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Camp Woodie

From Explorers and Princesses


An art like any other

Fishing at Pack’s This one’s for the girls




Back for its 5th year on Oct. 8, the PigTales Barbecue Festival is one of the Harvin Clarendon County Library’s biggest fundraisers and will be headed this year by Ikey Brunson and the Friends of Library’s own Kay Prothro. Started in 2007, by The Item and The Clarendon Sun, PigTales pits Clarendon County’s best cookers against some of the best from Sumter, Orangeburg and Williamsburg counties. Organizers hope more barbecue aficionados will make their way to Manning Municipal Park in downtown Manning for this year’s festivities. Make sure to check back with The Item and The Clarendon Sun for event anouncements as PigTales gets closer! For more information call: Ikey Brunson at 803-433-2273 2 AUGUST • SEPTEMBER 2011 | LAKESIDE or Gail Mathis at 435-85111






R. Darren Price




READY FOR THE HUNT New apprentice hunting licenses 10 TAXIDERMY ART Hobby into enterprise 12 BEAT THE HEAT Get ready for deer hunting


THE FISH Aren’t just for the boys


HARD TIMES On a good fishing trip


ON THE LAKE Pictures on Santee Cooper 32

LAYOUT & DESIGN Cary Johnson PHOTOGRAPHY Robert J. Baker, Darren Price & Gail Mathis

GET YOUR HUNT ON Widlife Refuge opens soon 37 EXPLORERS TO PRINCESSES Camp Woodie has it all 44


Yana Mathis, Earle Woodward Ray Winans, Michele McLeod John DuRant


LANDMARKS AND LANDSCAPES Berkeley County • Calhoun County • Clarendon County • Orangeburg County & Sumter County

The Santee Cooper lakes, both Moultrie and Marion, cover Berkeley, Calhoun, Clarendon, Orangeburg and Sumter counties, providing nearly limitless recreational opportunities for those who love the outdoors in small or large doses. Altogether these counties boast Revolutionary War battles sites, grave markers of war heroes, museums dedicated to preserving watershed moments in state

The Moncks Corner Train Depot was once the first destination for mail and news from the outside world and also served as a platform for farmers to sell goods. Renovated in 2000, it now serves as the town’s Visitor and Cultural Center, and the facility can rented for special occasions, meetings and seminars. Old Santee Canal Park and Berkeley Museum are located on S.C. 52, near the Tailrace Canal in Monck’s Corner. For more information, call (843) 761-9622.


and American history, beautiful churches that have sheltered the worship of Jesus Christ for more than two centuries, and wildlife reserves, swampland and nationally recognized, pristine forests.


The Berkeley County Blueways consist of 175 miles of waterway comprised of 23 paddling trails in Lake Moultrie, lower Lake Marion, the Santee River and Francis Marion National Forest. For more information, visit www.berkeleyblueways. com, email berkconsdist@homexpressway. net, or call (843) 719-4146. Mepkin Abbey, a community of Roman Catholic monks, was built in 1959 on the Cooper River, S.C. 402, north of Charleston, where historic Mepkin Plantation once stood. Guided tours of the church are provided at 11:30 a.m., Tuesday through Saturday; and 3 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday. The abbey is closed to visitors on Monday. Groups of 10 or more visitors are asked to make reservations by calling (843) 761-8509.


The Calhoun County Museum and Cultural Center, located at 303 Butler St., St. Matthews, contains an art gallery, along with agricultural galleries and a research room with archives. Open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday-Friday, the museum also offers research opportunities by appointment only. For more information, call (803) 874-3964 or visit www. calhouncountymuseumandculturalcenter. org.

on its 201 acres, which contain steep, undisturbed bluffs bordering the Congaree River. A preserve kept by the Department of Natural Resources, the bluffs contain American beech, oak-hickory and bottomland hardwood forestry along with more than 100 species of other trees, shrubs and woody vines. For video of the bluffs, visit Ve4Ds . For more information, call (803) 874-3337. Shady Grove Methodist Church, located on State Road S-9-53 in Cameron, was built in the 1800s on land given to Conrad Holman in 1740 by King George II. Its oldest section was built with handhewn log framing set by wooden pegs in the early 1800s. Its white-frame building, along with its bell tower and steeple, were recognized as a historical site in June 1970.


The Congaree Bluffs Heritage Preserve, located on Turkey Track Lane near Fort Motte and St. Matthews, provide nature walks ranging from easy to strenuous

The Clarendon County Museum and History Center, operated at 102 S. Brooks St., Manning, by the county’s Historical Society, is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday-Friday, and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, excluding holidays. The museum features permanent exhibits dedicated to war memorabilia and the county’s agricultural history as well as an early 20th century kitchen furnished with an antique wood stove, cast-iron water pots and oldfashioned china and cutlery. Lake Marion Artisans, a group of

artists from throughout Clarendon County and its surrounding areas, has an open gallery select hours Thursday-Saturday of each week at 108 Main St., Summerton. The 33-mile Lake Marion passage of the Palmetto Trail skirts along the high water mark of the north side of Lake Marion in Clarendon County. Trail users can enjoy some of the most magnificent vistas in the coastal plain with opportunities to spot abundant wildlife and colorful flora. Much of the land along the trail is open for hunting, and users should wear bright colors during big game hunting seasons, which is from the middle of August through January.

The Manning Farmers Market opens 10 a.m. each Saturday through October at Manning Municipal Park, corner of Church and Boyce streets. For more information, call Manning City Hall at (803) 435-8477, ext. 118. The Morgan Sauls Home, located on Old Georgetown Road four-and-a-half miles northeast of Manning, is an attractive “raised cottage” built in the mid-1800s by Minto McFaddin, Morgan Sauls’ great uncle. Acquired by the Sauls in the 1930s, the building was renovated, and wings were added on each side for bedrooms, a dining room and a kitchen. The downstairs area, once a dining room and kitchen, has been redone, exposing the original hand-hewn sills now used in combination with mellow brick floors. Started in 2007, the 5th annual PigTales Barbecue Festival will be back Oct. 8 in downtown Manning under the leadership of Ikey Brunson with help from Friends

of the Library’s Kay Prothro. The festival, which pits cookers against one another in finding the best barbecue and ribs, is one of the key fundraisers for the Harvin Clarendon County Library. Check for more information and schedules as PigTales gets closer. Pocotaligo Park, located at the intersection of U.S. highways 301 and 521, has a 1,296-foot boardwalk leading from the highway into the Pocotaligo Swamp, where it winds through 40 acres of swamp and timberland. The park is open each day during daylight hours and is free to the public. Santee National Wildlife Refuge, located in North Santee and Summerton, was first opened in 1941. The refuge manages 10 conservation easements and serves as a major wintering area for ducks and geese and a stopover area for neo-tropical migratory birds, raptors, shore birds and wading birds. Endangered and threatened species at the refuge include the American alligator and the wood stork. The Visitor’s Center is open 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Tuesday-Saturday. The refuge trails and grounds are open daily from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. through Aug. 31. For more information, call (803) 478-2217, or email The Swamp Fox Murals are spread throughout Clarendon County and feature depictions of Gen. Francis “Swamp Fox” Marion and his soldiers fighting the British in Clarendon and surrounding areas. Murals in Manning are located on the walls of B-Mart, the Manning Fire Department, IGA, Edward Jones, Piggly Wiggly, Geddings Do It Best Hardware and Substation II. In Summerton, they are located at Baucom Realty, Ginger’s Flower Shop, the Walker building, Detwilers and Gaters Law Office. in Turbeville, they are at Dollar General, the

