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verge downtown augusta

free from “will you” to “i do” | a bridal guide february 2009

verge / february / 3

contents 11

From “Will You” to “I Do” he saw / she saw: the dennis’ experience front porch: an artisan cake maker the guide: where to find your wedding needs in downtown


Into The Woods and Out of the Woods Behind the scenes with the Augusta Players


James Brown Arena Rocks Augusta Disturbed concert a sign of bigger things to come


27 41

gallery: edith caywood soundcheck: spectrum sings motown onstage: torch song trilogy part III offstage: rolling on the river good chow / Beamie’s & New Moon Beamie’s returns to its roots while New Moon adds flavor

lokal loudness choice award nominees discover the origin of the award names

experience more

5 7 9 29 33 35 37 39 43 45

volume one issue twelve

smatterings quick clips discover downtown and a view from downtown pipeline / get plugged into events found in translation / micah swenson printed matter / cornelia funke past times / old government house explore downtown hands across downtown /heart & sole augusta music 101

on the cover: downtown as i see it #12 going to the chapel / photo by Elizabeth Benson

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verge publisher Matt Plocha editor Lara Plocha pipeline editors Claire Riche Jason Barron web guy Andy Donnan photography editor Elizabeth Benson Editorial content of verge is the opinion of each contributing writer and is not necessarily the opinion of verge, its staff or its advertisers. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited.

copyright 2008, 2009 verge all rights reserved verge is a free monthly publication verge is printed on 50% recycled stock. It may be recycled further, please do your part. contact us 706.951.0579 advertising got a story tip? free event listings letters to the editor mail 1124 Broad Street Augusta GA 30901 submit your ideas

smatterings / notes from the publisher Local. Our duty to one another begins with a few first steps.

Here we go…are you ready? For twelve months, we have talked about the importance of our local economy and hometown community. Now, you see it on television, hear about it on the radio and read about it in newspapers and online: an air of change. Now, more than ever, it is important to be personally accountable, fiscally responsible, culturally aware and active in our home communities. True change requires our involvement at the grassroots level. Change requires cohesiveness among our community members on all levels. From the school teacher to the commissioner, from the street sweeper to the surgeon, we must look beyond our rights to our responsibility to create and sustain community. This is a duty not based on self-importance or community standing, but based on the desire for a better way of life. Change doesn’t come from government programs and bailouts. It isn’t for “those people over there” to do, but for you and I to do. After all, we are “the people over there” or ,as nobly put in our constitution, “We the People.” It is time to put aside our quarrels, our lobbying and our “me first” self-serving mantras. We must roll up our sleeves and dig in to build up our hometown and our community. We must accept the challenge to reshape the way we think about ourselves, our family, our friends and our community and our habits with each. You’ve heard this before? So I ask: Is it important? Your community? Your hometown? I hope and trust that the answer is: Yes!

An important first step is to support your local and independently owned businesses, the front lines of our community. These folks have invested themselves in providing our community with goods and services. Without them there would be: No arts. No music scene. No independent coffee shops. No music stores. No book stores. No dress shops. No Eateries. It would be pretty grey. Part of our challenge is to think local first. Remember the independent business owner the next time a birthday arises, an anniversary comes along, and when a friend gets promoted or graduates. The next time you need a special something or have a date night, think of the many independent business owners that do not answer to a Board of Directors whose primary motive is stock value, but rather, to serve you. These local business owners live or die on your commitment to them. Supporting them has great impact on the current and future state of our local economy. For me, personally, it would be a sad day to walk the streets of downtown and see empty store fronts because of my inability to be a little creative in my purchasing decisions. Goods and services will flourish when the market demand is higher and we become more involved in our community. When foot traffic rules the sidewalks of downtown and businesses are bustling with customers each and every day. Then, opportunity arises for new business to open, new offerings and our local economy will begin to really flourish. It takes us getting more involved, in supporting the

independent business owner. That is the challenge that we all face. It at times is a difficult decision to get out of our comfort zone of having products available twenty four hours a day seven days a week or just a few clicks away. It is more responsible for us to go and seek out products or services that might require a little more time to find but in the end understand that the greater good of my community is benefitting and growing. Trust me, if there is a product or service that you absolutely can not find in your downtown district – ask and I am sure that you will soon be able to get it. The independent business owner is quick on their feet and more than happy to make your life happier through thoughtful customer service and product offering. This issue of verge highlights just one of many opportunities to fulfill the needs of the market. We took a look at weddings. A popular theme this time of year and we gave it our attention. A bride and groom can find all their wedding services, products in the downtown. From something old to something new. Something borrowed to something blue. Even a sixpence can be found. This is one example of the offering this unique district provides to the marketplace. As you browse the pages this month, I challenge you to visit them. Become accountable to your community. Enjoy thought provoking alternatives to your shopping trends. Commitment to the bigger picture. You might find a few surprises along the way. See you downtown! Matt

find what you want / advertiser index shops & galleries 18 4 20 26 6 14 10 16 26 24 46 36 16 4 40 10 14 2

Alex Slapak Design Alisia Designs blue magnolia The Book Tavern Cloud Nine Costumes by Michele Elduets Treasures of the World Estate Jewelry Forrest Pottery International Uniform Johannsen’s Sporting Goods Midtown Threds Naaiyas Flowers Ninth Street Wine Market Paper Vinyl Cloth PeachMac Quilt Shop on The Corner Rock Bottom Music

18 12 34 14 12 46

Sho-Ane’s Design United Loan & Firearms Vintage 965 Vintage Ooollee Window Gallery Zimmerman Gallery

entertainment & events 44 10 48 8 38 47 34

95 Rock Presents Acoustic Underground Augusta Players Le Chat Noir Lokal Loudness Poison Peach Film Showcase Woodrow Wilson House

restaurants & bars 4 14 18 25 20 46 40 42 32 6 28 40 26 12 28

1102 Bar & Grill Aroma Cafe 209 Blue Sky Kitchen Boll Weevil Cafe The City Club Joe’s Underground La Maison on Telfair The Loft Manuel’s Bread Cafe Metro Coffeehouse & Pub Nacho Mama’s New Moon Café Stillwater Taproom T-Boy’s Po’Boys

services 6 22 26 42 44 8 40 34 44 36 42 20 18 16 36 36

Ampersand Americana Tattoo Augusta Minit Print Casella Eye Center Downtown Dental Halo Salon & Spa Georgia Academy of Massage Health Central Klean Machine Modish Salon & Spa Perry & Company PowerServe Queene Anne Inn Sanford, Bruker & Banks Spa Bleu The Well

shop local and discover it downtown

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verge / february / 7

quick clips  d(a)² elects 2009

board of directors and chooses initiatives

Kevin Grogan, Morris Museum of Art Director, Margaret Peterson, Lea and Gene Glowny (L to R) / photo: Elizabeth Benson

 morris museum of art receives art donation Every artist’s dream is to have their work in a museum. That dream for a talented Low Country artist was realized on January 24, 2009. An original oil painting on canvas entitled Down the Way by Margaret Petterson of Charleston, SC, was donated to the Morris Museum of Art. The donation was arranged by Petterson’s long time friends, Lea and Gene Glowny. Ms. Petterson’s paintings grace several international embassies and private collections; sought after for their unique representation of various locales. The Glownys own the largest collection of her work. Lea is the director of Zimmerman Gallery, while Gene is a retired clinical social worker and gerontologist. Their donation to the Morris’ permanent collection shares a little bit more of unique southern art with our community.

support a cause and get clean naturally

Cloud Nine Natural recently launched its “Community Soap” program. When you purchase a bar of this specially labeled soap, one half of your purchase price goes to a good cause important to our downtown, including both humanitarian and environmental. Find the soap at Cloud Nine, 1036 Broad Street.

court upholds new york state sales tax for big online companies

 downtown keeps

getting cleaner and safer

We recently spotted a group of young men in grey uniforms diligently working side by side with the CADI team, picking up trash. Margaret Woodard says they’re from the Youth Challenge Academy of Fort Gordon. “We began a relationship with them in December as they were our volunteers that set-up and broke down the Christmas event at the Common. We fell in love with them and have forged forward. They come to us each Tuesday to do what is needed. This week, they repaired the information kiosks, cleaned all the period light poles so they can be painted and picked up trash in the tree wells on Broad. They are the most awesome group of young people.”

In a major victory for tax fairness, a court rejected Amazon’s challenge to a New York state law requiring it and other large online retailers to collect sales tax. In a nutshell, big online companies (like and must now pay New York state sales tax just like local mom-and-pop businesses. New York state estimates that they will make up $25 million a year in justifiable sales tax revenue due to the change in the law. The decision opens the way for others states to adopt a similar policy. “At a time when most states are faced with significant budget shortfalls, the New York State Supreme Court’s recent decision clearly has ramifications for the other 44 states that collect sales tax,” said American Booksellers Association COO Oren Teicher. “Given the court victory here in New York, which has brought about concrete and positive change for in-state businesses, it is imperative that we maintain our momentum and keep the pressure on.” Send a letter to our state legislative delegates, encouraging them to follow New York’s example and pursue legislation for tax fairness. Find a sample at 6547.html

At the recent Downtown Augusta Alliance (d(a)²) Annual Meeting, members elected the 2009 Board of Directors: Jeremy Carr (The Well), David Hutchison (The Book Tavern), Trey Kennedy (Georgia Bank and Trust), Kate Lee (Oasis Garden), Roane Loudermilk (The White’s Building), Connie Melear (R.W. Allen, LLC), Travis Petrea (Metro Coffeehouse), Lara Plocha (blue magnolia), Claire Riche (Vintage 965), Kristin Varn (Art on Broad) and Curt Young (Sanford, Bruker and Banks). d(a) ² also announced the key focus areas for 2009: (1) Destination Downtown, (2) Membership Recruitment, (3) Communications, (4) Events and (5) Shop Local Campaign. Downtown Augusta Alliance is downtown’s business and resident association. To find out how you can become involved, visit or contact any of the board members.

augusta chronicle jumps on the stay local campaign

Kudos to The Augusta Chronicle for promoting the idea of staying local when making marketing decisions in their recent campaign targeting potential advertisers. We hope The Chronicle continues this line of thinking, expanding their rally call to encouraging readers to stay local when it comes to other purchasing choices.

preservation and urban revitalization program on february 9

Historic Augusta is hosting an eyeopening program on endangered properties and their preservation in Augusta on February 9 at 4 pm. Mr. Myrick Howard, the Executive Director of Preservation North Carolina, will share his experiences with difficult preservation issues and his impressions of Historic Augusta’s challenges. The program is free and everyone is welcome to attend at the Lamar House, 415 Seventh Street, Augusta. Please RSVP to Historic Augusta by calling 706-724-0436 or by e-mailing

Supporters of the Miller fill the Commission chambers during the recent SPLOST discussions / photo: Elizabeth Benson

 let’s make it to 70! miller celebrates while awaiting splost decision

The Miller celebrates its 69th birthday on Sunday, March 1 at 3 pm, as they wait with baited breath for the Augusta Commission to cast votes for exactly who will receive funding from the next SPLOST allocation. (That’s the Special Purpose Local Option Tax or the Penny Sales Tax). There’s still time to write to the commission, encouraging them to include The Miller on the final list.

got news? we want to hear it

Whether it’s a new product line or an addition to your menu, a new employee or a new title, an addition to the family or a request for help, verge wants to hear from you. Send your “quick clips” to by February 20th for inclusion in March’s issue. We’re here to help you spread the good news about your business.

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discover downtown shop


Naaiya’s Florist & Antiques

Boll Weevil Café & Sweetery

Health Central

Sanford, Bruker & Banks

A unique flower shop with a unique location, Naaiya’s Florist and Antiques is nestled out of sight at 108 Macartan Street. With Valentine’s Day swiftly approaching, Naaiya’s is the perfect place to find the perfect flowers for the perfect Valentine. Naaiya’s is unique, because in addition to their vast array of flower arrangements, they also boast a copious and eclectic assortment of antiques from African and Asian art to American 40’s and 50’s memorabilia and everything in between. This collection must be seen to be believed. The shop always smells of fresh flowers and antique wood, making browsing a pleasurable experience. Naaiya’s is open Monday through Friday from 9 am to 5 pm and on Saturday from 10 am to 2 pm. For flower delivery, call the store at 706.823.5954 or 5955.

Boll Weevil Café & Sweetery is the best place in town to satiate a sweet tooth. With over thirty to choose from, it can be quite a process to decide if you want the Seventh Heaven Chocolate Cake or the fluffy Apple Blossoms. (Hint: the portions are huge, so there’s enough to swap bites). The restaurant has won award after award, praising their excellence for incredible desserts. The lunch and dinner menu offers a range of light fare and comfort foods, from Hoppin’ John to the delightful Curious George turkey sandwich to spiced apple pork chops. Their Riverwalk location, right on the inside of the levee, is convenient for an after dinner stroll, complimenting the restaurant’s relaxing atmosphere. Boll Weevil is open Monday to Thursday from 11:30 am to 10 pm and Friday to Sunday from 11 am to 10:30 pm.

Health Central, one of the nation’s first hospital-based wellness and fitness centers, offers a comprehensive gym membership with three floors of equipment, including weightlifting and cardio machines, a onetenth mile indoor rubber track, in-house three lane pool, saunas, and massage therapy. Health Central also offers several popular LesMills fitness classes such as BodyCombat, BodyPump and BodyStep, and classes in yoga, Pilates, kickboxing, tai chi and more. Each member can design a personalized exercise program. Unlike most gyms, Health Central focuses on the health side of exercise and provides health education programs to help improve your overall health in daily life. Health Central is open Monday to Friday from 5 am to 10 pm, Saturday 8 am to 5 pm and Sunday 11 am to 5 pm.

