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Make your house happy CHANGEOUT Home improvement projects that save energy

MAY 2018

SC TR AVE LS

Tigers at the beach SC RECIPE

Diner favorites


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THE MAGAZINE FOR COOPERATIVE MEMBERS VOLUME 72 • NUMBER 5 (ISSN 0047-486X, USPS 316-240) Read in more than 584,000 homes and businesses and published monthly except in December by The Electric Cooperatives of South Carolina, Inc. 808 Knox Abbott Drive Cayce, SC 29033 Tel: (803) 926‑3175 Fax: (803) 796‑6064 Email: letters@scliving.coop

2018 | may 14 Energy upgrades for

a happier home

EDITOR

Boost your family’s comfort and cut energy use on your next home improvement project.

Keith Phillips Tel: (803) 739‑3040 Email: Keith.Phillips@ecsc.org FIELD EDITOR

Walter Allread PUBLICATION COORDINATOR

4 CO-OP NEWS

ART DIRECTOR

6 AGENDA

Sharri Harris Wolfgang

South Carolina’s electric cooperatives demonstrate their concern for community by supporting continuing education for teachers and science competitions for students.

DESIGNER

Susan Collins PRODUCTION

Andrew Chapman

10 DIALOGUE Even shepherds need a break

WEB EDITOR

Chase Toler COPY EDITOR

Caring for an ailing loved one takes a toll on the body and spirit. Mepkin Abbey’s caregiver retreats offer a chance to rest and recharge.

L. Kim Welborn CONTRIBUTORS

Jayne Cannon, Mike Couick, Derrill Holley, Jan A. Igoe, L.A. Jackson, Thomas Kirk, Diane Veto Parham, Sydney Patterson, Susan Hill Smith, Belinda Smith-Sullivan, Libby Swope Wiersema

12 SMART CHOICE Marvelous Mom Show Mom how much you love her with one of these mother-approved gifts.

PUBLISHER

Lou Green ADVERTISING

Mary Watts Tel: (803) 739‑5074 Email: ads@scliving.coop

21 STORIES Smart moves At age 17, Kira Adkins is bypassing the traditional college experience to make history at the Medical University of South Carolina.

NATIONAL REPRESENTATION

American MainStreet Publications Tel: (800) 626‑1181 Paid advertisements are not endorsements by any electric cooperative or this publication. If you encounter a difficulty with an advertisement, inform the Editor.

22

local co-op. Postmaster: Send Form 3579 to Address Change, c/o the address above. Periodicals postage paid at Columbia, S.C., and additional mailing offices.

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of South Carolina, Inc. No portion of South Carolina Living may be reproduced without permission of the Editor. is brought to you by your member-owned, taxpaying, not-for-profit electric cooperative to inform you about your cooperative, wise energy use and the faces and places that identify the Palmetto State. Electric cooperatives are South Carolina’s — and America’s — largest utility network. $5.72 members,

TRAVELS

Touch the wild

RECIPE

Diner delights Delicious, simple and timeless—all-American diner food is the ultimate feel-good eating experience. Chef Belinda shows you how to make your favorites at home.

© COPYRIGHT 2018. The Electric Cooperatives

SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING

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Head to Myrtle Beach for an exotic animal safari that doesn’t require a passport or 80,000 frequent flyer miles.

ADDRESS CHANGES: Please send to your

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CHEF’S CHOICE

A taste of Darlington Take the freshest locally grown vegetables, cook according to old Southern recipes and serve in a historic home. That’s the recipe for success at Darlington’s South of Pearl restaurant.

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$8 nonmembers

GARDENER

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Don’t fear the fairy rings Our gardening wizard offers sound advice for dealing with the seasonal outbreak of mushroom circles known as fairy rings.

34 36 38

MARKETPLACE CALENDAR HUMOR ME

Not your mama’s manners Thanks to YouTube, bad table manners have never been more prevalent—or profitable.

Member of the AMP network reaching more than 9 million homes and businesses

Make your house happy Home improvement projects that save energy

SC TR AVE LS

MAY 2018

ANNUAL SUBSCRIPTIONS:

14

Updates from your cooperative

Travis Ward

Tigers at the beach SC RECIPE

Diner favorites

I LLUSTR ATIO N BY DAV I D C L A RK ; TIG ER PH OTO BY M AT T S I LFER; SOUTH O F PE A R L PH OTO BY J EFF SM ITH

Smart energy upgrades can pay big dividends in the form of a more comfortable home and lower energy bills. Illustration by David Clark.


SC | agenda The energy to inspire learning WHEN YOU WANT TO PUT A LITTLE ENERGY INTO EDUCATION,

Home energy storage

Batteries power our smartphones, laptops and other portable ­electronics—and soon, they may help power homes and businesses as well. Known as behind-the-meter (BTM) energy storage, these batteries are placed in homes and businesses to provide backup power during outages or periods of high electricity demand. BTM storage is widely viewed as a growth industry, with one recent

TES L A

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BACKUP POWER Tesla CEO Elon Musk introduced the Powerwall BTM storage system in 2015. According to tesla.com/powerwall, a basic system costs about $6,600, with installation costs ranging from $800 to $2,000.

SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING  |  MAY 2018 | SCLIVING.COOP

M I LTON MORRIS

inspiring teachers can’t hurt. That’s why electric cooperatives across South Carolina and the nation are involved in continuing education programs. “Co-ops have a lengthy history of local educational programs, of connecting and partnering with their local schools and districts,” says Lindsey Smith, vice president for education at The Electric Cooperatives of South Carolina. Smith helps guide EnlightenSC, a coordinated, statewide program promoting science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) learning for students. The initiative provides classroom resources, instructional support and continuing education opportunities for teachers. Since 2013, more than 100 South Carolina teachers have completed the program’s four-week summer graduate-credit course, sponsored and underwritten by electric co-ops. “Through EnlightenSC, teachers are introducing a new generation of young people to electric cooperatives,” says Smith. “That’s making it easier for teachers to stage STEM activities in the classroom and present more balanced lessons about energy.” The South Carolina program is one of several offered around the country that provides continuing education opportunities for classroom teachers. Education programs supported by electric co-ops have the potential of touching nearly 7 million schoolaged students in the 47 states served by electric cooperatives.

In the Energy House competition of the 4-H Engineering Challenge, sponsored by EnlightenSC and South Carolina’s consumer-owned electric cooperatives, students design and build a model of an energy-efficient house.

South Carolina classroom teachers can download lesson plans, learn about STEM competitions for students (including the annual 4-H Engineering Challenge) and register for educational opportunities, including this summer’s free graduate class, at EnlightenSC.org. “We need bright young people in our state working to find solutions to our energy challenges,” says Smith. “Consumerowned electric cooperatives are committed to education and making a difference in their communities.” —DERRILL HOLLY

report listing more than 40 companies active in this area. Analysts currently expect BTM storage to make up more than 50 percent of the energy-storage market by 2021. BTM storage will grow in popularity as battery costs fall. Manufacturers are ramping up production to meet the needs of electric vehicles and becoming more efficient in the process. Tesla, for example, is building a large-scale battery factory and introduced its Powerwall residential battery system in 2015. Numerous other companies are active in this space, including LG Chem, Sonnen, Sunverge

Energy and Stem. This increase in competition and manufacturing capacity is driving down the cost of BTM energy storage. Another factor driving interest in BTM storage is the continuous improvement in battery technology. Batteries are becoming more energy dense, meaning they hold more energy in the same size battery. Charging times are decreasing, while battery-cycle life (how many times you can discharge and recharge a battery) is increasing. However, these changes have been largely incremental, and many are still hoping for radical improvement in battery technology. —THOMAS KIRK


ONLY ON SCLiving.coop

Hot wheels While reading my March 2018 issue of South Carolina Living, I was delighted to see Barrie Clark’s letter about his Ecto-1 Ghostbusters replica (a response to the January 2018 profile of Dr. Phillip Latham and his replica Batmobiles). I, too, have a TV car, except mine is an original vehicle used to film the 1966 Green Hornet show. It’s called the Black Beauty and is one of two cars made for the production. Back in the early 1990s, the other Black Beauty was restored and put on display at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles. I remembered hearing about a second car, which I tracked down and found in Sturgis, Michigan. It was owned by Ms. Opal Wall, a true car lady. She had purchased the car 10 years prior to my call and, for the most part, kept it in storage. I purchased the car from her in June 2001 and began an 8-year restoration process to bring it back to its original TV appearance. The car now resides in the Upstate of South Carolina. While displaying it at car shows, I became good friends with Hollywood customizer Dean Jeffries and the original Green Hornet himself, actor Van Williams. Your readers can find the full history of the car at ­theblackbeauty.com. KARL KIRCHNER, BROAD RIVER ELECTRIC COOPERATIVE MEMBER

J I LL L A N G / iSTOCKPH OTO

K A R L KI RCH N ER

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

WHAT NOT TO PLANT IN YOUR YARD Invasive plants like cogongrass and Bradford pears (shown above) might look pretty, but they are the Godzillas of the plant world, destroying native plant populations. Learn how to stop the spread in your landscape, courtesy of this web extra from Clemson Extension at SCLiving.coop/invasive.

Whip up dessert A fluffy meringue topping is the perfect way to finish a lemon, banana or any other favorite pie. Chef Belinda Smith-Sullivan shows you how it’s done in her latest how-to video at SCLiving.coop/ food/chefbelinda.

Make Mom’s day! Sign up today for our Reader Reply Travel Sweepstakes and your chance to win a $100 Visa gift card. We’ll draw the name of one lucky reader from all entries received by May 31. You can use the extra spending cash to treat Mom to a special day out and a bouquet of flowers. She deserves it. Register online today at SCLiving.coop/reader-reply.

