Welcome to Weight Watchers — What I Have Learned After Beginning The Most Valuable Journey Of My Life?

Dearest Readers:

Today is Saturday, August 29, 2015. While I struggle to lose the remainder of my weight, I would like to reflect today on what I have learned after making the decision to join Weight Watchers.

In March 2011, I sat at my desk listening to the morning news while writing. Jennifer Hudson appeared in a commercial as a spokesperson for Weight Watchers. I observed how great she looked. I was envious. She mentioned she lost over 80 pounds on Weight Watchers. To say I was envious was an understatement.

That unique little voice echoed in my head. “If she can do this, so can you.”

I Googled ‘Weight Watchers’ https://welcome.weightwatchers.com/ – reading several posts, clicking on to a site, reading. Reading. JUST READING.

I was intrigued. Diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes in 2005; afraid I would need insulin injections like my husband I decided to change my lifestyle. Meeting with my doctor, we discussed my trying to get the Diabetes under control with Metformin. My doctor knows how frightened I am of injections. He encouraged me to change and shake up my lifestyle, along with my eating habits. I left his office saying to myself, “You can do this.” Little did I know how important those four words would become for me.

On that date, I chose to change my eating habits. Gone were unhealthy snacks. No junk food, especially at work. In place were healthy fruits and vegetables and healthy cooking. My doctor said he would give me one year to lower my A1C levels. Three months later, I returned to him to check my blood sugars. He noted that when I came to him three months earlier, my A1C level was over 7.0. According to his scales, I had lost 14 pounds – in three months! After lab work had returned, I was told my A1C level was 5.7! He shook my hand, saying to me — “Whatever you are doing now, let’s continue it. I rarely see any patient lower their A1C levels as quickly as you.”

After losing those 14 pounds, I struggled to lose more. Although I was eating healthy now, the pounds refused to decrease. Every three months, I went to my doctor for blood work and health check ups. I lost an additional five pounds, but I felt so alone, depressed and confused about why I could not lose any more weight.

Flash Forward to 2011:

On the date I watched the Jennifer Hudson Weight Watchers commercial, I was even more depressed about losing weight. Although I tried, nothing was working. A voice inside my head said: “Get up from this chair. Go to a Weight Watchers meeting.”

I remembered the last time I joined Weight Watchers so many years ago. The way Weight Watchers worked back then is members had to eat liver. Only one-half of a banana. Just what would I do with the other half? I had no idea. I don’t remember all of the programs at that time, but I knew it would not suit my needs since my husband refused to eat liver, and I detested it too! I remember the weigh-ins back then. Walking into the room where other members stood. A beige curtain was provided, with a scale. Stepping on the scale revealed the weight loss, or heaven forbid — a weight gain. Weigh-ins during this time were not private. I detested the weigh-ins. Snoopy people at the meeting could cast their nosey eyes at the scale, and I heard whispers — something to the effect of — “Did you see what she weighs?” How I detested these Snoopy, cruel women! I quit!

As hard as I tried to ignore the encouragement from a simple advertisement on the TV, a voice echoed to me. “Get dressed. Go to the meeting.” What was the catchy phrase I read on the website? “Confidential weigh-ins?” I was intrigued. “Just what is a confidential weigh-in?”

“Go to the meeting…” Frightening thoughts entered my head. I knew I wanted to lose more weight. The question was HOW? “I can’t,” I whispered while remembering that “I can’t actually means — I WON’T!”

Reluctantly, I dressed and drove to the meeting. I had a shopping bag in my car, deciding that IF I recognized anyone, I would place that shopping bag over my head.

Just before 10:00 am, I entered the meeting. My heart raced. My hands trembled. My palms were sweaty. “Please God, get me through this day.”

I completed the paperwork. A pleasant woman with auburn hair and a most inviting smile approached me. “Hello.” She said. “My name is Kathy. I’m your leader.”

I whispered my name, refusing to make eye contact. She gathered my papers and guided me to the ‘confidential scales.’

This should be interesting, I thought.

I stepped on the scales – more of a bathroom scale than the type most doctors use. I looked down. “Where are the numbers?” I asked. “Have I broken the scales?”

The receptionist smiled. “Only I can see the numbers. It’s Ok. You’re amongst friends.”

