The Cleveland House Kids, a group of individuals with developmental disabilities who meet at Cleveland House once a week for a socialization program, participated in the Bayport Mardi Gras parade, Saturday, January 24. Pictured is Cleveland House director, Robert McGhee and Roger Moss. (Photo courtesy of Jean Moss)
Mobile Arc will celebrate its 34th Annual Mobile Association of Reveling Cavaliers Parade at 1 p.m. on Thursday, February 4 at the Gordon Smith Center. A press release from Mobile Arc reports that this parade was founded in 1983 to give people with developmental disabilities the opportunity to experience and celebrate Mardi Gras along with the Mobile community.
This year's theme is "Decades," and floats will be decorated to reflect eras such as the 1920s or 1770s. Mel Showers and Rose Ann Haven are returning as Grand Marshals, and Darwin Singleton is returning as the Reveling Cavalier.
Parade participants will include Mobile Arc's Royalty Courts, Goodwill Easter Seals cheer squad and Kaleidoscope program, Mobile Police and Fire Departments, high school marching bands and many other service organizations. If the parade is rained out on February 4th, it will roll Friday, February 5 at 1 p.m.
The Mobile Arc royalty court coronations will be held the day before the parade, and many of the costumes worn by the courts during the festivities are donated by local mystic societies.
The following royalty courts from each of the Mobile Arc's divisions will reign over this year's festivities:
* Fred Delchamps Center--King Franklin Reuben, Queen Linda Grimes, Knight Steven Bellah and Lady-in-Waiting Deborah Huff.
* Mobile Arc Enterprises Central Division--King Joe Miller, Queen Tara Terry, Knight Reginald Keeling, Lady-in-Waiting Michelle Taylor.
* Mobile Arc Enterprises Southern Division--King Thomaston Lynch, Queen Jackie Sullivan, Knight Ethan Newberry, Lady-in-Waiting Sheila Sisk, and Mobile Arc Banner Carriers Terry Coleman and Terry Campbell.
* Moorer Learning Center--King Rodricko Eli, Queen Meiyada Washington, Knight Samuel Owens, and Lady-In-Waiting Phyllis Ceravolo, Miss Mardi Gras Dorothy Beck and Mr. Mardi Gras Freddie Goldsmith.
* Residential Services--King Bobby Mack and Queen Mary Nell Caldwell.
Founded in 1956, Mobile Arc (formerly M.A.R.C.) is a non-profit advocacy and service system for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, including Down syndrome, autism, cerebral palsy and other diagnoses. By providing opportunities for education, recreation, skill development, transportation, employment and housing, Mobile Arc helps these individuals achieve their life goals and become active members of the community. Monetary donations are always welcome to help support the many programs of Mobile Arc; however, Mardi Gras throws and costumes are appreciated.
For more information on Mobile Arc, call 251-479-7409 or visit www.mobilearc.org. Mobile arc is at 2424 Gordon Smith Drive, Mobile, AL, 36617.
The Semmes Camellia Festival, first begun in 1949, was revived in 2013. This year, the event will be held Saturday, January 30, 10 a.m. 2 p.m. at Satsuma First Baptist Church, 4070 Wulff Road.
Visitors can view beautiful blooms displayed by professional growers and those who grow camellias in their backyard. They can see table-scapes featuring camellias, admire camellia-themed collections, receive information and advice from experts.
In addition, other locations around Semmes will also be included in this year's Festival: the Semmesonian Art Space at Semmes Public Library will includes some camellia art, Semmes Heritage Park will hold open house from noon until 2 p.m. and Camellia Park will welcome visitors.
In the photo above, taken at an earlier Festival, are Lib Dodd, who, with her husband, Tom Dodd, was a pioneer in the Semmes nursery business; Sarah Wilson of Semmes; two of the five Camellia Maids, Paige Warren and Mila Dixon; Walter Creighton, past president of Camellia Club of Mobile and Alice Creighton, holding a photo of the "Alice Creighton" bloom that Walter Creighton developed a few years ago and named for her. Mr. Creighton will again be showing his award-winning camellias.
Table-scapes and bloom displays are still welcome; set-up time is 9 a.m. on the 30th.
For more information, call Jeanette Byrd, 251-649-1647 or Alice Dodd Baker, 251-645-3280.
Friday, January 22, was surely a night to remember for Karen Simmons as family, friends, co-workers, dignitaries and members of SouthWest Mobile County Chamber of Commerce honored her as 2015 Citizen of the Year.
After Chamber President Donna Abercrombie welcomed guests, Dr. Alice Frederick and COY Chair Theresa Orrell gave presentations on Simmons' accomplishments and qualities that led to her having been selected as Citizen of the Year.
Among the many boards and organizations on which Simmons has served are the Beckwith Children's Camp, West Mobile Rotary Club, Relay for Life, United Cerebral Palsy Breakfast with Santa, Junior Achievement and Crewe de la Dauphine Mardi Gras society. Simmons was nominated for COY by an employee of her CPA firm, Amanda Graves.