A true family business, Sanford, Bruker and Banks was opened in 1915 by Davenport Sanford as an independent full service insurance agency, providing property, casualty insurance, bonds, and health and life insurance. Today, the company is run by Mr. Sanford’s grandson, Davenport Bruker (above), who joined the firm in 1983 and has served as the company’s president and CEO since 1986. Bruker has cultivated an extremely well-educated staff, with a focus on friendly, personal customer service, while offering a wide variety of different insurances for personal and business needs. The company is open during normal business hours and has an online service to help customers to see the full range of services offered. For more information, call 706.724.2452.

108 Macartan Street

10 Ninth Street


945 Broad Street


931 Broad Street

stories and photos by Andrew Mullis

shop local / independents outperform chains over holidays, survey finds In a challenging economic climate, independent retailers are outperforming many chains, according to a national survey conducted by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR) in partnership with several business organizations. The survey of 1,142 independent retailers in a wide range of categories from books to clothing found that holiday sales at independent stores declined an average of 5% from the same time period in 2007. That compares favorably to most competing chains, including Barnes & Noble (-7.7%), Best Buy (-6.5%), Borders (-14.0%), JC Penney (-8.1%), The Gap (-14.0%), and WilliamsSonoma (-24.2%). This week, the Commerce Department reported that December retail sales overall were down a record 9.8% over December 2007. “Even as household budgets shrink, many people are choosing to direct more of their spending to local businesses,” said Stacy Mitchell, senior researcher with ILSR. “This could be a key factor in getting the economy back on track. Study after study has concluded that locally owned businesses deliver more jobs and significantly greater economic benefits to their communities.” Another key finding of the survey was that independent retailers in communities with active “Buy Local” campaigns reported much

stronger holiday sales than those in places without such campaigns. “Buy Local” campaigns have been launched in dozens of cities and towns over the last few years. Independent retailers in these cities reported an average drop in sales of 3.2%, compared to a steeper decline of 5.6% for those in cities without an active Buy Local initiative. “During this holiday season, many more customers mentioned their intentional shopping at local businesses,” said a survey respondent in a city with an active Buy Local initiative. Similar comments were offered by numerous survey participants. Ninety-five percent of the retailers said that the fact that their business is locally owned matters to their customers. That’s up from 82% in last year’s survey. “This invaluable data is proving the case that communities are rallying behind independent businesses — and a strong reminder that these entrepreneurs are the bedrock of a local living economy,” said Doug Hammond, executive director of the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies. January 16, 2009: This article is reprinted with permission from The Hometown Advantage Bulletin, published by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance.

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he saw / she saw

will and jessica dennison realize the wedding of their dreams in downtown augusta she saw: When I envisioned our wedding, I was adamant about a few things. First, it needed to be our wedding and not my wedding. I wanted it to be something different and meaningful for both Will and I. he followed: I think the first plan was to get married on a beach and then have a reception later. But when it came down to it, we wanted our family and closest friends there to celebrate with us. she saw: I’m originally from Augusta, so I have a great deal of family here. We wanted a religious ceremony, but we weren’t members of a church in the area. Will’s from Atlanta, and, when we started planning, I was in Chicago for graduate school. My mother and I went hunting for places. I focused on the downtown area, because I have always loved downtown Augusta. I find it so unique and beautiful, the old buildings and the history. I fell in love with the Marbury Center. he followed: I wasn’t so sure about it. she saw: I think Will had problems envisioning the ceremony there, but I was determined. The exposed brick, ivy, and natural beauty of the courtyard are fabulous. he followed: Have you ever been to one of those weddings where you have to drive to the reception, you can’t find it, drive around for 45 minutes looking for it, get there, and all you get is a single mini quiche? You usually end up at McDonald’s on the way home. she saw: The convenience of having the ceremony and reception at the Marbury Center was great. We saved by not having to pay for another site, and our guests could retreat from the July heat immediately after the ceremony. We kept everything downtown. I considered other options in the planning process, but when it came down to it, I wanted out-of-town guests to experience Augusta at its best. I knew they would appreciate the history like I do, find the restaurants exceptional and the area charming. I have to admit, I wanted something different from what I had seen over and over. We chose The Bees Knees for our rehearsal dinner. It was something fresh and new. How many rehearsal dinners have you been to that

served Pad Thai, quesadillas, bruschetta, and pitchers of mojitos all at the same time? The food was such a nice treat. Do I sound like enough of a nerd yet? he followed: Yes. You do. she saw: Since our wedding was at the Marbury Center, Roux’s Catering provided an amazing BBQ Buffet. As far as I know, it’s still offered as an option. Go. Go now and plan a party simply to sample this BBQ. We actually got to eat at our reception and, I have to be honest, I was sampling the potato salad on the way back to the hotel. They packed a basket for us. Now that’s Southern hospitality! Okay. Off of the food and on to my photographer. I chose to work with Bird In Hand Photography. Luckily, my photographer also has an appreciation for downtown, so I was able to use these random old buildings for my photographs. It’s another piece of downtown that people aren’t familiar with and when people see them, they think it’s some really amazing set. No. It’s just the remains of an old hangout or restaurant. I love that my wedding photos have people wanting to know more and see more of Augusta. he followed: And I loved that I wasn’t standing around posing for five hours.

she saw: Oh, yeah. He hates posing for pictures. I have to beg him to do it. he followed: I barely knew the photographers were there. It was really cool. It was exactly what we wanted. We were amazed by the amount of pictures they had taken. We have all of these great shots from a day that flew by pretty quickly. It was nice to look and remember. she saw: When it comes down to it, I love our wedding, because it was our wedding. No one can duplicate it, and I think that is what makes downtown so special. There are so many options and more coming. My husband and I left the reception realizing that we had just had exactly the wedding that we had wanted. It was the family and friends that made it really amazing, but downtown Augusta provided this really significant backdrop. Will Dennison now teaches high school in Milledgeville. His bride, Jessica, is a vocal teacher at Georgia State University. They were married in July and love to return to downtown Augusta. photo by Elizabeth Benson

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verge / february / 13

front porch / courtney cooper

a reconstructed soul creates fantasy cakes Reconstruction. It is the act of rebuilding. It is recreating the old and forgotten into something refreshing and, according to Courtney Cooper, it is the core of her livelihood. “If you’re not constantly changing, then you’re just stagnant and missing the whole point of being alive,” she exclaims with eyes sparkling. Cooper is a multimedia artist; her talents are diverse and fervently creative, allowing her mantra of ‘reconstruction’ to guide her through each of her projects. “I like to use what’s available,” she explains, displaying a few pieces from a series of illustrations where she’s used charcoal and well ink to sketch body images, while using olive oil to blend in parts of the piece. “I think people rely too much on institutions to tell us what’s appropriate to use,” Cooper adds as she reflects on her artistic background, which has been founded purely through curiosity and discovery. She describes how her journey as an artist is much more liberating without a formal background, allowing her work to remain raw and genuine; a true testament of her spirit. “I remember when I was young, my aunt and I strapped pillows on our backs and crawled around like turtles,” she says, using her hands to describe the sentiment. “It’s one of my first memories of being creative.” Upon entering college, Cooper’s father nixed the idea of pursuing the arts and supported psychology, instead. Although frustrating at the time, she’s glad. Throughout the years, she has had the freedom to discover and create on her own terms, combining mediums and progressing through trial and error. “It is something that I’ve always felt, but pushed away for years,” she says. “I cherish it now.” With a constant urge to renew the old and sustain her creative ambition, Cooper has summed up her innovations in a name: Reconstructed Soul; a title that symbolizes her desire to create and restore, as well as her humanity. “My Hebrew name means ‘soul,’ so I thought it would be fitting,” she adds with a smile. Reaching for a beautifully etched bracelet, she explains how she learned pyrographics when she had to take an almost two week long medical leave last August from her previous job. “At that time, I had to completely disconnect,” she says. “But going on that medical leave was the best gift I could’ve had.” Pyrographics (also known as ‘wood burning’) is a process that involves applying a heated object to materials. During that time, Cooper began researching and discovered another talent: cake making. And not just single tier cakes that are baked and iced to be devoured, but edible artistic structures that you almost feel guilty digging into because of their astounding design. “You’d be surprised what a rectangular cake can become,” she says. Each one is fully edible, with the exception of her most recent creation, a cake resembling the scales of justice, where she had to use other materials to ensure that the design remained sturdy. By using The Food Network as a resource, she taught herself how to successfully create a cake, resulting in delightfully inventive and delicious sculptures. In just a short time, her clientele has expanded from close friends and family to catering cakes for weddings and various special occasions, like the one resembling a record player she designed for The Soul Bar’s thirteenth anniversary party. “People came up to it and swore those knobs where real,” Cooper says with a laugh. So what’s the hardest part of the cake making process? “Creative constraints!” she says. “Oh and not always being able to see the cake getting torn up. I want to see it enjoyed.” A busy itinerary coupled with a continual quest to explore her creativity, Cooper surrounds herself with constant inspiration, sought and grounded through her projects and her work with others. What began as a simple therapy has blossomed into a creative crusade of sorts. Her next idea is an art co-op studio, where she hopes to gather like-minded individuals to share their crafts and give them the opportunity to display and sell their work. It is a growing journey for Cooper; reconstructing her surroundings and allowing the creative desire she has always felt disperse and guide her. “It’s what wakes me wake up early and keeps me up late,” she says with a grin. It allows her work to be a sincere example of a soul just wanting to create and reconstruct. Contact Courtney for custom artisan cakes:

by Joyce Tahop • portrait by Elizabeth Benson

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d a o r B n o s d a o r B Costumes by Michele` Two

Vintage Ooollee

verge / february / 15

from “will you” to “i do” / the beginning planning your wedding with downtown style

OK. You’ve found the perfect person, the one with whom you want to spend the rest of your life. It’s been a whirlwind romance and the question’s about to be popped. That’s when the moment arrives: it’s time to plan the wedding, the pivotal event that celebrates passage from one life to another. Simply put, your wedding will be one of the most important events of your life. Whether elaborate or informal, a wedding symbolizes unity and trust between two people being joined together. It’s a beautiful thing. But it doesn’t have to be stressful. Within a few city blocks in downtown Augusta, you can find the majority of what you need to create a beautiful wedding full of treasured memories. Let us be clear at the beginning. This is not a comprehensive guide on how to plan a wedding, but rather the next three pages shows you how downtown Augusta can provide your wedding needs, from the perfect location to cool reception candy. Now, let’s get started!

going to the chapel of love Downtown Augusta has a church on every corner with plenty of traditional sanctuaries, carpeted aisles and grandiose organs. For the more adventurous, try one of these uniques wedding venues (many of which can also double for the reception):

a proposal of romantic proportions


Downtown is full of unique places for a romantic proposal she’ll never forget. A few of our favorites:  Contact the Imperial Theatre and pop the question on their beautfiul marquee.  Pledge your love at the feet of James Brown.  Slip the ring on her finger while overlooking downtown at The Eagle’s Nest (Ramada Plaza).

grandiose: Augusta Museum of History 560 Reynolds St | 706.722.8454 |

elegant: Marion Hatcher Center 519 Greene St | 706.823.2333 |

trendy: Marbury Center


1257 Broad St | 706.724.1250 |

casual cool: The Boathouse 101 Riverfront Dr | 706.821.2870 |

rock n roll: The Jessye Norman Amphitheater on the Riverwalk | 706.821.1754 |

barefoot: The Augusta Common 800 block of Broad | 706.821.1754 |

natural beauty: Enterprise Mill 1450 Greene St | 706.262.4001 |

traditional: Sacred Heart 1301 Greene St | 706.826.4704 |

intimate: Old Government House 432 Telfair Street | 706.821.1812 |

remember the day forever

one ring to bind them


Wedding rings symbolize the unity of the life you’re building together. Hints for a simple selection process:

 Have a professional jeweler measure your ring finger.  Select a ring based on your budget and lifestyle.  18 carat is a good compromise between luxury and practicality. try it on for size: Estate Jewelry | 1040 Broad St | 706.722.1326 Furman Jewelers | 212 Eight St | 706.722.2932 design your own: Alex Slapak Design | 956 Broad St | 706.496.3308

Your wedding day only happens once, so don’t take chances on missing a memory. First, decide on the type of photography you prefer. Are you more of a traditionalist or do you want a more candid approach? Interview your photographer well in advance and ask lots of questions to make sure he or she gets the picture. Ask to see albums from other weddings and get a couple of references (and call them!) Find out about contracts, liability insurance and a detailed plan for the big day. a good tip: do you have a back up plan if an emergency arises and the photographer can’t make it. Check out these downtown photographers: Bird In Hand Photography  Chris Thelan Photography  Donnan Photography 

4 from “will you” to “i do” contributors:  content by Heather Rankin & Wylie Graves  photography by Elizabeth Benson

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verge / february / 17

from “will you” to “i do” / the celebration planning your wedding with downtown style

get the party started in style Here’s your chance to create a reception that mirrors your personality. Look for something a bit different, off the beaten path. Downtown brims with choices, from historic homes to museums to the St. Petersburg Boat, parks and restaurants. Be brave. Maybe you want to dance the night away at Sky City or kick your heels up at Stillwater Taproom. If you’ve got a place in mind that’s not a traditional reception hall, just ask! Here’s a few of our favorite places: The City Club | 724 Broad St | 706.849.4171 With its vintage jazz club feel, The City Club exudes that downtown feeling. A full catering facility, it’s perfect for sit down dinners.

Cotton Patch | 816 Cotton Lane | 706.724.4511 | This cozy restaurant on the Savannah River can hold an intimate reception of 75 or a full scale party of 250. We love the brick paved outside courtyard with the fountain trickling in the background and the cozy Club Room with fireplace.

The Richmond on Greene | 725 Greene St | 706.373.0127 | Originally an annex to the old Richmond Hotel, this spectacular venue is one of downtown’s hidden treasures. With two floors of

5 food, glorious food!

parking, a spacious lobby, elegant ballroom and great room, it’s a venue fit for a queen.

The Eagle’s Nest (Ramada) | 640 Broad St | 706.722.5541 | On the penthouse level of the Ramada Plaza Hotel, this lounge offers a panoramic view of downtown Augusta and the Savannah River. It’s perfect for a charmingly casual affair.

