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Archive for February, 2011

Edisto Through the Eyes of Allison Luff

Thursday, February 17th, 2011

To the photographer’s eye, Edisto Island is a cornucopia of subjects waiting to be captured and immortalized on film.

For local photographer and artist Allison Luff, it’s the beauty of the beach, plantations, historic churches, parks filled with wildlife and abundant vegetation indigenous to the South Carolina lowcountry that gets her itching to take out her camera and start capturing the unique world of Edisto.

“I get inspired by anything really,” Luff said. “An interesting pattern or item or unique architecture… and I love the play of light and shade especially.”

Luff said she’s always loved art and photography – she even majored in Art History and Art Management as an undergraduate at the College of Charleston – but now she wants to make it her life.

Fortunately for Luff, she’s spent so many years on Edisto she already has quite the portfolio of photographs highlighting much of the island.

For instance, she designed the website for Tours of Edisto and in exchange she was able to go on the tour of Edisto’s historic plantations, cemeteries, and churches. That opportunity gave Luff the chance to shoot multiple photos of some of Edisto’s most sought-after destinations like Cassina Pointe, Middleton Plantation, Seaside Plantation, and the cemetery at the Presbyterian church.

“Besides the sheer loveliness of photography,” Luff said, “I love what it conveys about history that you can’t just read; its ability to capture a moment in a way that nothing else can. I love that studying art can teach kids to look at other things in different ways; that it’s open to interpretation.”

Luff is available to take photos of all kinds of events from family reunions to weddings to just about anything. As a dog-lover, she said she would also love to take pictures of dogs playing on the beach or in any scenario for pet lovers.

In addition to photography, Luff also creates her own artwork, crafts, needlework, and more.

To view Luff’s work visit her online Etsy store at http://www.etsy.com/shop/boredincharleston or contact her at Allison.luff@gmail.com.

Clothes Closet Provides Families Affordable Clothing for all Seasons

Saturday, February 12th, 2011

The Edisto community is nothing if not generous. Anyone going hungry can get an allotment of food from the food pantry at the Presbyterian church on the island; and any man, woman, or child in need of clothes will be outfitted by the Clothes Closet.

Four years ago, the Methodist church on the island opened the Clothes Closet. It’s a place where community members (and vacationers) can donate used clothing, linens, shoes, belts, purses, coats, and almost anything else you’d find in your own closet as long as the items are in good condition and clean. Anything that doesn’t meet the standards of the Clothes Closet will be sent on to the local Goodwill store as nothing donated is thrown away, according to volunteer Nancie Green.

The Clothes Closet also provides a place for families to go to find affordable clothing for all seasons. Nothing in the store is more than $10 and the average price is $1.50. All proceeds made go to helping others in need.

In the four years the Clothes Closet has been open it’s brought in $28,492.50. The money is used to help residents of Edisto Island when they face economic hardships and are unable to pay some of their most basic bills. In addition, the funds are used so that every Christmas four families in need are given gifts for each member of the household.

The Clothes Closet is open every Monday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and then from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. The Clothes Closet is located at 8193 Palmetto Road on the island.

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library Coming to Edisto Island

Friday, February 4th, 2011

When most people think of country star Dolly Parton two things come to mind – but there’s more to the star than her infamous global endowments.

The rural Tennessee native used her fame as a platform to bring literacy to thousands of children in need throughout the country. The program is called Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library and it’s coming to Edisto Island.

The program’s objective is to improve literacy by mailing free books to registered children and encouraging their parents to read the books to their children. Registered children ages birth to age five will receive a free book once a month every month of the year for five years (if registered at birth, if not, children will receive one book a month every month throughout age five).

Edisto Island has approximately 90 preschool children and it is estimated that 70-80% of those children will be registered for the program. To sustain the Dolly Parton Imagination Library, the community will need to generate $2,250 per year.

For just $33 per child per year, a new book will arrive in the mail and open up a new world to the child who hears the story. A donation of $165 will buy books monthly for five years for one child. Additional donations of any amount will also be accepted to ensure the program continues for years to come.

In addition to contributions from individuals, businesses and foundations are encouraged to donate. The logos of the top businesses and foundations to sponsor the program will be displayed on the registration brochures and other materials distributed in the community.

It is hoped that this program will facilitate better educations for these children as reading is the cornerstone to learning. Evaluations of the program to date have shown that parents read to their children more when they are participants of the Dolly Parton Imagination Library than they did prior to joining. In addition, results have shown that the program starts an early interest in books, excitement about reading, increased time looking at and playing with books, and improved learning attributes when they reach school.

This program also helps to ready children for elementary school so they have a better chance of succeeding in their academic careers.

According to a report released by South Carolina Kids Count that was developed with the state Education Oversight Committee and the Department of Education, children that are not exposed to print and interactive dialogue are significantly behind their peers when it comes to language skills and reading readiness.

Programs like the Dolly Parton Imagination Library encourage low literacy families to implement good reading habits with their children from soon after the child is born that will hopefully maintain throughout life.

By starting with literacy programs at birth, children and their parents are introduced to the importance of reading and how it can open doors to a world they never knew existed.

The program will begin in August for children living on Edisto Island.

To get involved with this program to help Edisto Island’s children contact Marilyn Bowman at (843) 603-0966 or email mbowman51@hotmail.com. Also visit http://palmettoproject.org/begin2.htm to donate online.

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