Monthly Archives: January 2019

Happy 100!

Travel

Photos courtesy of the National Park Service

Grand Canyon National Park celebrates its centennial anniversary this month.

Every day is a good day to celebrate the majesty of the Grand Canyon. However, it becomes even more special when the national treasure is marking its 100th anniversary. On February 26, 1919, President Woodrow Wilson signed an act that established Grand Canyon National Park – three years after the creation of the National Park Service – and permanently protected and preserved the geological wonder for future generations.

To commemorate its centennial, Grand Canyon National Park has plans to hold a Founders Day celebration from 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. on Tuesday, February 26. During the free event, guests can sign a birthday card, share their favorite Grand Canyon memories at an oral history booth and have cake.

Special evening program speakers will talk about the relationship between the Grand Canyon and the park’s 11 traditionally associated Native American tribes. Other events to celebrate the centennial will be held throughout the year.

Natural Wonder
Covering more than 1.2 million acres, Grand Canyon National Park is dominated by the spectacular Grand Canyon. With distinct combinations of geologic color and erosional forms, the Grand Canyon is 277 miles long, up to 18 miles wide and a mile deep.

The twisting gorge was formed during some 6 million years of geological activity and erosion by the Colorado River, which stretches 1,450 miles from its source in the Rocky Mountains to the Gulf of California. Ongoing erosion by the seasonal and permanent rivers produce impressive waterfalls and rapids of washed-down boulders along the length of the canyon and its tributaries as well.

The river bisects the park into the South and North rims, where visitors can view the mountainous buttes, spires, mesas and temples of the canyon. As the second-most visited national park in the country, Grand Canyon welcomes more than 6 million domestic and international guests annually. The South Rim is open year-round, and the North Rim is open from mid-May until mid-October.

Each year many tourists get their first panoramic view of the Grand Canyon – considered one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World – from the lookout at Mather Point, which has an elevation of 7,120 feet. Shoshone Point, accessible by an unimproved dirt road, offers more never-ending vistas as well as accommodations for special events.

A trip to Grand Canyon would be incomplete without a hike, and the natural wonder includes easy, moderate and strenuous trails. Their distances range from 1 mile to 30.5 miles.

Considered the park’s premier hiking trail, the Bright Angel Trail covers 9.5 miles from the South Rim down to the Colorado River. It approximates a route used for millennia by the Native American tribes that have called Grand Canyon home. Access to two campsites allows hikers and backpackers to sleep on the trail overnight.

For experienced hikers, the 8.9-mile Hermit Trail, where the trailhead is accessible by shuttle bus, offers a challenging route to the Colorado River. The upper section drops almost 2,000 vertical feet in the first 2.5 miles.

There are other ways to explore Grand Canyon than by foot, however. Guided tours include bicycle, bus, van and Jeep tours of the South Rim; mule trips and guided hikes of the North and South rims; and helicopter and airplane tours.

Visitors also can take a three- to 21-day whitewater rafting excursion through Grand Canyon on the Colorado River, which has rapids ranging from class I to class V. Half- and full-day smooth-water rafting trips on calm waters in the northeastern section of the canyon are available as well.

Sitting 8,000 to 9,000 feet above sea level, the North Rim offers summer visitors a completely different experience from the South Rim. A desert oasis with lush green meadows surrounded by a mixed conifer forest sprinkled with white-barked aspen, the North Rim is more rugged and less touristy than the South Rim. Visitors might spot deer, coyotes, turkeys or mountain lions.

Desert bighorn sheep, the largest hoofed mammals in the park, roam the entire depth of the canyon. Relatively scarce along the rim, they prefer the rocky slopes and sides of the inner canyon and are likely to be found near reliable sources of water.

Mule deer, easily identifiable by their large ears, are among the most prevalent mammals on the South Rim. Elk are seen frequently around Grand Canyon Village on the South Rim.

Culture & History
Natural splendor is not the only experience Grand Canyon has to offer, however. Park rangers share their knowledge about its nature, science, history and culture in free programs for tourists.

