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Contributors Greg Baker|Sam Eifling |Rhonda Jones |Austin Rhodes|Josh des|Josh es|Josh Ruffin|Matt Stone|Adam W Wa Wadding|Jenny ding|Jenny Wright

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WHINELINE Tell us, how many of those 101,000+ hits on Azziz were thumbs down? That is, from your cover of Jan. 17 issue. I’d really like to know the number of the thumbs down ratings on each of those people but Azziz and Roundtree would be the ones I’m most interested in the numbers for. I read where Joe Bowles says

how much he is relieved not to be on the Augusta Commission anymore. I bet! His lips sure must be tired after having them affixed to Billy Morris’ and Paul Simon’s butts for the past six years. to all the builders in [redacted] that loop hole for your so called subcontractors they are all spanish dont speak much english as far as i know you must have legal ID to purchase

insurance and business license.90% of them dont even have a drivers license and YOU give them work only because it puts more money in your pocket. and to the insurance provider you too are wrong. HIRE LEGAL,LOCAL I read that Wal Mart wants to “jump start” the economy by hiring more than 100,000 veterans over the next five years. “Thanks for putting your life and your ass on the line so

Wal Mart can make billion$ here’s $8 an hour.” You do know that Wal Marts CEO, Michael T. Duke made $18.1 million in 2011, don’t you? I’m not against anybody getting a job, but when you declare these jobs are aimed at veterans, isn’t that blatant discrimination? What is wrong with American orphans. Last weekend the Chronicle carried a story about a family adopting a child from

o r t e m IRIT SP Russia. They are concerned about Russia banning American adoptions of Russian children. I know France is supposed to make the best wine and Cuba the best cigars. I guess I missed the report that Russia made the best orphans. I can’t believe these people put so much lip service to helping the poor children and refuse to look in our American orphanages. (continued on page 42)

Showdown: Sentinel to have its day in court Into the Woods: Columbia County’s Greenspace Advisory Board gets dirty to map out trail Everywhere Signs: Columbia County takes traffic signs to the next level

COVER DESIGN: KRUHU Want to advertise in the Metro Spirit? 706.496.2535 or 706.373.3636



INSIDER@THEMETROSPIRIT.COM Insider is an anonymous, opinion-based examination of the hidden details of Augusta politics and personalities.




The True Cost of Doing Business With so many eyes watching Sentinel, more than one insider has whispered the words: follow the money… That’s a reference, of course, to the fact that the private probation company makes a mint charging all sorts of fees to the offenders who find themselves stuck in a system that seems perfectly designed to keep them stuck in the system. Electronic monitoring has proved particularly lucrative for Sentinel while costly for everyone else. It’s no stretch to say that it’s like those in the system are being set up to fail, and as long as the system profits from that failure, that’s all that will ever happen. Follow the money… The words are whispered because judges have a power like no other, and there’s a long-standing rumor that following this money too closely could get you the business end of a gavel. The fact that so many have taken that threat seriously for so long only makes the rumor that much more pervasive. While a local audit of the everything involving Sentinel’s dealings with the court still might not be able to follow the money far enough to make things clear, it would certainly lay bare a system ideally suited to obscure corruption, and from there we would have the date to make our assumptions. Until there’s an audit, we’ll never know the true cost of that Sentinel contract, both financially and ethically.



Things’ll Be Great When You’re Downtown

Those about town, and not just the busybodies who have nothing better to do than wonder how Augusta could be as bad as it is, are starting to think that perhaps the DDA’s Margaret Woodard might finally be vulnerable enough to be taken out. For many such a move has seemed inevitable for a very long time, yet while Woodard has been a target of general criticism, she’s always managed to avoid the particular kind of criticism that gets people sent packing. She’s likeable when she needs to be, visible when it suits her and out of the picture when its time to get anything, which seems to be a recipe for public longevity around these parts. Only right now, especially with the Segways parked, no one really seems to know just what her purpose is. Sure the DDA has meetings, but can anyone point to anything they’ve done? We don’t have parking meters. We do have trash. And we might have a buyer for the building on the corner, only it seems they’re working through a real estate agent, not the DDA. Hmm. Anyone checked what she makes lately? It’s a lot.

More to Come Not to mix metaphors or anything, but the slam dunk that appeared to be North Augusta’s stadium project is starting to look like one of those slam dunks that gets you $10,000 for making people laugh on TV. Not that there’s anything funny about plopping a $50 million project in the middle of the North Augusta riverfront. The humor comes from how, after so much agony in Augusta, North Augusta seemed to so instantly embrace it. Only now that the idea is starting to move from ambush to occupation, people over there seem to be asking some of the same questions that people were asking over here. Revenue bonds? Tax-increment financing? Drunks trying to find their way back home? At a city council meeting, representatives from the River Club subdivision told the mayor and city council that 85 percent of their homeowners were against the development, which would include a hotel, a stadium and various restaurants and apartments. In other words, they were saying send the Augusta-sized development back to Augusta and leave North Augusta for the Greewayers. While they may not speak for all North Augustans, you can bet we’ll be hearing more from them in the coming weeks. Them, and who knows how many others.







It should stand for Mixed Monopoly Arts In my piece on “Django Unchained” a couple of weeks ago, I wrote a little bit about the disconnect that can exist between the outlets and objects of one’s personal enjoyment, as opposed to how those outlets translate to other facets of the real world. Deriving pleasure from something in a vacuum is one thing — maniacally, gleefully gunning down the Covenant in the “Halo” series, for example — but part of what supposedly makes us human is the way our cognitive capacity allows us to differentiate between not just real and make-believe, but between the context of a microcosm and the context of society at large. Let me talk for a bit about a specific example. Repeat readers — again, I question your judgment — know that I’m a huge fan of combat sports, even though I throw punches the way a dystrophic hobo swats at pterodactyls, if that dystrophic hobo was also seven years old. There’s a UFC event on tonight; I’m trying to knock out most of this thing in the next five hours so I can watch it, and that’s probably influencing the subject matter a bit, not to mention the grammatical errors. Now, my appreciation for sweaty, unbridled hematoma-making — specifically that sponsored and perpetrated by the Ultimate Fighting Championship — runs counter to my personal politics. I lean, not so vehemently or rhapsodically as to be an ideologue, a bit socialist, and the UFC is one of the worst violators of that principle on the market today. The danger inherent in monopolies, I think, is one that economists of all stripes can get behind. Competition keeps the market healthy for both consumers and for businesses themselves. Different entities hawking similar yet distinguishable products force each other to constantly step up their respective games; it’s how technology, business, society and civilization itself all evolve. And there are parallel benefits for businesses and owners. Healthy competition and, admittedly, at least a niggling sense of business ethics, help keep the playing field relatively even, and prevent a monopoly, essentially — let’s call it what it is — a gradual, hostile takeover of the market. Problem is, most successful businessmen didn’t get that way by being ethical. When the UFC became firmly entrenched in the mainstream consciousness around late 2006 — in the thick of the Chuck Liddell/Matt Hughes/Rich Franklin heyday — they quickly made moves to acquire every asset under the MMA umbrella that they possibly could. Prior to this point, a Japan-based organization called PRIDE Fighting Championship had been the UFC’s primary competitor. Indeed, they had actually pre-empted the UFC, and for a long time was the entity that all hardcore mixed martial arts fans agreed boasted the superior fighters (prime-era Fedor Emelianenko, Mirko Filopovic and Wanderlei Silva among others). Due, however, to brilliantly aggressive marketing, sponsoring partnerships and, let’s face it, smart business decisions — i.e., signing fighters to exclusive contracts, something that should be a no-brainer for any organization if they don’t want to devolve into the hapless miasma of alphabet titles and nepotism that plagues modern boxing — the UFC began to gradually overtake PRIDE in popularity, and began poaching top talent like Dan Henderson, Silva, Filopovic, Antonio Nogueira and others. Eventually, in the wake of a scandal that tied PRIDE executives to the Yakuza and cost the organization its television deal, the promotion was all but dead in the water. It was bought by the UFC in March 2007, its assets dissolved and top fighters absorbed. The name was all but killed, though you can still buy their T-shirts in the store, if you’re that niche-y of a hipster.

A few months before that, the World Fighting Alliance (WFA), a California-based promotion was bought up by the UFC. You can see where this is going. In 2010, World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC) was merged with the UFC. In all fairness, the two had been owned by the same parent company (Zuffa) for some time, the WEC essentially functioning as a showcase for the lighter weight classes, and feeder organization otherwise. Now the only other game left in town — aside from various regional promotions like Shark Fights and Jungle Fight — is Bellator, an organization whose format revolves around entertaining but inconvenient tournaments, and whose biggest names are a part-time professional wrestler and a guy whose fights are basically a more economical version of Valium. In a way, this is good for fans. We get to see most of the world’s best fighters under one banner and, with very few exceptions, they fight who they’re told to fight. None of this bargaining and bickering over who gets what cut, PPV percentages, etc. And it’s not bad for fighters in some respects. Even making his UFC debut, a relatively unknown fighter is guaranteed between $10,000 and $20,000 to show, double to win. They also have corporate health insurance, a sure boon for anyone who gets punched in the head for a living. At the same time, monopolies are not empirically positive. Fighters, as long as they keep winning and/or are exciting in their losses, are guaranteed a job. That security, however, comes rife with a lack of certain economic and social liberties. The UFC has a deal with a rival sponsor to your walk-out gear? You’re not wearing it. Want to turn down a short-notice fight, or one you know you’re not ready for? Fine, but get ready to be thrown under the bus by Dana White, president and de facto public face of the UFC. I know — you’re asking yourself, and me, what the point of all this is. Fine. We are complicated animals. Americans, especially. We’re still a heavily — we proclaim — Christian nation, but we murder more of our own than any other developed country. I went to school with a very talented, fundamentalist poet. The intricacies of our society are fractal-like, a morass that grows more entangled the more we try to unwind it. I’ll reiterate: part of what makes us human is our capacity for complexity of self. We can, supposedly, derive personal pleasure from a certain act or element, while also being compassionate regarding the consequences such an act might have on others. Human beings do not, should not, simply eradicate that variable, that complication, that inconvenience. Rather, we should weigh the boons of our own sacrifice against the harm that a lack of that sacrifice would cause. We are in the midst of such a moment now.

JOSHRUFFIN, a Metro Spirit alum, is a published

journalist and poet who just received his MFA from Georgia College & State University. He was once the most un-intimidating bouncer at Soul Bar.

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The Backward Logic of Charles Rangel I am thinking he did this as a birthday tribute just for me. On January 16, my very favorite left wing Congressional whack job (since Cynthia McKinney departed) served up a rhetorical cow pie on the topic of gun control, so revealing and true to form that I am thinking of having T-shirts printed up to honor the occasion. In one brief MSNBC interview, the undisputedly dapper and unquestionably quotable Congressman Charlie Rangel (D-NY) gave us a quote so overwhelming in irony and dripping with bigotry that it would make Archie Bunker stand up and cheer. He made his point while smiling, hypocritically oblivious to the intolerance he had just spewed via satellite to television sets from coast to coast. In assessing his home state’s restrictive new gun laws, all conceived, written and approved in less than a month, he was asked if the rest of the country could be expected to follow their lead. “Well I hope so. New York is a little different and more progressive in a lot of areas than some other states and some of the southern areas have cultures that we have to overcome,” said the congressman. “Cultures that we have to overcome?” Now that is rich. You know, if Rush Limbaugh used such language to describe the destructive and violent social behaviors seen in many of the neighborhoods in Rangel’s congressional district, there would be boycott talk and more venom hurled his way than a little bit. Sadly, Rush is not here, so allow me. Congressman Rangel, as a life-long Southerner I can tell you that I am quite proud of the “culture” exhibited in the day to day life and habits of most of the neighborhoods I have called home. While no areas are perfect, I can honestly say that I have never had a murder committed near my home, or even an armed robbery. While gangs may have driven past my house, I have never noticed them, nor have my close neighbors. The Good Lord willing I will never have to draw my legally licensed and concealed gun on anyone; that just doesn’t happen much in my neck of the woods, which is one of many reasons why it is better to raise a family here, in Evans, Georgia, than it is to try and raise one in your area. Perusing a list of the most dangerous neighborhoods in America, over about a half dozen lists compiled by authorities as diverse as “Daily Finance,” ABC News and Forbes, virtually every single one is located right square in the middle of minority dominated streets (namely black or Hispanic), almost bulls-eye center within the boundaries of Democrat controlled cities. You want to talk about problems with “culture” congressman, look no further than right in your own wheelhouse. While we are all concerned about today’s youth and the sad situations that have occurred when mentally ill or evil young people commit mass murder like we saw at the Sandy Hook Elementary School, or the Aurora, Colorado, movie theater, parents in our urban centers (like your neighborhood) have been burying on average just under 2,000 murder victims a year (for the past 10 years). All killed by gang violence. Some of the worst of those killing fields are in Chicago, Detroit, New York, LA, Oakland, Washington D.C., Baltimore and Atlanta. All controlled by left-leaning local governments, and all with a history of restrictive gun control agendas. And just how is that working out for you? So while there are many aspects of “southern culture” that may need a tiny bit of adjustment, I would say we get it right on the issue of supporting private gun rights far more than our northern liberal friends, and a few of their elected brethren down South, that want to roll back access. The bottom line congressman, I am safer down here than you are up there. You are right about the need for some “culture” change in America, but it isn’t my culture that is not working out. It is yours.


The views expressed are the opinions of Austin Rhodes and do not necessarily represent the views of the publisher.








