MLS 194285 200 AIKEN ROAD $415,000

MLS 197321   125 RILEY LANE Cameron, NC • $289,000

MLS 195429 10 HAMPSHIRE LANE $295,000

NEW LISTING

NEW LISTING

MLS 197044 734 GOLD FINCH WAY Vass, NC • $185,000

MLS 196376 469 THIMBLEBERRY DRIVE Vass, NC • $365,000

MLS 194850   107 BLUEGRASS COURT Aberdeen, NC • $296,250

MLS 195895 771 SUN ROAD $339,000

MLS 194850 107 BLUEGRASS COURT $296,250

MLS 197094 118 LOCH LANE Cameron, NC • $279,000

MLS 191168 660 E MASSACHUSETTS AVENUE $625,000

MLS 189495 165 E NEW JERSEY AVENUE $379,000

MLS 195534 104 PREAKNESS COURT $295,000

MLS 195481 150 E NEW ENGLAND AVENUE $165,000

MLS 196375 1220 BURNING TREE ROAD Pinehurst, NC • $350,000

MLS 194920   113 BLUEGRASS COURT Aberdeen, NC • $270,500

Buy, Sell or Rent through us- we do it all! 910.684.8674 | 120 N ASHE ST | SOUTHERN PINES, NC 28387


Please visit our new location at 420 Glensford Dr. Fayetteville, NC 28314 910-487-0000 | mercedesbenzoffayetteville.com


A Touch Of Times Gone By Moore County’s Largest and Oldest Country Store

Patrick and Jo Milcendeau Owners

Santa will be here Dec 14th from 2 to 4

A fu n for u place and nique ha find rd to gifts !

our Visit l bird ica trop adise par d the n behi re! sto

Merry s ma Christ he from t in v Dunro Staff!

Dunrovin Country Store 5456 US HWY 1 • VASS, NC 28394 • 910-246-0814 OPEN DAILY • 9AM-6PM


Fill their Stockings with Fitness* Massage Holiday Packages Winter Wonderland Gift Certificate ~ $120 Two one-hour Massages (limit 2 per person)

Gift of Fitness

Give the Gift of Fitness with a Monthly Membership Gift Certificate ~ $55 (limit 3 per recipient)

Holiday Personal Training Special Buy a package and get free bonus sessions! Diamond (64 sessions) Package get 4 Free sessions ~ $1,410 Platinum (32 sessions) Package get 3 Free sessions ~ $750 Gold (16 sessions) Package get 2 Free sessions ~ $395 Silver (8 sessions) Package get 1 Free session ~ $216 All packages come with an assessment and goal setting. Above is member pricing. *Friday, Nov. 29 – Tuesday, Dec. 31

FirstHealth Fitness - Pinehurst (910) 715-1800 170 Memorial Drive Pinehurst, NC 28374 FirstHealth Fitness - Southern Pines (910) 692-6129 205 Davis Road Southern Pines, NC 28387 www.firsthealth.org/fitness

1586-101-19


Whether you prefer Steak Diane at the Carolina Dining Room, Chipotle Jumbo Shrimp and Grits at the 1895 Grille, Grilled Salmon Salad at The Tavern, Taterman Tots at The Deuce or the Carolina Burger at the Ryder Cup Lounge, you’ll find

910.235.8415 • pinehurst.com The Tavern • Ryder Cup Lounge • Carolina Dining Room • 1895 Grille • The Deuce

© 2019 Pinehurst, LLC

exactly what you’re hungry for at Pinehurst Resort.


, e c a l p e r i F r e g g i B ! s t f i G r e g Big – Call Howell’s Masonry for a custom built fireplace! – BRICKWORK

STONEWORK

FIREPLACES

OUTDOOR LIVING

910-944-0878

www.howellsmasonry.com 10327 Hwy 211 • Aberdeen, NC 28315


A West Coast Lifestyle Boutique

CoolSweats in the Village of Pinehurst 910.295.3905 Monday through Saturday 10 am - 5 pm


ART

DXV presents the Randall® Faucet Collection, Pop® Rectangle Vessel Lavatory and Fitzgerald® Freestanding Soaking Tub.

Geometric Abstraction Appreciate bold serenity in this reimagining of the Golden Era Movement. View our complete catalogue of bathroom products at dxv.com

© AS America, Inc. 2018

This DXV bathroom was designed by Alan Tanksley

CLASSIC

GOLDEN ERA

Project Details Job Number: 7020284-02 Name: LIXIL/DXV 18 DXV Print FY18-19

MODERN

CONTEMPORARY

115 Davis Road • Southern Pines, NC 28387 • 910-692-2210 Visit Color our showroomDimensions online at www.hubbardkitchenandbath.com CMYK

Live Area: 8.5” x 10.375” Trim Size: 9” x 10.875”


SIMPLE LIFE

A Walk in the Dark The nocturnal world reveals its secrets — and the beauty of an Elephant Angel

By Jim Dodson

Every morning for the past few years, a couple of hours before sunrise, while much of the world has yet to stir, regardless of weather or season, my wife and I walk a mile with our dogs through the darkness. Sometimes a little farther than that.

Neither wind nor rain, neither sleet nor snow — and certainly not dark of night — can keep us from our appointed rounds. What began as a simple way for two humans and three canines to get their feet and bloodstreams moving has become a daily ritual that seems almost second nature now, the one time during a busy week when we — the humans — have time to talk and walk or simply be together. We talk of many things or nothing at all, frequently walking in a mindful silence worthy of Benedictine monks. We carry a flashlight to shine if necessary but prefer to travel by the light of the stars and an ever-changing moon, plus whatever illumination hails from the odd lighted porch or lamppost. Fortunately our neighborhood has only a few street lights, which make night skies more vibrant and provide deep stretches of darkness where we rely on faith and trust that one of us won’t step headfirst into an open manhole or fall over someone’s curbed bag of leaves. That’s a risk I’m happy to take. We live in a world too full of clamor and noise, and save for those wee hours when maintenance crews at the nearby shopping center operate industrial-sized leaf blowers that can be heard for country miles (against city noise codes, by the way, and something that has many in the neighborhood up in arms). The predawn silence and stillness may be the best thing about a walk in the dark, a healing glimpse of a world that was. “Silence is the sleep that nourishes wisdom,” said Francis Bacon. Our two older dogs — Mulligan the aging mixed breed foundling (Queen bee, deaf in one ear) and Ajax the golden retriever dandy (pedigreed goofball) — know nothing of Bacon, except the kind they beg to eat, but do know the way by heart though the darkness, chugging bravely ahead. Gracie, the sweet young Staffordshire terrier we rescued from life on the streets, likes to pause and sniff the earth where others have passed, keeping a sharp eye out for breakfasting rabbits, still learning her way through a civilized world.

Darkness, it seems to me, gets a pretty bum rap. As kids, we are programmed against the night by popular culture and to fear the darkness and everything that potentially lurks therein — the monster in the closet, the bogeyman beneath the bed, witches who consort with the moon, robbers waiting in the bushes, black cats and burglars on the prowl. Later in life, of course, it’s the metaphorical darkness that drives the daylight narrative with news of yet another incomprehensible mass murder of innocents in broad daylight by some despondent loner enveloped by his own inner darkness. Friends — and everyone has them — who’ve made the journey through the Stygian darkness of depression live in a state of perpetual twilight, unable to sleep, untethered from a world that seems to hold scant promise of joy or hope. Their journey back to the light is one of the bravest things you can witness. Meanwhile, the Web’s dark side is reportedly shadowing all of our lives, spinning fantastic conspiracies while stealing our identities and credit card numbers. Is it a coincidence that the television ads that run in the predawn hours aggressively peddle home security systems, identity protection and male impotence cures? Probably not. These are what we fear most in our darkest hours of the night. And yet, it is that very darkness where we take refuge and rest and recharge batteries, snuggle down beneath the duvet, temporarily abandon all cares and set loose on travels through our dreams. For all its magnificent abilities to reveal the workings of living creatures, modern science still cannot fully explain why all living things — even honeybees — need sleep. But thankfully we do. And the best benefits of sleep occur, sleep experts agree, in a dark and silent place. A campfire in the daytime seems, well, rather pale and pointless. But on a dark night in the wild, surrounded by the watchful eyes of living creatures great and small, what is more comforting than a crackling fire that sends up sparks to heaven when you toss on another log? In her marvelous book Learning to Walk in the Dark, spiritual writer Barbara Brown Taylor points out that the human body requires equal amounts of darkness and light to function properly, an ancient circadian rhythm of sleeping and waking that matches the cycle of day and night, allowing natural healing properties in both man and nature to do their thing. “I have learned things in the dark that I would never have learned in the light,” Brown writes, “things that have saved my life over and over again, so that there is really only one logical conclusion. I need darkness.”

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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SIMPLE LIFE

“Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness,” concurs the poet Mary Oliver. “It took me years to understand that this, too was a gift.” Madeleine L’Engle sagely chimes in from a wrinkle somewhere in time, “Maybe you have to know the darkness before you can appreciate the light.” Which brings us happily back to lights on our daily walk made mythical by the winter darkness. Beginning in October (seemingly earlier every year), it’s fun to see the year’s latest crop of illuminated creatures of the night that appear on lawns weeks before Halloween — gigantic black cats, towering ghouls, giant spiders, fake graveyards, skeletal hands reaching up from the azaleas. It’s all in good fun, meant to mock the very thing we are meant to fear: the mysterious darkness. Our favorite by a wide margin is the Great Lighted Pumpkin that appears every year at the start of October, floating high in the limbs of an ancient white oak near the corner where we turn for home. He smiles benevolently upon us as if he gets the joke — a beacon of cheerfulness in a season of manufactured fright. Come December — the hemisphere’s darkest month — it’s the deep winter darkness that makes the lights of our daily trek through the neighborhood such a visual feast, a kinetic pleasure. As the curtain comes down on another year in the life of this struggling old planet, we hopeful types dutifully light candles and build bonfires to politely rage against the notion of going gently into that good night. As if to indicate our unwavering commitment to optimism in the face of present concerns, we string lights on trees and lampposts, erect illuminated reindeer and waving Santas, blinking constellations of shrubs meant to light the darkened way. Clearly, there is a message in this. During the years we resided on a coastal hill in Maine, surrounded by several hundred acres of a deep beech and hemlock forest, our little ones lived for the annual lighting of trees around the property, particularly an elderly American beech that stood in the side yard off the eastern porch. In order to get up into the limbs of the old tree, I needed a large step ladder

and a healthy snort of good Kentucky bourbon for courage in order to finagle the tiny lights into the highest branches. Our resident squirts maintained that the creatures who resided in the surrounding forest — a peaceable kingdom that included a family of white tail deer, a lovesick moose who occasionally wandered over the lawn, a fat lady porcupine who waddled past and a flock of wild turkey, not to mention a couple mischievous made-up story time bears named Pete and Charley — needed our lit-up beech to brighten their cold winter nights. Not everyone grasped this. The UPS guy, for example, wondered why we bothered to put up holiday lights on a forested hilltop where nobody but us could see them. Before I could reply, my wee son Jack spoke up. “The birds can see them,” he calmly explained. “And so can angels.” One year, in any case, I forgot to check whether the current bulbs were still operational and carefully put up several strings only to discover they were dead as Jacob Marley’s doorknocker. In frustration, I went out and purchased several new strings of holiday lights and tested them before haphazardly flinging them into the limbs as darkness fell and an intense downpour of sleet began. Upon flipping the switch, something remarkable happened, proof that children see things that grown-ups lose the ability to see without help. The old beech bloomed to life with glittering lights in the icy darkness and I breathed a sigh of relief. “Look, Daddy,” Jack said matter-of-factly. “An elephant angel.” By golly he was right. I can only describe what he saw — the outline of an elephant with wings, soaring heavenward — as exactly that. A few days later, even the UPS guy, delivering Christmas presents from faraway Carolina, was deeply impressed. PS Contact Editor Jim Dodson at jim@thepilot.com.

Is it early morning, or late at night? Either way, Lin is working for you!

ENERGY. EXPERIENCE. EFFORT. 28

Lin Hutaff’s PineHurst reaLty GrouP Village of Pinehurst | 910.528.6427 | linhutaff@pinehurst.net

December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


If Pinehurst has it, Lin can get it for you! Go to LinHutaff. com

405 BEULAH HILL RD • OLD TOWN Buy a piece of History! “Boxwood Cottage” 2.6 acres. No one has put more time, talent and treasure in restoring this beautiful structure as the current owners. 5BD, 5 ½ BA. Offered at $2,250,000.

190 MIDLAND RD • PINEHURST NO 2 “Blue Shutter Cottage”. Historic home on the famed No 2 Course, as comfortable after golf or riding as it is for a formal affair. Layered in French and Italian aesthetics including Venetian plastered walls and ceilings. Dream kitchen. Offered at $1,600,000.

14 GREYABBEY DR • PINEWILD STUNNING, golf front contemporary home with walls of glass from ceiling to floor. Amazing gourmet kitchen boasts Miele and Thermador appliances, plus Miele stainless Hood. Superb. 5BD, 4 1/2BA. Offered at $799,000.

91 SAKONNET TRAIL • PINEHURST NO 6 Spectacular property. Custom, all brick, with French doors and walls of glass showcasing cobalt blue, in-ground, salt water pool. Gourmet kitchen with Bertazzoni, dual fuel gas range. Fenced yard. 4BD, 4 ½ BA. Offered at $675,000.

16 APPIN COURT • PINEWILD Sensational, GOLF FRONT, Pinewild home tucked away on a quiet cul-de-sac. Stunning home with walls of windows. The handsome kitchen has large breakfast area with access to deck overlooking longleaf pines, small stream and 11th hole of the Holly Course. 5BD, 3BA. Offered at $595,000.

235 HEARTHSTONE RD • FAIRWOODS ON 7 1st hole of Pinehurst No 7 Golf Course. Updated home with hardwood flooring, new kitchen etc. Focal point of home is the family room open to handsome kitchen and fabulous open porch. 3BD, 2BA. Offered at $575,000.

5717 NC HIGHWAY 22 Country living on 2 1/2 acres with STUNNING, CUSTOM, all brick home and handsome ‘’Carriage House’’. Just bring your suitcases! Price includes well appointed, beautiful furnishings for weekend home or year-round living. 4BD, 4 ½ BA Offered at $542,000.

90 E MCCASKILL RD • OLD TOWN 1.02 ACRES in the heart of OLD TOWN Pinehurst. ‘’Cottage’’ Ranch home lovingly cared for by one owner for over 30 years. LOT extends from the corner of McCaskill Rd and Culdee to the corner of Culdee and Barrett Rd. 3BD, 3B 1/2BA. Offered at $495,000.

3 HOLLY KNOLL CT • PINEHURST Lake Pinehurst Area! Built by premier builder for personal residence with all the extras expected in builder’s own home. Gourmet kitchen, deep molding, Pella windows and heated workshop in garage. 3BD, 3 ½ BA. Dream Gourmet kitchen. Offered at $489,000.

9 FOREST LANE - PINEHURST ONE OF THE PREMIER GOLF FRONT LOTS IN PINEHURST. Exceptional property! Home sits on 2 LOTS surrounded by fairways on 3 sides. Views are magnificent! Floor to ceiling windows enhance natural light and panoramic views. Deck across back of home. 3BD, 2BA. Offered at $409,000.

70 MAPLE RD • HISTORIC “IDLEWILD COTTAGE” Historic “Idlewild Cottage!” All the charm and character expected in the heart of the Village of Pinehurst. Large LOT, great Pool with Pool house. Fenced yard. Heart pine floors in front room. 3BD, 2BA. Offered at $399,000.

26 POMEROY DR Premier Golf Front Lot overlooking the Green of the first hole of the Holly Course in desirable Pinewild Country Club. Lot is flat and well-shaped for construction on small cul de sec with long view of fairway. Offered at $109,000.

ENERGY. EXPERIENCE. EFFORT.

Lin Hutaff’s PineHurst reaLty GrouP Village of Pinehurst | 910.528.6427 | linhutaff@pinehurst.net


PinePitch Christmas on Connecticut Get in the spirit at the Weymouth Center for the Arts and Humanities’ open house beginning Thursday, Dec. 5, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at 55 E. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. It continues at the same time on Dec. 6 and runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Dec. 7. The cost is $5 at the door. Need more info? Go to weymouthcenter.org or call (910) 692-6261.

Dancer, Prancer and You The 5K Reindeer Fun Run weaves through the streets of Aberdeen on Dec. 7 from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. All proceeds go to the Boys and Girls Club of the Sandhills. Rendezvous at 100 E. Main St., Aberdeen. For more information, call (910) 693-3045 or go to www.reindeerfunrun.com.

Tree Lightings The village of Pinehurst will come alive at its tree lighting at 6:30 p.m. on Dec. 6 in Tufts Memorial Park, 1 Village Green Road West. There will be music, crafts and an appearance by Santa, who will make the commute from Aberdeen, where he stars in their tree lighting on Dec. 5, from 6:15 to 7:30 p.m. at The Depot, 100 E. Main Street. For a big man, he gets around. Pinehurst information can be found at www.vopnc.org, and for more Aberdeen details, call (910) 944-7275.

Tea Time on the Tracks Get that pinky finger in the air to support the Sandhills Woman’s Exchange on the refurbished Aberdeen, Carolina and Western railroad cars parked near the Pinehurst Resort on N.C. 5. Hot tea and food will be served by waitresses in period dress. Entertainment features Hollis Carbrey and tickets are $75. For information and tickets, call (910) 295-4677.

Ruth Pauley Lecture Series Michael Mann, the director of the Earth System Science Center at Penn State University, will present “Leaving the Madhouse: The Path to Climate Action,” at 7 p.m. on Dec. 5 at the Bradshaw Performing Arts Center, Owens Auditorium, 3395 Airport Road, Southern Pines. For more information go to www.ruthpauley.org.

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Deck the Halls The STARworks Gallery at 100 Russell Drive in Star will hold its magnificent ornament sale from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 7. There will be more than 2,500 handcrafted ornaments available. For more information, call (910) 428-9001 or visit www.starworksnc.org.

December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


The Rooster’s Wife Mr. Claus in the House The date for the Christmas parade is Dec. 7; the time is 11 a.m.; the place is downtown Southern Pines. There will be bands a-marchin’ and Santa Claus a-wavin’. If you need any more information than that, call (910) 692-7376.

Thursday, Dec. 5: Jonathan Byrd and The Pickup Cowboys. Byrd is a preacher's son, a Gulf War veteran, and an award-winning songwriter known for literary, outsider songs that have become campfire favorites. He’s joined on drums by Austin McCall with musical Renaissance man Johnny Waken on guitar, saw and mandolin. Cost: $15.

Jazz Age Join the Three Rivers Land Trust in Pinehurst on Dec. 7 from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. to experience a bygone era, touring three restored train cars of the 1900s parked near the Pinehurst Resort on N.C. 5. A jazz band, specialty drinks and food will help support historic preservation and land conservation in the Piedmont and Sandhills. Tickets are available at www.threeriverslandtrust.org/jotr.

Tour of Homes Visit three historic homes in Southern Pines, one in the Country Club of North Carolina and another in Whispering Pines, all decked out in their holiday finery, in the 42nd Annual Episcopal Day School Candlelight Tour of Homes on Dec. 8 from 1–5 p.m. For more information call (910) 692-3492 or go to www.episcopalday.org. Tickets are available at ticketmesandhills.com.

Sunday, Dec. 8: Keenan McKenzie and the Riffers. McKenzie and the Riffers are a dance band designed to perform original music and tight arrangements from the 1930s and 1940s. With three horns, the group plays a mix of clever big band reduction and swing-era combo tunes. Cost: $15. Thursday, Dec. 12: Holiday Cheer with Newberry and Verch. Growing up, musicians Joe Newberry and April Verch absorbed traditions of home and hearth — in his Missouri Ozarks and her Ottawa Valley of Canada. The holidays have always been a special time of the year for both, with the lure of family and friends, festive decorations, gifts under the tree, and always . . . music. Cost: $20.

Sunday, Dec. 15: Amanda Anne Platt and the Honeycutters. Getting in the holiday spirit with their new EP, “Christmas on a Greyhound Bus,” they’re on a limited run of one-night stands, playing some of their favorite seasonal tunes as well as some original holiday material. Don’t worry, they’ll also be doing a whole set of Honeycutters classics to round out the night. Cost: $15. Thursday, Dec. 19: Open mic with The Parsons. Unless otherwise noted, doors open at 6 p.m. and music begins at 6:46 at the Poplar Knight Spot, 114 Knight St., Aberdeen. Prices above are for members. Annual memberships are $5 and available online or at the door. For more information call (910) 944-7502 or visit www.theroosterswife.org or ticketmesandhills.com.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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Small bites. Big views. The Nutcracker Experience the Bolshoi Ballet’s magical production of this timeless classic accompanied by Tchaikovsky’s beloved score on Sunday, Dec. 15, at 1 p.m., at the Sunrise Theater, 244 N.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. For more information, call (910) 692-3611 or go to www.sunrisetheater.com.

Murphy Family Christmas A tradition like no other, the Murphy Family Christmas Concert, sponsored by Chapman’s Food and Spirits, will be held at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 21, at the Sunrise Theater, 244 N.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. For more information, call (910) 692-3611 or visit www.sunrisetheater.com.

Shaw House Holiday Celebrate the season by attending an open house of the Shaw House, the Garner House and the Sanders Cabin at the corner of Morganton Road and Broad St., in Southern Pines. For information and registration, call (910) 692-2051, email info@moorehistory.com or visit www.moorehistory.com.

P  ’ 

L     

Open to the Public 1010 Midland Road • Southern Pines, NC 28387 910.692.2114 • midpinesinn.com

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WE’D LIKE TO SAY

THANK YOU! T O O U R S P O N S O R S O F A N O T H E R E V E N I N G O F B E A U T Y, DECEMBER 12TH Join Dr. Jeff Kilpatrick, Dr. Russell Stokes, and Licensed Esthetician Hannah Parbst on Thursday, December 12th, from 6:00pm to 7:30pm. Your $20.00 registration fee includes:

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A 5 minute consultation with one of our plastic surgeons. The viewing of three LIVE demonstrations from our surgeons and esthetician. Access to gift certificates, Botox, Restylane, and skin care packages. Scheduling of a complimentary, in-office consultation when booked during the event. $40 Special VIP registration includes: All of the above, PLUS a surprise FREE gift, five additional raffle tickets, and VIP swag bag!

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Proceeds will benefit BackPack Pals of Moore County.

BackPack Pals is a nonprofit group that provides backpacks full of nutritional foods for children in Moore County Schools, who are otherwise food insecure, for the weekend. ticketmesandhills.com/events/evening-of-beauty

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019 Courtney’s Shoes • 2019 Amanda Begins • amandabegins.com • 802.578.3108

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INSTAGRAM WINNERS

Congratulations to our December Instagram winners!

Theme:

Firepits & Fireplaces #pinestrawcontest

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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MAINTENANCE-FREE RETIREMENT NO ENTRY FEE For many seniors, Quail Haven Village is a comfortable fit for retirement living. Quail Haven is a friendly community that is instantly warm and welcoming, where neighbors quickly become friends and staff know residents by name. All of the apartment homes are exceptionally livable, as floor plans are single story with no long hallways and no elevators. Delicious meals and housekeeping are included in the monthly rent, freeing you up to enjoy the many engaging social, educational and cultural activities available to you in the community and the Pinehurst area.

Call 910-295-2294 to schedule a personal tour today. Hours: Monday-Friday 9 a.m.-5 p.m. | 155 Blake Blvd. • Pinehurst


G O O D NAT U R E D

Gifts of Love

Finding the meaning of the season

W R I G H T S V I L L E

B E A C H

GOOD TIMES AT THE COAST

By K aren Frye

December is always a busy time. The year is ending and the holiday season is on! The hustle and bustle, the shopping, the wrapping, the preparation for get-togethers with family and friends can be overwhelming and disguise what this time of the year truly represents.

The theme of the season is gifts — not just tangible gifts wrapped in pretty paper — but also gifts of our hearts . . . gifts of love. This year, remind yourself it’s a spiritual time, a celebration of love for each other. It’s about understanding what is really important and meaningful to each of us. Giving gifts of love can mean more than that sweater or watch we may not need. The feeling one receives from a gift of love goes deeper and touches our heart. It brings us hope and the contagious desire to spread our love to others. These gifts don’t have to cost a thing. The commercialism in December can create an emotional meltdown, and the stress of spending (too much) money can ruin the true meaning of the season. Adopt a meaningful tradition — kind words of appreciation and gratitude to someone who has been of service to you in some way; or spending time with someone who may be alone for the holidays. Consider what would be most beneficial to those in your life. Some other ways to make this holiday more meaningful: • Find a family that may be struggling financially and buy their groceries for a week, or even a meal. • Go to a nursing home and spend time with someone who may be alone. • Adopt a rescue pet. • Treat the person in line behind you at the coffee shop. • Smile more at the people you meet on the street. Even a smile can brighten someone’s day and make a difference in their lives. Remember the saying, “Be the change you want to see in the world.” It all begins with one person, and that person is you. Give gifts of the heart, gifts of love, joy and peace. It’s the true meaning of this very special time. PS Karen Frye is the owner and founder of Nature’s Own and teaches yoga at the Bikram Yoga Studio.

HOLIDAY GIFT CARDS Who on your list wouldn’t like the gift of a trip to the beach? A getaway weekend? A kayak adventure? A moonlit dinner? A sunset sail? A surfing package? A full family vacation?

