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Waterfront Wonderland Holiday season sets sail


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NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2011 Washington, North Carolina





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26 Shopping 14 Hang a Little History: Washington Historic District unveils 2011 Christmas Ornament

History 26 ‘Show Boat’:

Roots run deep in Pamlico River area


Lady in Waiting: Turnage vaudeville stage ready for awakening

A Storied Collection: Treasures tell tales of couple’s journey


Path to Fitness: Waterfront offers exercise with a view


Rescued Luxury: Fire Station Lofts offer owners unique, irreplaceable home


Helpful Tips: How to avoid holiday weight gain

IN EVERY ISSUE 8 10 18 53 59 64 66

FoOD 54

Turkey is the King: The centerpiece of your holiday dining table


Perfect Pies: Local recipes sure to please the palette






MBER 201

Washington Harbor. Beautiful views of historic Washington and the Pamlico River offer a special holiday treat. (Photo by Meredith Loughlin)




to our spitals tem ngo Ho spital sys s t and Pu a 10-ho tie Beaufor ’re now 29 coun lcome ople in care. We to pe d to we of n ou ily pr itment fam millio ry We’re ve Health Systems ed care to 1.4 ions, our comm alth of all he rat dit ty prove the Universi ed, integ With these ad im nc to va . ad ys bringing North Carolina ss and more wa ce rn of easte cians, more ac than ever. ysi ger wan more ph unities is stron oke-Cho l | Roan our comm Memoria e aufort Berti ngo | Be owan | rle | Pu rial | Ch | Albema ty Memo e un ag rit Co He Pitt Banks | | Outer General Duplin






Publisher’s Note The Scene River Life Word on Wine Calendar Down the River Why I Love Washington



ont r f r e t a . W derland S E C I R V MO Woliodany season sets sail SER ON THE COVER E R O H M Not-a-Yacht is a common sight in GAZIN

Art of Life: BCAC, Toler strive to enhance arts in region








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Publisher Ray McKeithan Editor Christ Prokos

Contributors Mike Voss Jonathan Clayborne Vail Rumley Betty Mitchell Gray Kevin Scott Cutler Pamela Anderson Meredith Loughlin Adam Feldhousen Larry Boyd Ryan Webb Jenny Baumgardt Katherine Tate Shay Chilton Marketing and Sales Cecilia Prokos Contact information Washington the Magazine P.O. Box 1778 Washington, NC 27889 Advertising inquiries: 252-946-2144 Ext. 233 Subscriptions & change of address: 252-946-2144 Washington the Magazine is published six times a year by Washington Newsmedia, LLC. Special thanks to: MJ Peters, Carol Mills, Bill Sykes, Scott Campbell Copyright 2011, Washington Newsmedia, LLC


‘Character and charm’ abound


y first exposure to Washington was during the eighties as a student at East Carolina University. During several trips to the area, I observed a thriving arts community and a vibrant lifestyle along the banks of the Pamlico River. “Cool place,” I surely remarked. An understatement. Washington the Magazine is a guidebook to the unique qualities of the best-littletown-in-the-world. I hope you enjoy reading about the people, events and eclectic nature of Washington in this inaugural edition. Washington’s own, every-other-month publication is a celebration — in print — of the character and charm of our hometown. It’s about bringing history to life: • Look inside and experience the transformation of an old hospital and a deteriorating second floor of a downtown building into amazing condos. • Learn how inspiration for the book and musical The Show Boat was found in Bath, North Carolina!


• What mysterious past still lingers at the Turnage Theater, waiting to be discovered and renewed? It’s about bringing people together: • “The Scene” is a collage of smiling faces showing our community coming together in fellowship and fun. • “River Life” is your guide to waterfront living; where folks like to gather to enjoy nature’s gifts. • “Why I Love Washington” offers a firstperson perspective on life here. Enjoy David Norwood’s reflection of planting family roots along the shores of the Pamlico. If you share my passion for this place, I invite you to offer suggestions, story ideas, photos and input. This is your magazine after all. I offer heartfelt wishes for a blessed holiday season and the special memories you’ll cherish for years to come.

W. Ray McKeithan

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Beaufort County Arts Council Fine Arts Show Gala


Members and patrons enjoy beautiful artwork, and each other, at the annual show held in conjunction with the Smoke on the Water festival. The event is held by the Beaufort County Arts Council and sponsored by PotashCorp-Aurora. The history of the Fine Arts Show predates the formation of the organization. The popular event is a showcase for local artists and is held each year at the Washington Civic Center. Read more about the arts council and executive director, Joey Toler on page 49.

Virginia Finnerty, Shelton McNair and Rema Jakup

Sue Beck and Judy Jarvah

Ann Peters

Bernice Marle, Jay Marle and Jeff Jacob

Sue Mansfield and Nancy Collis

Pat Carlson and Doris Schneider

Jenny Bradley and Carol Mann



Roy and Cathy Whichard

Eleanor Rollins and Glenda Barnes

Jeff and Kay Woolard

Sue Beck and Karen Krupa

Tom Russell and Mary Thomson

Holly Cook and Jeff Jacob

Marilyn Roth and Alex Jacklin NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2011 | WASHINGTON THE MAGAZINE • 11



Boys and Girls Club Pig Cook-Off The Boys and Girls Club of Beaufort County held an inaugural Pig Cook-Off and Bike Show. Delicious barbeque and baked goods were sold to benefit programs and activities for area children.

Mac “Bear” Hodges, Yolanda Battle, Audrianna White,

“The Mouth of the South” winning cooking team: Rudy Burns, Earl Thompson, John “Dog Pound” Daniels, Rodney Rich, Lashonda Cannon, Gaston Collins, Kam Rouse, Tyler Smith

Rudy and Mavis Burns

Tyler Smith and son, Chaise Smith

Nadine Gordon and Jamie Cahoon

Michael Griffin, Carlton Roberson, Garland Griffin

Brandi Haywood and Karen Ball

Freda Wyness and Mike Wyness


Marjorie Mills and Geneva Smaw


Summer Festival Golf Tournament Running in conjunction with Summer Festival weekend, the golf tournament is a popular Washington tradition held annually at Washington Yacht and Country Club. Good golf and social activities make for a fun weekend attracting participants throughout the state and beyond.

Robbie and Mollie Moore

Ginny and David Jones

Bobby and Lisa Clark

Ivey Witherington, Ashley Crompton, Katie Yelle, Jeremy Shadle

Michael Stover, Zack Swanner, Andrew Friedman

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Katie Yelle and Joey LeCompte

Pam and Jeremy Shadle, Head Golf Pro

Ray and Terri Bergevin


Washington Historical Society Christmas Ornament COlleCtiOn


Hang a little Written by PAMELA ANDERSON Photographs By Adam FELDHOUSEN


t. Peter’s Episcopal Church is featured on this year’s Christmas-tree ornaments produced and offered to the public by the Washington Area Historic Foundation. “This will be the 16th ornament in a series that has depicted a structure of interest in the city,” said Dee Congleton, WAHF vice president. “The ornaments sell for $25 plus tax, and they come with a stand for display purposes. Proceeds from ornament sales are used for community projects like the park on Water Street and the Harding Square landscaping.” Other WAHF projects include the carriage for the cannon displayed at the N.C. Estuarium and a historical marker for the former Eureka lumber company site. The ornament project began in 1996 and featured Singleton Primitive Baptist Church, the old courthouse and old City Hall. Since then, other historical structures have been featured on ornaments such as the skipjack Ada Mae Fowle warehouse and train station, Bank of Washington, the Municipal Building; the former John Small Elementary School, the church towers of the First Presbyterian, St. Peter’s and First Methodist churches; the Bug House; Washing-

St. Peter’s depicted on WAHF’s


ton High School, former Atlantic Coast Line Railroad depot (Beaufort County Arts Council building), the former Tayloe Hospital; Atlantic Coast Line freight depot (Civic Center), Turnage Theater, old City Hall, First Presbyterian Church building and the DeMille home. Congleton, who has been a part of WAHF for 16 years, said the late Hazel Lassiter came up with the idea for the Christmas ornaments. Rebecca Clark is chairwoman of the Christmas ornament committee. Don Stroud, WAHF president, said the group has more than 100 members. New members are encouraged to join. The foundation’s board meets once a month and hosts a historic homes tour. The 2011 tour featured 17 homes and raised more than $4,000, which will be returned to the community to promote historic sites and interest people in saving old structures. This year’s ornament selection was chosen because of the church’s rich historic value. Established in 1822, St. Peter’s is in its 188th year. In 1824, a frame building facing Main Street was erected. A stone marker in the churchyard identifies the spot where the old church stood. On May 9th, 1864, the church burned to the ground, an indirect result of the Union occupation of

