Teachers entertain and are entertained this week

Published 12:00 am Saturday, November 23, 2013

Peeping through my Venetian blind, I admired the sasanquas, November’s signature plant, blooming in whites and pinks, over at Covington Hall. First Baptist on East Three-Notch used to have handsome hedges of them down both long sides of the church’s sanctuary, but something got “ahold” of them, leaving them in disarray.

The senior adults of First Baptist attended their monthly luncheon last Tuesday in the Fellowship Hall, decorated beautifully for Thanksgiving by Trudy Vickers, Kittye Wyatt and Betty Bass.

Gordon Vickers, director of activities for senior adults, presided.

Dwight Criggers, minister of music, worded the invocation. Dr. Fred Karthaus, preacher, prayed the benediction.

The guest speaker was Dr. Herbert Riedel, president of the Lurleen Burns Wallace Community College since January 2009.

A native of Canada, Dr. Riedel has spent 29 years in higher education.

He and his wife, Lisa, have two sons, Willie, 17, and Matthew, 13.

Riedel is conversant in five languages and holds a fourth-degree black belt in the Japanese martial art of Aikido, which he teaches at LBWCC.

Dr. Riedel spoke of the dual purposes of LBWCC, to prepare students to attend universities and to prepare students for an immediate occupation.

He described proudly the new residences on the LBWCC campus.

Most students, heading for further academic training, he said, leave LBWCC for Troy Univeristy.

Recognition of November birthdays included that of Gordon Vickers, who also hopes to celebrate his wedding anniversary with Trudy, Nov. 28, some 39 years.

The Thanksgiving buffet, prepared by Hilltop, offered turkey and dressing with gravy and cranberry sauce, green beans, sweet-potato casserole, bread, and tea.

Seen in a corner, playing dominoes before the meeting began, were Dr. Morgan Moore, Buddy Brunson, Herb Carlisle and the Portly Gentleman.

Representatives of teachers belonging to the Alabama Education Association in Conecuh, Covington, and Escambia counties (AEA District 24) met last Monday night at Reid State Technical College in Evergreen for business and a potluck supper.

Jimmy Ponds, president of both District 24 and all AEA teachers in Covington County, presided.

The invocation was worded by Joe Wingard.

The minutes were reported by Charlotte Ewing.

The treasurer’s account was given by Dianne McKenzie.

The next meeting was set for Jan. 13, 6 p.m., in Evergreen at Reid State.

The annual banquet was set for March 7 at 7 p.m. in Oakwood Lodge, Andalusia.

Senior adults of First Baptist enjoyed food and fellowship Nov. 12 at Beef O’Brady’s.

Attending were June Smith, Gordon and Trudy Vickers, Vivian Hickey, Dr. Morgan and Wilma Moore, Kittye Wyatt, Herb and Sue Carlisle, Janice Castleberry, Buddy and Betty Brunson and Joe Wingard.

Some of this group had traveled to the Dothan Civic Center on Thu., Nov. 7, and had enjoyed a wonderful time, hearing the Gaither Vocal Band. Bill Gaither himself was there. His talented group put on a very entertaining afternoon of good music, fun, and laughter.

The Baptist group left Andalusia early enough to stop at the Santa Fe Cattle Company steak house in Enterprise to enjoy a very good meal, “a lot of fun,” and fellowship. After the concert, on the way home, the Baptists found themselves approaching the Krispy Kreme donut shop. The “Hot Donut” sign just happened to be on, so they stopped and had a good snack of fresh, hot donuts.

Those who made the trip were June Smith, Kittye Wyatt, Bill Law, Billy Beech, Vivian Hickey, Elaine Reeves, Betty Bass, Trudy and Gordon Vickers, Morgan and Wilma Moore, Ziba and Pennye Anderson, R.K. and Rose Marie Price, and Neal (who drove the church bus) and Jennifer Dansby.

Campbell Rabren Johnson enjoyed his fifth birthday party Sun., Nov. 10, in Meme and Pappy Rabren’s backyard. (Meme and Pappy are Frances and Bill Rabren, his maternal grandparents.)

