Grand Strand Newsmakers

Jay Bertha serves Fish Fry dinners to those in attendance at a recent Lenten Fish Fry at VFW Calabash Post No. 7288.
Jay Bertha serves Fish Fry dinners to those in attendance at a recent Lenten Fish Fry at VFW Calabash Post No. 7288.



Fourth Annual “Excellence in Musical Accomplishments” Program

The South Strand Optimist Club held its fourth annual “Excellence in Musical Accomplishments” Program at its monthly meeting on Jan. 19 at Applewood House of Pancakes, 14361 Ocean Highway, Litchfield. This program recognized musically gifted middle/intermediate school students in grades 6 through 8 in public and private schools in the South Strand. This program was sponsored by the South Strand Optimist Club.

Those honored for their musical abilities included: Luke Alford, Vocalist/Instrumentalist, 6th Grade, Coastal Montessori Charter School, nominated by Chad Thompson, Music and Drama Teacher; Sophie Bensch, Vocalist/Chorus/Band, 8th Grade, Waccamaw Middle School, nominated by Drew Trautman, Choir Director and Department Head; Anna Margaret Loftus, Vocalist/Chorus, 6th Grade, Waccamaw Intermediate School, nominated by Bethany P. Miller, Chorus & Drama Director; Audra Nesbit, Band/Chorus/Drama, 7th Grade, nominated by Laura Cameron, Band Director and Desiree Meyer, Chorus Director and Drama Teacher; and Audrey Reynolds, Chorus/Band/Orchestra/SJHS Marching Band, 8th Grade, nominated by Jodie Rowe, Band Director, Lauren Willis, Chorus Director, and Ashley Purcell, Orchestra Director.

The South Strand Optimist Club serves the Town of Surfside Beach, the communities of Burgess, St. James, Garden City Beach, Murrells Inlet, the Waccamaw Neck, and the City of Georgetown.

Optimist Clubs are known throughout the world for ‘Bringing Out the Best in Kids.’ Our local slogan is “Recognizing Future Leaders.”

“If you would like to be involved in recognizing our community’s youth and those that assist them, we welcome you to join our effort,” Waltemyer said.

For more information and to reserve your place at an upcoming meeting, call or email Marty Waltemyer.


Sheriff Cribb Announces Employees of the Year for 2016

Sheriff A. Lane Cribb recently awarded employees with honors for their outstanding performance during 2016.

The Correctional Officer of the Year was awarded to Cpl. Jason Howdyshell. Cpl. Howdyshell has been employed by the Georgetown County Detention Center for over three (3) years. Cpl. Howdyshell is someone who puts others ahead of himself and who values integrity. His commitment and compassion exemplifies what it means to be a true public servant. None, of these kind words stand up to the most descriptive word of this year’s nominee and that is courage.

Telecommunications Officer of the Year was awarded to Jasmine Temple. Telecommunicator Temple has been employed by the sheriff’s office at the 911 Center since 2014. Some qualities attributed to Miss Temple by her fellow employees are dependable, fabulous, a huge asset to the agency, great call taker and someone who strives to be an exemplary team player while she is performing her assigned duties. Miss Temple is always eager and willing to help others.

There is not one positive attribute that makes her stand out, but a collection of several positive qualities that makes her an exceptionally well-rounded individual and employee. Deputy Sheriff of the Year was awarded to Cpl. James Elmore. Cpl. James Elmore, who has been employed with the sheriff’s office for 20 years, is described by his fellow officers as a team player, promotes teamwork, and is an effective leader. He works closely with the members of his team to make sure that the Transport Division is accomplishing its mission by operating efficiently and effectively so other agency personnel can return to their assigned duties. Cpl. Elmore takes his leadership role very seriously; accepts and carries out additional responsibilities beyond his regular job assignments for the greater good of the citizens of Georgetown County.

Please join the Georgetown County Sheriff’s Office in congratulating them on their hard work.


South Carolina Independent School Association Regional Spelling Bee

Lowcountry Preparatory School hosted the South Carolina Independent School Association Regional Spelling Bee on Jan. 25. Eight other schools ventured to Pawleys Island to compete. Chetna Patel, Lowcountry sophomore, served as the Bee’s official pronouncer, an honor bestowed upon her as a former Spelling Bee Champion. Students representing Lowcountry Prep School included third graders Maisie Davis and Ashley O’Neal; fourth graders Nolan Bohan and Emma Rusnak; fifth graders Ben Hall and Dale Sankum; sixth graders David Allen and Brandon Mercado; seventh graders Anne-Hackett Little and Cameron Tedrow; and eighth graders Thomas Prosser and Olivia Collins.