She wrote the number down on a booklet and handed it to me. Mortified, I got off the scales, wiping tears from my eyes. “This was official,” I whispered. “You are now a member of Weight Watchers.”

The next week I practiced and studied all the information Weight Watchers gave me. I jumped on the scales, convinced I lost about three pounds. The Weight Watchers scales revealed I had lost .06 of a pound. I screamed, gathered my things ready to stomp out of the meeting. Week One and I was a loser…not of pounds…but a loser for my life.

Kathy, the leader, rushed to my side. “Every loss is a loss,” she said. “You can do this.” Her demeanor convinced me to stay.

And so — I did.

What have I learned during this four-year journey?
1. Weight Watchers is a healthy way of life.
2. I am not alone on this journey. I have made loyal, encouraging and trusting friends. Together we can do this!
3. Weight Watchers IS a way of life – NOT A DIET…
5. Without Weight Watchers, I would continue to gain — not lose.

Over this summer, I have been on a roller coaster ride with Weight Watchers. Why? I’ve asked myself that same question. At Weight Watchers meetings, I have learned to track my food intake. However, what I haven’t learned – or practiced too well – is:
Weekends. How do I survive weekends?
Friday nights – we do karaoke. I usually have one or two drinks. Last night, I had one!
Saturday and Sundays are always a test. I think I’ve actually allowed myself just to go with the flow, eating whatever I want.

The time is now to go on record to say — I will do better. How? Portion control.
I must lose the remainder of my weight. What works so well with Weight Watchers is the points system. I have 26 points to eat daily. Lately, I haven’t practiced portion control.

When I mentioned to my leader that I was having too much trouble being on a yo-yo or a roller coaster, she gave me a nice compliment. “Just look at the inches you’ve lost. Maybe for now, you should focus on the inches and not so much on the weight.”

Good advice. My body is slimming down, and I am proud to wear the clothing I wear now. Nevertheless, I am still focused on the number on the scale, not what I see in the mirror.

Someone mentioned a beautiful quote I try to remember:
When you attend the meetings at Weight Watchers, the meetings need you. When you miss a meeting, YOU need Weight Watchers!

I suppose I should just consider that my body is changing -for the better…and I WILL continue this journey. Weight Watchers is now a part of my life. I’ve met two incredible friends at Weight Watchers. One of the ladies is a beautiful dark haired Greek woman. She is lifetime now. My other friend is a lovely, caring blonde woman riding on that roller coaster ride with me. Together we are either on a see-saw or a yo-yo. Together, we are determined to do this. After all, Weight Watchers is a valuable part of our lives now. “Yes…We can do this!”

Stay tuned for more details…Meanwhile, I must go get on the treadmill. After Labor Day, we plan to walk the Arthur Ravenel Bridge. I’m so excited!

“Yes…We CAN do this!”

Gloria Gaynor at The Calvin Gilmore Theater August 30

For Immediate Release
August 24, 2015

(843) 913-1453
Macintosh HD:Users:jgwatkins:Dropbox (GilmoreEntertainment):Logos:CalvinGilmoreTheaterLogo_LR.jpg

Editorial Note: Interview opportunities available, contact Jordan Watkins at 843-913-1453 or jwatkins@gilmoreentertainment.com. High Res Images available for download here:

Gloria Gaynor at The Calvin Gilmore Theater August 30

Gloria Gaynor will appear at The Calvin Gilmore Theater on August 30 for an exclusive concert. Gloria and her band are bringing her critically acclaimed performance to the stage with all of her biggest hits—“Never Can Say Goodbye”, “I Am What I Am”, “I Will Survive” and more. In addition to her powerhouse show, Gloria will add a local flair by inviting the Coastal Inspirational Ambassadors Gospel Choir (CIA) of Coastal Carolina University and the Socastee Singers each to perform in one special number with her.

Global superstar, World Music Award Honoree and Grammy Award winner, Gloria Gaynor, has topped the Billboard Music charts throughout her illustrious career spanning the past four decades. Her hit songs are known across the world and Gloria has performed in more than 80 countries. Gloria is also a Grammy Nominated author; an honor she received for the audio recording of her 2nd book, “We Will Survive: True Stories of Encouragement, Inspiration, and the Power of Song”. Gaynor’s famous “I Will Survive” not only became the greatest disco anthem of all time, but has also become an anthem for social survival across the world.