Smith Building and the corner of Main and Gamble Streets. The newest mural, completed in June by Terry Smith, is located at CitiTrends, South Mill Street, Manning. Weldon Auditorium, North Brooks Street, Manning, is a state-of-the-art performing arts facility originally built in 1954 and re-opened after years of disrepair in December 2010. For more information and a schedule of events, visit


The Alex Salley Archives Building, located on the corner of Middleton and Bull streets in Orangeburg, houses irreplaceable historical records, papers and other items relating to the county’s past. Hours are 9 a.m. to noon, Tuesday; 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Wednesday; and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the first Saturday of each month. For more


Revolutionary War, and also one of the last major battles of that war fought Sept. 8, 1781.

information, call (803) 535-0022. The Edisto Memorial Gardens and Home Wetlands Park, off Seaboard Street in Orangeburg, were first developed in the 1920s with azaleas planted on five acres of land. A greenhouse was added in 1947, followed by a rose garden in 1951. The gardens display past and current award-winning roses from the All-American Rose Selections, with more than 4,000 plants representing at least 75 labeled varieties on display. The Elloree Old Town District features buildings that date back to the early 20th century, antique shops, gift boutiques, art galleries, restaurants and the Elloree Heritage and Cultural Museum. Located on Historic Cleveland Street in downtown Elloree, about seven miles from Santee off Exit 98 at Interstate 95, the museum was founded in 1998 as part of the downtown area’s revitalization efforts and boasts a rotating series of exhibits in its 10,000-square-foot facility and specifically focuses on rural life of the past. Opened Oct. 5, 2002, the museum’s Farm Wing is its oldest, continuously run exhibit. For more information, call (803) 897-2225 or visit Eutaw Springs Battlefield is commemorated by monument on S.C. 6 in Eutaw Springs to designate one of the bloodiest battles of the American


I.P. Stanback Museum and Planetarium, located at South Carolina State University in Orangeburg, features a 40-foot planetarium dome, located across the foyer adjacent to the galleries, and has an auditorium capacity of 82 seats and a Minolta IIB Planetarium Projector. Educational programs for schools may be arranged by appointment two to four weeks in advance. Admission to the museum is free, but fees for programs vary. Hours are 9 a.m. to 4:40 p.m., MondayFriday. Call (803) 536-7174 for more information, or visit The Neeses Farm Museum, 6449 Savannah Highway, S.C. 4, Neeses, contains historic artifacts like clothing, butter churns, a woodburning stove, a cotton gin, a handmade plow, grain cradles, saws and other farm items. Displays include pottery, arrowheads, jewelry, regalia and more as part of a Native American cultural exhibit and exhibits on World War I and II. School tours are popular, giving children a glimpse of life on a farm 100 years ago. For more information, call (803) 247-5811. Orangeburg National Fish Hatchery, located at 427 Lakeview Drive on the S.C. 21 bypass in Orangeburg, is one of more than 60 federal fish hatcheries located in the United States. Operated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the hatchery produces a number of species, including striped bass and red breast and bluegill sunfish, which are used to stock lakes

and streams throughout the southeastern United States. Nose sturgeon are used for research and development at the site. The aquarium is open from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Monday-Friday. For more information, call Hatchery Manager Willie V. Booker at (803) 534-4828 or email the hatchery at


The Cultural Center on Haynsworth Street in Sumter contains both the Sumter Gallery of Art and Patriot Hall. Housed in a newly renovated facility, the gallery offers classes throughout the year for kids, teens and adults. Located at 135 Haynsworth St., Sumter, Patriot Hall frequently hosts national and international acts, including the Moscow State Symphony of the United Soviets Socialist Republic, the Charleston Ballet, the Atlanta Symphony, the U.S. Coast Guard Band and a variety of touring plays and musical productions. For more information, call (803) 436-2260. Poinsett State Park in Manchester State Forest encompasses 1,000 acres of separate trails for hiking, biking and trail riders, and also contains Sumter’s 14-mile portion of the Palmetto Trail, a 425-mile long trail from the mountains to the seat spread across the state. The lake at Poinsett is the perfect setting for a relaxing ride in a paddleboat, which can be rented at the park’s office, while Lake Marion is obviously ideal for kayaking and canoeing. The park office is located at 6660 Poinsett Park Road, Wedgefield. For more information, call (803) 494-8177. The Sumter County Genealogical Society, 219 W. Liberty St., Sumter, is open 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2-5 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays, but is closed for all major holidays. Queries begin with a

nonrefundable deposit of $20, which also covers the first hour of research. Copies and mailing charges are extra. Facility volunteers ask that requests be as specific as possible, with all relevant information provided. For more information, call (803) 774-3901, or email Editor Jay Ingersoll at sumtergensoc@

Sumter, is the only public park in the United States serving as home to all eight species of swans, including black necks, royal white mutes, coscorobas, whoopers, black australians, whistlers, bewicks and trumpeters. The park has an open-air Garden Street picnic shelter, the covered Heath Pavilion that seats 200 comfortably and the enclosed Visitor’s Center with conference/reception space for 125 people. Tables are located throughout the grounds, and a large playground features an antique fire engine perfect for climbing. The Bland Gardens feature a boardwalk, on which visitors may meander through a cypress swamp, and a gazebo popular for spring weddings. Call (803) 778-5434 for more information about reservations for any of the park’s facilities or email tourism@

The Sumter Opera House, on North Main Street in Sumter, shows a classic film on the second Friday of each month, presenting the classics in a gorgeous Art Deco movie house that was the city’s first movie theater. Shows start at 7:30 p.m. and admission is $2.50. For a schedule, visit Swan Lake Iris Gardens, located on West Liberty Street in

Look for Our Next Lakeside in October! Email us your photo to To place an advertisement call Gail or Christy at 435-8511. We need your story ideas. Please call Bobby at 435-8511.



Barbeque Cook-Off Clarendon County Manning City Park on Church Street

Oct. 8, 2011 10AM to 2PM

Across from the Manning United Methodist Church

Watch for event announcements! For more information call Ikey Brunson at 803-433-2273 or Gail Mathis at 435-8511

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Take a trophy, don’t be one With the unrelenting heat of the past couple of months, I know it’s hard to believe, but hunting season is almost here. In Clarendon County you can bow hunt Aug. 15, only days away. Gun season starts in earnest Sept. 1, and the woods will be filled with hunters eager to take their first trophy of the season. I’ve never been excited about hunting in September – especially since hearing how my cousin, Ralph Bleasdale came, literally eyeball to eyeball with a water moccasin while tracking a deer through some underbrush. I think I’ll wait for the nice, cool October days before I tackle the woods. Each year as hunting season looms nearer, my office gets many questions about hunting liability. People ask, “Should I have it? Do I really need it?” They say, “I have my property posted, isn’t that enough?” I should begin by saying you can be taken to court for anything. Personally, I’ve seen a number of claims where the owner had his or her property posted nine ways from Sunday, and they were still taken to court – and lost. Typically, when someone asks me whether they need a certain insurance coverage or not, I seldom tell them they don’t. If I do, old Mr. Murphy will rise up and I’ll find myself in an errors and omission suit. I take this better-safe-thansorry route because, while certain claims are unlikely and even rare, they do happen in real life. Those farmers who are part of the group of people that believe it’s enough to have their property posted generally assume that their land will be covered by the farmer’s insurance.