Manmade structures offer a glimpse into Grand Canyon’s past as well. Grand Canyon Village – the most popular entryway into the park – offers lodging options, historical sights and spectacular views.

The Grand Canyon Railway Depot, which brings Grand Canyon Railway passengers to the park, offers a trip back in time on restored rail cars with musicians and cowboy characters. Out the windows, the terrain changes from high desert to prairie to pine.

El Tovar Hotel, located on the South Rim, opened in 1905 and was renovated in 2005. Luminaries such as Theodore Roosevelt, who is credited with preserving Grand Canyon as a game reserve and a national monument, Albert Einstein and Western author Zane Grey have stayed at the grand hotel, which is a Registered National Historic Landmark. Lodging should be booked well in advance, but availability is more likely in the winter.

Directly across from El Tovar, the Hopi House is built like a Hopi pueblo. The sandstone walls are reddish in color, and tiny windows let in only a small amount of light. Most of the rooms have the typical Hopi-style ceiling of saplings, grasses and twigs with a mud coating on top, resting on peeled log beams. Corner fireplaces, small niches in the walls and a mud-plaster wall finish also are defining features.

Kolb Studio, the historic home of pioneer photographer Emery Kolb, is in the South Rim’s Historic District. Tusayan Museum, along Desert View Drive, offers a glimpse into Grand Canyon life of the Pueblo Indians some 800 years ago. Exhibits include pottery, arrowheads and household artifacts.

At Desert View Point visitors can climb to the top of the 70-foot tall Watchtower, a replica of prehistoric towers found on the Colorado Plateau, for a panoramic view that extends more than 100 miles on a clear day.Featuring a long history of human occupation, the Phantom Ranch area offers a last vestige of riparian habitat in Arizona. In some ways it has remained remarkably unchanged – still remote and still accessible only by foot, mule or river.

Whatever you decide to do in this natural wonder, however, be sure to bring a camera. For more information, visit nps.gov/grca.

By Morgan Davis

New & Improved

In The Home

The New American Home and The New American Remodel showcase the latest trends in home design and technology

No one can build a new home every year. However, anyone can keep up with the latest trends in home construction and design.

Enter the annual International Builders’ Show, which showcases the newest concepts in home design, construction and remodeling with two houses – The New American Home and The New American Remodel. This year the two homes will make their debut at the show in Las Vegas February 19-21.

They may have a hard act to follow with the two homes that were unveiled at last year’s exhibition in Orlando, Florida. The 2018 New American Home, a Mediterranean-inspired, 6,533-square-foot home in Montverde, Florida, showcased modern design elements in a structure where people still could live in comfort and style. An 80-year-old Orlando house served as The New American Remodel, which blended elements of the original design with new construction.

H is for Home
The modern Tuscan-style NAH featured clean lines, a neutral color palette and Italian flourishes. Built of stone, stucco and wood, the home also featured modern elements such as large windows and a floating interior staircase. The exterior included a Mediterranean pitch roof, deep overhangs and flat-concrete roof tiles.

With an H-shaped floorplan, the home was designed so that whole sections could shrink or expand without losing the plan’s integrity. Pocket doors and retractable glass doors throughout the house allowed spaces to be opened up for large gatherings or closed off for quiet and privacy.

The floorplan also embraced the outdoors, offering views of the swimming pool, spa and nearby lake from nearly every room. Automated and easily operable screens and glass walls protected the indoors from insects and the elements while still giving the feeling of living outdoors.

The core of the house featured an open kitchen and a great room with a covered porch that opened onto the swimming pool patio. These central rooms were surrounded by auxiliary spaces such as a home office, powder room, laundry room, mudroom, guest suite, game room and master suite with its own covered porch.

In the kitchen an eat-in peninsula was part of the main island, and the room was fully open to the dining and great rooms. Folding glass doors made it accessible to the pool area, and a large walk-in pantry was adjacent to the game room.

