A satellite image of Hurricane Irma from Sept. 11, 2017.  Photo from

TODAY’S FOCUS:  Disaster recovery is a long-term commitment

By Kelly E. Cruise, special to Charleston Currents  |  When a disaster strikes, we witness the horror nature can inflict on us.  The focus is often on the destroyed buildings, flooded streets or toppled trees. We see scared, displaced families, filling shelters and waiting in long lines for basic needs like water or food. It’s scary and we feel an urge to ‘do’ something.  Thank God we do.

by · 09/11/2017 · Comments are Disabled · Focus, Good news
FOCUS:  Preserve the Gullah showcases a past that’s under your nose

FOCUS:  Preserve the Gullah showcases a past that’s under your nose

By Asia Batey, special to Charleston Currents  |  Preserve the Gullah has been a three-year effort which all started when three North Charleston locals were introduced to the Sol Legare area, and with the help of their mentor, discovered the wealth of knowledge and history within this small, hidden community.

In 2015 in the midst of statewide flooding and the subsequent damage to the cookie-cutter subdivisions and businesses throughout Charleston, Willie Heyward, Asia Batey and Milton Tyus witnessed homes built many decades ago — by hand, mind you — barely chip a single bit.

Within the first week of moving to the area, they met families who still gardened and ate from the land.  They were taught how to dig up dandelion root and learned of its health benefits, and they discovered that lemon and lavender are perfectly functioning natural mosquito repellents.

by · 09/05/2017 · Comments are Disabled · Focus, Good news
Roosevelt departing the USS Indianapolis in Charleston on Dec. 15, 1936 following a cruise to South America.

FOCUS: Roosevelt could see Charleston’s popularity coming 80 years ago

By Andy Brack, editor and publisher  |  When Franklin Delano Roosevelt served as assistant secretary of the Navy from 1913 to 1920, he made several trips to Charleston to help “to build up, to some degree at least, this splendid Navy Yard in Charleston,” he recalled years later as president. 

These days, the shuttered Navy Yard is a beehive of private and government activity as the North Charleston industrial area continues to redevelop.  And the Navy’s presence continues to loom large with thousands of highly-trained specialists working at SPAWAR and in other facilities.

Back in 1935, Roosevelt landed in Charleston aboard the USS Houston after a fishing vacation in the Pacific and Caribbean. 

by · 08/28/2017 · Comments are Disabled · Focus, Good news
By Detroit Publishing Company [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

FOCUS:  Charleston has common-sense approach to historical statues

By Robert S. Carr, special to Charleston Currents  |  George Santayana,  a Spanish philosopher, essayist, poet and novelist, is probably best known for his often proclaimed and lampooned quote, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”  If that thought is accurate, what does it say about the future of those who tear down monuments to the past?

Mayor John Tecklenburg of Charleston has the right idea.  Instead of tearing down monuments that may offend some, he is quoted as saying in The Post and Courier:  “The whole story of our history needs to be told. I intend to be complete and truthful about our history and add context and add to the story instead of taking away.” 

by · 08/21/2017 · 1 comment · Focus, Good news
FOCUS:  Let’s clean up our state and become litter-free

FOCUS:  Let’s clean up our state and become litter-free

By Sarah Lyles and Mallory Biering, special to Statehouse Report  |  Litter is a passionate subject. Either one is vehemently against it or one is decidedly apathetic.

Whichever side you lean on, it can’t be denied.  Litter affects all of us. While our Main Streets and interstates get cleaned regularly, our side streets and rural roads are continually treated as a travelers’ trash can. Whether litter is intentionally dumped or accidentally flies out of an unsecured or improperly covered load, it needs to be addressed in a number of ways. Ideally that timeline would involve enforcement of state or local litter laws, a citation to the guilty party, fine levied by the judge and finally pick up.

What seems to happen more often is nothing. Law enforcement is stretched thin or an agency does not consider litter a real crime.

by · 08/14/2017 · 1 comment · Focus, Good news
FOCUS:  Lots of places to watch the Aug. 21 eclipse

FOCUS:  Lots of places to watch the Aug. 21 eclipse

By Avery and Ellen Brack, special to Charleston Current  |  With a total eclipse just two weeks away, there are a lot of cool places to watch it.

College of Charleston.  NASA will be basing its national broadcast of the eclipse at the College of Charleston’s Rivers Green behind the Addlestone Library.  In the Charleston area, the eclipse will begin just after 1 p.m.  and end three hours later.  The moon will cover the sun completely for about two minutes starting at 2:46 p.m.  

Riley Park.  The city’s minor league baseball park will open at 1 p.m. so you can see the eclipse before a game against the Augusta GreenJackets that starts at 4:05 p.m.  

by · 08/07/2017 · 2 comments · Focus, Good news
GREEN:  Don’t be clueless about your insurance policy

GREEN:  Don’t be clueless about your insurance policy

By Bill Green, special to Charleston Currents  |  If you’re anything like me, then you have a box or a drawer somewhere that you store your important papers. You shove them in there; stuff you need but never actually read. The deed to your house, for example, or the lease on your car. Stuff that’s important to keep, but not what you think about on a daily basis… until something bad happens.

When the rubber meets the road? It’s usually fast. And dramatic. And it often results in your scrambling  through that same box, frantically trying to read something you never paid attention to in the first place.

Do you have any idea what’s in your homeowner’s insurance policy? Do you know what your car insurance REALLY covers?

by · 07/31/2017 · Comments are Disabled · Focus, Good news
A covered bridge along the New Hampshire and Vermont border at Lunenburg, Vermon.  It is 266 feet long.  Built in 1911.

PHOTO FOCUS:  New Hampshire’s covered bridges

By Andy Brack, editor and publisher  |  One of the joys of traveling across rural New Hampshire is finding loads of covered bridges.  In the northern part of the state just an hour or two from Canada are no less than 28 covered bridges, some dating more than 188 years old to another built just 13 years ago.

Following photos of bridges are some scenic delights from around the Granite State for you to enjoy including a picturesque farm, a 218-year-old meeting house, views from a tall mountain, a typical village green, a ramshackled barn, a nod to politics and lobsters.

by · 07/24/2017 · 2 comments · Focus, Photo Essay, Photos
FOCUS:  Tri-county must make free college aid application a priority

FOCUS:  Tri-county must make free college aid application a priority

By John C. Read, special to Charleston Currents  |  We, as a culture, don’t expect high school seniors to write a check or hand over a wad of cash to cover their college tuition.

The lucky ones have parents who do so, but most everyone else can only afford to continue their education with the help of federal grants, student loans and work-study funds. For juniors and seniors considering their future, completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is one of the first steps they should take, even if they believe college is out of reach. It’s how the government allocates financial aid, and there is far more of it available through grants and scholarships than most families realize.

by · 07/17/2017 · 1 comment · Focus, Good news
Children along the River Avon, Stratford-upon-Avon, England.

PHOTO FOCUS:  Views of jolly old England

Photos by Elizabeth Halberstadt, special to Charleston Currents  |  West Ashley resident Elizabeth Halberstadt spent the last month on an academic trip in England and Scotland.  A couple of them have book themes, which makes sense because she’s studying for a master’s of library science degree.

We thought you’d enjoy these picture postcards of life across the pond that give insights into life in a related, but different part of the world.

by · 07/10/2017 · Comments are Disabled · Focus, Photo Essay, Photos