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Today's Features

  • Heavy winds whipped across southeastern North Carolina recently, waking homeowners and leaving downed trees and limbs behind.

    Strong weather is common in southeastern North Carolina, and so is cleaning up after it. But there’s a way to do it safely and wisely.

    Prioritize your chores by starting to work on trees that endanger buildings and fences first.

    Don’t attempt to handle trees that overhang or touch power lines. Call local utility company professionals for assistance in removing these trees.

  • For many years, I have announced I am not a Christmas person. I say to all who care to hear this is not my holiday. My words have caused some to look askance at me. It is likely I am raining on their “happiness parade,” bringing a negative note to their Noels.

  • Lydia F. Hewett’s children and grandchildren fondly recall spending Christmas at her house in the Boone’s Neck community, stringing popcorn and eating home-cooked meals to celebrate the holiday season and Hewett’s birthday each Dec. 15.

    Her most recent celebration was the ultimate milestone birthday. Hewett turned 100 years old last week, and several of her children and other family members visited her at Autumn Care of Shallotte to honor her years of love, caring and wisdom.

  • Shallotte Presbyterian Church will host a "noontime mini concert" Tuesday, Dec. 22, at the church.

    A "bring your own lunch" will follow in the fellowship hall. Beverage and dessert will be provided.

    The public is invited to attend.

    For more information, call 754-6929.

  • Katie Stewart has childhood memories of visiting Southport during the holidays.

    “We would all pile in the car and drive around and look at the beautiful Christmas lights,” she said. “Gramps would turn on the Christmas carols, and we would all sing off-key.”

    Two-and-a-half years ago, Stewart decided she wanted to help families create memories of their own. She decided to use her business, Old South Tour and Carriage Company to do it.

  • SUNSET BEACH—Seaside United Methodist Church Choir presented its annual Christmas cantata in two full-house performances on Dec. 13.

    The cantata, performed by 95 choir members, was “One Small Child” by Tom Fettke, choir director Kathryn Parker said.

    A 12-piece orchestra, some from the Wilmington Symphony, provided accompaniment for the 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. performances at the church at 1300 Seaside Road in Sunset Beach.

    The ensemble also included a harpist from Southern Pines, Parker said.

  • After being rained out Friday and Saturday, Beach Assembly of God presented Bethlehem Live for the first time on Sunday,     Dec. 6.

    About 500 people attended Sunday night despite the cold. The church had more than 2,500 people make reservations to attend one of six      performances.

    Performances are set for Friday, Dec. 11, Saturday, Dec. 12 and Sunday,     Dec. 13.

    To make reservations, or for more information, call the church at 579-9701.

  • Plant nerds and even casual gardeners always want to be the first on the block to have the latest, greatest plants. As your resident plant nerd, I feel compelled to offer my list of some must-have plants for the coming growing season.

  • All it takes is a little light, warmth and water to coax an amaryllis bud out of the big bulb’s belly. No ultimatums required. Pop up the softball-size bulbs now so the immense, trumpet-shaped flowers will grace your holiday décor. The bud rides upward 1-2 feet on a hollow but thick-skinned stalk before bursting into spectacular bloom.

  • We’re almost there. Christmas is just around the corner. Many of us are so focused on what is not yet here we miss the reality of the present moment and the wonder of all that has occurred in the past.

    Advent helps us to embrace the three stages of our faith journey: Christ has come. Christ will come again. Christ is here now.

    It is difficult to embrace those three “presences” simultaneously, unless we remember our own human lives are filled with that trinity.