The Lamar Penthouse | 753 Broad St | 706.722.8800 This I.M. Pei designed space, dominating downtown’s skyline, boasts a Willie Wonka-esque glass elevator. Too cool.


Tips from Cal Berry choosing a caterer and menu:

 Set a reasonable budget – be sure its comfortable but will provide the experience you are looking for.  Monitor the budget and keep to it. If you overspend in one area, you will need to cut back in another.

choose your libations


When it comes to wedding receptions, a major consideration is what beverages to serve. If you’re going to have a champagne toast or a bar setup, getting advice from an expert can head off most problems and save a lot of money.

dance the night away


Thanks to Adam Sandler, I’ll never look at a wedding singer the same way. However, selecting the right music and/or wedding singer for your wedding reception is important. Most people find musicians, DJs and the like via word-of-mouth, web sites, or the local yellow pages.

 Research the caterer’s reputation. Word of mouth recommendations, calling references and visiting actual wedding sites can give a good indication of their reputation and presentation. Most of all follow your gut. If you don’t have a good feeling about the caterer’s ability, find someone else.

When choosing champagne, Donna Thompson of Ninth Street Market stresses the importance of sampling it first. You have to know what you like!

 Start a scrapbook of things you would like to have incorporated. Cut out pictures from magazines and label what you like about the particular photo and why. This way the caterer can give you what you want instead of injecting their interpretation of what you want.

Quick tips on knowing how much will you need? The average champagne bottle (.75 liter) pours about six glasses. The 1.5 liter bottle will fill 12 glasses. The 3 liter bottle will fill 24 glasses.

Downtown Augusta is full of musical talent, so think out of the box for a moment and give your guests the thrill of a live show, with the surety of a good one. For local musicians that have the flare of Indie rock, but can surely rock the classics, check out Glue Stick at gluestickmusic. From the site you can hear sample tracks from this local management and promotions company, which represent artists such as Edison Project, John Krueger, and John Kolbeck.

get to sampling:

Ninth Street Market

Joe Stevenson at Glue Stick

remember the little details

design your dream cake

From guestbooks to bridesmaid and groomsman gifts, wedding favors, chocolates, try:

Courtney Cooper creates artisan cakes. See our full article on her new company on page 13.

blue magnolia | 1124 Broad St | 706.828.6550

Reconstructed Soul |

For the bar, Donna can help you create and stay within a budget, select the appropriate drinks to serve and find the best deals.

Berry’s Catering & Floral 520 Reynolds St | 706.724.2171 |

Roux’s Gourmet Catering 1244 Jones St | 706.724.2218 |

Creative Caterers & Café 209 215 10th St | 706.722.9692

706.828.4773 |

18 / february / verge

Creative Caterers

Call Cassandra Brinson to book your special event!

verge / february / 19

from “will you” to “i do” / the details planning your wedding with downtown style

feel like a princess

choose your blooms

It’s the pivotal point, the wedding dress that sets the tone of any girl’s dream wedding. On average, a bride will try on seventeen dresses before settling on the perfect one. A great alternative: design your own. Alisia of Alisia Designs reccomends choosing a style that fits your body type and then, the sky’s the limit with accents. Her favorite design that works for almost every bride is the sixties-inspired strapless, empire waist, flared skirt with fancy beadwork. A few personal tips from Alisia:  Let the dress speak for itself  Don’t be afraid to allow color within the function of the dress, whether beadwork or accents of some type  Make sure it’s comfortable  Finally, keep it simple, but elegant.

For many, flowers add the color and life to a wedding, transforming a space into a beautiful one filled with personality. Kathy Norman of Flowers Xpress recommends pulling out all those bridal magazines you’ve collected. Tear out the pages of bouquets and arrangements that catch your eye. Then, lay them out and pay attention to three specific things: (1) the shape and style, (2) color and (3) types of flowers. A pattern will begin to emerge of what fits your style. Take these to your florist. It’s also helpful to have a sample fabric of the dress to match ribbon and color of the flowers.

try these on for size:

scoop out the blooms:

Alisia Designs


1002 Greene Street #4 | 706.722.8752

Sho-Ane’s Design Studio 1131 Broad Street | 706.724.7220

 Picking flowers in season can save a lot of money and ensure availability  Sunflowers provide an unusual flair (summer)  Tulips make an elegant bouquet for late winter Flowers Xpress, Inc. 1350 Reynolds St |803.221.7773

Naaiya’s Flowers & Antiques 108 Macartan St | 706.823.5954

put your best face forward

Allow your true beauty to shine through! Downtown boasts a number of salons and spas ready to help you prepare for the day of your dreams! Top salon tips for the big day:

tell the world


Today’s choices for wedding invitations offers another opportunity to reflect your personality and wedding them in really unique ways. Inclusion of photographs, funky graphics and unique packaging can really make yours stand out. Consider these factors:  Design: the simpler, the better. avoid a jungle of patterns  Fonts and Colors: most standard invitations have matching fonts and colors, but if you want to design your own, be conscious of the readability and colors that are in harmony with the rest of the design.  Content: personalize your invitation with a short text of your choosing and proof, proof, proof! Augusta Minit Print 328 Tenth St |706.823.6234

Phoenix Commercial Printers 601 Eleventh St | 706.722.5262

 Wear waterproof eye makeup  Ask a trusted friend to be your “spot checker” to alert if you need a touch up.  Test new products well in advance  Pack an emergency kit: include extra hose, face powder, hairspray, clear nail polish, a sewing kit get the look at: Halo Salon 1122 Broad Street | 706.828.4856

Joanie Lamb Salon 720 Broad Street | 706.737.4247

Impressions 879 Broad Street | 706.823.9973

La Dolce Vita 1141 Broad Street | 706.724.0040

Modish Salon 1018 Broad Street | 706.722.1518

Perry & Company 915 Broad Street | 706.724.0977

relax the day before at: Spa Bleu 1018 Broad Street | 706.722.1518

Evoke 206 Eighth Street | 706.627.7979

The DIY Way: Cloud Nine 1036 Broad Street | 706.724.6423

make it legal & lasting

10 12

get the license: Interestingly enough, the most important part of the marriage ceremony is the easiest to accomplish and least expensive. According to the county’s website, to apply for a marriage license, the bride and groom must appear together in person at the courthouse with proof of identity, age and cash. For $61, you’re legally ready for the big day. If you’ve had premarital counseling, your license drops to a mere $26. 530 Greene Street, Room 401 | Monday to Friday | 8:30 am to 4:30 pm

get some counseling: Jeremy Carr, pastor of The Well, sent us some wise words about the importance of pre-marital counseling (and it’s worth much more than the $35 you’ll save on the license!): “Marriage is the uniting of two individuals as one couple: essentially a collision of lives. Premarital counseling equips the couple beforehand with the tools to begin the journey. Counseling during engagement can set the pace for a progressively happy marriage, planning for the marriage and not just the wedding. The aim of premarital counseling is to communicate expectations on multiple levels: spiritual, directional, and functional. Spiritual issues include the role that faith plays in the couple’s relationship while the directional component involves life goals, family, and career hopes. The functional angle deals with more practical issues of day-to-day living, work, schedules, roles, and responsibilities. Far too often, couples tend to focus on just one of the areas at the expense of the others. Premarital counseling is the beginning of the understanding that “we” is more important than “me,” developing a holistic view of life together. Couples grow together. Expectations and roles may change. Premarital counseling establishes a solid foundation for continued growth in the marriage so the couple can continually work on their marriage and not just in it.”

20 / february / verge

verge / february / 21

augusta players / create magic onstage

into the woods and out of the woods and home before dark! Every night at 7 pm, the fellowship hall

is close to the final week of rehearsal, at which time the actors get introduced to

at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church

their set and stage at the Imperial Theater. The final refining process is like adding

buzzes quietly between florescent lights and

skin to the creature, the musical. Stage Manager Debra Chance, who has watched

laminate flooring. Small groups lay back at

intently at all the rehearsals, now steps in to keep everything running smoothly

circular tables, their books and bags strewn.

through all the performances.

Four ladies and a man discuss things intently at the opposite end of the room, at a long table dressed in a red tablecloth, appearing to be a vestige of the most recent potluck.

When asked what drew her to Woods this year, Ms. Ballas, Executive Director of the Players since 1998, cites several factors. One is simply personal fondness for the show. Another is the signals the theater has received from the public. Augusta seems ready for a risky show, Ballas insists, one that may be less well-known

At 7:37 pm, a short woman with luxurious

among the general population. Third, the theater needs to have a nice variety of

black hair in a red and black kaftan stands

performances in the season. Finally, the show matched the talent of available

up and enters the space. She immediately

actors and singers. Into the Woods is what Debi calls “a performer’s show,” an

commands the room. “All right everyone,”

ensemble piece, since no one character is the protagonist. It’s fun for everyone.

she raises her hands. Rehearsal has begun.

The lack of adequate rehearsal space remains a major problem for the Players.

The Augusta Players are at it again. Under the direction of Executive Director

Ballas credits her seasoned actors for being able to see the stage as she sees it, despite

Debi Ballas, they are in their fourth week of rehearsing the upcoming production

the fellowship hall chairs that stand in the place of trees, and the amorphous shape

of Into the Woods. They’ve walked through the entire script and are well into

of the Holy Trinity “stage.” They respond extremely well to her encouragement.

beefing up the bare bones of the show. When the Players populate the floor at

But according to Dave Bellmer, the Narrator and the father of the baker in Woods,

Holy Trinity, they fill it with fairy tales.

the sets become another sort of actor. When they are missing until the very end,

The musical was written by Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine and premiered

it can be disorienting.

in 1987 at the Martin Beck Theater in New York. By 1989, that production had

But the challenge is a good one for a group of people who claim to be able to

run 764 performances and received Tony Awards for Best Book for a Musical and

transform places and people, if only for a night. Perhaps at the end of February,

Best Score.

Augusta will emerge from the Woods with a new perspective on the arts.

It’s no wonder the show has experienced numerous revivals, with its classic mix

Into the Woods runs at the Imperial Theater February 27 and 28 at 8 p.m., and

of familiar and fresh. Lapine and Sondheim tied together memorable fairy tales

March 1st at 3 p.m. Call 706-826-4707 to reserve tickets.

about Jack and the Beanstock, Rapunzel, Cinderella, and Little Red Riding Hood with an original story about a baker and his wife, whose story weaves in and out among the others—within the significant setting, the woods—to create the larger meta-narrative for the show. The familiar in these stories draws the viewer into what’s unknown, and the space between the two becomes a major theme. Sondheim’s intriguing music and lyrics are famous for their complex melodic structures and poetic phrasing. In Into the Woods, his score reaches a pinnacle, with the musical equivalent of arguments, an exchange of goods, and Rapunzel’s hair descending from her tower. And the words are brilliant. Though it’s fun for children to watch, they don’t quite get it, says Ballas. “This show is for adults. It’s full of tongue-in-cheek humor.” Les Regan of the Augusta Opera leads the music with an iron baton. He’s the man who offers the magic that transforms the whole show from a stream of witty phrases into a compelling musical. During a recent run-through with the accompanist, an actor came to the end of a musical phrase to hear Mr. Regan say, “Stop, we have to stop there. You’ve been off-beat for several measures now.” It’s his sharp ear and straight talk that keep Sondheim’s difficult score from dissolving into chaos in these first few practices. If the walk-throughs under Ms. Ballas’ direction are like strengthening the skeleton, then adding the music of a pit orchestra conducted by Mr. Regan is like putting some muscle on the show. Then, costume mistress Ellen Parker and prop mistress Sue Lingenfelter plump it, adding some flesh. Slowly, slowly, as each element is layered, the musical takes shape. Finally, once lines and blocking are memorized and actors are beginning to think like their characters, it’s time to polish. This

by Charlotte Okie • rehearsal photo by Elizabeth Benson

22 / february / verge

bring the boys back to town

global spectrum breathes life back into dying arena

Based on the success of last year’s Buckcherry/Avenged Sevenfold/ Shinebox concert, selling 4700 tickets, Global Spectrum, operators of the Augusta Entertainment Complex, home of the 8,600-seat James Brown Arena and 2,600-seat Bell Auditorium, and the Coliseum Authority, have high hopes that Augusta will soon be back on the map for promoters bringing tours through the Southeast. They cite the February 11 Disturbed/Sevendust/Skindred show as indication that live entertainment will soon be a regular feature in a building that many Augustans thought was doomed to remain empty space. Philadelphia-based Global Spectrum manages over 70 facilities worldwide, including the USC-Aiken Convocation Center. “Our sole focus is management,” says Kayla Ott, Director of Marketing, Augusta Entertainment Complex. “We are here to book shows, sell tickets, create revenue and manage the building. The challenge we are working on in Augusta is being creative with marketing. We can see that people here want entertainment and will purchase tickets.” Global Spectrum assumed management just over six months ago. “In that time, we’ve had many successful shows,” says Ott. “We’re moving forward, we have a plan in place and it’s working very well. It’s all about the market selling tickets, and getting people onboard to buy those tickets early or even on walk-up.” Johnny Hensley, Coliseum Authority member and Chairman of Public Relations for the Entertainment and Marketing Committee, says that hiring Global Spectrum “has been monumental. It removes the complex from local politics and influence. It also removes it from daily micromanaging. We needed to bring in somebody who is the best at what they do, and that’s Global Spectrum.” Hensley is optimistic about Augusta’s future as a stopping place for major tours. “My reason for being on the Coliseum Authority is to attract more shows, period,” he states. “Having spent half my adult life in show business, it’s something I know how to do. There are only two questions: 1) Are Augustans willing to pay the ticket prices, and 2) Are they willing to come see the artists if we get them in here?” What patrons must remember, he says, is the cost of bringing an artist into a venue, which translates into today’s rising ticket costs. “I don’t think people have the concept that Alan Jackson gets $250,000 a night, Usher probably gets $250,000 to $300,000 a night, and Elton John can get every bit of money that comes in the door. I hope Augustans will consider a $60 ticket. In this economy, will they pay it? I just read an article less than a month ago stating that the concert industry had an exceptionally good year last year. People are looking for a diversion and escape, and I hope they’ll spend their money on tickets.” Hensley has big goals for the complex, including “running two full-page ads, in the Atlanta Journal Constitution and Nashville Tennessean, directed to the artists and telling them that we want them at the James Brown Arena, with a likeness of him in the ads to hopefully have some influence.” He also wants to involve downtown establishments, “to encourage people to come downtown for dinner, go to the show, then get the galleries and restaurants to stay open after the show, and also announce from the arena stage for people to remember that downtown is open and rocking, and for people to make an entire evening of it in our theater district.” Ideally, Hensley wants to line up rock, country and pop acts to perform here. “Getting a major artist here within the next 90 days would open the door for others to come,” he reasons. “There had been no major rock shows here in ten years until the Buckcherry show, and it did so well that Disturbed was booked immediately behind it. I think that show is going to be a monster. This town has been starved for a long time for rock shows. If this one does as well as I think it’s going to, there will be another one behind them.”

