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Table of

Contents IN EVERY ISSUE

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6 Staff 8 Letter From the Editor 10 T&G News 66 T&G Wish List 72 Literature 75 Events 80 Calendar 82 Advertisers

FEATURES

14 So Simple. So Fresh.

HOME AND GARDEN

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TASTE AND TOAST

42 Switch-a-side 47 Pour it on

HEALTH AND BEAUTY 70 Beauty Fix

LIFE AND STYLE

52 From Thursday to Saturday and Back 55 Musically Noted 58 Refuge Photo Contest Winners 60 Brawling for their Community 68 A Cup of Lindsay Jo

20 DIY with Amy Taylor 22 Adding up to the Holidays 29 Meet the Locals 33 Where the Cold Wind Blows 38 It’s a Southern Thing 46 Christmas Tour of Homes

On the Cover

Foley Holditch, design contributor and co-owner of Thyme, decorated a “High Cotton Tablescape” including pieces from Giggleswick, Purple Elephant, Sprout Home Garden Baby, The University Florist and Thyme. Photography by Claire Massey

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NOVEMBER 2013


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a product oF HoriZon oF Mississippi P.O. Box 1068 | Starkville, MS 39760 www.townandgownmagazine.com

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cLaire MasseY Reproductions in whole or in part, without written permission, is strictly prohibited. No responsibility can be assumed for unsolicited manuscripts, articles or photographs. We reserve the right to edit submissions before publication. Town & Gown is a free magazine published monthly and distributed in and around Starkville and the Golden Triangle area. Subscriptions are available for mail customers. For subscriptions or inquiries, write Town & Gown Magazine, P.O. Box 1068, Starkville, MS, 39760, or call 662-323-1642.

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Editor

Letter from the

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his summer might be lasting way longer than we wanted or expected, but finally the weather has become a little cooler! Fall always brings out a different side of me. Fall decorations, cozy slippers and the smell of autumn candles burning with a cup of hot tea steaming on a cool day is all I can think about this season. Trying to top the Gentlemen’s issue was a tough challenge. However, after finishing this issue I think we have surpassed it. What a privilege it was to be in the same kitchen with Chef Matt Bronski, former Team Chef for the 1996 Culinary Team USA and corporate chef of the Eat With Us group. The Shrimp and Grits were divine! Then, not only did we visit with charitable people throughout the community including the Mississippi Brawl Stars and Vincent and Linda McGrath with Vin and Lin Glass Crafts, but did you know this was the 45th year anniversary for the Starkville-MSU Symphony? Holidays are right around the corner as well. Amy Taylor brought Five Things You Must Try this November and Designers’ Gallery’s designer, Marysue Purrett, shows what to do to get ready for the Christmas holidays with three decorative trees that are trending this winter. Just another great month to be in the know about how to get in the spirit early this year – literally! Follow us on our Twitter and like us on Facebook for behind-the-scene photos, events, contest and more! And don’t forget our weekly newsletter. Send us an email to info@townandgownmagazine.com with the subject “newsletter” and we will add you to our list! Look on our instagram to see our newest contest for this month and next. You’re always a winner with Town and Gown Magazine! Happy Reading,

Claire Massey Editor

For our Readers Subscribe

Get Town and Gown Magazine delivered right to your doorstep! Subscribe for $48 a year, $24 for six months or $4 for one time. To order call 662-3231642 or email info@townandgownmagazine.com.

Weddings or Engagements January is our Bridal issue! Wedding and engagement announcement pricing is listed at townandgownmagazine. com. Submit 15-20 wedding photos to info@townandgownmagazine.com for review to be featured in Town and Gown Magazine.

Events

Town and Gown Magazine would love to be at your next event. If your organization or business is having an event please email info@townandgownmagazine.com a month before event date. We cannot promise we will be at all events, but we will try!

If we missed out

Send us your event photos with names from left to right (if available) and a brief description of event to info@ townandgownmagazine.com or mail or drop off a disc to 304 Lampkin St., Starkville, MS 39759.

Give a Town andGown! Town and Gown Magazine offers gift cards for subscriptions. Call us at 662323-1642 to order. Pricing listed above under subscription.

Previous Issues

Miss an issue? We can ship a copy of any previous issue to you for only $4. Call us at 662-323-1642.

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By Lindse y Nor man

Adele Elliott

Lindsey Norman talks with Local author of Columbus, MS

LN: How did you get your start as a writer? AE: While I was in college at the University of New Orleans, I wrote some short stories that won awards. I also have an opinion column in The Columbus Dispatch, as well as my recent novel Friendship Cemetery.

LN: What inspired you to write Friendship Cemetery? Cemetery AE: The Friendship Cemetery is an actual place in Columbus, Miss., but other

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than the location, the book is 100% fiction. I wanted to turn this idea of two young women sitting in the cemetery into a novel instead of a short story. Whenever I sat down to begin writing this novel the story just came to me.

LN: Where do you see yourself as an author in 5-10 years? AE: Even though I have been busy with book signings, radio shows, and my weekly column, I have started another novel that I would like to publish once I am done with it. I love to write fiction and hope to continue doing so down the road in my career.

Town Holly Jolly’s November 11 & 12 West Point Christmas Open House

December 2 Columbus Christmas Parade

November 17 Starkville Christmas Open House

December 4 & 5 Starkville Holiday Bazaar

November 23 Columbus Holiday Farmers’ Market

December 6 Columbus Wassail Fest & Tree Lighting

November 29 Starkville Black Friday Bonanza

December 7 Starkville Pilot Club “Breakfast with Santa” at Applebee’s

December 2 Starkville Christmas Parade

December 8 Christmas Tour of Homes


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Social Like Us on Facebook @townandgownmag

Follow Us on Instagram @townandgown

Follow Us on Twitter @townandgownmag1

Miss. Brawl Stars @msbrawlstars We had so much fun tonight with @townandgownmag1. Look forward to the upcoming issue & come back for a visit anytime! Sullivan’s Office @SullivansOffice @townandgownmag1 Thanks! We love your magazine! Great article on Hardaway Whitworth - Tyson is a member! 12

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Will + Heather H

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eather SueZann Reed and William Morris Vail were united in marriage at six o’clock in the evening on August 31, 2013, at The Stables in Starkville. The elegant vintage ceremony was officiated by Reverend Barry Hathcock of West Point. Heather is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Dayle Reed of Starkville. She is the granddaughter of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Wardlaw of Okolona and Mrs. Margaret James and the late Mr. Gerald James of Starkville. Will is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Vail of Montpelier. He is the grandson of the late Mr. and Mrs. William Henry Clarke and the late Mr. & Mrs. Marris Vail. Nuptial music was provided by Jeff Cummings of Starkville, keyboard Bobby Shannon of Starkville, and vocalist Reverend Barry Hathcock of West Point. Given in marriage by her parents and escorted by her father, the bride wore a custom gown by Justin Alexander. The fitted mermaid silhouette featured layers of alabaster tulle and embroidered lace. Covered buttons and beaded illusions tulle accented the back of the gown, which flowed into a chapel-length train. In her hair, the bride wore a romantic flower comb by Bel Aire that was accented with Alencon lace. She carried a bouquet of green hydrangeas, pink roses, pink esperance, and peachy-pink hypericum berry. Attending the bride as matron of honor was Anna Johnson Nickels. Bridesmaids were Amanda Brackin, Kinsey Rico Brooks, Kaley Rico Harris, Claire Eaves Patterson, and Catherine Trull. They wore a blossom pink Allure designer dress that was strapless with a sweetheart bodice that was asymmetrically ruched into multiple floral accents. Father of the groom Kenneth Vail served as best man. Groomsmen were Joey Brackin, William Brooks, Mark Bullman, Hayden Nickels, Keith Quinn, and Cody Shows. They wore a Jean Yves steel gray tux with matching pink tie. Ushers included Taylor Brunson, Randall Chriswell, Jared Daniels, and Hunter Johnson. The flower girls were the bride’s cousin Katherine Gault and the groom’s daughter Caroline Vail. The groom’s nephew served as ring bearer. The bride’s friend Laken Christopher served as her proxy.

Following the ceremony the bride’s parents hosted a vintage-style reception in which guests were welcomed with lemonade and pineapple mint tea and feasted on gourmet cuisine, such as carved beef tenderloin, grilled chicken kabobs, jumbo peeled shrimp in an antique wooden boat, mashed potato station, fruit/vegetable/cheese montage, B.L.T. bites, and Captain Rodney’s dip. The bride and groom danced their first dance to the song “Me and You” by Kenny Chesney and the bride and father danced to “Memories” by Elvis Presley. The band Jeff & Jeff performed for the gala event. Guests lit sparklers as Will and Heather left the reception. november

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So Simple. So Fresh.

“I’m keeping the ingredients close to home, using farm raised products, like our [Eat With Us group] tomatoes. We are looking at different farms and putting Mississippi catfish on our menu. The catfish are raised in Tuscaloosa, Ala. which is within 60 miles of our restaurants. It doesn’t get any more local than that.” -Matt Bronski

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More on Matt Bronski at eatwithus.com

Q&A

What is your favorite sauce?

“There just happens to be a brand new sauce coming out at Harvey’s, a pomodoro sauce made with fresh garlic, extra Virgin olive oil, fine ripened plum tomatoes, and basil. It’s a very simple, but universal sauce that is flavorful, healthy and light, and can be used on any food.”

What is your favorite dish? “Food! I love going to local restaurants and to our own restaurants. When I travel, I go to every restaurant I can to experience other people’s philosophies. If there was a favorite dish, it would be a thick juicy steak topped with an aged blue cheese.”

What next? “We are doing a movement on a glutenfree analysis of the Sweet Peppers menu to provide customers with a good quality meal based on their eating preference. We will keep our menus affordable and seasonal instead of trendy, and focus on changing up our menus more often, using seasonal ingredients. As a family restaurant group, we will continue to cater to families and supply food for all ages and all groups of people.”

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By Ric helle Putnam Pho t og r aph y b y Ashle y Co vin

att Bronski’s love for food began in the kitchen of his childhood home in Detroit, Michigan with his mother, Marcy Bronski. “We had home cooked meals every single night,” said Matt, who spent much of his time after school and during the day helping in the kitchen while his father, Stanley Bronski, supported their family of seven. When it came time to choose classes for East Detroit High School, Matt selected the culinary arts, thinking it would be the easiest way out of high school. That was one of the best decisions he ever made, but not because it was easy. “It turned out to be very competitive,” said Matt. “We have a polish background, so it became more than just polish food. It became creative.” After Matt graduated high school, he hired on with a stern local chef who had high expectations and accountability standards. Under his wing, Matt started his college apprenticeship with the American Culinary Federation. He learned modern

and classical cooking and entered various chef competitions in the region. “I was working with the chef and going to tryouts when I was selected for the Michigan Culinary Team,” said Matt. “It was an honor to learn from the top five chefs in Michigan.” Matt’s team researched and developed menus. In 1992, they took those menus to Frankfurt, Germany to compete against 40 plus regions. “We competed in different categories,” said Matt. “Each person was eligible to select one of each category. Ours was a competition platter designed with one specific ingredient or animal.” Matt’s team focused on the wild game of pheasant. In preparing the meal, the team had to exhibit butchery skills and cooking techniques using 100 percent of the animal’s components, showing no waste. “It was difficult, but soon it became an everyday thing,” said Matt. “I think the challenge benefits me today because I learned to utilize sub-prime ingredients.” The 1992 team earned a Gold Medal. That year, Matt graduated Oakland Community College with a certification from the American Culinary Federation. november

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International Cuisine The Best:

Frankfort, Germany – “The food they do in Germany is exactly what I learned. German cooking is very simple, traditional and it is passed on. Good wholesome, simple cooking.”