Sentinel to have its day in court

Jack Long

Having successfully driven Sentinel Offender Services out of Richmond and Columbia County’s Superior Courts, attorney Jack Long is attempting to further cripple the for-profit probation company’s ability to make a profit by asking the court to find its application of electronic monitoring unlawful. On Friday, January 25, Long is bringing four separate habeas corpus cases before Judge Danny Craig. All allege that, among other things, the petitioners have been unlawfully detained because of their inability to pay for electronic monitoring, an extra service offered by Sentinel that, like other services it provides, is paid for by the offenders themselves. Long argues that state code does not allow for the use of electronic monitoring in misdemeanor cases. Though a writ of habeas corpus is a legal action that brings an incarcerated person before a judge, thus ensuring that the person can be released if that person can show insufficient cause for detainment, one of the petitioners, Virginia Cash, was released by Judge David Watkins last week. Nevertheless, Long is including Cash in the action, contending that, since she was released on condition that she pay a fee she maintains she is unable to pay, her freedom is a formality. Watkins, who revoked the petitioners’ probations in each of the cases, has a reputation for making electronic monitoring a condition of probation as well as being unforgiving of those who can’t afford to pay for it. Because the cost of Sentinel’s services are passed on to the offenders, the extra financial burden becomes costly for them as well as for area taxpayers, who fork over $48 a day when people like Virginia Cash are locked up because they can’t afford to pay. Cash has a long history with Watkins. “The first time I went in front of him for failing a drug test, it was the very first one I ever failed,” she says. “My daddy stood up for me and tried to help me out, and he was like, ‘What do you have to say for her — she’s a drug addict.’ I thought that was uncalled for — he treats me like I’m the scum of the earth.” It’s also not the first time he’s had her locked up for 8


not being able to pay. “One time in 2010, I went in front of him and he wanted $1,000 and I said I couldn’t come up with that and he told me I’d do a year in jail,” she says. “And I did six months. Six months of my life was taken away over $1,000.” After she served the six months, she says she asked her probation officer about how they put that toward her fine, but received no answer. “I wanted to see it on paper — I just spent six months in jail,” she says. “They said it was in there, but I never got to see proof that they actually applied it.” There is little doubt that Cash has problems. She is unemployed, owes child support for her oldest child and is responsible for her youngest. She doesn’t have a stable home to go to and she admits to having addiction issues, but insists the burdens of the system she’s caught in are making it next to impossible for her to turn her life around. She finds the threats continually leveled at her freedom by her probation officers because of her inability to pay particularly disheartening. “Right before I went in and failed the drug test, which ended up being part of the reason why they took the warrant out, they were already pressing me with taking me back in front of [Watkins] because I hadn’t made a payment,” she says. “I’m like, ‘Please don’t do that,’ because I knew if I went back in front of him I was going to end up back in jail.” Not only did her probation officer threaten her with jail for not paying her fine, but she even refused to allow Cash to receive help provided to her by Judge Craig. Craig runs Problem Solving Court which attempts to help overwhelmed offenders manage some of their burdens, many of which interfere with each other. “I went in front of Judge Craig and he said, ‘I’m going to help you with this,’” she says. “He didn’t see any point in me being in jail when I just needed extra help and he told me not to worry about it, that he was going to handle it and they would be in touch in about a week or two so that I could know when to go back to misdemeanor probation.” But that never happened. “Judge Watkins refused to let him do anything like

that,” she says. “I ended up going back up in front of Judge Craig, and he told me that he didn’t know why, but he couldn’t do anything about misdemeanor probation.” Cash’s probation officer also refused to let a Problem Solving Court representative accompany her to her probation meeting. “I struggle with addiction, yes,” Cash says. “But I don’t need to be thrown in jail. I need something more than that.” In Cash’s case, as with the other three, Long is contending that Georgia code allows electronic monitoring only by the Department of Corrections, and since the Department of Corrections only handles felony probation, electronic monitoring is not allowed for misdemeanor probation. “If they wanted to make it applicable, they would have said that,” Long says. “There is no provision at all that allows specific electronic monitoring.” He is also attempting to show that, as a profit-making company, Sentinel is allowing its own financial interests to infringe upon the rights of the probationers. The costs of electronic monitoring are especially burdensome to poor offenders because, besides having to pay the $80 start-up fee and a monthly charge for the service, they are also required to provide a separate landline to allow the device to operate. The cases also allege that charging electronic monitoring fees serves only to benefit Sentinel and that the electronic monitoring is “nothing but a means of making poor individuals pay fees that inure to the benefit of Respondent Sentinel.” Though many find it hard to sympathize with those who find themselves in jail, the ultimatum given by Judge Watkins in these specific cases — either pay the electronic monitoring fee or go to jail — puts the taxpayers on the hook for serious money: for Cash, who was allowed to pay $535 or spend five months in jail, $7,200; for Clifford Hayes, who was told he had to spend eight months in jail or pay $854: $11,520. These cases are bringing a lot of the private probation issues into the courtroom, and how Craig rules could significantly alter the way probation is handled, both locally and statewide. For Sentinel in particular, the stakes are very high. 24JANUARY2013

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Into the Woods

Columbia County’s Greenspace Advisory Board gets dirty to map out trail

Greenspace Advisory Board examining trail

Members of Columbia County’s Greenspace Advisory Board took to the woods last week to weigh in on the proposed design of the section of the Euchee Creek Greenway Trail intended to connect the only two existing sections of the trail — Grovetown’s trail and the section built by the developers of the Canterbury Farms subdivision off of Chamblin Road. Starting at the proposed trailhead at the Wrightsboro Road bridge over Euchee Creek in Grovetown, the board members accompanied Tom Dunaway, engineering division manager with WR Toole Engineers, and members of Columbia County’s


Planning and Zoning and Engineering departments deep into the woods, following the little flags Dunaway had laid on a previous trip. The flags represented the middle of the 10-foot-wide trail that everyone tried to envision. The $20 million project is the Greenspace Advisory Board’s main focus, and according to board chairman Bill Corder, it has already been in negotiations with a landowner on the other side of Canterbury Farms. “We’ve got verbal agreements to get from there all the way out to I-20,” he said. “That will be our next project after this one, and we’re actively trying to get some grant money to make it happen.” Eventually, the Euchee Creek Greenway Trail will stretch from Grovetown all the way to Riverside Park, some 23 miles away. Though a $250,000 grant from the Department of Transportation made the mapped out section a possibility, it was the DOT’s decision to bring the Grovetown trail under the new Wrightsboro Road bridge a few years ago that really kick started the project. “If we had to try to figure out how to get our trail under Wrightsboro Road — it just wasn’t feasible,” Corder said. “When that happened, which was a year or two after Euchee Creek trail got put in at Canterbury Farms, we realized we could make this connection, so we put the priority here so we could connect to something that was already existing.” Thanks to a wide, cleared sewer easement, the beginning of the new trail section seemed fairly conventional, though the straight shot proved to be misleading. Instead of following the wide, cleared path, the little flags almost immediately veered off into the woods. Dunaway said he

wanted to avoid running the trail down the middle of the sewer easement in the event the water department would have to conduct maintenance on the pipe. Besides that, hikers and bikers crave shade even that close to the trailhead. However, because of the cost of clearing away the trees and undergrowth and the desire for a flowing trail, Dunaway was careful not to move the trail too far into the woods… or too close to the creek, which has a buffer they want to avoid. With the advisory board signing off on the trail, wetlands delineators will come through and then a survey crew will map out the trail and send it to the Corps of Engineers for approval. Corder said the corps doesn’t normally make a lot of comments, though it will still take them a couple of months to evaluate the plan. “They’ll look at the overall impact and decide if they feel like there are any impacts to wetlands and if that needs to be compensated for,” Corder said. “If you’re impacting a lot of wetlands, they may say, ‘Well, we really think you ought to mitigate,’ which basically means paying a fee to another land owner to preserve some wetlands permanently to make up for the fact that we had to fill some in.” Wetlands, however, aren’t necessarily as obvious as the muddy bog that captured the county’s utility vehicle and sent everyone leapfrogging through the axel-deep mud. “Some wetlands are what people think of, and some of them are weed-choked, overgrown rat holes,” Corder said. “But it’s a federal requirement that doesn’t distinguish — they’re all protected equally.” As a civil and environmental engineer, Corder has plenty of experience with this type of project. Though the trail is a time-consuming, expensive proposition, planner Charlie Andrews said it helps developers sell their homes and improves the area at large. “It really helps out with the aesthetics and with trying to sell lots and improve the quality of life,” he said. “Once this middle piece connects into the Grovetown portion and Canterbury Farms, we’re going to have over two miles of continuous trails, so when people look to sell their property or to sell lots, they’re going to be able to maintain that value because of the proximity to the trail.” And according to Dunaway, field-fitting the trail to the environment allows them to avoid certain trees they think will be valuable to the project. He marked these trees with ribbon and said he will walk the trail with the surveyor to make sure each tree they want protected remains protected. After blasting the utility vehicle out of the mud and then abandoning it when the woods got too thick, the Greenspace group stumbled through anthills and trudged by a beaver dam for another 40 minutes until it eventually caught up with the end of the Canterbury Farm’s portion of the trail. It happened to be on the other side of the creek, but after imagining so much trail, it wasn’t all that difficult to imagine the bridge that would connect the two. “It’s going to be a nice trail,” Corder said, nodding his head slightly. “And it’s about time, too.” 24JANUARY2013



Everywhere Signs

Columbia County takes traffic signs to the next level Sign similar to Columbia County’s dynamic message sign

Columbia County is moving forward with some cutting edge traffic signs that will put the county at the forefront of traffic management. “These will be the first of this type in the state,” says traffic engineer Glen Bollinger. “There are some like it around the Atlanta metro area, but nobody’s actually doing it quite like we are.” The permanent dynamic message signs are full-color matrix signs similar to some of the automated billboards around town. Not only will they be able to scroll traffic alerts, but they will be able to post pictures for Amber Alerts and other law enforcement information. The eight signs — three along Washington Road, three along Belair and one each on both Flowing Wells and Columbia roads — are a component of Columbia County’s Intelligent Transportation System, which helps move traffic efficiently through the county. “The signs work with the adaptive traffic signal system, which tries to move traffic as quickly as it can, and the priority control component, where we can give emergency vehicles green lights when they need them to get ambulances and fire trucks through the traffic lights,” Bollinger says. “We’re plugging in all this stuff, and it’s just one big system that will keep people moving around the county as quickly as it can.” Because the signs are slated for state roads, the county needed to get state approval before going out for bid. “We’re looking at a couple of different models,” Bollinger says. “One of them is going to be around a 4x8 and the other size would be around a 5x10.” Funded through the transportation money carved out of the county’s SPLOST revenue, each sign is projected to cost around $30,000. “It’s not just small town USA anymore,” Bollinger says. “We’re pushing tons of traffic all over Columbia County every day. We’ve got so much traffic and people moving around that this is the kind of thing that’s very important. It’s going to keep the public knowing what’s going on.” The Intelligent Traffic System has been operating in Columbia County since early 2011 and has been expanding ever since. Currently, the system has 112 cameras covering 28 intersections, which are all visible on a wall of state of the art monitors at the county’s Traffic Control Center. The dynamic message signs are a logical next step, allowing traffic engineers to target specific messages to specific signs in real time. “We’ll have somebody in our traffic control center who can update the messages live and as instantly as possible,” Bollinger says. “We might have a message at Belair and I-20 that’s different than what we’ve got out on Washington Road.” Soon, Bollinger says, the same advisories will also be delivered directly to Twitter and Facebook subscribers, so drivers will know what’s going on along their travel route or what travel times are from point to point. The signs, mounted on poles off the roadway, will communicate through the county’s new broadband fiber network, and though the state has obvious restrictions about advertising, Bollinger says messages could certainly let people know about county events that are coming, since they wouldn’t be advertising the event, but would instead by directing information about traffic problems associated with the events like the annual Christmas Parade. Given the lengthy bid process, Bollinger expects the signs to be operational by fall. 24JANUARY2013




America's Greatest Big Band Musical Show


I, Robot A no nostalgic, g patriotic, upbeat musicall revu revue featuring g the music of Glenn Mill Gl Miller, Benny Goodman, The A d Andrews Sisters and more! 19 on stage: g Big g Band with six singers and some high-flying sing g y g swin swing i n g dancing! d i !

