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These local moms are on the frontlines in the truest sense of the word. Click here for their stories.

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There are plenty of activities available this summer for kids, ranging from sports to the arts to academics and more. They include:

A slew of new books authored by local writes have been published recently. Here are some of them:

0410_chessThe first time Gregory Kaidanov met the girl who would become the strongest female player in the history of chess, he was a 20-year-old chess master and Judit Polgar was a 6-year-old prodigy who on a trip to Moscow with her parents.
They were already two players the chess world would keep its eyes on for decades to come. What the chess world keeps its eyes on apparently sometimes slips right past the rest of us. Many years later, the two crossed paths again in a suite at the Hilton Head Marriot Resort and Spa for a no-frills match in front of a small crowd that might not look like much to the average outsider.

mvp_0310It’d be easy to make the argument that these Bluffton Township firefighters deserve the coveted title of Hilton Head Monthly’s Most Valuable Person just for the job they do … you know with all of that rescuing people from burning buildings and such.

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1. What are the names of the members of the Irish rock band U2?
A) Bono, The Edge, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen Jr.
B) Larry, Moe & Curly
C) Bono and Cher
D) Peter, Paul & Mary

Hilton Head Monthly

Monthly goes green in March with tips, stories and more on being environmentally friendly. In keeping with the "green" theme, we also have the scoop on St. Patrick's Day events.

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We can all do our part when it comes to going “green.” Click here for  tips on recycling and reducing.

From Singapore to Sydney: A diary of a cruise

The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.
- St. Augustine

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Gwendolyn Ste. Marie and her husband, Chet Williams, stand outside the Sydney Opera House and Harbor Bridge.

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Raffles Hotel, Singapore

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Regent Seven Seas Mariner

Passports packed. Australian visas verified. All aboard!
To celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary, my husband and I booked an all-inclusive fare, 17-day Asia Pacific Cruise aboard Regent Seven Seas’ Mariner. The Singapore to Sydney trip through 3 countries began with an over-night stay at Raffles in one of Asia’s most storied hostelries.

Walt Disney, Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein, Winston Churchill and Whoopie Goldberg have two things in common. First, they all suffered from learning disabilities. Second, their photos line a wall in The Learning Center on Hilton Head Island, serving as inspiration to the students there.

The inspiration for the center came from Malcolm Goodridge of Beaufort, who overcame dyslexia and ultimately had a successful career starting at Citibank and ending with 25 years at American Express. Goodridge, along with Magic Johnson, Cher and former New Jersey Gov. Thomas Kean received national recognition from the Lab School of Washington, D.C., in 1988 for overcoming dyslexia.

Goodridge said it was his dyslexia that afforded him the opportunity to develop additional skills, such as persistence, perseverance, organization and self-discipline. Those skills have benefited him all of his adult life, he said,  and contributed to his self-confidence and success. He hopes The Learning Center will be a place that helps many other students develop those skills.

Programs at The Learning Center are designed to provide specialized instruction to college-bound students with “learning differences,” a term Goodridge prefers to “learning disabilities.” The mission of The Learning Center is to transform students with learning differences into confident, self-directed learners, both in and beyond the classroom. Those students are referred to The Learning Center by their schools.

"The Learning Center makes it fun to learn," said Allison Blake, a seventh-grade student. "I used to have a hard time reading, especially long words, but now it's so much easier for me, and reading is fun. I know the work in middle and upper school will get harder, and I also know I'm learning good strategies that will help me as I keep moving up."

According to the National Institutes of Health, 15 percent of the U.S. population, or one in seven Americans, has some type of learning difference. The school population is no exception. The Learning Center, which held its grand opening on Nov. 5, is currently serving about eight to 10 students and officials there expect those numbers will rise to at least 50 in the next three years.

Goodridge is working closely with Herb Gray, chairman of Beaufort Academy, a college preparatory school, and Randy Wall, headmaster of Beaufort Academy.

The center has also received support from the Beaufort County School District and the Beaufort County community. In two-and-a-half years, fundraising efforts yielded approximately $778,000 from about 185 people or organizations. The center is privately supported and has an endowment of $280,000 to award scholarships.
Goodridge has high hopes for the future of the center and its students.

“I have learned that being dyslexic is my greatest asset,” he said. “It’s important to remember that it’s not how far you fall, but how high you bounce in life that matters most.”

For more information about The Learning Center, call Susan DiFabio at 843-524-3393.