Runners Up:

Prague, Czechoslovakia – “The food is amazing, with pasta and seafood very lightly seasoned or enhanced. You actually taste the quality of the food and not just kill it with overbearing spices and toppings.” Dijon France - “Probably had some of the best food I’ve had in France, the hearty sauces, though not very healthy were very good and didn’t overwhelm the food.”

Holland and Amsterdam – “A little more on the “foo-foo” end of things, not really so simple. But the meals I’ve eaten there were good.”

Least Favorite: Paris, France

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The Famous Shrimp & Grits not taking something “Weandaremaking it what it’s not. We are enhancing what it “ is.

Back row: Drew Dixon, Harveys Columbus; Carnell McGee, Harveys Starkville; Danny Weldon, Fairpark Grill; Matt Bronski, Corporate Chef. Front row: Eric Steward, Harveys Tupelo; Leon Jefferson, Central Station Grill; John Cusanelli, Jackson Square Grill

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He then pursued a Bachelor’s Degree in Business at the Detroit College of Business. At 23 years old, he accepted his first executive chef position and was studying and practicing for the 1996 USA Culinary Team tryouts. “As the R & D {Research & Development} team for the United States, we did a lot of work out of mid-town Atlanta and with the CCA (California Culinary Academy) in San Francisco, Calif., as well as our home headquarters

in St. Augustine, Florida,” said Matt. He scored second highest in the Southeast Region and was selected as Team Chef for the 1996 Culinary Team USA, which would compete in Erfurt, Germany. “We were responsible for menu trends, whether seasonal or indigenous, and menu ingredients,” said Matt, “bringing those to the table to represent the United States in Germany.” The Culinary Team USA chef developed a philosophy called ecocuisine, Matt explained, which took the exact strategy of using sub-prime ingredients, but then

also arranging and displaying the food as the animal on the dish. “This didn’t go over too well with the Germans because they aren’t trendy,” said Matt. “I think playing with the shape of the food cost us.” The team earned a Bronze Medal for the United States. Retiring from competition, Matt started with an independent company to open, run and maintain restaurants in and around the Detroit area. But his retirement didn’t last long. He started competing locally, using culinary trends to influence new menu decisions. He tried out for and made the Michigan Culinary Team. For over three years they practiced together. “It costs of whole lot of money to send five people to Europe for four weeks,” said Matt, so the team did fundraisers. They also facilitated mutual fundraisers for local community colleges and different children’s hospitals, including St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. By splitting the donations, the culinary team helped other needy organizations. “In the course of three-anda-half years, we tried out and practiced, did research and development and took trips to experience different foods,” said Matt. “We went to farms and growers to see where the food came from, how it grows and what the limits are for different farms and organics.” The team put their presentations together, practiced hundreds of times, then packed up their indigenous ingredients, and left for Berlin, Germany to compete against the world.” According to Matt, every member of the Culinary Olympics is eligible for a gold medal based on a 40-point scoring system.


Everyone starts with 40 points and is judged on originality, flavor, texture, uniqueness and presentation. Five judges from five countries do a blind judging to assure there is no favoritism. Contestants aren’t allowed to post any flags or display any material relative to the country from which they hail. “We managed to earn a Team Gold for the state of Michigan and I was given an individual Gold for my efforts,” said Matt. “After the judging, we put out the American flag.” Before Matt received the call from the Eat With Us group, he spent eight years with SYSCO Food Service Corporation in Raleigh, N.C. targeting a corporate chef position with the company as he learned the procurement and profitability side of the food service industry. “I came home from work and I received a phone call from a person representing John Bean telling me about the opportunity in Columbus, Mississippi. It sounded very interesting and intriguing,” said Matt. “We set up a phone interview for that following Monday and I talked to Mr. Bean. It was a long phone conversation.” Completing several Skype interviews and getting to know each other face to face, Matt was impressed with John’s philosophy for running business. “The Eat With Us group has tools that no one else has, like the computer program, the costing program, and the reports they generate.” John Bean is a very successful entrepreneur who does it the right way, said Matt, who flew to Mississippi for a face to face interview and to cook for John and his partners. During the interview process, Matt learned more about the Eat With Us Group systems, which didn’t exist in the large restaurants across America. “I accepted the challenge to oversee 23 different restaurants with three different concepts, six whole service restaurants [The Grill and Harvey’s] and 17 Sweet Peppers Delis across four different states,” said Matt. “We shook hands and I took my life from Raleigh, N.C. to Starkville, Miss.” Matt has been a Mississippian for over a year now, but he looks forward to cooking in the South for a long time. “In all the Eat With Us restaurants, we are simply cooking,” said Matt. “We are not taking something and making it what it’s not. We are enhancing what it is.”

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HOME AND GARDEN

DIY with Amy Taylor Taylor, a Petal native and Starkville resident, is a Southern Mississippi graduate where she earned a Bachelor degree in broadcast journalism and obtained a Master’s degree in Agricultural and Extension Education from Mississippi State University. She is an avid do-it-yourself crafter, artist and has a passion for home design and projects.

5 Things TO TRY this November 21 Illuminated Pumpkin 32 Racy-Lacy Pumpkin 41 Fall Placemat Decor 51 Fall Topiary 59 Initial Door Hanger

Styled by: The Style Loft on Main Clothes: illa illa beige/navy romper, $40; Bijoux Stella heart necklace and earrings, $18; and Esmar necklace, $18. Hair styled by: Hair Express, Kaycee Coghlan 20

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Illuminated Pumpkin

For a new idea on pumpkin carving, try using an electric drill and outdoor holiday lights!

Materials: Electric drill Pumpkin Outdoor electric lights Other Fall dĂŠcor of your choice

Directions: 1. Decide on a pattern in which to drill your holes. Draw it out in dots, using a pen or marker. 2. After cutting the pumpkin open and scooping out the inside, drill holes following the pattern you drew. Cut a hole in the back large enough for inserting the lights, and your lighted pumpkin is finished! Experiment with different patterns and colored lights!

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Adding Up to the

Holidays By Becca Hor t on Pho t og r aph y b y Divian Conner Decor ations pr o vided b y Designer s Galler y

+ + Tradi tional Tree = Ornaments - $9.95 Floral - $12.95 Mesh - $14.95-22.95 22

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+ + D

ecorating the Christmas tree is surely a fond memory from anyone's past. This tradition is something that has definitely changed overtime - many of us can no longer pretend that we head out to the backyard and chop down the prettiest pine we can find. We shop for the tree, real or fake, and we love it. Tradition matters to us, whether we want to admit it or not. And what could be more traditional than the holidays? Whether decorating the Christmas tree or the outside of the house, the holidays truly are a family affair. Marysue Purrett, the designer at Designer's Gallery in Starkville, Miss. makes it clear through her amazing designs that there are no boundaries or extremes when it comes to decorating Christmas trees. You won't find individually wrapped ornaments at Designer's Gallery - instead, you'll find beautiful ornaments that have been carefully placed on one of the incredible trees in the store. The Gallery invites anyone and everyone to pick their trees clean. When it comes to Designer's Gallery, ornaments plus filters plus mesh equals one unforgettable holiday for any family.

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Bluebird Tree

Ornaments - $2.95-9.95 Floral - $8.95 Mesh - $14.95

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Rustic Tree

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Ornaments - $5.95-9.95 Floral - $3.95-17.50 Mesh - $14.95

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Make Your Home

Bulbtastic this

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Russell Hamilton graduated from Mississippi State University with a major in horticulture and he has been the owner of Deep Roots Nursery for over 13 years.

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Gardening with

Russell Hamilton

orcing bulbs to bloom out of their normal schedule isn’t as hard as you think. And using them in arrangements can add a splash of color to a room. There aren’t many choices for blooming plants during this time of year and adding bulbs to your decorating arsenal can really set a room apart from the normal fall/winter decorating schemes. And that doesn’t even include the fragrance that some have to add an extra zing here and there.

Planting Your Bulbs

Planting your bulbs is super easy. This part is definitely something the kids can help you with. You can either plant them in soil or just in your favorite shallow container. If you aren’t going to use soil then place gravel or glass beads in the bottom of the container. Use just enough to keep the bulbs out of the water. Be careful to only water when needed. There are glass vase-like planters that are specially made for this. They are bottle-neck on one end so that the container itself holds the bulb or bulbs above the water. Then you get see the roots growing down below, which is really cool.

Which Bulbs are Best?

Really that depends on you. If you like challenges go for the bulbs that require chilling. Examples of these types of bulbs would be tulips, iris, and grape hyacinths. These require a little more effort than bulbs that don’t require chilling in order to be forced but they can give you a large and unique color scheme to choose from. If you just want to plant them and forget them then pick bulbs like amaryllis and paper whites. If you are looking for the in between go for crocus and different types of daffodils. These bulbs can come in a variety of colors (except paper whites). Check them out at your local garden center to find just the color you are looking for.

Tips and Tricks for Forcing Bulbs Indoors Most all bulbs have to go through some type of cold period before they will bloom. Normally we plant these bulbs outside in the fall and they will naturally go through winter where they get the cold period they need to bloom. Naturally these bulbs bloom in spring. One of the easiest ways to force bulbs indoors is to buy bulbs that are already vernalized or have experienced this cold period already. You will normally see these bulbs advertised for forcing indoors since they have already been prepared. All you really have to do then is to plant them in your favorite container and wait a few weeks for them to sprout. Now if you want to force bulbs that don’t fall into this category you will need to do some planning ahead. The amount of time bulbs need to be exposed to cold temperatures is different for each type of bulb. You can easily query the internet on the bulb you want to force and find out how many weeks it will need. Then you simply place these bulbs in the crisper of your refrigerator for that amount of time and take them out and plant them. So just add the number of weeks the bulbs need the cold temperature and the number of weeks till bloom together and that’s how soon you need to start to get the bulbs blooming on a certain week. It is that simple. Nothing to it right? If trying to plan your color scheme out that far in advance isn’t something you want to play with then just stick to the bulbs that are all ready to plant.

When I’m Done Just Throw Them Away? Heck no! When you are done with them give them a little fertilizer and stick them in a place where they will be out of the way until the leaves start to change color as if they are fading away. Then take them out of your planter and plant them in landscape. When the next year rolls around they will jump back into their regular routine and bloom at their normal time. So don’t just throw them out. If you don’t have a place for them in your landscape give them to a friend that can use them. Be creative and see what cool combinations you can come up with. I promise it is easy enough for anyone to try. You can even buy forcing kits that contain everything you need to get a blast of color into your home. Go by your local garden center and see what they have for you to choose from. And while you are at it grab a kit for the kids too. They will have fun counting down the days till the first flower pops and at the same time they will be learning about the cycles of plant life.

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.. Announce your engagement or wedding with Town & Gown Magazine. .. For more information on submiting your wedding for a Wedding Feature visit townandgownmagazine.com

..

Call 662.323.1642 or email info@townandgownmagazine.com

1/3 - $50 . . 1/2 - $100 Full Page - $150 Announce Twoyour Page - $210 engagement or wedding with Town & Gown Magazine. ..

Photography by Divian Conner

For more information on submiting your wedding for a Wedding Feature visit townandgownmagazine.com

..