The morning began with the fifth-grade spellers tackling challenging words right out of the gate such as “patina,” “potash,” “caucus," and “bowery." Ben Hall correctly spelled “newton” and finished in fifth place. Lowcountry’s fourth graders finished in the top three, with Nolan Bohan spelling correctly “croon," “bamboo,” and “tomato,” and Emma spelling correctly “dross,” “pampas,” and “hominy.” Nolan finished in third place and Emma is a finalist, moving on to SCISA’s State Spelling Bee on February 15 in Kingstree, SC. Lowcountry’s third graders were our shining stars. Both Maisie Davis and Ashley O’Neal finished as finalists, defeating the rest of the field by spelling words such as “scow,” “geta,” “karma,” “panzer,” and “fennel.”

The afternoon session started with the sixth graders where David Allen spelled “bonanza” and “sarcasm” while Brandon Mercado persevered as a finalist. Brandon recited the spelling of “impasse,” “seersucker,” “hinterland,” “ninja,” and “irony” to defeat his peers. The fourteen contestants in the seventh grade had obviously studied; this Bee spelldown lasted the longest! When there were three students left standing, Lowcountry had its two contestants still alive. Anne-Hackett spelled “credible,” “angst,” “yamen,” “tamale,” “finale,” “syntax,” and added an unfortunate extra vowel to “discern,” which landed her a third-place win. Cameron Tedrow repeated his victorious performance of the year before by spelling “rucksack,” “feldspar,” “beige,” “deluxe,” “simile,” “zinnia,” and “biopsy.” As a strong finish, Lowcountry’s eighth graders both made it to the top three spellers, with Thomas Prosser correctly spelling “mattress,” “buckwheat,” and “samurai,” and Olivia Collins spelling “waywiser,” “polymer,” and “nemesis.” Thomas ended up in third place and Olivia Collins will represent Lowcountry Prep at the SCISA State Bee next month.

Lowcountry Prep is also pleased to announce Emma Rusnak as our Lower School Spelling Bee Champion. Emma will attend the Sun News Spelling Bee at St. James High School on March 11. This is the qualifying Bee for the Scripps National Spelling Bee held outside of Washington, DC (and featured on ESPN). Cameron Tedrow was named Lowcountry’s Middle School Spelling Bee Champion. He will join Emma at St. James High School in March and Olivia Collins was named his alternate.



CCU places in top 10 for GameDay Recycling Challenge

Coastal Carolina University placed in the top 10 of 47 universities participating in the 2016 GameDay Recycling Challenge, a nationwide competition among universities to reduce and recycle the trash generated at home football games.

CCU finished sixth after diverting 82.36 percent of waste during a home football game on Nov. 12, 2016. The waste was either recycled or composted with the help of 20 volunteers and 12 Sustain Coastal student workers. The volunteers collected waste from the alumni tailgate, student tailgate, parking lots, stadium suites and throughout the stadium itself.

More than 975 pounds of compostables, 2,060 pounds of recyclables and 650 pounds of trash were taken to the Horry County Solid Waste Authority’s processing facilities after the game, according to Jeremy Monday, sustainability coordinator.

“What a tremendous effort by the volunteers, Sustain Coastal student employees and campus partners to get this impressive result,” said Monday. “It certainly wouldn’t be possible without everyone working together on a project this large.”

Universities compete nationwide in the GameDay Recycling Challenge. In 2015, 99 schools recycled 2.1 million pounds of bottles, cans, paper, cardboard and 457,000 pounds of food organics from stadiums and tailgating areas. This competition aims to raise awareness and inspire action about waste reduction. In 2016, more than 2,667,845 pounds of materials were recycled, composted or donated throughout the season, which is a 4.8 percent increase from the totals in 2015.

Other schools included in the top 10 were Ohio University, Eastern Washington University, Duke University, University of Rochester, the University of Akron, the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville, the University of Minnesota, Rutgers University and the University of Arizona Office of Sustainibility.

The GameDay Recycling Challenge is administered by the College and University Recycling Coalition (CURC), RecycleMania, Keep America Beautiful and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s WasteWise. To learn more about the GameDay Recycling Challenge, visit www.gamedaychallenge.org.


Rotary Club of Carolina Forest Sunrise Learns About United Way Campaign



Lenten Fish Fry Dinners at the Calabash VFW

VFW Calabash Post #7288 will again observe the Lenten Season with its Fabulous Fish Fry dinners every Friday during Lent. Beginning March 3 and continuing each Friday through April 14th the Post will serve up a generous serving of haddock, french fries, and coleslaw for $11. Those desiring clam chowder may purchase it for an additional $1. The dinners are being served from 5 to 7 p.m. VFW Calabash Post #7288 is located at 900 Carter Drive and anyone with questions may call the Post at 910-579-3577.


Sons & Daughters of the American Revolution Attend Grave Marking Ceremony

Brunswick Town Chapter DAR members recently attended a Commemoration and Grave Marking Ceremony at Brunswick Town/ Fort Anderson in Winnabow, NC, which was sponsored by the Lower Cape Fear Chapter, NCSAR at Brunswick Town to honor Patriots Gov. Benjamin Smith and the Honorable Alfred Moore.