2011 Christmas ornament

Washington. A crystal chandelier and the baptismal font were all that survived. Undertaking the rebuilding of the church soon after the Civil War required great sacrifice from the parishioners of St. Peter’s, many of whom had lost their homes in the same fire that destroyed the church. Nevertheless, the present building was laid out in 1867 and completed in 1873. The church was consecrated by Bishop Atkinson in December 1873. Today, the interior of the church features beautiful stained-glass lancet windows depicting scenes and symbols of religious life, wainscoting and arches from Beaufort County walnut, heart-pine pews made by Williams Walling and a beautiful white marble altar. A highlight of the interior is the St. Peter’s window, which depicts Saint Peter holding the keys to the heavenly kingdom. At its top is the eye of God. Traditional symbols of Christian belief complete this beautiful triptych-stained glass window. The stained-glass window in the sacristy depicts the old church and the new church. This year’s featured ornament and a limited selection of past ornaments may be purchased at the Beaufort County Arts Council or the North Carolina Estuarium. NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2011 | WASHINGTON THE MAGAZINE • 15

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Written by CHRIST PROKOS Photographs By Meredith Loughlin

McCotters find Broad Creek entwined in their lives


ill McCotter knows a lot about working, playing and living on Broad Creek. As a boy, he spent summers on his small boat exploring the waterway from sunrise to sunset. “I would catch a ride with my dad and catch a ride back,” McCotter recalled. “I kept a boat here. It was small and had a 7½-horsepower motor. It was always a hassle to get gas. No gas meant I had to sit on the shore and play.” As a teen, he learned to fish and water ski while working at his father’s boatyard. He would prepare cabin cruisers for outof-town owners who would come for a weekend visit. “When I didn’t have anything to do, (dad) would put me to work,” McCotter said. “We always looked forward to the boaters coming because they would bring crabs and girls for us.” As a young man, he skipped his usual card game with friends one evening to go on a blind date at McCotter’s Marina, where he met the woman who would become his future bride. He proposed three weeks later. “It was a blind date,” said Jane McCotter, Bill’s wife of 44 years. “There is a tree with a brick wall around it, and the first date we had was down at McCotter’s Marina under that tree. He was living down there then. He had mustered out of the Navy, and he was working for his dad at the marina, and he was a blind date and we ended up sitting under that tree.” Left: Bill and Jane McCotter enjoy the tranquil setting looking south from their deck. NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2011 | WASHINGTON THE MAGAZINE • 19

“My roommate in college, who was a good friend growing up, introduced us. I went back to school in Greensboro. The Saturday before Labor Day, mom and daddy took me back to school, and on Sunday night, he called me and said, ‘I’ve moved to Raleigh.’ He came over Monday, and we went out on Monday night. We’d known each other three weeks and he said, ‘You want to get married?’ and I said, ‘Sure.’” The McCotters feel blessed to have had the continuity to raise their children and grandchildren on the creek, something that is not readily available to everyone. “It’s all about the water, and you can’t own that,” said Jane McCotter. “We don’t own that. We are lucky enough to live here but you don’t own it. … Nobody owns this. This is here and a God-given gift that we have.

Grandsons Will Ferguson (left) and his brother Drew Ferguson enjoy carefree days on the creek.

Looking south toward the Pamlico River, steady boat traffic to marinas makes the view ever changing.

Bill and Jane McCotter enjoy a quiet moment with “Lu Lu.�

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“It’s a sin that we live in this place and (on the) water, one of the best things ever, 98 percent of our population can’t access this. That is a tragedy. That’s wrong.” For all its beauty, living on the water has its natural drawbacks, something Bill McCotter is quick to point out. “Everyone lives in fear of the water here,” Bill said, referring to the potential for natural disasters outside the back door. “But you clean up and wait for the next one. In the meantime, you have pretty sunsets, moon risings, and stars at night.” The McCotters have seen a lot of changes during in their many years on Broad Creek, but one thing remains a constant. “The creek stays the same,” Jane McCotter said. “Even though people come and go, and times come and go, it’s always here and … that stays the same, no matter what else changes.”

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Upper left: The James Adams Floating Theatre rests on a dry dock in Baltimore, Maryland, on Aug. 7, 1917. Middle: A view of theater seating as seen from the stage circa 1927. Upper right: Leading lady Beulah Adams was known as the “Mary Pickford of the Chesapeake.” Above: The cast of the theater holds a production meeting backstage.


Roots run deep in Pamlico River area

‘Show Boat’



“The first show ever given on water will be afforded the citizens of Washington next Monday evening. The “Playhouse” which has been under construction at the W.M. Chauncey marine railways since September last is now practically completed and is the first enterprise of the kind ever built on the Atlantic coast. The “Playhouse,” or rather floating theater, as some choose to call it, is the scheme and plan of the owner Mr. James Adams who for many years has been in the show business. He gave the first carnival show here in 1902, when the Hatch Adams attraction spent a week in the city.” Washington Daily News, Feb. 25, 1914

‘Show Boat’ was a much-anticipated visitor Written by CHRIST PROKOS Photographs Courtesy OF Mariners Museum, Marguerite Young, Jacques Kelly, Vivian O’Leary, University of MD. Library

Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Edna Ferber spent four days aboard the James Adams Floating Theatre, taking tickets and performing in shows as it traveled along the Pamico River. This served as her inspiration to write “Show Boat.” (Photo courtesy of Historic Bath State Historic Site)



he top story in the Washington Daily News that Wednesday went on to describe what would be christened the James Adams Floating Theatre. Built at a cost of $25,000, the floating theatre could seat 850 people and had living accommodations for 25. It would travel from city to city along the waterfronts in eastern North Carolina, Virginia and Maryland, going as far north as Baltimore. At each stop, the cast and crew would entertain local townspeople by staging multiple theatrical shows over the course of several days for as little as 10 cents a ticket. People would return nightly to see dramas, comedies and vaudeville performances before the Adams would shove off for the next port. Unknown at the time, one guest would send Mr. Adams’ floating theatre into historical lore. After graduating from high school in Appleton, Wis., in the early 1900s, Edna Ferber wanted to become an actress. Lacking the finan-

cial means to attend college, she accepted a position as a reporter for the Appleton Daily Crescent for $3 a week. Ferber would go on to become a celebrated novelist, winning the Pulitzer Prize in 1924 for “So Big,” the tale of a woman raising a child on a truck farm outside of Chicago. “Ferber was a well-known author of that early 20th century and she kind of fell into writing,” recounted Bea Latham with the Historic Bath Site. “It wasn’t really what her passion was at first. Her passion as a child was really to be on stage or be in the theater. That just didn’t work out for her, and writing was something that she could do, and they asked her to do that right out of high school for a local newspaper.” Ferber’s success as a writer attracted the attention of Broadway playwright George S. Kaufman. The two collaborated on a stage adaptation of Ferber’s short story “Old Man Minnick.” Opening night at the Schubert Theater in New Haven, Conn., was less than triumphant. In the after-

math, as the troupe analyzed what went wrong, producer Winthrop Ames suggested they charter a show boat for their next production. “(Ferber) had never heard of that before, but that really sparked her interest because theater is what she wanted, and here was this opportunity to learn more about how these boats plied up and down waterways offering entertainment to people that couldn’t really get to Broadway,” Latham continued. “She was very intrigued by how all this worked.” Ferber’s curiosity led her to the James Adams Floating Theatre, which at that time was playing cities and towns along the Pamlico River. Ferber arrived in Beaufort County in October 1924, travelling to Belhaven to rendezvous with the vessel. Unfortunately, the season had just ended for the James Adams, although Ferber was invited back for the following season. Ferber returned in April 1925, spending one night in Bath while awaiting the floating theatre’s arrival. She even signed the guest registry at St. Thomas Episcopal Church on April 18, 1925. “She actually spent four days on the boat as it went up and down the shores of eastern North Carolina,” Latham said. “(Ferber) took part in all the aspects of how the boat worked. She said she sold tickets, she performed in some small parts. … She was just completely taken with this whole concept of the show boat.” With her newfound experience, Ferber returned to New York to write “Show Boat,” a novel published in

1926. It would be turned into the 1927 Broadway musical about the Hawks family and its troupe of actors aboard the fictitious Cotton Blossom on the Mississippi River. In reality, Ferber’s background for the story was garnered from those four days in eastern North Carolina. “I think for us here in Bath, what we like about the movie or the book or the play or whatever part of ‘Show Boat’ that you’re familiar with, what we like is the fact that we know some of the things that she uses in her book are things that she found here in Bath,” Latham said. “For example, even though she changes the names to fit her character, she uses the inscription off of Margaret Palmer’s grave right here behind the Palmer-Marsh House; she uses that inscription in her book even though she changed the name. She talks about other aspects of our small town even though she changed the name and never really gave credit to her visit to Bath or really didn’t seem very excited about her time here. The little part we can glean from that is that we know she was here and we know that she used what she found here in her book.” The James Adams Floating Theatre continued to operate along the Eastern Seaboard from Georgia to Maryland until it sank in the Savannah River in 1941. There have been countless performances of the musical “Show Boat” and its signature song “Ol’ Man River.” What the audience doesn’t realize is that the inspiration behind the song was not the Mississippi, but the Pamlico River.

