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Thomasville's Only Issue No.

December 16 - JANUARY 19 VOLUME 5 Our expertise is in your best interest.


Britney Glass Loan Officer

Heather Taylor Personal Banker

December 16 - JANUARY 19 VOLUME 5

Business Boost


Marketing Secret #1 - Perception

Jami Porter

M E E T T H E S T A F F 2 0 16 Annie Jones

Every year, I find myself limping toward the finish line. These last few months, always filled to the brim, always so good for business ­— often leave me worn out, exhausted and hopeful for brighter, calmer months ahead. 2016, like all its predecessors before it, has been filled with ups and downs, highs and lows, a little bit of bitter mixing with Nat Higdon the sweet. The older I get, the more I realize that’s par for the course, Vice President, Commercial Lending and this year, did the sweet outweighed the bitter? We’re doing okay. I’m looking forward to a quiet start to 2017, the chance to regroup, to set goals for The Bookshelf and also for myself. I find I’m sanest when I’m tackling to-do lists, when I’m focused on the bigger picture. I can’t wait to see what 2017 holds, but as usual, I’m grateful for the lessons learned these past twelve months. They’ve been hard, but good, and I wouldn’t trade them.

June Dollar Wow. 2016. If a year could spit, I'd be surfing. This has been a year of loss in my world. I lost people close to me, one in particular, Rod Durham, the former drama teacher at Leon High School. He was a touchstone for me, one who brought wonderful high school minds into my life. We shared a love of musical theatre, Christopher Durang and Janet Jackson, among other joys. I also lost my mother-in-law, a woman who was the finest example of humanity. Peggy Enlow made the world a better place merely because she existed in it. The loss of Rod and Peggy have left a hole in my heart. I do not think we should ever be expected to "get over" losing people we love. What I have found to be true is that we learn to live with the loss. The grief we feel becomes an acquaintance that often visits our home but is NEVER allowed to move in.

Having said that, 2016 has also been a year of personal accomplishment. I continue to teach and practice yoga which is bringing me mental, physical and spiritual discipline. I am blessed to have found people who share this passion with me. I will teach a leadership class again this coming year at the FSU College of Education. The college students' ideas, their perspective on the world, their broad-mindedness and their ability to love and to embrace diversity feed my soul to overflowing. These students are the leaders of the future. They bring me hope and joy. 2016 has reminded me of the value of living in the present moment. I am reminded that most often the only way through something is through it. I am also reminded of the outstanding people in my life {Grady Enlow} who remain stalwart and unwavering. Thanks to The Townie for reconnecting me with writing. My graduate school journalist professor, Laird Anderson, constantly pushed me to "find my voice." I am thankful to be back on that path.

Emily McKenna A friend of mine introduced me to the idea of choosing a word in January to be the theme for the year. I learned about this interesting alternative to the traditional resolution a little late, leaving me to think about possible words for 2017. I didn’t have a chance to choose a word for 2016 but November made it clear what word has been a theme throughout the year: Division. It also gave me my word for next year. On January 1 I will choose the word COMMUNITY to be the theme for my 2017. We are all only human beings and deserve to be treated as such and the same. Here is to 2017… what I expect will be a year of hard lessons all around. My hope is that we all have open minds and ears with a sprinkle of empathy and a dash of courage.

William Hamil While some anticipate the arrival of 2017 like a child yearning to discover what is under the Christmas tree, I feel that 2016 was a memorable year for me. Along with witnessing a brutal election cycle, I had the opportunity to travel abroad {amidst another crazy election in Britain} and discover some really cool places in this world.

Going off of Emily’s idea for a word of the year, I would describe 2016 as BUSY; from the college application process and filling out repetitive form after form to traditional senior responsibilities to work, I have scarcely found time to sit down. While I have been busy, it has been for good reason. Whether developing a new purchasing program specific to the pecan industry or performing in the Thomasville Music and Drama Troupe, none of my time has been wasted. If you wonder where to find me, I will probably be at the nut house this time of year {that is Southern Treats of Thomasville, behind the Toyota dealership} hoping to make someone’s Christmas shopping go a little easier. I hope that 2017 will be a great year for everyone!

