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THE TRENDY OLD TOWN AREA IS GETTING A LITTLE BIGGER. HERE’S WHAT TO EXPECT.

Just a few months ago, the buzz among the employees at Downtown Deli was palpable. Some kind of big meeting was coming up. But no one knew what it involved, why the staff was being kept in the dark, and why they were going to the old Piggly Wiggly building, of all places.

KNOW LOCAL LAWS TO HAVE A HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY

The Fourth of July without fireworks is like Christmas without Santa Claus. And while nothing says summer fun like an evening of brightly colored sparklers, local officials say it’s best to leave the big pyrotechnics displays to the professionals. 

According to Town of Hilton Head Island staff attorney Brian Hulbert, it is legal to shoot off fireworks on the island — but you’ll need a permit from the town manager if you want to light up your display on the beach, which Hulbert said is defined as the shoreline between Fish Haul Creek Park on Hilton Head’s north end and Lands End in Sea Pines. 

Deputy Chief Joseph Manning has been promoted to police chief, according to Bluffton town manager Marc Orlando.

“Maj. Manning has demonstrated his ability to lead our police department,” Orlando said. “His unrelenting work during Hurricane Matthew, his day-to-day ability to foster and support our community policing program, along with his extensive law enforcement experience and education, make Maj. Manning a natural and obvious choice to move into the role as our next police chief.”

donfoxIn June 2017, Bluffton resident Don Foxe saw his second collection of Japanese poetry reach the top spot on an Amazon’s list of Top 100 e-Books, by category. Foxe wrote “Haiku Seishin” with Melissa Dolber Grappone of New York and fifth grade students from East Granby, Conn. The collection of exchanges between the authors and the students is a follow up to the release of “Seasons of Henka Suru,” his first collection of poems. The students used Foxe’s first book as their poetry study guide. They contacted the author, and the book that resulted is a collection of their haiku exchanges with Foxe.

The Town of Hilton Head Island has signed a “friendship pact” with Verona, Italy.

John De Cecco, president of the Italian-American Club of Hilton Head, said Verona has already approved the friendship pact. Hilton Head’s Town Council approved the resolution unanimously.

Auxiliary BlufftonAmerican Legion Auxiliary Bluffton Unit 205 is working with the town of Bluffton to build a veterans memorial park in Old Town. The park will pay tribute to veterans from all branches of service who served in all wars.

Bluffton Town Council voted in June to approve a plan to build a 365- home neighborhood on roughly 232 acres near the intersection of New Riverside Drive and Old Palmetto Bluff Roads — squarely between May River High School and the headwaters of the May River.

The planned private gated community will be built in phases, with construction starting later this year, according to town documents. A specific builder for the homes has not been identified.

The Town of Hilton Head recently launched a new website and community survey for its long-range visioning process, “Hilton Head Island — Our Future.”

The goal of “Our Future” is to ensure that residents, business owners, local institutions and all community stakeholders have a voice in future decision-making, and to provide the town with the insight needed to set intelligent, coordinated and creative future priorities. The project, running through 2017 and wrapping up in early 2018, will engage the community in a series of conversations designed to identify scenarios for the future.

In cased you missed the Lowcountry episode of “The Bachelorette” on June 19, here’s a partial list of local sites showcased. The Sonesta Resort Hilton Head Island was the backdrop to the episode’s rose ceremony--the moment when the male contestants learn if they still have a shot with this season’s bachelorette. Rachel Lindsay is a 32-year old attorney from Dallas.

Students at St. Gregory the Great Catholic School soon could be eating lunch in a new cafeteria, hosting basketball games on a new indoor court and holding meetings and studying in new spaces.

The private school, run by St. Gregory the Great Catholic Church, is planning a major expansion project that would add a new $7 million, 30,000-square-foot multipurpose building to the church campus.

After Hurricane Matthew hit the Lowcountry in October, part of Honey Horn used by the Coastal Discovery Museum was used by the Town of Hilton Head Island as a debris processing site, closing the entrance to Honey Horn off William Hilton Parkway.

The Forest Beach Owners Association is continuing to fight what it calls a “mini-hotel” — two newly built identical houses connected by a shared deck — on Hilton Head Island’s Heron Street.

The association filed a formal appeal with the Town of Hilton Head to reverse a decision by town staff to waive setback and buffer requirements for the properties. The group wants the town to rescind the waiver for the two properties and the large deck to be removed, as well as for officials to re-inspect the property for other violations and levy more “appropriate fines and penalties.”

Cameron & Cameron Custom Homes will continue to provide its signature client service and luxury homebuilding expertise following the death of the company’s well-loved founder and owner, Nathan Cameron.  Nathan died unexpectedly in his sleep at his Palmetto Bluff home June 10. “We will remember Nathan for his incredible work ethic, his unique and edgy vision, and his innate ability to make you feel like a friend or family,” said Andrea Eldred, Cameron’s Controller and Office Manager. Andrea added that all Cameron & Cameron staff members are committed to fulfilling the expectations of the homeowners for all their current and future projects.  Eric Cameron is a project manager for the company and has pledged to make his late brother’s entrepreneurial vision an ongoing legacy.

THE NEW CAMPUS ON OFFICE PARK ROAD PLANS TO OPEN BY FALL 2018

Charles Calvert has come full circle near a circle in his career in academia.

His first position was adjunct professor in 1988 for the University of South Carolina Beaufort, teaching a hotel management class. He was stationed at the old College Center on Office Park Road. Now he will soon be returning to that area near Sea Pines Circle — this time as the dean of USCB’s future hospitality management campus.

Guests gathered in mid-May at Joni Vanderslice's home to celebrate 30 years of J. Banks Design. Hurricane Matthew delayed the merriment in October, but this celebration truly captured the appreciation, blessings and the essence of giving back that are part of the J. Banks Design’s culture.   

It was musical theatre The Cypress way last month as members and staff came together to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of The Cypress. Songs like Fifty, Nifty Bottles of Medicine, There’s No Silver in My Gold, The Boomers are Coming Tomorrow and Gonna Build The Cypress highlighted the zany presentation. Written by members Marilyn Lorenz, Miki Hughes and Jean Thompson, the The Cypress Follies made light of life in the "golden years” at the Hilton Head Island retirement community.