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Lake Murray Columbia, Nov 2012

Lake Murray Columbia, Nov 2012


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Published by The State Newspaper
Volume 17, number 9. Our November edition, featuring radio-controlled plane hobbyists, houseboat fun and a very dedicated runner.
Volume 17, number 9. Our November edition, featuring radio-controlled plane hobbyists, houseboat fun and a very dedicated runner.

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Published by: The State Newspaper on Oct 18, 2012
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved


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{ strong and confident expectation }



Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012





Here are 26.2 things that set Mike Dhunjishah of Lake Carolina apart from the running crowd. Left, a map pinpointing the marathons he has run so far.

Steve Bienkoski searches all over South Carolina in his quest to save old wooden structures -- or the wood itself -- from the bulldozer. One neglected house now is bound for new life on the banks of Lake Murray.7.


Bill Paulis builds birdhouses now, but during World War II, he helped defeat enemies. He’s one of many veterans of the Columbia Army Air Base reuniting in Columbia this month.

{ HOME }


Joyce and Pete Boney’s houseboat on Marina Bay shows their love of the water -- and their love for the Gamecocks. All-board.



Gene Sorrel and his wife, Mary Ruth, have transformed the backyard of their 19-year-old Louisianastyle residence on Lake Murray into a year-round oasis, complete with a neverending view of the water from their pool.


ON THE COVER A group called LARKS pilots radio controlled planes at their airfield just off I-20 near Batesburg-Leesville on Tuesday afternoons. Story, Page 28. Photo by Gerry Melendez

See more photos from our stories and purchase photos published in this issue; order online at thestate.com/lakemurray.


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012


Betsey Guzior, (803) 771-8441 bguzior@thestate.com
Art dirEctor

Susan Ardis, (803) 771-8595 sardis@thestate.com
AdvErtising sAlEs dirEctor

Lauren Feldman, (803) 771-8351 lfeldman@thestate.com
subscribEr sErvicE

Hair Nails Facials Waxing Spa Packages Massage Therapy Gift Cards available Wedding parties welcome

Cynthia Burns, (803) 771-8321
stAff WritErs

Betsey Guzior, Joey Holleman, Diane Morrison
contributing WritErs

Rachel Haynie, Kay Gordon, Deena C. Bouknight
stAff PhotogrAPhErs

C. Aluka Berry, Tim Dominick, Kim Kim Foster-Tobin, Gerry Melendez

COLUMBIANA CENTRE 803-407-4383 DUTCH SQUARE MALL 803-561-0219 RICHLAND MALL 803-782-4726

The STaTe Media Co.
Henry B. Haitz III, President & Publisher Mark E. Lett, Vice President, Executive Editor Bernie Heller, Vice President, Advertising

November 2012
Lake Murray-Columbia® and Northeast Columbia® are published 12 times a year. The mail subscription rate is $48. The contents are fully protected by copyright. Lake Murray-Columbia® and Northeast Columbia are wholly owned by The State Media Co.

Send a story idea or calendar item to:
Lake Murray/Northeast magazines P.O. Box 1333 Columbia, SC 29202 Fax: (803) 771-8430 Attention: Betsey Guzior or lakemurray@thestate.com

Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012



Modern art. ‘Head,’ by Alfred Henry Maurer, part of the Modern & Contemporary Art from the Collection exhibit at Columbia Museum of Art on display
through Jan. 1


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012

{performing arts}
Through Nov. 3: “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde,” Chapin Community Theatre, Harbison Theatre, (803) 345-6181 Through Nov. 10: “Next Fall,” Trustus Theatre, (803) 254-9732 Through Dec. 29: “Hansel & Gretel,” Columbia Marionette Theatre, 252-7366 Nov. 1-18: “Murdered by the Mob,” Fine Arts Center of Forest Acres, (803) 200-2012 Nov. 2, 3: USC Dance Company, Koger Center, (803) 251-6333 Nov. 2, 3: “Don Giovanni” by W. A. Mozart (sung in Italian), Drayton Hall, (803) 777-4280 Nov. 2-18: “Disney’s The Little Mermaid Jr.,” Village Square Theatre, (803) 359-1436 Nov. 3: Palmetto Pans Steel Drums, University of South Carolina School of Music, (803) 777-4280 Nov. 5: USC University Band, Koger Center, (803) 251-6333 Nov. 7: Percussion Players, University of South Carolina School of Music, (803) 777-4280 Nov. 8: Anna D. & Friends, Fine Arts Center of Forest Acres, (803) 728-1678 Nov. 8: “Away in the Basement – A Church Basement Ladies Christmas,” Newberry Opera House, (803) 276-6264 Nov. 9: Made in the U.S.A., Masterworks 3, South Carolina Philharmonic, Koger Center, (803) 251-6333 Nov. 9: Pretty Lights, Township Auditorium, (803) 576-2350 Nov. 9: The Hit Men, Newberry Opera House, (803) 276-6264 Nov. 9-17: Compleat Female Stage Beauty, Longstreet Theatre, (803) 7774288 Nov. 9-24: “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” Workshop Theatre, (803) 7994876 Nov. 11: USC Gospel Choir, South Carolina School of Music, (803) 777-4280 Nov. 11: Lake Murray Symphony Orchestra, Harbison Theatre, (803) 4003540 Nov. 13: USC Symphony Orchestra, Koger Center, (803) 251-6333 Nov. 13: Maybach Music Group, Colonial

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Now accepting new patients. Most insurance accepted. TODD LEFKOWITZ, MD Lexington Medical Park 1 2728 Sunset Boulevard, Suite 105 West Columbia, SC 29169

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Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012



