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Features

  • Music has a way of lifting your spirits.

    Just ask Jere and Sandy Cherryholmes.

    In 1999, their oldest daughter, Shelly, 20, died in her sleep from respiratory failure.

    To cope with the loss, Jere, a carpenter for the Los Angeles County school system and Sandy, who was homeschooling their children, Cia, B.J., Skip and Molly Kate, took the family to a nearby bluegrass festival.

    There – while listening to Jim & Jesse and the Virginia Boys – the Cherryholmes found healing.

    They also found inspiration and a new calling on their lives.

  • These days, fitness means more than a walk on the treadmill for those at Prime Time for Seniors Center.

    A group there is learning how to exercise their minds through Breakfast for your Brain.

    Based on Dr. Marge Engleman’s “Aerobics of the Mind,” the weekly course teaches seniors to take mental fitness seriously.

    Until about 25 years ago, most researchers believed that memory loss was a part of the natural aging process.

  • After 37 years, some things never change.

    Fred Adams, Donald Boone, Noland Broach, Jack Sistare, Morrison Thompson and Louie Watts still get together around a well-worn table inside the South 200 Drive-In on Great Falls Highway each morning.

    It’s there – between sips of hot coffee, bites of hot breakfast and rounds of warm laughter – the men try to solve global warming and understand cold-hearted politicians.

    But one thing has changed about their early-morning ritual.

    Restaurant owner Larry Small no longer lets them in.

  • On Thanksgiving, we celebrate with turkey and pumpkin pies. The center of Christmas is the birth of a savior. Valentine’s Day is sweetened by chocolate and overly-sentimental cards.

    Mother’s Day is flowers, treating mom to lunch and a little extra pampering.

    Veterans Day is filled with parades to honor our servicemen and service women for their sacrifice.

    We even know what we’re supposed to do on Earth Day, World AIDS Day and Arbor Day.

    However, there’s one holiday, or technically, an un-holiday, that has me bamboozled.

  • This week, the mercury in the thermometer is bottoming out.

    Meteorologists aren’t predicting a daily high temperature of more than 40 degrees in this portion of the Piedmont.

    And during Carolina cold snaps like this one, nothing beats a pair of thick wool socks and a piping hot bowl of soup.

    Homemade soups not only soothe the soul, they also ease the pocketbook.

    Recent studies show that one of the way American consumers have responded to hard economic times is by altering their eating habits, which includes eating at home more.

  • Soon, smoke will be in the air as South Carolina’s foresters, farmers and other land managers begin a very busy part of their year.

    Traditional controlled burning season is fast approaching and is the time when the ancient tool of controlled fire (good fire) is put to use for the benefit of all South Carolinians. Controlled burning (igniting forest fires under controlled conditions) has many benefits including reducing the risk of wildfire (bad fire), preparing land for planting, controlling diseases and undesirable plants and enhancing wildlife habitat.

  • A woman battling the emotional and physical side effects of chemotherapy or radiation treatment always needs a special touch.

    That’s where Look Good...Feel Better comes in.

    Described by the American Cancer Society as a “makeover for the spirit,” the program helps women fighting cancer boost their confidence and self-esteem.

    Done quarterly in Lancaster County, the next Look Good...Feel Better class is 2 p.m. Monday at Springs Memorial Hospital.

  • When Tornita Adams went into labor about 5:30 p.m. Friday, she was hoping for a New Year’s Day baby.

    But Zantwan Marqual Adams had something else in mind. He decided to wait until the next day. And this time, he got his way.

    Zantwan, the newborn son of Adams and Charles Mobley 

    made his grand entrance at 1:28 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 2, at Springs Memorial Hospital. Tornita was due Jan. 12.

    Zantwan is not only Lancaster County’s first baby of 2010, he is also the first county birth in a new decade.

  • Write-in campaigns, resigning town council members, a “hiking” governor and long lines at the unemployment office are just four of the issues we experienced in 2009.

    We lost some neighbors with the deaths of Sonny Bowers, Bobbie Hagins, Ray Knight and Dick Weisner. These are good people whose lives made a difference. OK, that’s enough of the bad news.

    We saw the good in people, too, like the Backpack Buddies, a non-denominational church partnership that makes sure that Heath Springs Elementary School students have nutritious meals on the weekend.

  • Many residents will start taking down Christmas trees this weekend as the 2009 holiday season winds down.