Jami was born in Lincoln, Illinois, and is Vice President of Retail Banking and Operations at Thomas County Federal. She currently serves on the the Vashti Center Board of Directors, as Young Life Grady County Committee Chair, on Brookwood School's Parent Advisory Committee and on Cairo First United Methodist Church's Finance Committee. She has lived in Cairo for 18 years, worked in Thomasville for the last 6 years, and had worked in Thomasville for several years prior to having children. She and her husband of 18 years {!}, Joe, are parents to Kate {15}, Will {13} and a rescued puppy named Buddy. What led you to settle in Thomasville? My husband, Joe, is originally from Cairo. He moved back home from Macon, Georgia, in 1998 to take over the Nationwide Insurance Agency, which he still owns and operates today. We were married in 1998 and have lived here for the last 18 years. How did you and Joe meet? We met at a wedding in Lincoln, Illinois, while I was living in Chicago and he was living in Macon.

Davey Bray Reflections on the Year Past:

As the year came to a close, I did some thinking on time and where it goes. I believe it is similar to the lone sock that just vanishes apropos of nothing. 2016 seemed to fly by. Of the twelve months encompassing the year, I was out of town for a total of almost seven. A small job in Oxford, North Carolina, snowballed into the insanity of a full-fledged restoration. My faithful old Expedition finally died and I was forced to buy another vehicle. Then another one. Not the year for automobiles here at the Stylish House. Professionally, it was my best year since the crash in 2008. Strangely, all from a single project. Personally, I have accepted things about myself, my relationship and my career that have helped enrich those areas and give me a better idea of who I am and where I want to go in this crazy thing called life.

What is the best part of your job? One of the best parts of my job is working with different people in the community and being able to work with numerous non-profit organizations who collectively make our communities stronger. In addition to working with people, I have also always liked technology. At the bank I’m the IT Officer and have worked on numerous projects to enhance our services through the new technology. When you aren't working, where are you most likely to be found? Driving kids around! I have two active teenagers involved in soccer, dance and youth group activities. What does your ideal family day in Thomasville look like? Going on an adventure together – a day trip to Wakulla Springs, the Ichetucknee River or a day at the beach Desert island scenario ­— what Thomasville foods, and products are you stockpiling to take with? Grassroots coffee and Sweet Grass Dairy’s Green Hill.

— Jennifer W.

I wish each of you success and joy in all your pursuits for the New Year. May the mistakes of the past year be left behind with the turn of the calendar page. May the successes of the year grow tenfold in 2017. Have a stylish and happy holiday season! xoxox, Davey

Katie Reeves

Cherie Lee

2016 was an amazing year for ktcreative! I became an award-winning graphic designer thanks to the Georgia Press Association and The Townie! I was named one of Thomasville Magazine’s top 22 women business owners under 40. And I moved into a brand new office space. I am so grateful every day that I get to do what I love and have the most amazing clients in the world. I would say I’m #blessed; but that would be an understatement.

I moved back home a couple of years ago, to Thomasville, and as this last year progressed I have felt more and more of what makes people want to raise their families here. I’ve submerged myself and my family in the community. As a result, my love for Thomasville has grown immensely. Our sweet town is just big enough to have all that my heart desires for entertainment, fun and community. However, it’s also small enough to get anywhere I need to be in seven minutes flat. I love that. I have two {mostly} sweet boys. We have made a home here and really delved into the arts. I have been writing since I could hold a pencil, I completed my first children’s book when I was just a child myself. Before moving home, I was a travel writer for Southern Hospitality Magazine. It’s refreshing to be from a town that focuses so much on art. When I’m not carpooling kids to fine arts classes, I can be found submerged in one of my own hobbies. Collecting interviews for The Townie on a Saturday afternoon downtown, teaching and practicing Save Your Life Self Defense, leather crafting, or working on a book project into the wee hours of the morning. I love it here and being a part of The Townie just seals the deal. This is what home feels like.

On the homefront, my daughters turned 12, 11 and 3. Somehow, I now have teenagers and a three-nager. Next time I see you let’s hold hands and take deep breaths and you can remind me that this stage won’t last forever. My goals for 2017 are BIG; I want to run a half marathon by the end of the year. I might be crazy; but I’m pretty sure I can do it. I hope your goals for the coming year are BIG and that you have the courage to reach them! Happy 2017!

Dara Barwick The Good: 2016 was a 5-star year for my business. I was trusted with interesting projects from super clients, and I’ve had real fun working with everyone. I took some incredible trips during a year I didn’t think it was possible to take time away. We checked New Zealand off of our bucket list, and that was an unforgettable experience. The Bad: Our 5 year old grandson, Zack, fractured his wrist, but never slowed down. Our 2 year old, Luke, had stitches across his cute little right eyebrow, and our oldest, Cole, needs some teeth to grow back in, but curiously, he has started liking hamburgers since he’s had no front teeth.

