WILMA - July 2020

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WILMA

JULY 2020

WILMINGTON’S SUCCESSFUL WOMAN

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POWER OF

PROTEST An unplanned leader, Lily Nicole helps guide a movement forward

Making It Work

Juggling work and family in COVID times

Summer Ready

Looks to beat the heat


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july 2020

14 47 25 8 SPOTLIGHT

43 CALENDAR

10 HEALTH: Tech talks

46 THE SCENE: Art exposure

12 TASTE: Raise a glass

47 TAKE 5: Teacher of the year

14 STYLE: Garden variety

48 MEN’S ROOM: Quarantine coiffure

Check out WILMA magazine here:

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34 22 L ATE SUMMER BLOOMS: Adjusting the Azalea Festival 25 HOME WORK: Navigating the juggle 34 C REATING CONVERSATION: Lily Nicole on what happens next

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News changes fast, and sometimes so do WILMA covers. When we first began planning the July issue, many things were different about the world we live in, which says a lot during a pandemic. The killing of George Floyd in May and subsequent reactions through protests, responses from corporations and public figures, and legislative debate spread nationwide. In Wilmington, a group has been protesting daily since Floyd’s death in late May. At times, there have been tense moments and interactions with police officers, but those who have gathered at City Hall have, as of press time, managed to avoid some of the escalations and damage seen in other cities. In response to all that’s happening, we quickly shifted gears. We added a Conversations on Race panel talk into our June Leadership Accelerator series, and we asked one of those panelists to be interviewed for the July issue of WILMA. Lily Nicole didn’t intend to help organize a local protest movement, but that’s where she and other members of the now-dubbed the lowercase leaders find themselves. When it came to picking a cover to reflect all that, this month’s was a no-brainer. W

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Publisher Rob Kaiser rkaiser@wilmingtonbiz.com

MELISSA HEBERT is a Wilmington-based

photographer who has had her work featured in national campaigns and magazines, including WILMA. Hebert studied photography at the Cleveland Institute of Art and specializes in editorial, portrait, and wedding photography. Hebert photographed this month’s style feature on page 14. melissahebertphoto.com

President Robert Preville rpreville@wilmingtonbiz.com Associate Publisher Judy Budd jbudd@wilmingtonbiz.com

Editor Vicky Janowski vjanowski@wilmingtonbiz.com Senior Account Executive Craig Snow csnow@wilmingtonbiz.com

CHRISTINE HENNESSEY is a writer and

marketer with an MFA in creative writing from UNCW. Her articles have appeared in Wilmington Magazine and The Billfold, and her fiction has been published in journals such as Joyland and storySouth. She profiles protest organizer Lily Nicole on page 34.

TERESA MCLAMB, a native of southeastern

North Carolina, is an avid traveler, art collector, and cat lover. She is an award-winning freelance writer and PR consultant who holds a BA in journalism from UNC-Chapel Hill and an MA in English from UNCW. McLamb talks with TCS Healthcare Technologies CEO Deborah Keller on page 10.

DREWE SMITH is an editorial stylist and

creative director who specializes in photo direction and styling. Drewe is a Wilmington native and co-owns Drewe and Kate Branding Co., where she translates her love of design into branding photo shoots, logo design, and website building for a diverse collection of businesses. Smith styled this month’s nature-inspired fashion feature on page 14.

TERAH WILSON is a Wilmington-based

freelance photojournalist with over sixteen years’ experience in photography and art. She is a mom of three, an artist, and an avid coffee drinker. Her passion is to capture everyday moments in a way that reveals the extravagance of life! Wilson photographed Lily Nicole and recent protests downtown on page 34 as well as Stephanie Sheehan and her family on page 27. terahwilson.com

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Account Executive Ali Buckley abuckley@wilmingtonbiz.com Office & Audience Development Manager Sandy Johnson sjohnson@wilmingtonbiz.com Events Director Maggi Apel mapel@wilmingtonbiz.com Events/Digital Assistant Elizabeth Stelzenmuller events@wilmingtonbiz.com Design & Media Coordinator Molly Jacques production@wilmingtonbiz.com Content Marketing Coordinator Morgan Mattox mmattox@wilmingtonbiz.com Contributing Designer Suzi Drake art@wilmingtonbiz.com Digital Editor Johanna Cano jcano@wilmingtonbiz.com Fashion Stylist Ashley Duch Grocki Contributors Tim Bass, Jenny Callison, Meghan Corbett, Nina Bays Cournoyer, Christine Hennessey, Jessica Maurer, Teresa McLamb, Elizabeth White, Lori Wilson Contributing Photographers Logan Burke, Erin Costa, Megan Deitz, Melissa Hebert Photography, Michael Cline Spencer, Terah Wilson Founder Joy Allen Subscribe For a one-year subscription, please send $26.00 (check or money order) to: WILMA, 219 Station Rd., Ste. 202, Wilmington, NC 28405, or call 343-8600 x201 www.WILMAmag.com


WILMA’S

LEADERSHIP INITIATIVE FOUNDING SPONSORS

CORPORATE SPONSORS

“There have been some vital themes that have emerged in our GE Nuclear

Lily Loizeaux HR Leader GE Hitachi Nuclear

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culture over these past several challenging months. They’re at the core of what has kept our essential work going and kept our team healthy. It begins and ends with our purpose, the WHY we pour our energy into each day: We build on our legacy, boldly innovating to bring reliable carbon-free power to the world. The HOW is just as important. It’s not simply about respect, but true care for one another. It’s a defining piece of what makes a strong leader and a strong team: Seek to understand different perspectives and experiences, remove obstacles for others, trust those closest to the work to be the experts, and compassionately enable what they need.”

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W2W UPDATES

photo by MICHAEL CLINE SPENCER

WILMA’s Women to Watch Leadership Initiative has updates to share as we continue to work on the effort’s core mission of helping develop more women leaders in our area. Here’s what we’ve been up to with various W2W Leadership Initiative programs and what’s coming up next: LEADERSHIP ACCELERATOR: Five Mondays; five engaging discussions on how to lead in a variety of situations. This year’s Leadership Accelerator conference took place virtually, with a different taped or live video broadcasting each week on WILMA’s social media channels. For more on the topics, turn to page 38. And to catch up on the videoes, go to WILMALeadership.com. LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE: In June, WILMA’s Leadership Institute, made up of thirty-two women who are part of this year’s cohort for the nine-month program, participated in a virtual skills workshop on effective pitching of ideas and projects. They also met in their peer advisory groups and held discussions on best practices while working remotely. WILMA LEADERSHIP EMAIL: If you haven’t checked it out yet, be sure to read WILMA’s Monday emails, which focus on leadership topics and profiles. WILMA NETWORK: Members of the WILMA Network, made up of sponsors of the Women to Watch Leadership Initiative, turned to the web to hold meetups in June. IN THE LOOP: Keep up to date with these and other Leadership Initiative programs as well as applications announcement by going to WILMAmag.com or signing up for the WILMA Leadership email at WILMAmag.com/email-newsletter.