James Adams may sail again Nearly 70 years after fire destroyed the James Adams Floating Theatre in the Savannah River, an effort is underway to bring the show boat-era vessel back to life. Chesapeake Bay Floating Theatre, Inc., a 501c(3) non-profit organization based in Indian Head, Maryland, has been spearheading an endeavor to “re-create the experience of the American repertory theatre movement of the early 20th century.” The plan is to build James Adams II, a replica of the original James Adams Floating Theatre that will serve as both theatre and museum as it tours the coastal communities of Maryland, Virginia and North Carolina. While the CBFT focuses on fundraising, the immediate concern for Adams is gathering oral histories and artifacts for the museum while they are still available. “One of the goals of this project, in addition to re-creating the theatrical experience on the water, is also to have a small museum to educate about the original James Adams and the time period and what life would have been like on a traveling show boat,” Adams said. “The people who have the direct experience with the original boat are aging at this point in time. Finding those individuals is hard so getting the word out about the fact that we are looking to collect oral histories, we are looking to collect experiences, artifacts, we would appreciate. We certainly would want to encourage people to get in touch with us.” To contact CBFT, visit NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2011 | WASHINGTON THE MAGAZINE • 29


Turnage vaudeville stage ready for awakening


Written by Jonathan Clayborne PhotographS By MEREDITH LOUGHLIN

t’s said this theater is haunted. It is. It’s haunted by musicals buried so deeply in the past their songs are lost echoes, their copyrights expired. It’s haunted by reverberating, wide-mouth laughter and the low hum of an organ; it’s haunted by sepia, silent-movie dreams and a chattering projector; it’s haunted by lonely shadows that have been shuttered away for nearly a century. Downstairs, there is active life. Reopened to the public in November 2007, the Turnage Theater hosts around 20 shows a year plus special events — everything from Vegas revues to private parties. But the public Turnage that most every Washingtonian knows is a circa-1930, fully restored “palace-style” theater in a two-story complex. All of 150 W. Main St. is ensconced on the National Register of Historic Places. Yet upstairs, unseen by most spectators, is the now-quiet vaudeville stage, a yet-to-be-restored space said to have been completed in 1913. In its day, this place was called The New Theatre. This is where silent movies were shown, where hoofers hoofed and bands blared, where on-the-circuit musicals like “Oh! Johnny, Oh!” played in January 1918. This is where, in March of that wartime year, Douglas Fairbanks Sr. blazed a trail in the film “The Man from Painted Post.” Lecturers, from local politicians to a real, live British army veteran, took the stage to hold forth on “how to win the war” — you know, the one that was supposed to end all wars. It’s rumored stars like comedian Red Skelton and bandleader Cab Calloway trod these boards — rumors hard to confirm. C.A. Turnage, the man for whom the building was eventually named,

The 1913 vaudeville performance space built as the New Theatre now sits empty waiting on efforts to reawaken the memories of its grand past. The old projector from the days of silent cinema, on facing page, sits inside the theater.


The original Turnage Theatre sits empty with its walls and signature horseshoe balcony showing signs of age and deterioration.

purchased stock in The New Theatre in 1914. (He bought out his partners in 1921.) A man of obvious vision and enterprise, Turnage ended up building the ground-floor palace theater after talkies necessitated a retreat from The New Theatre’s noisy, Main Street-facing façade. Turnage outlined his history with the theater in a letter to longtime businessman and Washington Daily


News columnist John Bragaw. The letter was published, in part, in the 1976 book “Washington and the Pamlico,” authored by part-time historians Ursula Loy and Pauline Worthy. “The New Theatre was the leading theater in Washington, N.C. from the day it opened in 1913 until 1930,” Turnage wrote. In 1929, Turnage took a long-term lease on the downstairs portion of the building and the lot behind it.

He oversaw construction of the Turnage Theater, which he called “one of the most modern theaters in eastern North Carolina.” Turnage reportedly died in 1963. After his death, the Turnage Theater continued in operation through 1978, when it closed. Movies were shown there sporadically through the early 1980s,

according to former patrons’ accounts and a scrapbook that has been housed in the restored building. By the mid-1990s, it was clear the deteriorating Turnage was in danger of demolition. A nonprofit group, the Turnage Theaters Foundation, was formed in 1996, fundraising began soon after and the palace theater was restored by 2007. But restoration funds couldn’t be stretched to cover a rebirth of the vaudeville theater, which some visitors contend is a more impres-

sive space because of its size, its grand past, its curved balcony and its remarkable acoustics. Scotty Henley, executive director of the Turnage foundation, lovingly referred to the “horseshoe embrace” of the balcony, and to a group of 20 or so “almost like box seats” because of their positions relative to the stage. Henley, who handles lights and sound for many of the palace theater’s productions, has a profound appreciation of the dusty vaudeville hall. “You don’t find a lot of theaters … NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2011 | WASHINGTON THE MAGAZINE • 33

that have a balcony line that runs perpendicular to the stage,” he said, tossing in praise for the sturdy structure, and the pressed-tin ceiling that is pretty much still in place. It’s plausible that famous vaudeville players trouped through this water-and-railroad town in the era when “every day was an audition,” Henley speculated. In fact, the Feb. 16, 1914, edition of the Washington Daily News trumpets “high-class vaudeville” at The New Theatre, thanks to the booking prowess of the Keith circuit. The Keith-Albee circuit marketed some of the leading road acts of that time, and the name was synonymous with the classierthan-most vaudeville performers that went down well with churchgoing Americans. “There (are) only four other towns in the state running this class of vaudeville,” the Feb. 16 Daily News article notes. “That is New Bern, Wilmington, Winston-

Salem and Charlotte. With Washington included on the circuit with these larger cities the patrons of the (New) Theater will from tonight on have the pleasure of getting the best there is in the vaudeville line.” In these first years of The New Theatre, vaudeville was front-page news — and usually top-of-the-page news — in Washington. The Jan. 1, 1914, WDN unleashed the paper’s hyperbole stores on “a novelty sharp shooting sister team,” calling the duo “one of the best acts that has ever been South, and one that is different from the majority of acts now being seen at any theater.” Photos of actors were published in advance of their arrivals, often under italicized headlines such as “Grand Opera Coming.” This heading proclaimed the imminence of the road version of Charles Gounod’s opera “Faust,” which pulled into Washington in February 1914.


“‘Faust’ has been fully equipped with scenic details and the costuming considered one of the essentials in all the particulars toward furnishing a genuine treat,” proclaims a contemporaneous edition of the Daily News. Despite its colorful theatrical and cinematic background, the vaudeville theater isn’t due for refurbishment — not yet, anyway. “It is a dream, it is a wish,” said Henley, pointing out early plans called for the theater to be brought back in Phase II of a long-range plan. If and when it does return, The New Theatre could have the power to outdraw its successor, the palace. Henley has heard the vaudeville house could seat nearly 900 souls. The palace seats just 432. But for the present, the lady sleeps with her memories, waiting for her grand reopening. She hasn’t vanished after all. And the ghosts go on whispering.

Wood framing shores up the opening of the old vaudeville stage of the Turnage Theatre. A mannequin, on facing page, stands watch in the empty space.



A Storied Collection

Treasures tell tales of couple’s journey NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2011 | WASHINGTON THE MAGAZINE • 37


eth Collier is a collector. She wouldn’t use that word to describe herself — she’d likely choose more traditional ones: interior decorator, designer, artist, mom — but the unique collection Collier has amassed with a true connoisseur’s skill easily escapes notice among the many antiques, objets d’art and kitschy stuff filling her home. It eludes the eye because it simply can’t be seen. Instead, it’s heard. Collier points to a wall in her dining area, to a large, framed map. Behind the glass, the old paper is wrinkled and stained. “That’s the map my grandfather kept in his johnboat,” Collier explains. “And that’s motor Written by VAIL STEWART RUMLEY Photographs By Meredith Loughlin


Left: Malcolm tables and chandelier, made from recycled tobacco sticks once used to hang tobacco to dry. Below: The home includes a view from the hall into the dining area and a still life formed by stories.