The master bedroom featured a rustic-looking backdrop to the bed, a stone fireplace and a retractable glass wall that opened onto a side porch. LED lights under the edges of the bed made it appear to float.

Reminiscent of ancient Roman baths, the master bath featured a free-standing tub on a mosaic floor. The glass-enclosed shower offered his-and-hers automated control settings. The bath also included his-and-hers water closets, his-and-hers walk-in closets and separate vanities.

The second story featured a trio of bedrooms, which each had full private baths; a loft with a wet bar and a coffee bar; a powder room and a second laundry room. A media room included double barns doors on one side and a glass wall to the balcony on the other.

The house even had a pair of two-car garages, including one with garage doors on each side so drivers never had to back out.

Tech-Savvy Features
LED backlighting enhanced focal points and added elements of mood lighting. A control room near one of the garages handled all of the automation for the house, which had only two light switches in the entire residence. In addition to automated lighting, the house also included automated shades as well as entertainment, temperature and security systems.

Other technological advances included premium audio, which delivered high audiophile sound quality to every room with reduced cabling and low power consumption; high-performance networking, which provided more power, increased memory and high-speed communication between all devices throughout the home; and user friendly controls, which could control nearly every gadget in the house with voice recognition, web browsing, H.264 streaming video, a built-in camera and an advanced media player.

Remodeling Charm
For last year’s New American Remodel, preserving the home’s 1930s charm, while fast-forwarding to a 21st-century lifestyle, was paramount to the project. The house not only featured renovations, however. A spacious great room, which led to an outdoor living area, and a gallery that connected to the master suite and office, were added to the home.

Subtle design elements throughout the house wove each individual space into a unified work of art. For instance, circular design patterns in the formal dining room were duplicated in other areas such as the front door moldings and the circular front window. Interior doors had a similar three-panel design.

Accented by long sight lines and striking focal points, the remodeled house showcased balance and symmetry. The gallery floor, for instance, featured an interwoven design of tile and hardwood while ceiling beams created a cross pattern that mirrored the tile-and-wood flooring pattern.

A once-cramped kitchen was relocated into an addition that adjoined the great room. The new kitchen featured double islands with ample space to cook, eat and entertain. While a hammered and polished metal hood above the stove created a dramatic focal point in the room, steel casement-style French pantry doors connected the exterior architecture with the interior design.

Designed to resemble a boutique hotel suite, the master bedroom was a relaxing retreat with blue-gray furnishings and accessories. A hand-crafted stained-glass window, featuring design elements from the light fixture, topped the window in the sitting alcove.

In the master bath, the porcelain tile on the floors and shower walls emulated Calacatta marble. Octagonal details on the trey ceiling, plumbing fixtures and cabinet hardware created a complementary geometric motif.

The décor of the remodeled home featured a neutral color palette, accented by elegant furnishings of Prussian blue velvets with splashes of teal and gray-beige tones. Gold-tone metals added warmth while the trim included driftwood finishes.

The outdoor kitchen featured cabinetry that could withstand the elements; low-maintenance, solid quartz countertops; and a chiseled granite backsplash. The versatile, hand-cut, gray-green stone, which was mined from India, was used on all of the walkways, steps, driveway and pool coping and deck.

The exterior was enhanced with new brickwork, restored ironwork and new windows. To maintain the character of the residence, the new additions mimicked the original architecture.

Tradition Meets Technology
Even though the home was built during a time of economic hardship in the nation, the remodel featured a wealth of technological advances and full-home automation that could be controlled by smartphones and tablets.

These features included structured wiring where all network connections were in a central location; closed-circuit television security, which could be operated and monitored through any secured smart device; surround sound; automated lights that could be customized to user preferences and controlled remotely from anywhere in the world; motorized shades to allow the optimum amount of light in any room; high-performance Wi-Fi network that provided communication between all devices throughout the home.

