As the Carolina coast struggles to get back
on more solid footing we are celebrating our
19th consecutive December holiday issue.
N THIS ISSUE you’ll find a story I had not heard, that
of a teenage Chinese boy who arrived in Wilmington from
Boston in the 1880s, Charlie Soong. Mentored by the
Rev. Thomas Ricaud and people of Wilmington’s (then)
Fifth Avenue Methodist Episcopal Church, Soong came
to Christ, was baptized, educated at Trinity College (Duke), then
Vanderbilt before returning to mainland China as a missionary.
There he soon became a highly successful and wealthy businessman,
printing Bibles in Chinese, and managing a flourmill. He supported
and financed Sun Yat-sen the revolutionary who would lead the
overthrow of the Manchu dynasty and the birth of the Republic
of China. He would marry and father six children who would be
educated in America. While all did well, three daughters, known
as the Soong Sisters, married three of the most powerful figures in
20th century China including Generalissimo Chiang Kai-Shek, and
President Sun Yat-sen. They are among the most influential women
in Chinese history. It is an incredible and inspiring story of faith
and destiny that changed the world.
In December 2000 we featured the Cotton Blossom on East
Oxford Street. The historic home was also decorated for Christmas.
We began a tradition then and now, 217 consecutive issues later,
we are still featuring a Christmas house, actually two — the simple
but elegant home of Chris and Alisa Ward on Summer Rest Road,
and in Forest Hills, Tracy Pope’s over-the-top theme tree in every
room. Rounding out this trifecta are Allison Potter’s photographs
from Brookgreen Gardens at Murrells Inlet, South Carolina. We
are not taking anything away from our own Airlie Gardens, but for
those who enjoy a field trip, a visit to Brookgreen this time of year
Pat Bradford enjoys one of the many alternative seating venues
will not disappoint.
Add to this the story of ice hockey in Wilmington from beginner
to collegiate to pro, there is a lot going on in this town on the ice. Top it with the stories behind yummy Christmas treats, mother and
daughter artists and a collection of fall social scenes.
With it comes more change; as a result of Hurricane Florence’s landfall we chose to move. An upcoming magazine feature on shared
workspace in Wilmington was already underway, and while the idea to join innovative thinkers in where and how to work had not even
been discussed, we took the plunge. Readers should see little change; this marks the third issue completed this way, the first one by
choice. Meetings and design production collaboration now occur at tekMountain over on Sir Tyler opposite Mayfaire. The finance and
circulation office moved to Causeway Drive, where the magazine was first created. All other team members telecommute. Hello future!
Pat’s hair by Frank Potter, Bangz Hair Salon. Hair styled by Rob Asp, Bangz. Makeup by Caty Perakis, Bangz. Diamond Hoop earrings,
diamond cross, platinum and diamond Deco ring, Diamond bracelet and leather trimmed bear purse accessorizing all from Cape Fear
Jewelry & Antiqueson Oleander Drive.