GONE FISHIN’ The Vektor Fish & Game Forecast provides feeding and migration times. Major periods can bracket the peak by an hour. Minor peaks, ½ hour before and after. PM Major

Minor

1:22 6:37 9:07 1:37 2:07 7:07 9:52 2:22 3:07 7:37 11:07 3:22 4:07 8:22 12:07 4:22 5:37 9:22 — 5:22 11:07 1:22 — 6:37 8:52 2:22 1:37 7:52 9:37 3:07 3:22 9:07 3:37 10:22 4:22 9:52 4:07 10:52 10:37 5:22 4:37 11:22 11:22 6:07 — 4:52 6:52 12:07 — 5:22 7:37 12:37 — 5:52 8:07 1:07 1:07 6:07 8:52 1:37 1:37 6:37 9:37 2:07

1 2:22 2 3:07 3 4:07 4 5:37 5 9:37 6 8:37 7 9:07 8 2:37 9 3:07 10 3:37 11 4:22 12 — 13 — 14 1:22 15 2:07 16 2:52

Minor

AM Major

Minor

M AY 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31

AM Major

Minor

PM Major

JUNE 6:52 7:22 7:52 8:22 12:52 1:37 2:07 9:37 10:07 10:52 11:22 4:52 5:37 6:22 6:52 7:37

10:22 2:37 11:07 3:07 12:07 3:52 — 4:22 — 5:22 12:22 6:22 2:37 7:52 3:52 8:52 10:07 4:52 10:52 5:52 11:52 6:37 7:22 12:07 8:07 12:52 8:52 1:37 9:52 2:22 10:37 3:07

When streaming online content, use the smallest device that makes sense for the number of people watching. Avoid streaming on game consoles, which use 10 times more power than streaming through a tablet or laptop. SOURCE: ENERGY.GOV

SCLIVING.COOP  | MAY 2018  |  SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING

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|

SC   agenda HIGHLIGHTS MAY 15–JUNE 15

GREENVILLE GREEK FESTIVAL MAY 17–20

Immerse yourself in Greek culture during the four-day celebration of life that is the Greenville Greek Festival. Hosted by Saint George Greek Orthodox Cathedral, this popular Upstate festival is known for authentic food, traditional music and nonstop dancing, as well as tours showcasing the Byzantine architecture and iconic religious art of the sanctuary.

ORIGINAL GULLAH FESTIVAL MAY 25–27

(864) 233-8531; greekforaday.com BATTLE OF CAMDEN BBQ FESTIVAL MAY 18–19

Come hungry if you want to declare victory at the Battle of Camden BBQ Festival. Sample the artistry of some of the Southeast’s top pit masters as they go head-to-head in this South Carolina Barbeque Association event at Historic Camden Revolutionary War Site. Also on the docket for your belly’s delight: a mac ‘n’ cheese competition judged by attendees and a chicken wing-eating contest. (803) 432-4391; camdenjaycees.org/news

Beaufort’s Original Gullah Festival is a family-friendly showcase of the traditional music, food and arts of enslaved Africans in the Lowcountry. This year’s theme—“Come Home to a Celebration of Reconstruction: The Untold Story”—honors the contributions freed slaves made to South Carolina history and culture after the Civil War. Don’t miss the celebration as it unfolds under the live oaks of Henry C. Chambers Waterfront Park. (843) 321-9288; theoriginalgullahfestival.org

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SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING  |  MAY 2018 | SCLIVING.COOP


ADVE RTISE M E NT ADVERTISEMENT

A zero tolerance for litter When it comes to litter control, education influences behavior. We all have a personal responsibility for litter control. It sounds easy to simply not litter, but the message must go further. Educate yourself and others on the effects of litter and the impacts it can make on your community. It costs an estimated $11 billion annually to clean up litter in our state. When individuals carelessly toss debris on our roadways, it is an assault on our environment. When items are not secured properly and end up blowing down the street or landing in a lane, it becomes someone else’s burden to pick them up. What can you do to practice Zero Tolerance for Litter?

[81% of littering is the result of individual intent] Enforcement makes a difference. Focus groups have identified law enforcement as the No. 1 motivator to change behavior. The month of April was our state’s Zero Tolerance for Litter Campaign, hosted by the South Carolina Litter Control Association and PalmettoPride. The mission was two-fold: to encourage all law

enforcement officers to take the crime of littering seriously, and to educate citizens on state and local litter laws.

[36% of business development officials say litter impacts a decision to locate to a community] Business owners and local governments can make it easier for employees to practice Zero Tolerance for Litter. Ensure trash cans, ash receptacles and recycling containers are conveniently available and used properly. Implement a no tolerance policy for employees who litter. Adopt the area around your buildings and engage employees to participate in routine cleanups.

waste management companies—we look to you to set an example for your industry and hold each other accountable. The easiest way to practice Zero Tolerance for Litter is to simply not litter. Check your vehicle for loose papers that can fly out of a window or open door. If you eat in your car, place trash in the take-out bag and throw it away at your next stop. Take simple steps to help us make big strides in the future.

[20% of all roadway litter comes from unsecured loads] If you transport items in the back of your truck or drive with your windows down, secure everything properly so nothing flies out while you’re driving. Professional drivers, transport companies and solid

For more information on litter enforcement, visit PalmettoPride’s website at www.palmettopride.org or call 877.PAL.PRDE.


|

SC   dialogue

Even shepherds need a break

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SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING  |  MAY 2018 | SCLIVING.COOP

that serve their communities by providing places of prayer, learning and hospitality. For visitors, time at the monastery is a rare and refreshing experience. The beauty of the property, with its ancient oaks hung with Spanish moss and its uniquely quiet and peaceful atmosphere, allows for rest and restoration like few places in our busy modern lives. The abbey’s retreat center allows the monks to extend hospitality to anyone who needs it. And for a caregiver who spends every day tending to the needs of others, even a brief time at the abbey is life-giving. This past fall, Father Guerric and a team of dedicated facilitators organized a retreat designed especially for caregivers. The team, which included experts from the fields of medicine, end-of-life care, meditation and mindfulness, carefully planned the retreat to nourish and refresh those caregiving shepherds who spend their days tending to others. The retreat guests came from all walks of life, caring for loved ones of all ages and stages. Many hadn’t taken an overnight break in years, and each one of them needed rest and restoration. The retreat not only provided them with that necessary respite, it also renewed their commitment to continue in their roles as caregivers while under­standing the need to care for themselves as well. Retreat guests discovered the value of taking even a brief time away from the demands of caregiving. They were reminded to carve out time for activities they enjoy, like reading, gardening or just taking a walk—and that taking time to recharge and reconnect ultimately allows them to care more effectively for their loved ones. Father Guerric and the team have more care­givers’ retreats planned for 2018. For more information, visit bookwhen.com/mepkinabbey, or call the retreat center at (843) 761-8509. M IC SM ITH

GO TO ANY HOSPITAL CAFETERIA and you will spot them. They usually sit by themselves. Crow’s feet, etched by lack of sleep, web out from their eyes. Worry lines furrow their foreheads. They slowly sip cups of coffee or soft drinks. They in­variably try to work the worry out of their stiff necks. Who are they? Parents of sick children or ­children of sick parents seeking a 15-minute recharge of their physical, emotional and spiritual batteries before they return to being Retreats at a caregiver in a bleak, small hospital the peaceful room. Oftentimes, a friend’s visit Mepkin Abbey give caregivers is their only opportunity to clear a chance to their minds or stretch their legs. Just recharge. enough “time off” to keep them going. Or, is it? Caregivers are not only meeting the physical needs of ailing loved ones, but their emotional needs as well. They listen and provide support while also feeding, cleaning and tending to medical issues. It’s a commitment to family that requires pouring oneself out daily. While the love and compassion needed for this kind of work may be abundant, the physical and emotional stamina required often pushes caregivers to the brink of exhaustion. Too much time without coming up for air can lead to burnout, depression and health problems. The work of caregivers is critically important—not just to their loved ones, but in ways that alter the fabric of our communities as well. According to a study by AARP, 40 million family caregivers provide 37 billion hours of care for parents, spouses, partners and other adult loved ones each year. If you could put a price tag on it, this volunteer labor is worth an estimated $470 billion annually. Father Guerric Heckel of Mepkin Abbey under­stands firsthand the needs of caregivers. Throughout his 50 years in the priesthood, he has served many roles, including infirmarian, caring for sick and elderly monks. He has a broad range of experience that includes hospital chaplaincy, and he serves as the director of the St. Francis Retreat Center and the Contemplative Aging Institute. Located on the Cooper River in Berkeley County, just outside Moncks Corner, Mepkin Abbey was established in 1949 as part of a global network of Trappist monasteries

President and CEO, The Electric Cooperatives of South Carolina MIKE COUICK


EMPOWERING VISION With our low-cost, reliable electricity and choice industrial sites, Santee Cooper is working with the South Carolina Power Team to help new businesses picture a better future – and to power South Carolina toward Brighter Tomorrows, Today.

www.scpowerteam.com • www.poweringsc.com


|

SC   smart choice

Marvelous Mom May brings flowers, and you should give them to your mother. She deserves them—and at least one of these mama-perfect gifts.  BY JAYNE CANNON

POCKET SPROCKET

Mom takes a lot of great photos. But somehow, they never get printed. Give her the gift of memories with an HP Sprocket 2-in-1 Smartphone Printer and Instant Camera. The Sprocket connects via Bluetooth and is about the size of a smartphone, so it tucks right into a pocket or purse. $160. (877) 203‑5578; hp.com.

HOUSEHOLD HELPER

Every mother can use a little help. Introduce yours to Google Home Mini, her new best friend. This little round disc can tell her the weather forecast, answer questions, deliver the news, remind her of appointments and turn off the lights. You may be replaced. $49. google.com.

PACK UP AND AWAY

Ever tried to snag a charging spot at the airport? It’s not an issue with an Away Carry-On, the suitcase with the built-in charger. Tough traveler? No problem— this bag is unbreakable and guaranteed for life. And it comes in an array of fun colors. $225. (888) 428‑2118; awaytravel.com.

THE SEARCH IS OVER

It’s one of those days. You need a pen, but finding a needle in a haystack might be easier. The Handbag Illuminator with Charging Power steps in to save the day. It lights the inside of a bag, so you can find what you need, and it charges your phone, too. Mom will love you for this one. $36. (888) 365‑0056; uncommongoods.com. WINE DOWN

DRY IN STYLE

She’s a mom like no other, so she deserves a hair dryer like no other. That’s the Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer. The digital motor is in the handle, resulting in a better-balanced, easier-to-hold dryer. And, it’s stylish and pretty, just like Mom. $400. (888) 237‑8289; bestbuy.com. 12

SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING  |  MAY 2018 | SCLIVING.COOP

Mom’s had a stressful day, and a glass of wine might just hit the spot. The last thing she needs is to struggle with a stubborn cork. Make it easy on her with the Pampered Chef Electric Wine Bottle Opener. A single button opens the bottle with ease, and the opener’s stand doubles as a foil cutter. $50. (800) 462‑3966; pamperedchef.com.


