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MAX Central Station set to open

Bust a gut, Birmingham

Birmingham renews its commitment to a more comfortable, efficient and green public transit system for the city’s residents. Read more on Page 4.

The Goulash Comedy Showcase brings open mic and laughing crowds together for nights of fun and artistic freedom. Read more on Page 8.


Kaleidoscope Alighting Vulcan Kiwanis Club celebrates centennial anniversary by renovating Vulcan Park & Museum, surrounding trails

Chandler Jones Editor-in-Chief


f you ask Tom Thagard, president of the Kiwanis Club, he’ll say, “Birmingham is on the cusp of a Renaissance.” Birmingham’s Downtown Kiwanis Club serves as a part of the national brand focused on civic leadership and service. The local branch, which is the world’s largest Kiwanis Club boasting a membership rate of over 500 people, celebrated 100 years this past May and took to turn their internal success outward. The Kiwanis have a long-standing relationship with Vulcan, the popularized statute symbolizing Birmingham, starting back in the 1930s when the club orchestrated Vulcan’s move to where he stands today. “We were the group responsible for setting up Vulcan as the icon of Birmingham,” Thagard said. As a part of its centennial anniversary, the club will

These people love Birmingham so much and want to see Birmingham prosper and grow. I mean, how cool is it that they pick a project that not only screams Birmingham, but a project that they were involved in?” — Morgan Black spend $4.66 million to return the spark to the cast iron god. In doing so, they will connect downtown Birmingham to Green Springs Highway as part of a network of biking and walking trails. “These people love Birmingham so much and want to see Birmingham prosper and grow,” said Morgan Black, director of Marketing & PR for Vulcan Park and Museum. “I mean, how cool is it that they

pick a project that not only screams Birmingham, but a project that they were involved in?” The three-part project will add a new entrance staircase allowing access to Vulcan from Southside, renovate the old WPA piazza and name it Kiwanis Centennial Park. Second, they will extend Vulcan trail an additional mile.

See VULCAN, Page 9



Planting life brings inside joy

Bulls to return to the ice

Reinvigorate indoor space with seasonal splendor on a budget Kristinia Balciunaite Life and Style Editor


iving in a tiny dorm can be dull and depressing. There are many elements that could be used to lighten up a sad room, but one, in particular, is often overlooked. Plants and flowers alike are both cheap and effective room enhancers. Studies at Rutgers University have found that the presence of plants and flowers significantly increase our mental and emotional well-being. According to the study, they “create instant delight and enhance our life satisfaction.” Pam Boylen, one of the owners of Birmingham’s own Martin Flowers, said that, from her experience, plants do boost the energy and mood of people. According

to Boylen, flowers and plants have a significantly positive effect, especially someone who is ill. “Plants actually add oxygen to the atmosphere, especially in a closed room,” Boylen said. “They are great for small spaces.” Flowers, of course, usually last for up to two weeks, depending on how well they are maintained. Although they certainly lighten up a room, from a student’s perspective, a house plant would be a better investment. “The advantage of a plant is that it allows the smile to last day after day,” said Cameron Peppas, owner of Norton’s Florist. For a beginner, florists recommend plants such as peace lilies, philodendrons

See PLANTS, Page 9

Pelham Civic Center will add 400 more seats Sam Mabry Sports Reporter The South is well-known as football country. However, Art Clarkson looks to make the Birmingham Metro area a home for hockey once again. Clarkson announced earlier that the Birmingham Bulls are returning, which is the third installment of the team in the city. The Bulls played from 1976-1981 and again from 1992-2001. The two previous teams played in the Birmingham Jefferson Convention Center. PHOTO BY KRISTINIA BALCIUNAITE/LIFE AND STYLE EDITOR Norton’s Florist displays plant baskets, which are a blend of different floral arrangements.

See BULLS, Page 7
















Page 2 June 6, 2017

'So much more than talent'

2017 graduate to attend prestigious arts institution Sufia Alam Campus Reporter Sasha Kasman, a spring 2017 graduate of the Department of Music and the University Honors Program, will attend one of the nation’s top schools for music, the Juilliard School, beginning this fall. “Piano and music has always been a natural part of my environment,” said Sasha Kasman. “I’ve been surrounded by music my entire life, practically from birth.” Kasman is the oldest daughter of Yakov and Tatiana Kasman. Yakov Kasman, DMA, is professor of piano in the Department of Music and has performed and obtained numerous awards in piano during his career. Kasman’s mother, Tatiana Kasman is also an instructor and teaches piano ensemble and class piano at UAB. “My parents were my coaches, my drill sergeants, my No. 1 supporters,” Kasman said. “They taught me the importance of practicing 10 to 12 hours each day seven days a week.” Kasman has won several awards throughout her career and has credited much of her

skills to the persistence of her times missing opportunities to parents. Originally from Mosspend time with her friends for cow, Russia, Kasman said seethe sake of music. ing her parents practice 15-20 “She sacrifices a lot for hours a day in their apartment her craft, but it goes to show with their instruments allowed just how much she believes in Kasman to understand what it her music,” said Helen Bae, a would take to excel in piano. recent graduate of UAB. “She “It takes so much more just lights up when she is exthan talent,” Kasman said. plaining the beauty of a certain “And I think a lot of peopiece and she can show you the ple realize that too late, just intricate details that you would because you’re good at somenever have thought to listen to, thing doesn’t mean you will be making those Alabama Symsuccessful if you don’t have the phony [Orchestra] concerts a dedication and discipline.” lot more enjoyable for me.” Along with Juilliard, KasLeaving UAB, Kasman said man was accepted to the Yale one the things she will miss the University School of Music, the most will be the University’s Jacobs School at IndiDepartment of Music. ana University-BloomBecause of the departington, the Eastman ment, Kasman was able School of Music and the to take advantage of Peabody Conservatory many opportunities to at Johns Hopkins Unistrengthen her skills and versity, some of the namake lifelong friends. tion’s most prestigious “[Sasha’s] got the creKasman universities for music. dentials to prove herself,” Kasman said her goal when said Marta Pirosca, a recent she starts at Juilliard is to graduate of UAB. “She can be be more than just one of the pretty humble sometimes, so hundreds of talented musicians I’ll brag for her, she got acceptthat will be attending. Instead, ed to Juilliard. For music. And Kasman hopes to stand out wins a lot of competitions. So from the crowd. she’s pretty good.” “I have recitals at least twice After completing her masweek, I practice piano seven ter’s at Juilliard, Kasman hopes hours a day,” she said. “I’m go- to pursue her DMA, Doctorate ing to a school where everyone of Musical Arts, and possibly is the best what they do, and return to UAB as a professor of my goal is to be even better.” music. Kasman spent much of her Sufia Alam can be reached years at UAB rehearsing and at performing piano, and some-