The Colliers working on their new line of furniture in the vanCollier design studio.

oil on it. Look — can you see the pattern it makes? It looks like an Asian woman. A painting of an Asian woman.” The map-turned-portrait is a work of art, like the perfect still life beneath it: chunks of white coral reaching skyward from a clear bowl atop a raw wood pillar. Another long, narrow piece of wood leans at a perfect angle against the column. The perfection of the still life, however, does not reside in its aesthetic beauty. Rather, it’s the story behind each piece that defines Collier’s style and defines her, as a collector: the crystal bowl belonged to Collier’s grandmother; the coral brought back from her brother’s honeymoon in the islands; the pillar of wood, hewn from an ancient pecan tree uprooted to make way for All Saints Hall at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church; the stick, a tobacco stick from the days when tobacco was king, and Collier’s grandfather, Malcolm Hassell, owned a tobacco warehouse on Pierce Street. Point at any given object in the renovated condo Collier shares with her husband, Chris, and sons, Beck and Hawes, and a story is forthcoming. In the living room, there’s a friend’s inspiration in the Greek key pattern of the otto-

man Collier designed; in the bedroom, there’s the round security mirror she hung, on a whim, above a tray of crystal decanters and is the inspiration for her next design; in the hall, it’s in the intricate designs of small rugs scattered about, worn with age, yet still vibrant with a story of Chris Collier’s childhood in Turkey, when his father was a buyer for a subsidiary of R.J. Reynolds. But if the Collier book of style is comprised of those individual stories, the binding of the book would be the turn-ofthe-century Georgian building in which the Colliers reside. Located at a corner of West Main and Washington streets and locally referred to as “the old Tayloe Hospital,” the Colliers bought the building in 2001 after it had sat unused for a decade. It was in distressing shape when they purchased it — every window boarded over, mold had infested mattresses and equipment abandoned when the building’s second inhabitant, Britthaven of Washington, moved to a new building near the hospital. “‘Blair Witch Project’ comes to mind,” Collier says, as she describes exploring the pitch-black, three-story building by flashlight in those early days. “We found

bedroom slippers, near the entrance of the hospital, like someone had just stepped out of them. It was eerie. Eerie. Eerie,” she says, each repetition more emphatic than the last. The Colliers began renovation in 2004, gutting the main masonry structure and dividing it into three separate living spaces: the Colliers’, with a firstfloor entrance, though most of the living space is on the second; a ground-floor dwelling and another duplex. Ceilings, walls and linoleum were ripped out, and the Colliers had the condo’s concrete flooring scored down to its aggregate, leaving a smooth finish with a slightly rough look. Collier took two months to stain the concrete by herself, giving the floor a dark, luminescent, terrazzo effect. A 1950s-era, brick-façade addition to the original building, they razed and replaced altogether with four new townhomes that carefully maintain elements of the hospital’s southern Georgian style in their columns, parapet walls, concrete seals and keystones. But the stories of the renovation are not nearly as interesting to Collier as the stories told about the hospital

Blue doors open onto the Colliers’ first-floor foyer, formerly the ambulance entrance to the Tayloe Hospital (left). The vanCollier furniture line features this ottoman, made of recycled metal in a Greek Key pattern and cream-colored cowhide.


itself. Collier discovered part of her son’s room was local resident Dr. Neil Partrick Sr.’s, office in the early years of his practice. The palatial restroom off the kitchen was originally a “birthing room,” and the decrepit Otis elevator that wheezes its way from one floor to the next (the wary Colliers take the stairs), apparently has many stories of its own. “That elevator saw plenty of action in the old days,” Collier winks, but demurs when asked to elaborate on why the elevator seemed to get stuck, quite often, between floors. It’s a stellar fit — the building with the Colliers. The recreated condo is a combination of new and old, industrial and antique, traditional and modern. It’s a style filled with contradictory impulses that somehow manage to compliment one another. The same style defines the Colliers’ interior decorating company, vanCollier, and their new furniture line debuted at this year’s fall High Point Furniture Market. The line is a collaboration, something at which the couple is skilled — Chris Collier is the antiques expert; Beth Collier, the interior designer — and emphasizes a commitment to using

natural materials and recycling, repurposing items from the past into the design elements of the present. The Malcolm line is a perfect example. Named for Collier’s grandfather, the line of sconces, chandeliers and tables is both rustic and modern, softened by the uneven edge of raw wood — real tobacco sticks, recycled from the old tobacco barns of eastern North Carolina, from which tobacco was once hung over fire to dry. Pieces of the line decorate the third floor of the old Tayloe Hospital, where the Colliers’ design studio is located. The sprawling, open space, with some walls and ceilings stripped down to bare I-beams, has equal elements of an upscale design office, fabric store, antiques auction warehouse and a set straight out of Stephen King’s “The Shining.” It’s clean, it’s bright, as quirky and fun as Collier’s sense of humor, but unnerving remnants of the building’s past life take one by surprise: a porcelain bathtub caged by metal where walls once existed; a paper-towel dispenser on a pinktiled wall, its brown paper stacked and ready, though the last pair of wet hands to come through was more than two de-

cades ago. The juxtaposition of the old Tayloe Hospital’s third floor with the sleek comfort of the Colliers’ condo below is startling, yet a completely natural progression. In the upstairs space is the bare bones of Beth Collier’s style, flayed clean of the protective layers of prettiness, a simple elegance that defies real description. “I don’t define it,” says Collier. “When you design, things just evolve. The structure of my style is traditional, but I like to think it’s layered by moments in my life.” For most, the moments of one’s life are captured in frames — wedding photos, school pictures, baby pictures of grandchildren — because there’s nothing more traditional than filling a home with faces and memories. Beth Collier’s variation on the traditional is, however, more stark and beautiful, sophisticated and simple. It’s also strikingly sentimental. On the second floor of the old Tayloe Hospital, the memories are just as clearly displayed as on any stairway wall full of family portraits, images of vacations at the beach, birthday parties long ago. Look around. The stories are there to be told — if you choose to listen.

The stately facade of the original hospital structure offers few hints about its former life (left). Red, lacquered walls and stained-concrete flooring mark a dramatic entrance to the Collier home.



Rescued Luxury Fire Station Lofts offer owners unique, irreplaceable home

Scott Campbell likely coined the phrase “eclectic palatial” when he described the main living space of the condo he and Bill Sykes created inside the former Washington Fire Station building on Market Street.



A kitchen that doubles as living space is part of the condo. Beneath the stairs, paneled cabinetry hides kitchen storage and the refrigerator. An image of the area during restoration is inset at right. Scott Campbell and Bill Sykes, owners of Fire Station Lofts, are pictured upper right. 44 • WASHINGTON THE MAGAZINE | NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2011

“Washington and the welcoming people and the beautiful environs captured our hearts.”


he scene could almost be scripted — step, pause, the jaw drops. Turn left, turn right, look up. And up. Exclaim. And cut. No director is calling out commands, and there are no actors, but this is always the reaction —immediate, predictable — when the door opens to the Campbell-Sykes home and one is first ushered into another realm, one more likely to be found at some tony Park Avenue address than on Market Street in Washington, N.C. The building is virtually indistinguishable from the other early 20thcentury buildings that line Market Street from Water Street to Third Street. Only the signage sets it apart — for 54 years, it’s read “Washington Daily News,” and tucked above the newspaper is not the warren of offices one would expect, but an architectural revelation. An inspiring renovation. A labor of love. Bill Sykes and Scott Campbell began their labor of love, the Fire Station Lofts, in January 2007. For years, they’d been searching for the perfect building; and for years before that, they’d been looking for the perfect town in which to search. They could have settled anywhere, in any of the world’s great cities. They might have traveled the seven seas on their 32-foot-long catamaran, spending summers cruising the Northern coast and winters anchored in

the sunny Caribbean. “We talked about many different places,” said Sykes. “Washington and the welcoming people and the beautiful environs captured our hearts.” Sykes speaks fluently about many of those places, because he’s seen more of the world than most. The son of a petroleum-industry executive, he spent most of his childhood in Bolivia and Venezuela, and the latter part in Pennsylvania. As a lieutenant, engineer officer, he circumnavigated the globe on the USS Charles P. Cecil, which included a stint in Vietnam. He later received an MBA from Harvard Business School, and he spent a career in finance working in such faraway places as Auckland, London, Singapore and Tokyo. But he and Campbell were ultimately drawn to the small, traditionally Southern town on the river where they chose to make a new life and their new home. The criteria for their new home: a suitable size, a reasonable price and a sense of history. “We wanted a space with unique, irreplaceable features,” says Campbell. They found it in the building that began its life as a factory then served as the town’s fire station from 1925 until 1965. The original red-oak flooring, with lengths running more than 20 feet, is believed to have been milled on site. History is embedded in every tread of the heart-of-pine staircase that



One of the loft’s greatest features is hidden to most passersby. The view of historic downtown Washington from the third-floor terrace is breathtaking and a favorite fair weather spot for the owners.