- Vicky Janowski, WILMA editor, and Maggi Apel, events director, Co-directors of the Women to Watch Leadership Initiative W2W@WILMAmag.com

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The Women to Watch logo: When you see this throughout WILMA’s pages, it means this is a woman on the rise to know, an experienced leader to learn from, or a local program worth checking out. W

12 REFINED TASTES: Running area distilleries with unique visions 22 TRANSPLANTING THE AZALEAS: North Carolina Azalea Festival navigates new realities this year 47 HEAD OF THE CLASS: New Hanover County Schools' Educator of the Year Elizabeth Felts

JULY

leadership opportunities

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UNCW’s Center of Innovation and Entrepreneurship hosts a webinar 9-10 a.m. about how to do BUSINESS AS A FOOD TRUCK at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. The CIE event info page includes a link to a Google form for those who are interested to fill out, including those interested in serving for Minority Enterprise Development Week October 5-10. Info: uncw.edu/cie/events The PARTNERSHIP ADVISORY GROUP, which has been discussing the potential sale of New Hanover Regional Medical Center, meets again 5:30-7:30 p.m. at UNCW’s Burney Center, located at Price Drive on the campus. Free parking is available at Lot M near the center. Social distancing guidelines will be in place, and attendees will be required to wear face coverings. For those who can’t attend in-person, the open portions of the meeting will be available to watch through Zoom. Info: NHRMCfuture.org

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CAPE FEAR CREW, Commercial Real Estate Women, meets for walking and networking at Summer Rest Trail at 5:30 p.m. Park at the SunTrust building at 1979 Eastwood

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Road and meet at the parking lot. RSVP: info@ capefearcrew.org. PORT CITY YOUNG PROFESSIONALS is tentatively planning for in-person events July 9 at the Wilmington Sharks game at Buck Hardee Field 6:30-9:30 p.m. and July 15 at Cape Fear Customs 5:30-8:30 p.m. Pop-up virtual networking sessions through Zoom are scheduled for July 1, 20, and 29. Info: pcypapp.com/events BANNER YEAR BLUEPRINT (BYB), The Inspiration Lab’s signature program, holds two session times this month. The quarterly workshops are designed to help participants set goals and stay on track. This month’s virtual workshops are 7-9 p.m. July 9 and 11:30 a.m.1:30 p.m. July 10. Info: theinspirationlab.co/ banner-year-blueprint-online

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YWCA Lower Cape Fear holds a POTLUCK FOR PEACE, youth edition, on “Racial Justice and the ’Rona” at 6 p.m. on Facebook Live. RSVP: https://bit.ly/2ChvMFD

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Wilmington Chamber of Commerce members can attend this month’s CHAMBER CONNECTIONS 11:45 a.m.-1 p.m., sponsored by Salt Air Heating/Cooling. Details will be posted on the chamber’s website and social media channels if the event is held in-person or virtually. Info: wilmingtonchamber.org/events

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UNCW’s Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship hosts a “MIDSUMMER SOCIALIZE NETWORKING EVENT” 5-7:30 p.m. Utilizing a new app called Socialize for the event, the CIE is also partnering with local bottle shops that are offering discounts on their beverages for participants. There’s no program or presentation, just a chance to connect, cool off with a cold beverage, and have conversations with the startup and small business community. Info: uncw.edu/cie/ events

Sign up for the WILMA Weekly newsletter at WILMAmag.com. To include your group's event, email W2W@WILMAmag.com

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photo c/o Cameron Art Museum

CAM PADDLES ALONG

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Despite continued impacts from the coronavirus limitations, the Cameron Art Museum (with its Connect with CAM inflatable duck mascots that have taken over the 17th Street facility) continues to offer a mix of programming this month. Those include Art Explorers, storytime and artmaking for kids ages five and under, Tuesdays and Thursdays at 10 a.m. on Facebook Live; Kids@CAM projects online; a new virtual exhibit “Claude Howell: Carolina Interpreter�; and more. Info: cameronartmuseum.org

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UNCW PROFESSOR EARNS FELLOW TITLE

ALISON TAYLOR, a UNCW professor in the biology and marine biology department, has been selected to receive the title of Fellow of the Marine Biological Association. “The title is awarded in recognition of distinguished and long-term contributions to marine biology at the highest level, in areas that include research, education, outreach, or professional and public service,” according to officials. Marine Biological Association is based at the marine research laboratory in Plymouth, United Kingdom, and is a professional body for marine scientists with about 1,600 members worldwide. Taylor services as the director of the University of North Carolina Wilmington Dillaman Microscopy Laboratory, which supports research and applied learning projects. Her research focuses on the fundamental biology of marine protists (single-celled organisms), university officials say. “This is an impressive honor in recognition of Dr. Taylor’s sustained outstanding marine biological research, teaching, service, and overall contributions to the discipline,” says Stuart Borrett, UNCW’s associate provost for research and innovation.

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HAWKINS JOINS NEXT GLASS EXEC TEAM

Wilmington-based Next Glass has announced additions to its executive team. Next Glass is the parent company of Untappd, a social app with a focus on the beer industry. Next Glass also has offices in Charlotte and Durham. ALISON HAWKINS was named chief financial officer. Hawkins has previous experience leading a sponsor-backed, highgrowth company through multiple acquisitions and most recently served in an executive role at iSolved HCM, company officials say. The changes were made following an investment in Next Glass Inc. by Providence Strategic Growth, an affiliate of Providence Equity Partners, in March to help grow the business. Next Glass also announced Chris Herron is chief technology officer and Tom Maneschijn as vice president of European operations. “Alison, Chris, and Tom each bring a wealth of relevant experience in highgrowth environments and impressive track records of building and leading great teams,” Next Glass CEO Trace Smith says.

ant more WILMA? Check out our daily emails, which include even more profiles and stories for Wilmington’s successful women. To sign up for the free emails, go to WILMAmag.com

GILBERT SCHOLARSHIP WINS IMPACT FUNDS

DARLENA MOORE, founder of The Gilbert Scholarship Inc. that provides scholarships for college students who were in foster care, recently received a donation of $17,800 from ImpactClub Wilmington. Last month, Moore was one of three nonprofit representatives to present to the club about their work. Moore, who has used proceeds from sales of her Mountain Girl Granola (mountaingirlinitiative.com) to fund the scholarships, expects to have given out sixteen-eighteen scholarships throughout her program by the end of this year. “When asked, most youth from foster care will tell you they want a college degree, but only 3 percent will get one,” Moore says. “But, the youth I am helping right here in Wilmington through The Gilbert Scholarship are graduating from community college, and many want to continue on to four-year universities. “This award from the Wilmington ImpactClub will help move more students from foster care closer to their dream of college,” she adds. There are ten ImpactClub groups across the U.S. In 2017, Chris Spivey and his wife, Christy, launched the Wilmington one. Once a quarter, members meet to hear presentations from nominated nonprofits – June’s was held via Zoom – and then decide who will receive the meeting’s collected pool. At each event, a participating member donates $100.

Have a suggestion for a local woman or group to spotlight? Email us: wilma@WILMAmag.com WILMAmag.com

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NEW TECH

IN TOWN CEO PLANTS HEALTH TECH COMPANY IN WILMINGTON

by TERESA MCLAMB photo by MEGAN DEITZ

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eing hand-picked to succeed the founder and CEO of a company could be both humbling and terrifying, but DEBORAH KELLER appears to take it in stride. CEO of TCS Healthcare Technologies, which just opened its East Coast satellite office on Chestnut Street in Wilmington, Keller had been with the company for six years when in 2017 the CEO, Rob Pock, handed her a Post-it note with the date March 15, 2019, on it. “He said, ‘That’s my retirement date,’ and he began preparing me to take over,” Keller recalls. A Nashville native, Keller earned

her BS in nursing from Tennessee State University. She holds multiple certifications. TCS’s multi-faceted software products are designed to support health care case managers and authorization managers who help patients navigate the health system. For example, a newly diagnosed patient is assigned to a case manager who helps the patient get their medication and helps their family deal with the changes and other needs. Procedures requested by doctors often have to go to the insurance company for authorization, Keller notes. “They use software like ours to look at the medical case and best treatment plan and to make sure the claim gets paid,” she says. Before moving to TCS in 2006, Keller was a vice president at Banner Health Network in Arizona where she selected one of TCS’s products, ACUITY, to handle Banner’s case management software needs. TCS personnel occasionally called asking her to work for them. “They were such good partners,” Keller says. “The implementation (of their software) was wonderful, and I made friendships with the implementation team, and we kept in touch. About every two years, the VP of clinical services called me and said she wanted to retire. I said I didn’t want to live in California. Ironically, in 2012, my husband, who is a pilot, was upgraded to captain, and they wanted him to transfer to Sacramento. So, I called her. I visited and talked to them, and it was like no time had passed.” Since signing on with TCS as clinical services director, she also served as chief operations officer until her appointment last year as CEO. During the transition period, Rob and his wife, Esther, would disappear for weeks, Keller says. “They would take off for these 100-day river tours in Europe where I couldn’t find him. They did a few of those, and I didn’t burn the place down, so we figured between me and the rest of the team, we could handle it. On March 17, 2019, he walked in and handed me his office key,” Keller says. “They’re amazing people. They started