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Thursday, Feb 14 at 7pm Tickets: 745 Broad Street, Augusta, GA Call: 706-722-8341 Online: Tour and Event Info: &



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The Prelude

It’s undeniable. The technology sector in Augusta is the booming. If you are into nuclear, Augusta can boast about Plant Vogtle being the first new nuclear plant in the U.S. in 30 years. If the military-industrial complex is more your cup of tea, there’s the super-sized and supersecret NSA facility coming online at the fort. Do you like ObamaCare? Well, our medical community is spending millions to transform our health IT infrastructure to comply with new mandates and stay competitive in the new world order. And may I be one of the first to welcome the newest member of Augusta’s technology community, Intermedix, who earlier this month announced the acquisition of our own ESi. (We all hope the IronMan sponsorship was part of the deal.) Consider, though, that all this might be just a prelude to the true renaissance of Augusta’s industrial sector. Suppose we are just building the foundation for others? Who might these future visionaries be? For starters, I would point to the 4H Club Bodacious Builders out of Columbia County. The Bodacious Builders are a group of sixth and seventh graders who came together from five different middle schools: Grovetown, Riverside, Stallings Island, Harlem and Columbia. This Saturday, they will be competing in the state championship of the Georgia First LEGO League. The First LEGO League is a robotics program that utilizes science and technology to bring together middle-school-aged kids and challenge them creatively solve problems based on realworld issues. The competition is made up of three components: 1. Build an autonomous robot using engineering concepts. 2. Research and solve a real-world problem based on a challenge theme. 3. Present their research and solutions. I met with this group last week down at the as they were working with the ubermentor Chris Williamson of CSRA Makers. (As many of you know, Chris is a hardened veteran of robotics competitions and robot wars. His SpacePRIDE team was the only team to meet all requirements in last year’s NASA Centennial Challenge Sample Return Rover competition.) To address the First LEGO challenge theme, the Bodacious Builders attacked old age and devised a system to dispense medication for senior citizens. While they successfully navigated the regional and super-regional competitions, the presentation still needed something to make it really pop. Synergy was in the air as the Bodacious Builders utilized CSRA Maker’s 3D printer to create a model of their invention. Will it be enough to push these aspiring innovators up the leaderboard? In the long run, it really doesn’t matter. This team has already demonstrated creativity, teamwork and a desire to win. Stick with that and great things will continue to happen. Best of luck this weekend! Attention to all you other robot innovators: is sponsoring a SumoBot League with the first competition in April. For the uninitiated, this sport involves two robots attempting to push each other out of a circle. If you are interested, there is also a four-week Mini Sumo class at starting in February. Space is limited. Finally, I promised Chris I’d give a shout out to this year’s SpacePRIDE team. They are starting to gear up for this year’s competition. He is sill looking for a team sponsor, and I think the hood space on the robot is still available. So don’t delay in getting in touch with him! Until next time, I’m off the grid @gregory_a_baker. GREGORY A. BAKER, PH.D, is vice president and chief rocket scientist for CMA, which provides information technology services to CSRA businesses and nonprofits. 24JANUARY2013



By Elizabeth C. Gorski / Edited by Will Shortz 91 Show some irritation 93 See 114-Across 97 Published 98 Chorus after “All in favor” 100 Road sign that may elicit a groan 101 Used, as a dinner tray 103 Dance instruction 107 Ditch-digging, e.g. 108 ___-Seltzer 112 Hip 114 With 93-Across, 34-Down and 48-Down, what each line in the center square should do 117 Like some unexciting bids 118 One who’s beyond belief? 119 Revolutionary figure? 120 High-hat 121 Tennis Hall-of-Famer born in Bucharest 122 Get ready to ride, with “up” Down 1 Women’s suffrage leader Carrie Chapman ___ 2 Workplace welfare org. 3 Workplace rights org. 4 “Eat at ___” (classic sign) 5 Unlock, to a poet 6 One of two photos in an ad 7 Where Ponce de León died 8 Bernstein’s “Candide,” for one 9 Black ___ 10 Stay fresh 11 Pitcher’s datum 12 Friendly introduction? 13 Parts of pounds 14 Short cut 15 Leaves out of the bag? 16 Bone connected to the oblique cord 17 Top row 18 Ancient Greek school 19 Start of an agreement that’s not really an agreement 24 Muslim leader 29 Light side 31 Tuscan export 32 Prie-___ (kneeling bench) 34 See 114-Across 36 Gershwin’s “The ___ Love”

37 38 39 40 41 43 44 48 49 50 52 53 55 57

Suffix with zillion Fed. agents Price abbr. Coach Parseghian Trail Singer Dion Hitch See 114-Across Snake along Oil-rich land H.S. senior’s exam, once Division politique Playwright Fugard Beginning of ___ (watershed moment) 62 “Yeah, that’ll happen” 63 Many a Rubens subject 64 Bottom row 65 Parisian schools 67 Sports car feature 74 Greenish shade 75 79-Down’s doings 76 Slippery 77 Mercedes models 79 Worshiper with a pentagram 81 German pronoun 82 Steamed bun in Chinese cookery 83 E.M.T. training 84 Drought-prone 85 Newspapers 88 Dates 91 Donnybrooks 92 Mete out 94 Co-star of “The Stunt Man” 95 “There Is ___ …” (song by the Cure) 96 Monet’s Dutch subjects 99 Laundry problem 102 The Wright brothers’ home 104 “Hairspray” role 105 Some e-mail attachments 106 Diamonds, e.g. 108 Somewhat 109 Impart 110 Bow attachment 111 Price to play 113 Commandment adjective 115 Hand-held organizer, in brief 116 Hollywood’s home: Abbr.













































107 115



















116 119



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45 48



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Across 1 Sting 7 Makes a love connection? 14 Like Big Mama Thornton’s “Hound Dog” 20 Inclined 21 Mollify 22 Limestone variety 23 Middle row 25 Ones getting hit on at salsa clubs? 26 File extensions 27 Gen. Bradley 28 Sledge who sang “When a Man Loves a Woman” 30 Master 31 Stretched, in a way 33 Nesting place for a bird 35 Horned Frogs’ sch. 36 Like magic squares 42 Investor’s bottom line 44 “Spider-Man” director Sam 45 Numerical prefix 46 Eco-conscious 47 Like letters marked “Return to sender” 49 Pizza topper 51 Author of “Unto the Sons” 54 Poison hemlock or Queen Anne’s lace 56 When the Festival de Cannes opens 58 “Peace ___ hand” 59 Comic actor Jacques 60 Company closing? 61 Silent screen star Naldi 62 Winging it? 66 Back door 68 Lift 69 “I’m impressed!” 70 Woodstock artist Guthrie 71 P.T.A.’s concern: Abbr. 72 Atlanta Braves’ div. 73 Knee-length hip-hop shirts 78 Mother who was a Nobelist 80 Skeleton section 86 Rotating surveying tool 87 Hollywood’s Patricia and others 89 “It Happened One Night” director 90 Abruptly calls off plans, say
















According to Foster, the Sheriff’s Department is using the infrastructure to transport all their voice information, including 911. “It has performed flawlessly,� Kennedy says of the marriage of the radio system and the broadband network. “You can’t separate one without tying it to the other, and that’s been good publicity.� With that first major success out of the way, Foster has been busy connecting other county offices to the network. “We’re kind of spending a lot of time with our community anchor institutions getting them up and running and trying to educate them on what they can do with all this technology,� Foster says. “We’re in the process of connecting some water utility facilities as well as connecting the fire department as they transition over to the county.� Another early connector was the Harlem Library, and branch Manager Amanda Cash has noticed a big difference with the wireless internet. “It runs 24/7, and before we had some issues with the wireless not working correctly and being really slow and lagging,� she says. “But since they switched us, it actually moves a lot faster and works so much better.� It works so good, in fact, that it’s not unusual to see area kids sitting on the steps with their laptops after hours taking advantage of the wireless internet signal. One of the common misconceptions is that the broadband infrastructure provides free internet for the entire county, which Kennedy says couldn’t be further from the truth. As what’s called a middle mile provider, the county has made sure it is not directly competing with private business, and free wireless internet would definitely be interfering with the marketplace. “The only place we’re really bringing it into is government institutions, fire stations, the Sheriff’s Department and the parks,� Kennedy says. “If we were providing that last mile to the public, you could see how that would put us in
















A small school can make a big difference. direct competition with private companies. We’d rather have a relationship with them where it’s complementary as opposed to competing.� That’s because, as that middle mile provider, the county can lease space to all sorts of providers, which is how it plans to use the network to do what Kennedy said — make the county better while at the same time making it better to sell. As far as getting the different buildings connected, Kennedy says they’ve encountered nothing more than the usual problems, and the more buildings they bring online, the easier it seems to get. Foster especially has been trying to face this transition period with calm. “You don’t want to get spread so thin and have so many things going on that you can’t focus,� he says. “You’ve got to be able to manage your resources and also manage your problems.� Though Foster basically oversees the entire program with only one other employee, he does utilize several outside contractors to help with specific issues. “Right now, we’re trying to minimize our overhead, but we’re evaluating to hopefully get additional personnel,� he says. “But we don’t exactly know what personnel we need and we don’t want tire hire someone just to be hiring them.� Recently, the county has been excited by hospital talk. It wouldn’t be the first time a hospital considered a Columbia County location, but it would be the first time that it considered one with the broadband network in place. “That’s the whole purpose of putting this infrastructure out there,� Foster says. “It’s so people can get access and therefore not spend as much money in build out so they can provide excellent service at a minimal cost long-term and actually bring in jobs and bring in help to our local economy.�


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“Thunderball” shows at GRUA’s Summerville campus, University Hall, at 7 p.m., Monday, Jan. 28, as part of the spring film series. GRU faculty members Dr. Craig Albert and Matthew Buzzell will present an analysis of the film in conjunction with their course, “James Bond and the Cold War.” General admission $3; free with JagCard. Visit




Tour of Athens with Edward Rice will be offered as a Members’ Day Trip, Thursday, Jan. 24. Travel to Athens with local ar tist Edward Rice to meet his ar tist friends, including lunch at The National and a trip to the Georgia Museum of Ar t. Reservations required. Call 706-8283803. “Art Now: Kendall Messick” will be presented at the Morris Museum of Art, 6 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 31. Visit Corks & Canvas painting classes for adults 21 and over are held every Tuesday and Thursday night beginning at 7 p.m. and lasting 2-3 hours. Painting materials provided. Bring your own wine and clothes to paint in. $30; $25 with military I.D. Pre-registration required. Call 706-8680990, email or visit Day of Art, hosted by the North Augusta Artists Guild, is each Tuesday from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Arts and Heritage Center and includes a group of artists painting in the center who will answer questions or allow visitors to join in. Call 803-441-4380 or visit


“Reflections on Water in American Painting” shows through Sunday, Feb. 10, at the Morris Museum of Art. Call 706-724-7501 or visit Local sculptor Brian Rust exhibits his work at Sacred Heart Cultural Center until Feb. 24. Call 706-826-4700 or visit sacredheartaugusta. org. Aiken Retro Exhibition will be on display at the Aiken Center for the Arts through Feb. 25. Call 803-641-9094 or visit aikencenterforthearts. org. “Ebony Legacy Revisited” will be on display at the Lucy Craft Laney Museum of African-American History through Feb. 28. Adults $5, seniors $3, kids $2. Call 706-724-3576 or visit lucycraftlaneymuseum. com. Katie Harris, photographer and sculptor from Appling, will display her exhibit, “Blissful Fullness-Empty Freedom” at the Gertrude Herbert Institute of Art through March 1. Nonmembers $5; members free. Call 706-722-5495 or visit 24JANUARY2013

Sporting art exhibit will be on display at the Willcox in Aiken through March. Call 803-648-1898 or visit

IV production, “Beethoven.” Concerto will be held 6 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 26. Visit

“Tying the Knot,” a display of wedding dresses and accessories from the late 1800s to the 1960s, will be on exhibit at the Augusta Museum of History until May 2013. Call 706-722-8454 or visit

“Steel Magnolia” will be presented by Joshua Scott and Meghan Linsey, the winners of CMT’s “Can You Duet?” at 8 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 26. $40. Call 803-276-6264 or visit

“Blast From the Past” is a new exhibit currently on display at Augusta Museum of History in downtown Augusta to celebrate the museum’s 75th anniversary. Call 706-722-8454 or visit “Local Legends” is a permanent exhibit highlighting Augusta notables on display at the Augusta Museum of History. Call 706-722-8454 or visit “Protect and Serve,” an exhibit highlighting the stories of CSRA law enforcement officers, is on display at the Augusta Museum of History. Call 706-722-8454 or visit “Delightful Decanters” is a temporary exhibit on display at the Augusta Museum of History featuring colorful bottles used to sell products as late as the 1970s. Call 706-722-8454 or visit


Irish pianist John O’Connor will be featured in “Winter Nocturne” at the Etherredge Center in Aiken, 7 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24. $20; students free. Call 803-641-3305 or visit The Swingin’ Medallions will perform at the Newberry Opera House, 8 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24. Call 803-276-6264 or visit “Flip Side: A Night of Accoustic Music” will be presented at The Stables in Aiken, 7-10 p.m., Friday, Jan. 25. Call 803-648-1181 or visit Venice Baroque Orchestra will be presented by the Harry Jacobs Chamber Music Society at the Grover C. Maxwell Performing Arts Theatre, 7:30 p.m., Friday, Jan. 25. Adults $25, school-aged kids $7. Call 706-667-4100 or visit Pianist Lili Bogdanova will be featured at the Jabez S. Hardin Performing Arts Theatre in a Columbia County Orchestra Masterworks

The Salvation Army School of the Performing Arts holds classes each Tuesday. Included is instruction in piano, drums, guitar, voice and brass. Call 706-364-4069 or visit Irish music will be performed live at the Bean Baskette coffee shop in Evans 7:30 p.m., every Thursday night. Featuring Lillie Morris, and Mike and Joanne Hay. Call 706-447-2006. Sunday Brunch Piano with John Vaughn will be held 11 a.m.-1 p.m. at The Willcox in Aiken. Call 803-648-1898 or visit


Author Visit with L. Colonel (Ret.) Bill Heaton, who will talk about and sign copies of his book “Once There Was an America,” is Thursday, Jan. 24, from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Headquarters Branch Library. Call 706-821-2600 or visit Author Visit with Katherine Scott Crawford, author of “Keowee Valley,” will be held at the Aiken Public Library, 3 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 26. Call 803-642-7575 or visit Mark T. Walker Book Signing will be held at the Lucy Craft Laney Museum of Black History, 5 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 26. Visit Maxwell Morning Book Club, featuring a discussion of J.K Rowling’s “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone,” is Thursday, Jan. 31, from 10 a.m.-noon at the Maxwell Branch Library. Call 706-793-2020 or visit Nook tutorials at Barnes and Noble in the Augusta Mall are each Saturday beginning at noon, followed by a Nookcolor tutorial at 12:30 p.m. Free. Call 706-737-0012 or visit Poetry Matters is accepting entries through March 23 for their annual poetry contest. Cash prizes will be given out. Categories are middle and high school, adults, and seniors. Visit AUGUSTA’S INDEPENDENT VOICE SINCE 1989