Gloria Gaynor will perform in Myrtle Beach for one night only, Sunday, August 30 at 6pm at The Calvin Gilmore Theater. Tickets start at $49 and are on sale now. To buy tickets call 800-843-6779, visit TheCalvinGilmoreTheater.com or visit the box office.

New Myrtle Beach Performing Arts Series

Gloria Gaynor is among many artists booked in the new Myrtle Beach Performing Arts series launched at The Calvin Gilmore Theater. The series was launched with Garrison Keillor’s performance this past January. The Theater plans to bring you musical artists, but also to add in some high profile celebrity lecturers, authors, and political figures. Possible artists include Bill Bryson, Frank Abagnail, Pat Conroy, Michael Bolton, Kevin James, Rachel Ray and various Tribute Bands.

Gilmore says, “With its burgeoning local population, the area is ready for something new in entertainment—something that brings popular culture and an intellectual edge to the forefront.”

More Information about Calvin Gilmore and Gilmore Entertainment

Gilmore Entertainment and The Calvin Gilmore Theater have long been the leader of musical variety show entertainment in the Southeast, with the classic TCO show, their new hit, Thunder and Light, and the all new retro show, Time Warp. Gilmore and his shows have been featured by USA Today, NBC Nightly News, Southern Living Magazine, Variety, and a host of other newspapers and television shows. It is the only Myrtle Beach show to receive the coveted South Carolina Governor’s Cup, as well as being voted South Carolina’s Most Outstanding Attraction. In recent years, Gilmore has performed regularly on the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, and he is designated as South Carolina’s Official Country Music Ambassador.


For further information contact:
Jordan Watkins • 843-913-1453

Civil War Reenactment Set for September 5-6 at Point Mallard Park

CONTACT: Melinda Dunn
President & CEO
Decatur-Morgan County CVB
PHONE: 256.350.2028, 800.524.6181
EMAIL: mdunn@decaturcvb.org
Civil War Reenactment Set for September 5-6 at Point Mallard Park

Decatur, Alabama (August 20, 2015) – Labor Day is quickly approaching and the North Alabama region boasts plenty of things to see and do over the long holiday weekend. On top of the list is a compelling Civil War reenactment set to take place September 5-6, 2015, at Point Mallard Park in Decatur Ala. Hosted by the 1st Alabama Cavalry Company G “Wheelers Escort”, the Battle for Decatur Civil War Reenactment commemorates the four-day battle which took place in October 1864, telling the story of Decatur’s small, but significant role in the War Between the States.

More than 200 Civil War reenactors are expected to take part in the Battle for Decatur Civil War Reenactment. The weekend event includes mock battles, Civil War relic displays and a Civil War camp with displays of authentic equipment, dress, and drills. Camps open to the public beginning at 10 a.m. with maneuvers and battles taking place at 2 p.m. The Confederate forces will repeatedly attack the Union troops in the Union fort to mimic the event that occurred at and near the Old State Bank.

The public is also invited to a Ladies’ Tea at 10 a.m. and the Military Ball at 7 p.m. on Saturday and a Church Service at 10 a.m. on Sunday. These three events are held at The Chapel located near the entrance of Point Mallard Park.

Other activities include drill and firing of mid-19th century muskets mounted cavalry patrols, cannon and a living history of daily camp life where spectators can purchase Civil War related items and visit with soldiers.

The historical reenactment represents the historic battle event that took place 151 years ago on the east side of Decatur near the Old State Bank. The City of Decatur was an important transportation site for the Confederate States of America during the Civil War due to the Memphis and Charleston’s railroad bridge crossing the Tennessee River. During the 1864 battle at Decatur, Confederate General Hood attempted to break Union supply lines at the crucial railroad crossing at Decatur. He was not successful and had to cross the river at Florence. Decatur’s involvement in this campaign and the fierce four-day battle led to the city to be known as “a hard nut to crack.”

Sponsored by the City of Decatur, Decatur/Morgan County Convention and Visitors Bureau, Morgan County Commission and Camp 580 Sons of Confederate Veterans Alabama Division, the two-day event is held at Point Mallard Park, a 750-acre municipal park providing year round recreation facilities in Decatur, Ala. Admission is free. For more information on the Battle for Decatur Civil War Reenactment, call Larry Thomson, SCV Camp 580 Adjutant, at 256.520.2906.