Simmons received several plaques, commendations and proclamations, including one from the Mobile mayor's office (presented by Abercrombee); Mobile County Commission, represented by Jerry Carl; Alabama State Senate, presented by Sen. Bill Hightower and Rep. Margie Wilcox; Gov. Robert Bentley and special recognition by her daughter, Cadie Simmons. January 22 was declared by the City as "Karen Simmons Day."
Simmons' philosophy, which she said was best exemplified in a taped message by TV personality Steve Harvey, is that "You have to have faith to jump." All who spoke of Simmons indicated that she has never been afraid to jump, to take that leap of faith, to, as Margie Wilcox noted, "be there when people need her."
The Citizen of the Year dinner at the Tillman's Corner Community Center was provided by Grand Catering, Inc.; decorations were by Tina Poiroux, Executive Director of the Community Center.
Below are scenes from the banquet honoring Karen Simmons as SouthWest Mobile County Citizen of the Year 2015. Photos are by Jo Anne McKnight.
Below, in somewhat chronological order, are some of the many events going on in Mobile County the next week or so.
The Gulf Coast EXPLOREUM Science Center will be closed Monday, January 25-Friday, January 29 for exhibit removal and maintenance. The Center will reopen on Saturday, January 30 with new exhibits and new IMAX Dome films. One thing visitors can look forward to is "Da Vinci: Machines and Robotics," February 10-May 16, 2016.
The American Cancer Society's "South Alabama Look Good Feel Better" program is Monday, January 25, 5:30 p.m. at Spring Hill Medical Center Gerald Wallace Auditorium. Call 1-800-227-2345 to register.
"Cocktails and Canvases" at Dauphin Island Art Gallery is Tuesday, January 26, 7-9 p.m. Sponsored by Dauphin Island Heritage and Arts Council at the Gallery, 918 Bienville Boulevard, the event lets participants paint a beautiful Dauphin Island sunset; Master Artist Benno Kolleger will direct the session. Call 251-490-0294 for information and reservations.
Cuisine for Kids to benefit the Child Advocacy Center is Tuesday, January 26. On this day, the following restaurants, delis and other eateries will donate a portion of their proceeds to help fight child abuse in the Mobile area: Ashland Midtown Pub, Atlanta Bread Company, Baumhower’s Wings Mobile, Baumhower’s Wings Daphne, Beef O Brady’s (Rangeline Rd.), Bone and Barrel (Fairhope), Briquettes ( Montlimar & Schillinger), Buffalo Wild Wings, Bumpers Billiards, Butch Cassidy’s Café, 219, Callaghan’s Irish Social Club, Cammie’s Old Dutch Ice Cream Shoppe, Chicken Salad Chick, Fire House Subs (Grelot, 2 on Airport Blvd., Halls Mill Rd.), Five Guys (Old Shell), Hickory Pit Too, Jimmy Johns (DuRhu , Airport, & Royal St.), LuLu’s at Homeport Marina, MaGhee’s Grill on the Hill, Micheli’s Café, Mirko Pasta, Moe’s Original Bar B Que ( Springhill Ave. & Airport),Montego’s Caribbean Café & Bar (Dauphin St. & Airport), Mugshots Grill & Bar, Regina’s Kitchen, Roly Poly, Saucy Q Bar B Q, Serda’s Coffee Company, Uncle Maddios West and Via Emilia.
Naiad Temple 109 Annual Card/Game Party is Wednesday, January 27, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at Abba Shrine Auditorium, 7701 Hitt Road. Fee is $10 per person (includes lunch.) There will be a silent auction and a Sweet Shoppe. In addition, the group is selling opportunity tickets on $100; all proceeds benefit Shriners Hospitals for Children.
The topic of Winter Wednesdays at Bellingrath Gardens & Home on January 27, 10:30-11:30 a.m. will be "Birding Along the Gulf Coast." Dr. Mark La Salle, Director of the Pascagoula River Audubon Center, will tell guests how to identtify Gulf Coast birds and how they can participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count. Call 251-973-2217 for reservations.
The Government Street Forum at Government Street Presbyterian Church, 300 Government Street, is Thursday, January 28. Casi Callaway, Executive Director of Mobile Baykeeper, will speak on "Water Quality, Mobile Bay and You: Stormwater, litter, sewer and other key issues in 2016." The $10 lunch is at noon; the free forum begins at 12:30 p.m. Call 251-432-1749 for information.
Junk Food Bingo, hosted by Linda Boullion Smith, is Friday, January 29, 6:30 p.m. at the Guy T. Smith Lodge, 6715 Dauphin Island Parkway in Mobile. The cost is $10 per person, which includes a meal and four bingo cards (playing for prizes.) Proceeds benefit cancer research.