Washington’s firemen clomped up daily; that residents trod on their way to USO dances during the war years. “That’s irreplaceable. It’s priceless,” says Campbell. “And now it’s our turn to take care of and cherish those treads.” Before they could cherish, they had to gut the place first, ripping out the previously mentioned warren of small rooms left behind when a past tenant, Beaufort County Technical College, moved out. Sykes and Campbell had a vision for their home, and they turned to Matt Sopher, owner of Turning Point Renovations and Remodeling Inc. to help turn their vision into reality. “It was definitely a different project to jump into,” says Sopher, recalling the process of converting a 100-year-old building into a state-

of-the-art condo. “There were a lot of engineering issues. When it was built, there was no real building code. Trying to do what they envisioned and keep them within current building code was challenging.” Like chipping away layers of rock to get to the jewel beneath, the gutting process revealed the space’s solid structure and natural beauty. In one area, a large crawlspace above the main floor was revealed, opening the path for the set of stairs and loft office that would eventually be built. From the stripped, raw space the shape of Sykes/Campbell home began to emerge: two spacious bedrooms, with baths, on either side of a kitchen that blends seamlessly into graciously open living and dining areas. Between kitchen and living areas, an L -shaped granite bar pro-


vides plenty of counter space, additional room for dining and a gathering place when entertaining, which Campbell and Sykes do quite often. Skylights rain sun down from the soaring 25-foot-plus ceiling in the loft, and another short set of steps leads from the loft to a hatched door and out to the terrace with sweeping views of historic homes and church steeples, of sky and the river. Conservative and conservationistminded, Sykes and Campbell augmented standard energy-saving measures with more progressive ones. The exterior walls of the building received an ½-inch to 1-inch thick coating of closed-cell foam on the interior brick, further insulated by R15 fiberglass batting on their builtout 2-inch-by-4-inch walls. Hot water, space heating and the LED secondary lights in main hallway (from

Gorgeous natural light spills over the original red-oak flooring, which the owners believe may have been milled on site during construction.

As an homage to the past: an image of a horse-drawn fire truck taken in front of the fire station, circa 1930, is prominently displayed in the loft.

staircase at the entrance to the condo’s door), are all powered by two solar panels installed on the building’s roof. The primary lights in the main hallway are on five-minute timers. The architectural trend of including the kitchen into the main living space of a home is one Sykes and Campbell embraced fully. Beneath the stairs to the office loft, instead of sheetrock and the traditional closet space, paneling runs the southern wall of the kitchen. Only upon closer inspection is it revealed that cabinetry doors hide beneath the paneling, which, in turn, conceals an enormous amount of storage space, and … the full-size kitchen refrigerator. “I call it eclectic palatial,” Campbell describes. Whatever one calls the unique

style of their home, it’s comfortable — as comfortable as the life Sykes and Campbell have created in Washington. Both men are active volunteers and advocates for downtown living. They walk everywhere. And they certainly don’t mind climbing those 25 beautifully restored, heart-of-pine steps. “We’re not afraid of stairs,” says Sykes. Of course they’re not afraid of stairs. Not when climbing them a few times a day is included in their exercise regimen. Not when the steps they’re climbing hold the memory of a bygone era, pieces of Washington history. And especially not when Sykes and Campbell waited, from purchase to completion, a total of two years, one month and 19 days to walk up those steps to the place they call home.

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Art of Life BCAC, Toler strive to enhance arts in region


hen you think of the Beaufort County Arts Council, you also probably think of Joey Toler. Toler has made it his life’s goal to fulfill the arts council’s mission statement — “to be a moving force that provides cultural opportunities through initiation, support and presentation of artistic programs.” Toler’s first interest in the arts developed in high-school, when he was active in theater. His high-school theater group participated at the state level with “one acts.” One of his first, “Ledge, Ledger, Legend,” won awards and great reviews. “One of the highlights of my senior year was when I did a one-act titled ‘The Big Black Box.’ I was the voice inside the box, so no one ever saw my face, but I won the best-actor award,” said Toler. “I was really proud of that.” After high school, he majored in theater and communications at Appalachian State University. After college, Toler returned to Written by PAMELA ANDERSON Photographs By Meredith Loughlin NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2011 | WASHINGTON THE MAGAZINE • 49

Joey Toler, executive director of Beaufort County Arts Council


Washington and taught math and science at Pungo Christian Academy. “I was reviewing the multiplication tables each night before I had to teach them,” he said with a laugh. During this time, Toler performed in the second season of “Blackbeard” and approached the arts council about directing a play. He chose Kurt Vonnegut’s “Happy Birthday, Wanda June,” and rehearsals were well under way when the arts council’s board of directors decided the play was too risqué for a Beaufort County audience. Toler considers this as the beginning of his journey into arts administration. After a year of teaching, Toler moved to Asheville for a couple years before returning to Washington and a job with the Washington Daily News. It was during this time that Toler became involved in community theater. A co-worker told Toler about a new theater on the Outer Banks that was holding auditions in Raleigh, and the acting bug drew him to try out. “A woman named Faye Tucker and I were given two hours to come up with a cabaret act. We found a practice room on the NCSU campus and put a couple of songs together. When we performed, we received a standing ovation and were the first two people hired. Faye and I are still friends to this day,” he said. Toler remained at the Shell Theater until it folded. It was around this time that Toler found himself in Chapel Hill, playing keyboards and singing lead vocals with a band called The Point. When the band drifted apart, Toler returned to Washington and started freelancing for the arts council, directing children’s plays. In 1982 during a staff turnover at the organization, Toler was asked to join the staff under the direction of Judy Meier Jennette. He worked at the arts council with Jennette for two years before moving to Charlotte where he and his wife had two sons, Graham and Hank. After spending five years in Charlotte as a customer-service agent for Piedmont Airlines, Toler returned to Washington. Along with his then-wife Karen, they operated a local Chem-Dry carpet-cleaning franchise. During this time, Toler was active as a BCAC board member, served on several grant panels and continued working with the local community theater

group by directing many productions. able,” says Toler. “The arts are imporHe still occasionally performed as a tant, even in the bleakest of times, solo keyboard player and singer in var- maybe more important, because the ious venues. Toler served as the direc- arts can restore optimism. The arts tor of the Beaufort County Schools’ add to the economic development, Steppin’ Out productions for 14 and recovery, of a community and always remind you of possibilities.” years. Toler highlights the changes in the When Toler decided he was tired of cleaning carpets, he was ready to downtown area in just the past sevsell the business. He calls it “kismet” eral years. “Just look at the type of businesses that it was almost to the day of that decision that he received a call from that have come to downtown WashWanda Johnson and his former co- ington recently — River Walk Gallery, the Inner worker JenBanks Artinette. Withsans’ Center, out too much For information about the Lone Leaf convincing, Gallery and they perBeaufort County Arts Council: the Turnage suaded Toler Theater, to to join the name a few; arts council Visit even the healas program or call 252 946-2504 from 9 a.m. to ing arts, with director in 4 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays. the new yoga 2001. After a studio. The short break arts commufrom the arts The BCAC is located at 108 Gladden nity has alcouncil in Street in downtown Washington. ways thrived. 2006, when We have alhe served as ways kind of interim direchad a Bohetor for Downtown Washington on the Waterfront, mian culture lying just below the surhe returned as BCAC executive direc- face here.” There is one thing Toler thinks the tor after Johnson’s retirement in July community is missing, and that is a 2007. Toler is quick to add that in the community-theater group. “It would be nice to have a thriving time he has been director, the upheaval of the economy has created community theater group. We have a changes in the way the arts council lot of talent here in Beaufort County, and it would be great to see that does business. “It’s a challenge. We are having to come back,” he said. Toler’s busiest time of year is Ocbe more creative in our fundraising and make a much more concerted ef- tober, when BCAC’s annual Fine Arts fort regarding our finances,” he said. Show takes place. This year marked Toler says his challenge is to make the show’s 47th anniversary. “I love my job,” says Toler. “No two people realize that the arts are an indays are the same. I have the opporvestment in the community. “You can’t cut out the arts and ex- tunity to have an impact on a lot of pect your community to remain vi- people.”

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Food for thought Written by James McKelvey and Yvonne Sedgwick

ver the years of hosting people at our restaurant, The Back Bay Cafe, and helping people learn about and select wines and specialty foods in our Wine & Words stores, we’ve had the chance to interact with people at various levels of food and wine “expertise,” from wine geeks who are looking for a special vintage to people who come in and say, “I don’t really know anything about wine, but ... .” We love them all. We are passionate about food and wine. We love stories about where our food comes from and the various cultural traditions of preparing and sharing food. And we are fascinated by the long human tradition of turning grapes into wine. We’ll be sharing some of those stories, along with tips and tricks for enjoying food and wine with your family and friends, in this column. All you need to bring to the adventure is your curiosity ... and your passion. A Zen master once taught a lesson that is important in all endeavors: “In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities; in the expert’s mind, but few.” Well, we like the possibilities of food and wine. We keep an open mind as we explore this fascinating world. We don’t pose as experts; we serve more as guides. So, if you keep your cup empty and your mouth ready, we’ll be glad to have you along for the journey. As this inaugural column comes out, our favorite season for feasting and toasting is upon us — the holidays. From Thanksgiving feasts to New Year’s Eve

toasts, we’ll be using food and wine to bring together co-workers, family and friends. Most holiday celebrations are not occasions for fussy and difficult gourmet meals, but we do want our get-togethers to delight the eye and the taste buds. For us, nothing accomplishes this holiday task better than pairing bubbly and munchies. This doesn’t have to mean French Champagne and caviar (though those are certainly elegant and tasty). You can use less formal sparkling wines, such as Spanish Cava or Italian Prosecco, and pair them with simple homemade goodies prepared from the best ingredients and seasoned with love. The light on the glasses of sparkling wine and the smells from the home cooking will light up a dark, winter evening. Chef Yvonne likes to make Parmesan crisps to go with our favorite Saint-Hilaire Blanquette de Limoux from Languedoc, France. It’s easy. Grate a good Parmesano Reggiano cheese. Heat up a nonstick skillet. Drop little spoonful-size “cookies” of Parmesan into the skillet. Cook them for about half a minute, then flip them over and cook until brown. They cook really fast. But once you get the hang of it, you can whip up a stack or a bowlful. Let’s pop a cork! And happy holidays! James “The Wine Guy” McKelvey and “Chef Yvonne” Sedgwick are proprietors of Wine & Words ... & Gourmet in downtown Washington.