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PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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For a lifestyle inspired by your potential

7 Maples Lane | Pinehurst

Spectacular contemporary in private Pinehurst setting; conveniently located a golf cart ride away from The Village of Pinehurst. Open floor plan with lots of light, 5500 sq ft, whole-house generator, 2 master suites with 3 additional guest suites with private baths, gourmet kitchen, fitness room, office, library and screened porch! $937,250

442 Meyer Farm Drive

Beautiful custom craftsman home situated on over an acre lot. Long golf views overlooking the 13th hole of the North Course in Forest Creek Golf Club. This spacious 4 bedroom, 4.5 bath home features an open floor plan and beautiful finishes throughout. Gourmet kitchen, main level master suite and grand two story entry and living room. $795,000

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SO LD

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203 Plantation Drive | Southern Pines

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Pinehurst No 9: Main level living at its finest in this golf-front, custom built transitional with direct views of the green. 3BD/3.5BA’s; open floor plan with lots of light and twelve foot ceilings in most areas. Features include hardwoods throughout, great room with stone fireplace, incredible millwork, gourmet kitchen with designer appliances and hard marble counters, covered porch with wood ceiling and stone fireplace and an amazing master suite. $765,000.

177 W. PENNSYLVANIA AVE. | SOUTHERN PINES, NC 28387 | O. 910.725.2550 | INFO@PINESSIR.COM

Southern Lowcountry elegance defined in this beautiful home in Mid South Club. Beautifully situated high on a corner cul-de sac lot with amazing wraparound covered outdoor living spaces. Open floor plan with wood floors throughout lower level, 4 bedrooms and 2 and a half bathrooms. $550,000

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THE OMNIVOROUS READER

Fight the Good Fight and Keep the Faith The political saga of a father and son

By D.G. Martin

Anyone who wants to master North

Carolina political history must try to understand how Kerr Scott, elected North Carolina’s governor in 1948, could be both a liberal and a segregationist. Two books that can help are The Political Career of W. Kerr Scott: The Squire from Haw River, by retired University of Florida professor Julian Pleasants; and The Rise and Fall of the Branchhead Boys, by former News & Observer political reporter and columnist Rob Christensen.

Pleasants chronicles the exceptional life of Kerr Scott, who was governor from 1949 until 1953 and U.S. senator from 1954 until his death in 1958. Scott, a dairy farmer from Alamance County, won election as commissioner of agriculture in 1936. In 1948, after using that office as a launching pad, he resigned and mounted a campaign for governor. He beat the favored candidate of the conservative wing of the party in the Democratic primary, which in those days was tantamount to election. Once in office, Scott pushed programs of road paving, public school improvement and expansion of government services. Hard-working and hard-headed, plain and direct spoken, he appointed women and African-Americans to government positions. Future governors Terry Sanford and Jim Hunt were inspired by his success. Hunt said, “If not for Kerr Scott I would never have run for governor. My family viewed Scott as our political savior . . . He improved our roads, our schools, and our health care.” Scott’s commitment to common people, fair treatment for African-Americans, skepticism and antagonism toward banks, utilities and big business, and a prolabor platform earned him a liberal reputation that was praised in the national media. In 1949, he appointed Frank Porter Graham, the popular and liberal president of the University of North Carolina, to fill a vacant seat in U.S. Senate. When Graham lost to conservative Willis Smith in the next election, Scott resolved to run against Smith in 1954 to avenge Graham’s loss and reassert the power of the liberal wing of the party. When Smith died in office and Governor William Umstead appointed Alton Lennon, a conservative, to the seat, Scott ran against him in 1954 and won. In the Senate, his liberalism did not extend to racial desegregation. He joined with other Southerners in Congress to fight against civil rights legislation. He signed the infamous 1956 Southern Manifesto, which urged resistance to the

Supreme Court’s Brown v. Board of Education decision requiring the elimination of school segregation. Scott died in office in 1958, leaving open the question of whether he would have won re-election in 1960. Missing from Pleasants’ excellent book is the story of the entire Scott family and its role in North Carolina political life. Christensen takes up that task. He follows the Alamance County farm family beginning with Kerr Scott’s grandfather, Henderson, and his father, “Farmer Bob.” Both were active in statewide farmers’ organizations. Christensen’s important contribution to the Scott family saga is his account of the political career of Kerr’s son, Bob. Born in 1929, Bob grew up on Kerr’s dairy farm. Like his father, he became active in farm organizations and worked in political campaigns, including Terry Sanford’s 1960 successful race for governor. By 1964, at age 35, he was ready to mount a statewide campaign for lieutenant governor. But two senior Democrats, state Sen. John Jordan and House Speaker Clifton Blue, were already running. Christensen writes, “In some ways Scott had broken into the line.” Nevertheless, with the help of powerful county political machines, he won a squeaker victory in a primary runoff over Blue.  Bob Scott used his new office to run for the next one, giving hundreds of speeches each year, and he won the 1968 Democratic nomination over conservative Mel Broughton and African-American dentist Reginald Hawkins. The results of the 1968 presidential contest in North Carolina marked what Christensen calls “the breakup of the Democratic Party.” Richard Nixon won; George Wallace was second; and Hubert Humphrey was third. Nevertheless, in the governor’s race, Scott faced and beat Republican Jim Gardner.  Mountains of bitter controversies in the areas of race, labor, student unrest and higher education administration were to confront Bob Scott after he became governor of North Carolina in 1969. As governor, Scott followed his father’s tradition of inviting friends to “possum dinners” with the main possum course accompanied with “barbecued spareribs, black-eyed peas, collard greens, bean soup with pig tails, corn bread, and persimmon pudding.” Christensen writes, “Scott may not have been the populist of his father, but he brought a common-man approach to Raleigh.” But times had changed. College campuses were erupting. Black anger was spilling into the streets. Historian Martha Blondi wrote that 1969 marked the “high water mark of the black student movement.” Christensen writes, “During his first six months in office, Scott called out the National Guard nine times to deal with civil unrest.” In March, he sent more than 100 highway patrolmen to Chapel Hill to break a food worker strike and force the reopening of the student cafeteria, overruling the actions of UNC’s president, William Friday, and the chancellor, Carlyle

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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Sitterson. This action and similar strong measures against student-led disorders earned Scott praise by television commentator Jesse Helms and many others in the white community, “but he got different reviews from the black community.” Although he appointed the first black District and Superior Court judges, his pace of minority hiring and appointments was roundly criticized. Increased desegregation of public schools resulted in more disruption. Speaking about the 1971–72 school year, Scott said, “Many schools were plagued by unrest, tension, hostility, fear, disturbances, disruptions, hooliganisms, violence and destruction.” In response to disturbances relating to school desegregation in 1971, Scott sent highway patrolmen and National Guard troops to Wilmington. Conflict there led to arrests, trials and prison sentences for the group of protesters who became known as the Wilmington Ten. Bob Scott’s stormy relations with President Friday continued as Scott “decided to undertake the reorganization of higher education as his political swansong.” His proposal to bring all 16 four-year institutions under one 32-person board was adopted by the legislature. Scott expected the new organization would eliminate or minimize Friday’s role. But Friday became president of the reorganized 16-campus system and led it until 1986. Summing up Bob Scott’s time in office, Christensen writes that his legacy is “far murkier” than his father’s, in part because the state was “less rural, less poor, more Republican, and more torn by societal dissent, whether civil rights, Vietnam, or the counterculture.” Both Terry Sanford and Jim Hunt acknowledged their connection to Kerr Scott. But Bob Scott never bonded with either of them. The breach with Hunt became a public battle when Bob Scott challenged the incumbent Gov. Hunt in the 1980 Democratic primary. Scott was angry because Hunt had not supported his ambition to be appointed president of the community college system. Scott lost the primary to Hunt by a humiliating 70–29 percent margin. Ironically, in 1983, when the community college presidency opened up again, Bob Scott won the job and served with distinction until his retirement in 1995. Bob Scott died in 2009 and was buried at the Hawfields Presbyterian Church near the graves of his father and grandfather. Kerr Scott’s tombstone reads, “I Have Fought a Good Fight . . . I Have Kept the Faith.” Bob’s reads, “He Also Fought a Good Fight and Kept the Faith.” PS D.G. Martin hosts North Carolina Bookwatch Sunday at 11 a.m. and Tuesday at 5 p.m. on UNC-TV. The program also airs on the North Carolina Channel Tuesday at 8 p.m. To view prior programs go to http://video. unctv.org/show/nc-bookwatch/episodes/.

December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


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David Michael Wolff ’ in a multimedia piano recital celebrating the links between great works of art and music, with a glimpse behind the scenes into the lives of the creators. Black and white keys in full color.

Mon., March 2, 2020 10:00 AM Link Up: The Orchestra Moves

RE Lee Auditorium . Free admission. The audience will consist of approximately 1,100 Moore County 4th Graders, demonstrating their knowledge on music they learned throughout the school year in an educational program we provide each year in conjunction with Carnegie Hall. Call to reserve your complimentary seats.

Sat., March 14, 2020 7:30 PM - Don Quixote

Featuring the fiery virtuosity of violist/composer Christian Colberg in his “Viola Concerto Don Quixote” and Beethoven’s 7th Symphony.

Monday, March 16, 2020 The Carolina Philharmonic’s 5th Annual Charity Golf Tournament at Pinehurst #8 Sat., April 18, 2020 7:30 PM - Three Tenors and a Soprano

Three extraordinary tenors join soprano Young Mee Jun for an evening of songs that will thrill and delight.

Tuesday, April 21, 2020 10:00 AM and at 12:30 PM - Encore! Kids RE Lee Auditorium. Free admission. The audience will be filled with 1,000 K-2 Moore County elementary students interacting with a live orchestra on stage.

Sat., May 16, 2020 7:30 PM - Season Finale: Cannons and Fireworks

Maestro Wolff explores bridges between popular Orchestra bonbons (including Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture) and cutting edge technology, including a 3D-printed baton that ignites virtual fireworks

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BOOKSHELF

December Books GREAT GIFT BOOKS

Biblio-Style: How We Live at Home with Books, by Nina Freudenberger This is the book you might actually buy for yourself at Christmas. Freudenberger is an interior designer whose first coffee table book, Surf Shack, was a great success. She brings us fantastic homes of people surrounded by what they love, and this time it’s their books. The people and homes are an eclectic mix of booklovers — from writers, to a prince, to a fashion designer and everything in-between. She features bookstores, libraries and collections periodically throughout like little gifts. It’s a wonderful present for anyone who loves to read. On Flowers, by Amy Merrick This lovely coffee table book is a treasure. Beautifully designed, it’s as fun to read for its transformative ability and its flower arranging tips as it is to look at. Written with a sense of whimsy and a slightly ’50s lilt, the book is peppered with cleverly titled lists, coupled with sweet paintings of flowers and beauty shots of arrangements. It’s the perfect gift for Southerners who love flowers and nature and find themselves living in the city, or anyone who enjoys flower arranging. Half Baked Harvest Super Simple: More Than 125 Recipes for Instant, Overnight, Meal-Prepped, and Easy Comfort Foods, by Tieghan Gerard This is a great cookbook. There are loads of pictures, and easily accessible recipes that are familiar, yet, somehow slightly new. Some recipes come with three different ways to cook it (slow cooker, pressure cooker or stovetop). Inventive dinners like browned sage butter chicken potpie or spiced lamb hummus (it can exist as an appetizer, too) accompany delightful breakfasts, side dishes and dessert options. A great gift for anyone who is cooking for a family, especially someone working on integrating pressure cooking into a busy lifestyle.  Lush: A Season-by-Season Celebration of Craft Beer and Produce, by Jacquelyn Dodd A celebration of fruit, vegetables and craft beer, this latest book from the author of The Craft Beer Cookbook features 80 produce-forward recipes, all made with seasonal craft beer. Ciara hop and basil pesto, Mexican street corn beer cakes with chipotle crema, and roasted cabbage wedges with fetamustard beer vinaigrette are just three of the dazzling dishes. Recipes are measured both by cup and weight. A holiday favorite might be mushroom- and Gouda-stuffed barley wine onions. It is true that this book has no meat recipes. It is also true that you will be so captivated you might not notice. A gift for anyone who likes to be in the kitchen and is looking for new ideas, you might even include a pint or two. Close to Birds: An Intimate Look at Our Feathered Friends, by Mats and Asa Ottosson, photographs by Roine Magnusson Intimate photographs by Magnusson, an award-winning photographer and National Geographic contributor, capture the beauty and detail of each bird's form, as well as their unique character and personality. The accompany-

ing essays by the Ottossons share charming and often hidden details from birds’ lives. Discover why robins sing so early in the morning, and learn the science behind the magical iridescence of mallard feathers. A wonderful gift for your birdwatching aunt. The Envious Siblings and Other Morbid Nursery Rhymes, by Landis Blair Heralding a brilliant new cartooning talent, Envious Siblings will captivate readers who have thrilled to the lurid fantasies of Roald Dahl, Quentin Blake, Charles Addams, Shel Silverstein and Tim Burton. Blair interweaves absurdist horror and humor into brief, rhyming vignettes at once transgressive and hilarious. In Blair’s surreal universe, a lost child watches as bewhiskered monsters gobble up her fellow train passengers; a band of kids merrily plays a gut-churning game with playground toys; and two sisters, grinning madly, tear each other apart. These charmingly perverse creations take ordinary settings — a living room, a subway car, a playground — and spin them in a nightmarish direction. For the brother or sister you never buy a present for. 50 Things that Aren't My Fault: Essays from the Grown-up Years, by Cathy Guisewite From the creator of the iconic “Cathy” comic strip comes her first collection of funny, wise, poignant, and incredibly honest essays about being a woman in what she lovingly calls “the panini generation.” Guisewite found her way into the hearts of readers more than 40 years ago, and has been there ever since. Her hilarious and deeply relatable look at the challenges of womanhood in a changing world became a cultural touchstone for women everywhere. Now Guisewite returns with her signature wit and warmth in this debut essay collection about another time of big transition, when everything starts changing and disappearing without permission — aging parents, aging children, aging self stuck in the middle. For the woman who read Cathy aloud every morning from the paper or has cut at least one of her comics out.  Why Don’t You Write My Eulogy Now So I Can Correct It, by Patricia Marx Marx, a New Yorker writer, has never been able to get her mother’s one-line witticisms out of her brain, so she’s collected them in a book, accompanied by full color illustrations by New Yorker staff cartoonist Roz Chast. These snappy maternal cautions include: If you feel guilty about throwing away leftovers, put them in the back of your refrigerator for five days and then throw them out; if you run out of food at your dinner party, the world will end; when traveling, call the hotel from the airport to say there aren’t enough towels in your room and, by the way, you’d like a room with a better view. Why Don’t You Write My Eulogy Now is a perfect gift for Mom!  Surf Like a Girl, by Carolina Amell This coffee table book is a collection of photographs and interviews with 30 girl surfers from all over the world. Perfect for surfing enthusiasts, this unique compilation of stunning pictures and hard-won wisdom proves that the thrill of catching a wave, riding it, and kicking out belongs to everyone.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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CHILDREN’S BOOKS

Ho Ho Homework, by Mylisa Larsen Everyone wonders just what Santa does the 364 days a year he isn’t in the spotlight, and Jack wonders if he just might have found out when the substitute teacher eats reindeer cookies, knits stockings and teaches the class how to make snowflakes. A fun new look at Old Saint Nick, Ho Ho Homework is sure to be a hit this holiday season. (Ages 3-6.) If I Could Give You Christmas, by Lynn Plourde Pops of red on green, the taste of the very first snowflake, choruses of chirping carolers . . . the gifts of Christmas that mean the very most are the things that just can't be wrapped up in a box. This fun read-together title features delightful illustrations of animals found in the author's home state of Maine and is a wonderful celebration of the natural world at Christmastime. (Ages 3-6.) Bear is Awake: An Alphabet Story, by Hannah Harrison Absolutely adorable, this unique alphabet book tells a beautiful story of friendship, kindness and the value of research with a text simple enough for the youngest reader yet rich enough for a family read-together. An absolute must-have for holiday giving. (Ages 3-6.) Saving Fable, by Scott Reintgen Indira has been a characterin-waiting all her life when she’s finally chosen to attend the great Protagonist Preparatory in Fable, a school known for producing heroes. Or at least that is the way it is suppose to go. But after a failed audition, Indira discovers an evil protagonist might be to blame. Fable is under siege and everything she believes in is under threat. Can a side character save the day? Readers of The Land of Stories and the Inkheart Trilogy will find themselves drawn in to this exciting new series. (Ages 9-13.) Legacy, by Shannon Messenger It has been a long time since a series has come along with such a rapidly growing dedicated fan base as the Keepers of Lost Cities series. Messenger's unique blend of fun and fantasy have young readers literally jumping up and down and hugging each new book. Readers will be waiting at the door the day Legacy arrives. (Ages 10-14.) PS Compiled by Kimberly Daniels Taws and Angie Tally

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December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


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PA PA D A D D Y ’ S M I N D F I E L D

The Chainsaw Saga By Clyde Edgerton

I am groggy (after a nap) when,

ILLUSTRATION BY HARRY BLAIR

chainsaw in hand, I head for the small, dead tree in the yard adjoining our yard. My neighbor has asked me to cut it down — and I’m always looking for an excuse to use our trusty chainsaw. My youngest son, age 14, is with me. This is a good parent-child bonding opportunity. Had my daughter been around — same.

One thing I can teach my children is that old Boy Scout motto: Be Prepared. Gas and chain oil are nearby, as well as a spare chain. “See, I’m prepared,” I say to my son. As we walk up to the tree, I set the toggle switch to “choke,” pull the crank cord, reset the toggle switch to normal, pull the cord again. “Wang-wang.” It’s running. Sweet. My son points to the chainsaw. Covering the chainsaw bar and chain is a lightweight orange plastic sleeve — a safety cover. I’ve forgotten to remove it. I haven’t even seen it. The sleeve is there for a reason: The bare chain, with the engine off, is sharp enough cut you. You are, of course, supposed to take that plastic cover off before cranking the engine, but being groggy from my nap, I’d been . . . well, groggy from my nap. I’d forgotten. When I grab the sleeve to remove it, I do not realize that the engine is idling at a good clip and thus the chain is rotating rapidly. In less than a second, I pinch the plastic just enough for the rotating chain to 1) engage the sleeve; 2) cut through it and into my middle finger; and 3) shoot the plastic sleeve off the chain. It lands about 20 feet away. I look at my finger, look away, and manage to quickly cut off the chainsaw and place it on the ground. I look at my finger again. The cut, just above that first joint, is deep, and jagged, and I see something white. The skin is kind of like a large flap, if you know what I mean. I am not prepared for this. But while in pain — during this emergency — I’ll be a role model for my son. Isn’t there another part of the Boy Scout motto somewhere that says Be Brave or Be Calm or something like that? My son walks over and I show him. Blood is flowing. Normally, I would be able to deliver a lecture: “Be prepared: thick gloves, removal of chain sleeve.” But now that’s out the window, I’ll Be Brave and Calm. I’ll be a role model. My wife is not at home, so my oldest son, 16, with a driver’s permit, will have to take me to Urgent Care or the Emergency Room. He calls Urgent Care. They are open. We will go there — and avoid a long wait, perhaps. I’m in the car and my oldest son is driving. The youngest decided to sit out this next part. I’m holding my right hand up, my left providing towel pressure on that middle finger to stanch the bleeding.

“What happened?” he says. I tell him. He says, “Aren’t you supposed to . . . ” “Yes,” I say. We are at an intersection. “Which way?” he asks. I tell him. We are at another intersection. “Which way?” he asks. I tell him. This happens a few times. We finally park and walk into the large Urgent Care waiting room. Ah! It’s empty! What luck. We walk over to the little window. The receptionist smiles, then sees blood. “Oh, my goodness,” she says. “Can I get your insurance card and an ID?” With my good hand I reach for my billfold. Back left pocket. The pocket is empty. “Forgot my billfold,” I say. I’m sure my smile doesn’t mask the deep pain in my eyes. “Can I go get it after my finger is sewed up?” I ask. “My son has a permit only, and I’d have to ride back with him home to get my billfold. And then back here.” “I’m sorry sir. We can’t treat you if we don’t have an ID and insurance information.” We are at an intersection. “Which way?” he asks. I tell him. “How could you forget your wallet?” he asks. I don’t answer. Then I say, “It’s a billfold.” “Not these days, Dad.” We are at an intersection. “Which way?” he asks. “Straight ahead. Then right at the stop light.” “I can’t believe you forgot your wallet,” he says. Not only will I stay calm and brave, I will be humble. I retrieve the billfold. When we get back to Urgent Care, six people sit in the waiting area — honest — with two standing at the window. About a half-hour later, I’m in a room waiting for the doctor. My son is with me. I want him to see my calmness. The doctor comes and explains that getting stitches means you must lie down on the patient table, so that you can’t watch and faint. So OK. To deaden my finger before the stitches go in, the doctor will give me a couple of shots. It’s a very long needle. The very long needle will be inserted all the way into the joint on one side of my middle knuckle. I tell myself to stay calm. The needle goes in. I scream. Then, “What the hell,” I say. That kind of pain has to be rare. The needle is then inserted into the joint on the other side of my middle knuckle. I scream again. In about 10 minutes six stitches go in. No pain. As I prepare to return a couple of weeks later for stitches removal, I don’t ask my sons or daughter to go with me to the doctor for any role model stuff. They’ve learned enough from Papadaddy. Be prepared. Be brave. Be calm. PS Clyde Edgerton is the author of 10 novels, a memoir and most recently, Papadaddy’s Book for New Fathers. He is the Thomas S. Kenan III Distinguished Professor of Creative Writing at UNCW.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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DRINKING WITH WRITERS

The Long Road to Overnight Success

From poet to publisher, Emily Smith makes her mark with Lookout Books

By Wiley Cash • Photographs by Mallory Cash

I first met Emily Smith in September 2010

at the annual conference of the Southern Independent Booksellers’ Alliance in Charleston, South Carolina. She was there with a Spartanburg publisher called Hub City Books, which was releasing a poetry collection by Ron Rash. Emily had designed the collection’s cover. A year later, I saw Emily again, but this time I saw her photograph online: She was attending an awards dinner in New York City, where a book she had published was a finalist for the National Book Award in fiction. A lot had happened in the intervening year.

The book Emily had published was Binocular Vision: New and Selected Stories, by Edith Pearlman, a short story writer in her 70s who had long been a favorite of the literati, while never breaking through to a larger, critical audience. Pearlman’s book was the first to be released by Lookout Books, a publishing imprint housed in the Publishing Laboratory inside the University of North Carolina Wilmington’s creative writing department. Emily, along with editor emeritus Ben George, published Pearlman’s book as Lookout’s first release. The book would go on to be nominated for a number of prizes, and it would later win the National Book Critics Circle Award. It was quite the debut for a small press. Publishers Weekly called it a “knockout start,” and Ron Charles of The Washington Post praised Lookout’s release as “one of the most auspicious publishing launches in history.” There are centuries-old publishing houses in New York City that would kill for a single season’s title to receive the acclaim that Binocular Vision received, but there are simply too many bottles and not enough lightning. Or perhaps there is only one Emily Smith, and her journey from advertising executive to publisher of acclaimed books is perhaps as rare as the aforementioned glass-encased lightning. In early November, Emily took a break from promoting the most recent

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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DRINKING WITH WRITERS

Lookout title, This Is My Body: A Memoir of Religious and Romantic Obsession, by Cameron Dezen Hammon, to sit down with me over coffee at Social Coffee and Supply Co. on Wrightsville Avenue in Wilmington. It was a cool fall morning, and Emily and I found seats by the bright windows just inside the front door. Our conversation turned toward the first time we met in Charleston back in the fall of 2010. “I’d gotten to know the folks at Hub City because I was their inaugural writerin-residence,” she says. “I went there as a poet, but part of the residency had me working 20 hours per week for the press.” “What were you doing before that?” I ask. “I’d been a graduate student at UNC Wilmington,” she says, “and I’d worked in the Publishing Laboratory here, which I now run.” But her experience in design and marketing, as well as her ability to network and build relationships, predates her time as a graduate student in Wilmington and writer-in-residence in Spartanburg. After finishing her undergraduate degree at Davidson, Emily spent several years in advertising at J. Walter Thompson in Atlanta. “We worked with big clients,” she says. “Ford Motor Company, 20th Century Fox, Domino’s Pizza. But I burned out. I knew it wasn’t what I wanted to do.” She left Atlanta and returned to Davidson, where she worked in the Advancement office, forging relationships with alumni and the community, and raising money for the university. But something was steering her toward writing, and she enrolled as a poetry student in the MFA program at UNC Wilmington. After finishing her degree and serving as the writer-in-residence at Hub City in Spartanburg, she returned to Wilmington as the interim director of the Publishing Laboratory in 2007. In her role as interim director, Emily found a distributor to ensure that the Publishing Lab’s titles were sold beyond the campus and outside of Wilmington. When a national search began for the permanent director, Emily decided to

apply. “I thought, it would be silly not to try for this after doing this job for a year,” she says. She got the job and forged a dynamic partnership with Ben George, who at the time served as editor of Ecotone, the university’s national literary magazine. The two joined forces to found Lookout Books, which they envisioned as a literary imprint dedicated to publishing women, debut writers, and overlooked work by established authors. “Ben came to UNCW with a reputation as a meticulous, thoughtful editor,” Emily says. “And I knew the other side of the business. I had an advertising and marketing background. I knew the design part from working at Hub City. I knew how to work as a small press and handle distribution.” After the success of Edith Pearlman’s Binocular Vision, Lookout Books quickly garnered national attention, and the press has consistently delivered critically acclaimed and award-winning books by both established and debut authors. I ask Emily about the press’s current release, This Is My Body, by Cameron Dezen Hammon. “It’s the story of someone who grew up culturally Jewish and then converted to evangelical Christianity post-9/11,” she says. “9/11 was a time in which everyone and everything felt spiritual, and Cameron was caught up in it. She converted and moved with her musician boyfriend to Houston, where they performed music at an evangelical church.” The longer she stayed in the church the more she found herself caught up in a misogynistic culture that limited her to a gender role that defined both her faith and spiritual talents. “It’s a story of seeking something and discovering something else,” Emily says. I cannot help but think about Emily doing the same, setting out on a search that took her from advertising executive in Atlanta to graduate student in Wilmington to writer-in-residence in Spartanburg and back to Wilmington, where she would publish titles that would make Lookout Books an overnight literary sensation. PS Wiley Cash lives in Wilmington with his wife and their two daughters. His latest novel, The Last Ballad, is available wherever books are sold.