On Friday, January 29, 11:45 a.m.-1 p.m. at the University of South Alabama Student Center, the Alabama Coastal Foundation will present a Lifetime of Conservation Achievement Award to Dr. George Crozier.
"Tartuffe" ends its run at Joe Jefferson Playhouse the weekend of January 29-31; times are 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m. on Sunday. Call 251-471-1534 for reservations.
Last Friday Art Night at Dauphin Island Gallery is January 29, 6-8 p.m. Visitors can shop for local art, view art demonstrations, browse the Heritage Gallery, enjoy food and refreshments and socialize with their neighbors. Dauphin Island artists continue providing free art classes to Dauphin Island Elementary School students at the newly formed and highly successful Art Club. A contest is planned in May. In other community activities, the Dauphin Island Heritage and Art Council's "Art in Public Places" has art displayed at the Isle Dauphine Supper Club and Islanders Restaurant with Holiday Isle the next planned venue.
Semmes Camellia Festival is Saturday, January 30, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at First Baptist Church of Semmes, 4070 Wulff Road. The free event, which features camellia displays, table-scapes, camellia-themed collections and educational booths also includes an Open House at Semmes Heritage Park, noon-2 p.m., and an art show at Semmes Public Library.Attendees are encouraged to visit Semmes' newest public park, Camellia Park, on Illinois Street. Call Jeanette Byrd, 251-649-1647 or Alice Baker, 251-645-3280 for information..
Grand Bay Community Breakfast, sponsored by Citizens for a Better Grand Bay, is Saturday, January 30, 9-10 a.m. Held the last Saturday of the month, the Breakfast and Omelet Buffet is at Grand Bay-St. Elmo Senior Community Center, 11610 Highway 90 W. in Grand Bay. A $5 donation for the breakfast is requested.
On Saturday, January 30, the annual "Day in the Life of A Civil War Soldier" will take place at Fort Gaines Historic Site on the east end of Dauphin Island. Visitors can see open-hearth cooking, drilling, blacksmith demonstrations and more. Call 251-861-6992 for information.
Creola First Baptist Church Revival, with Evangelist Jon Reed, is January 31, 6 p.m. and February 1, 6:30 p.m.
At 7:30 on Friday morning, February 5, St. Elmo Feed & Seed, 9001 Highway 90 W., will host "Breakfast with the Babies," an event to introduce the public to the hundreds of baby chicks ready for purchase. For more information, call Tracy McCarter at 251-957-2177 or 251-633-7607.
Coastal Response Center South Bay Project's "Let the Good Times Roll in the Boon Docks" concert is Saturday, February 6, 5-10 p.m. at the Center on Highway 188 in Coden. There'll be live music, a raffle, crafts and food. Lori Bosarge, 251-206-9990, said admission is $5 for those 13 and older; those younger are admitted to this family event free. Don't forget to bring a few cans of food; each can gets a free door prize ticket.
Mobile Country Music Association's Building Fund Benefit is Saturday, February 6, 10:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. at the Concert Hall, 310 S. Craft Highway in Chickasaw. There's no admission charge; however, donations are accepted. A covered-dish lunch will be available for $5. Special guest is Nori Hendrix. For more information, call Marshall Fillingim, 251-457-0762 or Carolyn Cain, 251-455-6748.
On February 6, noon until 4 p.m., there will be a free Bridal Show at Grand Bay Community Center, 11610 Highway 90 West in Grand Bay. Brides and families can view the updated, redecorated venue and vendors will be available to share ideas for weddings or receptions. Call Kelli Bratton, 251-644-2080, for more information.
Seniors at Connie Hudson Mobile Regional Senior Community Center, 3201 Hillcrest Road, have a Mardi Gras Dance on February 12, 6-9 p.m. The cost of tickets is $6 each. Music will be by Figure Eight; the event is sponsored by Home Care Companions.
On Valentine's Day, Sunday, February 14, plan a fun night out and help Mission of Hope Ministries, too. Comedy Night at Cottage Hill Baptist Church begins at 6:30 p.m., with pre-show fun photos and vendors at 5:30 p.m. Featured will be Kay Dodd, Just Peppi and ComedyLou Rivera. Tickets begin at $20 plus convencience fees. Group discounts are available. Call 1-800-965-9324 for tickets.
News for Runners/Walkers:
* The 20th Annual Battle of Mobile Bay 5K Race, sponsored by the Port City Pacers, is Saturday, Febuary 13, 9 a.m., at Fort Gaines Historic Site on Dauphin Island. Proceeds benefit the preservation efforts at the Fort. For more information, see PCP website, www.pcpacers.org.
* The 4th Annual Lucky Ducky 5K Run/Walk and Fun Run, sponsored by the Auburn University Harrison School of Pharmacy to benefit Ozanam Charitable Pharmacy, is Saturday, February 27, 8-11 a.m. The event will be at the SGA Pavilion, Intramural Fields on the University of South Alabama campus, Cleverdon Road. Food, drinks and vendors will be on site before and after the race. For race information, visit
http://www.eventbrite.com/e/lucky-ducky-5k-runwalk-and-fun-run-tickets-19934601931?aff=es2. For more information about Ozanam Charitable Pharmacy, see http://www.ozanampharmacy.org.