The Wonderful: We all survived the 2016 election in spite of the crazy campaign months. God Bless America!

t o

r e a d ,

You probably know me as the creator of "Trill in the ‘Ville." One thing you probably didn’t realize is that I am also the generator of the Dance Card. I also write other features and articles as they come up, and I’ve been a part of The Townie team since 2013. WOWZA!

Clay{doh} Byars Wow, what a year. I have met a lot of new people and started walking along a new path. All people need a little grace and mercy; we are here, on this celestial ball, to help one another and build each other up, in all that we do. People, take time to rest, exercise, eat well, spend time with tthose you love and like, reflect, meditate and pray.

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The question that must be answered before deciding how to market your business is, “How can I be the market leader in my sector?” Leadership in the market is essential, so, who are your competitors? What are they doing and how can you become the leader? If you’re in the concept stage of a business you may believe that you’ll be the first to start this business or that you’ll be the first in this geography or the first to do the business a certain way. You may say, “No one is doing what I’m going to do.” One thing is a good bet. Most things are already being done, so you’ll need to have a smart, innovative twist up your sleeve to win customers over to your side. Once a mind is made up, it’s almost impossible to change it. I’m talking about the minds of your potential customers who are already doing business with the competition. Marketing is not about which business has the best product. Marketing is about perception. While superior products are certainly lifters of success, if you aren’t first in your sector – “the household name” – you’re in a battle of perception. How difficult must it have been for new companies to enter the market with Coca Cola, Kleenex, Band-Aid, Xerox, Jell-O, Advil, Tylenol and Saran Wrap? I bet you say "Kleenex" even if you’re blowing your nose with Scott tissue. Who was the second person to walk on the moon? Most of you will have to Google it. See? We’re saying “Google it”. The leading brand for search engines is in our minds. We don’t say, “Bing it” or “Yahoo it” even though those search engines ranked #2 and #3 in 2016. Google is the leader in the search engine category and has a stronghold on user perception. Whether your product is biscuits, airplanes, beer, lamp posts or sailboats, your sector has an established leader in the minds of customers. The perceived leader may be national, international or local. Marketing is a deep topic and not for the faint of heart. It’s your job as a small business owner to work with marketing experts, read everything you can find on the subject and get laser focused on the steps you must take to be the leader in your market. Remember, you must be first in the mind of the customer. Perception is what it’s all about. I perceive you to be a smart small business owner. Rev up your marketing today! The holidays are here. Again. It seems like we just went through this a few weeks ago. Maybe it is because the Christmas decor came out after Halloween this year.

— Dara B.

Whispers Psst... we love y'all, townies. Have a wonderful new year and we'll see you back on the third week of January!

t h e s e :

Our Clients Are Our Friends


Where Living is Easy Phone 229-226-3911

Which of the following statements would you most agree with? a) Marketing is easy as 1, 2, 3 or b) Marketing is unnecessary; selling is what matters. I’m guessing that most small business owners believe marketing is important, but I don’t believe either a or b is true.

Denise Purvis

The Ugly: Mama, at 83, broke her upper femur in a fall on Valentine’s Day evening. Her orthopedic surgeon said it “shattered like a light bulb”, so that has been quite challenging for her most of the year. My 90 year old mother in law became ill and has had a rough go of it lately, so that’s been hard on her. Go love on the older folks!

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Three-Day Intensive with Artist-in-Residence, Ron Thomson January 17-19, 2017


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December 16 - JANUARY 19 VOLUME 5

December 16 - JANUARY 19 VOLUME 5


Issue No.



Dance Card December 16-18 1


Kimberly Alderman Clay Byars June Dollar Catharine Fennell Benjamin Gardner William Hamil Annie Jones Cherie Lee Denise Purvis

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Story Time + Signing with Ben Wilder

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Poetic "has" Regress Sibling Canal Islands Helper Local Y Droop Tiny body part Pack Kind of Singer Tis the night before Christmas Jazz Ten Leapers George Washington’s home Halo Vivacity Seasoner makers Grating sound Legitimate Academy (abbr.) Pitted mushroom Meat alternative It's Under Kept {Homonym} and Covers Up? Marked with letters Kind of Slng Couple Female sheep Depending on chance Tyrannosaurus Rich dirt Praise False god graven image Allows Utilization Hawkeye State Tree Tear up Chilled

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The Bookshelf, 126 S. Broad Street 11a-1p Ben Wilder is the author of BIG AND SMALL, GOD MADE THEM ALL, a children's book a that presents God as the creator of everything- even the things we don't necessarily think about all the time. He will read his book for story time at 11 and be in the store to sign copies until 1:00pm. Bring the kiddos!

