Hilton Head Island Magazine and News

IT’S NOT EASY TO MAKE MATH FUN, BUT MICHELLE GORDON MAKES IT LOOK AS EASY AS PI

Do you know which side of the chicken has the most feathers?

If you do, you’re either really good at riddles, or you’re one of the lucky students in Michelle Gordon’s math class at Bluffton High School. The chicken riddle recently was her “joke of the day,” one of many ways she likes to lighten the mood when teaching a subject that many students dread.

BLUFFTON IS THRIVING, BUT GROWTH GETS MIXED REVIEWS

It’s no secret that the town of Bluffton is experiencing a growth spurt. In the late 1990s, it was a 1-mile hamlet with fewer than 800 residents. Today, it’s 54 square miles with a population estimated at more than 23,000.

Its growth is only going to continue. Bluffton is only 44% built out and, when all is said and done, its population might reach 75,000, according to town officials.

ALL SAINTS GARDEN TOUR NAMES GRANT RECIPIENTS

The 2019 All Saints Garden Tour grant recipients included Jasper Backpack Buddies (Antioch Educational Center), Backpack Buddies of Bluffton, Backpack Buddies of Hilton Head Island, St. Stephen’s UMC Outreach Food Bank, Hilton Head Safe Harbour and The Literacy Center. This fall, these charities each received their awards of $5,675 from the 2019 Garden Tour. 

The 33rd annual All Saints Episcopal Church Garden Tour is scheduled for May 16.

LOWCOUNTRY FAMILIES HAVE MANY FIRST CLASS OPTIONS FOR THEIR CHILDREN'S EDUCATION. EXPERIENCED ADMINISTRATORS, PASSIONATE TEACHERS AND MOTIVATED PEERS MAKE THE DIFFERENCE FOR STUDENTS. IN THIS SECTION WE CELEBRATE HIGH QUALITY CENTERS OF LEARNING IN BLUFFTON AND ON HILTON HEAD ISLAND. 

FIRST PRESBYTERIAN WELCOMES NEW PASTOR

On Nov. 10, First Presbyterian Church on Hilton Head Island celebrated its 62nd anniversary by welcoming a new minister, the Rev. Dr. Will Robinson. 

Robinson moved to the Lowcountry from Salem, Virginia, where he served as pastor and head of staff at Salem Presbyterian Church for 10 years. Prior to that, Robinson was an associate pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Tulsa, Oklahoma. 

AN ACCOUNTABILITY PARTNER CAN HELP YOU REACH YOUR GOALS

How often have you set a goal but never quite got around to doing anything to achieve it? Or maybe you’ve found yourself making progress, but then something got in the way and you got off track.

COMMUNITY FOUNDATION OF THE LOWCOUNTRY ADDS THREE 

Julie Jones, Jennifer Phillips and Mary Wright have joined the team at Community Foundation of the Lowcountry. 

Jones will serve as a donor services associate, providing relationship management services for donors and fund groups. Previously, she served as the assistant executive director for Bluffton Self Help for eight years. 

HIGH SCHOOL ARTIST BONDS WITH REFUGEE THROUGH PORTRAIT

If I could only capture his smile, Olivia Waters thought, I could capture the essence of Yousup — a 12-year-old Rohingya refugee confined in a camp in Bangladesh. 

“I couldn’t help but think that despite everything he had been through, despite all the things that must have been thrown at him this past year, he still looked full of joy,” said Olivia, 17, a senior at Hilton Head Island High School.

NATIVE ISLANDER HONORS TIES TO THE PAST BY MAINTAINING TINY CEMETERY

Finding time to tend to Braddock’s Point Cemetery is a no-brainer for Richard “Skeet” Williams. The grandmother who raised him, Ella Williams, lies there, as do other relatives.

“It is all about family,” he said during a tour of the tiny cemetery. “Everybody here is family. Somebody has got to keep things going because we are family.”