the company in 1983. They’ve got a 501(c) (3) through which they support a school in Burma.” Keller states that TCS’s client base is about 30% in California and 70% along the Eastern Seaboard. Having a second location closer to most of their clients made sense. Corporate headquarters remain in California. “It was a strategic business move,” she says. “We really wanted a place that was attractive for us to hire folks, and our biggest footprint of clients is along the East Coast. It makes sense for us; a lot of the organizations and conferences of industry regulators are out of D.C. It puts us closer to the subject-matter experts in our space.” She also noted the ease of recruiting people to live near the beach. Other considerations are the tax implications and the lower regulatory burden for employers as compared to California and some other states. “North Carolina is more business-friendly,” she said. “We’re a small business with about $7 million in revenue each year.” Five employees have been hired for the Wilmington office thus far, but plans are to hire another ten to twelve over the next year. The positions are primarily in sales and account management and project management, she says. Potential employees would benefit from having a clinical background; Keller says she can teach the technology. “I love hiring to train the skill. I’m looking for a fit to our culture and work ethic. Knowledge of managed care is important,” she says. Companywide, there are employees working from seven states. Wilmington’s salary range will be about $40,000 to $90,000 per year. As part of the retirement transition, TCS did a partial stock sale, Keller notes. “We are an HCAP portfolio company,” she says referring to the resulting investment from private equity firm HCAP Partners. “They’re what is called an impact investor. “We always wanted to make an impact in the communities,” she continues. “The HCAP Partners Gainful Jobs Approach includes creating and maintaining high-quality jobs. We don’t want to create low-paying jobs. Our goal is to create a trajectory of growth.” W WILMAmag.com

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REFINED

TASTES

RUNNING AREA DISTILLERIES WITH UNIQUE VISIONS by JESSICA MAURER photos by LOGAN BURKE

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s the American consumer has become more health conscious, the desire for products with natural ingredients has extended beyond the food and beauty industries. It’s had an impact on the alcoholic beverage industry, as well. On a national level, beverage companies have responded to this trend with lower alcohol beverages such as ultra-light beers and hard seltzers that offer fewer carbs and calories but often still contain sugar and additives. Here in the Port City, two women-led beverage companies have taken a different approach. AMY KUCHAR (above), co-founder Rosé Water, was on a personal health and wellness journey when she and her husband, Rob, began experimenting with ideas for their wine-water hybrid. Together, the couple owns

and operates Executive Bev, a global wine supplier, and Boutique Bev, a boutique beverage company that specializes in designing brand concepts, brand incubation, and helping small, family-owned wineries around the world increase their distribution. Amy Kuchar wanted to find a way to merge her family’s wine business with her health and wellness interests. She says it became a passion of hers to create an adult beverage for the healthy, active lifestyle consumer. The Kuchars work directly with a small group of winemakers in France’s Loire Valley to create a blend of French pinot noir, gamay, and cabernet franc grapes that is then transported to the Austrian Alps, where it is blended with sparkling water. Now, one of Kuchars’ main roles is furthering the development of the concept by exploring ways to bring new wine water varietals to the market. “My goal is to promote the importance of knowing what we’re putting


into our bodies and where it comes from, even when it comes to our adult beverage choices,” Amy Kuchar said. BROOKE BLOOMQUIST, master distiller at New Hanover County’s first distillery, Blue Shark Vodka, co-founded the company with her father, Mark, in 2018. The family-run business now includes her mother, Niki, and brother, Brett. Brooke Bloomquist says that from the start, the family knew they wanted to work with a North Carolina farmer to source the mash bill for their vodka. They selected Carolina sweet corn grown by farmer Jeff Griffin in Polkton. The sweet corn mash bill is fermented, then distilled four times and filtered three times to remove impurities before it’s diluted to 40 percent ABV with reverse-osmosis filtrated water. “The result is an incredibly pure, clean, super smooth product that is naturally gluten-free,” Brooke Bloomquist says. “There are a lot of people out there who are very conscious about what they’re putting into their bodies, as well as a lot of people that choose to be gluten-free, and Blue Shark Vodka fits the bill.” While the Kuchars have launched a new beverage category from their Wilmington headquarters, the Bloomquist family has been instrumental in paving the way for other distilleries in New Hanover County. At the time they were seeking permitting, there were no other distilleries in the county, so the guidelines that are in place today, are ones that Brooke and her family helped establish. Operating a distillery in North Carolina, where the distribution of spirits is run by the state, has presented its own set of challenges, says Brooke Bloomquist. “Each county has to place their own orders for distribution from the central warehouse in Raleigh, so each time we get a new account it’s something to celebrate,” she says. “Having built a company from the ground up, seeing your product on the shelf is so rewarding.” The company hopes to soon expand distribution of its award-winning vodka beyond North Carolina, with Florida likely to be the next target market. In addition to ensuring the best possible ingredients go into their beverages, WILMAmag.com

both Amy Kuchar and Brooke Bloomquist are interested in clean-water initiatives and conservation. Amy Kuchar grew up in Flint, Michigan, a city known for its water-quality issues. Her company has pledged 5 percent of all Rosé Water sales to Cape Fear River Watch, a local nonprofit organization dedicated to the improvement and preservation of the health, beauty, cleanliness, and heritage of the Cape Fear River basin. Having lived on or near the coast for

most of her life, Brooke Bloomquist is also passionate about coastal conservation issues. Her company has partnered with marine life artist Wyland, whose mural, Whaling Wall #048 Coastal Dolphins can be found on the side of the Coastline Inn in downtown Wilmington. Wyland created an image that will appear on a limited number of Blue Shark bottles throughout the summer of 2020. The limited-edition bottles will support the Wyland Foundation, dedicated to protecting the world’s oceans. W

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plant

based

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nce upon a time, gardening was an old lady’s game, and wearing “green” conjured up visions of droopy silhouettes in drab colors. Now, urban gardening is a major deal, and designers have perfected putting the chic in eco-chic, letting raw materials tell their story in a much more savvy way. Accessories made from natural goods such as wood, hemp, and leaves have grown up, elevating from simple novelty items to luxe statement pieces. (No more shop class jewelry for you!) The selection is robust. A structured wooden purse? We found it. A palm leaf lunchbox? Got that, too. A macrame water bottle holder? You betcha. These pieces can easily sashay from poolside to tableside in one graceful stroke. And, unlike their less refined relatives, will pair seamlessly with any personal style, be it Boheme or bombshell. W

Petunia crochet SWING TOP and SWING SKIRT and Daybreak bikini BATHING SUIT in marigold, all available at Tusc

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STYLED BY DREWE SMITH | PHOTOS BY MELISSA HEBERT | INTRO BY NINA BAYS COURNOYER

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Balconette BATHING SUIT top in tangerine, Blossom SHORTS in star white linen, Half United Portau-Prince HOOP EARRINGS, Lost Island crochet BOTTLE HOLDER, and Spectrum shell NECKLACE, all available at Tusc

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The Sienna ruffled TOP in pistachio, The Bonnie SHORTS in pistachio, Spectrum EARRINGS, wood circle CLUTCH, and Half United balsa wood BANGLES, all available at Tusc

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Lindeza mini DRESS in natural, hand-woven palm LUNCHBOX. Spectrum EARRINGS, and shell NECKLACE, all available at Tusc

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MODELS: Colombe Martin Lauren McKinney (UC Models) HAIR: SET Blowout Bar MAKEUP: Danielle Forte WARDROBE: Tusc