Farmowner’s insurance is markedly different than policies covering hunting liability, and that difference is as simple as saying that the former covers farm accidents and the latter covers hunting accidents. Basically, if someone in any way leases your land to hunt, they need to either have a separate hunting-lease policy, or there must be some specific language in the land contract that specifies that they have liability coverage for hunting. At the same time, the farmer needs, as property owner, to be listed on the hunter’s policy as an additional insured party. You should always request certificates of liability from the hunting parties. That way, you are covered under their policies. I think it goes without saying that any hunting club needs its own policy to protect its members. Hunting accidents are possible in any situation, especially with the use of shotguns and high-powered rifles. Even with hunting clubs, a property owner needs to make sure he or she is listed as an additional insured party. As a hunter myself, I know the dangers of hunting and I am careful to take all safety measures. Although I don’t usually hunt early in the season – and I don’t believe Ralph does either – I do make sure to have liability in place for my own hunting clubs when I belong to any.

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The hunting life’s for you? Story by Robert J. Baker with file photos


hen a guy gets invited by his buddies to a weekend hunt, what’s he to do when he’s never hunted? Hunters, after all, need licenses, and licenses require an eight-hour training course. According to the Department of Natural Resource’s Lt. Billy Downer, any guy or gal interested in trying hunting for the first time can apply for an apprentice license, even the day before that first hunt. “We began this last year,” said Downer, who is the coordinator for DNR’s hunting education program. “It’s a way so that if they want to try hunting out, but they don’t have time to take hunter ed, then they have this apprentice license.” The AL gives new outdoorsmen a chance to try hunting out with the supervision of another licensed hunter who is 21 or older,


a licensed hunter who “can take control of a situation if something happens,” Downer said. From the moment a hunter applies for the license, she has a year to take the hunter education course, which can be completed in one of four ways: *Internet – This is the only hunter education course for which there is a $15 charge to pay the network provider for the course. *Classroom – Courses are offered sporadically throughout the year at various locations throughout South Carolina. *CD-ROM – Can be picked up from DNR offices and be used on a home computer. *Home study – Provides a workbook for those without computer access. “Three of these options let the hunter work the course at home,” Downer said. “However, no matter what method you choose,

everyone has to come in and take the final test in person. We have to be able to see who you are, and prove that you’re the one who took the course and took the test.” Other things to remember about hunting licenses, Downer said, include: *No hunting or fishing licenses or permits are required until a person reaches age 16. *All persons born after June 30, 1979, are required to complete the Hunter Education Course to purchase a hunting license. *Persons whose privileges are suspended are not eligible to apply, hold or use DNR licenses, permits, stamps or tags. Downer said since the program began last year, DNR officials are currently unsure exactly how many apprentice hunters took to South Carolina’s fields and forests. “We had about 2,100 purchase hunting licenses, though,” he said. He said the apprentice license, like the hunting license itself, does not cover other permits needed to hunt certain wildlife. “The apprentice license functions like the basic hunting license, so it doesn’t include any migratory bird stamps, big game permits or anything they might need in addition to it,” Downer said. For more information on the hunter education program, call 1 (800) 277-4301 visit


Terry Coleman of TNT taxidermy in his room of finished, mounted animals. He’s been working as a taxidermist for a couple of years and previously worked on the hobby while with the Sumter Fire Department.

An art like any other Sumter taxidermist turns hobby into enterprise Story and photos by R. Darren Price


hen Sumter’s hunters and fishermen want to show off their best catches, they go to Terry Coleman. Coleman, 49, is one of several taxidermists in the Lake Marion area, who spends each day stuffing and mounting fish, deer, ducks and just about anything else he can get his hands on. While running TNT Taxidermy, Coleman has seen just about everything a person can hunt locally, but he still comes across a few surprises now and 12 AUGUST • SEPTEMBER 2011 | LAKESIDE

then. Looking at his shop in front of his home, one could assume Coleman has been a taxidermist his entire career, but he’s only made it a full-time business since retiring from the Sumter Fire Department several years ago. A fellow firefighter introduced Coleman to the hobby and showed him how to do it. And he spent a lot of time doing it, so he decided to make it a business. “I’ve always liked hunting and fishing,” he said. “So I kind of picked it up.”

Above and Below: Terry Coleman reaches for putty to fill out some of the loose spots in a bass he is mounting. If he doesn’t fill areas like the eyes and jaw with putty, he said the skin should shrink into the crevices when it dries.

The doors of Coleman’s large cedar building open into a common area that would put many hunting lodges to shame. Stuffed buck heads look out at a kitchen area with tables, chairs and a TV from one side of the wall. To the right of that large room is a narrow, one-lined wall-to-wall exhibition of sorts, showing some of Coleman’s best completed works. There are largemouth and striped bass, frozen with their mouths gaping as if they’d only just been yanked from the lake. Mallards, wood ducks and other waterfowl pose with wings spread, suspended by small grey wires. There are snakeskins, bobcats, foxes, deer and raccoons – just about every animal found and hunted commonly throughout the state, even – all of which remain frozen in time. But the wall also shows a line of Coleman’s ribbons won in state taxidermy competitions. “I’ve never won a blue ribbon,” he said, pointing to the wall full of red and white ones, signifying second- and third-place finishes. “But I’ve gotten close.” Then, there’s the actual shop. More Spartan than the other two that make up the building, it’s got a couple of work benches, a sink, a large freezer and various animals in equally various stages of preservation. Ducks and fish are currently about the only thing being brought in by Coleman’s clients this summer, so they make up most of his work and will until the weather cools. Luckily for Coleman and his clients, ducks and fish are some of his favorite animals to mount. “I like doing ducks,” he said. “It just comes easy to me.” Coleman has worked out a process that works for most of the animals he stuffs. He typically gets the entire animal for most of what he takes in, except for deer and other wildlife where hunters may only want the head mounted. He skins the catch, rinses off any dirt and grime from the pelt and usually freezes it until he’s ready to stuff and mount it. In the meantime, Coleman orders everything he needs for the animal he’s working, and he can order a mold for just any type or size of game. He has a shelf full of catalogues solely for white foam casts. He uses others to order plastic eyes for eye sockets and taxidermy chemicals, powders and solutions if he’s running low on them. Coleman can find anything he would ever need, he said, whether for something mundane like a striped bass or a deer head, or for something more exotic, perhaps an African large cat or mountain goat. He equates the process to an artist ordering supplies before making a sculpture. “It’s just like any other type of art,” Coleman said. And like most types of art, stuffing an animal is a delicate process. Once Coleman and his supplies are ready, he coats the inside of the pelt with a white powder not unlike the stuff parents add to a teen’s sports clothes to keep them smelling fresh. “This helps dry it out a little bit,” he said. He stretches the skin over the mold, careful not to tear the skin, and usually staples the ends of the pelt to the mold in a place where they’ll be out of sight. He fills out the places where the mold doesn’t fill out the pelt with a little putty, and then lets the project dry.


Terry Coleman works on a set of peacock quills at his shop in Sumter.

