•  IF YOU GO

    What: Ocean Isle Beach Family Sand Sculpture Contest

    Where: on the beach behind Ocean Isle Beach Community Center at 44 E. First St.

    When: 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 5

    How much: Free to participate and free to watch

    It’s an end-of-season chance to get crafty using the finest building materials known to creative beach hands.

  •  One of the most common questions I hear from pet owners is what is the best way to train their dog or cat. They are often confused by questionable “dominance” or “pack leader” techniques popular on reality television. They’ve been bamboozled by apparent quick fixes and magical cures for often complex animal behaviors an onscreen personality miraculously manages to correct within a 30-minute show. I wish.

  •  By John Nelson

  •  By Linda Arnold


    Off and on I’ve had to engage in the art of tough love. Now I know how it got its name! I’m just wondering whether it’s tougher on the receiver — or the sender.

    Tough love has been defined as “an expression used when someone treats another person harshly or sternly with the intent to help them in the long run.”


    Prunes Theory of Life

  • On the cusp of summer-into-Indian-summer, the Sunset Beach Business and Merchants Association is launching a weekly waterfront market starting Thursday, Sept. 3, and continuing through Oct. 29 in Sunset Beach Town Park.

    At the weekly Thursday market that will be open 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., shoppers will be able to purchase produce straight from the farmer and drink coffee brewed from beans home-roasted locally and delivered fresh to market.

  • By Linda Arnold

    Life Columnist

    So, you’ve had a spat with your spouse.  Or, your boss came down on you.  Finally, your kids got on your very last nerve.

    The conversation may not have been pretty, and it’s over. Do you find yourself replaying it over and over in your mind, though? Thinking ‘bout other things you could have said. Wondering how they’re reacting. Wishing you could have been more forceful — or more tactful.

    Why do we do this to ourselves?  And, is there a way to stop?

  • By John Nelson

    Plant Columnist

    Let’s talk about the carrot family, the Apiaceae.

    This is a very large family, known mostly from temperate parts of the northern hemisphere, with many genera and many species, these known since antiquity, and valued for a variety of foods, spices, flavors, and medicines … and poisons.

  • The end of summer means an empty house for many families. While parents may enjoy a break from the children, it may be a different story for our dogs. Here are some simple tips to help you make the transition from summer to school easier for your pet.


    Transition time

  •  IF YOU GO

    What: Brunswick Big Band

    When: 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug 27

    Where: South Brunswick Islands Center

    How much: Free

    Citizen demand has spurred Brunswick Community College’s South Brunswick Islands Center to launch a cultural arts and lecture series, starting with a performance by Brunswick Big Band at 7 p.m. next Thursday, Aug. 27.

    Admission to the concert is free and open to the public. Additional highlights include hors d’oeuvres and dancing.

  • Band of Oz’s beginnings date back to 1967 in the eastern North Carolina town of Grifton, where a bunch of musical grammar and high school boys started jamming as The Avengers.

    The fledgling guitar-and-keyboard ensemble was hauled around in a Chevy station wagon pulling a little red trailer as a part-time band playing sock hops, private parties and an occasional club, whenever an owner would risk having them.

    In the latter 1960s, the group brought in a horn section, leading to major changes in its sound and membership.

  • Called one of the hottest bands in the Southeast, The Mark Roberts Band specializes in suitable-for-dancing sounds of beach and classic rock.

    The Wilmington-based band is heating up the next Ocean Isle Beach summer concert stage at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 14, in the parking lot of the Museum of Coastal Carolina.

    The band’s don’t-miss style is described as soulful, dynamic and downright magical.

    “Our shows are designed to touch everyone,” says band namesake/front man Mark Roberts, who also serves as lead vocalist.

  •  By Linda Arnold

    Life Columnist

    We’ve all been there. Someone makes a random comment and it drives you right up the wall!

    Whenever something impacts you in such a deep way, it’s usually because of a belief or fear you have on some level.

  •  It’s back-to-school time! Yellow buses cruising neighborhoods, stores shouting sales on student supplies and millions of children begging for an extra hour of sleep. As you prepare your family for the coming school year, don’t forget your pets. Those lazy days of summer are soon to be interrupted by early morning chaos and frenzy, creating anxiety in many dogs and cats.

  •  By John Nelson

    You think it’s hot now? It’s just the beginning of August. It’s time for everyone to take a deep, air-conditioned breath and figure out ways to deal with the weather.

    One way is to remember that before long, there will be signs of autumn (so soon?) and eventually everything will be cooling off, with displays of autumnal blooming everywhere. Our mystery plant is one of the autumn-bloomers and it packs an olfactory punch.

  • SOUTHPORT — Adventurers interested in a different kind of day trip need look no further than the ferries in this historic waterfront town.

    Visitors with vehicles can drive on board the Fort Fisher Ferry, departing regularly throughout the day to cross the Cape Fear River from the Southport terminal at 1650 Ferry Road.

    The Bald Head Island ferry carries passengers to the lush 12,000-acre Brunswick County island, where bicycles and golf carts are the only means of transportation.


    Southport-Fort Fisher ferries

  • Since its inception, The Tim Clark Band has been wowing audiences wherever it goes.

    It’s expected the band will do the same when it performs at the next Sunset Beach Summer Concert scheduled from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. next Wednesday, Aug. 12, at the gazebo in Village Park on Queen Anne Street. (For more details, go to www.SunsetBeachConcerts.com.)

  •  About this column

    “Live Life Fully” is a new syndicated column by Linda Arnold making its debut today in the Beacon. The column examines everyday challenges and offers practical suggestions, interspersed with humor, drawing from the author’s experience in the fields of psychology, business, health and wellness.

  •  By Linda Arnold

    You know the feeling. That nagging voice that asks over and over again.

    Maybe it’s that small voice inside — or maybe it’s coming from a colleague, friend, family member or the media.

    We’re so busy with our lives — juggling all the balls — that we often don’t hear that inner spirit, imploring us to follow our passion and fulfill our purpose in life.

    Huh? Who’s got time to focus on stuff like that?

    The big question

  •   When I graduated from veterinary school 23 years ago, we were taught felines had the most efficient musculoskeletal system of any land mammal on the planet. Because cats were so well designed and adapted, they incurred very few injuries or diseases involving their joints and bones. Osteoarthritis, the most common cause of joint pain in animals, was something only rarely diagnosed in cats, if ever. Turns out we were wrong.

  •  By John Nelson

    Flowers, of course, come in quite an assortment of sizes. The smallest flowers of any plant you are likely to see probably belong to the tiny, floating duckweeds. And the largest, at least in North America, must surely belong to various species of Magnolia. But what wildflower has the biggest bloom? Could it be this one?