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Bucking millennial trend, USC sweethearts ready to say “I do”

EDITOR’S NOTE: THIS PACKAGE CONTAINS PHOTOS, AN INFOGRAPHIC AND OUTSIDE LINKS. TO VIEW AND DOWNLOAD THESE MATERIALS, VISIT THE CAROLINA  REPORTER & NEWS.

By Janelle Buniel
CAROLINA REPORTER & NEWS

University of South Carolina graduate students Elizabeth Rogers and Nick Doyle have been dating for six years, and people are already asking, “Why don’t you just get married?”

For many of their generation, it’s not that simple.

Recent polls have suggested that fewer members of the millennial generation – those born after 1980 who came of age at the turn of the new century – are getting married compared to Generation X, the generation that precedes them. A Gallup poll showed that 59 percent of millennials are single and have never married, as opposed to 16 percent of Generation X.

Read the rest of this entry »

The play’s the thing: Three SC theaters connect communities to stage with contemporary, creative works

EDITOR’S NOTE: THIS PACKAGE CONTAINS PHOTOS, AN INFOGRAPHIC AND OUTSIDE LINKS TO THE THEATERS’ SITES. TO VIEW AND DOWNLOAD THESE MATERIALS, VISIT THE CAROLINA  REPORTER & NEWS.

By Debbie Clark
CAROLINA REPORTER AND NEWS

When Jim and Kay Thigpen founded Columbia’s Trustus Theatre 33 years ago, they had the radical notion that the city was hungry for contemporary theater. They were right.

Now, Trustus and other playhouses across the state provide settings where theatergoers can settle in to be challenged, informed and sometimes shocked, into thinking of critical issues of the day.

Read the rest of this entry »

Living on Purpose: Mercy is the result of humility

Dr. William Holland

By Dr. William Holland

It’s easy to be suspicious and though it’s wrong, unfortunately it’s common to judge unfairly and display negative emotions toward others. If we could only remember that many people are going through some type of painful trial and difficulty which usually explains their unusual behavior. I am regularly involved with those who are struggling with serious problems and it changes your perspective when you know the circumstances. As Christians we are called to be a light that represents the nature of Jesus and this includes patience, mercy, long-suffering, forgiveness, and love. This is so that everyone can see Christ within us and hopefully inspire them to learn more about who He is. When we act ugly and rude, we are actually turning others away from the message of grace that we proclaim is the spiritual compass the lost world desperately needs. You have probably noticed that people around you are carefully observing your every move which by the way is having a direct impact on what they think about you and God. It’s true, how we live reveals much more about us than even what we say.

It would be wonderful if we could know what is going on within the lives of those all around us but most of the time we can hardly deal with our own problems. I published a book last year called “A lifestyle of worship” that is about developing a spiritual awareness of God’s presence and how this discernment can drastically change the way we see life. I am convinced we will not grow in our compassion for people until we draw nearer to God. It only makes sense the closer we are to Him the more concern we will have for others. When I’m focused and trying to do God’s will, I am more humble and have no desire to judge others. It’s when we are distant from Him and filled with arrogance that we gravitate toward negative and critical reactions. Rick Warren is quoted, “God’s mercy to us is the motivation for showing mercy to others. Remember, you will never be asked to forgive someone else more than God has forgiven you.”  Read the rest of this entry »

“Trump Unconcerned” by Stuart Neiman

"Trump Unconcerned" by Stuart Neiman

“Trump Unconcerned” by Stuart Neiman

“Chew Gum” from The Times and Democrat

“Chew Gum” from The Times and Democrat

“Chew Gum” from The Times and Democrat

“Upside Down” from The Times and Democrat

“Upside Down” from The Times and Democrat

“Upside Down” from The Times and Democrat

Scout’s honor: This Scoutmaster says admission of girls will strengthen youth organization and families

EDITOR’S NOTE: THIS PACKAGE CONTAINS PHOTOS, AN INFOGRAPHIC AND OUTSIDE LINKS TO SCOUTING SITES. TO VIEW AND DOWNLOAD THESE MATERIALS, VISIT THE CAROLINA  REPORTER & NEWS.

 

By Caroline Davenport
CAROLINA REPORTER & NEWS

The public’s response to the Boy Scouts of America’s decision to accept girls into its iconic Scout and Cub programs was swift and fierce, and the debate is expected to continue.

Opponents put forth a simple argument: the Boy Scouts program is for boys, and the Girl Scouts program is for girls. But the scouting organization as a whole is much broader, and not exclusive to boys only, officials said.

“The Boy Scouts of America has a larger umbrella than just ‘the Boy Scouts’,” said Columbia resident Chris Jordan, who has served in many positions within Boy Scouts of America, including Scoutmaster for 14 years. He is also the father of two Eagle Scouts. He says the only groups within the organization that aren’t already co-ed are The Boy Scouts and The Cub Scouts.

