City of North Myrtle Beach to Host Softball’s “Top Gun Sports Winter World Series” in 2016

The North Myrtle Beach Chamber of Commerce Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) and City of North Myrtle Beach announced that the 2016 “Top Gun Sports Winter World Series” for youth softball players will be hosted at the North Myrtle Beach Park and Sports Complex from Oct. 2730. Games will also be played in Myrtle Beach and Georgetown parks as part of the annual Winter World Series.


The event highlights the best of youth softball and will feature an estimated 200 softball teams across five different age divisions.


Top Gun event organizers attributed their event location decision to the area’s top-rated event facilities and the collaborative efforts of the cities of North Myrtle Beach, Myrtle Beach and Georgetown, S.C.


For additional information about Play Top Gun Sports and the championship, visit


“We’ve worked very closely with Top Gun officials and organizers to ensure that North Myrtle Beach would be one of the best choices to call home to its 2016 Winter World Series event,” said Matt Gibbons, Superintendent of Sports Tourism and Athletics at the City of North Myrtle Beach. “Every day, our team members are actively pursuing groups and organizations that we can successfully provide a premium event experience for within North Myrtle Beach, and this latest pairing is a perfect example of that. We look forward to the positive economic impact and excitement the Winter World Series will bring to our area.”


“We are pleased to announce this latest partnership with the Top Gun Sports Winter World Series,” said George DuRant, Vice President of Tourism Development at the North Myrtle Beach Chamber of Commerce Convention & Visitors Bureau. “From our world-class athletic fields and new sporting facilities to our family-friendly accommodations and outdoor offerings, we are able to provide groups such as Top Gun with a quality experience that will leave participants excited to return.”


During 2015, the City of North Myrtle Beach played host to approximately 78 sporting events and tournaments with an estimated $25,051,450 economic impact, drawing 77,636 players and visitors to the area.


For more information about the City of North Myrtle Beach’s Parks and Recreation Department and the chamber, visit and


The Myrtle Beach Marathon and all associated events have relied heavily on the assistance of volunteers since the founding of the race nineteen years ago! With the city’s first and longest running major endurance event right around the corner, we need your help in assembling a team of volunteers to help participants in many fun ways.

On race weekend more than 1,000 volunteers are needed to aid participants in the following areas:

  • Race registration
  • Distribution of shirts
  • Assist in a water, food or aid station
  • Finish line assistance

MEDICAL VOLUNTEERS are needed for the 12 First Aid Stations on the course and also at the Finish Line Medical Area. Volunteers needed include:

  • Physicians
  • Physician Assistants
  • Nurse Practitioners
  • Nurses
  • EMTs and Paramedics
  • Respiratory Therapists
  • Massage Therapists

All volunteers receive a FREE volunteer t-shirt, FREE entrance, food and beverage at one of the two post race parties, and the grateful thanks of the Marathon Committee and all participants!

If you would like to volunteer on March 3rd, 4th, or 5th and help make this a memorable event for all participants:

*Non-Medical: visit the VOLUNTEER tab on the Myrtle Beach Marathon website at to sign up

*Medical: email Dr. Mark Schecker at

Race weekend includes full marathon, half marathon, marathon team relay, 5K and 1 mile fun run.

Justin Roberts to be Presented Santini Patriot Spirit Award at Beaufort International Film Festival

Former Army Chaplain and Filmmaker will receive the Santini Patriot Spirit Award for “No Greater Love”, a powerful film about honor, courage, and sacrifice in Afghanistan by the members of “No Slack”, the 101st Airborne Division, 2/327th Infantry Battalion.

12515476-santini-patriot-spirit-awardFormer U. S. Army Chaplain and Writer/Producer/Director Justin D. Roberts will be presented the Santini Patriot Spirit Award at the 10th Annual Beaufort International Film Festival being held February 10 – 14, 2016 in Beaufort, SC. The award will be presented for his film “No Greater Love”, during the festival awards ceremony on Saturday, February 13.

The “Santini” is awarded to that filmmaker whose portrayal of the American active duty military, veterans, or their families in a feature film, documentary, or short reflects the highest standards of service and sacrifice for the good of others. The award is named after Marine Corps Colonel Donald “The Great Santini” Conroy, father of Academy Award® nominated screenwriter and best-selling author Pat Conroy.

Justin graduated from the Dallas Theological Seminary with a Masters in Biblical Studies and a Masters in Media Arts and Communication. For his tour in Afghanistan that is featured in No Greater Love, he was awarded the Bronze Star and the Army Commendation Medal for Valor. He also served as the Co­-Executive Producer for The Hornet’s Nest, another military documentary, and his footage has been featured in an Emmy Award winning Nightline Memorial Day Special. He now resides with his family in Lake Charles, Louisiana. More about the film at
For more information about the 10th Annual Beaufort International Film Festival, visit The festival is produced by the Beaufort Film Society.