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PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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HOMETOWN

Treasures Under the Tree The beginning of a beautiful friendship

By Bill Fields

There was an

PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF BILL FIELDS

episode of The Waltons titled “The Best Christmas” in which mother Olivia is determined to have the merriest of holidays even without sipping a drop of the Baldwin sisters’ white lightning. She wanted her large brood all together for perhaps the last time, but her plans went awry because of a snowstorm, downed tree, car-in-a-pond and other misfortunes.

That show aired in 1976, but my best Christmas — still Santa-believing division — occurred seven years earlier. As the turbulent 1960s came to a close, for me, a sports-loving 10-year-old, a door opened to what became my favorite sport and, to a larger degree, my life. Up to that point I had batted around golf balls with a Kroydon putter and a Wilson 5-iron I talked my parents into buying on separate visits to the Sky City High Point. Those implements, though, didn’t make me a golfer like the ones I saw playing around town and on television or read about in the paper. In my mind, I needed a set of clubs for that to be so. For my parents, those were tiring months leading up to Christmas 1969, because I brought up my desire for a set of golf clubs many times. A Mom and Dad with more Scrooge in them might have denied me, but they weren’t built that way. Presents from Santa Claus weren’t wrapped in the Fields household, so when I came into the living room on Christmas morning and glimpsed something long and red on the floor with shiny things sticking out the top, I squealed with joy. It was a Spalding “Tournament” starter set including a rectangular vinyl bag. The driver and 3-wood were made of “Persimmonite,” the Naugahyde of wooden clubs, and guarded by black covers. The irons were Nos. 3, 5, 7 and 9. There was a blade putter, which upon use and research I would discover was a cross between a club you’d find on a miniature-golf counter and Spalding’s venerable “Cash-In” model. The clubs had Palmer’s signature on them — Johnny, not Arnold. I didn’t know who Johnny Palmer was, but his handwriting was neat, and since his

name adorned a set that sold for about half of my dad’s weekly pay, he must be somebody special. The grips were tacky rubber and the whole kit oozed opportunity. I removed each club out of the bag, took a grip — all fingers on the handle, having not discovered the overlapping style — and waggled above the carpet. Mom had a wide cautionary streak, but on this happy occasion I don’t think she warned me once about breaking a vase or marring the ceiling. Frank Beard was the leading money winner on tour that year, but I don’t think his season was better than mine, thanks to the acquisition of my Spaldings. Later on, I learned that John Cornelius Palmer Jr. was a fellow North Carolinian, born in 1918 in tiny Eldorado, the same birthplace as my grandfather Henderson. Johnny grew up in Badin and was one of the finest golfers to come out of the Old North State, winning seven times on the PGA Tour between 1946 and 1954. Twenty years before I found his name under our tree, Palmer finished second in the PGA Championship, tied for fourth at the Masters, and also was in the top-10 at the U.S. Open. I used the Johnny Palmers for a couple of years, as my love for the game deepened, until graduating to a full set of used MacGregors purchased from Frank, a retiree I played with at Knollwood Fairways. The starter set was passed along to my father and subsequently to my brother-in-law Bob, an infrequent golfer. The Spalding driver has been in my possession throughout adulthood. Only recently has the gang been back together, sans 3-wood, my sister digging the four irons out of a basement where her late husband had stored them, and shipping them from Oklahoma. I reclaimed the putter and bag when we cleaned out Mom’s house. I waggle them occasionally, the grips having slickened and hardened over time. The bag also holds my MacGregor woods, clubheads made of the real thing. This fall I bought my first fresh sticks in about a decade. I was reminded there is nothing like a glossy new golf club, empty of errors and full of hope. But there is nothing like an old one either, especially when the nicks and scuffs are yours on a starter set that fulfilled its mission. PS Southern Pines native Bill Fields, who writes about golf and other things, moved north in 1986 but hasn’t lost his accent.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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IN THE SPIRIT

That’s What She Said Small but enjoyable gifts for the holiday season

By Tony Cross

I’m a huge procrastinator this time of the

year. Don’t get me wrong, I do pretty well in the giftgiving department. I try to be thoughtful, and probably spend a little beyond my means. But my gifts are dope. At least that’s what my ego says. My family and friends — you’ll have to ask them. Those who are at the bottom of the totem pole on my list of recipients (they actually appear in the “Should I?” column) are the ones that usually end up getting shafted.

PHOTOGRAPH BY TONY CROSS

Honest to goodness, it’s not because I shrug my shoulders and say, “Oh, well . . . ” but because I’ve always felt kind of silly giving gifts that have zero significance — you know, the stuff you grab in the aisle at any department/grocery store while you’re waiting in line to cash out. So, without further ado, here are a few ideas that I, personally, will be putting into practice this Christmas season, written down so I won’t forget what to buy. Yes, I am that lazy.

InStill Distilling Co. White Rum I first met Leigh and Eric over the summer when we collaborated at an event in Pinehurst. I was pouring draft mojitos, and they donated their rum. Let’s just say that the keg blew fast, and people were upset that I didn’t bring more. Clayton, North Carolina’s first distillery (legal distillery, that is), is showcasing its rum. There’s a general misconception about rum — most folks think of Captain Morgan or Malibu when the spirit is mentioned. Nonsense. Local, and veteran owned, this white rum is fantastic for daiquiris and my carbonated mojitos. Trust me, I threw back five — I mean, ahem, two — daiquiris made with their rum while blasting the new Tool album back in August. Why it’s personable: It’s a veteran owned company. OK, I already covered that. But did you know that Eric, who joined the police force after serving in the Army, was fired after seven years by his police chief after she found out that he owned a distillery? Google it. Here’s a daiquiri recipe that you’re going to jot down on a little gift tag and tie around the bottle.

Daiquiri

2 ounces InStill rum 3/4 ounce fresh lime juice Slightly less than 1/2 ounce rich cane sugar syrup Smidgen of salt Combine all ingredients into shaker, add ice, and shake hard for 10 seconds. Strain into a chilled cocktail coupe. No garnish. Sutler’s Spirit Co. Gin I’ve written a few times in the past about my man Scot Sanborn and his incredibly versatile gin. It’s so damn good that I’m telling you about it again. I do a lot of events and meet new people on a weekly basis. I get asked a lot about my opinion on certain spirits, and I’m kind of surprised that I’m still turning folks on to Sutler’s. It’s not juniper-forward like most gins that you probably drank out of your parents’ liquor cabinet; it’s got a lot going on, with coriander, orange and lemon peel, and yes, a little bit of juniper. That means that even if the friend or family member that you have in mind isn’t too keen on gin, this is the bottle that can change their mind. Why it’s personable: It’s Winston-Salem’s first legal distillery, and Sutler’s probably has the sexiest packaging in the game. I guarantee that a majority of people wouldn’t give a flip even if they hated gin because the bottle looks that good. Reverie Cocktails Bottle/Growler Delivery Did you really think that I was going to skip over my baby girl? Actually, Reverie is my little brother’s baby girl. If you’re as lazy as I am, you might enjoy our pre-bottled Old Fashioneds or Sazeracs. Just pour over ice and enjoy. No, you don’t have to stir it with ice; we’ve already factored that in. Just pour and enjoy. Or pretend that you made it and wow your family and friends. If you’d like something more bubbly and refreshing, then definitely check out our carbonated growlers. Drink options change weekly, but the quality remains the same (or so we’d like to think). We deliver and bring food, too. We kind of have to — it’s the law. Pre-bottled cocktails yield nine drinks, and our growlers can pour up to 10. Why it’s personable: Because I just told you that Reverie is my niece, and we deliver to your door. C’mon. PS Tony Cross is a bartender (well, ex-bartender) who runs cocktail catering company Reverie Cocktails in Southern Pines.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


WINE COUNTRY

Lambrusco Redux Drink, eat and be merry

By Angela Sanchez

The wine Lambrusco might send

PHOTOGRAPH BY JOHN KOOB GESSNER

shivers of dislike down the spine, recalling memories of the super-sweet, cheap styles produced in the 1970s and ’80s. Times have changed. These days, Lambrusco producers are making wines that are worthy of sommelier recommendations the country over. Several styles and affordable price ranges make this dark red and slightly effervescent wine the perfect choice for any holiday feast.

In the ’70s and ’80s, Lambrusco was one of the largest U.S. imports of wine in general, and Italian wine in particular. Super-sweet and cheap, it appealed to the American palate at the time — think Cherry Coke and Cheerwine, except with alcohol — and it was widely received as part of the country’s growing interest in wine. I remember my dad drinking it out of a magnum, 1.5 liters, and loving it as much as his Diet Coke. Right wine at the right time. Today our taste is evolving toward drier wines and, lucky for lambrusco, so is its production. Lambrusco is both the name of the Italian wine and the grapes that go into it. There are 60 different varieties of the grape, but six are key to today’s production style: grasparossa, maestri, marani, montericco, salamino and sorbara. All of the varietals are high-yielding and vigorous, which was good for production in the ’80s, but today’s vintners have begun to control yields to produce higher quality grapes making higher quality wines. They are all slightly different in character but share the same characteristics of bright acidity and rich, berry fruit. There are three distinct styles to help you decide what to buy to match your taste or your feast. Alcohol content for lambrusco ranges from around 8 percent

to about 11.5 percent. The 8 percent will be on the sweeter side, while 11.5 will be drier. On the label, look for the word “secco” for a dry wine, “dolce” for a sweet wine and “amabile” for semi-dry. The majority of these wines will have a beautiful dark, ruby red color and a slight effervescence, but lower than a traditional sparkling wine like Champagne or prosecco. Lambrusco is perfect for the holidays for several reasons. First, it’s versatile. With styles ranging from dry to sweet it can be used as an appetizer, throughout the meal, and at the end. The wine is produced in the Emilia Romagna region of Italy, known for its amazing cheese, Parmigiano Reggiano, charcuterie, Prosciutto di Parma, and balsamic vinegar from Modena. The rule I go by for perfect pairings is: If it grows together it goes together. For an easy, impressive holiday appetizer, start off with a beautiful cheese and charcuterie platter with cheese and olives, drizzled with balsamic vinegar. You can serve either a dry, semi-dry or sweet lambrusco with the appetizer. Add a hearty salami with fennel to the tray to balance out the flavors. Second, lambrusco goes with turkey, spiral ham or game dishes. Dry or sweeter styles will work. Juicy — key word — juicy turkey and yummy glazed ham will sing with lambruscco. Try a Cheerwine or cherry cola glaze on the ham paired with a drier style of the wine and you’ll have your guests in awe. For dessert, a sweeter style of lambrusco with a chocolate Black Forest cake is my go-to this season. Lastly we need a fun, festive wine this season. Lambrusco is a dark, rich red color, cherry and raspberry fruit driven, with a nice hint of bubbles. Sounds super festive to me. Try Medici Dolce for the taste of cherries jubilee in a glass, and Medici Solo for the greatest salami and parmigiana pairing any of your foodie friends have had lately. Whatever you choose, drink, eat and be merry. PS Angela Sanchez owns Southern Whey, a cheese-centric specialty food store in Southern Pines, with her husband, Chris Abbey. She was in the wine industry for 20 years and lucky enough to travel the world drinking wine and eating cheese.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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THE KITCHEN GARDEN

Brussels Sprouts A superstar in the vegetable world

By Jan Leitschuh

They are a season-

al Christmas holiday staple, Brussels sprouts.

You’ll find them in markets now, fresh or frozen. And despite the fact the marble-sized veggie is “trending,” you either love ’em, or you hate ’em. If you love ’em, ’nuff said. We shall rhapsodize later. If you dislike them, there may be a good reason — but all is not lost. You may have gotten old, over-large or overcooked sprouts. It might simply be a matter of positive exposure. This mini-cabbages-on-a-stalk vegetable was first mentioned in the 16th century. Seems they are native to — surprise! — chilly Belgium, especially the region near the country’s capital, Brussels. World War I spread their use across Europe. Now Brussels sprouts are cultivated in Europe and the United States, where almost all commercial Brussels sprouts are grown in California. According to a recent NPR report, their production has quadrupled in the last decade, and the 2,500 acres devoted to the sprouts in the past has expanded to five times that.  Were Brussels sprouts forced upon you as a child? Overcooked, the sprouts can have a stronger smell, which could lead to aversion. And apparently, as babies, the only tastes we humans favor are mother’s milk and sweet things. Our tastes only evolve over time and exposure, say scientists. And, by adulthood, many of us just haven’t cultivated a taste for bitter foods, according to nutrition experts, who bemoan that fact — because bitter foods, like Brussels sprouts, stimulate digestion and are some of the healthiest eats on the planet. (Many bitter foods may also be poisonous and bad for us, so perhaps this innate caution has been a good thing over the course of human history.) Newer varieties, says NPR, have less bitterness than in prior decades.  Brussels sprouts belong to the same family as such uber-healthy, cancer-fighting veggies as broccoli, radishes, kale, bok choy, cabbage, arugula and cauliflower — all slightly bitter veggies due to their health-containing compounds.  Health experts recommend enjoying at least 3/4 of a cup of some kind, or combo, of cruciferous veggies daily, or five cups a week. Would knowing that Brussels sprouts have an extremely high nutritional value — indeed, they are an absolute superstar among cruciferous family superstars — change the willingness to try them again? After all, say geneticists, food is information. Food, they say, switches our genes on and off, for good or ill. And crucifers are big switchers toward the “good” side of the health scale.

This famous food family contains glucosinolates, important phytonutrients that have a variety of cancerprotective substances. All cruciferous vegetables contain glucosinolates and have great health benefits for this reason. Recent research has brought Brussels sprouts forward into the health spotlight. For total glucosinolate content, Brussels sprouts are now known to top the list of commonly eaten cruciferous vegetables. Their total glucosinolate content is greater than the amount found in mustard greens, turnip greens, cabbage, kale, cauliflower, or broccoli. A cup of Brussels sprouts offers over 243 percent of the day’s vitamin K requirements, and 129 percent of vitamin C, plus almost a quarter of our folate. Nearly 100 studies in PubMed (the health research database at the National Library of Medicine in Washington, D.C.) focus on Brussels sprouts. Over half of those studies involve the health benefits of this cruciferous vegetable in relationship to cancer. And besides helping our bodies detox unhelpful substances, Brussels sprouts offer powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. Thus, they also help protect our hearts and blood vessels. Food as medicine — the “hold your nose and eat it anyway” argument. Weak, right? Now, rhapsody. Those that love ’em, anticipate the “fresh” season with pleasure. These tiny cabbages-on-a-stalk are mighty cute, besides being good for you. How you prepare them can make or break your dish, so go for delicious.  The first tip is to use sprouts of similar size for even cooking. Smaller sprouts tend to be sweeter. Then, don’t overcook them. Overcooked sprouts will release that strong sulfur smell some find unpleasant. Their color should remain an intense green; olive-drab sprouts have been overcooked. Roasting on a sheet pan is simple and can bring out the sweetness of sprouts. Rinse the sprouts, and if you want, carve an "X" on the base to help cook faster and more evenly — or cut each sprout into halves or quarters. To roast, toss with olive oil and salt, spread out in a single layer and then pop in a 450-degree oven. How long to roast for? You should be able to pierce them with a fork, so no more than 20 to 25 minutes at this temp. The roasting helps caramelize the exterior, adding sweetness, while the insides remain tender. Dress with you favorite concoction: balsamic vinegar, a honey-mustard dressing, a chililime or lemon-herb sauce. You can also pan-sear Brussels sprouts in oil or butter on the stovetop. This method gives an even and crisp outer coating if the halved sprouts are cooked cut-side down until browned.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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THE KITCHEN GARDEN

Happy Holidays from the Nikki Bowman team!

Steam them for 5 to 7 minutes, and they can help lower cholesterol by binding together with bile acids in your gut. But don’t overcook, and dress with something tasty and perhaps slightly sweet to overcome the bitter factor, since you won’t be caramelizing with a steaming process. If you want to freeze fresh Brussels sprouts, steam them first for between 3 to 5 minutes. They will keep in the freezer for up to one year. Add in various favorites to make a creative dish of your choosing. One friend adds olives and artichoke hearts, dresses the concoction and sprinkles with sesame seeds. Another friend uses Brussels sprouts as the base of her signature dish. She halves and blanches the sprouts first for about 6 minutes, for best texture. A natural cook, she then dries the blanched sprouts and sautés them and some onion in some bacon drippings, adding some garlic, red pepper flakes and cayenne for savory heat near the end. Then she tosses in some golden raisins, pistachios, crumbled bacon and thinly sliced apple at the end. To dress, she stirs in a little honey, Dijon mustard and shredded Parmesan cheese into the pan.  “It’s even good cold,” she promises. She thinks dried cranberries might be a nice substitute for the golden raisins, and notes both the fruit and the honey counter any bitterness. What about the kitchen garden? I have failed twice at growing Brussels sprouts here. The heat, bugs and long growing season did the plants in. They require about four long months to form the marble- to golf ball-sized sprouts, and meanwhile, the aphids and other bugs have a field day. Heat is not their friend. So I am happy to buy them grown in cooler, more sprout-friendly regions.  And how fortuitous that these little cabbage “Christmas trees” are so readily available fresh this time of year. Or, frozen, if you prefer the convenience. Here is the simplest possible recipe — if sprouts are new in your kitchen, start here, and build up your signature dish according to your tastes.

Simple Roasted Brussels Sprouts

JESSICA ROWAN

Broker 910-585-5438

NIKKI BOWMAN

Broker/Owner 910-528-4902

760 B NW Broad Street Southern Pines, NC www.realtyworldofmoore.com

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1 1/2 pounds Brussels sprouts 3 tablespoons good olive oil  3/4 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut off the brown ends of the Brussels sprouts and pull off any yellow outer leaves. Mix them in a bowl with the olive oil, salt and pepper. Spread them on a sheet pan and roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until crisp on the outside and tender on the inside. Shake the pan from time to time to brown the sprouts evenly. Sprinkle with more salt. PS Jan Leitschuh is a local gardener, avid eater of fresh produce and co-founder of the Sandhills Farm to Table cooperative.

December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


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PLEASURES OF LIFE

Great Discoveries All happen in good time

By Scott Sheffield

It was December of 1956

and I was 9 years old, turning 10 three days after Christmas. My brother, Steve, was 7. My awareness of the world was just beginning to widen, and I asked my parents and my fourth-grade teacher a lot of questions about what I saw and heard. The questions led to revelations about many things, including a recently acquired knowledge about where my Christmas presents really came from. My brother still believed they came down the chimney.

My new knowledge was conferred upon me by my parents out of frustration from my continuous barrage of questions concerning the matter: How does Santa get down the chimney? I looked up there and there isn’t enough room for someone that fat. What if there’s a fire in the fireplace? Won’t he get burned? How can he carry all the toys for everyone on one sleigh? Does he go back to the North Pole for more when he runs out? How can he deliver all the toys in one night? Et cetera, et cetera. My parents surrendered this new information reluctantly with the strict prohibition that I not tell my brother anything that might ruin his belief in the story that, only a short time before, I had shared. Of course, after basking in the glow of having my suspicions confirmed, the first thing I wanted to do was tell my brother everything I had just learned. But, it was also cool that I knew something he didn’t, and, that I shared this secret with Mom and Dad. It made me feel grown up. I weighed the two options and decided not to say anything about it to my brother. The fact that a different decision most certainly would have carried consequences of an unpleasant nature probably also played a part. It was very difficult, though, not telling him something of such seismic impact. In the latter days of December, after Christmas and my birthday, Dad took us all out to dinner at the local Howard Johnson’s. Next to McDonald’s, HoJo’s was our favorite place to go. The menu listed food that boys our age loved: chicken pot pies, hot dogs — especially hot dogs. We liked the way they called them “frankforts” and because the buns were exotically sliced open from the top, not from the side like the ones we always had at home. It was a treat to order one of those. We walked into the restaurant and entered the glass-enclosed vestibule where the checkout counter stood. Dad asked the hostess for a table for four. Then,

as the hostess left us to check on seating, he moved, suddenly, across the vestibule to stand by the front glass wall. It seemed strange that he would do that, but by the look on his face something must have alarmed him. Trying hard not to alert anyone else, Dad stood there until the hostess came back to seat us. He motioned for us to go ahead, and once we were all through the door he followed us in. Curious, I walked back through the door and looked around. I saw nothing unusual. I looked out through the windows on both sides and saw nothing unusual outside either. Then I noticed a magazine stand sitting in the corner where Dad had positioned himself. I walked over to it and saw that it held copies of the latest issue of The Saturday Evening Post. They were standing on end so they were easy to see, which was obviously the supplier’s objective. I leaned in closer. On the cover of the magazine was a picture of a boy, about my brother’s age, clad in pajamas, standing in front of a chest of drawers. Wide-eyed, mouth agape, his expression was one of total surprise, if not shock. The bottom drawer of the chest was open, and the boy had apparently pulled some things out of it. In his left hand he held a red coat, and in his right, a white beard attached to a red cap trimmed in white fur. Exploring where he shouldn’t have been, this cover boy had made a discovery, and an unsettling one at that. It all became clear to me. Dad had moved in front of that display to hide it from my brother! He was obviously concerned that Steve would see it and start questioning his belief the way I had but, in his case, much too early in the learning curve. I hurried to catch up with the family and sat down. Steve and I had our frankforts, as usual, and drank the cream that came in the little glass vials with our parents’ coffee, as usual. When it was time to leave, I walked ahead of everyone and stationed myself in front of the magazine stand. When Dad came through the door, he looked over at me, gave me a smile and turned to pay the bill. Steve, being only 7, might have noticed The Saturday Evening Post, or maybe he wouldn’t have. He may not have understood what he was seeing even if he had. But I thought at the time that what Dad did was neat. And, just as we shared the secret, I felt that I had shared the experience of sparing Steve from enduring this element of growing up a little too soon. In the fullness of time since that night, as I have become a parent and a grandparent, I appreciate that what Dad did was far beyond neat. We never spoke about what took place that night, Dad and I, and I never told Steve about it. He probably doesn’t know to this day. He learned the truth about Santa right when he should have. PS Scott Sheffield moved to the Sandhills from Northern Virginia in 2004. He feels like a native but understands he can never be one.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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CROSSROADS

The Dread, Stage Left Taking a leap into the great unknown

By Joyce R eehling

It was night number 210, a long run for most

shows, and there she stood just off the stage waiting for the curtain to go up.

June Talley was used to this moment, a moment just off to the side when her second reality would kick in — she would spend the next two hours going through a piece of a life that must, at the same time, seem unknown and yet highly rehearsed. A life in the theater was both the real and the staged real. But this night she was feeling that awful sense of doom, frozen in doubt and fear. The Dread was upon her. Why now? Why, when I know this woman, this play, better than I know myself? This was not the first time that June tried to untie this knot. She once feared that the desire to run from this fright, run from the theater and hide in some dark spot, belonged only to her. She talked about it with Danny Stone, her stage husband, only to discover it had happened to him — and to all of the actors she knew. She was not alone. She laughed one night at dinner after the theater while gathered around a table at Joe Allen’s — the longtime theater bar and home-away-from-home for many actors. They all shared stories of this fright and wondered what would happen if one night, at about 7:59 p.m., The Dread hit each and every actor at the same time. What if they all turned and gave in to the fear and walked away? Thousands of people sitting in dark theaters expecting actors to live out the play but when the curtain went up no one, not a single person, could walk on stage? Samuel Beckett would love it. The producers would sue and Law & Order would have a new case trying to puzzle out if this was breach of contract or a mystical moment of The Dread claiming all of them, making them all powerless to go on. The laughter at the table that night was the comrade-in-arms, all-in-the-samefoxhole-together kind of laugh — a sound that was playful but bordered on real fright. Everyone knew what The Dread felt like and how you could sense yourself almost turning to walk away, but then the lights went brighter and the pull of honor kept you there. You somehow went into the awful unknown. But June did not scare easily, and this Dread had visited her before.