In the Good News/Great Job Department:
* One Meal for the homeless, hungry and working poor went well Sunday, January 17, Coordinator Mike McKinley said. "Folks from First Assembly of Satsuma handed out blankets, and some other good folks handed out jackets and other warm clothing," he said.
* Habitat for Humanity of Southwest Alabama completed and dedicated the home of Harriett Tucker on January 8th. Habitat events coming up include installing a new roof on a home on January 28 and "A Brush with Kindness," sponsored by Airbus Americas Engineering beginning February 9, 2016. Volunteers are still needed; call Volunteer Coordinator Kayla Harris at 251-476-7171 ext. 231 or e-mail her at @habitatswalabama.org to register.
* The Mobile Chocolate Festival is Saturday, February 27, 2016, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at Abba Shrine Center, 7701 Hitt Road between Cody and Schillinger roads in Mobile. Featured will be vendors offering their chocolate-related products for sampling, as well as for purchasing. Also featured will be a children's area, Mobile Fixture Demonstration Stage, Chocolate Challenge, Bel Air Mall's Project YumWay, a cupcake booth, chocolate martini tasting and more. All proceeds from the event benefit Penelope House, whose mission is "to provide safety, protection and support to the victims of domestic violence and their children through the provision of shelter, advocacy and individual and community education." General admission is $3, with those 65 and older paying $2 and children 13 and younger entering free. Parking is free.
* The 47th Annual Historic Homes Tour, sponsored by Historic Mobile Preservation Society, is Friday and Saturday, March 11 and 12, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Ticket is good for both days. The homes on the tour are in the Leinkauf Historic District. Visit www.historicmobiletour.com for more information. Tickets are $25 a person in advance, $30 day of event; see Website: https://www.facebook.com/events/1536640263303554 for tickets.
Cuisine for Kids to benefit the Child Advocacy Center is Tuesday, January 26. On this day, the following restaurants, delis and other eateries will donate a portion of their proceeds to help fight child abuse in the Mobile area:
Ashland Midtown Pub, Atlanta Bread Company, Baumhower’s Wings Mobile, Baumhower’s Wings Daphne, Beef O Brady’s (Rangeline Rd.), Bone and Barrel (Fairhope), Briquettes ( Montlimar & Schillinger), Buffalo Wild Wings, Bumpers Billiards, Butch Cassidy’s Café, 219, Callaghan’s Irish Social Club, Cammie’s Old Dutch Ice Cream Shoppe, Chicken Salad Chick, Fire House Subs (Grelot, 2 on Airport Blvd., Halls Mill Rd.), Five Guys (Old Shell), Hickory Pit Too, Jimmy Johns (DuRhu , Airport, & Royal St.), LuLu’s at Homeport Marina, MaGhee’s Grill on the Hill, Micheli’s Café, Mirko Pasta, Moe’s Original Bar B Que ( Springhill Ave. & Airport),Montego’s Caribbean Café & Bar (Dauphin St. & Airport), Mugshots Grill & Bar, Regina’s Kitchen, Roly Poly, Saucy Q Bar B Q, Serda’s Coffee Company, Uncle Maddios West and Via Emilia.
Gulf Coast Exploreum Science Center will be closed January 25-January 29 for Exhibit Removal and Maintenance
Carol Jarvis will show Camellia Collector Plates at 2016 Semmes Camellia Festival, Saturday, January 30, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
One exhibit at the 2016 Semmes Camellia Festival on Saturday, January 30, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. will be Carol Jarvis' collection of camellia plates.
The Camellia Collector Plates, illustrated in the 1850s by artist Nicolas Liex, were made every year between 1979 and 2002, except 1983, 84, 87 and 88. They were given by Villeroy & Boch as "thank you" gifts to their distributors (Bloomingdale's and Macy's are among the department stores that carry Villeroy & Boch china.)
In the photo from the 2014 Semmes Camellia Festival, Jarvis shows one of the plates to Toni Davis of Semmes.
This year's Festival will be at Semmes First Baptist Church, 4070 Wulff Road. For more information, call Jeanette Byrd, 251-649-1647 or Alice Baker, 251-645-3280.
Semmes Camellia Festival will include collection of camellia prints by Lila Moore Keen, "The Lady of the Camellias"
Among the live camellia blooms, the table-scapes and the educational booths at Semmes Camellia Festival at Semmes First Baptist Church January 20, will be a display of six camellia prints of the art of Lila moore Keen.
The newly framed prints from the collection of Lib Dodd will be on a table featuring the history of Semmes as "the Nursery Capital of the Southeast."