by Alison Richter

verge / february / 23

disturbed /indestructible for thirteen years

February 11 at James Brown Arena Thirteen years, 10 million albums: everything—and nothing—has changed for the members of Disturbed. “We’re very much the same people we were then,” says guitarist Dan Donegan. “We’re still as motivated. We’ve been climbing that hill throughout our career. In the music business, it’s tough to be relevant for a period of time; the challenge is to continue evolving as songwriters and musicians, and come up with material that connects us with our fan base and keeps them interested. We’re competitive; it’s in our nature to be hard workers. We like challenges and challenging ourselves, and the fact is that we’re still hungry for it. It didn’t come easily; it was always a battle. People try to shut the door on you, and it made us stronger. We wouldn’t want overnight success. We toured hard to get to where we have, built a fan base from the ground up and that’s part of our longevity.” The members of Disturbed—Donegan, vocalist David Draiman, drummer Mike Wengren and bassist John Moyer—are touring in support of their latest release, Indestructible, which debuted on the Billboard album chart at No. 1. The self-produced disc is the band’s fourth overall and third consecutive No. 1, making them one of only six rock bands in history to chart three consecutive No. 1 debuts with studio albums.

photo by joey lawrence

an inimitable sound

donegan’s signature riff To create Disturbed’s powerful, in-yourface riffs, Dan Donegan relies primarily on his Signature Washburn guitar

and Randall 1086 amp with a Bogner Ecstasy head. When it comes to tone, he says, “I think a lot of it comes from your hands and the way you perform. I’ve seen great guitarists play on sh***y guitars through sh***y amps and they sound great because of the way they grab the guitar and perform. I don’t like stuff that’s too high gain and distorted. I don’t like to tune too low; it sounds muddy. A lot of bands do that today and I’m a fan of it in their music, but I stick with the old-school way and try to keep it at a point where I have good clarity when I hit a chord so that my

Selling 10 million albums is no small feat, yet it took until last year for Donegan to make the cover of a prominent guitar publication, while some have yet to grant him the coverage he deserves. And, as is often the case in band situations, mainstream media tends to focus on frontman Draiman. None of this, says Donegan, is of much concern. “Really, it never bothers me and I don’t look that deep into it,” he remarks. “It doesn’t matter to me. I’m secure about who I am and what we do. We all are. It’s nice at some level to be acknowledged as a band. We all know what we contribute, no one can do it alone, and we bring the best out of each other. We accomplished this together, and any positive write-ups or covers or awards … it’s nice, but more important is that we have fans. We don’t need awards and covers if we don’t have a fan base. I have a career because of the fans we’ve earned, and that’s more important to me. A lot of bands have Grammys on their mantle and no tours because they have no base. So yes, we’ve felt like an underground band over the years because it has taken 10 million records in 10 years to be acknowledged, but whatever; I don’t put a lot of thought into it. I know we’ve accomplished something because our fan base has continued to grow. We try to break in new territory and connect on a worldwide level, and the goal is to continue cracking new territory. Critics and magazine covers may come around here and there and take notice of the guys individually, but it’s a band effort and I can’t do it without them.” Indestructible is Disturbed’s first self-produced album, tracked at longtime producer Johnny K’s Groovemaster Recording in Chicago. “Johnny is like a brother,” says Donegan, “and part of the start of this in both our careers.” Still, the group felt ready to do it themselves, despite any perceived danger of getting too close to their own work without an objective fifth party to help rein things in. “We’re always too close to our own work from the minute we write the songs!” Donegan laughs. “We feel strongly about our own opinions and put every song and idea under a microscope. Every track, up to the last one, is as important as the first track. It’s not that we don’t trust another opinion; we’re open to them, but they just have to be better than our opinions! And between our four opinions we achieve the best results. Fortunately, that has not run dry, and hopefully we will continue to get the results we want.” by Alison Richter

notes cut right through.”

get the tix: • $35.50 all seats

24 / february / verge



Inside/Out: The Private World of Edith Caywood

Pops! at the Bell: Spectrum Sings Motown

Inside/Out: The Private World of Edith Caywood at the Morris Museum of Art is the artist’s first museum exhibition in Georgia. Caywood’s paintings have the faintly surreal quality of Southern literature. Art & Antiques describes her work as enigmatic and compares her subject matter with the narratives of Eudora Welty and Flannery O’Connor.

The classic sounds of R&B come to life as the Augusta Symphony’s Pops! at the Bell Series presents Spectrum performing classic Motown hits. The group, Darryl Grant, Pierre Jovan, David Prescott and founder Cushney Roberts, pays tribute to the label’s legendary roster, from the Four Tops and Temptations to modern artists like Boyz II Men.

Most of Caywood’s work revolves around figures set in elaborate old-time rooms filled with comfortable, traditional furniture, adorned with family portraits and other artwork, and contain cozy fireplaces and decorative wallpaper. Caywood’s style lies between the proper primitivism of Grandma Moses’s work and the studied emotionalism in the art of French painters such as Matisse. Like the interior scenes of those artists, Caywood’s paintings could also be described as “refined and eminently civilized,” and, yet, they convey an unsettling strangeness. The perspective of the rooms and the relationships of the figures to each other and their settings hint at concealed emotion and existential isolation. Caywood told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “There’s no ‘wrong’ way to interpret them. I don’t even know what they mean.”

Pops! at the Bell is in its 17th season, explains Augusta Symphony Executive Director Sandra Self. “Music Director Donald Portnoy initiated the Pops series his second year here, in the 1992-1993 season,” she says. “He, along with the Board, initiated the series of three concerts—now four and an encore—to broaden the base, expand the audiences, and it has been very successful. The Pops! at the Bell is set up so that 86 tables for eight people are on the main floor of the hall; these have been sold out, and we have a waiting list, since its inception. However, the encore, initiated this season with Spectrum on February 13, is a repeat and offers table seating: tables of eight for $400, $500 and $600.”

Morris Museum of Art  now thru April 19

She is not so vague in explaining what she sees as the primary motivation behind artmaking: “I believe what forces the ‘child’ out of the ‘nursery’ is pain; pain urging every person to seize the brush and become their own artist and art.” Her pain may originate from a childhood dominated by the high expectations of perfectionist parents—especially her father, an attorney for Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., at the time of his death. He did not approve of Caywood’s dream of majoring in art and forced her to put her plans on hold. After her children were grown, she again asserted her desire to study art, earning a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at age 46. Since then, Caywood has been able to express the “submerged emotional tensions,” so typical of Southern domestic life, to her heart’s content.

Bell Auditorium  February 12 and 13

Spectrum began performing together in the Las Vegas productions “American Superstars” and “Legends in Concert.” This led to their headlining success, including tours of the U.S. and Europe. Their impressive credentials led to the Symphony booking. “We look at what artists are being presented successfully by orchestras around the country, and those who are attracting audiences,” Self explains. “Spectrum has been very successful all over the country, so we wanted to bring them here for Augusta audiences.” For tickets, call 706.826.4705 or visit Tickets are $65 for first balcony, $55 for second balcony and $25 for third balcony, with tables available for the Friday night encore show. (Tables cannot be purchased online.) Both performances begin at 7:30 p.m.. For more information about Spectrum, visit www. by Alison Richter

verge / february / 25



Torch Song Trilogy: Widows & Children First

Rolling on the River: A Casino Night

The award winning play Torch Song Trilogy revolves around the life of Arnold Beckett, a gay, Jewish drag-queen in New York. Le Chat Noir brings the trilogy to its endearing conclusion with the final part: Widows & Children First.

Do you know when to hold’em, know when to fold’em? Live out Kenny Rogers’ famous song during the Augusta Museum of History’s annual Rolling on the River Fundraiser.

Le Chat Noir  February 6 to 14

The play takes up the story a year after the second one ends. The star-crossed Arnold struggles to deal with his troublesome teenage son, his loneliness stemming from the senseless death of his lover, and tension over a looming visit from his mother, who refuses to accept his lifestyle. This all may seem tragic and highly dramatic, but it is achingly funny as well. Harvey Fersteins’s wit and quirky dialogue rends tears, then sends the audience into hysterics. The Le Chat cast matches the script with flawless performances, capturing the convulted dynamics of this unique family with humor and grace. Richard Justice directs the Tony-award winning play and reprises his role as Arnold with local celebrity Debi Ballas as his mother. Doug Joiner returns in the role of Ed. Rounding out the cast, is the young and talented up comer Tyler Bugg, as Arnold’s adopted son. Widows & Children First ends its run on Valentine’s Day, when Le Chat Noir hosts its third annual Cupid’s Cabaret; fast becoming the hottest Valentine’s date in town. Couples are treated to an intimate table for two, sweet and savory victuals, and a bottle of their favorite libation. Treat your loved one to a command performance for romantics; a truly enchanting evening guaranteed to keep you out of the dog house for months. Performances for Widows & Children First are February 6, 7, 12, 13, 14 at 8 pm; and a Sunday matinee on February 8 at 5 pm. For tickets, call the box office at 706.722.3322, Tuesday through Friday 10 am to 4 pm. For details, visit by Krys Bailey and Wylie Graves • photo: Elizabeth Benson

Augusta Museum of History  February 20

“This annual event was held last year for the first time with great success in raising awareness of the Augusta Museum of History for a whole new demographic of benefactors,” explains Nancy Glaser, Augusta Museum of History Executive Director. She is banking on last year’s success to bring together more young professionals in the Central Savannah River Area, continuing to establish and strengthen the Museum’s ties with the younger community and engage them in an introduction to the Museum. This vision allows the museum to keep their finger on the pulse of the younger community. Proceeds from Rolling on the River benefit Augusta Museum of History educational programs, including children’s programming and the Brown Bag History Series Lecture. Event co-chairs of Augusta Museum History Trustees, Roy Chalker and Kim Fairey, hope the event raises the funds needed to continue these programs and help preserve the most significant historical collection in the CSRA, while having a bit of fun in the process. Augusta Museum of History was established in 1937 for the purpose of preserving and sharing the material history of Augusta and the region. From a 10,000 year-old projectile point to a 1914 locomotive, the collection chronicles a rich and fascinating past. Tickets for Rolling on the River are $30 per person or $50 per couple and include complimentary drinks, up-front betting money, and hors d’oeuvres. Guests must be 21 or older; IDs will be checked at the door. Cocktail Attire. For tickets, contact the Augusta Museum of History at 706.722.8454 or by Heather Rankin • photo courtesy of the Augusta Museum of History

26 / february / verge

Because everything you do is a work of art...

Claude Monet

Leonardo da Vinci


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verge / february / 27

good chow /beamie’s brings back the classics When Augusta native Pam Clifton sold Beamie’s At The River almost six years ago and retired to Hilton Head, she had no intentions of returning to the hectic life of food business. Thoughts of her two grandchildren started to pull at her heartstrings, however, and she returned home. After opening Cabana Willie in Fury’s Ferry, Clifton repurchased Beamie’s and dove into the process of restoring it to its original state.

upgrades to the facility and the menu. The restaurant features new furniture and a new bar, as well as a kitchen with a quality facelift. A popular part of the restaurant, its 80-seat patio, is now both heated and air-conditioned. The menu has been restored to include original popular items: oysters on the half-shell, fried shrimp, calamari and homemade crab cakes, and other alternative items for those in the group who don’t care for the fish. Favorite desserts include Key Lime Pie and cheesecake.

Happy Hours downtown - Monday through Friday, 2-7pm. Enjoy two for one drinks, beer specials or any of their many frozen drink specialties. Most impressive is the friendliness and efficiency of the wait staff, something not always found in the typical seafood joint. Clifton says, “We take care of our business like it’s our home. Sometimes we spend more time here than there! We want you to come and enjoy our hospitality. We’re trying to make things bigger and better.”