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“Many phones have features that are rarely needed and hard to use!” The Jitterbug Flip contains easy-to-use features that are meaningful to you. A built-in camera makes it easy and fun for you to capture and share your favorite memories. And a flashlight with a built-in magnifier helps you see in dimly lit areas. The Jitterbug Flip has all the features you need. Enough talk. Isn’t it time you found out more about the cell phone that’s changing all the rules? Call now! Jitterbug product experts are standing by.

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IMPORTANT CONSUMER INFORMATION: Jitterbug is owned by GreatCall, Inc. Your invoices will come from GreatCall. 125% off device applies only to MSRP of $99.99 and is only valid for new customers or new lines of service. Sale price in stores may vary. This promotional discount does not apply to prices below MSRP. Offer valid 4/22/18 through 6/30/18. 2Monthly fees do not include government taxes or assessment surcharges and are subject to change. Plans and services may require purchase of a GreatCall device and a one-time setup fee of $35. 5Star or 9-1-1 calls can be made only when cellular service is available. 5Star Service tracks an approximate location of the device when the device is turned on and connected to the network. GreatCall does not guarantee an exact location. When calling from the domestic U.S. to other countries, additional international calling rates will apply. 3We will refund the full price of the Jitterbug phone and activation fee, if any, if it is returned within 30 days of purchase in like-new condition. We will also refund your first monthly service charge if you have used less than 30 minutes of talk and less than 50 text messages. Per minute and per text charges otherwise apply. You will be charged a $10 restocking fee. Shipping charges are not refundable. Full terms at www.greatcall.com/legal/guarantee. There are no additional fees to call GreatCall’s U.S.-based customer service. However, for calls to a GreatCall Operator in which a service is completed, you will be charged $0.99/call, and plan minutes will be deducted equal to the length of the call. The $ 0.99/call Personal Operator fee is waived with Ultimate Health & Safety Packages. Car charger will be mailed to customer after the device is activated. Jitterbug, GreatCall and 5Star are registered trademarks of GreatCall, Inc. Copyright ©2018 GreatCall, Inc. ©2018 firstSTREET for Boomers and Beyond, Inc.


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SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING  |  MAY 2018 | SCLIVING.COOP


Energy upgrades for a

happier home Boost your home’s comfort and cut energy use on your next home improvement project BY DIANE VETO PARHAM | ILLUSTRATIONS BY DAVID CLARK

Imagine your house is not just the place you sleep, eat and store your stuff, but more like a part of your family, with its own unique needs. Ignore those needs, and both you and your home suffer the consequences. Pay closer attention to its behaviors, and you can find ways to enjoy a more pleasant—and efficient—living environment. “People have a sense of whether their home is functioning well or not,” says Mike Smith, efficiency expert with The Electric Cooperatives of South Carolina. By choosing the right energy-­ efficient updates for your home, he says, “you’ll save money, you’ll be more comfortable and you’ll be healthier.” Need some ideas to get started? Here are seven smart ways to invest in a comfortable and energy-efficient house.

SCLIVING.COOP  | MAY 2018  |  SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING

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ENERGY UPGRADES

Get a professional home energy audit Cost: About $250–$650. Benefit: Making recommended improvements can cut energy use by 10 to 40 percent. DIY potential: None; hire a certified professional.

The first step—and the best investment—in any home improvement project is a professional energy audit. “What an auditor can do is give you direction for what it would take to fix your home—a list of recommendations, prioritized,” Smith says. “If you do them, you’ll save energy.” A whole-house energy audit will take a few hours and measure household energy use, how the heating and air system is functioning and whether there’s adequate insulation. Using diagnostic tools like a blower door and a thermal imaging camera, an auditor tests for leaks in ductwork and around windows and doors, plus other problems with the home’s “envelope”—essentially, the parts of the house that separate its insulated, air-conditioned interior from unconditioned spaces like attics and crawl spaces. According to the Building Performance Institute, a nationwide nonprofit that certifies residential energy auditors, the report you get back—up to 20 pages of details—can include estimates of what return you might expect on any investments in efficiency upgrades. “It’s worth paying an expert to get the right direction, because you could spend thousands of dollars chasing symptoms and not get any return,” Smith says. Need help finding a professional? Ask your electric cooperative for recommended energy auditors, or visit the Building Performance Institute website for homeowners (bpihomeowner.org).

Seal your house Cost: Ranges from a few dollars for weather stripping and caulk to thousands of dollars for whole-house weatherization. Benefit: Annual energy savings of 10 to 20 percent, ­according to the U.S. Department of Energy. DIY potential: Homeowners can do simple tasks; professionals should handle large-scale items like ductwork improvements.

You’re paying to heat and cool your home. You can minimize costs and maximize comfort by keeping that conditioned air indoors, where you want it. “Make sure your house is well-insulated and well-sealed,” says Alan Shedd, director of energy solutions for Touchstone Energy Cooperatives. “Don’t go install a fancy heating system or pile on a bunch of insulation in a house that’s Swiss cheese.” Most houses leak 10 percent or more of their conditioned air into attics and crawl spaces. “That’s very, very common— the older the home, the more leakages you’re going to have,” says Rea Bolin, a certified energy auditor with B&B Heating and Cooling in North. A handy do-it-yourselfer can tackle simple sealing tasks. Feel for drafts or look for cracks and gaps around windows and doors; electrical outlets and light fixtures; where pipes and wires penetrate walls, floors or ceilings; fireplaces; and where ceilings meet walls. Basic DIY materials like weatherstripping tape, tubes of caulk and spray foam are available at home improvement stores. If you invest in a professional home energy audit, you will know exactly where air is leaking and what repairs are needed. For fixes outside your skill set—adding insulation or repairing leaky ductwork, for example—ask your co-op for a list of certified contractors or visit BPI’s website.


Replace your HVAC system Cost: Ranges from a few thousand dollars for a singlezone, mini-split system, or tens of thousands to install a geothermal system. Benefit: Upgrading to Energy Star-certified heating and cooling equipment can deliver annual energy-bill savings of 10 to 30 percent, according to the Department of Energy; geothermal systems can cut energy use for heating and cooling by 25 to 50 percent. DIY potential: You’ll need a trained professional who can properly size and install a system for your needs.

Heating and cooling account for about half of typical household energy costs. You can minimize those expenses by properly maintaining your existing HVAC systems and by upgrading to more efficient options when your current unit ages out. Expect an HVAC system to last, on average, about 10 to 12 years. “Any time after 12 years, it’s a gift,” Smith says. “If you have a 30-year-old system, it’s time! It’s not being very efficient if it’s 30 years old.” Air-source heat pumps are popular in South Carolina for efficient, year-round heating and cooling provided by a single unit. The newest variation—highly efficient ductless systems known as mini-split heat pumps—can be placed where needed in a home. Multi-zone mini-splits allow placement of units around the house, so different rooms can be set to their own comfort levels, says Rick Nortz, manager of utility and efficiency programs for Mitsubishi Electric Cooling and Heating. “That room becomes its own home, with its own thermostat,” he says. And because there are no ducts, there’s no energy lost through leaky ductwork. Ground-source (geothermal) heat pumps are the most efficient, albeit more expensive, heating and cooling option. Drawing heat from stable ground temperatures rather than fluctuating air temperatures, geothermal heat pumps use about 25 to 50 percent less electricity than conventional HVAC systems. Geothermal is “the gold standard” for peak efficiency in heating and cooling, Shedd says, if your property can accommodate an extensive vertical or horizontal underground-loop system.

Looke for th l labe It’s hard to miss those big, yellow EnergyGuide labels stuck on the sides of new refrigerators, heating and cooling systems, water heaters and many other major home appliances. “The yellow label is one of the greatest things there is, if you’re concerned about energy costs,” says Brian Sloboda of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. “It tells you approximately how much energy one product will use compared to the product next to it, so you can narrow your search to the two or three models with the lowest numbers, then choose based on the features you want.” Keep in mind, label numbers are estimates. Actual costs will be determined by how your household uses the appliance and your local utility rates. Be sure to compare apples to apples. The upper left of each label indicates the type of product (e.g., refrigerator) and some of its key features. If you’re looking at models with significantly different features, you won’t get a true comparison from the energy-use estimates on their labels. Likewise, the estimated yearly operating cost shows a range of how a particular model compares only to similar products. And, don’t forget to look for the Energy Star logo. You may see it on an appliance’s EnergyGuide label, on a product itself or on product packaging. “It’s kind of on everything these days, because manufacturers have seen that people appreciate it—it’s become one of the most trusted logos in the United States,” Sloboda says. Energy Star-certified products have met specific Environmental Protection Agency product standards for energy efficiency. Products that carry Energy Star’s “Most Efficient” label are the best of the best, often incorporating innovative new features to maximize energy savings.

Learn more about the EnergyGuide and Energy Star labels at energystar.gov.

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Modernize or unplug appliances Cost: Hundreds of dollars to modernize major appliances; zero dollars for unplugging energy hogs that are not in use. Benefit: Save anywhere from a few dollars up to hundreds of dollars a year. DIY potential: You’ll need a professional to install some appliances, but you can unplug small appliances around the house in minutes.

