By Elaine Pawlowski, special to Charleston Currents | I am thankful that it has been announced that more than 10 bills are filed to address the S.C. opioid epidemic. Although legislative steps are needed, I would say that the devil is in the details on whether the legislation will reduce the overdose rate.
By Joshua Hatter, special to Charleston Currents | When most people think of Charleston, they think of it as one of the best “new” places to go visit (or move to!) with historical architecture, friendly people, delicious cuisine and beautiful beaches. And while tourism has become a booming industry for the city and the surrounding region, most people don’t realize that the statewide economic impact of defense spending of $19.3 billion now exceeds tourism spending in South Carolina of $19.1 billion.
That statistic may come as a surprise, but I can guarantee everyone has heard about some part of Charleston’s long and rich military history – whether it was the siege of Charleston during the American Revolutionary War, the first shot of the Civil War being fired at Fort Sumter or, more recently, the U.S. Navy’s presence at the Charleston Naval Base from 1901 until its closure in 1996. That base closure in 1996 was a very visible change in the region’s operational military footprint.
Staff reports | The Gibbes Museum of Art will offer a special exhibition of works by 18th century artist and naturalist Mark Catesby titled Artist, Scientist, Explorer: Mark Catesby in the Carolinas. The show, which runs from May 12 to Sept. 27, will feature 44 watercolor paintings by the English artist, scientist and explorer from the British Royal Collection thanks to the generosity of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, according to a news release.
By Herb Frazier | An heirloom plant symposium at Magnolia Plantation and Gardens on March 11 will feature a line-up of horticulturalists, a Gullah chef and a beekeeper who will explain the importance of preserving plants, stories and recipes that have been passed through the generations.
During “What’s Old is New Again,” experts will explain the historical significance of heirloom plant varieties, the correlation between them and the cultures they preserve. Speakers will also discuss why pollinators play a key role in this preservation and how these efforts are fueling the heirloom renaissance.
By Cynthia Bledsoe, special to Charleston Currents | I’ve been a storytelling lover now for more than 40 years. What is it about stories, anyway?
As a child I loved listening to family stories: stories about how my parents met, what my father was like when he was a child, and what my brothers and sisters did before I was born. That love of stories quickly moved into a love of reading, though my love of listening never died. When I found out that there are actual storytelling festivals where professional tellers spin yarns and stories that make you tear up and laugh until your sides hurt, I was hooked and discovered I’m not alone.
Staff reports | The U.S. Navy last week released a 321-page archaeological report on the recovery of the Civil War submarine H.L. Hunley two days before the 153rd anniversary of the loss of the boat.
“H. L. Hunley Recovery Operations, A Collaborative Project of: Naval History and Heritage Command, South Carolina Hunley Commission and Friends of the Hunley,” by Robert S. Neyland, Ph.D., principal investigator and Heather Brown is a comprehensive report that covers the recovery of Hunley, from the planning stages through execution. The book can be downloaded for free through the link above on the Naval History and Heritage Command (NHHC) website.
Staff reports | SK8 Charleston, a concrete skate park to be operated by Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission, will have grand opening events March 4 and 11 at its peninsular Charleston location, 1549 Oceanic Street, which overlooks the Ashley River.
“The Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission has always looked to provide world-class facilities for the public we serve,” said CCPRC Executive Director Tom O’Rourke. “SK8 Charleston is the next in a long line of great facilities.”
“The Charleston County area has been waiting a long time for the opportunity to enjoy a facility like this. We are all as excited about the opening of this park as any facility we have opened.”
Staff reports | Students from Palmetto Scholars Academy in North Charleston are among those from eight schools in the country who will have a chance to talk this week via amateur radio with an astronaut orbiting the earth.
The International Space Station will pass over the school about 1 p.m. Feb. 10 and provide students with the opportunity to speak with astronauts for nine minutes. The school’s student body will assemble that afternoon in its gym to listen as astronauts answer student-generated questions via the school’s ham, or amateur, radio network K4PSA.
By Bradley Childs, special to Charleston Currents | We know one of the best ways to combat HIV in our community is go directly to the people most in need of our services. So, over the next 12 months, we will be expanding our HIV testing and prevention efforts into rural areas of Berkeley and Dorchester counties as well as into high-risk areas of Charleston.
To help fund the program, we received a $35,400 grant from the Roper Saint Francis Physicians Endowment, which, in a partnership with the Medical Society of South Carolina and Coastal Community Foundation, provides annual grants to nonprofit organizations for the express purpose of improving health, wellness and access for tri-county area residents.
Staff reports (with 12 photos) | Up to 3,000 participants braved chilly, rainy Saturday weather to march from city parking garages to Brittlebank Park in Charleston to show local support for a national march for women’s rights in Washington. An estimated 500,000 marched in D.C. More than a million marched is events around the world, according to media reports.
For longtime Charleston leader Linda Ketner, the local march was a phenomenal start to future organizing to get more women in public office, including those who think, “not me.”
“The people who say ‘not me’ are generally those who will be motivated not by self-aggrandizement but by justice and public service,” Ketner told Charleston Currents. “Women need to be where the decisions are being made — now largely without our voices.