Sufia Alam can be reached at

Sufia Alam can be reached at

—Sasha Kasman

AHA gives $3.7M for obesity studies Sufia Alam Campus Reporter The American Heart Association granted the UAB Strategically Focused Obesity Research Center $3.7 million over four years to fund research on obesity. UAB SFOC is one of four sites that will work together to continue the field of obesity research. According to the UAB School of Medicine, UAB SFOC will address two major issues within the field of diabetes research with the grant: metabolic abnormalities present in the womb and the underlying causes of these abnormalities. Along with UAB, the

all attempt to find the link between obesity and genes. One part of the study will be examining mothers and their infants, another will examine pregnant mothers and the last group will be examining mice and their infants. “The purpose of my research is to find and elucidate the metabolic pathways that contribute to obesity in women and children who have a history of obesity with or without diabetes during pregnancy.” Laney said. According to the AHA, nearly 78 million adults and 13 million children in the United States are influenced by the physical and emotional effects of obesity each day. “If being obese only depended on environment then all of us would be obese,” said Laney. “We are

Sufia Alam Campus Reporter

all living in this world where unhealthy food is the most popular option, but a lot of what happens to our bodies has to do with which genes are expressed and which aren’t.” Because the research has just begun, Laney said students who are interested in the study may need to wait a few years to see definite results. A healthy sleep cycle and a healthy diet, according to Laney, are the best changes a student can make for students who are attempting to be healthier. “Try the small changes first,” Laney said. “That one thing you absolutely love maybe you don’t need to eat it three times a day. Don’t be too drastic. Take it one step at a time.”

Piano and music has always been a natural part of my environment. I’ve been surrounded by music my entire life, practically from birth.

AHA has funded John Hopkins University, New York University Medical Center and Vanderbilt University Medical Center. All universities will be researching different characteristics of obesity with a combined fund of $15 million over the next four years. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive Health, 35.7 percent of adults in America are classified as obese. Paula Chandler-Laney, Ph.D., one of the principal investigators of the research, explained obesity is not the problem itself but the dangers that lie with the condition and the consequences to the body it brings, such as heart disease or diabetes. According to Laney, the four-year research at UAB is divided into three different groups that will

New band director appointed Fourth-grader Sean Murray sits down, breaks out his new alto saxophone and plays the song of the decade, “Songbird,” by his idol, Kenny G. Decades later, Murray has been appointed as an associate professor and the new director of bands for the UAB Department of Music. Murray, a Milwaukee, Wis. native, received his degrees from the Florida State University College of Music. Before his new Murray position at UAB, Murray held the position of associate professor of music at Florida Atlantic University as well as the director of athletic bands. Murray is well versed with music education and has taught multiple classes in music as well as supervised and conducted multiple bands at Florida Atlantic. Students in the music department are excited to see what new changes will arrive with the new director. “I think every person has their own preferences and styles and I’m eager to see what our Dr. Murray will bring,” said Cresslan Kennon, a post baccalaureate student in music education. Although Murray is experienced in several fields of music, Murray said what he enjoys the most is listening to and discovering new music. “One of my all-time favorite groups that always plays brilliant music is Radiohead,” said Murray. “Every time they come up with a new album [and] I recognize that there’s some great artistry there along with their pop elements.” With the return of UAB football, Murray said he looks forward to the music department being more involved with the entire UAB community. “Our goal is to go out and put a high-quality product on the field that’s fun as well as entertaining,” said Murray. “There’s nothing better than performing for a motivated crowd.” Murray also said he is sure the highlight of the fall will be the marching band’s involvement during football season. “The first game and coming out to the field for the pregame show will definitely be a sight to see,” said Murray. “When we finally hit the field and our fight song goes up and our blazer victory, that is going to be a special moment. Other students who are not associated with the department have also expressed interest in what the band will bring this fall and in the future. “I’m really looking forward to attending as many recitals and games I can this year to complete the UAB experience,” said Chris Lorimer, sophomore in English. “With football back I can’t wait to see the bands and cheerleaders on the field cheering the Blazers on.


Grant to analyze three categories of relationships


opinion Summer 2017 Chandler Jones Editor-in-Chief

Wallace Golding Managing Editor

Jack Ryan Sports Editor

Kristina Balciunaite Life & Style Editor

Connor McDonald Community Editor

Trinity Dix General Assignment Reporter

Sam Mabry Sports Reporter

Sufia Alam Campus Reporter

Page 3 June 6, 2017


An open letter to Mayor Bell Wallace Golding Managing Editor


ith August’s municipal elections quickly approaching, it is becoming increasingly apparent that Birmingham has reached a crossroads. One that is certain to cement the Magic City’s fate. I am not naïve enough nor pretentious enough to envision this city as a utopia. But, I am not jaded enough to believe that we are not capable and worthy of more. This city’s future could be picturesque, but this will never be the case if Birmingham does not make a change. If you ever take the time to read this, please understand that this is not an ill-hearted attempt at 15 minutes of fame. Another journalist making his foray into local politics by writing a scathing opinions piece? This may seem to be the case, but I can assure you that I write this letter out of a deep love for this city rather than a loathing for its leadership. Maybe this is too optimistic. Much like you have a reputation for not opening the emails and letters or listening to the voicemails of the very

citizens who elected you to national trend suggests that guide our city forward, I canwhile revitalization is good for not expect you to come across downtown areas, as it has been this, much less take time out of in downtown Birmingham, it your schedule to read it. almost always spills over into You see, Mr. Mayor, the surrounding neighI am reticent to speak borhoods. on behalf of the more We’ve been different. than 200,000 citizens Your policies and of this city. However, I unwillingness to cooperfeel that this letter is the ate with the city council only feasible way to call have kept the levees of attention to the issues, Golding growth from breaching. the broken promises In recent months, and the continued opacity of you have secured a nationyour administration in a public al park designation for our forum. historic Civil Rights District, The superficiality of enbrought tourist-like attractions chanting rhetoric only goes to the city, such as TopGolf, so far. It wasn’t until I dove a and spearheaded the implelittle deeper into my job as a mentation of a plan for the community reporter and, later, growth of the Uptown entereditor that I uncovered the tainment district complete with problems worthy of alarm. an open-air stadium. You promised economic While I certainly appreciate growth and you delivered. But, these projects, especially the when I extensively studied the latter of the three, these have trends of similar cities across largely taken place over the the Southeast, I learned that course of the year leading up Birmingham, though growing, to August’s elections and were was growing at a snail’s pace arguably spurred more by area compared to other major cities philanthropists than by your in the region. It’s tragic that leadership. your administration actually The glamour of these projhindered the growth the city ects may be enough to pull in would have likely seen resome people. Attempting to gardless of its leadership. The sway the undecided vote may