Dance & Dessert, presented by the Davidson Fine Arts Dance Department, will be held at Davidson Fine Arts School is 7 p.m., Thursday-Friday, Jan. 24-25, and features student dance troupes and soloists as well as beverages and desserts. $12, adults; $10, seniors and military; $8, children and students; $6, Davidson students. Tickets will be on sale in the school’s media center or visit davidsonfinearts. org. Saturday Night Dance with live music is each Saturday night at the Fraternal Order of the Eagles Post 1197 from 8:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m. $5. Call 706-495-3219. Karaoke is held every Friday night at the American Legion Post 205 on Highland Road. Call 706-495-3219. Belly Dance Class is held every Tuesday at 6 p.m. at Euchee Creek Branch Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-556-0594 or visit Augusta International Folk Dance Club meets Tuesday nights from 7:30-9:30 p.m. at the Augusta Ballet Studio on 2941 Walton Way. No partners needed. First visit free. Call 706-399-2477. Christian Singles Dance, a smoke-, alcohol- and drug-free event for those ages 40 and over, is each Saturday night at the Ballroom Dance Center in Evans. Dance lessons start at 7 p.m., and the dance begins at 8 p.m. No partners needed. Members $8, guests $10. Call 706854-8888 or visit Zumba with Sohailla is held every Saturday from 10-11 a.m. at the Ballroom Dance Center in Evans. Call 706-421-6168 or visit


Auditions for John Steinbeck’s “Of Mice and Men,” a production of the ASU/GRU theatre department, are Monday, Jan. 28, from 5-8 p.m. and Tuesday, Jan. 29, from 7-9 p.m. at the Summerville campus’ Washington Hall, room 242. Parts are available for nine men and one woman. Email “The Barber of Seville” will be presented at the Newberry Opera


House, 8 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 31. $45, $35. Dinner option $40 extra. Call 803-276-6264 or visit Set crew needed for Fort Gordon Dinner Theatre production of “Legally Blonde: The Musical,” 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday-Saturday, until March 1. Tools will be provided. Email Auditions for Enopion Theatre Company’s production of “The Story of Noah and His Great Big Gopher Boat,” which will show in March, are going on now by appointment. Parts are available for men and women 18 years and older. Call 706-771-7777 or visit


“Thunderball” shows at GRUA, in University Hall, 7 p.m., Monday, Jan. 28. GRU faculty members Dr. Craig Albert and Matthew Buzzell will present an analysis of the film in conjunction with their course, “James Bond and the Cold War.” General admission $3; free with JagCard. Visit

“Up Yonder” comedy show with Karen Morgan and Vic Henley will be presented at the Newberry Opera House, 8 p.m., Friday, Jan. 25. $22.50. Call 803-276-6264 or visit Deli Night will be held at the Augusta Jewish Community Center 7 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 26. Visit “Faith and the Arts” will be presented at the Newberry Opera House at 3 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 27. $5. Call 803-276-6264 or visit Friends of the Augusta Library annual meeting and membership drive will be held at the Headquarters Branch, 6:30 p.m., Monday, Jan. 28. Free and open to the public. Call 706-821-2600 or visit Antiques in the Heart of Aiken Preview Party will be held 8 a.m.-10 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 31. Call 803-641-9094.

“Searching for Sugar Man” shows Tuesday, Jan. 29, at 6:30 p.m. at the Headquarters Branch Library. Free. Call 706-821-2600 or visit ecgrl. org.

Whiskey Road Fox Hunt will take place in Aiken starting Wednesday, Jan. 30-Feb. 7. There will be five hunts and a variety of social functions including a hunt ball, gourmet breakfasts, tailgates and cocktail parties. Call 803-646-0123.

“The Projectionist” will be screened with the filmmaker, Kendall Messick at The Morris Museum, 6 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 31. Music and cocktails in the galleries to follow. Free. Visit

Weekly Wine Tastings at Vineyard Wine Market in Evans are held 4:306:30 p.m. Fridays, and 1-6 p.m. Saturdays. Call 706-922-9463 or visit

“Won’t Back Down” will show at the North Augusta Public Library, 6:459 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 31. Call 803-642-7575 or visit


Special Events

Deadline to enter the Messy Closet Contest, sponsored by the Professional Organizers of Augusta in honor of Get Organized Month, is Thursday, Jan. 24, at 5 p.m. The winner will be chosen Friday, Jan. 25, and will receive a full closet makeover. Email poa_augusta@yahoo. com. Casino Royale, a semi-formal casino night presented by the Graduate SGA for university students, will be held at the Augusta Museum of History, 7-10 p.m., Friday, Jan. 25. Bring student ID to participate. Visit

Mobile Mammography Screenings will be held 8 a.m.-3 p.m. the following dates and locations: Thursday, Jan. 24 at University Hospital; Friday, Jan. 25 at Walgreens on Wrightsboro Road; Tuesday, Jan. 29 at SRS, Area B; Wednesday, Jan. 30 at Lamar Medical Center. Appointment required. Call 706-774-4149 or 866-774-4141. “Medieval Mental Health Questions: Are They Different From Current Mental Health Questions?” lecture will be given at GRU, noon-1 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24. Call 706-721-3444. Bariatric Seminar will be held 6-7 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24, at Doctors Hospital. Focuses on exploring options for medical weight loss. Drs. Michael Blaney and Darren Glass will speak. Free, but pre-registration required. Call 706-651-4343 or visit




Baby 101, a class focusing on newborn development and care, will be offered at Doctors Hospital 7-9:30 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24. Call 706651-2229 or visit Introduction to Infant CPR will be held at University Hospital 7-8:30 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24. Free, but registration required. Call 706-774-2825 or visit Weight Loss Surgery Seminar will be held at the GHSU Alumni Center, 7 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24. Call 706-721-2609 or visit Fresh Start Smoking Cessation Class will be held in the University Hospital Cafeteria 6-7 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 29. Registration required. Call 706-774-8094. More to Life: Your Emotional Well-Being will be offered at the Lighthouse Baptist Church, 6 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 29. Free, light dinner. Call 803-6415000 or visit Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation program covers topics such as coronary artery disease, heart attack and CHF at the University Hospital Heart and Vascular Institute. Program begins 8:25 and 9:25 a.m., and 1:55 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 30. Will continue each Wednesday at 8:15 and 9:15 a.m., and 1:45 p.m. Call 706-774-3278 or visit Infant CPR Training offered at the GHS Medical Center 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 30. Call 706721-9351 or visit Happiest Baby on the Block, a class to teach techniques to calm a fussy baby, will be held at Doctors Hospital, 7-9 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 31. Call 706-651-2229 or visit Tai Chi for Boomers is held at 6 p.m. every Tuesday and Thursday. Call 706-394-0590, email sbeasley@ or visit augustameditation. com/taichi.html. Stress Management Classes are held at the University Hospital Heart & Vascular Institute at 8:15 a.m., 9:15 a.m. and 1:45 p.m. each Wednesday. Call 706-774-3278 or visit Childbirth Education Class will be held at the Georgia Health Sciences Medical Center 6:30 p.m. each Wednesday in January. Pre-registration required. Call 706-721-9351 or visit georgiahealth. org. Multiple Sclerosis and Parkinson’s Disease Aquatics Class meets every Monday and Friday at noon at the Wilson Family Y. Members, free; non-members, $3. Pre-registration required. Call Claudia Collins at 706-922-9664 or visit

Adapted Special Populations classes offered at the Wilson Family Y. Members $10; non-members $20. Call 706-922-9664 or visit Adapted Wii Special Populations available by appointment at the Wilson Family Y, and feature individual half-hour classes for physically and developmentally challenged individuals of all ages. Members, $10; non-members, $20. Call 706-9229662 or visit Living With Diabetes, a program designed to teach skills needed to manage diabetes, is offered at Trinity Hospital. Physician referral required. Call 706-481-7535 or visit


Sleep Apnea Support Group will meet 7-9 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24 at the Resource Library at Georgia Health Sciences Children’s Medical Center. Call 706-721-0793 or visit Weight Loss Surgery Seminar will be held at the GHSU Alumni Center, 7 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24. Call 706-721-2609 or visit Recovery Support Group meets 7:30 p.m. Sundays and Fridays. Call 706-855-2419. Burn Support Group meets every Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. at Doctors Hospital’s Lori Rogers Nursing Library, JMS Building. All burn survivors, and their families and friends are welcome. Call Tim Dorn at 706-651-6660 or visit Moms Connection, a weekly support group for new mothers, is held 1-2 p.m., each Tuesday. All moms and babies welcome. Free. Call 706-721-9351 or visit Narcotics Anonymous meets Fridays and Sundays at 7:30 p.m. at Trinity Hospital of Augusta. Visit AA meets every Sunday and Wednesday at 7:15 p.m. at Aiken Regional Medical Centers’ Aurora Pavilion, and includes an open discussion. Call 800322-8322 or visit Beyond the Bars is a support group for those with incarcerated loved ones. Call 706-855-8636. Diabetes Youth Support Group meets quarterly. Call 706-868-3241 or visit Cardiac Support Group meets three times a year. Call 706-774-5864 or visit Families Who Have Lost a Baby Support Group is offered by GHSU. Call 706-721-8299 or visit

Heart Attack and Stroke Prevention Orientation is every Monday at 6 p.m. and Tuesday at 2 p.m. at University Hospital’s Heart & Vascular Institute (Classroom 3). Call 706-774-5548 or visit

Adult Sexual Assault and Rape Support Group provides group counseling at University Hospital for those who have experienced sexual assault, incest, rape or childhood sexual abuse. Call 706-724-5200 or visit

Joint Efforts, presented by Trinity Hospital of Augusta, meets from 11-11:45 a.m. every Thursday at Augusta Bone and Joint, and features a free seminar about knee and hip pain, treatments, medication, food and exercise. Call 706-481-7604 or visit

Alcoholics Anonymous is a support group for those who wish to stop drinking. Call 706-860-8331.

Infant CPR Anytime Learning Program is held at 6:30 p.m. every Thursday at the first floor information desk (west entrance) of Georgia Health Sciences University. Visit Adapted Evaluation, a 30-minute initial and annual evaluation including medical history and water assessment, is offered at the Wilson Family Y. $25. 20 METROSPIRITAUGUSTA’S INDEPENDENT VOICE SINCE 1989

Call 706-922-9664 or visit

Gamblers Anonymous is a support group for those who wish to stop gambling. Call 800-313-0170. Lupus Support Group meets at the Headquarters Branch Library. Call 706-394-6484.


Computer Boot Camp Part I is Thursday, January 24, from 10 a.m.-3:30 p.m. at the Columbia County Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-8631946 or visit 24JANUARY2013


Beginning Word I computer class is Thursday, Jan. 24, from 11 a.m.noon at the Appleby Branch Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-736-6244 or visit Craft Resumes That Get the Interview! will be held at GRU, 5-6 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24. Visit Introduction to Excel computer class is Thursday, Jan. 24, from 6-7:30 p.m. at the Wallace Branch Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-722-6275 or visit

We can’t guarantee you’ll find a vintage bug, but you’ll probably find something interesting during the preview days for the Salvation Army Auto Auction, which are Wednesday-Friday, Jan. 30-Feb. 1, from 8 a.m.-6 p.m. at the Greene Street office. The auction is Saturday, Feb. 2, at 10 a.m. and proceeds benefit the Salvation Army’s free drug and alcohol rehabilitation program. Visit

Financial Aid Workshop will be offered at USC-Aiken, 6:30 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24. Call 803-641-3476. “Money Makes Me Crazy: Your Guide to Making Sense of It All” financial workshop will be presented at First Baptist Church Augusta, 9 a.m.-noon, Saturday, Jan. 26. Individuals $25; couples $35. Call 706860-2490 or email Civil War lecture series will be hosted by the Aiken County Historical Museum, 7 p.m., Mondays, starting Jan. 28. $5. Call 803-642-2015 or visit “The War Between the States” lecture will be given at the Aiken County Historical Museum, 7 p.m., Monday, Jan. 28. Visit Resume Writing and Interview Tips, led by MBA Jackie Brown, is Tuesday, Jan. 29, from 6-7:30 p.m. at the Headquarters Branch Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-821-2600 or visit ecgrl. org. Resumes with World Templates, a two-session course, is Wednesdays, Jan. 30 and Feb. 6, at 6 p.m. at the Diamond Lakes Branch Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-772-2432 or visit Computer Boot Camp Part II is Thursday, January 31, from 10 a.m.3:30 p.m. at the Columbia County Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-863-1946 or visit Intermediate Spanish Language Class is each Monday from 2:30-4 p.m. at Friedman Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-7366758 or visit Beginner’s Spanish Language Class is each Monday from 4-5 p.m. at Friedman Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-736-6758 or visit Free Tutoring for all ages, offered by ASU’s Literacy Center, is available by appointment Monday-Thursday, from 4-8 p.m., at the center at 1401 Magnolia Drive. Appointments required. Call 706-737-1625 or visit Guided tours of 1797 Ezekiel Harris House offered by appointment only Tuesday-Friday, and Saturday 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Last tours of the day begin at 4 p.m. Adults, $2; children, $1. Call 706-722-8454 or visit GED Classes are held Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5:30-8:30 p.m. at the Headquarters Branch Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706821-2600 or visit English as a Second Language (ESL) classes are offered every Tuesday from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at Headquarters Branch Library. Call 706-821-2600 or visit Fort Gordon Toastmasters meets 11:30 a.m. each Wednesday in the Organizational Conference Room (Fish Bowl) on Fort Gordon Army base. Open to public. Visit Adult Hebrew Class is taught at Congregation Children of Israel at 10:30 a.m. every Thursday. Email or visit The Joy of Signing meets every Thursday from 10:30-11:30 a.m. at the Headquarters Branch Library. Call 706-821-2600 or visit ecgrl. org. Computer classes are offered every Thursday at 6 p.m. at the Wallace Branch Library. Call 706-722-6275 or visit Augusta Museum of History in downtown Augusta is open ThursdaySaturday 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Sunday 1-5 p.m. Closed Monday-Wednesday. Adults $4, seniors $3, kids 6-18 $2, children 5 and under free. Call 706-722-8454 or visit 24JANUARY2013

Historic Trolley Tour of Augusta boards at the Augusta Museum of History at 2 p.m., Saturdays. See historic sites and hear spooky legends. $2, including admission to the museum. Reservations required 24 hours in advance. Call 706-722-8454 or visit augustaga. org.