Sometimes, as he does with fish, Coleman needs to replace parts, so he keeps extra fins and tails from other fish that have come through. This process works well with the fish, Coleman said, because he usually paints them when he’s done. It makes it difficult to tell a new, more attractive appendage has replaced a ragged one. “See how much nicer this one is than the one on there?” he said, holding a perfect tail fin. Coleman has a lot of little touches he adds later in the process. He paperclips pieces of plastic during the stuffing to hold up a fish’s fin or to showcase its gills. This, he said, keeps them looking perky when the animal’s dried out and ready to go. For ducks, he’ll paint a faux beak to give the animal a more lively look than it had alive; he said the real one will dry out and fade over time. When finished, he fills out arrangements with plants or a frame. “It’s a lot to say,” he said. “But it usually just falls together.” Stuffing an animal might seem like a slow, tedious process, but Coleman makes it look otherwise. He can take a bass from a lifeless sheet of scales and make it something close to what you would expect to see on the wall of a hunting lodge 14 AUGUST • SEPTEMBER 2011 | LAKESIDE

Preserved skulls from a variety or small animals sit on a shelf in TNT Taxidermy’s showroom.

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in about 20 minutes. Most bigger animals, he said, don’t take a lot longer, though completing one in eight or more hours a day over the years has turned it into a quick process. “I’ve been doing it a long time,” Coleman said. “The first time I did it, it took a lot longer.” Most of the animals Coleman stuffs are those you’d expect for the region – deer in the fall, fish in the summer and small game throughout the year. Coleman said he stuffs hundreds of fish, ducks and deer a year. But, he said, he’ll sometimes get something out of the ordinary. He recently mounted a fullgrown black bear with a friend. It was his first, and Coleman needed a bit of creativity, he said, as he had to cut several molds to fill out the bear. But the strangest animal he’s ever mounted? “I did a guinea pig once,” he said. “I had to take a picture of it once I was done.” Coleman said overall his business has been a fun way to make some extra money. The work takes some discipline, he notes, because being his own boss means he has to make extra effort to stay on task. But it’s worth it, he said. And his wife is all right with his work, too. “As long as I don’t make her do it, she doesn’t mind,” he said.

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Terry Colemen pulls out a bass for mounting. He can mount a fish in about 20 minutes, and usually paints them a few weeks later to give them a more lively look.



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August means heat, and time for deer hunting! By Earle Woodward


t’s one of the hottest months of the year in South Carolina. It’s the time most people dread leaving their homes, but for the deer hunter of South Carolina, it’s the month to really start cranking it up. That means going outside. Those of us that are dedicated archery hunters will open our season Aug. 15, and that means that there are only 10 days from the issue date of this publication to get things prepared. Gun hunters still have a few more weeks, but for them, things like food plots can no longer be put off. First things first: In order to effectively harvest the animal of your desire, you’ve got to be able to hit it! Seems like a no-brainer, I know, but things can happen over a long off-season to throw off bow sights and rifle scopes. This is the time for some adjustments and refinements. Those of us that bow hunt should have already done this; we should have been practicing and adjusting for weeks now. Unlike gun hunting, we tend to forget the property shooting form, and the muscles used to properly draw, hold and aim the bow atrophy a bit during the spring and summer. They need to be tunedup and strengthened and nothing will do that any better than practice, practice, practice. While gun hunters usually shoot from a steady rest, the need for the weapon to be as accurate as possible is no less important. Small things, like a change in temperature or humidity, a gentle bump or rough handling can change the impact point of almost any rifle scope. Back in the days when I hunted with a rifle, I don’t remember a single season that I did not have to do at least minor adjustments to the scope to bring it back into true. We spend way too much


time and money to hunt deer, and most of us have an enormous respect and love for the animals we are trying to harvest; shouldn’t we do our best to ensure the quickest human kills possible? Meanwhile, back in the garage, isn’t it also time to take a good look at the deerstand/stands that you intend to hunt from this year, especially if you have left them up all summer. Bolts rust, straps rot and wood shrinks; everything needs to be gone over so that you don’t take an unexpected tumble from 15 to 20 feet in the air. Speaking of wood shrinking, back in my rifle days, I did an awful lot of hunting from homemade, wooden-ladder stands. For the most part, they are very comfortable and can be custom-made to the hunter to some degree; they are also extremely dangerous. I personally know two people who have taken tumbles from wooden stands, with both suffering back and neck injuries. The problem with wooden stands is that wood rots over time, and when treated lumber is used to fight the rote, the wood shrinks as it dries. Yes sir, that nail or lag bolt felt really tight when you put it in last year, but after a summer of 100-degree heat, the water in the treatment has evaporated and the wood has actually pulled away from the nail or bolt, thereby making it easier for steps and floor boards to pull out with considerable ease. Add in some rust on that nail, which makes the nail smaller and weaker, and you have a recipe for disaster. I’m not saying don’t use them; there are thousands of them all over the state. I’m just saying, inspect them very well before you climb aboard and be aware of the risk. Regardless of the type of stand that you hunt from, and I hunt almost exclusively from “Lock-On” type stands, your No. 1 piece of equipment should be your safety harness. Get it out and check it good! Gun hunter or bow hunter, we can all make that misstep, or that unseen problem with the stand can occur, and out we go. A safety harness can save your life. I know that it may not be “cool” to wear one, and most people think that they’re better hunters than that and would never have a problem, but accidents are just that: They’re accidents, and nobody plans on having one. The new and improved harnesses are wonders of technology and a whole lot more comfortable than the old-style ones. Some come with hydration bladders and camouflage and slow-descent systems. They are a little expensive, but isn’t your life and the happiness of your family worth $100 or so? I do not hunt without one … period. Yeah, I know it’s hot, but let’s get outside, plant those plots, trim those shooting lanes, check over the stands, sight in those rifles and bows and practice until it’s dark! Regardless of the heat, that’s more fun that watching TV.

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ome of my co-workers know that I do a little fishing and hunting, but when they approached me about writing an article in Lakeside, I was a little skeptical since I don’t know anything about writing. I normally just sit behind a desk all day on the computer. So here goes nothing. Most of the time I go fishing on the weekend so I can catch some sun rays and relax before it’s time to go back to work on Monday. Here lately, we’ve been fishing the Thursday night weekly bass tournament out of Pack’s Landing. July 21 was the first time we’d fished a Thursday night tournament in a couple of weeks since it’s been so darn hot. I got off work at 5 p.m., ran in the house and got out of my work clothes, fixed me a big glass of iced tea and we took off. We were running a little late due to the repaving of Pinewood Road; however, we made it to Pack’s about 5:45 p.m., in time for blastoff at 6 p.m. We pulled up to the boat dock and the live well was checked by tournament director Derrick McLeod (no relation) to make sure we didn’t bring any fish with us. We unloaded the boat in the water and waited there with the others in the 100-degree weather until it was time to blast off. Out of 17 boats that night, we were to blast-off 16th. Boat No. 1 was called and they took off along the side of the first trussel and a few seconds later the next boat was called, and so on. Some turned to the left of the second trussel; others turned to the right. But everyone was trying to beat the other person to where the fish were biting. My partner, Terry, and I made a right turn at the trussel and headed toward broad water. Or was it otto flat or indigo flat? I don’t know, they all look alike to me! We were in a Skeeter bass boat with a 200 horsepower motor on the back, so it didn’t take us long to get where we were going. Finally, after reaching our destination, hair slicked back from going so fast, I pulled out my fishing rod and began to fish using a crank bait. I like fishing with the crank bait because I seem to be able to feel the fish on the end of the rod better once he bites. It’s a lot of work because you are steady reeling in and throwing out, but it’s just my preference for fishing. I was throwing toward the bank and under the trees as I was instructed to do. I was also instructed to let it sink, twitch it, give it some slack, throw it here and throw it there. By the time I was given all of these instructions, I would get so nervous that I wasn’t doing it right that I began throwing it in the trees or getting hunt up on the bottom. See, when you’re tournament