Among your appliances, the two biggest energy users are water heaters and refrigerators, which are nearly always on duty. After that, you might be surprised by another energy hog: consumer electronics. “The fastest-growing user of electricity in your house is all the things you plug in,” Shedd says. Think about all the electronic devices plugged into your outlets—many with lights that glow even when the device is not being used—drawing small-but-steady “vampire loads” of energy and adding to your power bill, such as the coffee maker, toaster, phone charger, computer charger, printer, TV, cable box, DVD player and video game console. A quick walk through the house, unplugging as you go, can save you a few bucks a year on items that only need power when you’re using them. Water heaters, which keep hot water at the ready for kitchens and bathrooms, are the major household energy users after heating and air systems. Saving money here depends on finding the right unit for your home and climate. New efficiency standards instituted for residential water heaters in 2015 ended the use of large-capacity electric-resistance units (over 55 gallons) in homes. An exception was made for gridenabled water heaters, Shedd says, so that homeowners could buy larger heaters to participate in utility load-control programs. To see if such a program is available in your area, check with your electric cooperative. Other upgrade options include heat-pump water heaters, which are highly efficient but work best in conditioned spaces. They tend to be physically larger, so they may not fit in your existing water heater’s space. Another option to replace a high-capacity water heater is to buy two smaller water heaters, perhaps even installing them closer to where they are needed, he says. The most important consideration is to plan ahead. “Most times, when a water heater fails, it’s an emergency,” Shedd says. “Nobody wants to be without hot water, so they put in whatever’s on the truck. If you want to upgrade to something more efficient, decide ahead of time.” Refrigerators are dramatically more efficient than they 18

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were two decades ago, Shedd says. More than a third of American refrigerators in use are over 10 years old, according to the EPA’s Energy Star program. Newer models—especially those with the Energy Star label—use less energy and add less to your household power bill. The Energy Star website (energystar.gov) has a savings calculator that will estimate how much money you can save by upgrading. In South Carolina, installing an Energy Star-certified fridge to replace that freezer-on-top model you’ve had for 18 years can save you nearly $127 a year. By the way, that old fridge is still costing you money if you park it in the garage and plug it in there. Recycle it to reduce energy use. Televisions, washing machines and dishwashers are all more efficient these days. Age can be your gauge; for appliances more than 10 years old, newer models will use less energy. “The Department of Energy’s new appliance standards for energy have impacted most of the stuff you buy,” says Brian Sloboda, program manager for the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. “It’s really tough to buy something that’s not energy efficient these days.”

Boost your attic insulation Cost: S.C. averages range from about $700 to $2,500, depending on home location, attic size and type of insulation. Benefit: Reduce your energy bills by keeping heated and cooled air in your living space. DIY potential: This is a job for professionals, who have the equipment and skills to install insulation properly to meet efficiency standards.

Most homes have insulation. But maybe not enough. It’s all about the R-value. That’s the number assigned to insulating materials based on how well they resist the transfer of heat. Higher numbers mean more resistance to heat flow and more effective insulation. When it comes to attics, the recommended R-values range from 30 in warmer climates to 60 in colder regions. For South Carolina, R-30 is the minimum required by the state building code, but R-38 will deliver a boost in energy efficiency for a modest investment. Older homes usually lack enough attic insulation for peak


efficiency, because “energy efficiency standards keep going up,” Shedd says. “Thirty years ago, R-19 was standard practice.” Bringing your attic’s insulation in line with the recommended R-value for your location starts with the insulating materials. The R-value, marked on insulation packaging, depends on the type of insulation—for example, fiberglass or cellulose, batts or loose fill—as well as the thickness and density of the materials. For maximum effectiveness, it must be installed correctly and to the proper depth. While you’re at it, don’t forget to cover and seal your attic access door. Upgrade kits, made of polystyrene with R-values between R-20 and R-38, can be purchased at your local hardware store and installed in a few hours.

What’s in your attic? A peek in most attics will reveal the tried-and-true materials commonly used to insulate homes: fiberglass, cellulose, mineral wool or spray-foam insulation. Regardless of type, the keys to effective insulation are the same—getting the right R-value for your home’s insulation, proper installation and air sealing. FIBERGLASS: This is the insulation that looks like cotton candy, commonly seen in long strips—called batts or rolls—between wall studs and ceiling joists. It might be pink, white or yellow, and it also comes in a loose-fill form, often blown into attic spaces. Made of tiny glass fibers, it can be uncomfortable to touch; wear gloves and a mask while handling it. CELLULOSE: Grayish in color, cellulose is a loose-fill insulation that can be blown in between attic joists. It is chemically treated to be resistant to moisture, fire, insects and nesting rodents. Over time, it can settle, reducing its insulation value and requiring an additional layer to bring it back to the recommended R-value for your home.

Switch to efficient lightbulbs Cost: A few dollars per bulb. Benefit: Save about $50 per year by replacing 15 traditional incandescent bulbs with more efficient energy-saving lightbulbs. DIY potential: You can handle this.

SPRAY-IN FOAM: More expensive than other types of insulation, spray-in foam is becoming a more common choice because it provides more insulation and better air sealing, Touchstone Energy’s Alan Shedd says. Sprayed on the interior of your roof, it wraps the attic into your home’s envelope. If your HVAC unit is in the attic, it’s going to operate more efficiently in that more temperate environment. “It’s more expensive than blowing in another six inches of fiberglass or cellulose, but it’s certainly worth getting prices,” Shedd says. “For new construction, it’s a no-brainer.”

FRO M TO P : OW ENS CO RN I NG; W E ATH ERS H I E LD; LIG HTKEEPER / DEPOS ITPH OTOS; BA S F

You’re going to change your lightbulbs sooner or later. When you do, why not invest in bulbs that will save energy and create the lighting environment you want in your home? Since the adoption of new U.S. lighting standards in 2012, manufacturers have replaced traditional incandescent bulbs with efficient options that use 25 to 80 percent less energy. Halogen bulbs look pretty much like the old-style incandescents; they’re usually the cheapest options, they’re available in different shapes and colors, and they work with dimmer switches. But they’re also the least energy efficient, and they won’t last as long as CFLs (compact fluorescent bulbs) and LEDs (light-emitting diode bulbs). LEDs are the most efficient option. They can last 15 to 20

MINERAL WOOL: Like fiberglass, this comes in batts, rolls or loose-fill forms. It’s made from natural and recycled materials and often appears greenish-brown in color.

If you’re climbing up to look at what you’ve got, be sure to protect yourself. Bring a flashlight so you can check your insulation in every nook and cranny and also where you are stepping. Only walk where you are sure of secure footing, so you don’t drop through the ceiling below. Wear gloves, eye protection and a dust mask if you’ll be handling any insulation. Limit your time up there if temperatures are very hot or cold.

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ENERGY UPGRADES

years, and their prices have been dropping, making them more affordable. They also work well with many newer dimmer switches. When you’re shopping, pay attention to lumens—the brightness of the bulb—rather than watts, which indicate how much energy it uses. Packaging often refers to the wattage a new bulb can replace—for example, an energy-saving 800lumen bulb can replace a 60-watt bulb. Look at the lighting-facts label for details about the bulb’s lumens, estimated yearly energy cost and lifespan, and the lighting color. Energy Star-certified bulbs can deliver the brightness you want while using 70 to 90 percent less energy.

s ’ r e p p A sho to heat guideumps p

Baffled by the alphabet soup that greets you when you start looking at heat pumps? If an HVAC contractor starts spouting numbers for SEER, EER, HSPF and COP, just remember those terms are a handy shorthand for comparing the efficiency of one heat pump to another. A higher number indicates a more efficient system. That can save you money in energy costs over the life of the unit, but you may have to pay more for it up front. SEER: Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. This rates the cooling efficiency of an air-source heat pump. To earn Energy Star certification, heat pumps must have a SEER of at least 15; mini-split SEER ratings can be in the 30s. You can buy less expensive, traditional models with a SEER of 13, says Brian Sloboda of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. “The good news is, if you have an older unit, it’s probably below that, so the lowest amount you spend on a new unit will still save you money,” he says. EER: Energy Efficiency Ratio. It’s not tied to seasonal performance, but it is a measure of cooling performance. You’ll find this on geothermal (ground-source) heat pumps, usually rated 18 and up. HSPF: Heating Seasonal Performance Factor. The flip side of SEER, this rates an air-source heat pump’s heating efficiency. Look for a rating of 8.2 or above for Energy Starcertified models. COP: Coefficient of Performance. If you’re shopping for geothermal systems, watch for this measure of heating efficiency, and aim for a rating of 3.6 or higher for more efficient models.

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Install smart thermostats Cost: Products range from about $135 to $250. Benefit: Manufacturers estimate annual savings of 9 to 23 percent on heating and cooling costs; your savings may vary. DIY potential: Video and written instructions can guide you through installation and Wi-Fi set-up.

Early versions of programmable thermostats were hailed as tools that would help homeowners save energy and money and increase home comfort, all by tailoring daily settings to daytime, nighttime, weekend and vacation schedules. And they did—but only for those who bothered to manually program them. “Those first ones were maybe an engineer’s dream, but everybody else was like, ‘It’s confusing, I don’t understand how to use it, I have to adjust it ...,’ ” Smith says. “We don’t want to interact with our thermostats any more than we have to.” Enter the newer smart thermostats. They connect to the internet, can be controlled from an app on a mobile device, and, best of all, are designed to learn your home’s habits. Some newer models include sensors to detect when people are in the house; others offer multiple sensors to tailor temperatures to different rooms. And some feature Amazon’s Alexa voice-activated virtual assistant, which can control an array of smart-home devices in addition to the thermostat. Even your security system can interface with your thermostat. “The latest smart thermostats offer greater convenience and the ability to capture information,” Smith says. “Homeowners have access to the data they need to manage their energy use for maximum comfort and savings.”


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Smart moves

Kira Adkins AGE:

17.