About The Decatur-Morgan County Convention & Visitors Bureau (DMCCVB)
The Decatur-Morgan County Convention & Visitors Bureau is a not-for-profit organization promoting tourism and economic growth in Morgan County. For information on special events and attractions in Decatur and Morgan County, contact the DMCCVB at 800.524.6181 or 256.350.2028; or visit its website at http://www.decaturcvb.org and click on the “Things to Do” link.

Labor Day Celebration to be Held at Coon Dog Cemetery


CONTACT: Janice M. Williams, President
Friends of the Coon Dog Cemetery, Inc.
PHONE: 256.412.5970
EMAIL: coondogcemetery@comcast.net

Labor Day Celebration to be Held at Coon Dog Cemetery

Tuscumbia, Ala. (August 18, 2015) – On a ridge in the Freedom Hills of Northwest Alabama, in a clearing among century-old oaks and “piney” woods, one may visit the graves of more than 300 coon hounds, all tried and true. For most of the year one hears only the peaceful sounds of nature. On Labor Day, however, the quiet is broken when folks gather for the annual Coon Dog Cemetery Labor Day Celebration. They come to have a good time and to pay tribute to the dogs and to those who loved them, especially the cemetery’s founder, Mr. Key Underwood, and the first dog buried here.

It was Labor Day, 1937, when Underwood lost his beloved canine hunting companion, Troop. Remembering the special times and the special place where Underwood had gathered with friends and other dogs to enjoy the night-time sport and its accompanying camaraderie, he decided that it was the perfect place to lay Troop to rest. The grave was dug by Key, Raymond Wheeler and Wilburn Prater. The dog, wrapped in an old cotton pick sack, was buried. Underwood chiseled his name and the date on a sandstone chimney rock. Today, this grave and its marker remain as a tribute to one man’s love of his dog. Surrounded now by others (many with colorful epitaphs) and with not one, but two, memorial monuments depicting treeing coonhounds, the site rivals human cemeteries in history and in love. The Coon Dog Memorial Cemetery is the only one of its kind in the world.

The 2015 Labor Day Celebration, set for Monday, September 7, 2015, will begin at 10 a.m. and will close at 4 p.m. No admission is charged.

According to Janice Williams, president of the Friends of the Coon Dog Cemetery, Inc., “This year’s celebration should prove to be bigger and better than ever. We welcome back the Southern Strangers to play their old-time Bluegrass music and as an added attraction this year, we will have Muscle Shoals Music Legend, Travis Wammack, and the Snake Man Band.”

L.O. Bishop will be on hand to dish up his famous barbeque. Newly designed Coon Dog Cemetery caps, tee shirts, coffee mugs and cap/lapel pins will be for sale and selected arts and crafts vendors have been invited to this year’s celebration.

“Attendance is free, but sales that day will benefit the Friends of the Coon Dog Cemetery’s fund for the preservation of the site, which is part of the Freedom Hills Wildlife Management area, protected by the State of Alabama,” stated David Isom, treasurer of Friends of the Coon Dog Cemetery, Inc. FCDC Board Member Mitchell Marks stated that the group hosts the annual Coon Dog Labor Day Celebration and serves as caretaker of the cemetery, providing grounds keeping and decorating it once a year for the celebration and burials, which require meeting certain guidelines.

The Key Underwood Coon Dog Memorial Cemetery is located at 4945 Coon Dog Cemetery Road in Cherokee, Ala. Driving Directions from Muscle Shoals / Tuscumbia follow Hwy. 72 West and turn left (south) onto AL Hwy. 247. Drive 12.8 miles and turn right (west) on Coon Dog Cemetery Road. Drive another 5 miles and the cemetery will be on the left. Parking areas will be marked and shuttle service by golf carts will be available for those needing assistance.

For additional information, call256-412-5970, email coondogcemetery@comcast.net or visit http://www.coondogcemetery.com or http://www.facebook.com/friendsofthecoondogcemetery.


Photos available upon request by sending an email to janicem.williams@comcast.net.