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TRANSPLANTING

THE AZALEAS by Jenny Callison photo by Megan Deitz

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rchestrating a major, timehonored event is always a challenge. Postponing and then reimagining that event in different circumstances requires a real maestro and an ensemble of players who can work through difficulties and keep the beat going. That event is the North Carolina Azalea Festival, and on the podium holding the baton is executive director ALISON BARINGER ENGLISH. Since festival officials’ March 12 decision to postpone it – three weeks before the opening activities – English, the festival board, and a well-tuned network of volunteers have had to take a fresh look at their plans through the lens of COVID-19. Those plans currently call for holding the festival’s major activities in the fall. The Azalea Festival Garden Party is scheduled for September 16. A concert featuring Sublime with Rome, along with Michael Franti & Spearhead, is planned for October 16. The following day is a performance by the Avett Brothers, with Chatham County Line opening for them. These popular events will need to be conducted in accordance with social distancing requirements, English says. “Among our guiding principles, safety and health are always number one. We’re talking to state and local officials,” she continues, adding that Azalea Festival organizWILMAmag.com

ers will keep looking to these same officials for guidance and the latest updates on the virus. Since the Azalea Festival has a significant economic impact on the area, English and her team will seek to maximize revenues within a safe environment. “The Azalea Festival brings in an estimated $50 million to the economy, benefiting small businesses, hotels, and restaurants,” she says. “People buy new clothes and have their hair done for (the event). There is a huge trickle-down effect. We know a lot of businesses rely on it.” To determine what festival elements to stage this fall, English says officials have looked at which ones do the most to drive the local economy. With dates nailed down for the Garden Party and the two concerts, planners are considering when to hold the street fair and the parade. “Those large events are the ones we have to keep safest,” she explains. “Everyone is asking that question now: How do we keep people safe but provide (economic) stimulus, a sense of celebration and community, being neighborly. How do we serve food? How do we regulate that?” English is able to share ideas with colleagues around the world through her involvement with the International Festivals & Events Association. She is also chairelect of the IFEA Foundation. “Through IFEA, I’ve been on a call once a week with other event leaders. We are all keeping each other informed on what our future plans are,” English says. This year’s festival postponement isn’t English’s first retooling rodeo. A special events aficionado even when she was growing up in Canton, Ohio, she took a semester off from college to work at Walt Disney World as part of the theme park’s college program. That was in 2001. “I was there during the September 11 attacks,” she says. “Talk about events cancellation and retooling. I worked at Spaceship Earth as an attraction hostess. Half the people (in the park) were stuck there, worried, preoccupied. We were try-

North Carolina Azalea Festival navigates new realities this year ing to still give them some joy. There was a wide range of nationalities: I specifically remember a man of Muslim descent. We were trying to be gracious and treat everybody the same.” Following that early lesson in crisis management, English returned to University of North Carolina Wilmington and finished her bachelor’s degree with majors in communications studies and English. She graduated in December 2004 and began work for the Azalea Festival in July 2005. “At that time we had an office manager, the only full-time position,” she says of her early days. “That’s where I started. My responsibilities were mostly to greet guests and keep the website up. As I grew in experience, I took on more.” Now the festival employs an office manager and events coordinator in addition to English. The volunteer structure is extensive. In addition to the festival board, there are 120 committee chairs. Everyone has been involved in reshaping the festival for later this year, while laying plans for 2021. “Stephen Meinhold, the 2020 president, will continue as president for the 2020 event in the fall,” English says. “Our new president, Deirdre McGlone-Webb, heads up next year’s festival.” The past few months have allowed festival organizers to brainstorm ways to communicate more effectively within the organization and with sponsors. And, there’s an initiative to come up with a festival mascot; area residents are invited to submit ideas for a name and a design. “When you go through crisis, difficult challenges, it’s an opportunity for creativity to shine,” English says. “We have to find ways of keeping people involved. A lot of people don’t realize the Azalea Festival is an independent 501(c)(3) organization. While we have great relationships with all the local governmental agencies, we have to stand on our own. Community support is an important part of us.” W JULY 2020

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YWCA IS ON A MISSION Thank you for taking a STAND with us! YWCA of the Lower Cape Fear offers affordable, licensed child care, after school program, summer camp, and an aquatics center. We are on a mission to serve women and families in our community. We provide a safe space for women and girls. We advocate for racial justice, civil rights, women's empowerment, economic advancement, youth enrichment, health and safety.

ywca-lowercapefear.org 910-799-6820

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Learning to Juggle P

By Elizabeth White

COVID-19 has moms reaching for strategies and solutions arenting is tough even in the best of times. But, how about in the midst of a global pandemic? The answer, quite possibly, is downright daunting. The last day of in-person school instruction was March 13. There was not a lot of warning to prepare for remote learning and having kids home suddenly 24/7. Gone were the cherished three hours of preschool time, eight hours of school, and even additional hours of extracurricular activities. Life as many parents knew it came to a standstill. It was enough for even the best parents to throw up the white flag and surrender. But, as any parent knows, parenting is about adapting and getting through each phase – just like those days of sleepless nights and potty training. Each parent had their own unique way of dealing with the challenges COVID-19 presented, and a new normal was embraced. Enter interrupted Zoom meetings, remote learning, and newly structured days. Whether parents were at home or working full time, adjustments were made.

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STEPHANIE SHEEHAN, a photographer and mom of two and with one on the way (due in July), says the changes had a huge effect on her normal schedule. “My mornings, which I used to have free for photo sessions, meetings, errands, and doctor appointments, were spent homeschooling pre-K and first grade,” she says. Sheehan tried to cherish this new quality time but the duration sometimes took its toll. “After all, it was over two months.” She not only had to deal with a whole new routine but also with being pregnant during the pandemic. That presented a new worry. “It has been a scary time to be a mom,” she says. “The thought of someone getting sick or hurting themselves created a constant fear of going to the pediatrician or ER.” Her juggling act of teaching kids and entertaining them, all while preparing for a new baby, was admittedly overwhelming. “Trying to balance positive and creative experiences with my kids while keeping up with my work and finding my own inner peace was challenging, to say the least,” she says. photo by terah wilson

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ALLISON OVERHOLT, mother of two boys ages seven and four, suddenly had to adjust to a new role as working mom plus teacher. “I had to step in with distance learning,” she says. Working at Trader Joe’s, she had to jump in and out of two distinct worlds. Overholt recalls it was tough at first. “I went straight from a 5 a.m. start, six-, seven-, or eight-hour shift into teacher mode for two kiddos and then into just-mom mode after that,” she says. Overholt credits her work as being a blessing. “My job was awesome, and I was able to modify my schedule,” she says. While Overholt found the new reality to be exhausting at first, once her “family found its groove,” she actually enjoyed it. “We made it fun as well as educational,” she says. But, make no mistake: She is hopeful her kids will be back in the classroom in the fall. For those moms who are also teachers, did they have it any easier? photo by erin costa

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STEPHANIE BYRD would reply that it was just as crazy. As a public school pre-K teacher at Rachel Freeman School of Engineering, Byrd says the transition meant moving into high gear. “My profession demanded me to utilize remote learning even for pre-K,” she says. “We got word that we were not returning to school in mid-March, and I immediately tried to figure out the best way to get some sort of quality content to my students and families.” Byrd missed being in the classroom. “It was hard as an educator,” she says. “I knew I wasn’t reaching every child with remote learning, and that’s different than when you are in the classroom and interacting daily with them.” Byrd had the added stress of helping her students and their families, plus her own. For her two sons, ages five and three, she chose a different route than online education. “I didn’t utilize remote learning for our sons,” she says. “We did hands-on learning activities at home and did lots of outside adventure time with them.” Now that this unusual school year is over, what about summer and COVID? With places gradually reopening and restrictions loosening, does it offer any relief that families could go back to a “normal” summer – camps, swim team, day care? Asked that question in June, Sheehan remained hesitant. “We would have done UNCW swim camp and then swim team, plus a bunch of camps,” she said at the time. “I do not plan to send them to any.” She wondered if she might regret that decision after a month of having her children home all the time but decided she couldn’t risk their exposure with a baby on the way. Overholt’s plans for the summer include The Little Gym and YMCA camps. “Most are morning-only camps, and I’ll be home to pick (the kids) up in the afternoon in an effort to limit exposure,” she says. For the rest of the day, she is continuing a bit of the routine from distance learning with activities. Like many parents, Byrd is sorry to miss out on some major family events this summer, such as a wedding and visiting older relatives. But, she plans to break up the summer for her kids with a trip to the Outer Banks. W photo by erin costa

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keep it local WILMA’S

SPONSORS’ CONTENT

DELICATE ACCESSORIES

Find delicate accessories reminiscient of the beautful coast we call home at Camillions Boutique! Shop online at CamillionsNC. com or pickup curbside at the downtown location at 112 Market Street in the heart of downtown Wilmington.