It’s that dark thing that tells you that so far you have been lucky, no one had figured out that you can’t act, that you might forget not one line but ALL your lines. The Dread whispers “fraud” and “imposter” as you speak every line. The Dread grabbed hold of Sir Laurence Olivier so tightly that for years the poor man performed not because he wanted to but because had he not done so it would have tanked his beloved National Theatre. He could not, would not, make eye contact with any actor, and he had the stage manager tell each new member of the cast that they “must never, at any point, speak directly to him. They must look to one side or the other and never make eye contact.” It may have abated over the years, or maybe it never really left the lord of the theater. He was handsome, famous and lauded and still The Dread found him, so why not June in this slight but funny comedy? “Five minutes to curtain” is the call to arms for actors, and so it was that June began her walk down the steel stairs from her solo dressing room to the stage level. The prop master, Jim, handed her the book she carried on stage. “So how’s Tom?” he asked. Tom was her real husband, the one at home. “Oh, you know, still hates the Yankees and loves the Cubs — what can I say?” Jim laughed and shook his head; he was a Mets guy. June glided to her spot, where she waited to enter. She was fine right up to the book and the question from Jim, and then The Dread appeared just to her left. He began to whisper, “You can’t do this. You never could and everyone knows it. You are a fool to go out and fail in front of 750 people. Before you are even home the Times will have it splashed all over tomorrow’s paper: ‘June Talley crashes and burns in front of packed Saturday night crowd — never to work again.’” A laugh froze in her throat, and she thought, for one split second, that it was all funny, but a chill went up her right side and straight to her heart and worse still, into her brain. The demon was a dark and deepening shadow she felt more than she could see. She silently shouted: “Get out of my head and my theater. Leave me alone.” She meant it, but The Dread paid no heed. “Places for Act I, ladies and gentleman, places.” The murmur in the house began to die down as the lights shifted and the curtain began a slow pull up to reveal the lovely drawing room of the play, the sound of a dog barking off in the distance, and the light on the set told us all that it was late spring with a touch of summer in the air. The lovely room was filled with fresh cut flowers and had the promise of a comedic evening.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


CROSSROADS

She walked to the window, set the book on the ledge as she had done for 210 other nights, gently pulled up the window, breathing in the evening air. She turned and said, “If tonight does not get them to fall in love, nothing will.” And then came the split second when she could not, for the life of her, remember what came next. She could see Danny just off stage and she looked at him with panic in her eyes. “Whatever am I doing here? What should I be doing to make this go well?” she ad-libbed while looking into the wings. Danny knew what was happening, so on he came, making up a few lines to help get her on track, then off they went — as rehearsed — as they had done for 210 other shows. “Good God,” she said at the intermission as she and Danny bolted up the stairs to change for Act II, “do you think anyone noticed?” “Darling, this poor comedy is hung together so loosely that no one would notice if an elephant took to the stage . . . thank God for genius comedic skill or this thing would have closed weeks ago.” They both laughed at how untrue that was. It was a fine comedy and they both were very good in it, but it was lovely of him to obscure the scary feeling of not remembering. The curtain came down that night to a standing ovation, as it did nightly, whether they deserved it or not — such is the Broadway audience. June began reading the script nightly before “five minutes” was called, even though she knew every word. The Dread had found its way into the theater and the only defense was preparedness and laughter. Thank God for Danny, thank God for the rest of the cast and crew who made light of it and then lived in fear that they would be next. As The Dread headed for another theater he paused to tip his hat because she had not broken down and because Danny had been a brick. The next night someone in Phantom of the Opera forgot the first verse to “Music of the Night” and everyone in June’s show knew he had moved on. The cast laughed at the telling of the ad-libbed lyrics that night as actors gathered at Joe Allen’s bar after all the shows let out. The guy who played The Count told the story with everyone falling about at his impersonation and joking about it all. No one knows better than an actor how a good laugh can dispel fear and nerves. Should you be in the theater on a night someone seems to be a bit off, or starts stumbling over lines, look just off stage, at the edge of the curtain. You may see a shadow looming, then turning to leave because his work there is done. PS Joyce Reehling is a 45-year veteran of the New York stage both on and off Broadway. She is a proud member of Actors Equity and Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Radio and Television Artists. She now resides in Pinehurst. She does not miss The Dread.

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PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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12/5 Jonathan Byrd and the Pickup Cowboys in

Concert

The Rooster’s Wife

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The Episcopal Day School’s 42nd Annual Candlelight Tour of Homes Episcopal Day School

Christmas on Connecticut Teddy Bear Tea

Weymouth Center for the Arts & Humanities

December

Thursday, Dec. 5: Jonathan Byrd and The Pickup Cowboys Sunday, Dec. 8: Keenan McKenzie and the Riffers Thursday, Dec. 12: Holiday Cheer with Joe Newberry and April Verch Sunday, Dec. 15: Amanda Anne Platt and the Honeycutters Thursday, Dec. 19: Open mic with The Parsons

Keenan McKenzie and the Riffers in Concert The Rooster’s Wife

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Holiday Cheer with Newberry and Verch The Rooster’s Wife

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Hannah Center Theater

12/14-15 Imagine Youth Theater presents “Elf the

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12/15 A Holiday Spectacular with Amanda Anne

Platt & The Honeycutters The Rooster’s Wife

12/18-20 Dickens and His Christmas Carol: An Original

Poplar Knight Spot

Take on a Timeless Tale The Village Chapel

114 Knight St., Aberdeen 910•944•7502 theroosterswife.org 68

December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


TRUE SOUTH

Christm a of Cons s Stream ciousne s s It’s a wra p By Susan S. Kelly

Curse people who send early Christmas cards. Go to attic to find Christmas card basket. Create Christmas card list Excel sheet. Begin

Shutterfly Christmas card process with family photo with attendant start-overs. Hit “submit.” Hit “submit.” Hit “submit.” Curse Shutterfly and start emailing people to find out new addresses instead. Wrap a present. Begin debating Christmas Eve dinner. Shrimp and grits? But we have grits at breakfast. Ribs? But getting sauce out of linen napkins is impossible. Switch to red napkins instead of white for Christmas Eve dinner. Debate polishing silver. Reflect upon idiocy of having scheduled various doctor appointments in December. Buy Christmas stamps. Create Christmas gift Excel sheet. Ask sister for the hundredth time what our in-law spending limit is. Ask sister what our spouse spending limit is. Ask sister what our niece and nephew spending limit is. Vow for the hundredth time not to do this next year. Wrap a present. While in Lowe’s, debate buying mace spray for daughters-in-laws’ Christmas stocking. Reject idea. Unfold a dozen tablecloths to try to find the ones that fit card table, table for six, and table for eight. Vow to organize linens in January. Debate polishing silver. Make stack for Christmas cards that need a handwritten note along with printed greeting. Make stack of envelopes you didn’t send cards to that you will if you have any left over. Wrap a present. Check cotton twine for tying tenderloin tail. Check Worcestershire bottle level for seasoning tenderloin. Check bourbon and cognac and rum levels for eggnog. See if mini blowtorch gun has enough ammo to make crème brûlée. Create Christmas food Excel sheet. Begin grocery list. Iron leftover usable ribbons. Wish for the hundredth year you had decent to/from gift tags. Wish for the hundredth time you hadn’t bought the cheap wrapping paper at TJ Maxx. Get out empty boxes. Try, for the 33rd year, to figure out lengths of expensive ribbon so that there’s enough to tie a bow at the top of the box. For the 33rd year, fail. Bring Christmas placemats downstairs. Bring all Christmas china downstairs. Take regular china upstairs, stash under beds, and hope you remember where you put it. Empty sugar into Christmas china sugar bowl. Empty salt and pepper shakers into Christmas salt and pepper shakers. Wrap a present. Debate polishing silver. Hand-address Christmas card envelopes, insert card, stamp with return address, affix postage, lick. Repeat 130 times. Feel unattractively smug and superior for hand-addressing all Christmas cards. Begin pile for Christmas cards from people you hadn’t intended to send one. Search stores for candles with

Christmassy scent to disguise ongoing terror of old-person-house smell. Discover Christmassy is a word. My computer recognizes it. Who knew? Take off exercise clothes, put on makeup, and hit the stores. Buy more Red Wine Out spray. Buy ZingZang for bloodies before it sells out. Search four different grocery stores for Nabisco Famous Chocolate Wafers. While in Bed, Bath & Beyond, debate buying silver polish and Goof Off for daughter-in-laws’ stocking stuffers. Reject idea. Debate other possibly fun but likely worthless stocking stuffers. Hardboiled egg slicer? Do they still like Big League Chew? Scout possible magnolias in public parks to steal for decorations. Realize the gold-and-black Christmas ornament you bought for a Wake Forest fan is actually an Appalachian State Yosef, not a Demon Deacon. Wrap it anyway and decide to fake surprise on Christmas morning. Wrap a present. Reshape wired wreath bow that’s been dangling from a clothes hanger in the attic. Wonder if this will be the year you finally fall down the attic steps and break your neck getting down the decorations. Put “day to get tree” on husband’s calendar. Move furniture upstairs to make room for tree. Find plastic sheet so overfilling tree stand doesn’t ruin carpet. Again. Go to tree lot for wreath and discover it doesn’t open until 10. Return to tree lot later the same day. Wrap a present. Lay fire. Wrap a present. Undertake too many things in one day and realize there’s nothing for supper. Run out of Christmas stamps and do not care that you’re using flags or the self-stick freebies from the Salvation Army for return addresses because the stamp pad gave up the ghost. Blow dust off crystal goblets. Change white soap in powder room to something vaguely green. Wrap a present. Go to four different grocery stores searching for “superfine sugar” for eggnog recipe. Create what-to-wear-to-which-thing-when Excel sheet. Ignore sister’s suggestion to download some app called “Calm.” Drive around and drive around and drive around hunting for this year’s location of pop-up Dewey’s bakery store for Moravian Sugar Cake. Debate polishing silver. Scrounge around looking for bent, folded nameplates for tables from previous years because you worked so hard on the calligraphy. Reflect on irony of having to save all the homemade gift treats for Christmas Eve and day, knowing there will be leftovers just when you’ve decided to try and not gorge anymore. Schedule manicure. Cancel appontment upon realization that manicure will be ruined polishing silver. On December 21, pitch all Excel lists because you don’t care anymore and what’s going to happen is going to happen. Begin New Year’s resolution list with Learn How to Use Excel. Wrap a present. PS Susan S. Kelly is a blithe spirit, author of several novels, and a proud grandmother.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


OUT OF THE BLUE

Shopping Gets the Boot One size definitely doesn’t fit all

By Deborah Salomon

I needed some new

footwear for a trip to Montreal, to visit my grandsons. I can’t say a “new pair of shoes” because shoes, as long we knew them, have disappeared from the racks. Now, a woman must choose from toe sandals, wedgies, clogs, athletic shoes, shooties, booties and boots.

Shooties, in case you’ve gone barefoot for the past couple of years, are mostly shoes, almost boots. Booties are definitely boots, but short. Very short. I decided on booties of a material and color that would be OK with jeans, khakis and, if necessary, stretchy black yoga pants. So I went online. Zappos was my first stop, where I discovered that leather — even shortened, on sale with free shipping and returns — costs way too much. By then, a cookie was in the wind, drowning my browser in every color, material, size and permutation. I saw snakeskin booties, embroidered denim booties, patent “leather” booties, open-toe booties, studded booties in colors from Oreo brown to Wizard of Dorothy red. In hopes of escaping the deluge I found something that looked reasonable on Amazon and ordered them, not knowing I would receive minute-by-minute email notifications of their progress. I felt like Mission Control tracking Apollo 11 to the moon. While waiting, I shopped Belk. Even if it had been the right day and I presented the right coupon and the booties brand hadn’t been excluded, the price was impossible. My Amazon booties arrived on time. They were awful, pure plastic, stiff as a board. I will never again order footwear online, which is what I said last time. Back online, I pulled up my order to investigate returns. Miracle of miracles, all I had to do was print out a label and take the box to Kohl’s, where it was packed and shipped back free. In addition, the lady who accepted the return handed me a Kohl’s 25 percent off coupon. Smart move. Kohl’s (and other retailers) provides this service to get people into the store, since the coupon wasn’t good for online orders. Fair enough. I’ll look at their booties. I found a reasonable little number in taupe suede — taupe being the color of granny’s support stockings and suede, a less-plastic version of manmade. They were on sale, like everything else at Kohl’s. But alas, no taupe in my size. Only green and black.

Who wears green booties? I tried them on for size. Definitely Peter Pan. Not to worry. The saleslady directed me to a kiosk where, 10 prompts later (with her assistance), my booties were ordered and would be delivered free. However, if I chose to order them in the comfort of my home, delivery charges apply. The booties arrived as promised. Ten minutes after the handover, I received an email saying they had been delivered. Honestly, I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. Instead, I remember how new shoes used to be such an event. The “fitter,” usually a man wearing shirt and tie but no jacket, measured feet on an instrument resembling a wide slide rule. Then he brought out several sizes, perhaps a similar style to keep the sale alive in case the first choice disappointed. Then he pushed shoe polish, or a suede brush, or extra shoelaces. “Perhaps madam would be interested in a matching handbag?” Why am I telling you this? Nobody cares about my footwear. Because ’tis the holiday shopping season, hardly recognizable. I remember movies like The Godfather with scenes of shoppers strolling down Fifth Avenue, laden with packages. I don’t miss standing in line at the post office. I appreciate saving money, time and energy. But something is missing: the thrill of the chase, of finding and touching the cashmere sweater in your mate’s favorite color. Of appreciating the sparkle in a teddy bear’s eye. Of collapsing at a lunch counter for an egg salad sandwich and fountain Coke. This was part of the holiday experience, now devolved into camping out at the store with obscenely huge TVs and coveted video game loss leaders. Besides, you never actually see the gift ordered online and sent directly to a sister, a grandparent. Will it be nice, or awful, like the cheapo booties I returned? I know, I know. Who has the patience? And where are the one-stop department stores that gift-wrapped free . . . and delivered? To be fair, the internet stocks every color in every size. Cyber Monday has turned into an orgy of running the list, getting it over in a sitting or two. Gift cards remove the human element completely. But something is lost in transit, some connection between giver and recipient, a gift itself. Thankfully, our little towns have lovely options — maybe not in every size and color, but selected, in person, by the giver — no bar code, no back order, no 28-digit tracking number. No time? That’s what I can’t figure out. With so many time-saving devices at our fingertips . . . why not? PS Deborah Salomon is a staff writer for PineStraw and The Pilot. She may be reached at debsalomon@nc.rr.com.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

71


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December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


MOM INC

Magnificent Seven Their precious moments together

By R enee Whitmore

It’s December, cloudy with a chance of

snow. Seven students sit in chairs along two tables. The timer is set for 12 minutes. We write.

Grace is to my left. Curly brownish-blonde hair and stylish glasses frame her face. Her purple pen fills her lined pages with pretty cursive. She stops for a moment, rubs her left ring finger, and continues. She tells her tale through the eyes of a character named Mercy, who graduates from high school and moves to New York City to become an actor. She meets a guy, of course, and we wonder where he fits in . . . Lauren sits directly in front of me, second row. She prefers to type on her laptop, and I watch her as she squints, backspaces, reworks a phrase, smiles, types on. Lauren pulls us in with descriptive scenes and intense characters and endings that surprise us and make her grin in delight . . . Abby’s in the second row, to my left. Her brown hair is pulled up in a ponytail. Slightly slouched over her notebook, she writes quickly, turns a page, and a minute later, turns another. She asks, “Is this believable?” or, “Should I add more dialogue?” and treats everyone’s story as if it’s the only one she cares about. And, at that very moment, it is . . . Makenzie sits in between Abby and Lauren in the second row. She writes meticulously — with a pencil. She erases. Her eyes squint as she ponders the sentence she just wrote. She erases some more. Thinks. Writes. Makenzie is working on a thriller. A man wakes up in a hospital bed with no recollection of

how he arrived. A girl he has never met sneaks into the room, yanks out his IVs, and says, “We’re getting out of here . . .” Brittany sits on the far right side of the room, also in the second row, armed with her Starbucks latte with extra espresso. Her long dark hair drapes over her gray hoodie as she writes. She examines every sentence before she moves to the next, and she thinks every scene, every character, every plot twist through before she commits it to paper. She pulls us into her real-life stories . . . There are two Sams. Sam R. sits right in front of me, a left-hander who writes in harsh, black ink, his eyebrows furrowing. He thinks and continues writing. Sam R. is in the Air Force and will travel to Germany this month. He plans to Skype us. His characters linger in our minds . . . Sam S. has long, wavy hair spilling over his shoulders and an entire gallon of Deer Park water. He bites a nail, lays his head on his left hand, and writes. He pre-writes in his mind, and when he’s got it just about right, it comes spilling out on paper. His stories are intense — there’s always some sort of dark psychopath involved . . . I look at my class, quietly writing. Someone coughs. Someone sighs. Someone erases. There’s a steady click of the keys on Lauren’s laptop, a sound that’s more comforting than distracting. Our time together is far from ordinary. My iPhone’s alarm sounds. Our 12 minutes is up. I take a sip of my hot tea and smile. I glance out the window. The snow begins to fall. PS When Renee isn’t teaching English or being a professional taxi driver for her two boys, she is working on her first book.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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FOOD FOR THOUGHT

Christmas, Sweet and Savory

The spirit of the holidays begins in the kitchen. Cheese biscuits, gingerbread and garnet-hued poached pears are three simple yet festive ways to celebrate By Jane Lear

“T

he harried modern person looks to the winter holidays like someone slumped across a railroad track contemplating an oncoming train,” mused food writer Laurie Colwin more than 25 years ago. Her words resonate today amid the ever-increasing hype, and I, for one, refuse to get caught up in the fray. When it comes to feeding people, for instance, I tend to rely on a small repertoire of things I can pull together without too much fuss and which will make folks feel cherished. Cheese biscuits are at the top of my list. I’m using the word biscuits here in the British sense to mean crisp wafers, and it’s still fairly common parlance in Colonial cities. In fact, you’ll see a recipe for these cayenne-spiced nibblies (often in the form of cheese straws) in every community and Junior League cookbook published south of the Mason-Dixon Line. They’re standard fare at drinks parties, wedding receptions, and almost every other social occasion you can think of. I’m very fond of how my mother served them, with soups and stews. Perhaps this was because the store-bought bread available at the time wasn’t particularly flavorful (a basic baguette or sourdough loaf was unattainable), or perhaps she wanted a change from baking powder biscuits or cornbread; I don’t know. But cheese biscuits are a great way to add a little savory richness, some finesse, to an everyday meal. One — just one, mind you — is also a civilized way to end an evening, along with a nightcap, or what some of us call a baby-doll. And cheese biscuits make a fabulous present. Even though it’s possible to buy every imaginable delicacy online these days, I think people are especially thrilled to open a gift that is homemade and almost profound in its plainness. And that is not something sweet.

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Southerners appreciate cheese biscuits because they know one can never have too big a stash. For expat Northerners, there is an element of surprise, and, once tasted, delight. “Where have these been all my life?” the recipients exclaim, reaching into the tin for another. And cheese biscuits have legs — that is, real staying power. Not only are they good keepers, but you don’t get sick to death of looking at them, the way you do Christmas cookies. Face it: By early January, those cookies are so last year. Cheese biscuits are so simple to make that anyone, even a person who suffers from an extreme case of F.O.F. (Fear of Flour), can throw them together without thinking about it. The secret is to buy the sharpest cheddar you can find, and add a little Parmigiano, “for sass,” as the cookbook author Damon Lee Fowler likes to say. Gingerbread is another standby in my holiday kitchen because it is easy to make and a hit with young and old alike. It can be enjoyed absolutely plain or dressed up with a glaze made from lemon juice and confectioners sugar, or with billows of whipped cream flavored with a little bourbon. It’s the sort of thing you can serve guests at a fancy dinner party, and they will immediately feel like they’re part of the family. Whenever I make gingerbread, I am reminded of my Aunt Eloise — actually, a longtime friend of my mother’s — who often visited us during the holidays. She would arrive in an immaculately maintained Buick and insist on carrying her own suitcase into our hall, setting it down with a little sigh. (“Always travel light, dear,” she counseled, years before I ever went anywhere. “You may have to move fast.”) My brother and I couldn’t wait to present ourselves before Aunt Eloise

December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


PHOTOGRAPH BY JAMES STEFIUK

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

because we knew exactly what would happen. She would shake her head in amazement at how much we had grown, and hug us thoroughly before rummaging through a capacious handbag for two chocolate bars, wrapped in thin gold foil and glossy paper. We had to open them very carefully, because Aunt Eloise wanted the foil back. Like my parents, she had grown up during the Great Depression, and never wasted a thing. She would smooth the sheets and tuck them away with a smile. The days before Christmas were filled with tree-cutting and decoration, setting up the crèche, which had an expanded cast (my father trolled thrift shops and pawn shops looking, in particular, for the Baby Jesus — he couldn’t bear the thought of one being adrift), and frantic gift wrapping. And then, of course, there was the gingerbread. Dark, moist, and spicy, it was Aunt E.’s specialty. One year, she turned to face my brother and me in the kitchen. “I have always made gingerbread for you,” she said, removing her apron and hitching it up, neat and workmanlike, around me. “Now, it’s your turn.” She switched on the oven and then got comfortable at the kitchen table. Mom made cups of tea for them both and buttered the pan. My brother stirred the flour, baking soda and spices together. I plugged in the Sunbeam and managed to cream the butter and dark brown sugar, then beat in the eggs and cane syrup — preferred by all in our house to molasses. I stopped, startled, when the mixture looked curdled, but Aunt Eloise peered into the bowl and said, “Oh, it’s fine! Just keep going and see what happens.” After beating in the flour mixture and a little hot water, everything miraculously came together. After my mother helped me pour the batter into the pan, she put it into the hot oven. By the time the dishes were done, so was the gingerbread. Aunt Eloise patted several pockets — she had a magician’s knack for misdirection — before unerringly settling on the right one, then fished out an envelope full of small gold stars, cut out of foil. They smelled very faintly of chocolate as we pressed them into the warm cake. Now, when it comes to holiday food that is both easy and spectacular, things get a bit trickier. It pays to keep a file of these recipes, and if they happen to be gluten and/or dairy free, or not terribly bad for you, then so much the better. My go-to favorite is a recipe for scarlet poached pears developed by my former Gourmet colleague Paul Grimes, a brilliant food stylist with a painter’s eye. Because poached pears rarely look as good as they taste, Paul took a cue from a dessert at Le Chateaubriand, in Paris, which uses a beet to intensify the pears’ hue. If you or yours don’t happen to like beets, no worries: You can’t taste the beet in the least, and the fresher and juicier it is, the deeper in color the fruit will become. Beets have long been used as a dye for textiles and food, by the way. Before the advent of artificial colorants, they put the “red” in red velvet cake, for instance, and they turn Easter eggs a delicate mauve. The vegetable’s saturated color, like that of bougainvillea, amaranth and the flowers of some cacti, comes from pigments called betalains (from Beta vulgaris, the Latin name of the common beet). Poaching is among the gentlest of cooking techniques. Although it isn’t complicated, you do want to be mindful of the heat. You don’t want the liquid to vigorously boil — otherwise, whatever it is you’re cooking will either break apart or toughen. A lower flame allows you greater control and precision. The end result — whether you are poaching chicken, say, or eggs or fruit — should possess the quality of moelleux (mwall-YEW) — a soft, velvety mouthfeel that is completely, captivatingly French. If you are at all resistant to the idea of poached pears, you’ve likely been traumatized by one that threatened to skid across the table when pierced with a fork. This usually happens during a first date or dinner with the boss. But understanding moelleux — the pears should be so tender they practically melt in your mouth — is a gamechanger. The key to success is very basic: You must cook the pears until they are done. Since the pears may be of slightly different sizes or at different stages of ripeness, be sure to test them all. When you insert a small skewer or paring knife, it should glide in but the flesh should still feel solid, not mushy.

Cheese biscuits, gingerbread and gorgeous poached pears have become three of my favorite traditions of the season, and here’s hoping they find a place at your table as well. Happy holidays!

Gingerbread

I don’t have Aunt Eloise’s recipe, but this is a close approximation. It’s based on the Tropical Gingerbread (minus the canned coconut) in Charleston Receipts — a standard reference for both Aunt E. and my mother — and the Old-Fashioned Gingerbread in the big yellow Gourmet Cookbook. When it comes to the cane syrup, you should know that this syrup made from ribbon cane is lighter and sweeter than molasses. Not only is it a versatile baking ingredient, it makes the ultimate condiment for pancakes, waffles, and hot biscuits. Cane syrup is available at supermarkets in the South; one of my favorite mail-order brands is Steen’s (steenssyrup.com), from Louisiana. 1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature, plus extra to butter pan 2 cups all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking soda 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice or cloves 1/2 teaspoon salt 3/4 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar 2 large eggs 1/2 cup pure ribbon cane syrup 2/3 cup hot water 1. Preheat the oven to 350° and butter an 8- or 9-inch square baking pan. In one bowl stir together the flour, baking soda, spices and salt. In another bowl with an electric mixer beat together the butter and brown sugar at medium-high speed until nice and fluffy. 2. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then beat in the cane syrup. At this point, the batter might look curdled, but, as Aunt Eloise would tell you, don’t worry about it. Reduce the mixer speed to low and beat in the flour mixture, then the hot water. Continue to beat until the batter is smooth, a minute or so. 3. Pour the batter into the pan and bake in the middle of the oven until a wooden skewer inserted in the center of the gingerbread comes out perfectly clean, around 35 to 40 minutes. Put the pan on a wire rack to cool for a bit, then serve warm. The gingerbread is also a great keeper: the flavor deepens after a day or so, and if tightly wrapped, the cake stays moist.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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Scarlet Poached Pears à la Gourmet

Serves 6 If your pears are very small or ripe (instead of firm-ripe), then set the kitchen timer for 20 minutes, say, instead of the 35 to 40 minutes specified below. And if the pears are indeed done more quickly, then transfer them to a bowl to cool, remove the bay leaf and cinnamon, and continue to simmer the poaching liquid until thickened and syrupy. About the poaching wine: Orange Muscat is not the easiest dessert wine to find, but don’t fret. Another muscat won’t have the same alluring orange-apricot aroma, but it will still be delicious. Serve these beauties with a fork, for stabilizing the pear, and a dessert spoon, for scooping flesh and juice. 2 cups Orange Muscat such as Quady Winery’s Essensia (from a 750-ml bottle) 1 medium red beet (1/4 pound), peeled and sliced 1 tablespoon sugar 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice 1 cinnamon stick (about 2 inches in length) 1 bay leaf 3 small firm-ripe pears (about 1 pound total), such as Forelle or Bosc, peeled, halved lengthwise, and cored 1. Bring wine, beet, sugar, lemon juice, cinnamon stick, and bay leaf to a boil in a 1 1/2 - to 2-quart saucepan, stirring until sugar is dissolved. 2. Add pears and cover with a round of parchment paper to help them cook and color evenly. (So that they stay covered with liquid, place a small saucer on top of the parchment as they cook.) Reduce the heat and simmer, turning occasionally, until pears are tender and liquid is syrupy, 35 to 40 minutes. Transfer pears to a bowl. Discard cinnamon stick and bay leaf and pour syrup over pears. Cool completely in syrup, about 30 minutes. Poached pears can be made 1 day ahead and chilled in the syrup; the color will deepen the longer they stay in the syrup.