be considered by many to be politics as usual, but I consider it a convenient shot to skate easily into a third term. What matters more to me is what has happened in the remaining three years of your most recent term as mayor: an exorbitant crime rate that remains steady, extortionate spending via policies and agreements that do not benefit the city in the least, a seemingly grand presence of nepotism within City Hall and an egregious lack of consideration for those in the city who need your help the most. The Birmingham City School System still struggles. City government is constantly plagued by scandal. You take to fisticuffs to get your point across and refuse to work with your associates on the city council, suggesting that you care more about your salary than about the citizens. Birmingham is better than this. Birmingham deserves better than this. I sincerely hope that, come August, Birmingham becomes better than this. Wallace Golding can be reached at or on Twitter @WGolding_4.

Leisha Chamers Head Illustrator

Marie Sutton Director of Student Media

Patrick Johnson Production Manager



Student-friendly budgeting in 3 steps Stephanie R. Yates Director and Endowed Professor, UAB Regions Institute for Financial Education Send letters to the editor to Chandler Jones, Editor-in-Chief, at The Kaleidoscope functions as a memeber of UAB Student Media in association with UABTV, BlazeRadio and Aura. Website: Twitter @UABkscope Facebook Instagram uabkscope/ The Kaleidoscope is produced in the office of UAB Student Media. Suite 130 Hill Student Center 1400 University Blvd. Birmingham, 35233 (205) 934-3354

Do you have trouble sticking to your budget? Do you even have a budget? Your college years are often your first experience with managing your own money, so budgeting is a great place to start. U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren and her daughter, Amelia Warren Tyagi, wrote a seminal book on money management titled All Your Worth: The Ultimate Lifetime Money Plan. In it, they introduce the concept of the “50/30/20 Budget.” This is a great way to get started with budgeting. The 50/30/20 Budget suggests that you divide your money three ways: needs, wants and savings. Some suggest that you alter those categories to fixed, variable and savings. Either way, the idea is that you don’t necessarily have to budget your money to

specific categories. Instead, try thinking about the big picture. What are your fixed expenses like rent, car payments, etc.? These are typically also fixed to your needs. That is, your fixed expenses are ones that you usually can’t get rid of if times are tight. Altogether, these should equal no more than 50 percent of your monthly net income. What are your expenses that change every month? These are usually ones that you have some control over. For example, if you get a parttime job, you might be able to afford to spend more on dining out and entertainment than you would ordinarily. Altogether, these variable or discretionary expenses should equal no more than 30 percent of your monthly net income. If you have followed the 50/30/20 plan so far, then you know that you have 20 percent of your monthly net income remaining. This money should go toward savings. I know that sounds like a lot of money, but the idea is that if you can save

20 percent of your money each month you should be well-prepared for emergencies and future purchases. Also, keep in mind that if you are making monthly debt payments of any kind, those expenditures actually fall into this category because they aren’t really purchases and they limit the amount of money you can actually save. Your college years are a great time to create and to manage a budget. Hopefully, you haven’t incurred too much, if any, debt or other obligations so you have a lot of flexibility. Sticking to a budget is a great habit to start early and will help you stay on track to reaching your financial goals. Also, the 50/30/20 budget gives you great benchmarks for how much you should be spending in these very broad areas. Now, once you have this budget set, what’s next? The next step is actually following your budget. Track your spending regularly and make sure that your spending is within the guidelines that you’ve set with

your budget. Are you really saving 20 percent of your net income? If not, what do you need to change to get back on track? If you’ve never managed your own money before this may sound daunting, but with a little practice, money management isn’t hard. In fact, you will find that it can be a very rewarding path to realizing your financial dreams. Also, there are many resources to help you along the way. One such resource is UAB’s Regions Institute for Financial Education that is housed in the COLLAT School of Business. We facilitate regular events to help students and members of the Greater Birmingham community manage their finances. As Director of the Institute, I am delighted to be a contributor to Kaleidoscope. If you have specific questions about managing your money, please send your questions to us at RIFE@uab. edu. You just might see your question answered in the next edition of Kaleidoscope! Happy Budgeting!

community All through the town

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June 6, 2017


MAX Station maximizes bus system Connor McDonald Community Editor For almost two years, Autumn Stockwell taught in Tokyo where public transportation is the norm. “Living in Japan, I took the bus and train all the time. You had to if you wanted to get anywhere,” Stockwell said. “On the other hand, the buses here are slow, dated and less dependable. I’m not interested in riding the bus until I know those issues have been addressed.” With the soon-toopen MAX Central Station, the Birmingham-Jefferson County Transit Authority aims to improve bus services by increasing both quality and efficiency of bus service in the area. The new station, which is scheduled to open later this month, functions as a part of the Birmingham Intermodal Facility. The Intermodal Facility centralizes public transportation in Birmingham across three blocks on Morris Avenue downtown and will not fully open until later this year. The facility includes stations for MAX bus service, Greyhound bus service, Megabus service, Amtrak passenger rail service and a Zyp

PHOTO BY CONNOR MCDONALD / COMMUNITY EDITOR MAX Central Station bus bays remain empty awaiting opening day, which officals say is slated for later this month.

bike station. The MAX Central Station will be the first of these facilities to open. “I think things will be better in the brand-new facility,” said Ronda Robinson, BJCTA director of communications. “We will have more bus bays, and it will allow for more flexibility for our bus system. For example, our Highway 280 commuter route now can come down to central station versus stopping at the Summit and just doing the circulator on 280. That allows people who are coming from the Highway 280 area to come downtown, maybe go to a concert at the BJCC, go to Southside, go to Lakeview or anything like that. So, I

think, it will really bring all of our routes together.” The new stations are part of a series of improvements that the BJCTA has undertaken to breathe new life into the bus system. In addition to the new Magic City Connector buses, new technology like a smartphone bus locator, onboard Wi-Fi and computer aided dispatching will help to increase MAX’s ability to serve its riders. “I think the new station looks great,” said Patrick Green, a resident of Smithfield and MAX bus rider. “I hope it makes bus times shorter.” A food vendor, Olivia’s Transit Café, will be located inside of the