DITCH THE TOXINS

This bottle of goodness is how SQUEAK began. Instead of synthetic fragrances and nifty colors, they chose hard working, organic essential oils with antimicrobial, antifungal and antibacterial properties like clove, lemon, cinnamon + rosemary to make All PERP OG safe and effective. Visit their website at GetSqueakyWithUs.com and order online. Free shipping on all orders $75 or more.

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Antiques, vintage items, and indoor/outdoor home décor are just a few things you can find at Port City Peddler. Their multi-vendor shop offers thousands of eclectic finds for every shopper including locally made items. Visit them at 6213 Market Street. Come inside, pickup curbside or order online at portcitypeddler.com

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Give your space an updated look with a new rug or carpet from Sutton’s Rugs & Carpets. Browse their top of the line brands for a customized look for every room. Shop now with some of the lowest prices of the season! Visit their website at suttonrugs. com or stop by their showroom at 3520 S. College Road in Wilmington, NC.


PETRIFIED WOOD

According to spiritual experts in gems and stones - petrified wood helps with patience on your spiritual transformation, helps to access past-life information, and see into the Akashic records and to contact your ancestors. Mystic Elements is here to help you find what suites your spiritual needs. Visit them at 4403 Park Ave. in Wilmington and be sure to wear a mask to keep everyone safe or visit their website at mysticelements.com.

SUMMER DRESSES THAT IMPRESS

Find cute & comfortable dresses that amplify your beauty at Desert Rose Boutique. Shop their wide selection of clothes, hats, jewelry and other unique accessories. Visit their storefront now open M-F from 11am-4pm at 208 N Front Street, Wilmington, NC 28401 or shop online at bloomindesertrose.com

UNICORN MAGIC

Watch out for cuteness overload when you shop Lyssa Cakes’ wide selection of cupcakes, cake pops, cookies and one-of-a-kind specialty cakes. Call 910.239.9341, email lyssacakes910@gmail.com or visit the website at LyssaCakes.com

WANTING A NATURAL IMMUNITY BOOST?

You can visit Elderberry Tribe at 102 Old Eastwood Rd. #A5 in Wilmington - they are offering curbside assistance. Sample their elderberry wellness products at local markets including Poplar Grove on Wednesdays and twice a month on Fridays at Riverlights. Locally you can also find their elderberry syrup at Finders Keepers, Eagle Island, Loveys Organic Market, Both Port City Produce locations, Magnolia Social Cafe and more.

SPONSORS’ CONTENT

VIBRANT ART Now open Fridays & Saturdays 11am-

6pm! Each artist offers something different at theArtWorks™ gallery. Take a virtual stroll through theArtWorks™️ Artist’ Collection. Touch each highlighted name and travel to their professional information to view. Featured above is artist Janet B. Sessoms. Call us at 910.352.1822, or email inquires to TheArtWorksWilmington@gmail.com or visit theartworks.co

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lowercase for a

HIGHER cause Lily Nicole organizes for change in Wilmington

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by Christine Hennessey photos by Terah Wilson


W

hen LILY NICOLE, a local artist, educator, and activist, heard about a protest being planned at Wilmington City Hall for the evening of Sunday, May 31, she was both supportive and concerned.

The protest was in honor of George Floyd, a black man killed by a police officer in Minneapolis just days earlier. Tensions throughout the country had been running high since Floyd’s death, with many protests ending in confrontations with police and destruction of property. WILMAmag.com

Nicole didn’t want the same to happen in Wilmington. “I knew a bunch of youth were attending, but there was no clear organization,” she says. “I was also outraged about George Floyd, but initially I went down not to protest, but to make sure s--didn’t hit the fan.” As the evening wore on, protesters spilled off the sidewalk and into the street, blocking traffic. Police officers and sheriff ’s deputies arrived in riot gear. Chaos seemed imminent, and that’s when Nicole decided to step in. She approached Interim Police Chief Donny Williams and asked him to work with the protesters. He agreed and gave them five minutes to clear the streets. “The protesters started leaving,” Nicole says. “I’m proud of that. They were upset, but they were getting out of the street and onto the corners.” But, despite Williams’s promise, the protesters did not get their full five minutes, she says. Accounts vary about what happened next, but after about two-anda-half minutes, law enforcement began to fire tear gas into the crowd. The next day, Nicole spoke to Williams by phone to dis-

cuss the events of the previous night. “He talked about his side; we talked about our side,” she says. “He commended our attempts for cooperation, and that’s when we started bringing up our questions.” While they came to no conclusion about what happened that night, Nicole realized there was a lack of communication between the police, the sheriff, and the community. Since that night, the daily protests in front of City Hall and marches through downtown Wilmington have continued. They’ve also evolved, becoming more organized and focused. “We believe a protest without a purpose is pointless,” Nicole says. “So, we have evolved into community education and outreach.” The early part of each day features different speakers who share key issues and register voters, while the evening hours are reserved for protesting, marching, and demonstrating. Nicole believes that to create meaningful change, people have to first understand what their community needs. “The morning portion of the day is for JULY 2020

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that,” she says. So, what does Wilmington need? Nicole and fellow organizers have formed a new activist and protest group called the lowercase leaders to help answer that question. “(The lowercase leaders) didn’t ask for this, and we don’t want to be the face of things,” Nicole says. “It’s not about me or about us. It’s literally a community coming together. We’re a hodgepodge of people who were in the right place at the right time with the same mission.” The group recently released a list of seven demands for the Wilmington Police Department, with a focus on community education and outreach. The demands include things such as reallocating some of the department’s annual budget to restorative justice and community-led interventions, creating a citizens review board, requiring mental health support and cultural competency training for all officers, mandatory use of body cameras for officers when they’re engaging with the public, and installing Williams as the city’s next police chief.

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“We’re not out to villainize the police,” Nicole says. “We don’t think the police in Wilmington should be defunded. We think the officers should get a different deal. “They should have mandatory therapy sessions, and they should be put on desk duty until they complete the sessions. You can’t see the worst of the world and not talk about it. Police need to be set up so they can succeed.” In addition, the group wants to see education specific to Wilmington’s history added to police training, as well as more community policing in general. “Walk around, meet the people in your district, come to our block parties, get to know people so you’re not just an officer, you’re a part of the community,” Nicole says. “A lot of officers relocate here or didn’t grow up here, and they should know about the community

they’re policing.” The lowercase leaders plan to register as a 501(c)(3) and gain nonprofit status, which would help them have a lasting impact beyond the downtown protests, and they’ve already seen a groundswell of enthusiasm for their plans. “This is something the community believes is needed,” Nicole says, “and we’re so thankful for that support.” W

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BOSS UP LEADERSHIP LEADERSHIP

ACCELERATOR

ACCELERATOR

Find your personal board of directors – people that will root for you but also hold you accountable. Those that will push you, those that are going to challenge you to pull back and find that space.”