The Beaufort Film Society is a nonprofit, 501 (c) 3, member-supported organization, dedicated to providing the highest levels of entertainment and education to the public from all areas of the film industry.

February Events at Ingram Planetarium in Sunset Beach, NC

PlanetariumExteriorDoors open at 11:30 at Ingram Planetarium on Friday and Saturday.  Movie trailers and complete playlists for laser light and music shows are available at

Friday Shows in the Sky Theater

12:00   Dinosaur Passage to Pangaea

1:00   Tales of the Maya Skies – half-price admission

2:00   Undiscovered Worlds

3:00   Legends of the Night Sky

Saturday Shows in the Sky Theater

12:00   Accidental Astronauts – NEW!

1:00   Seven Wonders — half-price admission

2:00   Dynamic Earth

3:00   Astronaut

All feature movies are accompanied by a live star show!

Laser Light & Music Shows

Feb. 19            Laser Retro (6 pm); Laser Michael Jackson (7 pm)

Feb. 20            Laser Country (6 pm); Laser Pop (7 pm)


Special Events

Feb. 5 – 7 pm – Stars at Sunset presented by Will Snyder, Planetarium Manager – Snyder takes you on a live tour of Carolina’s night sky by identifying the stars, planets, constellations, and other celestial events visible in February.

Feb. 13 – 7 pm – Love is in the Stars presented by Will Snyder, Planetarium Manager – Feb. 14 may be Valentine’s Day, but stories of love, lust, and loss are on display every night in the stars that dance overhead. Come learn about and be entertained by the love stories that are immortalized in the constellations.

Ingram Planetarium is located at 7625 High Market Street in Sunset Beach, NC. Consider becoming a planetarium member; admission is free for members. Non-member admission (including NC sales tax) is $9 for adults, $8 for seniors (62+), $7 for children (3-12), and free for age 2 and under. For more information, call 910-575-0033 or visit

Welcome Snowbirds! Reception at Art Works

Art Works will host a “Welcome Snowbirds!” reception in the Litchfield Exchange (14329 Ocean Highway) on Saturday, Feb. 6, from 2-5 p.m. Join a score of local artists whose fine, functional and folk art in wood, glass, fabric and paint media will be on display at the gallery, plus demonstrations by Barnie Slice, painting his watercolor minis, and Garland Jones, creating memorable pastel pet portraiture.

Talk with two dozen local authors and illustrators representing historical fiction, mysteries, action thrillers, motivational works, memoirs, poetry and children’s books.

CLASS Publishing’s Brookgreen Gardens: Through the Seasons in Images and Words will also be available.

Enjoy classic jazz by the AristoCats (Lloyd Kaplan, Nat Piccirilli and Joseph Moyer) playing favorites like “Don’t Get Around Much Anymore” and “Satin Doll,” while you sample wine and cheese, punch and cookies, and coffee and chocolates. Free to look, listen, nosh and chat! For more information, call 843-235-9600 or visit

Artists exhibiting:

Terry Belanger            , Kathi Bixler, Nancy Bracken, Roger Cleveland, Gwen Coley, Millie Doud,  Zenobia Harper, Garland Jones, Sharon Knost, Barbara Linderman, Mary Helen Lowrimore, Suz Mole, Sue Schirtzinger, Cindy Valentine, Kathy Welde, Jane Woodward



Authors exhibiting:

Libby Cantrell, Pat David, Tom & Christine Doran, Nancy Lorraine Edelman, Gloria Spivey-Flecker, Bill Hancock, Sally Hare, Werner Hoppe, Anonymous (Sam) Jones, Barry Kelly, Sarah Kelly, Gary Lucas, Richard Lutman, Anne Malarich, Maureen “Moe” O’Brien, Bob O’Brien, Tibby Plants, Annie Pott, Carol Roberts, Jim Rogers, David Soma, Marsha Tennant, T. Allen Winn



Black & White With a Pop Art Exhibit Underway

Sunset River Marketplace art gallery in Calabash, NC is presenting Black & White, With a Pop, a group show, which opened Jan. 6 and runs through Feb. 6. The exhibition features 20-plus pieces, all of which are predominantly or completely black and white. “Many, such as Sterling Edwards’ acrylic work, Foundry, also have a pop of color,” gallery owner Ginny Lassiter explains. “Others are black and white, and we have provided the pop of color in the form of a piece of art glass, fabric or other artwork.” Lassiter’s acrylic art is also included in the show.

