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Features

  • August’s sky is full of wonder; however, not the wonder of seeing Mars the size of the full moon.

    Sorry to say that to those prepared to go outside at the end of month hoping to enjoy this celestial wonder.

    Can anyone be safe from the evil, “bad science monster,” restored to life, like a B movie zombie, which invades in-boxes of innocent e-mailers all over the world? Please save everyone and hit delete.

  • ‘T’ Heirs Farm Market off Old Ocean Highway just outside Bolivia has fresh produce available daily. The farm stand's owner, Doris Thornton-Green, also sells her produce at local farmers markets in Shallotte and Southport.

  • Calabash is known as the Seafood Capital of the World, but behind the restaurants, docked in the waterway, are the boats that make Calabash what it is.

    Calabash is a seafood town, but what would it be without its local shrimpers?

    “The docks are open to everyone here,” Mayor Anthony Clemmons said. “The docks have been part of the mystique of Calabash. You come to Calabash and eat and the docks call you down there.”

  • After several years in the making, “Margaret, Pirate Queen” is ready to set sail.

    Brunswick County resident Marsha Tennant, who along with her students wrote the illustrated book based on the pirate adventures of her late, great dog, Margaret, is thrilled the book once targeted for publication by Scholastic has finally been released by a new publisher.

  • In Brunswick County, it’s a no-brainer: Fresh fish is better, and locally caught is best.

    That’s the basis of Brunswick Catch, a group of commercial fishermen, seafood dealers and restaurant owners spawned two years ago to promote locally harvested seafood.

  • BOLIVIA—The enthusiasm level in the room gets higher every time another young cast member in “Annie” enters the rehearsal space at Brunswick Community College.

    The young girls portraying the orphans were laughing, joking and horsing around before a recent rehearsal, but once the director told them to start, they became a professional, polished theater cast.

  • Looking for a cool place to enjoy a hot movie this summer?

    Coastal Stadium 10 at 5200 Bridgers Road in Shallotte has just the tickets.

    The air-conditioned movie theater offers daily show times of the latest 2D and 3D movies.

    The Kids Summer Series continues for the next three weeks, with $1 movies for ages 1 to 100 at 10 a.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. “Night at the Museum 2” is the featured flick this Thursday.

  • Everybody thinks they want to be a vet—until they think about.

    I didn’t so much think about becoming a vet, I just was. Some say it’s a “passion” while others call it “pathology.” Either way, working and living with animals is all I’ve known since I was “knee-high to a grasshopper” as we used to say in South Georgia.

    Sure, it’s hard to become a vet and even harder to be one, but it’s the only thing I’ve ever seen myself doing.

  • “A canopy of moss-draped trees leading to the Intracoastal Waterway” is one way to define Gause Landing.

    Or how about “George Washington slept here”? Or “Hurricane Hazel hit here”?

    Jackie Stanley Varnam is among locals who grew up in the area just west of the waterway and south of Ocean Isle Beach, on Hale Beach Road running parallel to Gause Landing Road.

  •   CALABASH—Diners lining up in the Seafood Capital during a busy summer suppertime can see the good-natured debate and choices live on when it comes to eating Calabash-style.

    “This is it!” proclaims a sign and arrow pointing out Beck’s Restaurant near the corner of Beach Drive and River Road.

  • Fast-talking traveling salesman Harold Hill has hit River City, Iowa—and Wilmington—looking to con the townspeople into buying instruments and uniforms for a boys’ band.

    Opera House Theatre Company is presenting its third and final week of “The Music Man” this Friday, Saturday and Sunday, July 23-25, on the main stage at Thalian Hall in Wilmington.

    Based on Meredith Willson’s classic production, this local rendition plays at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday with a 3 p.m. matinee Sunday.

  •  Look in the sky. Is it a plane, a UFO or leftover fireworks from earlier this month? 

    If the time is just after sunset and you are looking west, it is the goddess of beauty, the god of war, and the god of agriculture.

    Huh? They are normally enemies, a strange trio to be gathering in a small group. The group is three planets, which are the namesakes of these gods and goddess. From brightest to dimmest the list reads: Venus, Saturn and Mars. To view, look west and up at 9 o’clock.

  • After three years of construction, St. Brendan Catholic Church on Ocean Highway in Shallotte will officially move into its new sanctuary starting with Sunday Mass at 8 a.m., 9:30 a.m. and 11:15 a.m.

    That afternoon, at 2 p.m., the congregation and staff will dedicate the new 9,000 square-foot building, with seating for 1,100 people, with a special ceremony including a speech from Bishop Michael Burbidge of the Diocese of Raleigh.

  • Grady Eyler, 3, of Haymarket, Va., teed off at River Country Miniature Golf on Ocean Isle Beach on a recent summer day. It was the family’s first stay on the beach, but Grady’s mother said it wouldn’t be the last.

  • Summer fun awaits at Shallotte’s own celestial venue for convivial pursuits.

    Planet Fun, at 349 Whiteville Road, is designed for fun-seekers of all ages.

    Highlights in the 50,000-square-foot entertainment center, beside Lowe’s Home Improvement, include the 32-lane constellation bowling alley, four lanes of mini bowling, a two-story laser tag arena, nine-hole black-light miniature golf, a soft indoor playground, arcade, party rooms, concession stand, pro shop and a restaurant, the Starz Grille.

  • Two Shallotte churches have “topped” off their renovations with brand new steeples in recent days. Members have been working to expand and rebuild to serve their growing populations.

    At Unity Worship Center, a small church with a membership of about 50 on Holden Beach Road, congregant Bobby Batson made a steeple just for the church. On Monday, he and other supporters placed it atop the 100-year-old building as church members and the Rev. Tom Stephenson looked on and cheered.

  • Where is the center of the Milky Way? If you answered right in the middle that would be correct and funny, however, I was thinking about the location of the center as judged by the stars.
    What direction in the sky should you look during a humid summer night to be looking toward the center?
    To find it, all you have to do is find an archer and a scorpion, and look in between them, and you are staring at the center of the Milky Way. That sounds easy enough to accomplish.

  • Winding River resident Joe Koletar’s third book targeted to businesses, “Rethinking Risk: How Companies Sabotage Themselves and What They Must Do Differently,” will be available for purchase this week.

    During his career as a fraud investigator, Koletar wrote extensively about fraud in various professional journals, leading to another career for the now semi-retired expert.

    “I started writing an article for a professional journal. I got carried away,” he recalled.

  • Clayton Bartizal, business development manager at resortandlodges.com, said recently various teams of writers and editors write “top 10” articles once or twice each month based on social media reviews, price ranges, the size of the units and how resorts meet customers’ needs.

    “We get a lot of [website] traffic from that,” Bartizal said. “It’s a lot of great free traffic our partners get.”

    While many of the sites chosen are advertising partners with resortandlodges, many are not, he said.

     

  • From chasing bank robbers to poring over Swiss bank records to find fraud, Joe Koletar’s career has spanned more than 40 years, numerous countries and countless adventures.

    After graduating college, he served as an intelligence officer in the U.S. Army Special Security Group. From there, he was recruited into the Federal Bureau of Investigation, where he got his start investigating bank robberies.