Call 662.323.1642 or email info@townandgownmagazine.com

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Meet the Locals... Vince and Linda McGrath By Ric helle Putnam l Pho t og r aph y b y Divian Conner

V

ince and Linda McGrath were both widowed when they married in 2004. Linda’s first husband, Ed Couvillion, passed away in 1992 and Vince’s first wife, Cindy Rose, in 1996. The couple lost two other loved ones to cancer in 2012: Kay Arnett Parvin and Nancy McGrath Dillon. “One of our good friends Kathi Parker cut and polished wine bottles into glasses for her son’s wedding,” said Linda. “After watching her demonstrate her technique, we decided this would be a nice hobby for us and would also give us a chance to recycle glass bottles in an artistic way.”

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Where can you get yours: Merle Norman and Luna Bella Denim & Lace Sundial

How to donate bottles:

Call Vin & Lin Glass Crafts at 662-324-3944 or bring used bottles to Town and Gown Magazine on 304 Lampkin St. in Starkville to donate.

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This so-called hobby became a mission for the McGraths. The money earned from their glass creations would be donated and used for financial assistance at the Center for Breast Health & Imaging through the Patient Assistance Program at OCH Regional Medical Center. Friends, family and three Starkville restaurants (Old Venice, Veranda, and City Bagel) began donating their wine, liquor, and beer bottles to the McGraths to be crafted into their unique designs. Elegant imprinted bottles too beautiful to cut, they fashioned into vases. “This summer the Community Theater saved its champagne bottles, which we cut and polished into snack dishes,” said Vince. Recently, the unWine event donated their empty bottles. “We are now cutting different sizes of glasses, like on-the-rocks, drinking glasses, and wine and juice glasses.” Three local boutiques (Merle Norman/Luna Belle, Denim & Lace, and Sundial) display the McGraths’ cut glass as part of their merchandise. The 929 Coffee-Bar, owned by Linda’s sons Joe and Neil Couvillion and their wives Carrie and Hava, serves beer in the 12-ounce glasses, cold coffees in the 16-ounce glasses, and espresso and wine in the four-ounce glasses. “We contributed over 400 glasses made mostly from wine bottles for their coffees and beers, and glasses made from beer bottles for customers who bring wine to their establishment,” said Linda. For the McGraths, round and oblong glass bottles work best for cutting and polishing. Square and sculptured bottles are perfect for flower vases and oil lamps. The tops of the bottles are too pretty to throw away, explained Linda, so they serve as candle holders.


“One of our friends found a unique candle holder online,” said Linda, “and we began displaying this at one of the local boutiques.” For their daughter-in-law, the McGraths duplicated a plant holder found online that was made from the top and bottom of a bottle. One MSU sorority purchased 30 glasses to use as table vases for a Rush event. “Last spring some of the bottle tops were given to MSU art students for their semester projects.” As its annual fundraiser in December, the MSU Student American Institute of Floral Designers plan to use the bottle tops and glasses to demonstrate holiday table arrangements. In addition, the McGraths donated several unique bottles to the local Jilly Bean Pail of Paint for its students to melt for artwork. Community is important to Vince and Linda. For over 22 years, Vince served on the faculty of Mississippi State University in the College of Education Leadership and Foundations before retiring in June 2010. After moving to Starkville in 1985, Linda, as a LaLeche League Leader, became involved with breast feeding education and support. An MSU alumnus, as are their five children, Linda is also a member of the MSU

President’s Commission on the Status of Women. “It is only natural that we would be active in community service here in Starkville,” said Vince. “Our home for almost 30 years has provided education for each of our five children from elementary to university degrees, as well as spiritual support through St. Joseph Catholic Church.” A community grows stronger only if its residents contribute time and efforts to support its growth into the future, he said. “Since his retirement from MSU,” said Linda, “we are a team volunteering with the Starkville School District Family Centered Programs.” Vince and Linda also served as co-chairs for the Health Section of the Oktibbeha County Excel by 5 until the county achieved certification in August 2012. Through innovative inspiration, the McGraths have built much more than a business, because the McGraths aren’t in business for themselves. They’re in the business of helping others. “Our time given to this project is done in memory [of Kay Arnett Parvin and Nancy McGrath Dillon] and in the hope that all women can have preventive procedures to ensure long, healthy lives.

Through events like unWINE, we at the Partnership have a unique opportunity to not only promote tourism in Starkville, but also to further contribute to the quality of life for our residents by offering them a fun event that supports our business owners and creates economic impact for our city. Being able to donate the empty wine bottles to the McGraths created one more way for us to give back to our community through our event, as we are able to assist them in their charitable efforts which support such a great cause! -Greater Starkville Development Partnership

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DIY with Amy Taylor

Racy-LACY Pu mpkin This is a fun project for a new spin on the traditional pumpkin! Vamp it up with metallic spray paint and lace.

Materials: Pumpkin Spray paint (gold, silver, bronze) Lace

Mod Podge, standard glue or spray adhesive (I recommend thinning the Mod Podge/glue slightly with water.)

Directions: 1. After spray-painting the pumpkin and letting it dry, attach the lace by applying the glue or spray adhesive to the fabric, then smoothing it onto the side of the pumpkin.

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2.Be creative by using different colors and finishing it off with ribbon! For the black lace one, I selected an oddly-shaped pumpkin, simply for its unique shape.


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WHERE THE COLD WIND BLOWS Forrest Blackbourn is a Lecturer of Spanish at Mississippi State University and a Ph.D. Candidate in Romance Languages at The University of Alabama. His critical, creative, and journalistic works have appeared in The Coastal Review, Vision 2011: Paying It Forward, Deep South Magazine, and Divergencias: Revista de estudios lingüísticos y literarios.

Outdoor Spaces & Fireplaces

Home of Kitty Henr y Pho t og r aph y b y Sco tt Lipse y

O

ne of the most notable and best ways to cope with this time of year when it starts to get a bit colder is with an outdoor fireplace. If you have had the privilege of going camping in late fall or early spring – camping in the winter and summer is much less of a privilege – you have hopefully experienced the intoxicating hypnotic of the dancing flames, the smoky scent, and the sound of wood cracking that are all produced by a campfire. Many adults only go camping on rare occasions, if ever. However, many have brought the campfire aesthetic to their homes with outdoor fireplaces. One option is the traditional approach of firewood, while some who desire a fire prefer the convenience of a gas line. However, the convenience of gas fireplaces requires the compromise of some of the most prized visceral elements associated with those that burn wood. This can

easily be compared to grilling at home. Some cooks prefer the flavor of charcoal, and others sacrifice a bit of flavor for the convenience of gas. As a person that has the tendency to be a bit too idealistic from time to time, I would like to say that I would never entertain the idea of having a gas fireplace because of a notable compromise of the aesthetic that I exceedingly enjoy. On the other hand, the practical side of me realizes that it would be very nice to enjoy a fire frequently instead of once in a blue moon. In addition to the option of wood or gas, there are several options in regard to the housing of the fire. One can go to Lowe’s, The Home Depot, or any number of stores that specialize in home upkeep and décor and buy a fire pit at a fairly reasonable price. On the other hand, some decide to invest a bit more in this pivotal part of their outdoor rooms to create a truly unique and customized experience. november

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Home of Tomm y & Melit a Tomlinson Pho t og r aph y b y Clair e Masse y

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Fairly recently, I had the privilege of going to Tommy and Kathy Prentice’s home in Starkville on a Saturday night for a get-together with long-time friends of their family. I was told ahead of time that they were planning on building a fire. I was very excited because I have always felt that there is something genuinely special about sitting around with wonderful people under a crisp, starry night in front of a fire that produces smoke that seems as if it will eventually reach the stars; even though we know that it will not. As I walked out of the back door to Mr. and Mrs. Prentice’s patio, the first thing that I noticed was a brick fireplace with a chimney. In front of a raging fire under channeled, billowing smoke, I had the idea of a topic that I deemed appropriate for the November issue. I remained silent and observed the fugue of the flames as those present told stories from the old days and laughter echoed through the night. I remembered many nights in front of a fire with great friends in Tuscaloosa, Ala., and I realized that building and enjoying a fire isn’t just something that has always been very special to me. It’s very special to a lot of people. In addition to enjoying Mr. and Mrs. Prentice’s outdoor space with a fireplace, I had the opportunity to see those belonging to Kitty Henry, Sharon Oswald, Tommy and Melita Tomlinson, and Hardy and Melanie Mitchell. Many of these outdoor spaces were designed by Southern Green Keepers of Starkville. Some are more similar than others, but they each have a certain uniqueness, thereby making Southern Green Keepers’ clients true owners of their

outdoor spaces. As I previously mentioned in regard to the desire to have a wood-burning or gas-burning outdoor fireplace, some Starkville residents have truly found the best of both worlds in which no compromise of the campfire aesthetic is required to achieve the convenience of frequently lighting a fire. That is, Southern Green Keepers designs outdoor, wood-burning fireplaces that have a gas starter. With that said, owners of one of these fireplaces can simply turn on the gas, light the fire with a wand, and turn the gas off a few minutes later. In addition to this optimum convenience, it also seems to be far more cost-effective than running a fire on natural gas for an extended period of time. Among the outdoor spaces that I had the privilege to see, those belonging to Kitty Henry and Tommy and Melita Tomlinson are the most similar. Ms. Henry calls her space a pavilion, and she stated that now she is “loving [her] backyard every day.” In inquiring as to her inspiration to build such an elaborate outdoor room, she said that it “started with the pool and just grew from there.” Her pavilion has a very warm, reflective, and private feel with dark, stained wood on the ceiling and curtains that can be closed to divide the fire space from the rest of the outdoor area. The ceiling of Mr. and Mrs. Tomlinson’s fire space is a bit higher, and it is made from a pine that has a light stain. This creates more of an open feel for the outdoor area. Additional bells and whistles are a flat-screen television and beautiful fountain in Mr. and Mrs. Tomlinson’s space and an outdoor shower and bathroom in Ms. Henry’s.

Home of Har dy & Melanie Mitc hell Pho t og r aph y b y Clair e Masse y

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Home of Shar on Osw ald Pho t og r aph y b y Sco tt Lipse y

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Home of Tomm y & K at h y Pr entice Pho t og r aph y b y Tomm y Pr entice

Other truly unique outdoor spaces that I had the opportunity to see belong to Sharon Oswald and Hardy and Melanie Mitchell. Ms. Oswald’s space is brick throughout, and the weathering of the brick composing the fireplace gives it a practical and humble feel. It is apparent that Ms. Oswald uses her outdoor fireplace very frequently. On the other hand, Melanie Mitchell said regarding the design that she simply “wanted a Southwest feel.” From the strategic imperfections of the cement on the fireplace to the dark, antiquated look of cypress wood, the Mitchells have certainly achieved what they desired. Regarding their use of the outdoor space, Mrs. Mitchell said that they “spend more time outside than inside” and that when the weather permits they light a fire every night that they are home. In my discussions with these people who live in Starkville, they all highlighted the importance of their fireplaces for the purposes of entertaining guests at their homes. However, many also indicated how much they enjoy these wonderful additions to their homes even when they do not have guests over. A fireplace really enhances the enjoyment of a cup of coffee in the morning or glass of wine in the evening. There is only a short period of time in which the weather in North Mississippi is conducive to having a fire on a patio with family and close friends, and we should make the most of it. Let’s leave the cell phones in the house and enjoy a more natural, evening light and warmth. The pictures will never do the experience justice, and they can be posted on Facebook later. Whatever text messages and emails that may be waiting on us will still be there when we go back into the house. Notwithstanding this certainty, the fire will burn out, and we will eventually have to go to bed. november

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It's a Southern Thing

High Cotton Tablescape Pho t og r aph y b y Clair e Masse y S ty led b y Fole y Holditc h Tablescape pr o vied b y: Gigg le wic k Pur ple Elephant Spr out Home Gar den Bab y The Univ er sity Flor is t Th yme

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4.