VIRTUAL WORKSHOPS FOR REAL

SHERI SHAW, Assistant Dean for Student Success, UNCW

LEADERS

JULY 2020

YEARS

SHI

VE

5

CH AT W

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LEA

KAREN BAREFOOT Women’s Basketball Coach, UNCW

TI

One time I won a championship down 4 points, 4 seconds. You’re never out of the game, so always think that you’re in the game. Always fight through ’til the end.”

WILM A’

CHANGING THE SCORE

While we missed seeing you in person this year, our annual LEADERSHIP ACCELERATOR conference didn’t miss a beat – even online. Throughout June, WILMA’s WOMEN TO WATCH LEADERSHIP INITIATIVE hosted a mix of taped and live talks with FEMALE LEADERS from the community. From MOTIVATING TEAMS to business ADVICE FOR SMALL BUSINESS during the pandemic to a frank DISCUSSION ABOUT RACE, our VIRTUAL WORKSHOPS FOR REAL LEADERS packed a lot in during the month. If you missed any of the free sessions, you can still WATCH THEM HERE: WILMALEADERSHIP.com. MEN TO WO S Thanks for tuning in and to all of our speakers this year. P I N ITI

A


MENTORING CONNECTIONS

Regardless of where you are in your career or in life, you will always get something out of the mentor relationship. So, if you’ve got the opportunity, you should jump on it.”

OWNING IT

DONNA ESTEVES North America Regional Supply Chain Manager, Corning Optical Communications

SPECIFIC ADVICE FOR SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS

As leaders we all have it, days where you may doubt yourself for a choice that you made, be it for yourself or your employees, but what gets me out of bed and keeps me going is gumption, grit, and grace.” TAMMY BENSON General Manager, Advanced Marketing Solutions

WILMAmag.com

A BOUT RACE

CONVERSATION

I hear businesses putting out statements left and right and not just businesses some organizations. But, there’s an old cliché that I’ve lived my life by: ‘You must walk the talk.’ If you’re talking it and you’re not walking it, then that statement is not worth anything.”

VELVA JENKINS CEO, YWCA Lower Cape Fear

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DIGNITY MEMORIAL

M

YOU’VE LOST A LOVED ONE ─ WHAT NOW?

any times when loved ones pass away, caretakers are left wondering what to do next. While the grief of losing a friend or family member is tremendous on its own, navigating through the process that will follow is an additional burden that most of us haven’t often faced. Here’s what you need to know if you find yourself in this situation. If your loved one is not being cared for in a professional setting, such as a hospital or hospice care, the first step is to notify authorities. While the staff in a professional setting would typically handle this, if you find yourself in the situation where a loved one passes away at home, or in the absence of professional care, calling 911 should be your first step. This will summon the proper authorities to your

location for help, which will include legally pronouncing death, if appropriate. The documentation that results is necessary to facilitate managing the funeral plans and executing the estate. After the authorities are notified, contact a funeral home to take your loved one into their care. A funeral director will help guide you through the process of planning your loved one’s funeral. Your loved one’s funeral ceremony will honor and celebrate their life and the wonderful memories they left behind. Once the funeral home has been contacted, it’s time to notify friends and family of the recent occurrence. It is suggested to alert the decedent’s closest friends and family first, selecting one, or a few, of them to help share

the news. Close friends and family often look for ways to help during this process, so assigning them to make extended notifications is one way to relieve some of the burden from the main caretaker. Now that friends and family members have been made aware, your attention can shift to making arrangements for care that may be needed for pets, children, or elderly parents. This is a task for a close friend or family member that you trust and that can make the time to commit to this task. Another consideration that can be made at this point is to notify the loved one’s employer, if needed, and seek information about remaining pay, life insurance, and other benefits. Alongside notifying any

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employer, it’s crucial to locate a will. Your loved one’s will could provide helpful details about any funeral pre-planning they may have already made. These pre-made plans serve as incredible help when searching for next steps; however, not everyone takes the time to pre-plan their funeral, leaving the next-of-kin to decide on arrangements. Michael Higgins is Sales Manager for Dignity Memorial®, which cares for more than 300,000 families each year through its network of more than 2,000 providers throughout North America. Learn more at www.dignitymemorial. com or call Greenlawn Memorial Park, Oleander Memorial Gardens and Coble Funeral and Cremation Services at Greenlawn Memorial Park, (910) 799-1686.


MARKRAFT CABINETS

P

TIPS FOR REMODELING YOUR BATHROOM

erforming for a bathroom remodel in your home is one of the best ways to add value to your investment – and let’s face it, who doesn’t want to step into a fresh, updated bathroom each day? Television, online resources, and apps have made design ideas readily available for homeowners to browse, sparking the creativity of interior design enthusiasts everywhere. Starting the development of your bathroom remodel is simple and here are a few tips to help. Make the Space Function for Your Needs Think about your needs and how you envision using the space. How many people will be using the bathroom? Will you need separate or additional storage for linens or beauty supplies, or maybe eliminating unused storage space works best for you? Will the space be heavily used or is it a second bathroom space which only guests use? Asking these questions help to start

the design process. If ample counter space, double sinks, or adding special lighting are a priority, make note of these ideas and share them with your designer. Reflect Your Style with Cabinetry From sleek and modern to traditional to trendy, bathroom cabinetry can pull your entire remodel design together. Not only are new bathroom cabinets visually appealing, they can be customized to maximize space and provide ample storage. Different colored and textured cabinetry can be incorporated into your bathroom design creating a personalized look that matches your style. Trendy farmhouse styles incorporate a “barn door” look onto cabinet faces as well as beadboard textures. Bathroom vanities can be customized to look like pieces of vintage furniture with granite, quartz, or marble countertops enclosing an undermount sink. No matter your style, Markraft’s extensive selection will meet

the needs of any design plan. Set the Tone with Color Color is powerful and can create the mood in a room, whether uplifting or calming. Will your new space help you wake-up and spring into action in the mornings or would it better serve you as a quiet place to relax at the end of a long day? Choose a color that will match the mood best suited for your needs. Neutral colors like grey, beige, and shades of light blue and white often set a peaceful atmosphere while bold colors like yellow, orange, and lime green can invigorate our moods. While traditional wood grain cabinetry is always an option, Markraft offers any color cabinetry that best compliments your existing selections – the possibilities are endless making your space just as unique as you are. Establish Ambiance with Lighting The bathroom is one place where ample lighting is a must. Wall mounted lighting next to

and above mirrors helps to illuminate and remove shadows from the reflection. While some bathroom lighting needs are essential for helping us to prepare for our day ahead, building in dimming options or adding a statement light can be soothing for the evening winddown. No need to worry about rearranging lighting for your remodel with Markraft. They can refer you to a specialized contractor who fits the needs of your project and will work with them to make the design plan clear. President and General Manager Cee Edwards and his team of talented designers invites you to visit Markraft’s Design Studio, 2705 Castle Creek Lane, just off Castle Hayne Road. Markraft’s professional kitchen and bath designers consult by appointment but drop-in visitors are always welcome to browse the showroom, open 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday – Friday.