December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills

PHOTOGRAPH BY JAMES STEFIUK

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FOOD FOR THOUGHT

Cheese Biscuits

PHOTOGRAPH BY JAMES STEFIUK

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon coarse salt A generous pinch cayenne 1 stick unsalted butter, cut into pieces and softened to room temperature 6 ounces extra-sharp orange cheddar plus 2 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano, coarsely grated (about 2 cups total) and at room temperature Finely chopped crystallized ginger, for garnish 1. Whisk together the flour, salt and cayenne in a bowl until combined well. In another bowl, with a stand mixer, beat together butter and cheese until smooth. Beat dry ingredients into cheese mixture until smooth. The dough should be very malleable, like Play-Doh. 2. Roll the dough into a couple of logs for slicing. Wrap in waxed paper and chill until firm but not hard, about 30 minutes. (Dough keeps in the refrigerator 1 week. You can also freeze it, wrapped well; let it thaw at room temperature until pliable enough to work with.) 3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and cut each log into 1/8-inch rounds, giving the log a quarter turn after each slice so it stays round. Put a dab of the crystallized ginger on top of each biscuit, pressing gently so it adheres. 4. You can either bake the biscuits, one baking sheet at a time, in the middle of the oven, or set the racks in the upper and lower thirds, and switch the baking sheets halfway through. Depending on the size and thickness of your biscuits, they’ll take anywhere from 16 to 18 minutes to bake. They are done when the bottoms are golden but the tops and sides are still pale. Let cool on a wire rack. Biscuits will stay fresh in an airtight tin for days and even improve in flavor. PS Jane Lear, formerly of Gourmet magazine and Martha Stewart Living, is the editor of Feed Me, a quarterly magazine for Long Island food lovers.

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PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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3rd Honorable Mention: Bonny Henderson - Leafy Swirls

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PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


B I R D WA T C H

Berry Christmas! For the cedar waxwing, holiday indulgence means feasting on holly berries, and other native fruits

By Susan Campbell

The cold weather is here and just in

time for the holidays, with red berries everywhere. The abundant moisture last spring has spurred our local trees and shrubs to produce a bumper crop of fruit. Hollies in particular are covered with plump, ripe morsels. Any time now large flocks of cedar waxwings will be appearing to take advantage of nature’s bounty.

Waxwings are sleek, brown birds that sport a black mask, yellowish belly and distinctive tail with a splash of yellow on its tip. Although both males and females have a crest of tan feathers, it is rarely raised during the nonbreeding season. These birds get their name from the bright red, waxy spots on their wing feathers. The waxwing’s high-pitched whistle is also singular. The Bohemian waxwing, a close relative, is a larger, grayer bird much farther to the north and west in North America. So far, no individual of this species has been documented in our state. During the warmer months, cedar waxwings can be found in northerly latitudes during breeding season throughout a variety of moist habitats. A pair will seek out a sizeable conifer and the female will build a nest of soft material in which to lay her eggs. Three to five young are normal and, not long after they fledge, the family will join with other waxwings even before fall migration begins. The species is very social most of the year and in winter it is not unusual for flocks to number in the hundreds. Cedar waxwings are unusual in that they can subsist for months at a time on berries. Although they do feed on insects in the summertime, they have no

trouble consuming only fruit when the weather gets cold. They swallow whatever small berries they can find: seeds and all. This can be problematic in late winter when the sweet morsels ferment to the point that they intoxicate birds. Bingeing waxwings are at risk of being picked off by predators or being injured if they hit a window. These handsome birds surprise people when they show up at birdbaths. If you are fortunate enough to experience cedar waxwings descending en masse, it is quite a spectacle. Of course, they can drain a water source in no time if they have been feeding heavily nearby. Also, it is important to be aware that when waxwings come close to buildings to eat or drink, they may make a fatal error by flying into the reflection of the sky on windows. To prevent this, break up window reflection with sun catchers, stickers, hanging plants and the like. The best approach is to hang things on the outside of the window — but this is not always practical. If you want to attract cedar waxwings to your yard, add more native fruiting trees and shrubs for them and an abundant source of water. You could consider any one of a variety of hollies, or try adding cedar, juniper, serviceberry or wax myrtle. Do not forget that, like all of our wintering birds, waxwings need thick cover while they are here. Many of the berry-producing species are valuable for cover as well while Southern magnolia (many in the bay family in fact), Leyland cypress or even red tips may prove beneficial. Important note: To those who have nandina bushes in your yards: Remove the berries immediately — or better yet, replace the plants entirely. Nandina is now recognized as being highly toxic (containing significant amounts of cyanide) and is responsible for killing dozens of waxwings at a time in recent years here in the southeastern United States. PS Susan would love to receive your wildlife sightings and photos at susan@ncaves.com.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


SPORTING LIFE

Paddle’s Debut The smell of cedar and the memory of an old friend

By Tom Bryant

It’s going to snow! Four magic

ILLUSTRATION BY LINDA BRYANT

words that can get a duck hunter’s heart racing with anticipation; and if he’s a born optimist like me, the coming storm promises to open the door to all kinds of wonderful adventures.

I was out in the yard loading up the Bronco with my gunning bag, decoys, waders and a favorite duck-hunting shotgun. My little yellow Lab was beside herself with excitement. Ready to do what she was born to do, chase ducks. I opened the passenger door and let her jump onto the seat. We were ready. Christmas was right around the corner, and my afternoon duty was, along with a quick duck hunt, to gather boughs of cedar and holly for decorations in the house. It was a chore I took seriously, and I had a couple of cedar trees and one magnificent holly loaded with red berries that I remembered from earlier summer outings. They promised to be perfect for our holiday needs. My favorite duck hole is a farm of about 400 acres bordering the headwaters of a city lake. The farm is a microcosm of all kinds of wildlife. In my many trips hunting and fishing there, I’ve seen ducks, geese, doves, deer, turkeys, beaver and otters. The little area is home to more wild game than any other small space I’ve ever had the benefit of experiencing. Needless to say, the farm is one of my favorite places, and I try to visit at every opportunity. Paddle, my little yellow Lab, was about 6 months old and had yet to retrieve a duck. We had dove hunted quite a bit, and she was a natural at retrieving doves, but had yet to prove herself on ducks.

A few flakes started to fall just as we were nearing the farm and picked up in earnest when I got out of the Bronco to unlock the gate to the pasture and the small dirt road, not much more than a cow path, that led through the tree line bordering the creek. I might as well put her in fourwheel drive before I head across the pasture, I thought. I bought the Bronco new in 1977, the last year Ford made the small size. After that came the era of big trucks, and I was happy I had this one. It served my purpose without hesitating and took me into some rough places in the woods where walking would have been tough. The cedar trees were in the tree line next to the creek, and I clipped several boughs for Linda’s Christmas decorations. The holly tree was magnificent, festooned with red berries galore. I took several small limbs with plenty of berries and piled everything in the back of the truck. To me, there is nothing that will set off the beauty of Christmas like nature’s own decorations. One holiday season down on my granddad’s farm in South Carolina, he actually cut a 12-foot holly tree to use in the dining room of the old plantation house. The tree just fit in the 14-foot ceilings, and together with all the other decorations gave the house a wonderfully festive look. The room could have been used as a set for Scrooge’s Ghost of Christmas Present. Snow was now falling in earnest, and Paddle was romping around checking out all the bushes. Every now and then, she would tear off around the truck in a burst of happiness that made me laugh. She was having a fantastic time. I decided to grab the shotgun and walk down to the creek. I had no idea that ducks would be moving, but I wanted to give Paddle a chance to get wet. Snow came in flurries with big flakes. It was too early for a memorable snow, but the wet weather added to the holiday festive spirit. Without hesitation, Paddle leaped into the creek, swam around a bit, and came back to the bank. I swear she looked like she was grinning as she looked up at me. Suddenly from the headwaters where the swamp spreads, I saw a

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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SPORTING LIFE

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movement over the tree line. It was a big duck. Visibility was low, but I could tell it was either a mallard or a black duck. Instinctively, I raised the shotgun and snapped off a shot. The duck crumpled and fell about 50 yards down the creek. Paddle watched it all the way, and in an instant, before I could stop her, she was in the water heading toward the downed duck, swimming so fast she almost left a wake. It was a wonderful sight. A dog that was born to retrieve ducks and me just watching, the instigator of it, but now a cheering spectator. In little time, Paddle grabbed the duck and turned, heading back to the shore and me. It’s still in my memory today, that little dog with her first big duck gliding through the water as if propelled by a motor. She reached the bank, walked up to me, sat, and presented the duck to me as if it was something she did every day. I took from her the biggest, blackest black duck I’ve ever seen. She shook off the cold water, heeled beside me and looked up the creek to see if another duck was on the way. At 6 months old, all business. I couldn’t stand it. I knelt down and grabbed her in a great big hug, then we both rolled around on the wet ground. Not good training, I’m sure, but hey, she was my dog and I deserved to celebrate. Snow was changing over to rain, and as the sky lowered with threats of a downpour, we hurried to the Bronco, loaded up, drove back across the pasture and headed home. Paddle was curled up on the passenger’s seat sound asleep, and the big black duck was on the floor almost under her nose. Every now and then, she would twitch as if she was swimming after it again. The little AM radio in the truck was tuned to a station playing Christmas carols, and the cedar bedding smell that emanated from a wet Paddle, along with the freshly cut boughs of cedar, presented a Christmas fragrance you would never be able to buy in a bottle. Paddle and I had many more memorable hunts over the years, but that one day when we were both young and full of optimism and confidence was made for the memory book. Several years ago, Paddle went to her reward where big ducks are plentiful and she can retrieve to her heart’s content. I still miss her. The old Bronco is parked in our garage. I don’t drive it much anymore except around Christmas, when we head to the woods for holiday greenery. I’ll load the little truck with cedar and holly and remember Christmases past, when Paddle and I were young and chasing ducks. PS Tom Bryant, a Southern Pines resident, is a lifelong outdoorsman and PineStraw’s Sporting Life columnist.

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G O L F T OW N J O U R NA L

Payne’s Last Stand A look back at Stewart and the ’99 U.S. Open

By Lee Pace

In 2004, I wrote just under

10,000 words on Payne Stewart’s triumph in the 1999 U.S. Open at Pinehurst for one of the foundation chapters in a book commissioned by Pinehurst Resort titled The Spirit of Pinehurst.

I told the story of his evolution as an individual over the decade of the 1990s before that fateful 1999, with his emotional triumph in June and tragic death in a plane crash in October. Stewart morphed from a man who snickered at one vanquished opponent early in his career but had the grace after beating Phil Mickelson at Pinehurst to congratulate Mickelson on the impending birth of his first child. The chapter chronicled his equipment overhaul beginning in 1998 and how his new clubs and his right-brained constitution were an ideal mesh of feel and style on a golf course dialed in for players who were artists and not scientists. It detailed how missing the cut in Memphis the week before the Open allowed Stewart to arrive in Pinehurst early, put in four focused and productive practice days, and be honed to a razor’s edge when the championship began.  How landing in a sand-filled divot was part of his downfall at the 1998 Open at Olympic but how he’d learned to hit out of them a year later — and did so with aplomb in that final round, most notably on his third shot on the fourth hole, when he surgically picked a wedge shot out of a pit and safely onto the green.  How he connected with the townsfolk around Pinehurst, joked with them in the grocery store, dined at the Pine Crest Inn and had a heartfelt reunion with former instructor Harvie Ward before the final round.  And how his impromptu scissor job on a long-sleeve rain jacket on a misty and drizzly Sunday ignited a fashion trend. Thus I wondered what I might glean from reading Kevin Robbins’ book The Last Stand of Payne Stewart — The Year that Golf Changed Forever. The book was released in October, two decades after Stewart was killed when the plane he was taking from Orlando to Dallas malfunctioned and sent six people to their death.  The answer was, quite a lot. Robbins does an excellent job chronicling Stewart’s upbringing in Missouri in the 1960s and early ’70s and how he developed his game under the tutelage of his father, Bill, and Sam Reynolds, the club professional at

Hickory Hills Country Club in Springfield. Stewart was weaned on steel shafts, persimmonwood heads, forged-blade irons and balls wound with rubber bands inside covers of balata rubber. Stewart “churned a lot of dirt” as a youth and learned to develop “a sense of the shot through the soles of his shoes and a clear, crisp picture of the way he wanted the shot to look and feel off the club,” Robbins writes. “He learned to visualize shots before hitting them, to develop rhythm through his feet.” The book traces how Stewart found his niche on the PGA Tour in the 1980s but became an outlier because of an attitude that could be “prickly, cocky, arrogant and brash,” as his sports psychologist described him in the early days. “He was a peacock, a Missouri showman, someone who wanted to be heard and noticed and remembered and admired,” writes Robbins, a longtime golf writer with the Austin StatesmanAmerican. “He was loud in a sport that valued silence. He was cocksure in a game that promoted humility and modesty. He was too much for some of his peers who preferred less.” The book traces in intricate detail Stewart’s maturation over the 1990s, when he struggled professionally and personally but began laying the groundwork for his Pinehurst triumph by challenging for the win the previous year at Olympic, then finally breaking a long victory drought at Pebble Beach in early 1999.  “Payne went off into the wilderness in 1991,” Robbins says. “He was searching. When he emerged in 1998, he didn’t just talk like a different man, he showed people he was a different man.” That point was poignantly made in September that year when Stewart conceded a putt and a victory to Colin Montgomerie on the final day of the Ryder Cup at Brookline after the United States’ victory had been assured. Robbins captures the night before in the U.S. team room when Stewart spoke movingly of the pain he’d felt since 1985 following the death of his father to cancer.  “Sitting nearby, O’Meara, Tom Lehman and Hal Sutton — the last of their generation preparing for their last singles Sunday of their Ryder Cup careers — were moved by Payne in a way they never had been before or even thought possible,” Robbins writes.  That capsule sets the stage for what to me was the most interesting angle of the book — how 1999 was the unofficial passing of the torch with players like Stewart, Lehman, Sutton and O’Meara, all in their 40s, taking a back seat to a younger generation of players and a new frontier of technology. The new guys played with graphite and titanium shafts and the Titleist Pro V1 and spent their spare time

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pounding dumbbells rather than Michelobs. “From a commercial standpoint, there was a lot to like about the state of golf in the summer of 1998,” Robbins writes. “The new balls were designed to make shots more predictable, especially in the wind. Graphite shafts and metal woods rendered long holes simpler to manage. The blocky, cavity-backed irons were less demanding of a perfect strike. Golf was getting easier for a greater number of people. But that welcome development robbed the ancient game of some of its art. Payne, Lehman, and their generation didn’t need technology to make shots. They made their own. They were the last true shot-makers of the millennium.” Players like Mickelson, Tiger Woods and Sergio Garcia were playing a different game. Soon to follow were Bubba Watson, Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, Dustin Johnson and, most recently, Brooks Koepka. “Golf came easier to the new guys because the game was easier,” Robbins says today. “This was the emergence of athletes on the golf course. They hit the ball a long way. They didn’t really care if the ball rolled into the rough. Everything was different — the equipment, the ball, the diet, fitness, the psychologists. There was a confluence of forces that came together in 1999.” Not a day goes by at Pinehurst two decades later that a resort guest doesn’t have a photo taken while making the “Payne pose” alongside his statue beside the 18th green of No. 2. Stewart’s photos and his autograph are still displayed in the lobby of the Pine Crest Inn. The USGA used the occasion of the 2014 U.S. Open at Pinehurst to posthumously honor Stewart with the Bob Jones Award, and golfer Rickie Fowler was resplendent that week wearing plusfour trousers, Stewart’s trademark.  Some of those things, I’d forgotten. The year 2019 is a nice round milestone to reflect on 1999.  “The passage of time — in this case, 20 years — allows us to see that year and Stewart’s comeback in a sharper perspective,” says Robbins. “We didn’t know at the time how golf was shifting. The emergence of a 23-year-old Tiger Woods and players of his generation, who played the game with power and athleticism, essentially was making obsolete the kind of finesse game that Stewart and his generation played. I also was interested in portraying Stewart’s maturation — we might call it redemption — on a personal level. He was showing us something: his growth.” PS Chapel Hill-based writer Lee Pace has written about Payne Stewart and dozens of memorable golfers in Pinehurst over some three decades. Write him at leepace7@gmail.com.

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Your mind clears. You forget all the worries of the day. And then your Spa treatment begins.


December ���� The Aurora Life in the South suits me just fine — warm winters, slow speech, kudzu, and iced tea. But just once I want to stand in the frigid dark, wrapped in a fur-lined parka, mukluks on my feet, scanning the horizon for a snow drift that might morph into a polar bear and watch the aurora borealis explode across the night sky — green and red lights circling and waving, twisting and weaving, in a shimmering dance. — Karen Filipski

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


The Last

Christmas Tree Fiction by Bruce Shields • Illustrations by Harry Blair

I

n a small village, deep in a valley of the Great Smoky Mountains, freshly fallen snow glistened in the late afternoon light, blanketing the ground and adorning the firs and the cedars and the tall, stately pines. The sun cast long shadows across the snow, giving a warm, orange glow to all it touched. Horse-drawn sleighs glided along the streets, and bells on the harnesses jingled in the chilly air. Wreaths of green boughs with their red ribbons hung from the lamplights. Smoke wafted from the chimneys of the homes lining the streets, and festive lights sparkled from their windows. You could almost smell the gingerbread and hot apple cider. High up on the mountainside, an old man looked down on the twinkling lights and curling smoke through passive gray eyes. He knew the joy and excitement the people were feeling at Christmas. He knew how the children’s eyes would sparkle as the families sat by their fires at night and talked of the days ahead. But for him, all that was many, many years ago — like another lifetime. Now his long hair and beard were white as the snow around him, and if any sense of joy or sorrow remained, the distant stare in his tired eyes gave no hint of what it might be. His name was Samuel Cross, although most of the villagers knew him as Old Sam. He had lived alone in the mountains for as long as anyone could remember. He was a gentle recluse who seemed to want nothing more than to be left alone — with one exception. Each year, he brought the villagers their Christmas trees. He grew the trees beside his mountain cabin, tending to them as though they were children of his own. Indeed, they were his family. When Christmas was a few days away, he would carefully select and cut the trees to load on his sleigh and sell in the village square. It was the only time he was ever seen by the villagers and, by Christmas Eve, he would be gone. Old Sam spent the day cutting the trees, and with his sleigh piled high with the fragrant evergreens, he was ready to begin the long trip down the mountain. Just before he mounted his sleigh, he paused beside a small fir. It was no more than 3 feet tall, with a bent trunk that supported a few poorly arranged boughs. Although he normally left the smaller trees to grow for future years, something inside him said that he could not leave this one behind. He knelt beside it in the snow and carefully cut the trunk with his sharp axe. Then he carried the little tree to his sleigh and placed it on top of the others. Sam climbed up onto the seat, gave the reins a snap and began his journey down the mountain. A full moon lit the way and, with a bed of fresh snow on the road, the old mare pulled the sleigh along at a smart pace. Three bells on the horse’s harness made a cheerful jingle that carried far down the mountainside, the sound that Christmas was on its way. Sarah heard the bells and ran to her window. She was the first to see the

sleigh because her family’s small house was on the very outskirts of the village. She pressed her face close to the cold windowpane, her breath fogging it over. She wiped the glass clean enough to see through a small circle, and her heart quickened when she saw the horse and sleigh as Old Sam passed right in front of her with his wonderful cargo of Christmas trees. The trees in Sarah’s home had never been the largest in the village, but to her they were unquestionably the most beautiful in the world. Her father always said Christmas wasn’t complete without a tree, and she remembered with delight how he would make such a show of bringing in their Christmas tree each year. He was a man who lived life with joy, and he was never happier than when his family was gathered together around their tree. She remembered, too, how the tree always seemed to brighten their small home. Before putting on the homemade decorations, her family would sit and admire their tree just as it was, and her father would say how it reminded him of beauty and hope for a new beginning. Sarah’s heart swelled with joy as she thought about those happy days. But then, as the sleigh disappeared toward the center of the village and the sound of the bells faded into the cold night, she was brought back to the harsh reality that, for her family, times had changed. Sarah had always believed her father when he took her on his knee and told her that they were the richest family in the village. It was only as she grew older that she realized how terribly poor her family really was. For some years her father had not been well and was barely able to keep a steady job. Last Christmas, as a young lady of 9, she began to see things as they were. Her father had grown sicker and hadn’t worked since early summer. One night, when her parents thought she was asleep, Sarah heard her mother say to her father that they simply could not afford a Christmas tree that year. There was not even enough money to feed and clothe the children, and certainly not a penny to spare for anything so frivolous as a tree. Sarah’s mother was as practical as her father was hopeful. It was not that she loved her family any less. In fact, it was her intense love for her family that caused her to worry so much. That night, through a crack in the door, she saw her father put his arm around her mother and, in his usual cheerful way, comfort her. Sarah thought she heard him say something about a miracle, but that only seemed to make her mother cry more. Still, they did manage to have a tree that year. Yes, it was the smallest one ever, but Sarah’s father brought it home with such a show that it seemed to be the grandest yet. He told the family again of how important the Christmas tree was — a reminder of how something small and humble can bring joy and hope into the world. That night, Sarah saw tears in her mother’s eyes. It was to be the last Christmas the family would have with their father. In the early spring he

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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was overcome by his illness, and they buried him among the daffodils where the valley gently rises toward the mountains. That seemed like such a long time ago now, and yet there were times when Sarah still looked up expecting to see her father come through the door. She wondered what the first Christmas without him would be like. She was 10 now, and she knew her mother was depending on her to be grown up and brave. But her brother, John, who was only 5, still didn’t really understand that his father would not be home for Christmas. Their father had always managed to provide them both with a small toy at Christmas, and it hurt her to think of John’s disappointment because there would be nothing this year. Most of all, she couldn’t bring herself to accept that there would be no Christmas tree. Sarah had a blend of her mother’s practicality and her father’s belief in the impossible. Though her mother hadn’t mentioned it, Sarah knew she couldn’t afford to buy a Christmas tree this year. Sarah didn’t resent this. Her mother worked hard in the nice homes of the village to provide for her children. She knew that the money her mother made would barely be enough to see them through the long, cold winter. Still, her father’s side of Sarah would not let her give up. She believed he would have found a way. He would have continued to hope. Sarah’s school was at the other end of the village from her home, and the walk took her through the center of town, along the streets with delightful store windows, past the village square, and finally into the part of town with the grandest, loveliest homes. She always enjoyed the walk, but never so much as at Christmastime, when the stores were filled with wonderful gifts, the homes beautifully decorated and the village square alive with Old Sam’s freshly cut Christmas trees. On her way home from school, Sarah paused to look in the store windows at the toys, the lacy dresses, bright ribbons, jars of candy and baskets of fruit. For a moment, she allowed herself to dream of having such nice things, but quickly stopped, knowing there would be no toys or fancy dresses this year. Sarah did, however, have a way to surprise her brother. She had five pennies and she planned to buy some candy and fruit to put in John’s stocking. It was still four days until Christmas, and she decided to wait as long as she could in the hope that the prices might be lower and her pennies would buy more. When Sarah arrived in the square it was crowded with fine sleighs as the village families carefully inspected each tree to make sure they would have the right one for them. In a far corner, Old Sam sat on a log beside a small fire. He didn’t seem to notice or care what was going on around him. In one hand he held a carving knife and in the other a pine branch. A pile of wood shavings surrounded his feet. He rarely spoke to anyone, and only looked up from his whittling when someone was ready to buy their tree.