5. 6.

Get this Look

1. Peters Pottery Deer, $110; Purple Elephant. 2. McCartys Pottery casserole dish with squirrel lid, $80; The University Florist. 3. The Good Earth Pottery El Dorado and Grecian Coin collection pieces, $26-172.00; Giggleswick. 4. Julian Mejia napkin holder and ring, $29-35; Thyme. 5. Copper owl, $9; Artichoke candle holder, $6.99; Sprout Home Garden Baby. McCartys Pottery candle holder, $35.50, The University Florist. 6. Castilian Glass bronze glass decanter and high ball glasses, $14.99-44.99; Thyme. Gold mirrored glass tray, $49; Sprout Home Garden Baby. Left: Cotton decorative branches; The University Florist, Peters Pottery Turkey, $150, Purple Elephant, Pheasant placemat, $19.99, Thyme. november

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A

s the holidays are starting to settle in, the seasonal decor is starting to emerge from cupboards and move onto dining tables. Setting a dining-room table full of decorations takes some time. The color combination and theme of the decor are important things to consider. Thankfully, we had a stylist's help: Ms. Foley Holditch. As she went around to some of Starkville's local shops, she picked out some pottery, cotton branches, candle holders, napkin rings, and more. Naturalism was her theme of choice, and warmth was displayed in her color palette. Everything you see has a naturalistic background, from the cotton branches to the deer-antler silverware. The Castilian Glass bronze decanter was thrown in the mix to give a slither of shine to the warm colors of gold and bronze. While there are many themes and color combinations one can choose from, this naturalistic feel of the fall season was ours.

THe Stylist

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Foley Holditch was born and raised in Starkville, Miss. She graduated from Mississippi State University with a bachelors degree in accounting and a masters in taxation. She is the Vice President of Finance for Bell Building Supply, Thyme and Simply Home and co-owner of Thyme.


DIY with Amy Taylor

Fal l PLACEMAT Pil low Here’s one for those of you who are up for a little needle and thread work! Create your own unique fall pillow using holiday placemats.

Materials: Placemats of your choice (2 placemats = 1 pillow.) Heavy-duty sewing needles Thread that blends with placemats Pillow stuffing

Directions: Make sure to lay your placemats with the GOOD SIDES facing each other, as shown here. You’re going to sew them together inside-out. 2. After threading the needle, leave a few feet of thread for slack. Start stitching at one corner of the fabric, staying as close to the seam as possible. Continue around the edge, leaving a gap large enough

for inserting stuffing. Stuff the pillow until it’s as full as you want, then stitch the gap closed. *If you can’t decide between patterns, use two different placemats for one pillow, so it’ll be interchangeable! They will need to be the same size though. This is also a great project for Christmas!

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TASTE AND TOAST

Pecan Pie Caramel Corn

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There are some dishes that are just tradition during the holidays. Whether you are looking for a dierent spin on an old favorite or a tasty way to use up leftovers, here are a few recipes that take tradition a step further. 42

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GET TO KNOW Lisa LaFontaine Bynum

Lisa LaFontaine Bynum is a freelance writer from Grenada, Miss. Her work has appeared in several publications in Mississippi. She is a graduate of Delta State University where she received a BA in Marketing and her MBA. In her free time, she enjoys food writing and photography, and documents her culinary happenings on her blog The Cooking Bride (thecookingbride.com). She currently resides in Brandon with her husband and son.

Pecan Pie Caramel Corn 8 cups popped popcorn 3/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans 1/2 cup maple syrup 1/4 tsp. salt

1 Tbsp. brown sugar 1/2 unsalted butter 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper. If using foil, light grease with cooking spray. Combine popcorn and nuts and spread in an even layer on the cookie sheet. Set aside. Combine syrup and brown sugar in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil and cook for five minutes, whisking frequently. Add butter, salt, and vanilla. Cook for an additional five minutes or until mixture is slightly thickened. Pour mixture over the corn and nuts. Stir with a wooden spoon until popcorn and nuts are evenly coated. Spread the mixture into an even layer again. Bake for 20 minutes, stirring halfway through the cooking time. Allow popcorn to cool before serving. Store in an airtight container at room temperature. Makes 8-10 cups of popcorn

Funts about Fac Thanksgiving In 1621 at Plymouth Plantation in Plymouth, Mass. Europeans joined by a group of Wampanoag Indians, gathered together to thank God for the blessings of the first harvest in the New World. Thanksgiving is celebrated in Canada on the second Monday of October. In 1789 George Washington declared the first national Thanksgiving Day as the last Thursday of November - varying each year depending on what day it fell. Congress made the day an official holiday in 1941. Benjamin Franklin wanted to make the turkey the official bird of the U.S. The bald eagle became the official U.S. bird soon after. According to American Automobile Association (AAA) 42.2 million Americans travel 50 miles or more on Thanksgiving holiday.

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Bacon-lovers delight!

Baked Eggs in a Nest 2 slices cooked bacon, diced 1-1/2 – 2 cups leftover stuffing 6 – 8 large eggs Salt and pepper to taste 2 slices cooked bacon, crumbled

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Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Prepare a muffin tin with cooking spray (individual silicon baking cups also work well). Fill baking cups approximately 2/3 full with the leftover stuffing. Using the back of a spoon, make a small indention in the center of each cup. Carefully crack an egg into each muffin cup. Season with salt and pepper. Bake for about 12 minutes or until eggs are just set but still soft to the touch. Carefully remove the baked eggs from the cup onto a serving plate. Garnish with the crumbled bacon. Serves 4-6


Chicken Thighs with Cranberry Sauce Glaze 3 pounds chicken thighs 1 Tbsp. butter 1 small onion chopped 2 cloves garlic, minced 2/3 cup ketchup

1/3 cup brown sugar 1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar 1 tsp. dry mustard powder 1 cup cranberry sauce Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Season chicken thighs salt and pepper. Arrange on a prepared baking sheet. Roast chicken thighs for approximately 25 minutes. In the meantime, melt

butter over medium heat in a large saucepan. Add the onion and cook until onion begins with turn translucent, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and continue to cook for one addition minute. In a small bowl, whisk together the ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar, mustard powder, and cranberry sauce. Add the cranberry sauce mixture to the pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and allow sauce to simmer until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. Remove pan from the heat. Season with salt and pepper. Generously coat the outside the chicken with the cranberry sauce glaze. Return chicken to the oven and cook for an additional 15 minutes or until cranberry sauce glaze begins to caramelize and and instant read thermometer reads 165 degrees. Remove chicken thighs from the oven allow them to rest for 15 minutes. Brush on additional cranberry glaze if desired. Serves 6

Turn on tradition.

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Christmas Tour of Homes

The Starkville Civic League’s traditional “Christmas Tour of Homes” will take you inside beautiful holiday-decorated homes on Sunday, December 8 from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 each and can be obtained from a Civic League member or one of the following business establishments in Starkville: The Book Mart, Designer’s Gallery or the Greater Starkville Development Partnership. Tickets may also be purchased at the Starkville Public Library on the day of the tour, where refreshments will be served. The Oktibbeha County Heritage Museum will be open. This is the annual fundraiser for the Civic League, which contributes greatly to Starkville’s civic activities. Five private, exquisitely-decorated homes will be on display, which will truly get you into the Spirit of Christmas. These homes range from a home in Starkville’s first subdivision, Oktibbeha Gardens, which was a favorite place for seeing the most spectacular Christmas decorations in Starkville for many years, to two beautiful homes of the 1800’s. These contain much of the town’s history – from the very first aviation to the oldest home on the tour. A 9-mile drive (18 minutes) through the rural countryside (known for its dairy history) takes you to Browning Creek in the quaint community of Oktoc to tour two striking homes built in the 2000’s. The Christmas Tour of Homes Committee chaired by Janey Stubbs and co-chaired by Jane Loveless with committee members, Cindy Johnson, Charlotte Smith and Nelda Starks have strived to make this tour one to be long remembered. Each home is uniquely different and their decorations will be breathtaking and inspiring! One of the homes featured in the photos is the Reynolds. As you step inside the 1869 home, located on the famed “Greensboro Road” at No. 404, you begin to take in the history that it holds.

This home was in reality “home sweet home” to many needing a home during hard times. The kindness of the Reynolds family is what people near and far remember about this home and its inhabitants. This gorgeous home has changed little over time. A member of the Reynolds family has continuously occupied the home and meticulously kept it throughout the years. Make your plans now to come to Starkville to enjoy this special event. Starkville Civic League has an outstanding record of excellence in programs and projects. With more than 300 attending this past year, you will want to purchase tickets early. This is sure to be a “Christmas Tour of Homes” to be remembered!

Homes on Tour

Dale Peyton Home, built in 1954 405Broad Street Francis C. Lee Home, built in the 1800s 202 East Gillespie Street Sam Reynolds Home built in 1869 404 Greensboro Street Eddie McNeal Home built in 2007 2627 W. Lakeshore Drive Robert Wilson Home built in 2002 1628Windward Bluff 46

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Pour ti on

A touch of maple syrup in each dish. By Divian Conner

V anilla Poached Pears with Maple-Blueberry Syrup 5 cups water 2 1/2 cups granulated sugar 4 (1-by-3-inch) strips lemon zest 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise and scraped, reserving the seeds and pod 4 Bosc or Anjou pears (about 1 pound)

Combine water, sugar, lemon zest, and vanilla bean seeds and pod in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring until sugar is completely dissolved. Peel the pears, leaving the stem intact. Slice off the bottom 1/8 inch of each pear to create a flat, stable base. Reduce heat to keep poaching liquid at a bare simmer and add the pears, laying them on their sides so they are almost completely submerged. Cook, turning pears occasionally so they become saturated on all sides, until they are just tender when pierced with a fork, about 7 minutes. Allow pears to cool completely in their poaching liquid. Serve immediately, placed upright on the plate, or transfer pears and liquid to an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.

Maple-Blueberry Syrup 1/4 cup brown sugar 1/2 cup real maple syrup 2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries 1 Tbsp. cornstarch 1/2 cup water 1 Tbsp. lemon juice 1/8 tsp. nutmeg

In a saucepan, combine brown sugar and cornstarch. Gradually blend in maple syrup and water. Cook, stirring until thick and bubbly, about 1 minute. Stir in blueberries, lemon juice and nutmeg. Cool slightly.

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Pumpkin Spice Cake Donuts with Maple Glaze 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour 2 tsp. baking powder 1/4 tsp. baking soda 1/2 tsp. salt 1/2 tsp. cinnamon 1/4 tsp. nutmeg 1/8 tsp. ginger 1/8 tsp. cloves 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar 1 egg

1 tsp. vanilla 1/4 cup milk 1/2 cup pumpkin pie puree Canola oil, for frying 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar 1/4 tsp. cinnamon 1/8 tsp. ginger 1 pinch ground cloves 1 pinch ground nutmeg 2 Tbsp. pure maple syrup 1-2 Tbsp. milk

Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices together in a bowl. Mix to combine, and set aside. Melt the butter, then mix in brown sugar. Whisk in the egg until completely smooth, then add vanilla, milk, and pumpkin. Combine dry and wet ingredients, mixing until it comes together. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours. When the dough is ready, heat canola oil (at least 2� deep) in a heavy pot or skillet to 360 F. Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface to 3/4 thickness. Cut into doughnut shapes/holes, and fry a few at a time, cooking for about one minute on each side. Set doughnuts on a paper towel to soak up excess grease. When the doughnuts have cooled slightly, make the glaze by combining the powdered sugar, spices, and maple syrup. Add enough milk to thin the mixture into a glaze. Dip each doughnut in, then set back onto a rack or paper towel.