Grits ‘n’ Grins will meet at 5:30 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24, at O’Charley’s to create handmade baby blankets, hats and scarves to be given out as Christmas gifts to newborns up to age 12 through Salvation Army programs. Beginner materials provided for those who interested in learning to knit, crochet or loom. Call 706-434-3185 or email or Soup Kitchen will be held 8 a.m., Sunday, Jan. 27 at the Augusta Jewish Community Center. Visit Preview Days for the Salvation Army Auto Auction are WednesdayFriday, Jan. 30-Feb. 1, from 8 a.m.-6 p.m. at the Greene Street office and will include more than 50 cars, boats, trucks and RVs. The auction is Saturday, Feb. 2, at 10 a.m. and proceeds benefit the Salvation Army’s free drug and alcohol rehabilitation program. Visit Karma Yoga is offered at Just Breathe Studio in downtown Aiken at 10 a.m. each Friday. Participation is free with donation of a personal item to be given to the Cumbee Center to Assist Abused Persons. Call 803-648-8048 or visit Pet adoptions are held by CSRA Happy Tails Rescue at the Mullins Crossing Petco in Evans from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. each Sunday and from 1-4 p.m. each Saturday and Sunday at the Tractor Supply Company. Visit


34th Annual Augusta Futurity continues at the James Brown Arena, 8 a.m., Thursday-Saturday, Jan. 24-26. Call 706-823-3417 or visit GRUA Lady Jags will play Paine College 6 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24 at Paine. They will go up against UNC Pembroke at 5:30 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 26. Visit GRUA Jaguars will play Paine College 8 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24 at Paine. They will go up against UNC Pembroke at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 26. Visit Civil War 150th Canal Tour, “Food, Fabric and Firepower,” is offered by the Augusta Canal Interpretive Center at 1:30 daily through 2013. Call 706-823-0440 or visit Basketball Adult Registration held at Aiken Family Y through Feb. 6. Members $40; nonmembers $60. Visit Wheelchair Tennis Clinic, presented by the Walton Foundation for Independence, meets each Monday at 6 p.m. (weather permitting) at The Club at Rae’s Creek. Free and open to the public. Call 706-8265809 or email Yoga Class at Euchee Creek Library meets every Tuesday at 4 p.m. Call 706-556-0594 or visit Weekly Group Runs include the Monday Metro Run meeting at Metro

Coffeehouse at 6 p.m.; Monday Intervals meeting at the Family Y track on Wheeler Road at 7 p.m.; the Tuesday Nacho Mama’s Group Run at 6 p.m.; Wednesday’s Blanchard Woods Group Run at 6 p.m.; Wednesday Stay in Shape Group Run at 6 p.m.; Wednesday’s Post Office Hill Training Run at 7 p.m.; Thursday’s Homer Hustle at 6 p.m.; and Saturday’s Stay in Shape Run at 8 a.m. Visit Augusta Canal Interpretive Center and Petersburg boat tours winter schedule runs through March 31 and is as follows: The Center is open from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Hour-long Petersburg boat canal tours depart at 11:30 a.m., 1:30 and 3 p.m. Admission to Center is $6, or free with $12.50 boat tour ticket. Seniors 65+, active military/ dependent and students (age 4-grade12 or with valid college I.D.) are $2. One child under 3 per ticketed adult may get in free. Closed Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. Call 706-823-0440, ext. 4. Groups call ext. 7. Visit The Augusta Fencers Club is open five nights a week from 5:30-9 p.m. and most Saturday mornings from 10 a.m.-noon. Visitors always welcome. Call 706-722-8878. The Augusta Rugby Club holds weekly practice sessions at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Larry Bray Memorial Pitch in Augusta. Experienced players and newbies ages 18 and up are welcome. Bring a pair of cleats or cross trainers, a mouthguard, gym shorts and a T-shirt. Visit or Facebook under the Augusta Rugby Club heading. Hott Shott Disc Golf is held each Wednesday at 7 p.m. at Killer B Disc Golf in downtown Augusta, and features games and prizes for all ages and skill levels. $2. Call 706-814-7514 or visit killerbdiscgolf.blogspot. com/p/hott-shott. Thursday Night Chain Reaction Ride begins at 6 p.m. each Thursday at Patriots Park in Grovetown. For intermediate to fast-paced cyclists, who average 25-32 miles. Participants should bring their own water and helmet. Call 706-855-2024 or visit Riverview Disc Golf League meets each Thursday at 6 p.m. at Riverview Park in North Augusta. Entry fee $5; ace pool $1. Call 803215-8181 or visit Road Bike Ride meets each Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at Andy Jordan’s Bicycle Warehouse downtown for an approximately 25-mile ride at a moderate to fast pace. Front and rear lights, as well as a helmet, are required. Call 706-724-6777 or visit Guided Trail Rides at Hilltop Riding Stables at Fort Gordon are available Saturdays at 9 a.m., 10:30 a.m., noon, 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m.; Sundays at 9 a.m., 10:30 a.m. and noon; and Wednesday-Friday at 11 a.m. with reservations 24 hours in advance. All trail rides are on a first-come, first-served basis, and participants should arrive 30 minutes prior to the trail ride starting for sign in procedures. $23$30. Call 706-791-4864 or visit Lakeside Rideouts at Hilltop Riding Stables at Fort Gordon are each Sunday beginning at 1:30 p.m. on a first-come, first-served basis. The ride, which begins at 2 p.m., is a two-hour guided ride to Wilkerson Lake. $45-$50. Call 706-791-4864 or visit Adapted Aquatics for Special Populations offered at the Wilson Family AUGUSTA’S INDEPENDENT VOICE SINCE 1989


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Y by appointment. Members $11 per session; nonmembers $22 per session. Discount for additional siblings. Call 706-922-9664 or visit

On Being a Girl will be offered for girls age 9-12, accompanied by their mother, or female relative or friend, at Trinity Hospital of Augusta, 6-9 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 29. Visit

BlazeSports Swim Team, for all ages of physically challenged swimmers who want to train for competition, meets at the Wilson Family Y. Members $35 a month; non-members $50 a month. Preregistration required. Visit

All About Boats Story Time is Wednesday, Jan. 30, at 10 a.m. at the Headquarters Branch Library. Call 706-821-2600 or visit

Men’s Basketball Registration is being held at the Wilson Family Y through March 6 for ages 18 and up. Members $40; nonmembers $60. $20 team entry fee due by March 6. Season begins March 18. Visit


Pajama Party will be held at the Aiken Public Library for grades K-5, 7-8 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24. Kids can party in their pj’s with stories, games and snacks. Registration required. Call 803-642-2023 or visit Lego Club meets at the North Augusta Library, for kids grades K-5, 4-5 p.m., Friday, Jan. 25. Legos provided. Call 803-642-7575 or visit After-Hours Scavenger Hunt, a teen activity with a Financial Wellness Month theme, is Friday, Jan. 25, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Columbia County Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-863-1946 or visit Growing Boys, a class on what to expect during the pre-adolescent years for boys ages 9-12 with their fathers, male relatives or friends, is Saturday, Jan. 26, from 9:30 a.m.-noon at Trinity Hospital of Augusta. $10; pre-registration required. Visit Parents’ Night Out will be held at the Marshall Family Y, 6-9:30 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 26. Open to kids 2-12. Members $12 per child; nonmembers $20 per child. Free for children of deployed soldiers. Pre-registration suggested. Visit Miss Fox Creek High School Pageant will be held at the Imperial Theatre, 6 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 26. $10-$13 plus fees. Call 706-722-8341 or visit Parents’ Night Out will be held at the Wilson Family Y and Family Y of Augusta South, 6-9:30 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 26. Open to kids 2-12. Members $12 per child; nonmembers $20 per child. Preregistration required. Visit Parents’ Night Out for Children of Deployed Soldiers will be held at the Marshall Family Y and the Family Y of North Augusta, 6-9:30 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 26. Open to kids 2-12. Free. Pre-registration suggested. Visit Digistar Laser Fantasy will be shown at DuPont Planetarium at 8-9 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 26. Call 803-641-3654 or email “The Frog Prince: A Play With Puppetry” will be performed at the Imperial Theatre by Storyland Theatre at 9:30 and 10:45 a.m., and 12:15 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, Jan. 29-31. Call 706-736-3455 or visit or Etiquette Story Time is Tuesday, Jan. 29, at 10 a.m. at the Headquarters Branch Library. Call 706-8212600 or visit Watercolor on Words Craft Workshop, for those in grades 6-12 who will create a work of art on the pages of old books, is Tuesday, Jan. 29, from 4-5 p.m. at the Columbia County Library. Preregistration required. Call 706-863-1946 or visit 24JANUARY2013

Nutrition for Kids, sponsored by the UGA Extension Service, is Wednesday, Jan. 30, at 10 a.m. at the Wallace Branch Library. Call 706-722-6275 or visit Drawing and Painting Classes are offered in January at the Family Y of Aiken for ages 6-12. Creations will be displayed in a spring art show. $35 and $55 per session. Financial aid available. Visit thefamilyy. org. Reading with Ringling Bros., a special program at the Headquarters, Appleby and Diamond Lakes branch library, starts in January. Kids ages 2-12 who read five books receive one child’s tickets. Rewards cards are available at each branch’s circulation desk. Visit Basketball and Soccer Registration is being offered throughout January at the North Jefferson Family Y. $30 and $50. Visit Tae Kwon Do will be offered for all skill levels age 5 and up at the Family Y of Aiken County, North Augusta, Augusta South and the Wilson Family Y. Registration required. Visit Winter Basketball is held January-March at the Family Y of North Jefferson for ages 7-18 years. Members $30; nonmembers $50. Call 706-5472653 or visit African-American History Month Trivia Contest begins in January fro those ages 8-11. Pick up a form from the registration desk, fill it out and drop it in the contest box. A prize will be awarded for the entry with the most correct answers and will be announced in February. Call 706-863-1946 or visit Ceramics Class, for ages 14 and up, meets Mondays at 9 a.m. or 6 p.m., Tuesdays at 6 p.m., and Wednesdays at 9 a.m. in the Weeks Ceramics Center. Call 803-642-7631 or visit Creative Arts offered at the Family Y of North Augusta for ages 5-12 years. Members $35 per month; nonmembers $55 per month. Visit Toddler Time, free play for children ages 5 and under, is each Monday and Wednesday from 9:3011:30 a.m. at the H.O. Weeks Center in Aiken. Call 803-642-7631 or visit Little Friends Gym, a parent and child class for those ages 6 months-4 years, is held each Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Warren Road Community Center. Call 706-860-2833 or visit Story Time is held at the Columbia County Library at 10:15 and 11 a.m., Tuesdays, for kids under 2 years old; at 10:15 a.m., Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays for 2-year-olds; at 11 a.m., Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays for preschoolers; and at 4 p.m., Wednesdays, for all ages. Call 706-8631946 or visit Loud Crowd, a supervised after-school program for those ages 4-12, is Monday-Friday from 3-6 p.m. at the Warren Road Community Center. Call 706-8602833 or visit Homeschool PE Time, for elementary school aged kids, meets Monday-Friday, from 9-11 a.m. at the AUGUSTA’S INDEPENDENT VOICE SINCE 1989



Kroc Center. Members free. Call 706-364-5762 for non-member prices. Visit Mother’s Morning Out is every Tuesday and Thursday, 9 a.m.-1 p.m., at the Wilson Family Y for children ages 3-4. The schedule follows the Richmond County school calendar. $90 per month for members; $110 per month for non-members. Register at any Family Y or visit Tai Chi Panda, a Chinese martial arts program for kids ages 5-13, meets Tuesdays and Thursdays. Ages 5-7 meet at 4 p.m.; ages 8-10 meet at 5 p.m.; ages 11-13 meet at 6 p.m. Call 706-394-0590 or visit Preschool Story Time is every Tuesday at Headquarters Branch Library at 10 a.m. Toddler Story Time is every Wednesday at 10 a.m. Group registration required. Call 706-821-2600 or visit

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Story Time is held every Tuesday at 10 a.m. at Friedman Branch Library. Groups of six or more must pre-register. Call 706-736-6758 or visit ecgrl. org.