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Sarah felt as though she was in a fairyland, breathing in the fragrance of the trees as she walked between the rows. She inspected each tree with great care, as though she, too, was making the all-important decision of which one to take home. Finally, she made her decision. She selected the most beautiful tree in the square and, in her imagination, pretended to take it home to her family. She knew it was silly to dream, and yet somehow she believed it was possible until a family walked up and announced that the tree — her tree — was the one for them. She stood silently fighting back tears, and watched her tree being taken away. Before she realized it, an hour had passed and the tall pines were casting long shadows across the square. As Sarah began to turn for home, she suddenly had the feeling that someone was looking at her. She turned quickly, and her eyes met those of Old Sam. There was no expression on his face; he simply sat and looked at her through his gray eyes. She turned to see if there was someone behind her, but realized she was all alone. When she looked back at him, he had gone back to his whittling. It made her so self-conscious, she ran for home, nearly tripping over a small tree. It was so small that she hadn’t even noticed it before. And, as she glanced at it for the first time, she thought it looked rather pitiful and hardly could be called a Christmas tree at all. “What a silly-looking thing you are,” she said. And she raced all the way home. When she returned to the village square the following day after school, Sarah was surprised to find so many trees already sold, taken to homes throughout the village. Even so there were still many nice, freshly cut trees left, and Sarah inspected each with great care. Again she let her imagination wander back in time. She remembered how her father looked at her and how he seemed to delight in her excitement as she studied each tree. The dream seemed so real that, for a moment, Sarah thought she could feel her father’s gaze. But it was Old Sam who was looking at her. She shifted her eyes slowly and for a few seconds met the eyes of the old man sitting on the log. Sarah was certain she saw a brief smile. His weathered face behind the white beard seemed different that day, and Sarah had the feeling he was looking at her the same way her father once had. Old Sam sat silently for a moment and then, gesturing toward a tree some distance away, he said, “Have you looked at this one?” When she turned, Sarah saw the little tree that she had nearly tripped over the day before. Sarah’s mother had taught her to always tell the truth, but she didn’t want to hurt the old man’s feelings. It was simply not a proper Christmas tree. She stood there for a moment looking at the little tree and trying to think what to say. But the problem solved itself, for when she looked back, Old Sam had stepped away to help another customer. The following day was the last day of school before Christmas. There was the usual holiday excitement in the air as her class let out. Most of the children hurried home, anxious to be with their families and to enjoy their trees, look at the beautifully wrapped gifts and sample all those delicious things to eat. But Sarah went back to the village square. When she arrived, there were only two trees left — a medium-sized one and the funny looking little tree. The old man was talking to the last family in the square. Sarah wished with all her heart that the family would pick the little tree, though she realized how unlikely that was. Sure enough, they selected the larger one. She stood there as Old Sam took their money and put the tree in the family’s sleigh, and she watched them disappear down the snowy lane. Suddenly, Sarah realized that she was all alone with the old man and the last Christmas tree. Old Sam returned to his log by the fire and resumed his whittling, and she walked over to the little tree. For the first time, she looked closely at it. She still thought it was rather pitiful. It was so small, and

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the trunk was noticeably bent, and she wished the few little boughs were arranged better. Still, it was a real tree and it did have the same wonderful fragrance as the others, and she thought of how her father would have made it look grand by bringing it home with such a show. Sarah felt the five pennies in her coat pocket. Then she swallowed hard, mustered up all her courage and walked over to the old man. In her most adult, business-like tone, she asked, “How much is that one?” Old Sam looked up into her eyes and then over at the little tree. He seemed to study the tree for a long time, staring beyond it, as though his thoughts were far away from the village square. Then he blinked his eyes and cocked his head and asked, “What do you have?” “Five pennies, sir,” she replied. “That will do,” he said with a serious nod. It was everything she had. Sarah felt the coins in her pocket and tried to think which was more important for John — to have a gift on Christmas or to have a tree. It was such a hard decision, too hard for a 10-year-old girl. Finally she told Old Sam that she would have to go home and think it over. He gave no response, looked down and resumed his carving. Sarah was afraid she might have hurt the old man’s feelings and she stood there for a moment trying to think of what else to say. But it was getting late and she had to go home or her mother would worry. Sarah kept thinking about the old man as she walked home. After supper, she asked her mother if she knew anything about him. Her mother thought for a moment, remembering what her own parents told her once. “When Samuel Cross was a young man,” she began, “he and his wife lived here in the village. After many years of marriage, they had a child — a girl. She was a gentle child with beautifully delicate features, and she was loved by everyone in the village. But she was very small and frail and, because she was crippled, her father carried her wherever they went. He seemed to love doing this, since the child was the joy of his life. Then one winter, when she was about your age, Sarah, the little girl passed away. Her mother was so grief-stricken that she too died of a broken heart. Old Sam went up into the mountains and has lived there ever since, returning to the village only to sell his trees.” Sarah understood why the old man looked at her the way he did, for it was the same way her father once looked at her. At that very moment Sarah resolved that she should buy the tree. In fact, the more she thought about it the more it seemed the little tree had always been meant for her and John, and she wanted it more than any Christmas tree she could ever remember. She wanted to run back to the village square and buy it right then, but her mother told her it was too late and that she would have to wait until morning. That evening, Sarah made Christmas decorations out of pieces of paper and, as she fashioned each one, she thought of how lovely they were going to look on her tree. She thought of the happiness it would bring Old Sam to have someone share his love for the little tree. Sarah was so excited she had trouble falling asleep. When morning finally came, it was the day before Christmas. She was up at dawn and hurried to finish her chores. After a bowl of warm cereal and a glass of milk, Sarah was off for the village square. She ran most of the way and when she could run no more, she walked as fast as her legs would carry her. Her anticipation mounted as she reached the top of a hill where she could look down into the village. But, when she reached the summit, her heart sank like a great weight — the village square was empty. She stood motionless for a moment, then hurried down to the square, hoping upon hope. Maybe Old Sam had slept late and would be coming along soon with her tree. But what if someone else already bought it? She couldn’t bear to think of it. She stood in the snow all morning watching for Old Sam. By noon she realized he wasn’t coming. She wanted to hide someplace and cry, but knew that her father would have wanted her to be brave.

After a while, Sarah remembered that she still had her five pennies, so she left the square and went to the general store. Even though it was Christmas Eve, the money didn’t go as far as she had hoped. Still, she was able to buy a few peppermint sticks and an orange for John. And so, with her candy and fruit, Sarah went home. That night, their mother sat on the side of the bed in which both Sarah and John slept. She tried to remember how her husband used to tell the Christmas story every Christmas Eve. Sarah listened carefully and once again felt the warmth that the story always brought her, and she lay there for a while trying to be thankful for God’s gifts. But she was only a little girl and it was the first Christmas without her father, and the disappointment of the day still lay heavily upon her heart. She cried quietly so as not to wake John and soon fell asleep herself. Sarah was up early on Christmas morning. The world somehow looked different — more special — on Christmas day. So, while her mother and John were sleeping, she filled John’s stocking, then dressed and went to the front door to see how this day would look. Sarah opened the door and the morning sun bounced brightly off the snow. Her eyes burst wide open when she beheld a sight that took her breath away. There, in her front yard, on a beautiful blanket of new fallen snow stood a tree — her tree! Sarah wanted to scream for joy, but her heart was pounding so hard she could barely get her breath. As she began walking toward the tree, she saw that it was decorated with many delicate wooden carvings — dolls, toy soldiers, wagons, animals and on and on. Each was made of pine, and some looked like they had been freshly carved, while others seemed weathered, as though they had been collected over many years. On the bottom of each carving, were the initials S.C. Sarah was startled by a holler and turned to see John running toward the tree and her mother standing in the doorway. The young boy danced around the tree, looking at all the toys. He took a truck from one of the boughs and, when he saw the initials, he exclaimed with total conviction, “Santa Claus!” Sarah started to explain, but then saw her mother’s smile and heard her say, “Why, sure enough.” Many Christmases have since come and gone, and Sarah has had children and grandchildren of her own. Many Christmas trees have stood in her home. Some have been large and lovely, but none have ever been so beautiful nor stayed so dear to her heart as the little tree that taught her that true happiness does not come from things large and grand, but through humble gifts, given with love. PS Bruce Shields is a retired ophthalmologist who spent his career at Duke and Yale universities in patient care, education and research. He lives with his wife, Sharon, in Burlington, North Carolina.

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The Ornament & the Bell A lost son, a missing mother and how their wish of finding each other came true By Jim Moriarty

“Did you look for me at 23andMe?” Click. That’s all there was. The voice was uncertain, the accent German. John Gessner had just finished a photo assignment. A beautiful house, a farm, some dogs. Pictures of a good life. He sat in his car and listened on his cellphone. Then he listened again. It was the voice of someone he’d been looking for almost from the day he learned she existed. It took 15 minutes to hit a call back button, compressing 55 years into the first words a mother and son ever shared. And they talked. And they talked. And the years melted away. Gessner was born on the last day of January in 1963 at Misericordia Hospital in the Bronx, New York. After shuttling through a series of families, he was adopted before his second birthday by Fred and Stella Gessner. When he was 10, his adopted mother was diagnosed with cancer. The prognosis was dire. He learned he was adopted when one of his aunts showed him the family Bible. “I started thinking about her,” he says of his birth mother, “kind of like an escape hatch, almost. Self-preservation. When you’re 10 you need a mother. Well, there’s this other person out there.” As it turns out, Stella Gessner lived for another 10 years, a few months longer, in fact, than her husband. John’s adopted father was killed in a car accident by a drunk driver when John was 20. “Back in ’94 after my mother died, I wrote to the adoption agency,” Gessner says. The agency was the Catholic Home Bureau, and the details it supplied about his birth mother were opaque, at best. “In New York all the records are sealed. They gave me this non-identifying information which basically said she was from Germany, here on a work visa, and she had no means to take care of me. I signed up (with the agency) that if she ever contacted them and said she was looking for me, then they’d connect us.” Gessner consulted lawyers, too. “They said it’s incredibly expensive and there’s no guarantee.” It seemed like a dead end. Adelheid “Heidi” Koob sailed to America aboard the Berlin, arriving on the 21st of May, 1961. She was coming to visit her own mother, who had left warravaged Germany at the end of the Second World War, intent on beginning a new life. “My mother and her three new daughters and her new husband picked me up in New York,” says Heidi, now 80 and married to Arthur Strelick, a retired member of the U.S. diplomatic corps. The “new” family

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drove south to their home in Fort Lee, Virginia. “After 14 or 15 years, seeing her again was not the same. Something broke away. Where was she when I was sick? Where was she when I went to school? She was not there.” Heidi, who at 21 was already experienced managing hotels, didn’t want to stay in Virginia with her mother. She wanted to go back to New York. Then, one Saturday night on a date in Fort Lee, “I had a Coca-Cola and then I woke up the next day and I don’t know what happened.” She packed her suitcase and took a bus to New York. “Then I found out I was pregnant.” The information Gessner obtained from the adoption agency shined as little light on his biological father as it had his mother. “He was in the military and he already had a family,” he says. In New York, things went from murky to mysterious. Heidi, whose English skills were in the formative stage, got a job working at the Waldorf Astoria. As the time for her delivery approached, a friend at the Swedish embassy told her to go to Misericordia and advised her to pay cash. She delivered a 10-pound, 4-ounce baby at around 1:30 in the morning on Jan. 31. She had him baptized Karl Leo Koob in the hospital chapel on Feb. 2. She wouldn’t see him again for 55 years. “They said I was sick and had to stay in the hospital,” Gessner says. The young mother left the baby. “When I came back, they ask me for paper,” says Heidi. “I said, ‘What paper?’ Birth certificate. I don’t have any documents. ‘Did you register?’ I said, ‘No, I paid cash.’ That was it. There was no baby.” For months, the new mother frantically tried to find her son. Finally, in June of ’63, she went back to Germany and the months of searching turned into years. She was looking for Karl Leo Koob, but Karl Leo Koob was about to become John Gessner. She met Arthur Strelick, who attended Penn State University and worked for Pittsburgh Steel and NASA before joining the diplomatic corps, when he was a vice consul in Munich. In ’68 Heidi moved to Canada, using it as a base to hunt for her missing son. In 1969, Arthur proposed. As an alien attempting to wed a U.S. diplomat, Heidi was investigated by the FBI and the CIA. She told them everything, but there was no evidence of a child. Arthur was assigned to Sri Lanka, and they were married in ’69. Even he doubted his wife’s story. Their postings included Vietnam — Gessner’s half-sister, also named Heidi, was born in September of ’74 — then Norway and Egypt. After Cairo, they were in India for two years, then Malta. Heidi, their daughter, was showing great promise as a dancer, eventually having a 14-year career with the ballet company in Ulm, Germany. She now teaches dance at Adelphi University in Garden City, New York. At every posting, Heidi Strelick, the mother, paid particular attention to the children, to the orphanages. Buddhist. Catholic. It didn’t matter. She gave them food. She gave them clothes. “I think I carried a guilt with me,” she says, “to make me so strong to take care of lost children, adopted children.” PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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After Malta, the Strelicks were in Brazil. After Brazil it was Bonn, Germany. After Bonn it was Suriname. “We visit the Indians,” says Gessner’s mother. “I took hundreds of pictures of the Indians. I show it to them. They cried. They did like a cat. They turned it around, like a cat looks behind the mirror. I took pictures of their babies. They give me some gifts and I want to pay them. No, they want my flip-flops. The Hollander, they come to Suriname to paint. The color, light, people. It is heaven for artists.” Next was Athens, Greece. Then back to America and, eventually, retirement. Gessner’s mother became a collector of antique jewelry. Arthur joined her in the pursuit, specializing in Russian watches. Then came 23andMe and its DNA match. “I get a message around the end of September,” says Heidi. “Really strange. How tall is your father? How tall is your mother? How tall are you? How much do you weigh? What color are your eyes? On the 6th of October, it says you have three messages. I go in there. I fainted. It’s all red, from the top to the bottom. All red. I clicked further. ‘I’m your son. I’ve been looking for you all my life.’ I didn’t answer right away. You get hot and cold.” John Gessner, son, and Heidi Strelick, mother, investigated one another online. “It took me about a month. A lot of sleepless nights,” says Gessner. “I put my website in there. I just wanted her to know that it wasn’t a scam. I wanted her to know that I was a good person. That’s all I really ever expected.” After Gessner returned that first call from a parking lot, they spoke on the phone every day, often for an hour or two at a time. John went to the Strelicks’ home in Delaware for Christmas and returned in January for his birthday — the second one they’d spent together. “How does it feel? I cannot describe it,” says his mother. “I cannot write it. It’s in here.” She puts her hand on her chest. “All my life, taking care of babies, taking care of children and I prayed. And I’m still alive and I see the life I’ve given. I got my son. I don’t need much more anymore. I see him alive and healthy.” Gessner fashioned a Christmas ornament, the gooey kind you bake in an oven, and every year he’d put it on his tree and make a wish that somehow he would find his mother. In far-flung corners of the globe, his mother did the same, hanging a tiny bell given to her by her father, making the same wish, that she would find the son she’d lost. After their first Christmas together, the silver bell fell off the tree and broke. It didn’t need repair. The mending had been done. PS

Heidi Strelick with brother, John 98

Jim Moriarty is the senior editor at PineStraw and can be reached at jjmpinestraw@gmail.com.

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The Joy of Christmas Past Once upon a time, in a little village not so very far away called Pinehurst, the treetops glistened and the children listened. But, come on, let’s be honest, a clown playing an accordion at a Christmas party would scare the bejesus out of us, too. So, with Santa Claus to the rescue, here’s a quick tour of the good times in the good old days.

Photographs from the Tufts Archives

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Decking the Halls A Pinehurst Christmas comes alive

By Deborah Salomon • Photographs by John Koob Gessner

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ultigenerational families from all over flock to Pinehurst for a pictureperfect Christmas. At the Carolina Hotel they expect the best accommodations, the best food, hopefully a day or two of golf weather and, as a backdrop, the best decorations: That’s a big order for recreation director Josh Lack and his crew of five women, who work 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. every day for three weeks: It all starts with trees, Some short and some tall Decked out, so to please The guests, one and all. Lack estimates 50,000 light bulbs, inside and out, on wreaths, garlands and 17 trees, including Queen of the South, the main lobby ceiling-scraper. Ribbons and lights Twine around their green boughs Creating some sights Eliciting “Wows.”

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Trees and greenery are artificial, therefore reusable. Practicality trumps fragrance. Poinsettias peek from behind every column A nutcracker proudly stands guard. His face is a blend of happy and solemn Admiring him will not be hard. In fact, an entire tree is hung with nutcrackers in many costumes. A special tree is devoted to birds Cardinals, of course, center stage. Flamingoes would be completely absurd Although they’re a lawn décor rage. Another dedicated tree, new this year, celebrates the Twelve Days of Christmas. Rudolph, poor soul, got no invitation, Management won’t budge an inch. And yet, they showed no consternation In saying “Y’all come” to the Grinch. Well, maybe . . . but nothing’s Grinchy about a Pinehurst Noel. The gingerbread village, a holiday prize Decorated with candies and treats. The hotel has been shrunk to miniature size Too bad we can look . . . but not eat. PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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Tiramisu goes down easier. Outside, Mother Nature, oh please bring us snow Like you did in one nine, ninety-five. A day is enough, then make it go So the duffers’ eighteen will survive. However, for those so inclined, a snow golf championship is held annually in Austria. Beyond decorations Chef Santa has plans For potatoes, some sweet, others savory, For turkey and roast beef, Yule logs and flans, For cranberry chutney and grav-ery. Christmas buffet at the Carolina deserves its own carol. For rolls fresh and hot, dripping with butter For pies filled with pecans and mincemeat For wassail whose praises the grown-ups shall utter Imbibing this once-a-year treat. Eggnog . . . anyone? Carols, of course, will waft through the air Classics plus songs, genre “jolly.” Crosby and Como just might be there But Chipmunks would be utter folly.

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Where is Eartha Kitt when you really need her? Beyond the hotel the village awaits Its shops overflowing with cheer. Your honey, that cashmere sweater she rates And for you, at Dugan’s, a beer. Or, trolley back to a toddy at the Ryder Cup Lounge. Oh Christmas, sweet Christmas, the chapel bells peal The candles burn sparkly and bright, Your spirit is something participants feel As they stroll through the dark chilly night . . . And into a lobby where, for the next few weeks, not even Carolina blue outranks red, white and green. OK, Santa. Your turn. PS

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A L M A N A C

December n By Ash Alder

December is a treasure trove of fragrance and memory. One whiff of cinnamon, for instance, and I’m back in Grammy’s kitchen, watching the birds through the sunny window as cinnamon sticks simmer on the stovetop. “Is that pesky critter back?” she asks, squinting as she scans the front yard, feeders swinging like pendulums. “Oh, for Pete’s sake,” she says, watching a plump gray squirrel balance between a crape myrtle branch and a hanging tray like some kind of clumsy acrobat. “Hand me my squirt gun, would you?” Incense fumes take me back further still: to the children’s Nativity play at Catholic Mass, frankincense and myrrh wafting up toward the vaulted ceiling as toddlers slink from laps to kneelers, climb from kneelers to creaky wooden pews. As the organist fires up “Joy to the World,” all I can see is Christmas dinner (sliced ham, soft rolls, green beans, potato gratin), a smorgasbord of cookies, and the ocean of neatly wrapped presents to follow. And then — yes, there it is — the scent of Fraser fir. I must have been 11 when my folks brought home that first real tree. Until that day, unfurling and shaping the plastic branches of our tired yet faithful artificial tree was, for me, the highlight of the holidays. But once the entire house smelled like a lush woodland forest, I was forever transformed. Although I had neither the words nor the reference for it then, now I might compare the experience to some kind of awakening — like falling in love. All I knew for sure was this: If I had any say in the matter, my days of plastic trees were done. Hot chocolate, citrus, fire, peppermint bark, homemade pie . . . This aromatic month, no telling what delightful memories might come to light.

Winterberry Magic

Want to draw more birds to your backyard this and future winters? Just add berries. Audubon North Carolina’s Bird Friendly Communities Initiative dubbed the winterberry “irresistible” to wood thrushes, gray catbirds, Eastern bluebirds, American robins, cedar waxwings and woodpeckers. And this native plant just so happens to thrive in the mountains, piedmont and coastal plain. Like its iconic cousin the American holly, winterberry plants are either male or female. This means you’ll need to plant at least two-for-one to produce fruit. The winterberry flowers from April to June, and while it loses its leaves in the autumn (unlike the holly), all the better for witnessing its colorful berries, which it bears from August through December. You’ll get a better glimpse of the visiting birds that way, too. Other plants with brilliant berries: beautyberry, deciduous hollies, Washington hawthorn.

I heard a bird sing In the dark of December, A magical thing, And sweet to remember: “We are nearer to spring Than we were in September.”

— Oliver Herford, “Hope,” 1914

The Real Thing

Spruce, pine or fir, evergreen trees have long been used to celebrate winter festivals — pagan, Christian or otherwise. If you’re considering a living tree for the house and landscape this year, you’ll want to keep it outside for as long as possible (read: It won’t be happy indoors for more than 14 days). Although their needles aren’t as soft as the iconic fir, white pines thrive in North Carolina. Rosemary “trees” are another great option. Just be mindful not to “shock” them with too-cold temperatures if you snag one from a local nursery. The shorter their journey from cozy greenhouse to warm home, the better.

December Sky Watch

This month, love is in the night sky. On Saturday, Dec. 28, two days after an annular solar eclipse not visible from here (try Saudi Arabia, southern India or parts of Indonesia), a crescent moon and Venus will “kiss” in the southwestern horizon at 8:33 p.m. National Geographic named it one of the top sky-watching events of 2019. Take their cue. Mistletoe is everywhere. You know what to do.

Stocking Stuffers for Your Favorite Gardener • Snapdragon seeds • Pruning shears • Natural twine • Gardeners hand cream • Winter Poems, by Barbara Rogasky

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Although conscientious effort is made to provide accurate and up-to-date information, all events are subject to change and errors can occur! Please call to verify times, costs, status and location before planning or attending an event. BOOKWORMS BOOKCLUB. Are you in grade K–5 and want to join a book club? Find the Bookworms display in the library to take home the book of the month, pick up your discussion questions and grab some activities. When you have finished reading the book, fill out the book review to post on the library’s wall. This month’s book is The Little Prince. Can’t read yet? Read along with a grown-up. Southern Pines Public Library, 170 W. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-8235. BOOK SALES. 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Monday-Saturday. Monthly sale — Christmas and holiday books are buy one, get one free, some exclusions apply. Given Book Shop, 95 Cherokee Road, Pinehurst. Info: (910) 5854820 or 295-7002. JOY OF ART STUDIO. Holiday Arts begins on Dec. 7 and is an after-school program. It develops art skills for all ages including drawing, painting, mixed media, crafts and more. The studio also offers home school art history, teen studio painting, mixed-media

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medley for women, Artist’s Way group and Celebrate Your Creative Elf Art Week. Book your holiday art party for groups or birthdays with private lessons in art skills. Classes are held at Joy of Art Studio, 139 E. Pennsylvania Ave., Suite B, Southern Pines. Info: (910) 528-7283 or email joyof_art@msn.com or Facebook link www.facebook.com/Joyscreativespace/for a complete list of events this month. Sunday, December 1 ART EXHIBIT. 12 - 3 p.m. The 25th annual Art Exhibit and Sale is open to the public through Dec. 20. Artists League of the Sandhills, 129 Exchange St., Aberdeen. Info: (910) 944-3979 or www.artistleague.org. BALLET PERFORMANCE. 2 p.m. Gary Taylor Dance returns with a performance of Gary Taylor’s Nutcracker. Tickets range from $22 - $30. Bradshaw Performing Arts Center, Owens Auditorium, Sandhills Community College, 3395 Airport Road, Pinehurst. Info and tickets: www.taylordance.org. WRITING GROUP. 3 p.m. Interested in creating fiction, nonfiction, poetry or comics? Connect with other writers and artists, chat about your craft and get feedback on your work. All levels are welcome. Southern Pines Public Library, 170 W. Connecticut

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Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-8235 or www. sppl.net. CHRISTMAS CRAFTS. 3 p.m. Get in the holiday mood by making some decorations that benefit nature. Wood ornaments made from invasive species, peanut butter birdseed pine cones and popcorn garland will help you decorate your home while helping out the wildlife. Suitable for all ages. RSVP not mandatory, but recommended. Weymouth Woods-Sandhills Nature Preserve, 1024 Fort Bragg Road, Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-2167 or www.ncparks.gov. LIVE RADIO PLAY. 5 p.m. It’s A Wonderful Life. Sponsored by McClain Drug. Sunrise Theater, 244 N.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-3611 or www.sunrisetheater.com. WREATH MAKING. Come out to a special event with The Sway and make some holiday wreaths. Southern Pines Brewing Company, 565 Air Tool Drive, Suite E, Southern Pines. Info: www.southernpinesbrewing.com. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com. Tuesday, December 3 PIANO CONCERT. 7 p.m. Dr. Amanda Virelles and Dr. Kristina Henckel will present a piano duo concert

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CA L E N DA R featuring works by Mozart, Rachmaninov, Piazzolla and Dvor̂ák. Free and open to the public. Bradshaw Performing Arts Center, Owens Auditorium, Sandhills Community College, 3395 Airport Road, Southern Pines. Wednesday, December 4 GREENERY WORKSHOP. 10 a.m. - 12 p.m. Maggie Smith of Maggie’s Farm Designs will host a workshop teaching you how to make a holiday arrangement. Cost is $30 for Sandhills Horticultural Society Members and $40 for non-members. Space limited to 24 people. Sign up by Dec. 1. Ball Visitors Center, Sandhills Community College, 3395 Airport Road, Southern Pines. Info: (910) 695-3882 or email landscapegardening@sandhills.edu. FOOD TRUCK. 5 p.m. Meat & Greek Food Truck. They will also be at Southern Pines Brewing Company on Dec. 11 and 18 at 5 p.m. Southern Pines Brewing Company, 565 Air Tool Drive, Suite E, Southern Pines. Info: www.southernpinesbrewing.com. FACULTY RECITAL. 7 p.m. SCC music faculty and virtuoso pianist Kristina Henckel will perform a solo piano recital featuring the works of Beethoven, Chopin, Novák and Ježek. Free and open to the public. Bradshaw Performing Arts Center, Owens Auditorium, Sandhills Community College, 3395 Airport Road, Southern Pines. FAMILY MOVIE NIGHT. 7 p.m. The Sly Fox will be screening the movie Elf. Prizes will be offered for the best-dressed elf. Reservations required. The Sly Fox Pub, 795 S.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. Info: www. theslyfoxpub.com. Thursday, December 5 OPEN HOUSE. 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Come enjoy the Christmas on Connecticut Open House. There is a $5 entry fee at the door. The open house continues on Dec. 6 from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. and Dec. 7 from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. Weymouth Center for Arts & Humanities, 555 E. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 6926261 or weymouthcenter.org. FOOD TRUCK. 4 p.m. Pink Pig BBQ & Shrimp Food Truck. They will also be at Southern Pines Brewing Company on Dec. 12, 19 and 26 at 4 p.m. Southern Pines Brewing Company, 565 Air Tool Drive, Suite E, Southern Pines. Info: www.southernpinesbrewing.com. ABERDEEN TREE LIGHTING. 6:15 - 7:30 p.m. Witness the lighting of the Christmas tree and the arrival of Santa. There will also be light refreshments and music. The Depot in downtown Aberdeen, 100 E. Main St., Aberdeen. Info: (910) 944-7275. TAPAS AND TEMPRANILLOS. 6:30 - 7:30 p.m. Enjoy three small plates and three Spanish wines. Cost: $30. Elliott’s on Linden, 905 Linden Road, Suite A, Pinehurst. Info: (910) 215-0775 or www.elliottsonlinden.com. THE ROOSTER’S WIFE. 6:46 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m. Jonathan Byrd and The Pickup Cowboys. Poplar