Try this!

Holiday Mojti o

lime cranberries orange mint leaves 1 1/2 oz. rum 1 oz. orange bitters 1 oz. cranberry juice 1 oz. orange juice 1 oz. Torani peppermint syrup club soda

Muddle cranberries and orange. Stir in rum, orange bitters, cranberry juice, orange juice and Torani peppermint syrup. Add ice and top with club soda and stir. Add mint leaves for garnish.

Acorn Squash with Maple Glaze and Peanuts 2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil 2 Tbsp. light brown sugar 2 Tbsp. real maple syrup 2 small acorn squash (1 lb. each), cut in half, seeds removed Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper Butter, for topping Roasted Peanuts Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Mix the olive oil, brown sugar, and maple syrup together in a small bowl. Put the acorn squash, cut side up, in a single layer on a baking sheet. Brush the glaze on the flesh of the squash and season with salt, and pepper, to taste, sprinkle peanuts. Put the squash in the oven and roast it until tender and golden brown, about 40 to 45 minutes. Remove the squash from the oven and transfer it to a serving dish. Top with butter and serve.

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DIY with Amy Taylor

Fal l TOPIARY If you’re looking for a classic fall showpiece that makes a big statement, this fall topiary does the job! You can make it as small or as large as needed. This piece grew to four feet by the time it was finished. Stems should be cut for smaller topiaries. This piece works beautifully inside, on a porch, or for décor at social events or parties!

Materials: Faux fall leaves, flowers, berries, etc (Shop dollar stores) 2 styrofoam spheres – cut one of them in half (I used an 8” sphere & cut it with a knife.) Wooden dowel or any rod, at the height you want your topiary to be (Even a spray-painted curtain rod or broomstick will do.) Spray paint that blends with the leaves Rocks Heavy-duty, fast-drying glue, if needed (NOT hot glue) Flower pot (I used an old one and spray-painted it (If you want a nicer pot, terracotta works well.) Ribbon, if desired Wire cutters, if you plan to shorten the stems on the faux leaves

Directions:

Pho t og r aph y cour t esy of W CBI’s “Da y in t he Lif e.”

As seen on WCBI Day in the Life with Michelle Lowe

1.After cutting the 8” sphere in half, place it flat-side down inside the pot and spray paint it. 2. Hold the dowel straight and use a hammer/blunt object to GENTLY tap the dowel into the styrofoam sphere. *For extra sturdiness, apply heavy-duty, fast-drying glue into the hole you make with the dowel. Then re-insert the dowel into the hole. Use the same steps to secure the smaller sphere at the top, as shown. Add rocks to the pot for extra stability. 3. Insert faux leaves, flowers, berries, etc. Placing larger flowers in first worked well for me. Distribute them evenly, then fill in with fall leaves, berries and other objects. *Remember to keep this idea in mind for CHRISTMAS, using poinsettias instead of fall leaves! Use caution when placing this piece outside; bring it indoors during extreme weather.

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From Thursday to Saturday

& Back

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he Egg Bowl was nationally televised on Thanksgiving Night by ESPN from 1998-2003, which made scores of Mississippi football fans who couldn’t get to Starkville or Oxford very happy after a day of family, friends, and a spectacular holiday meal. In recent years the highly-anticipated rivalry game has been a Saturday affair, but ESPN announced back in April that it would indeed air this year’s game on Thanksgiving at 6:30 p.m. Though the network will not commit to further yearly coverage, there’s plenty of 52

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By Joe Lee l Pho t og r aph y b y MSU Media R elations and Cat her ine S tuk enbor g

excitement around Starkville and MSU about the event again being on national TV this year. “The SEC office got in touch with us and Ole Miss and let us know that ESPN had an interest in televising the Egg Bowl Thanksgiving Night and asked if we had a similar interest, and we did,” said MSU athletic director Scott Stricklin. “Any time both teams are winning, it becomes a much more attractive game for the national stage. Here are two programs on the upswing, having gone to bowl games last

year. It’s great exposure for us and for them.” It’s one thing to see the date on your pocket or desk schedule all fall. It’s another to start planning your holiday – and Thanksgiving Dinner itself – around the game. MSU head football coach, Dan Mullen, said that pre-game preparations will be just like that of a typical Saturday game, however. And the menu, because it’s designed to give the players the proper nutrition they’ll need to perform on the field that night, will not be adjusted.


Uniform Rundown The “Egg Bowl” Adidas TECHFIT uniform celebrates the tradition of the Bulldogs’ interstate rivalry and is maroon with gold metallic Scan to VIEW numbers and trim. The Bulldogs will wear maroon and metallic gold Crazyquick cleats with “HAILSTATE” on the heel. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6_DGPJfAJJI

“You are looking at about 175 individuals, not including stadium workers, who will be involved with the game from the football team’s aspect,” Mullen said. “As far as a disruption to Thanksgiving plans, this is probably even better (to play) on Thursday than on Saturday. “Yes, you do miss the actual Thanksgiving Day, but every year we practice Thanksgiving morning, so many of these students don’t get a traditional Thanksgiving. By playing on Thursday night, most will at least get a Thanksgiving weekend home with their families that they wouldn’t by having a game that weekend.” Madison resident and MSU grad Mark Doiron is part of a group of 50 or more Bulldog (and Rebel) fans from all over central Mississippi who will tailgate together before the game. “We’ll drive up Thursday morning and probably get there around ten,” Doiron said. “We’re bringing two fryers and will have a regular Thanksgiving Day feast: turkey, dressing, cranberry sauce, and everything else. Everything will be the same as our usual Thanksgiving meal – including the blessing – except it will be under a tent. There will be lots of kids. It’s a real family atmosphere. “We’ll drive back after the game and spend the night at our deer camp – between Jackson and Starkville – but a lot of the group will stay over.”

Last 5 Years 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008

Dawgs 24 31 31 41 0

Black Bears 41 3 23 27 45

These Tailgate Essientials can be found at

Giggleswick Purple Elephant Thyme

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Julie Harris and her husband, Glenn, live in Simpson County but have MSU season tickets this year and make the three-hour drive each weekend the Dawgs are at home. “With the game being on Thanksgiving Day, we will probably not tailgate any,” Harris said. “We will have a small Thanksgiving meal around midday and head out around 2:30 p.m. We will just go for the game and return since – as of right now – I am working on Friday. If the game was on Saturday, we would have either planned more tailgating or to eat locally at a favorite restaurant.” Though most Starkville-area businesses will be closed on Thanksgiving Day, Jennifer Gregory of the Greater Starkville Development Partnership said there will be a Friday morning shopping event called Black Friday Bonanza to encourage all visitors (and Starkville residents) to stay in town to shop for Christmas. Additionally, the popular Bulldog Brunch and Browse is set for Sunday with businesses such as The Loft, Mary Virginia’s, Stinky Feet Athletics, The Book Mart &

Café, Reed’s, Occasions, Aspen Bay, Denim & Lace and others open from noon until 3 p.m. As to Thanksgiving Day on the MSU campus, it sure won’t be a ghost town. Tailgaters will be everywhere, and Barnes & Noble (in the Cullis Wade Depot) will be open with regular game-day hours and MSU memorabilia and apparel in all shapes and sizes. The MAFES sales store will open at 9 a.m., giving fans an opportunity to pick up an Edam cheese ball or gift pack. Deep South Pout, the boutique on University Drive, will have a tent at the MSU Fan Fair on game day beginning at noon. They will hand out gift cards, fry some turkeys, give out free bottles of water, and have a giveaway called “The Junction Jackpot.” “Thanksgiving Day will have a different vibe this year with folks in town for the game, whether they drive up for the game and back, or whether they spend the night,” Stricklin said. “There will be a lot of tailgating at The Junction. I think it will be a lot of fun: Thanksgiving Dinner with families, then heading to the game.”

B.L.T. Dip by Divian Conner for livinglocurto.com

2 packages 8 oz. cream cheese 1 packet dry Ranch dressing mix 1/2 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese (or shredded fiesta cheese) 1/2 cup of sun dried tomatoes diced (not in oil, if in water, drain) 1/2 cup of chopped cooked bacon Croutons Lettuce 2 Tbsp. of sour cream In a mixing bowl, combine everything except lettuce and croutons. Mix well and spread into your baking dish/dip bowl (oven safe serving dish). Top with croutons and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Once out of the oven, surround the dip with lettuce slices. *adjust the recipe to fit your crowd. Double or triple it depending on the number of people being served. 54

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Student Twitter Q&A What is your favorite tradition for Thanksgiving? @amweaver11; Johns Creek, Ga. My favorite Thanksgiving tradition is playing football every year with my family.

@Lisahankes; Memphis, Tenn. Every year my family has a “Panini Cook-off” the day after Thanksgiving from all of the leftovers. We are obsessed with the show Iron Chef.

@stevebs11; Natchez, Miss. My favorite part of Thanksgiving is going to my grandparents’ house to eat and watch football all day.

@clay_hicks; Valrico, Fla. Since I am a student from out of state, I enjoy seeing and being with my family on Thanksgiving.

@linsjaggers; Okolona, Miss. My favorite Thanksgiving tradition is having all of the family together to eat and hang out.


Musically Noted By Joe Lee l Pho t og r aph y b y Laur a Daniels

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thletes speak of being in the zone after performing at the very top of their game. The many talented musicians who make up the Starkville/MSU symphony orchestra, celebrating their forty-fifth season, feel the same rush, and the magical moments are just as enjoyable even after decades of playing. “Several years ago we played Mussorgsky’s ‘Pictures at an Exhibition,’” said Elizabeth Hawkins, an integral part of the Starkville orchestra since the 1972-1973 season. “I was the principal horn player, and at the end of the ‘Catacombs’ and ‘With the Dead’ movement we in the horn section looked at each other and knew we’d done it. The sound of the horns was what we were trying to get.” Hawkins, who plays piano and French horn, remembers when the group was so small it practiced in a living room. “Robert Phillips brought me in, and we were the only two brass players – up until then it was a string group. Rehearsals started in the home of the one of the members. Back then it was the Starkville Community Orchestra. We eventually moved to the Episcopal church and grew as we were able to add people.” Dolton McAlpin played in the Jackson Symphony Orchestra before bringing his considerable talents to Starkville in time for the 1974-1975 season. He is the president of the

Starkville/MSU Symphony Association (SMSA) and sings in the community chorus. “I played cello continuously until the conclusion of the 2012-2013 season,” McAlpin said. “When I started, the orchestra had about 40 players. One time I was playing on the first stand of cellos, closest to the conductor. During the concert we came to what had been at rehearsal a troublesome passage in the piece, and we negotiated it perfectly. We all breathed a collective sigh of relief, but Michael Brown’s expression was one of pure bliss.” Dr. Michael Brown began playing the trumpet at a young age and taught music right out of high school. In addition to conducting the Starkville symphony, he heads up the MSU Department of Music, a position he has held since 2000. He and his colleagues are always on the lookout for new and talented members, as well as additional means of financial support. “The Gala is more of a dinner and dance, and it’s the only fundraiser we do,” Brown said of an event set for Feb.15 at the Starkville Shrine Club. “We make between $5,000 and $10,000, but our budget is $120,000. We get support from the Mississippi Arts Council, the Starkville Arts Council, the Greater Starkville Development Partnership, MSU (Dr. Mark Keenum is a big supporter), and businesses like Renasant Bank as well as any grant sponsorships we can get. And for november