Turkey is the King



o one knows for certain if the Pilgrims and Indians ate turkey at the first Thanksgiving in the new world. These days turkey is the signature food for Thanksgiving. Wild turkeys were plentiful in the area settled by the Pilgrims. More than likely, they ate turkey. Then again, the Pilgrims used the word “turkey” to describe other fowl, according to several websites pertaining to turkeys and/or Pilgrims. Turkey most definitely is on the menu for the Thanksgiving buffet at the Washington Yacht & Country Club, said Jonathan Schatz, a magna cum laude graduate of the Johnson & Wales University’s culinary school in Norfolk, Va., and WYCC’s executive chef. Schatz, a 1997 graduate of Washington High School, plans to cook fresh, whole turkeys and turkey breasts for WYCC members on Thanksgiving. How many he cooks depends on an upcoming estimate of how many WYCC members will dine at the lunch buffet from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thanksgiving, he said. “I’ll probably roast mine in the oven. I don’t really have the set-up to be deep-frying turkeys. We might deep fry one. If I deep fry one, it’ll be at about 350 (degrees), and usually I do about three minutes a pound on a bird,” he said. Before the turkeys are roasted, they will be rubbed with salt and pepper, Schatz said. An herb butter will be applied under the turkeys’ skins to help keep them moist. “I like to cook my turkeys real hot for the first 20 or 30 minutes. So, I’ll probably burn the oven at 400 degrees. I’ll scale that back down until it (the internal temperature of a turkey) hits about 160 degrees, and then I’ll pull it out.” Starting off the turkeys “hot” crisps their skins, which helps retain the turkeys’ fat and natural juices, Schatz said. “We’ll probably start getting those birds ready to go the Wednesday before. … We’ll do some stuffed, some unstuffed,” he said. When it comes to cooking that perfect turkey for Thanksgiving, Schatz said, “I like to pull mine out (of the oven) about 160 degrees nice, crispy skin, and that’s the internal temperature. I check it at the joint and through the breast as well, close to the bone. You want to try to cook it to 165, but the trick is to pull it out a little bit shy of that and let it rest, and it will cook up. My turkeys, they’ll be out of the oven half an hour before they’re served. They’ll be wrapped up. They’ll still be warm. That kind of allows that juice to relax a little bit and work its way back into the meat.” Schatz will use drippings from the roasted turkeys and the giblets that come with them to make turkey gravy for those who like their turkey “wet.” Schatz won’t be the only person cooking turkeys for those who are not dining at home this Thanksgiving.

Written by MIKE VOSS

Leftover turkey?

Turkey Salad with Cranberry Dressing Mary Paulson, Chocowinity, from “Plate and Palette, A Collection of Fine Art and Food from Beaufort County,” 4 cups cooked, diced turkey 1 cup chopped celery ½ teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon pepper ½ cup mayonnaise ½ cup sour cream salted pecans or toasted almonds ¾ cup salad oil ¼ cup vinegar 1 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon sugar ½ teaspoon paprika ¼ teaspoon dry mustard dash of pepper ½ cup jellied (or homemade) cranberry sauce Mix first six ingredients. Divide into 4 or 6 servings. Sprinkle each serving with nuts. Make dressing by combining all remaining ingredients, except cranberry sauce, in a jar. Shake until blended. Gradually blend vinaigrette into cranberry sauce, beating until smooth. Spoon dressing over each salad. Yield: 4 to 6 servings.

Sage Pastry Irene Forbes, Washington, from “Plate and Palette, A Collection of Fine Art and Food from Beaufort County,” ½ cup all-purpose flour ½ teaspoon salt 3 tablespoons water ½ teaspoon sage ½ cup cornmeal 1/3 cup butter Combine dry ingredients, cut in butter, add water and roll crust to fit over casserole. Yield: 4 servings.salt and pepper, to taste. Saute vegetables in butter until limp. Add remaining ingredients and simmer until blended, about 15 to 20 minutes. The hash is better if made the day before, and it freezes well. Serves 6 to 8. NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2011 | WASHINGTON THE MAGAZINE • 55


Washington’s Golden Corral will be cooking turkeys, too. It plans on feeding about 1,500 people Thanksgiving, when the restaurant will be open from 10:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Terry Tetterton, restaurant owner, said 20 whole turkeys and 30 turkey breasts will be cooked for Thanksgiving. Golden Corral likely will have three carving stations operating Thanksgiving so diners won’t have to wait in line, Tetterton said. At those stations, diners may choose from meat from a whole turkey or carved from one of the turkey breasts. “Years ago, we only did the breasts. I guess about three years ago, company-wide, we went to the whole turkey,” Tetterton said. “No,” Tetterton said when asked if the restaurant had ever run out of turkey on Thanksgiving. “I’ve heard stories of restaurants running out of turkey, and it’s never good.” Turkey won’t be the lone meat served Thanksgiving, he said. Tetterton said customers likely will consume from 200 to 250 pounds of ham. Tyree Moore, one of the restaurant managers, explained the secret to cooking multiple turkeys. “We cook them overnight, for six hours. They hold for two hours at 165 (degrees),” Moore said. “Our overnight cookers actually use a steam process. So, they’re steamed — it’s like steam in an oven. Slow cooking is the secret, though.” Moore also explained the secret to preparing to cook a lot of turkeys. “Planning,” he said. “We probably start a few days ahead. We’ll start Tuesday night, maybe with half of what we are going to cook. Wednesday night, we’ll cook the other half. Then, we are able to reheat them in the oven on Thursday.” 56 • WASHINGTON THE MAGAZINE | NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2011

Stuffing or dressing? Does it matter as long as it’s delicious? With Thanksgiving just days away, there’s a question that must be answered? Is it stuffing or dressing that accompanies the turkey? Most people probably don’t really care whether it’s called stuffing or dressing. They do care about being called to the table when it – stuffing, dressing or whatever it’s called – is ready to eat. Clarence Gray contends it’s stuffing if cooked inside the turkey and dressing if it’s cooked outside the turkey and in a pan or casserole dish. “You’re talking about the dressing you make and bake in the oven?” Gray responded when asked if it’s stuffing or dressing. Gray prefers to eat dressing. “When you put stuffing in there, it’s soggy because it’s done been baked in the turkey,” Gray said. “The dressing tastes better because you bake it and it’s got a little crunch to it.” Bianca Gentile didn’t hesitate when posed the stuffing-versus-dressing question. “Oh, it’s definitely stuffing,” she said. Why? “That’s what we call it in my family,” she said. John Rodman also didn’t hesitate. “My grandmother always called it dressing because you dress up the turkey to make it taste better,” he said. “So, it’s always been called dressing.” Gentile replied: “Well, we stuff it in the turkey.” “What can I say? My grandmother was always right,” Rodman responded. Beth Byrd also had a quick reply to the question. “Stuffing,” she said. Again, why? “I don’t know. Our family always called it stuffing.” Paula Stephenson chuckled when she heard the question. “That’s a good question,” she said. “You know, not everybody puts it inside the bird. So, I guess, technically, it’s stuffing if it’s inside the bird, but if you just bake it inside a casserole dish, it’s dressing.” “I call it dressing — because it’s outside the bird,” she noted. “I’ve never put it in the bird.”

Perfect Pies




t’s the height of the holiday season, so thoughts are turning to family gatherings, church socials and club functions ... and that means cooks everywhere are looking for the perfect dishes to serve during their Thanksgiving, Hanukkah and Christmas feasts. No meal would be complete without dessert, and for many that means a slice of delicious, homemade pie. Since about 9500 B.C., pies are favorites of most dessert connoisseurs. Such noted cooking gurus as Martha Stewart and Paula Deen share the recipes for their special desserts with fans, but it’s hard to beat the good, old Southern favorites served up by some of Beaufort County’s best cooks. For several years, the Washington Daily News has featured favorite recipes in its column, “Pamlico Pantry.” The column showcases recipes showcased in local fundraising cookbooks published by area churches and nonprofit organizations. Here is just a sampling of local pie recipes — some have been passed down through generations and others are new favorites — that are sure to be a hit at any holiday gathering. Enjoy!