Beamies has a very tropical atmosphere. According to Clifton, “We wanted to create a sense of when you’re here it feels like you’re somewhere else – not Augusta.” Every item is of equal quality. Beamie’s has one of the happiest

Beamie’s At The River is located at 865 Reynolds Street. Hours are Sunday to Thursday 11 am to 10 pm; Friday and Saturday 11 am to 11 pm. 706-724-6593

Beamie’s began in 1994 as a complementary restaurant to Pam’s first restaurant endeavor, the then four year old Cotton Patch. While others considered it somewhat insane to open a second, completely different themed restaurant, Clifton had good reasoning. Securing the convenient Reynolds Street location would eliminate close competition with her nearby restaurant. In addition was the new menu selection. Whereas Cotton Patch focused on sandwiches and wings, Beamie’s would offer a wide range of seafood and still maintain the casual setting her customers loved. Its funky mascot, a she-crab with eyelashes and lipstick, hints at the equally fun atmosphere where the laid-back, downtown crowd can enjoy a well priced meal. Since returning, Pam has been busy making changes and

cafe femenino / new moon cafe introduces female produced coffee If you’re a serious coffee drinker, there is no better moment than the one when you deeply inhale the aroma of the first cup of the day. But have you ever thought about where your coffee comes from and how it’s produced and who’s making it? Coffee is the second largest traded commodity in the world. Female coffee producers account for 30 percent of the 25 million coffee growers. In Peru, female coffee producers have united and are producing their own coffee brand, Café Femenino. Imported by Organic Products Trading Company, Café Femenino is sold only to companies who are owned by women or have women in upper management positions. New Moon Cafe, through its roasting company Moon Beans, is the only local purveyor of Café Femenino. The Femenino project began with 464 women in Northern Peru. At the first gathering of Women Coffee Producers in 2004 sprang this new idea “separating their coffee from the rest of the production.” Café Femenino’s concept: women produce the coffee, then the consumer plays a key role in giving right back to the earth in which the beans were grown. With the help of organic and Fair Trade premiums, much progress has been made in recent years to improve life in the expanding number of rural coffee growing communities. Improvements range from better diets, improved sanitation, new wet-processing mills, and many, many miles of new roads. Café Femenino’s goal includes improving general standards of living for rural communities, but especially focuses on women’s rights. Out of the Café Femenino coffee initiative was born the Café Femenino Foundation, a social program whose purpose is to support women in their efforts to achieve equality, build social and support networks and earn incomes through the production and sale of their coffee. Café Femenino is distributed to more than 80 roasters who pay a premium above the fair trade price. Through the fair price/fair trade certification program, the coffee producers are guaranteed a minimum and reasonable price for their certified organic products and are able to establish themselves as not only working women but stable individuals. Today, more than 1500 women in Bolivia, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Mexico and Peru are active in the project. Cristi Hubbard, Senior Operations Manager of New Moon, is excited to offer the Café

Femenino brand. As an organic, specialty grade coffee, Café Femenino is left unblended to preserve the uniqueness of its acidity, body, flavor and aroma. “It is a good fit with our current line of signature coffees,” she says. Visit New Moon to delight in the extraordinaire of Café Femenino and take a moment to consider from hence your coffee came. New Moon Café • 1002 Broad Street • Mon – Sat: 7 am to 6 pm; Sun: 9 am to 3 pm Visit to learn more about Café Femenino and the Foundation, or visit to make a donation. Belinda Smith-Sullivan, our Good Chow writer, is a Culinarian and food writer who loves exploring the “off the beaten path” culinary world. Belinda will bring you fun and informative topics on restaurants, chefs, products, places and all things food.

28 / february / verge

verge / february / 29

movies at main monday nights • 6:30 pm augusta main library

friday february 6 outdoors 

First Friday: A Date with Downtown

Downtown Augusta • 5 to 10 pm • free On the First Friday of each month a celebration is held downtown on Artists’ Row. Galleries and studios remain open those evenings to debut new works, street vendors sell their wares, and bands can be heard all over. Augusta’s downtown boasts over 22 live music venues, complemented by numerous locally owned restaurants. We invite you to visit First Friday and return to enjoy our music, food, museums, antiques and attractions. First Friday is a free, monthly, family friendly event in Downtown Augusta.

Friends of the Miller

Broad Street • 5 to 10 pm On First Friday, Friends of the Miller will be in front of Zimmerman Gallery selling tshirts to raise funds for renovations. Tours of the Miller will be given: go to table for details. special 

Hair & Fashion Show

Sky City • 8 pm • free Produced by Modish and Midtown Threds as a fundraiser for the CSRA Humane Society. Donations encouraged. The first fifty guests will receive free door prizes. Must be 21 to enter. Details: Modish at 706.722.1518 or Midtown Threds at 706.821.3111

February 9: Vicky Cristina Barcelona This enchanting film portrays Woody Allen’s quirky masterful writing style as two girlfriends on a summer holiday in Spain become enamored with the same painter. Both are unaware that his ex-wife, with whom he has a tempestuous relationship, is about to re-enter the picture. Rated PG 13, 96 minutes. (2008)

February 16: Man On Wire Director James Marsh captures the daring and thrilling personality of tightrope walker Philippe Petit’s daring, but illegal, high-wire routine performed between New York City’s World Trade Center’s twin towers in 1974, what some consider, “the artistic crime of the century.” Rated PG 13, 94 minutes. (2008)

theatre 

Torch Song Trilogy Part III: Widows and Children First Le Chat Noir • 8 pm • $25 see page 25 for details

live music 

Hookahs & House Music with DJ E Tribeca Buddha Lounge • 9:30 pm

Mix Tape

Soul Bar • 10 pm • Ladies Free / Guys $5 Various dance mix by in house DJ

Jazz Collective

Tribeca Buddha Lounge • 9:45 pm to 1:30 am

Allison Williams and Chance McCoy Daddy Grace

Joe’s Underground • 10 pm • $4

monday february 9 7:30 pm bell auditorium “The grandest circus spectacle east of Vegas” New York Magazine

“Jaw dropping! A whiz-bang family friendly spectacle.” The L.A. Times

Direct from Broadway, Cirque Dreams: Jungle Fantasy comes to Augusta for one night only. Created and directed by Neil Goldberg, this theatrical, acrobatic thriller is inspired by nature’s unpredictable creations that are brought to life by 25 soaring aerialists, spine-bending contortionists, acrobats, jugglers and musicians. From the breathtaking aerial ballet of butterflies to the balancing giraffes, gigantic flowers and trees, this worldclass explosion of athleticism, theatre and imagination will exhilarate the entire family.

saturday february 7 special 

Third Annual Hertage Gala

Marriott Hotel • 6 to 9 pm • $100 The Lucy Craft Laney Museum of Black History hosts the Third Annual Heritage Gala. The Honorable John H. Ruffin, Jr. will serve as keynote speaker with performances by Russell Joel Brown and Lynwood Holmes. Attire is black tie. Reservations: Erica Hampton at 706.724.3576

art 

Morris Museum of Art Annual Print Fair

Morris Museum • 10 am to 3 pm • free This year’s Print Fair features more fine art print dealers than ever. Original art for every budget. film 

Southern Circuit Independent Film: Tru Loved

Imperial Theatre • 7:30 pm • $5 to $8 Meet the Filmmakers at 6:30 pm A teenage daughter of lesbian mothers, Tru struggles as an outsider at her new high school until high school quarterback Lodell takes an interest in her. With surprise plot twists that challenge traditional norms and social identities, Tru Loved explores the themes of love and acceptance that we all seek. theatre 

Torch Song Trilogy Part III: Widows and Children First Le Chat Noir • 8 pm • $25 see page 25 for details

live music 

Abigail Williams • Rose Funeral Burning The Masses • Conducting From The Grave • Breathing Process Sector 7G • 5:30 pm • $12 Jeff Liberty Fox’s Lair

Joe’s Underground • 9 pm • $4

Cirque Dreams: Jungle Fantasy

Bell Auditorium • 7:30 pm • $44 to $54 Tickets: or 706.722.3521

film 

The Dexateens with Tiger Twins & Turf War Sky City • 10 pm • $7

Movies at Main: Vicky Cristina Barcelona

Greene Street Library • 6:30 pm • free Directed by Woody Allen. Rated PG 13 – 96 min

sunday february 8

live music  art 

Adult Artist Workshop: Figure Drawing Part 1

Morris Museum of Art • 1 to 4:30 pm • $80 to $100 Artist David Mascaro leads this three-part drawing workshop focusing on the figure. Appropriate for all skill levels. Members, $80; nonmembers, $100. Includes all materials. Register: 706.828.3867. theatre 

Le Chat Noir • 5 pm • $25 see page 25 for details

special 

Ninth Street Wine Market • 5:30 to 7:30 pm • $10 Tasting of amber and unique wines. Reservations: 706.724.1442

1102 Downtown • 9 pm • free

Torch Song Trilogy Part III: Widows and Children First

monday february 9

Wine Tasting

Mason Jars


Bell Auditorium • 7 pm to 12 am • $125 An elegant celebration of life with proceeds benefiting the American Heart Association. Details: 706.855.5005 or

A young Bangladeshi woman struggles with leaving behind her culture and lifestyle for 1980s London and a loveless arranged marriage, while her beloved sister careens through one adventure to another. PG 13, 102 minutes. (2007)

cirque dreams: jungle fantasy

Tickets range in price from $40 to $50. Tickets are available at the James Brown Arena box office, or by phone at 706.828.7700.

Stillwater Tap Room • 10 pm • $4

Augusta Heart Ball: A Red Hot Affair

February 23: Brick Lane

pipeline / 2.6 to 2.11

By El Sins Fell Angels Sector 7G • 8 pm • $7

tuesday february 10 live music 

Dave Firman

Joe’s Underground • 10 pm • $4

wednesday february 11 special 

An Educational Wine Tasting

The Bee’s Knees • 5:30 pm • $15 Ninth Street Market presents wines that give a “Bang for Your Buck” paired with tapas. Reservations: 706.724.1442

30 / february / verge

pipeline / 2.11 to 2.21 wednesday february 11 special 

Senior Luncheon

Lucy Craft Laney Museum • 11:30 am • $7 On the second Wednesday of each month area seniors and working professionals are invited to enjoy lectures on a variety of topics, while dining on food from our city’s finest restaurants. Speaker: Dr. Mack Bowman. RSVP: Emily Capers at 706.724.3576 live music 

Dr. iLL • Dale Baker • iLL-Legit Records Mark Deez • Get Money Ent.

theatre 

Torch Song Trilogy Part III: Widows and Children First Le Chat Noir • 5 pm • $25 see page 25 for details

live music 

For details, see page 23. Tickets: www. or 706.722.3521 Official After Party for Disturbed The Loft • after the concert

thursday february 12 special 

From Humble Beginnings to Promising Futures Davidson Fine Arts School • 7 pm • $3 to $5

A historical retrospective of the influence of African Americans in the 20th and 21st centuries celebrated through music, dance, drama, and multimedia presentations. Details: symphony

Pops! at the Bell: Spectrum Magic of Motown Bell Auditorium • 7:30 pm • $25 to $75

Four incredibly talented voices bring The Magic of Motown to life. Tickets:

Tuesday’s Music Live: Jinha Park, Pianist

The Dead Kings • The Festered Graveyard Boulevard • The Villians Insides Out • The Chiltons • Fletche Sector 7G • 5 pm • $10

St Paul’s River Room • noon 706.722.3463 or

We The Kings • The Maine • The Cab There For Tomorrow • Versa Emerge Club Hollywood • 7 pm • $18

Joe’s Underground • 10 pm • $4

DJ Kadillac

live music 


wednesday february 18 live music 

Tribeca Buddha Lounge • 9 pm

Bleeding Counterfeit with Hog Slobber

Solidarity • Ambush Sector 7G • 8 pm • $8

80’s Night Soul Bar • 9 pm • Ladies Free / Guys $5

Sky City • 10 pm • $5

Keith Gregory

80s music all night long!

Joe’s Underground • 9 pm • $2

friday february 13

Sky City • 10 pm • $8 to $10 • funk

Disturbed • Sevendust • Sundred James Brown Arena • 7 pm • $35.50

live music 

special 

From Humble Beginnings to Promising Futures Davidson Fine Arts School • 7 pm • $3 to $5 See Feb 12 for details

Paine College Ninth Annual Scholarship Masked Ball Marriott Hotel • 8 pm • $100

Entertainment by Harold Melvin’s BlueNotes. Funds raised from this ball provide scholarships for students to take advantage of experiential learning such as study abroad, internships, and conference presentations through curricula that are rich, rigorous and relevant. Tickets: 706.821.8318 or symphony 

Pops! at the Bell: Spectrum Magic of Motown Bell Auditorium • 7:30 pm • $25 to $75

Four incredibly talented voices bring The Magic of Motown to life. Tickets:

thursday february 19

Bayou Bleu Sky City • 10:30 pm • $5

live music 

Joe’s Underground • 10 pm • $4


Fox’s Lair

saturday february 14 special 

Valentines Wine Dinner Marriott • $79

Le Chat Noir • 8 pm • $25 see page 25 for details

Despised Icon • Carnifex • Beneath the Massacre • Neuraxis • Plasma Rifle • Virulence Club Hollywood • 6 pm • $14 Paul Arrowood

Joe’s Underground • 10 pm • $2

friday february 20

Details: Ninth Street Market at 706.724.1442

special 

Third Annual Cupid’s Cabaret Le Chat Noir • 8 pm • $85

Includes two tickets to the show, intimate table for two, light sweet & savory hors d’ouevres, bottle of wine, champagne, or beverages of equal value, and a long stem rose. Tickets: 706.722.3322 or

Valentine’s Party

Tribeca BuddhaLounge Party features a lingerie show

theatre 

Torch Song Trilogy Part III: Widows and Children First

The Metro Spirit’s 20th Anniversary Concert Series: Unknown Hinson Sky City • 10 pm • $10 to $12

Impulse Ride

theatre 

Torch Song Trilogy Part III: Widows and Children First Le Chat Noir • 8 pm • $25 see page 25 for details

live music 

Colonel Bruce Hampton and the Quark Alliance Sky City • 10 pm • $8 to $10 Pit Boss Joe’s Underground • 9 pm • $4

sunday february 15 special 

Rolling on the River Casino Night Fundraiser Augusta History Museum • 7 to 10 pm • $30 to $50

This year’s event features authentic gambling tables and dealers with a Pit Boss, and allows guests to enjoy an evening of Blackjack, Craps, Roulette, and Texas Hold ’em. A prize auction will culminate the evening’s festivities as the top winners have a chance to spend their big “winnings” during a live auction. Tickets include complimentary drinks, up-front betting money, and hors d’oeuvres. Tickets are available at the Augusta Museum of History during regular operating hours or at the door on the evening of February 20th. Guests must be 21 or older. Cocktail attire. Details: 706.722.8454 or www. art 

Art at Lunch: The Making of a Theatrical Production

Morris Museum of Art • noon • $10 to $14 Director Debi Ballas and musical director Les Regan discuss how the latest Augusta Players musical was produced, and cast members perform scenes from the play. Members, $10; nonmembers, $14. Lunch by Roux’s Catering. Register by February 18: 706.828.3867.

