SC Features

Coming Home to Conway after the Flood

Oct 5, 2018
Bill and Diane Parker sit outside their flood ravaged home in Conway.
Victoria Hansen

Two weeks after the president visited their neighborhood in Conway, Bill and Diane Parker sit on a sofa in their front yard, surrounded by furniture.  They’ve just come home for the first time since Hurricane Florence’s flood waters ravaged their Sherwood community, east of downtown.  The damage is worse than they imagined.

“I would lie in bed at night and think about each room,” Diane Parker said.  “What did I leave?  What’s there that is possibly going to be ruined”.

Saying Goodbye to Two Iconic Radio Series

Sep 26, 2018
Ray Magliozzi, the late Tom Magliozzi, and the late Marian McPartland.
Car Talk/NPR, SC Public Radio

This month two of the longest running, most iconic public radio series end their runs on South Carolina Public Radio: Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz and Car Talk.

There are more than 400 different license plate designs for autos in South Carolina.  They range from the standard "While I Breathe I Hope" tags to include colleges, veterans, Parrotheads and vanity plates like this one.
Tut Underwood/SC Public Radio

Most, if not all, states offer a variety of license tags for automobiles. South Carolina offers more than 400, many to support causes or organizations, from colleges to gold star families, or wildlife and habitats, from trees to turkeys and elk. Some are offered out of support and respect, such as veterans or POWs. Some are more whimsical features of South Carolina culture, like the shag dance, or even Parrotheads, the fanatical followers of Jimmy Buffett.

The Future of Crab Bank; A Coastal Bird Sanctuary

Jul 24, 2018
The remnants of Crab Bank at the entrance of Mount Pleasant's Shem Creek
David Quick

Chris Crolley wears a long, grey, shirt only those who work in the sun instinctively know to wear.  His blue eyes reflect some of the button-up’s hue, as he looks out beneath his worn, woven hat with a small, winged pin.  He knows what makes tourists and locals alike go “ahhh”.  He’s been giving tours of Mount Pleasant’s Shem Creek for 30 years.

USC sleep specialist Dr. Antoinette Rutherford says there's a cure for everyone who snores - it's just a matter of finding the right method for each individual.
Nick Wilkes [CC BY-NC-SA 2.0] via Flickr

Snoring can ruin the sleep of millions of South Carolinians, and it doesn’t do the snorer any good, either.  Sleep expert Dr. Robert Puchalski says vibrations in the throat cause snoring, and by the passing of air through a tight space in the upper airway, in the way that wind instruments create sound.  At least half of people snore, according to USC sleep specialist Dr.

hoto from the University of South Carolina's Motion Image Research Collection.
Photo from the University of South Carolina's Motion Image Research Collection.

At the University of South Carolina, the Moving Image Research Collection has established a reputation as one of the top film archives in the country. Curator Greg Wilsbacher says Newsfilm Collections at USC has received some notable donations over the years—including footage from the United States Marine Corps. But it all started with a donation in 1980 from the Fox Corporation, containing countless hours of newsreels and outtakes from the turn of the 20th Century.

If a black cat crosses your path on Friday the 13th - or any other day - don't worry, says USC sociology professor Barry Markovsky. There is no truth to any superstitions about Friday the 13th, black cats or any other traditional "bad luck" myths.
Pauline Havard [CC0 1.0] via Pixabay

Of the various superstitions people are subject to, one only manifests itself up to three times a year: Friday the 13th.

Students Create Computer Games and Apps at Girls Go for IT Camp

Jun 29, 2018
Instructor Jaya Gantt, a recent graduate of USC, teaches 6th-grader Kenney Williams and other students at Girls Go for I.T. camp.
Laura Hunsberger

During the last two weeks of June, the University of South Carolina's School of Earth, Ocean and Environment was home to Girls Go for I.T., a camp for middle school-age girls who are interested in learning about computer science and programming. South Carolina Public Radio's Laura Hunsberger and Clayton Sears went to USC's campus to see what the girls are creating and to talk with the professors who started the program, Dr.

The first annual Lizardman Festival and Comic Con was  held June 8-10 at the S.C. Cotton Museum in Bishopville.
Olivia Aldridge/SC Public Radio

The tale goes something like this: a young man gets a flat tire late one night in 1988 while driving near Scape Ore Swamp, and gets out of his car to change it. Then, from the shadows emerges a creature that’s green, wet, seven feet tall, with three fingers, red eyes and scales. As the young man scrambles to drive away, the creature viciously attacks his car.

Patty Lozon, Amanda Lozon, and Bill Lozon, Columbia 2016
StoryCorps

This edition of Narrative features an interview from StoryCorps, an oral history project based on the idea that the stories of everyday people are the most important and interesting of all. At the StoryCorps mobile booth in Columbia in 2016, Amanda Lozon spoke with her parents, Patty and Bill Lozon. Also her grandparents, Patty and Bill adopted Amanda and raised her from age twelve. Here, Patty and Bill tell Amanda what the experience was like.

Narrative: Turning Up All the Stones

May 9, 2018
Brooke Howard and Barbara Howard, Columbia 2016
StoryCorps

This edition of Narrative features an interview from StoryCorps, an oral history project where friends and loved ones interview each other. At the StoryCorps mobile booth in Columbia in 2016, Barbara Howard spoke with her daughter, Brooke Howard, about her late husband, James William Howard, who was a "one in a million" father to Brooke and her siblings. Here, Brooke asks her mom to share some memories from the early years in their relationship.

For conductor Suzanna Pavlovsky, keeping younger audiences engaged in the world of classical music doesn’t require a complete overhaul so much as a repackaging.

“We don’t need to change the repertoire. We don’t need to change the music itself,” Suzanna says. “But we need to come up with some sort of idea to keep the younger generations more active.”