Signing with Tracy Revels

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TOSAC Storefront Theater, 117 S. Broad St. Times Vary Inspired by the classic American film, “It's a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play” is performed as a 1940s live radio broadcast in front of a studio audience. Few actors perform the dozens of characters in the radio play as well as produce the sound effects. For more info or tickets, call 229-226-0863 or visit

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Dara Barwick Denise Purvis

Contributing Writers



Social Media

J. David Bray, Jr. Sarah Esra Denise Purvis Kelly Samek







Publisher Jennifer Westfield

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Editor in Chief



Our Staff +


TOSAC presents “It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play”



___! {call attention} Build up Attack Group Capital of Portugal American sign language Purple fruit Very large truck Sports channel __ Nevada {mountain range} Loafed Salvation Army Ringers Thespian Kimono sash Speak indistinctly Always Capital of Vanuatu Long time periods Cautious gambler Gross national product {abbr.} Tree Topper Artist's creation Lubricated Sever Dined Marrow Not many {2 wds.} Ranch hand Wort Door-nament? Wanders Soured Digit Lilly-like plant Soothing agents Musical composition Irresponsible 52 weeks Thirteen Ripen Physician IOU part Male


The Bookshelf, 126 S. Broad Street 2-4p Tracy revels is the author of Upon the Face of the Waters: A Brief Hstory of Wakulla Springs, which "traces the park's long history as both a natural treasure and a historic site." For more information contact,

December 29, January 5, 12, 19 TOSAC Book Club TOSAC Storefront Theater, 117 S. Broad St. 7-8p Every week we pull out a script and read together as the different characters. Some weeks we continue from the previous week's script if the script is long. Some weeks we may watch the movie that goes along with a script we've read. It's a lot of fun and a great way to get used to reading in a theatrical setting if you've never been in a production before. For more information, contact Joana Russell at 229-516-3605.

January 14 Another Night of Bluegrass featuring “The Spinney Brothers” Thomasville Municipal Auditorium, 144 E. Jackson St. 7:30p, $10 Traditional Bluegrass at its best! WTUF and Thomasville Main Street bring you Another Night of Bluegrass featuring the Spinney Brothers. The cornerstone of the Spinney Brothers musical identity is the sound of traditional, southern-flavored bluegrass music. Tickets are available in the Thomasville Visitors Center.

January 16 Hands on Thomas County MLK Day of Service Various Sites in Thomas County 9a-12p Contact Angela Kiminas about volunteering opportunities at 229-226-5200 or at

January 19 Cocktails and Commerce The Pink Valise, 108 N. Broad St. 5-7p Please join us the third Thursday of every month for networking, hors d'oeuvres, beer & wine and door prizes! Each month will be sponsored by a Chamber member business and held at their location.

Thomasville Entertainment Foundation Presents Orpheus Chamber Orchestra Thomasville Center for the Arts, 600 E. Washington St. 7:30p, $38 adults, $15 students A standard-bearer of innovation and artistic excellence, Orpheus combines the intimacy of a chamber ensemble with the richness and warmth of an orchestra. This program of Romantic-period works features Israeli violinist Vadim Gluzman in Tchaikovsky’s beloved Violin Concerto, Op. 35. For more information or tickets call 229-226-7404 or visit