Thinking Of Stones…

As a child, did you ever pick up a stone just to see how they felt within your hand? Have you ever walked along the shore of a river bed looking for rocks? I found many. Sometimes the pocket of my raggedy, tattered jeans would overflow with the weight of stones. On vacations with my parents, I collected rocks, or ‘stones’ — as I prefer to call them. Rocks seem to be such a common word for them. I like to imagine how the rock formed. How many years did it take to reach the size and smoothness of this precious gem of a stone? My mother would get furious with me when she found the rocks. Many times she threw them away, just like she threw me away so many years later.

My grandfather and I would look for stones along the banks of the Chattahoochee River. When we fished along the back waters, I found stones. Some were multi-colored. Others were hardened stones formed from the Georgia red clay of the Chattahoochee River. I remember throwing stones into the water, and on one occasion, I told Papa I wanted to keep a stone. He shrugged his shoulders, refusing to understand why I felt a connection with a stone.

“It’s just a rock, you Foolish child,” he would say.

Still, I collect stones and my husband will always help me look for stones wherever we go. On my desk is a large river rock I found along the banks of Gatlinburg, TN. I suppose with a busy life I’d forgotten the significance of stones. I use this stone as a paper weight. Anything I want to protect, I place under that stone. I must remember from this day forward. Stones resemble strength…faith…and so much more. Today, I will spend a bit of time rubbing the stone I am looking at while writing this. I will thank this beautiful smooth stone for its significance and strength. On days when I am melancholic, I rub that brownish stone, just to feel its strength. The next time I visit my mother’s grave and my father’s grave I will find stones, placing one on each grave site so my parents will know I visited.

I display stones around my house. One stone reminds me of my dad and his battle to survive esophageal cancer. After his death, I placed that stone in my curio cabinet. Sometimes I reach inside, rub it and remember the strength my dad shared during his illness. Touching it takes me back to the happy times I built with my father. I remember his pride in me. His love. His faith. His courage.

How about you? Do you look for stones whenever you visit a new place? I do and will continue to do just that. Stones provide calmness, faith and strength during days when I feel DSC_0011weak and lost. Stones are a solid foundation guiding me through the appreciative, faithful life I strive to live each day of my life. Here’s a toast to life, and to Stones!

Greenville, SC “A Footprint within a Little Slice of Heaven”

Greenville, SC “A Footprint within a Little Slice of Heaven.”


Barbie Perkins-Cooper

Located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains is a jeweled ‘footprint within a little slice of heaven.’ Greenville, South Carolina is a grand city where music, wine, food, and entertainment create a tantalizing atmosphere where meeting planners and travelers may enjoy a destination that has something for everyone.

On a recent site visit to Greenville during Euphoria, I was mesmerized by the atmosphere and charm of this unique city. Some of the most incredible discoveries were the revitalization of beautiful Downtown Greenville and the beauty of Falls Park located on the Reedy River Basin. Falls Park landscapes the beautiful Liberty Bridge, a 355-foot suspension bridge overlooking the waterfalls of Downtown Greenville, SC. An easy walk-to-destination, Falls Park is located in the Historic West End, a picturesque setting for family gatherings and a delightful atmosphere to unwind while enjoying the rushing waters and bridge.

Downtown Greenville has been described as “a footprint with a little slice of heaven,” said Todd Bertka, Vice President of Sales, Greenville Convention and Visitors Bureau. Greenville has a cornucopia of amazing things to do, many within the pedestrian-friendly sidewalks of historical downtown.

Euphoria is a unique music, food, and entertainment festival held every year in September since 2006. Euphoria was founded by singer-songwriter Edwin McCain, and restaurateur Carl Sobocinski, promoting cooking demonstrations, wine seminars, live musical performances and a tantalizing selection of food tastings. Euphoria “educates, entices, enlightens, and entertains.” As a travel writer targeting hospitality, Euphoria was truly everything and more for me. I was impressed by the city, people, atmosphere and the mystical ambiance of Euphoria. The music, food, cooking demonstrations, people, celebrity chefs and so much more complimented every event at Euphoria.

Another amazing discovery in Greenville is the BMW Performance Center Ultimate Driving Machine experience. Feel the need for speed? Plan a visit to get a thrill of the BMW Ultimate Driving Experience. Looking for a place to host an unusual, thrilling meeting? The BMW Zentrum Museum has meeting and events facilities to delight and thrill your meeting audience.