Sweet Potato Pie

Southern Pecan Pie

Coconut Pie

Jackie Carrington

Frank Steinbeck

Ephesus Free Will Baptist Church Ladies Auxiliary

St. Thomas Episcopal Church

3 eggs, beaten; 1/2 c. sugar; 1/4 tsp. salt; 1 c. corn syrup; 1/2 stick margarine; 1 tsp. vanilla; 1 c. chopped pecans; 1 unbaked pie shell.

3 eggs; 2 c. sugar; 2 c. milk; 1 stick margarine; 1 sm. pkg. coconut; 1/2 tsp. baking powder; pinch of salt; 1 tsp. vanilla; 2 Tbsp. flour; 2 regular pie shells.

Cover bottom of unbaked pie shell with pecans. Beat eggs until light. Add sugar, salt and vanilla; blend well. Add syrup and butter; blend. Pour over pecans. Bake 55 to 60 minutes at 350 degrees.

Beat the eggs. Blend in the other ingredients thoroughly and pour into two regular pie shells. Cook for about 30 minutes at 350 degrees.

Eggnog Pumpkin Pie

Mama’s Chocolate Pie

Sarah Wallace

Kimberli Jones

Kay Johnson

Pinetown Emergency Services

Smyrna Original FWB Church Ladies Auxiliary

Beaufort County Extension Homemakers Assoc.

1 (15 oz.) can solid packed pumpkin; 1 1/4 c. eggnog; 2/3 c. sugar; 3 eggs; 1 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice; 1/4 tsp. salt; 1 unbaked 9-inch pie crust.

1 c. sugar; 2 Tbsp. (heaping) flour; 3 Tbsp. (heaping) cocoa; 2 egg yolks; 1 1/2 c. milk; 1 tsp. vanilla; 1 baked pie shell.

Ladies Auxiliary 1 1/4 c. cooked, mashed sweet potatoes; 2/3 c. brown sugar; 1 tsp. cinnamon; 1/4 tsp. nutmeg; 1/4 tsp. salt; 1 egg; 1 Tbsp. butter or margarine (melted); 1 c. milk; 1 unbaked pie shell. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix all ingredients, except pie shell, thoroughly and pour into pie shell. Bake 10 minutes at 400 degrees and turn oven back to 350 degrees and bake for one hour.

Mix together pumpkin, sugar, eggs, pumpkin pie spice and salt and slowly add eggnog. Mix well and pour into pie shell and bake at 375 degrees for 60 minutes or until knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Mix sugar, flour and cocoa together thoroughly. Mix egg yolks in milk; add to flour mixture. Cook in double boiler, stirring occasionally, until thick. Add vanilla; let cool. Pour into pie shell. Use remaining egg whites to make meringue. Spread on pie filling. Brown. Yield: six servings. NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2011 | WASHINGTON THE MAGAZINE • 57

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Nov. 19th Goose Creek 10-Miler/7K Trail • Goose Creek State Park • The Tar River Running Company invites you to the inaugural running of the Goose Creek Trail Races on Nov. 19, 2011. This exciting new trail event will feature a 10-mile trail race and also have a 7k (4.34 miles) option that is half trail and half road. The 10-miler begins at 8:30 a.m. and the 7k will follow soon after. Visit ww w.g oos e cr eekt r a il rac e s . com for info.

Nov. 26th Holiday Open House • Goose Creek State Park • Come and see the festive holiday decorations in the Environmental Education Center and get into the holiday spirit before the season gets too hectic. For more information, call the park office at 252.923.2191.

Nov. 26th Rocky Hock Opry Christmas Show • Tar Heel Variety Theater • 7 p.m. For tickets and information, call 252.975.2117.

Dec. 1st Holiday Cookie Swap • NC Estuarium • Bring one dozen cookies and a cookie recipe to swap. Also enjoy a demonstration in making pull mints, a Southern traditional holiday favorite. The program is from 10:30 a.m. 11:30 a.m. with a $2 program fee. Call 252.948.0000 for reservations.

CALENDAR Dec. 10th - 11th Sounds of Christmas

• Chocowinity UMC • A musical presentation featuring a 35 voice adult choir, solos and ensembles and two songs by an excellent children’s chorus. Soul stirring narrations, DVD music and visuals complement the voices as they interpret the message of Christmas. For more information, call 252.946.1652.

Dec. 2nd - 3rd Annual Holiday Arts & Crafts Show • Washington Civic Center • Visit the Beaufort County Arts Council’s Annual Holiday Arts & Craft Show. The craft show will feature a variety of original, quality handmade items for sale by more than 45 artists and craftspeople from eastern North Carolina. Call 252.946.2504 for more information.

Dec. 3rd Annual Washington Christmas Parade • Downtown Washington • 10 a.m. This annual parade sponsored by the local Kiwanis Club and the City of Washington will stroll through Historic Downtown Washington. This will be great fun for the whole family.

Dec. 4th Historic Bath Christmas Parade • Historic Bath • 2 p.m. The Bath Community would like to invite everyone to attend their annual Christmas Parade with over 125 entries. For more information, please call 252.923.2451.

Dec. 8th Wreath Making with Evergreens • NC Estuarium • 10:30 a.m. – noon. $5 fee. Learn about fragrant evergreens and make a fresh wreath for the holidays. Enjoy refreshments in the Nature Room. Bring small garden clippers if possible. Call for 252.948.0000 reservations.

Dec. 10th - 11th Chris Cringle Craft Show • The Blind Center • 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Local crafters will display and sell their beautiful handmade products that include quilts, aprons, dish towels, jewelry, scarves, pocketbooks, wire crafts, intarsia wood art, rustic stools and hiking sticks, stained glass, wood turning and pottery. The Blind Center, 221 N. Harvey St., Washington (corner of Harvey and Third Streets). For more information, e-mail or call 252.946.6208.

Dec. 11th Christmas Open House • Historic Bath • Tour the 1751 Palmer-Marsh House, the 1830 Bonner House, the 1790 Van Der Veer House and the 1734 St. Thomas Episcopal Church, decorated in period holiday fashion. Enjoy music, apple cider and fresh-baked gingerbread. Noon - 4 p.m., free of charge. For more information, call 252.923.3971 or email at

Dec. 13th-15th Mistletoe River Roving • NC Estuarium • Mistletoe River Roving. 10:30 a.m. & 1:30 p.m. The pontoon boat makes its annual voyage to gather mistletoe, a holiday traditional. No admission fee or other cost is involved for the trip, but advance reservations are required. 252.948.0000. Children must be at least 6 years old.

Dec. 16th Big Band Christmas • Turnage Theater • Tar River Swing Band’s Big Band Christmas, 7:30 p.m. For tickets or information, call 252.975.1191.



Waterfront path to fitness


It’s good for you and good fun too Written by BETTY MITCHELL GRAY Photograph By SHAY CHILTON


f you’re looking for a good exercise program — either for weight loss or cardiac fitness — there’s no better way to get started than walking. Washington offers several locations that are ideal for those people who want to start a walking program, according to Jennifer Weatherly, health and fitness coordinator for LifeStyles Medical Fitness Center in Washington. “Walking is good because it’s something we have all learned to do,” she said. “It’s the one exercise that everyone can do. And it helps keep us young and keeps us moving.” There’s no particular time of day that’s better than another for your walk, Weatherly said. “Any time you can fit a walk in is a good time,” she said. The duration and speed of your walk depends on your goals. A brisk walk is generally considered to be between three and four miles per hour. If weight loss is your goal, three 10-minute walks are as good as a 30-minute walk. But if cardiac fitness, is your goal, you need to extend that walk and walk at a brisker pace. Think frequency, intensity and duration. The American College of Sports Medicine recommends you exercise at least 150 minutes a week to maintain heart health. That translates to a 30-minute walk at least five days a week. You also need to monitor the intensity of your walk and try to maintain your heart rate



Finding your target heart rate range? In order to receive a beneficial workout, it is important that your heart is exercising within your target heart rate range. Most of the time, it is recommended that you exercise between 65 and 90 percent of your predicted maximum heart rate. Since you need to complete a maximum treadmill test to know your exact maximum hear rate and this isn’t always practical, estimate your maximum hear rate using the calculation 220 - your age equals predicted maximum hear rate. Once you know your maximum heart rate, you can calculate the range you should keep within while exercising.

Predicted maximum heart rate ______________________. Target heart rate range 65 percent x (220 - age) = ____________________ 90 percent x (220 - age) = ____________________ Target heart rate range is _______ to ______. Source: LifeStyles Medical Fitness Center and the American College of Sports Medicine.