Sterling Edwards, Foundry, acrylic on canvas, 24" x 36"

Sterling Edwards, Foundry, acrylic on canvas, 24″ x 36″

In addition to Edwards and Lassiter, other featured artists include potter Raine Middleton, known for her stunning carved pieces; abstract acrylic artist Jill Hope; unique raku master Charles Chrisco; low country photographer Mark Hilliard; photographer Louis Aliotta, best known for his East coast landscapes; glass artist Scott Summerfield, recognized nationally for his brightly colored hand blown glass; wildlife wood carver Jim Comer; Brenda Butka, who works in a range of media, including for this exhibition, block printing; Karen Edgar, best known for her large, striking hand rubbed black charcoal and pastel portraits; Doug Kazantzis, black and white landscape photographer; Beth Hill, whose brightly colored farm painting provides the pop for Kami Kinnison’s black and white acrylic painting; clay artist Shandi Berls McConnell; well-known Oak Island, NC acrylic artist Ortrud Tyler; folk artist Janna Stidham; Cathy Johnson, working in charcoal; and fabric artist Mona Bendin.

Raine Middleton, carved clay platter, 18 inches

Raine Middleton, carved clay platter, 18 inches

The exhibition is a series of delightful art vignettes and surprises. “I love black and white,” says Lassiter, “especially when it’s paired with a pop of color. I know our visitors are going to enjoy this show.”


About Sunset River Marketplace

Since opening in 2002, Sunset River Marketplace has been an active supporter of performing, literary and visual arts in the area. The 10,000 square-foot gallery features work by over 200 North and South Carolina artists. Its on-site pottery studio has two kilns and three wheels for use by students. Ongoing oil, pastel and watercolor classes are also provided, in addition to workshops by nationally known artists. The gallery’s complimentary Coffee With the Authors programs feature presentations by local and regional authors. A Paint & Party series provides a fun after-work experience for those with no previous art background. The gallery’s framing department offers full-service, on-site custom frame design for artwork, family heirlooms and other memorabilia.


Sunset River Marketplace is located at 10283 Beach Drive (Hwy. 179) in the historic fishing village of Calabash, NC just north of the SC state line. Hours are Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For information about the exhibition, art classes, onsite framing or any other gallery events, call 910-575-5999 or visit the website: The gallery’s Facebook page, which is updated daily (, also lists special events, new artists and other happenings.

February Events at the Museum of Coastal Carolina in Ocean Isle, NC

The Museum of Coastal Carolina will be open from 10-3 on Fridays and Saturdays.

Feb. 5 and 19 — 10:30 — Puppet Plays for Preschoolers

Feb. 12 and 26 – 10:30 — Animal Adventures for Preschoolers

These interactive programs feature original puppet skits and animal stories especially for preschoolers. On Feb. 26, the program will be joined by therapy dogs from Canine Angels.

Fridays – 11:00 – Touch Tank Feeding — Join museum docents as they feed the live animals in the Museum’s touch tank. Learn more about the habitats and dietary requirements of some of the marine animals found off our coast.

Feb. 2 – 6 pm – The First Ladies of Ocean Isle Beach and Sunset Beach – Author Pamela Koontz moderates a panel of distinguished ladies that includes Rae Sloane Cox, Dinah Gore, and Virginia Williamson. All three of these women were instrumental in the development of Ocean Isle Beach and Sunset Beach. They will discuss what life was like on the islands in the 1950s and 1960s. A question-and-answer session will be part of the program. Museum doors open at 5 pm so that visitors can tour the museum before attending the 6 pm program.

Feb. 6 – 11:00 – Alaska Tundra on Fire!  – Join Sunset Beach resident and global warming expert Richard Hilderman as he discusses last summer’s fires in Alaska. Following a record hot May in which snow cover melted early, Alaska experienced 319 active fires at one time! Hilderman will discuss why these fires occurred and their impact on the global climate.

Feb. 13 – 11:00 – The Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) – Museum docent and birding enthusiast Kurt Hugelmeyer describes how the GBBC works and how you can participate in it. Hugelmeyer will present a slide show of local birds you can expect to see and show you how to identify and count them. A question-and-answer session will be part of the program. The worldwide GBBC is a great individual or family activity. You don’t have to be an expert to take part in it. Museum Educator Maria Knapik will assist Hugelmeyer with the program.

Feb. 20—11:00 – Mensa Game Challenges – Museum Educator Maria Knapik invites families to join her for this program that uses Mensa-style activities to teach kids (and adults) about animal classification. The focus will be on local animals: habitat, behavior, and appearance.

Feb. 27 – 11:00 – Space Racers– This series of animated educational movies introduces preschoolers to concepts about science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Space Racers recently won the 2015 Cynopsis Kids !magination Award for the Best New Preschool Series.