910.793.0202 | MARKAFT.COM

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PATRIOT ROOFING DRONE INSPECTIONS

SIMPLIFY ROOF MAINTENANCE

D

Stephanie Bolton is the owner of Patriot Roofing Company, a female-owned and locally-operated roofing company serving the Cape Fear area. With over 20 years of experience serving homeowners, Patriot Roofing Company specializes in residential roofing, siding, gutters, and windows. Visit them online at, PatriotRoofer.com or call 910-218-0600.

rone technology has been increasingly popular and carries over into many different industries – including roof maintenance and repair. This technology allows homeowners and property managers to view areas of their roof that they might not otherwise get to see. The team at Patriot Roofing is equipped with this technology and provides pictures and videos to their clients after each drone roof inspection. Clients can view any damage and have a better understanding of what repairs need to be made. Drones can be especially helpful when potential insurance claims are on the line. The team at Patriot Roofing can easily record pictures and video of any damage and send it directly to the insurance agent to start the repair or replacement process. When dealing with a damaged roof, this small convenience can make all the difference. Before and after pictures of a new roof project are also one of the perks of this technology. At Patriot Roofing, safety is a top priority. Using drone technology for roof inspections limits the amount of time roofing specialists must climb ladders and navigate steep roof pitches. Additionally, some roof areas that were previously inaccessible can now be seen efficiently and in detail, all while the inspectors are safe on the ground. Accuracy and efficiency are also priorities of Patriot Roofing that are supported by drone technology. Using drones to obtain accurate roof

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measurements allows for more precise material calculations, thereby ensuring your roofing specialist have what they need when they need it. This process minimizes waste or delays associated with reorders – ultimately saving costs that impact your bottom line. Patriot Roofing makes their drone roof inspections convenient and reliable. You don’t have to be home when it’s conducted and, since drones can operate in the rain, most weather conditions won’t cancel your appointment either. The drone operator works outside your home to accumulate pictures and videos of your roof in a matter of minutes, and that’s it – inspection complete! The pictures and videos are then analyzed by the Patriot Roofing team and the results shared with the homeowner, along with the footage. Drone roof inspection technology also allows you to be as involved as you want to be in the process of preparing for a roof repair, whether you’re away on a trip, evacuated after a storm, or managing a second property from another state. Patriot Roofing will make your roof inspection footage available by e-mail or video conference, and can coordinate a remote review of the results with one of their roofing experts. In just a few minutes you can have your roof inspected by the team at Patriot Roofing for free, allowing you to enter hurricane season with the peace of mind and protection that a well-maintained roof offers your family and property.


JULY

7/3 photo by Brian Lantz Photography

7/1 Editor’s note: Because of the coronavirus and changing restrictions in place from the state, the events below are current as of press time but might be postponed or canceled by July 1. It’s best to check event websites first before heading out.

1

WEDNESDAY

POPLAR GROVE FARMERS’ MARKET Poplar Grove Throughout July Poplar Grove Plantation, 10200 U.S. Highway 17 North, hosts its

weekly FARMERS MARKET 8 a.m.-1 p.m., with butchers, bakers, and artisan makers. As of press time, the market was still a walk-through farmers market. Taking place every Wednesday, the market lasts through September 30. Info: poplargrove.org/farmers-market

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7/7

CINEMATIQUE SOFA SERIES Thalian Hall

proved to start July 1. Opening night includes

TIQUE SOFA SERIES, based on the in-person,

Info: wilmingtonsharks.com

Thalian Hall and WHQR hold the CINEMA-

long-running Cinematique movies series at

Thalian. Viewers can click on the “Rent Now” button on Thalian’s site for streaming the

independent, foreign, and documentary films typically curated as part of the Cinematique

3

experience. Info: thalianhall.org

FRIDAY

giveaways and firework display after the game. This year’s season runs through August 15.

4 SATURDAY

BEACH YOGA Crystal Pier Through September

Every Saturday and Sunday, 7:30-8:30 a.m., Wilmington Yoga Center hosts BEACH

WILMINGTON SHARKS Buck Hardee Field

Oceanic restaurant in Wrightsville Beach. The

holds opening day for the

with a view of the ocean waves. Because

at Legion Stadium. The Coastal

nine people. Preregistration is required by

YOGA on Crystal Pier at

The WILMINGTON SHARKS

class, open to all levels, provides vinyasas

baseball team’s 2020 season

of social distancing, classes are limited to

Plain League, of which the Wilmington Sharks collegiate summer team is a part of, was ap-

emailing info@wilmingtonyogacenter.com. Info: wilmingtonyogacenter.com

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4

BATTLE FOR INDEPENDENCE ROAD RACE The Pointe at Barclay

Go Time has approval from the city of Wilmington to hold THE BATTLE FOR INDEPENDENCE ROAD SATURDAY RACE, an in-person race that also has virtual options for those who would rather run it on their own. The timed race includes 1-mile and 5K courses at The Pointe at Barclay, 1450 Barclay Pointe Boulevard. To help with distancing, there will be two start lines, and runners will start in staggered waves of twenty people at a time. Other precautions will be in place. Those details are on the event registration page, which also has info about how to run the virtual race. Info: its-gotime.com/battle-for-independence

5

TRUMP BOAT PARADE Wrightsville Beach

The NEW HANOVER COUNTY GOP hosts a boat parade to show support for President

Trump starting at 10 a.m. The boat parade will run through the inland waterway at Wrightsville Beach. Those without boats can still participate from shore. Info: newhanovergop.org SUNDAY

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6 MONDAY

SUMMER UKULELE LESSONS North Carolina Ukulele Academy

Ukulele lessons kick up for the summer for all ages at the NORTH CAROLINA UKULELE ACADEMY, 203 Racine Drive. There are kids lessons, starting

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at age seven up to Ukulele 101 for teens. There also are several adult-level lessons, including a new class on “Summer Road Trip Songs” and “Fun Jazz Classics.” Info: alohau.com

7

RUN CLUB Wilmington Brewing Company

Wilmington Brewing Company hosts a weekly TUESDAY running get-together that starts at the brewery, 824 South Kerr Avenue, at 6:30 p.m. for RUN CLUB. Dogs and strollers are welcome, and cold beer awaits at the end. Info: wilmingtonbrewingcompany. com

8

WALK TO RUN Hugh MacRae Park

Without Limits kicks off its twelve-week WALK TO RUN PROGRAM to introduce WEDNESDAY people to the sport of running, along with coaching to incorporate running into participants’ fitness goals. The first practice starts at 5:45 p.m. at Hugh MacRae Park and is

free. Those who sign up meet weekly on Wednesdays, with a to-be-determined 5K in September. Info: iamwithoutlimits.com

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RESTORE GRAND OPENING Habitat Restore Monkey Junction

8:30-11:30 a.m. Explore the waterways on the tour, let by Mahanaim Adventures. For more info and registration details, go to townofleland.com/parks-recreation.

CAPE FEAR HABITAT RESTORE holds a grand opening event for its newest location, this one in Monkey Junction at 6331 Carolina Beach Road. The stores, which are donation centers from the local nonprofit, are open to the public to find home goods, furniture, building supplies, and more. Items are resold to help support the Cape Fear Habitat for Humanity’s mission of affordable homes in the community. Info: facebook.com/ CapeFearReStore SATURDAY

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KAYAK ADVENTURES Shark Tooth Island

The town of Leland holds its kayak trip SUNDAY to SHARK TOOTH ISLAND for paddlers of all experience levels

7/4 Submit your event to the WILMA online calendar at WILMAmag.com

5041 New Centre Drive, Suite 115 • Wilmington, NC 28403 910-218-0600 • INFO@PATRIOTROOFER.COM • PATRIOTROOFER.COM

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I AIR photo c/o SARAH DOSS

EN PLEIN NO BOUNDARIES ART FUNDRAISER GOES OUTDOORS by MEGHAN CORBETT

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n May, No Boundaries International Art Colony held a drive-by art show to lend support to artists amid the coronavirus restrictions.

It was held in the yard of ELEANOR TOPPING and JONATHAN SUMMIT (a former board member and NBIAC alum), in the 100 block of North 15th Street. “We had originally planned a fundraiser for May at Jules’ (Salty) Grub & Island Pub on Bald Head Island where we host our annual two-week international art colony, but COVID-19 complications prevented that,” says organizer SARAH DOSS. “The in-town, open-air venue with a drive-by option made it much safer for folks. We had a lot of masked people on foot or on bicycles as well, and live – socially distanced – music from Nerve Truck.”