A major $26-million renovation is lmost completed at the Hyatt Regency Greenville. Located on North Main Street, “Hyatt Regency Greenville has a vibrant history as a community hotel,” said Heather Meadors, Director of Community Relations, JHM Hotels. “From its inception in 1981 with the leadership of Greenville’s Mayor, Max Heller the downtown community embraced it. The public park space in the lobby was innovative and drew the community in. Today, Studio 220 does the same thing by donating the space to charities to let Greenville know that we are grateful to be a part of the community.” Studio 220 @ NOMA has 6,000-square-feet of new meeting space with beautiful hardwood floors, floor-to-ceiling windows, dropped ceilings, gallery lighting, all in an inviting setting on the corner of Beattie and Main.

I met with Todd Bertka, providing me a bird’s eye view of beautiful Downtown Greenville. We stopped at Stellar Restaurant and Wine Bar while I discovered that Greenville, SC is truly a meeting planner’s paradise. “Downtown Greenville has over 100 local restaurants, and plenty of local boutiques, galleries and everything imaginable for destination getaways and meeting planners,” said Bertka. The more I learned about Greenville, the more I wanted to extend my trip.

“Downtown Greenville offers all of the amenities of a larger city without all of the hassles,” added Meadors. “Downtown Greenville and Hyatt Regency Greenville are excellent locations for planners looking for activities for their attendees, with dine-arounds in the evening, music and shopping for all. Hyatt Regency Greenville stands out amongst the competition because of the people. Our employees are dedicated to the success of each meeting and group. Each of our employees is empowered to make guests stay an exceptional experience. We generate authentic hospitality in everything we do. Our culinary team is extremely talented, and they are constantly creating fine dining experiences in our meeting space. Our Convention Service Managers are committed to our planners, making sure they have a successful meeting.”

Among the new enhancements at Hyatt Regency are an additional 13,500-square-feet of meeting space, ROOST Restaurant with a casual, inviting atmosphere, an office space, exterior curb appeal, and a beautifully refurbished hotel lobby complete with comfortable seating, improved lighting and a water feature compliment this amazing hotel. The plaza will be renamed NOMA Square and it will be more open with a built-in permanent stage and water features with a disappearing water edge. The round bar in the lobby will be ORB™ Lounge, offering coffee drinks daily and cocktails for nightlife.

Meadors adds, “Hyatt Regency Greenville has over 34,000-square-feet of flexible meeting space. Our largest ballroom is over 14,000-square-feet with several different supporting breakout rooms. With the additional space, we are able to attract larger conferences looking for great space, larger breakout rooms and a unique atmosphere. With our newly renovated meeting space, we will have a designated meeting planner office for planners to coordinate materials and have a better presence for attendees. The layout of our hotel meeting space also makes it conducive for attendees to get from their breakout space to their general session and meal function rooms in a matter of seconds. Hyatt is always coming out with new offers throughout the year, and we are happy to provide customized pricing for groups and the needs of meeting planners.” Hyatt Regency Greenville is a three-star, three-diamond property.

Another unique setting for conventions with plenty of meeting space is the TD Convention Center, located within close proximity of Downtown Greenville. TD Convention Center is “One of the largest convention centers in the United States, featuring 60,000-square-feet of meeting space including a 30,000-square-foot ballroom, 18 meeting rooms, two outdoor venues, plus 20,000-square-feet of pre-function space, three exhibit halls with a total of 280,000-square-feet of space,” said Elizabeth Lyons, Director of Sales. A $22-million renovation was completed in 2008, which enlarged the Ballroom, and pre-function space throughout the building. “Recently upgraded in September 2012 the Center provides complimentary Wi-Fi access throughout the building.”

Debbie Motz, Executive Director of Eastern Outdoor Reps Association attests to the service received since 2001 at TD Convention Center. “Eastern Outdoor Reps Association is a not-for-profit association that services the independent and non-independent sales representatives of outdoor human powered gear.” Their meetings have been held at TD Convention Center since 2001 with three shows per year, and over 1,200 attendees. “We’re in a lot of facilities throughout the year and the TD Convention Center is by far our favorite. Everybody is so helpful it always makes us feel we are amongst friends.” TD Convention Center is involved in keeping the Green in Greenville, working to expand recycling, and using Green Seal approved environmentally safe products for cleaning. During my tour of the property, the restrooms and all meeting facilities were sparkling clean with wonderful aromas. No one would have known a large event had occurred only hours before the tour.