The Museum of Coastal Carolina is located at 21 East Second Street in Ocean Isle Beach, NC. Consider becoming a museum member; admission is free for members. Non-member admission is $9 adults, $8 seniors (62+), $7 children (3-12), and free for age 2 and under. Questions? Call the museum at 910-579-1016 or visit

Golfers From 22 States, Italy, Uruguay and Canada Will Flock to Second Annual Myrtle Beach Preseason Classic

MB-PreseasonNearly 200 golfers are preparing to descend on the Grand Strand for the second annual Myrtle Beach Preseason Classic, which has attracted players from 22 states and four countries and will be played February 1-3, 2016, on six Myrtle Beach golf courses.

A 54-hole, two-man team event, the Preseason Classic will feature a different format of play each day and players will be flighted based on their USGA handicap. Teams will play best ball in the opening round, followed by combined net team score and a Texas Scramble.

The host courses are Arrowhead Country Club, The Wizard, River Club, Blackmoor Golf Club, the Norman Course at Barefoot Resort and True Blue Golf Club.

The event’s international players will be coming from Canada, Italy and Uruguay and among the 22 states represented will be Alaska. Temperatures during the event are forecast to be in the 70s. For more information or to follow the event, go to

“We’ve got another great field for an event that is carving out a spot on the Myrtle Beach golf calendar,” said Jeff Monday, Myrtle Beach Golf Holiday’s tournament director. “With most of the country firmly in winter’s grasp, the Preseason Classic gives players a chance to escape to some of the Grand Strand’s best courses and enjoy the game they love.”

Each competitor will receive a Greg Norman pullover and $20 PGA Tour Superstore gift card upon registration, and the event will conclude with an awards luncheon after the Wednesday round.

Arrowhead Country Club is a 27-hole facility that has several holes that play along the Intracoatal Waterway. The Raymond Floyd design is renowned for it’s conditioning.

The Wizard, a links style design that offers a taste of Scotland, is one of the area’s most playable courses and it features pristine bentgrass greens. With generous fairways framed by mounds covered in native vegetation, The Wizard delivers an enjoyable experience.

Blackmoor Golf Club is the only Myrtle Beach golf course designed by Gary Player. The course is most known for the 370-yard, par 4 eighth hole that allows players to try and drive the green through a chute Player carved amongst the native pines.

A South Strand institution, River Club is one of the area’s most popular courses, highlighted by the risk-reward, par 5 18th hole that is one of the area’s best.

The Norman Course at Barefoot Resort is one of Myrtle Beach’s premier layouts, highlighted by four holes on the back nine that bring the Intracoastal into play.

True Blue, a Mike Strantz masterpiece, is ranked among America’s top 100 public courses by both Golf Magazine and Golf Channel. Everything about the course is big – fairways, greens and most of all the fun.

Gullah Celebration Opens in Hilton Head

2016 Poster

The 20th Annual Hilton Head Island Gullah Celebration will present 15 events during the month of February. Back by popular demand are the Arts Ob We People: Art Exhibition and Sale, Arts, Crafts and Food Expo, Sweetheart Ball featuring Deas Guyz and Gullah Music Series featuring the G.A. Mass Choir. Additional highlights of the 20th Annual Gullah Celebration include the introduction of the Community Wellness Initiative that kicks off at the Fish Haul Creek 5K Run/Walk and the national observation of Freedom Day which commemorates President Lincoln’s signing of the US Constitution’s 13th amendment which outlawed slavery, immediately following the Ol’ Fashioned Gullah Breakfast. Debuting this festival season is the National Gullah Institute, which will present its first panel discussion on the American South’s Connection to West Africa on Sunday, February 28th.


Details about all events presented during the 20th Annual Hilton Head Island Gullah Celebration are available at or using this link: .


Annual History and Heritage Showcase of Food, Custom Crafts and Visual Arts

The Town of Hilton Head  issued a proclamation that February 2016 is officially Hilton Head Island Gullah Celebration month. The proclamation was issued in honor of the Gullah Celebration’s 20th anniversary.

The annual Gullah Celebration will be February 1 -28, 2016 at various locations throughout Hilton Head Island and Bluffton, South Carolina.
Since 1996 the Hilton Head Island Gullah Celebration has served as a cultural showcase of the Gullah people of Hilton Head Island’s history, food, custom crafts and visual arts. The Gullah culture has survived for more than 300 years and encompasses the essence of struggle, spirituality, perseverance and tradition.  The Gullah People adhere to the custom of their ancestors through the sewing of sweet grass baskets, the weaving of casting nets and preparation of traditional Gullah food.

For more information about the Hilton Head Island Gullah Celebration please visit