Life Arena, (803) 576-9200 Nov. 14: Carolina Alive, University of South Carolina School of Music, (803) 777-4280 Nov. 15: Carl Hurley with Jeanne Robinson, Township Auditorium, (803) 576-2350 Nov. 15-18: “The Rose Tattoo,” Lab Theatre, (803) 777-4288 Nov. 16: Comedian James Gregory, Harbison Theatre, (800) 514-3849 Nov. 16, 17: “Into the Woods,” Newberry Opera House, (803) 276-6264 Nov. 17: Going, Going Gone – Musical Program and Silent Auction, South Carolina Archives and History Center, (803) 252-7038 Nov. 18: Palmetto Concert Band, Koger Center, (803) 251-6333 Nov. 19: USC Symphonic Winds and University Band Concert, Koger Center, (803) 251-6333 Nov. 19-Dec. 31: “The Brave Tin Soldier,” Columbia Marionette Theatre, (803) 252-7366 Nov. 20, 21, 23, 25: “The Nutcracker” Ballet, Carolina Ballet, Township Auditorium, (803) 576-2350 Nov. 23 – Dec. 8: The Winter Wonderettes, Town Theatre, (803) 799-2510 Nov. 24-Dec. 2: Two Rooms, Fine Arts Center of Forest Acres, (803) 200-2012 Nov. 23-Dec. 2: “The Christmas Doll,” Columbia Children’s Theatre, (803) 6914548 Nov. 25: Broadway in Columbia, Mannheim Steamroller, Koger Center, (803) 251-6333 Nov. 27: The Carolina Concert Band, Koger Center, (803) 251-6333 Nov. 27: Men’s Chorus Concert, University of South Carolina School of Music, (803) 777-4280 Nov. 27: The Story Tour, Colonial Life Arena, (803) 576-9200

Nov. 27, 28: “Fiddler on the Roof,” Newberry Opera House, (803) 276-6264 Nov. 28: An Evening of Chamber Music, University of South Carolina School of Music, (803) 7774280 Nov. 30: So You Think You Can Dance Tour 2012, Township Auditorium, (803) 5762350 Nov. 30: Eric Church, Colonial Life Arena, (803) 576-9200

Leapin’ lizards!
Repticon SC Reptile and Exotic Animal Show is at Jamil Temple Nov. 3.

Nov. 30, Dec. 1: Sounds of Christmas, Lexington County Choral Society Christmas Concert, Saxe-Gotha Presbyterian Church, lexcochoralsoc.org Nov. 30-Dec. 2: “The Nutcracker,” Columbia Classical Ballet, Koger Center, (803) 251-2222

{museums & art}
Through Jan. 1, 2013: Modern and Contemporary Art from the Collection, Columbia Museum of Art, (803) 799-2810 Through Jan. 6, 2013: The Life and Times of Congressman Robert Smalls, State Museum, (803) 898-4921 Through Jan. 6, 2013: Mark Rothko: The Decisive Decade 1940-1950, Columbia Museum of Art, (803) 7992810 Through March 1: The Civil War in South Carolina: Naval Warfare on the Coast and Failed Attempts to Take Charleston, Columbia Museum of Art, (803) 799-2810 Through June 2, 2013: Civil War in 3D, SC Confederate Relic Room and Military Museum, (803) 737-8095 Through April 2015: The Civil War in South Carolina, 1861-1865, State


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012

Museum, (803) 898-4921 Through Nov. 6: All The In Between Art Exhibit, Vista Studio/Gallery 80808, (803) 319-2223 Through Nov. 15: From Here to Timbuktu, State Museum, (803) 8984921 Through Dec. 14: Get Cocky!, McKissick Museum, (803) 777-7251 Through Dec. 16: McKissick Mysteries, McKissick Museum, (803) 777-7251 Through Dec. 18: The Ultimate Vacation: Watching Other People Work, McKissick Museum, (803) 777-7251 Nov. 2: Arts & Draughts, Columbia Museum of Art, (803) 799-2810 Nov. 2: First Friday Wine and Cheese Reception, Village Artists, (803) 4190235 Nov. 3: Farmville, EdVenture, (803) 7793100 Nov. 3: Meet Renowned Civil War Artist Mort Kuntsler, State Museum, (803) 7992810 Nov. 4, 11, 18, 25: Gallery Tour: Highlights of the Museum’s Collection, Columbia Museum of Art, (803) 799-2810 Nov. 6, 13, 20, 27: Toddler Tuesday, EdVenture, (803) 779-3100 Nov. 7: Wee Wednesdays: Stamping Sensations!, Columbia Museum of Art, (803) 799-2810 Nov. 9: One Room Schoolhouse,: Figure, Line Color, Columbia Museum of Art, (803) 799-2810 Nov. 10: Holiday Artisans’ Fair and Sale, Columbia Museum of Art, (803) 799-2810 Nov. 11: Passport to Art: Autumn Impressions, Columbia Museum of Art, (803) 799-2810 Nov. 13: Family Night, EdVenture, (803) 779-3100 Nov. 14: Community Leader Reader, EdVenture, (803) 779-3100 Nov. 14: Tom Russell: Mesabi, Columbia

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Visit sceg.com/value to see if natural gas is available.
Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012 9

Dig it. Take a tour of the restored garden at the Robert Mills House and Gardens Nov. 15

Museum of Art, (803) 799-2810 Nov. 19-Feb. 24: Snowville, EdVenture, (803) 779-3100

Football vs. Wofford, Williams-Brice Stadium, (803) 777-4274

Nov. 3: Chili Cook-Off, Five Points, (803) 748-7373 Nov. 3: Governor’s Cup Road Race, Capitol Building, governorscupsc.org Nov. 3: Poochapalooza K-9 5K & Dog Walk Festival, Lake Carolina, (803) 736-5253 Nov. 3: Repticon Columbia SC Reptile & Exotic Animal Show, Jamil Temple, (803) 268-4273 Nov. 6: Woodrow Wilson Family Home Hard Hat Tour, Historic Columbia Foundation, (803) 252-1770 Nov. 6, 13, 20: Sandhill Farmer’s Market, (803) 699-3190 Nov. 9: City Strolls with Historic Columbia Foundation, Robert Mills House and Gardens, (803) 252-1770, ext. 24 Nov. 9: 50th Birthday Bash, Robert Mills House and Gardens, (803) 252-1770 Nov. 10: Passing the Torch Awards Gala, Columbia Metropolitan Convention