fishing, time is very precious and I know I was aggravating my partner because he would have to stop his fishing and get my line out of the bushes or trees. I threw a couple more times and by this time I was about to sweat to death. I think the index at 6:30 p.m. July 21 was about 110 degrees. It was ridiculously hot. My partner put the first three fish in the boat; they were not “legal” fish, so he threw them back. I was getting a little agitated because of the heat and because I was trying so hard to put a weighing fish in the boat and not having any luck. I decided to change bait so I got out my fishing rod with the worm. I threw a couple of times, letting it sink and twitching it just a little when finally I felt a bump and then another little bump and my partner told me to set the hook so I gave it a big jerk to set the hook and reeled it in. It was a legal 14-inch bass, not very big, but legal. I made him get the fish off the hook because I don’t like the way the slimy fish wiggle in your hand. He caught a few more small ones and threw them back. We eventually moved to other fishing spots closer to the landing. Weigh-in was at 9 p.m., and it would take a few minutes to get there. We went into little creek to try and catch some last-minute bass and maybe even the winning big fish, but they weren’t biting. The only thing biting were these giant mosquitoes. We only had two fish in the live well at this point and it was about 8:20 p.m. I was hot, sweaty and eat-up with mosquito bites, so I thought it was a good time to go. We put our rods up, put the lights on the boat and cranked up and headed back toward the landing. As we got closer, we could see all of the other boats racing to the landing for the 9 p.m. weigh-in. We put the boat back on the trailer and pulled in to the parking lot at Pack’s. Everyone was taking their fish to scales to weigh-in. I overheard some people say they didn’t catch anything, or that they caught a few that weren’t legal. We were told that 11 pounds was leading, so far. We only had two fish and they probably weighed four pounds together, so we didn’t bother weighing ours. With bass tournaments, most of the time the fish are released back into the water, so we put our two little fish back in the water. Maybe one day they will grow up to be the big fish of the night. Ladies, remember fishing isn’t just for men. It’s a good opportunity to spend quality time with your husband, boyfriend or whatever the case may be. Get out and catch some rays and relax and unwind from your busy schedule.

The fish aren’t just for the boys Story and photo by Michele McLeod


Freeze that wild game right

Nancy Harrison



unters and their families are well aware that wild game provides some of the most wholesome, most nourishing food; but those families also know that meat should be preserved carefully to retain quality and ensure safety. Hunters and wild game aficionados are well aware that freezing meat is the ideal way to maintain top quality, but some key steps can be easily overlooked during this crucial process. If you’re looking to have some of your kill now, wrap the meat in a moistureproof plastic wrap, or place it in a clean plastic storage bag. Store the meat in the refrigerator and use within two or three days. To make sure the rest of your meat is frozen properly, your first priority should be to keep any raw meat

separate from cooked meat to prevent cross-contamination. You don’t want the meat you’re saving for later making you sick now. Knives, hands and cutting boards should be washed often during the process with warm, soapy water. Trim fat and inedible parts from the carcass, and then mix 15 percent pork or beef fat with ground game and 35 percent pork fat with fresh game sausage. To freeze game properly after this point: • Freeze meat while it is fresh and in top condition. • Divide meat into meal-size quantities • Prevent “freezer burn” by using good-quality freezer paper. Use moisture/vapor-proof wrap such as heavily waxed freezer wrap, laminated freezer wrap, heavyduty aluminum foil or freezer-

weight polyethylene bags. • Press air out of the packages prior to sealing. • Label packages with contents and date. • Freeze and store at 0 degrees or lower. • Avoid overloading the freezer. Freeze only the amount that will become solidly frozen within 24 hours. • Avoid long storage periods. Limit fresh game to eight months’ frozen storage, seasoned or cured game to four months’ frozen storage. Most states require that all wild game be used before the next hunting season. Of course, any freezing process will lead to thawing, which can be done in a refrigerator or microwave oven. Game meat is often high in bacterial content, and thawing at room temperature is not recommended to avoid bacterial growth. Foods thawed in the microwave should be cooked immediately. Refrigerator-thawed meat should be used within one or two days.


Game animals lead active lives, giving them relatively lean muscles. Those lean muscles make game meat driver than domestic meat and poultry. Therefore, it is important to use cooking methods that add juiciness and flavor the game meat. Trim away fat before cooking if you didn’t trim before the game was cut. Wild game fat tends to become rancid quickly, contributing to the well-known “gaminess” flavor that keeps game meat from showing up on many a dinner table. Add other fats to keep game meat from becoming too dry. Rub a roast with salt pork, butter, margarine, beef suet, bacon fat, vegetable fat or sweet or sour cream to add

moisture, richness and flavor. Lard your lean game meat by inserting slivers of uncooked salt pork or bacon with a skewer or ice pick. If you make your own rolled roasts, add beef or pork fat to the inside and outside of the roast before it is tied. Baste very lean cuts with additional fat to improve flavor. Serve game meat very hot or very cold. Lukewarm game fat can have a greasy taste. No game would be right without marinades, which can tenderize, enhance or disguise game flavors to fit your preferences. Cover meat with one of the following marinades and allow to stand in the refrigerator at least 24 hours. Broil, roast or braise. • 2 cups vinegar, 2 cups water, ½ cup sugar • French dressing, tomato sauce, undiluted tomato soup or tomato juice • Fruit juice (such as lemon, pineapple or a mixture of many juices) • ¼ cup vinegar, ½ cup cooking oil, ½ teaspoon pepper, ¼ teaspoon garlic salt • 2 cups water; 2 cups vinegar; 1 to 2 tablespoons sugar; 4 bay leaves; 1 teaspoon salt; 12 whole cloves; 1 teaspoon allspice; 3 medium sized onions, sliced • Garlic salt, salt and pepper to taste and equal parts of Worcestershire sauce and two of your favorite steak sauces • 2 tablespoons vinegar, 1½ teaspoons ground ginger, 1 clove minced garlic, 2 tablespoons brown sugar, ½ cup soy sauce, ¾ cup vegetable oil • Commercial marinades • Milk


Trim off all game fat; rub with bacon drippings or similar fat. Season with salt, pepper and desired herbs. Place on a roasting rack, bone-down, in an uncovered pan. For added flavor, place bacon strips on top of the roast. Baste with additional fat as needed, but do not add water. Roast uncovered at 300 degrees. Allow 20 to 25 minutes per pounds. Since lean game meat usually cooks faster than beef, use a meat thermometer. Game meats should be cooked to an internal temperature of 160-170 degrees.


Cut the meat into one-inch cubes. Sprinkle with flour and seasonings. Brown on all sides in medium-hot fat, then cover meat with boiling water. Cover kettle tightly and simmer until tender for two to three hours. Do not boil! Add vegetables just long enough before serving time so they will be tender.