Community animal shelter moves forward Arts Tech Hub, Bus Rapid Transit System find their funding through federal grants Connor McDonald Community Editor At their May 30 regular meeting, the City Council approved resolutions accepting a grant for the creation of the Birmingham Bus Rapid Transit Project, applying for grants to build a new Arts Tech Hub at Sloss Furnaces and transferring ownership of a parcel of land to the Greater Birmingham Humane Society for redevelopment. City Council consented to the transfer of ownership of the 27-acre brownfield formerly home to Ingalls Iron Works and then, later, Trinity Steel on 6th Avenue South just west of I-65. Plans for the property call for it to eventually connect to the Rotary Trail. The site, which is situated in the North Titusville neighborhood, will be redeveloped and may contain facilities for a new Animal Care and Control facility, a new pet adoption and education center, amenities for the citizens and residents of the city and county to utilize and enjoy with their pets, a new Birmingham Police Department K-9 training and housing facility and a community dog park together with a path for running and walking. Plans also include a shelter hospital and veterinarian clinic for veterinary schools to operate a

program using students, a veterinary clinic for the organization Pets for Life, who provide off-the-street care for pets of low-income citizens and seniors, a dorm for four to eight veterinary students to provide 24-hour care and oversight on the property. The council also approved a grant agreement with the United States Department of Transportation accepting an award for a $20 million grant under the National Infrastructure Investments Discretionary Grant Program. The city is required to match funds of no less than $20 million. The funds will be used for the Birmingham Bus Rapid Transit Project, which will create bus-exclusive lanes to connect Birmingham’s neighborhoods and aims to reduce public transportation commute times. The council approved Mayor William Bell to submit a grant application to the National Endowment for the Arts for an amount of $100,000 to fund the creation of a new Art Tech Hub at Sloss Furnaces. The funds, which were awarded June 1, will allow the city to develop a masterplan for a new arts and technology complex at the site of the national historic landmark. Connor McDonald can be reached at or on Twitter @theconmcdon.

MAX Central Station. The restaurant, which is owned by Beverly Russel, will feature delicatessen foods, pizza and more and be open to the public. “The Magic City Connector is already changing perception about buses,” Robinson said. “They’re brandnew, beautiful buses. They’re [compressed natural gas] buses and have free Wi-Fi. The Magic City Connector buses are unique, because they only travel

from Uptown in Birmingham to Birmingham’s Southside up-anddown 20th Street all day long. For folks who want to go to a concert and then go to a bar or go to dinner and then go to a Baron’s game, it’s really, really convenient. Plus, it’s only a quarter.” The Magic City Connector buses began service early this spring replacing the old Dart line. “We are currently in the middle of a whole revamping process of

our entire system. Because our communities are constantly changing, we want to change with our communities, so we want to go where the people go. If we notice there are more people moving to downtown Birmingham, we want to make sure we have more stops available for where people are moving to.” Connor McDonald can be reached at or on Twitter @theconmcdon.

June 6, 2017

The Kaleidoscope

Page 5 | Community


Going up in Ensley Neighborhood anticipates a brighter future Connor McDonald Community Editor Rusted smoke stacks and abandoned buildings fill the skyline of what was once one of the busiest, most densely populated areas in Alabama. Silent streets decorated with fading murals depicting a PHOTO BY CONNOR MCDONALD / COMMUNITY EDITOR strong, industrial past serve Workers were seen outside the Ramsay-McCormack building May 23 as a reminder of where Ensley has been, while fewer blight. where to eat, and you may and fewer people remain to Since its decline, refind that some want to live wonder where Ensley will vitalization efforts have closer to where they work.” go. been attempted time-afThe proposed Ensley Named for its founder ter-time with little results. Junction mixed-use develColonel Enoch Ensley, the Now, with Mayor William opment that is meant to area got its start in 1886 as Bell’s plans for the new complement the proposed one of the many industriPublic Safety Municipal Public Safety Municipal al towns that would later Complex and the recentComplex will include both merge into Birmingly-announced Ensley commercial and residential ham as the area Junction mixed-use space. The development developed. Because development, Ensley will overlook a one-block of its location on neighborhood Vice park from 17th Street bethe southern edge of President Ron Hall tween Avenue E and F. the Pratt Coal Seam said he sees a bright The Bethel Ensley Acnear Village Creek future much like tion Task Inc. is working and the Louisville & Ensley residents saw to raise the $24.6 million Hall Nashville Railroad, a century before. required for the project, Ensley himself considered “I was born and raised which will include a comthe location to be perfect in Ensley and I’m 63 years munity health center and a for the manufacturing of old,” Hall said. “I’ve been business incubator. BEAT —Ron Hall iron and steel. here all my life. I’ve seen plans on making use of a Ensley saw rapid growth the glory days and I’ve seen mix of federal tax credits, a from its founding until the low days. People ask the national average. capital campaign and funds the Great Depression. The me why I am still in Ensley “Regardless of the from the city to meet their Depression hit Birmingham since I’m an Allstate agent crime that you hear about goal. harder than any other city and my income is pretty up Ensley, you know, that’s a “I love Ensley. I have in the nation, and Ensley there, but there’s just some- small segment of people. faith that, one day, it’s was hit the hardest. When thing about being rooted. I The majority of people going to turn around, and city leaders announced live about two blocks from are law-abiding, Christian I’m seeing it now. I see the in 1934 that 40 percent my family house where I people. Many of the crimes progress, being a neighof people in Birmingham was raised, I own propercommitted in Ensley are borhood officer, I have my received some form of ecoty in Ensley so I feel like committed by people from hands on a lot of things nomic aid, President Frank- I have a stake in it. I love outside [of Ensley],” Hall that’s going to happen. lin D. Roosevelt called the Ensley.” said. “Property values are Plus, I have the ability to city “the worst hit town in According to the 2012 low, and income is low, but help make things happen the country.” Crime Rate Indexes, crime the things I see coming to there,” Hall said. “We just From the end of the rates are higher in Ensley Ensley, I think, are going got back from a NeighDepression onward, it saw than they are around down- to change a lot of that. The borhoods USA conference, moderate growth until the town and Southside in every [Public Safety Municipal] and I’ve gathered a lot of closure of Ensley Works, category except for RobComplex is going to be a ideas that I’m bring back to the heart of Ensley’s indusbery and Larceny. Although major boost to Ensley bemy neighborhood to make try, during the late 1970s. Ensley has more crime on cause when you’re talking things happen.” Since the 1970s, Ensley paper, both areas are still wabout a complex of that Connor McDonald can be has lost about 80% of well above the national avsize, that’s 500 to 600 peoreached at its population, leading to erage and are closer to each ple. That many employees, or on Twitter @theconmcdon. widespread vacancies and other in crime than they are they have to have some-

Much like people today say that they are ‘going downtown,’ back in the day, we would say we were ‘going up in Ensley.’