{special events}
Through Nov. 18: Clinton Sease Farm Corn Maze: Race for the White House, (803) 730-2863 Nov. 1: Meet Me @ The Plaza On Main, Hampton & Main Streets, (803) 7799400, ext. 2040 Nov. 1-4: Chapin’s Holiday Open House, (803) 932-0699 Nov. 1, 8, 15, 29: Garden Volunteer Days, Historic Columbia Foundation, (803) 252-1770 Nov. 2-4: Craftsmen’s Christmas Classic Art & Craft Festival, South Carolina State Fairgrounds, (803) 799-3387 Nov. 3: Columbia Cornbread Festival, Main Street, (803) 386-2624 Nov. 3: Columbia’s 18th Annual Blues Festival, Greene St., (803) 708-4500

Nov. 3-4: USTA/ITF South Carolina Junior Championships-Qualifying, Lexington County Tennis Complex (803) 957-7676 Nov. 5-10: USTA/ITF South Carolina Junior Championships-Main Draw, Lexington County Tennis Complex (803) 957-7676 Nov. 10: University of South Carolina Football vs. Arkansas, Williams-Brice Stadium, (803) 777-4274 Nov. 16-18: USTA Tri-State Tournament of Champions, Cayce Tennis & Fitness Center, (803) 227-3030 and Lexington County Tennis Complex (803) 957-7676 Nov. 17: University of South Carolina


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012

Center, (803) 733-5634 Nov. 10-12: Free Entrance Day, Francis Marion-Sumter National Forests, (803) 561-4000 Nov. 10-12: Free Entrance Day, Congaree National Park, (803) 776-4396 Nov. 11: Second Sunday Stroll of Historic Heathwood, Heathwood Park, (803) 252-1770 Nov. 15: Garden Tour of the Robert Mills Founders Garden, Robert Mills House and Gardens, (803) 252-1770 Nov. 15-17: 23rd Festival of Trees, Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center, (803) 434-7275 Nov. 16-Dec. 31: Holiday House Tours, Robert Mills House and Gardens, (803) 252-1770 Nov. 16-18: 45th Annual Gem, Mineral and Jewelry Show, Jamil Temple, (803) 736-9317 Nov. 17: 43rd Annual Colonial Cup, Springdale Race Course, Camden, (803) 432-96513 Nov. 17: Women of Hampton-Preston

Tour, Hampton-Preston Mansion and Gardens, (803) 252-1770 Nov. 17-Dec. 30: Lights Before Christmas, Riverbanks Zoo, (803) 779-8717 Nov. 18: Dollar Sunday, Robert Mills House and Gardens, (803) 252-1770, ext. 24 Nov. 19: Tigerburn, University of South Carolina, (803) 777-7000 Nov. 19-Dec. 21: Early Adventurers: Santa’s Little Helpers, Robert Mills House and Gardens, (803) 252-1770

Nov. 18: W. Gordon Belser Arboretum Open House, (803) 777-3934 Nov. 22: Turkey Trot 5K, Lake Carolina, (803) 736-5253 Nov. 28: Historic Columbia Foundation’s Mann-Simons Site Tour: Uncovering the Past, Mann-Simon’s Site, (803) 252-1770 Nov. 30-Dec. 1: 5th Annual Festivus, Five Points, (803) 748-7373 — Compiled by Diane Morrison

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Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012 11


Working construction. Bill Paulis of Chapin is a WWII veteran attending a reunion of the 345th Bomber Group in November at Columbia Metropolitan Airport. He makes birdhouses and plans to give birdhouses to fellow veterans.

History in flight
Bomber group reunites in Columbia
Story by Rachel Haynie, Special to Lake Murray and Northeast magazines Photograph by C. Aluka Berry


ill Paulis of Chapin knows how he will greet fellow members of the formative 345th Bomber Group when 100 or more arrive from all over the country Veterans Day weekend for their annual reunion. “I’m giving some of my hand-built birdhouses for door prizes,” said the Lake Murray resident, who finished his training as a B-25 radio operator at (the former) Columbia Army Air Base (CAAB) where the 345th Bomber Group was activated in 1942. This year marks the group’s 70th anniversary. Reunion organizers said deciding the first full Air Force combat group sent to the Pacific would return to Columbia for this significant anniversary was only natural. The four comprising squadrons, also known as the Air Apaches, intercepted and escorted the two Japanese “Betty” bombers


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012

that transported peace emissaries who initiated the Japanese surrender. This year also marks the 70th anniversary of the opening of CAAB (now the site of Columbia Metropolitan Airport) and the 70th anniversary of the Doolittle Raid. Volunteers for that pivotal mission began at CAAB. Paulis, a Washington state native, didn’t know Columbia existed until he was ordered to report here in 1944 for further training. By then, the 79 airmen who followed Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle off the deck of the USS Hornet had been gone for more than two years, first to secluded Eglin AFB, Florida, then to California and ultimately to the deck of the USS Hornet, the Navy carrier from which their 16 B-25s launched on April 18, 1942. During Paulis’ service time at CAAB, prior to his shipping out for the South Pacific, some of the Raiders, including Col. Dean Davenport, had returned and were vigorously training the next wave of airmen. Unlike Davenport and other Raiders who never expected to be back at CAAB, Paulis was determined to return. It was because of a girl. He had given his girlfriend Ann Lee an engagement ring he had bought downtown