Music at the Morris: Denver Oldham

Morris Museum of Art • 2 pm • free International pianist Denver Oldham performs selections by American composers.

Black Collar Comedy Tour

Bell Auditorium • 7 pm • $33 to $40 Starring Don “DC” Curry, J. Anthony Brown, Damon Williams, Pierre and JJ. Tickets: www. art 

Adult Artist Workshop: Figure Drawing Part 2

david swanagin opening reception

thursday february 12 • 5 to 8 pm • sacred heart David Swanagin, formerly of Augusta, is a self-taught oil painter specializing in mood-evoking landscapes and interiors. Through light and shadows, David presents realistic views resulting in appealing contemporary works. Wanting viewers to feel an emotional resonance in his work, David attempts to incorporate a sense of connection between the artist and the scene. “Most importantly to me, and really the basis of my work, is strong shadow and light. I think it makes a scene much more powerful. If I can convey a sense of place and how it makes me feel, then I think I’ve succeeded as an artist.” The reception is open to the public. The exhibit runs through March 31, 2009.

Morris Museum of Art • 1 to 4:30 pm • $80 to $100 • See February 8 for details

monday february 16 film 

Movies at Main: Man on Wire

Greene Street Library • 6:30 pm • free Directed by James Marsh. Rated: PG13, 94 min

tuesday february 17 special 

Stovall Barnes House Grand Opening

1211 Greene Street • 11 am • free Grand opening and tour of the recently rehabilitated Stovall-Barnes House, built in 1860 by Bolling Anthony Stovall, a prominent Augusta cotton broker. In recent years, the house suffered from neglect and vagrancy. See its transformation into upscale residential apartments.

live music 

Southern Soul & Song: Dailey & Vincent Imperial Theatre • 7:30 pm • $12.50 to $35 With their debut in early 2008, Dailey & Vincent is a powerful new ensemble steeped in bluegrass and country music traditions. Co-leaders Jamie Dailey and Darrin Vincent have already had a profound impact on much of the best modern bluegrass via their contributions to such estimable performers as Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder, and Rhonda Vincent & The Rage. Tickets:

Lexie’s Legacy CD Release Show

Sky City • 8 pm • $5 Ajustmentz • L.I.E. • Suhgarim • Shotgun Opera

TFS Fave Sector 7G • 8 pm • $5

Brian McGee and Hollow Speed Stillwater Tap Room • 10 pm • $4

Edison Project Joe’s Underground • 10 pm • $4

saturday february 21 sports 

Extreme Fight Night IV

Bell Auditorium • 7:30 pm • $9 to $79 Details :

verge / february / 31 saturday february 21 art 

Young Artists Workshop: Cartoon Drawing

Morris Museum of Art • 1 to 4:30 pm • $10 to $15 The illustrator Jay Jacobs teaches participants how to draw cartoon characters. Appropriate for ages 10 and up. Register by February 16: 706.828.3867 film 

Poison Peach Film Showcase

Le Chat Noir • 7 pm • $8 This second annual film showcase presents the film creations of Augusta area filmmakers. 7 pm: The Mark by Christopher Forbes; 8:30 pm: Sons of God by Stephen Gilliam; 9 pm: live comedy by Geoff Franqui; 10 pm: Short Film Showcase. 18 + only live music 

Lokal Loudness Choice Awards

Sky City • 8 pm • $5 Chairleg • Jacob Beltz • Allison Foster • 48Volt

Tony Williams & The Blues Express

live music 

Brightwood • Floral Terrace • Young and Divine • 2 Locals Sector 7G • 7 pm • $6

sunday february 22 art 

Adult Artist Workshop: Figure Drawing Part 3

Morris Museum of Art • 1 to 4:30 pm • $80 to $100 • See February 8 for details

monday february 23 special 

Davidson Vocal Music Concerts

Davidson Fine Arts School • 7 pm • $3 to $10 A concert featuring Davidson Treble Chorus, Men’s Chorus, Women’s Chorus, and the Davidson Chorale. Tickets available at the door or by reservation: 706.823.6924 ext. 10 film 

Movies at Main: Brick Lane

Greene St Library • 6:30 pm • free Directed by Sarah Gavron (2007). Rated PG13 live music 

Dave Firman

Stillwater Tap Room • 10 pm • $4

John Kolbeck

Joe’s Underground • 10 pm • $4

Jeff Liberty

Joe’s Underground • 10 pm • $2

friday february 27 theatre 

Into the Woods

Imperial Theatre • 8 pm • $15 to $40 An ambivalent Cinderella? A blood-thirsty Little Red Ridinghood? A Prince Charming with a roving eye? A Witch who raps? They’re all among the absurd characters in The Augusta Player’s presentation of James Lapine and Stephen Sondheim’s fractured fairy tale. One of Sondheim’s most popular works, this timeless yet relevant piece is a rare modern classic. Tickets: live music 

Fourth Anniversary Fundraiser: POA • TheRadarCinema • Gutwrench Sector 7G • 7 pm • $8

Chris Ndeti

tuesday february 24 special 

Orchestra Pre-Festival Concert

Davidson Fine Arts School • 6 pm • $3 to $5 A concert of music by the Davidson Orchestra .

Band Pre-Festival Concert

Davidson Fine Arts School • 7:15 pm • $3 to $5 A concert of music by the Davidson Band.

Downtown Connects

Casa Blanca Cafe • 5:30 pm • free We are excited to be holding the first Downtown Connects of 2009 at the new Casa Blanca Café in the White’s Building. We are asking everyone to bring either an appetizer, a dessert, or a beverage. Downtown Connects is a networking opportunity in a casual setting, a great way to meet other downtown business owners, residents, and supporters. Find out how you can get more involved in your local Downtown Augusta Alliance. live music 

Brandon Reeves

Joe’s Underground • 10 pm • $4

saturday february 28 special 

art 

Agnes Markwalter Youth Art Competition and Exhibition Opening Reception Gertrude Herbert • 4:30 to 5:30 pm • free

thursday february 26 art 

Broad Street • 4 pm to 1 am • $5 The First Broad Street Bar Crawl (see sidebar)

Project Manga: A Celebration of the Japanese Drawing Technique

Greene Street Library • 2:30 to 4:30 pm • free Free classes with a Manga drawing contest for ages 12 to 23. Art Projects to be displayed at the Downtown Library. Prizes will be awarded . Register: 706.821.2600 theatre 

Into the Woods

Is God Still Working Miracles

Bell Auditorium • 7 pm • $28 This play is a work to inspire and give hope to all, young and old. It’s a gospel stage play about life, it’s ups and downs, decisions made and the consequences of those decisions. Tickets: www. live music 

Don’t Kill The Freshman • The Decade 11 Spirits • Agnes • Roselyn • Collin Valley Of Mediggo • Sludgebomb

715 Broad Street • 9:45 and 10:45 am

Free Morris Museum Tour

Morris Museum of Art • 2:30 pm • free

John Kolbeck

Jacob Beltz

Cotton Patch • 7 to 11 pm • free

Joe’s Underground • 10 pm • $2

friday march 6 outdoors 

First Friday

Downtown Augusta • 5 to 10 pm • free literary 

Jessica Baptiste Book Signing

Book Tavern • 7 to 9 pm • free Jessica Baptiste, a graduate of USC Aiken and former news reporter for the Augusta Focus, will be signing her first published novel Call Her Saffron. sports 

3live music 

Miss Tess and The Bon Ton Parade Stillwater Tap Room • 10 pm • $4 Joe’s Underground • 10 pm • $4

every week

tuesdays 

Dr. John Fisher

Fox’s Lair • 9 pm • free • Irish session

Open Mic Night

wednesdays 

Fox’s Lair • free

Wednesday DJ Dance Party Sky City • 10 pm • $2

DJ On Point

saturdays 

The Loft • 10 pm • free

ongoing exhibitions To Seek & Obtain: Recent Acquisitions Morris Museum • Now thru February 22

John Kingerlee: Recent Works

Gertrude Herbert • Now thru February 27

Sam Burston Fine Arts Exhibition Lucy Craft Laney • Now thru February

Inside/Out: Private World of Edith Caywood Morris Museum • now through April 19

A Community That Heals

Augusta Museum of History • Ongoing

95 rock ‘n’ ramble on broad saturday february 28 registration: 4 to 7 pm cost: $5 start: booth on 11th Street between metro coffeehouse and 1102

Sector 7G • 6 pm • $8

Gravity Burn • Greedy White Citizens Enter the Era • New Effect • Shotgun Opera Sky City • 9 pm • $5

Jeff Liberty Band

Joe’s Underground • 9pm • $4

Electric Voodoo Blues

Tribeca Buddha Lounge • 9:45 pm to 1:30 am

sunday march 1 special 

Miller Theatre’s 69th Birthday Bash

Miller Theatre • 3 pm • free Come help us cut the cake for the Miller’s 69th Birthday! Bring your cameras. 706.737.4416

Into the Woods

theatre 

Imperial Theatre • 3 pm • $15 to $40 See Feb 27. Tickets:

tuesday march 3 live music 

Terra Cognita: Sam Gilliam

Morris Museum of Art • 6 to 8 pm • free Painter and sculptor Sam Gilliam discusses his life and career.

live music 

Red Headed Step Child

95 Rock & Ramble

Joe’s Underground • 10 pm • $4

wednesday february 25

thursday march 5

James Brown Arena • 7 pm • $19 to $71 Details:

Stone Dogs

sundays 

Worship at The Well

Harlem Globetrotters

Fox’s Lair

Imperial Theatre • 8 pm • $15 to $40 See Feb 27. Tickets:

Joe’s Underground • 10 pm • free

every week

3live music 

The Brothels

saturday decemb

Joe’s Underground • 9 pm • $4

pipeline / 2.21 to 3.6

Tuesday’s Music Live: Marina Alexandra, Guitarist St Paul’s River Room • noon Reservations: 706.722.3463

Get ready to rumble down Broad Street (or stagger as the evening wears on) for the first real pub crawl in downtown Augusta. Eleven stops, all celebrating the fact that Yuengling beer is now on tap! Here’s what you should do for maximum enjoyment: 1. Go by the booth to get your arm band and official passport. If you’re lucky, you’ll also receive a free Rock - n- Ramble t-shirt. 2. The arm band lets you slide by the cover charge at each bar: Joe’s Underground, The Playground, The Loft, Club Rehab, Firehouse, Sky City, 1102 Bar and Grill, Metro Coffeehouse & Bar, The Soul Bar, Stillwater Taproom, and Tribeca. 3. Get your passport stamped at each bar. Turn it in at the end of your crawl and you could win some pretty incredible prizes including: Yuengling Neon Signs, Guitar Hero gaming station, a Harley Davidson Jacket, concert tickets, subwoofers, a two year supply of BC Headache Powders and more. Get updates at 4. Determine your designated driver for the evening. 5. Prepare in advance for the inevitable hangover. Tried and true methods? Sleep, lots of water, aspirin, excercise and Bloody Marys for breakfast.

32 / february / verge

verge / february / 33

found in translation / the lyrics of micah dale swenson Sandcastles by Micah Dale Swenson If you never tell the truth, never tell the truth, never tell the truth, No one will know who you are. They’ll always have something for you. If you always tell the truth, always tell the truth, always tell the truth, A picture of virtue you’ll be, but your life will be nothing to see. (refrain) This is my body. It’s turning to nothing right in front of your eyes. This is my body. It’s turning to nothing right in front of your eyes. If you start to feel afraid, start to feel afraid, start to feel afraid, Fear not the demons at hand. There’s something watching over you. If you’re delicately made, delicately made, delicately made, This town is a castle of sand. It’s ready to devour you. (refrain) You count to ten and try to take a breath. You try to picture what you wrestle with. It’s only broken ‘cause you built it, but you don’t need help from me. If you follow me down, follow me down, follow me down, Just as the sheep to the shearer. This is what you are likely to hear… If you never run away, always stay the same, never try to change, Always too close to the shore. Then whatch’ya in the water for? If you give your heart away, every single day, tell me what you say! You’re bound to be bitter and old. You’ll find yourself lonely, and old. (refrain) You count to ten and try to take a breath. You try to picture what you wrestle with. It’s only broken ‘cause you built it, but you don’t need help from me. © Edison Project

A punch in the face, hot coffee on your pants, anything but a guitar pick falling on the floor in the middle of playing a song. But that’s what happened as Micah Dale Swenson played “Sandcastles” for me. He leaned over to grab the jagged piece of plastic, cleared his throat and continued in his regretful, emollient voice. The song haunts my ears as a tacit reminder that someone, somewhere, is walking in limbo, while Micah secures his boots with a tightrope. verge: What is the general meaning of this song to you? mds: Sandcastles paints a picture about bad habits that have dug in too deep, and someone that is begging for help to be rid of them. Secretly drinking too much or secretly doing other things that have a great effect on every aspect of their lives. verge: The first line starts, “If you never tell the truth,” sounds like a reflection on a person lying to themselves? mds: If you’re always lying, “no one will know who you are.” If you always tell the truth, you’ll be seen as honest, but your life might not be something to be proud of. Each verse leads to “This is my body. It’s turning to nothing right in front of your eyes.” Like crying out, ”Why me?!” and fixing all of these things. The only reason they were broken is because you had done some bad building in the past. verge: Was there a particular spark that inspired you to write “Sandcastles?” mds: I’ll never forget what I was doing. I was working on an Edison Project stencil. The TV was on, but muted, because I had just gotten off the telephone. As, I went put the sound back on, in the silence of that moment, I heard the words and everything, (plays guitar) “If you never tell the truth, never tell the truth…” verge: So, I’m sure you get excited to play this song in concert mds: Yes! Rino (Mendoza, guitarist for Edison) wrote this really amazing Dick Dale style, surfer solo and I was so excited to have that sort of rock in my song. It was such a natural fit, and to pay homage to my parent’s era was awesome.