City escapes bring reprieve Chandler Jones Editor-in-Chief In the 1920s the Kiwanis Club of Birmingham sought out the Olmsted brothers to build a comprehensive park system for the city of Birmingham. The brothers, sons of the Central Park designer Frederick Law Olmsted, arrived to create a parks system that included many of the parks still popular today such as Avondale Park, Linn Park, East Lake Park and the Birmingham Zoo and

Botanical Gardens. These invaluable and timeless spaces in our sprawling and expanding city sit as vital preserves giving access to nature, beauty and quiet reprieve. Fast forward nearly a century and the Parks and Recreation Board for the city of Birmingham persists in making these small areas clean and friendly all year long. “You are never going to be too far away from a park here in Birmingham,” said Stanley Robinson, public relations coordinator with Birmingham Park

and Recreation Board. With 115 parks, 21 recreation centers and even a few pools, the parks of Birmingham are thriving In fact, per capita, Birmingham has the most public greenspace of any city in the US. Most events are free or nominally priced which allows families, college students and area community to come together in a pleasant and open space. Robinson says the biggest crowds can be found at car shows, and that the annual Family Fishing Rodeo held at East Lake

Park is always their most attended event. They also boast free events like the weekly Movies in Avondale Park and Magic City Smooth Jazz. “All those things are great,” Robinson said. “I like going to the park and sitting, getting a book and listening to nature going on around me. I am drawn to the solitude of the park.” Robinson said that personal parties and reservations can be made at the Parks and Recreation Board office.

PHOTO CONTRIBUTED BY STANLEY ROBINSON Stanley Robinson, public relations coordinator with Birmingham Park and Recreation Board, says East Lake Park will soon be offering free paddling instruction.


I-20/59 project to delay traffic Exit 125A to be closed until summer 2018 Wallace Golding Managing Editor One of Birmingham’s busiest exits from Interstate 20/59 was closed May 31 as part of an ongoing $500 million project to modernize the downtown leg of the interstate. Exit 125A onto 17th Street North will remain closed until summer 2018. Latest estimates suggest that the project will take approximately 13 months to complete. According to Linda Crockett, ALDOT’s public information officer, the exit served approximately 7,800 southbound vehicles, 5,300 westbound vehicles and 6,000 eastbound vehicles per day before its closure. To ease the impact to traffic circulating through the area, traffic will be directed to Exit 125B onto 22nd Street North throughout the closure period. Traffic signals on the 22nd Street North will also be turned off to allow free-flowing movement to the south. However, these adjustments are unlikely to alleviate the traffic expected as a result of this closure. “Although ALDOT intends to take steps to assist traffic flow, it is likely that traffic volume will exceed the capacity of these adjustments to diffuse the increase in volume sufficient to prevent delays,” said Darrell O’Quinn, director of Move I-20/59 and a candidate for the Birmingham City Council. “It’s difficult to predict the extent and impacts of the shifts in volume. However, I believe it is safe to say that this closure will be a majorly disruptive event for those located in the area as well as those attempting to access or pass through it.” The project has brought a degree of renewed attention to the Move I-20/59 organization, which attempted to spur continued economic development downtown by advocating for a rerouting of the interstate, only six months after it was dissolved. To O’Quinn, this is an important step forward for the now defunct organization’s ongoing mission. “Given the prior intransigence of the parties involved toward considering other options, it is difficult to envision this affecting a different outcome,” O’Quinn said. “Nevertheless, we will continue to advocate for additional considerations.” The closure is part of phase two of the ongoing 59/20 Bridges Project. This phase’s cost totals approximately $208.6 million and is a precursor to phase three, which will see the closure of the entire downtown leg of I-20/59 in order to reconstruct the system. “The 17th Street North closure dwarfs in comparison to the planned closure of the entire highway,” O’Quinn said. “This portion will last about a year and will put increased stress on the remainder of Birmingham’s highways.” Wallace Golding can be reached at or on Twitter @WS_Golding.


Page 6 June 6, 2017


PHOTO CONTRIBUTED BY CONFERENCE USA The Ford Center is located on The Star campus of the Dallas Cowboys, and will host the conference basketball tournaments for the next two years.

Tournament heads to Frisco Birmingham says farewell after hosting for three years Sam Mabry Sports Reporter After three years of the Conference USA Basketball Tournaments being hosted in downtown Birmingham, there will be a new venue for the tournaments for the 2017-2018 and 20182019 seasons. Birmingham’s stretch is the second-longest tenure for any city and the longest since Memphis, Tennessee hosted the tournament from 2005-2010. While the tournament was here,

UAB used the home crowd advantage to propel them to the tournament championship in 2015, just three months after the shutdown of the UAB Football program. The new home for the tournaments will be Frisco, Texas at the newly built Ford Center at The Star. The Ford Center is on the campus of the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys practice facility. Nearby, the University of North Texas will be the host school for the next two tournaments. “We are excited

about the opportunity to play in a stateof-the-art facility in Frisco and showcase our basketball tournament in a different part of the country” said UAB Men’s Basketball Head Coach Rob Ehsan. “Hosting the tournament the last three years was a tremendous honor and privilege, and we look forward to hopefully having the event return to Birmingham in the near future.” The Ford Center is a 12,000-seat indoor stadium that hosts a large variety of different events, including high school football games and basketball tournaments. “We are excited to

have our men’s and women’s basketball teams compete at Ford Center at The Star in Frisco” said C-USA Commissioner Judy MacLeod. “This unique setting within an outstanding venue and a thriving area will truly add to the championship experience of our student-athletes and fans.” Next season’s tournament will take place from March 7 to March 10. All 14 C-USA teams will play in each the men’s and women’s tournaments. There are 22 games total, and they are being split with 11 games for both the men’s and women’s basketball teams.