To be a Doctor of Pharmacy by age 21. Goose Creek native—moved to North Charleston with her family before ninth grade to attend Academic Magnet High School. SPIRITUAL HOME: Canaan Missionary Baptist Church, where her great-grandfather serves as pastor and many family members belong. WHEN SHE’S NOT STUDYING: Enjoys crossword puzzles and Waffle House visits with friends. INSPIRATION: Her mom, Sherlonda Adkins, who became a physician’s assistant after graduating from MUSC in 2014. LIFE AMBITION: HOMETOWN:

Kira Adkins has always worked ahead. She started kindergarten a year early after wowing the school director with her reading abilities. Now, as the 17-year-old graduates from high school, she leapfrogs to Medical University of South Carolina, where she will be the youngest Pharm.D. student in the school’s history. The news surprised her classmates at Academic Magnet High School in North Charleston, where she met every challenge of a rigorous academic program and played on the varsity basketball team—all while quietly completing her pharmacy school prereqs through night and summer classes at Trident Technical College. Only a few friends knew of her plan to skip the usual undergrad experience. Her interest in pharmacy was piqued during middle school by SCRUBS career programs at a local hospital, where she remembers packaging Skittles candy like medicine and a fascination for the pharmacy carousel. For her thesis project at Academic Magnet, she lobbied law enforcement officials in four counties to provide community drop boxes for leftover medications as part of a drugabuse prevention program. She’s fueled by an excitement for her future profession, in which “there’s always so much to learn.” And while her power move to MUSC requires a unique maturity, she has always made time for friends and fun. Commencement will be “bittersweet,” she admits. “I’m not sure I’m ready to say goodbye to these people, but at the same time, I’m ready to graduate and start the next chapter of my life.” Just expect her to turn the pages faster than most. —SUSAN HILL SMITH, PHOTO BY MIC SMITH

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NICE KITTY All 12-feet-worth of liger Sinbad reaches for a snack from a trainer.

Take a mind-bending wildlife safari—no passport required BY JAN A. IGOE

Laugh it up, Bubbles.


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LEF T: COU RTESY O F M Y RTLEB E ACHSA FA RI .CO M

that the world’s biggest cat—a hybrid cub of a lion and tigress—resides in Myrtle Beach. It’s another to witness the massive 920-pound golden carnivore rising 12 feet upward on his hind legs to nibble a meaty morsel dangled by a petite trainer who serves the snack from a hunting stand as casually as a waitress delivering pancakes at IHOP. On a scorching June morning when any sane soul would be chilling at a water park, dozens of animal-loving ­tourists and locals are opting for Myrtle Beach’s only safari tour. Just minutes off the main drag, tucked past rows of clear-cut mobile home parks, The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species, aka T.I.G.E.R.S., occupies 50 Eden-esque acres as South Carolina’s premier wildlife preserve for more than 130 animals, including 60 big cats. If an African safari is on your bucket list, why wait? This one doesn’t require 80,000 ­frequent flyer miles and a passport. Founder Mahamayavi Bhagavan Kevin Antle, who goes by the refreshingly brief name “Doc,” opened the compound— his private residence—more than 30 years ago to share his passion for endangered species and subsidize conservation projects all over the world. By 8:30 a.m., sweaty tiger-seekers are already milling around outside the preserve gates. Most are first-timers, eager to see if “the greatest hands-on animal experience in the world” will live up to its billing. Several returning veterans of past tours assure them that it will. The guests have obviously read the rules: No cameras. No flip-flops, dresses, dangly jewelry, backpacks or purses to catch an inquisitive paw. The preserve gates—reminiscent of the curvy bamboo entry that separated villagers from King Kong—part for senior trainer Rob Johnson, our khaki-clad greeter and tour guide, to emerge via golf cart and review a few safety rules, such as leaving our snacks behind. “If you have M&M’s in your pocket, the monkeys will find them,” he assures us.

M AT T S I LFER

It’s one thing to hear

MINE Guests are warned that tiger cubs can be very possessive of their toys.

First the paperwork: “Yes, I understand that these animals are wild, and I will not sue you should I happen to be eaten,” or something like that. Sign here.

Smile for the cameras Minutes later, we are chilling in an air-conditioned lounge with lofty, wood-beamed ceilings, comfy rattan sofas and oversized chairs on which guests eagerly plop to sample a tiny ceramic cup of high-octane java, African-style. The lounge is paneled with awards, photos and TVs showcasing hundreds of films and commercial projects ­starring Antle’s animals. Johnson gives us the inside scoop on stars who have shared the spotlight with baboons, tigers and chimps. Jay Leno would go toe-to-paw with any creature Antle trotted out during his many appearances on The Tonight Show. Jim Carrey could hold his own with baboons as Ace Ventura, but a guinea pig could scare Eddie “Dr. Dolittle” Murphy

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PHOTOS BY M AT T S I LFER

raw meat for a few years while they right off the set, Johnson confides. watch and learn. The squeamish need We are still chomping on morsels not apply. of Hollywood gossip when trainers— Trainer Mari Gent, a statuesque, including a bevy of exotic, youthful beaming brunette who looks more like a women dressed in their safari finest— runway model than a cage cleaner, joined turn our attention to the 30-foot panthe program straight out of high school. oramic windows behind us. There, inches “I told my family I was running away beyond the glass wall, one of the largest with the circus,” she says. They were cats on Earth is out for a stroll. Leashed duly horrified, but have since come and restrained by multiple trainers, around. Sinbad the liger is stalking his midmornWe follow our leaders to a large octaging snack. Ligers are only born in captivity and onal corral to meet some animals still THRILL OF THE CHASE Blink and you’ll miss it. An can grow larger than both their lion small enough to hold. “We’re going to let adult tiger demonstrates its speed and agility. and tigress parents. Sinbad’s brother a bunch of cubs loose, if that’s OK,” Gent Hercules, who weighs 922 pounds, holds says to delighted guests. the 2014 record for largest living cat, as recognized by the Luxuriously soft and cuddly, the baby Bengals spend a Guinness World Records, although Sinbad is actually taller. few seconds on each guest’s lap, closely guarded by handlers The group stops gasping long enough to follow trainready with toys, bottled formula and reassuring belly rubs. “Do not take a tiger’s toy away because you become one,” a ers outside for a photo op with the big boy safely in the trainer cautions. background. Next stop, another record-holder: Ramses the All tigers are born with exquisite blue eyes and are small cheetah. These spotted sprinters are the planet’s fastest land enough to fit in your hand, but they’ll gain up to a pound a animals, blasting after prey at more than 60 mph. Meanwhile, day. There’s a very small window—just a few weeks—when habitat loss has them racing toward extinction just as quickly. Leashed at the neck and hindquarters and purring like a they’re strong enough to visit with safari guests but not yet harmless kitten, Ramses seems to flinch at the slightest movepracticing predators. So we pet them quickly while profesment in our ranks. Cautious trainers distract him from fixatsional photographers click away. ing on any potentially tasty member of the audience.

A wild attention to detail

It’s not a job; it’s a life Successfully working with wild animals to gain their trust takes thousands of hours just to establish a basic bond. If the job appears glamorous, guess again. It’s a 24/7 commitment with no weekends or holidays off. There are no part-time jobs here, only unpaid apprenticeships open to passionate, single vegetarians who are ready to shovel feces and haul

MY, WHAT BIG PAWS YOU HAVE Cuddly Bengal tiger cubs never fail to bring a smile.

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Between stops, guests are treated to appetizers of hummus, pita, fruit and nut bars, mini-smoothies and sips of African tea. Every location is ready for a centerfold in House Beautiful. If the safari crew was hired to clean motel rooms, five-star reviews would be the norm. Antle demands that every habitat remains eat-off-the-floor clean, so his human guests enjoy the same attention to detail. Johnson, who has chased elephants off a Johannesburg runway, dived with sharks and brokered truces between impoverished natives and gorillas on other continents, is also an accomplished falconer. An enormous African eagle with formidable curved talons perches on his leather-covered arm to help Johnson demonstrate the rare art form. We are escorted to expansive balconies to watch an adult tiger chasing a lure like a mild-mannered greyhound. This demonstration of an apex predator’s strength, speed and ferocity occurs nowhere else on earth, they say. Several trainers post themselves at the start and finish lines to coordinate the critically timed demo and reclaim the unrestrained tiger the moment it hits the brakes. Later in the tour, as guests gape from the balconies, Antle makes his dramatic entrance riding Bubbles, a 9,000-pound African elephant he rescued as a motherless baby more than 30 years ago, when her herd was decimated by ivory poachers.


PH OTOS BY M AT T S I LFER

ROUND-THE-CLOCK ADVENTURE For the animal trainers and founder “Doc” Antle (shown above with Bubbles the elephant), the 50-acre wildlife park is also their home. Care and feeding of more than 130 animals, including Ramses the cheetah and Ahren the African fishing eagle, is a 24-hour-a-day commitment.

‘It’s very hard to get people to donate to conservation efforts. We create an opportunity to get up close with uncaged animals to make a personal connection.’ —DOC ANTLE

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t OUT FOR

A SWIM Kody Antle takes a dip with a young tiger cub.

u SMILE

FOR THE CAMERA Bubbles the elephant gladly poses for pictures with visitors.

GET THERE T.I.G.E.R.S. Wild Encounter Tours VIP tours of The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species (T.I.G.E.R.S.) are half-day walking excursions with interactive, hands-on animal experiences for ages 6 and up, and offered several days each week, year-round, starting at $299 per person. Reservations should be made at least two weeks in advance. New for 2018: Night Safari Tours are available from $299–$399, depending on the date. For more information, visit myrtlebeachsafari.com.

T.I.G.E.R.S. Preservation Station Located at Barefoot Landing (4898 South Highway 17, North Myrtle Beach), the Preservation Station is a free alternative for all ages to view tigers and cubs. Optional photo sessions ($100 for the first person and $25 for each additional person) support the Rare Species Fund, which funds conservation efforts around the world. Open most evenings during spring and summer, starting at 6 p.m., weather-permitting. For more information, call (843) 361‑4552 (automated information line) or visit myrtlebeachsafari.com.

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PH OTOS BY M AT T S I LFER

An elephant’s trunk, the most complex organ in the animal kingdom, has 50,000 muscles, Antle tells us while gently stroking her trunk with a bamboo walking stick. To demon­ strate, he presents Bubbles with a watermelon, a ­favorite treat. The same trunk that can delicately grasp a peanut applies more than 300 pounds of crush force to split the watermelon right on cue. Occasionally, Antle has been splattered with juicy pink fruit, but not today. It’s a clean kill. Safari guests descend from their balcony viewpoint to feel the thick, bark-like skin on Bubbles’ trunk and join her for photo ops. Everyone gets to feed her carrots. She’ll eat several hundred pounds of food today, but always has room for the sweet vegetable. The tour concludes back in the lounge, where chimps play beach ball and paint T-shirts with Jackson Pollock flair.