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years we’ve gotten a lot of personal donations.” At the young age of 84, Trudy Gildea of Columbus, Miss. is among many members who praise Brown as an organizer. Gildea and her family moved from New York to Columbus in 1962. An accomplished violinist, she joined the Starkville Community Orchestra in its first year of existence and started a Suzuki-inspired string program in Columbus in 1980 that continues to draw young children (and their parents) from all over the Golden Triangle. “Music is an expensive thing to have,” said Gildea, who still plays with the Starkville orchestra (as does her daughter, Patti). “You can teach in groups, but you eventually need one-on-one instruction. I attended a wonderful high school with an outstanding music program. Looking back, starting the Suzuki program here is one of the things I’m most proud of.” Joe Ray Underwood is in charge of programs for children and, not surprisingly, brings decades of musical training and a love of the genre to what he does. “Michael and I consult in January and try to identify something that would be educational, fun, and meaningful for children,” Underwood said. “We have performed ‘Peter and the Wolf,’ ‘Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra,’ and ‘Tubby the Tuba.’ This year, Michael’s wife, Karen, helped us create lesson plans about writing poetry, and we are having a poetry contest to get the kids excited about the program. Our theme is ‘Mississippi Musical Milestones.’ We are honoring Elvis Presley, Jimmie Rodgers, and Leontyne Price.” The SMSA Community Chorus is headed up by Dr. Doug Browning of Columbus, who is in his second year as director. “I was keenly interested in the Chorus because of their rich tradition of excellence and an opportunity to performance 56

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2013-14 Concert Schedule Nov. 1

Mississippi Musical Milestones The Symphony Orchestra First Baptist Church, Starkville, Miss.

Nov. 10 Light and Lively The Symphony Chorus First United Methodist Church Dec. 3

The Criss Concert The Symphony Orchestra First Baptist Church

Feb. 8

Hayden Highlight The Symphony Orchestra First Baptist Church

Mar. 1

German Greatness The Symphony Orchestra First Baptist Church

Apr. 6

What’s Baroque...Doesn’t Need Fixing The Symphony Chorus First United Methodist Church


choral works with orchestra,” Browning said. “I am responsible for selecting repertoire, securing concert venues, and conducting rehearsals and concerts. “I have truly enjoyed working with the symphony chorus. They are a hard-working, fun group that loves to prepare and perform. Their persistence and energy is one of their endearing attributes.” Those concerts, whether conducted by Brown or Browning, are free. It’s one more way the SMSA reaches out to the community and prepares the next generation for a love of music that will last a lifetime. “Many high schools do not have orchestras, and we want to sponsor as many string players as we can,” Brown said. “Dr. Richard Human is the conductor of the MSU Philharmonia. We worked out a system that the best players in the Philharmonia get to play in the Starkville symphony. MSU has always been a great band school, but we have a growing student orchestra, and that came from the scholarship program with the symphony. It helps attract very bright kids to MSU.” “We want to perform good music well, and a lot of it is serious, but we have a lot of fun with it,” Hawkins said. “We perform jazz and bigband. Our chorus is doing some fun music with challenging arrangements. All of that can be classic in its own way. ‘If it ain’t Baroque, don’t fix it’ – a spring performance – shows you the variety and fun we have with our music.” Visit www.starkvillemsusymphony.org for 2013-2014 season events, sponsorship opportunities, and more information about children’s programming.

Q&A with Dr. Michael Brown Head of the Department of Music at MSU Town & Gown: What brought you to the MSU Music Department and, eventually, the position of Conductor of the Starkville/MSU Symphony Association? Dr. Brown: I came when they needed a new department head in 2000. Dr. Charles Lee was the MSU president then, and he was told that not enough music faculty members were involved in the local symphony. I got involved, and once our faculty understood the process and realized we would all be treated professionally, they were on board. It went from being a community orchestra to a professional orchestra. This is my twelfth season, and it has been very pleasant.

John or Beethoven. Many students say (about the course), “I thought I’d hate it, but I didn’t.” When the students see the old teacher up there waving his arms, that gets them a little interested, too. Many come back to concert after concert after they leave the class, and that feels good. I’ve introduced them to something I feel is important.

Town & Gown: When you get ready to conduct the

love of music, and what instruments do you enjoy playing the most? Dr. Brown: The trumpet is the only instrument I play. I was hooked when I heard “Reveille” at church camp. The trumpet got me to college, and it has been my ticket to ride.

orchestra, tell me about the rush that comes from preparing to set the bar just a little higher each time for a group of talented, veteran Starkville symphony members? Dr. Brown: It is a rush, and it’s quite wonderful. It’s wonderful in the rehearsals, with 60-70 talented musicians in front of you, and you’re leading them. Sometimes in the concerts – and in the rehearsals – there’s that magic moment when everyone is together, when you get to the next level and the music is carrying you along. You think about that moment. You know you don’t have many of those in life.

Town & Gown: How do you go about reaching young

Town & Gown: What needs to happen for the SMSA to

Town & Gown: How far back in life did you cultivate a

people – college students in particular – in an intro level Music Appreciation course that have little to no exposure to Bach, Mozart, and Tchaikovsky, and getting their minds (as well as their ears) around the works of the masters? Dr. Brown: It is a challenge. I only teach one course at MSU, and it’s Music Appreciation – to a class of 330 students. I require them to come to one symphony concert a semester because live music is always best, whether it’s Elton

thrive a generation from now as it does today?

Dr. Brown: We’re the only orchestra in the state that gives free concerts. We’re not rich, but we pay our bills and pay our players and end up every year in the black. The combination of both the university and a town that loves the arts – as well as a lot of faculty who love the music – all of it has to come together (regarding the future). I hope it continues to work.

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DIY with Amy Taylor

Initial DOOR Hanger It’s FALL, Y’all! Go all-out with this door hanger. It’s easy, affordable and suitable for any home, apartment, condo, office or even dorm room!

Materials: Wooden or cardboard letter Fall faux leaves (Shop dollar store) Stapler or staple gun (Be careful using a staple gun. It might damage the letter.) Method of your choice for hanging – ribbon, twine, etc.

Directions: 1. Remove faux leaves from stems and staple to the letter. 2. Add ribbon, rope or twine for hanging, and you’re finished!

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Sam D. Hamilton Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge 2013 Photo Winners

Above: (Adult Wildlife) First Place- Ramdeo Seepaul, Allium Forager; Second Place- Susan Hamilton, Watch for Curves; Third Place- Kathy Seawright, Woolly Worm. Middle: (Adult Scenery) First Place- Ramdeo Seepaul, Peaceful Beckoning; Second Place- Kathy Seawright, Lotus Center Piece; Third Place- Lisa Wiggins, Sungazers. Bottom: (Youth Wildlife) First Place- Kylee McMullen, Summer Netar with Aluring Charm; Second Pace- Parker McMullen, Pine Tree in Motion; Third Place- Noah McMullen, Old Knotty Tree.


BRAWLING FOR THEIR COMMUNITY

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Oxford Circus hand-crochet sweater, $48.95; Fashiononmics tribal-print strapless dress, $36.95. Deep South Pout

Sadie Word #21

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S ty led b y N at alie Phillips l Pho t og r aph y b y Ashle y he ladies of the Mississippi Brawl Stars from Columbus, Miss. will tell you that roller derby is probably not the roller derby you’ve seen on television, especially circa the 1970s. No, faked wrestling, choreographed tackles and on-purpose injuries aren’t present in their arena. These women are athletes – they practice and have games, or bouts, as a team. They wear uniforms consisting of shorts or skirts and fishnet tights (which aren’t always popular with the younger fans) but serve an athletic purpose, much like shin guards do for a soccer player. Oh, and they wear kneepads, elbow pads, and helmets, too. The Brawl Stars will tell you that roller derby is their “therapy on wheels,” something that has helped them overcome many personal issues, build each other up by working as a team, and get through the harmful (and happy) parts of life. Each of them comes from a different corner of the Golden Triangle, and the team has an interestingly wide variety of ages and personalities. They are impressive advocates for the power of women, who have the ability to be beautiful, athletic, intelligent, strong and fierce. One of their goals is to successfully work as a nonprofit organization, offering charitable help to the community

T.K. MARTIN CENTER & SALLY K. WINTERS A former member of the Mississippi Brawl Stars is a teacher at the T.K. Martin Center, which hosts an annual fun run – that’s why this cause is one that touches the Brawl Stars so personally. The track is one-mile long and features many cool and wacky stations as pit stops along the way. If one mile isn’t enough of a good time for the participant, he or she can repeat their laps. The Sally K. Winters Fun Run supports the prevention of child abuse in Mississippi. The Derby girls set up a tent for the event and cheered on the run by providing a cheer station for the participants. Perhaps some of the participants weren’t in the best shape and needed a confidence and endurance boost? The Brawl Stars were there. Of course, even the best runners could use a little encouragement, and they were there to support them too.

Co vin l Clo t hes Pr o vided b y Deep Sout h P out through hard work, time and donations. The Mississippi Brawl Stars have dipped their skates in over ten causes, most of them championed by a member or members of the team. However, fans or individuals in the community also bring charity opportunities to them when they feel that a cause may need their support. The derby team is also a source of giving and assistance in itself. They recently raised money for an injured skater, who broke bother her tibia and fibula, in order to help her with the payment of surgery and the cost of casts. They raised almost a thousand dollars in 48 hours. Though the team does not have the opportunity to help out with other causes as much as they would like due to conflicting schedules, they are connected to each cause they assist on a personal level. They are also willing to participate in pretty much any team appearances and promotional events that are brought to their attention by those on the team, their friends or their fans. While the Mississippi Brawl Stars are primarily focused this year on helping out Palmer Home, the team previously had a themed bout for each cause they championed.

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Full Metal Fiona #M16

RELAY FOR LIFE

MyStory black dress, $36.95; Issue star button-up cardigan, $44.95; DSP necklace, $16.95. Deep South Pout 62

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Relay for Life, the signature fundraiser for the American Cancer Society, is a cause that has affected the Brawl Stars in an intimate way. Everyone on the team has someone or has known someone that has been touched by cancer. The event, an overnight community walk, attracts teams of supporters from all over the country. After the Survivors Lap – which gives individuals a chance to celebrate their victory over cancer – kicks off the event, members of each team take turns walking around the track. The relay, which can be both sweet and heartbreaking at the same time, raises a lot of money for the ACS and increases cancer awareness. The Brawl Stars assist with Relay for Life on a volunteer basis, helping with the event setup and dealing with the canned goods drive.


Palmer Home

Due to their long history with the cause, the Mississippi Brawl Stars consider the Palmer Home for Children their number one charity. Palmer Home is a Christian organization in Mississippi that provides free residential care for children (from birth to college age) who have no one or need someone to provide for them. Its two campuses in both Columbus and Hernando consist of several cottages on their properties, separate for boys and girls, and each with a different name. The team sponsors one of these cottages. The home’s Christmas Open House offers an opportunity for the team to spend time with the kids; it gives them a chance to see how they’ve grown, what they’ve accomplished, and even take a peek at what they’ve done to their bedrooms in the cottage. Despite this big sponsorship, perhaps the biggest contribution to the home comes from their bouts. The kids and those involved are provided with open invitations to the matches and are invited to sit in the VIP section that is always reserved for them. Also, 20 percent of all proceeds from their bouts go to Palmer, and they also kindly give monthly donations. Though the Palmer Home and the Brawl Stars often have incompatible schedules, they are still deeply connected on a personal level. The team does not spend as much time with the kids as they would like, but one thing was clear – it is not just a check in the mail.