Lila Moore Keen, known as "The Lady of the Camellias," was a prominent artist of the first half of the 20th Century. According to many Internet sites, she loved the flowers of her native Georgia, and had an unequaled talent for painting camellias, magnolias and other flowers of the South.
Keen dedicated her life to preserving the beauty of Southern flowers on her canvases. And, according to online sources, the least deviation from the true color or detail of the flowers was rejected and thrown away.
The artist was honored nationwide for her paintings, which were exhibited at the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C. every other year. She was honored by the American Camellia Society, and her flowers adorned the covers of national flower publications.
A couple of the online sites devoted to Keen and her works are http://womenofourliveslaurenscounty.blogspot.com/2009/09/lila-moore-keen.html and
http://www.askart.com/artist/Lila_Moore_Keen/68184/Lila_Moore_Keen.aspx. The photos in this article are drawn from those sites.
For more information on the Annual Semmes Camellia Festival, call Jeanette Byrd, 251-649-1647 or Alice Dodd Baker, 251-645-3280.
At 7:30 on Friday morning, February 5, St. Elmo Feed & Seed, 9001 Highway 90 W., will open its doors--and visitors to the annual Breakfast with the Babies will be greeted by the chirps and cheeps of 600 baby chicks.
This event comes with friendly conversation with folks from the Feed & Seed store, Mobile Bay Area Backyard Chicken Club and chick purchasers from surrounding farms (and suburban backyard chick lovers.) And there's always plenty of hot coffee and sweet doughnuts.
Chicks that will be on hand Friday, February 5 include Ameraucanas, Rhode Island Reds, Black Australorps, Barred Plymouth Rocks, White Leghorns, Red Sex Links, Buff Orpingtons, Rhode Island Whites, Cochins and Silkies.
A new crop of biddies arrive Friday, February 12; Friday, February 19; Wednesday, February 24 and Friday, February 26. The February 26 shipment includes French Guineas, ducks and geese. Check website www.stelmofeed.com for a listing of breeds coming in each each week.
Store representative, Tracy McCarter, said that the south Mobile County store is one of the few state-licensed poultry dealers on the Gulf Coast. All their poultry comes from a U.S. Pullorium Typhoid Clean hatchery. For more information, call her at 251-957-2177 or 251-633-7607.
"Over the Edge": The first 90 people to raise a minimum of $1,000 will get a chance to rappel 20 stories off the Mobile Marriott for selected charities
On Friday and Saturday, March 4 and 5, 90 people will rappel 20 stories off the Marriott Hotel on Airport Boulevard in Mobile for the "Over the Edge" fundraiser to benefit Mobile area charities. (The rest of us will be in the parking lot watching.)
In order to participate, each rappeller must raise a minimum of $1,000 to assist The 74 Club and Dennis Langan Construction in support of the following non-profit agencies and organizations: Mobile Arc, St. Mary's Home, McKemie Place, Ronald McDonald House, the Exchange Club, Woody's Song, Abba Shrine Children's Transportation Fund and the Family Center of Mobile.
The first 90 people to reach the $1,000 mark will be entered in the event. Registration is required; the fee is $100, which is applied to the $1,000 minimum.
Local celebrities and media personalities are scheduled to rappel on Friday, March 4; the main event will take place the following day.
For more information, contact Jeff Zoghby or Amy Odom at Mobile Arc, 251-479-7409. To register as a rappeller or to donate to a rappeller, visit visit www.otemobile.com.
Mobile Bay Area Backyard Chicken Club Breed Showcase is Sunday, January 24, 3 p.m. at Jon Archer Agricultural Center
The Mobile Bay Area Backyard Chicken Club is hosting a Breed Showcase on January 24 at the Jon Archer Agricultural Center, 1070 Schillinger Road North in Mobile. The event begins at 3 p.m.; doors open at 2:30 p.m. MBABCC President Travis Rayner said the focus will be on those "people that have a genuine interest in keeping backyard chickens."
The Mobile Bay Area Backyard Chicken Club is a 501 (C)(3) non-profit organization whose goal is to promote responsible flock management by educating members about the proper way to keep backyard chickens. While the Club's Facebook page is free to approved users, the organization also offers an actual club membership for $20 yearly (individual or family), which includes monthly educational meetings, door prizes, spring and fall picnic, Christmas Party and, in general, helps to cover the costs of maintaining the Club. "We currently have almost 1,400 users on our Facebook page," Rayner said.
For more information, contact Rayner at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone (voice or text) at 251-604-2131.
Junk Food Bingo to benefit Cancer Research is Friday, January 29 at Guy T. Smith Lodge, 6715 Dauphin Island Parkway
Junk Food Bingo, hosted by Linda Boullion Smith, is Friday, January 29, 6:30 p.m. at the Guy T. Smith Lodge, 6715 Dauphin Island Parkway in Mobile. The cost is $10 per person, includes a meal and four bingo cards (playing for prizes.) Proceeds benefit cancer research.