Through a glass partition, we watch Antle’s son, Kody—a reallife jungle boy who never stopped smiling as he presented multiple animals throughout the day—swim playfully with large-clawed tiger pals and Suryia, one of the only orangutans known to swim. These adventures are standard fare for Kody, who grew up with monkeys in his crib. “His sister was an elephant,” his father says. “His love of wild things comes naturally.”

Conservation at its core At 58, Antle’s trademark ponytail and soul patch have turned white, but his eyes are still baby tiger blue. Although he’s spoken with hundreds of reporters and given thousands of tours, he’s still exuberant about his lifelong mission—inspiring guests to be passionate advocates for wildlife protection. Antle says premium tour prices generate profits to underwrite the Rare Species Fund, which helps animals survive clear-cutting and interaction with human neighbors in remote parts of the world. The fund delivers equipment to park rangers who lack the tools to defeat poachers. Antle’s team works directly with the end-user to protect mountain gorillas of Uganda, orangutans of Borneo and jaguars in Brazil, according to their website. While T.I.G.E.R.S. offers an exquisite tropical garden where guests can get up close and interact with wild, majestic creatures, right here in Myrtle Beach, the compound has faced its share of criticism from naysayers and animal-rights activists. Antle seems to take it all in stride. “It’s very hard to get people to donate to conservation efforts,” Antle says. “We create an opportunity to get up close with uncaged animals to make a personal connection. They touch the wild so we can save the wild.”


1

17:45

ONLY

8/8/02

AB

120

YO U C A N P R E V E N T W I L D FI R E S. w w w . s m o k e y b e a r . c o m

Dolev

*569134*

The African American Cultural Center of Camden presents

Camden’s Baseball Hall of Famer: Larry Doby February 24 - August 30, 2018

517 York Street

Hours: Monday, Wednesday, Friday 1:00 to 4:30 Saturday 10:00 to 4:00 For information, call 803-425-6050

SCLIVING.COOP  | MAY 2018  |  SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING

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SC   recipe

SALISBURY STEAK WITH MUSHROOM GRAVY SERVES 4

PATTIES

1 pound ground beef ½ medium onion, finely chopped 1 tablespoon tomato paste 1 teaspoon ground mustard 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce 1 garlic clove, minced ¼ cup seasoned breadcrumbs Kosher salt Freshly ground black pepper 1 tablespoon olive oil

Diner delights

MUSHROOM GRAVY

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided 8 ounces sliced mushrooms (optional) 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour 2 cups unsalted beef stock 1 tablespoon freshly chopped thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme) 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce Kosher salt Freshly ground black pepper Freshly chopped parsley for garnish

BY BELINDA SMITH-SULLIVAN

In a large mixing bowl, combine ground beef, onion, tomato paste, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper. Mix well. Shape into four oval-shaped patties. In a large skillet, over medium-high heat, heat oil. Cook patties 3–4 minutes on each side until browned; remove from skillet to a platter and set aside.

CHEESY COTTAGE FRIES SERVES 4–6

28

SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING  |  MAY 2018 | SCLIVING.COOP

Melt 2 tablespoons butter in skillet and saute mushrooms until browned, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside. Wipe out skillet and add remaining 2 tablespoons butter. When melted, add flour and whisk constantly until a sandlike consistency. Gradually add beef stock and whisk until flour and stock are completely combined and start to thicken. Add thyme and Worcestershire sauce and bring to a simmer. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Reduce heat to low; return patties to skillet. Cover with mushrooms and simmer, covered, for 10–15 minutes or until patties are thoroughly cooked and sauce has thickened. Serve with pasta or mashed potatoes; garnish with parsley.

K A REN H ERM A N N

3 russet potatoes, sliced into ¼-inch rounds 2 teaspoons kosher salt 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning ½ cup olive oil Grated Parmesan or sharp cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 425 F. In a large bowl, soak potato slices in cold water for 30–60 minutes. Pat dry potatoes and place in a single layer on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking oil. In a small bowl, mix salt, pepper and Italian seasoning. Sprinkle one side of potatoes with mix and brush with olive oil. (You can also use olive oil spray.) Turn potatoes over and repeat. Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes; flip over and bake for another 15 minutes, until browned on the outside but soft on the inside. Serve with your favorite condiment or garnish with grated Parmesan or cheddar cheese.

K A REN H ERM A N N

Delicious, ss​ ple sim and timele er food —all-American din good eating is the ultimate feelxt time you travel experience. The ne flashing neon by car and see that te of nostalgia. sign, pop in for a tas up one of Or better yet, whip cipes in these diner-style re own the comfort of your home.


SERVES 4

½ cup all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon garlic powder 1 teaspoon onion powder 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning J teaspoon cayenne pepper Kosher salt Freshly ground black pepper 4 bone-in chicken breasts (or 1 cut-up chicken), rinsed and patted dry ¼ cup vegetable oil, divided 1 large onion, halved and sliced 1 ½ cups unsalted chicken stock

Preheat oven to 350 F. In a large bowl or ziplock bag, combine flour, garlic powder, onion powder, poultry seasoning, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper. Toss chicken in flour mixture to coat all sides. In a large cast-iron or heavy-bottomed skillet, over medium-high heat, heat 2 tablespoons oil. Shake excess flour from chicken and add to hot oil, skin side down. Sear until brown on all sides; remove from skillet and keep warm. Add onions to skillet and saute until soft and translucent. Remove from skillet and set aside. Wipe out skillet and add remaining 2 table­ spoons oil. Add 2 tablespoons of leftover seasoned flour; stir constantly until a sand-like consistency and lightly brown. Gradually add chicken stock and whisk until flour and stock are completely combined and start to thicken. When starting to boil, remove from heat. Add chicken, with juices, back to the skillet and spoon onions over the top of chicken. Transfer skillet to oven and bake until internal temperature of chicken is 165 F on an instant-read thermometer, about 20–25 minutes. Serve with your favorite side of mashed potatoes or rice.

G I N A MOORE

GW ÉN A Ë L LE VOT

SOUTHERN SMOTHERED CHICKEN

CHERRY ALMOND MERINGUE PIE

½ cup sugar, divided 3 tablespoons cornstarch ¾ cup syrup from cherries 2 15-ounce cans cherries, drained (save syrup) 1 tablespoon unsalted butter 2 tablespoons fresh-squeezed lemon juice 1 teaspoon almond extract

CRUST: Preheat oven to 375 F. Lay pie crust on a clean, dry surface dusted with flour (just enough to keep crust from sticking to the surface). In a small bowl, mix ground almonds and sugar. Sprinkle mixture evenly over the crust. Use a rolling pin to press the crumb mixture lightly into the crust. Line a 9-inch pie plate with crust and crimp/flute edges. Prick the bottom of the crust all over with a fork; line with parchment or wax paper secured with pie weights or dried beans. Bake for 25 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven and remove the parchment paper and weights. Let cool to room temperature.

MERINGUE

FILLING:

SERVES 8–10

CRUST

1 9-inch pie crust, store-bought or homemade 2 tablespoons ground almonds 2 tablespoons superfine sugar FILLING

2 large egg whites, room temperature Pinch kosher salt ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar ½ teaspoon vanilla ¼ cup superfine sugar

What’s cooking at

SCLiving.coop

Whip up a fluffy meringue topping for your lemon, banana or other favorite pies with help from Chef Belinda’s latest cooking video at

SCLiving.coop/food/ chefbelinda

In a medium saucepan, over medium heat, combine ¼ cup sugar, cornstarch and syrup. Stir, occasionally, until mixture starts to bubble; then cook one minute longer. Add remaining sugar, cherries, butter, lemon juice and extract. Stir, remove from heat and set aside.

MERINGUE: In the bowl of a stand mixer with whisk attachment, add egg whites, salt, cream of tartar and vanilla. Slowly increase mixer speed to the highest setting. Beat until frothy and soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar and beat until stiff peaks form and meringue is glossy. ASSEMBLE AND BAKE: Pour filling into baked pie crust. Spread meringue over top of filling, sealing all the way to the crust. Bake for 15 minutes or until meringue is golden brown. Let cool on a rack for one hour. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before cutting or serving.

SCLIVING.COOP  | MAY 2018  |  SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING

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SC   chef’s choice

A taste of Darlington BY LIBBY SWOPE WIERSEMA | PHOTOS BY JEFF SMITH

THE BACKDOOR SLAMS AT ONE OF DARLINGTON’S MOST

gracious homes. It’s early on a crisp March morning, and local farmer Ricky James is hauling in some pay dirt: freshly harvested collards. The comforting aroma of good things cooking wraps around the porch like a warm scarf on a pretty lady’s neck. Go ahead and claim a rocking chair—many an appetite has been worked up here by simply sitting and doing a little deep breathing. Fresh vegetables, home cooking and porch time—it’s an irresistible combination that keeps the dining rooms filled at this historic hometurned-restaurant. Owner Todd Hardee, who is also town coroner and proprietor of the funeral home next door, named his operation South of Pearl for its location one block down from busy Pearl Street. Intended initially as a special event venue, Hardee had a change of heart and established limited hours for dinner service. “The focus of our menu is close to home, as in Darlington County,” says Hardee. “If we can’t get it right here, then we get it from the Pee Dee. If we can’t get it from the Pee Dee, then we get it from South Carolina. If we can’t get it in South Carolina, just forget it.” The concept found favor with Darlingtonians and the annual NASCAR crowd, leading Hardee to give in to public demand and open for lunch and dinner. Making profits was never part of his vision, though.

Pee Dee farmers like Ricky James keep the restaurant well-supplied with the freshest local produce.

30

Owner Todd Hardee (above) took care to restore the historic Boatwright home and add a small bar before opening South of Pearl.

‘The focus of our menu is close to home. ... If we can’t get it in South Carolina, just forget it.’