The New American Home and The New American Remodel 2019
The New American Home and The New American Remodel 2019 will be unveiled at the International Builders Show February 19-21 in Las Vegas. At the 36th annual show this year, TNAH and TNAR once again will feature the latest in building trends, products and techniques.

This year’s TNAH, a 9,028-square-foot, one-story house built in nearby Henderson, Nevada, will incorporate a wide variety of contemporary-modern elements into its design. Along with the latest technology, the home will highlight ultimate views and design, optimized energy efficiency and technological advances.

This year’s TNAR, which was built in 1950 near downtown Las Vegas, will showcase the ways that today’s industry products can be integrated in an older home to enhance its technological and energy efficiency.The design criteria for the remodel includes elements that today’s luxury homebuyer wants such as multigenerational living solutions, function and storage, ideas for entertaining and low-maintenance materials.

By Sarah James

Augusta University Medical Center

Dental Care

All of your dental care in one location.

From routine cleanings to the most complicated procedures we offer a complete scope of adult and pediatric dental services, all from one central location by dentists and dental specialists.

As a patient in Dental Associates, you will only be seen by a dentist.

Augusta University Medical Center
1120 15th Street Augusta, GA  30912

To schedule an appointment, call 706-721-2696
or visit www.augustahealth.org

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It’s a Date

LIFE + STYLE

Music lovers can court their sweethearts with musical trips over the rainbow and across the ivories.

Fans of the cinema and of concertos can click their heels together and head to the Miller Theater this month for a pair of performances by Augusta Symphony.

To celebrate with valentines of all ages, music and movie aficionados can watch a screening of The Wizard of Oz on February 14, as the symphony plays the live musical score from the film.

Music Director Dirk Meyer will lead the orchestra in Harold Arlen’s score from the movie, which is celebrating its 80th anniversary this year, as Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Man and the Cowardly Lion make their way to the Emerald City. Ticket prices range from $36 – $100.

On Saturday, February 23, the symphony will perform “Mentors” with Meyer and Alon Goldstein on piano. Goldstein’s artistic vision and innovative programming have made him a favorite with audiences and critics alike throughout the United States, Europe and Israel.

The program will include Dvořák’s Slavonic Dance No. 1, Op. 46; Schumann’s Piano Concerto and Brahms’s Symphony No. 1.

Tickets range from $22 – $67. Beginning an hour before the concert, walk-up tickets for students and military personnel will be available for purchase at the box office for $10. A student is anyone under age 16 or anyone 16 or older with a valid ID.

Both performances will begin at 7:30 p.m.

The Prophet Speaks — Van Morrison

Listen To This

The love of music, the love of legends, the love of love are all wrapped in Van Morrison’s 40th studio release, The Prophet Speaks. Packed with six originals and eight covers, the album is a jazz-infused La-Z-Boy of crooning genius that only Morrison can coin.

After a slew of bland and bitter releases in the present years, Morrison offers an assorted chocolate box of tunes that are all sweet to the ears and the soul.

Something inside Morrison has ignited his admiration for enlightenment and respect for the masters of songmanship. Being one himself, he takes numbers by legends such as John Lee Hooker, Solomon Burke and Willie Dixon and crafts pure gold.

Morrison has never sounded so on point and clear while still maintaining his signature improvisational garble and slinking swagger around lush R&B grooves. Notable tracks of greatness are the buttery “Teardrops,” rifftastic “I Love the Life I Live” and 70s-laden “Gotta Get You Off My Mind.”

Overall, The Prophet Speaks is a fantastic addition to your love mix tape and a must-have for every Morrison fan.

– Chris Rucker

Funny Business

LIFE + STYLE

Who doesn’t love to laugh? Comedian Gabriel “Fluffy” Iglesias does, and he is bringing his standup routine to Bell Auditorium on February 28.

Iglesias is one of a handful of comedians who has headlined and sold out Staples Center, Madison Square Garden and Sydney Opera House. In addition to being one of America’s most successful standup comedians, he is one of the most-watched comedians on YouTube with more than 380,000,000 views. Iglesias also has more than 14 million fans on social media.