JULY 2020

The event was such a success that another is scheduled for July 11 from 4 to 6 p.m., with a rain date of July 12, at the same location. The show will donate 20 percent of the proceeds to the Brigade Boys & Girls Club. “We chose the Brigade Boys & Girls Club this time around because the George Floyd and Black Lives Matter rallies have affected us so deeply,” Doss says. “Our art colony is such a beautiful thing because of its diversity. NBIAC brings artists together from around the world to work alongside and learn from each other. After two weeks together, artists leave with a greater understanding, appreciation, and love for their fellow global citizens and (have) a body of work to show for it. The differences are what make the experience so beautiful. We feel we must also support diverse and equitable programs in our own community, and the Brigade Boys & Girls Club is a wonderful organization.” Photographer Harry Taylor will, once again, offer 4-by-5-inch tintype portraits for $50 each, in addition to art from many different artists, to keep things fresh. There will also be work from the NBIAC permanent collection on display. “Artists are really struggling right now,” Doss says. “They have not been able to exhibit or sell work through their normal outlets with so many galleries, restaurants, and bars affected. Art is so important; it helps us through challenging times when normal routines are so disrupted.” If there is continued interest in the NBIAC outdoor show, there will be another scheduled for September. “It would be great to continue supporting our artists, future art colonies, and local charities,” Doss says. “If we’re able to host our annual international art colony in November (still up in the air because of COVID-19), we’ll have another exhibit featuring the new work from that two-week period. At this point, we’re hoping – and planning – for the best but realize we’re all at the mercy of a global pandemic. “We are always accepting donations for our art colony, and we encourage folks who cannot attend but want to support us to email us at noboundariesartcolony@gmail.com,” she continues. “We also encourage people to donate directly to the charities we are supporting, such as Good Shepherd Center, Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard, and the Brigade Boys & Girls Club. We choose our beneficiaries by examining the needs of our community.” W Info: facebook.com/NBIAC


5

TAKE

by LORI WILSON photo by TERAH WILSON

It’s no coincidence that ELIZABETH FELTS, a service learning class instructor and the 2020-21 New Hanover County Schools’ Educator of the Year, pursued her career as a teacher after an internship in the school system. When she was twenty-one, as a psychology student in Maryland, Felts hosted service learning projects for student groups. “That really motivated me to totally change career paths,” she says. Fast-forward a little over ten years, while teaching at New Hanover High School, she’s received the county school system’s highest honor for her field, along with Hendrick Toyota of Wilmington’s gift of a 2020 Toyota RAV4 for a year. Felts began at NHHS as an English teacher in 2011. In her fourth year, she launched the school’s Honors Service Learning class for juniors and seniors. In 2018, a similar course for underclassmen, called the BRIDGE program, followed. In both programs, students volunteer in the local community and subsequently explore careers, as part of their coursework. “The goal is to help them become lifelong learners and responsible citizens,” Felts says. WHAT’S YOUR BIGGEST INFLUENCE AS AN EDUCATOR? “My students are what motivate me more than anything else because they’re so resilient and inspiring. They deserve a great teacher, so that’s always what gets me up in the morning and drives me to be better.” DID YOU HAVE A FAVORITE TEACHER GROWING UP? “I was fortunate to have a few teachers who I was really grateful for throughout the years, but one that I still keep up with is Coach Crump. I did not get to have him until my second semester senior year. I was over academics, over school and reading and writing, but he infused a love of learning back into me, and I still try to channel his energy into my classroom.” IF NOT TEACHING, WHAT CAREER WOULD YOU PURSUE “IN ANOTHER LIFE”? “Aside from education, I’m supremely passionate about ending domestic violence. I spend a lot of my energy and time trying to be an advocate and supporter for survivors, so perhaps something that would be with that. But, I also just really love food, so maybe I would learn how to cook better and make lots of yummy food all the time.” IF ASKED TO GIVE TWO WORDS TO DESCRIBE YOU, WHAT WOULD YOUR STUDENTS CHOOSE? “The words that have honored me the most have been ‘innovative’ and ‘passionate.’ Through my entire teaching career, I’ve really tried to look at how we’re approaching education, who is learning and how.” DO YOU HAVE YOUNG STUDENTS OF YOUR OWN? “Yes, I have a five-year-old named James and a three-year-old named Emmy. And, I have been their at-home teacher since March 13 (because of COVID). That has been its own beautiful mess! They’ve motivated me as well.” W ELIZABETH FELTS’ full profile will appear in an upcoming WILMA Roundup email. To sign up for daily WILMA emails, go to WILMAmag.com. WILMAmag.com

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UNCUT,

UNKEMPT, UNCERTAIN by TIM BASS illustration by MARK WEBER Tim Bass is coordinator of UNCW’s bachelor of fine arts program in creative writing.

A

After two months, my hair had grown back to the old days, when I thought it was acceptable for a man my age – or any age – to walk around with what appeared to be an osprey nest sitting on his head. I’d had an epiphany a few years ago. It came in the form of two wise, no-nonsense stylists in the budget shop where I went from time to time to tame the twigs on top. They wanted to buzz me. “We promise,” they said, “that you won’t look like you’re in the Marines.” Well, that, plus my senior-discount card and what a drill sergeant might interpret as an all-season Firestone under my fatigues. So, they buzzed, and I walked out of there feeling less osprey and more human. Then, this spring, we got the pandemic lockdown. I intended to squeeze in one last haircut before everything closed, but I misread the deadline by a day. I had to part with regular buzzing and, like everyone else, head into the unknown. Soon, the birds returned. Weathered gray-brown sprigs mounded above my ears, growing outward, like wings. On top, one side bunched high and gave me a look of permanent bedhead. The front swooped up and over, as if about to fly away. The lockdown wore on. I could handle most of what they call “personal grooming” – shaving, clipping my fingernails and toenails, trimming my eyebrows, and handling a category I’ll just label as “other.” But, my hair grew worse by the week. I wondered how many times I could legitimately show up for online work meetings in a baseball cap. When I ventured out in my green face mask, my head

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looked like a broccoli floret. Then, while combing through the newspaper, I locked onto a column titled “Give Yourself a Haircut.” Sure, just as everybody else, I’d thought about it. I had a pair of clippers I bought for the dog, and after that experiment on him went way wrong, I’d stashed them on a shelf in the garage. Once I brushed away all the Labrador hair, they were basically brand new. Now, I had a bigwig in the newspaper waving me on, offering a shortcut, saying I didn’t have to stay stranded. Unfortunately, his method involved sitting in a stopped-up bathtub with a mirror and scissors (and no clippers). He suggested pulling up patches of hair between the fingers and snipping bits at a time, alternating hands. As for the back, he wrote, “You must do that by feel.” No way. I’d have to be ambidextrous and work on sheer nerve. Even then, I’d wind up looking ridiculous, especially with stitches across the back of my head. I decided it’s best to leave some personal work to the trained professionals. Like appendix removal. And root canals. And haircuts. On my weekly trips for groceries, I passed the darkened salon where I’d gone for regular maintenance. I missed the stylists with their razor scissors and sharp tongues. I hoped they were healthy and secure. I wondered when I’d finally see them, and what they would say after all this time and all this hair. Probably this: “You look terrible. Is that an osprey nest? We can do something about that. Have a seat.”


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The only restaurant in Wrightsville Beach situated on the Atlantic Ocean, and connected to the historical Crystal Pier. Panoramic beach views from all angles inside the restaurant, pier dining, and fresh, coastal-inspired signature dishes.

WILMINGTON 5400 OLEANDER DR. Your local gastropub, serving up the best craft beers to compliment our culinary-inspired American fare, A laid back, relaxed environment, with award-winning brunch, a selection of barrelaged bourbons, craft cocktails, and wines on tap.

WILMINGTON 317-C COLLEGE RD. Food, Sports, and Fun for the whole family: fresh housemade dishes, award-winning wings, daily food and drink specials, Wednesday Kid’s Night, 38 drafts on tap, outside patio, and catch the games on 50 TV’s. ALE YEAH!

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Count On Me NC is a public health initiative that empowers guests and businesses to help keep everyone safe from COVID-19. We: Wear Masks, Staff PreShift Temperature & Health Checks, Social Distancing Measures, Single Use Menus, Frequent Cleaning & Sanitizing of High-Touch Surfaces.