Knight Spot, 114 Knight St., Aberdeen. Info: (910) 944-7502 or www.theroosterswife.org. Tickets: www. ticketmesandhills.com. RUTH PAULEY LECTURE SERIES. 7 p.m. Michael Mann will present “Leaving the Madhouse: The Path to Climate Action.” Bradshaw Performing Arts Center, Sandhills Community College, 3395 Airport Road, Southern Pines. Info: www.ruthpauley.org. Friday, December 6 POT LUCK LUNCHEON. 12 p.m. Seniors 55 and older can participate in a free potluck lunch. Bring a small dish and enjoy great food and fellowship. Ten games of bingo will follow the lunch with prizes for winners. Cost: $2 for Southern Pines residents; $4 non-residents. Douglass Community Center, 1185 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376 or www.southernpines.net/136/ Recreation-Parks. FOOD TRUCK. 5 p.m. Bulkogi Food Truck. They will also be at Southern Pines Brewing Company on Dec. 13 and 20 at 5 p.m. Southern Pines Brewing Company, 565 Air Tool Drive, Suite E, Southern Pines. Info: www.southernpinesbrewing.com. TREE LIGHTING. 5 - 7:30 p.m. Watch the Village of Pinehurst come alive with holiday spirit at the Christmas Tree Lighting. There will be music, crafts, Santa and more. The lighting of the tree will be at 6:30 p.m. Tufts Memorial Park, 1 Village Green Road W., Pinehurst. Info: www.vopnc.org. CANDY CANE HUNT. 5:30 p.m. There will be activities for kids ages 4 - 10 including crafts, games, photos with Santa and the Flashlight Candy Cane Hunt. Memorial Park, 160 Memorial Park Court, Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. THEATER. 7 p.m. Cape Fear Regional Theatre will be presenting The Best Christmas Pageant Ever. Performances run through Dec. 22 and times and tickets can be found on the website. Cape Fear Regional Theatre, 1209 Hay St., Fayetteville. Info: www.cfrt. org/project/no-child/. THEATER PRODUCTION. 7:30 p.m. Come enjoy a performance of A Christmas Carol. There will also be performances on Dec. 7, 13 and 14 at 7:30 p.m. and Dec. 8 and 15 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $15 - $20. The Encore Center, 160 E. New Hampshire Ave., Southern Pines. Info and tickets: www.encorecenter.net. Saturday, December 7 REINDEER FUN RUN. 8 a.m. - 12 p.m. The 5K Reindeer Fun Run curves through downtown Aberdeen and is an event made for everyone. All proceeds go to the Boys & Girls Club of the Sandhills. Downtown Aberdeen, 100 E. Main St., Aberdeen. Info: (910) 693-3045 or www.reindeerfunrun.com. JR. FLEA MARKET. 9 - 11 a.m. Young business people ages 7-16 will put their bargaining skills to the test as they sell their handmade crafts, toys, clothes and more. Booth spaces are $5 for residents of Southern

Pines and $10 for non-residents. Downtown Park, Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. JAZZ ON THE RAILS. 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Join Three Rivers Land Trust to indulge in the history of a bygone era as you walk through restored 1900s train cars while supporting historic preservation and land conservation in the Piedmont and Sandhills. There will be a jazz band, specialty drinks and food. Pinehurst No. 1, 1 Carolina Vista Drive, Pinehurst. Info and tickets: www.threeriverslandtrust.org/jotr. KIDS PROGRAM. 10 a.m. - 12 p.m. Learn about different books, characters and activities to read and do this winter and make a craft. Bring a friend and sign up for a free library card. This event is free and open to the public. Given Memorial Library and Tufts Archives, 150 Cherokee Road, Pinehurst. Info: www.giventufts.org. ORNAMENT SALE. 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. More than 2,500 handcrafted ornaments will be available during the Holiday Ornament Sale at STARworks Gallery. STARworks, 100 Russell Drive, Star. Info: (910) 4289001 or www.starworksnc.org. HOLIDAY PARADE. 11 a.m. Enjoy local marching bands, activities, a Santa appearance and more. Downtown Park, Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. FOOD TRUCK. 12 - 6 p.m. Fully Loaded Fritters Food Truck. Southern Pines Brewing Company, 565 Air Tool Drive, Suite E, Southern Pines. Info: www. southernpinesbrewing.com. MOVIE. 4 p.m. Paddington. This showing is in celebration of Weymouth Center’s Teddy Bear Tea. Sunrise Theater, 244 N.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-3611 or www.sunrisetheater.com. COLONIAL CANDLELIGHT TOUR. 5 - 8 p.m. Tour through the historic Alston House and enjoy warm cider and holiday carols. House in the Horseshoe, 288 Alston House Road, Sanford. Info: (910) 947-2051 or www.historicsites.nc.gov. HOLIDAY CONCERT. 7 - 9 p.m. Moore Philharmonic Orchestra presents their holiday concert. Admission is free. BPAC at Sandhills Community College, 3395 Airport Road, Pinehurst. Info: (910) 9443452 or www.mporchestra.com. FABULOUS 40 GALA. 7 - 11 p.m. Celebrate 40 years with Weymouth Center at a Dine and Dance Gala. Black tie optional, military dress or wear a 1940s costume. Live music by John Hatcher and Friends Quintet. Catering by Elliott’s on Linden. Weymouth Center, 555 E. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com. Sunday, December 8 TEA TIME ON THE TRAIN. 10 a.m. - 12 p.m. Support the yearly Sandhills Woman’s Exchange fundraiser on the refurbished Aberdeen Carolina & Western Railroad train parked near the Pinehurst Resort on Highway 5. Hot tea and foods will be served by historically dressed waitresses throughout the three special rail cars. Entertainment will feature Hollis

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CA L E N DA R Carbrey. Tickets are $75. Pinehurst Resort, Highway 5, Pinehurst. Info and tickets: (910) 295-4677 or www. sandhillswe.org. MAKER’S HOLIDAY MARKET. 12 - 5 p.m. Come shop from local artisans. There will also be a wrapping station, a raffle benefiting Roots and Wings Foster Closet and refreshments. 305 Trackside, 305 N.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com.

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OPEN HOUSE. 1 - 4 p.m. Celebrate Christmas the old-fashioned way by visiting the Bryant House and McLendon Cabin, which will be adorned for the holidays. Homemade cookies and hot cider will be served, and there will be live music by Sharon McDonald and David McDonald. The Union Pines High School orchestra will play a medley of holiday tunes. Free and open to the public. Bryant House, 3361 Mount Carmel Road, Carthage. Info and registration: (910) 692-2051 or email info@moorehistory.com. TOUR OF HOMES. 1 - 5 p.m. Tour gorgeous homes decked out in holiday finery during the Episcopal Day School Candlelight Tour of Homes. Episcopal Day School, 340 E. Massachusetts Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-3492 or www.episcopalday.org. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com. TEDDY BEAR TEA. 2 - 4 p.m. Join the Women of Weymouth and Katharine L. Boyd Library for stories and poems about teddy bears. Children can play bingo, decorate cookies, sing along to holiday songs and have teatime treats. For children ages 4 and older, accompanied by an adult. Cost is $15. Reserve your spot in advance. Weymouth Center, 555 E. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com. FIRE HISTORY METHODS. 3 p.m. Join researcher Monica Rother of UNCW for a presentation on tree-ring methods used to determine the fire history in longleaf pine forests and the project currently underway at Weymouth Woods. Free and open to the public. Weymouth Woods-Sandhills Nature Preserve, 1024 Fort Bragg Road, Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-2167 or www.ncparks.gov. EXPLORATIONS. 3 p.m. The library will host a technology-themed explorations event about “Cutting the Cord.” Learn about streaming services and devices needed to cut the cord with cable services. Southern Pines Public Library, 170 W. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-8235 or www.sppl.net.

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WREATH MAKING. Come out to a special event with The Sway and make some holiday wreaths. Southern Pines Brewing Company, 565 Air Tool Drive, Suite E, Southern Pines. Info: www.southernpinesbrewing.com. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com. MOVIE. 4 p.m. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. Sponsored by Swank Coffee Shoppe. Sunrise Theater, 244 N.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-3611 or www.sunrisetheater.com. HOLIDAY CONCERT. 4 p.m. The Sandhills Community College music faculty and students will

present a holiday concert featuring a blend of old and new that is sure to inspire the spirit. Join us to celebrate what is truly the most wonderful time of the year. Free and open to the public. Bradshaw Performing Arts Center, Owens Auditorium, Sandhills Community College, 3395 Airport Road, Southern Pines. THE ROOSTER’S WIFE. 6:46 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m. Keenan McKenzie and The Riffers. Poplar Knight Spot, 114 Knight St., Aberdeen. Info: (910) 944-7502 or www.theroosterswife.org. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com. Monday, December 9 HOLIDAY PUPPET SHOW. 5:30 p.m. Children of all ages and families can enjoy holiday songs, a puppet show and an ornament making session. Children are invited to wear their pajamas. Southern Pines Public Library, 170 W. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-8235 or www.sppl.net. Tuesday, December 10 ADULT STORYTIME. 12 p.m. Take a break from your day and join us for a story time designed for adults. Bring your lunch and be transported with short stories. Audrey Moriarty will read some of her favorites. This event is free and open to the public. Given Memorial Library and Tufts Archives, 150 Cherokee Road, Pinehurst. Info: www.giventufts.org. Wednesday, December 11 BABIES, SONGS AND READ ALONGS. 9:45 10:15 a.m. Join us for a new library program for ages 0 - 3. We will combine simple stories, music and movement to engage and entertain the little bookworms. Limited seating. Registration required. Free and open to the public. Given Memorial Library and Tufts Archives, 150 Cherokee Road, Pinehurst. Info: www.giventufts.org. Sign up with www.ticketmesandhills.com. CHRISTMAS BEER TASTING. 6:30 p.m. Enjoy three Christmas beers paired with three yuletide bites. Cost: $20. The Sly Fox Pub, 795 S.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. Info: www.theslyfoxpub.com. Thursday, December 12 SENIORS TRIP. 11 a.m. Seniors 55 and older can join Southern Pines Recreation & Parks to travel to Sanford to experience the Christmas Classic, Away in the Basement. Lunch at Mrs. Lacy’s Magnolia before the show. Cost: $26 for Southern Pines residents; $52 for non-residents. Bus will depart at 11 a.m. from the Campbell House Playground parking lot and return by 5 p.m. Campbell House Playground, 482 E. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. CHRISTMAS BANQUET. 6:30 p.m. Celebrate “A Night of Hope” with the Adult & Teen Challenge of Sandhills, N.C. Enjoy a delicious dinner with music and testimonies. Cost is $15 per person. Info and reservations: (910) 947-2944.

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CA L E N DA R READ BETWEEN THE PINES. 5:30 p.m. Join the Southern Pines Pubic Library’s newest book club for adults to discuss amazing books. This month’s book is Little Deaths by Emma Flint. Southern Pines Fire Station #2, intersection of Waynor Road and N.C. 22, Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-8235 or www.sppl.net. EVENING OF BEAUTY. 6 - 7:30 p.m. Join Dr. Jeff Kilpatrick, Dr. Russell Stokes and esthetician Hannah Parbst for an evening of beauty benefiting BackPack Pals. There will be live demonstrations and silent auctions. Pinehurst Surgical Clinic, 5 FirstVillage Drive, Pinehurst. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com. THE ROOSTER’S WIFE. 6:46 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m. Newberry and Verch. Poplar Knight Spot, 114 Knight St., Aberdeen. Info: (910) 944-7502 or www. theroosterswife.org. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com. THE CHRISTMAS STORY DINNER. All night. Elliott’s brings you the Chop Suey Palace Christmas tradition of Peking duck and all the trimmings. Cost: $38. Elliott’s on Linden, 905 Linden Road, Suite A, Pinehurst. Info: (910) 215-0775 or www.elliottsonlinden.com. Friday, December 13 GINGERBREAD BEAR STORY WALK. 10 a.m. Find out what happens to an over-confident gingerbread cookie as we read a book along a 0.3-mile trail. There will be a tasty treat waiting at the end of the story. Geared toward 3 – 5-year-olds to do with their parents. Free and open to the public. Weymouth Woods-Sandhills Nature Preserve, 1024 Fort Bragg Road, Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-2167 or www. ncparks.gov. SENIORS TRIP. 11:30 a.m. Seniors 55 and older can join Southern Pines Recreation & Parks for lunch at Midway Grill in Carthage. Then head to the Southern Supreme Fruitcake Factory for holiday snacks and gifts. Cost: $3 for Southern Pines residents; $6 for non-residents. Bus will depart at 11:30 a.m. from the Campbell House Playground parking lot and return by 4 p.m. Campbell House Playground, 482 E. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. JAM BY THE CANS. 6 -10 p.m. Come enjoy live music and beers. Bulkogi Food Truck will be there as well. Southern Pines Brewing Company, 565 Air Tool Drive, Suite E, Southern Pines. Tickets: www. eventbrite.com. THEATER PRODUCTION. 7 - 9 p.m. Image Youth Theater presents Rent. There will also be another performance on Dec. 14 from 2 - 4 p.m. Hannah Theater Center, 3300 Airport Road, Southern Pines. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com. Saturday, December 14 ART CLASS. 9:30 - 11:30 a.m. Create a treasured holiday ornament. Class is for children ages 9 - 17. There will be a second class for children ages 5 - 8 from 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Ellen Burke is the instructor. Cost is $20 for ages 9 - 17 and $10 for ages 5 - 8 including all materials. Hollyhocks Art Gallery,

905 Linden Road, Pinehurst. Info: (603) 966-6567 or exploringartellen3@gmail.com. ARTS AND CRAFTS SHOW. 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Come out and help support your local artists during the Holiday Shoppe Christmas Arts & Craft Show. Over 45 artists and craftsmen from across the state show and sell their latest works. National Guard Armory, 500 Morganton Road, Southern Pines. Info: (910) 528-7052. STEAM. 11 a.m. Craft tables will be out all day. At 11 a.m. join the library staff for ornament construction. This program is for children kindergarten through fifth grade. Southern Pines Public Library, 170 W. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 6928235 or www.sppl.net. SECOND SATURDAY. 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. This month’s celebrations will be about the holiday season and will benefit Toys for Tots, Salvation Army and the Moore County Free Clinic. The Heritage Flag Company, 230 S. Bennett St., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 725-1540 or www.theheritageflag.com/second-saturday/. FOOD TRUCK. 12 - 6 p.m. Cousins Maine Lobster Food Truck. Axes & X’s will also be there for some axe throwing. Southern Pines Brewing Company, 565 Air Tool Drive, Suite E, Southern Pines. Info: www. southernpinesbrewing.com. OPEN HOUSE. 1 - 4 p.m. Celebrate Christmas with an open house at the Shaw House, the Garner House and the Sanders Cabin. Shaw House, corner of Morganton Road and Broad St., Southern Pines. Info and registration: (910) 692-2051, email info@moorehistory.com or visit www.moorehistory.com. OLD FASHIONED CHRISTMAS. 1 - 5 p.m. Enjoy the farmhouse at Malcolm Blue Farm decorated for the season. There will be music, refreshments and kids activities. Malcolm Blue Farm, 1177 Bethesda Road, Aberdeen. Info: (910) 944-7275. MOVIE. 4 p.m. Love Actually. Sunrise Theater, 244 N.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-3611 or www.sunrisetheater.com. DECEMBER DANCE. 6:30 p.m. Join us for an evening of dancing at the Elks Lodge. Free dance lesson at 7 p.m. Dance until 9:30 p.m. Admission is $10. Carolina Pines Chapter of USA Dance. Southern Pines Elks Lodge, 280 Country Club Circle, Southern Pines. Info: (910) 331-9965. THEATER PRODUCTION. 7 - 8 p.m. Image Youth Theater presents Elf the Musical Jr. Performed by the second through sixth grade cast. There will also be another performance on Dec. 15 from 2:30 - 3:30 p.m. Hannah Theater Center, 3300 Airport Road, Southern Pines. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com. Sunday, December 15 ENGLISH CARVERY. 11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. Enjoy a carvery of our traditional Sunday roast. Cost: $21.95. The Sly Fox Pub, 795 S.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. Info: www.theslyfoxpub.com.

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CA L E N DA R BOLSHOI BALLET. 1 p.m. The Nutcracker. Enjoy a timeless holiday classic accompanied by Tchaikovsky’s score. Sunrise Theater, 244 N.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-3611 or www.sunrisetheater.com. FAMILY TALES. 3 p.m. Children ages 3 through third grade and their families can enjoy stories and activities that foster a love of books and reading as well as social-emotional development. Capacity is limited to 25 children and their caregivers per session, and checkin with a valid Southern Pines Public Library card is required. Southern Pines Fire Station #2, intersection of Waynor Road and N.C. 22, Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-8235 or www.sppl.net. WINTER BIRD WALK. 3 p.m. Learn what feathered friends we might find this time of year on a 1.5-mile hike. Free and open to the public. Weymouth Woods-Sandhills Nature Preserve, 1024 Fort Bragg Road, Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-2167 or www.ncparks.gov. THE ROOSTER’S WIFE. 6:46 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m. Amanda Anne Platt and The Honeycutters. Poplar Knight Spot, 114 Knight St., Aberdeen. Info: (910) 944-7502 or www.theroosterswife.org. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com. HOLIDAY CONCERT. 7 - 9 p.m. The Moore County Choral Society will perform a Merry and Bright concert. Bradshaw Performing Arts Center, Owens Auditorium, 3395 Airport Road, Pinehurst. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com.

WINTER READING CHALLENGE. The library encourages everyone to read through the school winter break. Log the books you read between Dec. 15 and Jan. 31 on the library’s Beanstack app or a paper log. Southern Pines Public Library, 170 W. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-8235 or www. sppl.net. Tuesday, December 17 JAMES BOYD BOOK CLUB. 2 - 3:30 p.m. This month’s book is A New Voyage to Carolina, by John Lawson. Free and open to the public. Weymouth Center for Arts & Humanities, 555 E. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-6261 or weymouthcenter.org. LIT WITS. 5:30 p.m. Join the library’s teen book club for 11- 15-year-olds. You can check out your copy of this month’s book, All’s Faire in Middle School, at the library from Dec. 1 through Dec. 16. Southern Pines Public Library, 170 W. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-8235 or www.sppl.net. Wednesday, December 18 HOLIDAY PRODUCTION. 7 - 9 p.m. The Uprising Theatre Company presents Dickens and His Christmas Carol: An Original Take on a Timeless Tale. There will also be performances on Dec. 19 and 20 from 7 - 9 p.m. The Village Chapel, 10 Azalea Road, Pinehurst. Info and tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com.

Thursday, December 19 MOVIE. 6 p.m. The Polar Express. Free event. Sponsored by Murphy Insurance. Sunrise Theater, 244 N.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 6923611 or www.sunrisetheater.com. THE ROOSTER’S WIFE. 6:46 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m. Open mic with The Parsons. Poplar Knight Spot, 114 Knight St., Aberdeen. Info: (910) 944-7502 or www.theroosterswife.org. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com. Saturday, December 21 CRAFT DAY. Stop in the library anytime during the day for this self-led program featuring Holiday Mayhem. Southern Pines Public Library, 170 W. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 6928235 or www.sppl.net. SPEAKEASY CELEBRATION. 8 p.m. - 12 a.m. Enjoy a night of drinks, entertainment and food. Chirba Chirba Food Truck will be there from 12 - 6 p.m. Southern Pines Brewing Company, 565 Air Tool Drive, Suite E, Southern Pines. Tickets: www. eventbrite.com. CHRISTMAS CONCERT. 2:30 p.m. Come enjoy the Murphy Family Christmas Concert, a Sunrise tradition with performances by a local family. Sponsored by Chapman’s Food and Spirits. Sunrise Theater, 244 N.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-3611 or www.sunrisetheater.com.

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December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


CA L E N DA R Sunday, December 22

UPCOMING EVENTS

HOLIDAY HIKE. 3 p.m. Get ready for Christmas with a 1.5-mile holiday-themed hike while we search for mistletoe and boughs of holly. Free and open to the public. Weymouth Woods-Sandhills Nature Preserve, 1024 Fort Bragg Road, Southern Pines. Info: (910) 6922167 or www.ncparks.gov.

Wednesday, January 8

BROADWAY. 4 p.m. Holiday Inn, Broadway musical broadcast on screen. Sponsored by Knickers Lingerie. Sunrise Theater, 244 N.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-3611 or www.sunrisetheater.com.

Friday, January 10

ELVIS AND CHAGALL. 7 - 8 p.m. Author and lecturer Vivian R. Jacobson will present pairings by Marc Chagall along with the musical artistry of Elvis Presley. Owens Auditorium, 3395 Airport Road, Pinehurst. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com. BOOK EVENT. 5:30 - 7 p.m. Author Kate DiCamillo with her new juvenile fiction novel, Beverly, Right Here. Presented by The Country Bookshop. Southern Pines Elementary Auditorium, 255 S. May St., Southern Pines. Info: www.thecountrybookshop.biz. Tickets: www.ticketmesandhills.com.

Monday, December 23 SYMPHONY. 3 p.m. Join the N.C. Symphony for an evening of traditional and popular music for the holidays. Tickets can be purchased online, by phone or in person at The Country Bookshop, Campbell House or Tufts Archives. Lee Auditorium, Pinecrest High School, 250 Voit Gilmore Lane, Southern Pines. Info: (877) 627-6724 or www.ncsymphony.org. Tuesday, December 24 SANTA VISIT. 2 - 4 p.m. Santa will be at The Sly Fox for last minute requests. Free. The Sly Fox Pub, 795 S.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. Info: www.theslyfoxpub.com. CHRISTMAS EVE DINNER. Make your reservations for dinner early and join us to add a little holiday to your regular evening. Elliott’s on Linden, 905 Linden Road, Suite A, Pinehurst. Info: (910) 215-0775 or www.elliottsonlinden.com. Thursday, December 26 BROADWAY. 4 p.m. Holiday Inn, Broadway musical broadcast on screen. Sponsored by Knickers Lingerie. Sunrise Theater, 244 N.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-3611 or www.sunrisetheater.com. Friday, December 27 FOOD TRUCK. 5 p.m. Bo’s Kitchen. Southern Pines Brewing Company, 565 Air Tool Drive, Suite E, Southern Pines. Info: www.southernpinesbrewing.com. Tuesday, December 31 NEW YEAR’S EVE CRAFTS. All day. Kids and their families can participate in making a variety of fun and festive New Year’s Eve crafts. Southern Pines Public

WEEKLY EVENTS

Chicken and Waffle Dinner

12/

31

Library, 170 W. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-8235 or www.sppl.net. CHICKEN AND WAFFLE DINNER. 5 - 9:30 p.m. Come enjoy the annual dinner before you enjoy your New Year’s celebrations. Cost: $35. The Sly Fox Pub, 795 S.W. Broad St., Southern Pines. Info: www.theslyfoxpub.com. WINTER WONDERLAND. 6 - 8 p.m. Bring family and friends for a Winter Wonderland to ring in the New Year early. There will be live music, carnival games, face painting and more. The Pinecone Drop will be at 8 p.m. Downtown Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. NEW YEAR’S EVE DINNER. Elliott’s will be serving a regular menu with some holiday updates. Elliott’s on Linden, 905 Linden Road, Suite A, Pinehurst. Info: (910) 215-0775 or www.elliottsonlinden.com.

Mondays COFFEE AND CONVERSATION. 9 - 10:30 a.m. Adults 55 and older can come out to watch their favorite morning shows or discuss different topics. Bring your own coffee or bring $1 to share ours. Douglass Community Center, 1185 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. INDOOR WALKING. 9:30 - 11:30 a.m. Improve balance, blood pressure and maintain healthy bones with one of the best methods of exercise. Classes are held at the same time Monday through Friday. Ages 55 and up. Cost for six months: $15/resident; $30/ non-resident. Southern Pines Recreation Center, 210 Memorial Park Ct., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. BABY RHYMES: READ TO YOUR BUNNY. 10:30 a.m. This story time, reserved for ages birth to 24 months, will engage parents and children in early literacy brain-building practices. Dates this month are Dec. 2, 9 and 16. Programs are limited to 25 children and their accompanying adult per session. Parents or caregivers must check in with their valid Southern Pines Public Library full or limited access cards. Southern Pines Fire Station #2, intersection of Waynor Road and N.C. 22, Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-8235 or www.sppl.net. CONTRACT BRIDGE. 1–4:30 p.m. A card game played by four people in two partnerships, in which

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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CA L E N DA R

STUDENT ATHLETE OF THE MONTH BROUGHT TO YOU BY

The Pilot is sharing the success of local student athletes in our community with all of Moore County. We want to highlight those who achieve excellence on the field or court while also accomplishing great things in the classroom and community. Nominate your favorite student athlete by Thursday, December 5 Voting is open December 8-19 www.thepilot.com/promotions Winners announced in The Pilot newspaper on the last Sunday of the month!