Chef Kent Carpenter

—OWNER TODD HARDEE

“South of Pearl is about my love for this town, about supporting local businesses and making Darlington a culinary destination,” says Hardee. “It’s a small affair but I look at it this way: We could serve 7,500 and do it wrong or serve 48 and do it right. We’re doing it right.” He bought the property and began extensive renovations in 2014 with an eye toward retaining as many original features as possible. After all, the late South Carolina novelist, Elizabeth Boatwright Coker, was born in an upstairs bedroom in 1909. Those too young to appreciate that bit of history might be more wowed to know that Coker’s brother, Purvis James Boatwright, South of Pearl was the maternal grandfather of rocker 117 Edwards Avenue, Darlington Edwin McCain, who romped the house’s (843) 944-0398; hallways as a child. www.southofpearl.com “We honor the roots of this house HOURS: Lunch buffet: Tuesday through and town through the restaurant,” says Friday, 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Dinner: Hardee. “We use Elizabeth Boatwright Thursday and Friday, 6 to 10 p.m. Reservations are requested for dinner. Coker’s pimiento cheese recipe and other longtime Darlington favorites.

SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING  |  MAY 2018 | SCLIVING.COOP


the size of an angel’s wing. If you want to really get a Come a little early to do taste of Darlington, order an some ­tippling in the restauUptown Egg Roll. It’s got lots of local things inside: collards, rant’s bustling cocktail bar. Sip chicken, black-eyed peas. house specialties like Hugo’s When you bite into one, you Hurricane, a tropical rum can taste that good old Indian drink, or go all-out Darlington Branch dirt.” with a bourbon and cola While Hardee hobnobs served with a pack of peanuts. 569132V1 with the customers, executive A typical lunch buffet chef Kent Carpenter prepares might include pulled pork, a buffet lunch in the small, fried chicken, fried ­flounder, but efficient kitchen. South of Pearl specializes in home-cooking favorites, and of course, French fries. field peas, stewed squash, “I love to cook and serve fried okra, vegetable soup, foods like we eat at home,” says Carpenter. “I’ve worked in cornbread and baked ham that Carpenter himself serves from restaurant management but being at the helm of the kitchen a carving station. There’s also a colorful salad table full of is my favorite place now, especially at dinnertime.” fresh fixings. On Thursday and Friday evenings, the operation gets Hardee, who admits he has a strong affection for food, gussied up for “by reservation only,” full-service dining. Cloth points out one platter on the buffet that seems a bit out of napkins and fresh-off-the-presses menus with a list of that place. day’s offerings mark each place setting. Think prime rib, “Know why we got those french fries?” he asks, a hint of grilled rib-eye steak and diamond-scored crispy flounder mischief in his eye. “Because I like ’em, that’s why!”

The most dangerous animals in the forest don’t live there.

Cogongrass

is invading SC forests! REPORT COGONGRASS:

864-646-2140 or invasives@clemson.edu

Find out more at clemson.edu/invasives ONLY YOU CAN PR E VE N T W I L D FIRE S. w w w. s m o k e y b e a r. c o m

Chris Evans, Illinois Wildlife Action Plan, Bugwood.org SCLIVING.COOP  | MAY 2018  |  SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING

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SC   gardener

MAY IN THE GARDEN

n Avoid disappointing mouth puckering by keeping garden-grown cucumbers mulched and on a regular watering schedule when the rains don’t come. This will prevent a nasty, bitter taste due to the stress of dry conditions. n Birds will be working overtime with spring activities this month, so don’t forget to lightly wipe the birdbath and refill it with refreshing water at least once a week.

TIP OF THE MONTH Have an ugly wire fence? Want a summertime privacy screen? Do the rails on your deck need dressing up? If your answer is “Yes” to one or more of these questions, now is a good time to plant any of the many fast-growing, flowering vines such as moonvine, mandevilla, morning glory, black-eyed Susan vine, cardinal climber, scarlet runner bean, firecracker vine, cypress vine or purple hyacinth bean. All of these vines can be grown from seed, but for quicker coverage, consider buying young plants from local nurseries.

L . A . JACKSO N

32

Purple hyacinth bean is one vine that can quickly dress up a plain fence in the summer.

Don’t fear the fairy rings BY L.A. JACKSON

IN THE UNENDING QUEST FOR PERFECT

lawns, South Carolina homeowners who successfully battle the typical challenges of bad bugs, diseases and drought are sometimes mystified by what might seem to be tribulation by magic, for the fairy ring doth lurk. You heard that right—fairy ring. When rains return after an extended dry spell, mushrooms may pop up in the yard. Sometimes, groupings of these

Any capable wizard will tell you such a ring is the result of fairies dancing in circles on the lawn at night. uninvited fungi form a mysterious curved pattern or even a full circle. This oddity can even manifest itself minus the mushrooms in an arched band of grass that is greener and taller than surrounding grass. Any capable wizard will tell you such a ring is the result of fairies dancing in circles on the lawn at night, with their enchanted tootsies turning the grass greener, and the mushrooms being conjured up as stools for the blithe spirits to sit a spell while watching the festivities. I’m not a wizard, but I do have another explanation: Fairy rings are caused by soil-borne fungi circling and feeding on an underground organic source such as a stump, old board or dead tree root. In the process of breaking the decaying matter down, the busy fungi, besides developing mushrooms, release nutrients into the soil, which

SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING  |  MAY 2018 | SCLIVING.COOP

Is this curved pattern of mushrooms, commonly known as a fairy ring, the work of fungi or the aftermath of a supernatural dance party?

explains the greener grass. For preventing fairy rings, special spells might help, but a more practical solution is to keep the lawn clear of underground debris on which such fungi feed. If you use topsoil or fill dirt to renovate a lawn, make sure it is screened. To eliminate an existing fairy ring, one approach is to use a pry bar or garden fork to stab holes 8 inches deep into the ring, and then saturate the area with water several times over the course of a few weeks. This will help break up the mycelium, the underground fungal network that fuels mushroom production. In fact, aerating the area beyond the ring will weaken its ability to grow (it can expand over the years) while providing a friendly field for stronger stands of grass. Patrolling the lawn and breaking off any mushrooms before they release spores can also weaken a ring. A last resort (for gardeners who enjoy hard, sweaty labor) is to dig up the ring and dispose of the tainted topsoil. As an alternative, leave the circle unbroken. Often, a fairy ring will simply fade away after a few years. During that time, if it is noticed at any garden gathering you might have, just start the conversation off with, “Well, you see, these magical creatures come over to party at night, and ….” L.A. JACKSON is the former editor of Carolina Gardener magazine. Contact him at lajackson1@gmail.com.

L . A . JACKSO N

n If pretty flowering annuals such as salvias, zinnias, marigolds, cosmos and petunias have just found places in your flower border, abuse them. Pinch their tips back after they reach about 6 to 8 inches tall to encourage branching, which will lead to bushier growth and more blooms.


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35


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SC   calendar MAY 15 – JUNE 15

Upstate M AY

15–17  Weekday Waterfall Tours, Devils Fork State Park, Salem. (864) 944‑2639. 17  ArtWalk, downtown cultural district, Spartanburg. (864) 542‑2787. 17  Opening Reception, Off the Wall + Jonathan Brilliant, Spartanburg Art Museum, Spartanburg. (864) 582‑7616. 18  Espresso no. 4: Saxoccino, Chapman Cultural Center, Spartanburg. (864) 542‑2787. 19  Issaqueena’s Flight for the Fight, downtown, Six Mile. flightforthefight.com. 19  Family Fishing Clinic, Table Rock State Park, Pickens. (864) 878‑9813. 19  Paint Your Own Special Memory, Oconee State Park, Mountain Rest. (864) 638‑5353. 19  “Power from the Past” Antique Show and Swap Meet, Abner Creek Baptist Church, Greer. (864) 680‑4004. 19  Rally in the Valley, Lake Jemiki, Walhalla. oconeeforever@gmail.com. 24, 26 and 27  Addams Family, Chapman Cultural Center, Spartanburg. (864) 542‑2787. 26  2018 Priscilla Shirer Simulcast, Unity Baptist Church, Simpsonville. (928) 308‑8388. 26  Suited to Swim, Paris Mountain State Park, Greenville. (864) 244‑5565. 26  Sunrise Hike of Bald Knob, Table Rock State Park, Pickens. (864) 878‑9813. 28  Memorial Day God and Country Bluegrass Concert, Aunt Sue’s Country Corner, Pickens. (864) 878‑4366. 31  S.C. High School Rodeo, T. Ed. Garrison Livestock Arena, Pendleton. (803) 535‑9545. JU NE

1  First Friday Walk with David Bradshaw, Caboose Parking Area at South Carolina Botanical Garden, Clemson. (864) 650‑1811. 1–2  S.C. High School Rodeo, T. Ed. Garrison Livestock Arena, Pendleton. (803) 535‑9545. 2  Saluda River Rally, Dolly Cooper Park, Greenville. (864) 231‑7275. 6  Lunch and Learn: Growing and Using Herbs with LayLa Burgess and Adair Hoover, Hayden Conference Center at South Carolina Botanical Garden, Clemson. (864) 656‑2836. 7  Musgrove Mill Battlefield Guided Hike, Musgrove Mill State Historic Site, Clinton. (864) 938‑0100.

36

SCLiving.coop/calendar

26  Moonlight Canoe Float, Cheraw

Our mobile-friendly site lists even more festivals, shows and events. You’ll also find instructions on submitting your event. Please confirm information with the hosting event before attending.

27  5th Annual Brookgreen Gardens

Piles of crabs and plenty of music await at Little River’s scenic water­ front the weekend of May 19–20 at the World Famous Blue Crab Festival.

7–8  2018 Golden Tiger Reunion, Madren Conference Center, Clemson. (864) 656‑7155. 8  Garden Creativity: Red, White & Indigo, Hanson Nature Learning Center at South Carolina Botanical Garden, Clemson. (864) 656‑0203. 8  Lori Solymosi exhibition, Art Gallery on Pendleton Square, Pendleton. (864) 221‑0129. 8–10  Palmetto Sport Horse Spring Classic, T. Ed Garrison Livestock Arena, Pendleton. (828) 674‑1758. 9  Strides for Autism Festival, Heritage Park, Simpsonville. (864) 750‑6988. 9  What Lies Beneath, McAlister Auditorium at Furman University, Greenville. (864) 326‑5690. O NG O ING

Every other Wednesday  Music

Sandwiched In, Spartanburg County Public Library, Spartanburg. (864) 948‑9020. Third Thursdays  ArtWalk, downtown cultural district, Spartanburg. (864) 582‑7616. Fridays  Starry Nights, Roper Mountain Science Center, Greenville. (864) 355‑8900.