verge: How are your songs formed? Lyrics first, or based around the melody and guitar riffs? mds: It’s always got to be something a little quirky on the guitar; just a little off. I’m almost always going to have a couple of built in guitar riffs, and everything else will be built around those. Then I’ll write down the lyrics. I will take extended breaks, so as to not get burnt out on a line or an idea. Then, just the music for an entire week. Then, come back to the lyrics until I am satisfied. verge: As a music theorist, do you feel the best songs that you write are those that come to you in five minutes or those that have natural scruples? mds: I have the most fun with those parts of songs that jump out of the bag at you. Sometimes, they attack you. But, the whole song didn’t come to you. You get paint balled. You don’t get a roller-painted wall with tape and double coats. They are little zings of inspiration that encourage other little zings of inspiration, and then once you have the posts dug in, you build around them. verge: Do you remember the day you wrote the song? mds: It was hot as ten summers. I had both doors open, singing and dancing around, being all excited. When I finished the song, my brother had just gotten home from work. He walked in without even taking his tie off…and it just didn’t work. One thing I have to say about playing a song is you have to make sure, for absolute certain, that the song is ready and that the listener wants to be there. Of course, I did “Sandcastles” that first time all wrong. verge: And do you plan on playing “Sandcastles” at your next show? mds: Always. You can catch Micah Dale and the Edison Project at almost any and every venue in Downtown Augusta. Sing along to “Sandcastles” at, and remember to always keep yourself humming. by Jacob Beltz • portrait: Eliabeth Benson

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printed matter / cornelia funke What if the world you created when you wrote a story found substance and weight? What if its characters became real people who could spring forth from the page? What if the story continued even after you wrote “The End?” Welcome to the world of Mo and Meggie Folchart and the mind of one of the best children’s authors in the modern era. Cornelia Funke first came to my attention when she published The Thief Lord, a tale of runaway children in Venice who become entangled in a plot to steal some mysterious objects. It was terribly enchanting, reminded me greatly of Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury, and made me very appreciative of my nieces, without whom I would never have discovered it. When she released Inkheart, a treacherous tale where reading aloud can be quite dangerous, I was quick to grab and devour every word. I suppose it’s easy to see why a seller of books would love a story about a binder of books whose voice makes real what before had only been ink and paper. How can I not love a character like Mo whose delight for a book isn’t limited to its words, but extends to how we cover its nakedness? Or Meggie, whose existence is measured and marked by the books she knows? Inkheart, along with its companions, Inkspell and Inkdeath, are very character driven books. Whether villainous at heart like Capricorn and the Magpie, or noble, yet flawed like Dustfinger and the Inkweaver, Cornelia Funke’s lively and complicated individuals keep the reader captivated, delighted, and certain to read each and every word – just not out loud! Problematically, the language of the book cries out for vocalization. If you have children, the books make particularly wonderful bedtime reading. Once it occurs to them there is a distinct possibility their favourite character might magically appear whilst you are reading, your child may beg for you to read one more chapter every night. I was slightly disappointed to discover I did not have this talent (though if you listen to my nieces tell the tale, my sister might have something close to it). It might be a good idea if you read a bit ahead as the novels contain some darkness and violence which might cause nightmares in those prone to them. But there is also redemption and goodness and love, though with all the marks of reality bearing down upon them as they unfold in complex and unexpected ways. Perhaps one of the reasons I love this series so much is because Ms. Funke does not shy from the more difficult aspects of life. Sometimes it seems that children’s books are written for those who should not know suffering nor be exposed to any ambiguity in the disposition of their morals. Yet most children know suffering and are exposed to moral ambiguity with a regularity that should make us blush. Since we cannot avoid the presence of these dilemmas in our children’s lives, we must certainly help equip them to deal with them. In Inkheart and its sequels,

like all great children’s literature, these complexities are admirably exposed and examined. When I first read these books, I thought Ms. Funke must be Italian. The Thief Lord is set in Venice and a great deal of Inkheart takes place in Italy. A reader should read, and if I had I would have seen “Translated from the German by Anthea Bell” on the title page of the latter. Translations are tricky things indeed, and many good stories are ruined by a bad translation whilst many tales are improved when a superior translation appears (Robert Fagles’ translation of The Odyssey springs to mind). We are very fortunate indeed to have Ms. Bell as the translator of these novels, for she is surely one of the best. If you ever read Asterix or Wladyslaw Szpilman’s memoir The Pianist then you are already familiar with her skill at taking one language and rendering it with perfect beauty into another. With the same dedication, she helps Tintenherz metamorphose into Inkheart. If only the same could be said of the film. There is a reason that when a book becomes a film they call it an adaptation. With such different mediums, it can be quite difficult to take all the elements of thought and imagination in a book and craft them into a visual revelation. So it is safe to nearly always expect changes encompassing characters (who may be amalgamated), sequence of events, plot devices, etcetera. Some books are entirely transformed (Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? becomes Bladerunner) while others are merely reformed (Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings). With varying degrees of success, good books have become good films and, occasionally, a mediocre book becomes a great film (The Last of the Mohicans). Unfortunately, more common is the failure of the film to adequately portray the glories of the written word. In the case of Inkheart, it is an abysmal adaption which unnecessarily changes so many features of the story that a separate chronicle would be required to catalogue them all. So if you have seen the film, whether you enjoyed it or hated it, take pleasure or solace in knowing three tomes of treasure await your eyes and mind. Next Month: One year of Printed Matter! David Hutchison is the proprietor of the Book Tavern, located at 1026 Broad Street. David is best known for his unique ability to match the perfect book to a customer’s personality and being a veritable walking encyclopedia of literary works.

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For the Love of the City: A study of Nehemiah The story of how a gracious God used one man to change a city.

Sundays at 9 & 10:45am • 716 Broad St. (childcare provided at 10:45)

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past times / old government house

The Old Government House at 432 Telfair Street once occupied the entire south side of the 400 block. In the 1850s, Green H. Jordan began subdividing and selling lots on the east and west sides of the property. A further strip of land on the east was sold to the City of Augusta in 1957 in order to build Gordon Highway. A portion of the west part of the original block was restored and redeveloped by Historic Augusta in the late 1970s and early 1980s as Courthouse Square, onto which six endangered homes were moved in an effort to encourage the preservation of the area. This project included the creation of Courthouse Lane, paved with cobblestones.

1801 Contractor Lindsey Coleman constructed a two- 1954 story, brick, Federal-style building to be used as the Richmond County Courthouse and seat of local government.

The Junior League of Augusta acquired the building and used it as its headquarters and as a reception facility.



Former Mayor Samuel Hale purchased the courthouse and converted it into a residence. During his ownership, recessed wings were added along with stuccoed walls and window trim, changing the appearance of the home to the Regency style.


The home was acquired by Paul Fitzsimmons, an extensive Georgia planter and Charleston shipping magnate.


James Gardner, editor of the Augusta Constitutionalist, lived here with his wife Martha. During their tenure, the iron portico was added and the mantels, all but one door, and door moldings were changed to Greek Revival style. The home was purchased for Martha by her father, Green H. Jordan, of Milledgeville.


Massilon P. Stovall, who was a cotton broker, bought the house.


James J. Gregg, owner of the Graniteville Mill in

South Carolina, acquired the building.


The Murphey family occupied the home for 77 years. First owned by shoe merchant Edmund T. Murphey, it passed to his son Dr. Edmund Eugene Murphey and his family.

The Junior League of Augusta donated the Old Government House to Historic Augusta, Inc., an organization which they helped to found in 1965. Historic Augusta used the building as their organizational headquarters until the late 1970s when the group sold it to a development firm.


The City of Augusta purchased the building and hired VGR Architects, PA, to rehabilitate it into a reception hall.


The Old Government House is managed by Augusta’s Recreation and Parks Department. It is used as a special events facility and is a popular location for wedding receptions and bridal portraits. Julia Jackson is the Programs and Marketing Director for Historic Augusta, Inc., a non-profit organization whose mission is to preserve historically or architecturally significant structures and sites in Augusta and Richmond County. photos: Elizabeth Benson

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the monumental history of greene street / 04 Signers Monument 1848 location

/ 500 Block of Greene Street designed by / Robert French dedicated on / July 4, 1848

The Signers Monument is a granite obelisk that was erected in 1848 to recognize three Georgians who signed the Declaration of Independence. The 50 foot tall pointed pillar, built at the location of the original City Hall and initially surrounded by a metal railing, sits in the center of the 500 block of Greene Street directly in front of the Augusta Municipal Building. Beneath it lies the remains of two of the three Georgia signers, George Walton and Lymon Hall. The remains of signer Button Gwinnett were never found therefore were not able to be placed underneath the monument. The monument, which bears on its south side a marble plate with a raised engraving of the coat of arms of Georgia as well as the names of the three signers, was dedicated on July 4, 1848.

The oration was pronounced by Judge William T. Gould with Masonic

ceremonies being conducted by Georgia lodge Grand Master William C. Dawson. by John Cannon • original sketch by Alex McCain, III editor’s note: For the next several months, verge will highlight the history of the monuments that line the grassy expanse in the center of Greene Street. The first monument erected in the median was the Signer’s Monument (in front of the courthouse) in 1848, sixty two years after Greene Street was laid out. Over time, Greene Street has become a walking tribute of our community’s contributions and legacy.

explore downtown’s unique spots / frog hollow general store “Climb on in” Ray Shackelford warmly greets a customer as he bends over to find a set of green drinking glasses for another. Ray’s accompanying grin captures the warmth that permeates Frog Hollow General Store which sits on downtown’s border. Ray’s greeting jokingly refers to the obstacle course customers have to navigate right now due to the road construction right next door. Despite the mess, he’s confident good things are around the corner St. Sebastian Way extends, connecting the medical community to Broad Street. It was almost thirty years ago that traffic was directed away from heart of downtown Augusta; about the same time the life of downtown began to dwindle. Many downtown businesses hoping that commuters might slow down and enjoy all downtown Augusta has to offer. It’s worth navigating the construction to explore Frog Hollow General Store, a hobby turned business for Ray and his wife Brenda. In 1976, Ray began Wreaker Stuff, a successful wrecking truck business that sold trucks and equipment to companies. The couple traveled extensively for the business and always came back with a truck load of antiques from auctions, garage sales and random things found on the drive home. Frog Hollow General Store became the repository for their finds and customers, the beneficiaries.

Ray smiles again with a glint of humor in his eyes, as he describes the type of stuff Frog Hollow offers: “It’s shabby chic.” The key is to enter the shop without any preconceived notion as to what to buy and you’ll uncover a gold mine throughout the sprawling store. Cast-iron pans and hooks to lawn furniture and trinkets are tucked among vintage trinkets to antique collectables. I even saw a framed Def Leppard poster for $15! Everyone loves a good deal, but the greatest value is that the items sold here have their own story and history that allow people to share with others. Frog Hollow General Store • 1472 Broad Street Monday thru Friday: 10 am to 5 pm

by Heather Rankin

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best of the lokal scene / a very lexie weekend

lokal loudness choice awards expands to two night party and the nominees are.... The 2009 Choice Awards consists of sixteen awards with five nominees in each. Fans vote for their favorites online at Though the nominees are interesting in their own right, what we found even more intriquing are the categories. Each is named after a person or band that has played an important role in Augusta’s music scene or has an Augusta connection. We thought you might be intrigued too:

1 | Dixie Dregs Award for Favorite Lokal Band named after: fusion rock band Dixie Dregs, a group which originated in Augusta as Dixie Grit by guitarist Steve Morse and bassist Andy West. The band put out several popular instrumental albums from 1975 until adding vocals on 1982’s industry standard. Morse would go on to play in the band Kansas before settling in Deep Purple. ‘09 Nominees: 48Volt | Chairleg | Edison Project | Shotgun Opera | Veara

2 | Brandon Layton Award for Favorite All Ages Lokal Band named after: young bassist Brandon Layton, a Lakeside High School student. Sadly, Layton died in an automobile accident on Riverwatch Parkway in 2003. ‘09 Nominees: Chairleg | Say Vandelay | Shotgun Opera | Sick Sick Sick | Veara

3 | Science Friction Award for Favorite New Lokal Band named after: the late 80’s Graniteville, SC, rock trio Science Friction, one of the first area rock bands to gain a popular following by performing mainly original material and known for their fun rock shows and their list of Battle of the Bands victories. ‘09 Nominees: 48 Volt | Dew Hickies | Language Arts | Suns Collide | Turf War

4 | Swanee Quintet Award for Favorite Lokal Christian or Gospel Band named after: long-time legendary gospel band The Swannee Quintet started in the 50’s, performed in the Apollo Theater and Madison Square Garden and was one of James Brown’s favorite opening acts.

here’s the skinny what’s it about: Lokal Loudness presents its annual Choice Awards for 2009 during the first “A Very Lexie Weekend.” what’s new this year: This year, The Choice Awards is included in a benefit for Lexie’s Legacy, a scholarship fund in memory of John “Stoney” Cannon’s daughter Lexie. On Friday, the Lexie’s Legacy CD will be released (copy included with your cover) and the Choice Awards are on the second. the when and where: February 20 and 21 • both shows at Sky City (1157 Broad Street) • doors open at 8 pm who’s definitely playing: For the CD Release Party, we’ve got L.I.E., Ajustmentz, Suhgarim and Shotgun Opera. For the 2009 Choice Awards: Chairleg, Jacob Beltz, Allison Foster and 48Volt why you should go: A two night party for ten bucks gets you a free CD, rocking music and you’ll be the first to know who’s number one in Augusta? Plus all the door cover goes to Lexie’s Legacy! The real question is: why shouldn’t you go? who’s on the lexie’s legacy cd: 48Volt, Ajustments, Allison Foster, Billy S, Bleeding Counterfeit, Dew Hickies, Chairleg, G-City Rockers, L.I.E., NoStar, Suhgarim. Shotgun Opera, Signal 18, Tommy OD & the Survivors, Will McCranie & more.