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Hard times on a good fishing trip Story and photos by Ray Winans


as everyone been enjoying the heat? Well, neither have I! I’m glad that I got to fish as much as I did this spring. It’s just too hot to stand on the front deck of a boat with beads of sweat rolling down every part of your body and try to anticipate where and when the next bite is going to happen. For now, the only hard core fishing I’m going to see is on my couch watching Bassmasters on TV. When I last wrote, I mentioned my

annual camping trip on the river, so let me tell you about that since I don’t have a good fishing report to give. I promised you in the last column some pictures and a good story or two, so sit back and let me entertain you. It was a beautiful Friday morning prior to Memorial Day weekend celebrations, and there was not a cloud in the sky (Yeah, right! There was an 80 percent chance of strong thunderstorms looming). I gathered all of the items and loaded them into my jon boat for a great weekend with my buddies.

I made double- and triple-sure that everything was secure for the journey to Columbia for the annual launch. I made it to the park and ride on the Sumter Highway along with my son, who would return my truck and empty boat trailer safely back home for Monday’s scheduled pickup. Yeah, this is where the adventure begins. Before I even got to the Wateree river bridge, I see a big blue object flying oh-so beautifully through the air and into the ditch. Remember that double- and triplesecure move? Well, oops, there goes my


sleeping bag, coats and shoes. Luckily, I had secured the top well enough that when I backed up 300 yards or so to retrieve it, only my flip flops had flip flopped out. Now, with that really secured (put in the back of my truck) I was on my way, again! Everything seemed to be going all right. The boat launch went pretty smooth, and the dark ominous clouds looked to be a ways away (Ha! Ha!). My son had left the ramp and I my only concern was if he could remember how to get out of Columbia. Ring, ring! went my phone. My thoughts: “He’s lost already?” “No,” my wife said, “He wrecked your truck.” I couldn’t figure it out, so I walked back up the ramp and not too far up the road about 100 yards. There was my truck, my bent boat trailer and my son with that total oh-no-I’m-in-trouble look on his face. I will admit, I was pretty upset when I first reached him, but God said to me, “You’ve messed up before; you need to think about what he’s feeling and comfort him.” It also dawned on me that he had to drive my truck home still and he needed to be focused, not upset. So, after about 30 minutes of loading the unpullable trailer onto another, we finally said our goodbyes and set off on our journey. We enjoyed about 30 minutes of fishing with pretty good results. I had boated five bass with three of them being nice smallies. I was feeling in the groove and no pressure. But that was til the first rumble of thunder was closer than I wanted. I looked back up the Congaree River and saw the storm responsible for the noise. My thoughts were to get to the Interstate 77 bridge and let the 30 AUGUST • SEPTEMBER 2011 | LAKESIDE

tail-end of the storm go by while I waited nice and dry under the bridge. Key words to remember are “nice” and “dry.” That plan didn’t work out so well: After dropping the anchor and hiding behind a pylon for about 20 minutes, I soon found out that my nice and dry scheme didn’t work out. Now that it was a whole hour or so into our adventure, I figured it was time to move on down toward our first camping spot and try to let things in the past be things in the past. But not so fast: As I was running toward our first camping spot, I thought I would run over to this little point and try a few casts. I made it to within 300 yards of the spot only to be stopped dead in my tracks from a gravel bar that I had not counted on.

Jon boats rest on the shore of Congaree River during Ray Winans recent annual fishing trip.

Yep! I was out of the boat and pushing now. This had to be the last thing to go wrong for the day, right? Nothing else could possibly go wrong, right? Not quite, you see, because when my motor quit on the gravel bar, it seemed to jam into gear, thus not allowing the pull cord to function properly. Notice the proper use of owner’s manual terms applied now. I don’t believe those were the words that I properly used at that moment, though. I finally fixed the problem and headed toward the camp site, though, and we set up camp that afternoon and enjoyed a wonderful steak dinner with every camp site fixin’. I was relieved the day was coming to an end and tomorrow would give us a chance to start anew. We did manage to fish a couple of hours after dinner, which got us plenty of fish. It looked like the bad was behind me and the rest of the weekend could be enjoyed. The next two days went pretty smoothly; I actually took a few pictures to show everyone what I got to see and enjoy. The boat traffic was minimal due to repairs on the S.C. 601 bridge. I assume that the boat ramp was closed because of the repair work being done. All the better for us, since there was no fighting for sand bar camping spots like in the past. On Monday, Memorial Day, I awoke to a big splash in front of the sand bar and noticed some surfacing fish. I snuck down to my boat; don’t want to wak those tired camping buddies of mine over a stupid fish, right? I grabbed my rod with the red craw crank bait tied on and quietly ran back to where the fish jumped. I made one cast and the fish alarm sounded, with a striper

about 21 inches long on my hook. He wasn’t happy about it. I looked around and, next thing I know, everyone is wide awake and casting. I’m not sure what the total count of rock fish was, but it had to be more than 10 that we caught before, during and after breakfast. It was time to pack up and meet our families for pickup at Pack’s Landing by 11 a.m. We had to do some running since we never made it past the 601 bridge. My only concern? Did I have enough gas to get back? With a little ribbing from Jimmy, I did manage to make it all the way back without running dry on gas. Ken wasn’t so lucky: He ran out in the ditch only about a mile or so from the landing. But it wasn’t too much of a problem. With a little assistance from Tom, he made it back along with everyone else. This was by far the most eventful trip I’ve had, but it all seemed to work out. My boat trailer was fixed by the time I got back on Monday, with special thanks to David Harris of Pinewood for repairing a broken trailer rather expediently. My son lost that oh-no-I’m-in-trouble look; he replaced it with a glad-tosee-you-dad-have-a-good-time? tune. I have to thank all the boys that went on the trip this year. We really shared another true adventure on our annual camping trip. In no special order, they were Patrick Lester, Jimmy Charles, Ken Evans and the Devine Clan, Tom the father, T.J., the oldest son and, yes, our Sumter High School state wrestling champion, Matt Devine. It was really a blessing to be in the company of such good men. I would wish this crew on anyone who would venture out on the river anytime. Thanks for the memories, guys.


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On the Lake...

Left: Photo provided by Lisa Wilson Michael Robinson from Virtually Unshockable performs July 15 at one of the Fridays at the Plaza concerts in downtown Sumter.

Below: Photo provided by Ivy Moore A great egret fishes along the shore at Huntington State Park near Murrels Inlet.

Photo by Robert J. Baker to Billy Petty, 19, of Manning, runs ren Dar by wn thro ee frisb guard a June Barrett, 19, also of Manning, on . ning Man in Park on Britt 30 at J.C.


e Above: Photo by R. Darren Pric Lake of ers wat the r ove flies gull A sea lier this Marion in Clarendon County ear s filled bird The ter. win late ing dur year they le whi lake the the skies around looked for fish and other food. y Left: Photo provided Robin B. Purd this in leaf a on d che per sits fly A dragon r the picture taken in early spring nea Bloomville area of Manning.