18–20  Vintage Market Days, Camden City Arena, Camden. (803) 873‑7467. 19  21st Annual McConnells Antique Tractor Show, McConnells Community Center, McConnells. (803) 684‑5161. 19  Escape Aiken City Wide Search, downtown, Aiken. (803) 500‑1508. 19  Lizard Man Run 5K, Poinsett State Park, Wedgefield. (803) 494‑8177. 19  Redcliffe’s Rooftop Talks, Redcliffe Plantation State Historic Site, Beech Island. (803) 827‑1473. 19  Try Abstracts (multimedia) with Marcia Kort Buike, Center for the Arts, Rock Hill. (803) 328‑2787. 20  Lily Fest 2018, Landsford Canal State Park, Catawba. (803) 789‑5800. 26  Aiken Memorial Day Parade, downtown, Aiken. (803) 641‑7073. 26  Frog Float, Poinsett State Park, Wedgefield. (803) 494‑8177. 26  Sponge Dodge Wet Pants, Poinsett State Park, Wedgefield. (803) 494‑8177. 26  Tie-Dye Tee Shirts, Poinsett State Park, Wedgefield. (803) 494‑8177. 29  Twilight Paddling, Chester State Park, Chester. (803) 385‑2680. JU NE

Midlands MAY

17  Wood Carving Demo with Ike

Carpenter, Aiken County Visitors Center, Aiken. (803) 642‑7557. 18–19  Battle of Camden BBQ Festival, Historic Camden Revolutionary War Site, Camden. (803) 432‑4391. 18–19  Birdfest Bluegrass Music Festival, Pineland Farm, Panola. (803) 435‑5282.

1  Historic USC Horseshoe Walking

Tour, South Caroliniana Library, Columbia. (803) 777‑5158. 1–9  HIR, Trustus Theatre, Columbia. (803) 254‑9732. 2  Drift Jam Flotilla Music Festival, Spence Island, Lake Murray. dgpromotes@gmail.com. 2  Roads n’ Rails, Aiken Visitors Center and Train Museum, Aiken. (803) 293‑7846. 2  Run for the Hills 5K Trail Run, Greystone Preserve, North Augusta. (706) 312‑5263.

SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING  |  MAY 2018 | SCLIVING.COOP

State Park, Cheraw. (843) 537‑9656.

2  South Fork of the Edisto River Canoe/Kayak River Trip, Ness Bridge Landing, Orangeburg. (803) 300‑1972. 3  Big Delicious Event, Gravatt Camp and Conference Center, Aiken. (803) 648‑1817. 7  Savannah River Site Public Tour, Applied Research Center, New Ellenton. (803) 952‑8994. 8  Sister Hazel, Icehouse Amphi­ theater, Lexington. (803) 358‑7275. 8–9  i2i Miles to Shop Yard Sale, 75 miles of highway, Chester and surrounding areas. (803) 379‑1683. 8–10  Southern Guitar Festival Competition, Richland Library, Columbia. (803) 530‑2735. 9  Kids Summer Art Classes, Center for the Arts, Rock Hill. (803) 328‑2787. 15–16  Juneteenth Rock Hill, multiple venues, Rock Hill. juneteenthrockhill@gmail.com. 15–24  Hampton County Watermelon Festival, various venues, Hampton. (803) 943‑8324. ONGOING

Daily  “Requiem for Mother Emanuel,” S.C. State Museum, Columbia. (803) 898‑4921.

Lowcountry MAY

2–27  Evita, Arts Center of Coastal

Carolina, Hilton Head Island. (843) 842‑2787. 16–19  S.C. Senior Sports Classic, Francis Marion University, Florence. (843) 667‑6999. 19  Charleston Beer Garden, The Grove at Patriots Point, Mount Pleasant. (843) 747‑2273. 19  Road Wild 135 Race, Myrtle Beach Speedway, Myrtle Beach. (843) 236‑0500. 19–20  World Famous Blue Crab Festival, waterfront, Little River. (843) 249‑6604. 25  Moonlight Mixer, Edwin S. Taylor Folly Beach Fishing Pier, Folly Beach. (843) 795‑4386. 25  Paddle with a Ranger, Colleton State Park, Walterboro. (843) 538‑8206. 25–June 10  Piccolo Spoleto Festival, multiple performing arts venues, Charleston. (843) 724‑7305.

5K, Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet. (843) 267‑7443. 27  Surfside Beach Memorial Day Golf Cart Parade, Ocean Boulevard, Surfside Beach. (843) 650‑9548. 28  Surfside Beach Memorial Day Service, Veteran’s Memorial, Surfside Beach. (843) 650‑9548. JU NE

1  Reggae Nights Summer Concert with Ras Bonghi Reggae All Stars, James Island County Park, Charleston. (843) 795‑4386. 2  2018 Sweetgrass Cultural Arts Festival, Mount Pleasant Memorial Waterfront Park, Mount Pleasant. (843) 856‑9732. 2  Corvettes at Myrtle Beach Car Show, Broadway at the Beach, Myrtle Beach. mbcorvettclub@gmail.com. 2  Defending Charles Towne, Charles Towne Landing State Historic Site, Charleston. (843) 852‑4200. 2  Summer Fun Run 165 Race, Myrtle Beach Speedway, Myrtle Beach. (843) 236‑0500. 2–3  Brookgreen Art Festival, Brookgreen Gardens, Murrells Inlet. (843) 235‑6000. 3  Big Band and Dance Event, Myrtle Beach Base Recreation Center, Myrtle Beach. (703) 795‑0650. 7–10  Carolina Country Music Fest, The Pavilion Park, Myrtle Beach. (615) 627‑7752. 9  Palm Charter High School 1st Annual Run/Walk for the Checkered Flag, Myrtle Beach Speedway, Myrtle Beach. (843) 903‑6600. 9  Shaggin’ on the Cooper, Mount Pleasant Pier, Mount Pleasant. (843) 795‑4386. 15  Moonlight Mixer, Edwin S. Taylor Folly Beach Fishing Pier, Folly Beach. (843) 795‑4386. 15  Paddle with a Ranger, Colleton State Park, Walterboro. (843) 538‑8206. ONGOING

Daily until June 30  Hampton Plantation Mansion Tours, Hampton Plantation State Historic Site, McClellanville. (843) 546‑9361. Tuesdays through September  Mount Pleasant

Farmers Market, Pavilion at Moultrie Middle School, Mount Pleasant. (843) 884‑2528. Fourth Tuesdays  Wash Day, L.W. Paul Living History Farm, Conway. (843) 365‑3596. First Saturdays  History in the Landscape, Hampton Plantation State Historic Site, Charleston. (843) 546‑9361.


|

SC   humor me

Not your mama’s manners BY JAN A. IGOE

or other useful pastime, you might be missing a revolution in the world of table manners that would surely kill Emily Post if she weren’t already dead. In a world plagued by rampant obesity, soaring cholesterol and thyroids moving at the speed of sludge, enter mukbang, the South Korean phenomenon that draws millions of viewers to online channels devoted to—­ watching total strangers eat. And by eat, I mean single­ handedly swallow enough food for a family of 10, or “consume mass quantities,” in Conehead parlance. Forget everything you know about talking with food in your mouth. It’s not taboo when you’re telling your fans about what you’re eating. Mukbangers don’t agonize over which utensil is the salad fork. They use their hands, they slobber and smack their lips—all while earning heaping platters of money. You can watch skinny guys dive into 100 strips of bacon with cheese fondue, or witness a delicate Asian woman attack 10,000 calories worth of the world’s hottest garlic chili noodles with chopsticks. There are even some vegan channels for mukbang aficionados who prefer baby kale to KFC. While most mukbang portions are enormous, it’s not a race to see who finishes first. A professional speed eater like Sonya Thomas, on the other hand, competes against men three times her size as well as the clock. Tiny Sonya has set world records for downing 455 oysters in five minutes; 38 MoonPies in eight minutes; 53 soft tacos in 12 minutes and IF YOU HAVE A JOB

38

They use their hands, they slobber and smack their lips—all while earning heaping platters of money. more than eight pounds of chili cheese fries in 10 minutes, according to her website. If you’re thinking about asking her to dinner, start with Golden Corral. A few years ago, I witnessed one of those live eating contests and still have nightmares to prove it. Eating wasn’t meant to be a contact sport, but you’d never know it the way the pros tackle food and hurl it down their throats. Their jaws chomp furiously, as they force mashed food into cheeks painfully stretched past mortal capacity. I choked just watching and kept praying that whatever they hurled down wouldn’t get hurled back up. It was too much like watching my kids

SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING  |  MAY 2018 | SCLIVING.COOP

eat. When they were little, I always took my glasses off to feed them. I didn’t want to see the carnage in progress, at least not in sharp focus. It was enough to clean up the tomato sauce graffiti and spaghetti projectiles off the walls and ceiling after the fact. They had yet to invent Ragu-proof wall paint. Mukbang is a bit more civilized than toddlers speed eating. They don’t eat bugs, rocks, industrial waste, dog kibble or anything unusually disgusting. It’s a safety thing, because no matter what you post, someone will think it’s a good idea and try it. Let’s not forget how fast those tasty Tide Pods caught on. When you consume mass quantities, even edible ones, there will be consequences. The old advice to “never eat anything bigger than your head” still applies. Gastroenterologists and cardiologists (always the joy killers) point out side ­effects ranging from permanently distended stomachs to diabetes, strokes and heart ­attacks waiting in the (buffalo) wings. When they have a channel that protects viewers from that stuff, I’ll watch. Until then, I need a big, strong guy to block the kitchen when I’m dying for mass quantities of MoonPies. Or maybe Sonya, if she’s through eating. JAN A. IGOE has been on more diets than Oprah. She fears mukbang videos would just make her hungrier, so she’ll keep wrestling that perennial 10 extra pounds on her own. But if anyone wants to block the fridge, that would be great. Join the fun at HumorMe@SCLiving.coop.


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South Carolina Living May 2018  

Make your house happy Home improvement projects that save energy Tigers at the beach Diner favorites

South Carolina Living May 2018  

Make your house happy Home improvement projects that save energy Tigers at the beach Diner favorites

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