A.T. Shire, SC Public Radio

When the celebrated maker of string instruments Antonio Stradivari put the finishing touches on the violin now known as the Ex-Nachez, Bach and Handel were barely into their toddler years and the invention of the piano was still more than a decade away. 

The rare violin has passed through the hands of many an owner and virtuoso performer since that time, but, as Yuriy Bekker of the Charleston Symphony Orchestra can attest, the instrument is still in excellent playing condition.

This house on Hassel Street in Charleston got a makeover for the popular PBS program "This Old House."
Tut Underwood/SC Public Radio

The popular series "This Old House" has been a fixture on PBS  since 1980.  It has filmed in many locations across the country, and now it has come to South Carolina.  The show recently shot the renovation of a classic single-wide home in Charleston for broadcast beginning this week.  (The series also features the renovation of a second house.)

Alicia Keys with Marian McPartland in 2003
Piano Jazz Session

This edition of Narrative features an interview by Christian McBride, host of NPR’s Jazz Night in America. He had a conversation with South Carolina Public Radio’s own Shari Hutchinson, who produced Marian McPartland’s Piano Jazz for more than 25 years.

Emily Hughes cuddles with one of the  two-to-three dozen friendly felines to be found at the cat cafe in West Columbia.  She finds hanging out with the animals a stress reliever when she can't get home to Eastover to see her own pets.
Tut Underwood/SC Public Radio

Cats are beloved pets by millions, but many people can’t have them because they live where pets aren’t allowed or are subject to other restrictions. However, over the last decade,  a national phenomenon has sprung up to help cat-less cat lovers get their feline fixes: the cat café.  Andres Ortega has opened a cat café in West Columbia, and there are similar cafes in Greenville and Charleston. 

A three-left cluster is an easy way to spot poison ivy.  Naturalist Rudy Mancke said other plants have three-leaf clusters as well, but if you encounter such a plant, the wisest course is to leave it alone.
Tut Underwood/SC Public Radio

Poison ivy is a common plant in South Carolina that can make people miserable for weeks.  Naturalist Rudy Mancke said the vine can both grow on the ground and can climb trees, which it likes to do.  The itch and rash poison ivy (and its cousins, poison oak and the rarer poison sumac) produces can last for two to four weeks, according to University of South Carolina allergist Dr. David Amrol.  He says it sometimes can be tricky to detect the rash’s source, because it doesn’t show up for at least 12 hours, and sometimes four or five days. 

USC's Maxcy College is home to students of many nations.  The International House builds lifelong bridges of friendship and understanding, and prepares many American and foreign students for international careers.
Photo courtesy International House, University of S.C.

The halls of the University of South Carolina’s Maxcy College reflect the voices not only of many students, but of many languages.  Maxcy houses the University’s International House, a living-learning experience for approximately 200 American and international students.  The students derive many benefits from life in International House, from culinary and cultural events to speakers and grant and research opportunities.  Faculty principle Dr.

The inside of David Jones' practice balls are ribbed to give them strength.  The two halves are fused together by friction.
Tut Underwood/SC Public Radio

David Jones and his son Brantley are baseball fans.  Brantley played as a youngster, and was so enthusiastic about batting practice that his older brother, who didn’t like the game, was forced by circumstance to invent a pitching machine so he wouldn’t have to pitch to his brother for hours every day.  That machine, created as a school science project when he was only 11, and Brantley just 9, became the foundation for a business. 

Massive, Seldom-Staged Bernstein Work Comes to SC

Feb 27, 2018

With musical influences as diverse as jazz, Broadway, rock, and the liturgy of the Catholic Church, Leonard Bernstein’s MASS: A Theatre Piece for Singers, Players, and Dancers is a work that demands versatility from its scores of performers. The range of music genres in Mass, along with the difficulties of coordinating the variety of performing groups for which it calls, make staging the work a seldom-pursued challenge.

Former Slave Honored at James Island's Pinckney Park

Feb 27, 2018
Friends and family unveil marker honoring Simeon Pinckney on James Island.
Victoria Hansen/SC Public Radio

James Island's Pinckney Park, with its colorful playground, iconic oak tree  and tire swing, is less than a  year old.  But its history goes back 150 years.  That's when a former slave bought the property just outside of Charleston.   It's still  thick with palms and pines that back up to a tributary of Parrot Creek.  His  name was Simeon Pinckney. 

"Most of the stories  that my mother told of him was him straightening someone out for not doing the right thing," said Jerome Harris.  He is the great- great grandson of Simeon Pinckney. 

Issaqueena Falls.
Joel Hatfield [CC BY-ND 2.0] via Flickr

The Blue Ridge Mountains of South Carolina are full of stories, both historic and legendary. The history of Clemson Blue Cheese began in Stumphouse Tunnel. The tunnel is near another popular tourist destination in Oconee County, Issaqueena Falls, named after a legendary Native American princess.

Like father, like son.

SC composer Richard Maltz thrives on linking family relationships to his passion for creating music. His son, the Vienna-based pianist Daniel Adam Maltz, isn’t so different. Daniel will give the premiere performance of his father’s piano concerto on Thursday, February 8th, at the USC Aiken Etherredge Center.  The concerto, along with Richard’s Symphony No. 2, “Fraternal,” is part of a program entitled Mostly Maltz: Classicism Revisited.

Surfboard Sledding in the Old Village of Mount Pleasant, SC.
Victoria Hansen/SC Public Radio

A winter storm brought rare snow and ice to South Carolina's Lowcountry last week. With a thaw finally in the weather forecast for the coast, and winter weather advisories in the Upstate, it's a good time to look back on the unusual--and beautiful--sights in the greater Charleston area, as captured last week by South Carolina Public Radio's Victoria Hansen.