Naiad Temple #109 Annual Card/Game Party is Wednesday, January 27, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at Abba Shrine Auditorium
Naiad Temple #109 will host its Annual Card/Game Party on Wednesday, January 27, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at Abba Shrine Auditorium, 7701 Hitt Road, Mobile.
Fee of $10 per person pays for lunch and a fun time playing cards or games. There will also be a silent auction and The Sweete Shop will be open.
In addition, some lucky winner will walk away with $100; donations for opportunity tickets are $1 each or 6 for $5. All proceeds go to support Shriners Hospitals for Children.
From Joe Jefferson Playhouse: Auditions for Little Shop of Horrors Monday, January 18 at 7 p.m. and Tuesday, January 19 at 7 p.m.--not 6 p.m. as previously announced
The next Sons of the Desert meeting will be Sunday, January 24, 2016, 2:30 p.m. at the Playhouse in the Park, 4850 Museum Drive.
"Our program will consist of 'The Finishing Touch,' one of the boys' silents that we have not yet seen," said Richard Ward. "Then, to kick off the June 2016 release of my book on Pathé, we will see a Pathé short comedy from 1930 entitled 'Help Wanted, Female,' featuring 'The Finishing Touch' co-star Edgar Kennedy, occasional 'Mrs. Hardy,' Daphne Pollard, and Laurel and Hardy's favorite drunk, Arthur Houseman," Ward said.
After a break, the group will watch the last Laurel and Hardy talkie short they haven't seen yet--"Be Big." The show will conclude with "The Fixer Uppers," in which the boys are again joined by Arthur Houseman, along with Laurel and Hardy's favorite female supporting actor, Mae Busch, and Charles Middleton, a character actor who appeared as the camp commander in both of the boys' Foreign Legion films and who is best remembered today as "Ming the Merciless" in the Flash Gordon serials of the late 1930s.
"Set your DVRs to record the NFL playoff games and join us for a fun afternoon," Ward said.
7th Annual Spaghetti Dinner and Silent Auction to benefit Parkway Senior Center was Saturday, January 16, 2016
Standing, back row, Mary Jo Riley, Jean Gonzales and Mary McKeough of KOC Auxiliary; second row, from left, Alice Jones, Parkway Seniors; Lou Lartigue, KOC and Parkway Seniors Foundation; Betty Lartigue and Kathy Shaw, KOC Auxiliary and seated, Vickie Webster and Dolores Harvey, Parkway Senior Center
On Saturday, January 16, Our Lady of Lourdes Knights of Columbus and Parkway Senior Center Foundation, Inc. held the 7th Annual Spaghetti Dinner and Silent Auction to benefit Parkway SAIL Center for Seniors. Pictured are some scenes from the event.
SouthWest Mobile County Chamber of Commerce is presenting a free workshop, "Build your Marketing Toolkit for the New Year," on Tuesday, January 19, 9-10 a.m. The event is at Tillman's Corner Community Center, 5055 Carol Plantation Road. Call 251-666-2488 for more information.
The Winter Wednesdays at Bellingrath Gardens & Home session on January 20, 10:30-11:30 a.m., is entitled "Furnishing the Bellingrath Home." Tom McGehee, director of the Bellingrath Museum Home, will take guests on a special tour of the Home and describe its antique furnishings and decorative arts. He'll also describe Mrs. Bessie's unique negotiation techniques as she furnished the estate home on Fowl River in the 1930s. Call 251-973-2217 for information and reservations.
The Government Street Forum at Government Street Presbyterian Church is Thursday, January 21. The Forum will feature speaker Scott Hunter, former University of Alabama and NFL quarterback. His topic will be college football recruiting. A $10 lunch will be served at noon; the Forum, which is free, will begin at 12:30 p.m. Call the church at 251-432-1749 for further information.
Karen Simmons, SouthWest Mobile County Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year 2015, will be honored Friday, January 22, 6:30 p.m. at Tillman's Corner Community Center, 5055 Carol Plantation Road. Reservations for the banquet are required. RSVP by calling 251-666-2488.
An "Art as Business" education program is set for Saturday, January 23, 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. at Mobile Museum of Art. The workshop is for artists and entrepreneurs in any creative arts area, including visual, literary, performance, sculpture, painting, film or multi-media combination. The fee is $65. For information, contact Susie Bowman, 251-208-5205 or Susie.Bowman@MobileMuseumofArt.com.
The Mobile Bay Area Backyard Chicken Club will host a Breed Showcase at the Jon Archer Agricultural Center on Schillinger Road North, Sunday, January 24, 3 p.m. For more information, contact MBABYCC@att.net or call or text 251-204-2131.
For "A Fun Night Out with Friends," make plans to participate in "Cocktails & Canvases" at Dauphin Island Art Gallery on January 26, 7-9 p.m. The event, sponsored by Dauphin Island Heritage & Arts Council, lets participants paint a Dauphin Island sunset under the direction of Master Artist Benno Kolleger. Call 251-490-0294 or email DauphinIslandArts@gmail.com for registration and information.