‘09 Nominees: Eleventhour | Eryn Eubanks & the Family Fold | Godspeed Joseph Christie Band | Swanee Quintet

5 | Dorian Tauss Award for Favorite Lokal CD named after: the late Studio South engineer Dorian Tauss. In addition to engineering sessions for James Brown and Edwin McCain, Tauss turned the knobs for then up and coming Augusta bands such as Symon Sezz, Science Friction, and Kingthursday. ‘09 Nominees: 12 Bands of Christmas Six | Chairleg : Determinat | Sick Sick Sick: Charles Street Dew Hickies: Codger Rock | Joe Graves & the Dirty Left Hand: We’ve Hit Ground

6 | 1,000 Miles Award for Favorite Lokal Song named for: one of Augusta’s more popular independent songs, People Who Must’s “1,000 Miles”. The song saw airplay on area radio stations and during regular rotation hours on Channel Z. ‘09 Nominees: 48 Volt: Girls of West Texas | 48 Volt: Lights on the Boulevard | Chairleg: Mecha | Joe Graves & the Dirty Left Hand: 1965 | Say Vandelay: Life of the Living Dead

7 | Paul M. Colohan, Sr. Award for Favorite Lokal Male Artist named after: the late Paul M. Colohan, a jazz drummer whose career included performing in the Washington D.C and Augusta areas. Colohan’s love for music would continue through sons Kelly and Steve and grandson Collin previously of Veara. ‘09 Nominees: Brian Allen | Carey Murdock | Joe Graves | Micah Swenson | Ryan Gay

8 | Kat Turner Award for Favorite Lokal Female Artist named after: 80’s and 90’s Augusta songstress Kat Turner. With her gritty yet soulful voice and ability to mix country and rock, Turner was Augusta’s Americana artist before the term was even coined. In 1995 Turner released her sole Augusta CD Stages. ‘09 Nominees: Allison Foster | Brittany Harrell | Eryn Eubanks | Tara Scheyer | Tracy Steele

9 | Robbie Ducey Award for Favorite Lokal Solo Artist named after: the Robbie Ducey Band’s namesake. Ducey has been performing locally and regionally since the 60’s fronting several bands before forming the Robbie Ducey Band, a group that has explored styles such as rock, southern rock, and the blues. ‘09: Allison Foster | Billy S | Jacob Beltz | John Krueger | Will McCranie

10 | Steve Cheeks Award for Favorite Lokal Vocalist named after: Steve Cheeks, former front man for such bands as Mr. Fun, The Knuckleheads, and The Steverinos. As proficient on bass and keyboards as he is on vocals, Cheeks has also produced many area and national acts. ‘09 Nominees: Brian Panowich (48Volt) | Dave Mercer (Shotgun Opera) Joe Graves (Dirty Left Hand) | Larry Sprowls (Chairleg) | Luke Scasny (Say Vandelay)

11 | Reed Scott Award for Favorite Lokal Miscellaneous Instrument named after: Reed Scott aka Augusta reporter Scott Hudson. Before becoming a news hound, Hudson was the leader of Augusta band Optimod and a driving force behind Lokal Loudness moving from print to online media source. ‘09 Nominees: Dale Lowe (L.I.E.) | Eric Kinlaw (Shaun Piazza Band) | Henry Wynn III (Shaun Piazza Band) | Matt Sharpe (Say Vandelay) | Scott Terry

12 | Matthew Keenan Award for Favorite Lokal Guitarist named after: the late South Carolina guitarist Matthew Keenan, formerly of popular 90’s area rock band Symon Sezz. Formed out of the nucleus of fledgling band Kaos, symon Sezz would release two popular local CDs as well as fan favorite bar song “Gimme.” ‘09 Nominees: Billy Hickey (Chairleg) | Chris Peoples (Say Vandelay) Michael Baideme | Patrick Bambrick (Veara) | Sam Greenwald (Shotgun Opera)

13 | Chris Hardy Award for Favorite Lokal Bassist named after: Chris Hardy, former bassist for Augusta bands Nervous Boy and Sylvia’s Advice and one of Augusta’s top music instructors and musicians ‘09 Nominees: Dave Newhall (48Volt) | Jo Bone (Shotgun Opera) | Jonny Mitchell (Say Vandelay) | Micah Swenson (Edison Project) | Ryan Griffis (Chairleg)

14 | Chris Watkins Award for Favorite Lokal Drummer named after: the late Chris Watkins, drummer for Augusta band Dogwood and several other area groups, until his passing in 1999 from a heart ailment. ‘09 Nominees: Brian Allen | Brian Caplette (Shotgun opera) | Brittany Harrell (Veara) | Mike Brower (Chairleg) | Zach Swenson (Edison Project)

15 | dieAgnostic Awards for Favorite Lokal Hard Rock Band named after: popular 90’s Augusta all-ages hard rock band dieAgnostic. Formed out of the ashes of several area metal bands, dieAgnostic eventually morphed from a speed metal band into a technical heavy prog band before heading to New York. ‘09 Nominees: Chairleg | Hollowmass | L.I.E. | Shotgun Opera | Suns Collide

16 | David Bradberry Award Favorite Lokal Rock Band named after: Augusta musician, engineer, producer and Haunted Pillar Records founder David Bradberry. As an engineer, producer, and label head, he released three important compilations of Augusta music featuring artists such as Hundred Year Sun, impulse Ride, and Mary Jane Jones. ‘09 Nominees: 48Volt | Edison Project | Joe Graves & the Dirty Left Hand Say Vandelay | Veara

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hands across downtown / heart & sole

the life of one child births hope for many through stacey’s crusade Thirteen days can hold a lot of pain. A single day can be the fulcrum of years—a wedding, a promotion, a birth; but each new day with the same person can mean a subtle shift in direction till at the end of thirteen days, one finds her perspective has completely changed. This is the story Stacey Haskins tells. In her thirteen days, Margaret Bowen McElreath broke into Stacey’s life and left everything changed. At the time, Stacey was working in Atlanta and helping her expectant sister Carrie prepare the nursery. When the baby, Bowen, was born, her heart and lungs didn’t work properly. Three days later, she was taken to MCG’s Children’s Medical Center in Augusta where she received care from pediatric surgeons like Dr. Robyn Hatley. Ten days of struggle passed, and then Bowen’s time on earth was complete. Stacey would say that one purpose for that time is clear: her niece’s life opened her eyes. She asked to be baptized two days before Bowen died; her family’s trial by fire ignited in her deep passion to help people live well. She started searching for something to do with her drive. A year later, she moved back to her hometown of Augusta and started working on the first Heart and Sole 5k. Heart and Sole, Inc. was born out of death. This year’s Heart and Sole 5k Run and Walk will take place on March 7, 2009. The course begins and ends at MCG Children’s Medical Center and winds through downtown. All proceeds from the event go to benefit “children with special hearts,” a designation made purposefully vague both to root the dream in its most basic goals and to broaden beneficiary field for the event. The money gets scattered among a group of folks who collaborate on behalf of children with congenital heart disorders (CHD’s), and their families. The Medical College of Georgia receives a bit of the pot, and MCG Children’s Medical Center, and Camp Strong Hearts and the Children’s Heart Program Volunteer Council. They participate in what Haskins calls “balanced healthcare,” involving education, research, surgeons, recreation, and other support with the primary goal of helping more CHD patients enjoy healthy and full lives. The second aim of Heart and Sole, says Haskins, is to provide the community with a project. “GO LOCAL,” she urges, when asked how best to support non-profits. She said it to me, to her sponsors, and to the clubs and student groups she speaks to every week. Heart and Sole is an example of an organization that lives above the politics that have destroyed groups that depend on outside sources for support. Haskins’ vision is simple. It occurred to her this fall during the gloomy days of bank failures and bailouts: Augusta businesses and individuals may sponsor Heart and Sole directly through financial or in-kind donations, or they can start paying Augustans for their goods and services. These in turn sponsor the non-profit sector themselves. It’s capitalism at its best, the trickledown effect on a level so small that its benefits can actually be detected. People have gotten behind Heart and Sole. The first year, the race had 476 runners; last year, there were 604. This year the goal is 1000. Many physicians associated with MCG and the CMC, including one of Bowen’s surgeons, Dr. Hatley, are supporting Stacey with advice, financial gifts, and by running in the race themselves. 75 other individuals volunteer their time throughout the year, and many more uncounted who just come to cheer on the runners the day of the race. She’s backed by hundreds of high schoolers who participate in her Straight From the Heart change drives. “I love to see kids helping kids,” bubbles Stacey.

downtownshops will host special shopping afternoon to benefit heart and sole Several downtown stores are planning to donate a portion of their sales on March 7 to benefit Heart and Sole. Check for details as plans develop. The Book Tavern, will also host a special book signing on that day from 3 pm to 5 pm. Ken Burger, to introduce his new book, Swallow Savannah, a thrilling story of ambition and the building of a bomb plant in the 1950s. Set squarely in Bluff County, the Savannah River and, a must read for those of us just a few miles away.

Now she’s got to get through all of February, with registration forms to be logged and final details handled. But Stacey is buoyed by a sense of purpose cemented by small, meaningful signs—things she might not have seen four years ago, like her discovery in the planning stages that the walk from her house to the cemetery where Bowen is buried is exactly five kilometers, the length of the race. Tragedy has a way of sharpening our senses and focusing our aims. I admire Stacey’s ability to see it all as one long, intentional road from Bowen’s deathbed to the race tags that must be printed today. Five years ago, my 25-year-old sister suffered a stroke because of a hole that had been in her heart, undetected, since the day of her birth. I think to myself, what if things had gone differently? What if my sister had been the recipient of care like these MCG doctors provide? Suddenly the statistic 8 out of every 1000 children does not seem so dramatic; a heart defect can affect anyone. And there is no telling what a few dollars or a race well-run could mean for the lives we have left to live. by Charlotte Okie  photo by Elizabeth Benson

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augusta music history 101

Chillin’ in Funky February (a.k.a. Am I Cold or Just That Darn Cool?) What more can be said about February in Augusta, Georgia than “brrrrr?” It’s cold, dark, and, sometimes, a mild presence of snow will find its way onto the city streets. Bars and restaurants become safe havens for those brave enough to venture out and that’s especially true about downtown. Steamy caffeinatedfilled conversations with friends turn into discussions about which great downtown eatery to reconvene at before heading over to see some great live music at one (or several) of the many ultra-cool music venues that are within chilly walking distance. Weather will no more put a damper on the festivities than it will affect the delivery of the mail. So bundle up already. Your friends are waiting! February chills have never been harsh enough to keep music history from happening. Here are just a few “cool” Augusta related musical moments: February 18, 1959 Less than three years after signing her first recording contract with Decca Records, fourteen-year-old “Little Miss Dynamite” Brenda Lee is introduced to an international audience when she performs the first night of an eight-week run at the Olympic Music Hall in Paris, France. This would lead to much success overseas including a pair of UK hit singles not released in the US, and Lee would have an up and coming beat group called the Beatles as her opening act for a UK tour in the early sixties.

February 27, 1991 After serving two years of a six-year prison sentence for various assault, vehicular and drug possession charges, James Brown is paroled from prison. Later that same year Brown would release the album Long Overdue followed by the four CD box set Star Time.

February 2, 1992 Augusta pop rock group Impulse Ride releases Big Things in Small Places on their own Bordertown label. The album would feature several songs that would become live show staples for the band and be the sole release featuring what many consider to be the “classic” Impulse Ride lineup of guitarist/ vocalist Ruskin Yeargain, lead guitarist Bill Irwin, bassist Billy Sanders, and drummer Chris Eddins.

February 10, 1992 With Augusta band Family Jewels on the cover, Lokal Loudness debuts as a small-run ‘zine. The roughly created issue, released by creator John “Stoney” Cannon on daughter Alexis’ fifth birthday, featured area bands Heir to Ruin, Symon Sezz, Soul Damage, People Who Must, and Tijuana Park.

February 9, 1994 Augusta band Hundred Year Sun releases powerful guitar heavy CD Halo on the Dead Man. In contrast to other popular releases at the time, Halo is both heavy and enchantingly melodic at the same time. Within two years, guitarist/vocalist Marc Tompkins and bassist Walter Busbee would help create Atlanta band Billionaire releasing an album on Universal Records.

February 25, 1992 James Brown is one of four music legends to receive a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 34th annual Grammy Awards. In addition to the soul pioneer, the award was also presented to jazz great John Coltrane, innovative rocker Jimi Hendrix, and blues legend Muddy Waters.

February 25, 1993 MC Hammer presents James Brown with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the fourth annual Rhythm & Blues Foundation Pioneer Awards. Also known as the Pioneer Award, the honor recognizes artists whose lifelong contributions have been instrumental in the development of Rhythm and Blues music.

John “Stoney” Cannon is the creator of Augusta music resource Lokal Loudness and has been covering area music since 1992. For more information visit

46 / february / verge

“Winter Solstice” by louAnne Zimmerman

FOR MEMORIES THAT LAST A LIFETIME, IMAGINE A SETTING THAT’S TRULY WORTHY OF YOUR CELEBRATION! Stately and elegant, nestled in the heart of downtown, The City Club was built in the mid 1800’s and has been beautifully restored. It features ornate moldings, heart pine floors, exposed brick, leaded glass, Tiffany lamps, a copper bar, and more. Beauty is in the details and each and every element of an affair is equally important to us. From the first time you enter The City Club to the culmination of your special event, our team will extend to you and your guests warmth, dedication and an unparalleled quality of service. Whatever you need, impressive start through memorable finish—-from fresh ideas and knowledgeable planning to arranging professional photos, entertainment or audio-visual service, we can do it all so you don’t have to. Please contact us today for availability, rates and detailed information.


verge / february / 47

48 / february / verge

February 2009  

February issue - verge