Photo provided by Kathy Cramer ow in While snow crabs typically burr ing dur d fee and day sand during the for the night, this big guy came out ing visit was she n whe Kathy Cramer Island. relatives recently at Seabrook


Livin’ Lakeside

Mobile home financing, a Realtor’s nightmare


By Yana Mathis

irst of all, I’d like to ask you, how’s this summer heat working for you? I have been hibernating in as much air conditioning as I can find. However, when I get a call from a buyer, I joyfully put all that aside. As of this writing in the latter half of July, I’m working on a closing for a buyer of a lake-area mobile home that I’d like to share with you. As of now, I have “faith” that we will have a successful sale this week. If not, I will let you know in the next issue. This is a young family with children moving in from out of state, with a job transfer nearby. They chose our lake area for their permanent home so the family could enjoy the relaxed lifestyle while the husband commutes to a nearby town for his job. This is a common occurrence we see around Lake Marion. People are so drawn to our relaxed atmosphere with the slow pace of living that many don’t mind traveling to their jobs every day. This family was pre-approved for a home that was about three times more expensive than the mobile home that we all fell in love with. I say “we” because I had been looking and looking, but could not find a home with all the preferences they wanted and needed (big family) within their price range. Also, one of their requests was to live outside of city limits for lower taxes and a bigger piece of land. Well, every time I plugged those parameters into my Realtor’s multiple listing system, I came up with the dreaded “0” results. This covered not only Clarendon County, but Sumter and surround areas as well. After several unsuccessful searches, I decided to go to Plan B: I started off looking for four bedrooms, and I allowed the search to include mobile homes. I then narrowed down the school districts that they wanted. Finally, I carefully examined each one. Voila! There they were. We looked at several, but all agreed the one near his parents’ place at the lake was just perfect. Well, perfect in the financial sense. I called to verify the price with the listing agent because it just seemed like such a low price. It was the perfect example of a “diamond in the rough.” It was a spacious home with a fantastic yard full of trees. Still, there was a lot of stuff one needs to be able to get past, both physically and mentally, to see the future possibilities for a place like this one.

This is where my skills and experience come in handy. I was personally involved in moving a doublewide to a vacant lot in the lake area and employing a professional mover who was able to tell me exactly hot to set it up to Federal Housing Authority underpinning guidelines. This is extremely important if you want the easiest way to resell or obtain financing for a used mobile home. Well, the sale I’m working on has a vinyl skirting, and the home still has a title, just like a car, i.e., personal property. This makes it almost impossible to find any lending institution on the secondary mortgage market that will offer financing. I knew that, so I sent him to a local banker, and they did an in-house commercial loan with a fixed rate for five years, maximum loan time of 15 years. But they required a 25 percent downpayment! This was no reflection on the buyer, because he has a good credit rating and an excellent job. It was based purely on the fact that it was a mobile home. One of the frustrating things for a real estate agent is to accept the fact that banks and mortgage companies discriminate so badly in cases like this. Yes, I’m aware of all the problems that were caused “back in the day” when mobile homes were being sold new SANTEELAKESIDE.COM 35

and had inflated appraisals that investors on the West Coast were being duped into thinking were worth more than they actually were. This case is different. This fellow is paying less for his home than many cars cost these days. Clarendon County has the tax appraised value at 50 percent more than what he’s borrowing. The purchase price is 66 percent of the tax-appraised price; the buyer’s putting 25 percent cash down, yet the bank has to do an appraisal before it will make the loan! The local banker agreed with me that if my guy had walked in and asked for a car loan for the full amount, he probably would have gotten it without hassle or wait. Of course, I can’t blame to banker; his/her hands are tied! But by whom? Our federal government! They’re about to regulate us to death. Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) stipulation are very detailed and have recently changed, binding everyone to sometimes ridiculous wastes of time and money when it comes to selling real estate. As of now, here are the players in this game: the seller, her agent, the buyer, his agent (me), the seller’s bank holding the title, the buyer’s bank, the bank’s underwriting department, the appraiser, the paralegal, the title abstractor, the insurance agent, the closing attorney, the termite inspector and the highway department should we de-title the home. That’s 14 people trying to make this happen in four days’ time. This is going to be a continuing problem for our inventory of mobile homes on the market for sale. We have different categories of locations, for example, like town, rural, lake area and waterfront.

Currently our lake area mobile homes on the open market I looked at for comparison totals 66 homes. The range of asking prices is $14,500 to $199,000, with the average being $86,941 and median $79,900. The range of days on the market is 10 to 1,738, with the average being 346 days and median 236. Yep, you got it, an average of one year to sell your lake area mobile home! I’d venture to say that the sold price versus the asking price will be a big reduction by the time it finally sells. If you’re a seller of one of these, I suggest you seriously think about offering some owner financing or consider renting. Most real estate offices have a property manager and can run credit checks on the buyers and handle the headaches of being a landlord for you. If you’re not willing to do this, you (a seller) can invest in having a structural engineer come and inspect your mobile home and tell you an alternative way to have FHA financing approval. Instead of having the footers poured with concrete with the tie downs embedded, you can have shear wall applied to the concrete pillars beneath the mortgage market for a 30-year term with a low interest rate. It’s definitely worth having the engineer come and do an inspection. Be sure to have your agent advertise the fact that it qualifies for FHA financing once you’ve had it checked out by a qualified FHA inspector or engineer. Remember, it’s the home that needs approval, not just the buyer, at least when it comes to selling a used mobile home. Don’t wait for any surprises; consult a seasoned, local real estate agent as your guide through this difficult process. Enjoy your summer!

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Get your hunt on... at Santee National Wildlife Refuge Story by Robert J. Baker with file photos



t’s still summer for one more month, but officials at Santee National Wildlife Refuge are gearing up for the fall hunting season, which means one thing at the refuge: white-tail deer. “That’s the time for white-tail deer at the refuge,” said Park Ranger Susan Heisey. “It is also permitted (and encouraged) for hunters to take feral hogs as an incidental take during these hunts.” Hunts are limited on refuge lands to archery at the Cuddo Unit or primitive weapons, including muzzle-loading rifles and archery) during the designated weeks for specific hunts. The lottery application process for the refuge’s Bluff Unit family-kid hunt begins Sept. 1, and interested hunters have the entire month to sign-up for the selection process. “It’s a way to expose the youth to hunting and the outdoors,” Heisey said. “Each interested hunting party must contain one youth and one adult.” Begun in the early 1940s, the refuge is one of more than 550 such refuges in the nation and its territories whose mission is


“to administer a national network of lands and waters for conservation management and, where appropriate, restoration of the fish, wildlife and plant resources and their habitats … for the benefit of present and future generations of Americans,” according to a refuge brochure. Heisey said aside from the Bluff Unit-specific hunt, others include: • Pine Island Hunt with primitive weapons – Oct. 10-15 • Cuddo Unit with archery – Oct. 17-22 • Cuddo Unit with primitive weapons – Nov. 7-12 The specific Bluff Unit Youth Lottery dates, evenings only, are Fridays and Saturdays, Oct. 14-22. “We’re looking forward to this season,” Heisey said. “We want hunters to remember that the refuge hunting permit and state license should be with the hunter at all times.” For more information on refuge hunts, call (803) 478-2217 or visit You may also write Santee National Wildlife Refuge, 2125 Fort Watson Road, Summerton, SC 29148 to request more information.