The Alabama Coastal Foundation will conduct its Annual Meeting on Friday, January 29 from 11:45 a.m.-1 p.m. at the University of South Alabama Student Center (307 North University Boulevard, Mobile). During that meeting, Dr. George Crozier will be presented the Lifetime of Conservation Achievement Award. The price to attend ACF's Annual Meeting is $25. Registration deadline is at noon on January 22. Contact Mark Berte, Executive Director, ACF, 251-990-6002, 251-402-3936 or mberte@joinACF.org for information.
Semmes Camellia Festival is Saturday, January 30, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at Semmes First Baptist Church, 4070 Wulff Road. If you have beautiful camellias growing by your front door or in your backyard, consider sharing them with visitors to the exhibit. Or perhaps a business, organization, church or individual might create a table-scape with some significance or unique quality that would tell a story or set a scene using camellias. For those who do not care to participate but love comellias--this show is free and generally has hundreds of different varieties of blooms on exhibit. In addition, five lovely Camellia Maids, dressed in beautiful camellia-colored gowns, will be on hand to welcome guests; Semmes Heritage Park is holding Open House; Camellia Park will be on tour and an art display, featuring camellias, is hanging in the Semmesonian Art Space at Semmes Public Library. For more information, call Jeanette Byrd, 251-649-1647 or Alice Baker, 251-645-3280.
Though the finale is a few months off, Sharon Murrill of Relay for Life South Mobile County, notes that the ceremony will be held April 30, 4-10 p.m. at Theodore High School, 6201 Swedetown Road North in Theodore. Cancer survivors, caregivers, volunteers and community members will unite for this American Cancer Society event to help save lives from cancer. Murrill can be reached at 251-463-3736 or Murrills@bellsouth.net for further information.
Camp Bluebird, scheduled for April 13-15 at Camp Grace, is a camp for adults, 18 and older, who have been diagnosed or treated for cancer. Reservations are required by calling 251-639-2050.
The American Cancer Society's "South Alabama Look Good Feel Better" program is Monday, January 25, 5:30 p.m. at Springhill Medical Center--Gerald Wallace Auditorium. Call 1-800-227-2345 to register.
Mike McKinley, Coordinator of One Meal for the homeless and hungry, is trying to raise funds to build a large portable barbecue pit; the goal right now is to purchase a trailer for it at $250. A quick, easy fundraiser by some company or organization might easily raise $250--a potato bake, a raffle, a collection, think creatively! McKinley can be contacted at 251-379-9014 or 251-379-9015. For information on this non-profit group, its activities and its needs, see www.onemealmobile.com.
Just a few of the senior activities going on this month are listed below.
* The featured artist at the Semmes Senior Center, 9635 Moffett Road, is Vivian Stevens. Her works will be on display during January and Febrary.
* The Senior Dance at Tillman's Corner Community Center, 5055 Carol Plantation Road, is Thursday, January 21, 7-10 p.m. Dumas McLaney's County Line Band will provide the music.
* Saraland seniors have "Coffee with the Mayor" the 3rd Wednesday of the month (January 20) at Saraland Senior Center, 718 Mae Street. Mayor Howard Rubenstein shares information of the town's progress and answers questions and concerns the seniors pose. Call site director Lorine May at 251-375-5438 for information on other activities.
* Seniors at Connie Hudson Mobile Regional Senior Community Center, 3201 Hillcrest Road, might be brushing up their Quick Step for the Mardi Gras Dance on February 12, 6-9 p.m. The cost of tickets is $6 each. Music will be by Figure Eight; the event is sponsored by Home Care Companions.
* Semmes seniors can sign up for Thursday, January 21, 11:30 a.m. luncheon by calling 251-649-2010. A birthday celebration will follow at 12:30 p.m.
* The Parkway S.A.I.L. Center for Seniors, Boykin Boulevard at Dauphin Island Parkway, will be closed January 18, but activities continue the rest of the week--line dancing, walking, bingo. The Red Hat Club meets there on Wednesday, January 20, 9:30 a.m.
* Connie Hudson Mobile Regional Senior Center members can take a loom knitting class on Thursdays at 12:30 p.m. A description of the class notes that "Loom knitting is fun, easy, and faster than knitting with needles! You can make scarves, hats, sleeves, leggings, and many other useful things with a knitting loom."
The Mobile Public Library, with its many branch locations, offers numerous activities for all ages during the week of January 18-24, 2016. Included among them are the following activities:
* On Wednesday, January 20, 7 p.m., the Mobile Jewish Film Festival presents "Hester Street" in Bernheim Hall at the Ben May Main Library, 701 Government Street. The film is a 1975 classic that tells the story of Jewish immigrants who came from Europe to the lower east side of New York in 1896, and the challenges they faced. For more information or reservations, call 251-343-7197.