“Frisco is a great location for these games, because our community is active, collaborative and sport-centric.” said Frisco Mayor Maher Maso. “Hosting the Conference USA Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championships enhances our reputation as a tourist and sports destination while providing entertainment and economic benefits for our residents.” While the UAB Women’s Basketball team did not win a championship while the tournament was in Birmingham, they did have success. The team made it to the second round of the tourna-

ment twice. “Hosting the conference tournament here the last three years has been such an honor” said UAB Women’s Basketball Head Coach Randy Norton. “UAB was given the opportunity to showcase Bartow Arena and Birmingham to the fans of the league. It has been great exposure for the Birmingham community and the University. We were very fortunate to have that opportunity. Hopefully, the tournament will return to Birmingham in the future, but we are excited for new beginnings out in Frisco.” Sam Mabry can be reached at


Time to pay the athletes distributed among the schools. The University of Georgia received the ne of the greatmost at $41.8 million, est days for a and the University of high school ath- Alabama along with lete comes on the day the University of Misthey sign the National sissippi received the Letter of Intent. The least at $39.1 million. NLI is their promise The SEC by far to attend the school to generated the most which they sign. revenue, but other The primary guarconferences were not antee from the NCAA far behind. During the is a right to a full 2016 College Football scholarship so long as Playoffs, conferences the athlete maintains a received a payout of $6 sufficient grade-point million for their teams average to continue playing in the games. playing their sport. For instance, the Big However, it does not XII conference reguarantee any ceived $95 million extra money after the football in the form of playoffs. However, stipends on the aside from going side to help toward athlete’s students with scholarships, the the day-to-day athletes never necessities of receive any of that Ryan being a college money. student. “I believe the NCAA First and foremost, needs to pay a stipend an NCAA athlete is still to its athletes.” said a student. While the Bianca Dufelmeier, a scholarship pays for UAB Basketball alumeverything academic nae. “One of the main including rooms, books reasons being our sport and classes, it does not is a job. We spend cover things like latecountless hours in the night grocery runs and gym or weight room non-meal plan food preparing our bodies items like Milo’s or and skill set for the Chick-fil-A. upcoming seasons. If In the era of mega we aren’t in the gym or revenues for the weight room, we are in NCAA, a debate of the classroom full-time paying athletes has as it is a requirement of emerged among the the NCAA. ranks of writers and Regular students get sports geniuses. to choose class times, According to South- and have some time for eastern Conference tax a job. As a student-athreturns, the conference lete, depending on the generated $639 milsport, we simply do lion. This money was not have time to have

Jack Ryan Sports Editor


a job.” Because they do not have time for a job, some athletes do not have a way to make or get money. This makes basic necessities sometimes difficult to achieve. The National College Players Association found that about 86 percent of athletes come from a background of poverty. They also found the out of pocket expense for an athlete was just over $3,000 per year. One of the ideas for payment swelling in the sports world is paying an athlete based on popularity. While this is biased, it could be a steppingstone. The concept comes from the attention Johnny Manziel No. 2 Texas A&M University jersey receives. It draws more revenue for the university than just a generic or no-name No. 2 jersey. The NCPA found that Duke University basketball players were valued at just over $1 million. Some argue that the NCAA should pay their athletes a salary. This would make college sports a job just as they are in the professional setting. The NCAA’s estimated revenue from this past year was $995.9 million. They should find a way to help their athletes. Jack Ryan can be reached at and on Twitter @kscope_sports.

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June 6, 2017

The Kaleidoscope

Page 7 | Sports


In the rearview mirror Marla Townsend’s positive outlook going forward Trinity Dix General Assignment Reporter In Hattiesburg, Mississippi, the UAB softball team fought tooth and nail to save their season. They rallied from four runs down in the final inning to tie the game and send it into extra innings. Then, their season still had life. That came to a close as the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers downed the Blazers in 12 innings to close the book on the season. The Blazers ended the season with a 21-33 record overall and finished 12-12 in Conference USA play. The year got off to a slow start as the Blazers dropped their first five games in two separate tournaments. However, by the end of the season, the team grew and three freshmen emerged as staples in the UAB lineup. “Our freshmen were fun to watch,” said Head Coach Marla Townsend. “They grew tremendously and took advantage of every opportunity they were given. As a team, I felt like we grew toward the end of the year and really started to play Blazer softball.” Freshman pitcher Claire Blount, freshman outfielder Destini England and freshman infielder Natalie Erwin stood out on the diamond as the players to keep an eye on during their careers at UAB. The duo of England and Blount played their way onto the C-USA All Freshman Team.

PHOTOS COURTESY OF UAB ATHLETICS COMMUNICATIONS Senior infielder Amy Waters applies the tag to the University of Texas El Paso’s Lindsey Sokoloski. BELOW: Freshman pitcher Claire Blount winds up to a deliver a pitch.

England hit for a .279 batting average, started in 50 of 54 games and knocked in 13 batters. As for Erwin, she held a batting average of .217, recorded seven runs batted in and assisted on outs in the field 92 times. In the circle, Blount held a 2.94 earned run average and pitched for 162 innings. She was ranked fifth in the league with 126 strikeouts. She allowed 94 runs during the season. Senior designated hitter Mary Warren once again proved herself as a headstrong softball player in the batter’s box. Overall, she hit six home runs, knocked 20 batters in and held a .290 batting average. Despite being out for several weeks with an injury, her powerful swings changed many of the games the team played. Senior right-hand pitcher Cara Goodwin made herself known once again to the same

They grew tremendously and took advantage of every opportunity they were given. As a team, I felt like we grew toward the end of the year and really started to play Blazer softball. -Marla Townsend

adversaries after finding her rhythm midway into the season. On April 14, Goodwin set a personal strikeout record of 10 at home against the University of North Texas Mean Green. Overall, Goodwin struck out 94 players, appeared in 29 games, started in 19 games and had only two wild pitches. She allowed 75 runs, 48 walks and made 65 errors this past season. “It is extremely hard to face teams [for] four straight years with them knowing what pitches you throw and

your speed,” Townsend said. “She worked hard all year, and it paid off down the stretch.” Overall, the team had a great season despite losing more games than they won. Townsend felt that they improved as a team, especially in the final weeks of the season. “I expect our mental game to be much better,” Townsend said. “My staff challenged the ladies to work hard over the summer both physically and mentally.” Trinity Dix can be reached at


From Page 1 The new rendition of the Birmingham Bulls is an expansion team that will be playing in the Southern Professional Hockey League, along with nine other teams spread throughout the southeastern United States. Clarkson said the team will play in the Pelham Civic Center for the next five years. The Civic Center will undergo $1 million worth of renovations to make it more amenable to a professional hockey team. After the first set of these renovations, there will be 4,000 seats inside the civic center. Clarkson said the first set of renovations will be ready for the beginning of the Bulls first season. “The BJCC isn’t equipped for hockey,” said Joe Stroud, general manager of the Bulls. “They sold the boards and the glass and need to work on the piping system to keep the ice cool enough for a game of hockey. Pelham came aggressively.” After a hiatus from hockey, rumors began swirling in the beginning of the year that hockey could return to Birmingham. “I was involved from 1994-1998 with the old

PHOTO COURTESY OF ALABAMA MEDIA GROUP | AL.COM FILE, MOBILE REGISTER, G.M. ANDREWS Mobile Mysticks Jason Clarke (33) flips the puck past Birmingham Bulls right wing Jeff Scharf (11) during first-period action on Friday, Feb. 4, 2000.