    The city of Lancaster and Lancaster County are working together again to reduce on holiday waste through treecycling.

    Real Christmas trees are biodegradable, which means they can be easily reused and recycled.

    Instead of having Christmas trees take up landfill space, they will be removed from the waste stream and ground into mulch.

  • The next few days are the last hurrah.

    No, it’s not the end of 2009 and the beginning of 2010; it’s the annual college football bowl season.

    Between today and Jan. 7, there are 21 televised college football games on the schedule.

    You are your friends might not be able to agree on whether Idaho or Bowling Green will win today’s Humanitarian Bowl  in Boise, Idaho.

    You might not even care.

    The women in your family might be rooting for the team with the prettiest jerseys by opening kickoff. 

  • When Debbie Crenshaw looked across the Lancaster High School cafeteria on Dec. 19, she smiled at the sight of smiling children.

    But for Crenshaw, a volunteer for Operation Blue and Gold Santa, it was an apprehensive smile, at best.

    Yes, a group of Lancaster High School student-athletes, along with the Bruins booster club, Lancaster Children’s Home, several businesses and HOPE in Lancaster, made sure the night was special for some of the county’s neediest families.

  • In driving around Lancaster, it’s evident that county residents love to deck the halls and yards this time of year. 

    Wreaths, bows, candles  and glowing reindeer prove that Christmas is indeed here. 

    The home of Linda Deas, at 417 Meeting St., is a beautiful example of that and has been awarded the Yard of the Month for December by the Lancaster Council of Garden Clubs.

    Tucked beside businesses, Deas said she sometimes feels that no one notices her house and yard. However, much to her surprise, that’s just not the case. 

  • Our lives are like a pot of good Caribbean vegetable soup, says Omileye “Omi” Achikeobi-Lewis.

    There are red peppers, garlic, onions, carrots, yellow peppers, orange peppers, green peppers, celery, sweet potatoes, white potatoes, stock and just the right amount of nutmeg, soy sauce, seasonings and fresh thyme, mixed with fresh coconut milk and love.

    Once the ingredients are simmered and cooked down, the pot has everything that is needed to keep a body healthy and strong.

  • Gary and Susan McCorkle don’t know if their Henry Harris Road home will ever be inside a town. It could happen if Indian Land keeps growing.

    But if it doesn’t, that’s OK with them, seeing as there’s a town inside their home.

    And this town is something to behold. It just goes to show that the best Christmas lights aren’t always outside.

    Twenty years ago, the McCorkles started collecting pieces for a Department 56 Snow Village.

    They now have close to 60 buildings and hundreds of accessories.

  • Since his days as a firefighter for the city of Lancaster, local businessman Gonzie Mackey has been in the middle of bicycle sprockets, handle bars and kickstands this time of year.

    Mackey and the brothers of Pleasant Grove Missionary Baptist Church repair and recondition used bicycles to give to children as Christmas gifts.

    But this year, it’s been a little different. Mackey said There aren’t enough bicycles to go around.

    “Last year, we had bikes lined up as far as you could see,” Mackey said.

  • The season to spend a little leisure time with family, friends and co-workers is now in full swing.

    But that also means the time to do so is at a premium. Here are a few tips and recipes to help you spend a little more time enjoying the social components of the holidays and less time preparing for it.

  • Derrick Stogner is only 14 years old.

    But when it comes to Fraser firs, he already knows more than I ever will.

    Derrick, a member of Boy Scout Troop 180 and a freshman at Buford High School, knew exactly what Ronny Faile and I were looking for when we stopped by the troop’s Christmas tree lot Tuesday evening.

    That live tree is now decked and visible from the window of Lakewood Christian Church on Kershaw Camden Highway.

  • From a technical standpoint, the color of the 2009 Christmas in Lancaster ornament is listed as pantone color No. 548.

    What does that mean?

    It means this year’s collectible tree ornament is “Founders Blue.”

    Kept a secret for almost six months, See Lancaster unveiled the ornament  at a reception Monday night at the Springs Gallery on East Gay Street.

    And as it was billed, it is indeed representative of the county’s moving from the old to the new.

  • Christmas cactuses may be in short supply at some stores this year, but they aren’t on Jean Boatright’s closed-in back porch.

    And no matter how hard her husband, Jerry, tries, he just can’t get away from them.

    Some may think Jean has gone a little overboard in her admiration of the tropical-type plants, but not Jerry. It’s just fine with him.