“trump” is determined by bidding. Ages 55 and up. Douglass Community Center, 1185 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. MASTER GARDENER TRAINING. 6 - 8 p.m. Receive a high level of training in all aspects of horticulture. Training fee is $85 for those accepted into the program. Moore County Agricultural Center, 707 Pinehurst Ave., Carthage. Info: (910) 947-3188. MASTER GARDENER HELP LINE. 10 a.m. - 12 p.m. If you have a garden problem, a garden pest, a question, or if you want help deciding on plant choices, call the Moore County Agriculture Cooperative Extension Office. Knowledgeable Master Gardener Volunteers will research the answers for you. The help line is available Monday through Friday. Walk-in consultations are available during the same hours at the Agricultural Center, 707 Pinehurst Ave., Carthage. Info: (910) 947-3188. WORKOUTS. 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. Adults 55 and older are invited to get their workout on. Cost for six months: $15/resident; $30/non-resident. The gym is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. Douglass Community Center, 1185 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Southern Pines. Info and registration: (910) 692-7376. Tuesdays TRIVIA GAMES. 10 a.m. - 12 p.m. Adults 55 and older can compete with friends in trivia games to see who knows the most about all things great and small. Douglass Community Center, 1185 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. BABY RHYMES: READ TO YOUR BUNNY. 10:30 a.m. This story time, reserved for ages birth to 24 months, will engage parents and children in early literacy brain-building practices. Dates this month are Dec. 3, 10 and 17. Programs are limited to 25 children and their accompanying adult per session. Parents or caregivers must check in to story time sessions at the circulation desk up to an hour before the start time of each session with their valid SPPL full or limited access cards. Southern Pines Public Library, 170 W. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-8235 or www.sppl.net. TAI CHI FOR HEALTH. 10–11:30 a.m. Practice this flowing Eastern exercise with instructor Rich Martin. Cost per class: $15/member; $17/non-member. Monthly rates available. No refunds or transfers. Cape Fear Botanical Garden, 536 N. Eastern Blvd., Fayetteville. Info and registration: (910) 486-0221. GAME DAY. 12 p.m. Enjoy Bid Whist and other cool games in the company of great friends. For adults 55 and older. Douglass Community Center, 1185 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. TABLE TENNIS. 7 - 9 p.m. Enjoy playing this exciting game every Tuesday. Cost for six months is $15 for residents of Southern Pines and $30 for non-residents. For adults 55 and older. Douglass Community Center, 1185 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. Wednesdays

Fueled by

COFFEE AND CONVERSATION. 9 - 10:30 a.m. Adults 55 and older can come out to watch their favorite morning shows or discuss different topics. Bring your own coffee or bring $1 to share ours. Douglass Community Center, 1185 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. PRESCHOOL STORYTIME. 10:30 a.m. Especially for children ages 3–5, this story time focuses on stories, songs and fun, with a special emphasis on activities that build language and socialization skills to prepare for kindergarten. Dates this month are Dec. 4, 11 and 18. Stay for playtime. This event is limited to 25 children and their accompanying adult per session. Parents or caregivers must check in to story time sessions at the circulation desk up to an hour before the start time of each session with their valid SPPL full or limited access cards. Southern Pines Public Library, 170 W. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-8235. TAP CLASS. 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. For adults 55 and older. All levels welcome. Cost per class: $15/resident; $30/non-resident. Douglass Community Center, 1185 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Southern Pines. Info and registration: (910) 692-7376.

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December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


CA L E N DA R YOGA IN THE GARDEN. 6–7 p.m. Improve flexibility, build strength, ease tension and relax through posture and breathing techniques for beginners and experts alike. Free for CFBG and YMCA members, $5/non-members. Cape Fear Botanical Garden, 536 N. Eastern Blvd., Fayetteville. Info and registration: (910) 486-0221, ext. 36 or www.capefearbg.org. (Must register one day prior). Email questions to mzimmerman@capefearbg.org. CONTRACT BRIDGE. 1–4:30 p.m. A card game played by four people in two partnerships, in which “trump” is determined by bidding. Ages 55 and up. Douglass Community Center, 1185 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. Thursdays GIVEN STORY TIME. 10:30–11:30 a.m. For ages 3 to 5. Wonderful volunteers read to children, and everyone makes a craft. Free and open to the public. Given Memorial Library, 150 Cherokee Road, Pinehurst. Info: (910) 295-6022. TODDLER TUNES. 10:30 a.m. Especially for children ages 18 - 36 months, this program will incorporate stories and songs along with dancing, playing and games to foster language and motor skill development. Dates this month are Dec. 5, 12 and 19. This event is limited to 25 children and their accompanying adult per session. Parents or caregivers must check in to story time sessions at the circulation desk up to an hour before the start time of each session with their valid SPPL full or limited access cards. Southern Pines Public Library, 170 W. Connecticut Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-8235. MAHJONG (Chinese version). 1–3 p.m. A game played by four people involving skill, strategy and calculation. Ages 55 and up. Douglass Community Center, 1185 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. CHESS. 1–3 p.m. All levels of players welcome. You need a chess set to participate. Ages 55 and up. Douglass Community Center, 1185 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. YOGA IN THE GARDEN. 6 - 7 p.m. Bring a yoga mat, water bottle and open mind to enjoy this all-level class to improve flexibility, build strength and relax.

Cost per class: Free/member; $10/non-member per session or $30 for four classes. Cape Fear Botanical Garden, 536 N. Eastern Blvd., Fayetteville. Info and registration: (910) 486-0221. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays HISTORY OF PINEHURST TOUR. 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. (1 hour and 15 minutes each). Also by request. Experience the Home of American Golf on a guided windshield tour with Kirk Tours and learn about Mr. Tufts and some of Pinehurst’s celebrity patrons. Cost: $20/person. Departs from Pinehurst Historic Theatre, 90 Cherokee Road. Info and registration: (910) 295-2257 or www.kirktours.com. Fridays COFFEE AND CONVERSATION. 9 - 10:30 a.m. Adults 55 and older can come out to watch their favorite morning shows or discuss different topics. Bring your own coffee or bring $1 to share ours. Douglass Community Center, 1185 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. TAP CLASS. 10 - 11:30 a.m. For adults 55 and older. All levels welcome. Cost per class: $15/resident; $30/ non-resident. Douglass Community Center, 1185 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Southern Pines. Info and registration: (910) 692-7376. CONTRACT BRIDGE. 1–4:30 p.m. A card game played by four people in two partnerships, in which “trump” is determined by bidding. Ages 55 and up. Douglass Community Center, 1185 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Southern Pines. Info: (910) 692-7376. JAZZY FRIDAYS. 6–10 p.m. Enjoy a bottle of wine and dancing with friends under the tent with live jazz music. Cost: $15/person. Must be 21 years of age or older. Reservations and pre-payment recommended for parties of eight or more. Soda, water and awardwinning wines available for purchase. Food vendor on site. No outside beverages (alcoholic or nonalcoholic), coolers, picnic baskets or cooking devices permitted on premises. Birthday cakes, cheese trays and small items are acceptable. Anyone bringing in outside alcohol will be asked to leave with no refund. Cypress Bend Vineyards, 21904 Riverton Road, Wagram. Info: (910) 369-0411 or www.cypressbendvineyards.com. PS

Happy Holidays!

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PineNeedler Answers from page ��� 8 2 3 6 7 4 9 1 5 R A I D A R T E W E L C S L I M C A C A O P A L R E V D R A W L E F R I F L Y R O M P O R A L M A N Y

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I T C H C H O U Y E A R A L L A T S I R R I S H C I A P A L L E L L O N P P Y A L E R L A T E S N I P

We are so excited to see you at our new location! 160 Pinehurst Ave. Unit H Southern Pines, NC 910.725.2241

Call us for all your commercial and residential HVAC and plumbing needs.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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Homestyles

QWIK PACK & SHIP HERE FOR YOUR SHIPPING NEEDS!

Landscape Design, Installation and Maintenance Irrigation Landscape Lighting Landscape Renovation Water Features & Koi Ponds Meditation & Healing Gardens And more… Visit our website for a full list of services:

www.pinescapes.com 216 Commerce Ave (near Walmart) Southern Pines, NC • 910-725-0336

910-315-6051 Barry Hartney

Horticulturist N.C. Certified Landscape Contractor “The finest in quality landscape in the Sandhills for 21 years”

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December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


SandhillSeen

Peggy Sue Zubay, Peter Zubay

Southern Pines Brewery 5th Anniversary Southern Pines Brewery Saturday, October 19, 2019 Photographs by London James Gessner

Randy Hernandez, Manny Samson Stacey Fowler, Cheryl Sobjack

Jimmie Guy. Jesse Park, Thomas Rice Denise Baker, Patty Thompson

Herbert Ruto, Bernard Romo

Jason Gings, Mike Murphy, Melissa Murphy John Catlett, Erin Brennan, Jeff Luas

Reed, Andrew & Lauren Morrison

Katie North, Ryan South

Russell Page, Sarah Brown Gary Head, Jessica & Dave Sills

Will Duncan, Moira McCarron, Clarissa Pempsey

Matt Martin, Ben Brist

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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SandhillSeen

Mark, Teresa & Elisabeth Remmenga

Red, White and Brew/Wine Walk Pinehurst Saturday, November 09, 2019 Photographs by George Walls

Gwen Bronson, Julie Heitman, Samantha Finch

Amy Cordero, Stella Reeves, Elizabeth Cordero

Sydney Simpson, Matthew Mihacsi

Cameron & Monica Carter

Debbie & Mike Reggins

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Molly & Zeb Jaillett, Maria Shahvari, Chad Brown

Phil & Sandy Mondi

Ed & Karen Krogulski

Silvia & Kyle Krug, Joe, Laura, Caroline & Alex Bleuet

Debie & Shawn McCool

Lisa & Rich Wells

Arlene & Mick McCue

Adam, Brit & Kyle Wolfe

December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


SandhillSeen Pawsibilities-Humane Society CCNC Friday, October 25, 2019

Photographs by Lynn Conrad, Corinne and George Walls Rusty & Ilene Wells

Dr. Brian Parks, Julia & John Kober

Crystal Brown, April Nayman, Kathy Lavery

Tim Short, David Kellis, Daryle Lemonds, Don Innis, Henry Baldwin, Nick Reid, Steve Lapping

Carly Whitmore, Laurie Laphem

Bruce Jaufmann, Carol Wadon, Patrick & Karen Feron

Joann Fry, Patrick Kelly Tim Sessoms, Wendy Schmidt

Corky & Kristen Gillis

Charlie Benizio, Jean Ledford

Albert & Darlene Smith Jerry & Elaine Schwartz

Kathleen & Ray Ford

Suzanna & Al Mayfield

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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Arts & Culture

910-944-3979 ts Ticke just t a start *

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MON, DEC 23 | 7PM

LEE AUDITORIUM, SOUTHERN PINES Wesley Schulz, conductor

Celebrate the season with music from The Polar Express and The Nutcracker, and more— plus a sing-along! Come early to meet Santa!

Gallery • Studios • Classes

25th Annual Fall Exhibit & Sale

Concert Sponsor: Penick Village

SWING INTO THE ROARING ’20s!

Open through December 20

NEW YEAR’S EVE VIENNA WITH A TWIST

Instructors Day

TUES, DEC 31 | 8PM

MEYMANDI CONCERT HALL, RALEIGH

Sunday January 5th • 2-4PM Instructors will be demonstrating their upcoming classes.

Wesley Schulz, conductor Jeffrey Biegel, piano

Gallery Hours: Monday - Saturday 12-3pm

Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue and Viennese waltzes.

Don’t get left out in the cold—buy now! ncsymphony.org | 877.627.6724

TEMPLE

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THEATRE

120 Carthage Street

128 W. Pennsylvania Ave. Belvedere Plaza Southern Pines, NC 28374 (910) 725-0465

Sanford, NC 27330

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For those who appreciate fine art

December Spotlight on PAULA MONTGOMERY, Mixed Media Artist

December 5-22

FOR TICKETS TEMPLESHOWS.COM OR CALL 919.774.4155 122

December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


SandhillSeen

Lynne & Frank Thigpen

Man and Woman of the Year Pinehurst Members Club Thursday, October 24, 2019

Photographs by Corinne and George Walls Kathryn Holding. Greg Zywocinski

Becky McKenzie, George & Mickey Wirtz

Bekah Bibb, Russell Sugg Seyi & David Adamolekun

Carol & Dan Butler

Kim Ledford, Nicole Bennett

Judy & John Miller

Nathaniel & Blanchie Carter

Ben & Ellen Jordan

Clay & Martha Dunnagan Brenda & Mickey Buchanan

Carter & Debra Bingham

Bo & Carol King

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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Giving families

a brighter future with

compassionate home care. 24 hour, 7 days a week availability

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JEWELSMITHE Jeff Lomax Master Jeweler

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910.692.9543 950 Old US Hwy 1 South Southern Pines, North Carolina

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It’s why I’m here. Dereda Porter, Agent 355 Pinehurst Ave Southern Pines, NC 28387 Bus: 910-692-1722 dereda@dereda.com Mon-Fri 8:30am to 5:30pm Evenings & Weekends by Appointment

1706811

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Your home and car are more than just things. They’re where you make your memories – and they deserve the right protection. I get it. It’s why I’m here. LET’S TALK TODAY.

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910.212.2722

December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


December PineNeedlerThere's a chill in the air. By Mart Dickerson

Across

1. Bust, so to speak There’s a chill in the air 5. ACROSS 1. Bust, so to speak 5. “___ does it!” 9. Allergic reaction 13. Small blood vessels 16. “Ma petit ____-fleur”, french endearment 17. Porch greeting, 2 wds 18. Calendar span 19. Playground item 20. Atlantic fish 22. “____ or nothing” 23. Bungle, with “up” 25. German subs (hyph) 27. Chocolate source 30. Bottle top 32. White wine aperitif 33. October birthstone 34. “Do the Right Thing” pizzeria owner 35. “_____ the thought! 38. Gun, as an engine 39. Chilly 41. Cloak-and-dagger org. 42. Desk pull-out 44. Tokyo, formerly 45. ____bearer, at a funeral 46. Hawaiian welcome gift 47. Anger 48. “You there?” 49. Chilly 51. Indian bread

Puzzle answers on page 117

"___ does it!" 53. Aviate 9. Allergic reaction 54. Actress 13. Small bloodCeleste vessels 56. Chilly 16. "Ma petit ____-fleur", 59. Cavort french endearment 61. Non-drinker 17. Porch greeting, 2 wds 64. Face-to-face exam 18. Calendar span 65. Comprehend 19. Playground 66. Alot item 67. He and 20. Atlantic fishshe 68. Barber’s action 22. "____ or nothing"

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46 47 48 23. Bungle, with "up" DOWN 25. German subs (hyph) 49 50 51 52 1. Chilly 27. Chocolate 2. God ofsource war 53 54 55 56 57 58 3. “___ 30. Bottle topbe a cold day in hell ...” 59 60 61 62 63 4. Point, math 32. White wineinaperitif 5. New York paper 65 64 33. October birthstone 6. Garden tool 34. "Do the Right Thing" 67 68 66 7. “___ for the poor” pizzeria owner 8. British vessel 35. "_____ the thought! 9. Chilly 38. Gun, as an engine 31. Adjust 49. Opposite of fauna 10. Dramatic 45.bit 65. Letter writing friends Throw forcefully 50. Tiny Comprehend 34. “To ___ with12. Love” 11. BBQ embers 39. Chilly 35. No longer an14. amateur morallazy standards in 47.ofMost Texas round-up 52. Lack 12. Throw forcefullyorg. 66. Alot 41. Cloak-and-dagger society 36. Pie perch 14. Texas round-up 48. Half of Hispaniola 15. Ticket leftover 67. He and she 42. Desk pull-out 53. Gift tag word 37. Angel headwear 15. Ticket leftover 49. Opposite of fauna 21. Jailhouse, in slang 55. Coordinate 68. Barber's action 44. Tokyo, formerly 39. Put on a scale 21. Jailhouse, in slang 50. Tiny bit 24.home Computer copy 57. Agenda 45. ____bearer, at copy a 40. Adam and Eve 24. Computer Down funeral Snowman 52. Lack of 26. Balloon moral 43. Pan-Asian chain restaurantfiller Pei ___ 58. Abominable 26. Balloon filler 1. Chilly standards in society 60. Thickness as wood or wool 46. Hawaiian welcome 45. Letter writing27. friends Firewood measure 27. Firewood measure 2. God of war47. Most lazy 62. Men’s neckwear gift 28. Mimic 53. Gift tag word 28. Mimic 63. Agent, for short 3. "___ be a cold day in 47. Anger 48. Half of Hispaniola 55. Coordinate 29. Horse-riding soldier 29. Horse-riding soldier hell ..." 48. "You there?" 57. Agenda 31. Adjust 4. Point, in math 49. Chilly 58. Abominable 34. "To ___ with Love" 5. New York paper Snowman 51. Indian bread 35. No longer an amateur 6. Garden tool 60. Thickness as wood or 53. Aviate Sudoku: 36. Pie perch wool 7. "___ for the poor" FillCeleste in the grid so every 54. Actress 37. Angel headwear 62. Men's neckwear 8. British vessel 56. Chillyrow, every column and 39. Put on a scale every 3x3 box contain the 63. Agent, for short 9. Chilly 59. Cavort numbers 1-9. 40. Adam and Eve home 10. Dramatic 61. Non-drinker 43. Pan-asian chain 11. BBQ embers 64. Face-to-face exam restaurant Pei ___

Mart Dickerson lives in Southern Pines and welcomes suggestions from her fellow puzzle masters. She can be reached at gdickerson@nc.rr.com.

8 7 9 1 8 9 4 5 1 2 1 4 2 4 3 5 3 6 2 1 3 5 7 8 3

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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Restaurant Thank you for shopping at the

MOORE COUNTY FARMERS MARKET in 2019 Winter Season

Is November thru mid-April” On Thursdays at the Armory 604 W. Morganton Rd. In Southern Pines 9am - 1pm” Local (within 50 miles) in-season produce, Kale, Apples, collards, Swiss chard, turnips, winter squash, Greens, lettuce, sweet potatoes, greenhouse tomatoes, Grass fed beef, free range pork and chickens, eggs, baked goods, Jams, prepared foods, plants, crafts, Micro Greens, Ostrich Meat, Goat Cheese, plus other FirstHealth and Downtown Southern Pines locations are closed for the season and will re-open mid-April 2020

Call 947-3752 or 690-9520 for more info. hwwebster@embarqmail.com www.moorecountyfarmersmarket.com Moore County Farmers Market Local Harvest www.facebook.com/moorecountyfarmersmarket SNAP welcomed here

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Authentic Thai Cusine

U.S. Hwy 1 South & 15-501 1404 Sandhills Blvd. Aberdeen, NC 28315

Vegetarian Dishes & Gluten Free Available • No MSG

Lunch

Tuesday - Friday 11:00am - 2:30pm Saturday Closed for Lunch Sunday 11:30am - 2:30pm

Dinner

Tuesday - Sunday 5:00 pm - 9:30 pm Saturday 4:00 pm - 9:30 pm

www.thaiorchidnc.com

(910) 944-9299

December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills


T H E A C C I D E N TA L A S T R O L O G E R

More Changes Afoot

Hold your sigh of relief that 2019 is almost over because the stars predict a ride of a lifetime in 2020 By Astrid Stellanova

Humankind dances to the tune of celestial music, the sky full of stars seemingly

winking at us to its beat. But there is more to know, Star Children. The universe is shifting, and its secrets will soon be revealed. We are on the verge of astrological history ahead, when Ceres, Mercury, Pluto, and Saturn line up at 22 degrees Capricorn. As we conclude a year with more drama and ruckus than anybody, even me, could have predicted, with more change coming. You ain’t seen nothing yet. The December-born, whether Sagittarius or Capricorn, make a mark so big they only need one name to remember: Beethoven, Sinatra, Disney, Matisse, Bogart. What future greats will be born this month? Sagittarius (November 22–December 21) Honey, when you look back, you’ll realize this year has been one of transformative changes. Just as Dorothy opened up the farmhouse door (’cause it’s the 80th anniversary of The Wizard of Oz this year) to a vivid, colorful reality so different from the black-and-white one she knew in Kansas, you, too will enter a new world. Technicolor was a miracle then, and it is going to be a miracle that your own black-and-white life is drab no more! Capricorn (December 22–January 19) Sometimes you may feel like you’re in a bewildering, upside-down and bassackwards family. But like a redneck marriage, even if you got a divorce, well, Sugar, you still are connected. Aquarius (January 20–February 18) Would you be willing to go all in for your dreams to come true? What would you eliminate? Strip away? Like a lady of the night promised for the right price, “Everthang but my earrings.” Pisces (February 19–March 20) A reckoning is ahead. Might as well be rolled in meal and fried in lard if you don’t face facts. It’s sometimes more important to be honest than to be right. Darlin’, here comes your truth test. Aries (March 21–April 19) You found yourself after a lot of searching, Sweet Pea, like finding a car when they mowed the yard. Treasure found! Keep the grass cut and enjoy the wheels of discovery. Taurus (April 20–May 20) Holy shiplap! Here is you, your fine self, doing honest work and feeling good about yourself. How’s it feel, Honey Bun? Can you admit that it wasn’t so hard after all to be a team player?

Gemini (May 21–June 20) It don’t require a trip up the hog’s rear end to know where there’s bacon. Despite everything, you seem to want to do things the hard way. Maybe this is a time to reconnoiter. Cancer (June 21–July 22) Sugar, it’s like buying a camouflage toilet seat: You will still get busted when you miss. If you spend too much time on covering up the possibility of error, you don’t gain a dang thing. Leo (July 23–August 22) Like being too drunk to fish, your life has been a contradiction in terms. Seems like you want two entirely different paths, but can’t see they eventually converge in the — say whaaaat? — parking lot. Virgo (August 23–September 22) Mind your own biscuits, and life will be milk gravy. You got so close to the dream, then you changed your order when you heard somebody else talking to the waitress. Find your truest ground. Libra (September 23–October 22) Saw the T-shirt that says, “You ain’t Baroque. You’re just out of Monet.” Like the person who printed it, you have a sense of humor and it must be used. In the toughest of times, it will save you, Funny Bunny. Scorpio (October 23–November 21) You keep wondering why folks don’t get you. You love the South, a good story, and home for the holidays. Truthfully, you ain’t as mysterious as people think. You’re just better-dressed. PS For years, Astrid Stellanova owned and operated Curl Up and Dye Beauty Salon in the boondocks of North Carolina until arthritic fingers and her popular astrological readings provoked a new career path.

PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 2019

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SOUTHWORDS

Dispelling Darkness

By Tom Allen

Candles go with Christmas like eggs

with Easter; turkey with Thanksgiving. Choose tapers or tea lights, votives or pillars, from hundreds in stores or online. Some burn a flame, others need batteries. Dripless or scented, there’s a candle for every occasion.

Candles, although not high-tech like cars or computers, remain a billion dollar industry, fueled by wellness and self-care trends. Cocooning requires candles. Staying in has become the new going out. Open the Hello Fresh box, pour a glass from wine-of-the-month delivery, and light a seasonal scent from Bath and Body Works. “Alexa, play some Diana Krall.” Used to be candles served practical purposes, though occasionally, decorative. My mother, pragmatic and minimalist when it came to Christmas decor, stationed two red tapers at each end of our mantel, with cellophane intact. The tapers remained unlit despite the manger scene, even on Christmas Eve. When the power went out during a January storm she might remove the cellophane and light the candles, but ambience had nothing to do with kindling a flame. Electric candles, with opaque, orange bulbs from the 1950s and ’60s, illuminated front windows; by the ’70s, Colonial Williamsburg’s influence reached small-town N.C. White lights replaced colored. Clear lights glowed in our windows, lit our tree, and twined around the lamppost. But red tapers, cellophane intact, still stood on the mantel. I’m not sure Mom ever bought into the scented candle craze. French Vanilla? Frosted Cranberry? If the power goes out, who needs aromatherapy? Gimme some light so I can see how to brush my teeth. Today, chandlers (the fancy name for folks who make candles) market to our olfactory receptors and life situations. Tough day at the office? How ’bout a Stress Relief 3-Wick Eucalyptus + Spearmint or a soy-based Lime Basil Mandarin? Snowed in without a good read? Light a Frostbeard Studio brand favorite — Bookstore, a

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blend of “driftwood, mahogany, coffee, and the subtle scent of leather.” Missing your homeland? Homesick specializes in candles that “tap into your sensory memory through nostalgic scents that remind you of the place you grew up.” For 30 bucks you can take North Carolina on the road over the holidays and “breathe in memories . . . recalling blackberries, peaches, and notes of smoky barbecue. Spicy hints of cinnamon and clove are balanced with mild and sweet tonka bean and amber.” Tonka bean? What’s a tonka bean? I confess, my wife and I bought into the seasonal scents — Bahama Breeze, Clean Cotton, Apple Spice. And for the holidays, Balsam and Cedar, Christmas Cookie, Home for the Holidays. Our favorite, from locally owned Seagrove Candles: Yuletide, our answer to “Candle of the Month” for December. No electric candles in our windows. Only traditional red tapers, sans wrappers, line our mantel — three on each end, with brass holders of varying heights. Tea lights for my grandmother’s buffet, pillars rest on our dining room table, and votives cast a glow on departed loved ones’ photos. An Advent wreath, with three purple candles and one pink, lit weekly to remind us of the season’s significance, sits beside a Hummel Nativity. Last Christmas, thanks to my wife, after 27 years, the remaining two Wise Men found their way to the creche, illuminated by the wreath’s “Christ Candle,” reserved for Christmas Eve. Christmas and Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights, fall during the darkest days of the year. Light plays an important role in those narratives. Angelic light surrounds frightened shepherds; a star guides Magi to a newborn king; a tiny bit of oil miraculously burned for eight days in a temple candelabrum. Perhaps that’s why we light Advent wreaths, menorahs, and Yankee Candles during lightstarved December — to remind us that light dispels darkness, whether inside our cocoons or deep within our souls. So strike a match, light up the mantel, kindle your own flame. Create light. Be light. Illuminate your corner of the world. What a wonderful, priceless gift. PS Tom Allen is minister of education at First Baptist Church, Southern Pines.

December 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PineStraw : The Art & Soul of the Sandhills

ILLUSTRATION BY MERIDITH MARTENS

A candle for every season, every reason


Buyer, Purveyor & Appraiser of Fine and Estate Jewellery 229 NE Broad Street • Southern Pines, NC • (910) 692-0551 Mother and Daughter Leann and Whitney Parker Look Forward to Welcoming You to WhitLauter.


HOME FOR THE

Holidays

Look for the “Mark” of a Great Builder 910-673-1929

mark@stewartcdc.com

www.StewartConstructionDevelopment.com

Profile for PineStraw Magazine

December PineStraw 2019  

The Art & Soul of the Sandhills

December PineStraw 2019  

The Art & Soul of the Sandhills

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