BACKPACK BUDDIES CELEBRATES 10 YEARS OF FEEDING STUDENTS

Janet Weingarten had only been living on Hilton Head Island for a short time before she noticed something that wasn’t listed on any of the tourism or real estate brochures.

“It’s almost a rite of passage when you move here,” she said. “You see gated communities. Then you start driving down side roads and you see a large part of the population. There are hungry families there.

PAY YOURSELF FIRST TO ACHIEVE YOUR FINANCIAL GOALS

Whether you’re planning for a hard-earned vacation or a new car, or if you want to boost your retirement and emergency funds, saving is key. 

No amount of money is too small to begin squirrelling away, said Bill Brady, managing principal at Hilton Head-based CrossRoads Financial Group. 

“Minor adjustments can lead to major improvements,” Brady said. “Are you sure you need that $5 Starbucks coffee every day?” 

BRUNO LANDSCAPE & NURSERY IS A FAMILY AFFAIR

This month Bruno Landscape & Nursery will be celebrating 30 years in business on Hilton Head Island. A small landscape business started by Gary and Mary Ann Bruno in 1989 has blossomed into a booming operation that has far exceeded their expectations. Their once young children (Steven, Jenna & Nikki), who tagged along from job site to job site, are now all working in the family business.

GET ORGANIZED IN THE NEW YEAR

Organization has become big business — just ask best-selling author and Japanese organiza-tion guru Marie Kondo. Sure, her folding methods open up space in your drawers, and pondering whether each item you own brings you joy does make it easier to decide whether to toss something, but sometimes those methods don’t work for everyone. It might be time to call in a professional.

SUN CITY TO PHASE OUT FLOOR PLANS FOR NEW 2020 DESIGNS

Sun City Hilton Head has begun construction on a new model home park that will open in early 2020. The developer’s plan is to phase out the current floor plans and introduce 10 all-new designs.

HILTON HEAD COUPLE CREATES A BEAUTIFUL GARDEN FOR THE COMMUNITY 

Fred and Donna Manske have some camellias in the garden at their Hilton Head Island home, but their true camellia craze can be found at the Camellia Garden at the Coastal Discovery Museum.

The couple created this free garden in 2009; today, it is home to 131 exotic and historic plants in a multitude of colors, sizes, origins, blooming duration and fragrances that bloom from Halloween to St. Patrick’s Day.

The 13th annual Hilton Head Bridal Show will be the premier event of the year for brides, grooms, families, and wedding parties. Come see the best vendors Hilton Head has to offer to give you the wedding of your dreams! You can taste cakes, view wedding portraits, and see the latest in bridal fashions - including bridal gowns, bridesmaid dresses, tuxedos, and suits.

2020 Hilton Head Bridal Show

Sunday, February 16, 2020 1:00PM – 4:00PM, Sonesta Resort Hilton Head

FRIENDSHIP FOLLOWED BY MARRIAGE IS A RECIPE FOR SUCCESS 

There is something to be said for marrying your best friend. Combining romance with companionship brings out the best qualities in both types of relationships. It seems couples that have this connection have it figured out — couples like Jennifer and Vinny Matalavage.

Jennifer and Vinny met in college at Penn State Hazleton, sitting next to each other in class and working together on group projects. They really connected as friends and when Vinny began looking for a roommate in 2014, he was excited to learn that Jenny had a job in the same area: “We cleared it with our parents first and then became roommates.”

OUT OF TRAGEDY COMES A SECOND CHANCE AT LOVE

The Lowcountry is a small community where lives intersect in wonderful and terrible ways. For example, take Bluffton resident Daniel Harms, who was battling cancer in the summer of 2017 when he and his wife, Holly, heard about a three-car accident on Buck Island Road that took the lives of local teacher Jesse Floyd and her unborn son, Eli.

Daniel was overcome with emotion after hearing of the tragedy. He didn’t know Floyd’s husband, Ryan, but he told Holly that he could feel his pain.