• You decide: Why are there new sales taxes in North Carolina?

    By Dr. Mike Walden

    Guest Columnist

    North Carolinians having repairs made to their vehicles are now in for a little bit of a shock. With a few exceptions, they will now have to pay state sales tax on the labor cost of those repairs. So, too, will folks paying for repairs to their computers and for installing modular homes. These are some of the new sales taxes that began March 1.

  • More than March Madness leaves us breathless

    “March Madness isn’t just about basketball; it also can describe the pollen season,” began a news release I received last week from the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality, formerly known as the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

    I wouldn’t consider my reaction to pollen season as madness, but it’s certainly maddening.

    No sooner had I finally kicked croup than early last week I began coughing again like my lungs were full of sawdust.

  • Quick with a story and quick to laugh — our friend, Sarah Sue

    By Angie Sutton

    General Manager

    “Let me tell y’all a quick story.”

    Those were my favorite words to hear on Tuesday nights several years ago — even in the middle of paper production.

    Sarah Sue Ingram was interim editor at The Brunswick Beacon while I searched for a new editor.

    When I met her, I had no idea what an interesting person she was, or how much I would enjoy working with her.

  • My predecessor, friend and hero, Sarah Sue Ingram

    Forgive me this week, readers. I’m feeling a little lost and a lot heartbroken.

    I think it’s always that way when you lose a member of your family, and we at the Beacon have lost one of the dearest members of ours.

    Sarah Sue Ingram, who kept our newsroom running smoothly until I got here, died Monday morning of complications from lung cancer.

    If you learn nothing else about Sarah Sue from my column, you need to know if she could have beaten it, she would have. She promised to fight and she was absolutely a woman of her word.

  • Greetings from a new face, old soul

    An introductory column is an interesting task. In 500 words or so, I’m meant to introduce myself to the community.

    So I’ll start by saying I ramble, and while 500 words may sound daunting to the untrained eye, to me it’s a prison of sorts.

  • Keeping the consumers safe from scams

    By Jennifer West

    Guest Columnist

    Their confidence shaken by huge cases of scandal and fraud over the past decade, consumers are understandably shell-shocked and wary. It’s hard not to wonder who will be the target of the next massive scam.

  • You decide: Why are so many people so angry now?

    By Dr. Mike Walden

    Guest Columnist

    Political pundits following the presidential campaigns of the candidates have agreed on one conclusion — many people appear to be angry. Experts offer this as the reason voters are backing non-traditional candidates — or outsiders.

    If the analysts are correct, then the follow-up question is, why? Why are so many people angry?

    Of course there can be many reasons, such as fears over foreign threats, worries about personal safety, or concerns on specific costs like health care or education.

  • The utmost importance of ‘Spotlight’

    My friend, Fran Salone-Pelletier, has already written in the Beacon this year about “Spotlight,” which two weekends ago was dubbed Best Picture in this year’s Academy Awards, but now I want to offer my perspective.

  • We all must be better examples for county’s children

    By Ken Proctor

    Guest Columnist

    I have had the privilege to spend the past several months working with our Brunswick County Schools students, both inside and outside the school system, and with the school staff members. I have worked with children from the first grade through the 12th grade. I also have experience employing Brunswick County students for more than 25 years.

  • On Campus at Brunswick Community College: Linking our students with support services

    By Dr. Susanne Adams

    Guest Columnist

    Recently, I ran across a quotation by Phil Jackson, American professional basketball executive, former coach and former player serving as president of the New York Knicks in the National Basketball Association (NBA.)

    Jackson shared, “The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team.”