345th Bomber Group reunion
The public is invited to the reunion’s educational sessions beginning at 9 a.m. Friday, Nov. 9, at the Doubletree Hotel, Bush River Road, and Saturday, Nov. 10, at the Richland County Public Main Branch Library Auditorium on Assembly Street. A historical marker will be dedicated at 10 a.m. Nov. 11 next to the airport. Details: www.345thbombgroup.org. For S.C. military news and events, see thestate.com/military

at Friedman’s Jewelers for $150. “We had been set up on a blind date July 15, 1944, and before I was ordered to the South Pacific late in 1944, I’d asked her to wait for me. While I was gone, we wrote to each other every day, but toward the end of the war, she sent the ring back,” he said. After the war ended, he was discharged back to Washington state, but Paulis already had been figuring out how to get back to South Carolina — to sit on that porch swing again, wait for Ann’s parents to fall asleep, then talk his sweetheart back into marrying him. The couple married in 1946, made their home in Columbia for many years, ultimately making their Lake Murray

home their primary residence. On their property is the workshop where Paulis has been crafting bluebird houses of local red cedar since 1989. “I have lost count, but I know I’ve made and given away thousands,” he said. “I give them to people I encounter who have good attitudes,” Paulis said. “I may not know anybody coming for the reunion – I was the only one on my crew to come home – but I am positive service to our country is proof enough that veterans coming for the 70th reunion have good attitudes. They will all be eligible for a birdhouse.” Rachel Haynie is a Midlands-based freelance writer.

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Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012 13


Lake Murray houseboat is ‘a year-round weekend vacation destination’ for couple
Story by Kay Gordon, Special to Lake Murray and Northeast magazine • Photographs by Tim Dominick


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012



oyce and Pete Boney enjoy home away from home every week on the waters of Lake Murray and 30 miles away inland in a country setting in Blythewood.

On Thursday afternoons, the couple leaves their 14-by-70 foot landlubber home in Blythewood to drive to their 16-by-84 foot houseboat at Marina Bay on Lake Murray near White Rock. They return to Blythewood on Sunday afternoons. They love the water and living on it, Joyce said. It’s an every week vacation for the couple. The Boneys are avid USC Gamecock fans. Their houseboat, named “The Cock’s Roost,” is furnished throughout in a USC Gamecock decor. They also have a pontoon, named “CockToon,” and a jet ski, dubbed ‘Lil’ Cock.’ “This is a great getaway,” Pete said of the Lake Murray houseboat. Pete, 72, is retired from Allied Signal Co., but still drives a tri-axle truck four days a week. Joyce, 69, is retired from Westinghouse Electric Co. They have three adult daughters and one grandson, who recently graduated from USC, of course. They’ve lived off and on at Marina Bay, formerly Lake Murray Marina, for more than 20 years. They have owned their current houseboat for seven or eight years; before that, a 40-foot long houseboat, and before that, a 24-foot houseboat. Joyce said she loves the peace and quiet they experience on the front porch or top deck of their houseboat. Pete just loves everything about being on the water. They say living on the houseboat is just like living in a land-based dwelling, except there’s no grass to mow. They wash and wax the exterior of the houseboat, but Pete said that’s better than dealing with a lawn mower. And, as far as the interior chores, both pitch in. They grocery shop weekly and tote the goods in carts provided at the end of the dock to haul the goods back to the houseboat. They live in a slip on one of the several docks at the marina and have become friends with their neighbors. They visit from boat to boat, or on the dock. Sometimes, Pete plays music on the dock. He’s the resident DJ, playing mostly shag and beach music. They take

Home to roost. The living room area of Joyce and Pete Boney’s houseboat called ‘The Cock’s Roost’ for their passion for the University of South Carolina’s Gamecocks


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012

Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012



the houseboat out on the water only once a year. More commonly when they do venture out, they go in the pontoon. Their houseboat is furnished with all the necessary amenities, such as refrigerator/freezer, with ice maker, dishwasher, washer and dryer, a heat pump, built-in bar and even a sunken hot tub in Joyce’s bathroom. Hers is one of two bathrooms; there are four bedrooms, all of which have queen-size beds, except for theirs, which has a king-size bed. A spiral staircase on the rear deck leads to the upper deck, the length of the lower level, where tables and chairs can accommodate dozens of people for gatherings. They say they have the best of both worlds. “A bad day at the lake is better than a day anywhere else,” Pete said. And, Joyce added, “We’re on vacation all the time.” Kay Gordon is a Midlands-based freelance writer. Greetings, land lovers... One of Joyce Boney’s favorite decorations is a mermaid that a friend gave to her decked out of course in a garnet dress.

Outdoor, indoor. The boat has a porch on the front entrance to the living area.


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012

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Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012 19



1. 2. 3.

Marathon Man
his daughter who lives there. Suddenly, he was hooked. He has multiple sclerosis. If you ask how that impacts him, he’ll simply say it makes running for long periods more difficult, especially on hot days. He ran the Antarctic Marathon in 2001. The race requires a major personal fundraising effort, which was one of the draws for Dhunjishah. He raised $14,000 for a pediatric care charity. “I felt I should do something to say thank you that I can be out here running,” he says. That led him to a quest to run marathons on every continent. He knocked off Australia in 2005, Europe in 2006, Africa in 2008 and Asia in 2009. Just for kicks, he ran the Athens Marathon in 2010, the 2,500th anniversary of the first such run during the Battle of Marathon. He noticed people with 50-State Club T-shirts a few years ago and thought “Why not?” After doing just a few marathons per year, he picked up

26.2 things about Mike Dhunjishah’s plan to run a race in each of the 50 states
Story by Joey Holleman • Photographs by C. Aluka Berry

arathoner Mike Dhunjishah plans to knock off two more states in October to reach his goal of running a 26.2mile event in every state. Here are 26.2 things that set the Richland County resident apart from the running crowd.

4. 5.