He recently was featured in The Hollywood Reporter’s Top 40 Comedy Players of 2018 issue alongside comedy giants Jerry Seinfeld, Chris Rock and Lorne Michaels.

Currently, he is in production as the star and executive producer of the upcoming multi-cam Netflix comedy series, “Mr. Iglesias” in which he plays a good-natured public high school teacher who works at his alma mater. Premiering this year, the series will include 10 half-hour episodes. He also will star in two standup comedy specials for the network.

Iglesias entertains his audiences with (mostly) clean comedy and noncontroversial material that appeals to people of all ages and all walks of life. So, throw on a Hawaiian shirt – you know he’ll be wearing one – and head out for a healthy dose of humor.

If You Go:

What: Beyond the Fluffy Tour featuring Gabriel “Fluffy” Iglesias

When: 8 p.m. Thursday, February 28

Where: Bell Auditorium

How Much: $37 – $67

More Info: augustaentertainmentcomplex.com

The Burning Island by Hester Young

Literary Loop

Journalist Charlie Cates has always believed in facts — in what can be proved — which is why she hasn’t fully accepted the “fact” that she secretly has vivid dreams and visions of children who need her help.

After her work on a high-profile missing-child case brings unwanted fame, she reluctantly flees to the lush Big Island of Hawaii with her best friend in The Burning Island by Hester Young.

Determined to avoid her disturbing visions, Charlie begins writing what seems to be a harmless interview of a prominent volcanologist. But her hopes for a peaceful vacation are soon dashed by haunting dreams of a local girl who went missing six weeks earlier.

In order to find the missing teenager and stop a dangerous predator from striking again, Charlie is forced to embrace the gift she has always tried to conceal. Meanwhile, someone is watching her every move, and the closer Charlie gets to the truth, the more distant her chances of ever leaving the island alive.

“Intriguing characters and unanswered questions keep the story moving at an engaging pace. Those looking for solid suspense stories, especially those with psychic or supernatural elements, will enjoy this novel,” says Library Journal.

Al Kane

Resource Guide

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Al Kane (706) 829-9245

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DESIGN DELIMMAS

Resource Guide

Ginger Mahoney (Franke)
Best Interior Designer

• Interior Design & Re-Design • Paint Color & Fabric Consultations • Updates & Renovations • Personal Shopper • Home Build & Finish Selections • Custom Pillows/Window Treatments • Decor, Accessorizing & Staging • Model Homes

(706) 831-0468

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Grovetown Family Dental

Dental Care

February is all about love and passion, and you couldn’t ask for a better month to celebrate dental awareness. Just ask Dr. Julia Wheeler and her caring team at Grovetown Family Dental. They are passionate about healthcare. They love helping patients with their total dental needs and showing how a healthy mouth positively affects your entire body.

Dr. Wheeler and her team offer a complete range of dental treatments, from general dentistry and oral cancer screenings to periodontal care and cosmetic dentistry like whitening and veneers. From smiles to smile lines, they provide professional dental services along with facial products to maintain youth.

In addition, Dr. Wheeler provides emergency dental care and will never turn away a trauma case, no matter how full her schedule. 

“Dr. Wheeler goes above and beyond to help her patients,” staff members say, “and she does it with as minimal discomfort to you as possible. She never forgets you after your visit, either — she truly loves her patients and develops long-lasting relationships with each one.” From the clinical team to administration, Dr. Wheeler’s team is there to serve your needs from the moment you walk in the door until you leave. “We all have one common boss, and this is YOU, the patient,” they say. And you’re in good hands. To ensure that she stays on top of the latest clinical and scientific dental developments, Dr. Wheeler will be taking more than 400 hours of continuing education this year.

As you enjoy this Valentine’s Day, don’t forget there is a dentist and her team that would love to meet you: Dr. Julia Wheeler and her team at Grovetown Family Dental.

(706) 860-1352 | 5172 Wrightsboro Road | Grovetown | www.grovetowndental.com

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