Families will be allowed to enroll both boys and girls into Cub Scouts in the 2018 program year.  In a statement Oct. 11, the non-profit organization said existing packs may choose to establish a new girl pack, establish a pack that consists of girl dens and boy dens or remain an all-boy pack.  Cub Scout dens will be single-gender — all boys or all girls.

Other Scouting groups like Explorers and Venturing have been open to boys and girls since 1971. Both the Sea and STEM Scouting programs are also co-ed.

“The shift and change taken by BSA is one that brings the whole organization together utilizing the same joining criteria for all branches of the tree,” Jordan said. Read the rest of this entry »

Martin Truex Jr. Continues NASCAR Playoff Dominance With Kansas Win

By: Hunter Thomas/TheFourthTurn.com

KANSAS CITY, Kan. – While racing with heavy hearts for the passing of Furniture Row Racing road-crew fabricator Jim Watson, Martin Truex Jr. piloted the No. 78 Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Toyota to victory on Sunday in the Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway.

Throughout the afternoon, Truex Jr. overcame a restart penalty that was assessed on lap 38 and an unscheduled green flag pit stop for a vibration to capture his seventh Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series victory of 2017. With the win, he becomes the first driver in series history to ever win both Kansas races in a season. He led 91 laps during the 267-lap NASCAR Playoff race.

“Just couldn’t believe some of the things that were happening and thought there was no way that we were going to win that race at some point,” Truex Jr. said. “That first restart violation really caught me by surprise and that hurt, but that wasn’t the last blow we had to take. There was the loose wheel we had to pit for under green and getting a lap down and being able to stay out through that last stage and get that lap back was crucial, without that, we didn’t have a shot. Then we got back mid-pack and had a couple really good restarts to get some track position and then really fought the car through that part of the race and had to make some big adjustments and I felt like at the end we got dialed in pretty good. I’m pretty happy with that.”

Kurt Busch finished second on Sunday after starting 15th in the Stewart-Haas Racing No. 41 Haas Automation/Monster Energy Ford. The runner-up finish comes as a sigh of relief for Busch. He hasn’t earned a top-five finish since Richmond in early September. Read the rest of this entry »

Living On Purpose: Fond memories with my Grandparents

Dr. William Holland

By Dr. William Holland

An older man was telling a story the other day about his grandparents and it caused me to think back to when I was a kid and the relationship I had with my mamaw and papaw. Now that I’m older, I realize that grandparents look forward to spoiling their grandchildren and are usually just as excited. When I was growing up, my dad and his dad worked together in their own construction business and every so often in the summer, my papaw would take me home with him. Sometimes, I would stay for a whole week and those adventures were some of my most cherished childhood memories. On the way to the country, it was not uncommon for me to become car sick because the roads were so curvy, but hanging my head out the window did bring some relief. When we arrived, I would feel weak and my grandmother would say I looked as white as a sheet, but with her administering every remedy she could think of, it didn’t take long for me to recover. You see, I was the first child and the first grandchild, so with being the center of attention you could say I was a little spoiled. They were always squeezing me and kissing me so much that I could hardly breathe, but it’s a good feeling to know you are loved.

To a boy of seven or eight years old, houses and yards seem huge, but have you noticed when you grow up how everything seems to shrink? I drove by a few years ago and hardly recognized the place. It was so tiny and even the land which seemed like a vast plantation to me back then was actually more like five acres. As a kid, their house looked beautiful to me but it was really just an old farmhouse that my papaw had tried to patch and piece together. The front yard seemed as big as a football field and I remember one day my papaw wanted to see if he could beat me in a foot race from the driveway to the garden. I can still feel the hot summer air against my face while out of the corner of my eye I could see his bare feet flying past me. I slowed down and started laughing as I knew he was not feeling well. He had a debilitating kidney disease and I discovered later that even though he did not say anything that day, the overexertion caused him a lot of pain and we never did that again. He did it because he loved me and just wanted to play and have some fun with me. In behind the house, the yard steeply dropped off into what many people call a holler, and if you were willing to climb down a steep cliff, you would find yourself on the bank of the Kentucky river. Across the road were fields of tall grass as far as you could see sprinkled with patches of large trees and if you were real quiet sometimes you could hear them majestically sway in the wind along with the lonely sound of a cawing crow. Read the rest of this entry »

“Ain’t from here” from The Times and Democrat

"Ain't from here" from The Times and Democrat

“Ain’t from here” from The Times and Democrat

“Senate Suits” from The Times and Democrat

"Senate Suits" from The Times and Democrat

“Senate Suits” from The Times and Democrat

“Political X-Ray” from The Times and Democrat

"Political X Ray" from The Times and Democrat

“Political X-Ray” from The Times and Democrat

“Getting Dirty General” by Stuart Neiman

My Brain on NASCAR: Simply Awesome

Cathy Elliott

By Cathy Elliott

Like different types of music, conversations can have their own distinctive rhythm.