He’s 67 and didn’t run his first marathon until age 50. Dhunjishah once bragged to his young children that he would do a marathon when he hit 50. The kids probably forgot the boast. Dhunjishah didn’t. He completed the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington, D.C. in 1995 in slightly more than four hours to back up his talk. He had no plans to do another marathon, but he found meaning in running after the death of his mother and his wife, Linda’s, battle with breast cancer in the late 1990s. In 1997, he and Linda celebrated a positive cancer result by participating in a three-day fundraising running event in California, where they then lived. He ran his second marathon in Austin, Texas, in 1998 while visiting



Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012

Wall of fame. Mike Dhunjishah has earned many medals from running marathons all over the world. Although he didn’t run his first marathon until age 50, Dhunjishah hopes to reach his 50-state goal by mid-October.

Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012


Far out in the Far East. Dhunjishah is seen with his wife, Linda, as he drinks a beer after running a marathon in Mongolia in 2009.

the pace with 10 in 2010 and 10 in 2011. Mike has lost about 20 pounds this year, a drop he attributes to eating healthier. He didn’t want to enter the 50-State Club as a fat guy. He’s not fast. “I don’t run; I complete,” he says. He’s a six-hour marathoner. Some race organizers allow him to start ahead of the crowd so he can finish before they start dismantling the finish line gear. Linda, now 69, started running half-marathons while Mike does marathons. “He’s so slow, I figure why should I just stand there and wait for him,” she says. She’s slow, too, but she finishes long before he does. Mike hates marathons, at least briefly during each race. “On about mile 22-23 of every marathon, I say, ‘This is stupid.’ ... My favorite marathon is the one I just finished, and my least favorite is the one that’s next.” So why does he do it? “We get to travel, meet people, spend time together,” he says. “It’s fun. If you’re not having fun, why do it?” He really has fun. Long ago, Mike started a tradition of drinking beer during races. Most runners pick up water or a sports drink around mile 20. Mike instead enjoys a cold beer, often planted near the course by Linda or friends. Usually, it’s a can or bottle. But at the new Columbia Marathon last year, a friend handed him a large cup of beer at a stop along Trenholm Road. “I had to walk a mile so I didn’t spill any,” he says.

8. 9.

10. 11. 12. 13.


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012

He was born in 1945 to foreign nationals (his dad was British, his mother Russian) who were being held in a Japanese internment camp in China. That might not have anything to do with his running marathons. Or maybe it does. After the war, his family lived in China until 1957, when ruling communists forced foreign business owners like his family out of the country. The family settled in San Francisco. As an adult, Mike was working in Iran in the mid-1970s and had to flee that political revolution, too. He’s a civil engineer with AMEC, a career that has allowed him the time and resources to travel the globe to running events. Out of Africa. Dhunjishah ran a marathon in
Kenya during 2008. At left, a quilt in Dhunjishah’s home is made from T-shirts that he got while running different marathons.

20. 21.

22. 23. 24. 25.

Stick-to-itiveness is one of his strengths. He’s been married to Linda for 46 years. He has worked for AMEC or its predecessor Law Engineering for 40 years. Mike struggled academically in his first stab at college, but after a stint in the Army and a tour of Vietnam, he came back to get undergrad and master’s degrees from the University of California at Berkeley. He and Linda must have done something right as parents. Son Michael is a West Point grad and a lieutenant colonel in the Army stationed in Peru. Daughter Michelle has a law degree from Wake Forest and is director and general counsel for the Foster Care Review Board in South Carolina. She was the lure for her parents to move here seven years ago. The walls of one room in Mike and Linda’s home are covered by quilts made of race T-shirts from various states. All of the marathon medals are displayed in a corner of the garage. Mike needs two more T-shirts and medals to complete the 50 states. Hartford Marathon in Connecticut on Oct. 13 would be No. 49.

He draws others into his fun. At a marathon on a golf course in West Virginia, he was running at the back of the pack alongside a man he’d just met. He mentioned he planned to stop in the clubhouse and buy a beer. The other runner laughed, thinking Mike was joking. Mike stopped and bought two beers, giving one to his surprised new friend. He doesn’t care what place he finishes. “Who are you competing with but yourself?” he says. But he does sort of care about who beats him. When a bout with plantar fasciitis slowed him to a near crawl at a marathon in Arizona, “I got beat by a one-legged fat guy who was taking pictures,” he says with mock anger.


15. 16.


Don’t let the slow times and the beer stops fool you, he’s a serious runner. He and Linda get up before the sun for training runs four days a week. The routine is four or five miles in their Lake Carolina neighborhood three days a week and a longer run at Riverfront Park on Sundays. He wasn’t a slug before that first marathon at age 50. He played and refereed soccer, an ideal training for future marathon runners.

17. 18.

He never quits. “That’s what it’s all about. You finish. It’s like life.”

26.1. 26.2.

Des Moines Marathon in Iowa on Oct. 21 would be

No. 50.


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012


Old home deconstructed to be reconstructed
Story by Joey Holleman • Photographs by Kim Kim Foster-Tobin
24 Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012


Home sweet home. Steve Bienkoski is tearing down an 1830s farmhouse in Newberry County to move it and then rebuild it on a lot near Lake Murray.

he back room of the old house sags under a collapsed section of roof. White paint peels off the wooden siding. It almost appears the branches from two giant magnolias hold up the front porch.
The two-story structure perched alongside the railroad tracks near the Newberry County community of Kinards looked like a candidate for the bulldozer. In fact, that nearly was its fate until Steve Bienkoski got his hooks in it. Now, it’s bound for new life on the banks of Lake Murray. Bienkoski connected with the owner of the property in the karmic way his business usually operates – somebody admires


the work he has done for others and contacts him to do work for them. In this case, a new client mentioned he had an old house he was considering demolishing or donating to the local fire department for practice sessions. Bienkoski drove up from his West Columbia home to check it out. “We pulled in here and you can see the bones of this house,” Bienkoski says. “You just know it’s old.” Really old. The distinctive notched 8-by-8 corner beams from the floor to the roof hint of an 1810 carpentry style, but the rest of the construction is indicative of work done between 1830 and 1850. Bienkoski suspects an elderly man built the home with an apprentice in the 1830s.

Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012


Found treasures. Bienkoski is salvaging as much of the old farmhouse as possible. From left, the original door locks; square-headed nails hold floor
boards together; each board from the farmhouse is cleaned up, nails removed, grouped, tagged and stored on the truck for shipping.

Looking through time. Bubbles in the original panes of glass from the 1830s become visible in sunlight.


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012

Blast from the past. Bienkoski looks at an explosive that he discovered in the yard from the 1800s that was never detonated.

“Every board is hand-planed,” Bienkoski says. “They didn’t build houses with a three-year warranty back then. These houses are built to be a home for generations of the family.” Mike Bedenbaugh, executive director of the Palmetto Trust for Historic Preservation, was well aware of the gem of a house. He recognized its age from the outside and asked the owner to let him check out the interior. “It literally had been left to the dogs,” Bedenbaugh says. Before her death, the last resident had moved into a trailer nearby and let pets stay in the old house. Dog feces covered the floor the first time Bedenbaugh entered the house, but the only structural problem was in a small back section where the roof had leaked. The condition of the house might have scared some potential buyers, but Bienkoski kept coming back to its “bones.” He bought the structure with the requirement that he remove it from the site. Bienkoski’s company, Born Again Creations (“That covers what I am spiritually and what I do professionally,” he says), often salvages wood from old building to use in other projects. But this wasn’t a wood salvage case; this was a more complicated whole-house rescue. Bienkoski and his two-man crew numbered and carefully removed wall paneling, the fluted baseboards, doors and mantles and the amazingly intact windows. All were shrink-wrapped in bundles and stacked in a 53-foot container. Next came the

“bones,” the heart-pine support beams, joists and flooring, many held in place by wooden pins. Bienkoski didn’t find money or historic documents behind the wall panels like he does in some old houses, but he did find a live Civil War artillery shell in the backyard using a metal detector. Unlike many homes that survived from that period into the late 1900s, this one had no major renovations. Built for a physician who was the patriarch of the Gary family, it was rather grand for the backcountry plantation homes of the time. The two bedroom-over-two living rooms layout covers about 1,760 square feet with a large dining area and porches front and back downstairs. A room later converted into a kitchen might have been a storage area or downstairs bedroom originally, Bedenbaugh says. A small slave cabin also stood on the property until a few years ago, Bedenbaugh says. Bienkoski expects the deconstruction will take about a month. The reconstruction could take a little longer. He plans to add two bathrooms and two walk-in closets in the back of the second floor and a second-floor of the porch. Preservation purists don’t like those sorts of major structural changes to old homes, but Bienkoski prefers to look at it as adding function while “preserving the workmanship of the building.” The original granite foundation stones won’t be used in the same manner at the new home site, but they might end up somewhere on the property. Bienkoski also does custom stone work. The future of the building isn’t set in stone. Columbia environmental consultant Yancey McLeod hopes to build a home on Lake Murray, and he has talked with Bienkoski about using the Kinards structure. “You can’t get wood like that anymore,” McLeod says. “The timber industry doesn’t give trees 100 years to grow anymore.” If the McLeod deal doesn’t come to fruition, Bienkoski could find a piece of property on the lake and rebuild the home there on his own dime. He’s confident there are enough people who appreciate history and old wood that someone will buy the finished product. “That’s what’s great about my job,” Bienkoski says. “Anybody can build modern style, but when you work on this type of structure, you’re taking a walk back in time.”

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Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012 27


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012

Radio-controlled plane clubs take to the skies with their hobby
Story by Joey Holleman • Photographs by Gerry Melendez

Taking flight


wo bright yellow Piper Cubs with 106-inch wingspans putter proudly in wide ovals beneath a backdrop of puffy clouds over a farm field in rural Lexington County. The replica of a WWII fighter jet performs acrobatic rolls nearby, resembling a pesky little guy following behind twin big brothers. Moments later, those three radio-controlled planes touch down on the well-tended grass runway and make way in the skies for a kerosene-powered jet, which zooms past the pilot stand with a roar that would seem more at home 20 miles away at Columbia Metropolitan Airport. It’s hardly a toy plane, capable of hitting 135 mph and requiring a special license to operate. That’s the scene most Tuesday afternoons and Saturdays at the LARKS field, home to the largest radio-controlled plane club in the Midlands. Take three left turns off exit 39 on I-20, and you enter a world of scaled-down planes and the scaled-up little boys who fly them.

It’s as if a bunch of 10-year-old buddies got together in their backyard — only these are adults playing with toys with price tags ranging from a couple hundred to several thousand dollars. “Playing” is the key for this group. “This is one of the few hobbies that it doesn’t have to be competitive in the least,” said Steve Livingston, the LARKS safety officer and general go-to guy. “Other hobbies I’ve tried – golf, tennis, racquetball – somebody always wanted to keep score, and you either won or you lost. Out here, we’re just flying for fun.” While there are competitive events for radio-controlled airplanes, most local events — called fly-ins — are designed more to show off new or improved models. Or simply to get together with others who share the passion. The size of the local R/C plane subculture might surprise some. There are dozens of clubs in South Carolina, including several in the Midlands. LARKS and Gaston-based Congaree

All systems go. Paul Bass, a LARKS pilot, goes through a pre-flight check on a Stearman biplane, one of 20 radio-controlled airplanes he owns. Inset,
an electric foam T28 Warbird Plane was one of many on display during an evening of flying at LARKS airfield just off I-20 near Batesburg-Leesville.

Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012



Flyers cover rural western Lexington County; Lake Murray Regional R/C Flyers in Prosperity is north of the lake; and Jackson Flyers Association at Fort Jackson and Kershaw County Flyers in Camden offer alternatives on the northeast side of Columbia. There’s a less formal group that uses the open space at Clemson’s Sandhill Research and Education Center. For annual fees of about $100, the clubs offer American Academy of Model Aeronautics-backed liability insurance and access to fields they own or lease. They also provide camaraderie, guys (it is a male-dominated activity) who like to talk about the planes as much as they like to build and fly them. Retiree Lewis Lapine, a member of the Lake Murray group, is like most flyers. He got a taste of model planes as a child, left behind the hobby as work and family took precedence for years, then got bit by the bug again as he had more time and disposable income. “I enjoy putting them together, getting

All smiles. Steve Livingston, left, jokes with Bill Harden. them trimmed out and flying,” Lapine said. In addition to flying the planes at the field, his group holds monthly meetings, where the discussion often revolves around “what airplane are you hiding from your wife this week,” Lapine joked. Lake Murray’s 12-member club has a two-acre airfield in the middle of a 600acre farm. LARKS has 85 members and

Fly boys. A group of LARKS pilots, including from left, Jerry Lucas, Rick Cain and Bill Harden watch a flight of one of their radio-controlled planes.


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012

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Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012 31

Another good day. Paul Bass’ LED-lighted T28 radio-controlled airplane goes on its final flight of the evening as the sun sets.

a six-acre airfield amidst 32 acres of farm fields the club leases. Once up in the air, the planes aren’t limited to the club’s airspace. “You can fly as far as you can see the aircraft,” Livingston said. But pilots have to be careful not to let planes get so far away they have trouble telling which direction the plane is heading. That can lead to crashes and lost aircraft. Pilots guide the planes using a radio controller — a slightly larger, more complicated version of a video-game controller. In fact, kids who play video games often pick up the nuances of turning the plane right, left, up and down quicker than older folks. Club members take the time to teach newcomers the basics of piloting the planes, using a device that allows veteran pilots to take over when a novice is losing control of the plane. Some of the planes can fly straight out of the box, but many come in pieces that must be assembled. The structure ranges from solid foam to plastic to wooden frames covered by fabric skins. Propulsion for the planes (much like R/C cars and boats) can be electric, gasoline, methanol-based glow fuel or a kerosene blend for the turbine-powered jets. The controllers are programmed to let


Radio-controlled plane organizations in the Lake Murray/Northeast area. LARKS, 1800 Ben Franklin Road, Batesburg-Leesville,www.larksrc.com Lake Murray Regional R/C Flyers, corner of Fire Tower Road and Clara Barton Road, Prosperity, llapine@sc.rr.com Congaree Flyers, 697 Cassidy Road, Gaston, www.congareeflyer.com Jackson Flyers, Wildcat Road, Fort Jackson, www.jfa-rc.com Kershaw County Flyers, Park Road, near Goodale State Park, www.kc-flyers.com


In a video by photojournalist Gerry Melendez, enthusiasts share their love for radio-controlled planes. thestate.com/lakemurray

pilots know when planes are running low on power. Most flights are about five to 10 minutes, which sounds short until you spend 10 minutes staring into the sky and concentrating on raising and lowering flaps to keep a plane aloft and steered correctly. A beginner can get a basic plane and necessary gear for about $250. Additional planes start at less than $100 and rise to several thousand dollars. Livingston, who lives in Irmo, flew R/C planes for about a year as a child, but he couldn’t afford to go whole-hog into the hobby then. He was sucked back in

when his own son asked for a plane – and not a toy plane – for his 15th birthday. “We started flying every weekend together,” Livingston said. “It brought me back to something I loved many years ago.” The hobby has become an obsession for him. He pulls a trailer full of planes and gear to the LARKS field each week. He has invested thousands of dollars in the hobby, but he says he spends less on flying than many golfers spend on gear and greens fees. And he never drives home from the LARKS field with a losers’ frown.


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012


people, places, things



The Crooked Creek Art League meets at 7 p.m. Monday, Nov. 19, at Crooked Creek Park, Old Lexington Highway in Chapin. The Seven Oaks Art League meets at 7 p.m. Nov. 14 at Seven Oaks Park, at 200 Leisure Lane, Columbia. The Palmetto Painters, an S.C. Chapter of the Society of Decorative Painters, will have a special membership event Saturday, Nov. 10 , at 10 a.m. at Green Hill Baptist Church, 1734 Augusta Road, West Columbia. There will be door prizes and a free acrylic program; lunch will be provided. Details: Pam at (803) 781-2340 or at PamS@sc.rr.com, or www. PalmettoPainters.com. “Disney’s The Little Mermaid Jr.” will be performed by the Village Square Theatre Nov. 2-18. The theatre is at 105 Caughman Road in Lexington. Details: www. villagesquaretheatre.com Chapin Community Theatre is staging “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” through Nov. 3 at Harbison Theater at Midlands Technical College, 7300 College St., Irmo. Details: ww.wchapintheatre.com The Lake Murray Symphony Orchestra welcomes the Dick Goodwin Quintet for a show of on Nov. 11 at Harbison Theatre at Midlands Tech, 7300 College St. Admission is free. Details: (803) 400-3540.


A Hope and Remembrance Service at Saxe Gotha Presbyterian Church is set for Sunday, Nov. 4. The service, from 3-4 p.m. honors those who have lost a loved one. Details: (803) 359-7770. The church will also have a special seminar, Surviving the Holidays, on Sunday, Dec. 2, from 3-5 p.m. To register, call (803) 359-3380. The church is at 5503 Sunset Blvd., Lexington.

An evening of music. Connie James willl appear with the Sandlapper
Singers Feb. 8, 2013. Tickets are now on sale.