* Bayside Book Club will meet Thursday, January 21, 6 p.m. at Parkway Branch, 1924-B Dauphin Island Parkway. This month's topic of discussion is "Behind the Beautiful Forevers" by Katherine Boo. Call 251-476-2600, Betty Fowler, for more information.
* For little ones, aged 3 and older, "Something Special for Saturday" at Moorer/Spring Hill Branch Library lets them design and create their own Mardi Gras hats. The event is Saturday, January 23, 10:30 a.m.; call 251-470-7770 for more information.
* And at Semmes Library Branch, 9150 Moffett Road, children aged 6 and older can use their imagination and challenge their building skills with Legos on Saturday, January 23, 3-4 p.m. Call 251-645-6840 for information.
Mark your calendars!
* Runners--and walkers--get ready for the February 13 20th Annual Battle of Mobile Bay 5K Race at Dauphin Island. Sponsored by the Port City Pacers, the run will begin promptly at 9 a.m. near Fort Gaines Historic Site. The course will wind through east end neighborhoods before ending back at the Fort. Proceeds benefit preservation efforts at the historic site. More than 300 racers are expected to participate. For more information, visit www.pcpacers.org.
* Valentines for Hope to benefit Mission of Hope Ministries is hosting Comedy Night at Cottage Hill Baptist Church, 4255 Cottage Hill Road on Sunday, February 14, 6:30 p.m. Tickets start at $20 and can be purchased at 1-800-965-9324 or iTickets.com.
* The Community Foundation of South Alabama will celebrate 40 years during the 2016 Annual Luncheon on March 17, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Alabama Cruise Terminal. The luncheon tickets are $40 each or $300 for a table of 8. Keynote speaker will be Andy Newton, President and CEO of Southern Light. For more information, visit www.communityfoundationsa.org.
* In the 2016 Mobile Young Authors Programs, the Metro Mobile Reading Council will be producing two publications of student work--the 2016 Young Authors' Anthology (work by students in grades 3-6) and Both Sides of the Bay Teen Literary Magazine (work by students in grades 7-12.) The deadline for submissions is March 2; contact Elizabeth Gillespie at 251-391-5376 or email@example.com for details.
* "Over the Edge," a fundraiser to benefit several local non-profits, is Friday and Saturday, March 4 and 5 at the Mobile Marriott on Airport Boulevard in Mobile. This event, in which 90 participants will rappel 20 stories off the Marriott is sponsored by The 74 Club and Dennis Langan Construction. Over the Edge will help support St. Mary's Home, Mobile Arc, McKemie Place, Ronald McDonald House, the Exchange Club, Woody's Song, Abba Shrine Children's Transportation Fund and the Family Center of Mobile. The first 90 individuals to raise a minimum of $1,000 will have the opportunity to participate; registration to secure a place is a must and is $100, which will be applied to the $1,000 required. For more information, call Amy Odom or Jeff Zoghby at Mobile Arc, 251-479-7409.
In the Great News/Good Job Department:
* Congratulations to Robert E. Lee Elementary School, which received a $5,000 grant from Alabama Power Company's "Brighter Minds Education Initiative"; to Satsuma High School's Career Preparedness class, which received a $500 check from Taco Bell's "Graduate for Mas" program and to Palmer Pillans Middle School, chosen by the Exploreum, United Way of Southwest Alabama, Airbus, Mobile Area Education Foundation and the Mobile County Public School System as one of only two U.S. Flying Challenge sites.
* Stephen Dahmer, Director for Eagles Landing transitional housing program, 6501 Moffett Road, reports several pieces of good news from that facility: All 38 units are occupied; a grant from Community Foundation of South Alabama has been received and will be applied to the construction of a gym and chapel and a recent "graduate" from Eagles Landing is buying his first house. To contact Dahmer about speaking to your organization or business or to find out needs at Eagles Landing, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 251-421-1229.
Helping Hands, a community ministry to produce and provide baby items for Women's Resource Center/Sav-A-Life in Saraland, met Tuesday, January 12, 2016 for lunch and a work session. "We had a wonderfully productive day," said Coordinator Rosalie Howley. So far this month, the women have made and donated 178 items to Sav-A-Life; that number includes sewed and crocheted blankets, caps, booties, burp cloths, bibs, receiving blankets and wash cloths.
Participants in the Women's Resource Center/Sav-A-Life program earn points by attending parenting classes and can "buy" items with their points, Howley said. In addition, the young women each receives a pair of booties when she comes in for a pregnancy test. When they bring in their newly born babies, they are given a layette, she said.
"We are so proud to be a part of (this effective effort)," Howley said. To find out more about Helping Hands or to make a donation, contact Satsuma First Baptist Church (where the group meets) at 5600 Old Highway 43, Satsuma, 36572 or 251-675-1280; for information on Sav-A-Life, contact Lori Schmitz Prine at 251-675-0911.