Snarly Quinn #5

Very J highwaist vinyl shorts, $32.95; Ovi suede mustard-yellow top, $29.95; DSP necklace, $28.95. Deep South Pout

@msbrawlstars

@mississippibrawlstars

mississippibrawlstars.com Email:info@mississippibrawlstars.com november

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Sasha Slashappy #66

LOCAL POLICE & FIRE DEPARTMENTS

Yoyo faux wrap leopard print dress, $38.98; Umgee floral print button-up, $29.95. Deep South Pout

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The team assisted with a Bike Drive for the Columbus Police Department, as well as helping them with a Turkey Drive and Thanksgiving Meal Delivery during the holiday season. Not only that – when it comes to the fire departments in Columbus, Starkville and Eupora, the Brawl Stars simply raised money through their bouts that helped them provide donations to the different departments. One fire department appreciated the support so much that they sent a fire truck, unused for the day, to one of the bouts. The team gathered around the vehicular support and remembers this act of kindness fondly.


Shanaconda #22

SAFE HAVEN Safe Haven, a women’s domestic violence shelter in Columbus, Miss. is another charity that is extremely near and dear to the hearts of the Mississippi Brawl Stars. The shelter was a “natural fit” because of the team’s strong efforts advocating women’s empowerment. Many of the women that are victims of domestic violence and assaults are not fond of public places or events, but received an invitation to a bout held in their honor regardless. Their identities could not be revealed to the derby team, but the team would like to think that some of them showed up to the bout that was themed for them. The Brawl Stars wish to do more with Safe Haven in the future, and they truly hope that one day the ladies of the shelter will come out and skate with them.

Millibon sleeveless v-cut jumpsuit, $38.95; Millibon gold dot bomber jacket, $19.95. Deep South Pout

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Photography by Catherine Stukenborg

1. Old West tall boots, $136. L.A. Green Boutique; 662-324-6280. 2. Pine Cone Hill shams, $72. Simply Home; 662-323-4323. 3. Vivace jewelry $12-22. The Style Loft on Main; 662-324-5004. 4. Stephen Joseph quilted purse, $14.99. University Screenprint; 662-324-8277. 5. Vintage t-shirt, $20. The Veranda, 662-323-1231. 6. Ala Carte Alice Shrimp Bisque and Chipotle Jalapeno Glaze, $9-11. Giggleswick; 662-323-4438. 7. Cad-cam custom designed ring. The Jewel Shoppe; 662-773-3320.

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A CUP OF LINSAY JO Pho t og r aph y Submitt ed

Lindsay is an online lifestyle blogger. Her blog, www.acupoflindsayjo. com, has a primary focus on fashion. Lindsay is a member of the Independent Fashion Bloggers (IFB) and attends various conferences and workshops with other fashion bloggers regularly.

Shop the Palette

Earth tones

Cabin Fever

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Try these looks L.A. Green Boutique Giggleswick

For more inspiration, fashion, food cusine and interior spaces go to acupoflindsayjo.com and follow her on Instagram @acupoflinsayjo.


Rustic Cute and Comfortable november

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HEALTH AND BEAUTY

Beauty Fix Christine Tibbett, Starkville resident, is an MSU graduate with a Bachelors degree in Apparel, Textiles, and Merchandising. She studied makeup artistry at the Atlanta Makeup Academy, and she is a licensed Esthetician (skin care specialist). Tibbett also owns Christine’s Couture, and in her spare time, she loves spending time outdoors, exercising, and has a passion for helping others look and feel their best.

I

t's my favorite time of year – Fall! Rich color palettes, changing leaves, and decadent Thanksgiving recipes are trending, so my mind wanders to all things jewel toned and delicious. Here are your November beauty must haves:

Get Your Fix...

1. Maybelline Shine Sensational Lip Gloss, Cranberry Crave, $6 Drugstores. 2. Not Like The Movies and Jade is the New Black. OPI nail polishes, $9 Merle Norman and Luna Bella. 3. Iman Luxury Liquid Eyeliner in Copper, $11 Wal-Mart. 4. Make Up For Ever Smoky Lash in green, $23 Sephora.com. 5. Metallic Chelsea Hair Tie Set, $8 L.A. Green. 6. Kate Somerville Pumpkin Infused Body Intensive Exfoliating Treatment, $65 Department Stores. 7. Philosophy Orange Cranberry Spritzer Duo, $26 Sephora.com. 8. Thierry Mugler Alien Perfume, $119 Ulta.

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Do It Yourself Pumpkin Face Mask

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(works on all skin types) 1/3 cup ground almonds 2 cups pumpkin puree 4 Tbsp. Honey 1/4 tsp. olive oil Mix and apply to clean face Let it do its magic for 5-10 minutes then rinse! Will keep for three weeks in an air tight container.

Rich Palettes! 7. 8.

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Kick Back with Laurie Parker By Hellen Polk Photography by Laura Daniels

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r e n e d r a G & t s i t r A , r o h t u A . l l a t i s e – She do

What art medium do you most prefer?

What grammar faux pas makes you really cringe? Laurie: Dangling participles where the word or participial phrase modifies the wrong noun. Another is the incorrect use of pronouns as in “a gift for Bob and I”  – it is when people think they are being correct by using "I"– and "me" would actually be right – that drives me crazy!  

What is your favorite thing about living in Starkville? Laurie: My family is here in town – my mom, two sisters and a brother.

What are your three most favorite books that you have written and illustrated?

Laurie: That’s very tough, but I’d have to say Everywhere in Mississippi because it was my first book, The Turtle Saver for its story, and A for Angels for the illustrations.

What are some of your favorite books by other authors?

Laurie: The Collector, John Fowles Walking on Water, by Madeline L’Engle Letters to a Young Poet, by Rainer Maria Rilke Falling Through Space, by another Mississippian, Ellen Gilchrist One Writer’s Beginnings, by Mississippi writer Eudora Welty and anything by Sam Keen

How would you describe the “perfect” day? Laurie: It would involve a ride out in the country to a combination fish fry and picnic supper on an afternoon in May or early June…there would be a porch with rocking chairs, a rain shower with thunder, and music from the ‘70s music playing maybe “America’s Greatest Hits” so I’d hear “Sister Golden Hair.”

Where are your favorite “junking” spots?

Laurie: There’s a great junk shop on Highway 32 in Bruce. Of course, some of my best things have been found along the side of the road!

Laurie: paper collage

Where do you find papers and pictures for your collages? Laurie: It's all from magazines. Decorating magazines usually have the best colors in the backgrounds of ads. When I cut the shapes, I look for colors that add texture to an object.  

You were "Miss Starkville High School" and valedictorian of your senior class. What role did your local education play in your successful career?

Laurie: I had top-notch, “old school” English teachers that taught me grammar and sentence structure – as well as an appreciation for literature: Jimmie Allen, Francis McCarty, the late Betsy Didlake, and Billie Lane Hood. And even though I never had Ann Bonner – I felt she was my "teacher," too – because she oversaw student government, in which I was active. They don’t make them like that anymore! And I also had a TOUGH English Comp professor at MSU – Brenda Sartoris. I learned so much from all of them, and I have used it in all of my writing! Although I sadly didn't take art in high school, I was fortunate to have had the incredible Jane Gair as an art teacher both in elementary school and in ninth grade. And truthfully, ALL of my teachers encouraged me in my creative pursuits; I was always doing poetry and/or artsy things in school. I was very touched when some years ago, for the dedication of "Lake Lusk" at Starkville High School, long-time biology teacher Jane Lusk specifically requested that as part of the ceremony, I be there to read a poem I wrote for her when I was in tenth grade. She'd kept it all those years!   

What advice do you offer those who may want to step out and pursue a dream as you did? Laurie: When you have something that you love doing, you do it well, and it feels more like joy than work, it just might be your calling. The expression,

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“leap and the net will appear” has been one motto in my pursuing art and writing as a livelihood. Do what makes your heart sing, have faith that you are supported by a Higher Power, and things will work out for you.

A Book Review

The Matchstick Cross

Gardening is one of your hobbies. Please share some of your gardening tips. Laurie: I love to use gardening as an extension of my art – the design, layout, and garden art that I use in my garden. I enjoy planting from seeds and using plants that are re-seeding. I also take a lot of propagations. Many of the plants that are easy to propagate require only that you take a cutting, scratch the outer surface, put it in the ground and keep it watered. I’ve also had good success with cuttings placed in terrariums in the sunroom.

Why did you decide to write a 507-page novel for adults after writing and illustrating 13 children’s books? Laurie: I've always loved to write, was approaching fifty, and was ready for a change from the children's books. Doing a novel was an outlet for my love of words and language, and a way for me to "fight back" against the insidious dumbing-down of society that I feel is being caused in part by cell phone addiction, Facebook, Twitter and The "Learning" Channel airing shows like "Here Comes Honey Boo Boo." While there still remains a generation of people left alive who can read a book, I decided I'd better get to it! And having never considered doing a novel before now, I also just wanted to prove to myself that I could do it!

Most folks know you as an artist and writer, but your degree was in Elementary Education. You also have a number of hours in engineering coursework. Tell a little about those experiences. Laurie: I loved the academic part of both education and engineering, but I don’t like managing other people. These two fields require a great deal of work with individuals and groups. I realized that I work better on my own, so I chose to support myself as an artist and writer. I had to go down some wrong roads vocation-wise to finally figure out the road I was meant to take. Creating has always been my main love in life, and it is what I was meant to do.

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hat do you get when you combine the writing skills of an accomplished children’s book author with a story of a young girl growing up in Mississippi during the sixties and seventies? A fascinating, humorous read filled with nostalgic memories of one’s own childhood experiences in the South. The Matchstick Cross is Laurie Parker’s first adult novel. She hand-wrote the entire manuscript earlier this year to the surprise and delight of many fans and friends. But, don’t expect this book to be a grown-up version of a children’s book. The main character is Celia Friday, a successful interior designer living in New York City, who takes a journey back to Mississippi to clean out a storage unit of boxes that had belonged to her late mother. Accompanying Celia on this trip is her design partner and best friend, Huey LaFleur, a gay man who grew up in New York.

Laurie Parker further demonstrates her talent as a wordsmith in this well-written 507-page novel chock-full of flashbacks to Celia’s childhood that will have readers laughing, crying, and reminiscing along with Celia and Huey on their journey. Over the years, Celia has suffered a great deal of bullying and “mean girl” behavior as well as snide comments from northerners who don’t have a clue about life in Mississippi. All these events come together as she endeavors to give Huey a real taste of southern life during their two-week trip to her hometown. Huey has agreed to help Celia go through all the boxes left in the attic after her mother’s death. Anyone who has experienced this type of activity knows that all kinds of memories, both good and bad, are unearthed as the contents of each box are revealed. As Celia remembers her childhood events, she strives to deal with each one as well as to give her best friend a Mississippi experience that he’ll never forget. Along the way many readers will identify with Celia’s southernisms, her experiences at church camp and Vacation Bible School, and her descriptive tales of junior high and high school encounters that helped to shape her life. They will appreciate much of the great Mississippi life as Huey does while they take day trips to interesting Mississippi towns. Readers might even resolve some of their own past histories as Celia seeks validation and peace with the secrets of her former life.