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Story Time is every Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. at Harlem Branch Library. Call 706-556-9795 or visit Lap-Sit Story Time, for children under two, is every Tuesday at the Columbia County Library at 11 a.m. Story time for two-year-olds is every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at 10:15 a.m. and for preschoolers at 11 a.m. Group registration required. Call 706-863-1946 or visit Kroc Trotters Running Group, for those ages 16 and older, meets at 6:30 p.m. each Tuesday and Thursday at the Kroc Center to run the trails of the Augusta Canal. $15. Call 706-364-5762 or visit Story Time is held every Wednesday from 10-11:15 a.m. at Wallace Branch Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-722-6275 or visit Story Time is held each Wednesday at 10 a.m. at the Maxwell Branch Library. Pre-registration required for groups. Call 706-793-2020 or visit Wacky Wednesday Story Time is each Wednesday at 10 a.m. in the children’s department of Barnes and Noble in the Augusta Mall. Call 706-737-0012 or visit

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Story Time is held each Wednesday at the Appleby Branch Library from 10:05-10:20 a.m. for toddlers age 18-35 months, and from 10:30-11:15 a.m. for preschool kids age 3 and up. An adult must remain with the child. Call 706-736-6244 or visit Story Time is every Wednesday at 10:15 a.m. for Pre-K, and either 11 or 11:30 a.m. for preschoolers at Aiken County Public Library. Call 803-642-2023 or visit



Story Time is every Wednesday from 10:30-11 a.m. for toddlers and 11:15-11:45 a.m. for preschoolers at North Augusta Branch Library. Call 803-2795767 or Story Time at the Euchee Creek Branch Library, for all ages, is held each Wednesday at 10:30 a.m. and each Tuesday at 4:30 p.m. Call 706-556-0594 or visit Study Hall for teens meets Wednesdays from 3-5 p.m. at the Headquarters Branch Library. Call 706821-2600 or visit Homeschool Playgroup meets each Thursday at 10:30 a.m. at Creighton Park in North Augusta. Call

803-613-0484. Mudpuppies, an arts and crafts program for ages 2-5, is held each Thursday at 10:45 a.m. at the Warren Road Community Center. Call 706-860-2833 or visit The Augusta Arsenal Soccer Club Junior Academy, for boys and girls ages 5-8, meets each Thursday at 5:30 p.m. at the Augusta Soccer Park. Call 706854-0149 or visit Kroc Tots Activity Hour, for those 5 and under, meets every Friday from 9-10 a.m. at the Kroc Center. Free, members; $1, non-members. Call 706364-5762 or visit Fun-Time Fridays, for ages 2-5, is held each Friday at 10:45-11:30 a.m. at the Warren Road Community Center. Call 706-860-2833 or visit Gesher, a teen program for post b’nai mitzvah youngsters (7th-12th grade), meets every other Sunday at Adas Yeshurun Synagogue. Call 706-7339491. Pre-registration for the next session of story times at the Columbia County Library is being offered now. Call 706-447-7657 or visit Creek Freaks, a Georgia Adopt-a-Stream team of middle- and high-school students, meets regularly at Phinizy Swamp Nature Park to monitor the health of Butler Creek. Call 706-796-7707 or visit Fairy Tale Ballet is held at the Family Y of Aiken County. Offered once a week for one month for a total of four classes. Members $25/month; nonmembers $35/month. Visit Soccer Registration being held through January at Aiken Family Y for ages 3-12 years. Members $40; nonmembers $60 for 3-4 years. Members $55; nonmembers $75 for 5-12 years. Season is March 23-May 11. Visit Child Safety Seat Inspections offered by appointment at the Safe Kids office (call 706-7217606) or Martinez/Columbia Fire Rescue Engine Co. 3 (call 706-860-7763).


Silversneakers I is offered Mondays and Wednesdays at 9 a.m. and Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays at 11:15 a.m., while Silversneakers Yogastretch is offered Mondays and Wednesdays at 11:15 a.m. at the Weeks Center in Aiken. Call 803642-7631 or visit Ceramics Class is offered at 9 a.m. on Mondays or Wednesdays and 6 p.m. on Mondays or Tuesdays at the Weeks Center. Call 803-642-7631 or visit Fit 4 Ever is offered at the Weeks Center in Aiken on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 10-11 a.m. Call 803-642-7631 or visit Line Dancing is each Tuesday at the Weeks Center in Aiken at 10 a.m. Call 803-642-7631 or visit Yoga I and II are offered at the Weeks Center in Aiken on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 8:45-9:45 a.m. and on Mondays and Wednesdays from 5:30-6:30 p.m. Call 803-642-7631 or visit Silver Sneakers, a senior exercise class, meets each Wednesday and Friday from 1:30-2:30 p.m. at the Kroc Center. Free. Call 706-364-5762 or visit 24JANUARY2013


Games for Seniors at the Weeks Center in Aiken include Rummikub each Thursday from 9 a.m.-noon, Mahjong each Thursday from 1-4 p.m., Bridge each Friday from 11:30 a.m.-3 p.m., Bingo each Tuesday at 9 a.m., Pinochle each Tuesday from 10:30 a.m.2:30 p.m., and Canasta on Tuesdays and Fridays from 11:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Call 803-642-7631 or visit Dancin’ with the Young at Heart, an event geared toward those ages 50 and older although anyone is welcome, is each Friday at 7:30 p.m. at the Aiken DAV. In addition to dancing to Yesterday’s Sounds, there will also be prize drawings, snack and drinks. $6. Call 803-292-3680.


Oolong and Black Tea Seminar will be held at The Curiosity Shop in Aiken, 4-7 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 24. $20. Call 803-644-0004 or visit curiosityshoptea. com. Cocktail Class will be held at The Willcox in Aiken, 6 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 30. Call 803-648-1898 or visit Bingo is held every Sunday at 1:30 p.m. and every Monday and Thursday at 7 p.m. at the Fraternal Order of the Eagles Post 1197 on Scott Road. Free. Call 706-495-3219. Bingo is held every Saturday at 1 p.m. at American Legion Post 205 on Highland Avenue. Call 706495-3219. Crafters Night is each Monday from 6-8 p.m. at the Kroc Center. Call 706-364-5762 or visit Simple Cooking Class meets each Monday from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Kroc Center. Call 706-3645762 or visit The Garden City Chorus, the area’s leading men’s singing group and a member of the Barbershop Harmony Society, is seeking new members. Those interested are welcome to attend Tuesday night rehearsals, held at 7 p.m. at North Augusta Church of Christ on W. Martintown Road. Visit Spiritual “Science, Religion and the Search for Meaning” with former Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks and host of NPR’s “Science Friday” Ira Flatow viewing will be held at Augusta Jewish Community Center, 2:30 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 27. Visit Sunday activities at the Kroc Center include an adult Bible class at 9:30 a.m., youth Sunday school at 9:45 a.m., and a worship service at 11 a.m. Free. Call 706-364-5762 or visit Volunteer Aiken Regional Medical Centers is looking for volunteers. Call 803-641-5021 or visit The Greater Augusta Arts Council offers volunteer opportunities for those interested in volunteering for events like Arts in the Heart, First Friday and special concerts, as well as helping in the GAAC office. Call 706-826-4702 or visit Hospice Care of America’s Augusta office needs administrative and patient care volunteers. No experience necessary; training will be provided. Call Rich Boland at 706-447-2626 or email rboland@ MACH Academy is looking for volunteers to provide tutoring, academic support and mentoring services during fall after-school sessions held Monday-Thursday from 3:30-6 p.m. Call 70624JANUARY2013

796-5046, email or visit Miracle League Baseball, held by the Family Y, is looking for volunteers. Call 706-922-9597 or visit Rape Crisis and Sexual Assault Services is seeking volunteer advocates for Richmond, Burke, Jefferson and McDuffie counties. Advocates answer crisis calls and respond to hospitals in their area within 30 minutes. Call 706-774-2746 or email Reed Creek Park offers opportunities to volunteers interested in collecting important data each month on the health of a local stream for the state of Georgia. Call 706-210-4027 or visit reedcreekpark. com.

Midville at 4:30 p.m., Fridays. Call 478-589-7825. Story time is held at the Sardis Branch Library in Sardis at 3:30 p.m., Fridays. Call 478-569-4866. Zumba Sentao and Zumba classes meet every Monday and Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. at the Aiken County Recreation Center on Jefferson Davis Highway in Graniteville, S.C. $6 per class, with coupons available. Call 706-627-1767.

Thomson 130 Center for all ages. Members $25 per month; nonmembers $35 per month. Visit If you would like to see your organization’s events listed in our calendar, please email Amy Christian at The deadline for each Thursday’s issue is the previous Friday at noon.

Gymnastics Lessons offered at the Family Y of Thomson 130 Center for a combination of age and ability levels. Members $43 per month; nonmembers $63 per month. Visit Art and Music Classes offered at the Family Y of

United Hospice of Aiken, which covers Aiken, Edgefield, McCormick, Barnwell and Allendale counties, needs volunteers to visit with patients or work in the office. Training is provided. Call 803641-0060 or email


“Impressionism from Monet to Matisse” exhibit will be on display at the Columbia Museum of Art Jan. 25-April 21. Adults $15; seniors and military $12; students $5; kids 5 and under free; members free. Call 803-799-2810 or visit Mobile Mammography Screenings will be held 8 a.m.-3 p.m. the following dates and locations: Monday, Jan. 28 at Fievet Pharmacy in Washington, and Thursday, Jan. 31 at Jenkins County Hospital in Millen. Appointment required. Call 706-774-4149 or 866-774-4141. Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” will show at The Shakespeare Tavern in Atlanta, 7:30 p.m., through Jan. 27. Sunday shows begin at 6:30 p.m. $15. Call 404-874-5299 or visit “Anxious Visions” by surrealist Michael Northuis will be on display at the Columbia Museum of Art until April 7. Call 803-799-2810. Story time is held at the Warren County Library in Warrenton at 10:30 a.m., Wednesdays. Call 706465-2656. Thursday Nights at the High, a special event at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, offers half-price tickets from 4-8 p.m. each Thursday. A guided tour is offered at 6:30 p.m. Call 404-733-4200 or visit Story time and craft is held at the Burke County Library in Waynesboro at 10:30 a.m., Fridays, for preschoolers. Call 706-554-3277. Story time is held at the Midville Branch Library in


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15 in 5

Because I love a list. Especially a random list. 1. If this is winter, I don’t like winter. I got spoiled by the warm weather we’ve had. Yep, that’s a complaint. I’ll take the heat any day. 2. I find that I deal with the cold by getting in bed really early. Well, it may not be early for everyone else. I’m used to being up until 11 or 12 each night. Being asleep by 10 keeps me warm. I guess that’s how hibernation works. I haven’t started taking food to bed with me, though. 3. If I told you how many beers I drank last weekend, you’d probably think I have a problem. If I tell you that they were mostly two-ounce pours in a plastic sampler glass, I hope your judgment would lessen a bit. 4. We went to the World Beer Festival in Columbia last weekend. As much as I’d love for all of y’all to stay in town and enjoy what Augusta has to offer, this was a great excuse to plan a vacation that only requires a one-hour drive. We got our hotel for $62 on Priceline (thanks to the suggestion and boost of confidence by my gambling friend, Boomkat). Apparently, the people at the Marriott front desk liked us so much, they even gave us breakfast vouchers. Maybe they do that for everyone, but I felt important. And we ate free breakfast. 5. The Beer Fest was people-watching at its best. My favorite story of the day (well, that I can share here) was when a man was trying to convince his wife to try a new beer. “Honey, you should try Yuengling Light! You love Miller Lite, so I think you’ll like this one just fine.” I’m not judging anyone’s taste in beer, you see. It’s just that there were so many other choices. Over 50 breweries were represented there. If I wanted something I could pick up at the jiffy store, I’d have picked it up at the jiffy store and saved the $40 entrance fee. That’s all I’m saying. 6. After the festival, we played cornhole in the sun at the World of Beer, had sushi at Tsunami, and bar hopped a bit. At one point, we settled at Hunter Gatherer, a place known for its home brews. It was a bit of a walk, but we got to walk through the beautiful, manicured grounds of the capitol building. 7. While at the bar, a woman approached The Man. I’m not worried about his fidelity, so women talking to him in a bar don’t bother me one bit. They chatted, and he mentioned that his wife was nearby. I returned to my seat, he introduced me (as his wife) and I smiled and said “Hey! Yep! This is my husband!” I rubbed his arm and turned around to talk to one of our friends. She asked him what was wrong with me and walked away. 8. I hadn’t visited Columbia for anything other than the zoo and some long ago – and very exciting – Wiggles concerts. Downtown is very walkable and clean, and there are tons of restaurant and bar choices. Once the sun went down, our favorite


spot was The Whig. It’s a tiny, underground place. From what I’ve read since, it’s the kind of place where you’ll see all kinds of people. We sat in our own little room that must’ve been a vault at some point. 9. If you share your sake with the wait staff, you’ll get better service. 10. If you sit at the bar, tip the sushi chef. You’ll get better service. 11. Before we took a single sip of beer that day, we needed food. Those in our group who’d gone the year before suggested a place called Liberty Tap Room because of a specific burger they wanted. The Freedom Burger isn’t your average burger. It has bacon, homemade pickles, cheese, and a fried egg on it. I love bacon. I like fried eggs, too. A burger with both is pretty damn good. 12. If you think you can beat my friend Alex at cornhole, you’d better be sure. He’s a ringer. 13. If you like beer, visit Columbia next year for the World Beer Festival. 14. If you don’t want to travel that far, you can go to the Metro Spirit’s ETCP Second Annual Spring Fest. It’s on Saturday, March 9, from noon-7 p.m. The lines were long last year, but they’ll be better this year. There’s already a list of nearly 20 beers to try.

JENNYWRIGHT lives in Summerville with her husband, who she calls The Man, and two kids, who she affectionately calls The Boy and The Girl. She enjoys taking photos, cooking and playing tennis.