Where has the year gone? Every year I say this, and every year it’s true. This year has given us plenty to read about, plenty to write about, and I’m so grateful for the books I’ve read and the things I’ve learned. If your resolutions for 2017 include a desire to read more, here’s a list to get you started. These are my favorite books of the past year; they’re the best I think 2016 had to offer. + The Mothers by Brit Bennett. The Mothers was the best book by a debut novelist this year. Brit Bennett’s in her mid-twenties, but she writes with authority, and I thought her novel about Nadia Turner, a young woman coping with the consequences of her teenage decisions, was just beautiful. The entire work is powerfully written, but the most memorable portions come from the narration of Nadia’s church mothers; their chorus is woven intricately through the chapters, and I was completely enraptured. + The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead. I know many of my customers roll their eyes at books Oprah’s chosen to add to her favorites list, but the fact is: She knows how to pick them. The Underground Railroad just won the National Book Award, and I assure you the win was well-deserved. Colson Whitehead’s imagination is on grand display; he takes the underground railroad of our history classes and wonders how a literal train secreting slaves from South to North might have survived and saved lives. This book left me tearful and aching, in the most important, best ways. + Forty Rooms by Olga Grushin. This title might be a little less familiar to you; I read Olga Grushin’s novel way back in February, but it made a lasting impression, and I’m pleased to put it on my best of 2016 list. The premise of Forty Rooms is simple; each woman, throughout her life, inhabits different rooms: the childhood bedroom where she grew up, the college library where she broke up with her boyfriend, the chapel where she married her husband. Olga’s fictional main character {who is never actually named} inhabits 40 of these rooms, and each one is a chapter of the book. That set-up, that premise, is so smart, and it gives us a book filled with nuance, with questions about femininity and fate. I’ve put this in the hands of quite a few customers, and so far, no one’s come back disappointed. + Sons and Daughters of Ease and Plenty by Ramona Ausubel. While customers and reviewers were raving about Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney’s The Nest {which I liked a lot!}, I was enthralled by Sons and Daughters of Ease and Plenty. The novel is about a wealthy family who loses everything, and how each family member copes with that deep loss. Although I loved almost everything about this novel, what I really adored was the way Ramona Ausbuel writes children. So often in adult novels children are secondary and flat; here, Ausubel writes nine-year-old Cricket as one of the heroines, without ever making the reader feel like she’s reading yet another coming of age tale. You’ll become completely attached to the entire family; their qualms and frustrations and heartbreaks will become yours. Cricket, though? You’ll fall in love with her. + This Is Where You Belong by Melody Warnick. I love a good memoir, but perhaps more specifically, I love those memoirs mixed with elements of the personal growth genre: The Happiness Project, Better Than Before, What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast. These are the books that challenge me and make me better, and my favorite this year was This Is Where You Belong. The style is similar to The Happiness Project, but this time, the premise is all about place. What makes a place home? How can we build community right where we are, even if we don’t like where we are very much? This book should be in the hands of community leaders, of new faces in new places all over the country. Melody Warnick has done her research on place-making, but she also offers practical tips about walking and biking and shopping small. This Is Where You Belong is a mustread if you want to love where you live. + My Name Is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout. This novel is so quiet, I’m not sure if it will fight its way to the top of other “best of ” lists. Elizabeth Strout’s well-known in literary circles, but her short story collection, Olive Kitteridge, made her a more household name. I read Olive Kitteridge, but I didn’t enjoy it, so I was interested to see if I’d like her new novel {almost novella}, My Name Is Lucy Barton. Guess what? I loved it. The book is almost a complete flat-line, without major plot twists or character growth. Instead, Lucy Barton is the portrait of a mother-daughter relationship, seen entirely in one hospital visit. That’s what makes the book so brilliant. + When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi. I read When Breath Becomes Air at the start of 2016, but it made an impression that lasted far beyond January. When 36-year-old neurosurgeon Paul Kalanithi is diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer, he suddenly becomes the patient he’s spent years training to serve, and he spends his last months on earth writing about dying. His thoughts don’t read like lessons; instead, he earnestly explores life, reminiscing on what’s made his special, what makes all of the lives we lead worth living. Kalanithi’s writing is intelligent, somehow both beautiful and scientific, and his wife’s essay on his death is beautiful. I still tear up just thinking about this one. + Commonwealth by Ann Patchett. Dysfunctional family stories are my favorite, so when a novel begins with a kiss between neighbors and friends, I’m hooked. That initial kiss in Ann Patchett’s new novel launches a series of events that affects both of their families for decades, and somehow Ann weaves each family member’s story together beautifully. Part coming-of-age, part family drama, Commonwealth spans the generations without ever feeling too monumental for the reader to care about each individual character and story. I’m not sure any other author could have pulled this off quite so well. + Another Day in the Death of America by Gary Younge. I tend to read more fiction than non-fiction, but I do try to read books outside my typical interest and genre. Another Day in the Death of America isn’t a fun read, but it is an important one. Books are sometimes the best ways for us to educate ourselves, to step outside of our own lives and into someone else’s. Like Jill Leovy’s Ghettoside, Another Day in the Death of America explores gun violence in our culture. On an average day in America, seven children and teens will be shot and killed. Gary Younge chose a random day in 2013 and explored the lives of each child who died from gun violence that day. The result is a heartbreaking collection of true stories, each putting a human face on the statistics we often skim over each day. + You’ll Grow Out of It by Jessi Klein. Here’s my favorite laugh-outloud book of the year. Give this one to all your girlfriends, to your book club members, to your sisters. You’ll Grow Out of It is hilarious and real; Jessi Klein’s stories are authentic, and her struggles are relatable. I devoured these essays {there’s only one I really didn’t love}, and I kept wanting to read parts aloud to everyone I knew. If 2016 was a little rough for you {and I think we’ve all felt that way at some point in the last 12 months}, You’ll Grow Out of It ought to help.

— Annie Butterworth Jones Co-Owner + Managing Partner,​​T he Bookshelf​ Hands On Thomas County’s Annual


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