PHOTO COURTESY OF ALABAMA MEDIA GROUP | AL.COM FILE, BEVERLY TAYLOR, THE BIRMINGHAM NEWS The New England Whalers of the World Hockey Association take on the Birmingham Bulls on Dec. 9, 1977 at the BJCC. Two days earlier, Gordie Howe scored hi 1,000th career goal for the Whalers.

Bulls,” Stroud said. “Art [Clarkson] started talking about bringing the Bulls back, and I was one of the first people he reached out to. The great thing is the Bulls of the past left a great reputation. One of those things where everyone is excited for us to come back.” The SPHL has the same standard rules as the NHL and competitive balance is also maintained by a salary

are coming off their first full season where they went 6-7. The team regularly sold out the Civic Center to standing room capacity. “I really feel that the Bulls coming back can really spark even more interest in hockey in the South,” said UAB Hockey player Jakob Hornsby. “The Bulls coming back will bring the fans from the 90s and could even help interest those fans in UAB Hockey.

cap. The Bulls will start recruiting players from around the country in the coming weeks. “There’s an expansion draft, and we are getting six players from that,” Stroud said. “The players from this draft are coming from different colleges throughout Canada and the USA.” An added beneficiary from this deal will be the UAB Hockey Club. The Blazers

The expansion will make the fan experience even greater than it already is. I’m really excited for what is to come this coming season and the years to come for UAB as well as the Bulls organization.” The Bulls’ season begins Oct. 27. They play 28 home games during the season with the first one Nov. 3. Sam Mabry can be reached at

Life and Style

Page 8 June 6, 2017


Waking up to productivity Morning habits of some of the most successful people at UAB Trinity Dix General Assignment Reporter


uccess does not happen overnight, but simple, small, daily habits can end up shaping our character and work ethic. Four people, who have achieved success in their disciplines, open up about their morning habits. *** Aidan O’Beirne won the Department of Energy’s Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internship and performed research at the Los Alamos National Laboratory last year. He also won the Goldwater Honorable Mention and the Most Outstanding Physics Student award in the 20162017 year. O’Beirne graduated UAB this spring with a 4.0 GPA. He will attend Stanford University to obtain his Ph.D. in condensed matter physics Time he wakes up 6:15 a.m. “I think getting up early is a good start to a proactive day in general,” O’Beirne said. “My mornings are important because that is when I prepare my mind for the day. I think

using this time effectively is a good approach for success.” Morning routine After an occasional workout, O’Beirne starts the day with a cup of coffee outside while relaxing with a physics book before getting ready to head out. “I read for maybe 30 to 45 minutes, maybe less,” O’Beirne said. “It all depends on how long the chapter or whatever I’m reading is.”

Honors College Leadership Council. She is also a thirdyear Honors Ambassador and serves as an international mentor to incoming international students. Time she wakes up 6:45 a.m. - 7:00 a.m. Massey sets more than one alarm, in order to ensure her punctuality. “The seven alarms are the keys to my success,” Massey said.

I think using this time effectively is a good approach for success.”

Morning routine Every morning, Massey practices the Chinese language in her car on her way to school. In*** stead of coffee, —Aidan O’Beirne Rebecca Massey drinks Massey, a Coca-Cola. She pre-med senior sticks to her majoring in anthropology, is routine strictly because, in her a student in the Science and experience, the times she has Technology Honors Program. had to run out the door in In her freshman and sophthe morning have resulted in omore years, she attended poor performance and state of the Clinton Global Initiative mind throughout that day. University as a national fel“I’m always somewhere by lowship recipient. eight,” Massey said. “I realShe made a name for ized that if I do this every day, herself by her junior year after it would make my life easier.” founding an organization known as Pre-Med Partners. *** Recently, honors students Alison Chapman, Ph.D. elected her as president of the was born and raised in Bir-

mingham, English professor and department Chair Alison Chapman has achieved many things in her life. In 2000, Chapman returned to Birmingham from Tulane University in New Orleans to take a position in the UAB Department of English. She enjoyed being an instructor and assistant professor and continued to move through the ranks to eventually become the Department Chair. In 2016, she won the Odessa Woolfolk Community Service Award for her work at maximum security prisons.

I’m always somewhere by eight. I realized that if I do this every day, it would make my life easier.”

Time he wakes up

8 a.m. Morning Time she routine wakes up Exercise is an 4:30 a.m. important part Morning of Bhambhvani’s routine daily routine, as — Rebecca Massey Chapman it helps him gain starts her day energy to outlast by tending to her dogs and his hard work. After finishing relaxing with a cup of coffee. his exercise for the day, he Thereafter, she works at home replaces his “cup of joe” with from her laptop for at least an milk or water, because exerhour. She makes sure to get a cise awakens him as much as portion of her work done in coffee would. the first hour of her day, before “Coffee is usually reserved even going to work. for studying,” Bhambhvani “I would say that it’s the said. “But I don’t frequently hour of really high intensity,” drink energy drinks.” Chapman said. “That is the Trinity Dix can be reached absolute best and most proat ductive time of my day.”


Laughter for the people

Goulash Comedy Showcase invites the public to speak their mind

BLAUGH TRACK How much power is necessary to run UAB? One Ray Watts

Kristina Balciunaite Life and Style Editor Birmingham defines itself by its culture, and as the city progresses, so does its entertainment scene. Music, art and even comedy have become an increasingly popular social gathering purpose. The Goulash Comedy Showcase at the Syndicate Lounge is one of the resources for aspiring comedians to show their work and for locals to see them. Chris Ivy, stand-up comedian and organizer of the Goulash Comedy Showcase, has been performing comedy for the last four years and poetry, the majority of his life. After graduating from The School of Journalism and Electronic Media at the University of Tennessee, he moved to Birmingham to work as a sales manager. Rap music, poetry and comedy play a big role in Ivy’s life, which is why he is actively involved in the promotion of those art forms. Every Monday at 9 p.m. at the Syndicate Lounge on 20th Street South, 10 to 30 comedians perform and experiment with their comedic and musical material. “I think any art is important to the community because it brings people joy,” Ivy said. “People are just happy, they are just in a good mood.” Ivy decided to organize a weekly open mic because he felt he often did not get to finish his set on other showcases as they tended to interrupt performances prematurely. Therefore, Ivy started his own showcase, so that both he and the other participants would get the resources, space and time they need to practice and evolve their material.