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between 65 percent and 90 percent of your predicted maximum heart rate. (If you don’t know how to take your pulse while exercising, use the “talk test,” Weatherly said. If you are exercising hard, but can talk without losing your breath, you’re probably within your target heart rate.) To achieve any cardiac benefit, you need to exercise at least 15 to 30 minutes at a time, and as you get fitter, the duration needs to be longer. You don’t need a gym membership to start a walking exercise program, but a gym is a good alternative if bad weather keeps you from the day’s walk. The Washington waterfront — a distance of about 1.25 miles round trip — is a wonderful place to start a walking regimen, Weatherly said. And many people enjoy walking the 1.1mile circuit around Oakdale Cemetery, she said. Other good places for a walk include Washington’s historic district along Main Street and the waterfront in Washington Park. A walking exercise program doesn’t involve much specialized equipment — just a good pair of walking shoes. “It’s very important to take care of your feet,” she said. Good walking shoes need not be very expensive, she said, but they should have a supportive arch, roomy toe box and be snug on your heels. It’s also good for walking shoes to have laces that can adjust the tightness of the shoe. And wherever and whenever you choose to walk, it should be fun. Walk with a friend or walk with your dog. Watch the seasons change. Look at the boats on the waterfront. “Look for the enjoyment factor,” Weatherly said. “If it’s not enjoyable, you won’t do it.” For more information on walking for exercise, Weatherly recommends the American Heart Association’s website, www.startwalkingnow. org, and the association’s Walking Paths mobile app for walkers — My heart, my life. To compute the calories burned during your walk, Weatherly recommends the website www.

Avoid holiday weight gain




ou know about the disheartening struggle not to gain those extra pounds during the holidays. So, now is the time to resolve not to let it happen to you. You have to have a plan of attack. Here we go. Avoid the dreaded leftover Halloween candy. Either you are stealing from your children’s bags, which you have no business doing, or you live out in the country or in a retirement community and stocked the house, just in case they bused in thousands of trick-or-treaters. Rid your house of the Snickers, Kit Kats and Twixes. Improper disposal of the little wrappers will not suffice, since the evidence will be on your thighs. Watch your social life. If you have a social life, it usually picks up during the holidays. Whether it involves swank cocktail parties, oyster roasts or fall festivals and family dinners, for many, the time between Thanksgiving and the new year is party time. You have to have a strategy if you want to keep your old wardrobe. The first rule is to anticipate any eating event by “paying for it first.” People are a lot more motivated to work out or eat lightly knowing they have something special coming up, rather than paying for it the next day. The second rule is to not show up hungry. Have a light, healthful snack before the party. The third rule is to make food choices with your brain. Put on your plate what you think you need and get the heck away from the table. If you blow it, there’s always tomorrow. But take action tomorrow, not in January. Keep regular meal times. This can be hard to do, but it is when we skip meals that we snack ourselves to a tune of a thousand calories. Even when life gets a little hectic, don’t forget to visit the grocery store for meal basics. Keep the counters clean. Nothing, zilch — no tempting, holiday morsels are allowed on the premises. Get apples, oranges and pears without a bunch of sugar fat and flour thrown in. Miss the holiday smells? Light a

scented candle or make a cup of spiced tea. Plan indoor activities. I hate the time change this time of year. Or rather, I don’t like my home-from-work afternoons spent loitering in the kitchen. More time lingering around food leads to food in my mouth. Get dinner started and do something else. Read a book, take a quick walk — just get away from eating opportunities before the meal. I miss those afternoon walks that two weeks ago were in the sunlight and now would take place in the dark. Put on your walking shoes. “I’m taking the holidays off,” is not acceptable speech. And if you weren’t doing anything to begin with, it’s actually a good time to start. You need the stress relief and a calorie outlet. Mornings are the best time for many to work out so that nothing that happens later in the day will get in the way. But whatever your time is, find it. Don’t wait until after the holidays to slog your heavier self to a crowded gym with the others. Do it now. Enjoy this time. Is that possible? Sometimes, we get so caught up with what we are supposed to do, we forget why we are doing it. You have time to plan to do it differently this year, so gear up. If that holiday sweater is starting to get a little snug, perhaps it’s time to take notice of the heavy-traffic sugarplum freeway to your mouth. I call it nickels-anddimes syndrome. Just as we flitter away money, we flitter in calories. I hate counting calories, especially this time of year, but an extra 3,500 calories adds up to a pound of fat. If you eat an extra 500 calories, seven days a week … guess what? Ho, ho, ho. Katherine Tate is a registered dietitian with LifeStyles Medical Fitness Center and a certified diabetes educator with Quintiles. She has written a nutrition column for the Washington Daily News, where portions of this article appeared previously. NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2011 | WASHINGTON THE MAGAZINE • 62


‘Welcoming feeling’ in Bath

View from West bank



erenity and history mark the character of North Carolina’s first town, established in the 1690s. The state’s first port of entry became a trading post for furs and tobacco. The location made water transport easy with open access to the Pamlico River, Pamlico Sound and the Atlantic Ocean. It was also ideally suited for the nefarious activities of one Edward Teach, known by some as the pirate “Blackbeard.” Unconfirmed stories persist that the merciless man of the sea was a peaceful, involved citizen while in port. His fate was sealed — and stories became legend — when Blackbeard was killed in a naval battle near Ocracoke in 1718. The past is present, thanks to restoration efforts that have saved the St. Thomas Church, the Palmer-Marsh House and other historic structures. The original town limits are the boundaries for a National Register historic district. Bath remains a small town, and contented residents wouldn’t have it any other way. “What I’m most proud of as a resident is the overall welcoming feeling of our town,” said John LoGelfo Jr. “There are two bridges that bring you to Bath from either East or West and neither has a stop sign. The main road running through town does not have a single traffic light to stop you … always someone at the Marina to spotlight you under the bridge and into the harbor. “

Source: North Carolina Historic Sites




Why I love Washington

The river beckoned



ashington is an unbelievably wonderful and beautiful place to live. In 1974, I moved to Washington with my beautiful bride, Nancey, from Iowa City, IA, where we were living while Nancey finished her senior year at the University of Iowa. We married when we were barely 21 years old, and one year later we were ready to settle in somewhere and start working in our fields of interest: Nancey in social work and I in the boating industry. At the suggestion of my college roommate who had relocated to Washington, we came for a visit, took in a view of the Pamlico River at Hawkins Beach, enjoyed a daysail from Summer Haven then feasted on steamed crabs. We were captivated and fell in love with the river. We couldn’t wait to pack up and move to Washington. Jobs were easy to find back then. Nancey started work right away at the Beaufort County Department of Social Services, and I worked in pursuit of a career in boat building. I worked at Moss Planing Mill, did carpentry work with Dick Leach, started a boat repair business and even worked at Beaufort County Hospital. In 1978, I worked with Joe and Bill McCotter at their marina for five years and then leased the marina for 10 years as Carolina Wind Yachting Center. Once Nancey and I were happily settled, we spread the word to family members, and over the course of a few years both of my brothers, Al and Keith, their families, my sister Peggy, and my parents moved to Washington. My father, Charles Norwood — a Presbyterian minister from Charlotte — retired with my mother, Madge, to be closer to grandchildren, sailing, fishing and life on the Pamlico River. This could never have been planned in advance. Our children, Jules and Kelsey, enjoyed their school years here and were well prepared for college, and life by excellent teachers and role models. It remains a wonderful place to raise a family. The people of Washington look out for each other and care about the welfare of everyone in the community. It 66 • WASHINGTON THE MAGAZINE | NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2011

Jules Norwood (left) and David Norwood enjoy working on the river.

is impressive. I continue to be surrounded by an extended family of friends, work associates, fellow musicians and sailors. These are the people who make Washington special and unique. I am so grateful for my church family at First Presbyterian Church. When you have something to celebrate, they are there. When you need lifting-up during difficult times, they are there. Now, as a 60-year-old, I am scheming and planning to semi-retire in a few years. I enjoy working with Jules in our marina business, Carolina Wind Yachting Center at Havens Wharf on Main Street — a true family affair. We are blessed to have the beautiful Pamlico River on our doorsteps, providing plenty of recreation and the most magnificent sunsets on earth. Washington will always be home. David Norwood is president of Carolina Wind Yachting Center. His son Jules is vice-president and in charge of ‘just about everything.’ Carolina Wind is a Pacific Seacraft dealer and offers sailboat charters, boat slip and mooring leases, and office rentals in the marina. Both David and Jules share a passion for ocean sailing and island hopping. David is a musician and can often be heard playing at area events, and in First Presbyterian Church. His daughter Kelsey works in Mumbai, India for L’Oreal.


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w w w. uhse a s t.c o m

Washington the Magazine  

A celebration – in print – of the character and charm of Washington, NC.

Washington the Magazine  

A celebration – in print – of the character and charm of Washington, NC.