MSU Giles Library Dedication The MSU School of Architecture held a reception for the dedication of the Giles Architecture Building Library to Bob and Kathy Luke on Monday, October 7, 2013. Photography by Laura Daniels

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1.Jim West, Kathy and Bob Luke and Jerry Gilbert 2. Julia Porter and Christie McNeal 3. Jenny Wilkinson and Emily Mcglohn 4. Peggy West, Jamie Mixon and Beth Miller 5. Nathan Boggen, Wayne Timmer and David Burt 6. Rachel McCamn and Kimberly Brown

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Power Breakfast The Blue Ribbon Business Resources held a Power Breakfast for a Panel Discussion: School Consolidation on Wednesday, October 2, 2013 at the Hilton Garden Inn. Special guest included Michelle Jones, Jeremiah Dumas and Rex Buffington . Photography by Laura Daniels

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1. Bo Bell, Richard Linley and Terry long 2. Jennifer Prather and Robyn Harvard 3. Chris Taylor and Shlynn Morris 4. Steve Langston and Adrian Marcus 5. Keith Coble and Rex Buffingtonr 6. Parker Wiseman and Heath Barret

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Jazz at Renasant The MSU/Starkville Symphony held Jazz at Renasant on Tuesday, October 8, 2013 at the Plaza at the Renasant Bank. Attendees danced and listened to the Swing Band play at dusk. Photography by Ashley Covin

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1. Molly Dallas and Tori Wilson 2. Emma Katherine Hutto and Lincoln Fairley 3. Diane and Wayne Evrard 4. Yo Wooten and Jeff Overstreet 5. Melita and Tommy Tomlinson 6. Mareth Saville, Kylah Thomas, Brit Kumble, Trae Lowery and Joe Ray Underwood

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The History & Traditions of SEC Football A fundraiser for MSU Wesley Foundation, The History & Traditions of SEC Football, was held on Saturday, September 25, 2013 at First United Methodist Church. Event featured SEC Historian, Dr. Mark Windham. Photography by Ashley Covin

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1. Anne and Ben Sanford 2. Betsy Sue and Bob Wilson, Nancy and Charlie Wax 3. Dale and Les Phillips 4. Evelyn and Bill Simmons 5. Hart and Carolyn Bailey 6. Keaton and Hunter Upton

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T.K. Martin Fun Run T.K Martin Center had their annual Fun Run on Saturday, September 28, 2013 on Mississippi State University’s campus. The event was sponsored by Cadence Bank and all proceeds went to the T.K. Martin Center for Technology and Disability. Photography by Ashley Covin

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1. Brittney Brock and Anna Chaney 2. Brittney Howard and Melanie Owens 3. Sally Passons and Shelby Pellum 4. Audrey Hutchinson and Matt Hutchinson 5. Jack Aarhus 6. Johnna Ladd and Shelby Holm

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CALENDAR Oct. 31 - Nov. 3,5,9 “A Catered Affair”

Starkville Community Theatre presents “A Catered Affair” a musical by Harvey Fierstein, music and lyrics by John Bucchino and directed by Pattye Archer. A Catered Affair tells the story of a Bronx mother’s efforts to give her only daughter the elaborate wedding she never had. For more information visit sct-online.org.

November 1

Mississippi Musical Milestones The Starkville MSU Symphony Association presents Mississippi Musical Milestones at First Baptist Church Starkville starting at 7:30 p.m. For more information visit starkvillemsusymphony.org.

Design Class Pail of Paint will be hosting a Fall Platter design class at 6 p.m.The cost is only $10 plus your pottery piece cost. Registration is required, so contact Pail of Paint to make sure you get registered on time. Pail of Paint is located on 500 Russell Street suite 25, Starkville, Miss. 662-324-6000.

November 2

Project Learning Tree The Mississippi Modern Homestead Center will host Project Learning Tree from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. PLT is unbiased, fun and hands-on and designed to use the forest as a “window on the world” to help students explore the environment and to make informed decisions about complicated environmental issues.To register visit msmodernhomestead.com.

Designers’ Gallery Open House Visit Designers’ Gallery for their Christmas Open House from 5-8 p.m. Tree lighting starts at 5:15 p.m. and refreshments will be served. For more information call 662-324-3224.

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“South in Your Mouth Harvest Cook-off” Come experience the harvest cook-off and festival from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. in Louisville, Miss.There will be a Veteran’s Day Parade, great food, and great shopping.

November 5 America’s Music

The MSU Library will host America’s Music: A Film History of Our Popular Music from Blues to Bluegrass to Broadway from 7-9 p.m. on November 5 and 12, 2013 at the MSU Library Auditorium featuring documentary film screenings and scholar-led discussions of 20th century American popular music. For more information visit library. msstate.edu/americasmusic.

Lyceum Series The Mississippi State University Lyceum Series presents the Portland Cello Project, wowing audiences all over the country with their extravagant performances where you would not normally “go after dark.” Join them in a concert starting at 7:30 p.m. at Bettersworth Auditorium in Lee Hall. For more information visit lyceum.msstate.edu.

November 6

Blue Ribbon Business Resources Series The Blue Ribbon Business Resources Series “Know Your Chamber Benefits: Partnership Membership 101” is sponsored by Hilton Garden Inn Starkville and held there from 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. For more information visit starkville.org.

November 8

Ghosts and Legends The Columbus Arts Council Omnova Series: Coming to America will present Ghosts and Legends starting on Friday and Saturday, November 8-9. Bus Tours will be leaving Tennessee Williams home. For bus tour times and more information visit columbus-arts.org.

Grill Live The Jackson Square Grill in Columbus, Miss. will be hosting Grill Live featuring Jeffrey Rupp and Drew Dieckman, so come on out between 7 and 11 p.m.

November 9

Starkville Area Arts Council Gala The Starkville Area Arts Council will host their Gala at the Hunter Henry Center from 6-8 p.m. For more information visit starkvillearts.org.

Owens Brothers Band Join the Owens Brothers Band in concert at 7:30 p.m. and not only enjoy a night of music, come early around 3:30 p.m. to participate in the Country Music Karaoke Contest. All located at the Choctaw Community Center in Ackerman, Miss. For more information call 662-285-6424.

Holiday Open House The Louisville Annual “Jingle Bell Jubille Holiday Open House” will be open on the 9th from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and again on the 10th from 1-4 p.m.

Grill Live The Jackson Square Grill in Columbus, Miss. will be hosting Grill Live featuring Stephanie Jackson, so come on out between 7 and 11pm.

November 10 Light and Lively

The Starkville MSU Symphony Chorus presents Light and Lively from 3-5 p.m. at First United Methodist Church in Starkville. For more information visit starkvillemsusymphony.org.

November 11

Starkville MSU Symphony The Starkville MSU Symphony will present “Songs of the West and South” at First United Methodist Church in Starkville, Miss. starting at 3:30 p.m. For more information visit starkvillemsusymphony.org.

November 12

“Investing for Growth & Protection” seminar Presented by Franklin Templeton Investments, Fred Miller, feature speaker, will discuss a number of informative topics starting at 6 p.m. at the Rosenzqeig Arts Center. Dinner will be served and seating is limited.To confirm a reservation, please call or email Maranda Malone at 662-329-0071 or maranda.malone@ edwardjones.com by Nov. 7, 2013.

Radio Show with Scott Stricklin The Central Station Grill will be hosting a Hail State Live Radio Show with Scott Stricklin from 7-8 p.m.There will be open seating in the bar area so come on out!

November 14 Starkville Young Professionals

Join the Starkville Young Professionals at 5:30 p.m. for their monthly social at 929 Coffee Bar. For more information visit Starkville Young Professionals Facebook page.

Chick-fil-A Mini Moo Time From 9-10 a.m. Chick-fil-A will host their Mini Moo time for ages 6 and under at the Starkville location every Thursday of November. Kids will enjoy story time, crafts, games and the Chickfil-A Cow.

BFA Thesis Show The Bachelor of Fine Arts students will present their thesis work starting at 8 a.m. at the Colvard Student Union Art Gallery on the MSU campus.Visit to see their amazing work for free. For more information call 662-325-2930.

November 16

MSU Football Game MSU will host Alabama at Davis Wade Stadium. For ticket information and game time visit hailstate.com.


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November 16

Starkville Christmas Open House Get in the holiday spirit and join merchants around Starkville for their Open House from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. For more information and merchandisers participating visit starkville.org.

Bulldog Brunch & Browse Happening each home game of the MSU Football Season, Starkville will host a Bulldog Brunch & Browse in Downtown Starkville from noon-3 p.m. Restaurants and businesses participating will be open for business for family and friends to relax and shop after a big game day. For more information visit starkville.org.

November 19

Reception and Unveiling The Starkville Area Arts Council will host their Holiday Showcase Reception and the 2014 Cotton District Arts Festival poster will be unveiled from 6-7 p.m. For location and more information contact 662-324-3080 or visit starkvillearts.org or cdafestival. com.

November 21 BFA Thesis Show Reception

Public Reception for the MSU Department of Art Bachelors of Fine Arts graduating seniors in Fine Art and Photography. Come see the beautiful art made by these seven talented young artists.There will be food and beverages available. Reception is free and open to the public from 5:30-7:30 p.m. in the Colvard Student Union Art Gallery and The Cullis Wade Depot Art Gallery, second floor of the MSU Welcome Center. Call 662-325-2970 for more information.

“Sincerely Yours” The Columbus Arts Council Omnova Series: Coming to America will present “Sincerely Yours” starting at 7 p.m. Join Columbus Arts for a night of music and dramatic presentations to honor our veterans. For bus tour times and more information visit columbus-arts.org.

Ladies’ Night Out It’s Third Thursday on Mains Street, Louisville! Come enjoy some food and fantastic shopping for a Ladies Night Out from 5-7:30 pm.

November 22

Harrison Lecture Series

November 24

The MSU School of Architecture will present Will Bruder at the Giles Architecture Building at the Robert and Freda Harrison Auditorium starting at 4 p.m. For more information visit caad.msstate.edu.

The Central Station Grill in Starkville, Miss. will be hosting Grill Live featuring Stephanie Jackson, so come on out between 7 and 11 p.m.

November 23

MSU Football Game

Turkey Trot 5k & 10k and Canned Food Drive Join MSU Recreational Sports at the Sanderson Center at 8 a.m. for their Turkey Trot 5k & 10k. Registration is available in the Sanderson Center Membership Office and don’t forget three canned good items. For more information visit recsports.msstate.edu.

Columbus Holiday Farmers Market Join Columbus, Miss. and their Holiday Farmers Market showcasing local produce, live music, local art, children’s activities and much more just in time for Thanksgiving. For more information visit columbus-ms.org.

Grill Live

November 28

MSU will host Ole Miss at Davis Wade Stadium for the Egg Bowl at 6:30 p.m. For more information and game time visit hailstate.com.

December 8

Christmas Tour of Homes The Starkville Civic League Annual Christmas Tour of Homes will provide refreshments at the Starkville Public Library from 1-4 p.m.The Tour of holiday decorated homes will start at 1:30 pm and last until 4:30 pm. Tickets are available from Civic League members,The Book Mart, Designer’s Gallery, and at the library the day of the tour. For more information call: 662-418-6718.

Grill Live The Central Station Grill in Starkville, Miss. will be hosting Grill Live featuring Fingers, so come on out between 7 and 11 p.m.

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To Adver tise: Town & G own Magazine . P. 662-323-1642 . F. 662-323-6586 . townandgownmagazine.com 82

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November 2013  

November 2013

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