South Carolina

  “R” is for Redfern, Paul Rinaldo [1902-1927]. Aviator. During World War I Redfern worked in an aircraft company in New Jersey, but returned home after the war to graduate from Columbia High School. With several helpers he assembled an airplane and became a noted stunt pilot at air exhibitions around the Southeast. In 1927 a group of prominent Brunswick, Georgia, businessmen agreed to underwrite a flight from their town to Rio de Janeiro. On August 25th, Redfern took off and was last sighted one hundred miles south of Ciudad Bolivar—only two flying hours from northern Brazil. Rumors circulated for decades that he was alive and being held prisoner by Indians in a remote locale along the Upper Amazon River. Despite several search-and-rescue missions, Paul Rinaldo Redfern and his airplane have never been found.

Art and Craft

Mar 21, 2016
Bill Thompson
SC Book Festival

   Art and Craft presents the hand-picked fruit of Bill Thompson's three decades covering writers and writing as book review editor of Charleston, South Carolina's Post and Courier. Beginning with a foreword by Charleston novelist Josephine Humphreys, this collection is a compendium of interviews featuring some of the most distinguished novelists and nonfiction writers in America and abroad, including Tom Wolfe, Pat Conroy, Joyce Carol Oates, Rick Bragg, and Anthony Bourdain, as well as many South Carolinians.

Assessment in SC Public Schools

Mar 21, 2016

  While what's appropriate regarding student assessment is a frequently discussed topic, interesting and necessary data and insight into school effectiveness is made available to educators and other stakeholders through the state's assessment program. This topic was the subject of the February Carolina Classrooms production seen on SCETV, and the audio from that telecast is made available to our listeners this week on the podcast.

  With equal periods of sunlight and darkness, the Vernal Equinox arrives Sunday.

Cedar Waxwings
Minette Layne from Seattle, via Wikimedia Commons

A listener relates a story of prey and predator.

Northern Water Snake
Big iron, via Wikimedia Commons

  Hiking in the Smoky Mountains, a listener finds a snake, sunning on a cold day.

Rudy Mancke

An abundance of flowers are beginning to bloom, both native and non-native species.


A Gift From the Cat

Mar 16, 2016
Red Bellied Snake
Savannah River Ecology Laboratory

  The "orange" coloring on this snake helps identify the species.

  A recent survey by WalletHub, a website that helps consumers and small businesses to make better financial decisions, found South Carolina’s tax system to be the third fairest in the nation. While it’s nice to be complimented, two tax experts say the survey may be stretching a bit, and not considering certain factors. S.C. Department of Revenue Executive Director Rick Reames says the state has the highest individual income tax in the South.

Remembering Pat Conroy: a Conversation with his Family

Mar 14, 2016

Pat Conroy, the beloved author of The Great Santini, The Lords of Discipline and The Prince of Tides,  died March 4,  among his family, at home in Beaufort, S.C. He was 70 years old. He had announced his diagnosis of pancreatic cancer in early February.

In 2014, Conroy recorded two remarkable episodes of Walter Edgar's Journal, the second of which "Pat Conroy and Family - The Death of Santini"  will be rebroadcast this week.

In the spring of 1936, when it was first published, Margaret Mitchell's Gone With The Wind was an instant success. Mitchell's book won the Pulitzer Prize in 1937 and in 1939 the film adaptation won eight Academy Awards.

Now Pat Conroy, best-selling author of The Prince Of Tides, has written the introduction to a 75th anniversary commemorative reprinting of the epic American story. He tells NPR's Mary Louise Kelly that he's had a lifelong connection with the book.

Pat Conroy has always sought refuge in books. As a child growing up in a military family, Conroy learned from his mother that books could be his constant companions as the family shuttled from Marine base to Marine base.

"What I remember about her, from the very earliest time of my life, is her reading to me," Conroy tells NPR's Scott Simon. "She had a great tone, a warm style, a terrific Southern accent. She read us lots of poetry ... I can still hear her voice."

Palmetto Tree

  Earlier this year, the University of South Carolina College of Arts and Sciences’ Institute of Southern presented a series of public conversations with Dr. Walter Edgar and guest scholars: “Conversations on Colonial and Revolutionary South Carolina”. In this first conversation, Dr. Larry Rowland, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of History for the University of South Carolina Beaufort, talks with Dr. Edgar about “The Colonial Melting Pot.”

All Stations: Fri, Feb 5, 12 pm | News Stations: Sun, Feb 7, 4 pm

Future Uncertain for Garden Center Near Columbia

Dec 17, 2015
After the flood: Forest Lake Gardens in Forest Acres, near Columbia, SC, in December, 2015.
Forest Lake Garden Center

  Local farmers have been selling to the Forest Lake area for three decades or more. But flood damage and other circumstances may cause the last vendor in the area to close up shop.

    At the Forest Lake Gardens in Columbia, employees are busy trimming the extra branches from Christmas trees for customers. People come here year round for plants and peanuts, and this time of year, for fresh cut Christmas trees. When the historic flood hit the state in October, the Garden Center was hit hard.

(Originally broadcast 04/04/14) - Pat Conroy, author of The Water is WideThe Great SantiniThe Prince of TidesThe Death of Santini, joins Dr. Walter Edgar for an event celebrating the author’s life;  his work; and One Book, One Columbia’s 2014 selection, My Reading Life (Nan A. Talese, 2010). The conversation was recorded before an audience of over 2000, at Columbia’s Township Auditorium, on the evening of February 27, 2014.