*** Hriday Bhambhvani was a finalist for the 2017 Gates Cambridge Scholarship and received the 2017 Fulbright Research Grant Scholarship. Back in 2016, he received the Goldwater Scholarship Honorable Mention. Like O’Beirne, Bhambhvani graduated April 29 with dual Bachelor of Science degrees in neuroscience and mathematics. In August, he starts medical school at Stanford University.

Why do the flowers on University Boulevard look pretty? Because Blaze has a green thumb.

Why can’t UAB students get through airport security? Because they’re from the Iron City.

PHOTOS CONTRIBUTED BY TOLLIE JONES Local comedian performs to an audience at the Syndicate Lounge. BELOW: Comedian Chris Ivy laughs during his set at the Syndicate Lounge.

“Everybody is themselves and then they have a persona created for Instagram,” Ivy said. “No one’s honest about anything, and it’s very frustrating. You hope that people get up and just say some honest shit.” Goulash Comedy Showcase allows anyone try out their entertainment talents in front of an audience. Even the name of the event suggests everyone is welcome as “goulash” is a type of stew that includes a lot of different contents. “I think, we often feel like talent is so far away that we need to pay $200 to see it,” Ivy said. “But it’s staring you in the face. It’s right there.” Ivy also organizes the annual Birmingham Comedy Festival. This year, the event included more than 20 shows with performers from across the country. Star comedians, including Myq Kaplan, who performed in April and Tig Notaro, who will perform in August, are popular-

izing comedic life in Birmingham. “That’s the interesting thing about this city,” Ivy said. “Birmingham has all the tools and all the things for someone to make something incredible here.”

Michael Ruffino, a senior in communications studies, has been performing and attending the showcase for years. For him, this has been an opportunity to practice the talents he plans to pursue after he graduates. “Goulash has become the mic to go to in Birmingham for comedy,” Ruffino said. “I’m so grateful that Chris and the Syndicate Lounge have given the local comedy community a space to practice week after week.” Whether you are an aspiring comedian, musician or poet, you want to try something new or just get out on a Monday night, the Goulash Comedy Showcase is your go-to place. “I hope people from UAB come,” Ivy said. “I hope people who have something to say

come out and say it.”

Kristina Balciunaite can be reached at and on Twitter at @KscopeKristina.

Why is the Auburn Tiger jealous of Blaze? Because Blaze lives in a city with more ham.

Why did Vulcan say he didn’t like Birmingham? He was being ironic.

Why did the chicken cross the road? Because he lives in Blount Hall.

How do you catch a dragon? With BlazerNet

June 6, 2017

The Kaleidoscope

Page 9

PHOTOS COURTESY OF THE KIWANIS CLUB OF BIRMINGHAM FRONT PAGE, ABOVE & BELOW: Renderings of the renovations of Vulcan’s northside display the Kiwanis Centennial Park. The three-part plan looks to create a more visual appealing look and extensive trail system.

Vulcan From Page 1

The third part of the project involves installing a computerized LED light show on Vulcan’s pedestal and body. “If you look up, you’ll see that Vulcan is separated from downtown Birmingham by trees and overgrowth,” Thagard said. “… We are going to reconnect Vulcan to Birmingham by landscaping the north side of the park and taking it back to its original WPA roots.” The interconnecting of the trails surrounding Vulcan will connect 20th Street to Green Springs Highway which is significant for the Freshwater Land Trust because it connects above the mountain to below the mountain and lays the

framework to make other, smaller connections to happen, according to Carolyn Buck, Red Rock Trail Coordinator with Freshwater Land Trust. “…To see the progress that Birmingham is making in becoming a more walkable, bikeable and more outdoor activity friendly city,” Buck said. “It’s really exciting.” When the CEO of Vulcan pitched the idea to the Kiwanis Club, Black said, she never imagined it becoming this big. The Vulcan trail extension will ultimately allow for nearly 40 miles of interconnected trails. “We hope to catalyze the connection between all these smaller parts,” Thagard said. “Birmingham doesn’t have like a river system for the

tourist attraction, but if we had an interconnected trail system from which people can walk to Regions Field to Vulcan to the Zoo to the Botanical Gardens and to Avondale or to ride their

bike to Red Mountain Park and around Homewood and back again, you know, that’s something really special for Birmingham citizens and for the tourist trade.” As for lighting up Vulcan,

Kiwanis hired one of the nation’s premier lighting design teams based out of Chicago. “The limits to what we can do with the lighting are just in our imagination,” Thagard said. Thagard said he has been hard at work on this project for the last 51 months. The club sorted through nearly 40 other centennial project ideas. “We settled on this one because it had a little magic to it,” Thagard said. To donate to the Kiwanis Club’s renovation of Vulcan, they have set up a GoFundMe available at https://www. Chandler Jones can be reached at and on Twitter @chanjone7.

Bring us your:

PHOTO BY KRISTINIA BALCIUNAITE/LIFE AND STYLE EDITOR If you are looking to simply try out something different for your room, without necessarily committing to a plant, a bouquet or even a single flower, could change the atmosphere and feeling of an inside space.

Plants From Page 1

and pothos plant (also known as “devil’s ivy”). These are the easiest plants to take care of, as they only require water when the superficial dirt is dry. As long as they are kept in the sunlight, they can last for years. They come in a price range from $20 to $60 depending on their size. Other good options could be plant baskets. They require the same attention as more low-maintenance plants, like peace lilies, and add that extra touch of warmth and coziness to the scenery. If you are set on a higher-end flower, an orchid is a great investment. They don’t require much water, they should be kept in environments that are well lit, warm and non-drafty. Although they only bloom annually, they are certainly worth the patience. “Anything alive adds a little cheer to the room,” said Addrienne Gunselman, an employee at Norton’s

Florist. If you are looking to simply try out something different for your room, without necessarily committing to a plant, a bouquet or even a single flower, could change the atmosphere and feeling of an inside space. Wildflowers may be the most romantic and seasonal, but there is always a selection of flowers at the local florist. Norton’s Florist recently completed a campaign entitled #PetalItForward as part of an initiative of the Society of American Florists. Two bouquets were handed out to bypassers on the street. One of the bouquets was meant for the initial receiver and the other was meant to be re-gifted to a stranger. This campaign was organized as an act of fun and kindness, with the subtext that flowers, in fact, do lift the spirit of the receivers. So before springing for some overpriced decorative pillows and “home sweet home” posters, consider adding a little life to the room. Literally. Kristinia Balciunaite can be reached at krib-

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Page 10

The Kaleidoscope

June 6, 2017

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June 6, 2017 Kscope  

Alighting Vulcan

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