The Lexington County Museum Christmas Open House is Dec. 9. The event, at the museum at 231 Fox St., is from 2-5 p.m. Refreshments will be served. Free to the public. The Capital City Lake Murray Country annual Holiday Open House at the Capital City/Lake Murray Country Visitors Center is set for Dec. 8-9. Members of the Coldstream Garden Club, Garden Club of Saluda, Newcomer’s Club of Greater Columbia and Quail Valley Garden Club will decorate the center, located at the historic Lorick Plantation House, 2184 North Lake Drive, for the open house. Hours are 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Dec. 8 and noon-3 p.m. Dec. 9. Wingard’s Nursery and Garden Center celebrates the holiday season Nov. 15 with holiday carolers, cider and the debut of the 2012 Lake Murray ornament. Stop by the nursery at 1403 North Lake Drive (Hwy. 6), Lexington, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Woodley’s Garden Center is the host for Family Day from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Nov. 23. Have your photo taken with Santa

and enjoy refreshments. Pets are welcome. Woodley’s locations are at 10015 Two Notch Road (803-788-1487) and in Irmo at 2840 Dreher Shoals Road (803-407-0601) More details: www. woodleygardencenter.com Get tickets now for a special concert featuring nationally known singer Connie James with the Sandlapper Singers, set for Feb. 8, 2013. Connie James, a New York City singer and actress, is a Columbia native who also attended the University of South Carolina. She has toured with comedian Bob Newhart, and starred in a one-woman show, “Fever: A Tribute to Peggy Lee,” and has acted in several independent films. Other guest artists include the Dick Goodwin Jazz Ensemble and the Sandlapper Singers Orchestra. To purchase tickets, visit www. sandlappersingers.org or call (803) 381-5481 Have an item for People, Places and Things? Email lakemurray@ thestate.com. Event notices can be included in our monthly calendar, but must be sent at least six weeks in advance.

Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012


Backyard attractions draw family together and outside year-round
Story by Deena C. Bouknight, Special to Lake Murray and Northeast magazines • Photographs by Kim Kim Foster-Tobin
34 Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012


Positive outlook. The centerpiece of the Sorrels’ outdoor living area features a negative-edge pool that looks out over Lake Murray.


xterior living is not designed with just late spring and summer in mind. The goal is for functionality year-round.

That’s what Gene Sorrel and his wife, Mary Ruth, envisioned when they transformed the backyard of their 19-year-old Louisiana-style residence in the Timberlake neighborhood on Lake Murray. About four springs ago, the Sorrels looked at their

growing family – they have five children and 12 grandchildren – and decided to notch-up the recreational value of their lakefront property. For 19 years, the Sorrels backyard included primarily a deck and grass. They wanted a pool to be the centerpiece. Gene enlisted Clearwater Construction to create a negative-edge design that would give the illusion that the pool water poured

Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012


In the open air. The outdoor room includes a full kitchen that features a marble slab countertop. The project took six months to complete. Underneath the pool is an elaborate water system. “What was most unique about the pool was the finish they chose for the inside of the pool,” says Mike Elsey of Clearwater. “It’s dynamic … unbelievable … not like anything we had done. It has an iridescent look because of the smooth glass beads in the finish.” There is also a semi-circle fireplace, a spacious outdoor living room underneath the deck with a Cypress ceiling, and a kitchen area with bar that is as fully stocked with appliances as the interior kitchen. The large Fire Magic grill offers two different grill spaces, as well as a barbecue pit and a workspace. The grill heats to 1,400 degrees – the same as the grills at such steakhouses as Ruth’s Chris. In addition, the Sorrels renovated their basement area so that it flows seamlessly from the inside to the outdoor living space. There is now matching granite on the floor. The basement


into the lake. The other best thing he did was to hire a landscape architect, Mark Cotterill, says Sorrel. “He was able to come up with a design that looked like it had always flowed with the original construction of the house. I said that if we were going to do it, we were going to do it right.” It took about six months and a substantial budget to construct a backyard that is not only “beautiful,” says Sorrel, but completely useable. The wooden staircases and deck on the back of the house were removed. Much of the yard was excavated. Now in place is a brick courtyard, retaining wall, columns, stairwells and walkways. The pool is surrounded by travertine and brick.


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012

Fire and water. Above, the fire pit looks out over the lake. The bottom surface of the pool, below,
is covered in Beadcrete, a combination of glass beads and pebbles.

currently has a home theater, so guests can either watch movies or games on the 120-inch television inside or the 70-inch television in the outdoor living space, which is equipped with seven ceiling fans, two comfortable sofas, and upholstered chairs. For the past four years, the Sorrels’ family, with grandchildren ranging from toddler age to 20s, have considered his home as the destination area for holiday gatherings and summers getaways. “My wife and I laugh and say ‘camp’ starts the first week of June and ends in August,” Gene Sorrel said. Children from out of town stay for at least two weeks in the summer and congregate there during holidays. Family living in Columbia use the backyard regularly. Sorrel, in his 70s, and his wife don’t often swim in the pool themselves, but say that it

is well used by others. Benefits are mostly visual, especially the illusion of the water spilling into the lake because of the pool’s infinity edge. What they do relish is the opportunity to host everything from intimate dinner parties to large events. Gene Sorrel says much of their gatherings surround food. For the holidays, a tradition is to fry chicken. Family members cluster outside around the fireplace, the television and the kitchen while the chicken is frying. “We’re outdoor people,” he says, “and I can honestly say we’ve used our backyard since we made these changes. It’s the ideal setting, in different ways, all year-round.” Deena C. Bouknight is a Midlands-based freelance writer.

Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012


{ past tense }

Poll manager Mary Newby looks on as Royal Roseberry helps his mother, Rose, in the voting booth at St. John Neumann Church on Polo Road.


Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012

Divorce hurts enough…
A different way to divorce



Lake Murray–Columbia® & Northeast Columbia | November 2012


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