Our House

The Boar’s Head brings authentic food, good beer and British atmosphere to Augusta

Chris Anderson has loved British food since he was a child. “I’ve been attracted to British pubs since the time I was three and I went to Epcot with the folks,” he laughed. “We walked by the British pub and I smelled the stale beer and the fish and chips and I wanted it.” Chris didn’t get any beer that day, but his love of all things England has been going strong ever since. Chief among those loves is the food, which he says is much better than most people think. “British food has an undeserved reputation and that’s because, after World War II, with rationing and the fact that the entire economy was devastated, people were taking shortcuts,” he explained. “And the food was bad. The ingredients were bad. But British food done right, it’s just meat and two veg. It’s home cooking. It’s comfort food, all of it.” Fish and chips, shepherd’s pie, bangers and mash, Scotch eggs… these dishes and more are ones Chris taught himself to cook over the years. His love of the food, beer, culture and history of England, along with the frequent trips he and his mother Musa took there, made opening a pub in Augusta a no-brainer. So the two opened the Boar’s Head Public House on December 27 in a space formerly occupied by the White Elephant. “We have our tartan up there for the Anderson name, and that’s where we got the Boar’s Head name from because it’s on our crest,” Musa said of the name. “Someone said, ‘So you serve sandwiches with Boar’s Head meat?’ No. I know it’s a famous name but it’s actually from our [family] crest, and we wanted to make it family oriented.” The restaurant, said Musa, was years in the making. “We started entertaining the idea seriously I guess five or six years ago,” she said. “I said, wait until I retire and maybe we can do something. So when I retired, last March Chris said, ‘So when are we going to do this thing?’” Before retiring, Musa worked at the VA for 31 years in quality management. Chris said he did “a little bit of everything.” “I was a guitar player and that’s all I wanted to do other than this,” he admitted. “It was either

going to be a cook or a guitar player and the guitar-playing thing didn’t work out like I wanted it to, so…” The fact that Chris’ music career didn’t pan out may have been a good thing, because, although he has no formal training, he seems to be a natural in the kitchen. “We have someone back there who’s been cooking for 20 years and he said he’s never seen anything like Chris in the kitchen,” Musa said. “It’s like a naturalborn thing. He knows the food.” “And I love cooking,” Chris added. “I’ve loved cooking for years and know the recipes by heart, so it really wasn’t hard to get in there and get it done.” Authenticity is of paramount importance to Chris, and everything is made in-house. Customers are responding to the food, gobbling up items like the steak and Guinness pie and the Stilton burger, served with sautéed mushrooms and a Guinness reduction. In fact, everything on the menu seems to be popular. “That’s hard to say because we sell equal amounts of just about everything,” Chris said when asked about customer favorites. “If I had to pick, I’d say the shepherd’s pie, the burgers, the steak and Guinness pie and the Scotch egg. We struggle to keep the sausage made that goes around it because we make all our own sausage.” Authenticity doesn’t stop at the food, however. Chris, he and Musa explained, was the driving force behind everything from the condiments (Colman’s mustard, HP sauce, Sarson’s malt vinegar) to the décor to perhaps one of the most important components of a pub: the beer. “If it’s a British pub you have to have the British mainstays,” he explained. “And I actually took two trips to London this year to kind of figure out what I wanted to do and the ones I liked best when I was in the pub I brought them back over here.” On tap options includes Fuller’s ESB (extra special bitters), Wells Bombardier, Newcastle, Guinness and Hobgoblin. Beers are served in imperial pints. “So you can order a half-pint, which is 10 ounces, or a full pint, which is 20, but we don’t do American 16-ounce pints,” Chris explained. “I was a stickler for that one. They had to be 20 ounces.” Which brings us to the very important distinction between the British definition of a pub and the American definition. Though beer and alcohol are important to the English interpretation of a pub, the word actually is short for public house. Pubs in England are more than just bars, and Chris and Musa want people in Augusta to understand the difference when it comes to the Boar’s Head as well. Anyone, from families with children to those who want to take advantage of the free wi-fi to older adults are welcome here. “It’s a meeting house,” Chris explained. “It’s a public house and that’s why I chose the name, because it’s a social place. Everybody comes to talk about the day, talk about the weather… everybody comes to have fun. It’s a house that anybody is welcome in.” The Boar’s Head Public House 1135 Broad Street | Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m.; Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-2 a.m. 706-723-5177 Are you so frustrated with your computer you’ve considered tossing it out the window? Is it so slow you can barely use it? Are you having trouble getting to your favorite web page... or facebood? Are you even tempted to teake it to one of those Big Box Stores for service? Think again! Do you really want the place that sells you envelopes or flat screen TVs working on your computer? Bring it to ComputerOne today... and our real computer guys will make it all better at a price you can afford. We’re the opposite of a Big Box Store. We’re the little store in Fairway Square and although we have our own of computer experts, we dont really call them geeks (at least to their faces). They’re just competent, skilled computer technicians with the know-how to clean up your computer at a reasonable price and get you back on the internet fast. And although we’re not keeping score, given the fact we’re celebrating our 25th anniversary this year, it is very likely we’ve sold and repaired more computers than any other company in Augusta... and we have thousands of satisfied customers to prove it.




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‘80s Flashback

Don’t worry; it’s only for one night at Surreal at Surrey

Hey, remember the ‘80s? On one side there were sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll; on the other there were AIDS, crack and The Cure. But let’s stay on the good side, which is the one without AIDS if you were confused. If you want to relive that epic decade, or maybe you’re too young and you missed it, head out to the new Surreal at Surrey this Friday night for Ultimate ‘80s Night. Augusta’s own Acid Wash, which is headed up by Big Troy Bradley, will be joining The Kings of Hollywood. Who are the Kings of Hollywood you ask? They are three of the best tribute bands to the groups that dominated the Hollywood, California, scene in the ‘80s: Poisoned, Appetite for Destruction, and Red, White, and Crue. I hope you can pick up on which band is paying tribute to whom. Surreal is pulling out all the stops for the show. I heard there was even going to be an appearance by the DoLorean, Doc Brown not included. So bust out your life preserver and Reebok pumps or, if you were poor like me, your L.A. Gear pumps, and head out to Surreal at Surrey. Surreal is located in the upper level of Surrey Center, in the old Vue spot. Doors open up at 8:30 p.m. I wonder if Appetite for Destruction will show up on time. I hope they serve Tab. I was perusing the ole Facebook and saw that Bar on Broad will be welcoming DJ Sqwish on First Friday, February 1. Downtown is always a blast on First Fridays, so I’m sure it will be a big party at BOB. With a name like DJ Sqwish, he better be good. Why couldn’t you just go with something like DJ Matt or DJ Kris Fisher? DJ Sqwish? I bet you $10 he’s fat. I kid, I kid. Fat or not, if he’s at Bar on Broad he’s good. There’s a CD Release Party to write down in your calendar. Carey Murdock will be returning to Sky City on Thursday, February 7, to show off his brand new album, “Shot in the Dark.” The album was produced by Rick Beato, who has produced NEEDTOBREATHE, Shinedown and Trey Anastasio of Phish. Carey will be performing two sets that night, a 9:30 show and a 10:30 show. It’s only $5 to get in and, of course, it’s a 21 and up show. Maybe wishing Alice in Chains would sell out in its opening week was stretching it, but a boy can wish can’t he? Tickets are still available for Alice in Chains at the Bell Auditorium on May 1. Maybe the announcement of who they are touring with would help, but they still haven’t announced that. One of the many rumored bands has been the Deftones, which would be awesome. The last time the Deftones were in town they played at the amphitheatre and killed it. It would also be nice to have a local band on the bill, but that may be another wish of mine not met. In national news, it looks like Axl Rose didn’t want to get beat out by Justin Bieber or Katie Perry, so he’s releasing a 3D concert movie. Before you get excited, it’s “Fat Axl,” not the “fur coat, jean shorts and high tops Axl” we all miss. The film, documenting their residency in Las Vegas last year, will be released later this year. Axl still runs around the stage like a mad man, he just now does is a slower pace and heavy breathing. I think I’ll have to pass on this one. New music! Finally Vampire Weekend has announced that they will release their long-awaited third album on May 7. There’s no title yet for the disc. My album pick of the week is The Joy Formidable’s new album “Wolf’s Law,” which landed on store shelves Tuesday. The lead singer looks like a demented baby doll. Google it. What shows are coming to Augusta? Who is the best in town? Where is your band playing? I wonder if Tommy Lee has started driving that boat with his hands yet. Email me at matt@





Ahead of the Curve

Lakeside grad opens casual-upscale restaurant on Fury’s Ferry If you think Bird Dog Grille is an odd name for a restaurant, you obviously either haven’t been to the Village at Fury’s Ferry eatery or haven’t lived in the area for a very long time. “I serve healthy food, but comfort food at the same time,” explained Brett Hilton, a 2002 Lakeside High grad. “I knew when I opened the restaurant that I wanted to serve chicken and hot dogs and that’s where I came up with the name.” The name, however, also works on another level. “I also thought, within the community, you have Gamecock fans and you have Georgia fans,” he added. “So that went with the name, too.” Bird Dog Grille has been open almost seven months, serving lunch, dinner and, on Sundays, brunch, with appetizers including nachos, fried pickles and hummus and entrées that include salads, soups, paninis, wings, hot dogs, platters, burgers and more. This, however, is far from Hilton’s first foray into the world of food. While in Milledgeville at Georgia College and State University, he was the go-to guy when his friends wanted something more than standard college-student fare. “Yeah, we would cook stuff during the week and grill,” he said. “At that point I

hadn’t been to culinary school, so it was just stuff I was making up. I love cooking. I just like the product in the end and the creativity; mixing things up and making it your own. Even when you start with a recipe, you’re adding your own spin to it and it’s soothing. It’s almost like making art.” After college, Hilton returned to Augusta, where he attended Augusta Tech’s culinary program while working at Longhorns. Once finished, he worked for DiChickO’s Peri-Peri Cafe, where he eventually became manager. And though he’s branched out on his own, he still uses the DiChickO’s Peri-Peri sauce in his many of his dishes, as well as the bird dog sauce. “That’s basically a perinaise,” he explained. “I just add a little bit of cayenne and some lemon juice.” Customers, Hilton said, love the food and the atmosphere at the restaurant, which is a little more upscale than you might think from it’s humble, strip-center exterior. They also love the almost nightly specials, which includes kids eat free on Monday, 50-cent wings on Tuesday, all night happy hour on Thursday, and martini night on Saturday. By far the most popular, however, is Wednesday night’s wine and dine. Customers who order the flat-iron steak, which comes with two sides, get half off bottles of wine. Specials even extend to outside the restaurant for those who have a Bird Dog Grille sticker on their vehicles. “If you put it on the back of your car and I see your car at the grocery store or at the gym, I’ll put a flyer on your car and you’ll get a free meal the next time you come in,” he said. “It’s just a fun thing to do.” Another fun thing that Hilton does is showcase pictures of customers’ dogs. A dog owner himself, he encourages people to email him pictures, which he uploads to a USB card and plugs into one of the restaurant’s televisions. It’s just one more way for Hilton to balance out the more upscale nature of the restaurant. And though Bird Dog Grille isn’t really a sports bar, he does have a projector television that he uses for college football games and, on February 3, a Super Bowl party that will include drink specials and giveaways. Bird Dog Grille, Hilton believes, is a great fit for an area that is continuing to grow and expand. “It’s a good location: My parents live out here, I live out here and I feel like things are coming out this way,” he explained. “Hopefully, I’m ahead of everybody else.” Bird Dog Grille 3851 Evans to Locks Road Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-9 p.m.; Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-midnight; Sunday, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. 706-814-5007 |





Extraordinary People

Intimate setting, innovative classes set Ultimate Ride apart from the rest When the Ultimate Ride opened in October 2009, co-owners Gayle Shafer (pictured) and Jayme Durand just wanted to indulge in their passion for fitness and help others by teaching spinning classes part-time. Fast-forward a little more than three years and the Ultimate Ride & Fitness has become one of the most personal and innovative workout spaces in the area, and it’s no longer a side business for the two co-owners. In April of 2010, Shafer, who worked at the Tile Center, and Durand, who was head softball coach at Aiken Tech, realized that their clients might get bored with just spinning classes, so they began to look for other classes to add to their roster. Indo-row, a group fitness class using waterbased rowing machines, was the first. “We found the water rowers, the indo-row machines, that nobody else had,” Durand explained. We wanted to stay innovative and new, and it had just hit the west coast.” Body Blade vibration training and Resist-a-Ball stability ball training soon followed and the duo found that they were running out of room in their small studio. “That’s when Austin [Tashakori] came to us,” Durand said. “He was opening Live Fit and asked if we wanted to rent space. That’s when we had to decide if this was going to be full-time or if we were just going to keep it a hobby.” Their passion for helping others made the decision easy. “The reason that we started the Ultimate Ride, our motto, is to make ordinary people feel extraordinary,” Shafer explained. These days, the Ultimate Ride & Fitness has a roster of classes that, in addition to spinning, includes Zumba, RIPPED (a P90X-Insanity type class), cardio kickboxing and boot camp. They’ve also recently developed a Functional Fitness area, where participants use fitness equipment like ship ropes and kettlebells to strengthen their bodies to help in everyday chores. “The Functional Fitness concept is designed to help in everyday life, like carrying in groceries from the car,” Shafer said. “The average woman can’t even lift a suitcase to put it in the overhead bin in an airplane, so these workouts will help with things like that.” Functional Fitness classes are about 45 minutes long and once participants have taken a few classes and gone through an assessment, Shafer and Durand will develop a program for them to use on their own. The Ultimate Ride & Fitness has many great specials going on right now, including a $29 onemonth trial that includes access to all classes and workouts. “So they can take everything we offer and then, at the end of the month, they can decide what works for them,” Shafer said. Sign up is also going on for the UR Committed to Be Fit, a team weight loss challenge that begins January 28 and ends March 8. Even without specials, the Ultimate Ride & Fitness offers great deals. There’s never a membership or joining fee; clients pay by the class or can buy packages. But great prices aren’t the best reason to go to Ultimate Ride & Fitness. Along with innovative classes, participants benefit from the small, personalized atmosphere, one in which the owners will run a halfmarathon with you when you reach your weight loss goal as they did this last fall. “We’re small enough that we know who everybody is, we know their husbands’ names, we know their kids’ names,” Shafer said. “And if they haven’t been in a while, they get a postcard. It’s a little more personal than a regular fitness club.” That personalized attention means that the duo will do whatever they can to help their clients achieve their goals. They offer nutritional supplements, workout gear and, when someone signs up for a spin class, they’ll put a little “reserved” tag on a bike with their name on it. They’ve even teamed up with Shafer’s family physician and often refer clients to her if they think it’s necessary. And that’s exactly how the two like it. “We don’t want to be huge,” Durand said. “We want to stay with 250-300 clients so that we do know everybody’s name. It’s important, not just for the customer service, but for the relationships.” The Ultimate Ride & Fitness is located at 3830 Washington Road, Ste. 16, next to Live Fit in the Kmart shopping center. They’re open from 5 a.m.-7:30 p.m. For more information, call 706-910-8136 or visit 36 METROSPIRITAUGUSTA’S INDEPENDENT VOICE SINCE 1989