Several of Campbell’s little friends joined him for jumping in a “bouncy house,” lawn bowling, and breaking a Spiderman piñata, in keeping with the theme, “the Avengers.”

Campbell was dressed in an Iron Man costume.

His birthday cake was decorated with an Iron Man design. Campbell really enjoyed opening his presents.

Several Andalusians enjoyed a taste of Savannah recently while there to participate in the city’s Rock and Roll Half Marathon, an event that drew approximately 18,500 runners.

Tom Albritton, Cindy Howard, her daughter Liz Kirby of Mobile, and Tommy and Michele Gerlach made the trip; and all completed the run except Tommy, who enjoyed watching from the comfort of his hotel room.

The 13.1-mile run began at city hall and ended at Forsythe Park.

The group dined at Vic’s on the River on historic Bay Street. (During the War Between the States, General Sherman’s lesser officers used this building’s empty offices for housing and planning space. The main dining room showcases a map that was hand-drawn by Union soldiers, detailing Sherman’s march from Tennessee through Georgia. The map was originally found in 1901 during a renovation of the building. Workers were removing the old finish and noticed lines drawn on the wall. A small portion of the map was preserved, while the rest was covered due to damage and wear.)

Other highlights of the weekend included a Savannah Trolley Tour of the city’s most historic sites, a lunch, and a brunch at Goose Feathers Express Café and Bakery, highly recommended by the four who dined there. They especially recommended the Bird’s Nest, featuring a “nest” of grits, fresh salsa, poached eggs, white cheddar and a sprig of cilantro, and the grilled salmon BLT served on a homemade croissant.

The celebration of the War of l8l2 (1812 – 1815) continues.

Again, I ask that citizens of Andalusia join the Covington Historical Society and pay its annual dues of $25 to help preserve the history of our county, whether you attend meetings or not. Mail to CHS, P.O. Box 1582, Andalusia, AL 36420. Include your e-mail address if you wish to be reminded of upcoming meetings.

To commemorate the Sesquicentennial of the War Between the States, let us return to this week 150 years ago.

At Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, Edward Everett, a famous orator of his day and the main speaker, delivered a two-hour speech at the dedication of the new military cemetery.

He was followed by a two-minute speech by President Lincoln, speaking in his high, toneless voice. This later-called “Gettysburg Address” became famous over the years, although it was ignored and even ridiculed by some at the time.

Meanwhile, Federal General Grant in Tennessee planned an attack up Missionary Ridge, held by Southern General Bragg, overlooking Chattanooga, where the North was held at bay by the South.

The Federals surprised the South by unexpectedly charging up Missionary Ridge, as far as Orchard Knob, a hill between Chattanooga and Missionary Ridge, which hill they took.

For those who collect stamps, consider those associated with the War of 181 and the Sesquicentennial of “the War.”

For the 13th week the mysterian is still a mystery. The answer is part of a riddle, “Where can one park at Straughn and yet not be at Straughn?”

(Hint: it’s in plain sight along East Three-Notch.)

Birthdays this week are those of Sir William Schwenck Gilbert, an English poet of comedy, and George Eliot, an English novelist.

Gilbert wrote the librettos for some 14 operettas with music by Sir Arthur Seymour Sullivan. The team was known as Gilbert and Sullivan. Three of their comical operas are particularly popular – The Mikado, H.M.S. Pinafore, and the Pirates of Penzance (being presented this very night at Samford University).

Sullivan is also known for “The Lost Chord,” an organ solo, and “Onward, Christian Soldiers,” a marching hymn.

George Eliot is the pseudonym of Mary Ann Evans, who wrote under a man’s name because men’s novels, at the time, sold better. Perhaps her best-known novel is Silas Marner. “Everybody” used to read it in school. One day I said, “Eppie in the coal hole” to my elderly landlady. She immediately knew that I was quoting from Silas Marner. It was a novel all used to have in common.

Now, gentle reader, allow me to encourage each of us to be in his place of worship this weekend, Lord willing.

Fare thee well.