Protect yourself if you rent

he downward economy has taken its toll on the housing market. Many people are choosing or finding it necessary to live as renters rather than homeowners. Other renters are students, anxiously awaiting their first foray into residential independence. But these same people may be unaware of how to safeguard their belongings in a rental situation. Oftentimes renters mistakenly forego financial protection and are then left high and dry in the event of a burglary, flood or fire. Laptops, MP3 players, global positioning systems, jewelry, and cell phones are at the top of the list for would-be thieves. Furniture and clothing are also expensive to replace. According to MetLife Auto & Home(R), the average person is estimated to have approximately $20,000 in possessions. In a rental property, individuals such as a superintendent or landlord may have access to your home, as may hired contractors. It’s important to protect all of your belongings so you don’t have to pay out of pocket if something is taken or damaged. Renting an apartment is not like living in an on-campus dorm or in a private residence, where belongings are typically covered by a homeowners insurance policy. Landlord’s insurance only protects the actual property -- not your valuables or the cost of temporary housing -- and it doesn’t protect you in case of a lawsuit. You should investigate rental insurance, which is something that, despite the warnings, 80 percent of college and other renters do not do, according to research. “For a few hundred dollars a year or less, you can purchase a solid renter’s policy that covers protection for your valuables -- up to $75,000 -- as well as protection against personal liability,” said

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Mario Morales, an underwriting manager at MetLife Auto & Home. “Imagine experiencing a fire or other disaster in your apartment, and having to replace all your valuables not to mention all the furniture, pots, pans, dishes, and other necessities at your own expense. Hopefully, you won’t have a theft or experience a fire. But, if you did, you’d know your valuables were protected.” When safeguarding your apartment and choosing a rental insurance policy, consider these important tips from MetLife Auto & Home: * Ask whether the renters coverage pays actual cash value or replacement cost. With “actual cash value,” your coverage will pay only for what your property was worth at the time it was damaged or stolen, due to depreciation. “Replacement cost” coverage will replace the item at current prices. * Take advantage of a discount for multiple policies. Often insurance companies provide a discount when a person has multiple policies, such as renter’s insurance, car insurance, or life insurance. * Add extra protection for unique items with special value. For expensive items such as jewelry, furs, fine arts, sterling silver flatware, antiques, and other collectibles, renters should add an “endorsement,” which provides additional protection above the monetary limits of a traditional policy. * Keep track of possessions with a personal property inventory to help when filing claims and keep a copy in a safe place outside the apartment. MetLife’s Life Advice Series advises that every home have a personal property inventory because it will help you determine the approximate value of your possessions, and consequently, how much insurance you need to cover your personal property.

Jimmy Mathis

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by the lake! To promote your listings contact Gail or Christy at (803) 435-8511 42 AUGUST • SEPTEMBER 2011 | LAKESIDE

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Reptiles, ducks and other wildlife are frequent at Camp Woodie in Rimini.


er name is Kate Lutrell and she is a self-proclaimed princess. She’s from Lexington, loves “being girly,” despises lizards and doesn’t care for hunting, although she likes shooting a .22-caliber rifle. It’s surprising then that the young girl, 9, was one of more than 400 kids ages 8-16 to make the trek this summer to Camp Woodie, a small outdoor preserve and educational camp located on the fine line between Rimini and Pinewood on the outskirts of Clarendon County. “No, I don’t like hunting,” Kate said matter-of-factly when asked about her favorite prey. “I like the swimming and a few other things here, but not hunting.” Camp Director Ed Paul said campers like Kate aren’t an oddity, even though most of Camp Woodie’s activities are directly related to waterfowl conservation through hunting and other outdoor activities. “Yes, we do have kids that come each year that aren’t really into hunting, but we still have activities like traditional camps, like swimming and canoeing,” Paul said. “The kids that come to us like Kate typically come with a sibling or friends, and they’ve still had a good time by the end of the week.” Kate accompanied her cousin, 9-year-old Benji Whitzner of Sarasota, Fla., to the camp for the boy’s first trip away from his home and parents. “He’s never been away to camp, so i came with him,” Kate said. “What’s funny about that is that Kate was the one most homesick of the two during the first couple of days,” Paul said, noting counselors distracted Kate from her homesickness by having her help wash Paul’s dog. “We went out and gave the dog a bath, really,” Paul said. “That put her more at ease, and she was laughing and having a good time. And then the dog slept with the girls that night.”


From explorers to princesses Camp Woodie has something for all outdoor enthusiasts Story by Robert J. Baker with photos by Ed Paul


Though Camp Woodie is co-educational, only one other girl attended during Kate’s week, which served about 40 other kids ages 8-11 from North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida. Madison Syfert, 11, learned about the camp on the Internet with her parents’ help, saying she’s always wanted to hunt like her father and older brother. “It’s really cool here,” Madison said. “(During a demonstration by a reptile expert) I got to hold a really big snake,” she said. “And I just stayed out of the way,” Kate interjected with a wild eye cocked at her new friend. Paul said while the camp encourages all kids to participate, it doesn’t force them to. “Some kids will like one thing over another, and we don’t push things on them,” Paul said. Such overbearing counseling is anathema to the camp’s ideal, which is “to perpetuate and to enlighten the natural resource education and waterfowl conservation across the state,” Paul said. “We want to show them the opportunities that await them if they choose to become avid outdoor enthusiasts.” The camp first opened in summer 1995 after its founding by the South Carolina Waterfowl Association one year earlier. Kids come each summer for one of 11 weekly sessions, which alternate roughly 46 AUGUST • SEPTEMBER 2011 | LAKESIDE

between Level 1’s camp for ages 8-11 and Level 2’s for ages 12-16. The facility’s youngest participants work through various days of 5-stand sporting clays; a three-dimensional archery trail; fishing and canoeing; high-low sporting clays; and a mud-filled tug of war. Older campers pursue Level 1 activities along with walkthrough sport clays and teel flurries. Both groups learn to use firearms safely and learn bow-shooting, making duck blinds and boxes, predator and reptile identification and bird calling. SCWA Founder and wildlife biologist David Wielicki said in 2004 that the camp is an alternative to activities that keep kids

Robert J. Baker Roark Ferguson of Reptile Adventures shows a young alligator recently at Camp Woodie.

indoors and ignoring nature. “In the old days, children grew up on farms in rural areas and were in frequent contact with nature,” he said. “Children today don’t have a chance to view wildlife and waterfowl in their natural habitats or go fishing and hunting in a safe environment. That’s what Camp Woodie offers.” In 17 years, thousands of children and adults have spent time each summer at Camp Woodie. In 2011, Paul believes more than 500 children used the camp’s myriad opportunities; a few campers even made return trips. “We don’t usually have campers come back the same summer, but just like I did, we do have the kids that come back year-afteryear,” Paul said. As many as 70 campers can be hosted each session, but the facility has managed about 40 per week this summer. In years past, children came from as far as New York and Michigan, with some kids flying to South Carolina to be picked up by camp counselors. “This year, I think our camper from farthest away was from Alabama,” Paul said. “With the economy the way it has been, some parents can send their kids when they live so far away from the camp.” Chase Rogers, 10, and Logan Bunch, 9, of Wilmington, N.C.,

joined friend Mason Holeman, 11, of Union County, N.C., at camp this year, and said they were having a good time on their third day after watching an alligator demonstration. “I found out about the camp two years ago, and I came then,” said Mason, the only boy of the group who had visited camp previously. “I never knew there was something like a hunting camp, so I was excited.” Chase said he just loves the outdoors, and that his stepmother found the camp online when looking for things Chase could do to pursue those interests. “I like to hunt doves, ducks, turkeys, deer, everything,” he said. “In two years, I’m going bear hunting with my dad and a friend of his in Canada.” Logan said his favorite part of camp was shooting the shotguns. “That was just really fun,” he said. “I would love to come back next year.” Paul said many campers do return year-after year. He should know since he was one of them. “I love the outdoors and I love this camp,” he said. “Being able to come back here each year, and now being able to direct it. It’s just a wonderful feeling.” For more information on Camp Woodie, visit


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Lakeside August - September 2011  

Lakeside August - September issue

Lakeside August - September 2011  

Lakeside August - September issue