I learned this from experience. In any given verbal exchange, the moment the other person knows you have an affiliation with NASCAR – no matter how small — the same two things invariably happen.

First comes the inevitable driver question. There’s a small amount of wiggle room on this one, but ninety-nine percent of the time this blank is filled in with, “Do you know Dale Jr.?”

The next level in this two-step process has a bit more verbal Spandex, stretching to fit the speaker’s dimensions. Usually it’s a suggestion. You know it’s coming, because it’s always prefaced by the query, “You know what NASCAR needs to do?”

I don’t know that, actually, but folks don’t mind one bit offering their opinions to help me figure it out. They have informed me that NASCAR should remove all road courses from the schedule; do away with the current scoring system in favor of “the guy with the most points at the end of the season is the champion, just like the old days” system; throw all the restrictor plates into a box and sell them off for scrap metal; and ban Kyle Busch from racing. In any series. Ever.

There is something to be said for consistency. If you’re forced to address something on a regular basis, it can turn anyone, regardless of age or gender, into a Boy Scout: always prepared.

The problem with thinking that you’re “always” anything, though, is that you never really are. So a couple of days ago, when someone asked me, “You know what NASCAR needs to do?” I mentally readied my defense of road course racing and said, “Nope. Tell me.” Read the rest of this entry »

Dale Earnhardt Jr. Ran As Hard As He Could In Final Race At Talladega Superspeedway

By: Sarah Sedwick/TheFourthTurn.com

TALLADEGA, Ala. – After what he called a lucky day, Dale Earnhardt Jr. managed to avoid several accidents to finish seventh during his last race at Talladega Superspeedway, a track that has been synonymous with the Earnhardt family.

Sunday’s Alabama 500 marked the first time Earnhardt Jr., driver of Hendrick Motorsports No. 88 Mountain Dew Chevrolet, started on the pole in 35 starts at Talladega Superspeedway. During qualifying on Saturday, Earnhardt Jr. reached a top speed of 190.544, which held off Hendrick Motorsports teammate, Chase Elliott, driver of the No. 24 NAPA Chevrolet by .035 seconds.

Earnhardt Jr. has had a thriving record at Talladega Superspeedway throughout his career. In the early 2000s, he won five races, which included two in the 2002 season. Earnhardt Jr.’s total wins then rose to six in 2015, marking Talladega Superspeedway as holding the most wins of his career at a single track. He holds 12 Top-5 finishes and 17 Top-10 finishes at the track. Overall, he has led 967 total laps at Talladega Superspeedway.

“I just wanted to come in here and be considered talented, but to be great at anything was beyond my imagination,” said Earnhardt Jr. “I appreciate people’s compliments on my plate driving and the success we’ve had at all the plate races.”

Throughout Sunday’s race, Earnhardt Jr. led a total of seven laps. Earnhardt Jr. also received two penalties; one for pitting before pit road was open, right after a major wreck on lap 26, and the other for speeding while entering pit road on lap 52.

As if dealing with penalties weren’t enough, Earnhardt Jr. narrowly escaped four accidents, all in Turn 3.  Read the rest of this entry »

“Trump the fifth grader” by Stuart Neiman

“Trump the fifth grader” by Stuart Neiman

“Preachin'” from The Times and Democrat

“Preachin'” from The Times and Democrat

“Free Treasures” from The Times and Democrat

“Free Treasures” from The Times and Democrat

“Senate GOP” from The Times and Democrat

“Senate GOP” from The Times and Democrat

Living on Purpose: Learning to read our heavenly blueprint

Dr. William Holland

By Dr. William Holland

I recently spent an afternoon with a young man as he was sharing about his search for personal direction. In his attempt to discover what type of life God wants for him, he’s hoping that he will eventually find happiness and contentment. I truly respect anyone (especially a teenager) that is trying to do the right thing and willing to invest the time it takes to search until they find it. I remember a few years ago reading about another young man named Guiseppe, who was also trying to find his place in the world. His parents had come to America from Sicily and his father was from a long line of fisherman (no pun intended). His father was very proud and considered it an honor to carry on this profession and he expected all of his sons to continue just as all the generations before. The problem was that even though he wanted to please his father, the Sea and the smells of dead fish made Guiseppe nauseated. Instead of this type of work, he had a passion to play sports. Sadly, throughout his teenage years, his father was very disappointed and constantly declared Guiseppe was lazy and would grow up to be good-for- nothing. Nevertheless, in spite of the emotional hurt and pain, he continued with his vision and surprisingly ended up more successful than anyone in his family could have ever dreamed. You may have heard of him, his full name was Guiseppe Joe Dimaggio.  Read the rest of this entry »