Oscar nominee Jessica Chastain scores an exacta, starring in both the No. 1 and No. 2 movies. RANK




































“Broken City”


Mark Wahlberg plays Mark Wahlberg… again

The time has come to admit that for as much fun as he sometimes is to watch, Mark Wahlberg is an actor in name only. It doesn’t matter which Mark Wahlberg character he’s playing, really. They’re all variations on the same blue-collar joe who can take a punch on the way to getting to the bottom of things and will always stick up for his family while he’s at it. Andy Samberg’s “Say hi to your mother for me” impression of Wahlberg stuck because Wahlberg carries that strangely reassuring air about him, as if he’s just a nice young man from the neighborhood who might just swing a bat against a guy’s spine if he’s backed into a corner. But he is always, always Mark Wahlberg. In “Broken City,” the new perfunctory political crime thriller, Wahlberg stars as an ex-cop private eye who gets caught up in some shady business with New York’s ruthless mayor, played by Russell Crowe. The mayor has some dirt on the dick, and then hires the dick to get some dirt on his wife, the ornate Catherine Zeta-Jones. The mayor thinks she’s cuckolding him and hires Wahlberg the week before the mayoral election to find her paramour, mumbling something about how imperative it is that the opposing camp not leak the affair. Also, the city’s just getting into a big real estate deal that stinks, and the mayor plays racquetball with some rich dudes who expect him to win the election. Wahlberg, per usual, has got to get to the bottom of things, and quickly, using all of his wits and both of his facial expressions. The dots here are not particularly hard to connect, but in the interest of not actually spoiling what comes next, let’s just say there’s an excellent movie 38 METROSPIRITAUGUSTA’S INDEPENDENT VOICE SINCE 1989

to be made about the connection between Wall Street financiers, politically connected developers, a billionaire mayor and New York City real estate deals that throw poor people out on their asses. Unfortunately “Broken City” is not that movie. That’s not to say it’s a total wash. It presents a strong undercurrent of pervasive casual corruption without pretending it’s pulling the scales from our eyes. Crowe’s imperialistic mayor doesn’t even find it terribly interesting to be able to buy, direct and squash people. In the final act, when a car runs Wahlberg’s detective off the road, he asks a cop how long it’ll take to pull the footage from a public security camera that captured the wreck. The cop tells him that depends on whether he’s got a powerful uncle he can call. “Broken City” falters by building in only one real plot twist (a nonstunning one at that) and by putting an oddly bland P.I. at the center of the action. Wahlberg evinces street smarts but little in the way of the dark charm or ingenuity that has made immortals of other movie detectives over the years. Director Allen Hughes (of The Hughes Brothers fame) handed Wahlberg a character with layers but no depth, and adding depth is simply not Wahlberg’s expertise. He winds up guilty of the two great sins a movie character can commit: With a few exceptions, he neither does anything nor says anything particularly entertaining. He plays a great regular joe. But there’s a reason we go see movies, and it ain’t generally to watch the fellow from down the block. 24JANUARY2013




“Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters,” rated R, starring Jeremy Renner, Gemma Arterton, Famke Janssen. We had high hopes for this one when the idea was first proposed what seems like 10 years ago. The idea, grown up Hansel and Gretel hunting witches, still sounds like fun, but shelving a movie for a long time never bodes well. “Parker,” rated R, starring Jason Statham, Jennifer Lopez, Michael Chiklis, Nick Nolte. Revenge is the order of the day for Jason Statham… but isn’t it always?


“Movie 43,” rated R, starring Emma Stone, Richard Gere, Liev Schreiber, Elizabeth Banks, Kristen Bell, Halle Berry, Gerard Butler, Anna Faris, Hugh Jackman, Johnny Knoxville, Jason Duseikis, Uma Thurman, Naomi Watts, Kate Winslet. Billed as “the biggest cast ever assembled for the most outrageous comedy ever made,” we have no idea what to expect from this one. It looks like one of those terrible holidaythemed movies with a gigantic cast performing in sappy vignettes crossed with something the Wayans brothers would make. Saying this one might be good is like saying the milk in your fridge with an expiration date of two days ago might not be bad: it’s a crapshoot, apparently like all the other choices this week.

WERECOMMEND “Velvet Goldmine”

Warning: This obscure 1998 rock opera (for lack of a better description) by director Todd Haynes is not for everyone: It contains full-frontal male nudity, drug use and sex — lots and lots of sex of both the hetero- and homosexual variety. This, however, should come as no surprise when one finds out that it revolves around the glam rock world of the early 1970s. Jonathan Rhys Myers plays Brian Slade-Maxwell Demon, a David Bowie-Ziggy Stardust like character. Ewan McGregor (pictured above) is Curt Wild, a combination of Iggy Pop and Lou Reed. The story bounces back and forth between the ‘70s and the mid-‘80s, when Christian Bale’s reporter tries to find out what happened to Slade, who disappears from public view (or does he?) after a stage stunt turns fans against him. In talking to, among others, Slade’s wife Mandy (Toni Collette) and his manager Jerry (comedian Eddie Izzard, not in drag), he begins to piece together a “Citizen Kane” like story that is fascinating for those who can follow it. Viewers don’t have to really follow the story, however; this is a movie whose strengths are its visuals and music. Slade’s backup band, Venus in Furs, includes Radiohead’s Thom York and Roxy Music’s Andy Mackay, and Curt Wild’s Wylde Ratttz includes The Stooges’ Ron Asheton, Sonic Youth’s Thurston Moore and the Minutemen’s Mike Watt. The soundtrack features originals from Pulp, Shudder to Think and Grant Lee Buffalo, as well as the movie bands’ covers of T. Rex, The Stooges, the New York Dolls and songs from the era by Lou Reed, Brian Eno and more. Alas, no Bowie (rumor has it he didn’t like the script and wouldn’t allow the use of his songs), but turns out you won’t miss it. You shouldn’t miss this ode to excess, however. 24JANUARY2013




Michael Johnson

Glenda Howell, Kathy Buffington and Kristin Downey at Coyotes.


Raul and Graze Reyes with Rebecca Reyes and Jorge Chavez at Bar on Broad.

Pat VanHouser, Diane and Roger Duke and Marsha Loda at the Comedy Zone at Somewhere in Augusta.


Peter Knox, Beth Bazemore and Wendy Wahl at the Fox’s Lair.

Sarah Hodgson with guitarists Frank Vignola and David Bock at Augusta Amusements’ An Evening with a Master Guitarist at the Jabez S. Hardin Performing Arts Center.


Austin and Whitney Greene with Katie Roon and Matt Hebbard at Carolina Ale House.


Niles Emeneker, Amy Jackson and Chiara Cavaggion at Joe’s Underground.

Chaya Gruber, Heather Usry and Cori Bay at Bar on Broad.

Michael Johnson

John Hartfield, Amanda Story, Rachel Goodwin and Justin Williford at Coyotes.


Coming Soon to Evans!

Early 2013

Our Interest is in You! 4349 Washington Road Across from Mellow Mushroom in front of Kroger




Have something you want to get off your chest? Send your whines to whineline@themetrospirit. com. If you do so by noon on Friday, you might just see it in the next Thursday’s issue. Oh, and whines may be edited for content but will pretty much be printed exactly as you type them.


That Manti Te’O story gets better and better by the minute. Was it an elaborate hoax pulled on him or was it an elaborate scam pulled on us? I can’t believe the gullibility vortex that people get sucked into via the internet. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to mail $500 to my Nigerian internet friend that’s going to cut me in on his million dollar inheritance for sending him this required bail money. You people - you’re so gullible!

The idea for the bus from Fort Gordon to downtown will never fly because the taxi cab companies will never allow it to happen. One cab company already has a monopoly at the airport and don’t allow city buses to run out there. The cab companies make






Think owning a gun makes you safer? Think again. Gun-owners are 4 times more likely to die of gunshot wounds than non gunowners. The NRA wants to outlaw pediatricians from informing parents of this fact. This shows conservatives are against Big Brother government...except when they are for it.

Has there ever been a radio talk show host with a more limited vocabulary than Austin Rhodes? This is a snap shot of words that he uses daily. Incredible- incredibly - cotton picking - none of your beeswax- cool- kiss my fanny- hilarious - my friend - my granddaddy -my daddy -MCG - Pittsburgh. Constantly uses movie and t.v. Metaphors. One more disparaging remarks. Forgot one hip hip hooray. Really Metro Spirit, are you positive Josh Ruffin has a masters degree? U.S. gun deaths were 32,163 in 2011. U.S. deaths related to alcohol were approximately 100,000 that year. Yet, Ruffin works as a bartender and may very well directly contribute to one of those deaths. I guarantee any firearm I own will not contribute to the death of an innocent citizen. Bet he can’t say the same when he pours the next drink. Ruffin is right when he says “best way to debunk bulls**t is to lay bare the truth....” He should practice what he preaches. Virginia Tech had a whole police department but they were not sitting in the classroom. If any of the students, or instructor, had a firearm, the outcome would have probably been a lot different, just as it would have been if Hitler had not disarmed the Jews prior to leading them to their deaths.

So an Augusta State Medical Prison employee chooses to provide contraband to prisoners there for the bucks against obvious rules. I see she must belong among the inmates inside the bars. Or if she has no mental problems besides bad morals, she can go to the regular prisons.


That is so shameful of Harold Doby to have had a gun right there in his room. And the drugs from somebody who was not even an ASU student. Tsk, tsk, tsk. The Spirit should take a poll on whether or not Josh Ruffin should have a weekly article or should be replaced by Gregory Baker who has an article in vol. 24, no. 3. Baker appears to use intelligence and reasoning which Ruffin seriously lacks, relying on emotion and dillusions. Heck, I am suprised Ruffin was able to get a job as a bartender as most bartenders are usually pleasant and can offer thought provocation during a conversation. Brad Owens says on TV that he has a plan to expand city bus service out to Fort Gordon and elsewhere and he says it wont cost the taxpayers. So the all powerful and all knowing Brad Owens has figured out a way for public transit to pay for itself? I’m sure every city in the world would like to hear his plan. Of course he doesn’t say exactly how this would be paid for, just that it wont cost tax payers anything. Maybe Brad can give us the details of his business plan. Oh and what happened to Brad’s big plans to start his weekly paper to compete with The Spirit? That seems to have vanished, as I suppose this Bus proposal will when commissioners realize that Brad Owens is just full of hot air.



The new sheriff’s apparent inclination to avoid public scrutiny reminds me of the nefarious Dr.Charles Larke, former superintendant of schools. Cock-o-the Walk Doc spent a career hiding behind closed doors, shortchanging a generation of students, intimidating and demoralizing professional staff (i.e. real teachers), sweetening his own compensation package on a regular basis, and bamboozling a weak-kneed school board more interested in “harmony” than positive outcomes. Larke, who was out when he was in, and in when he was out, used his “public relations spokesperson” as one way to mask his obvious ignorance and incompetence. Let’s hope Sheriff Roundtree doesn’t have similar ulterior motives by insulating himself from press, and therefore public, accoutability. And setting such an example will do nothing to improve the department’s abismal skills in “community friendly” policing, the soundest basis for public safety. And if patterns of stonewalling and obfuscation evolve as a result of Roundtree’s new “information policies”, it will be incumbent on the local press to pursue truth with even more vigor. One cannot help being suspicious of a man who offers himself for public service, and right out of the starting gate seeks to insulate himself from the citizenry who elected him.


now they are best buds since Corey can now deliver a board or authority appointment to Augusta’s chief gadfly.

Some of these higher ups in the new consolidated campuses really need to take other classes besides sensitivity classes. Why on earth did they think they can promote a Negro Leagues event on campus with a photo of Babe Ruth?

I was horrified at the first report of thief of video games from Best Buy in the men’s room. Why does a so-called top electronic store not have video taping? Second, why was there no security gate leading to the restrooms to prevent items from going into restrooms? That’s disgusting when you know a lot of people refuse to wash their hands after handling nasty stuff.


far too much money on Fort Gordon traffic to just give it up. This idea will never happen.

“New Kids on the Block Promises Biggest Year Yet in 2013.” Good thing their tour isn’t getting any closer to us than Atlanta!


All the chatter about the inauguration revolving around the first lady’s dress and bangs.

Ploch Ploch Fizz Fizz, now we all know who the Imperial thief is. Been noticing Brad Owens has been heaping a lot of praise on Corey Johnson lately since he became mayor pro tem. I guess



















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Metro Spirit 01.24.2013  

The Metro Spirit is a free weekly newspaper that serves readers in the Augusta and North Augusta area. Editorial coverage includes Richmond...

Metro Spirit 01.24.2013  

The Metro Spirit is a free weekly newspaper that serves readers in the Augusta and North Augusta area. Editorial coverage includes Richmond...