Once considered the “Textile Center of the South,” Greenville, South Carolina is truly a city coming of age, making it a graceful state-of-the-art community filled with history, amazing culinary cuisine, music, festivals for all to enjoy, waterfalls, recreation, museums, galleries and so much more. Make time to visit the Upcountry History Museum to get a full perspective of the footprint of Greenville that provides a delightful slice of heaven. The people are so pleasant to meet. While walking along Downtown Greenville, people spoke, men nodded and children smiled. No one seemed to be in a hurry with cell phones attached to their ears. Greenville is lively with culture, with plenty of space for meetings, events and entertainment. Home to Edwin McCain, the Greenville County Art Museum, Shoeless Joe Jackson, the Children’s Museum, Fluor Field, beautiful Downtown Greenville, South Carolina could make an amazing impression to host meetings and destination events. Describing Greenville to my friends after my visit at Euphoria, I said, “Greenville is a spicy town with much to offer. In one word, Greenville is ‘Euphoric!’”

Barbie Perkins-Cooper is a freelance writer who loves the journey and exploration of hospitality, travel, and health. She works full-time as an editorial photojournalist, publishing many articles and photographs for regional health and beauty and travel publications including Convention South Magazine. Barbie resides in Charleston, SC with her husband Phil and three precious schnauzers.

Ricky Skaggs at The Calvin Gilmore Theater August 16

High Res Images available for download here:

Ricky Skaggs at The Calvin Gilmore Theater August 16

This Sunday, August 16, Ricky Skaggs will appear with his band, Kentucky Thunder at The Calvin Gilmore Theater in An Evening of Bluegrass. The 14-time GRAMMY® Award-winner is known for putting his own stamp on the country format by fusing his bluegrass and traditional country roots with the contemporary Nashville sound. Skaggs’ amazing vocals and stunning instrumental talents made him the youngest member inducted into The Grand Ole Opry at that time. He has collected 8 CMA awards, twelve #1 hits on the country music charts, and his band Kentucky Thunder are 8-time winners of the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) “Instrumental Group of the Year” award.

Ricky Skaggs and Kentucky Thunder will be in Myrtle Beach for one night only, Sunday, August 16 at 6pm at The Calvin Gilmore Theater. Tickets start at $40 and are on sale now. To buy tickets call 800-843-6779, visit TheCalvinGilmoreTheater.com or visit the box office.

New Myrtle Beach Performing Arts Series

Ricky Skaggs is the third artist in the new Myrtle Beach Performing Arts series launched at The Calvin Gilmore Theater. The series was launched with Garrison Keillor’s performance this past January and continued with Jack Hanna in June. The Lorrie Morgan and Pam Tillis Grits and Glamour tour will be live at The Calvin Gilmore Theater on September 27. The Theater plans to bring you musical artists, but also to add in some high profile celebrity lecturers, authors, and political figures. Possible artists include Bill Bryson, Frank Abagnail, Pat Conroy, Michael Bolton, Kevin James, Rachel Ray and various musical groups.

Gilmore says, “With its burgeoning local population, the area is ready for something new in entertainment—something that brings popular culture and an intellectual edge to the forefront.”

More Information about Calvin Gilmore and Gilmore Entertainment

Gilmore Entertainment has long been the leader of musical variety show entertainment in the Southeast, with the classic TCO show (The Carolina Opry) and their newest hits, Time Warp andThunder and Light. Gilmore and his shows have been featured by USA Today, ABC Nightly News, Southern Living Magazine, Variety and a host of other newspapers and television shows. TCO is the only Myrtle Beach show to receive the coveted South Carolina Governor’s Cup, as well as being voted South Carolina’s Most Outstanding Attraction. In recent years, Gilmore has performed regularly on The Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, and he is designated as South Carolina’s Official Country Music Ambassador.

For further information contact:
Jordan Watkins • 843-913-1453